Twenty minutes of quiet play time. Okay... so Mama fudged a bit with the timer, and it's actually 25 minutes, but you aren't going to tell him, are you?
Each day is so different. We've had a wonderful morning, Kiddo playing with his Tinkertoys and working with markers while I folded laundry and washed up dishes. He helped playfully, handing me things from the laundry basket, and waiting until I was finished with one thing before I fulfilled his various requests. Thelonious Monk played in the background, performing with a Big Band and I wondered what our day held.
Kiddo drew me to the window. "Look, the moon" he said, pointing to an overcast pearl sun. It was due to rain, yet I still felt compelled to get outside. Took a shower and then asked Kiddo what he'd like to do today. "I want to go to sushi." A boy seriously after my own heart. It was misting when we left, and steadily raining when we walked into the restaurant. Both of us were wet, but it just didn't matter. We sat side by side, the easiest way for me to sit with Kiddo when we're out, and ordered a feast of super eel roll, miso soup, rice and edamame (the first two for me, the last two mostly his), then washed our hands and played with foam beading pieces while we waited. Eating wasn't the messy endeavor it usually was --only three edamame beans hit the floor this time. Kiddo was pleasant and relaxed. Our trip to the store afterward was an easy one: salmon, carrots, pitas and a muffin all procured with no fuss. This was sooo not the experience we'd had here the time before, when Joe had to take him out to wait for me in the car because Mama Doesn't Play That whole flopping around thing.
Maybe my being consistent with follow-through influenced today's cooperation, but I think it's also the coming back to Earth after the distractions of the holidays. The first day of being Mama's only companion after days of Daddy being home and having to share her attention with him. It doesn't matter to me what's made today so nice, really.
After we got home from our outings, wet and cold and happy, we went into his room and set up his little tent on his futon. I used string to restrain the tent at all four corners, so it's tied to the frame and can't slide off. Kiddo hung his little lantern his Aunt Chris and Uncle John in Pennsylvania had sent for Christmas. "I love my little lantern" he told me in a cute, happy voice. "You be the lying down one and I'll sit up. I'm Santa Claus and here's toys." He offered me a basket of bristle blocks. We worked together, adding pieces to each other until the panoramic 'city' suddenly looked to Kiddo like a train, so we added wheels and carefully laid our creation in the basket.
I made a snack for him to enjoy in the tent and set the timer. Guess where he is right now? Three feet away from me, under the laundry basket, asking for "pet food" and "I want to set the timer for your twenty minutes" and when I tell him I'll help him get pet food when the timer goes ding and that it's still quiet play time, he says "no, it's quiet playtime for you". So I'll keep on here with my quiet time while he backstrokes all over the kitchen floor with an empty laundry basket held over his head. It's someone's quiet play time, that's for sure. I'm not sure if he's going to ever learn what the word quiet means, besides when he's sleeping. But this will work for now.