Thursday, March 6, 2014

Babies Don't Keep

Although it is a day early, this post is for Ben's 2nd birthday which is tomorrow.  We are leaving for a trip to Big Sky, MT, on Saturday morning and I have a lot to do to get ready and Justin has been gone all week so I doubt that I will get around to spending time on the computer tomorrow between packing and trying to come up with some way to observe the his birthday!  We plan to get together with family when we get back and I have it in mind to make a cake on the trip but we will see. 
I have to add the traditional "where did the time go?" musings that accompany the passing of a year.  It really has been a crazy two years and Ben has changed so much.  Here is a photo montage:

I love this picture because it sums up his whole life until he was about eighteen months old...refusing to eat and being offended by the thought of eating.  Even his birthday smash cake!  COME ON!




I feel like all I ever talk about is how he drives me crazy, exhausts me, and destroys the house.  Coincidentally, if you heard my family's stories about me as a child you would think that I was a little weirdo who did nothing but complain and boss everyone else around so here I am going to describe Ben by his good qualities.  He loves to play and have fun, he is gentle and kind with Allan and every other animal he meets and, although it gets annoying, it is really cute when he grabs my hand and directs me to play with him.  I know I won't always be his first choice for a playmate.  He is very sweet around Tessa.  I know he is jealous sometimes, but he cares about her.  If he is awake before her he asks where she is and looks for her.  Last week, I set her down and went downstairs because I needed to bring something to the car.  I was putting my shoes on and Ben followed me down and was standing on the landing looking concerned and pointing up stairs saying "Babeee!"  He thought I was forgetting her.  He also likes to "help" me around the house, especially with giving her a bath and with laundry.  I know he won't want to do that forever either. 

As he turns two and is a running, jumping, talking kid and not a baby anymore, and especially as I was looking through old photos, I am reminded of the famous poem "Song for a Fifth Child", also known as "the babies don't keep" poem.  This poem is pretty famous and I have seen it several times on the Internet but it has timeless appeal because it's the truth and any parent with little kids and a trashed house can relate.

Mother, oh Mother, come shake out your cloth,
Empty the dustpan, poison the moth,
Hang out the washing and butter the bread,
Sew on a button and make up a bed.
Where is the mother whose house is so shocking?
She’s up in the nursery, blissfully rocking.

Oh, I’ve grown shiftless as Little Boy Blue
(Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo).
Dishes are waiting and bills are past due
(Pat-a-cake, darling, and peek, peekaboo).
The shopping’s not done and there’s nothing for stew
And out in the yard there’s a hullabaloo
But I’m playing Kanga and this is my Roo.
Look! Aren’t her eyes the most wonderful hue?
(Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo).
The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
For children grow up, as I’ve learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I’m rocking my baby and babies don’t keep.

I feel like a read somewhere that the woman who wrote this (Ruth Hulburt Hamilton) won a poetry contest and had it printed in a magazine or something but I can't remember the details and Google is not clearly telling me with minimal effort. 

So happy 2nd birthday Benjamin!  You are still a baby to me!  Looking at old pictures of him makes me really nostalgic for the old house. 

Stay tuned maybe tomorrow night or else after we return from Montana for some cake and present pictures. 

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