The nephew is staying with us this week. My favorite boy, with his sticky fingers, chocolate-popsicle ringed mouth, mismatched shorts and t-shirt (because "Who cares? I'm going swimming anyway"), big multi-colored eyes (are they hazel? are they grey? I don't know!) has invaded the quietude that normally dwells at Casa del Rapp. I have woken up to a song being plunked out on the piano at full volume (just one song - he only knows the one), watched him try to navigate the keyboard to play Oregon Trail from 1989 or thereabouts (no mouse control, then, m'boy - if you google it you can find it in the Apple archives) while we crossed our fingers that the wagon wouldn't tip over in the middle of the Snake River, and eaten my weight in plastic-wrapped freeze pops. I realized a few things: I have a fraction of his energy, he eats non-stop (and has little 6-pack abs to show for it), and he's not so little anymore. Sad face for Auntie Bee....
I was cutting out all those pieces for the wavy top tote for my grandma last night, while he scampered off to bed (after a full day of running he still has energy to go full-speed everywhere). I was fusing all of my interfacing, when this caught my eye:
His little (or not so little) shoes (would you believe these are practically new?) just chilling on a dining room chair. Something about them sitting there while little guy was in dreamland made my heart get a tingly feeling, and I felt in the worst way like I was going to cry for no reason at all. But there is a reason - my guy is growing up and getting big and wise and smart and independent (seriously - it's a good thing he's not my actual kid because my heart might literally split in two over it). I finished what I was doing and then headed to bed, where I couldn't fall asleep because too many things were racing through my brain. Things like:
- The night he slept over when he was just under two. He was sleeping in a mini-crib in my mom's room, and in the middle of the night he decided to stand up and yell at full volume every word he knew. Over and over. "Up! Down! Mom-mom! Apple!" and so on. I almost wet MY bed across the hall I was laughing so hard.
- How he used to say "yid-dull" instead of "little." I'm still sorry I taught him proper pronunciation of his Ls.
- The time he hid in the empty clothes hamper and scared the living hell out of my dad (who is usually stoic and unshakeable).
- How my sister taught him what tepid means, and how he would use it. When running his bath he'd come and watch you and say "Dooon't make it too hot - make it tepid" (he was about 3 so this was really funny).
I miss my little guy, but I kinda sorta can't wait to see who this big little guy becomes.
Next up: something I made. Not sure what - I've got a few things ready to show :)