Thursday, February 28, 2013

Boys at Play

I have always been a vocal advocate for having closely-spaced kids.

Admittedly this is largely because, having done this myself, I'm anxious to get other people to join me in my misery.

But it's also at least in part because I have long believed in the simple theory that having closely spaced siblings means that, while the first years may be really tough, the unimpeachable payoff will be that THE KIDS WILL ONE DAY GO OFF AND PLAY TOGETHER -- LEAVING YOU ALONE FOR LONG PERIODS OF TIME!!!

As my boys have now reached the ages of two and four, the time has come to put this theory to the test! I've put in my years of diaper changing! I've done more nighttime feedings that I care to mention! I've made so many grilled cheese sandwiches I've lost count! 

Now I'm ready for the part where I linger in a warm bath as my children teach each other to play chess quietly in the living room.

Unfortunately that's not at all what it is really like.

Here are the games that my sons have actually engaged in together just this week:

  • Let's Experiment With the Grill!
  • I Can Jump Off the Top of the Playhouse - Can You?
  • Why Is All the Dirt in the Garden? Let's Bring Some Into Our Beds!
  • Clothes in the Hamper? I Say Clothes in the Oven!!!
  • How Hard Can I Hit You on the Head with This Board?

It's as if my boys are on a mission to invent the most dangerous, destructive, and/or messy pastimes possible.

Yesterday I was sitting inside trying to explain to my 13-month-old why we don't eat from the garbage when I looked out to watch my two sons as they played together in the back yard. 

Here is a rough transcript of their interaction:

SON #1: Let's play in the sandbox!
SON #2: OKAY!!!!!
SON #1: That was fun for two minutes! Now what?
SON #2: Let's throw sand out of the sandbox as fast as we can!
SON #1: Awesome!
SON #2: That was cool for 76 seconds. What's next?
SON #1: about we pour the sand down the slide? I bet that would look neat!
SON #2: You were right! That did really look neat. BUT NOW I'M BORED!!!
SON #1: OK, what about if you go down the slide while I pour sand underneath you?
SON #2: Great idea!
SON #1: Go!
SON #2: Whee!!!
(Laughter of both sons swells and then fades away)
SON #1: That was fun!
SON #2: Yeah that was GREAT!
SON #1: OK, now you slide down the slide and I'll pour sand on your head and you fly by me!
SON #1: Will do!
SON #2:  That was great! 
(Laughter of both sons again swells and then fades away)
SON #2: Really?
SON #2: Okay!
(After a moment)
SON #2: Owwwwwwwww! MY EYES!!!!!!!! MOMMMY!!!!!!
(cut to inter-brother punching and wailing)


It would seem that I might have to go back to the drawing board on my "closely-spaced-siblings-leads-to-quiet-household-playtime-harmony" theory.

Who knew?


  1. This is why whenever kids get quiet, moms start to worry, rather than relax. Many moons ago, when my now 21 year old was about 6, he and his cousin decided it would be a great idea to pour the contents of the gas can my husband had left accessible into their little pool and splash around in it. They then got to spend hours and hours in the bathtub (as advised by poison control) as their reward. Good times....

  2. I still think that you're onto something with the "having kids close together in age" thing. I only have one brother and he is five years younger than me. Growing up we weren't ever very close because he was so far apart from me in age. On the other hand I have a crazy aunt an uncle who had 8 biological kids and adopted 3-4 more (I can't ever keep track of how many kids they have. haha) but their kids are super tight. Its always makes me a little jealous...

    Anyway I read a study that said that family happiness was based more on the number of kids rather then the spacing. The study said that with each child the unhappiness of the parents DECREASES until they have four children. At four childre

    n their happiness IMPROVES with each child that they have. Interesting right? I guess once you have 4 kids you can't care so much about the little problems in life and you just focus on the important things!

  3. that last post didn't have my correct e-mail address, my address is Sorry about that!