My 20-month-old nephew Gabriel is a constant source of joy for me. I babysit him on most Fridays, and we always have a new adventure together during that time. No two days are ever the same.
In October, I wrote about the lessons G has taught me at his young age. And during this past week, I realized I have so much more to share about him (with his parents’ permission).
This is the first post in a series called “Fridays with G”. I hope this weekly post will bring a smile to your face.
I arrived at G’s home at 7:00 a.m. this past Friday, and his dad warned me he was grumpy and had been up since the crack of dawn. I was determined to set this straight since G and I have an agreement: When Aunt Mel shows up, he should cease all grumpiness. So I said, “Hey G!” as I took off my shoes, and when I walked into the living room he gave me a big hug and heart-melting smile. Then he was down to business, patting the couch beside him, summoning me to partake in some Elmo watching.
Yes, G is obsessed with Elmo. And I’m OK with that. Just no Barney or Teletubbies. I can only handle so much. I have my morning shows I like to watch too, so I understand the importance of Elmo. I limit him to one Elmo video in the morning, and one in the afternoon as a last resort though.
And then it was time to get dressed for the day. We had places to go. He wanted to grab my keys and take a ride in Smurfette as soon as he saw my car sitting outside (after Elmo, of course), but I explained with no success that he has to wear clothes before we can leave. This Friday he didn’t want to get out of his moose footie pjs. I can relate. I have many days when I’d rather stay in my pjs. And his pjs are cute. They also have a zipper, and he loves zipping up as soon as I zip down. It was quite the scene.
Then, just when I declared victory with getting the crazy boy dressed, he took his socks off and hid them. Actually, he didn’t hide them. He put them in the dirty clothes hamper because he was done with them. At least he has mastered what most men haven’t figured out yet.
Our outing included running Aunt Mel’s errands in Davenport, but I sprinkled in some fun. We ate mac and cheese at Noodles, and also made a Whitey’s stop before going home. And, we looked at the pets in PetSmart. While most kids I have been around like to pet animals, G prefers to stick his face right up to theirs and let them lick his entire face. And, note to self, he will stick his hands in the fish tanks, even when you are watching him. He’s so sly.
I’ve concluded that G is my good luck charm when shopping. Maybe it’s his cute smile, maybe it’s my disastrous disposition with trying to juggle a toddler with everything else, or maybe it’s both. People are so nice to me when I have him along. Sales people sign me up for drawings without me asking. (And I won!) A lot of people smile and say hi.
Since G has blonde hair and blue eyes, nearly everyone thinks he’s my son. But I can’t cheat. I tell them he’s my nephew. My sister did all the work with carrying and delivering him.
G took a nice, long nap after our outing. Since I had to bring him in from the car when sleeping, I let him snuggle up with me on the couch. Pretty sure putting him in his bed solo would have meant an abrupt end to nap time. As he lay there, I couldn’t help but thinking it wasn’t long ago when his tiny little body fit neatly from my shoulder to my waist. He’s growing so fast!
When G’s mom and dad came home, we all had dinner and recapped the day. I love sharing photos, videos, and tidbits at the end of the day. The photos and videos are becoming tougher to capture though because G is now obsessed with my iPhone. 20 months, going on 20 years old.