This is a Test. This is Only a Test.

Do not panic. This is only a test. Failing this test, however, could result in the raising of a child into a man who throws his stapler at his boss when he doesn't get his way. It could mean that when a waiter asks if your adult son wants vegetables with his steak at an important dinner he will scrunch up his nose and scream "No Way!" Worse yet, he could spend his entire life consuming nothing but bananas, Kit Kats and chocolate milk. But don't panic. It's just a test.

Discipline. Consistency. Tired, working parent. Genius two year old. This kid is good. He gets it. I think when he runs away from me while I'm trying to get him into the car screaming, "Jesus is Alive," he knows how conflicted I am. Yes indeed, Samuel, Jesus is alive. It's wonderful. Jesus wants you to get in the car...he told me. So did Santa and the Kit Kat fairy.

Of course, you have to give props to the, "I'm not ready to go to bed" Oscar winning performance. How do they cry crocodile tears so big? My favorite these days is a response to the phrase, "Samuel, you are driving me crazy." He immediately stops whatever he is doing, smiles up at me and says, "Okay Mama...I love you. I'm coming."

I have to admit...I wish I could manipulate people like that.

Most of all, I have to admit, I finally get what my mother was trying to communicate when she would say, "Rachel, I could pinch your head off right now." Yes indeed mom.

To that two year old genius at life I say, I love you, I discipline you because I love you...and one day I pray you are blessed with a pair of big blue eyes of your own who will put you to the test.

And, PS, stop screaming, "The Bible tells me so," when I'm trying to get the Sharpie away from you. The Bible doesn't even mention open-capped markers.

Nanny Coot and the Kit Kat

One wonderful silver lining of the devastating loss of my grandfather is the relocation of my grandmother. She was five hours away, now she is five minutes away. It's wonderful. It also gives my son the opportunity to be spoiled by one more great lady.

I have to be honest with you that Sam wasn't sure what to think of Nanny Cooke when she arrived (by the way, Sam calls her Nanny Coot). That first night when I took Sam over to see her at Nina and Papa's house, I held out my hand to help Nanny sit down and was quickly stopped by a green eyed little boy named Sam who yelled, "My mama" and tried to push Nanny Coot away. I was more than a little mortified. I'm a first time mom, of course my mind raced with the life of crime destined for a little boy who started pushing 84 year old women down when he was two. But of course, the other side of the mom in you swells with emotions that this little boy who is usually too busy to sit in your lap, got jealous over his mommy. Mommyhood seems to be filled with those conflicting "that's so wrong, but its so cute" moments.

After one hour and one Kit Kat offered as a peace offering by Nanny Coot, Sam was won over. Now we go visit her several times a week and Sam can always be expected to say, "I love you Nanny Coot. (pause, wait for it) Kit Kat?" Kids are smart. Of course, Nanny Coot is happy to oblige if she can get a hug in return. Everyone has a price.

We are so happy to have Nanny Coot in our lives and so close in proximity! Sam and I look forward to many more Kit Kats with her. We love you Nanny Coot!...Kit Kat?


Just so you know...

NOTHING has been more stressful in parenting than figuring out the cup progression. Food was not this difficult. There are not that many variations on a spoon. But cups...OH HOW I HATE THEE. I have sippies with plugs, I have sippies without plugs, I have juice boxes. I have flip up straw cups, screw on disposable cups with straws, disposable non plug sippy cups. THIS is why I have a 2 year old with a bottle. I am cup overwhelmed.