It all started with his pockets. About a month ago Lil Buddy picked up a fascination with stuffing things in his pocket. Most days, his pockets were filled with toys...his favorite race car of the day, his little plastic frogs, my old cellphone. And then he came home from school one day and pulled something out..."Look, Mommy, STICK!" Why, yes, it was a stick. To be accurate, it was a large piece of wood chip from the playground that sort of qualified as a mini stick. I congratulated him on his find and thought nothing of it until bath time when I reached in to clean out his pockets and, what ho...there was a whole pocket of wood chips. Turns out he's been hoarding wood chips in his pockets and stowing them in his cubby at school...bringing some home...and even having some of them even end up in the laundry (I guess I haven't been checking all the pockets.) One night, he insisted on bringing one of his "sticks" to bed. In case you wondered, I snuck in his room after he was asleep and threw it out.
It doesn't end with wood chips. Oh no. This past weekend we went to the Houston Zoo (for the second weekend in a row, might I add) and somewhere around the zebras, he stoped dead in his tracks..."Mommy, a LEAF". Yep, it sure was. "I throw in the trash?" Well, sure OK, why not. Another three feet "Mommy, LEAF. I throw away." The thing about the Houston Zoo...it's very well kept and there are trash cans about every 15-20 feet, so I just pointed him to the next trash can along the way and so it went...until we stopped at a place where there was a pretty big collection of fallen leaves. We...were looking at the animals...he...was doing this...
over and over and over. Seriously...it's winter and all of the trees are leafless...he literally could have spent the entire day in that spot picking up leaves and tossing them in the trash. It took the promise of seeing the monkeys and going on the carousel to get him to give up throwing away leaves.
I was sure we were past the leaf fascination by the time we got around to the giraffes and we were...but then..."Mommy....a STICK!" A brand new African Forest exhibit was apparently no match for the cool new stick he found...and carried for the rest of the trip through the zoo..
What do you do when you have a cool new stick and you're standing next to a brand new exhibit that looks like a cave?
You stick it in every fake rock crevice you can try to shove it into.
His birthday is coming up and I think maybe, instead of a few new cars to shove in his pocket, maybe I'll buy a nice big ficus for his room and he can sit around and commune with it all day long...and maybe throw away the leaves when they fall off.