A Kiss on the Forehead

Encountering Heaven in Every Day Life

Multitude Monday: Buddy Bear Edition :)

Okay, so generally when I do a Multitude Monday post, it’s a post about the things, big and small, that I’m thankful for. But over the last week and a half since we’ve moved to the city, I have been so blessed to watch the world through my 18 month old’s eyes. He was born in the beautiful smoky mountains, and really, all he’s known is simple, country living. Having lived in the big city before, I’ve always kind of considered myself to be a “city girl” (I grew up in suburbia and went to college in the heart of downtown Chicago). I hadn’t thought about it before we moved, but for Buddy Bear, most of what’s around him now that we’ve switched to a VERY different, Urban terrain is completely new and foreign to him. He’s a country mouse in the big city, and everything, even the things that I take for granted, are new, big, and exciting. Beyond that, but he’s at an age where he’s able to express his excitement about the new things. It is SO fun to watch. So here you have, a list of what I’ve noticed HE might say he’s thankful for today.

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1. Cars. The boy LOVES cars, and in the city, there’s NO shortage of them. You would think that would be something he gets used to quickly. But no. Every time we go outside, he’s pointing, saying “Cah. Cah. CAAAAAHH!!” and giggling.

2. Dogs. Yes, you run into more dogs in the city than in the country. And yes, he wants to stop and look at each and every one of them.

3. Escalators. HOLY. COW. The child LOVES escalators. This morning we went to Target. Without thinking about it, I stepped on the escalator with him in my arms. You would have thought we were on a space shuttle ride to the moon. He squealed and laughed and marveled as we went up, up, up. He looked at my feet again and again, simply tickled by the fact that mommy wasn’t walking, but it sure felt like it. As soon as we got off, he started signing for “more”. So, as a treat, we rode the escalator up and down four times on the way out of target. Child’s day = made. And yes, he cried when we got off for the last time.

4. Free Museum Thursday. There is a nature museum about 15 minutes away that is free on Thursdays. They have frogs, snakes, fish, plants, a giant water table for kids to play in, an indoor playground with tunnels and slides, and best of all, a butterfly exhibit. He chased butterflies for almost 45 minutes last week, flapping his arms and pointing and squealing. Complete BLISS.

5. Buses. See #1, but magnify the excitement times 1,000.

6. Squirrels. Again, Buddy Bear has always loved squirrels, but this is a completely different animal. It’s kinda gross to think about, but city squirrels are MUTANT-HUGE. Plus, the window in our livingroom overlooks a park, and the window also has a gate on it. The squirrels like to hang out on that gate in the afternoon, so really, it’s like going to the zoo without leaving our living room.

7. Airplanes.  We live not too far from one of the busiest airports in the nation. Planes are constantly coming and going. Every time we step outside, his eyes are on the sky and he always finds a plane and waves “buh bye!” as it disappears.

8. White noise machine. A downfall of moving from the country to the city is that the city is LOUD. When you are born into a country environment and only ever sleep in silence, moving to a big city is a HARD adjustment on your sleep routine. Solution = a white noise machine. Sleep magic.

9. Trains. See #1 and #5.

10. Lights. We live in a part of town that has a LOT of blinking lights. Think Vegas on a mini-scale. Every store and shop has neon flashing. This is mesmerizing to a toddler.

11. IKEA.  Need I say more?

12.  Shopping Malls with play areas.  Not only did we move from the country to the city, but we moved from the south to the north. It’s COLD. It’s wet. It’s snowy. For a little guy who’s used to going outside and at least walking 2x a day outdoors, being inside all day long can be kind of a bummer. THANKfully, most shopping malls now have those little indoor play areas. And we don’t live too far from a shopping mall. Fabulous.

13. People. Not surprisingly, my child is a social being. He is fascinated by people, and will smile and talk to everyone around him. In the city, there are people EVERYWHERE. Not only that, but in the specific area we are living, these people are more than just white Americans. This area is INCREDIBLY ethnically diverse. I remember the first time he saw someone with a much darker skin tone than his own. He stared for a LONG time. I am so grateful he is in a place where he is being exposed to people of LOTS of colors, languages, dialects, and mannerisms. What a neat experience for a little kid. 

14. Sirens. To adults, these can be quite annoying. But to a toddler boy??!?!?!?!!! Hearing a firetruck, police car, or ambulance siren is cause to throw down the blocks you are playing with and RUN to the window, point, and squeal. 

15. Tall buildings. I know, that’s a given living in a city. But I forget that he hasn’t ever seen anything of this magnitude before. Outdoors or in the car, he is always wide-eyed and looking up. Precious.

16. Elevators. Kinda like the escalators, but really, we all know elevators are COMPLETELY different. We went to Michaels the other day, and it was on the fifth floor of the building we were in. We climbed onto a crowded elevator on the first floor and provided entertainment for each of the other 15 people on that elevator the entire way up. Every time the elevator door opened, he yelled “OOOOOOOOHHHHH!!” and everyone laughed. Then the door would close and he would watch intently until it opened again. Magic. Pure magic.

17. Close proximity to Grandparents.  This isn’t because we’re in “the city” so to speak, except that this specific city is only 2 hours from my parents. We spent Christmas time with them, and Buddy Bear LOVES his grandparents. It’s so nice to be close again so he can start to develop more of a relationship with them.

18. Snow. Again, more because we went from south to north, but snow fascinates this kid. He doesn’t like it once it is on the ground but when it’s snowing outside, he is enthralled. Hands up in the air, squealing.

19. Swimming lessons. We live close to the YMCA. This kid LOVES water. And at the YMCA, swimming lessons are affordable. So Saturday mornings, he gets daddy time and water. It’s awesome.

I could probably go on and on… looking at the mundane through the eyes of a child is INCREDIBLE. NOTHING gets old. EVERYTHING is exciting and new. I am enjoying this fresh perspective in the crazy chaotic world of city living, and I’m so very thankful for the little man who is helping me to remember to take time out for the small things. 🙂

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