Ta da! Here are some pictures from the kids' trip to Branson. Everyone has recovered from the flu and, so far, Finn and I have evaded it altogether. Here's keeping our fingers crossed . . . These pictures are from Jeff's sister, Michelle, and prominently feature her 7 month-old son, Bo. As you can tell, the kids couldn't get enough of him. Finn has even affectionately named his naked baby doll, "Bo" or at least that's what he calls it. I don't know if he's doing it to honor his little cousin or if he just thinks all bald boy babies are called a "Bo." Finn has developed a couple of other peculiar habits worth noting. I mention them only on the off-chance they are symptomatic of a raging but obscure mental illness that you can help me diagnose. I respect the power of collective knowledge!
Finn has a meltdown every time I remove a sweater, sweatshirt, or other second top layer. I first noticed this during our Dance Parties. During the second act (this week featuring Mika and the Killers) I usually get hot and try to take off whatever outer layer of clothing I happen to be sporting. He FREAKS! He becomes suddenly incensed and insists that I put it back on. I learned the hard way what will happen if I don't. At the hotel in Lincoln on Friday night, I was wearing a leopard-print (or maybe giraffe? --it's hard to tell) cardigan. I took it off to go to bed--but was still wearing a tank top. Finn went ballistic. He went to my suitcase and manually extracted it no fewer than three times in an attempt to get me to put it back on. When I resisted--he tried to escape the hotel room--frantically turning the deadbolt on the door and hanging on the doorknob. What the????
He does the same thing when I try to take off my Ugg slippers. My nannies got me a very nice pair of Ugg slippers for Christmas. I have worn them to a shred because my house is full of hardwood and granite floors and I hate letting my bare feet touch the floor (symptomatic of my own raging mental illness, I'm sure . . .). But, once again, Ugg slippers are not appropriate Dance Party footwear (one of our routines involves a full cross-the-room slide). If I try to take them off, he stops whatever he is doing and forcibly tries to return them to my feet. I don't understand why he takes such offense.
I don't think I'm THAT unattractive that my sleeveless arms or sock-covered feet or even my bare arms and bare feet would justify Finn's complete mortification. I dare say I look waaayyy better in a bikini than he does. I even asked Aubrey (who is sensitive not only to trends but to abnormal/embarrassing parental behavior) if she saw anything wrong with my arms or feet. She said "No" but the look on her face makes me think she might not have heard the question and that she maybe thinks I asked her to try some deep-fried octopus. Oh well. I guess I'll have to rely on my own judgment.
In the meantime, Finn has also taken offense at certain music selections. Usually, he is always game for a dance party. He is the first one on the floor shaking his little booty. But whenever he hears "White and Nerdy" by "Wierd Al" Yankovick or "Grace Kelly" by Mika he drops his toys and runs and jumps into my arms and buries his little face in my neck and refuses to look until the song is over. For some reason, those songs scare him. It cracks me up, but at the same time I feel sorry for him. Everyone should enjoy the singular pleasure of "White and Nerdy"-even Finn, poor baby!
Finally, he did one other thing recently that surprised me--but I know exactly why he did it and I approve of it wholeheartedly. A couple of nights ago I made Finn some popcorn. Usually, he picks it up piece by piece and feeds it to himself out of a bowl. However, this time, he brought the full bowl to his mouth and used his tongue to pick-up a piece (kind of like a frog or lizard catching a fly . . .) and ate half the bowl this way. Truth be known, that was Jeff's signature way of eating popcorn. Jeff used his tongue to eat popcorn twice as often as he used his hands. I doubt Finn remembers Jeff eating popcorn this way--just like I doubt Finn recalls Jeff using coasters or cleaning the kitchen--yet Finn has demonstrated these identical tendencies. Very neat to see.
Well, it's getting late and I have to prepare a presentation for work tomorrow (and I still have to clean the kitchen and switch-over the laundry and write some checks--a typical day in the life). So, until next time, enjoy the pictures and thanks again for checking in. (The pictures from top to bottom are (1) Aubrey and Regan teaching Bo how to play Nintendo DS; (2) Finn looking like Grandma's Little Angel; and (3) Jack slacking on the job--either that, or Bo's top half is considerably heavier than his bottom half).