(Editor’s Note: The following column was a reprint from this week 10 years ago.)
Watching sports with my kids is always an entertaining experience.
Beckett, 5, actually gets quite excited watching sports with me. It’s just on a limited basis because his attention often turns to something else a little more fast paced, such as moving a dining room chair to the center of the room so he can try and hang on the chandelier that has been all too inviting his entire life.
Baseball is an appropriate example given the season. He will watch a few pitches and then find something else to get his attention, but he always keep an eye on the game and his favorite thing is to recite the score loud and often.
Last weekend he went to the bathroom in the middle of an inning. When he returned, he asked, “did the Orioles get a touchdown while I was gone or the Blue Jays?” Before I could answer him, O’s slugger Chris Davis fouled off a pitch down the first base line and he said, “yes Crush made another touchdown.”
When I said no and tried to explain how baseball was different than football, he seemed initially like he got it, only to later inquire about how many points the Orioles got for that touchdown.
For Beckett, all he really cares about is the score and if my team is winning. When we are, he’s content. When we are not, he wants to just turn the game off and go swimming.
When it comes to sports on television with our youngest son, Carson, 3, I have learned caution is best because he likes to act out whatever sport is on television.
It happened during football season when he would out of the blue just try and tackle me from behind and start pulling me to the floor with all his might. When I didn’t get it at first, he fetched a Ravens helmet for me and a Star Wars helmet for himself.
While I was checking the score of the Orioles game last weekend in between episodes of Doc McStuffins, Carson immediately sprinted out of the room to a chorus of “no running inside” of course. I figured he just had no interest in baseball and had something else in mind.
He returned to the room with a basket full of balls and began firing them at me. It was a proud moment until he fired an actual baseball that had somehow snuck itself into the kids’ toys.
No major damage, though, just yet another ding in the wall.
I quickly turned the television back to Disney Jr. It was safer.
The house has reached its maximum load of stuffed animals.
Carson, 3, no longer sleeps in a crib, but we do utilize it as a holding area for all the various stuffed animals that we have accumulated over the last five years.
Beckett has two small stuffed animals that stay in his bed all the time. I don’t think he actually needs them or even cares they are there, but there’s really no reason to take them away at this point either.
Carson, on the other hand, loves his stuffed animals, seemingly every last one of the 40 or so that are in his room. Everything from penguins, bears and dogs to frogs, snakes and rabbits call his room home.
While we have the crib to contain them, he cannot stand when they are in there. That’s why invariably by every morning he has removed them and they are either on his bed or strewn across the floor. He trips and falls over them constantly, but throws a fit when we try to put them elsewhere.
To me, it’s time to start weaning him off all these stuffed animals, but there are indications that could be easier said than done.
Just when I thought it was safe to start removing some of them I found Carson the other morning sprawled out on his back asleep in his bed with Winnie the Pooh under one arm and Tigger the Tiger under the other.
He carried them around all morning like a new bond had been developed overnight. I didn’t even know where to start with the questions on that newfound affection, but I certainly knew better than to try and separate them at that point.
While they have no fear of some things, both kids are scared to death of insects and flies.
Beckett and Carson will both go headfirst down the staircase if Pam or I are not there to remind them they can’t, but let a fly buzz around either of their heads and they both squeal like babies.
Beckett and Carson each think nothing of going down the tallest slides at Jolly Roger, but both have aversions to playing on anything that they have seen an ant crawl on in the past.
Both kids find it fun to try and race a vehicle driving down our street while balancing on the edge of the sidewalk. However, if a lady bug is found on a swing, they scream in fear it’s going to bite them.
Both kids will pick up a horseshoe crab or sand crab found on the beach, but they will run away with reckless abandon if I try to show them a spider in a web.
Neither kid has an aversion to heights at all, but if either sees a bumble bee they will run inside and seek shelter immediately.
Boys will be boys, I guess.