View RSS Feed


My Summer with Matthew

Rate this Entry
I have to say this summer blew by. I wish I could have taken more time off from work and done something special with Matthew. We did go to Sesame Place one day in July, which is a Sesame Street theme park. Matthew just loves Elmo, and he got to see him live. They put on a little Sesame Street character rock show, which was kind of cool. They even let the kids come to the foot of the stage, and while Matthew tried to touch Elmo, he never got the chance. He did get to touch the Cookie Monster.

We also went to the park a few times. He still too young to catch a ball, but he tries. I need to get him to kick a ball more often. Ducks are a good attraction for him. He knows how to “quack, quack.” Actually the big progress over the summer is his speech development. We had been worried that he wasn’t progressing on speech as he should. Boys tend to be behind on speech (who says there are no differences between genders?), but it seemed he was further behind than normal, maybe because he’s “all boy” as his grandmother says. If you remember I blogged about it a few blogs back. Well, at some point during the summer the flood gates opened. He doesn’t put sentences together yet, but he points to everything and calls (or tries to) its name. We even got him to say “truck.” He always said “car,” that was easy for him, but when it came to “truck” he wouldn’t say it. He knew the difference, but he would say “carrrr,” that is “car” but changing the vowel sound and dragging out the “r.” He would say “cahr” for car and “kerrrr” for truck. He would sit in his child seat in the back while we drove and he would point to a truck and say “kerrr. And one of us would correct him, “no that’s truck.” And he would go quiet for a second and then say “kerrrr.” And one of us would say, “no, say truck.” And he would be quiet for five seconds pondering it, and then emphatically say, “kerrr.” Then one day I came home from work and my wife said, “guess what word he learned today? What word did you learn today Matthew?” And Matthew looked up and said “twuck.”

Here he is by an old time fire engine.

I have to say the sweetest words that come out of his mouth are Dada. I can never get enough of him saying them. When I come home from work, he squeals them out, hitting a high pitch note while running to me. He’s really daddy’s little boy. He just loves being with me. Once I’m home, he’s got to be with me until bed time. Here’s a funny story, which will tick my wife off I know. I came home one night from work and Matthew went through his “dada” squeal routine and attachment. After a few minutes I tell him I’m just going up to change and I’ll be right down. Truth be told I needed to go to the bathroom in addition to changing and I like to spend a few minutes reading while sitting in the bathroom. Matthew puts on a long face and as I start upstairs he starts to cry and it builds to the top of his lungs. Well, there was no consoling so I relented and had him come up. Later that night, after dinner, my wife had to step out for a little, and Matthew observing her going toward the door says “mama.” She tells him she’ll be right back. Matthew stares and just says, “bye-bye.” And she says, “what is this? Daddy gets blood, sweat, and tears. I feed you, change you, clothe you, stay with you all day and I just get a bye-bye?” Matthew stares and says, “bye-bye.”

Here he is at a park looking like a natural athlete.

And we put out our flag for Fourth of July.

My sister was in for a few days and Matthew got to spend a little time with his cousins, my nieces. They are much older, seventeen and twelve. Oh they adored him. I can see how being a little boy around lots of older girls can be an advantage. Somehow if the genders (a little girl with older boy cousins) were reversed it wouldn’t quite be the same. The boys probably wouldn’t be bothered. I guess life is unfair. Unfortunately Matthew doesn’t have cousins his own age. On my wife’s side they are even older. But our older nephew on her side does have three children, and the two youngest are around Matthew’s age. Unfortunately they don’t live nearby. But we shall meet up soon.

In August I had three business trips on three separate weeks, which has been unusual. I hadn’t traveled like that in a long time. Whew did that take a lot out of me. These weren’t one day things, but most of the week. It did screw up my summer with Matthew. But I was able to take him to the company picnic. I took him into work and he was a natural. He is so gregarious. He’s got an initial moment of shyness, but once he gathers you’re ok he becomes an instant buddy. The ladies at work just loved him. He was swarmed and coddled. He sat at Alison’s table at her cubicle and it was as if he was having an adult conversation with her. And I must put in a good word for Audrey. I had made the mistake the day before of telling her he likes cars and mechanical things, and she brought him in two cars (from some Lightening McQueen movie or something)and a motorcycle that were battery powered. We let them zip across the floor. Matthew would watch it go and then run after it. The picnic was a washout, but we managed a couple of hours. He was one tired little boy when it was all done.

Does he look like a natural executive behind my desk, or what? (Yes, I know. I keep a terribly messy office.)

And with Daddy at the Picnic.

September 1st was Matthew second birthday. It came on the tail end of my third trip in August, but I made sure I took the first flight out and got home by mid morning.

Some pictures from the birthday.

Here he is directing which piece of cake he gets.

And just too cute with cake.

All I can say is this past year with Matthew has been the most joy filled in my life.


  1. NikolaiI's Avatar
    Absolutely awesome. Congratulations and Happy Birthday to the young tyke. I often think about my own childhood and the differences in how we think as children.. imagination plays a much greater role and life is so much more magical. I don't know what my point was, but maybe just that you have that in your life. And well - happy for you!
  2. Buh4Bee's Avatar
    What a fantastic blog! I remember the days when you were still overseas bonding with Matthew. Seems like so long ago. Sounds like his words are coming. Like Bee (Jersea was eaten by a monster) says about the same words. He does the same thing when we correct him. He waits and tries to say the new word. Sometimes it comes out and sometimes it doesn't.

    He has become so handsome with his curls. Love the NY outfit. I believe having a baby does make a person feel happier. Ours is the greatest joy. Thanks for sharing.
  3. TheFifthElement's Avatar
    Sounds like everything is good with you guys. It's nice to hear how things are going, and the pictures are very cute and you also sound very happy, which is really nice. You all make a nice family.

    But really Virgil:
    Boys tend to be behind on speech (who says there are no differences between genders?)
    come on! My son's speech development was more advanced than my daughter's (and he is still much more articulate), and my granddaughter, Freya, who is only a couple of months younger than Matthew barely speaks at all. The problem with generalisations are that they are just that, they don't apply to all. So you might well say "some boys' speech development is behind girls', and others' isn't" and that would be much more accurate. Matthew's an individual. If his speech developed slowly, that's all there is to it. Considering his early situation, it's not really so surprising. Don't worry yourself about nothing. He's uniquely himself, and long may that continue

    He seems like a great boy, and you guys are great parents too. You can tell that, by how proudly you speak of him and how happy he looks. A heartening blog. Thanks for sharing.
  4. zoolane's Avatar
    I will reading soon eyes bit blurr and being long day.
    Thank you comment on mine. x
  5. The Comedian's Avatar
    Great blog -- parenting is really fun, and it's always a joy to me to read/see others enjoying time with their kids as you and pussnboots do.

    This line cracked me up: "Truth be told I needed to go to the bathroom in addition to changing and I like to spend a few minutes reading while sitting in the bathroom." Ha!
  6. Snowqueen's Avatar
    You guys had a great time it seems! Matthew is growing fast and now he resembles her mum. Don't you think so?

    It really is a great blog with great pictures. Thanks for sharing.
  7. zoolane's Avatar
    Great blog, Matthew such sweetie and adoreable.
  8. Scheherazade's Avatar
    So nice to hear from you, Virgil!

    Matthew looks so healthy and happy... and seems to have had a great time on his birthday too!

    Hope he has a wonderful year.
  9. yuka's Avatar
    So nice to learn about Matthew again, I particular love the second pic, a adorable little athlete.

    Boys tend to be behind on speech
    I was told that before and I believe that is the case.

    he likes cars and mechanical things, and she brought him in two cars (from some Lightening McQueen movie or something)and a motorcycle that were battery powered
    Seems all boys love cars and trucks, my son is very fond of cars and big trucks especially fire trucks, also he likes Lightening McQueen so much that he has watched the movie many and many times.
  10. qimissung's Avatar
    He is adorable! I think I like the last one, where he's poking at the cake.

    Sounds like ya'll had a fun summer. Remind pussnboots that it's always the way-kids do seem to like daddy better-precisely because he's not around all the time. I'm sure he and she have a close and loving relationship, too.

    The movie was "Cars." It's cute. Watch it with him some rainly day. I bet you'll like it, too!

    Thanks for the update, Virgil!
  11. Virgil's Avatar
    Thank you Nik, Buhbee, Fifth, Zoo, Comedian, Snowqueen, Zoo, Scher, Yuka, and Qimi.

    Fifth - I've never seen the statistics, but I've heard from quite a number of people who said boys tend to be behind in speech. Of course that doesn't mean all boys, and your son must have very good speech skills. Is he the younger child? Younger siblings do much better with speech since they pick it up from their older siblings.

    Sounds like everyone has heard of the movie "Cars" but me.
  12. qimissung's Avatar
    There's nothing wrong with a generalization; making them is something we teach in English, along with an inference and drawing a conclusion. Perhaps if you had qualified it a bit more with a "usually" or "often?" I don't know. There are generalizations, and then there are exceptions to the rule-like Fifth's son.

    Fifth's son is the oldest, by the way.
  13. Themis's Avatar
    I can't believe, I missed this! Sometimes I get an email alert when you blog, Virgil, and sometimes I don't. I haven't yet been able to find out how it works exactly. Anyways -
    Matthew is so very cute! He's really getting prettier and prettier!

    Oh, and because you mentioned, it might not be as nice for a little girl with older boys: Not true! I've got many happy memories of my own childhood with boys, who were lots older, carrying me around and on one occasion my brother invited a friend who ended up playing with his little sister instead - much to my dear brother's consternation, I assure you. ;-)
  14. Virgil's Avatar
    Thank you Themis. I'm glad you found it. Sounds like you had boys around that weren't so self centered when you were young.
  15. Themis's Avatar
    @Virgil: I think the secret is: they all wanted a little sister, too!