Wednesday, August 28, 2013

louise and jack - twenty one months

when i moved to los angeles i knew only a handful of people and didn't have any friends with children. i met louise lynch and her husband jonathan while i was pregnant with elodie and they quickly became part of my los angeles family. it has been such a pleasure to watch both of our families grow together (they are expecting their second in january!) and i can't quite believe that "baby jack" is actually "toddler jack" and now i have the baby. she is from a small town in iowa and we were fortunate enough to be able to fly out last year for their amazing anniversary party (remember these photos?). i loved getting this glimpse into this other part of her heart and it made me love her and her outlook on mothering that much more. thank you for participating lu!

Jack at 21 months is balancing between babyhood and toddlerhood. I can see the dual desires and attributes of both worlds bubbling up inside of him. He has the deepest desire for independence; he is a little boomerang pulling away from me and hurdling himself in to the world, with so much passion and energy and then, in a sudden turn, wanting to be held close and cuddled, rooting himself to me, refueling and solidifying his connection before his next great adventure.

This dual nature has inspired two nicknames; The Little Viking and the Little Poet.The Little Viking revels in destruction and chaos; pulling the dogs tail, thrashing the garden, bossing around his Mama and throwing thunderous, limb flailing, head banging, object throwing tantrums, causing the afore mentioned dog to hide and myself to find the depths of my frustration (and get wrinkles). But when passions maelstrom is spent the Little Poet returns. The little poet will lay his silky titian head on my chest, stroke my face and coo “beautiful Mama, I love you Mama.” He will find the moon and point out the stars with chubby delighted fingers. He will read books, curled in my arms for long stretches of time, carefully repeating the words from Brown Bear, Good Night Moon or Children of the Forest to me. His laughter and conversations are pure sunshine and sweetness and cause me to find the depths of my joy.

Jack has never been very keen on toys and prefers to pillage the kitchen cupboards and the yard for treasures, although he does enjoy his books and his wooden blocks.) He loves to help around the house with whatever tasks we are doing, he unloads the dishwasher and he feeds the dog (a little too enthusiastically, unfortunately the dog is getting a little portly.) We spend most of our time outside, where he will happily play with rocks, water and sticks for hours. We spend a lot of time in parks, on walks and visiting our local horse stables. At this age whatever activity he is engaged in is important to him, he treats it with so much focus and respect. A lot of conflict is avoided when I remember that and don’t try to hustle him out of his play.

Another resource I utilize to help keep Jack (and the rest of us) happy and balanced is Ayurveda (ancient Indian holistic medicine.) According to Ayurveda there are three doshas (body types,) each person is a combination of all three, but usually one that is more dominate. Each dosha has positive qualities when in balance and negative qualities when out of balance; you can bring a dosha back into balance through herbs, tastes, smells, sounds, colors and other sensory elements. I have found that he responds really well to the diet for his body type (Pitta) it is so simple, no special recipes, just eliminating certain foods and adding others.

I love this age, even with its mercurial tendencies, because whatever mood he is in, he is living each moment with passion, commitment and a fearlessness that is inspiring.I have to remind myself to be present and invested, I have moments of being filled with wonder, joy and deep curiosity over the world, but he is in a constant state of that.Being around him pushes me to explore and expand my own boundaries; I have found reservoirs of love, and patience that I never knew I possessed, these, to me, are motherhoods sweetest gifts.


  1. what a precious babe and beautiful family!

  2. I have a weak spot for red heads. So cute!

  3. Beautifully written. Following her on Instagram now. Jack has the very best expressions! :)