Meet Sebastien. Sebastien is four and he’s my nephew.

the boys. focussed.

Last weekend (not the one where I almost died from strep throat, the one before), my sister Alicia spent the night with her two kids, Audrey and Sebastien. Sebastein you’ve met, this one is Audrey.

audrey the dragon, hallowe'en 2009 (no, she's not barney)

Please ignore the nasty, disgusting carpet on the stairs. The true extent of its horrible-ness cannot be captured in photographs or film, which I believe is a built in form of protection lest veiwers go blind. It will be burned during the renovation.

Anyhow, Alicia came over with the kids to help us pack for our renovation. I know it sounds crazy to add children when there’s work to be done, but they all entertained each other, freeing us up to really go through all mountains and mountains of stuff we’ve been hoarding on the off chance we might use it one day. I’m pretty sure Alicia chucked most of that out when I wasn’t looking. After an afternoon of purging, we were all chatting over a glass of wine cup of tea, when we heard Sebastien scream from the basement and start to cry. Since he was playing by himself, we knew this wasn’t a cousin/sister problem, our dog doesn’t bite and we didn’t hear a crash. So we just sat there and waited, knowing he wouldn’t suffer alone if indeed he really was suffering.

Sure enough Sebastein tromped up the stairs declaring that he’d been “hurt” and Mommy is needed to fix it.

“What happened?” Alicia asked.

Sebastien: I bit myself.

Alicia: You bit yourself? Really?

Sebastien: *sobbing*Yeah, I bit myself on my arm and it hurts a lot.

Sebastien rolls up his sleeve to reveal a teeth marks imbedded so deeply in his arms you could see blood through his unbroken skin

Alicia: Sebastien why did you bite yourself?

Sebastien *really crying hard now* I. Don’t. Know.

There wasn’t much to do at that point but console. Console and suggest that biting your own arm (or anyone else’s for that matter) is an experience you’re don’t need to have a full and rich life. Sebastien perked up quickly and went on to do whatever little four-year-old freaks do to amuse themselves. Thankfully no one else gotten bitten.

As it happens, there is no shortage of blog fodder that spews incessantly out of the mouths of the people to whom I’m related, and Kate did her part last night as I was making dinner.

Kate: Mommy wouldn’t it be great if food had a party in my tummy?

Me: I think it does.

Kate: No Mommy listen, wouldn’t it be so great if food had a party in my tummy and the water I drink made a great big pool for it all to play in?

Me: I think that’s pretty much how it happens sweetheart.

Kate: *laughing at me* Mooommy, that’s just silly. Food’s just crumbs and can’t have a party. Our bodies need food to turn it into energy so we can live.

Me: *silence*

Now this is not a boy-girl comparison (though it is possibly a man-boy one), since you may recall the preciousness of Kate’s “my nose hurts and it feels like there’s a booger in it” episode of two weeks ago. It’s merely an illustration of how the people around me, all day long, say things that are completely, utterly, unbelievable. Unbelievable good/hilarious, not unbelievable bad/I want to to give you to another family (although that happens too, it usually comes from my larger, bearded child).  It’s gotten to the point that I have to leave the room when Kate gets ticked off about something because I laugh and laugh and laugh (entirely at her expense), and dammit if she isn’t old enough now to get offended by it. I get it, I’d get offended too, but I’d like to see you keep it together when you see someone kick off about not wanting to have a bath because it gives them wrinkles on their fingers. Parenting is a tough business. Yes sir. (er, ma’am).