Frost (5) and Wren (4 mths) like hanging out together. When Wren first came home Frost said: "Wren is so cute I just don't know what to do with him!" He liked to make faces at Wren, jump around in front of him and be generally noisy. He was particularly pleased when Wren was scared - his eyes widened and his arms flew up. It was interesting for him.
I spent a lot of time "saving" Wren from startling experiences at the hand of his brother and trying to train Frost to understand what babies like (quiet voices, slow movement and gentle touch).
Now Wren is 4 months old and he is proving me wrong. Frost stands in front of Wren and shouts loudly, leaping around like a monkey. Wren comes closer to laughing than he ever has - his mouth is wide, shouting and shrieking back at Frost, his legs peddling and arms waving in delight. Frost does a spluttering raspberry with his mouth showering Wren in saliva. Wren hoots and smiles and hoots and smiles in joy. Frost does it again. Wren sticks out his tongue and tries to hoot at the same time.
They are in the bath. Frost splashes Wren. Wren looks bewildered then kicks and hoots watching Frost the whole time. Frost drops a bath toy on Wren's belly. Wren grabs it and tries to eat it before Frost grabs it away. Wren hoots and kicks again his hands clenching and opening in the air.
They are having a good time.
Its hard to figure out how to cultivate a sense of balance for Frost - not to be too excited by Wren and expect him to play like a 5 year old but still allow this exuberance between them, this crossing of lines and not behaving like a mummy or daddy. Frost wants to rough-house and knows Wren can't but can't hold back a kind of mock rough-housing in which he does things like pillow-fight with Wren (in slow motion and holding back all force). Here is something he wrote at school. If you can't read his writing it says "MY BABY BRUTHR LOVES ME EVEN WHEN I HIT HIM WITH PILOWZ"
The picture shows Frost hitting Wren with a pillow while he is on the wedge we use for diaper change. It is a realistic portrayal.
In other news, Wren has a bumbo. He was feeling anxious about keeping up with Ramona after he saw her in her bumbo so he asked me to get him one. He loves it. It gives me lots more time to do things while he watches and looks around. He is at that stage where he feels it is very important to be sitting upright rather than leaning. If I lay him in his swing or reclined chair he suspects I am putting him to sleep or leaving him in the woods and struggles to lift up his head and lean forward. It helps to prop him up further but then he rolls sideways and has to squark his dismay. The bumbo is just great except his swollen left leg is a bit tight in it. Have to work on that on Monday.