If you missed this request earlier this week: if you have a blog, please leave a comment today (whether you usually do or not), and link back to your blog.  Even if you know that I am already reading you, please leave a comment or send an email saying “Yo, I’m over here.” 

Zachary (3 years), as I have written elsewhere, likes accessories.  He likes clothes, he likes colors, he likes socks.  No, no, let me rephrase that: he raises sock-choosing and sock-wearing to an art form that rivals the work of Kandinsky.  We have, on occasion, struggled with outer-wear accessories, but now that I have purchased him mittens in “candyfloss pink” he gladly dons his mittens whenever the temperature dips below 73º.

            Benjamin (17 months), on the other hand, seems rather offended that we own several types of garments, the entire purpose of which is to cover his extremities.  Nothing gives him greater glee than removing his socks, for example.  Over the summer, I left him with his grandparents.  “Don’t put him down for a nap with his socks on,” I warned.

            My mother-in-law was perplexed.  “Why not?”

            “Because,” I explained, “he gets so excited about removing them that he forgets all about being tired.”

            Nowadays, in our cold and drafty house, we do need to put socks on at night, if only as a formality.  Last night, when J snuck in to check on the boys, Benjamin had again removed his socks.  “Did you put them back on him?” I asked.

            “Why bother?” he replied.

            “Oh, he’s asleep now.  They’ll stay on for the night.  It’s not so much that he minds socks as he likes taking them off.  It is the act of springing his toes from the joint that fills him with such pleasure.”  I went in and fished out the socks and a foot.  In his sleep, the child obligingly raised his foot and held it up until I had it covered.

            Unfortunately, Ben is less sanguine about mittens.  We have tried gloves, we have tried mitts, we have tried the green dinosaur mittens that he has seen his brother wearing and therefore consecrating as the height of coolness.  All to no avail.  Every time we cover up his hands, he wails piteously.  If he cannot and we will not remove them, the wail escalates to a tempestuous lament, tears streaming down his face, mouth wide open to reveal all seven of his teeth.  People stop and stare.

            We have cried “uncle.”  We let him go without.  Since we are having rather a cold snap here, this means that lately we are mostly staying within.  However, every now and then, we do like to see the light of day.  Benjamin is particularly forceful about his desire to hit the mean streets of Southwest London, loading his panda bear into the doll stroller, then banging it against the front door repeatedly while looking at me and saying “walk.” 

            He’s not having a whole lot of communication problems.

            So, I put on three coats, three hats (with some objection from one of the heads), three sets of shoes, and two pairs of mittens.  We waddle out the door.  Twenty seconds into the walk, Ben stops.  He looks at his hands.  He looks up at me.  He holds up his hands.

            “Cole,” he says in wonder.

            I offer to put on his mittens.  Emphatic head shaking, “no, no, no, no, no.”  We continue to walk.  Thirty seconds later, Ben stops.  He looks at his hands.  He looks up at me.  He holds up his hands.

            “Cole,” he says insistently.  I suggest mittens.  He tells me where I can shove my stinkin’ mittens.  We continue to walk.  Twelve seconds later, Ben stops.  He looks at his hands.  He looks up at me.  He holds up his hands.

            “Cole,” he says piteously.  Yes, sweetie.  That’s why the rest of us are wearing mittens. 

37 responses to “FLUFFY!

  1. a universal problem in the land off toddlers….. they both sound adorable.

  2. look! it’s me! i’m reading! yeah, where you stopped is where i would have started the grumpy mommy tirade about how “you should have thought about that before you took off your mittens, mister!” BUT, i’m also the delusional woman who looked at her suddenly crying 4 month old daughter and said, “snap out of it! you ARE a grown woman!”

    stress is getting to me, honey!

  3. The Poo is surprisingly docile about hats, mittens and the like. But she cannot STAND to wear socks indoors. They must come off the minute we enter the house, or all hell breaks loose.

    Your boys sound like just wonderful little beings.
    I’m here. I haven’t commented much lately, but I am reading.

  4. Child 2 is a teenager and STILL won’t wear coat/hat/gloves unless it’s below 20 F. Of course this is the child who radiates heat so effectively we all push it away (lovingly but firmly) in the summer time and cuddle up (equally lovingly but firmly) in the winter.

  5. Oh yes . . .My sister lives in the UK . . .a transplanted Texan, who now says things like, “It’s bloody cold here!” and “This weather is rubbish!”
    I say . . .”Thank God for Texas weather, Ya’ll!”
    We’re still wearing sandals! 🙂

  6. and there it is. the utter and maddening irrationality of the toddler.

    um, i’m here reading, but then you knew that already, LOL!

  7. This is Persistence. Luckily we live in the land of eternal summer…for the most part. But it can be cool enough to need pants and long-sleeves, not just shorts and tees (her only agreed-to clothing other than Princess and Ballerina). Your end exchange? By that time I’d be so worn out from the cajoling I did earlier than when she complained I’d be a little irritatingly smug and I told you so-ish.

    Why? Why do I engage a three year old?

    Anyway your boys are precious…I love the stroller and walk demand. 🙂

    And footie PJs. What does he think of those? I can imagine…

    Using My Words

  8. yo, i do what i’m told..

  9. Well, he won’t be “cole” when you move to LA.

  10. Hello! I’m here too!

  11. He’s cute. Especially his way of asking you if there is any other way to have warm hands …

  12. Hmm. Yep. Mittenless waifs here, too. I find that it’s when the hands start to thaw out that I get the worst of the crying, wailing, gnashing of teeth. And the kids are miserable, too.

  13. Just giving out a holla, as requested.


  14. Hey Woman!

    So, honestly, I’m delurking but I just found you today. You rock and I’m linking to you.

    You want to link to me (as you requested) go here:


  15. I could write enough to fill a book about kids who take their clothing off outside in any temperature! 10 degrees and blowing snow? “I’ll just pull this stupid hood off.” 40 degrees? “I don’t need shoes. I’ll just put them over there in the mud. My mom won’t even see.” Maybe not but the neighbor got a great laugh!

    Now that the kid is an articulate 20-year-old, I know that she is *highly* sensitive to a lot of things, including how various fabrics feel on her skin or what they sound like when something brushes them. Who knew?

  16. I’m here! I’m reading!

    And, yes, I’m beginning to experience the irrational stubborness of the toddler, too. Fun. Fun.

  17. Your boys sound adorable (well, it’s always cuter to hear about a toddler being a toddler when you’re not the one who has to put his gloves on) and I agree with the above commenter that LA will solve this problem. You’re on my google reader, y’know, I’m just a poor commenter. 🙂

    p.s. I know you won’t believe me, but I think you look great in the photo, you have a wonderful profile.

  18. Aren’t they just a blast?! Some kids just have minds of their own and want to make sure they are always using them! Take care and keep those kiddos bundled up. Kellan

  19. Aw, poor Ben! Maybe he’ll finally give in so that his hands will no longer be “cole”. 🙂


  20. oh, poor lovey.
    sorry I’ve been mostly mia in blogland. I’m back. I’m reading – from over here.
    LA? huh.
    nice pic of you – and I’ll about the humanity in blogland – and everywhere, just connection in general as an antidote to post-modern life in amercia.

  21. Cute. 🙂 (saw you on the wordpress.com front page!)

  22. Fluffy is fun ; ) And so is LA, from what I understand. Although I AM surprised, yes!

  23. Hehehe! He held up his foot for you while he was sleeping? That is too cute. What a doll!

  24. oooooo fluff is cute!

  25. hi!

    over here!

    standing knee-deep in poo!


  26. hehe…thats cute

  27. Wonder if you could brainstorm other ways to keep his hands warm? I can’t, this morning, the only storm in my brain is the list of things to do (minimal, but it’s long, I really procrastinated this year). My youngest prefers to be cold, which I absolutely can’t understand, but he’s him, and I’m not, so I honor his needs.

    Does his coat have pockets? Maybe those little hand-warmer things in each pocket, then he could tuck them in whenever he needed. I used those when I was in OMG, I forgot I ever did this ’til just now, marching band.

  28. Silly popsicle toes.

  29. This is why I live in Australia. Barely gets cold enough for a jacket most of the year.

  30. MQ likes to watch Angelina Ballerina, but is mystifiied by the references to “candyfloss” he he

    and..”yo! I’m over here!”

  31. My two year old hates gloves with a passion. When I’m getting her winter wear she always says “NO GLOVES!” I don’t mind letting her have her way most of the time but on days when there’s a 20 below winchill I have a hard time giving in to her request. She’s a smart one though and has figured out a solution. I wear gloves and then hold her hands in mine to keep them warm. She seems to think it’s the perfect solution. Ay yi yi, kids.

  32. I got over a long-term hat strike by convincing my son that he looks like a meerkat in a cute beige number I bought for him. I have yet to find the glove equivalent…

  33. I loved this tail of socks and mittens. Poor Ben with his cole mitten-intolerant hands.

    (By the way, “yo, I’m over here,” though hideously behind in my blog-reading.)

  34. (By the way, I mean “tale of socks and mittens.” Clearly I can’t spell in the middle of the night.)

  35. (By the way, I meant “tale of socks and mittens.” Clearly I can’t spell in the middle of the night.)

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