Monday, March 26, 2012

The Man Has A Sense of Propriety

Propriety (n.) conformity to established standards of good or proper behavior or manners.

 (There, Andi.  now you don't have to look it up.)
Kole is all of 19 and a half months old and his sense of propriety astounds (and annoys) me.  Although technically a toddler, I still call him a baby.  But, lately, he's been acting less and less like a baby and more and more like Mr. Manners.  That sounds really too nice.  More and more like Mr.  Everything-Has-To-Be-Just-So. 
For example.  Yesterday, we got back from Idaho Falls and played at the playground until dinner time.  All is usual.  Ken took Koley upstairs to change his diaper while I whipped up some noodles and sauce for the tyke.  Ken, in his fatherly wisdom, didn't put pants back on Kole.  Figuring bath and bed immediately follow dinner and why go through the hassle.  Let the kid run in his diaper for a bit.  Ken carries Kole downstairs in a diaper and a T-shirt.  As soon as Kole's toes hit the floor he starts crying.  Since he's our only child (and relatively spoiled) we both rush over to him.  "What's wrong?  What is it?  What do you need?"  Sobbing, Kole points to his legs and says, "Pants."  Really?  Yup.  He wanted to have his pants on.  He didn't want his chubby squeezable legs exposed.  Especially at the dinner table I presume.  One can't dine without pants.
Another.  Anytime I get Kole ready to go outside he starts chanting, "Coat.  Coat.  Coat."  Even when I tell him it's warm out and he doesn't need a coat. 
He responds, "Oww-side?" 
"Yes.  We're going outside." 
With raised arms and eyebrows he says, "Coat." 
So I grab a light jacket and help him put his arms through.  Figuring that's more than enough warmth for 70 degree weather.  I head for the door only to turn around to find Kole has not moved. 
"Come on, Koley!" 
 He stares at me for a few seconds (to be sure he has my attention) and then says, "Zip."
Let's continue.  Kole, like all babies, has a highchair.  It would be oh so oh so easy to put a handful of cereal or GoldFish on there with a sippy cup of milk and let him have a snack.  But not with Kole.  I set him in his chair and he chimes, "Snack?"  "Yup!  I'm getting you a snack."  And I reach for some crackers.  As I am pulling them out of the box and getting ready to place them on his highchair tray he starts crying, "No! No! No! No!" 
"What?  You don't want crackers?" 
"You don't need a bowl to eat crackers."
"Pate."  (plate.)
"You don't need a plate to eat crackers."
I try to conceal my eyes rolling and get him a bowl.
Why does he need a bowl to eat crackers?  I thought regular babies just eat stuff off the floor but not my son.  He wants to be in his chair with a bib on and his crackers served in a bowl.  I was lucky he didn't ask for a spoon or a proper table setting. 
He likes things "just so."  And he likes them done the right way.  He won't go outside in bare feet.  He likes his hair parted on the left side.  He doesn't like it if his clothes don't match (he just keeps staring at himself... like he knows something is off.)  He insists on being covered in a blanket if there is even a small chance he'll fall asleep.  Koley asked for rice, Ken made Quinoa, thinking Kole wouldn't know the difference.... time elapsed... Ken made rice.   Kole wants to wear a hat if it's sunny to keep the light out of his eyes.  He prefers his hands to be washed half way through his meal (as well as at the end) if he gets too dirty.  I'm expecting he's going to want fancy umbrellas coming out of his sippy before long.


Poulsen Family said...

You just described Max to a "T". We call it OCD at our house. Sometimes I really wonder if Max has a serious problem, but then I remind myself it's the stage they go through as a toddler. Now if he is still acting like this when he's 10, we're in trouble!

Brett and Tiffany said...

It might be the oldest child syndrome. Conner, our olderst, had to always have his shoes lined up just right. They couldn't be crooked at all...some things he is more laxed about as time goes on, but some he still likes "just so"!
I always thought I did this to him...because he was the oldest and had time to help him do things "just right"! Good luck! It is funny how they all have their little "quarks", but hey, we do too, don't we?

Chris and Dani said...

Yeah, I'm going with oldest child syndrome. Our little guy has to have everything "just so" too. He especially can't handle being "messy". His hands can't get wet or messy. He has to clean his hands with a paper towel all through a meal. If they are even wet, he gets upset. What's embarrassing is when we go to the grocery store and he won't stop yelling "Paper towel! Paper towel!" because his hands are dirty from his snack that I gave him to keep him quiet in the store.

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Juli said...

That's got to be an only child thing. I had mine so close together, I didn't have time to dote on them too long for them to care if their socks matched each other let alone their outfit.

Seriously. I'm lucky if I get them into a shower every other day.

SkippyMom said...

I have to agree the others - oldest child/only child syndrome. He has learned these behaviors and he likes the consistency. Good for him! It will be nice when the new baby comes that he will be older and able to not only do a lot of those things himself, but I bet he shows the new baby "how it's done". heehee Very sweet.

Kar said...

Oh my gosh, he is SO SMART, Pats!!! I smiled from ear to ear reading this. What a babe. What a smartie pants. Mikey is very particular, as well, and it drives me BATTY. It makes everything we do, take that much longer. Getting ready to go anywhere is a huge undertaking, because he has to wear THESE shoes and THIS jacket and THESE shorts (even when it's 40 degrees outside), or he flips OUT. It's a killer.