# 2

Gabriel, unlike his big sister, is rather interested (understatement) in doing things for himself. I don't mean to say that Nora's lazy or overly dependent, but let's just say she could choose to have people dress her head to toe while she was still lying in bed in the morning? Yeah, she'd choose that. Her brother, meanwhile, has truly adopted the role of second child, attempting everything on his own because, first of all, he sees the rest of the family doing it, and second of all, because, face it, sometimes we don't have time to deal with his non-essential needs; so we'll find him catapulting himself into his high chair when he's hungry, trying to put his own socks and shoes on (and failing, and then throwing himself on the floor, protesting the sheer agony of life) and taking his own diapers off from time to time (my least favorite).

His longings for the "grown up" life extend to what we're eating, drinking and watching sometimes, too, which is why he's had his fair share of juice already (whereas I got away with giving Nora only water and milk for a long, long time) and why he knows all the Dora characters. And possibly some of the "Downton Abbey" ones, too. I mean, maybe.

His latest obsession is coffee, and he'll saunter over in the morning, point to my or J's mug and say, "Mommy's coffee," (or "Daddy's") and then he'll continue, nice and quiet and smiling, trying to charm your ass off, "Have some?"

And I'm like, "You're adorable. No way." And, because he's 22-months-old, the pleasant demeanor disappears just like that. What comes next is more along the lines of, "Have some?! MOMMY! HAVE SOME?!"

Which might work in some circumstances. Hey, sometimes you've gotta pick your battles. But I'm not going to give a baby any coffee, so this isn't one of them.

So I was completely amused to discover Gabe behind the living room armchair the other day - the space has been designated his "house," and even approved of by Nora (her house is behind the guitar stand, prime real estate I guess so she doesn't care) - playing with a plastic tea set. He was making pouring noises as he tilted the tea pot over a cup, then pretending to drink.

I leaned in close (but made sure he didn't see me watching him) and was just in time to hear him saying solemnly to himself, "Gabey's coffee."

Try cloth diapers

And we're OFF! I admit that I cheated a little with this one because when I wrote my summer goals I'd already purchased a few cloth diapers and there is no way I wasn't going to try them. But hey, everyone needs a little freebie now and then. Like when you put "take a shower" on your to-do list, knowing full well you're about to take a shower.

But this item was more complicated than taking a shower. And, um, involved less getting nice and soapy and clean and more washing my hands VERY THOROUGHLY because I just dealt with a cloth diaper that had some things in it. You can read my account on the Motherland blog.

It's not disgusting. Honest.

Twenty-four summer goals to go!