Just Jackson!

Jackson’s teacher is cooking up something cool for the end-of-year festivities next week and he asked for baby pics of all the kids. This sent me down memory lane, as one goes from time to time, and I ended up staring at pictures of my son in various stages of his life and well, he’s just so adorable I decided to share. Each picture has a special story of course, so I am writing what I remember about that picture in the caption. If you are not into baby pics I’d skip the rest of this blog and come back when I’m having a breakdown, or trying to tear down the system, or something like that. For those of you who do like baby pics, enjoy! Ps… all this end-of-elementary-school stuff got me like, “WHYYYYYY?!” Expect a post of elementary school pics this week too.

Jackson was just a few weeks old when I snapped this. He was laying in his basinet staring at this damn bird, which I had picked up when I was pregnant because I read that babies liked colorful things. He would stare at this bird for long periods of time, and it had to come everywhere with us. His stroller, his carseat, sometimes when he would have a fit (he was colicky) this was the only thing he wanted. That or turning on the vacuum. Bizarre.
He was just learning how to stand up while holding onto things around this time, and he sauntered over to Bentley who was sleeping on the green couch in the picture. His favorite thing to hold on to was her tail! She hated it, but would usually let him, until she’d jump down and run away. In this instance she jumped down to run away and he had a FIT because he wanted to grab her tail. This is the beginning of that tantrum.
Rocks. I let him eat rocks. Listen, that’s probably bad. But he didn’t have any teeth to speak of, and it was his first time at the lake, and he had just learned how to sit up all by himself. So it was a celebration of sorts. Plus, he didn’t really eat them, he just sucked the mud off of them, geesh, leave me alone.
This was his first time at Silver Dollar City, and we were on the train. He thought it was absolutely awesome, until the train whistle blew. It took us years to get him back on it after that. When he was five he still refused to get on that damn train. It was just too loud!
This was right after his first birthday party. He had very few toys before his birthday party, then our house exploded. People kept telling me not to buy him toys because his birthday would change it all, and they were right! One of his gifts was a gift card to The Disney Store, so we took him shopping after his party and he picked out this Woody doll and it was his most favorite for years.
This is one of my favorites! I was putting make-up on (back when I still did that) and he came in the bathroom and asked to join me. So I put him on the counter and gave him a make-up brush and hilarity ensued. He loved to look at “the baby in the mirror” and tell him hello and make faces. This was one of those times.
This was another first birthday present. A friend of ours bought it and when he opened it he didn’t care about any other presents. He even had a meltdown because we wouldn’t let him stop opening presents and play on his “Mickey Plane” which he just called, “Mimmy Ma.” Not sure about the elephant hat, but this seems like it was just a normal day around our house. Daddy was at work, I was trying to do something, figure out dinner, work on homework, line up some play dates, and he was just being Jackson. I miss those days dearly.
Ahh, the old nap time routine. So he got to the point, as most little ones do, where he liked to refuse a nap. I didn’t care what happened, he knew that everyday at “nap” time he would go into his room and close the door. If he slept, cool. If not, well, we all hoped that he slept. He would scream, “Not tired” from the bedroom, throw toys, try to talk to joggers out his window, etc, etc. Then suddenly it would be quiet. I would open the door to sneak a peek and usually find this: A disastrous room and him asleep anywhere but his toddler bed. As long as he had “Cloud Blanket” he was fine.
There’s so much to say about this seemingly mundane picture! First thing, that is Bentley in the background. She had just eaten an entire box of Strawberry Frosted Mini Wheats (you can see one on his shorts in the pic). They were his favorite snack, and he brought the box out for our “picnic” which was just sitting out on the front lawn before it was going to storm that day. When he tried to sit in this unsteady chair (duck duck chair) with the entire box, he fell onto the ground and the box poured out. Bentley was there quicker than a flash, and while I was consoling a sad Jackson she ate what she could, which was most of it. I suspect she had a tummy ache later. Then there’s the red Crocs. Listen, these shoes were a gift from our cousin Alycia, who would babysit him sometimes when Jerimiah and I had night classes at Missouri State (see cup, Go Bears!). She was the only family member we had in Branson at the time, and she loved Jackson so much. She was a middle school math teacher in Branson (still is!) and she would teach him all kinds of cool things. But the day she brought him those shoes is a day that will live in our minds forever. He refused to take them off. Thus began the “red Crocs” phase that lasted literal months. Months of fighting about taking those shoes off. Months of “We aren’t going anywhere” and “They stink I have to wash them.” It was gross. He eventually could not put them on his feet anymore and that was the worst day ever. We never found another pair that he liked, and eventually he grew out of Crocs (thank goodness) but man, that was torture. Thanks Alycia! šŸ™‚
Another gift. This kid was gifted all the time! This one came from Aunt Sissy (my sister Khristi). We were visiting for Thanksgiving and she said for Christmas she wanted to buy him one of these Cozy Coupes. All her boys had one when they were little and she said it was a must have. We were like, okay, cause sure why not. Oh my goodness! It is safe to say the “Mickey Plane” was no longer a thing. This Cozy Coupe spent the next SEVERAL years in our lives, and the day we gave it away was one of the saddest days. He actually could not fit into it anymore, I think he was five years old and he tried and tried to fit into it to prove that we should keep it, but alas. By that point he had moved on to Power Wheels anyway, but still, that is how much we loved this damn Cozy Coupe. Get your kids a Little Tikes Cozy Coupe (there’s a million different cool ones out there now.) You won’t regret it! Thanks, Aunt Sissy! This is just one of about a billion photos I have with this damn car in it. I could do a whole Cozy Coupe post…
You guessed it, another gift. I think the real thing here is that we were super poor, and people felt sorry for us. Yeah, that must have been it. We were two twenty-somethings with a baby, both in college, and J was working a full-time job and bartending on weekends, so yeah, people gifted Jackson cool shit that we would never buy because we were too busy buying diapers and wipes. PawPaw bought this here John Deere lawnmower and it actually made grass-cutting and gas-chugging noises. Like for real! And this kid of mine would go out everyday that he could and “cut the grass,” even when it was the middle of winter and there was no “grass” to be cut. Also, let’s talk about this shirt. I thought it was adorable when I bought it, I mean it was like a 2T shirt, and he was a little boy, and… It’s pretty disturbing. “Lock Up Your Daughters” eww. Good thing my kid isn’t that kind of guy you need to lock up your daughter from, and I dunno, shame on me for buying it, and shame on Children’s Place for selling it. (It had to be Children’s Place because he only got new, “fancy” shit like that from the consignment store or Children’s Place sales with their 40% off coupons they mailed out.) #KnowBetterDoBetter
I stand corrected. I distinctly remember pulling this suit off the Kohl’s clearance rack the winter before this picture was taken. So the off-season shit on Kohl’s clearance rack was the actual bomb. I want to say I paid like $6 for this seersucker suit, that as you can see, ended up being his Easter attire. And this could be when his love of suits first surfaced, because this is another item of clothing he refused to take off, and he would randomly ask for the suit jacket to wear with his diaper around the house. Oh no. I did this to him. Kohl’s off-season clearance rack and me.
Seersucker suit, mount up! Another day, another cool shirt. I guess I spent all our money on punny shirts and shit. Listen, this is one of my favorite pics of toddler Jackson, not because he was sporting his suit pants and a cool shirt, but rather because I remember snapping this picture. I remember the scratch on his nose was from his own fingernails that he refused to let me cut (we had to hold him down when it was fingernail cutting time, it was a whole thing and I hated doing it) and we had just scored that bomb-ass kitchen in the background from a woman on Craigslist for $10 and it was HIS favorite, especially because he had been playing with a “kitchen” that I made out of cardboard boxes for months. I told y’all we was real poor! I love everything about this picture. It isn’t perfect, but we were and are far from perfect. He had been teething around that time (you can see his pearly whites) and we were not sleeping, but he was so happy in this picture. And his hair! Look at those curls. They were freshly washed, that’s how you can tell he was clean! Ha! His curls came out. And last but not least, we had just found out that we were pregnant, and we were about to tell the family that day. I was pregnant with Lydia when I took this picture and we had told Jackson and well, it was a good day. Our friend Melody knew how much I loved this picture and had her photographer dad blow it up for us, and print it in black and white (except for his blue eyes), and it was the cornerstone of our fireplace for many moons. It will always be my favorite.

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