Vaughn Lately


Early this morning as the sun was just barely transforming our room from black to grey I woke up to Vaughn standing next to my bed, his blue eyes wide open and his early morning (loud) whisper:

Mom. I like dragons. Do you like dragons?

This is classic Vaughn. He wakes up so bright eyed and full of ideas and questions and words and sentences and paragraphs. I doubt that anyone will ever call this boy a closed book. He wears his thoughts and his emotions on his sleeve.

He is growing up so fast. He loves being outside. Lately since Rick has Friday's off, we've been going up to Red Rocks and hiking around and climbing. Vaughn is such a good little climber. He's getting better and better at finding his way up difficult paths. We are considering getting a child harness and finding a couple of routes that he can do some "real" rock climbing on. I'm sure he would love it. Right now, Rick takes him up certain areas, and helps him along, then helps him get back down. It's lots of fun.

He loves reading. Anything with "spooky stuff" in it really makes him happy. He loves ghosts, and goblins, and pumpkins, creatures, and especially skeletons. Maybe because we just got done with Halloween.

He's so smart. This morning I took this video of him:

He says the Pledge of Allegiance for preschool twice a week. It may be my favorite thing he's learned there. Lately though, he'll make up his own versions (I pledge allegiance to the kitty of the United States of America!....One nation, under dogs...). What a clown. He makes me laugh.

One great thing about his preschool, is that I get to teach every 5 weeks. It's helped me get creative, and helped me understand what kind of activities work well for his age, and what one's don't. I've carried it over into some of the daily activities that I do with Vaughn.

One of my favorite things to do is to utilize the games that we already have, and to use them as a learning activity, disguised as fun. Here are a couple of my favorites:

Bananagrams is a fun game to play with adults, but also a great way to talk about letters and spelling with Vaughn. It's basically just a bunch of letter tiles, and if you have the game of scrabble you could use those too. Vaughn's pretty young, so right now I will just show him a letter, and then we'll talk about the sound, and then I'll have him help me find all of those letters. Sometimes I reward him for every one he can find. Sometimes I'll have him hide one of the letters, and then I'll go find it or the other way around. If there's a word he really likes, I'll have him help me find the letters to spell it. It's a great, and fun way to talk about letters, and words. We love it.

Ingenious is a favorite game for Rick and I to play. It's been great though to let Vaughn play along with us from time to time (usually after Mason is in bed). He loves playing with us, and we pretty much play like we normally would. Vaughn loves picking his tiles out, and placing them on the board, and then moving his squares on his card. It's a great way to talk about shapes, and colors, and helps him with his fine motor skills too.

There are so many other fun games up in our closet, that I'm just learning are great ways to teach, and play at the same time. The possibilities seem endless.

He loves music. Every time we get in the car, he'll tell me to either turn on or turn up the music. He's been on a real James Brown kick lately. He walks around the house saying "All aboard the night train!" Boys got soul, what can I say? He also loves this song:

This one is totally Rick's fault. I can handle about 3/4 of a total song of Gogol Bordello before I want to start banging my head against a wall, but it is cute to see Vaughn and Mase spinning, and dancing around to music they love.

Vaughn is a sweet kid. I love him to pieces. Even when he dumps all of his toys out on the floor. Even when he runs outside naked and pees on the rocks. Even when he wakes me up at 5:45 am talking about dragons.

Especially when he wakes me up talking about dragons.