Monday, August 29, 2011

Darian's Turn!

It's Darian's turn!

Darian is Collin's 9-year-old son from his first marriage.  I've known him since he was 4 and Collin & I have basically been raising him together since he was 5. He's a good, smart kid and he's in the 4th grade advanced class at school. He may be guest posting at some time this year as his teacher is currently teaching them all about the internet and blogging.

Like I did with Piper, I'm more or less going to let his scrapbook pages help me to tell his story. As before, it may be difficult to read some of the journaling without enlarging the page, so I will be following each layout with its journaling in quotations before moving on. I'm also going to preface this with the disclaimer that I really need to get a wide format printer and scanner when our budget allows. In the meantime, I'm still attempting to improve my shots of my 12x12" layouts. Bear with me here...

"After snowmobiling in Cascade, we stopped at the Moxie Java on the way out of town. Collin got his usual grande triple shot caramel macchiato, I got my usual black & white hot chocolate, and Darian got a kid's hot chocolate with whipped cream on top. He managed to promptly get all the whipped cream on his face and then proceeded to spill half of it down the side of the truck. Oops!"

At four, Darian was pretty darned cute. It was on the snowmobile trip mentioned above that we also he also talked continuously about the "Barbie doll" (abominable) snowman. He had no idea why we kept laughing.

The best thing about him was that we could pretty much get him to do, try or say anything. And don't think we didn't use this to our advantage. Talladega Nights had come out around this time and we soon had him doing the whole "I don't know what to do with my hands" bit. Hilarious. He would just bust it out randomly whenever he wanted a laugh..just slowly drawing his hands up by his face and giggling.

My brother and I also had season tickets to the local hockey games that year. Collin & I took Darian with us when we had the chance.  He got so excited at the games that he even created his own cheer, both hands high in the air, fists in "rock on" position and screaming "Go Steelheads!"

"Darian found this umbrella when we went shopping for new clothes at Old Navy. He kept asking us to buy it for him. He said we could put everything else in the cart back as long as he could have it. We didn't end up with the umbrella, but I got this cute picture of him with the object of his affection and a cute cap Collin found."

The best thing about kids between about the ages of 4 and 7 is the funny stuff that comes out of their mouths. When Darian was younger I kept a notebook in my purse to write down the funny things that he would say.  We started referring to these as "Darianisms". I'm so glad I wrote them down then. They still provide quite a laugh today.

"Dad : Do you like your teacher?

Darian : Yes.

Dad : Is your teacher a boy or a girl?

Darian : She's a girl.

Dad : And is she fun?

Darian : Yes.

Dad : What is your teacher's name?

Darian : Miss Shoemaker...but she doesn't really make shoes."

"Oh this kid has a million of them! Darian can always come up with something interesting to say. So now we just refer to his special little comments as 'Darianisms'. Never, ever a dull moment with this kid!

Collin : Look at that, I pulled the joker out of the top of the deck. That's magic...

Darian : Is Batman in there?

Collin : I don't think Batman is in the cards.

Watching Transformers during a pivotal romantic scene :

Collin : Aww...they should kiss.

Darian : Dad! There isn't time!

Completely random :

Dad, I have a good imagination...right?

(Oh yes, he has a good imagination alright...)"

"After going outside to play and then coming back in after about 2 min :

'Why didn't you stay outside to play?'

Darian : 'Because the dogs are staring at me.'

When asked about it later that day...

'Why did it matter that the dogs were staring at you?'

Darian : 'Because it made me embarrassed."   - Age 5

When corrected by Collin for calling Lydia O-Lydia :

' I don't know why you keep wanting to put an "O" at the beginning of her name."

Darian : 'Because I'm obsessed with "O"'s.     - Age 5"

"What in the world do you do with a kid like this? We were all together celebrating Darian's 5th birthday when he busted out this one. 'Wanna see my spy eyes?' What is that? Then there he is, stretching one eye this way and the other that. Not sure how that makes him a spy, but the kid's got the craziest imagination around. He NEVER stops talking and always has some crazy story to tell you. And then...right in the middle of that story...out of left field comes something else. Never a dull moment with this one."

This talking thing is still an issue. The kid just has to talk non-stop. He gets in trouble for it in school quite frequently and he has to be asked to quiet down now and then when we're driving around. He apparently just has a lot to say.

(Sorry...these 2 page spreaders are a little tough to fit in the column)

"Here we go again...standard Darian. We went out to eat at the Golden Dragon for a nice little Chinese buffett dinner (Collin is obsessed). We're all just sitting there eating and Darian pipes up, "This is how I drink!" while furling his eyebrows and wagging his finger. Welcome to left field, land of the Garner boys. Oh my...

"Oh my goodness. This may have been the funniest thing I've ever seen! We took Darian to Shige for his first sushi and I don't think I've ever laughed so hard. Not only did he grab a nice mouthful of ginger right off the bat, but he managed to put those rolls in whole into his tiny little mouth. He loved it though! I got some of the best faces and you'd have thought he was miserable, but he still likes to go back. The California roll is his favorite, but he stays clear of the ginger now."

Who has a kid that loves sushi? When I first met him, the kid would rarely eat anything but chicken nuggets and macaroni and cheese.  I think we've broken him of that bad habit. He will pick sushi every time we ask where he wants to eat.  Even better, his favorite thing to order is octopus! We typically will let him order his own California roll and then a little plate of tako (octopus) sashimi. Crazy kid.

"Darian's 6th birthday party. We had his cake inscribed : "I'm kind of a big deal" ... and he is..."

For Darian's 6th birthday we got this huge cake from Costco. He wanted the style with balloons (which were just giant piles of frosting and sickeningly sweet). Collin & I wanted to write something fun on the bottom of the cake so we thought up the "I'm kind of a big deal" from the line in Anchorman. (We're big Will Ferrell fans if you can't tell from this post.)

I like keeping track of Darian's changing likes and dislikes.  I typically will jot them down on a birthday layout, but I did things a little differently at age 6...

"At age 6 you are into...1. The movie Cars. 2. Chicken nuggets w/ honey. 3. Legos. 4. Batman (Dark Knight). 5. Star Wars & light sabers. 6. Juice. 7. Drawing. 8. Penguins of Madagascar. 9. Avenged Sevenfold. 10. Transformers. 11. Any fast food restaurant. 12. Pepperoni pizza. 13. Linkin Park. 14. Spongebob Squarepants. 15. Singing loudly in the car."

A lot of these likes still continue at age 9. And just so you don't think we're awful parents, he doesn't get to eat out at fast food all that often (maybe twice a month if he's lucky - at least with us) and we watch which songs he listens to. We try and keep him somewhat appropriately sheltered & censored.

"Uniquely You. Happy, chatty, bike rider, smart, sometimes rule follower, spontaneous, friendly, hard worker, good helper, Playstation addict, precocious, quirky, funny, inventive, inquisitive, chicken nugget lover."

I did a version of this layout for each one of us. I liked having the random descriptive words all on a page.  And I managed to make us look like crap parents again. He is limited on his video gaming action. When he's not grounded he's typically limited to about four hours a week at our house. He does manage to play more when he's at his mom's house.

"This was quite the frequent sight between ages 6 and 7. Darian was completely obsessed with Batman. He would randomly disappear only to reappear in the living room sitting nonchalantly on the couch in full Batman regalia. Never a dull moment with this child."

"I love this kid! He's so smart and imaginative. He entertains himself so easily and always has something to say. The things that come out of his mouth never cease to amaze. Many of the comments seem to be beyond his years. He keeps us laughing and smiling. Very rarely is he not happy and spunky. It's hard not to love such a cute little huggable boy."


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