Growing up with baby

Our grandson is the jolliest baby I have ever met. He laughs, chuckles, grins and eagerly reaches out to anyone willing to pick him up. At least he did until separation anxiety hit. Suddenly he is afraid of anyone he hasn’t seen in a couple of days.
That’s when this wee lad’s troubles began with women — women who just can’t keep their hand off a cute, cuddly cheerful babe. The minutes he realizes someone new is trying to pick him up, he cries out. “You are not my momma!”
Somedays his 2-year-old sister is his biggest female problem. Sometimes she is his favorite play thing.
One afternoon I watched as his mother held him. His sister stood across the room, stared at him and began walking purposefully toward him. He noticed Sissy’s mischievous march and began chuckling, curling himself up in a ball as she approached.
“Do it again,” their momma said. Only a wink of a smile betrayed their toddler’s solemnity as she ran back and started to march across the room at her brother again.
He loves to play, but sometimes he just needs a little privacy for nap time. When he naps, she stalks his bedroom like a hawk, waiting for just one eye to blink open. When it does, she proudly broadcasts, “Basil’s awake!” scaring the sleepy boy and everyone else.
She thinks he is a Teddy bear and live baby doll all rolled up into one. He’s not always sure that is a good idea. Especially not when she grabs him in a bear hug, falls back on the bed and rolls until he is dizzy and tangled up in the sheets. Whether he wants to eat or not, she enjoys feeding him. He prefers having his momma spooning him his bowl of rice cereal. Besides his own coordination is good enough to carry anything and everything to his mouth to chew: Paper, pretzels, mommy’s hair, the cat’s tail – if it’s in his hand, it’s in his mouth.
His sister is older and gentler. At least our cats didn’t run from her during her recent visit. They allowed her to pick them up and carry them draped over her tiny arms like lush mink stoles as she toddled through the house exalting in their existence.
She would do that with her brother, if her weren’t almost as big as she is and pedaling air fast to catch up. Recently his mother proudly emailed that he was crawling, sitting up and playing by himself.
As he was figuring out what to do with his legs and arms, his sister was figuring out the correct response to, “What is your address?” Her first response was to point her finger at her clothes and said, “Dress is right here!” Once she understood her parents new word, she began responding with her street name and half the house number.
She is learning numbers. He is learning to walk. He begs to have his hands held as he builds up his muscles for the race of his life: Catching up with his big sister. It will be a while. She already recites nursery rhymes and alphabet with a childish lilt as her mother proudly basks in the glow of both her children’s accomplishments.