The What Fors

I read in Parents magazine about a new study regarding strollers.  It concluded that children should be facing their parents up to age 3.  It found that “those using away-facing strollers spent 50 percent less time talking to their child.”  I beg to differ.  Jack was obviously not part of this study.  It’s pretty hard to not talk to him.  

We walked to the silly mailbox today and the talking was non-stop.  Non.  Stop.  
The silly mailbox is a mailbox down the street that kind of looks like part of a totem-pole.  It’s a carved wooden face that is eating the mailbox.  It even has hair and a pineapple on its forehead.  When we go for walks now, we can no longer just walk around the block.  Jack insists on walking to the silly mailbox every time.  And I let him “insist” because walking more is good for all of us.  Although, it does get a little difficult when Jack is walking too…toddler pace is sometimes excruciatingly slow, especially for Casey who likes a little more speed when she’s sitting in the stroller.  
Some days though, I just want to go around the block – maybe we’re short on time, maybe the weather’s not the greatest.  Today it was threatening to rain.  Jack started off running, which is nice because it just about matches the walking pace I’d like to use.  He was unhappy when I said we were only going around the block.  I compromised and told him I’d go to the silly mailbox if he got in the stroller.  So he hopped in.  And then started talking.  And he didn’t stop.  
Before I had kids and I spent any time with toddlers (which wasn’t much), I used to really enjoy answering their questions and talking to them.  I may have even been looking forward to the day when Jack started asking “Why?”  If only it was just a day.  Or even just a stroller ride around the neighborhood.  
I guess since Jack is still talking in the 3rd person, he has also decided that the word “why” is just not sufficient.  He’s more of a “what for” kind of guy.  As in, “What is it raining for?”
So here’s a little transcript of part of the walk –
Jack:  What are the roads wet for?
Me:  Because it rained last night.
Jack:  What did it rain last night for?
Me:  Because the clouds were full of rain.
Jack:  What were the clouds full of rain for?
Me:  Ummm…because it was time to rain.  Oh look Jack, there’s the silly mailbox.
~Much oohing and aahing over silly mailbox~
Jack:  Where did Jack’s other pants go?
Me:  They were dirty so we put clean ones on.
Jack:  What were they dirty for?
Me:  Because you were chasing Tugger in the backyard and fell in the mud.
Jack:  What was Jack doing that for?
Me:  Because it’s fun to chase Tugger??  It’s hard to answer that one, Jack.
Jack:  What was the backyard muddy for?
Me:  Because it rained last night.
Jack:  What did it rain last night for?
Sound familiar?
Anyway, the “what fors” are here and they are trying my patience just a little bit.  Or maybe I just need a better explanation of why it rains.
I also have to wonder about that study I mentioned.  It says the parents spend less time talking to the kids.  I have to wonder if this is only when in the stroller or if it is 50% less overall.  Sounds like this has more to do with how chatty Mommy is than which way the child is facing in the stroller.  Or, it sounds suspiciously like a ploy by stroller companies to get people to buy new strollers in which your kids face you.  Too bad stroller companies…I already have 6 strollers and you’re not going to convince me I need another one.   
And with a few clicks of the mouse, I found someone else who doesn’t agree with the study.  By the way, one of the 6 strollers I own is shown in the photo in this article.  
  
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