There has been a sneaky little thing happening around our home lately, in the form of the boys growing up. It doesn't happen all at once, oh no, but everyone now and then I will be caught off guard by it - the little bit of mustache fuzz growing on William's lip, the fact that hugs are still OK, but kisses are only tolerated first thing in the morning and late at night, the look on my baby Charlie's face that is no longer at all babyish, and the independence and maturity that they are both exploring and craving.
One of the ways this 'growing up' is happening is through the boys spending bits of time on their own at home. It might be just a few minutes while I run into the grocery store, or for an hour or two when Jim is home but sleeping after working a night shift. The boys generally love it, and I have to admit that it gives me a new level of flexibility that I haven't had in, oh, 10 or so years.
In celebration of it all, the boys spent the day at a St. John Ambulance course called Home Alone - they learned about what to do in case of a fire, snacks that they could prepare themselves safely while home alone, stranger danger, when and how to call 9-1-1, etc. Although I admit that the day got mixed reviews (my guys are not used to sitting in a chair listening to someone else talk for 7 hours!!) they seem to have at lease been exposed to some good information. As a family, we are going to be talking next about first aid and how to take care of those inevitable nicks, cuts, scrapes and sometimes burns that come with being a kid. I certainly hope that they never need to actively use these skills, but I do feel a little more relaxed knowing that they are better prepared.
Now if I could just convince them to slow the whole growing up thing down just a little bit more, I would be happy.