We were recently having dinner at a restaurant with some friends, and near the end of the meal an older couple came over to remark how well behaved Everett was the entire evening. They mentioned how he didn’t fuss the whole time they were eating. It is always nice to have people letting you know how awesome your child is in public. I then mentioned to our friends how Emily and I can’t really take credit for his well-mannered behavior. I confessed there wasn’t really anything we’ve done, and he is just an easygoing kid that makes us look really good as parents.
My friend wasn’t willing to swallow this show of modesty. She urged us to take a smidge of credit. She brought up how we’ve exposed Everett to many different things and take him to many different places.
I started thinking about the way we’ve raised Everett these past ten months. I can see how certain actions could have played a minor role in shaping the type of boy he is today.
After one week in this world, Everett was bundled up and put in his stroller and we went for a family winter walk. It was a pretty cold day and I’m sure some people peeked out their windows and thought, “Oh there goes those crazy Spicers turning poor Everett into a babysicle.” Ten months later, Everett absolutely loves going on walks, and he is comfortable being outside in almost any weather (we do opt to stay inside for blizzards and monsoons).
We have had some mom and dad only date nights. We’ve also had several family dates. Everett was only two weeks old when he was in his first restaurant, and despite it being a lunch hour rush, he spent most of his time napping in his bassinet. We now get showered with compliments over Everett’s amazing public behavior.
Everett takes many trips out of the house including long visits to the mall. Everett handles his mom’s store hopping much better than I do. She also buys Everett way more toys when dragging him around though.
We’re so comfortable taking Everett out in public that we already took him to his first circus. One audience member was distracted for a short time by our two bouncing heads in front of him. There was also one “quiet” period in the show that Everett felt was the best time to let out a squeal of delight. We survived the whole show without being kicked out, so I consider it a victory.
I still am wary of taking any credit for Everett’s easy demeanor. I do know that Emily and I haven’t compromised our lifestyle too much. Everett has been a great companion on all our adventures.