Wednesday, May 2, 2012


There are so many things that as adults we can do that we take for granted. Things that we have been doing for so long that we could hardly remember not being able to do them. I have very vague memories about learning how to tie my show laces. So vague in fact that I have no clue who taught me or at what age I learned to do it. I just know that if my laces are untied I can can do them before my face meets the pavement.

I believe that children should learn at their own pace. As parents your mother and I try to keep you challenged, allowing you to push yourself to be better. Being that you are our child I know how stubborn you can be. Don't even think about arguing about that one. Stubborn as mules we Santos are. We do keep an eye out when you are in the mood to experiment or want to learn something and then the pushing begins.

Although you are almost turning 5 in a couple of weeks we had not really pursued you learning how to tie your laces. Sooner or later you were going to want to learn. Last week your mother made a comment and heard you mention that you would like to learn. I took off my hoodie and showed you what you needed to do to tie your laces:

  1. make a bunny ear with your right hand, and pinch it with your left hand. (since you are right-handed this works better than pinching it with your right)
  2. with your right hand pick up the other lace and put it over your left thumb
  3. bring the lace down and around your left index finger
  4. push the lace through next to your left thumb
  5. pull both bunny ears
In my haste and desire to teach you I hardly noticed that you were hungry and salivating at the dinner plate your mother put in front of you. I looked to the right and got "the look" from your mom that said to stop. I quickly repeated the instructions and proceeded to have dinner with my wonderful girls.

After dinner I told your mother that in a week you would be tying your laces. She reminded me that we had to make sure that you kept practicing or it was not going to happen. Busy as life has been, me not feeling well, and us having so many other things to work on that we did not practice. I was going to have to eat crow since you were not going to be tying your own laces.

Then this morning...

Pressed for time and trying to get you to school on time I asked you to put your sneakers on. I said I will tie your laces as soon as I got out of the shower. However, a light bulb went on in my head. I said "why don't you put them on and try to tie them, if you need help I will do so after my shower." You then asked me "don't you want to watch me do it?"

Here is where most parents, dealing with the hustle and bustle of life, mess up and don't take the time to enjoy the small pleasures that life offers us. I decided to watch. In complete disbelief I watched you perform the instructions I had given you a week earlier flawlessly. In less than a minute you tied your right pink Converse. Maybe a fluke. I was not going to celebrate prematurely. Then you quickly moved on to the left pink Converse. This time faster than before you executed the instructions as if you had always known how to tie your shoelaces. 

The hollering and celebration ensued!

My baby is growing up. Small little steps. I am most amazed at how much dexterity you showed with those laces. Truth be told I was more impressed with the way you remembered my instructions a week later when I was sure that you were not paying attention to me. With every passing day you surprise me with how smart and capable you are. I am looking forward to our next challenge, to our next achievement.

Oh yeah here is a video of the second time you tied your laces...