It’s a very arbitrary milestone, 493 days, but it’s how old our son is at this very moment. Someone asked me the other day how old he was and I replied “Just over 16 months. . . so, a year and 4 months. . . . almost a year and a half”. I’m not sure if he was still listening at that point, but I began to think about the randomness of milestones and markers that we assign in our lives – and the thousands and thousands of days I’ve been able to wake up in the morning to learn a few lessons along the way.
For Little Guy, we can literally see the advances that are happening every day – all 493 of them. Today he said the word “slide” because he wanted to go on the slide again. . . . and we were kind of blown away. It’s pretty amazing knowing that tomorrow, it will happen again. We expect it. We can’t wait for it.
In between trips down the slide, I’ve been working on a few projects that Studio m Architecture + Design has going on. I’ve been fortunate that my new firm has been gaining a bit of steam and I actually have 4 active projects now including a new home and a large student housing renovation for a local University. My days are filled with the continuous melding of toys and design drawings, playtime and office time. It’s refreshing and reassuring knowing that it’s working. When I need to give up designing wooden block towers in favor of designing more permanent structures thru the firm, I can very easily shift focus and get into it – thanks to the support we have in place with Little Guy. I’m busy. It’s go, go, go.
I start to wonder if I’m keeping up. He’s learning something new every day. Motor skills, ABCs, jumping up and down (both figuratively. . . . . and even more literally when he wants something extremely important like a piece of mango or to splash around in the bath). I’m busy, but what am I learning? What new information do I have today that I didn’t have yesterday? I have the resources, the contacts, and the drive to acquire new knowledge, but why is it that a 16 month old is advancing at a much faster rate than I am (I realize that he’s in a different developmental stage than I am, but why should that be an excuse?). It’s inspirational, really, to see such advancements in his life – every day – and I don’t even know what tomorrow will bring, I just know it will be amazing. Why don’t we have that? Why can’t we seek out new knowledge or experience something new every day? It could be the case that it’s literally just a decision to be made. Can I decide that, yes, starting tomorrow. . . no, today!. . . . I will dedicate time to better myself or experience something new. . . every day? It seems very intimidating. . . overwhelming. . . . impossible?
I have a bit of an edge. As an Architect, I’m in a good position to constantly research a new material or building methodology. It’s easy to get online and find. . . anything really. . . like How to learn Something New Every Day. That will, no doubt, advance my professional life, but that could also just be considered my job. I want to show my son the world. I want him to experience new things. I can teach him the things I know, but how great would it be to explore new things together; seek out knowledge that neither of us have? What’s the best way to make a paper airplane? That sounds like something DesignAdad should know. I’m sure he’ll be teaching me some things as well.
The Polish company Ringo produces cardboard play sets that are “durable and difficult to destroy”. Obviously they have not spent a day with Little Guy, but nonetheless, it looks like an interesting concept. This could be a fun toy to learn how to set up streets and city blocks. . . . or maybe just step on and reflatten. . . .
Check out Ringo