Given the rapid changes in technology, we had one rather large video camera attached to the TV to watch videos of Baxter's babyhood and another somewhat smaller digital video camera hooked up to watch Lyle's early days. Both cameras were substantially larger than the one we use now. Clearly it's time to put these clips on DVDs for easy viewing and safe-keeping.
At any rate, a few things were really striking. For one thing, it became clear that I remember a whole hell of a lot more about Baxter's early years than Lyle's, despite Lyle's being so recent. It makes sense; Lyle is our second child and there was a lot more going on during his first couple of years, what with his big brother running circles around us AND TALKING NON-STOP and all. I loved seeing Lyle as a baby again and remembering what a sweet little guy he was; the way he would light up with those big sparkly eyes if I so much as turned in his direction. I always said that Lyle's just happy to be noticed and it was certainly true in those video clips.
And Baxter - oooh, he was adorable! That big round Charlie Brown head and the super-pudgy body that is now long and thin as a rail! The constant movement - singing, dancing, racing through the house at top speed -- oy. I would never have remembered his 3-year old voice - so much higher than it is now, and constantly nasal due to his Bay Area allergies. (In fact, in every video clip we watched, we were all sick - I'm not even exaggerating - stuffy noses, hacking coughs...we were sick all the time there with things blooming all year 'round. Cripes, that brought back memories.)
But what was most amazing for us to see in these videos was the interaction between the boys and how incredibly sweet and loving they've been with each other since the beginning. Clips of Baxter feeding Lyle, playing with him in the bath tub, and dashing in and out from under his high chair to play peek-a-boo. He had that baby laughing so hard on a regular basis that I thought the child was going to tip over! It really helped me to appreciate how attached the boys have been from the beginning and what a loving big brother Baxter has always been. They are truly a dynamic duo.
It was also a great reminder to keep taking video clips as they get older. The fact that I simply cannot remember what it was like to parent a 4-year old and 4-month old means that I just might not remember the experience of having a 6-year old and 3-year old, either. These blogs will certainly help, but seeing the boys playing together, hearing the sweet lisping voices and giggles, and witnessing the great love between them in action - well, there's just no comparison.