Lowered Eggspectations
One Month From Three

The Ballad of Bloon & Bubby

For as long as I can remember, Ezra's been super attached to three particular loveys: two small Taggies blankers and one Taggies ball. 

As a baby, he found the first blanket and his thumb around the same time, and the colorful, jangly ball attracted his attention not long after that. Both of them immediately became necessary for him to sleep on his own. He found the second blanket as a toddler — a second blanket I brilliantly thought to purchase as a back-up to the first blanket, but not-so-brilliantly neglected to find a good hiding place for. He spotted it in a drawer, and from that day forward, he demanded BOTH blankets and the ball at bedtime.

Because he sucks his thumb whenever he holds any of them, however, we quickly instituted a rule that the blankies and ball live in his room, in his bed, and are not allowed to leave. He doesn't suck his thumb as much anymore, but he still sleeps with them, and every morning he makes his bed, folds his blankies and stacks them neatly, in their place of honor next to his ball and pillow.


(Fun fact! One of the blankies is now an imposter replacement blankie. We left one blankie behind at the hotel after our first trip to Williamsburg. Ezra seemed to take the loss in stride so I opted not to contact the hotel about it — I figured it was getting to be about that time to think about saying goodbye to the blankies anyway, blah blah, leave it be, better parenting through lazy inaction! 

Several months later I found him quietly sobbing over his one blankie, and he asked me why the hotel hadn't sent his blankie back yet, why did the hotel STEAL MY BLANKIE, MOM? IT'S NOT THEIRS, IT'S MINE. And then I died of shame and rushed to the Internet in search of replacement.) 

(Second fun fact! Taggies routinely discontinues certain colors and fabrics, including this one! But don't worry, you can totally track down a discontinued duplicate on eBay, provided you're willing to spend close to forty goddamn dollars on a goddamn blanket!)


I cannot say for certain, but I suspect the "blankies live in your room" rule was what initially gave Ezra's Baby a shot at Most Beloved Toy Status. "Baby" is actually a Fisher-Price Baby's First Bear — I believe my mom sent it to us shortly after the ultrasound revealed another boy, so it's always been around, but I never noticed Ezra paying any special attention to it until a year or so ago, when he started calling it My Baby and insisting that My Baby come places with us. 

Captain underpants bear

(Like...to his school's Halloween party. As Captain Underpants.) 

I learned not long after writing that entry that I'd misidentified My Baby's gender. Despite being outfitted in blue perma-jammies, My Baby is a girl. And My Baby's full name is Bloon Ike Storch. Bloon. No, not Baloon or Bloom or BlueMoon or any of the things I originally thought Ezra was saying.

Bloon Ike Storch, Mom. She's a girl baby. Get it together.

When Bloon leaves the house, she is dressed in her underclothes (the romper from my circa 1980s Cabbage Patch Kids Preemie doll) and her dress (the apron from the circa 1970s Raggedy-Ann doll my mom made for me). If it's cold outside, she will also require a pair of Ike's socks.

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Although I've been sorely tempted to go searching online for similar vintage doll clothing or patterns, I have resisted thus far. I sense madness lies that way.

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Plus, knowing Ezra, it would simply add another 20 minutes on our getting-out-the-door time in order to select the perfect outfit. 

Bloon is precious. Bloon is important. Bloon is a real baby with real needs and real feelings and is honestly pretty goddamn high maintenance for a frigging stuffed bear.

I've bandaged Bloon after a tumble from the tree in our front yard, given her medicine for a case of the throw-ups, and bought a custom-sized lingerie bag to bathe her in, which I usually shove inside a pillowcase just to be extra cautious, because God help us if she falls apart in the wash, because there is simply no replacing Bloon with an imposter — she's so loveworn and faded and missing the patch on her pajamas. Ezra would know in a second, and it just wouldn't be the same. 

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I've sewn Bloon's arms back together and reinforced her seams. I've recurled her two ribbon hairs and obediently staged her in various places during the day so she'll be doing whatever activity Ezra decreed she needed to do that day before leaving for school. She has her own high chair and baby bottle, her own special covers for her nap, and she will often sit at our front window so she can watch for Ezra at the end of the day. 

I also bought Bloon a friend. A hastily-grabbed souvenir from the San Deigo airport: a Bloonish-sized Uglydoll dressed as Superman

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The Uglydoll was originally known as SuperBaby, but then one week he had a series of birthdays and became SuperKid. Then I pointed out that according to his tag, his name was Babo.

Ezra could never remember the name Babo, and ultimately decided to reject the tag in favor of Bubby. 

(When I told him that "Bubbe" was also a name for a grandmother, he was like, "No, he's like a BUDDY, who is also a BABY. He's a BUBBY.")

(Way to understand how WORDS WORK, MOM.)

And so, much like Ezra's two blankies, he now has two babies. "My Babies!" he says, approximately seven hundred million times a day. "Where are My Babies?" He takes them everywhere except school — to restaurants, to the mall, to birthday parties. The two extra seats in the minivan now belong to Bloon and Bubby, and he carefully buckles each one of them in before buckling himself up. He tells me about their dreams and moods and how they cry if they get left alone. On the rare occasion that I convince him to leave them behind for their own safety/cleanliness, he'll pretend to call them on my phone. "I'll be home soon guys, love you!"

One day he came home from school and couldn't find them. I discovered him wandering around the house, desperately looking for them, a few silent tears streaking his sweet face — Bloon must be so scared, he worried. We found them in Ike's room, in the rocking chair. I think Ezra put them there so Ike could keep them company.


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My children are, in many ways, a mystery to me. They're so different from me and from each other, and I've learned not to make any pronouncements or assumptions about their personalities or future lives, because they surprise me constantly. It's a strange experience getting to know the very people you gave birth to — you'd think you'd have some built-in sense of who they are and who they're going to be. Maybe some mothers do, but my boys are still very much wildcards to me. Baffling yet delightful little wildcards.

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But when I watch Ezra with his Babies, I see exactly who he is, and the man he will become. 

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And it makes me so happy. 



My soon to be five-year old has a small blue teddy bear, aptly named teddy bear, who lives a life similar to Bloon and Bubby. He rides in the car to school and gets left in the car seat. Sometimes he sits up front with me for my drive to work... At times Teddy Bear is accompanied by "Baby Nash" a Corolle baby that he received as an infant. Interestingly enough my daughter abandoned her baby when we made her give up the paci...Kids are hard to figure out!


First, you had me at 'he makes his bed every morning', then you clinched it with Ezra's sensitivity and the fact that he tells his babies he loves them. I love this child. And I'm so glad he's encouraged in his efforts to be nurturing. As my beloved and wise granmother used to say, 'he'll make someone a good husband some day.' Lucky person :)


You....need to stop writing things that make my pregnant lady self cry. :-)


Gosh I love Ezra. He's 9 months older than my older daughter - can we get them together some day?

(Plus, Amy, you have an amazing way with words).


He's gonna make an awesome husband some day with his cooking & parenting skills. =)

Suzy Q

Oh, that kid. What a sweetie! I hope he grows up to be a teacher; the world needs more empathetic male teachers.


That picture of him looking in the window at Bloon and Bubby? I die. Seriously, too cute.


Love to the Mighty Za! Too freaking cute!


He's a super kid and he's going to be a super adult. You should be so proud.


I didn't cry at all.

Also? I thought you were leading us into having him give up his blankies à la the adorable little blond boy in "Mr. Mom." I probably wouldn't have cried then either.



Usually you make me smile and laugh, Amy Storch. But I'm just awake from a nap in which I dreamed I went walking with my grandfather, and then I read this post about Ezra, my favorite of your kids, and now I have tears streaming. What a marvelous child he is.


He's so sweet! Wonderful post. :) <3


Ezra could be the sweetest five-year-old ever. And I have a fairly sweet five-year-old of my own.

We lost my oldest daughters Kitty Kitty shortly before we moved. It's been devastating even almost a year later. She knows that the one that I bought on Ebay (because, you know, the bookstore stopped selling it) isn't the same one because it's not nearly as loved. She does okay, but then somedays she'll ask me if Kitty is lonely... if she misses her... if she's found a new home.

Thankfully, we have two blankets (pink blanket and blue blanket) and a menagerie of other stuffed animals.


How I loved this and how I love his tender little heart.

Do you remember the album "Free to Be, You and Me?" If so, do you remember the story/song "William's Doll?" That song made such an impression on me and I always vowed that if my boys were into dolls or whatever, that we would nurture that because one day they'll be Daddies.

This song makes me glad your boys are growing up in that type of family. Not all little boys are!


Ezra is amazing...and your writing is stunning.


Damn, you made me cry. Thank you.


What a sweet little kid. And kuddos to you for being so patient with his loveys. Granted, my kids have yet to become attached to anything with such passion, but I do not see myself buying back up stuff. Things get lost or destroyed and we have to let them go. Bummer, kid, but life goes on.



God, woman.


My heart.


The best compliment my mother has given me on my parenting came as we were watching my daughter with her baby. I said something about her taking good care of her baby, and Mom replied "yes, she's mimicking you."


oh, i love me some Zah.


That's so Ezra.

... He makes my heart go all squishy.

Lynda M Otvos

He's the most compassionate little guy I have ever heard about. You sure are doing this mama-thing well, Ame-ster !~!


You know, they make baby carriers.. well.. doll carriers so that kids can wear their 'babies'.

I think ergo makes one and lots of etsy stores do.

Which might give an extra layer of protection and cleanliness when taking them out.


he is going to be such a great dad. and that picture with him looking at Bloon and Bubby heart melt!!! Why have you not written a book yet!


You make me proud to be a mom of a little boy. Such sweet words.


And the cutest kid ever award goes to...


This is the story that all expecting moms should read when they feel a pang of disaapointment upon finding out they will be having a boy. The rude, mean, wild boys are the ones that stand out in our fears but THIS is how sweet little boys can be. What joy!


Right there at the end, oh man. Someone started slicing onions near my office. I'm sure of it.


I just love that little guy.


I too have made the "buy two of something so it's always available" mistake. My middle child, also an Ezra, has his blankie and his "animals" which Are really two small stuffed Eeyore's. How he came to know that there are two I do not know, but woe betide you if he does not have both for every nap and bedtime and just the one specific brown and green blanket.

It is nice to hear about the sweeter sides of boys every now and then though. Rough and tumble as they may be, they are also the best cuddlers. Just yesterday my Ezra came up behind me and hugged me in a manner similar to a choke hold, and said "I love you Mommy!" Just out of nowhere. They get you when you least expect it. :)


Aaaaand I'm crying.


My 13 month old son's nickname is Bubby...following the same logic Ezra described. Wise beyond his years, that one.


That boy is just something else.

Such a sweetheart!


Zah is too adorable and sweet. And I'm glad to see the experience of sewing up Puppy for Max was just training you for even more important duties


Love that Ezra!


This was a stunning piece.

Plano Mom

Matt (now 15) had a green blankie and his older sister's doll, his baby named Jessica. When Matt was about 7, one of the neighbor boys teased him about his doll, so she started hiding in my room for a while. He eventually dropped the doll (I really hated that neighbor kid) but he still has the green blankie. It stays in his very messy bed.


Um, so, totally wasn't expecting the wetness that erupted from my face after reading this post, but, well played. Maybe it's because I, too, have three boys (expecting my membership card to arrive any day now...), or your writing style or whatever, but I'm convinced we totally would be friends in real life. I hope that wasn't creepy.


I just replaced Ezra's name with my own Joseph's name and it works. My guy also has a lot of love to share with his crew.

I see your taggie blanket and raise you four Beanie Baby kittens (rescued from the yard sale pile) and two foxes -- one regular, one a tiger that is actually an American Striped Fox complete with origin story. Wait, even though I'm so lame at blogging, I did at least write about Striper and how Joseph dressed up as his favorite friend for Halloween. http://www.prettylittlenest.com/2013/11/halloween-2013.html


Love this.


What a sweet little guy! And now I'm crying at work. :)


Ditto on crying at work! What a sweet little dude.

not supergirl

I'm glad there are boys like yours. I have daughters, and they seem to be interested in boys, so I'm always comforted to hear from parents who are raising their sons so beautifully. Thank you!


This is so sweet!


All that tenderness, devotion and taking care of his babies? He learned that all from you, Amy.

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