Jack jumped down from the table tonight, right in the middle of having his snack before bed. Where could he be going? Oh, just to the bathroom. I saw that his shorts were halfway down before he turned the corner. He doesn't ask for help anymore, or even tell me he's leaving the room.
Sometimes after school Jack will just run upstairs and shut his door. When I head up to check on him, I find elaborate "inventions" constructed out of various objects... such as a chair, phone cord, a plastic slinky, magnets and a giant blow up hammer.
Other times Jack will just head out onto the deck and I'll find him playing with whatever toy happens to be out there. He's perfectly happy and content and not worried that I'm in the house and might not even realize that he's out there!
me: Where ya going Jack?
Jack: Aahhh I'll be right back. (he heads outside)
me: Jack? (I follow just to see what he's doing)
Jack: (singing to himself he heads into the garage and starts pulling items out into the driveway)
me: Whatcha got there?
Jack: You can go back in the house if you want. I'm just building a car wash.
me: Okay. But stay where I can see you.
I watch him play by himself until he sees our neighbor and his friend Dina come out into her yard. He walks over to the fence and they have an elaborate conversation for about 10 minutes. I wonder what they're talking about.
Jack: Mom! Dina said I can come over and go swimming! (he heads in to get his bathing suit)
me: Whoa! Not so fast. It's almost bedtime. No swimming tonight. Sorry.
Jack: But I already told her I would be over.
me: You didn't ask me first. Go tell her you'll have to swim another time.
Jack: (stops and thinks about it) Sigh. Can you do it for me?
Funny how the independence runs out when there's "work" involved.