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When a giant spring snowstorm derailed our day’s plans, I decided C and I needed a fun, easy to pull together activity.
Since we had just been to an Easter egg hung, we had plenty of eggs, and I remembered the Easter egg lunch I’ve seen everywhere on Pinterest.
I put my own spin on it, serving it in a muffin tin (I didn’t have an egg carton) with the eggs closed. Closing the eggs meant he had to guess what was in each one and since I told him the rule of his Easter Bunny lunch was that he had to eat what was in whatever egg he opened before he got a new one, it meant he ate everything in each egg.
Our eggs were filled with cheese, carrots, crackers, strawberries, letter cookies, ham, tortilla and one egg had a piece of candy. He ate everything in the dozen eggs I prepared for him, and then fixed six more at his request.
I plan to do this again on a regular basis, not just at Easter time. It was a fun way to connect at lunch time (he needed help opening each egg and I prompted him to guess what was in each one), and I felt like he ate much better than he normally does for me. I think, if I planned this better, he would eat with a much better variety than he normally does.
Two years old is hysterical. And hysterically challenging.
C now says things like “oh-cake!” for okay and “noke-a-nuts” for no. And at dinner, “I want to see the food in my tummy. Aaaaaaah! Daddy, you see the food in my tummy? Can you see it Daddy?”
And yet there are days when I carry him out of the house, and he hangs on for dear life to the door handle, screaming. And then I cart him to the car, screaming, and wrestle him into his carseat, screaming and kicking, and deposit him at school. Where he has a fantastic day, go figure.
Speaking of school, we’ve been through some challenging days there with him pushing. Apparently my barely 26 pounds soaking wet toddler was “knocking down the little kids.” His teachers are wonderful though, and were very kind about everything, and even said they didn’t think he was doing it to be mean, just to play. The three of us decided to use positive reinforcement was the way to go, and he receives a Skittle from his teacher at the end of the day if he has a good day of no pushing. He’s gotten one two days in a row now and knows he gets one if “I no push my friends Mommy!” I remind him every morning to use gentle hands, be kind to his friends, and use his words and tell him how proud I am of him when he does well.
Colton will sometimes sing unprompted, though he mostly likes to tell me what I ought to sing. Old MacDonald is one of his favorites, but he likes to sing “Old MacDonald had a farm, eieieo! And on that farm he had a…bulldozer. With a push here and push everywhere! Eieio!”
One of the biggest issues we have at two and a half is control. C loves to control anything and everything he can. What we wears, when he gets dressed, what he eats, how he gets in his car seat, how we play when we play with him, etc. Pushing boundaries is is favorite! He’s very strong willed and independent, but what he lacks in cooperativeness, he makes up for in personality.
Some of C’s favorite things at the moment include: trains, trucks, cars, buses, any and all construction equipment, graham crackers (or graham crack, as he calls them), watering things, and letters. This summer he only knew a few letters and didn’t really care about them, now he knows almost all of the capital letters (W, X and Y are hit or miss) and wants to know “what those letters doing?” This means he wants to know what they say; I can’t believe he’s gone from zero interest to understanding that letters make words, which tell us something in only a couple of months. I feel I should add that I don’t particularly care one way or the other if he’s an early reader or that he knows his letters, I’m just amazed and how quickly he has picked them up!
Other random things: C sleeps in a toddler bed for naps and at night and does a reasonably good job staying in his bed; is allergic to peanuts, eggs and cats; loves Mighty Machines, a 90′s Canadian TV show on Netflix, and is so excited about Christmas – decorating the tree has been his favorite thing so far!
I recently had a revelation. Colton is fun. And not just fun in a hey he smiles at me and maybe does something funny once in a while, but fun in that he has a real personality, likes, dislikes and a sense of humor. I don’t just love him because he’s my child, but I like his personality and little quirks that are all his own.
Also, I totally had a phone conversation with him yesterday, and that pretty much rocked my world. I mean, the conversation may have gone, “Colton, Mommy is coming home.” “Yay! Mommy home!” “Do you want to talk to Nona and Popa on the computer with Mommy when she gets home?” “Uh-huh.” “Okay, Mommy is almost home, go wait for Mommy at the door.” “Uh-huh.”
Part of what is making him so much fun all of a sudden are his communication skills. He’s always been a talker, but now his understanding and social skills have caught up with his plain old ability to talk, and we can have real conversations. We talk about his friends, what he learned about at church (goldfish, not God), what his favorite songs are and what kind of birthday party he wants to have (his request, cake).
Colton has figured out he can say things that are funny, and there are times he really tries to be funny or make a joke. He even has a special face he makes when he thinks he’s being particularly funny; he grins, scrunches his noes so his eyes crinkle at the sides, and holds his bent hands by his face. It almost looks like a mouse impression. This face came out this week during dinner (hamburgers for the adults, a hotdog for the toddler) when we had a bottle of ketchup on the table. There’s a picture of a tomato on the bottle, and Colton pointed to it and said, “apple!” We told him it was a tomato, and he told us again that it was an apple. Finally, I guess he thought we were joking with him, because he made his funny face and proclaimed, “that not apple!” and laughed.
Colton loves to get dirty when he’s playing, but then moment he stops playing long enough to realize he’s dirty, he wants to be cleaned up. He loves playing outside, and one of his particularly favorite activities is to sit in our ivy. Today we went to the park, and he picked a flower and clutched until after we’d been home for a while, telling me, “Colton pick beautiful flower.”
I’m not sure I can put into words what I love about this kid. I love the way he sucks his lower lip in, bits it with his top teeth and grins when he’s really happy. I love the way he runs, his knees pulling way up to his chest, arms flailing while he yells.
My husband thinks our son should become a professional photographer. He’s got the stance down (seriously, you should see this – he looks like a mini art student with his legs spread, knees bent, trying to get the perfect shot), he tells his subjects to say cheese, and he has camera operation down-pat.
Maybe, just maybe he needs to work on his framing.
When Colton ran off during dinner a few nights ago, I didn’t think anything of it. He’s not in a booster seat anymore and frequently hops down to play when he’s decided he’s had enough of dinner. I don’t really mind, as it gives Hubs and I some time to finish eating without a screaming toddler who just wants to play. But this time, it was quieter than usual. So, I went to see what he was up to.
I had left my camera somewhere reachable, and he was walking around his room, pointing his camera at his car, the window, the vent, and the ceiling, enthusiastically telling them “cheese!” and snapping their picture.
There were well over 60 of these photos.
A budding photographer cannot be stopped.
It’s official. Colton is a year and a half old. He suddenly seems so grown up. This morning, he just seemed older, looked older, and started doing things he’s never done before.
This month (this week, actually) brought Colton’s first one-year molar. I was beginning to think he’d never get them when I saw two white spots inside his mouth Monday. I wondered, after hearing how terrible cutting molars can be, how we had escaped the initial break-through without incident. That night, he woke up at 11 pm and screamed until 1 am. He finally went back to sleep at 1:45 am. He’s been doing much better since then, thanks to a nightly dose of Tylenol. Along with this, I’ve noticed some serious separation anxiety/clinginess going on. I’m not sure if this is teething related or something that’s typical of 18 month-olds, but he’s recently refused to stay in the church nursery. Instead, he’s just screamed loud and non-stop until I come to get him. He’s okay with Dad in the mornings, but when Dad comes home, he wants me and we have to really work to get him to be okay being alone with Dad.
Other than that, the past month has been a lot of fun! Colton is talking up a storm, adding short two to three word “sentences” into the mix. His only official sentence so far has been “Mommy cracker please?” He also says things like, “grape-grape, Nona, Buffy,” which I can only assume means to convey “Nona gave me a grape, and I gave it to Buffy.” He also sings now! Only really “fa la la la” from “Deck the Halls,” but it is super cute.
He’s obsessed with Curious George, and seems to be developing quite the love for Caillou. Trains and Elmo are still big, but not nearly as exciting as Curious George. He’s also very interested in hair bows and will point them out to me when he sees them on babies in books. He does tell me that boys don’t wear hair bows. He also tells me he’s not a big boy but he’s not a baby either.
I’ll agree with that.
The big news from this past month is that Colton is walking! At my friend’s wedding at the end of the month, he walked in a giant circle and then in a line a good ways into the reception room. And that was the first time he walked. And then he didn’t walk for another week. Now, he pretty much walks all the time. He still can’t get up without pulling up, but I’m sure he’ll get there soon.
Colton loves drinking out of my water bottle, so much so that I’m starting to only carry mine when we’re going to be out together. The upside is that his insane desire for my water only caused him to learn to sign water and please. Sadly, he has forgone most of his other signs in favor of these two. He can bark like a dog, say car and hi, and roar like a dinosaur.
Right now, Colton’s dream seems to be to be big. We play fairly often with his friend Jenna, who is close in age to him, but Colton much prefers following her big brother Trevor around. If a big boy is doing something, Colton wants to be part of it. I’ve tried teaching him to play “I’m gonna get you,” but he runs towards me rather than away from me, so he’s got a bit to learn before he’s ready to play with the big guys.
He wears a size 4 shoe, clothing sized 12 months or 12 to 18 months and wears a size 3 diaper. He eats three meals a day, plus at least two snacks, and eats most everything we eat. Favorite foods include raisins, cheese, graham crackers and Pirates Booty. He still gets one bottle a day, before bed. Speaking of which, he goes to bed around 7 and usually wakes up around 6:30. One nap a day seems to be the way to go, but figuring out what time is best for him to go down. All in all, sleeping is much better than it was last month.
Walking has made such a huge difference in how old Colton seems – he’s now an official “big boy!”
So, Colton turned a year old, then he turned into a big boy.
The day after we took him to the pediatrician, we took away his two afternoon bottles and replaced them with snacks. The first day we did this, he was not happy. Snack time was crying time. But, the day after that, he was down with snacks. Just before he turned 13 months, I took away his morning bottle, replacing it with a breakfast of yogurt right when he got up. Again, the first time we did this was terrible. I wanted so badly to give in and fix him a bottle because he kept crying and telling me he wanted milk, but I stuck with it and the next day breakfast was no big deal. And, while it took him a while to get the hang of it, he became a fan of his straw cup and was happily drinking water and whole milk from both.
He loves his stuffed animals, and will lay on the floor with his face buried into them. He also has a thing for biting them on the nose, which I don’t understand. At first I felt like it might be teething thing, but he still only has two teeth, with none seemingly on the horizon, so who knows.
Sleep was still trying over this month, but we started letting Colton cry in his bed until 6:30 each morning, and we started seeing some good improvement in his wake-up time (rather than having him get up at 4 am each morning!). We did go in every so often to give his paci (which he would throw out of the bed), turn his music back on, etc. after telling him it wasn’t time to get up yet.
Colton did some standing by himself this month and would walk holding onto only one of mine or Hubby’s fingers, but crawled as his primary means of transportation. In fact, he was not remotely interested in trying to stand unassisted when it was anyone else’s idea, sticking his bottom waaaay out and slowly sitting down.
Colton turns one on Thursday, but it seems like he’s already one since we threw him a party with all of this friends in attendance this past weekend.
I wanted to do some sort of over-all theme, but I also wanted to do something that was simple, easy and didn’t break the bank. And then I fell in love with some simple monogrammed cupcake toppers, and the theme was set – “C.”
Along with the cupcakes I had my chalk board plate with a candle in the shape of a one, goodie bags, and all of Colton’s monthly photos. Since he wasn’t officially one yet, I just subbed in one of the fabulous photos Caroline took.
I used the cardboard from the cupcake stand package to make a chalkboard sign for the door since it already had a nice hole in it for hanging. I can’t wait to use this again for something else!
I made Colton’s birthday banner totally with felt. The letters are ironed on with Heat n’ Bond, and the individual squares were made into pockets and then sewn about a half an inch in all around. The cutting was a bit time consuming, but it really was quite simple to make; I plan on using it for lots of birthdays to come.
The most inexpensive and impactful were the paper C’s hanging over the dining room table. Five sheets of paper, thread, tape, scissors and a couple of nap times spent cutting and hanging were all it took. I also used a “c” stamp on the bottom 6 inches of the paper table cloth to further drive home the theme. Plus, all the food started with the letter c – cherry tomato, celery, cucumber, carrot, croissants, chicken salad, cheese, crackers, cantaloup, and cheerios!
Colton was a begrudging cake eater. It took us a long time to convince him to try it, and finally had success when we let him hold a fork and fed him with one as well. He ate about a third of his cupcake, but seemed less than enthused about it.
Special thanks to Sarah for giving me this shirt from her “free clothes to a good home” pile. I love it!
Colton’s photo (along with two of his friends) is the Photo of the Day at Spearmint Baby! Go check it out! Please? You’ve seen the photo before, but let’s all go stare at it and marvel at how big he’s gotten. And his hair growth; looking at this picture I can’t believe how much hair he’s gotten in just 3 months!
Probably (okay, hands down) the worst day in my parenting career thus far.
My kid fell off the bed. My bed. You know, the one that’s up kind of high? Yeah. That one. And he fell on his face.
Because I was in another room.
And he was on the bed.
The middle of the bed, but evidently he did something he has never done before. Rolled. I left him sitting up, and he apparently got himself onto his back and then proceeded to roll onto his stomach and then back onto his back and then off of the bed and onto his face.
Usually if he’s on his stomach, he just screams until I come and move him. Apparently not today. Today it was time for adventure, and adventure he got.
I did look up symptoms of a concussion, and he has none of them, so yay! (In case you were wondering, symptoms of concussion in babies, and adults I assume, include vomiting, pale color and falling asleep easily.) He does have kind of a red nose and the red spot he always has on his face is slightly redder. It will probably bruise, but oh well.
For Christmas he looks like Rudolph!
My mom said I fell off of a bed when I was about 6 months, and that most babies do (Dr. Spock says if your kid doesn’t fall off of something, you’re being too uptight), so I feel a lot better knowing I’m not alone. And that I fell and turned out pretty much normal. So has your kid fallen of something on your watch? Did you fall off of something as a kid?