Haven’t had one of these in awhile so I figure I might as well knock out one of the NoBloPoMoHoMo things…
Curly is really bored of our house after his day at home. Strawberry took out every toy we own in rotation all day, he spent an hour at the playground with my mom, and had a friend stop by for 30 min. By 5 pm when I got home she was ready for a break. I did the after dinner and bedtime routine while she went out for a much needed shopping/St@rbucks outing.
She went to the dollar store for assorted small toys and flotsam. The thinking is we’ll put together some grab bags for the cruise to keep him occupied during dinner. Many people had suggested that we invest in a portable DVD player and kid vids, but I’m not sure how well that will work. He’s not really into sitting still and watching TV. Although he did sit on the couch with me for 15 minutes tonight enjoying a snacktrap of cheerios while watching Meerkat Manor. 🙂 Sh, don’t tell Strawberry!
This NaBloPoMo thing is kicking my ass. I have no time to read and comment, I’m so busy at work it’s insane. I’m only working 6 days in the month of December and am running a huge event in January. So all the things that I would normally have to do 30 days before an event have to get done 60 days before this event, in addition to all my ongoing day to day stuff. And did I mention that my team is down 1 person already and another just announced that she’s leaving? And she won’t be replaced? GAH!!
Bullets it is, people:
- Curly had sort of almost recovered from his latest cold when his standard “I-went-to-the-pediatrician” cold reared it’s ugly head. When he sneezed tonight while being put into his pj’s I caught the double streams of snot in my hand because there weren’t any tissues or rags nearby. Motherhood is SO glamorous.
- Daycare is closed tomorrow for Veteran’s day. Work is not. Strawberry is working from home while I go to the office and my mother is coming over to play with Curly until naptime. We are so lucky to have our parents nearby.
- We took the plunge and registered for an online babysitter search. We’re in touch with a few women that sound promising. If we can get a roster of 2 or 3 reliable sitters we’ll be thrilled. We might even share their names and numbers with our local parent friends. I’m looking forward to finding cheap ways to have fun out of the house 🙂
- Curly is waking earlier than he was before the time change, but it’s doable. 6:40 ish, which is fine on weekdays but I am not going to be happy about it come Saturday.
- When we picked Curly up at daycare this afternoon his teacher began apologizing profusely. She’d been writing with a washable green marker and Curly kept trying to grab it, so in jest, she drew a handlebar mustache on his face. Let’s just say it’s not quite as washable as she’d thought, but it’s practically gone after his bath. Sorry, no pictures.
Suppertime used to be easier than this. Curly used to try everything and eat most if not all that was on his tray (and sometimes ask for more). He was happy to eat what we were eating. But, things have changed (as toddlers do). Now suppertime is a bit of a challenge and it seems we are constantly having to change things in order to… appease him. Ever since his pediatrician appt when we learned that he hadn’t gained weight in two months (oh noez!), we decided that we couldn’t keep offering him only what we were eating if he didn’t want it.
For instance, Nutella would make a delicious beef stew with carrots and potatoes, served with a side of multigrain bread to sop up the leftover liquid. In the past, this would be a huge hit- Curly would eat the chunks of beef and potatoes, the carrots could be a hit or miss, and he always loves his carbs. More recently he didn’t want any of it, except for the bread. Bread and a yogurt smoothie…eh, not such a good dinner. So we started giving him a stick of cheese with every dinner (has not yet been rejected) and something else so that if he didn’t want what we were eating, at least he would eat SOMEthing.
Two nights ago Nutella (our wonderful chef) put together a Thanksgiving-esque meal of turkey breast, pear stuffing and cranberry (ok, so the cranberry was from a can, but I love that stuff). We thought Curly would LURVE it. He didn’t even want to TRY it and acted extremely put upon that we would even suggest he do so. So Nutella and I ate our meal while Curly had a tantrum. And let me tell you how nice it is to come home from a long day at work only to have your child scream at you during dinner. Finally, Nutella practically begged him to try just one piece of turkey, and after he did he ate a few more pieces and then signed “Done.” Sigh.
And last night (leftovers)….he ate all his turkey, asked for more, and then DEMANDED CRANBERRY. And even before he was finished eating it, would sign MORE cranberry, MORE MORE MORE! After two more helpings, it was starting to look like he would eat the entire can of cranberry and we had to put a stop to it. We apologized to him, moved it out of sight, and continued eating. Commence tantrum.
I know this is most likely a phase…part of the Terrible Twos…but boy is it tedious.
We know it can be difficult to keep up with the NaBloPoMo posts, so we’ll just do a quickie picture post this time….only these pictures will be outtakes and funnier shots instead of typical ones…
Damn, missed posting yesterday, but we’ll try to get you 2 today to make up for it.
Curly is a kid that loves to sleep, as we’ve mentioned many a time. He typically goes to bed around 7 pm and sleeps through until 6:30 or 7 the next morning. With the approach of the end of Daylight Savings Time in the US, we wanted to try and avoid this becoming the need to get to bed at 6pm and waking up at 6am. So about 2 weeks ago we started pushing Curly’s bedtime later and later. Most of this week he was going down between 7:30 and 8 and waking between 7 and 7:30am. We adjusted our commute/ daycare drop off to 15-30 minutes later.
Unfortunately, he’s a “poop first thing” guy. 6 out of 7 mornings there’s a poop in his overnight diaper. So when he starts making noise, we HAVE to get him. Nothing we do seems to change the morning poop. We’ve tried shifting the types of food he gets at certain times of day. Giving him his iron drops as late as possible in the day to try and constipate him (he still poops at least a couple times during the day). But nothing has changed. We’re resigned to it now.
Last night was the big test. We put Curly to bed at 7:30 and this morning he started making noise when the unadjusted clock read 7:30. Which is now 6:30 am. And sure enough, he had a huge poop. It’s going to be very challenging adjusting his nap and bedtime tonight. The plan is to put him down at 7 and see if he can sleep til 7am tomorrow. We wish you all luck with the change, too!
Curly had his 18 month check-up today and was a very good boy…kept quietly busy during the wait times and only cried for about 30 seconds after his flu shot, which was the only shot he needed today (he goes back in Dec for his second flu shot since he’s never had one before). The doctor thinks he is doing fine developmentally, even though we were concerned about a few things (he doesn’t point, he only recently learned to wave, and he doesn’t have many words). It’s so hard not to compare your child to other children of the same age and so we do, and some of those other children seem much more advanced and we get worried. However, the doctor was not concerned since he is great with receptive language and can do almost everything else that a typical 18 month old child can do. So we’ll all just wait and see.
He is 23 lbs 8 oz (20-25th%) and 32 inches (40-45th%). His growth has very obviously slowed down…funny to think that he used to be in the 75th and higher percentiles when he was a baby. The doctor was only mildly concerned about his lack of weight gain (he was 23 lbs at 16 months) because he has a hearty appetite and eats a variety. Our plan is to totally stuff him on the cruise in time for his next appt. 😉
I filled out a development questionnaire on this blog when he was 13 months, so I thought I’d do it again now that he’s a year and a half. This might bore others, but I think it’ll be a good reference one day.
- Describe what and how your child eats: He eats almost everything except green veggies (although sometimes they say he eats them at daycare) and only has picky moments now and then. He uses his hands to eat and right now lacks the coordination needed to use a spoon/fork, but can get the food into his mouth if we pre-load the utensil for him (and occasionally asks us to keep doing so). He will sometimes try himself with the spoon but it’s very messy/clumsy.
- Loves: cheese, fruit, bread, pasta, crackers, yogurt smoothies. Meat/poultry is sometimes a win, sometimes a fail.
- Hates: green veggies, spicy food, tomatoes
- Does your child have any sleep problems? No, as long as he has darkness and quiet, he’s good (so he doesn’t nap too well at daycare). Oh, and sometimes he sleep talks. Loudly.
- Describe your child’s typical sleep / wake pattern (including naps): Usually sleeps from 7pm to 7am with one long nap from 12pm – 3pm. At daycare, he only sleeps around an hour.
Activity and Motor Development
- Describe your child’s gross and fine motor skills (how he moves around, grabs things, etc.). He walks everywhere, and although he can run (clumsily), he chooses not to because he’s cautious. He loves climbing and can handle small slides by himself. He loves stacking things, putting things inside boxes and out again; he can throw a ball. He lacks the patience needed for shape-sorting and puzzles. Sometimes he gets a piece or two in, but as soon as something doesn’t fit, he loses interest or gets mad. He likes putting hats on his head. He likes sitting with books and turning the pages.
Social Skills and Environment
- What can your child do for himself? He’s great at playing independently. He can let us know when he’s hungry or thirsty, wants more or is done by signing. He can open and close doors. Feeds himself. Puts things away.
- Can your child follow simple directions? Yes, he understands No/No Touch, Gentle, Let’s go outside, Let’s eat Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner, Put it on the table, Clean up, Give me a hug/kiss, Gimme Five, Bath time, etc.
- How does your child react to family outings and visitors? Loves new places, very interested in people but can be a little shy with people he doesn’t know. When he’s shy, he clings to one of his moms.
- If your child is in daycare/school, how does your child handle it? He loves going to daycare and has a lot of fun. He eats well but sometimes has trouble napping. Likes his teachers and the other children.
- Describe how your child copes with discomfort, frustration, or other distress: If he’s not overtired/hungry/in pain, he usually whines or yells and quickly gives up. If he is any of those previous things, he begins to have a tantrum, which may or may not escalate. The worst tantrums may last up to 10 minutes…usually they’re only a couple minutes long. He’s getting better at calming himself down. And he definitely relies on thumb-sucking.
Language and Communication
- Describe your child’s language abilities: He pretty much only says one word at a time. He hasn’t gained many words since he was 13 months old, but his receptive language is very good. He regularly says some version of banana, apple, go, up, uh oh, cheese, dog, buckle, ball, mama, done. Now and then he’ll try to repeat what we say.
- How else does he communicate his wishes? He regularly uses signs for eat, drink, more, and all done. He will bring things to us or motion for us to take things from him. Or he’ll whine/yell.
Toys and Play
- List your child’s favorite toys and describe how he plays with them: He loves stacking cups and stacking rainbow rings on a pole, playing with boxes, “reading” board books, throwing balls, playing with refrigerator magnets, shaking things that make noise, pushing buttons on remote controls or his toy cell phone.
- Does your child have a lovey? Nope, he prefers sucking his thumb to soothe himself.
- Does your child play with other children? Mostly he plays on his own, but he does interact with other children and he’s started to include his moms in his play (asking us to throw a ball or read him a book)
Feelings and Moods
- Describe your child’s range of feelings (comfort, discomfort, pleasure, joy, anger, affection, fear, hostility, depression / sadness) and how he expresses them: Overall he is happy and has a good sense of humor, but he has a wide range of emotions and he is not quiet about them. He will wail if he is upset, clap and shriek when he’s excited, hug us or lean on us when he’s shy, run away when he’s scared, etc.
- What is likely to upset your child? Taking something away from him, physically blocking him from going somewhere, being taken out of the bath sometimes, not being understood.
- What makes him feel better? Giving him what he wants (ha!), picking him up/hugging him.
- How many teeth? 14. He just got his two lower canines and has all his 1 year molars.
- In what ways, if any, does your child behave aggressively toward you, his siblings, his playmates, or others? He’s not very aggressive. Occasionally he’ll hit, but it’s not typical and we immediately correct it.
- Does your child have a strong preference for one parent? Not really a strong preference, but we’ve noticed that lately he *may* prefer mommy (Strawberry) over Ima (Nutella). Ouch.
So we’ve decided to jump on board the NaBloPoMo train and give it a whirl. We may not post every day, but will try to at least every other day. We are still open to any questions or topics you may have for us to blog about, and will do our best to come up with posts “with substance!”
A couple weeks back, we took a road trip and met up with love+love=marriage and Adding Baby. It was great seeing the love+love girls again, and meeting the Adding Baby family. Though our boys are not quite at the age where they play together, they were definitely interacting with one another and enjoying the activities. I had mentioned that we stayed at a hotel we got on Pric@line and were hoping the bathroom was big enough to keep the pack n play in. It was very large and worked out perfectly:
Of course, this means we had to use the hotel’s facilities after he went to bed around 7pm, but being able to put him in a dark, quiet room with the door closed works out perfectly. Nutella graciously allowed me to go downstairs to the hotel bar and have a drink- such freedom! I brought profiteroles for us to share back up to the room afterwards.
Our next big trip is a cruise in December. We started out with a small (146 sq ft) interior room, but have since upgraded to a larger (190 sq ft) balcony room. Still, it’s going to be very interesting cruising with a toddler. The bathrooms are the size of closets so it is highly doubtful the PnP will fit in there. There is a curtain that separates the bed area from the sitting area, but of course, it’s not like having a separate sound- and light-proof room. Thankfully, Nutella’s parents will be cruising with us and staying in a room adjacent to ours. With a monitor, it should work out that we can hang out in their room if they’re out, or they can keep watch on the monitor if they’re back in their room while he’s napping/sleeping. We also purchased a very strong set of voice-activated walkie-talkies ( just like a super-strong monitor) so that we can hang out at the library or lounge just down the hall on our same floor and still be watchful of him. There’s also tag-teaming and if available, on-board babysitting (it’s supposed to be available, but there have been issues with that as of late). We’ll have to play it by ear to see what works best.
It’ll be very interesting/challenging cruising with a toddler, as it always is when traveling with him, but we’re really looking forward to the trip. How could Curly possibly not like the all-you-can-eat buffets, live music, hallways to run down, and international travel?
Curly is officially 18 months today. Damn it’s going fast! We had a fantastic weekend, the highlight of which was Trick or Treating last night. I made his fuzzy little brown bear costume and thank goodness it was big enough to wear a nice warm outfit underneath, since it got chilly after the sun went down. I scored some hideous velour outfits for Strawberry and myself at a thrift store. She painted stripes on hers and I made us ears and tails (and a mane for me). Lion and tiger and bear, oh my! Sorry no picture here of the 3 of us, you’ll have to use your imagination.
Curly caught on to the concept pretty quickly. At first he kept trying to go into people’s houses when they opened the door! But when it came to taking a brightly colored crinkly item from a bowl or a stranger’s hand and dropping it into a bag, he excelled. And the bonus is that he has NO IDEA that the stuff he was given is edible. So for this year at least, we get the candy. He will get to eat the few “healthy” snacks we received (pretzels, graham and cheddar bunnies) and the kind person that gave out a little squishy ball with a spooky face has surely won a special place in Curly’s heart. I think it may have been the same house that gave out “vampire slaying” instructions to the adults, telling you all about the energy sucking electronics in your home. I love our little hippie town!
Our little bear cub
Shake that bear booty!
Bear in a cage
Mommy tiger and bear cub don’t like the flash!
Trick-or-treating with Ima lion
It was so much fun this year, seeing him get into the magic of it all. A great improvement over last year, when he couldn’t have cared less and just wanted to go home and go to sleep. And we know that it will only get better next year!