Oh my… everyone always told me that it is “the terrible threes” with boys and that battle moniker is beginning to ring true in our household. While I obviously still adore my almost three-year old, his antics are certainly starting to chip away at my patience stores…at a rapid pace.
So because I need to use this blog as a good therapeutic vent today, here are my top three pet peeves of the approaching three’s:
During all waking hours, Ev emits constant loud noise from his vocal chords. I think I could handle it better if it was actual coherent speech or even the dreaded repeated inquisition of “Why? Why? Why?” But for now, it is just pure nonsensical gibberish sound effects–all day long. Imagine the meal time chorus of “Wee-Ooh, Wee-Ooh, Wee-Ooh, Wee-Ooh” peppered by intermittent giggles, increasing in volume between bites of food. Is there a fire engine rolling through my dining room? No–just random sound effects du jour. This is especially frustrating, because Everett can finally talk–pretty well–in full sentences… yet he chooses to just make obnoxious toddler calls into the wild. There was a time not too long ago when I thought that everything that came out of my little two-year old new talker’s mouth was just adorable. I feel guilty cringing at the grating garishness now as I attempt polite redirections such as, “You are hurting my ears. We don’t scream at dinnertime. Please talk to us using your words.” I’ve found myself actually fearing that Everett’s nonsensical babbling will confuse Louie’s speech development!
After an early wake-up and a busy morning of active play, my boy is exhausted come 1:00 p.m. You can see it in his eyes. Since the beginning of his existence, the afternoon siesta has been a mainstay in our world. I still put him in his bed, but the stubborn boy will just not let himself succumb to slumber. The sound effects continue to resound as he rolls around his bed, weaves his sheet in and out of the bed rail slats, does headstands on his mattress, takes off his clothing, puts his clothing back on, sings a song, does a jig, makes animal noises, scratches the paint off his bed frame, makes a fort with his comforter, puts his socks on his hands, talks to his dinosaur pillowcase, flutterkicks his feet, claps his hands, tickles his own belly and giggles away. It’s quite impressive the way he can happily entertain himself for two hours without any toys on an area the size of a yoga mat, and I suppose I should be happy about that fact. However, I know that if he would just allow himself to be STILL for even 5 minutes, he would fall asleep. I would surrender to the notion that he might be outgrowing his need for a nap if only that were true. But he is miserable from the hours of 3:00 p.m. until 6:30 when he must go to bed or risk fatigue-induced insanity (for himself and his mother).
Picking a Fight
I thought you had to be more rational to have the craftiness and cunning to actually initiate a conflict….but perhaps it is the irrationality of 2-3 year olds that actually deserves credit for this move. If the mood strikes, Everett will go out of his way to pick a fight with me. It is usually masked as an inability to make a simple decision. Milk or water? Car or doggy pajamas? Green cup or blue cup? I know I am in trouble when the indecision erupts. “I want cereal.” (Ok, here are some Cheerios.) “No, no cereal. No cereal. Can you take it to kitchen? No cereal!” (I take the cereal away.) “My cereal! I want cereal!” For a while, I wondered if I should have sympathy for these existential crises. Is it difficult for a little person to handle the freedom that comes with having choice? Perhaps. But after a while, I think it also just became a way to pick a fight. There must be crazy mixed-up torrents of toddler emotions that need to be released…and maybe a conflict is the only way to express them? I knew this was the case during a nap battle one day. Everett’s latest stall tactic has been to whine for the door to his room to “stay open” when he gets in his bed. Ok, fine. No problem. Door is open. But that simple appeasement was not what he was hoping for apparently, because within minutes he actually got out of his bed to close his own bedroom door just so that he could climb back in and wail for me to “leave the door open!” Crazy, right? Certifiable. He should just be saying, “But mama–I just want to fight!”
So there’s my top three thorns on my beautiful budding rose. Of course I have a far greater store of sweet, endearing gestures and heroic toddler stunts that make me smile…but I felt like releasing a little frustration today and being well, real. Motherhood is beautiful and gratifying and amazing…and mind-boggling. So, I’m just hanging out in the scrambled brain camp today–drinking too much coffee on a cold snowy day and dreaming of summer sunshine and an open field where a 3-year old boy is running and running off energy.
A little more than two years ago, I wrote a post entitled “Eight is Great” that chronicled my first experience raising an 8-month old. Now that Louie is 8 months (almost 9) old, I figured it was appropriate to write a sequel.
At 8 months old, Louie is still the jolliest babe on the planet. He very rarely fusses and is always quick to return a smile. He loves to sit on his hands and knees in crawling position and rock and is pretty adept at scooting backwards. However, the poor little dude just cannot figure out how to crawl forwards. This results in frustration when he backs himself into corners and gets himself racked on table legs, chairs, etc. Unlike Everett, he does not army crawl but prefers to be up on all fours (something that Ev didn’t figure out until 11 months). However, he is much more stationary than Everett was at this age given that getting from point A to point B requires much more pivoting and zig-zagging as he tries to get ahead by moving backwards.
Louie is so much bigger than Everett was at this age. He is close to 20 lbs already and is wearing clothes sized 12-18 months. Everett wasn’t even 20 lbs when he turned 1! He loves solid foods with recent favorites being yogurt with cinnamon, broccoli and carrots. He is getting a little better everyday with finger foods, which for now is mostly puffs, peas, carrot bits, and shredded cheese.
Louie has 4 teeth–2 on bottom and 2 on top that look like rabbit teeth. He takes two good naps everyday (if our schedule allows) and if it doesn’t, he is super flexible and goes with the flow. He is still not sleeping through the night, but we are starting to work on that this month.
He adores his big brother and his daddy. He loves to squeal, scream (happily) and babble dada-da and gaga-ga.
Here are a couple photos from our 8-month photo shoot. Couldn’t be happier to be these boys’ mama!