Doesn't he look so cute with his tushie cheek peeking out!?
He was in a "sposie" cause he had a bit of a diaper rash that day :-(
So trust me when I say, he's such a monkey! I mean it. He climbs the kitchen chairs and table, and even over onto the bay window sill! He empties and climbs into the bottom kitchen drawer. When he became able to climb the couches and chairs we had to rearrange the living room, believe it or not! While in the kitchen he also enjoys emptying all the cloth napkin and handtowel baskets that he can before I sweep him off the floor and strap him down in his highchair! Don't think his menacing ways stop there though! He still does the throwing the food off his tray, or smashing it through his hair! Some forms of kitchen amusement never cease to deliver, namely kitchen utensils!! He LOVES opening that drawer and pulling out every single one, spreading them all over the kitchen floor, just to find one that appeals to him and drag it all over the house! (Yay, MORE dish washing for mommy!) tThen, recently, while my dad was visiting, he helped me add lattice to the deck railing so Munhckin can now go out on the balcony with us. Good intentions, but he thinks we did it so he could drop toys over the railing -- a habit which came from throwing toys over the ledge and gate in the living room so he could hear them crash down the stairs! I told you, he's a little rascal! We actually nicknamed him "Mowgli" like from the Jungle Book! Mostly, because he acts like a little animal (but also because he's so good at making many of the sounds!)
To be fair, I'll admit that most of his activities are less mischievous. He loves building block towers; he's able to stack 8 high on carpet! He loves his train STILL! He hides little toys in the seat and pushes it around. When I vacuum Munchkin gets his little Ikea roller toy and pushes it forward and backward just like mommy! He loves to be chased lately, and hides daily behind a spider back chair, just so I'll yell "Where's my baby?" In the past week, he has had a complete fascination with everyone's toothbrush but his own! And get this: when Barney, Dora, WonderPets, or Jack sing music, he rolls his fists and elbows to "dance" even though he looks more like he's punching a speed bag! Let it be said though, that this is a progression in his dancing. About a month ago, his idea of dancing was to press a button on one of his farm toys that plays "Farmer in the Dell" and Old McDonald, and spin in a circle till he fell down dizzy :-) Yes, I got that one on video!
One of the most precious things he does (and has been doing since he figured out what shoes are) is when we say "Let's go outside," he stops what he's doing immediately, goes to his room, retrieves two shoes (they used to not match, but now match) and brings them to the front door. He sits down, attempting to put them on himself, but waits for you to come help him put them! Once outdoors, nothing is as fun for him as having a stick in each hand toddling around the yard looking for something on which to tap them! It's quite amusing. He doesn't relinquish the sticks for anything, even to try to pick up a rock. You have to pry them out of his fingers while he throws a tantrum at the front door! But no trip outdoors is complete without a ride on his swing! He loves to just sit back and feel the cool breeze in his hair.
A few weekends ago, hubby got the desire to take Munchkin for his first trip to the toy store -- just he and baby (first sign of trouble!) He wanted to find Munchkin chunky legos, but came home with a TRICYCLE! Munchkin can't reach the pedals, but that hasn't stopped him from pushing it around and sitting in the seat for us to push him! Then, this morning we gave him a metal, mini red wagon to troll toys around the house, which he seems to really like. However, I don't think any toy could replace his love for books. All on his own, he will go pull a book out of his book tote and plop down on the floor to "read" it, or he brings it to us and climbs into our lap -- which is MY favorite part.
One of his sweetest abilities is to sign for "MORE" when he wants more of ANYthing, food, sweet juices, piggy back rides, chasing, tickles, rides on the swing. You name it, and it melts me every time he does it! Teaching it to him was really easy. It took about 5 minutes and 1/4 cup of sweet orange juice! He was so excited and proud of himself when he realized that all of a sudden he could communicate in a way I understood. As far as speaking goes, only this past week has he really started saying anything. He's said mama and dada since he was probably 6 or 8 months old and has made MANY animals sounds. Now, however, he's able to sound out some consonants finally that correspond to some words: "sh" for shoe, "bob-bob" for Pop Pop, "g-g" for Ga-Ga (our word for grandma), "st" for stick, and "ch" for truck. I'm told he's way behind "schedule" (if there is such a thing) for boys his age, but he's understands most of what I say to him, he just doesn't have much of a desire to sound it out back to me yet. So no big deal, we can wait it out till he does!
ALL these incredibly cute things he does actually make his toddler tantrums bearable. He only really has them when we take a toy from him or when he's teething. For the first, redirecting his attention to distract him when he gets fussy works well so far, since he doesn't understand yet that he's doing something negative. For the second, iced wet cloths, and teething tablets work wonders! I'm very grateful to say that, as a rule, we're lucky his teething doesn't interrupt his sleep!
What's strange to me is that my greatest source of frustration is not his tantrums, but his eating habits! Sounds stupid, I know, but he (like many toddlers, apparently) is so inconsistent with what he'll eat, and how much he'll eat. So many moms keep trying to reassure me that it's normal, but that doesn't make it any less worrisome that he's getting the nutrients he needs! He's not a picky eater, but he doesn't seem to like lentils for lunch ever, but LOVES them for dinner. And he does like steamed green beans and such, but sometimes will have NO part of them. What can I do about it? Not much for now, really. So I just try to stay calm when he throws things at me, and not react. I'll confess, it's challenging and I've lost my perspective that he just doesn't know better yet, and have had to just walk out of the room once or twice. All in all though, he is the sweetest, happiest little kid I know. He's almost always smiling or laughing, and 'flirting' with the ladies who stop to tell me how amazing his eyes are, or how cute his curls were, or how happy he seems!
Of all of his many daily activities, his nighttime routine is just about the most enjoyable for ME, and maybe him too! I get him changed, prepare him his milk, he drinks it himself, and then I brush his teeth. When back in his room and given the choice of which books to read, Goodnight Gorilla, Good Morning/Goodnight, and The Going to Bed Book are his absolute favorites! Then it's snuggle time after the lights go out! He flips over and climbs up me like a tree trunk and lays his head down to relax. And with a kiss, I lay him on his pillow and say "Nigh, Nigh Baby" knowing full well that he is not a baby anymore.
Thanks for reading (what has ended up being a short book!!)