Entries Tagged as 'terrible twos'

to my son on his second birthday

23.03.16

Gatsby/GB/Geebo/Gilbert/Goose (that last nickname is a new one I’m trying out)–

You’re two years old today. What a big little man you are. I was rereading last year’s letter, which was all about how sweet and gentle you are and I just had to laugh. You’re still super sweet and lovey, of course, but you are now a full-fledged… toddler.

My baby boy is now a toddler @ohbotherblog

You get into everything. You started walking not long after your first birthday and have been on the move ever since. You’re like a ferret–you steal things and hoard them in various places. We once went three days without a TV remote until we found where you had put it.

Big shoes to fill @ohbotherblog

You have yourself quite a temper, though for some reason I still don’t find it as difficult as Holdy’s. When you get mad, you throw whatever is in your hand–your bottle, your Nuk, your toy, your shoe. Sometimes you’ll put your hand up to hit and when I tell you “no hit,” you look me dead in the eyes, walk over to the nearest wall and hit it, as if to say, “I’m wishing this was your face.” 

Toddler tantrums @ohbotherblog

We’ve been trying Time Outs, but when I sit you down to talk about your behavior, you always make a silly face at me by opening your mouth wide to diffuse the mood. “You’re lucky you’re cute,” is a phrase I say often.

Silliness diffuses anger @Ohbotherblog

You love paper products for some reason–paper towels, napkins, toilet paper, baby wipes. You’re fascinated by toothbrushes, so much so that I bought you two as your Valentine’s Day present. You are absolutely obsessed with vehicles–“hucks” (trucks)–and you point out every one you see. Every jeep, van, truck, car, or tractor, which makes for interesting car rides. You get the biggest thrill by sitting on a tractor; maybe we’ll go to Home Depot today for your birthday, haha.

My kid loves vehicles @ohbotherblog

Your vocabulary has grown tremendously. You ask, “what’s that?” all the time and repeat words and phrases so well that sometimes we have to laugh about it. You enjoy learning and seem to take it very seriously. One of your very first words was “Holdy,” and it’s still the first word you say every morning, asking her whereabouts. That’s followed immediately by “ballal” (bottle), which you request multiple times a day. Your newest phrase–much to my dismay–is, “I farted.” I blame your Duke for that one.

Moving into Sissy's room @ohbotherblog

You’re still a great sleeper, even after we moved your crib into your sister’s room a few weeks ago. I was hoping your presence would make sleeping through the night less stressful for her and that it would also bring the two of you closer. We have to contend with some silliness at bedtime, but so far, you’ve both been sleeping pretty well through the night with no issues.

You call me, “Baba,” and you’re my little buddy. Sometimes you surprise me by coming up out of nowhere and hugging my leg.

 

❤️

A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

You’re very close with your Duke, who you spend every day with. You love to go on walks with him in the jogging stroller. I suspect Duke sneaks you sips of soda like he did your sister. Next month, you’ll be going to school with Holdy and I know Duke will miss his pal. I’m hoping that means Duke will be up for some nighttime babysitting to make up for it.

GB loves his Duke @ohbotherblog

You love to dance, preferring the Riverdance-style. We’ll be literally anywhere and you’ll hear a few strains of music and your hands are instantly in the air.

 

Greased Lightning #ohbotherblog

A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

 

GB Dance Party #babyfees #ohbotherblog #disneyside

A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

You’re sweet and silly and loving and curious. You start out tentative around other people but warm to them quickly (unless they’re the doctor). You are soft spoken (when you aren’t yelling and screeching with your sister).

Your best friend remains your Holdy. You guys are two peas in a pod and pretty much inseparable, although you are starting to exert your independence more. You feed off of each other, which means our evenings at home are often crazy.

 

Weirdos.

A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

I’m so glad that you guys have each other and I hope you stay just as close as you grow, even though I predict there will be a lot of conspiring against me in our futures.

 

OH MY GAWD

A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

They say the years are short and the days are long and that’s the absolute truth. One minute I was rocking my tiny little baby to sleep and I blinked and now he’s climbing on top of the coffee table (again. Stop doing that please.).

You’re growing into such a fantastic little boy and bring so much joy to our days. I can’t wait to see how you blossom at school. I know Holdy will take good care of you and introduce you to everyone as “My GB.”

Happy, Happy Birthday, GB.

I’m sorry I still haven’t made you a Shutterfly book.

Sheriff Woody won't wear his hat #babyfees #ohbotherblog #disneyside

A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

snowed in, pt 2

24.01.16

It has not been a good weekend.

We started out okay, taking advantage of the snow by taking 30 minutes to get bundled up to play outside.

Blizzard Jonas 2016 @ohbotherblog Blizzard Jonas 2016 @ohbotherblog

 

Need for speed #ohbotherblog #pawx #yorksnow

A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

Only to come back in after about 10 minutes.

Blizzard Jonas 2016 @ohbotherblog

Holdy and I had a spa day while GB napped.

Blizzard Jonas 2016 @ohbotherblog Blizzard Jonas 2016 @ohbotherblog

But then come afternoon, the restlessness set in and the horror started. The whining. The requests. The crying. The dog crapping on the floor in protest. The fighting. The throwing the little brother down the stairs.

Blizzard Jonas 2016 @ohbotherblog

Day Two has only gotten worse. 

As in diarrhea and vomiting worse.

Blizzard Jonas 2016 @ohbotherblog

Poor GB’s diet is about 85% whole milk. So you can imagine the consistency. And smell.

Amidst multiple loads of laundry and steam cleaning the carpet about four times, I also had to find time to help out with the shoveling so the neighbors didn’t think I was a huge jerk.

Fortunately, “Pukey” went down for a nice long nap so I could shovel while Holdy literally played in the street. Unfortunately, my right shoulder is slightly dislocated so shoveling is absolutely miserable. Thank god for neighbors with snow blowers.

Blizzard Jonas 2016 @ohbotherblog

Now we’re all camped out on the couch watching “Iron Giant.” The plows finally came down our street and there’s only about four hours until bedtime. I think we can do this.

Fingers crossed that Holdy’s school is open tomorrow. It’s not looking good.

flying with a toddler: why god, why?

17.11.15

I’ll admit it: I cheaped out. 

My parents chose to drive down to Disney World (about a 15-hour drive) and bravely offered to take one kid with them. I decided to send Holden with them in the car, while I flew with GB as an “infant in arms” (which you can only do with children 2 and under). The original thinking was 1) I didn’t have to pay for GB’s ticket and 2) GB is generally the calmer child.

It wasn’t long after purchasing the airline tickets that I realized my mistake. GB hates sitting still, he doesn’t like sitting on my lap, and he doesn’t watch videos or play with apps. What was I thinking? But by that point it was too late, so we sucked it up and went for it.

The morning of our flight–which left Baltimore at 10am–I forgot the stroller at the house, so I had to turn around 10 minutes down the road. Heinous traffic on the beltway made it clear that the usual 1.25-hour drive wasn’t happening this time and we were definitely going to miss our flight. Had to do some ninja magic on the phone in the car to switch our flight with Delta–luckily, there was a 10:30am flight with a layover in a different city that got us to Orlando 20 minutes earlier, so it wasn’t terrible. Sure, it cost $50 to switch, but whatever. I was trying to avoid a mental breakdown.

The good thing about cutting it close on your flight is there’s not a lot of downtime in the airport; the bad thing is the obvious stress and self-loathing. We boarded and GB was entertained by opening and closing the plane window… for the first five minutes. We still had 40 minutes on this flight and another flight to go.

He stood on me, he looked out the window, he made faces at the people behind us, he ate snacks, he threw his Nuk. I tried out the new kid headphones I had gotten for the trip, which bought me about 10-15 minutes.

Kid headphones on a flight @ohbotherblog

And then, as we began our descent, he freaked out.

Airplane meltdown with a toddler @ohbotherblog

And then he fell asleep.

Toddlers on a plane @ohbotherblog

Just in time to land.

The layover at Raleigh-Durham was nonexistent–our flight left slightly late–so we boarded the next flight almost immediately. Luckily, the airline representative could sense the frazzle that was radiating from me, so she put us in an extra-wide row.

It was like heaven. GB actually had room to stand… and lie down on the floor (whatever, don’t judge me). The lovely grandmother across the aisle from me actually took him into her lap for a bit and talked to him. He was overall pleasant and flirted with several passengers. I took it.

However by the time we boarded Disney’s Magical Express, the shuttle to our resort, GB had had it. He stood. He screamed. He whined. He threw his Nuk at me. It was 40 minutes of horror. We actually ditched the bus at the Boardwalk Resort and just walked over to the Beach Club. We’d had enough of being confined in metal boxes for a day.

On the way home from Florida, GB was ill–which was not good because he was sick, but was good because he was snuggly and quiet (I’m terrible). I accepted the three diarrhea blowouts he had during our travels as a trade-in for his good behavior. I even remained calm when the car wouldn’t start in the Express parking lot and we had to wait for help to arrive.

So… we survived. But I’m looking forward to not having to fly with a kid anytime soon.

Flying with a toddler @ohbotherblog

“power struggles”

28.07.15

This past week, I attended another great parenting workshop offered by Family Child Resources and Family First Health, two wonderful community-oriented organizations in my city. Last month, I took a class called “Parenting the Preschooler” and found it to be really helpful so I signed up again.

Truthfully, things in the behavior/discipline department have improved since the last class. Whether it’s Holden responding better to my cues or me just ignoring her craziness, overall things are looking up. Now the issues seem to be how to handle two little toddlers at very different stages of their toddlerdom at the same time. But that would be a semester-long class all to itself.

This month’s workshop was called “Power Struggles,” a topic I’d say I’m somewhat familiar with. We started by talking about the struggles we’re all currently facing and I tried very hard not to dominate the conversation, as I have a ton of great material. We were asked to identify our physical triggers that we feel before we get into an argument with our kids (muscles tensing, gritting your teeth, breathing heavily, etc.) and then we talked about ways to stop ourselves from getting worked up: namely, Square Breathing.

Square Breathing: a tip for parents of toddlers @ohbotherblog

Square Breathing: Take a deep breath in for 4 counts, hold it for 4 counts, exhale for 4 counts and hold for 4 counts. Apparently the counting requires your concentration and requires you to focus on your breath, rather than the incorrigible little monster standing before you.

Not getting worked up is important: once again the moral of this class was Do. Not. Let. Them. Win.

The Toddler Power Struggle Cycle @ohbotherblog

Our teacher demonstrated for us two hands pushing against each other. When one side stops pushing, the other side “falls”/loses. This hearkens back to the lesson from the first class: keep your cool and ignore the bratty behavior. Don’t fight with them and they lose the power to push back.

Power struggles with your toddler @ohbotherblog

For me, though, the best way to avoid getting worked up is to avoid the situation in the first place, so luckily, we talked about that too.

Toddler Power Struggles: Turn Your Word into Gold @ohbotherblog

One of my biggest takeaways from this workshop was this: “No” is a complete sentence. Don’t allow them to talk back. Don’t continue the argument. This is something I struggle with.

I also noticed that I tend to phrase things as a question when I talk to Holden: “Are you going to come eat dinner?” “Why don’t we go to the potty?” “Can you stop hitting your brother with that wooden train track?” I guess I was trying to make her feel like she has a choice in the matter, but really I just open myself up for arguments and pain.

So really, in the end, we’re all just struggling to be The Boss.

Goals of Misbehavior: Power @ohbotherblog

But in order to be The Boss, you actually have to act more like that  “Like A Boss” meme. Don’t let those little jerks cherubs ruffle your feathers. Keep cool and stand your ground.

 Parenting Like a Boss @ohbotherblog

Easier said than done, right?

calling in the professionals

29.06.15

Tips for Parenting a Preschooler @ohbotherblog

Recently, I attended a workshop series called “Parenting the Preschooler,” which is offered by Family Child Resources and Family First Health, two great organizations in my city. It’s no secret that I’m having some challenges raising a spirited little girl, so I’ll take all the help I can get.

While nothing in the class was particularly mind-blowing or new information, our instructor was very informative and knowledgeable and I found it extremely helpful and refreshing to be surrounded by parents and caregivers who were experiencing my same frustrations.

Our instructor led us like she was prepping us for battle. There was a lot of talk of not giving in, not letting them see you cry and not letting them break you. It’s us vs. the toddler… and let’s be real: a lot of times it feels that way.

The big takeaway for me was the importance of completely ignoring irrelevant behavior, as in ignoring your kid when they’re acting like a brat.

Parenting a toddler: ignoring irrelevant behavior @ohbotherblog

Our instructor emphasized the point of not giving in to the whining and the tantrum. If you break after an hour, your kid knows that they just have to whine for an hour next time and then they’ve got you. 

She warned us that the behavior will most likely get worse before it gets better. Again, don’t give in. And then, when the behavior finally stops, immediately praise your kid for working through their tantrum. This will teach them that tantrums don’t get your attention and encourage them to try a different approach to communicating.

I had an opportunity to test out this approach immediately on the car ride home with Holden. And… it worked. It took 25 minutes, but she stopped. I’ve probably used this technique at least once every other day since taking this class, and it really does get easier and the tantrums are shorter and less severe. Sometimes it’s easier said than done to completely zone out and ignore your kid who’s going full Exorcist in front of you, but I’ve really been happy with the result.

We also talked about effective Time Outs, which should be reserved for serious rule breaking like hitting, throwing things or breaking a family value you’ve deemed important.

Tips for effective Time Outs with a toddler @ohbotherblog

Another mother in the class mentioned that she had trouble getting her daughter to stay in Time Out, a problem I have been experiencing with Holden. Her solution was, rather than make her daughter sit facing the wall, she let her daughter sit with her back against the wall during Time Outs. That way her curious, busy little girl could still see what was going on around her.

Immediately after the workshop, I also Amazoned (yes, I shop on Amazon so much I use it in verb form) a new Time Out timer: the Amco Digital Color Alert Kitchen Timer/Clock.

Amco Digital Alert Color Time Out Timer @ohbotherblog

The clock slowly (soothingly) flashes yellow during Time Out, then flashes faster red during the last minute and beeps when time is up. If you set the timer for more than 10 minutes, it flashes green. At this point, the recommended Time Out length is one minute for every year of age, so three for Holden. 

I think the flashing yellow light mesmerizes her, which helps to calm her down. The red light is an indicator that she’s almost finished with her punishment. So far, this timer has been an amazing tool in my discipline arsenal. As a bonus, she’s much more calm when she comes out of Time Out than in the past.

Ain’t no shame in my game: I’m super glad that I went to this workshop and am already planning to attend next month’s workshop: “The Power Struggle.” Sound familiar?

Parenting a toddler @ohbotherblog

 

to my daughter on her third birthday

06.06.15

Holden,

Holden, Holden, Holden. Where do I begin? In this past year you have blossomed into quite the spirited, creative, silly, fiercely independent little girl. No two days are ever the same with you and absolutely no days are boring.

You started attending daycare (“school”) three days a week this year because we thought a little structure and socialization would be good for you (and for our sanity).

 

Big day for #weefees (and mom)! #ohbotherblog

A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

You enjoy school and have made some good friends, like Rylee, Daphne and Liam. You’ve learned your ABC’s and count 1-2-6-7-8-9-10-11-12 (we’ll work on that). You like to do art and take part in creative play. Lately, however, you have been getting notes about having trouble following rules, having meltdowns and hitting your friends. bad behavior notes from daycare @ohbotherblog I’ll be honest: your behavior has become a bit of a struggle for us recently, but we’re working through it. Most issues arise because you are THE most stubborn and independent person I know. You want to do everything yourself. I’ve seen you throw a 30-minute tantrum because I flushed the poop down the toilet before you could. That tantrum actually ended up with you in Urgent Care, in a story I will share over and over again in your teenage years to embarrass you.

 

  #brute #weefees #terribletwos #onlyslightexaggeration   A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

We try to work your independence to our advantage, and enlist your help around the house. You’ve been picking out all your own clothes this year, which has led to the Instagram hashtag #whatholdywore, because oh boy, there have been some doozies worth sharing. I let my toddler dress herself. #whatholdywore @ohbotherblog

Your latest trend has been wearing pants over shorts. I can’t wait to use these photos for future embarrassment opportunities. I’m willing to admit I’ve resorted to reverse psychology to get you to do what I want sometimes:

 

#whatholdyate #reversepsychology #weefees #ohbotherblog

A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

Child, you do not eat. For the longest time, all you would eat was pancakes. And sometimes sushi. It has gotten to the point that your birthday party is actually a pancake party because that is your lone dietary staple.

Pancake Birthday Party for a Picky Toddler @ohbotherblog

You have a very active imagination and you’ve really started to embrace creative play as of late. Most of your scenarios involve a dinosaur or someone needing help and calling for their mommy (which makes me feel good). You also like to play “Miss Amanda” (your former daycare teacher) and boss your stuffed animals around.

 

Packed house and only one server at this #rwyork establishment. And she’s mean to boot. #weefees A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

One time I heard you/ “Miss Amanda” say, “Fine, if you’re not going to listen to me, I’m just going to leave.” I figured, if I were teaching toddlers, I’d probably say the same thing. Speaking of the darndest things you say, other sayings that have cracked me up:

  • “I can’t BELIEVE this right now.” (complete with hands on head)
  • “What’s that face about?”
  • “Don’t let the bed bugs bite.” (your standard goodbye greeting, regardless of time of day)

You also always follow up telling me you love me with, “but I might get mad at you sometimes.” (Thanks, kid). You like to make up your own song lyrics:

 

spettacolo serale da #weefees #latergram #ohbotherblog A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

 

I sure hope this kid isn’t banking on a career as a singer/songwriter. #weefees

A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

You’ve started making some amazingly silly faces, with this one being my favorite:

 

Farm Show Carousel #latergram #ohbotherblog A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

You usually bust that one out when you’re being scolded and it’s really hard for me not to laugh.

We’ve identified this as your “lying face”:

 

I’ve identified this as her “lying” face. #ohbotherblog #weefees

A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

(That’s you promising not to hit anymore. Liar.)

You are whip-smart. You are sassy.

 

Werk it. #whatholdywore #ootd #ohbotherblog A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

And you are oh-so destructive.

 

Sunday evening art project (followed by bath night). #ohbotherblog #weefees

A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

But you are also a sweetheart. You are a very protective and attentive big sister to GB. You stuff his Nuk in his mouth when he’s upset (when you aren’t sneaking a suck or two on it yourself), and you literally smother him with hugs. And you always offer him an inferior toy before you just snatch one away from him. He follows you everywhere and you’re remarkably tolerant of it (except for when you’re in the bathroom). 

 

Easy like Sunday evening. #ohbotherblog A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

You always ask for “a kiss and a hug” when someone leaves. You give out a ton of compliments: “I like your hair.” “I like your toenails.” You ask me to “hold you” when I tuck you in at night. You tell me I’m your best friend (I’ve also heard you say that to your Duke and to GB, but I’ll let that slide).

You like to read books, sometimes making up your own stories to go with the pictures. Sometimes you “read” to me, and by “read to me,” I mean you point at the picture and say, “Tell me what’s this. Now tell me what’s this.”

You like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Doc McStuffins, Yo Gabba Gabba and Daniel Tiger.

You started gymnastics this year at Skyline. You expertly perform headstands and forward rolls and sit like a butterfly.

 

  Get right outta town with this. #weefees #ohbotherblog   A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

You are pretty much potty trained at this point, after a very trying potty training boot camp weekend in the fall. We still have our accidents and you do wear Pull-Ups to bed, but I’m very proud of you for being such a big girl.

Potty Training Weekend with a 2.5 year old @ohbotherblog

I reread last year’s letter to see what changes we’ve made since your last birthday. Back then I acknowledged that you had entered your Terrible Two’s early, that you were an overly aggressive hugger with an impressive vocabulary, who loved her dog and her brother. It’s funny to see how your personality has been solidified from such a young age.

I’m happy to share that you’re developing into a very special, smart, creative, funny, unique sweet little girl. I’ve heard you described as “someone who lives life out loud,” and I think that’s pretty accurate.

“I might get mad at you sometimes,” but that’s just because I’m still trying to figure out how to raise such an independent little woman.

I want my children to be independent headstrong people. Just not while I'm raising them @ohbotherblog

You’re three going on 13, the toughest challenge I’ve ever faced… and the most rewarding. I love you very much, Punk. Happy Third Birthday.

Potty Training Weekend with a 2.5 year old @ohbotherblog

a tale of two eaters

17.02.15

A tale of two eaters - picky toddler and hungry baby @ohbotherblog

In honor of Restaurant Week York‘s triumphant return February 21-28, let’s talk about eating, shall we?

GB’s stance toward food is best described by the classic Hasbro game popular in the 1980’s:

hungry hungry hippo toddler

 The kid loves to eat. He’s just about to the point where he’s saying, “screw the bottle; gimme the good stuff.” He’s all about the table food, grubbing hungrily and pounding on his highchair tray for more. He screeches at me if I don’t feed him fast enough, so I pretty much just let him feed himself baby-size chunks of food now. Needless to say, mealtimes are somewhat messy.

Holden’s attitude toward food, however, is best described by the new soon-to-be-classic book by the same authors of Go the F*** to Sleep:

you-have-to-fing-eat

It even looks like Holden on the cover.

Holden’s current diet consists of:

  • Pancakes
  • Half chocolate/half regular milk
  • Organic hipster “toaster pastries” that I bought because I figure if all she’ll eat are Pop Tarts, I should at least buy her ones made with “real” ingredients
  • Toothpaste (she hasn’t quite figured out the whole teeth-brushing business, though she of course insists on doing it herself)

It’s seriously the most frustrating thing. She used to be such a good eater. Now she’s just not that into it… in my presence anyway. Allegedly she eats her lunch at school every day, so at least I know she’s eating a real meal at least three times a week. But otherwise, breakfast foods are about the extent of her palate. It’s brinner most days of the week.

This is just a phase, right?

ps, if you haven’t listened to Bryan Cranston read You Have to F***ing Eat, here’s a preview. Language, obviously.

still not letting it go: we went to a “Frozen” tea party

15.12.14

In my never-ending quest to assuage my working mom guilt and spend some fun time with Holden, I bought us tickets to attend a “Frozen”-themed tea party by a local company called The Enchanted Teapot. If you’ll recall from our “Frozen” On Ice almost-misadventure, my attempts don’t always go according to plan.  Remember this?

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

This time, however, not only did Holden actually wear the Anna dress, she let me do her hair in braided pigtails AND she wore a flower wreath on her head.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

(Notice that sweet cowlick? A straight part is never going to be in this girl’s future.)

She did have a brief freak-out once the dress was on, but I soon realized it was because she also wanted to wear her “bug” wings.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

(We had just gotten through a weekend of watching “Peter Pan Live” on repeat so she had a slight Tinkerbell obsession.)

Oh, and I went ahead and got dressed up too.

 

A photo posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on


Why, yes, that is a fake-braid headband. I’m straight up bald in the front from having GB so my braid situation was not working out.

The dress is one I actually owned from a funny fancy-dress party in grad school. It’s literally 12 sizes too big and I had to pin myself into it.

I think we looked pretty cute, though–ridiculous dress and all.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

The tea party was adorable, with precious little “Frozen”-themed treats.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

Holden was very well behaved (at the start), and was so excited.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

She colored “Frozen” pictures.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

She met Anna.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

And Elsa. She was so starstruck.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

They sang songs.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

Holden, of course, had to steal the show. She even threw in a few forward rolls and twirls for good measure.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

They read stories.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

Notice Holden butted her way right on up to the front. At one point she even stood up, blocking the other kids’ view. Luckily, the rest of them were older and gracious to her being young and self-centered. There’s no real (quiet) way to push through a crowd to get your loud, stubborn two-year-old to sit down in this situation. I tried.

She even helped herself to Elsa’s throne.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

She really was good for 95% of the event. She did have a meltdown toward the end when we had to wait in line for the official photo with the princesses. She may or may not have thrown herself on the floor and screamed, but I had already paid the $15 for the photos, so we were getting them, dammit. Her crocodile tears stopped as soon as she approached Anna and Elsa.

And then she hugged and tried to kiss them. They were both very sweet about turning their head for a cheek kiss, even though Holden was clearly going for the mouth.

Overall, we had a (surprisingly?) great time. Even if I was one of the only adults who dressed up.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

I mean, look how happy she was:

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

I’ll make sure to show her these photos when she’s 15 and tells me she hates me on a regular basis.

"Frozen" Tea Party @ohbotherblog

holidays, amirite?

03.12.14

So last week I was all prepared to write a really positive, fun post about how well Holden’s potty training has been going and how much fun we’re having getting ready for the holidays.

And then all hell broke loose.

Broken Christmas tree @ohbotherblog

Why yes, that is my just-decorated Christmas tree after the stem base folded and snapped… at the exact moment that Holden had herself an accident of the “Number Two” variety and was spilling the contents onto the floor in an attempt to free herself of her soiled clothing*… all while GB was screaming at the top of his lungs. So, not a great night overall.

Thanksgiving was a bit of a struggle getting the kids ready and out the door to my parents’ house.

Thanksgiving Unhappy Kids @ohbotherblog

Thanksgiving Unhappy Kids @ohbotherblog

And then I had a slight, um, incident with the stuffing I was to bring to dinner.

Floor stuffing @ohbotherblog 

Sorry, mom.

In all, it did turn out to be a very nice day with family. Holden did have to have no less than three time-outs during the actual meal itself, but at least the Floor Stuffing still tasted delicious.

Time Out to Say Happy Thanksgiving @ohbotherblog

So since we can’t run away and hide all holiday season (though I would very much like to), I’m still trying to embrace it. Our Elf on the Shelf, Elfis, has returned. Don’t worry–you’re not going to see super-cute Pinterest-type elf situations here cuz ain’t nobody got time for that. 

Elfis, the Elf on the Shelf @ohbotherblog

 Holden touched him almost immediately, which did require some medical attention.

Elf on the Shelf Hospital after Touching @ohbotherblog

It looks like Elfis is going to survive. I hope I can say the same for us after these holidays.

 

*ps–In all seriousness, Holden’s potty training is going surprisingly well. She’s been relatively accident-free at school and our evenings have been somewhat low-stress in terms of accidents. I will say, however, when she has an accident, it is an Accident with a capital “A,” as evidenced by the story above. But we’re plugging away and I’m pretty proud of our progress so far. 

potty training weekend

16.11.14

I’m gonna be honest: the odds were against us this Potty Training Weekend. I woke up Saturday with absolutely no voice whatsoever. GB woke up with pinkeye. But Holden woke up ready for “no more diapers!” and to take on this potty training weekend I had been hyping up for days. So that’s all that really mattered. We soldiered through because this was the only weekend in the foreseeable future that we could dedicate solely to this purpose.

Potty Training Weekend with a 2.5 year old @ohbotherblog

So these are the two blog posts I studied in anticipation of this weekend:

Day One was a long, pantsless day, broken up into 15-minute segments of potty going. I set the timer on my phone and we visited the potty religiously every 15 minutes (ish). Sometimes she peed. Sometimes she just sat. But then we’d wipe, flush, wash hands, and–if she went–get a stamp (“tattoo”) and a sticker.

Potty Training Weekend with a 2.5 year old @ohbotherblog

Per the blog posts I studied, you’re supposed to ply the kid with lots of fluids and salty snacks to make them pee more. Holden doesn’t eat or drink anything unless it’s on her own terms, so that really didn’t happen. Though I will say she had an above-average day in chocolate milk consumption. 

About mid-morning, she came downstairs and said the words every potty-training parent dreads: “I pooped.” We rushed to the potty, took off the panties (carefully so as to collect the… “droppings”… and then drop ’em in the toilet), and sat her butt down. As I talked to rasped at her about having that gotta-poop feeling and coming to tell mommy… she pooped again. In the toilet.

This kid pooped all day long. I seriously wasn’t prepared for it–it’s like she saved up all week for this one day. Luckily most of it was in the toilet and not in her panties.

I did put her in Pull-Ups for her nap–judge me all you want, I’m not dealing with that mess yet. In the afternoon/evening, the every-15-minute potty visits were wearing on both of us. But we persevered and survived the first day. She was in Pull-Ups again for the overnight too.

I should mention that, despite having pinkeye and a fever, GB was a real trooper and chilled the whole day, just along for the ride.

I should also mention that it’s already not easy to communicate a point to a 2-year-old. When you have no voice, it’s damn near impossible. 

I woke up Day Two with more of a voice but feeling absolutely sick as a dog. GB woke up fever-free and with somewhat brighter eyes. Holden woke up eager to start Day Two. And again, that’s all that mattered.

Our morning went along swimmingly, again in 15-minute increments. I even tried to sneak in a quick shower while Holden played quietly in her room.

And of course, that’s when the accident happened.

And of course, it was a #2 accident.

But–brightside–it was the only accident all day! So we went from six accidents on Day One to one accident on Day Two. The rest of the day went along incident-free. Holden actually seemed excited when the timer went off every 15 minutes for her bathroom trip.

Potty Training Weekend with a 2.5 year old @ohbotherblog

I’m back to work tomorrow and Holden’s back to school. They already take Holden’s class to the potty every half an hour at her Daycare so tomorrow she’ll just be doing it in panties instead of diapers (don’t worry–I’m packing lots of extras!).

So obviously it is not ideal to potty train a child when you are sick and have no voice. Or when your other kid is sick. Or when it’s 40 degrees outside. But whatever. This was the weekend we had to do it so we sucked it up and powered through. It honestly wasn’t as bad as I was envisioning.

Potty Training Weekend with a 2.5 year old @ohbotherblog

So now my question is: when does she start telling me she has to go? When does that start to click? 

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