Entries Tagged as 'toddlers'

bedtime bedlam

15.02.16

We have a problem in the oh bother house. A big problem. A bedtime problem.

It started a few months ago, but we’ve now reached Desperation Point, peaking during the week we were snowed in (god, I hate snow).

Bedtime has become a nightly battle with Holden. She doesn’t want to go to bed. She doesn’t want to brush her teeth. She wants me to tell her one more story. She wants to tell me a story. She wants me to rub her back.

Once her door is closed, she immediately comes out five more times because a) she wants some water, b) the dog moved to the foot of the bed, c) one of her drawers is open, d) I didn’t turn out all the lights and close all the doors on the second floor, e) she just wants to see my face.

She gets up in the middle of the night because: a) she has to pee, b) the dog moved to the foot of the bed, c) she can’t find her flashlight that she insists on sleeping with, d) she had a bad dream, e) she doesn’t know.

During the snowstorm, she started wetting the bed at night, after having been Pull-Up free for months. After three straight nights of washing all of her bed linens, I gave up and went back to Pull-Ups. Her Pull-Up is now wet every morning.

It’s to the point now that we both fear bedtime. I’ve been trying various tactics to improve things.

Dream Catcher to improve bedtime @ohbotherblog

  • I’ve been using some random old Bath & Bodyworks Lavender Pillow Mist as “Good Dreams Spray.”*
  • I bought her a dream catcher.
  • I gave her a mini flashlight to sleep with.
  • I bought her a nightlight (that she refuses to use).
  • We practice deep breathing and talking about the good dreams she’s going to have.

When I was little, I remember I used to have trouble sleeping too. I’d make my mom leave the hall light on and my door open “just a crack.” I’d lie awake for hours. Sometimes I’d sneak over to my little brother’s room and pull him over to my bed with me.

Because of my experience, I’ve always thought I want the kids to share a room at some point in their lives. Maybe that point is now.

The problem is (or… it’s not really a problem so much…) that GB is an excellent sleeper. The kid essentially requests to go to bed and never fights it. He’s never climbed out of his crib once. Do I really want to mess with that?

Probably not. Not yet anyway… but I did find a super cute bunk bed for when the time comes.

Dorel Living Brady Bunk Bed @ohbotherblog

In the meantime, I guess we just power through and hope this phase ends soon.

*Here’s a cute recipe for “Monster Spray.”

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.

snowed in

23.01.16

Snowed in at the oh bother house during Winter Storm Jonas @ohbotherblog

The kids have been up for one hour and 48 minutes and I’m already questioning whether we’re going to make it through the weekend. Here in southern PA, we’re right smack dab in the middle of Jonas’s wrath. It’s been coming down hard since last evening with no sign of stopping.

You know you’re a parent of young kids when your first thought when you hear about a snow storm is, “oh crap, I’m going to be stuck inside with those jerks for several days.” 

I’ve already made pancakes from scratch and had to explain the difference between “blizzard” and “lizard” at least twelve times. We’re on our third episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Oh, and GB is being super clingy today, so I’m literally doing everything with one arm.

Clingy GB @ohbotherblog

Like I even had to pee with him sitting on my lap.

I’ll let you know of our progress. How are you faring?

Christmas Meh-gic

15.12.15

As I’m navigating the holiday season with two small children, I’ve come to a realization: the more “magical” something is supposed to be, the less “magical” the experience is in real life.

For example…

Disney World:
Disney World Meltdowns @ohbotherblog

Birthdays:

Parenting a toddler @ohbotherblog

Special trips/activities:

A trip to the North Museum in Lancaster @ohbotherblog

Holidays:

Thanksgiving Unhappy Kids @ohbotherblog

Activities requiring costumes:

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

Disney on Ice:

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

I feel so much pressure–especially during the holidays–to make lasting memories and give my kids a magical childhood, that the outcome inevitably never lives up to the hype. It’s the parenting equivalent of every single New Year’s Eve I’ve ever experienced.

Like… We went to visit Santa Claus a few weeks ago. The kids both had a meltdown at the same time, with both of them literally flailing on the floor whilst screaming. A friend asked if I wanted her to take GB outside so I could get a photo with Holdy and my actual response was, “I am not leaving here without a f*cking photo of my kids with f*cking Santa.”

Anyway, just a friendly reminder to myself and others to chill the hell out and lay off the Christmas Magic. New Year’s Eve always sucks anyway.

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

disney craycation recap

08.11.15

Welp, we survived. We went to Disney World with two toddlers–a three year old and a nineteen month old.

We got back on Wednesday and my response to people’s questions about the trip has been, “Well, the kids were terrrrrrible, but we still managed to have fun.”

That’s not just me exaggerating, by the way: the kids were really, really badly behaved… one more so than the other. Any guesses as to which one?

Pack your princess dresses for Disney World @ohbotherblog

Whaaaat? Not that little princess; no way. Oh, yes way.

I get it: the kids are overstimulated, they’re way off schedule, they’re missing naps, they’re sleeping in weird rooms, they’re hot, it’s crowded, they’re waiting in lines, they’re exhausted. Also, having my parents and myself all in the same place provides many opportunities to try to play us off each other and test out our patience… and discipline levels.

But let’s just say I made many parents feel good about themselves and their children during this trip.

People have been following up my admission by saying, “but your photos looked like you had such a great time!” Listen, you’ve seen the clickbait articles; you can make anything look good on Instagram.

If I were completely honest on social media, the trip would have looked primarily like this:

GB sleeping all over Disney World @ohbotherblog GB sleeping all over Disney World @ohbotherblog GB sleeping all over Disney World @ohbotherblog GB sleeping all over Disney World @ohbotherblogNaps in Disney World @ohbotherblog

And this:

Disney World Meltdowns @ohbotherblog

Oh and I guess some of this:

Mickey Waffles in Disney World @ohbotherblog

In all honesty, we did have a great time, despite the less-than-pleasant kids’ behavior. We ate a ton of great food and had some really fun experiences.

I’ve already had people asking me for suggestions for their next Disney trip, so I’m going to try to break it down into multiple posts focusing on the various parks, dining, etc. Given how good I am about updating the blog currently, this may take me until my next Disney trip to complete, but hey, we’ve all gotta have goals. Keep checking back for updates.

In the meantime, I’ll leave you with this tip for your next Disney trip: leave the kids at home. Disney World is awesome for adults.

disney with two toddlers. here goes nothing.

27.10.15

Disney World with two toddlers @ohbotherblog

I’ve had a rough year. I’m so ready for a vacation. Fortunately, I’m leaving for one tomorrow. Possibly unfortunately, I’m going to Disney World with two toddlers. 

If you’ll recall, I took Holden to Disney World when she was 10 months old. Now, I’m not just some masochist: my parents are members of the Disney Vacation Club so we go relatively frequently. And I’m going to have some reinforcements, so it’s all going to be okay… right?

It’s the International Food & Wine Festival so there’s definitely that to look forward to. And the mid-80 degree weather isn’t too shabby. And my parents are driving down with Holdy so they took the bulk of the luggage–that I literally only packed today–with them. This won’t be so bad… right?

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that I’ll be flying with a beyond-fidgety 19-month-old who hates to be held and can’t be bribed with videos or apps. But I’ll have international food and wine waiting for me at the end of it, so that’s worth 2.5 hours of shame and misery… right?

We’ll be there over Halloween, so I did get to cheat a bit on the Halloween costumes this year. So that’s a plus.

Taking all the princess dresses to Disney World @ohbotherblog

I packed every single princess dress Holdy already owns (including two I bought at the consignment store) so she’ll have her pick of Halloween costumes… and I’ll be able to avoid buying a $90 princess dress at the resort. I also made Holdy an appointment at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique on Halloween. Of course, the appointment is at 6:30pm and she goes to bed at 8:30pm, but I’m told they use enough hairspray that it should last a few days. See, we’re totally gonna be fine… right?

For GB, I ordered a 4-pc pajama set of Woody and Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story, which I’ll be pairing with an old toy cowboy hat of Holdy’s.

Woody and Buzz Lightyear Pajamas for Halloween @ohbotherblog

So yeah, I may be jerry-rigging this whole Halloween thing–and this whole trip for that matter–but I deserve this break, dammit, so we’re making it work. 

Follow along on Instagram to see if I make it through unscathed. See ya soon, Mickey.

the mean jar

10.10.15

the "mean" jar for toddler behavior redirection @ohbotherblog

I’m probably jinxing myself terribly right now, but I just have to give a shout out to Holden’s much-improved behavior in the past few weeks.

I started to write a post this week about Holden’s improved behavior as of late, but–expectedly–as soon as I wrote it, her good behavior crapped the bed. Le sigh.

But yeah, up until Thursday night, Holden had been almost like a new kid–polite, helpful, sharing with her brother, eating her dinner, etc.

Part of the improvement could no doubt be attributed to the new preschool she started a month or so ago. I’ve also been a bit more diligent about explaining behavior expectations to her before we go to a new place or embark on a new activity.

But about two weeks ago, we also started using these behavior jars. These were a tip given to me by another parent in the “Raising a Toddler” workshops I took this summer. Basically you have two jars–one for “good” behavior and one for “bad” behavior–and you place beads/tokens/etc. in each jar accordingly as needed.

For me, I realized that I needed to do a better job of praising positive behavior, rather than always pointing the negative behavior, so these jars have provided an opportunity to do that. To be honest though, “a bead in the mean jar” is proving to be a pretty effective threat as well.

Living with a threenager continues to be a struggle, but it seems like we’re figuring it out bit by bit. Let’s call it “two steps forward, one step back.”

playing catch-up

13.09.15

Every night, I sit down to write a blog post and every night something comes up, be it a teething 18-month-old, a three-year-old with disciplinary issues, a house full of laundry, a dog that has peed on the floor or, frankly, just a new episode of Playing House that I’d rather watch. Anyway, long story short, life gets in the way. So here’s what we’ve missed.

We got a new pet.

Our new turtle, Rupert @ohbotherblog

Meet Rupert, our new turtle.

Rupert, our new turtle @ohbotherblog

Truth be told, Holden kept calling him, “Poo Poo,” so I figured “Rupert” was an acceptable alternative.

We had an adventurous summer and learned about Holden’s natural affinity for climbing.

Holden is a future American Ninja Warrior @ohbotherblog

I’m seriously considering finding some Parkour courses for this future American Ninja Warrior.

GB is teething and has some crazy big molars coming in.

GB is teething @ohbotherblog

Poor little guy has had some fevers and lots of snot and saliva… but that hasn’t kept him from getting into any and everything in the house.

I had to work a lot.

Watching mommy work @ohbotherblog

The beginning of September was really busy for me at work, so that of course came with a side of some working mom guilt. But my job is important to me and I feel like the work I do is important so I power through. And I try to include the kids when I can.

Holden at York City Boutique Week @ohbotherblog

Holden started at a new preschool.

Holden's first day at preschool @ohbotherblog

We’re all very excited that Holden has started a new five-day-a-week program. My fingers are crossed that the structure and curriculum will do big things for her because honestly, her sass and behavior issues have increased over the summer as well.

Holden's first day of preschool @ohbotherblog

One thing is for certain, her art skills are blossoming. That kid comes home with like 18 pieces of art every day after school now.

Holden the artist @ohbotherblog

Oh and obviously her amazing fashion sense continues to be on fleek.

So, all in all, an eventful and fun few months. We’re all doing pretty great.

The ohbother kids @ohbotherblog

Just busy. Oh, bother.

 

Motormouth

19.08.15

GB has been talking up a storm lately and by “talking,” I mean making marbley-mouthed, drunkenly slurred sounds that resemble real words.

Good morning, GB. #babyfees

A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

He’s always been a good mimic: he’s been quacking like a duck for several months when he sees a rubber duckie, and he can even trill his tongue like he’s at a fiesta.

 

 

GB says “quack quack quack” before he says “mom.” Figures. #babyfees #ohbotherblog

 

A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

But lately, not only has he been pointing at everything and repeating the names for them, he’s been saying full sentences–I swear!

Of course I have no video evidence because the kid lives to prove me wrong, but the other day he was whining in his highchair while I was cleaning up from breakfast and I asked, “what’s wrong?” He replied with, “get me OUT!” Clear. As. Day.

The other day, he picked up a hat, walked it over and said, “Here’s your hat.” The adults in the room always look at each other like, “did we just hear that?” And then GB goes back to cooing and making indeterminate sounds.

In addition to sentences, he’s been saying some pretty complicated words for a 17-month-old. Last night while taking a bath, he pointed up and said, “shower.” He’s said “Holdy” before too.

The one word he still absolutely refuses to say?

Mom.

 

I guess he wants a snack. #babyfees #ohbotherblog

A video posted by ohbotherblog (@nomiddlenamemeg) on

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Theme by Blogmilk   Coded by Brandi Bernoskie