These last few months have been a mixed bag with Brandon. It’s been surreal to watch his personality develop and how he really has grown into a little person. He will make jokes, sing out loud, crack himself up, comfort you when he thinks you’re sad, and even play with his little brother and friends. Being able to interact with him and actually have fun with him has made my life as a mother more fulfilling and interesting. I now have a little sidekick. At the same time, they don’t call it the terrible twos for nothing. We have our share of tantrums and upset moments, and Brandon has become all too familiar with “time out.” Learning how to control his emotions is something we work on daily, as I suspect most toddlers do, and it’s encouraging to see him make progress, however slow that might be.
Brandon did very well with our move a few months ago and is totally settled and happy in his new space. He loves the fact that we now have a playroom, and having the extra space made those last chilly months when we were stuck indoors so much more bearable. He especially had a great time when Brad and I left for a quick vacation and my parents came to watch them (thanks Mom & Dad!). He loves to have friends over to play, and one of the biggest developments we’ve had recently is the fact that he now requests specific friends. Although they change frequently, he definitely has his favorites. Brandon tends to be very mellow with other kids and seems to like being around similar personalities. He has started interacting with and trying to get Rylan to play with him, which is probably the cutest and most endearing thing this mom has ever seen. He still gets upset when Rylan destroys his train set or puzzle, but that’s pretty understandable, and we are working on the “proper” way of handling it (which does not include falling to the ground crying).
I am very happy to report that Brandon is starting to fill out physically and is eating more than ever before. He’s always been on the smaller side, and has never been a big eater (even getting him to finish things he liked, like cookies, was a challenge), but has shown more of an interest in food lately. It could definitely be because he’s more active than before, but I think that seeing his little brother devour food has also played a part. He also is more open to foods once they’ve had them for snack at school. Never under estimate the power of positive peer pressure!
He is still just as obsessed with the Ipad as ever, even though he only gets it for a small amount of time each day. I’ve been beyond floored with how much he’s retained from it. We have a number of learning apps on there, but I’ve never been one to force learning upon the kid. I like to think that he has a lot of time to learn in the future, and the focus, as of this point, should be on having fun and learning some of life’s basics (like using a fork or covering your mouth when you cough). You can imagine my surprise when the kid just starts spelling things out when he sees letters. He knows all of his letters now, upper and lower case, and can even tell you the sounds that most of them make (so when you say “fish” and enunciated the “f,” he can tell you what letter it starts with). To be totally honest, this kinda freaked me out. I never taught him anything that specific and, after discussing this with his teachers, learned that they don’t start doing letters in school for at least another year. So my only conclusion is that the Ipad is really an amazing learning tool. Still unsure about how I feel about the whole thing (I don’t want to bombard him with anything he’s not ready for), but he gets it for 30 minutes max a day and there are a number of “just for fun” apps that he can play if he wants. I will be sure to do a post soon of some of our favorites, especially the ones that he seems to be learning so much from.
We made one major change to the kids schedule a few weeks ago. We now do baths earlier in the evening and dinner a little later, which allows my husband time to play with the kids once he gets home from work. This also is setting us up for more time in the evenings as the days get longer. Hurry up Summer!! Here’s a typical day for Brandon at 33 months:
7:30 – wake-up, get dressed
7:45 – breakfast
8:15 – run with mommy, walk Suki, or off to school (2 mornings a week)
9:45 – snack & playtime with mom (learning activities/crafts/baking)
10:45/11 – Outside! (playground, gym, school pick-up)
12:30 – lunch
1:15-3:30 – nap
3:30 – snack & play/outing (usually schedule playdates for this time)
4:30 – baths
5 – independent play
5:30 – dvd or Ipad
6 – Dad comes home (highlight of his day!) and dinner
7 – bottle of pediasure, family reading time, brush teeth
7:30 – Bed!!