Monday, February 25, 2008

Hopping like a sock monkey

Yesterday Jack seemed to have a big brain growing day. He spoke several complete sentences (even using correct verb tenses!), hopped all over the place, and sang songs. He'd done a little of each of these before, but not with as much skill or intensity, and not all at once.

One of the songs he enjoys singing is a variation of a Yo Gabba Gabba song. We call it the family song. The original song goes, "a mommy, a daddy, a sister, a brother (etc.)... that is our family." Jack's version has a mommy, a da, a beebo, a pinecone monkey, a red engine, a blue engine, train tracks, Auntie Lola red caboose, pooh bear, tigger, rabbit, eeyore, piglet, and Christopher Robin (contents may vary). If we forget one of the members of the family Jacks says, "somebody missing."

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Nobody said it was easy

Yesterday was day one of potty training boot camp -- at least that's how it felt to me. The first half of the day went pretty much as I imagined it would, with a couple big puddles in the dining room, some damp underpants, and a bunch of stickers on his potty chart. After his nap though, Jack refused to put his underpants on, and our afternoon was full of tantrums and clinginess. Overall, a totally exhausting day.

Today Jack is willing to wear underpants, but he really doesn't want to sit on the potty. Looks like we'll back off for a few days and then try again.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

For now

For now our daily routine is well established and regular. Jack's doing great napping and sleeping, and is eating pretty well. He continues to adore trains and monkeys and is currently in love with the Winnie the Pooh stories.

During this calm center in the midst of Jack's toddler storm, we are about to shake things up in a big way. It's time for potty training.

Jack's been communicating a strong interest, so armed with many new underpants and a timer, we're going to give it a go.

The longer I am a mom, the more I believe that parenthood is one giant impermanence lesson. Jack changes so fast -- every day he is growing and learning and becoming more himself. I hope he will keep growing each day of his life. Potty training is one of the challenges that mark a transition from baby to childhood. It's happy and sad at the same time. For now.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Here comes the sun

After a few weeks of winter storms which kept us cooped up inside, we are all enjoying the wonderful sunny "spring" weather.

Jack is sleeping and eating better these days. Our big new development is that he is putting himself to sleep for his nap and bedtime. Many moons ago he was pretty easy going at nap and bedtime -- we could put him down in his crib awake and he would go to sleep. But when he started teething we couldn't get him to sleep without holding him. This was one of the reasons we put him in a bed at a relatively early age -- he was so big that it was agony hoisting him over the crib rail while he was asleep. In the past few months we've snuggled with him in his bed until he fell asleep, then crept out of the room. Now we cuddle and read and sometimes sing songs (when Jack lets us!). We tuck him in with tigger, pooh, and rabbit (not the Disney animals, just 3 stuffed animals that vaguely resemble the Winne the Pooh characters). Then we leave and listen to the baby monitor. Sometimes he plays with his friends a bit, talks and sings quietly, other days he falls straight asleep. So far he has stayed in bed except for yesterday's nap, when he got up, opened his door (!), and came running out asking to sit on the potty. We did that, then I got back into bed with him and snuggled him until he fell asleep (I think I stayed with him mostly because I was in shock that he had opened the door, and wanted to sit on the potty).

We are thrilled with the improvements in his sleep habits. We never wanted to do cry-it-out or have bedtime become a battleground with screaming and crying and tantrums. Jack actually says he likes taking naps, and bedtime is currently pretty mellow, with some protests, but nothing we can't work through.

Our next challenge: potty training. Jack and I went to the store this morning and bought some underpants (his request). Stay tuned (if you have any advice please post it here!).