I know Brandon has been 2 for a while now, but I’m finally getting around to writing about his great 2-year old self. I’m in a bit of denial, I feel like we were just celebrating his first birthday. Guess time flies when you add a pregnancy and newborn to the mix! I’m really trying to live in the moment with him, as I’m sure with school and activities increasing in the coming years we won’t have as much quality time (also trying not to daydream about the bazillion things I’ll be able to do with him in school all day!).
Brandon has really come out of his shell this past year. He always erred on the timid side, but has become much more assertive with adults and children and has also gotten more involved in the classes and playdates that we go to. This summer we’ve done soccer and music classes in the park, and he really loves both. At the end of soccer he is dog tired and dirty, so if nothing else, it’s a great way for him to run out some of his energy. Music has always been one of his favorite things (he must get this from Brad) and currently, he can often be found walking the house with his mini guitar in hand. There’s always some kind of kiddie music playing here. Mickey hotdog song is the most requested.
Our biggest struggles recently have been with whining and eating. He babbles constantly and his word know-how is growing every day, but he gets really frustrated when we don’t understand him, which usually leads to whining. He’s only had a handful of what I would call temper tantrums, and we generally put him in his crib to cool off when he does. Hopefully as his vocabulary increases and he learns other ways of asking for what he wants the whining will subside. As for eating, Brandon is a skinny kid who does not like to eat, so we naturally have problems. Normally, I would say that he will eat when he’s hungry and not to worry about it, but weight actually is a bit of an issue for him so we’ve tried nearly everything to get him additional calories. Dessert at every meal, creative & fun presentation, serving something I know he likes, etc. Not too much has worked and I am certainly open to ideas! Lately, I’ve been serving his meals in muffin tins and not letting him leave the table without at least trying something from every section. This has cut down on some of our battles, but we are still giving him pediasure after dinner to make sure he gets at least those calories before bed.
On a positive note with regards to the usual toddler struggles, sleeping is great! He still does nearly 12 hours at night and takes a 2 1/2 – 3 hour nap every day. I am so glad we did sleep training with him early on, it has paid dividends at this point. He’s still in a crib, but before Rylan came, we bought him a new one that converts to an adorable toddler bed, so we can switch whenever he seems to be ready for it. He’s totally content in the crib right now so I don’t think we will switch for a while. Independent play has also been amazing. While the Ipad is currently his favorite toy, he will play beautifully by himself in his room for up to an hour at a time. I love it!
One of the biggest changes for Brandon this year was that he became a big brother. For the most part, Brandon thinks of Rylan in a similar capacity to the dog. He likes him and is often amused by the funny baby things he does, but he still wants to know that he can have Mommy & Daddy’s attention when desired. He’s been incredibly gentle thus far. He really enjoys bringing out all the baby toys and piling them on top of Rylan. He is also Daddy’s helper at bath time and will use a cup to rinse off the baby. Rylan doesn’t seem to mind, and is almost always entertained and enthralled with his big brother.
This has been an amazing time for me as a mother, as I feel like you can practically see the wheels turning and the connections being made in that little 2-year old mind. He’s starting school in a month and I can only imagine what he is going to come home with to show us.
Here’s a typical day in the life of Brandon:
7:15 – wake-up, get dressed, drink juice/eat cheerios/play in nursery while Mom feeds Rylan
7:45 – breakfast
8:15 – chores (clear table, brush teeth, feed Suki)
8:30 – room time (independent play)
9-11 – outside for class/run/gym/playground
11 – free play
11:30 – dvd or Ipad
12 – lunch
12:45-3:30 – nap
3:30 – snack & play!
4:30 – learning/crafts with Mom
5 – room time (independent play)
5:30 - dvd or Ipad
6 – Dad comes home (highlight of his day!) and dinner
7 – bath with Dad and bottle of pediasure, family reading time
7:30 – Bed!!