Thursday, June 26, 2014

Carter - 2 1/2 Years Old

The last post I did on Carter was a whopping 6 months ago!  Man oh man the differences in the first 6 months of the second year!  I’ll go through the main categories I’ve been doing in the past and just add any tidbits I find necessary to document. 
Still rockin’ the size 4’s.  We’ve done pullups a few times, but most of the time, Carter prefers the Sesame Street diapers, though he’s now starting to ask for the pullups every now and again.  Once we get big time into potty training, we’ll use pullups more.  Speaking of potty training, Carter has poo poo’d (sorry for the wording) in the potty TWICE.  It’s not something he asks to do, it just so happened that I hit it at the right time when he had to go.  There were a few days where he was constantly asking to go to the potty, but then he stopped.  Now I ask him to come to the potty and he usually says no-which is why I’m not potty training yet.  I am trying to get him psyched about it though.  I’ve shown him pictures of big boy Elmo and Cookie Monster underwear from Target and he loves looking at them and knows that they are for “potty training” (yes, he actually says potty training).  He also knows that we will be using M&M’s as a treat during the process and that if he keeps his diaper dry, he’ll get an M&M every so often and then when he goes in the potty he’ll get many M&M’s.  I’m hoping all this talk of big boy underpants and M&Ms is getting him excited.  He has, within the last couple of weeks, started telling us he had to tee tee and he actually does tee tee…a lot!  But he still wets his diaper too.   I think I’m going to hold off until July or August to attempt the 3 day boot camp method.  IMG_4797      
Shoe Size
He can still fit into his size 7 shoes, but I have recently gone ahead and bought some size 8’s.  They’re still slightly too big.  We went to Kicks to buy some new shoes and they sized him and he still measures at a 7.  But right now he wears anything from a 7-8 because that’s what we have.
Shirts are 2t or 24 months.  For shorts, the kid can still wear some 18 month shorts!!!  I was dreading spending a ton of money buying shorts for summer wardrobe and wondered if some of his shorts from last summer would still fit so I pulled them out and sure enough, about 75% of them still fit.  So he usually wears a 2t or 24 month shirt with 18 month shorts.  He’s a small kid, what can I say!
We still struggle with a relatively picky eater.  I think we tried too hard to make sure he liked “healthy” foods when he was younger by staying away from the bad stuff and now he won’t even touch the bad stuff.  He doesn’t eat most foods kids love like hamburgers, pizza, hot dogs, grilled cheese, peanut butter jelly sandwiches, etc.  Most of this boils down to the fact that he still won’t eat bread.  I’m cutting him some slack because he’s only 2, but when this kid gets to be around 4 or 5, he’ll be eating pizza and hamburgers or he will go hungry.  Period.  We did manage to get him to eat pieces of the cheese off of a  Little Caesar’s pizza at a birthday party the other day so that was a success!  Part of this is our fault too because Justin and I don’t typically eat these things, therefore Carter’s never had the opportunity to eat them.  All these are mistakes that we will correct with Garrett once he starts eating table food.  That being said, Carter’s absolute FAVORITE meal is mexican.  He LOVES LOVES LOVES to go eat at a mexican restaurant and is constantly asking to go.  He even knows that when we turn right out of our neighborhood, it means we’re going to a mexican restaurant and he gets extremely excited.  He always gets a chicken quesadilla with rice and he devours momma’s cheese dip.  I’m working on him with peanut butter jelly sandwiches.  We know he likes peanut butter because he’ll dip his apples and animal crackers in it.  So we’re going to start trying to get him to eat a peanut butter and banana sandwich.  We’ll see how that goes.  I put a mini corn dog on his plate the other night and he literally screamed until I took it off.  Bribed him to eat it with M&Ms (his FAVORITE) and everything and he still wouldn’t touch it.
Big changes in this department.  For starters, Carter went through about a 2 week phase where he was waking up in the middle of the night screaming.  Every night was different.  Some nights he wanted water, some nights he wanted to be re-tucked in, other nights he just wanted to chat.  You can imagine how frustrating this got, especially when Justin was out of town.  It was like having a newborn again.  He was waking up anywhere from 1-3 times in the middle of the night.  After about a week, Justin realized that this all started happening around the same time that Carter mysteriously stopped sucking his thumb.  Out of nowhere the kid decided not to suck his thumb anymore!  Since that was kind of how he soothed himself at night, it may very well have led to him waking up wanting us to soothe him.  Anyway, we knew that it was just going to take some time and after another week, he went back to sleeping on his own through the night. 
Another change was the transition to a toddler bed.  This happened when he was about 2 years 5 months old.  It went so smoothly!!!  I’ve read that if you wait until around this time to transition, they are so used to being in their cribs that they really don’t have a desire to get out in the middle of sleeping.  I found this to be true with Carter.  At night, he would get into his bed after our nighttime routine and we will tuck him in and then we leave.  He may play with his animals and talk to himself for a while, but he won’t get out of the bed and will eventually fall asleep.  The only time he gets out of the bed is in the mornings when he wakes up and he goes to get his books to read until we come upstairs to get him.  Naps started out a different story.  For some reason, he would get out of the bed during naps and sometimes he’d even wake up after only an hour nap screaming-as if he was confused about the bed he was in, but this only last a few days and then he took naps like normal too.  Overall, super easy transition for him.  And he loves his bed!
**The above picture was taken in January 2014 when he started climbing out of his crib for the first time.  It wasn’t until the next month when he finally fell out of the crib all the way to the floor.  He cried, but was not injured and it scared the dickens out of him and after that one incident, he never tried to get out of the crib again.  This was, however, when we began thinking about a toddler bed transition.**
We do so many different things now that I may not even make this a category anymore, or at the very least change it to “favorite things” or something like that.  It’s summer time now so most waketimes include us being outside.  He loves to use sidewalk chalk on our driveway and draw pictures.  He also loves to get his umbrella stroller from the garage and push it up and down the sidewalk.  Justin bought him a blowup pool that goes in the backyard and he loves to play in that too.  Still loves golf cart rides, going to the playground, playing at the pool, going to the zoo, etc.  We had a first for him recently.  We took him to Oak Mountain State Park to the beach and he played with Justin in the water while mommy watched from the beach.  He loved it!  He really loves anything dealing with water.  Before summer kicked off, he was going to storytime at the library once a week, but they’re done for summer so it will be a couple of months before we go to that again.
IMG_5623IMG_5522 IMG_5567 
He loves going to exercise class with mommy too.  Mommy and Me Time Fitness comes to our church on Monday nights and me and Carter along with his Nana, his aunt Jen Jen and his twin cousins Celia and Cynthia all do an exercise class together in the gym.  He loves those classes.  He still loves looking at pictures and videos on our phones and iPad and he loves to facetime people on the iPhone.  When Justin’s out of town he’ll say “face daddy!” and that’s what he  means.  As far as television goes, he still rarely watches it unless he strapped in the highchair eating or in the carseat while driving.  TV shows he prefers are somewhat the same as they have been:  Elmo’s World, Sesame Street, Mickey Mouse, Little Einsteins.  He’s recently started liking Super Why (which I love that he loves this show because it’s all about reading and the alphabet and he’s already mastered the alphabet!), Barney and a show that comes on Sprout called Zou which is about Zebras and the kid zebra’s name is Zou. 
IMG_4816  IMG_4817
Mother’s Day Out
So if you live in the south, you are familiar with the term “snowpacolypse”.  We had a BAD storm hit the south and it came out of nowhere.  Our meteorologists didn’t see it coming until it was too late.  We got several feet of snow within hours and roads were completely iced over.  Schools weren’t canceled until it was too late.  Parents couldn’t get to their children and in Alabama alone, some 11,000+ children spent the night in schools that night.  My sweet boy was one of them.  By the time I left to go pick him up, streets were so badly iced over that I couldn’t get out of my neighborhood.  Justin was out of town and my MIL couldn’t get out of her neighborhood either.  Luckily my FIL was at work and he was able to get to the church.  Carter and his twin cousins all spent the night at the church that night but luckily I have a sweet neighbor with 4WD that offered to go pick him up the next day so I got him back after about 36 hours.  It was rough, but he made it!  Mother’s Day Out ended in May and he was home with me for about a week and a half before he started in the Summer Fun program.  He goes 3 days a week from 9-1 for the entire month of June.  This is HEAVEN for mommy!  July and August are gonna be tough because I’ll have him 7 days a week and have to find new and interesting ways to keep him entertained.  But he loves school as always!!  In fact, when I come to pick him up he usually says “no see mommy!” because he doesn’t want to leave.  Quite the opposite from back when he was in the infant room and bawled anytime I left him.  The only downside I’ve noticed with summer school is that Carter FIGHTS taking a nap after school.  This didn’t happen until he started school so I feel pretty strongly that it’s somehow correlated.  The only way we can get him to take a nap is to make sure we rock him to the point of sleepiness before putting him in the bed.  Otherwise, he’ll stay awake in his room the entire time.  This makes the naptime routine a tad longer than usual, but he’s 2 1/2…he won’t be taking a nap much longer so I’m going to cherish him wanting me to rock him just a little longer :)
**The below pictures are from the “snowpacolypse” at the end of January**IMG_4585IMG_4596
On the left is a picture my FIL took when he spent the night at our church with all the kids.  They slept on those little cots in their clothes they wore to school that day.  Poor things.  Luckily Carter slept almost as good as he does when he’s at home.  On the right is a picture I took of when my neighbor took me to go get Carter the next day.  I brought Henry for him because I knew it would make him happy.  It made him so happy that he fell asleep on the ride home sucking his thumb holding Henry!  You should have seen that reunion.  When I ran into the church and he saw me and started running for me too.  I was just crying like a baby!!!
No clue in this department.  He stands on our scale every now and again and last time I check he was close to 31 pounds.  Height wise-I would say he’s close to 3 feet now.
I don’t even think this can be a section anymore.  He’s learning from absolutely everything.  His vocabulary is insane and he learns new words and phrases every day.  He makes full sentences now and can hold a conversation with us pretty well.  The only thing not quite right is that he still talks about himself in the third person saying “carter” or “car car” instead of “me” or “I”.  The few times he does use those words, he’s not really using them correctly.  This is not unusual for this age at all though.  They say that the more he listens to us talk, the quicker he’ll pick up on the correct way to use pronouns.  We’ve already started noticing him picking up on the proper time to say “I” in the last few weeks.  Funny things he has said recently include:
Justin: “Carter are you ready to get out of the tub now?”
Carter:  “Not yet daddy.  Not quite.”  (Not quite???  Where did he learn that?!?!)
While looking at a centipede that was crawling on our wall in the house:
Carter: “Look mommy!!!  That’s amazing!!!”
After finishing breakfast, but not drinking all of his milk and eating all his oranges:
Carter:  “Carter all done mommy.  Put milk and oranges in refrigerator to save for later”.
I swear y’all, he listens to EVERY SINGLE WORD we say and the context in which we use certain phrases.  He doesn’t always repeat them right away, but he remembers them and will use them a week later.  He’s so stinking smart!
Other Abilities/Random Things to Note

  • Still cleans up after himself when asked to about 85% of the time (sometimes he’ll even do it without being asked to) but other times we have to ask him a few times before he’ll actually do it.
  • Stopped sucking his thumb completely on his own at 28 months.
  • We started him on a daily vitamin this month.  He eats one Flintstone gummy vitamin a day.
  • HUGE animal lover.  He’s obsessed with going outside to look at bugs too (See below picture of him talking to ants in our driveway)
  • Still quite shy around people he doesn’t know and is even shy around people he does know for a couple of minutes until he warms up to them.
  • Very good at understanding that he has to hold someone’s hand when walking on “black pavement” like a street or parking lot.  He also knows not to go into the black pavement at our house.  He’ll run as far as he can down the driveway and just stand at the edge of the white concrete on the driveway and stare at the black pavement until one of us comes to get him.
  • Still has a huge love of Henry.  He loves all his animals, but obviously Henry is the preferred one.  In the past 6 months, we’ve even increased our number of “Henry’s”.  I think we’re up to about 6 or 8 now.
  • He’s still fairly obedient.  We are in the middle of the two’s and he is starting to push me and Justin on instructions, but we usually hold strong with the “obey mommy and daddy or we go to timeout”.   Obedience is about 80% of the time I would guess, which I personally think is pretty good for a two year old.  We’ve also been able to narrow down the times the he disobeys.  For example, he NEVER obeys us when we tell him it’s time to come inside.  He loves playing outside and always says “no” when we tell him to come inside.  I think this just comes with the territory of having a 2 year old boy-they want to be outside 24/7 and the fact that his mommy is 5 months pregnant and doesn’t want to sit in 90 degree weather doesn’t really phase him.
  • Speaking of timeouts, he’s really good now about saying he’s sorry and saying why he was put in timeout.  He knows this is a requirement before we come out of timeout.  There’s been a few times where he was just so mad that he wouldn’t say sorry, in which case I let him sit there even longer.  He’s only been in timeout for a max of 4 minutes or so before he’ll finally give in.
  • He gets into his carseat all by himself.  This helps mommy greatly since she’s only getting fatter each day and it’s hard for me to bend over and pick him up.  Sometimes he doesn’t get immediately into the carseat though.  Sometimes he’ll “take a lap” around my car before sitting down which is kinda frustrating, but again, he’s 2.   He can’t be perfect all the time.
  • We’ve mastered ABC’s.  He frequently sings them to himself before going to bed every night.   If you ask him his favorite song, he’ll say “ABCs”.
  • Speaking of singing, he’s doing A TON of singing.  He prefers Jesus Loves Me, He’s Got the Whole World In His Hands, ABC’s, Itsy Bitsy Spider, Row Row Row Your Boat, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and the Zacchaeus song.  Those are the ones he usually wants to sing every night before bedtime.
  • He’s also mastered the following shapes: Circle, Square, Rectangle, Octagon, Diamond, Heart, Triangle, and Star.
  • He has literally memorized certain DVDs that he watches in the car, namely the Cookie Monster Letters DVD.  We’ll be driving and he’ll be quoting the entire DVD in the backseat.  It’s pretty funny to listen to. 
  • He can count to 10 every single time he tries, though sometimes I’ve caught him counting as high as 20, but other times he’ll get numbers between 13-18 mixed up.  He has a numbers and an alphabet puzzle and he has completely mastered both. 
  • He loves riding his bike, but he still won’t put his feet on the pedals and ride it that way.  He’s just putting his feet on the ground and riding it that way.
  • He is extremely affectionate.  I didn’t see this coming with him.  I thought he’d be the very social and playful but didn’t want to cuddle type of kid, but around 18 months I started noticing how much he loved affection.  Giving kisses and hugs.  Cuddling before bedtime.  Loving on his animals.  The other day we were in the car and he said “Carter gonna love baby Garrett sooooooooooo much”.  I about died.  Another day after naptime, we were walking out of his room to go downstairs to facetime Nana and Papa and he ran back to the crib and got Henry out, gave him a kiss and said to him “Carter is going to call Nana and Papa.  You go night night.  I love you Henry” and then gave him a hug and put him back in the crib.  He does stuff like this all the time.   His teachers at school always talk about his “sweet personality”.  Don’t get me wrong, he ain’t like that 100% of the time.  But for the most part, he’s pretty affectionate as long as he isn’t being told “no” or just in an overall bad mood.  I think we have the perfect balance of affection/playfulness.
An example of his affection-he LOVES to hold hands with his twin cousins.
  • I’ve asked him what his favorite things are and here’s what he says-favorite color-blue, favorite number-zero, favorite letter-H (though sometimes he’ll say ‘X’),  favorite food-this is a tossup because sometimes he’ll say chicken quesadilla and other times he’ll say macaroni and cheese, favorite stuffed animal-Henry.