So the boy is turning three. THREE?! How in the world did that happen?
I thought it was probably about time to write a little update before the last few days of his second year are up. It's hard to believe that the boy we now spend our days with was the same one that first made his wormy appearance three years ago. He now looks at photos of himself and will knowingly point out that that is baby Theo, and that he is a little boy now.
This year has been quite a tough one I'd say, tougher than any before. I know they all say beware of the terrible twos etc and I had in my head vision of major meltdowns and tantrums in public and uncontrollable screaming for hours and luckily we seemed to escape most of those episodes. He tries lots of different food, will eat most of what he's given in one sitting and tells us when he's had enough. He started to help with preparing and we do some cutting together, as well as mixing and stirring. When he has cereal in the morning he gets his own bowl, spoon and milk and we prepare it together, and then more recently when he's finished he knows that he has to put his plate or bowl in the kitchen. He's also a very good sleeper, going to bed around 7 - 7.30pm and then waking like clockwork most mornings at 7am. He still occasionally naps in the day but usually its only once or twice a week, and will more than likely be in the late afternoon. We're still hoping to get him a new bed, like one of these wooden high sleeper beds or a midsleeper bed with storage to make the most of the (limited) space in his room because he's such a confident sleeper! So on those aspects we're lucky.
He's also very confident with other people, adults mostly and older children. When settling him into preschool he had no problem at all about me leaving, he would give me a kiss and then leave me to go. We've never had any tears and he's more than happy to get comfort from other people. In fact he loves cuddles, he wants cuddles from anyone who will give him one! On a regular day I probably get asked at least 50 times for a cuddle. If he gets hurt, he won't really cry, all he'll say is "Mummy I hurt" and then holds out the place where it hurts for a kiss to make it feel better, and he's happy to accept comfort from other people around, unless he does really hurt himself and then it is only mummy that he wants. He seems to have a pretty high pain threshold, as if he falls over or bangs himself he doesn't really make much of a fuss, most of the time he'll just pick himself up and get back on with it, we don't have too many over dramatic crying scenes! We still sometimes have troubles with him lashing out, and have had a few cases of biting, but on the whole it does (fingers crossed) seem to be improving. I've spoken to the health visitor and had home visits on a few occasions and we have come up with new strategies to deal with some of the behaviour issues and they seem to be helping quite a lot, I'm just hoping that as he gets older he will be able to vent some of his frustrations in different ways and be able to use his words instead of his actions!
His speech has come on so well, and his words and sentences are clear to most people, and he can hold proper conversations, even though as of late his favourite answer to most questions is "umm, I don't know" or "um, because". One particular phrase he's started coming out with, and can never use correctly that is currently driving me a little up the wall starts with him saying "Mummy, mummy, mummy, mummy...?" "yes Theo?", "um, something else". Right, thanks. Other favourite phrases at the moment include "I'm sorry Mummy I didn't mean to" (and holding out his hands as if to prove his innocence) and "aaallllright" (said in a 'oh if I have' to tone), "um Mummy I need to talk to you/tell you sompthing" and "whaaaaaat?" when you tell him something. When sharing or when asked for something he will say "of course you can" and every time I pick him up from nursery I get the biggest cuddle, and an I love you, and I miss you. It really is very sweet! He is pretty polite and will use his please and thank you's mainly unprompted.
He's as active as ever, and in fact at the moment we are working on getting him to slow down as he seems to feel the need to run around everywhere, and generally not look where he is going. We are trying to show him that we need to walk inside, and walk carefully when next to roads etc. But he's just so fast! He still loves to run away and finds it a game when you try and retrieve him, and has disappeared on a few occasions causing me mild heart attacks...
Basically he is full of a lot of energy so activities where he can run or use up most of it is good for us. But puzzles are still the main source of concentration, and he keeps on astonishing us at his skill! He's currently on 5 year old 60+ pieces puzzles and can complete them with little guidance from us. He of course loves his trains, and is getting more and more involved with building the tracks too and having a clear idea of where he wants the pieces to go. We then have to act out stories, which mainly involve one train chasing another, crashing and then rescuing them. He loves stories and has a brilliant memory for what happens and has started to 'read' his books to us telling us the story and the characters. I love to see his little imagination working hard!
He's becoming more and more independent and will now do a variety of things himself such as putting on his shoes, taking off his coat (undoing buttons and zips), putting on toothpaste and brushing his teeth, going up to the bathroom and toilet by himself and pulling up his pants and trousers, taking his plate through to the kitchen, removing all his clothes for bath time and can spread butter/jam etc onto bread or crackers.
It really does make me shocked to see my once helpless baby do all of this for himself! In fact when looking back at photos I can't even really remember the way he was, it feels so alien that he was once this tiny being asleep on my chest! I know it's been said a thousand times, but it couldn't be a truer statement that the days are long but the years are short. But please Theo don't grow up too fast!