This month brought so many changes. Most significantly, you are now a BIG BROTHER! You absolutely adore Nora and have been such a good helper. You love to wash her belly and her toes during bath time; you bring diapers and powder when I ask you to; you pick up her pacifier if she drops it; and you insist she lay in bed beside you and hold your hand during story time. I can’t wait to watch your relationship with her continue to grow!
Of course, with all big life changes, come challenges, as well. I’m not sure which challenges are directly related to Nora’s arrival and which are typical for all 2-year-olds. You continue to exercise your independence and express your opinions — from the clothes you want to wear to the food you want to eat — and have frequent meltdowns if you don’t get your way right away. But we’re working on it. I ask you to take a big deep breath, and we talk through it together. I’ve learned that time-outs don’t really work for you at this age, and so we’re exploring other options. Mostly, I’ve found that if we give you enough attention and provide enough opportunities to burn off your crazy toddler energy, we’re all a whole lot happier.
Despite these challenges, you are such an awesome kiddo! You have a ton of personality and make us laugh all the time. You are on a major superhero kick (thanks, in part, to The Incredibles movie). You call yourself “Super Sammy” and insist on wearing your “super shirt” (an Under Armor shirt from Uncle Stephen), “super pants” (gray sweatpants), and “super socks” (navy blue with lime green stripes) almost every single day. And you make up stories about your super adventures. Sometimes you ride a green motorcycle (which you pronounce “moh-ker-set”) and sometimes you fly your airplane to the beach. Sometimes you will just declare “dinosaur is coming!” and start running circles around the house. You have such an amazing imagination, and we absolutely love it and encourage it!
You have identified favorite characters (Lightning McQueen) and Matchbox cars (the “hot fire car”) and scenes from movies (the dragon scene from Shrek and the rocket scene from Toy Story). You have become quite adept with the iPad — favorite apps are Endless ABC, Monkey Preschool Fix-It, Train Puzzles, and Clicky Cars. You will sit beside Daddy and “work” on your mini laptop (thanks, Emma!). You still love stickers and insist we work on a few pages every night before bed. Current favorite books are: The Diggingest Dog, Seven Little Postmen, and Little Blue Truck. Some nights, you prefer to read to us. You clear your throat before beginning and lick your finger to turn the page. (We still have no idea where you learned that!) Then you “read” mostly gibberish with about every tenth word one that we understand.
Speaking of bed, whew! I believe we are finally back into a good sleep routine. But for a solid two weeks, you entertained/drove us crazy with your bedtime shenanigans. From pushing down your gate (and declaring “hooray, I did it!”) to covering yourself in diaper rash cream to undressing yourself to removing every item from your dresser … most nights you did not fall asleep until close to 11pm. We slowly eased back into a 9pm bedtime with afternoon naps that start by 1pm. Wow, what a difference sufficient sleep makes!
It’s amazing how much bigger and more mature you seem now that Nora is here. When I hold you, the bottoms of your feet hit just below my knees. You have outgrown nearly all of your 2T shirts and now wear size 8 shoes. You ask questions and answer ours and demand to be part of every conversation. But, at the end of the day, your hugs and kisses are as sweet and innocent as ever. We love you, big guy!