Nothing humbles you like parenthood. I am saying that 1st so that it can be clear that I am aware of how this update is a "Season" just like my last update was. I now know (after a few years of practice) to never get too comfortable or too prideful because kids change all the time!
So in my last update, I was so stressed with my wild boys bad behavior and adjustment issues to new school and sister. This update could not be more different! The atmosphere around our house lately is one of pure peace and joy! He is SO funny and cute with the things he is saying and doing lately! 3 really is the best age! He is minding us now ( On the 1st time, not the 30th) he hardly ever has to go time time out, and the fits are minimal.
What? You ask has brought out this calm and happy child? What on earth has changed him so? Spankings. There you have it. Judge if you must. I won't get on my soapbox about parenting beliefs etc. Everyone knows what is best for their own child, and for us this was a real game changer. I will say that this was SUPER hard for me and for Erik. We may have all cried!
I also think he is really happy knowing what his clear boundaries are and what to expect from us. After this new regime, I noticed that he has not been taking "bluebear" everywhere with him, that signals to me that he is more secure.
I talked to tons of people about this issue because I was so torn and our children's pastor at church said several things that really resonated with me. One was "You must discern between Foolishness and childishness" as in Did he break the lamp while he was running around the house playing, or did he look you in the eye and then smash it with a baseball bat. HA
He also recommended 2 books " Bringing Up Boys" and " Dare to Discipline by James Dobson"
We also changed up time out. Now when he goes to time out, he stays for a while, like 10 minutes unless he goes and sits on his bed quietly ( which requires him to stop screaming first) and then I will come and let him out, BUT whatever he was doing before he went in there, like painting, is not happening until he earns back the privelage of painting by doing some kind of chore or task. I care very little about how well he does the chore, only that he sees it requires work to come back from the tantrum.
It took 2 days of non stop time out, a few spankings and lots of lectures before he realized that we were serious. It didn't matter if I was on the phone, had company or what, those were THE RULES. Once that was established he has been an absolute DOLL. But y'all? It was some WORK! I mean it was a fierce few days, but totally worth it now that a 3 year old is no longer running this house.
I know I have several friends with 3 year olds who are also making the adjustment of a new sibling, and this helped us so much with his acting out. He over all, seems to be doing better, and certainly things are much easier now that he is getting used to the idea that sister is here forever. He is playing by himself more, and not asking me to hold him 24-7 and he still loves her ( although I did catch him hiding pretzels behind her head once. Not sure what that meant).
So on to the FUN stuff!
What is he Watching ?
TOY STORY! Paw Patrol on Nick Jr., Bubble Guppies, Dora, The Lion King, Umi Zoomi and sometimes Octonauts.
We actually finally got him to watch a movie! I just put a few on his iPad and he found them on his own and started watching. Toy story is his FAVORITE! Thanks to my mom buying them for my nephew we have all 3 Toy Story Movies and lots of the toys. He also likes The Lion King a lot. Every few days we have a movie screening with a new Disney Movie and some popcorn and so far, no others are very eye catching for him.
What is he Playing With?
His Toy Story Characters, Trucks and Cars ( SO MUCH), Mr. Potato Head, His Plasma Car, Musical Instruments, WhichyWant, Candles, Deoderant, Soap Bottles. He is soooo into hoarding and collecting things. Drives me crazy picking up 85 toiletries scattered through out the house.
Sleep: This dude has finally dropped his afternoon nap ( cue the wah wah wahhhhhhh) I miss naptime! So instead he has 2 hours of " quiet time" in his room with a chose toy. 12:45-2:45. He wakes up about 6:20 on the dot every day and goes to bed at 8pm. He might fall asleep at 8:03 or at 9pm. We never know! He is still using and loving his TOT clock. Anyone who spends the night here knows all about that when they hear him screaming out early in the morning " The cwock turns yewwwow" ( the clock turns yellow) which means it is OK for him to get out of bed.
Sometimes he wakes up and instead of calling for us, he lays there talking in a robot voice " I.NEED.SNACKS. ..... I.NEED.SNACKS. ..... I.NEED.SNACKS" which made is laugh for days!
Right before our come to Jesus disciplinary action he had started crying about having to go to bed, but now he is back in the routine of just going and not whining about it.
Clothes : He has never had any opinion about his clothes at all, other than he would rather not wear any clothes EVER. ha But he is wearing mostly 4T sizes and shoe is 11.5
This is still such an emotional issue for me. He has come SO far and I am sooooo thankful. When I think about where we were this time last year on this journey, and how I felt, and how deep my worry was about his future I am overhwhelmed with joy that he is talking. The more he talks and expresses, the happier we are! If any of you watch RHWNJ and see Jacqueline and her issues with Nick, that is how I felt! I know all of that stuff she is doing with him on the show because we did a lot of the same stuff here.
Here is a video from last October when Fenn was not quite 27 months old.
We had to force him to either ask or sign for things instead of just pulling me to it. At that point he was not even pointing to things really. He also was making very LITTLE sound at all ( other than crying)... and now...?
He is a CHATTERBOX! Copying most of everything we say like yesterday when I didnt answer him fast enough he said "Mom mom! I talking to you" HA which is what I say to him when he is ignoring me asking him a question ha! He is also repeating lots of things he hears on Toy Story " Stop right there!" " What's going on in here?!" Yesterday he wanted some M&M's and I told him it was too close to dinner and he could have them after dinner if he ate all his food. 3 hours later, after he head eaten his dinner he asked for some M&Ms and I was about to say no, before he reminded me " I did it! I ate allllll my suppers" HA he has never really repeated things from memory or brought up previous conversations before so that was neat!
He is doing lots of what I call Doraspeak. As in he talks in phrases like Dora
" Where is the blue bear? Do you see it? There is he is ! We did it! We found him"
And Although he is telling me a lot about what he needs or wants, he rarely tells me how he feels about anything, or why he is feeling/acting a certain way. So if he has a tussle with a playmate, he never tells me why or what happened, he just cries or tries to push the kid ...
He loves to help us do anything! I give him as many chores as I can. Here he is helping me cook. He gets real bummed when I don't let him coat everything in salt. He also added a banana to our chicken casserole last week.
He started Pre-School! This has been a real big transition for him but I love his new school and his new teacher is so passionate about her job, and Jesus and is patient with my little bull dozer. His favorite thing at school is the playground and the kitchen set.
He likes to make little pallets all the time. He told me he was gonna sleep on the dining room floor that night. Not sure why ! or why he loves spray paint! yikes!
and... as soon as I had trained him to stop tattooing his body with paint and markers, I leave him with his daddy who lets him do just that! With an extra canvas!
He request to take toys to bed with him every night. It always tickles me because it is not like hot wheels are extra cuddley you know... It also gives me a laugh that he packs up all his tiny pieces in that tool box right before falling asleep! This week his bed toys are Mr. Potatoe head parts and he will be real specific " Mom Mom I need 2 potato heads and 10 pieces and the muscles ( which means mustaches)" . He has also learned the art of negotiation , so if we say "nooooo, only 2 pieces" he will say, " No, 6, No 8, etc"
Anywhere his daddy goes, he is not far behind. He wants to do everything he does! he also knows and tells me now if HIS daddy is working or gone running etc.
I could go on and on about him because he is changing so much every day and blowing my mind with all his antics and funnies. I am LOVING this age and stage of life and I Can not wait to do so many upcoming things like Halloween & Christmas now that he gets it and can communicate to me his excitement or interest. He really enjoyed helping us decorate for Halloween yesterday and was not scared of any of the stuff including a 3 ft. spider! ha