It has been a while since I’ve written an update on Leo’s shenanigans but here’s where he’s been at recently!
Leo’s vocabulary has exploded within the last few months, with him currently being able to string some words into primitive sentences to express ideas and wants. He says things like: “balloon, sky, pop, gone” (the balloon in the sky went pop and is now gone); “fan, dirty, memere, clean” (the fan was dirty but memere cleaned it); “Kenya, eat, bubble, pop” (describing how the dog Kenya would bite the bubbles we would blow). He also has a repertoire of quick phrases that he uses in correct context like: “bless you!”, “thank you”, “please”, “where did it go?”, “there it is!“, among other things. He just absorbs language like a sponge! He still has trouble with pronouncing ‘f’ sounds but it’s a matter of practice since he can say “fuck” very clearly. Thanks Daddy, for that one.
He can now say three syllable words like ‘lollipop’ and ‘banana’ and generally uses three word sentences to ask for things like “more cereal please” and the like. He is very polite, using his pleas and thank yous and even ‘pretty please’ when I deny him something. He is very articulate with his language and can describe the things that he sees and feels very clearly. Lately he has been telling me when he is sad saying “boy sad”, usually after I reprimand him for something or am impatient with him which always accounts for cuddles afterwards! To get out of his high chair he says :”boy stuck! Help!” which is hilarious as well.
Leo generally calls me mommy but will switch to calling me ‘Karine’ if I don’t respond promptly enough! He also recognizes his own name and will talk in the third person referring to himself as ‘boy Leo’. When parting company he’ll prompt people to say “bye Leo!” then wave them off.
He also loves music and has begun singing his favorite songs like ‘twinkle twinkle little star’, ‘the ants go marching’, ‘five little monkeys’ and many more. He can’t sing them completely yet but he know most of the words and will sing along with me when he asks me to sing to him. He even takes up a toy that is microphone shaped and sings into it while dancing! I have no clue where he got this since we don’t watch performers on t.v or anything.
I also recently noticed how he can count to ten on his own, usually done while climbing down the stairs and can recognize the symbols for those numbers. He likes to point out to me the number 6 especially for some reason. He also recognizes most letters and has assigned his own word for each letter. ‘L’ of course is lollipop. “B” is for boy or banana. Etc. Today he freaked me out actually when he looked down at my magazine and was spelling out the letters of words in sequence. I was like “who the hell taught you all this shit?!!!!!”. As I am a very lazy parent, and don’t drill or go out of my way to teach anything to him, I just babble continuously about the things I see in a day which is obviously working. *pats back*
Leo has a well-developed sense of empathy, often pointing out to me when other children or infants are in distress as well. He tells me when we see another baby crying: “baby crying sad” and often follows up with “boobie!”, which is his solution to everything of course! He loves to play with other children and will try all sorts of shenanigans to engage them. So far he prefers to destroy the things that other children make or run off with them but most older kids don’t mind and just let him get away with it. He also likes to share his toys and will ask anyone in the vicinity to play with him. A favorite activity right now is coloring, in which he’ll choose a color for you to draw with and dictate to you WHAT to draw as well. Balloons, bubbles, happy faces, and baa baa black sheep are the options he gives right now. He also asks me to draw my Grand-maman for some reason, or as he calls her: ‘Grand-maman chips’ (for the treats she always sneaks him!).
Whenever we’re out and about and come across girls or women of any kind, he HAS to go see them and say “hi girls!”. Then he will proceed to follow them around unless I drag him elsewhere. If I’m not vigilant he’ll try and hold their hands and give them stuff as gifts. Not even two yet and already a ladie’s man!
Leo has been nursing less frequently, usually reserving it for naptimes and at night or when he is feeling anxious or if he injures himself. I no longer let him play while nursing so the sessions are fairly short unless he passes out midway. It is still a very important staple to his diet, especially when teething as he forgoes most solids during this time. He eats plenty of nutritional food, preferring fruits and veggies over meat products. He has a very diverse palette, enjoying sampling new foods and makes his preferences obvious so we respect those needs as well. I avoid giving him junk foods for the most part because of how addictive they are and of little value they have so when he does get them, it is a treat he enjoys. A few of his favorite treats are wieners, chips, and kraft macaroni. His recent favorite foods are potatoes, eggs, pasta, and melons. His ideal meal is spaghetti in meat sauce with watermelon for desert! Very economical on our end!
He can use his utensils very efficiently although he still prefers to use his fingers for the most part. He switches between his right hand and his left to eat and has shown no interest yet in choosing either permanently. He may become ambidextrous, who knows. He usually drinks out of a sippy cup with a straw but can also drink out of an open cup with little mess. He likes to blow bubbles in them so I have to wary of that. He also has a fascination with water bottles and likes to use them as well. He can twist open the caps and put them back on now which is a useful skill to have. Also an annoying one if not practices at an ideal time, like in the car.
Our co-sleeping arrangement has evolved over time, with him sleeping best on his own bed after falling asleep initially beside me. Since he is still showing a need for night nursing, he remains in the same room as us, only on his own single mattress beside our bed. He rarely wakes in the night unless he pees which I then just change him and he falls right back asleep—sometimes while I am still changing his diaper! If he wakes up he usually calls for me and we snuggle until he falls asleep again. In the morning I’m usually greeted with a lazy smile with him prompting me to get up and change him and put his slippers on. He will remain sleeping within our room until he shows an interest in sleeping in his own based on his developmental needs. I feel strongly about gentle transitions and sleeping with company is comforting for him (and for us as well when you think about it, as we sleep alongside our spouses and not separately!) and our bedroom set up will morph to accommodate his changing needs.
Since our living arrangements have been chaotic at best, I have not pushed for potty training in respect for his need for some consistency in his life but he has shown interest in using his potty already. He tells me when he’s used his diapers and asks to be changed. He also comes into the washroom with me and describes how I am peeing in the toilet and even grabs a piece of toilet paper for me. When Adam was home for a bit, he would stand fascinated watching him urinate and get excited and say “Daddy pee! Daddy pee toilet!”. Once our home is settled I’ll be providing potties in most rooms for him to use when he likes. Since he’s outgrown his cloth diapers and the company I usually order from were out of the size I needed, I now use disposable pull-ups because he likes stepping into his diapers like underwear. I may invest in cloth training pants if they become available in the near future though.
My little Spartan is already wearing size 24 clothing, being over 33 inches tall, and weighing 28 lbs. He can run, make short jumps, climb on everything and can throw a mean ball. He likes to stare at himself in the mirror and makes faces as well as flex his muscles saying: “big muscles (like) daddy!”. His coordination skills are pretty good to and can peg me in the head with various objects if I am not paying attention.
He likes to pick out his own clothes already, telling me which outfit he prefers wearing that day. For a few weeks he refused to go anywhere without his tuque, which was cute but would make his head sweaty, so I shaved his head and he now likes to walk around telling people how he got a haircut.
All in all, my little man is growing exponentially and is kind of freaking me out since he’ll be turning two this summer. @____@ I know. He makes every day wondrous and a little crazy but always awesome.