Monday, June 26, 2017

Prioritizing

Since adding a new home and a second baby into the mix, I've had to do some adjusting with our lifestyle. I think we were able to maintain our pre child life pretty well with one child. We still traveled a decent amount, we brought our one baby with us to events with family and friends, and I still had some breaks through out the day when Nolan was sleeping. Once Eliza joined our family, I found the dynamic changed a lot. I remembered people telling me going from one child to two children was a big adjustment but I didn't really understand what they meant until I experienced it.

I've found learning to split my attention a bit challenging. After being used to giving your first your undivided attention, it's taken time for me to balance each of their needs and who to address first.

Learning to balance two nap schedules and differing sleep needs was new as well. There are also two feeding schedules to manage. Double car seats, double diapers, double snacks, etc. While life with children is very busy and eventful, I am starting to feel like we are through the toughest stage of having two close in age. I'm feeling a little less sleep deprived at times and having a little more energy. Nursing has been better lately, and I'm starting to feel more comfortable doing things with both of them myself. I think part of it is that Nolan is a little more self sufficient and able to do things himself easier.

I'm starting to see how neat I think it will be having two kids close in age. I love that they are at somewhat similar developmental stages. I'm also trying to remind myself to let go of more and just enjoy this time. I already see their baby stage ending, and right now my priority is my babies. In the mornings before Nolan wakes up, I try to get in some extra snuggles with Eliza. When Eliza is napping, I get in some one on one time with Nolan. This is likely my last year home with both of them, and I want to make the most of it. 

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Nolan 26 months

Today Nolan is two years old and two months. It still makes me a little bit sad that after 24 months we usually stop counting months and just say he's 2. The 22nd of the month still is a special day for me because that was the day we always took his monthly pictures and when we documented all those precious first milestones. Here we are two plus years later, and I still find myself in awe of the things he is learning, and the little boy he is becoming.

As our first child, we are going through this parenting journey with him for the first time. Each stage of his life is new to us and presents us with challenges and situations we've never faced before. Sometimes it feels like Nolan is teaching us just as much as we are teaching him. He has his toddler moments but overall is such an easy going, sweet boy.

Lately Nolan is very into imaginary play and his language has continued to grow. It feels like he went from very basic three to four word sentences to full conversations in just a few weeks. I am really enjoying being able to have conversations with him and when I ask him a question, he is starting to respond with a reasonable or correct answer. For example, I will ask him, "What are you building with your Mega Bloks? (big legos) and he will reply, "I'm making a big big popsicle." After watching Frozen for the first time the other day, he told me he was building Olaf the Snowman with his blocks too. He enjoys playing in his kitchen and cooking all sorts of things. Lately he has been making soup and all sorts of meals. He has a play kitchen grill too and likes to grill like Daddy does.

He loves books, playing at his water table, sliding in his ball pit, exploring outside, visiting the zoo, eating, and sleeping. He is a great predictable sleeper and has transitioned to his toddler bed really well. I'm glad to report that he typically goes into his big boy bed at naps and at bedtime without a problem and doesn't come out. He likes sleeping with his friends (Elmo, Cookie Monster, Curious George, and baby blue bear that was my bear as a child). He also has a special blue blanket that he likes us to tuck him in with before we leave his room. We still use a sound machine with him mainly to block out any crying his sister might do during the night.

He continues to want to do things for himself like feeding, getting his milk cup from the fridge, throwing things in the trash, cleaning up toys, trying to dress himself and taking his shoes off. He is definitely getting more independent with certain tasks but still needs help with other things. We've continued to encourage the potty but he doesn't seem interested and ready. From what friends and our pediatrician have told me, it's easier to potty train once they are really ready and self motivated instead of being pushed by the parent. Maybe if he was my old child I would be trying a little harder but right now we still have enough on our plates that potty training isn't really on my radar. That will just be another major transition for me when we are out in public so for now the diapers are working. I definitely look forward to not having two in diapers but it also doesn't really bother me changing both of them.

I usually spend Eliza's morning nap time working with him one on one doing some preschool type activities. Sometimes we color, play with play dough, read books, or do letter or number games. The teacher in me loves to be able to teach and interact with him. I need to start writing down some of the things he says. Jeremy and I both find ourselves laughing by the things he says and does. He's generally a pretty good big brother but he does get frustrated by his sister getting into his toys. I'm starting to see more moments of them playing nicely together and making each other giggle. Sometimes when she's crawling he will crawl after here and they both crack up. Two little smiles and laughs makes all the sleepless nights and handwork worth it. Can't wait to see what this next month brings.

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