Little Milestones | 3 Years Old

24131116_10210594156149602_8596418702847425750_nHello, friends! I can’t believe that it is already time to make another post like this one. It feels like just a few months ago, I was typing up all of his little details for Little Milestones | 2 Years Old, and talking about all of the wonderful things that make my little guy so unique and special, but it was actually nearly a year ago that it went up.

My little guy will be 3 years old this January, and I still can’t believe it. I’ve been totally immersed in the world of motherhood for nearly three years now, and it still blows my mind that I actually created, birthed, and am raising this incredible, tiny human. Seriously. What?!

As they say, ‘There’s no use fixing what ain’t broken!’, so I’ll just go with the old tried and true layout, and give you all the fun, little updates on Liam!

21200572_10210001431411854_6185481290188720456_oThe Basics:
Liam will turn 3 years old on January 23, 2018. Yes, this post is early, but I predict a lot of chaos and busy days in our near future, so I thought I would type it up now. As of today, he is 36.5 pounds, and 38 inches tall. Yes, you read that correctly, he is still a giant. He has been in the >99th percentile since he was an infant, and there he has stayed. Tall and skinny. People always mistake him for a much older kid, and when he’s around kids his own age at the park, he towers over them. He wears all 4T clothing, but because he is so skinny, he can only wear pants with an adjustable or elastic waist, which makes finding cute jeans for him a little difficult. He also wears a size 11 shoe, and a size 6 diaper (no, he still isn’t fully potty trained).

Physical Development:23130470_10210419764109910_523084360651172517_n
I’m not really sure what to report on in this department, since he’s pretty grown up now. He’s a completely normal, very active, little boy! He absolutely hates being cooped up indoors, and he loves to run, jump, climb, roll, etc. You name it! He has a tricycle that he loves to ride, and he is getting really great at it. We also bought him a big boy bike for Christmas, the same one that he makes us let him ride every time we go to Walmart, and I can’t wait for him to open it on Christmas morning, and ride it outside, weather permitting. So excited! He also loves to kick around a ball, and has quite an arm when it comes to throwing. Still not the best catcher, but he’s getting there!

23334026_10210457234526647_2127401246525586559_oEmotional & Social Development:
If you’ve been here for a while, you know that my son has always been shy. Whether it was other adults, like his grandparents, aunts, or strangers, or even bigger kids, he never wanted anything to do with them. No hugs, no kisses, no conversation. Around 2 years old, he started to come out of his shell a little, and would give hugs and kisses to his grandparents, with a little coaxing, and would play with his older cousin, but he was still quiet. Well, boy, has THAT changed!

He is still initially shy around strangers, but he warms up much quicker now, especially if it is a child. He runs up to other children at the park, or on the playground, and actively searches for someone to play with, even older kids. He loves his grandparents, and his aunts, and his cousin, and will talk about them when they aren’t around, and ask me where they are. Once he gets comfortable around you, he will talk your ear off about anything and everything under the sun. He also really loves dogs. And cats. And squirrels. And birds. And frogs. The list goes on!

21688280_10210072734914397_769482350804235782_oLearning & Vocabulary:
I’m ashamed to admit that I have been slacking a little bit in the teaching department lately. With no real preschool in our area, and no money to send him to one even if there were, I have chosen to keep him home until kindergarten, and teach him everything he needs to learn in preparation for that day, which is still a few years away. He’s still an incredibly intelligent, inquisitive little boy, and I answer every question he asks me. And he asks a lot of questions.

22366363_10210250608921136_6752017998646896871_nHe can identify the entire alphabet, both uppercase and lowercase letters, and can count up to 17. He loves counting things around him, but often counts objects twice. He knows his colors, and his shapes, and can name an obscene amount of animals by name. He speaks in complete sentences, like, “I love you very much, mama.” and “Are we going to grandma’s house?”, but sometimes he will miss a pronoun or a determiner here and there. He also really likes using adjectives, and describing things in great detail.

22140798_10210208065617580_3179085312112051094_nFoods & Eating:
Over the past year, Liam has gone from eating everything in sight, to only eat one of two foods for a week or two, back to eating like a linebacker. Currently, he’s right in the middle. A bit picky with his vegetables, but still loves his fruits. He also doesn’t like anything with a lot of sauce, or anything gooey or mushy (i.e. mashed potatoes). Here’s a list of the things that he eats fairly regularly, without a fuss:

– Pickles, especially baby dill pickles
– Green and yellow apples, whole or sliced
– Applesauce with cinnamon
– Black Olives
– Green beans
– Mandarin oranges
– Bananas
– Strawberries
– Any and every kind of pizza, including veggie!
– Popcorn chicken
– Breaded chicken nuggets
– Ham
– Rotini or penne pasta with butter and garlic
– Any kind of oatmeal, especially blueberry or strawberry
– Grilled ham and cheese/grilled cheese
– Peanut butter and jelly

His current favorite foods are baby dill pickles, because… well, he’s my son, and we are pickle people, and bananas. Once and awhile, I can get him to eat some peas, or corn, or carrots, but not without a fight. He also doesn’t really like meats that much. No fish, or chicken, or pork chops, etc. Not sure why. Also, like every other kid on the planet, he loves candy, chocolate, sweets, etc., but we try to limit them to holidays (Halloween, Easter, etc.), or as a special treat. No judgement here, don’t worry, it’s just that both his dad and I have really soft, sensitive teeth, and a looong history with cavities, and we are trying to prevent that for him!

20245594_10209720513109072_4637555785611636180_nPotty Training:
We started casually potty training right before Liam’s 2nd birthday, just to get him used to his potty, and teach him that that’s where people go… and it has been pretty up and down ever since. This summer, we made a big potty chart, complete with stickers, and put it up on the wall. Liam was doing really well for a few months. He would wake up dry, and would successfully use the potty anywhere from 1-4 times a day. He even pooped in the potty a couple times. Things were going smoothly, and he loved putting his stickers on the board…

Then, he suddenly decided that he no longer wanted anything to do with it. He was back to waking up with a full diaper, not wanting to ever sit on the potty, and not telling me when he had to go. So, he’s still in diapers. Throughout the day, like when he wakes up in the morning, before and after naptime, and before bed, I will try to get him to sit on the potty, but half the time he fights me. It’s frustrating. I’ll keep trying, especially since he’s wearing a size 6 diaper, and there isn’t a size bigger than that, but it looks like we’re doing this when he’s ready, not when I want it to happen.

21273314_10210008852597379_4857459591956342513_oNaps and Bedtime Routine:
I’ve said it before, and I will say it again. My kid is an AMAZING sleeper. He has been sleeping through the night since he was around 6 months old, and has always been really good about going to bed on time. Our bedtime and nap routines haven’t changed much in the last year. He naps for 2-3 hours after lunch almost every day, he takes 3 baths a week, about an hour before bedtime, and we always ready 1-2 short stories before he goes to sleep, both for his nap and for bedtime. His absolute favorite story, which we read every other night, is Winnie the Pooh: A Game of Pooh Sticks. I have it memorized. He loves all of his Winnie the Pooh and Mickey Mouse books, and those are what we tend to read the most. Bedtime is still between 7 and 7:30, unless we get stuck out late for some reason, and he generally falls asleep pretty quickly, unless the neighbors are being noisy, or he is sick or something. He wakes up anywhere between 7:30 and 9 in the morning. Crazy, right? It’s so wonderful.

He still sleeps in his crib, and still has zero interest in sleeping in his big boy bed, which has been sitting in his room, completely set up, since last Christmas. He has yet to try and get out of his crib though, so I guess I don’t see any rush to try and get him to sleep in his bed.

24294154_10210591159714693_6828561402124919957_n
23561441_10210483330059019_216604169925580667_nPlaytime and Activities:

Still as active and playful as ever! Some of Liam’s favorite things to do include walking to our local park and playground, riding his trike around the house (it’s been too cold to go outside lately), playing with his many Hot Wheels cars on his car playmat, building with his blocks, coloring and drawing, and watching TV. I’ll just get this out of the way right now, and say that, yes, I do let my son watch TV, and I don’t particularly care if you agree with it or not.

20245601_10209671673928123_4937049363402040020_nLiam loves shows like Curious George, LeapFrog, and Octonauts, and has learned a lot from them. These TV shows, geared toward teaching, get him talking about subjects and things that don’t normally come up in everyday conversation, and I love that! He also has a big bin filled with animals and dinosaurs, and he loves dumping them out and playing with them as well. He loves animals!

I suppose that’s it! Every day, I find my heart being filled with more and more love for my little boy, and even on the days where he acts like he is 2 years old, going on 15 years old, he is the best. Even on his worst days, he is the best, and I love him to pieces.

Thanks for reading, friends!

Jan (and Liam)

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Sorry for the Silence

Hello, friends. It’s been quite some time since I’ve had the chance to sit down and write a post (just over two months), and a lot has happened. Most of the things that have happened aren’t really worth mentioning, but there are a few things that I’d like to share with you.

15995039_10208147301339761_8093609280292525493_oFirstly, and most important in my eyes, yesterday was my son’s second birthday. He’s two. I have a two year old. Trying to wrap my head around the fact that I have been a mother for two years is just… insane. I was babysitting all day, so we really couldn’t celebrate, and my entire household has been battling the cold from hell for a few weeks, so we were all more than happy to lay low. We had a cookie cake, took some pictures, and enjoyed some family time at the end of the day. Liam had an actual party a little over a week ago, when we went up to visit Kyle’s grandmother, and the whole rest of his family, for the big, annual family Christmas party. We bought Liam a really nice, super delicious cake, and he got to open a massive pile of Christmas AND birthday presents. He’s gotten so many amazing gifts this season, I might have to start doing some more toy reviews. There’s plenty to report on!

Luckily, we got all of our holiday and birthday shopping done early this year, because as you all know, whenever things are going too well for us, something goes wrong. Now, I went off on Facebook and Twitter recently, ranting about the medical lab where Kyle had his blood tests done last year when he was starting his new job. He had to be screened for diabetes, which we then discovered he had. Well, what I may not have mentioned, is that the clinic ordered a number of other tests, which we did not ask for, and in the end, we were charged roughly $1,000 from the lab, and nearly $500 from the clinic. For BLOOD TESTS. Gotta love America…

So, since Kyle is unable to afford insurance through his employer (oh, he no longer works two jobs, just the one driving now), and doesn’t qualify for state aid, it all had to come out of pocket. His mom agreed to help us with the clinic bill, since she was supposed to put Kyle back on her insurance and forgot about it, but the rest was on us. We were making the minimum payments for a while, but since Kyle’s job pays pretty well, he decided to pay half of it all at once on the site. Well, he screwed up and accidentally hit “Pay In Full”, and over $800 was taken from our bank account… and we didn’t have that much in there.

We got slammed with an overdraft, and a fee to go with it. Of course, he didn’t tell me this was his mistake until after I went off online, blaming the company, but when we reached out to see if we could maybe get half of the money back, they wouldn’t work with us. Not even a little. Luckily, I got paid enough the next day to pull our account back from the negatives, but we’ve been riding on $32 in the bank for over a week. Thank goodness for Christmas cash and gas card gifts. Tomorrow, Kyle gets paid, and then I get a few dollars on Friday from babysitting, and we will be all set again. But it sure threw us for a loop.

And speaking of babysitting… that’s all over.

It’s been rough. I had to put my Twitter as protected, because I found out that someone has been stalking my tweets, taking screenshots, and sending them to people who don’t follow me there, which has caused me some drama. Ridiculous, high school drama. I have a good feeling I know who it might be… though I’d like to think it isn’t one of my friends who follows me. I don’t trust anyone anymore.

I feel empty. More alone than ever. I feel like there’s been too much to deal with, but I haven’t been letting myself deal with any of it, because there was always something that needed to be done. Something more important than me, and my feelings. I didn’t let myself feel, or deal, or vent. Blah.

I also recently became an aunt again, to a little girl whose name I don’t even know, and who I’ll probably never meet, we lost my grandmother’s husband, Richard, to cancer right before Christmas, and I gained 45 pounds in 2016.

Oh, and Trump. That happened. So we’re all stuck in this sinking boat of misery.

Thanks for reading, friends. I should have more time to do writing prompts, reviews, etc… I missed writing. Talk soon.

Jan