Aiden is growing in SO many ways lately...language, development, abilities, personality. Attitude. It's a fun age, busy, and challenging at times.
- Leo's horse. We had a playdate at our friend Leo's house, and Leo has this rocking horse. If you press the horse's ear, he plays music. Aiden could not get enough of the music!! He wasn't sure about the actual rocking on the horse, but the music was fun enough for him. (The rest of us were ready to stop hearing the music, I do believe.) Not only did he love the horse while at Leo's, but when we got home, he kept signing horse and asking about it. After nap, he kept asking about the horse. The next day when he woke up, still asking. This went on for about a week. He did NOT forget about that horse. It clearly made an impression on Aiden!
- His bicycle! Aiden wants to ride on this thing all the time. He doesn't do much on it...he can go forward a little bit, he can more easily go backward. He mostly just gets on and off of it, though.
- Hats and sunglasses. He's been ok with hats for a while, though sometimes we had to put the hat on, distract him so he wouldn't pull it off, and it would remain on for a while. But suddenly he always wants to wear hats! And where he never would allow sunglasses on his face, he now loves them! He'll put both on when we go outside, but if we're running errands, he'll often want them left on even while we go into a store. I'll ask him a few times if he wants them off, and he'll shake his head no. Of course, everyone that sees him thinks it's so funny and cute. It is.
- Dumping anything with liquid in it once he's done and before you can take it from him. If he's done with his cereal and there is still some milk in the bowl... If he's done with his drink in an open cup... If he's got a little bit of soup left and doesn't want anymore... He dumps it on his tray before you can grab it from him. To give him credit, he will often pick up the bowl/cup and hand it to one of us when he's done. But if you don't get it QUICKLY, he will then dump it. And sometimes now, he doesn't even do that first. He just dumps it. Once that happens, though, he's definitely done...because WE say so. I'm not sure how that will work as a deterrent, though, because he does it WHEN he is done...
- Cars. Just about any kind. He especially likes his two larger trucks that he got for Christmas from his aunt Rachel and family. And matchbox cars. Those are big winners! (Grandparents...please do not take this as a hint to buy him any! We saved all of Camden's - and he has a LOT - so Aiden gets a few here and there and thinks they are so awesome. Trust me, we have plenty. Way more than enough. And he does not care that they are hand-me-downs. Even if he understood that, he wouldn't care because he wants anything that is Camden's!)
- New favorite song: Hush Little Baby. You know, the one with the mockingbird... He mostly wants it when he's getting ready for bed or a nap or nursing. He'll sign "bird" and "sing" to let me know he wants me to sing it. Recently, he's been using the potty some, and I was doing some silly songs to celebrate when he actually did something. He loved it. I would dance around and act really goofy. Then suddenly, instead of wanting that...he would request Hush Little Baby. When he pottied!! I would ask if he was sure...and yep! To celebrate using the potty he didn't want an exciting, fun song. He wanted a lullaby.
- His 4am nursing session... Ok, so we took this away for a while. Two months really. I think that's long enough to see if something is going to work. And it didn't. Aiden would still wake at 4 or so...and then stay awake! Whereas before, he and I would both be awake a lot from that point on, this way...the two of us, plus daddy, were up from then on with basically no more sleep. It was not working. Sleep deprived and not knowing what else to do just yet, we have recently went back to nursing him. We all at least get a bit more sleep. And we're trying to figure out what else to do at this point b/c we all need more than what we're getting. But Aiden is happy that he's getting his milk at this time again. Of course.
- Animals. Aiden really loves things that are about animals. His favorite Signing Time videos are the ones about the farm and the zoo. The Zoo Train is his most favorite, and he'll ask for it by signing "animals" and "train." What is most funny is this game he made up, all by himself. He comes up to us and does the gorilla sign, grunting while he does it (the sign is simply taking your fists and alternating thumping your chest with the fists...just like you would do if you were acting out a gorilla). After we say "gorilla!" he does another animal sign and so on. He usually does (in this order) gorilla, crocodile, kangaroo, hippopotamus, tiger (and the rest in any order) monkey, penguin, bat, rhinoceros, lion, and then some of the others if we mention them. He thinks it's so great to do the signs and have us "guess" the animal.
- Fresh pineapple. Loves, loves the stuff.
- Big Bird and Elmo. He has a couple books with them and knows them this way. (Yes, I'm still the mean mommy who really only lets him watch a couple Signing Time videos here and there...) He was watching tv when we were at my dentist the other day, since he was having to sit in the stroller for so long. Sesame Street happened to be on, and his face just lit up with so much excitement and surprise when he realized that Big Bird wasn't just in his book! It was a priceless look.
- Dirty diapers. Not that he doesn't like dirtying them...he doesn't like that if he does, he has to be changed.
- Throwing up. No fun. After his nasty virus, you know, the one where he threw up between 25-30 times in ONE DAY...he really doesn't like it.
- Stopping nursing sessions. He is going through some phase where he wants to nurse and nurse and nurse and just not stop. It's not that he nurses more often. He doesn't. He just doesn't want to stop during the times he typically nurses. I've asked other moms about this, especially after finding out that most toddlers usually are quick nursers b/c they're so busy playing, and apparently it's not all that unheard of. Hard to tell if he just wants the extra comfort after he's done actually drinking for milk or if he is teething and this helps or if he needs the extra milk due to all his developmental growth...or if he's just being a toddler and wanting what he wants. It's just so strange to me because as a baby, he was an extremely quick nurser. My let-down was so fast, he would get all the milk out in no time and be done. I noticed a few months ago, he might nurse for 20 minutes, which was long for him. Now...he could probably go for an hour if I let him!
- Going down the stairs. He's fine if you carry him, but he is terrified of going down them on his own. He won't budge and will turn and cling to you if you try to get him to even stand on a step at the top. If you ask him about walking down (or if you even hold him so that he is looking down instead of facing you), he will absolutely freak out.
- Going to sleep quietly. Not that he fights going to sleep, but lately he plays more and makes more noise, taking longer to go to sleep once he's in bed. We're not sure why exactly, but he just is taking a bit longer lately.
- Coming inside. This kid loves being outside and hates having to come in.
- Having the lid on his snack cup. The lid is made so that kids can reach through it to get the snacks out, but the snacks won't fall out and make a mess. (Someone made a fortune from that idea...) Aiden does not like having that thing on there anymore. We have been letting him have snacks in open containers when at home, so he learns not to spill, etc. He will sometimes be ok with the snack lid on when out and about, but lately he's less and less ok with it.
- Saying "no." He just started saying no, and he doesn't yet yell it at us or say it in a mean way. It's still cute. (I know...we'll get there.) He did take a while to say "no," but we really don't say it a lot to him (we try to use other ways of telling him what not to do or what TO do, etc), but he's been able to communicate it in other ways, as well. It is so cute, though. He sticks out and curls up his upper lip and says no in this little voice that comes out as if he has a Spanish accent.
- Going on the potty. He's done #2 quite a number of times and has peed a couple times. It's harder to know about peeing b/c he's on the big potty and I don't stay right next to him, so I might not hear if he does that. He's more likely to go if I am busy with something else and not sitting right there watching him, so we let him do his thing while we are nearby. He usually sits on the potty right after waking in the morning, before and after naptime, and before bedtime (and occasionally he'll ask at other times). Like I said before, we're not pushing potty training right now, just working on awareness and following his lead. If he says no, he doesn't want to sit, that's fine.
- Grandparents... Aiden is becoming more aware of the roles these folks play in his life, even though we don't see them often. After seeing Pappaw Gene (Daisy's stepdad) on the webcam one day, he would continue to make a gesture that Gene often makes toward him..it's where you pop your finger out of the side of your mouth, making a loud "pop" noise from pushing out the air in your cheek with your finger (if that makes sense...hard to describe). Aiden will do this ALL the time, also signing and saying "Pappaw!!" Pappaw was the first grandparent's name he said. He now also talks about "MaMaw" (Ryan's mom) after her visit at Easter and "Mammaw" (Daisy's mom). I'm sure the rest will follow very soon! (Visits definitely help, grandparents! After that, using the webcam does, too.) ;) He brings up grandparents fairly often, especially Pappaw, and does so out of the blue; it's not just after seeing them, talking to them, or hearing them mentioned.
- Talking more and more. Just as I suspected, once he started... ;)
- This isn't so much a development as something Aiden is interested in and is working on... Like I said before, he loves playing with cars. Well, he loves being outside and seeing real cars, too. Whenever we are out walking, he will point at EACH AND EVERY vehicle we pass. He'll either say "car" or "truck" or will ask if that is what it is (by adding a question mark). I name every vehicle (car, truck, van, SUV, etc), as well as the color of it. He can't get enough. I mean every single thing he sees, he points at for me to tell him what it is - or he will say what it is if he knows for sure. It can be exhausting sometimes because that is what our entire walk around the neighborhood ends up about, but he's learning new things, and it's fun to see him so excited about it. It's interesting when there is someone in the car he is pointing to, as well... Usually they just think it's cute and wave back.
- Aiden is definitely becoming more aware of what HE wants and how to let you know. He can be rather insistent, whether it's about something he wants to do or something he doesn't want to do. He's also starting to get more into wanting to have his way or doing things on his terms lately, letting you know what his preferences are. That personality is starting to really shine through!