If you have noticed that my tree below is looking a little sparse at the bottom, it is! And that is because I have the most fabulous helpers! Parker is now two-years-old and Charlotte is 10 months old (almost 11 months). I thought it would be fun to share some pictures of them in their Christmas PJ's and give an update on their milestones and achievements lately. I was going to write about them both, but after sharing my favorite updates on Parker it got so long! I'll post another update on Charlotte soon!
As you can see, getting a photo of both Parker and Charlotte is a bit of a challenge. And by a bit of a challenge, I definitely mean practically impossible. Although, I'm sure I could have thought of some great bribes to get Parker to look. And there are some times I get some super cute pictures. Regardless, I had a lot of fun getting a few action shots of the kiddos in their element. The Christmas tree is definitely exciting to them, and while they aren't pulling ornaments off 24/7, they definitely find some times that they become re-interested in that activity. It's fun to see their excitement over the tree. And this 'photoshoot' sitting in front of the tree was one of those moments that reminded them how fun it is to pull the ornaments off. But I look at these photos and think of how precious these moments are!
Parker (two years old / 27.5 months):
Parker is now two years old. He turned two at the end of August. Turning two was a big milestone for a lot of Parker's achievements. And I want to use my blog as an outlet to take a moment to remember some of these special moments! Parker had picked up on so many more words, other than Momma, daddy, and no, once he was closer to turning two. (Did it take a while for anyone else's toddler to say, "yes?") Leading up to the age of two, and over the spring and summer Parker was able to do a lot of things, but one of my favorites was when he could tell us what sounds the animals made. He was also able to identify them when he saw them as well. In the beginning of the summer, it made me chuckle when we walked to the pool we go to. There is a horse stable on the way. We were renting a home walking-distance to the pool, while our new house was being finished and we had already sold our last house. Whenever we walked past the horses, Parker would shriek and point with excitement and say, "Moo!" It always made me giggle. For some reason, "neigh" was just one of the sounds he didn't pick up on as easily! This was at 20-22 months.
Parker is now speaking full sentences! (Age two type full sentences). Once he turned two, it was like his vocabulary tripled and with each month came new words, knowledge and understanding. I remember wondering when he was 18 months if he would start talking more. He clearly understood everything I said to him and would complete different commands with full understanding for a long time, but most of his communication was very elaborate and detailed babbling. So to wrap up that thought, age two has been a big turning point for us in the realm of his vocabulary expanding. I hear this is more common for boys, but every toddler and baby is so different so I'm sure that's not always the case!
Some other fun highlights include that he is now familiar with singing his ABC's, he is counting to ten often, and can count to twenty with help, he knows all of his (basic) colors and shapes, he is identifying letters and numbers, he loves to give high fives, low fives, and fist bumps, and he often speaks about grandparents and wants to "call them." Another fun one, is that he is climbing out of his crib. It has become a common occurrence lately, but he is still very comfortable in his crib. And since I just bought his crib a few months ago when we moved into the house and since I have been advised by many trusty friends that it is best to keep them in the crib as long as you can.. I plan to. What we have going for us is working after all! I plan to put the toddler rail up between 2.5-3 years old, and although I think he could make the adjustment now, I also think the crib sides are more of a deterrent in many cases and that they also provide comfort for him. There is also much more of an effort required to climb out. While he does so very easily, we feel confident in keeping him in his crib for the time being and that there is no need to change what works for just yet. I will say that he has been sick the past few nights, and it is definitely strange that he has come into our room in the middle of the night! (Poor guy). We aren't used to our little ones 'roaming' at night. But he never usually does this and hasn't since he has gotten better. Whew!
Parker is also very very very into cars, firetrucks, police cars, garbage trucks, excavators, all big trucks, etc. He loves observing them and talking about them. He is not so keen on riding in them yet though :) We have had some opportunities to sit in firetrucks and it is much more fun for him to observe right now from the outside. Parker additionally loves playing with toys in that category. And it humors me because I really didn't teach him to like those things. He just honestly does! And I find it to be adorable. Additionally, every single time I take him out of his carseat when we get home, he asks me if he can, "drive car?" "Momma's car, drive car. White car. " If daddy's car is also in the garage he also points out, "Daddy's car. Drive car." Unfortunately, leaving the house with two children at this age, is a bit of a challenge in the category of how much time we have that they are actually happy and content and not needing to be put down for bed and/or a nap, so I don't always get to let him sit in the driver seat and pretend to drive. We have usually already exceeding nap time hours for one of the kiddos when we step out and that means someone is bound to have a meltdown if they aren't having one already. But it is definitely a very big highlight when he gets to. He is also obsessed with car keys. If you are holding them in your hand, or if you leave them in any place that he can see them at any point, he will always ask for them. It's pretty cute when he jumps up and down smiling saying, "KEYS!!" But then he usually will eventually find an outlet and try to insert the car key, or mail key, into that outlet (which, of course we are constantly working on not having him do and reminding him that that is not allowed. Luckily our outlets are already the baby proof kind..).
We are also to the point with Parker where we can push his bedtime a little bit or nap time hour a little bit, without an epic meltdown or even worse, having him wake up extra early the next day. (But not his sister yet!) If he falls asleep in the car now, which he 80% of the time will if we go anywhere between 11 am - 2 pm, then he will transfer into his crib and sleep a little bit too. But if we are arriving at our destination after that tiny snooze, there is not hope in a nap that day. And I don't skip naps, for the sole reason of the consequential behavior that comes closer to mid-afternoon - dinner time.
Parker has such a big personality, and it has been amazing to see him become the little person he is today. He has always been such a wonderful independent player. What I mean by this is that he has the sweetest imagination, which is good for his own entertainment and also so entertaining for us to observe. He is very kind and sweet and he is a very good big brother to Charlotte! There are some occasional moments where he does not want to share, but we all know this is typical in siblings behavior and that we can expect those type of moments for a long time. He does have some moments where he wants to play with whatever Charlotte has as well, but on the usual basis he is very kind and sweet. Parker was adorable with Charlotte since the day we brought her home from the hospital when he was 16.5 months old! He would always, and still does, give(s) her kisses and hugs. In fact, Parker usually wakes up in the morning after Charlotte does. Whenever Charlotte and I come in to get Parker in the morning, he always immediately asks me if he can hold baby. So I plop Charlotte in the crib with Parker and they have a grand old time for 10-15 minutes romping around together. It's very sweet and such a special start to our day. Additionally, whenever Charlotte wakes up from her naps and Parker and I go in to get her together, he also wants to play in her crib with her too. He sometimes confuses the words up and down and he lately has been saying, "down, down! In! Climb in with baby." It's very cute. Also, a few months ago, Parker was also in a big stage of asking about Daddy the first thing in the morning when I walked in to his room in the morning. He would ask, "Is daddy home? Daddy? Daddy? Daddy home?" It was pretty adorable. He still does this every so often, probably every other day, after asking to hold baby/"Char-leigh."
Some other favorites right now: Parker calls popsicles and lollipops "pop-pops." I don't know why, but I find it so very cute. And he doesn't even have them really very often at all, but he knows to call them that! Another one, is that we have taught him to call yogurt covered raisins "candy." So when he has been a good boy after dinner or at some other point, he sometimes gets to have a treat and that treat is often yogurt covered raisins. I'm not big on feeding him candy or other treats, although he has tried a few pieces. Additionally, when he was closer to turning two, he also started to go up to photographs in the house and point to them and say, "Daddy!" He would identify grandparents and us and tell us about how we were in the photos. It amazed me that, at such a young age, he could identify my dad from a side profile picture of him kissing my check on my wedding day. He is also very in to building forts right now! It's getting to be so fun! And Charlotte loves joining in.
I love taking the opportunity to share these moments so that I can treasure and remember them always. Thank you for reading about Parker! I'll share more about Charlottes soon, my little determined and dare-devil girl who has been walking more and more on her own everyday!!