As parents we pass on many a nugget of wisdom to our children. Things like talking, eating, playing. Sometimes it’s not even things they need right now. But the earlier the better, right?
One such skill I seem to be passing onto Little Z right now is the art of driving. Or rather, how to be a backseat passenger.
Little Z is very used to the car, and long journeys and as my childcare (aka my parents!) live 40 minutes away, it’s a journey he’s become well accustomed to.
Lucky for me he loves it and will sing along to the radio and enjoy pointing out things like “doggy” or “twee!” and other such things and means he’s well entertained throughout.
Recently though I’ve noticed he’s turning into a bit of a backseat passenger.
Whereas once he would fully trust my driving skills and judgement, he has now started telling me what I should and shouldn’t be doing. We have spent many a few minutes debating whether I should drive through a red light. To date I have been fairly insistent that the car will remain stationary and can only go when the light turns green. Little Z disagrees and insists “let’s go!!”. I’ve now had to resort to saying “ok then lets go” (whilst remaining stationary) and hope he falls for it. He doesn’t.
He’s also started commenting on other drives cutting in. Ok, this one is my fault. I may have, just once (or twice), exclaimed “Oh man! It’s a 50 zone, not 20….speed up!!” to the car in front. Little Z instantly tried to copy it all, was only half successful, and will now randomly shout “Oh man!” whenever we’re in the car.
He has decided my sat nav, and my knowledge of the roads, aren’t that reliable. So, instead, he will now point out “Mummy it’s this way!”, to some interesting looking road that’s not on our journey. The easiest is to just say we will go down that road in a minute. He’s not sussed yet.
Control of the radio is now shifting. Whilst I still hold power of censorship, Little Z is becoming more in charge of what we listen to.
He now knows I hold the power to rolling the windows up and down. I spend 10 minutes every single day opening and closing these whilst he wants to hug and kiss my mum, dad and brother. Through the open window.
Does this mean I am officially a chauffeur?
We’ve had ourselves a bit of a snowy adventure this week…what with all the snow and being trapped indoors.
Little Z was completely fascinated at first and was completely persistent on “go outside, go outside, go outside, go outside….etc”.
He wasn’t quite sure what to do at first and stood very still in the snow for a while and then eventually got stuck in wanting me to make snowballs for him that he then threw at me. Which is always nice. He spent a bit of time helping me make a snowman but then declared “it’s collllld!!!” and then retreated back into the warmth and watched me through the window slaving away finishing the snowman off.
It took me the best part of the day to finish the not at all scary looking snowman off. We still haven’t named him!
(The theme in the Gallery this week is Adventure. Check out the other entries by clicking the icon below).
We could see it coming as he approached his second birthday. It started with full swooning tantrums on the floor, followed by cries of frustration when we said no. Then it came. Full on, and very loud…the terrible twos.
Little Z has entered the world of the terrible twos a bit earlier than I would have liked. Actually, I’m pretty sure this is one of those lies people tell you before you have kids and don’t have a clue about anything children related. I’m pretty sure the terrible twos start when they’re about 16 months or even sooner. At first you just don’t realise because you’re not looking for it. Then it slowly dawns on you. You’re in the midst of what will become the terrible twos!
I thought we were already in full flowing terrible twos and we almost had it under control. We walk away (most of the time) when he has a tantrum, both keep straight faces when trying to tell him off (most of the time) and try not to throw around the words “that’s naughty” too much.
We’ve seen a change over the last couple of weeks though. It’s like Little Z has acquired a fresh batch of feistiness. We now have ourselves a little bossy boots.
And what worked last week isn’t working this week. Uh oh.
This week a telling off will result in him chuckling back at us, or not looking at you directly in the eye, but flashing a knowing smirk at us. And saying “no” actually eggs him on to repeat it!
Our bossy boots has also turned into a shouty little man. Like a cranky lord of the manor that has no patience with his servants. No time can be wasted and everything must be done instantly.
“MILK!!!!” Is demanded loudly first thing in the morning and one must produce it within seconds. Same with “Biscuit!!” but to a lesser extent. Failure to conjure “MILK!!!!” up instantly can result in a minor meltdown. It seems the art of impatience is being honed. Either that or he thinks he is now a cranky teenager crying out at the unfairness of the world. Other demands can include and are not limited to) “Be happy soooon!!” (Get Well Soon on CBeebies), strawberries, going for a walk and giving anything he declares is “mine”. And one must comply instantly.
The little bossy boots has plenty of charm though which can be switched on instantly. “Share share” is a new favourite where all food will be shared and even placed into your mouth for you (whether you want it or not). There are hugs aplenty and he will randomly drop whatever he is doing and come and ask for one. Occasionally this means you have to put down whatever you were doing but this one i don’t mind. And my personal favourite is where he declares “it’s my mummy!!” to the other half. Of course this last one can have its slight downside when it’s only my hip he wants to glue himself to no matter what I may be doing.
So this week you will hear little bossy boots exclaim “Oh Doodness Me!” (Oh Goodness me!) as he parrots back our reaction at us whilst the OH and I hurriedly revise our parenting strategy from a huddled corner of the living room.
This is the peak of the terrible twos, yes?
2012 has been a very interesting and frustrating one all at once I think! I’d probably like to remember it as the Year of the Toddler! The year Little Z turned from a fast crawling rug rat into a fast running toddler. This year actually feels more memorable than his first year. Partly probably because its more recent but more so because this year contains some significant milestones like his first words, me going back to work, and him turning into a little boy.
I was dreading 2012. It would be the year I went back to work on a part time basis trying to juggle both work life and mummy life. Now I look back into my sieve like memory I have to admit I found it very hard trying to regain a sense of balance and belonging. Adjusting to new priorities where it wasn’t all about me. I think I was pretty naive to be honest. I expected to pick up where I had left off because time would freeze, for me. I adjusted, thankfully, with a little help from my work friends telling me to “shut that laptop!!” as I worked to catch up in the evenings and I became very grateful I am able to work part time. It may not last forever but its something that’s helped us no end.
One of my highlights of January was getting my new work car. Brand spanking new and a very enjoyable little ride. Little Z didn’t seem to think the same and let me know his views when he decided to throw up ( a lot!) in my 2 week old motor. I can’t remember the last time my OH laughed so much.
One thing I’ll always hate about going back to work is the Bloody Early Starts! I think we’ve honed the routine of getting out of the house on time now, but back in February we were still pretty much falling over each others feet. Mind you, we do still have the odd day like this.
Little Z was now running by this stage and had apparently forgotten how to calmly walk anywhere. Even now its as if he is trying to escape. Constantly!! He had friendevous and started going through separation anxiety. I think it was at this stage I made a mental note to enrol him into karate classes Being a mad mother I was afraid the separation anxiety meant he was afraid of the world and all within it. And if that WAS the case then how would he defend himself in the play ground when he was 5? Cue worry…and oh nooooooooo! Obviously I don’t think that now (Ok, sometimes). Unfortunately, March was the month he got quite a bad bug. Enough for me to have a moan about it and go slightly delirious about the whole thing comparing it to the Olympics. I still remember it well. Viral Bastard!
April was a big month in our family as one of my cousins got married. I was going solo for a few days as the OH wasn’t coming and I was worried about How to go to a wedding with a one year old. It was mayhem. It was mental. There was screaming, and car accidents. It was a lot of fun! I swear I will NEVER go to another wedding without the husband though.
We spent a lot of May running in the Sunshine in the park that is literally opposite my house that we hadn’t ventured to previously. Its now one of our favourite places to go as soon as Little Z wants to “go for a walk”. I also spent a lot of time trying to teach Z Who’s the Mummy. It didn’t go too well. There was also more weddings, this time with Michael Jackson. And it was the month we had to put our robot hoover into a protection scheme and I found out I was a finalist in the MAD Awards for best new blog, hurrah!! It was a busy month!
June was the month I became mum to a 1 and a Half Year Old. It was also Britmums live, and the first time I met so many other bloggers, some of whom I’d been talking to for over a year. It was manic and overwhelming at times but so good to finally meet people in real life. Which reminds me, I need to book my ticket for next year!!
Little Z turning 18 months was a massive milestone in my head because, to me, that’s when he suddenly turned into a toddler. I’m pretty sure he “technically” reached that phase way before then but its when I properly noticed he wasn’t really a baby any more. So I wrote Things I’ve Learned About a One and Half Year Old.
Over the summer of 2012 Little Z started learning new words, some good, some bad, and some that sounded remarkably like PISS. I know its childish but this still makes me laugh. He also learnt to be defiant this month. Its when I discovered how clever toddlers can be.
I also started stressing about how fussy an eater he was becoming. He’s slightly better now but god can he frustrate me with his eating habits.
The day came when we finally ventured to London for the MADs finals. I didn’t win but I had a fantastic time and met so many people. And we realised taking a toddler to London was actually enjoyable (mostly!). I also eventually discovered the rules of being a toddler.
November was a month I was very much looking forward to because we were going on holiday!!! Our first abroad since Little Z had arrived. I was very excited about some proper sun but not to excited about letting a toddler loose on a plane. We did have a fantastic time and Little Z particularly enjoyed talking to the “feesh” on a daily basis.
And last but not least, December brought Little Z’s 2nd birthday. I was thankfully not dreading his birthday this year and I realised that watching him grow up over the last 2 years and reach his toddler milestones has made me just look forward to the next year. It has been bloody hard at times and that’s what a good cry and cake is for but it has been good too in equal measure.
And that was 2012. The year of the Toddler.
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