When Zoe was this age, I was about to give birth to Owen so I have to admit I was pretty nervous and tired all the time. It made me a little sad to realize that today because I worried about not having appreciated the preciousness of this age with her. I know I did soak it up as much as I could and that she and I have always had fun together but I do wish I'd been able to loosen up just a bit. Hard to do when you're about to have a baby I know, but I think it was also because she is our first born--everything the first time around had much higher stakes and we took everything so seriously. We stressed out over behavioral stuff that I now understand is just part of being 2 going on 3 years old. I knew it on some level at the time but let myself get too bogged down with wondering if I was doing everything "right".
Being with Owen right now is pure joy but don't get me wrong--he can drive me crazy. For instance, you may or may not be able to spot me once in a great while changing his diaper on the Jamba Juice bathroom floor yelling "Hold STILL Owen! Stop KICKING!! GRRRRR!!!" as he kicks even harder (aiming for my face I believe) while laughing and imitating my "mad voice" (that happened just a couple of hours ago...ahem...)..
These are a few of the things I know now that I didn't before:
-Time goes by so quickly with these little loves. They go through phases, changing almost completely within a matter of 6 months
-Sometimes all you have to do to end a toddler tantrum is suddenly exclaim something like: "Woah!! Someone is walking this way with their dog!!"
-If you can just get through the moment it'll probably be alright in the next one. It might even be the best part of the day (in a good way...or a mediocre way but still)
-In general, as long as you put your foot down and set some boundaries--the ones that are really important to you--you don't have to get the discipline stuff down perfectly in every crazy toddler tantrum moment
-Your kids will know where you stand as long as you're not a complete pushover all the time. It's okay if they walk over you a little bit if that's what gets you through a moment or an entire day
-If you can stop yourself once in a while before getting annoyed at their craziness or feeling flabbergasted with their maniacal, senseless laughing (I wouldn't know about this but I've heard from other parents......what?) you might be able to laugh along with them or join in the craziness and end up having a blast
I had heard all of this from seasoned parents while Zoe was this age but didn't really know for myself until I saw her through it. It's allowing me to focus on the good stuff with Owen and I'm grateful for that.
Anyway because I know you're dying to see a million pictures of Owen doing cute things this week, I'll indulge you. You're welcome!
Monday was Nathan's day off and the first day Zoe drove off with Grandma and Peepaw, so we took him to The Children's Museum of Denver. We hadn't been in a while and they've made tons of amazing improvements since. It was fun to watch Owen choose the stuff he wanted to do the most and go through it all at his own pace.
|First stop, the fire truck...learning how to call 911|
|The mini-grocery store. Always my favorite stop...so cute to see all the kids taking on roles without much (if any) guidance from their parents. I don't know why, but it cracks me up!|
|The bubble room...getting ready to catch a falling vapor filled bubble|
|Trains..I was predicting this to be the longest stop, but he didn't spend much time in here. Funny how we think we know our kids...|
|Ball tracks. This was very cool but he had trouble following where the balls went so we didn't spend much time.|
|Mini-veterinary hospital...a new favorite for me.|
|I love this picture so much..so focused!|
|"Heh-woh? Da cat is sick. Heh-woh? Da cat is sick....she didn't say anything!!"|
|Launching paper rockets...lots of belly laughs here.|
|Learning to use tools with Daddy|
|Temporary water exhibit outside|
|Play treehouse. Another of my favorites at this museum.|
|The Old Mill|
In the days leading up to this week, we asked Owen a few times what the "one thing" he wanted to do was and he repeatedly said "Go to the Rocketship Paygound!"...which is just down the road from us. We don't go much because it's really hot in the summertime and windy in cooler weather but he doesn't ask to go very often. I was so surprised to find out that it was the "one thing" he wanted to do during his special Owen-week. Since it was just me and him, I asked him if he wanted to try riding his Strider there and back all on his own and he was PUMPED to do so. It was kind of stressful/hilarious teaching him to stay on the right on the creek path. I would tell him to stay along the side, he would do so and immediately float to the middle/left side. I'd say (while pointing): "Stay on the right, buddy" and he'd yell (and drift to the left): "I'M STAYIN'!! I'M STAYIN'!!!"
|Top o' the rocket|
Last night we met Nathan up on campus for a picnic dinner. It was really fun and reminded both me and Nathan of the days he and Zoe would meet me for dinner at Bryant Park in the good ol' New York days. After eating we walked around a bit and got a tour of the CSF theatre. Upon entering and seeing where we were, Owen started running and yelling "The outside thee-tah! The outside thee-tah!! Yay!!"
|Owen told me today that in this picture, he was "pee-tendin' to watch Daddy in the show"|
This morning, after sleeping in until 10:30 (I was so relieved to find he wasn't sick--he's never slept that late without waking up really sick) he and I went to Moe's to get bagels for lunch and then Jamba Juice to enjoy some smoothies, hang out, watch cars go by, play games and chat. This is another of his favorite outings so I vowed to stay until he was ready to go. We stayed for an hour and a half!
|Ahhh....what a week.|