Tuesday, 11 March 2014

toddler tales

A blog post has been brewing inside me for the last few weeks and I thought I'd use it to give you a glimpse into the exasperating, but often hilarious life with a toddler and a baby.

1. "What y'doing Mommy?"

Over the past few months Isaac has become quite the talker. He now uses almost full sentences and though he can still be hard to understand sometimes he's pretty good at getting his point across one way or another. A while ago I discovered that if he was in a different room I could ask him what he was doing and he would usually tell. So while changing Kateri's diaper or nursing her I'll call out, "What are you doing, Isaac?" and he'll respond with something like, "Isaac push buttons" (meaning he's banging on the computer keyboard--not allowed, by the way) or "Table--Mary, Joseph, Baby Jesus, Angel" (meaning he was up on the kitchen table, where he's not supposed to be, looking at the nativity set). At least he's honest, right?

Unfortunately, this has gotten him into the habit of "yelling" around the house, from room to room. He'll call out, "Mommy, stop!" as I walk into another room or, "Wait!" The other day I was in Isaac's room trying to put Kateri down for a nap (she often sleeps in there during the day since it's so dark and quiet). He noticed that I was gone and started yelling, "Mommy! What y'doing Mommy?". I try telling him to whisper but that only lasts for about 3 seconds before he's saying loudly "Mommy! Teri sleeping, Mommy." Arrgghhh. I have to remind myself that he's only two years old and really doesn't know any better at this point. Luckily, Kateri is still pretty easy to get to sleep, and at this rate she's really going to get used to falling asleep in a noisy environment.

2. Religious instruction

We're very blessed to have lots of help instructing our kids in the faith. Their Nana and Papa and Grandma will all help them to know Jesus as they grow up. Isaac can now do the sign of the cross (more or less), say the Our Father and Hail Mary and sing Salve Regina and Immaculate Mary in his own garbled way. However, a couple weeks ago we had a reminder that the more abstract aspects of faith still go way over his head.

My Mom was over for a visit. She said to Isaac, "Is Jesus in your heart? Is Jesus there in your heart?" touching his chest. Isaac looked down at his shirt then up at his Grandma and said, "That's Spiderman."

We tried explaining that Jesus was under his Spiderman shirt, inside of him, but I don't think he's quite there yet.

3. Craft time

Lately Isaac has been a little more into colouring and we finally got him a pair of little craft scissors, though I'm still afraid he'll find some way to mortally wound himself with them. Isaac loves his scissors. He'll cut paper, but what he really loves is to cut the things that he sees Mommy and Daddy cutting: cutting open packages, and snipping off tags. He once saw us cutting the bottoms off of some flower stems so now he thinks that flowers are for cutting. One day we were in the living room when Isaac noticed that his pants had drawstrings and then wandered into the other room. I didn't think anything of it, but a minute later when I went to go see what he was doing, he had already snipped his drawstrings off with his little scissors. Seriously, how sharp are they making those craft scissors these days? Fortunately, those drawstrings were decorative and not integral to the functioning of the pants.

4. Discipline

If anyone knows how to discipline a willful two-year-old could you please let me know? Actually never mind. I would probably get more answers to that question than I actually want. After all, there are no kids easier to discipline than other people's.

Isaac is not very sensitive, so no stern tone, or even raised voice, has the least effect on him. If anything, he thinks it's funny or exciting that he's getting an unusual reaction. He also treats being sent to his room for a time out like a big joke. What do you do with a kid like that? Wait till he gets older I guess.

5. Mirror Mirror

I often think how little kids are like mirrors, reflecting back the kind of behavior to which they are exposed. I'm sure some of Isaac's wildness is due to our laid back, but also messy and disorganized life. A while ago when Isaac was pretending to fix things with his play tools I noticed he would concentrate very hard on the object he was fixing, furrow his brow and say, "C'mon this!" which reminded me a lot of a certain husband when whatever he's working on is not cooperating.

On the other hand, after putting so much love into your little one, it's nice to see some of it start coming back out. For example, when we play mini-sticks together Isaac will say, "Good shot, Mommy!" and, of course, nothing is more charming than hearing him say, "I-uv-oo".

As much as this toddler phase can be exhausting, and frustrating I also find it utterly fascinating watching him learn and grow. I love that playing with him allows me to be a kid again. I love that I get to teach him about the world, and in return I get to see the world through his fresh, two-year-old eyes.

I realise that this post has mostly been about Isaac, so some of you may be wondering: what about Kateri? Well, she is doing splendidly! Those sweet little cheeks have rounded out into an adorable chubbiness. She is big for her age, though not nearly as big as her brother was, for which my back thanks her. She can hold her head up pretty well by now, and is starting to bat at her toys. She has her fussy times, but mostly it's pretty easy to convince her to show us her beautiful smile. And she sleeps! I can hardly believe it, but most nights she'll do a 5-7 hour stretch of sleep, wake up to eat for 10 minutes and then go right back to sleep for another few hours. Isaac never slept this well at this age and even now, most nights he's still up at least once.

Shoveling with Daddy.

It's a lot harder to do selfies with the big camera but we managed!

That smile charms us every time

Our attempt to get a family picture. At least one of our children knows how to smile for the camera!
Note: if this post seems a little disjointed it's because it took me several weeks to write. Isaac is no longer napping which cuts back a lot on my blogging time. I finally decided that it would be better to just get it done than to spend anymore time fiddling with it. Anyway, here's hoping the next one doesn't take so long!


  1. AWWW….Love love LOVE the update. Thanks for getting it down and posted. Kateri's growing by leaps and bounds…and so is Isaac too (I'm not forgetting you little man).

  2. Lovely, Steph! Kateri is adorable and I love all the cute Isaac stories. I've been debating when to take out the toddler scissors and... I think I'll wait a little longer after reading your tales :)

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