More behaviour…

I thought I’d better update, as it’s been a while since I last posted, and in the last post, Ollie had a bad cough, and was going to the doctors!

Well he got over that one, though I got through so many tissues, I started using a muslin square to wipe his nose.

The best news is that I can see better behaviour in both the boys. Thomas still has his moments, but he responds well to being told off, in that he seems to remember, and actually do what I say! I do have to tell him about 10 times, but I think I remember reading somewhere that you shouldn’t expect your toddler to respond straight away. The first couple of times actually get his attention from whatever he was doing, then the next few times he has to process the information, and then co-ordinate his body to do said command. It is hard to keep your patience though!

Ollie is also being much more responsive to me, and doing what I say, which makes things much easier. He’s really really into numbers at the moment. As I type, he is waving a Boots voucher in my face and saying “FIVE! FIVE! FIVE!” He can say 2 now, and eight and nine, but he is still most comfortable with 3,4,5, and 6.

A quick word about accents here. Both boys, but especially Ollie, say “Mummay” instead of mummy. Thomas still says “roight” and “moine” instead of “right” and “mine”. Ollie says “aiyeet” instead of “eight”.

Thomas is also talking a lot more with other children, and will mention names and conversations he’s had with his friends. Unfortunately, he is also accosting complete strangers (grown-ups) and talking to them too. He pestered some poor woman in a sari yesterday shouting “What’s your name? WHAT’S YOUR NAME?!” and when she puzzledly told him, he quickly told her that he’d been to nursery, but we were going home for dinner, but daddy wouldn’t be there because he was at work, and he had done a marble painting at nursery and eaten banana, apple and some milk etc etc etc. Luckily most people think it’s cute, or at least smile and are kind, but I need to stop it, as, apart from everything else, I don’t want him to tell everyone where we’re going, who’s at home etc etc. He now introduces himself as Thomas Plans!

Something that really cheered me up the other day, was one of the staff at playgroup telling me he had a really good imagination, and that he was clever. Just a little comment, made me feel good all week, and on reflection, it’s not the fact that Thomas is clever that I’m feeling good about, it’s just that someone else thinks so, and was kind enough to tell me about it.

The BEST news this post is that BOTH boys slept through the night last night, for the first time in what feels like 6 months!

I’ll leave you with a glimpse into the hullabaloo that passes for dinner round our place:
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I thought I’d record a few more Ollie things.

Firstly, he’s still quite poorly, coughing a lot, snotty nose, but the high irritability level could just be a personality trait… Anyway, this means I’ve put the going-back-to-sleep-in-the-cot training on hold for now, which is a bit of a relief, as last night I pulled him straight into bed with me when he woke up and we both got a reasonable night’s sleep.

Secondly, he’s decided to grow a molar on the right-hand side of his mouth, before completing the front set. He has 4 on the top, 3 on the bottom, no incisors and 1 molar. Strange child.

Lastly, his vocabulary is really impressing me now. He said “wave” today. Not too impressive, I know, but considering Thomas didn’t really say anything til he was 2, it’s impressive for me. I do know personally some 18-month olds who talk more than him already, but it always seems funny to hear tiny voices saying things, like oompa-loompas, or Munchkins etc. Ollie is cutest when he’s counting, which he does quite often.

Lastly, his behaviour. He is extremely stubborn. He throws tantrums all the time. He flipped out at the doctors today, screaming and struggling. I had to prise his jaws open physically at the dentists the other day. He throws himself on the floor to crack his head at any opportunity. At this age I don’t know what to do. He doesn’t get what he wants when he throws a tantrum, as they are almost always about things I have no control over anyway! He can be playing with a toy and suddenly get so frustrated with it, he screams and throws it across the room! He still hits me and Thomas. I tried to get him to say sorry today. I’m sure he understands how to sign it at least – even Thomas was signing sorry at this age. But when I asked him to say sorry, he got angry and shouted “NO!” every time…

I’m hoping that over the next few months, as he gets a bit more of a handle on the world, and understands it and is less frustrated by it, he will calm down a bit. He’s very amenable when he’s in a good mood: he is happy to help tidy things, he loves joining in singing and dancing, and is pretty good at these things too! Oh, he recognises the letter ‘W’ now as well.

On a lighter note, Thomas is already becoming a bit nicer, with the unpleasant behaviour only occurring when he’s really tired, or he’s forgotten about being good!


God shall provide…

Well, you may call me a hypocrite, as I’m pretty much a confirmed atheist at the moment, but something happened that made me smile. I’ve been stressing over the lack of long-sleeved t-shirts for Ollie. It’s not that he doesn’t have millions, but a combination of a bad cold, huge molars coming through, fierce independence at mealtimes and intermittent heating+hot water over the last couple of weeks have left me short, and resorting to pyjama tops (no difference really). Then, at toddler group today I was pointed to a table full of clothes and told to pick out anything I wanted, as they were leftovers from the Autumn Fayre. I came home with a bag full of clothes for nothing! I’m not feeling smug, in that I still want to give the equivalent money to charity, but I do feel that my need was provided for, at a church.

I said I would keep you posted with the sleeping. Well, Ollie did sleep til about 4.15am which was a good start. I went and told him that, no he wasn’t coming out, and he should go back to sleep. Well, at first he was curious as to why I was trying to wriggle into a small ball at the end of Thomas’ bed (the bean bag was a total dead loss), but soon enough, he became enraged that I wasn’t doing what he asked so he screamed for a while. Eventually, when all went quiet I got up to have a look, to see two big eyes looking right back at me. Damn. Back to my scrunched up ball at the end of Thomas’ bed. Finally, when he realised nothing exciting was going to happen, he did get back to sleep. I dragged myself back to my bed at about 5.30am. He woke up again at 6.10. I managed to drag myself out of bed and decided that it was too late to do the whole going back to sleep thing so fell with him back into my bed. This meant we didn’t wake up til 8am and messed up our routine. We’ll see how we go tonight.

I leave you with a couple of pics of us at Wisley Gardens. Thomas got a chance to put his birthday present, a camera, to good use.



onwards and upwards

I haven’t posted for a while, so you’ll be missing a few things, but most importantly Ollie is growing up fast now.

He has started saying cute things like “Bless you!” and counting stairs, which he does with 3,4,5 and 6. He always points out the letter ‘o’ but most other letters he calls ‘c’. He tried to say “nobody” from Goodnight Moon, but can only really say “body!” Interestingly, he has the same incorrect intonation for it (no-BO-dy, instead of NO-body) that Thomas had. He has become much more touchy-feely and will often come over for a cuddle, or play with your hand while occupied with something else. When I’ve said goodnight to him he’ll stand in his cot and say “CUGGLE!” so I have to go back and give him a quick cuddle.

We’ve had a great new book given to us called “Hippos Go Beserk!” which I totally love.

We are having behavioural difficulties. Firstly with sleep – it got to a point where neither of them were sleeping through, so we were hauling them into our bed and spending nights being kicked and smothered. I was waking up with a crick in the neck from awkward sleeping conditions! Thomas is well on the way to being ” solved” using the sticker-and-chocolate-button-at-breakfast technique my friend told me about. Ollie, is too young for this method, as he doesn’t really understand the concept of being rewarded for a night’s sleep. He’s also had a cold, which made us feel a bit sorry for him, so he’s still been coming into our bed, but he keeps waking himself, and us with a blood-chilling scream once in a while, as well as the kicking and the coughing, and the occasional “MUMMAY!” I’m going to start a new technique this week, to get him used to falling back asleep in his cot again. It will be exhausting for me, but I think a good half-way step before controlled-crying, which I’m hoping might not even be necessary. I’m going to go and doze on a beanbag, with a blanket next to his cot until he goes back to sleep. I’ll let you know how we get on.

Also, we are having to tell Thomas off a lot more lately, as he’s become very lippy lately. He talks to us exactly how we speak to him, so he gives us warnings, threatens to put us to bed or in the corridor, and tries to make bargains to get what he wants. I have put him in the corridor a couple of times, just for the way he speaks to me, which seems so awfully fascist, that it feels weird to blog about. But on the other hand, if we don’t nip it in the bud, I’m worried he’ll think it’s the normal thing to do. I can just see him trying to tell his teacher that s/he will have to write lines if s/he doesn’t do what he wants!

Anyway, on a happier note, David and I are starting to get the whole music-making machine working. We released an EP called Miles Away. Subplan Also on myspace.com/Subplan and facebook. Unfortunately, a printing error put the play speeds the wrong way around on the vinyl, so we manually corrected them:
I’ve started to become frustrated at the lack of time I have to make tracks myself. At the moment I mostly just manage to pass on a riff or an idea to David who can take it away and work on it, but I’m itching to get to the laptop myself. I’m just learning Logic Pro for the Mac. I have been tempted to apply for a [proper] job, but my confidence is wavering. I’ll let you know if I get the application in or not!

Anyway, I took Ollie to meet up with his friends, well, so I could meet up with mine, really, and got some cute pictures:
Ollie + playmates