Donovan


Donovan is always so quick to make friends wherever he goes.

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“Hey guys. What are you doing? What’s your name? I’m Donovan!” And those boys were equally nice to let him play with them.

Love my little man.

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This morning, Grant went to wake up Donovan.  He turned on the hall light, opened his door and gently rubbed his back.  Donovan woke up and said, “Turn the light off.”  So Grant did.  Then he said, “Close the door.”  Grant closed the door.

Already, the kid is revolting against getting up in the morning.

Grant went back in after letting him lay there another 2 minutes and told him it was time to get up.  After brushing his teeth, he said, “I don’t wana go to school today.”

Dude, you’re 2.  Just wait till you have homework! Then, you can complain about not wanting to go to school.

Instead of telling him this, I just said, “You need to go to school today and tomorrow, then on Friday you get to go to work with daddy.”  (luckily school is closed on Friday anyway).  And the prospect of going to work with daddy??  He was pumped for the day.

Not wanting to get out of bed or go to school?  What is he? 14?

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Happy birthday, my sweet little man! These 2 years with you have been the best of my life. Your daddy and I were blessed by God to be your parents, and I thank Him every day for bringing you to us.

I can’t explain what you mean to me, and I can’t imagine my life without you. You are the funniest, happiest (most of the time), most polite, energetic, smartest, ridiculously athletic 2 yr old I have ever met. You continue to amaze us every day. I soooo look forward to what the future holds for you! And I soooooo love being your mama!!

Donovan is not yet 2 and already he is using the potty like a pro.

 

Sort of.

This is what we have at home:

 

A little reading material (what bathroom is complete without it?) and the ever so important towel underneath.  At first, I only put this down because he didn’t like his little feet making contact with the cold tile floor.  Last night, I discovered a second function.  Pee-soaker-upper.  Little man sat to pee and it ended up coming out all over the place, including on my slippers.  He was so proud of himself for sitting on the potty, that I ignored the puddles on the floor and congratulated him anyways. THEN I grabbed the towels and cleaned up.

Then I was putting some clothes away, and Donovan was hanging around with no undies on.  The next minute I turn to look and he has taken a dump on the floor.  So I rushed him back to his potty. Why didn’t anyone tell us that potty training your kid is like house training a dog?!?!!!!?

Ok, so I’m more than thrilled he is using the potty, especially since just about everyone kept telling us not to even start trying… boys take longer to train than girls… wait till he’s 3, that’s when he will get it.  Blah blah blah.  Never underestimate the smartness of Donovan Wilson (except when he pees on the floor and the couch, of course).

Now if you’ll excuse me, there are some pee-soaked towels that need to get washed….

 

After reading my friend, Deanna’s post, I decided I would post about my own mommy guilt.

I think as a mom, we try to be perfect.  Or at least we try to do it all.  We try to feed our kids all their fruits and vegetables at every meal; we try to keep them social and active by having play dates; we try to keep them from falling; keep them from crying; try to make sure they get plenty of attention from us, while also trying to give them the skills to play independently from us; we try to keep them from anything bad, damaging, or harmful.  We try to do all of these things all while trying to keep the house looking presentable, keep ourselves looking presentable, and giving the needed attention to not only our child(ren) but also our friends, ourselves, and our husbands.

The keyword in all of this?  Try.

We try to keep it all together and do everything we feel we are supposed to, but honestly (and I hope we can all agree on this) it doesn’t always happen.  At least not all in the same day.  I try to give Donovan enough fruits and veggies, but he can be a picky eater sometimes.  I’m ashamed to say, he might have one vegetable one day–or none–But then the next he will devour four cheese and spinach pasta sauce (with extra spinach I’ve added, to make up for the lost veggie days) and all will feel right in the world.

Lately, my mommy guilt is related to how much tv our child watches.  When I was pregnant, Grant and I would talk about what our baby would be like, the kind of person they would grow up to be, and what we would/wouldn’t let him/her do.  One of those things: our kid wasn’t going to watch tv until they were 4 or 5. And even then, they would only be allowed to watch the old-school “good” cartoons we had growing up (you know, Duck Tales, Chip n’ Dale’s Rescue Rangers) and sports.  I found Nick Jr to be a decent tv channel, and once I was searching for shows out of curiosity and came across Olivia and Little Bill.  Turns out Olivia has won Donovan’s heart.  We let him watch it once to see if it would be something we could put on for special occasions….

That’s been the beginning of the end….

He loves it so much that he completely zones out and gets sucked in like I’ve never seen.  Noticing this, I thought  ‘oh, I’ll let him watch one episode and I can cook dinner real quick without him hanging on me! I’m brilliant!’  After one episode ends, he asks for more. Well, one more is ok.  I’ll be able to unload the dishwasher without him trying to climb in, remove all the knives and go running through the house.

A good thing I’ve noticed about Olivia?  Donovan will tell me (in his own language) what is happening on the show.  He sees the mom picking up the baby and singing and Donovan will point to the tv and say, “Mama. Baby. Uppie. Mama. Sing.”  Maybe this is keeping me from completely getting rid of Olivia?

It’s the weekend.  I need a shower.  Grant’s at work.  Donovan has been all kinds of crazy.  “Wana watch Olivia?”  I’ve got him trained so that when he watches Olivia, he only sits on the blanket.  This keeps him from getting into things he shouldn’t when I’m in the shower.  When he’s around me, he’s never been particularly good at playing by himself.  Of course, I would love to be able to just sit him down with some play-doh or markers so he could do some artistic/mind-healthy activity while I’m showering or cooking, but he is constantly (still) putting those things into his mouth (!!!!).  So that’s a no-go.

And I feel guilty about letting him watch tv in the first place.  But after working all day, picking him up from daycare, we play for a little bit, but then I gotta get dinner together or squeeze in a quick run on the treadmill. And most nights, Grant is working until after 6 or even traveling, so I’m handling the end of the day stuff solo.  I honestly don’t know how else to do it now.

I’m trying to do it all, but realistically, I can’t.  I know I can’t.  So our new little helper Olivia is giving me a hand.  Good or bad, I’m letting my almost 2 yr old watch tv.

And even though I can’t always catch him when he falls, I am always there to make sure he is ok and can give him plenty of kisses to make it all better.  I think in the end that matters more than whether or not he ate his spinach, I got the laundry put away, or how much television he has watched in one day.  And I might always feel guilty about letting him watch tv so young, but it works for us right now.

Bragging side note: He loves watching sports and can tell the difference between soccer, football, basketball, hockey and baseball when they come on tv or he sees them in real life.  All of these sports have been part of his vocabulary for some time.  This not only makes his mommy happy, but especially daddy!  Oh, and he can do push ups…. for real…. not feeling guilty about that!

This Halloween was so much fun–well, after the costume arrived.  I ordered it online (pretty last minute) and was happy it got to us in plenty of time.

I chose a lion costume for him since we went to see his first movie, The Lion King in September. He happily sat through the whole thing (to my surprise!), so in honor of Simba, Mufasa, Nala, even Timone and Pumba, he was a lion. And yes, this picture was taken as he zipped by me with a mouth full of chocolate…

Speaking of chocolate, remember his costume from last year?

Ok, just making sure….

This year his class got in the Halloween spirit and had a field trip to the pumpkin patch!

“Mama! Heavvvvvyyy!”

I just had to chaperon since I missed out on his field trip to apple picking this year. The pumpkin patch included a hayride, picking out a pumpkin, apple cider and cider donuts.  It was a short, but fun little trip.

He loved the tractor!

Cider donut. Nom nom nom nom!

Donovan was excited to see the animals, but kept (enthusiastically) making the sound of a horse when he came to the goats–he’d never seen one in real life, and you don’t see many goats in children’s books.  Donovan, a goat doesn’t say “neigh!” it says….uh….it kinda sounds like a sheep!

Come Halloween….

Roaaaaaarrr! We ventured to about 6 houses in our neighborhood. We got to the first house, and even after teaching him how to say “trick or treat” he got shy and only said “thank you” after being able to pick out his piece of candy, which he held in his hand and refused to put in his bag.  The next house, the same thing. At this point, his hands were each holding a piece of candy. We ended up prying the candy out of his hands so he could gather more.

After it got dark, more kids came out and Donovan was checking out their costumes and not wanting to go inside–even though it was pretty cold.  After a couple more houses, we went home and ate dinner while simultaneously handing out candy. THIS was Donovan’s favorite part of the night. He kept asking us, “trick treat?” And we’d have to explain that he’d have to wait for the doorbell to ring.  And when it did, he eagerly went to the door with me and would drop candy in each kid’s bag.  At one point, even saying “more?”  I’d have to tell him that one was enough (I know, sorry trick or treaters).  One kid, he must’ve been no older than 6, after given his candy said, “that’s a cute kid you got there!”  So adorable.

All in all, it was a good Halloween.  Donovan got his costume in time.  He didn’t hate it.  We successfully trick or treated.  Donovan went to bed with a tummy full of candy.  Halloween. Can’t beat it.

One of the things that I love about Donovan’s daycare is that it’s not run like a daycare. It’s more like school, with lots of activities geared towards developing fine motor skills, language (including sign language) and a ton of art projects.  And they document EVERYTHING.  They are always sending home their projects with pictures of them doing the project, which is fun to see them in the process.

This happened to be the day they were playing with shaving cream…..

A couple weeks ago they had parent/teacher conferences–I know, it might seem ridiculous to have a meeting with his teachers, but it’s nice to hear how he is doing socially with the other kids (the biting has stopped), how he’s developing right on track with his language and motor skills (his vocabulary is increasing like crazy), and we found out that he LOVES doing art projects. I was both happy and sad to hear this. Sad because why didn’t I already know this?!  The pangs of mommy guilt set in quick–I didn’t know this already because I’m at work all day and he is spending his days at daycare.  Sure, on weekends, we color but half the time he seemed more interested in putting the pens, crayons, etc in his mouth… But I was happy to hear that he loved it so much.  We were told he is always the first one to the table and the last to leave.

This got me thinking about more artsy-type things we can do this winter when the weather is too cold to be outside.  But I need some help, readers.  I was never into art projects and am having trouble thinking of things to do. One idea I have is getting some paints and blank canvases and just letting him go to town. But besides that, I’m kind of stumped.  If you have kids, what kind of stuff do/did you do with them that they enjoyed?

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