Train Track Tuesday

Now that our wooden train track layouts are so very elaborate, I don’t have enough time to build one every day.  Here’s the first Train Track Tuesday layout.

Train Track Tuesday (Motherhood Looms)

Train track elements used: Chuggington Double Decker Roundhouse, Chuggington Wooden Railway Koko and Hodge’s Clock Tower Set, Thomas and Friends Wooden Railway Echo Tunnel, Maxim tunnel, Maxim Viaduct bridge.

Happy Birthday to My Baby Boy

Happy Birthday, Norton!

Three years ago today, I started the day out like this:

Happy Birthday to My Baby Boy

Obviously, I was quite uncomfortable and just dying for a certain little boy to make his exit.

It took a while.  There was a lot of time lying around the hospital and waiting for my scheduled cesarean.  The cesarean was only scheduled because of risks of complications due to a variety of other things.  (It was not an elective c-section.)  Still, though, I spent the day lying around the hospital, absolutely hungry and desperately thirsty.  I was eager for Norton to get out.  Sure, I was ready to not be pregnant anymore, and I really wanted food.  But I was also looking forward to finally meeting my little boy.

The husband and I had some plans in place.  He was going to go in the operating room with me and hold my hand while our baby boy was making his entrance.  As soon as Norton was out, he was going to accompany our boy to wherever he went.  Norton would never, ever be left alone.

I missed a few things.  I wasn’t around for this.

When I was stitched up and done, I wasn’t really in a state to hold him, as I had to be sedated for the surgery.  There were some things that I didn’t get to do, like his first bottle.

But once I was?

I was in love.

Still, though, there were some things that I wasn’t able to do quite yet.  Actually, I never mastered the art of the Baby Burrito.

Happy Birthday to My Baby Boy (Motherhood Looms)

Fortunately, there were swaddles for that.  Still, I’m pretty darned amazed that he went from being that tiny little boy (well, not quite so tiny; he was eight pounds and four ounces) to being my running, climbing, testy, determined, sweet little boy.

Happy birthday, Norton!

Happy Birthday to My Baby Boy (Motherhood Looms)

Preschool Whine – Want Some Cheese with that?

We seem to have entered a new phase in child development.  It is, in all honesty, a phase that I could have done without.  We have found the Preschool Whine.  I have to say, it’s probably one of the more irritating stages of child development.  It’s also one that has me at my wit’s end.

Preschool Whine - Want Some Cheese with that? (Motherhood Looms)

Image courtesy of digitalart / FreeDigitalPhotos.net 

Some days are, of course, worse than others.  Yesterday was such an awful preschool whine day that I spent a lot of time sending Norton to his room for throwing a tantrum when I refused to give into his demands.  Not until he uses a big boy voice.  It was just maddening.  It seemed like no sooner than I’d let him out of his room than I’d be sending him back for the same preschool whine.

I have no idea where this sudden need to whine came from.  I get whining.  I do.  But when he goes straight for the preschool whine voice when he wants to watch Fefee Feet (or Sesame Street) or wants a slice of bread for a snack, it just gets right on my nerves.  When it’s the entire blasted day, it’s even worse.

I got annoyed and offered him some cheese with his preschool whine.  He took the string cheese… and then fed it to the dog.  After the dog ate his cheese, he promptly kicked it… and was sent back to his room.  The whining continued right up until his daddy came home at 6 pm.  I’m starting to wonder if maybe sending him to his room is no longer a good time out since it has zero impact on the behavior, but at least it gets him out of my hair when he starts ticking me off.

I don’t particularly enjoy sending him to his room.  I’d much rather have wonderful happy times of bonding over books instead of someone raging because I won’t give him more fruit bites or turn on Sesame Street so he can leave the room (or throw a tantrum) when Elmo isn’t on the screen.

I also know that I was late at nipping the preschool whine in the bud.  In the beginning, I’d give him what he wanted when he whined because at least he was using words.  After the hurdle of overcoming a toddler language delay, I had no desire to do anything that would impede his use of language.  Now I’m wondering if that only made the issue worse.

Have you had to put up with a whining child?  How did you get the preschool whine out of your stock?

 

Preschool Illness – I’m So Over This

Norton has been in preschool for nearly a month now.  Or, more to the point, he’s been enrolled in preschool for nearly a month now.  Unfortunately, he’s only gotten to go about a half a dozen times.  Preschool illness is keeping us down.

Preschool Illness - I'm So Over This (Motherhood Looms)

Admire the runny nose from the latest round of preschool illness to hit our home.

I know that preschool illness is to be expected.  He’s never been exposed to the majority of grossness out there, so he’s had no opportunity to actually develop an immunity to the bugs that are floating around.  That the bugs this year seem to be of the really bad, nasty hang around forever types certainly doesn’t help.

Since I’m a responsible parent, I don’t send my child off with a preschool illness to spread around the class.  This is a true preschool where the children attend for two mornings a week for less than three hours, so it’s not really a “parents have no choice when they have to work” sort of situation.  With that in mind, I don’t understand why anyone else would send their kid carrying whatever plague off to school.  Or even if they are actually sending plague ridden children.

It’s pretty much the only explanation I have, anyway.

In the meantime, I’m coping as best as I can.  Part of that, of course, means helping Norton cope as best as he can.  That means lots of Sesame Street, lots of cuddles, reading stories whenever he wants, and giving him copious amounts of chicken noodle soup for lunch.  He gets dosed with Children’s Tylenol whenever he seems to just plain ache.  We’re attempting to keep the plague contained and treated as much as possible.

It sucks that we can’t send him off to school this morning.  He’s got a ton of energy and was really excited to go to school when he got out of bed this morning.  As soon as I said the word “school,” his eyes lit right up and he was ready to go.  But when he started coughing and his nose started running, I knew that I could not send him.

Have you ever experienced the overabundance of preschool illness?  How did you finally get your child healthy?  (I’m sincerely hoping that there’s something else out there for him… other than time.)

Starting Preschool – Norton’s Latest Milestone

Starting Preschool - Norton's Latest Milestone (Motherhood Looms)I’ve had to come to some realizations with Norton lately.  One of them is that he really, really needs to be around other kids more.  The other is that I’m too much of a shut in to make sure that need is met.  That has caused me to revise some of my original parenting plans… and it’s also led to us starting preschool.

Starting preschool was never in my list of things to do.  My plan was to homeschool both of my littles and give them a far superior education to what they’d find in public schools.  It’s my expectation that both of my kids would belong in gifted programs, and gifted programs here are fairly non-existent.  So now I’ve re-evaluated and done a parenting plan reset.  Norton is now officially a preschool boy instead of a toddler.

Wow.

I have to say, starting preschool was a lot easier than we’d anticipated.  I only had a night’s notice since we weren’t sure if there would be room for him in the school that we’d wanted him in.  But fortunately, Norton’s only knowledge of preschool was based on Sesame Street presenting it like a wonderful thing.  Oh, and the weekly toddler language delay playgroup that Norton went to last spring.

I didn’t say anything to Norton about starting preschool until he was getting out of bed.  He was just so excited about going on this brand new adventure.  When we got to his new preschool (which was really an easy thing for me to go with; it was the same care provider that kept Andy after school when he was a little boy), Norton just took off.  He wandered up the stairs with a big smile on his face.  He was saying hello to every child he encountered.  He sat right down in a chair near me to graze from the fruit tray on the table for open snack time.

And of course, when he saw the carpet on the floor with a beautifully laid out wooden train set, he was hooked.  I suspect that starting preschool was like Norton’s view of toddler preschool heaven.  When I finished filling out the paperwork and got ready to leave, Norton quickly gave me a bye kiss and ran back off to play.

Wow.  No separation anxiety whatsoever.  How awesome is that?

After I left, though, everything wasn’t quite so seemless.  He didn’t care for clean up time.  He wasn’t cooperative for circle time.  (None of these things are particularly surprising; he didn’t care for those aspects of toddler playgroup, either.)  And since I didn’t know about daily outside play time, I didn’t bring him a snowsuit, so he was pretty cold and crying quite a lot when I got there.

Still, though, starting preschool was a pretty grand adventure.  I think he’s going to be thrilled to go back tomorrow.

Did you do preschool with your little ones?  How was starting preschool for them?  And you?