Eighteen Months

 

Last week, Tiny Tin Bird turned 18 months old. I’m not sure why this feels like a big milestone, but I’m pretty proud of how he is doing so far. He is both easy peasy and really challenging but generally our days are enjoyable together and he seems to be doing some impressive (to me) things.

 

I think it’s amazing just how child like he is these days. I catch him doing things and I have to catch my breath a bit when I think that that little boy over there is the same baby I carried in me, and who was so tiny and dependant on me. Now he sits cross legged to read his books and can use a fork and a spoon. Incredible. Pregnancy and birth and growing up are the most natural things in the world but I actually find it very magical, mind blowing and incredible.

 

At the moment, TTB is very chatty and he is really coming on well with his speech. He has always known/been able to recognise more words than he can say and a lot of his utterances are based around a sort of “a-da” or “oh dear” sound but are identifiable if you know to listen for it. If he can’t pronounce a word he will revert back to that sound pattern and use a different emphasis. I’m trying to get him to say “please” but he can’t make the actual sound so (I like to think) he says “oh dear” but with a different tone that is unique to the “please” usage. “Oh dear” generally means “something is not the way I want it, please make it so” ;-)

Words he consistently says include: mama, grandma (mam-maah), daddy, raa-raa (Auntie Rachie), Pa (both Uncle Patch and Postman Pat), door, dog, duck, cat, deer, ele (elephant), all gone, book, bath, light, drink, cup, tea, no, ball, hiya, hello, bubble, Bop (from Abney and Teal), choo-choo train, truck, car, digger, down, out. Also he knows the names of some of his friends which is nice. There are probably more but they just sound like oh dear. He likes to point at things and have us tell him the word. He has put together a couple of words too, he went into our room expecting Andy to be there (he was at work) and said “dada all gone!” in a sad little voice. Aww!

 

I am trying to take him swimming every week now and it’s great to see him growing in confidence. The first two times we went, he didn’t want to let go of me but the 3rd time he was happy to walk around the pool by himself and do some splashing. It makes me happy to see him doing that and I would really like him to be confident in the water so I will definitely keep taking him. I’m itching to go and have a proper swim myself really but at the moment I’m just making do with bopping around the toddler pool on my knees and keeping him from going under.

He makes me laugh a lot. He has started laughing at jokes that people make, not because he gets them but because he thinks that’s what you do. He also likes to make you laugh on purpose: when my mum and sister were here last week, he copied a sneeze and saw that we all laughed at him doing it, so he did it over and over and laughed at what he was doing and laughed because it was making us laugh. I love seeing his understanding of things and how he tries to make sense of everything.

I actually find his making sense of the world and how he understands things to be fascinating. He makes connections that I wouldn’t have expected him to, like he knows what a door is and can recognise it in books but he also knows that a car door is a door despite it looking totally different and us rarely going in the car. I didn’t teach him that, he just worked it out himself. And he knows which way up to read a book! That kind of thing. He can follow a plot in an episode of Postman Pat or Abney and Teal, and will say “oh dear, oh dear!” in a concerned way when something upsetting (well as upsetting as an episode of Postman Pat is, you know what I mean) and then be chipper and wave when the issue is resolved.

He gets excited when he recognises something when we are out, like today there was a painting of a dog in a cafe and he was excited to know that it was a dog. He found a free magazine that my mum left here and sat down with it like a book. He turned the pages until he found something he recognised and excitedly told us all about the cars he could see.

I try to remember all the little funny things he does too but I think I forget more than I’d like. After months of being scared of the hoover he now wants to join in, but mostly he likes to stand at the back of it with his hands each side and put his face above the bit where the air blows out so that his hair puffs up in the air. He likes to put on any shoes and socks that he can find, and also trousers and tops but he always puts them on his right leg. He comes up to me all proud because he has put a tshirt on, but it’s just on his right leg!

I said that my mum and Rachel visited us last week. He really, really, REALLY adores his Grandma. They arrived during his naptime, and so went to get him when he woke up. He was SO thrilled to see them that he just could not stop hugging my mum! And then he got down and went to hug Auntie Rachie … but oh no, he couldn’t stop hugging Grandma and just HAD to have more hugs!

When Andy fills his coffee machine, he lets TTB sniff the bag of coffee. A couple of weeks ago he unpacked the bags of shopping I’d left on the floor and found a new bag. He picked it up and held it out to Andy for him to sniff! He likes to do things like that to you, that you have previously done for him. And then the other day when Andy was doing his coffee, TTB ran up to him and stood next to him sniffing loudly! He had seen what Andy was doing and he wanted to smell the coffee! He will also stand next to plants and flowers and sniff/huff loudly and dramatically as he thinks that is what you do with them. Makes me smile loads.

It’s not always easy having an 18 month old. I don’t know if it’s an age thing or just a him thing but he is very strong willed and determined and also very strong. He strops quite a lot and makes a big fuss if something isn’t his way. It’s a balancing act trying to time everything right so that he has enough activity in the morning but also isn’t so tired that he can’t eat lunch. He is a bit fussier with food than he has been previously but I think he is still quite good. When he finds something he likes, he will eat a lot of it! Sleeping is a big problem for us still and I’m about to do some research into it because it’s getting harder to cope with. He and I co sleep each night on his floor (thank goodness for crocheted blankets – I sleep on the cashmerino ones I’ve made and they are lovely and soft.) because he can’t seem to sleep without me. It seems like separation anxiety mixed with teething pain. I didn’t mind too much to begin with but the floor is getting less and less comfortable and I miss my bed. If it wasn’t for this he would be the perfect child!

I don’t want to end on a bad note though! He really is wonderful and he lights up my life. He is so curious and cheeky and fun. I love his interest in everything and being by his side as he explores the world feels like the biggest privilege. When I see him doing something that I have taught him it feels very special. He is so loving and gives the best hugs and has started doing real big kisses on your cheek and trying to say I love you “a la la!” when you say it to him too.

I didn’t think much beyond “having a baby” when I was pregnant (just deal with the job in hand I say!) and was a bit apprehensive about the toddler stage whenever I spent time with any toddlers. Truth is, you grow with your child and I find it a lot easier and more enjoyable than having a small baby. People say things like, “oh you will have your work cut out now!” when your baby starts to crawl or walk but actually I think it gets easier the more they can do for themselves. Sitting up, crawling, walking, amusing themselves with independent play and books and such like, it’s great. I’m all for independent play! It’s much more freedom for me. I remember how difficult it was to cook while holding a baby! Now he can stand next to me on a chair and “help”, or just potter around and amuse himself. Sure, I have to chase him more and stop him climbing on things etc but it’s far preferable to having a baby I think. He is so much fun to be with! It’s enjoyable for both of us and he is a superstar. I tell him this and he goes “ssssusssusssaaaa!”

Superstar :)

 

 

 

28 thoughts on “Eighteen Months

  1. Amy says:

    Sweet but utterly boring post. When will parents realize that no one but them really cares that much to talk about their child/children.

    • Heather says:

      actually I had comments from readers asking for an update on TTB. Sooooooo not that boring to everyone but thanks for your input.

  2. I almost had forgotten about my little guy being that age, but your post brought back so much.

    He was picky at that age, too. One day he would eat e.g. cucumbers like it was the best food on the planet and the next time he wouldn’t even touch that stuff. It gets better!

    Sleeping: had the same issue and got mad at him for it (bad bad mummy) so i let him sleep alone. He cried at bedtime for three days and was fine with it after that. Funnily enough none of these famous books on sleeping habits helped, they made it worse, so you could call my “Bad Mummy” behaviour instinct?!

    Little Guy turns 3 in June… 18 months seems a lifetime ago… Makes me sad somehow…

  3. Kath says:

    I only discovered the wonderful world of blogs fairly recently, but when I found your blog I liked it so much I went back to the beginning and read all the way through, so I feel like I’ve been following you for ages :-). One of the lovely things about your blog is that you write about your very real, very normal life ( as well as the crochet!) and I think your readers feel that we have gotten to know you. We have followed TTBs story from the early days, and yes, we DO want to know how he is growing up, so please don’t stop telling us. Besides, it is your blog, for you to write about what you want. Although, I did want to ask for an Alice/Rachel/Patch update, but didn’t quite dare…..

    I hope you make progress with the sleeping issues and it gets easier.

  4. Alice says:

    Well I am very interested to hear about how TTB is doing, and this is a lovely post. I completely agree with you Heather, I too find looking after a toddler tonnes easier than a little baby. And it is incredible watching them grow. Mine (15 months) has just started blowing his nose – if you show him how to blow his nose into a tissue, and then hand him the tissue, he blows air out of his nose into the tissue and then smiles very proudly. Super-duper cute…and a million times more pleasant than trying to clamp a tissue around his snotty chops while he writhes and screams…

  5. I don’t usually comment but I really wanted to say what a lovely post this is. You have recorded wonderfully the little details of his growing-up that most parents forget.

    By the way I am currently making a blanket using your honey & roses pattern and it is working beautifully!

  6. cate says:

    I loved this post. It brought back so many wonderful memories of when my son was the same age. Children grow so fast. I would love to go back and do it all over again. I hope you don’t hesitate to write about TTB again, because there are a lot of us who are genuinely interested, and those who aren’t can skip reading the post that day!!!

  7. One-oh-four says:

    Awww, so cute, especially the picture of you both in the mirror! It’s lovely that you are able to document all these milestones as he grows up, I wish I had done something similar with my two. I’m fascinated by the coffee-sniffing – mine both hated the smell of coffee and would screw up their faces in a very unattractive manner if they got a whiff of it. So, current milestones for my two – eldest is now quite competent with a razor (*gulp*) and younger one seems to have just noticed that boys exist (*double gulp*). Wish they were still toddlers…..:)

  8. It’s a wonderful age. It was one of my favorite stages with both of mine. It’s harder in some respects than the baby stage because they struggle so much to be independent but it’s easier in many ways too. Enjoy it, it will fly past.

  9. Cyndy Regeling says:

    What a delightful post! They are so precious at this stage and you are a very wise mom to enjoy and savour every bit of it! No, they are not perfect but God really knows exactly what little character would make a perfect fit in each family :) enjoy!

  10. Angharad says:

    Lovely post. And to the commenter who said boring – why did you read it? Why do you follow this blog? I agree with the commenter who said how nice it is to read snippets of your normal life with your gorgeous boy. My baby’s 9 months and I’m so enjoying him growing up. And looking forward to the chatty, walky-talky times! Keep blogging, we love your stuff! :)

  11. Angharad says:

    Lovely post. And to the commenter who said boring – why did you read it? Why do you follow this blog? I agree with the commenter who said how nice it is to read snippets of your normal life with your gorgeous boy. My baby\’s 9 months and I\’m so enjoying him growing up. And looking forward to the chatty, walky-talky times! Keep blogging, we love your stuff! :)

  12. Lexi says:

    Lovely post. My daughter is 13 months and I agree, the more independent they get, the better it is despite the strong will and tantrums!

  13. Jess says:

    I think I speak for everyone when I say Amy’s post was totally uncalled for. Take no notice. I have followed your blog from nearly the beginning and have loved hearing about your boy! My son is five and my little girl is twelve months and I can identify with a lot of your milestones and issues but also the complete delight and fascination that is watching your children develop. Please carry on with the updates! One negative comment does not reflect the opinions of everyone else x

  14. Wendy says:

    Lovely post, Heather. I have followed your blog from the beginning and have enjoyed all aspects of it. Love the pic….. beautiful!

  15. Have a look at “The No-Cry Sleep Solution” by Elizabeth Pantley (got mine from Amazon) – it is the best book I’ve found for helping to cope with children who don’t sleep well. It’s written by a Mum with lots of input from other Mums, so there’s nothing about leaving your child to scream indefinitely (and they will!) but plenty of support and great ideas. TTB is a sweetie and you are right to enjoy every moment because they go past so fast xx

  16. Em says:

    Children’s development is fascinating. Remember your child understands a lot more than they can say, (something along the lines of a 3 year old can understand what a five year old can say or somesuch)

    I am in no way telling you how to deal with your child. YOU are doing a great job, I found sitting down with a child and saying this is what is going to happen really helped them accept a change. ” Mummy and Daddy have decided that we are are going to sit in the sitting room after you have had your bath and story, we will be here but you will be going to sleep by yourself now”.

    I found that as soon as a child can say what they need/want the tantrums reduced!

  17. Yvette says:

    My baby boy turned 13 today and this post brought back so many memories of him growing from a baby to a boy. He also used the word a-da with various inflections to get his point across and was so independent he would rather do something than talk about it first.

    I am really glad you are using your blog as a way to record these early years because I didn’t write anything down about either of my children beyond the first few months and I really wish I had now.

    Thank you so much for sharing your little ones life and helping me remember my own little ones oh so long ago but maybe only yesterday. :)

  18. Nanita says:

    Little Superstar indeed! It must be truly fascinating to see your child evolve, I love the attention you give to every detail and your enthusiasm! TTB is one very loved superstar :-) Brilliant picture there of you both! xxxx

  19. A lovely post, brings back memories of my children when they were little (they are now teenagers/early twenties). It is quite true, you grow with them and each stage of their development is a stage of growth and learning for you as a parent and I have enjoyed every single stage, and continue to do so as they head off into the world as independent adults.
    Enjoy little TTB and thanks for sharing, yet another, very honest post.
    Caz xx

  20. Wow, what a wonderful post. My youngest is three now and I wish I had recorded more stuff like this with all three of my children. I feel as if their childhood is slipping out of my memory already! The bit about how amazing children are at learning and understanding really struck a chord with me. Recently my 3 year old was assessed as part of a survey we’ve been taking part in for a few years now. The interviewer showed him a set of four pictures and then gave him a 5th on a card and he had to work out which picture matched the card. For example, on the set of four pictures, all were birds, three garden birds and one hen. he was given a picture of a rooster and had to work out it belonged with the hen. Some of the connections were much less obvious than that and I was amazed (and proud) that he got them right. Children’s capacity to learn is truly amazing. I hope you continue to enjoy it (and record it too – don’t listen to negative comments).

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