“Thank You”

Ivan said “thank you” this morning. I’ve heard him attempt it before but this morning was different in that he wasn’t repeating or imitating anyone and wasn’t prompted in anyway to say it.

I heard him whine and realized he was out of milk in his sippy cup so I offered milk. He nodded and grinned to say, yes. While I was pouring the milk I heard him saying something but was too occupied to really listen.

As I brought the milk toward him I realized he was grinning at me and saying “Dii Du” as if he were squeezing the words out of his mouth. It’s really funny to watch him try to talk because it really doesn’t come naturally to him. He has to work hard at expressing each syllable and sound. Regardless, I knew he meant thank you and I was terribly impressed.

18 Months

Ivan is 18 months today! He’s walking great, eating great, teething, drooling and into things. He’s a happy fellow, most of the time, and as I type is napping sweetly in his bed after a long day yesterday and bit of interrupted sleep out in a tent last night.

He had his first homemade Jello-pop this week and enjoyed it thoroughly. See picture to the left. He will try almost anything and isn’t afraid of a little spice.

He is learning to play with Owen a little more, he follows him around and tries to do almost everything he does. Owen gets a little annoyed at times but usually is happy for the company. Just a moment ago Owen pulled a few toys out and laid them in a neat row on the floor announcing that he was “leaving these here for me and Ivan.” Owen does tend to push Ivan around a little and Ivan doesn’t complain too much. He is beginning to answer physically though, pushing back and forcefully moving into Owen’s space if he feels that he’s in any way being left out. Owen will have a lot to contend with if he doesn’t learn to make friends with the little guy now.

The next few months will be quite interesting as Ivan will be adjusting to some changes coming in the form of a new brother. The first step will be adjusting to new sleeping arrangements as we will be taking his bed from him very soon. First we have to figure out what we will do for his new bed. Should they share the queen or do we buy bunk-beds? Any thoughts?

Food the Great Speech Motivator

Ivan loves food. He would eat almost constantly if I let him and likes most of what I put in front of him. He will do what it takes to get it and I’ve been using this to my advantage. Yesterday, he wanted some cheese. I insisted that he say “cheese” before I give it to him and after a little coaxing he smiled and said “gese!”. I applauded and gave him several slices. Later, he made it clear through pointing and grunting that he would like an apple. Again, I insisted on hearing the request and with much effort he was able to come up with “pul!” And again he was rewarded handsomely. I think he does try to talk now and then but it’s almost as if there is a time delay between when he wants to say something and actually getting it out of his mouth. As if he has to think through the syllables before he can form them. I’m sure this will change with practice and it makes me happy that he’s making as much effort as he has been lately.

Will of Ivan

Ivan is a tester. He is not afraid of a spanking or two and it usually takes three to really get him mad. Not that I am trying to make him mad, that’s just what happens when he is made to realize he is not in control of me or the rest of the house.

Today it was something seemingly simple, I guess it usually is. He wanted to play with his car downstairs and we made a rule long before he was ever thought of that states as follows: “No toys shall be brought downstairs, only toys that are designated ‘downstairs toys’ will be allowed downstairs. All other toys must remain in the play space upstairs.”

Now, I don’t have the 10 commandments of toys written out anywhere but we truly do try to keep the downstairs less cluttered by keeping this rule. Ivan has gotten away with bringing toys downstairs in the past because I wasn’t convinced that he understood the rule. When my hands are busy I don’t have the ability to enforce it, so if I were to tell him to take the toy back upstairs I would just be saying it over and over again to absolutely no avail.

I have been convinced recently that Ivan absolutely knows the rule and simply doesn’t think it applies to him. So today I took a stand. I’ve taken stands of this nature before with Ivan, the most recent being the lay down at nap time caper. It has been proven to me that spanking him one time does not convince him that I am serious. Three times is certainly the charm.

Today again it took three spankings and my standing at the bottom of the stairs coaxing him along before he very angrily climbed himself and his car to the top. How does one crawl up the stairs angrily you may ask. Well, It’s sort of a stomping with both hands and feet, an increase in speed as to get the job done quickly and with finality, and then add to that a lot of tossing of the head while crying and every now and then looking back at that mean mom to make sure she sees how very much he dislikes this.

He stopped crying within seconds of being upstairs, he was red in the face angry, but he did the job and I doubt I’ll have trouble with this issue again. Once he understands how serious I am about something he usually obeys quickly the next time around. Ever since the lay down in bed tantrum, I can say lay down to him at bedtime and he drops like a stone.

Unfortunately, I don’t know how many more of these “stands” are in our future but I hope that if we can squeeze enough of them in before he reaches 4, I won’t have too many of them in his teenage years.

Ya’ll pray for me.