What we did: What a crazy busy month August has been! We completed on our new flat on 31 July so spent a lot of this month over there doing the work needed before we move in. Tom was a great help in stripping off the statement wallpaper but found the days we spent there quite boring as everyone was too busy to play with him and his attempts at helping with painting were not fully appreciated…
Tom, Piper and I spent the first August weekend at my parents’ house. Tom had a great time helping grandpa in the garden and loved playing with his new sandpit. We also attended a little rowing regatta near Henley. Tom has been every year since he was born. He behaved beautifully despite some issues with tantrums earlier in the day and had fun getting to know my friends. I’m the only one of the group with kids so there is no one else for him to play with yet, but he did really well with the long day.
The next weekend we went up to Suffolk for a friend’s wedding. More details on that here. Tom really enjoyed all the adult attention but especially seeing his cousin Rose, who is just 5 weeks younger than him. They really adore each other. We let them sleep in the same room on Saturday night, which they loved, although it did take quite a while before they stopped playing and dropped off to sleep. He also went swimming with John.
The Wednesday after we returned to my parents’ house before driving down to Somerset on Thursday to stay in a National Trust cottage before my cousin’s wedding on the Saturday. Tom did brilliantly with the long drive, though he did have a bit of trouble at the end on the way back – he was just really over being in the car at that point. He discovered board games for the first time, played in WW defenses on the beach, and bonded with my parents’ new puppy. He also behaved brilliantly at the wedding despite the late night and lack of a nap.
The final weekend we were back up to Suffolk for the funeral of Tom’s great grandmother. Again, the highlight for Tom was seeing Rose. We were fortunate to have beautiful weather and the two of them spent whole days outside in the courtyard playing, just returning to the house for food and sleep.
The last day of August was Tom’s 3rd birthday. Since Thursdays are a nursery day for him, he helped me to make a cake to take in to share with his friends. We celebrated as a family on Friday which will be part of the September summary.
Behaviour: Tom has had some challenging behaviour this month, not helped by how busy we have been and by us having a new baby and a new flat to concentrate on. He really struggles with listening to us and doing what he is told. He also had some major meltdowns early in the month, mainly to do with bathtime. However, I do feel like he was improving on this towards the end of the month, with frequent reminders to listen to mummy and daddy. John and I are trying to be more consistent with our response to trying behaviour which seems to be helping, though being sleep deprived means we are less patient than we should be.
We’ve also been working on him saying ‘please may I have’ rather than ‘I want’. Currently he still needs the reminder and will rarely get it right first time, but he’s getting better. He is great at saying thank you for things.
Working on: Tom really made a big shift in his independence this month. Perhaps having a little sister makes him feel more of a big kid? He has started getting in and out of his booster seat by himself, started putting on his own shoes, and is trying to master pants and trousers. He also has been much braver about getting in the pool and about my in-laws cat, who he has always been afraid of.
He also became interested in letters and has really improved his counting. He has great communication skills and has started telling us stories. John is teaching him left and right and he can identify which foot and hand is which and gets it right every time.
Playing with: He was loving the sandpits at both grandparents’ house this month. He still loves cars but plays with them less than he did. He also loves his plastic animals. He will often pretend to go to the shops. He still loves books and will ‘read’ to himself after we tuck him in at night. He also enjoys colouring and play dough and is trying to master using scissors.
He is getting better at playing with Piper now that she is more interactive, but has issues with being too rough (not unexpected for a 3 year old but difficult to manage). Sometimes he will play nicely for a while giving her toys and things, but often will push the boundaries by lying on top of her or trying to move her head around which means I have to be very vigilant when he is wanting to be involved with her. Rose is still his favourite playmate, though he does get a bit frustrated that she often won’t do what he tells her (boy, do I know how that feels…)
Sleep: bedtimes are much improved and he is no longer feeling the need to test our resolve. He’ll play quietly in his room for a while after we say good night and then go to sleep. I rarely hear him up past 8 anymore. He is still waking early but I think he was actually doing this for a long time and just lying in bed waiting for us to get up. Now that I’m up with Piper at 6, he will usually get up then too. so I have to make sure I open his door gate on the way past so he can come out if I am feeding her
He is still napping almost every day but we have moved the nap to after lunch which means he sleeps much longer and goes down much faster. If he’s tired earlier in the day he will sometimes go and quietly put himself to bed. Very rarely he will just play instead of sleeping at nap time, but I figure this is part of the transition to eventually having quiet time instead.
Eating: Good as always! We are making him try a little of everything on his plate now before he can have anything else, so he is making real progress in eating his veggies. He still loves fruit, yoghurt and, of course, ice cream. When John has an evening shift I will now eat dinner with Tom which means he is being exposed to a wider range of foods.
Potty: still days where we have a lot of accidents but he is completely dry most days now and has even managed a few number twos in the potty. He still wears a nappy for naps and bedtime, though is dry for naps at nursery where he will only sleep an hour instead of two. He’ll have the odd day now when he will just take himself to the potty without me reminding him.