Random cute pic of Julius
* We had another fun Daddy’s Day Off this week with a trip to the zoo in the morning followed by lunch at our favorite local health food market. We love when Mike has the day off but I always want to cram SO MUCH in – fun stuff, grocery shopping that I hate doing alone, etc. – the days are kind of hectic too.
* The favored strategy for zoo outings now is baby in the Ergo (unlike the wrap it has a cover to shade his head from the sun) and Miles in/out of the umbrella stroller. Miles likes to literally RUN through the zoo until he is tired and then he wants to sit in the stroller for a bit. A double stroller would be a total nightmare as I often have to move swiftly through crowds when I’m there alone with him. Once, he took off through a particularly crowded part of the aquarium and I had to just ditch the umbrella stroller and run like mad to catch him. Some nice man brought me my stroller once I had apprehended the boy. Despite how crazy that sounds, I love going to the zoo. We get out, Miles burns off some steam, and it’s far less boring for me than the playground.
* I’ve had so many ups and downs in the past week or so. Days when I feel beaten down and overwhelmed, days when I feel on top of the world. This is a time of BIG everything with Miles, big emotions, big tantrums, big developmental leaps, big time cuteness. And I am along for the ride. Sometimes I feel like all I do all day is damage control. Sometimes I am just so frazzled and embarrass myself at a friend’s daughter’s birthday party (hi Sarah!) by losing my cool over totally typical toddler behavior. Other times I feel like a rock star because I handled every tantrum like a pro and warded off another dozen meltdowns and at the end of the day my little boy says, smiling, “love you.”
* All the sketchy/nonexistent naps and frustrating behavior lately is, I’m 100% sure, related to Miles is having a big leap in speech. He’s picking up words at an astounding pace in the last week and – am I dreaming? – actually started saying PLEASE when he asks for milk! He’s putting together a lot more two- and even three-word phrases. It’s very apparent that he’s also understanding a whole lot more of what we’re saying to him and each other (break out the swear jar). Using language is empowering and I feel like he has had a boost in self-confidence as he’s been better able to express himself. And I have had an easier time handling his big emotions and tantrums since I can do more verbally to explain the rules and talk him through things.
* Meanwhile, little Julius is doing his baby thing. He clearly has a different personality from Miles already. Where Miles was curious about the world around him and less interested in YOU, Julius is the kind of baby who just wants to stare into your eyes all day. He does not like to be alone and will get upset when no one is in his line of vision, but once you come back he breaks out into huge smiles again. He is still not always the greatest sleeper – like Miles he just needs a lot of help in that department – but in general has a sunny, social personality.
* Sometimes I fear that Julius will get overlooked or receive less attention because Miles is just SO demanding and challenging to parent. Other times I fear that Miles will feel like he is being unfavorably compared to his more cheerful, outgoing little brother. I know this sort of thing is what most parents of more-than-one think about and it just shows that I love them both. But, y’know. I’m never short on things to worry about!