Living life in the carpool lane..

Posts Tagged ‘toddler independence

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It comes with the age.  All M wants to do is do things herself.  She’s pretty adamant about it.

She insists on feeding herself now, which is a blessing and a curse.  It’s a blessing because it’s one less thing I have to take care of, but a curse because of the clean up.

She’s likes to brush her own teeth, comb her own hair, do her own morning routine.

God forbid, I try to help her.

It’s cute watching her try to exert her independence, but it is also a little heartbreaking.  For the past three years, I’ve been her source for everything.  She has been depending on me for so many things.  M showing me that she can do so many things by herself reminds me that she’s growing up and is no longer my little baby anymore.  I may be a bit over dramatic (I’ve been known for that) in thinking that she will soon no longer need me anymore.

It’s a rollercoaster of emotions.

Overall, I’m proud.  I’m a proud mama.  I know that I’ve taught her well enough to be comfortable in doing things on her own.

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We have two of those step stools that IKEA sells.

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M calls it her “little table.”

She’s always known that she can pick it up and put it down, but she’s always thought of it as another one of her toys.

A few weeks ago, the notion that these “little tables” are mere toys has changed for her.

I’m assuming that she’s observed us countless times picking it up and placing it against something in order for her to step up onto it and gain some height when she needs it.  She’s watched us taking it from the bathroom to wash her hands, to the kitchen to help me make pancakes.

A light bulb went off in her head.

She could do that too!

Oh boy, is it helpful and dangerous at the same time.

It’s helpful because she now realizes that she doesn’t need to climb her personal Everest that is the bed.  She now takes her little stool and uses it to climb into bed.  It’s dangerous when I wake up at 5am, forgetting it’s there and nearly breaking my neck just trying to go about my day.

It’s helpful because now I can ask her to carry it to the desired room when we need to do something.  It’s dangerous because she just does it on her own.  We’ll just see her carrying her little stool to wherever she needs to go with or without or permission or supervision. 

Hubby and I are on hyper alert whenever we see her taking her “little table” places.  We always have to make sure she’s not putting herself in danger or she isn’t doing anything mischevious.

Life with a toddler is definitely interesting. 
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M is finally at the age where she’s strong enough to open the refrigerator door by herself.

We tested this one day when she asked for milk.

We told her that the milk was in the refrigerator and that she should try to get it.  She happily ran/jumped/skipped/sang her way to the refrigerator door.  Lo and behold, she was able to open it, look for her sippy cup of milk, grab it, and close the door behind her.

The look of accomplishment on her face was priceless.  I wish I had a camera floating around ready to go at every moment to capture the priceless looks on her face.

Yes.  I cried.  I cried because she’s another step closer to independence. I cried because it’s another reminder of how she isn’t a baby anymore.  I cried because I was just as proud as she was that she did it all by herself.

It really is the little things, those little accomplishments, that make you appreciate how precious time is.  I almost don’t even want to blink because I don’t want to miss out on anything..
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M is great at entertaining herself.  I guess it comes with the territory of being the only child.  The older she gets the better she is at playing with her toys.  She makes little scenarios with her little figurines.  She plays games with her stuffed animals.  She can sit for over an hour doing whatever she can with her Play Doh.

It’s really cute watching her play so well.

It’s also very helpful that she can entertain herself.  It allows Hubby and I to have conversations again.  It allows Hubby and I to just sit down and enjoy each other’s company. 

The other day, Hubby and I were sitting around doing our own things, M was playing in the living room.  I was working on a craft project when out of the corner of my eye, I can see M just walking back and forth, dragging varous objects with her. 

Suddenly, the walking stopped and she got quiet.  We all know that a quiet child usually means trouble, so I immediately stopped what I was doing to see what was going on. 

Much to my surprise, was lying down in a little makeshift bed she created and was watching TV.  It was so cute, I had to take a picture..

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She took a Hubby’s pillow.  The “blanket” or “sleeping bag” is a Dora the Explorer play tent. 

She was so content in that bed she made that she stayed there for a good 15 minutes just watching TV. 

At least we know she can fend for herself in needed..

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This past weekend, I caught up on M’s laundry.

Usually, I try to do a load or two during the week, but that limits me to a load a day.  With the amount of clothes M goes through, it’s no wonder I found myself so far behind.

Luckily, I was able to catch up this weekend. 

I think a big reason why I was able to catch up was because M is starting to become a lot more independent and she’s also able to entertain herself a lot easier than before.

Granted, she still wanted me to be within eye sight, but it wasn’t bothersome. 

Sometimes, she’d just stand with me.  I’d pass her some items to throw into the dryer and she LOVED it.  She was my little helper and it was the cutest thing.

Sometimes, she just stayed in the living room while Hubby watched her.  She’d be scattering her toys, or watching TV, or both!

Other times, she would have her iPad with her.  She’d carry it to where I was and just sit in the hallway while I hung her clothes to dry.

Yes, I had THAT much laundry that I needed to do for her..

There were other domestic errands I was also able to do without much toddler distraction this weekend..

Its bittersweet.  She’s old enough that I can start to leave her to be while I pull more of my own weight around the apartment.  I’m happy that I can start feeling helpful again, but its sad that she isn’t my super dependent little baby anymore..

The family can start to have a little more routine now..


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