My sweet, sweet boy is almost three. How on Earth this happened so quickly, I have no idea. A few things I want to remember:
The terrible two’s really do exist (or maybe I want to forget this one..who knows..). Lucas is fiery and wears every emotion on his sleeve. He has taken to screaming at Ivan and I quite ferrociously when things don’t go his way. I have quickly learned to stay calm when these screaming fits happen and sit him in a time out. He is fully capable of understanding why he is in time out and we talk about what he did wrong when he’s allowed to get up. Then we exchange a hug and kiss and all is well in the world. But seriously, it’s kind of mind blowing how much we are able to communicate with Lucas.
Just how loving he is. Lucas has always been affectionate and continues to dish out kisses like nobodies business. The way he murmurs “okkkkkk mommyyyy” and “I loveeee youuuu” makes me melt into a mom puddle.
The wit on this boy! He is the ultimate ham and knows just how to bat those lashes or crack a joke to lighten the mood. His giggle could cure the worst case of the blues.
Solo play. This month he has taken to playing on his own for long periods of time which he has never done before. He sits in his room and creates scenarios with his Ninja Turtles – voices and all. He’s becoming so independent and it terrifies me yet makes me so incredibly proud.
He has been an incredibly picky eater for a while now. These days he’s all about hot dogs and chicken nuggets. I have successfully been able to trick into thinking ALL chicken is “nuggets” and am constantly cooking different varieties of chicken to make up for the lack of diversity in his palette. Oh, carrots and corn. These are his two most requested sides.
Lucas can count to ten in english and five in spanish. He also sings a pretty killer off key rendition of the ABC’S. Some other important stuff he has memorized? Every single character of the Ninja Turtles.
In short, two has been a crazy, kiss filled, epic tantrum, milestone filled year. Lucas León you are my star. I look forward to every year with you.
You can see more of Lucas’s look this week over on babiekins! The top photo is a new favorite of mine.
Sunday August 10th was glorious. Lucas’s baptism. Before heading to Church, Ivan, Lucas and I (and the entire Ninja Turtle squad) took a stroll through Central Park. The weather was perfect. Everything was perfect. Including Lucas’s cream linen suit – a gift from his amazing Madrina (Godmother). The only mistake we made was passing a park full of kids. Lucas promptly proclaimed he wanted to go down the slide and well, linen and slides just don’t mix. After we were able to coax him away (no easy feat FYI) we walked down Central Park West. I can’t explain the feeling of approaching the Church and seeing so many familiar, beautiful faces. Friends and family, all who love our little guy to pieces. They were all there to celebrate this special day and it was the best gift a mama could receive. To know you have a village who will always be there for your child. The ceremony only had one minor hiccup. Lucas insisted on playing with his Ninja Turtles and I might have broken out into a small sweat trying to get him to sit down. Turtles aside, Lucas was an absolute gem with the Priest and was extremely calm during the act of Baptism. After the ceremony we all headed back to our apartment for good food, wine, and a celebration cake with sparklers, of course. We love you Lucas León. May you have a beautiful journey learning about your faith and yourself. Mami and Papi will be by your side always and forever, helping to guide you in any way we can.
Toddler habits. I can’t keep up. For months we have been blessed with a kid who loves bath time. I’d go as far to say it was an obsession. As soon we would get home Lucas would be running to collect toys, throw them in the empty tub, and request “water, mama!”. Suddenly bath time is for the birds. From one day to the next, getting the kid clean has become a struggle. I have to fight back my own tears as I try and clean a very dirty toddler who is kicking and screaming in two minutes or less. As I continue to try and understand what on earth is happening, Lucas has moved on.
Brushing his teeth is his new favorite thing. Kind of amazing. He has his routine down pact and I love watching how he interacts and copies us. There’s all sorts of fun things for Lucas to do while brushing his teeth. He has mastered the perfect amount of tooth paste to put on his brush. He knows that he needs to clean ALL his teeth (even the pesky ones in the back). He spits out the extra paste. And the cutest part of all – when he cups his tiny hands under the water and gently brings them back to his mouth to gargle about two drops of water. Cutest. Thing. Ever.
As I work on getting bath time fun again, I’m digging this new routine and his fresh, strawberry breath.
My better half lovingly dubbed Lucas his monkey when he was born and the monicker kind of just stuck around. When one of us is home alone with the boy the back and forth texts read something like this: “how’s the monkey?”“what’s the monkey up to?”. Any who I find his nickname suits him and he loves his knit monkey hat so there’s that. Now an update.
The phrase “no way, man!” has made its way into Lucas’s vocabulary. I don’t know where he learned it but it’s hilarious and I love it.
When we arrive at his school he willingly hands over his pacifier to the teacher and doesn’t ask for it all throughout the day. We are thinking of going cold turkey next week. Positive pacifier vibes please!
We enjoy going over all our animals accompanied by some pretty awesome roars and meows. Our favorite is the monkey which apparently is the funniest of all the animals and also has the best dance moves.
He is drinking milk from a cup at school. No bottle! We are working on his night time bottle but soon we will be home free.
I love you’s are becoming more frequent and my mama heart is filled to capacity. “I yuh youuu mama.” Yep. The best.
We “cheers” everything. Sippy cups. Bottles. Glasses. Every beverage break is a celebration.
There’s a new building being constructed up the block from our apartment and a make shift side walk has been put up. There are plastic windows dotted along the wood walls where you can peek in and see all the demolition. Every day we have to stop at every window and with each peek Lucas says “wowwwww” with big saucer eyes. Such a boy this one!
Two is such a great age! Every day is an adventure with the kid.
We have technically started potty training but there hasn’t been much progress. We bought the pull-ups, have the potty (well I should hope so, right?), and have big boy undies (sniff sniff). Even armed with all the necessities, Lucas isn’t having it. “No way, man” he says while shaking his head when I ask him to join me in the bathroom. That thumbs up he’s giving in the photo above? Don’t believe that cute mug for a second. He’s just working on his acting skills ;)This weekend I’m planning on creating a potty chart. I’m headed to the store to pick up new supplies: poster board, stickers, and his favorite lollipops. We haven’t accomplished much else besides looking extra cute. I’m hoping for a new and improved update to share with you in the coming weeks. In the mean time, if any of my fellow mamas have any tricks or tips I’d love to hear them!
So here we are. Two weeks into Nursery school and I couldn’t be more proud of my boy. There have a been a few emotional mornings (on both our ends) but my fellow mama amigas assure me this is par for the course. Just yesterday as we walked into school, he let go of my hand and ran into his classroom yelling “Mama, I go play!”. Everyday when I pick him up I’m greeted with the biggest hug and a new work of art to hang on the fridge. I’m also starting to acquire the most amazing collection of toddler masterpieces that I’m certain will be worth big bucks some day. Something I wasn’t expecting at all? Bobo (aka pacifier) weening. Well, not this fast. Each day he hands me or his teacher his bobo and he has been spending the entire day without it. He doesn’t even ask for it before nap time. A bloody miracle. The moment we leave school he asks me for it in his most pitiful voice accompanied by puppy dog eyes and I hand it over. Baby steps I keep telling myself. As much as I wanted to get rid of the dreaded pacifier, it honestly leaves me feeling a bit weepy knowing just how quickly he is progressing. It’s ahhhmazing and all sorts of sad at the same time. Mama issues I suppose.
Overall the kid is rocking it. Truly, he never ceases to amaze me. I love you my big boy!
For the past few months I could sense a shift in Lucas’s behavior and needs. I felt it in my heart that it was time for him to interact more with children his age. I knew he was ready and as much as it killed me (no, really) to realize just how fast he was growing, I was certain he would thrive in a new environment. Thus began our search.
Now for all my NYC mamas (and really – mamas everywhere), I don’t know how you do it. Besides the obvious emotions of not wanting to let my baby go, I had major sticker shock. $20-30k a year for my two year old? Call me naive but I had NO idea that I was supposed to be paying the cost of a college tuition for my toddler. I want the very best for lucas, there’s no doubt about that. But there had to be an alternative. I felt stuck. Frustrated. So because I can’t afford the going rate in my neighborhood for a preschool education did that mean I would have to sacrifice quality teachers? A clean, safe environment where I would feel confident leaving my son? It just didn’t seem fair. This fueled my fire and resulted in hours upon hours (ok, weeks) of research and visiting several day care and nursery programs in our area.
We finally decided on a program that we loved and could afford. Before we made our final, executive decision, I took Lucas with me to visit. The first time we explored the school and I got to speak one on one with his future teacher. She made me feel at ease and Lucas loved her. On the second visit Lucas was able to participate in the classroom and joined in on dance time. He was in heaven! I mean, the kid loved it. Not that I’m entirely surprised. Lucas is extremely social and a total people person (I take full credit for that one ;). When it was time to leave homeboy threw an epic tantrum. His teacher was so understanding and reassured me that it was fine, and well, at least he didn’t want to go! His new teachers are also going to assist in potty training and weaning him off the pacifier. What more could I ask for? Truly!
So this morning we arrived at 8:50am. I switched him out of his wet snow boots, put on his sneakers, and headed to his new cubby. As I was hanging up his coat he ran into his classroom and didn’t look back for me. My heart sank. I followed him in and actually yelled “Lucas! BYE!” He looked back and gave me a weak “bye”. Crushed. I was crushed. I left to drown my sorrows at a nearby Starbucks and returned at 11:30, 1/2 hour before pickup, and planted myself in front of the observation window. He was eating lunch family style with his classmates. He looked so darn happy you would have thought he was having brunch in Disney World. He was SO happy. He was beaming. I felt a sense of relief wash over me.
When I walked into the classroom to pick him up he shouted “mama!” and proceeded to give me a tour of the play kitchen and all the yummy wooden produce. I’m feeling pretty confident about the rest of the week. On Thursday he has a Valentine’s Day party and I volunteered to bring the apple juice. We’re only one day in but so far Lucas and I are loving this nursery school thing.
Today we had a date with my mama, pretty much the greatest lady of all time, in case you were wondering. We drove out to Jersey to shop for new coats and of course I took the opportunity to ogle at some house wares. There are some big decisions to be made such a white or black pendant lamp for our entry. I know. Crucial. We also got to check out some big boy beds. Lucas hopped from bed to bed, tucking himself into the sheets. I think he is ready. I on the other hand, am not. I’d love to know when any of you started the transition from crib to bed. I’m a nervous wreck! Do your kiddos get up in the middle of the night and pour themselves a bowl of cereal? Do they turn on the play station? I keep having visions of him just strolling through the apartment getting into massive amounts of trouble. Any advice is much appreciated!
Also, that adorable boy in the pictures was on turbo and thought it would be great fun to hide under every. single. clothing rack. I’m currently nursing a big cup of snapple and ice (my vice..I know..pretty lame) and searching pinterest – my new nightly routine. Hope you all had an equally eventful Thursday.
beanie (thrifted) | denim shirt from baby gap (old) | tee c/o sweet luka mo | sweats c/o nununu
I was the mama who left everything to the last minute. This left me a frantic mess while planning Lucas’s party. Instead of boring you with the details of how I ran from store to store, almost having a birthday breakdown, I’ll tell you this. Friends, family, and lots of love – that’s all that matters. At the end of the day our loved ones made my Lucas’s 2nd birthday bash an amazing one.
On Thursday my sweet boy turned two years old. For weeks I have been an emotional wreck but as Ivan and I sat on the couch Wednesday evening blowing up balloons, it finally hit me. Two is going to be good.
When Lucas woke up he shouted from his crib, per usual..”mama! dada!”. Ivan and I jumped out of bed and rushed to our big boy, armed with smiles and the camera. We sang an off key version of happy birthday and watched him play with his balloons. Once he had enough and asked for his milk, daddy left for work and we got ready for the day. I have been wanting to take Lucas to the Children’s museum of Manhattan for some time and so I thought turning two was the perfect occasion. He had a blast exploring however spent a majority of his time in the big fire truck, passing out fireman hats to all the kids. Some things never change! We had pizza for lunch and headed home for a nap. That evening a few friends and family came over for wine and cupcakes. It really was the perfect day for my big boy.
It’s only been a few days since the big two but I swear I can already see a transformation in Lucas. He’s talking more and his behavior just seems more indicative of a boy, not a baby. My favorites have to be when I say something to him and he responds “oh, okay” as well as “tank ooo so much mama”. I mean, melt my heart why don’t ya! Turning two makes for a well mannered boy? I’ll take it. I’m already loving everything about this age and don’t ask me how it’s possible, but my heart is filled with a never ending love that seems to grow every day.
Lucas Leon, you are loved. So loved. Happy 2nd birthday my beautiful boy!