Wednesday, January 5, 2011

We've come a long way, baby!

Joseph is two years old! It is hard for me to believe that he is only two, as it feels like a lot has happened since he was born.

He is a handsome and engaging little boy. He has two beautiful dimples, adorable blue eyes and an infectious smile. He loves people, especially his family, and upon meeting someone will ask them to "come, play" and lead them by the hand to one of his toys. He is very silly, and likes to 'give speeches' and tell 'jokes'. He still doesn't talk very well. His articulation leaves much to be desired. I am often the only one who can understand him, and he only speaks in two to three word phrases. However, from time to time, he will stand in front of you and hold court, saying all sorts of nonsense syllables and sounds. He usually finishes with a big, proud smile, but sometimes, he will say "ha ha ha" in a goofy, grumbly voice to indicate that he just told a joke.

He is all boy. His favorite toys are cars and trains. If he doesn't have a train handy, he will line up cars, shoes, boxes of toys, books, or whatever he can find and push them along like a train. I took a video of him doing this recently, and will post it as soon as I upload it. He also loves all things football. He has two football shirts and a pair of football pajamas and asks to wear them everytime he is getting dressed.

He loves to watch TV. His favorite shows are Super Why and Thomas & Friends. He loves all things Thomas. He knows the names of all the trains, and will name each one when we read his Thomas books. His favorite train is Toby.

He knows all his colors and can almost count to ten. He counts "one, two, three, four, five, eight, nine, ten" and then cheers for himself. It is adorable.

Some of his favorite activities, other than watching TV and playing with trains, include having books read to him, going outside, and calling his Gaa on the phone. His favorite books are, of course, Thomas books and ones about trains, but he also loves Fall is not Easy, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, Go Dog Go, and Mr. Brown can Moo. As for calling Gaa on the phone, he will bring me my phone and say, "Call, Gaa".

He can sing "Happy Birthday to You" in its entirety, though he rarely will for anyone other than me. He will sing it to himself, calling himself Go Go (Joe Joe). However, the other day at my mom's house, he called himself Jomomabo, which is totally awesome. Jomomabo is a nickname my sister gave my older brother that we have than carried on with Joe.

Even though he loves people, and will ask others to 'come, play', he is also very content to play by himself. This has been a huge blessing as his older sister wants constant attention and thinks she needs an adult playmate for every activity.

Joseph adores his big sister, and will pretty much do whatever she tells him to. Unfortunately, she doesn't always have patience for him and can get frustrated with him if he doesn't do things her way. Just recently, they have been playing together nicely, but it has been a lot of work to get us to this place. Joe has conflicting emotions about his little sister. Sometimes, he seems to be interested in her, and wants to hug her and kiss her and stroke her hair, and other times, without rhyme or reason, he will act very aggressively towards her, hitting her, pulling on her hair or limbs, or throwing things at her. We are constantly reminding him to 'be nice to the baby'. He calls Isla, "Ya-Ya" and Lucia "Yu-Ah".

He still sucks his fingers, but he no longer rubs his sleeve under his nose. Instead, he now either rubs his earlobe or his belly button. I don't get the belly-button thing at all, and it really weirds Mike out. Mike has a very sensitive belly button and can't stand having it touched. As a result, watching his son walk around rubbing his belly button makes Mike really nervous.

We are working on potty training, but still have a ways to go. Joe does pee in the potty when you take him (and then claps for himself and demands his candy). He has been doing this since he was 20 months old. However, he absolutely, positively and completely refuses to poop in the potty. He also does not stay dry between trips. We got him some Thomas underpants for his birthday. A few days later, he begged me to put them on him, and I happily obliged. One hour and two accidents later, I put him back in diapers, and we haven't revisited the underwear again. I have a feeling that once I get the time to devote to solely him, training him to stay dry will not be hard. However, I am a little busy nursing a baby every two hours right now, so that will have to wait.

He can feed himself with a spoon and a fork and drink from a cup. He still throws food on the floor and purposely spills his drinks, but not as often. His diet is extremely limited, consisting mostly of cereal, yogurt, fruit, peanut butter and jelly and cheese. I think the only vegetables he eats are sauteed carrots and sweet potato fries. He has on occasion eaten hot dogs and breaded chicken, but does not do so with any regularity. He loves pancaked and waffles. Most days, he only eats two meals a day. I give him cereal every morning and then offer him choices of foods he likes for lunch. However, for dinner, I only offer him the food that the rest of us are eating, and most of the time he refuses to eat.

He still does not dress or undress himself. He pulls his shirts over his head and puts his arms through. He zips up zippers and is starting to attempt, with much coaxing, to pull his pants up on his own. He probably could dress himself, but unfortunately, I am usually getting him dressed and undressed in a hurry, and don't have the time to coax him through the step of doing these activities for himself.

As far as his behavior goes, Joe is a pretty good kid. He screams and cries and tests his limits, just like any kid, but he seems to respond to discipline pretty well, at least for now. The other day, he wanted a fruit cup at lunch. I gave it to him with a spoon, and he threw the spoon on the floor. I took the fruit cup away and told him he had to eat it with the spoon. This whole scenario repeated itself again, but on his third try, Joe took the spoon and happily ate the entire fruit cup with the spoon. Since then, he has had fruit cups twice more, and ate them with a spoon without complaint. Most of the time, I can get him to do whatever I need him to. I very rarely have the feeling with him that I have no idea how to handle his behavior.

I was talking to my mom the other day, and she said that if she had to describe Isla in one word, it would be 'joy' and if she had to describe Joe in one word, it would be 'love'. I think that is the perfect description. Joe is love. He loves his sister and his mommy and daddy and his grandparents and his aunts and uncles so much. He is always happy to see them and always willing to give a hug and a kiss. He is a blessing, and we thank God for him.


Anonymous said...

What a nice post! You should save this and share it with Joe when he's an adult. Read it to him on his wedding day. Except maybe for the potty training part! LOL! :) Very sweet. love, Courtney

Diane said...

Mary, this is totally delightful - like you, like Joe! I love your mother's description of your two elder children - perfect. I adore Joe - I find him whimsical, determined and quite dear! Thank you so much for taking time in your busy life to write this - I agree with Courtney - save this one! - Love, Aunt Diane/Auntie Di

Julia said...


I love reading all about your beautiful children! You are a wonderful mom, and it's reflected in your children.