Wednesday, October 9

Milo is three and a half

My first child is three and a half. I actually think he's been three for about forever, and I'm a little surprised he isn't closer to four. There is so much to say about Milo. The ups, the downs, the ins and outs. He is a complicated, simple kid. Let me see if I can begin to tell you about him. (Bear with me; this is gonna be a long one. I don't give Milo nearly enough blog space these days, and he deserves a full update.)

He's so kind. Milo hugs Olive if she is upset about something. He brings her toys to try to make her feel better. He apologizes to me immediately if he accidentally steps on my foot or something. "Oh, sorry, Mommy," he'll say, patting me on the knee. He gives wonderful hugs and knows that hugs make people feel better. He freely gives compliments. Just the other day I heard Milo musing over how he and Daddy were boys, and Mommy and Olive were girls. Daddy said, "Mommy and Olive are cool girls." Milo replied, "Yep, Mommy and Olive are cool, PRETTY girls, Daddy."

He's so smart and so creative. Milo has a huge vocabulary and makes connections that seem to be beyond his years. We were eating a pizza, and half the slices were gone. He looked at the pizza there in the box, and said "That looks like a semi-circle." Why yes, yes it does. He loves books and remembers so much of what has been read to him. He enjoys easy-reader sort of nonfiction books, and he can tell you all sorts of things about penguin colonies, gazelles ("Kazelles," as he calls them), raccoons, badgers, and trains. Milo is getting better at writing. He can write the letter Q and probably a few others. He can control his pencil enough to make a decent circle. He is getting better with scissors. I can see how his interest in drawing has changed over the last few months—he is attempting to color inside/near the lines of coloring books, and his art is looking more like something recognizable and less like scribbles (yet he still rarely chooses to color outside of the art projects at daycare).

Milo loves to make jokes. Like any kid his age, he is trying to figure out humor and how to make people laugh. He'll say something unexpected just to see if it makes us laugh. If I were to say something like "Who wants pizza?" Milo might say, "Who wants . . ." then he pauses and looks around. "Trees!" he exclaims triumphantly.

Half the time (or more than half, if I'm being honest) Milo drives me completely bonkers. He throws fits over Every. Little. Thing. And usually he changes his mind at some point during the fit to take an opposite position. For instance, the other day, he wanted cereal with milk for breakfast. Unfortunately, we had run out of milk. I offered him dry cereal, a bagel, oatmeal, a waffle, and even cinnamon toast. He cried on the stairs for about 15 minutes, whining about how he only wanted cereal with milk, so he didn't want breakfast at all. Fine, we said. No breakfast. When we were all done eating and on our way upstairs to brush his teeth, he whined that he wanted to eat breakfast. We told him that he had missed breakfast and would have to eat at Ms. Kristin's house (where he is fed every day upon walking in the door). He screamed. "But I wanted to eat breakfast heeeeeere!" It goes on and on. The reasons change, but there is always something that is bringing him to the end of the world. Sometimes I just don't even know how to handle the fits. I feel like an awful mom when all I want to do is yell at him. And I do find myself raising my voice, and I hate it. I hate that he can bring me to that. "He's three, he's three, he's three," I have to remind myself.

I think three is a really tough age, because so much of the time, Milo can be so fun and so smart and so sweet. And occasionally even reasonable. He tricks me into thinking that he should be reasonable all the time, or even most of the time. And that simply isn't the case. And I find myself trying to reason with him and use logic. You may be surprised to find that it gets me absolutely nowhere. It's a phase, and blah-de-blah. I know that underneath all the crazy is a really sweet kid who craves attention from his mommy and daddy.

Milo has gained some large motor skills in the last few months. He can ride a bike with training wheels. When he started learning, he was pretty timid about going too fast or how to stop or slow down. But he has slowly gained confidence, and he tears around the cul-de-sac. He still can be very cautious on hills and if he feels out of control, he forgets how to brake and starts dragging his feet along the ground. But he improves every time he rides. He is a pretty fast runner. At least he looks fast to me (but I am only really comparing him to Olive, who is decidedly not fast, though adorable, when running). He also is pretty good at riding his scooter, another skill that he wasn't too confident at for quite awhile.

Milo is a cautious kid. He is leery of trying new things. He definitely does not like doing things that are hard for him or that he doesn't fully understand. He struggles to find bravery. Nothing makes me more proud of him than when I see him giving it his all and experimenting and trying something that I know is freaking him out.

Milo is a picky eater. He's still a breakfast eater--oatmeal, eggs, ham, waffles, bagels-without-cream-cheese, bacon, sausage, cereal, yogurt, granola--he'll gladly eat all of that. Dinner is a different story. Rarely does he eat more than a few bites of his dinner. One night he pretended he was the carrot monster and stuffed a bunch of carrots into his mouth, hardly even chewing before grabbing another. Andrew and I just sat there, holding our breath and hoping the carrot monster would stick around for awhile (spoiler alert: it didn't).

Speaking of pretending, he is way into that. He had a nice long phase where he'd pretend the Big Bad Bear was coming and we all needed to hide. That morphed into "Boulder Bear" where Andrew would drop pillows on Milo's head while he his under the covers. He runs from room to room and is "Super____(fill in the blank)." Super Milo, Super Robot, Super Train. He holds a doll while running and the doll is Super Baby. That was a good one. Olive got in on that action, grabbing her own doll and calling out "Soooper Baybeee" as she ran around.

Those two are great friends, except when they don't feel like being friendly. They laugh together, play games together, pretend together, run around together, read together. It's so cool to watch them. Sometimes Olive drives Milo crazy. He shouts at her, "Leave me alone, Olive!" But I am glad to see that he doesn't smack her or anything. Sometimes he doesn't know how rough his playing can be, but he doesn't intentionally try to hurt her.

Milo likes dancing, but he's not really into music. He is really into trains. Loves his train table, loves books about trains, loves Thomas (or the other inhabitants of Sodor. Gordon pulls the Express, you know.). He still enjoys a good machine or fire truck, though everything takes a backseat to trains.

I love seeing Milo's interests and personality continue to develop. I love hearing him recall a memory from something several months ago and knowing that his memory is increasing all the time. He is such fun to hang out with (tantrums exempted). I hope he knows how much I adore and love him. Milo, you have my heart forever.













1 comment:

Making Each Day Count! said...

Such a great update, he is quite the cool little man! I love the photos too, the jumping shot is amazing!!