Doesn’t it seem like yesterday that I was still pregnant with Luke and writing pregnancy updates? How did 3 years go by?! Luke has grown into such a personality. He is equally sweet and sassy, loving and fiesty. He brings so much fun and happiness to our family.
I just read through his 2 year update and 2 1/2 year update, and I have to say that I’m grateful I have this blog to help me remember the details. Life goes by so quickly, it’s easy to forget the little things about each phase of my children’s lives. Let’s get to Luke’s 3 year old update!
A month or so ago, Luke was crawling out of his crib at will. He’d startle me by waking up from his nap and just coming down stairs. I’d be working on something and he’d show up at my feet, smiling a mischievous little smile. The good news was that even with his new-found freedom, he still slept well. He continued to sleep about 11 hours through the night and 2-3 hour naps. After a few hard falls, though, we decided to transform his crib into a toddler bed. He used the same crib as Meghan, and it easily became a toddler bed by taking the front rail off. He loves his “big boy bed.” At some point we’ll get him into a regular bed as he’s a big toddler to be in the tiny bed and I think he’d like a little more space.
We potty trained Luke at 2 1/2 and it was a breeze. Meghan was much harder to potty train, so there goes the “boys are harder than girls” theory. I guess it just depends on the individual child. It was definitely a lot of work the first few weeks, but I was so glad to have it behind us once we got it done. I didn’t follow one particular method, but kind of combined everything I’d read into one.
First, I started with the bare bottom approach. No underwear or pants for the first few days. I had a portable potty chair that was near us at all times. Whenever Luke started to go, I rushed him to the chair and praised him if he got anything in the toilet. He turned out to be a kid who could hold in a LOT of pee, so at times I had him just sit on the potty chair and watch a show if it’d been a long time in between going. I just wanted him to get the feeling of going on the toilet. I did NOT reward him for just sitting on the toilet, but I DID reward him when he actually went to the bathroom on the toilet. His reward was a few pieces of candy (a naturally colored M&M type candy). For Meghan I used stickers, so maybe that’s why it was easier with Luke?! A higher motivation prize! Oh, how things can change. I never would have given Meghan CANDY for potty training. Ha!
After the first few days I put underwear on him, and then eventually we went back to pants. The first week we barely left the house. (Torture!) After a few weeks, he got the hang of it and has been good to go ever since. He initiated wearing underwear for nap time, so now he is day-sleep trained as well. He does occasionally have an accident, but usually he wakes up and comes out yelling, “I have to go to the bathroom!” He’s starting to train himself to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, too. He comes into our room and tells us he has to go, so one of us brings him to use the toilet and then right back to bed. He still wears a pull up at night, though.
It’s funny, Meghan didn’t leave her room without a parent until she was five. She’d yell to us if she needed something, but would never just wake up and leave her room. Never, ever would she just come into our room in the middle of the night. I love to see personality differences between the two.
While Luke goes through phases of eating more or less at times, overall he’s a good eater. I think every toddler goes through a picky eating stage to some extent. Meghan’s was much, much more drastic than Luke’s. She basically stopped eating all vegetables at 2 1/2. When I give Luke his plate with dinner, he’ll often go straight to the vegetables first. His favorites are bell peppers, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower. He loves all fruit and will eat just about any kind of fruit I give him. He doesn’t love chicken but he’ll eat it. He loves steak. He loves guacamole and hummus and will dip carrot sticks or chips in either. He will eat most beans, but doesn’t like rice, pasta, or pizza (<—-weird!)
He seems to have totally outgrown all of his food sensitivities. There’s hope for all you mamas dealing with MSPI and other food intolerances. He loves yogurt and is starting to like cheese. I still try to limit his dairy somewhat, simply because I don’t think a lot of dairy is good for anyone. He’d eat plain yogurt for just about every meal though, if I’d let him. Like Meghan, Luke doesn’t like mixed-up type meals. You know, casseroles, one-pot meals, soups….all the easy stuff I’d love him to like! I don’t know why, but both of my kids prefer their food separated and without sauce.
I’m going to write a whole post on extended breastfeeding, but I’ll give you a quick update. Luke has his last nursing session on Wednesday, the day before his 3rd birthday. We told him that “the milk would be all gone” when he turned 3. This was hard for both of us. He really wanted to keep breastfeeding, but I just knew it was time to stop. The first day without it was rough and there were tears, but I’m trying not to focus on Luke’s sadness. Instead I’m thinking about how lucky he is to have 3 years of breastfeeding. This sadness won’t last too long. I hope!
Growth and Development
Luke is still at the top of the growth chart. Most people who see him assume he’s older than he is. He’s still very active; he loves to run and jump and play hard. Developmentally, he is right on track. He talks well and can do all the things physically a young 3 year old should be able to do.
One area of development I’ve noticed really blossoming lately is his social development. Whenever I take him to the YMCA, after my workout I’ll bring him to the “Tunnel Room” and “Mat Room”–two play areas our Y has. He will walk up to other kids and say, “What’s your name?” and ask them to play with him. It’s adorable. He hasn’t started school yet, but to me this is a sign that he’s ready to be around other kids in school. The preschool where Meghan went and where I work 2 days a week is unfortunately full, so he won’t be starting until the fall. I think I need to make sure he has plenty of play dates so he can play with friends often!
This is probably more details than most of you are interested in, but I love having all of this on record. For those of you who did read it all, I hope you enjoyed this little progress report! I’m excited to see how Luke continues to grow and develop in the coming year. I feel so blessed to be his mom and I thank God for entrusting me with this child everyday.