Monday, March 23, 2009

Polite and sleepy

I have a final Openness to Life post brewing for Wednesday, but in the meantime...

I think I have mentioned that Olivia is a very verbal kid. My Dad was saying the other day that he can't remember ever meeting a 16-month-old who could string four words together to make a sentence with as much ease as Olivia does. He asked if we quiz her at home. We don't. We do pretty much what every other parent does. We talk to her constantly, explaining the world around us as we go. And she just picks up on stuff. What can I say? She's very sharp, and I can say that without bragging because she doesn't get it from us. The flip side of that coin is that we have to be VERY careful about what we say around her.

Anyway, Olivia has picked up on the "polite words". "Please" is a word that she uses with great frequency, and she's starting to use it for almost every request. "Cackers, pease." "Shoes, pease." And when she is finished eating and wants out of her chair..."Finis, pease." (We're very particular about the difference between "done" and "finished".) Occasionally, this word is used to beg, as if saying the word over and over and over will get a preferred response out of us. But most of the time, it's delightful to hear her ask for something politely.

We're working on "Thank You" and "You're Welcome". She gets them a little confused. For example, when I give her something she has asked for, I ask her, "Can you say Thank You to Mommy?" She often responds with "Welcome!" On the other hand, I let her carry the bucket-o-flowers this morning (we have been working in the yard), and she said "Mommy, thank-you, welcome!" She's sorting it out.

The sleep weirdness, it is back! Olivia spent Friday night at Grandpa & Grandma's house, and we picked her up late Saturday afternoon. Mom said she slept very well and napped a little. So we were expecting a tired, easy-to-put-to-bed toddler. Instead, I spent two and a half hours trying to get our obviously-exhausted child to settle down and go to sleep.

The crawling-out-of-the-crib problem has become worse. When awake, she has NO PROBLEM crawling out and running into the living room. She did it no less than a dozen times on Saturday night. I finally ended up laying with her on her big mattress for twenty minutes until she fell asleep (SOUND asleep...we had tried this trick before). I don't know if she was just too overtired or if she had some sort of anxiety about going to sleep and waking up in a different place since we'd left her at Grandma's the night before. But it was TOUGH.

Naps have become a difficulty as well. She WILL NOT stay in her crib if put down awake. I have to rock her and restrain her until she falls asleep and then put her in her crib. This actually works, and most of the time she ends up laying her head on my shoulder and singing herself to sleep. It's a little weird since she has NEVER been one to easily be rocked to sleep...not even when she was an infant. But it works for her now, and it's kind of sweet to hold my sleepy little girl while she settles in for a nap.

On the other hand, this could become a problem if she still requires rocking for naps when baby #2 comes.

We are back to seriously considering the switch to her big bed. I am 100% serious when I say that no crib contains her. They are barely even an obstacle. She stays in her crib if she feels like it, and only then (a change even from last week's status...she's over the whole bars-provide-boundaries issue). So how is that different from a big bed? We're going to have to deal with it sooner, rather than later, I'm afraid.

I'm going to use the rest of naptime to finish splitting and moving my Irises. It is going to rain tomorrow, and Spring always rushes on me faster than I'm ready. I love our landscaping projects (and they are getting easier to accomplish now that Olivia can be occupied by "helping"), but there are always tiny windows of time when I can get things done before the weather has turned too warm or the plants have already started to bloom. Must keep moving.


Stephanie said...

You're right - if you're already dealing with the "stay in your bed" issue what's the difference in a big bed? If you decide you are not ready for that, they do make crib tents - I've known more than one person to use them, and they really work. But you may decide it's not worth it, and just move her up. Either way, good luck with naps. Isn't it funny how just when you think you've got a handle on the sleep thing, it changes? That's how it's always been for us, too.

Go Pumas! said...

Even though we are particular about the difference between "finished" and "done" ("I'm finished. I'm not a loaf of baking bread"), you can see we still have work to do on "laying" and "lying." I get sloppy on that one myself. Alas.

Michelle said...

Love your blog and read it daily. Usually just lurk LOL, but tonight I actually felt compelled to comment. We used the crib tent as did my sister-in-law and I think it was the BEST thing ever invented. Check it out on Amazon and read the reviews. If you want more details, e-mail me.
Good luck!!