Maybe I should just go ahead and shoot for only one blog a month because that's apparently all I'm going to manage....
December seemed to move along quickly probably because Thanksgiving was so late this year...? I don't know. We got a tree, decorated, shopped and it was Christmas before we knew it.
and this is how it goes most of the time - Little Little with his hand in my hair and me trying to show Big Little that he still matters to me with my hand in his hair - wouldn't trade for anything
William was WAY excited about Christmas and Santa this year. We decided against using Santa as a tool to get good behavior - rather focus on that gifts are given because people love you and want to give presents instead of based on whether you are good and bad. He's been saying that he's "a bad boy" when he misbehaves, doesn't listen, gets reprimanded even in a small way - so we didn't want to make that worse. I've been trying to emphasize that he's not a bad boy, he just needs to listen, not hit, etc. It's not sticking yet though. I might need to google a different approach, I really don't want him internalizing that he's a bad boy. He's a great boy with a lot to learn and grow is all. So yeah. Santa wasn't emphasized but he was excited.
here's another real moment - toys, paci, walter, airplane, pizza, chocolate milk. Simultaneously.
Because we weren't emphasizing Santa, we went ahead and put gifts under the tree. This created some discussions about not opening presents, but mostly, they were both really good about it. I took William to pick out a gift for Patrick and with about 45 minutes of gentle leading and constant discussion that he was not buying himself a gift, he landed on a barking/walking puppy Patrick had been really interested in. It was really fun to watch him shop for his brother and begin to understand the process. That it's not all about him, etc etc.
Patrick is still very serious but is saying the funniest things all the time. And he's started saying his name. William is still "brother" unless prompted to say his real name and it's just too cute to correct most of the time. I love it. "Brodder" So cute. He pretty much just orders us around and gives us commentary on everything that is happening- but it's so fun to listen. He's learning so much. Favorites are still trains and trucks. Which is good, because we have plenty to go around.
Literally, the best we could get.... best laid plans
We went to Cleveland for Christmas the weekend before the holiday and had a big time despite the 24 hour a day rain. Boo. The boys watched movies, played trains, rollercoasters, and enjoyed the time with their cousins on Sunday. It was nice to get to spend the time with my brother and littlest sister. Miss when all five of us would be home and we'd drink, laugh, and be ridiculous. One day I hope. It was much too quick of a trip and we drove home in what seemed like a monsoon.
The next couple days were filled with me home with William (no school) and him asking what was our next activity. Thank you school for that one. I could barely keep him occupied. Went and bought a gingerbread house for him to do with Aunt Tasha, while I finished up some last minute shopping. Tuesday we went to see Santa - and he knew precisely what he wanted. Laser focus. He wanted a stick with a hook on the top and a bow and arrow. God help us. Sam made an emergency trip after Christmas Eve church and family dinner and lucked out at Kmart. We definitely didn't want to ruin the magic of Santa at the tender age of four just because he kept changing his mind!
We stayed up late working as Santa on their room - total overhaul while they slept pretty soundly together in our bed. I have to say, I might love this room more than the nursery. It's a very loose circus theme and I love it. I'm so pleased that all the elements came together and the boys loved it the next morning. And then immediately wanted to open presents. Laser focus again. LOL We didn't get them an overwhelming amount of presents and that helped with everything. I think William was most excited about his "soft pants"!! hahaha And Patrick loved the big semi car carrier truck thing. Though, with every toy their were given, they basically switched. Patrick played with "William's gifts" and vice versa. A couple disagreements over sharing because of it, but for the most part, they are playing nice.
We had to make a new rule about eating. We'd gotten lazy, probably out of exhaustion, and had been letting them eat (a lot) in the living room, so when we would actually have real dinner at the table, it was a nightmare. So now - all meals and snacks are at the dining room table. This is not without loud and persistent protest, but we are hoping it doesn't last long and produces some really great table manners. Jury is still out on this one - they both cried for nearly thirty minutes last night - but then settled and ate their grown up meal of "bous cous", chicken, and broccoli pretty well.
I am in awe of what big boys they are becoming and every funny new thing they say. William has gotten really good and really enjoys telling stories. It's so fun to hear what his mind can imagine. It takes him a little bit to get it out of his mouth, he talks so fast and trips himself of, but it's nothing short of wonderful. They both still really enjoy chasing each other with cars - very dangerous when it comes to our toes - but they are playing really well together most of the time. Patrick hates to change out of his clothes but has started telling us which jamas he wants. Last night he wanted guitars, the night before it was Christmas. It's fun. And William is still very particular about what he wears as well. Nothing with a tag and he practically refuses to wear jeans. (I think it's because they are hard for him to fasten to go potty...prefers elastic/slip on waists for sure)
They are still loving the bunk beds, though sometimes they love them a little too much. LOL Some nights they talk to each other kinda late, others one will cry and wake the other, which makes the other cry and then it's just downhill. They've both started using the word "scary" to describe anything dark, and William basically refuses to open his own door to go potty in the middle of the night - preferring to holler at us to come do it for him. That's (not) awesome. Maybe we should replace the glass doorknob, but he has no problem using it during the day. He probably just wants reassurance that we are still there. You know how the night time can be scary.... sweet baby.