Where does time go? Matt’s Dad was so right when he told us..Don’t blink, they will be grown-up before you know it. Truer words have never been spoken. Every time I write an update on Sebastian, I look back through our old posts and can’t believe how quickly time goes by as a parent. It seems like I wrote his 5-month update and his year update yesterday. So glad we have been able to experience so much with him these last couple of years and while Sebastian won’t remember, we will and we are grateful for it. So excited for the rest of twos with him.
As some of you might remember, Sebastian spent a week at my parent’s house in Missouri. While he was gone, Matt and I had some time to relax and reflect. If you are able to swing that, I highly recommend giving the grandparents time with the little one(s). It’s such a special bond they create. Plus, you get some R&R!
This was one of the most asked questions of late when it comes to Sebastian. Around the time he turned one, I stumbled upon an article about potty training. Not sure why I even started thinking about it so early on, but I did and it put a little panic in my mind. It was the land of the great unknown. The whole concept of teaching a baby to use the restroom seemed near impossible at the time. Where to even begin? Don’t quote me, but it said around age 1.5 to introduce the potty to your baby and continue to talk about it till they eventually catch on. Obviously, that’s the short and skinny of the article, but the idea was to introduce them to it, get them familiar and be consistent about it. Basically the same for everything in life. So here’s what we did.
The beginning process
I bought him a mini potty on Amazon (somewhat of a waste of money, but I’ll discuss this later) and the Elmo P is for Potty book. When the package arrived, Matt and I were pretty excited when he would walk over and flush the potty. A big smile would come over his face as well followed by many more flushes. I think it also hit me that I was officially a parent that day. The day you get excited about a child’s potty, you’ve entered a new stage in your life. We introduced the potty to him, talked about the purpose of it and showed him how it worked.
Over the next six months, anytime Sebastian showed signs of using the restroom, Matt and I would pick him up and run him to the restroom, rip off his diaper and he’d typically use the potty correctly. After he’d flush the toilet, we’d have a dance party in the restroom.
When he turned two
After his second birthday, I wanted to start focusing on potty training. We loved diapers the first two years (Pampers were our FAVORITE), but we understood the environmental waste, cost, and hassle of diapers. It’s truly crazy the environmental footprint diapers have. In December, he moved off diapers and went to pull-ups for school while they helped with potty training. They have been great with accelerating the process. After school, we would have him run around without a diaper on to make it easier for when he needed to quickly hop up on the potty. We reminded him to use the restroom. We’d also take him to the bathroom and have him use the big toilet. This is when we decided to get rid of the small potty. He never really caught onto using the mini toilet. Plus he liked climbing up on the big potty to go. That is what he used at school anyway. Obviously, do your research, but I would skip the potty training chair and buy a step stool and toilet seat.
Where we are now
We let the school know that we were officially potty training and they let us know that he continued to have dry diapers till it was time to use the restroom. One day, they said it was time for big boy undies. Big news. Big day! We waited a few weeks because he was still having accidents in the house, but now he’s officially converted. He hasn’t had an accident in over a week. He also wakes up with dry diapers in the morning and for naps. Once we convert his bed, he’ll officially be moved off pull-ups. A huge milestone in his childhood and emotionally really difficult for me to experience.
Above, waiting to go to his speech therapist!
Sebastian has started to go to a speech therapist. Right now we’re struggling to find a time that works. It’s during his school day and makes it difficult to take him out of school 2x a week with the cost of NYC preschools. We’re working with the center right now to find something suitable. Looks like we will secure a spot in summer, but till then he’ll likely go once a week.
As far as his speech improvement, we’ve seen him excel a lot on his own, as well. He is completing his first full sentences. We haven’t done a lot to help in this area. That will be changing but I think he’s starting to learn more on his own and amongst his peers at school. We plan on continuing speech therapy until we feel confident that he’s at the right place with his development. You can read more about our speech assessment here.
Someone asked how we got him more interested in reading. I wouldn’t say reading is one of his favorite hobbies, but he’s slowly starting to read more and more. Matt and I are not avid (physical) book readers ( we both love Audible), so he doesn’t see us sitting around the house with a book open. I believe your children learn a lot from their parents and this is one area that our children will not learn from us.
Every night we try and read to Sebastian, but it’s just not something he loves to do. He likes it but doesn’t love it. We read to him 4-5 nights out of the week. We got him a little reading light that attaches to his crib so he will sometimes sit-up and read his books in bed before falling asleep. He always has a few books at the end of his crib to pull out when he wants.
As a parent, I feel so conflicted about this subject. There’s certainly a balance with screen time, but there is also a time that you have to use for your own sanity. Matt and I both keep each other accountable with screen time. You’ll see Sebastian with his iPad often on Instagram because it’s the only time he’s NOT moving. Sebastian does not slow down. He’s not a child to sit down and play with something for 5 minutes. He will sit down for 30 seconds and then he’s off.
We use the iPad for a time to calm him down or slow him down. If we need him to wait for breakfast to be made while in the kitchen, we’ll let him watch his shows while he waits. We don’t put a time limit, we just use our best judgment on when it’s necessary and when it’s not.
As far as what we let him watch, we took YouTube off his iPad several months ago. We saw him getting addicted to YouTube. It was frightening. He would throw HUGE fits when we’d take it away. This was a bad sign, so we decided to get rid of the temptation. He now has access to his Netflix account and the games we downloaded on his iPad.
A few months ago, I felt like our family meals were almost perfect for our schedule, but the last few weeks we’ve all been struggling with liking what we’re eating. We decided to give Trader Joe’s a break and shop at a few other stores, like Whole Foods. Matt does our grocery shopping and the list was always the same. In fact, we’d eat the same thing every week. Fish on Monday, Tacos on Tuesday, Pasta on Wednesday, Takeout on Thursday, Pizza on Friday, Breakfast Food on Saturday and Soup on Sunday. We got bored of this schedule. I think if we altered our meal schedule every few weeks, we’d be happier with the variety in our meal schedule.
Since I stopped eating meat a few years ago (I still eat fish), we don’t eat a lot of meals with meat and have found that it limits us with the type of meals I’m able to cook for my family. Lately, I’ve been thinking about bringing meat back into our home, just to make it easier for everyone.
Here’s a list of things Sebastian eats:
- Breakfast: yoghurt with honey, eggs, hash brown, waffles, banana, strawberries, green smoothie avocado
- Lunch: pasta, rice & beans, jelly sandwich (no peanut school), apple sauce, cheese stick, apple sticks, veggie sticks, carrots & hummus, yoghurt with honey, strawberries, dried cranberries, avocado, quesadillas
- Dinner: see above! We feed him the same things we eat.
Our original plan was to switch him over the summer but truth be told, we will likely switch him over the next 2-4 weeks. He’s showing signs of independence, more specifically he’s crawling in and out of his bed. So this is a huge sign that he’s ready to be in a big boy bed. What will make me feel more confident about moving him to a bed, is talking to him about the bed. Showing him other big boy beds and slowly introducing the idea, we did the same thing to potty training and sleep training. Oh yes, for those who questioned why we haven’t converted him to a toddler bed, we want to make sure he’s 100% potty trained. This would give him the ability to use the restroom in the middle of the night if he needs to do so!
It’s not something you just “do” over a weekend. A gradual move is the plan. I’ll continue to share on stories. As you’ve seen, we’ve moved his mattress to the floor and he’s still figured out a way to climb out. We’re convinced that he pivots off his hardback books in his crib. Several people recommended a crib tent, but I’ve read that these can be dangerous for toddlers.
I plan on getting him a training alarm clock, like this one when we do convert his crib.
This article was helpful to get mentally prepared for the transition.
Baby Monitor Recommendations
Our baby monitor broke a few weeks ago, so we’re on the hunt for a new monitor. Here’s what you all said when I asked for recommendations. The Nest and iBaby (although we bought the iBaby it never connected to the app) were the most popular answers. People also love Summer WiFi, Arlo Baby, Infant Optics, Project Nursery, while other people said WyzeCam (only $25!). We haven’t decided what we’re going to get next, but the WyzeCam looks interesting!
Most asked about items
This is a little note to you. Tomorrow you’ll officially be 27 months old. Not traditionally a huge milestone, but you’re experiencing so much as a toddler…sharing, potty training and sleeping in a big boy bed. You’re no longer our little baby. You’re officially a toddler.
As your mother, every day, week and month, you’re becoming Sebastian. It’s a beautiful thing to experience as your mother. Sebastian, you are Mr. Adventurer. There is nothing that holds you back from doing what you want to do in life. You will fall down 10 times and always get back up and try again. Please never lose this mindset. You love to experience life. We say “Let’s go on an adventure!” and you immediately light up. I know you’re going to be a wild one to tame, but we’re ready for it! We can’t wait to see what this year brings to our family. We’re so proud of your perseverance and your ability to always adapt in any circumstances.
We love you, Amorcito!
xo, Mommy and Daddy