This is from September, 2010, when Cleo was two. She's now four and a half, and I barely remember most of these details. I suppose that's why we write things down. Using Computer Magic, I have backdated this to appear as if it were posted then, so that it can assume its proper position in the timeline. I do hope this won't make the space/time continuum go all wibbly wobbly.
5:00 am. She wakes up and lets us know what she'd like: "Mama come in here, please!" "I want a bottle of milk in my bed!" "Turn on the light!" and then finally, "I want my bunny pacifier! ...There it is!" and then silence. She dozes off again, or just lies there quietly, and then tries again...
6:00 am. The requests resume, which, if more phonetically spelled, would go like this: "Mama come in heah pease! I wanna bodda' o mowk i' my bed! Tun onnda yite! I wan' my bunny pacifiah! ...Dere da is!" One of us goes in there, opens the curtain, turns on the light, brings her some milk, and she's happy. Sometimes she likes to have her milk in her bed, other days she asks to have "a yiddle cuddle in da chair" We ask her if she had dreams, and she always says yes. These days they're apparently all about bridges and Grandma and Grandpa.
7:00 am. Breakfast. The popular menus include oatmeal, toast with peanut butter, and scrambled eggs. A couple times a week we go to the local bakery for breakfast, and if asked to choose between toast and yogurt, she'll either say, "Bofe!" or, "I wanna past-a-ree!" She's always interested in the other people there (although she clams right up if one actually talks to her), and will ask, "What's dat nice lady's named? Where she goin'?" And she happily identifies vehicles as they drive by: "Dere's a [fiah tuck; schoo' bus, hiccup tuck, cmemen' mixah, tankah tuck, city bus, etc].
8:00 am. Two days a week, it's time for a morning at "school" She's still transitioning to her new classroom (her last teacher was magically wonderful, and her current one is merely adequate), but as long as we're peppy and chatty all way to school, she's fairly happy to stay there, and very happy when we pick her up after lunch. They do things like make muffins, paint, plant seeds, and do collages. I'd love to be a fly on the wall to see the crowd control techniques that must be employed for those activities.
12:00-2:00 pm She. Sleeps! I have a kid who sleeps on her own, in her own bed for more than half an hour at a time! It's a miracle. Her nap is anywhere from an hour and 15 minutes to two hours long. For a while, she was sleeping almost three hours, but she was also waking up at 4:00 am again, so we realized a re-distribution was in order. Now we get her up whenever she stirs after the hour mark, and things have gotten back into a manageable pattern.
2:00-4:00 Dada time! Park-going, fort-building, snack-having fun time. She likes to build with blocks, and if it's an enclosure, it's either a library, a bathtub, or a fort, if it's a line it's a train, if it's a stack it's a tower, and if it's a messy heap it's a parade. Don't ask me to explain toddler logic. The only response necessary is, "What a nice [library/bathtub/fort/train/
4:00-6:00 Mama time! We generally see friends and/or make dinner. One extremely useful toddler wrangling tip that I use a lot: The Choice. It's touted in all the parenting books and websites: "give your toddler the illusion of control by allowing them to make choices" and it sounds like very correct parenting. But what I didn't realize is, it's also incredibly effective parenting! It works like a charm! I feel like I'm getting away with something! "Cleo, would you like to go down the steps by yourself, or shall we hold hands?" When what you mean is, get down the stairs already, and quit dawdling.