It is not his birthday (that was five months ago almost) and it is not any other important date but I just had this powerful realisation that if I didn’t write today, right now, while I am thinking of it, I might never write this poor lad a blog post telling you all how amazing and special and exhausting and hilarious this child is. And that would just not do, would it?!
Let’s start with the physical, shall we? Austin is a large child. People comment on his size. He looks normal sized to me and I think generally children are getting bigger because, from the anecdotal evidence I have gathered, it is quite normal for children to be wearing the next size up (at least). He is physically pretty capable – a good climber, a whizz on his balance bike and a striker in the making (he is pretty sporty all round so thanks to Rich / my dad for that as it certainly has nothing to do with me).
Austin looks like a three-year-old but he talks like a two-year-old (which he is). His speech is coming along and he is saying more and more words, phrases and a few sentences even but some vital sounds are still missing so at least once a day I have to squeeze him in a cuddle saying ‘I’m sorry, Austin, I just have no idea what you’re saying’ after he has shouted the same incomprehensible word over and over. This morning’s example was ‘tent’ (I worked it out eventually) – he said he wanted a tent (sounded like ‘ted’) but I don’t know where he got this idea or what he really means but maybe he heard Rich and I talking about the tents in the Go Outdoors sale. That is the other thing – he is a sponge and soaks up everything going on around him.
Austin is a really bright spark. He can direct you the right way to go in the car on familiar routes, he recognises places and he amazes me every day with some new ability that he has. He is also very funny and uses both physical comedy and wordplay to make us laugh.
Austin is also a really bright spark in that he has a ferocious temper! Yesterday, when I said no to him having some baby socks in Joules, he actually growled his discontent. He kicks the sofa if he gets angry. He can lash out and cry and shout. He does have tantrums (unlike Evelina) but they rarely last too long and can often be snapped out of it by laughter or some funny noise.
Austin has a kind and loving side to him. He loves his sister and his whole family. He is affectionate and thoughtful. I have seen that he is starting to understand emotions and he notices spots if people are crying on TV or in stories. He loves stories! I am so happy to have two children who love books. Of course, it may not last with Austin but I am going to do my damnedest to keep his love for storytelling and books alive.
Austin’s favourite things include his cars, balls and bats, the trampoline, Evelina, the paddling pool, Bing, PJ Masks, Paw Patrol, milk (although he is still on soya milk), juice, snacks All The Time, kisses full on the mouth, raspberries on his tummy and armpits, running, the park, going to the Big Shop (he associates it with some sort of drink or snack), going in the Big Garden at Twinkle (his beloved nursery), the sandpit (although he likes the sand to be anywhere but the pit), playing in the snow, drawing, dancing, singing, his balance bike and having his fan on in his room at bedtime.
I am happy to tentatively report that his sleeping has improved in the past months and although he still does have inexplicable periods when he is up at night for longer than is tolerable, these are getting fewer and in general, he is managing to sleep past 6 am which feels like a lie-in now. He is still napping for a decent amount in the day too (hence why I am able to write this).
There are some interesting developments on the horizon – we need to take the side off his cot at some point but we are dreading this, knowing that, unlike Evelina who didn’t get out of bed without asking for about 6 months, he will be straight out at the first opportunity. Potty training is also in our near future. Both these things can be tackled perhaps in the summer holiday (although it may be a little early for the latter) – we break up in three weeks so let’s see how it goes..!