Two boys with very different personalities

I can’t write things down quick enough these days. A little boy on the verge of turning four and a baby on the brink of 18-month do-it-myself-ness. That’s a lot of new things each day. Things that make us laugh, shake our head, or sigh in exasperation. They are each going to push us in different ways. Where one will be easy, the other will be hard. We’ve already seen this and it only seems to be amplified each day. I think one might be glass half full while the other is half empty. And they will probably switch opinions based on the situation. Their bond is growing stronger every day, but we haven’t been quick enough to document it.

Quinten, the bouncer. 

He recently decided that he likes to sit on people and bounce up and down. I found this out the hard way. He climbed on my stomach when I was laying on the floor. Wrigley has also found out the hard way, usually when he’s fast asleep. Quinten thinks it’s funny to 1. sit on the dog, and 2. bounce on him. Wrigley doesn’t agree with this logic. Quinten took it a step further this weekend. He sat on Maximus while he was on the floor. And when he started bouncing up and down, Maximus started giggling. That made Quinten giggle and the next thing we knew they were rolling around on the floor. There have also been a handful of times when Quinten plopped down on Maximus’ lap and no one screamed or pushed the other. Did it actually happen if there’s no photographic evidence?

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Building up their immune system together at the doctor office.

 

Maximus, the toy giver.

This one doesn’t happen very often. It’s usually the opposite of sharing, but I asked Maximus to get Quinten a car to play with and he worked really hard to find him a toy. He wanted to find the right toy, which wasn’t in the house. We usually have to break up tantrums after they both fight over the same toy. This time Maximus willingly went to find a toy before he started playing with one that we both knew Quinten would want. Progress. Major progress. And much less screaming.

 

Quinten, the spinner. 

Another new trick that he pulled out last week. Spinning in circles. It’s as fast as a 16-month-old can do it, but it’s pretty funny. Luckily, no injuries have been sustained yet. However, since he doesn’t understand when we tell him to move or stop, I suspect this won’t last too long. He spins around a few times and then bobs and weaves a bit before falling to the ground and laughing. What’s funnier than watching a baby sway across the floor? Of course he doesn’t usually do it just once.

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Evening snuggles

 

Maximus, the imaginer.

His mind is always going. Always remembering and always plotting. Always looking to the next thing. Every night we go through a list a questions. “Mommy, what are we going to do after we get up? And then what? And then what? What next?” He got up from his nap yesterday and showed me some blocks he had put together, “Look Mommy! This is the shooter guy.” Sure. He likes making up songs, too. Those are usually too random for me to remember. Yesterday he sang a song about the Easter bunny. “Eeee-aster bunny. Eeee-aster bunny….” My mom brain took over and I can’t remember the rest, but it was something about the Easter bunny bringing eggs and shoes and sunglasses.

 

Quinten, the professional walker. 

Besides spinning in circles, he’s also a master at running. If you need a good laugh, come to my house. His cheeks jiggle when he runs and his little chubby legs carry him much faster than you’d ever imagine. He also has his sights set on where he’s going. There’s no changing that direction unless you pick him up, but beware of the moving limbs! He spent a little time practicing walking backwards in our living room. The look on his face was absolutely priceless. He gave us the side-eye as he  s l o w l y  started walking backwards. As he got more confident, he started grinning.

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The worker and his boss.

 

Brothers, the supporters.

Since Quinten is learning a lot of new things, we all clap for him a lot. When he puts his drink back on his tray (instead of throwing it on the floor), we all cheer for him. Sometimes when we aren’t next to him, Maximus cheers for him when he uses his fork and spoon or puts his drink down. Quinten loves the support! Quinten recently clapped at me for putting him into his carseat. I’m told the day before he “helped” Bryan with the snaps and then clapped. Whatever, I still did a good job! 😉 Maximus has been into walking OVER cracks when we go on walks. (Also, walking and not sitting in the stroller.) “We have to step over the cracks, Mommy.” Last night, Bryan and Maximus were jumping over the cracks. After a few lessons and a few successes, I looked down at Quinten and saw him clapping at them. He did it a few more times before they realized he was clapping for them.

 

For all the crazy, hectic, loud moments at our house, there are just as many sweet, quiet, loving moments. From two boys who love to give hugs and kisses to two hyped up little people running through my house. We seem to see and feel it all these days. Looking at life through the eyes of children is definitely the place to be!

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The closest to a picture of them sitting together.
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Two boys with very different personalities

Watching their brotherly love develop

It was what got me most excited about having another boy. That brotherly love that I knew would happen some day. I hope it’ll last a lifetime and they’ll be really close, but whatever their relationship is I know it will be perfect. Something happened with Maximus when he turned three. He suddenly grew up a lot. Don’t get me wrong, he’s still a mess of emotions, but he’s now a member of the family who I can carry on a conversation with. Granted, they aren’t very intellectual, but they are still very meaningful! Over the past couple of weeks, Quinten has become much more involved in things. He got through the grabby stage (well, not completely past it) enough to somehow “play” with Maximus now.

Cuddling

It’s not the same kind of cuddling that Maximus and I do. And definitely not the same way Quinten snuggles with me. (Something about that little head resting on my shoulder, facing my neck, and sucking on his fingers. Melts my heart every time.)  It’s cuddling meets wrestling. The majority of the time Bryan or I break it up before someone starts crying. Maximus is almost to the point of obsessed with giving Quinten hugs or kisses, regardless of what Quinten is doing. It’s a good thing, or maybe because of, Quinten is heavy because otherwise I’m afraid Maximus would hurt him. He pretty much puts all his weight into the hugs and kisses and drags Quinten whatever direction he falls.

Talking

Quinten spent a week saying mamamamaLike most babies, he’s moved on to daddaaaa. He’s starting to sound a little more “fluent” so I imagine he’ll follow in his brother’s footsteps and “dada” will be his first real word. Oh well, we all know I’m his favorite. 😉 It’s gotten a lot louder in our house (and car) because Maximus loves talking to Quinten. He loves to get Quinten going with daadaaadaaa! Of course Quinten doesn’t have much volume control at this point and Maximus is an excited three-year-old. It can get to be a little much, but it almost always ends in Quinten giggling and then Maximus starts laughing too. And no one can be annoyed when a baby giggles.

Playing 

Well, they don’t really play together, but Maximus does a pretty good job of sharing and watching out for Quinten. We’re really working on the concept that some toys are too small and Quinten can swallow them. Sometimes Maximus gets a little carried away and rips ALL toys out of Quinten’s hands. He’s really good at giving Quinten a toy to play with. I’ve caught him doing that a number of times when no one has asked him to. “Here Quinten, here’s a toy to play with.” He uses the sweetest little voice when he does that. (He also uses a mean, loud voice when he tells Quinten no.)

For all Quinten knows, Maximus created food. (Give me a break, I had to pick something a fat baby would want.) His bright blue eyes light up when he sees Maximus and he gives him a great big toothy grin. Maximus is the only one who can get Quinten to laugh without tickling him. He loves when Maximus pays attention to him and lets him “play” too. This is what having babies is all about. Watching their love for each other grow each and every day. I feel incredibly happy and blessed to be able to watch the two of them grow together as brothers. It’s simply amazing!

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Watching their brotherly love develop

Brotherly love

We’ve been soaking up life at home. Carrying on conversations with Maximus like he’s an adult. At supper we try to talk about our days, teaching him to talk to your loved ones. It kills me when he rests his chin on his hand and says, “daddy, what you have for lunch?” It usually turns into a game where he tells us he had the same thing we did or that he had a meeting too. Nonetheless, it’s hilarious.

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He’s starting to pay a little more attention to Quinten. That basically means we have a 50% chance that he’ll get mad that I’m holding Quinten or a 50% chance that he’ll want to talk to or play with Quinten while I’m holding him. Toddlers are a lot like storms, you never know what they’ll actually do.

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So far, my favorite part of having two boys is seeing Quinten light up when he sees Maximus. Quinten has three favorite people in his life: mommy, daddy, and Maximus. He loves everyone and is very friendly to anyone who talks to him. But, we’ve got special places in his heart. I can tell by his reaction whenever he sees one of us, even if we aren’t talking to him. It melts my heart when he see Maximus and his little face lights up. I think he’s looking up to Maximus already!

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I promise I’m taking REAL pictures of my kids. I just don’t have the time to take them off my camera.

I also promise that we’re going to get Maximus’ hair cut. It’s a little wild right now!

Brotherly love

How different brothers are

Having a second baby is a lot like riding a bike for us. Feed the baby, change the baby’s diaper, swaddle the baby, and wait to start the cycle all over again. That’s about the only thing that is the same. Quinten has made his differences known since day one.

He came out with a beautiful latch and knew how to eat. Some could say that’s just as much my experience as it is his ability to do it. Either way, HUGE STRESS RELIEF on day one. On the second day Bryan said, “this is so much easier than with Maximus. It’s not stressful at all!” It’s been such a peaceful experience, with both of us falling right into step.

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Quinten doesn’t cry. Before you hate me, he does squeak and on a few occasions has cried. I won’t complain about a baby who doesn’t really cry and I’ll duck before people start throwing things at me. He eats every 2, sometimes 3, hours. I have wondered if he’s really hungry since our only indication is him getting agitated. If he was a hungry crier, it’d be pretty obvious. Maybe I’m keeping him too happy! 😉

Being a rockstar at eating, he’s gained weight. Maximus was always in the lower percentage. Based on my quick search, Quinten is in the 75-90%! You guys, that makes my mama heart explode. I love his chunky cheeks, the wrist creases that are starting to form, and I especially love his FAT legs. I have to move fat folds to bathe him or change his diaper. It’s the best! At 5 weeks, he appears to weigh a tad under 12 pounds. At 8 weeks, Maximus was a tad under 11 pounds. Point, Quinten.

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His neck strength has been great since the first few weeks. Again, not something we experienced before. It can get annoying sometimes because he doesn’t sit still when you’re holding him upright. And since he’s still itty, bitty it’s kind of scary! Usually this is an indication that he wants some space and he’ll happily hang out on the floor.

The biggest difference between the two is sleeping habits. At six weeks, Maximus moved to his crib. Come Saturday, I will not be moving Quinten. If I did, that would mean I’d walk to the front of the house four times during the night. I’d rather stumble to the foot of my bed to get him out of the pack ‘n play. It’s rough, but as his weight shows, little dude wants to eat. Who am I to deprive him of that luxury? {A few more weeks and then we’re going to figure something out!} We realized the first few days at home that Quinten didn’t like the blanket swaddle. Maximus rocked the swaddle until sometime between 5-6 months. It’s my comfort. I thought it made my babies sleep. Quinten is in a swaddle me sack, but he can’t be bothered to have his arms swaddled in. So, we adapt as we can.

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Maximus DID NOT like tummy time. Quinten loves it a little too much. Sometimes he moves his head around, but most of the time he falls asleep. FOR HOURS. I’m fairly confident that the reason he’s not sleeping at night is because he’s just not as comfortable. {Like I said, a few more weeks until I feel confident that he *might* be able to sleep on his tummy at night.}

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Quinten is his own little person and I’m excited to see how he grows into this personality. In the meantime, we’re adjusting our baby style to reflect him.

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How different brothers are

Brothers

Maximus is doing a great job of being a big brother. It started a little rocky with a lot of whining and tears, but he has gotten the hang of our new life. There was one time that we thought Maximus wanted to send Quinten “home” but we soon realized that he had confused the word home with going somewhere. {I’d being lying if I didn’t tell you that Bryan and I burst out laughing when we thought he was asking if we were taking Quinten home that first time we all left the house.}

Maximus includes Quinten in his morning and evening rituals. Whoever wakes Maximus has to answer the questions of where the other parent is. Now, baby Quinten is included in that conversation. Nighttimes include giving baby Quinten a hug and kiss too. Sometimes meals include baby Quinten too. Recently, Maximus asked if Bryan was eating chips and then promptly told me that baby brother was going to eat chips too, but only one chip. In our house that is considered sharing. 🙂

I was a little nervous about the transition from one toddler to a toddler and a newborn. I wasn’t so much worried about the newborn part but I was uneasy about the toddler part. That first week was exactly what I envisioned – the whining and crying! Oh my! After that we adapted into the routine that I hoped we would have.

Maximus doesn’t leave a room without knowing what his little brother is up to. Quinten goes from a moses basket, my lap, pack ‘n play in our room, or a baby seat. In Maximus’ mind baby Quinten doesn’t do much other than eat. If he’s making noise or awake he expects him to eat. With a schedule that is every two hours, that’s pretty spot on.

Maximus thinks it is his job to cover up Quinten when he’s in his basket or seat. He’s very good at not covering his face and making sure the blanket is perfect. He likes tickling his feet too. Maximus loves to look at and talk about baby Quinten’s little hands. It’s hilarious to listen to a two year old talk about a baby being little. Maximus doesn’t miss a diaper change and loses his mind if he can’t give you a clean diaper and the wipes. He’s 50/50 on throwing those diapers away. Apparently that got old after the first 20 diapers!

I can’t wait to watch this relationship grow and see how much fun {and trouble} these brothers get into!

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Brothers