My main focus the first year of Beckett's life was teaching him good sleep habits, how to crawl, walk, and feed himself, but the last several months I can feel the focus shifting from development skills to behavioral skills. It's extremely important to us to raise our children to be pleasant, polite, happy, full of life, and respectful. This is a very hard age because he is mischievous, testing the boundaries, but still too young to fully understand consequences. I'm reading one of the Love and Logic books right now and like everyone else, I just love it. It's helping me firm, consistent, creative, and loving when Beckett goes wild. His recent thing is to have a full on melt down when he doesn't get his way, and although giving in is often an easy solution, I know that things will be easier in the long run if I don't. I just try to redirect his attention to something else and help him move past throwing a tantrum. It sure can be hard though when we can't always understand what each other is saying.
The thing that is so fun right now is giving Beckett responsibilities. Yes, it is almost always easier if I do things myself, but he is so happy and proud when he is able to help out. And by teaching him things like cleaning up his toys and putting his shoes away right when we get home now, it will be much easier than if I wait until he is older. Here are some of the chores and responsibilities he is getting very good at:
- Putting his shoes away as soon as we get home.
- Putting laundry away. He puts the bibs in the kitchen drawer and his socks in his dresser.
- Cleaning the sliding glass door and mirrors on the closet doors (they wouldn't need to be cleaned so often if he didn't put his hand prints all over them).
- Picking up all the food he throws on the floor after lunch. He's started handing the food he doesn't want to me now instead. When he does drop food on the floor he usually says "no no" as he does it.
- When I cut vegetables for dinner he stands on a chair next to me and I give him a butter knife to "cut" the veggies with.
- He absolutely loves to hold the dust pan while I sweep.
- I'm trying to let him walk at the grocery store rather than riding in the cart. The first few times he would pick anything and everything off of the shelf to put in the cart, but he is starting to understand to wait until I tell him what to put in the cart. It slows me down a little, but it's actually much easier than trying to keep him buckled into the cart for 30 minutes.
- For the life of me I can't get him to leave the dishwasher alone while I do dishes. He is constantly trying to close the dishwasher while I'm still loading it. Due to the dish soap and sharp knives involved, this is one chore I definitely do not want help with.
Here is a funny video of what it's like trying to get things done with your baby's help.