The day finally came. Maxon embraced his inner artist. Actually, truth be told, this day came a few months ago but we have been a little, ahem, neglectful of our little blog. It all started the day I realized that he was holding scissors properly and opening and closing the blades to effectively cut paper. Prior to that he could get the scissors to close once and then just ripped the paper apart. Then the cute little button-and-string manipulatives I bought were actually being threaded together instead of being thrown across the room in frustration. Lo and behold, the dexterity in this little three-year-old’s finger (“but I’m three-and-a-half!”) can do more than swipe the screen of the iPad.
Next thing I know, he is writing his name. I fully credit Mike for introducing the concept of writing letters on the whiteboard and then to school for their daily “journal” exercises. Over the next few weeks, he came home with sheets of “artwork” where he dutifully wrote his own name on the back. At first the letters in his name were mostly in a jumble, definitely written in order but placed inconsistently. Sometimes it was even right to left. Over the next few weeks, the line became straighter and always left to right. He started drawing actual pictures instead of tight little scribbles. I’m not saying I always know what he’s drawing but clearly he has a vision.
We’ve also tried out a number of classes this spring. We just wrapped up a semester of Music Together with Cooper and we are currently trying out soccer class with varying levels of success. The shakiest class we’ve taken so far was swim lessons just last month. It was the first class of any kind where he left me by the sidelines and he was on his own in his little class with the teacher. While eager to do what he was told by the teacher, he would do the bare minimum to get any place on his head wet and was generally ready to bail if another kid started getting a little splashy. When the teacher was pulling them around the pool on pool noodles, he kept his head and neck so far up above water I thought he’d get a cramp. While he didn’t love swim lessons on that first go-round, I do think it piqued his interest and he is much more adamant about going to the pool lately. We had a big breakthrough while we were in Virginia where he was able to float all by himself on a pool noodle and just this weekend he got into our neighbor’s pool (with another promise of a pool noodle) without much prodding. There is still hope.
However, not all developments are positive. Maxon is also embracing his inner toddler. I thought it was just a passing phase a few months ago but still it lingers. The baby talk. The whining. The whimpering and crying at the drop of a hat. The whining. The volleyball conversations that sound a lot like “yes, it is” and “no, it’s not”. Wanting to be carried just like Cooper. Or eating whatever Cooper is eating. And the whining. Lots of whining. Did I mention whining?
Maxon is also embracing his big brother duties, such as taking away toys from Cooper and putting them where he can’t reach. Or seeing which toy Cooper is waddling towards and getting there faster to snatch it up (“but I had it first!”). Or standing riiiight next to him and stressing Cooper out (“But I’m not even touching him!”). But then again, he is also quick to run off and grab a pillow and put it on the spot where Cooper fell or bumped his head. And to repeat over and over whatever little random thing he did to make Cooper laugh. And to endlessly sing the “Itsy-Bitsy Spider” on demand.
He is the total package.