Since Carter’s development doesn’t progress at the same rapid pace as an infant’s anymore, I am moving his monthly updates to quarterly instead.

      The last three months have been challenging for Carter – he went through a tremendous amount of change; Gavin was born, I was suddenly home all the time so he stopped going to Grandma’s, and we moved. All super stressful events for an adult to deal with, let alone a two year old who is still struggling to figure out how to express the emotions he is feeling. This has definitely brought out the best and …devil … in him, in such a short period of time.

      Our favorite things:

      • He LOVES Gavin. Loves him. Wants to hold him, have Gavin lay next to him in bed, hugs and kisses him. If Gavin is crying, he will run up to G and say, “Shhhh! It’s okay! Gavin, it’s okay!” Gavin usually stops crying too, because the love is mutual – he absolutely loves Carter. I want this to last forever!!! Sadly, I am pretty certain once Gavin is mobile and can get Carter’s toys, Carter is not going to be so sweet with him anymore.
      • He listens to other adults really well – we went to the dentist for the first time yesterday and he sat so well and let the hygienist clean his teeth and the dentist do an exam. He only struggled a little bit towards the end. I was so proud of him!
      • When Carter is in another room, I will call out, “Carter, what are you doing?” His reply is always, “Carter’s just doin’ stuff.” lololol
      • He is really good at throwing a ball (he can throw surprisingly hard) and is getting better at catching. He also enjoys trying to hit a ball with a bat too – Jeremy lets him use a squishy small cylinder as a bat and will throw a ball and Carter can make contact sometimes.
      • He has the most active imagination, telling you stories that he thinks up with the different people that he knows. He now loves it when Daddy tells him a spider man story before bed instead of reading from a book.
      • Ryan is one of the more prominent people in Carter’s life right now – his stories often include Ryan and anytime Carter does something he shouldn’t, he totally will blame Ryan for it!
      • Carter is so incredibly verbal that I sometimes forget he is just over two years old. He expresses things well and there are only a handful of times where I don’t understand what he is saying. We are working on getting him to stop referring to himself in the third person now, it is slow going, but we are getting there.
      • He is still struggling to express his emotions, so I am trying to work with him on identifying what I feel, or what he feels, to help him out. This one is slow going though, as I don’t always have the time to be able to spend with him to work through everything. Another one of the challenges of two kids.
      • “I’m sorry. That’s Okay. It was an accident.” He says this every time he says ‘I’m sorry’ – he knows that usually people will respond with, “That’s okay, it was an accident” so he just saves them the trouble and says it for them!
      • He is starting to play independently – for instance, he is upstairs by himself in the bonus room playing and I am in the kitchen. It is AWESOME. We set up one of the video monitors up there so we can watch if we need to.
      • “Have a good day at work Daddy!” He is finally okay with Jeremy going into the office for the day and understands that Daddy can’t play with him.
      • He is a maniac on his tricycle now – he zooms around the kitchen and family room with surprising speed and turning accuracy. There was a marked improvement in about a two week time frame.

      Phases that I hope pass quickly:

      • He unbuckles his seatbelt (the top part) in the car and pulls his arms in front of the restraints. This situation alone pressed every button in me when I was on the freeway and couldn’t pull over to fix it and he refused to put the belt back on the correct way.
      • “Nononononono” A favorite phrase of his lately when he isn’t getting his way. Also include kicking legs while you try to physically remove him.
      • He goes through periods where he does not listening. Not even a little bit. He will do things he knows he is not supposed to and doesn’t care what the consequences are. But on the flip side, he is FINALLY understanding time outs and that they really aren’t cool.
      • When he gets caught dropping something on the tile floor or doing something he knows he isn’t supposed to, he puts both hands over his mouth in the, “OH NO!” like expression. Would be great if he just didn’t do anything he shouldn’t in the first place.
      • He catches onto phrases that I use often, like, “That’s ENOUGH Mommy.” (My alternative to saying no … apparently I do this too much). And “Oh Shoot!” Yeah – it could be worse.

      Overall, Carter is a smart, charming, and active kid. He is wily about pushing our buttons, but then gives you these awesome nuggets of cute and funny that it makes you feel bipolar.