I have just started providing childcare, fulltime, for another little toddler this past week. Little One has adjusted quite well to having another whipper-snapper in the house. I, on the other hand, am exhausted. I was originally going to take in two children (as that is how many I can take in without needing to licence my home). What was I thinking? One is enough!
In one week, she has already learned, and grown, so much!
First of all, she has begun to learn how to stand up for herself. This is a new concept for her as she's been around adults all her life. As far as I know, no adults in her life yank toys out of her hands or bonk her on her head with really hard toys. When something she's playing with does suddenly get taken from her, she'll often just stand there confused. She'll look at him, then at me, and back to him again. Sometimes she'll go after him and kind of "ask" for the toy (hold out her hand and say, "uh?") Other times she doesn't seem to care at all as she'll barely even look up and will just find something else to play with. Of course, there are those times when she'll get mad and squeal or worse, give him the beats. She can dish it out just as well. She has mastered the grab-him-by-his-scruff-and-throw-him-to-the-ground maneuver. Impressive.
Also, she has started letting me brush her teeth this week! The three of us have a teeth brushing party every afternoon before naptime. I don't know if it's peer pressure or perhaps it's just too much fun having another little one in the bathroom but she'll stand there with her mouth open and let me brush every single one of her pearly whites! Amazing!! Just like Raffi says, "ch ch ch ch"!!
She has learned that it is fun to run away from Mommy. Being an 18 month old who is learning so much about her capabilities she already knew this to some extent. For example, I'll turn to scoop her up for a diaper change only to see her scurrying away and hiding behind whatever she can - the corner, her giant stuffed horse, her beloved shoe rack. I do the Mommy-monster act ie; "I'm gonna get you" and she gets all kerfuffled. She laughs so hard and covers her eyes with her hands. Then she throws herself to the ground and tries to crawl away. I follow her around listening to her laughing and snorting and squealing away. Then it's diaper change time. That's just her... I'm sure you can imagine the fun when she has a buddy to gang up on me with! The two of them dart off in separate directions and you can tell by the way they're laughing and looking at me that they're getting such a kick out of it. Sometimes they'll end up cornering themselves together. Now that's a cute sight: two bouncing toddlers in the corner giggling away. Both will turn to run from me forgetting that there's a wall there. They'll try to push past each other to get free but get all mixed up instead. Once they get themselves sorted out, they giggle some more and then realize they're still cornered as all they've really done is switch places. Now who's laughing, ha!
It's fun having two around. A couple of weeks from now and I will be used to getting up way too early and have a lot more energy to have a lot more fun with them.
Does anybody have any ideas of what to put into a sensory table for toddlers? I have been using rice all week. I will use a water table this week. I want to use sand -- where do you get sand from anyway? You know, that good, smooth sand?