Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Silence is NOT Golden

I'm talking toddlers again; those little people that spend their days trying to find different things to get into, and new ways to assert their independence. Around our house, it is a well known fact that if Little Dude is being quiet, he is either asleep or getting into something he shouldn't.

As most parents of two year olds will tell you, these little people tend to be rather loud about everything. Little Dude usually lies on the calmer end of the spectrum relative to many kids, but he still manages to make a big loud production out of everything, especially at home. Therefore, it always makes me nervous when I am doing something and realize that I can't hear him yelling or banging things around. It instantly conjures up thoughts of what he might have gotten into this time. Sometimes, scary worst case scenarios flip through my mind. Luckily we haven't had a worst case scenario yet, but he is almost always doing something he shouldn't.

Here are a few instances I can think of from the last few months:
  • He went through all of his sister's dresser drawers (they are much easier to open than his) and emptied EVERY. SINGLE. piece of clothing out of them.
  • Pulled a chair up to a shelving system to reach items up high that he isn't supposed to have.
  • Decided that he wanted a more creative medium for his markers than just paper so he took to his legs.
  • Checked to see just how long the roll of toilet paper was and how many Kleenex are actually in a box.
  • Dumped out the cat water bowl and tried to spread the water as widely as he could with his arms.

Just over this past Memorial Day Weekend:
  • Made some artwork on the wall using a tube of diaper cream.
  • Made some artwork on the floor by dumping out a full tub of Baby Boo's baby puffs and arranging them in different piles.
  • Discovered that the gate blocking the basement stairs off was accidentally left open, went down into the basement, and played in the "sand box" (AKA the cat litter box).
  • Found a bottle of mommy's nail polish and decided to paint his own nails. Once the nails were done, he proceeded to draw on his legs since he had yet to be discovered.
I think the weekend was particularly bad because I let my guard down when hubby is around. It seems that 2 sets of eyes are worse than 1 because it is easy to assume that the other parent is watching him. Not to mention that the nail polish incident happened while I was preparing food in the kitchen, hubby was watching a movie, and Little Dude was painting his nails RIGHT NEXT TO HUBBY!

Check out his handiwork:
It was obviously my fault too since I left the nail polish in his reach. The thing is, Little Dude is amazingly quiet when he is doing something he knows he shouldn't be doing. Normally he does talk about everything he is doing since he is discovering language. He also has the coordination of. . .well. . . a 2 year old, which means he is normally bumping into things and dropping them all over. When he wants to fly under the radar, all the sudden he manages to be completely silent. It is uncanny how well he can flip the switch.

While I still roll my eyes at hubby because of the nail polish incident, I can understand why it took him a while to realize what Little Dude was up to. That, and the guy has an inability to focus on more than one thing at a time. . . men! Luckily. . . and impressively, Little Dude managed not to get any nail polish on the furniture or his clothes at all. I may have to eat my words in regards to the coordination of a 2 year old! It seems that he chooses when and where to implement his coordination. He did a much better job on his nails as a 1st timer than I would have thought him capable of that's for sure.

Moral of my story - Beware the silence; unless a toddler is sleeping, no good can come of it. I probably shouldn't generalize. It very well may be that I have a little monster on my hands. . . either way I love him to pieces. I know his behaviors ring true with other toddlers at least in part. The transition from infancy to toddlerhood includes the development of abstract thinking. Being deceptive is included in that. Lying and deception is a higher level behavior that is (almost) uniquely human. That doesn't mean I encourage bad behavior, but it is yet another sign that he is on track. I for one am proud of him!


  1. It seems that two sets of eyes are worse than one because it is easy to assume that the other parent is watching

    This! It's always harder when Erik is around 'cause I often assume he's watching Bowen and that's when he ends up eating bugs and pooping on the floor.

    Oh, and Bowen is already doing the quiet thing when he's into something naughty, which usually means that he's licking a dirty shoe or eating dog or cat food.

  2. Funny that Bowen already does the quiet thing. I haven't noticed with Hailey but she goes for whatever she wants usually without remorse. She screams at me if I try to stop her.


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