Andrew turned 18 months old on 2/17. Halfway to two already. It's hard to believe he's already 18 months old and at the same time it's hard to believe he's only 18 months old. Mostly, because it feels like he's been here forever. He feels firmly entrenched in our family now; a full-fledged member. For the first year or so he was still a n00b we were trying to get used to. Now he's in the club. ;)
Andrew at 18 months is often mistaken by people who don't know us for at least two years old, if not older. He had his well child visit on the seventeenth and he's right around 70th percentile for both height and weight (33 inches and 27.5 pounds, respectively). So while's he's bigger than his brother was at this age, he's by no means gigantic. He's pretty advanced physically (he's walking, running, climbing, wrestling... eep), and he's pretty coordinated. He can already throw and kick a ball. He's also talking a lot. The pediatrician asked us if he has at least a dozen words yet and I told her he was starting to put short sentences together ("I want juice," etc). Maybe these things in combination with his slightly larger than average size are what make people think he's older.
Speaking of his size, we just moved him into size 24 month tops. The 18 month tops were getting too short and tight on him as he has a rather prominent little belly. He has room to grow in 24 months. The length of his 18 month pants is good but they're getting tight in the thighs (thanks daddy) and starting to get a little snug in the waist (he's got the "Surber belly" for sure). They're way too long though. So he's already throwing me for a loop with the clothing. I think he's also in a size 6 shoe. Philip's in an 8. At this rate, I'm wondering if before long Philip will be wearing Andrew's hand me downs!
As far as his speech goes, that continues to develop more and more each day. Right now, he's enjoying saying "no" in response to everything, something big brother has been coaching him on. Nice. His list of new/newish words include: book, dog, juice, buddy, brother, bear, coco (cookie), car, Buzz (as in Lightyear), Nana, and "tea" which is his word for "pick me up or put me down."
He's got all four of his first molars. Not even sure when that happened! In the past month he's been teathing like crazy. I think his total tooth count is up to 12. Speaking of teething, that's been different. With Philip, you barely noticed he was teething. Andrew is a different story. His sleep is affected. He cheeks turn bright red. He drools. And, oh yeah, he bites. The biting is getting better, I guess, but also getting pretty old. He's not biting so much out of curiosity and teething anymore as much as he is biting out of retaliation and frustration. This hasn't been a good thing for his brother who often bears the brunt of it. We're trying to work with him on it but that's going about as well as trying to put a one year old in time out (which we've only had marginal success with at this point).
He's really taken an interest in books lately. I just recently started a bedtime routine with him where we read a couple of books and I sing him the songs we sing to Philip at bedtime and then say his prayers. He loves looking at the books and will grab them at bedtime and hop into the chair ready to read. We sing Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star at night and he has just recently started trying to sing it himself during the day. He can say twinkle and star. It's really cute.
He loves Finding Nemo and Toy Story. Disney Pixar continues to get more and more of our money. It's so cute hearing him say Nemo. It comes out "me-mo." The boys have DVD players in the car (Andrew's still not a happy traveler) and he always gets sad when Nemo turns off and cries out "No, Me-mo!"). He loves movies and television in general, as awful as that sounds. I know he watches more tv than he should, but I find that's really hard to avoid when you have an older child and, seriously, I need to get dinner made in the evening. The AAP can kiss it on that one; he has better verbal skills than some preschoolers I know. Alas, he also loves that wretched little brat Caillou just as much as his brother does so we hear a lot of his whining voice in our house these days.
He's very attached to mommy, although that's nothing new. I think it's a little late for the typical separation anxiety period, but he's definitely got a lot of that going on. It's at the point where I don't know if it's better to sneak away when I have to go out for work, or say goodbye and deal with the tears. I think either way he cries but it's even more sad now that he cries out "mommy" when he wants me. Especially at night.
He loves playing outside with his brother and he's absolutely fearless, tackling the big slide on the swing set and already trying to climb the rope ladder. So different from Philip, who's just starting to get really comfortable with those things himself. He's well on his way to full-blown dare devil status. And he's a runner. Where Philip would always stay close by at that age (and still does), Andrew likes to test his boundaries (and our speed). Thinking a fence is going to be a necessity and soon! He also loves bathtime and water in general. He did great in the pool last year and I'm excited for warm weather so he can get some more time in the water this year (another way in which he's so different from Philip, who still cries almost every time he has to have his hair washed). He loves to splash and hardly flinches when he gets water in his face (even going so far as to blow bubbles in the tub--not something we're encouraging!).
He's also a total mess-maker. Philip was such a neat and tidy eater. I always marveled at how having a self-feeding toddler was nothing like the way it was portrayed on tv. With Philip, a crumb was rarely out of place. With Andrew, I'm pretty sure our high chair will be destined for the curb by the time he's through wreaking meal time havoc upon it. We've totally given up on putting the cushioned cover on it. It's just not worth it. He also loves to go into the playroom and pull out everything he can find and dump it onto the floor, just to watch it pile up. Good times.
He's still a helper though and will help put toys away and throw things in the garbage if we ask him to. One of his favorite things to do is throw away his dirty diapers. The downside to this is he's also thrown a lot of things away that weren't garbage! Some of them rescued in time, others we suspect not.
He still eats and sleep great. Most days he eats more (and faster) than Philip at meal time and he sleeps all night. He still doesn't nap as long as I'd like. Most days it's only an hour. How I miss Philip's two two hour naps at that age! The boys usually take their nap at the same time with Andrew waking up first so it's nice to get an hour of alone time with him before Philip wakes up.
He (along with Philip) are still rear-facing in the car. :) He had a brief period of not wanting to be strapped into the seat but that's not all that new with him. He seems like he might outgrow his seat sooner than Philip though (in height and weight) which means I'm sure I'll need to buy a new seat for him to stay rear-facing in eventually. Whoohoo! ;)
Less than six months until his second birthday. I've already begun setting aside ideas for both boys as their parties are two weeks apart. I have several ideas in mind for Andrew so I need to get busy narrowing them down. The big 2 will be here before I know it!