In May I went to Disney Social Media Moms. It’s a social media conference at Walt Disney World that helps bloggers think, be creative, have fun and meet other family bloggers. Authors, social media folks and a couple of Walt Disney employees all spoke to us on a variety of things. One of the speakers, Amy Foster from Disney Park Insight mentioned “18 summers”.
Her point was basically that we have our kids for 18 summers if we’re lucky. A period when only the parents have complete control of the fun, education and life molding experiences that our kids will have. I saw her presentation at the beginning of summer and her ominous countdown stuck with me for the next couple of months. This is the last time I’ll watch them go into a lake for the first time. This is the last time I’ll see them wearing that super cute onsey with the flying bear on it. I’m sure all parents run that scenario in their minds and it’s maddening.
So our house has been through 1 and 3 summers with two great small people. Here are the landmark achievements that happened during the summer of 2012.
Jake, AKA- Toddler Mojo, was a couple months shy of 3 years old and had a developing vocabulary. At the end of the summer he was chattering away and able to tell us what he wanted. We also learned that he liked animals-all animals, but especially horses and farm animals. “Real horses” became “I want to see real horses” and we’re trying to teach him the more polite, “May I see the real horses please”.
By the end the summer Charlie, AKA-More Mojo was about to turn 1, could say “dada” and limited babbling.
Charlie started the summer barely scooting anywhere and ended it crawling very quickly, much to the chagrin of the cats in the house. Toddler Mojo was walking and moving like a toddler. Now Toddler Mojo runs everywhere, climbs (hide the ladders Dad), loves bounce houses and is expressing an interest in various ball sports.
Truth time: we were a bit concerned that he wasn’t doing anything ‘sporty’. It’s not that we specifically want him to be good in sports; it’s that I never liked playing group sports and I didn’t want to influence him. The jury is still out what sport he’ll like, but if he’s like dad then he’ll go towards tennis and karate.
More Mojo developed rolls of flesh on his arms and legs, becoming a marshmallow baby. He also got his first couple of teeth!
Toddler Mojo lost a little bit of the baby face. He also overcame his hesitation of water!
Toddler Mojo stated to want to do more, but was getting frustrated. This is a really cute phase, but I know it’s frustrating for him. We’re encouraging him lots and try to stop him from saying “I can’t” or “It’s too hard”.
At the end of this summer we’re still in the ‘molding’ phase of both children. They’re learning, experiencing new things and becoming the little personalities that will inhabit big bodies one day. With More Mojo we’re enjoying it more, possibly because we know that this is the last little person that will grace us. We also know what to expect to an extent and (based on a 3 year old) it’s easier, for now.
If I could fast forward a year from now to recap the summer of 2013 I would see quantum changes in both of them. It is now that, as a parent, I need to remind myself that it’s a day to day effort. Don’t get bogged down when they’re crabby or do something bad. Immediate forgiveness and reinforce the learned lessons because they take time. Act like I want them to act. I’m good at saying ‘please’ and ‘thank you’, but these little myna birds repeat everything I do and say, don’t forget that.
2 and 4 more summers to go! We’re already planning what we’ll do in the summer of 2013 and looking forward to the trips, changes and new experiences for the entire family.