Learn everything you need to know about your 27 month old toddler. Track important developments and milestones such as talking, walking, growth, memory & more.
There was a time when your child was content to sleep in his crib with just a blankie and his teddy. Now that he's in a big-kid bed, he insists on having a sleepover with every one of his stuffed animal buddies -- and you might be wondering why. It could be that he's afraid of being in his bed alone and looking for security and protection from Teddy and his plushy gang. Or, it could just be that he wants his buddies around because it's something fun and different, and it gets a reaction out of you.
What's a parent to do (or think?) about this seemingly weird toddler behavior? And it's not just the stuffed animals that can be perplexing -- it's the breath holding, the refusal to eat anything but pasta, the desire to streak through the house squealing and wearing nothing but socks. Little kids are still learning about social conventions and the world around them, so not only might your tot not care what anyone thinks about him stuffing a pea up his nose, he's also probably doing it because it's interesting and he wants to know how it feels or where the pea ends up. Hang in there, Mom and Dad!
You can help keep your kiddo out of mischief with playtime; kids this age love interactive games. Finger plays and songs might be popular with your little one -- try the This Little Piggy or "Itsy Bitsy Spider" and see if your tot can follow along. You can also play guessing games with your toddler. Can he figure out what animal has a curly tail, a funny nose, likes to get dirty, and says oink? Thinking games are great for passing the time in the car or when you're stuck in a waiting room, too.
You just can't help falling in love (all over again!) when your toddler gazes up at your with his beautiful eyes and sweet little face. You probably aren't thinking at that time about ways to keep his pretty peepers healthy -- but be sure you don't take your tot's good vision for granted.
Your child's pediatrician probably just did a routine vision screening with your toddler at his 2-year baby- well appointment. This is good, because discovering abnormalities early is important for treating vision problems and potentially preventing vision loss. If the doctor does notice a problem with the eyes, she'll either treat it or refer your child to an eye specialist.
Although the doctor screens your little one's eyes, parents are most likely to spot vision problems in their toddlers. Signs to look for include crossed eyes, drooping eyelids, eyes that don't move in sync, pink, red, or milky white eyes, crusting, or discharge. If you notice your tot squinting or having trouble seeing clearly, that's a red flag that he needs to have his vision checked.
If your toddler wears glasses or needs them, be prepared for days when he's just not in the mood to put them on; learning to adjust to glasses takes time. Buying some tiny play glasses for his favorite stuffed animal might help, and if you wear glasses, set a good example by taking good care of them. While your child likely won't need eyeglasses, it's beneficial if he wears sunglasses outdoors. Look for shades that block UV to minimize his exposure to harmful rays that can increase the risk of cataracts later in life. If you kiddo refuses to wear sunglasses, protect his peepers with a brimmed hat that shades his eyes.
You and your husband need a quiet moment together, but by the time you get your active toddler to sleep each night, you too, might flop onto the bed, ready for nothing more than a much-needed rest. Parenting is a top priority, which can force marriage into the backseat. But your marriage is the foundation of your family, and a happy Mom and Dad with a healthy relationship make for happier kids too.
You know that you and your husband need time for yourselves -- but do you just pay it lip service? Time to check your schedules, find a babysitter, and get out together, even if it's only for dinner or a stroll through the park. It's crucial that you invest in your relationship to keep it strong and stay connected with your spouse.
Even as a toddler, your child is watching how you and your partner interact with each other. Do you show affection? Treat each other with respect? Your marriage serves as an example (and you as the role models) for your child of how to communicate well and care for someone you love. This certainly doesn't mean you and your hubby will never fight -- arguments are part of any marriage -- but if you handle things well most of the time, your child will learn healthy ways to resolve conflict, that saying "I'm sorry" is not a sign of weakness, and that people can still love and forgive each other even after an disagreement.
When's the last time you did something nice for your sweetie or gave him a compliment? You love him, but have you shown him? A kind word or thoughtful gesture -- an extra hug, a note in his briefcase, or even a gentle touch -- can mean a lot to your spouse and keep you close.