It's like someone gave Alden and instruction manual on how to be 2. Because, man, he is TWO. He can say "TOO" when you ask him how old he is. Ask him twice in a row, and his second answer is likely to be "BLUE". He is never certain if we are inquiring about his age of his favorite color. Although, I'm not sure blue is actually his favorite color. But, it's definitely his go-to color if you ask him what color something is.
He yells "NOOO" at least fifty times throughout the day. And his "no" is generally followed by his furrowed brow, glare of death look that he intends to show his seriousness, but that often just results in us cracking up. It's funny but also trying.
And, his newest ever-so-two phrase is "I do it." As in, I'll buckle my own car seat, fix my own breakfast, load the dishwasher, unload the dishwasher, ride my own bike, drink with one hand, feed myself soup, be my own person. Whatever it is, he will do it. Alone. Without help.
Last night, this insistence came in handy. I got Alden undressed so he could get in the bath. He ran ahead of me into the bathroom and when I got there, he was sitting on his potty, grinning from ear to ear because he had gone potty. He hopped up and started pointing in the potty and yelling, "PEE PEE PEE PEE!" And, I looked and clapped. He beamed harder and danced around the bathroom. This morning, when I asked him if he wanted to use the potty he said, "NO!" Followed by the glare. Baby steps.
Then there's "mine". A lot of things are claimed as "mine" -- including the nearly everything we have that isn't actually his. "MINNNNEEE" followed by "NOOOO" are frequent phrases heard around these parts.
Alden adores the bike we got him for his birthday, asking to ride his "bike" and go around the "block". He's clearly trying to figure out if bike and block are synonymous with one another, asking over and over again about the "block" part while we are riding and pointing to his bike while saying, "block?" But, he loves to ride. It hilarious because he doesn't use the pedals. He just pushes himself with his feet, but he can really get going. He tries so hard to keep up with Kailey, who has also mastered the art of the two-wheeler.
He is attempting 3 and 4 word sentences. Usually, of the variety of, "mine, me have. ME" or "I want some more. ME". But, it's awesome to hear him stringing words together. He also frequently points things out. Like, "LOOK! Airplane. Sky!" Of course, many of the phrases require quite a familiar ear in order to translate. My mom has been spending a lot of time with us and has gotten quite good at deciphering his phrases, often translating things that I didn't understand.
One of the only people that Alden will allow to assist him is Kailey. Yesterday, he kept going over to her and kissing her arm and giving her hugs out of nowhere. She loves that. We all love that. And, when she tries to show him how to pedal his tricycle, he'll actually listen and attempt it. When I show him he furrows his brow and yells, "NO!" She holds his hand, looks after him, shares food with him, and is so attentive. And, in return, he gives her kisses, allows her to be the only one who can help him, shares with her, let's her have the first pick of all food items/treats, and shows great concern whenever she is upset or has an owie. They are so good for each other -- so mindful of each other. I love watching the two of them interact (except on mornings, like this morning, when Alden was jumping on Kai's head in the bed and she was screaming and he was screaming and they were both beyond irritated at each other. That happens too).
He is so eager to catch up to Kai and the rest of us. It's amazing how agile he is. How quickly he runs and climbs and gets around. He tries everything we're trying. And, he is intent at learning and advancing. He can already recognize about half the letters -- watching Kai read and go to school has definitely made him envious. A couple of weeks ago, we had to go to Cathy's house for child care for a few days because Kai was sick at home and we didn't want to expose the kids or Linda Ann to her illness. Alden was SO EXCITED to get to pack a lunch and LEAVE the house for the day. He'd jump from foot to foot at the back door while clutching his lunch yelling, "I GO! I GO". It was adorable and also a big indicator that this kid is READY for the next thing.
He loves going to the classes we have him in -- participating actively in the music class and watching intently during tumbling and trying out all the moves and equipment. He wants to join in, be part of the action and the fun -- and he's so capable and ready and enthusiastic. He's fun to watch.
He's definitely got a mind of his own. He's TWO.