We are a married couple who adopted our little Russky, Nikita {aka Nicky, Nicky noodle, little man, Nikoli, the Nickster, crazy dude, goofball, puppy love, etc...you get the picture!} from St Petersburg, Russia four years ago. Join us as we stumble through the joys and perils of parenthood, while our son teaches us a few things along the road...



The Tantrums...Oy The Tantrums! Wow - the "terrible two's" are in FULL force in the Johnson household! No matter what the question, the answer is always "NYET"! Sometimes immediately followed by a "Da", but always no first! Now I ask you, dear readers, what is the point of this crazy shenanigan? Just exactly what does a toddler think they are accomplishing when they engage in this practice? They're still giving in by saying yes eventually (or just following suit with whatever one asks of them). I'm baffled and amazed at the number of times we hear "NYET" on a daily basis. I've read about every article I can find on the internet and in the toddler books we own & most of them say the same thing "IGNORE"...Time Out is also very popular, as is Reasoning. The problem with the 2 latter conventions are as follows: 1. Sitting still (much less sitting still and quiet) is not possible; 2. Nicky doesn't understand English! Now - we do include the "reasoning" during & after the ignoring part, because after all, this will help him to understand English. Only thing is, he doesn't right now, so where are we getting with that?! I do very much enjoy hearing myself talk, so not all's lost! So - IGNORE. I probably say "IGNORE" as may times a day as Nicky says "NYET"!
Another baffling ritual now performed on a daily basis - the flailing on the cold floor, accompanied by the screaming. And all because we won't pick him up when he wants - ok, I can kind of understand that. But - the knock-down drag-out tantrum for (seemingly) no reason whatsoever?! That one gets me! I know, I know. Toddlers lack the ability to fully express their wants/needs, etc, so the whining & tantrums rear their ugly heads. Still - I'm surprised at the number of all out tantrums this kid is able to perform in any one given day...they look so tiring! You'd think just one tantrum would invoke a rest period.
The number one time we hear "NYET!"...Are you hungry, Nicky?...Do you want to have breakfast/lunch/dinner, Nicky? "NYET!" Always "NYET!". Usually followed by him wanting to sit in his chair and if it's a snack, will then eat. Meals - forget about it! Pushing the plate as far away from oneself as possible, before even testing out said meal, seems like it's the cool thing to do. Maybe more adults should engage in this practice as to manage their weight! I'm at the point of "why bother?". Why bother fixing a plate of food (of which I KNOW Nicky has eaten before & has enjoyed before)? Why worry that my child gets the nutrients he needs on a daily basis? "He'll eat when he's hungry" is my prevailing thought...I know he's not starving to death. How do I know this you might ask? Well, he's in the 75th percentile when it comes to weight and he eats SECONDS & sometimes THIRDS at school!!! No wonder he's not hungry!
After trying several methods, in an effort to give Nicky "power over food" (what the heck?!), I have issued a "cease fire" when it comes to meals. I don't understand WHY this has become an issue, but apparently it is a battle momma & daddy will NEVER win, so it's not worth us trying. Interestingly enough, last night's "fix my own plate & but nothing for Nicky, then sit down and eat without him" method actually worked! He freaked out & begged for a plate of food and when I gave him some, he began to eat without any prodding...until he had trouble spearing broccoli with his fork, and asked me for help. Once I said I would help, he was all done and didn't want to eat anymore. Note to self...don't help no matter what!
Some days I really miss that quiet little guy that showed no emotion at all in Russia. Well...on the other hand, I do quite enjoy the kisses that are given out at random, so I guess we'll just have to take the good with the bad! Only 6 months until he turns 3! (all this craziness will end then, right?!)

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