A friend I hadn't talked to in a while stopped in tonight and we got chatting about the *ahem* joys of raising toddlers. She has a daughter that is about a year older than Isaac and last time I saw her she was this sweet little girl with huge gorgeous brown eyes that suck you right in. Basically, she is pretty angelic looking. Anyhow, my friend started telling me about the new phase that her daughter has started - or should I say phases.  The NO phase, the nothing-you-cook-is-acceptable phase which is followed closely by the I-don't-care-that-I-loved-it-yesterday-today-it-gives-me-rage phase. And god forbid I forget to mention the bedtime battle phase.

Well, you know who you are: this one's for you.  In fact, I might blame you a bit for this one. I think that Isaac heard us talking.

One thing that I consciously worked on with Isaac was being able to put him down without having to rock/nurse/sing twelve million songs/cross my fingers/pray and back out like a ninja. With Mac, every night I used to rock and nurse him until he fell asleep and then had to engage every covert op skill I possessed in order to put him down in his crib and then back out without waking him. And if he did wake up, I'd have to start the whole process over. Do you know how many times I sang him the River Lullabye song from Prince of Egypt!?

So when Isaac came along one thing I made sure I did was put him down semi awake to eliminate the necessity for mommy ninja-skills. Bedtime with him is usually pretty easy. We tell him to kiss whichever parent that isn't putting him down, kiss Mac, say night night, then we go in his room. There is a cross stitched quilt I made for him hanging above his change table that has animals on it. Usually, we ask him "What does the ___ say?" (in case you're wondering, there's no fox and we don't dance) and he makes the corresponding sound, drinks some milk and then we drop him in the crib, tell him we love him and walk out.

Yeah… not tonight.

Tonight at around quarter to seven, I started trying to get the bed time routine going. Isaac was already in his jammies and his teeth were brushed, but was having none of it. I started to walk up to him.
"Hey Isaac, time for dodo!"
"Nope." Not upset. Just not having any of it.
"Dude, it's time for bed."
"Um… nope." Total denial.
Harry was sitting on the lazyboy in the corner laughing at me. I shot him a dirty look and he quickly tried - not very hard - to hide the laughter. He gave it a shot.
"Booboo," he said, "it's time for bed."
At this point, I started walking towards him. Isaac took this opportunity to turn the stink eye he'd been perfecting on me. It was cute, hilarious but also terrifying.  Then he turned and ran. I picked him up as he tried to run by and started walking to his bedroom. He was thrashing in my arms, shaking his head and basically making me feel like I was wrestling a really short, stocky snake.  We got to his room and I walked over to the blanket and tried to hand him his sippy cup.
I pointed to the quilt.
"What does a cow say?" I asked him.
"What does a horse say?"
"What does a pig say?"
"What does a sheep say?"
"What does a dog say?"
I was expecting him to answer this one because he LOVES dogs in a way that only my kid could.
"What does a duck say?"
"Allright dude. Mom's out. Do you want more milk?"
I set him down in his crib.
"Lay down buddy."
I shook my head and bent over to give him a kiss.
"Night night dude. I love you."
As I was walking out the door, I heard a little voice say:
I shut the door quietly behind me and walked into the living room expecting to hear a yell, but there was nothing. I'm half expecting to walk into his room tomorrow morning and find him sitting there waiting for me with his arms crossed, shooting me a dirty look and greeting me with

Looks like you'll have some company in the "NO" stage.


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