Asahi's 2 Year Update – Sleep and Everything Else

I’m a few months late on this post (blame my twin pregnancy!) but I’m happy to finally get to it now! Asahi is currently almost 2 years and 3 months old and a few things have changed in the last few months which I will try to note.

First off, from about 20 months old Asahi started attending preschool three days a week. He spent the first month in the baby class which was only in the morning, but now he stays all day from 9:30AM to 4:30PM when he has school. On the days he doesn’t have school, this is basically his schedule:

6:54AM – Wake up (anyone else’s kid wake up at the same time every day it seems like??)

7:00AM – Cry for breakfast until it appears at the table in front of him

7:30-9AM – Play independently at home while I clean up and get ready for the day

9:30AM – Head out to the park or for a playdate, have a morning snack on the way

11:30AM – Lunch! If we eat out at a restaurant, we try to eat a bit before noon to avoid the lunch rush. If we eat at home it’s more like noon.

1:00PM – Nap! He naps at 1 at school so we try to do the same on off days. He usually naps until 3 or 3:30

3:30PM – Afternoon snack and then independent play

6:00PM – Dinner

7:00PM – Bath

7:30PM – Pre-bed snack, brush teeth, read books

8:00-8:30PM – Bedtime (if I’m lucky!)

Asleep in his floor bed (with a fake ice cream cone of course)

Sleep: My Why I’m Not Sleep Training Video got a fair amount of attention on Youtube, so I figured it’s time for an update! If you follow me on instagram (@mymotherhoodtokyo) you’ll know that we recently transitioned him to a floor bed in his own room when we moved to our new apartment last month. It’s been going really well! Unfortunately, when we did it he has been going through various stages of colds, teething, etc so it’s hard to say how it would have gone if he was 100% healthy, but overall it hasn’t been bad at all. He pretty much sleeps all night long by himself in his bed at this stage, just like he was doing in the crib previously. I’ve responded to him nightly when he wakes up for his entire life, so at this point he knows if he wakes up and needs me that I (or my husband) will come to him. Usually he only wakes up if he is feeling unwell (ex. coughing excessively) or if he is overtired, which sometimes happens on days he has school since they have a shorter nap period (1.5 hours) than he usually has at home. But generally he falls asleep on his own and sleeps all night long without needing me. I talk more about his sleep in my video Sleeping Through the Night Without Sleep Training so you can check that out too.

Asahi also still has one nap a day of usually 2-2.5 hours. He sleeps in his floor bed for this as well, but he will occasionally nap in the stroller if we are out on the weekend (only for an hour or so though). I try to be home for his naps, especially since he started full days at school, because he tends to get overtired easily and it causes night terrors. Oh yeah, NIGHT TERRORS. They are not fun. For him, they look like crying constantly for 30+ minutes with no way to soothe him until he finally wakes up, usually if I turn on the light really bright. This only happens infrequently though if he has a short nap at school AND a too late bedtime. But man, I dread it!

Riding in a sled at Grandma and Bumpapa’s house in Washington State

Physical Developments: I think these days it’s more about what can’t he do? Some of the things he does regularly are: using a stool to wash his own hands, climbing up and down stairs by himself, walking on curbs/balance beam with assistance, eating fully by himself with utensils at a weaning table (no high chair), peeling a mikan and banana, brushing his teeth (I do it afterward as well), unlocking/locking the door using a key, drinking water from a cup without spilling, and walking for longer distances while holding hands without asking to be carried. Usually he’s good for 3-4 blocks at least!

Language: In the last 6 months I’ve seen Asahi’s abilities with language truly blossom. He is a natural! He now speaks in sentences in both English and Japanese, although I think his vocabulary in English is still more advanced at this point since it is his primary language as of now. He often asks me things such as, “Mama, where’s my blue ball?” or makes requests like, “Snack please!”. Currently he is obsessed with shinkansen and trains and spends tons of time memorizing the trains and their names from his books. He can probably recognize at least 20 different trains/shinkansen by sight. In Japanese, he tends to say more basic things such as, “Dako suru” (for pick me up please) and phrases such as, “Densha hayai ne!” If you want to know more about how we are encouraging his language development, let me know! I’ve been thinking of doing a post on it.

Eating: Ever since getting his molars in around 18 months we really haven’t had any issues with eating! He goes through phases, as everyone does, with what he likes to eat, but overall he has been pretty consistent. He eats well at home and especially at school! At home, he now eats at a weaning table instead of his high chair. I loved the Baby Bjorn high chair for a long time but it seems he has grown out of it. He would perhaps like a booster type chair but we aren’t sure yet if we will take the plunge and buy a Stokke Trip Trap type one or not…especially with two new little ones on the way to buy high chairs for as well!

He also eats using a regular spoon, fork, and training chopsticks. He occasionally uses a kids plate with multiple sections but recently he’s been enjoying just using our normal plates and bowls. He also drinks from a glass cup at home or a straw water bottle when we are out and about.

One huge change in his eating that happened just after his second birthday is that he weaned from breastfeeding. You can read about our weaning story here.

Likes: Trains, trains, and more trains…what more can I say? He’s obsessed! In the last month I think we have exclusively read books about shinkansen, train crossings, and train lines. He knows the names and can recognize about 20 different trains/shinkansens (at 2y3m). We got him a Brio train set for his birthday and he has played with it every day since!

He has also become much more independent since we moved to our new apartment. I have tried to set it up so that he can do many things by himself (inspired by the Montessori method). He loves to do things such as wash his own hands, brush his teeth, help with laundry, baking and cooking, and vacuuming.

Painting with a friend at school

Dislikes: As with any toddler, he hates being told no! Who doesn’t I guess…however in the last month I have seen meltdowns with increasing frequency and duration. Usually they are caused by being hungry or tired though and having to wait to be fed. I’ve recently started getting up before him to prepare breakfast and have it waiting because otherwise he is not the nicest to be around. Hangry toddler = not my fave! On days he has school he is also quite exhausted by the end of the day and not so agreeable. Having snacks to entertain him the whole way home and dinner partially or fully prepped for once we get there has helped a lot. I hope he’s a bit more flexible by the time the new babies come because I don’t think all of this will be possible with two newborns to look after!

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