Around his second birthday, or maybe even a little before, Charlie learned to climb out of his crib. Into the summer and fall, he became very adept at doing so. Then, one day when he was very tired and wanting to sleep, I was distractedly changing Evie's diaper and heard a big thud. I ran into his room and found him plunged headfirst into his crib. He was quite proud of himself, and after that, became quite adept at climbing in and out of his crib. Clint and I loved to watch him (via the video monitor) very carefully climbing out of his crib, finding his favorite books, sliding them through the slats of his crib, and then hoisting himself back in to read. Every morning, his crib was crammed with lovie, blankie, stuffed animals, and more books than you could imagine. Sometime in the fall, when he began to climb in and out constantly, and had almost no sleeping room left in the crib, I decided we needed a solution. So I put his crib mattress on the floor and presto! We had a big boy room. :) Charlie was thrilled, but Clint and I thought a more permanent solution might be in order. So while the kids stayed with my parents for a few days after Christmas, Clint and I drove up to Ikea and created a real big boy room. Charlie's reaction when he saw it was so incredibly gratifying. He has loved, loved, loved this room and is absolutely thrilled with his new bed. He could not believe that his sheets were covered in trucks (this revelation resulted in lots of dancing and excited yelling), he loved his new chair, night stand, and lamp, but his very favorite thing was...
...these vehicle photos I framed for him. They are (1) PawPaw and Charlie in PawPaw's green tractor, (2) Charlie sitting on a yellow backhoe, and (3) Charlie driving the red Jeep in La Vernia. [His first question was "where is the Ranger picture??" But when I explained that we would try to get a good one soon, he was content with that solution.] It is difficult to overemphasize the extent of his (and Evie's) excitement over these photos. Every evening, they insist on being held up close to inspect them, and wildly point to and talk about each one. Charlie's favorite is the Jeep (he has always had a soft spot for that Jeep), and Evie's is the tractor (she loves to point and say "tractor!"). Charlie has been elevated to celebrity status in Evie's eyes as a result of these photos; a position that he likely finds quite appropriate.
The Dohertys sent us this Thomas the Train tent, tunnel and ball (now stuffed animal) pit for Christmas, and it has found a permanent home in the new big boy room. The first thing the kids do every time we come upstairs is run into Charlie's room and dive into the pit. They love it!
Charlie's reading nook (more of a frantically-pull-books-off-the-wall nook).
Both of my kids love to read, which makes me so happy. Evie is going for her favorite book here, Harry the Dirty Dog.
Love that genuine smile!
The great thing about a little sister is that they get as excited about your stuff as you do. I still get the benefit of this genuine, loving enthusiasm from my sister, and I love seeing it replicated in Evie (who reminds me of Meg in so many ways...she is just the perfect little sister). She already thinks Charlie's new room is just about the coolest place in the world, and if she ever disappears, I can usually guarantee that I'll find her curled up in his bed with a book.
And finally, I thought the bedside table would solve our books-crowding-the-bed problem, but apparently not. This is how I find Charlie every night when I go up to turn off the light: surrounded by his favorite books. :)
Sleep tight, big boy!