Thank you everyone who has sent me messages and comments on the transitional problems we're having. So many great ideas! I think one of the first things I'm going to do is hunt down some more toys for him and just it make it feel more homey for him.
We may also be moving flats soon to one with hardwoods floors that faces the garden. Right now we have all white carpet (yeah! with a toddler!) and face the street. There's a primary school across the street and the 45 minute a day estimate we were given for the recess noise was about 2 hours understated. So anyways, I thought if we move flats, maybe I can do some things to make the next room more *his* - though I'm not sure how just yet.
Also, I think I'm going to write down an official schedule for us. This is not something I've ever done for us before, but I think given the situation it will help. I'll keep you posted on what works and what doesn't in case you ever find yourself in a similar situation.
Wanted to post some more pics of Charlie with his pride and joy... his new helmet. LOL Seriously, I think he may like the helmet more than the scooter! He wants to wear it everywhere and has been taking it in the crib with him to sleep. He kind of likes to have the scooter near his crib/bed too, though. All the better to go rolling into Mom and Dad's room with.
We bought his scooter at this adorable kid's store in St. John's Wood called Igloo Kids. That's where I got his red wellies, too. They have insanely cute but expensive clothes, some really nice toys, disappointingly few books and they do haircuts in the basement. Funny.
Unrelated side topic: I just realized when I went to the Igloo web site that they are a small chain. That keeps happening to me here in London. I think I find the neatest, cutest little spot and think Wow! I've discovered this totally cool and original place! Then I find out there are 4 or 5 of them in London. London reigns supreme in the small chain arena. And I am never as cool and original as I hope.
So after we stopped for coffee at Gail's - another small chain I originally thought was only one awesome location I "discovered" - we went to the park for a bit and Charlie of course talked about all the scooters. That was all it took for Brad to want to get him one.
Charlie actually already has a scooter at home, so it was kind of hard to justify buying it. But it will keep him very busy the rest of the time we are here and they are so popular that if we want to sell it for a big chunk of what we paid for it, we should have no problem. I was not able to find him a second hand one because they sell so quickly on the UK version of Craig's List (Gumtree). It actually folds down quite small, so maybe we will just take it home and he can always have friends over to scoot!
So we went to the store, got him fitted for a helmet and he picked out the black scooter. It's technically for a 5 or 6 year old, but Charlie didn't want the blue one meant for 3 to 5 year olds. The only difference we could tell is that the one for the older kids a tiny bit heavier and the handle is adjustable for height. I'm not sure why Charlie was so taken with the black one.
I lamented whether we were doing the right thing in getting him the version for older kids and Brad pointed out that no way was Charlie leaving with any scooter other than the black one. And he was right. We were getting it to make him happy, why make him sad to leave the one he really wanted?
Here he is outside of Igloo with his scooter and helmet:
Charlie rode that scooter the whole way home (it took forever) and he and I spent a large chunk of the afternoon in the garden watching him practice. He's getting pretty quick on it, but is still figuring out the steering. He'll jump off if he's about to run into something instead of steering around it.
He really is so proud of it though... and possessive. Of course other little kids in the playground want to check it out, just as he was doing before he got one. Once I reassure him they are just looking and it is not going home with them, he's usually fine with it.
I think our MacLaren stroller is going to be feeling pretty lonely soon with all the attention we are paying the scooter. Once Charlie gets really comfortable on the scooter, we won't need the stroller very often at all. It's just sitting in the hall right now, feeling rejected.
Well, if you're looking for us, we are probably back in the garden, perfecting some scooter skills and terrifying the neighbors' cats. :)