TJ has always been attached to a blanket. Didn't matter what type of blanket, just a blanket. We would take a blanket away and he would simply find a new blanket to carry around the house. Over my vacation from work, I tripped over that blanket (a toddler bed sized blanket of Elmo flying a plane) a million times. I decided that Elmo had to leave. I simply waited for TJ to leave the room and then I made Elmo disappear into the deep dark back corner of our closet. When TJ asked for the blanket at nap time I simply said, "You don't need him." Later that night TJ asked Ayron for Elmo and Ayron honestly replied, "I don't know where he went." Ayron had no clue I had taken Elmo away. TJ hasn't asked for Elmo since. That was two weeks ago.
About a week ago I decided that since the removal of Elmo went so smoothly I should work on TJ's thumb sucking habit. I had noticed that since Elmo disappeared the thumb sucking had decreased, but I wanted it GONE. I started putting band aids on TJ's thumbs at night and one week later, thumb sucking free! He hasn't even tried to suck his thumbs. I have been keeping an eye on him and I think we are in the clear. For every day he goes without thumb sucking, he gets to add a sticker to his calendar. Once he gets enough stickers (we haven't determined the exact amount) he will get an "adventure" with Mommy and Daddy. We are thinking of taking him to Chucky Cheese, God help our souls.
Since he had been doing so well, we decided to give him a little reward. We took him to Penske (where Ayron works) to see "Daddy's monster trucks." TJ thinks that Daddy gets to drive "monster trucks" all day, he couldn't be further from the truth, but why smash a little boy's dreams. We had to go to Penske to pick up Ayron's paycheck anyway, so we took TJ along. When we got to the lot, Ayron was able to take TJ into a semi cab and drive it in a circle around the lot. TJ was in heaven!
I can only hope that we have permanently broken those two habits.