My little girl is 16 months old (well, and like 8 days, because I’m behind on this…) and she could not be more awesome. She’s been surprising me every day with new words and signs, adorable mannerisms and even spontaneous hugs and kisses.
This past month has been incredible for my girl.
Words, Words, Words – This morning she said broccoli. Perfectly. She said paper earlier. She clearly understands tons of stuff, and follows simple directions like “put that back where it goes please” or “Find your polar bear!” She looks more carefully at the pictures in books now, and points to different things in the illustrations, waiting for me to tell her what each one is. She knows things have names and she wants to know what everything is called. When she looks at the food/mealtime page of this book (her favorite page of course), she stares intently at the pictures, and signs to herself, “water,” “food,” “fruit,” “cheese,” “banana,” and so forth. She says “bay-bee!” or “buh-bay-bee!” when she sees other toddlers and babies, in life or in pictures. She knows her doll is “baby.” I wish I could get into her head and listen in on all of her thoughts, because I’m sure it would be really exciting, but soon enough she’ll really be able to tell me what she’s thinking. I want to know if she dreams, and what she dreams about.
Here, she’s signing “fork,” because she wants to get started on our Thanksgiving mini-feast.
Pottying – She went through a couple of weeks where she would tell me with sign language (or sometimes by getting her potty and bringing it to me) that she either had to pee or that she JUST did. I got all excited and thought maybe we could do Real Potty Training, but then teething hit hard again (she’s currently cutting 3 molars) and that went out the window with the surprise “Teething poos” and distracted baby. She is still using the potty on and off, sometimes telling me, and sometimes upon my guess… but it’s our normal “part time elimination communication.” Well not part-time. Just a lazy laid-back version I guess. I’m not obsessed with catching every pee, but we do pretty well. I’m hoping that when these molars are in, she’ll get a good break before canines come, and we can do some potty focus then.
She usually requires some sort of “task” to make her want to stay on the potty. Left, she was “writing” on a business card using a popsicle stick. Right, she was wrapping her toy lion with a clean diaper insert. Other times, she listens to me read stories or watches videos (of herself) on my iPhone.
Nursing – I think she’s probably a pretty typical toddler here, regardless of the presence or absence of my milk during pregnancy. When she is sad or upset or hurt, she wants to nurse, even if I’m the one who upset her (taking away something she wanted to play with – like scissors, or telling her she ate the last banana, or whatever). She will nurse for a few seconds and then want to go play again. Other times, she wants to nurse longer and cuddle and occasionally she falls asleep. Before naps and bed, she only has a minute or so at the breast before she rolls over to get her sleepy sheep, baby, and pacifier. In the morning we have lots of cuddles and nurse for a long time, but instead of a long block of nursing, it’s intermittent. She’ll nurse for several minutes, then sit up and play with a book or a toy, or get a sip of water, and then nurse again, and so forth. To me all of this seems like normal wonderful toddler self-weaning. By weaning I don’t mean I think she’s going to quit anytime super-soon. I just mean this is part of the gradual process… weaning begins when anything other than breastmilk is introduced, and ends when the baby no longer nurses at all. It’s a process that can take years, or only a few months.
Sweet nursing toddler feet.
Curiosity – Anneliese wants to peek into the kitchen trash can (lifting the lid), the recycling bin (same as the trash can), toilets, cupboards, and drawers. I’ve been telling her to close the cupboards right away, and so far she hasn’t taken anything out. I’m looking for solutions for where to store things though, because there are no handles on my cupboards and those little plastic push-it-down-to-open-it childproofy thingies don’t work very well and would be annoying to install, etc etc. I’d rather just teach her to leave that stuff alone, but in the meantime, I don’t really want her eating dishwasher soap while I pee. Do you have a central location for all of your cleaning things, or do you have them all over? I have bathroom cleaning things in the bathrooms, and kitchen stuff in the kitchen, laundry things in the laundry room, and the rest (and “refills”) in the hall closet. It’s convenient to think “oh this is dirty” and be able to clean it without having to leave the room to get materials to do so. But hmm… curious toddler. What do you personally do?
“Helping” with the dishes. Oh, and she brought me the wings and her shoes to put on her.
She’s often very focused when she plays, exploring the possibilities of each toy.
Teeth – One molar is through. The other 3 have been working their way slowly out. All of them have little points that have cut through her gums, but they are sure taking their dear sweet time. I wish they’d give her a break.
Love you, baby girl. You are turning into such a cool kid.