Well, my Riverbug turned 2 years old this month. I have to say that 2 year old River is even more fun than 1 year old River.
Some of her recent “isms”:
“Sunshine! It smells GOOD!”
“I sleep [in] a toddler bed!”
“I get you another one” (talking to her “Miss Spider” stuffed toy as she tucked the critter into bed and got her a second blanket).
“I remember your dogs” (to our friend who has 3 adorable, tiny dogs that River fell in love with).
“I DON’T like it!” (this is said more often than I’d like, but she says it SO clearly that it’s still hilarious).
“In a Grandma-house!” (whenever we visit my mom).
“Hands are grubby! I need to wash them!”
And I love, love, LOVE how she’s starting to quote her favorite lines from Dr. Seuss and other books. And yes, we still read loads of books on a daily basis.
We have liftoff! Yes, indeed we have TWO-FOOTED, unassisted jumping! She regularly jumps up and down, multiple times in a row, and has jumped off of a slightly elevated surface twice. The funny thing is that her very first jump (at 23 months) was the result of being mad at me for not picking her up. She had asked to be picked up while I was doing something in the kitchen, so I said “Not right now.” She got annoyed at being turned down and loudly said, “Up UP with MAMA!!!”, swung her arms up above her head and completed her first successful, both-feet-off the ground jump. We were so excited that we started clapping, and she forgot to be mad and started practicing her jumps. :)
She’s also getting much taller and actually wears size 2Tclothes! And they don’t fall off! I’m not sure how heavy she is, but we have found 4 children her age that are either her size or smaller, so she’s definitely catching up to her peers in weight and height.
We’re hoping to start swim and dance lessons this month.
She enjoys coloring and drawing circles, lines, and “dots”. We made some lovely Christmas presents for the relatives this year using her art (tutorial to come after the holidays, as we don’t want to spoil the surprise!!). My goal is to do more playdough and gluing projects with her in the near future.
She’s finally starting to eat more like an 18-20 month old. Although she’s still behind her full-term peers, she now eats more solid food than pureed food, and she’s finally able to chew and swallow animal protein like chicken and turkey. She still takes a bottle 2-4 times a day, but we’ve transitioned to a mixture of formula, coconut oil, and milk and are moving toward eliminating the formula. I found some organic, lactose free milk (FINALLY!) at the supermarket of all places, and she seems to enjoy the taste of it and hasn’t had a negative reaction to it just yet. I’m being very, very careful to introduce it slowly, as the last few times I’ve tried to give her milk, her tummy did not appreciate it.
She also loves whole-milk yogurt and organic cheese, edamame, broccoli, pasta, corn, pickles, crackers, rice, eggs (only from Dad’s plate), deli turkey (depending on the day), ice cream, peanut butter (but only from a spoon), and my pureed carrot soup. She’s also still an adventurous “taster” and will try anything off of our plates. I’m taking the “big picture” approach to her diet, making sure that I look at what she eats on a weekly basis rather than freaking out
if when she eats almost nothing or a barely varied diet on a particular day.
She’s definitely more accustomed to adults than to kids her age. She’s slowly getting better at being friendly with other toddlers and babies and is FINALLY interested in playing with them. I find that “neutral territory” (e.g., a location that is NOT one of the toddler’s homes) is much better for conflict-free play dates. She really enjoys playing with other children when they’re not playing with her toys (and this holds true in reverse for the other toddlers we’ve visited). Obviously, she needs to work on sharing, but it’s nice to know that she can be friendly and sweet to other kids.
She’s going through a LOVELY independent phase and is letting lots of other people hold her, hug her, play with, and read to her. This is SO nice when we visit friends since it means that I don’t have her begging me to hold her the entire time.
We’re working on potty training. I haven’t really done a full-court press on this, but I need to. Ugh. I’m just not looking forward to the messes I’ll be cleaning up. She uses the potty several times a day, sometimes before she’s gone in her diaper and other times right after. So, her awareness is definitely there.
She can feed herself using a spoon, fork, or her hands and she can also drink from a small cup, all with reasonable accuracy. SWEET! She can also sort-of blow out birthday-cake candles and LOVES to assist any birthday girl/boy with their candles too. I have the sweetest picture of her “helping Dada” blow out the candles on his cake.
She’s getting better at washing her hands and just this week started to turn the kitchen sink faucet on and off by herself (THANK GOODNESS–I was getting tired of the back and forth). She loves to brush her teeth and wash her hair and body in the shower (not bath–shower). She also dusts the floor with a dustmop and can mist plants with a small spray bottle, and water plants with a small watering can.
Her smile is absolutely electric–I can actually feel mischief and energy radiating from those sparkling eyes. And I love that she’ll occasionally grab my face and kiss my cheek or hug me in a giant outburst of affection, as if she just can’t contain her feelings anymore. And while I look forward to the whiny phase ending, I love the outpouring of verbal expression that comes with this developmental phase. YAY for the terrific twos! :)