23 Months- Noteworthy Stuff

Hula Girl is officially 23 months old today! That means she’ll be two soon. Yikes. I am ready, but also not ready. I sent two pictures of her to a friend today- one from a week ago and one from a year ago… what a difference a year makes!

As you know from yesterday’s post, we are going through major sleep wackiness right about now. Actually, we did get a fantastic 3.5-hour nap yesterday. There were several variables that went into that nap, and I’m pretty sure it won’t be replicated today. First of all, I forgot to close one of her windows. So she had fresh air, outside noises, and the clack of the blinds to keep her company… whoops. Secondly, I spent a good 30 minutes in her room with her before her nap, reading book after book. Third, I implemented some of the things from yesterday- reviewing the “sleep rules” butterflies with her and reminding her that I am not leaving, I am just going to my own bed to nap while she naps. I also reminded her that I will be back when naptime is over. But today I got her down for her nap later than I wanted to, and from the way she was acting, we’re due for a short nap again. She was Miss Crabby Pants all morning. Probably because after yesterday’s fabulous nap, she stayed awake until almost 9 p.m., singing, laughing and talking to herself in her crib. I just can’t win.

On a positive note, Hula Girl has been very into songs, stories, and chants lately. She loves to sing her own versions of songs to us (hand motions included, as always). I love listening to her sing in roomtime. She sings along with her kids’ Bible songs CDs that we play. Yesterday’s song was “Zacchaeus” and she sang, “You…mum… nown!!!” over and over last night while she was falling asleep. Whenever she hears the song about Jesus knocking on our hearts, she runs to the door and “knock, knock, knocks!” She can also recite some of her favorite simple stories, and often tells stories as she’s sitting at the breakfast or lunch table or falling asleep. And chants- don’t give that girl a catchy phrase unless you want to hear it over and over for days. For example, today I said, “Yes, indeedy!” in response to something she asked in the car. She then insisted on hearing me say, “Yes, indeedy!” over and over again all the way home. During roomtime, all I heard was, “Yes… in… deeeedeee!”

Her enunciation is getting better and better. She still can’t say /r/ or /l/. Her /r/ sounds become /y/ and her /l/ sounds become /ee/, /y/, or /d/, depending on where they fall in the word. For example, our cat’s name is Riley, and she calls him “Ya-dee”. She calls lions “yi-yons.” She says little “eedee”. She has just recently started adding in /t/, /v/, and hard /g/. This doesn’t mean that she can say all things super well. She speaks very fast (“veyee wast”) and I frequently have to ask her to repeat herself. But she is getting better and better, and I almost always know exactly what she’s talking about nowadays.

Hula Girl’s appetite, for the first time in her life, leaves something to be desired. She has not been into eating very much lately. She’ll still eat a variety (pretty much anything we put in front of her), but she’ll take like one or two bites and declare herself all done and ask to be excused (“scuze?”) while climbing down from her booster seat. I am not super concerned about this. She is thinning out considerably, does not ask for snacks, and is not consuming terribly large portions of milk. I see no reason to get upset and create yet another battle of wills. If she says she’s done, okay, she’s done. I take her plate. In the event she tried to come back and eat more later (“hummingbird feeding”), I would not allow it. She’ll learn quickly enough that eating is to be done at established mealtimes and snack times.

I am considering switching Hula Girl’s milk to coconut milk. Most pediatricians recommend whole milk until 2 years of age (well, obviously after breastfeeding is over), but at 2, it’s generally okay to switch to 2%, 1%, or even fat-free… whatever the family drinks. Not being a milk-drinker myself, I couldn’t care less whether or not she actually has any more milk ever again in her whole entire life! She had the fattiest stuff at the right time, and now we don’t have to be so incredibly worried about brain development anymore. I am also concerned that dairy milk contains so many antibiotics… that can’t be good for a human. (I’m even considering just going straight to coconut milk for Gelato when he turns one, just because of the antibiotics… yuck!) Anyway, coconut milk has more calcium than dairy milk (yes, it’s added, but it’s still more), and it has the right amount of fats. Plus it’s darn tasty. We’ll see what her pediatrician says at her 2-year well-child visit in June.

Hula Girl is, as always, a climber. I am now having a hard time taking her to the park alone because I can’t climb up the metal ladders after her to ensure her safety. She hasn’t gotten it down perfectly yet, so I know she could fall at any second. It’s tough because when I go with her, I have to stop her part-way up each of the structures and insist that she tries something else for a while. When Jonathan takes her, she can climb as high as she wants and he can follow along just below her. I don’t believe in helping her climb at all. We do not touch her unless she slips off or misses a rung and will actually hit the ground unless we step in. If she’s low enough, I actually just let her fall. Better for her to learn from her mistakes than to be over-confident in her abilities. But I am glad that she’s learning to climb so well this summer, so that next summer when I have both of them at the park alone, I will not have to watch her so carefully. Another area where she can clamber well is on those foam play surfaces inside malls. She can get her little toes to grip any incline and hoist herself up to the top in record speed. I am seriously keeping in mind that she can join the Y’s rock wall climbing club when she’s six. The only downside to this talent is her propensity for climbing things she oughtn’t… such as the hope chest, the back of the couch, the dining room table, the baker’s rack, her dresser, etc. Fortunately she’s got the sense not to try to climb out of her crib. I have seen her considering it a few times, but then she looks down… and loses her nerve. (For now.)

Okay, there’s a good update for you for this month. Next month, it will be a YEARLY update. Whoa. And tomorrow will be a THIRD TRIMESTER update. Whoa again. Time is a flyin’.


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