18 Months Old

It's The Nugget's year and a half birthday today.   I cannot believe how the time has flown.  I mean, a YEAR and a HALF.  I still look at her sometimes and expect to see this:


And I am sometimes surprised to look into a little girl's face and not a baby's face.


So, in honor of her half-birthday, to The Nugget, I say this:

I am so very blessed to be amazed, challenged and loved by you, my beautiful daughter, every day.
At age 18 months, you definitely have a voice of your own.  We love this about you, though it can sometimes be frustrating.  You know what you want and when and how.  This can lead to tears when we can't understand or can't provide what you want, but these periods are generally short-lived.  Your Daddy and I want you to be a strong, independent woman with your own voice in the world and we  encourage you to use that voice of yours.  To help in that department, you are learning vocabulary at an amazing rate and now use many 3 and even some 4 word sentences.

We have had a busy summer of adventure together.  You have had your first trip to the zoo, joined the Children's Museum and gone there on several occasions, attended your first rock concert at the Children's Museum with Jenny Devoe playing.  Daddy had to stop you from rushing the stage:



We have had trips to the state fair, pony rides with family, long walks on the canal and tons of time swimming, playing in the sand and, in general, playing outside.  You have loved every minute of our adventures!

You love right now:  Mickey Mouse, Elmo, and Barney (not necessarily in that order).  You love to eat tomatoes (you say, "May-nose") and especially like to pick them from the vines in our yard.  You enjoy closing doors of all kinds.  You love to read and will request most books by name.  Current favorites include Poppy and Max (which you call "Mack") and Hillside Lullaby (which you call "Coo Coo" because of the birds saying it in the story).  You also will request most every night that I sing Baby Mine to you after I read you stories and you let me rock you.  There have been periods where you have not wanted to be rocked, and I am thankful that you are currently in a more cuddly mode.

Your best friends are Piggy, your Piglet doll with whom you sleep, and Frolic, our family dog.  You have started to pretend more and more and will pretend to feed Piggy a bottle or make him shout "hooray" and clap.  You stick like glue to Frolic sometimes which makes her a bit nervous, but she adores you and especially loves to wait at your side during meals for the falling bits of food!

You have graduated from a high chair to a booster seat at the table, something you think is especially cool.  You wake in the morning and, once hungry, sit at your seat demanding, "bagel" and "milk".  You really are a great eater though the typical toddler trademark of having some more cautious tendencies is creeping in.  You make Daddy and I laugh by demanding cake all of the time, but your favorite thing to eat in all the world is berries of any kind.  Next up is mandarin oranges.  After that, you'll pretty much go for anything at most times.

All in all, my love, parenting you has been the highlight of my life.  You are an absolute delight who helps me remember to stop and enjoy the small things.  You help me remember that there is value in just playing in the dirt.  I cannot thank you enough for being exactly who you are and for the chance to be your Mommy.  I am looking forward to the years unfolding ahead and hoping that they don't rush by too quickly.  I love you!

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