I know I've been off the radar lately when it comes to blogging. Sure, things have been busy as always, but I think I've been away mainly because I've been spending most of my free time reading books. Lots and lots of them! On top of that, we've had nice springtime weather and I have a little girl who has rediscovered how much fun it is to play outside. And so, I haven't found much time for writing or, sadly, reading blogs this month, but I'm going to try to ease back into it slowly but surely.
Since it's been a while, I thought I'd write a (relatively) quick update on Lily since she hit another milestone this month -- turning 18 months old on March 21. Life has been good lately, and I'm realizing what a fun stage we've moved into with our growing toddler. She loves to run and play, especially outdoors, and is such a sweet, joyful girl! It makes me very happy that my girl still loves books. Each and every day we read dozens and dozens of books. She never seems to get tired of it and of course I love holding her in my lap and reading stories. As much fun as we have together during the day, I'm pretty positive that the highlight of Lily's day is around 4:15 PM -- when her daddy gets home. My oh my, you have never seen a happier child in your life!
We just had Lily's 18-month checkup with her pediatrician yesterday, so here are her "stats:" She weighs almost 26 pounds (75th percentile) and is 33 inches tall (90th percentile). Lily recently cut her third molar, which was tooth #11, so her smiles now show a mouth full of pearly whites. She is a healthy, growing girl who loves to eat her fruit and veggies, which makes me so very proud. I was afraid that as Lily got older she might become more and more picky with food, but she is still a wonderful little eater.
Sleep had been a struggle for us for a terribly long time. It seems that we had a pretty good sleeper until she turned 7 or 8 months or so, and then we began to have trouble. Night time routines were generally pretty smooth but Lily would wake up at least two or three times a night and want to be rocked back to sleep or simply held. Nap times were a challenge, too, because she never wanted to be put down. We knew that we needed to make a change, so we began working with Lily a few weeks ago to try to get her to fall asleep (and stay asleep) in her bed. I never dreamed it would have been so hard for me to give up rocking my baby, but it was! I found it much harder than giving up nursing. I knew it was for the best, though, and I'm so happy with where we are now. It may have taken 18 months, but we now have a girl who walks to her room ready to get in her bed after bath, stories, prayers, and cuddles. We put her to bed around 8 PM and we don't hear a peep until around 8 AM. Finally, we have a much happier, well-rested household!
Lily has been trying to say lots of new words lately (at least making an attempt), but the ones we hear most often are: Mama, Dada, hi, uh-oh, oh wow!, oh yeah!, up, all done, all better, banana, night-night. She also knows several animal sounds, but her favorites are bow wow, meow, and moo. Lily still signs "more," "all done," "eat," and "please," and she shakes her finger when I tell her "no, no, no." She occasionally says a few extended family members' names, too, if we've been around them for a weekend or so. Sometimes I worry that there hasn't been a really big language explosion yet, but I know she's doing just fine and is steadily learning new words. It certainly amazes me how much she understands lately.
One of my favorite things to watch her do is hand motions -- to songs like the Itsy-Bitsy Spider or Zacchaeus, or some motions that we've made up to go along with a few of her books. It's too cute, and it's lots of fun to watch her learn.
That's life with our silly, chunky, sweet 18 month old. What a precious and fun age! I'm enjoying it immensely and I'm still so grateful to be her mommy.