Big: "He's a good egg, you know. But eben good eggs smell weally bad sometimes."
Three Hundred and Six - 22.10.14
With your physical pursuits at the forefront of my mind, it almost slipped my mind to note your newest verbal achievements. Your beloved boobie is now affectionately known as "boop", and is always requested with an accompanying finger point. Matchbox cars, or anything with wheels really, moves along the ground to a low toned growling "brrrr" sound. But my favourite? The elephant sound. The "brrr" remains, but this time it's high pitched and attached to a swinging arm trunk. Oh, the cute. All of it. Right there, little lady.
Three Hundred and Seven - 23.10.14
Today marks eleven months of your earthside adventures. As I sit here crafting invitations to your very first birthday I struggle to fathom how quickly time flies and doesn't simultaneously. It's a contradiction that many speak of, but most fail to understand.
Being an (over) organiser, I'll admit to feeling a little pang of anxiety at the thought of not having posted these out with only a few short weeks to go. But for whatever reason, I can't bring myself to do it. Not now. Not just yet.
For now, I'm set to stay right here - in the present. Here, both past and future do not exist, and I can enjoy you as you are in this moment. A sweet babe, who knows only of love and sunshine, and exudes this in return as a result.
Three Hundred and Eight - 24.10.14
Fifteen. That's the number of stairs you climbed today, unaided.
The gate at the bottom was left open, and you saw - and took - this as a golden opportunity. Freedom. Thankfully, Daddy saw your determined eyes fix on your desired destination, and followed a step or two behind you, just in case. But you needed him not. Fifteen steps. Piece of cake.
Three Hundred and Nine - 25.10.14
I saw teenage you today. Just a glimpse. It all started about a week ago, when your once gleeful affirmative responses transformed into a grunting "yep". As a lover of language from way back, I'll admit to shuddering at your sliding vocabulary. And considering how often it's snuck in to your speech, I feel like I'm almost continuously convulsing.
But this is not where the story ends. Oh no. Foolishly, I requested a kiss from you. On most occasions, you will quite willingly oblige. Sometimes you shake your head cheekily and feign disinterest, but you do always comply. Always.
Not today. Today, my puckered lips were left hanging, and instead, we're met with:
Big: "I don't fink so. I'll be in my room if you meed me, okay?"
Ummm? Okay then.
Three Hundred and Ten - 26.10.14
We baked some mini cupcakes today, you and I. According to your summation, they were "chocolate-y and delicious for big girls", which is all kinds of wonderful as I smuggled a whole avocado in them while you weren't looking.
In the kitchen, you were in your element. A combination of helping and mess making. These are the times that toddlers dream about. And boy, were you appreciative. So much so, in fact, that you even thought to tell me so.
Big: "I love you, Mumma, and not just 'cause you gib me food."
Given that I had just fed you chocolate, that's not suspicious at all, is it?
Three Hundred and Four - 27.10.14
Now that you're on the move, we are too. Lifting things higher, finding new homes for breakables, adjusting to life as it is with you now. You get a kick out of racing me - or your sister - to the untouchables every.single.time. You giggle and squeal as you worm as fast as your little body knows how to move. Calling you a "cheeky monkey" or another other variation of cheeky adds fuel to your acceleration. It's a race that you don't often win, but to you, it's all a part of the fun. You sure are a wild one, Tiny. And I know that this is just the beginning.
Two tubby hands. She reaches. Carrot shaped fingers. She pulls. Flat palms thumping. She climbs.
Your progressive movement should not be surprising to me, but it is. You are my constant reminder of difference. Of uniqueness. This is foreign my mothering journey. Your sister did.not.move. Until she did. Just like that. But with you? It's constantly disappearing and reappearing and change. It happens quickly, even when I feel like my eyes are permanently fixed on you... which of course, they just can't be. That you see and you want... you do and you get.
It's curiosity and determination and passion. You amaze me. Astound me. Delight me. You, my littlest love, are truly wonderful.
Two Hundred and Ninety Nine - 15.10.14
There are few things I know about toddler, but many I am learning. Parenting you is a journey of discovery. And the path? Twisted. Roundabout. Steep. But following every incline, there is a decent. It's fast paced and equal parts thrilling and terrifying. It's joy and it's frustration, sometimes simultaneously.
Big: "I do switch my listening ears on, Mumma, but sometimes dey just don't wike what dey hearing."
Inhale. Exhale. Today, you've paused for a moment (or twelve) behind the gate marked 'testing'. But part of the journey it is. And it's a road worth travelled, especially with you.
Three Hundred - 16.10.14
When met with resistance, how long to you continue with a single, unchanged method? Do you meet the challenge with persistence? Do you stay and fight, or take flight? No, really?
For you, and for me, it's a juggle. A situation dependant dance, as we find balance together. And today that meant the return of the cot bedside after one short (long) week. But I refuse to see this as a failure. Rather, it is the result of timing that wasn't quite right. For both of us, actually.
We're set to recover from nights of too little sleep, full of too many disturbances snuggled close. Touching distance close. And it'd be dishonest to say that I won't enjoy every sweet second that co-sleeping gifts.
Three Hundred and One - 17.10.14
I was met with a wriggling worm at my feet. It was a happy one, whose face beamed and eyes smiled. She used her hands to move from belly to seated upright, and then to climb my legs and pull herself to a stand. Balancing on her two pudgy feet, she released one hand and placed it in mine. Then the other, both reaching above her little head. Consciousness next moved to her feet. Left, then right. First a wee shuffle, before graduating to full foot lifts - steps - with hands gripped tightly in mine. Every so often, she'd pause for a moment, glancing upward, faced scrunched with delight. How proud she was of herself, and so she should be. While the little worm will remain a while more yet, her transformation has most certainly begun.
Three Hundred and Two - 18.10.14
Through the eyes of a child, the world has no bounds. There's many a thing to be seen, to be touched, to be explored. At times, the demands of the situation push the babe out of their comfort zone. Encourage them to try something new, something untried and untested. For you, the added obstacle of height resulted in you mastering the traditional crawl today. It was shaky at first, but soon turned slow and steady.
However, with you, and most other little beings, I suppose, feelings of curiosity goes beyond the realm of desire. They are instinctual. Most often, a matter of urgency. Desperate times call for desperate measures, and despite the new crawling action you added to your repertoire, there are other, more efficient means of movement. And with that, you stop, drop and worm.
Three Hundred and Three - 19.10.14
Dr Big is in the house today and there's lots of fixing to be done. Broken bones. Sore heads. Scratches and blood. No job too small and certainly none to big to be fixed by a bandaid.
Big: "Knock, knock. I'm at da door, Mumma. You meed to say, 'who's dere?'"
Mumma: "Who's there?"
Big: "It's me. Dr. Big. I'm here to fix all da fings."
Mumma: "Of yes, of course. I have a terrible pain in my back. Can you help me?"
Big: "How 'bout your knee is sore 'cause I onwy hab fings for fixing knees, not backs, okay?"
Three Hundred and Four - 20.10.14
Today you went to see the optometrist for a check up. It's the third time you've been, and it might well be one of the most fun things you've ever done. You get to sit in the big chair all by your very own self. You've mastered the mechanics of the exam chair too; pressing your nose lifts it up and it lowers once your right ear lobe is pulled, if you were wondering. You wear special glasses, locate shapes, play with finger puppets and make funny faces.
Your vision is perfect. Your behaviourexemplary. And our optometrist? Ahh-mazing. Even you think so.
Big: "I weally wike Dr Norm. He's got big eyes so he can see mine and fix dem. He's pretty helpful, I fink."