Friday, June 24, 2011

"drama" should be her first name. last name? queen.

when i first had bella, i felt like i had entered the part of my life i was made for. infancy came so naturally. i never wavered,  never questioned. honestly, i wasn't as tired as i expected to be, though i wasn't running any marathons. it felt so right. 

look at that sweet face! that 5 month old was perfect.

then bella turned one.

she has always been active, doing everything early and then running with it to the extreme. but toddler hood presented a whole new ballgame. when bella was around 15 months, i started slipping. i forgot stuff. i was tired all of a sudden, even though she was finally sleeping 11 hours through the night. i couldn't handle everything. i started to break. i just felt overwhelmed and out of my element. 

i know baby, i'm crying too.

bella would get herself into trouble, but was too young, seemingly to effectively discipline with timeouts and reasoning (ever try to reason with a one year old? it simply feels ridiculous. like trying to reason with your toilet which, by the way, also is ridiculous.). she would run into the street with reckless abandon. diaper changes became nightmares, especially in public, where she would flail wildly and scream as though i were branding her. putting on clothes? forget it. i may as well have laid a searing hot chain link vest on her skin. and that's not the worst of it. everything was a fight-getting into her car seat, getting out of her car seat, getting into her stroller, getting out of her stroller. when i put her oatmeal in the microwave, she would crumple to the floor, weeping as though her heart was breaking. 90 seconds of pure agonizing hunger that she could not overcome and would surely lead to her death.

to say she was a drama queen is quite an understatement. 

at 18 months, i think we are finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. she listens a little better. i tell her no or to go do something and she actually does it, most of the time with a smile on her face. she brings me diapers and lays on the ground for a change. she picks out her clothes and actually lets me put them on, though now getting them off seems to key her in that it's almost bed time. 

i'm not naive enough to believe that the terrible toddler days are over. i know we still have plenty ahead of us. but i hope that they will be fewer and farther between. she is getting better at calmly communicating what she wants, although she forgets a lot and resorts to screaming. 

mostly though, i feel like i'm gaining back some control. i never understood how kids could grow up to be such sassy, bossy people. but i'm pretty sure that somewhere around 18 months, their parents probably had a nervous breakdown and never recovered. fortunately, i think my resolve is a little stronger than hers, and i will hopefully come out on the other side victorious. 

we shall see...........

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

18 month brag post

i'm not really sure where the time went. but last week, bella turned 18 months. it seems like it should be a big age to celebrate for some reason. before she was born, i felt bad that she would have a birthday so close to christmas. i decided she should have half birthdays instead, so she would feel special. yeah. that never happened. i'm pretty sure that was not my best idea ever.

so, here is the obligatory 18 month old stat post. enjoy.

bella and her cousin at the pool
height: 32 1/2 inches (70%)
weight: 25 lbs 1.5 oz (75%)
head: 19 1/4 (95%) 

as you can see, she still has a big ol' noggin. it just looks smaller now because she has so much hair, i think. 

her hair is still blond and curly. eyes brown. she gets tan like me-quick and dark, even covered in sunscreen. she kind of looks like a little surfer chick when she's been in the sun a lot. 

her favorite toys are her little people, her leap pad, her baby doll with accessories and her trains. her favorite clothing store (read: mommy's favorite kids clothing store) is still gymboree and target. her favorite books are daddy's girl by garrison keillor, the cooper books with cooper the bear from hallmark, and where's my mommy by sarah smith. she loves reading and i will often find her laying on her back with a book up in the air, acting like she is reading. 

bella, showing mommy her colors


she can eat with a fork and spoon and drink from a big girl cup, which she now prefers to sippy's. she can point to most of her colors, and count to 4. when we sing the abc's, she sings along on key and in time, though she doesn't really say the actual letters. until you get to q. we usually stop and let her say it. 

she loves to be outside, and just today came up to me and said, "shi-shi's on. inna go ow-sy" (shoes on. i wanna go outside). she has spent lots of time in the pool this summer and she can hold her breath and go underwater and can ever kick and pull like she is swimming. she jumps off the side to me, but only after telling me to "waaaaaay" (wait) while she hold up one finger, and then counting to 3. 

she has lots of words and she is putting together 2 and 3 word sentences, and sometimes more (like today). she is very expressive and lets you know exactly what she is thinking or what she wants. you would think that would make my life easier. alas, no. now, i just constantly have a 1 year old bossing me around. "ina schrawberry! ina schrawberry!" "go ow-sy!!!" "duke in baroom!!! duke in baroom!! AHHHHH!" (duke's in the bathroom! she is such a tattle tale!) and lately, when i don't move fast enough, she picks up my feet and starts moving them forward. i don't know where she gets her bossiness from....mother, don't say a word! 

at the lake
but, as bossy as she has become, she is also very VERY sweet. she hugs and kisses all the time. if you tell her "i love you" she blows you a kiss. she walks up to you when you are doing just about anything and will kiss your leg, your arm, your back, anything that is close to her. 

she is still rear facing in the car seat and sleeps in her crib. she mostly puts herself to sleep at night and sleeps all night long. she still is wearing cloth diapers, but we recently bought a potty and have been working on her sitting on it and talking about going "pee pee in the potty". we are doing a no pressure potty training, meaning we don't have any expectations as far as a timeline, and i don't make her sit for hours on the potty. 

i guess that's about it. she just went down for a nap, so that means i need to clean up the wake of her destruction. if i thought it was bad when she was one, it's 10 times worse 6 months later. 

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

dear blog.

dear blog,

i have neglected you. when we started out, i wrote every day. i was passionate about unloading my thoughts and sending them into the blogosphere. and then i started writing every other day. things were getting busier around here and i justified cutting back. html doesn't have feelings, afterall. but then, i only seldom wrote, when i had time. which, in the world of toddler hood, is practically non existent. so i drifted away. letting go of our little fling. it was fun while it lasted.

but then words jumbled around in my mind. sometimes, complete thoughts would actually form, which had become somewhat of a rarity. i wanted to write again, but it had been so long, i felt like i would have to explain and offer excuses. and that just seemed so trite. so i stayed away.

but now, i think, i am back. i can't promise that things will be the same as they were before, blog. now, my time on the computer is usually spent video chatting with joel, who is half a world away, and honestly, i don't think about you much then. every other moment of the day is spent on the phone with insurance companies and lawyers and realtors or chasing around the busiest toddler mankind has ever known. these sound like excuses maybe, still. but, blog? this is what happens when you are aan adult (and a real person). you have more important things. you find different things that make you happy. you grow up. you move on. you change and evolve.

for now, just be happy that i think of you often and i will be writing more. but don't get greedy, blog. it's not all about you anymore.