Sunday, February 27, 2011

Happy Birthday to Natalie!

Taken by Maggie to show off her new piggytails
Miss Natalie-New is now two! She celebrated her birthday on Wednesday at daycare. (Reading between the lines = Mama Guilt.) But, I got there in time to see her eat the frosting off her cupcake and open her toy. Then, K, M, and I took her to Chinese for supper, as per her request. And THAT is where she REALLY turned two.

It's been a while since I've heard such a fit over something so small. Natalie refused the high chair and I was fine with that. But when I tried to put her in a booster, she was P. O.'d. Screamed like you wouldn't believe. She did win, in that she knelt on her chair through the meal (it looked so painful!) and I won too because I made her say, "no booster, please" before she could get off the booster seat. (Just appease me and pretend that I won, too, okay?) And fits like that have been pretty constant since then, over what clothes to wear, shoes to wear, which doll to take to bed, what to eat for snack or supper, even which hair bow to put in her hair. As a dear friend would say, Natalie just got her wheels.

The girl seriously never stops moving!
Makes getting a picture impossible.
But she isn't all sass; there's plenty of sweet in there, too. She has been giving the best hugs and kisses. And her giggle is just awesome, especially with the little bit of growl that comes with it. Why, yes, I said growl. My two-year-old daughter loves to growl. She growls in anger, in joy, when playing, when mad... she growls.

She also is really starting to talk. We have heard a lot of "Noooooo" this week with a few "yessssss" thrown in there. She's reached a stage where she loves to repeat whatever is being said, so we're trying to take advantage of that and boost her vocab. She'll say "wa-dat" and point to about everything. Phrases that are perfectly clear include "I want that" and "Ni-night" and all her sisters' names and "shoes" and "baby" and "juice"... all the important things.

The girl doesn't stop moving. I swear she even runs in her sleep! And, she doesn't like to walk; she just runs from place to place, like a little weeble wobble. One of my parenting goals was to get my kids to 2 without stitches, and I thought for sure Natalie was the one who'd break my luck on that one. But somehow, she's made it to two without stitches or a broken bone. Considering how she climbs and jumps and runs, it's amazing.

Healthwise, she's still in a cycle of illness-antibiotic-1 week recovery-illness. I'm just hoping in a month, when it starts warming up, she can finally kick this thing and get stronger. None of it's critical, thankfully, just colds and ear infections and the like. But it doesn't slow her down any.

A moment of shyness while celebrating
her birthday with G'ma S,
whose birthday was Saturday
She's also determined to be a Big, as Lainie puts it. Natalie helps unload the dishwasher (spoons, plastic cups and bowls), move dirty laundry to the laundry room, pick up toys, and set the table. It's not that I'm a slave driver employing child labor to ease my day... wait, maybe I am. Truly, she wants to do it and throws a fit if someone beats her to it. (Refer back to the second paragraph of this post.) She wants to play what they are playing, do what they are doing, and get what they are getting. I think it's a sign of things to come, for years to come.

Natalie-new isn't so new anymore, and she doesn't look like a baby anymore. I think of the changes coming in the next 6 months, the two biggest being a  move out of the crib and hopefully potty training. It reminds me to take the time to read one more bedtime book and snuggle one more minute. Because that minute is just too short.

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