Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Soaking It Up

We are coming off of a birthday month high, filled with sweet friends and family, new toys and clothes, and fun outings all in the name of turning TWO. 

Cousins watching Tangled
Wesley outnumbered by the girls
Playing her new piano
Loving her new "princess castle" (aka house)

Two is such a special age. Every day is completely different. She says new words and phrases each day, surprises us with her comprehension (and repetition), and does more and more independently, like climbing the ladder to her slide all by herself. We still have to keep a close eye on her all the time as she lacks fear. She will climb on anything, jump off of everything, and stand on top of a pile of toys she has carefully stacked into a personal platform.

The other day, I was on the phone with the pediatrician trying to schedule her two year old check up. As I verified our insurance and turned around to C echoing "Blue Cross," I found her in the middle of our table, eating a banana she had just gotten from the bowl and peeled.

She keeps me on my toes.

I'm still finding it difficult to believe C is actually two, but then she kindly reminds me with one of her epic tantrums. She is certainly stubborn (a trait she gets from both Mommy and Daddy) with a flare for the dramatic (a trait for which I will have to claim responsibility); and not getting her way often results in a show.

This past week in Kindermusik, everyone was sitting quietly in a circle for story time. C was spinning around in the middle of the circle saying, "weeee. It's fun." In her defense, the activity immediately preceding story time was dancing and playing sand blocks to music. Still, I grabbed her and tried to make her sit still in my lap.

She was not a fan.

When she started to do that toothpick/noodle trick that makes toddlers impossible to hold, I picked her up and took her in the hall to have a chat. We talked about the importance of listening and following directions. When she continued to pitch a fit, I sat her in a chair at the end of the hall, told her she was in "time out" and walked around the corner. 

She said, "bye!"

We went back in the room, got our things, and left.

I refuse to be the mom that lets her child disrupt an experience for others, whether it is a music class or a meal. I was so embarrassed, but I know it's just a part of being two. Plus, it's hard to be mad at her when she looks at me with arms outstretched and says, "Mommy hug."

Tantrums aside, two is pretty fun. Everything is a lesson. Everywhere is a classroom. C is a sponge, soaking up everything we say and do. Watching her learn really is gratifying. Knowing her personality is a direct result of your genetics and your actions rolled into one not only makes you feel pretty great about yourself (when she copies the good traits, of course), but also holds you accountable to the little things you do or say without realizing it. She is a tiny mirror, reflecting the good and the bad, and reminding me to touch up the imperfections on a daily basis.

Spring is finally trying to make its grand entrance and we are loving the weather! Our days are spent mostly outside, either in our back yard or at a park. She asks, "outside?" as soon as we come downstairs in the morning. 

I'm just so thankful for my little sunshine. I had the worst day a couple weeks ago trying to renew my car tag. It was ridiculous. I waited in line for 5 hours, had my info checked twice while in line, and, when I finally made it to the counter, was told (with attitude) I needed my car title, Husband's car title, and my marriage certificate (in addition to the huge file of paperwork I brought with me) in order to renew. I went home with nothing. I was so mad, I couldn't even write about it. I'm still mad. But then, I walked in the door and heard, "Yay, Mommy!" She ran and gave me the biggest hug; and suddenly, I didn't care about my wasted day or the incompetence of Jefferson County. I was just glad to be home.

That's the magic of parenthood. It is rewarding every day. Sure, there are days that are harder than others; but I cannot imagine our lives without C. After a day like that, I used to crave happy hour and a dirty martini. Now, I crave snuggles and Play-doh time. I crave peek-a-boo. I crave a fuzzy blanket and Finding Nemo with my girl. I crave a tiny, sassy, little girl brushing my hair, jumping on my bed, and asking me over and over again if I want to go outside. Her existence makes my days brighter. I just breathe and try to soak it all in, try to memorize her scent, try to commit her little speech imperfections to memory, to cherish how easily she still fits in my lap, my head resting perfectly on hers. 

Life is good.

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