Thursday, June 27, 2013

Letter to Greta: 20 Months

Dear Baby Grets,

Where to even begin with the cuteness? Every day, it’s something new: running up to us with arms outstretched, saying “Cull!” for a cuddle; saying “Hi!” and “Bye!” to anyone and everyone, repeatedly and at a volume too high to be ignored; yelling “Kee!” when you stumble on a Squinkie; walking up quietly with your stethoscope and pressing it to our legs while saying “Thump thump…thump thump…” And, of course, your gleeful, joyful, precious, toothy smile.

You are saying new words at a more rapid clip now. Not fully clear—you get the first syllable, but haven’t quite gotten the hang of final consonants—but anyone around you all day (me) can understand what you’re saying. New entries: help, bite, big, fly, chalk, Kee (Squinkie), kie (cookie), cake, snack, round (around), down, out, eye, bird, broom.

You love playing doctor. You love when Lucia paints your nails. You love reading books, and you have an amazingly long attention span, just like your sister always has. You love Squinkies—carrying them around in a bag, cuddling them, dumping them out, making them walk around. You love your Bibi and Lambie, and you often form quick, day-long attachments to other animals as well. You love playing Catch-the-Lambie (or Fox) with Lucia in the backseat of the car, when you just throw the stuffed animal to each other from your carseats. (This is funny to both of you, but often escalates into the kind of hysterical scream-laughing that actually makes it hard to drive.) You’ve become aware that sometimes Lucia gets things that you don’t get—like an after-dinner cookie—and have started to assert yourself. You are, after all, almost two.

And being almost two, you have a short, stubborn fuse and a penchant for passionate, full-throated fits. Taking something away from you; not letting you do something or go somewhere; cutting up a piece of food you wanted to eat whole—the world ends. And you are a challenge at the swimming pool. You can’t focus only on being in the water—you want to run over to the small fish pond, or climb onto a deck chair, or grab things from other people’s blankets. I often chase you at a full sprint: you are quick. As I chase you, I often run past other mothers who are reading magazines in the deck chairs, keeping idle eyes on their school-age kids, and it seems like I’ll never get to the point of not having to stop you or your sister from drinking pool water, picking up old Band-Aids, drowning, etc. It’s all hands-on, all the time right now.

That said—you’re a cutie. A sweet, sweet cutie who blows kisses to puppies and charms the neighbors and plays giggly games with your sister on the porch. The other day over lunch I remarked to Lucia, “Do you remember when we didn’t have Greta? When it was just you, Mommy, and Daddy?” She seemed confused, and then said, “But then we found her!” Yes, we found you, little baby. Lucky, lucky us.

PS: I finally took you in for your 18-month checkup: 25 lbs, 34 ins long. 50th percentile weight, 75th for height.

Favorite toys/activities: Squinkies, playing doctor, having your nails painted, chalk, wearing Mardi Gras beads, swimming at the pool, water table, Barbie things, Princess music player, eating fruit (especially blueberries)

Favorite books: Miffy at Play, Barnyard Dance, Goodnight Gorilla, Toes Ears Nose (Karen Katz), Room on the Broom, Hilda Needs Help, Color Kittens

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