Well, it is official. 20 months old today. I feel that it is time to say Leonora is “one-and-a-half” or “two this fall”. While 19-months-old seems fairly normal to advertise, saying 20-months-old is tilting towards those folks who say their children are thirty-four-months old (almost 3) or thirty-seven-months old (so..3). Bless their hearts, but in the interest of hopefully raising a person who is financially self-sufficient at a reasonable age like 21, I’m aiming to drop the months part.
My Favorite Things: The way she says, “ut-ho” when something is wrong, the open-mouthed kissed all day long, and that she is a HUGE mama’s girl still. Sometimes she doesn’t even want to go with Dada on adventures because she wants to stay with mama. I appreciate the devotion, but mama still needs the occasional break, sweet pea!
L’s Favorite Things: coloring in her dog coloring book, stickers, playing with her sticker book, and climbing onto the dining room chairs to color/eat at the table.
Slightly Annoying: when she is having a clingy day and yells “mom! mam! mommma-mammme! mom!” while looking for me throughout the house. I prefer the “mama mama mama” to the “mmoooommmmm!”s for sure. However, when she is feeling sweet, it is “mama, ooo” then hugs.
The occasional slump into the seated position on the floor or the sidewalk when life just-is-too-much are half hilarious and half annoying as well. Normally they aren’t tantrums, just seated frustration.
Books: Leonora is still a little book worm. She loves to look through all of her books on her own and would have us read to her for hours on end, if she could. Her current favorites are the Madeline series, the Curious George series, and Dr Suess books. I borrowed some library books for the first time a couple of weeks ago and she is doing great with them for the most part. She is starting to need more variety than our 200+ books, so we will be making more trips to the library soon.
Milestone: First plane flight to Boston in late April. Leonora was an excellent traveler all around. We hope that continues and we can travel more soon.
She was in love with the “Make Way For Ducklings” book before we went to Boston and so she loved the duckling statue at Boston Common!
Talking: this last month (19 months) is when L has really started talking a lot. She is starting to string words together like “color doggie” or “dada grandpapa” when they are together. She is learning 2-4 new words a day and overall just babbling or talking a lot more. She says “twinka twinka” for stars or when she wants her light up star machine on. She says “rock, sing” when she is delaying bedtime.
For a couple months she has pointed to Dan and says, “dadadadada”, then me and says, “mamamama”. Now when we ask what her name is, she points at herself and says, “nananana” (nora nora). It is so adorable.
Bottles: We have been officially OFF bottles and milk for a couple of weeks now. I was getting worried that Leonora would have a bottle until 4, but it was a relatively smooth transition. L used to drink several full bottles (64oz plus) of just water a day. The pediatrician said she was just using the water and bottles as a pacifier (which she has always hated) and she wasn’t actually THAT thirsty. Whew.
While in Boston, I left the bottles in the Airbnb when we were out and about most of the day. She started drinking from the water bottles or sippy cups more out of necessity. She never lacked the ability to drink from them after 10 months or so old, but refused them. We kept offering her only the sippy cups when it wasn’t bedtime or naptime, then started only offering her water in the bottles at those times. Finally I transitioned to the Think Baby transition bottles with the non-spill, fake nipples and she likes to hold these in her crib throughout the night, but hates actually drinking from them.
During this process, L developed an aversion to milk and started throwing it up frequently (from being overfull), so I decided to cut out the whole milk at the same time. It seemed like good timing, since whole milk isn’t needed past age 2 and L will eat other dairy products. My mom never offered us milk much to drink as kids and instead focused on drinking water all the time. All of my siblings and I drink tons of water and rarely drink anything else, so I think it will be a good habit for L to learn as well.
Lovies: L still sleeps with an aden & anais swaddle blanket. Luckily the pattern does not matter and we have a dozen. She also has to sleep with her little stuffed dog. The dog does not have a name yet, but Genevieve is a strong contender after the dog in the Madeline books.
Food: This kid has the Floyd girl appetite for sure. She is slightly more picky about what food to eat when, but still eats a huge variety of foods. She prefers to pick and point to what she wants now in the fridge or on the counter. She eats less vegetables than she used to, but I try to focus on her weekly food variety and not daily. When she has a vegetable that is sounding good, she eats a ton. Today she is stealing my steamed asparagus and has eaten about 10 spears. Yesterday, I think she ate a bite or two of carrots, half of a tomato, and a handful of green beans only. Some days she only eats fruit.
She eats lightly breaded chicken tenders most nights with dinner. It is her main meat source. Her normal serving is 3-4 pieces, which is 4-5 ounces of meat or an adult-sized portion. I try not to stress about what she is eating and just offer her a lot of variety. I do really limit sugar, but since I avoid sugar (and honey, syrup, etc) most days that is fairly easy.
Potty Training: We are attempting to potty training this week! Leonora has been so interested and wanting to learn, but I wanted to deal with the bottle habit first. Getting her onto all water bottles and cups has also dropped the used diaper count to 4-5/ day instead of 10-15/day. That should help us potty training too!
On Sunday, Leonora asked to go potty by trying to rip her diaper off and then promptly went a diaper-full of pee when I got her to the bathroom! Wahoo! She has gone a couple more times in the potty, but also peed on the floor once when running around naked. She was so upset about peeing on the floor and was telling me about it again this morning.
Sleep: L is going to bed later with the long, bright almost summer days. Usually starting bath time around 8pm and actually being asleep by 9:30-10pm. She is waking up between 7:30-8:30am and napping 2-3 hours starting around 1pm.
Although she is still a good sleeper, she is starting to try to delay bedtime as much as possible. She talks and plays in her crib so much that after an hour in her crib at night, one of us has to sit in the rocking chair in her room and just say “no talking”, “lay down”, and “close your eyes” for 10 minutes until she just passes out.
Reading: Leonora is showing signs of wanting to learn how to read… already. I’m trying to prioritize the potty training first, but am working on her letters a little more now that she is so interested. She knows 3-4 letter names, sounds and points them out occasionally. We read a letter book a couple times a day, play with letter magnets and say the phonics sounds as appropriate. I had to do phonics flashcards and rule memorization until I was probably 9-years-old despite being an advanced reader. Twenty years later, I can report that they are in my very, very long term memory.
Tantrums: Man, 18-months-old was brutal. I was convinced the terrible twos had started. Her last couple of teeth were bothering her then, but she finally is done for awhile with teething. Hooray. There was definitely a lot a boundary pushing then. I’m sure the tantrums and attitude will resurface, but for now things are good.
This post is getting long. I am mostly writing these blog posts and the Instagram posts for my own memory and in lieu of a baby book. I wrote a lot of Facebook posts during my years at Amazon and it is stunning how well snippets of real-life moments and feelings temper the nostalgia. This age is such a blast. I enjoyed her first year of babyhood, but I really don’t miss it. Onwards to two!