Sunday, 25 August 2013

18 months old

My beautiful daughter is 18 months old today!
Another milestone in her little life.

 Birth, 6 months, 12 months, 18 months

If you read the baby and toddler books, things should be getting easier now, and I guess in many ways they are.  Things are definitely made more complicated with me being pregnant as there is no denying I am more tired and more immobile.  I feel slightly guilty that because of this I am not able to appreciate this time with her to the full however I am not sure there is ever a "good" time to have another baby.  I am trying hard to savour this time just the two of us though.  Precious time that we will never have in quite the same way again. 

At 18 months C knows most of her shapes and can identify a circle, square, triangle, star (and probably others) when asked.  She is also pretty much there with her colours and can identify the most common colours 75% of the time.  She knows many body parts and will point to them in songs and rhymes if mentioned.

Eating and sleeping are going really well!  Weaning was probably the only one of the many elements of motherhood that I could say has been textbook.  She loves vegetables (especially peas and carrots).  Her favourite meals are probably roast dinner and shepherds pie... English to the core.  She is also partial to the odd chip if she can sneak one :-)

Speech, as many of you are aware, is quite obvious in its absence.  She can say "Yes" and "There" (although seems to use them interchangeably) but that really is all.  She understands EVERYTHING though and can follow quite complicated instructions.  She can also mimic animals sounds therefore I am pretty sure there is nothing wrong with her hearing.  I am sure she will get there eventually however as I never did much baby signing with her, she gets very frustrated with not being able to communicate her needs which can make things tough.

C is a cautious mover.  She needs to build up her confidence before she is happy to do something unaided.  This past month she has mastered climbing the stairs (ours are not standard and take a bit of practice to get round the corners) and climbing a ladder.  She loves the trampoline and practicing rolling and handstands with Daddy.

C enjoys some messy play, particularly colouring, sticking, sand and water play.  She is very much a "doer".  However is much less keen on anything that sticks to her like play foam, spaghetti and playdough and hates to get dirty.  I think this is something that will change, the more she is exposed to it.

By far her favourite activity at the moment is posting straws through small holes.  It's actually requires quite a lot of concentration and she will sit and occupy herself for ages with it.  I am in the process of making her an activity that builds on this and will blog on that separately in due course.

There is no denying though that C is happiest when outside.  Before she was born we moved to the countryside to give our future children what we considered to be a better life.  In our eyes this was the ideal place to bring up children, surrounded by fresh air, open space and farm animals.  Luckily, C seems to agree.  We have chickens, guinea pigs, cats and a rabbit, and there are cows at the bottom of the garden.  She adores them all!  She loves the space in the garden and particularly likes helping Daddy mow the lawn and water the vegetables.

In previous posts I have described C as a high need baby and to a certain extend she has turned into a high need toddler.  Her confidence is improving through and friends have commented that she is beginning to come out of her shell.  It depends on the situation but generally, as long as she knows I am nearby, she is happy to explore on her own. C still is extremely wary of other toddlers though and can lash out if they invade her personal space too much.

The next 6 months will possibly prove to be the most eventful of C's life so far.  In November her new sibling should make ?his arrival.  As yet I have not mentioned anything to C about this pregnancy.  I am sure she has noticed that Mummy's tummy is getting bigger and she likes to pat it, however with 3 months to go I feel it is too long a time span for her to comprehend at the moment.  I have been given some great advice on books that help introduce a toddler to the idea of a new baby in the house and I plan to gradually introduce those to her over the next couple of months.  I have also bought her a dolls set which includes a cot, changing mat and playmat in the hope she will enjoy mimicking many of the activities that the baby will be doing.

It does scare me that our relationship will be affected however it is up to me, as her Mummy, to ensure that this new baby is a positive change in C's life and she does not suffer any negative consequences.

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