January 28, 2017
Elle Evergreen: 2 Years Old
Elle turned two this month (even though her personality is as big as a 16 year old)! ;) We are having so much fun watching her grow into the spunky, fierce little girl that she is. Here's a little update on what she's loving, what she's doing and all of that...
Toys - Elle doesn't really have too many favorite toys of her own. She basically likes to play with (ahem, steal) anything Wren is playing with. She does like her baby dolls, and she likes to get a wipe and clean them saying they "pah-eee" (potty). She likes to put them in her toy stroller and push them around the house.
Lip Balm - Elle LOVES lip balm. She asks to put it on a million times a day by humming (mmm mmm mmm) and rubbing her fingers over her lips. Then when you let her have it, she will rub it on repeatedly until you stop her (I think she would rub it on all day if you let her). Then she tends to lick it off her lips with her tongue (gross!) even when we tell her not to. (She also likes to suck on baby wipes - so go figure - girl's got some weird taste buds.)
Her "mimi" - She calls the little blanket that she sleeps with her mimi, and she loves her mimi more than anything else. We used to call it her "blankie" or blanket - then one time she went to visit my parents in Texas and came back calling it her "mimi." We were just happy she had a word for it so we knew when she wanted it. She falls asleep with it pressed against her lips, just under her nose and she makes a sucking motion with her lips against it. Wren does this same thing with her baby blanket - it's how they both fall asleep. Elle's mimi is a giant comfort to her if she's upset, so we have one everywhere - at school, in the car, and a million in the house. If she sees one in the laundry basket, she smiles lovingly at it and says "mmmiiiimmmmiiii" and holds it against her lips for a second, then sets it back down. :)
Being Held - Elle really loves to be held when you are standing up (she doesn't like it when you are sitting down). She likes you to pick her up and carry her around so she can see everything you're doing. She will walk up to you and put her arms up and say "uuuuup" to let you know she wants to be picked up, and if you sit down to hold her on your lap instead, she will say "no, uuuuup" and try to push you back to a standing position.
The Fridge - Elle loves the fridge. She loves to open it a million times a day and stare into it. She likes to get her water cup out, take a sip and put it back in. She likes to take all the condiments out that she can reach. She likes to take applesauce pouches out and ask if she can eat them all day long. Sometimes she just likes to sit in the fridge on the bottom ledge. She literally loves the fridge. (And this drives Jon and I insane. So many times we have asked if there is a child lock for refrigerators - but we've never researched it.)
Being Outside - Elle has always loved to be outside, even when she was a tiny baby. She still loves it, and she is such a daredevil. She likes to go down tall slides on her belly, she climbs up things that Wren is still to scared to climb up, and she gives me all the heart attacks. Taking her to the playground is so exhausting for me because I just follow her around waiting for her to break a limb.
Freedom - Elle is happiest when she can roam free, without being in a stroller or being held or being closely watched over. She's very independent and just wants to do her own thing without anyone interfering. For this reason, it's also the least stressful for Jon and I when she can do her own thing. We try to take her to places that are friendly for kids to run around and just let her go.
Babies - Elle really loves babies and pretty much considers anyone in a stroller to be a baby. She yells "baby!" and points at any baby we see - on TV, in books or in person.
Food - Elle has always had a big appetite. When she moved up to the toddler class in daycare, they were amazed at how much more she ate than the other kids. She is always up for eating - even if she just ate - and rarely turns down food. She is much pickier eater than Wren, though. We give them both the same foods, but Elle does not like veggies very much. For a while, the only fruit she liked was bananas, but now she will eat pretty much all fruit. She does like roasted broccoli and sweet potatoes. She doesn't really care for meat, especially ground meat (meatballs, hamburger patties, taco meat, etc), but she LOVES carbs (noodles and bread are her faves). She also really loves eggs - scrambled or boiled. If I had to pick her favorite meal, it would probably be scrampled eggs, bananas and toast. When she eats a lot, her belly gets really, really big and it looks hilarious. Sometimes I feel like it's uncomfortable because she'll walk around patting or rubbing it like a pregnant woman. She has a mild skin allergy to tomatoes or anything with tomatoes in it (pasta sauce, ketchup, chili, etc), and anywhere it touches her skin, she'll get red and blotchy and itchy and start crying. We have to wash it off with soap, put lotion on it and then it fades away. Once we realized what was causing it, we try not to give her anything with tomatoes in it anymore.
Watching in the Kitchen - Elle loves to drag her little chair into the kitchen when someone is preparing food so she can watch (aka make a mess by grabbing at everything). This is super cute, but also super annoying when you are trying to fix a meal. I try to let her do it when it's something out of the norm (like baking a birthday cake), but I don't let her do it for breakfast, lunch and dinner because it's just too much to handle. ;)
Washing her Hands - She loves any excuse to wash her hands, which basically means getting a ton of soap from the automatic soap dispenser and then immediately washing it off, then repeating until there are a lot of bubbles at the bottom of the sink to play in.
Flushing the Toilet - Elle is semi-potty training right now at school. Her school felt she was ready and wanted to start, so they let her use the potty. We are sort of doing it at home, but not whole heartedly (I'm just not ready for that challenge!). Her familiarity with the potty has created an intense love for flushing the toilet. She wants to flush it all the time - when she's used the potty, when she hasn't, when I'm using the potty, when we're at home, when we're in public, etc. In public, she and Wren usually fight over who gets to flush the potty, which leads to their hands all over the toilet and sometimes them falling on the floor of the bathroom. The whole thing gives me the heeby jeebies (GERMS!).
Elle continues to be SUCH a great sleeper. Thankfully, both of our girls have always loved their sleep. She goes to bed on her own, with her mimi, in her crib (Still! I'm not ready to give up the crib yet), and she sleeps between 10 and 12 hours a night. She rarely wakes up during the night unless she's sick. If she does wake up, she will either put herself back to sleep or we'll go in and pat her, calm her down and she falls back asleep.
She still takes 2 naps a day on the weekends - she really loves her sleep! She only gets one nap a day at school, and you can tell she's tired by the time she comes home. She goes to bed in between 7:30pm and 8:00pm everyday.
When she wakes up, she likes to lounge in her crib a bit before she'll start crying or yelling for someone to come get her, and if you go get her before she's ready to get up, it could mean bad news for the rest of the day - she'll be a super grump! It's best just to wait until she's good and ready to get out of bed.
While she is a great sleeper in her crib and her carseat, she has never slept well anywhere else. She won't fall asleep in anyone's arms or in her stroller.
The words that Elle knows right now are: Momma, Dadda, Elle, Eehn (Wren), Ro Ro (Rowan), Didi, Pa (Pops), Gigi, food, more, beh butt (belly button), toot, poop, tee tee, pah-ee (potty), school, bye bye, eat, wawa (water), hi, baby, nigh nigh (night night), seep (sleep), mimi (her blanket), up (when she wants to be held), wah (walk), hah (hot - and she also knows how to blow on her food when it's hot) - and probably more, but those are the ones that come to mind.
"No" is probably her favorite word - it was her first word - and it's the word she says most often. For a while, it was all she said, to everything. She also learned to shake her head no, and only very recently started nodding her head yes to things. She still does not say the word "yes" ever. (I'm scared for what this means for her teenage years.) ;)
As mentioned above, Elle is fiercely independent, moody, can be grumpy quite often, can be extremely sweet and loving when she's feeling it and she doesn't really listen to what Jon and I tell her. She is basically the polar opposite of Wren, which has been challenging for us - figuring out how best to parent her.
As she grows and her understanding and communication increases, things have continued to get better - which we are so happy about. She now understands why we're saying no, and she can communicate with us about what she wants or why she's upset. If I tell her no or correct her for something, she comes back at me with her pointer finger out and says "No, Momma! No!" She's a feisty little thing!
She tends to behave better when she's full and well rested, and when she's in a good mood, she is so loving, gives hugs and kisses, plays games with us, gets along with Wren and plays with her lovingly, shares, and laughs a ton. She has a really great sense of humor and a really great laugh - it's deep and kind of hoarse and bubbles out of her - it's a really great sound. You can tell by what she thinks is funny and how she acts to be funny that she's going to have a great sense of humor when she's older. It's almost a sarcastic sense of humor, if that even exists in 2 year olds.
Mixed in with the good, Elle can also be really bad - just flat out disobedient. She is not scared by threats of discipline, and sometimes completely ignores them (although she is listening more now than she used to). She can also be very mischievous - getting into trouble and giving us the side eye while she does it, then laughing about it. She doesn't like to do anything we ask - even if she's being cute and we ask her to smile for a photo or to do something again, she will not do it. We have to be tough on her a lot, which is not fun as a parent, but we hope that it pays off in the long run.
She is extremely independent - likes to do her own thing and does not want supervision. She is also a daredevil and will attempt things that kids twice her age should be doing. I'm not sure if this is a second child thing or not, but both of these traits make us scared for her teenage years.
All in all, we have always said that Elle gets sweeter every day, and she really does. The more she grows and learns, the more she can communicate and understand, the more she gets to know us and we get to know her, the better things get - which is so awesome. It's one of the reasons we love watching her grow, and we really can't wait to see the person she becomes! :)