At 15 months old, this little sugar bee is busy learning and playing and doing all day long. The last few months we have seen the beginnings of her imaginary and pretend play. I love it! She loves to play with bowls and spoons and will "mixy mixy" with such determination. She even brings me the spoon for a taste test of her exquisite cookies, eggs, and other "yummy nummy nums." When mommy is wearing her apron, Bee must wear an apron too. Often it's all she's wearing. Her pretend play also involves her babies, which comes as no surprise given that we talk a lot about babies around here. She mimics the way I tend to Julian by swaddling, burping, kissing and loving on her dolls. While I'm in the rocking chair nursing Julian she will bring me her babies and blankets to swaddle over and over again. She is learning to be such a good little nurturer.
As a parent it is amazing to observe her constant education and you can literally see her mind working as she processes new material. Bee loves books. We read stories together in the rocking chair before nap time and bedtime everyday and anytime in between. She points to all the ladybugs in every book, and in fact refers to ladybugs, butterflies, bees, and other insects as "bees!" She taps her pointer finger, either in the air or on the object, when pointing at something. It's adorable, trust me. Some of her favorite books include the entire BabyLit series, Little Blue Truck, Welcome, Little One, Goodnight Gorilla, The House in the Night, and The Swing to name a few.
Bee loves her backyard swing and calls it a "weeee!" When she wants to swing she will point outside and declare "weeee!" and when she sees swings or slides with children on them within her books she will point and exclaim "weeee!" Like most toddlers, Bee loves to be outside exploring and investigating. She still puts e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. in her mouth and rocks and sticks and dirt are no exclusions.
Bee is a really great sleeper and loves being in her crib with her binky and blankey. Some days she doesn't want to get out and leave binky and blankey behind. She searches the edges of her blanket until she finds the right corner and clutches onto it with her fist, then softly rubs the corner on her face as she soothes herself to sleep. Bee is taking two naps a day, at 10 am and 3 pm (roughly).
I bought a small set of stacking cups for Bee which has proved to be the best $4.88 I could have spent. Bee worked hard for days and days until she mastered stacking and unstacking all the cups in their correct order. She concentrated so hard on mastering the cups and it was a joy to see her brain hard at work. Cups all day, in the car, in the bath, and all over the house.
We taught Bee a few words in sign language to help her communicate better with us. The two signs that stuck the most are "more" and "all-done." This is particularly helpful at mealtimes, but she has found a way to translate them into the rest of her world as well. The sign for "more" has become the universal action signal. If she brings a book and signs "more" she wants you to read it. If it opens, closes, makes a sound or moves, the "more" sign is asking to make it happen. Likewise the sign for "all done" means no more food, no more vacuuming, no more of whatever is ailing her.
Lots of words are beginning to pop out of Bee's mouth, including cuppy, hi, Juju, momma, dada, bee, and baby. She has discovered the word "NO!" and uses it often and repeatedly, especially when she is doing something she shouldn't, such as stealing Julian's binky. She will snatch it from his mouth and run it over to me saying "no no no no no!"
Bee loves her little brother and is constantly leaning her head towards him giving kisses and hugs. Sometimes this translates into a head bonk and both of them are sad. Usually the first word that comes out of her mouth in the morning is "Juju!" and she goes running into our bedroom searching for him. She gets very excited to show him toys and books and as sweet as that is, it's also a lot of work keeping him safe from her excitement. I pray everyday that they will become the best of playmates, but for now we are focusing on being soft and not putting things in his mouth. Let's hope that in a year she will be as willing to share with him as she is now.
Whew! I'm exhausted just reading over this update. It's only taken me two weeks during my brief nap times breaks to finish writing it. Our Bee is a beautiful, smart, strong-willed little soul and we are grateful for her life and spirit everyday.