I'm 12 days late with this update, but it's no surprise with everything that's been going on here lately. Regardless, Mo is 21 months old! It seems like kind of a non-monumental milestone, but she's got a lot going on right now, so it seems significant. Her vocabulary is exploding. I've heard from several people that their kids went from a handful of words at 18 months to full on talking by 2 years old, and that it usually happens in one big burst. That's what we're experiencing with Mo right now. She used to be unwilling to try new words. We'd say "Can you say ball?" and she'd just not nod or do nothing at all. Now she will make an attempt to say anything. She's learning all kinds of new words - it's really fun to watch.
We did talk to Mo about the pregnancy a little bit. She is blessedly too young to understand what happened, it hasn't affected her in any way except that I have been laid up on the couch most of the last three weeks, having little energy to do much else. When I was pregnant, we would ask her if she wanted a baby brother or a baby sister, and she'd always, without fail, say "Two!" No idea what that means, but we joked that maybe I was having twins. There was only one embryo in there though. Maybe somehow she knew that this pregnancy was #1 baby brother or sister, and that there would be another to come, #2. We can hope.
Mo has been pretty cuddly. When I'm laying on the couch, she likes to crawl up and cuddle. Sometimes only for a few seconds, sometimes long enough to read a couple books. She often runs over and says "uh" and reaches out her arms, and I pick her up onto my lap. We've been letting her watch cartoons lately, especially weekend mornings when we're still recovering from the week and have very little to give. She sits in my lap, eating a banana, watching PBS.
She also likes to hold my hand when we go for walks. Mike pushes the stroller, and she sticks her hand out, waiting for me to grab it. We walk the whole way like that. When she falls or bumps into something, she quickly shuffles on over to me and asks me to kiss it better. Even the littlest ouchie needs a kiss. I taught her that, I admit, and I love it every time.
For a long time she couldn't say yes, so she said "huh huh." It's more like "heh heh" or "hm hm." Some combination of those I guess. Anyway, we loved that. But recently she learned yeah, and that's equally adorable. Yeah!
Mo still loves books (LOVES them!). She sometimes calls herself Mamo, an attempt at the Momo we often call her. She likes to play horsey. If you're sitting with your legs crossed, she will inevitably climb on and say neigh, an indication for you to bounce her around and sing Pony Girl.
She has been a little more stubborn about eating lately. She's generally a really good eater, easy to please. But recently she plays this little game. Makes the sign for eat, we go to the fridge or pantry, she ponders, picks something out. She has a few bites. Ten minutes later she makes the sign for eat again, but refuses the item that's still sitting there waiting to be eaten. We're trying to enforce the rule that you don't get anything else until you finish the thing you asked for - we don't want to teach her bad eating habits already - but it's not always easy. And then she gets frustrated and throws her food. The throwing of the food, it's our biggest battle. When she's done eating, rather than just stop eating, she has to chuck her food away from her. Onto the floor. We tell her every single time that it's rude and inappropriate, and if she continues, we give her a time out. And then we make her pick up her mess. Hopefully this will eventually sink in - it's not worth it, just don't throw the dang food!
We've started some initial potty training. She likes to sit on the toilet with her training seat adapter, and she is interested when I use the bathroom. But she has yet to actually use the toilet. I'm not sure how to make that leap. Once she knows what she's supposed to do in the toilet, we can start to help her recognize the urges, to teach her to tell us when she needs to go. But for now, the two acts are still separate. There's what you do in your diaper, and there's sitting on the toilet. What do they have to do with each other? I keep hoping if she sits there long enough, eventually she'll go and we can say, "See! That! That's what you do here. Yay!" We're not ready to dive head first into potty training, and I don't think she is either, so we'll just keep familiarizing her with the concept. But if you have any helpful stories of potty training, I'd love to hear them. Does that connection happen naturally, the one between potty in the diaper and potty in the toilet? Do we just need to wait until she starts to demonstrate she's getting it? Or is there a way to teach her that? I know everybody does it differently - every kid is different, every family is different - but what worked for you?