On the 3rd Olivia turned 15 months! She has had a huge physical and cognitive growth spurt since she turned a year old but especially so in the last month and a half. I catch myself wondering where my baby girl has gone as I look at an active little girl coming into her toddler-hood very nicely.
Olivia gave me the best present on my birthday in July when she started walking. She gave me a musical toy that she wanted me to wind up and as I was doing so she walked right over to me to grab it. It was literally like she had been walking for several days. It was the coolest thing to watch and it really was a great birthday gift. Even though she did take her first steps on her birthday she really didn’t seem motivated to do much more. I was fully convinced we would go into her 15 month appointment without really walking. She has proven me wrong as she is now trying to run. I especially love when she thinks Luke or Walt is coming to get her and she *runs* as fast as she can to my arms with a huge smile on her face. She LOVES to climb but this is terrifying. If there is access to steps she’s going to attempt to climb up them. She climbs on chairs, stairs, playgrounds, and she loves it. She was totally keeping up with the big kids at Luke’s school picnic conquering the tunnels and trying her best to climb up the slide.
Because she is now very mobile she does NOT want to be confined to any one space for too long. Car rides more than 15 minutes are not ideal. Sitting in her booster seat (she refuses to go in the high chair now) for too long after she’s done eating is not going to make her happy and I find myself constantly having to change her scenery when we are at home. She really dislikes being “left out” which usually means an epic cry fest when she sees me walk out of a room she’s in. And like clockwork she will probably meltdown around the exact time I need to prepare lunch or dinner. Sometimes this is exhausting but I keep reminding myself both the good and bad moments are phases and there will always be new positives and new challenges.
Olivia has also gone through a major language explosion and it too seemed to happen overnight. She had 3-5 words at a year (and again I worried about this) but is now a little chatterbox. I’ve been keeping a running list and so far we are up to 30 words she either says on her own or will repeat. She’s really good at making animal noises and the newest one is the sound of a monkey. She will shake her head and say “ohhh ahhh ohhh ahhh.” She’s also in that stage of if we say “Olivia can you say….?” she will attempt to say the word. She also has her own little todderlese language that I LOVE hearing. I try to record it when she’s really having a conversation with herself or someone else so that I can watch it over and over again as she grows.
She also seems to understand most of what we are saying. She will throw something away when asked. She can get different toys and bring them to you. She will throw or kick a ball when asked to. She will give hugs and kisses and wipe her face and “clean up.” I forgot how adorable it is to watch them figure out the simplistic ways of the world.
She’s a great eater but becoming more picky. Her favorite foods are cheese, avocado, blueberries, sweet potatoes, and bread. She dislikes eggs but thankfully I’ve found ways to sneak them in as well as some of the vegetables we all eat daily (spinach, broccoli, peas, etc). She is learning to use a fork and spoon and it’s really a huge mess after each mealtime. She’s also starting to get upset if I cut her food up and would rather hold the entire piece of food in her mouth. So when I steam large carrots instead of cutting them into bite-sized pieces I give her a cut portion of an entire carrot and she’s happy. I would have NEVER done this with Luke as I was always so worried about choking but thankfully Olivia seems like she’s gotten the “just take a bite” thing down. I still watch her religiously but it’s kinda nice to see her graduate to a new stage of eating.
She’s down to one nap and continues to be a champion sleeper. Her transition from 2-1 nap was so much smoother than Luke’s was. This is probably because her morning nap was always on the go and very short compared to the 1-1.5 hours Luke would spend napping in the AM in his crib. She usually naps around 2-2.5 hours and sleeps 11-12 hours at night. I never thought this was possible with a toddler. I continue to be thankful she has been a good sleeper.
She’s starting her first solo music class this week (sans Luke as he’ll be in preschool) and I’m super excited to watch her in the class as she’s so fun to watch at story time. She loves music and dancing and will sing her own little versions of songs when asked. She’s also starting to hold her own when it comes to sharing toys and space with Luke. If he tries to take something away from her she will hold on tighter and scream. I should also say she’s MUCH better at sharing than Luke is which has been a great teaching example for him. That being said she absolutely LOVES playing with things that are his. She will sometimes sneak a toy or his water cup when he’s not looking and run as fast as she can to a “safe place.” It’s adorable and also helping Luke feel like he’s not always being singled out for taking things away from her as we have to say “Olivia, you know that toy is Luke’s special toy” etc.
I’m excited to see where the next several months take Olivia! She’s a doll and I continue to be thankful for everything she has taught me. She is truly a perfect addition to our family.