TWO YEARS OLD!!
I really can't believe it. There is not one tiny little part of me that can believe that Natalie has been in our life for two entire years. Thinking back over the past year is just so incredibly crazy.
She has grown up so much over the last 12 months, it's ridiculous. Actually, I'm very curious to see how much she has physically grown over the past year when we go to her two year check up on the 30th :) She's such a teeny tiny little thing. She is still wear some shirts she was wearing last year at this time. Granted, last year they were a big and this year they are a bit small... but still.
She is so so so much fun. Some days are a little less fun than others, but overall she is pretty much the coolest kid ever and I can't believe she's ours. I love everything about her. Even her crazy emotions and drama queen tendencies. I can't blame her for that, honestly, she does have me as her mother... I tend to be a little dramatic sometimes. Just as Michael.
It's so hard to pinpoint all of her milestones now, and I wish I had been keeping up with the monthly updates. She's been a big talker since she turned 1, but at about 15 months she just took off and never looked back. She's talking in full sentences now and saying some of the most hilarious things I've ever heard come out of someone that small.
She was angry at how cold she was the other day when we went to the store and as we were walking to the van she screamed "HOT CHOCOLATE! We need to buy some!!". She has never had hot chocolate in her life (because she is insane and doesn't even like chocolate milk) and the fact that she yelled it angrily like that was just too much for me. She kills me. She's just so dang smart and observant, I can't get enough of her.
She has the best memory ever, and even when you think she's not listening... she is. So watch out.
I've given up on her hair situation completely. She has the prettiest curly hair when it's under control. But, I'd be spraying it and combing it every 20 minutes if I wanted to keep it that way all day. She gets some very impressive bed head which you can see in every single one of these pictures of her. Some days her hair doesn't even get combed because I just can't make myself care enough to deal with it :) Even when I do comb it all it takes it her rolling around on the couch or floor for 5 minutes and it's messed up. I'm pretty sure this is going to be an issue for a long time though so I'm going to just have to deal with it... and probably start combing her hair every day even if we aren't going to be seeing other people. She's going to look back at her childhood photos and see herself with a rat's next in every single one. Woops. Most of the time that I have to tackle her hair she doesn't even fight me. She's gotten so good at sitting and waiting for me to get it combed. Sometimes it gets pulled and she doesn't enjoy that, but she still lets me finish. I like her.
She also yells at Dexter to be quiet now when he barks. I'm so proud.
(I know your dream birthday dinner is hot dogs, french fries, fried pickles and cheese...)
She giggles every time Claire touches her, and when Claire cries she goes and does her little mommy voice and says ''It's ok Claire.'' and genuinely seems concerned about her. My heart explodes.
For a while she was the most polite child on the planet I'm pretty sure, and even said ''Thank you!'' when you were tickling the crap out of her. You're definitely welcome, kid.
Getting her to say ''Please'' is not as easy because I feel like she thinks she's in trouble when you are asking/reminding her to say it. So sometimes that ends in her throwing her hands over her face and whining... And those are the times that I want to just throw my hands in the air and walk away before I go crazy :) Those little freak outs for no good reason are just... too much... But she makes up for them pretty quickly and by the end of the day I have almost forgotten about them. Almost.
(Birthday pancakes! She ate like 4 bites...)
She's still got major sensory issues that we're working through. There will be no touching of anything messy, slimey, sticky (not including stickers of course), wet... I definitely admit to not working with her on this stuff as much as I need to, but we're getting there. She has made some progress, but not a ton. She's still a really really picky eater, but most of that is because of the sensory issues I'm pretty sure. She likes noodles, but if they are too soft or if there is too much sauce we're out of luck. It's fun stuff.
She'll get there, I'm positive. If that happened tomorrow I might cry for like 5 hours straight out of pure joy.
(She had a piece of Christmas candy with dinner... This poor girl always looks like such a mess in pictures :) )
Back to the stickers, though. She's obsessed. She used to really like to color, but now she's onto paint and stickers. Those are her means of creativity :) She loves to build with blocks and make towers out of anything she can, including food. Mostly diced ham. It's impressive.
I just really can't say enough about her. I love her so much. She's such a little wild woman, but she is so much fun and she really is such an amazing kid. She has her days and her freak outs, but she is so insanely smart, adorable, a really good listener 95% of the time, hilarious, sweet and about every other word you could think of to describe someone you love more than anything in the world. I can't imagine life without her, and I have more and more fun with her every single day that passes.
(Sixlets inside of a birthday ''cake''. Really it's stacked sugar cookies because she isn't a big fan of cake... she didn't want to eat the cookie tonight either of course, crazy girl. But the sixlets were a hit!)
She's just the best. I'm so proud of her for so many reasons. I hope I'm doing an ok job at being her mom. Some days I really just want to let her watch Dora for 12 straight hours (I don't do it) and it makes me feel guilty for not doing enough with her. Some days she exhausts me and I feel horrible for wishing I could just get away from her for a little while. Every single day I love her so much that it makes me want to cry just thinking about anyone else ever taking care of her other than me. She is never going to school, by the way. I'm not letting her leave me. Ever. She'll just have to live in our basement with her husband and children some day... or maybe she'll never get married because I'm not letting her go anywhere without me... or maybe she'd never meet anyone anyways if I don't start combing her hair and keeping her clean ;)
Basically she's amazing and I couldn't love her more. I can't wait to watch her grow up, but I also just want to keep her this age forever. She is my little buddy and I am so obsessed with her.
Happy Happy Happy 2nd Birthday, Natalie!!!!