It's been just over a year since we welcomed our baby girl into the family. I'm not rightly sure I can even call her a baby anymore. I know being a year old doesn't seem so big, but I find myself baffled daily by all the change in her. She's no longer just a baby, she's all of a sudden a wildly active, clearly opinionated, loving little girl. She's started jabbering on all the time, and every once in a while we're catching some words in there. My little girl is also so close to walking it's insane! She's cruising on everything and using anything she can slide against the floor to get moving. Our girl is driving me crazy with all her little and big milestones!
A week or so ago, we discovered (quite by accident), that she can climb the stairs at break-neck speed (thankfully no necks were actually broken). Biggest boy had gone upstairs to go use his little potty and didn't full latch the gate when he came back down. I didn't notice the unlatched gate and went in the kitchen to get a drink. After the two seconds it took me in the kitchen, I came back to the livingroom and noticed she wasn't there. When I saw the open gate I freaked out, expecting to see her a step or two up (which has happened before), but was very surprised to hear her all the way upstairs in the bathroom goofing around with one of her sister's toys. Since then, we are much more serious about firmly locking the gate. Phew! We also let her crawl up the stairs for naps and bed times and she seems happy adding this bit of independence to her sleep routines. I still follow behind her with my hands out in case she slips, but she hasn't needed my help once.
As for chattering, she's easily the most talkative of my four kids at the same age. She was a very calm, quiet baby up until now, but all of a sudden she wants to communicate verbally (and frequently). She's finally started saying Mama (be still my heart), and has perfected her old standard, Dada. On top of that she's fond of asking for her cup, "this one", which she picked up from her brothers I suspect, and has recently taken up slurring out "I love you". The big kids usually stand at the gate at the top of the stairs when my husband is leaving for work shouting "I LOVE YOU DADDYYYYYY!" until he's driven out of sight, so I'm not surprised she picked this one up. Surprised or not, it melts my heart to hear her saying it to me with her big, blue eyes looking at me in earnest. I am lucky to have such a loving girl to spoil me.
Besides all the moving and shaking, she has recently decided to work on her own food routine. Out of nowhere, she decided she wanted to start weaning herself from breastmilk. This has been quite the rollercoaster! Some days she only wants to feed once, and other days she changes her mind and wants to feed all day. She's been teething pretty brutally the past two days so she's back on the breastmilk wagon. To say my body is confused is an understatement. At least she didn't go cold turkey like her older brother! Because she's weaning, we've decided to start giving her rice milk and almond milk to make sure she's getting some of the nutrients she's missing out in my milk. For the first time, we've decided to avoid cow's milk. We're also phasing cow's milk out of our older kids' diets (I'll explain that in another blog). They love almond and rice milk, so it hasn't been as tough as I'd expected.
It's been a wild year getting to know my newest little princess. I feel so thankful that God gave me the grace to say YES to a new life even though our hands seemed like they were already so full. Every day I've shared with her has been a reminder of how incredibly blessed we are to have a God who so carefully plans every aspect of our lives, if we just let Him have control.