Colette: 23 Months

A quick last update on Colette before her big 2-year update! Colette has been without us two weekends in a row and overall, has done very well. Jessica and my mom split the weekdays and then my mom and dad were with her on the weekends. It was not ideal that we had the wedding and the boys' birthday trip weekends back-to-back weekends and I was a little worried about if she'd feel abandoned but I think she actually enjoyed the second weekend when she got all the attention on her. She has been a bit clingier and bedtime has been a little harder but not too bad.

She's really made a lot of progress in the last month and it's so fun to watch how engaged she is. She absolutely loves her Stretch class. They don't allow photos or video so I keep telling Dave he'll have to take her sometime to witness it. She knows all the transitions, loves the songs and at the end they do a song, 'Is <Colette> here today? Is Colette here today? Jump up and down and all around because Colette is here today!' and then whichever kid's turn it is jumps around. She's very into it and it's really so cute.

There aren't any big updates on eating or sleeping, though there has been a little bit of crying at bedtime since we got back as she doesn't want us to leave her. Talking, and overall development, are where I've noticed the big changes. This past month her talking has really taken off. She can repeat many things we ask her to say, she now can string multiple words together and is even starting to 'sing' a bit. She can sing 'Happy Birthday' and 'Old McDonald Had a Farm'. Whereas a month or two ago she really could only say the first syllable of a word, she's now improving and can say the whole word, or more of it at least. She couldn't say anything with C before, but now she can. We're still working on her saying her name, she says 'toe' for Coco, although this morning we got much closer. She can say a version of 'Lette' for Colette so we'll see which one turns out to be easier for her. She's usually really great about playing independently and now when I hear her, it's endless talking. Of course not much of it is understandable. When we were in Hawaii earlier this month, she went back and forth filling up her bucket, walking up the beach and dumping it out. I could actually sit on a chair and read intermittently!

MyGym has always been fun as I can really see the growth over time. Her balancing is much better, she can climb higher, but it's always at surprise time, when they bring out an item of the week (cone, hula hoop, pom pom, etc), that I see how she's developing. Last week it was a piece of a pool noodle. The teacher told the kids to put one finger in one end and the other finger in the other. Then to stretch out their legs and with their fingers still in the holes, to roll it down their legs. I couldn't believe that she got every step of it and was able to do it. So fun to see.

As far as the potty goes, she really hates getting her diaper changed so I would hope that she would be ready for potty trained, but besides hating diapers, she isn't really showing any signs of being ready. We talk about it a lot, mostly when she's fighting a diaper change, that if she doesn't want it changed, then we can say 'bye-bye to diapers' and she can go on the potty. There's a firm 'no!!' for that too so we'll see when she warms up to it. I would hope this summer, I sort of thought after all of our April travel but well before Cincinnati would be good but I don't see that happening. So possibly after our Fourth of July trip.

Colette: What a big month for you! It's been so much fun hearing your little voice share so many new words. Your brothers love asking you to repeat stuff... ugh, I keep trying to get them to teach you your name as opposed to 'a toot me' (instead of excuse me). They think it's the funniest thing ever. Over the past week, I've chatted with several people for the first time and your story has come up and though we've gotten a bit further from that tough beginning where I don't think about it every day, when I do stop to think about, it still amazes me that you are who you are today. No signs of any delays, growing by leaps and bounds. We had our semi-annual appointment with Dr. Hardy the other day and decided to stop using the inhaler all together (we only use it during colds now and I'm not sure it's doing anything anyway). The appointment is basically me answering questions and a quick exam and I'm starting to wonder if we even need to keep coming in twice a year. Pretty amazing. You can't wait to go to school and the teachers basically have to block you from running off up the stairs (your brothers on the other hand have to be pushed in). I volunteered there several days this week and had you with me during school hours once and you were in heaven (and so were all the little girls). You head right for the dress-up or doll section and all the little girls gather around you. You're very independent and aren't concerned about where I am. You were also in to celebrate the boys' birthdays and seemed totally comfortable pulling a chair up next to George. I only hope you're as excited to go to Calvary the following year since we won't be doing drop-offs there next year. Can't believe we're days away from May... and you're 2nd Birthday!

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