Friday, March 14, 2008

Fourteen Months

My Sweet, Darling Girl,

If one word could capture this past month, it would have to be "Wassat?" From the moment you wake up, often starting in the middle of our morning snuggle and nurse, until the last bits of chatter in the monitor at the end of the day, you are talking. You can say many words with absolute clarity and precision, but lately you have taken to babbling incomprehensible strains of words, often with great gusto. Because you are my child and so teachable and mold-able and open to learning, I taught you to lift your hand in the air, fingertips pressed together toward the ceiling, when saying "more! more!"--much like an exuberant Italian basso profundo ordering another round of pasta with-a meat-a balls-a. If you're going to be silly, might as well take it all the way.

Another fun thing about the past month is how much your hair has grown. It is really starting to fit your little personality. As soon as you are out of the bath, it starts to curl up in these wisps away from your face and into a point in the back. I keep trying to get the perfect photo of it, but it's nearly impossible to capture it just so. We skipped your bath last night due to sheer exhaustion, and after a long hard nap this afternoon your curls were absolutely out of this world. One curl above your left ear was almost a perfect, loose spiral laying alongside the curve of your head.

You've really taken to storytime, which delights us to no end. Your favorites this week are the ones about a firefly, pirates who aren't the best babysitters, and Skippyjon Jones. You love it when our hero, moonlighting as El Skippito Friskito, the swordfighting chihuahua, thrusts his sword into the air, bringing an end to El Buzzito, El Blimpo Bumblebeeto Bandito. You know what is coming, and it fills you with such joy that you giggle, tip your head down, grin ear to ear and then proceed to use your whole body to say "POP!" What I love most about this book, besides the fact that you love it, is that Skippyjon isn't afraid to be exactly who he is: a precocious, hyperactive, imaginative little cat who gets himself into all sorts of trouble. 

Hmm...sound familiar? With toddlerhood, you've become more independent, strong-willed, vocal (mentioned earlier), and determined than ever. It can be exhausting at times. Like when we go to the park and I'm on snack patrol, protecting the other kids' juice boxes and goldfish crackers from your lightning quick grab. Or before bathtime, when you want to keep playing with the food on your tray but I can't possibly stand one more squished seed stuck in your hair and you just want to squeeze one.more.fistful. Or even when I'm making dinner and you decide that the one minute and thirty seconds of prep time needed is just WAY too long and take dinner into your own hands:

Amidst all this busyness, it's a good thing we have our "MAMA!" You've been saying my name for months now, but I've noticed in the past few weeks that you are really enunciating it, emphatically declaring me as your very own with those two simple syllables. Any time I go away for a bit, whether it's while you play in the nursery at church, or hang out with your dad, or even when you are down for a nap, at the moment that we are reunited you say my name with such love and tenderness and joy and excitement that I feel like I'm on stage, accepting an Oscar for "Best Mother/Entertainer of the Year." (Because let's face it, if the world's a stage, well I am definitely your stooge). 
And I wouldn't have it any other way. Sleep well, my big, fourteen month-old girl. Tomorrow's another day, and you're going to need all that slumber in order to be La Chica Busy-ta mas Sweet-a. 
your MAMA!


bonnieb said...

I love you, Becky. Thank you for so generously opening this way into your life with Maddie and into your heart. love, bonnie

The Ulrickson Fam said...

Too fab. We are also fans of the Skippy Jon Jones action. Love it. Heids tries to say "Holy Frijoles" any times she sees black or pinto fun. Keep loving that sweet little one.