at 18 months // a mom post


I love me a Vivian at 18 months. Instead of catching flashes of toddlerness in her chubby baby cheeks, I now find myself catching flashes of babyness in her chubby toddler cheeks surrounded by her wildly curly hair. Every time it's a dagger in the heart. Stop! No! Please stop growing up! Stay little! pleeeeeaaaase! But, no. Viv has no time for staying little.

Cliche moment: It keeps getting better and better, but I keep getting sadder and sadder as I realize how fast the time goes. I try not to think about it. Instead, I just try to enjoy all of the good, bad and ugly that comes with a baby turning into a toddler.

Independence! Choices! Opinions! Tantrums! Yay!

Our usual routine these days goes as follows: wake up in the morning, eat breakfast by our little heater, which is always centered right on her tummy, and she doesn't like to share (she is definitely my daughter in that sense). Viv clamors to go outside and brings me the keys and her rain boots (always her rain boots! She won't wear anything else these days). She wants to put them on by herself (at least half way by herself) leads me to the door and climbs down the stairs, which she insists doing by herself, unless she feels like holding my hand. She picks up her bike or her two dump trucks and carries them all the way over to the neighbor's yard to play with the boys. We are usually outside, swinging for days with our adopted big sister Opal, and playing in the dirt and rocks with a whole bunch of boys and dump trucks and shovels. Sometimes we venture to the library or Target. Always we eat lunch and take naps. When we wake up it's back being a tomboy or destroying the house with play. Exhausting? yes. Fun? Most definitely. I wouldn't change a thing about it right now. I wish she could stay this age forever.

And so, Vivian at 18 months is as follows:

Looks like:
Precarious climbing circus acts on every raised surface in the house.
Broken crayons in every nook and cranny and scribbled on bits of paper.
A wide blue-eyed face nodding with her whole body to say yes.
A little body in a little chair with a notebook and a handful of crayons, carefully coloring.
Sitting on her floor with books and puzzles scattered around her, "reading" out loud, flipping through pages, and then grabbing another book to read aloud.
Running in circles on the rug "getting dizzy" until she "falls down" and laughs uncontrollably.
Sitting on my lap in front of the mirror, copying me as I put on makeup.
Finding babies and helping them eat, putting their binkies in, and holding their hands. She's a little mama, that's for sure, and it's making my ovaries do that familiar dance. Ugh. I hate when that happens.

Sounds like: 
Constant babbling.
Screams of delight and mischief.
Words like stinky, shoes, cheese, Jesus, chicken, keys, mama and dad, more, milk, hi and bye.
Goofy, teasing laughter.
The sounds that cats, dogs, cows, elephants and lions make.
Counting to three.
Yelling "ready, set, go!" and running with arms stretched behind her like a superhero.
Humming and singing constantly, while doing actions to Popcorn Popping, Itsy Bitsy Spider, Herman the Worman and 5 Little Monkeys.
A yell, a grab and a wide-eyed, serious look when she's mad and wants something she can't have, and then a wild search for something she can bite that won't get her in trouble. Frustration much?

Feels like:
A small little body bumping into my legs because she follows me around so closely.
A small little bum backing up and sitting squarely on my lap, always with an armful of books or crayons.
Two little hands that tickle your back, and the mischeivious laughter that follows as she runs away.
Jumping and wrestling and climbing on me as we play.
Cuddling in our big rocking chair and watching bits and pieces of a Disney movie while eating snacks.
Sitting on the floor with the heater aimed at our feet, reading books and playing with blocks.

Smells like:
Syrup hair from breakfast.
Autumn air on red cheeks from playing outside for hours
Bubbles from that bath that she likes to flip around in, kick her legs and "swim".
Lotion that she loves to rub on her tummy, legs and face. Sometimes it's pretend, and sometimes it's real, but any kind of bottle (ketchup, perfume, glasses, lipstick) turns into lotion.
Dirt and rocks from the road that she is constantly digging and dumping with her shovels and trucks.

Tastes like:
Sugar and salt from helping me bake.
Goldfish crackers
Oatmeal and yogurt.
Chicken nuggets and milk, pizza and peas, Guacamole and brown rice and all kinds of fruit, always.
Baby hunger.

A few of her favorite things:

-Loves to help and will clean up anything you ask her to. I often find her in the kitchen with the broom sweeping the floor or on a chair with a dish towel wiping the counters.

-Loves music and dancing. She likes to bring me her earphones and my shuffle and then walk aroudn with them, listening and dancing. Lately, she has an opinion on what we listen to in the car. I could potentially surf the radio for 5 solid minutes asking her what she wants to listen to, watching for the whole body head nod, or whole body head shake. When she hears a song with a good beat, she nods her head to confirm and starts dancing, waving her hands in the air, bobbing her head and kicking her feet. It's exhausting, but I'm putting up with it now because it's so hilarious to see her with such strong opinions.

-Loves to help me bake and cook. Anytime I'm in the kitchen, she pushes a chair over to the counter, I help her up and give her a bowl and scraps of food, and she goes to town. Stirs and mixes, adds water with teaspoons and whisks in obscene amounts of salt. We have fun together, and I can't help but hope that it will be our thing we like to do together.

-Loves to find as many books as she can possibly carry, make her way to a chair just her size and climb into it to turn the pages in her book. She then proceeds to gather up all her books in her lap, wiggle down from the chair, and find a different chair to repeat the whole process with.


I love this little girl with all my heart (and even more now that's she's in nursery. WOOOT!)
And if any of you have discovered a way to stop time, I'll pay you double whatever your employer is.


  1. Oh this post is just so descriptive and delicious!! I'm loving every stage with my baby girl too...Viv you are so cute! And you have such an amazing momma!

  2. Such. a. cutie! Her Cornell jacket, so adorable. I love her curls and cute personality!

  3. We love you Viv! You have such a great momma! Come play with us soon :)

  4. This post just makes me feel too many emotions. She is growing up! Cuter than ever little Viv.

  5. I haven't read your blog for awhile. It makes me too sad. I miss that little girl more than I can say. I love your little family and am so proud of the wonderful mother you are. Wish I could reach through the phone and just cuddle Viv's cute little body.

  6. I haven't read your blog for awhile. It makes me too sad. I miss that little girl more than I can say. I love your little family and am so proud of the wonderful mother you are. Wish I could reach through the phone and just cuddle Viv's cute little body.



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