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Year Two: Addison Sophia

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S: Year Two: Addison Sophia

FC: A | Year Two: Addison Sophia

1: October 15, 2013 26 pounds 4 ounces 31.75 inches

3: 13 Months | Dear Addie:: We are a month into our second year and so far so good. Granted, we are also a couple weeks into Daylight Savings Time ending, which means we are a couple weeks into our sleep being all wacky. What's wrong with getting up at 8:30 again instead of 7:30? I should just be happy you aren't getting up at 6:30 still I guess. You are changing on a daily basis. You are constantly surprising me. Constantly wearing me out. You are so active and so antsy. You are on the move and interested in everything. You are experiencing some major separation anxieties. But you are growing and learning and changing constantly. You are cruising around furniture like it's nothing now. And even better you have figured out how to sit down. Awhile ago you started pulling yourself up like it was nothing but you were terrified to sit down. You would look down and then just started crying. But then you realized that it wasn't so bad to just sit down, so now you get up and down all the time. Lately you have tried letting go of whatever you are holding on to for a few seconds while standing still. You aren't a fan of trying to walk while holding on to our hands though; you act like you don't trust us. You are learning to trust us though and getting more comfortable moving around and walking. You are still eating anything and everything. I am constantly surprised when I give you something and you eat it. You would think I wouldn't be surprised anymore, but I am. I gave you sausage lentil soup and you loved it. Who knew?! Of course you still get cranky when you get hungry. And the newest thing you do is if you see me cooking then you have a complete meltdown, deciding that you need to be fed at that moment, and you cry and scream the entire time I cook. It is nice to be done with bottles and formula though. You love whole milk. You just drink it right up. You are getting about six teeth right now or possibly more. It always seems like you get all your teeth at once, which makes it pretty miserable sometimes. So you haven't felt great lately. On top of that you are going through some major separation anxiety. Major major separation anxiety. But we are getting through it. You are an awesome little girl. You are growing so fast. I have a hard time believing that you are already a year old. A month and a year to be exact. It always amazes me how much you change. How much you grow. How much you are learning. I love seeing the person you are becoming. I love you so much little girl. Love, Mama | October 26, 2013 Done with formula and bottles | October 27, 2013 Cruised around ottoman | October 31, 2013 weight: 26 pounds 4 ounces height: 31.75 inches head: 18.5 inches

6: 14 Months | Dear Addie:: I feel like every month I come back here to write you another letter, you have changed so much that I barely know where to start. And again that is true. You are forever changing. Growing so fast. Much faster than I think I'm ready for. You make me happy. You frustrate me. You exhaust me. You make me laugh. You make me want to have more kids. You make me not want to have more kids. You make life so much better than I ever thought it could be. I take all the bads - the teething, the sudden screaming at bedtime and during the night sometimes, the crankiness, the whining, the temper tantrums, the ignoring me - because there is so much more good. I love the giggling, the playing, the reading, the cuddling, the smiles, the splashing in the bathtub, the beautiful blue eyes. Lately you have been getting your molars and it hasn't been such a fun time. They have caused you to get sick on occasion. You have been a little crankier - not that I can blame you. Teething really isn't fun for anyone. On top of the molars, you are also going through a wonder week. And wonder weeks are definitely not fun. You are learning new things and developing, but it also means that you are a little crankier and little needier. It's always exciting to see what you figure out during this time and how you are changing, but the moodiness that comes along with it isn't what we would consider a good time. But you keep pushing through and we always seem to make it out better and stronger after each wonder week and this one won't be any different. You have been trying to stand on your own lately. You don't do it often and you don't exactly like to do it but you have been trying. The first time you did it, your dad more or less tricked you into it and you did great. But lately you have been trying on your own. It is usually only for a few seconds at a time but you are trying so that's exciting. You'll be walking in no time and I can't even imagine the trouble you'll get into then. Speaking of trouble, you have been pushing your boundaries lately. You have been testing me to see what you can get away with and what you get in trouble with. Of course, every time you get in trouble for the same thing you got in trouble for five minutes before, you act like it's a complete surprise and start crying. As frustrating as it is to scold you over and over again for the same things, it's kind of cute to see that look of surprise. However, you are getting better at listening. We have the hard and fast nos and that is the only time we use the word no. We try to limit it with you, otherwise I feel like I'm saying it all day. You have been getting better at listening to directions. You have been big on standing at the TV stand, which I don't like because I'm afraid you're going to knock it down on top of yourself. So I tell you that you need to sit down and most of the time you listen. You'll turn and look at me with puppy dog eyes then slowly sit back down. I thank you every time and you look a little proud of yourself. Again extremely cute! But you are also big on ignoring me. I think you think you can get away with more if you just act like you can't hear me. Usually that ends with me having to get onto you and that often leads to a temper tantrums. Yes, you have discovered temper tantrums. Yikes! You are such a smart little girl. You are discovering the world. You are pushing limits. You are learning new things. You love reading. You sit there and flip through each page one at a time then when you finish you go back to the beginning and start again. You can easily sit there for a good thirty minutes just studying your books. I love that you love books so much. The easiest way to calm you down is through a book. I pull one out and you get all excited then sit quietly while I read. Sometimes it does sound like you are trying to read along. We have no idea what you are saying yet, but you are trying hard. There are times when it sounds like you are saying things that you are really passionate about. You can only actually say a few words at this point: cat, duck, dada, mama, and hi. Although you aren't saying much, you are trying more things. You finally clapped a few weeks ago for the first time. Of course you haven't done it since but at least we know you can. You are getting better at waving. You usually wave at us during meal time for some reason. No idea why. Usually to wave bye to someone we have to get you started by moving your arm but then you take over and it's pretty adorable. You are an expert at high fives though. You seem to think to think it's funny to do it. So if all else false you can do that. I wish I could say that from 13 months to 14 months, it has been an awesome month with lots of positive changing but that's not completely true. It's been a rough month. You have been getting your molars and that just makes things miserable for everyone. But that doesn't make you any less adorable and lovable. We love all the cuddles that have come from this last month of not feeling great. You stopped cuddling with me months ago but this month you have been giving me all kinds of cuddling. I have loved it. Despite the somewhat bad month, I'm still excited about all that is happening. I'm excited about the next month. I'm excited for you to start walking, to learn to use the stairs, to try more foods, to try more activities, for Christmas, to start talking more. I'm just excited. You are a wonderful little person. My favorite actually. I love the person you are becoming. And I love you so much. Love, Mama

11: 15 Months | Dear Addie:: Here we are back here: 15 months. Wow! That is hard to believe. You are growing so fast. It seems that every time I look at you, you have grown taller, changed again. I look back at your earlier pictures and I see all your features just as they are now, but instead of looking like a baby, you look like a toddler. You look so much older. With every passing day you are looking older and changing. Your personality is getting stronger and more defined. I don't know where to even begin. You have been doing so much. You have such an amazing little personality. You laugh when you think something is funny. You make faces. You get upset, especially when you get in trouble or want something you can't have. One of the cutest thing is when we read to you Oh, The Places You'll Go. There are parts of the book that you giggle at every time. You even giggle when you are flipping through the book on your own And that doesn't just apply to that book, but just about anything. When things are funny, things are funny and you giggle. It's pretty adorable. You had a great Christmas. We were gone for five days which was the longest we have ever been gone, so we were a little worried about how you would do but of course you did amazing. You didn't mind the long drives, especially since we got you a portable DVD player so you can watch movies to whittle away the time. We were also worried about you sleeping in the port-a-crib, but again you did pretty well considering. By the end of our visits, you were starting to warm up and let a few people hold you. That was very big of you. Which I should mention, you still aren't big on doing that in general. You are such a mama's girl, except when daddy is around. You get pretty excited about daddy whenever he walks in the door. There is nothing like playing with daddy. Your biggest new thing is definitely climbing up stairs. A couple days after Christmas, after being gone for five days, we get home and were messing around the house. You were with your dad in the family room and I was in the kitchen. I hear your dad say my name, I turn around and see you halfway up the stairs. You had never gone up more than one step before, but you crawled all the way up like you had been doing it for months, never stumbling or struggling. The downside is that you can't go back down, which makes me nervous. Luckily, you are pretty good about just waiting at the top of the stairs and not trying, but it still makes me nervous. Your dad and I think it's a little funny that you can climb up the stairs before you can even walk. You have been big on testing your boundaries lately. If I scold you about something you aren't supposed to be doing or if I take something away that you can't have, then you get upset and start scream-crying. You have been trying to use your emotions to get what you want. Of course it doesn't work, but that doesn't mean you don't try. Sorry, kid, but I don't give in so easily. I know it's just a phase and you are just testing me and testing to see what you can get away with. Along with that is your new-found love of throwing things on the floor and having us get things for you. Oh the joys of being a 15 month old. It's the little things in life that delight you. On of the best things about the stage we are at is that we are down to one nap, which means you are tired when we get to nap time and you go down without a fuss. I love it. You have been sleeping 2-3 hours in the afternoon and I'm definitely not going to complain about that. It's the same for bedtime. We haven't quite been so fond of you getting up for two hours or so in the middle of the night ready to play. It's not every night, but it's more often than we would like. On the plus side, you have been sleeping until 9 am, which I'm loving. You are an amazing little girl. You have clear likes and dislikes. You are happy. You love playing. You love your daddy. You are smart. You are on the verge of walking - I would swear by that. You are forever changing. You love Stella cat - you say "hi cat" every day to her. I love you my sweet girl. I love the cuddles, the hugs (you are a great hugger), the happiness you bring to our lives. Just keep being you. I love you so much. Love, Mama | December 27, 2013 Climbed up stairs from family room to kitchen by herself

15: January 16, 2014 Climbed on couch for first time | Dear Addie:: Hey, toddler girl. You have been a toddler for several months now but every day I'm reminded more and more that you are actually a toddler. You are getting so big. You don't look like a baby anymore. You are changing and learning new things. And you definitely have meltdowns like a toddler. Oh the meltdowns. They are more common now. And they are a tough one. They come at no time in particular. I never really see them coming. They can happen at any moment, at any time. But the one time I know without a doubt is that a meltdown will happen when I tell you no. You get a big pouty lip and then the screaming starts. You don't care how calmly I explain to you that I'm telling you no because you are being unsafe for whatever my reason is, you just continue screaming. You do eventually calm down and move on, but for a few minutes it's pretty unpleasant. We are working on it. Any other meltdown happens at unknown times for unknown reasons. Sometimes I have to wait you out and other times I have to distract you. But we get through them. This last month you got sick for the first time. You had a little cold, couldn't breathe through your nose, which I was constantly wiping, plus you had a nasty cough. On the first day of your cold, you couldn't nap. Every time I went up, you were standing and just crying. So I decided instead of trying to force it, I picked you up and held you. I settled into the rocking chair and for the first time in over a year you slept on me. I hated that you were feeling so horrible, but it was nice to cuddle up with my little girl again. The cold held on for about a week and then you were back to normal (unfortunately I had a cold by then and was feeling pretty crummy). You have been on the move. No walking yet, but we'll get there. You climbed up on the couch for the first time, of course you held onto my shirt and pulled with all your might, but you got up. You haven't done it since but you have been trying to get your knee up onto everything. You'll be really climbing in no time. Right after Christmas you started going up the stairs but you couldn't go down. You would, and still stop at the top and just sit there. You don't attempt to go down but just sit there and wait. But now, if we get you turned around and started, you go back down the stairs. You are figuring out how to get started going back down - that you have to turn around and go feet first now. We have been practicing walking lately. You are learning to trust us. For a long time, you didn't seem to trust us to not let you fall, but now you are a little more willing to try. The only way we can get you to try walking is for your dad and I to sit a few feet apart, stand you up, and tell you to go give the other a hug. We used to have to hold on to your hands and waist, but now we don't have to hold on to your waist. You are getting really good. You tend to lean forward a little still, but you'll be moving in no time. You no longer cry when we help you walk. Now one of us can stand, holding on to your hands, and you'll walk a few steps before you decide that crawling is easier. You are stubborn, I'll give you that. But we are definitely getting closer. Not just because of the walking, but because you have been standing more by yourself lately. You will use me to stand up then you'll just stand there by yourself. I'm not completely sure that you are aware of what you are doing yet, but as soon as you do I think you'll just turn around and walk. You have always been stubborn and I wouldn't be surprised if you just completely surprise me one day by walking to me. That's just who you are. Lately you have been big with sitting at your little table you got from grandma and papa. You love it. You love it more now | 16 Months | January 17, 2014 weight: 28 pounds 11 ounces height: 33 inches head: 18.75 inches | January 21, 2014 Sick for the first time - runny nose, nasty cough - had it for about a week | January 28, 2014 Climbed down the stairs for the first time | February 3, 2014 Stood alone for minute or two at a time

16: that you have figured out how to get off the chair. You did a face plant the other day, but you didn't even cry. Face plants are pretty rare for you. Mostly you slide yourself until you are standing then you lower yourself to the floor to crawl. It's amazing to see you figure things out. Just the last month, I pulled out crayons and you have been loving it. You have been figuring out how to hold them. You have been trying to eat them. But mostly you like to pick them up and drop them on the paper, leaving dozens of little dots and marks across the paper. You love it. Your first crayon work of art made it to the fridge. You are still eating good. You fight me sometimes but mostly you will eat anything and everything. Recently, you have tried hiding your food next to you in your high chair, which gets you in trouble which leads to crying. But mostly you happily eat it. Sleeping is just the same too. You take one nap a day for 2-3 hours. You are sleeping about 13 hours at night, sometimes less and sometimes a little more. Trust me when I say that I'm loving it. I know it's going to change, but I'm milking it for all it's worth right now. I say this every month but it's true. You are amazing. You are forever learning. You are forever changing. You are beautiful. You are the life of this house. I get so excited watching you change on a daily basis. You are so smart. You are taking on the world like only you can. You are amazing, Addison Sophia. You are frustrating and exhausting. But so amazing. I love you so much. Love, Mama

18: Dear Addie:: 17 months. Wow! You are almost a year and a half. That's crazy! Time is just flying by. I think it would be okay if it just slowed down for a little while and let me catch up. You are constantly changing, constantly keeping me on my toes, and constantly moving. I'm fairly certain you never stop moving. Maybe that's truly the reason why you sleep so much, you just wear yourself out from moving around ALL the time. I wouldn't be surprised. This last month has been a rough one for us. Your dad was gone for three weeks and you hated it. You are such a daddy's girl, and I don't think any of us realized how much of a daddy's girl until he was gone. You did fine the first week. You would ask for dada, I would tell you that he was at work and you would just accept it. But by the beginning of the second week, you would just look at me like I was lying to you. You started throwing fits. You would push me away and scream because you wanted no one but your dad. You weren't sleeping all that great. It was just a rough few weeks. But we survived. And he came back just as I promised he would. I wasn't sure how you would react to him when you saw him for the first time. But when he got off the plane and walked to us, you just stared at him. Almost scowled at him for a minute or two. You were not happy with him. But after he took you, you put your head down on his shoulder and almost immediately fell asleep. You were exactly where you wanted to be. It was adorable. And ever since you have been playing with him whenever you can. You are smiling and happy. You are sleeping better. The fits are less. Things are back as they should be around here. Our daddy's girl has her daddy back. While your dad was gone, you started having meltdowns in the bathtub. You have always loved baths so I thought it was part of your anger that your dad was gone since he usually did bath time. But even after he got back you were still having meltdowns and trying to get out of the bathtub as quickly as possible when we actually went to wash you. It has nothing to do with the soap. You lose it when we pour water on you. I've tried everything I can think of. I've poured water on you, I've squeezed water gently on you using a washcloth, I've just got your skin wet using the washcloth. And nothing. Every method leads to you trying to get out of the bathtub and crying. I think it's just a phase, but I'm not a fan of this phase so let's move on from it and go back to loving baths. You are currently getting more teeth again. And when you get teeth, you get a whole bunch at once. That makes things no fun because you don't feel good. Mostly you are still my happy kid, but you do go through bouts of crankiness that I can only assume are related to the teeth. However, I'm not sure how related this is to teething but you have been a bear when it comes to sleeping lately. Whenever things are out of whack and you're getting teeth, they are usually connected but not necessarily. I have no idea what's going on but you've been up and down all night for the last week. You are doing that some when your dad was gone which I expected but since he's been back you started doing it again. No clue why. We mostly ignore you - sorry, kid - because you are just talking, squealing, giggling, playing. But I don't really want to talk to you at 1 in the morning. But that means you've been sleeping until 10 and still going down for your regular nap because you are so tired. We are stuck in a loop and it's a loop I hope you'll correct yourself soon. You still aren't walking. You are getting closer, but still nothing yet. You can stand by yourself and I think you'll start doing that more once you figure out what you're doing and can do it. You are a much bigger fan of walking now but still not doing it solo or even just hanging on to one hand while you walk. You are too unbalanced to do it yourself. You just lean too far forward but once you learn to even out your weight you will be off and going. The question is, will you be doing it before 18 months and your next appointment? You're making me nervous, kiddo. At 9 months, a milestone is to be able to clap. You have just started doing it. We saw you do it once or twice around 9 months but otherwise you had no interest. In the last two weeks or so you have decided you love it. You clap at everything. Stella walking by gets you clapping. When I point out something to you, you clap. Dinner time, you clap. Nothing at all is happening, you clap. You love it and you get so excited to do it every time. You aren't big on waving good-bye still but you'll get there too. You always do things in your own time when you are good and ready. | 17 Months

20: You have also starting pointing recently. But not the usual form of pointing, you actually put your pointer finger and thumb together to point at things. I know what you are doing and you are pointing at everything these days. I tell you what it is and we move on. You are loving pointing because you have learned that it's a good way to communicate with me and ask for what you want. Granted, you don't always get what you want but you try anyway. At dinner now, I will ask you to eat something. You will then point to your food, pretend to pick it up, show me the food that isn't in your hand, then put it in your mouth like you are eating it. You will do that several times until we call you out on fake eating then you'll get to eating, which you are still doing awesome at and trying new things all the time (the craziness thing you love: fish - you are a weird kid!) You are growing so quickly. You babble a lot, and there aren't too many new words on a regular basis yet but every once in awhile you say something new. Your language skills should start developing even more in the coming months. Although you are mostly speaking in babble, you are learning to communicate. You are learning through pointing, clapping, through showing emotions. And you are a trooper. You weren't happy when your daddy was gone and you didn't understand it, but you did awesome. You are so curious about the world. You study everything, take everything in. You are observing and exploring. You have definitely made life more exciting and interesting. Sometimes I still have trouble believing that you are all ours. You are so beautiful and so smart and so curious. I look forward to when you actually figure out that you can walk and to see that excitement in your eyes when you realize what you're doing. I look forward to you learning more words and communicating verbally with us more. I look forward to you figuring more things out. You are one awesome kid, Addison. Stay that way. We love you so much. Love, Mama

22: 18 Months | Dear Addie:: You are now a year and a half. That definitely doesn't seem possible. This last year and a half has flown by so quickly. You have changed and grown so much. I know I say that every month but it is just as true this month as last month. You hardly seem like the same little girl. You are so beautiful and so excitable. You move all the time and you are fast. You are learning so much every day. I love watching you discover the world. Lately your favorite thing is definitely emptying shelves. You are a big fan of that. I'm not such a fan but you are stubborn and you like what you like. You start unloading and keep going until every last book or DVD is off the shelf. You study each one and stack them up. Then you spend the next hour or so sorting and moving from pile to pile. It's kind of cute but incredibly messy. Luckily, you have been a little into cleaning lately. You emptied all 101 cookie cutters all over the place then when I told you it was almost nap time, you spent a good chunk of time putting them all away again. I'm all about the cleaning up stage if you want to hang out in this stage for a bit. We have made no progress on walking. In fact I think we have regressed. You hate walking and in fact are pretty much refusing to do it. I was really hoping you would be walking by now but it just isn't happening. You are stubborn, I'll give you that. I think there's a reason why you aren't walking but your dad thinks you are just being stubborn and you know that crawling is easier and risk-free so you'll just stick with that. Regardless, you aren't walking and you don't want to even practice walking with us, so we'll be getting some help into why you aren't and how to help you. You were big on throwing things for awhile and I still catch you throwing things sometimes. You either get too excited so things get tossed or when you are taking things off the shelves, you are tossing things behind you. Well, we had to put an end to that. It only took me a couple times of removing you from the DVDs you were throwing before you started "punishing" yourself whenever you threw something. You would cry before I could even say no and put your head on the floor. You definitely throw less now. Apparently you do listen after all. You don't necessarily say a lot other than babble and dada but you do understand. You are talking some. You said Stella and good the other day. You are starting to say more words but mostly it's still babble. But I know you understand. I can ask you a question and you respond in your own way. You also do great at following directions. I can ask you to bring me something or do something and you do what I say. I'm liking that a lot. You have discovered the art of temper tantrums. We are up to a couple a day now. I don't like them too much. Usually you cry, bend forward and put your head on the floor, then roll to your back and lay on the ground crying and pounding your butt over and over on the floor. I just wait you out. Normally you calm yourself down and move on. I try not to give you attention which is really what you want while throwing these tantrums. Sometimes you do the head on the ground and roll thing without crying. That is definitely better than the screaming. You are stubborn and hard-headed that's for sure, but you are going up against the person you got those qualities from so you probably aren't going to win. You are just as beautiful as ever. You are changing all the time and you never stop growing. You are just so big now and I can't believe you are actually a year and a half. That just doesn't seem possible. You'll be two before I'm ready. You have a beautiful smile and an awesome personality. I love the person you are becoming. I love you so much, sweet girl. Love, Mama

27: Dear Addie:: We are another month closer to two, which seems impossible to me. Aren't you still the little tiny newborn we just brought home from the hospital and had no idea what to do with? No? No, you definitely aren't. You barely seem like the same girl at times. You are my forever growing and changing girl. Although you are still fond of handing me books and whatever else you find, you are finding more things that keep your interest. You are figuring out puzzles more and love stacking rings. We recently got you a toy kitchen and you spend a lot of time playing with it. But with the nice weather these days, we are spending more time outside. We have a tricycle that you love to play on. You also love the new swing set that Grandma and Papa built for you, plus a sand and water table. You definitely love swinging. I actually have trouble getting you away from swings. I'm pretty sure you can sense a swing from miles away. Lately you have been in a mama phase. You still love your daddy. How could you not? But you tend to prefer me lately, which is okay. I like all the hugs and snuggles. You tend to have meltdowns if you are playing with your daddy or he is getting you ready for bed and I walk by without stopping to sit with you. It's a little exhausting but I should appreciate the phase while it's here. You might hate me when you're a teenager one day, but let's not think about that yet. Although you have taken a couple of independent steps, you still aren't walking by yourself yet. You are getting more confident however. You are more willing to talk just holding on to one hand. Your balance has improved so much. You no longer lean forward when you walk. You can stand by yourself even though you don't think you can do it. You are definitely more sure on your feet but you still aren't quite there yet. You are starting to speak a bit more. Recently you have said: silly, good, that, Stella, water and you started to say book. Or at least what sounded like the start of book. It's slow going with the talking and you don't do it a lot but you are learning to communicate more so that's definitely good. It's still extremely hard to understand you but you are definitely talking. You understand a lot better than you talk right now. Not that you always listen and follow directions but you understand what I'm saying and sometimes it gives you hesitation before continuing to do whatever you are not supposed to be doing. But you are 19 months and you are still exploring so there's that. Beyond that, not much else has changed. You are still my amazing sleeper. You still eat anything and everything. You have gotten quite good at temper tantrums, and I have gotten quite good at ignoring them. When you start throwing one, you get put in our temporary "time-out" corner. I basically put you in the dining room where you scream and cry and roll around on the floor. Once you're done working out your issues and have calmed down, you come crawling back and we move on. You are stubborn, hard-headed and determined. You drive me crazy sometimes and completely wear me out all the time. But you are pretty awesome. You are sweet and beautiful. As it turns out I'm pretty fond of you. I love watching you grow and explore. You are an amazing little girl. You just keep on being you. I love you so much, sweet girl. Love, Mama | 19 Months | April 18, 2014 weight: 30 pounds 3.5 ounces height: 35 inches head: 19 inches | April 28, 2014 walked holding on to only one hand | April 30, 2014 took two steps by yourself

30: 20 Months | Dear Addie:: It feels like so much changes but at the same time, so little. You are still the same lovable girl as ever, but you are growing more stubborn every day. You definitely like to have things a certain way and you don't handle it well if they don't go your way. Unfortunately you got that tendency from your mama. And apparently you keep picking up more things from me. Maybe that's because you are still in the mama phase. You love your dad but he gets home and you come crawling behind my legs, and hold on for dear life. You aren't a big fan of walking with your dad either. Maybe there's some trust issues going on, but whenever we walk, more than not you are reaching for my hand. I'm not complaining because pretty soon you'll be done with the mama phase and that will be that, but sometimes a little space is nice. You are in love with Clifford. Actually you are in love with anything dog. Go figure then that we have a cat. Puppy is forever puppy. But Clifford is popular. You spent a lot of time looking at the books and hugging the stuffed animal. Your new favorite is 101 Dalmatians. We were driving the other day and I could have swore you said puppies. So I told you that you had puppy, but you said it again. Then I realized you wanted to watch puppies. Luckily for you I had already told you we would. You just sit there and cuddle and zone out to the movie. However, Cruella DeVilla scares you sometimes. I don't blame you at all, she is a little scary. You still aren't walking, although I think we are the closest we have ever been. The other day you walked the length of the driveway while chasing daddy. That is huge. You were sure on your feet and did great. You have also started letting go by yourself more to walk to things, which is something just a week ago you refused to do. You want to walk all the time. You aren't a fan of being carried or riding in things all the times. You want to get down and toddle along. You walk like a pro holding on to just one finger. Now we are just building up your confidence to show you that you really can do it. It's been a long road and we aren't quite there yet but we will be. We are definitely getting there. Unfortunately we aren't getting there soon enough and we still have your MRI scheduled a few days from now, in which you will be sedated and I am definitely not looking forward to that. Right now you are big with puzzles. You will sit for big chunks of time and put together puzzles. You like your noisy puzzles but also you like to put shapes into your turtle. You are getting pretty good at it. You are definitely figuring stuff out. Another thing you spend a lot of time doing is sticking things into small spaces. You like what fits where. The problem with that is that you can't get them back out again or they are impossible to find later. You are always up to something and hiding something somewhere. You definitely have more meltdowns than you used to. But we are learning to deal with them. Most of your meltdowns come when someone doesn't do something the way you want. You still like to hand books back and forth and when I say no thank you and not take it, you get angry. You start crying/pouting and sometimes you hit me with whatever it is. So you have now learned what time-out is. You cry and scream until you can settle yourself down. But you are learning to deal when things don't go the way you want them to. It's just taking time. You also have meltdowns at the park. Every single time we go. So we don't go much. You love swinging. You could spend all day on the swing. The problem with going to the park is that you have to share the swing, and you don't like that. You aren't interested in playing with anything else so when you don't get to swing you meltdown. I just wait you out and we try to play with something else again and by the time we are into our second meltdown we are heading home. You used to lose it every time I took you off the swing in our backyard, but now I set a timer for however long and tell you that we have to go inside when the timer goes off. I countdown for you and you hear when the timer goes off. And the last few times I have taken you out of the swing has gone really well. No crying. That's definitely an improvement and definitely makes me more willing to take you out to the backyard to swing more.

32: I swear everyday you grow more adorable. You do something and it just melts my heart. You might not be talking a whole bunch or heck even walking but you put your forehead against mine and I'm a goner. The only way you know to show affection is to put your forehead against someone else's and it is heart melting. The phase is definitely a hard one. You are getting more stubborn and more opinionated. But at the same time you are just as adorable and beautiful. It's amazing to see your personality, which parts are like me and which are like your dad. You keep me on my toes always, but I guess that's what makes life fun. Never change who you are. In fact if you want to stay my little girl forever then feel free to do that. I love you so much, sweet girl. Love, Mama

34: Dear Addie:: If there is one thing you are good at, it's keeping me on my toes. You keep me guessing from day to day. I guess that's what makes life interesting. But you sure are at a fun stage. It also means you are in an exhausting stage and a stage where you are in trouble a lot. But like I said, we have a lot more fun than not. There are so many things that you're interested in. Last time I brought out play dough, all you wanted to do was eat it and watch me throw it into the air, but now you are more interested in playing with it. You'll even touch it which is big in your little world since you hate touching things. I pull out the cookie cutters and we make shapes in the play dough. But to be honest, your favorite thing to do is to put the play dough back into the container and close lid. You just like cleaning up. You have also developed an interest in coloring, which I love. It's fun to sit with you and color together. You get pretty proud when I praise you on your good coloring. You would easily spend all day outside if I let you. You just love the fresh air. We do just about everything we can outside. We swing, play in the water and sand table, splash in your pool, blow bubbles, color with sidewalk chalk, go for walks. But your favorite thing about being outside is that you can see airplanes. I've been thinking about taking you to the airport just to watch the planes. As soon as you hear one, you stop whatever you are doing and start pointing to the sky. I ask you if you see it and you exclaim, "yeah!" loudly and happily. Then you watch it as long as you can. Luckily there's a little airport not too far from our house so we see quite a few planes overhead. Airplanes are definitely your favorite right now. You even dig the plane cookie cutter out of your 101 cookie cutters for me to fly around above you. Inside you love to gather up all your stuffed animals on the couch then get yourself under them and peek over the top. They are all pretty much dogs and monkeys with a couple bears and an Olaf mixed in. You have started to do more pretend play. I hold my phone up to my ear and say hello and you do the same thing with your play phone and chat to me. You like to drink out of your tea cup and sometimes straight out of the teapot. And you love to help. Whenever you can you are right there. You hand me laundry to fold. You put things in the cart at the grocery store. You put silverware and sometimes puppy into the dishwasher. You take the broom away from me if I don't get your little one out. You pick up my little vacuum to help out. And you put things back, like you take out all your dad's shirts from his drawer and then you try to put them all back. You are definitely in helpful stage. You love to dance. We listen to music all the time and you like to groove back and forth however you can. Lately when you get really excited, you clinch your hands into fists, close your eyes, yell and shake with excitement. It is probably the most adorable thing I have ever seen. You are very into Tinker Bell right now. You still love the old standbys of Frozen, 101 Dalmatians, and The Princess and the Frog, but Tinker Bell is a favorite currently. You are three months from turning two and you still aren't walking. You are so stable and in control when you do walk, but we just can't get you to do it. It's frustrating, but everyday we are getting closer to walking. Your MRI results were thankfully good, even though there was a spot. There is nothing we have to do about it so that's a relief. I never want to do something like that again, that's for sure. And I'm sure you would be glad not to do it again either, since you didn't seem to like the drugs in your system. We are still trying to figure out the mystery of why you aren't walking, and we are now getting help from not just doctors but other services as well. Those same services are going to help us with your language skills too. Although you understand and follow directions, you aren't saying a lot of words. So we are just going to get some help to get you on track. But just because you are a little behind, doesn't mean you aren't an awesome, smart little girl. | 21 Months | June 20, 2014 MRI on brain to check for any abnormalities | July 10, 2014 Evaluation by Infant Toddler Services | June 24, 2014 Results from MRI. There was a spot in right occipital lobe. Unclear if reason for regression

36: And that smartness sometimes gets you in trouble. You watch everything and try to do everything, and that's not necessarily a good thing. But you are definitely learning. There are still more temper tantrums than I would like, but they are less and farther in-between. I haven't had to put you in time-out in a week or so now, which is always a good thing in my book. You at least listen and seem to pay attention to what gets you in trouble. If only we could just get you past the hitting stage. You seem to think it's funny. I, however, do not and that gets you in trouble. You also hit and throw things when you are upset and frustrated, which only makes the whole situation worst. But you are only 21 months and are still learning how to handle your emotions and such. We have had some rough days but there are so many more good days. You are in a really fun stage right now. You play all day. You bring me books to read. We talk. We spend our time outside. It's fun to see the world through your eyes. In fact I love the way the world looks through your eyes. You keep being interested in everything. you keep learning, you keep that innocence. Just keep being you. I love you, sweet girl. Love, Mama

37: Dear Addie::

39: 22 Months | Dear Addie:: You are getting smarter and smarter all the time. You are definitely a sharp little cookie. You are very observant. For instance, you know what Kleenexes are for. In fact, you dug a packet out of my purse, pulled them out one at a time and wiped your nose on them. You emptied the package. It was adorable but a bit wasteful. You haven't quite gotten the wastefulness concept yet. Luckily your smartness isn't just connected to wastefulness. You can also organize mega blocks by color and size. You brought me a bunch stacked together to hand back to you in pieces. So I did but I'll confess I wasn't paying any attention. And when I looked down you were stacking them back up by color and size. I watched you for awhile and I was very impressed with you. I shouldn't be surprised, you love to organize. The big news is definitely that you are officially a walker! It seemed to happen overnight. You have been walking around holding onto one hand for a long time. Then we were able to get you to let go so you would walk to your dad down the hall and into your room every night. We slowly started pushing you a little farther. We tried to see if you would walk a little farther and over time you did. We cheer for you every time and you even clap for yourself. Over time, we got you walking around Target. In fact, you were pushing the cart around Target even. But we still couldn't get you to push your little shopping cart around the house other than on your knees. Then one day we got you up and before you realized it, you were walking. We were thrilled. We just kept letting go and trying to let you walk by yourself. Then one day you started letting go. One day you came walking around the corner from the sitting room into the kitchen by yourself. And now you keep going. Of course you still crawl and walk on your knees, but you are walking. You let go and off you go. You are also trying to stand up by yourself in the middle of the room. Up to this point you have only been able to get up with help from us or by pulling yourself up, but finally you got your feet under you and pushed yourself to standing for the first time. We hit all kinds of firsts this month. We couldn't be happier. You have come so far and we are so proud. You are jabbering a lot but there are still not a lot of words coming out. The words that we can get you to say are usually very functional. And the words are actually more of phases. You aren't a single word kind of gal. But we are figuring out other methods of communication until we can get you talking. You show me what you want by putting my hand on whatever you want or going to what you want, like when you are hungry you go to your chair in the kitchen. And now I'm learning sign language so I can teach you. So far you got "all done" down. I showed it to you a couple of times and by the third time you were mimicking me. And now I can ask you if you are done and you do the sign. You are my genius. We are just going to keep learning signs because you and me have to communicate, kid. There are plenty of other things that are pretty adorable. You have learned how to blow kisses. It's heart melting. Every night I kiss you good night then in the doorway I blow you a kiss and you blow me a kiss back. Granted your kiss is really you putting your hand in your mouth and flinging slobber at me, but I know what you're doing so I'll take it. You are obsessed with Stella. You follow her around the house and every time she walks into the room you point and clap. I try to get you to say cat but instead you almost always say Stella in return. Apparently cat is too simple for a word for you. You are very observant though. You have watched me pat the space next to me to get Stella to come. So you have started | July 19, 2014 Turned around the corner to your bedroom by yourself for first time | July 20, 2014 Walked by yourself pushing your shopping cart | July 31, 2014 Start physical therapy | August 6, 2014 Walking by yourself consistently - we officially are calling you a walker | August 13, 2014 Stood in the middle of the room by yourself for first time

40: doing that after you finish pointing and clapping. Stella rarely comes but that doesn't stop you. And it's pretty cute. Your likes haven't changed too much. You are very into Tinker Bell though. I think it's because she flies. You love things that fly. You still like all those other Disney movies but Tinker Bell is the top choice of movies right now. You still eat like a champ, although you get really opinionated when you don't want to eat something and more than once you have been put in time-out for tossing your plate on the floor. You sleep like a pro. It's still 12 hours a night and a two and a half hour nap. Mama is definitely loving that. You are big into stuffed animals right now. Sometimes you put them in your little chairs at your table, sometimes you pile them up in front of you, and sometimes you just make them hug. Whatever it is you are doing it's cute so it doesn't matter what makes you happy at this point. You are in a fun stage and I am loving it. You are so smart and observant. You are always watching and learning. You like moving around and getting outside. You still love reading, and you love getting a book, crawling into my lap in the middle of the day and settling in for me to read to you. I definitely love it too. It's hard to believe how big you are and that you are a mere two months away from turning two. That just doesn't seem possible. You are growing too fast. Try to slow it down a little. I love you so much, little girl. You have no idea. Love, Mama

42: Dear Addie:: You are keeping me on my toes. You definitely keep me busy. You are a very smart cookie. Too smart for your own good sometimes. You are very observant. You pay attention to everything and you mimic or try to do it yourself. The best part of you being so observant is that you are learning sign language. You are learning that we can communicate that way. You are learning quickly. You know "all done," "eat," and "more" right now. We are working on a few more still. One of the only things I can always get you to say is Mickey. You love Mickey Mouse. You are trying to make animal sounds, but usually only if I make the sound first. You can quack really well. You do that all by yourself every time you get into the bathtub because you love your rubber ducks. Otherwise you are pretty mum on the words, but you babble a lot. You do a lot of babbling. But you are hilarious still. Just watching you do things and figure things out is amazing and sometimes just plain funny. A few weeks ago you walked up to me, looked at me, patted my head, and walked away. That was it. It was definitely strange but was hilarious. I laughed for a long time about that. Speaking of laughing, you are a master of fake laughing. We have been watching Ellen during this last week and when you hear people on there laughing you break out this crazy, loud fake laugh then look at me like you want me to confirm that you did it right. You are finally up and moving all the time. You are all over the place. You do a fair amount of walking on your knees still and some crawling, but you are mostly walking. You love to walk. You have learned that it's the easiest way to get around and take with you whatever you want. The ankle braces have definitely helped. I can already see an improvement in your feet and you definitely walk faster with them on. It took some time but you are finally okay with them on your feet. At first you would scream and cry when I would put them on and now it's just apart of our day. It's a fun game when we finally get to take them off and we can wiggle our toes. Unfortunately because you have to wear shoes with your ankle braces, you are always in tennis shoes. And even more unfortunately you are always stepping on my toes. At least four times a day. You are really good at grinding into my feet. Despite our horrible "terrible twos" stage we seem to be in (a little early), you are definitely fun. You love to color. You love to chase Stella (she's not always so fond of that though). You play in your kitchen. You spend time figuring things out. You gather up and organize your stuffed animals. You play with your doll house. You spend all day talking and laughing. Every day is a new adventure with you. It may be impossible to go to stores with you by myself. It may be impossible to cook dinner some days. It may be impossible to get anything done. But you are so full of life. You have so much energy. You know how to melt my heart on a daily basis (yes, saying "I love you" to me a few days ago almost made me cry). You are the sweetest little girl. And I wouldn't trade a moment of time with you. I love you so much. Love, Mama | 2 3 Months

47: Dear Addie:: You are not two years old. You are not two years old. You are not two years old. Except you are two years old. How did that happen? It doesn't feel like its been two years since you came into our lives. You are growing so fast. You are the love of my life. You are one of two of my favorite people. You are amazing. You have completely changed my life. You have turned it upside down and inside out. In the best possible way of course. I look at your newborn pictures and I have a hard time believing you are the same girl. Heck, it's crazy to look at pictures from a year ago and believe you are the same girl. You have come so far in this last year. And I couldn't be prouder of you. The twos are already coming in like a lion. I always thought the terrible twos were just a myth, but I definitely don't believe that to be the case anymore. The terrible twos are definitely here and don't seem to be going anywhere anytime soon. You are stubborn and all about doing things yourself, except you can't do it all by yourself and that seems to make you angry. You have also taken to completely ignoring me when I say 'no.' Yes, I just love that. Some days are definitely longer than other days. But we have been working on that ignoring thing, which you don't love. We are officially done with the physical therapy part of help from Infant Toddler Services. Now we are primarily working with the early elementary and developmental specialist with your language and teaching you to be flexible. I know that sounds silly, "teaching to be flexible," but you take after me, kid, and you have some OCD traits. It's sometimes a battle but some days you give in to taking the animals out of the puzzle in a different order without a meltdown. We have also been working on identifying different animals and items because that's the first step to talking. Some animals confuse you - a hippo and rhino look a lot alike in our puzzle. At least I think you get confused which animal is which, but there's a pretty good possibility you are just being stubborn and don't want the monkey but you want the snake. I'll admit that I'm pretty sure you know the difference but the stubbornness is just showing its ugly head. Whatever the case, you are getting much better. You are great at puzzles. You spend huge chunks of time just sitting there taking your puzzles apart and putting them back together. You just recently mastered your alphabet puzzle. It's pretty awesome how fast you are learning things. It's not that you can recite your alphabet, but you are at least putting the letters in correctly. Along with puzzles, you love coloring. You spend a lot of time coloring and sorting through all the crayons. You are an artist in the making. My left handed artist in the making. You are your father's daughter without a doubt. You look a lot like me. There are pictures of me when I was your age and we look pretty much the same. Plenty of people have said, not knowing me as a child, that you look like me. But your personality is your dad's. You are very visual when it comes to learning. You love to figure things out. You are too smart for your own good sometimes. But sometimes you surprise us with those observation skills of yours. You love to watch your dad do wood working. You just sit there and watch. When he was screwing things in the other day, you watched him take screws from a pile and put them in. The next thing he knew you were handing him the screws that he needed when he needed them. You love to help. Unfortunately your helping skills don't extend to your dear mama. You tend to think it's better to get under-foot and are often counter-productive to whatever I'm doing. But you wouldn't be you without being selective in your helping skills. I haven't even mentioned you picking things up, carrying them of, and hiding them somewhere so it takes me a month to find them. | 24 Months | October 14, 2014 weight: 33 pounds height: 37 inches head: 19 inches

48: You are the joy to my life. You are a pain in the butt. You wear me out. You frustrate me. You give me endless worry. But mostly you are my perfect little girl with a thousand nicknames. You are smart. You are beautiful. Happy birthday, bubs! I love you so much! Love, Mama

51: October 15, 2014 33 pounds 37 inches

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Becca Evans
  • By: Becca E.
  • Joined: almost 7 years ago
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About This Mixbook

  • Title: Year Two: Addison Sophia
  • Letters to Addison from Mama during her second year of life.
  • Tags: None
  • Published: about 5 years ago