Sunday, April 29, 2012

What Ava is Up to These Days

Life with a 2-year old is exhausting but so much fun! Parents everywhere understand what I mean. Let's just use the example of changing her clothes. I take off a shirt and Ava will run away. Then I grab her and we try to put her clean clothes on, then repeat. She runs away squealing say "Going to get you." She wants to be chased!

Before I became a mother, I heard parents say that they stay fit by "chasing after their kids." Woh! Now, I get it. Not only are you chasing them, but you're carrying them sometimes kicking and screaming. I swear it's a workout! Ava is now up to 26 pounds. Her seemingly insatiable appetite is now evident by how much she's growing. At her birth she was 21 inches and she maintains her taller stature, but she's been pretty lean since her 1st birthday. We try to maximize her calorie intake by offering her nut butters and hummus. She loves both! I offered her some hummus and pita chips this afternoon when she woke up from a nap. After 3 servings later, I put the container away and she said "bye bye, hummus. Love you." It was hysterical. I think it's so funny when she says bye bye to inanimate objects like her baby stroller or some other fun toy.

We're spending lots of time outside these days. Aaron got a ton of top soil and mulch for the yard a few weeks ago. We (mostly Aaron) have been slowly putting it around the yard. Aaron is brilliant with home projects! He amazes me! We have a rocky area from a pool that a previous homeowner covered up. We're trying to fill the bare spots in with soil to grow grass. Ava loves to be outside! She watches us and likes to help. Today Aaron was digging to make a spot for the base of a new play set we inherited from a friend! She picked up another shovel to help Daddy. I wish I got a picture of that!

When I pick her up from daycare, she tells me about her day. I ask her if she has fun and she usually responds "Yes" with enthusiasm. She tell us about her friends and about her activities. Her care givers leave us little stories about her day, which is so nice! Here's a previous post from some daycare stories. Ava is in the midst of transitioning to the 2-year classroom at daycare. She will have big changes in her day with language arts and she will walk to the cafe for lunch with her class.

Ava got a play kitchen from "ma-ga" and "pa-ga" (her name for her Berkey grandparents). If you ask her what she's making she usually says she's cooking pizza. She likes to pretend to pour water and will offer you some apple juice in the cup. We pretend to drink it.

I recently got her a Baby Stella doll. She loves it! Last weekend, it was new so she wouldn't do anything without her baby. She likes to take the clothes and diaper on and off. Ava especially likes to put the baby's paci in her mouth. It has a magnet underneath the material so you can put the paci in front of the mouth and it holds. Ava likes to nurse her baby doll, pat her to sleep and take her for stroller rides. When we move around the house to different levels, she asks "baby comin?" She loves to take her toys up and down the stairs with her. Even the key ring or rock. It's really funny how she brings the toys around with her.
The last few months when I pick Ava up from daycare, she takes off running. Then on Friday, it took us forever to get out of there because she found an open door to this giant playroom where there are a ton of fun toys like this play kitchen and shopping cart. There are ride on cars. She was glued. I thought if I put her sunglasses on her she would be interested in going back to the car. 
Ava is really interested in the ABC's and "writing." She asks for paper and pen to write and asks me to write her name. She likes the paper with the lines. She makes marks both tiny and large. She loves to count! When she counts to 10 she often forgets 6. Her favorite number is 2. When she sees 2 of anything she exclaims "2!"
Our bedtime routine is pretty smooth. Usually Ava falls asleep from exhaustion because she's so busy. We get her in her pajamas, brush her teeth and she drinks some water. Then we read a book and she nurses to sleep. Here's a picture in a rare moment of my hair up. Ava gets really upset when my hair is up, especially when she's nursing. She says "Mommy hair down." So funny. She likes to play with my hair. It's really sweet. Our favorite PJs are a long sleeve onesie and some Baby Legs (leg warmers). She is so warm in that and it looks cozy. She likes her feet bare when she sleeps. Ava is like her Daddy and runs warm.

I wish I could write all the fun things that she's saying right now. Ava is such a great communicator. We talk about the size of things (big, little), temperature (hot, warm, cold), bye bye and home, transportation (cars, trucks, airplanes), relationships (mama, daddy, grandparents, siblings). We talk about everything. She understands the difference between "eat" and "eating." It's fun to see her conjugate her verbs now. At mealtimes she'll say "no like it" or "I like it" and won't touch what she doesn't like. Her favorite foods are spinach-ricotta lasagna, homemade pizza, fish, hummus, steel cut oats (mixed with dates), scrambled eggs, peanut butter toast, fruit and yogurt smoothies, homemade muffins, yogurt, granola and soy milk, naan bread, homemade healthy cookies, and quesadillas. I made her some quick, homemade chicken nuggets out of the chicken breast we were eating last night for dinner. She sang a song about chicken and couldn't get enough. We're having so much fun!

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