Tag Archives: monthly update

Currently // 05.30.13

IMG 1442Watching:  Local musician Will Stroet‘s DVD.  She first fell in love with the songs while listening to Walk & Roll in the car, and after attending his concert and receiving a copy of his music DVD, she’s hooked.  She thinks Henry the Meowing Dog is absolutely hysterical and Full of Beans ranks second favourite.

Singing: 22 by Taylor Swift and Reading Revival by Will Stroet.  The funniest part is that if I try to sing either, she generously corrects my lyrics.  This girl has a memory like nothing else.

Playing:  Right now there is a whole lot of dress-up happening in our house.  She absolutely adores her dress-up centre and if we’re at home, she’s most likely in tutu and giraffe mask or a pink poodle costume, with her bedroom floor being absolutely covered in dress-up items.

Talking about: For the past week and a half or so, she’s been talking about when she gets bigger.  Constantly.  She asks about what it’s like to be an adult and lists all of the things she’s excited to do in the future.  So far, her main ones are: crossing the road by herself, having a job, walking in parking lots alone, driving a car, and going to university.  Oh, and having a baby.  There’s lots of talk about having a baby inside her belly right now.  Oy.

Reading: Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss.  Up until recently, she wasn’t a huge Dr. Seuss fan.  I found that she enjoyed the first little bit of the story, but would move on before we’d finished the book.  Now, she’s really into longer books and more complex story lines.  She even ‘reads’ Green Eggs and Ham to me now!  The other book we’ve been reading on repeat is the slightly random Biblioburro.  She signed it out from the library, and though I  normally {sneakily} skip the page with the bandit holding the weapon, it does have a lovely message about giving and the joy of reading. 

Eating: Current favourites include asparagus, Babybel cheese, cantaloupe, wholewheat pasta (always pasta), tofu, breakfast banana splits, crackers of any sort, Trader Joe’s apple sauce squeezy pouches, these popsicles, and bagels with cream cheese.

Inspired by the Currently posts on Sometimes Sweet.


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Currently // 02.22.13

Photo copy 3Watching:  To be honest, not a whole lot.  Though we turn on the television for a little bit each day while she slurps up her post-nap milk, lately she just hasn’t been interested.  We usually end up turning it off 3 minutes later and move on to reading books instead (which suits me just fine ☺).  Besides that, she does still enjoy watching her usual music videos.

Singing: ‘This Girl is on Fire’ by Alicia Keys.  With a carrot microphone naturally.  That or a broccoli spear will do.  

Playing:  ‘Kick’, which basically involves kicking or throwing a beach ball back and forth again and again.  It just never seems to get old.  What’s amazing is how much her gross motor skills have developed lately…  Throwing, catching, and jumping off and over things seem so natural to her now.  The other thing she’s been doing lately is “exercising”.  Sometimes I’ll find her in the middle of the room, our bath mat under her, doing some strange bending/curling/squatting/crunching movement repeatedly.  Other times I’ll call her and she’ll respond with a frank “Sorry, Mama!!!  I’m busy right now.  I’m exercising!” Such a funny little lady we have.

Talking about: “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  “What ’cause?”  It never.ever.ever.ends.  So when the fourth “What ’cause?” to my response to her original comes along, I take a breath and remind myself that each question is an opportunity to be the kind of parent I want to be. Because sometimes that’s what it takes.

Reading: Sit, Truman was one of her recent library favourites.  The best part was that after a week or so of reading it multiple times a day, she began reading it to us.  There’s something about listening to your little one “read” a book that just melts a parent’s heart.  As for home books, Scholastic’s Number Tales (books I have for teaching) have, without a doubt, been a clear favourite for the last month.  Each of the books has a ‘Can you find…?’ page at the end, which Grae just adores despite their simplicity.  Because of this, Grae’s deemed them “game books” and nothing else will do before bedtime.  

Eating: Okay, so technically this is drinking and not eating, but this girl loooves tea.  She first had it at Baba’s house during our crazy Christmas adventure and she fell in love immediately (tea in fine china for everyone – including kids – has been something that’s happened in my Baba’s house since I was Gracen’s age).  Since then, I’ve found some really yummy caffeine-free tea that are also free of weird herbs that may not be kid-friendly, so Miss G’s been enjoying a cup of tea with an ice cube as a special treat every now and then.  

Danielle from Sometimes Sweet, a blog I’ve followed for a very long time now, does regular Currently posts which inspired my Gracen-modified ones. ☺

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Currently // 1.14.13

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Watching:  Strangely enough, this video.  Brad and I laugh about it all the time.  Not only is about all things spooky {and our little girl has been known to be frightened of a loud sneeze}, but the song itself is hilariously odd.  It’s slow and soft, yet surprisingly upbeat all at once. “Spooky things doing a spooky dance….”  Kills me every time.

Singing:  Right now, every song she hears.  This little lady is a total music lover who chooses to watch music videos over television and can often be found dancing and singing while doing other activities.  New favourites added to her repertoire include Take Me Out to the Ball Game, Rock-a-Bye Baby, Spooky Spooky, and I’ll Love You Forever. 

Playing:  Dress-up. Constantly.  Poppop recently made her a wooden dress-up centre and she got all kinds of costumes and accessories for it for Christmas.  It’s not unusual for us to have a fairy, jester, or cat roaming around the house nowadays.  In fact, yesterday I took a pink poodle out for a walk around the neighbourhood.

Talking about: Everything. Non-stop. Our days are question after question after question.  “What’s that?”, “What’s it called?”, “Why for?”, “Who’s dat?”, “What his name is?”, “What dat sound is?”, “What’s Mama talking about?”

Reading:  Goodnight Goon by Michael Rex.  She and Papa picked it our at our latest library visit, and despite the fact that she can be ultra sensitive and the book is about a ‘cold gray tomb with a black lagoon, and two slimy claws, and a couple of jaws’ etc., we’ve read it every day before both nap time and bedtime since we checked it out.

Eating:  During our 3 weeks of vacation, I think she ate her weight in pistachios, cashews, and other fancy nuts we don’t normally keep around.  Now that we’re home and getting back into a routine, we’ve been making smoothies each morning (which has been great for getting a good amount of green veggies into our breakfasts) and she loves the whole process – gathering ingredients, making the smoothies, and slurping them up.

Danielle from Sometimes Sweet, a blog I’ve followed for a very long time now, does regular Currently posts which inspired my Gracen-modified ones. ☺

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Currently // 12.14.12

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Watching:  Her usual Youtube favourites… Robyn’s ‘Call Your Girlfriend’ (the original song this favourite is based on), this video of Taylor Swift’s ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together’, and ‘Colours of the Rainbow’ by The {slightly over the top} Gigglebellies.

Listening to:  Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.  Again and again and again.  She’s memorized almost the entire thing over the course of the last 3 days and she sings it to us before nap time and again before bed time (twice – once to each of us), as well as throughout the day.

Playing:  Memory.  She has a couple of card versions, as well as a wooden disc version, and she just can’t get enough.  The thing is that she’s good at it.  Really good.  (So good in fact that she dominated her Papa in a game last week.)

Talking about: Names.  She asks about everyone’s names right now – whether it be someone walking down the street, a fellow elevator passenger, the owner of a cafe we regularly frequent, or an artist we hear on the radio.  She regularly announces her entire name (both middle names and her giant last name) and asks strangers their names too.

Reading:  She’s absolutely loving ‘A Hole is to Dig’ by Ruth Krauss (© 1952) right now.  The “Mud is to jump in and slide in and yell dodleedoodleedoo” page is the funniest thing ever.

Eating:  Every single time I’ve asked her what she’s wanted for lunch or dinner for the last month, the answer has been a immediate and purposeful “Tofu.”.  Besides that, she’s gobbling up apples and giant carrots like there’s no tomorrow and has started a new morning routine… Instead of just having a cup of milk during our morning cuddle in Mama and Papa’s bed, she also wants a little bowl of apple slices or a big peeled carrot to naw on while we read books and watch music videos.  Oh – and her new favourite snack? Cucumber slices on crackers.

Danielle from Sometimes Sweet, a blog I’ve followed for a very long time now, does regular “Currently” posts and I’ve always enjoyed them, so I decided to borrow the idea and tweak it just a bit in order to suit a toddler. ☺

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The Rundown: 23 Months

Goodness gracious.  Our little lady is officially just one month from her SECOND birthday.  I don’t know how that’s even possible.  All I know is that time is flying faster than ever and no matter how hard I try, there’s no slowing it down.  

Here’s what our little lady was up to from 22 to 23 months…

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Gracen loves:

  • Being outside
  • Stickers (this is actually becoming a semi-problematic obsession)
  • Going on bike rides
  • Cooking with Mama
  • Visiting our mail lady (mostly because she gives her stickers)
  • Bella, Grandma Charlotte and Poppop’s dog
  • Being with her cousins and Baby Tate (she talks about all of them constantly)
  • Watching music videos on Papa’s iPad
  • Listening to She’ll be Coming ‘Round the Mountain in the car (repeatedly)
  • Eating goodies picked straight from the garden
  • Being in water (she’s a brave little thing)
  • Doing things on her own (“Grae Grae does it” is said multiple times a day)
  • Helping with household tasks (especially putting away groceries and laundry)
  • Being naked (this is new – perhaps heat driven?)
  • Books and reading (this is what you’ll find her doing during her independent play times more often than not)
  • Doing puzzles (and she’s good at them too!)
  • Beading
  • Looking at her own blog (she regularly says “See blog?” as soon as she wakes from her nap)
  • Popsicles
  • Going to the library to pick new books
  • Streaking after her bath (she does laps around the house)
  • Playing games (anything matching or colour based especially)
  • Music (listening to it, watching it, and making it)
  • Building and playing in forts
  • Trying new/sensory activities and games
  • Animals

She dislikes:

  • Anyone singing along to songs she’s listening to (you’ll be reminded once nicely with a “no sank you singing, Mama” and then it turns into a “No, no, nooooo singing, Mama”
  • When you do things for her (Miss Independent!)

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She thinks it’s hilarious when:

  • Papa sings ‘the towel song’ (You’ll have to ask Brad to show you how it goes)
  • You throw things in the air and let them drop to the floor
  • Papa does crazy dances
  • You hang her upside down

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Grae’s new foods include:

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After last month’s giant list of new words, I told myself I would no longer keep track, and thank goodness I did.  It would have been impossible.  From “breakable” to “pussy willow” to “octopus” to “library” and “rocking chair”, Gracen pretty much says everything now.  She uses little sentences all day long and she’s constantly surprising us with the new words she busts out in conversation.

One thing she really loves doing is giving play-by-plays while we’re on bike rides.  Riding on a bicycle with Grae sounds something like this: “Biking fun, Mama. Fun, fun, fun. See orange-y car! Haha – orangey car funny!  Ohhh… Biiiiiig flag. Big red white flag.  Clothes! Clean clothes hang-ing. See, Mama? See clothes hanging? People! People walking. Hiiiiiiiiii, people!  Hiiiiiii!  Ball!  Soccer ball!  Man plays ball.  Biking fun. Grae Grae – pink seat. Mama – black seat. Aqua bike. Biking fuuuuuuuun!” And it goes on and on and on. Certainly keeps me on my toes.

I can’t explain how great it is to be able to communicate with Grae and have her be able to express herself as well as she can.  We chat all day long day and I truly cherish the conversations we have {as crazy and repetitive as they sometimes are}.

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  • Now announces that she has to go to the bathroom, runs there, gets herself up onto the potty, and does her business (she even attempts to wipe if you let her)
  • Now counts up to 4 and loves having someone ask her how many objects she has (she counts them up and very proudly announces the number)
  • Names and points out all of her colours (including basic rainbow colours and more complicated ones like white, black, grey, brown, baby blue, silver, and aqua)
  • Sings Old MacDonald had a Farm
  • Can now open doors on her own
  • Is now much more comfortable around dogs and loves hugging and hanging on GC’s dog, Bella
  • Immediately gives you a hug and a kiss if she thinks you’re sad, then asks “Mama/Papa happy?”
  • Is a total fish and fearlessly bobs around in water that comes up past her chin – she even insists on us not catching her when she goes down the pool slide, which means she goes completely under water before we scoop her up
  • Can do proper, both-feet-off-the-ground jumps
  • Can answer basic questions like, “What is your name?”, “How old are you?”, “Who do you love?”, “What colour is our/Grandma’s/Uncle Brett’s car?”, “Where does Papa work?”, and “Who do you love?”
  • Now “reads” aloud simple books that focus on one or two colours/objects per page

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Funny / Cute things she’s been up to lately:

  • She loves eating raw onions and herbs while Mama is cooking and begs for more
  • We now wake up to a little sing-songy “Mama, Mamaaaa! Morning! No more sleeping!”
  • Sings herself to sleep at night… Turn the monitor on and you’ll hear pieces of Twinkle Twinkle, Old MacDonald, Head and Shoulders Knees and Toes, and other favourites
  • Sometimes she giggles so hard that she snorts, which makes her giggle more

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Well, that’s been our month…  I can’t believe how in love I am with this little lady.  She is truly such a smart, kind, and special little girl.  I know I say this every month, but this stage is so much fun and our days together just seem to be getting better and better.  Now to wrap my head around the fact that I’ll soon be a mama of a two year old little girl….  Ugh.

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The Rundown: 22 Months

Well, our little lady is officially 22 months old…  Just 2 months from her 2nd birthday – yikes. So hard to get my head wrapped around the fact that I will soon have a 2 year old little girl. And she’s definitely becoming a little girl.  She’s communicating more than ever, expressing her preferences more than ever, and becoming more independent than ever.

Here’s what she was up to from 21 to 22 months…

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Gracen loves:

  • Being outdoors
  • Being around other kids
  • Visiting the playground
  • Going down fast slides
  • Baking and cooking with Mama
  • Watching butterflies flitter around
  • Running laps around the house (one night this month she did 15 laps in a row)
  • Jumping, dancing, and spinning
  • Splashing in puddles
  • Helping with laundry
  • Riding the bus and sky train
  • Action songs
  • Tickling people
  • Giving ‘run hugs’
  • Watching Cullen’s ABC’s Youtube channel
  • Exploring new places
  • Drawing and colouring
  • Trying new games and activities
  • Having her nails painted (much to her Papa’s dismay)

She dislikes:

  • When she wants to go somewhere and you stop her from doing so
  • Having her bellybutton being covered by her nighttime diaper
  • Mama or Papa singing along with Cullen’s ABC’s songs

She thinks it’s hilarious when:

  • You spritz her with a spray bottle
  • You make silly noises
  • You chase her

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Grae’s new foods include:

  • Bean sprouts
  • Hima melon
  • Unsweetened chocolate almond milk
  • Homemade kale chips

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The new words/phrases she regularly uses include:

  • “lid”
  • “Milk please, Mama”
  • “peel”
  • “towel”
  • “Mommy” (so weird to be called that instead of ‘Mama’)
  • “new”
  • “doot” – do it
  • “good girl!”
  • “yellow”
  • “real”
  • “pop!”
  • “dump”
  • “drop”
  • “step”
  • “sleep”
  • “more muwah” (more kisses)
  • “wheel”
  • “mail”
  • “email”
  • “mirror”
  • “come”
  • “good job!”
  • “our car grey!” (our car is grey)
  • “uncle car red” (uncle’s car is red)
  • “stop”
  • “swing”
  • “sit”
  • “ice”
  • “apple sauce”
  • “apricot”
  • “feta”
  • “back”
  • “almond butter”
  • “high”
  • “higher”
  • “pick”
  • “idea”
  • “way”
  • “sock”
  • “wait”
  • “zoo”
  • “read”
  • “tail”
  • “beach”
  • “onesie”
  • “chicken”
  • “Apple store”
  • “mall”
  • “brella” (umbrella)
  • “stick”
  • “panties”
  • “hide-seek” (hide-and-seek)
  • “tickle tickle”
  • “whale”
  • “toot toot”
  • “roll”
  • “animal”
  • “come”
  • “money”
  • “red”
  • “arm”
  • “see”
  • “shoe”
  • “tea top” (tea pot)
  • “jamjams” (pajamas)
  • “black”
  • “fun”
  • “do”
  • “sweep”
  • “button”
  • “eyebrow”
  • “tock tick” (clock sound)
  • “truck”
  • “clean”
  • “school”
  • “pile”
  • “sun”
  • “train”
  • “snap”
  • “barn”
  • “egg”
  • “bead”
  • “pear”
  • “uncle” (yay! finally!)
  • “big”
  • “sock”
  • “Elmo”
  • “oopsie daiso!” (oopsie daisy!)
  • “tag”
  • “sticker”
  • “braid”

The new signs she’s using regularly include:

  • wait
  • wag
  • wheel

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  • Discovered shadows and loves making her shadow wave
  • Now points out A’s and O’s (as well as G’s)
  • Can now climb up the rock climbing wall on playgrounds
  • Now repeats almost anything you ask her to say
  • Is now pretty good at stopping and coming back when you ask her to do so (even when she’s desperately on a mission to go somewhere)
  • Automatically picks out a diaper, onesie, and pajamas on her own after bath time
  • Happily sits while her nails are cut (this hasn’t always been the case)
  • She doesn’t mind getting dirty, but likes to be cleaned as soon as she’s done with messy activites
  • Describes things by colour everywhere we go (“blue car!”, “red shoe!”, “yellow duck!”, “green tree!”)
  • Enjoyed potatoes for the first time EVER (baked on the BBQ)
  • Is still fairly easy to reason with (as long as you explain why she can’t have something / do something, she is normally pretty accepting of the situation)
  • Now does the actions to many songs (The Wheels on the Bus, Baby Bumble Bee, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, If You’re Happy and You Know It, The Hokey Pokey, and The Itsy Bitsy Spider are some of her favourites)
  • Can now point out and name almost all body parts
  • Continues to be extremely kind – she happily shares, greets little playmates with an enthusiastic “hiiii!”, and becomes incredibly concerned if someone is sad, hurt, or upset.

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Funny / Cute things she’s been up to lately:

  • If we’re headed on the door and we haven’t yet put a hat on her, she reminds us that a hat is needed to go outside
  • She now signs wait Kuwaiti style – love it
  • She begs for raw red onion while Mama cooks and takes handful after handful, announces “Purple onion!” and then shoves them into her little mouth – weirdo
  • She calls Smart cars and VW Beetles “baby cars”
  • “Happy” is the opposite of all things bad (so if food is not hot – it’s happy, if something is not dirty – it’s happy, if a body part does not hurt – it’s happy)
  • Every time you mention going outside, Grae immediately exclaims, “Haaaaat! Flap flips!”

Well, that was our month.  I can’t believe that our little lady will soon be two years old.  Must get my head wrapped around that in the next couple of months…

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The Rundown: 20 Months

Welp, our little lady turned 21 months old today, and apparently that’s just the motivation I needed to get my tush in gear and get her 20 month post done.  Darn time.  It’s not always my friend.  My goal is to have her 21 month one done sometime this week, and my even bigger goal is to have her first year photo book completed by her second birthday. Wish me luck.

Anyways, that’s enough about me.  Here’s what our darling little girl was up to between 19 and 20 months…

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Gracen loves:

  • Digging in the dirt and finding worms
  • Being dragged around the house while laying on a blanket (still)
  • Stickers and stamps
  • Balloons
  • Reading while on the toilet
  • Her hoola hoop
  • Jumping on beds
  • Discussing the day’s highlights before bedtime
  • Visiting her blog and having you tell her about the photos
  • Snuggling
  • Helping others
  • Sharing her things
  • Going on adventures
  • Reading
  • Having someone ask her questions so that she can show what she knows
  • Helping with jobs around the house
  • Putting her laundry away

She dislikes:

  • When you don’t let her try something on her own first before helping

She thinks it’s hilarious when:

  • You throw grapes up in the air and catch them in your mouth

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Grae’s new foods include:

  • No-sugar-added vacuum-fried banana chips
  • All-natural blueberry bran muffins
  • Arugula
  • Turkey bacon (not a regular food, but she did get to try it during a special celebratory dinner)
  • Wholewheat tortilla chip (not a regular food, but she did get to try one during Papa’s 30th birthday dinner)

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The new words she regularly uses include:

  • “snap”
  • “wow”
  • “ya”
  • “dirt”
  • “baaaaa” (sheep sound)
  • “sssssss” (snake sound)
  • “ohhhh”
  • “quack”
  • “car”
  • “meow”
  • “treat”
  • “play”
  • “bird”
  • “Tate”
  • “poop”
  • “deer”
  • “meow”
  • “meh” (goat sound)
  • “cheep cheep”
  • “train”
  • “out”
  • “step”
  • “peepee”
  • “apple” – happy (strangest thing ever)
  • “rararararah” – read
  • “knee”
  • “dot”
  • “yay!”
  • “tape”
  • “ring”
  • “carrot”
  • “pocket”
  • “all-mo” – almond
  • “edmama” – edamame
  • “poop”
  • “milp” – milk
  • “cut”
  • “glue”
  • “flap flip” – flip flop
  • “hat”
  • “papta” – pasta
  • “melon”
  • “watermelon”
  • “Ornia” – California
  • “plap” – splash
  • “hole”
  • “flap”
  • “touch”
  • “oh dear!”
  • “cloth”
  • “babe”
  • “home”
  • “clothes”
  • “bra” (don’t ask)
  • “pay”
  • “hand”
  • “top”
  • “two”
  • “Lulu” (her nickname)
  • “draw”
  • “arm”
  • “dab”
  • “tight”
  • “down”
  • “door”
  • “tights”
  • “oh, Grae Grae!”
  • “oh, baby!”
  • “pull”
  • “please”
  • “chair”
  • “auntie”
  • “Quatchi”
  • “me”
  • “rawr!!!” (when asked what dinosaurs, lions, and tigers say)

IMG 1371The new signs she’s using regularly include:

  • Snake
  • Cereal
  • Want
  • Basketball
  • Family
  • Come here
  • Alligator

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Right now, she:

  • Makes a chomping noise whenever she sees alligators and crocodiles
  • Points out dots whenever she sees them
  • Talks about her little friend, Tate, all the time
  • Lays all of her animals and dolls on their bellies for story times
  • Puts animals on the toilet and pretends they’re peeing
  • Does a crazy mad face where she holds her fists up in the air and shakes (but not when she’s mad – just randomly)
  • Announces she has to use the potty, runs to grab a book, and then heads to the bathroom
  • Helps EVERYTHING (almonds, books, babies, shoes, etc.) pee, drink, and sleep – weird girl
  • Leads you by the finger to wherever she needs help or wants to show you something
  • Walks up and down stairs without a railing or hand to hold on to
  • Is putting words together in simple phrases more and more (for example, I told her that we weren’t going to be seeing her friend Tate because his mom wasn’t feeling well, and for days she’d say, “Tate Mama Owah?”)
  • Is very into the emotions of story book characters
  • Puts away her own laundry {in the proper places}
  • Believes that everything can be fixed with tape (because that’s how I fix her ripped books)
  • Wants to do everything herself (Miss Independent!)

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Funny / Cute things she’s been up to lately:

  • While shopping in the States this month, I announced that our blender was crap.  Well guess what my little parrot took from that?  “CRAP!”
  • If you ask her what her cousin Kinslee says, she’ll reply “Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeh!” in her loudest, screechiest voice
  • She constantly points to my {naturally dark} joints and says, “Owah.  Mama owah.”
  • When she comes across a group of items, whether it be food on a plate, rocks in the garden, or poop in the toilet, she points to them and calls them “mamas”, “papas”, and “bubbas”, based on their size
  • Pretends she’s a baby and crawls around the house
  • When you ask her where her Apple onesie came from, she’ll respond with “Ornia” (it was bought at Apple Headquarters in Cupertino, California)

Well, that was our month.  This little lady’s language is exploding and it’s becoming nearly impossible to keep up with her new words.  She’s developing such a great little sense of humour and seriously keeps me laughing all day long.  But more than anything, she’s got the BIGGEST heart.  She wants nothing more than to make others happy.  She’s kind to kids on the playground who aren’t so kind to her, she’s happy to share even the most special of treats, she shows genuine concern for others’  feelings, and she doles out hugs generously when they’re needed.  I’m so proud of her that it’s sometimes a little overwhelming.  She’s certainly a special little girl.

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19 Months

Today our baby girl turned 19 months old.  Yeesh.  I feel like we just celebrated her half birthday last week.  Why do the days have to pass by so quickly?

Here’s what our little Lulu has been up to this month…

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Gracen loves:

  • Going to story time sessions at our local libraries (she visits with the other babies, dances during the songs, and does the actions to the poems)
  • Cooking and baking with Mama (the instant you mention it, she runs to the kitchen and retrieves her little vintage apron)
  • Hiding things and having you find them (typically she hides them right in front of you, so it’s not an overly difficult game)
  • Cottage cheese, avocado, peanut butter and cooked carrots
  • Being outside (no matter how cold or rainy it is)
  • Wrapping herself in a blanket and rolling around in it
  • All animals
  • Looking for dogs while we drive in the car (which leads to some ridiculously slow driving and rolling our windows up and down a lot)
  • Having ice cubes in her water
  • Sweeping, helping with laundry, and “doing” the dishes
  • Teeny tiny babies (especially her wee friend, Tate)
  • “Talking” on the phone
  • Mothergooseclub.com (we’re pretty much done with the TV thing that started during her last bout of teething, but this is becoming its replacement… The teacher in me thinks, ‘at least it’s all nursery rhymes!’)
  • Having pretend tea parties
  • Likes “playing” Angry Birds on the iPhone (ugh…talk to her Papa about this one!)
  • Having her toe nails painted (like LOVES it so desperately that she signs ‘please! please! please!’ while smashing the nail polish bottle on her little toes)

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She dislikes:

  • Having food stuck in her teeth
  • Having fuzz in her mouth
  • Laying on Mama’s shoulder if my hair has not been properly cleared away first

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She thinks it’s hilarious when:

  • You get really silly and roll around or “wrestle” with her
  • You slowly creep towards her while saying, “I’m gonna get you…”

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Grae’s new foods include:

  • Spinach smoothies of all sorts
  • Biscotti
  • French crepes
  • Pine nuts
  • Tomato salsa

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The new words she regularly uses include:

  • “pool”
  • “hop”
  • “uh oh oh ohhh”
  • “shhhhhhh”
  • “tea”
  • “straw”
  • “run, run, run”
  • “rain, rain, rain”
  • “more”
  • “nin” (in)
  • “turtle”
  • “clip”
  • “bubble”
  • “beep”
  • “Grae Grae”
  • “mane”
  • “knee”
  • “bedroom”
  • “barrette”

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The new signs she’s using regularly include:

  • Happy
  • Umbrella
  • Rock
  • Around

IMG 8852Right now, she:

  • Talks about her “manmaws” constantly
  • Sleeps with a pillow (stolen straight from Mama’s side of the bed)
  • Isn’t afraid to wander off on her own (and therefore we have to keep a really close eye on her)
  • Gives THE BEST out-of-the-blue leg hugs
  • Often gives herself an enthusiastic applause after a job well done
  • Pats Mama’s chest and declares “Mama!” very matter of factly when a stranger says ‘hello’ and she’s feeling shy
  • Says “uh oh oh” if she sees any sort of mess on the floor
  • Rushes to get cloths to wipe up real and imaginary spills/messes while saying, “uh oh oh…”
  • Can retrieve books from her shelf or bin by title
  • Is rapidly expanding her dance move repertoire
  • Is really getting into imaginary play (like sipping on pretend tea, having her dolls go potty, and pretending to be sad)
  • Can point out her chin, cheeks, neck, tongue, teeth, shoulders, bottom, and knees (in addition to the basic body parts she knew previously)
  • Is really into collecting (rocks, seashells, pinecones – you name it!)
  • Can do the actions to several of her favourite nursery rhymes and songs (like Where is Thumbkin?, Zoom Zoom, Zoom, and Peel Banana)
  • Enjoys walking backwards
  • Can put on her hats, underwear, pants, mittens, and gumboots by herself
  • Sometimes tells you that she wants to go to sleep in the middle of lunch or dinner
  • Can climb into her highchair on her own
  • Can do the buckles on her high chair and car seat
  • Immediately says “OW-AH!” every time she sees a knife or a pair of scissors and gets very worried if she sees you washing knives
  • Uses signs (and words) to tell you about places you mention (for example, if I say, Grae, do you want to go to the beach, she’ll sign/say ‘rock’, ‘birdie’, “pup pup”, “drink” because we always collect rocks, see birds and dogs, and stop at Starbucks for hot drinks while visiting the beach)
  • Gives proper kisses, complete with the ‘muwah!’ sound
  • Is very brave at playgrounds (she’ll climb up and slide down anything!)
  • Starting to use words in pairs (like “buh-bye Papa” and “no, no, Grae Grae”)
  • Refers to herself as “Grae Grae” more than “Bubba”, like she used to
  • Holds her pointer finger up to her mouth and says “shhh shhh shhhhh” if someone nearby is sleeping
  • She is very kind to her peers (and wants to hug, kiss, and share with other toddlers at our play groups)
  • Puts her shoes and hat away in the closet each time we come home

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Funny / Cute things she’s been up to lately:

  • If you ask her to do something, like give you a kiss, and she doesn’t do it, she’ll ask you if you’re sad using her sad/cry sign…  When you respond that you are in fact sad, she’ll immediately do what she was asked to do and give a big smile while signing ‘happy’
  • She’s now got a crazy silly “smile!” face that she pulls out when you’re taking her photo
  • After framing and hanging her first real finger painting, she now wants to hang all of her artwork on her bedroom walls
  • If we’re out in public and she hears or sees a baby crying or whining, she imitates the baby’s sounds and you can just tell that she’s feeling sympathetic
  • When she has to use the potty, she announces, “Poo poo!” (whether it’s number one or two) and then shouts, “Run, run, run!” as she hurries to the bathroom
  • Many times, she’ll announce, “Poo poo!”, stop to grab a favourite book, and then run to the toilet with her reading material
  • She likes to keep her pockets filled with “rarahs” (nuts) at all times
  • Before bedtime, she kisses her dolls, adjusts their blanket, and gives their cradle a rock
  • She is very affectionate and wants to kiss everything she likes (yes, including rocks)
  • She lip syncs to her favourite songs very passionately (eyes closed/squinty, body swaying, head bobbing – it’s hilarious!)

IMG 8875The basics:

  • Stats – Not too much new as we just had her 18 month wellness check up and won’t have another for a while, except for the fact that I measured her (twice – both standing and laying) out of curiosity after she jumped from the 95th percentile down to the 45th percentile for her height between her last two wellness appointments.  Turns out she’s actually 84 centimetres (rather than 80), which puts her at the 85th percentile mark.
  • Teeth – Still 16 (thank goodness – we’re enjoying the teething break!)
  • Eating – She continues to be a great little eater, but has definitely begun to show preferences for certain things at certain times.  Even though she loves Thai curry, it might not be what she wants for dinner the night that I’ve cooked it.  We try really hard to not make a big deal of these situations because we know she’ll eat when she’s hungry, and she almost always ends up eating some or all of it.  Things that she will never turn away are: tofu, cooked carrots, nuts, seeds, cottage cheese,  blueberries, edamame beans, yogurt, anything with peanut butter or almond butter, miso soup, and watermelon.
  • Drinking – As of now, she continues to drink only water and whole organic milk.  She has about 1/2 to 3/4 of a cup of milk with breakfast, after her nap, and with dinner, and drinks water the rest of the time (unless we’re on a special outing and she gets a mini steamed milk when Mama gets a coffee).  She does have homemade smoothies for snacks sometimes, but they’re made with milk and naturally-sweet fruit only.
  • Sleeping – *Knock on wood*, but we continue to have a fantastic little sleeper on our hands.  She goes to bed at 6:30 p.m. and sleeps through the night until about 6:30 a.m. (sometimes 7:00 if we’re really lucky).  She has one midday nap around noon, and generally sleeps for 2 hours, but it can vary between 1.5 and 2.5 hours.  She is definitely a routine little girl, and she does best if she stays on that routine.  Having a short nap or going to bed too late can cause an early morning, which is why we almost never stray from her schedule.  Although we have always made our very best effort to have her sleep at home in her crib for nap times and bedtimes, a few months ago we started being able to transfer her from her car seat to her crib if she had accidentally fallen asleep on the way home. We try not to be in the car driving right before nap time, but it’s nice to know that her nap won’t be ruined if she does fall asleep in the car.
  • Potty training – We’re pretty much back to business as usual in the potty department!  When Grae and I got really sick at the end of January / beginning of February, we had Gracen in a diaper full-time for a week as she was spending most of her days sleeping.  Of course, wearing a diaper after going 3 months without, caused a little bit of backtracking, but we’re back to no diapers at home and on short outings.  I have been putting one on her for long outings (like a 10 km seawall walk or a day at Granville Island), but she’s been keeping those dry too.  Looks like Mama has to man up, be brave, and let them go again.
    IMG 8889Well, that’s been Miss G’s month.  Like always, our little lady is a constant source of humour and joy and time seems to fly by faster than it did the month before.  I’m excited for what next month will bring…  I know that very soon she’ll be learning so quickly that I will no longer be able to keep track of all of this stuff, but hey – I’m up for the challenge!  Here’s to another wonderful month with our Little Lulu.  ♥
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Happy Half Birthday, Grae!

My baby girl turned 18 months old today.  Officially one and a half.  As in… Tomorrow she’ll be closer to two years old than to one.  Goodness gracious…

One thing I’ve noticed since becoming a mommy is that I now have an overwhelming urge to create traditions, make the holidays more special than ever, and create memories that our little lady will keep with her always.  So today, we continued a little tradition we started last year.  We celebrated Gracen’s half birthday. Nothing fancy.  Just a day focused on Grae with a few special little things mixed in here and there.

Our day included a trip to Science World with friends, a Mama and munchkin date for hot drinks, picking up helium balloons on a whim, and a “cupcake” (a healthy banana nut muffin topped with fresh whipped cream) with a candle after dinner.

Here’s what our little lady has been up to this month…

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Gracen loves:

  • Having dance parties in her crib
  • Wearing sunglasses (and actually keeps them on!)
  • All animals (she often chooses to read non-fiction animal books over story books)
  • Having painted toes (although Papa’s put the kibosh on that)
  • Playing hide-and-seek
  • Splashing in puddles
  • The “Papa Song”, a.k.a. ‘Howling for You’ by The Black Keys (and requests it multiple times a day)
  • Doing jobs (she actively seeks them out and sticks with them until they’re done)
  • Greek food (tzatziki especially)
  • The colour purple (she points out purple things everywhere we go and is in LOVE with her purple shoes, purple crayons, and purple clothes)
  • Cooking and baking

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She doesn’t like:

  • Having things taken away from her if she’s enjoying them
  • Potatoes (still)

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She thinks it’s hilarious when:

  • She’s laying on the floor and you lightly put your foot on her belly and wiggle it around
  • She sits on your belly and bounces up and down
  • She grasps on to the back of your shirt and follows you around like a little shadow

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Grae’s new foods include:

  • Mexican lasagna
  • Fruit salsa
  • Quiche
  • Mustard
  • Larabars
  • Stovetop-popped popcorn
  • Mango popsicle (not that it’s a new food that she regularly eats, but she did get one when she was getting over last month’s sickness and had a dry cough and sore throat)
  • Also, my brother and sister-in-law will be very pleased to know that although Grae doesn’t get junk food (and won’t for a while!), she has had honey, pure maple syrup, and organic cane sugar (in tiny amounts) when they’ve been baked into things like homemade muffins or granola

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The new words she regularly uses include:

  • “star”
  • “bedroom”
  • “dot”
  • “peep” (like a chick)
  • “blue”
  • “heart”
  • “bump!”
  • “G”
  • “Chay Chay” (her cousin’s name is Chayton and we often call him Chay or Chay Chay)
  • “straw”

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The new signs she’s using regularly include:

  • Cry / sad
  • Hurt
  • Water

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She now:

  • Mimics the emotions she sees characters displaying in books
  • Is very into shapes and can consistently point out circles, hearts, and stars
  • Can point out most basic colours
  • Points and calls out “purple!” and “blue!” when she sees objects of those colours
  • Has an amazing memory (sometimes I truly cannot believe the things she remembers)
  • Is great with locations and directions and can find her way to favourite places in stores we visit regularly (like to the fish tanks in the back corner of Superstore)
  • Points out the capital letter ‘G’ in books and in the environment (she finds them on posters tacked on power poles, on store signs, and in newspaper headlines)
  • Is great at cleaning up and has no issue with tidying one thing before you help her get something else out
  • Helps with laundry and is totally insulted if you try to do it without her
  • Remembers who bought things for her and regularly pats the items while announcing the name of the person who purchased them for her (we always hear about “manmaw” {Sue} when she puts on her raincoat, “manmaw” {Charlotte} when she wears her cream sweater, and Papa when she sits in her carseat)
  • Has 16 teeth! (all 8 front ones, four molars, and four canines)
  • Walks upright up and down stairs when she has a hand or railing for support
  • Does a funny gallop / skip sort of walk
  • Is experimenting with jumping

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Funny / Cute things she’s been up to lately:

  • I’ve walked into her room twice recently and found her “nursing” her baby (just picture this – Grae sitting in her reading corner with her shirt off,  her baby in cradle position near her chest, while making suckling noises… too cute!)
  • She dances in the car pretty much the entire time she’s in there
  • Regularly requests ‘Chay Chay videos’ (videos of her cousins) by saying ‘Chay Chay’ while holding my phone in one hand and putting her other palm up to the sky
  • She requests the “Papa song” (Jennifer Gasoi’s ‘Monsieur Glouton’) and “Mama song” (Jennifer Gasoi’s ‘The Pizza Man’) over and over again while in the car
  • She says “nomanomaneigh” if she accidentally bites you (she can get a little aggressive while giving kisses)

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Big things that have happened this month:

  • She spent her first day away from Mama / spent her first full day with Papa
  • She met her new little friend, Baby Tate when he was less than 24 hours old

IMG 6435Well, another month and what feels like a hundred new little things learned by our doodlebug…  Before we know it, it will be time to start planning her second birthday party.  (Okay, who am I kidding?  I’ve already given it some serious thought.)

If you want to see the difference 12 short months makes, you can see her last half birthday update here.

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17 Months Old

This post is late. BEYOND late.  So late in fact, that Gracen will be 18 months old in just 2 days.  But we were so sick when she turned 17 months that staying awake was nearly impossible…  Let alone posting a monthly update.  So here it is, short and sweet with one lousy picture of my very sick {at the time} little doodle.

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Gracen loves:

  • Pillows (still)
  • Taking care of her babies (they get regular cuddles, kisses, and pats on the back, as well as snack and book deliveries)
  • Colouring in her colouring books
  • Drawing on her chalkboard
  • Moving objects from one place to another, and then moving them back again
  • Books (she carries them with her absolutely everywhere)
  • Hanging out in Mama and Papa’s bed (she dives into the pillows and then buries herself in the duvet)
  • Unwrapping presents
  • Milk
  • Raisins (so much so that she’s been known to try and sneak them out of the cupboard)
  • Doing puzzles
  • All animals


She thinks it’s hilarious when:

  • You hide from her, jump out, and shout “Boo!”
  • She runs and hides from you


Grae’s new foods include:

  • Radishes
  • Stovetop-popped popcorn
  • All kinds of Mexican foods
  • Pretzel crackers (we were on a 9 hour drive to the Okanagan in terrible weather and were desperate)
  • We also tried juicing an orange for her while she was sick, but she’d have absolutely nothing to do with orange juice


The new words she regularly uses include:

  • “Table”
  • “Manpaw” – grandpa
  • “Cock-a-doodle-doo”
  • “Bzzzzzz” (bee sound)
  • “Gido”
  • “Mango”


The new signs she’s using regularly include:

  • Frog
  • Puppy
  • Rabbit
  • Butterfly


She now:

  • Has a new big girl car seat (still rear facing)
  • Answers ‘yes’ and ‘no’ appropriately to almost all questions
  • Has 14 teeth (8 in the front, 4 molars, and 2 canines on top)
  • Is starting to walk up and down stairs upright


Funny / Cute things she’s been up to lately:

  • She is still ridiculously kissy and loves on you all day long
  • She instructs you on where to blow bubbles on her body and then giggles like mad when you do
  • No matter what’s going on or what’s she’s up to, if she sees the TV remotes somewhere, she immediately stops what she’s doing, retrieves them, and delivers them to her Papa
  • When taking a crayon from her jar or a cracker from the box, she stops, holds up one finger, and then carefully selects just one item
  • She loves doing jobs around the house and actively seeks them out


January was a bit of a crazy month for us…  Between traveling home to the Okanagan for a week, our ‘Christmas in January’ celebration, another round of teething, and the sickness that hit our house just recently, things have been a little chaotic.  Here’s to a low-key February!



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