Well well, miss El.
30 months. Exactly two and a half years old. I sort of can’t believe it. I’ve been organizing our photos lately and keep running across pictures of you as an infant. I’ll look up from my computer and watch you read your books and wonder how the time went so quickly, how on earth this tiny infant became a beautiful toddler who speaks in full sentences, throws her trash away, opens the refrigerator, looks out for her little sister, says her abc’s and counts to 17… How?
It’s been a journey of love. Sometimes anger and frustration too, but always love.
You have a cute pixie haircut that our friend Auntie K gave you, and it suits you well. All sassy and whatnot. I have hopes that it will grow back like Rapunzel’s. We took you to see Tangled, by the way, and you were so enthralled that you spent an hour afterward in your own little world. Silently beaming.
This half-year has solidified the princess obsession. One of your favorite toys is a piece of sparkly, sequenced purple fabric that you simply call, “princess.” Whenever you wear it you are a princess. Occasionally you like to make daddy and mommy princesses, as well as your little sis. She just sort of shrieks though. I’m not sure she’s ready for royalty. When we showed you the pretty Christmas dress that nonnie sent you, you gasped and said, “Cinderella!!!” And that’s why it was the easiest time we’ve had dressing you this year. You even know how to lift your skirt and twirl. Who taught you that?! I’m pretty sure it’s ingrained in who you are. An instinct to cock your head and daintily pick up both sides of your skirt and walk a little taller with heels high in the air. You are a natural princess, my dear.
Your imagination is inspiring. I never knew so many toys could become food items and babies, but you’ve managed to turn wood dolls into cake and pizza, zebra rattles into nursing babies, and nearly EVERYTHING is coffee. For Christmas, you received lots of fun food toys. Fitting, and sort of perfect for you.
We threw you and your friends a ‘Pinkalicious Party’ a few months ago. Just for the heck of it. We had pink donuts, pink lemonade, pink jello, pink goldfish crackers, pink fruit roll-ups, pink crayons, and pink tutus. Your friends Anuhea and Bella came to join you and Claire. It was Adorable. We read Pinkalicious, a book you have nearly memorized and constantly read to yourself, and watched the sugar highs and lows. You love anything pink.
You LOVE your sister. Knowing you had a nurturing instinct before Claire was born, I figured you’d do well with her – but I never knew how strong your love for her would be. If she is asleep, you want her awake. Lately you two have begun playing games together. She chases you on her tummy and you both laugh. You also like to instruct your mama how Claire needs to be mothered. “She’s tired.” “She’s hungry.” “Mom! Cware’s eating THAT!” We’re really grateful for the latter. Books have been spared and fewer choking episodes have occurred because of your mothering. At naptime and bedtime, you share a room – which is sometimes awful… but beautiful too. Usually several minutes of laughing and squealing go by before either of you fall asleep.
Some of our favorite Ellie sayings in the past six months:
“Baby, I want some MILK!” (for a while, you called everyone ‘baby’)
“I see the waba” (we went to the Big Island and watched the lava glow – now whenever she sees a sunset she calls it lava)
“Mommy lay with you!” (when she wants to be held or have me lay with her before bed, she refers to herself as ‘you’)
“Give me kiss.”
“Want Big Red Dog!” (the Clifford soundtrack gets played multiple times a day)
Other fun Ellieisms: Animals and objects are referred to as “mommy” and “baby.” In the airport Ellie pointed to ‘mommy airplanes’ and ‘baby airplanes.’ … For a while El took naps in our bed and everyday she’d ask to lay in ‘daddy’s bed’ (she laid on his side)… In the morning El comes into our room, strips the covers off me, and says, “want cheeeyos! Get up mommy! Can you get up please? MOMMY GET UP” … El prays before each meal and it’s so sweet, “Dear God. Thank you for this meal. Thank you for the bread. Thank you for the rice. Thank you for the pizza Thank you for uncle Patrick and Auntie Chrissy. Please bless people in the Philippines. We LOVE YOU GOD! Amen” (with variation of course) …
The two’s are in full force. Discipline has been a journey for you and for us. We’re still working through it, though you’re pretty responsive to time outs. Sometimes you put yourself in timeout. Other times you like to tell your babies or MOMMY to go to timeout, and you know what little one? Sometimes mommy needs a timeout. Sometimes I don’t treat you like I should. It’s really hard to admit that – but when mommy and daddy get angry we always ask for forgiveness. Our parents told us early on in parenting that asking for forgiveness is important, and we’ve needed to do it often. Your love and quick forgiveness ministers to our hearts. You are so eager to give us a hug when we say we are sorry and kiss us on the lips and then move right along. It’s humbling. Thank you for that.
And a final rundown of El facts… You like yogurt and woobies (smoothies), fruit snacks, milk, juice, rice pilaf, and chickens. You’ve transitioned into your toddler bed beautifully, though those early mornings come too quick sometimes. You sleep through Claire’s crying. Uncle Patrick and Auntie Chrissy and your other aunties are some of your favorite people. When I’m on the computer you like to ask for nonnie, pops, aubi, or grandad (because of skype). You are starting to have memories – like riding an elephant in CA and knowing that on Sundays we see “friends” at church and Wednesdays you go to Ty Ty’s house. … El, you thoroughly enjoy Elmo and Disney movies – though in December you watched Christmas movies like Rudolph, Charlie Brown, and the Grouch. Claire has some fun Dr. Seuss Christmas onesies with the Grinch on the front and you LOVED when she wore her ‘grouch’ shirt. You are still passionate about dancing and music, friends, and the zoo. At some point you’ll start using the potty. Some day. You are pretty opposed right now, though we occasionally have a success. Maybe in Oregon… 😉
We love you sweet one. Discovering your personality and what makes you tick has been a blast. Your middle name, Joy, is perfect for you. You are full of joy and sass and passion and independence and love.