We made some amazing memories this month, my little garlic girl! Holy, did we ever. With each passing day you become more and more fun. Your expressions… Your actions… Your words… I wish I could video you 24 hours straight because I want to remember every single funny thing you do. It is amazing to think that just a handful of months ago you started saying your first words, and now you are just a fountain of conversation. I think you know hundreds of words now, and you’ve also started using them to make little phrases and sentences. You refer to yourself as ‘Olla’ and I’ve caught myself calling you that too. You are starting to put words together to make little sentences like “where’d it go?” (you also add in the arm gestures too!), “all gone”, and “Olla eat”. It seems like over the Christmas break you just started blossoming with your vocabulary!
Your second Christmas has come and gone. I was so excited about this big day. I had your gifts planned months in advance. You didn’t grasp what Christmas was in its entirety, but you knew who Santa was and you definitely understood how to open your presents. We started the Christmas season with 2 parties on Dec. 21. The first was at Great Aunt Suzette’s and the second was the annual Arnold Christmas in Smiths Falls. Aunt Suzette and Aunt Kelly bought you the perfect gift. You were so excited about it, I thought it was going to hard to top! You are now the proud owner of your very own cleaning set – broom, mop, duster, hand broom and dust pan! You clean everything, even under the couches! It is amazing!
We spent Christmas Eve at Grandma and Grandpa Blair’s house. The whole extended family was there for our traditional wear-your-Santa-hat turkey dinner. It was delicious as always. Your Grandma always inspires me. She can whip up a Christmas meal for 30 without breaking a sweat. I don’t know how she does it! As the night progressed, and tummies became full we had to say goodbye to the crowd and head over to Elgin for Christmas Eve Mass. This Mass is probably my favourite part of Christmas. It takes me back to the years when I was just a little older than you. The excitement of Christmas could be felt throughout the entire church, but my favourite part was looking up to see my Grandma Murray directing the choir. She always gave me a little wave or a wink. I felt so special. On Christmas Eve, I can feel her there. I can hear her singing. Christmas Eve Mass is more than just a regular visit to our church, and I hope someday you will feel the same.
I could barely wait for you to wake up on Christmas morning, but of course you decided to sleep in until well after 8:00. I don’t think you have ever slept in past 7:00 in your entire life, and on the day I was hoping you would be up by 5, you decided to sleep in! Silly girl! You slid down the stairs on your bum, full of smiles, but not really knowing why Momma was excited. You ran into the living room to find boxes beautifully wrapped with lovely Christmas paper and one giant present, way taller than you, sitting under the window. You weren’t too sure what to do at first, but once we handed you your stocking from Santa, you ripped right in. It took some convincing from DaDa, but you finally opened your big present. A kitchen set from Santa! You just couldn’t believe it! You opened all drawers, the oven and the microwave, and looked back at us as if saying “THIS IS FOR ME?”. Santa knew exactly what you get you! Among some of the other presents you opened were some Melissa and Doug food, a Disney princess castle, and new baby (whose eyes open and close… amazing!).
When we finished at our house we headed down to the Blair’s where Auntie Jamie, Auntie Re-Re (Hilary) and Auntie Kara were eagerly waiting for you. More and more gifts piled up on your lap. You received some beautiful clothes and your very own set of snowshoes! We cannot wait to take you out on a hike – although the hike may just be around our yard until you figure out how to walk in them! Auntie Re-Re gave you a skirt that you insist on wearing everywhere we go!
Soon we were home for a nap and then off to Granny and Popa’s house for the remainder of the day. You were spoiled for the third time that day. Uncle Kenney and Candice added to your kitchen collection with your ice cream and cupcake sets. (I think the ice cream set is at the top of your list of favourite Christmas gifts!), and Granny and Popa gave you a pots and pans set and your very own Grocery Cart (which we take to Kudrinko’s Grocery Store every time we go)! You ended up having to take a long break in between opening all your gifts (including a meal break), but when you started back up you found tons of new clothes to add to your stylish wardrobe, including cowgirl boots!
I loved seeing Christmas through your eyes. You were so excited with every gift you opened. I could tell you were so grateful. You often added in little “Tank You’s” and kisses. You are just so sweet and thoughtful, even at 22 months old!
We are slowly introducing you to the potty. We’ve had one sitting in our kitchen for months but haven’t been that serious about it. I decided I would really start ramping up the training when I was home for 2 weeks over the holidays. You really love sitting the potty, reading books… but you don’t quite grasp the concept yet. We put the potty in the bathroom and suggested that you sit on it when we are in there using the bathroom too. We talk about going potty and how cool and awesome it is, and how fun it is to flush (you like waving and saying bye-bye). We got some special animal books that we ONLY read on the potty. Soon, you started sitting on it. You don’t mind sitting there for long periods of time, although you don’t quite understand what to do because as soon as I put your diaper back on, you pee-pee! Thats okay! We are working on it. I know you will get it soon. You are an incredibly smart girl!
Other notable things from this month:
You have a beautiful personality, Olive. You are blessed with an incredible amount of love by the people who surround you. We live in such an amazing community. Wherever we go, people stop to ask you how you are. You love playing with all your daycare friends, and can’t get enough of the rink. Your sweet grandparents are always here for you, when I need a break or whenever you miss them. You have every chance to become anything you want to be, and as you become more and more independent in these months full of milestones, I feel I am tested every day by the opportunity to let you go. Let you try. Let you stumble. Let you learn.
We love you to the moon and back, Olive!