It’s hard to fathom that only two years ago we were anxiously awaiting the arrival of our first child, and here we are basking in the glow of our two daughters. Darwin turned 22 months old on the 10th, six days after becoming a big sister. Currently, she is as likely to say that I’m at the hospital as to say I’m at work whenever she talks about me and I’m not around. That has become a big part of her narrative, for better or worse, over the last couple of weeks.
Having two under two is…awesome. Y’all, this could change at a moments notice, but for now, it’s just awesome. No, we’re not really sleeping much (me more than Leah, this time around), our house is a mess (except when our doula is there for a few hours), the dog hasn’t been walked in probably five days (but seems mostly okay with that for the first time ever), and we’re sorely unprepared for our trip to Maine in 5 weeks. But life is good.
Ten things about life with Darwin at 22 months:
- So. Many. Stories. We now understand more than we don’t, and Darwin will ramble on and on about her day now. Her favorite story to tell goes like this: “N bite Darwin a long time ago. J bite Darwin a long time ago. B bite Darwin a long time ago. Grandma bite Darwin a long time ago…” and on and on, until finally she just starts grinning, then laughing outright. Over the Rainbow, skies are pink. Belly laughter. An almost-two-year-old telling jokes has got to be the delight of my day right now.
- Singing. When Darwin isn’t talking, she’s singing. She sings nursery rhymes, all the songs we’ve sung to her over and over. She sings about her friends. She sings about the dog. And apparently her little friend N also sings about her and us. My heart is full.
- Sandboxes are THE BEST THING IN THE WORLD. If we could replace our living room with a sandbox, we would have hours free from parenting every day. At least until the baby learns to crawl.
- Crackers, beans, cheese, and watermelon. These are currently Darwin’s four food groups. We continue to offer a wide variety, and hope that one day she will eat more than a taste. She ate a carrot the other day and I had to restrain myself from actually doing a dance, as I’m sure that would ensure that she never, ever did it again.
- Sleep comes and goes. Last night she was up at least 6 or 7 times to nurse. Most nights it’s down to about twice, which is entirely within my comfort zone. This kid is a milk monster, and it’s why I don’t actually worry too much about her nutritive intake.
- Outside is still a favorite, so we’re doing something right. Darwin loves to walk, dig in the dirt, and water the garden. She picks berries (the strawberries that my dad and I planted when I was pregnant for exactly this purpose), moves dirt from here to there, and begs to play in the wading pool at all hours.
- Bubble baths became a thing because I’m a sucker and I tried out the Honest Company. I worry for the day we run out of bubbles. I do have to tell her that the bubbles are not for eating. Have I mentioned that this kid is a sensory-seeker? Seriously. Bubbles. Yuck.
- Snuggles. The snuggles have become just lovely. After we nurse at bedtime I can convince her to stop by saying we can have snuggles before she climbs into bed. Now she’ll snuggle up on my chest and tell me all about her day and the people she saw and played with, and then she’ll slide down onto her “big girl” bed (a crib mattress next to our bed), and conk out. Let me tell you, after the first week post-birth of Linnea, in which we had two three-hour bedtimes that involved many tears and much begging (on my part and hers), this new routine is THE BEST.
- The Woof-Woof. Our dog Scout is very sweet and great with kids. She follows us around any time we’re home, and began coming into the bedroom a few months ago when I would take Darwin in for bedtime. Now Darwin will demand that Scout come too, and will sob very quickly and dramatically if I forget and close the door before the woof-woof is present. I now dread the day even more, whenever it comes, that Scout is no longer with us.
- I’m so done with toddler diapers, but Darwin is unfortunately not. I was really hopeful that by keeping her in cloth, she would be ready to potty train early. While she’ll use the potty occasionally, and sit on it in order to read books for hours if we let her, more than ten minutes with her diaper off around the house and she’s left a puddle, much like a shameless puppy. A couple instances of stepping in pee-footprints cured me of any hope that she might be ready to potty train. Oh well.
- And one to grow on…Darwin spontaneously talks about Linnea, and will say that she loves her. It slays me. These girls. They are unspeakably amazing. How did we get so lucky? (Yes, clearly I’m looking to jinx us…I’ll be back in a few days with an update regarding colic and some painful sibling interaction I’m sure…)