Alma is now 22 months old! It’s hard to imagine she will be 2 years old in just two months. This was a tough year for us, parenting-wise, but it’s incredible how fast time seems to be flying.
Here’s what Alma’s been up to lately:
Starting at the end of August, I took a position as a part-time nanny for a toddler close in age to Alma. Alma and I spend our mornings at Z’s house, and that new routine has shifted Alma’s sleep schedule slightly. On the downside, she takes her afternoon nap a little later than her ideal time, but on the upside, it has pushed us into a more consistent schedule.
She generally wakes up between 6-6:30am, though there are the occasional before-6am wake-ups, and the even less occasional 7am or later wake-ups. Nap time happens from about 1/1:15-3:30pm. Sometimes she wakes up around 3pm, but more often than not, I wake her up at 3:30pm to ensure bedtime comes at a decent hour. She typically needs about 4.5-5 hours of wake time between nap and bedtime, which means that bedtime is anywhere from 8-8:30pm.
This schedule has been working out well for Alma, and she appears to be getting enough sleep overall (about 12 hours total). We did hit a rough patch last month with daylight savings time. Alma started waking up earlier and earlier – first 5am, then 4:30, then 4:15 over the course of about three weeks. Andrew and I tried everything we could to get her back to sleep, but nothing worked. Eventually, it just worked itself out, I guess, and now she is consistently waking around 6am each morning.
We started night weaning about 3 months ago (which I’ll write about in a separate post). It was a slow process, and eventually I settled with nursing her anytime after 4am. As of this past weekend, she is actually no longer breastfeeding at all, day or night (again, I will write more in a separate post!). It’s only been a few nights, but she is still waking up once or twice a night. She is happy to accept me just sleeping next to her in lieu of nursing.
I’m hoping to participate in the Munchkin Meals link up this week, so I will write more about how Alma’s been eating lately in that post.
The biggest change in her food/drink intake has been weaning! Like I said, I will write a post about our weaning experience – the how and the why, etc. It’s been 4 days since she last nursed, and it has been going surprisingly well. I’m still figuring out how to cope with my own emotions about weaning, but all-in-all, I’m feeling confident about my decision to end our breastfeeding relationship. (Almost) 22 months is a really long time, and I’m proud of both us for making it this far!
So much to write here! I’ll try to keep it brief (ha!).
Alma’s growth has slowed down quite a bit, which is normal at her age. She is almost 24 pounds, and by my own measurement, she is 34.5 inches. I’m not sure if that’s accurate, though, because it sure seems like she’s grown more than 1/4 inch since her 18 month check-up! She wears a size 6 in shoes, and 2T in clothing. No new teeth, but she is working on her 2nd year molars. I can feel a bit of one poking through, but it’s taking a long time! She is also getting more hair
Alma is so fun to talk with. She uses a lot of 3-4+ word sentences, and she is understanding & communicating more complex ideas. Like emotions, directions, actions – not just object identification. She’s been using more prepositions (on, in, under), and articles (the, a) over the past couple of months. I think her most complete sentence to date is “Where’d the other one go?”, when she was looking for another shoe. And my personal favorite is when she wakes up from her nap, sits up in bed, and says “Mama, are you? Are you, Mama?” (where are you?).
Like most toddlers, she will repeat (or try to) just about anything she hears – Andrew and I are still adjusting to that! Alma has a large vocabulary – well over 100 words, though you have to have a trained ear to understand a lot of them. She’s got a lot to say!
Alma is really interested in counting things, so we hear her rattling off numbers a lot. She can count to eleven (and once, twelve, I think) in sequence. A lot of that is just memorization, but she does actually count things. The other day she was stacking cloth wipes and counting them as she went. She also likes to identify the colors of objects, and she has about 10 colors that she’s routinely accurate with.
Alma was sick for a few weeks this month, so we’ve had a lot of downtime. At first she just had a little fever/cold, and a few days after that cleared up, her fever returned for about 3-4 days, and it turned out to be Roseola! Not the worst childhood virus, but it definitely put a damper on our Thanksgiving holiday!
Over the past few months, we’ve noticed a shift in Alma’s play. She has always been a mover – never staying in one spot for long, and definitely not sitting to play with any one toy for more than a few minutes. Lately, though, she has been more focused in her play, and more interested in toys. She also talks a lot as she plays, to herself and to her toys, and it’s really fun to watch.
On that note, some of her favorite activities lately are painting, play dough, window stickers, building with Lego’s, and while she’s always loved books, she seems to have an even more intense interest in them. We desperately need to make a trip to the library to get some fresh reading material in the house!
We are really enjoying Alma’s current developmental stage! I think a lot of the ‘fussiness’ and frustration from not having enough communication skills in earlier months has passed, as well as the discomfort from constant teething. Not to imply that we didn’t enjoy Alma in those months, but life is definitely a little more stressful with a discontent toddler attached you day & night!
I’m hoping to do another day-in-the-life post soon for fun, but to summarize, Alma’s days look like this:
- 6am-ish: wake up, play in room/living room
- 6:30/7am: breakfast with Andrew while I get ready
- 7:30/9am-12:30: spend the morning at Z’s house (our schedule is not the same everyday). Alma pretty much snacks throughout the morning, though I try to offer some kind of ‘lunch’ before we leave.
- 1:00-3:30: nap
- 3:30-4:00: snack & books w/ mama
- 4-5pm: one of the following: paint, stickers/coloring, or playdough; play date with friend; outside/park play if decent weather; outing to indoor museum/play area
- 5-6pm: playroom downstairs with either me or Andrew (the other person works out during this time)
- 6-7pm: we make dinner, and all sit down to eat together
- 7pm-ish: Alma plays in the living room for a bit, while we clean up dinner and start her bath. Then she has her bath, brushes teeth, gets pj’s and night diaper on, and we read 3 books.
- 8pm: lights off, Alma and I rock in the glider, while I sing her to sleep. Pretty sweet way to end the day!
Coming up soon: munchkin meals, the end of our breastfeeding journey, and pics from our family holiday photo session!