Nap schedule: As mentioned in this post about When and How to Transition to One Nap, Caroline was simply not taking a nice long nap until we started putting her down a bit later in the day.
This is the schedule we had to use for a while:
7 am wake, 2-4 pm nap, 7 pm bed
She did that for a couple of weeks, and then started showing signs of tiredness a bit earlier (1/1:30).
She is now sleeping from 1:30-3:30 pm, which is working much better for us! She has also done a couple of 1-3:30 pm naps. It is almost as if she needed to be taught how to take a 2 hr nap by putting her down later. Now she is putting it into practice at a more convenient time, and
is avoiding getting overtired by doing this as well!
Wake time: Caroline is literally off and running! She's only been walking for 3 months now, so I can't believe she is already full speed ahead! Not only has she learned to run, she is learning a lot of new language skills! She can say mama and dada, but is also starting to experiment with other consonant sounds, and has her own "words" for things. She understands our communication so well! I can ask her to put an object in a specific location, and she does it without hesitation. She helps me with a variety of tasks and enjoys it so much! If she spills her milk, for example, she goes and gets a wipe and attempts to clean it up on her own. She is learning so quickly!
She is also much more aware of the capabilities of her body. She can climb up and down the new stool in the bathroom (only took 1.5 days of practice and explanation), she gets down off of the couch with ease (so much so, I leave her on the couch by herself without worry), she climbs on and off of her rocking horse on her own, she brushes her teeth, lets me put her hair in pigtails again (also helps to comb her hair), and so much more! She can point to most of her body parts, recognizes things outside from learning them in books (stop signs, school buses, grass, leaves, sky, clouds, planes, etc). She can play on a playground now with assistance!
She's also learned to wait and/or ask for help, and understands to hold my hand when crossing the street or in a parking lot. We are working on listening to things such as staying close and
coming back to mama when called. She does this a little bit, but it certainly needs improvement LOL!
We've started doing 10 minutes of true independent play time at this age as well. She goes up into her room and has access to the hallway as well. I leave the monitor on (so I can hear her), and I stay downstairs. This is giving me a chance to get a few things done, and she is learning to be without mama for a few minutes, and that it is ok to be without me!
It is amazing to see how much she's learned! Over the past 15 months she's been watching and observing so much. Now she is putting it all into practice!
Caroline is also getting really good at using a fork and spoon! I would say she has the fork down, and she is just starting up with a spoon again, but is doing really well. We also give her full rolls, sandwiches, slices of quesadillas, etc. She takes bites (most of the time), and does
well without everything being perfectly cut up into bite sized pieces.
She definitely understands "no", and even throws little fits when she hears the word. We are starting to get a little more strict with our discipline now that we know she understands things so well. For example, she only gets to eat what we've prepared for breakfast/lunch/dinner. If she doesn't like it, or doesn't want to eat it, she is done and has to wait until the next meal. Part of the meal is always something we know she will eat at least a little bit of. She is told "no", and if she doesn't listen, the object is taken away, or she is removed from the situation. As her understanding grows, our expectations grow as well. Read more about her tantrums and our discipline here...
We started potty training right at 15 months. It was going very well (more pee in the potty than on the floor), however, she still does not have a way to tell us that she needs to go. Her communication skills need to improve slightly before we do this. So, we are holding off for now. I fully expect this to happen soon, however. She is definitely ready (aside from the communication barrier)!
I am super excited for the next wonder week! She is about 1 month out from leap 10. I've read and heard from other mamas that this leap is when the words really start to flow! I can't wait to hear her voice more!