Caroline turned two 1 month ago. Each week during this month, I've been fascinated by more and more skills emerging. All I want to do all day is sit and observe my child. I have little desire to do much else right now, because I feel like I'm getting such an amazing opportunity to almost study the human brain. This is the science major in me talking, but I feel like I have a live subject at home that I just get to observe and learn from. The only thing better would be a live picture of her brain where I'd get to see the neurons actually branching and making connections! It's ok, you can say it...HUGE science nerd here....but I'm fascinated as I'm sure all Mamas are!
Ok, so here are the latest skills and accomplishments that are blowing my mind:
1. Speech: We always said that Caroline was waiting to talk because she was learning and perfecting. We joked that her first word would be artichoke (something hard), and that she'd just wake up saying sentences one day. Well, that has pretty much happened. She had a few words at 20 months, and only really started talking at about 22 months. This girl is nonstop talking now at 24 months, and is saying HUGE words, and HUGE sentences. She even has good grammar! My husband mentioned this last night, and I had just been noticing as well. She uses her tenses correctly. She's still figuring out you, me, I , etc. She says sentences like "It's too hard for Caroline", "I need help please, Mama", "Book is upside down", "Hello. My name is Caroline", "I need to go outside on a walk", and so many more complicated sentences that I can't even think of right now. She uses words like "too" and "either" correctly- "I don't like this orange, either". And she says every word and every sentence we say. She said "biochemistry" the other day. Today she said "electron" and "molecule". Can you tell we talk about science!? haha She can say her last name "Villegas", and is just blossoming with speech right now. I am also amazed at all of the words she knows without hearing them first. She points to things in books and in real life, and just says what they are. She didn't just hear me say it, as we like to give her the chance to tell us. The language knowledge is unreal to me right now.
2. Concepts: So the latest concept that Caroline is understanding, is the concept of matching. If she sees that I am wearing purple, and she is too, she mentions that we match. If something is the same shape, same color, size, etc. she points out that the items match. She also just catches onto things so quickly. She is focusing on counting right now. When she's focused she can count to ten on her own and identify the numbers. She knows all of her basic shapes and also decided to learn hexagon! She's known her colors and uppercase letters for some time. She knows all of the animals, knows light from dark, big from small, and just so much more. We downloaded a few apps on the iPad for our Christmas trip this year. She was able to demonstrate all of these concepts to me through the use of the apps, and it was fascinating to watch. One of the apps has a big koala bear on one side, and a small koala bear on the other. In between there is clothing in both sizes. She has to drag the big items to the big koala bear, and the small items to the small koala bear. She does this without hesitation or any mistakes! Several apps have her match numbers or shapes, and even count. About a month ago I had her try these very apps and she was not able to do them easily. Now, after not having seen them for a month or so, she's doing every single activity perfectly- no mistakes, and quickly. She's onto learning days of the week next. We started mentioning it to her, and she's remembering and seeming very interested now!
3. Imagination: Literally in the last week and a half, her imagination has exploded! She does all sorts of pretend play now, and is starting to tell stories! She'll "go shopping". She tells what she's buying at the store, she pays and gets her receipt! She feeds her stuffed animal friends, and even takes them on walks. She puts them "outside" in the hallway for a walk, and just runs with her imagination. We bought her a play stroller for Christmas, and it turned out to be the best gift! It was $10 well spent! The other day we were at the airport. We tried to use the family restroom but it was locked and we had to go find the regular women's restroom to use. When we came back she told Daddy and another woman in line all about how "the door was locked and Mama kicked it in!". She had us all laughing so hard! My husband and I just loved hearing her create this scenario that seemed so real to her!
Side note: Long shot...but to the lady that was there with us in the airport... my husband and I are still thinking about you. We wanted to do more and say more when you told us that your mom had just passed away two days before Christmas. I'll never forget our brief moment in the airport where you told us that your mom's name was Caroline, and your middle name is Caroline. I didn't know it, but my husband and I were both keeping an eye out for you in the airport in Tucson before we took off. We wish you all the best. And, if for some reason this post ever makes it into your hands, we'd love to hear from you!
4. Thoughtfulness: Caroline has suddenly become very in tune with the emotions of others around her. Today I was bringing wood in for a fire. The wood caught my skin just right and I had a little splinter. Caroline immediately said (from across the room) - "Are you ok, Mama?". I had no idea she'd even noticed, and it was so sweet that she went the extra step to check on me and make sure I was ok. Yesterday at dinner, I wasn't feeling well. My husband was asking me how I was doing. Caroline said "Mama go lay down". She's really taking on such a caring role right now. She's also saying "I love you" on her own now! She occasionally says it to me before I say it to her. She said it to one of her stuffed animals the other day as well.
5. Opinions: This is probably where the "terrible twos" start to come in, but I'm also in awe watching this happen. Caroline is very decisive, and is now expressing her opinions. She tells us "I don't like that", says "no" a lot (we correct her to say no thank you), and tells us her "needs". She hasn't distinguished yet between needs and wants, of course. If I ask her what she wants for breakfast, she just tells me. I totally don't even have to give her options anymore. I still do to limit the choices, but she comes up with the food that she wants. It's so great to be able to communicate in this way and know what she likes/dislikes, wants/doesn't want, etc.
6. Routines: This girl knows her routines so well that she tells me what we are doing next. "No more play. Nap time", she says. Why yes it is! You can see the disappointment in her eyes when she realizes that it's time, but she just accepts it and takes her nap or goes to bed. Again, this is something that I am fascinated by. The strength that it takes for her to tell me that it is time, and to not complain is huge. She seems so mature to be able to do this at such a young age. This is not to say she's not upset about it at times, but she's so used to her routines, I think we've avoided a TON of battles as a result. She knows that nap happens after we clean up from lunch, and that bed happens when her clock turns blue. Sleep goes extremely smoothly in our house. I love seeing our hard work paying off to benefit Caroline so much, and am so glad that we prioritized her routines and sleep schedules. We're really seeing the benefits now.
I know I'm forgetting so much right now. I want to capture everything, and it is just so hard to remember it all- even right now in the moment. If I think of more, I'll add to the comments as an update. Don't forget to add your 2 year old's skills to the comments as well. I am so eager to read what other children are up to at this age. Be sure to note the specific age, since the 2nd year is quite the long span of time! Caroline is 25 months old as I write this... Thank you so much for sharing! I look forward to reading about your little one's fascinating skills!
|I thought of 2 more things to add to the list!|
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