Happy 22 Month Birthday!

Two months and counting until the big TWO! I’ve had several random people ask how old the girls are this week, and I’m really having trouble remembering that they are 22 months. The first thing out of my mouth is usually that they are 18 months…or is it 20? 
22? WHEN DID THIS HAPPEN? I can’t say I’m loving all this growing up business, but it’s amazing to see how much the girls have developed in certain areas in just one month.
                       
                       
                    
Samantha–
To think we ever worried about you being behind Amelia in speech. You had a mini-explosion of new words this month and were eager to communicate EXACTLY what you wanted. More times than I could count, you would say a phrase over and over again, exasperated, as I parroted back your request, unable to decipher it.
 Finally, you would just grab my hand, drag me downstairs, and show me that YOU WANTED A DRINK by pointing to the sink and your cup. The look on your face when we finally understand you is a mix of relief (that your parents are not complete idiots) and pride in yourself. 
Twin talk is still your language of choice, however, and you will babble with sister all the live long day (and throughout nap time, until we catch you). 
You made great strides in potty training interest this month. Just in the last two weeks, you started telling us when you had to go #1, and although you can’t always hold it until we whisk you to the potty, just the fact that you are recognizing the urge to go is encouraging.
 You LOVE to simply sit on the potty and request to go first thing in the morning and right after nap. Even if nothing comes out, you simply like to be a big girl, flush the toilet and wash your hands. We were waiting until the holidays were over to officially potty train you, and you are SO ready. You have grown to despise a dirty diaper, which has become a problem right before bed as you scream like a banshee if you happen to pee in your diaper before you fall asleep. Official potty training will begin within the next few weeks and my prediction is you will pick it right up and sing hallelujah as you say goodbye to those annoying diapers. 
Some of your favorite activities this month included hopping (while shouting “Hop, hop, hop!”), jumping from your toddler table to the couch (uh oh), drawing circles, and helping set the table by choosing your own plate, cup and silverware. You were so helpful to me all month taking in groceries, unloading the dishwasher and sweeping/vacuuming with your toddler-sized gear. 
You have almost perfected the art of manipulation by saying, “please” and “thank you” when you want something (how can I say no to those big blue eyes and your best well-mannered little voice?) 
You developed a weird phobia of frogs that we can’t quite figure out. One night, you were reading a book with Daddy and you went white as a ghost when you got to the part about the frog. There’s a frog living in our fountain on the patio that croaks in the evening and you started pointing outside to the fountain, screaming uncontrollably. Not sure what that’s about!
Your favorite words this month were the similar sounding “Grammy” and “gummy.” Coincidence? I think not. It’s Christmas every day when I pull out your vitamin gummy in the morning– you actually clap your hands and giggle with glee. 
Your curly locks get compliments wherever we go and it’s fascinating to watch your hair go from straight to ringlets after a bath. Since I’ve always had stick-straight hair, I’m really going to have to do some research on how to handle those curls!
You are growing up way too fast, Samantha, and we love every last high-spirited inch of you!
                            
                               
                     
                                 
                      
                          
                     
Amelia– 
You are so quiet sometimes that you almost fly under the radar…until I find you on top of the fridge/inside the pantry/under the laundry hamper/insert random place here. Quiet as a mouse, but quick and sly like a fox you are. Your prefer to be surreptitious in your mischief, whether using Samantha as a decoy so you can dump out an entire bag of dog food, or waiting until I am preoccupied in a conversation with Daddy to draw on the wall with crayons. I’m going to tell all your future boyfriends that you used to eat dog food, by the way. 
You’re incredibly sweet, mild-tempered (most of the time) and soooo not the squeaky wheel, that you always catch us by surprise when you cause trouble. Unlike high-octane Samantha, you prefer the more subtle approach when it comes to rebellion. At dinner, you will wait until we look away to create a mini swimming pool in the circle on your tray with your smoothie and will then proceed to “swim” in it with your fingers. 
Lately, you have become more daring and love to test my reactions to everything from pretending to step off the side of the sidewalk to holding a glass of water and tipping it ever-so-slightly to see if I’ll grab it from you before you create a waterfall on the floor. One of your favorite tricks is holding a piece of chalk and looking me straight in the eye, while you allllllmost place it in your mouth and then whip it back out again. I know it’s made it into your mouth once I see the tell-tale chalky lipstick on your face. Yuck! 
You are not as big of a fan as Samantha when it comes to the potty, but you like to sit on it and “pretend” like you have to go, just to see Mommy and Daddy get excited. I’m sure you tell Samantha, “Watch the new trick I taught Mommy and Daddy– I’ll sit on the potty and they’ll clap their hands for me!” 
This month, you were the Queen of Christmas, hugging all the Rudolphs and Frostys in town, unwrapping gifts with Olympic athlete-like intensity and having a grand time on all our outings. Seeing you enjoy the magic of the holidays made it magical for the rest of us. 
Your favorite activities this month included cooking (both real and imaginary). You really get in the zone in your play kitchen and have whipped up the most masterful pretend omelets, pizzas, and soups the world has ever seen. I would know, since you’ve asked me to sample all of them. 
Besides your kitchen, my lap is your second favorite spot, which you’ll only leave for a split second to search out another book to read. You always choose the most convenient times for stories too– like when I’m cooking or on the phone. The word “wait!” is something you’ve struggled with, but are getting much better at. It’s a joy reading with you and I have a hard time saying no– even if I’m busy at the moment. There’s just something about you holding up a book and looking up at me that’s irresistible…you must have learned some of those manipulation tricks from your sister!
You also love to have Daddy set up your tent and “camp” in the family room with Samatha…and fifty-nine other stuffed animals/all your blankies and pillows. Pretty soon you’ll be camping for real!
Your food snob ways continued this month as you were picky picky picky (except for breakfast– always a hit). I think I’ve developed a formula that gives me a pretty good prediction of whether you’ll eat or not. More time finding a toddler-specific recipe/more time preparing a meal = less likelihood you’ll actually eat it! 
 We’ve also found that you actually eat a lot more when we completely ignore the fact that you’re refusing to eat certain things at the dinner table– no more bribing, “train rides” of food on your spoon or reverse psychology from us.  Your resolve has met its match and you will keep receiving nice little cut-up veggies and pieces of chicken on your plate, no matter how much you turn up your nose at it. I know you’ll succumb eventually! 
As for talking, the majority is in your secret language, and you are generally a girl of few words. When you do speak, it’s something wise! While passing the jewelry counter at Costco with Daddy, you pointed at the jewelry and said, “Mama!” I’m glad I can count on you to have my back. 
You love to sing and say all the names of your animals as you hold them up.  I won’t be surprised if your language explodes again within the next few weeks as you are a keen observer and seem to be taking in every little detail of the world around you. It’s not uncommon for me to call your name three times as Samantha and I are walking ahead of you while you’re completely wrapped up in studying the ants on the sidewalk.  Daddy is betting you will be an engineer or scientist for sure. 
Silly girl– we love you and your beautiful, happy-go-lucky personality!

                          

Lots of love, 
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