month 23 (and then some)

Dear Brooklynn, Yep, I skipped your last monthly letter and I’m going to cram two whole months into this one. I imagine that you’re thinking that it might be due to the fact that you’re getting older and changes aren’t quite as rapid as they used to be.

Hi!

You’d be wrong. These past two months, you’ve changed so much. You can run, and you do it quite a bit. Sometimes you high step around, sometimes you prance on your tip-toes, and sometimes, when you’re worried about where Mom is headed to, you flat out book it after her. You climb up hills and come flying down them, and even though I wait for you to tumble and fall just because of the breakneck speed you attain, you typically manage to remain upright.

You go down the big kid slide at the playground. You walk up and down stairs with the help of a hand rail – no more crawling around for you. You jump, and every fourth jump or so, you actually get off the ground. We’re teaching you to jump, stand up straight, throw your hands in the air and yell “TA DA!”

Measuring

You can catch a volleyball as long as it lands in your outstretched arms. You climb up and down off of your high chair. You climb up and down off of chairs, and if you want to see what we’re doing on the kitchen counter, you push a chair over and stand on it next to us. You blow on your food to cool it down when it’s hot and when the wind blows outside and you don’t have a jacket on, you tell us that you’re cold.

You know dogs, cats, bunnies, and fish, and you look up in the sky to find the planes flying overhead. You identify trucks by sound when they drive by the house, and you find cows in pastures when we’re driving in the car. You know the names of your friends at daycare, your family members (including aunts, uncles, and cousins), and you can correctly identify who plays saxophone in the basement at your grandparent’s house. (Yep, it’s Uncle Mike.)

Crazy with Grandpa

During the past two months, we took two long road trips, one to Lincoln and the other to North Dakota. Your mom and I finally got an iPad and a holder so you can watch movies in the car. While we don’t believe in a lot of screen time for someone your age, passing several hours with you happy and occupied in the back seat is a wonderful experience.

You give hugs and kisses, sometimes you cuddle in bed with us, and you say love you over the phone to me. You come to have your owies kissed all better and you like to show off your belly button.

In the Pool

We still refer to you as our baby, but in reality, you are anything but. We took some parent-tot swim lessons over the course of four weekends. The first time we got in the water, I had fingernail marks in my shoulders from how tightly you clung to me. By the end, you would jump in off the side into my arms and walk all by yourself in the shallow end of the kiddie pool. Now, when you see a big building anywhere, you assume that it’s like our rec center and ask to go swimming at the pool.

You like to shop and push the cart by yourself. If we let you, you would also fill it up with anything that shakes, crinkles, or catches your eye. At least you don’t mind that we always take everything back out before we leave. You don’t understand the concept of buying stuff to take home. It’s still more of a game just to collect neat stuff.

Good Eater

Your favorite words are snack (Nack!), cake (which you can say spot on), and Mama. You like to cover up with blankets and pretend to go "night night", and you really like to see babies. When the babies leave, it's probably because they are "seeping" (sleeping).

You can reach a few light switches around the house. (Please remember to turn the lights off after you turn them on.) Just last week while we were visiting your grandparents, you managed to climb out of a pack'n'play all by yourself and start coming up the stairs after a nap. We think you had a little help from the bed right next to it, but still, pretty impressive. Your mom say that potty training and converting your crib to a toddler bed is just around the corner. You're growing up so fast.

Poser

It's wonderful to watch you become such a little person. And when I get home from work and you yell Dada and run over, give me a hug, and tell me you love me - well, that's about the best feeling in the world.

Love, Dad