28 months

Dear Catie,

Today you’re 28 months old. I haven’t done a monthly update in a really long time, and I don’t know that I’ve ever written one addressed to you. I guess it’s because when you were a baby, it felt silly to write these letters to you when there was no way you’d understand the words. But lately, you suddenly seem like such a little grown-up person, I think that if I read this out loud to you, you’d understand a pretty good portion of it.

Catie-bug, you are so much fun right now. Every day is a new little adventure, and I love getting to see what you’re going to come up with next. Last night, you were bored and you so desperately wanted my undivided attention, but I was putting away groceries, then doing the dishes and getting dinner started. I felt bad, but once I had dinner going, I went and sat with you in the living room. We pulled out your little toy farm animals and they all had conversations with each other. They said night-night and went into the barn to go to sleep, and then they woke up again in the morning and everyone greeted each other with such enthusiasm. And that was all you; I was playing along and providing bits of dialog here & there, but the game was all yours. You have a ridiculous amount of imagination, I love watching you play out little storylines with your toys.

Catie playing dress-up

Of course, once your Daddy came home from work, you wanted nothing to do with me anymore. That’s fine, you’d spent the whole day with me and I know you really missed him. You threw quite a fit when I took you upstairs for a bath; you kept screaming, “Daaaaddy!!” Normally I would’ve let him give you a bath, but he was exhausted and needed some downtime to recover. I know that’s hard for you to understand, but you’ll get it someday. After your bath, the two of you snuggled in our bed and watched cartoons together until bedtime. I barely heard a peep from either of you except when you laughed. There are times when I like to eavesdrop on you two. You chatter away to him and he pretends to understand everything you say. It’s so sweet, the special little bond that the two of you have.

Dave & Catie heading to the water

And to be fair, he does get a few keywords here and there, but for the most part, I’m still your primary translator. Which I suppose makes sense, because I spend more time with you than anyone else. Last week you got sick with a nasty stomach virus, and after you threw up on yourself, your Daddy took you upstairs to clean you up while I cleaned the floor. You were crying, “Jamas!” and he thought you were asking to watch Thomas the Tank Engine. I had to explain that you were asking for your pajamas. He was close, but not quite there.

Later this summer, I’m going to be gone for 3 days, and it’ll be the first time that you and your Daddy will be on your own for that long. I’m going to be trying to get him up to speed on his Catie-speak so you don’t have too many communication breakdowns while I’m gone. I’m less worried now than I was a month ago, because you’re getting so much better at making yourself understood.

Catie playing dress-up

Catie, you astound me with the things you remember. You left one of your Thomas trains, Toby, at the baby-sitter’s house two weeks ago. You asked me where Toby was, and I told you that he was at Miss Nicole’s house. A few days later, you asked me, “Toby at Miss Nicole’s? He with Kiersten and Carissa?” [Kiersten & Carissa are Nicole’s 2 daughters.] You’ve asked this every couple of days, like you’re just checking to see if the status has changed. Today is your first day back at daycare in over two weeks (we had a visit from Mimi & Pop-Pop, followed by you getting sick, then a holiday weekend), and I already warned Nicole that probably the first thing out of your mouth is going to be along the lines of “Where’s Toby?”

Catie and Kiersten
Catie and Kiersten

And not to brag, but oh my lord, you are so smart. I recently cleaned out your toy chest of all of the old toys you no longer play with, and to reward you for being so good about me putting a lot of your stuff in storage, I got out a toy that your Grandma got you for Christmas. It’s a toy laptop that’s meant for kids ages 3 & up. I never opened it because it seemed too advanced for you. And truth be told, there are some games that you probably won’t be able to play for at least another year. But you love it, you call it “my ‘puter” and carry it around with you. (You even wanted to bring it to bed with you; a request that was denied because I knew you’d stay awake playing with it instead of sleeping.) You know how to turn it on & off, and the game where you’re asked to identify a number or a letter? Baby girl, you rule at that game. You have almost 100% accuracy with the numbers; you sometimes need help with the letters, but good grief, you’re not even two & a half yet! Seriously, you blow us away.

I hate that this is blurry, I love her laugh

This is not to say that everything is roses & sunshine. You do have meltdowns, and man alive, they are some epic tantrums when they happen. But I’m guessing that it’s no worse than any other two year-old on the planet. And you’re very good about time-outs; you cry, but you seem to understand what it’s about and you sit there for the two minutes like you’re supposed to. And there have been other road bumps, like when we tried potty-training a few weeks ago. I would like to apologize for that, you clearly weren’t ready. We’ll try again in a few weeks, and if it still doesn’t work, well, we’ll just keep trying until you get the hang of it. No big deal.

Which reminds me. The whole issue of pooping has become a rather huge deal since the trauma of potty-training. Even with a diaper on, you usually cry and scream when you poop instead of just doing it. But the other night, you pooped while I was taking a shower. You came into the bathroom afterward and proudly announced, “Mommy, I did HUGE poop! I did it perfect!” And then you applauded yourself. Yes, the poop was in your diaper and not the potty, but the fact that you did it without crying and a whole bunch of drama was a major accomplishment in itself. I was so proud of you.

Catie playing dress-up

Overall, you’ve suddenly gotten so much easier, so much more self-sufficient, so much more grown-up, that it’s even got your Daddy and me thinking that maybe we could handle the idea of having another baby someday. [Aside to other people reading this: no, I’m not pregnant. Just considering the possibility.] I think you’d be an amazing big sister.

We love you so much, Catie-bug. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for us.