We had an amazing, and very busy Easter weekend. It started out at our first two year-old birthday party (first of many), and Orelia had a blast at one of her favorite parks.
Saturday afternoon we headed to our friend's toddler Easter egg hunt, where all the kids donned bunny ears and the parents snapped a million photos.
Orelia tried popcorn for the first time, and spent the entire afternoon eating about six cups.
The kids had a great time collecting eggs, always stopping to open each one before moving onto the next. Once Orelia found a stamp in one of her eggs, she was too enamored with it to even consider trying to find any more eggs.
Orelia's favorite way to spend any holiday is with her best girlfriends.
There's lots of love between these girls, and they had the best evening together.
Easter morning, Orelia was even more enthused about about the egg hunt, since we let her eat a piece of chocolate inside each egg. That was a sure-fire way to encourage her to find all the eggs before Harper did.
This girl loves her chocolate like any daughter of mine should.
We filled Orelia's Easter basket with all her favorite things - chalk, a balloon, and lots of bubbles. She spent about an hour that morning blowing all the different types of bubbles the Easter Bunny brought. The one shaped like an ice cream cone was the biggest hit.
Harper even got a chance to blow some bubbles.
After the bubbles were exhausted for the day, Orelia decided Harper needed some sunscreen and a hug. Happy Easter to Harper.
After nap, Orelia donned her prettiest dress yet and posed in our neighbor's pink rose garden. That's what one does on Easter, right?
Natalie and Mitch had us over for Easter dinner, and Orelia was so happy to be reunited with her Auntie. She wouldn't leave her side all afternoon and wanted to swing and cuddle on the hammock with her for hours. It was a happy Easter indeed.
The other day a friend sent me a text wishing Orelia a happy twenty month birthday. I thought surely she was mistaken, until I did the math. We are approaching her second birthday quicker than I ever imagined possible.
The times they are a changing around here. Depending on the day there is either a lot of limit testing or a ton of limit testing going on.
"Hmm, is it still not okay to eat chalk?" "Hmm is it still not okay to stand on furniture?"
Sometimes it also feels like "Hmm Mommy is funny when she is mad."
This age is also really fun since she basically understands everything we say and is able to communicate so well. We often have a hard time discriminating between "oatmeal," "ice cream" and "airplane," but generally she makes her thoughts known. Granted, one still needs to know that "peepee" means teepee and "ma" means milk, but fortunately I'm well-versed in Oreliaisms.
It's great to be able to ask her yes or no questions and have her genuinely respond. You just have to make sure you stop asking "do you want to help me clean up?" and "do you want to take a nap?"
She's definitely been eating more lately, which seems to just be a function of her getting older. We are thrilled she's now eating peanut butter sandwiches, since that means she can eat something filling that doesn't need to be warm or cold or be eaten with a fork or spoon. Hooray for toddler food.
Physically, she is great at running and is learning how to climb ladders on play structures. You sure better keep an eye on her, because she could turn up just about anywhere if you blink.
She loves reading books, and they are a constant in our house. Generally she still wants her own book to flip through while we read a different book, but somehow she's picking up on things in both books at the same time.
She is extremely affectionate with adults and children, and loves to give hugs to her loved ones. The children she knows often object to the length of said hugs, but we're working on that.
Orelia is especially fond of the nanny we now have coming ten hours each week. She has adored her from the moment they met, and I'm so relieved we were able to find someone she bonds with so well. I'm able to go to my appointments during the week easier, can get things done, and even get some extra rest and adult time in. We are all happy with the arrangement. This week our nanny has been taking care of older kids off on spring break, and not a day has gone by that Orelia hasn't repeatedly asked for the nanny. They are great pals.
I sometimes worry she is too girly for her own good. She prefers her gold sparkly shoes above all else, unless she's playing dress-up with her red polka-dot ones. She constantly walks around with purses, and likes to wear bracelets and necklaces. Lately she's taken to asking me to paint her nails, but we are definitely going to wait on that for a bit. I'm glad she is still interested in airplanes and is newly interested in trash trucks, buses, and hang gliders (yes, we see them here).
No child has ever loved play doh as much as this one, at least in my humble opinion. "Doh doh" is a daily request, probably even thrice daily or more.
When I asked John what I should say about Orelia at twenty months, he said "she announces her farts." So there's that. He also reconsidered and said she is very sweet, which I can't deny. We do love this sweet little bundle of energy.
Last spring and summer, playing outside simply meant plopping down a blanket and emptying a bucketful of toys on top.
This year, me and these curls head outside with our shoes tied and ready to go, go, go.
Painting on the sidewalk with water is an idea we learned about at preschool, and helps clean things up a bit while we are at it.
Every day we play with chalk in the backyard. Lately she likes to request I draw "yaya" (Orelia), fish, hand, balloon, and Mommy.
Sometimes she draws directly on Yaya herself, which is at least preferable to drawing on Mama.
We borrowed an old school popping vacuum from a friend recently, and our lawn must be the most vacuumed on the block.
She takes her job seriously.
Thank goodness someone around here does some vacuuming.
An actual job she really does enjoy is watering the plants. We could probably turn off our sprinklers completely and just let her walk around with twenty full watering cans a day. Usually two or three are all I can handle, and she enjoys every minute of it.
Of course when you are outside, in between the chalk and the swing and the trike, there's always plenty of time for silliness.
With this "outdoorsy" lady around, there is never a shortage of silliness.