i've found that more than the big baby milestones (crawling, sitting up, pulling up, etc), i mark the passage of time with ellie by these things that surprise me or that just are so her - it's how she responds to something new, or this way she attempts something that warms my heart in a way i didn't know possible. right now, i'm taking stock of these current ellie-isms i just can't get enough of:
how, when she's drinking milk from a sippy cup, she likes to approach it like a racecar driver who just won the Indy 500. we like a good amount of the milk to drip down our chin & onto our chest. we guzzle it like we just won the race of our lives, even if we do it a couple of times a day.
the way she knows a pint of blueberries -- when i reach in the fridge & pull it out, she goes nuts. she literally can differentiate it from a container of raspberries or blackberries (those get excited responses too, just slightly more subdued) -- she leans back in her high chair, eyes as wide as saucers, then leans forward, practically frantic with anticipation while i wash them off. it puts the biggest smile on my face.
how when i'm carrying her & we're walking around, i'll look over & she has these pursed lips as she looks around, one hand holding onto my shirt. it's this whole "yep, just me & my mama on another adventure" look on her face that just kills me.
the way we play hide & seek around ryan & my bed. she figures out all my moves, crawls so intently to the side where she knows i am & giggles with delight as soon as she spots me. she then wants to climb up on me, reach for my face, & coo with delight that she has me right there next to her. it's hard to feel more loved than you do in that moment.
how loyal she is to two "toys:" a carrot soft rattle & her hairbrush. they're both orange & the perfect size for her little hands to clutch. we don't have a ton of toys, but i'm convinced we could only have those two & she'd be happy as can be.
the laugh/giggle she only gives when she's on the swings, it's this belly laugh that is just unbelievable!
what i like to call her "gettysburg address moments" post-nap. sometimes, she wakes up crying, but more often these days i know she is up because i hear her lecturing her nursery. when i look on the monitor, she is standing up in her crib making all sorts of noises (that more & more sound like talking!), looking around the room as if she's telling it something really important.
these are the moments of utter joy in motherhood -- there are hard, confusing, challenging, unsettling moments in between, but i cling to these because i know there will be new ones soon & i want to soak these ones up as many times as i can. present, the very best thing i can be for her.
have a wonderful weekend sweet friends. xo