Two is…

I don’t know quite how it happened (well, I suppose I do, but time is weird), but here we are, nearly a month into life with a two year old. Her birthday was a casual family day, but it was also fun and adorable. The Engineer’s Two Year Old is proving a pretty fun person to get to know.

So far, Two is up and down and a bit all over the place, especially because it coincides with having a month to pack up all our stuff and move halfway across the world.

Two is also:

  • Pleading eyes and “Watch videos now, please?”
  • Long bedtimes and early early mornings (we’re talking 5am, or even earlier!)
  • Lots and lots of stories, again and again and again.
  • Picnics (or NICNICS!) on the floor in the lounge with all her friends.
  • Copying everything we do, with sometimes hilarious consequences.
  • Counting “1 2 3 4 6 8 9 10”
  • Stripping down for “nudie” time whenever she gets the chance.
  • Possessives: “Elsie’s friends” “Elsie’s Papa” “Elsie’s snot”
  • Feeding the fish one tiny piece of food at a time, so it takes forever.
  • Reading her animal books to me from the back seat. “Ox bellows. Mama make noise!”
  • Running away as fast as she can to show us she is done.
  • Showing us just how much she remembers from a surprisingly long time ago.
  • Snapchat. So much Snapchat. (She calls it “masks”)
  • A quite sudden ability to complete more complicated puzzles.
  • A whole new level of communication. “Spicy! Spicy mouth! Milk helps…” and “Kiss knee, Mama. Ouchie Elsie”
  • Inventing names for things. Flavoured crackers are “messy crackers”.
  • Telling us a story over and over until we figure it out.
  • Meltdowns over stopping her using our phones.

Two is hard. Two is messy. Two is a whole lotta fun.

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Two is two candles on a birthday cake and one birthday girl enthusiastically blowing them out.

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Moment by moment

Parenting a small child is a pretty constant cycle of sameness. For us the cycle involves two (or three) naps a day, an activity out of the house each morning, chores and chilling out in the afternoon, dinner and bedtime. That cycle can seem fairly relentless some days. But when I stop, notice, and enjoy the moments within the cycle, it is so easy to find the joy.

Some recent moments in the life of The Engineer’s Baby:

– Big giggles for me saying “cricket” when New Zealand won the World Cup semifinal.

– Babies sitting in a circle and grabbing toys off each other at playgroup.

– A very serious conversation with a stick of capsicum at dinner time (made more hilarious by the globs of hummus on her face).

– Lots of long sleepy feeds as we get used to a new nap routine.

– Grabbing a wrench and “helping” her Papa install the new gate for her bedroom door.

– A giggly nudie run after we came in from the paddling pool.

– Discovering that her voice sounds funny when she talks into a cup.

– Finding the baby in the mirror all by herself.

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I don’t suppose these things are as hilarious or amazing to someone who is not this baby’s parent. But all of them made me smile the first time, and made me smile again when writing them down. So I hope that even if the specific moments don’t translate well, the joy in this list is evident. Because there really is so much joy.