18 months is such a fun age. You are so happy and sweet. You still don't really talk much, but we know you are so, so smart. You understand everything and follow directions. You'll talk soon... and not talking makes you still seem little. I like you being little. =)
* You walk or run with such a happy little spring in your step. You often have a baby tucked under your arm. Right now your favorite baby is one that lived in the garage for awhile. She's not the prettiest little thing, but you sure love her.
* You have a fun little happy dance that you do before we give you something you want. (Usually juice or milk or grapes or putting on your shoes to take you outside.) You stomp your little feet and squeal. So excited.
* You eat well every couple of days. Some days it seems like you don't eat anything, but then you make up for it the next day. We have pizza every Friday night. We know you'll eat well on Fridays. =) (You also love peanut butter sandwiches lately!)
* You still love books. You sit on the floor by your basket of books and just look through them for the longest time.
* You even went willingly to Grandpa for the first time when he offered to read you a book.
* When you wake up from your nap or on the weekends, you'll usually get books off your shelf and sit and look at them. I'll come in to get you and you'll have a crib full of books. (But you always want to put them all back on the shelf before you get out. You're such a good little picker-upper.) =)
* I love to watch you sit and play...
* Especially when you sit all cute and cross-legged like this...
* You like to grab a toy phone, or remote or anything really and hold it to your ear like a phone. You walk around jabbering away and using all kinds of expression.
* You figured out how to walk backwards a few months ago and it was the cutest thing ever. You thought you were pretty big stuff.
* You LOVE to be outside. You would stay out there all day if we would let you. But we don't, so you sometimes have to go limp and start crying and make mommy or daddy carry you inside. "Life's rough when you're little bitty." (a favorite quote around here... Grandma Law said one time when Sophie was tiny. Corey and I have been using it ever since.)
* We have to watch you close outside because you've learned to open and shut the gate. You sometimes like to walk over to Craig and Miss Amy's and sit on their back steps and look for Miley. Ornery little baby. Luckily, Marley is a good dog and doesn't run away when the gate is open. She's had plenty of opportunities!
* You sneak into the bathroom when we're not paying attention and play in Marley's food and water bowl. You like to get a Kleenex from the box and get it wet then wring it out and carry it around the house. Mommy and Daddy don't really love that.
* You LOVE to be on the trampoline. You run around in a big circle as fast as you can and it is hilarious. It doesn't matter how many times I've watched you do it, it still makes me laugh every. single. time.
* And then your hair gets all crazy and staticy...
* The slide is another favorite. This is your happy/excited face. I see this face every day when I pick you up from daycare. You squeal and run to me as fast as you can. It just might be the favorite part of my day. Daddy gets the same face and even more squealing and running when he comes in the house. And it doesn't matter if he's been gone all day or if he's just been outside for a few minutes. You get crazy happy whenever Daddy comes in the door.
* You stopped taking a bottle a few months ago. Mommy kept giving you your bedtime bottle longer than you needed it, probably. It was just another one of those baby things I didn't want to give up. You've never taken a paci and didn't have a hard time giving up a bottle. Such a big girl.
* And you quickly found another use for some of your old bottles...
* My friend, Kristi, gave me this little taggy blankie a few days after we found out you were going to be a girl. It's been close to you ever since you were born. You aren't super attached to it and you'll go to bed without it, but it's become part of our routine to find your blankie at bedtime or naptime. We wander around looking for it and you get so excited when we find it. You immediately grab it, tuck it under your head and lay your head on my shoulder. You hold it and snuggle with it while we rock or sway, and you always grab on to one of the little blue tags. Always.
* When I try to lay you down you will say, "Huh uh" and clamp your legs around me like a little monkey. I hold you and snuggle you for a little bit longer. Happily.
* You are simply delightful, Gretchen Jane. We absolutely adore everything about you and can't get enough of you. If I could get a guarantee that another baby would be as easy as you have been... I would totally do this again. (Jessi said she would have twins if she knew they would be like you!) God knew that you were just what our little family needed... and I am so glad He did. I cannot imagine life without you.
We love you, Gretchie-bug!