I've said this before, but this early toddler time period feels like an incredible sweet spot. Sloane's personality bursts forth every morning and gives us little glimpses into who she is as a developing human. She continually surprises me with what she knows, and reminds me that these little ones observe and digest far more information than we assume. I've been getting her to identify animals, objects and people in books and pictures just to catch myself up on what she knows. And she responds to commands like a tiny person! What!?
Another fun/scary learning curve has been with her physical confidence. Every time we go to the park it seems like she is able to climb to a higher ledge as I watch (/hover) with a mixture of terrified pride. Her knowledge of her own limits and abilities fascinates me.
And her independence! "Brushing" her teeth on her own, feeding herself, not wanting to hold our hands to cross the street, pushing the cart, carrying in groceries, trying to use our keys to lock the doors...she watches every little thing we do and insists on trying it. It's amazing (Am I gushing? This stage of development has always been my favourite) and actually so helpful in regards to some things. Bed time routine is awesome, she has a system down: I put away her bottle, she cleans up the books, I turn on the white noise, she throws any excess items on the floor out into the hall (even if it belongs in her room...) I close the blinds, she closes the door...hug, kiss, goodnight! All these things that she has seen us do so has decided to take them on herself.
And, of course, the flip side: if we don't let her do things herself she has mastered the aggressive throw, the swipe everything off the table, and the full body arch onto the floor, and she uses "NO" loudly and liberally. Obviously there are times when this drives me crazy. In an attempt to keep my temper as best I can I usually just let out an exasperated grunt when she chucks fresh food on the floor, and she has started doing the exact same thing when she does something the frustrates her. But there is still a small part of me that is fascinated by all the behaviour. This is her, inserting her independence and growing as she starts to grasp gigantic concepts like will and possession. Or this is her simply feeding her curiosity about the world! I don't know how many times she has to throw food on the floor to get over that particular curiosity but hey...something is being learned there.