Happy Birthday to Ella – the Big Two!

I almost can’t believe it – my baby girl turns two today. The time has gone so fast. It seems like just yesterday we were bringing her home from the hospital and now she’s this amazing, unique real little person with an amazing personality.

I almost feel like my words cannot do justice to what a beautiful little person she is. She is absolutely amazing and everything I wanted in my third and final child. Watching her grow up these past two years has been so bittersweet, knowing she’s my last. I look forward to seeing her learn new things, say new words, grow beyond needing someone every minute … yet know with every passing minute, she’s growing older, more independent and I’ll never again have a child this little. I try to memorize every moment. I take a ridiculous amount of photographs. And I write about her.

Ella is a true joy. She is funny – always joking around and trying to make us laugh or doing something to provoke her dad, sister, brothers or I to make her giggle and laugh. Her giggle and laugh are infectious. It’s impossible to feel anything but pure joy when you hear it. Nothing warms my heart more.

Ella is in early intervention for speech therapy as she is a little behind where she should be for her age. She’s made great progress in the four months of therapy and we’ve enjoyed being able to communicate with her more and more and she’s less frustrated now that we can understand a lot of what she says. Her first sentence was just the other day “I want gum.” (She discovered gum last week and thinks it’s the best thing ever!). She is also stringing together words like “Daddy, bye-bye, red car, gone?” when Mike leaves the house to run an errand or go to work. Her vocabulary is blossoming and it’s so reassuring to hear. Of course, one of her most favorite words is “no.” “Mine” is a close second. But that’s to be expected!

Ella loves animals, especially cats. We adopted Wally, our nearly 1-year-old kitten back in February and she loves following him around the house, “meowing” after him. She can’t says “Wally” or “cat” so she just calls him “meow.” Her daycare provider has four kitties and she loves playing with all of them there. Just last week she tried to climb her cat tower to get them. Ella also likes our nearly 1-year-old puppy Kenai, although he’s big and often bumps into her accidentally.

Ella takes after me in that she’s both shy and stubborn. She is very hesitant when someone she doesn’t know approaches her (I was at this age too), even in her own home. I had a friend she’d never met come over last week with her four-year-old son and she cried and had to sit on my lap. It took her a couple hours before she was comfortable enough to leave my side and even then she wouldn’t interact with them. It’s like this with her speech language pathologist too. Sometimes she’ll play games on the floor with her and other times she won’t say a word or get off the couch to interact. A few weeks ago she went for a weekend to my parents without her dad and I and I was concerned how that would go, but she did amazingly well. She had her sister and brother with her and she’s loves her grandparents, so that helped. It was a good first step.

And the stubbornness, oh my God. She is my daughter. When she wants something, she wants it and no amount of trying to talk her out of it, changing the subject, or trying to strategically hide whatever she sees/wants will deter her. We’ve entered into the “terrible twos” already, with full-blown scream, crying fits. Since I’m equally as stubborn, I don’t give in and she goes into her room, in the crib, until she calms herself down. My other two never really had the so-called “terrible twos” and were really great until about three when a little bit of that crept in, but not much. So it’s new territory for me. We’re learning together.

One more thing Ella is – fast. When she wants something, she can get to it before you can every time! Mike and I are always commenting on how quick she is for as tiny as she is. And she has the strongest grip too (goes along with being stubborn)!

I’d like to say that Ella is a momma’s girl, but I think she’s equally a daddy’s girl. She loves being with both of us. Nothing warms my heart more than to see Ella grab a book and climb up into her daddy’s lap so he can read it with her. He’s amazing with her, as he is with all our children.

We’re having a low-key celebration at home tonight with cake and ice cream and presents, which should be nice. She’s getting a play tent/tunnel combo and a water table for the backyard, both of which I know she’s going to love.

I am so looking forward to what this next year brings for Ella in terms of development, especially her language and her personality. Having Ella has made my family feel complete for me and I’m so grateful I have to blessing of being her momma.

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2 Comments

  • Grandma Theodore

    She is surely a joy to behold. I’m only sorry that I can’t see her more often. Happy birthday to our precious little Ella. May all of her dreams come true β€πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‚πŸ°πŸ’πŸŽˆπŸŽπŸ˜˜πŸ¦„πŸ¦‹πŸŒ·πŸŒΌπŸŒ»πŸŒΉπŸ­πŸ¬πŸŽ€πŸ›β€οΈπŸ’›πŸ’šπŸ’œπŸ’™πŸ’

    • Jen

      She really is! I wish our schedules worked out better and you guys could see her more often!

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