Blowing kisses to fishes.

Blowing kisses to fishes.

Hello sweetie,

You have a face that was made to smile.

For a year and a half now you’ve been content with just about everything. Smiles open so naturally and easily between your chubby cheeks — reaching up with so much expressive emotion to your shining eyes.

And you’ve created so many different and wonderful smiles.

There’s the happy-stamping-feet-mama-just-got-home smile. The cheeky, can-I-have-a-chocolate smile (with raised eyebrow). The laughing-eyes-closed-in-wild-abandon as I twirl you around around the room smile. The quiet, benevolent smile you reserve for when you sit on a bench and pat the empty space — inviting me to sit next to you.

But one of my most favourite smiles is the mouth-wide-open-eyes-glancing-to-the-right smile when I tickle your belly. The genuine laugh that comes with it melts my heart.

You’re cute, you know. And you play that cuteness well.

You also know exactly what you want and will ask, and ask, and ask until you get it. Or scream. Fall on your bum and scream. You my dear, have an amazing set of lungs. Once in a while I’ll be able to distract you with another object of desire. But more often than not, your persistence wins. At these times, I remind myself that you’re a Taurus (like me) and it makes me proud that you and I are on the same page. It’s also really easy to blame your stubbornness, no… determination, on something ineffable like the stars.

Thankfully you’ve stopped purposefully banging your head against the floor to get attention or to vent your frustrations.

You’re an observer and an expert copier. You can watch me or your sister do something just once, and will role play that action again and again on your own. Your independence is lovely.

Your favourite games right now are mail delivery service, superman, zombie and pirate. You have no idea how cute it is to see you say yarrrrrrgh and swing your arm around like a pirate. Or how creepy it is when you groan like a zombie and attack my face for brains (and then while I’m helpless on the ground, my chest for “num-num”).

So, add your determination to a love of mimicry and its clear why you’ve become an expert signer. Honestly, I just have to show you a sign once and you’ll use it every time. Without prompting you’ll sign butter, cracker, chocolate, water, milk, book, baby, more, all-done, and cookies to name a few. And you’re slowly speaking more and more, saying hotdog, doctor, auto, Allah, walrus, and a slew of animal noises in the cutest little baby voice ever. Don’t forget all of your made up words, like BOP! for stop, and dub-dub for butter.

I know you can’t wait to talk to me — because when we’re not going back and forth with baby gibberish, you take moments to construct real sentences. Ok, so far they just consist of, “Um… mama, dey-da” — but that tells me you’re excited to start expressing all of the amazing things going on in your mind.

My dear, you are an amazing baby.You sing the Doctor Who theme and dance to classic Motown. You love drawing and painting. You snuggle and are easy-going. When another toddler steals your toy you very gently push out your hand toward them — like saying, “noooooo, stooooop.” But you don’t hit and you always sign “sorry” when you’ve hurt someone. You love entertaining us with goof-ball antics — like putting a bowl on your head and acting like an alien, or chasing us around the room and begging me to jump out and scare you.

But you miss me terribly now that I’m at work. And I miss you too. I can’t seem to stop talking about you.

My dear, I can’t wait for you to grow up, even though I want you to remain the cute baby that you are. But I know we’re going to have so much more fun together in the coming months and years. God willing there will be many many more to come.

I love you.