Seriously though, there is something about Cami turning two that makes me realize she really is no longer a baby! There is something sad about that for me. And there is also so much that is so enjoyable about her right now that it compensates for the sadness.
Cami is the biggest snuggle bug. I love how much she cuddles and gallops (literally gallops people) into my arms whenever she sees me. She’s a jealous snuggler too. If Hailee and I are snuggling, Cami crawls right in and, depending on her mood, may try to push Hailee out. If Hailee comes to snuggle when Cami and I are already cuddling, Cami will make disapproving noises and may even try to smack Hailee away.
While Cami finds herself competing with Hailee for attention, as well as turns playing with toys, eating food, playing Ipad, etc, and this can frustrate her at times (often); overall she worships Hailee and will follow her everywhere. Really in the last few months, Cami and Hailee have begun playing together all the time. I love how Hailee will often invite Cami to play with her, either in a fort, in her room, to color, or to play hide and seek. More mornings than not, the girls won’t even ask to watch TV because they are entertained playing together in their playroom.
Cami has been a little slower to pick up words and sentences but Chad and I both feel in the last few months, she has added tons of new words to her vocabulary. Her favorite word continues to be “Nom nom” indicating almost anything edible and yummy. She has also begun to use two word sentences on occasion (e.g. “Want please,” which sounds like “Whan Ease.”) Also, for some reason she didn’t really pick up the word “no” and who would complain about that, right? Instead of no, Cami would always say, “Uh-uh” and shake her head. Well, the last couple weeks, “No!” has become used quite frequently in Cami’s exclamations. The first time she said, “No!” was upon arrival to a swim lesson.
This summer we put Cami in swim lessons, just like we did with Hailee at the same age. Unlike Hailee, who took to swimming like a literal fish to water, Cami, is much less enamored. We have had five lessons and each lesson is full of loud tears for a full 15 minutes. It’s so hard to watch as a mother! But she also loves the pool…when it’s not her lesson. She is always asking to go to the “pool” and loves playing in the water.
I think her lessons traumatized her when they began dunking her underwater the first lesson. I’m hoping over time, the tears will end at swim lessons…because I’m sticking to my guns and my kids MUST become water safe as soon as they are able-sorry Cami, one result you have to deal with from your parent’s losing a baby.
We went on a family vacation last month, for a week, to Oregon and California. During this trip, Cami learned how to climb out of her crib! This began a whole new stage of sleep training that for weeks felt like Cami was really training US and not vice versa. It was horrible. We tried any technique that seemed to work…and ultimately realized we were not being strategic or consistent and that Cami was winning the war. During this time, Hailee was the only one of us not sleep deprived.
It seems like we literally just got Hailee out of our bed (again)(for good) and now we have Cami crawling in at all hours of the night. And we are exhausted from fighting her back to sleep so we often give in…only to get kicked and rolled on for the remainder of the night! Finally, we got a solution from our friends who had the same problem and this solution has actually gotten us some traction. The solution? The CHAIR (ominous music). We brought up a carseat and put it next to Cami’s crib. So when we put Cami down at night, we inform her that she will have to go in the carseat if she gets out of her crib. Then, when Cami almost immediately hops out of the crib when we leave the room, we inform her she made a sad choice and we strap her in the carseat for three to five minutes. She does NOT like this AT ALL and I also hate putting her in it because she’s so tired and sad. After three to five minutes we lovingly unstrap her, hug her, and put her back in the crib, informing her again, that if she gets out, she will have to go in THE CHAIR (dum dum dum). There were a couple nights we had to do this over and over and over. But finally, (fingers crossed) the last week or so, we haven’t had to use the carseat at all. We still have the problem of her waking up at weird hours and climbing into our bed…but we’ll take one victory at a time! At least now we can all go to bed at a pretty consistent and decent hour.
Besides the nighttime drama, Cami just brings so much joy into our lives. I am loving each day as Cami grows and I see more and more of her personality emerge. Yes, she is entering the terrible twos, but she is also entering such a fun stage of life full of adventure, learning, fun, and always lots of snuggles!