Ayva will be 2.5 at the end of this month. I haven't written much about her lately and so I thought I would jot some things down for posterity and so she knows that even though much of my time is consumed by Livia right now, she is not forgotten.
- Ayva loves clothes, especially dresses. Pink was the only color she wanted to wear for a long time, but thankfully now she has added purple to her repertoire. She loves to wear them with leggings or tights. I prefer the tights because at least she doesn't take them off. If she wears socks, they are off in minutes. Shoes and slippers are also a favorite, whether they are hers or mine. Perhaps once a week she will consent to wearing jeans. She has several pairs of pants that she has never worn because she refuses to even try them on. In short, she is just very girly.
- Peanut butter is one of her favorite "foods". She also likes to eat pasta, mashed potatoes, grapes, and cheese (I guess she is a little French girl after all).
- Lee-va is what Ayva calls her little sister. She really likes to lay down by her, if it's on the floor or in the crib or on her bed. For the most part she is really gentle with Livia. It's so cute to hear her mimic what I say to the baby. "It's ok, Livia". "Hello coo coo bird".
- "We a family" and "I yuv yoo" are things Ayva says often. She likes to cuddle and be "cozy" which, of course, we love. She loves to have both her Mama and Papa playing her. I truly see in her face how much she loves that. We have group hugs often. In the moments when it's just her and I or just her and her Papa, that's when she says, "Just yoo and me" and I think she likes those times too because then we aren't distracted by the baby and can just concentrate on her needs.
- She has a sense of humor already and likes to tease her Mom. I am often surprised by this as I tend to think of humor as something that develops later. A few times I have gotten irritated with her until I realize that she is teasing me! She loves to be tickled and listening to her giggle and laugh is about the best thing in the world.
- Likes to sing, but doesn't want anyone else to sing with her. "Stop, please" is what she says if you deign to join in. Being a first born she can be a bit bossy. I'm sure this will be something we will be working on in the future, especially as Livia gets older. As the oldest in my family, I can relate!
- Loves the creche. She knows all of the kids'names. The taties told me on Wednesday that she is teaching them English as they teach her French.
- Ayva enjoys playing with playdoh and bubbles as well as building houses/beds out of her big Lego blocks for her dolls. She gets lots of hand me down toys from a neighbor lady, including her first Barbie. I am not a fan of Barbies but I let her keep it. She's not very interested in it for the moment. She loves all the Dora stuff she's been given.
- She loves Sleeping Beauty (really all princesses), Dora (in French or English), and Tigger and Pooh.
- Likes to play in her room with the door shut like she's 15 years old already. I wasn't too sure what to think of this at first, but I know that there is nothing dangerous in there and of course I check on her periodically. She's usually just playing with clothes or "reading" books. If I ask her what she's doing she'll say, "I'm jus payin'" (I'm just playing). She loves sleeping on her "big girl bed".
- One of the things that makes my heart so glad is to see Ayva's relationship with her Papa. They are so close. Sometimes I do get a bit jealous, I admit. Her first choice is mostly always her Papa. She runs to him for comfort, to kiss her bobo when she gets hurt. This has certainly helped her cope with having a new sibling in the house and because of that there has been very little acting out on her part. We are all blessed that Henri is able to work at home and often has time to spend with Ayva. Throwing rocks in the sea with Papa. Here she is helping Papa put together her "big girl bed".
- It makes her Mama very happy to see that Ayva likes books. Lately she has been "reading" them all by herself which is a nice quiet time activity that gives her Mama a break. :) She has her little chair and other spots where she takes a book and just pours over the pages looking at the pictures.
- She has a very keen eye for detail. She notices right away if my hair is different or if I have changed my clothes or Livia's. If I happen to put make up on (not too often these days), she comments on it: "You so peely, Mama" (You're so pretty, Mama). It's very hard to sneak things by her. She knows where we are and what we will be approaching when we're in the car.
- She has learned a number of colors, but really only likes pink and purple. She still loves grouping things by color as well (like she does with the crayons). She has a number or plastic plates and bowls and two shelves at her level so that she can help Mama unload her things from the dishwasher. These items are always arranged by color with her favorites (pink and princess ones) front and center. Orange and red are relegated to the back and blue and green are in the middle. It's interesting to watch her spend time arranging things.
- She has shown no real interest in letters yet. Nor numbers for that matter, but she does know 1, 2, 3. If she is misbehaving, she sure doesn't want Mama to get to 3! She does continue to test and push boundaries like any normal toddler and she certainly can unleash her inner drama queen, but for the most part, Ayva is very well behaved.
- We have decided to wait on potty-training until it gets a bit warmer. The ladies at the creche suggested this and we don't see any harm in waiting. She is very aware of all things having to do with this subject and so I hope that she will be ready once we start.
- Ayva is very articulate and has quite a varied vocabulary. She does make cute grammatical mistakes though with prepositions. She'll say she wants to go inside instead of outside or that she's in front of me when she's behind me. I like hearing which pronouns she uses and how she uses them. Some words she usually only says the French word (like merci or cochon for pig) and some she interchanges the languages (please or see poo pay (s'il te plait). I find her language development (English and French) really interesting. I wish I could be a fly on the wall at the creche and hear her talk in French.
Well, that's Ayva in a nutshell right now.