Anna Stephens is 2!

I can’t believe it’s been 9 months since I’ve written an update on Anna Stephens! When they are still so little, the amount that changes in 1 month, much less 9 months is insane!! So here I am, finally getting around to documenting her 2 year old birthday (which was in January) and some of her milestones in late April, but such is life!

We had a wonderful time celebrating her birthday WEEK in January! Anna Stephens turning 2 felt much more emotional for me than her turning 1. I think because at 1, she was still very much my baby and at 2, she’s much more of a toddler and I know our baby days are behind us, which made me so sad. But, I sure do love watching her grow and learn. What a rollercoaster being a parent is!

For her 2nd birthday (on a Thursday), she woke up to balloons in her crib and Luke and I singing happy birthday to her. We made her a special breakfast for her to eat on her birthday plate (her favorite part was the whipped cream, of course) and then she went to school with cookies in tow (which she was SO excited about). She had a blast celebrating with her buds at school. They play the most fun birthday song for all the kids’ birthdays and we got hilarious videos of her dancing around and having the time of her life.

After school, Luke and I took her to Southpark to Build a Bear so she could make her own special birthday bear! We put the birthday song in it and 3 months later, she still loves her bear so much. We had chickfila for dinner, played on the playground outside of the mall, and then picked up ice cream at Jeni’s before heading home.

On Saturday, we had a small flower themed birthday party at our house with family + the Bolands and Lindsey. Anna Stephens had loads of fun with Wyatt … they played in a ball pit, chased each other around, and of course enjoyed cupcakes. She loved opening her presents and being with her people.

As I’m writing this, Anna Stephens is 27 months old. She is 35lbs, 36″ tall (99th percentile for both) and in mostly 3T clothes. She is strong, hilarious, and just beautiful. Her big blue eyes, chubby cheeks (don’t ever want those to go away!!), and her long hair with curls at the end just MELT me! She LOVES to make people laugh, dance in front of the mirror and shake her booty, run, jump, read books and play pretend. Her vocabulary is amazing and she communicates very well. She remembers everything and is now singing songs all of the time. If she hears it once, she’s pretty much got it. I think Ms. Rachel has a lot to do with that. Ms. Rachel on YouTube is the only thing she wants to watch and we’ll find her saying things Ms. Rachel says to us or to her stuffed animals or even just to herself! She’ll say, for example,  “Ok, baby Joy (her bitty baby), do you want to crawl with me on the ground like a worm? … Ok, let’s do it! … Wow, great job! (While clapping her hands). It’s hilarious and so cute.

Her favorite songs right now are Itsy Bitsy Spider, Wheels on The Bus, My God is So Big, The Butterfly Song, I’m a Little Teapot, ABCs, Row Row Row your Boat, Old McDonald, and countless other little ones that Ms. Rachel sings.

She is very ready to potty train and pee pees on the potty often. Her taking off her diaper whenever she pleases is about to drive me insane. So the goal is to start formally potty training in the next month or so! Ahhh.

She is definitely having her fair share of big emotions and melt downs. I know it is very developmentally normal, but she knows what she wants and will demand it or get very upset if we don’t give her what she wants or delay it. We are all just figuring out this stage together! We have been working on patience, apologizing, and using kind words. These moments of frustration, especially, push Luke and I to the Lord and make us very aware of our own shortcomings and need for wisdom. I’m so thankful that the Lord gives us abundant grace in parenting and helps us point Anna Stephens to Him in those moments. I am amazed by how children process thoughts about God. It’s so humbling and precious. She understands (on a 2 year old level) that she makes “sad choices” sometimes and that we call those sins and that Jesus died on the cross for our sins and rose again so that we can have a relationship with God. She loves to say “JESUS IS ALIVE!” and celebrating Holy Week and Easter with her was amazing because of how much she absorbed.

A few of my favorite little things right now: 

Our mantra of saying “how much does mama love you?” SO BIG! “how much does daddy love you? SO BIG! “How much does God love you?” EVEN BIGGER!

Her night time routine – even though she definitely can draw it out – we love reading her 1 or 2 books, praying and then once the lights are out, she always insists on listening to “wheels on the bus” and “my God is so Big” on my phone. Then she will say “mama – rock me just a little bit – then my crib!” but recently I’ve started saying after the 2 songs “Who is ready to be tucked in!?” and she’ll say “ME!” and then I’ll put her in the crib, where she ALWAYS reminds me to put her on her tummy, and then tuck her in with her blanket, pillows and stuffed animals and then we exchange “sweet dreams” and/or “I love you”

She has started saying “I love you,” “I’m so happy to see you,” “how was your day?,” and “You ok, ___?” unprompted. She’ll also randomly say “I love you mama!” while hugging me real tight and patting my back and I can’t handle the sweetness (even if she’s trying to manipulate me sometimes lol).

She loves to play with my hair and say “mama – I’m going to give you a pony tail!!”

She now says her full name with confidence! 🙂

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