You are a week off ten months as I write this.
Oh, so so much has happened since I wrote your last letter.
Oh do not worry; you are still as cute as ever. Perhaps even more so. If that is even possible.
Whom am I kidding it is very possible.
Who knew so much personality and cuteness could come in such a little package.
You bring infinite joy into our lives.
Daddy and I are still pinching ourselves about how lucky we are to know you.
The best part is, we get to be your parents, and you are our beautiful baby girl.
We have just spent our first Christmas together, and it was lovely.
Watching you open your presents was by far the best part. Even though you did not understand, and were often more fascinated with the ribbons and wrapping, than the actual gift.
You have grown so big, and learned so much over the last five or so months.
A lot has changed for all of us.
I have returned to work a couple of days a week, and sometimes I wish I could push the train to make it go faster. I get so excited as it pulls into the station, because I know that is where you will be waiting.
For almost every morning and every afternoon since I have returned to work, you and daddy walk me to and from the train. And often in the afternoons, on our way home, we go to the park beside our little townhouse for a family play.
We all take turns on the swings, the slippery-dip, walking over the rickety bridge and the sea sore.
You alternate between loving the red steering wheel on the first landing, and the norts and crosses pivot game at the other end.
Daddy loves staying home with you, and taking you on adventures.
Sometimes you go to visit grandma and grandpa for lunch, while other times you go to the shops, the park, or just a walk in the pram.
Every Friday morning you go to story time at the library, where you meet your friends.
Daddy says you have no interest in the books, and occasionally join in with the songs, but only the good bits where you get to be lifted up and down during “The Grand Old Duke of York”.
While Sometimes I take you on the train and we go into the city, or to the shopping mall, and even once, we met Grandma and the sisters for coffee.
However, whatever we do, you love being out and about, and seeing all the people.
I put you in a carrier, so you are close to me, while we walk.
You love to hold my cane, so we take turns. Sometimes I hold it, sometimes when we are sitting, you hold it, and sometimes we share, and hold it together.
You are such a good helper.
Everybody who sees you cannot help but smile, because you are adorable.
Those eyes of yours have definitely stayed blue, just like your daddy, grandpa, daddy’s sisters, and many of your big cousins.
They are inquisitive, sparkly, bright, and happy.
Your hair is light brown, and straight like daddies.
Everybody tells me you look just like him.
Now where to start with all the things you can do?
First, you learned to roll over, then sit up, now crawl, and climb.
At first, you used to only roll to the right, but now you can go any way you like. Sometimes you roll in circles.
We do not play on mummy’s bed as often now, because daddy and I worry you might fall off.
However sometimes we still lay down together in the afternoon for a cosy nap.
When you learned to sit up, you were a bit wonky at first, and we used to have to put pillows around you, or sit with you cradled in our laps, so you would not fall over.
However now you are such a big strong girl, you can sit up all by yourself no problem.
On the occasions you plop to the side, you give us a look as though you meant to do that. It is so funny.
You are always making us laugh with your antics.
Michael says we are a very smiley family.
When we were talking about it yesterday, he said that he cannot help but smile when you do. Even when we are supposed to be settling you down for the evening.
Sometimes when I am in the shower, I smile just thinking about you.
I always always smile when I hear your happy voice.
You have so many words now, and are an excellent learner. If daddy or I say something, you are very good at repeating us, and are even beginning to show a certain amount of understanding and context.
One of the activities you love is to sit on our lap and read stories.
Colleen gave you some print/braille books which mummy picked out for you for Christmas. Therefore, we do a lot of reading together.
We take turns, sometimes I read for you, and sometimes you read to me.
You like to lie on the floor and read your books by yourself.
We have the Touch and Feel books, where each page has a different texture for you to explore.
At the moment, you like the soft baby gorilla the best.
You also like to knock over the towers daddy builds for you, empty your wooden puzzles, and play with anything, which makes noise or flashes.
Your favourite toy is the activity table daddy found for you, which has all sorts of buttons, nobs, flippy bits, and things to press, push, and pull.
Along with the bright blue half clamshell pool, we fill up with water on hot sunshiny days.
Oh how you love to splash about in that thing.
Of course, daddy is way too big for it, but he willingly hops in there with you anyway.
I think he loves the pool as much as you do.
Sometimes I will ask him what the best part of his day was, and he will tell me it was swimming with you.
My best part of the day is sitting on the kitchen floor and watching you eat your solid food.
I am so proud of you for being able to feed yourself so well.
You will eat almost anything.
Although I am still trying to figure out what you did with that half a banana I gave you yesterday, because surely you cannot have demolished it completely. However, it is nowhere to be seen or squashed underfoot on the kitchen floor.
You like olives, cherry tomatoes, carrots, pasta, apples, watermelon, toast with coconut oil, butter, avocado, or vegemite, cheese, pears, oranges, soy rusks, balsamic vinegar, cucumber, or anything else mummy or daddy are eating.
We started you on solids around five months or so.
Mummy was so upset with not being able to feed you all by herself, but you were not gaining enough weight, and you were always hungry. Therefore, we started mix feeding with a combination of my milk, formula, and haphazardly introduced different foods into your world.
You are not particularly keen on egg yoke or fish, but we keep trying.
Daddy makes most of your pureed dishes, such as chicken tomato and pasta, yummy lamb and potato, carrots in orange juice, lentils and a thousand vegetables, or pretty much version of what we are having ourselves.
Mummy is the expert porridge maker, and I do your stewed fruits.
Daddy has always preferred to cook savoury, while I like the sweet.
You and I make such a mess in the kitchen that more often than not, we each need to change our clothes or have a bath afterward. When it is hot, we go outside and plonk in the pool together after our meals, because it is easier and more fun that way.
Sometimes you sit in the kitchen with us and watch, while we cook. We always try to explain what we are doing, and ask your thoughts.
I bring my mixing bowl down to your level, and you watch me crack the eggs, sift flour, or pour milk.
You are fascinated with how the honey snakes out of the squeeze top container.
I let you sniff, if not taste all our herbs and spices so you can get a sense of different flavours.
While daddy often hands you ingredients off his bench such as carrot, zucchini, cheese, or a baby bickie.
This week we gave you a vegetable samosa to taste, and you loved it.
All those spices mummy ate when she was pregnant appear to be paying off.
No longer do you drink from my breasts the way you once did.
You weened yourself off over a month ago.
This made me sad, because I enjoyed feeding you from my body, but I understand you are growing up, and it is natural for you to move on.
Now we have cuddles, and you drink from a bottle.
Either daddy or I will give it to you, and although we know you can hold it yourself, most of the time you prefer us to hold it for you. This way you can cup our cheeks, play with your toes, pull my hair, or play with our fingers.
Sometimes you trick mummy by pretending to suck from my nipple, but then you look up and give me the cheekiest smile.
You have the best smile ever!
Actually, you have lots of smiles.
You have the biggest smile where your tongue pokes out, your sniffle smile, which tells mummy you are smiling, your polite smile for strangers, and you’re playing in the park smile.
You can also giggle now. Although mostly daddy makes you giggle because he is so silly. I try, but it does not work as well.
At first, your tickle spot was on your belly, but now it is under your chin.
You hate having your face wiped, or your clothes taken off and on.
You still love being naked baby, and will run away when we try to put your nappy on.
You are such a quick crawler.
At first, you learned to crawl backward, and it was more of a commando crawl on your belly.
Then you slowly began to get the hang of crawling forward.
One of our favourite games as a family is to play chasings under the dining room table.
You have only just learned how to do that.
You follow us everywhere, and sometimes we get in trouble because we did not stop to kiss or play with you on our way passed.
You give the best sloppiest kisses.
Now that you can crawl, sometimes mummy loses you around the house. You are never where I left you, and sometimes you are so quiet, I have to get down on my hands and knees to find you. You are so cheeky, that you do not answer when I call, which is why we bought a pair of silver twinkle bell anklets for you to wear.
We tried putting them on your wrists, but you are so clever, you took them off almost as quickly as we put them on.
Our other favourite family game is bouncing on the lounge.
Daddy started it, by sitting you there one day.
Gradually you have learned to peep over the back of it, climb over the side, reach up and pull yourself from sitting to standing via the front edge, and a whole host of other games.
Sometimes the lounge is a jail, you and daddy need to break free from, while other times we use it as a pirate ship, or just a quiet place to read books, and have cuddles.
Daddy has the best pirate voice ever!
It is so good, that I even make him use it when you are not around.
Since my last letter, you have outgrown the cradle, and no longer sleep next to our bed.
You are in your big girl cot down the hall.
You are so tall and agile; we have had to lower it to the bottom level, just so you cannot climb out. Because we are sure, if you could, you would.
Sleeping is not one of your favourite things. Although you really do need more of that good stuff.
Not because we need a break, but so you can grow, up strong and healthy.
We have turned your car seat from backward facing to frontward facing, and removed the new baby insert.
You still love the car, and we love hearing you chatter to us from your chair.
You are our entire world.
We constantly talk about you, I write about you, people ask about you, and we take a gazillion pictures.
We even took one of you reading a book on the potty a few months back.
We love everything about you, and trust me when I say; the time is slipping by too quickly.
I am almost certain, that by the time I write your next letter, you will be walking.
However in the meantime my tiny love, know that you are our favourite.
We love you Little.