Happy monthly birthday, beanie! Believe it or not, I actually love sitting down to write you these letters once a month because it gives me a chance to reflect on the person you're growing up to be. You are changing so much these days. If I didn't have the proof in words and pictures, the length of your hair or the wild expressions you make would float off into my distant memory. Call me a sap for re-reading and reminiscing about our memories, but I love to remember where we've been while celebrating the present day.
Take for example, your ever-evolving vocabulary. Just a few weeks ago, you'd respond with "um, sure!" every time we asked you a question. "Tory, do you want toast for breakfast?" "Um, sure" you'd respond and it was just the cutest thing ever. I told Daddy that I needed to capture you saying it on video because the tone of your high-pitched voice when you excitedly responded to my question made me laugh every time. Did I ever capture "um, sure!" on video? No, and one day you started to respond with "okay" instead. It broke my heart a little because I couldn't get you to say it again. Today, I can hear you speak those words in my mind, but one day that memory will fade. That's why I love these letters. I love our home videos. I love the thousands of photos we have of you on file because you change so quickly and while I love the person you're becoming, I miss who you were just yesterday.
If I had to sum of this month in a few words, it would be: LANGUAGE EXPLOSION. This month, you reached 100 words of audible vocabulary which I think is really exciting. You're now way past that number. You say so many things these days, I stopped recording your words because there's just too many to count. For the most part, you speak fairly clearly and most people can understand what you're communicating. Sometimes, there's a few words I don't quite understand and you just repeat them over and over like, "come on, mom, catch up already." Names were a big development this month -- you remember friends and family member's names and talk about them days after you've seen them last. Actually, I'm fairly impressed by your memory as a whole this month. We went to the zoo a few times and you were able to recite the animals you saw (giraffe, monkey, penguin, lion) to Daddy and Grandma several days after you visited there. We flew back to Nebraska this month for a quick family reunion and on the plane you held out your hand for a cookie as the flight attendant passed by with snacks and beverages. I had to laugh at this one because you remembered the flight attendant gives you biscotti cookies and you seemed so grown up asking for your own.
You speak about yourself in third person (ie: Tory help) instead of saying "I" or "me" and you often use two-word phrases now. One of my proudest parenting moments happened this month when you regularly started to use "please" and "thank you. in context. You also told me the other day, "dude, don't make a mess" in toddler speak which seriously had me belly laughing. Not that I really want you calling me "dude," but I had to chuckle about the way you repeated one of my commonly-used phrases back at me. I guess now would be the time to start watching what we say around here!
More than anything, you're so fun these days. I adore your endearing personality and I'm so thrilled to spend every single day with you. Thank you for being YOU.