The other week I text my friends about a baby and toddler show asking if they’d like to go, and got the reply “no thanks – no babies or toddlers here!” Hmmm I thought, I still call Miss Belle a toddler. It got me thinking though. Maybe it’s time to drop the “toddler” description.
No longer a toddler
Miss Belle is three now and so I’ve been used to calling her a toddler for some time. Although yes we are very much past the terrible twos and heading for some serious threenager attitude and wobblers, the word “toddler” just seems to roll off the tongue. But now that I’ve thought about it, I guess she’s no longer a toddler. For one thing she definitely doesn’t toddle. Despite her late walking she’s now caught up with her peers physically. She has a new found energy which has literally upped a few gears in the past few weeks. She dances and prances about all over the house. (We have been known to partake in some Miranda style galloping, naturally). She is what my mum calls “a jumping bean”. She has oceans of energy (sometimes I wish she’d give me a bit of it) and it’s really lovely to see. So yep, definitely not “toddling”. This week something monumental happened. She finally, after about 18 months, bounced on the red ball at Mini Monkeys. Previously this had been deemed “too scary” (because it’s big), but she went for it, and surprise surprise, she loved it.
She’s also talking non stop. Like, I don’t get a minutes peace (well unless Frozen or Bambi is on). Over the past six months she’s embraced imaginative play. She will tell me a monster is coming or we’ll pretend to look for imaginary lizards (recreating that damn Peppa Pig episode where Edmund Elephant’s family are in the desert). Sadly she does still love that Pig, and we will most likely head back to Peppa Pig World next year when Little Man is more into it.
Her likes and dislikes have changed too. Even as a toddler she loved to sit quietly and do puzzles. Santa got her some new ones because we’ve exhausted the ones we’ve got. Yet they’ve barely been touched. She’d much rather be running around or playing imaginatively now.
Like many three year old she now adores Play Doh – the Christmas and Birthday presents which were very well received. She just wasn’t into it last year. Now she loves to make pretend food and make me eat it. I guess that’s another sign, she’s getting older, more creative, more inquisitive.
And the big thing she’s into at the moment is the alphabet. We have a couple of games, and activity book and an app on the iPad which she loves. She’s also learning the days of the week and months of the year. And is starting to fully understand holidays, like Christmas, and yes, Easter. All things very “pre-school” like I guess.
Am I sad to say goodbye to the toddler years?
In a way, yes. I was looking back at photos on my phone of her this time last year and my heart melted. She was fatter in the face, considerably shorter. And proper toddler cute, even if I do sound biased. Now, whilst still adorable and gorgeous to me, she looks more of a little girl. But what a feisty, funny little girl she is. She’s such a character. You can see her mood in her face. Her eyes in particular tell me how she’s feeling, from cheeky to mischievous… if she’s concentrating or scared, they show it all.
So yes although it’s sad to say goodbye to the cute toddler Miss Belle, it’s lovely to see her changing, growing, exploring and learning.
I guess the technical term would be to describe her as a “pre-schooler” now, but it doesn’t roll off the tongue quite so easily, to me at least.
I’ll just stick with little girl for now.
She’ll always be my little girl.