I have to admit, my daughter is only at the beginning phase of toddlerhood. However, I'm already racking up a whole list of toddler life moments I will never forget. From the potty training fails to the strong opinions they latch onto, toddlers are a whole different ballgame when compared to newborn life. They try your patience in ways you didn't think were possible, but they also impress you and leave you a little awestruck that they could figure out such advanced things (like opening all the lotion bottles and dumping them onto the bathroom floor).
So far in early toddlerhood, my daughter has mastered standing in the potty and lurking awkwardly at the playground. But she's also starting to figure out how to "cook" and "clean," which can only be good signs of what's to come eventually, right? We've had some big old tantrums but, as a truly awesome mom, I've learned to manage them by bribing her with sugar. Hey, I won't judge if you won't, deal?
All joking aside, toddlers can either be tiny terrors or the most delightful little sidekicks. It takes a whole lot of patience to run the gamut between those two day in and day out. In the meantime, at least we're all building tons of toddler memories we'll look back on (mostly) fondly when they're grown up and too busy painting their nails or looking at Snapchat to hang out with us!
My daughter woke up on her first birthday with opinions. Serious opinions about what she wants and when. Thankfully she mastered a very stern head shake to indicate what she doesn't want, because a serious lack of vocabulary kept me from understanding what it was she did want for quite a while. I will never forget the time I taught her how to use sign language for more and she hasn't stopped signing for more since!
Tantrums, Especially The Public Ones
Oh, toddler tantrums. We had our most dramatic one in the middle of a two hour plane ride stuck in the middle seat with a not-yet-2-year-old lap child. Classic! We've had a whole slew of narrow misses in the grocery store check out line as well, but thank goodness for all those treats they conveniently put in those aisles! We'd be lost without them! #MomFail
Reading Books On Their Own
Oh, I love when they start sitting on the floor with a book on their lap. And while we're on the topic of books, when they start bringing you books and then climb into your lap so you can read them a story? Unforgettably adorable.
"Cooking" And "Cleaning"
I love toddlers' obsessions with "cooking" and "cleaning." Whenever my daughter sees the broom, she insists on "sweeping," which really just means banging the broom on the floor and winging it around so everyone is a little worried she's going to take someone's head off. Still, she does make a mean pretend soup most nights while I'm preparing dinner, so she has that going for her.
Learning To Unscrew Caps And Covers
Remember when you could give your baby a tube of lotion and they'd look at it and chew on the end for hours, leaving you in peace at a coffee shop or with enough time to put on makeup? Well, those days are long gone with a toddler.
My daughter now has the ability to unscrew caps and take covers off in record time and cover the bathroom floor in said gooey things before you've even put your foundation on. I will not forget how long it took me to clean that up.
Emptying Wipes And Unraveling Toilet Paper
Toddlers are tiny destructors, so when they see an opening they go for it and repeat until there's nothing left to destroy or they're caught in the act. The first time I realized my daughter could open the pack of wipes herself was, coincidentally, the time I had to try to put them all back in after my daughter had covered the floor in them.
Likewise, the first time I realized she was a tiny destructor was shortly after I left her with a few rolls of toilet paper. Just minutes later, I returned to find the carpet littered with a hundred tiny bits of toilet paper. Mass attrition is their MO.
Learning Please And Thank You
I've been saying "please" and "thank you" to my daughter for basically her whole life now. It's going to be one heck of a toddler moment that I will never forget when she finally uses them herself. Thankfully her satisfied smile when you hand her what she wants is almost thanks enough.
Potty Training Fails
We are currently at the phase of introducing the potty to our daughter and every time we point it out, she tries to climb in it with both feet. Meanwhile, what we have to look forward to doesn't sound that appealing. My sister-in-law recently started potty training my nephew, which has resulted in quite a few instances of poo being spread on the walls. Yuck.
Enduring Playground Life
The playground is the holy grail for toddlers. My daughter can see a slide from blocks away and shouts about until she's sliding down it. However, playgrounds also provide so many hilarious, terrifying, and awkward moments for toddlers. The first time my daughter went down the big slide she flung out the bottom so fast she fell flat on her face (in front of a whole lot of other moms, I might add).
She's also been known to walk up to big kids and just stand there staring, wishing they could be friends. But my favorite playground moment she's had as a toddler has to be the other day when she watched a kid walking along the edging of the playground area sort of balancing his way along. She decided she was going to do the same and practiced until she could do it.