wow. we've reached the stage when people ask me how old she is and i'm torn between replying in months and saying almost two. it's really hard to believe that it's almost been that long as the time has seriously flown by. at 22 months she still gets more and more fun by the day and i think this month was a little bit more mellow than the last few.
avery actually spent the majority of the month in a huge 'mommy phase'. i mentioned this in her 21 month post, too but i think it definitely got worse before it got better. she would seriously not allow charlie to do anything for her and it was pretty frustrating at times to both watch and go through. i definitely appreciate the help that he is when he's around, especially being pregnant, and she really wasn't into letting him do anything. one of the most epic moments that i remember from this month is one night after dinner when we asked her if she wanted a piece of pumpkin cake. she said yes (of course) and charlie got her the cake and then picked her up and put her next to him to help her eat it. she started screaming 'no, mommy cake' and when he told her that no, he was going to be the one to help her, she picked the piece of cake off of the plate and threw it across the floor. BUT i think that things have actually gotten better in the last week or so and i'm sort of optimistic that they'll continue that way. she's actually let charlie do more things for her and will even ask for him to come and play or ask about where he is when he's not around. he does have a bunch of travel coming up so we'll see if that will throw her back into only allowing mommy to do anything for her.
despite all of that she's actually in a good mood 90% of the time and is pretty funny to be around. she's picked up a few phrases that i think are so cute and will repeat them since she knows that she gets a pretty favorable reaction out of them. "mommy, look at me" is one that i think she actually picked up from another girl on the playground but uses it all the time now since she knows that i think it's funny. she's also really into saying that things are "cute" now, and when we're out shopping will say "this is cute" for things that she likes. i was at the fabric store picking out fabric for a crib skirt and she repeated that for the fabrics that she liked and then refused to let me buy a few that i actually liked. twice i picked up fabric and put it into the cart and she handed it back to me saying, "mommy, no". like, no, this is hideous and i cannot let you buy it. so the baby's crib skirt was officially picked out by avery. she also chose a lamp for her room in the same way, telling me that one was cute and then rejecting others that i offered her. i love that she really has an opinion about things now.
she still loves the animals and now really plays with each of them individually. she'll play tug-o-war with henry and throw the ball to dunkin. she'll also call for henry now, yelling "hen!" over and over until he comes. i'm always surprised when he does but i think he's slowly learning to appreciate her a bit more. dunkin has become her real buddy this month and she'll request that he come outside and play with her. she hugs all of the animals, except for toby who is just a huge jerk. she does try and play with him though, but it usually ends with him biting her and then her running over to show us her latest injury.
she's been saying "i love you" this month. and not on request but on her own. she's pretty selective about when and who she'll say it to but i think she really gets what it means as it's not something that comes out of her mouth all of the time and usually when she says it there's a hug or kiss to go along. henry was the first to hear it. and i'm pretty sure he didn't appreciate it as much as he should have and my mom was the second. she loves grandma and anytime she hears the facetime ring she'll run over saying "grandma, grandma". she has thrown an 'i love you' to charlie and i as well, which is always amazing to hear. she definitely tells the dogs and cats that she loves them much more often than she tells us, but it's always cute to hear her tell ollie that she loves him for the tenth time as she sits on top of him.
we've done a lot of fall activities this month and i think she's really starting to understand things a lot more. she's really into pumpkins and has loved the few fall decorations that we've put up around the house. she loved carving pumpkins and we've been talking about christmas, too so i think she's excited for that when it finally comes. we got her a leopard costume for halloween, although i'm not sure if she's actually going to wear it as she was not into trying it on at all and basically threw a huge fit when charlie forced her to put it on. so we'll see if she actually dresses us. she may just be avery in a halloween t-shirt for halloween.
i think her eating habits have gotten better this month and i think that the discovery of ketchup has helped a lot with that. she loves ketchup and now dinners that previously were refused are considered gourmet if they're dunked in the right amount of ketchup. she also loves dipping things in salsa and syrup. the only thing that's sort of a pain is that she won't do the actual dipping herself but instead demands that i do it.
she's still going to gymnastics and we actually went a lot this month because we had a bunch of makeup classes to do. she's less interested in participating with the group and much more interested in doing her own thing these days. i really could care less at this point and am really just happy that she's actually doing anything. if she wants to hang on the bar for 5 minutes instead of playing with the balls then i say go for it. i figure she has the rest of her life to listen to rules and do exactly what the teacher is telling her.
she doesn't really watch tv but i've put on an episode of planet earth about 3 times this month and she was so into it. she loves animals, they're her current favorite toy, and is actually really good at identifying them all. after the second time of watching 'pole to pole' she pretty much had it memorized and could tell you what was coming next. charlie watched it the last time with her and she was telling him 'polar bears, caribou, wolf, leopard, shark' before they came on. at this point i'm really loving that animals are her current thing that she's into instead of sesame street or some disney characters. i figure we'll avoid those as long as we can since they really annoy me.
she loves to color and paint and i'm hoping that i can figure out more creative things for her to do as she's really into those things. she also really likes to help cook and bake. she can feed the cats on her own and does not like it if you try and help her at all. if she could open the door to where their food is they'd probably eat ten times a day. she gives dunkin his treat each morning and stands over his food at night to yell at toby if he tries to steal some food.
she's kind and sweet and will give hugs and kisses for no reason. she says "bless you" when anyone sneezes and "sorry" when she bumps into us or the animals. she was carrying her stuffed polar bear up the stairs the other night and kept saying "i got you, i got you", which is what i say to her when i'm carrying her down the stairs. she gives "big hugs", which are totally different from regular hugs and is really into "family hugs" when we all hug. she loves a good family hug and will then usually give kisses to everyone followed by "nosies". she'll help with things when asked, is great at throwing things away, and picking up her toys and books. she still loves to read although she is still really into reading on her own. her favorite books this month are still "clifford's first christmas", "hot fudge", "fox on socks", and "oscar the cat about town". when she reads fox on socks it just sounds like she's saying the f-word over and over again. she could listen to the song "applause" on repeat all day long and can get very demanding in the car when it's not played continuously. she does not like country music but loves christmas music, particularly "jingle bells". she now puts herself to sleep for both bedtime and naps and as much as i'm so proud of her for that i do miss rocking her to sleep. it was always my favorite part of the day.