I was talking with Emily (Emily of the frequent and friendly comments that you can read here) and mentioned that Willa has learned how to drink out of a straw.
She said, "you should post about that. That's a big accomplishment."
And I thought, maybe, but dismissed it because, well... what's there to say about drinking out of a straw?
This got me thinking about all of the things she can do now, and how quickly her bag-o-tricks is expanding.
In the beginning I wrote about each new skill. Because, in the beginning, there aren't many tricks to (literally) write home about. Milestones are spaced out like trees on the west Kansas prairie. You can see one on the horizon, but it's many miles until you actually get there. Rolling over is like that, teething is like that. Crawling felt like reaching the Rocky mountains. A few good nights sleep back to back are more like trees in the Arctic - they might exist, but you hate to even hope for that.
And now we're in the metaphorical Northern Michigan woods of mad skills. New things pop up every day.
Willa is playing peek-a-boo now. She uses her own hands, and thinks you can't see her ensuring that you're paying attention by looking between a crack between her thumb and finger.
She chases the dogs. They let her catch them. She embraces Greta with such joy that you can almost see the dog's reflection in her grin.
She howls at Arlo - and let's her lips stay in a perfect "O" long after the sound is gone.
She knows her fun stuff is in her room. She carries the fun all over the house leaving bits of fun in the shape of small plastic ducks, a toy saxophone, books, her shoes...
She is starting to run. That experiment was cut short by her head meeting the door jam.
She plays hide and seek with me, shrieking when I find her. Because that's what I do when she finds me.
She's starting to use a fork and spoon. She puts the spoon on her high chair tray and then puts a piece of food on the spoon. She uses mostly her left hand and lifts the spoon in a way I didn't know possible to her mouth.
She tickles the dogs feet. She is undeterred by the fact that they do not laugh.
She looms over me to tickle my stomach and pauses to look at me as if to say, "oh yes I will, here I come!"
Willa sings vowels to music. This morning there was a duet of "I Love Trash" with her and Oscar the Grouch.
She roars at Tigers we find at YouTube and laughs at laughing babies.
She calls all of the animals in the day-care animal book "ducks" according to Tammy, one of her teachers. I know "DAC" is not duck, but more of something that she means, "hey, look at that." "DUK" is duck. There is a small difference.
She points at things and people with both hands. We like to say "Who da man, Willa?" and we all laugh when she points at someone.
She won't leave the dog bowls alone, and Internet, I confess my daughter has eaten dog food on the occasion that mom and dad were too slow to catch her. Amends have been made.
Willa climbed up the blue steps of the playground equipment of the nearby school and sat herself down on the tiny baby slide. And nudged herself little by little until she was sliding.
She is getting more teeth, but we have less access to view progress because of her excellent jaw strength and know how of current teeth.
She points to Jim in photos and in person and sings, "Daa..... (long pause) Deeee." She looks for him around the house and yard singing the same way.
She lifts her chin and turns her head to the side, grinning when she's proud of her self.
I know that from here on out development happens at warp speed. In a few months I'll forget to mention that she learned 5 new words in one day. Jim and I were going through old posts here last night and I told him that I can look at a photo of her from February and have a difficult time thinking that she looks any different now. I can go to her crib and gasp at how big she is and how much hair has sprouted. I'm very glad that I've captured moments in time here since October, as it's crazy to think that all of this walking and babbling and dog-hugging wasn't happening only a short time ago.