Stella is really growing up. She likes to brush her hair, she’s got a penchant for ‘shoesh’ – her own and others’ – and likes to put on “coves”, trying on hats (anything that can be put on one’s head makes a very suitable hat), sticking trousers on her head and pushing her little legs into the sleeves of a jumper.
The baby who didn’t like milk has grown up into a hungry little person who scoffs most of what is put in front of her. If she’s upstairs exploring (taking all of her clothes out of the drawers), a surefire way to get her to come downstairs is to let her know there is food in the offing. Meals or ‘nack’s, or even just seeing someone go into the kitchen prompt her to shout “Eat! Eat!” and run for the high chair. When she has finished her drink or snack, she will bring you her empty bowl or cup, saying “ere go”.
Whenever she hears music play, she dances. Rocking from side to side is her signature move, although she is branching out a bit. She watched my Zumba DVD for a while, then held onto the table to bob up and down on one leg.
Stella has recently discovered a love of escalators. She is delighted by any opportunity to ride one. Last time we visited a local shop I had to take her down and then back up again when she glimpsed one out of the corner of her eye and made a beeline for it. My little daredevil 😉
She loves making funny faces, scrunching up her face then raising her eyebrows and making an ‘oo’ shape with her mouth. When I make faces at her she laughs and gives me a clap.
She has been saying ‘appy’ for a while – none of us are really sure what it means, but most of the time she is pretty happy. There are times though where she finds it all a bit too much. If she has her little plans scuppered by a closed door or a toy that is just out of reach, she throws herself on the floor face down for a good cry. At times like these, Jet has taken to making the helpful suggestion, “Don’t have a paddy about it!” He also likes to explain to anyone who will listen that “Stella is in a barrel of laughs.”
One thing that really upsets her is a cubicle. She really hates cubicles! Taking her into a public toilet or changing room is not much fun at all.
Unlike her fearless brother, she pays close attention to lots of instructions and knows that radiators, cups of tea and running water can be ‘ot’ and that some things are not to be touched, such as the plug sockets. She points at these, saying ‘ouch’ and ‘no’. The bin, with its many temptations, elicits the word ‘yuck’, even as she peers nosily in, as does the toilet.
She has a lovely new doll whom she enjoys putting to bed, giving her the little teddy and dumping a blanket on Kitty fairly unceremoniously. She sleeps with her pink rabbit, Doggins (Moggins, Bubbins, Doggins… spotting the pattern?), her lovely crochet fox, Kitty and her favourite, Peppa. We hardly ever watch Peppa Pig, but when she unwrapped her at Christmas, she recognised her straight away, and they are inseparable now.
Jet is her hero and she follows him around, calling his name clearly when he is out of sight. After he has been dropped off at nursery, she says ‘Jet gone’. She loves it when he plays with her – they run up and down the room and sometimes tickle each other. He likes to show her how to do things and bosses her about, calling her Missis. If she sees a bare piece of skin, she will blow a raspberry on it, making everyone laugh. In an effort to impress Jet, she says ‘bum bum poo’.
When asked, Stella can point to her mouth, eyes, ears and nose, which is obviously for pressing and saying ‘beep’, or rubbing with mine in an eskimo kiss. Sometimes we find the cat in her bed when it’s time to go to sleep. Stella likes to put her face close enough for Juno’s whiskers to tickle her face, and is really gentle with her. I leave them in the cot together until Juno gets bored of having her ears fondled, her eyes poked and her nose beeped, and goes looking for another bed to sleep on.