little miss personality

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3 and is weird, guys.  Natalie is overflowing with personality these days, which means there is never a dull moment in our house.  Natalie is either bossing us around, singing songs, dancing along with Caillou or Gabba, playing waitress, painting, or jumping frantically on her trampoline.  Oh, or having a complete meltdown over something like us taking her ponytail out before both feet are actually in the bathwater.

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She usually loves having her picture taken lately.  She’ll make a kissy/pouty face and say “Ooooh, look at me!  I’m a movie star!” while pretending to snap pictures on her own camera.

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She is constantly battling with herself over becoming a “big girl.”  She loves to play “Momma,” and calls us her “little ones.”  She’ll go back and forth between exclaiming that she’s a big girl and begging to be rocked “like a little baby.”  She had a sip of my coffee this past weekend, and couldn’t wait to tell us, “I’m a big girl now.  Not a little baby, a big girl who drinks coffee.  But I still use the baby swings.”

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We’re not without battles at 3, though.  Bedtime has become our daily nightmare, complete with screaming, crying, flailing, and general refusal to sleep on the part of our stubborn toddler.  Leaving any playground is always a gamble–will she cause a scene that makes passersby consider calling child protective services, or will she just skip over to the car with us?  What new and hellish ways will she think of next to make me leave daycare drop-off overcome with guilt?  Plus the daily battles over milk or water, Caillou or Electric Company, one bedtime story or two, etc.

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She also finds new ways to make us proud and amazed at how much she has grown.  She loves to order for herself at restaurants (“Mac and cheese, please!”), and is getting so much better at sharing.  She is thoughtful (“Let’s paint a picture for daddy, okay?!”) and loves snuggling.  Every night before bed she begs for “one more kiss,” and her favorite thing to do is Skype with her grandparents.  She beams when we give in to her playtime demands (“Sit in a circle!”  “Clap your hands!” “Now you be the teacher!”), and mimics everything we do.  Lately she’s been flipping her hair like she’s blow-drying it, like me, and loves board games like daddy.

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This kid.  She’s too much.

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