Just as the memories of Lilly’s Terrible Twos were fading it was the turn of her little sister to remind us what little toddlers are capable of… and Oh. My. God. She’s a terror at times!
I know this might sound like selective memory, but there is NO WAY Lilly was this mischievious at this age.
Isla is constantly on the go, quite literally into everything… wall plugs, the washing machine, the meter cupboard, anything that stays still for more than a second! And as soon as you’re clearing up one mess she has made, she is busy making another elsewhere, emptying out boxes, ripping pages out of books or putting things she shouldn’t into the bin!
Unlike Lilly at the same age, Isla is a real little daredevil. She likes to try bumping her way down the stairs on her bum, and if we go to the park, she wants to go on the biggest slides (although we don’t let her!) and if she had a chance she’d want to try and walk down the slide instead of sitting down to slide on her bottom!
When we’re out walking she doesn’t want to hold hands, doesn’t want her reins, always wants to run off in another direction and definitely has no patience for being strapped into a pushchair / trolley / car seat! (Lilly was the same too). And, she is quick! Once she gets a sniff of an opportunity, she’s off as quick as those little legs will go!
She does lots of shouting and is very bossy to her big sister – always yelling: “LILLY, COME ON”, especially when encouraging Lilly to run around with her, or generally join in with some mischief.
She is capable of throwing herself on the floor in a tantrum, going stiff like a board when you try to strap her into her pushchair or purposely banging her own head on a mirror, floor or (more wisely) on the sofa when annoyed, or told she can’t so something. We can’t leave pencils or pens out anywhere in the house because she will go and draw on the walls or furniture. If she is left unsupervised with a drink for a minute she will go and pour it all out over the floor / sofa / floor. If she gets half a chance she will climb into Eve’s moses basket or pram when she’s not there. She sometimes goes and locks herself in the cupboard under the stairs and thinks its very funny (even though its pitch black in there!). She is obsessed with cleaning her teeth so if the toothbrushes are left out she will climb up on her stand to get them then sit on the floor squeezing out all the paste and trying to brush her teeth.
At the same time, she is quite wary of strangers – especially men - she had a total breakdown when I took her into work to meet my colleagues on my last day – sobbing inconsolably!, and she hates anyone leaving, especially mummy or daddy, even if it is only to go upstairs to the toilet. She is also terrified of the sound of the hoover or any sudden noises like motorbikes, drilling and other people mowing their lawns.
Basically, she is a typical toddler – the type you read about all the time. We know it’s totally normal, we know its totally understandable, but bloody hell… she is hard work sometimes!
Of course Lilly was equally hard work at this age. But in a slightly different way. Lilly was always very demanding – for example she would scream the place down if 12.05pm clicked around and lunch had not arrived, when she was used to it at 12. If she wanted something and didn’t get it immediately, there was world war three! And we often had battles at bedtime with Lilly crying until she’d almost make herself sick rather than ever give in and GO TO SLEEP! (She is MUCH better now, of course)
Sleep wise, so far (touching wood) Isla is a very good girl. She will usually chat away for a while at bedtime, and recently she has taken to throwing her pillow out over and over and calling Lilly to get it for her, but generally she is very good at going to bed and settling down. She almost always sleeps all night, from 6.30pm until at least 6am, sometimes later if Lilly doesn’t wake her up. If she is disturbed in the night it is usually bad dreams, she rarely actually wakes up from them and usually settles herself back.
Her language skills are getting better everyday, she can put lots of basic sentences together & can now use words to get across most of the things she wants. The pronunciation of some of these being a little unique, favourites including: “More Adda Doiche” (more apple juice) “Evie Fying!” (Eve’s crying) and “worky chongs!” which means make the songs work, i.e put some music on. She loves to join in conversations and if you ask her questions she will often answer with a “yes!” or a solemn nod of her head. However, if Lilly asks her a question e.g what did you dream about last night Isla? the answer is often “errrr, Biccie!”
She is very close to her big sister & doesn’t like it when Lilly goes to “nurshey” (nursery). I think it will be hard on her when Lilly goes to school because at the moment she only goes to nursery two afternoons a week. They love playing together & Lilly will get Isla involved in very intricate imaginative games.
Isla loves music and dancing, she seems to have quite good rythm! And her current obsession is the CBeebies programme NumTums, which she sings along to and dances very enthusiastically – very funny to watch. Her other favourite programmes Mio Mao and Baby Jake have taken a backseat since NumTums came along! She can now sing her own version Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and a couple of other songs, not all the words are right but the basic sounds are there, very cute. She loves looking at photo albums of the family and loves stories.
Unfortunately Isla is also going through a little phase of hitting, Lilly being her main target. There isn’t much force behind it, but even so… Sometimes she lashes out because Lilly has a toy she wants, or won’t share, sometimes it is a completely unprovoked attack! To Lilly’s credit she never retaliates, but she is capable of falling to the floor, Premiership footballer style whilst yelling: “Isla hit me, like, 40 times!” We always tell Isla that hitting is naughty and that she should be gentle with her sister, and we have recently introduced the Naughty Spot. It works occasionally, but sometimes when you are warning Isla to be good she will look at you and say, hopefully, ”Naughty spot?”, which kind of takes away the point!
I’ve noticed recently that Isla’s imagination is really developing. She has started playing with cuddly toys and acting out little games with them. The other day she spent ages tucking up a teddy into Eve’s bouncy chair and asking him if he was ok, gorgeous. She also likes putting toys on the changing mat and pretending to change their nappies. And of course she joins in with the games Lilly plays with her very enthusiastically - the pair of them are completely mad together, dancing or running about squealing with laughter.
Isla is also very accident prone because of her mischieviousness, she seems to have a constant bruise on her head and is always falling over somehow or other. She is also too little to ever learn from her mistakes and within seconds of having hurt herself she will be back climbing on the thing she just fell off.
All in all she keeps us constantly on our toes, but she is just so fabulous. She is so much fun and so hilarious to watch. She is such a clever little thing but so mischievious. When you are trying to tell her off you have to hold back a smile – especially difficult when she is sitting on the Naughty Spot looking chuffed to pieces with herself!
Toddlers are such hard work, but they’re just brilliant, aren’t they?