Kate is 15 months old

Dear Kate,
You’re growing up so fast! It’s such a bittersweet feeling; with your baby sister coming soon, it’s nice that you’re more communicative and able to do things for yourself, but you’re still my baby, and it’s hard to see that stage slipping away more and more. Here’s what you’ve been up to over the past month:
  • In top news, you've grown a lot of hair over the past few weeks! It's really thickening up, but it's so light colored it's hard to see. You'll have braids and pigtails in no time. You really can't be called bald anymore!
  • You’re an ACTIVE girl. You always have been, but now that Mama’s 8 months pregnant, it’s getting harder and harder to keep up with you! You are our little adventurer who currently has a poison ivy rash, fire ant bites swelling up your feet, and a nasty bruise on your cheek. I joke that our house should be bubble wrapped!
  • You can see up onto the countertops now, and you whine for things you see up there. Sometimes you can reach them! You try to climb onto the couch or over gates, but you (thankfully) can’t do it yet.
  • You still love to read books. We keep a basket of a few board books in the living room, and you frequently will go get a book, bring it to someone, then turn around and sit in their lap to be read to. As soon as the book is through, you jump up to get another book. You know several of the books in our living room SO well! You anticipate certain pages and the rituals we do for them. Right now, though, your favorite book is your “Words” book that has a million photographs of everyday things. You point to each one and either say the word or ask, “This?” You will look at that book for a 20 minutes at a time. 
  • At the beginning of the month, you were going through a major “mommy” phase, and you weren’t thrilled to go to other people. Even when we were at home, you only wanted to be held, and you wanted me to be standing up while holding you. I’m glad you got over that. You’re heavy!! You still have a hard time in the nursery at church, and it breaks my heart to leave you when you’re so upset.
  • You can identify your head, feet, eyes, teeth, bellybutton, and sometimes nose. 
  • Speaking of bellybuttons, you love to poke mine. It sticks out a ton when I’m pregnant! I talk to you about baby Caroline coming soon, and I tell you to tell her “hi.” You’ve gotten to the point now where every time you see my belly uncovered, you wave to it! It cracks me up. 
  • You have no clue what I’m talking about when I tell you there’s a baby in Mommy’s tummy. I don’t know of a way to prepare you for the huge change that’s about to come.
  • We are thankful that you’re such a good sleeper. I don’t mean that you sleep a ton, but when we put you down, you don’t fuss at all. You take one nap per day, and it’s only about an hour and a half. At night you sleep from 6:45/7 to about 7:30 in the morning. (You started sleeping in a bit more when the time changed and your room was so dark in the mornings.)
  • You love your new bedroom! You cried a little when we put you down to sleep for about 3 nights, and then you were fine. I think you’re really proud of your new room. You love to be in there!
  • You’re getting a few new teeth. Your hands are in your mouth constantly again. You enjoy brushing your teeth, and you usually do okay when I brush them “for real.”
  • You eat a lot. I think it’s probably because you’re so active... you need the extra calories! We feed you three main meals and a couple of snacks per day. You don’t turn your nose up at ANYTHING we give you. I feel like you eat the same things all the time, but it doesn’t seem to bother you. You eat well with your hands, and you will let us spoon feed you again, too. (You went through a phase when you did not like that so much.) You like to play with an extra spoon during meals, but you’re not coordinated enough to actually use it yet. You still get one bottle at bedtime to be sure you're getting enough milk for the day, but I'll ask at your doctor's appointment on Friday how to get rid of that. I know you're too old to have a bottle!
  • You are saying many new words! Well, you’re at least saying the first sounds of these words, and you’re consistently naming these things: Dada, dog, cat, balloon, fan, fish, bird, kite, car, go, ball, this, banana, and done. You’ve said Mama (and meant it) a few times. I’m sure there are more words that I’m not thinking of. You ask “This?” about a million times a day. You want to know the name of everything!
  • You seem to be very observant. Your latest “obsession” has been stars. (Add it to the ever growing list which already included dogs, fans, and balloons.) You have a light up turtle that shines stars on the ceiling, and now you notice them everywhere. Even the tiniest star does not go unnoticed by you. I’ve learned when you ask, “This?” to look more closely at the object because you're looking at details. For example, you kept asking “This?” and looking at your sippy cup. I kept saying “cup,” but what you were really looking at was the tiny star that decorated the ball on a seal’s nose on the cup. Also, we’ve learned not to discount you too quickly when you say there's a dog or a star or whatever. We were on our way to church a couple of weeks ago, and you started shouting “dog” excitedly over and over. We looked around and didn’t see anything. Daddy said, “No Kate, there’s no dog.” That’s when I finally spotted it. Way up high, half obscured by a pole or something, was a billboard with a photo of a dog catching a frisbee. How do you see these things?? 
  • This is your new thing this week: You think it’s fun to get a big sip of water or milk then spit it out everywhere. Yep, real fun.
Oh, Kate, you have personality PLUS! You keep us laughing at the cute things you do. You are so loved, and we’re praying for you to transition well as you become a big sister very soon. We have 7 weeks (or less) of just being a family of three...
We love you, Little One.
Mama and Daddy

Weight: 23 lb., 10 oz. (50-75%)
Length: 31 in. (75-90%)
Clothes: 12-18 months, 18-24 months, and a few 24 months things (depending on the brand!)
Diaper size: 4
Sleep: 6:45/7 pm - 7/7:30 am
Nap: One a day - 12pm to 1:30ish
Teeth: 8 completely through, several more on their way, a couple poking through now

You point to every dog in the book, How do Dinosaurs Love Their Dogs? (Yolen).
"Eating" your plastic corn-on-the-cob. You'd make your corn-farming great grandparents proud!
Which page is her favorite in Brown Bear Brown Bear (Martin)? You guessed it. The dog page.
Laughing and bouncing around on the chair when I was trying to get the elephant pose. Just sit still for two seconds, please!!
Look how nicely your elephant sits for the camera!
Her response to, "Kate, where's your nose?" Ha ha!!
This is what our living room looks like on any given day. Toys everywhere! We pick up after she goes to bed. Usually.