People have asked me since Evie was born whether it's "so different" to have a girl. Until very recently, my answer was no, as they really haven't been so different. Evie is wild like her brother, climbs on everything, never sits still, is a messy eater, loves to play with trucks and make truck noises, and counts "tractor," "truck," and "fire truck" among her very first words. And when she got two baby dolls for her birthday/Christmas, she didn't seem too interested...until now. In the past month, she has developed an intense attachment to her two babies. One--Auntie Pastry (named by Charlie)--sleeps with Evie in her crib. When we go into Evie's room, the first thing she does is reach her hands through the bars of her crib and pull out her blankie, her paci, and Auntie Pastry. The second baby--Bayba (named by Evie)--lives in her doll stroller. The first thing Evie does when she comes downstairs is run over to her stroller and check on Bayba to make sure she is still (not) breathing. Evie carries Bayba just about everywhere. One day, we had to take her with us to the store, the park, and everywhere else we went. Sweet Bayba even had some hair-raising trips down the slide!
Evie is really sweet with her dolls and especially loves to hug them and say "awwwww." (She really loves to hug anyone, and always says the sweetest "awwww" when she does. It's her way of notifying all around that she is doing something super cute and sweet. :) I realized how different this was from Charlie when I was filling out Evie's ages and stages questionnaire. There is a question on there about whether your child hugs dolls or stuffed animals. For Evie, this was an easy "yes." But I remembered that when I was filling out the same form for Charlie, I had to go find a stuffed animal and teach him how to hug it. He was not terribly interested in the whole affair. :)
Here is Evie with Bayba. And for those other "first-time moms" out there, Evie has some parenting lessons:
1. Take your baby for a stroll every day.
2. It helps if you look fashionable while doing so.
3. If your baby somehow makes it out of the stroller, you need to find a way to get her back in. This isn't always easy. But a surefire way to do it is to raise her above your head...
...and just body slam her in.
4. Babies do get thirsty, so make sure to keep a teacup in her stroller at all times.
5. Babies enjoy jumping on the couch with you, but be sure to support their heads.
6. Sometimes it's nice to just relax with your baby and chat for a minute.
7. If she gets unruly, however, you may need to climb on top of her and restrain her.
[No advice here, just a cute picture.]
8. If you need to use one of your arms while holding your baby, just grasp her clothes with the other hand.
9. Always keep a blanket handy.
10. Ahh, all ready for bed. If you want your baby to sleep through the night, make sure she is a doll.
11. And finally, just because you're a mommy doesn't mean you can't have fun! Some moms really enjoy cramming themselves into their babies' strollers and then sobbing when they can't get out.
[Side note: When Evie started walking around 9-10 months, we took to calling her "giant baby" because with her barely-there hair and big, babyish features, she looked just like a giant King Kong-style baby when she would plow through Charlie's train/truck cities, lego buildings, block towers, and other pretend scenes. (It was also a sure-fire way to get Charlie to laugh at the destruction and chaos rather than get too frustrated; he loves to refer to her as "giant baby." :) She really looks like a giant baby in this stroller!]
The interest in babies and dolls is definitely the biggest difference I've seen between Charlie and Evie, but there are others as well. Evie actually enjoys getting dressed, has started picking out her shoes already, and is trying her best to figure out how to put them on (I love to see her little foot pointed out to her shoe), whereas Charlie still has no interest in putting on his own shoes and clothes. Evie actually enjoys building block towers just for fun, whereas Charlie loves to build them, but for the sole purpose of knocking them down. And while Charlie's favorite word at this age was "big truck," Evie's is "thank you!" It's fun to see these differences emerge. I love both of these funny little personalities!