We left our camera at a friend’s house this week, so no pictures tonight—sorry. I’ll try to give you the proverbial “Thousand Word” equivalent, but beware: sappy, doting mama bear is at the keyboard. Consider yourself warned.

Winona and I rode the bike to a neighborhood park other than our own this morning…and it was unofficially but most definitely Toddler Time. Thirteen 18mo-3 year olds (and their parents, who were a different story for a different blog site, but I digress). Thirteen kiddos. Two of them—Nona included—were girls. That seems to be a trend. Anyway, Winona is usually very cautious about entering into any kind of social contracts with folks. Enter party, stand at door, take it in for 10 minutes, make cautious move to comfortable corner, familiar face or tempting toy, fully engaged in party by about 1 hour in…. Similarly, this morning, a well-equipped mom shows up with a mesh bag full of 50+ buckets, shovels and trucks and dumps them out into the sand. Before one could say “Wow-she’s-good-I’m-lucky-I-remembered-to-put-shoes-on-my-kid,” there were 12 toddlers converging on the fun. One held back. That would be NonaLou. She struggled a little with her choice to hang back—stomping her feet back and forth a few times and letting out the beginnings of a “minenominenonomine” diatribe that can only come from the mouths of babes. But she relaxed and watched intently as the other kids played. After a few minutes, she turned and ran to me, sitting 10 feet away and said, “SnuggleMama!” One quick hug and she ran back to the maddening crowd, grabbed a shovel and pail, and plopped herself down next to her New Friend Ian: Son of Mother With Toys—that’s my girl!

In other news...
She loves to sing and now demands to get through her wobbly versions of our Most Oft Repeated Top 10 Songs on her own. (If we join in, she’s quick to redirect us. Read: “NO!”)

Dress up is a popular sport these days. Clothing finds all sorts of creative ways to fit her body… ShoesOn is a favorite saying.

Bodhi, Lucy and Winona are becoming fast friends. And the cats!! She nearly pops out of her skin when the cats come around.
Moons, stars, circles, hearts, triangles and, er, Baby Beluga symbolize her current artistic phase. Or so she says. One has to have a trained eye to recognize them as such.

About a dozen stickers decorate the positive reinforcement chart next to her training potty. We suspect there would be more if we were half as good at this training process as she is. Diapers are just so EASY. (Maybe if we got stickers, too…)

Fall is here! Socks and sweaters in the morning and night, tank tops and sunshine all day long. I love it. Mike loves it, too, but it makes the LA Boy in him a bit nervous about The Cold To Come. Goodnight all! Pictures soon.