i've known the time was coming, and now it is here. it is good and bad, happy and sad. we're in the "by myself" stage. it started several months ago in the carseats. instead of putting the girls in, they insisted they could do it "by self." now it's more than the carseats. it is getting dressed, walking in a store, washing hands, etc. while i do love the independence, it does test my patience occasionally. the other day, one of the girls even suggested that she could fix her hair by herself. luckily, i talked her out of that one. most recently, they have started putting on their own shoes. this isn't really new - they have been putting on their shoes for quite a while now - but just within the last few weeks, they finally figured out how to put the little velcro strip through the little hole to fasten their shoes. it isn't that big of a deal, but it was the last step that they used to ask us to finish. now we can cross that off the list of things they need us for! until we buy shoes with laces, that is.