5 Things to Expect With a Toddler

In Fatherhood by The Unexpected Dad3 Comments

“Toddler” is defined as a child that is “just beginning to walk”, although I think toddler is more of a time-frame between being a “baby” and being a little kid, with walking defining the beginning of this stage. When my daughter started walking and officially became a toddler lots of things changed, some rather surprising.

Here are the top five changes in our toddler:

  1. Standing and Walking – Ok, this is the most obvious one. For quite a while my daughter would walk while we would hold her hand, but if we let go she would immediately sit down. Then one evening she realized that she could keep standing on her own and walk without assistance from us. This opened a flood-gate. From then on, all she wanted to do was walk; she rarely crawls anymore. Of course along with the walking (some unsteady walking at times) comes trips, spills and crying. But let me tell you, it’s great to see her progress and as a bonus the entertainment value is pretty high.
  2. Extended Reach – This goes along with the standing and walking. Once they realize they can stand and walk on their own, they will also notice that they can reach things they couldn’t before. Table-tops, counters, stoves, etc. We had to do some re-arranging of items we have on our counters and table tops so that they were out of reach. An important note: When there is a pot or pan on the stove, make sure the handle is pointed back toward the wall, not hanging over the edge of the stove.
  3. Independence and Will – Once my daughter started walking her motivation for independence skyrocketed. She no longer wants to be held and carried around much, she will insist on going where we don’t want her to go, touch what we don’t want her to touch. We went to an outdoor store several weeks ago; she didn’t want to be in her stroller and didn’t want to be held. She wanted to walk around on her own, touch things and pick things up. Keeping a constant eye on here is a necessity.
  4. Talking (and Talking Back) – The number of words my daughter speaks has exploded in the last 1-2 months. She can now express herself much more by “using her words” than with crying and pointing. Along with talking comes “talking back”. I have to say that her favorite word is “NO!”:

    “Do you want more to eat?”

    “Are you done eating?”

    “Do you want to go play?”,

    “Do you want to go out?”,

    You get the idea.

  5. More Eating – Feeding my daughter has historically been an on and off struggle. She has certain items that she will always eat, and other items she will never eat. However it seems as though once my daughter started walking, in general her eating really picked up. There are many times now that my wife and I are done eating, and our toddler is still asking for more food. I assume this has something to do with the number of calories she is now burning since she is more active. Of course there are still those items that she will refuse to eat (for some reason she just will not eat potatoes in any form, with the one exception on french fries from Wendy’s).

What are some new things you have noticed in your toddler? We want to know!

+20 Months

The Unexpected Dad

The Unexpected Dad

My name is Paul and I am The Unexpected Dad.My wife and I married late in life and we didn’t really expect to have children (thus the title of my blog). We weren’t opposed to the idea of having children, but just assumed that it was not in the cards for us.

I write about the rather unexpected journey of fatherhood, please join me!

Sign Up
The Unexpected Dad

Latest posts by The Unexpected Dad (see all)


  1. Steve

    Great article! Brings me back to when my daughters had just started walking! I was excited and terrified at the same time. My whole world changed at that point! One other way was the climbing as well. My 2nd especially has embraced the climbing! I have to really watch them as they are always ending up in new places that they can’t get down from safely.

    1. The Unexpected Dad Author
      The Unexpected Dad

      Hey Steve,

      That’s true, we’re always chasing my daughter around the house trying to keep her out of trouble. It’s really interesting too watching her explore and learn new things every day.

      Thanks for reading!


  2. Frank

    Great post! Raising a toddler means hitting new developmental milestones–sometimes making you wish you can go back to the previous ones. Tabletops and countertops must be watched with care.

Leave a Comment