I read an article recently about how it seems that toddlers just "happen" to suddenly acquire many new words in a short period of time. The reality is that they have heard those words time after time after time and have been rehearsing them mentally long before they actually verbalize them.
Lately Ella seems to have experienced this word spurt phenomenon. She's identifying seemingly hundreds (ok...not really that many) of objects and items around house, car, and everywhere we go.
Tonight when I put her down for bed she said, "Luh-lu mommeee" (love you mommy). Yes, she HAS been hearing that from me for months...I put her down, say "Love you , Ella" and then speak from her POV and say "Love you mommy". Tonight I didn't say it first, so it feels very real and, somehow, from her heart. And I am filled with happiness.