For an aunt, it's difficult, not because I don't want to see her grow up, but because babies like to cuddle and nieces, who are asserting themselves as independent beings, less so.
But still, we have fun.
On Christmas Eve, I looked out the window and noted it was snowing. "Baby, get your boots and coat on! Let's go play in the snow." She went and put on her boots, adorably on the wrong feet, which I didn't correct because it was too cute and it didn't actually matter. She put on her coat and out we went to turn our faces up to the falling snow.
I tried to show her how to catch snowflakes on her tongue but she just laughed at me as I dodged around on my knees trying to catch one so she could see.
Then we headed over to the playground nearby where I pulled off a layer for her so she could sit on a dry swing and I swung her. For her, the higher she swung, the better. However, I wanted a picture of her swinging with the snowflakes swirling around so it was a race to push her high enough to appease her and try to get a picture at the right moment (and of her smiling) before she demanded that I return to my pushing spot and resume my duties.
Soon enough, she was tired from the swing and tired of having snowflakes hit her in the face. (She kept saying, "Eww. Icky" whenever they landed on her) So, I suggested she try the slide next. I took my shirt and carefully wiped down the slide so it wouldn't be wet. She boldly marched up the stairs, took a few cautious moves towards the slide and let me convince her that it would be fun.
Down she went, faster than she had ever gone down it before and she flew off the end of the slide and landed on the ground with a plop before I even had time to put out my arms and catch her. She started crying, more from shock than from being hurt. Immediately, I scooped her up in my arms and apologized for convincing her to go down the slide. I rubbed her back and kissed her cheeks and then I paused and realized what I was doing: my little miss independent was letting me hold her and coddle her! She let me carry her all the way home and we made comments to each other about the snow and the slide and the swing. Then, when we got home, I told her that the thing to do after playing in the snow was to drink chocolate so she settled down to a glass of cold chocolate while I settled down to a mug of hot chocolate.
She and I went downstairs to try to settle down for a nap in which we watched one episode of Dora and one episode of Diego because I told her that Diego was my favorite and she insisted on watching something I liked.