Monthly Archives: November 2012

Letter to our 11.7 month old

Dear William,

This week on 11/29/2012, you turned 51 weeks or 11.72 months old.

This past week we had Thanksgiving, your first.  It was pretty special, because on Thanksgiving we’re supposed to focus on the good things in our lives — whatever things or people we find to be a blessing or an encouragement — and then we eat a bountiful feast with our loved ones.  We visited your father’s parent’s house.  All of your living grandparents were there, as well as your cousins, Huck and Milo.  You had a fantastic time playing with your cousins, and they acted as your own personal entertainment.  They danced for you, talked to you, chased you, even built you a fort out of the couch cushions!  You thought they were pretty funny and spent a lot of time either watching them, open mouthed, or laughing at them.   You were having such a good time!  The afternoon moved into the evening and the time we should have left to get you home for bed came and went, and I knew there would be a price to pay, likely in the form of a meltdown when we got home, and likely an additional night waking, but I let you stay up past your bedtime.  Both “prices to pay” came true, but after your 2nd wake up, you ended up sleeping until nearly 8:30am the next morning.  Shocking!

cousins

Some of our neighbors have put up Christmas lights, a lot of people start decorating for Christmas on Thanksgiving.  Your father suggested we take you over so you could see the lights, we wanted to see what you thought before we made arrangements to walk through some extravagant neighborhoods in the month of December.  You looked, your eyes open wide and I could see the reflection of those Christmas lights in your eyes.  You smiled and said, “Wow.”  Just like that, you summarized what reporters try to say, using hundreds of words, about Christmas light displays.  I guess we’ll be going to those extravagant neighborhoods.

Foods:  Since you were 11.5 months, I decided to also let you partake in the Thanksgiving feast (with the exception of the really sugary foods) — just like the little human you are.  Over the months of eating, you’ve sampled most of the foods that were served, although a new one this week was cranberries.  You weren’t terribly fond of the surprising tartness of one of the berries, but as is usually the case, despite the scrunchy face you kept going back for more.  Also, this week, your father and I had buck-fitty hot dogs at Costco, since I refuse to let you eat that crap (ha), I let you instead have some raw onion pieces.  You juiced them, like you do most of your food, and I sat there all proud that my baby boy loves onions, just like his parents do.  I also froze a mix of bananas and plain Greek yogurt in smaller “rocketship” popsicle molds, instead of the bohemoth molds you’ve been eating from that I used last year for myself.  Fortunately, as I prefer you to hold your own food (nobody puts food in baby’s mouth but baby rule) these are more your size and so you can hold them all by yourself, which thrills me and thrills you even more.

In addition to the “regular” words and sounds you say, you added some new words this week:  “ball” and “up.”
Regular words and sounds:  Mama, Dadda, Cat, Pffft (hissing), Awwww Awwww (high pitched bird cawing), this (finger point), that (finger point), POP (popsicle), Nanananana (banana), Nana (milk sign) for nursing, Bye Bye (waving), Haaaaaiiii (hi), Waaawaaa (fake crying), Uh oh (timed perfectly with dropping something), Uh uh uh uh uh uhhhhh (timed with something you shouldn’t be doing).

Developments:  You are weighing in at 28 pounds 1/2 ounce, 31 inches tall.  You are wearing 18 month sizes, some 24 months.  Diaper stuffing, I mostly double stuff your diapers these days, especially since you’ve been loving nursing.  We measured you for shoes, and you wear an Infants size 6, Extra Wide.

Steps!  You are taking one step here, one step there, carefully and cautiously.  You took one step one night, then the next night you took 2.  The next night you took 3.  Working your way up in number, slowly but surely!  So exciting and so bittersweet all at the same time.  Then, last night, you took 5 little controlled baby steps, while saying “Ball! Ball!  Ballllll!”  Even timing your speaking with your steps, which makes me think that since you’re talking and walking that it should count for even more!   http://youtu.be/fBDOPmkpGIE

Bath time, you love naked crawling … one night this week, though, we let you loose for your naked crawling time, and you crawled up and down the hallway once, and then crawled right into the bathroom and stood there by the side of the tub looking over your shoulder at me, waiting for me to lift you in.  I let you play in the bathtub sans water this week, while I folded laundry sitting there watching you.  You had a grand time, so maybe that play time has increased your bath time comfort level? I noticed this week when I rinse your hair, you tilt your chin to your chest, so you get less water in your eyes. Smart kid.  Then you like to lick the water as it comes by your mouth.  Better than dipping your face in the tub, I say.

Wednesday night, it was the funniest thing, your pant leg had ridden up on your calf, so I reached over and tugged it down.  You were standing there, busy playing with the magnet on the refrigerator and you stopped, looked up at me, quirked a smirk, sat down and reached down and deliberately tugged the pant leg back up, then stood up and grinned at me, quite pleased with yourself.  Smarty pants.
pantleg up
Teething:  You are teething again.  You’ve had some really tough times this week when the pain is getting to you and you just stop playing or whatever, and scream/cry. You bite Froggy, you bite your popsicles, you even bite your hands and wrists leaving teethmarks on yourself.  It’s so sad.  Although when you’re teething, your latch gets a little pinchy, thankfully you don’t bite me anymore.   I think it’s probably your upper two bilateral incisors, because when you’re teething the upper teeth, they seem to hurt you more than than the lower ones… Tylenol, or as we call it, “medicine” is your friend.

You have started to multitask while nursing… it started with a spinning toy I bought you at Walgreens.  One presses a button and the insides of this toy lights up and spins.  You love the thing and wanted to nurse but didn’t want to let go of it.  So, you nursed and pressed the button, watching the thing light up and spin.  http://youtu.be/lCjwoOmc49w

Sleep:  Your sleep has been great this week.  Wakeup around 6:30am, sometimes later.  Nap have been good, over the holiday weekend you were back and forth between 2 naps and 1 nap.  Bedtime around 7 to 7:30pm.  I’ve been pushing our overnight nursing back to around 4am.  I’ve been toying with weaning this nursing, meaning that if you don’t wake for it, I won’t dreamfeed you, but I’m not ready to do that yet.  I promised myself I would keep it until you were a year old, for several reasons — it keeps my supply up; it keeps my period from returning; it’s less milk that I have to pump during the day; it’s precious time holding you that I don’t get otherwise; and it allows me to check on you in the middle of the night to make sure you’re OK.  The only benefit I would get from NOT doing it is uninterrupted sleep.  So we continue on.

In addition to being enamored with Asian people, you have added elderly people to your list of preferences.  You will spot an elderly person out of a crowd, focus, and draw them in with smiles and laughter.  Fortunately for you, old people like babies.  We were in Costco this past week and you did this to a nice elderly lady, she was IN LOVE with you and even asked if you were like this all the time (yes!) and commented that we are so blessed (yes, more than she can imagine).  She was so tickled to be grinned and laughed at by you.

Things I want to remember about you this week:  How you and I went for a walk and ended up at our neighborhood park with “big kid” swings.  I wanted you to swing, but it wasn’t safe for you to do so by yourself, so I held you and we did the swing thing… you thought it was great, laughing and snuggling with me.  How I took you to the ocean for the first time to watch the sunset, and you were a little scared of the enormity of the ocean, but were fine as long as you were close to me.  How you wanted to nurse so much over the Thanksgiving weekend that I was taken back in my mind to when you were a newborn.  It was time consuming, but that’s OK, because it reminded me to slow down and enjoy the closeness with you.  How your father babyproofed his XBOX, building a box around it with a hole in the wood for his controller’s signals, and the first thing you did was to poke your finger in that hole.  How I learned that when driving you around when it’s dark outside it’s best to leave the dome light on so that you can see me, otherwise you spend the entire drive fussing and crying.  How you initiated an elaborate game of peek-a-boo while we were driving home one night that went on for about 15 minutes, you pulled the hat I wasn’t wearing over your face and hid and then after a minute (literally) of hiding, you lifted the hat and grinned at me waiting for me to acknowledge you.

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And so the holiday season has begun.  The weather is getting chilly again.  As I brought out my winter pajamas this week, I realized that the last time I wore these jammies was last year when I was still pregnant with you and then when you were a newborn.  And so when I hold you close when you’re nursing, I’m feeling a lot of nostalgia for that time when you were so small that I could nurse you and you still fit on the nursing pillow without having to cross your leg and hold one knee up.  There was one morning this week when your father was still in bed and so I brought you in there instead of nursing you straightaway.  You melted into his arms and tucked your head in his neck and you and your father snuggled quietly.  I took a picture, and I look at that picture and while it’s not perfect in lighting or composition, it’s perfect in the emotions revealed.

daddy and baby

This year, I am so thankful that you are here so we can make memories such as this, in the quiet stillness of the early morning hours.  The bliss of love from the protector of our family, to the innocence of you, our son.

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Love, Momma

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Letter to our 11.5 month old.

This week on 11/22/2012, you turned 50 weeks or 11.49 months old.

Over the weekend, since we were traveling last Monday, we attended a makeup music class on Saturday morning.  Because of my work schedule, I usually show up for the last 20 minutes of these classes and this was the first time I was able to attend one of your classes from the start, and I was left in awe of your teacher.  She is incredibly talented, energetic and actually makes the class fun for the adults, too.  Plus, I was envious of the facility where this class was held, in the recreation center for a community whose outdoor pool is still heated… in November!  If you know me, you know I’m all about outdoor swimming pools!

That afternoon we headed to Downtown Disney to meet up with some longtime family friends for dinner, since they are unable to make your birthday party next month.  It was a true joy to see them and catch up, and I was so glad that we were able to make it happen.  Afterward, you and I went into Disneyland to have our picture taken in front of the big Christmas tree… this is something I hope to make an annual tradition.

Grocery shopping with you has become quite the entertainment.  Ever since you made the connection in your brain and you now know that we are buying food, you stare longingly at anything we put in the cart and if you get your hands on it, in your mouth it goes.  I thought the banana last month was funny (embarrassingly so), but then the next week you tongued an ice cream box, and this week you wanted to bite into a raw onion.  I swear, people are gonna think we starve you!

You are weighing in at 28 pounds.  Clothing sizing is the same, 18 month and some 24 months. New words you’re saying this week:  “Wow!”  Your Grandma D. says that came about after library story time, one of the books emphasized that word.  You demonstrate that you have an understanding of a lot of things we say and you are quite the little repeater.  Sometimes you’ll be protesting your diaper change and I’ll interrupt your complaining with a great big “Waaawaawah!”  You’ll look at me and repeat my mournful sound.  The other thing I’ll say is “Stop!”  You respond by looking at me and saying, “Pop?”  ha

New developments:  Climbing!  There’s a toy that has been in your play yard all this time and someone thought it a good idea to bring it into the living room.  Toy rotation, I think they call this.  The problem is that it’s the perfect height of a step and you discovered this and now use it as a step ladder and push it around to various things you want to reach.  When I discovered you doing that, a couple days went by and I put it back in your play yard.  It’s perfect for a newly sitting baby, but not so much for a baby who’s working on walking.  I’m thinking that toy is going to be one of the first ones rotated out after your birthday.

On 11/21, your sixth tooth emerged through your gums, your bottom right lateral incisor.  Clapping!  You clapped your hands for the first time after your music class last Saturday!  Blowing!  You blow out with your mouth… you’ve been “hissing” for awhile now, but the blowing is new, just in time for your birthday cake?  You intentionally blew out your nose and then inhaled, copying me one morning, now we just need to expand that skill to blow into a tissue.  A few weeks ago, during bath time, I started sliding your bath toys off the duck tub’s head into your bath with you, and now every time you get in the tub you look expectantly at the toys sitting on the ledge of the bath tub.  Your Grandma D. says that when she heats your milk during the day, you mimic her swirling the milk by moving your arm in a swirling motion.  Ripping things up!  You love to rip things up: magazines, newspapers, aluminum foil and paper coasters.  You figured out how to turn on your father’s projector with the remote control.  You also figured out how to pull your father’s laptop off the desk and onto the floor, that didn’t end well for the computer.

New Food(s) this week:  Beets.  You recognize the word “banana” and have for awhile, what I didn’t realize and your father did, is that you will come crawling from across the room if asked if you want one.  Unfortunately, banana sounds much like your word for nursing and so you make the milk sign for it while saying “nananannaaa.”

Things I want to remember about you this week?  How you reach for me in the mornings and make the milk sign desperately while saying “NAAAANAAAAA”.  How when you’re nursing and waiting for a letdown, you impatiently sign “milk” with your hand, and when the letdown happens, you stop signing and start moaning. How when you’re done nursing one breast, you’ll pull off and wave at it and say “Bye, bye!”   How one middle of the night nursing you pulled off in the middle of nursing and, concerned, I waited to see what you would do… you blew, and then latched back on and continued nursing.  How when I wanted to bake the gingerbread dough this week that I made last year when you were a newborn, I pulled out my cookie cutters and let you play with one of the boxes while I used the other one.  You examined each cookie cutter intently, one at a time, and then decided it would be a good idea to upend the thing and spread them across the kitchen floor.

How when you sleep at night, no matter how I lay you in your crib you always end up on your tummy and work your way to the end nearest the sound machine.  How when you’re concentrating on something, you have your mouth wide open.

In the mornings, our routine is that once you wake I nurse you and then give you a couple minutes on the floor in your room with your Book Nook while I prep your diaper by double stuffing it.  I pick you up and we look in your closet to determine what you will wear, you grab hold of the Mickey Mouse Medellion.  Then I change you and dress you and we exit your room and go find your father.  One morning this week I told you, as usual, “Let’s go find daddy!” Except your father was still in the shower and instead of going in there, I was planning to hold you a bit longer.  You started to cry and wiggle, so I let you down thinking you wanted to play.  The second you got to the floor, you hustled yourself into the master bedroom, around the corner and pushed open the bathroom door, and started banging on the shower door.  You were going to say good morning to your daddy, regardless of where he was!

Every day that goes by, you become more of your own person, with your own personality and your own preferences.  Parents who’ve gone down this road before me used to say stuff like, “It’s so fun to watch them discover things.”  I understood what they were saying, of course, but to watch it in motion, watching it happen before my very own eyes and know that the things I say and the things I do are a crucial part of your development, it’s an awesome and somewhat scary thing.  Much like when you were a newborn and I found you watching my every move in the mirror when I changed your diaper and I started smiling nonstop, now I find myself evaluating the things I say and the facial expressions I use around you.  You are an awesome kid and I don’t want anything I do to change that.

Love you forever,
Momma

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Happy Thanksgiving!

There are so many things to be thankful for this day.  Every day really, but today especially when thankfulness is the topic of the day.

I’m thankful for those of you who still read here.  I’m thankful for those of you who still comment.  If you read here and don’t comment, I really wish you would.  Authors of blogs love comments and I’m no exception!

I’m thankful for my husband who really is one of the most amazing men I’ve ever met. Not a day goes by that there isn’t something new that I appreciate about him.  I really need to be better about telling him.  He does so much around here and does it without fanfare.

I’m thankful for my mom who cares for William during the day.  It is so special that she is able to have a relationship with him and that I can trust that he’s being well-loved and well-tended while we go to work.

Topping my list is the miracle that is our William.  There are moments that I still can’t believe he’s here.  There are also moments that I still can’t believe he’s ours.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

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Letter to our 11.2 month old

Dear William,

This week on 11/15/2012 you turn 49 weeks or 11.2 months old.

Last weekend you had your first air travel and overnight visit.  We flew Southwest Airlines to Nebraska and then drove across the river to my aunt’s house in Iowa.  We stayed there for three nights.  This trip was very special and I was glad you were able to meet both of my dad’s sisters, your Great Aunts.  You are a link to my dad — his only grandchild — who died way too early in his life.  I wish he could have met you, he would have loved you.  I’m pausing here in my writing of this to ponder those last two sentences for a moment, and just what a miracle your life is.

Your Great Aunt Donis’ favorite thing to say to you was, “HEY!! I’m talking to YOU!”  Your Great Aunt Marjorie would tell you that you’re a good baby.  Your Great Uncle Jim would tell you, “You have to keep an eye on me. You just don’t know what I’m going to do next!”  Your response to all of those things after the first day (when you were a bit jetlagged) was to look at them and laugh.

We had a family gathering on Saturday night and you met your second cousin and his daughter and a whole bunch of people that I don’t even know how to list them… but when it came time to say goodbye, you waved and waved and said “bye bye bye bye bye” and laughed and laughed and the goodbyes went on forever because you were laughing and they wanted to make you laugh even more.  I’ve never seen such happy goodbyes!

While we were there, we took you to the Bob Kerrey pedestrian bridge.  I wanted to take some of your 11 month pictures there… you wanted to speed crawl the entire span of the bridge and seemed to think the dividing line between Nebraska and Iowa was the start/finish line.  Just so you know?  Picture taking and speed crawling are not compatible activities.

Overall, though, your father and I are so very proud of how well you traveled and behaved the entire weekend.  The ultimate compliment came from people on the plane who either were astonished at the end of the flight when you sat up and started laughing and waving bye bye at them.  So many people said, “I didn’t even know he was there.” Or, “What a happy baby he is!”  Actually, you were just yourself — happy and hilarious.  You nursed very well, you slept and napped well, you laughed and played charmingly, all that despite the fact that your sixth tooth is working its way through your gums.  You are just an amazing kid!

Food
We sat you down to dinner one night this week, and you sat there for over an hour, eating and eating.  You love your food.  For dinner that night you had chicken, broccoli, brussel sprouts, onion, tofu (a first time try=love), a baked french fry (no salt), banana and apple.  While we were traveling, you had some beef stew, you tried Mexican rice, a fruit salad (cottage cheese, sugar free jello, pineapple). I noticed this week, with the traveling and such, that you prefer and do eat better when you have your own chair (instead of sitting on our lap) at the table.

Developments
You are weighing in this week at 27 pounds 10 ounces.  Same clothing size (18 month, some 24 month) and diaper strategy as last week.  Things you say, “Cat,” “Pfffff” (hissing), “Say it,” “Pop So” or just “POP” (popsicle).

You are cruising with more and more regularity around the room.  From one thing to the next you go.  You love to open the top drawer of my desk and pull out the bendy ruler, then you move on to my keyboard drawer, and then the cat door.  You use chairs as a walker, pushing them along all over the place.  It’s convenient that most every house has chairs in them!  You point at things you want or want to know what they’re called.  When you want to nurse, you make the milk “sign”… and in the event I miss or ignore that cue, you pull the travel nursing pillow out of the bag if we’re out or if we’re home, the nursing pillow off the chair and sit in the middle of it and stare pointedly at me.  Your favorite book of all time is the Quiet/Loud book.  You also like the food book, and a purple Elmo book and a Wiggles book.  You love to turn the pages of your books when we’re reading them.

Things I want to remember about you this week:  How very sweet it was to hold you on my lap while we flew on the airplane, you asleep after nursing, and the way the dim light from the window in front of us slanted across your face, you twitching in your sleep and with every twitch you curled yourself closer to me.  Not knowing you would do this on the flight out, I dressed us both too warmly.  I didn’t make that mistake on the way back.

How cute your little fluff butt is when it goes crawling across the room.  How you were SO excited when you found “your” toy car in the bedroom at your Great Aunt Marjorie’s house (a duplicate of the car you have at home).  How when we went outside there, and the wind was blowing and rattling the leaves in the big tree behind the house, you sighed and said “Oooohhhhhh….” so amazed.  How when we were at our layover in Las Vegas airport, your first response to the blinking lights on the slot machines was, “Oh wow.”    How at each of our flight’s layovers, you found a wheelchair both times and were so excited — WHEELS!

How excited you were when we got home and the kitties were swarming around us, and you laughed and laughed and crawled and crawled.  You were so happy to be home.  When we set up the blow up turkey outside our home, you hissed at the deflated heap the next morning because you though that heap was the inflatable Halloween cat.  The way you slap your tummy or your knee in rhythm to some song playing in your mind.  The way you push a toy along while you crawl like it’s a soccer ball, I don’t think you’ll ever hold a toy in your mouth.  How funny it was when you discovered an old pacifier from when you were a newborn in my car, you examined it thoroughly, tried it this way and that, and then decided that it must be a teether toy and promptly started chomping on it.  How desperate the look on your face was when I was eating some brussel sprouts and you wanted some, and then when I gave it to you, amused, thinking you’d surely spit it out, you ate it like it was candy.  You surprise me at every turn.

Maybe it’s because I’m an older mom, or maybe it’s because as I’ve gotten older I’ve learned to appreciate myself for who I am, and let my concerns of what other people think or do slide away from me.  So when people ask me what you do, do you walk or do this or that?  I just smile and tell them not yet.  I know it will happen when YOU are ready to make it happen.  Just like when you decided it was time to be born.  Just like you decided it was time to sleep all night long, and I was the one who needed to nurse you instead of the other way around.  Just like you decide what you want to eat, or not.  Simply put, there is nothing that you do today that I wish you didn’t do and similarly, there is nothing that you don’t do today that I wish you did.  If there’s nothing else that I’ve learned in life, I hope it shows that I’ve learned to cling to and savor each moment as it passes by rather than rushing to the next moment.  I like to let each moment in time stand on its own, like a perfectly formed morning dew drop on a flower petal.  For this second, this moment, you are here, you are this size, this person. You will never, ever be who you are now again.  There’s no going back, only forward.  But maybe I can capture bits of this moment in these letters, I can sure try.

You do you perfectly, because you are perfectly you.

Love, Momma

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Letter to our 11 month old

Dear William,

This week on 11/08/11, you turn 48 weeks or 11 months old.

Despite all my fretting and worrying about the time change this past weekend, it wasn’t an issue at all.  You ended up taking a 2 hour 20 minute afternoon nap that day, and then I kept you up 1.5 hours past your bedtime.  You were soooo happy about staying up — you love partying with your parents!  You spent an inordinate amount of time opening and closing a kitchen cabinet, and then shredding a piece of aluminum foil that you found in that cabinet.  You industriously got into the top drawer of my desk and pulled out my bendy ruler and then sat down and happily played with that for awhile.  Basically, you got into everything you shouldn’t (or you thought you shouldn’t).  Once in bed, you slept deeply and, remarkably, you slept until 6:30am (adjusted time) the next morning, which is your normal wake time… and you’ve been doing that all week now.

One of the pipes connecting to our water heater sprung a leak last week, the morning of my birthday, in fact.  My first thought?  How are we going to wash your diapers??  Thankfully our neighbors washed them for us that night, which really is going above and beyond being a friendly neighbor, but what can I say?  We’re surrounded by amazing people!  The next challenge was your bath water… so heated that on the stove and carried the warmed water upstairs to pour in your bathtub.  Your father diligently tried to fix the water heater for three days, but to no avail.  The water that poured down over it must have ruined the thermostat, so I ended up purchasing a new one, and your father installed it.  It seems kind of sad that one paragraph can sum up what was a huge hiccup in our life and routine, but it can.

You attended your first story time at the library this week.  Your Grandma D. said you did well and enjoyed watching the big kids.  They read the “Quiet/Loud” book, one of the books you’re familiar with. Also, some finger puppets stories and used the shakers.  You loved the shakers, you use those in your weekly music class. Then afterward, rolling up the rug the kids sat on and playing with the dirty flag stand were highlights for you.  I guess Mondays are going to be busy days for you — library story time AND your music class!

Developments:  You are weighing in at 27 pounds 10 ounces this week.  Clothing sizes, still the same.  18 month sizes, but we’re buying you 24 month sizes.  Diaper strategy — same as last week.

You wave consistently, sometimes it happens a little late… like after we’ve said our goodbyes and are around the corner you remember that you’re supposed to wave goodbye, but you do get your wave out there, and you wave and wave and wave and accompany it with “Bye bye bye bye bye bye bye!” You say, “HIIIIIIIIIIIII!” to me when I get home from work.  Open mouthed kisses, oh my gosh, I love these.  It feels like you’re going to eat my nose or my cheek or my chin when you do them, but any kiss you’re willing to dole out, I’ll take it!  When I ask you in the morning , “Do you see your neighborhood?” You will turn and look out the window.  And when asked, “Do you see your flag?”  You adjust your eyes downward to where the flag hangs.  Before I pull you out of your crib for nursing, I ask you “Where’s Froggy?  Can you get Froggy?”  You reach down and grab your Froggy Lovey.  You say “Uh oh” BEFORE you drop something on purpose and AFTER if you dropped something accidentally, all while leaning over to watch it fall or see where it landed.  You say, “Naaa naaa,” with a smile and a bit of desperation, for nursing, and will point at the nursing pillow.  You say “cat” and hiss when you see a cat.  When you see a bird in the sky, you say “Ahhhhh ahhhhhhh” in a high-pitched voice, sounding much like a very happy crow cawing (we have lots of crows around us).  You say “pop” for popsicle, which is your afternoon treat.  You are >>>thisclose<<< to taking your first unsupported step.  I have a ridiculous number of videos of you standing there, looking like you’re going to do it, and then you plop down and take off crawling.  Then the dilemma, do I delete it because you didn’t take a step or keep it because it’s YOU?

Food:
Butternut squash, is still a no go.

You love peas, kidney beans, persimmons, bananas (of course), apple, pears, chicken, and turkey.  The banana oatmeal bars I make for you continue to be a highlight of your day. Cheerios continue to be a choice addiction.  Last week it was the funniest thing, I gave you a half of banana and went to work in the kitchen cleaning a bowl.  I looked at you a minute later and you were sitting there in your high chair with a grin on your face and the banana nowhere in sight.  A little exasperated, I checked the floor, your legs, your bib pocket… and finally came to the conclusion that you had, in fact, EATEN the banana in its entirety… not even leaving any on your face or hands!  Which is why I find it amusing that one or two of our cats are always circling below your high chair while you eat.  As if you would deign to share you precious food with them?  ha ha Right.

One of the nights this week, you pulled yourself up and pointed at an apple, which was right near the bananas, which is your favorite.  Surprised, I asked if you wanted an apple, you pointed at it again. So I gave it to you, and you sat down on the floor and started eating it just like, well, like it was an apple and like you were an adult.

You have started to sort your food… broccoli, green beans you set aside for later.  Colorless food, bananas or turkey, for example, you will eat first. Popsicles take priority over anything else.
You love to drink water from a straw, and since you’ve been a bit unpredictable with your morning bottle, I thought we might try cold breastmilk in a straw cup.  You were interested but more fascinated by the fact that your fingertip fit in the tip of the straw.  I’m thinking maybe a “real” straw instead of the rubber straw might be in order.

Things I want to remember about you this week:  The way you suck on your hand or forearm when we lay you on the changing table.  How you cry when we lay you on the changing table if you’ve pooped in your diaper… I have NO idea why you do this, but I can always tell just by your reaction if you have pooped.  When I offer to nurse, you smile and softly say “Naaa naaa.”  When I cover your eyes and ask you “Guess who?” you laugh and laugh and laugh.  The way you crawl into the midst of all the children at your music class to claim your instrument when it’s freestyle time.  How anything and everything is an instrument to you — you pat the toilet lid, an empty box, lids to pans, even your legs — all as if they’re a drum.  How loud you are when you’re nursing or eating food, proclaiming loudly to all within 25 feet your enjoyment of your nourishment.

A few years ago, my sister-in-law shared with me how she and her husband were somewhat nervous when they first learned they were expecting their first child, it can be a bit intimidating.  But then she said she realized that it would be OK, because you grow with your children.  And so it was this morning that I woke at 5:30am to escape a bad dream, one where I woke with tears rolling down my face.   I dreamt that someone had kidnapped you and no one could find you, and I kept asking everyone if they had heard anything, anything at all,and no one could answer my question the way I wanted them to.  I felt so bereft and lost.  I checked the video monitor and you were there, where you were supposed to be, sleeping peacefully on your side, your arms extended in front of you and your hands clutched together as if in prayer, Froggy in the midst of it all.  You were OK.  When we drive over speed bumps, and you’re in the car, your father and I both say “BOINGY, BOINGY!!”  simply because it makes you smile.  I asked your father the other day if he hears in his head the “BOINGY BOINGY” even if you’re not in the car.  He smiled at me and replied, “Yes, but that’s because I still say it… to the empty car.”  Which is to say that somehow what my sister-in-law shared with me years ago has now become a reality… we have grown with you, and you have filled our lives with such joy, even to the point that we entertain you even when you’re somewhere else.

Happy 11 months, my lovebug… and now, I have one month left to try to wrap my head around the fact that next month you will be one year old.

Love, Momma

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Filed under Letter to William, Our Kid is Cute, Sometimes I Dream

A Shelf.

Me: Hey, did you notice?  I cleared a shelf in the shower for you.

Him: I did.  How long have we been married?

Me: Ha Ha!  Over seven years now.

Him:  *looking around*

Me:  What?

Him:  I’m looking to see where you stole some of my space elsewhere.

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Filed under Best Husband

Letter to our 10.8 month old

Dear William,

This week on November 1, 2012, you turned 47 weeks or 10.8 months old. I took the day off from work as a floating holiday because November 1st is my birthday.   I debated doing my fantasy of leaving for work in the morning as usual, calling in sick and going to a hotel room for sleep. But I decided instead to spend the day with the most amazing miracle in my life — you  — and we went to Disneyland. Highlights of our day were:  Breakfast at the little cafe on Main Street, going through the Haunted Mansion, and hanging out with Jack Skellington and Sally Ragdoll.

This past weekend you had your first haircut.  We took you to Cool Cuts 4 Kids and it was the best place ever.  Their waiting room had fun cars for you to play with and a TV for you to watch. The stylist chair you sat in was a cool red fire truck/car with a steering wheel and bell on the hood.  When the stylist touched your head for the first time, you gave her the once over and then let her proceed without any further protest.  She was amazingly fast and really good with you.  Mostly, you were sharing how cool the experience by verbalizing with well placed melodic “ooohhh!” and “aaahhhh!”  Until she used the electric clippers, those scared you a little bit.  My mom asked me the next day if I had cried, and I honestly told her no.  The thing is, when you were born your hair was already over your ears, so basically you came out of the womb needing a haircut.  Mostly, I felt relief to have finally gotten it done!  What had been holding me back from doing it was that I wanted to find a  place that made it special without charging a bunch of money.

We attended Dr. Werlin’s annual Halloween themed miracle baby reunion last Saturday.  He truly is one of a kind — he remembers every single one of his thousands of patients and greets them in the same unique way he always greeted us when we were undergoing treatment.  I don’t know what most doctors do, but I honestly don’t think very many of them host an annual Halloween party and then stand in a tent for 3 hours so that all of his former patients and their miracle children can get a picture with him.  It was great to see him and we also met my friend there who I referred to Dr. Werlin, and the result of their treatment with Dr. Werlin: 6 month old twin boys.  I dressed you as a leprechaun, and you were the cutest little leprechaun I’ve ever seen!

You are weighing in at 27 pounds 3 ounces this week.  Also, you got your 5th tooth, your lower left lateral incisor, on 10/30/2012.  Wearing 18 month sizes, some 24 months.  You continue to practice standing on your own (without support) for longer & longer periods of time.  You have linked “uh oh” with something going wrong, and will now intentionally drop things and say “UH OH!”  You have also linked that adults will get up if you  are touching something you shouldn’t, so now you reach for something and then look at one of us to see if we’re getting up.

First foods this week:  Cheerios — no one told me these are baby crack.  Your father gave you some on Saturday afternoon and couldn’t get them to you fast enough, and when you would finish one, you would lean forward and peer around him, looking to make sure the next one was on its way.  Chicken — at Dr. Werlin’s reunion.  Beef stew — made in the crockpot. Pineapple (at Disneyland). Lemon (at Red Robin), you ate it with no unusual faces, which kind of bummed me out.
Regular staples in your diet:  Bananas; Plums; Apples; Banana oatmeal raisin bars; Avocado; Broccoli; Onion; and other samples of food from whatever we’re eating.
I continue to be impressed with just how much you enjoy food.  If I didn’t think you were so cute, I’d be embarrassed at how loudly you vocalize about how good you find food.  The better you think the food, the louder you moan and groan while eating it.  Some foods, like bananas, even rate an enthusiastic squeal and smile when you see it coming at you!

Naps: 1 nap a day starting around noon, we let you sleep as long as you want with a hard stop at 3pm.  You are averaging about 1.5 hours for those naps, and every now and again you throw a 2.5 hour nap in the mix. Bedtime is at 7pm, wakeup for the day is 6:30am.

Things I want to remember about this week:  How funny you are when you go crawling along while pushing a toy, or a bowl, or a book.  Instead of holding  (whatever you’re taking with you), you push it along with one of your hands on the floor.  That you figured out how a your little bathtub toy bucket fit inside another bucket this week.  The way you grabbed one of my breastpads and were SO EXCITED about it because it’s round.  It was even funny to me when you bit it.  The way you love your little book nook in your room and it’s a great place for me to set you when I’m cleaning up your diaper or prepping your jammies for bed, because I know you’ll be interested in it for longer than a minute.  The way you snuggle your head against me when I wear you in the Lillebaby carrier.  How if I lay down on the floor near you, you come crawling at me with your mouth in a wide open smile and crawl up on me and lay your nose against mine, giggling the whole way — we jokingly call game we play infant CPR, because that’s what it looks like — you are saving my life!

I walked through the house this morning, it was dark and quiet, illuminated only by the kitchen light.  Your ball was up against the kitchen table leg, your little racecar was upside down under the table so you could play with its wheels, an empty pretzel container was in the middle of the floor (you beat it like it’s a drum), your egg shaker lay next to it, your activity table was pushed up against your feeding chair and I resisted the urge to straighten these things to their proper positions.  Instead, I stood there and imagined you playing with them, the way your eyes light up and you greet them every morning as if you’ve never seen them before in your life.  I took a moment and basked in the knowledge that you are our baby… and that is so cool.

Love, Momma

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Filed under Best Husband, Letter to William, Our Kid is Cute