Easter 2014

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ImageLast year, E was a tiny baby, but this year he lit up when he saw his Easter basket. We filled it with a new board book, some Melissa and Doug crayons, and these soft and squeezy farm animals. He was a little hesitant at first so we had to assure him that it was ok to pull everything out and play with it, but he was smiling the whole time, and quickly started passing the farm animals out to me one by one.

My parents also made him an Easter basket with a couple of new books, a new polo shirt and shorts for the summer, Goldfish crackers, and these awesome bubbles. Those Jelly Belly bubbles are the best and E loves all of his new books!

In addition to the regular eggs the kids hunted for, my parents made a special golden egg for each one and there was a map with directions on how to find it in the backyard. My mom and dad are so clever 🙂

We were lucky to have lovely spring weather so that most of the day could be spent outside!

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Enjoying Springtime

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Although it won’t last long, we’ve finally had our first taste of spring weather. Pretty soon the a/c will be working round the clock and sunscreen will be necessary for every outing, but we’re enjoying the transition out of winter cold fronts that lasted longer than usual this year.

I think that the appearance of wildflowers and blossoming trees bring a little optimism out in everyone, so we try to get a glimpse of them up close whenever possible. My parents have a beautiful wisteria tree in their front yard that has the most gorgeous purple flowers hanging from it. The pops of bright color here and there make me happy.

 

ImageE really enjoyed the petting zoo at our county rodeo. Since he hasn’t been around many animals before, he wasn’t quite sure what to do or think at first, but once he understood that it was safe to pet them, he lit up. He ended up trying to give all the goats kisses. ♡

13 Months!

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With all the birthday planning, I never got around to writing up E’s 12 months update. I didn’t feel like there was such a big difference in his development from 11 to 12 months of age, but now that he’s 13 months I see many changes. I can’t believe that just four months ago he was only 9 months old!

At 12 months he could say two words: “wow,” and, “whoa”. On his birthday, when we told him, “E, it’s your birthday! Happy birthday!” he replied “Wow, WOW!” At 13 months he’s added one more word to his vocabulary and that is, “oh-oh.” (uh-oh) There has to BE an uh-oh for him to say it though (like dropping food off his tray)

E at 13 months:

Is so BUSY! Loves to play, and is good at entertaining himself when we’re at home.

Loves to explore outside, and when we’re inside he loves to look out the window.

Blows on his food even when it’s not hot sometimes.

When he’s done with the food on his tray he drops pieces over the side and says, “oh-oh!”

Often squeals when frustrated.

Hates having his hands and face wiped, and getting his teeth brushed.

Is very affectionate! He comes over to lay his head on us and gives us hugs all day. Loves to come sit on out laps.

He’s also going through a period of wanting to be held all the time. I think part of the reason is that he wants to see what’s going on at the adult level. He especially wants to be picked up while we are cooking, to see things on the stove, and when I’m getting ready in the bathroom, to see what’s on the counter.

Likes to be tickled under the chin.

Points at things in books.

Comes to us for help, like if he wants us to open his shape sorter to dump the pieces out, or wants us to turn his mp3 player on.

Wants to do everything by himself. At meal times we have to give him a utensil so that he can try to feed himself while we feed him at the same time. Sometimes he gets food to his mouth 🙂

Tries to put his own clothes on. Steps on his shoes, drapes shirts around his neck, and when we put out his pj’s at night he sits down right on them.

He’s had his first haircut! It was so cute long, but reached past shoulder length and was getting in his eyes, so it was time. Maybe now with his “boy” haircut, people won’t mistake him for a baby girl anymore!

11 Months!

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Less than a month until his first birthday! We’re looking forward to a little party at the end of this month. ♡

E at 11 months:

– Is walking! And can stand up on his own without having to pull up on something.

– He can also walk a little, bend down to pick something up, straighten back up, and keep going.

– Still plays by tapping two things together, but he also likes to try shaking things to see if they rattle, and then throw them.

– Sometimes randomly puts an arm in the air like he’s reaching for something, but nothing’s there. (See above photo)

– His hair is looking more dark brown than black these days.

– Goes to sleep at night in his crib without being rocked first.

– Says “Ohh” and “Whoa” and makes the sound “lolilolilo” a lot.

– He likes likes dropping toys over the side of the baby gate and also enjoys putting small toys of top of other things.

– When there’s something on his high chair tray that he’s done eating or doesn’t want he’ll start tossing it piece by piece over the side.

– Bounces or sways to music.

– Loves diving face first into pillows.

– Still loves toys with wheels, and will often flip the toy over and spin the wheels. He also loves to check out the back of any toys.

‘Tis the Season

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I feel like this Christmas season started early for us. We started our shopping in October and saw a sky diving Santa in November. We were ready to get E’s first Christmas started!

 

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The sky diving Santa and elves were way more awesome than we expected. There was a huge crowd waiting when we arrived and a big X on the ground were Santa was going to land. A live band played Christmas music and we were told than when we heard “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”, we would see Santa jump from a plane that was circling above our heads. Santa and his two elves were obviously professional sky divers because they came swooping in for quick landings, doing flips and turns in the air along the way.

 

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We took E to get a professional photo taken with Santa the Monday before Thanksgiving. Santa appears at the mall some time in early November and has crazy lines from Black Friday to Christmas. It was kind of spur of the moment, but as soon as he woke up from his afternoon nap that day, we dressed him, gave him milk, and drove to the mall. There was no one waiting for Santa, so we walked right up and sat him in his lap.

He didn’t cry! In fact, he was mesmerized by Santa’s beard. We got a great photo, and were able to take our time, picking out what kind of prints we wanted, since there were no other customers waiting behind us.

 

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My mom found the idea for these hand print Santa ornaments online and we decided to try it out. We thought it would make a cute gift for his grandparents in Japan. I believe the dough was made from flour, water, and salt and then once we got E’s hand prints and one from my nephew, we just cut them out, added a hole for the string, and baked them all afternoon on low heat in the oven. The following week we painted them and then put a sprayed them clear for shine. I think they turned out great!

 

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In early December, Santa was coming to our local library that we visit each week, so we thought we’d try meeting Santa one more time before Christmas. This time we had to wait 30 minutes, and by the time we got to the front of the line, E was antsy because it was just an hour before bedtime. I don’t think he was afraid of Santa, just tired.

I should’ve known that we wouldn’t get lucky twice, but a first Christmas isn’t complete without your baby crying on Santa’s lap, right? I have a feeling that Santa will definitely be scary next year….

 

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My mom got a fancy, new camera so she took our Christmas card photo this year. She’s also captured some great Christmas photos of E that we are thankful to have, including the one at the top of this post.

 

It’s also the season for sick babies. E and my husband are both getting over colds at the moment and I’m doing my best to not catch it too.

I think we’ve been pretty lucky so far though, because many other new moms I know have had babies suffering through multiple colds, strep, and the flu recently. E’s never had a fever or anything bad enough to mess with his sleep cycles (thank goodness!) Let’s hope he finishes out his first year healthy!

Cheers until after Christmas!

10 Months!

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Our little turkey turned 10 months old on Thanksgiving day! My mom and I made the meal together this year and it was a lot of fun. E has no problem playing by himself, so it was easy to watch him and do the cooking at the same time.

 

E at 10 months:

– The only syllable he says repeatedly is, “Bi-bi-bi-bi-bi.” Other than that, he speaks completely random baby gibberish.

– Some days he loves to eat, some days he hates it and just wants milk.

– He loves to put things in buckets (blocks, small toys, etc.) We have to be careful of the toilet…

– He shrieks and makes strange vocal sounds.

– He opens and closes his hand at people like he’s waving.

– Has taken steps, but is not walking. He loves it when we hold his hands so he can “walk” around the apartment.

– He tries to “catch” streams of water, like when Papa pours water on him in the bath tub.

– He loves to see himself in mirrors.

– He looks at Mama when he is doing something he knows he shouldn’t.

– Likes to rock back and forth (left to right) in his high chair.

First Shoes

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Last week, we took E shopping for his first pair of shoes.

I was really indecisive about when the best time to put shoes on a baby was, but I finally decided to go for it. I’ve read many times that there’s no reason to put shoes on your baby before they’ve established solid walking skills, which made sense to me. They should learn to walk on their bare feet first, right?

Well at the same time, I kept hearing that if you don’t start putting shoes on them early, it will take a lot of work to get them used to wearing them, which made me nervous.

So we went ahead and bought a pair of shoes suitable for a cruising, possibly walking soon baby. The employees at Stride Rite made it really easy to pick out a pair that we liked. It was pricier than I expected, but you get what you pay for right? I figured that his first pair of shoes was a little splurge-worthy.

Now whenever we leave the house, we put them on him. I usually sit next to him and put our shoes on together, explaining the importance of wearing shoes outside. He doesn’t much like the process of having his shoes put on, but he doesn’t seem to mind or even notice them once he’s wearing them, which is good.

I also took him on a trip to the playground this week to break them in. It was his first time actually playing on the equipment and he had a lot of fun. ♡

Yesterday and today, he’s been standing independently for short periods! He’ll pull up on something and then let go and balance on his own for several seconds. Sometimes he can even manage to clap while doing so, which makes me think he understands what an accomplishment it is, haha. This morning, he even took two steps between our couch and a baby gate which was exciting. We might have a walker soon…

Sushi Baby!

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E was sushi for Halloween. ♡ (nigirizushi to be exact…)

The costume turned out really cute and was a big hit!

I saw the idea in Parents magazine years ago, and knew that if I ever had a baby I would remember it for their first Halloween.

http://www.parents.com/holiday/halloween/costumes/sushi-costume/

My mom and I made the orange fish pillow and the green seaweed sash. She did the sewing and I painted the white lines on the fish (instead of using tape like the instructions suggest). The rice part of the sushi is just a regular white onesie.

He wore it to his library play group on the 30th, and on Halloween we visited my mom’s school where there was a little Halloween parade with all the kids wearing their costumes. He crawled around and played like normal, not seeming to notice the pillow on his back for more than a moment, and never tried to pull it off.

I will definitely be holding on to this costume in case another baby can wear it. ♡

9 Months Check-up and Flu Shot!

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3/4 of the way to the first birthday!

He had his check-up today and it was mostly a discussion with his doctor about FOOD! She wanted to know what, when, how much he eats. We’ve been slowly transitioning him to finger foods any way because he prefers feeding himself to being spoon fed.

There were no immunizations other than a flu shot, but he did get a finger prick to check for anemia. The doctor could tell from the blood count that he was getting over a bug, which explains the vomiting and diarrhea last week.

Other than that we discussed fluctuating baby fat, car seats, verbal and motor skills, dental hygiene, and home safety.

He goes back in a month for a booster to the flu shot, but after there’s no check-up until he’s 1!

E at 9 months:

– Sleeps about 7:00-7:00

– Takes most naps (two a day) in his car seat, the stroller, or on Mama’s lap

– Claps randomly throughout the day

– Has a little sense of humor. Think high pitched voices are hilarious. Loves it when I kiss his belly button. Laughs at anything Dad does!

– His favorite food is yogurt.

– Crawls super fast!

– Feeds himself things like scrambled eggs, shredded cheese, pieces of banana, Cheerios, etc.

– Can throw small toys and finds flushing the toilet entertaining.

– Like toy cars/trucks and anything that makes sound.

– Answers to his name and seems to understand the word, “No.”

 

I was telling my mom the other day that he’s the sweetest baby I could have ever dreamed of. ♡

Fall Trip to the Farm

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A couple of Saturdays ago, the whole family got together for a trip to a local farm. It’s most famous for it’s strawberry picking in the spring, but now they have a pumpkin patch, hay rides, and corn maze in the fall.

 

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This is E checking out the tractor. He’s interested in anything with wheels these days.

 

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The hay ride passed this beautiful field of flowers and dropped everyone off at the corn maze, where the big kids had fun trying to find the way out using a map we received. It was actually more challenging than we expected and we got turned around a couple of times!

 

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The adults couldn’t help thinking that it would be really fun (and spooky!) at night with flashlights!

Hopefully there are plenty more fall activities on the horizon…