Friday, May 22, 2015

Jack: Month Twelve

Our darling Jack-

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Happy birthday!  There is something mysterious about a baby's first year in the world that makes time behave strangely- so many moments move at a snail's pace, yet the year itself seemed to move at the speed of light.... one day you arrived, so unexpectedly but so joyously, and for months just slept and slept, and then what feels like the blink of an eye, one year later you are a healthy happy boy who laughs at everything and can light up a room.  What a year you have given us- we feel so blessed to be your witnesses to all the tiny little moments that will make up your childhood.

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Sleeping:  You've been doing great at sleeping through the night, which is awesome.  Maybe not so awesome is your wake-up time of 5-5:30am.  Seriously it's rough on a working mama who stays up late!  We've tried all kinds of things to break you of that habit- later bedtime, earlier bedtime, white noise, fans, putting stuff in your crib to entertain you when you wake up... apparently Nora went through this same phase but I'm not sure when she got over it (well, to be honest, she still wakes up at 6-6:30am faithfully, but now she entertains herself until 7am).

You've been taking longer naps which is generally a good thing though I do wonder if that's partly to blame for your early wake-ups.  You usually take a one hour nap in the morning and afternoon, but often one of those naps is longer than an hour.  While you start crying when I put you in your crib, you also are usually asleep in about 2 minutes so it's pretty easy.

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Eating: I don't know if it's the overall improvement in your ears (more below), but you are back to eating a lot this month.  Generally finishing your bottles (though those have started to be more infrequent, sometimes only 4 bottles per day instead of 5, about 5 oz each).  We just started putting milk in your bottles after testing out dairy again (first with cheese sandwiches).  So far, so good, but we'll see after a week or so!  You don't seem to mind the taste too much.  Can't wait to not have to make formula bottles anymore.  It is hard, though, to tell whether you are still reacting or not.  Partly because you've just picked up yet another cold and are a bit fussy the last few days.

You still like your starches the most- pancakes, toast, puffs.  You do like some fruit like grapes, cherries, oranges, and sometimes banana. You almost always have a food pouch with meals just to supplement what we are eating (and to actually get some veggies into you). You really enjoy shuffling your hands quickly through the food when you've lost interest in it and thus flinging it all over your seat and the floor- not my favorite new discovery.

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Weight: We'll find out in a week and I'll update then, but I'm guessing around 22.5 lbs.  I've gotten so many comments this month about how big you are for a one year old; when I tell them you were born a preemie and weighed 4.5 lbs at birth, people simply can't believe it (which is funny, because I think 22 lbs is just about normal for a one year old boy!).

Diaper size:  Size 4. 

Clothes size:  Just started moving into 12-18M.  I'd be moving you into that size faster but most of them are summer clothes and it's been kind of cold here the last few weeks (boo).  However, you do still have short legs so you can even still wear some 9M pants though I think they are finally starting to get a little short.  Can't wait to start putting you in more rompers and shorts!

Teeth: Six!  2 bottom and 4 top teeth.  The upper left lateral just broke through a few days ago.  I think your top teeth make you look so much more like a toddler.

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Ears:  You had your ear tube surgery and it went great!  You were pretty mad that you couldn't drink your bottle that morning but they had scheduled you first thing so you didn't have to wait all day or anything, and once we were at the hospital you were so distracted I think you forgot about food for awhile.  Your Nana came to keep me company while they were doing the procedure.  You actually fell asleep on my lap about 5 minutes before the nurses came to get you- then miraculously they just lifted you from my arms and you stayed asleep until they had already done the anesthesia!  So at least that part wasn't traumatic.  You were pretty upset after waking from anesthesia but mostly seemed hungry and pounded two bottles of pedialyte and half your bottle.  You were completely back to yourself about 4 hours later.  The tubes seem to be doing their job- you just seem happier, and though we all picked up colds this last weekend and you had some drainage from your ear (which is what is supposed to happen with the tubes), we're hoping this time you've avoided getting all the pressure built up in there that causes so much pain.  I might get some antibiotic drops just in case.  Now just fingers crossed the tubes stay in there for awhile!

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Milestones: You are cruising everywhere, pulling up on everything, crawling fast, and even standing independently for about 30-60 seconds.  I really think first steps may not be too far off!  The other night you did take a step but you haven't taken a step and kept your balance so we won't count it quite yet.  Hopefully by 13 months.  You also mastered stair climbing this month (going up, definitely not going down, haha), which is one of your new favorite activities. You seem thoroughly put out that we put a gate up so you can't climb them endlessly.  I'm really amazed at how far you've gotten to this point after being a little slower on gross motor until about 10 months old.

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You are saying mama!  Oh it is such a sweet sound.  I even think you use it correctly half the time. ;) You also seem to be figuring out Dada vs Mama though it's not perfectly separated yet.  No other new words but you have figured out gesturing.  Just in the last week, you will wave if we say "bye bye" (very cute because you wave towards yourself rather than the other person, haha), you have started pointing with your index finger, and you figured out the sign for "all done" (your first sign!).

Likes/Dislikes: Likes include- Turning off the light switch, which you think is super funny.  Climbing stairs.  Doing whatever Nora is doing (well, more like putting whatever Nora is doing in your mouth- her puzzle pieces, her Water Wow paintbrushes, her crayons, etc).  Opening and closing cabinet doors.  Baths, with a new focus on the faucet especially when the bath is being filled- you love that thing!  Putting your hand into the baby puffs container and pulling out a whole fistful of puffs (way better than when I feed you them one at a time).  Being tickled.  Peekaboo.  And now we can add... cake.  Definitely a big fan of cake.

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Dislikes include- diaper changes which you still hate with a passion.  Putting on clothes particularly if we need to lie you down, like zip up pjs.  When you can tell dinner is getting close but you are not getting fed right that instant- lots of pulling up on my pant legs and whining and crying.  Not being able to climb the stairs.  Getting put down when you'd rather be carried (then you throw yourself into a "stiff as a board" position and wail).

It's a big month for you this next month because you're going to start at daycare where Nora is going to preschool.  We will miss your nanny and the other little boy she watches a lot, as you just love going to her house every day and you've gotten a lot of love and good care there.  It was a wonderful place for your first year.  But it will be good for us to have both of our kids at the same location, and good for you to start being in a social setting, before separation anxiety gets really bad in a few months.  So hopefully the transition goes okay.

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Jack, it is still hard for me to believe that I have a son, and I'm so incredibly lucky that that son is YOU.  You are a joy and delight and a wonderful light in our lives.  We love you so much and you make our family feel so complete.  Onwards to year two! We can't wait to watch you discover the world.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Vienna Part II

Most of my week in Vienna was spent going to the European Geosciences Union meeting, held at the Austria Center.  I took a ~30 min subway trip from my hotel to get there- Vienna has a great subway system that is easy to use, and the conference provided free passes.

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Monday was my busiest day, as I gave a talk in the morning and then a poster in the afternoon, but I was happy to get the stressful things out of the way early in the week.  I had lunch with an old friend from graduate school and it was great to get caught up.  Monday night I met up with some of my colleagues for dinner at a very yummy Italian place.  One thing that's fun about conferences is that you get to see people you know from all over the world, who you really only see at these meetings where there is a focus in your sub-specialty (on the other hand, it can be pretty miserable if you really know no one or are just starting out in a field or area of research).

Tuesday morning there were no talks I really wanted to see so instead I went to see the morning practice of the Lipizzaner horses.  It was quite cold in their arena but otherwise it was interesting to watch all their fancy footwork!  It would be cool to see the full performance- on the other hand, ticket prices for that event were crazy high, so maybe I got enough of a taste at the practice.

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I had a lunch meeting, and then went to some talks in the afternoon and the poster session, then out to get wiener schnitzel at a famous Viennese restaurant with colleagues.  It is pounded and breaded and fried pork, served with a squeeze of lemon, and it was seriously bigger than my head.  We also had spaetzle and ghoulash.  A very Austrian meal.

Wednesday morning I snuck away to the Belvedere palace.  It is kind of in a sketchy neighborhood, I thought, but the palace itself is quite stunning. The palace is now the home of a wonderful art collection, including some Van Gogh, Monet, Rodin, and the Austrian artist Klimt (who painted the Kiss, a piece I had honestly never seen before but really enjoyed).  The museum offers a useful audio tour for about 5 euros.

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After the museum, I went back to the conference for afternoon talks and the poster session.  I met up with others for dinner at a local pub followed by gelato.  There were some pretty late dinners, we usually didn't even start the meal until 8pm and most nights I didn't get back to my hotel until 11pm.

Thursday I was at the conference the whole day, and in the afternoon I led a group discussion about this project I'm working on.  That night we had a group dinner for our little sub-specialty at a different Italian place.

Friday I went to talks until about 3pm and then it was pretty much over so I went back to my hotel for a little rest.  Conferences can wear you out, even with regular breaks for sight-seeing! ;)  Most people I knew left Thursday or Friday so I didn't have anyone left to hang out with but that was okay.  I had booked tickets for myself for Friday night to the Vienna symphony which was a perfect activity.  It was at Musikverein, and it was a wonderful concert in a beautiful hall.  The most impressive part of all was the 5 (!!) standing ovations that the orchestra and choir got at the end- we clapped for seriously 12 minutes straight and the conductor just kept leaving the stage and then coming back for another bow.  So they take those encores pretty seriously in Vienna I guess.

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Saturday I had the whole day to explore, so after sleeping in a little bit I went to the Schronbrunn Palace.  It is a huge tourist destination and after an hour audio tour I still feel like I only saw a tiny part of the palace, but it was fun to walk around and see all the royal rooms.  The best part though was really the gardens, the fountains, and the so-called Gloriette, a lovely, ghostly structure high up on the hill overlooking the palace.  It was great to hike up there and see the views of Vienna and do some serious people-watching of people from all over the world at this cultural destination.

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The afternoon was spent seeking out some Sacher torte in the city center (I had heard the torte at the original Hotel Sacher was not so good, so I went to the highest rated place I could find on TripAdvisor).  I also did some souvenir shopping for a couple of hours, and then I was pretty tired.  I went to Cafe Diglas for dinner, recommended to me from a friend, and had some fantastic pumpkin soup as well as a salad with some fantastic mozzarella on it.  Then, it was back to my hotel to pack up and go to sleep for my flight home the next morning.

It was a really fun visit and a great mix of work and tourism... sometimes it's a lot harder to see sites while at a conference but Vienna was so easy to get around.  I was really happy that I was able to see most major sites given my limited time.  Of course, most of all I'm grateful to my parents and my in-laws for watching the kids while I was gone so I could go to this conference at all.  Poor Kevin had a terrible work schedule and was working long hours the whole time I was gone.  I sure missed the kiddos the whole week but it is easier when you know they are in such good hands.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Vienna Part I

Life has been busy, thus little posting on the blog.  But I did want to do a couple quick picture post about my trip to Vienna to attend a scientific conference last month.

I'd been to Austria back in 2003 or so with my sister- we stopped in Salzburg and got yelled at by a grumpy old guy and did a very cheesy Sound of Music tour.  But I've never been to Vienna.  I didn't have a ton of time to sight-see because of the conference but I did make some time a couple of the mornings and on the weekend.

I flew from Denver to Chicago, then Chicago straight to Vienna, which was pretty nice, and I even managed to get about 5 hours of sleep which isn't bad for me on an international flight.  But I did arrive at about 8am in the morning and then had most of the day to kill because my room wasn't ready at the Rosa Linde B&B until 3pm (though they did let me store my things and use the wifi and bathroom).

My in-laws had recommended the Rick Steves audio tour app which I had downloaded before the trip, and it turned out to be awesome!  On the first day I took the U-bahn down to the city center and listened to the main City Center tour on my phone.  I love Rick Steves anyway and it was even better to hear his voice and his goofy jokes.  He even recommended good things to eat along the way.  A perfect introduction to the city, and easy to follow because the app comes with maps.

Some highlights:

The Opera House.  I didn't go inside but it was a great place to people watch.  You can watch operas on this big screen outside on some nights, for free.

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Sausage stand. Ordering it was a little scary because I had no idea what I was getting but whatever I got, it was delicious!  Loved all the mustard too.  I actually went back to this same sausage stand at the end of the trip because I enjoyed it so much.

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Followed by the best cappuccino ever. They put whipped cream (panna) on it and their whipped cream is like nothing I've ever tasted... like sugary butter. So thick. Okay sugary butter sounds gross but it really just tasted like the thickest whipped cream you can imagine. Divine. They have these cafes everywhere and in Austria it's a ritual to have afternoon coffee and cake. I also had these thin crepes filled with warm marmalade. It was fantastic.

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After all those sweets it was time to take a side tour of St. Stephan's Cathedral.  I wandered around inside and around the outside for about an hour learning all about it from good ole Rick.  Look how beautiful the roof tiles are!  This is basically the centerpoint of Vienna and the huge square surrounding the cathedral is where I usually met up with other scientists for dinner.

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I also paid a little extra to hike up the tower. No visit to a European city is complete without hiking up some kind of tower to see the views! As long as a narrow winding staircase doesn't get you too claustrophobic, the views at the top are worth it:

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Like other European cities there are many beautiful fountains and sculptures just hanging out on the streets:

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The tour ended near the Hofburg Palace which is now a wide sprawling complex with several museums and gardens.

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I enjoyed the Burggarten with the Mozart statue for a little while (the weather was simply beautiful) before heading back to my hotel for a little rest before heading over to the conference center for the Opening Ceremony.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Jack: Month Eleven

Dear Jack-

It was a busy month.  Both in terms of your parents' crazy schedules but also because you decided this was the month to get moving... all over the place.  I maybe should have updated the previous month, but the day you turned 10 months, you started crawling, and since then have just got more and more proficient at getting around in all kinds of different ways.  We are proud of you and how you are figuring everything out!  You are really catching up in a lot of the gross motor areas.  You are still the cutest baby ever and your little smiles and laughs bring a lot of light to our family.

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Sleeping:  Well we had to re-visit sleep training which sucked but the good news you did start sleeping better for the most part.  Still occasional wake-ups but it's definitely been better than last month.  You have had kind of a persistent cough and phleghm-iness which hasn't seemed to go away with antibiotics or nebulizer treatments (though some minor improvements) so I'm a little worried about that but it hasn't affected your sleeping too much (the photo below is from earlier in the month when you were feeling sick- so you were snuggling in our bed for a couple of hours).

Naps have also gotten mildly better- you've been more consistently taking 2 one hour naps per day.  Sometimes they can be longer or shorter though.

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Eating:  You have really lost interest in bottles and formula this month so I think I need to introduce the sippy cup soon (you've already been drinking water out of a straw cup for months now) and start thinking about what we will transition you to- milk, almond milk, or coconut milk being the likely contenders.  I'll probably start with almond milk until I'm a little more confident that you are over this dairy allergy (by trying cheese or maybe yogurt again and watching for a reaction).  I can't believe we are already to that stage!  I'm not sad about being done with formula but I am sad about being done with bottle-feeding and all the snuggles it entails.  It is something about your babyhood that I have truly enjoyed- those moments of just us together when you are so content to be held.  At the moment though it is more and more becoming a frustrating experience because you lose interest sometimes about an ounce into the bottle and want to play instead.  You do still drink your full 7 oz bottle in the morning usually.  I'm guessing you are taking in about 24 oz per day at this point which I think is normal for 11 months.

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Food-wise, I feel like we haven't been quite as good as we were with Nora at introducing you to a wide variety of foods- it's harder with the dairy limitations to serve you whatever we are having so you usually end up with something pretty plain like plain pasta, bread, cereal, and fruit.  The Chipotle pork bowl is a favorite of yours (just like Nora).  You often have a food pouch with dinner too and can feed yourself the pouch now.

Weight:  I'm guessing you did not go up in weight much this month at all (and possibly you might have even lost some weight) because of all your new movement!  Also clothes seem to be fitting the same.

Diaper Size:  Size 4 fitting well

Clothes Size: Size 9-12M and 12M fitting well (still some 9M pants because you still have short legs).

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Teeth: I think 4 (two bottom and two top- the new ones), though you really don't like me to check and you clench your little lips together when I try to feel around in there, so it's hard to say for sure if anything else is close to cutting through on the top gum.

Ears:  We scheduled you to get ear tubes at the end of this month. I'm nervous about it but I'm hoping it will be as quick and as effective as everyone tells me.  I hate for my baby to go under anesthesia but it would be great for your ears to be able to drain and for you to feel better.

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Milestones: It was a big month for gross motor skills.  You can now crawl all over the place, really fast.  This skill also allowed you to quickly get from lying down to sitting to crawl position, which is a huge step and has made you much happier. :)  You also have gotten to be a pro at pulling up to your feet (and pulling up on everything!), and in the last two weeks you've been cruising along the furniture.  I was on a work trip last week but your grandparents saw you stand several times without holding onto anything- you are getting a lot more stable and you have a lot of interest in being on your feet!  So yes, a lot has changed in a month.  I have no idea when you might start walking- at the rate you are going it could be soon, though I'm going to guess that it will still be closer to 13 months.  We'll see. :)

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With all that focus on gross motor, little has changed with language skills- I still don't think you've said a real word yet but you do babble and like to make raspberries and pucker sounds with your mouth.

You sometimes wave hello or do "so big".  I'd like to work on getting you sign back to me because I think you could do it now, I'm just waiting for it to click.

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Likes/Dislikes:  You like all the same things: baths, car rides, stroller rides; also you like bouncing on things like Rody or your push car, and you like head banging.  You love crawling over and ripping up Nora's puzzle that she's working on, haha (nothing else drives her more crazy so you've figured out the crucial skill of how to annoy your sister).  You like being involved in what we are doing and now that you crawl you go wherever everyone else is so you can be in the center.  You have really liked figuring out how to move and being able to go where you want.  You like snacking on puffs and when I bring out the container of them you grin from ear to ear.

You hate diaper changes, or getting clothes on, or anything where you need to lie still for a moment.  You still get grumpy about 15 minutes before meals when you see us getting food ready.

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We really can't believe our baby is almost one!  This year, your infancy, has gone by in the blink of an eye, particularly the last 6 months.  It is so bittersweet.  I am trying to soak in all the baby rolls and soft baby skin and lovely baby scent now before I wake up one day and you have become a little boy.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Jack: Month Ten

Dear Jack-

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You are becoming a little person now, with your own likes and dislikes, sense of humor, and personality.  It was another month filled with ear infections, but you are such a happy kid most of the time despite feeling sick.  You are seriously the smiliest baby.  You love bouncing up and down... in your exersaucer, in people's arms, on the floor.  I fear already you will be a rambunctious toddler. :)  I have been trying to soak up the little moments with you, my last baby.  Even the middle of the night wake-ups when I'm exhausted and annoyed but tenderness towards your little sighs and closed eyes and chubby fingers holding mine wells up.  Babyhood is hard, but it is so so fleeting.

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A comparison of Jack the day we brought him home from the hospital, and just over 9 months old.

Sleeping:  Some good nights, quite a few not so good ones with the ear infection continuing most of this month, and a rather persistent cold that finally went away.  You sleep on your tummy in your sleep sack much of the night, but often have been having at least one wake-up.  Sometimes you go in the rock n 'play if I want to get you to sleep fast, other times we have tried to be more persistent with keeping you in the crib.  We're not quite in a good place with sleep yet though.  I'm hoping once we can knock this ear infection of yours we will be able to try harder at getting you to sleep more solidly through the night.  One particularly annoying thing is that this last week, you have decided 4 am is the perfect time to wake up for the day.  Yeah, not cool, baby Jack.  Not sure how to break this bad habit but I hope it ends soon.

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Naps are generally still short, usually two a day, with one being about 30-40 minutes and the other being maybe an hour.  Sometimes we get a rare 2-hour nap.  Somehow we ended up with two kids that hate napping. :)

Eating:  You are a good eater and you can eat a lot, though I still sense some pickiness- you tend to really like kind of bland starchy things, like bread and pancakes, rice and pasta.  So that's a bit worrisome.  But, you have been eating more and more table food and now usually have at least part of what we are eating for dinner, plus often a puree pouch (you almost refuse to eat off a spoon anymore).  So that's a good way to get veggies in.  I'm hoping we can try a little more cheese sometime this month and see how it goes?  And also possibly egg whites.  You have been doing well with peanut butter and scrambled egg yolks (though you don't really seem to like eating eggs).  I think one of your favorite things this month was sliced up clementines.  And grapes!  Always a fan of grapes.  You are really good at drinking water from your straw sippy cup.

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You have not gone down in formula amount at all- still drinking about 30 oz per day, 5 bottles.  You have started to insist on holding your own bottles on occasion.

Weight:  I'm guessing about 21 lbs.

Diaper Size:  Size 4 fits you great right now. Actually we still are trying to finish up a box of 3s and they are starting to be a bit ridiculous in how tight they are.

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Clothes Size:  Almost all 9-12M clothes now, though you still wear some 9M pants because you have kind of short legs.

Teeth:  Still just two bottom ones, but now your gums are starting to look bumpy in various places so a new tooth could arrive soon.

Ears: As I've been alluding above, you've had lots of ear problems since about late January.  After 3 rounds of antibiotics and a round of shots (3 days of shots in a row = some kind of torture), I'm hopeful you will soon be rid of it, but we are also going to the ENT next week to discuss getting tubes.  Your dad and I both had tubes as babies, and Nora had like 12 ear infections her first two years, no joke, so honestly I'm hopeful that the tubes may really help you even though I hate to put you through the procedure.

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Milestones:  Well, you are still not crawling, though every day we think it's going to happen.  You are so close (come on, look at this photo above!).  You can reach over, turn on your butt, scoot on your butt, get on hands and knees... and then you try to move forward... and fall on your tummy and can't get back into a hands/knees position.  But just in the last couple of days I think you are getting closer on that front too... the nanny saw you finally move from your tummy into a sitting position, a move I've been waiting to see for a long time. :)  Hopefully you will get better at it soon!

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You have had a lot of progress in standing and stepping this month.  You pull to your knees easily and occasionally to your feet, though you are still figuring it out.  But you love standing up and holding onto things, and have taken a strong interest in push toys.  You still need some help to take steps while you are pushing, but you have started lifting up your legs better when stepping.  Actually the most frustrating thing this month for me is that you always want to be in a standing position, but you can't do it by yourself, so you whine a lot until I come and help you.  Sometimes we think you will be a baby who walks before they crawl.

You have started to do some hand movements, like "How big is Jack?  SO big!" especially when in your high chair.  You also will sometimes wave and sometimes hi-five, though it's not terribly consistent.

You still mostly just say "dadada" (no mamas yet sadly), but I think you are actually close to saying "cat".  Whenever the cats come by you get super excited and you say something that sounds like "dat" or "at".  You don't get the "c" sound but the only time I hear you say the "t" sound is when the cat is by you so I legitimately think you are trying to say the word.

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Likes/Dislikes:  You love eating.  You can get really grumpy if you are hungry.  But usually by the end of the meal you are all giggles and smiles. Or if I break out the cheerios when we are out and about, you seriously squeal in delight. You love baths and this month you have started going crazy with splashing.  I can't say Nora is too fond of it (since you take baths together) but you seem to love seeing how much water you can get everywhere.

You've just started to develop some stranger danger, though you are still pretty easy going around new people.  There's just a lot more worried looks towards me and less smiling when new people are around.

You love bouncing.  You love being tickled on your belly and sides.  You like exploring and moving around, and I think you will be very active once you finally figure out this movement thing.  You have started to enjoy being read stories, particularly ones with flaps (Dear Zoo is a big favorite right now).  And you really like "Moo Baa Lalala" just like Nora did.

You do not like: drying off after the bath, getting pajamas on, diaper changes, having to wait more than 2 seconds for your bottle, and being ignored.

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We seriously cannot believe it's only two months until your birthday!  You just got your first haircut and it just reinforced how soon you will be turning from a baby into a toddler.   We love you, little man.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Miracle Night Potty Training

So this happened... Nora night-trained herself!  Here I was expecting to have a kid who wore pull-ups at night for the foreseeable future (she's never once woken up with a dry pull-up.  Ever.).  And then a few weeks ago she out of the blue told us she wanted to wear undies to bed instead of a pull-up.

I've read that there's not a lot you can do to potty train a kid overnight, they either have developmentally developed the ability to hold their bladder that long (and the ability to wake themselves up if they need to go) or they haven't.  This article says that only 2/3 of kids age 3 and under can control their bladders at night and up to 15% of 6 year olds still can't.  So even though Nora day-trained a year and half ago, we've never pushed the night training.  Like I said, it's not like she was waking up dry or anything so there seemed to be no indication she was ready.

So, thinking it was never going to work but wanting to encourage her since she was asking, we bought some disposable bedmats and gave it a try.  She also has a froggy potty in her room to use in the middle of the night.  That night and ever since she's stayed dry in her undies the entire night!  She did have one accident (the one night we didn't insist she use the potty before bedtime) but one accident in like three weeks is pretty amazing in my book, especially because this whole thing literally came out of nowhere and we did not have to use any parenting skills whatsoever.  I had even hatched a plan to try to "gently encourage" her into it this summer, but now it's not needed and that makes me super happy. :)  Even better, no more buying pull-ups!  Now we're keeping all our fingers and toes crossed that this dry-at-night business is here to stay.

On an unrelated note (and gratuitous photo opp), these two kids crack me up.  They are slowly starting to interact a little more and it warms my heart!

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Saturday, February 28, 2015

Snow Ice Cream

Denver managed to topple the February snowfall record this year, from the previous record in 1912.  All this snow calls for something yummy.... snow ice cream!

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You definitely want to use fresh white snow.  Also, this makes probably 4 servings of ice cream, so you can adjust the recipe if there are just two of you (it doesn't keep well and should be eaten immediately!).

Ingredients:

1 cup milk (chilled)
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 pinch salt
8 cups snow

Mix first 4 ingredients together.  Scoop up snow and mix with milk mixture.  Immediately serve.  It's delicious topped with sprinkles.  Nora and I both thoroughly enjoyed this snowy treat!

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