Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 7, 2012

21 Months!

Weight: 27 pounds
Height: 35 inches

If I had to choose one word to describe you this month it would be mischievous. You're always up to something! Earlier this month, I chased you across the backyard (barefoot and in my pajamas) after you sneaked out the back door and took off running. Another time, when I was trying to rescue a necklace that you'd taken from me, you pointed up at the ceiling to distract me, then hid it in the bookshelf. I could hardly believe it! I have to admit I was pretty impressed with your higher order thinking skills, however, I fear what kind of pranks you'll be pulling when you're older. Other shenanigans include smuggling a cat toy from your aunt and uncle's house, in your Elmo backpack, and nabbing a block of cheese from the counter and taking a big bite out of it.
I can't forget to mention your trouble making in music class. You're usually a good boy when we go to school, but there's something about music class that brings the devil out in you. Last week you ran around the room screaming (I think it was your version of singing), threw instruments over the gate, into the hallway, and hit a 4.5 year old and made him cry when he tried to take your drum. (His mistake I guess). I think the teacher could sense my distress because she gave me a pep-talk at the end of class. Apparently, this type of behavior is typical for boys your age, especially when they're "movers and a shakers" like you (in her words). I must be out of my mind because I signed us up for another semester... Hopefully, she is right in that "this too shall pass."

I do have to say that although you are often a stinker, you can also be about as sweet as they come. I will never tire of your little voice saying "ma-ma," hearing your silly giggle, and your hugs and kisses make everything okay (which you use to your advantage). I also have to admit that most of your hijinks are pretty hilarious (and harmless). You definitely keep daddy and I entertained.

You are still a "climber" and have enjoyed having a new room to explore. Our new bathroom has two major design flaws. First, you can easily reach my make-up. You've already destroyed one of my eye liners and have experimented with make-up application on more than one occasion.
Second, you can climb into the sink from the toilet. This scares me to death because the marble floor would not make for a very soft landing... Keeping the door shut would normally solve that problem, but you're now tall enough and strong enough to open doors whenever you please (as we realized when you let yourself out the backdoor).
Another one of your favorite activities, which is far less dangerous, is taking a bath. Up until a few weeks ago, we still bathed you in your baby tub (mostly because our old bathtub was so old and gross). Now you get to take a real bath in the big tub! You would stay in all night if we let you!
You've also started to develop your own sense of style. You have a new-found obsession with a hat I bought you a few months ago. You wanted nothing to do with it for a long time, but one afternoon you woke up from your nap screaming "hat!" When I went into your room, you were pointing to the checkered hat hanging from your closet door knob. You put in on and layed back down. For the next couple of days you wouldn't leave home without it and refused to wear any of your winter hats.
We had another reunion with the girls from your very first baby group. It's always so much fun to see how much you've all grown! We went to Edinborough Park where you climbed Adventure Peak (you were in heaven) and played in the gym. We did have a minor incident that involved you tackling and pounding on a much bigger boy that was trying to push you out of the way. I don't think he could believe that you fought back. I quickly grabbed you before it got ugly... Other than that, you had tons of fun! So much so, that I bought a season pass. It will be a great activity this winter (as long as no one tries to mess with you)!
The holiday season is officially upon us. We had two family gatherings on Thanksgiving- one with daddy's side of the family and one with mine. You seemed to enjoy all the hustle and bustle, but had a melt down after we'd been at the second celebration a few hours. It cut our visit a little short, but you still had time to enjoy some turkey and stuffing and even watched the snow falling with pa-pa over your after-dinner drinks.
The morning after Thanksgiving we introduced you to "Buddy" the Elf. He was sent to our house by Santa to make sure you're being a good boy. Each night he reports back to Santa and is hiding in a new spot in the morning. While I don't think you quite understand the concept of behaving (obviously), you LOVE looking for him in the morning. It's a really fun game- you usually look in all the places he's hid in the past and then we give you hints to find his new hiding spot. Once you find him, you shower him with kisses and insist on carrying him around the rest of the day.
Black Friday is also the day we decorate the house and put up the Christmas tree. I was really afraid of what you would do to the Christmas tree this year. I had visions of a fallen tree and smashed ornaments, but surprisingly you've shown a lot of restraint. So far, you've only broken two ornaments!
You're really into Santa this year, as well. Whenever you see anything Santa related you squeal and shout out "ho-ho." We had some family pictures taken and you got to meet him in person. The photographer had an elaborate plan of sneaking Santa in behind you so she'd be able to get some pictures before you saw him, in case you got scared. That turned out to be completely unnecessary- you warmed up to him right away.
We also went to Linden Hill's Reindeer Days where we listened to an old-fashioned barber shop quartette, drank some hot cocoa, saw a couple of Reindeer (Comet & Cupid), and shopped for a few gifts.
I'm looking forward to the upcoming month. I don't think you even know how much fun is in store (I'm pretty sure you don't remember anything from last year's Christmas). Tonight, I think we're going to check out the Hollidazzle parade!

Happy 21 months, peanut!
Love, Mom

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

20 Months!

Weight: 26.5 pounds
Height: 34.75 inches

This has been a long and stressful month, kiddo! It started out with daddy being gone for an entire week. Upon his return, he began the arduous task of demolishing our main bathroom. (He had seen this done on many HGTV shows and thought it would be "fun"). He got about a third of the way there before he wisely decided to leave the rest for our contractor. For the past two and a half weeks, it has been absolute chaos in our house- sledge hammers, saws, and drills... The bathroom shares a wall with your bedroom so naps have only existed in the quiet of our car. I'm sure we have toured the entire Twin Cities metro area...twice. Not only has it been noisy, but our entire house is scattered with various building supplies and dislocated items from the bathroom and linen closet. Plus, there is a fine layer of dust over EVERYTHING!! It's enough to drive a person crazy- especially a person who's having to deal with a very sleep deprived toddler (that would be you). You've been very interested in what's going on in the bathroom. Every night you and daddy spend at least 20 minutes looking over what has been done that day...
You also like to help. Here, you are "painting" over the spot we had to fix when you slammed the door into our new sheet rock. I guess it's our fault for not putting in a door stop immediately, oops...
If the bathroom mess wasn't enough, two weekends ago you developed a fever that we couldn't break. We were only able to get it down to 101 by alternating Tylenol and Ibruprofen every three hours. Then, Sunday evening you woke up with huge, angry red welts on your outer thighs and upper arms. We were afraid you were having some kind of allergic reaction so I called the nurse line. The nurse said we had to bring you to the ER. Daddy and I decided to take you to Methodist Hospital, instead of Children's, because it's much closer. This was a huge mistake. You were poked and prodded for over two hours. All of the nurses and doctors were really nice, but they couldn't seem to figure out what was wrong with you. The main doctor said you were too young to have strep, so it must just be a virus. I was told to keep you at home, until the fever broke, and continue giving you fever reducers and lots of liquids. You and I were quarantined to our "house of horror" all day Monday and Tuesday. Despite the fever, you were just as rambunctious as ever. I could only get you to nap if you were laying on top of me.
Thankfully, by Wednesday (Halloween) you had been fever free for 24 hours. We went to our Toddlin' Tykes class and daddy and I took you trick-or-treating that evening. You were your normal self all day Thursday, but when Daddy got you undressed for your bath he noticed a rash over your entire body. This one was red and consisted of tiny bumps that felt like sand paper. It was 7pm so we rushed to Urgent Care before it closed at 8pm. When we were finally able to see the doctor she took one look at the rash and asked if you had been tested for strep when you were at the hospital. I told her what the ER doctor had said and she said that was wrong. Apparently, it's pretty uncommon for kids as little as you to get strep, but it is possible. She immediately ran a strep test, which came back positive. The rash was caused by a toxin produced by the strep infection since had been untreated for so long. At this stage strep is actually called Scarlet Fever. Visions of children dying on the Oregon Trail flashed into my mind- I was horrified. The doctor assured us that it's not a dangerous condition anymore, as long as it's treated with antibiotics. Thank God for modern medicine (and remote control beds to help pass the time)!
The month was rounded out with daylight savings time, which has moved your 6am wake-up time back to 5am. Once our house is restored to normalcy (which will hopefully be very soon) I will be working hard to get you back on a schedule! Ideally, one that involves you waking up when it's light out and includes a nice long afternoon nap. We can all dream!

Despite the madness, there have been some pretty awesome moments this month. I absolutely love the random acts of affection that you give out now. You grab my hand and kiss it or come in for a quick cuddle in the middle of your constant playing. You also get a kick out of pushing my head and daddy's head together so we kiss. The highlight of the month, though, happened when Daddy was out of town. You had been cranky all morning (I think because you missed your morning bonding time with him). I was feeling a little deflated, until the three most amazing words came out of your mouth- "I-wuv-you!" You had said this before, with our prompting, but never unprovoked. It was even accompanied by a hug, so I think you knew what you were saying. I'll remember that moment as long as I live.

It's gotten much colder, so we haven't been able to get outside as much as I'd like (and definitely not as much as you'd like). I don't know what we're going to do this winter! We were able to squeeze in a few walks and park play dates, though.
You also "helped" us rake leaves. I wonder if you'll find this chore as fun when you're old enough to really help...
Halloween was really fun this year. Daddy and I picked out a monkey costume for you because we thought it was cute. When you tried it on and saw yourself in the mirror you went ballistic! You screamed "George!" and showered yourself with kisses. Silly us. Although you have become completely obsessed with Curious George, that hadn't even crossed our minds. So instead of just a plain old monkey, you became George. The Saturday before Halloween you and I went to a Pumpkin Party at the community center. You and your friend across the street had the same costume!
You were pretty tired that morning, so we didn't stay long enough for the costume parade, but you did get to meet your 2nd favorite character- Elmo!
On the way out, you and your mini-George tried to hide from me in a locker. Typical George behavior I guess...
Notice in the pictures above that your mini-me (aka Curious George) goes with you everywhere. You found him at Grandma White's house and haven't put him down since. Like I said, you're obsessed. It started with a book from Grandma Hacker. Then, we made the mistake of letting you watch the show. Now, whenever you walk past the TV you point and say "George? George?" in a voice that becomes more and more demanding if your request is not granted. I have to admit, we watched far too many episodes when you were stuck inside with strep (thank you Netflix), but I'm afraid you're completely addicted now.

On Halloween we had a costume party with your ECFE class and later that afternoon we met up with your friend Christopher who was also dressed as a monkey!!
That evening, we went trick-or-treating for real (as opposed to last year when we carried you to two houses). You walked right up to the doors and knocked.
However, when people answered, instead of saying "trick-or-treat" and waiting patiently for a piece of candy, you'd barge right in. At this house you grabbed a clock off their table- thankfully our neighbors like you and didn't press charges. Although you weren't able to keep the clock, you did score a pretty cool truck from another neighbor.
Although some times have been trying (hello terrible twos), it is so rewarding to see you grow and learn each and every day. It's hard to believe that last Halloween you were still just a little baby that could fit into a pumpkin. It makes my heart hurt.

Happy 20 months, peanut monkey!
Love, Mom

Sunday, October 7, 2012

19 months!

Weight: 27 pounds
Height: 34.75 inches
Shoes: 6.5 extra-wide
I'm happy to see that your weight is starting to catch up with your height. That might be due to all the chilli and curry you've been eating lately... You've gained about two pounds since your 18 month check-up! I also had to include you shoe size this month because I finally got your feet measured and bought you some proper shoes. For the past few months I'd been struggling to get any shoes on your feet, and once I did, you would pull them off after a few minutes. A very helpful sales woman at Stride Rite let us know that you not only have extra-wide feet, but also very thick feet. She showed us two pairs of shoes (in the entire store) that would work for your special feet and also suggested the thinnest socks. All this time I had been stuffing you into shoes that were too small in thick, cushy socks. I felt horrible!! Needless to say, we purchased both pairs. You love them so much that you want to put them on as soon as you get out of bed. (What a difference a proper fit makes!) Aren't they cute?
It's hard to believe that just a month ago we were spending our days at pools and lakes... Fall is here and with it came a new schedule. We started three new classes this month. We have Toddlin' Tykes on Wednesdays, Music Together on Fridays, and you go to school (all by your little self) on Tuesday mornings. This proved to be a more difficult transition for me than for you. I had mixed feelings about it since you're only a year and a half, but I felt like it would be good for you. The week before, we met your teacher, checked out the classroom, and got a copy of your schedule. You and I talked about "school" for several days and about all the fun things that you would do there. Even so, I was stressed about it, afraid that you'd be traumatized by my absence. The night before, I was about ready to cancel... When it was time to leave on the big day, you grabbed your blanket and lunch box, walked to the back door, and said "let's go!" Hmmm.... You seemed excited; maybe this wasn't going to be so bad.
When we got there, you immediately saw your friend from across the street, and shouted her name. You ran right in and didn't look back. I reassured your teacher to call me if you became upset. I left, feeling a little heart broken, and went for a quick rollerblade. I wanted to get home in case you needed me. I bussied myself getting things done around the house. I never received a call. When I went to pick you up, I expected that you'd be thrilled to see me. Not so much. You didn't want to leave. In fact, you were having so much fun playing with the toy kitchen set that you had a tantrum when I picked you up to go. The teacher said you did a great job and that you're very confident. She couldn't believe that you just turned 18 months. I left feeling very proud.

You've been several times now and it's going great. In fact, I think you love school (you get that from me). It's a win-win because I'm thoroughly enjoying having three whole hours to myself Tuesday mornings. It's pretty amazing how much I can accomplish in such a short amount of time. Last week, daddy and I even snuck away for a quick brunch. It felt like we were on vacation.

Your favorite words this month are no, down, more, and eyebrow. The first two are often directed at KG. You really enjoy bossing him around. Thank goodness he's so patient with you! He even tolerates you walking him around the house on his leash and lets you use him as a pillow. He's a pretty awesome big brother! Who said Jack Russell's aren't good with kids? I beg to differ!
You continue to live up to your nickname "Action Jackson." Apparently, you fell three times at school last week. When I came to pick you up you had a cut by your eye and a scratch and bruise on your cheek. I even had to sign an accident report.
About a week before that, when I put you down for a nap without your sleep sack, you managed to climb dive-bomb out of your crib. I heard a loud thud, followed by a scream. When I entered your room you were kneeling on the floor. You stopped crying once I picked you up, which led me to believe that you were okay- just a little scared. Thankfully, all of your limbs were spared. I guess you'll be sleeping in your sleep sack until I'm ready to transition you into a toddler bed, or until you figure out how to climb out with that on. I wouldn't put it past you... You also had a fall at the park the other day that left you with a skinned elbow.
It doesn't help that you're a climber... These pics both look like accidents waiting to happen. What are we going to do with you? I've definitely thought about dressing you in full hockey gear or making you a suit out of bubble wrap.
Daddy and I have had so much fun doing "Fall" things with you over the past few weeks. We took a trip to Minnetonka Orchards where you sipped some apple cider, ran away from mommy and daddy, got your face painted, and made friends with a goat.
You love watching the Vikings with daddy in your Adrian Peterson jersey. He even taught you how to cheer "touchdown," which is relevant this year because they're actually scoring touchdowns...
You also love playing in leaves...
...except when they cause you to slip.
This morning, we celebrated your 19-month birthday at the Arboretum. It was a cold, but beautiful day! We couldn't find any of your winter hats from last year so you had to wear one of daddy's. Surprisingly, it fit pretty well!
Happy 19 months, peanut!
Love, Mom