Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Monday, December 8, 2008
Sunday, November 30, 2008
I've heard numerous times from others that you are "a very special little boy" and believe me, Mom and Dad know that better than anyone but it's fun to hear. There is something about you that brings light, joy and hope to others. Just the other day you brought a tear to Gumpa John's eye because you spontaneously gave him the biggest bear hug you could muster as you said goodbye. You often accuse me of "Too much hugging!" and you follow it up with, "Don't hug me, I'll hug you!" as you squeeze me tight and say a long drawn-out, "Huuuuuuuuuugggg!".
Like your Dad, you seem to know just the right thing to say in such a small number of words. I'll remember forever the first time you said, "You're the best mom in the whole world!". Turns out Dad is the best Dad in the whole world and Sydney (whom you nick-named Siddy) is the best Siddy in the whole world and even Jenny is the best Jenny in the whole world - and we thank you for that! You get me all teary-eyed when you say things like, "We're a great family" and "I like spending time with you, family."
Recently you told me you wanted to buy a gift for Daddy, just because. So we took money from your own piggy bank and I gave you a choice that we could either go to the local gift shop or we could go to the hardware store. Boy do you know Daddy because you chose the hardware store. You walked slowly through every isle, examining everything closely. After wavering between a bird house, a funnel, and vice grips, you decided Dad really needed a funnel. Daddy was so pleased at your thoughtfulness; it turned out he did in fact need a funnel! It's probably no coincidence that you liked the gift too and Daddy lets you use it for bath time.
You have always had an amazing vocabulary and people are often surprised that you are just 3. You even are starting to use your own slang like "whatever" (I won't always appreciate that one!), and "no problem, Mom". "Sure" seems to find it's way in most of your sentences, as in "I sure will miss you" and "that sure is a nice dam" (you're into dams and any sort of area with lots of electrical equipment is a dam to you).
We don't have a lot of children in our neighborhood that you know but you are quite fond of our neighbors. You make regular trips to Dale and Jackie's and Jackie spoils you with cookies and crackers. You enjoy visiting Bob and giving him a run for his money in the countless questions you ask him as he goes about his work.
You are getting much better at understanding, following, and even enforcing rules. You once laughed your way through time outs but you now seem to understand why and when we use it. In fact, you get embarrassed when you are in trouble and put your arm over your eyes thinking we can't see you. You take it upon yourself to ensure others are following the rules too. You put me in time out earlier this year for yelling and you have busted us many times for eating in the family room. You take it upon yourself to be a 3rd parent to Sydney and ensure that she isn't putting anything in her mouth or playing with anything dangerous. When Mom and Dad once turned their head as Sydney sped up the stairs enjoying her newfound freedom, you promptly came to us with your hands at your hips and declared, "You're daughter is going up the stairs!"
What a wonderful imagination you have. Throughout the day we get visits from friends that only you can see: from Tierko and Boo Boo the pigs, Paw Paw the bear and the dancing bunnies with no names. These poor friends have been tortured by me inadvertently sitting on them from time to time. I got a good laugh when you told me that the piggies didn't join us at our friend Heidi's house because you were worried her cat might eat them.
Virtually every day you wear your froggy swim goggles and I enjoy hearing your reasoning why. Some days you are a fire-fighter and the goggles will protect you from smoke, other days they protect you from the wind outside, and still other days they are simply swim goggles "for swimming Mom!" - duh! We get comments from many strangers how much they love your "winter hat and swim goggles" look. You also have a preference for certain clothes but love being naked the most, which we've started discouraging more since it's getting cold. Still, you find a way to use your imagination to justify your naked-ness. It seems every time I turn a corner some article of clothing is now off either due to the tag on it bothering you or for some fun reason like "to help you wade in the deep water in our family room", you say.
You conquered day-time potty training this year at the age of 2 1/2. It went really well, though I'm certain that's what started this naked trend. You have not yet mastered keeping your diaper dry at night. Each morning you say, "It's really hard to keep my diaper dry at night" and we assure you it will come in time. You moved to a big boy bed shortly before turning 2 and we thought you loved it but recently you are telling us otherwise. We now hear talk about ghosts in your room, the need for all lights on, and how you don't like the top bunk. Even our nightly story time, kissing bandit kisses, and songs ("This Little Light of Mine", "Twinkle Twinkle", and "Lullaby") do not fend off ghosts anymore.
This has been a big year for you. You suddenly went from being our baby to being the big brother. You handled the transition so well and have only had a great love for your little sister Sydney. The other day you said to her, "You're my best friend Siddy" and it melted my heart. And boy does she ever love you. She follows you with her eyes like a hawk and squeels with delight at the mere sound of your voice. She does whatever she can to keep up with your antics, and you've already taught her how to climb on furniture.
Your spirit and enthusiasm make life much more fun. It became obvious to me at the zoo that very few people enjoy life more as you yelled with glee to all the kids "LOOK AT THAT SHARK GUYS!" while the other children sat more reserved. You have the highest of highs. But I can not very well summarize your year without mentioning that your spark and enthusiasm also help contribute to the lowest of lows. Your tantrums can rival the best of them and while your persistence will one day serve you well, it tests our patience more than I ever thought possible. The truth is, whether it be a good day or a bad day, you take an extraordinary amount of energy, but I wouldn't change a thing about you. I can only hope that our reserved nature will balance, and not stiffle, you. I'm so proud of the fact that you have so much joy and confidence and I would be surprised if I ever worried about you finding what you want out of life.
We love you very much Samuel. Thank you for being you.
All our love,
Mommy & Daddy
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
I thought this was such a cool idea for art. What a clever way to get hand prints of everyone in the family and serve as unique art at the same time! Now, if only those colors of canvas worked well in my house. I'm sure there is a simple way to make it myself with different colors. If only I had the time.
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
- Still the funniest and wittiest kid I know. And I'm not at all biased :) The things he comes up with just crack me up. He's into his own space now and tells me "I need privacy Mom" when he goes to use the potty. So today he's using the potty with the door closed and suddenly I hear him yell, "Mom! I'm really having a bad hair day!" What? I don't ever recall using that phrase with him but certainly he heard it somewhere!
- He can't wait for Sydney to grow up and wrestle with him. He already plays too rough with her but that little girl loves it, and so does he. He's said to me, "Mom, when Sydney's bigger I can jump on her!" Um, No. However, this little girl is growing FAST and it wouldn't surprise me if one day she were bigger than him.
- Samuel is into being a family right now. He calls out to us, as in, "Come over here with me family!"
- Suddenly Sam looks bigger to me and more like a little boy. He promises me he won't grow up too fast, but I'm sure that is a promise hard to keep.
- As we read stories he interrupts nearly every sentence with, "Excuse me..." and then one of many questions about the picture on that page. I love that he's so engaged. Though we are trying to work on asking his questions after I'm done reading the page so that we can actually get through a book!
- For whatever reason he's not fond of his bed lately and really struggles going down for a nap and bed. I'm sure it's one of many stall tactics in the many years to come. But he seems quite scared and I'm not sure why.
- Samuel will be a fireman for Halloween and he tells me that I should be a pirate.
- Samuel has been much better behaved lately. I've heard the "half year" theory in that kids struggle more around the time of their half birthdays and that has held true for us.
- Sam will be 3 in 1.5 weeks! Say it isn't so! We are having his party at the community center water park. It was a good deal and they provide the cake, balloons, etc. so it was a route I needed to take given everything going on in our lives right now. I'm not what you'd call an easy-going party-planner!
- Baby girl is almost 11 months old! We will have her first birthday party here (I'm hoping by then things will have settled down with my Mom and she'll be well on her way to health!). We'll have family over and do the first birthday cake deal, etc. I only hope that I'll have the energy to put into it like I did for Sam. I made a pretty intricate cake for him and I created a photo montage that she must have as well! Grandma Barb made her a party outfit that I just can NOT wait for her to wear. It is to-die-for cute!
- Sydney has been standing and cruising for a while but I can tell when she's standing she is now giving some thought to trying to walk toward us. She's not quite ready but it's not far!
- Syd still likes to be held, a lot. She'll crawl over to us and pull up on our legs. It's hard to walk anywhere because she's nearly always attached to a leg! Poor baby girl - sometimes I find myself veering away from her as I walk by so that she doesn't stick to me like Velcro. I love her and want to be with her as much as I can but I'm worried I may trip over that little girl one day and let's face it, a mom has lots to do too!
- Sydney has the cutest way of communicating. She'll yell out random one-syllable screams of excitement and Sam seems to "talk" to her in the same language. She is learning to sign and asks for milk all.day.long. And I believe she would like to nurse all day long if I let her!
- She loves it when I lie on the floor and she can crawl all over me. She shrieks with joy when we are down at her level.
- Her hair is getting longer and it's up for debate if it's strawberry-blond/red, or blond.
- She's still not a fan of just anyone holding her but it's much better than 4 months ago.
- I still get the best baby kisses from her.
- She loves to play with her hair while she drinks from a bottle or nurses. It's her way of soothing herself.
- Sydney is still not sleeping well. It's worse lately. I'm certain it's because things have been crazy and I've had a harder time dedicating myself to ensure she's eating dinner really early and that we're avoiding dairy. Yesterday I tried dairy-based (but lactose free) formula with her and what...a...mistake! So it's quite clear to me that she has a sensitive tummy and her reflux is exacerbated by it. I really need to make it a priority to watch my diet (since I still nurse), her diet, and the timing of her food because it only makes a stressful day 10x more stressful if she's uncomfortable and mamas not getting her sleep.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Monday, October 6, 2008
Monday, September 29, 2008
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Friday, September 19, 2008
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Sunday, September 7, 2008
A woman of the cloth. Yup, she wears cloth diapers. Yup, I wash cloth diapers. And YUP, Tad changes cloth diapers. She has VERY sensitive skin so I was hoping this would help. I'm not certain it's helping the sensitive skin like I had hoped, but I do feel good about the 6,000 diapers I won't throw away and the $1500 I'll save. Besides, doesn't she look CUTE?
Her first virus, complete with rash and all. Poor kiddo.
She discovered she loves our Jenny dog.
Started crawling at 7.5 months
And is pulling to a stand too (8 months)!
And is even trying to use her walking toy (look out world!)
This girl loves her fashion. She's infatuated with shoes (I'm a proud mama!)
And she knows how to show off for the camera.
She still LOVES the Baby Bjorn (any time when Mom is holding her is a great thing)
Now that she's on the move she's discovered Sam's toys, which makes her VERY happy and makes Sam not so happy. She also chases us down to tackle us with her big kisses or to insist on being held as she crawls up your leg.
She's teething like crazy. She has 4 teeth and at least 3 more ready to pop any time. Poor girl!
We're still working on getting sleep around here as I feel like I'm as close to seriously sleep deprived as I hope I will ever have to experience. Never a good sign when you fall asleep in a parking ramp (with the car off thankfully!). The "wrap" that keeps her inclined in her crib, as well as new medication, seems to have helped improve her sleep, though we still have quite a ways to go. I'm hoping sleep will return after these teeth that have been trying to surface come.
We went to a specialist (pediatric gastroenterologist) for her blood in her stools and her reflux and I feel that we have a great game plan ahead of us. Luckily, the doctor is not concerned about the blood at this point.
Her separation anxiety has improved dramatically and she's doing great with the nanny. Coming home from work is the greatest because she starts bouncing up and down. She just learned to clap too!
Thanks for your interest! We love our sweet baby girl. Time is going entirely too fast yet I'm excited for her on all the fun things ahead.
PS HAPPY 6TH ANNIVERSARY TAD!!! LOTS OF LOVE!
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Sunday, August 31, 2008
Friday, August 22, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Sunday, August 17, 2008
It's been difficult to talk to too many people about what we are going through with Sydney's reflux. I think people assume my concern is that she "spits up", but that is far from the case. I could care less if she pukes over everything I own. I just hate to see her in pain. It doesn't help that apparently reflux is a common diagnosis these days so when you say your baby has reflux I think people aren't sure if you mean your baby spits up (duh, all babies do), your baby is in pain, or your baby is failing to thrive. It seems reflux is the new colic. Many babies that were once described as being colicky are now better understood to have reflux.
To help control the reflux, Sydney does best when sleeping at an angle. But since she's such a mover and a shaker, she rolls down the bed. Therefore, I've invested in the following sleep wrap designed to hold her in place while the bed is at an angle, based on a recommendation from my friend Jennifer W. So far I think it's making a real positive difference. I don't really like the fact that having the mattress upright at an angle causes her neck to kink to the side, but her chiropractor didn't seem concerned. Yes, my daughter has a chiropractor. I'm willing to try it all to get more sleep.
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
- It's at the right level for toddlers.
- Both the table and train set that it comes with are great in my opinion.
- It makes noises as the train goes through tunnels and over bridges.
- It's a high quality set at the best price I've seen compared to similar sets.
- "Thomas the Tank" trains designed for the Thomas set of this size also fit on this set!
- It has 2 great drawers to store extra trains, another track set - whatever you wish!
- It's a great toy for multiple children to play with and offers less sharing disputes.
- I do not recommend it for kids under 2. When Sam was younger than 2 he just wanted to destroy the tracks. Now that Sam is older he rarely takes the set apart (once every 2 months?)
- When Sam does take it apart, it is a pain to put the tracks back together in the right order - we almost always have to consult the directions. At one point we had thought about screwing the tracks to the table but I wanted to have the option to replace with other sets, though I have yet to buy another set and doubt I ever will.
- The set comes with one battery operated engine. Well, that "little engine that could" is the "little engine that couldn't". It has such a hard time going up one of the hills. We don't mind though, Sam is always talking about helping it up the hill. And frankly usually we have that train without batteries anyway because they always run out.
- The drawer sometimes sticks on the table platform, making it a bit tricky to close all the way.
Thursday, July 31, 2008
Yesterday, Congress voted on the Children’s Safe Products Act which approved a nationwide ban on phthalates in products intended for children under 12. We’ve been waiting for this so we’re happy to say goodbye tophthalates DEHP, DBP and BBP… three chemicals used to soften plastics in children’s toys like bath squirties, soft books and “rubber” ducks. The Act is part of a final Bill to reform and improve the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). This is obviously good news and further confirmation that there is enough doubt in their safety as well as demand for strict regulations on children’s products. And don’t think you didn’t have anything to do with it. Members and supporters of MomsRising.org alone sent in over 100,000 letters to congressman urging them to support the Act.
This ban will take effect in 6 months so in the meantime be on the lookout for products loaded with phthalates. I know I've started loving more "natural" toys to avoid plastic all together. I've enjoyed sites such as Inspired Play and Natural Pod (a Canadian store). Don't get me wrong, we still have plenty of plastic toys that I have no intention of throwing out, but I am trying to get smarter especially about the toys that Sydney is likely to put in her mouth.
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
Sunday, July 27, 2008
Friday, July 25, 2008
Sunday, July 20, 2008
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