Saturday, January 9, 2016

Haddie: 2015 Wrap Up

Dear Haddie,
At almost 2 years old...
  • You weigh 23 pounds and have finally moved up to 18-24 month clothes, although some of them are still a little big and pants are long on you
  • You sleep from about 7:30pm-7:00am and take one nap at 1pm (usually 2 hours). You have started fighting your naps on occasion, but overall you are still an easy sleeper
  • Your favorite foods are pickles, cheese, yogurt, broccoli, french fries, any type of cracker/carb, pizza and bananas
  • You are climbing EVERYWHERE.
  • You currently do not like taking a bath, mostly because you hate having your hair washed
  • You have started repeating a lot more words and it's so adorable. I love hearing your sweet little voice!
  • You think it is so funny to give me kisses for some reason. Every time you do, you burst out in giggles
  • You are incredibly nurturing. Your favorite Christmas gift was the baby stroller we got for you, you push your baby around all day and feed her a bottle and kiss her. You also like to sit in the stroller yourself to watch tv!
  • You still like to do anything that Titus is doing
  • You really love playing on the piano
  • You still get upset with I drop you off at school or the church nursery, but it only lasts for a couple of minutes
  • You can be BOSSY! When you want something, you want it right. then.
  • We still change your clothes at least twice a day because you are so messy
  • You love dancing! Even if someone just says "let's dance!" you'll still dance without music. But anytime you hear music you start moving back and forth subconsciously 
  • You want to be outside all the time, but don't understand the concept of being cold. You get so mad if I don't let you go out when it's raining and yucky!
  • Your favorite show is Masha and the Bear. You do so much better sitting still for a movie or show than Titus did at this age
  • At any given time you are usually carrying around 2-3 pacifiers
  • You are still a little shy around strangers but when we see friends (especially Ms. Stephanie and Ms. Heather) you go up and give great big, cuddly hugs.
  • Your favorite activity is definitely running around and being one of the big kids. If Titus and the big boys are chasing each other through the house you are running right alongside them, even though you don't know what they're doing!
  • Your dimples are getting more obvious and they are so adorable!
  • Everytime you touch something or climb on something you are not supposed to we tell you no, and then when you stop you start clapping and say, "yay!!" as if cheering for yourself will make us forget you were disobeying
  • You will keep a bow clip in but you HATE having your hair in a ponytail or pigtails. Which is a real shame because it is so adorable!

  • This was the first year that you could really participate in the holidays and it was so much fun to see the joy that you and Titus had spending time with family and opening gifts. You didn't really care about the gifts at all, Titus actually opened most of yours, but you sure loved the Christmas tree and trying to take off the ornaments without getting caught! Every time you smile you light up the room, there's not a single person you've met that doesn't adore your sweet personality and shy little smile. Your big blue eyes and strawberry blonde hair are such a stunning combination and people comment on it allllllll the time. I guess you'll just have to get used to that, Baby Love! We feel so blessed to have you in our lives, thank you for multiplying the joy of our family.

Titus 2015 Wrap Up

Dear Titus,
At almost 4 years old...
  • You are still pretty small for your age, which I think has helped me stay in denial about how old you're getting :) You wear 2T in pants and 3T in shirts, although those can be too big for you sometimes.
  • You're really interested in directions right now. Are we turning right or left? Which direction are we driving?
  • Your favorite toy is the marble tower we got you. You make all kinds of "machines" with the pieces and like to watch YouTube videos of marble runs that other people have created
  • You also really like drawing "machines" on your drawing board and they are usually replicas of marble machines you have seen on youtube.
  • Another favorite activity is anything that is arts and crafts. You got a paint spinner for Christmas and you ask to use it at least once a day every day (it's basically a piece of paper that you put paint on and spin it, then it turns into a tie dye pattern of sorts). You call it your "paint machine" because everything is a machine right now!
  • Your favorite drink is chocolate milk and your favorite foods are pickles, tomatoes, pizza, french fries, almost all berries, cereal, waffle with peanut butter and popsicles (of course!) You have recently started being a much better eater, requesting things like salad, peas, broccoli, or other "vegabulls" (which generally means stir fry veggies). I have been very impressed with your willingness to try healthy food!
  • You LOVE school (Mother's Day Out). You have been so upset over Christmas break that we haven't gone to school at all.
  • You love to play a game called "You Better Run" with Daddy, where Daddy says, "you better run!" and then you take off down the hall and he tries to hit you with a ball and you fall down. Then you switch and try to hit daddy AND YOU BOTH LOVE IT.
  • You have moved from fit throwing to whining, and I definitely think I might have liked the fit throwing better. I have learned that every new age has it's own stage, but this is one that I'm ready to leave behind!
  • You really like to reinforce the rules with Haddie, it's like having a 3rd parent around (except you are even more strict than we are! ha)
  • You still don't really like it when anyone sings or dances around you (especially if it's loud)
  • You went through a phase where you were afraid of monsters and would wake up having nightmares, thankfully that has passed for the most part (sometimes there are still scary shadows)
  • Your favorite movies/shows are Team Umizoomi, Little Einsteins, Curious George, Madagascar: Penguins Movie, and Horton Hears a Who
  • You get VERY stir crazy if we don't get out of the house every day. I can already tell we are going to have to get creative this winter!
  • Bedtime routine has gotten much easier but you are really fighting naptime now. You probably skip your nap at least twice a week so instead I let you have "quiet time" in your room where you either build machines with your marble run or play your letter apps on the iPad.
  • You tell me that your best friends are Garrison, Brooks and Rozy
  • Our current discipline struggle is learning to obey the first time. Especially when you are told to go to timeout, you try to run to the other parent and have them "save" you from timeout (all while screaming). Big no no.
  • You are in an extra cuddly phase. You are always climbing into my lap or asking for longer snuggles at bedtime. Today I was doing my makeup and I heard you call out from the living room, "Mommy, will you come cuddle with me?" You literally want to hug and cuddle and snuggle on the couch ALL THE TIME. I love it forever.
  • You still have trouble not losing control of your emotions when you are frustrated, but usually a hug, a deep breath and some "quiet time" on my lap or in your room helps you calm down. You have gotten better at expressing yourself with words instead of just exploding when you're upset
  • Your favorite book right now is Dragons Love Tacos
  • You say "chechup" instead of ketchup and it's adorable. I also love hearing you stretch your vocabulary and say things like "humongous" for the first time
  • You have FINALLY realized it's nice to say "I love you too" in response to someone saying I love you. It's so cute and lovely and I try to squeeze it out of you at least 5 times a day
Before I go to bed at night I always come in and check on you (mostly because you rarely ever have the cover on and 50% of the time are sideways or upside down in your bed). But after I tuck you in I always push your hair out of your face and kiss your sweet cheeks. This is the only time where I catch a glimpse of the baby you used to be; the chubby little cheeks, the dimples in your hand, the way you curl up with your stuffed broccoli. Sometimes I slip my hand in yours and even in your dreams you squeeze my hand right back and pull me close to you. We love you to the moon and back, little man.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

When Are You Going to Have Another Baby?

Titus is 3.5 years old and Haddie is 1.5 years old and we have reached the point when people start asking us, "soooo.... Are you thinking about having another baby?" I get it, I really do, because we have always wanted a third and it's about the time that conversation begins (and the time that feeling in my momma heart starts to think a baby sounds cute and squishy and doable again). But the thing I can't get out of my mind, the thought that chases me down and grows into a softball size lump in my chest is this: I'm not ready to have another baby because I'm not ready for my first baby to grow up. 

We have been discussing timelines and birth orders and relationships between siblings... (All of which only matters slightly since we probably won't actually be able to "schedule" when we get pregnant, I trust that God is bigger than any Type A plan I might come up with). But if I'm being honest, like 'don't-like-to-say-it-outloud-because-it-hurts-me honest,' I struggle with the timeline discussion because it always goes like this: "well if we had a baby in X amount of time, then Haddie would be X old and Titus would be X old." There are a lot of practicals that go into this 'distance between siblings' discussion (as a SAHM, can I handle 3 at home? Will Haddie be potty trained? Am I getting enough sleep currently to even consider adding an infant?) But one of my main struggles in fully committing to a third is that honestly the idea of Titus being old enough to go to school kills me and make me want to crawl into his bed every single night and sleep there forever. 

Right now we're in this sweet spot; he can communicate and obey (if he's in the right mood), play independently, he's an incredibly sweet and protective big brother and most importantly to his mommy, he thinks I've hung the moon. Every machine he builds, every "marble city" he imagines, every bedtimes story he dreams up, he's always begging me to participate in. But in just 18 more months (oh my, literally felt chest pains typing that, ugly cry about to begin) he will start school and spend more waking hours with someone else rather than me. All of his excited exclamations and creative thoughts and funny observations, those won't be exclusively mine anymore. And it kills me because even on the hardest days, that's MY baby.

So what does this have to do with the possibility of baby #3? I guess in some far off corner of my mind that is usually buried under rationality and practicality, I'm putting off thinking of baby #3 because I'm hoping baby #1 (and baby #2 when she stop feeling like a baby) will just stay little forever and always be more excited to see me than anyone else on the earth. It's easy to be in denial about how quickly your kids are growing up. But when you sign up for another pregnancy, you commit to a very firm 9 month timeline in which you know exactly what will happen: everyone, mommy, baby in utero, and older siblings, will get bigger and older. You can't help but shift attention to the newest arrival that will require so much of your time and energy in the beginning, which inevitably divides what you can offer to those around you. 

If there has been one phrase I've caught myself saying lately it's this: motherhood is weird. It's honestly such a melting pot of emotions, ranging from "I'm about to pull my hair out if you jump on my head/stomach/leg one more time" to "that giggle you've had since you were a baby will forever undo me- never, ever change." It's weird. It's everything and all the things, happening in the very same moment. You can't dissect it and you can't control it, it's an unconditional heart-bursting love while also being a crazy strong desire to be be selfish and left alone (especially when you need to use the bathroom). 

But this I know, I have less than a year and a half left with my first baby (whether we have a new baby or not) and I get to choose what those days look like. As much as I'd like to say otherwise, I'm sure some of those moments will be impatient and frustrated and angry. But my hope is that what my sweet baby boy remembers are the days when his mommy climbed under the covers at naptime and read him book after book and tickled him until neither of us could breathe anymore. That the picture in his mind would be of me building hundreds of marble towers with him and clapping and cheering when we finally got it right. That the soundtrack playing in his dreams would be daddy's record player blaring Christmas music while we dance like uncoordinated fools in the living room. 

To my forever baby; I love you to the moon and back, to infinity and beyond, forever and ever. Once day you will grow up and maybe be a big brother to many, but you will always be the first to capture my heart in a way I didn't know was even possible. 

Psalm 113:9
He gives the barren woman a home, making her the joyous mother of children. Praise the Lord!

{Photos courtesy Courtney Halligan Photography}

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Haddie Mae: 1.5 years old

Dear Haddie,
At 1.5 years old...

  • You weigh 23 pounds and are in the 25th percentile for height (up from 15!) and in the 50th for weight. Bigger than brother was at this age! But still a little thing :)
  • You wear size 4 diapers and 18 month clothes (still 12m in pants)
  • You sleep from about 7:30pm-6:45am and take one nap at 1pm (usually 2 hours). For the most part you are easy to put down and fall right to sleep
  • You love condiments and dipping, you get really mad if we eat chips and salsa but don't offer you any salsa
  • You are very adventurous! Not much phases you when it comes to climbing, sliding, or any other playground activity. You will climb up tall slides that Titus won't even go down and just go for it without even blinking!
  • You HATE having your teeth brushed
  • You love waving at strangers, but you don't really want anyone to talk to you. Such a flirt!
  • You call your pacifier your "ba" and you like to carry around 2-3 at any given time. You also go to sleep with one in your mouth and one in your hand (plus a couple more in the crib!). Generally, we are trying to keep the pacis to bedtime, sick days, or car rides.
  • One of your favorite activities right now is opening drawers and pulling things out. You like stacking cups, emptying toy bins, playing in my makeup drawer. Anything you can explore, you will!
  • You love playing in the backyard and especially love the slide we have. You also recently learned how to jump on the trampoline
  • You have started saying so many words! Cat, dog, Bosco, momma, dada, bubba, Nanay, Mimmy, Mamaw, mine, more, down, please, thank you, moo, ROAR!, wheee!, uh-oh, bye bye, hello...
  • You started going to Mother's Day Out two mornings a week so I can work on Etsy orders and they say you have a great time! Sometimes you get upset when I drop you off, but you are always playing and happy when I pick you up
  • You walk around "talking" on my cell phone saying the cutest little gibberish
  • Your love to paint, draw, color, stamp... anything crafty (and messy, of course!)
  • You are not phased when it comes to fit throwing. You threw a 20 minute fit on our walk yesterday because the neighborhood cat didn't want to play with you.
  • You love giving me kisses, but not nearly as much as I love receiving them!
  • You like to pretend to eat my toes and then I gasp and you giggle hysterically 
  • We change your clothes probably 3 times a day because you are ALWAYS dirty, either with food or literal dirt
  • You pretend to write things on Titus' writing board just like he does and then you "tell me" all about what you wrote (a lot of very concentrated gibberish)
  • You still hate vegetables but you will eat pickles and baby food pouches. Some of your favorite foods are cheese sticks, pizza, crackers (basically any bread or carbs), bananas, waffles, apples, yogurt, and meat
  • You love your Dada and get excited every time he walks in the door, I think you will be a Daddy's girl
  • You never want to hold my hand except if you really need help going downhill or something. Other than that you are Miss Independent! 
Haddie Mae, you are the best. You are hilarious, sweet, adventurous, flexible, laid back, independent, sassy, and just plain adorable. You love your brother and ask for him as soon as your light is on in the morning, but you also know how to stand up for yourself and push him or runaway when he is picking on you (that's your red hair coming out!). You are a cuddler by nature and love to sit with mommy or daddy and just curl up for a bit. I love rocking you to bed at night because you lay down on my chest and stroke your blanket while I sing you hymns, I think I could live in that moment forever. We are so incredibly grateful for your sweet smile and loving spirit, I don't know what we would do without you. We love you so much, Baby Love!