Big Girl

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Coraline is 19 months old, and just absolutely adorable (most of the time). She is getting quite a bit of “personality” aka endearing demands. We had a tough time this month with photos, because, well, she just didn’t want to right then.

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She’s just all about words this month and last, here are a few new ones: Empty, Booboo, Bubble, Me, Fire, Button, Go go, Wait.

Go go is used in reference to Sasha when we ask her to “go go go” with her cookie to eat in the other room, or “up up up” to get up and go outside. Coraline likes to request Sasha to do these things too, and also to feed her lately, which is beyond adorable as long as she’s not throwing her food from the dining table. It’s cute to watch her get a puppy treat for Sasha and walk around the house looking for her and calling for her.

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I have so many cute Coraline faces it’s hard to identify a favorite, but the ones where she is scrunching up her nose, or emphasizing those big cheeks, are good contenders.

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She’s had a relatively healthy few months, besides some eczema flair ups on her cheeks and knees, but we tried to switch diapers this month unsuccessfully. I’ve been trying to select healthier options for our household since I started working for this more environmentally and health conscious company, but unfortunately, these diapers weren’t absorbent enough and cause a pretty bad rash we keep trying to get on top of. I can’t wait until we are able to switch to underwear (it will be only organic for her sensitive tushy!). Coraline just moved up into the potty-training rooms, so we’ll see how quickly things progress.

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She finally stands still sometimes for her hair, or runs while I do it, laughing all the way, but at least it doesn’t seem to bother her quite as much as it did at first when I tried to fix it up. The little whoville style ponytails crack me up, but her hair is actually long enough for a real pony tail if she’d leave a clip in for the shorter front hair.

Even Jameson said the other day that Coraline is getting to be a big girl. I caught her trying to jump the other day, and remembered when Jameson would try to jump. It certainly won’t be long!

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Birthday and Baby

The same weekend we celebrated our neighbor’s kiddos’ birthdays, we celebrated with Vivienne for her 3rd birthday, just a week before her little brother was born! I really loved these lights over their porch.

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It was such a lovely day outside, and the kids played with bubbles, drawing, playhouse and of course, running outside.

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Coraline is wearing her little party favor necklace here, which she actually kept on. The kiddos also got sheriff pins for the cowgirl theme’d party. I love Vivienne’s little boots, above.

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Lisa had several flavors of cupcakes, which tasted like they were made by a pro. They were divine, and had little cowgirl pictures on toothpicks stuck into them. Vivienne seem to relish the attention and was excited to open gifts.

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The big gift from mommy and daddy was her scooter, complete with knee and elbow pads, but her favorite was Woody’s friend Jessie.

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After dinner, the boys Jonathan and Jameson ran races and made mischief.

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And then just 15 days or so later, I was back taking photos of her baby brother, Finn. Vivienne was very serious about her little brother, but she did give him a kiss for the camera. Also, she got a balloon out of it! She looked so much older (as all big brothers and sisters seem to after a new baby), all 3 years of her.

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One and a Half

I look back a couple months, and it’s hard to believe this girl wasn’t walking then. Now, she’s climbing onto the couch, chairs, stools, and play equipment. She’s 30 inches tall and 21 pounds, following her curve and happy and healthy.

We did have her iron levels checked after they were low a few months ago, but vitamins have remedied that. However, we did find that the tube in her ear, the only one left after the other came out early, is sideways. We did have one eardrum rupture a few weeks ago, the first in about 6 months, that probably caused it. We are hoping that we can get through the winter without putting them in again, though.

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We transitioned this month to no bottles, almost literally the day we came back from the doctor’s (at his almost aggressive insistence). She was almost ready herself anyway, and it happens that she’s now drinking some milk from the sippy during the day at school, though not much for us at home unless it’s dinner time. She was a little cranky in the mornings, until we realized she was hungry, and now she’s pretty happy until we get downstairs and demands something to eat (usually a baby food pouch). More breakfast comes later at school, and she’s a little snack monster. This girl eats as much as Jameson does, if not more so since she’s not (quite) as picky as him yet.

Got rid of the changing table in favor of this genius piece of furniture

We also got rid of the changing table, putting it in the closet as shelving space, in favor of this adorable seat and bookcase. She seems to like it, and I try to have her bedtime routine include picking out her own book. Coraline is still a fan of the “burp cloths” which we now call her blankies, and the more the merrier! But otherwise she hasn’t shown any attachment to dolls or stuffed animals beyond commenting what they were. She does like her glow worm, and we had to turn it back on the sample music so that it didn’t run for so long since it was keeping her awake!

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Coraline is clapping for mommy’s songs, and singing herself. She loves to try and seeing “Bringing home a baby bumble bee” and “Baby Beluga”. We also have a night night song for her, which she also sings to herself. She names all faces “baby” and “mommy” (even daddy was mommy for a while, which is slowly changing). I kind of loved it.

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My favorite of her words is “no” because she says it with such little person attitude even when she really means yes. She says it to almost all questions, even when we’re not talking to her, which cracks me up. Some new words this month were “balloon”, “puppy”, “up” and “nice”. I also like “nice” since she drags out the “niiiiiice” and pets dogs, brother, mommy’s hair, everyone as she says it. We had to reinforce it to avoid some hitting we had going on, and she really took to it.

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I love “up” which comes out “upbah”. She also will say “more” with the addition of the hand sign, and “all done” which comes out more like “alduh” with the hand sign. She also imitates a lot of words we say that I haven’t heard her repeat much independently, like “rain”. She strings together two words on occasion, most frequently “hi mommy” in her adorable little grin. Coraline seems like she may have a word for Jameson that may be derived from “brother”, but I’m not certain yet. She certainly talks about buba, and also bobby a lot. We’re not really sure what these words mean, but she will chatter nonstop, convinced that we understand everything she’s saying.

We really adore this stage, when everything and everyone is thrilling to her and she is beginning to occupy herself, talk to us, and respond. Coraline is so fun to play with! I can just say that I’m a little bummed summer is ending since she is full swing of running and playing and climbing outside.

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Clowning Around Party

That past couple years, our neighbors have had one big birthday party for both their kids who were born in August. Last year, they hired a balloon man. This year, they one upped him by hiring a clown who was also a magician and balloon man!

Last year, Jameson hung back quietly. This year it did not take him long to get into the fun. He even volunteered himself! His squeals of delight were so fun to hear. Even Coraline sat still on my lap for nearly a half an hour watching him.
 

 
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Jameson got to keep a hippo after the trick he volunteered for. He was so excited! All the kids got little stuffed animals then, which was super cute. After the magic show, he did balloons and Brian occupied some kiddos while they waited their turns with a handle held air pump.

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Jameson requested an alien, and we were pretty fascinated with the balloon within a balloon.

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So for their birthday, we decided to get a gift that was outdoors, since Kelly mentioned they have a lot of toys and clothes already. (Also, a bonus in that my kiddos would be able to play with it too). We got them a combined gift of the Classic Alligator Teeter Totter, and it came in this enormous box that I loved watching the kids speculate what it was. Big boxes are always exciting!

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Oh, and we also had the water bouncer out! It was a kid’s dream party, I believe. Then time for cake! Coraline enjoyed eating her cake so much that she licked the plate, cracking us all up.
 

 
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I think the birthday kiddos had a lot of fun; I know mine did too!

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One Month Shy of 1.5

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Coraline is 17 months old, just shy of 1-and-a-half. I feel like this month, or last month, or somewhere in between, she became a kiddo and not the baby. She wants to do everything the big kids are doing, from playing in the bouncers, to riding on the power vehicle toys.

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Just like Jameson, this month we turned the corner with the blocks. She still loves to toss them and throw them off, but she’s now trying to stack them, as he did as well. She is also loving flipping the light switches with her pointer finger steadily out to flick it off. She loves putting toys in things, from the fake “coins” in the bank, to balls in a cup and opening and closing lids.

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She knows where her nose, eyes, ears, and belly button are. We ask her to point to noses and belly buttons. Belly buttons are fun, particularly on mommy and daddy. She loves getting kissed on the cheeks, and I feel like Coraline giggles all the time. Everything is funny right now for her! There is some learning here about taking that delight with us on a day to day basis, and a certainly wish I had her attitude most days (of course, we all have days that aren’t quite as delightful!).

She isn’t delighted with diaper changes though. She currently hates them.

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Coraline has started using the spoon and fork, and seemed an old pro at it as soon as we gave them to her. We gave them to her a while back with little success and just tried it again later. I am not certain if she was using them already at daycare, or maybe she already has some great fine motor skills, but she did great and tries to use them pretty consistently. She also loves to wash her hands, scrubbing them together all by herself.

Oh, and she enjoys corn on the cob (she likes to suck on the cob to get all the corn juice out.) Coraline has all her baby teeth, except for her 2 year molars, as far as I can tell. All the eye teeth, and the very slow missing bottom front teeth are all finally popped in. With her full set of chompers, she eats most everything, even eat raw carrots. She likes to try and eat off our plates. She has even eaten eggs, something that Jameson never liked and still doesn’t today. Coraline is not a fan of zucchini though, and depending on the day will refuse food she liked the day prior. Life of a toddler.

However, we are not doing so great with milk. We are still giving Coraline a morning and evening bottle with her milk in it. She simply refuses milk during the day (and if we manage to actually get her to taste it since she is already very suspicious of anything that doesn’t look like water, she’ll push it away). We still offer it occasionally, but have come to the conclusion that until we can reason with her to sit and drink a cup of milk during meal times as we do with Jameson, she will not drink milk from a sippy. And, for some time, we’ll just continue the bottle.

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And speaking of bottles, Coraline has a slew of new words including bottle, water (sometimes), “moooo”, “peep peep”, and a fabulous “rooooar” that lions, tigers and bears all make. Coraline also finally has a very distinct “mommy” word! I know I’ve heard mama and dada, but now it’s a very clear “mommy”. Today, she repeated after Brian saying “Hi Mommy”. I do believe I have a little bit of a mommy’s girl right now, and that’s quite fine with me, since daddy already has a daddy’s boy ūüėČ

She has quite a few intentional-sounding words that start with “ba” which seem to mean bottle, ball, that, and more. But she is definitely trying to communicate to us and will follow simple directions when she wants to (like let’s take a bath and get shoes on, because those are fun things)

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Coraline is a pro-walker now! She strides through grass without problems, and comes to mommy to kiss away her boo boos. She snuggles up for hugs, and seems more physically affectionate than rambunctious Jameson was. She’s on the move as well though, doing a lot of climbing stairs and up the steps to go down slides.

And now she loves to swing as well! She likes to say “weeeee” for swings and slides, and “bye bye” with a little wave to everyone in a car (power wheels or not, family or not).

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First teeth brushing

Bedtime is adorable. Coraline now brushes her teeth (with assistance). I use that time to brush her wild tangled mop of hair she has, since that is the only time she will sit or stand still. I don’t want to cut bangs for her, but she pulls barrettes out of her hair so they frequently fall across her eyes. It doesn’t seem to bother her though. Then we read stories and have her bottle.

Coraline simply loves books and has refused milk at bedtime to read books instead. Until I tell her there are no more stories, at which point she’ll drink some before snuggling up in her crib. Her favorite books are Doggies, and a flip book with farm animals.

I’ve been singing the Baby Beluga Book to her recently which she and Jameson both enjoy. Jameson likes to sit on my “other” lap when we read this, and sometimes it’s in the morning, because Coraline insists on a book in the morning after morning bottle too.

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This is my favorite face of hers, with her scrunched up nose.

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Playdate

Since a lot of our friends had children right around the time we had Jameson, he has had no shortage of playdates and playmates. Coraline, however, was born about a year to year and a half off from our friends’ second children. She hasn’t had nearly as many playdates as Jameson had.

The night Coraline was born, my friend also had her first baby, Adelyn. We’ve only gotten the kiddos together one other time, when they were we little. So we decided to get them together again for a little playdate a few weekends ago! Brian even got out the water bouncer for them, though they couldn’t appreciate the slide just yet.

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I also invited an old co-worker, Lauren, with her twin girls. They are just over 2 years old, so they were able to enjoy the slide. It must be nice to have a built in playmate!

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Jameson was great with the babies and younger toddlers. He was just excited to play in the water bouncer! We were all happy it was such a nice day out for it. We also filled up the water table which never seems to get old. Technically it’s¬†a sand and water table, though we’ve never put anything in it but water.

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Coraline and Adelyn showed off their climbing skills, crawling all over the bouncer. Adelyn was already walking, and loved splashing in the water. Coraline enjoyed the water much more after she was a able to eat after her nap. She wasn’t quite walking yet, but happy to walk along the walls and climb over obstacles.

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It was nice for Coraline to have an opportunity to play with kiddos her age, though she never seems to be complaining about it. She adores her brother and watching big kids play too! It’s hard to believe so much time has passed though.

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16 Month Old Walker

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Coraline developed major attitude this month! From shaking her head yes and no, she moved just shaking her head no to everything! She also started pointing and yelling “no”, a development while we were visiting Meemaw (perhaps from yelling at the dog to leave her alone?). Coraline was hitting and pulling hair this month as well, finding this funny, because perhaps we laughed at her once. So we’re working on being “gentle”, and petting nicely (both humans and doggies).

Our “bye bye” now includes a wave as well, and we’ve actually seen a couple signs and spoken “more” and “all done” from her, though not consistently, since whining still gets her what she wants, usually. We’re working on that one as well.

Coraline even got her very first pedicure, from Aunt Melissa! (Jameson got his painted blue as well)

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A little pretend play from Coraline. She will make sucking noises for a baby doll, and woof woof from her dog stuffed animal. But these are still short but sweet episodes! She also learned how to blow the whistle (and somehow pulled the vent cover off the floor and put a bunch of the musical toys in it one day without us noticing)

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Whistle skills

The teacher who followed Jameson for most of his time at school from each room is taken to coming to Coraline’s room and doing her hair occasionally. She never sits still for us for more than a clip, if that, but I love these little pony tails on top of her head!

This month we really noticed that she wants everything that we or Jameson has, like snacks and cups. She still loves being chased, and she loved bouncing on Jameson’s bed at Meemaw’s house. Putting things back together or making them work brings her delight and I love her little laugh.

She enjoys bouncing on pillows, so we added one to her crib. She doesn’t sleep on it for very long, but she smiles happily when I lay her down on it.

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She’s very ticklish, under her arms and the bottoms of her feet. The tickling laugh cracks me up, and also sounds remarkably like Jameson did. However, she sure is hard to capture on camera smiling. When the camera comes out, her solemn face appears unless I can capture her on the move (which is just as difficult!).

Coraline is reasonably indiscriminate about what she eats, enjoying most meat and fruit. Vegetables and pasta are hit or miss depending on the day. This month we started her on Jameson’s “special yogurt” tubes, which she also likes, though she needs help to avoid squishing it all over her face and clothes. We also began putting her in the booster seat, and we all eat together for dinner. She still throws a lot of her food to Sasha.

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She’s only allowed the bottle morning and night, and we continue to try the sippy cup at daycare during the day. On weekends though we don’t tend to even offer the sippy with milk because she refuses consistently. Instead, we give her water all day long.

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For some reason, she has suddenly developed an intolerance for getting her head and hair wet. While she still loves water and bath time, she hates the part where we have to rinse her head. I’m hoping she gets through this phase quickly since she really seemed to love water! Our bedtime includes several books, and she always wants more. Her favorite is Jameson’s former favorite, Doggies by Sandra Boyton.

But the biggest change this month? We have a walker! In one week, we went from crawling to walking nearly all the time. Her first time walking on command was to Jameson, of course! He was delighted. She still a little uncertain on the grass and wants to hold hands, though.

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One week later, she’s kicking a ball around the room!

She is starting to do a lot more climbing as well, and showed how she could climb from chair foot stool against Jameson’s bed to being on TOP of Jameson’s bed (and then falling off it when we weren’t looking the very next day).

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Visit to Grampi’s

A couple weeks ago, Jameson was able to spend nearly a week with his Meemaw and Grandpa. Coraline and I joined for a few days, and then left Jameson for his first visit by himself. He did great, and we were able to Facetime with him every night. He was so shy talking with us by the end, which was funny.

My friend whose father recently passed away was in town, and we were able to get together with her Saturday night after arriving. I brought the kiddos over for dinner, and then returned after bedtime to spend some more time with everyone.

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Coraline is the only one of 3 similarly aged little girls who isn’t walking, but they were all so cute together. She devoured her meal including pizza and hot dog!

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Jameson loved seeing his friend Marky again. He remembered him from his last visit home, so they were on familiar territory right away. There were other children there he didn’t really know yet, so after Marky left to spend the night at his grandma’s, Jameson occupied himself for the most part with Marky’s toys.

After I returned sans children, we walked over from Katie’s house to Tracy’s new house, very close by. I saw my chinchilla’s (the late Sir Chewy’s) parents, both alive and well! Carl and Chloe.

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We spent a lot of time outdoors, and it was nice this visit that Coraline was not sick. It seemed as if she was always dealing with a cold, earache or illness when we visited! Coraline loved hanging out on the deck in the shade, playing with the balls. Jameson loved the little ball we brought too, which was small enough to also play on the deck.

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Jameson got to help participate¬†in daily activities like walking the dogs, watering the garden…

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…And also finding toads stuck in the window wells. He and Grandpa saved 4 toads in one day!

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Our visit included a trip to the local splash park on Monday, new since I was a kid. Jameson was very uncertain at first, preferring the traditional playground there instead. Marky helped convince him to play in the water.

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Boys will be boys!

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We enjoyed more playground visits, walking dogs and racing while I visited! But I will save more of¬†that for a follow up post on Jameson’s activities at Meemaw and Grandpa’s house by himself.

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Coraline decided she likes drinking from cups (or really just doing anything that we’re doing)! Alas, still only water from said cups. Anti-juice, anti-milk. This girl is picky!

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She tried to¬†get into trouble, as she has recently learned how to climb, stairs and boxes. She wasn’t too happy once she was stuck on top of the box, though!

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She also loved feeding the dogs. She likes to try and feed Sasha at home, though mostly from her highchair where Sasha is ready to eat what she drops. The dogs at Meemaw’s house are at eye-level though, and Coraline just wanted to feed Shiloh like crazy.

Her big word of the week was “no” as she repeated what she heard over and over again (said to the dogs and to herself!) I loved how she stretches the nnnnnnnn for nnnnnnnnno.

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Mayzie though is more mellow in her old age, going a little deaf and blind. She mostly stayed out of the way for the new almost-toddler.

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One of the most entertaining events was Jameson’s introduction of calling Grandpa “Grampi” once, which quickly evolved into a running joke about Grampi being Grampi (like Grumpy, but better). Jameson assured us that we should actually be calling him Grandpa, but I think Jameson is now fighting a losing battle. Grampi is here to stay.

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After having been there a few days and getting reacclimated to the house, Jameson was great when I went to leave. He insisted on helping or watching the final packing (I did as much as I could the night before and just had to load the car) and transferring his car seat.

Helpfully, he’s had a few sleepovers at Aunt Melissa’s house recently, and his friend Lily just spent a week at her grandma’s house, so we talked about those things a little and focused on all the fun things he was going to do. It turned out quite anticlimactic when I actually left. I did love his unprompted “I love you Mommy” during our goodbyes, and the “I’m going to miss you Mommy” he said a couple days beforehand. Such a sweet little man!

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Father’s Day

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For Father’s Day this year, after strawberry picking in the morning, we had a Father’s Day cookout (which seems to be our usual get together). We ate inside though because it was so hot out!

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We invited Brian’s parents and sister over and put up a bouncer for the kids.

We had a few “races” through the bouncer, and Jameson had to help Aunt Melissa get out.

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Jameson threw a few water balloons, though we opted not to get drenched with the water bouncer or sprinkler that day. This is his sly grin face, as he’s approaching me to get my feet. (Luckily, just my feet)

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Coraline enjoyed splashing in the pool, though we didn’t put her all the way in.

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The men put a tarp over the bouncer to help prevent it from getting too hot. It worked pretty well!

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Coraline¬†loved the obstacle course bouncer and can crawl through the entire thing (going around the sides of things she can’t yet get over). Her¬†favorite ¬†part is the slide!

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She was so proud of herself, every single time, with her wide wrinkly nose grins. It was a great day spent with family, the kind you wish you could have every weekend. But summer is in full swing and there is more fun to come!

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15.5 Months

Coraline is well into 15 months, and while I’d love to talk about her at 15 months, I’m afraid this will be a little mixed in with some current drama from this trouble maker.

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The big question is, is Coraline walking yet?! The answer is no, though she did take her first step this month on June 3. She definitely can though: she can walk fine holding on to just one hand, and walks along walls and with her walking behind toys. She’s there, she’s just not confident enough to make the big move!

Got my hair did at school today!

Coraline has developed a bit of an attitude this month, though at 15 months it was more cutesy. She loves to shake her head yes and no, though she doesn’t understand what they mean. When she’s frustrated, she stretches herself out on the floor and kicks her feet! This is a bit earlier than I remember Jameson exhibiting this kind of tantrum behavior, but it’s short and funny, and involves no head-banging, at least.

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She's doing this thing now where she stretches out on the floor and kicks her feet when she's angry or frustrated. She's only 14 months, so I'm starting to get concerned about the terrible twos that we kind of skipped over with Jameson!

She is still drinking from the bottle. We didn’t try the sippy again, since she continued to refuse the sippy cups where she couldn’t see what was inside. Apparently, trying cold turkey really made an impression on her! However, at her doctor visit, he told us that in a couple months we could just remove the bottle entirely and supplement with vitamins. We may not wait the full two months to do that, because she really likes her “botteh” and I’d like to cut the habit soon. This also sounds very similar to water, and so Coraline asking for a drink sounds all the same.

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Other words this month include “woof woof”, and her first sentence “daghdagh woof woof” (Sasha and doggy have merged to sound one and the same). The woof woof was non stop for a few weeks, and was my favorite! She also got in her other two molars on bottom (she now has all four) and one more tooth in the bottom front. That’s a lot of teeth in one month!

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Coraline really found her element enjoying water play outside, as well as the slide. She’s now tolerating the swing for a minute (of very very slow pushing) before wailing to get out. She also loves water play inside, in the bath tub, and even blows bubbles in the water (after a bit of practice and realizing that you cannot inhale the water).

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Slide lovr

What we really started noticing this month is her independence and trying to get into things (like toilets and toilet paper), as well as crawling through and under the chairs. While we didn’t see a big word explosion this month, we saw huge progression in her walking and physical abilities. Just last month she was standing.

Trouble

Coraline is just under 20 pounds, and in the 25th percentile across the board. Our small fry is getting so big!

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