12 Weeks: Returning to Work

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This week was a hard week; Brian left last Friday morning for a trade show and then a conference and was gone the entire full week before and during my first day back at work. Coraline was great and at least slept through the night for me which was amazing!

I am so very thankful for family to help me through; on Friday, Brian’s mom came over to watch Jameson and put him to bed while I took Coraline out to a bachelorette party (I know, I know).

Baby at a bachelorette party

I was not the only one with a baby there; there was one pregnant person. Plus, I only stayed for the early eating part and not the drinking and dancing part when they left the house. Coraline was fabulous, sitting for an hour and a half looking around. She was propped up by zebra print pillows which she was fascinated with, and I was so happy to be able to see friends from college who I hadn’t seen in at least a year or more.

When we got home, she was unhappy and overtired, but all was well and she slept through the night again! I dared hold my breath for more, and she has actually slept through the night the entire WEEK. But I am not optimistic, as she continues to struggle with the bottle, that she won’t start waking up at night to eat. But I will be thankful for now and appreciate the full nights sleep I got every single night while Brian was gone.

Saturday morning I got everyone to the farmer’s market to pick up our share which included lots of lovely greens. We didn’t stay to peruse after that though because Jameson kept trying to splash through mud puddles and pick up rocks.

Brian’s mom picked up Jameson around noon to spend the rest of the day, night, and all day Sunday with her and papa!

Coraline took a few beautiful sleeping photos that day which I was excited about since I didn’t get any for her newborn ones. We also went to a birthday party where she was a little less good than she had been the night before, and I enjoyed a lovely evening to myself.

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Except I was bored and lonely. Dare I say it? It was hard to be there by myself, no Jameson or Coraline awake to occupy my time and finished reading my books with no shows to watch.

Sunday I watched two movies and held Coraline most of the day since she refused to nap. Nothing much else to say about Sunday except that I didn’t really mind it; it seemed like “the last” of things since Monday she was going to start school. I know we’ll have weekends, but all the same it was bittersweet.

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I did put both kids to bed by myself on Sunday which wasn’t too bad. Coraline yelled, Jameson got distracted by her, and it seemed it might never end. Thankfully it did, and the morning getting ready for Coraline’s first day of school was much better. I woke myself at 5:30 feeling uncomfortable and showered and dressed before Coraline got up. She was fed and dressed and happy and waiting then while I did Jameson and we all made it to daycare by 7:45. I couldn’t believe it!

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Monday afternoon my mom arrived to help with bedtimes and morning times. She came bearing donuts! Coraline stayed til noon at school and I picked her up exhausted. She didn’t nap or eat much at all. She passed out after I fed her for hours, for the first time ever. I had to wake her 3 hours later! I tried to enjoy my last days at home less the children, so we went to a movie on Tuesday and shopping and a mani/pedi on Wednesday.

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Tuesday and Wednesday were much harder for Coraline. She did a little better on Tuesday than Wednesday; Tuesday I picked her up at 2 and Wednesday at 4:30. She did as she does at home and took 30 minute naps. She tried 4 bottles both days and drank about 3.5 ounces total each day (really like the equivalent of one bottle). They tell me she didn’t do much screaming at the bottle, so even though she isn’t taking much, it doesn’t seem to be a fight at least.

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She didn’t have any wet diapers in the afternoon on Wednesday so with trepidation I put her to sleep that night thinking she would wake all night. Instead, on Thursday, my first day back at work, I tried to use her as an alarm clock and she didn’t wake until 7!

Needless to say, my first morning going back to work was hectic (and rainy). I do hope things get easier for her (and myself) soon; thankfully Brian returned Thursday night and I have a flexible work allowing me to leave early for the next week or so to make sure I can feed Coraline twice in the evenings since she is not doing well during the day.

We’ll just keep working at it! Until then, I expect sleepy and hungry evenings for Miss Coraline!

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26 Months

Even though I am not taking photos of Jameson with his chair and blocks, I am still writing down his monthly accomplishments and milestones in a notebook. So despite that fact that this is nearly half a month! late, these are in fact some of the things he did between January 16 and February 16!

Jameson has developed quite a bit of memory. He told his Meemaw that he went swimming during FaceTime later one weekend, and definitely remembered that we stopped and got him a cheeseburger after swimming lessons the previous week because the next week? He insisted on a “cheeseburger” on the way home. Plus fries, apples, and milk. (We don’t care so much about the Happy Meal toys yet)

He also became best friends with Sasha this month. Previously, their relationship was one of mutual concern. He liked to pet Sasha when she was calm, and she likewise only wanted to lick Jameson when he was calm. They both expressed concern when one or the other was too excited. This month? Jameson put that all behind him and insisted on telling her things, showing her things, and hugging he goodbye, and talking about her frequently. She hasn’t quite changed her attitude yet though, ha!

Some new, more fun words he had this month were “slippery” and “bumpy”. He is regularly repeating after us (no swear words yet, shockingly) and has started more expansive phrases, but I still love hearing these kinds of new words out of his mouth. He has stayed very polite, not always remembering please but pretty consistently remembering to say “thank you”. Sometimes he tacks on a “sir” for “thank you sir” at the end of it, because that is what he hears from me to his dad, so that is particularly entertaining.

He was pretty sick this month with winter colds and a less than 24 hour stomach bug. The saddest thing he learned this month was requesting to go to the bathroom to throw up in the toilet. We were grateful that he understood after we took him in there just a few times because it cut down on clean up, but we sure did hate for him to need to learn it in the first place. Dad stayed up with him and slept in his room. Finally at about 3 am he stopped, and the next day, after careful reintroduction of food, he was fine.

This month he also discovered how to open Doorknobs. After just a few days, we put doorknob safety locks on the pantry, followed a few days later by the inside of his room (because we’ve been having gate issues we sometimes have to close his door before bed to show him we’re serious about him staying in his room!), and then we also put one on the basement door.

Probably the most exciting things this month were saying his name (finally!), and moving to the next room at school, the Vikings room. Sadly, his teacher who has followed him from day one was not able to transition up to the new room with him this time, but after about a week and a half (and after his best friend Nathan joined him), he is fine. He loves the toys in the new room. Oh, and he did have a girlfriend for at least a day, they were caught holding hands.

He did have his Valentine’s party in the old room where most of his friends were, but this was the first year we exchanged valentines at school which was cute.

My favorite part of the new room is the tiny little water fountain just outside it, where he has learned to get drinks of water himself.

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Halloween Party

I was so excited to attend his school’s Halloween party on Halloween since I haven’t spent much time there with him. I loved seeing all the other kids, him in costume, and watching the teacher/student interactions.

When I arrived, Jameson jumped up out of Cara’s lap and over to me. We were waiting to start the parade, so we sang some songs and then did a dance. Jameson seemed a little out of sorts, already in his costume.

Jameson put his blanket on the cots and all the kids lined up and out to the central area to begin the parade through the rooms.

Okay, it was really scattered. It must have been their ages, but there wasn’t a lot of structure to our parade. I took hold of Jameson’s hand since he seemed a little lost and we went through just a couple rooms before returning back to ours.

I think that he was a little warm in the costume actually, and when we got back to the classroom he cried a little trying to unzip himself from the costume, poor thing!

I helped him out of the costume, and everything was immediately better. Also, it was snack time!

They gave the kids cups with a little apple juice in it, and Jameson did really well! I was impressed, since at home he was dumping water on the floor from cups on purpose.

After about 3 refills (about half a cup of straight apple juice), I suggested maybe he might want water next instead hehe! ūüėČ

And here’s Mr. Nathan again, smirking when he saw me taking photos of him!

I also got a picture of his Star of the Month board. He was showcased during October, so Halloween was his very last day on the board.

And I finally captured a smile from Jameson! I commented to another mom there that I could finally put away my camera and she laughed and said she does the same thing. We are all the same, and all different, us moms!

I did escape before snack time was over so that I didn’t need to clean up. I had to get to work, and also change into my own costume.

Here is my team, much bigger than just a few months ago. It was a good time, and we walked into the work cafeteria blasting some Spice Girls.

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Twenty-Two

Yesterday, I took these photos while we were home sick. Jameson had a fever on Monday and came home around noon. The child barely seemed to register his illness until the fever resurgence in the evening. It quickly responded to Advil, and Tuesday he was entirely fever-free.

Brian and I alternated watching him in the morning and evening, which worked out really well. Jameson had a nice long nap, and so my afternoon shift was relatively short. And he woke up and took these wonderful, genuine photos for me.

He knew what I wanted when I asked him for photos, climbing up in his chair without prompting, and then climbing back down to help me pick out the blocks. We talked about the letters I was looking for, and he repeated after me, though the blocks he picked out were not correct. The school has told us he recognized all the first letters they are teaching him though!

When I plopped him up on his chair, the first look he gave me was this:

Worried about the photo shoot now, I stretched myself into ridiculous-ness and started enunciating vowels funny as I said “Meeeester Penguiiinnnn” in reference to the previous day’s play with a penguin stuffed animal. Success in 10 photos or less!

This month, we introduced him to the potty at home instead of just at daycare. We purchased him his frog potty on 10/5, and he was so excited about it that he threw a fit when we told him he needed to get off and get his pjs on. On 10/7, just two days after bringing home the chair, he told us he had to go (he already had). He now frequently will tell us when he has already gone potty and wants to go sit on it, but it’s already too late!

I consider this all great success, and consistency will help him get familiar with it. I frequently will go potty sitting next to him (he asks me to, just like when he brushes his teeth). I am conveniently pregnant and can pee on command, so that works out well.

He got his very first terrible diaper rash the other week when he actually pooed overnight but never called out for us to change him. When I think back, I don’t think he has ever gone overnight before that, even as an infant. Luckily with regular cream he was back to normal within 3 days.

Eating has become entertaining. Sometimes when I ask Jameson to try things he dislikes before getting more of his favorites, he will lick them or put them in his mouth for a moment before spitting them into his bib pockets.

He is enjoying condiments like ketchup in particular (by the spoonful). Whatever condiments mom and dad has, he wants too. With a little Nature’s Seasons, he actually ate cauliflower one evening. However, bbq sauce on McDonald’s chicken nuggets he just licked up.

He particularly enjoys kielbasa when it comes to meat, and he reminds me of Brian by eating edges like crust off bread before the inside.

Sometimes we talk about a baby being in mommy’s belly (and food in daddy’s and his own belly). He doesn’t get it, but he thinks baby is a fun word to say, and asks to watch videos of babies (aka himself on the ipad or my childhood videos on TV) frequently.

New words and phrases this month include: “stars”, “no touch” and “thank you”. At school on Grandparents Day, grandma told us that he yelled out “heart!” when identifying the shape.

He did get his very first bite at school a couple days ago on his upper arm, but none of teachers caught it when it happened. I noticed it while bathing him on Monday night. It didn’t break skin so I’m not too worried about it. He has bit other children on rare occasions, which were usually related to teething. His room doesn’t seem to have any major issues.

When we build towers now, if he doesn’t like how we’ve built it, he will remove the blocks and place them how he likes. I enjoy watching his mind work.

Jameson is a big helper too. We started letting him unload his dishes from the dishwasher by putting his stepping stool next to it. He puts them in the lazy susan with all his other plastic ware, but the cabinet gets pretty messy now. I hope it continues to encourage chores and helpfulness! He likes to “wash” dishes now too while I am at the sink, so I give him some already dirty plastic dishes to wash on the floor in a container of water and mild soap.

He continues to try to learn how to jump with a crouch and a big step. He hasn’t gotten the hang of it yet, though he has been trying for weeks. One of these days it’ll click and he’ll be launching both feet off the floor!

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School Update

Now that we are ending summer, I thought it overdue to share some photos from Jameson’s school that they gave us back in July. I just now scanned them into the computer, if you can believe that… You probably can.

It’s obvious that he has a blast there. Yesterday, I took him to get his flu shot since he doesn’t have any more check ups scheduled until his 2 year (remember last year, when it seemed we were going to the doctor every few months? I mean, we were. Now he’s a big kid). Anyway, we did the shot and he was absolutely a champ, not even crying as he sat on my lap and got the shot. It was helpful that we had my very favorite nurse, so nice and cheerful and expert at giving shots quickly and accurately. We were gone from school one hour, and when we got back I thought for sure he’d want to go home with me, since he’s been a bit clingy to me recently. However, he jumped back in the room with barely a look back (literally). I’m sure it also helped that our very favorite teacher there, so all around it was a very lucky, painless day when I thought it would be much worse.

(No side effects, by the way. He wasn’t even worrying at the spot, like I did when I got the one in my arm. Instead, he keeps pointing at his knees where he skinned them last week to say booboo. He was fascinated with the band-aid though when I took it off in the evening)

He doesn’t wear a bib anymore in the morning while eating his yogurt.¬† He is pretty expert with the spoon and loves his breakfast. I’m happy he enjoys yogurt so much, since it’s hard to get him to eat a lot of healthy meat. We are reasonably good with fruit and veggies, expert with pasta, but not good at eating meat. He only likes fish sticks and hot dogs (which includes sausage, so that is a little more variety).

This photo impresses me because he was going down their large covered slide a lot earlier than I would’ve anticipated. I suppose that is the advantage of being around other kids!

These next ones, of him enjoying the outdoors, are some of my favorites. I love the routine he has there. They never seem to be bored, going from gym to music to outside. They sit in a circle and learn letters, can you believe it?! His sheet yesterday said that he identified all the letters they’ve taught them so far correctly, which includes: m¬† s¬† a¬† t and I think r.

I am so pleased with his daily artwork, the learning and real school environment he is experiencing even now, and the happy mix of play time that they integrate seamlessly into his day. Is it better than what I would provide to him at home? I think yes, unless I spent the time and effort to learn a curriculum that I would follow at home. Could I do it? Yes; would it be the well-rounded and social experience he has today? No. I wouldn’t change a thing.

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Sailors

Jameson’s new room at daycare (which can now pretty much officially be called “School”) is called the Sailors. In this room, there is a potty and sink at their level, new toys and games designed to encourage more learning, NO cribs, and tables and chairs that don’t require the kids to be strapped in.

Which means I can make a little sigh of relief that hopefully we won’t lose any more teeth that way.

His daily sheets come home with a little less personalization and description now, but nearly every day I get some piece of art that Jameson did. His teachers say he loves art time, which is a little shocking to me, since he doesn’t seem to like to sit still for anything. But he is a different child at school, consistently putting things away and apparently enjoying making lots of art!

The sheets now include “activities” which are usually something in the range of taking off shorts, pulling up shorts, and lining up.

This is Jameson demonstrating his new skills. He also likes to take his own diaper off during changes, and to wipe himself. He’s pretty independent, and I still have high hopes that he’ll be potty trained by 3 and no later. His second day in the new room they already had him sitting on the potty. So far, his sheets only have “Tried Potty” circled every couple days or so. We haven’t seen any “Went Potty” circle (and I’m sure it will be pure chance the first time it happens, but still very exciting).

This month, he is clearly trying to say all kinds of new words like heavy and watch. Two word sentences are a little more frequent, and if apple juice counts, that’s another. In fact, we had our very first 3 word sentence on 9/6! More Elmo Please, he said. He didn’t get it (it was 5 minute until bedtime), but we were oh so close to giving in. I know once the baby is born, he’ll seem exponentially bigger and older, but even right now, I feel like he is just exploding with new skills and getting taller and more articulate.

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19 Months And Counting

This month, we didn’t have a whole lot of great photos to choose from. Jameson was pretty excited about the blocks!

I started writing down the many new things we observed during the month because I couldn’t remember them all the end! This month, his grandma taught him that grunting is necessary for getting lids on and off; so while he learned how to screw and unscrew lids, he will grunt and groan while doing it. Likewise, he likes to squeeze his food between his fingers, and that deserves a grunt too while his little fist shakes with the effort.

Speaking of food, he consistently eats broccoli (he once at all the broccoli out of the mixed vegetable steam fresh bag), cheese, and most any pasta (not rice or tortellini). Many other foods are hit or miss depending on the day, even fruit was a miss on rare occasions.

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He can click his tongue now in addition to these new words: Buckle, Poop, Pee, Moo, Baa, Ee ee ee (the sound the monkey makes, according to grandma), EE ii ee ii oh, Water, Weener, Elmo (pronounced melmo), Duck, Bib, and all of these are used still pretty inconsistently except for Buckle, Bib and Elmo.

Jameson is also making up entire sentences. Babble babble more babble ma mo babble? Whatever you say, Jameson! We have heard his first two word sentences. First was “bye bye doggie” at 18 months, and recently “no no doggie” when she was trying to lick his ears.

“More please” is pretty seamless now; he says “Mo” and signs the word for “please” pretty consistently. “Thank you” is also becoming more frequent though only on request, but it is also a sign.

Lest you think that all is well and communication easy for him, he frequently gets frustrated that he can’t express himself, most often surrounding food. Whining at the pantry is a favorite past-time before dinner as we list through his various snack options (and he doesn’t really understand the word snack).

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While I try to limit the snacking to just half a bag of animal crackers (his current favorite) before dinner (and try to suggest blueberries often as an alternative), one night it was so bad I allowed him to pick out his meal in the fridge. He chose a leftover grilled cheesy bratwurst (I doubt he knew that it was more than a hot dog!) and a yogurt. He ate them both, no complaints.

Bed time: Though he doesn’t do a great job, we do let him brush his own teeth. On the days he doesn’t want to, I force it. I’ve become an expert at holding the face properly so that I can brush his teeth. He is thrilled that he can do this himself though, reaching his toothbrush into the water (later, we will concentrate more on water conservation, haha)!

On the other end of the spectrum, diaper changes are much less fun, often with him screaming the entire time unless we’ve given him sufficient distraction, like a particular book, the buckle on the table, or mobile remote; whatever it is, he needs to pick it out.

This month, in a very anticlimactic way, we stopped bottles. Now, we read about 10 books at night instead of 1 to allow him time to drink his milk. It takes him longer, but he falls asleep without issue. Except for naps, which he has refused on rare occasions. This makes me nervous that we will lose naps in the near future, but so far, so okay.

 

Overall, discipline is still pretty light. We say no sternly (and fairly frequently), and physically stop him from whatever he is doing wrong. It’s typically just because something is dangerous. If it’s excessive (like biting, which only seems to happen during teething — but for some reason happened twice this weekend in excitement!), then we put him in a corner. But we don’t otherwise restrain him, so he quickly gets over it and moves on. I wonder when we might have to bring out a timeout chair, or a gated area, but for now, he is listening okay most of the time. He actually doesn’t try to run away outside often anymore if we tell him no.

If he gets himself too worked up over something (like wanting a snack, and not taking our no for an answer) and tries to throw a mini tantrum (mini because he is so careful and funny about it), then we take him into the bathroom with the lights off and shut the door (with us there holding him). Usually that’s enough to snap him out of it, which is all that’s needed and a moment of quiet.

Jameson is a little helper, both at home and at daycare. His teachers comment how he is the only one who will help pick up toys (and we only reinforce this lesson every once in a while at home, so I am excited to see that he seems to come by this naturally; I will take no credit for it). At home, he will help me put away the dishes (I let him, yes, but take the breakables from him pretty quick. He has yet to drop anything).

He also threw a pair of shorts in the washer. Yesterday, his teacher told me that he wanted to help check for messy diapers and tried to lift one of the boys who can’t walk yet out of the wagon. Recently, he held one of the new kids’ hand and walked him around the room, like he was showing him around.

 

It’s been such fun watching him grow, but I can’t believe that next month we’ll hit a big 2-0.

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Party Weekend

Last weekend was a party weekend! On Saturday the 30th, we went to an old co-worker-friend’s surprise birthday party! Frank was turning 50, and was totally in shock. It was also fun to see other old friends from those days when I was the intern dating the full time employee… those were the good old days ūüėČ

Jameson mostly ate pineapple and pretzels with the salt scraped off of them, and played with another empty bubble container. (That was fun, walking into the house with all those people and emptying a brand new bubble container)

He was great for the most part, until the end. Then we commandeered a stroller from one of our friends for him to settle down a bit, and he was entertained by their daughter. They played the “dropsy” game over and over again. At least, Jameson did, and Abigail obliged!

Sunday we were excited to fry another turkey for a party at JP and Lisa’s house. Friends Rob and Christina came up from Florida for another visit, so we were very excited to get all the boys together again + the new lady miss Vivienne!

When we arrived, everyone was already there. At first, Jameson was extremely shy. I was surprised, since I assumed that since he was in daycare, he would naturally be more outgoing. But he has a definite stranger awareness now, and he didn’t remember our recent visit, or the activity scared him at first.

Within about 15 minutes, he was collecting toys to stack, and within the hour, he was playing with the other boys.

(Kitchens are full of good toys. I liked that JP and Lisa let Jonathan get into the cupboards like Brian and I do for Jameson at home. This totally occupied them for 15 minutes)

I will say that for a few small exceptions, Jameson is a very good toy sharer. And even though he was afraid of the baby, he gave her her toy back after she lost it and cried out, pointing at it.

A note: One of the most valuable lessons we took out of sign language class were learning that babies and toddlers don’t understand sharing. What they can understand is taking turns, and that is what we’ve emphasized (not using the work share) in dealing with Jameson sharing. And since he frequently changes his mind and moves onto something else, its very easy for him to give up his turn for a little while.

Here is Vivienne, showing off her two bottom teeth. She’s just couple couple months shy of one year old, can you believe it?! She loved the ball, and she also enjoyed hanging onto a little car. She’s a pro crawler now.

Well, there was a turkey being fried somewhere during this time but I only got the finished product:

Jameson sat nicely on the table for about ten seconds before he wanted to walk around and eat, so we brought him on our laps. He enjoyed the fried squash (yellow; if it was green, he didn’t want it).

Jonathan however ate at the table, and he very much enjoyed the turkey…

After dinner, Bobby and Jonathan soaked themselves in the sprinkler, but Jameson wanted nothing to do with it. I was disappointed, though it was kind of ironic since Jameson was the only one in a swimsuit.

Jameson was more interested in rocks, and the slide.

Jameson’s gotten very good at the slide. He can get his legs out from beneath him now without help, and goes down without hold anyone’s hand (most of the time). A recent daycare report said he went down the big spiral slide they have in the gym all by himself!

After everyone was dry and inside, we decided to take some group photos. Last time, the boys were happy enough to lay on the ground for our photo.

This time, we were simply impressed they were all sitting still, let alone smiling! Lisa was a brilliant attention- and smile-getting clown; she was fabulous.

I cranked my ISO way up for that shot so I could capture it in natural light; but I’m not too happy with the grain. Next time I’ll bring my flash for sure, but it still turned out great. Please note that last time, Jameson was the only one missing pants, but this time he was the only one with pants! One of these days, we’ll all the get the right pants memo.

And next time, we’ll be sure to get these shots with Vivienne in them too; unfortunately, they had to leave before we thought to get a group shot!

We followed the shots of the three together with the adults, but that was much less successful.

The ladies were better at it ūüėČ

Also, I totally cheated for that smile. I tickled Jameson’s armpits. He’s ticklish there, and it works for a smile without fail most every time.

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June 15: Bruises, Bubbles and Buddies

On an everyday summer evening, such as June 15, I pick up Jameson from school (aka daycare) and bring him home to enjoy the last hours of sunlight before and after dinner.

(On a slightly atypical day, I pick up Jameson and find that he has an incident report. Obviously, we had one when he lost his tooth, but occasionally we get reports that he fell or otherwise injured himself.)

Conveniently right before his 18 month photos, he developed an egg-shaped bruise smack in the middle of his forehead.

That’s one heck of a mugshot! His teachers kindly iced it on and off throughout the day to reduce the swelling, and it wasn’t nearly as bad the next day as it first appeared.

 

Back to our now slightly atypical evening, Jameson usually plays before and after dinner outside if the weather is nice.

Recently, he has a new obsession with the empty bubble container. Neighbor Kelly was emptying bubbles into their bubble leaf blower for Lily, and Jameson insisted on playing with the empty container for the rest of the evening (and on into the following days).

…By the end of this weekend, he was able to screw and unscrew the lid perfectly.

Oh yes, on a typical evening, after dinner he may also have a different outfit on than before. Messy kid. Like last night, we had couscous. It was EVERYWHERE.

I call this his “lounge wear,” and we decided on this particular day to go on a walk with it on as well. (Here he is, showing us where his belly is at — and holding my work badge)

As luck would have it, Jameson’s friend Nathan from daycare was out as well. They live a couple streets over, and often play outside in the summer. However, Nathan was recently pulled out of daycare (just for the summer), so Jameson hasn’t gotten to see his partner in crime quite as much.

Jameson isn’t real shy about playing with other kid’s toys. Maybe a little shy about other kids, but the toys are a free-for-all in his mind.

Nathan has a big sister who was out too. She was wearing a helmet, so Nathan wanted to wear his as well. Too cute!

Nathan’s family just put in a new sprinkler system (just in time for this hot spell we are in!). Jameson, since his trip to the splash pad, is showing a lot less fear on that end and loves to put his hand in the hose, and the sprinkler system as well.

We were out a little late on this perfect summer evening, but that’s okay because it was filled with play time with friends!

And, I got Nathan’s mom’s phone number, a real milestone for this working mom! Now, one of these days, I have to actually pick up that phone to call…

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(Almost) A Year and a Half

At some point, you stop counting the months and start rounding. It’s starts at half years, and then eventually it’s just full years. As an adult, I don’t go around telling people that I’m 27 and a half. (I’m not, I’m just 27, just turned so a month ago if you’re counting)

Jameson is 17 months. A neighborhood lady asked me, and I said “a year and a half.” He seems so grown up! (Don’t laugh)

This month was a special growing up month for Jameson since he began sleeping on a cot for naptime, lost his very first tooth and got his first real haircut!

In addition, he gave up the bottle, for the most part. We are still giving him a bottle at night before bed. Our intention was over this next month to wean him from that, but since our vacation was canceled so we could attend Brian’s grandfather’s funeral yesterday, we are waiting until vacation next month. Brian’s parents will be watching him, and we want to make the bedtime routine easy for them!

He has started using utensils more consistently. His teacher at school told me they think he is left handed since he grabbed a spoon with his left the other day. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that she is wrong on a few counts.

He has been switching back and forth on hands for utensils that we have been giving him all this month; and children don’t settle on a hand for sure until they’re 3. So I read, anyway. Regardless, he’s getting pretty good and messy with the spoon and has fun with the fork. Jameson still doesn’t like us to help him a lot, he is very independent.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFbkaVrU7co]

Jameson does let us help him up and down high places and stairs, thankfully. He is also getting good making those steps, but he needs to grow a bit more before that will be comfortable for him. By that time, I’m sure he’ll be off and running up and down stairs like he’s been doing it for months (because he has, with our help!)

He loves to wave now. When I tell him to “wait” he often “waves” instead, mistaking my direction. When I tell him to say “hi”, he waves! I think that may count as a sign in addition to his “more”, “all done”, “no” (shaking head) and “eat” regular signs.

Yesterday, we discovered that Jameson also signs “please” now. He must have learned it at school, since we haven’t had sign language classes in a while. It was so gratifying to see that “please”, and so unexpected. Of course, he got more teddy grahams!

As for regular words, we can identify a lot of words when he is repeating us, but it is so much harder to tell what he is saying when he is babbling (though it seems he knows what he is saying). Words we have identified that he says with some regularity:

Cheeeeeese (for pictures, this is our newest and I think school taught him that), Yes/Yeah, Bath, Bottle, Bear and/or Blanket, Dog has turned into Doggie, Daddy which often sounds like Doggy, Mommy, Juice, Milk, Uh Oooooh, Yucky/Dirty

Jameson has been blowing kisses now for a couple months, but I love these pictures that capture him doing it.

Jameson is walking around everywhere confidently. He outgrew his very first pair of walking shoes, which he also made a hole in the toes last week (we thew them away, not a whole lot of sentimentality here). We bought him the same Stride Rite kind, in a different color half a size up. He’s now a 5, and in 5-1/2 shoes.

He recently likes to walk on his tippy toes which makes us laugh, though we are hoping he’ll stop that soon. We try to let him be barefoot more often at home since he’s in shoes all day at school.

Jameson has finally started mastering the real shape sorter instead of just the coins in the faux piggy (cow) bank which he mastered months ago. He used to give up, impatient with it, after the first try. We are starting to see some maturity (yes). He will sit still with it for longer periods of time, and he has begun putting his toys away when asked! He gets less distracted on the way.

He’ll even bring me books with or without prompting, and return them to the book basket when we’re finished. Right now, I have a singing book he loves. It is the longest book he’ll sit through that doesn’t have a touch and feel feature. It is the baby belluga book based on the Raffi song which I grew up with. I don’t need Raffi to help me sing along with this book, and Jameson will sit through me singing the whole thing, asking for more two or three times.

Shall I go on? I really could, he develops so much every day. Those are just a few highlights. I can’t wait to see him at 18 months, a true 1-1/2; it seems like each month is better than the last.

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