Steps to Toddler-hood

Jameson isn’t quite walking yet, but he’s so close!

January 7, he took two steps from the couch to Brian; a week prior he had taken one accidental step to me. Last week, it was three steps, and yesterday? A record breaking 5-1/2!


He only wants to do it when we set him on his feet away from us. Sometimes, not even then. He’ll bounce up and down instead of standing up straight. But, yesterday at daycare the ladies tried to get him to walk to me, but he went to the floor and crawled over instead. So they are working on him too!

It probably helps that he is finally keeping on his skidders. We needed something to stay on his feet, and finally found the combination of socks + skidders stay on all day. I’m not a huge fan of the skidders since you pay quite a bit and they seem to deteriorate pretty quickly, but so far they are working until we get proper shoes for a little walker.

A little walker. Soon!

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The Endless Question

Yesterday, Jameson had a wonderful day at daycare.

We get a sheet documenting his day. In addition to notes about his diapering and eating habits, we get details about his mood (always marked happy even if he’s been fussy), activities, and a special custom note at the bottom. I save all these sheets since he started at this new daycare about 6 months ago, intending to use them in his digital scrapbook.

His little note yesterday read: Today we had music class! Jameson loved to play with the shakers. It was his first music class.

Yesterday, he also got an extra note attached to his standard sheet. It reads:

I just wanted to let you know that Jameson had a fantastic day today! He was all smiles, and gave hugs and waves to everyone he saw. He did great with his bottles and fell right asleep at naptime. He is starting to get jealous though when the teachers are with the other children. Overall he did really well today and I just wanted to let you guys know.

On top of this great news (even the jealous part, because to me it means he is really loving his teachers there), they also had a gift for him for his first birthday. They gave him a book, and a little photo album with pictures from him while he was at the daycare.

It made me cry a little bit (I’m tearing up again now). These are moments that I missed. And these are moments that wouldn’t have happened at all if I was staying at home with him.

I’d by lying if I didn’t say I still have mixed feelings most days about him being in daycare. Especially when he is teething and cranky. I can joke about dropping him off on those days so that I don’t have to “deal with it”, but truth is, I’d rather be dealing with it.

But I have no doubt that I’d be just as torn staying home: feeling like I didn’t appreciate him as much, wishing for adult company, resenting my perception of my own reduced value.

There doesn’t seem to be any easy answer. It’s the same question one year out.

I often wish something would happen to remove my choice entirely, like that would make it easier. If I couldn’t afford daycare, or if we depended on my income to survive.

I am aware that I am making the smart, financially sound choice. But sometimes I attribute my mediocrity at work to a quiet plea to remove me from the position I’m in, where everyday that I come in, I feel like I am making the choice to be richer in lifestyle and perhaps poorer in life.


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1 Month to Go

Well, today Jameson turns 11 months old, and I would never have been able to guess this time last year what this year had in store for us.

When we first started trying, I had several requirements I gave to Brian: No September/late August birthdays, because of the school cut off. Preferably no birthdays in the summer either. And Nothing was more important than making sure we didn’t have a Christmas Baby.

Of course, we found out we were due Dec. 23 and I yes, I was tracking, and yes, it was preventable. But after a few months of negative testing,  you aren’t worried as much about the date of your baby’s birth.

Now, I didn’t end up having a Christmas Baby. But still, I kind of like that Jameson’s birthday falls at the end of the year. It’s a nice time when we’re already excited for the Holidays, for snow and Christmas lights and all those things you only get to break out for a short time (except Christmas music: yes I am one of those already listening to it). Jameson will always have a birthday during a season of celebration, and that is pretty awesome.

Jameson’s photo shoot today was fabulous. I got him right after he woke up and he was so cheerful and happy, it was wonderful. I took less photos and got better poses from him than I have in the past few months since he started trying to chew on the blocks.

At 11 months, Jameson enjoys sitting in the corner we actually made for the pup Sasha. The first couple times he went in the corner he giggled to himself like crazy. Aside from the corner, he likes to spin in circles on his butt, “wrestle” with dad, and there is nothing better than sneaking in a pet of Sasha before she runs away (and she runs away a lot now). He is learning how to open drawers and cabinets, so we are going to get baby locks on those very shortly.

Today I thought he might for the first time stack his blocks instead of just knock them over, but he’s not quite there yet!

He likes to say Ga and Ba a lot, but we don’t think they mean anything in particular yet.

Jameson loves to look at the pictures in books, particularly the baby touch and feel books. We have two, and he flips back and forth, turning the pages like they’re magic.

One thing we’ve been struggling with is nap time at daycare. He has recently started taking one long nap around noon or one, but he is exhausted by evening and cranky. We are trying to switch him back to a two nap schedule, but it affects his eating! I’m sure it will all work itself out soon though.

Jameson occasionally doesn’t care for the car seat and does that sneaky stiff-baby move, but he’s not strong enough (yet) to cause any big trouble. He also is needier and likes to be picked up and held, so he gets to play on mom’s lap in the evenings a lot until he decided that it actually is more fun to be able to move around and explore himself.

This photo shoot he rocked himself back and forth to make the glider move!

I can’t wait to see what’s in store for us this month!

Happy 11 months Jameson!

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Yesterday, we came home with a progress report on Jameson. Presumably, because he is nearly 11 months old, he naturally has Mastered many important things like rolling over, moving toys from hand to hand, and yes, he has no separation anxiety.

On the “Introduced” scale, they are teaching him to use gestures to tell them what he wants. Good luck, since Jameson has never imitated me before on anything. Imitating the dog, sure…

They tell me his new favorite game is to (proudly) take all the toys off the shelves, then select one toy (usually a stacking cup) and carry it in his mouth around the room. Mom is so proud.

There looks to be one girl amongst the passel of boys.

Jameson is in the top right, next to his partner in crime Nathan, and one baby away from their other friend Logan. All three of these babies can crawl now so they like to get into mischief together.

I’ve come in the room with them playing at the door to the changing room, banging away.

Jameson loves the daycare, and I have to say I really like the idea of him having friends in the daycare too. The more days that go by, the more okay I am with this whole daycare thing.

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Signing Smart-ly

A while back I mentioned that Jameson and I were doing a sign language class associated with Signing Smart. Well, that class ended on Saturday. No, my child is not a signing genius. He actually doesn’t sign at all.

I did expect that though, so I’m not too disappointed. And to be honest, Jameson has never really imitated me at anything. He doesn’t wink, blow kisses, wave hi, or anything. I think Brian’s mom taught him out to blow raspberries  spit at me, so there is that.

Check it out, all the babies are actually looking at the camera. That is once in a lifetime!

I had a lot of fun. 10 weeks was a big time commitment, but I only missed one class. I am glad I did it, even though I am not sure that I have stuck with the signing enough to get benefit out of it from Jameson later. However, I heard there was a lot of improvement in the older kids, so I am considering returning to take the class again after the New Year.

Here’s what I did get out of it:

  • Interacting with other adult human beings with children
  • Seeing Jameson improve in his motor skills over the course of 10 weeks (and people commenting on it)
  • Loved watching Jameson interact with his environment, the children, and the toys. He does this all day at daycare that I never get to see, so this was my opportunity
  • Singing stupid songs as a group without feeling embarrassed
  • Learning a few signs (a lot didn’t stick with me, but more will next time, I am sure)
  • Watching other kids grow and develop – particularly the teacher’s son Ian closest to Jameson in age.

All in all, it was worth it. I’m happy it’s done for now though, and I have free Saturdays. It was rough at 10am every Saturday because that is always when Jameson needed to nap.

As Brian and I discussed this while driving to my friends Joni and Justin’s new house on Saturday, Brian thought it might be a good idea to do some swimming lessons with Jameson.

My immediate response: But of course I’d love to jump in my bathing suit once a week. Are you going to take him every week?

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Digital Scrapbook: Sneak Peak!

Today, I have finally started working on Jameson’s scrapbook. It’s a digital scrapbook and it’s gonna be huge. But no bigger than 60 pages (30 front/back), because that’s what the book I’m making allows. Or… maybe I’ll just make two? We’ll see how it goes.

So far I have done birth, family introductions, Christmas, Jameson’s photo shoot, one week, and his first bath and walk!

Last names were removed in the layouts for privacy reasons, but the images are all true to what it will look like once printed. I’m pretty pleased with how its turning out, though I am not sure where I will find the time to catch up to where I should be.

Next up:

  • Jameson’s weekly photo shoots, which I did until he was 10 weeks old. I think I’ll roll that into 2 pages
  • Jameson’s monthly photo shoot, 1 page for each month
  • Great-grandpa’s 90th birthday party… and more!

Today, Jameson went to daycare while I had off work so that I could work on this without interruption. We did pick him up early, and then his Aunt Melissa came to babysit him while Brian and I went with the neighbors for dinner at Great Lakes Brewery in Cleveland. It was a hike, but so worth it. I had their butternut squash ravioli, and since we were at a brewery, I had some beer as well. I hear that some beer increases milk supply…? haha.

If I have time over this holiday weekend I’ll continue working on the scrapbook but the blog will be on a short hiatus until Tuesday. Don’t worry though, I’ll have some good stuff lined up for next week! Have a great 4th of July everyone.

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Changing Routines, Choosing Daycares

Brian and I made the choice well before our baby was born to send him to daycare. We sort of tried to get Brian’s mother to take the responsibility at least a couple days a week, but his parents (as in love with their grandson as they are!) are in the prime of their fun traveling years and couldn’t commit.

Fair enough. So who else can be as good a mom as me to my son?

I briefly debated about a nanny or a home-run childcare. But I believe in safety in numbers (so-to-speak) and child/teacher ratios and even germs (that was all theoretical until Jameson brought home his first cold, haha) and so daycare it was. And Brian and I got so lucky. More lucky than I think we realized, until I had to go select a new one. Because I’m changing jobs.

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Everybody’s Working for the Weekend


This week went by fairly quickly though actually. Hopefully soon I’ll be able to share some fun news, I am crossing my fingers and toes.

Last Saturday, Jameson visited with his friend Jonathan again. Jonathan is getting so big; he’s also a very hungry little boy! He had 8 oz of formula/milk just while we visited that evening! Meanwhile, Jameson’s pretty casual about his eating (until he gets really hungry like at night). Oh, you would like to feed me now?  Okay, I’m game.

Lisa has to go back to work soon, and I know that’s rough, so we definitely wanted to have a fun night with them before their routine changes again. I think sometimes that’s the hardest part. Not really leaving them (because sometimes it’s nice to leave them, really), but it’s just changing up the routine.

And on Monday we finally got to visit with Carrie and Matt and Jameson’s new friend, Nicholas. Nicholas is 2 months old but very alert. Him and Jameson had a little staring contest, it was funny to see them so aware of each other.

This week was also exciting for Jameson; he got to go in the exersaucer at daycare! The exersaucer is the round toy-filled fun standing seat. It helps them practice putting weight on their legs while being surrounded by super fun toys. So Brian put together our exersaucer at home and put a blanket underneath because even at the lowest setting he wasn’t quite touching the ground. Jameson immediately started reaching for the toys. I have a couple photos to post soon.

I also want to share my new favorite site, It’s like a bookmark in that you save sites you visit, but it’s all about the images. So I have some new inspiration boards, particularly for our basement which will eventually finish off, and also for Jameson’s first birthday party (it’s never too soon!)

Tonight we’re seeing Jameson’s great Aunt Carol and cousins. It will be a fun visit! And tomorrow we’ll be doing our longest drive with him yet, to visit his great grandma and more aunts and cousins! It will be a fun filled Easter weekend for him, full of family and up to 6 month clothing (since I finally washed it all haha). And maybe he’ll sleep through the night again? He did last night! but not earlier this week, so maybe it’s wishful thinking.

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A 4 Month Recap

This past week, I realized that I haven’t taken as many photos of Jameson this month as in previous months. It must be because of going back to work, but it made me a little sad because Jameson is so much more active and aware now. I weighed him and he is about 12-1/2 pounds right now. One of the biggest changes this month since he started daycare is his “tummy time”. He will now stay on his tummy for minutes at a time, and his head is way up, about 90 degrees (though not consistently the entire time he’s on his belly). Some of his recent photos demonstrate this, but I love this one from his 4 month photo shoot this weekend.

The second biggest change this past month is the development of his napping schedule. I think I’ve talked about this a couple times already, but okay, it’s still not really a schedule, but at daycare he will sleep 2-3 hours at a time, and at home on the weekends he’ll nap for 30-45 minutes at a time. That may not seem like a big change at home, but he is napping in his crib!

Jameson’s bedtime is also gradually getting earlier. We’re working our way to an 8 o’clock bedtime. A couple weeks before starting back to work, we started him at a real bedtime and routine at 10. Since then we dropped to 9 after daylight savings, and now on most nights it’s 8:30. I’ve been avoiding an earlier bedtime, fearing that he’ll wake up twice at night, but the past two nights he has slept through the entire night (not just the 5-6 hours that doctors consider “through the night”, but a full 8-9 hours) Hopefully the trend continues and it wasn’t just because it was the weekend and he didn’t have as many naps during the day!

His photos on Saturday made him look so big! I put him in shoes, and a white button up onesie which my mom ironed for me last weekend when they were here. It was his “alternative” baptism outfit. He sat there with his little knee upright without my posing. And what a smile, right at me and the camera! He was sitting still enough there’s no blurriness.

Compared with his previous month photos below. I think I’ll have to do a little collage at the end for his 1st birthday party or something.

Can I just point out too, how my photo taking and editing is getting so much better? Look at how yellow the earlier photos are. I’m going to have to go back and re-edit some of those good ones!

In other news, Brian and I left his with Brian’s mom last Monday night while we went to the PACE Awards! Brian’s company didn’t win a trophy, but they did get a plaque, which is wonderful considering they go through thousands of applicants. There were a lot of engineers there, and we saw some great new innovations coming to the auto industry! A couple of my favorites (ie., I could understand what the innovation actually was) were the inflatable seat belt, which is effectively an airbag for the rear seat passenger, coming out on a Ford model. And also the high beam headlights which you don’t need to turn off because they automatically adjust the angles to avoid direct lighting in oncoming traffic, coming in a Mercedes model.

It was fun to get dressed up, and we met with Brian’s client and his wife, some other co-workers who I have met before, and his CEO and his wife. It was wonderful to be able to talk about Jameson (actually having something to talk about).

Jameson did great, and Becky successfully put him to bed without us for the first time. When we left he was giving his grandma all kinds of giggles so I knew he would be fine. He woke up when we got home for a feeding, and slept the rest of the night. The latter half of last week was a little rough on me though for lack of sleep since we got home so late. It was nice to sleep in on Saturday while Brian took Jameson, and I let Brian sleep in on Sunday. This is usually how our weekends go these days, taking turns.

This weekend, Brian has off on Good Friday and will be brewing beer (he says this batch will be a citrus-y IPA); on Saturday we are hopefully going to visit Jameson’s great grandma and more extended family who he hasn’t met yet; and Sunday will be a relaxing day after church for Easter. I am getting two pansy baskets in memory of Brian’s grandpa and my grandma. If it’s nice, I have been thinking about planting lettuce in either a basket over the railing of the porch or in a pot if their roots need more space. I got the idea from a recent Better Homes & Gardens issue. (like this but a little different).

Also, hopefully this week we will finally get to meet little Nicholas; our friends had their baby over a month ago now and due to a series of unfortunate illnesses (us and then them!) we haven’t been able to get together. Hopefully tonight will be the night!

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Jameson’s Baptism Weekend

Jameson had a great weekend (and we did as well!). On Saturday, we visited my grandma’s house which we are still cleaning out as its for sale, and Jameson got to meet his great-great aunt Dee (my grandma’s sister). It was really nice to see her, though it is still unfortunate that he never got to meet his great grandmother and being in her house made it a little sad.

He was in a great mood this weekend, even though he didn’t nap very well at all on Sunday! On Saturday, he mostly slept in the carseat because we were on the move so much, first during shopping on Saturday morning and then to grandma’s and back. Sunday he only slept for five 30 minute naps! Usually at daycare he sleeps in a 2 or 3 hour chunk, twice a day.

I think Jameson loved seeing all those people smiling at him on Sunday! He saw both his grandmas and grandpas and his aunts, and his great aunt and uncle! It was disappointing that my brother couldn’t make the trip, since he missed a lovely family photo with Jameson and his family. My dad hadn’t seen Jameson since he was born so it was great he got to see him.

He didn’t fuss much at all, and he slept right through the baptism, waking up at the end of the service. What a little angel! He wore his little bonnet, which was almost too small for him, so it was great that he was able to wear it. Pastor Mike made it fun like usual, and invited the congregation’s children up in aisles so they could see. Pastor Mike even integrated Jameson’s baptism into the sermon, which was really good this week. I was proud to have family with us and see what a great friendly church we attend! Jameson got a certificate, and a keepsake candle and medallion.

I have a better photo of his hat close up, but I didn’t post it to flickr, so here’s one farther away with Pastor Mike. This is the hat that mom made out of my baptismal handkerchief, and gave it to me for his baby shower.

I am so happy to have a nice family photo of just us too; every photo of the 3 of us has been with him sleeping. He was actually alert in this photo, looking around. These photos in the church were hard to edit; the lighting was so weird! I finally got some natural looking skin tones though.

Earlier that weekend, there was some drama on my part trying to decide what he should wear! I had a sweater outfit for him but of course, the weather didn’t cooperate and it was going to be 80 that day! So he wore it that morning but we changed him when we got home. He had little red cheeks most of the day, he certainly wasn’t used to that kind of heat. But I don’t really know why I was so concerned about what he was going to wear, things worked out just fine. Seems like I am often concerned about things that end up fine, particularly where Jameson is concerned. I did buy him a spare outfit which I had mom iron (yes, a baby shirt was ironed). He’ll wear that for his four month photos on Saturday. I can’t believe he’s almost 4 months!

It was so nice though that it was warm. We had the windows open and had a family lunch with spiral ham, pasta salad, baked beans and appetizers, with cheesecake for dessert. Later, we went on a walk while Brian fixed brakes on his car. A great end to a great day!

Tonight, Brian and I are driving 3 hours away for an awards dinner/ceremony for his work! They have been nominated for an award. It is a black tie event, so I am really excited to get dressed up. Jameson will be staying home with Brian’s mom and she is super excited to babysit. It’s the farthest we’ve ever been from him, and the longest we’ve both been away at one time, so I’m sure I will be nervous but it will be good to be away for a little while. Can’t wait!

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