Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Seven Month Old Caleb

Caleb turned seven months old April 23rd. There was no well baby check-up scheduled this month and I didn't bother to take him to get weighed. I guess this is the first month I don't have any "stats" on him! I can tell you that he is now wearing 6-12 mon. and 6-9 mon. clothes. I have put away all of the six month and under clothing. It is hard to believe that we have already filled up a large plastic bin full of clothes that he has outgrown in only 7 months' time!

Hanging with Mom at Emily's Preschool Spring Sing

His sleeping and eating schedules are roughly the same. He normally wakes up once during the night. For the past two nights, he has slept from about 7:30pm-7 am. (Hope I didn't jinx us.)  If I would just go to bed early at 9 or 10pm, I could easily get about seven hours of uninterrupted sleep because it seems like 4 or 5 am is often the time he wakes up at night. But stubbornly, I wait for Jeremy to come up to bed and usually don't go to sleep until 11:30 or 12. I don't know why I do that to myself. I need more sleep!

We started solids when Caleb turned six months old. It took him a good two weeks to "get it." I was almost starting to worry about him and then he started to eat. Initially, he pushed almost everything out of his mouth and was pretty uncoordinated with his tongue. He wouldn't open his mouth to the spoon and often pursed his lips tightly closed and looked away! It was pretty obvious that he wasn't very interested. We tried a number of foods and he frowned and made the most disapproving faces! So, he's only been eating well for the last two weeks and we haven't built up much of a variety yet. He is so cute now as he opens his mouth wide like a baby bird. So far he really likes oatmeal baby cereal mixed with breast milk, apples, pears, peaches, carrots, and sweet potatoes. He has tried avocados and bananas. We are adding green beans and peas this week. For the past two weeks, he has had solid foods twice a day. We will probably add a third solid food feeding this month. I haven't made any of his baby food other than the pureed bananas and avocados. I hope to do a little more of that once Caleb is eating more.

Caleb got his first teeth right at seven months! The two bottom ones came in at exactly the same time.

Caleb is a proficient belly slider! He scoots himself along pretty well if he wants to get to a toy or has some other motivation! It won't be long before he is crawling and we have to put up the stairs gates again. It has been SO nice to not have stair gates for over a year! We finally got out the exersaucer and he loves standing in that and playing with all the toys. He loves swinging at the park next to big sister. That is the only thing they can do at the playground together right now, but I know that will change fast. 

We had a 6 1/2 month photo shoot at Dede Holman's and I'm planning to order those photos this week. 

Caleb started saying "baba" and "dada" this month. His babbling is starting to sound more like actual words.

Dear Caleb,

At seven months old, you are completely charming! You smile when people talk to you. You love our morning walks in the stroller and fall asleep almost every time. You like to play peek a boo, especially with Daddy. You are quick to laugh when we tickle you or play bouncy games with you. We all adore you. Emily fluctuates back and forth between being too rough and being very tender and attentive. I'm hoping that her rough house play will make you stronger.

I'm trying to read to you more. I want you to be as verbal as your big sis. You still spit up on me, but not as often. You got me pretty good today while I was out shopping for Dinkney's birthday gift. Good thing I was still in my work-out clothes which I pretty much live in.

We are having a ball together this spring. We have so much to look forward to this summer. Can't wait to take you swimming at Lakeside! I'm thankful all the time for my sweet son who is healthy, happy, and handsome!



Monday, April 29, 2013

Seven Years and Seven Months

*** We only took photos on the i-phone for our anniversary trip which I may or may not upload to blog. Sorry for text heavy post!

April is one of my favorite months. So many things to be happy about--warm weather, flowering trees, daffodils and tulips, Derby Festival, outdoor picnics, and our anniversary! This year Jeremy and I celebrated our 7th anniversary. Caleb turned seven months old the day after our anniversary. Mom agreed to watch the kids on our anniversary weekend months ago, but I was undecided about what to plan for us.Originally, I thought we would go to a Weekend to Remember conference in Indianapolis. It is a Christian marriage conference that I've wanted us to attend for awhile. Even though we have a great marriage, I think that there are always ways to grow closer to one another and to God. So that was our original plan until about a month before our anniversary and we realized we weren't looking forward to our trip. We really didn't want to be stuck in a conference hall listening to lectures about marriage when we have so little fun time alone together. So, we more or less decided, "Nah, we're good. Let's do something fun instead!"

Since we needed to drop off the kids at Mom and Dad's, it was a logical choice to keep heading south to Nashville.  We wouldn't have to back track and it was just an hour away from Bowling Green. Neither of us has spent much time in Nashville. I grew up just an hour away, but in high school I was too young to take road trips there with my friends. My facebook friends gave us great ideas for lodging, restaurants and things to do in Nashville. We wanted to stay downtown, but when I started looking for hotels a couple of weeks before our trip everything was booked! I finally found a lovely bed and breakfast in Franklin, TN called Butterfly Meadows Inn and Farm. The reviews of the place were wonderful and they had one more room left for our weekend. We quickly snatched it up!

Butterfly Meadows Inn and Farm

Our B&B was about 8-10 minutes from downtown Franklin and 35 minutes from Nashville. We stopped in downtown Nasvhille Friday afternoon on our way to Franklin. We toured the Ryman auditorium, checked out Hatch Show Print (an awesome old letter press facility), and soaked up the energy of downtown. We headed to Franklin to check in and enjoyed a wonderful dinner at the Red Pony in downtown Franklin that evening. Our suite was clean, spacious, and comfortable. The owners were kind to let me have a small refrigerator in our room so that I could conveniently store the mama milk! I pumped about four times a day. It worked out fine although it will be so nice to get away and not have to worry about pumping. I guess I'm thankful for the breast pump even though I was kind of hating it by the end of the weekend.

On Saturday and Sunday we had the most delicious breakfasts! Drinking coffee and juice during a relaxing, uninterrupted breakfast--what a treat! Best of all, no preparation and no clean up afterwards! We met some other nice folks at the B&B. We met two young married couples in their twenties, an older couple from Gallatin in their 60's, a couple in their 50's combining business and pleasure, and a family with three teenagers that were relocating from California to Franklin. They actually bought a house in Franklin during their trip! Everyone was kind, considerate, and a pleasure to talk to. I think meeting new folks at the B&B adds a nice balance to the alone time we shared on vacation. As much as I love having Jeremy all to myself, it is nice to socialize with others, too.

We spent Saturday morning shopping at downtown Franklin's charming shops. We had lunch at a seafood market, browsed the farmer's market, and shopped the Factory at Franklin (a 12 building complex built in 1929 and former home of Dortch Stove Works.) We rested up during the afternoon at the bed and breakfast. That evening we headed to Nashville to check out the Rosepepper Cantina and Jeni's ice cream in East Nashville. Jeni's ice cream lived up to the hype. The Rosepepper did not. I don't think Nashville has anything on Louisville when it comes to good independent restaurants. Louisville is a great food town! (Just ask Southern Living where we have been listed as one of the South's tastiest towns for several years running!)

Sunday morning we had time for another fabulous breakfast and quick morning hike on the property of Butterfly Meadows. Then, it was time to head back for the kiddos. Emily was so happy to see us! So was Caleb. He kissed me over and over again! We left Nashville/Franklin feeling a bit more rested and reconnected to each other. We definitely wanted to see and do more. A concert at the Ryman is next on our list!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Nap Fairy

About a month ago one of my sweet college friends was lamenting the fact that her two year old triplets were trying to give up their naps. She posted this on facebook and of course a rush of advice and sympathy came crashing onto her page. One of her friends posted that it looked like it was time the triplets learned about the nap fairy. She said that in her house, the nap fairy comes and visits the children every day when they take a nap. The kids leave their shoes outside their bedroom door and the nap fairy fills them with treats. The nap fairy is magic and she knows if they are really sleeping in their bed or just playing and pretending to sleep. She even said that some of her kids' friends want to come take naps at her house so the nap fairy will visit them, too! The best part is that it is snack time AFTER nap time anyway, but the kids don't really need to know that. :)

I read this with amusement and thought, well it is worth a shot. Doubt that it will work, but we'll see. My Emily (3 yrs. 8 mon.) has been a reluctant napper for awhile now. She used to nap really well. Things started to change after she got her big girl bed at around three years old. While we never really had trouble transitioning her from the crib to the twin bed for nighttime sleep, naps were harder. During the day, it was too tempting to keep reading or playing. I tried and tried for her to be independent with going to sleep for naps, but all too many times, I would hear her singing in her room an hour later. Or I would walk in her room and she would be in her bed playing with her dolls, stuffed animals and books. I tried promises of rewards for napping. I threatened punishment. I talked sternly with her giving her the "Mean, Mad, Mama" look. Really, none of that worked. The one thing that kind of worked was lying down with her to nap.

While I was pregnant, I was all too eager to put my feet up and nap with my little girl. I usually napped with her in her bed for about an hour and then I would slip away for her to finish the second hour on her own. It was a nice routine sometimes although there were also days that she would make me lose my mind when it would take her 30-45 minutes to fall asleep. She would toss AND turn AND turn AND toss AND whine AND complain, "I don't wanna nap! (insert pouty face) I'm not tired. I wanna pway [play]!" Uggh. I would think, "Is this even worth it?" Then, she would be more temperamental in the evenings and I just knew it was because she needed a nap. When she fell asleep too late or too long, then she could go all evening until 10pm which wasn't good either.

So, this is why I was eager to give the ol' nap fairy idea a "go." We usually had a snack in the afternoon anyway. Might as well make it a fun reward. The treats didn't always have to be candy. We could also try fruit or stickers or bubbles, etc. Well, it worked like a charm the first day and has been a help ever since. There are still some days that we don't nap because we don't have time due to our schedule. I let Emily pick out what shoes she wants to leave outside her door. I remind her that she "better be asleep by the time the nap fairy flies overhead or our house will get missed." I have been AMAZED at how well it works. The dramatic cries and whines have stopped and she is more agreeable to the idea even on days when she would rather not nap. Best part is I'm not wasting 30 minutes or more of my time cuddling with her until she falls asleep. If I want to or need to cuddle with her, I do, but it is nice to just shut the door and go about what I need to do on most days.

So far, I've not bought anything special for this nap fairy thing. I just use what I have in the house--fruit snacks, a fresh pear or apple, goldfish crackers, a "forgotten" stickers page, etc. Lately I've been slowly getting rid of the Easter candy we still have in the house by filling up a plastic egg with a few jellybeans.

I think that the nap fairy would work best on three and four year olds. I can't imagine that a two year old would be willing to wait so long for their treat as they usually want immediate rewards. I don't know how long this will work for Emily, but if it buys me another week or month or year of good naps, I WILL TAKE IT!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Reflections on my new full time job: SAHM

I've only been a full-time stay at home mom for six months, but I thought I'd write down a few thoughts on how it is going so far. It's hard. Really hard. The on-and-on-ness of it is exhausting (stole that line from Downton Abbey's Dowager Countess.) I can only speak for what my reality has been with a three year old and a baby. Maybe if you only have one kid, it is easy. Maybe if your kids are school age, it's a cake walk, but I doubt it. Seems like every parenting stage has its challenges. So once your kids don't need you for everything but breathing, then they need you for other issues--like dealing with bullying or mastering math skills or shuttling them all across the city for their extracurricular activities. At least most of the issues we have in our house can still be fixed with a hug and kiss (or a nap and a feeding.) However, I could see that if you have a cleaning lady, a chef, and a lot of extra help with the kids, being a stay at home mom would be the "easy" job a lot of the world thinks it is.

One of the frustrating things about being home with the kids more is letting go of the expectations of how you thought things would be. For example, one would think that if you're home more, you will have more time to keep your house clean, right? Wrong. The more you are home, the more opportunity you have to get it dirty. Most days, we have three meals at home. That's preparing three meals and cleaning up after three meals and three opportunities for your three year old to get stuff all over your clean floor. The more you are home, the more toys get dragged out. I could go on and on with examples. Of course I want my home to be neat and tidy, but there are only so many hours in the day and right now a great number of hours are taken up with baby care--nursing, diaper changes, trials of baby food, baths, baby laundry, rocking, reading, playing. Then, there's all the time spent taking care of Emily--preparing her meals, shuttling to/from preschool that is 15 minutes away, playing with her, taking her outside for fresh air and exercise, helping her nap, reading to her, etc.. Then there's all the every day things that must get done--making beds, doing laundry, cleaning up the kitchen, grocery shopping, meal preparation, etc. Now, take away eight hours for sleep (if you're lucky) and some time for a shower for yourself and you're not left with much extra.

Some days I am able to give myself the grace I need when I've had a hard day of parenting. I can say, "Well, the kids are alive and well so that's good enough for today!" Other days I find myself feeling overwhelmed and disappointed in myself. Most of the time, I have a good outlook. I love my family and I love my life. I'm thankful that I'm not also juggling a demanding career. I notice that my attitude sours quickly when I haven't had any time for myself in several days or if I have been stuck inside the house all day with the kids. I need to get outside for fresh air. (Thank God spring is finally here!!!) I need a change of pace and I desperately need exercise. It makes me feel so much better when I can take care of myself. Unfortunately, there are many weeks when I only have two hours ALL WEEK when I'm not taking care of one or both of the kids. Of course I have more time if you talk about when they are asleep at night, but you're still "on call" and at home so I'm not counting that. I get a few hours break when Emily is in preschool, but I still have Caleb. Two hours isn't enough time to keep from going crazy. Two hours isn't enough time to get to all the projects you want to do, but can't do them when you have the kids. I thought that I would be able to accomplish these organization and house decorating projects if I was a stay at home mom, but I find that when I get those precious two hours of me time, I want to RUN AWAY! I want to go to the gym or read a book or buy a new pair of shoes. I don't want to organize the closets or clean windows or clean out the basement during those sacred child free hours.

When I was preparing for my career, I had no idea how much work it was to be a mother. Does anyone ever truly know? Naively I thought that of course I could work full time and have a big family. I didn't realize that even though I COULD work full time and have a family, I might not WANT to. My new mindset is that we have seasons in life and we don't have to do everything during the same season. I have worked for ten years as a physical therapist. Before that, for three years I completed a demanding grad school program and worked some as a waitress. Prior to that, I was a full time undergraduate student and worked part-time as a pharmacy technician. During high school, I waited tables some and babysat while playing two varsity sports. During this season of my life, I'm primarily a mother and wife. At different seasons, I've been a student, an athlete, and a full time working professional. I expect that there will be new seasons when I will work more outside the home. I may take up a new hobby or perhaps volunteer in some meaningful position. My story isn't finished. I'm still trying to figure out how to balance the "me" I was before I had kids and the new "me" that has been changed from the moment my precious little girl was born three and half years ago.

I get glimpses of how life may be one day when the kids are more independent. My oldest can dress herself and take herself to the bathroom. Before long, she won't need me standing over her shoulder to make sure she brushes her teeth right. She won't need me to help her bathe. She won't need me to make her sandwich. Somehow I feel happy and sad all at the same time to know that I won't always be so needed. I think of how much I already enjoy her company as a preschooler and how much I'm going to love being with her as as she grows up. I'm looking forward to hiking with my children in the national parks and serving with them on mission trips. Perhaps we will explore a new country while visiting family. But, I need to not miss the blessings of this time we're in now. Older ladies stop to smile at the children and me all the time when we are out and about. They tell me how beautiful they are. They love to see Caleb's little head poking out of the Ergo carrier as I hold him close to my body. They compliment Emily for being such a good big girl. I will miss those sweet compliments when the two kids walking beside me are as tall (or taller) as I am.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Easter 2013

Easter came kind of early this year at the end of a long March that refused to yield to spring. We kept hoping that the weather would get better, but instead we had more snow in March than we did in December! Easter weekend warmed up a tiny bit and we were thankful. 

I have new appreciation for how my Mom and Dad used to get three kids dressed and ready for Easter morning AND take photos before church. That didn't happen with us. The morning rush was crazier than usual because we had to get two kids dressed in their Easter clothes, eat breakfast, brush teeth, fix hair, nurse Caleb, load up food to take for Easter lunch, load up a diaper bag and changes of clothes for everyone and go through Emily's Easter basket all before 9:40 am. I prepped us much as I could the night before, but at this stage in our lives, it is just very hard to be at our "Sunday best" so early in the morning.

I loved Emily and Caleb's matching Easter outfits. It was only the second time they have had coordinating brother/sister outfits. (The first time was when he was a newborn and I had matching big sis/little brother shirts made.) I know a lot of people don't like their boys to wear Jon Jons and a peter pan collar shirt, but I love this kind of classic outfit for special occasions. Caleb won't be wearing this when he's three years old, but I much prefer this for a baby. I LOVE seeing his sweet little legs. They have been covered up all winter. I'm so glad we can start dressing him in more shortalls. 

All of these photos were taken at Dinkney and Poppy's house after church.

This is one of my favorites of Dinkney and Poppy and the kids

 I have the cutest guys in my life!

 Caleb is very generous with his kisses. Glad we finally captured one on camera.

And he already loves for us to hold him high in the air and bring him down quickly.

 I Love my baby boy! Can't you tell he's mine? 

Jeremy and I are not emphasizing the Easter Bunny with Emily. I don't see how it adds anything to the holiday and if anything, I think it can detract from the true meaning. Emily is just as excited to get a basket from us or her grandparents than some fictional bunny. We read Emily several age appropriate Easter books, both secular and Christian, leading up to Easter. We enjoyed an evening dyeing Easter eggs. She participated in a couple of Easter egg hunts. I enjoy these traditions, but somehow I just couldn't make a big deal about the Easter bunny. Emily didn't ask a lot of questions about it and we didn't make up stories to tell her. What made me most happy was seeing her excitement to show me a paper from Sunday School. She said, "Look mommy, they are saying "Hosanna, Hosanna to Jesus and these are palm branches!"

We allowed Emily to go to "big church" with us on Easter morning. The music is always so beautiful and I wanted to share that with her. We sang all the traditional songs: "Crown Him With Many Crowns," "He Lives," Christ the Lord Is Risen Today," etc. St. Matthews has a tradition to ring bells during the "Alleluiah" part of the latter song. I knew Emily wold love the bells, but was surprised that she didn't want to ring ours. She just stood quietly beside us taking it all in. She was very well behaved although the sermon got a little long for her. We ended the service with Handel's "Hallelujah Chorus" played by the orchestra and sung by the choir and any other church members who knew the parts. I joined in the choir to sing the alto line. Singing songs from The Messiah always brings me back to my college chorale days at Georgetown.

 Checking out their goodies from Dinkney and Poppy

 Kisses from Big Sis.

 Hmm, what did you get Caleb?

 Hmm, what did you get Emmy?

 Sweet brown eyed boy

Happy Easter Everyone!

He Lives

I serve a Risen Savior,
He's in the world today;
I know that he is living,
Whatever men may say;
I see his hand of mercy,
I hear his voice of cheer,
And just the time I need him,
He's always near.

He lives, he lives,
Christ Jesus Lives Today!
He walks with me and talks with me
Along Life's narrow way.
He lives, He lives, salvation to impart.
You ask me how I know he lives:
He lives within my heart.

Rejoice, rejoice O Christian,
Lift up your voice and sing,
Eternal Hallelujahs to Jesus Christ the King!
The hope of all who seek Him,
the help of all who find,
None other is so loving,
So good and kind.

He Lives! (refrain)

*Lyrics by Alfred Ackley

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Happy Half Birthday

Caleb had his half birthday March 23rd and Jeremy and I celebrated that by getting out of town for the day! Ha! Seriously, Mom watched Caleb and Emily for us that Saturday so we could watch the Cards play their 2nd NCAA game at Rupp Arena. It was fun and a wonderful escape from the day to day Mommy duties for me. Although you never really escape so long as you are nursing. I pumped in the car on the way there and back. I have always loved the six month mark. Babies at this age are full of personality and joy. They aren't usually crawling or getting into too much trouble, but have gained the ability to sit up unsupported and play more purposefully with their toys.

We survived the first illness (RSV) without too much difficulty. It was inconvenient, but could have been worse, for sure. Emily has a little cold now which of course Caleb caught, too. I tried to keep her out of his face, but that was futile. Caleb had a fever all day after his six month shots. He was really pitiful yesterday. The timing was strange. I couldn't tell if he was feeling poorly because he caught Emily's cold or if it was from the shots. It all happened at once. I would have never taken him in for his well check-up yesterday if I thought he was sick. Today we are dealing with cold symptoms and a low grade fever.

Height: 26 1/2 in
Weight: 16 lbs 13 oz.
Head Circumference: 16 9/16 in.
Height and Weight are around 50th percentile; 
Head circumference about 25th percentile.

Milestones, Discoveries, and Accomplishments:

~Caleb is sitting up unsupported! He's still a little "tippy," but he can definitely do it. He started doing the tripod sit   at about 5 1/2 months. Now at six months and a week he is sitting up pretty well and holding it for several minutes at a time or until he reaches too far out of his base of support. I still put the boppy around him to help him sit longer while playing. He doesn't usually get too upset when he tips over. He will roll over to his back or belly and keep on playing.

~Rolls easily from back and belly.

~Showing more movements during floor time. I used to be able to leave the room briefly and the little guy would still be in the same position. Now I can leave the room and come back and he has moved two or three feet and isn't on his activity mat anymore.

~We introduced solids on his six month birthday. We have tried oat baby cereal, bananas and pumpkin. He isn't impressed with any of it. I've only been trying solids for a week and I know I must be patient. At this point, he doesn't even really open his mouth when I present the spoon and food. When I manage to get a little bit on his lips and tongue, he just makes a face like "What the heck is that?"

 First feeding. It's like he's saying, "You can't make me!"

 A typical reaction!

~Plays with his feet and toes all the time, but hasn't tried to put them in his mouth.

~I noticed just this week that he appears to be raising his arms for me to pick him up when he's in his bed or on his changing table. I LOVE when babies start to reach out for you to hold them. 

~He's into tags on everything. Loves playing with the taggie toys or any tag on a stuffed animal. I've also noticed him using a raking motion with his fingers to try to "pick up" things. In particular, I've noticed that he sees the fabric pattern on his crib sheet and is trying to pick it up . 

~Vocalizes a lot. Or maybe I should say playfully screams a lot? He is definitely experimenting with the power of his voice. While trying on Easter clothes in a dressing room, I placed Caleb on the floor facing a mirror. He proceeded to scream out loud at his expression for the entire time I was in the store. I had to assure the store clerk that he was fine. Luckily, she had a six month old at home, too, and was sympathetic.

Sleeping Habits:

Caleb takes a morning nap after he has been up for a couple of hours. The morning nap is about 45 min. to one hour although he will occasionally nap longer. He takes his afternoon nap about two hours after the morning nap. Second nap is usually about 12:30 to 2:30. We have a plan A and plan B nap "schedule." Sometimes Caleb cat naps in the car on the way to/from preschool and doesn't get a good morning nap. When that happens, he usually takes a few short "naps" in the car and then a long nap later in the afternoon. Sometimes I like this better because then his nap overlaps with Emily's nap time more. Caleb goes to bed at about 7:30 pm and wakes up 0-2 times at night. Lately, he has awakened at about 4 or 5 am and I will feed him, put him back to sleep and then he wakes up a decent hour later (like after 7 am.) Sometimes he will wake up at around midnight AND early in the morning.  He was sleeping better a few weeks ago than he is now. I am hoping that once he is eating more solids, he will stop waking up as much. Maybe he is going through a growth spurt? I don't know. Hopefully we are not developing bad habits. I know sometimes babies wake up for comfort or habit and it has nothing to do with whether they are hungry or not.

Eating Habits:

Still nurses about every three hours during the day. Sleeps through most of the night with one feeding (or none). Introducing solids now, but we are getting more on his face and bib than in his stomach. I am currently feeding him once a day with solids and plan to bump that up to twice a day as soon as he "gets it." 

Sample "Schedule"

7:30- Wakes up for the day; feeding
9:30-10:30 am: Morning nap
11 am: Feeding
12:30-2:30: Afternoon Nap
2:30 Feeding
5:30 Feeding
7:30 pm Feeding and off to bed! :)
??? another feeding if he wakes up at 3 or 4 or 5 am. Then, back to sleep.

I place "schedule" in parenthesis because this is just a rough approximation of how a day might go. There are a lot of variables, especially how long naps are. I try to stay reasonably consistent with how often he eats and how long he has been awake so he doesn't get too hungry or sleepy. 

First Easter 

And a note to Caleb:

Dear Caleb,

Buddy, what happened? You were sleeping so well and now you are waking me up again! I know you are growing so maybe I need to give you more food or more milk. I know you had a yucky illness, a time change and then another cold so maybe you just need me more right now and that is OK, too. Daddy and I hope you get with the program soon. xoxo. On the positive side, I know I don't get to hold you and rock you as much as I would like during the day so the nights are good for extra snuggles. Thank you for going right back to sleep.

We gave you your first haircut at five and a half months and yes, you needed it! We tried to even up your hair a bit. It was really long over your ears and too long on top, but really short where you had rubbed a bald spot a few months ago. That has filled in nicely now! Ms. Val did a great job and just in time for Easter!

I love that I can carry you on my hip now. You have good head and trunk control! You look so cute and little on my hip. I'm glad that you still like our Ergo infant carrier. I promise we will buy a double stroller for you and Emily soon! Until then, we will take short walks and I'll hold you close to me.

You are such a sweet, happy boy. Even when I'm exhausted, it is easy to look at you and be completely, totally thankful for my son.

Love always,