Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Eight Months and Time Is Going Too Fast

I have no idea how my baby is getting this close to being one year old. It scares me how fast time flies by! Just the other day Jeremy and I realized that we haven't had his baby dedication at church yet. I had hoped to do it around six months of age and now he's already eight months! We had a nice baby dedication for Emily with several out of town family members coming in to see us. We also threw a big open house party for family/friends that Sunday afternoon. If I'm completely honest with myself, the reason I haven't scheduled Caleb's baby dedication is I don't want to plan a big open house party! It is SO much work, but I want to be as fair as possible to do the same things for both kids. Also, things are quite different now. When Emily was a baby, my sister and her family were able to come for the dedication. Well, now she lives overseas. My brother and his wife now have two kids and so it is harder for them to come up for a quick trip. Jeremy's sister's family lives in North Carolina and it is rare for them to be in town. Anyway, I really need to just figure out a date soon because he's growing up way too fast.

Eight month stats:

??? I've had a healthy baby boy and haven't been to the doctor lately. Next well baby check-up is at nine months.
Caleb wears 6-12 mon. and 6-9 mon. clothing. We mostly wear my nephews' hand-me-downs. I have bought very little for him. The grandmothers have bought him a few things and I've bought a couple of special occasion outfits, but almost everything else is from the nephews.

Sleep Habits:

Caleb usually sleeps about 11 1/2-12 hrs. from 7:30pm-7:00am or so. Sometimes he wakes up and cries for us to get him. Often he will wake up and entertain himself for awhile by jabbering or playing with toys. I leave a few safe toys at the far end of his bed for him to play with once he wakes up. This buys Jeremy and me a few more minutes to rest in our bed in the morning if he wakes up in a good mood. Caleb's total nap time is about three hours. Sometimes the morning nap is the long one and other times it is the afternoon nap. He is starting to get attached to a little lovey blanket that was given to him. It is super soft and and small with a little teddy bear head at the end of it. It helps settle him if he's a little restless when we put him down to bed. He clutches it and then he stops crying.

Whoa! Falling Over!
Our favorite photo prop is a baseball.
Eating/Nursing: 

We started solids at six months of age. Caleb now has tried numerous veggies/fruits. He's also had pureed chicken with apple sauce. I have tried giving him little finger foods (puffs, cheerios), but he tends to play with them more than eat them. So at this point, I'm spoon feeding his solids. Jeremy and I laugh at the many sounds he makes while eating. He likes to hold his arms away from his body and wave his wrists up and down and around while eating. It is hard to describe, but totally cute. It's like he's saying, "Bring it on! Keep going!"

Caleb and I are still going strong with nursing. He has about five feedings a day (approximately at 7:30am, 11am, 2pm, 5pm, 7:15pm). I could probably take it down to four feedings/day now that he is eating more solids. I try to pump a few times a week at times I have a little extra milk (like right before bedtime or in the morning). This helps me to have extra on hand for bottles and to use in his baby cereal. I began the weaning process with Emily at nine months of age by supplementing one breast feeding with formula (so I wouldn't have to pump as much at work.) Since I rarely work now, it's really no big deal to just nurse him. Actually it is easier because my milk is always ready to go, perfect temperature and no mess to clean up! Dealing with bottles, measuring formula, washing everything and remembering to pack it wherever we go is harder for me. If I was having to pump all the time, I wouldn't feel the same way.

Milestones, Discoveries and Latest Accomplishments: 

Caleb is a pro at his Army crawl. He is so fast that I don't know if he will switch to a traditional hands/knees crawl any time soon. Lately, he will be on hands/knees and rocking when I go get him out of bed after bedtime or naps.   He is a brave little crawler and now ventures outside of his room (and the soft carpet) down the hallway and into Mom and Dad's room or Emily's room. He hasn't pulled up to stand independently, but he can do so with just a small amount of help. 

He turns 360 deg. while sitting. Jeremy and I get a kick out of watching him turn himself in circles on the kitchen floor. He rotates himself around using his feet and can turn to get toys from different angles. He hasn't learned to gracefully go from sitting to tummy position, but he can do so when he more or less "falls" into that position. Usually when he tips over, he raises his head to keep from hitting the floor.

When we model hand clapping to him, he tries to imitate by slapping his legs. It is pretty cute.

He is developing his pincer grasp. He can pick up small objects with finger and thumb although the motion isn't  very precise yet.

We haven't hit the separation anxiety stage yet. He definitely prefers me if he sees me, but if I'm not around, another attentive adult will do. :) It's nice to be able to drop him off to grandma or the church nursery without having him melt down. 

He enjoys the playground swings with Emily. I take Emily and Caleb to the playground in their little red wagon. The wagon has two seats with seat belts. Caleb looks adorable in it with big sis. It makes me so happy to have two little kiddos in that little red wagon! 

Memorial Day 2013 
I'm a cutie!
Dear Caleb,

So thankful for you, sweet baby! Lately I find myself more aware of how fleeting these baby months/years truly are and I'm trying to soak up all of your cuteness! I feel that I am finally as adjusted as I'm going to be to having a three year old and a baby. Not that I have it completely together, but we manage quite well now. It helps that you are sleeping well and I'm more rested.

You are a content baby and play quite well on your own. Of course you have your high maintenance moments, too! You prefer to sit and play with a group of toys versus standing in your exersaucer. I think you think the exersaucer is too confining because if you get tired of sitting and playing, you can crawl off to some new adventure. Big sis is rougher with you now because I think she sees that you are growing up, too. While she often gets into trouble for knocking you over or handling you too rough, she is also very kind. She willingly shares her toys and fetches your toys to play when you need them. She asks Mommy, "Is it OK for Caleb to play with this or is it too small?" She dotes on you and frequently hugs and kisses you. You light up when she's around and of course you think she is hilarious! You light up whenever any of us talk directly to you. You love the attention and eagerly reply back in your own way.

I'm so thankful it is summer! We take walks to the park almost daily. Mommy's friend and I took you and Emily to the zoo recently. We visited Amber and her kiddos in Bowling Green at Chaney's Dairy Farm. We plan to take you to the ballpark to watch Daddy play. We hope to get to a Louisville Bats game soon. Life is very full! I feel blessed to be your mommy, but at times I am overwhelmed by the responsibility. Such a responsibility has been entrusted to your mommy and daddy from Our Heavenly Father. I pray that Daddy and I give you the best start in life and teach you to love the Lord with all your heart, soul, and mind.

Hugs and kisses,

Mommy

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

A Great Day to be Home with the Kids

A few weeks ago, I wrote about some of the more frustrating aspects of being home with the kids full time. Today I thought I'd share some of the blessings. Every day has its blessings. Sometimes they are just more obvious than at other times. As I write this, it is 3:45 pm. I would have missed ALL of this had I been at work today.

7:15 am Caleb wakes up on his own. Emmy is still dozing from a late night out celebrating Dinkney's birthday yesterday. Jeremy sleepily changes Caleb and brings him to me to nurse in bed. After feeding him, we cuddle in bed for several minutes playing and kissing the little guy who is in the sweetest mood. Emmy wakes up and jumps in bed with us. We don't have much time, but before we have to get ready for the day, we have some good snuggles.

9:15 am After dropping off Emily at preschool, I take Caleb for a long morning walk. He naps on/off in the stroller as I walk 2 1/4 miles at the park. It is a BEAUTIFUL day. Warm, pleasant spring weather. The trees and flowers are blooming. I run into a friend from work on his day off and we walk 10 minutes together catching up on all the work happenings.

10:30 am I feed Caleb on a park bench after my walk. Sip water, read a small devotional, and pray.

12:00 noon I pick up Emily from school. Surprise her with a picnic lunch and a trip to Big Rock in Cherokee Park. She has made a Derby hat and is eager to show me.

12:15 pm We eat lunch as Emily darts back and forth to Beargrass Creek. She just wants to play, but I convince her to eat at least half her sandwich first. Caleb is sitting on a quilt on the ground and chewing on his teether.

12:30 pm I strap Caleb into the Ergo carrier and we all go "hiking" down the pathway that follows the creek. We find a couple of blue bird eggs. We see some dogs splashing in the water. We see a few people, but overall it feels quiet and secluded. It doesn't feel like we are in a huge park in the middle of the city.

1:10 pm Time to go home. We enjoyed sticking our feet in the cool water. Emily could easily stay all day, but Caleb is almost asleep in the Ergo and needs his afternoon nap. We load up and head home.

I could go on with a few more special moments, but you get the idea. It was a beautiful day. Even with Emily being at preschool for three hours, I still had plenty of time with her. When she wakes up from her nap, we're going to have popsicles outside.

Gotta go. Caleb is whining that he is finished playing on his own...