Friday, December 2, 2011

13 and a bit months

Dear Nat Nat,
This month, your monthiversary fell the day before your dad and I ran a half-marathon. Can you believe it?? 26.2 miles in your honor. You're a lucky pup.

We had a great time in our beloved Philadelphia for the occasion. You absolutely loved seeing our friends with whom we stayed and totally bonded with their kids. You also had a blast hanging out with BOTH sets of grandparents, who came in for the occasion. You were in heaven!

Thanksgiving also fell a few days later, and you again got to spend the occasion with both sets of grandparents. You evidently have a thing for your grandpas, because you would just cling to them like none other. Especially since you don't get to see them very often, we were happy to see you immediately bond with your paternal grandpa - you seriously loved going "flying," eating together, and reading books together. That didn't cause you to lose any love for Ajja (maternal grandpa), though - you had a blast playing hide and seek with him and you both could not get enough giggles in.

You've gotten to experiment with a few fun new foods this month. Last month, at your birthday, party, you got your own delicious little cake. You were a little overwhelmed by everyone watching you, though, as they would gasp every time you tried to make a move toward it. So you hardly touched it there, and just nervously looked around at everyone until we picked you up. It was quite funny and sad all at the same time. But I gave you your cake again a few days later and you absolutely devoured it. You could not seem to get over how fun it was to stick your hands in it and just stroke the little owl. You thought it was so funny, and were mesmerized by all the chocolate on your fingers and in your mouth. You continue to harbor a special affinity for Thai and Indian food (especially mango lassis, no surprise).

This month, you've really loved going down the slide. You absolutely adore climbing the stairs up (not really sure when you figured that out, as we don't have stairs in our place), turning yourself around, and going down feet-first on your stomach. Such a big boy! Your expression at the bottom of the slide just melts my heart.

We had a really fun Halloween. You had a blast trick-or-treating with some little friends. The first time someone held out a basket to you to choose a candy, you sort of reached tentatively, and then stopped and looked up at them, like, "Um, really? Can I actually grab something?" After that, though, you totally could not get enough of it. You also always seemed to manage to choose the good candies - chocolate. Smart boy!

You continue to love to use your hands this month. While you have been clapping and giving high fives for quite some time now, you've recently rediscovered how fun it is. You received a cute little stacking ring set for your birthday, and you LOVE putting the rings back on the stick, and get so pleased and start clapping for yourself each time you get one on. It is SO adorable. You also continue to be best friends with your little stuffed doggies - you seriously love those little guys. You also love using your cute little hands to pull wash out of the washing machine and handing it to me to put in the dryer. We both love the teamwork!

You still have pretty much zero interest in walking. Seriously, pup - you've been cruising for close to 5 months now, and can easily stand on your own when you're not paying attention, but have not even attempted to take one single step. Really, it would just be nice for when we go outside so you don't scrape your knees on the concrete. Let's work on it, k?

Your vocabulary, on the other hand, has increased quite a bit this month. You say probably close to 10 words now, although it's sometimes confusing discerning exactly what you mean you use the same sound for multiple things. Do you mean dad or dog or that when you say "da"? Still, you're beginning to increase your clarity and add new sounds to your babbling repertoire. You've also gotten quite skilled at following simple directions, such as going and getting something and bringing it to me, which will be helpful when I want a snack.

Your personality continues to be so so fun and sweet and happy. I adore your constant giggles and chatter. Our friendship has really developed this month, and I love sharing interests and hobbies with you.

Last week was almost magical in getting to spend so much time with family. I could see you just light up with all of them around, and it was so fun to see you bond with each of them. One day, we all went to the temple together, and I can't really describe the feeling I had with all of us being there together. I can't wait for the day that you can be in there with us, too, knowing that we'll be together forever.

love,
mama

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Stopped Dead in My Tracks

Did you fleece-lined leggings exist?

I'm...blown away. This changes everything.

(ETA: They're sold out! SOB!)

Monday, November 7, 2011

New Style Blog!

I started one.  A week's worth of outfits are up, and then I won't bore all of who really just care about chubby baby cheeks with style pictures.  Check it out over here!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Halloween

If this isn't the cutest baby cow you've ever seen, well, then I might be a little concerned that you have no heart.




(Gah! The tail!)


(Cow friends at the church Halloween party.)

(Farmers. They supply the produce, we supply the milk. Bartering is good.)

Monday, October 24, 2011

GF

Girlfriend, that is, not gluten-free.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

1 Year

Dear tiniest,
Oh boy oh boy, where has the year gone, sweet one? How is it possible that you are one whole year old? How is it possible that you've been here for that long, and how is it possible that it hasn't been longer? This year has been a weird dichotomy of feeling like we've never lived without you and being astonished that the short time we've had you has gone by so fast.


This month, you've become especially committed (clingy) in your relationships. You've become very attached to certain people in your life - your dad and me, of course, are number one (thankyouverymuch). You still light up when your dad comes home from work, and follow him around like a little shadow for the rest of the night. You also had lots of fun with your Aunt Priya before she moved to Spain, at which point you missed her terribly and got super excited when you saw her on the computer screen.


You've always been close with my mom and with your dad's parents (via Skype), but the surprise best friend has been my dad, your ajja. Suffice it to say, you are mildly obsessed with him. Any time we are around him, you flat-out refuse to have anyone else even hold you (including ME!). You will cheerfully skip naps and playing and investigating all the things just to be with him. The other day, he spent the day at our place, and you were on cloud nine until he finally had to leave and had to hand you back to us, at which point you burst into very very sad tears. I've never seen you do that with anyone before. The best part of it all is that he is equally obsessed with you and literally lights up with joy any time he sees you or even hears your name. It makes me happier than I can say to see your little friendship growing.

Your communication skills have gotten quite proficient and specific this month. You now not only indicate that you want to eat, but point out specific foods that you want (alternating gestures toward salad and yogurt or by pointing to the yellow box of Cheerios on the counter). You regularly say "da" and "ma," and I've been trying to teach you a few other words - such as "more" and "ball." You obviously recognize others (notably, "airplane"), and follow easy directions (such as getting and bringing over a book, or putting food in your mouth).

Your appetite continues to astonish us. You eat so. much. food. You easily down a whole avocado in one sitting, or a huge piece of pizza. You adore cheese and apples and curry and beans and mango lassi, and rarely refuse food, except for perhaps pecan nut thins, which is probably for the best since we realized you're allergic to them. You had a pecan cracker recently, after which you developed a rash all over your face. Quite scary on our end. You didn't swell at all, though, nor did you have trouble breathing, thank goodness. Since you didn't have those symptoms, we didn't give you any medicine, and the hives went away within the hour. I'm really hoping you'll outgrow this allergy since neither your Dad nor I have any allergies, and you're not allergic to peanuts and mostly because pecans are rather delicious and I'd hate for you to have to miss out on them. You also had a brief (although it didn't feel so at the time) biting-while-nursing spell this month. Holy moly. That was a rough few days.

You continue to have a profound interest in household items, especially CUPS. Any time you see a cup, you frantically leap across the room until you can grab it and drink from it (if by drink you mean spill all over yourself, which I do). You also adore the washing machine, both watching it run and reaching into it when it's off. You've also started to take an interest in climbing - both onto the couch/bed, as well as the bookshelf. You've gotten pretty good at backing off, although sometimes you'll still start to pitch yourself headfirst to get to some interesting thing on the ground.

You got to go on your first bike ride this month. We got you a little tiny bike helmet, that you loathed while your dad put it on, but found to be the funniest thing ever once it was secured. You couldn't stop giggling at the heaviness on your head and the image in the mirror. Other interests continue to include books - you love reading them with us and paging through them on your own, carefully separating pages to make sure you don't miss any important plot developments.

Your love for animals has expanded to include cats this month, when you met your first one. You were seriously obsessed with this poor animal, and kept grabbing her fur and patting her face and whiskers. It's a wonder she didn't attack you back. You spent a solid 30 minutes either playing with her or staring at her on the chair and trying to lure her back. You were beside yourself with her movements and softness and grabbableness.

My little son, how much you have changed and learned and grown this year. Of course it's amazing to me how much you've changed and developed, and how you've developed into a smart and sweet and handsome little boy. What is more remarkable to me, though, is how much you've stayed the same. Your personality has been so consistent. From the beginning, you've been so smiley and vibrant. Your preferences are strong, and you are an excellent communicator (interestingly, as your baby blessing said). You have a way of lighting up others' lives, most especially mine.

It took a long time for me to be honest enough with myself to admit that it took me a few days to feel that fiery maternal attachment everyone hails. While I knew I loved you, for a few days, I felt a little lost and not like myself. I didn't know if I would be trapped or overburdened or incompetent. But then. Then 12 months happened, and I find myself filled with a love and protective desire more overpowering than I ever thought possible. I find myself thinking of you for more seconds than exist in a day, and smiling at the thought of it all. Your dad and I often laugh at the percentage of our time spent while you are sleeping or otherwise not with us that we talk about/look at pictures of/remember stories of you, and then continue doing it because we just cannot get enough. That maternal love that everyone talks about? Well, let's just say that it pales in comparison to what I feel for you.

You have, on occasion, stopped to look at the rings I wear on my left hand, the rings your dad gave me. They sparkle and they are pretty, but to me they are more than jewelry. They are symbols that your dad and I are together for eternity. Now when I look at them, they still sparkle, and I still remember - but I remember not just him, but both of you, both of my boys. I remember that we, as a family, will be together forever. Now when I look at them, they don't just stand for two - they mean three.


Happy first birthday, my sweet son.

love,
mama

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Outfits Lately, Take 2




(Everything's cuter with these two.)







(With and without jacket, graciously lent by sister.)






Outfits Lately

Since the end of the 21DC, I've been trying to continue putting effort and thought into my outfits each day. I've been pretty good about documenting it, and by pretty good I mean I have dan take terribly lit photos right before I throw on a t-shirt and sports bra to go running. I'm fairly certain almost-sweaty underpinnings qualify as pretty good in my book, don't they in yours?
? (Houndstooth and lace - I've been meaning to try this.)


(Why yes, that would be a phenomenal and pretty briefcase that I thrifted for $10, not to rub it in, I'm sure you recently found a perfect and feminine briefcase purse, too.)


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Tied Up


I liked this outfit from the other day enough to have Dan take a the-baby's-in-bed-and-it's-too-dark-to-shoot-outside-so-I-guess-we'll-use-use-flash-inside photo. I aim to please.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Tiny Eats

Is there anything cuter than a baby eating? I think not.

video

He was practically frantic anytime I got up to cut another slice. A child after my own heart.

(And my gratingly saccharine voice? You're welcome.)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Recent Books

Do you go through phases? Yellow phases, productive phases, avocado-eating phases (if by phase I mean always)? Right now, I'm in a book-reading phases, or as much as I can be with an almost 1-year old and a job and training, which is actually really not that much at all, now that I think about it. But still. It's sadly way more than than I was reading earlier in the year, which is good enough for me.

Some recents:



I really really loved this book. It is some of the better fiction I've read in a while (which, judging by my previous comment, may not be saying all that much). The book is the journal of Sarah Prine, and chronicles her life starting when she's about 18 years old in the wild west. The love story (of course there is a love story - do you know me at all?) is so sweet, but not saccharine.

Sarah epitomizes everything I love in a heroine - she's smart but not snooty, tough but loving, strong but vulnerable, and oh so real. I loved some of her entries when she was about to get married to the love of her life because she goes back and forth between being completely smitten and confident in her love, and being annoyed and unsure. She's headstrong and that sometimes makes things slip off her tongue in ways they shouldn't, but that just endeared her to me all the more.

SPOILER!
For those of you who have read it, the only issue I had with this book was near the end. Although I sobbed like a baby through the last 20 pages, it was just a little too predictable and a little too easy. Jack's death just seemed too obvious and contrived to me, even though I felt like my heart was braking when it actually happened.

The one other issue was that it was SUPER slow for the first 100 pages or so (lots of bam bam, shoot 'em up sort of action that was not my cup of tea), so I had a tough time getting into it. But once I did, hoo boy, I could not stop.




The next was this biography of Gordon B. Hinckley, who was the prophet and president of the Mormon Church until a few years ago. I've always loved President Hinckley, and have always felt a special affinity towards him. After reading this book, it was all the more clear to me how he had a way that made everyone feel close to him. Dan and I read this together, and we were simultaneously amazed by his work ethic coupled with a focus on what is most important.

Much as I love President Hinckley, though, this wasn't my favorite so far as biographies go. While Sheri Dew is a great writer, I don't think she's the best storyteller. She did an excellent job of chronicling his life, but it felt fairly repetitive at times (yes, I understand that he did a ridiculous amount of travel and that he was very tired EVERY time but that he continued on despite his fatigue EVERY time. thank you.), while not providing nearly enough detail in others (it mentions that the Family Proclamation was announced while he was President, but how did it come about? what were President Hinckley's feelings on the 2nd official declaration and the months and years leading up to it?).

I read the biography of Spencer W. Kimball, another prophet, several years ago, and I thought it did a much better job of helping the reader understand the progression of his thoughts and feelings and relationships. Instead, this one felt more like a "journal" than a "diary" (Went to Asia. Called as apostle. Spent long hours at the office. Spoke at many many firesides.). While I got to know what he did, I didn't feel like I really got to know him all that much more than before.


Anyone have any really excellent books they've read lately and would like to recommend?