Sunday, September 29, 2013

Grayson's 11 Month Update

This handsome man is almost a year old!! Yikes. But this momma is doing alright - I haven't started crying about it at all. :) But when he starts walking . . . :) LOOK OUT! He's such a little sweetie. I mean look at that grin! TOO CUTE!!

The big news this month was that Gray got his first haircut. He did really well! Now we will see how he does next time when he has to sit in a "big boy chair" and doesn't have a TV to watch or a car to sit in. :) Also this month was Grayson's first apple-picking trip, and his first wedding.

Gray officially gave up the bottle this month. He actually probably would have done it sooner, but I was not in a hurry to buy him more cups! :) He drinks from a straw cup almost all the time, but at least once per day I have him practice with a soft nipple cup. He continues to eat really well. Mostly he will eat anything, although lately he's decided he's picky about veggies. He loves any kind of soft fruit: pears, peaches, boiled apples, mandarin oranges, etc. He's an excellent eater!

He's started to talk lately! He tries to copy what I say - his favorite thing is to try and repeat when I say "no no" or "all done". He can clearly say "ma ma", and tries to say "na na" for Nora's name. With Cory sometimes he will say "da da" or "dee dee". He's speaking really well for his age!

He's not walking yet, but he's pulling up on everything, and can stand independently for a little bit. He's taken a few "half-steps" here and there, and just tonight he walked for a bit with me while I only held one of his hands. He doesn't really like to walk though! - He's such a quick crawler that walking isn't important to him at the moment. So who knows when he will just go ahead and do it - so far he's done EVERYTHING exactly on par with his sister, and she walked right at 12 months. So we'll see! He's also dancing a little bit when he hears a song by bobbing his head up and down. It's TOO cute. :)

He continues to be obsessed with wheels! And it really doesn't matter where or what they are on - trains, cars, trucks, tractors, strollers, bikes, roller skates, rolling carts, hospital beds - you name it! If he can move it on wheels, he likes it. He likes to play outside and push around his four-wheeler while walking behind it, or try to get his sister's scooter wheels. Inside he pushes cars around the living room or up and down the hallway. Can you guess what his first birthday theme will be? :)

Behavior-wise, he's very calm. He entertains himself, and is very good. He's also very stubborn! This month he started to like books, and he LOVES to read his book "What Does Baby Feel?" over and over again. He just smiles and smiles through the whole book!! We have also been trying to teach him the word "NO", and some days he's good about listening, but other days - WHEW! He constantly tries to get into our mudroom, turn the volume up and down on our sound system, get into the dishwasher, or get into the tub/shower with Nora or I. He's definitely determined!

That's about it, I think! Gray continues to grow, and I continue to both love it and lament it! ;) He's such a blessing in my life, and I love him so much! Until next time . . .

Nora's 4 Year Update!

Nora is FOUR! And what a blessing she is. How can you not love her?? She really is a beautiful person inside and out. Plus, she's at a really FUN age. She consistently says and does things that are just SO creative and funny. For example, while eating her fourth birthday dinner at IHOP, she proceeded to announce (loudly): "I had a REALLY HOT toot!" Yep, she's definitely four!! She also loves to tell us stories and about her "dreams": "Long long faraway a teacup was in a rocket that blastoff to the moon . . ."

Nora spends a lot of her time nowadays playing with her best friend Lily, playing outside with me and Gray, riding her "big girl bike" (with training wheels and a helmet), and watching her favorite show "Octonauts" (which is about deep sea explorers) and "Doc McStuffins" (which is about a doctor of toys). She loves the sea and marine life in general, such as whales and dolphins. She loves to help people as well, and "diagnose" all her patients like Doc does. As a matter of fact, recently she diagnosed me with "rip-sip-itis" - from "drinking too much tea and coffee". ;) She also continues to be an excellent big sister. Her brother LOVES HER!! And he's lucky to have her taking such good care of him. ;)

Nora got to play soccer on a team for the first time this past summer. She played for the Happy Feet Soccer League and was on the orange team - the Cheetahs! Nora was not the biggest fan of soccer, but she made it through the season without a meltdown. She also learned a lot about playing on a team. She scored lots of goals, and enjoyed her popsicle after each game. It was fun overall, but I don't see Nora playing an organized sport again anytime too soon! We are trying dance class right now, so we'll see how that goes. :)

Nora has been getting really good at reading and writing. Over the summer she learned a lot of sight words, and that really helped her improve her confidence as a reader. She's at the phase now where she's consistently asking me how to spell different words, and writing her own words as well. She's also to the point where she can do a wide range of art projects independently, which is AWESOME! She has come up with a lot of neat creations, and her drawings are so advanced for a child of her age. I was completely surprised recently when I noticed she was drawing a picture of Mickey Mouse - that looked just like Mickey Mouse! It was probably better than I could have done. ;) She also LOVES STICKERS. I estimate that she used 1500 stickers this summer in her art projects, give or take 500. NO JOKE. The girl is sticker-happy all the time.

Nora gave up her nap this year as well. Right before she turned four we made the decision to send her to afternoon preschool. The first month of that was pretty difficult, but she is getting much better recently. Her day begins with breakfast and a little TV, then she plays independently with her special "bin toys" while Grayson naps. When he wakes up we all play together and read books, and then we have lunch. Nora heads off to school, and Gray and I come home to play before his nap. Cory picks Nora up from school, and we all have snack and play outside or downstairs. Then a little more TV time while Mommy makes dinner, and then we eat and play outside or downstairs some more. Then a shower, one final show, a story, and bedtime.

Also, Nora got a "big girl room" for her fourth birthday, complete with a "big girl bed". There was one catch: NO baby Blanky in the big girl bed! (Side note: Nora's Blanky is personified because that is how Nora feels about her. Yes, HER! Of course, Blanky is a girl . . . ) Nora had been forgetting to go to bed with Blanky, so I didn't think this would be an issue. It wasn't at first, but lately Nora is starting to "miss her Blanky". I am not sure if she will ever fully "give it up" but she no longer sleeps with it every night - although it does have it's own special drawer right by her bed! :)

Nora recently requested to wear a "one-jamma" to bed. (Definition: a pair of pajamas that is not a shirt and a top, but one piece, like a long shirt or dress.) She also has her own style that I LOVE because it's really entirely her own. She loves to dress up for no reason other than it's a fun thing to do, and wear what she wants because it's comfortable or pretty or "her favorite". She's truly awesome! :)

That's about it for the "big stuff" I think. Really, if I could bottle her up at this age and keep her forever, I might do it. :) LOVE MY LITTLE NORA!!

Until next time . . .