Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Letter Month 17

Dear Sarah Graves,
Seventeen months old and what a fun girl you are becoming!  You have lots of personality and a budding sense of humor.  You are really starting to talk!  In fact, I counted the other day and you can say about 20 words.  Some of them surprise me like when you say, "shirt".  Some of them absolutely delight me like when you run to your toys and exclaim, "pay!"
You have grown very fond of babies.  You love your friend Mia and call her a baby (she is 7 months younger and that's like light years when you're only 1).  You also love your dolls and call them babies, too.  You bring your babies over to me to hold and cuddle.  Sometimes you bring them a shirt or try to use a spoon or a cup to feed them.  As rambunctious as you are at times, you can also be very sweet.
Speaking of sweet, sometimes you spontaneously lean over and give me or your Dad a kiss.  The big, open-mouthed baby kind of kisses that are so sweet and genuine.  You also reach out and give head butts.  Head butts don't sound much like a sweet girl thing to do, but you do it so gently and with so much intent. 
As much fun as you are, you have been more unhappy lately than usual.  I think it's just your age and some of the frustration that you feel.  You go from being happy and laughing to crying and flailing your arms and back to happy in a matter of seconds.  I'm hoping that you will be able to express your wants and understand more and that will help you feel more at ease.
Changing your diaper makes you so angry and there doesn't seem to be much that makes it better.  You are starting to recognize when you have a poughkeepsie diaper.  Have I ever told you that we refer to your poop diapers as having poughkeepsie?  Pops started it when you were very small and we have been calling it that ever since.  Anyway, I think you realizing when you have poughkeepsie is one of the first steps to you being ready to potty train.  We aren't in any rush for that, but I won't miss your crying and thrashing around while being changed.
You continue to be picky about what you eat and lately how you eat it.  You desperately want to feed yourself and it is frustrating to you.  You love bananas, but now you want to hold the banana in the peel to eat it.  Lovie and I spend a lot of time trying to think of healthy foods to feed you.  Our strategy of feeding you pureed veggies for breakfast, oatmeal and fruit for lunch, and cheese, fruit, bread, and a little meat for dinner seems to be working.  I don't know what I would do without Lovie to come up with ideas to help us through these phases of yours!  I worry that you won't eat any vegetables and most fruits in their whole form, but hopefully you will outgrow it.
The best part of my day is coming in the back door and hearing you running so hard yelling, "BaBa!"  It is truly a delight to see those arms open wide as you barrel into me.  It almost makes going to work worth it just to have you that joyful to be with me again.  I hope you one day understand just how much you are loved.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Baby Shot!

Here is our baby shot from last week.  I misplaced the camera with the picture and am just now getting it up!

Lazy Sunday

Sunday we went to church and out for breakfast. SG did not fuss at all when I left her in the nursery. Maybe it is because they offer her goldfish snacks? We don't have those around the house, so that's pretty exciting.
We spent a good portion of the day getting things done around the house like laundry and baby food making. We also took some time to play with a sweet baby. Our air conditioner on the main floor wasn't working, so I let her stay cool and play in just her diaper.

First she brought me Angel, one of my dolls when I was little, then she brought me a book. I took the hint that she wanted me to read to her baby. At least she understands the importance of starting young, ha!

Her paci is only for sleeping, but lately she pops it in any time she can get one. She wasn't too happy with me when I made her put it back in her bed. I have flashes of how she will feel when I tell her she can't go out on a school night!

She loves these lift-the-flap books!

She just doesn't enjoy strawberries whole. Actually, she prefers most fruits purred rather than whole.

Feeling much happier with a cracker.

It felt too warm to cook, so Aaron and I enjoyed crackers and cheese with a cool white wine for dinner.

Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Good Helper

My sister moved into her townhouse over the weekend and we all got together to help. Aaron and Dad moved all the furniture and I occasionally gave them a hand with the big unruly things like a mattress and a chest of drawers. SG decided that she would help out by grabbing the broom!

Even one Year olds get put to work around here!
It was a long day, but we had a good time together. We even had the fun of hanging out with my grandmothers. SG delighted them when she said maw maw and GG. I didn't take any pictures with them on Saturday (lost my mind?), but they will be with us for the next week, so we might get another chance.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, June 24, 2011

Teething, Playing, Hanging Out

Sarah Graves has not been her happiest self lately.  For a while I thought it was because she was cutting the two upper cuspids or eye teeth.  She was uncomfortable, at times she ran a very low fever, and she had a runny nose.  Those teeth have been peeking through for a week or so and she still seems grumpy.  .
When we attended our parenting class one of the books that she suggested was Your One-Year-Old, The Fun Loving and Fussy 12 - 24 Month Old, so I ordered it and started reading it right away.  I was a little dismayed when the book described how your baby would be at their most balanced around the time of their birthday and that from 15 - 21 months they would be in a state of disequilibrium.  The book explains that their abilities become out of sync as they move closer to the mid-year mark and gradually they begin to sync up again as they move closer to their second birthday.  In other words, she becomes frustrated that she isn't able to do the things that she really wants to be able to do.  I think right now that has to do with communicating her wants and needs.  She has basic communication and I think that helps a lot, but sometimes she wants something and she gets frustrated as I pick up every object in sight trying to determine which thing she wants.  The psychologist in me thinks that there may be some dissonance between what people around her think she is capable of and what her maturity will allow for her to do.  She can walk and talk some, so the expectations increase and she just isn't able to function like an older child the way that people around her start to expect her to do.  This book does warn that you can't see your walking and talking toddler as a child because they aren't capable of thinking and behaving like a child and have to be treated like a baby still.  That makes sense to me. 
The book also mentioned that the best way to deal with their frustration is to distract them and that going outside would be a good way to distract a baby this age.  They are very right because going 'side as she says it is always exciting.  She can be crying about having her diaper changed and if I mention that after that we are going outside, she becomes much more willing to lay there and let me get it done. She will also repeat "side" to me over and over as if she is reminding me that we had a deal. 
So that's pretty much the state of affairs around here.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Father's Day

We had a fairly laid back Father's Day.  We went out for a big breakfast with Dustin and Lorna.  SG gave Uncle Dusty a big hug before he left and she was so sweet to blow him kisses. 
Then, we hung out for the rest of the day and put together a few things for dinner with my family.  Sarah Graves gave Pops and Daddy kisses and hugs. 

She was also interested in feeding Elmo with a spoon.

Then, there were hugs for Elmo. 

She was climbing on the table trying to get to these yummy cookies all day!  She was so excited when she finally got one after dinner!  My little buddy likes to bake cookies and eat them!  (She gets that from me :) )

She was so sweet and wanted to be with her Daddy all day.  I don't think he minded a bit!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Dog Beach Birthday Party!

Now do you see why cookies shaped like a dog bone were a must have?  The theme of the party was dog beach!  My colleague, David's, little boy Boyd turned three this weekend and SG was invited to his party.  The other kids may have been a little older, but she was undaunted!  SG didn't hesitate to climb on this large, inflatable dog!

They turned their backyard into a toddler dream complete with multiple baby pools, a beach made of 1600 pounds of sand, and their big pool.  The beach was Sarah Graves' favorite part and she spent most of her time there happily digging and shoveling sand. 

There were shark hats for the little kids and doggie hats for the bigger kids.  I couldn't believe she wore hers for a while.  Now she is ready for a Jimmy Buffett concert!

SG and the Birthday boy, sort of together.

She had a great time at the party!  She was sandy and tired when we left and took a little nap in the car. 

Busy Weekend

We had a jam packed weekend!  Thursday night, SG and I started preparing for our weekend by making sugar cookies cut out in the shape of dog bones.  These cookies were requested for a co-worker's son's 3rd birthday party and I think they came out so cute!  SG was with me the whole time we mixed up the cookies because she wanted to be right on my hip.  Now she knows how to measure flour, crack an egg, and the joy that is all things containing sugar. 
In case you haven't made them before, cut out sugar cookies take some time.  So, I did the icing on Friday night.  The party was Saturday and the icing needed time to dry. 
I got the idea for these designs after looking at The Pioneer Woman's site.  I was pretty excited with how they turned out and it was surprisingly easy and fun.

Just after I finished the cookies, Aaron's good friend, Dustin, and his wife, Lorna arrived.  They stayed with us while they attended her cousin's wedding.  We stayed up late visiting and managed to grab some breakfast with them Saturday morning.  Sarah Graves was taken with Uncle
Dusty and showed him all her toys on Saturday morning!  We didn't think to pull out our camera at all, which is a bummer. 

Friday, June 17, 2011

When You're With Aunt Nay

Sarah Graves is very interested in feeding herself.  I let her do it some.  I don't like a lot of mess and I definitely don't like food going everywhere, so I limit what she feeds herself and I "help" her with a lot of it.  Aunt Nay on the other hand is much more willing to let her "experience" things.  This has good points, so I'm glad that someone doesn't mind all the mess that it can make!  She was certainly having a good time. 

Sorry that the picture insists on being in landscape, I have rotated it and it is saved that way, but blogger insists that landscape is the way to show it.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

New Diapers

I heard about these diapers through someone on facebook and I was anxious to try.  The maker of these diapers is in China, but I was intrigued by the cute patterns!  So, I ordered some for us.  
I did a little research on them before ordering and the biggest complaint was that they are a bit smaller than some other brands.  I agree that they are smaller than my Smartipants.  I notice it most in the length of the diaper.  SG wears the Smartipants snapped down one in the rise and this one I put on her with the rise completely unsnapped.  The waist has plenty of room for her, but she doesn't have the chubby baby tummy that some toddlers have. 

Check out these cute patterns!  I realize they are a little difficult to completely see.  The one on the top left is a Hello Kitty pattern, next to it is the outline of Mickey Mouse's head on hot pink, then there is a dark brown background with bright flowers, yellow with white polka-dots, yellow background with 2 shades of bright pink flowers, and a blue and white stripe.  I was so excited about these patterns and think they look so cute on her!
We just got them, so she has only worn them a couple of times, but so far, they seem to work fine.  I haven't tested just how absorbent they are and I don't plan to use them as an overnight diaper, but for daytime they are super-cute!
I recently read a blog post from the owner of Cotton Babies where I buy our Bum Genius diapers and she was responding to a question about why their diapers cost so much more than these.  She pointed out that diapers made outside the U.S. do not create jobs for Americans, they can be made cheaper because the treatment of workers and pay standards are not the same, and her main argument is that the diapers are not as well made and will not hold their value.  I do like the idea of buying things that were made in the U.S., so that people here have jobs.  I sort of see what she is saying about how well made the diapers are because I'm not sure that the microfiber on the inside of these diapers is as soft and smooth as our others (it's still soft, just maybe not suede feeling soft).  I am not concerned about my diapers holding their resale value because we use them all the time, they are meant to hold pee and poop, and I don't expect them to be pristine after 2+ years of wear.  I try to take care of them, but I don't agonize about it.  So for now, we are enjoying our new fun patterns! 


Aaron picked these from our little backyard garden!  We had one a week ago and then we had two more!  I wasn't sure if we would get anything out of the plants we planted, but this is exciting!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Baby Shot!

She is in constant motion with no time to sit and take a picture!  Lovie made her Elmo shirt and she loves it.  She actually likes to carry it and look at Elmo more than she wants to wear it!  Soon after we came inside she was upset that she couldn't see Elmo the right way, so we took the shirt off and she happily carried it around for the rest of the evening.  Ha!  She doesn't try to say Elmo, but she points to him and says baby!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Toddler Personality

This girl is a hoot!
She loves to "color", but recently started to bite off the end of the crayon.  See that blue around her mouth?  That's crayon that she ate and smeared.  She would show me her teeth, but they were a lovely shade of blue!

I was trying a dress on her before bed and let her hang out in her diaper before we put her pjs on.  She found her boots and she loves to wear them!  She brings them over to me to help her put them on and she is such a nut, she played and danced around in them.

Here's a video of her hanging out in her boots.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Dinner with Family

After the wedding, we went back to our hotel and we all took a rest.  SG and Daddy took a nap and Momma used the time to play on the iPad.  That night we met up with family for dinner and time to catch up. 
I love all of these ladies in this picture with all of my heart!

SG was quite the performer and enjoyed giggles with Aunt Linda.

She really took to Maw Maw Yvonne and reached out for her to hold her.

Uncle Steve, my Dad, Uncle Tim, and my cousin Nick

SG really enjoyed seeing two of her cousins, Abby and Emily.  Emily is 6 months older and Abby is 2 years older. 

The girls gathered around the iPad to watch Baby First TV during dinner.  This programming is designed for little kids and is developmentally appropriate for them.  SG just loves it!  Emily was pretty enthralled too.  It worked out perfect because 3 hours at a restaraunt is hard for a one year old, but some entertainment on the iPad did just the trick to keep her happy.

Uncle Steve played with SG some and she showed him how she knows what the Native American says.  Ha!

We wish that we could have visited with everyone and I always wish that I took more pictures, but we had a good time just the same.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Baby Shot!

Ignore the crumbs from Kamut puffs and check out those sweet, blue eyes.

Aunt Lexie's Wedding!

My friend and Sarah Graves' godmother, Alexis married Tim this past weekend.  It just so happens that Tim is the priest who baptized Sarah Graves.  We couldn't be happier for the two of them and we wouldn't have missed celebrating their happy occasion! 
Friday night we attended a rehearsal dinner for them and it was so much fun to catch up with some of my best friends from high school.  As it turns out, Jen and Melissa keep up with me by following the blog.  Hi guys!
At the rehearsal dinner, Sarah Graves adopted the groom's family as her own.  She just fell in love with some of the nieces and every time I looked up, she was joining their group and performing for them!  At least she doesn't have a lot of stranger anxiety!

The wedding was Saturday morning at Trinity with a reception at Alexis' Mom's house.  The wedding was at Trinity where Aaron and I were married and SG was baptized.  Alexis and I grew up going to that church, so I guess it is fitting that many special events happen there. It has been a few years since I went to her childhood home and it brings back many fun memories of sleepovers and being a teenager. 
The ceremony was a full eucharist so we knew that Sarah Graves couldn't sit still that long.  Tim arranged to have the church nursery open for us and my Maw Maw Yvonne and cousin Ryan came to look after Sarah Graves.  It worked out perfectly because she had a good time playing with Ryan and we enjoyed the ceremony without fear of having the shrieking toddler.  The ceremony was beautiful, so I'm glad that nothing disrupted it.

Some of my favorite teachers from high school were there and I was so happy to see them and introduce my sweet girl to them.  We snapped a picture with Ms. Oulton, my English teacher. 

The temperatures were quite warm, but we found a delightfully shady spot outside under one of the deep side porches. 
These are some of my good friends from Episcopal: Melissa, Jeremy, Alexis, Sherene, and Jen.  It's hard to believe that I have been knowing them more than half my life.  Boy, that makes me feel old!

Sarah Graves was in rare form climbing all over the place.

She just looked so precious all dressed up with the beautiful landscape around her!

She and Pops were checking out the leaves.

I am so happy for Alexis and Tim and hope that we have a chance to see them again soon.  Sarah Graves didn't have a godfather and we joke that her godmother went out and found one for her!