Friday, January 29, 2010

I would have posted this yesterday but I wanted to get his stats from his 6-month appointment today, first!

Dear Hunter,

You are six months old now, my baby boy. Hard to believe you've been with us for half of a year already! And yet, I feel like I've known you forever, that you've been a part of Mommy and Daddy, all of our lives.

We had your six month wellness visit today, little man! Everything went great. You are getting so big...you now weight 18 lbs (70th percentile) and you are 27 1/2 inches long (80th percentile). What a big strong boy you are becoming! You were also very brave for your shots today only crying a little bit and making Mommy look like a liar, after I told the nurse you would scream bloody murder. Ha! And you have moved up to Size 3 Diapers! SLooooow down that growing! We can hardly keep up!

This past month we've watched your independence grow as you explore your surroundings. It's normal to see you examining a toy and turning it every which way before mouthing it to "learn" some more about it. And you've discovered the Jumperoo this month! Mommy and Daddy borrowed one from a friend and for the first few times in it, you weren't sure. Then on the fourth time you bounced once. Twice. Three times. Then like a dog going crazy over a bone, you were flinging your body left and right and up and down and bouncing like a crazy baby! It was hilarious to watch! You have no idea the pure that Mommy and Daddy felt watching you, so insanely happy as you bounced.

You are so close to crawling...you have the stance down pat and you rock back and forth on all fours. You sometimes fling yourself forward impatiently (you have your Daddy's short amount of patience!). But more often than not, you slide backwards all over the room. And the rolling! You are like a happy, smiling, toothy ball that rolls and twists and turns all over the living room floor. You also enjoy standing. You will hold Mommy and Daddy's fingers and pull yourself (from laying on your back on the floor) to a complete standing position and smile in triumph! I know it's only a matter of time before you realize you can start pulling yourself up to a standing position on your own.

You eat so much more now, and enjoy it immensely (a boy after our own heart! ha!). Mommy has loosely adapted a version of something called Baby Led Weaning, when it comes to your eating. And now you are eating like a champ! You have tried (and loved) pancakes, bananas, waffles, green beans and toast. You've also tried (and didn't immediately love but are already getting used to) grown-up oatmeal and carrots. And today we will try watermelon!

Your hair is growing and you have the most adorable peach-fuzzy soft head. Mommy can't help it....every single day I kiss that peach fuzz, I inhale deeply the scent of my child. Run my fingers over each gentle wisp. Inhale that lovely baby smell.

You've entered into a bit of a clingy stage, Hunter. If you are crabby or just not feeling well, and Mommy leaves the room, you frantically search for me with your eyes and start whining and holding your arms out after me. It's no offense to whoever is in the room with you, whether it be your Nana or Grammie or sometimes even Daddy, you are just very much your Mama's boy!

Mommy went back to work this month, Hunter, and while it's been a good thing I also can't help but miss you terribly while I'm away from you. By the time Mommy is home from work it is your bedtime so after putting you to sleep, I find myself staring at you in the dark. Touching your smooth cheek. Telling you over and over how much I love you. I've only cried about three times this week (my second week) so, not terrible I guess! I know it will get "easier" but I will not miss you any less, little man. And then Mommy feels guilty becuz she knows that Daddy sees you even less I know I'm lucky! And Daddy knows he is lucky too. He rushes home from work each day to kiss your round cheek, cradle you like a football in his arms, and sing to you (usually Benny and the Jets...so we can someday tell you how your Pop-Pop used to sing it) before bed. He loves you with all his heart and soul.


I just can't seem to fully explain how all encompassing your parents love is for you. I know that when I simply stare at you, my eyes often fill with thankful, unbelieving, and oh-so-happy tears. I can't help it. Daddy and I both constantly tell you, out loud, how much we love you and appreciate you and can not imagine any part of our lives without you in it.


Thank you for being our son, Hunter!


Love you Always and Forever,


Mommy and Daddy

P.S. This is one of the reasons we love you so much...you are SO silly! Mommy was pretending to spit on you (you love that noise for some reason, don't ask) and you giggled your little heart out. When Mommy emailed this video to your G-Pa, who was on a work trip, he said he laughed so hard in his room that he was positive the whole hotel heard him!





Sunday, January 24, 2010

Why can't they make one of these for adults?

Just think how nice the world would be if we could all look and feel this deliriously happy!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Good news.

I got a job!!

For the past two months or so, I've been looking for a part time job. And the going's been rough. Did I ever mention how much I hate job-hunting?

Anyway, today was my second interview and it went great! And it's really going to be the best of both worlds. It's a part time job, 1:30-6:30PM so not only will I still get to be home half the day with my baby boy, but I'll be making some MUCH needed money the second half of the day! And other perks of my part time hours is that my Mom will be babysitting for her grandson until Big D gets home from work (he'll get home usually before me).

AND...I will have Fridays off! Woo hoo!

I'm feeling so many emotions right now and I"m surprised by some of them. I'm actually feeling kinda...excited...to have a job again. Don't get me wrong, the past six months have been the best, being able to bond and watch Hunter thrive right before my very eyes. But at the same time, it will be nice to have some adult conversation during the day too, that doesn't revolve solely around wiping hineys and making bottles!

And the best of all? I was only gone an hour and a half today at my second interview but when I walked through that front door and Hunter saw one glimpse of my face, his beautiful smile completely lit up the room. Seriously, not to wax poetic but my heart swelled with uncontrollable love!

If I get to come home to that sweet and happy face, it makes it all worthwhile!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Last night I was watching The Ghost Whisperer on TV, while Big D was on the laptop. He would look up every now and then but wasn't fully paying attention to the show.

It was an episode about a guy who passed away and neither him nor his fiance were allowing the other to move on. He continued to "haunt" her for a year, by flickering lights, brushing his hand against her cheek so she'd feel cold, to let her know he was still with her. Eventually he let her know she could love again and he moved on.

I jokingly asked Daryl, "If God Forbid you died before me, would you haunt me?"

"Yeah," He replied casually and shrugged. "For a while."

"For a while?" I asked mock-indignantly and laughed.

It was quiet for a couple of seconds before he spoke again.

"I would never leave Hunter's side though. I'd hold him in my arms for the rest of his life and he'd never even know it."

After the teasing we'd just been doing, this totally nonchalant, serious, yet heartfelt statement by Big D took my breath away. I immediately felt my eyes tear up and quickly brushed it away with the back of my hand so he wouldn't see, and just smiled in response.

We sat quietly for a couple of seconds before Daryl looked back up at me. Again, totally serious.

"Oh yeah. And don't worry, I'd haunt the f*ck out of you."

Heh. That's my man.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Whew.


Parenthood is sometimes (okay, most of the time) exhausting.


I'm having with Hunter what I like to call the "Nap Wars".


Currently the score is Baby: 3, Mommy: 0.


And Mommy is losing it!!


It started a couple of weeks ago with Nap Problem #1!


It got to the point where Hunter had to literally be rocked to sleep for every single nap, otherwise he would not go to sleep in his crib (up until that point, I was able to rock him till he was groggy and lay him down that way, and he would go off to sleep on his own with his Mommy Bear (sounds of heartbeat) and his Rainforest Soother playing).


Mommy is getting tired of this becuz seeing as how Hunter only TAKES usually a 25 minute nap (the longest is 45 minutes but those are few and far between), I end up spending 15-20 minutes rocking and soothing him to sleep, and then by the time I start to do laundry or do the dishes or just RELAX he is waking up again! Argh! And yet I know he can nap for longer than that becuz in someones arms, he will sleep for a freakin' hour and a half! So that's my complaint, he won't soothe himself to sleep (I have to rock him till he's out) and then he only sleeps in his crib for like 25-ish minutes


And now the newest, Nap Problem #2, that started about 3 days ago?


Hunter WILL NOT NAP!!!! I rock him to "sleep" (I'm sure he's not fully out) and then gently lay him in his crib like always with his bear and soother on. Not even 10 or 12 minutes later, he is awake crying and whining his little heart out. So within the past day or so, after rereading the Baby Whisperer which says not to let him cry it out, I go in and put his paci back in his mouth and pat his back/belly or rub his head and "shhh-shhh-shhh" to try to soothe him back to sleep.


It doesn't freakin' work. He just cries and whines and screams and whines until I get so frustrated I take him back out. And then we end up with a cranky, tired baby who needs a nap but refuses to take one.


A little more background here. Hunter sleeps GREAT at night time. He goes to bed around seven p.m. and occasionally fusses a bit or "talks" but otherwise is able to soothe himself to sleep. We have a nap/bedtime routine that we follow: Diaper change, swaddle him up with one arm loose, pop in his paci, rock and soothe him and either talk/sing quietly a little bit after turning on his Bear and Soother, and then gently lay him in crib once he is asleep (or at bedtime, groggy). Then he sleeps through the night like a champ until approximately 6-7 a.m. the next morning.


I don't really know what else to do. Everyone keeps telling me to "stick with it" but stick with WHAT?? I feel like what I'm doing is not WORKING.


I'm frustrated and tired and exasperated.

Good thing he's so damn cute. I can't get mad at that face.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Dear Hunter,

Today, my sweet boy, you are five months old.
I'm so proud of the amazing little boy you are becoming that I feel like I'm often glowing.
Where to start?


You are getting so strong and sturdy. You love to stand up straight in your exersaucer, as well as standing up on our laps. The look on your face when you do it is hilarious, so excited at your accomplishment! You love to stand SO MUCH that we joke around that you will skip crawling and go right to walking. You also spend more time on your belly (belly time is NO LONGER a crying shame! ha!) and can lift your whole upper body up and off the ground. Mommy props you up quite often into a sitting position and you are slowly strengthening up your core muscles and working on balance. You can even sit up on your own for about 30 seconds before toppling over (don't worry...Mommy always catches you!). You flip over constantly (front-to-back, back-to-front) and it's a typical night for you to roll to your belly quite a few times in your crib. Mommy will often roll you immediately back onto your back, and sometimes you'll even roll back yourself in your sleep. And you've really gotten into rolling around the living room. I now know that you will never remain in the spot I lay you on! You are quite a dare-devil and are constantly arching your self back in our arms when we hold you, so that your head is in an almost-up side down position. And you still love when we do "Super-Baby" with you...holding you up high in the air in the super-man position.

You absolutely LOVE eating solids and have completely mastered eating off of a spoon and swallowing it down. You now reach for the bowl and spoon as I feed you, trying to grab them away from Mommy, but I don't think you've quite grasped the concept that you can feed yourself yet...when I dipped your fingers into the bowl the other day you just smiled and smeared it on your high chair tray. Your absolute favorite foods currently are sweet potatoes (you cry if I take too long to get the spoon back into your mouth) and peaches, however you will eagerly eat everything I've introduced to you so far (rice cereal, oatmeal, peas, carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, apple sauce, pears, peaches, bananas). You don't discriminate between store-bought baby food or when Mommy makes it homemade, pureeing in her food processor. And you had your first "big people" food on Christmas day! Mommy let you eat a little bit of her mashed potatoes off your baby spoon and you LOVED it.

You can completely hold your own bottle now and you grab it right out of our hands if we try to hold it for you. Mommy is NOT ready for you to grow up too fast yet. You are still her little baby boy!


Your two bottom teeth have completely broken through the gums and are sprouting up so fast! Can you see them? You look so different to me, with teeth! You love to nibble on everything, t0ys, books, our fingers, but now with sharp teeth Mommy and Daddy aren't so keen on your finger-biting! Everyone keeps assuring me it will be a while before your top teeth come in, but I'm not so sure. You've started up again here and there with the red, flushed cheeks, and the warm head and random cranky moments. I think it will be sooner than anyone expects!

You are SO aware of everything around you now. Any little movement or sound, and you are immediately curiously inspecting. I can almost see the gears in your brain turning as you take it all in. Even the dog snorting in his sleep can quickly grab your attention! Speaking of the dog, Tucker, you are in love with that furball and no matter how cranky you may be, one quick lap of the dog around your exersaucer and you are grinning ear to ear and giggling. It melts Mommy and Daddy's hearts that you love your "doggie" so much! (and we call him "doggie" so much that now Tucker is responding to it!).

You KNOW and LOVE your parents so much that it is just plain amazing. If someone else is holding or talking to you, and you suddenly catch a glimpse of either me or Daddy, or hear one of our voices, you have instantly forgotten the person holding you and are smiling, giggling or staring intently after us. To think that we have this affect on you is just crazy and wonderful! If you are overwhelmed or upset for some reason, often all you need is a simple cuddle and reassuring whisper from Mommy or a neck-kiss and silly talk from Daddy.And it seems within the past two weeks or so you've now started reaching out to us with your extended arms, which often makes Mommy want to cry with happiness!


You are extremely ticklish on your neck, feet, and upper thighs so we shamelessly take advantage of that fact quite often just to hear your endless peals of laughter.

Some of your current favorite past times: Peek-a-Boo...no matter what, the cry of "Peek-a-boo!" always elicits a happy reaction. Handy Manny...as soon as the Tools start singing, your eyes are big and round and you are watching it. Mommy hopes you'll even pick up some Spanish from it (Hola, Manny!). Your piggy toes......now that you have found your feet, you NEVER want to let go of them! They are a constant source of fun and learning for you and I love to watch as you pull them up to your mouth.


You are starting to outgrow your swing so we don't use it that often anymore. You nap almost solely in your crib (and occasionally still in Mommy's welcome arms) and while you are a total cat-napper (from 15 minutes minimum to 40 minutes maximum) you DO take approximately 3 naps a day. Without at least two naps, you are a total bear so Mommy does her best to keep you to your napping routine.


You are still nursing but we're down to twice a day. You nurse first thing in the morning and last feeding at night, before bed, as it is when you are most calm and less fidgety. During the day, you take 2-3 bottles of formula. This works best for both you and Mommy as it was getting to be like a WWF wrestling match when we were nursing during the day. Not relaxing or productive for either you or Mommy. Now I look forward to our nursing sessions so much. I love to bring you into bed with me in the morning when you wake up (after Daddy does your first diaper change). We lay side by side and and Mommy listens to you "talk" and laugh and I smooch your cheeks and neck, then we follow it up with nursing while you stare up at me with your beautiful brown eyes and pinch the skin on my chest (ouch!). Perfect moments I wouldn't trade for the world.



Two new things for you this month, silly little man...tub-time and spitting! First of all, Mommy started bathing you in the regular bath tub (as opposed to your baby tub) and you now actually enjoy bath-time! You have a little reclining seat Mommy sits you in and you suck on the face cloth or try to grab and put your toes in your mouth while rubber duckies and turtles float all around you. Mommy also got you a bath tub you can sit up in but it's a little harder since you still don't sit up for long on your own.


And spitting? Daddy taught you that quite a while ago and you razzed here and there, but there was suddenly two days in a row where it just *clicked* where you did it every day, ALL DAY. Between the drooling from teething, and the spitting, you were soaking wet. Mommy now puts a bib on at you at certain points of the day!


You celebrated your very first Christmas this month and while you didn't know what was going on, Mommy and Daddy sure did and we tried to make it a very special holiday! We only bought you a couple of gifts (jumper that goes in the doorway, couple books, some toys that light up with sound and colors, a couple crinkly books and board books, and a photo album for you that you can mouth the pages of while looking at pics of your family) becuz we knew you'd be spoiled by your grandparents. And you were! Lots of clothes for the growing boy (you are now wearing 9-12 months in onesies, shirts, sleepers, one piece outfits and size 6-9 mo. or 9 months in pants) and even some fun educational toys. Your book collection is growing quite nicely!


Oh Hunter, we love you so much! Mommy was just thinking back to when you were first born, how it simultaneously feels so far away, and yet like just yesterday. And how much you have changed already in five months; that I just can't believe it! And I often get sad when I think that your Pop-Pop (my Daddy) is not here to see you and hug you and hold you and love you. And to laugh with me at how much your baby face looked like Pop-Pop's when HE was a baby (I can't wait to show you pictures!). But then I realize that no matter what, he is here with you, little man, he is here with all of us and he is watching you grow. He is loving you as a grandfather but also looking out for you as your very own personal Guardian Angel. Don't ever forget that, baby boy, and know that even though he never met you in person, your Pop-Pop LOVES YOU. You are a little piece of him.

Hunter, you are the reason we get out of bed in the morning and thank God for making us so lucky and blessed. While Daddy and Mommy often find ourselves saying "I can't wait till Hunter can do _______" we then have to stop and remind you PLEASE DON'T GROW SO FAST! Take your time, little man, so we can enjoy your babyhood. It's been the best five months of our lives!


Love you always and forever,

Mommy and Daddy

Friday, January 01, 2010

I've been wanting to post about our Christmas but have not had the time to blog. And when I DO have some spare time (now, while the baby is asleep) I'm usually too tired and just not feeling hopping on the computer. And now here New Year's Eve has come and gone. And yet I still hadn't blogged.

My, how the time flies!
So I'm stealing the Captain's Wife's idea and giving your our Christmas in pictures. Hunter's 1st Christmas was so much fun and also very exhausting. And a tad overwhelming for my boy being passed around from arms to arms. He is now at the age where when too many people are holding him, OR a "stranger" (someone he doesn't see often if ever) is holding him, he will seek out me or Daryl and cry for a rescue. And as soon as one of us is holding him, he is a happy little boy. So there were moments the holiday weekend (like when Daryl's 5 year old cousin was repeatedly darting in Hunter's face and shoving toys in his mouth) that I could tell Hunter was about to have a break down so we would take him back for a reprieve. Poor boy!

But other than that and other typical holiday craziness, I had a great time. So here are the pics. Enjoy!



Hunter's pj's say "What Santa doesn't bring me, Grandma will!"