One Fish, Two Fish

Anna, Month Seven September 17, 2011

Filed under: Anna,Letters,Month Seven,Photo — leighnut @ 8:32 pm

Dear Anna,

I can’t believe how quickly you are growing! Every time I turn around, you are doing something new, saying some new syllable, surprising me at every turn. I am amazed by your discoveries and so proud of your inquisitive nature.

You have a new dance move this month. We call it “Rock, rock, rock!” You sit in your high chair, or on the floor, or standing in someone’s lap and rock — back and forth, back and forth — while grinning. When there’s music on, your new dance moves always make an appearance. I don’t know where you got your moves, because Daddy and I, uh, we don’t dance, but we love it!

You are definitely scooting all over the place and have quite an interesting way of doing it. You reeeaaaach for your target, then roll onto the side that’s stretched out. Then you pull your feet up underneath your body and lurch forward toward your reaching hand. After rolling back onto your stomach, you reaaaach with the other hand, then repeat the process on the opposite side. It’s a slow process, but you always reach your goal — unless, of course, Sam snatches the toy away from you before you get there. He often remembers to make a trade for one of your toys, but sometimes he leaves you high and dry. All that work and no reward. Poor baby. Somehow, you press on, finding another more suitable object of desire and slowly make your way to it.

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it, but you have a lot to say. You make so many noises. Daddy and I are always impressed by the repertoire of sounds you make. You can say la, ga, na, ba, ah, ee, oh, and uh. And, this month, you’ve started smacking your lips. Smack, smack, smack, all the time! Every single time we put you in your high chair, you start smacking your lips and reciting the day’s monologue: Da da da da la na na na… DA DA DA da na na na! It’s very cute.

You still spend lots of time on your tummy. You play airplane, where your arms and legs are floating off the ground. And now, you pound your hands on the ground, or on the table, or your body. We say, “pound, pound, pound!” and you bang whatever surface is in front of you. You are very proud about this new skill. Grinning ensues.

You are trying new foods all the time. Your favorites are peaches, oatmeal, and a blend of spinach, peas, and pear. It looks awful, but you open your mouth like a little bird for more bites! I think you’re finally starting to look forward to meals. You’ve even tried a couple of sweet potato mango puffs. You like to push them around the tray and pick them up. They often get lost in your fist or stuck on your face as you try to get them in your mouth.

Anna, you continue to be such a happy, loving baby. You often check in with me as you play, reaching up as if to say hi, before diving back into the pile of toys you’ve gathered around yourself. There is nothing sweeter than your smiling blue eyes and drooly grin. Each slimy kiss from you just makes my day. You are my best girl, Anna. I love you.



He Totally Thought It Was Going to Taste Like Chocolate January 11, 2009

Filed under: Goofball,Month Seven,Photo,Sam — leighnut @ 10:15 pm




Welcome Teefs

Filed under: Firsts,Milestones,Month Seven,Neurotic,Sam — leighnut @ 10:12 pm

Well, it’s here. The teething is here. Sam’s first tooth is coming in as. we. speak. It’s his lower right tooth, for those of you who get into details. He’s been handling it pretty well, considering his inexperienced parents didn’t catch on right away. Last night, Sam cried for about forty minutes while I was trying to get him down to sleep. I thought he was wet — nope. I thought he was just being obstinate, which often happens when trying to put him down to sleep, because he doesn’t like to miss anything. That wasn’t it either. The final trick is always feeding him, regardless of the last time he ate. While I was feeding him, he was literally whimpering. Little mewing noises, like he just didn’t have the energy to cry anymore. It was the saddest little noise. I brought him downstairs and felt in his mouth (which I’ve been doing for a couple of weeks, waiting for teeth), and there it was — a sharp little bump. My little man is getting a toof. I gave him Tylenol and an ice cube, and proceeded to feel awful that I didn’t get what he was so clearly trying to tell me and he was hurting. We’ve kissed and made up, but that little whimper haunted me all night. Because I was up with Sam three times. Apparently, when you cut teefs, you give up sleeping. Like Catholics and meat during Lent. Only more painful.


Stand and Deliver… Or Drool. Whatever.

Filed under: Firsts,Goofball,Milestones,Mom and Dad,Month Seven,Mushy,Photo,Sam — leighnut @ 10:02 pm

Sam has officially mastered the great feat of pulling himself up to his feet. And he loves to do it any chance he can get. I don’t know why we have toys for him, because all he wants to do is stand and grab things off the coffee table.

Here’s how I found him last Thursday when he was supposed to be napping:


Notice the proud grin. He was so happy to be standing there. In fact, when I found him, I said, “Sam, stay there, I’m going to get the camera.” He stood there and waited for me to come back. I’m sure he was grinning the whole time.

I love that little monkey.


Traverse City Christmas January 8, 2009

The Christmas saga continues…

On the 26th, we loaded up the car and headed to TC for second Christmas. The drive was actually smooth, considering it was December and weather in the Upper Peninsula is always iffy in the winter. We got there in the evening and had a major present-wrapping extravaganza, courtesy of all the willing babysitters in the house. Everyone was there: Bob and Muriel, Ken and Gina, Rich and Chris, and Kim, Matt, and Andrew. And there was a puzzle out. You may not know this about me, but I LOVE doing puzzles. But I managed to stay away from the puzzle table until all of the wrapping was done.

“Christmas morning” in TC was a whirlwind of unwrapping and chasing the army-crawler around to remove bits of paper from his chipmunk cheeks. Sam was again in heaven with all the paper and boxes. His favorite gift was a jingle bell on a loop that he shakes and shakes, beaming as it rings. (At home, when he shakes it, I say, “ding a ling a ling!” and he grins. It’s our new game.) Rob tried to get pictures, but Sam was not into it. He was more into chewing gift bags and trying to steal the shiny silver thing from Rob’s hands:


Andrew did his very best to hold Sam on a number of occasions. Sam is not so much into sitting still anymore, but he did his best. Andrew did a good job of keeping a tight hold on the wiggly baby.


Ken and Gina taught Sam how to climb stairs. They thought it would be soooo cute for Sam to learn it. When I came around the corner and saw what Sam had learned, my first reaction was, “Nooooooo!” But they worked really hard and Sam was so pleased that I quickly changed my tune. Here’s Gina with Sam on said stairs, admiring the garland:


Grandpa P read books with Sam, who was very happy to help by turning the pages.


We had a quiet new year celebration with just Bob and Muriel and the three of us. We watched Dick Clark’s triumphant return to the ball-dropping celebration, but mostly watched Sam try to pull himself up on the coffee table or the TV stand or our legs. We are thankful for 2008 and all of the adventure and joy that it has brought us. And we look forward to 2009, a year full of baby boy bumps and bruises, firsts steps and words — and more date nights for the grown-ups.


Finally! The Appleton Christmas post. January 7, 2009

I think this is officially the longest stretch of time without a new post. What a bad, bad blogger I am! It seems that the more active Sam gets, the less time I can sit and write without finding Sam with something not approved for baby play. Like little bits of plastic wrap or a mouthful of cardboard. More on that later…

Christmas was so wonderful. We were able to be with both sides of the family for a long time. I am so grateful that Rob is a teacher and I am flexible with work so that we can enjoy these long breaks with family and friends. It’s lovely.

We spent Christmas proper in Appleton this year. Sam was so excited to have a new house to explore and a dog to stare at (i.e. Meg. We did not get a Christmas puppy). He thought it was awesome that ? and ? Hoffman also had a big green toy in the living room decked with lights and ornaments for him to play with. I’m sure he wonders why it can’t always be that way. And this tree had presents under it, which was even better, because who doesn’t like a little wrapping paper snack between meals? We designated one of Sam’s presents as a do-what-you-will present, so he could eat it, throw it around, etc. He managed to completely unwrap it by Christmas eve. I wish I had a dollar for every piece of paper I’ve finger-swept out of Sam’s oral cavity this winter. I’d retire to an island.

Speaking of finger-sweeping, when we were in Traverse City (yes, I know I’m going out of order), I found a piece of mushy paper in Sam’s crib when I picked him up from a nap. I thought, “Huh, that’s weird. Where did this come from?” When I got to the bottom of the stairs, Sam was making these funny mouth movements (not uncommon during these my-gums-feel-funny-because-I’m-teething times). I swept his mouth with my finger and found a piece of saliva-soaked cardboard about the size of a silver dollar. Perfect choking size. I had to shake off the creepy feeling that he could have choked in his sleep and I would have never known. It is still a mystery where he got it, because we’ve all watched him like hawks. Big featherless ones who take all the fun out of exploring by removing dangerous objects from reach. We’re such bad grown-ups.

OK, back to Appleton. Christmas Eve was fun. Sam and Sophie were in matching Christmas outfits. Here they are doing their best impression of American Gothic, minus the hoe and pitchfork:


And here they are moments before. Sam is being too friendly. (That’s Drew’s hand, saving the day.)


Sorry, Sophie.

We had family and friends over for dinner and went to the late service at church. Sam was not into the sitting-still-in-church thing. He wanted to eat the offering envelopes and grab the fuzzy hood of the girl’s jacket sitting in front of him. He talked a lot and generally preferred the singing of hymns to the sermonizing. (Sounds a lot like me until I was in, oh, my early 20’s.) In fact, I missed the sermon altogether, because Sam and I were in the usher’s room having a little mealtime bonding. When we got home from church, Rob read Sam The Night Before Christmas. And then we opened Christmas jammies and went to bed.

We did Christmas morning old school this year, and got up at 6:30. That’s a.m. Morning. Pre-sun. It was great. I have an internal Christmas clock that wakes me up anyway, so I was ready to go. Sam missed most of Christmas morning festivities, because he slept until 9:00. We saved a few presents for him to open when he woke up. He’s very into the ripping of the paper. Why in the world we actually got anything for him is a mystery. We could have just wrapped up an empty box with paper in it. It would have been the Best. Christmas. Ever! 🙂 Here’s Sam with his giraffe teething toy, plus the 2008 Christmas jammies for Mommy and Sam.


After breakfast, we all got ready and went to Tom and Kim’s for Christmas afternoon. When we walked into the house, Sam thought he had died and gone to heaven. There was so much to look at! Ceiling fans and log beams! Deer heads (deer busts? What do you call them?) and a huuuuuge Christmas tree! He just stared and stared up at the ceiling and the walls. Most importantly, Rob and I were introduced to Wii bowling. Turns out I have a pretty mean left hook. Not good for Wii bowling.

Sam reached more milestones in the midwest. He pulled himself up to his knees in the crib on December 21. Here’s the photographic evidence to prove it.


We put his crib mattress to the lowest position when we got home. Mr. Monkey’s parents are all about safety.

It was so great to be there for a week, hanging out and having Christmas and just being together. It makes us more and more anxious to live closer to our families so we can have more times like these. Not just at Christmas or other occasions, but because it’s a Tuesday or it’s raining.


Oh, Internet, Where Have You Been? December 29, 2008

Filed under: Mom and Dad,Month Seven,Neurotic,Travelin' Travelin' — leighnut @ 12:16 am

It seems that travel always slows the blog post production way down. If I were a more faithful blogger (ha! I just typed ‘blooger!’), I would already have pictures from Christmas morning up on the site for all to see. I’d like to blame the lack of pictures on the fact that I don’t have access to wireless right now (true) or that I have nothing to write about (false), but excuses get us (me) nowhere. While we (you) wait for pictures, just know that a fun time is being had by all and that nothing beats family and friends.

Oh, and I think you should know that I ate my weight in guacamole tonight. Not pretty.