Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Olivia's antics

Warning, naked baby below!

Olivia Layne - 13 Months

 Wow, Livi! It's been a whole month since you turned 1. That was one FAST month. And a good one, too. Each day seems to get easier and more wonderful. You are growing up so much. I'm always amazed at how much you can understand and do. It seems like you understand pretty much everything we say to you. You can give us things when we ask. You look for things when they are hidden. You know the signs for "more," "please," "eat," "all done," and even taught us one for "binky" by putting your finger in your mouth. Sometimes you get confused, and sometimes I think you sign "more" when you simply want something, but it is really cool to see you learning and communicating. We went to the pet store last night and you saw a bird and got all excited, did your grunting excited voice and signed the bird sign! I was in awe! I didn't even know you knew it, but I guess you learned it from all the times we've read Brown Bear. You don't seem interested in repeating sounds or words, but I did ask you what a doggie says and you got a big smile and made a high pitched squeak. Clearly exactly right!

You got your eighth tooth this month! You still love to clap when music comes on, but you also do a little booty dance sometimes if you are standing up at the couch. You wear shoes everyday to get used to them and hopefully that will make it easier when you start walking. You can climb up the whole staircase by yourself and are slowly learning how to go downstairs backwards, although it's still tricky. I had to go buy you some new pants because lots of yours are getting too small and I couldn't deny it anymore when the skin on your legs was showing between your pants and socks. Your hair is getting long enough to be in your eyes if you don't have a bow in. You seem to keep the bows in for the most part now, which is nice. I don't want to trim a millimeter off of your pretty hair yet. I bought hair ties but it is impossible for me to put them in. Hopefully someday I will master the task.

You LOVE to go to the park and be outside. You get really excited when you see the chickies and can't wait to go play with them. Suprisingly enough they really don't seem to mind you and even Bella doesn't run away from you. You still love your pal Clarence, although he's becoming less attached to you, I think. He's still near most of the time, but not near enough to snuggle at all times. You are so funny because you usually try to butt heads with him :) You are getting more snuggly and at the end of the day when you are a little tired you will come up and put your head on my lap or give me a hug. You think it's great fun to snuggle and hug pillows and soft stuffed animals and to wrestle and fall all over soft things.

We have expanded your diapers to the biggest snap size up and down, but you still have a lot of width left. Your love affair with tomatoes has been put on hold by mama because your bottom turns too red and you even get a little splotchy rash on your legs. But you still enjoy turkey, puffs and pears a lot. You are also drinking milk in your bottles like a champ. I didn't need to worry about switching from forumla after all. I should have known! Your naps seem to be getting a little shorter even with Nayelle, so maybe it's a transition because of your age. You hardly nap at all at home unless I hold you the whole time, which I'm learning to cherish more. Your nighttime sleeping is all over the place with you waking up every 2 hours sometimes to only waking up 3 times other nights. Some nights you wake up 30 minutes after you go down, sometimes an hour and sometimes 3 hours. Silly girl. You usually caress your hair as you fall asleep, it is precious.

You LOVE to brush your teeth with our toothbrushes probably because you can taste the toothpaste on them. Hey, it works for me.

I feel like I have to much to catch up on after a month! No matter what I'm forgetting, I'll never forget how much joy you bring us or how much we love being your parents!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

My word for 2013

I’m not sure where or how this idea came about, but I’ve seen a lot of bloggers post about their “word” for the year. Somewhat like a new year resolution, I take it. I think it’s a pretty cool idea so I’ve been using the month of January to ponder what word I might pick for the year. Okay, Okay, I haven’t been “using the month of January” but it has floated through my mind several times in the month of January ;) It wasn’t easy picking out one meaningful word, I can tell you that! With all that has gone on in the past year, the ways I’ve grown and been stretched as a mother and wife, both the good, bad, smooth and difficult parts of it all, there seem to be a plethora of words my heart could rest on and hope for in 2013. How about patience? Learning to let go of my expectations and more readily go with the flow when things aren’t going as planned? How about contentedness as I continue to wrestle with wanting to be home more with my baby girl? Or humor as I, like pretty much everyone, struggle with the day to day minutiae of waking sleepily to get ready for work, packing bags, doing laundry, making dinner, sending and replying to emails, blah blah blah, and forget that life is good (!), there are things all around to make me laugh and smile and, oh yeah, why don’t I try to make people smile while I’m doing the day to day?! Then there is romance. Yep, that would be a good one. You mean couples with toddlers can have romance in their lives?! Is that question only coming from this girl? Oops!

Those are just a few words that flitted through my mind. Yet the word I want to really give my attention to, is CHERISH. Why on Earth should it be hard to cherish something or someone, someplace or some season or time? I certainly don’t know, and I don’t want it to be hard, so I will try to use 2013 to change that. As my tiny baby, who is no longer tiny, continues to get less tiny, I want to do all that is in me to cherish each day with her. Not to say there won’t be hard times, even times that are pretty much un-cherishable. Rather, to say that I want those sweet, special, even normal times to far outnumber and outweigh, both in the moment and in my memory, the less smooth times. Like watching her feed herself a new food that brings a smile to her face, watching her sign a word with such a look of pleasure that she could actually communicate, taking a moment in the grocery store to see things as she sees them, showing her fun, new things to do and play with, rocking her to sleep (an hour later!) and treasuring her weight in my arms rather than mentally going down my list of other things I could be doing. Even cherishing the learning that comes with mothering. For example, I recently learned that giving her a sticker while I change her diaper makes the whole process much easier for me and more pleasant for her. YAY! I want to relish in that goodness, however little it may seem. I want to use that experience to help me find ways for other tricky areas to become more cherishable.

AND, maybe more importantly, I want to shift my focus, lift my eyes up from my sweet girl and cherish other areas in my life again. My husband! No one seems to tell you how a marriage will change with a baby. Maybe some marriages don’t. Ours has. Not necessarily in a bad way, but it sure is different now. It’s so easy to put all our time and attention, our focus and energy on our baby. And why shouldn’t we? This little life, constantly growing, learning, relying on us. We are who she learns from! I want her to see and learn about love from us. I want her to learn about fun and relationships and partnering from us. My desire is that she will see me cherish her Daddy every single day! Again, I’m not naïve enough to think that focusing on a word will make all things cherishable. Who can cherish scooping cat litter for heavens sake? But I’m hoping that I can really soak in thankfulness for the things he does for me, for us. Appreciate his selflessness, his intelligence, his wish to relax and laugh and enjoy life (yes, even if that means watching every episode of The Big Bang Theory 8 times.) Encourage his talents and the way he lights up when he can do things he loves. Notice and support the way he impacts not only us but his students. I want to cherish this man and in doing so let him feel how thankful I am for him. I want to take time every day to sit with him, play with him, laugh with him, or just BE with him and show him I love him.

For some reason it’s not easy for me to stop, pause, take a breath, notice, focus and CHERISH some things. I know time is flying by. Stages are moving from one to the next. Life, in all it’s lifeness is going whether I take the time to appreciate things or not. All in all I think this word will help me fill in the gaps to the other words on my list. Maybe cherishing will pull me out of my selfishness and teach me how to give more. If I can slowly but surely meditate on soaking in the moments, people, places and things in my day, won’t it be easier to become selfless, to smile and laugh and see the humor in things, to be happy with things as they are, to love more easily? I believe so!

Did you pick a word for 2013? How about just a word for today?

PS, I just thought of something else a few minutes after I posted this. I also want to cherish the people in my life, which can be tricky for me to remember while I'm sifting through, well, my life. In reality a better word may be to appreciate them, but I will say cherish for the sake of the goal. My co-workers, my parents, my relatives, my friends, the milk man, the grocery store clerk, the tele-service rep, etc. You get the idea. These people, no matter how big or small of a part they play in my life, deserve my best attitude, some of my energy, and a lot of my love and gratefulness. Again, clearly not always easy. But what will it hurt me to give an extra smile, an extra thank you, and extra minute? Probably nothing.

Friday, January 25, 2013


on our way to Nayelle's. Livi is holding her new penguin from Auntie Kimberly, Avery and Luke!

Olivia LOVES tomatoes SO MUCH. Sadly they give her a really read bottom and I  think even rash splotches on her legs :(

Playing at the park on a warm day!

Playing with Lane at Grandma and Grandpa's house.

She has so much fun crawling all over in the snow and dirt. She must have crawled a mile! ;)

Uncle Scottie showing MJ the 4-wheeler ropes


crawling up...

...crawling around

um, this is NOT how you go down stairs, Daddy!

Maybe she loves boxes as much as Clarence?

playing with cousin Isaac

Embrace the Camera

Friday, January 11, 2013

Fun times!

taking after her mama!

maybe it's because I vacuumed so much while she was in my tummy?

truly, my floor has never been cleaner ;)

expereminting with a ponytail.

Clarence getting into yet another box

so happy riding the horsey!

not a very common sight-relaxing and snuggling

the gorgeous teepee great grammy made! checking it out for the first time

Clarence loves it

how precious is this?

it's final home-in the living room

we added lights!

playing with uncle scottie


Goooooo Broncos!