Monday, May 18, 2015

5 months!

Little Miss Vivien is even more smile-y than ever, if that's even possible.  She just lights up with these huge smiles, especially if Ryder or I look at her or play with her.  She's full of giggles now and loves to be tickled.  She really loves Ryder, which is good since he is all over her!  He constantly asks to give her a "Mwah" and squeals with excitement when he sees her on the floor, since he can give her those full body hugs that he loves so much!

She can't sit up herself yet, but she can stay sitting up in the corner of the couch pretty well now.  We broke out the Bumbo chair this month and she enjoys that.  Now she can sit up with us while we eat and play with some toys while we have our meals.  She has a couple of rattles that she likes to grab, shake and eat.

Vivien was introduced to Ducky Friend last month and now she also has Tiger Friend.  She has taken to them quickly.  She loves to grab them and pull them to her face, although she freaks a little when they get stuck on her face.  She starts flailing a little, but she doesn't start crying.  Whenever that happens, Ryder is quick to help her get it off her face.

I have been working on getting her on a more regular sleep schedule, which she seems more amenable to than Ryder did at the same age.  She now goes to bed before we do and before she is 6 months she'll be in her own room, in the crib.  She still fits in the bassinet, but now that she is moving more she hits the side and gets a little scrunched in the corner.  Her naps are a little more regular, though she only goes 1-2 hours between naps; any longer and she gets very over tired.  A couple of times I have achieved the nirvana of simultaneous naps, but it's not a daily occurrence, although I do get some overlap.  On the days that she doesn't want to nap, Ryder usually feels the same way!  What the heck!

Happy smiles!

Always hands in the mouth!

She can sort of sit up unassisted. 

What a face!

Big, big smiles!

With her friends.

Tired girl!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

2 Years + 1 month? 25 months?

I don't know what to title this month's update.  2 years + 1 month is so long but 25 months sounds so weird.  In France, little kid's sizes go to 36 months, at the least (the last size that I bought for Emma- since she's 6 I clearly need to get back to France ASAP!), so maybe it isn't so weird.  I'll have to try them both out to decide!

Ryder has been having a blast this month.  Finally the weather has started cooperating and we have been able to go outside a lot more and for longer.  Janda was home sick the week before vacation and we went outside for at least 4 hours to give him some time to rest.  And still Ryder wasn't ready to come in!  He still likes to be pushed in the stroller, he loves to take walks and play in the yard and street (we're at the end of a dead end road), he will dig in the dirt until the cows come home and he loves loves loves seeing and especially following the big trucks.  We followed the recycling truck all the way around the point one day.

He hasn't learned too many new words this month, although he is getting better at repeating words that we say.  Mostly his new vocabulary this month has come in the form of onomatopoeia.  Some are from before this month, but most are new.  He has been doing cat, dog, lion, owl, monkey, cow, sheep, pig, motorcycle, truck and Cookie Monster.  There may be more.  My favorites are cat and Cookie Monster.  The cat's meow that he does is very soft and gentle, unlike most of the other sounds.  The Cookie Monster is hysterical "Um yum yum yum yum!" with the accompanying head shake that Cookie Monster does.  Janda is quite partial to the motorcycle, of course!

The Legos still get dumped out every morning and the trucks are pushed around the living room all day.  The bouncy balls are thrown and lost to be found later throughout the day also.  This month I got Ryder some small 12 piece wooden puzzles, because  he loves his Little Blue Truck puzzle so much, and he is a champ at them.  There was no picture to look at, so he needed a little help at first, but now he does them almost completely on his own.  He continues to love to draw and color- I am amazed that he can draw very good circles and once he even turned the circle into a face, with eyes, nose and hair, and said "Daddy!"

We have introduced him to his big boy room and we have been playing in there quite a bit to get him used to it.  Any day now we will be trying to sleep in there. Hopefully he takes to sleeping in the big boy bed, because we need that crib for Vivi!

Two year old tantrums aside, he is very happy!

He loves to draw.

Watching everything that is going on outside.

Even though he has 3 friends of his own, somehow Vivi's Ducky friend is the one he wants.

Always building with those Legos!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

4 months!

I'm not sure if it's because I'm busier, less worried or it's the second time around, but Vivien seems to be getting so big sooo fast!  I can't believe that she has hit the 4 month mark and is less than 2 months away from moving into her own room and eating solid foods!

She still sleeps a ton, of course, but she is certainly awake for longer stretches than she used to be. When she is awake, she loves to be looking around at everything that is happening and she loves eye contact with me.  When Ryder was little, he got loads of tummy time because he was always on my chest, but Vivien hasn't been interested in being held like that for quite some time, unless we're walking around and she can see the sights.  At night, she is still waking up between 1 and 3am occasionally, but more frequently she sleeps through til 3-4am and then wakes up every couple of hours thereafter until she gets up for the day at 9am.

This month she was introduced to Ducky friend (no doubt, a distant relative of Monkey friend, Froggy friend and Elephant friend who came to stay with Ryder 2 years ago) and she loves to grab the blanket part of the "lovey" and move it around.  Except in the bassinet, she always has Ducky friend with her- for now as something she can grab and hopefully later as something that will help her sleep!  When she's not grasping Ducky friend, she likes to get a handful of hair.  Usually it's mine, but she has gotten in a pull on Ryder's hair a few times- turnabout is fair play for all the rough housing she has had to endure!

She is getting stronger as the days go by.  When she is able to lay down on the blanket, Vivien is constantly kicking and moving about.  She can sit up in the corner of the couch for quite some time without tipping over or sliding down, but she does wiggle and get out of position when she wants to.

We are very lucky that she is a super happy baby and smiles all the time.  All we have to do is look at her and she busts out the biggest smiles.  She has started to giggle a lot too.  She makes a ton of cooing noises, to us and to herself.  Sometimes when she is up in the bassinet, all we hear is cooing over the baby monitor.

Sitting up like a champ

All smiles!

"You want a smile?  I'll stick my tongue out instead!"

"Even though you've taken a million pictures of me, this camera thing is surprising!"

There's the smile, just a half though

Saturday, April 4, 2015

2 Years Old!!

My teeny-tiny, premature first born baby is now 2.  His new clothes no longer are measured in months, but years and now that we have a baby again, it's so obvious that he isn't a baby anymore, although I still call him my baby!

The word of the month is definitely "bubble."  As the snow has been melting, there have been constant puddles on our street and Ryder discovered he can make bubbles in the water in a variety of ways.  He got a bubble mower for his birthday, so that completely cemented the bubbles as his new favorite discovery.

His favorite outdoor activity as Spring has been creeping in is definitely puddle jumping.  No matter what he is wearing, no matter how cold and wet he gets, he loves puddle jumping.  Inside it has still been all trucks all the time.  We have many kinds of trucks here and he loves them all: "big truck," "dump truck," "fire truck," "mail truck" and of course "daddy truck."  This past month we have made infinite Lego trucks.   He can sit and play with his Legos or coloring supplies for quite some time.  He certainly prefers to play with one of us, but he will play with them himself for a while too.

Ryder has been giving lots of love to us this month and also frustrating us with many mini tantrums.   He loves to give us hugs and kisses, especially Vivi!  When he wants to kiss her, or someone else (maybe a cat!), he says "Mwah" to let us know what he wants.  It is so very cute, as long as he is gentle, which isn't exactly always the case!  He has been having mini meltdowns at the drop of a hat lately.  If I don't know how he wants his Lego truck to be built and build it the right way, he cries.  If I can't figure out what he wants from the kitchen, he cries.  Don't do something fast enough, he cries; don't play with him exactly when he wants, he cries; change his diaper, he cries.  I think you can see how this is going.  Luckily us he calms down very quickly and moves on.  We just sing to him "put your head on my shoulder" and he relaxes and gets over it.

Happy Birthday Ryder!
Ryder with his birthday banner.

Playing with those Lego trucks.

We either make balls or snakes with the Playdoh.

When we ask "How old are you?" he holds up his thumb and pointer.

What a face!

What a smile!

Monday, March 23, 2015

3 months!

Vivien is still in an eat-sleep-eat-sleep routine.   She stays awake for only short periods of time still, but certainly more frequently.  She now sits up in the corner of the couch or lays on a blanket for a while and looks around to see what's happening.  But if we keep her awake for too long, she lets us know by getting very fussy.  When she is awake, she smiles a whole lot.  It doesn't take much at all to get a huge toothless grin out of her.

She is a pretty good sleeper at night too.  She usually naps downstairs in the evening until we're ready for bed, between 10 and 11 most nights.  I feed her a little, but shes usually ready for her nighttime sleep at that point.  Many nights she sleeps straight through til 4-5am, sometimes a little earlier, sometimes a little later.  After I feed her around 7am, Ryder and I go downstairs and she sleeps in the bassinet for a couple hours more.

A couple of times this month, and even before, she has rolled onto her side.  I would say that it's always the left side.  Once this past month, she rolled all the way onto her stomach.  She would probably try that more if I was able to let her hang out on the floor more, but Ryder can be a little dangerous with his affection if she's unattended!  She has also lost a lot of hair this month, in all the places that her head rubs on the mattress so far.  Her eyes are still blue at this point and we're not quite sure which direction they're headed.  I guess we'll wait and see.
Love that toothless grin!

She stays up pretty well on her own.

Arms and legs are always moving, just like Ryder.

Just chillin'

That little face!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

23 Months!

Inching our way closer to 2 years old!!  It's pretty crazy to think that later this month it will have been 2 years since he was born.  It seems like yesterday, but on the other hand so much has happened since then!

His speaking skills continue to improve.  He is saying more and more 2 word combinations- last month he started adding "other" to words, this month he has been combining people and things to show possession.  He loves to point out "Daddy cup" and "Mommy elbow" and so on and so forth.

He really enjoys throwing balls. We got him a basketball hoop for Christmas, and he likes putting the ball in the hoop, but mostly he loves throwing balls all over.  He will throw them across the room, or he'll sit next to a wall and bounce it off the wall back to himself.  He is building cars with his Legos by himself now and then he pushes them around the floor.  His favorite winter activity so far is shoveling, followed closely by sledding.  He takes the little car shovel and pushes snow around the driveway and street.  If he sees the shovel on the way to or from the car, he loses his mind when he can't shovel then and there!

Now before bed he helps pick up the living room and dining room.  When I say "Let's pick up" he starts grabbing things and putting them away.  He knows right where almost everything goes.  He is also showing more interest in his clothes.  He will let us know when he wants to keep on his PJ's or wear his choo-choo shirt.  He also tries to help Vivien when she's upset.  If he hears her crying in the kitchen or on the monitor, he wants me to go get her right away.  If she is in her car seat and crying, he will rock it to try to comfort her.

He has his four front teeth top and bottom, plus his four molars are firmly established now.  I'm pretty sure some other teeth will be coming soon, because all of a sudden he is drooling a lot again.

He sat down for about a minute this time...

then it was up and at 'em!

Goofing around on the couch.

 Chilling out in the back of his truck.

On the move in his truck.

We've been seeing this face a lot lately!

He loves his cars, or trucks, as he calls them.

Monday, February 16, 2015

2 months!

Little miss Vivien is 2 months old now.  Not too much has changed- she is still very much in the newborn stage.  There's a lot of eating and sleeping going on here.  She's up to 10 lbs and 5 oz, a very healthy 2 lb gain in the past month!  She usually eats every 3 hours or so, but many evenings she wants to eat constantly.  Luckily that stops once we go to bed.  She has started sleeping in the bassinet with no issues now- she goes right in once she's asleep or half-asleep.  She usually wakes up once in the middle of the night 1-3am depending on when we've gone to bed and then again in the early morning.  She does't like to sleep in the bassinet much during the day, but she will usually sleep there from her morning feeding til 8:30-9ish.  That gives me time to get Ryder up, changed and fed before I bring her down.

She has longer periods of wakefulness now, I think around 2 hours is her record.  When she's awake, she's looking around a lot more.  Her eyes are drawn to any light source in the room.  She has started smiling a lot, it starts in her eyes and then ends up with a big toothless grin.  She can't quite hold her head steady, but she does a good job for a few seconds and she lifts it up a lot.  When she's on our chests, she pushes back and lifts her head to get a good look at us.  She is also very good with Ryder- she tolerates his hardcore kisses pretty well.  I never leave them alone together, even her swing is in a gated part of the house, but if I did, he would be on top of her with a full body hug in a heartbeat.

She is growing out of her newborn clothes, she really only has a couple of newborn items left that fit.  So sad!  She is now able to wear the froggy pajamas (seen below) which were my absolute favorite outfit when Ryder was a newborn. I'm so glad to see them again!

Those eyes are still blue.

So serious!

It was only a matter of time til she fell over.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

22 months!

This was Ryder's first full month as a big brother.  After Vivien had been around for a week or so, Ryder decided her face was a drum set and would hit it any chance he could.  He was still giving her kisses, but hitting was more frequent.  Luckily he stopped, cold turkey, one Wednesday and it's been only kisses, hugs and fist bumps since then.

His speaking skills are really taking off at this point.  He probably knows twice as many words as he did two months ago and he is starting to repeat words after us much more easily.  The word of the month for this month is "fire truck," followed closely by "choo choo."  I'm pretty sure I've heard him say "up" this month and after meals he says "sleeves" so that someone will pull his sleeves back down.  He has also mastered the word "other" and will ask us where the other ball is, for example.  He has also learned a bunch of animal sounds, probably since he has so many books about animals.  He also hums along with songs now and sings a couple of words too.

He got a lot of fun new toys and books for Christmas and now he can really entertain himself with them for quite some time, so that I can do things in the kitchen while he plays.  He builds all kinds of big trucks with his Legos and shoots hoops with his new basketball hoop.  He even sits and reads/looks at books by himself.

He is definitely getting to the terrible two age and has been having lots of temper tantrums and cries at the slightest provocation.  It must be hard to not understand why things happen- why he can't have or do certain things and why he has to do other certain things.  That doesn't make it any easier to deal with though!

We got a new fireplace this past month and Ryder is obsessed with the fire and the candles.   He likes to stand by the fire and warm his hands, which is too cute.  He also loves to help start the fire and to help move the logs around the living room and he tries to put them in the fireplace.  He makes us very nervous!  So far he has a healthy respect for the fire; we are trying to keep it that way.

I told him that I wanted him to sit down for a picture- I was thinking the living room, but he jumped right on his table, sat down and looked at me!

Getting his music going, he loves to dance and sing.

Eating some delicious kale soup.

Pondering something.

I told him I wanted him to jump, so he went and stood up on the couch.

Just chillin'