Thursday, December 18, 2014

Dear Nick- Month 36 (Year 3)

Dear my BEAUTIFUL son Nicholas,

 Happy 3rd BIRTHDAY little buddy! I cannot believe how much you have gown and flourished, and you amaze me every day. Your personality, your joy, your incredible heart, you spirit and energy fills my heart up to the brim.  I don’t even know where to begin this letter because there is so much you say and do that I want to remember for always, and my mind cant choose where to start?

Lets start with you were selt motivated to potty train! I have been  encouraging you for a quite a few months now with little luck, until a couple weeks before thanksgiving you just got it. Like, you have been doing it your whole life. You havent gone pee in your diaper (even at night!) for a while, and you tell me all the time when you need go. You transitioned perfectly to big boy underwear, although you are still “scared” to poop in the potty. And you don’t want to go at daycare yet.  But I know it will just click in there, too. Just like everything does  for you. You move through life with cautious optimism. You always like to stick your toe in the water first before you jump, and that is your trademark. And quite frankly, that is JUST fine!  You are measured and aware of yourself and your surroundings, in all honesty this makes you wise and more mature than most your age.  Even last night when we went to see Santa with the neighborhood kids, you didn’t want to sit on his lap because he seemed a little too scary for you. Even if I told you he was nice, and Adrianna offered to hold your hand, you did NOT want to. I even sat on his lap with Mrs. Putnick and Mrs. Fierrer. But as we were walking out you didn’t get to say bye to santa so we rushed back in, you waited your turn (and told me “ he is not scary, and he is not a monster” and sat right down. Then proceeded to tell him you wanted candy and French toast for Christmas. God love you. Oh ya, and while we walked to the car you wanted a hug from him.

One thing about you that I LOVE is you want to please. You WANT to be a good boy, and you hate it when I tell you did something bad. You are quick to correct to tell me you are a good boy. You always want to help, you love to feel useful and I love it more than anything when we do things together. You help with the laundy, the dishes, cooking dinner, cleaning up toys, washing bottles, everything.  You are also getting quite independent too. Can brush your teeth on your own, get undressed by yourself, take off your shoes, open and shut the car and climb in, and I know there is more—and way too often you will get mad at us for trying to help you do things you can do on your own. You use of language if impeccable, too.  YOu still carry  a tune with you as you go around, and now that it is Christmas you have a whole slew of songs you sing now.  I admire your love for music, sometimes you will ask to wait in the car until a song is over, or turn up the volume so you can hear something, I will catch you sitting in the office next to the old CD player we have in there just listening  to one of your Baby Genius or Mickey  CDs. It’s rubbed off on your brother because he is a DANCER!

You still REALLY love Mickey (and BOB!) boy you would do almost anything for him.  You love to play ball, trains, and dance till the sun comes up. You have always loved reading books and I hope it never gets old. You recognize/know pretty much all of the letters of the alphabet and can even spells some words now too including all of our names.  Numbers and shapes are no problem, too. I think you are one smart cookie.

You are sweet and cuddly, and so darn beuaitufl I just stare at you sometimes in awe. I cannot believe you are mind, I so proud of you and all that you have become I could burst.  I love that you have grown into a relationship with your little brother, too. You love it when each other is around, and always ask where he is when you  don’t see him. I catch you guys running and chasing each other, too and laughing. The sound of your footsteps and laughter around the house is the best thing in the whole world. I know I will miss these days when you get older, I am trying to savor all that you are and everything that makes you, you.  I cant  for Christmas with you both, and then we get to go on a cruise right after and you are SO excited. You ask every day now if you can go on a cruise ship. And then you truck your mickey bag around with you ready to get it packed. I hope it’s a wonderful time, and I cant wait for some warm weather. I cant wait for all that is in store for us in 2015 We closed  our your two years with an awesome golden birthday party for you, over 40 people came to our house and you got TONS of toys.  You are one loved little boy. And it’s true,  We love you more than anything, Nick.  Keep being you, it is JUST PERFECT.

 All the love in the world,


Monday, December 1, 2014

Dear Christopher- Month 12

Dear Christopher---
Happy Birthday little man!! I cant believe it was already a year since we met you, and boy you have changed our lives. All for the better. Where did the time go, you are past your baby months and transitioning effortlessly into toddlerdom.  It is still hard to believe at this time last year I was navigating sleepless nights, re-learning how to feed you, cuddle you, swaddle you, and now look where we are. You have developed your own personality and your own look, and your own way of loving and I fall more in love with you the more I get to know you.

You continue to hit all your milestones with ease-- you took your first steps with Mommy and daddy's help 6 days before you turned one on November 16th. With a little luck during big brother's nap time, we got you to take 3 steps, then 6 steps, then 12 steps and within days you were walking across the room and standing up on your own. Now that it has been a couple weeks you just hobble around walking anywhere there is open space... usually babbling something or pointing. It probably is the funniest and cutest thing in the world. That first week you took a major spill on the coffee table and got a pretty sweet looking cut right over your eyebrow. You didn't need stitched thank goodness, but it was pretty hard and deep.  You rolled with it and about 3 minutes later you didn't even know why we were still dabbing your eye with a paper towel.

You have endured way more bumps, falls, crashed, pushes, shoves than your older brother. Mostly because now what you are taking an interest in certain toys, can get to them on your own, and actually now have preferences it has all taken your older brother by surprise since everything all once was his territory. Now he has to... dun dun... share. Surprisingly-- or maybe not so surprisingly since your big brother is pretty smart and VERY kind-- there are way more happy play times than not so happy play times. Luckily you are just used to the occasional push.  There was a brief phase you went through when you could anticipate Nick coming up to grab whatever you are playing with and you would just freeze and let our a yelp " aaaaaaa." Ha, the look on your face is priceless.  Daycare has taught him a swap technique-- where he will still take what he wants from you but replace it with something else. Interesting.... and so far pretty effective.

You are still a chart topper with your amazing weight gaining abilities. You were 27lbs at your last well check that put you in the 94 percentile. Not bad little man. But i think you are already starting to thin out since you are walking.  I will definitely miss squeezing those adorable thighs. You have somewhere around 6-8 teeth now but I hate to admit i am losing track. YOu can eat pretty well and handle yourself wonderfully at the table. You even try to use a fork sometimes too.  You are a little pickier than your brother, but I wont hold you too it because it can always change.

You love being around your brother basically any time, and you will follow him wherever he goes with limitless trust. But you are always a mommy's boy and will take a cuddle or a hug anytime there is one available. YOu will throw your arms around me, pop your head up and smile at me and then throw your head into my chest to hug it out. It is perfect and I love how lovable you are. Watching you are your brother interact puts the wind in my sails and fills my heart every time i see it. It's the reason I was put on this planet... to love you both unconditionally and watch you love each other.  I didnt think i could win the jackpot twice with TWO perfect kids but I did.  And you I love every stage you move in and out of.  I am going to enjoy this adorable age you are at the fullest, and drink it up with never ending thirst because I know it is fleeting.  We had sucha fun thanksgiving, anmd lots of fun holiday activities to look forward too. Including birthday parties, a trip to cleveland, Christmas, Santa visits, Christmas eve and Christmas day, and a CRUISE at the end of the month. So much fun happening and I cant wait for it all. Happy Birthday little Chris, we all love you keep on doing what you are doing. And being amazing.

Lots and lots of love.

Monday, October 20, 2014


Here is the funny thing about beauty ... It is always around you. And in the spaces, moments, feeling that you don't see it, that is because you are not looking in the right place. It's not always right in front of you. And in those really difficult times searching for it can completely alter the way you percieve what's happening and all of a sudden what it is you are going through doesn't quite seem so bad after all.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Dear Chris- Month 9.75 (10)

My beautiful Baby Boy-- How beautiful you are, too...

I cant believe it, but you manage to actually get cuter each month. It's true, I swear every time I look at you we all fall more and more in love. YOu are truly a lover of all things and people, too-- the way you look into our eyes and just rest in our arms when we hold you. What a content person, and an all around joy to be around. We all just cant get enough.

Your mobility is off the charts, you are simply everywhere these days. And fast too. You just started cruising on the furniture so I predict you will be walking before Halloween. You even go upstairs now too. You not eat all kinds of table foods with us as your teeth count is every growing, I think it's 8 now.  You are still large-- and very much in charge. Very opinionated about what you like and don't like-- but so easy going with how rough your big brother can be. He seems to take a lot of things from you-- and you get pushed around way more than I expected. But you seem very reliant mister.

You like to sleep in the mornings so often times we are up even before you, but going to bed can be troublesome. Ferber is in your future (as much as I wish it wasn't).  You generally wake up happy, and you are SOOO gabby!!! SO much to say, always chatting, always something new coming out of your mouth. Impressive that you are advancing so much but physically and verbally at the same time-- usually one takes a back seat. Daddy and I both think you are one smart cookie.

This past month you have had visits with your grandma and grandpa Gudaitis, trips to Kings Island, trips to the park, play dates, your first hair cut and so much more. October is such a fun month, I cant wait to see you and your bother dress up for Halloween. Lots of fall activities to look forward too-- You are growing up so quickly. And you are SO beautiful and sweet, you make every day brighter.

We love you so much,

Love, Mommy

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Dear Chris- Month 8.75

Dear Chris ( Month 8.75)
You are crawling!! You started crawling fairly early ( I think) at just over your 8 month birthday (and within a week you were zipping around the house). You are fast and I always hear you coming as those adorable thighs pound the floor. Slap slap thump thump . Your big brother loves that you are mobile now and you can follow him around. Even though he isn’t the best as sharing and sometimes doesn’t like you playing with his toys.  Watching you two play together puts the wind in my sails, even on the hardest days watching your brotherly love is so spirit lifting.  The bond you are forming right now can never be replaced, you are both such beautiful people.
You are getting more adventurous with your eating habits, too. You eat all kinds of fruits and vegetables, and are even eating some table food now too—not just the pureed baby food I have been making for you. Your pincers and incredibly precise! Impressive little man.  Your tooth count holds steady at 5 (3 on the bottom, two on top) and those are sharp little suckers. I am teaching you NOT TO BITE.  That’s a big lesson this month, and I do think you are actually getting it.
You surely love to be close to your brother, but being by mommy is still number one. I am pretty sure when you are tired or hungry or any kind of unhappy I am the only one who can hold you and make things better.  You are mama’s boy, I love love it.  You are still not the best sleeper, but your smiles and affection towards me (and whoever is around you) more than makes up for those troublesome moments.  Mimi said to me last week when she picked you up from daycare you ‘Hellen kellered her face’. You just touched her face so gently and looked up to her as if the mere fact that she was there was all the world needs. I’ve even received comments from strangers about how engaging you are. You certainly are a beautiful soul.
You go to the doctor in a couple weeks for your 9 month check and I can’t wait to see what you weigh. I am guessing you are still tipping the scales (likely over 24 lbs). And getting quite long too. I think you will be standing on your own and cruising in the next month too. You can already pull yourself up on furniture.  You have been pretty healthy over all, fighting a few colds and runny nose. Teething hasn’t been the most fun and I can noticeably see your discomforts some days. But generally you are one tough cookie.
I have enjoying the warm summer days and I hope the spend as much time as I can while we still have this beautiful weather. Hard to believe September and fall are just right around the corner. But there is always something to look forward too. Thank you for being so sweet and loveable. I am sure we will get your first haircut soon, too. So many adventures await, and we love you so much little man. Keep doing what you are doing—being wonderful—because it is perfect and all the world needs.
Love you so much,

Monday, August 4, 2014

Trying to learn from my kids, the present, the perfection

Life is beautiful. Really, I try to watch my kids and the certain things they do right now and sear them into my brain because I just don’t want to forget. They are growing up I want to savor everything.   But there is just so many things.  From the obvious things they do, the things they say, the sounds they make, the expressions on their faces.  It’s all beautiful and special, and heartwarming and if ever in my life had I know what joy is all about it, I can define it by special moments with my kids. And really, all the moments are special.

I definitely don’t deserve any parent of the year awards or anything here, but I've been surprising myself with myself lately and taking the time to notice. Honestly, we have had some crazy busy weekends this month… non-stop on the go doing things with friends, going places, getting things done… nonstop. Sometimes reducing nap durations or eliminating them completely and going to bed later than normal. And even in the tough situations with tired-emotional kids, the way I have been able to maintain my composure and talk with them through it has surprised me. My knee jerk reaction I would have thought, would be simply anger and snap back in firmness to get to bed. But quite the contrary, I have been able to bring myself to meet them where they are emotionally and walk with them to where I think they need to be…. Usually in bed sleeping. Like the last two nights, Nick hasn’t been tired when we put him to bed 45min-hour after usual bed time, so he has found ways to come get us to stay up a little later; Needs more water, one more kiss from mommy, he bumped his head, he needs covers, or simply crying. This is quintessential toddler; how many ways to can I prolong bedtime? Last night as much as I wanted to get in the shower myself and get myself ready for work today, I was able to rationalize with him somehow sleeping. I don’t know how I it.  I guess my unconscious did it, because kids are the biggest readers of the unconscious space within us. And last night it was calm and loving. And patient—and he got it right away and went to bed. And need I say the best part of it? When he asked for a hug and a kiss. And then one more hug/kiss. And one more kiss. Ugh. It is so darn sweet I think my stomach hurts with all the love.

Some days, some hours, some moments are hard.  But as much as I feel differently and view each breakdown from a different perspective then my kids, it is their right to have feelings, to work their ways through it, and to feel whatever is it they are feeling.  That  is how they gain wisdom, right? From truly feeling and understanding what they are feeling… and then moving on. Because that is the essence of what children do right? They are fully present in the moment, feeling and experience what is happening right then and now. Something an adult tended to get blinded by and jaded, it’s the present moment.  To know all we really have it now. The past is gone and we are not in the future, all we have is now. And all we can do is embrace the moment because it is exactly as it should be.  Every situation has arisen for a reason and it is to teach us something. From a simple lesson to a toddler like when your brother takes ‘your’ toy to teach you something. For the parent who watches the breakdown. Really, it is our children who are our greatest teachers.  They are the ones that remind us to let go on control, to fully feel each moment, and live  life with openness.  I am not perfect and in those moments where I do lose my patience, it’s up to me to learn from them and in like fashion they will see that is ok, everything will be ok. I don’t need to be infallible. I just need to be me, right now, in this moment, fully embracing what is because it, too, is fleeting.  But it is perfect  and it is exactly how it should be.

So yes, back to where I started,  I so wish I could take some of those moments and put them in a bottle so I can open them up and re-live the perfection that they are. SO I guess that is why I want to blog about it. So I can re-read it and remember.  I want to remember Nick sitting next to me and Matt at dinner last night just randomly asking for a hug and kiss while he ate his Indian food.  I want to remember the way he can look at us with one eye brow up in confusion and scrunch his little forehead? I want to remember that he asks to water the garden every night.  That is always wants to climb up when he gets in the car and then have the door lock down. Or that he carries a tune with him everywhere he goes, and he will have no problem breaking out into dance at a moment's notice. And Chris—so many things about babyhood are so fleeting. His smile is constantly changing, he has 5 teeth now and a 6th one is almost there. The inquisitive looks, the longing stares, the way he folds his legs over one another like his brother used to when he is sitting down, his need to be a part of everything, his crazy hair and how it looks in the morning all tossed and tattered, his breathy giggle that is all inhaled, the way he snuggles in your arms, or bounces to music… I can't name it all.

I am just so thankful to have these remarkable kids. And even more thankful to be able to see how remarkable they are. And to have a husband that is wonderful and be a part of this family that I think I could have only dreamed of.  I think back to how adventuresome our weekends have been this month, we’ve done so much I can barely remember all that we do. Like this past weekend; on Friday night after work we went out to dinner then to the st. johns festival together—rode rides, ate funnel cake, got a balloon animal, walked around putting tickets in theme baskets. Saturday we got up, went to kings island and rode rides, had lunch and went to the radio control air show with two cousins, then drove to west side to get burgers and steaks, then grilled out. Sunday we got up, went to the park and grocery then kings island to see the dinosaurs and ride rides, went out to dinner… every minute was filled. And I can't tell you how many times Matt and I looked at each other and said… wow, can you believe how amazing these kids are?! I am grateful. I am blessed.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Dear Christopher- Month 8

Dear Beautiful bouncing baby boy Chris,

I cant believe you are 8 months already! Where does the time pass? You still have your shining blue eyes and your irresistible baby smile that melts hearts near and far.  And your 4-tooth smile is priceless. You cut your two top teeth this month and it was nothing short of dramatic for everybody. Those are two big teeth and I am only imaging how painful it must have been. I had to drill between them last month at the dentist and it was AWE-ful. Even though the drilling only took place for less than 20 seconds, it was the most pain of any dental work yet. I guess you could say we were in solidarity for a brief moment.  Bring on more teeth in your mouth, I hope those wont be so bad.

You are still topping the charts with your squeezable belly and thighs. Although I think the growth width-wise has slowed because you haven't really changed clothing sizes in a while. You are on the cusp of being completely mobile... right now you can move backward, reach and push off things, and you can rock back and forth in the crawling position. It is only a matter of days before you get one of those legs out from behind you and you are off. I have a sneaking suspicion once you realize you can get yourself anywhere you want, you will be absolutely everywhere. YOu are incredibly inquisitive and always wanting to know what's happening. Especially in your brother's world. I hope my life doesn't get insanely difficult once you are on the move. But I am staying optimistic.

Your eating habits have definitely changes, and I believe you are already starting to ween. Although I cant say you eat a whole lot in general anymore. You have been very open to trying new foods I have made for you, but usually you don't eat more than 2 or 3 oz at a time. Sometimes barely one. You LOVE to MumMum Risk Rusks, you kick and reach as soon as you see one. If those had any nutritional value whatsoever I might be inclines to make a whole meal out of them, but unfortunately I think there is literally NOTHING to them. But I am glad I know there is something that you can pull you out of the dumps when I am in a pinch.

Speaking of being in a pinch, I would definitely call you a mama's boy! YOU LOVE it when I hold you. You hate it when I leave the room, no less even put you down for a millisecond.  You bring on the full service water works and as soon as I pick you up it's like I hit the 'stop' button instantaneously.  Quite remarkable actually. But I am trying to even savor that, it's only a few years when you will think I am the lame mom and wont want any part of me I guess.

Mommy and Daddy both love whatever comes out of your mouth. You have always been vocal... right now our favorite it "a-duah'. And it is absolutely hilarious. A-duah-aduah a-duah... you are falling off the bed? A-duah. You need help? A-duah. ,,,, um. a-duah. Duah, ha ha,. Cant get enough.

We fall more in love with you every day. We had a great month of july with fun trips to Put-In-Bay, visits with your Aunt Dena, grad parties, cook-outs, swimming, all kinds of good stuff. Summer is such a great time of year. And I am so glad you are in our lives. We love you like crazy little boy. August is certain to be an adventure.

Love you lots,

Monday, June 30, 2014

I really love my boys

Being a Mommy of my two boys is the best job and privilege in the entire world.  I always tell myself to stop for a second to admire all the wonderful things about them at this age…. And I know there are just countless things, but I seriously just cannot believe how freakin awesome those two boys are. And how there isn’t a single day that goes by that they both don't out do themselves with their incredibleness, sweetness, adventurousness, intelligence and skill.  So since I can never capture it all, here is just a few of my favorite things about them from this weekend. (in no particular order)

-You always want to dance…. No matter where you are. You just want to get up and just move all those limbs and shake it and it cannot be any cuter.  Or hilarious.
- Like any happy person you wander around this world always carrying a tune. Sittin in the backseat, playing with the train, or just straight up wanting me to harmonize with you—you got a song in your back pocket all the time.
- Your endless hugs and kisses. And no hug is without a kiss to follow it up.
- You have the memory of elephant. Really you remember EVERYTHING. And we always underestimate what you know, and you can always put 2 and 2 together.
- You are adventurous and curious, yet cautious and mindful of your own body and others. Really, you amaze me for a two year old.
- Watching you play with your friends and cousins. Like this weekend as you ran back and forth with your friend Gus throwing rocks in the pond laughing and having the best time ever. You are quintessential

-The way you gaze into our eyes with this looks like “ WOW, you are really here, how can I possibly be this lucky.” I always think you have such an old soul, you are so full of love
-How squeezable you are, and huggable and kissable.
-Your haptic nature and your ability to explore the world around you. The way you reach and handle almost everything just seems so advanced, it amazed me watching you in action.
-How content you are in general… as long as someone is with you. Life is pretty darn good.
-Your love for your brother, you are enamored by him and  can.not.get.enough.
-You can practically feed yourself, you can pull the spoon into your mouth, grab and eat almost on your own. How it is possible and you are only 7 months

Friday, June 13, 2014

Dear Nick- Month 30

Dearest Nick--

I cant believe we just past your half birthday and you are two and a half years old! Wow! And what a beautiful boy you are blossoming into.  You have such a sweet demeanor and energy about you, it's a joy to be around you and watch you grow.

I don't know where to start except to say that you certainly are one smart cookie. People always comment to me about how clear your speech is. And your vocabulary is growing so quickly. You converse now and seem to really love to talk. And sing!! I catch you singing in the backseat almost everyday and it's incredibly beautiful!  You sing even when there isn't music on,  any old song really even if you don't know all the words. 

You love to be outside and help water the garden. You LOVE to go to kings island and ride the Kite Eating Tree. And the roller coaster. AND the beetle bugs. AND the bumpy cars. You love to be out and you love a thrill. I love to watch you, too. You always want to be a part of things, and want people to enjoy whatever is it we are doing with you. And you are so very social. You can pick up and play with the neighbor girls, your friends at school, and any of your cousins at the drop of a hat.  My biggest hope is you continue to grow into your self confidence and your own person, because the person you are is amazing.

We still have a ways to go with potty training, but I am hopefully we will get there in due time.  We must try to focus on postives and enjoy this summer I have with you both because I love this time of a year. You LOVE to be around your brother and you are always helping him. Bringing him toys, helping to feed him, and even comforting him when he cries by stroking his hair and telling him 'its ok.' I cant wait to see the friendship that blossoms between you two.

I cant wait to see what he next six months will bring, I am sure you will continue to surprise me and amaze me with the new things you can do and say.,  Thank you for being on sweet and loving little boy- you light up my day every day. And I cant get enough of your hugs and kisses.  I love you so incredibly much--

Monday, June 9, 2014

Dear Chris- Month 6.5

Dear Christopher (Robin—as I sometimes can't help myself),

Happy Half Birthday little buddy!! I cannot believe you are almost half way through babyhood, time just flies by! You are really growing into your own personality—and your size!! Still tipping the charts in the 90th percentile for height and 95% for weight. You impress me with your 22 lbs of adorable cuteness and incredible smiles. Speaking of smiles, on May 15th you broke your first tooth. So long toothless smiles, now here we are a six and half months and you have two adorable little bottom teeth. And I know more are shortly behind it since you chew your hands and drool like crazy.

The last month has not been the most healthy as we have been in and out of the doctor’s office quite a few times.  Lots of colds, lots of coughing and sneezing, fevers, ear infections, pink eye, allergies, the works.  You were sent home from daycare for a double ear infection and pink eye too just a week before we realized you were insanely allergic to so  wool mattress pad we moved over to another bed that you lost hours of sleeping from coughing and sneezing. You poor little guy! And the amoxicillin gave you diarrhea too!  Luckily you worked through all of that and here we stand, infection free ears and daddy was able to figure out what has causes you sneeze and cough so much.   Summer is only just beginning so I am hoping we are through some of the worst of it.

We started solid foods with you in the  last few weeks and I must say you want NOTHING to do with actual food. I have tried rice cereal, rice cereal with bananas, plain bananas, apples, carrots and rutabaga and nothing has given you slighted bit of interest. You turn your head, back away and yell at me to get it away. I hope the next month is more successful than the last.  You will get it eventually I know.

Your grandpa bob always says six months is a turning point for babies when they really get interactive and he has been right with all of his grandchildren. You have always been a cuddler, but I must say  you have eyes into your soul.  Mimi always says you melt her heart when she sees how happy you get when she walks into a room.  But really you are the one lighting it.  You have this gaze that can fill any heart with joy and love.  You have such a calm and laid back personality about you, and you love to be an observer. The happiest place for you is in someone’s arms surrounded by your brother and cousins so you can watch them dance and play.  You, too, love music and the sound of your brothers voice makes of all us smile.  You even talk and sing right back, you are much more vocal at a young age than Nick ever was and your babbles feel like they come from the heavens.

Dexterity must run in our family because you love to grab and touch things just like your brother. But of you have a very strong haptic nature and want to feel everything. You explore with your hands (and so far- not your mouth – thank gosh!) You are actually very accurate too with how well you can reach for things, grab  them and maneuver them around.  It’s always fascinating to watch you,  I wonder what you will be when you grow up.

The last month has been another great joy for all of us as we have had so much fun at family weddings, grill outs at our house, trips to kings island,  swimming with your brother at the pool, and so much more. I can't wait to see what the summer has in store for all of us. Thank you for being so completely adorable and lovable. We are the luckiest parents in the world.  We love you more than you  know! Happy half birthday!


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Dear Chris- month 5.5

Dear Christopher-- 

It's almost you half birthday- where has the time gone? I seem like a broken record saying that, but babyhood really does go by too fast.   You are right on the mark when it comes to hitting all your milestones- if not early.  You can sit up on your own pretty well, daddy calls you a level 1 sitter because sometimes if you turn your head you lose your balance and you tumble over. But in usual Chris fashion, you just go with the flow. In the next week you will be sitting by yourself almost completely unassisted. You have a strong core, you’ve always seem to be able to prop yourself up and hold position that appear to take a lot of strength. You love to be on your belly and generally speaking if we lay you down on your back it is just a matter of seconds before you are on your belly exploring what is in front of you.

You are fascinated by hands and just like your big brother, you have a very haptic nature.   You grab and examine everything we hand you. Keeping it in your hands for more than a minute or two can be a challenge, but you reach for it when your drop it now.   You also respond when we talk to you and you turn to look at us when we talk.  You are very alert and responsive, and so quick to smile when we see you.  Your smile melts hearts and I simply cannot get enough it.

Recently we have tried offering you some oats cereal since you are getting old enough to start solid foods now. But you wanted to no part of it. You don’t have any teeth yet, and really you aren’t showing many signs of teething yet either.  In the next few weeks maybe we will do some more experiments with cereal and other foods. You go to the doctor at the end of the month and I am sure she will give us the green light to start all kinds of stuff with you.  I can't wait to watch you explore it all. And I am sure Nick will love helping you. He loves you so much and always wants to share and assist you when you are upset.  He hugs and kisses you all the time, and judging by how you respond to him—you absolutely cannot get enough of him either. I can't wait to watch you both grow into such good friends.

I don’t know if it runs in the family, but both of my boys have been big poopers. I don’t know if it’s the diapers, but blowouts are a weekly (sometimes daily occurrence) for us. How does it happen? And how is it possible you can be so unphased by  it!?! You have a go-with-the-flow demeanor about you, you can be covered in poop and when we go to pull off your clothes you just smile and carry on like it’s no big deal.   Babyhood is so carefree, and you personify it perfectly.   You are so loving and lovable, I could smuggle and gaze into your beautiful blue eyes and brighten up the darkest of days.
This month you have been out with us on fun trips to Kings island, weddings, clam bakes, barbeques, family outings and been a joy though all of it. Can't wait for the weather to get even warmed and get you in the pool and do more fun outdoor stuff with your big brother.  So much to look forward too! Thank you for being such a beautiful and adorable little soul—inside and out. You are addictive and I am so thankful you bring so much joy into our lives. Can't wait to see what is in store for us next month.

Love you to the moon and back little peanut.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Dear Chris (month 4.5)

My Dearest Christopher--

You are my little sunshine! I don't think I have ever met a happier baby than you (well, during the daylight hours). You are so full of life and so vibrant.... you smile just looking at us. And your love for your older brother is beyond words. I cant imagine you needing anything else in this world besides your brother on sad day because he seems to brighten your world any minute of the day. And I think the feeling is reciprocated, he seems to do anything for you and without pause will run to you and give you a kiss, or a hug, or just a pat if you need it.

You rolled over for me already which is amazing considering you are in the 90% percentile for your size. You definitely feel big at over 18lbs, but boy are your cheeks still completely and utterly adorable. You can grab and reach for things now, which makes the play mat and other rattles and toys accumulated even more interesting to you now. You can also stand up and play in your jumperoo and your johnny jump up we have hanging in our doorway. This will make preparing meals a lot easier now if you don't need to be held all the time. You are certainly attached to me-- but I cant blame you, I cant stand to be away from you either. I think this might play into some rough bed time routines right now (or lack there of)... but we'll get there.

You seem to be thriving at daycare and your brother loves to help with your drop off by putting your bottles away. I love to see you at the end of the day because your smiles are ever present.  You have always loved your baths and are pretty easy going in general. You take after your brother in the BM department though, blowouts and frequent outfit changes are a regular occurrence for us.  But in standard form you just go with the flow no matter what. This has made the last  four plus months with you so easy going,... from taking you to family events, bday parties, playdates, neighbors houses, you are a happy baby and love to be held no matter who is it and I love that about you.

I cant wait for the warmer weather and outside fun you will have this summer with Nick. I love our new little family of four and you have brought more happiness into this family than you will ever know. I just love you so much and enjoy every minute watching you grow. Thank you for being you, I love you so much little one. Cant wait to see what next month brings.


Friday, March 7, 2014

Dear Christopher- Month 3 (.5)

Dear Christopher--

Welcome to this world! The last three plus month with you have been nothing shy of perfection.   You arrived on a sunny afternoon and your disposition couldn't be any sunnier. Unlike your older brother, you have been so vocal and animated from the very beginning. You have been talking to us since you saw us, and no-- not just crying-- actually making all kinds of sounds. You always have a lot to say! And we LOVE to listen.   You are pretty easy going in general, too. You will watch your big brother run around the house for hours on end and be happy as a clam doing so. He keeps you quite entertained. You definitely love him because no matter where he goes you want to see what he is doing. That love in reciprocal because Nick will run to you when he sees you sitting in the swing and start to cry, he will rock you and start up the music. Or bring you a pacifer if he thinks that will help. He has also noticed how much you love fans so he will run to turn it on in whatever room you may be and will watch it with you right by your side.  I cant wait to see you two grow up together, that brotherly love is so sweet and touches my heart to the core.

You are definitely one of the cutest and chubbiest little guys I've ever seen. Those cheeks of your are so amazing and incredibly irresistible. Your smile is contagious, and you were smiling at us earlier than your brother did. I got my first smile on January 1st (almost 6 weeks to the day) but daddy swears he saw some earlier. And i believe him, you smile at us and all we have to do is look at you. You are laughing now too and it's the best thing in the whole world.  You are ticklish too, we just rub that chubby little tummy and a gasp of laughter comes out.  We love your chubby-ness, your doctor says you are already in the 90th percentile for your weight. You've been in 6  month clothes for weeks now.  I bet you are going to be tall like your daddy. You are beautiful and perfect and I could just sit and stare at how adorable you are all day long.

You also are getting stronger by the day. You seem less bothered by tummy time, and you already have a strong neck and back. YOu can almost push yourself over in both directions, I could see that happening any day now too. Those fine motor skills are also progressing quickly too, just this week when i was watching you on your jungle  play mat I saw you reach out and grab one of those monkeys hanging down in front of you.

It's crazy how quick you grow and change when you are this small. Everyone seems to think you will have teeth early since you are already drooling a lot. But I dont see any signs of it right now.  You definitely take after your brother in how well you can fill a diaper-- i dont know how such little people can generate such large poops but ive moved you up a size in diapers this week because you need more room in those things.  I hope your sleep habits get better but so far you still do give us some full nights of sleep.  My favorite part about you is how happy you wake up and the smile you give us when you open your eyes and see us is better than anything in this world. The loving looks and how you can look so deep into our eyes, I swear you have an old soul. You are such an amazing little baby and I cant seem to get enough of you.

This month I went back to work and I miss you so much during the day. You seem to be doing alright and you take a bottle like a champ considering you didn't have any almost the entire first three months of your life. I miss being home with you boys while I am at work, but aleast the weather is starting to break and we have a lot of outdoor spring activities to look forward to with your brother while I am home.  I love you sweet little baby, cant wait to see what's in store for us in your fourth month. 

We love you so much,

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Dear Nick

Dear Nicholas,

You have changed so much I cant keep up with everything. And it scares me that i am missing things contantly-- the new words you are learning, your little nuances, your personality, your emotions, the little things that make you, you. Uniquely you, and just simply perfect just the way you are. It seems like you learn multiple words every day, you even put two words together now like "daddy work" and my favorite is when you say thank you- 'tank oo" ugh, just replaying it in my head makes my heart sing. YOu have really taken to a couple blankets ( you called it 'ee') and your stuffed mickey mouse ('mouse') and this other elephant that i am not sure how you refer to him. YOu pretty much drag them everywhere. YOu need them all in your hands when you get up in the morning, when reading your books at night, when going to bed. All the stuff in your hands you can barely see over it all, and it's ridiculously cute.

We just ordered your first big boy bed-- it should be delivered in the next couple weeks and you will make another big transition to a new room and a NEW bed. I hope you are excited as we are. We need to get a bookshelf in there asap to get all your books in there and we will have a new setting for bed time. We should also be finishing up the basement in the next few weeks so you can have a bigger-- better area for all your toys and games. Lots to look forward to those changes.

Your personality of ever apparent in everything you do. Yes, you do have some very typical tantrums that are unavoible for your age-- like those of frustrations when you cant do something, or when you absolutely DO NOT want to sit in a high chair, or at dinner time when you absolutely DO not want to eat. But on the positive side, somtimes when you are frustrated becaus we dont understand you-- just saying 'please' gets you exactly what you need (most of the time). Generally you are easy going and very social. So social that you say HI to pretty much anyone you pass ANYWHERE you are.... this includes walking up to get communion at church. Good thing you are unbelievably cute.

You have a big heart and you LOVE babies. In fact, so much so that you will stop in your tracks to look and touch one if you see one. We went to a baptism this past weekend and you didnt need any other entertainment besides the cute little baby getting a 'bath.' And then you held his hand afterward and wouldnt let go. The little things you do just make me want to squeeze you until you pop. I have a feeling that this is a good sign that you will be an EXCELLENT big brother in just a few short months. I know you will be a helper to mommy because you already are.

This has been one great summer since you are such a free spirit. It's been such a joy taking you to amusement parks, family parties, cookouts, pools, parks, playdates,vacations, weddings and more. Your love of music continues to amaze us, and it's simply adorable to watch you break out into dance albiet in the car, in our living room, or in the center of 40 people at my best friends wedding. That was one of the best memories was watching you dancing and having the time of your life to the live band at Caroline's wedding. Everyone there was drawn to you by your cuteness-- you spent the entire evening on the dance floor! Right now, you cant get enough of the song Ants go Marching One by One... i am pretty sur eyou have listened to it atleast 1,200 times in the last week. And you keep wanting it.. "MARCH!!" Fortunately you are so polite and sweet when you ask. How could we say no? And how can we not lovve watching you actually march around the living room in cirlces for an endless amount of time.

I am also amazed by your wide taste palatte. YOu genunely love to eat fruit and veggies.. AND I LOVE IT TOO!! You expecially love peaches now (good thing they taste amazing this time of year!) and apple-- specially apple sauce "sauce." But you will also eat any berry, melon, or banana that comes your way. YOu even like pretty much any citris fruits too-- lemons, limes, oranges. You would probably like grapefruits, too, if we kept them on hand except your mommy and daddy absolutely hate them. But ill buy some just for you.

Boy do i miss you when i have to go to work. Mondays and tuesdays are expecially hard becuase of all the time i get to spend the days before. I think about your non-stop.... and i could pretty much watch you interact with the world and do nothing else for the rest of my time and be the happiest person on earth. You are beautiful both inside and out, and it really shows in everything you do. I mean it when i say i cant get enough you... you make my days happier just by getting to be wih you. And the hugs and kisses you freely give out certainly only make it even better. You love to snuggle, you

Saturday, January 18, 2014

My Snow Globe

So it's 8:15am on a January morning and both of my sweet boys are sleeping upstairs. It's a Saturday and so my husband is also sleeping. I am awake, sipping my coffee from the office looking out the window to a white front yard and snow falling in light little flakes like a scene from a movie.  The kind of snow hat is beautiful (and not dangerous to ride out in since we have plans in just a couple hours to meet friends).  I sit here this morning, and the past few mornings, thinking about how happy I am. I have this overwhelming sense of contentment and joy... I cant say it's something I've never felt, but honestly it's a feeling I have had for this  long a time. 

I have to admit when Chris was born just 8 weeks ago I felt the gambit of emotions; fear, happiness, tiredness, stress, pain... you name it, I felt it.  Now that I have a few weeks with both of them I am learning that the love I have for my entire family is to profound and so deep I don't need anything else in this world. Every day is a snow day for us these days that I am not at a work... and we don't even need snow. It feels like that  because I wake up with hope and excitement, I cant wait to see how the day will unfold.  I love to see what my boys will surprise me with today, what will they that do that will make me laugh, what new thing will they do, what is going to come next. I am falling even more in love with them each day, and watching Nick interact with his baby brother melts my heart into a thousand pieces every time. From the kisses in the morning, to bringing me his 'blanket's aka burp clothes wherever we go, and patting him on the belly when he is crying, I don't even know where to stop.  He has surprised me and exceeded beyond expectation how mature, caring, and selfless he is. And he is only two!! He understands the concepts of sharing, too. He lets Chris hold his favorite thing in the world when he is upset-- his Mickey.  And he does love mickey because he brings him everywhere he goes, feeds him, bathes him, dances with him, sleeps with him, everything. It's adorable and precious. And memories of him I never want to let go of.

Everything about being home with my kids makes me happy. Yes, there are hard moments... but they are just that. Moments. fleeting and manageable because they are just that, moments.  It's the rest of the day that makes me happy.   Life is surprisingly easy, too. I get lots of stuff done because nick is so happy just to be in the same room with me. And to feel included.  I couldn't ask for a better kid, he can explore and play anywhere as long as I am with him and honestly, I wouldn't want him anywhere else. I love it when he is with me... he is my little grown up, because sometimes I cant believe all the things he can do and help me with.. and understand at such a small age.  This quality time together is important for both of us.  And I wish it never has to end.

I am going back to work in about a month and my heart hurts all over thinking about it. But right now I am sitting here in the office looking at the little snow globe I am in right now and feeling so happy. In a snow globe everything looks perfect and you imagine what it would be like from the outside. But this snow globe on the inside really is perfect. I have hit the jack pot with such a loving husband and two beautiful children, and a wonderful support network all around me.  Thank you, God.