Monday, January 17, 2011

Shelby Frances at 19 Months

Words she says regularly: mama, dada, and uh uh (which she says any time we try to feed her or fix her hair), yeah, bye bye, BeBe (my mom), mah mah (for my mother-in-law, and pronounced differently than when she is referring to me), Baby (for her baby doll and for our dog, Bailey) Matt (for Uncle Matt), and ah ah (for Aunt Ashlee). Two months ago, the only words she regularly said were mama, dada, and uh uh. Her vocabulary has really increased in the past month and she is particularly drawn to people's names. Harding can't wait to be added to the list of names she says.

Favorite activities: dancing to music (her favorite album is Paul Simon's Graceland), making silly sounds with her mouth, playing peek-a-boo with her "lovie", army-crawling after toys she has thrown, reading books, splashing in the bathtub, snuggling with her favorite people, and pointing at body parts when we say their name.

Favorite toys: Her fish tank that plays music when she puts the three rattle fish inside it (thanks for loaning it cousin Riley, sorry because we will probably never return it) and her piano that MoMo gave her for her first birthday.

Cute things she does: Reaches out to people (even strangers) that she wants to hold her and fusses until they do hold her, sways and reaches up with her right hand to move it to music with a good beat. This is hard to narrow down because pretty much everything she does is adorable.
Things that soothe her when she's upset: Paci, pink lovie, snuggling, people singing to her (especially the song we learned in Kindermusik "Hop Up My Baby")

Favorite foods: yo baby banana and Earth's Best Tender Beef and Spinach baby food (ick), and mashed avocado.
Shelby is the princess of the family and pretty much has everyone wrapped around her little finger. Her older brother adores her and is constantly trying to play with her. He sings to her when she is upset. Shelbs is spunky and sassy and likes to have her way. This "sass" has made things difficult for her physcial, occupational, and speech therapists lately, but I think it will help her with some of the challenges that she faces. She has unmanageable, crazy, curly hair that we are reluctant to cut. Her smile and laughter are infectious and have the power to put anyone in a good mood. We love her so much!

Harding at 4 Years

Favorite foods: pizza, pancakes, anything with peanut butter, chicken nuggets, chicken noodle soup, apples, bananas, dessert

Current Favorite Books: A book of fairy tales he got for his birthday, an illustrated copy of the Hobbit that he got for Christmas, the kids Bible he borrowed from the church library. He is an expert at getting his parents to read him "one more story" before bed and nap. If we want him to go to sleep on time, we have to start the bedtime routine an hour before to incorporate all the reading.

Interests: Ellie (his huge stuffed elephant that he takes almost everywhere), trains, superheros, Toy Story stuff, reading books, singing and dancing, watching t.v. (when he can talk us into letting him), wearing costumes, riding his bike, sledding, hanging out with his friend Derek, and going to his grandparents houses.

Things that make him nervous: loud noises like vacuum cleaners and blenders.

Wants to be at teacher when he grows up (as of last week).

Harding has always had a huge vocabulary and is a listener and a thinker. Trip and I have to be incredibly careful what we say around him, because he often pipes in and asks us about our conversations. He will also shock us with deep, existential questions about death or the meaning of life from time to time. If we tell him to do anything, he wants to know "why"? He often plays independently and has a huge imagination. But he still wants help from us with things like getting dressed. He still will not get out of bed on his own and lies there looking at books or playing with his stuffed animals until we come upstairs to get him in the morning. This comes in handy on weekends when we want to sleep late. Harding is the best big brother that Shelby could ask for. He accompanies her to countless doctor appointments and therapy sessions, tells us if she is doing something she's not supposed to be doing (like chewing a cord or crawling into another room), and announces to us that Shelby is hungry or needs a new diaper or doesn't like the food we are feeding her.

My cautious boy is growing up fast. He has gotten much taller, but hasn't gained any weight so he seems skinny. He has definitely lost all of his toddler pudge. I teared up last week when he walked over to our next door neighbor's house by himself to get a toy he had left there. He asked Trip and I yesterday where he would live when he grew up. We answered truthfully, "I hope not too far away". Harding, you truly are a blessing to us. How did we get so lucky?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Winter Outing

After mastering all the hills in our neighborhood, Trip decided that he and Harding were ready for some bigger sledding. We picked Trip up from work on his lunch break and drove around in the Subaru (which handles beautifully in the snow) until we found this great hill on a golf course. I snapped this picture from the warm car while Trip and H dragged the sled back up the hill after one of their rides. Shelby slept the whole time in her carseat. She doesn't really like the snow anyway.

Monday, January 10, 2011

snow day craftiness

We're right in the middle of a big winter storm here that is affecting much of the southeast. The snow is piling up in Asheville and the ice is forecasted to come in tonight. I think we could potentially be out of school most of this week, which means that we'll very likely be making up this missed time on subsequent Saturdays and over spring break. I'm trying not to think about that though.

We've had a great snowy weekend here with our neighbors. There has been sledding, football watching, and massive amounts of chili and cornbread consuming. Beyond that, I've used any available time when Trip could supervise the kids to go downstairs and work on my quilt. Here is the top almost complete--it just needs another border. Once I get the batting and backing, I can quilt it all together. I'll post pictures of the final product when it is all done (which may be a while).
This productive time at home has made me miss last year when I stayed at home all year with the kids. I don't have much time to dwell on this though. Its back to the grind again soon with my graduate classes starting next week.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Operation Complete

Trip threw a small birthday party for me on December 23rd. Having 20 guests come over was a great motivator for cleaning, organizing, decorating, and putting the final touches on our living room makeover. We hung pictures, cleaned out closets and drawers and Trip installed the quarter round on the edges of the floors. I took pictures because with two small kids and Christmas coming, I knew that the living room would become overrun with toys and life soon. Here is our house looking its best ever.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Great news!

Back in December, I blogged about Shelby's 18-month check up with Dr. Love and mentioned that she has been hovering in the 2nd-3rd weight percentile for the last year. We have gone to a pediatric nutritionist in the past about fattening our girl up and she's been on what I call the "Paula Dean diet" ever since. Everything she eats has extra melted butter or olive oil added to it for extra calories. All her whole milk has a scoop of formula added to it for extra calories and protein. Over Christmas break, Shelby just seemed heavier. Her thighs have been looking thick and her cheeks and belly have plumped up. A month ago, Shelby weighed 19 lbs, 10 oz. When I took Shelby to the doctor's office yesterday for her monthly RSV shot, I was eager to get her on the scale. She weighed in at a whopping 21 lbs, 4.5 oz!!! I was ecstatic! Finally the Paula Dean diet has started to pay off. I made the nurse go plug the updated numbers into the computer and she came back with this lovely printout:
Shelby is now in the 9th-10th percentile range! Sweet! We're still a long way from where she needs to be with feeding, but I'll take this victory. The 9th percentile is a lot less worrisome. I am constantly telling myself (and others) that Shelby is on her own developmental time schedule, but honestly, its nice to see a chart where she is getting towards the "normal" range on something. Thank goodness we just got a Maclaren stroller--21 pounds is a lot to carry around!