Monday, June 30, 2008

Letter to My 8 Month Old


If you wonder why nearly every month I write you this letter and the pictures are of you sleeping - try to remember that the only time I have to sit down and work on it is when you are down for a nap!  The rest of my day is spent chasing you all over the house because you are rarely in one place for long.

I cannot believe that you are already this old.  Time has been flying by since you arrived, and as every month passes I look back, sometimes missing that tiny baby you once were, while at the same time being excited by how far you have come in such a short time. It's a blast and you seem more and more like a little boy than a baby every day. You are constantly learning something new, and challenging us with something new.  You help us see the world from a different angle, and you make us so happy.   Your Papa is especially excited by your rough-and-tumble-ness, and I am enamored with your smile and gregarious personality. 

Your schedule is very busy most weeks.  We make lots of time for play with your baby friends, library programs, walks around the neighborhood, trips to the beach, going to the dog park with Nico, and now spending a couple of days at work with me.  We went to your second concert with Uncle Kenny, Billy Joel, and you danced and smiled and ate cereal before passing out to sleep in the Inka.  You adapt well to new situations, and you're always willing to explore a new place.  Now when we get together with the other babies, rather than just laying there staring off into space - you are up and about and crawling all over each other!  It's a lot of fun to watch you interact and learn how to play, though your favorite activities so far seem to be pulling hair, grabbing cheeks, and stealing toys!  You are seriously fascinated with faces.

You've managed to cut 4 teeth in the latter half of the month - three on the bottom and one on top, with 2 more visible through your gums, and nearing emergence.  You also got your first virus.  It was pretty miserable, and we hated seeing your spirit dampened, but you've pulled through and are feeling better everyday.  

You are so mobile now - moving from room to room with ease, pulling up on anything within your reach, and getting onto anything not nailed down.  You love to crawl up and over us when we are cuddling in bed, over the dog, and onto the bottom book shelves.  You are so pleased with yourself when you get up on your feet, the fact that you haven't figured out how to get down is still pretty frustrating for you - but we are working on showing you how to do it yourself all the time.  

It is so much fun to play with you as you get older,  we laugh and act silly as much as possible every day.  Papa and I often look at each other and exclaim how much we love you!  Your cuteness is irresistible, and your smile could charm the pants off of anyone.  You are such a happy baby, so easy going, active, perfect in every way.  

We love you til we're nearly bursting, it just oozes out of us.  I never knew it was possible to love someone as much as I love you.  You are the center of our world.  I wake up every morning looking forward to seeing your smiling face, and no matter how little sleep I've had or how early you decide to get up I can't be anything but happy to start another day with you in my life.  

I love you little man, always and forever,

Papa's Lullaby for Julian:

J is for Julian, the boy who we love
U is for Umbrella, rain from above
L is for Love, Family and Friends
I is for Ice Cream, it's summer time again
A is for Apples, doctor away
N is for November, Happy Birthday!


Thanks to a call with an awesome suggestion from Noni this afternoon, Jules is now asleep - upright in his stroller - in our bedroom in front of the humidifier and the sound machine.  Hopefully he will stay that way long enough to get a good nap, and then wake up without all the gunk in his nose and chest.  Genius I say.  Added bonus:  I didn't hear any snot rasping through his passageways last time I checked on him, and I will take a peaceful sleeping baby over a tired and sad one any day!

Sunday, June 29, 2008


My boys are sick and it really stinks.  Pete has a terrible cough that wracks his body day and night, and poor little Jules has been crying for two days now - coughing, sneezing, high fever, snot, unable to breath, unable to sleep, unable to eat because he can't breath.  Basically he is miserable, and it is so hard not to be able to do anything to help him feel better.  I keep hoping for him to start getting better rather than worse, but we haven't hit that point in the illness yet.  He mostly sleeps on me during the day so I can prop him up to breath well, and all night long he thrashes and cries with us.  We're attacking him with a cold mist humidifier, baby vicks, saline and a snot sucker (which he hates) to help him breath so he can at least nurse, and tylenol for the fever because he is so damn hot.  

Here they are late at night, Jules refused to sleep - he only wanted to be with me or his Papa:

Saturday, June 28, 2008

First Fever

We just got back from the pediatrician, and after thorough inspection and a white blood count test, it seems Jules has a virus of some sort.  Luckily it doesn't seem like croup or ear infections (both of which some baby friends have), and with some rest, hydration, and time he should be feeling better in a few days.

So Jules slept all through the night until about 4:45AM, highly unusual, especially with all the teething going on lately.  I went to get him to bring him to bed to nurse, and noticed that he was pretty hot.  Took his temperature, and it came back around 103.  Yikes.  Tried to get ahold of Pete (who is working the mid-shift, 10:30PM - 6:30 AM), no answer.  Called the nurse line at the pediatrician, was told to dose him with tylenol for anything over 102, and wait for worsening symptoms before coming in.

The bottom three teeth have broken through almost completely in the last few days, but the top two are really taking their time.  You can see everyday his gums are a little more swollen, and they are a little close to the surface.  So maybe he's managed to snag himself a teething fever since there seem to be no other symptoms.

Either way, he's in our bed sleeping now, Pete should be home in an hour, and I'm dreaming of having my own espresso machine.  

Monday, June 23, 2008

Friends for Life

Lately all the moms and babies have been able to make it to Mama Chat on Mondays - and it's been a blast!  There is nothing like watching 5 babies be wild and crazy all over the place.  Here are some photo highlights:

What a smile!

Julian steals James's rattle.

Ryan and James check out Julians toys.


Ryan is so proud of her skillz!

Left to right in birth order: Cate, Jules, Ryan, Canaan, and James

Jules is attempting to steal Ryan's paci.  Not pictured, he succeeds.

Jules and Ryan, Best Buds for Life

Lean Back

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Concert #2: Billy Joel

Someone likes his Uncle Kenny, can you tell?


We had a blast at the Billy Joel concert last night, though it was a little more raucous than his last one!  He ate tons of cereal and chewed on apple slices while we waited for things to get going, then he vacillated between dancing like a wild man and passing out until the end of the concert.  As usual he spent the majority of his time cheesing at everyone sitting around us, and wooing all the ladies - he really is irresistible!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Self Feeding

We're starting to offer some foods that Jules can feed himself.  Today it was peach sections and banana rolled in wheat germ to keep them from getting too slippery.  His pincher grasp is not very developed so when he dropped them he needed help getting them back in his hands, but taking bites were no challenge at all!

He also has a new skill: if you say "Kisses" to him, he'll reach out with both hands, take your face, and plant a wet one, or 5, on you with a big slobbery open mouth!  It is absolutely the cutest thing ever.  We've been saying "Kisses" to him since he was tiny when we go in to kiss him, and it just clicked recently that he could give them back.  I can't help but encourage it all the time!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Standing Rocks

3 Bottom Teeth Poking Through!

Click to enlarge, and you should be able to see a shimmer of 3 tiny tooth buds busting through. He's getting the bottom middle two and one to the left.


It's so hard to get three boys to pose together!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

So Proud!

(blowing raspberries and standing - awesome!)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Checking in for a Check-Up

Wow it's hot out! We've been at nearly 100 degrees for the last week, and it's really out a damper on our outdoor activities.  Usually we walk all over the neighborhood while Papa is at work, but lately it's just not been worth the sweat-fest to head out before 7PM.  I'm hoping this heat wave breaks soon, and we're definitely going to need to head to the beach again this weekend to cool off.  

Today was Julians 6 month check up, a little late, but our new doctors office is a very busy one so it was hard to get squeezed in for an appointment.  At 7 and 1/4 months Julian weighed in at 22lb 10 oz  and 28 1/2 inches - up 6 oz from his visit last month.  This kid shows no signs of giving up on this whole growing thing.  

Dr.  Meredith is awesome, and spent a ton of time with us going over all of his developmental milestones, foods he can eat, starting a sippy cup, his super sensitive rashy skin, etc.  Then he got two shots, which is definitely not his favorite part, but the new nurse was so lightening fast it was over in a flash.  We're slowing down his vaccinations, using the Dr. Sears delayed schedule, so instead of going in every 3 months and getting 3 or 4 shots, we're going to go in once a month for 2.  That way we limit the mercury, aluminum and other toxins going into his body at one time.  Luckily these new doctors are all very pro-breastfeeding so I was able to nurse right after to comfort him.

He's definitely a little ahead of the curve with all of the crawling and pulling up he is doing now, and I'm sure he'll be walking before a year at this rate, but he's not doing much babbling.  She said that was normal, usually that kicks in about 9 months, but I think he's so focused on all the physical stuff he just doesn't have time to sit and talk! He just mostly laughs and shrieks at this point, but he gets quite the kick out of it.

Friday, June 6, 2008

I've Been Busy Today!

Um Yea, It Wasn't a Fluke

Note: The bonk sounds worse on video than it was, and he didn't hit his head on anything - just fell over kinda hard.

Early Morning Park Time

This morning we headed out to the park super early with Miss Stella for some swing and slide time.  It's been in the 90's around here so we wanted to try and beat the heat.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

More Firsts!

At just over 7 months old, Jules is officially busting out his first tooth.  Lower left, front and center, to be exact.  It started out with just a little corner poking through, but today about half of it is visible moving its way up.  I almost missed it completely,  as he hasn't been extra fussy or rashy, or anything like that.  In fact he's been in excellent spirits lately.

Another first, that happened today, is more pulling up!  I brought out a basket of toys from the shelving unit in the living room, and before I knew it he was pulling himself up to kneeling next to it!  I couldn't believe it, I really thought that the pulling up in the crib the other day was just a fluke, but oh how wrong I was. 

And today he's discovered that he can get to much more of the living room.  The romance novel shelf was a big hit, as was the shelf with my cooking magazine organizers (you can see he tried to climb into that one!)  He's not yet figured out how to follow me down the hallway, but I'm sure by the end of next week that will be old hat.

He also love to "dance".  Anytime he hears music, or if I start to sing a song, he will start to sway back and forth.  He could be on his belly, sitting, or standing, and he still gets swaying like crazy.  This is especially popular at Babygarten, where he insists on standing to dance for the majority of the program.  Here you can see him rocking out to The Strokes while waiting for dinner in the kitchen.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Not What I Was Expecting

I put Jules down for his 2nd nap of the day, and left him to work it out on his own as usual - he's really good at it.  But when I peeked in on him to see how it was going, this is what I found!:

Boy was I shocked!  I ran to grab Pete so he could see too, and then we both shook our heads.  It's all over now!  He's going to be climbing the bookcases before we know it.  I guess all that crawling has been building up his muscles.  I layed him back down, and then went back 10 minutes later to find this:

Do you think he has enough of his loveys?

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Letter To My Seven Month Old, and My 100th Post!

Dear Julian,

This last month has been a very exciting one.  You've had many firsts: sitting, crawling,  an outdoor concert, cloth diapers, and now on the cusp of 7 months a new tooth is starting to bust through.  You've been busy making friends with other babies, and now that you can get around on your own you're into everything.  So far your favorite no-no is the cable cords but we're working on that.  Nico also likes to bring you his toys to play with, and you especially like chewing on his Nyla Bones - but we think that's pretty gross!  

Now that you are crawling, you can get back and forth across the living/dining room all by yourself.  You spend a lot of time chewing on chair and table legs, as well as checking out the carpets, and rocking back and forth on your hands an knees.  You don't like it when you get yourself trapped, and I often hear you hollering after getting stuck underneath something.  Now that your sitting skills are expert, many hours are spent sitting on the floor fling your toys around.  We snagged a Jumperoo off of Craiglist, and it's been a HUGE hit.  Sometimes you bounce into exhaustion, but are unable to stop because you love it so much! We can't leave you alone on the bed anymore, and we need to get your crib lowered so that you won't go plummeting to the ground!

You've started raising your arms to be picked up when you want one of us, and I find this exceptionally adorable.  You laugh the hardest when we give you kisses all over your belly.  And so far Papa is by far the funniest - you love it when he throws you up and down, when he helps you chase the puppy, and when he wrestles with you on the bed.  I can hear your laughter ringing all through the house.  And I'm the one you want when you're sad or tired or fussy.  You like nothing better than to curl up for a quiet minute and a good nurse - just the two of us.  It's moments like those that I dreamed of before you were here.  Our home is so full now, our dinner table is messier, our schedule packed, our living room cluttered - but I embrace every change because life is richer every day with you here.

You're eating tons of things now - and must have two meals a day.  Once I figured that out you started sleeping through the night!  If you've had a nice big dinner you'll easily go down by 8, and often we don't hear from you until morning time.  It's been glorious for your Mama who's been pretty sleep deprived these last 6 months.  You've also been trying lots of new foods: cantaloupe, pretzels, chicken soup (one of your favorites), turkey, tomatoes, pasta, spinach pancakes, potatoes, green beans, hummus, baba ganouj, pita, and on and on!  Most anything I offer is eaten with glee, and often you are banging your hands on your high chair tray for more, or trying to grab the bowl from my hands.  

We celebrated your 7 month birthday with our inaugural trip the beach.  We had a blast, though you were more interested in eating the sand than splashing in the water.  We tried to dip your toes a few times, but you just made biggest frown and refused to go any further.  The water is still pretty chilly so hopefully once it warms up you'll enjoy it more.  We camped out under our new 100SPF umbrella for most of the afternoon, stripped you naked, and let you hang out in the cool breeze out of the sun.  You spent a lot of time chewing on the umbrella pole, and hanging with your Papa and Uncle Kenny.  Naps were taken in my lap, cuddled beneath a towel, and by the time we left the beach you were coated in sunscreen caked with sand in every crevice.  

You're such a big boy now, weighing in at 22lbs, 4 oz - and I look at you with wonder all the time.  How has time flown by so quickly - how can it be that you've already been here for half a year?  You are a delightful little boy, and your personality shows no signs of dampening.  You love life, and it shows in how happy you are every day.  Your Papa and I will do everything we can to foster that, and give you all the love you can stand.

I love you my darling boy,