Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Nine Months!

This month went by super fast with the move and unpacking and the flu and trying to find our way around town. Somehow Porter is 9 months old now. I remember thinking that 9 months was my favorite stage with Paxton and I'm thinking it is a pretty excellent stage. Porter is much happier now. I think it has a lot to do with how much he's eating now. This kid is king of solids. 
He is still nursing four or five times a day but now he is hitting the solids hard. He usually has a banana and some oatmeal for breakfast, puffs or Cheerios for a snack, a solid and some crackers for lunch, more puffs in the afternoon and maybe a yogurt and then he eats what we eat for dinner. He hasn't tried a food he hasn't loved. He shoves everything into his mouth with reckless abandon. Most nights at dinner, he eats more than Paxton does. 
He still isn't crawling even though he spends at least 60% of his floor time in the crawling position. He has invented his own little method for getting around. He usually starts sitting up, then lunges towards what he wants in the crawling position. Then he sits back up, readjusts and lunges again. I don't know why we make babies that don't crawl. He seems really interested in pulling up and he can stand really well barely holding on. 
He has been really social the last few weeks. He likes to click his tongue, fake cough, say "baba" and "mama" (usually only when he's whining but that's fine with me!), and squeal. 
His favorite games are giving big open-mouthed kisses and putting his hand in my mouth and having me pretend to eat it. He loves tickling his hand on Jared's beard. 
He loves bathtime and feels like the tub is a level playing field to snatch toys away from Paxton. His Fisher Price car Gramsy's gave him for Christmas is his favorite toy right now. 
He mastered clapping a few days ago and is really proud of himself when he remembers how to do it. Sometimes he gets confused and just slaps the floor with one hand which is pretty adorable. He can also wave but that isn't new this month...I can't remember when he started but it has been awhile...
We haven't had his 9 month check-up yet so I'm not sure how big he is, but he seems little to me. He's in 9 month clothes and he can still wear little 3 month socks. He has four teeth but the next two on top are already poking through. 
His nap schedule is kind of a disaster...we just put him down when he seems fussy and he usually goes to sleep. He doesn't really have a schedule or even a set number of naps he takes a day. Some days he takes two long naps and some days he takes four short naps...or anything in between. He usually sleeps from about 8:00 at night to 6:45 in the morning, eats and goes back to sleep until about 9:00. 
He's really tough. Paxton knocks him over (usually on accident) a couple times a week and he just rolls over and keeps playing. 
He is still the snuggliest baby. He buries his head in my chest when I hold him and just stays so still. He loves being held and prefers to just sit in my lap instead of being on the floor. In this respect he is the complete opposite of Pax as a baby. When he first wakes up, he needs to just be held and carried around for awhile before he's ready to get down to play. When he gets upset, I pat his back and he always pats mine back. 
I'm trying to soak up every minute with my baby because I know before I know it he will be toding and then running around, racing cars with Paxton and not wanting his mom slowing him down. 

Saturday, January 25, 2014


Christmas this year was a whirlwind like it always is. A fun, laughing, lucky mess of wrapping paper and delicious food and baby snuggles and toddlers kind of grasping the concept of the magic of Christmas for the first time. 

Granny V's is always the first Christmas we have. She makes an amazing meal and we all eat together. 
This year a certain baby got really sleepy in the middle of the present opening and had a tiny breakdown. He caught his second wind and made it through the whole night. An excited toddler opened all of his own presents and all of his brother's. He did not distinguish between the two and was equally excited for each of Porter's gifts and each of his own (except for the clothes...those he threw across the room in disgust). Aunt Maddie got an indoor trampoline that was the highlight of the night. 

On Christmas Eve, we start the day with Grandpa. The boys opened their presents from their grandpa and then Jared's brothers and Candy came over for lunch. Paxton ran out of presents and patience right after lunch so he went down for a nap. 
That night, we headed to Granny's. Paxton was great again this year and Porter slept in his car seat for the first half of the night. We played Dirty Santa and Pax struggled with the realization that the big pile of presents in the middle weren't his. Luckily, there was a fruit tray so he was good. 
As we were driving home, all I could think of was how excited I was to get home and get things ready for Christmas morning. I have such sweet memories of happy Christmas mornings from my childhood and I am so indescribably excited to watch my boys experience that. A bike was built and other presents were assembled and Jared and I had our annual debate about whether or not Santa wraps presents (he doesn't). 
Paxton asked Santa for a red bike for Christmas (well not literally because he just cried when he saw Santa, but whenever we asked him what he was asking Santa for he would say a red bike...). He was just as excited as I hoped he would be when he saw the bike on Christmas morning. He just kept saying "red bike for Christmas!" over and over as he rode it around the house. It was amazing. 
Porter was really happy with his purple sippy cup (apparently assorted colors means you might get stuck with a pink and purple cup...thanks Amazon) and his Scout. 
After we opened our gifts from each other and Jared and Paxton raced cars on Pax's new Matchbox car racetrack (which Jared picked out and was so excited to give him), we headed to Gramsy's house. 
(My sisters and I had matching nightgowns with our initials embroidered on them)
The tradition in my family is that each kid gets a Cabbage Patch doll for their first Christmas. Porter introduced himself to Aiden with a giant kiss, exactly the same way Paxton introduced himself to Allen two short years ago. 
We ate breakfast, opened presents, ate lunch and kept eating until bedtime. It was perfect. The boys took naps and played with toys and shreds of paper. We stayed in our pajamas all day. 

It's always so sad when Christmas is over. This year had a little extra bitterness with the end of the season as the time neared for our big move. We are so thankful to have such loving and giving families. Our boys got so many amazing presents and were showered with so much love. Christmas always reminds me how lucky we are. 

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Paxton's Speech

Paxton's speech has just exploded lately! We have been so impressed with how many phrases he is saying and how many new words he can understandably say. He always tries to repeat new phrases that we say and some of them are pretty adorable. 
I was really surprised tonight. I took a batch of cookies out of the oven and Pax came over and asked for one. I told him they were really hot and we needed to wait for them to cool. He got a big smile on his face and said "I want to blow on them." It was awesome because I think it was his first complete sentence that he formed on his own (instead of just repeating a canned sentence) and I love that he problem-solved!

Later, I was getting him ready for bed and Jared was in the other room singing. All of a sudden, Pax got really quiet and said "I hear Daddy singing 'Get ready, get ready, Elmo ready for skoo, thanks you'" which was, in fact, what Jared was singing. So not only was I so impressed that he made a sentence, it was also one of the first times that he's actually sang words to a song instead of just making sounds to the tune. 

I'm loving watching him learn how to communicate and it's so neat to see how excited he gets when he realizes how cool it is that we understand him. 

The other thing that is surprising me lately is his memory. There is a Mickey episode that he has been watching lately where a marshmallow is one of the mousekatools. Every time he sees it, he says "Mommy and Daddy and Paxton threw marshmallows at Grandpa Mark's house." And he's right. I was making cookies a few weeks before Christmas and a marshmallow fight ensued. I can't believe he still remembers it! He also talks about tiny details from people's houses or mundane events that happened. It's so crazy to think that in the past he was probably trying to talk about these things and we just couldn't understand him. 

I just have to scoop him up and tell him how proud I am of him multiple times a day because I really am. I have been so worried about him getting caught up in time for school and being able to communicate with us and it's just so awesome to see it start to click for him. I know he still has a long way to go, but he has made such huge improvements just in the last two days!

Monday, January 13, 2014


This morning was one of my favorite mornings with these two little boys of mine. They were both up early, but that came with a little extra sleepiness and a need for some cuddles in Mommy's bed. 
Paxton's new thing is waking up and busting out of his room. I am still surprised every day when he walks in to our room and says "hi mommy! How was your nap?" This morning he climbed straight into bed with me, where I was feeding Porter. We turned Mickey on and after a few minutes, Pax reached over and grabbed my hand and held it. When I looked over at him, I saw Porter's tiny hand resting on Paxton's leg. It was such a sweet moment. 

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


Porter was 8 months old on Christmas Day! The movers had already come and picked up his bear and his rocking chair so we waited until we got them back to take the pictures. (Porter: if you're reading this in the future it was totally NOT second-child syndrome! We remembered!) 

At eight months old Porter is:
-Sitting securely and going from lying down to sitting up and vice versa. He is rolling and scooting around but not crawling yet. He still gets up on all fours all the time but hasn't moved yet. He has tried to pull up a few times already which I am not ready for!
-waving and giving sweet open-mouthed kisses. He can also drink from a straw. His favorite sound is a tongue clicking sound. He says ba ba a lot. 
-still going strong on the nursing journey. He nurses five times a day, usually every 3 hours. He is obsessed with eating and will demolish jars of baby food, pouches are gone in seconds and anytime anyone else is eating he needs to be eating too. He will eat anything put in front of him and he will keep eating until you pry him away from the food, literally kicking and screaming. He is amazing when we go out to eat. He sits happily in a high chair and looks around and then eats everyone's food and all the puffs we will give him. We've been giving him watery apple juice because his Reflux medicine makes him constipated and he loves that, but if you give him a sippy of water only he will take a sip, make a horrible face and throw the cup down. He's definitely opinionated. Speaking of the Reflux medicine, we have taken him off of it because it seemed like his discomfort from the constipation was worse than the reflux. We haven't seen any indication that he feels bad off the medicine and the constipation is fixed so I think it's safe to say he's officially off the medicine. 
-sleeping through the night for the most part. Every few nights he will wake up wanting to nurse, but we have found out that if I actually go in and nurse him, he will be up every three hours and then will repeat that every night until we break the cycle. So as much as I hate the cry-it-out method, that's what works for him. He usually only cries for 10 minutes and then falls back asleep. Most nights he doesn't cry at all. 
-an extreme mama's boy. I thought Pax was but he had nothing on his baby brother. Porter makes it completely obvious that he wants me to be holding him at all times. If someone else is holding him, he will tolerate it for a few minutes if he's in a good mood and then he will lunge towards me and cry until I take him. He does not like being in rooms alone and will immediately start crying when whoever is in there with him walks out. He makes up for his lack of independence with his cuddliness. He could seriously be held and snuggled all day and be the happiest baby ever. This morning I noticed that he had been really happy all morning and I realized that I hadn't put him down once. He was perfectly content being in my arms all morning. 
-loving: bath time, watching Paxton, playing with Daddy (especially if I hold him while he plays), mirrors, iPhones and stealing whatever toy Pax is playing with. He has stopped hating Scarlett and now tolerates her being in the same room with him. On a few occasions he has even reached out to touch her. 
I think the word that best sums up Porter this month is sweet. He is so cuddly and loves giving kisses and being talked to. He is so happy now that his Reflux is better, but he's a much quieter and calmer happy than Paxton was. I love learning his little quirks and seeing his personality start to shine through. I think he's perfect for us. 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

The Big Move--the Road Trip

We knew when we agreed to the big move from OKC to Durham that it would involve an 18 hour road trip to get there. It was not the part we were most looking forward to with an 8 month old and a 2.5 year old. 

Then when we were booking our dates with the movers we found out that they would be picking our stuff up on Dec. 19th and delivering it in NC between the 1st and the 9th of January. This meant that we would have to have 22 days of stuff for four people and one puggle with us in the car. Then we realized that Christmas would fall in that gap so our already packed car would have to hold all of our Christmas presents also. 

We ended up with a car that was literally packed to the roof and a full luggage rack. I couldn't even see Paxton from the front. 
We broke the trip down into three six-hour days since our boys had never been in the car longer than the three-hour trips to Dallas we had taken. The first day we made it almost 4 hours without stopping which landed us in Clarksville, AR. 
We made it to Memphis, TN that evening where we spent our first night. 
Our first few minutes in the hotel were complete insanity as four people and a dog who had been cooped up all day finally stretched their legs. 
We woke up bright and early New Year's Eve morning for the hotel breakfast but somehow didn't leave the hotel until 11:00. 
We made it to Nashville for the first stop. I was excited that we were halfway through the trip. 
Both days Paxton (who refuses to sleep in the car if he can possibly help it) fell asleep about 30 minutes before we got to the hotel and woke up very grumpy. By the time we got to the hotel room, he was a crazy toddler blur. 
Since it was New Year's Eve, Jared offered to take us somewhere fancy: the Cracker Barrell across the street. 
The hotel room was supposed to have a separate living area for Pax but it was all one big room, so after almost two hours of waiting for Pax to stop standing on his pull-out couch talking about bugs, we gave up and took our champagne and iPads out to the hall. 
The next day I did not take pictures of the four stops we had to make because I was just SO READY to be there. 

When we finally saw signs for Durham, we were very excited. 
We drove straight to our house because I hadn't seen it in real life and Paxton was asking to see his house. We didn't have the keys so we thought we would just be able to see the outside, but the back door was unlocked so we got to go in. 
When we got back to the hotel Scarlett continued her new tradition of sleeping on the pull-out couch with Pax. 
Today Paxton threw a massive fit when we talked about getting in the car so we knew we couldn't drive far. We ended up going to the American Tobacco Campus and eating lunch and walking around. Pax loved it. 
And Porter and I recreated my single maternity picture that was taken there. 
We are so ready to get our keys tomorrow and be out of hotels!!