Zachary: 10 Months

Zachary is now ten months old!  Our Zach is one busy little boy. Constantly on the go.

Zachary uses his walking toy almost everyday. He will sit comfortably on his knees to push buttons, turn nobs, and open the doors . Or he will pull himself to standing then take off walking, without any help! I have to pay attention because Zach can be halfway down the hallway in no time.

Zachary loves to play with his activity cube pulling objects in and out of the shape sorter. He likes to push the cube around  on his knees and open and close the story book on it.  If you ask Zach will put an object in or out of the sorter or a different  container. He will also hand you an object, again if you ask. If we hide an object under a blanket, pillow, or container he will  find it, almost every time.

This month furniture has been as interesting as toys. Zach uses the cedar chest, couches, ottomans, even the baby gate to pull up or cruise with. He wants so badly to look out the window, pulling up on the ledge on his tip toes. Zach has learned if he stand behind the window curtains he can play hide and seek with mommy. We also had to drop his crib this month because he had learned to pull up on it.

Zachary is crawling on all fours most of the time. He gives out great high fives and is working on waving bye bye. Zach loves to say “dada” “dog” and “kira”. He knows how to bang two objects together and is trying to figure out how to clap his hands.

Zachary has no hesitation exploring. When he falls down or gets stuck, most of the time he goes right back to it again. He knows how to sit when he falls backward or put out his hand to catch himself forward.

On sunny days this month Zach has enjoyed his swing. He loves the wind in his face and smiles and giggles, until he gets cold.

Zachary enjoyed corn beef  and wore green for St. Patrick’s day. Then Luke’s friends from Oregon stayed with us for Luke’s birthday weekend. Zach loved new people to play with and was thrilled to get so much attention. He also really enjoyed Dad’s birthday dinner out: Korean BBQ , when he was fed piece of meat for more than two hours straight.

This past weekend my parents came for a brief visit and to deliver my great-grandmother’s piano. Zachary was very curious about the piano and enjoyed sitting my lap and hitting the keys. He also is happy to have another piece of furniture to play with. I am excited to get it tuned and watch Zach dance around as I play.

We are looking forward to celebrating Zachary first Easter with NaiNai and Papa this next weekend.

 

Zachary: 9 Months

This was a month of milestones and new experiences for Zachary.

At the beginning of the month he extended his arms and started rocking on all fours. After that, he began to pull up on boxes.

That quickly changed to climbing up and down boxes of different heights, from shoe box all the way to diaper box. Now, Zachary is pulling himself into a standing position using his book crate.

With all of this physical development there have been a few tumbles and tears. So, we are teaching Zach to lean back and sit down if unbalanced. We are learning his “help I’m stuck” whine when he gets into a position he doesn’t know how to get out of.

With this new exercise Zach now favors finger foods and solids over puree. When he does eat puree, he insists on grabbing the spoon and feeding himself. Which of course is messy. It’s also much easier for Zachary to eat carbs and meat now that he has FOUR teeth on top! The first two cut through at the beginning of the month, the second two near the end. So, he now has 6 teeth total!

On our first snow day, Mom decided to build a fort. Zach loved exploring his tunnels and hiding with Mom and a few books. We went outside to explore the snow. But it was cold, Zachary had several jackets on, and it was almost nap time, so he didn’t think the outing was very fun.

A few weeks ago, we started attending Baby Books at the Library. Once a week a volunteer leads songs, structured play, and reads short books for babies and their caretakers. The first time, Zach was overwhelmed but by the end he was smiling and wiggling along with the rest. At Baby Books he saw bubbles for the first time, and got to crawl under a colorful parachute. Needless to say, he takes a nap on the way home, every time.

For Valentine’s Day Zach got a special treat: whipped cream and strawberries, strawberries are ok, but he really likes the cream. On President’s day weekend he spent the day with NaiNai and Papa so Mom and Dad could have a long needed day away. We had sushi, frozen yogurt, and saw not one by TWO movies.

At the end of the month we went to  Olympia”s Hands on Children’s Museum. There are lots of amazing interactive exhibits ready for Zach when he’s older. Fortunately they did have a special area called “Snug Harbor” designed for little ones. Zachary sat comfortably our laps while exploring puzzles, he slowly began to crawl around, but never too far from us. Zach’s not used that much stimulation or that many people. Even though it was a sunny day, the museum was very busy, it was great to see so many families taking time with their children.

The volunteers at MOPs say Zach has had a least one if not two growth spurts since Christmas.

There is proof they are right as he is now in the tallest slot for the infant car seat. He is already in 12 month PJs and his feet almost touch the foot rest of his highchair. Everyone says he will be crawling and cruising before we know it.

 

Happy Valentine’s Day

This year I have two sweethearts to celebrate for Valentine’s Day. Last year at this time we went on a mini baby-moon Day-cation and now I get to celebrate the love I have for my little boy.

Don’t worry Luke won’t be left out. As usual I will be making berry pie. For more see:  Valentine’s Pie and  pie remix

We will also the next weekend cash in on a Christmas present from NaiNai and Papa: movie gift card with babysitting included.

Whether it’s friends, family, or a significant other, hope you all get to spend Valentine’s with someone you care about.

Zachary: 8 Months

Zach is a totally different little boy than he was at Christmas! It feels like I blinked and we are already well on our way to walking and toddler life.

Zachariah was dedicated on January 14th during our Sunday church service. We were blessed to have both sets of grandparents and one pair of great-grand parents stand with us.

The church prayed over Zachary and Luke and I promised, along with the help of the family present, to guide Zach’s spiritual growth. It was a great weekend celebrating Zachary and spending time together as a family.

This month Zachary is eating more efficiently, which means less on the floor for the dog. He likes bread and noodles, and will eat bananas and avocado with his fingers. He still likes applesauce and has added peanut butter, blueberries, and some shredded meat occasionally to his diet. Zach will also “eat” grapes and cuties by sucking out the juice then spitting the rest out.

After family visited for his dedication, Zachary expanded his babbling. He has been working on more complex combination of sounds and adding “g” to his vocabulary. But his favorite this month has be “dada” and “nana” (which we think means “mama

Zach has become a confident sitter, he can reach for and play with toys while still keeping balance and is beginning to rock on all fours; he will be crawling on his knees soon. He is also teething again, working on those top two front teeth. We are ready this time with applesauce popsicles, drool bandanas, and frozen teething rings.

He is also sleeping through the night (mostly) and in his own room, minus the occasional cough, and mom and dad are learning to as well. Ok mostly Mom. Speaking of mom, Zach has been more mommy focused; reaching for me and away from other people, showing a preference. He is crawling to me for cuddles or nursing and will pull on my pant legs and kick to say “up” or “nana”.

Zach has been enjoying all his Christmas toys and first encountered “sharing” with a friend during his first playdate, which was with a little boy a year older than him.

One Christmas item Zach got was a door-way bouncer. He is warming up to it he will lean one way or another and use his feet to spin the bouncer to face a different direction.

Since it has been such a mild winter, Zach and I have been enjoying walks on the property discovering moss, ferns, pine needles, and dry tall wild grass. Zach is thankful for his fleece jacket from NaiNai, his bear beanie hat from Grandma, and for overalls as he explores the great outdoors.

Also new this month: Zach is loving bath time in the big bathtub. He is learning to play with water: kicking and splashing and chewing on rubber duckies and frogs. We are still learning we have to stay seated in the bath. Zachary found Kira’s water bowl, which looks similar steel bowls he plays with in the living room, but with water in it. Fortunately, he didn’t drink, just soaked his clothes.

Sorry the 8 month pictures may be a little blurry. Zach did not want to sit still for a photo shoot. He thought he’drather eat or try to take the sticker off than when wear it.

It’s been one long month adjusting back after the holidays, but Zach is doing well and we are both ready for more adventures out and making new friends.

 

 

Zachary: 7 Months

Zach turned 7 months on New Year’s Eve. He spent the day traveling home from Grandma and Grandpa’s lake-house and went to bed at home three hours before midnight.

Zach went to his first Christmas party in Holiday PJs at our Young Family group where we sang carols together. Then at the MOPs party the next day he made his first ornament: a snowman made out of his thumb print.

He also saw the Borst Park lights from his car seat and stayed with a babysitter for the first time so his parents could enjoy a holiday date to see the newest Star Wars movie.

Zachary enjoyed going with us to pick out our Christmas tree from Jensen Family Tree Farm. There was such a great selection of trees it was hard to choose one! We could tell it was time to cut one down because Zach was cold and ready for a nap.

Zachary now has two shiny bottom teeth. The first came in slowly starting at Thanksgiving, the second came much faster through Christmas. Both holiday dinners ended in applesauce popsicles to sooth a sore mouth. Now the teeth have evened out and has a cute toothy grin.

With the help of his new teeth, he has also discovered finger foods. Cheerios and puff cereal are good, he also likes noodles, but his favorite is cheese. He will eat green beans but still prefers his fruits and vegetables in their pureed form

Zach has become a very efficient scooter and is working on a full crawl, getting up on his knees then pushing off with his feet. He is determined to explore everything he is not supposed to, especially the outlets. It was a daily battle to keep Zach away from the Christmas light plug in. Even after turning him around and giving him a toy, he will go right back for the same plug. He now has found ALL of the outlets in the living room.

Zach’s language skills have also expanded. We are have heard him mimic several words he hears often including:   “dada” “mama” “water” and “up” and “kira”. He will say these words  but not always in connection with the person or object.

Zachary spent his first Holiday season visiting family. At both families he had Christmas present opening sessions all to himself, in the afternoons, after his morning nap.

His favorite thing about Christmas presents were the bows and tissue paper, which we had to keep him from eating, along with NaiNai and Papa’s tinsel from their tree. He enjoyed his presents a little too, but our little extrovert mostly liked spending time with everyone.  Bedtime routine was a bit of a challenge, he didn’t want to miss out on the fun!

After we got back from our travels, Zach decided to start off the new year in big-boy crib. He is now settling nicely in his own bedroom for naps and bedtime.

Hope you all had a wonderful holiday season.

 

 

 

 

Favorite Things

As the holiday chaos hits full swing I am receiving almost daily packages of ordered Christmas presents. I’m sure the post person, UPS and FedEx drivers are getting tired of my long driveway, gated yards, and over-protective “guard-dog”.

Anywhere you go you see advertisements for everything you could possible want for Christmas. Before half of December has finished, you can easily be up to your ears in Cheery Christmas deals. No matter how hard you resist, you feel yourself pulled in by sales and stretching that holiday budget.

The advertisements this year are all about how to make my baby’s Christmas “magical”. In order for that to happen  I need to buy the newest educational toys. I need to pay for photos of my child in a Santa hat in front of a Christmas tree. And I need to take my son to see Santa. Oh and I need to buy him holiday PJ’s and  . . .the list continues. The pressure is: they only have a first Christmas once.

As I open one of many brown boxes, I see the excitement in both my son and dog’s eyes.

But it’s not for the gift inside.

Our dog loves the plastic air insulators. With supervision, she enjoys popping them with her teeth and throwing them up in the air. (When the air is gone we throw them away).

And my son? He has discovered the joy of a cardboard box. It is great to sit in, play peek-a-boo with, push or throw around the floor, it makes a great drum and if big enough (with mom or dad’s help) it can be a nice car or space ship.

A cardboard box and packaging: my family’s favorite things.

It’s a refreshing reminder this holiday season that we do not really need all that much.

I saw posted on Facebook this week “Buy Presents Be Present”.

It’s easy for me to get so preoccupied by preparing for tomorrow that I miss out on the festivities today.

This ‘Baby’s First Christmas’ needs to be more about the memories we make than the tree, outings, outfits, or presents.

Being present in the holiday moment right in front of me; it is the best gift I can offer my family this holiday,

. . .that and maybe a few more cardboard boxes.