Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Good Bye, 2013!

This year has been absolutely amazing!  Other than the first 19 days, Carter's whole life has been during the year 2013.  He has reached so many firsts, learned so many new things, and brought tons of joy to all of our lives.  During 2013 he learned how to roll over, smile, laugh, eat purees, sit up without support, crawl, sit up on his own, and pull to a stand.  He also grew over 10 inches, over 14 pounds, quite a bit of hair, and 6 teeth.  The boy has been busy!

Just like how I felt when his first birthday came and went, I'm sad to see 2013 go, but I'm also excited for what 2014 has in store.  I know 2014 will bring walking, talking, and lots more teeth into our lives.  It will also bring Carter's first cousin.  Ty's cousin, Megan, is due in April and we are all very excited for another baby to join the family!

What I'm loving the most right now is how Carter scrunches his nose when he smiles.  The way he immediately starts dancing the moment he hears music.  How I walk into a room and catch him flipping through a book and undoubtedly reading the pictures as he jabbers to himself.  The way he shares everything by handing it to you and the moment you say thank you, snatching it back.  We end 2013 in a great place.  With a baby who is just independent enough for me to get more done around the house, but still dependent enough for me to not cry myself to sleep.  Just kidding, but really when he walks off to kindergarten with a backpack on his back, watch out!

This year has brought me so much joy, so much happiness, so much love.  Here's a look back at the past year in pictures!

January 2013

Not the best picture of us, but it captures so much about that 1st month with little man.
February 2013

Working on rolling over.
Carter's first Valentine's Day.

Carter's first trip to the aquarium.
Carter's first snow.
 March 2013
My first postpartum 5k and Carter's first 5k in the stroller.
Working on neck strength and head control!

Carter's first St. Patrick's Day.

Carter's first Easter.
April 2013

Eating a puree for the first time.

Harper turned 5!
May 2013

Visited Great Grandma on Mother's Day.
June 2013

Carter reading with daddy on Father's Day.
July 2013

Carter's first 4th of July.
Carter completed the Summer Reading Program at our public library.
Ty and I celebrated our 2nd anniversary.
August 2013
September 2013
Carter carved his first pumpkin.
October 2013
Thomas, Jeremy, and I ran a half-marathon.  My first postpartum half-marathon.

I was away form Carter for the first time overnight for my friend Steph's wedding.
November 2013
Ty finished his first half-marathon.
Carter enjoyed his first Thanksgiving.
December 2013
Carter enjoyed the first snow he could actually play in.

We celebrated Carter's first birthday.
Carter celebrated his 2nd Christmas.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Good News and a First

We got good news back today about Carter's allergy test.  He is mildly allergic to egg whites and the doctor thinks he will outgrow it.  We are to avoid egg whites for now.  I'm so glad we got the results I had hoped for.  Since Carter had no reaction to his flu shot and only threw up when he ate eggs with no other reations, I hoped that meant it was a mild allergy!
Carter is obsessed with drinking from my water bottle!

This afternoon Carter pulled up to a stand at the futon trying to reach for Harper.  I was so excited that I began cheering for him.  He looked at me and fell down.  Then he pulled up to his knees and reached for me, wanting help to stand.  This evening Ty coaxed Carter toward him on the couch and Carter pulled up again!  When he fell down, he pulled up again and again and again!  I am so proud of him!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Christmas, Round 2

Friday morning my parents left after our Christmas together and Friday evening Ty's parents arrived to celebrate Christmas with us.  They enjoyed a little bit of time with Carter before he went to bed and then they got up with Carter and played with him so Ty and I could sleep in.  And I couldn't believe it, I slept in until almost 10:00 am!  I didn't know I had it in me!
Reading with Grandma and Grandpa.

Saturday morning we did our Christmas together.  Ty and I had a couple of presents and then Carter opened presents from his grandparents, aunt and uncle, great grandparents, and great aunt.  He enjoyed opening presents for a while and then became more interested in playing with his new toys and the paper.  The last present he opened was a Strider bike from his Uncle Paul, Aunt Amanda, and grandparents.

Pure concentration while opening a present from GiGi and Great Papa.

I was so excited when I saw it because I've seen children use them before and they seem great for teaching children balance.  Ty was advanced when it came to bike riding and learned how to ride a bike around 4 years old.  I was a bit delayed in that department.  I learned how to ride a bike much later than my friends, to the point where it started to get embarrassing for me.  I eventually got tubes in my ears which helped with my balance, but that wasn't the entire problem.  With how late Carter was with crawling, I'd like to give him a head's up with some of the other gross motor skills.  What a perfect present for that!  Ty and his dad quickly assembled the bike and I was shocked with how well Carter did "riding it"!  Today he was even doing most of the moving on his own with just help keeping his balance.
Checking out his Strider.

Carter's first ride on the Strider, we helped him walk along:

Today on his Strider, grandpa helped steady the bike, but Carter did all the walking.  Sidenote, Carter has a cold which is accompanied by a nasty cough.

After our Christmas we decided to head out for some exercise.  We went out to the trails.  Ty and I ran while his parents walked with Carter.  It was a beautiful day, perfect for being outdoors and of course running!  I decided to put in some quarter-mile and half-mile repeats and was pleased with the times I was able to hit with a hiatus from speedy runs.  Afterward we decided to pick up sandwiches since we hadn't eaten lunch yet.  The way home is where our day took a bit of a turn.

Ty was driving and took a left turn onto an on-ramp to the highway.  A car came from the other direction and didn't yield where a yield sign was posted, slamming into the side of our car.  She hit very close to where Leina was sitting, but thankfully no one was hurt!  Obviously we were all a bit shaken up and I was mentally freaking out about the fact that Carter was in the car.  When looking for cars I really wanted to find one that would allow us to have 2 car seats in the middle.  We couldn't find any cars with that capability.  While we sat waiting for police to arrive I began to stress about the fact that if we had another baby, Carter would have been in a car seat in the back row of seats on the side rather than the middle.  I worked to hold in tears just having the thought.  Luckily when I mentioned it to my mom she said someone would need to be going 55-60 miles for anyone to be seriously hurt and reminded me that Carter would be safer than any of us since he's in a car seat.  I'm still a bit leery of Carter riding anywhere but in the middle of the seats, but I also have to remind myself there is absolutely no way I can protect Carter from everything.
The side of our car after the wreck.  We've only had it for a month!

Needless to say we arrived home much later than planned.  Ty's parents had offered to stay home with Carter so Ty and I could go on our first date since Carter was born.  It's hard to believe we hadn't been on a date in over a year, but it's true.  When Carter was younger I couldn't bring myself to leave him.  And to be perfectly honest, I'm just starting to get better about that.  I pretty much dread anything that causes me to be away from him during my precious evening time, especially when I'm working.  Normally the thought of leaving Carter leaves my chest feeling tight, but I was actually excited for our date.  Only Ty can do that to me!  So I was hoping Ty was still feeling up to it.  He was, so we headed out after Carter went down for the night.

We had to take a picture before we headed out on our first date in a year!
We hopped in our banged up car and took off to see Anchorman 2 in theaters.  I'm not a big "go to the movies" type of person.  I just don't see the fun in paying a ton of money to sit in uncomfortable chairs where I can't cuddle with my man, but Ty loves going to movies and I had a gift certificate from a student.  We arrived at the movie theater only to see the movie was sold out.  We headed to another movie theater, but their next showing was too late.  I'm getting old, people, no way am I going to a 10:00 or later movie.  I don't care is it's a Saturday and I don't even have to work on Monday.

We wracked our brains for something to do.  Being out of the dating game for a year sure made us rusty.  I looked up coffee shops in the area and found one that was open and also served alcoholic beverages.  It said they have live music on the weekend which we thought sounded like a lot of fun!  When we arrived we walked up to the bar and I ordered a spiked hot chocolate.  Then the bartender asked to see my ID and I realized I didn't have it with me.  I was so embarrassed.  Now I looked like I was underage and hoping I wouldn't get carded.  I mumbled something about not having my ID and immediately turned to leave.

When we got to the car I was frustrated, embarrassed, and feeling defeated.  I didn't want to give up on our date night, especially when lord knows when we'll have another.  So after some tears, I bucked up and we continued on with what seemed to be a hopeless endeavor.  We decided to find some hot chocolate somewhere and drive around looking at Christmas lights.  First stop was Panera which had just closed.  As we were driving to a nearby Starbucks I noticed a cute, little coffee shop that looked open.  Ty flipped around and headed back and we had our first win of the night!  Not only was the coffee shop open, but it was adorable!  We sat on an old sunken in couch and sipped our drinks.  My decaff caramel latte which was delicious and Ty's iced something that he took a few sips of and claimed it tasted like somebody's rear end (putting it nicely).  It was the perfect date.  We sat and talked, just enjoying each other.  Then we walked down the strip of shops a little ways.  Ty had made me grab a coat at the last minute, so I was comfortable, but he didn't grab one for himself and was cold.  On our way home I felt like that date was everything I needed.  Some quiet, adult time alone with Ty somewhere other than our couch.  So the best Christmas present (other than Carter) was the gift of a date from his parents.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Carter's 2nd Christmas

Christmas morning Carter woke up at 7:00 am.  I got up with him and he ate breakfast first thing.  Then I changed his diaper and switched him over from his overnight jammies to his Christmas jammies from Uncle Paul and Aunt Amanda which he wore all day long.  Grammy and grampy woke up and we all went in to play with Carter's Laugh and Learn Learning Home from grammy and grampy.  He had a blast and played with it all morning until everyone else woke up around 10:00 am.

We all went in to see what Santa brought and checked out our stockings.  Then we sat down for egg casserole and muffins for breakfast.  And of course I grabbed some chocolate from my stocking to go with it!  Carter ate a morning snack of yogurt and blueberries while we ate breakfast and then he was tired.  My dad was very excited that he got to rock Carter to sleep for a nap.
Checking out his stocking stuffers.

While Carter napped the rest of us opened our presents.  But the real fun began when he woke up.  All 6 adults sat around and watched as he opened his presents.  Wrapping in tissue paper turned out to work really well.  Carter loved ripping it off.  He would rip some tissue paper off the present, hand it to his Uncle Thomas, and either take it back or rip off more and start the process all over again.  He got lots of books, a few toys, and some clothes. 

Handing tissue paper to Uncie Tommy.
That evening we read books, snacked some, and ate enchiladas for dinner.   Carter tried the enchiladas and loved them.  It was his first taste of Mexican food and he was definitely a fan! 
Reading with Grammy.

Seeing how much more fun Christmas was this year compared to last year, I'm even more excited for next year.  Watching him grow up is hard, but it is also so much fun and exciting.  He went from laying in a bassinet surrounded by presents to actually unwrapping presents on his own a year later.  Next year I picture him being excited to open presents and actually understanding what's going on a little bit better.
Christmas 2012, 11 days old.
Christmas 2013, 1 year and 11 days.