Saturday, January 18, 2014

A Letter to Carter at 13 Months

I'm still having a hard time believing you are a year old and here we are a whole month past your first birthday!  You are seriously the cutest little thing and still sweet as ever!  Just looking at you makes me smile so hard.  Hearing your laugh brightens my day.  It doesn't matter if it's in person or watching videos on my phone.  It make my day every single time.  When I'm walking in the halls at school after dropping students off in specials or at lunch or heading to pick students up, I am always flipping through pictures and videos of you.  One day I was watching a video of you spinning at the park, laughing when the specials teacher opened the door.  I looked up with the biggest smile on my face and she was in grumpy mood so she grunted at me and made a face.  Not even that could bring me down from the happiness of hearing your laugh.  It's my heart's medicine when I'm missing you!

Let me say that getting these 13 month pictures was incredibly difficult!  I felt like a clown between making silly faces at you, singing "What Does the Fox Say?", clicking my tongue, and swishing my hair around to get your attention and get you to smile.  Then daddy got home and you loved peering at me over his legs.  Sadly my favorite picture from the shoot includes your daddy's legs, but at this point I'll take what I get when it comes to pictures!  I'm sure it's only going to get harder all the way up until your teenage years when you flat out refuse to take pictures!

Crawling is still your main form of transportation although you are pulling up to a stand and cruising much more now.  You love to make me nervous as all get out!  Instead of going through the door of your car, you always climb over one of the other sides and of course go head first.  Daddy is always reminding me it's how you learn, but it doesn't change the fact that my heart races every single time!  The cutest thing you've picked up this month is standing on your tippy toes.  When you are standing up and want to see something just out of your view you pop up onto your tippy toes.  It is absolutely adorable and always elicits giggles from me.  That is unless you are in the tub then I about pass out from fear!  You've always loved your baths (well since you hit the age where you could take real baths, not sure any newborns enjoy them) but all the sudden this month you scream initially when I put you in and stand rigidly with straight legs.  I try to sit you down and you won't budge.  Eventually you sit down on your own and then it's like a normal bath.  Tonight you never sat down and I had to wash you while you were standing and I was holding one of your arms because you had your legs spread really wide and I was afraid you were going to fall!

This month you have been a little bit less of a momma's boy.  You still follow me around at home and use me as your home base, crawling over and laying your head in my lap.  Sometimes you very adamantly request to sit in my lap.  We usually read books when you are desperate to be in my lap.  You aren't so dead set on having momma anymore though.  If I pass you off to daddy or someone else you fuss initially, but give up after a few seconds.  You have even grabbed for daddy a few times when I was holding you which was unheard of before!  When we get to daycare you strain out of my arms so you can take off after your friends.  One of your buddies always rushes to greet you and either waves or pats you on the back.

Crying and hand movements are still your main form of communication.  You do call me mama and you say dada, but not normally directed at daddy.  When you see Skippy you squeal and say ca ca, ki ki, or ki ca over and over.  At the zoo you said ca ca when you saw a sand cat, so you definitely understand all cats and not just Skippy.  When you want me you will reach your hand out and motion toward yourself with your fingers.  You also let it be known when you want held or when you want to walk.  When you want held you reach your arms straight up in the air so I can put my hands in your armpits to lift you up.  When you want to walk you reach your arms up about half-way and bent with your palms facing up.  If I don't put my fingers out for you to grab soon enough, you peer around and reach around searching for my hands.  If you are sitting in a chair with me and want down, you reach around for my hands to slide down on your back.  If I'm not there or you can't get to my hands you flip around to your belly and slide down that way.  You figured that out on your own the first day you tried to do it.  I was so surprised!
Come on, momma, let's eat!

Harper and Skippy's water bowl continues to hold your attention.  You speed crawl to it and stop mid-crawl expressing disappointment when we pick the bowl up.  Today I went to the bathroom and daddy thought I took you with me.  He was cooking breakfast and heard a strange noise only to look around and discover you playing in the water bowl.  Normally you slap and splash in the water or completely pour it out.  Today you were dipping your fist in the bowl and drinking the water off your hand.  Yep, you are just a bit gross!  You're gonna end up with an immune system like mommy's!  I'd say a close 2nd favorite toy would be books.  I keep a few board books in every room.  Last month you would sit with a book and turn the pages.  This month you started making noises as you turn the page as though you are reading.  Your favorite books to have read to you are usually books with animal noises.  Your favorite book to flip through and read to yourself is "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?"  I think it's because of the bright pictures with the simple white background.  Each animal is large on the page and grabs your attention.  You'll flip from the front to the back and then from the back to the front.  When I read it to you, you flip through so fast I have to skip some of the pages.

Too busy reading to take your 13 month pictures!

It is so much fun to watch you figure out how things work.  You understand the balls of your Elefun game come out the trunk and you have tried pushing the balls down into the trunk.  Just recently you finally noticed after watching me where to put the balls in.  You also know to push the red button for music.  You've even tried putting Skippy's ball toy into your humidifier.  An understandable mistake as it looks a lot like Elefun!

You have been completely weaned pretty much all month.  You aren't much for cow's milk.  Every once in a while you will drink some of it, but most of the time you just continuously throw it on the floor until I relent and replace it with water.  Water or apple juice you chug down until you have to stop for fear of choking.  I fill your sippy about 1/8 of the way with juice and then the rest of the way with water, so it's pretty much water as well.  You drink milk or juice with breakfast and dinner, milk with lunch, and water with snacks.  Sometimes during dinner you will start screaming because you are thirsty and don't have your sippy yet.  I try to get food on your tray first and then work on the sippy, sometimes it's just not fast enough!  We are wondering if you have a smidge of a milk allergy or lactose intolerance because you don't like to drink milk (sometimes even spitting it out) and have been spitting up a little bit after eating yogurt, but you eat cottage cheese and cheese just fine.  So who knows, maybe you just aren't a fan!

Surprisingly this month you moved to waking up at 6:00 pretty much every day.  I was worried you weren't getting enough sleep going down at 8:00 so we've moved your bedtime to 7:30.  It doesn't matter what time you go down, you wake up at 6:00 so that way you get a bit more sleep.  We may move your bedtime up to 7:00, but I just hate to do that because it would mean I only get 3 hours with you before bedtime on weeknights and that's just not enough for momma!  Every 15 minutes is a treasure and I just can't give up 30 whole minutes and you seem to do okay with 10.5-11 hours of sleep at night.  Most days you wake up and lay in bed quietly playing for a while.  Some days you wake up and want picked up right away.  When you want picked up and we don't get there right away, I'll come int to find you standing in your crib and the monkeys ripped off your mobile and laying in your crib.  Although sometimes you quietly do that to entertain yourself while you wait on someone to come get you.  One Saturday you even woke up at 6 and laid in bed quietly until 7:00!  I sure would love to sleep in until 7:00 on weekends, but I love you waking up at 6:00 on weekdays because I get an extra hour with you before work/daycare. 

With your earlier wake up time, daddy gets up after you.  By the time he's up and in the shower you have already eaten breakfast, had a diaper change, and gotten dressed.  While daddy's in the shower you usually play in the hallway or in the bathroom with I straighten my hair.  One morning daddy peeked out around the shower curtain to see you.  He regretted that decision because you realized where he was.  Now every morning as he showers you come into the bathroom and play peek-a-boo with the shower curtain, freezing daddy by letting the cold air in!  I think it is adorable, but I'm not the one freezing!

At home you take a little 30-45 minute nap in the morning usually after being awake for about 3-4 hours (at 9:00-10:00) and a 2 hour nap in the afternoon around 2:00.  At daycare you take one nap in the afternoon with the rest of the kids.  You really still need your morning nap and get really tired at daycare before lunchtime, but if you took a morning nap your afternoon nap would be later in the afternoon than everyone else and you wouldn't sleep very well.  So you skip your morning nap and sleep for 2.5 hours or even a little bit more from 11:45 or 12:00-2:30.  Your teacher said you usually go down first and wake up last, that's my boy!  Well, more like your daddy's boy!

There have been so many new foods this month, I haven't been keeping track.  You had your first restaurant meal this month at our favorite Mexican restaurant.  You had a beef enchilada, a cheese enchilada, and rice.  Daddy ate your refried beans because I didn't want you to have too much new stuff at once.  I'd say your favorite part of the meal was the rice.  You dominated it!

This month we weighed and measured you at home, so it's not totally accurate, but it gives us an idea of how much you've grown.  You are 20.8 pounds and 31 inches.  You are still wearing some 12 month clothes.  You have a few onesies that don't button so I guess you have a long torso.  Your 12 month pants fit really well especially because we don't want them dragging on the ground now that you are standing and cruising so much!  You are also wearing 18 month clothes.  The onesies fit better, but the pants tend to be a little bit long and your waist is so tiny they sag a bit.  I keep joking you need a belt, but that would make diaper changes even more interesting!  Your toes are creeping toward the end of your size 3 shoes, but your size 4 shoes are still a bit big, although you wear both size 3 & 4 shoes right now.  I'd say you are between sizes, a size 3.5.  You are still in size 3 diapers.  We switched to Luvs from Huggies the last time we bought diapers because they were cheaper and you didn't have any accidents in the ones your Grandma bought you, but you've been getting lots of diaper rashes, so we are going to switch back to Huggies and see if that helps.  Otherwise it must be something you're eating and it will take us a while to figure it out, but I'm guessing the culprit is citrus or milk if it's not the diaper brand change.

You are the funniest little guy.  You make me laugh really hard at least once every day.  You do the strangest things.  Like shove random things from the floor in your mouth and quickly turn your head away in an attempt to keep me from fishing it out of your mouth.  Or demand to eat what I have.  I was eating raw baby carrots while carrying you and you just had to have one, so I gave you one and you gnawed on it for a long time before you bit a piece off and I took it away because I was worried you would choke.  There is never a moment when I'm wishing to be anywhere other than with you.  When you are asleep I wish you were still up to snuggle and play.  Waking up to the sound of your voice and seeing your face as I walk into your room is the perfect way to start my day.  Picking you up from daycare and snuggling you up against my chest is the highlight of my day.  I live for my weekends with you and am already looking forward to my summer of nothing but Carter ALL DAY EVERY DAY!  You are the light of my life and I couldn't ask for a sweeter, more snuggly, and easy going baby.  There aren't enough seconds in the day for me to kiss you enough.  When I'm carrying you I am constantly covering your little cheeks with kisses which you thankfully still allow.  I'm not sure how much longer you will tolerate that habit!  I am thankful every second of every day that I am your mommy!  I love you forever and for always my little snuggle bug!

Now on to daddy:

Hey Bud,

You are all over the place these days! You have crawling down to a science and have even figured out your top gear. It is so funny to watch you all of a sudden take off at full speed! Standing and cruising is your big thing right now and we think that it will be only a matter of weeks before you are taking your first steps by yourself.

More and more you like to find yourself a book, pull it onto your lap and read to yourself. I really love watching you do that, especially as much as your mother and I like to read. You also are infatuated with Skippy. As soon as you see him your are laughing and smiling, pointing and saying keekat.
Just the other day, I realized that you do not lunge at Skippy like you do Harper because you have figured out that scares him off. Instead you typically take your time and inch closer and closer to him, usually stopping just out of reach. Almost as if Skippy realizes you are not going to try to grab him, he sits still and lingers while you watch him up close.

You have also started standing on your tip toes to help you see something better or reach an object that is too tall. It is fun watching you problem solve. You are also getting to where you are able to really enjoy some of the equipment at playgrounds. It is fun watching you enjoy yourself so much.

This month I was quite sick one weekend and every time you heard me throwing up in the bathroom you would come find me as quickly as you could so that you could sit with me in the bathroom. You are such a sweet boy!

Every day is better than the last buddy and I love you so much!


  1. Very cute! I love the look on his face when he sees his plate of food at the restaurant. Why is his face so red?

  2. Poor little mister sensitive skin! It's from sucking his thumb. His face is red where his hand rubs against it while he sucks his thumb.