quinn’s 4th birthday

Quinn’s fourth birthday has come and gone and this year, her party was a smashing success. 

This is the first year we have had a birthday party outside of the home. We normally just invite a few friends over with kids and have cake and food at the house. It’s always been a lot of fun, and honestly, I prefer to have it there. I’m not into huge birthday parties at obnoxious venues that cost a fortune. It’s annoying to me that that’s what birthday parties have come to now.

But, after last year, when our tiny rowhome was taken over by rambunctious three-year-olds with nowhere to run (we don’t have a a yard and the weather wasn’t good enough to go outside anyway), we knew we would have to find somewhere indoors and away from home if we wanted to have a party. Poor Quinn and her winter birthday.

Lucky for us, there is Smith Playhouse. Smith is a wonderful, free playground and playhouse in Fairmount park that we frequent a lot in the summer. Their playground is really one of the best I have ever seen. It’s closed in the winter, but their giant play house stays open all year. And while most birthday parties are held on one of the two outdoor porches overlooking the playground, they do have one small party room they rent out for a small fee.

So, that’s what we did. We had the room for food and the kids had the run of the playhouse, which was also open to the public. Of course, not many people come to Smith in the winter, so it wasn’t very busy.

I had a slight moment of panic in the am, when I realized how small the room was and how many people were actually going to show up (almost 50!) But, it was perfect. We had them eat cake about halfway through and just let them go wild in the playroom. It was great. All of Quinn’s favorite buddies showed up and she was so excited on the way there. She could barely contain herself. She really felt so special all day, thanks to her wonderful friends and family who came to celebrate with us.

One day, when we move into a bigger house, we will definitely go back to fun house parties. The kids can go crazy in a family room or finished basement, while the parents eat food, have a cocktail and catch up on different level of the house. But, for now, our first venture into an off-site birthday party was a success. The birthday girl had a smile on her face the entire day. Of course, that’s the most important thing. 

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Yesterday was my 38th (sigh) birthday.
Even though I was pretty much home alone all day, it was a great day.
I was out of the shower, dressed with makeup on and my hair done by 10am. Quite a feat for someone on maternity leave.
I got to spend lots of time relaxing with Roo. 
The weather was gorgeous (sunny and in the 70s) so we took a long, relaxing walk around the neighborhood.
My oldest and dearest friend, Jackie called me for a long chat session while I was nursing.
My good friend Courtenay and her son Finn stopped by for a visit and they brought me delicious homemade brownies and zucchini bread.
And later, my in-laws picked up Quinn from daycare for me and brought home a delicious German chocolate cake.
Later, Jeremy arrived from work and we had a family pizza party with cake. It was perfect.
I got a hilarious card that Quinn colored and dictated for Jeremy.
Jeremy also gifted me with TWO gifts from Tiffany - a gorgeous silver ring and an “R” pendant to match the “Q” I wear everyday. Lucky girl.
He also got me candy corn, new pinot glasses and a Phillies beer ccozie.
Seriously, if that’s not every girls’ dream birthday gift bonanza, I’m not sure what is.
Thank you to my wonderful family, friends, husband and girls for making an old lady feel special on her birthday. Yesterday was my 38th (sigh) birthday.
Even though I was pretty much home alone all day, it was a great day.
I was out of the shower, dressed with makeup on and my hair done by 10am. Quite a feat for someone on maternity leave.
I got to spend lots of time relaxing with Roo. 
The weather was gorgeous (sunny and in the 70s) so we took a long, relaxing walk around the neighborhood.
My oldest and dearest friend, Jackie called me for a long chat session while I was nursing.
My good friend Courtenay and her son Finn stopped by for a visit and they brought me delicious homemade brownies and zucchini bread.
And later, my in-laws picked up Quinn from daycare for me and brought home a delicious German chocolate cake.
Later, Jeremy arrived from work and we had a family pizza party with cake. It was perfect.
I got a hilarious card that Quinn colored and dictated for Jeremy.
Jeremy also gifted me with TWO gifts from Tiffany - a gorgeous silver ring and an “R” pendant to match the “Q” I wear everyday. Lucky girl.
He also got me candy corn, new pinot glasses and a Phillies beer ccozie.
Seriously, if that’s not every girls’ dream birthday gift bonanza, I’m not sure what is.
Thank you to my wonderful family, friends, husband and girls for making an old lady feel special on her birthday. Yesterday was my 38th (sigh) birthday.
Even though I was pretty much home alone all day, it was a great day.
I was out of the shower, dressed with makeup on and my hair done by 10am. Quite a feat for someone on maternity leave.
I got to spend lots of time relaxing with Roo. 
The weather was gorgeous (sunny and in the 70s) so we took a long, relaxing walk around the neighborhood.
My oldest and dearest friend, Jackie called me for a long chat session while I was nursing.
My good friend Courtenay and her son Finn stopped by for a visit and they brought me delicious homemade brownies and zucchini bread.
And later, my in-laws picked up Quinn from daycare for me and brought home a delicious German chocolate cake.
Later, Jeremy arrived from work and we had a family pizza party with cake. It was perfect.
I got a hilarious card that Quinn colored and dictated for Jeremy.
Jeremy also gifted me with TWO gifts from Tiffany - a gorgeous silver ring and an “R” pendant to match the “Q” I wear everyday. Lucky girl.
He also got me candy corn, new pinot glasses and a Phillies beer ccozie.
Seriously, if that’s not every girls’ dream birthday gift bonanza, I’m not sure what is.
Thank you to my wonderful family, friends, husband and girls for making an old lady feel special on her birthday. Yesterday was my 38th (sigh) birthday.
Even though I was pretty much home alone all day, it was a great day.
I was out of the shower, dressed with makeup on and my hair done by 10am. Quite a feat for someone on maternity leave.
I got to spend lots of time relaxing with Roo. 
The weather was gorgeous (sunny and in the 70s) so we took a long, relaxing walk around the neighborhood.
My oldest and dearest friend, Jackie called me for a long chat session while I was nursing.
My good friend Courtenay and her son Finn stopped by for a visit and they brought me delicious homemade brownies and zucchini bread.
And later, my in-laws picked up Quinn from daycare for me and brought home a delicious German chocolate cake.
Later, Jeremy arrived from work and we had a family pizza party with cake. It was perfect.
I got a hilarious card that Quinn colored and dictated for Jeremy.
Jeremy also gifted me with TWO gifts from Tiffany - a gorgeous silver ring and an “R” pendant to match the “Q” I wear everyday. Lucky girl.
He also got me candy corn, new pinot glasses and a Phillies beer ccozie.
Seriously, if that’s not every girls’ dream birthday gift bonanza, I’m not sure what is.
Thank you to my wonderful family, friends, husband and girls for making an old lady feel special on her birthday.

Yesterday was my 38th (sigh) birthday.

Even though I was pretty much home alone all day, it was a great day.

I was out of the shower, dressed with makeup on and my hair done by 10am. Quite a feat for someone on maternity leave.

I got to spend lots of time relaxing with Roo. 

The weather was gorgeous (sunny and in the 70s) so we took a long, relaxing walk around the neighborhood.

My oldest and dearest friend, Jackie called me for a long chat session while I was nursing.

My good friend Courtenay and her son Finn stopped by for a visit and they brought me delicious homemade brownies and zucchini bread.

And later, my in-laws picked up Quinn from daycare for me and brought home a delicious German chocolate cake.

Later, Jeremy arrived from work and we had a family pizza party with cake. It was perfect.

I got a hilarious card that Quinn colored and dictated for Jeremy.

Jeremy also gifted me with TWO gifts from Tiffany - a gorgeous silver ring and an “R” pendant to match the “Q” I wear everyday. Lucky girl.

He also got me candy corn, new pinot glasses and a Phillies beer ccozie.

Seriously, if that’s not every girls’ dream birthday gift bonanza, I’m not sure what is.

Thank you to my wonderful family, friends, husband and girls for making an old lady feel special on her birthday.

and then you were three.

No longer a little baby. There is really no trace of it anymore. Maybe the fact that you are still clinging to your binky, or wearing a Pull-Up overnight will give me a fleeting, backwards glimpse, but for the most part, there is no baby left in you – only a spry, young girl. A big girl.

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This year has flown by. Even with all the harder moments of the “terrible twos”, it seemed to go by quickly. While your personality has always been pretty evident, even at a week old, it’s fun to see it magnified as the months and years go on. And while the physical changes are not as evident as they were the first or second year, with the exception of your taller, leaner legs and longer hair, your emotional changes and newfound abilities continue to fascinate me every day.

You’re funnier, smarter and to my disadvantage, more stubborn. You are figuring us out a little bit more, planning things to get your way. You’re a creature of habit. You have the do the same things over and over again, the same way until we have to break you of it. You thrive off of your routine, which can be a blessing and a curse.

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This was a year of big-time firsts for you: first time sleeping in a big girl bed, first time using the potty and more. And while we struggled with some (sleep) others were surprisingly easy for you (potty training). I always wondered how I would “teach” someone to use the potty and other random things I never thought I would have to do. But come to find out, kids are a lot more intuitive than we give them credit for.

As the months go on, you are becoming more aware that you are not a baby anymore. Your school had told us that you love to help out the younger kids in your class. You like to comfort other kids when they are upset and you are enjoying your role as one of the “big girls” in the class. I notice it at home too: the way you play with your baby dolls, the way you ask me if I’m ok when I’m coughing, the way you always asked me how my tummy was feeling when I was sick for 8 weeks during this pregnancy. You can be a stubborn goat at times, but you really are a sweet, caring soul - even though you love to act tough. You can’t fool me.

One of the best things about the past year has been your newfound verbal skills. You say things every day that leave me wondering where you may have heard it for the first time. I know I should be writing down all the things you say, and I wish I could, but honestly, I can’t keep up with you. You talk constantly and every other thing you say cracks me up. Being three years old may make you a huge pain in the butt, but right now, you are also one of the funniest people I know. And the good thing is, I don’t think it’s an accident. I mean, some of it is. But you honestly say things to try to be funny. Even your teachers have mentioned it. This, for some strange reason, makes me extremely proud. As long as you can keep your sense of humor in life, you’re going to go far.

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One of the most satisfying moments for me as a parent is the split second after you say something funny or sensitive for the first time. Your dad and I will lock eyes from across the room and exchange a quick smirk.  Those are the moments I live for. That look we exchange that says, “Did you hear what she just said?” We can’t say it out loud of course, because it would just feed into your goofball ego and spiral out of control. But it’s a moment that happens often these days and every time, it creates that moment of realization: this is what it’s all about. These are the memories.

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Of course, we also exchange similar glances when you are screaming and throwing a fit, but instead of cute smirks, we exchange rolling eyeballs and sighs. That’s a different story.

You pronounce the Philly Phanatic, “Phiwwy Phanatalick” and flamingo, “flamingalo”. You ask lots of questions and when I answer them you always say, “Oh, I see what you’re talking about.”  If I complain about something or stub my toe or drop my phone, you always respond with, “Awww, it’s ok, Mommy.” Even if I’m not really upset. 

Your likes and dislikes change almost every day. I can’t keep up with the foods you will or won’t eat, the songs you will or won’t sing or the books you insist on reading or don’t want anything to do with. And don’t get me started with your clothes. I can only imagine how much fun you will be to dress when you are 13.

But at this moment, there are a few things you continually enjoy: Hello Kitty, Little Einsteins, Minnie Mouse, Cinderella, purple, dress up clothes, 24 piece puzzles, pasta, cereal, anything chocolate, stickers, your binky,  singing Jingle Bells in the car, dancing, and of course, your baby dolls. Especially, your favorite: "Baby", who you sleep with every night and carry around everywhere you go.

You still insist I sing “The Other Song” to you every night before falling asleep. “The Other Song” is “I Will” by the Beatles, but for some reason, you don’t call it that. After I sing it 5-6 times, you ask for “The Bird Song” (Till There Was You) which I usually sing once, before dusting you with “dream dust” (so you can dream about “Hello Kitty, unicorns, kitty cats and sparkles” - your words) and kissing you goodnight.

The past few weeks, you are finally getting a little better at staying in bed at night after the lights go out and once you are out, you are out all night. Our biggest struggle now is getting you out of bed in the mornings. We have to drag your limp body out of bed every morning at 7am. You sleep in like a 15 year old boy.

You are finally getting better at brushing your teeth, one of our biggest fights. You are pretty good at putting your shoes and coat away when we walk in the door from school. You say “Thank You” on your own free will about 85% of the time, and “Please” about 50% of the time.

You go through “Daddy phases” often, usually for about a week or two at a time. And while it does make me a little sad when it’s happening, you always come back around. This morning while I was in the shower, you screamed cried and howled for Mama until you finally ran in the bathroom and tore the shower curtain back. You haven’t asked for mommy in a long time. And I would lie to say I didn’t secretly love it a little bit.

You’re full of hugs but aren’t a big kisser. You’re curious but don’t like getting into things as much as you prefer to ask a lot of seemingly mature questions. You’re still an observer, but aren’t afraid to jump into something, especially when it involves all your favorite friends - Evie, Mia, Nori, Maddie, Lily, Finn and Landon. You love watching and learning from your older friends and you love teaching and guiding (that’s a fancy way of saying “bossing”) your younger buddies. And because of that, you constantly tell me how excited you are for “our baby” to come out. I know people often say this, but truly believe you are going to be an amazing big sister. I think you were made for the job.

You’ve already broken and mended our hearts a million times over in the past three years. I know there is more to come and I can’t wait for it. All of it, the good, the bad and the ugly.

I love you, Quinn. No matter how many birthdays you manage to sneak in, or who else comes along, you will always be our baby girl.

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Still celebrating at the Please Touch Museum.

Quinn,
This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)
While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).
If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life. Quinn,
This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)
While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).
If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life. Quinn,
This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)
While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).
If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life. Quinn,
This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)
While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).
If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life. Quinn,
This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)
While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).
If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life. Quinn,
This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)
While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).
If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life. Quinn,
This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)
While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).
If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life. Quinn,
This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)
While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).
If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life. Quinn,
This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)
While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).
If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life.

Quinn,

This past Saturday, your daddy gifted me with my very first surprise birthday party. It was on a rainy night in Center City when I thought we were just going out to a casual dinner with Mike and Scott. It was also on a totally unexpected year. (Who has surprise parties when they turn 37?)

While not all our friends could make it on this stormy night, it was truly a great surprise and a very fun evening filled with good people, good food and tequila. I feel extremely special and truly blessed to have such wonderful friends and a husband who loves me so much, that he wants to surprise me on a random birthday (not just the big ones).

If there is anything I can teach you in life, it’s to surround yourself with people who want to make you feel special on the random birthdays. Not just a life partner, but also your friends. It’s the best decision you will ever make for yourself. Good love + good friends = a wonderful life.

After a soggy, humid, crummy day at work, I came home to this.
They make getting old a little easier. After a soggy, humid, crummy day at work, I came home to this.
They make getting old a little easier. After a soggy, humid, crummy day at work, I came home to this.
They make getting old a little easier.

After a soggy, humid, crummy day at work, I came home to this.

They make getting old a little easier.

So, I think Quinn is really into the whole birthday thing.

Last night, I caught her singing Happy Birthday to Elmo in her tent. Then she told him to “Have some cake!”

When she saw my phone, all she wanted to do was “Watch Quinny, happy birthday.” Which means she wants to watch the video of us singing Happy Birthday to her, over and over. She has already viewed it about 2,500 times.

I can totally see her as one of those people who has to celebrate their entire “birthday month” when she gets older. Stinker.

Getting ready for a little pizza and ice cream cake action with a small group of friends to celebrate 2 whole years on this planet. Sigh…

things I did today…

• woke up at 5:00am.

• went for a 20 mile run

(it sucked, by the way: trails and hills last 5 miles, garmin froze at mile 16, ran out of fluid at mile 17, 70 degrees, 90% humidity…I could go on.) 

• Came home and got gifts from my favorite peeps.

Love my new earrings from Quinny.

• Took a nap (no photo of this) :)

• Had a picnic in Rittenhouse Square

• Stopped at Custards and Cakes for a pumpkin milkshake (yeah…yum).

• Put Q to bed. Enjoyed some pinot noir and an antipasto from DiBruno Brothers with J.

• Turned old as dirt.

I am officially in my late 30’s. I think I may have said this last year, but I really mean it this year: it’s official. I’m ok with it though. Life is good.

Thanks again for all the birthday wishes. :)

Your daddy surprised me at work today with a birthday cake. My birthday is not until Sunday, but it’s always fun to start the celebrations early. Yay for a long birthday weekend!

daddy’s 41st birthday part 1-generation 8k run

Quinny, today is your daddy’s 41st birthday.

I’m sure you don’t remember it very well, but daddy’s big 40th birthday last year was kind of a bust. You were only 6 weeks old, so we just made a quick trip to work so they could surprise him with some cake, then we came home and daddy ran to a local bar to pick us up some chicken sandwiches. Not very exciting.

Hopefully, this year will be a little better. This morning, we met up with some good friends to run the Generation 8K Run a run that benefits Students Run Philly Style, a wonderful organization in Philly that offers marathon training to help young people succeed in life.

Our work sponsored a spot, so we gathered a team together and went down to the Naval Yard to run our 5 miles on a very chilly, Saturday morning.

The run was great. Your daddy was impressive with an overall pace of 7:32 for a 37:43 finish-not bad for a 41 year old. Your old mom didn’t do too shabby either, and finished in 42:37/8:29mm pace. I think that may be the fastest pace I have done for a race. Only 5 miles, but I’ll take it. Not bad for someone who has only run 4 times in the past month. 

Our whole team ran really well actually. I was pretty impressed with myself until I noticed all of them, except one, were already waiting for me. Great job team!

So far, his birthday has already been a million times better than last year’s. If for no other reason than you just haven’t pooped on his shirt (yet).

Tonight we have dinner with friends and tomorrow a Phillies game with Mark and Karen-can’t wait. Sorry sweet girl, you are getting all sorts of baby-sat this weekend.

Happy 41st birthday Jeremy. As always, you are the love of our lives.

I just got a text from our good friends, Karen and Mark. Karen is pregnant with their first baby who’s due on March 3rd, which was Quinn’s due date last year.

She just told me they had to a schedule a c-section for tomorrow at 11:30am. So, it looks like all the joking we did about the babies possibly ending up with the same birthday is actually not a joke at all! 

Good luck to you guys! We love you and are sending happy, healthy baby and mommy thoughts your way. And daddy too, of course.

March 1 babies are the best. 

11 months old

I can’t believe this is your last monthly update before you turn one year old.

Things have truly taken a turn this month. The developmental jumps you have made in the last 30 days have really taken us by surprise.

You went from barely crawling, to non-stop moving. Once you figured out that you don’t have to stay in the same spot all the time, you decided to take full advantage of it. Our peaceful days of setting you down and knowing you’ll stay there are long gone. You’re now crawling across the entire house with no problem and are never happy staying still.

As a matter of fact, taking these photos proved to be a little dangerous this month. I sat you in the chair and shot as many photos as I could as fast as I could before you tried to leap off the chair. On more than one occasion, I had to throw the camera down to catch you before you plopped over the edge, face-first, onto the hardwood floor.

And of course, you just laugh at me when I tell you “no” or “stay” (yes, I talk to you like a dog now). You are developing your own sense of independence and will. Sometimes this is great, other times, a little frustrating. But it’s definitely fun to watch come into fruition. I just wish when I told you “no” in a stern voice, you wouldn’t laugh right in my face. Yeah, funny game, kiddo.

You have also started pulling yourself up on EVERYTHING. It took you a few days to master, but once you did there was no turning back. You are always standing in your crib now, always pulling yourself up on your drum or my bosu ball. The other day I left you for two seconds in the sunroom and I when I walked out of the kitchen, you were standing up, holding on to the coffee table in the living room. How did you get there so fast? You’re like a tiny ninja. So stealth.

And now, your new favorite thing is the pull out your wagon and stand while holding that. You even managed to walk it across the sunroom the other day for the first time. Yes, it wont be long before you’re walking on your own. Then we’re really in for it. You are already attracted to the stairs and every electrical wire in the house. You had your first stumble down the step at daycare Monday and have the giant scratch on your nose and bruise on your forehead to prove it. I know there are many, many more to come.

You are also suddenly, a kissing-champion. They are open-mouthed and sloppy, but you proudly give them nonetheless. You give me and daddy a big smooch whenever we ask and also love to give kisses to your teddy bear. Every time you ride with him in your wagon, you plant a big old sloppy one on his nose before you head off on your little jaunt around the living room. It’s pretty sweet, although I think your daddy wants to have a heart attack every time he see’s you smooching things all willy-nilly.

You are babbling up a storm, but only saying, “mama”, “dada”, and “baba” regularly. And I think “baba” is the only one you can truly associate. It’s pretty funny whenever we mention the word “baba” you stop what you’re doing and repeat it in a whisper but like you’re announcing it - “babaaaaaaa”. Heh.

You eat a ton and pretty much anything we give you, although I have to say, you don’t really care for Puffs as much as you did a month ago. I guess just because you are so use to eating things with more flavor now. You still like a jar of pureed food every now and then and especially love it when I hand you the spoon so you can feed yourself. And Lord, help us all if we stick you in the high chair without food ready. The screams that come out of your little body sometimes amaze me.

What else? You high-five now. You also try to open and close every single cabinet and drawer we pass by. You nod your head yes when I ask you a question, although, I don’t think you know what it means yet. When I ask you, “Where’s the baby?” on a jar of food, you point right to it and smile. You feed yourself a bottle now and you’ve mastered the sippy-cup. You LOVE bouncing to music and beat the drum with your drumsticks. You are sleeping through the night like a champ and taking reliable 2-3 hours naps daily.

And you LOVE to charm people. It’s actually kind of ridiculous. There is not a shy bone in your body. One of your favorite things to do is look at strangers and flash them “the scrunchy nose” and make them laugh. It works every time. You flash it, they laugh and dote all over you and tell you how adorable you are and you eat it up. What a ham.

Of course, with all this developing personality, it’s not all fun and games. There are some new habits that aren’t as cute. Like the SCREAMING to get something you want (mostly food). The grabbing yourself non-stop on the changing table when I am changing a dirty diaper (I’ve become better at pinning your arms like a wrestler). The constant standing up in the bathtub no matter how many times I plop you back down and tell you to sit (which results in more of you laughing in my face). There’s the non-stop drooling and snotty nose. The hitting and grabbing at my face while you’re nursing. This list gets longer as the days go on.

And of course, there is still the “hairy eyeball”.

But, that’s just part of the deal. The problem is not that you are developing bad habits, but more of us just trying to figure out how to deal with your growing and changing personality. You’re a baby. That’s how this whole thing works. If anything, you are teaching us patience in ways we never thought we would be able to manage.

We’re actually really lucky. You are a very sweet, well-behaved, girl who loves to share and make people laugh. Oh, how I hope those tendencies stay with you. What wonderful characteristics to have.

Happy 11 months baby girl. I can’t believe next month we’ll be talking in “years”.

8 months old

Crazy things are happening at 8 months, Quinny.

You seem like such a big girl all the sudden. Of course, I say that every month, but it never ceases to amaze me.

This month you can sit completely unassisted for long periods of time. You take a topple every now and then, but mostly when you are trying to reach something.

When you lay on the ground, you don’t just stay in one spot anymore. You roll around like crazy. And all the sudden, you can hang out on your stomach and push yourself up high, just like we were always afraid you would never do from our lack  of discipline with tummy-time. Moral of the story: yes, tummy time is important, but if your baby hates it, don’t freak out. They will come around when they are ready.

Lately, you are talking up a storm. Some days you don’t say much, and others we can’t get you to stop. You babble a lot, but a lot of your babbles have turned into actual “baby words”. The three you have mastered: “ba-ba”, “uh-oh” and, of course, “da-da”. Every time you say “da-da” I try to get you to say “ma-ma” but only get a more enthusiastic “da-da” in response from you. Typical. Stinker.

That’s ok though, this morning when your daddy was holding you, I walked into the room and you reached for me, which was a first. I acted like it was no big deal, but inside my heart soared. It was the first time you really reached out for your mama and it made my life.

You can also clearly recognize your own name now, which is pretty cool. We call to you from another room, and you turn and give us the “sup?” look.

Speaking of us leaving the room, suddenly, this is something you are NOT cool with. I think you have finally figured out who we are and have come to think if we leave the room or pass you off to someone else, we are never going to come back for you.

We use to be able to set you down with a few toys or let someone else hold you and you’d be fine for a bit, but not so much anymore. It’s especially evident now that your poor Grandma has been here the past few days. You are NOT happy with her holding you if your dad or I are in the room. This is kind of difficult since it’s nice to have another pair of hands around to help with you, but it also kind of melts my heart to suddenly see you take such a fancy to us and decide we are officially your favorite people.

Other fun things:

When you are trying to see something far away, you crane your neck all the way to the side as if doing this will help you see a little bit better. You especially love to do it when your daddy enters or leaves a room.

You give flirty stares to people now. You love to flash the “sweet eye” and then a sly smile when they tell you how cute you are. Watch out boys.

You just started to figure out how to scoot. The other night you decided you wanted a particular toy and as you were sitting, you started rocking as hard as you could to move yourself closer to it. Eventually, all this rocking and rolling got you what you wanted and was met by thunderous applause from your father and I. Which of course, startled you and you haven’t done it since.

You have been feeding yourself small foods, mostly Baby Mum Mums, Organic Puffs and Cheerios as real finger food still kind of leaves you confused. You have gotten pretty good at the pincer hold. Of course, most of it ends up on the floor, but that’s ok.

We also, finally, graduated from the swaddles to a sleep sack this month. You are able to finally sleep with both arms free without waking yourself up. This is good since I wondered if we were going to have to ship your swaddles off to college with you. 

The one thing that has changed for the worse this month: when you wake up in the middle of the night now, you are WIDE awake and it takes forever to get you back down. We are seriously going to have to work on some sleep training this week after G-ma leaves. I can’t function properly on 4.5 hours of broken-up sleep a night anymore.

But, as usual, the good overwhelmingly outweighs the bad. We are having so much fun with you every day and it’s a joy to watch you grow into such a wonderful, funny, sweet human being. Your personality is starting to shine as the days go on and we love every moment of it.

Happy 8 months Baby Bean.

Quinny, life has been crazy-hectic the past few weeks. The whole working full-time/marathon training thing, as well as other daily duties are really starting to cut into my Bean-time. It’s actually starting to take it’s toll on me a little. I have no time to fit in all the things in the day I need to do. It’s exhausting. You still wake up 2-4 times a night. That’s exhausting. I’m so, so tired.

Your 8 month birthday came and went Monday. No time for photos or a lengthy progress report here. Hopefully in a few days baby girl.

Last night, I found this picture of you that I had never seen before in your daddy’s phone. No matter how tired and frustrated I am, seeing things like this make it all worth it. I can’t even believe you were ever once this tiny. Where has the time gone?

I love you Quinny. Happy belated 8 month birthday.