Month 12

Dear Henry,

Baby, you’re now a year old! I can officially now use the phrase “remember that time a year ago,” and have it apply to you! I can’t believe you’re a year old. It makes me so incredibly proud and sad at the same time. Proud that you’re growing and developing, learning and flourishing. Sad because you’re no longer the itty bitty baby that we brought home from the hospital, and that time we’ll never get back.
You and me in the hospital the day after you were born

You and me in the hospital the day after you were born

You have turned into one awesome little boy. You can blow kisses and raspberries, give high 5’s and hugs and kisses. You like to play patty cake, you’re interested in taking things apart and trying to put them back together (you haven’t quite mastered that part yet, but you’ll get there!). You’re so interactive! I have so much fun playing with you. The other day you were playing quietly by yourself for a bit, and I looked over at you and couldn’t tell what you were playing with. On closer inspection I saw that you had found some of my makeup – black liquid eyeliner to be exact….and you decided to get it EVERYWHERE!
You’re also getting all over the house now. You belly crawl all through the house. You love to play in the dog’s water bowl (and I’ve even caught you drinking out of it a few times – it doesn’t matter if I give you a sippy cup full of water, you’ll still go for a sip at the dog bowl….). You’re investigating everything. The other day you got yourself up onto the fire place to check that out. You’ll make it from one end of the house to the other, and you’ll leave a trail of things that you pull out a long the way, or things that you’ll bring with you to later leave behind. You pull the books off of the bottom bookshelf, you’ll drag along cat and dog toys, and you’ll take your toys with you too from room to room. I like to let you explore on your own. I’ll check on you a lot, or trail behind you, but I love love love the fact that you’re getting more and more mobile everyday.
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You’re learning to communicate more and more. You’ve learned to sign for “more” and “milk,” and you’re starting to put together that when you sign for it, that you get what you signed for. You’ve also started saying a few words. You can say Mom (pronounced in a weird combination of mem and mam) and Dad (pronounced Dat or A-da). You can also say “no” and “up” (pronounced hup-ha).
Happies when naked and carrying around the're such a boy!

Happiest when naked and carrying around the remote…you’re such a boy!

Your doing awesome at your physical therapy! You’re starting to get onto all fours way more, and for longer periods of time too! On Saturday, your Dad and I saw that you’re beginning to crawl. You’ll inch your legs and arms forward when you’re on all fours. That had me smiling from ear to ear. It won’t be long until you’re just zooming all over the house! You’re transition from in and out of all fours is going well too. You’re starting to get out of being in all fours by twisting yourself to the side. We do need to work more on twisting yourself to your side when you get in to that position. Your neck stretches are going ok. Some days you’ll tolerate them better than others. You and I have been practicing your balance and strengthening your core by placing you on a yoga ball. I’ll hold your hips and gently roll the ball in all directions so that you have to actively change your balance to stay up right. You’re getting pretty good at it too! You’ve come so far in such a short period of time. I’m immensely proud of your progress and how hard you try.
With all that muscle building that you're doing you still need to remain flexible

With all that muscle building that you’re doing you still need to remain flexible

Feeding you continues to be the easiest thing for us. You’ll generally eat anything we put in front of you. You still don’t like tomatoes, but you do try them from time to time before you’ll hurl them from your high chair. You love to play and explore with your food, and right now I’m inclined to let you. It means your Dad and I have to clean you up a lot, but so be it. Some days you eat way more than other days, but I really do try to go by you hunger cues. I let you eat until your full, and if you don’t seem to be interested in eating, then we try again later. I’m trying really hard to never force feed you, and I don’t want to ever coax you into eating when you don’t want to. I’m hoping that this will creative a good relationship with food when you’re older.
You’re still nursing like a champ. And, I hate that I have to do this, but I’ve been forced to start the weaning process, but don’t worry, it’s going to be a long process. Since I’m not allowed to take time out of the day to pump at work anymore, I’m now pumping once a day on my lunch break. I get about 8 ounces (or at least I am right now). I don’t know how long I’ll continue to do this for, but I know that you’re no where near ready to wean for good, and honestly, neither am I. So, I’ve had to start to cut back on my pumping, which also means that we’ll have to start cutting back on actual breastfeeding too. So, we’ll go from nursing 5 times a day to only 3. I have no idea how you’re going to take this, but we’ll see how it goes. I’m hoping that it won’t upset you too much. It upsets me more than I can say. I really have enjoyed nursing you. It’s always a quiet and relaxing time for both of us. Last night when I was nursing you before bed, we both fell asleep in the rocking chair. I think I was only asleep for about 30 minutes, but your Dad came in to check on us and said that we were both dead to the world. I love nursing you. I love the extra snuggles that it provides, especially now when you’re too busy playing a lot of the time to cuddle with your Mama.
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On your actual birthday we took you to the Zoo! I slathered you in sunscreen, plopped a sunhat on your head and we loaded you up in the stroller and walked around the Zoo for about 4 hours. Your Grandparents came, as did your Great Grandparents, your Uncle Matt came and the Kathleen, Eric and their daughter Addison came too. I think you had more fun watching Addison than you did looking at some of the animals. But, I do believe that you had a blast. You liked the seals, puffins and otters the best – at least from what I could tell. They were all moving the most and you would just point and smile. It was a really fun day. There was a carousel at the the Zoo, and I paid to take you on it, but you DID NOT like it. You sat on the elephant with your arms out shaking for the first rotation, and then hurled yourself at me after that and refused to let go. But, as soon as we got off of the carousel, you were looking back at it and pointing to it acting like you wanted to have another chance on it. We’ll try again sometime soon.
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Henry – this past year has been amazing and one of the best years of my life. You and your Dad are my reasons for everything. You have truly changed my life for the better. You make me laugh and smile everyday. You give cuddles and hugs like no one else. The way you smile when you see me always melts my heart. I’m thrilled that you came into our lives and changed everything for the better. I make it a point to tell you multiple times a day that I love you, and I hope that you can feel my love and know that I’ll always be there for you, that I’ll always love you, that I only want for you to be happy in life. You’re my baby, my reason and my love.
Keep growing!

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