Nora Monthly

12 Months of Nora

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Woooowwweeee am I late on this! Like almost a month late?! Definitely the latest I’ve been on any of these updates, but it’s the last one soooo…. Oh well. Nora is officially ONE (and has been for almost a month hahah) and we’re headed straight for toddlerhood! I feel like we were just here with Jameson and now it’s Nora’s turn. It goes so so quickly!

Here’s what’s new for Nora in her twelfth month!

Weight & Length: She had her one-year-old well visit to the doctor just after she turned one and everything looks great! She’s in the 17th percentile for height (2 ft, 4.25 in) and the 32nd for weight, weighing in at 18 lbs 11 oz. Little peanut! This was actually about a pound less than last month which either means my home scale isn’t too accurate or she lost a little weight (could be possible with how active she is/how she’s scaling back on her nursing). Our pediatrician isn’t concerned at all, though, and Nora is meeting or exceeding all of her milestones.

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Clothing: Still in 12 month or 12-18 month things, although some things from Old Navy have to be the 6-12 month size since she’s tiny. I finally got her some long-sleeved shirts and dresses since it’s cooling down over here, especially in the morning. But I cannot find shoes for her that I like! I feel like this shouldn’t be too hard but it is. Her feet are small and skinny that almost everything in her size I’ve found is like…a fake shoe. Like the ones you put on infants. No support or padding whatsoever, just these flimsy little pieces of cotton. And the few other options I’ve found in her size are covered in hot pink glitter or gaudy flowers and that ain’t gonna fly with me. So the hunt is still on for Nora’s first real pair of shoes and I’ll keep you all posted because I know this is absolutely riveting.

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Eyes & Hair: The two things she gets complimented on the most. 🙂 I would say the hair even more so these days because of how insanely curly it is! I’ve been researching in my spare time on how to care for curly hair and it’s way more intense and technical than I ever would’ve thought. High porosity versus low porosity, protein needs, the science behind sulfates and silicones and parabens…not to mention all the categories of curly hair types. I think I’ve figured out that her hair is type 3a/3b and I know I’ll be avoiding anything with sulfates/silicones/parabens to try and keep her curls as healthy as possible. But that’s about it so far. Her hair is still very babyish and not grown in thickly enough for me to do much else yet. And besides, I realize that curly hair is an ever-changing beast anyway haha! I’ll probably be trying new products and techniques for as long as I’m in charge of her hair care. Hopefully I find something that works well so I can give her a good start on loving her curls.

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How it looks just after a bath.
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Such beautiful baby blues!

Sleep: We had a rough patch of sleep this month where she was napping 40 minutes per day TOTAL for almost a week straight. It was absolutely exhausting for all of us. But she’s since gotten back into the swing of things, napping for maybe 3 hours total per day split into two naps, although not necessarily split evenly. She sleeps fairly well at night too but still wakes up eaaaarly, like 5:30-6am. Yay.

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Eating: She is such a joy to feed! Complete opposite of her brother at this age. She will try anything and likes almost everything, even broccoli. I’m writing this a little after her first birthday/party so she had her first official dessert (a piece of cake) and she loved it of course! Her favorite food in the world is probably blueberries but she’ll seriously eat whatever and gets mad if you don’t share. She’s starting to notice if I give her something different than the rest of us have and boy does she get peeved. She usually nurses before naps but that’s about it. The rest is solid foods!

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Milestones: She’s walking so much these days! In typical Nora fashion she just up and decided she could do it out of nowhere, with barely any warning. One day a couple weeks ago she decided she preferred walking to crawling and now exclusively walks around the house. She can stand by herself straight up from the ground and her balance is getting better too, although she’s still adorably clumsy. She points at everything as if asking the names for things, and likes to copy the words I say. She has six teeth total now (four on top, two on bottom) and can climb stairs (and into the ottoman) at lightning speed!

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Communication: She knows the sound for lions (“What does the lion say, Nora?” “Rrrrrr!”) and said her first official word this month, “up!” No surprise there haha! Now she says a few things independently (“mama” and “dada” and “no no” and “ah dun” for all done) and will say “Jame” for Jameson if I model it for her. And like I said, she’ll copy many of the words we say. She is so careful to observe my mouth when I’m talking to see how I form the sounds and I can tell she’ll be quite the chatterbox when she’s older. She’s sooo loud and pretty much constantly chattering on about something or other in her own language (“weedoeweedoe!”). It’s adorable and her little voice is so cute and small. She understands so much of what we say and it’s been fun to interact and play more!

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Loves: Climbing inside our big ottoman to play with the DVDs, crawling all over the bed or couch, climbing up into Jameson’s toddler bed and jumping, moseying around under the kitchen table and chairs, trying to get inside the dishwasher, taking all the wet clothes out of the dryer as I’m trying to load it up, reading books, playing outside, FOOD, shouting about things, dancing to music, Alex’s guitar playing, climbing inside the fridge and/or freezer, and bath time.

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Hates: Crawling on grass (she bear crawls so her knees won’t touch, or just stands up instead). When I tell her no about something she was psyched about (she will just fold in half and lay her head on the floor and cry, it’s so sad and ridiculous). When you strap her into her carseat (after we get going she’s fine). And sitting still for more than a few seconds (church time is heading into the challenging stage since we have family-integrated services and keep the kids with us for the whole time). She also hates when I am not holding her almost 24/7.

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Things I want to remember: How you copy everything that Jameson does and laugh every time Jameson laughs (even when you don’t know what was funny). How you crawl really fast with your mouth in a wide open smile, breathing really loudly, towards exciting things. How you point at everything and say “da” quite confidently, as if that is the name for everything. How proud you get when you walk around by yourself. The way you gently rest your little fuzzy head on Daddy’s shoulder when he comes home from work. How you jump away all wide-eyed from contraband items when you’re caught and I shout, “Hey Nora what are you doing!!!!” The way you dance along to goofy songs or beats I make up on the spot. And that hilarious/creepy face you keep doing with your tongue (you stick it out just a bit and wiggle it really fast back and forth hahaha).

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The creepy tongue face haha!

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From when we went to Mother Nature’s Farm on her first birthday.

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Nora, this year with you has been so filled with love and fun and giggles and happiness. You bring SUCH joy to our lives and complete our family in ways we didn’t even know we needed. I’ve learned so much about who God is calling me to be through knowing you and for that I am forever thankful. I hope you had a wonderful first trip around the sun, my littlest love! Here’s to year two! ❤

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Nora Monthly

Eleven Months of Nora

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Well this is it, folks! The last Nora update before she turns ONE!!! (*sob*) After that I’ll switch to yearly updates for her like I do with Jameson. I’ll still post other things here and there and I’m hoping to keep up with some school-related posts too, since I just started homeschool preschool with Jameson this week. 🙂

This year has honestly gone by so fast. Twelve months is nothing. It absolutely flew. Here’s what’s new for our sweet NoJo girl at eleven months old…

Weight & Length: She’s right around 19 pounds (about a pound more than last month) but I won’t know about her length and percentiles until next month at her one-year-old appointment (I honestly thought I typed that by mistake for a second, HOW IS SHE ALMOST ONE THO?!).

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Clothing: She’s in 12 month clothes for the most part now unless it’s from Old Navy or Gymboree and then it’s their 6-12 month size. I have yet to buy her (or Jameson) any fall/winter clothes since it’s still soooo hot here. Like 100 degrees every day. In a way, though, that’s good because by the time we need long sleeves and pants in AZ all the fall stuff will be on sale so I’ll be able to buy it for cheap! Probably the only good thing about missing out on the nice fall weather. 😦

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Probably my favorite outfit that she’s ever worn. Or that anyone has ever worn.

Eyes & Hair: Eyes are still blue and hair is still wildly curly! As my sister put it the other day, “Wow, Nora’s hair is getting so…tall.” Hahaha. It is. It’s tall. And wide. It’s becoming a bit of a fro, actually. And if there’s no product in it she looks like a fuzzy little dandelion. I love it though!!! I love seeing her big fluffy hair bopping all over the house! Just kills me dead. We switched to curly-hair-specific shampoo this month but I haven’t gotten her any conditioner yet. It seems to be working for the time being, as long as I also put some of her Shea Moisture Kids Curling Butter Cream in it. The problem is her hair is so fine that it doesn’t hold product very well. That, combined with the fact that she’s a baby and she’s constantly wrestling and rolling and smashing her head into pillows or whatever, means that her hair is most often a giant fluffball. I feel like we’re just going to be in a kind of awkward fuzzy stage for awhile until she gets more volume and length. Which, because her ringlets are so tight, could be a loooong time.

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How her hair looks with no product in it haha! My little dandelion. ❤

Sleep: Her naps are fairly consistently good (an hour and a half in the morning around 9am, and an hour and a half in the afternoon around 1 or 2). She goes to bed for the night around 7:30 and is up and at ’em by 6am or 6:30 at the latest. She quit waking up and trying to party in the middle of the night, but she does still wake up around 4am wanting to nurse. Alex brings her into our bed and we snuggle until she wakes up for real a little later. I’m giving her until she turns one with this habit and then I think we’re going to try and break it. She definitely doesn’t need to nurse during the night but I know it’s more of a comfort thing so I’m okay with it for a little while longer.

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Eating: She looooves to eat! She’ll shout at you if she notices you’re eating something and not sharing with her. We’ve let her try most everything we eat by now, except for peanut butter, honey, and desserts. She’ll get a cupcake on her birthday, though, and I’m so excited to see how she reacts! She doesn’t even know that kind of food exists! She still nurses here and there throughout the day, and still likes her 4am feed like I said. No end in sight for breastfeeding and that’s just fine with me!

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Milestones:  She’s standing independently for long periods of time now and has even attempted to take a step several times! She doesn’t quite have the balance and coordination for it yet but it’s coming soon. She got THREE new teeth this month (the top two and the one right next to them on the right…I have no idea what it’s called hahah). She’s also still getting the one on the left. It’s been…rough. Teething makes for a cranky and clingy Nora, who is already inclined to clinginess. She’s been in my arms most of the month and it’s been exhausting. But she’s got three new teeth to show for it and hopefully after this last one busts through she’ll be in a better mood.

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Communication: I can tell she understands a lot of familiar words and I think I’ve seen her sign “milk” a couple of times. She also tries to wave her finger for “no, no, no” and will remind herself of the off-limit areas just like Jameson used to do when he was a baby. Her babbling has changed this month and sounds more like jargon (“weedoe beedoe” instead of just “dadada” or “mamama”). She copies Jameson as often as she can and she loves to play “Where’s Nora?”

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Loves: Food and drinking water from her sippy cup, wrestling Jameson, music and dancing, pulling all the books off the shelves (especially the paperback ones), throwing all our DVDs out of the ottoman, chasing the vacuum, playing with things she shouldn’t touch, baths, reading (favorites are “Brown Bear Brown Bear” and a touch and feel baby animals book we have), and jumping on the little trampoline my parents have at their house.

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“Why can’t I go in yet?!”

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Hates: When I leave the room without her, when we make her lay still for diaper changes, and being left out of things. She’s also getting a lot more sensitive to things that are a little scary (she got scared watching the movie “Up” the other day).

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The face she makes when I do something so rude, like chop vegetables instead of pick her up.

Things I want to remember: How you come a’running immediately after you hear the bath turn on. How you do the choreographed moves that Jameson and I made up to the end of “A Spoonful of Sugar.” How you wiggle excitedly when I get a book out to read to you. How you love to share everything with me (if you’re chewing a toy, you’ll give me a taste. If you’re enjoying your meal, you’ll hand me a bite). How sometimes you hand me nothing at all but wait and stare expectantly at me until I say thank you. How you give me a kiss every time we get to the bunny page in your touch and feel book. How cute you look playing “Where’s Nora” with your dress during diaper changes. How you can hold your own during wrestling matches with Jameson. And how you love to give Daddy hugs when he comes home from work.

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J & N

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Beggin’ for food.

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She always bear crawls outside haha!

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Would plummet off the couch if I let her.

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Oh Nora baby, I can’t believe you’re almost one! This year has been the best of our lives because of you. I can’t wait to see how much you grow in this last month before your very first birthday! We love you so, sweet girl.

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Nora Monthly

Ten months of Nora

IMG_3712Another month with this little beauty and life is so sweet! Nora is so different from her brother at this age in so many ways…she’s much gentler, much more snuggly, much more cautious about things. While Jameson loved to be tossed in the air as high as we would let him go, Nora prefers to be in my arms or quietly reading a book on my lap. I love getting to see her personality and experiencing this stage in parenting all over again with her unique qualities.

Here’s what’s new for Nora at ten months…

Weight & Length: No well visit until her one year old appointment so I’m not sure of her percentiles at this point, but I weighed her at home and she’s right around 18 pounds! About half a pound more than last month. 🙂

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Clothing: She’s still in size 4 diapers and the 9 month range for clothes, but I’m guessing she’ll be heading into 9-12 month stuff soon if I can find it. She might just have to jump into the 12 month size though. Getting soo big!

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Eyes & Hair: Blue eyes and curly brown hair…and getting curlier by the day! I’ve been using Shea Moisture Kids Curling Butter Cream (which smells amazing) to help define her curls, because otherwise the frizz is unreal. I love it when she wakes up from a good nap, though, and her hair is sticking up in fuzzy ringlets haha! So cute. We’ve found that washing her hair just a couple times a week is enough, whereas Jameson’s hair used to get greasy in like a day. Too much washing dries Nora’s hair out. I’m planning on switching her to a curly hair specific shampoo/conditioner product soon, but the Honest Company body wash is doing the trick for now. Her hair is still baby-fine so it’s not a huge deal yet.

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Sleep: Her nap schedule is just fine (an hour and a half in the morning, an hour and a half in the afternoon, occasionally a 40 minute catnap around 5pm). But she’s been waking up preeeetty consistently around 5:30am every morning. Or earlier. It’s been rough. There have also been a few nights where she woke up at like 2am for no particular reason and was just…awake. Ready to party. We’ve never had to deal with this before and I have to say, I’m not a fan. Jameson had his rough patches where he’d wake up a few times a night, but he always went right back down. Nora on the other hand…Alex has literally taken her out to the living room and just let her play for an hour or so in the dead of night because she was just wide awake. I’m not really sure how to fix this. Mostly I’m just waiting and praying it’s a phase haha! But if it doesn’t resolve on its own soon, we’re going to have to take some drastic measures because we all need more sleep around here.

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Eating: This has been the biggest change this month, I think. Nora LOVES food!!! It is so strange and joyous to have a child who actually enjoys eating. We haven’t found anything that she doesn’t like, besides bananas. Literally anything else we put in front of her she chows down on…all types of vegetables, super savory meats, and especially fruits. She will actually YELL at us if we don’t share what we have, or if we don’t give her more food instantly when she’s finished what’s in front of her. I still let her nurse whenever she wants to (usually right before naps) but she eats the rest of her meals with us, usually just sharing food from my plate or Jameson’s. Right now I’m trying to take advantage of her willingness to try a wide variety of things and give her plenty of healthy options!

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Probably about to eat that blade of grass.

Milestones: She can stand by herself for brief amounts of time now! Usually only if we stand her up and prompt her to, though. It’s sort of like how she was with rolling and crawling…I knew she could do it before she actually gave it a shot. I think she just likes to be a little more confident before she tries things on her own. She can also cruise around the furniture, crawls super fast, and climbs up stairs. She’s getting really good with her fine motor skills (she’s especially good at finding minuscule items off the floor to shove in her mouth), and…drumroll please…SHE HAS TEETH! Her two little bottom ones popped through this month, finally! Her smile already looks so different with those little chompers and I’m excited for her to get more. Although…not excited about all the side effects of teething, heh.

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Teeth!

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Communication: She claps, waves, gives kisses, and responds with gestures to certain things (“How big is Nora?” she lifts her arms up for “soooo big!”). She babbles (and shouts) all the time; she’s really so. dang. loud. Even when she’s happy haha! She’s starting to understand a lot of what we say, and I’ve been working somewhat consistently on showing her some Sign Language. Simple stuff like “more” and “all done” and “milk” for now. I’m hoping she’ll pick up on some of them soon so she can quit yelling at us about food hahah.

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“Sooo big!”

Loves: Food and her sippy cup, bath time, her family, reading books (especially “Brown Bear Brown Bear What Do You See”), music, playing with my wallet, climbing stairs, going swimming, playing with things she’s not supposed to touch, trying to climb into the dishwasher, flipping through our paperback books, riding in the laundry basket when I pull her and Jameson around, playing in our DVDs, and whatever toy/book/literally any item at all that Jameson is currently holding.

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Hates: When I’m not holding her, when you take away contraband items, sleeping in past 5:30am.

Snapseed 30IMG_3161Things I want to remember: How you drink from your sippy cup like a little hamster, how you peek over the side of your carseat and giggle at Jameson in the car, how you crawl to my feet and then just sit there waiting for me to pick you up, how you swing your head around wildly looking for Jameson when I take you out of your room after a nap, the way you crawl all over the big bed with excitement and then shriek with glee when I grab your leg and pull you back towards me, and how you lift one arm to me in a wave and smile your cheesiest smile whenever you do something you’re sure is really cool. 🙂Snapseed 26Snapseed 27Processed with VSCO with b3 presetSnapseed 22Processed with VSCO with b3 presetSnapseed 23Processed with VSCO with b3 presetIMG_3171IMG_3165IMG_3218IMG_3333IMG_3365IMG_3405IMG_3463IMG_3497IMG_3500IMG_3530IMG_3581

 

 

 

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Nora’s first ponytail ❤

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We adore you, sweet girl! You’re even cute when you wake up at 5am. But let’s work on that this next month. 😉

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Nora Monthly

Nine months of Nora

IMG_3139I’m writing this a little late but I wanted to wait until Nora had her nine month well visit at the doctors to see where she lands in the percentiles. I feel like this month was a big one in terms of her milestones, and we’re getting to see more and more of her sweet personality each day! Of course there have been some tough moments this month too (thank you, teething) but for the most part Nora is just the cutest ball of joy around!

Here’s what’s new this month…

Weight & Length: At her appointment yesterday Nora weighed in at 17 lbs, 5 oz which is only a few ounces more than last month. She seems to be slowing down a bit in her weight gain but still moving along! She’s in the 42nd percentile for height, 34th for weight, and 30th for head circumference. A little on the smaller side but still very healthy. 🙂 I can’t believe her next appointment will be her one year checkup!!! What!

Clothing: Still in size 4 diapers and 9 month clothing, unless it’s from Gymboree or Old Navy which both have the 6-12 month size. I just got her some cute new stuff from Gymboree’s big summer sale (since, you know, it’ll still be 500 degrees here until October) and I love her in everything. She’s wearing one of the outfits for these pictures actually.

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Eyes & Hair: Eyes are still a gorgeous blue and her hair has exploded into ringlets this month! I mean we knew it was curly but it was mostly just on the top of her head before. Now there are curls eeeeverywhere! I’ve been researching curly hair care because I’m a nerd and also because I have no idea where to even begin with curls. I’ve never dealt with this before. Apparently it’s an entirely different ballgame. Special shampoos, special conditioners, detanglers, combs, leave in products, curling creams, ah!!! It’s like a new species of hair to me. SO many rules, too, like don’t towel-dry it and only wash it once or twice a week at the most and NEVER go near it with a brush unless you want your child to look like a frizzball. We’re still getting away with our regular head-to-toe baby wash stuff but we’re almost to the point now where I know I’m going to have to find something curl-specific. I can tell it dries her hair out to use. I bought some of the Shea Moisture kids curling cream stuff to use when I need her hair to calm down before we go out into the world (because otherwise she looks like little orphan Nora) and it works really well but I’m sure there’s going to be a lot of trial and error in this department before we figure out what works best for her hair. The main thing is, though, I really want her to love her curls. Not just tolerate them. I want her to be so thankful God gave her curls. I know too many people who hate their curly hair because they’ve grown up thinking it was a hassle or too frizzy or too BIG. I want to find what works well for Nora and teach her to love this beautiful hair because it really is so beautiful already. I can’t wait to see how it grows in. 🙂

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Sleep: We’ve had good days and bad days this month. Mostly, I think, due to teething. (I swear she’s getting her bottom teeth in finally, it’s just a matter of time haha!) She takes two naps a day in general, one around 9am and another around 1-2pm depending on how long the morning nap was. Then she’s down for the night around 7:30 or 8. Occasionally she’ll still add in a short evening nap around 5pm if she’s had a crappy napping day but I try not to let her do that if she can make it to bedtime because otherwise she has trouble settling down for the night. She wakes up around 4am still to nurse, at which point Alex brings her to me in bed and she finishes off the night with us until around 6-6:30am. Or, you know, she’ll just wake up at 5 and be ready to party. Good times. When do kids start sleeping in? Never?

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She still naps in the Ergo when we’re out and about. 🙂

Eating: Good news, people!!! Nora likes food! I would even say (in hushed tones, so she doesn’t hear me) that she actually enjoys when it’s time to eat. There are very few things that she actually spits out now. Her current favorites are blueberries (really all fruit except bananas), plain Cheerios, chicken, applesauce, oatmeal, any type of bread, Puffs, yogurt melts (but oddly, not really regular yogurt), and last week I let her try some of Jameson’s French toast and she was really digging that. Basically she likes anything that isn’t pureed and preferably that she can pick up and eat by herself. She’s not a fan of spoon-feeding, which is quite fine by me. She doesn’t eat enough of anything to actually fill her up, it’s really more for exploration at this point and we breastfeed for the rest of her meals.IMG_2793IMG_2340Milestones: She started “normal crawling” (as opposed to her army crawling) just after 8 months and she’s gotten pretty fast now! She can get from crawling to sitting and back to crawling with ease. She pulls herself up on ev.ery.thing. She cruises left to right on furniture and can stand up on her own if she’s holding onto something with one hand. I thought she was going to take her time with all of this but it’s like as soon as she figured out she could crawl, she got super brave and everything else followed quickly along! She has so much more freedom now with being able to move around the way she wants to and loves roaming around exploring, or following me and Jameson all over the house. Still, though, no teeth! I keep thinking one is going to bust through any day because her bottom gums are super swollen, but nothing so far! I like her gummy bear smile though. 🙂

Processed with VSCO with g2 presetProcessed with VSCO with b1 presetSnapseed 21Communication: She can clap and wave, “sings” along whenever music comes on, gives kisses when you ask for them (sometimes), and has certain sounds she makes at certain times…kind of like “pre-words” I guess. For example, she always says “mama” when she’s sad. Based on what I know from my schooling as a speech-language pathologist, I know that true words don’t emerge until closer to a year old. But it’s still cute that she’s starting to get there. 🙂 She can understand quite a bit now too and I’ve started working on teaching her some sign language, since babies tend to be able to communicate with that several months before spoken words. IMG_2399Loves: Finding wires, trying to play in Charlie’s dog food and water, books, the little toy piano, music, snacks, playing in our DVDs, sleeping on her side or belly, playing in the diaper bag, BLUEBERRIES, her sippy cup, anything having to do with water, and her family. IMG_2255IMG_2962

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Just loves being near her brother so much!

Hates: Loud, sudden noises. Being away from me for too long. When Jameson has something she wants (which is always).

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“Why haven’t you picked me up yet?!”

Things I want to remember: The Chubby Mermaid (when you lay on your side and sort of prop yourself up with one hand like a chubby little mermaid), your new tongue face (lips pursed, tongue just barely peeking out), the “bababa” thing you do when we start taping your lips with our palms, how Jameson brings you toys when you’re sad and says “I tryin’ to make Nora happy,” the kickstand (when you sit up but hold yourself there with one hand), all the funny (and not-so-funny) ways you wake me up in the morning (pulling my hair, sitting above me and shouting, smiling wide and breathing heavily just inches from my face), and the way you and Jameson are becoming real buddies.

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The tongue face.

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I call this one “teething sucks.”

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Nora, you are just so much fun! You make us laugh and fill us with joy and add so many wonderful things to our family. We love you forever, sweet girl.

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Nora Monthly

Eight months of Nora

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I can’t believe I’m writing this already! Nora is far too close to her first birthday than I would like her to be. In my head she was just born the other day…but then I look at her compared to my friends’ brand new babies and oh my, she’s just so big already! I realize she’s not as much of a baby as I think she is.

Of course, I love all the things she can do now; I’m so proud of my sweet little NoJo girl. But her babyhood is going so much faster than it even did with her brother’s and it’s just not fair! Someone tell me how to fix this?!

Anyway, here’s what’s new for our Nora Joy this month…

Weight & Length: Again, I won’t know her percentiles until she has her 9 month appointment (although I’m guessing she’ll still be ranking taaaaallllll for her age). But I weighed her at home and she’s right around 17 pounds, about a pound bigger than last month!

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Clothing: All 9 month stuff now, or 6-9 month if it runs big. Only if it runs big. She’s so long! Summery girl clothes are where it’s at, man. They’re so easy. A cute snap-on romper and a bow and you’re really all set. It’s so much fun dressing her in bright patterns and pretty florals!

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Jameson’s face in this one hahaha

Eyes & Hair: Blue-eyed and cuuuuurrrlyyyy! So so curly! It’s starting to curl up all over her head but especially on the top. There is no containing it anymore. If you try to brush it down, it flies back up in an angry frizz. Someone is going to have to teach me how to style these curls because I have a feeling I’ll be way out of my element as soon as it grows in more haha! I love it so much, though, my sweet curly girly.

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Sleep: She’s somewhere between two and three naps a day, depending on the times she goes down and the length of each nap. She naps for a couple of hours in the morning and then a couple more hours (or longer) in the afternoon. Sometimes she’ll supplement this with a quick 40 minute nap around 5pm to get her to bedtime around 7:30. It just depends on the day. At night she sleeps for her long stretch in her crib and then Alex or I will bring her to bed with us when she wakes up to nurse around 4-5am. Then she’s up and at ’em by 5:30 or 6am which is SOOOO FUNNNN. Actually it’s usually not too big of a deal because Alex is up and getting ready for work by then anyway so he’ll just hang out with her in the living room until Jameson and I get up around 6:30. It’s still too early for my liking but this is where we are in life haha.

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Eating: I want to say we’ve made a breakthrough with solid foods but that might be a bit of an overstatement. We have made some improvement though! Basically we discovered that Nora just flat out hates baby food. All baby food. Doesn’t matter which kind. We tried so many. But she does enjoy trying regular table food. I think it must be something to do with the texture of pureed baby food and if I’m remembering correctly, Jameson wasn’t one for the pureed stuff either. He just wasn’t so darn dramatic about it haha. So now we’re trying more of a baby-led weaning approach (although still nowhere near cutting out breastfeeding), letting her discover foods on her own and giving her small bits of the things we eat. So far she likes apple slices, rice, bread, blueberries, Cheerios, really most fruits (not too many veggies yet), and of course the infamous Puffs. I never met a kid who didn’t like Puffs. I’ve been nursing her at her normal times and then letting her play and explore different foods each time Jameson and I sit down for a meal. It’s been working fairly well but hopefully next month I’ll have a much longer list to share of the things she likes because it’s still pretty limited at this point.

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Milestones: She’s getting better with her fine motor skills from all that practice with self-feeding. She’s also so fast at army crawling now! She can sit up completely independently and can move from sitting to laying down/army crawling whenever she wants to (albeit, not very gracefully). She gets up on her hands and knees all the time and can move one of her legs forward but still hasn’t figured out the mechanics of regular crawling yet. I bet within the next week or two she’ll have it down. She does this funny plank thing now where she’ll hold herself up on her hands and toes and just sort of stay there suspended in the air for a few seconds haha. She can climb onto my lap if I’m sitting on the floor near her (which she pretty much always chooses to do because homegirl is mama-obsessed) and sometimes she tries to pull herself to stand if there’s something sturdy (or not-so-sturdy, ugh) in front of her. I’m thinking it’ll be awhile before she gets that mastered, but she has surprised me in the past. It’s crazy to think back on Jameson at eight months because he was full-on standing up on his own by this point and cruising around the furniture. He took his first independent steps the following month! Nora is taking it slower which I’m so thankful for because it was absolutely terrifying watching my eight month old trying to stand and walk and climb all over everything haha.

Ps, no teeth yet. She’s still the gummiest gummy bear in all the land.

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Plankin’

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Her little tongue is my fave

Communication: She’s such a chatterbox and loves watching my mouth form sounds and words. I think she might be trying to figure out waving but it’s hard to tell whether she’s really copying or her arm is just flailing around. She knows her own name for sure and I think she’s starting to understand a lot of the other things we say too, like “hi” and “no touch” (although she pays no heed to that).

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Loves: Mommy. Nothing else compares. She whines when I leave the room, when I walk past her without picking her up, when someone else is holding her but she can see me close by. She wants to be in my arms at. all. times. My hip is permanently sore from carting her around but I can’t say no to that face! So she ends up coming along with me for almost everything. But she does also love baths (and now the pool!), playing with books, watching Jameson or our dog Charlie, listening to Alex play guitar, chasing this rogue yellow balloon we have roaming around our house (leftover from Alex’s birthday back in March, lolz), army crawling around to explore (especially the playroom where not much is off-limits to her), banging out “tunes” on the baby piano, gnawing on raw carrots, and sleeping on her tummy (which is adorable).

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Hates: Getting her ears cleaned. When you wipe under her chins (yes, chins). When you take away a toy or other item of interest from her. When she has to get dressed. When I’m in her line of sight but not holding her. When the Puffs are gone. (so sad.)

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Real peeved about something.

Things I want to remember: The way you smile and let your little tongue hang out as you army crawl as quickly as possible toward something cool, the way you check over your shoulder as you crawl away from me to make sure I’m still there and how you crawl back to me as fast as you can when I sit down on the floor, your extra gummy smile (when you clamp your gums together and smile as hard as you can), how I can hear you start kicking with excitement when I walk into the room you’re in, the fact that you have the absolute stinkiest farts ever, the way you and Jameson play so happily and giggly together, the way you follow me around everywhere doing your army crawl (which your daddy calls your zombie crawl), how happy you get when you see me and Jameson coming to pick you up from a nap, the way Jameson has to climb into your crib with you and kiss your cheek when you wake up (“stop movin’ your face around and I can kiss you, Nora” he says), and the way you hold hands with me as you’re falling asleep nursing. I think it’s my very favorite thing about you. (But then again, I say that about everything about you.)

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Father’s Day ❤

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Meeting her “Super Papa”
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Meeting her “Bisnonna” (Great-Grandma, in Italian)

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I still sometimes can’t believe you’re ours, sweetheart. You are everything and more! Just  the most perfect addition to our family. We all adore you so so much, baby love! Happy eight months!

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Nora Monthly

Seven months of Nora

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Seven months old! It makes me want to cry if I think about it too much, so I really can’t let myself. I’ll be planning her first birthday party before I know it.

This month has been so good. Some things have been hard of course, but Nora is such a sweet presence in our lives that I forget all the difficult stuff the second she goes to sleep at night. Like right now all I can think about is snuggling her up and feeling her tiny little hands wrap gently around my cheeks. She’s so cute you guys. I can’t stand it.

Here’s what’s new for little miss NoJo this month…

Weight & Length: I’m not sure of her percentiles or height (her next doctors appointment isn’t until 9 months) but I weighed her at home and she’s 15.8 lbs, which is just a bit more than she was last month. And three pounds less than her brother was at this age!

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Clothing: All 6-9 month now at least. Some brands only fit if they’re in the 9 month range. My sister just gave me a whole bunch of my niece’s old clothes and it’s like Nora got a whole new wardrobe! I’ve been loving seeing her in all of my niece’s little outfits. It seems like just yesterday I was seeing Madelyn in these things and now it’s Nora’s turn! It all goes by so quickly. Gah I’m so sentimental today.

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Eyes & Hair: There is no stopping the curl on this little girl’s head. It hardly ever lays completely flat anymore and I love it! I can’t wait until it’s grown out a little more so we can see just how curly it’ll be. Her eyes are still such a pretty blue and sooo big haha! She has the roundest eyes I’ve ever seen.

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Sleep: She’s a pretty scheduled baby at this point, pretty much all by her own doing. She takes 2-3 naps a day (depending on how long they are) for several hours each. Her third nap (if she needs one) is still typically 40 minutes and really just to hold her over until bedtime around 7:30. She gets up for the day preeeetty consistently around 6am, although sometimes it’s before then (wah). I know she wakes up at least twice a night to nurse but it’s all a blur to be honest hahah. She may only wake up once sometimes, or maybe more and I just can’t remember. Who knows! We’re just starting to transition her to her own room at night. She sleeps for her first stretch in her crib and then I just bring her to bed with me when she wakes up wanting to nurse late in the night. Eventually I’ll probably go into her room and nurse her in there before putting her back down, but I honestly love having her with us at night for right now. I remember being so darn stressed about getting Jameson to sleep through the night in his own room by this point but it’s so different this time around. She’ll do it when she’s ready. She still seems so little to me that I don’t mind a bit. And…there’s always coffee.

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Eating: Breastfeeding is going just swimmingly but solid foods on the other hand…I wouldn’t describe it as a “disaster” per se…but it kind of is hahah. She has hated everything so far. Bananas, sweet potatoes, applesauce, rice cereal, pears, blueberries, grapes. Hates ’em all. Just spits them straight to the floor the second they touch her tongue, all while making the most dramatically disgusted faces she can muster. She even figured out how to clamp her gums together so I can’t get the spoon in there, which is simultaneously hilarious and incredibly frustrating. I’ve found that she tends to do better when I give her food in her fresh food feeder, but even then she’s making grossed out faces the entire time. Oh brother. We’ll keep trying!

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Don’t let this excited face fool you. She was really only happy to bang the fresh food feeder on the high chair tray.

Milestones: She’s such a little wiggle worm these days, rolling all lengths of the living room and scooting herself in different directions (although not very far and not very fast yet). She can sit up by herself for short periods of time but has a habit of simply forgetting to hold herself upright, at which point she’ll just launch in one direction towards the ground. So basically I never leave her sitting up alone. She loves being upright in her walker or bumper jumper and the other day I actually watched her try to pull herself up to stand! What in the world. I’m not ready for that yet. Figure out how to crawl first, Nora. 😉 All in good time.

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flop.
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Big girl!

Loves: Tags on toys, all types of music (most especially Alex’s guitar), playing on our toy piano, mommy mommy mommy, Jameson and all things having to do with Jameson, when you dangle a blanket over her face (I don’t know, okay? she loves it hahah), peekaboo, baths, being outside and going for walks in the stroller, and watching me put on my makeup (she loves to sit on my lap the whole time and watch me carefully in the mirror).

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Hates: Food. Being by herself. Really being away from me in any capacity. Even if I’m sitting right next to her, it doesn’t take long before she starts whining to be in my arms. She’s a liiiiittle obsessed with me.

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So pissed I left her to wash the dishes.

Communication: She babbles all the time (and I adore it) and she watches my lips so closely whenever I’m talking to her. I can tell she really wants to know what I’m yammering on about all the time. She also started copying certain things this month… when we shake our heads and say “Nora, do ‘noooo'” she’ll shake her head back at us. It’s so cute! But she really only does it when she’s in the right mood, otherwise she just stares blankly at us like we’re a bunch of lunatics. Real judgy, this one.

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Things I want to remember: The way you hug my face, how you start breathing really fast and excitedly when we dangle a blanket over you (lol), how I sometimes catch you staring quietly up at me when you’re on my hip (and then you smile so sweetly and bury your face in my shoulder), the way your face breaks into a gigantic grin and you squeal so loudly whenever I kiss you or talk to you, the way you laugh at everything Jameson does (even when he’s being cranky about something…which subsequently makes him sort of mad. “It’s not funny, Nora!” But it kind of is funny), the way you try to swipe whatever is in my hand if I’m holding it near you, the way you smash your fresh food feeder on the highchair loudly and proudly, and how cute you look when you’re determinedly scooting towards a cool toy (or, you know, something you’re not supposed to have).

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Nora Joy, we love you little sunshine girl! You are so smart, so much fun, and getting more and more beautiful by the day. We can’t wait to see how much you learn and grow this next month! ❤

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Nora Monthly

Six months of Nora

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Another wonderful month with this little beauty! I’m a bit late on getting this posted because things have been extra busy around here. But both kids happen to be napping right now (blesssssss!) so I’m able to write for 0.38 seconds before one or both of them wakes up.

Nora is sugar and spice (but mostly nice) and she gets cuter by the day. We finally had her neurological follow-up appointment this month and it looks like we’re in the clear, praise God! In fact, the neurologist was kind of confused as to why we were even there haha. She assured us that Nora looks absolutely perfect. Of course we’re going to watch her carefully (I will always and forever be slightly more worried about her) but for now we’re moving on with life and putting that scary episode behind us. On her medical records it’s labeled as a Brief Resolved Unexplained Event (BRUE) and hopefully it never becomes anything more than that. She is happy and healthy and here with us and that’s really all we can ask for.

Here’s what’s new for our little six month old! (Phew, can’t believe it’s already been half a year!)

Weight & Length: At her six month checkup this morning she weighed in at 15 lbs, 5 oz (I think about a pound heavier than last month!) and she’s 2 ft, 3 inches (adorable). This puts her in the 84th percentile for height (!!!) and the 29th for weight. And interestingly (well not really hahah but it is to me) her head size is only in the 9th percentile! For some reason I feel like her noggin is bigger than the average but apparently it’s much much smaller. Maybe it’s all that delicious chub in the cheeks throwing me off. 🙂

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Clothing: She’s almost out of her six month clothes (especially Carters brand, which runs a little small). I generally look for the 6-9 month stuff to buy her, or 6-12 month at Gymboree. I bet I’ll be getting 9 month stuff before I know it; she’s just so tall! I bought her a couple of cute bathing suits for this summer and I’m so excited to see her splashing around and playing in them in the coming months! It’s already getting toasty over here.

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Eyes & Hair: No change with those baby blue eyes (everyone always comments on how blue they are!). But her hair is starting to change! It is definitely going to be curly. I’m so excited! A little curly Nora will be adorable. I’m not surprised at all, though, because Alex has insanely curly hair and my hair was in giant crazy ringlets when I was a toddler. I’m actually surprised that Jameson doesn’t have super curly hair. Some days Nora’s hair is tame and other days it will not lay flat. It just springs back up into big curls. It is so stinking cute. Plus, I think it might be going red! Or maybe more like an auburn. It still looks light brown for the most part, but the sun brings out allllll these gorgeous red and blonde highlights. I can’t wait to see the color when it fills in a bit more.

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Sleep: I feel like this is pretty much the same as last month. She’s down to three naps a day (one around 8:30am, one around 11:30/12, and one around 4:30 or 5:30pm depending on how long the afternoon nap was). Her morning and evening naps are typically short (around 40 minutes each) but she usually takes a good long afternoon nap, around two and a half hours at a time. But it’s not an exact science of course. Nothing in parenting ever is. Sometimes her morning nap is long if she had a hard night and that throws everything off. She’s still having trouble staying asleep for long stretches at night (some nights she’ll wake up once or not even at all, other nights she’s up every three hours) so I think we’ll probably transition her to her own room at night this month so she can get used to it and hopefully get her act together haha. I’m just kind of scared. It’s so convenient having her nearby and I don’t want her to cry super loud and wake Jameson up (their rooms are right next to each other). But I know it has to be done eventually… ugh. Maybe the next month haha. I might drag my feet just a little bit longer.

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Eating: We tried out her first solid food this month (mashed banana) and she HAAAAAATED ITTTTT!!! It was actually hilarious. I’m so glad I took a video of it. Is that mean? Oh well, she’ll think it’s funny one day. She was seriously so offended that we tried giving her such a horrendous substance. We tried applesauce too and she had the same reaction. I might pick up some of that super bland rice or oat baby cereal at the store and see if she’ll tolerate that. And then gradually add food in to get her used to flavors in a more subtle way. Feeding her straight from the table is obviously not going to work for Nora just yet. It’s okay though, she has time. And breastfeeding is still going well so I’m not worried. Table food is just for fun at this point anyway.

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Milestones: She’s officially rolling back and forth all over the place! She had been doing it on the bed and on the couch for awhile now but absolutely refused to try on the floor. Literally nothing could entice her. Then one day, she just rolled with total ease as if she could have done it all along. I’m pretty sure she wanted to make sure she had the coordination and strength down before she gave it it a try. Whereas Jameson had no problem trying and failing over and over until he finally got the hang of it, Nora really wanted to perfect her rolling game plan before she showed off. She sits up with support (she does best with the Boppy around her) but I don’t trust her enough to just leave her there to play without toppling over (or folding in half, that’s always funny) so I’m always nearby. She really does love being upright though and seeing everything going on around her so she enjoys jumping around in the doorway bouncer thing and being in the walker she has at Alex’s parents’ house. She can even take little steps and push herself forward in there! Her fine motor skills are improving as well; she can pass toys from one hand to the other and flip them around to check out all the interesting sides.

 

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Loves: Finding the tags on all of her toys, holding hands while she nurses to sleep (my heart!!!), playing in her walker, anything having to do with Jameson, being on my hip, baths, going outside, when Daddy gets home from work, listening while I read books with Jameson, and she really liked her first time in the swing this month!

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Hates: The usual culprits. Tummy time, car seat, being away from me for too long. Ps, these pictures crack me up:

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Communication: This has been a fun one this month! Just a few weeks ago she started officially babbling! She had been getting close for a couple of weeks, saying things like “aaaaaaba.” But then one day she started the real deal babbling and now she babbles all the time, things like “bababa,” “mamama,” “dadada,” “nanana,” and “papapa.” I know that’s not super interesting to anyone but to someone who studied and loves speech and language, these are my favorite things! Jameson was all about the physical milestones (he was legit crawling by this point) and didn’t bother with speech sounds until 8 months. But Nora is so interested in it. She watches my lips so closely when I’m talking to her and tries to copy what I do. So sweet! She also figured out how to blow raspberries which is simultaneously adorable and gross because of all the drool. Just constant drool with this one.

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Things I want to remember: The way you grab my face with both your hands and smother me with “kisses,” the way you actually hug me with your tiny little arms (you are so snugly), the way your sweet fingers find mine when you’re nursing to sleep and you hold on so gently, the way you hold your brother’s face in your hands when he’s playing and talking with you, your kicky little legs when you’re so stoked about something, how you “swim” when you’re on your belly (arms and legs up and moving in all directions), the way you reach for me when you want me to hold you, the way you play with your soft baby books (hold them up over your face, drop them there, and kick happily until someone lifts the book off to reveal your huge grin/tongue sticking out), and that big gummy smile you have on your face 90% of the time.

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Happy half birthday, NoJo baby! We love you to bits and pieces. ❤

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Nora Monthly

Five months of Nora

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Praise God for a much more peaceful month! Nora hasn’t had any more episodes and we haven’t noticed anything out of the ordinary. We’re still waiting on the referral to go through for her full neurological evaluation (I’ve been getting kind of annoying with all my calls to the doctor) but I’m cautiously hopefully that everything will come back clear on that anyway. We’re so thankful that she’s doing so well!

Here’s what’s new for Nora this month…

Weight & Length: No well-visit this month so I’m not sure of her percentiles or height but she’s just under 14 lbs, about a pound heavier than last month! Yay Nora!

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Double chin game is strong

Clothing: She’s still in 3-6 month or 6 month stuff and somewhere between size 2 and size 3 diapers, but we’re going with size 3 because they just seem more comfortable around her little round belly. She can’t really wear her footie pjs anymore because she’s just so tall! Things will fit her everywhere except in length, or they’ll fit her in length but be so baggy and huge everywhere else. Luckily summer is fast approaching so she’ll probably be in onesies (and bathing suits) starting pretty soon anyway. I can’t wait to see her in all her sweet little summery things!

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Eyes & Hair: Baby blues and medium-brown hair! Sometimes it still looks super dark but in the sun I swear it’s going blonde or at least much lighter brown, kind of like a caramel color. I’m getting super antsy to see how it grows in and get to start styling it all cute and girly!

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Sleep: Last month things were bad with naps and good with nighttime sleep. This month it’s kind of the opposite. Although this week specifically has just been bad all around haha. I feel like she’s in the middle of switching up her sleep pattern right now so this category is kind of hard to write about. She’s been waking up like every 3-4 hours during the night (very strange for her, she usually sleeps 8 hours straight and then goes back down for another 3-4 hours after a quick snack) but her naps have been somewhat more predictable. I think she’s actually in the process of dropping down to three naps a day. She’s been able to nap for longer periods of time as well, like an hour and a half or two hours sometimes. But like I said, this week in particular has been hard for her so I’m not quite sure how it’ll work out yet. Hopefully she settles into a schedule soon. She takes every nap in her crib now but we still have her with us at night because honestly I’m just not ready for her to be down the hall and away from me! Plus it’s just darn convenient to have her close for all those nighttime wakes she’s currently dealing with.

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Eating: Still exclusively breastfeeding although she’s getting so grabby with table food that she’s almost swiped some of it on more than one occasion. Once she shoved her entire little hand into my yogurt haha! We’re still planning on waiting until 6 months to start introducing any solids and even then it’ll be just for fun. I might try out a sippy cup with water for her soon because I remember that Jameson loooved that at this age, but besides that it’s business as usual. Although I will say that she is a very stressful nurser. She constantly moves around, whips her head around at any noise, sometimes chokes, it’s just a hot mess sometimes. But she has been more willing to nurse to sleep, which I know some people dislike but I absolutely adore. 🙂 This phase is so short that I’ll take those sleepy snuggles wherever I can get them!

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Look at that teeny hand!

Milestones: I feel like this is mostly the same as last month actually. I mean obviously she’s fine-tuning a lot of her skills but there haven’t been any big and new milestones this month. I thought for sure she’d be rolling from back to belly by now but she’s still so content to stay where she is (aside from scooting herself forward a bit while on her tummy). She does roll up onto her side but so far hasn’t given much of an effort to flip all the way over. Oh well! Makes things easier for me to have her stay in one place. She’s getting better at sitting with support (she can actually sit up by herself for very brief moments of time), can grab and hang onto her feet, and is officially a “hip baby” now, although she prefers to be carried facing out so she can see everything that’s going on.

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She fell over a second later.

Loves: Jameson, Jameson, oh and Jameson. Homegirl is obsessed with her brother (no arguments here, I’m obsessed with him too). She giggles nonstop when he’s around and when he does things to make her laugh she literally cannot control herself. Like big, adorable belly laughs for as long as he’s willing to stand there playing with her. She can’t handle her love for him and it’s so adorable. He is without a doubt her most favorite person, even more than me I think. She also loves music, being outside, grabbing/gnawing on everything, taking baths, hanging out stark naked, playing with my pink water bottle, being on my hip, and honestly whatever she can get her hands on.

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Hates: Tummy time for more than like five minutes, the car seat most days, and being passed to anyone who isn’t me or Alex. Although she does have a soft spot for my dad.

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Tummy time quitter.

Communication: She’s adding new sounds to her repertoire all the time, including raspberries and excited squeals. She loves to coo back and forth with me and responds with smiles almost any time someone talks to her. She’s also learning to turn to me as kind of her home base, which is very sweet. She’ll smile shyly at someone and then bury her face happily in my shoulder to make sure I’m still around. She laughs all the time with Jameson and copies his happy screams too. And her facial expressions are the best.

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Somebody is teething.

Things I want to remember: Your sweet blue eyes quietly watching my every move, your warm squishy belly, the way your face breaks into a giant smile when Daddy gets home from work, how it feels to watch you and your brother becoming friends, the way you laugh so hard you can barely catch your breath when Jameson does something funny, the way you like to keep one hand on my face while you’re on my hip sometimes, the way your little fingers gently reach up to touch my lips when you wake up in the morning, the way you pull my shirt down over your eyes when you’re trying to nurse to sleep, and the way you look up at me when I go to pick you up after a nap (eyes peeking out of your snug little swaddle, the corners of your mouth slowly creeping into a big ol’ grin).

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Nora baby, we adore you! You are such a sweet presence in our lives and we can’t get enough of your joyful little spirit. We are so so thankful for exactly who God made you to be and we can’t wait to see all you learn and all you become! Happy five months my littlest love.

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Nora Monthly

Four months of Nora

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Phew! This has been a tough month for us. Honestly probably one of the toughest months that Alex and I have had as parents so far. There were lots of moments of joy and excitement (Nora belly laughing, Nora rolling, life with our silly and sweet toddler) but there were also lots of moments of great fear, anxiety, and lots of sleepless nights.

This past month we had our first real “scare” as parents. Jameson has been a textbook kid from the beginning (no major injuries or sicknesses or any big surprises) but Nora, by no fault of her own, really gave us a run for our money a few weeks ago. One Tuesday night she was laying between my legs and looking up at me, giggling and smiling and cooing like normal, when suddenly she started squeezing her eyes shut tight in a really agitated way and kind of brought her hand up to her nose as if she was going to rub it. It almost looked like she was about to sneeze but she couldn’t open her eyes again. Knowing something was very wrong, I immediately picked her up and held her in front of me and started shouting her name. Slowly she started fading into unconsciousness, like she was falling asleep. Her little body went limp in my arms and she was unresponsive to our shouts and any movement. My mother-in-law happened to be over (which I can only describe as the grace of God since she never comes over on Tuesday nights) and she instinctively grabbed Nora, flipped her over, and started pounding on her back. Finally Nora did a little cough and started screaming and crying, which was actually the most relieving sound in the world. I was shaking so terribly and crying my eyes out and hugging my little girl saying, “It’s okay, it’s okay, you’re okay” over and over in her ear. The whole thing lasted maybe 20-30 seconds but it felt like an eternity.

I don’t know if I can accurately describe the horror of seeing your infant lose all signs of life before your eyes. It’s a kind of sickening terror that you never ever want to feel again. We immediately rushed her over to the nearest hospital (me sitting in the back with Nora and trying/failing to keep myself together). She was totally normal by the time we arrived, even smiling at me on the way over. They ran some tests which all came back clear and transferred us to Cardon Children’s Hospital for an overnight stay and some further observation. Everything was 100% normal (except for me and Alex who jumped up every time Nora moved during the night) and the neurology team in the morning was convinced that it was not a seizure, which is what we initially thought it might be. All signs pointed to it being a choking incident since Nora was laying on her back at the time and was pretty congested and drooly. Another possibility is that she started choking or got agitated for some other reason, panicked, and then held her breath as an instinctive response which is actually fairly common in kids. Whatever the case, we were warned that it could happen again. Sometimes it never does, but we’ll need to watch her carefully (no problem there, I’ve been a total helicopter mom since she came home). Even now I feel panic welling up inside of me anytime she squeezes her eyes shut or rubs her nose or does something else weird, which is kind of a problem because four month olds do weird things all the time.

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First time I’ve been in an ambulance. Broke my heart that it had to be for my little baby.

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So sweet and happy anyway.

All of this was a huge test of how well I put my trust in the Lord. I’d like to say I handled it all gracefully but there were a lot of moments of doubt and questioning and sinful fear. In the days after we got home from the hospital I lived in terror that it would happen again and that it would be worse. The only way I was able to kill those thoughts was through almost constant prayer, through the prayers of others for me, and by meditating on the promises of the Lord. I had post-it notes with verses written on them all over the place and any time I felt that fear creeping in, I recited the verses again and focused on all the things I was thankful for in the moment instead of all the things I was afraid might happen. With some time now God has given me a better handle on things and this whole experience has really changed so much in my life…from the things I’m thankful for to the way I value life to the way I pray for others. I hope nothing like this ever happens again but I can see how the Lord used it to challenge me and sanctify certain areas of my life.

Needless to say…it was a difficult month for this sweet little girl. Getting past the hospital stay was a relief, but then the poor baby was sick for several weeks after that with an ear infection and a nasty cold she couldn’t kick. It kept her up coughing at night, made it almost impossible for her to breathe, and stressed us all out to no end because we were still reeling from the fainting episode. Praise God she’s as good as new now and she hasn’t fainted again. We have seen her do that squinty-eyed stressed out thing (which is how the episode started) but I’ve been able to snap her out of it and she hasn’t passed out again. We’re continuing to pray for her protection and watching her closely at all times. And this week (at my request) her pediatrician put in a referral for us to get a full evaluation with the Phoenix Children’s neurology department within the next couple of weeks, just to put our minds at ease.

Anyway. I know this was a long intro and probably could have been (should have been) a separate post…but it’s relevant to Nora’s fourth month and I wanted to include it. This month was hard. But God is good and there were a LOT of good things that happened this month too. So let’s leave all this crappy stuff behind and be thankful for all the wonderful, blissfully normal things we got to experience with Nora too. 🙂

Weight & Length: At her four month appointment this week she was 12 lbs, 12 oz (18th percentile) and I forget how tall they said she is but she’s in the 70th percentile for height. Tall and skinny! She’s trailing almost three whole pounds behind where Jameson was at four months, which is kind of crazy to me. But Jameson did have some deliciously chubby thighs so I’m guessing that’s where those extra three pounds were hiding haha. Her head circumference was in the 30th percentile, so we’re right on track there!

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Clothing: She’s in 3-6 month stuff for the most part, although some 6 month outfits fit her if the brand runs a little small. They’re usually kind of baggy on her but she’s so tall that she needs the extra length! Diapers are size 2 now.

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Hair & Eyes: Her eyes are still that gorgeous blue, but her hair has been changing a bit! She’s lost a lot of it since she was born and the hair growing in underneath is like…golden blonde with some reddish tints here and there. Kind of like how Jameson’s hair was when he was a baby. So I’m thinking it might go strawberry blonde like her big brother’s, which would be super cute. 🙂

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Sleep: We hit a rough patch this month with her nighttime sleep because of the hospital stay and how sick she was afterwards. There was one horrible night during the thick of it where she would not stay asleep unless she was being constantly bounced up and down on the yoga ball. So from around 6pm to 3:30am Alex and I had to switch off who was bouncing her continually. That was baaaaad. But now (fingers crossed) she’s back to her normal self, sleeping in 8 hour stretches at night and only waking up once or twice to eat. Her naps are still…meh. Usually in 40 minute increments, or longer if she’s in the baby wrap or the swing. We’ll work on it. For now I’m thankful for good sleep at night!

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Eating: Nursing every three-ish hours, or whenever she’s hungry. I’m not strict about it because she’s so particular about when she’ll eat. If she shows any signs at all of wanting to nurse I’m immediately shoving it in her face hahah. She will straight up scream and cry if I try to feed her before she decides she’s ready. Drama queen. She’s getting super distractible during meals now, which is an added issue haha. If she hears something while she’s eating, she has to whip her head around and check what’s going on.

Also she really likes to eat my water bottle.

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Milestones: This month, she laughed! She’d been doing these silly little giggles for a while, but a few weeks ago she gave us a real, honest-to-goodness belly laugh while I was playing peekaboo with her. I loooove her laugh! So tiny and squeaky and adorable. I’m obsessed. I can usually get her laugh at least once a day now, with a silly noise or peekaboo or tickling her or kissing her cheeks. She also started rolling from belly to back this month and she’s gotten really good at it. It kind of makes tummy time a pain in the neck because if she doesn’t want to do it, she’ll just roll herself right on over no matter how many times I flip her back. She’s getting close to rolling the other way too (back to belly). She can get up on her side and then does a little side crunch thing, but she can’t quite get over her shoulder yet. I bet it’ll happen this month! She’s also getting good with her fine motor skills and can hold toys, bring them to her mouth, and put them back down on her own. She’s a terrible judge of distance, though, and will try and grab anything that’s in her line of sight even if it’s literally across the room. My favorite is when I’m changing her diaper and she’s looking up at me intensely and then slowly, slowly her hands will come together in front of her as she tries to grab my face from a foot beneath me haha.

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Loves: Jameson, when Alex plays guitar, her Minnie Mouse toy, Sophie Giraffe, when I read books, playing peekaboo, “singing” loudly, and whenever I kiss her cheeks or talk to her or even just look in her general direction haha.

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“Hello, yes. These are my favorite toys.”

Hates: She’s not a fan of the car seat or getting dressed (really just her arms going in sleeves) or too many new things all at once (especially people…homegirl’s already got some stranger danger instincts). She’s also starting to dislike being carried around in the baby wrap (which makes me so sad) but she’s very content to face outward in the Ergo. I think she just likes to be able to see everything that’s going on.

She also kind of hates when I make this one really high pitched sound with my tongue hahah.

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Communication: She loooves cooing at us and trying to “sing” (screaming loudly and happily, usually along to music but also just whenever she wants to hear her own voice). She laughs and smiles all the time and she’s getting to be so much fun to “chat” with because of all her new sounds.

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Bout to scream/sing

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Things I want to remember: The way you try to grab everything in sight, even when it’s in another room, the way you laugh when Jameson does something funny, your surprised little giggle shrieks when I tickle you, your big gummy smile when Jameson and I sing “Baby Beluga” to you during bath time, how incredibly jolly you are in the morning right after you wake up (nothing can spoil your mood!), that excited kicky thing you do with your eyes all wide and mouth in a little “o” when you see a cool toy you want to have, how your eyes lock on me no matter where I am, and how you regularly check around to make sure I’m still in sight.

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Oh Nora, we just love you so much. We’re so thankful you’re ours and so thankful for every moment we get to have with you. You are adored and cherished and loved beyond what I can say. Praise God for every wonderful day, every normal day, and every difficult day. They are all so worth it. Happy four months, NoJo girl.

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Nora Monthly

Three months of Nora

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Nora is officially out of the newborn stage and on into regular old babyhood! We’re coming up on some of my favorite months so I’m really excited. 🙂 We are obsessed with this little girl and everything she adds to our lives!

Here’s what’s new for Nora at three months old…

Weight & Length: She didn’t have a checkup this month so I’m not sure about her percentile rankings and all that, but I weighed her myself at home and she’s right around 12 lbs, which is about a pound and a half bigger than last month. She’s filling out here and there (especially in her deliciously round belly) but at a much slower rate than her chunky big brother ever did. Very petite, this one!

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Clothing: She’s still in 0-3 month/3 month stuff right now and size 1 diapers. We have yet to break into her 3-6 month stuff but that’s okay with me because she has so many cute outfits that fit her right now! I’ll be sad to give them up.

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Hair & Eyes: Her eyes are still quite blue and her hair is mostly dark brown. I think it might be lightening up a bit (sometimes I see reddish tints) but overall it’s still the same. I know we have awhile to go but I can’t wait to see the texture it will be! Curly? Wavy? Straight? I also can’t wait to get more adorable hair bows for her because I’m a bit of a bow hoarder.

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Sleep: Well we’re finally hitting a rough patch with sleep. (The perfect angel sleep couldn’t last forever I guess.) Her sleep at night is still usually awesome…she sleeps from about 7:30pm-3:30am, eats, sleeps again until around 6:30am, eats again, and then wakes up for the day around 7 or 7:30. But her naps. Ohhhh her naps. She will only sleep for 30 minutes at a time. Like on the dot. She cannot get herself back to sleep unless she’s in the baby wrap or in her swing or sometimes the stroller. Basically she needs to be lulled back to sleep or else she’s up after half an hour. I’ve tried just dealing with it but then she’s needing to sleep every other hour and it’s absolutely exhausting (and near impossible with a toddler in tow) to spend 10 minutes rocking her and carefully getting her down only to have her wake up again 30 minutes later. And since I don’t feel like she’s ready for intense sleep training just yet, we’re basically just taking advantage of the swing or the baby wrap or the stroller once a day so she at least gets one good nap in. The rest of the time I still do try to have her nap in her room so she gets used to it but honestly this is just where we’re gonna be for a little while. As long as it’s not messing with her nighttime sleep, we’ll make it work.

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Eating: Still nursing around every 3-4 hours, but she’s really so particular about when she’ll eat. She doesn’t nurse for comfort like Jameson did…if she’s upset (which usually only happens when she’s overly tired) there is absolutely no consoling her until you can manage to rock her to sleep. She usually only nurses to sleep before bed and during the night. Otherwise, she absolutely refuses to nurse unless she’s actually hungry. I like that she knows what she wants but I’ll admit it was much easier to comfort Jameson and get him to sleep and I kinda miss that hahah.

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Milestones: She is sooo close to real belly laughs! She does this funny squeaky laugh/cough thing when you tickle her and she squeals in delight when you’re playing with her. I’m dying for a real, honest-to-goodness laugh though! Any day now, I bet. 🙂 Tummy time is still ehhh (she mostly just lays her head down and sucks on her hand haha) but she’s getting really good with her fine motor skills. All at once she noticed she has hands and can use them to swat the toys on her playmat or bring a soft toy up to her mouth when she’s in her bouncer. But since she’s not super great at it yet, she gets really annoyed when she can’t quite get her Sophie Giraffe exactly where she wanted it to go haha.

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Loves: Warm baths, the Solly Baby Wrap, her playmat, her Minnie Mouse stuffed animal, Sophie Giraffe (although it’s kind of a love-hate thing), watching Jameson, when Alex plays guitar, and when I talk to her or kiss her face or make silly sounds.

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Hates: Being tired (who doesn’t?), when she can’t get her toys all the way to her mouth, and when a loud scary noise happens (she gets the saddest look on her face, sticks her little lower lip allllll the way out, and just wails). Sometimes she hates her carseat too but she’s gotten much better about it.

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Communication: Smiling all the time, almost laughing, cooing and squealing. We’re slowly seeing bits of her personality and loving every second of it!

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Things I want to remember: The way you smile at me in the morning when you wake up all bright eyed and bushy tailed, that cough/laugh you do when I tickle your ribs or legs, how Jameson calls you his “baby sisto,” how big you smile when I start talking to you or kiss your cheeks, that face you make when you’re trying to grab Minnie Mouse on your lap (lips all pursed out), how Jameson shouts “NOWA’S AWAKE?!” with glee any time you wake up from a nap, the way your eyes get suuuuper wide when I make that high pitched sound with my tongue, and the way your daddy says “Hi Newt!” to you every time he comes home from work.

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We love you a bushel and a peck, sweet girl! More than yesterday, more than just this morning! These past three months have been so extra happy because of you. You are a joy in our lives and we’re so so so SOOOOXISCJIDSFIWG thankful God blessed us with your sweet, fun, beautiful self.