Tuesday, September 28, 2010

17 months

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Dear Little P.,
You are 17 months today!
We celebrated by going to your Music Together class (which you are loving!) and then home for a nice lunch and nap. So far so good! Summer has ended (booo) and now we are starting to settle in to autumn. We are making plans for some nice walks in the woods so you can collect your beloved leaves. You LOVE leaves!

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You like to find one and hold onto it as you play around the yard. Sometimes you'll carry two if you're feeling crazy. Playing outside is much easier, though, now that it isn't quite as scorching hot. And you LOVE playing outside. Hot activities right now are: leaf collecting, playing in the bubbles I blow, and touching all things nature.

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You also enjoy running into your playhouse to open and close the shutters.

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Indoors, you are enjoying playing with your little stuffed doll we've creatively named Dolly. You take her everywhere and sleep with her during every nap and night. You've even started "feeding" her by giving her food you are snacking on as well as drinks you are enjoying. It's cute to see you try and put a straw in her embroidered mouth. And you say "umm, yumm, yummm" to add a realistic twist. I guess you notice I say Yum yum yum to you when you are having your meals. On another note, that counts as another word you can say! You're a wee bit behind with your language, so it's always exciting when you surprise us with a new sound. I feel like there's all these words bubbling up inside of you just waiting to burst out. You certainly babble enough to give me that impression!
You are growing so fast. One day you were comfortably wearing a size 5 shoe, and the next day your heel was hanging off the back and we couldn't fit your sneakers on you. In shock, we took you off to get measured and you are now a size 7. So much for all the great size 6 shoes you'd inherited from your cousins. Now, you just have to grow into those sweet feet of yours. I'm sure you won't have any problem with that, right? Here's a photo of our summer 2010 shoes we wore most.

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This past month has been so wonderful with you. We are adoring playing games with you that make you laugh. You have such a wonderful and robust belly laugh that I'll never tire of hearing. It's my favorite sound, of course! You are a bundle of running energy but you always find time to savor a good book or two. I like your style.

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As for adventures, we visited Nana and Grampa up in Maine for the day one weekend. We got to have lunch on the shore in Portland and then we went to L.L. Bean. You were grumpy from a lack of nap, but you had some shining moments. We also went to Boston Common and the Public Garden one day. There, we visited with the ducks and you ran a bit in the park.

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You got to visit and pose with the seal on the portion of the Common called the Carty Parade Ground, named after your great-grandfather.

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Your Daddy proposed to me near there so it is a special place. You seemed to like it there, and didn't complain once during our exciting P.F. Chang's lunch. And recently, for Daddy's birthday, we went to Rockport, MA for the day and enjoyed the shops and sites. The park was especially fun for you as Daddy chased you all around and made you laugh the whole time. I think your laughter was the best gift he got that day.

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I'm excited to see what new things this month will bring. I look forward to your smile every day. It lights up my heart and my life. How'd we get so lucky to have such a special angel as you?
I love you always and forever Little P.,
Love you to the moon and back,
Mama

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Monday, September 27, 2010

Goodbye Summer

We recently said goodbye to summer, so I made sure to document the shoes we wore most often. Together. (this was before Paige's feet decided to grow from a size 5 to a 7 within 2 days)

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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Balloon!

The best couple of dollars ever spent. Never fails!
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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Treasured Moments

Treasured Moment:
Last week, Paige was playing with her stacking rings. We have the wooden Ikea version (see HERE).
She's never really done anything with them except to carry around various rings and clack them together. The hole in the center of each ring is pretty small and they are the same on all the rings. The center peg is pretty narrow...basically a stick. Well, she finally figured out how to get the rings onto the peg after months of struggle. After the first, she shocked herself and excitedly put on the second...then so forth until she finished putting them on. (not in any particular order of course). I was so excited for her that I clapped and said "yaaaaaaaay!!!!". She smiled and shrieked with pleasure that she'd completed this task by herself. She practiced through the day and when DADDY!!!! came home she sat on the floor and put all the rings on the peg. She then excitedly turned to me with the biggest/widest smile and clapped her hands. She then quickly whirled her head the other way to look at Chris and clapped again. She flashed him the same excited smile...a look on her face that looked proud and almost in disbelief that she'd finally done it and we'd BOTH seen it. She looked like she'd just gotten the BEST GIFT EVERRRRR!!!! Well, after we all clapped and cheered she decided to empty the peg and do it maybe 5 more times in a row. All the while, looking exuberant after each pass. I'll never forget the excited look of pride on her face in that moment and the way she whirled her head from left to right to look at me and then Chris. *sigh*

Monday, September 13, 2010

Kisses

This photo was taken quite some time ago when Paige was very small!

A few years ago I read an article somewhere that discussed chemicals that permeate our daily lives whether we want them to or not. How, no matter how diligent, we are exposed to countless chemicals in our environment that are breathed, absorbed in our skin, etc. Many of these chemicals will never leave our bodies; they stay in our systems. We all have different levels of different "toxins" in our bodies and I guess we learn to live with them. Isn't that creepy? It was a sort of "you just live with it and go on" sort of message. I buried the sentiment deep inside, hoping to forget the entire topic and its creepiness.
Some time ago, Paige was on her changing pad as I prepared her for her nap. At that particular moment, she was looking forlorn and a bit panicked at the prospect of separating from me for 2 hours. She'd managed to accumulate a big fat tear, which I wiped away with my own lips in the form of a kiss on her cheek. I then kissed each hand…in the center of each palm and closed her fingers around them. I remember saying: "here are my kisses, they will always be with you to remind you how much I love you. See? This is how you'll carry my love with you no matter where you go forever and ever." She seemed to calm and the nap began without a hitch. In the weeks since, I tell her similar things…whether it's bedtime or nap time. Sometimes I'll kiss her arms and act like I'm rubbing the kiss in as if it's lotion. I like to say "Let's rub it in good, so it stays in there for always!"
I was then reminded of that article about the chemicals and figure that I'd much rather have kisses build up in my system. I thought of all the kisses from my own Mom and Dad I've been given throughout my life. It's a wonder I'm not swelled to a thousand pounds of weight in carrying those kisses. It's a comforting thought, to know that I carry the love in the form of kisses even my grandparents gave me as a small child. Even though they have been gone for many, many years I still carry their kisses as part of me. It's an idea that I treasure. I find it so soothing.
I hope Paige likes it too, and knows that no matter how far apart we are, I am always a part of her. Not just in DNA, but in all the kisses I have given just for her. I hope they will cloak her in love so she will always feel safe and warm. The way I feel from all the kisses my parents have cloaked ME in. I carry them safely. Happy Grandparent's Day ( a day late) Mom and Dad (and to my own Grandparents who I believe are with me whenever I'm thinking of them…which is often!)

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Addicted

Hello!
So, yes, I've finally cut off the television for Paige during the day. No biggie, right? Well, it's a big deal to ME. See, my name is Megan and I'm a T.V.-holic. The second I wake up until the second I go to bed the television is on in the background. It always has been. With Paige around, I've kept it on Nick Jr. and she'll watch a show or two and play the rest of the time (glancing up on occasion to check it out). I know what all the research has said about television and how it has a negative effect on babies and young children and should be limited to very little or no exposure. There are a lot of factors as to why, which I won't get into here. But, I've noticed that Paige has a bit of a speech lag going on. She's not delayed as of now, just a bit of a lag. And I realized that having the T.V. on distracts her from what I am saying and so she's missing out on valuable development time. The more time spent focused on TV equals less time "talking" or listening to Mama and interacting with her. The other issue is I'm fully addicted to having the tv on. I'm fine with her watching a show here or there. But that's not how I do it...it's just on ALL the time. And I find that I can't control myself and leave it on constantly...I feel like I need it for company or something. I'm not sure what the deal is. So, as of Tuesday I turned it off for the day and have decided to do AT LEAST this whole week and continue on with no tv for Paige going forward. At least until I feel I can handle having the tv on for a show or two and trust myself to turn it back off. That first day was HARD! I was getting itchy for the tv around mid-morning and again around 4:00 or so. I had to force myself to avoid the entire tv area. And it's a lot more work to entertain and play with a busy toddler when there isn't the distraction box blaring. I'm more tired for sure. But, in a good way. The second day went well. It was still hard, but I felt more bonded to Paige and we spent more quality time doing fun things together. She seems much happier with this arrangement and is so much more cheerful (although, I detect a bit of clinginess taking place). Her focus already seems better. She's certainly able to hear everything I say and react to it. Last night, Chris even thanked me for trying this arrangement. He found he enjoyed his "Paige time" after work without the tv blaring and distracting his thoughts. They had a lot more fun together chasing each other around the house and laughing. We even ate together at the kitchen table and had quality conversation as a family. Quality all around! Something so simple is already making such a big change! It's wonderful to be present for life's beautiful little moments and I'm already starting to enjoy the peace and quiet. Did I just say that??! One day I promise myself I'll be able to put on a fun show or movie for Paige to enjoy and I will be able to turn it off once it is over; thus being able to move on to other things. I won't let it rule my life. For now, think we've made a good start and are moving in the right direction.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Treasured Moments

Hi friends!
I'm sorry I've been away! Time goes so quickly and I don't realize how much time has passed since the last post. I'll expand on this in my next post, but I've eliminated the television from our daily routine as of this past Tuesday. (a challenging task for an addict like myself) Just finished the second full day of "no tv with Paige" and it's going fine. What I DO want to mention now is that it is already making me notice all the beautiful little moments we have together and all the simple things that make me smile. I thought I'd comment on them from time to time so that I have a record of them.
Treasured Moment today (1):
After Paige went to bed, I was in my closet and noticed Chris' laundry basket sitting there. Filled with freshly laundered whites...socks and undershirts. I saw Paige's little bikini bathing suit bottoms; BRIGHT pink and orange plaid, sitting on top of the clothes. She had "helped" me do the laundry by putting her clean suit where she thought it belonged. I paused and smiled as I thought of her helpful spirit wanting to contribute. It's little surprises like that during the day that make me smile. A book in an unexpected place--a random toy under the bed...evidence that a little one was there. Lucky. Lucky. Lucky. We are lucky. I remember it and treasure it.

Treasured Moment today (2):
I was feeding Paige her lunch and she only had a few bites of this and that before her head suddenly just slumped to the side with her eyes shut. I panicked and thought she choked or passed out. I poked her and she looked at me and smiled, babbling feverishly. Her eyes then sort of blinked slowly and she shut them again. She fell asleep right there! She's NEVER done that before and she'd shown NO signs of being tired before that. I decided lunch was over for that moment, brought her up for an early-ish nap and instantly and deeply fell asleep in her bed once I settled her in. I guess she was tired, but she's just never instantly sort of passed out like that before. It's like someone did the Vulcan pinch thingie. She went on to have a typical 2.25 hour nap and woke in a happy mood. I can laugh now, but sheesh!

Firsts

Paige began taking spoons and pretending to eat with them with her play food. So, we let her use her own spoon for the first time to eat her sweet potatoes. Yum!
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