To both my kiddos,
You are both so precious to me. There's always so much going on in your day-to-day development that it's hard to sit down and hope I remember it all. And scribbling down quick notes when I think of them always just passes me by. Too much in one day. I'll just wing it as I usually do....
You look so so much like my mother, moreso every passing day. You look like her when you make certain faces, you look like her from the side, you look like her while you sleep. And it's not just me who knows this, plenty of others have commented. It's amazing to me.. I miss my mother so much, and I still don't really display any photos of her around the house. Maybe one on the fridge, because it's just too hard. I actually prefer how crazy-busy life keeps me that I can't ever sit and dwell on the deep loss I know is there.. so I haven't made much effort to surround myself with her image. But, you. You remind me so much of her.. and it's not one bit painful. It's absolutely incredible. God makes all babies perfect in their own way, and special.. but I think He made you look like her with every intention to keep her here with us, because her time on Earth was just far too short. We get to see her everyday, in you, and my gosh that just makes me want to cry just writing that. You are so special, you have no idea. It also makes me laugh sometimes, when you are being a fussy little toot at the most inopportune times (think: dinner burning, toddler misbehaving, doorbell ringing, cue your cries!) and you look like a mini version of my mother. Sometimes you are also my mother's revenge!
You are so in love with Andrew. Every Tues and Thurs at preschool pick-up time, if you are awake, you absolutely light up at the sight of him, in the backseat of the car. I swear, I can't get you to smile that huge and genuine ALL day.. just the sight of him and you just radiate. He plays little games with you, specifically the 'Where's Avery' game.. he turns opposite from you, saying 'Wheeere's Avery.. where's Avery?!?'.. then turns really fast and says 'There you ARE!'.. and you smile SO big. When he can get a real laugh out of you, he is so proud of himself. It's really something.
But for as sweet as Andrew is with you, he is also a tad rough at times. I think he wants to really see how far he can go, how much he can get away with.. he tries to roll you over, which we have to repeat ourselves daily that this is NOT OKAY, and he likes to hover over you - very nerve wracking considering how large he is. He also has pulled on your arms/legs while we are carrying you.. or pushed down a bit too hard on your belly.. all of this has not yet made you cry or even fuss.. so clearly he hasn't hurt you yet. But is is exhausting on my end, constantly reiterating to be gentle...
You just started sleeping on your belly. This gets us more sleep, which is no surprise really.. we've just always been too nervous to intentionally place your on your belly. Now you do it all on your own. And we never flip you back over, unless you wake up crying.. and even then, we roll you on your side. I don't think I ever saw Andrew sleep on his stomach as a baby, so this is new territory!
You started blowing raspberries right at 4.5 months. It was a pretty big obsession for a few days, then it tapered off and you didn't do it for a few weeks. I am glad it's not a huge obsession anymore, because trying to get you to have a focused nursing session during that time was all but impossible. Yes, you blew raspberries upon my nipples. It was sometimes messy. :>/
You aren't what I consider a 'drooler'. Andrew was. Our person was always covered in his drool.. his outfits always adorned with a soaked drool bib. You really don't drool that much, but I know that can change overnight! Speaking of drool, you have one tooth I know is coming in.. it's been a white spot on your gums for about 2 months now. Slowly but surely!
You can sit up for just a few seconds on your own, before falling backwards or forwards (or to the side!).. I don't know why I am encouraging this mobility, as I know it leads to MORE mobility.. but it's pretty cute. I think the girth of your thighs will serve you well in anchoring you to the ground, when you are truly ready to sit by yourself.
I can't believe you will be 6 months old in just a few weeks.. half a year. It seems like nothing, in the grand scheme of things, 6 months IS a very short time.. but when I look at the helpless little squawking newborn you were just a handful of months ago, to the roll-y little nugget of joy you are now?? Makes my head spin a little...
Andrew: Child. What can I say? That I've considered selling you on ebay lately? That I've screamed into a pillow at the end of one brutal day with you? That we have just ordered 2 (maybe 3?) discipline books on amazon, because we feel completely out of our league? So. You've been.. a challenge. One curve-ball of discipline needs after another. And all of this following about 3 years of near-perfect, who am I kidding ANGELIC, behavior.. and oh yes, also following the birth of your little sister. So to say I am tired.. well, that's just a ridiculous understatement. Last night was the first night in ohhhhh.. a year? that you got up in the middle of the night, requiring both of us to come negotiate you going back to sleep. It was also the night that Avery decided to throw us a super long sleep stretch, so that makes perfect sense right? Pretty standard, I hear.
I don't know what it is, really. I think we have let a few misbehaviors slide, because we were focused too much on 'picking our battles', given the huge life change you were experiencing with a new sibling. All those misbehaviors gave way to new ones, and snowball effect blah blah blah. Or maybe it's an age thing? I really have no idea and I'm honestly too tired to venture guesses. All I know is, you are not very pleasant to be around a lot of the time. I'm sorry, but let's just stop beating around the bush! It doesn't mean we don't love you any less right now.. but kid? Sometimes we don't like you very much. You seem to make it a point to be as loud as possible, all. the. time. When we ask you to please use an inside-voice, you sometimes cackle in our faces. Your tantrums have reached epic proportions.. it would shock the neighbors, that is for sure. One fatal mistake on my behalf, such as ohhhh I dunno, turning the TV off before bedtime (after allowing YOU to do it, but you stalling, and me giving you way too many chances) and it's ScreamFest 2011. Top of the lungs, body thrown into the middle of the hall, refusing and and all requests (demands) regarding bath/bedtime. Add in a tired fussy baby who unfortunately has to take a bath after you, and it's some goooood times over here!
Two main problems we are dealing with: knowing the difference between on purpose and an accident. And lying. They sort of intertwine, am I right? You lie. A lot. About little inconsequential things, but still. And when I catch you in a lie - and of course, say the word 'lie' - you maniacally laugh.. as you think the word 'lie' is the funniest word ever. You say it, laugh hysterically, repeat 10 times before I can get your attention to move on. Its... maddening. And when I finally got my point across to please not DO THAT, you said 'la'.. and laughed. After calling you on it, you said 'but I didn't say LIE! I said la!'... Oh child. I am in for it, am I not???!
As I type this, (you are outside w/your father and sister) you are ringing the doorbell incessantly, laughing like a nutjob for the entire street to hear. I cannot catch a break, even separated by brick walls.
I could literally go on for pages.. you do so much that irritates all of us these days. But just tonight, at dinner, you thanked me, unprompted, as you do every night. You stopped eating, looked at me, and said 'thank you for dinner!'.. And when your father got home, you immediately asked him how his day was. Totally unprompted and from the bottom of your heart. You have your moments, and lots of them.. but we still know how lucky we are. We won't call SuperNanny... yet.