Brantley: 22 months

Brantley,

We have officially entered a new realm of toddlerhood which consists of you saying a bunch of syllables and us usually having no idea what you’re talking about. Well… I take that back. We can usually figure out at least one word of the few you’re trying to say but other than that it’s a crap-shoot and constant guessing game. We try to just get by with saying “Oh yeah???” and move along to another topic but sometime you are persistent that we figure it out. When we ask and continuously guess wrong, you stare at us as if we’re the crazy ones, but when we finally guess right, you shout “YEAH!!!” as if it’s the greatest moment in the history of the world.

You got to spend some time at Grandma and Pa Joe’s this month when they watched you a couple afternoons while Mommy and Daddy had to work and you LOVED watching (and feeding) the fish in the pond in their backyard. Even when we came to pick you up, you didn’t seem like you were in any hurry to leave.

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Shadow is no longer just the family dog, but he’s also your buddy. You give him hugs every night before bed and also before naps, and if you (or we) forget and you get all the way upstairs without a hug you’ll immediately yell “Shadow!!!” and rush to the steps to go back downstairs to hug him. Apparently this is a big deal. And it’s so, so sweet.

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Our neighbors have become good friends of ours and their daughter… well… let’s just say she’s easy on the eyes from the perspective of a nearly 2 year-old. Seeing that she already turned 3 earlier this summer, it’s safe to say you have your way with older women.

Every day when we get home, we run across the yard to her house to see if she’s home. Even when she’s not home, you like to play in her front yard and driveway more than you do your own – it’s just more fun.

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This is one of my favorite photos of you so far… I just had to add it in this post. It was a normal morning getting dropped off with Nana and Papa for the day. Of course you were in your sleeper because that’s comfy and Mama is all about you being comfy when we can get away with it. Your Uncle Cam had dropped by Nana’s house and Papa took this photo of the three of you. It’s just perfect.

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Memories from this month of your life…

  • You are currently obsessed with babies. Every time Zoey comes over, who is only a couple months old now, you want to sit next to her mom and just stare at Zoey. It’s the most precious thing. That is… until Mommy picks her up in which case you get super clingy and try to crawl onto my lap and take back your position as the only baby in my life.
  • Your other obsession is poop and you yell “POOP!” anytime anyone goes to the bathroom.
  • Last year for your birthday you were given a tee-ball set and Daddy found an old Little Tikes basketball hoop that we set it up for you in the front yard… and now you ask for “baseball!” from the moment you wake up until bedtime.
  • Like a true beach kid, you have a few pairs of flip flops but apparently there’s quite a learning curve and you’re still on it – constantly falling and tripping over them.
  • We tried out your balance bike, too but without much luck. Maybe next month.
  • EVERY DAY we play outside. And every day is the best day.

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Brantley, you bring so much joy to our lives and I am so lucky to call you mine.

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Love you,

Mama

 

 

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Brantley: 21 months

Brantley,

This Easter was a little different than years past because we spent the weekend in West Virginia at Snowshoe! The condo was available and the weather looked great so we drove out for one last weekend on the slopes. Well… Daddy hit the slopes while you and I relaxed at the condo, which was the perfect way to spend a quiet weekend away.

On Easter morning, we brought you downstairs to follow the track of jellybeans the Easter bunny left behind leading you to your Easter basket filled with flips flops, sunglasses, a new slinky, and other little toys that were perfect for our little boy. Snowshoe hosted their very own Easter egg hunt later that morning and in sweatshirts and fleece jackets (a little different than what we wear at home), we scoured the village for little plastic eggs filled with treats that Mommy and Daddy would eat later. There were so many kids there you only got a few eggs but you didn’t seem to mind, and at the end of the hunt you were pretty excited about the treasures in your bucket.

Whenever G-Daddy comes over to visit, you grab your walker toy and hand him the popper and for the next half hour the two of you run back and forth, back and forth across the living room floor.

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You and Shadow are becoming best buds – you love to feed him in the mornings and evenings and you also like sitting on him. Apparently this is lots of fun.

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Special moments and memories:

  • Your favorite food is a quesadilla, which you call “dilla” but whenever we go out for Mexican food we have to hide the chips from you because once you see those chips it’s game over.
  • Last month you were interested in Baby Zoey but definitely did NOT want me to hold her. This month you seem to be warming up to her a little more and whenever Christie and Will bring her over, all you want to do is sit next to Christie and stare at Zoey. My little boy, who is only still when he’s asleep, will sit there completely calm for 10 minutes or so while watching Zoey sleep. It’s the most precious thing.
  • Along with your newfound love of reggae music, you’ll now ask for “Marley” when you wake up in the mornings.
  • We started trying Time Out with you this month but you didn’t really seem to get it initially. You would just kinda sit there and look at us while sitting on the steps, kicking your feet, smiling, and obviously not feeling very punished. So we stopped it after a little while and figured we would try again soon. But then every time we would tell you “no” you would immediately point to the steps as if asking if you were going to Time Out. So maybe you understand more than you’re leading on.
  • You’ve added “oh yeah!” and “woah!” to your vocabulary but your favorite word is “dilla-boo” but we have absolutely NO CLUE what it means.
  • And your favorite book is The Very Hungry Caterpillar, especially the part when the caterpillar gets a stomachache. You grab your tummy as soon as we turn to that page and make a grumbling unintelligible spoken version of “stomachache” and it’s absolutely adorable.

We love you, Brantley.

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Love, Your Mama

 

 

Brantley: 20 Months

Brantley,

This month we experienced your first real sickness and it was a BAD one.

You came down with croup and we suffered through six miserable days and sleepless nights. We knew something was wrong the first day when I went to pick you up from Nana and Papa’s house and you were laying on Papa’s chest in the recliner. He said you had been there for a half hour and for our kid who never sits still, this was definitely a red flag.

That night your symptoms got worse and worse. You slept for a couple hours, coughing on and off throughout periods of rest but just after I laid down in bed I heard a weird noise and realized you had gotten sick in your crib. Every time you would cough from that point on, you also got sick and then you just cried and cried afterward. It was so heartbreaking. I brought in a cushy blanket and my pillow and laid next to your crib for a little while but you were only getting worse. Around 2am, I brought you into our bathroom with the essential oils diffuser and the shower running hot and you finally fell asleep in my arms while breathing in the steam. Afterwards, you slept for about 2 hours next to me on the floor of your nursery. I can’t say that I slept very much because I was so worried about you but it was such a relief to see your sick little body resting at least for a little while.

When Daddy got home in the morning and we realized you weren’t getting any better, we called the doctor and made an appointment for later that afternoon. By the afternoon, your breathing was so labored that every time you took a breath in, your neck muscles strained and even Daddy was getting scared. At the pediatrician’s office, they gave you a shot and breathing treatment but even after an hour your breathing was still bad so we were sent to the ER. You eventually started to show improvements while we were at the ER so they sent us home and I slept on your floor again that night since you were still coughing so much. Every time you started a coughing fit you started crying, probably scared that you would get sick again. It was a rough week at the Roberson household, but eventually you started to show little moments of your old self. There were still long periods of the day when you just wanted to be held and I was ok with that.

When you started feeling better, we took advantage of the nice weather and took daily walks around the neighborhood.  There’s a new path that connects our neighborhood with the one behind it and you absolutely love to walk over the bridges along the path.  After such a long week (both physically and emotionally for your poor Mama) it was so beautiful to see you feeling better – running down the path, insisting that we cross the bridge back and forth over and over again, and smiling non-stop.

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Things I want to remember about this month of your life:

  • Every night you sleep with your lovey tucked up underneath your head.
  • Your favorite new word is “WOAH!” and you use it ALL the time.
  • Occasionally you’ll come sit on the couch with me – it happens very infrequently because you just don’t ever sit still – but when it does happen, sometimes you’ll drape your leg over mine just like your Daddy does when we sit on the couch together.
  • I made you a color matching activity with cups and pompom balls for Christmas and it’s currently your favorite toy.
  • Some days you spend the morning or afternoon at the B&H office with Nana and Aunt Laurie and this month you learned all about the backhoe.
  • A few weeks ago you hurt your hand and I offered to kiss it to make it feel better. Sometimes you fake that your fingers are hurting so we’ll kiss them over and over again. And now, every time you get hurt, fall down, or even bump your knee on a toy, you run over to us and ask us to kiss your fingers. I guess you haven’t figured out the correlation yet but it’s pretty cute nonetheless.

 

Happy 20 months, Brantley.

 

Love, Mama

 

Brantley: 19 Months

Brantley,

We spent a weekend at the beach house to celebrate Mommy’s birthday and invited all of our closest friends who conveniently also have babies your age. You, Brayden, and Alexis are really starting to enjoy playing together (rather than just sitting next to each other chewing on books like last year) so it was fun to see you interact.

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And of course we had to recreate this photo:

Overall, it was a great weekend with friends. The parents probably stayed up too late on Friday night only to wake up with you littles the next morning for a full day of toddler play but it was still fun. And somehow we managed to schedule at least one nap time when you were all sleeping at the same time. Two points for the moms!

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Things I’ll always remember:

  • We read you a book or two every night before bed and along with pointing out the fireplaces in Goodnight Moon, you also insist that we look at the moons on every page of whatever book we’re reading and you’d be surprised how many moons are in kids books.
  • You have two new friends! Zoey and Brixton were both born this month and although you haven’t seen much of Brixton yet, you are totally infatuated with Zoey. That is, until your Mama picks her up in which case you start to freak out that you’re being replaced and immediately want to crawl in my lap and push her onto the floor. Needless to say, I don’t get to hold her for very long for fear that she might end up with a head injury.
  • You’re a man of details and you’re learning about small body parts and whenever anyone picks you up you have to point out their nose, eyes, and ears and also check if they’re wearing earrings.
  • On our drive to Nana and Papa’s in the morning we apparently hit school bus central because we pass so many buses on the way and you get so excited every time you see one! The whole way there, all I hear is “More bus! More bus!”
  • You and Daddy love to wrestle on the couch. I can only hope that one day it won’t end in a trip to the hospital for a lacerated forehead.
  • Dance parties are still your favorite and you’ve added reggae to the list of musical genres. I can’t say I’m upset about it, it makes for pretty fun mornings around here.
  • You are mildly… ok moderately obsessed with what we call your “business”. See photo below.

 

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You make life fun. Happy 19 months, Brantley.

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Brantley: 18 months

Brantley,

At 18 months old, you are becoming more of a little boy and less of our little baby day by day.

Your current obsession is the fireplace… go figure. I guess you’ll always be your Daddy’s son. Now that the weather is getting colder, Daddy builds a fire in the fireplace every night he’s home (and Mommy tries when he’s at the station) so you’re learning not to go near it. Our rule is not to stand on the tile in front of the fireplace and you’re so good about following rules at this age that even when there’s no fire and your ball rolls on the tile, you stand there and point at the ball waiting for us to get it for you. Next year you might be jumping off the table and trying to crawl inside the fireplace but at least for now, you’re making it easy. 🙂

Along with your fireplace obsession and growing vocabulary, every time you see a fireplace anywhere you have to point it out and make sure we see it, talk about it, and “ooh aah” over it for a few minutes before moving along. I know all about the fireplaces in all of your books and even at Busch Gardens.

 

Your Papa also taught you about smoke detectors because they scared you for a little while, but again, you always point them out and notice the ones that are missing… I’m make sure your firefighter Daddy gets to replacing those.

Your new words this month are “Dada, Mama, Papa, uh-oh, up, Shadow,” and “apple.” You’ve added a few new word games where you and your Daddy just call for each other back and forth and apparently this is the funniest thing in your little toddler world. I often walk downstairs and hear “Dada! Brantley! Dada! Brantley!” being yelled from the kitchen. IN addition to that, you made your speech therapist Mama so happy with your first 2-word phrase “Dada uh-oh” after throwing your food on the floor from your highchair. Yeah, uh-oh.

And you had your first haircut this month! It was probably about time, too cause your hair was starting to look a little shaggy!

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At Christmastime of course there were lots of events going on for the Roberson family! We strolled down the oceanfront to see the new Christmas Village and also took a day trip to Busch Gardens for Christmas Town! You were so enamored with all of the animals, lights, and attractions at both. It’s so fun to enjoy all of our favorite things at this time of year through your eyes.

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We also got to see Santa at Christmas Town! We didn’t know how well you’d go along with sitting on a random stranger’s lap who happens to look quite frightening while other strangers try to holler at you and get your attention so bright lights can flash in your face… but you just sat there happy as ever. 🙂

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Your favorite part of Christmas Town was the “Deck the Halls” show at Fest Haus. We thought you’d like all the lights and dancing and singing but oh no… all you wanted to do was point out the musician’s instruments. Between the drummer and the guitarist, your eyes were glued for the whole show. Afterward, you insisted that we stay nearby until all the musicians had left and wouldn’t let us move a muscle as long as you could still watch them move their instruments around while they packed up for the break. The bas guitarist walked down to where we were and showed you his guitar, even letting you strum it a few times. He thought it was so cool that you were so interested in the instruments and we were so happy to have had such a cool experience.

On Christmas Eve, it was unusually hot but perfect for our new ridiculous cheesy matching Christmas outfits! We had sweatshirts (which we took off the second we walked outside) but your onesie was perfect all night long. At Nanny and PaPa’s house, we had a delicious dinner and your made your second appearance in the family nativity as Baby Jesus. You didn’t last long and eventually started wandering around the room wanting to see Nanny play the piano while you were sweating through your “swaddling clothes.” It was a little bit of a disaster but what’s Christmas Eve without a little chaos?

On Christmas Day, you finally had a grasp on opening gifts and went to town on your presents! At first, you really seemed interested in the blocks and fire truck toy but as soon as you opened your little broom it was game over. Later in the day, we drove over to your Grandma’s and Pa Joe’s house where we celebrated Christmas with Daddy’s side of the family.

All the boys got musical instruments for Christmas, so after family band practice, we headed home to ride your tricycle and set up your drum set… and that was the end of it. All you wanted to do from that moment on was play drums. (The broom got the boot.)

On New Years Day, we invited friends over and wrangled all the kids together for a photo on the couch. Of course, it didn’t work very well but at least we tried.

A few things I don’t want to forget about this month:

  • You never want me to leave the house and cry when I sit you in your highchair and Nana and Papa’s house because you know I leave while you eat breakfast.
  • You are so ticklish under your arms, behind your knees, on the bottoms of your feet and under your chin. We love to torture you with tickles.
  • Your favorite toys are your drum set (obviously), your straw and cup set where you push the straws through the holes in the lid, and you love to bounce a balloon around the house.
  • Your favorite books are Chicka Chicka Boom Boom and I Love You Through and Through, especially how Daddy reads them.
  • You love to help Daddy light the fire every night.
  • Whenever you get hurt you ask us to kiss your fingers, no matter what body part is hurting.

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You are so much fun and every day we love watching you explore your world. Every morning you wake up and go sit at your drum set for morning band practice and it gives us just a little taste of the vibrant, energetic, and exciting life you have ahead of you.

Happy 18 months, Brantley.

Love, Mama

 

Brantley: 17 months

Brantley,

Your PaPa went to heaven this month. It was a really hard time for our family as we watched the patriarch and backbone of our family’s heritage fight lunch cancer all the way until the last day of his life. He and Nanny spent their anniversary dinner at the nursing home with take-out dinner and fake candles, surrounded by pictures of them during earlier years that your Nana and Aunt Laurie brought in for the occasion. Nanny stayed with him almost every night and we visited often. Every time you went to visit with me or Daddy, PaPa’s face seemed to light up and you just brought this beautiful, wonderful energy and uplifting spirit to the room. He was always so happy to see you and even when speaking was so uncomfortable and painful for him, he always tried to talk through the pain. When speaking was too hard, you both would just stand there and look at each other and somehow that was enough.

Ultimately, God called him home and it was very very tough for all of us. You ask about PaPa often and I know there’s no way to explain to you the loss of someone so close to you but we encourage you to talk about him and we talk about him often to keep his memory alive for you.

Perhaps the most difficult moment for us to watch was when we all went back to the house for visitation after his memorial service. When you walked into the kitchen, you immediately went over to stand under the fan, pointed to the switches on the wall, and started looking around the room from one of us to the other. We quickly realized that you were looking for your PaPa and you seemed so confused that you couldn’t find him. In such an innocent and simple way, it broke our hearts and it will always be a moment I remember from those most difficult days.

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It’s no surprise that we attended the first Christmas parade of the year, which actually happened the week of Thanksgiving but we didn’t care… we were thrilled to take you to your second ever Christmas parade!

Daddy was working on Thanksgiving, so we started the day off at Nanny and Papa’s house and helped cook Thanksgiving dinner for the whole family. Well, you weren’t very much help but you did a great job supervising.  Later, we drove out to the station for dinner with Daddy and you get more and more excited every time we see the big trucks. Daddy was also happy to have you visit him on Thanksgiving, since it’s one of his favorite holidays.

This year we did our anniversary family photos at Nanny and Papa’s house and the photos were just beautiful and really captured your fun little spirit.

Things to remember about this month…

  • You love pushing the dining table chairs around the living room like you’re pushing a walker.
  • You also love sweeping the floor with our big broom. Maybe one day soon it’ll actually be helpful. Right now you just push the dirt around the floor that Shadow brings in from the backyard.
  • For some reason, you think it’s hilarious to hover over your milk cup while it’s sitting on the floor to drink it without ever having to touch the cup.
  • You are constantly trying to make everyone laugh. If you do something that makes us laugh or giggle, you keep doing it over and over and over again.
  • I still sing to you every night before I lay you down in your crib and you’ve started patting my back while I sing to you.
  • In addition to feeding Shadow every morning and night (carrying his bowl over to his crate, setting it inside the crate, and telling him “ok” while you clap… cause that’s what we do), we also added checking the mailbox to your daily chores. But now you also want to check EVERYONE’S mailbox down the whole street so we have to keep you at bay for now and make sure our neighbors aren’t missing any important bills.

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We love you, little man.

Happy 17 months!

Love, Your Mama

 

Brantley: 16 Months

Brantley,

Your 16th month of life included many special moments, both joyous and heartbreaking.

IMG_0154.jpgYour beloved PaPa became ill and was hospitalized. He was quickly diagnosed with lung cancer and both he and Nanny, along with your Nana, Aunt Laurie, and Uncle Tim were taking turns staying with him all day and overnight. We also took trips to the hospital to visit as often as we could and I think you really brightened his day.

Last month you really started taking to music and this month you’ve begun showing specific preferences for your favorite styles of music. Right now you’re on a bluegrass kick and you’ll shake your head until we change it to bluegrass.

Your version of hugs and kisses now involves you leaning your head toward our faces for a kiss on the forehead and resting your head on our shoulder for a hug. It’s the sweetest thing.

They say boys love their mamas and you have certainly shown that this month. Whenever I’m holding you and Daddy tries to give me (or us) a hug, you push him away! If you could talk you would probably say, “That’s MY Mommy.” Sorry to break it to you kid, but I was your dad’s before I was yours. Luckily, he can share.

You are still nuts and you love to make us laugh. Not much has changed in that department. With each new day we see a new crazy and ridiculous facial expression that makes us crack up and once you find one that works, you’ll do it over and over again hoping for the same reaction. You’re such a ham.

One of your favorite picture books stays under our coffee table and you love to look through it with Daddy pointing to all the objects you know. Conveniently, a fire truck is on the first page.

Shadow is still your best friend – other than Mommy – and you’ve started trying to say his name! It’s so cute!

Halloween was our big event of the month. You have a perpetual combover so when we were trying to figure out what to do for our Halloween costumes this year, I eventually thought to incorporate his combover and Trump immediately came to mind. Being that he was running for President, it seemed like an obvious choice. So we went for it and we went all out!

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After turning your wagon into the campaign mobile with a few decorations, finding  great deal on a toddler suit from Burlington, and setting up your portable highchair in the wagon so you couldn’t wander or fall out, we knew our part of the costumes were next. And what better way to accompany a Presidential candidate than to have his campaign managers along for the ride?

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We strolled up to the Back Bay Brewery halloween festival up the street and when we arrived, so many people were pointing him out, trying to take pictures of him or with him, and it seemed like everyone really loved his costume. Someone mentioned that we should enter Brantley in the costume contest. We didn’t even know there was a costume contest but figured we might as well give it a shot. A little while later the contest was called and Brantley WON!

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Happy 16 months, Trump.

Love, Your Mama

Brantley: 15 Months

Brantley,

First and foremost: you’re nuts. You love to dance and shake your groove thing all day every day and the first thing you do when we bring you downstairs is point at the TV to make sure we turn your music on as soon as possible

You finally said your first word! I was pulling into Nana and Papa’s house to drop you off before going to work and as soon as I opened the door to get you out of your carseat, your eyes lit up and you immediately said, “Papa!” He wins.

You love peas and carrots but your absolute favorite food is still banana. We can’t even say the word “banana” without you flipping out. God forbid one of us wants to actually eat a banana because it’s a hot mess of a tantrum.

Tortilla chips are also a favorite so whenever we’re at Plaza Azteca we have to wait to get our chips until after you eat so you’ll actually EAT your healthy food before gorging yourself on chips. Every kid’s gotta have at least one junk food right? Well, this is yours.

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You’re still sleeping over 12 hours a night. Amen!

At our recent doctor’s appointment, you were at the 95th percentile for weight! Big boy!

In the mornings, you wake up and play quietly in your crib until we come to get you. Even when you wake up a little early, we love listening to you sing and talk to yourself… and then we love to be able to fall back asleep for a few extra minutes.

Finally, you’re walking! And that also means we take lots of walks through the neighborhood. We usually end up at Back Bay Brewery. Yep, a baby in a bar. That’s how you roll.IMG_3076You’re starting to sing along with music which makes this musical mama very happy.

When we get you up out of your crib after naps or in the mornings, your new favorite game is to point to all the things in your room: surfboard, baby canvas, lamp, anchor, shoes, bell, ladder, and fire truck.

Although you seem to ignore Shadow as you climb up over him to get on the couch, he has also become a playmate and you play fetch with him frequently throughout the day. Unfortunately, your attempts to throw the ball to him usually result in a ball to the face. Poor Shadow.

Happy 15 months, Bug.

Mama

Brantley: 14 Months

Brantley,

We can’t give highlights of this month of your life without including bike rides. We take a bike ride with you almost every day and you absolutely love it! You get so excited when we put your helmet on and you love to wave to people as they pass by, tilt your head back so you can see your Daddy, and point to anything you see that strikes you as interesting

IMG_2923Sometimes you wake up early in the mornings and we can hear you singing in your crib through the monitor. It might be the sweetest sound we’ve ever heard.

As much as I would love to say we always enjoy lots of cuddles throughout each day, reading books in your rocker, lots of hugs and kisses, etc. but let’s be honest… you really don’t like to be held much. You’d rather crawl around on your own, crawl up the steps on your own, and if could, you’d probably crawl into your crib on your own. But we wouldn’t dare let that happen because the only time you’ll let us hold you is before bed and we take advantage of those precious moments whenever we can.

You don’t let that “beautiful” moment last too long though. You always pinch to back of my arm while I gently rock you and sing our favorite song and when that fails to make me laugh, you pop your head up off my shoulder with the most mischievous smile and try to take my glasses off. You must think it’s the most hilarious thing in the world.

You toss and turn before bed, but by the time you fall asleep you’re always in the craziest position. More often than not, you sleep with one foot sticking out of the crib and the other propped up high on the crib rails.

You’re finally babbling with repeated syllables “mamma, dadada, papapa.”

You’re new favorite toy is a ball and hammer toy that has a xylophone under it… and you’re getting pretty accurate hitting that ball, too!

You also like to play with two toys by putting one into another one. Apparently it was a mind blowing discovery because you’re constantly trying to find one object that will fit into another one.

You said your first word!!! You’d been babbling “mama, dada, papa” for a few weeks but without any real meaning or obvious reference to a person until one day when we pulled into Mimi and Papa’s driveway. The moment I opened your door your eyes lit up and you said, “Papa!” Papa beat us to it.

We love you, Bug.

Love, Mama

Brantley: 13 Months

Brantley,

I haven’t written on this blog since your birthday post but I have been writing notes each month about the little developments we see day by day and wanted to let you know we won’t forget them. So it’s my hope and plan that I can continue to write monthly to highlight our most memorable moments and developments. I know your Mimi, Grandma, and Aunt Laurie will read these, in addition to a couple of your (favorite) cousins, but for the most part, I want to write these little notes and memories so that one day your Daddy and I can read back through them, remembering each milestone through tearful smiles and celebrating your life one moment at a time.

IMG_2590When we found out we were having a boy, everyone told me boys love their mamas and you are just now starting to show us that sometimes you just need your Mama. You’re also a little more hesitant to be passed off to other people and when you don’t want to leave my arms you tuck your head down onto my shoulder or in the crook of my neck and hold on tight. I eat it up every time.

You got musical instruments for your birthday and YOU LOVE THEM. Other than the busy board that Papa built, your musical instruments are your favorite toys. It’s taken a couple weeks for you to learn how to play each one – the tambourine and drum sticks were obvious but the triangle took a little longer – but now our “family band practice” has become a nightly ritual that involves a lot of banging and loud, loud noise. Poor Shadow.

This month you finally started crawling! At the beginning of our week at the beach house you were army crawling but by the end of the week you started to show some attempts at crawling with your belly off the ground. Cousin Clint says we should knock you down and capitalize on your perfect army crawl by dressing you up in camo and posting you all over YouTube but I think we’ll wait on total domination of YouTube at least until you start talking.

Our bedtime ritual now includes a new favorite song, “You Are My Sunshine.” We sing it every night before bed with your Shadow blanket tossed over my shoulder and your lovey cuddled in tight. These memories may be my favorite of all.

We will have lots of wonderful memories from our week at the beach house with family. Other than Clint’s obsession with your current method of traveling across the floor, we’ll also remember long afternoons out on the beach with you and Shadow, huge family dinners in the evenings, and early mornings with your Papa and PaPa who were usually the only ones awake when we were up with you at 7am.

At the end of the month, we went to the annual Houck family reunion and you LOVED your first boating experience! You weren’t so thrilled with the life jacket and screamed whenever we tried to put it on you (parents of the year). You also took a liking to your Aunt Jane at the reunion lunch because she had a bag full of grapes and once you made that discovery, her lap was the only place you wanted to be for the rest of the afternoon.

Lately you’ve been sleeping with your legs crossed, just like you did when you were in my belly.

Oh, and you think biting people is hilarious.

Love you,

Mama

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