Letters to Elizabeth, 9 months

Oh my sweet girl, I can hardly believe that you are nine months old already! Time is going by way too fast and no matter how I try, I can’t seem to get it to slow down. You’ve developed a very predictable routine over the last couple of months–you wake up close to six, take naps at nine and one, and you are most definitely ready for bed by seven. You are eating three meals a day now and seem to really enjoy food. At some meal times you can out-eat your brother. He better watch out, because you don’t mess around when it comes to meal time.

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Like most children, you love being outside. We have had some really nice days the last month and we’ve been on walks, taken trips to the park, and just hung out in the yard, you love it all. You love to swing and you seem to be perfectly content hanging out on a blanket and watching the world go by. There are so many things to see and talk to!

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Speaking of talking, you’ve perfected your da-da-da and seem to use it for just about everything, until you get mad (which rarely ever happens). When you are mad all you can say is ma-ma-ma-ma. You seem to be talking a lot though and there is a lot of inflection in your voice, which is fun to hear.

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You have such a happy personality and sometimes I just can’t believe how much you smile, giggle and laugh. When you get excited you start twirling your hands and kicking your feet. And you have the best “cheese” face I have every seen. You grin and squint and make an “eeee” sound that is just precious beyond words. You aren’t moving too much yet and I’m ok with that. You roll some, sit with easy and can bend in ways I can only imagine bending. Sometimes you bend so far forward that you end up on your belly.

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This month we celebrated your first Easter and birthdays of your brother, cousin and great grandfather, took your first trip to the golf course and first train ride. You aren’t sleeping through the night, but your sleep has improved. The last month was relatively healthy too! You’ve created your own little spot in this family of ours and I am so grateful that you have.

We love you baby girl. More that you will ever know.

Love

Momma

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William turns 4

When your first baby turns one, you throw a huge party and invite the whole family and as many friends as you can cram into your house. You spend the day so excited for your sweet boy who is no longer a baby, that you don’t have time to think about how much has changed in just one year.

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When he turns two, you dial back the party. You realize he likely won’t remember much of the day, but still make the day special for him. Is not as big of a deal because you’ve already done the birthday thing.

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Three means he’s no longer a toddler, but he’s still your little boy. He understands more and is excited for his birthday party. And then all of a sudden, your sweet baby is turning four.

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Four years old seems so much older to me than three years old. Are you sure that another year didn’t sneak in there? All of a sudden there is a boy running around the house, having adult-like conversations with you. He’s a year away from starting kindergarten!  I didn’t cry on his first birthday, or his second, or his third. This one may get me though.

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William, four years ago you made me a momma. You have turned into such a smart, rambunctious, sweet, ornery, funny boy and momma and daddy love you so very much.

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Easter Pictures 2015

Easter weekend was chalk full of family fun this year. Our nephew celebrated his third birthday on Saturday and Sunday was full of church, egg hunts, good food and lots of family time. It’s weekends like this that make me realize how nice it is to live in the same town as most of our close family.

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Will was so into egg hunting, it’s about all he could talk about for the week leading up to Easter. If he wasn’t talking about the eggs he was telling us the Easter story with astounding detail. Will attends a wonderful Christian preschool with a wonderful teacher, whom we adore. She shares her love for Christ in a way that excites the kids. Anyway, Will could have hunted eggs all day long if we would have let him. There were multiple rounds of hiding and hunting throughout the day.

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Lizzy like to hold the eggs and gum them. She’s not moving yet, so she wasn’t much competition when it came to hunting for the eggs. Next year though? Oh boy. Will better look out!

It seems like we either get lots and lots of pictures on the holidays, or we wind up taking one family picture at the very end of a very long day. Sunday, we took lots, so please excuse my over-sharing. That’s all you really come here for anyway, right? :)

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Letter to Elizabeth, month 8

Dear sweet, baby girl,

You aren’t as much of a baby anymore, although there are time where I wish you would stay little forever. You are really starting to interact with us now. You tell your brother when you are not happy that he stole your toy. You smile and bang on your tray during meal times when you like what you are having. You grin and giggle and kick your legs when we come over to you and cry when we walk away.

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We spent most of the last month under the weather. Your brother was pretty good about sharing his preschool germs with the rest of the family. You made your first trip to the emergency room when you started having a little trouble breathing while battling RSV. After a breathing treatment and a good suction, you were in much better shape.

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You’ve perfected sitting and can now sit for long periods of time all by yourself. Eventually you start to topple over, but you seem to enjoy sitting and playing and being able to look all around. You are constantly grabbing for anything you can get your hands on–toys, blankets, noses, cheeks. Anything is fair game. You still aren’t much for rolling, but you’ve been lifting you bottom and arching your back recently. You can work your way around and around just by doing this.

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You started really eating this month. Before it seemed like you didn’t really know why we were putting these foreign purees in your mouth, but something clicked in the last month and you seem to really be enjoying eating now. You don’t mind being spoon fed, but you also like to have something to pick up and eat yourself too. Sweet potatoes are definitely your favorite, but other than peas, I haven’t found anything that you will turn dow.

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Sometimes it’s hard to believe that you have been with us for eight months now and other times it seems like you’ve been here forever. I say it every month, but you are so darn happy. Even when you were sick, you tried so hard to still be happy. You started cuddling into my shoulder and I like to think that it’s your way of giving me a hug. It makes my heart swell and tears come to my eyes. Baby girl, we love you more and more each day.

Lots of love,

Momma

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Letters to Elizabeth, 7 months

Dear sweet Elizabeth Kate,

You really gave us a run for our money this month. I feel like we spent the entire month try to get you to sleep. You seemed to only be able to nap for a maximum of 45 minutes at a time. Night time sleep was marginally better. I was convinced that it was just a phase at first, but as the days dragged on into weeks I knew something had to change. I tried everything I could think of before taking you into the doctor, just to make sure nothing was wrong. You were deemed perfectly healthy–thankfully and after trying a few things, we found that you sleep much better on your tummy. I was a nervous wreck to leave you on your belly, but you are old enough now that doctor said it was perfectly fine. Thank goodness because it made quite a difference!

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You perfected your tummy to back rolling this month. In fact keeping you on your tummy can be quite the challenge when you are awake. You’ve also showed some interest in rolling from you back to your tummy. I think you may have done it once or twice, but can’t be sure that you didn’t have a little help from your brother. He wouldn’t admit to helping you, but I have my suspicions. You are getting pretty good at sitting up, but you still need a little support. You aren’t quite ready to sit on your own just yet, but I’m sure its not too far away.

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We tried a few more solid foods this month. You seemed to enjoy sweet potatoes, but you weren’t really sure about carrots, peas or bananas. Most of the time the food still gets spit back out, but you’ve gotten better at swallowing little bits. You open your both big and wide when you see the spoon coming your way. Sometimes I’m not fast enough with the next bite and when I look up, your mouth is already wide open, like a little baby bird.

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We took you to your first college basketball game and celebrated your first Valentines Day. I want to remember you just as you are right now. I don’t  ever want to forget your toothless grin, whispy hair, or roll polly arms and legs. I hope that you always think that your brother is as funny as you do right now (ha!) and that you will always feel the overwhelming love and joy that you bring to our lives.

20150222_131447 Sweet girl, we love you so.

Mom

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Letters to Benjamin

Dear sweet boy,

You have been on my heart a lot the last few weeks. Yesterday was particularly tough, for no reason that I can put my finger on. Most days are good, but some days the ache in my heart is so strong it causes my eyes to fill with tears throughout the day.

Your due date was just over a year ago. I see so many little boys and girls turning one and it just makes me wonder how life would have been different if you were here. Your big brother is so in love with your little sister and I know that same would have been true had he had the chance to meet you. I wonder how your bond would have been different from the bond that Will and Lizzy have. Would you have fought? Or would you have been the best of friends?

As I was driving your brother to school yesterday I saw the smallest bit of a rainbow in the sky. I looked over and over again because it seemed a bit improbable that it should be there. It hadn’t rained and the sky was filled with clouds, but there you were. It was as if you were there, with us, for just a moment.

I hope you know how much we love you.

Love

Mom

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Letters to Elizabeth, 6 months

Dearest Elizabeth,

Oh my sweet girl, we’ve been blessed with you for half a year now. It seems like just yesterday we were finally able to bring you home from the hospital. What a fast six months it has been. You are such a happy baby. I think I’ve written that just about every month so far, but it’s true. You smile and giggle all of the time. You are rarely fussy and seem to be able to go with the flow. You think your brother is pretty funny. He can get you to laugh easier than anyone else. You watch him intently as he runs laps around the house, often narrowly avoiding you on the floor.

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You rolled from your tummy to your back this month, although, you don’t seem very motivated to do it at the moment. There were two days out of the month where you rolled over and over and now it seems like you’ve forgotten how. I’ll lay you on your tummy and you lift your arms and legs off of the floor like you are sky diving. You are tolerating tummy time better than you used to though. We’ve also been practicing your sitting. With a little bit of support, you do very well. Toys have become more interesting and you will grab and shake rattles. Most things go straight to your mouth though.

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You tried your first bite of solid foods this month–butternut squash. You didn’t hate it, but you really weren’t sure what to do with it in your mouth. Most of it ended up on your face. I think we’ll wait just a bit longer before we get too serious about solid foods. You do know how to talk though. Some days you have lots and lots to say. You are making lots of different sounds and today Will and I both heard you say “uh-oh”. I’m sure that you didn’t really know what you were saying but we both got a kick out of it. You love playing in your bebePOD seat, but especially love the little toy that attaches to the tray.

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Life is getting a little more predictable. There are still times you throw me for a loop, but most days we have a pretty good schedule going. We had a rough week with some illness and that has seemed to throw your good sleeping into a tailspin. I don’t remember the last time either of us had a good nights sleep, but any time you’re ready, I’m ready. Sleep or no sleep though, you are a joy. Daddy and Will and I love you very, very much.

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Love

Mom

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