What a difference a year makes

I have been drafting this email for months and today I realized I just need to post it and summarize later. So here goes:

A year ago my second baby boy was born and I had no idea that he would be the newest love of my life. Or that he would be the spitting image of his brother (sans hair).We took him to breakfast, just Alex and I and he loved to play peek a boo with his dad around the water pitcher. He is bald as a tennis ball and I adore every second of him.

A year in the life:

 
 
 
 
 
 

11 Months

Can you believe this bald guy? His hair is still not growing back in. I decided though it is God’s way of giving me a baby for a while since he is most likely my last baby. And James still totally looks like a baby, which I do love.

But oh he is on the move! He crawls so fast now. One of his favorite things to do is play chase with Alex. He crawls away laughing as fast as he can while Alex crawls behind him. It is freakin’ adorable. He also started pulling up on everything but not really cruising just yet.

His teacher sent a note home the other day asking if he could please have some shoes. Of course poor second baby had no shoes. I dug the one in the photo out of storage but it was too small for his fat foot. I had to make Liv go with me to the outlet malls to get him some Crocs and Robies. He at first refused to have anything to do with shoes, he would scream when you put them on, but now is obsessed. If he sees shoes, anyone’s shoes, he wants to put them on. Now. At least he has stopped trying to lick the bottom of them. Cut to me screaming “NOOOOOOO!” and flying across the room as he licks the bottom of Zach’s shoe from toe to heel.

James has had a ton of ear infections this month and ear tubes are in his future. But he is just the sweetest, happiest baby otherwise. People say he is very serious. I don’t really see it, but of course I am his mother and totally skewed. I think the fact he just stares at people for a good long while without smiling is not helping his case. Most likely he is a genius and that is why he comes across so serious.

James at 10 months

James at 9 months

James at 8 months

James at 7 months

James at 6 months

James at 5 months

James at 4 months
James at 3 months
James at 2 months
James at 1 month

10 Months

James is 10 months! He is getting so big and is now so, so bald. There are just some little wisps of hair around his head with a little tuft in the back, as Zach says, “He has some hair behind him.” His eyes are similar to the color of his number. They look brown at first but really they are a blue/grey with brown flecks in them. Especially compared to Zach’s dark brown eyes, they do not look brown.

He is babbling and saying “uh oh” when something is dropped, when he poops or sees my parents little white dog. I don’t really understand why he calls Weeza “uh oh” but it is amusing. He likes to yell “Daaaaa” at both Norman and Alex. He waves bye-bye and blows kisses and can say “bye-bye” but he prefers to just stare at people when they leave.

James can’t quite kick his leg out to fully crawl yet, but he is doing the army crawl all over the hard wood. He gets a bit frustrated and starts whining when he has to cross carpet. Alex really thinks he is more aggressive than Zach, as when he really wants something he does a quick swipe and grab. We don’t remember Zach being quite so quick or grabby. But still I don’t know that I agree.

However….I did get a note on his 2nd day of daycare regarding him “hugging/grabbing” his new friends. Hmmmm.

His two bottom teeth are through and he is using them to eat everything. With that quick swipe and grab, he gets things that he should not into his mouth. So he has eaten shrimp, french fries, mac and cheese, chicken and grilled cheese. The only thing he still does not like are peaches. Fresh or canned he wants nothing to do with them. He would, however, eat bananas all day long.

James at 9 months

James at 8 months

James at 7 months

James at 6 months

James at 5 months

James at 4 months
James at 3 months
James at 2 months
James at 1 month

9 Months

This month I am actually totally fine with James being 9 months. Most likely because he is actually 10 months now.

But even when it was real…him being 9 months did not make me want to hide under my desk – or in a closet. I love him at this age. He is still so “baby”; chubby and giggly and snuggly. He weighs almost 20lbs which I do not know because I took him to his 9 month check up – that would be good mothering. Nope he has an ear infection, caught early this time. He will get his 9 month check up done later this month. Maybe.

He just cut both his bottom teeth which we are all (his nanny included) glad are here. Those teeth are trying to turn my sweet baby into a monster. Normally he is so happy and loud but not the past few weeks. He turned very clingy and starting chewing on me. Not awesome.

James would like to be moving and I am pretty sure he is going to be a scooter like his brother. (side note: why are my children so weird??) He still sits up then throws himself forward to grab something, showing flexibility that he does not get from the Walls, and pulls himself back upright or falls on his face and starts to roll around. He also pivots around on his bottom and has really gained some movement with that. He can pivot to go backwards. He does not go on all fours, he does not rock. (see photo above of his “stuck” position). He just sits, flails and pivots.

Anyway, normal non-teething James still “talks” constantly and very, very loudly. But my favorite thing he does right now is dance. When you sing the intro to Cat in the Hat which is “Here we go, go, go, on an adventure…” he puts his hands up and wiggles back and forth. Very in-the-club really. He also claps and blows kisses when you say bye-bye. I have the best nanny ever. You know I did not teach him that.

What some of you might have caught on to is that this means my baby watches TV. That is right. Alert the APA immediately. Every morning as Zach is eating his breakfast and watching Cat in the Hat on PBS, James is strapped in next to him eating puffs and singing/trying to grab his brothers’ breakfast. It is the only way I can get ready for work and not have someone talking to me while I try to put on my mascara. And he loooooves Cat in the Hat. I will walk in an both boys will be mesmerized by Cat going into the swirly wirly ocean or bouncing along with a song about putting on layers of clothing. PS I feel no guilt at all. Not one bit. It is not like he is watching Maury or Jersey Shore.

James has had something unfortunate happen this month…he is now sporting the reverse horseshoe. AKA hair on top and around the collar but NO WHERE ELSE. It is very mohawk looking straight on but from the back, the ring of hair at the bottom is pretty terrible. I don’t know what is going on, but every day his hawk gets smaller. I guess this is what people talk about when babies hair falls out and comes back in different? And let me tell you this in between phase is not doing him any favors…but I do like to spike it up. This did not happen to Zach and I don’t appreciate the twinners trying to be different. Let’s keep mommy in her comfort zone for a few more months.

James at 8 months

James at 7 months

James at 6 months

James at 5 months

James at 4 months
James at 3 months
James at 2 months
James at 1 month

Not cooperating

I have really enjoyed capturing James each month for his monthly photo series. It is usually just the two of us and my camera, a white onesie and some fabric taped to the wall. I can almost always get a smile 1 out of about 25 times. Until this month that is.

March was really the first month that he did not want to sit still. He only wanted to pull down the fabric and lay across his feet. Which is what he does all day anyway, but it was especially bothersome when I wanted him to smile and sit up.

It took two separate shoots to get the photo. The first try involved Zach “helping” to get James to smile, which really meant he was helpful for about 30 seconds then he wanted to be IN the photos, not helping with the photos.

Finally I got a second try when of course my fabric had some spots from the iron which I had to Photoshop out. But he was a bit more smiley if still grabby for the fabric.

8 Months – just barely

Phew! That was close. James turns 9 months old on Saturday so I just eeked my way in with his 8 month pictures. So yes, he is going to look pretty similar when I take his 9 month photo. But that is just my life now. It took two different tries to get this just OK picture.

But oh how I love this baby. He is just the best. He is so chubby he will make your arm hurt if you hold him too long, but he looooves to be held. He is reaching and grabbing for everything in a foot radius of him. He pivots around while seated the lunges forward shrieking for the toy/dirty flip flop/pirate sword that is in front of him.

James started eating solid food this month. He loves these Baby Mum Mums which are like dried rice cereal or something. I don’t really know what they are, but they disintegrate into paste and he loves them. He also has had turkey, chicken, cheese, kiwi and french fries. He also eats any bread that is brought to our table at a restaurant. My refrain of “James, please don’t choke, Mommy is not done” is pretty common around here.

He is still crazy loud and vocal. What he likes to do best is, while at the dinner table he throws himself backwards so his head rests of the back of his highchair, sticks both hands in the air and yells, “BAAAAAAAAAA. Ahhh HHHAAAAAA”. Don’t try to talk over him. It is too loud. He says/screams “Ba”, “Ga”, and “Da”. I am working on Ma but he is refusing, naturally.

When I get him in the morning is the best part of my day. I remember this with Zach and it is just awesome. He is laying there talking to himself and kicking and he breaks into the biggest smile when he sees us. And kicks harder. I just love him to bits and don’t know what I did without him. Well, again I DO know what I did; I slept and had a life, but he is worth it. Most days.

PS His eyes are still blue. Yes they have brown freckles in them but they are blue, OLIVIA.

7 Months

How is it possible that James is 7 months already? And how is it possible I say the same thing every month? And how is it also possible that I am a month BEHIND and this baby is now eight months and I can be found cowering in my closet because he is sliding so fast towards a year.

James is awesome. He learned to really sit up in month 7, found his voice and realized his brother is pretty great. He does NOT want to lay down any longer, but sit up and look around at everyone. He says “Ba, ba, ba, ba” really, really loudly. Sometimes he yells it, sometimes he sighs it, sometimes he growls it. The growling is my favorite. It comes out of no where and does not indicate that he is upset. He just wants to growl at you. Now the yelling “ba, ba, ba”; that tells you he is ticked and you better come figure out why or he is going to start to scream silently at which time you need to run over to where you have been ignoring him he has been playing independently or the bottom lip is coming and the loud wailing will commence.

Everything close to James goes straight into his mouth. I hear all the time from Zach, “Mommy don’t let him chew on that, it is wet.” But his awesome big brother makes a trade with James so he can chew on something non-important to Zachary.

James follows Zach with his eyes all over the place. In the mornings Zach will get into the crib with James and talk and play with him. I can always tell when James has spotted Zach as his tone changes to one of excitement and joy. It melts my heart and makes me slightly less annoyed that they are both up well before 7am.