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St. John 2017

Back at the beginning of April we went to St. John with Mimi, Papa, Auntie Kristen, Uncle Dana, Auntie Elle, Parker, and Rhys. It is one of our all-time favorite vacation spots. Erik and I had been two times prior and never with kids. Kids made it a very different kind of trip!

We had perfect weather for all but one day, excellent company, and well, paradise! The girls were great travelers. It was a lovely time with family. While words can’t do the trip justice, the pictures below do show quite a lot!

 

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Sonora Beverlie: Ten Months

Dear Sonora,

The last month was such a big month for you! You went on your first plane ride, you cut several new teeth, you learn new tricks everyday and you can get wherever you need to go. You are indeed mobile so some serious baby-proofing is happening at our house!

We are amazed at your understanding this month. You understand so many words. When we ask if you want to read books, you get so very excited. You know where the fan is and point to it. You love to clap hands, kick feet, wave, and touch your nose and understand all those words! You can also sign “more” and “all done”.

As we mentioned – you get anywhere crawling. Mostly you want to walk though. You can pull yourself up sometimes but do not have the balance yet. We hold your hands to let you walk and when we stop, you get so angry and throw your head back and scream in a but of a tantrum. This past month you also learned how to get from laying to sitting.

As a result of this newfound freedom and all these motor skills you are acquiring, sleep is rough at night. You wake yourself up sitting or standing before you are actually even awake. You must be practicing in your sleep. Oddly enough, your naps have improved by leaps and bounds! You take two naps now-one is usually an hour and the other over an hour and a half and you have even taken a few two hour naps!

You are still not that interested in food but your chewing is improving. Must be all those teeth! You have 2 bottom teeth, one top fang and just cut the other 3 top teeth. You did eat butternut squash lasagna a few nights in a row earlier in the month and loved that. You also seem to enjoy grilled cheese and blueberries.

One of our favorite things you do this month is when we are reading Bright Baby Animals and we get to the kitty cat page-you always give the kitty cat a big kiss! Sometimes the guinea pigs and the bear get kisses- but always the kitty cat. You and your sister are crazy cat ladies.

Now that you are mobile, the sibling rivalry is definitely more present. Once you crawled up to Isla and snatched a toy from her. You are almost as big as she is so she can’t push you around as much anymore. Sometimes you giggle and play so well together though.

You were an awesome little traveler on our trip to St. John. You go with the flow so well and loved the water and the beach. That trip deserves a big post of its own as soon as we find the time to go through a thousand pictures or so!

There is so much more that I can write and I think I will have more and more now that I get to spend all day with you and your sister. We think the next month will bring first steps!

Lots of love to our sweet, loud, and full-of-fun little firecracker!

Sonora Beverlie: Nine Months

Dear Sonora,

Today you are out as long as you were in! In theory at least…you did try to hang out in the womb as long as possible and were 10 days late so I suppose we technically have 10 more days until that milestone.

We had a pretty awesome last month. You are picking up new things so quickly! I think you started waving or clapping towards the end of 7 months and now you are proficient at both of those things. I love how as soon as anyone says “clap hands” or sings “If You’re Happy and You Know It” you immediately have to stop whatever you are doing to smile and clap. You also do “so big” which is so cute. You are now crawling! I think it is official. You can get from sitting to crawl position like a pro. You get up on all fours and rock back and forth but to move forward you get down and do the army crawl. I’m pretty sure you will have the crawl mastered by the end of the week though.

We finally have you on a schedule. You nurse 4-5 times per day, eat 3 meals, and take 2 naps most days. Since we figured out that you were doing most of your eating overnight, we nipped that in the bud. We finally made progress with crying it out too and now you go to sleep on your own so well. You slept through the night for a week straight, got your first 2 teeth (!) so you had a few rough nights, then a bad cold, so more rough nights. I am happy to report you recovered quickly though and are back to sleeping well in your bed with maybe one quick wake-up. Such huge progress!

You are such a problem solver. I love to watch you work through a challenge and find a way to make it work for yourself. One example – you could not pick up banana pieces because they were slippery, so you started lapping them up like a puppy dog! You do that a lot now. It is hysterical.

One of your favorite things is the tub. You sit in the tub like a big girl now and get SO excited as soon as you are naked. Thankfully, this translated to enjoying the pool at your first swim lesson. You loved taking everything in and did not cry at all!

Mommy has big news too this month…I quit my job! Since coming back from leave, it has been a big stress on the family even though we could not have had a better schedule and such a wonderful babysitter. We have spent weekends just preparing for the week ahead and not enjoying. Mommy was always so stressed just getting from day to day and the additional stress of work. After being sick for all January and also having no vacation time, combined with very little take home pay after childcare is paid, it was time to take a pause for a bit. My last day is the end of March just before we leave for St. John. We are so sad to not get to see Pam so much, but thankfully she lives next door so hopefully we still see her a lot. I can’t wait to spend more time with my sweetie-pies in the months to come and being more involved with our community.

As I mentioned, we have a big month ahead! Your first big trip and airplane ride is just around the corner. We can’t wait! Well… hopefully the flight is not a disaster for our fellow passengers…

Thank you for continuing to be such a joy to take care of! We just love how you fit into our family and make us laugh and smile. You are just too darn cute for words!

Love,

Mommy

Sonora Beverlie: Eight Months

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Dear Sonora,

In this first year of life you have already lived to see the Pats win a Super Bowl. It was a very exciting one at that!

You sure know how to slide in some milestones at the last minute! Just under the 8 month mark you started waving and clapping your hands. You started playing peekaboo earlier in the month and it is just so cute. You get this smirk on your face and then you start hiding your eyes.

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I have probably said this before, but you are so social and just love new experiences. You have been going to story hour with Pam who has said that you love it. I was able to take you last week and it was so fun to watch you try and interact wit everyone and get so excited and do your loud grunt giggle! You seem to be trying to mimic the teacher when she sings songs. You are sure going to love going to Miss Stacy next month! Even when we took you to watch sister swim at the Y, you were in your element watching all the activity. I could tell you wanted to be able to get off my lap and get out there and play. You also start swimming lessons next month and we think you are going to be quite the fishy.

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In some ways the last month was very rough. One way was illness – you had the flu and yet another double ear infection and we had to bring you to the doctor several times for antibiotic injections. Needless to say, we will be seeing ORL soon. The other way was sleep. We finally decided it was time for a little tough love and used the cry it out approach. It was not cold turkey and it is an ongoing process. We do go in periodically to check on you when you are having a screaming fit. And after midnight, I am still feeding you since you are not night weaned yet. We’ll have to drop that soon so we are working on getting you to eat more during the day. You fall asleep on your own when you first go down at night very well – no tears tonight! The middle of the night is still a work in progress. As are naps – they are still short but we let you fall asleep on your own. You definitely protest those pretty hard.

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In the eating department, nursing is still your favorite. This past month, when I got sick, my supply dropped dramatically and we had to break into our freezer stash and used a lot up. So we are supplementing formula here and there when I don’t pump enough now. It takes some stress off and in reality you probably only get a formula bottle once every 2-3 days. We’re still doing baby led weaning. You tried a lot of new things this past month but still aren’t that into eating. You are very engaged for a few bites and then you just want to play with the food or lose interest. I’ve tried to sneak in some purees where I feed you but you will not let me feed you since you started right off feeding your self. Your pincher grip is getting better so hopefully that will help? I’m not sure what to do here but am trying not to stress and just give you many opportunities and options to eat. You seem to have developed more of a taste for yogurt. You really like pears and we gave you toast fingers with avocado spread on them the other day and loved that. You very much loved pesto chicken burgers and carrot/zucchini/apple muffins.

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We love what a force you are these days – always wanting to be part of the action. It has been especially fun this month to see how much you are loving your daddy. You get so excited when he gets home from work! You still have to compete with big sister for attention but you sure do a good job and seem to be succeeding. We love you Sonnybuns!

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Outtake:

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Sonora Beverlie: Seven Months

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Dear Sonora,

You have been showing us your personality from day one, but I think this last month we really started to see that a major trait is that you are  loud! You want to be heard! You just love to scream, even if it is just a fun playful scream. If you are not screaming, you are blowing berries, or saying “Dadadadada” nonstop. Sometimes you are even trying some other sounds and it really sounds like you are saying “Hi” sometimes.”

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You absolutely love playing with your toys and it is amazing how fast you pick up what to do with a toy and play with it purposefully. For example, for Christmas you got a toy that you use a hammer to hit balls with and they go down a series of chutes. You love to hit the balls and watch them go down, then pick up the balls. Once your sister took away the hammer and you just lost your mind. It was so funny – you turned red and started shaking and yelling. I can’t believe you already know to get mad when someone takes away a toy you were happily playing with. The sibling rivalry is starting already!

Other toys you like lately are the Zany Zoo or anything with a bead maze, toys that have pieces that you can spin, and anything silicon that you can gnaw on. I’m expecting to see teeth at any moment but I thought that starting at 6 months for Isla and her first tooth finally appeared at 14 months.

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You started to eat table food this past month. We are skipping purees and giving baby-led weaning a try. So far you have tried: avocados (this was your first food), bananas, apples, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, meatballs, spaghetti squash, kiwi, peas, mango. I try to give you long pieces of these things that you can grab and gum. You can pick even the slippery things up so well. We can’t say that you have too much interest at this point. We try to offer you food once or twice a day right now and sometimes you bring a few pieces to your mouth, sometimes you just smoosh and play with it. Every so often you gum a piece off and then  spit it out. I’m not sure you have swallowed much at this point. I think your favorite thing so far has been the sweet potato. You also make classic baby eating for the first time faces with a lot of drama, shock and awe! You do like the social aspect of eating though and like to have something on your plate when we are all at the table, even if you aren’t really eating it yet.

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We had a rough month sick-wise. We started off with your third double ear infection in a row and ended with the flu. We knew you were exposed so we were able to give you Tamiflu and it definitely reduced your severity so it could have been worse for you than it was. I do think you are working on another ear infection though.

What else happened this month? You enjoyed your first Christmas! There was a lot of excitement and you handled it so well. You also started sitting up so well on your own. You will stay seated for quite awhile and only topple from time to time. You are even starting to sit in the tub sometimes. Speaking of the tub, you love love love the tub and love to splash!

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Thing you don’t like this month – getting your nose wiped, going into your room because you know it means it is time to sleep and you fight that like none other. Sleep continues to be a big issue – mommy doesn’t even want to talk about it. Let’s hope that changes this coming month. We know it won’t change without some tough love which we are dreading but also needing to try. We just can’t catch a break with sickness to be given the chance!

You who has always wanted nothing more than to be held are suddenly pushing us away when you see something you want to play with. I think this is more of your personality coming out as you can do more. You are wanting so bad to be independent and get out there and explore this world!

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