Looking Back to Christmas

It is cold outside, but hot in my house as I sit here typing. The wood stove is going, and as usual, it just about heats us out. I’m considering opening a window (even though it is 30 degrees outside). The baby is taking his midday nap. I feel pent up in here. I love being home but I just want to get out and accomplish something today…I guess writing a post will be a small accomplishment of sorts, so here I am.
Our Christmas was really good this year. Every year is a little different. This year it seemed that there were multiple family events to attend. Which was really fun for the baby, and good for us to see everyone! Something that my side of the family (not my husbands) is dealing with is the fact that my oldest sister and her family are leaving the country at the end of the month to be missionaries. I can only speak for myself and my feelings, but it has been bittersweet for me. I know that they are following God’s call on their lives and what they are doing is right and amazing and so much more. And I’m so happy, for them and the people they are going to minister to. But my own selfishness sometimes gets the better of me and I know I am going to miss them all terribly. So, I’m struggling with that and it comes and goes.
But other than their leaving at the back of my mind, Christmas was special. Getting to spend time with loved ones. Not feeling too rushed to get anywhere. Remembering the true meaning of Christmas and trying to pass that along to my little boy. I call him the “baby” but he’s really a toddler. I had a lot of sweet, short conversations with him about Christmas and why we celebrate. I also tried to teach him thankfulness this season. It warmed my heart that he would say or sign thank you (when prompted) to his gift givers. Even at this young age, he is able to learn that important lesson.
So anyhow, I’m kind of rambling. But I hope that all of the people reading this had a special Christmas season as well. Until next time!

Trunk or Treat

Tonight was the first time that my little boy has gone “trick or treating”.  Actually, it was really “trunk and treating” since the event was held at our church and the kids just go around and get candy from everyone.  Halloween has never really been a holiday I’ve been fond of.  Maybe because I don’t like a lot of the scary stuff that goes along with it.  There is a darkness behind certain things that I don’t care to expose myself to.  But this evening was fun because it was about spending time with others, and after getting the candy in the parking lot, we got to go inside and eat, play games and just enjoy the fellowship of others.

What I enjoyed more than anything was seeing how much fun my little boy had.  I got him a blue, plastic pumpkin to put his candy in and he held on to that pumpkin for the entire trunk or treat time outside.  The first two times he got candy, the “givers” had to put it in the pumpkin for him.  By the third time, he got the hang of it and was taking the candy and putting it in the pumpkin.  After a while, his pumpkin started to get heavy and he was dragging it along.  He almost fell over once from the weight but quickly recovered.
As for costume, he was a puppy dog.  I took an old winter hat of my husbands, cut out black, felt pieces and hot glued them on.  It was adorable.  Then I just used eyeliner for whiskers and there you have it! A super easy, cute and cheap costume.

Anyhow, after having his hands painted with a spider and cobweb, munching on snacks, running around the dinner hall, and coloring, it was time to come home.  He had a good night and I will remember this first halloween forever.

Baby to Toddler: Changes

My little boy is now almost 18 months old. A year and a half already! The time has flown by and even though I try to be an intentional parent who is very present and involved it still has slipped by amazingly fast.  Something that I have struggled with in the past couple of months is the big changes that have taken place in “Transformation – Baby to Toddler”.  I’m loving that he is growing and doing all the things he should but I just feel a little behind, like it snuck up on me.  What really made the difference was walking.  When he became an accomplished walker, along with that came this big sense of independence and wanting to do so much more for himself.

Overall, I have adjusted and love to see how he is learning and growing every minute.  However, I read an article today that you can read here at Chronicles of a Babywise Mom and it was really enlightening for me.  I feel the pressure of having so much to teach to my baby and this article helped me to keep it somewhat in perspective.  I have built a really strong foundation with him and I feel like maybe lately, I’ve been trying to work on new things that have become problematic and haven’t been working on the things we already learned (signing, individual playtime, sleep habits).  This article states the importance of focusing on not losing ground during this “pre-toddler” stage rather than focusing on gaining new ground.  By doing this you actually gain ground.  I’m not going to explain in detail any more about the concept b/c she explains it great in the link above.  But it is so true! I want to go into toddlerhood in the same position I entered and not less.

So, a couple of the things I’m going to implement back into our routine are structured playtime and signing.  We have slacked off in both of these areas and I think both are really important.  With the signing, I have not been as consistent in having him sign for what he wants and he has developed a habit of whining or sometimes reaching and screeching for what he wants.  Not good!  We are going to have an interesting week implementing some of these things back in but it is so important for baby B to learn that he has to ask for things the right way and also to be able to have structured playtime (as opposed to roaming around getting into whatever he wants at times).

Well, that is just what is on my heart at the moment.  I will let you know how it goes!  Anyone want to share, please feel free.  🙂