Thursday, March 5, 2020

Bennett Michael {18 Months}

Dear Bennett,

Last week, you turned 18 months old! You have had quite a busy 6 months since we last did an update, so let's take a look at what you've been up to! 

{PS. You got a haircut the day after I took these pictures! Sorry you look so shaggy here, lol.}

We go to the doctor tomorrow for your 18 month old well visit, so I'll try to update your stats then. You have been growing like a weed and I am constantly discovering clothes in your closet that you seem to have outgrown overnight. You wear mostly 18 month size clothes, but can also pretty comfortably fill out 24m stuff, too. Sometimes I try to squeeze you into 12m stuff if it runs big, but for the most part, you're out of that size almost completely! You are still in size 3 diapers, but as soon as we finish this box, I think I'm going to move you up to 4s. You wear size 3/4 shoe. You have tiny feet! :) 

Your biggest milestone since we last updated on here is that you are FINALLY walking!!!!!! Praise the Good Lord because I wasn't sure if it was ever going to happen! You got pretty comfortable with standing independently soon after you turned 1 (like last October/November), but you would not take any steps to save your life. Daddy and I tried to have a little "bootcamp" where we would try to get you to walk in between us (standing a few feet apart), but as soon as one of us would let you, you'd just plop down so gracefully. This continued for a few months...we'd get so excited because you'd look like you were about to take a step, and then nope! You'd just plop yourself down. Ugh! But then, about 6 weeks ago, everything just clicked and you decided to just...walk! And I don't mean a few steps; you were cruising all over your room on the first day of this walking thing. You now RUN after your big brother and sister constantly! I am just so glad we never paid money for physical therapy or rushed you into walking! You do things on your own time, that is for sure! 

You are quite a little talker/babbler! I just love your sweet voice. Some of your favorite words are "Dada, Mama, wahhh (water), cheese (when you see my phone, to take a picture of you!), teeth, uh-oh, Elmo, ball, shoes"...and your absolute favorite thing to say is ELLA!!! You say her name all of the time, even when she's at school! You just love Big Sister so, so much. 

Your favorite thing right now is probably books! You are so studious! You love to sneak into Ella's and Lucas's rooms and read all of their books. Your current favorites are Tow Truck Joe (you try to steal this out of Lucas's room daily), any Peppa Pig book and the Elmo Balls book! Sometimes you get frustrated when we read to you and you'd rather just look at the books yourself! But I'm so thankful that you have a love for reading, even if it's on your own terms! 

Another thing that you really enjoy is MUSIC! You love to sing, clap and make music with any sort of "instrument" you can find! We go to a story-time/music class at our church every week and you love to shake the maracas and beat on the drums there! Your favorite song is "Into the Unknown" from Frozen II and anytime you hear it, you will start singing "in-ee uh-ownnn!" Your face lights up when you hear it. You also point to Alexa and ask her to play it ALL. OF. THE. TIME. 

You've recently become obsessed with dogs and will "woof" at anything and everything with 4 legs (including the reindeer Sven in Frozen II). You are never scared of the doggies we see walking in our neighborhood; you are always willing and ready to pet them! Along with that, you just wouldn't be part of our family if you didn't LOVE the freakin' Paw Patrol. Ella and Lucas both went through this phase (actually, Lucas is still in it) where they just couldn't get enough of those pups and Ryder! Haha. So, thanks for being SUPER into that ridiculous show so I don't have to get rid of the 385739 Paw Patrol toys we own just yet. 

In addition to Paw Patrol, you also love Peppa Pig, Mickey Mouse, Curious George and Elmo! Lucas's love for trucks has also rubbed off on you and you two boys are always playing with the 8394 monster trucks and other vehicles we have! You LOVE Blippi (help me) and can sing his Police Car Song! You also love to make siren noises when you see any sort of rescue vehicle! Your favorite toy is the rollercoaster you got for Christmas! You love to not only ride down it like you're supposed to, but also push that little car all over the house! We need to get you more ride-on toys because you are pretty obsessed with them! 

Everyone always comments on how happy you are, and I very often get asked, "Does he ever cry?!" Well, yes, Bennett. Yes, you do cry. Top times are: if you're hungry, if you're thirsty, when I wipe your nose (you see the Nose Frida and immediately start squirming hysterically), and being constrained (you loathe the stroller). Now that you're walking, you are on the go ALWAYS. You love to sneak away and think it's so funny when we find you! 

You are still a pretty awesome sleeper! You take one big afternoon nap each day and will sometimes sleep for 3+ hours! You go to bed at night between 7 and 7:30 PM and usually sleep until 7:30 AM! Sometimes you wake up at like 5, but can usually get yourself back to sleep for another hour or two. As far as eating, well, I think you might be my pickiest eater at this age! You stopped breastfeeding for good a few months ago and it took you a while to get the hang of drinking milk from a sippy cup. You really like to eat granola bars, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, chicken nuggets, mac and cheese, waffles, yogurt, applesauce pouches and fruit snacks...but other than that, it can be hard to get you to eat stuff! Your favorite pastime is throwing food on the floor. It is fun. Ha! Your siblings are also ridiculously picky (and let's not lie, Mommy is picky, too) so I guess it just runs in the family. My cross to bear if you will. 

Sweet Baby Bennett, you will forever be our "baby," but goodness gracious you've had a BIG past 6 months! You are becoming such a big kid and it makes me sad yet happy at the same time! You are so much fun; clapping, waving and blowing kisses to everyone! You get so many compliments on your adorableness and your sunny disposition! :) We couldn't love you more if we tried!

Monday, February 3, 2020

Ella Grace {Six Years}

Dear Ella,

Today you are SIX! 6 whole years ago, you made me a mom. It has flown by, but I also feel like we've known each other for much longer than 6 years! ;) The fact that your birthday is on a Monday this year (you were born on a Monday) makes today even more special for some reason. You got so tried of me telling you yesterday "Ok, at this time 6 years ago, Daddy and I..."! You now have to hold up TWO hands to show your age, and you are becoming such a little lady!

We go to the doctor in 2 weeks for your 6 year old check up. (PS, Scheduling around school is hard!) If I had to guess, I'd say you're about 44 pounds and 46 inches tall. You wear size 6 clothes, but can still fit in some size 5 (and even some size 4) dresses and leggings. Your favorite thing is to wear a smaller sized dress "as a tunic," and just wear it with leggings. Gotta love girls' clothes!  You are size 11/12 shoes. You don't really like clip-in bows anymore (TEAR!) but you do love your headbands!

You continue to be a rockstar sleeper, as you always have been! You go to sleep around 7:30 PM and on the weekends have no problem sleeping till 7:30 AM. On school days, I wake you up at 6:30 AM and half the time you are already awake, ready to go! I still make you have quiet time on weekends, where you read or play quietly in your room while the boys are napping. On some very rare days, you will still fall asleep during this time! It's pretty great.

The biggest change this year has been starting kindergarten and you are flourishing. You absolutely LOVE school! You actually cry/get very sad on Friday nights when you don't have school the next day. You were very upset at the start of Christmas break because you already missed your teacher so much!! Your best friend Alevia is in the same class as you, and you have made many other new friends. You love riding the bus and have met lots of neighborhood kids doing that! You love all of the special area classes, but it cracked me up that you got a PE Award last quarter! PE?! MY child?! LOL! Clearly, you take after your dad! ;) You are reading on a level G which is equivalent to a first grade reading level! We are so proud of the wonderful reader you are becoming! You love to read and your favorite books are Piggie and ElephantFancy Nancy, and Pinkalicious books.

Even more than loving to read, you LOVE LOVE LOVE to write! You are constantly making books. When I say constantly, I am talking every free second of the day when you're home, you're probably up in the bonus room making another book! I love that you are such an author and your invented spelling gets me every time. The illustrations are pretty amazing too. You make books for all of us...and we're not just talking about basic 4 page books. Oh no, you make pop-up books, lift-the-flap books, cut out books and your latest obsession: chapter books! I am trying to figure out a good way to organize all of these books because they are all so precious and I want to save them! You have always wanted to be the tooth fairy when you grow up, but now you tell me that you want to be an author, too!

Your brothers both look up to you so much and absolutely adore you. Lucas sometimes gets on your nerves (and also sits on you...) but he gets sad when you are at school! When you two aren't fighting over the same toy, you actually play pretty nicely together and are SO hilarious! Bennett lights up with a smile every time you walk in the room and of course knew how to say "Ella" months ago! Both boys love your books that you make for them, and also when you read to them.

You are still doing dance class every Monday and our church program on Wednesdays! You've also started taking Chinese lessons online and you LOVE Teacher Elaine! At this point you know more Chinese than I do, which isn't saying too much but I'm still pretty impressed! It is a HARD language to learn! But the thing I will continue to be the most proud of is that you are SO kind to everyone. That was the first thing I asked your teacher at Parent/Teacher Conferences, if you were kind. And she said "oh my goodness, yes!" There are two ESL girls in your class that you have taken under your wing and you are always concerned if someone is sick or hurt. You love to pray for all of your friends. We recently "adopted" a sponsored child from Tanzania...she has the same birthday as you! And if we don't mention her in our nightly prayers, oh man do you let me hear it!

Sweetest girl, you continue to shine and make us proud every single day! I can't wait to see what this next year brings...6 is such an amazing age and I know you're going to have the best year! We love you so much!