Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Samson Complex

Dear Ian,

Today you had your first haircut. And while we weren't exactly blase' about it, we figured, "Hey, Ian likes people and new experiences. This should be fine!" I even bought safety lollypops to help keep you still and distracted. No worries! We went this morning to Mr. Fred at the Old Time Barber Shop, and you went in smiling like always. After all, it IS Mr. Fred, and he's basically an old family friend. He's cut Daddy's hair for about 30 years, and he does Grandpa Brooks' haircuts AND Uncle Kurt and Uncle Ryan's haircuts, too! This was going be a-okay.

Boy did you show us.

Thankfully we were a little busy holding you and trying to keep you still, so we didn't get photos of you actually crying like your little heart was breaking, but we did get a couple of photos. (this was before you really got worked up.) You have never cried like that. Not even when you got teeth or shots at the doctor's.

Not only that, but I think I have traumatized lollypops for you, too. After it was all said and done, I offered you another one (the first one got all hairy, so ewww), and you wanted nothing to do with it!

Mr. Fred was so wonderful. I have never seen him cut hair so fast, and he was really understanding and patient and talked to you the whole time. He even gave you a certificate commemorating the whole experience. It was really sweet.

So, we made it. It wasn't the most pleasant experience, and definitely not the most quiet, but we did it. You look so different; you're such a big boy now. All mommy has left of that little baby hair is a curl, safely tucked inside a little plastic ziploc that extra buttons come in to put in your baby book. Sniff.

But enough of that. If you're like your parents, and you most certainly are, you will need another haircut in about two weeks. I'm bracing myself now...

I love you,

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

"Do not go gentle into that dark night..." OR Nancy Sinatra Would Be Proud

Dear Ian,
Today is a momentous day. This morning you took your first steps! Thankfully our blog posts have time stamps, so you will be able to look and see that today is September 14, and that you are five days away from your 11th month-day. It was around 8:45am, too. :) But just in case, the "First Steps" sticker is already on your calendar.
Anyway, you were standing holding on to my legs, and Daddy got down about three feet away from you and held his arms out, and off you toddled to him. It was a grand total of about two steps and a lunge, but it counts!
The quote from Dylan Thomas' poem at the title of this post is descriptive of your walking progress. You are definitely not "going gently" into this toddler-hood thing. This morning you really seemed to want to walk. The past couple of weeks, you had been doing more of the one-handed cruising, and you had more interest in your push walker, but that is small potatoes compared to today. You were a dare-devil! First it was a let-go-of-the-chair-and-lunge-for-the-ottoman. Then you expanded your reach from letting go of the chair to reaching for something about two feet away. Good grief. No, gently is so not the word for it. More like careening. Sheesh. You practiced and attempted to take steps most of the morning, and between 7:30 and 7:45am, you had already hit your head about four times. Mommy is going to call Miss Laurie today to dye my hair back to brown to cover the gray you have given me just this morning.
The crazy part was, you did NOT want help. I'm not that bad of a mother that I would just let you bounce off furniture unassisted. I tried to help, but every time I touched you, you would shriek, plop down on the floor and bat my hands away. You are SO my child.
But then, about an hour after your last run-in with furniture, you managed to propel yourself forward into the arms of your Daddy. It was amazing! We were so proud!
So, Sweet Boy, "Do not go gently into that dark night..." that is growing up. Despite the fact that it's a long and bumpy road and therefore hard work, the rewards (walking, running, running away from Mom, independence) are so worth the risk and effort.
And to cover the other part of the title, and to paraphrase the late, great Nancy Sinatra and her hit, "Boots"
"you were made for walking, and that's just what you'll do!"

Love always,

Friday, September 3, 2010

Mad Skillz (and yes, Skillz with a Z)

Dear Ian,

I had a moment the other day as you and I were driving home in the car from somewhere. I looked back at the car seat at this TODDLER that was clapping along as I sang "If you're happy and you know it," and I couldn't remember the baby that you used to be. Carrying you in my belly seemed like forever ago, and I had to struggle to remember what it felt like to have you do a slow somersault under my heart. The memory of you as tiny as a loaf of bread seemed so distant. True, you weren't exactly the most interactive when you were a newborn, but I can't remember a lot of the little things that, when they happened or I noticed them, that I wanted to keep in my mind and heart forever. So, here you are, almost one year old, and I absolutely LOVE the stage of life in which we are now. The world is new and exciting, and watching you grow and explore thrills me. I want to remember everything about you and everything you do and "say" at this moment, so here's this post of things about you and the things that you can currently do so that way we can always have them.

* As of now, you STILL only have four teeth, but I can see numbers five and six, so I know it wont be long before they make an appearance.
* You need a haircut! Your hair curls at the back just behind your right ear. When you are in one of your calmer moods, I love to snuggle you close and let it curl around my finger.
* You give hugs and kisses, although you have to be in the mood to dole them out.
* You can CLIMB!! The other day you climbed up five stairs on our staircase (with supervision of course!), and you can almost get up on the sofa.
* You dance whenever you hear music. :) It's more like a bob, you bounce up and down, but it's funny to watch. You hold on to whatever is nearest and dance.
* You can also clap your hands, but if you're standing up, you have to sit first.
* Linguistically, you are expanding your vocabulary. Some words you can say: Daddy and Mamma of course, but you also say "Bless" when someone sneezes, "This" and "That" at objects you want or need a name for and "Baba" for both food and bye-bye. Occasionally you will even sign the word "eat" back to me when it's time for a meal.
* You love all things transportation, and when you see a tractor or car or truck, you say "brmm, brmm." Really cute :)
* Animals make your day. Just this morning, you stood at the window and watched a cat walk around our neighbor's yard for 10 minutes!
* You can roll a ball, push a walker, unload the dryer, and push your trucks and cars on the hardwood.
* Your independence is growing, too. You much prefer to feed yourself than have someone feed you.
* Food preferences are also starting to emerge. You prefer purple grapes to green ones, you like green beans more than Lima beans (and just about anything else, too.), and baby food is pretty much out. You like your food to have texture and seasoning. Thankfully you like our family spaghetti sauce, and so far, you like Mommy's cooking.
* You can stack one thing on top of another, and you can put toys or blocks in boxes.

For now, those are the things that stick out in my mind the most about you at the present moment. Every day you do something new or different. It simply amazes me how fast you learn and change. I wish I could remember it all, and I'm sure I would get harassed if I carried a notebook with me all of the time so I could write things down, but it would be worth it. Everyone says that kids are like little sponges, absorbing anything and everything around them, and this is exactly right. I can only hope that I can keep up and keep giving you things to absorb.

Love always,