I'm a few weeks behind Collin's birthday post. In fairness, he first got stomach flu thing, probably norovirus (on his birthday), Milo followed suite, and then Mike and I dropped. So yeah it's been a fun April so far. This in in addition to our February--also during Milo's birthday--stomach virus.
Oh and then strep throat came along and decided to join the fun. Thank God for antibiotics. Seriously I feel like I'm living in a germ factory. Like I'm starring in the movie, Contagion. Let's face it if there's some plague I'm probably screwed.
Onto the fact that I have a five year old! With a toddler in the helm, I really appreciate Collin's independence The fact he can get dressed by himself, play happily alone, even get his own snacks. We can also sort of reason with him. We're starting to give Collin more responsibilities and an allowance so he can learn about saving money. At times Milo drives him crazy and he plays the part of the torturer, but most of the time he's actually sweet and has fun with him.
He talks about his friends at school and draws them pictures. Cute moment of the week was when I picked him up and he proclaimed his love for his classmate, Cordelia.
"Why do you love her," I asked him.
"We dig for worms together and I like being with her," he said.
Now if that isn't a definition of love...
He's asking me so many questions about the world. Most of which I don't have an answer to.
Collin understands he has a hearing loss and is learning to advocate for himself. He'll tell you if you speak into his bad ear and knows how important hearing protection is. He'll continue to get services in kindergarten like an FM system in the classroom. It's obviously important for him to hear the teacher and his friends. Besides that, his speech and language ability is on target.
He is still obsessed with zombies, ghosts and the macabre. He loves to draw and spends hours in his art station in the playroom. He also likes building with Legos and does lots of make believe play with his army guys and pirate figures. He recognizes all his letters and can spell a few words (including zombie!)
Collin is so much like me in many ways. I wasn't drawing skeletons, it was more like ponies and people but I loved making up stories and lived in my imagination. He's also tenacious and when he gets stuck on something won't let it go. This can spell the secret to success and be as annoying as hell. Just ask Mike and my family. He's seriously dramatic. I can't wait until he "runs away." This was one of my favorite threats to my parents which they responded with "go ahead," eyeroll. He can get pretty frustrated which results in breaking down and screaming, but at least he'll use his words some of the time.
Unlike me though, the kid is a magnet for friends and is not shy in the least. When I take him to the school playground up the street he immediately jumps into chase or whatever game the kids are playing. Some of the kids aren't always thrilled with him and give him snarky looks or tell him to go away. But my tenacious boy just keeps on playing, or finds a new group and hardly seems bothered. Most of the time, the kids give in and let him play.
Sometimes I forget to slow down and talk to Collin and remember how nice it can be to spend time with him alone. Admittedly, I'll start thinking about all the stuff I want to get done like laundry, making dinner or just having time to veg out. But then I remember, he's only five once. Childhood is such a short time in our lives with an innocence and magic that'll disappear. When I start asking him questions, he's so happy to tell me about his day, about his friends, about what he's learning. Of course the conversation is pretty random at this point but nonetheless enjoyable. One day, he'll be a sullen teen and I may be stuck with one word answers and grunts.
We're thrilled Collin gets to continue his immersion K-8 education at Portland's public charter school, Le Monde starting in the fall. Mike and I are going to need to start taking some french classes or something because helping Collin with his school work will probably be a challenge considering he's about to surpass my French knowledge and I took college level French. It's so obvious that teaching kids a language at a young age makes much more sense than when you start in high school. Giant DUH America. I wish I had the opportunity that Collin has. He's also genuinely excited to learn French. He loves his vocab game on the ipad, points out things to me in French and sings. He was also thrilled to tell me about French bad words he picked up. I know that learning another language goes beyond the benefit of proficiency. It helps your brain develop in a different way, it opens up new ideas and lets you experience a different culture. Collin will be able to read in French without continually translating into English. He'll be able to think in French. Maybe even dream in it.
Collin ended up sleeping most of his birthday party away. We still had family over for a barbecue but you know Collin's sick when he had no interest in his Spider Man cake. He did however, muster the energy to at least open his presents. Score!
His big present from us was a big boy bike. He managed to try it out a little but a few days later was ready to take a spin around the neighborhood. Maybe this summer we'll be able to take off the training wheels.
On his actual birthday, he was still pretty miserable. The next day he went to school and I bought the cake for him and his classmates to eat. Unfortunately Collin was not quite better and while his friends enjoyed the yummy raspberry filling he ended up throwing up on the playground. Cake fail. Next time I'm bypassing the expensive fancy cake shop and going to Fred Meyer.
Here's an interview with my funny sweet boy:
Monday, February 18, 2013
On Milo's real birthday, we all received the gift of stomach flu so we rescheduled his party for a week later. I don't think he noticed.
We all enjoyed Mike's 20 plus hour smoked brisket, baked beans, fruit, and of course...
Cake. Delicious banana with a cream cheese frosting (and no I didn't make it).
The highlight was watching Milo dig into his own mini cake.
He didn't stop at the frosting and pretty much demolished the whole cake.
Then it was gift time. Collin
took over helped Milo open everything and play with his new toys.
After everyone left, it was sugar crash time. Milo promptly fell asleep for a long afternoon nap.
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
A year ago I was sleep deprived and in love. My tiny second born arrived and it has been a wild year.
Big brother adjusted to no longer being an only child and grew to be a pretty sweet with "his baby." Most recently he said, "I'll datect Milo."
We swapped houses for more quiet and more space. Milo started daycare and begin to grow into a real person.
Going from one to two is a huge change. Going anywhere from a restaurant to an airplane turns into a production. We found somewhat of a rhythm and as Milo gets older certain things are easier. (like not having to carry a whole nursery). Certain things are harder (like having a squirmy toddler who tries to jump out of high chairs and pull everything off the table).
Still, we were definitely more relaxed than with Collin. It also helped that Milo is a lot less dramatic. From the beginning, he has been mellow, goes with the flow, and smiles nearly all day. He is curious like his big brother and maybe more dangerous. He also has to catch up with him so rolling, crawling and walking have all been a lot sooner than he expected.
For a while, I was worried we were never going to sleep. Collin slept through the night at three months but we weren't so lucky this time. After we moved and Milo slept in his own crib, he finally started sleeping through the night (probably around 8 months). Now he goes 12 hours or more and is pretty much on one nap a day.
It's so fun to see the difference in personalities between my two boys. I have a feeling, Collin will always be more emotional and intense but at the same time, fun, full of energy and creative. Milo, like Collin is social and also busy, busy, but so far we haven't seen too many outbursts. And while he does get frustrated, generally he's just content. Both boys love to cuddle and show their love. I can't wait until Milo gives me those sloppy toddler kisses.
Happenings in the world of Milo:
- Giraffe blankey (thanks Aunty Joanne and Uncle Keene!)
- Pacifiers. Weirdly he didn't start liking these until a few months ago where they discovered at school it was the only thing to get him to nap. I'm okay with it as we don't "plug" him in often and supposedly it's easier to break that habit than thumb sucking.
- Like his brother, he loves most fruit especially blueberries and apples.
- He's still a good eater but starting to show a pickier side.
- Gets very excited about Hurley the cat and loves chasing his brother or mom and dad with his arms outstretched--Mike coined it the baby zombie run.
- He's now the big baby in his class at school and will join the "Koalas" (aka toddlers) in June. It'll be exciting to see him start to speak French as he spends his time in an immersion environment. So far, not too many words besides "Mama and Dada" and lots of babbling.
- He loves opening up drawers and trying to climb into the dishwasher. He would also swim in the toilet if we let him. He's starting to stack toys and likes clanging things together. Everything still goes in the mouth and Collin's tiny toys are routinely pulled out of his cheeks. One of his favorite games is to roll a ball. It's also great fun to hand a toy to someone back and forth.
- He also loves to get into anything his big brother has, such as blocks or coloring. This usually results in Collin screaming and pushing Milo out of the way. I can understand Collin's frustration so it's always interesting trying to keep Milo away while Collin is playing. Of course the most scream evoking will happen if Milo messes with interrupting Collin's TV watching.
- He has a total of four teeth and I think some more may be coming on the top
- So far, he has no interest in cow or soy milk. Nursing is still enjoyable, the biting seems rare now. Knowing he is most likely my last baby makes it all the harder to think about weaning him...
So without further adieu, presenting Milo through the months:
And the big numero uno
Sunday, February 3, 2013
Until Milo is an official toddler. The other week I bagged up Milo's clothes that were too small to donate to charity (save for a few cute pieces I couldn't part with). Then I pulled out Collin's 12-18 month clothes and found myself on the floor wanting to crawl into the fetal position and bawl. It's bittersweet knowing it's our last baby. I'm comfortable with that decision, but also saddened knowing that my tiny little newborn days are gone.
And so it goes...
Milo is nearly one year old! And he is everywhere!
And so it goes...
Milo is nearly one year old! And he is everywhere!
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Monday, January 14, 2013
Four-year-olds are funny, sweet, little people with absolutely no filter. I'm trying to remember to write down some of his gems before it becomes a distant memory and conversations consist of grunts and one word answers.
- "Do you know how to say butt in French? Le butt!"
- "Milo is made of wiggles"
- Mike had to go to Trenton, NJ for five days for work (a real exciting town). Collin to me: "Someday when I'm older you'll be alone with Milo and I'll go to New Jersey with dad. I love him."
- Upon walking into a Mexican restaurant with a strong seafood aroma. Collin very loudly, "Ew it smells so stinky. It smells like butts. Gross." Mike and I quickly tried to quiet him, luckily he was happy with his quesadilla and the waiter didn't seem like he spit in his food.
- Collin: "I don't like you mom. Fuck!"
Me: "Collin do not say that."
Collin: "I said puck. Puck."
- "Can I marry you mama?"
- "Can we do love?" (aka cuddles)
- Collin:"He's on the list."
Me: "What list?"
Collin: "My birthday party. If you're mean to me you're off the list. You're on the list too mom."
And so it begins...
- On talking about our best and worst parts of the day:
"My best part was playing Candy Land with mom and dad and dad won and I didn't get upset. My worse part was not watching 100 tv's."
"The best part of my day was cuddling with you, the worst part is dad smells like throw-up." (After which Mike took a shower)