Thursday, December 17, 2015

Holiday // Our 2015 Christmas Card

Every year when the holiday season rolls around, one of my most favorite traditions is sending out Christmas cards. It's something I really look forward to and I think there is something so nice about sending some snail mail this time of year. 

Last year, I ordered and sent out our card before Henry made his debut so I was really excited for our first official card as a family of three. (Well four, counting Lola of course!) For our photo, we ended up using one of the pictures we had taken by my friend Ashley earlier this year. (I was a little worried that it wasn't a recent enough photo and part of me wanted to take a more Christmas-y one. But since Henry doesn't like to sit still for more than two seconds these days, I figured we could just use one of the photos we that we had!) As for the cards, of course we went with Minted once again!


I've ordered our holiday cards from Minted for a number of years now (along with Henry's birth announcements and shower invitations) and I've always been super happy with the result. This year was no exception! It's always tough to choose because there are so many cute designs, but we decided to go with something simple and traditional this year. But what's exciting is that Minted now offers letterpress cards

I absolutely LOVE the look of letterpress and so as soon as I saw it was an option, I knew that's what I wanted to do for our card. (This is the design we chose) The letterpress looks really nice in person, photos really don't do it justice! And then as always, Minted's paper quality is second to none. 

(The only thing about the letterpress cards is that you can't put anything on the back. But that actually made ordering so much easier because I didn't have to stress over what to write...ha!)

Once again, I had both my return addresses and my recipient addresses printed on the envelopes which made sending them out such a breeze - just stick on a stamp and send! (And I'm loving the Charlie Brown stamps this year!) I love that Minted offers lots of cute designs for their envelopes that coordinate with their cards because it makes them feel that much more special.

I know Christmas is in a little over a week, but if you want to order cards (or gifts!) there is still time! If you place your card order today, you can receive them by Christmas Eve, and there's still gifts that will be delivered before Christmas as well. Plus, Minted actually has tons of cute New Year's cards if you want to send a greeting but want a little more time :)

I wish I could send you all a card for continuing to follow along with me through this first year of parenthood. I know my posting has been somewhat sporadic, so I appreciate those of you who have kept reading :) I hope you have a blessed holiday season!

Special thanks to Minted for collaborating with me on this post, but as always, all thoughts/opinions expressed are 100% my own :) 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Henry // Twelve Months


It's me.

(I really couldn't resist)

It's been over a month without a blog post, which I think may have been one of my longest breaks ever. It was unintentional initially, I was just busy with life/baby/holidays/etc. But as time went on, I felt like it might be good to take some time away from this space to see if I really felt like coming back. It's no secret that I haven't had as much time to blog ever since Henry came along, and I didn't want to just keep going through the motions if my heart's really not in it. But the good news is I did actually miss blogging over the past month! Taking some time away made me realize that it's not something I'm ready to give up just yet. I do think that I need to adjust my expectations in terms of what's realistic for me in terms of frequency but I'm excited about some potential ideas for the upcoming year. But I'll probably talk a little more about that in a future post, so stay tuned! Now on to the point of this post...Henry's TWELVE month update!

Although I can hardly believe it, my baby turned a year old a week ago. His first trip around the sun feels like such a major milestone, both for him as well as for Cameron and I as parents. We celebrated with a 'winter ONE-derland' birthday party last weekend and I can't wait to share the photos from that soon. I know I'm (very) biased, but Henry is seriously the best. He's such a sweet, funny, loving little guy and I'm so in love with this stage he's at now. Even though these updates have felt a little tedious sometimes, I'm glad I did them because it's fun to be able to look back and see how far we've come. 

So without further adieu, here's what Henry is up to at twelve months old...

 We had his one year well check last week and it went really well! We actually switched to a new pediatrician that's a little closer to our house and I'm super happy with her already. Henry is growing right on track; he weighed 22lbs 5oz and measured 30.75 inches, putting him right around the 70th percentile for weight and above the 80th percentile for height. (He was also over 90th percentile for head circumference, taking after his parents)  He still only has 4 teeth and there aren't really any signs that he's got new ones coming any time soon. I was hoping to get him a hair cut before his birthday because his hair is getting pretty long and hangs in his eyes sometimes, but I still haven't had a chance, plus I didn't want them to totally hack it before his first birthday party. I'll probably get around to it sometime in the new year :) His hair is still blonde, his eyes are grayish brown, and he still has his dimples he had when he was born. He's also officially walking! 

At our one year appointment, our pediatrician told us that in this first year, kids get an average of 10-12 colds during the winter months. That's why it's hard for me to remember exactly every little cold Henry gets these days because it seems like he (and all of his little playmates) sort of have perpetual runny noses and lingering coughs right now. Thankfully though, he didn't have any real major colds over this past month, which was good because I had my fingers crossed that he wouldn't be under the weather for his first birthday party. The only other issue is over the past month, he's had some red spots on his thigh that seemed like they could be dry skin or eczema, which he's never had before. He had some really dry patches on his legs too, but the red spots were a little concerning. However, they didn't seem to be spreading nor did they seem like they were bothering him, so I just tried to keep his legs moisturized and figured I'd ask about it at his one year appointment. Well of course at his appointment they had gone away and his legs were perfectly smooth and fine...ha! Which is great, except now less than a week after his appointment they've returned, of course. It's pretty mild though and the pediatrician told me that what I described is probably just dry skin/very mild eczema so I'll just keep an eye on it I guess. But overall, Henry has been a very healthy boy over his first year of life and for that I'm so very thankful :)

(Additional note: I was trying to write this update just to reflect the past month up until Henry turned one. But right after his birthday last week, he came down with a little cold. Saturday, he had a low grade fever, and yesterday morning he woke up with red spots on his face, hands, legs, and feet. I took him to the pediatrician yesterday afternoon and it turns out he has hand foot and mouth disease. Blergh. His fever is gone and beyond the spots, he seems to be feeling just fine thankfully. But since it's so contagious, we'll probably be laying low from now until Christmas which is kind of a bummer. But he's been pretty healthy his first year of life so I really can't complain too much!)

As soon as he figured out how to walk, he's been obsessed with it ever since and loves walking everywhere now. He also loves picking stuff up and carrying it around. He's obsessed with the remote control and tries to get it any chance he can. He loves splashing in Lola's water dish any chance he gets, and is constantly going into the kitchen to try to do it.  He really likes playing with his friends and it's so much fun to see them interact more and more now. He also "plays" with Lola more these days, meaning he'll walk around and she'll follow him and he laughs. He loves seeing how loud he can make his voice, especially if we're in a loud space where it can echo. He loves any sort of cabinet, door, or drawer that he can try and open and he's constantly exploring and investigating. He likes FaceTiming and it's fun that he can interact so much more now and gets excited about it. We've taken him to the kids area at the science museum a few times over the past month and he seems to love that because there are lots of fun, age appropriate things to play with. He also seems like he likes the rain, which is good because we've been getting a LOT of it lately. And surprisingly, he's been pretty good with the Christmas tree and has left it alone for the most part. But there are a couple specific ornaments he likes trying to take off all the time :) He is also completely enamored by anything with wheels! If we're somewhere with other moms/babies, he always goes straight for one of the strollers because he just wants to examine the wheels and try to push it back and forth. We were actually at the science museum on his birthday and there was an older lady in a wheelchair in the kids area. Henry immediately speed crawled over to her and grabbed on to the wheel of her wheelchair and tried rocking it back and forth. (Insert monkey covering eyes emoji here) Thankfully, the lady thought it was pretty funny but yeah, he loves anything with wheels!
I'm having a hard time thinking of any new dislikes for this month. There were a few times that he was nursing where he bit me, not super hard but enough for me to involuntarily go "OW" really loudly and that made him burst into tears. Thankfully though, that hasn't become a habit :) Overall, he's just a happy guy and doesn't have many dislikes. Still not a fan of going in his car seat, having his diaper changed, or having his nose wiped, but other than that, he usually fine with most things!

He's growing out of his 12 month clothes and moving up to size 18 months, but still fitting ok in brands with 12-18 month sizes. (And he's up to size 80 in Hanna Andersson) He's still in a size 4 shoe I think, but now that he's officially walking, we need to go have his foot measured again. He's also still in size 4 diapers and we're still using Honest Co. 
Still nursing and I'm so happy we made it to my goal of a year! That feels like a huge milestone and there's a part of me that can't believe we made it this long. Honestly, after those first few difficult weeks, nursing has been super easy and I'm so that we were able to make to stick with it because it's been a great experience. I was trying to nurse him at least 4 times a day, but as we got closer to his birthday, there were a few times that it seemed he only wanted to nurse 3 times a day. So now that's what we're doing moving forward and we'll eventually continue to taper down as time goes on. His eating seems like it can be a little hit or miss because some days he'll eat a lot and then others he just wants to feed everything to Lola or not eat, but I guess that's pretty normal. He seems to love sweet potato pancakes, bananas, smoothies, any sort of meat, and things I make for dinner like shepherds pie, spaghetti squash with meat sauce, and soup/chili. (Still not a big fan of green veggies but we're working on it) We're also starting to introduce some cows milk and so far he seems to like it!

This past month, he definitely started to majorly transition to one nap. As much as I would love for him to take two naps a day, having him take one longer nap in the middle of the day seems to be much easier to plan around schedule wise vs. two naps that were kind of moving targets in terms of time he'd go down/duration. Henry usually goes to bed sometime between 8:30-9 and he was sleeping straight through the night until at least 8am, so I'm really thankful for that! We don't have a super complex bedtime routine, basically he gets dinner, then a bath (every other day in the winter usually though so that way his skin doesn't get too dry), and then I take him up to his room to read him a story (and even if we read other books, we always read Goodnight Moon - it's kind of an odd book as this article points out, but something about the rhyming and repetition is strangely soothing!) and then nurse him. He used to fall asleep at the end of nursing and I'd just put him in his crib, but now he's usually always awake when he's done nursing, so I've been reading to him after we finish nursing, and then putting him in his crib awake. I'm hoping this will help make the transition easier once we eventually stop nursing before bed! He's definitely a great little sleeper and will usually only fuss a little when I put him in his crib before immediately conking out. When he goes down for his nap usually depends on when he wakes up in the morning/what we have planned for the day, but he usually goes down somewhere between 12:30-2 and then he'll sleep for anywhere from 1.5-2.5 hours.  He did have a little bit of trouble sleeping when we were traveling to New York over Thanksgiving; because Cam and I were in the same room as him, he'd cry to get out of the pack and play when we'd put him down at night. But once I finally got him to fall asleep, he slept through the night until morning without a problem. He also seemed to take two good naps a day in his stroller while we were there walking around, so that was great!
Favorite Things:
He got quite a few new toys for his first birthday so he's been having fun playing with everything so far. This toy lawn mower is already a favorite though! He loves this tambourine and this gear toy that he got for presents from my family while we were in NYC. He enjoys books a lot and I love adding new ones to his collection (this one and this one were some recent favorite additions). He really likes to drink out of straw cups the best, and so far we've had the best luck with the Munchkin ones.

He is loving climbing these days and I could not get him to sit down in that chair for the life of me so it's probably good we're stopping with these monthly photos :)
-Started letting go of things and standing without support on 11/19
-He took a step or two prior but he really walked for the first time on Saturday 11/28
-Once he started walking, he hasn't looked back and very quickly progressed to being able to walk around the whole house/for long distances without falling
-He took his first trip to NYC and did great! He rode on the subway, went to the Children's Museum, and played with his aunt and uncle's cat :)
-He had his first Thanksgiving (as well as a friendsgiving with some of our Hike It Baby friends)
-We completed our second HIB 30 Challenge and managed to get outside and walk over 30 miles in November!
-Henry is really vocal and has a couple of words under his belt. He says mama and dada all the time and he seems to understand their associations which is so cute :) He also says go, tries to say Lola (he says a two syllable word that sounds like he's trying to say it), and sometimes says no. He's been saying these for awhile (I just forgot to mention it in his last update!) and he's just recently started saying "uh oh" when he drops something now. I am excited to see all the words he's going to learn in the coming year!
-Henry's started pointing a lot this month which is so cute :)
-He had his first experience at the Christmas tree farm, and even though this is technically his second Christmas, it feels like it's really his first one since we were still in a newborn fog during the holidays last year.
-He's gone to some first birthday parties of a few of his little friends that also have December birthdays! I feel really lucky to have made friends with a handful of moms that have babies that are really similar in age to Henry (as in a few days apart) and it's been so cool to watch them all grow over the past year!
-He had his first birthday party, complete with his own smash cake :) More pics to come soon!

You can see all of his monthly updates here
Henry has changed so much over the past year and I feel like Cameron and I just get more obsessed with him every day! I wanted to write some long emotional tribute about just how much we love him, but I can't put it in to words. (Plus, I'm pretty tired...ha!) But we couldn't be more thankful for his joyful presence in our life and can't wait to see what this next year brings!


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