Monday, January 23, 2017

Liam is 11 Months Old!

I feel like I blinked and Liam aged another month! 11 months!! Oh my gosh...he's nearly a year old!! I knew these months would go by so quickly! It seems like once 6 months hit, babies just start gaining more and more independence - they learn to sit, self-feed, scoot, crawl, entertain themselves, get into mischief...

It all happens so fast.

Too fast!!!

I was just looking at my kids today - staring hard at them, actually - trying to captures these fleeting moments in my mind. It's like they are slipping through my fingers! I hear the words so many people tell me:

"They won't stay little for long! It goes by so fast!"

...and I do hear them, it's just...it's just so hard to not want the hard phases to end and to take for granted their sweet tiny bodies and cuddly, needy personalities. It's a double-edged sword - I'd love to have a little less demand from them, but then when I get some space, I realize they don't need me as much as they did yesterday and that makes me saaaaaad because they are growing up before my eyes!! WHYYYYYY

Liam has really been displaying some "toddler behaviors" lately!! He has learned that it's "naughty" to go play in the bathroom! He starts crawling really fast towards it, and I get up and run after him and he giggles and crawls faster and tries to hide behind the toilet before I can catch him! It's his new favorite game!

He thows his lovies out of his crib.

He throws food he doesn't like or when he's full!

He criiiiiiiies when he's trying to reach the remote and I take it away!

He gets really mad when sister is having a snack and he doesn't have one.

Liam loves bathtime! He giggles and kicks all the way upstairs and practically jumps out of my arms trying to get into the tub while I undress him! Both the kids go nuts for bathtime! It's kind of a monsoon these days - they get pretty wild! Ava was such a "well-behaved" baby in the tub - not Liam! He crawls all over and pulls to stand and falls into the water, but he is laughing the whole time! I've had to drastically lower the water level in the tub because he is so crazy! Ava and Liam are pretty much constantly moving and laughing in the tub! It's exhausting...but I love it.

Liam has 5 teeth! He's been busy cutting teeth this month! The 6th one will erupt soon!

I haven't heard any words out of Liam's mouth, but I swear the other day he said "Ava"! Haha probably just my imagination, though! The rest of the time he is just babbling away! I'm hoping his first word will be "mama"! He says "dada" all the time but he doesn't associate it with "daddy" so that doesn't actually count! I think he's trying to say "all done", but I can't be sure that's what he's saying. I need a little more time to hear it - "ahhh nah" is what it sounds like - in context before I can determine if it's intentional or not!

There's been a BIG change in our house lately...momma gets uninterrupted sleep now!! Liam was eating around the clock, every 4 hours or less, so I decided to take a leap and see if I could night wean him, or at least drop one night feeding. I'm so exhausted from broken sleep every night! My technique to get him back to sleep at night has always been to just feed him, no matter how long it had been since he last ate. Mainly because he wakes up crying so loud I just want him to be quiet so he doesn't wake Ava! If I try and go in to him and just hold him or rock him, he would just cry louder! So I wasn't sure how night weaning would go. Once when Ava was a baby, she was waking 4x per night and I was always just feeding her to get her back to sleep. Then it created a cycle where she was getting too many calories at night, so she had to keep waking up to get what she needed for the day. Her nursing sessions were too short in the daytime, and too long at night! So I night weaned her to "reset" her eating patterns, and she slept beautifully after that! So I felt like Liam needed the same adjustment! But he is a very different baby, so I was doubtful I'd have any luck. I braced myself for a mad baby in the middle of the night, and potentially waking up Ava with his cries. I assumed no one would get sleep that week!

The first night, he woke at midnight, and I just let him fuss to see what he would do. He fell back asleep!?! That was surprising. He woke again at 1, and did the same. Then he woke at 4, and was crying. I went to him and changed his poopy diaper, and rocked him. He was searching and wanting to nurse! But I needed to at least try to lay him down to go to sleep before giving in. I was already impressed he made it to 4! I laid him down. He was mad. But, within 10 minutes, he was asleep! He woke at 6 and I immediately went to him to feed him. I was so surprised he did it! And that began the "reset" - the next night he woke once around 4 and whined a bit and went back to sleep. And now he doesn't wake up at all!?!!!!! I can only hope this continues! I feel like a new person, being able to get more than 3 consecutive hours of sleep at a time!!

Liam LOVES food. Well, there are some things he doesn't like, but he eats a lot!! 2 waffles, a banana, and yogurt is a typical breakfast for him lately! Usually by the time I get both kids their breakfast and I get MY breakfast made, one or both of them is all done and ready to be washed up to go play!

Ava has discovered the word "NO" this week - but I'm proud of her for the way she uses it! Liam has started to get pretty grabby with her, and I've been trying to help her either relocate herself (like when she is having a snack I tell her to come sit on the couch so Liam won't bother her) or to tell him "no, I'm still playing with that". And she's starting to verbalize it! She's pretty passive in social situations, so I'm trying to build her confidence and give her words to use when someone is taking something from her. So it sounds a little something like this: "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO BUDDY THATS MIIIIIIIIIIINE! NOOOOOOOOOOOOO BIA!" hahaha!! But she's not really yelling at him like she's mad...she's just talking SO loud! It makes me laugh so I usually have to take a second and hide my smile and then go release Liam's grip and tell her she's doing a good job using her words!

But, for the most part, Liam and Ava play really well together. They seek each other out, and they are SO happy to be reuinited when we pick Ava up from school! They are playing together most of the time, but occasionally they branch off and go play by themselves. My favorite thing in the world is to hear their giggles while they play together!

Their first "sibling fight" has happened...they fight over Ava's sippy cup! Ava likes to offer it to Liam, and he'll take some drinks. But then Ava wants it back, and Liam is not pleased. Then it becomes a game to Ava, but Liam is definitely not finding the humor in it! And then Ava is upset that Liam is all over her, trying to get it, so I have to intervene! Liam likes his own water cup...but he's discovered that Ava's cup often times has juice in it, and he wants it so bad!!

Liam has yet to stand independently, so I think walking will be a few more months away still. He likes to sit on his knees and is a fast crawler! I hold his hands to help him walk or help him with the walker, but after a few steps he sinks to his knees and crawls away! It is so interesting to compare the two kids - Ava was standing independently at 8 months, wasn't crawling until 9 months, and then was walking at 10 months!! Liam crawled at 8 months, but has yet to stand independently or walk!

Ava's language is getting better and better! We can almost have full conversations! She can tell me more things she wants and is feeling. She's also been looking for more ways to be naughty...like getting into things on the counter and helping herself to food when she's noticed I've left the pantry unlocked! It is sooooo nice that I can tell her to do a task, and she understands and will do it (most of the time)! She's becoming more independent!!

Next month, I'm going to have a 2 year-old and a 1 year-old. Liam will be a big boy!!!

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