Tag Archives: 14 months

Neola Bethany: 13-14 Months

24 Jul

Neola is 14 months old as of July 12. These past couple of months with Neola have been so fun! She’s not walking yet, but getting oh so close!

In Neola’s 11-12 month post, I didn’t mention anything about what we did for her first birthday. Her actual birthday on May 12 was pretty lowkey — we had doughnuts for breakfast (that we had just bought that morning from Cub), played in the rain, had McDonald’s for lunch, and went to soccer practice for the older kids at night. #fourthchild #firstbirthday

But we celebrated all four kids’ birthdays with our families on May 21. We did a (very, very loose) superhero theme. It ended up being a FREEZING day. We had the older kids’ soccer games that morning, and I ended up running home between games with Neola to get winter gear for everyone because we were all turning into icicles. For the party, we ate food and played with water balloons (for the kids, the fun of water balloons outweighed how cold it was).

Size

A week after her first birthday, we took Neola in to the doctor because she had had a ton of mucus, a bad cough, and was super fussy/clingy (unlike her), and it has been going on for almost three weeks. Turned out, she had a double ear infection. 😢 So we gave her amoxicillin for 10 days and she was better…

For about a week. Then she got the same thing again: congestion, cough, fussy. After two weeks, I brought her back in. Another ear infection. 😢 Now she was put on a stronger antibiotic, Augmentin. She hated the taste of that medicine, and it gave her a bad diaper rash.

During that same time, she got two new teeth on bottom, and two molars on top. And then she got Covid on top of all that! Needless to say, there have been some rough nights of sleep!

Long story short, I just took her in for her well-child visit on the day she turned 14 months, and she is now 22 lbs 9 oz (76%), 2 feet 7 inches tall (81%). At her (sick) doctor appointment on May 19 (only a week after her first birthday), she was 21 lbs 10 oz and 2 feet 6 inches tall.

Sleeping

Neola’s sleep is still not ideal. But since I’ve been sleeping on the floor with her (I’m on a twin mattress, she’s on a crib mattress), the wake-ups are generally not terrible (unless there are a LOT of them, then it’s painful). On an average night, she probably wakes up 2-4 times, nurses, and goes right back to sleep. On a rough night, she wakes up 6-8 times, and sometimes cries when I try to roll her back onto her mattress.

She mostly sleeps on her side, though recently she has started sleeping on her belly a little. She rarely sleeps on her back anymore. I am encouraged that there have been a few times when she has fallen asleep on her own (with me laying right there) after flopping around a bit (as opposed to nursing to sleep). She has also fallen asleep in her crib a few times after crying for 5-10 minutes (I reserve that for the times when she won’t settle down and go to sleep, even though it’s bedtime). That’s progress!

She is still consistent in her napping preferences: she falls asleep either nursing, in the stroller or in her carseat. I actually wish she didn’t fall asleep in the car so easily because she will take a 20-minute cat nap at 5 or 6 PM sometimes when we’re on our way home, and then she’s wired until 10 PM. We also discovered that she likes mowing the lawn with Travis.

Her typical schedule is wake up around 6:30 AM, first nap 9:30-10:30, second nap 1:30-3:00, bed around 7:30.

I’ve been tempted to feel guilty about Neola’s sleeping habits, and while they are often challenging (because holding a baby for naps when you have three other kids is hard), I come back again and again to the conclusion that these are just the circumstances God has for us right now, and we don’t need to “solve the problem.” Thinking that we can (and should) “fix” this leads to us trusting ourselves, instead of trusting God.

I’ve also reminded myself that all of our other kids had their own unique sleep challenges at this age, but are sleeping champs now, so we must’ve done something right! And I also found a community of people on social media who are supporting kids’ sleep habits without sleep training. Those are the messages I needed to hear: It’s ok to not sleep train! It’s ok to share a bed on the floor with your toddler! It’s just a season!

Eating

Neola is an eating champ! She eats almost anything. She loves pretty much any kind of meat (lunch meat, chicken, brat, pulled pork, pork tenderloin, taco meat, salami, meat stick, summer sausage). She also LOVES cheese (we mainly feed her cheddar and mozzarella). She also loves berries, grapes, watermelon, teething wafers, Graham crackers, Goldfish, and raisins.

I always feed her breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and then usually a couple of snacks too. Sometimes she eats a snack while I’m making food, and then she eats more while we’re eating. I’m actually kind of amazed that she’s not chubbier based on how much food she eats. 🤷‍♀️

She’s still nursing, mostly in the middle of the night, but also before both of her naps (if I’m planning to hold her, otherwise she will fall asleep in the stroller or carseat without it), and when she goes to bed. We’ve given her cow’s milk a few times, but she doesn’t seem to love it.

Like I mentioned earlier, Neola got two more teeth on the bottom middle (for a total of 4), plus two of her top molars, bringing her up to a total of 10 teeth. Now I think she’s starting to work on the bottom two molars. Teething affects her sleep a little, but it mainly makes her clingy and snotty during the day. This girl produces so. much. mucus!

Development

Neola is a mover and a shaker these days! She learned how to pull up on things and crawl up the stairs (but not down) around 13 months, and is getting into all sorts of things these days. She is pretty timid when it comes to learning how to walk though, and doesn’t even have much interest in pushing the alligator clacker around.

Her favorite activities these days are playing in the sandbox, playing in the water table, pulling tupperware out of the cupboard, crawling up the stairs, and nesting on the floor mattresses in her room. She enjoys swinging, but definitely gets to a point where she’s had enough sitting around and wants to get out. She also loves ripping apart tissues, napkins, wrapping paper, books, etc.; digging through mommy’s purse; and pulling books off bookshelves.

Neola is curious and likes checking out almost everything — except her baby toys! She plays with those the least. (After her hip dysplasia surgery, I might declutter most of her baby toys… we’ll see if she plays with them more when she’s not mobile.) Her favorite thing to play with is my earbud case (now with the earbuds taken out). She opens and shuts it, opens and shuts it.

Speaking of which, because Neola got Covid right before her surgery (and still tested positive two days before the surgery even though it had been over a week since her initial positive), her surgery got rescheduled to August 18. So we have a whole other month to do summer activities that involve water and sand. 🙂

Since her first birthday, Neola has gone kayaking on our river, boating on Gull Lake, camping at Itasca State Park, and on an weekend trip to Duluth.

She is almost always a trooper, and actually did no worse than normal with sleeping away from home, which is all I can ask for (haha!). The hardest thing about camping was that she just wanted to put the rocks at our campsite in her mouth all the time!

Of course, Neola still gets a lot of attention from her siblings. Corbin has started really playing with her too, which is super sweet overall, but he often gets a little rowdy and makes her cry.

Neola is the sweetest little girl, and we love her so much! I am really trying to soak up the baby stage with her, because it is going by so fast! She’s almost a toddler already! (single tear)

And that’s Neola at 14 months!

Annabelle Lyn: 13-14 Months

2 Jun

I keep falling behind on Annabelle’s monthly updates–each month goes by so fast! Annabelle was 13 months on April 27 and 14 months on May 27.20160414_150436 (Large)

Annabelle is at such a fun age. She’s learning new things everyday, getting into everything, and will be walking any day now. But first things first…IMG_20160416_093614 (Large)

Size

Annabelle is still wearing some 12-month clothes, but she’s mostly in 18-month clothes now (partly because they’re the warmer weather ones). She wears size 4 toddler shoes and size 4 diapers. The 12-month sunhat that we had for Emma at this age doesn’t fit her noggin though, so I had to buy her a 12-18 month size (and even that *just* fits).20160501_170207 (Large)

Eating

Annabelle is still a good eater and I think she went through a growth spurt a few weeks ago because she was packing away the food. Her favorite foods right now are: avocado, banana, blueberries, puffs, toast, crackers, noodles, tomatoes, mandarin oranges/clementines, pears, peaches, pineapple, kiwi, and cheese. She has several other foods that she will eat a small amount of as well. But banana, avocado, cheese, and oranges are the mainstays of her diet.IMG_20160415_183855 (Large)

Annabelle is still nursing, mostly because she has been getting teeth left and right! She now has all 4 molars (the 4th is halfway through the gum) and is getting the 4 canine teeth (between the incisors and molars) all at the same time. She’s been a little crabby, to say the least. She gets a dose of baby ibuprofen every night before bed, and that seems to keep the pain at bay during the night.

20160509_112048 (Large)If Annabelle wakes up during the night (which she still does once on average, though some nights she sleeps straight through and some wacky nights she’s up 3-4 times), I nurse her. I also nurse her right away in the morning, and before her naps and bedtime. Otherwise, she’s just eating food and drinking water. She doesn’t drink cow’s milk really at all… I haven’t tried very hard to get her to, but she doesn’t seem to like it much. I’m not too worried about it at this point.

IMG_20160512_152046 (Large)Sleeping

I really have no complaints about Annabelle’s sleeping habits. Would I like Annabelle to sleep through the night consistently? Of course. Will she eventually? I have no doubt. Am I going to try to sleep train while she’s cutting 5 teeth? Mmmm, no. Since she’s getting all of her teeth (minus the 2-year molars) right now, the end is in sight! And then I will work on weaning, which will hopefully mean her sleeping through the night too. Or maybe without teething pain, she’ll sleep through the night and kind of wean herself. **here’s hoping**

IMG_20160422_084041 (Large)Annabelle waffles between one and two naps a day. I try to get the girls to take their afternoon naps together as much as possible (giving me a much-needed break) but some days, it just doesn’t work. I’d say it’s about 60-40 (nap together-nap separately). If I can see that the naps aren’t going to overlap, I have Emma watch her iPad in her room for 20-30 minutes while Annabelle is napping, so I at least get a teeny break.

Because she still nurses and won’t take a bottle, I still haven’t spent a night away from Annabelle since she was born. But! The weekend of our wedding anniversary (May 19), Travis’ parents watched both Emma and Annabelle for an entire day. Annabelle took a 3-hour nap without nursing. I did end up nursing her that afternoon (so that I didn’t have to pump, and we were back at the house getting the boat anyway), and before bed. But it was encouraging that she went down easily and took a good nap without me. Next up is trying a whole day and night without me… but that might be after she’s weaned. Can you tell that my approach is Less is More?

20160524_151828 (Large)Development

Annabelle still isn’t walking but she’s oh.so.close. Similar to how long it took her to start crawling, I think she’s just being very conservative about things. She pulls herself up on everything and LOVES climbing (she’s gets very upset if she sees stairs and isn’t allowed to climb them right now). She has mastered the art of going down stairs too, and can turn around at the top to go down backward. That is also her strategy for going down the slide on our swing set. One of Annabelle’s very favorite things to do the past couple of months has been push her alligator clacker up and down the driveway. She can walk pretty fast doing it too!

IMG_20160515_133945 (Large)IMG_20160531_155019 (Large)IMG_20160516_161515 (Large)Unlike her sister, Annabelle does not like swinging very much. She seems to enjoy it for about 5 minutes and then wants out. (Emma could swing all the day long.) She hasn’t been a huge fan of grass or sand so far, but each day she gets a little more adventurous. Just today she was crawling around on our driveway and the grass in front of our house (which means filthy pants for mommy to wash!).

20160518_202307 (Large)Annabelle does love water like Emma does, though. She loves being in the pool and tub, and the one time we went to the beach so far this year, Annabelle walked in up to her diaper (I was not preparing for swimming). My parents bought Emma a water table for her birthday and Annabelle has really enjoyed that too.

IMG_20160422_083319 (Large)Annabelle has a handful of words now–dada (dad), dawdee (doggy), uh oh, ma (more), uh (up), ah daw (all done)–and we can tell that she’s comprehending more too. The other night, we were playing in the bathroom and I asked Annabelle if she wanted to take a bath. She looked toward the bathtub, said some gibberish, and crawled over to the tub. She’s also learned the sign for “more” and has used that a handful of times to request more food. She also loves blowing raspberries, just with her mouth and also on my arm. One night, I was trying to put her down for bed, and she just kept blowing on my arm for almost 10 minutes. I was laughing pretty hard.

20160518_203901 (Large)Annabelle still puts up with a lot of rough play from Emma. It is the most frustrating part of parenting right now. Seriously, the choices a toddler makes defy logic. The other night, we were playing with the big lego blocks while watching a movie. Emma took a stack of blocks and dropped it right on Annabelle’s head. WTH?!?! We’ve started using the 1-2-3 Magic discipline approach, but when Emma purposefully or even sometimes negligently hurts Annabelle, she immediately gets a timeout. Is it working? Who knows. Emma has a really hard time keeping her hands to herself. Poor Annabelle gets pushed, pulled, dragged, hit, bit, shoved, hair pulled, toys stolen, head covered with blankets–you name it. I think Emma views Annabelle as her life-size doll to play with. Annabelle also gets a decent amount of head bonks and bruises from her own exploring as well. Thankfully she hasn’t gotten seriously injured yet.

IMG_20160520_142721 (Large)IMG_20160413_135330 (Large)Right before Annabelle turned 14 months, she went on her third airplane ride, this time to Cleveland, Ohio. She did really well! I nursed her on the flight from MSP to Cleveland, and she slept most of the way. More details coming in a separate post about our trip…

And that’s Annabelle at 14 months!IMG_20160414_201231 (Large)IMG_20160406_115553 (Large)IMG_20160407_155607 (Large)20160510_092412 (Large)20160506_184527 (Large)20160503_094602 (Large)20160501_192127 (Large)20160429_130529 (Large)20160422_085150 (Large)20160422_085141 (Large)

Emma Grace: 14 Months

7 Jun

Emma is 14 months, going on 2 years. I mean, holy tantrums batman! Ugh. I’m really hoping that these episodes are just caused by her getting 5 teeth at once (3 of which are molars) and not just Emma’s new normal. Things that now anger Emma: getting her diaper changed, getting dressed, having doors closed to rooms that are off limits, not being able to go outside, not getting to play in the water (pool or bucket),  not being able to lift something that’s way too heavy for her, getting her hand or body stuck in a space that’s too small for her and sometimes, having to sit in her highchair or carseat. I now totally understand why some toddlers run around with no clothes on. Sometimes, it’s just not worth the fight.

20140520_084524On that note, we are starting to learn how to pick our battles. It seems that Emma is going to be a very strong-willed child. While I don’t think she should get to have or do everything she wants, I do try to find a way to reasonably accommodate her desires most of the time. For example, if she wants to play in the pool but it’s too cold, I let her play outside with a bucket of warm water while she’s clothed. She of course ends up getting wet still but less so.

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Though Emma has been frustrating at times this past month, she’s also been very fun in other ways. She can now do peekaboo, “so big!”, pattycake and wave bye bye when asked 80% of the time. She is becoming more of a cuddler – when we’re playing with toys, she’ll crawl over to me and give me a hug and kiss. One of my favorite things to do is snuggle and tickle her. She loves it and giggles a ton! She is still totally a momma’s girl, though she really likes Grandma Beth (Trav’s mom) too.

20140604_072543Emma still isn’t walking, but has taken a few steps between furniture, and likes to walk along walls. She is doing pretty good standing up by herself – at the cabin on Memorial Day weekend, she could stand up on the bed without holding on. She still loses her balance every once in a while but I’m sure she’ll start walking within the next couple of months – though she doesn’t seem to be in that much of a hurry! She likes to climb on things that are at her height, and loves to crawl through tables and small spaces.

20140604_185557Emma had her first mild injury this week. She’s bumped her head on things too many times to count, but this week, she pulled a small plant table and table fan over on herself. I’m very thankful that the table was tall enough that the fan went over her head and only one small part of the table hit her. I actually didn’t even realize that she had gotten that hurt until later (she hadn’t cried more than with previous bumps and bruises). She got a slight black eye and apparently bit her tongue because it’s black and blue in one spot. Poor Emma. She didn’t seem fazed by it though and the next morning, it looked much better.

This update is a little bit different than normal, but Emma’s size and sleep are pretty much unchanged from last month. She’s still wearing 12-18 month clothes, solidly taking 2 naps a day and sleeping through the night. Her naps did get knocked a little off kilter when she first started getting her 5 new teeth, but they’re back to normal now. Her nighttime sleep didn’t really change at all, except that it was a little harder to get her to sleep. Advil and teething gel to the rescue!

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Whenever I hold her for a nap, she always wakes up in a panic, like she doesn’t know where she is. This was her “I just woke up” face.

Her eating habits are also pretty much the same – I’ve been giving her 4 bottles a day (24-26 ounces total), plus 3 meals and sometimes 1 snack. I’ve tried decreasing the amount of milk Emma drinks but the girl loves her bottles! Right now, she gets a bottle when she wakes up, eats breakfast 1.5 hours later, drinks a bottle before her 1st nap, eats lunch when she wakes up, bottle before or after her 2nd nap, eats dinner around 5:30/6 and gets a bottle right before bed.

I’m planning to talk to the pediatrician at Emma’s 15-month checkup about any issues with her drinking so much milk (she still eats plenty of table food in my opinion) but I do think I’m going to try altering her feeding schedule a bit to look like: Eat breakfast with milk in a sippy cup right when she gets up, drink a bottle an hour or so later, skip the bottle before her 1st nap, feed her lunch with milk when she wakes up, bottle sometime before 2nd nap, dinner with milk, then bedtime bottle. I have switched the order for a few meals and she drinks less milk when she’s eaten a meal beforehand. If and when that works, then we’ll focus on phasing out the bottles.

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That’s her getting ready to rip her bib off. She doesn’t like wearing them very much.

Like I mentioned above, Emma’s new favorite thing is playing in water. Buckets, pool, dog dish, cup, you name it – she’s all over it. I change her outfit 1-2 times a day because of her being wet. I’m ready for the lakes to warm up so we can go to the beach!

20140523_135801At times, it seems like Emma says “Dawdies” in reference to the dogs, but she says it about other things too so who knows?

20140520_111643Travis is the king of nicknames, spinoffs and abbreviations, so in addition to the original ‘Biscuit’, we’ve started calling Emma these nicknames:

  • Bisky
  • Em-diggity
  • Emmalicious
  • Emma McCracken (used when she’s starting to get crabby)
  • Bisky McBiskerton
  • The Quick
  • Quicky McQuickerton
  • Destructobaby

We probably call her Bisky 90% of the time. I joke that she’s not going to know what her name is, since we call her so many different things. But we do still use Emma when referring to her possessions (Emma’s shoes), body (Emma’s belly), and asking her questions (Emma, can you do peekaboo?).

Well, that’s Emma at 14 months!