Rowen: Five Months

(How am I habitually publishing every single one of these nearly a month late? Oh well; at least I take the photos on time.)
IMG_20141229_093049070Weight & Length: 19 lbs 11 oz, 28″

Sizes: 6-9 months

Sleeping: This past month was super eventful and it’s definitely taken a toll on our routines, sleep being one of them. Rowen has wanted to be held for all naps and even all night, which although I love holding him isn’t always ideal or even possible. I want to start trying to get him to nap in his crib because his naps will be more peaceful/uninterrupted and I can get stuff done (he’ll still sleep in our room at night in the cosleeper until he’s too big for it, because I’m both lazy and paranoid.)

Eating: Still a little nursing pro, as his rolls will attest to. :) He’s definitely interested in Big Person Food and in a month will be sampling some! (I seriously can’t believe he’s already getting ready for solid foods; where does the time go??)

IMG_20141229_092636851 IMG_20141229_092744297Milestones/Memories:

By far the best thing in the past month was watching Rowen and Damien’s friendship develop. Up until this point they’ve been interested in each other (though more interest from Damien’s end obviously) but this past month they’ve started to really love each other. Rowen will see Damien and his eyes will light up. He watches him with awe and interest that up until this point has been reserved for me (but I’m happy to share!) Damien loves making Rowen smile and laugh and has started telling him he loves him (which is a recent Damien thing – telling people he loves them completely unprompted. Yeah, that’s another awesome thing. He’s also told me that I’m “pretty” and “perfect” and I’m pretty sure God makes three-year-old boys amazingly adorable and sweet to make up for the times when they are soooo incredibly frustrating. But this isn’t a Damien update, so moving on.)

IMG_20141229_093020854Rowen is still such a happy baby – except when he’s not, haha. He’s definitely got some strong emotions (wonder where he got that from?) but his dominant emotion is pleased with the world. His smile and laugh light up the room and get compliments from strangers wherever we go. Also high on the compliment list are his cheeks. They are sooo big and squishy and nommable!

Rowen can roll over from back to front and front to back. He loves playing with his toes when he can find them, and is close to sitting up by himself (once you sit him I mean; he’s nowhere close to getting into that position solo.) He loves to kick his legs wildly and joyfully when his diaper is off, and likes to watch Ripley if she’s anywhere near him (and grab her if she’s near enough for that.) Rowen continues to be a joy, and I absolutely love being his mama.

Now, here are some funny outtakes from his five month photo session:

I don't know WHAT is happening here, but Rowen seems delighted

I don’t know WHAT is happening here, but Rowen seems delighted




Throwing up gang signs?

Throwing up gang signs?

Tired of photography

Tired of photography. That’s okay Rowen, we’re done (until next month!)


Rowen: Four Months

Ahh!!! Time is flying by and my little baby is a big adorable chunk.

IMG_20141202_121758331Weight & Length: According to our wildly (in)accurate yardstick-and-bathroom-scale system, he is 20 lbs and 26″ (aka Very Big, as my arms can attest to.)

(Just for fun and reference, Damien was 19lb and 27″ at four months old.)

Sizes: 6-9 months

IMG_20141202_121510080Sleeping: Rowen has a hard time falling asleep but sleeps pretty well once you get him asleep. He sleeps in the cosleeper beside my bed and sometimes in bed with me. He goes to bed late (11pm-ish, though he naps in the evenings before that) but only wakes up once in the night, and sleeps in to 8-9am each morning (or would if we would let him, since I have to get Damien to preschool by 8:30 each morning and Rowen pretty much wakes up when I wake up.)

Eating: Nothing has changed since last month. Rowen is still a great nurser and hungry all the time. He’s started to get interested in big people food and will stare it down or even try to grab it out of your hand, but he’s not getting any for a few months.


Loves to laugh – he has a great sense of humor and thinks lots of things are funny. He’ll try to catch your eye and then smile really big to make you smile back.

He likes to ‘talk’ (aka make funny sounds) for long periods of time. He’ll also ‘talk’ back if you imitate his sounds.

IMG_20141202_121544571Has started grabbing at things and bringing them straight to his mouth (AND IT BEGINS.) He’s also started interacting with toys and seeing how they work (like the toys on the front of his bouncer, which by the way, he’s officially started bouncing in rather than making random movements to set off the motion sensor music.)

Rowen has started paying attention to the books we read, even attempting to grab at the pictures/turn the pages (which is good!) and has also started to pay attention to the TV (which is not so good) – once we had the jumperoo angled next to the TV while Damien was watching something, and Rowen was craning his neck and trying to turn his whole body around to see what was going on.

IMG_20141202_121850107The cutest thing that he does now is reach up and try to stroke my face. He also likes to play with my hair, and he’ll pet the dog (aka grab her ears) and grab Damien’s arm to get his attention. Consider my heart melted!


Damien Update: 3 Years

(Or 36 months. I think we’re past the counting-in-months age, and in fact since he was two I never referred to him as “__ months”, just “two” or “he’ll be three in December” when it was getting close to his birthday. But still, old habits die hard!)

Height/Weight: 38 pounds, 40ish inches (according to ye olde yardstick)

Sizes: 3T in most shirts and pants. 4T in some shirts and pajamas (for length; 4T pants would fit in length but would be way too big in the waist.) His shoe size is 10 or 10.5.


Daily Schedule: Because Damien is in preschool for full days, his daily schedule doesn’t change too much, which I think is a really good thing for him.

  • 8:00am: Damien wakes up and either Dan or I get him ready for preschool. He gets his lunch from the fridge and gets into his carseat. (And if it really goes that smoothly, high fives all around! As you can imagine it usually doesn’t.)
  • 8:30am: Damien’s school day starts. They play in their ‘classrooms’ (the Twos room is just gated off from the Threes and Fours area, while the baby area actually has Plexiglass walls) until breakfast, worship and circle time (the latter two are sometimes done as a big group, I think.) The school provides breakfast, which really makes our mornings go smoother. I don’t know everything that goes on during the day, but I do know…
  • 12:15pm: Lunchtime!
  • 1pm: Naptime
  • 3pm: Outside playtime
  • 3:30pm: Either Dan or I pick him up! (We’ve been trading off – if one of us does dropoff, the other does pickup. That way Damien gets to see both of us, and so do the teachers.)

In January Damien will be switching to the threes room, which means a new teacher, new classmates (though he sees both the teacher/classmates on the playground and at worship), and a lot more freedom of movement. I’m a little worried about the transition because transitions are never easy, and I’m not looking forward to weeks of difficult dropoffs… But he’ll learn so much in the new classroom so I’m trying to stay positive.


Sleeping: Always an issue. Damien naps at preschool, and on his own little cot too, usually for around an hour (just like home, unless someone is sleeping with him.) Bedtime at home is a bit (a lot) more complicated. He goes to sleep in his bed around nine (should be earlier, but college life means our evenings are invariably crazy) with Dan or me laying down with him. The parent sneaks out and he’ll usually sleep until 1am (unless he’s sick or something, in which case all bets are off.) At this point he’ll do the thing he’s been doing since he was a year old, which is wake up every twenty minutes or so unless there is someone physically in the room with him, which is why Dan just gets in his bed and stays the rest of the night there.

I’ve mentioned before that I really don’t like this system. I still don’t, but since Dan is the one that has to get up with him (due to him NOT being the one breastfeeding) it’s not up to me. Also we have so much on our plate that losing any more sleep or adding anything major to our routine (like attempting to sleep train) is something that’s impossible right now.

Eating: During the week, Damien eats both breakfast and lunch at school. We try to eat dinner as a family but it never happens on Mondays (both Dan and I are in class at dinnertime) and Dan tends to have meetings in the evenings, so that complicates things. Sometimes it’s hard enough just to make sure everyone ate, let alone together.

As I mentioned earlier, Damien’s preschool provides breakfast. I make Damien’s lunch every day and I’m surprised at how well he eats. He has a sandwich (either cheese, PB&J, or PB&Honey), crackers (goldfish, trail mix, Teddy Grahams), cheese, or a granola bar, and some kind of fruit/veggie (carrot sticks, raisins, banana chips, apple slices, applesauce/fruit and veggie squeezable containers), and either milk or chocolate milk. His lunchbox generally comes home 90%-100% empty, and if there’s anything left he’ll eat it after school.

Taking Damien to restaurants is a lot more fun these days, because he actually wants to eat and will finish most, if not all, of his meal, which makes spending the money seem more worthwhile. His favorite foods to eat include pasta, mini corn dogs, and sandwiches.


Kids in the double stroller

Potty-training: At a child-induced standstill. Yes, we’ve tried just about everything, and though he’s not resistant (it’s not like he hates the potty or anything) he just doesn’t care yet. Until he does, there’s really not much we can do except keep encouraging and hoping it catches on soon!

Interview: In October I asked Damien about some of his favorites. Here’s what he said.

  • Friends: Chloe, Brooklyn, Penny, Faithy (which is everyone in his classroom except the two boys, lol. Both boys were fairly new in October and if I asked again now he might include them too.)
  • School activity: Playing inside with trains
  • Color: Blue
  • Food: Pizza
  • Dessert: Cupcakes
  • Toy: Fire truck
  • Thing to watch: Little Golden Book Land
  • Song: The friend song from Little Golden Book Land (he also loves You Are My Sunshine and sings I’m H-A-P-P-Y all the time)



This summer held a LOT of change for Damien. He became a big brother at the end of July. At the beginning of August (five days after Rowen was born), we moved to a new house in a new neighborhood. In September, he started preschool (8:30am-3:30pm, five days a week) and got a new babysitter (since Kassi switched colleges.) It was a lot for one kid to take. In some areas he struggled (mainly, dealing with a sibling) but in other areas he’s amazed me at how well he’s coped (moving and adjusting to preschool, for example.) Most of all I’m just amazed at how BIG and grown-up he is. I look at pictures from last year and despite the fact that he hasn’t really changed in size, he looks and acts like a little kid now, and there’s no trace of the baby in the pictures left. (Oh my gosh, I’m going to make myself cry.)

Here are some things that happened in the past few months:

  • Went to a car race (and from that same post, in what rank as some of the most terrifying minutes of my life, got lost in a mall)


  • Started preschool




  • Went to the Sacramento Zoo (and didn’t write a post about it because my phone deleted all the picture from the trip! I was so upset! The only picture I have left is the following comparison one…)


  • Was the ringbearer in Auntie Kaykay and Uncle Jay’s wedding


  • Went to a Fall Festival (actually two – we went to the college one too, but he had a lot more fun at the preschool one)




  • Celebrated three Thanksgivings: one with Dan’s dad/stepmom/brother/sister, one with my family, and one with his mom and family. (I haven’t finished the post(s) for this, but I’ll add a link when I do.)


  • Participated in his preschool Christmas program (cutest.thing.EVER! I’m still waiting on the official pictures, but here’s a blurry cell phone preview:)

christmas program


(I’ve been saving these on my phone for months, so there are a lot of them. They are more or less in order from September of this year.)

Mama, I want to hang on your monkey branches. I’m in trouble, I’m a monkey in trouble. You’re the monkey sleeping. Dada’s the monkey with Rowen-monkey. Your phone is the monkey swinging forward and I’m the monkey swinging backward. You’re on my swing set.

Pushes elephant sound button on a book: Does that sound like a cricket?

 Me: Give me five!
Him: *kisses my hand*
Is Rowen awake? I wanna put mascara on him.
I don’t like music! I like pizza, and salad, and milk.
Damien on spiders: They’re not very yummy to eat. Some try to bite you. Some spiders are nice; some hurt you.
While sitting on Ripley’s back: I’m riding on her back like Scamper does! (from this movie)
D: Mama, Dada took something from me!
Me: What did he take?
D: That. A thing
Me: What?
D: Deodorant.
Me: …Damien that’s Dada’s deodorant.
When I tried to fix the dryer: There must be a solution!
Want you to put Ripley in the backyard so she don’t be frightened!
Me, to Damien: I love you, Damien.
D: I love you, Rowen.
Me: Aww, that’s so sweet that you love your little brother. Do you love your mom too?
D: No.
Me: Why not?
D: Because I don’t like you.
Later that night…
D: I like you.
Me: Oh, I’m so glad! Do you like Dada too?
D: I do, I do!
Me: And do you love your Mama and Dada?
D: I do, I do!
Me: Aww, that is so sweet! But stop picking your nose.
D: I’m gonna put it on your face!
After he did something he wasn’t supposed to, while holding a frog plushie: Froggy said it was an accident!
Playing in the other room: Do you know what day it is, Giraffe? It’s time for Shasha’s house!
I’m looking out at the world!
Kassi: Who’s taller, Mama or Damien?
Damien: Dada!
Making his farmer Little People toy give a speech (from the barn roof) to the other Little People: Ladies and gentlemen, I’m glad you came to the barn today.
As we’re leaving a restaurant: I’m going to leave my gopher shoes there… (laughs) I don’t have any gopher shoes!
Damien grabs Dan’s face & pulls him in for a big kiss: That was a spiky kiss!
I’m not gonna shake you down, I’m gonna get you down! I’m gonna bubble you down!
Playing with stuffed animals, looks down at Bubble Puppy: Bubble Puppy’s a mermaid? That’s silly!
After knocking something off his bookcase: Don’t worry, I got this.

Damien walks into kitchen, where I can’t see him. Starts whacking his broom around violently. I hear: It’s dead now! I see a piece of it!

The penguin has hair? That’s silly; penguins don’t really like hair. (‘Hair’ was the strings on top of a penguin mirror to tie it to a crib.)
Outside closed bathroom door: Mama I brought another book for you! DON’T HIDE!
Movie: Sometimes I think you have rocks in your head.
Damien, confidentially to me: I don’t think rocks are in ANY heads.
(after reading the book Little Toot) Wow! Little Toot’s a very big hero!

(when Rowen was crying in the car) It’s OK Rowen, we’re just going for a little drive! We’re almost there!

(to Ripley) Ripple Dipple, don’t sneak into our blocks
Damien walks into the bathroom, attempts to help me pull up my pants, then leaves and shuts the bathroom door saying, “I’ll be with you in a minute!”
I have an idea to do! Go to space! In a spaceship! And rush around and then go to earth.
(to Dan) I’m your big boy! I love having a big Dada!
(Dan laying on Damien’s bed; Damien jumps on his back)
Dan: Damien, whyyyy?
D: Because I want you to get off my bed. Because it’s my bed.
(A few minutes later…)
D: You have your own bed. Right in there! Right in Mama and Dada’s room!
Dan: I’m gonna get you!
D: You’re not gonna get me, I’m gonna get YOU!
Dan: Don’t be a stumpsten.
D: I’m gonna be TWO stumpstens! (‘Stumpsten’ is another word Damien made up. In our family vernacular it has come to mean ‘ornery’.)
Mama, I found you! (You did!) And then I gave you a hug, a kiss, and a banana!

(Puts bow in hair, runs to bathroom mirror) I look like a Canadian!

Who wants to play catch with me? *hurls eight coasters at my head*
I’m a selling guy; I sell pancakes!
Mama, I’m going to take you away to the dark side.
Mama, be happy and be safe and be lots of things! Don’t be sad!
I’m going on the angel ship! Oh no, there’s a financial there! We’re never never never never getting on the ship! (Note: Damien uses the word ‘financial’ a lot but he has no clue what it means, haha.)
Get out of the dark, it’s fishing pole time!
I am just a little working guy, Mama.
Mama, I love you and you love me. Dada loves Ripley and Rowen loves… (Me: What does Rowen love?) Just eating nurses.
(Who’s Rowen?) He’s just a baby I think.
(puts 2 puzzle pieces together) Look, they’re holding hands Mama!
Choo choo trains don’t like the rain either.
(So you remember the bespins. Well, apparently there is a new imaginary creature in Damien-land: the jenner.)
Me: What’s a jenner?
D: A jenner is a benner without ears.
Me: Where did you see a jenner?
D: At the South Pole. It was bringing me wheat. I touched the jenner for a long time. The wheat had eyes and a mouth.
Here’s a bedtime conversation between Damien and me from about a month back:
Mama, are you a girl?
Yes, I’m a girl.
I wanna be a girl like you, mama.
Why do you want to be a girl?
Because I want to put it up in a ponytail.
You want to wear your hair in a ponytail?
Well, boys can have ponytails, you just have to grow out your hair.
*hair discussion ensues*
Now, is there any other reason you want to be a girl?
*whispering* I want…to put it up in a ponytail.
Okay then.
(after exiting someone’s house at night) There’s nothing to see but the quiet trees. (he’s quoting Scuffy the Tugboat)
(to the tune of London Bridge)
When the bridge is falling down, falling down, falling down
When the bridge is falling down, my friend baby
(to Dan) Here’s your beautiful sandwich! And you can have a cookie with two ears!
A goat sat on a fat moon.
Make me an apple made of plums!
I wrapped this around my arm so the monster won’t come and grab my arm! (it was a towel)
Mama, my butt is dancing!
Our house is not on fire, but somebody’s house is on fire.
(in reference to his dollar store nutcracker) This is my little friend. The other ones are not my friends at the store. This one is my friend. He is so squishy! I squish him all the time.
(Star Wars related:) Mama, who’s in the wookie’s family? (and) I want to be a lightsaber when I grow up!
I’ll get in there [the toybox]. I’ll stay in there forever! And then the rain will come.
(while putting Silly Putty on a Little People sheep) If the sheep doesn’t have any hair, it won’t grow in. HEY, IT NEEDS TO GROW IN!
(he was singing and playing along on a keyboard in Target, and then he spoke into the attached mic like a DJ) It’s dancing time everyone, please come!

Rowen: One Month


32 Months

I haven’t done an update on Damien in a long time (well, since May, when he was almost 2 1/2.) Now we’re four months away from three and life is getting reaaally interesting.

10582945_716833898375663_5834223498972910231_oHeight, Weight, Sizes: 3’2″ (or 38″ if you prefer); 34 lbs;wearing 3T and recently moved up to size 9 shoes (he’s a little Bigfoot like his parents, haha)

Eating: Thankfully Damien is not a picky kid, but he doesn’t always want to eat at all, so sometimes we resort to “here’s a bag of Cheerios/Annie’s gummies/whatever you’ll put in your mouth.” He LOVES breakfast and eats a ton, then he’s not so much into lunch and usually just snacks. Dinner is somewhere in between. Favorite foods include pasta, pancakes, cold cereal (seriously, he loves all of my non-sugary mom cereal, lol), and anything with chocolate in it – especially chocolate milk. The only food he outright refuses is food he thinks is too hard to eat (like a sub sandwich with lots of veggies on it, or a pizza slice that’s too big for him) but usually if you offer him food in manageable pieces he’s willing to try it.

IMG_20140707_182932233Sleeping: Sleeping is the hot topic at our house recently. With a newborn bunking in with us (usually in his cosleeper but admittedly he does spend some time in the actual bed) we just can’t have a toddler in the bed too, for both safety and sanity reasons. So the plan is that I help put Damien to bed and lay down with him until he falls asleep, but if he cries out in the night Dan checks on him, and Damien stays in his own bed until it’s light outside. We let him get in bed with us in the morning for light snoozing, since I’m not really sleeping at that point anyway.

Well, the only problem is that Damien’s reaction to all the changes (new baby/new house) was to first reject both Dan and me, and then to continue rejecting Dan (and me when Dan isn’t around, but when we’re both here he gets the brunt of it.) So when Damien wakes up screaming and Dan goes in there, Damien’s reaction ranges between “GO AWAY DADA” to a full out top-of-the-lungs screaming, shrieking banshee tantrum (which he’s NEVER done before now.) It sucks, epically. (Don’t worry, Damien saves a few of these horrible tantrums for me in the daylight hours, but there’s something special about them when they occur at 3am and you desperately want to be unconscious.) After a few weeks of this we had a serious middle-of-the-night family meeting with Damien and it appears we broke through to him. He still wants me in there all the time and says mean things to Dan, but at least he’s not throwing demon-from-hell tantrums. (Update: he’s thrown one more tantrum, albeit not the worst one ever, but it does seem like we’re making progress.)


He asked to sleep under the covers for literally the first time in his life

Oh, and one thing that’s helped for whatever reason is we found Damien’s Soothe and Glow Seahorse (formerly known as ‘crackhorse’) in a box of baby stuff and he’s readopted it for nighttime cuddles. We’ve literally been trying since he was born to get him to adopt just one solitary thing for self-soothing and it looks like he FINALLY did (and what a nice thing to adopt too, since we can easily replace it if it’s lost.)

This is his "say cheeeese!" face

This is his “say cheeeese!” face

Language: Damien is basically talking like a normal person with a speech impediment these days. He speaks in full sentences 90% of the time and has, in the last month, finally integrated “I” into his vocabulary (instead of saying “you” for himself); he still says things like “hold you” very rarely but it’s mostly “I” or “me” now. He still has a few little toddler speech quirks – both Ls and Rs are Ws, for example, so in our house we have “Wowen” and “Wipwey”.

In the past two months Damien has started doing imaginative play, which is super fun to watch. The first video is from the beginning of the summer, and the second video is from yesterday, which gives you an idea of how his language has developed in a short time.


Damien used a whole piece of chalk to make a line down the sidewalk. He kept exclaiming, "How LONG it is!"

Damien used a whole piece of chalk to make a line down the sidewalk. He kept exclaiming, “How LONG it is!”


“My fork is going to vacuum things!”


Damien, handing me a toy oven mitt while also wearing one: “Mama, we’re football catchers! I’m an outfield catcher and you’re an infielder!”


Damien: “You’re gonna make your baby brother cry.”(in this case, “you” = “me”)

Me: “You should try to make him laugh!”

2yo: “NO YOU WANT TO MAKE HIM CRY.” Can’t wait…


Completely apropo of nothing: “I’m gonna sniff Mama all the way to the balloon ship!” (Since then, the balloon ship has shown up a lot in conversation. He’s even asked us to draw it, despite the fact that he invented it and we have no idea what it looks like.)



Sidewalk chalk is an acceptable alternative to lipstick, at least if you’re two years old


“A strange thing happened! I fell into a berry bush.”


New Wheels on the Bus verse; proof my son’s childhood is quite a bit different than mine: “Mama’s phone on the bus goes buzz, buzz, buzz…”


“There are ants on my butt!”


“Get out of the infield! You strike out of baseball! You strike out of tennis and tee ball too!”



Playing on the stairs while we were moving… so long stairs (and good riddance)


“Mama, ‘oof’ is a funny word!”


“A snail came out of my dream.”


“The toolbox will come back at some point.”


There’s a bird tweeting outside: “Mama, is that birdy asking for its mommy, Mama? Is there a worm?”


He found a sequin: “Mama, is this a policeman?”


Crazy shampoo hair!

Crazy shampoo hair!

Damien hands me a book: “Mama, read this to me!” It’s the Bedford Handbook.


“Is that your braids? Are they strong like Jesus?”


(Backstory: we have two versions of the same bedtime book. In one of them, something sticky got on one of the pages and ripped the baby’s face.) “Look! The baby’s face is not ripped! It is pretty and nice and beautiful!”


“My hair is like a merry-go-round!”


Damien: Lookit! Baby Rowen is looking at me!”
Me: He’s probably thinking, “I love my big brother.”
Damien: I love my little brother!


Rowen was on Damien’s bed and Damien climbed in next to him – I love good sibling shots that aren’t staged, lol


(Lest you think it’s all rainbows and sunshine with the new baby, here’s a quote from when Rowen was two weeks old:)
“I want to eat him away from you. I want to catch him in a net and throw him in the oven for baby and me.”


“My hand is dirty. It had bread sprinkles on it.” (Crumbs. He means crumbs.)


“What do you want to drink?” “Mingo juice!” (Mingo = mango)


(Damien made a creature using all of his animal Duplo blocks)
Dan, to Damien: That’s a chimera!
Damien, to me: That’s a come-here-a!


Sitting nicely in Sabbath School. Had to take a picture to prove it happens occasionally.

Sitting nicely in Sabbath School. Had to take a picture to prove it happens occasionally.

Damien’s version of “This Little Piggy”, using my hand:
“This little finger goes to Hawaii,
This finger goes to the South Pole.
This finger goes to the left.
This finger goes to the right.
And this finger…”
(Suddenly gets distracted by his own hand)
“My fingers are LITTLE!”


New game: stack the kid DVDs

New game: stack the kid DVDs

Ever since Rowen was born I’ve had a cough (not sure if it’s childbirth-related at all, or an asthma thing – we did recently move to a new house, after all) and Damien has been super interested in my cough drops. He asks me to stick out my tongue so he can see the cough drop and then asks what I’m doing with it. He also keeps asking for one, but I say no because it’s medicine and he isn’t sick. So one day I hear him making teeny tiny coughs: “Aha, aha… Mama, I have a cough! I need a cough drop!” I laughed for like ten mintues straight (and didn’t give him a cough drop.)

And here’s a parenting gem from Dan: “There’s never a good time to eat your shoe.”

Climbing on rocks on a walk through our new neighborhood

Climbing on rocks on a walk through our new neighborhood

Twenty-Three Months

I AM SO BEHIND ON EVERYTHING and that includes blogging. Life has been kicking my butt recently but I better get it together soon, because holiday season craziness is upon us! (Just keep swimming, just keep swimming…)

So, month 23!

He was pretending to pour from the empty Izze bottle into the Halloween shot glasses, like a tiny bartender. I swear he's never seen a shot poured in his life so I don't know where he learned it! lol (Also, last year a trick-or-treater gave us Halloween shot glasses in exchange for candy... it was very confusing.)

He was pretending to pour from the empty Izze bottle into the Halloween shot glasses, like a tiny bartender. I swear he’s never seen a shot poured in his life so I don’t know where he learned it! lol (Also, last year a trick-or-treater gave us shot glasses in exchange for candy… it was very confusing.)

Height, Weight, Sizes: I bet Damien grew a little bit because his 24 month pants are all officially too short, which puts him in 2T. Shoes are pretty much size 8, like I guessed last month. I bought him slippers in toddler sizes rather than shoe sizes, and even though they were supposedly 5T they’re too small for him! I guess that means his feet are bigger than the average five-year-olds, which is both strange and unsurprising, since Dan and I both have pretty big feet.

Damien's all set with his chocolate milk and raisins

Damien’s all set with his chocolate milk and raisins

Eating: Damien did better at eating what we eat during meals this month, which is to say he still has meals where he’s just NOT interested, but at least I don’t have to worry that no nutrition is going through his mouth hole. Which I guess I don’t have to worry about because of nursing, which he does at naptime and bedtime (and during the night.)

Naptime! (I have no idea why he's shirtless...)

Naptime! (I have no idea why he’s shirtless…)

Sleeping: After six months of working on it, Damien will finally allow Dan to put him to bed at night! Actually, he demands Dan and won’t go to sleep for me at all, which is kind of a mixed blessing. It’s great when we’re both home (I actually have time to do my homework!); not so great if Dan isn’t there. (He’ll fall asleep eventually but it takes MUCH longer.) I still put Damien down for naps and most of the time he’s fine with that. He naps for about an hour, and still sleeps in three-hour stretches, starting out in his own bed and moving into our bed partway through the night.

Language: Damien has started using complete, grammatically-correct sentences! He hardly ever just says one word by itself. In other words, he talks like a little boy instead of a baby, which is pretty incredible to think about considering this time last year his word count was three (‘mama’, ‘dada’, and ‘nang nang’ which meant ‘no’. I completely forgot about ‘nang nang’ until I looked back and read this post!) He still uses the word ‘you’ for ‘me’ (“Mama, hold you!” “Ripley give you kisses”) although he’ll sometimes speak in the third person and say ‘Damien’. The funniest thing he said this month was his attempt at ‘cornucopia’ – he says it ‘cenetopia’ for some reason.

So I looked all over for a boys Yo Gabba Gabba shirt with girl characters, because Damien likes them too, and finally found one! So I showed it to Damien and he said: "No DJ Lance?" So basically I can't win. (He still likes it though and asks to wear it often.)

So I looked all over for a boys Yo Gabba Gabba shirt with girl characters, because Damien likes them too, and finally found one! So I showed it to Damien and he said: “No DJ Lance?” So basically I can’t win. (He still likes it though and asks to wear it often.)

Firsts & Milestones:

  • Started having an opinion on the clothes he wears, and unfortunately his memory is good enough that I can’t just show him two options – he knows exactly the shirt he wants to wear. (Thankfully he doesn’t throw TOO much of a fit if said shirt isn’t clean. Which is good, because I like to draw the laundry chore out as long as I can, lol! For instance, today we all have literally one pair of pants left to wear; I’m doing laundry tomorrow and I guess we’ll all wear pajamas or formalwear in the meantime.)
  • Second Halloween, and first time he actually realized he was trick-or-treating! Ha. He had a great time! (Full post here.)
Reading with Hello Kitty!

Reading with Hello Kitty!


Like I mentioned earlier, I’m way behind in posts so I’ll update this with links, when there are links to post.

Damien, Bapa, and Horton read a story in the library

Damien, Bapa, and Horton read a story in the library

My parents came to visit and we had lots of fun with them, as always. Kaeli and Jay came down too so the whole family was together. (Here’s that post!)


Getting ready for an awesome hayride!

Went to three Fall Festivals – the first one was a neighboring elementary school that invited the community. Kassi had to go for her education class, so Damien and I accompanied her. There wasn’t really much for Damien to do there, but he liked seeing the fire engine, and he LOVED the hayride! (It was a seriously exciting hayride, actually. Probably not the safest, but that’s what makes it fun, ha.) (We were all holding on so we were safe, but some of the other kids weren’t being so careful. Thankfully we all made it in one piece!) The second festival was at the preschool, which was obviously very age appropriate, and I’ll do a separate post on that one because I have a few pictures (update: post here!) The final Fall Fest was the college one, which boasted amazing food as always. Damien went in his first bounce house (he refused the ones at the first two festivals for some reason) but the highlight was watching the Chemistry club make ice cream with dry ice (and eating it afterwards! Yum!)

Hello, giant wooden orangutan friend (is it an orangutan? My zoo knowledge has apparently been overwritten by babien knowledge)

Hello, giant wooden orangutan friend (is it an orangutan? My zoo knowledge has apparently been overwritten by babien knowledge)

The weekend before Halloween we took Kassi and met Kaeli and Jay at the Sacramento Zoo (more here!)

I only have a few photos from Halloween so I'm saving them for that post. Instead, here's Damien insisting on wearing the top part of his costume to the grocery store the day after Halloween.

I only have a few photos from Halloween so I’m saving them for that post. Instead, here’s Damien insisting on wearing the top part of his costume to the grocery store the day after Halloween.

Damien’s second Halloween! (Full post here!)

The weekend AFTER Halloween, we went to the Aquarium of the Bay in San Francisco! (All my Groupons expired in November, thus the action-packed weekends this month, ha.) (Not sure if I’ll write a separate post on this or not. I don’t have that many pictures – I forgot the memory card – so we’ll see if I feel wordy enough.)

Last weekend Kassi, Damien, and I left Dan at home and drove 3.5 hours to our cousin Daylene’s bridal shower. We spent Saturday night at Dan’s mom’s house and ate dinner with their family (it was Dan’s grandpa’s birthday so that was timely) and Sunday afternoon Damien hung out with Shasha while Kassi, newly-arrived Kaeli, and I went to the shower together. I don’t usually enjoy shower-type events but I actually had a great time! We saw lots of family plus some friends I hadn’t seen in awhile (and I met my friend’s adorable baby, which made me miss Damien despite the fact that he would have been far too crazy for the shower.

And this week I finally got officially re-accepted to PUC for winter quarter. I still have a lot of stuff to figure out (mostly financial) before signing up for classes, so wish me luck/send a prayer my way that classes will still be available when I have everything sorted out! With the schedule I’m hoping to get, between Dan and I (and featuring two hours by Kassi) Damien will have a family member to watch him and won’t need a babysitter. (Ideally we were hoping to get him into preschool but they’re all full this quarter; maybe next quarter or even next year. It’s a long waiting list.) At any rate, we’ll be looking at a lot of changes soon – but first, we have to get through the holiday season and, gasp, Damien’s second birthday!

Twenty-Two Months

Running around Home Depot with a flower pot on his head... that's my kid!

Running around Home Depot with a flower pot on his head… that’s my kid!

Two months from two!

Height, Weight and Sizes have not changed at all since last month, except Damien’s shoes are getting a wee big smaller. I think he’ll be in size 8 by the end of the year (which is crazy except that both Dan and I have big feet, so really not all that crazy.)

Eating: Damien is a typical toddler eater who will eat a bunch sometimes and other times not eat much at all, but I’m not worried. He’s not picky about certain foods in particular so that’s nice. Still nursing but I’m working a little more on keeping ‘nurses’ to naptime and bedtime. I think once I start school in January this will be a lot easier.

Sleeping: The improvement of last month turned out to be temporary (of course it was) and now he’s back to sleeping in three hour stretches (except last night where I don’t think he dozed for longer than fifteen minutes… but that’s not normal so I can’t complain too much.)

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Feeding Thomas breakfast

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Is it yummy, Thomas?

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You’re too cute, kid!

Language: Damien’s sentences are getting better and better! It’s getting so that words that he don’t know are easier to think of than words that he does know. He likes to pick up big words (like ‘episode’) and even uses them in context sometimes. Damien will repeat EVERYTHING you say like a little parrot, but actually understands what you’re saying so he can say it again later in context (so you better watch out!)

  • Instead of “another” he says “yeven” (as in, “want yeven one bread”, which translated to adult-speak is “I want another piece of bread”)
  • Added “see yater” (see you later) to his bye-bye words – today Dan was carrying around a leaf for awhile on a walk and when he dropped it, Damien said “see yater, Dada’s yeaf!”
  • He likes to walk around patting people while saying, “Mama here, Dada here, Kassi here, Rippy not here. Rippy downstaiahs”
  • Adds ‘too’ to things (as in “Muno frowing ball! Romee frowing too!”)
  • Knows the names of most of his favorite TV characters – we’ve got all of Yo Gabba Gabba covered, most of Sesame Street, and now he’s working on Bubble Guppies (it popped up as a suggestion for kids’ TV on Amazon and now Damien is ALL ABOUT THE GUPPIES)
  • Damien calls gravel “baby rocks” (and, this is the not so cute part, ALWAYS tries to put it in his mouth. He likes to eat sand and dirt too. I’d be madder if I didn’t do the exact same thing as a kid, for way too long, until fourth grade I think. And I’m fairly normal now… right?)
  • Speaking of babies, he also likes to point out “teeny tiny babies” in public or on TV/in books (though sometimes the ‘babies’ are only a few months younger than him). He also occasionally talks about his “baby sister”, who I swear doesn’t exist (unless we’re talking about Ripley and at five years old she’s his big sister.)
  • Asks to “sit in Mama’s/Dada’s yap” (if you haven’t figured it out by now, his Ls are Ys, haha)
  • ‘Sings’ (and I use the word ‘sing’ loosely; it’s more ‘chants’) some songs, including: the alphabet song, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, the Wheels on the Bus, Happy Happy Home (which happen to be all of his favorite songs)
  • He also tries to beatbox (they have a recurring guest who beatboxes with the kids on Yo Gabba Gabba) and it’s pretty freaking hilarious
Bedtime means it's time for a dance party, right?

Bedtime means it’s time for a dance party, right?

Firsts & Milestones:

  • First real haircut
  • Lost the last chub roll on his arms. He still has a teeny little roll on his thighs, but that’s almost gone too. Especially with the new haircut, there is pretty much no baby left in this kid (*sob*).
  • Dan started school and our schedule totally changed
  • First cupcake eaten all by himself
  • New favorite TV show – Bubble Guppies (he still loves Yo Gabba Gabba and Sesame Street [‘Sessy Steet’]/Elmo’s World)
  • Favorite Bible story – Baby Moses (we read a Bible story every night before bed, and evvvvery time we have to look at the picture of Baby Moses)
Reading at bedtime with Dada

Reading at bedtime with Dada


  • We went to the pumpkin patch twice! (Well, two different patches.)
  • Damien had a doctor’s appointment
  • Lots of playing with Gobby – if Damien or Gobby hears the other one outside, they’re drawn magnetically. It’s funny because they don’t interact that much when they’re together, but talk about each other constantly when they’re not. I guess that may be the way toddler friendships work. One morning I babysat Gobby and I think Damien liked having a friend at his house! They loved ‘cooking’ in the play kitchen. :)
  • Related: one time Jackie (Gobby’s mom) and I took the boys to the Biology building at the college to see the caged animals. They have fish, snakes, and lizards, and one of the rattlesnakes was getting riled up by our presence. Damien, never seeing a rattlesnake before, assumed that the rattling noise meant the rattlesnake was, I don’t know, shaking some maracas and he started to dance wildly around the building lobby.
  • I should mention that dancing wildly is something he does all the time. He LOVES to dance. Last week at the laundromat there was a three year old there and Damien kept inexplicably dancing around him in circles. The older boy was pretty confused… what can we say? We have a very special child, lol.


(plus the cupcake videos in this post)