18 Months with Vi

I can’t believe I’m typing these words, but my baby girl is officially 18 months old!

A full year and a half with Vi in our lives and I honestly can’t imagine our family without her. In honor of this milestone, I wanted to write up a little post all about her and this stage of her life.

In many ways, she is very much like her brother was at this age but one huge difference jumps out right away: she is CHATTY! When LJ was 18 months old, he actually started speech therapy because he was only saying “mama,” and even that word was pretty inconsistent. Vi on the other hand, has too many words to count. Mama, daddy, no, cereal, yes, this, do that, Macie, ears, nose, hat, eyes, applesauce, bounce house, pickles, moon, bible, milk, play doh, socks, shoes, boob (lol), sleep, bye bye . . . the list goes on! She is really good about communicating her wants and needs and it’s very rare that we don’t understand what she wants.

She wants to do everything LJ does. She wants to play with the toys he plays with, she wants to do the activities he’s doing, she wants to eat the same snack he picks. If she sees him to something, you can bet that she is going to want to do it too! They are usually very sweet (I love when they want to watch TV and “nuggle,” as Vi says, under a blanket!) and generally play together well.

Vi is still breastfeeding before naps and bedtime and shows no signs of wanting to quit. I figured we would be done around the same time I quit with LJ (he was 13 months and uninterested in continuing) but she has been very insistent with continuing despite my dwindling supply. At this point, I’m 100% ready to quit whenever she is.

One reason I’m surprised she still wants to breastfeed so often is that she LOVEs food. It seems like she’s constantly eating or asking for a snack. She will eat anything that is put in front of her and definitely out-eats her picky older brother (he prefers to graze). Vi can handle an adult-size portion and generally cleans her plate regardless of what we had for dinner. Right now she particularly loves applesauce, broccoli, sausage, cottage cheese, and pickles. She’s always a complete mess by the end of a meal but she’s always a happy camper with a full belly!

She loves to read books! She will sit on my lap and flip through pages on her own, which makes my little book-loving heart so happy! She also likes to sit by herself, either on her glider or the floor, and flip through pages.

She especially loves a book my sister and brother-in-law gifted her for Christmas. It’s one of those books that is personalized and has her name throughout – I think she really loves hearing her name! She requests it almost every time before nap and bedtime and often insists on holding it while breastfeeding and then taking it into the crib with her to sleep. (The picture below is an accurate representation of any given day – she loves taking a ton of things with her into her crib!)

I think we’re finally starting to get our of her I-only-want-mama stage, which has been sweet but also exhausting for me. She LOVES her daddy and lights up with pure glee when he comes home. She has just started to give hugs with a little squeeze and it is the cutest thing. Last night he put her to bed with zero fuss from her and it was such a nice break for me! I’m hoping she allows him to do it more often.

Vi loves to be outside and doesn’t seem to care that it’s currently freezing outside. She constantly requests to go outside and if she sees someone put a coat on, she’s immediately requesting her own coat/hat/shoes to go with them. On days we actually go outside, she loves to swing or drag around a snow shovel.

Right now her most-requested indoor activities are bath time, play doh, bounce house, and getting out games from the cabinet. She loves to help feed the dogs and can now push her helper tower around the kitchen to get her own snack (she loves to eat apples out of our fruit bowl). She is a busy bee and keeps me on my toes as she gets into everything in our house!

Vi can be stubborn and definitely lets us know when she is unhappy she’s not getting what she wants, but she’s also sweet and spunky. We love her so much and are so excited to continue to watch her grow!

I love you, my sweet V!

Vi is ONE!

Yesterday, my sweet little Vi turned one year old. I can still remember meeting her so vividly – Justin saying “It’s a girl!” and her little body being laid on my chest. It doesn’t seem that long ago and yet, it is so hard to remember what our life was like without her. She was meant to be in our family!

csection 12

Since we already had her birthday party two weeks ago, we kept yesterday extremely low key. We opened a few cards that her grandparents and great grandparents had sent and I bought a few cupcakes so we could enjoy a special birthday treat. We sang “Happy Birthday,” LJ helped her blow out the candle, and then we all laughed as she fisted the entire cupcake into her mouth haha!

20200823_154606

Watching my kids turn another year older is always a bittersweet day for me. On the one hand, I’m so thankful for their growth, health, and life. It is such a joy and honor to get a front row seat to their lives and it truly is a celebration.

20190924_200202

On the other hand, birthdays are also a reminder that my baby will never be this little again. I love each stage of their lives and it’s always just a little sad to say goodbye to one stage, even though it’s exciting to welcome in another!

img_2525

For Vi, the baby year has been quite a ride. As a newborn, she gave us a run for our money: cluster-feeding, never sleeping more than 45-60 minutes at a time, and she did not like to be put down. The first few weeks were very challenging, and it took us about a month to hit our stride.

20190825_150525

Ever since then, Vi has been a mostly chill baby. She has a very mild temperament and is generally in a happy mood. The only time she gets fussy is when she is tired or when she wants mama. She is a huge mama’s girl and always wants to be held by me. She’s okay with other people as long as I’m not there, but if I’m in her sight or she hears me in another room, she immediately cries for me. It makes it a little hard to get things done around her, but it also makes for a lot of sweet snuggles!

20200218_152213

I think part of the reason Vi is mostly easy going is because she has a rough and tumble big brother entertaining her from the moment she came home. When she was an itty baby, he loved to hold her and kiss her. Now that she’s older, he’s giving her full body bear hugs and playing with/next to/sometimes ON her. We have to remind him a lot to be gentle with her but she takes it all in stride. She loves to be included in whatever he’ll let her play with and no one can make her laugh as much as he can – it’s fun to see their bond develop!

20200824_100719

Vi is very curious and super active. She loves to be held so she can be in on whatever is happening with people, but if she’s down on the ground, she’s constantly exploring. She loves to climb stairs, open doors and drawers, and get into whatever she can find. Remotes are especially captivating to her and I have to remove all the batteries before she gets ahold of them or she’ll keep changing channels on us. She is very close to walking and scoots along walls or the couch to move around and get where she wants to go. She keeps me on my toes for sure; I never know what she’ll try to get into!

20200804_182603

She also LOVES to eat. She will eat anything we put in front of her – hot, cold, spicy,  veggies, fish, new textures . . . she is not picky at all and usually ends up eating close to an adult size portion of food. She also loves swinging at the park, stroller rides, and crawling into our bathroom vanity cabinets haha. She loves splashing in the bathtub, playing in the water table, swimming, even just washing her hands under the faucet – she loves water!

20200621_151719

I wasn’t sure how quarantine would affect her relationships with people. From the time she was six months old to like ten months old, she almost never left the house or saw anyone other than her immediate family. But now that we are seeing family and some friends again, she is bubbly and friendly and interactive with others. She absolutely LIGHTS UP when Justin comes home each day and she adores her grandparents as well. She is a people person for sure and has such a joyful, smiley personality.

20200824_103308

Happy Birthday my sweet V! You are so precious to us and we are so glad to celebrate one full year with you!

20200824_103518

 

Six Months with Our Girl

Yesterday, our sweet Vi turned six months old.

20200224_083445

It feels both longer and shorter than that somehow. I cannot believe it has already been half of a year since this moment when I heard the words “it’s a girl!”

. . . and yet, I can’t even imagine our family without her. It feels like she’s always been with us.

20200222_111659

It’s all going a little too fast for this mama’s heart to handle, so today’s post is all about this girl and what life is like with her these days.

Relationships

Vi is honestly one of the happiest, sweetest babies. She is so smiley – I can’t help but smile too when I see her face light up! She especially loves her core family members. As her mama, I know we share one of the closest bonds. Whenever she’s upset, just the act of me picking her up and holding her usually calms her down right away. I love spending my days with her!

20200218_152213

She is totally a daddy’s girl already. When Justin comes home from work, she gets a huge grin, makes happy noises, and starts kicking her arms and legs in excitement. She adores him!

img_20200216_163837_721

And speaking of people she adores, her big brother LJ also tops the list. Oh my word. These two make my heart all melt-y. LJ loves to smother her in hugs and kisses and she follows his every move. She smiles when she sees him, tracks his movements across the room, and seems to genuinely like being near him (which is a good thing because he doesn’t exactly respect personal boundaries ha!) LJ is one of the few people who elicits genuine giggles out of her – she will laugh at the silly things he does or funny noises he makes and he loves it! One of their favorite little ‘games’ right now is he’ll blow zerberts on her belly and they both laugh. So sweet!

20200224_084734

When it comes to other people, it can be hit or miss. Vi is starting to recognize “stranger danger” – she will sometimes get a huge frown and cry if she’s staring into a face she doesn’t know.  It will occasionally happen with a babysitter too but we’ve learned that I just need to hold her facing out so she can observe the new face from the comfort of familiar arms until she warms up to the new person and then it’s fine. She is beloved by the ladies in the church nursery though – she’s always sweet as can be there and they love having her!

Sleep

Vi didn’t really have a 4 month sleep regression and has pretty consistently slept 8-12 hours every night since we moved her into her room. She either sleeps 8 hours, wakes up around 4 am, feeds, and goes back to sleep, or she’ll just sleep the whole way through the night until 7 or 8 am. Obviously, I prefer those nights 😉 but waking up once at four isn’t bad either. Maybe once every other week or so we’ll have a night where she’s waking up more frequently than that, but for the most part, she’s consistent!

While she’s great at night, she’s less consistent with naps. She sometimes takes a morning nap, she usually takes an afternoon nap, sometimes both, rarely neither. I think her inconsistency comes because of our schedule: mornings are generally the only time we can get out of the house during the day so we’re not always home. She’s pretty go with the flow and will at least fall asleep in her car seat if we leave the house, so that’s nice!

Food

We’ve just recently started introducing solids to her. Her very first food was avocado and she was … less than impressed.

20200212_182939

She’s also had some tastes of banana. So far she’s not really interested in food other than just playing with it or watching us eat.

She still does really well with breastfeeding and has always fed on demand. She started out wanting to feed every 60-90 minutes, which was exhausting for me. Nowadays, she will occasionally still want to feed that frequently, but she’s also able to go up to four hours in between feeds during the day. Similarly to LJ, she took a bottle well really early on, but once she got a little older and recognized she was drinking from a bottle, she wanted nothing to do with it. Now that she’s finally able to go longer in between feeds, I’m able to leave her with Justin or a babysitter to run errands or have time by myself which is good for both of us.

Activity

Vi is so interested in her surroundings and is always in motion, interacting with whatever is near her. If we put her on the ground, she’ll roll all over to reach and play with toys. She also loves playing in her activity center and is generally content to play there if I need a safe place to put her while I get some other work done.

20200130_092200

She also loves to look at herself in the mirror. I love watching her watch herself – she’s so proud of herself when she stands! (And those scrumptious leg rolls!!)

20200205_145542

She experienced her first snow but she was more interested in watching us than she was at discovering snow.

20200206_174003

While Vi is generally sweet, happy, and easygoing, she does have her moments. In particular, if I’m not home and she gets fussy for Justin or a babysitter, it’s generally because she wants to breastfeed and refuses a bottle. She will also sometimes get cranky when she’s overtired and we have to be conscious of putting her down in her crib when she shows signs of fatigue.

These last six months have been an adventure and I’m looking forward to making many more memories with this sweet girl.

20200224_08544220200202_133943

We love her so much!