What a wild and crazy couple of months we had!
Christmas descended upon us like a load of bricks, but I think you took it in stride.
We went to the Opryland Hotel to see the lights and walk around a bit, and you thought that was a pretty good time, especially when Daddy held your hand and let you take the lead for a while. You didn’t care that there was a line of people behind us who couldn’t get by; you were struttin’ your stuff! And besides, those people behind us were totally cheering you on.
And what about the giant cat wearing a big hat and boots and carrying a sword, hanging around the hotel? And you thought Mr. Kitty was cool.
Christmas Eve, your aunt Danielle and uncle Brandon brought your cousin Shannon by to visit when they passed through Nashville. You had never met Shannon before and thought it was totally weird how she was just standing up and sitting down and crawling around and walking a little bit. Like, who is this kid in my house showing me up? So you reached over and tried to pluck out her eye, but she was pretty cool about it. Then you guys crawled around together and it was pretty heart-warming, I have to say.
We got up Christmas morning and woke Daddy up to open presents. You got me some very pretty jewelry and Santa brought you a silly laughing Elmo that you kind of thought was weird and tried to choke.
We went down to Grammy and Paw’s to celebrate Christmas Day with them. You got to hang out with cousin Levi and everyone passed you around for snuggles and tickles. You hardly slept on the drive there so by the time we got around to opening presents, you were pretty tired and on the verge of major grumps. (Relatedly, any chance we could go back to the days of you conking out the instant you got in the car seat? No?)
We set down present after present in front of you (too many!!!) but once you realized you weren’t going to get yelled at for ripping paper, you kind of got into the action.
You got to have another Christmas at your Grandma’s house in East Tennessee. It took a really long time to get there since it snowed and we crawled along the interstate for a few hours, but we finally got there and you had a big time with your other cousins. And you tried to take your Grandma’s tree down for her a few times. That was very sweet of you but you should ask first!
All in all it was a very nice month, December.
You have been working on walking and talking and can now very clearly identify a kitty when one walks into the room. “KEEEEE!” you will squeal. And while you still are very apprehensive about standing up and letting go — you break down into tears when we let go of you and you are standing there alone — you have nearly mastered walking alongside us with just one hand being held. You’re still a little stiff and it would probably be easier if you’d just relax, but I realize it’s a Very Big Deal for you. So we’ll keep at it without applying TOO much pressure.
You do this thing now where we’ll be walking around the house and you’ll steer us toward the staircase because you like to walk up the stairs. You take them one at a time, each leg extended fully, one at a time, to get you up there. It looks sort of like you are goose-stepping, which is terrible and hilarious. You also figured out how to climb up the stairs — all of ‘em! — the other day. Just out of nowhere. Going back down is not so easy, though.
You speak in full sentences, although they are garbled and we have no idea what you are saying. But your tone is very clear! You seem to have very strong opinions about things. I have no idea where you could have gotten that from.
You’ve been a little on the grumpy side here and there, which makes us think you might have some more teeth coming in. Or maybe you’re just a human being with actual emotions, whatever! We went to a Super Bowl party and you got very ornery and I nearly threw in the towel and came home, but Uncle Nick graciously bounced you on his knee until you were placated.
One thing we have really got to get you to learn is that hitting is not hilarious. Granted, it is when it’s done in a Stooge-like manner for an audience. But not as an everyday interaction. And I’m sure the expression on my face when you smack the glasses off of it is pretty funny. BUT. You are going to be that kid if we don’t get you to learn the no-hitting rule before you get into a daycare situation. See also: Head butting. No joke, every morning you greet your reflection in the mirror with a head butt and a cackle. You cray.
Your last checkup at the doctor’s office a couple of weeks ago showed that you were 22 pounds and 33 inches long, which put you in the 97th percentile for height. You are tall and skinny like your dad. Lucky you! And you have sprouted a very tiny freckle just above your upper lip. We noticed it a month or so ago. Is it weird if I think of it as a beauty mark? I promise I will not go Hawthorne on you.
You’re still crawling your silly little army crawl, and you can BOOGIE, son. You can cruise around a whole room as long as you don’t have to take any steps without something to hold on to. Jack is very patient with you and lets you pull at him and “pet” him (smack him over and over) but Sally sees you coming for her with that crazed look in your eye and she scoots on outta the room. You gotta work on your approach, my boy. Ladies need subtlety.
I gave you your first bubble bath the other day (not sure what took me so long) and you were seriously weirded out by the bubbles. Like, you didn’t really even want to touch them. I hope that with time you will come to appreciate the whimsy of a good bubble bath, for I am excellent at making crowns out of bubbles. You’ll see.
I’m looking forward to spring so we can let you loose in the yard and let you eat a little dirt and grass and get that gut good and immune to the germs of the world. Or something. Science!