Yes, Valentine’s Day can feel a bit contrived but at the same time, I love it.
Since adding the littles to our family, days can be a blur of endless activity. Some weeks it feels like all we do it get up, get everyone dressed, go to work, get everyone into pjs, and go to bed. So having a day to remember “oh hey, I love you and this crazy life together is a good one” is a good thing. There is no one else in the world who I would do this with than David. So I want to take a minute to say thank you to my love, my partner, my teacher, my critic, my comic, my shoulder, my rock, my everything.
Sorry last night we were too tired to make our “romantic” dinner in. But getting to bed at 9PM wasn’t terrible and the steak was good tonight nonetheless. I love you, David.
We just said goodbye this morning to Uncle Andy & Alex. They flew up to Boston from sunny West Palm Beach and landed in between two blizzards. While it might have been colder than they typically enjoyed, the boys delighted in their shared company, snow fights, and skiing. Alex did great his first time on the slopes and I cannot wait for Henry to join in on the fun next year. We played outside every couple hours and bundled up our southerners in all the winter gear we owned. It was so nice being able to spend so much time together and Henry and Owen loved every second of it. I hate having family far because these moments always make me heartsick for more. When it was time to say goodbye, Henry was so sad that the only consolation was promising to go down and visit them this summer!
January was a quiet month here. The weather was more consistently cold and it just felt good to slow things down after our big move and the holidays of last month. But even though we generally took things slow, a lot happened in these four weeks for Mr. O.
It became very apparent that little man loves the bath. He could splish and splash all day long. He loves to smack his hands and get covered in the water. He grabs at toys and bangs them against the side of tub, he stands up and babbles and plops back down to make waves. He wants to bang at everything, or throw his toys, food, and anything else he can get his hands on onto the floor! Truly a man in motion these days, he can barely be contained. He prefers to crawl about at ludicrous speed and wants to “get into” all sorts of mischief. He crawls away laughing while he makes a bee-line to the dog water or fireplace poker. Forever Mr. Smiles, it is hard to be “upset” when he is ripping the candles out of the fireplace when he turns to you and flashes that gummy smile and squeals in sheer delight. He is definitely proud of himself. He is in that phase where a bookshelf is the most basic and awesome amusement. To take everything off the shelf is pure delight and books while fun to read are better when you throw them about. He loves to tug off his socks and shoes and be in a natural state, and he loves loves playing with his brother (and stealing Henry’s toys). He has started to cruise more around the furniture and even pushes little carts around the house testing out that walking business. Since he can crawl there faster, he tends to drop down to his trusted form of transit but walking has to be on the horizon, no?! David thinks by month 11 but my guess still is post-first birthday.
Owen is completely a momma’s boy. A true stage-one-clinger, he must be touching me at all times. If I enter a room he drops what he is doing, if I leave a room he bursts into tears, and all he wants is for his Sherpa to hold him, cuddle, and do walkabouts the house. Most mornings he wakes up at 5AM and on weekdays our day begins but some special weekend mornings, I can convince him to snuggle me in bed and go back to sleep and we stay like that for another hour or two and my heart totally melts. At night, I cuddle onto my wild child while he quietly drifts to sleep and think, “who will you become my little fierce one.” He is unaffraid, undeterred, and unbelievably sweet. That boyhood rhyme of “snips and snails and puppy dog tails” suits you.
After momma, comes daddy but the puppies are close behind. He grabs at them for BIG hugs and laughs into their backs while they turn their heads around to lick his head. He pets and pats them and wants them to be nearby. He lets them lick his sticky fingers after meals and has started to drop little bites to them. He laughs and laughs while they eat up his leftovers. I cannot wait to see their bond grow over time. He has a preference for Bella but Buster as a preference for him!
One crazy morning, I took both boys solo to the aquarium and totally fell in love with being a boy mama. They were so hands on and curious and ready to get dirty and stick their little hands in the tanks. It was a crazy idea but it might have been my very favorite morning of the whole month. We ate lunch together and talked about the various fish and spent time observing the octopus. Uncle Andy and Alex came to visit before the month was over and the hugs and snuggles were delightful. Owen takes FOREVER to warm up to new faces but he knew Uncle Andy was special and had no trouble being in his arms.
This child is always hungry. He eats anything you put in front of him: curry soup, dumplings, steak, avocado, pasta, sushi, olive, tomatoes, onions, corn, broccoli, kale, lentils, spinach, and yogurt to name a few. Sitting in a restaurant is a piece of cake as long as he has munchies to play with and snack on. Should I keep everything crossed that it stays like that? Give him a fork or spoon and he is ready to feed himself or cover himself in his smoothie!
“Da da” is his favorite sound but we have been hearing some ma, pa, fa, and ca these days. And he will let you know when he is not happy and he will let you know when he is. His communication might be primitive but it is direct and clear!
When we say hello and say goodbye, he coyly smiles at you and lands one giant open mouth kiss on your lips and I think, “you may never nap for me again you stubborn little one, but gosh do I love you!”
We have been in our house for a little over a month and feel pretty settled but also feel ready to start tackling some of our “projects.” I guess every house is a “work in progress” as you inch slowly closer and closer to your vision for the space.
The first room we are working on is the playroom. Since moving in we filled it with a new couch, rug, bookshelf, and coffee table. It feels fine for right now, but it is also exploding with toys. One of my goals for over my March spring break will be to purge and donate toys. The boys have accumulated so many things from holidays and birthdays and just random gift giving. This room clearly shows they are loved by their grandparents and aunts and uncles who shower them in gifts. And we are incredibly grateful for the “daycare” we have been able to set up, especially since my mom watches the boys at home many days during the work week. The room keeps those boys busy busy. But it is time to start saying goodbye to some of things in order to streamline the work that the kiddos do in there. And, a lot of the baby toys can be phased out with Owen inching closer to his first birthday.
We also was to change the drapery which seems like an easy task but the previous owners bolted down those window coverings in a serious way! They are going to need some work to take off the various brackets that they deadbolted to the walls and then we will need to patch and paint, and find new curtains (although we might use our blue and white curtains here from our previous house) and then paint the walls, ceiling, and the trims (we want those to be white). So a lot to do to freshen up the room but while it might seem daunting, David and I are not in a rush. We see this as our forever home so we are excited to get started and will work through this patiently.