My Baby Is One

My sweet baby boy turned one on Monday and obviously loved his birthday crown.

Birthday boy

I am honestly astonished at how fast his first year flew by. It seemed the anticipation of his birth far outlasted this past year. When I groggily woke up to his cries for me around 2 am, picking him up and pulling him into bed with me, I got choked up thinking how much he’s grown and changed.

At a more reasonable hour Josh and I did a little birthday decorating around the apartment (ugh, we’ve now spent three birthdays here). When Anderson woke up and I brought him into the living room to say good morning, he gawked at the decorations, pointing and trying to grab the streamers. He loved it.

He, Ella and I enjoyed blueberry pancakes and some Disney tunes as we waited for his birthday banana cake to finish baking before running a last minute errand to Target. It’s almost as if he realized he could get away with most anything on his first birthday. He ate up his favorite lunch (mac and cheese) before settling in on my lap for a little pre-nap nursing. The apartment was so quiet with Ella in bed and Lucky snoozing on his bed. It was just the two of us, looking at each other, studying each other’s faces, just as we had exactly a year prior.

A sly little smile crossed his face as he doozed off momentarily. Of course as soon as I put him in his bed, he woke up and protested any form of napping that did not include me. I gave in, taking everyone for a walk when the rainy weather cleared.

We had a little family celebration. There was another favorite meal of his (grilled cheese, carrots and blueberries), cake and gifts.

I took my time putting him to sleep that evening. Extra cuddles were necessary for me and for him. I just need a moment longer to hold onto my baby who is growing faster than I thought possible. It feels like he was just the slightly red and bruised baby who was awaiting a name, that I met on a cool summer morning in August.

Maybe it’s the difference between having two to focus on rather than one, or maybe the months are going faster – but time needs to slow the hell down.

All About Anderson – 11 months

Nearly two weeks ago now Anderson hit the final month of his first year. Tear. He’s full of funny faces and expressions of both happiness and displeasure at being denied his wants.

11 months 5

11 months 1

11 months 2

11 months 3

He weighs 23 lbs and is about 29.5 inches long. His growth has definitely started to level off but his development has not.

This month it seems like all the sudden he’s a little person. Not that he hasn’t always been a person, but he’s so aware of his surroundings and very interactive. He observes the world around it often pointing (still with his whole hand) and grunts until we tell him what it is or let him touch it.

He has clapping down and can even do it on cue.

He seeks out laughter and once he realizes something gets a laugh, he’ll continue to do it. He laughs all the time and squeals with delight.

Watermelon face

He babbles constantly. He has down mama, dada, Ella and ba. We’re not quite sure what ba is for but he says it a lot.

He’s on the move constantly whether it be crawling or cruising. He’s thisclose to walking. Any day now I suspect. It’s no wonder he’s finally sleeping well. He naps for 2-3 hours every afternoon and most nights if he wakes up, it’s just for a quick milk fix and then right back to sleep until 8 am or so. It’s been so nice!

This month we went to Nebraska to celebrate the Fourth.

Anderson 4th of July

Anderson went on a boat for the first time.

Anderson boating

He was more interested in nursing and trying to figure out how he could get out of his life vest.

While we were back we also went up to the Van Kirk family farm. We had three generations of Van Kirk men together which was pretty special.

Four Generations

He also got to see his first fireworks show courtesy of his cousins and uncles. There was no way he was going to bed with all that noise going on.

He was pretty amazed and just sat staring at the sky with his mouth agape.

I’m sure that is how I look when I watch him lately. It seems like he was my little baby just yesterday and here we are just a few weeks from his birthday!

AJ's favorite spot


All About Anderson – 10 Months

Second child syndrome, right here. I totally missed my sweet boy’s nine month update and here we are at 10 months (ok more like 10.5). It’s incredibly hard to get a good picture without Anderson trying to take over the camera.

Aj 10 mnths 1 Aj 10 mnths 2 Aj 10 mnths 3 Aj 10 mnths 4 Aj 10 mnths 5

My handsome little man is about 22 lbs and 29 inches long.

This month has been all about movement – ours and his. The biggest life change he experienced this month was moving from Colorado to Minnesota.

IN front of Medford AJ in his old room

It’s kind of sad knowing that he will never remember our house or living in Colorado. Good thing I took lots of pictures.

Now onto his mobility. He went from army crawling to full fledged crawling. When he wants to get somewhere really fast, he puts his head down and guns it. He has gotten so fast! It was maybe a day later that he decided he was ready to pull himself up.

From that day forward, standing has been his favorite thing to do. He gets himself right up and has even started to cruise a little bit. He stood unassisted for about a two seconds, one time, before falling to his butt. I feel like he’s going to be walking in no time.

He is in the throws of separation anxiety. He is absolutely a momma’s boy.

Anderson and mom

When I leave his sight, he generally freaks out. Gets upset and starts crying, even with Josh trying his best to calm him, nothing works until he’s in my arms. It’s like magic. The tears stop and he snuggles himself into my neck.

Though he’s typically on the move, he has a cuddly side. He’s started giving little hugs and will pucker his little lips for kisses.

Puckering up Kissing

Eskimo kisses make him crack up and he has a very ticklish neck.

We’ve started working on sign language. He’s got milk down for the most part and will put his hands out when he’s done, but hasn’t really started signing all that much. I feel like I’m behind on working with him on it, but we’ll get there. He’s started babbling a lot more – dada, mama, baba, but we’re counting his official first word as Ella. I’m not kidding, it’s his favorite and when he sees his sister, he says Ella. I thought I was imagining it until friends and family noticed it.

Not the best video but you get the idea.

Baths, crawling in lakes, signing songs, and crawling under things are all favorites right now. Being outside in general is exciting.


He also enjoys eating, mainly fruit right now. He loves watermelon, grapes and pineapple in particular.

He does not enjoy anything that requires him to sit still. This includes, but is not limited to, diaper changes, getting dressed and undressed, being put into his car seat, or sleeping.

I take that back, he likes to sleep with me.

Cuddling with mommy

Some nights he’s kind enough to sleep right through, others he’s up a few times until I finally give up and bring him into our bed. He sleeps like a Wildman these days and will kick us until we move so he can get comfortable.

AJ sleeping in the big bed

Being in the apartment is difficult for all of our sleep patterns. I think he’ll sleep better once he’s in his own room and doesn’t have the entire family right outside the door all the time. If not, well then it might be time for some sleep training.

I cannot believe that he will be a year old in less than two months. I want to bottle up these moments, the long summer days playing, the extra cuddles I get at night (sleep deprivation and all), the gummy smiles and chubby little body.

AJ Cooking

All About Anderson – 8 Months

Well we’ve reached the 3/4 of the year mark*. How this year has flown by. I swear in the past month our baby boy has switched on the development fast track.

8 months 2 8 months 3 8 months 4 8 months 5 Aj 8 mnth

Anderson is now 20.4 lbs and 28.5 ish inches long. He’s well on his way to outgrowing his 6-9 month clothes which means we really need to get shopping for him. Poor thing is running out of options that aren’t like muscle shirts or capris on him.

This month Anderson went on his first flights. He is a natural traveler just like his sister. He slept most of the way on our flight out to San Diego and the entire flight, take-off to landing, home. The little time he was awake he just looked around and happily sat with Josh and me. We were a bit worried about his ears since his infection just will not go away.

photo 3

He also went to the beach for the first time. He loved eating the sand but was not too sure about having his toes in the water. Please take a moment to check those awesome baby thighs.

First time at the beach

He also went to his first wedding where he looked quite dapper.

Anderson wedding

Speaking of his infection, he’s get tubes in his ears. We avoided them as long as possible with Ella but with three months straight of infections, we were ready to go ahead and schedule Anderson’s surgery rather than have him on any more antibiotics. He will feel so much better once his ears don’t constantly hurt.

Aside from ear infections, he’s doing great. He’s enjoying trying all sorts of new foods. His current favorites are hummus, butternut squash, avocados and bananas. He will try anything and everything we give him.

photo (6)

He even enjoyed his first pieces of chicken and pork chop. He’d rather feed himself than have us help him, which has really helped him master his pincher grip. He swiftly picks up food and gets it right to his mouth.

The biggest accomplishment this month has been movement. Anderson is super quick to spin himself around and tries to bring his knees in when he’s on his belly. He also can push himself backwards and has started to attempt the army crawl. When he’s sitting up, this is what happens:

He’s trying so hard to crawl and pull himself up. It looks like we’re going to need to lower his crib mattress sooner rather than later. When he does attempt movement we all cheer for him and clap. He gets so excited that both arms start going like he’s waving with both. He’s almost got clapping down but often twines his fingers instead or slaps his legs to make sound.

He’s babbling like crazy, mainly baba and when he screams, we swear he’s saying Ella. I would not at all be surprised if his first real work is Ella rather than mama or dada. His favorite things to do are play with his sister, bath time (preferably with his sister so they can splash each other), lotion massages after his baths, being talked to and being tickled. He also loves looking at himself:

He’s so busy observing the world around him, he hates being confined. Sleep is kind of a crap shoot. Most nights he goes to bed between 6:30-7 pm, wakes around 10:30 pm then again at 3:30-4:30 am. I appreciate when he waits until 4:30 to wake since I’m getting up already at that point.  He had some great nights after he got down the baba sound and learned just how loud he can be. I think once he figures out how to crawl he’ll sleep better. His sleep always regresses when he’s trying to learn a new skill. I think the ear pressure relief will help too!

Over the past few years I’ve forgotten how fun each new stage is and how fast they learn new things. From movement to switching items from hand to hand, hitting them together to make sounds and searching when something he had has gone from his sight line. It’s amazing to what his little brain try to figure things out.

Though he is quite vocal when we do something he doesn’t like, such as change his diaper, take away potential choking hazards he’s grabbed when his sister isn’t looking, or putting him in his car seat, he’s more squeals of joys than cries. His smile crosses his whole face and brings a twinkle to his eyes. His laughter is contagious and I just cannot get enough of his chubby little hands.

Oh my sweet Anderson…

*Ok, so I wrote this two weeks ago and hadn’t uploaded pictures. Now that he’s two week away from nine months – it’s time to hit publish.

All About Anderson – Seven Months

Well well well, look who is neglecting Anderson updates…again.

mommy and aj 7 mnths

Our sweet boy is seven months old. He’s 19.2 lbs, 27 inches long and rocks some chubby cheeks that are irresistibly kissable.

7 months 2 7 months 1 7 months 3 7 months 4

This month we made some big moves. Anderson moved into his own room! I think he likes having more space and I appreciate him being, mostly, out of our bed. The first few nights he slept like a dream. Then next few, not so much, then it was better again. His sleep is all over the place. Sometimes he’ll sleep for 7-9 hours straight, other nights he’s up every 1-2 hours. The good nights are so exciting, the bad, exhausting.

In addition to moving into his own room, we also started solid foods!

sweet potato

His favorites seems to be green beans, sweet potatoes, avocados and bananas. He’s also tried peas, carrots, oatmeal, pumpkin, asparagus, oatmeal and a tiny drop of applesauce mixed in with pumpkin and cinnamon. Now that we’ve started giving him food, if I have anything in my hand or a plate in front of me, he’s trying to grab whatever food he can reach and eat it. I have to be careful.

His grasp keeps getting stronger and more intentional. He can now switch an object from one hand to the other and back again. He loves reaching down and grabbing his feet, bringing them up to his face. Since he learned to sit up, he hasn’t been into rolling at all, but he’ll high center himself and use his arms to move himself around in a circle. It’s a slower process, but he will turn to get the toy he wants.

Separation anxiety is starting to kick in already. The other day after I nursed him upon arrival at daycare, I put him on the floor to play while I gathered his things. I went out of his sight line and he started screaming. I came back around so he could see me and he immediately stopped crying and smiled. It happens in reverse too. Yesterday he was crying when I opened the door to his classroom, I caught his eyes and he smiled and squealed, outstretching his arms to me. That’s one of my favorite developments this month, the outstretched arms, reaching up to me.

Current favorite things:

Ball pits

Ball pit

Baths in our kitchen sink. It’s just the right size for him. He loves splashing and using hte sprayer to spray himself, and the entire kitchen with warm water.

His little car. Ella also enjoys it, but he can just hang in there forever.

AJ car

Row Row Row Your Boat which I have to get video of because he just laughs.

Cuddles, bouncing and being talked to.

Currently dislikes:

The swing at the park. He’s just not quite into yet.

Aj swing

Taking medicine. Poor thing is on the path to ear tubes, just like his sister. He inherited my bad ears. Clever boy has learned to lock his little jaw shut. When we do pry it open, he’s learned to spit the medicine right back out. It’s quite the battle.

Snot sucking. I mean I don’t think I’d like it either, but who wants to have a snotty nose?

Being told he cannot put xyz in his mouth. Oh man, can he express displeasure when we take something away.