Friday, February 23, 2007

ON the growth chart!

Today, Connor had his belated 18 month appointment. Not only has he FINISHED immunizations for a few years, but he has gained enough weight to make an appearance on the growth chart my doctor uses. It's not a big number, but I cheered (which caused Connor to cheer) when Dr. R. announced he had made it to the 5th percentile (which is not even the lowest bar!). He's still in the 75th percentile for height and head size. When Dr. R. said he had a big head, Connor grabbed his head and said "big". She about fell over when Connor counted to 10 and was totally impressed with all his yammering in the office. She said that he talks a ton, particularly since he's a boy and boys often talk late. Ed's response to that news "well, I guess he takes after you in some ways". Connor also barely cried when he got his two shots, and was quickly over it when he was rewarded with two stickers. I look forward to finding where he decides to put those two stickers when I come home this evening.


Friday, February 16, 2007

Counting, and other new developments

A couple of days ago, Connor displayed his latest skill - counting to 10. And this is a great skill, since that's about the number of words he seems to add every few days.

Connor enjoyed Ed’s 3-day weekend by hanging out at the zoo all day on Monday. He woke up talking about the zoo (after asking to go the zoo all day on Sunday – but that was not in the cards). Ed and Connor learned that though the grounds of the zoo typically open at sunrise, the zoo doesn’t really open up until 10:00. And on Monday, the grounds were closed until 10 because snow was being cleared at the zoo. So…they spent a couple of hours hanging out in the neighborhood playing in the snow. But boy were they ready when the gates were opened!

On their way home - many hours later - Connor and Ed picked me up from work. Connor was pretty dazed at the time, but later he told me all about the hippo (it's big), elel (also big), the ball - which apparently was an armadillo that Connor got to get very close to. He even got free cookies since we have finally become zoo members. Now that's cool!

This morning, Connor informed Ed he would like to go to the farm. These photos are from our most recent trip there. I’m sure my family will be proud to see Connor riding on the tractor as if he knows what he’s doing. I’m looking forward to warmer weather because then the farm has hayrack rides, which should be quite fun.

Connor is becoming quite adept at building towers and castles (which are remarkably similar) with giant legos. During our last visit to the Building Museum, he and Ed built this: And, it seems like every day I come home he and his nanny have built a new structure, which she informs me must NOT be taken down until mama gets to see it. For a while, I wondered whether it was Connor or his nanny building the structure, but after playing blocks with him a bit yesterday, I'm fairly convinced he plays a major role in the process. I'm sure his Pappy is proud.

Connor also has two friends - Bubba (aka, Isabella) and ZoZo (Zoe), that he really seems happy to see. Bubba shares a nanny with Connor, and she's been gone the past 3 weeks. Surprisingly, he really seemed to miss her. But luckily, Zozo's nanny started bringing her over to play regularly, which seems to work out quite nicely.


Happy 18 month birthday!

Dear Connor,

A few days ago, you turned eighteen months, and I can hardly believe it. You’re changing so fast now, that it’s tough to keep up with you. The day after you turned 17 months, we were playing at the park and you looked up at me and said “bye” quite distinctly before heading off to take care of some important toddler business like running, or climbing, or eating dirt. And a few nights ago, you started telling your dad “ni ni” and waving when you’re ready to drink your bottle of milk, snuggle up, and prepare for bed. Your vocabulary has exploded this month and this, quite frankly, is simultaneously fabulous and nerve-wracking. When we understand you, it’s usually fabulous (unless you’re asking for a “k k”, in which case we can no longer ignore you and pretend we don’t know you want a cookie). But at the same time, it’s super frustrating when you are very clearly telling us you want something and neither your dad nor I have any idea what you’re talking about. You try to be patient with us. You look us right in the eye, say the word slower, and repeat it several times. Still, sometimes we just don’t get it. Sorry about that.

The playground used to be a little bit of a harrowing adventure when we went without a second adult. Now, Connor, you own that equipment. I can start you out at the bottom of the structure, then you climb to the top, and finally slide down on your tummy.

You’ve been honing your climbing skills in a gymnastics class, and your dada reports that you are the only kid who on occasion, will – for no apparent reason – begin running around screaming with pure joy. Those are the moments we live for, Connor. Of course, you will sometimes go to class and spend the whole time conning your dada into going to the water fountain and never really doing any of the class things. You don’t appreciate the stretching at the beginning (after all, the equipment doesn’t have any of those other children on it!) and the end of class is a little boring as well, because there’s a brief activity with a parachute. One would think you would enjoy this, but you are very skeptical.

Your dada hung a Grateful Dead poster at the top of the basement stairs (an appropriate welcome to Grateful Ed’s Brewhouse in our basement) and the first time you saw it, you were totally shocked. You looked at me as if something was really out of place and Connor, I wanted to tell you how much that poster scares me, but I am trying very hard not to project my irrational fears onto your psyche, so instead I smiled and said “Dada’s poster”. Ever since then, whenever you see the poster, you smile and shout “dada”.

You’ve started playing actual games that random people might recognize. For example, you can play ring-around-the-rosey – and you certainly understand you’re supposed to fall down at the end, but you’re more interested in seeing your dad and I on the ground. Perhaps because we have a much greater distance to travel than you. You can also play “round and round the mulberry bush” and you make the most excellent “pop” at the appropriate time. Your dad was singing to you the other night, and he taught you to sing “toot toot” in a couple of appropriate places, and this might be the best yet.

You have also thrown your first, full-on tantrum. It was hard not to laugh at the ridiculousness of it, but I kept a somber face and after giving you a few minutes to go nuts, I explained that we all have bad days sometimes, and lots of people wanted to run into their room, slam the door, and lay down screaming on their rug. Then, I distracted you and it was over. You repeated this feat twice, though you haven’t had to pull it out in the past couple of days. Mostly, I think you were tired when you put on these fine displays. I fear for our future Connor, because you have the will that could only be possessed by your mims’ German relatives.

A few days ago, you totally freaked me out, but I think I have finally recovered. Before your nap, you were talking up a storm about the “zhoo” and the “ba pa” that you enjoy being carried around in. I told you after your nap we could go to the zoo and dada would carry you in the backpack. You took your nap, and after about an hour, you stood up and called for me. I went to your room and you looked me right in the eye and shouted “zhoo” and though I didn’t really mean we would go to the zoo the minute you woke up, I figured you deserved some credit for remembering the promise, so off we went. It was about 40 degrees outside – which means your dad was overheating but normal people like you and I were a little chilled, so we went into the “el le le” house and you stared at those enormous animals for over an hour. This was good, because it meant I could shove a huge amount of food in your mouth because you were distracted. Then we went to the gorilla house and I have to say, Connor, if we ever need a babysitter in a pinch, that mama gorilla might be perfect. She was playing the most exciting game of “sheet” ever with her toddler, one of your favorite games.

You successfully used your potty chair – and dumping it was very exciting. I have no dreams that you’re close to being potty trained, but I figure it can’t hurt for you to get used to the thing. And hey, if you happen to take a shining to it and no longer need diapers – woohoo!

You have learned to climb up on a stool, which provides you access to many things we used to keep out of your hands. You also completed your first couple of painting projects, with no unwanted casualties. We sent these to your grandparents for Valentine’s Day.

The collection of “emma” [animals] in your bed is growing. Sometimes, you insist on sleeping with “do do” the dog, err Siamese cat, just like the good ol’ days. Others, “buh buh” the pink bunny is the only animal that will do. But a few nights, “ssss” your seal is number one and “duh” the duck is also likely to be the animal that has won your heart for the evening.

You have really fallen in love with your nanny, and this is fabulous, because often in the morning when she arrives, you just show her what you’ve been playing with and invite her to come on over. It really is the sweetest thing.


Friday, February 9, 2007


On Thursday, I came home from work, and Ed asked Connor whaT the birds drink. Connor puT on this very impish grin and said "waTer" and, in case you were curious, he drinks milk from a "boTTle". Previously, these words were "wawawa" and "baba". So now, noT only does Connor have an ever expanding vocabulary ThaT is nearly impossible To keep up with, folks besides Ed, myself, and Connor's nanny can even decipher some of thaT vocabulary. Amazing. Simply amazing.

On the downside, I think all of these new words are keeping him awake at night - or causing him to wake up early. This is not good for anyone's sleep, and I'm hoping he settles back into an 8:00PM - sometime after 6:00AM pattern very soon. Not sure I can cope much longer.