Archive for March, 2013
Month 11 was a big one for Nathan! On January 28th, a judge in the Henrico County court signed his adoption finalization papers, which means we are completely, totally, name-changingly FINISHED with the adoption process! It took us a little longer than normal (usually finalization occurs around 9 months), but we did it! Also of note in month 11 was our gigantic cross-country trip: from Roanoke to Luray to visit Tim’s folks to Maryland for the gender-reveal celebration of Nathan’s cousin-due-in-June (it’s a BOY!) with Tim’s brother and sister-in-law to Iowa (by plane and with thanks to a good friend providing a ride to the airport) for a visit with my sister and brother in law and Nathan’s 16 month old cousin! What a fun adventure all that was, and so nice to see so many people! Nathan did GREAT with all the traveling, including the flight to Iowa. We had plenty of snacks and a few brand-new-to-him toys to keep him entertained, but he actually spent most of the time with his nose glued to the window. He was especially enthralled when we landed in Washington D.C. at night–ooooooh, the lights! the lights!!! He graduated from an army crawl to a full fledge hands and knees scrabble at Tim’s folks, loved watching Uncle N and Aunt A’s pets, and had a wonderful time playing alongside his cousin Hannah. His least favorite part was the weather–which was coooold, especially in Iowa!Nathan’s other big accomplishment this month was learning to pull up on the furniture–starting with his toy box! 🙂
In his 12th month, Nathan did lots of practicing: practicing crawling, practicing standing, practicing taking steps while hanging onto anything he could reach, practicing bigger and bigger bites of dinner, practicing his mamas and dadas and tigger-tigger-tiggers. We noticed that he understands the words for many objects like fan, light, tigger, bear, ball, fingers, toes, and socks. He loves to play “fetch”, and crawl to find an object we ask him about. He has begun to express opinions about more and more things, making his pleasure or displeasure clearly known by his sounds and body language. He loves to go on “adventures”: walks around the neighborhood, trips to the grocery store, rides in the stroller or backpack, and church. Speaking of church: Sundays are tough but fun for Nathan. He won’t nap during church anymore, so his schedule is always a little messed up Sunday afternoons. But he loves going to church. He has a few very special church toys that he only sees on Sunday mornings (or sometimes on long car rides). That helps keep him occupied when needed. We usually keep him in the service for the singing, prayer, and bible reading and bring him to the nursery during the sermon. He loves the nursery; being there without us does not phase him a bit.
Although we’ve read to him regularly since he was born, he only this month took ownership of his books. How fun this was for us, to see him become independently interested in being read to! He often indicates that he wants us to read to him, and we have to have a few books within easy reach once we start as he breaks into sobs when we finish a book. He likes many books, but I think his current favorites are “Goodnight Moon” and a book about black bears. He got some new books for his birthday (YAY!) so we are excited to introduce him to those.
We don’t have his official 12 month measurements yet, but in our opinion he is very, very tall for his size! He is growing so fast; we notice it more now that he is pulling up on things. It seems like he can reach significantly more every week! He loves to stand in front of the mirror and give himself kisses. He also loves to pull up on the bathtub and bang on it. We had a trouble for about a week with him pulling up in his crib when he should have been trying to go to sleep, but he has mostly learned to stay sitting or lying down when he is in bed. He sprouts new teeth daily (okay, not really, but sometimes it seems like it!) for a current total of 4 on top and 4 on bottom. He still takes two naps a day most of the time, although he’s just at the stage where he can survive on one. He sleeps well at night, but we still haven’t managed to teach him about sleeping in on the weekends. 🙂 He plays a silly game with us where he shakes his head side to side really fast. It looks like he is saying a vehement “NO!”, but he does it when he’s really excited about something or trying to make us laugh. He can feed himself goldfish crackers and is getting pretty good with a sippy cup. I love having a month by month log of Nathan’s progress in this last year. It helps me remember how far he’s come, especially in the moments when I am impatient with his neediness. Parenting is the most draining, most rewarding thing we have ever done. We can’t wait to see what God has in store for us in the next 12 months!
We have much to celebrate, and celebrate we did. Two weekends ago, Tim’s cousin hosted a dinner for Nathan in Richmond, and we ran with a Winnie-the-Pooh theme (with an emphasis on Tigger, who is Nathan’s current favorite animal in the world ((followed closely by black bears))). Tim’s Aunt even made a Winnie-the-Pooh cake, which Nathan delved into rather timidly (Tim would like me to note that Nathan was NOT timid about delving into the vanilla ice-cream). It was so fun to do a big birthday bash with people who know how special Nathan is. That was important to me since we are still getting to know everyone in Roanoke, and few here appreciate what this past year has involved for our family. We celebrated again last weekend when we met Tim’s parents and another Aunt, Uncle, and cousin for a half-way-in-between dinner. It worked out well; Nathan slept the hour to and from the restaurant, and we still had plenty of time to spend with family over the meal. His actual birthday was much quieter compared to our “official” celebrations, but it was still very special and filled with all of Nathan’s favorite things: pumpkin pancakes started the morning off right, as did delving into a tub of new bath animal toys (thanks, Ben and Maria!) and running the dishwasher (we tease Nathan that he is our resident dish-watcher…he is transfixed by the running dishwasher). A yummy lunch, a long and windy walk, floor play time, some special phone calls and cards, park swings, cake, and more presents made for a whopping good finish to the day. Tim was able to get off work just a tad early and go with us to the park, which thrilled Nathan to no end. We saved a few special activities and presents for this evening, too, in order not to completely overwhelm him yesterday. I loved having a low-pressure day, and Nathan seemed to really enjoy the simple things we did. We also spent a lot of time remembering the past year, letting it all sink in. We’ve gained some small bit of perspective in 12 months, and we can look back and see God’s hand at work in many ways and in many lives. We don’t know what He’ll do in the coming year, but we’re excited to find out!