samson paul >> 12 months old

Tuesday, February 28, 2017


Samson, 

While I managed to take your photos right after your birthday, somehow it's taken me three weeks to write this update. That's not a reflection on how fun and sweet you are. I think I'm just a little relieved that you're ONE.

You are a crazy coordinated baby. You learned to climb up the couch, climb off of the couch, climb onto the arm of the couch, turn around, and dangle until you slide safely onto the ground. You climb the little ladder up to the slide and you manage to sit yourself, turn around and slide down on your tummy. You can monkey your way up the slide part too. BUT SOMEHOW YOU STILL CANNOT WALK. You took your very first steps exactly one week after your birthday. I'm so excited for you to be able to walk. It will make going places so much easier because you won't be dragging your hands and knees all over and getting so grubby and germy. 

You are constantly muttering as you play. "Thss thss thss" You say "raaaarr" and "vvvvvvvvv". I think today you tried to say "teeth" while you were sticking your fingers in your mouth. 

You eat just about everything we put in front of you, although thankfully you've stopped eating stuff of of the floor. Your favorites right now seem to be blueberries, avocados, beans, and anything you can drink out of a straw. You LOVE drinking water out of your little water bottle. You really like to have a fork in your hand, although you aren't good at using it. You will hand it to me, I'll stab something on your tray and give it back to you, and then you'll eat it. Over and over and over. Till you throw it on the floor and say "uh oh". 

You can sign "eat" and "water". The signs look the same, but the screaming sounds are a little different to help distinguish. You sign "all done" by waving your arms furiously in the air and yelling "ahhhhh dahhhhh!" Are you ever not yelling? Just this week you learned to sign "milk" whenever you see your bottle. You say "uh oh", "mama", "dada".

We successfully switched you from formula to whole milk. You drink about 18 ounces of milk a day.

You have 8 little teeth. A super cute gap between your front two. I think you might be cutting a few more because your separation anxiety has skyrocketed lately. If I'm within earshot you cry and scream for me to hold you. You follow me all around the apartment, just begging to be picked up. The only time you're happy is when I'm sitting on the floor and you are playing within 3 feet of me.

For the most part, you are sleeping through the night. If you are wet or poopy, sometimes you'll wake up at 4 and need a diaper change. But we stopped giving you milk at night and that has helped. You still wake up around 6am every day, which is an hour earlier than any of us would like. Andy takes you in the front room and rocks you in the chair and you will both sleep there until Rory and I wake up at 7:30. It's not ideal and none of us really like this situation but it's where we are at right now.

You still absolutely love your knit doll that we call "Spotty". You suck on his ears and hug him close while you sleep. One of his ears is completely shredded by your teething.

Sometimes I find you sleeping with your feet up by your head. Like you were sitting and you laid your head down by your feet and fell fast asleep. I can't believe that flexibility! I don't have many sleeping photos of you because you've always been so good at going to sleep by yourself and I've never had to rock and rock and rock you like I did with Rory. It's such a blessing, but oh that sleeping face. I'm actually liking 1 o'clock church a tiny little bit because I get to hold you on my chest while you sleep. Your breath is always so nostalgically stinky.

You take two naps a day. One around 9:30 and one around 1:30. They each last about an hour and a half. When it's time for your nap I'll prepare a bottle and grab Spotty, we'll go sit in the rocking chair while you drink your bottle. When you sit up you always burp and I always mimic you, which makes you laugh so hard. I'll bring you in your room, turn off the light and turn on the fan, I'll usually sing "La Vie en Rose" while you point to all the different things hanging on the wall and make different noises and laugh and bonk your head against mine and give me eskimo kisses and try to put your finger in my mouth. I'll kiss you and put you in your bed and sometimes you'll whine for a few minutes and then go to sleep and sometimes you just roll right over and pass out.

You get so excited whenever you see me holding the ipad. There are a few games that you love. You will press your thumb against the screen super hard to get something to happen. Sometimes you'll kiss the screen. Sometimes you'll pound it with both your hands. We love the Sego Mini games and Peekaboo farm. The iPad has been super useful on all these long roadtrips we take to Spokane and to Utah.

Somehow you will always seek out Maya's toys and put them in your mouth, or toss them for her to go after. You have a really cute relationship with her. You've learned to pat her tummy and put your face close to her mouth for kisses. Sometimes you and Rory will chase her all over the apartment.

I love watching you drive cars across the floor. I love watching you goof off with Rory. You guys will climb all over the couches and laugh. You have a game called "Parade" that you play in the hallway. You will push your new little walker that we got you for your birthday, and Rory will ride his bike, and the two of you will drive back and forth in the hallway while I applaud.

Okay, I feel like there is so much more that I'm forgetting. You're turning into this sweet, opinionated, funny, little firecracker and I just can't get enough of you. Especially since I'm going through such a rough patch with Rory right now. I can always just turn to you to bring me comfort because you're never mad at me. You love me unconditionally and I just absolutely adore you.

Happy birthday baby boy!


samson paul >> 11 months old

Wednesday, January 11, 2017









Samson, Samson, Samson, 

You are the sweetest, chubbiest, yummiest, CRAZIEST, LOUDEST baby in the whole entire world. Oh my gosh. Sometimes I just can't take it. How can one baby be so delicious and difficult at the same time? I can't take you anywhere because you shriek like a pterodactyl EVERYWHERE WE GO. Your mouth is opened wide and you just belt out the loudest scream you can muster. I think it could be cute if it was like, once a day. But it is seriously all the time. All the time. It's the first thing I can think of when I think of 11 month old Samson so it's the first thing I have to write down. 

You've learned self defense. Now when Rory shoves you over because you're reaching for his toy you BITE. He doesn't push you so much anymore. You bite whenever you feel an injustice. If I've left you on the floor for too long and you're hanging on my legs you will bite me. If I'm sitting on the couch and you want to sit on my lap, you bite me. Oh and it just hurrrrrts. 

You also love to pull my hair. 

Okay, enough of the painful stuff. Let's get to the amazing, wonderful things about you. 

You dance. You bounce and bounce whenever there is music. Even slow songs. 

You haven't spoken any words yet, but I can tell you're trying. I can hear versions of "all done", "mama", "dada". I would love for you to learn how to communicate a bit better. Maybe it would reduce the shrieking. You make lots of "thhhhsss" and gutteral noises. 

You sign "water", "all done", and "eat" (although that one looks a whole lot like 'water'). 

It is absolutely impossible to change your diaper because you are STRONG and CRAZY, unless I'm singing "Popcorn popping" or "Once there was a snowman" because you suddenly snap out of trying to get away and you beam up at me while stretching as high as you can for the "snowman" song. 

You have six teeth. Six very sharp teeth, and a small gap between your front two that I'm totally in love with. 

You follow our dog Maya around. She is so incredibly patient, and scared of you. You tug and scratch at her hard. You would rather play with her dog bone than any of your own toys. If I can't find you around the apartment it's usually because you've crawled into her crate and are sitting there, waiting for me to say Heyyyy get out of there!

Lately you've been bringing us gifts. You'll come over and pull yourself up on the couch and toss a little toy in our laps with a big smile. I'll say Awwww thank you I love it! And then you'll reach for it and after I give it to you you toss it right back into my lap. 

You LOVE walking around while holding my fingers. You march march march with your feet popping up so high. If I let you go before you're ready to sit you will scream and be so sad. 

You will eat just about anything I give you. Your favorite foods are tomatoes, blueberries, smoothies, and any kind of juice.

Your relationship with Rory is really starting to grow. You play together rarely, but it's starting to happen. Rory always asks where you are when you are sleeping. He looks out for you- today he shut the toilet lid before you got to it so that you wouldn't try and dip your hands in. I love when you take baths together. That's when you're the closest. You play and splash and Rory will squirt you and pour water on your head.

The best is when you two play with your Dad. He will be rolling on the floor and everyone will be screaming and jumping on him and climbing on top of him. Andy will yell ROAR then Rory will yell ROAR then Samson will yell AHHHHH. It's one of my favorite things to watch. 

Let's see... you got a real haircut! You look SOSOSO good. Little stylin boy. I can't believe we kept your wonky hair so long for so long! Haha

We got Rory a new carseat and you got his old convertible one. Sorry about all the hand-me-downs. You cry every time I sit you in it, although you calm down after two seconds. You do a lot better in this car seat than you did in your infant one. 

Your laugh is this low cackle. I can never get you to laugh, but your Dad gets you all the time. You love going upside down, or bouncing in funny ways. 

I wish these pictures weren't so noisy. It's been wintery and dark all day long for the last week. But that chub. And those pouty lips and almond eyes and stylin hair. My goodness boy. I'm obsessed with you. I know I'm really going to miss you at this age. 

samson paul >> 10 months old

Tuesday, December 20, 2016







Hey Sammy Sammy Samson!

You goon! You sweet little bear. You are such a chunker now. You are such a hoot now! I can't get enough of you.

You've learned so much sign language! You are constantly signing "water". You're whole hand bumps bumps bumps against your mouth as you say "waaaaaaa". Right now you have a little pink sippy cup because we lost your manly green one. You also started saying "all done" by waving your arms crazily in the air and sometimes you say "more". 

Your mouth is always opened wide. When you smile I can see all your gums and those four teeth. Something about those two tiny top teeth make me so happy. 

You are always making some sort of noise. When you crawl you are muttering "Sss sss tha tha da da tha sa sa sa". Lots of blowing raspberries and clucking your tongue. You scream like a banshee if I ever leave your sight. Oh so so so so so much screaming. You also scream from your carseat, from the stroller, from your high chair... I must always be in your sight. 

But you are always looking at me from across the room or up from the ergo with a big open smile. Most of the time you are always whipping your head back and forth and back and forth, trying to keep track of whatever shenanigans Rory is up to. You'll look forward and then whip your head back and smile at me while I say "Hi Sam!" and then you'll look forward again. 

You are crawl-sprinting and you get into everything. EVERYTHING. Rory was never this destructive. Right now we have the ottoman and a large basket blocking your way into the kitchen and keeping you in the front room. You HATE it. You throw yourself onto the ottoman, working so hard to try and pull yourself on top of it. You whine and scream and yell until somebody comes and sits on the floor to play with you. We need a long term solution and much better baby proofing because this is not going to work for much longer. 

If I let you loose around the apartment you follow me around like a puppy. Exactly like a puppy, because Maya follows me around too. Wherever I go I have a trail. One grunting crawling baby and one super annoying overly affectionate dog. No privacy for me unless you're sleeping. 

You eat nearly everything I put in front of you. You eat more than Rory. You won't let me feed you though. You'll always grab the spoon and touch whatever is on the tip and then pinch it and put it in your mouth and then throw the spoon on the floor. It's been a while since you've had yogurt or soup or anything because it's impossible to give you more than maybe three bites. You love to violently whack your tray over and over, making your food jump off onto the floor. Maya is always right there ready to lick it up. I'm very grateful for her maintenance skills right now. 

You still don't sleep through the night, although you surprised me by doing it three nights in a row once. Very random. You usually wake up once and sleep until 6:30ish. You go to sleep around 6:30 or 7. If Rory isn't in bed you will whine a whole lot more. If Rory is also going to sleep you guys will chat with each other until Rory crashes and then you're not far behind. I love that you two share a room. 

You had your very first haircut. It was getting so mushroomy and strange. It only grew on the sides. The back looked shaved somehow. We just trimmed it a little and already it's too long. It's getting in your eyes. But you still look like Sam. You still look so cute. It's still a blondeish brownish ombre. I kept the pieces in a baggy. 

You will never keep your socks on. I'm so glad we got you some moccassins because without them you'd be yanking your shoes and socks off constantly. You can't get those moccs off. 

You love to give me kisses right on the mouth. My cheek is not acceptable. You will wait with your mouth open wide going "Ahhhhh" until I let you give me a giant wet kiss. You love the "mmmmmAAAA!" sounds and you'll do it over and over again. 

Changing your diaper is a terrible experience. You are absolutely impossible. It is literally a fight every single time. I try handing you toys, singing songs, playing games and you will still twist and turn and scream and do whatever you can to free yourself. I have to use my elbow to hold you down sometimes. The only time you are still is when you are drinking a bottle. 

You are still drinking formula. The idea of breastfeeding you is extremely weird. This has worked so well for us. You drink 6 ounces right before each nap and 8 before bed. One bottle in the middle of the night and that will settle you down enough for you to fall right back to sleep in your bed. I never rock you all the way to sleep. Our routine is pretty set. You hold Spotty (your knit doll- who now has a hole in his ear) and I hold your bottle and we rock in the gold chair while Rory plays and sometimes you'll watch him and giggle. Then I bring you in your room where the fan is on and the curtains make it nice and dim and right now the little Christmas tree is glowing and I'll sing either Silent Night or La Vie En Rose and then I lie you down in your crib and tuck you in with your rocketship blanket that Grandma Vidmar made you and leave. You will fall asleep within a few minutes. I never would have dreamed of doing something so quick and easy with Rory. He battled me so hard on every nap. I love that you fall asleep all on your own and that you are happy and comfortable in your crib. 

Your relationship with Rory is.... hmm.... well you two share a bedroom now which has made you more comfortable with each other. Which is mostly a good thing. Except when Rory treats you like his little baby pet that he can jump and roll and squish which makes you cry and whine and search for me to help! We are trying to figure out our play spaces right now. Rory is really into trains and, well, you like to tear up the tracks and break them apart and throw them and eat them which will absolutely send Rory into a fit every time. We try to time Rory's train time during your naps. Lately I've told him that if he wants to play something away from you then he has to do it in your bedroom, which, by the way, is constantly a mess because I never seem to remember to move the puzzles off the bottom shelf and so the pieces are always strewn carelessly around the room because you sure love to pull things apart. You. are. destructive. 

You seem like you're more member of our family than ever before. Earlier it was always like, yes it's Andy and Rory and me, and then there's the baby. But now that you are so interactive and playful you just seem more like we all belong together. I don't know if that makes sense, but it makes me so happy and comforted. I was worried for a while that you might always feel like an outsider. But you really do belong with us. I absolutely love being your mama. You are the world to me, you wonderful baby Samson.