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Sawyer James11 new things at 11 months!


1 more month before my baby is a year old! How did that happen?? In an attempt to make this post as interesting to you all as it is to me and my dad, I’m trying a list format. But let’s be honest, you’ll never think my baby is as amazing as I do.

So, here is my list of 11 new things Sawyer is doing at 11 months old!


1. He is crawling! Yay! Annnnd frogging. This is what I call it when he moves both hands at the same time and then drags his sprawled legs behind him. He’s pretty affective at it! It’s like it takes too much brain power to crawl so he aborts that plan and just frogs it. He’s also taking a few more steps. Nothing much, but I’m seeing the confidence start to come out.


2. SIGNING! I’ve been signing to him for a few months now while he watched very intrigued. I kept waiting for him to bust out his moves. Nothing. Just this past week he signed more and all done! Yay Baby!

3. He started growling like a lion, trumpeting like an elephant. Must see. Totes adorbs (that’s for Amy).

4. He is into pinching me while he nurses. This is my least favorite of all the new things, BY FAR! He likes to roll my skin between his finger and thumb while he nurses. Usually he prefers my tummy and he’s pretty gentle. But occasionally he pinches really hard or pinches the back of my arm. I mean seriously, I have scratches all over my tummy. I like that he has a funny quirk, but not when it hurts!


5. He hates showers. Like, cries when the water hits him. Seeley would snuggle and zone out in the shower. This baby gets stressed and anxious. He is solely a bath man.

6. LOVES meat (I’d guess sausage to be his favorite) and blueberries. And kefir. And smoothies. Let’s face it, this boy really just loves to eat. Seeley was a breast milk man. Eating was overrated in his book, so it’s really strange to have such a big eater. Sawyer really only nurses at bedtime, which is kinda nice and also sad. I’m not even close to ready for him to be done with it yet.


7. He loves to swim. The big kids started swim lessons this month and he gets to be in the pool at the same time. He reminds me of a wind up toy. I hold him on his tummy in the water and his arms and legs scoop and kick non stop. I’m so tempted to let him go because I think he’d make it to the other side of the pool at the rate his body is moving! Of course, I haven’t actually done it because I’m sure he’d sink straight to the bottom. And panic. Not good options.

8. Willingly gives me whatever is in his mouth that he shouldn’t have. “Sawyer can I have it?” And he pushes “it” to the front of his tongue and opens wide. His favorite thing to put in his mouth is toilet paper scraps that’s he’s thrown all over the floor. Yummy!


9. Opens really really wide for food. Like jaw extended fully open, saying “AHHHH!” Hilarious.

10. Naps on a cushion on the floor. Yes, like a dog. My only solace is that his bed is made out of blankets, not an actual dog cushion. Of course I’m sure people make dog beds out of blankets too. Oh well. It just makes the most sense for our current needs. He’s comfy and safe and sleeps well.


11. Has a pretty excellent little mullet working. His hair on top is really short, but in the back it’s thick and long. It’s not obviously a mullet all the time. I can usually hide the long parts by just plastering it to the back of his head (sounds cute, right?) I want to cut it and even him out, but I’m not sure how’d he’d handle the clippers. So, for now, he’s mini-mullet man.


So there you have it! 11 things you didn’t know about my baby as he enters his 12th month of life.

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Sawyer 10 months


This has been a big month for my little guy. He went on 2 plane rides, climbed mountains in Arizona and got 4 new teeth. He is also finally on the move! Ok, one thing at a time.

We went on a 3.5 hour flight to and from Arizona for Trav’s brother’s wedding. Sawyer was the wildcard. I knew the big kids would do fine but I wasn’t sure about the baby having to be in one spot for that long. He got restless on the way there but overall did great. On the way home he was on day 2 of his 3 day fever so he slept the whole way home. I was sad for his sick little self but it made for a very smooth flight.

He got his fever on the day of Jared and Joey’s wedding and after the third day of fever it broke and his whole body broke out in a rash. I had a moment of panic. Rashes are not my forte, but after some googling I was confident it was a common childhood virus-Roseola. After a few days the rash disappeared and he started feeling like his usual, busy self.


During this month he had 4 new teeth break through! There’s not been much in the way of a full nights sleep around here. All 4 are on the top of his mouth. I’m excited for when they’re in all the way. He’s going to look SO big with 4 top teeth!


Something I’ve been meaning to write about so I don’t forget is this baby’s love for the Frozen soundtrack. After we saw the movie in December, I got 6 of the songs on our iDevices and the kids listened over and over and over. Then one night we were driving home from Indy and Sawyer was a wreck. Unhappy about the state of his existence so after exhausting every other idea I had I turned on Frozen music on a whim. And he stopped crying. Specifically he liked Let it Go. He didn’t sleep any more on the ride but he listened contently to Elsa sing her heart out about setting herself free from hiding who she was made to be (I totally get that girl).

Since then, if nursing him isn’t calming him down enough to sleep, I turn on the frozen songs and he stops his fidgeting and fussing and chills right out. I’m pretty pleased to have that tool at my disposal.

AND HE’S FINALLY ON THE MOVE! Still no crawling but he can scoot with the best of ‘em and cruise around the furniture like nobody’s business. He could walk no problem but he has no confidence in his abilities. I can stand him up 2 feet in front of me and he’ll let go and balance and flail his arms but if I ask him to take a step-he just reaches out his arms and falls into my hands. I’m curious if he’s going to get the crawling thing or go straight to walking. I think I’ll be able to let you know in a month the answer to that question.

Happy Good Friday to you all!

Sawyer James 9 months


Even amidst the chaos that is this month, I couldn’t leave out my monthly post about my baby and his changes. There have been some big ones.

He took his first steps last week!! Still not crawling, still not pulling himself up on anything, but by golly if you stand him up he’ll balance and he’ll walk towards you a few steps before just lunging the rest of the way. The big kids were so proud.

He took his first steps walking towards Layla to try to take her toothbrush. It reminded me of Seeley. He took his first steps between her and I as well. I’m so grateful for that little mama. She loves him so well and cares for him so naturally.

Sawyer started eating a lot more this month too. He is no longer satisfied with just Mama’s milk. I still make sure he gets lots of that, but he is also eating lots of soft fruits and veggies and scrambled eggs. It’s good that he’s a fan of eggs. We eat them every morning in one form or another. That’s 8 or 9 dozen every 2 weeks for those keeping track at home.

I’m borrowing a walker from one if my friends and Sawyer has figured it out this month. He follows me from room to room until he gets stuck or facing the wrong direction. I love that he can get around, but can’t get into anything! I know those days will be over so soon, but I’m really soaking them up while they’re here.

Sawyer is my noise box. If he hears Layla squeal or scream, he does it back to her. He loves making monkey sounds, “ah ah ah!” And at the library last week I stood him up next to a shelf of books and he started going “ooooo oooooo” like he was so impressed. I love how noisy he is. We’ll see how much the people on our airplane appreciate his noisiness.

Oh another big deal this month, I’ve started dressing him. Yup, that’s right. Up until now he’s been a pajama only kind of guy but going through clothes to sell at our church’s annual resale I found a bunch of Seeley’s old stuff that will fit him and he’s made the step. Only jammies 75% of the days now instead of full 100%.

Currently we are not sleeping. I’m guessing in a month I’ll be able to report back the growth of at least 3 new teeth, but for now it’s just swollen gums and cranky nights. And I’ve got too much to do this week to nap. Come on teeth!!

It’s so amazing what a month can do. How much different will life look after the next 30 days?




Yesterday Seeley listened to everything I asked. He wasn’t out of control hitting his brother or sister. He wasn’t screaming all day or running circles in the living room.

He was calm and quiet. He took a nap with NO battle, without me laying with him.

What is happening??

My first theory that lasted until 2pm was that he was sick. I kept waiting for him to throw up right in the middle of whatever he was doing. I kept asking him if his stomach felt ok. And I kept pressing my cheek up to his forehead to see if I could notice a fever.

I could not figure out what was happening to my wild and mostly out of control little boy.

And then it hit me. We played outside for about 3 hours Monday and played in a gym for 2 hours yesterday morning.

So my new theory? He had so much pent up energy it was constantly exploding out of his body in aggressive chaotic ways, and once he was given an outlet for all of that testosterone he became my sweet boy again.

True? False? That still remains to be seen. But if it is true? How terrible to be walking around with so much crazy inside of you just dying for a way to get it out. I will be doing my best to provide him with some physical activity every day.


I love that crazy boy.

Steps on the journey


A few weeks ago we had a series of amazing conversations as we ate breakfast and shared my tea in the mornings. Layla asked me to read the story of Jesus dying on the cross. As I started reading, Seeley was eating and half listening but not really engaging. As I said some of the gruesome truth of this story, his ears heard what his mind couldn’t comprehend.


Why did they do that to Jesus? And he listened to my answers. And asked more questions. Layla had her first moment of faith when she was 3 as well. Asking questions about what happens when we die. I think this was Seeley’s first understanding of the Savior’s love for us by taking on death and his first encounter with his rising from the dead and ascending to heaven. We read story after story. He didn’t want to stop, but baby woke up and needed my attention. We read again and again that week. We had so many conversations about God and his sacrificial love for us. He never “prayed the prayer”, but I don’t think he needs to say some magic words. He understood and believed that Jesus died because of his love for us and our sins needing paid for.

What a blessing to be a part of these faith journeys.

**If you need a great children’s Bible, look no further than The Jesus Storybook Bible. AH-mazing! It has made me cry multiple times in it’s story telling of the Father’s love for us and Jesus’ struggle. I wish they would make it bigger with so many more stories in it! On that same note, if you have a good “in between” Bible please let me know. Layla would love more, but couldn’t handle all.

An update on the cutest friends ever


Awhile ago I wrote my first post about these 2 friends but a lot has happened in their little friendship since then. It HAS been almost 7 whole months. So, I thought you needed to hear more of the story.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again (and again and again so I don’t forget), there is no pressure for these sweet friends to be anything more than whatever they are. Right now, they’re best buddies, in 5 years he could be like a cousin to her, or a protective brother. However, I will be documenting their cuteness just in case. A wedding slide show starting with pictures of them together at 1 year old? Come on now.


There have just been little snippets of special friendship here and there. I’ll give a few little examples.

For Christmas the big kids got bunk beds from Grandparents. I put pictures on their walls as my piece of the gift. After nap one day I asked Monkey why a few of his pictures were down. He informed me that he was kissing them and they fell. They were 2 pictures of him and a picture of The Friend.



I’m pretty sure I didn’t purposely put her picture next to the word “love” on his wall. I can’t rule it out completely, however, I don’t remember my frame of mind in that moment. Spunky has the same picture and the same “love” on her wall too. I’m definitely not trying to use subliminal messages.

A little while after Christmas, we had a sleepover with a bunch of kids from our small group and Monkey had The Friend here. They slept in our room, her trying to hold his hand, him thinking she was playing a game and so refusing. They told stories to each other while they laid there. They soaked up their time together.


That was about a month ago, last week Monkey said, randomly, very matter of fact, at dinner, “I just really want to sleep with [The Friend] again.” He cracks me up.


Apparently, awhile back, The Friend was asking her dad about having babies and getting married. She mentioned marrying her sister and then when he explained how that wasn’t a possibility, she wanted to marry him. Again he mentioned how that couldn’t work, so she eventually thought of and landed on marrying Monkey. This story was so cute but not anywhere close to where Monkey is in his thinking. He hasn’t brought up marriage or anything remotely like that, of course he’s an internal processor so he may not chat about those sorts of things. But that night on our drive home from small group, he informed us that he wishes The Friend could live with us forever. We decided that was his equivalent of thinking about marriage.


One more quick story. The Friend often misses both Spunky and Monkey (how did I never realize they rhyme before?), and her mom thought of the kids FaceTiming each other. We set it up and my Monkey carried the iPad around from room to room for hours. The told each other stories, asked each other questions (i.e. what did you do today? what are you having for supper?) and sometimes just sit together. It’s really so sweet.


I love this friendship so much. I’m excited to see how their roles change over the years.

Big Baby 8 months



Big Baby is 8 months today! (And wearing 12 month clothes-so still living up to his nickname) he had become such a trooper when we have errands to run in the mornings and I’m so grateful. Seems like we have an abundance of things that need done on our to-do list and he happily (mostly) goes with the flow. Even napping in the car seat if we keep him out longer than he can handle. This is a new development for him, so I’m still trying to remind myself that I have the option to get more than one thing done in a morning.

This past month has been funny. Last month he had conquered waving, clapping and at the beginning of this month: Blowing kisses. And now, he only waves. The others dropped off the radar. Spunky was like this too. She learned to sing her ABCs and sang them multiple times one day (I even videoed it) then it was MONTHS before she did it again. I wonder why that happens. Interesting.



His main focus of baby work has been in the standing/balancing arena. He has been letting go and standing like a big man for 10-15 seconds and getting so proud. He has a toy he likes to stand beside and just play with all the toys it holds. It can double as a walked but even when he pushes it a little distance away, he just leans over to hold the handle, never really taking a step closer. He looks so uncomfortable leaning over to play, but it must not bother him too much.

He loves to sit with his legs all crazy and spread apart. It’s quite humorous, but still isn’t into the crawling/being on his belly. He mostly tries to pull himself up on things but isn’t quite strong enough nor coordinated enough to manage.


I started sitting him on the potty this month. Not to “train” him really, but just to familiarize him with it. The big kids have to potty before bath time, so Baby sits too. And 4 out of 5 times, he pees. I’ve never done it this early before so I have no basis to put this on, but I’m hoping it means he’ll potty train in his sleep. Hm, I’m not sure that saying works here, but you get my drift.


He has become an eating machine. SO mad if he doesn’t have food when everyone else does. And so far i’d say his favorites are bites of my sweet potato, avocado and banana anything. Even when I’m cooking, it’s like he knows that food is around because he wants to be eating instead of just playing while I cook.

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This face is one of my favorites right now. He does it often. You think a sound will come with it, but it’s usually just a little puff of air. So funny. I love this funny little man…4 months until he’s 1! Ahh, I cannot believe it.




How did I not know how much fun legos are? I’ve always loved puzzles and putting furniture together when we get something new, but I never knew about legos. When we were growing up, my brother always played with them, but it wasn’t something I ever got into. Well, now I think they’re pretty great and Spunky does too.

She got a log cabin lego kit for Christmas and she has been serious about getting them done


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Aside from the tiny pieces that tend to end up everywhere and the choking hazard that said pieces pose to my baby, legos are a great toy.  Seeley is even getting into them since he realized he doesn’t have to follow the directions. He’s my outside the box kid. I don’t get him, but I’m glad for him in my life challenging my one way thinking.

I’m excited to see how her lego collection changes over the years and all she discovers she can do with little pieces that fit together to make something big.

Almost lost my oldest 2



This past week, Spunky got in her head that she was going to walk to one of her friend’s house. Just her and her 3 year old brother. I thought they were playing a game at first, packing their bags, planning strategy, but when they started getting shoes and coats on I asked a question I didn’t think I’d need to ask, “You know you can’t for REAL go to Ari’s house, right?” Turns out, they were not aware of it. Spunky was planning on making Monkey push the pedals while she steered the van. She gave in to the fact that they couldn’t really pull it off and then played pretend “going to Ari’s house” for a few days after that.


They played outside on Tuesday and then again on Wednesday. While they were outside in the front yard on Wednesday, sledding down the hill, I continuously peeked out at them while going about my business. I looked out one time to see them doing whatever it is they were doing, then sat down on the couch by the big windows overlooking the front yard. A few minutes later I peeked out again and didn’t see them. No problem, they like to go to the backyard and slide down the snow-covered slide. I checked back there and they weren’t there either. So I went back to the front with a tad more purpose to my step and went out onto the porch. I saw them crossing onto the next block of our street. AHHHHH!!!!

When I got them back, I found out that indeed they were going to Ari’s house. If they couldn’t drive there, then obviously they could just walk. WOW. I was scared, angry, scared, frustrated and scared. They knew our rule about where their boundaries are, and Spunky chose to go her own way and take the Monkey along with her. Of course there were some consequences based on her decision and we had LOTS of conversations about why that isn’t a good idea and what would happen if I couldn’t find her, but something a friend said has stuck with me.

I called this friend whose parenting I trust so much and told her I just needed to talk because the frustration I had over that incident was not making me a very good Mama at the moment. I shared my story and she was amazed at Spunky’s confidence. “How cool that she feels like she can do that all on her own!” Um, yeah… I guess. I was able to see that, eventually. And once I did, I agreed. Yes, it’s not a good idea for her little 5.5 year old self to take off on her own to walk to a friends house, crossing 2 pretty busy streets, taking along her flighty little brother (I feel my blood pressure rising just writing that sentence out), but how amazing that she has so much confidence in her abilities.

I am excited to see what she will be able to do with confidence like that. Within age appropriate boundaries and my full knowledge of course.

Big Baby-7 months


028Big Baby is 7 months old today! I can’t believe he is closer to a year than to the day he was born! How did that happen?!? But I feel like he has taken so many steps away from infancy and towards baby-hood that there’s no doubting the fact that he’s getting older.

He started sitting up this month. The week of Christmas he went from topping every 30 seconds to totally steady. But he completely hates being on is tummy so I don’t foresee movement any time soon. Which I feel completely fine with since it will be a huge adjustment for all of us when he’s crawling around eating all of the tiny toys we’ve been accumulating.

I was thinking back, and Spunky was crawling at this point and by the end of her 7th month she was taking steps on her own! I just can’t believe that! This boy is so tiny. Him walking just seems hilarious!


Big Baby started waving and clapping this past month. He was frantically waving his arms around one evening so I started clapping my hands while he studied me. Then he started clapping. Oh my goodness. SO cute! His clap is him, very intently and gently, making his hands touch. It’s excellent. He did the same learning scenario with waving. He breathes/moans out a syllable that sounds like “hi” while he does it. My little genius :)

I wonder if he’ll be a signer like Spunky was. She knew SO many signs and loved being able to communicate before her words came. Monkey was the opposite. Totally uninterested in signing until he was about 16 months or so and he wanted things that he couldn’t communicate. Basically, eat and more. The way Big Baby studies and repeats, it seems like he might want to sign more like Spunky.


He’s still just as kissy, but it’s mostly for Travis now. He grabs both of his cheeks, holds him in place and open mouth kisses him for hilarious amounts of time. Most of the time Travis can keep it together. Sometimes he loses it and can’t stop giggling while Baby, straight-faced, presses on in his long smooch. If I get a kiss it’s either brief, or turns into nursing on my lips. He definitely has a soft spot for his Papa.

Baby got his first 2 teeth this month, within a week of each other. Our nights and nap times got rough for a bit, but it has all since gone back to normal. He doesn’t always find comfort in nursing, so in the middle of the night that means bouncing or rocking. I definitely prefer the non-stop nursing to night-time bouncing. But, to each his own, and this one likes the bounce.

He is very interested in food, but only likes pureed stuff. I’ve tried a piece of squished banana and he gags. Or a tiny piece of sweet potato, more gagging. He does like the baby food pouches and holds them all on his own. He probably only eats big people food once a day, if that. Only if he is mad that he’s the only guy not eating. But, I have noticed that he is very distractable with nursing so he usually only nurses one side before he’s ready to get down and play. “Ain’t nobody got time for THAT!” He and I are both thinking that when he refuses to finish his nursing session because that means he’ll be back 45 minutes or so later for another snack. I’m still brainstorming, but I’m thinking not much can be done when there are two other hooligans running wild around the house. The boy is going to be distracted. I see no alternative.


He reaches for us when he wants picked up. It’s amazing. His right hand is always a little more anamated than his left hand. I’m calling it now: he’s a righty. He still growls and screaches and yells. He loves when we play like we’re coming to get him. LOVES the anticipation. This is such a fun age. Let’s be honest, they are all fun.


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