Todd Family Blog

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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Month 11, Part 3 - Christmas in Florida!

Christmas in Florida and Levi's first trip to see Nanny and Papa!  Levi and I were able to take an extra long vacation, almost two weeks, and Brad was able to join for the second week.  This meant flying by myself with Levi on the way down.  (Both of us in one seat!  I woke up in the middle of the night wondering how I was going to keep my wiggly boy in one tiny airplane seat for two flights!)  He was an angle though, and even slept the entire second flight.  Thank you, Lord.

Obviously, Levi's wheeling carryon from Nanny and Papa (which I so stylishly wore as a backpack) was a huge hit.

Thank you, thank you to the kind flight attendant who found us a free seat for Levi on the second flight.  I was struggling to hold his very tall body on my lap while he slept!

Levi loves Nanny and Papa's big tub!  We weren't sure how this was going to go, but it was one of his favorite parts of every day.

Well, he loves it until I tell him  he absolutely can't stand up in it.  (Very slippery.)  Not happy about that instruction at all.

Levi loved the beginning of our visit, but missed Dada a lot.  This picture was after picking Brad up at the airport.  Levi immediately fell asleep using Brad's sweater as a pillow.  He looked quite content to have us all together again.

Thank you Nanny and Papa for having a basketball hoop!

This trip was Levi's first experience with a "Big Boy Bed"!  It went well, though was beyond strange to see him stagger out of his room on his own now and then.  What little boy doesn't want a race car bed though?

Levi's first walk to the beach and first time seeing the ocean!  Going up the ramp with Papa...

He started out a bit too brave for his own good, as you'll see in the video.  The rest of the visit he stayed very close or in my arms while at the beach.  A healthy respect.

First moments and hence the reason he learned his lesson....

It was unseasonably warm the first week and we went to the pool four times.  Levi was ready for anything with his getup.  

Christmas Eve.  Levi wore his first tie and vest and then spent the whole service in the "Cry Room" with me.  I decided the "Cry Room" is really more like the "Wiggle/Play/Babble/Eat Room" and it was packed with little wigglers, all dressed up, like us.

Dinner at the club.  Levi was a perfect little gentleman.  Brad and Jenny came in that day and it was very exciting to have the whole family together for the first time ever.

Levi's first Christmas morning was much like his first birthday, if you remember that picture.  As always, he wasn't sleeping well, and this particular morning he had been up since 4:30.  (Thank you, molars.)  By the time we started opening presents at 10:00 a.m. he wasn't interested in anything but a nap.

We tried valiantly to get through some Santa presents (in the Santa paper!) first.  Still tearstained, Levi was nevertheless pleased to see a Wonder Pets book.

After an early two hour nap (the prefect amount of time for us to open our grownup presents), Levi was able to enjoy the wonderful gifts from Nanny, Papa and Aunt Jenny.

Here we go....This is when I know my Dad grew up in Kentucky.  A cork gun for Levi, who was obviously well-pleased.

Aunt Jenny found a truly wonderful and special present during her time in Berlin this fall.  When we were little we played with a very similar toy of my Grandma's (also Nanny!).  And our favorite movie was Babes in Toyland.  Jenny found this nostalgic toy which is also a music box playing Toyland.  Levi was enthralled, especially since he always wants to know how things work.  The best part of this video is towards the end when he quickly looks back to see if it twirls when he isn't looking.  He still plays with it every day here at home.

Watching out the window with Dada on the flight home.  So nice to all be together with two laps to share!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Month 11 with Levi, Part 2 - Everything before Christmas!

When I look at all the pictures from this month I think, "No wonder everyone is always exhausted in December!"  As I mentioned in my Month 10 post, Levi has officially become a little boy.  Month 11 saw more and more evidence of that.  First of all, what is it with boys and trains/trucks!?  Goodness knows, this is not something I introduced on purpose.  And Levi didn't watch any TV or read books before coming home to us, so it can't be early association with boy activities vs. girl activities.  Once he got home he was practicing the Verdi Requiem with me, reading books and watching shows primarily about animals, and Brad certainly isn't working on cars in his down time.  It is truly amazing how they latch on to these things. The bigger the truck he sees on the road, the louder he screams.  Mom and Dad went ahead and got him the requisite train table since he loves it at Barnes and Noble, the Children's Museum, and every library.  (And he's still never even seen the Thomas the Train cartoon!  Just loves trains anyway.)  So, yes, definitely a little boy instead of a baby.

More firsts: Loves pointing to toes and ears any time he hears them mentioned; has no problem learning sounds: Grrr, Buzz, Vroom, Quack (just still refuses to say most words - sigh); Can point to each of our dogs in pictures by name; Now attempts to do rhythmic or tonal patterns after every music class song we listen to, and has even done some for the teacher in class!; Consistently finds middle C (somewhat exactly, haha) on the piano; Opened the car door from the inside - oh no; Eating more on his own with utensils; Pointing, pointing, pointing at everything; Obsessive sometimes about cleaning up - books need to be stacked after being read, bath toys put in their holder, etc.

Sleep?  Same old, same old.  Enjoying my "No Hope" mentality and starting to treasure the fact that he cuddles with me still.  Hard to be mad when the only thing that will make him feel better is winding his little arms as tightly around my neck as possible.  Now, when he starts kicking me in the head or climbing out of bed at 2, 3, 5:00 a.m., etc. I have to take my deep breaths and count my wonderful blessings (which really isn't that hard either).  So, turns out we weren't ever going to change his sleep, but I was going to have to change my mindset.  Go figure.  Note to self....

The best thing about having the world's biggest Children's Museum 30 minutes away?  It keeps growing with him.  I still haven't seen the whole thing and every time we go (about once/week) he tries out something new.  The Indy race care is his latest obsession.  (Shocking, I know.)

And a whole play area of rubber mulch.  Genius.

First time playing with the boats/water in the Science Works.

The atrium all decked out for the holidays with the famous Yule Slide.  (No, we didn't do it this year.)

Playing with our dear friends, Elias and Isaiah.  They all love the train displays and the actual tool car you can get in.  There is a video outside the window, so it looks like you are moving.

Fun downtown at the Eiteljorg's amazing annual Jingle Rails exhibit.  More trains!  Levi got to go twice - once with us and once with Nana and Grandpa, lucky boy.

And I didn't even know they have a whole kids' section downstairs!  Maybe we'll be frequenting that more this year too.

As you can imagine, when Levi is attached to something - like his baby bathtub and bath time in general - we take change very slowly around our house.  I figure, he's been through more than I probably will experience in my lifetime, so let's hang on to the baby bathtub as long as we need to.  But this day, totally spontaneously, he put a leg outside of it.  There was no turning back.  He, himself, picked up the baby bathtub and pushed it out of the way against the back wall.  Kind of a bittersweet moment, actually.  An era had ended.

(Naked baby butt!  Sorry, future teenage Levi!)

Great thing about the 21st Century is you always have a camera ready to capture the little moments.

Fun around the house.....

Levi LOVES riding on our backs, thanks to a funny song from music class.  (Sung to a vaguely Middle Eastern tune: "I like riding...riding on the back...riding on the bay of a Mommy yak....")
But the best thing about this picture is that bird on the TV.  What!?

He likes to get in his chair with a book now and then.  Here he is pointing to the letters for "Levi" in an inscription!  (Thanks, Browns!)

Reading Grouchy Ladybug with Grandpa

Fun with Dada

Every kid loves a box.  Not sure Levi realizes how big he has become though.

A precious visit from our dear friend, Amanda Crisel.  She, Nate and their new babe, James, now live in Tokyo!  We miss them so much, and it was a very special moment to have our boys together for the first time.

Chair picture, Month 11.  His vest and tie from Christmas Eve (next post!).  Truly, my little man.

This game was big this month.  Levi thought it was hilarious to put the tie of a sweatshirt hood, a necklace, something, in our mouths, we would then make a funny face and spit it out.  Hilarity ensued.

Levi has a very unique wave that he has done for a long time now.  He tucks a hand under his chin and gives the cutest little look.  He now waves in a more normal way now and then, but this is still his go-to.  I had to get it on video.  You know one day it will disappear for good.