Thursday, February 22, 2018

19 Months!

Sweet Eloise Jane, today you are 19 months old!

This past month has brought a LOT more assertion of your independence, and with it, many more full on head-thrashing-throwing-your-body-to the-ground tantrums. You definitely have a fire in that belly of yours coupled with a strong will, and are realizing more and more that you can affect your environment. It's all hands on deck lately!

Here are your official 19 month updates!

How old? 

19 months today!

How big?

You are still in size 6 diapers and pull ups, are a 5.5 shoe, and can fit into 3T pants and 2T tops.


This past month you had your first follow-up eye exam since you got glasses. It was determined that your weaker eye's acuity was still not quite where we want it to be, so we were told we had to start patching your strong eye 2 hours/day. The science behind this is that by patching the stronger eye the brain has no choice but to strengthen its connection to the weaker eye, ideally improving it's vision. The goal is to get the weaker eye to see as close to 20/20 with glasses on as possible.

I was nervous about how you'd do with the patch, and decided to make it a part of the morning routine. I named it your "peek-a-boo," and every morning when you sit on your potty we put it on. Overall you are doing SO well with it! Some days you sneak away and rip everything off, and others you just go with the flow. I'm curious to see at our follow up in April if this is proving helpful.

Here are some photos from your first morning of patching:

And a couple more cute patch photos:


You're not usually hungry for breakfast until close to 8:30, and lately it's been hard to get things made as you are constantly wanting "up! up!" It's also hard to get you to sit down and eat! I've resorted to using your oh so beloved videos as leverage, since you pretty much ALWAYS submit when you know a video is coming. It also helps you keep your patch on during breakfast.

You love to use your fork and eat your food out of bowls. You've also been asserting that you'd prefer to eat at the big table with everyone else, so occasionally I'll let you give that a try.


There is a thing called the "18 month sleep regression," and boy oh boy are we there. Here's what one online developmental site said:

"Basically, you’ll know you’re facing the 18 month sleep regression when your toddler, who was sleeping just fine, thankyouverymuch, is suddenly NOT sleeping so fine. You will probably see shorter and more erratic naps, more bedtime drama, increased night waking, and/or really early-morning wake-ups."

For you, this looks like some serious crying and tantrums when you know it is time to go down for a nap or bed, then even bigger cries when put in your bed. Many times I'll take you back out to snuggle and sing more songs, but inevitably you'll freak out again when it's time to get into your bed. I have to be loving, firm, sneaky, creative, and QUICK, and you'll usually calm within a couple of minutes of my leaving. It's so heartbreaking! Luckily once asleep you STAY asleep, so we aren't having any night wakings.

Your naps have also greatly shortened in length this past week, more often than not lasting only an hour (vs your usual 1.5- 2 hours- please oh please let's return to those SOON!)


You now almost always tell whomever is caring for you when you have poop! Pee, not so much- you've proven to me that you're still perfectly happy to pee on the floor if allowed to play diaper-free. However, if you do have to pee at all and are on your potty, you'll definitely go!

We've started using training pull-ups this past month, but they are still a bit too hard for you to pull on and off by yourself. Truth be told this is actually a blessing in disguise, as I suspect once you figure that out you'll be ripping those pull-ups off constantly!


Your bottom two incisors have cut through, so now you have a full set of teeth (save for the final 2 year molars).


Lately you've had some amazing bed head! The back of your hair is tangled and crazy, and there isn't much I can do about or with it. You also still won't let me "do" your hair, but honestly you really don't have enough up front to do anything with yet. ; )

Rainy day curls:

And this was a hilarious hair morning:



You are really exploding here and expressing yourself more and more with 2-3 word phrases. Things like "Mama, back" for 'Mama is coming/will come back,' "Papa go?" for 'where did Papa go?' and on and on. One of my favorite recent expressions of yours is "Peeky-boo!" for peek-a boo!

Here's a hilarious video of how you currently pronounce "FORK":

Favorite things?

Jewelry and accessories! You LOVE to put on ALL THE NECKLACES. The only bad thing about this is that you'll rip off your glasses to put the necklaces on, lest the necklaces catch on them. You also love to put headbands on your head:

Your sister! You want to be JUST like your big sister. This looks like you insisting on ALSO sitting up at the counter to play (which used to be Iyla's very last "SAFE" zone from you!) and wanting to eat at the big table. You also want to hold hands with her when we pick her up from school, which melts me every.single.time.

The park/playing outside! You LOVE going to the park and being outside at every opportunity. Often when we are driving you'll call out "PARK!" and will shriek with delight when we arrive to one. You are super brave and have proven that no slide is too big for you to go down!

Vidoes! You LOVE your little music videos, and this is often the ONLY way I can convince you to put on your patch or glasses. You'll have ripped things off in full tantrum mode, and I'll ask if you want to watch a video. There will be the slightest pause before you wipe away your tears and happily shriek "YAY!" Then you're all sunshine, rainbows, & cooperation again. You are training us very well!

Music and Swim class! You are loving your music class lately- though you still spend most of the time just staring stone-faced at the teacher, soaking it all in. I know it is getting through though because you are constantly singing the songs at home, and request to listen to the class CD in the car.

You also love swimming, and are getting really brave at jumping in to me and going under water!


You continue to be what we lovingly call "naughty," but not in a mean spirited way. Rather, you are SO curious and SO smart that you just have to explore every inch of your world. You're that kid who should NEVER EVER see how scissors are used- as God forbid what you'll do with that knowledge.

Here are some of your recent "naughty" activities:

*Climbing up on the kitchen table
*Trying to climb up on the bar stools at the kitchen counter
*Pressing all the buttons on the washing machine and dishwasher, causing them to stop or start
*Eating snail shells/crayons/small objects/stickers, etc
*Climbing up on the toilet to press all of the fan buttons
*Putting stickers on windows
*Running away from us when we try to put on your glasses or diaper
*TASTING everything you play with (like jewelry)

New skills?

*Lots of leaping- you can almost get both feet off of the ground
*Running faster
*Speaking in 2- 3 word phrases
*Singing more and more words from your favorite songs
*Recounting past activities (for example, saying "truck, bye" a little while after the garbage truck drives away)

Here are some more photos from your past month!

We love you so much sweet Eloise Jane! Happy 19 months to you.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Christmas 2017

Here's a recap of our Christmas this year (better late than never, right?).

I have to say: Christmas with a 5 year old is a LOT of fun. Iyla was over-the-top excited about every.single.thing this year, and it was so awesome to experience the magic of the season through her eyes.

 Gingerbread house!

We kicked everything off December 1st with the arrival of our Elf on the Shelf. We'd never done this American "tradition" before, but I have to say it was a big hit!

Basically the Elf arrives as a scout from the North Pole and watches it's family's children throughout December to make sure they are on their best behavior.

Hello golden BLACKMAIL tool! Ha.

We used that to our full advantage, often telling Iyla at bedtime that Elfie (her name for him) was watching to see if she went to bed quietly. Each night Elfie would 'fly' to the North Pole to report to Santa, then be back in a new position and location the next morning for Iyla to discover. It was a lot of fun (and a good challenge to BC's and my aging minds to REMEMBER to move that dang thing every night)!

I also got Iyla a chocolate Advent calendar to count down the days to Christmas, and that was a big hit as well! This kid LOVES her chocolate.

There was a lot of talk in the house about IF Santa was REAL. We'd ask Iyla what SHE thought, and usually she'd say she believed. I'd typically say I thought it was a magical story, and would love to think it was real. ; )

We were gifted on December 7th with SNOW in Austin, which is a rarity- and hasn't been seen here in 4 years! Iyla was on Cloud 9, and the following morning the girls and I ventured out to explore. Their favorite part hands down was EATING the snow (luckily it was mostly fresh!). Iyla lamented that there wasn't enough snow for a snowman or snow angels, so we promised that some day we'd take her to a REAL winter.

We took our annual trip to the Driskill Hotel to meet Santa, and Iyla was SO EXCITED! It took about an hour to get our turn with the big guy, and Eloise was losing steam quickly. When it was finally time, there was NO WAY she was going to sit on his lap without me there- so I ended up getting in the official photos with the girls. Iyla requested a stuffed tiger family, and Eloise just stared at him.

Photos before we left for the event:

And of course we had to take some shots with the gorgeous Driskill tree!

A couple of days before we were to head to Houston for Christmas #1 with my family, Iyla fell sick with a fever, sore throat, and cough. She was down for the count for 36 hours, but happily on the day we were to depart was fever-free: so we were off! (and Eloise still would NOT nap in the car!!)

 Sweet sick buddy watching videos. Even sick this kid has style with her sparkly star pants and jewels!

Iyla LOVES going to her Mimi and Grampy's house, where there are always new toys to play with and 4 cats to torture love on.

Here are our traditional photos in front of Mimi and Grampy's mantle:

Eloise awoke from a very late nap, and I quickly threw her into the mix when she was still partly sleep paralyzed:

 Three generations:

The next morning Eloise awoke with a fever, which would continue for 3 days and end up with a case of Croup. Merry Christmas?

Lots of extra snuggles for this one

On the night before Christmas, Iyla dictated a note to Santa and we put out our cookies, carrots, and milk:

The next morning, this is what the girls awoke to:

 Then it was then time for presents!

Later that day we hosted our family for an extended Christmas celebration. And I COOKED! It was a Christmas miracle. ; )


Happy (belated) Holidays, dear readers!