free falling

18 months and Climbing

I was sitting in the chair with my phone while Eddie watched Curious George before bed.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Charlie sneaking behind the coffee table on my left. Of course I don’t think anything of it…other than perhaps in about two minutes I would be changing a dirty diaper…and I keep concentrating on Words With Friends (I mean, what do you do with 3 A’s, 2 I’s, a T and a J?).

Suddenly, there was a curly-haired stage diver dead-weight free-falling onto my lap.

Charlie had climbed up next to me on the table, stood up, and let himself “trust fall” (face forward) at me faster than I could say, “Hey, we don’t climb on tables.”  In fact, I think I only got out the, “hey we d–” part before he was plummeting toward my lap.

“BIRD! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?” I gasped, sure that he was milliseconds away from crying since I was pretty sure his head hit the chair arm and his gut landed squarely on my elbow.

He rolled off me onto the floor in a fit of giggles.

His too-long hair (“He looks like a dirty hippy,” Cort is always saying), was flopped into his eyes and his right foot was not in the footsie part of his jammies. He was sprawled out on his back at my feet, and he was laughing his crazy little head off.

I just stared at him.  O_O

“Eddie. Did you just see that?”

“Yup. Bird is crazy, mom.”

“Cort, did YOU see that?”

“I caught the tail end of it,” he said shaking his head.

“Charles Thomas,” I sternly said as I stood him up to look at me, “we do NOT climb on the furniture like that! It’s dangerous! You could’ve gotten seriously hurt!”

He furrowed his brow and pouted his lips and shook his little finger at me.

“NO NO NO!”

I shook my head. “That’s right. No, no.”

“NOOOO. No. NO!” He said sternly to me.  And with that he bent down, collected his Pipey and his Puppy, and rubbed his eye with the back of his chubby little fist.

Then he turned and flung his face to my lap and made some tired sounds, “mmmm ma ma ma mmmm”.

I scooped him up into my lap where he pressed his face into mine and shook his head.  That is his way of cuddling. Of showing you he wants to hunker down and be your cuddle buddy for a while.

He is my fearless child.

He will climb anything, heights be damned.

He may fall a time or two, but he doesn’t dwell on it by crying, and he the fall doesn’t keep him from doing it again.

He trusts completely that we will catch him, and if we don’t, no big deal.

But if we do, he smiles with his whole face…his whole body even.

And his laugh fills the room.

18 months

The Way You Are Now {Charlie age 16 months}

2013-06-23 17.31.05

You are 16 months old.

Today Daddy was holding you and your legs hung down past his arm almost to his belly button. Last week the doctor said you are now 25 pounds and almost 34 inches tall.

You are no longer my baby.

You run at top speed through the house swinging just the one arm with your one little fist all balled up like you are cranking yourself along.  And you do this running with a little prance that makes the floppy curls on your head bounce all over the place.

Unless they are shellacked down with syrup from that morning’s breakfast.

2013-06-23 13.47.19

You are 16 months.

It’s hard to get a non-blurry picture of you these days.  You are in constant movement.

Except when you’re not.  But in those moments, you are usually glued to my side or my lap or in a hiding place all your own.

Or you’re thoughtfully in your own world figuring out a toy or something you’re not supposed to be touching.

2013-06-28 16.27.04

You are 16 months.

I try not to compare you to your brother, and really, there is no comparison.  You two are just so different. I’d heard it said that just because you have one child, you learn to be a mom all over again with the second.

That is true.

All the things that comforted Eddie are not the things that comfort you (except that dang pacifier.  Both of you had/have a mad love affair with the Pipey).

And all the things that did nothing to comfort Eddie are like home to you.

Where Eddie has never had an ounce of sit in him, you can chill in a chair or on a lap or in a baby carrier forever without complaint.  Your older brother has to do ALL THE THINGS. You like to watch all the things and decide to maybe do the most ridiculous things that you will probably get hurt doing, yet you don’t care because LOOK AT YOU DOING ALL THE THINGS!

2013-07-12 12.58.48

You are 16 months old.

We chose your middle name wisely, Charles Thomas.  You are like your Grandpa Tom (my dad) in ways that make me giggle all the time.

The biggest similarity though is the way you putz around outside.

Most kids find toys and play with them. You walk around like you have a never-ending To Do List out there.  You are a gatherer and an organizer.  You find things (plastic golf clubs, pinwheels, sidewalk chalk, bubble wands, sticks) and you try to carry all the things around.  You even have a little net and wagon that you will put things in to transport them around the yard.

I could sit and watch your little process all day.

2013-07-08 08.31.56

You are 16 months old.

You like to do your own thing. Run wild to the beat of your own drum.  Hide when you want to be alone…or silly.

Your dancing brings joy to anyone who gets to see you do it. Twirls and fist pumping and clapping and giggles and knee bends and head shaking. You love music. Your brother loves music. Yet it seems to be a different kind of love.  I can’t really explain it other than it’s a different type of joy I see come out of you. Both of you are joyful when music is played, but it’s different. Wonderful.

2013-06-09 11.18.56

You are my serious one.

It’s not that you are unhappy…far from that. You are one of the most joy-filled children ever, but you can be quiet…serious…thoughtful…contemplative.

You “take it all in” as your Granny has said.  She sees a lot of your daddy in you.  I do too.

You are the observer.  The watcher.  You pay close attention to things that Eddie never did. I think it’s why your fine motor skills developed so quickly (you were stacking blocks with just one hand before you were a year old) and why you started climbing so early.  It’s why you learn to shake your head and stomp your feet just like your brother.

And it’s why you know what “no” means but choose to ignore that meaning.

In fact, just this weekend you brought me the remote control and my phone all the while repeating “no, no, no, no,” quite matter-of-factly.

You know what you’re not supposed to do. You just don’t care much.

2013-06-27 09.12.11

You are 16 months old.

You have found your voice.  You know what you want (milk, snack, my phone) and you know what you do not want (to hear the word “no”).

You have learned by watching Eddie that the fridge is where the milk comes from and you walk up to it, throw your Pipey out of your mouth, and grunt “uhhhh!  UHHHH!!!” while standing there.

You have developed what Emily calls a BossyFinger. We are not sure if you are bossing, requesting, or just pointing things our for our entertainment/general knowledge, but you do it a LOT lately.

You hate when we say “no” or when we redirect you. You are our tantrum thrower, but it’s sort of funny. You stamp your feet and cry a little bit.  Sometimes you’ll even through yourself on the ground onto your back. But it’s always over in a matter of minutes. And then you’re onto the next thing.

2013-07-13 12.48.39

You are 16 months old.

At this age Eddie had no words.  He signed to us, but did not speak. And he did not say “Momma” until he was nearly 2.5 years old.

You are already spilling with words.  Your first word was “Hi”, but a close second was “Momma”.  Granted it was more like, “muh muh muh…” and it usually involved you clinging to my legs, but I’ll take it.

You say “no” a LOT lately and you are trying so hard to duplicate animal  noises when we go through them (although you already knew what the dinosaur says for about six months now…RAWRRRR!!!”

You have also started to say “buh bye” and doing the cutest little wave.

This weekend I got you to say “nose” (nuhz) and “toes” (tuhz”) when we pointed them out.  You know where your tummy and button and eyes are too, but you haven’t started saying those yet.

2013-07-04 16.03.09

You are 16 months old.

You are my sweetie boy.  You want cuddles and to be held even though you are incredibly independent. After watching things, you can totally toddle in and feel confident, but when you are tired or just need a moment with mommy, you have no qualms about snuggling up next to me or backing up into my lap for a quick sit.

You are a mommy’s boy through and through and I will take it.

Even when it means you wake up in the night and need me as a buddy for a few hours.

Oh how I wish to be your buddy for always.

2013-06-13 17.07.40

You are 16 months.

You have the best laugh I have ever heard in my entire life.

I am not sure where it comes from but it’s a very deep chuckle…it borders on crazy dude laughing and your dad and I love it.  Eddie loves to make you do it.

When the giggling gets too much for even the chuckle it turns into squeals.

And then as you gasp for breath, you are known to put your face against my face and make a kissy noise.  Or take out your Pipey and plant a big one right on my mouth.

2013-06-26 08.07.53

You are 16 months old.

And you want to be big.

But I want you to stay small.

Because even though you are getting tall and Big Boy-ish, you are still mostly baby.

My baby.

two quick

Dear Charlie…

I don’t remember any two months of my life going by this quickly.

Not even Eddie’s first two months.

In fact, you still seem so little to me, Charlie.  I have to keep looking back at pictures of Eddie at this age to see if he was wearing what I think you will fit into, or doing the things you’re doing, or using the stuff you’re using.

Because it just doesn’t seem possible that you are anything but that tiny little floppy newborn that came home with us two months ago.

But your definitely NOT floppy anymore.  More like bobbley.

You can hold your head up between a 45 and 90 degree angle when you do tummy time on your boppy.

But truth be told, you prefer that I “stand you up” because you recently found your feet, and you have a better view that way.

And when I do this?  You lock those little legs, straighten that back up, and hold your head completely still for a few seconds before it wobbles a bit.

You are so strong!

Your 2-month appointment is not until Friday, but you still have that annoying plugged tear duct.  We might have to take you to an optometrist to have it unclogged…I’m crossing my fingers that the doc thinks it will do it on it’s own.

Your mystery “butt bump” is pretty much gone.  Sometimes we will see it inflame a little, but it’s mostly not even noticeable.  I hope to have this confirmed with the doc too, so everyone can stop worrying about it.

Your personality is sprouting and growing like crazy.

Although you sleep so much!

I mean, I know babies sleep a lot, but I have to ask the internet daily if babies really sleep this much.  (I am assured, yes, yes they do).

But when you are awake, you crack me right up.

You are starting to coo and “talk” all the time.  I like to think you’re going to be a story-teller like your mom (and brother), but we’ll see.  You are pretty chill like your dad, so maybe you’ll keep your stories until someone asks about them, like he does.

You’ve started actually interacting when you are awake too.

You like like to look into our faces (while we look back at you.  You get mad if you feel we may be ignoring you for whatever is on TV or our computer screens) and react to our facial expressions.

Your smile slays me.  Usually it’s in response to me smiling at you, but every now and then you smile out of nowhere like you just thought of something hilarious that you’re probably not going to share…or your laughing at me.  It’s one of those things.

Oh and you have found your hands!

Just this week you have started concentrating on those things at the ends of your arms and how you can move them at will. Which usually means putting them together in front of you and then bringing them right up to your mouth to lick and suck on.

You are a very scheduled little guy.  We didn’t have to try very hard either. You came home as an “eat every three hours and sleep the rest of the time” kind of guy and we are following your lead with changes you need.

Right now you like to eat 4 or 5oz, poop, play/chat, and then promptly fall asleep for anywhere from 2-4 hours at a stretch.

There are rarely times when you are just mad with no reason.

You love being moved around the house to look at “new” surroundings, so I put you in your bounce seat and take you with me while I do laundry or other tasks.

Speaking of your bounce seat, you love it.

In fact, you will even nap in it.

Another sure fire way to get you to sleep is put you in the Moby.

I love how close you and I are.

You love to be on me or near me at all times.

If I have been gone, the minute I get back, you turn to my voice.

If you are having a hard time calming down, I can always help by putting my face close to yours and quietly “shh shh shh-ing” near your ear.  You’ll immediately turn into me, so our faces touch, and quiet down and doze off.

If you had a choice to sleep on/near me or anywhere else in the whole world? You would pick me 11 of 10 times.

All this is so new to me.

And it’s going by way too fast for my liking.

It is SO fun being your mom because I get to watch you do this every day!

Can’t see the video?  Click here.

I love you, my Charlie Bird…
Mommy

************

Oh, and I have a WINNER for the Self-care package…it’s….

YAY KIM!!!  I emailed you and you have 48 hours to get back to me before I choose a new winner.

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