In this post I’m going to get you all caught up on the rest of Ari’s developmental progress in the past month! I covered walking and climbing in my last post.
After we got back from Canada I had a bunch of work days that added up to about 65 hours over seven days, followed by a stretch of seven days off (except for meetings), which I’m almost at the end of now.
When I have a stretch of days off like this, I always think I’m going to have my whole life – especially my house! – in order and every item on my to-do list crossed off by the time I start back at work, then I’m really disappointed when that doesn’t happen. This week I’m especially disappointed! Granted, I started out with a total disaster of dirty laundry, dirty dishes, and no food. But I had hoped to tackle it all right away and then enjoy the results the rest of the time, while maintaining a routine of early bedtimes, yoga in the mornings, and consistent naps for Ari. Usually what happens – and what is in fact happening tonight – is that I stay up late the night before I go back to work to get things cleaned up for Ari’s time with his nanny, then I get mad that I finally got it together and now I have to be gone for 13 hours a day, then I come home after my two or three days and start over with whatever has accumulated while I’ve been working.
I think it’s been especially difficult this week because having a toddler is a whole new phase that I have to adjust to! The house REALLY has to be childproofed better now and I have to figure out new ways of keeping him entertained and safe while I get things done. Taking him out is challenging in new ways, too, obviously. He wants to walk all the time and has become WAY more opinionated about where he goes. Sometimes when I pick him up he kicks his tiny legs and shrieks, or if I put him down when he doesn’t want to be put down or repeatedly move him away from something he wants to explore, he’ll collapse and put his face on the ground and sob. Mini tantrums already! But really if I keep him fed and rested he’s quite a cheerful kid. More on eating and sleep later! Ugh! I will say he seems to be transitioning to one nap at this point. He still seems like he could go to sleep in the late morning but then he doesn’t want to nap again until 4pm or later sometimes, and then he goes to bed super late. So I’m trying to do one longer nap in the middle of the day with an earlier bedtime. Well, that’s the goal anyway.
So, I’m looking at these pictures and realizing it HAS been a pretty fun, PACKED couple of weeks!
But before the pictures – what is Ari doing these days?
Language! Wow, he understands things now! I was actually put to shame by his toy laptop a couple of weeks ago before our Canada trip. He pushed a button on it and the voice said, “Let’s go read a book!” Immediately he spun around and started speed crawling toward his bookshelf saying, “Kuh! Kuh!” until he got there, then he pulled a book off the shelf and brought it to me! It hadn’t actually occurred to me to try saying things like that and giving him a chance to respond that way. So we started giving him more instructions/suggestions, such as “go get your hedgehog,” and then being amazed when he does it.
He knows a few words. One day in late July he was pointing at my eye (well, sticking his finger in my eye) and I would say “eye” and he tried it a few times, saying “eye” pretty clearly. But he hasn’t said it again since then! I can say “where is my eye,” “where is my nose,” “where is my mouth,” and “where are your toes” and he’ll touch my eye, nose, or mouth, or his toes. One day around the same time it sounded like he said “baa” on the sheep page of one of his books, but I haven’t heard that again since. I always ask what the cow or sheep or cat or dog or horse says but he doesn’t respond. Anyway, about a week and a half ago he started saying “up,” which is pretty cute! It’s great when he’s just whining and then he realizes he knows a word so he stops whining and grins and says, “up!” However, he does say it all the time now and sometimes I have to say “no, not right now.” He also likes to repeat “hop” if we use that word when we’re reading to him. He makes a panting noise when we look at one of his books about dogs but doesn’t say “woof.” He has also just finally started to say “mama” with a good “m” sound instead of “vava”! I’m still not sure he knows it means me, though. So, he says “mama” and “dada” but we’re not sure he means us. He says “kuh” for “duck” and “book” and possibly “cup”. He says “guh!” for dog and today I was pretty sure he was trying to say “Andrew.” And he says “up”!
He also loves making sounds and imitating things. He’ll fake a cough and then giggle and when we were in Canada he sneezed and then said, “ah choo!” and laughed. Also, A. was juggling and Ari would take the balls and move his arms up and down while holding onto them.
What else is new? Well, he understands how to fill his cups with water in the bath so he can pour it back out or watch it come out the holes in the cups. Before he would touch the cups to the water and then lift them up but he didn’t know to dip them in order to get the water in them. He throws balls better and better and he and Andrew play pretty well with them. Andrew will let him take the balls out of his mouth and will retrieve them when Ari throws them. He loves music, books, brushing his teeth, and combing his hair.
He has eight teeth – the four bottom front and four top front teeth. I think when he turned one the seventh and eighth teeth were coming in, and now I can’t remember anymore what order they came in except that the canines on top came in before the two top front teeth.
He’s a good eater and lately has been loving the little tomatoes from our garden. I usually cut them in half but he will also put a whole one in his mouth and bite into it. When I’m picking tomatoes he drives me crazy pulling green ones off and shoving them in his mouth, then biting my fingers when I try to get them back out of his mouth. But I’m glad he loves tomatoes and wants to pick them, too!
Okay, on to the pictures!
First, on one of my days off we went to the river with a couple of coworker friends and their sons. Ari just kept going back to the water so I spent a lot of time in their with him. When I was packing for an afternoon at the beach I briefly thought of packing a book then remembered that I was taking my TODDLER to the RIVER. A book! Ha!!
Then he wanted to climb around on his stroller. He kept hooking his leg over the back of it but I don’t have pictures of that because I was putting my phone down to stop him!
This happened pretty much the second he got in the car to go home:
One night I didn’t want the Korean burrito A. got me for dinner, but Ari did:
One day we went to the fountain at Directors’ Park downtown:
This little boat used to be my brother’s. We had taken it to the outdoor swimming pool nearby the day before this fountain trip and a little boy asked if he could play with it and I said sure, and I was shocked by how long he and his friends entertained themselves with it before he brought it back. Then one of his friends hung around us for a long time, playing with Ari and talking to me. He said, “did you know that boat is also a submarine?” And I said, “no, really?” and he said, “yeah, I’ll show you!” and put it under water and said it was a submarine. I was just delighted to see that kids still have imaginations!
This giant chess set is at the same park:
One day we went to Tiny Tots at the library, which is the next step after Book Babies. Lots of fun! Ari kept going back to the basket of books and pulling books out when were supposed to be singing songs. This picture was taken when the toys were out, though.
Then we went to the taco cart together and he was cute:
He found some drums:
We went to a local park for a movie in the park event, but just for the music before the movie. When I played the band’s demo songs at home Ari was clapping to the beat! (He loves to clap along with the songs on his musical toys. He also likes to shake his head back and forth like Stevie Wonder. I think I did that once and he copied me!)
This was that same night at the park. It was a great community event, with food carts and free popcorn, and people brought their dogs! Anyway, we’ve been trying out all the nearby playgrounds.
Here is Ari in his bike seat before we left. A. ordered the cushion for the front of it for when he (Ari, that is) falls asleep.
Here are some pictures from the pool on the day he turned 14 months. He just walks around in there now! It’s two feet deep. He’ll fall over and you have to pull him back up but he doesn’t get upset about it.
Here he is with one of his lift-the-flap books:
Here is Ari one year ago:
And three days ago: