I'm writing this letter to both of you because, quite frankly, if I spend time right now writing two different letters, the house will never get picked up and the laundry will never get done. Also, I hope that this letter will give you some insight into what our world is like... right now... as a family of four. Enjoy.
Happy Cinco de Mayo!!! So much has changed in the last year. Last year, Millie was not even a bun in the oven. And Hazel was just one day away from being weaned from the boob. Last year, we had a gaping hole in the floor, with no plans of fixing it and I was not sure I wanted another baby because... MAN, is this HARD!!!
Fast forward 12 months and our family of three is now a complete family of four and our lives which were in total chaos for the first six months of Hazel's life, are now running like a well-oiled machine, and we can't imagine life without our two little girls.
These days, Hazel, you are a happy (unless you're sick) 18-month-old who likes to jabber on about nothing in particular. And occasionally, you actually throw out a word that Mommy and Daddy recognize. For instance, a couple of weeks ago I took you shopping and you were such a doll during the trip that when we got to the check out line and you pointed at a balloon and said "ball"... well, I caved and spent the $3 on it. And made your day. Daddy then made your day further when he taught you how to hit him on the head with the balloon (it's one that's on a stick). And you started to say "boo", which is Hazel-speak for TOTALLY AWESOME BALLOON THAT I GET TO HIT DADDY ON THE HEAD WITH... HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
You also imitate certain words that you hear us say a lot.
Like boogie. We say boogie all the time as we're doing booger removal from your nose. Which actually includes me grabbing your boogers with tweezers, pulling it out and showing it to her while saying "Boogie!" This is the only way you don't throw a fit while we try to tend to the amazing amount of boogers in your nose. You're also experimenting with saying things like "toast", "diaper", "cheese", "cracker", "ball", "two", "baby", "tree", "bird", "woof", "dog" and "dada". Often, when you're asking where Daddy is, you use your modified sign language for him... which is pointing at your head with a look of confusion on her face. You also know the sign for Grandpa and recognizes when I say Grandpa. The other day, you were looking at a book with a tractor in it and I told you that Grandpa drives a tractor. You kept pointing at the tractor and then doing the sign for Grandpa. Wait until I blow your mind when we see a school bus. Wait! Grandpa drives a tractor AND a bus???? I'm not sure you'll be able to comprehend exactly that, but I know you'll make the sign every time you sees one or the other.
You have also discovered the awesome world of Mommy's bathroom. There you get to practice flushing the toilet. And you get to try and grab whatever Mommy has left near the edge of the counter. And when you inevitably snag something (say, foundation, mascara, hairspray) you take off with it. It's like you KNOW that it's the one thing Mommy hasn't used yet that morning and will make a trade of cookies for. At 8 a.m.
Smart little girl. Almost proud of you for manipulating the situation.
Aunt KC also taught you to pick dandylions and there's not one of those weeds that you walk by without picking it and trying to stick it in your ear. Apparently, you also do this at day care, much to the delight of the teachers. I'm absolutely happy with this as I'd like to teach you at a young age to pick weeds, rather than Mommy's tulips. See how well it's going?
You have also fallen in love with mousse. And will come into the bathroom, point at the can and say "moosh" and hold out your hand, expecting the soft, foamy stuff. Luckily, you don't try to eat it, but you sure do love to mush it in your hands and then rub it in your hair like I taught you to.
You're really into her sunglasses these days, too. You insist on them whenever you see me put on my glasses. And you wore them to school today. I can't tell you how hard I laughed as you sat down at the table for breakfast in your sunglasses and jacket on while looking at the other kids as if to say: YOU ONLY WISH YOU COOL ENOUGH TO WEAR SUNGLASSES AT BREAKFAST.
Today they officially moved you down to the 18-24 month old room. I had been told it would be a little while before you moved down... which was heartening to me as I love the ladies in the 12-18 month old room. And it's easier to drop you off as it's right next to Millie's room. And the other room is on the other side of the building, down two flights of stairs and... yea, sometimes you want to do the stairs yourself. And other times you want me to carry you down. Not a problem... if I weren't also carrying Millie's car seat. But, I'm sure you'll have a good time down there with your friends Jaxton, Quincy and Emmy. As long as Jaxton stops kissing on you and giving Daddy a heart attack.
Millie, you continue to be a rock star baby. My goodness are you easy. You love to smile and make faces at me after I feed you, although you're still not a fan of cuddling. That's probably the hardest thing for me.... wanting to cuddle and knowing that my 10-week-old wants nothing of the sort. You just want to look at people. Look them in the eye to see if they''re good people or not. You have no need to look at what's going on behind my back... you want to face the world. What a cool thing! But it's a huge bummer to not to get to snuggle with your baby.
You still like being swaddled and sleeping with your binkie. You've been throwing down some awesome overnighters. Just the other night, you slept from 7:45-4:15! And you've done at least 6 hours in-a-row for the last week or so. This after you hadn't slept more than 3 hours at a time your entire life. It's like all of the sudden you decided she would take it easy on me, since you somehow knew I was going back to work and needed some sleep!
You never cry. Unless you're hungry or wet. And you love to watch your big sister running around. I never have to worry about you because you're is one thing that Hazel rarely was: content. You just enjoys... being. And you have transitioned to day care extremely well. I never would have considered leaving Hazel for Daddy to deal with on his own at night at 2 months. But, with my little Chilly Millie, I have a standing Wednesday night date with my girlfriend Jodi. And Daddy has a standing Thursday night drama - I mean poker - club.
Lately, you have been going to sleep around 8. Which means we have the evening to ourselves. I can't believe it only took a couple of months for that to happen. I mean, it felt like FOREVER while we were going through it... but it wasn't that bad even then!
The one thing you will not tolerate? Taking a bottle from me. It's like you know... Hey! You're the milk lady! GET THIS BOTTLE OUT OF MY FACE AND WHIP 'EM OUT! Daddy and the ladies at day care are the only ones you'll take a bottle from. Luckily, I've been able to keep my milk supply up.
Mostly by drinking a beer every day. Yep. I'm THAT Mommy. At least, that's what I'm hoping is causing the turnaround in milk supply. It's either that or the $70/week prescription that I have to buy. Yep... the big benefit of breastfeeding is that it's free. Not for me, though.
I have to pay.
I can't wait until the day that both of you girls are running around. Your head and neck are so strong already. It won't be long before we can start putting you in the little bumbo seat. And possibly jump-a-roo. I give it another month.
The ladies at day care continue to gush over both of your. It makes me feel better knowing that my daughters... the most important people in my world... are taken care of and loved while I'm at work.
The Bean's first day at "school". Her big sister is excited for her!
I love both of you girls more than you'll ever know. I hope that I'm the Mommy you deserve... and the Mommy that deserves you both.