Dr. appointment: I ended up taking him in pretty soon after his birthday because right around that time his eczema got really bad. It had just been on his hands (since 6 months!), and a little on his arms, but after all the excitement and lack of sleep around his birthday, it was all up and down his arms as well as on his back. The doctor gave us a prescription steroid cream that cleared it up, and now his hands are rash free for the first time in 6 months! Other than that the appointment was very uneventful. He was just a few ounces shy of 20 lbs, which stinks because that means we can't turn his car seat forward yet. And I can't remember how tall, but it was somewhere around the 60th percentile. Tall and lean. That is how I would describe him right now. Although people that see him think he looks really big for his age and are surprised when I tell them he's only in the 10th percentile for weight. I think it is that he had big cheeks but the rest of him is small. Takes after his parents.
I held off on getting his shots. First of all because I had to work that night and I wanted to be there when he got all grouchy and needed mommy time. Second because I needed to check to make sure that when he gets the Chickenpox vaccine, he won't be contagious because it is a live vaccine and Jason has never had the Pox. Third, because it is the MMR vaccine that all the autism hype is about and I guess I'm just a bit nervous. They say any time between 12-15 months, so maybe I'll make more toward the later end.
Eating: he is FINALLY eating more solid foods. For a while there I thought he would be eating pureed food till he was 5, but alas, he figured how to use the 8 teeth he has in the front to chew. Actually what he does is fill his mouth like a little chipmunk, then take a few swigs of water and swallows it all mostly whole. I'm still trying new foods, more meats/fish/poultry now. I've come to learn that though he may like things the first time, he might despise it the next, so give it a few days in between and never assume he'll eat the same thing twice. I've gotten tricky with some veggies that he used to love and now he loathes: I puree them and spread them on bread or cook them into a quesadilla. As long as it is on a carb, he'll eat it. His favorite foods include the following:
-Yo Baby yogurt
-Hummus on bread (well, anything spread on bread really)
-Chicken (but only if grilled on the BBQ)
He likes other things, but that is the stuff that he is guaranteed to eat, and will light up when he sees them. He'll get angry at the toaster if it doesn't toast his bread fast enough. Sad but true. Oh, and he'll eat anything as long as it is off my plate. Salmon, broccoli, meatloaf, etc. He's a bit of a scavenger. After eating a full meal he'll come back in the kitchen before I can clean up and eat a stray cheerio or piece of bread off the floor. Then again, he'll put anything at his mouth. I'm constantly telling him, "Not in your mouth!" to things like wood chips at the playground, my makeup brushes, my phone, the grocery list. Oh, speaking of the grocery store, I let him hold an avocado so he could see what it felt like, then turned to grab another one. In the 10 seconds it took me to find a second, he had taken a huge bite out of the one he was holding, peel and all! I'm telling you, if not in his highchair the kid will eat anything.
He still gets a bottle/cup of milk first thing in the morning, before his nap, and before bedtime. I've pretty much stopped breast feeding him, but maybe once a day or every other day he'll get super cranky and the only thing that will calm him is to breastfeed. He loves water at every other time of the day. I've tried half juice, but he didn't like it so I didn't push the matter. No reason to encourage more sugar if he doesn't want it.
Walking: so I thought he wouldn't be walking for a while because right before his birthday he would only take one step very hesitantly, then fall. But around his birthday he started taking more like 2-3. A week later it was 4-5, then across the living room between Jason and I. About 3 weeks after his birthday he was predominantly walking, but still falling a lot. And now about a month later I rarely see him crawl, if ever. He loves walking so much that he starts squealing with delight. Still falls down some, but seems much more balanced and sure of himself. Enough so that when he gets going he is practically running! I have to tell him, "Go slow" because I fear the day he face plants and scratches up his whole front side. He never even wants to hold my hand now, where as before he would throw a tantrum if I wouldn't (probably because that was the only way he could walk). When we're out, he'll go wandering away, then 10 seconds later turn around to make sure I'm still close by. The other day he was walking all around the farmers market with his blanket in his mouth. Everyone thought it was so cute.
Tantrums: When Taylor was younger I thought for sure he was going to take after his sweet, mild tempered father. But somewhere around 10 months he realized he had an opinion and wanted to express it. Now he is seeming a bit more like me in my younger years: stubborn & independent. I think that was the reason he would get so mad before when I wouldn't walk with him. He wanted to be free and walk, and would get mad when I wouldn't have the time to help him. I'm talking throwing his head back, crying, kicking. Sometimes he would be in the kitchen on the tile and start a tantrum and I would have to catch his head and lower him to the ground so he wouldn't smack it, which would indeed lead to more crying. Now, whenever I need to "assist' his head to the ground, I like to say, "Filled with the spirit!" because that's what it reminds me of. Jason and I are in agreement that when he throws his tantrums, we just let him do his thing and ignore it. I'll walk into the kitchen but stay in sight so he doesn't feel abandoned (from what I've read). Usually after a minute of not getting attention with his tantrum he stops. I try to verbalize for him what he is feeling, because a lot of it too is not being able to communicate what he wants or how he feels. "You were angry that you couldn't have my cell phone". I don't know, I hope it works. Boy, we're not even to the terrible 2's yet.
Fun stuff: he is not quite the terror child I just portrayed. It is more when he is tired, but for the most part he is a great, happy kid. It is fun to go out and do stuff together. As it is summer (enjoy it while it lasts in Seattle!), we've been going to different beaches because Taylor LOVES the water. He will walk in and out of the water over and over and get such a kick out of it. Then we collect rocks in his bucket, or scoop with his shovel. We found one beach that is a dog beach on Lake Sammamish, which Taylor loved because of all the dogs running around. I've also taken him to a local pool where we actually do a little more swimming because the water is warmer than the lake. He has a great time kicking around and watching all the other kids. It is great because they put balls and swimming noodles in the shallow end, so he has fun pushing those around. And on the occasion that we get out on our friends boat, he has the greatest time. Usually he falls asleep somewhere during the ride, but also likes to watch Jason on the wake board. Our newest water activity has been the spray park by our house. They have an area that sprays water from the ground at different times. Just when you think you are safe to walk across, it starts up and you get wet. When there aren't a million kids there, Taylor likes to walk around and touch the water.
He is also an avid reader. It is funny how he rotates through a favorite book. Right now it is Moo, Baa, Laa Laa Laa. And with Jason he loves to read Green Eggs and Ham. Counting Kisses is his fave bedtime book, especially when I read the "7 squishy kisses on chubby, yummy knees" and squeeze his little knees. He always laughs. Today we made a fort out of the dining room table, then filled it with a bunch of pillows and his books. It was fun to sit in our secret little place and read together.
Lately his favorite toys have been anything out of the kitchen cupboards. I keep meaning to put the locks on that I bought. "His drawer" is the one with all the Tupperware tops, which usually end up all over the floor. He has also started getting into the pots and pans. He grabs the pot top, then walks around clapping it against his empty hand like a cymbal player in a marching band. Very cute. Sometimes I'll give him a pot and the whisk or a mixing spoon so he can bang around and investigate all the sounds they make.
He and Jason are still enjoying Little Gym together. Taylor is getting more confident and venturing out on his own. He likes to hang from the rings and work on his somersaults. We were considering continuing in the fall, but it is just a bit too expensive, so I'm looking into Kindermusic again. Just a different location because I didn't really like the teacher we had last time.
Sleeping: I think we are still recovering from the poor sleeping related to teeth coming in and a few colds mixed in there are well. There definitely seem to be more good nights than bad. Usually he goes down around 7:30 -8 pm. Somewhere around 10 - 11:30ish he'll wake up and sometimes need the pacifier replaced. Other times he'll settle on his own. On a good night we won't hear from him again till about 6:30 - 7:30 am when he is ready for his bottle. If that first waking is between 5-6:30, he will usually go back to sleep till 7:30 - 8:30 am. On bad nights there are 1-2 other wakings through the night that require the pacifier to be replaced or to be held for a couple minutes. The last few nights have been rough, but I think it is because it has been hot and his room stays really warm. Hopefully soon we'll have 100% 8pm to 7 or 8 am sleeping. :)
At least he naps well, though it is usually only one a day. He will go down 3-4 hours after he wakes up in the morning and sleeps for about 3 hours. If he wakes up early, he'll sometimes go down for a late afternoon nap, but usually only if we're driving around in the car. As long as I can nap when he does for at least 2 hours on the days I work, I'm good for the night. Crazy how one adjusts to sleep deprivation. On the days that I don't work I get SO much done when he is sleeping. It is great!
Well, I think that about sums him up. Though we have are struggles here and there, Taylor is such a joy and I wouldn't trade it for anything. The hugs he gives, and the kisses. Oh yes, I forgot to tell you. He blows kisses! So cute! He also still gives his "I want to make out with you" wide mouth kisses. Still working on closed lip ones. But so precious when out of no where he is laying a big wet one on you. Anyway, life is great and he is precious. Makes us laugh a lot Can't wait for another great year!