Sunday, May 30, 2010

Ryan's latest...

As mentioned in my previous post, Ryan turned 18 months on the 9th of May.

  He is growing into quite the mischievous child.  He is into everything, and I mean everything!  No really.  EVERYTHING!  Just when I've cleaned up one spill/mess/disaster, he's started (or sometimes finished) another one.  The other night, I'd just gotten him out of the bath when my phone rang.  I left him on my bed and ran to the kitchen to answer it, only to come back to my room 4 minutes later to Ryan rubbing an entire tub of Vaseline all over himself, his towel, and the blanket he was sitting on.  This is only one of MANY stories where Ryan has explored his limits. 

His favorite spot to raid is the pantry.  And half the time it's to dump whatever box of whatever onto the floor and then giggle at his success.  He climbs anything he can, whether it be the coffee table, entertainment center, toilet, piano, dishwasher, dining room table or computer desk.  It's not uncommon for me to walk into the kitchen to find him standing on the table swinging the dining room light above.  He is such a stinker.

Here's my sweet boy after waking from a nap a week or so ago. I love how happy he is after his naps. I always know he's awake when I hear him cheerfully babbling to himself in his crib.

Here are a few recent updates/milestones that I've managed to jot down.

February 19th (15 months) - yes I'm going back this far:
Ryan threw a box of Mac n' Cheese into the toilet.  Okay, maybe this isn't a milestone, but it is definitely something we'll laugh about in ten years!  -AND- it also marks the first of many other dropping-random-objects-into-the-toilet events.

February 28th (15 1/2 months):
Ryan flipped out of his crib.  Apparently his attempts to get out were successful, but perhaps, not exactly how he'd planned it.  He was fine, and actually hasn't even attempted to escape his crib since (thank goodness).  Even if he thought he was ready for a big boy bed now, I'm definitely NOT!

March 22nd (16 1/2 months):
Ryan started the washing machine all by himself.  That morning, just out of the blue, I heard what sounded like water running.  When I got to the laundry room, there stood Ryan, on a stool, looking oh so proud of himself.  Our washer really isn't that user-friendly, so I'm honestly amazed that he knew just which buttons to push to get that thing going.

March 28th (16 1/2 months):
Ryan said his first word: "nu-nah-nu" (banana).  I suppose that's appropriate since it's one of the only things he's consistently willing to eat.  Since then he's said, "juu!" (juice).  He also says "daa-doo" after I give him something, which we have interpreted as, "thank you".  Actually, come to think of it, he's been saying that for months, so for all I know "thank you" was his first word, not "banana".  Either way.  As of May 9th, those were about the only 3 words he uttered, other than "Mama" and "Dada".  But since then he's made a much greater effort to expand his vocabulary.  On several Sundays leading up to his first day in nursery, we spent lots of time roaming the halls because he wouldn't sit still or be happy any other way.  Naturally, as there were several pictures of Jesus on the walls, we'd often stop and look at them, and I'd always make it a point to tell Ryan who was in each picture.  A couple weekends ago, we were up to Neil's sister's house, and there was a picture of Jesus on the wall.  At one point I was carrying Ryan around, and, just as we'd done hundreds of times before at church, I stopped and pointed out the picture to Ryan.  When I said, "That's Jesus!", Ryan replied, "JeSEUS!", really emphasizing the "SEUS!"  It was hilarious, and darling, of course.  He did it a couple more times before we left on Sunday.  I really can't think of any other specific words he's said, but he's getting to the point now where we'll say, "Ryan, say....", and he'll then attempt to say it.  Even if it comes out an entirely different sounding word, the tone and number of syllables are usually right on.  So the desire is finally there, and I'm sure in no time he'll be talking up a storm.  Especially if he's anything like his sister.

April 12th (17 months):
Noticed Ryan's 2 top molars.  Don't know the exact date they broke through, but I would imagine it was that week prior, based on some of the long nights we'd had. 

May 2nd (17 3/4 months):
Noticed Ryan's 2 bottom molars.  Again, not sure of the exact date they actually broke through.  But that now makes 12 teeth!

Somewhere around the end of April/beginning of May:
Ryan started walking up the stairs.  He still crawls up a fair amount of the time, but more often than not, he attempts the climb on foot now.  It's so cute, because he's still so petite. 

Some of Ryan's current favorite things include:Brushing his teeth, drinking from a regular cup - not a bottle or sippy, taking a bath, "brushing" his hair (I think it gives him a boost his ego to pretend he has something to brush), going down the slide tummy first, trying on daddy's, mommy's and Chloe's shoes...

...fruit snacks, the piano, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Chloe's red tricycle, which he'll be big enough for in no time.  Since Chloe has upgraded to a bike with training wheels, I guess Ryan has automatically inherited the tricycle.  It'll be fun when he is tall enough to actually ride it around.

Ryan can, among other things:
Locate several of his body parts, including head, hair, nose, mouth, teeth, ears, cheeks, chin and belly button.  He also loves looking at and poking other peoples' belly buttons.  They absolutely fascinate him.

Give hugs, kisses, head bonks, body slams, you name it.  He has also been attempting to jump.  Ever since he saw a video of his cousin, Grant do it, he's been determined to master this new trick himself! In addition, he folds his arms for prayers, and even sometimes beats us to it when we've just sat down at the table to eat a meal. See the picture below of him showing off this fun (and precious) skill.

Take orders, and do exactly what we tell him to.  He may not be much of a talker just yet, but he sure understands a lot.
Eat with a fork, and even attempts to use a knife when we let him.  We determined months ago that he is left handed.  See him drawing in the picture below.  So funny since neither Neil, Chloe or I are.

Ryan desperately needs a haircut.

As you can see, he is nearly bald on top of his head, but has a good inch in length growing around the side of his head. We call him mullet boy. He really likes it. I think I am hesitating the first haircut for 2 reasons. 1 - I know that it will automatically transform him from a baby into a little boy, and I'm not sure I'm ready for that; and 2 - I'm afraid that either my lack of experience with haircutting or his unwillingness to hold still will result in a disaster. I suppose there isn't much there so even if I did mess it up you'd hardly be able to tell. Still, I've chosen to put it off for another couple of days (or weeks).

This sweet boy might be a stinker, but he sure is lovable, and I can't imagine life without him.  I am so head over heels in love with my Ryan, and so grateful that I get to be his mommy.  Happy 18 month birthday, my boy (a couple weeks late)! 

Monday, May 24, 2010

Just because...

...I love this picture.

...And these children.

Monday, May 10, 2010

3 Reasons to Celebrate

Yesterday celebrated many things. 

#1 - My brother-in-law, Jeff's birthday. 
{Allison, Jeff and Grant - Salt Lake Temple grounds; October 2009}

Jeff is currently deployed, and expected to come home within the next month, last I heard.  We hope, despite the circumstances and lack of loved ones nearby, that his birthday was special.  We love you, Jeff!

#2 - Ryan's 18 month birthday, which means..... drum roll please.....


Given the nature of Neil's and my callings, there have been a handful of Sundays we've had to take Ryan to the Nursery.  He has done amazingly well, and yesterday was no different.  It simply marked his first official day on the roll.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do with myself.  I've gotten so used to chasing him around during Primary.  It will be a nice break, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little bit sad.    

Making magic with play dough.

Scopin' things out.

Is this handsome, chubby cheeked, blue eyed boy of mine really 18 months?  It just can't be!

 And last, but not least... #3 - Mother's Day!  What a privilege it is to be a woman!  And what a privilege it is to be a mother!  I cannot think of a greater honor than to bring a child into the world, raise, teach, love, nurture, learn from, and enjoy all the blessings of that joyful challenge.  I have yet to witness a miracle more grand and significant than motherhood. 

I'm grateful for the women in my life who have inspired and helped me to see what a sacred and divine role womanhood is, and who have molded me into the woman and mother I am today.  My mom, whose Christ-like love surpasses all.   My mother-in-law, whose influence has produced hard-working children with healthy habits, the oldest of whom I call "husband".  My grandmothers, whose experiences have provided perspective and wisdom that I otherwise wouldn't know.  My aunts and sisters-in-law, who each bring unique gifts and attributes to the table.  My dearest friends, who have been sisters to me, mothers to my children, and who have strengthened and lifted me in times of need.  The women of the Church, whose faith and perseverance simply astonish me.

{Hannah of the Old Testament with her long awaited son, Samuel.}

Gordon B. Hinckley said,

“Woman is God’s supreme creation. Only after the earth had been formed, after the day had been separated from the night, after the waters had been divided from the land, after vegetation and animal life had been created, and after man had been placed on the earth, was woman created; and only then was the work pronounced complete and good.

Of all the creations of the Almighty, there is none more beautiful, none more inspiring than a lovely daughter of God who walks in virtue with an understanding of why she should do so, who honors and respects her body as a thing sacred and divine, who cultivates her mind and constantly enlarges the horizon of her understanding, who nurtures her spirit with everlasting truth.”

Beautifully said, and so true.

I am grateful for these two, who made me a mommy. 

They make me crazy, but there's nothing I'd rather do than spend my days with them.  And that's the truth.  Happy Mother's Day!