Thursday, January 9, 2014

Calendar Girl - Nineteen Months

Soooooo..... yeah.  Ruby is actually already 20 months old.  Oops!  Things were so crazy with the holidays, and they still are, as I'm crocheting my buns off getting ready for another sale in my Instagram shop, @spottedpony_handmade.  Basically every naptime is consumed by work.  But since Ruby is growing up so fast, I really don't want time to go by without recording it.  So you get 19mo today, and 20mo hopefully soon.  Also?  Her 19mo pics doubled as our Christmas card pics, and I didn't even bust out my chalkboard.  Whatever.

I feel like 19 months was actually pretty similar to 18 months.  Ruby continues to be awesome, and blow our socks off with her smarts.  She did have a pretty big accomplishment this month, though.  She learned how to go down the stairs on her own!

I left her with Daddy for my longest stretch ever (about 6 hours), and while I was gone, he taught her how to back down the stairs.  This is HUGE, as we live in a townhouse with 38 steps from top to bottom.  It is so so so so nice to be able to actually carry things down the stairs with me now!  Ruby is very cautious about it, and sometimes even drops to her belly and starts backing up when she's still about 5 feet from the top of the stairs.  Hilarious.

This month, Ruby also got to attend her first "concert".  Caspar Babypants performed a special private show at her school, and she even got an autographed CD afterward!  Some of the extremely rowdy behavior of older children in attendance made her pretty shy and reserved during the show.  But I'm pretty certain she enjoyed watching the "guy" sing, because she makes me play the CD over and over (and has favorite songs).

Ruby also went to the indoor playground, Wiggleworks, for the first time with her BFF, and played until she could barely keep her eyes open.  She's not a very physical kid, so I was pretty impressed with how much she seemed to enjoy herself.

Ruby's vocabulary is off the charts now.  I honestly stopped being able to keep track of all of her new words.  There were just too many!  She doesn't pronounce the "s" sound at all.  She either omits it from a word, or changes it to "sh".  Which makes words like "sit" rather funny...  Some of my other faves from this month are snuggle (nuggle), shampoo (chappoo!), and goat (goke) thanks to her favorite Busha leggings.  Ruby is also starting to link words together, too, which makes "goke booty" pretty darn hilarious/adorable!

The trick to taking her picture is giving her something to hold.

At 19 months, Ruby has a bunch of teeth.  How many and where?  I can't really say.  She's doesn't really let us in there to inspect.  I know she has all the molars she should have right now.  Brushing teeth is kind of a battle, but she likes to do it at the same time as us.  Also, Mr. G is waaaaay better at getting in there than I am.  She seems more amenable to him doing it.

Also this month, I realized that Ruby's hair is long enough to put in a ponytail!!!  I was so excited the day I figured this out, but HOLY COW does it make her look like a KID.  Adorable, yes, but so grown up!  Bring me a kleenex!

Ruby is still a great eater.  She did surprise us a few times this month by simply not wanting to eat at a mealtime, even things that are her faves (like homemade pizza!).  But I guess this is pretty typical of toddlers, and she always seems to get right back on track, so, whatever.  She's super loving broccoli, the aforementioned pizza, cheese, blueberries (as always), pancakes, and pretty much any fruit.  We decided to hold off on giving her anymore strawberries for a while.  I have a strawberry allergy, but she seemed to tolerate them fine at first.  After some pretty horrible diaper rashes, we decided to table them for a while.  Not sure if that's the culprit, but maybe?  We'll reintroduce later.  The only things Ruby really doesn't like is yogurt and raw tomatoes.  She doesn't love meat, but will usually eat some.  I thank my lucky stars that I have a kid who eats!

This month, I entered a hairbow swap online that was Disney-themed, so Ruby got introduced to the Little Mermaid.  I am a kid myself, so I owned the DVD and showed her the cover.  She became obsessed with "mimi" (mermaid), and asked me to "read" the DVD several times.  Sweet girl, thought it was a book!  She still doesn't watch tv, but I put it on for her one day anyway.  She wasn't that interested, which wasn't really surprising, since she really doesn't know "how" to watch tv.  Still, with repeated requests to read the cover, we decided to get her a little board book, which she loves.  She also now recognizes the Starbuck's logo as a mermaid, which she calls "coffee mimi".

Ha!  This face!  We get this a lot.
Ruby continues to love her school, her doggie, dancing, and helping at volunteering.  We continue to have an absolute blast watching her grow and learn.  She continually blows us away with the things she knows and her little mannerisms.  As hard as it is to know she's getting closer and closer to two, it's pretty great to get to see what's to come with her, since she's so fantastic right now!  I'm still absolutely loving this age, and so happy to be this girl's mama. =)

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year!!!

Hey!  It's 2014!  I hope you've all had a great time celebrating however you wanted to.  We stayed in, made a homemade "pizzie" as Ruby calls it, put our little lady to bed, put on The Walking Dead marathon and watched it in our pjs, then switched over to watch coverage of the fireworks at the Space Needle at midnight.  Honestly?  That was perfect.  Just our speed these days.

Even though blogging hasn't been a huge priority as of late (I would like to change that!), I couldn't let the new year go by without some kind of related post.  Last year I did a sort of year in review (omg, look how tiny Ruby was!!!).  I like that, but I decided to do something a little different this year and basically totally copy Erin's survey-style review.  Peppered with pics from the last year, of course.

Here goes...

2013 in Review

1.)  What did you do in 2013 that you'd never done before?
I had to think about this for a bit, 2013 was pretty tame!  For the first time in my adult-life I had no real, paying job.  Pretty massive un-paid job though.  Being a mom is no joke!  I also put myself out there for the first time, and started selling things I'd made.  That was pretty huge for me.  It's something I've always thought about doing, but the first time I'd tried.  And right at the end of the year here, I left Ruby with someone other than Mr. G.  Yeah.  That still hadn't happened (that's what happens when your baby doesn't take a bottle!).  It was high time, and of course, it went great.

2.)  Did you keep your New Year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't think I made any?  I have lots of goals in mind for 2014, though...

3.)  Did anyone close to you have a child?
Yes!!!  My good friend Sara had two!  Twins, one boy, one girl.  I couldn't be happier for her!  Surprisingly, I don't think anyone else did, which is weird after the baby boom in 2012.  Lots more babies are coming in 2014 though - including my nephew, whom I can't wait to meet!

4.)  Did anyone close to you die?
Thankfully, no.

5.)  Where did you travel?
Um, to Target and back...?  We didn't travel further than about 30 miles from home this WHOLE YEAR!!!  That's actually not true, Mr. G did.  But Ruby and I were total homebodies in 2013!

6.) What would you like to have in 2014 that you lacked in 2013?
Our own house.  This has long been a "want" of ours, but now that we have Ruby it is top priority.  It will be hard.  We live in a very high cost of living area, and our must-haves are great (large size, yard, good school district, easy commute).  But our rental townhouse just does not work for us, and we spent the whole of the year complaining about it.

7.)  What dates from 2013 will remain etched upon your memory?
Wow.  I think this question believes I have a better memory than I actually do!  The holidays come to mind.  Easter was so lovely.  And the Fourth of July, and of course, this Christmas.  Ruby's first birthday is one I'll never forget.  And the day she started walking, because it seemed she was sooooooo behind in her gross motor skills.  And the day we met Sherry and John from YHL (pictured above) because that was just funny!  Taking Ruby to the fair and to baseball games.  2013 was pretty tame, but I do hope I remember those things.

8.)  What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Being Ruby's mom.  I know, that sounds kind of lame.  But not.  This year I really felt like I got into my mom groove.  It wasn't mere survival anymore, it became so much FUN.  I absolutely have room for improvement in this area (of course, I'm not perfect), but I've tried to dedicate myself to her, and be really intentional, yet relaxed.  I think it's working for us, because all three of us are really enjoying this time in Ruby's life.

9.)  What was your biggest failure?
Ugh.  Keeping my house clean.  I am so BAD at this, and it honestly makes me crazy!!!  I love a clean house, but I hate to clean it, and I can never get into a good groove.  One of my hopes for the new year is to purge SO MUCH STUFF that we have and never use, so that even in our small home, we have only things we need or love and everything has a place.  I have to do it.  It is making me nuts.

10.)  Did you suffer illness or injury?
No!  We were thankfully really healthy and safe for the whole year.  Well, except for what I'm pretty sure was a broken toe...

11.)  What was the best thing you bought?
Hmm...  That's a toughie!  We didn't make any major purchases this year.  I think I'll go with Ruby's new car seat.  We still are madly in love with it.

12.)  Whose behavior merited celebration?
Big shocker, but I'm going to say RUBY!  Seriously, though, we pinch ourselves every day.  As far as toddlers go, she is tops!  She constantly impresses me when we put her in out-of-the-norm situations.  She just rolls with it and is her charming self.  I can think of only one time she has had a tantrum.  After being such a fussy infant, this is such a breath of fresh air!  I was always terrified of toddlerhood, but she has been such a joy this year.  I'm guessing that since I'm putting it all out there, I'm probably jinxing myself and her terrible twos will be terrible, but really.  She is amazing.

13.)  Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Hmm...  Without getting too political, I'll just say that my fellow Americans who put their faith/beliefs above the rights of others.  Sometimes Facebook has been a little much to take.  I don't understand why other people think they have the right to say who someone can and cannot love.  Makes no sense to me.  

It also makes me both appalled and depressed when I see parents putting their children in harms way via carseat misuse, or forward-facing before age 2.  I see it every single day in blogs, instagram, and facebook.  I know that some people just don't know better (but the information is so readily available!!!), but what really gets me is the parents that DO know, and choose to put their child's life at risk anyway.

14.)  Where did most of your money go?
The normal stuff.  Rent.  Food (man, our kid eats a LOT!).  My car payment.  We can't wait to not have that payment anymore.  Barf.

15.)  What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Um...  Nothing?  Ha!  I guess I'll say, getting to spend the year at home with my girl.  It's a privilege and I don't take a single day for granted.

16.)  What song will always remind you of 2013?
Macklemore - Can't Hold Us.  Daft Punk - Get Lucky.  Oh, and Blurred Lines, of course.  OH, and What Does the Fox Say.  Ruby won't let us forget that one.  Nor will she let us forget Phillip Phillips' Gone Gone Gone.

17.)  Compared to this time last year, are you: a.)happier or sadder?  b.)thinner or fatter?  c.)richer or poorer?
a.) Happier.  Like I mentioned above, 2012 felt like survival-mode.  This year, I've really been able to enjoy my new role in life.  b.) Sadly, I'm going to go with fatter?  I don't know.  I lost weight when Ruby was born, but I think it slowly has been creeping back.  Stuff just doesn't fit right, though I'm the same size?  I don't know.  c.) Richer.  Mr. G got two new jobs in 2013, each one better paying than the last.  The one he has now has WAY better benefits, too, so we're saving $700/mo in insurance alone.

18.)  What do you wish you'd done more of?
Besides clean my house?  Exercise.  Major fail on this one, this past year.  To go along with that?  Eat healthy food.  I have some weird sensory issues with food, and pregnancy definitely made that worse - and it never went away!  I need to get my butt in gear on this one.  Not just for my sake, but for Ruby's.  I'm obsessive about feeding her healthy foods, but she's going to realize that I am not setting a very good example with my own.

19.)  What do you wish you'd done less of?  
Probably mindlessly playing around on my phone.  I try to not do it with Ruby around, but I could get better about this.  Actually, I already feel I'm improving.  My time during naptime has been a lot more productive lately, and I like it!

20.)  How did you spend Christmas?
I think I summed it up pretty well here.  Basically, we kicked back at home with all our family, and it was awesome!

21.)  Did you fall in love in 2013?
Just more in love with my little family.

22.)  What was your favorite TV program?
That's a hard pick?  NCIS has, and always will be my fave.  This year though, we started watching Homeland, which is awesome.  The Walking Dead continues to be a favorite.  We also got really into The Killing, and I'm looking forward to it's return.  I also started watching Modern Family this year, and find it really funny.  

23.)  Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate at this time last year?
I don't think I hate anybody.  I did lose a friendship this year, after being let down by that friend many, many times.  I'm sad about that, but I don't hate that person.

24.)  What was the best book you read?
Oh, wow...  Did I read a book this year?  That's horrible!  But, did I?  I think it was 2013 when I read Ender's Game for the first time (after being told for years by a friend of mine that I'd like it) and it turns out, he was right.  I loved it.

25.)  What was your greatest musical discovery?
I don't think I made one?  I did realize that I (like everyone else) super love Macklemore, though.  Bonus that he's from Seattle!

26.)  What did you want and get?
Um...  Oh!  A new sewing machine!!!  That was my birthday/Mother's Day gift in the spring, and it has been everything I had hoped for.  I am still so impressed that my husband knew to go to an actual sewing machine dealer, and that he picked out such a perfect machine (Janome DC2013) on his own!

27.)  What did you want and not get?
A house.  I'm ok with that, because we'll get one when we get one, but man, do I want to move!  We did go to look at a couple, and found a great one, but it was just too much of a stretch for us financially at the time.

28.)  What was your favorite film of the year?
Do you know, I did not see ONE new movie this year?  Not one!  My list of must-sees is so, so long.

29.)  What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
We had a low-key day.  I opened my sewing machine.  I took Ruby to Home Depot to get parts for her birthday present.  And then we went to Outback for dinner.  It was chill, and I liked it.  Can you tell I like to relax?  Ha!  Oh, and I turned the big 3-1.

30.)  What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I'm not sure?  I guess more time with Mr. G?  We haven't really been making our relationship a huge priority.  We should probably get on that. ;)

31.)  How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2013?
Frumpy?  Honestly, it's been seriously BAD.  Another of my goals for 2014 is to remedy this, starting with purging my closet.

32.)  What kept you sane?  
Um, coffee?  But more seriously, probably other mom-friends.  It's nice to be able to have the support of people who are at the same place in life as you.  Ruby graduated from our parent-baby class back in May, but I've continued friendships with some of those moms I've known since she was born, and made new ones at her toddler group as well.

33.)  Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Um...  What?  I guess President Obama.  I respect that guy a great deal.

34.)  What political issue stirred you the most?
Probably same-sex marriage.  I'm pretty proud to live in a more progressive place, that doesn't put limits on love.

35.)  Who did you miss?
My Ohio friends.  I miss them every year.  I've got to get back!!!

36.)  Who was the best new person you met?
Good question!  I don't feel like I met a lot of new people this year!  There is a mom I met volunteering whom I really like, and another few from toddler group that I look forward to getting to know even better.  I also fell into a group of very crafty mamas over on instagram.  Collectively they've inspired me to sell my handmade items, and even helped me along the way.  Plus, they've added a lot of personality to Ruby's wardrobe. ;)

37.)  Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2013.
Nobody is perfect, including myself.  I love, LOVE social media.  Don't get me wrong about that at all.  But it's such a small window into someone's life, and usually, they are trying to paint it perfect.  To show the good stuff.  I am definitely guilty of this, and also guilty of getting down on myself when my life is not "blog-worthy" (newsflash, that's all the time!).  But I am getting much better at realizing that the truly important stuff is not picture perfect.  It's just to be there for my daughter/family.  I'm learning to know my limits, and let the little stuff go that's not important.  If I run out of time, or my "2014" shaped pancake turns out ridiculous-looking, or I only have time for one instagram flash sale in a month, or we only put up half the Christmas decorations and never make it to the reindeer farm, that is OK.  Time with my girl is the most important, and she doesn't care if it's "perfect". 

So there you have it.  My look back on 2013.  Honestly?  It was a pretty good year.  I have high hopes for 2014.  There's a lot I want to accomplish, but I think I can, and I'm looking forward to it.