Friday, March 30, 2007
Oh, and as for the picture: Eli found his 1st Birthday Hat this morning and requested to wear it while he played before class.
Thursday, March 29, 2007
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
Monday, March 26, 2007
Eli signed a few more sentences today. "Milk. Please." and "More. Please." For several months now Eli has been using 'please' instead of 'more', but in the last week he's picked it up again. Also we had a huge breakthrough in the behavior department, at least for today. When we walked to the park, Eli held my hand the entire way without once trying to squirm away. (Though he did pull and go limp on the way home, resulting in me carrying him home.) Also, when we came inside after the park he didn't cry once. This amazed me, especially considering it was Eli's nap time so he was tired.
Sunday, March 25, 2007
Eli has learned how to knock on doors. It's quite amusing to see him curl up his fist and turn his hand upside down to rap-rap-rap at the door. It's even more fun when there is someone there to answer his knocks.
Today was a "first" for Eli: he signed his first sentence! Even though he is progressing with his verbal skills, he still has about a dozen signs he uses regularly. After Lehr cut up some hamburger for Eli's dinner, Eli took a bite and then signed "Thanks. Daddy. Thanks. Daddy." Even though he says "Daddy" quite well, he still loves to point to his head in reference sometimes.
Friday, March 23, 2007
Thursday, March 22, 2007
All three boys posed for a few shots, but Tyler seemed very interested in the noise my camera made. It seems he and Eli share that camera curiosity!
Wednesday, March 21, 2007
Eli has two favorite songs that he will request through hand gestures: Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes and The Itsy Bitsy Spider. For the first, he'll touch his head with both pointer fingers, and then maybe his torso (I guess that is supposed to be his shoulders?). His request for the Spider song resembles the sign for "more" due to the way I touch my fingertips together when I sing the song to him. Also, his mealtime prayer is sung to the tune of Frere Jaques, and he often sings (no real words) along with me.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
Monday, March 19, 2007
Sunday, March 18, 2007
Most of you know that I've been struggling with Eli's recent upgrade in tantrums; I have been trying to determine if I'm expecting too much or too little of him. There have been several days in the last month that have left me frazzled beyond words. In those moments I definitely lost sight of the big picture which is, in my opinion, Eli is a great kid!
If you choose to continue reading, be forewarned: I'm about to get a bit bragadocious. After all, it is my right as a parent. (One of the great things about having kids is the liberty I now have to brag about Eli at the drop of a hat.)
Grandma and Grandpa visited this last week, and while they witnessed a few (relatively small) tantrums, they were not shy about commenting on his good behavior. With the exception of the last night they were here, he let one or both of them put him down for naps and bedtime without any protest. He also freely gave kisses, hugs, and smiles all week long. All in all he was very pleasant during their visit. Last night (after a week of company and 'performing', mind you) we went out to a later dinner with a few out-of-town friends. Eli is not as familiar with them as he has not seen them in months, yet he sat through the entire dinner (which was lengthy due to the busy restaurant) without complaining. We overheard several patrons (and a few people at our table) noticing how good Eli was through the meal. (The score is now Eli: 2.) Finally, as we were walking out of church this morning I was approached by a woman who often works in the nursery for both Sunday service and MOPS. She made a point to stop and tell me how happy she was to have Eli in her class today. She gushed about how fun and good he is, and how she often 'steals' him from his MOPS class to cuddle because he is so snuggly. Nothing warms my heart more than to hear that Eli freely gives affection to people other than immediate family. As much as it saddens me that he is growing up and not a baby anymore, I love to hear how he is growing into his own person with relationships that have nothing to do with Lehr or me. Alright...bragging finished. I just had to share how overwhelmed with perspective I've been this last week.
(Of course, when Lehr brought Eli home from church, he ate his lunch and then threw a 20-minute long tantrum over touching the stereo.)
On a side note, one of Eli's girlfriends (Gracie) came to our church today. As we were saying our good-byes, Eli leaned over and gave Gracie a kiss (open-mouthed, of course. He still hasn't learned the social norm of dry kisses.) totally unprompted. Since Gracie is usually the one chasing after Eli with her affection, she seemed quite happy about this.
Friday, March 16, 2007
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Today the four of us went to the Atlanta Botanical Gardens to enjoy the 80 (yes, 80 mid-March) degree weather. Eli and Treis had a great time running around the children's garden; Eli loved to go down the slide (on his stomach, feet first, of course). After two hours, Eli was exhausted, so we had a quick snack and left. All in all a great day!
Monday, March 12, 2007
Sunday, March 11, 2007
After church today Lehr took Eli on a hike at Sope Creek. The weather was so nice (70!) and Eli hadn't been in the hike-pack in a while, so he took advantage of the boys' afternoon. At one point Lehr let Eli out to explore the trail on his own, as he loves to do. However due to the amount of leaves and branches covering the outskirts of the trail, the terrain was a bit difficult for Eli to maneuver, so he opted to crawl a bit on top of the pine needles. Wouldn't you know a snake (probably harmless) was right underneath Eli and the leaves.... Lehr said he jumped about 10-feet trying to pick up Eli before the snake discovered him.
Thursday, March 08, 2007
After his bath each night either Lehr or I slather lotion all over Eli before putting his pajamas on. Half of the time he'll hold out his hand in a request for a little lotion. When we put some on his hand he usually wipes his hands together to rub the lotion in. The other night I took a shower just before we gave him a bath and he came into the bedroom with me while I put lotion on myself. He watched me very carefully as I put it all over my arms and legs, and then he came over to 'ask' for lotion on his hand. Instead of his usual hand rub, he took his now-covered-with-lotion hand and rubbed it on my legs again and again.
After our all of our stops yesterday, Eli's nose was becoming a mess during our ride home so I handed him a wipe (something I've never done before) in hopes that he'd wipe his face like he does when you give him a napkin (something we didn't teach him - he just kinda picked it up on his own). Not only did he wipe his face, but he blew his nose into the wipe. WOW! Neither Lehr nor I have been sick at all with sinus issues in the past six or seven months, so I'm not sure who he has seen blowing their nose, but obviously he learned a lot from the demonstration!
The moral of the story is: Don't Blink. They grow up way too quick even when you think you are watching their every move.
Wednesday, March 07, 2007
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
Today was one of those rare occasions. Eli woke up from his nap rather early and played a little, but then he was silent again so I assumed he went back to sleep. Ten minutes later he started crying. Hard. I went into his room to find him in his crib on all fours, crying his eyes out. I picked him up and he immediately melted into me. (Again, this is NOT normal. He usually gives quick hugs or kisses and is then DONE.) I swayed back and forth for a few minutes trying to calm him, but he was burning up and very upset. Another thing Eli is not a fan of is cuddling in a chair, but I sat down anyway (my back was killing me!) and started to rock him. He still snuggled into me and eventually stopped crying. He was still warm, but after about ten minutes he felt more normal and he fell asleep on me. I could have deposited him back into his crib for the rest of his nap, but I decided to take advantage of one of the few times Eli has let me hold him and cuddle. We rocked in his chair and he slept for almost a full hour like that. These are the moments.....
'Hello' is a new word in the last week. Eli enunciates it very emphatically, sticking his tongue way out on the 'l' portion. And he says it over and over again. "ha-low! ha-low!"
Monday, March 05, 2007
Sunday, March 04, 2007
Saturday, March 03, 2007
Three years ago, Fugees began as a soccer team for refugee boys in the Clarkston (Georgia) area. Luma Mufleh worked as a volunteer coach and quickly realized that the needs of this particular team were going to be unique. By the end of the second year, mentoring and after-school help were in-place. However, she realized that she couldn't address all of the needs of the players' families on her own, so Luma helped found the Fugees Family.
Here is the article Lehr found in the New York Times. It's quite inspiring!
Friday, March 02, 2007
So one of my new favorite things, which is also one of Lehr's favorite things, is Eli's comprehension of seemingly unknown words. (Sidenote: I posted the other day about Eli's spoken vocabulary and how it appears to be so much less than his (female) friends' vocabs. Let me assure you that I am not concerned as of yet. He still signs like a fiend and I know boys are usually slower to develop vocally.) Almost every day for a while now Eli will shock me by showing an understanding of a word or a phrase that we've never formally taught him.
Example: Yesterday Eli bent down to look under the couch, as he often does, to see if any toys had made a new home there. Of course they had, so he proceeded to lay down and 'talk' to me about them.
"Eli, are there toys under the couch?"
"Yeee-ah! Phermonifps eslo!"
"Really? Can you reach them?"
The key word there was 'reach'....I don't think I've ever used that word with him, but immediately Eli stuck his hand under the couch and tried to grab the toys. I know most of the time when he and I have been in similar situations I've said 'grab' or 'touch' or 'get'. Maybe it was just a coincidence that he reached after I asked him to. Maybe he just deduced by the conversation that I was going to ask. Who knows. This is just one example of the constant sponge that he is. I guess toddler-hood isn't always so bad....
(Unrelated picture: Eli eating pizza on the boardwalk at Lehr's all-time favorite pizza place last weekend.)
Thursday, March 01, 2007
Of course when this happens my guilt gets to me...what if he's already getting jealous of the baby (highly unlikely, but who knows), what if he's teething (I usually give him some Tylenol if I'm confident this is the cause), OR what if he's being a brat and I need to nip it!?!?!? So today I put him in a little time out (basically ignore him) for a few minutes at a time which did nothing to calm him...once I resumed activity with him he would scream for another 4-5 minutes, then he would have 2-3 minutes of normal/happiness before going into a full force scream fest again. Holding him didn't help, putting him down didn't help, trying to feed or water him didn't help....I was SOO frustrated!
My point in all of this is sometimes I think he gets bored. I'm at a loss because I try to sit and read with him, or play blocks or other toys with him, but he will do that for seriously less than two minutes at a time. So how do I interact/entertain him? He's 18 months and I'm hoping this is a little bit of a phase because until about two weeks ago he was going strong at about a month of really good independent play. What am I doing wrong?!?!? (Or not doing?)