Whoa little Frances… are you trying to give me a heart attack!? I simply cannot believe that Isla is a year old. CRAZY.
I forgot to mention that her fourth tooth came in the day before her birthday on April 14th! She did not fuss, cry, act cranky or give any indication that she had a tooth coming in :). I only know because I had been checking her gums incessantly, and I saw it poking through.
Also, we are still nursing and have not started weaning yet; she has yet to try cow’s milk. I may be softening on my 18 month stance, and am thinking I might nurse to to to 2 years. We’ll see. Its so easy, especially with traveling, and easy toddler food not being readily available.
I am very thankful that I have been able to reach my breastfeeding goal of 1 year. I never set out to be strictly “no formula”. I had a “no formula” goal of 6 months, and then formula to supplement if needed after that, but it just got so easy after about 3 months. I think formula is easier when they are little because you worry so much about how much they are eating, latch, ect… breastfeeding is plain old HARD and nerve-wracking in the beginning, but then the longer you breastfeed the easier it gets! They get so fast, and you know they are getting a lot of food from other sources so you don’t worry about hunger. Plus you don’t have to lug formula around everywhere you go! I can’t believe that I have nursed this long, and I am thankful to be able to continue as long as Isla and/or I want to. She may wean herself before I am ready… who knows?
I know I say this every time, but this time I REALLY mean it! I don’t want her to get bigger, I love this age (as I have loved them all). Its intoxicating being everything to such an adorable little person. She loves me so much and looks to me to meet all of her needs. I know that she will grow up, and I want her to grow up and be strong and independent from me, but right now, it is so sweet to be her mom and see her face light up when she sees me. I have been going through old photos and boohooing, surprise, surprise…
I had Nick try to get pictures today of her in her Aggie bow, and we couldn’t really get any good ones. However, it is a good comparison to how much she has grown! I am also finishing her 11 month post and back dating it, just to have it on record.
This is really the bow that started my bow obsession! I had been reading Kelly’s Korner Blog for a while, and I never really understood why she was so into bows. Then I visited College Station when I was pregnant with Isla and I found this little bow, just in case Isla was a girl… and she was! Then after she was born, she just looked so cute in her bow, and I got another little pink one, and we wore that one out. Then I discovered "Wee Ones” headbands where you can change out the bows and the rest was history! The truth it, newborns are so androgynous that is nice to have an easy way to differentiate girls from boys… not to mention bows are just so cute!!!Its hard to believe that such a little pipsqueak is now the beautiful baby that you see before you! Ok, maybe it isn’t. I don’t know. I am speaking gibberish these past couple of days.
Isla is now signing so well!!! She can sign “no”, “please”, “thank you”, “more”, “potty”, and “milk”. She understands and can kind of sign “water”, and “finished”. We are also working on “sleep”, “bed”, “bath". For some reason she has been getting “finished” mixed up with “more”, although she was doing it very well before.
I think its so cool that my 1 year old says “please” anytime she wants something! Who would have ever thought that you could teach such a young child manners? Oh yes, the authors of Baby Wise :), that’s who!
Also, the fact that she can communicate means that she is much less whiny and fussy. During her 10-11 month, she went through a phase where she would point and grunt and whine when she wanted something. I redoubled my efforts to teach her “please”, and now she never does that. I mean sometimes she fusses a little bit when she gets told “no”, but she knows I understand her when she wants something because she can let me know she wants something with “please”, so there is no frustration from not being able to communicate.
She is obsessed with phones, remotes, my laptop… anything electronic. I had decided to just let her play with phones because she was so tenacious, and also other people let her play with their phones, so it was hard to be consistent. I thought it was harmless… That was before she started throwing a tantrum when I needed to take the phone away from her to use it, and I couldn’t talk without her following me all over the house crying! Nick and I are having to retrain her that all of the above items are off limits and she is doing so well. Now she will try to touch them, and will look at me and sign “no.” Its hilarious! Or she will stop when I say “no.”
She tries very hard to be obedient, but sometimes I think she has decided that a spanking is worth it to get her hands on contraband items. There is one phone that we consistently have a problem with, but thankfully its our Russian home phone so we almost never get calls on that one.
She has only just started walking when we hold her hands this past week! She has been pulling up since November and crawling since October, but up until then, she would only put allll of her weight in her booty when you tried to walk her holding her hands. I am not making any predictions on when she starts walking! She will do that in her own time; I just can’t believe it took her so long to get to this point!
She is a fantastic eater and will eat anything put in front of her. I attribute that to Baby Wise first, and making her baby food myself second (I don’t feed her anything I wouldn’t eat). I know everyone thinks Baby Wise is just about sleep training, but it is also about regulating digestion (which helps with sleep training) and making sure that your infant gets a full meal whenever they eat. I need to get back to being creative with my meals to keep my good little eater!
She is also saying “Hi” now, and frequently says “Hi! Hi! Hi!” to get my attention.
She is saying Mama, Dada, pa (for potty, Paw Paw), Boo, bo (for book), ha (for hot), Bye Bye, and Hi!
She is crazy about Nick! I think that they have a special connection because I don’t think its normal for a baby this young to be so into their Dads. Every time I walk over to the front door, Isla goes “Dada”! She will chase after him saying “Dada” very urgently so that he will pick her up. They play together and have a blast. I can tell that she absolutely adores him!
And now potty training! I was surprised at the interest shown when I mentioned it so let me give a little bit more background. I actually got the idea from “The Baby Whisperer” books, and I think what sold me on the idea was a statistic from the 1950’s. In the 1950’s 90% of children were potty trained by 18 months, nowadays, its a mere 25%. There are probably a lot of reasons for this, but I would guess that a lot of it has to do with more moms working. Well I don’t have that excuse! I am home all day with nothing to do. Anyway, she recommends starting as soon as a baby can sit upright or at about 9 months. The Baby Whisperer gave me confidence that it is not from lack of a child’s ability to be potty trained earlier, its just that parents don’t potty train earlier. If I were a baby :), I would want to be potty trained as soon as possible so I didn’t have to sit in my own poop ever! She says that most of her babies are daytime potty trained by 1 year if started at 9 months. I also have a friend that started potty training her little girl at 1 year, and that gave me confidence too.
I know that the longer you wait, you can potty train much faster. With this way, it takes much longer to potty train, but you are done earlier. Its a sprint versus marathon mentality!
This is what we do:
I take Isla to the potty several times a day, usually after she gets up, and then again after she eats, and any other occasion that I have her diaper off. I tell her its time to go to the potty; this is very much parent directed. Nick has been 100% on board, and takes the initiative more than I do!
This is a no pressure situation, and right now we are just familiarizing her with the potty. She sits on the big potty in a little insert and is quite happy! We play with her and her toys, and when she wants off, we pick her up. I have been preparing her for a while, and whenever I can tell she is going to the bathroom (all mommies know the poop face), I have been signing “potty”, and whenever else I find it appropriate so that she can make a connection.
She has gone #1 once and #2 once in the potty. We made a big deal about it, and let her flush the toilet and say “bye bye” to her you know what.
And we are just going to keep doing that until a light bulb goes off, and she figures it out. I should probably look up more tips and techniques because right now we are winging it, but I am happy with our methods. One thing I did backtrack on was using pull ups. We are going to switch to pull ups when we get closer to our sea shipment arriving. I don’t want to run out of the ones that I have, and then have to switch back to diapers for a while.
I am not worrying about nighttime potty training right now.
This is been my best year!!! I can honestly say that I felt high as a kite for the first 3 or 4 months after she was born. I came back to earth a little bit more after that, but this has been the best year of my life. Nick and I adore Isla with everything in us, and she has made our marriage so much better. I can’t believe I was ever worried!
I praise God for the blessing of my little Isla! I couldn’t imagine my life without her.