- Our sweet little tiny baby has FINALLY jumped the charts! He has always pretty much been in the THIRD percentile for weight, but by his 15-month visit had jumped up to 10th percentile at 22 lbs! We were so excited about that! BUT, this time he jumped up to the 25th-50th percentile! We could not believe it! It made me kinda sad though that he's getting sooooo big. Ready for the number?!?!?
24 lbs, 12 oz!
- His height has always been around the 75th percentile, but this time he jumped up to 90th at almost 32 inches long!
-Mason is perfectly healthy! Dr. Hain stated "Bowling Green is treating him well!" That made me happy!
- When diagnosed officially with his milk & beef allergies back in June, we started him on soy milk that same week. That was when the little cluster of bumps busted out on his left cheek. We have realized lately that they flare up every time he drinks soy milk so we're thinking he's allergic to soy as well. So, Dr. Hain put him on Rice Dream milk (found on the regular shelves next to rice cakes). We have been trying lots of different types of milk the last couple of weeks; coconut, almond, and goat's milk. But she wanted us to try rice milk for some reason. He's definitely not loving these as much as soy milk, but we're trying our best to make him drink at least 8 ounces of milk a day. He does LOVE coconut milk! He gulps that stuff down like it's going out of style! I wonder why she wants us to do rice milk instead??
- Mason is right where he needs to be talking-wise. Words he uses often: da da, duck duck, quack quack, moo, meow, ruff ruff, kaola, hippo, zebra, elephant, roar (for a bear & a lion), diaper, apple, nana (banana, even though my mom thinks he's saying her name since she's Nana Kay!), ee ee (sound a monkey makes), Mmmmm!!, no, bye... That's pretty much all of the words he says & sounds he makes! Wow, I've never actually sat down & counted them, but now I count 17. The doctor says between 15 & 25 is normal for an 18-month old.
- We HAD to discuss discipline because that is Marc's & my latest challenge with being parents. Mason is acting out at home and that is so unusual for him. He has always been so easy-going and calm; always the best little baby. Well, lately he has been saying "noooo!" and shaking his head no, hitting, throwing puzzle pieces directly into our eye (thank you), jumping on furniture, hitting the tv screen with the remote control, ripping important papers in half, throwing very sentimental, special, irreplacable items (like teapots from Honduras) across the room and breaking them in half, covering himself from head to to in blue ink from his dad's desk drawer, and the list goes on & on! He has busted out with these temper tentrums lately when he doesn't get what he wants and he lays down on the ground and starts pounding it with his hands & feet! The other night in the middle of our small group he even picked up a stuffed animal and started biting it like he was a dog!! What in the world!?! Wait, that makes my child sound TERRIBLE!! Well, he really just does all this stuff at home when it's just Marc & me, not really around other people. Anyway, he has been getting into trouble a lot and we're trying to figure out what other types of discipline we need to try. We started doing time-out a few weeks ago (see a few blog posts back) and he definitely understands what it means and actually stands there like he's supposed to with his little arms down by his side. Sometimes he cries like he knows he's in big trouble. It is actually pretty funny to watch him standing there, but we definitely have to contain that laughter as much as possible! :) But, lately time-out is not working as well and he seems to think it's a game. So, Dr. Hain says for now on to pick him up and physically remove him from the situation. Give him a different toy to play with and just get him away from that urge to get in trouble. So, we'll try that and see what happens! Any advice?!?! Dr. Hain says that all of this is normal for 18 month olds, especially the temper tantrum part, so that comforted us a little bit.
- Mason got the H1N1 vaccination! I have been sooo against him getting this with all his allergies and the whole febrile seizure situation, while Marc has been soooo for him getting it. Marc had to get the nasal one at his work about a month ago and that even made me nervous. But, Dr. Hain pretty much made him get it. I do feel a little bit better now about taking him to the childcare at the gym and getting him out & about around other kids. He was not feeling well pretty much the whole rest of the day after the shot, but quickly bounced back the next day. So, thankfully he won't have any kind of reaction to it at this point. He had the flu shot a couple of weeks before his 18-month check-up, so he's pretty much covered! It's a relief.
-Two things that Dr. Hain said we need to work on more because 18-month olds should be doing them by now: pointing out different body parts & have him practice feeding himself with a spoon. So, those are our main goals right now. We've been focusing so much on animals that we really haven't spent any time teaching him the different names of body parts. And he does hold a spoon sometimes while he's eating, but he ends up turning it upside down and making the biggest mess. So, this should be interesting!
- She said NO MORE BOTTLES or baby food! Well, we knew the baby food part, but every now and then we do bust out the bottle for comfort. Usually because his grandparents want to love on him and have that "baby" time with him in the rocking chair, or because Daddy just wants to! (See below :) )
Other fun things about our big 1 1/2 year old:
- A little behind the times, but our Mason is walking, wait, not walking, but RUNNING all over the place! He started walking August 1st, right after moving into our house in BG. He was almost 15 months old. He is now on the go constantly and is getting better about walking on cement and up stairs, with us holding his little hand.
- Mason is still a wonderful sleeper! He started sleeping 12 hours a night at 8 weeks old. We've always had an interesting reputation for letting our child stay up late (haha!), but that's changed now that he's older and more active. He goes to bed around 8:30 pm and sleeps until 8:30 am, usually. Sometimes Marc will go into Mason's room around 7 am or so to peek in on him before he goes to work and Mason wakes up. For the most part though, I've trained my child to follow in the footsteps of his momma by sleeping late! So, I'm one of those hated mommies that gets to sleep until 8:30 or later!! :) Yes, sometimes even 10 am! We know all this will change when Mason starts going to some kind of Mother's Day or Preschool, and definitely when he goes to school, and even when a second baby comes along, but for now we're taking advantage of this while we can! For our nighttime routine, either Marc or I will read him a story, turn on his cd (usually the lullaby cd I got at Christmas Village last year that says his name in the songs), turn on his nightlight, and put him in his crib awake. Lately Marc has been spoiling his baby rotten and rocking him and giving him a bottle. Which I love! I know those moments are so special between them. Who cares about the doctor's "no-bottle" rule! Some rules we can throw out the window, right? :) When we put him in his crib, he usually is out like a light in just a few minutes.
- Naps: Mason is still a great napper as well. We usually take one long nap if we're out and about during the day, but 2 naps if we stay home all day. He wakes up every morning, eats breakfast, plays a couple of hours, and then down for his first nap. It usually lasts 2 - 3 hours. If he does another nap, it's around 4 pm and lasts 1 - 2 1/2 hours. Just like with at night, I just put him in his crib and he goes to sleep on his own. I know, God has greatly blessed us in this area! I do not take it for granted at all!
- Mason LOVES to throw balls! Everyone talks about the arm he has on him! He turns everything into a ball, which can sometime get him into big trouble! Cell phones, remote controls, Graduates containers, sippy cups, books, brushes, etc. He loves basketball, football, soccer, and baseball. What's left??
- Still LOVES to read! The boy has books coming out of the ying yang! He will sit in his Anywhere Chair and flip through a book like he's a little adult. He turns the pages after a couple of minutes, like he is really sitting there reading it!
- Bathtime for us works best in the morning (showers with Daddy!) or during the day after playing hard and getting stinky. We rarely give him baths at bedtime. Didn't plan it that way, just kinda became the routine for us.
- Since Mason is allergic to pretty much anything dairy & beef, meals have been a challenge but we're used to it. It's just that "thing" we've been dealt with, but we're taking it and making the best out of it. I think that Mason actually ends up being a healthier eater because just think about it... what's on kids' menus? Cheeseburgers, mac 'n cheese, spaghetti, pizza, chicken tenders. All of those things have either dairy or beef in them (yes, most chicken tenders & french fries are fried in milk! I know, crazy!) So, everywhere we go we have to take our own meal from home for Mason. We have attempted two kids' meals. Once at Fazoli's after having the managers read the ingredient book to find out what's in the spaghetti... disaster. Mason hated it and just played in in, making the biggest mess. 2nd kids' meal: a turkey sub from Subway with apples & a juice box. Perfect! He loved the sandwich and munching on those crunchy apples!
So, Mason's breakfast includes: whole wheat/whole grain bread (he pulls the crust off FIRST and eats it!!), cranberries, eggs (without milk), a banana, raisins, cheerios, a juice cup of milk, and a juice cup of juice (white grape juice, apple, cran-raspberry, or orange). YES, that is a LOT! I mean, the child eats and eats and eats! And saying "Mmmmm!!" the entire time!
Lunch: bread, deli ham or turkey, fruit (pineapple, peaches, pears, blueberries, or grapes), cranberries, sometimes a veggie (green beans, peas, carrots, small white potatoes from a can, or a veggie medley), animal crackers, sippy cup of water, sippy cup of juice
Dinner: a Graduates meal (pasta, chicken & stars or the pasta & stew one... these are a mixture of chicken, pasta, & veggies), lots of fruit, cranberries, raisins, bread, several sippy cups of drink throughout the night!
- Mason starting drinking through a straw on October 13th, at 17 months old. It was at the nursing home when we were visiting my grandmother right after my Uncle Everett died. A nurse gave him a little juice with a straw and my dad & I just looked at her cuz we knew he couldn't drink from a straw, but we tried it anyway. My dad stuck that straw right through the top of the little cup and Mason sipped away! He had the biggest audience of all those nursing home patients! We all clapped the biggest and he put on the biggest production. We needed a little ray of sunshine at that very moment!
- I still love the small First Years Take n' Toss sippy cups but I think it's time we graduate from that and move to a step up to something for toddlers. Those cups have just worked the best as far as not leaking and Mason not having any trouble getting the drink out. We also love the light blue Avent one with the handles. I just bought some of the Dora Explorer cups that are bigger and have a lid and straw coming through. They make him look like such a big boy! Dr. Hain says we should not be using bottles at all, only cups. So, is she meaning sippy cups with handles or no handles, or cups with no lids at all? I was confused but forgot to ask about it. Cuz I could not imagine Mason drinking with a cup without a lid! I could just see right now how that would go...
- Mason & Mommy go to Kindermusik class every Monday morning. His class is for age newborn through 18 months old, so he is the oldest one in the class. It has been a little hard cuz I've been the only momma having to chase my child around, but lately some of the other kids have started to walk so we blend in a little more. Mason seems to love it. The teacher has to give him the Kindermusik bear to squeeze during the entire class so that he will pay attention. We sing a lot of sings, dance, read books, work on hands, arms, legs, feet, etc. coordination, and lately we've even been square dancing! We do a lot of lifting the kids up in the air and swinging them all around, and swaying with them, so it's a huge workout for me! Next Saturday is "Daddy Day" where no moms are allowed, so Marc is just thrilled about taking Mason to Kindermusik that day. :) Mrs. Mary Anne says she has lots of fun tricks up her sleeves for the dads! She says she's gonna make them work extra hard!
- Mason is a DANCING MACHINE!! You should see the link of a video clip our friend Scott Burton posted on his Facebook page a couple of weeks ago! He dances mainly to the Baby Einstein Baby Noah DVD. Whenever the music plays in between showing the animals. He has the beat down and everything. He changes the beat according to the song. He bends up and down and flails those arms up over his head. And that huge tummy just pokes right out there. It is hilarious! Every time we're in the car and some upbeat song comes on the radio, he dances the biggest in his car seat. Especially to Coldplay songs! Maybe that's cuz Marc and I listened to Coldplay a WHOLE lot when Mason was in my belly, especially to the song "Fix You." That was kinda our Mason song.
- Mason still loves church. He has loved it since the first day he went at 8 weeks old. He goes to nursery & children's worship like a pro and has never once cried for us. He has just settled right into our new church and loves playiing with all the other kids. Last Sunday I took him and propped him in his little bucket seat in Sunday School, right between his 2 girlfriends Sydney & Gracie, and they started fighting over him immediately! It was hilarious! One was tugging on his little white sweater while the other one had her head on his shoulder crying because he was giving the other one more attention! It caused the biggest ruckus in the middle of the class. And of course I took out my camera and snapped the most pictures! But why is his favorite toy in the entire nursery the onion from the play kitchen? Thank you.
-Mason is a DADDY'S BOY!! Marc's second word was "da da" ("ball" was his first) which was a prelude of what would be among his favorite things. :) Everytime Marc gets home from work, Mason can hear him driving into the garage and he stands by the door and does his "Da Da Dance". He starts squealing and moving all around so reaady for da da to bust through that door. He is so excited he can hardly stand it. He always reaches up for his daddy and loves being carried around so high. He loves pilfering in his daddy's nightstand and pulling out the most random items... cough drops, Marc's very treasured Bible, cell phone chargers... LOVES carrying Marc's shoes through the house and organzing them all in a line. Oh, his MOST favorite thing to carry around the house is this advertisement/flyer thang of Marc being the new ophthalmologist at Graves-Gilbert with the biggest picture of Marc on it. Mason pulls it off the fridge and carries it around so proudly talking to it. I mean, of course Mason loves his momma and gives me the sweetest hugs & kisses all day long, but there is just something about his da da! :)
- Mason has been into giving kisses & hugs for a few months now. When we tell him to say bye to someone, he throws his arms around their neck and gives the biggest open mouth kiss thang right on the cheek. Then he goes right back to playing or whatever like he was forces to give the goodbye! It's hilarious. He will come up to me for no reason and just plop a big sloppy kiss right on my mouth! And he always has to hold my face between his 2 hands. There is nothing sweeter. These are saved only for mommy & daddy, though, so don't go getting any ideas! Here he is lovin' on his Great-Granddad... I am sooo glad I captured this moment on camera!
I could go on & on & on about a million other things about our child but I'm sure by now you get the point that we have one hyper, energetic, outgoing little boy on our hands! Life has definitely become a little more challenging. We're SO super thankful for this little "challenge" living in our home, but I'm not gonna lie... it's hard some days. Everyone has always said how "laid-back" and "good" of a baby Mason is, but behind closed doors it's not always as easy as it seems. I've also heard that boys are waaaaaay different than girls in the energy & ball-throwin' department! Mason Thomas definitely keeps us on our toes, but we love him with a love we never knew we could have. Besides the energy, I'm sure you can also tell by reading this that we have a smart, super loving, friendly, and sweet little boy. He loves his family and he loves life. Just like his parents! He loves to go, go, go; to travel; to eat, and to sleep! He's definitely his mommy's son! When Marc & I even spend just a few hours without Mason, we feel like a huge part of us is missing, that missing puzzle piece we were longing for for so long before May 11, 2008! These 18 months have been truly amazing; an unbelievable gift from God; our families love Mason so much that our hearts ache!
Like I've said time & time again; like I pray every single night as I'm tucking Mason in... THANK YOU GOD, FOR BABY MASON!!!