Friday, December 27, 2013

One Year



It's been one year since I had to say good bye to my little girl. I still miss her every day.  Memories flood back and I still can't believe that I went through that or that I was able to deal with that pain. This past year has been one filled with so much hope, but never without a shadow of fear because of what happened to Stella.

 But today I am blessed to have a sweet little baby boy to snuggle when I get sad. I am so thankful for the difference a year makes. And I will always cling to the hours that I got to spend with Stella on this day a year ago.


Friday, November 29, 2013

Theodore Jack Reddington- His Birth Story

I am so behind right now in life. Two kids... is busy. I have at least 4 posts to write, all of my thank notes to write from having this baby, Quinn's birthday and my birthday. My house is a disaster full of laundry piles waiting to be put away because my sweet husband has done all the laundry... and I haven't put it away. I will get to it all... it just may take a bit.... But I wanted to start with the birth story of my newest little man. WARNING: there is a bloody picture or two. It is a birth story :)

 I had been having Braxton Hicks contractions with this pregnancy since around 17 weeks. About the same time I started having them with Quinn. At that point they were very irregular and mild. As my pregnancy progressed I began having more frequent BH contractions. Around 34 weeks I started to have them quite often but again, I did with Quinn as well. Coming into my 36 week appointment I really only wanted to know one thing-- could I travel to St. Louis to be in my cousin Skye's wedding? I had no doubt I would be able to be in it, I just wanted my doctor to check my cervix to be on the safe side since I would be traveling for the whole weekend and standing a lot. She wasn't going to but since I was supposed to go out of town, she decided to. Well to both of our surprise, I was 3 cm and 60-70% effaced. I was completely shocked and thrown for a loop. I was 3 cm when my doctor accidentally broke my water with Quinn at 39 weeks. How could I possibly be 3cm at 36 weeks (Technically I was like 35 and 5 days). She and I talked and she recommended that I stay in town and miss the wedding. I was heartbroken and really wanted to be there as a bridesmaid for my cousin! I wanted to see her get married! But I knew deep down this was the right decision. Even as I was sitting in the doctors office I started to have some back pain. A new kind of pain that was different than the BH I had been having. I knew something was up. So I left the appointment freaked out about going into labor in the next day or two. After checking me, I started to have lots of cramping and back pain along with more regular BH. I was convinced it was going to happen ASAP. It didn't even cross my mind for hours that this baby would be early if he was born then. I was honestly just SO excited to go into labor and meet my son. I was so excited to be done with this pregnancy and all the stress that came with it. I wanted my healthy son in my arms.

Fast forward to my 37 week appointment. I was technically 36 and 5 days. Over the last week I had my mom come over multiple times because I thought I was going into labor. I had been up a couple times overnight because I was so uncomfortable from my contractions and thought it had to be the day! All this led me to believe I could walk into this appointment and she would check me and I would be 5 cm and 90% effaced. Didn't happen. I was crushed when she told me that I was EXACTLY the same as last week. There was literally no change at all. She told me, "Whatever you seem to be feeling doesn't seem to be enough to change your cervix." Basically I heard, "Ignore whatever you are feeling until you are truly on the ground with contractions."

That night I was tossing and turning again with uncomfortable contractions but I continued to ignore them with more confidence. In the morning I got ready for the Mom's group that Quinn and I go to on Thursdays. I was having regular contractions... but nothing new. MAYBE a little more regular than normal but that's it. I snapped a picture and put it on Instagram. I was SO frustrated that I was still pregnant after so many days of contractions. Didn't think that would be the last pregnant picture I would have!

I went to Real Moms (a mom's group) at 146th and Hazel Dell. On the way I called my friend Jess to ask how long I could have contractions like this and not go into labor. She had them for weeks. Awesome. Strangely, she got the same call and the same question from Heather when she was in labor.

While the speaker was talking, I started to notice that my contractions were becoming a little stronger. After about 20 or so minutes, I told Heather and she asked if I was timing them. I wasn't.. but I was sure that they were frequent. After a couple more minutes, I decided I probably should time them. I was right. They were about a minute long and coming every 2 or so minutes. I thought about it a bit and decided that just in case this was real, if I wanted to get home with Quinn and get my stuff together, I probably should leave. I got up to leave and couldn't stand easily through a contraction. I got Quinn and my friend Jourdan helped me get Quinn to the car. There was no way I could carry him and we needed to get in the car quickly. I almost left my phone at Grace-- Heather had to run it out. She mentioned that she was probably leaving too. We had previously talked about her taking pictures of my labor, but she had a 1 month old and a 2 year old. I was NOT expecting her to do that. But she called Christian and told him what was going on. Amazingly, he was able to come home and stay with Henry and Caroline. So Heather was on her way home too with both kids to meet Christian.

On the way home first I called my mom to tell her to meet me at home so she could take Quinn and then called Aaron to do so as well. Then I proceeded to get turned around and add about 10 minutes to my drive and then get stuff behind an accident in Meridian. By that time I was breathing through my contractions and I had a little mini me in the back seat breathing along with me. I was stressed about getting home!

I got home and immediately noticed that I had "bloody show". It freaked me out! We ran around and got out the door in about 15 minutes. I hardly had anything packed but we were scared about how fast my contractions were coming. They were still every 2 minutes and getting stronger each time. I stopped a couple times walking into the hospital but at that point the pain was manageable.



We checked in around 11:30 and they checked me. I was only 4 cm. WHAT!? They considered sending me home. WHAT?! But my contractions were strong and frequent enough that they decided that I should stay. After getting checked in my room, Heather came. At this point I had already ditched my loose plan of trying to go natural. No. Freaking. Way. I was not really having a huge break. I was having contractions still every 2 minutes for about a minute each.




It took me a whole 20 or so minutes to decide that the anesthesiologist couldn't come soon enough.
I'll tell you right now-- Heather is the strongest person I've ever met. The way she went through labor without any medication and just breathing through her contractions-- WOAH. I was squeezing Aaron's hand so hard while sitting on a birthing ball and not saying the nicest words either.



I'm not sure what time I got the epidural... my guess is around 1:30 or so.




They checked me right afterwards and I was 6-7 cm. The next couple hours I tried to relax. The pain relief was AMAZING. I felt like a new person. We were all smiles after my epidural.


 Heather was so thoughtful and remembered that I wanted to make little treats for the nurses. In her race to the hospital, she printed labels at home and bought treats! So while we waited, she got crafty and made them for me!





After two hours they decided to check me again. I think I was 9cm. Around 4pm they checked again. I was 10cm and baby was almost coming out! I put on a song (Oceans by Hillsong United) that I have loved recently to calm my nerves; this long journey was about to come to an end. They set things up quickly.




 I pushed through two contractions and out came out little baby boy! I pushed for a whole 4 minutes!


I was overcome with emotion. My child was finally safely in my arms. I felt so much relief. I could just feel months and months of stress wash away. He was here!




Theodore Jack Reddington was born on October 17th at 4:26pm. He weighed a whopping 7 pounds 13 ounces 3 weeks early! He was 21 1/4 inches. And to me, he looked exactly like his brother. It was so sweet to finally meet this new little life.





I could write an entire post on reflections over the pregnancy and delivery. But in the end, God granted me peace throughout most of my pregnancy, a loving supportive husband that always stood by my side and He brought me through the toughest thing I've ever done in my life. I was so worn out emotionally during parts of my pregnancy, it wasn't enjoyable most of the time. Throughout I just wanted to see "redemption win" as a song I love says.... and I KNOW that God doesn't "owe" me that after what I went through with Stella, but this time, Teddy's life was part of his plan and for that I am and will always be eternally grateful.



Thank you so much to Heather for beautifully capturing one of the most joyful events of my life. Having these photos to look back on bring me so much happiness and remind me of all the details of the day. It's such a wonderful gift. Thank you Heather!

At this point in the story this sweet little boy was unnamed. I still can't believe we didn't have something picked. It's just not like us! But we just hadn't come across something that we loved and could agree on. It would be 2 more days... and hours away from my discharge before we named him. We decided on Theodore Jack Reddington. Jack was decided for a long time. My mom's brother Uncle Jack passed away this year and when we found out we were having a boy, I immediately knew that I wanted Jack's name and memory to be a part of my son's life. My Uncle Jack was one of the most fearless, faithful and loving Christians I've ever known. He also was filled with more joy than I knew could fit inside one person. I have many stories that I want to tell Teddy about Jack. I hope they inspire and challenge him the same way that Jack did while he was with us. Teddy's first name was what gave us trouble. But in the end we chose Theodore for a couple reasons- Aaron has always loved it, it's a solid name that has been around forever, the meaning "God's gift" rings so true for us after loosing Stella and we loved the nickname Teddy. After meeting Teddy and FINALLY getting to soak him in while in the NICU-- we knew Theodore fit perfectly.




Theodore Jack Reddington, welcome to our family. We have waited for you. Our hearts have been yours since we found out you were in my belly. We love you so very much.



To be continued.... Teddy's NICU stay.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Pictures: 16-20 Months

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These are definitely out of order but just wanted to get them uploaded! Most are from my phone but there are some new ones! He definitely spend a lot of time hanging with his bestie Henry! And also a lot of time being a goof ball and we love it! :)

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Follow Up

I guess I just want to follow up my previous post with a few things. I really didn't want to come off sad or unhappy in the last post. I am neither. I am so very happy with my life and all the blessings I have been given. I am so thankful for my family, my friends and the chance to be pregnant again. Overall if you were to ask me, outside of the obvious things about this pregnancy, I truly do understand that miracle that pregnancy is and I really do love being pregnant. The loss of Stella took some of the magic out of it, but it's really still a beautiful thing. I love being mother to Quinn and I love that I get to basically stay home with him but that I also get to work a couple days a month. I love my husband and the chance to share this life with my best friend. I really honestly can't complain about a single thing in my day to day life. It's wonderful. It's just that if I were to focus on my pregnancy all the time, I would tend to be less happy and more stressed. So in the end, I try to just focus on the blessings in my life (which are way too many to count) and not write about pregnancy. But when I do write about pregnancy, unfortunately there are some less happy thoughts there now. I hope that all of you who read this know these things about me already, but if not, I hope that this will clarify that I am not a sad mess here that thinks her life is just lame and I want to press fast forward on it. I love my life and I love being able to be pregnant. It's just hard sometimes. :)

I just felt like I needed to clarify :)

20 Months and 24 week Update

I wrote this when Quinn was exactly 20 months-- He is now 21 months and is SO different but I will save the changes for his 2 year old post! (EEK! How is that close?!) I will get a post up soon of pictures of Quinn during this time. I just want this up since it's been sitting here written for a while!

Weight: 27 lbs (60th percentile)
Height: 34.5 inches (85th percentile)

Schedule
7:30-8 Wakes
1:30-3:30-4 Naps (Usually 2-3 hours)
8:00 Bedtime

Eating: Somewhat picky. He definitely eats enough things to get most of his nutrients and keep him growing but I would say he is very far from adventurous. He has tried apply juice many times and doesn't like it! He says yucky! I'm loving this because otherwise he definitely has a sweet tooth! It's a fight to get him to eat any veggies but fruits are always a favorite.

Talking: Too many words to count. Trying to put two words together, but not that often. Knows EVERYTHING we say. We have to spell things so that he doesn't know what we are saying. We are working on counting but he's just not into it. Aaron plays a game with him after dinner where he asks if he wants one cookie or two cookies, two cookies or three cookies, etc and he always picks the greater amount so we know that he does know some of his numbers and that two is more than one but he is just not interested in counting. After he picks the number of cookies he wants he always says "Elmo!" because Aaron always does The Count from Elmo and says "One, Wah-ha-ha, Two- Wah-ha-ha" We joke that he will go to school counting like that.

 Playing: LOVES to be outside. Loves to play in the backyard, to take walks and talk about all the cars, trucks, and bulldozers he sees. Loves the baby pool at the Y-- this has been amazing this summer. I would almost pay the whole year fees just to have access to the pool in the summer. It's my favorite activity by far and we go at least once a week if not more. He has started to take swim lessons with Aaron on Saturdays. Aaron says he is basically indifferent to them. He'd mostly rather just do what he wants and get out of the deep pool to play instead of following instructions to kick and blow bubbles, etc. But he will do what is asked of him, just not with enthusiasm.  Funny kid :) Loves to play chase with friends (especially Henry) and with Daddy. He is very social once he's comfortable in a situation. I always find him up in someone else's business when we are at the pool or the park. Slightly embarrassing but I guess it could be worse! He wants to be in the middle of where the action is or where there are kids gathered. He tends to want to play with older kids more than younger kids or kids his age.

I absolutely love being around him at this age almost all days. He rarely will have a day here and there when I can't wait til his nap but usually I just love his company. He is my little buddy and I love to do things with him everyday! He is just so sweet and fun at this age! I love watching him learn and hearing him ask new things or say new words. He loves to see new places and meet people and usually to try new things. He's just so funny too! As much as I am looking forward to him having a new brother, I will admit that I am more looking forward to when his little brother is at least a year old and I can play with both of them like I get to play with Quinn now!

Pregnancy Update:

When Quinn was 20 months, I was 20 weeks pregnant. Now that he is 21 months, I'm 24 weeks pregnant and will just stick to the updating from 24 weeks! :)
I haven't written really anything about my pregnancy because this one is just different and hard. The pregnancy itself was really difficult at the beginning. I had a lot of cramping and bleeding which led to a lot of ultrasounds and extra stuff. It was really the last thing any pregnant woman wants during her first trimester, let alone one that has just lost a baby. But I got through it, and after around 12 weeks I have felt like I've felt during my other two pregnancies. I usually have easy pregnancies and this one (after the first trimester) has been the same. So I guess I just haven't felt the need to document it too much because it really hasn't been much different pregnancy symptom wise.
At 24 weeks we have yet to touch the third bedroom that will be the nursery but I do have plans on what I want to do and a Pinterest board filled with ideas :) We also bought a crib off Craigslist which led to a mini breakdown on my part because it was just such a big and permanent purchase when thinking about if this baby will actually be here in the end. It's been really hard for me to buy much at all which is completely different than my other pregnancies. I still have some of Stella's baby girl clothes hanging in our extra closet that I was unable take back that remind me not to think ahead too much. I have bought a couple outfits because they have been on sale but each one I know that I can take back easily if things don't work out and somehow that makes me feel better. We're trying to make progress on the name front but there just doesn't seem to be much conversation about it and there really isn't a ton that both of us like! So we are just kinda waiting to figure that one out! :)

I am so thankful for this baby boy moving around so much all day now and reminding me that everything is okay right now. I am also thankful for my doctor who has done anything and everything that I have wanted to make me feel comfortable. There's only so much she can do, but it has been so wonderful to feel supported! Also, Aaron has been amazing during this pregnancy and has been to every single one of my appointments with me. I know that we both are just so very nervous that this won't work out.

I don't think I'll update much more on this pregnancy. Many one or two more times. Really it's for multiple reasons. 1. I just want this pregnancy to be over and this baby to be in my arms. I used to feel bad in my other pregnancies when I said I wanted to rush things, but I've realized that as magical and wonderful pregnancy is, it all really doesn't matter unless there is a baby in your arms at the end. That's what matters most. I think before there was this connection between the pregnancy and the baby that made me feel like I wasn't being a good mom if I didn't document or cherish each second of the pregnancy. But now, I fully understand that just because you are pregnant, it doesn't mean you are going to meet that baby. So I don't feel bad wishing away this pregnancy anymore. I just want to be at the end. 2. If something were to happen, having a ton of blog posts written during my pregnancy would just make it much harder to try to move on. 3. I already feel so very vulnerable during this pregnancy because I know all to well that I am not in control. Blogging a lot about it makes me feel even more vulnerable and it's just not something that sounds fun right now!

So for those of you who have been wondering why I haven't been blogging about this sweet baby boy in my belly, those are my reasons. :) Don't worry, once this baby is in my arms there will constant updates and pictures :) I just gotta get to that point!







Sunday, April 28, 2013

My Due Date

My thoughts are somewhat scattered, they are high and low but I just wanted to have the collection of them written together. I know that Stella is watching over us and I just hope that she can appreciate this post as well. 

Today was supposed to be a day filled with either anticipation or joy. But instead it's one filled with sadness and grief. It's filled with a new uncertainty of the future and a reminder of the pain of last December. I've been thinking about what I wanted to write and have to remember on this day for about a month now. I really wanted to be enthusiastic and positive and filled with hope, but there has been some doubt, pain and fear that has crept in. Yesterday I had another paragraph below this talking about all my hurt, but today, it just doesn't feel right. I want to reflect the sweetness that I feel when I think of Stella. Pure innocence and sweetness only a little baby girl can bring. Today I'm going to focus on that. Yesterday I would have told you that it wasn't possible, but today, it is.

I stumbled across this song recently. Although it's really nothing earth shattering the way of song writing or even at all that noteworthy in terms of a "quality" song, it really helped me shed some positive light on the loss of Stella.




This definitely isn't the end of our relationship as mother and daughter and I will always, always carry her with me. I also just think of Stella when I listen to this. If she would have been anything like me, she would be rocking to Carrie Underwood from her early years right along with me. Carrie is JUST the right music for tween and teenage girls to sing along with (and the teenage girl in me as well).

When I think of what Stella looks like in heaven, of how old she is and who she is, I have always pictured her as older. I imagine that when we arrive in heaven in God's presence, we are able to become fully who he created each one of us to be, dropping all the sin and baggage and picking up and actualizing all the gifts that He gave us as individuals. I imagine Stella as a beautiful, caring, wise and strong woman in heaven. I have never imagined getting to heaven and looking for my little baby to hold. Rather, I see myself getting to heaven and being able to hug Stella and talk to her and learn about who she is through her own words. I imagine being able to see all the gifts God has blessed her with and just be able to soak her essence in. Who she truly is, who God finely crafted her to be. Isn't that truly what every parent wishes of their child? To be able to see them so clearly as God created them to be, not clouded with our human thoughts or this world's pressures. 

I read this to Quinn sometimes, but I know my mom bought the book for us with Stella in mind and I can't help but think of her when I read this. In the short time I was carrying her, my heart grew and made such a special place for her. My love for her will always be with me... and I hope she knows that it will always be with her. 

Wherever You Are.. My Love Will Find You
By Nancy Tillman

I wanted you more
than you will ever know,
so I sent love to follow
wherever you go.

It's as high as you wish it. It's quick as an elf!
You'll never outgrow it...it stretches itself!

So climb any mountain...
climb up to the sky!
My love will find you.
My love can fly!

Make a big splash! Go out on a limb!
My love will find you. My love can swim!

It never gets lost, never fades, never ends...
if you're working...
or playing...
or sitting with friends.

You can dance 'til you're dizzy...
paint 'til you're blue...
There's no place, not one,
that my love can't find you.

And if someday you're lonely
or sometime you're sad,
or you strike out at baseball,
or think you've been bad...

just lift up your face, feel the wind in your hair.
That's me, my sweet baby, my love is right there.

In the green of the grass...in the smell of
the sea...in the clouds floating by...
at the top of a tree... in the sound
crickets make at the end of the day...

"You are loved. You are loved. You are loved," they all say.

My love is so high, and so wide and
so deep, it's always right there, even
when you're asleep.

So hold your head high
and don't be afraid to march to the front
of your own parade.

If you're still my small babe
or you're all the way grown,
my promise to you
is you're never alone.

You're my angel, my darling,
my star... and my love will find you,
wherever you are.

I love you, my sweet, sweet Stella.

On Friday night we were able to light a few pink lanterns to remember Stella with our close friends. Heather was so sweet and set it all up without us knowing. Even though getting the lanterns up was kind of disastrous at times, it all worked out and left Aaron and I with such sweet memories! Thank you friends!






 "He will cover you with His feathers and under His wings you will find refuge." Psalm 91:4

While Aaron and I are still learning how to grow from this and what the purpose of this pain will be in our lives... we have been shown one thing so clearly...that God provides. Specifically for us it has been an overwhelming provision of love and support from our family and friends. We have seen his comfort and love shine through so many hard times through the support of our loved ones. And although we still have a lot to navigate in terms of how this part of our story will affect our lives in the future, we are so very thankful for the love, comfort and provision that God has shown us from the first hours of this journey.




Monday, February 25, 2013

How Precious Life Is...

Stumbled upon this song on another friend's blog that has also lost a baby. It's such a sweet song and I am so thankful that I found it.

Today I just really miss Stella.


Here is her blog post.

 Click Here.

Monday, February 18, 2013

16 Months

For some reason our pediatrician appointment wasn't scheduled until 16 months... so that's why I'm doing Quinn's update now! I've decided that at the very least I need to do a blog update on all things Quinn for each doctors appointment! Which means that this may be a lengthy post because it's been 4 whole months since I've updated!

We have had a busy couple months! Quinn is growing and changing so much these days. He does something or says something new almost every day. And I am proud to say that he FINALLY shows that he prefers me and even actually misses me when I'm gone! :) When we lost Stella, Quinn stayed with my parents for a night and was really weird when I came home. He was almost scared of me and didn't want me to hold him. It was really hurtful but I knew that he just knew something was wrong. It's amazing how intuitive he was during that time! But after a couple days being home he was back to normal!

He is so much fun to play with and makes me laugh all the time! He is SUCH a happy boy most of the time and just wants to play and run around. He loves playing outside and we take advantage of every day that it makes it past the mid 40's and go outside and play as long as we can!

I've had too many days to count where I am made painfully aware that Quinn is NOT a baby and is definitely a toddler. He is very opinionated and loves to make it known. He has a stubborn streak and is always down for throwing tantrums if he doesn't get what he wants! I've been trying to just ignore them and most of the time that does the trick. He has started to throw things and hit when he's frustrated or tired. SO we have had to get more structured and serious with our discipline. It's an awkward process right now because half the time he doesn't understand that he did anything wrong and the other half I feel like he doesn't listen at all, laughs and hits/throws again. The pediatrician told me that she definitely started time outs with her children at this age so I tried that yesterday and he had NO idea what I was doing and why I was trying to keep him in the corner. HA. But we will keep trying. We have signed him up for "school" in the fall. He will go to a Mother's Day Out program one day a week from 9-2:30. I am looking forward to him learning social norms and having more structure to that day! Mostly I think he will LOVE it so much and that is why we signed him up!

He got his first haircut a week or so after his first birthday! He was really good--just needed a bit of distraction so that he wouldn't grab the scissors! Since then, I've cut it myself. There have been better haircuts than others but it's free! 




We've tried to make use of the monster costume. The first pictures of him in it are before he was one and the last are just a week or so ago! He's gotten so big!





Here is a family picture from Thanksgiving.




We went to see Santa and it was a bust. He loved Santa while he was standing in line, but as soon as Aaron tried to give him to Santa he freaked out! Poor guy! But the pictures are great! 


Here is Quinn in front of the Christmas tree.



 We didn't take that many pictures on Christmas sadly. It was a weird Christmas. I just knew something was wrong with Stella so our minds were elsewhere that day. But here are a couple pictures.



Here are more pictures around 14 months. Most of the time I get photos on my phone so some are below.






 He is still obsessed with our remotes but now he is sadly also obsessed with the tv and turning it on.


He stands like this all the time. We think it's hilarious.

Here are some more pictures at around 15 months.




And lastly this is his new face. It's what Aaron and I call his "Whatcha talkin' about Willis?" face.

Here's a link in case you want to compare... I think he still has some work to do.


Stats:
Weight: 25 lbs 4oz (55th Percentile) Height: 32.5 inches (80th Percentile) Head: 19 inches (75th Percentile) Still tall and thin like his dad.

Likes: eating things while walking around, eating at the table, eating with forks and spoons, using a plate for his food, being held, being chased around with any loud toy, being tickled, music and DANCING all the time, rough housing in any way-- he is DEFINITELY a boy, he would wrestle around on the floor or be thrown around or spun around allll day long. He always wants "more" and he signs it over and over and then starts crying if we stop physically playing with him. It gets pretty exhausting. He loves playing outside.

Dislikes: Getting dressed, diaper changes, putting his coat on, having ANYTHING taken away from him, his stroller, his car seat, his high chair unless he really likes what he is going to eat, the blender (too loud and always makes him cry unless I'm holding him).

Favorite Foods: anything he can carry around and eat- recently mini pita pockets or half slices of bread, crackers and his snack cup filled with freeze dried peas or cheerios, bananas, chicken nuggets, tater tots, broccoli, sweet potatoes, apple slices on some days. We are still dairy and soy free and will continue until 18 months when I will probably retry both. We may do allergy testing at 2 years old if he is still reacting but we are already doing what they would suggest and he is obviously growing well so I'm in no hurry to get him tested.

Teeth: 12. He got all four molars over the past couple months which brought a lot of crying and waking at night. We give him Motrin anytime we think he may wake up during the night and it usually helps a ton. I think that his canine teeth are coming in as well but they haven't broken through the gums.

Sleep: He is still taking two naps that last between 1:15-2 hours each. He has had two days where he only took one nap and while he did totally fine during the day, he slept terrible at night. SO I think it may have just thrown off his schedule and it showed me that he probably isn't ready to drop the nap. He goes to bed between 7:30 and 8 and usually wakes between 7-8 in the morning. I still am SO thankful for how well he sleeps. The few times he does wake up, he either puts himself back to sleep or if I go and rock him for a couple minutes he lays down with no problem after.  

New Words: He almost is saying too many words to count... but not always on his own, usually when he repeats what we are saying. But here are some new ones; belly button, eye, nose, ear, head, brush, walk, rock, apple, snack, paci, shakes his head "No" to most things and nods "yes" when he wants something. Still isn't actually saying yes and no that frequently. If he knows he's not supposed to do something he will show me by halfway doing it and then shaking his head "no" while looking at me. He tries to say most things we ask him to say or he wants to say but most of them are pretty "rough" and need some work. But I can understand a lot of them. Can make snake, monkey, cat and pig noises along with the ones he already could do at 1 year. 

New Skills: Running, throwing balls really well, throwing tantrums complete with laying down on the floor and kicking his feet, holding his arms up like "I don't know" when I ask where something is or when we are looking for something. Hiding toys behind his back or under himself and pulling it out to show us. He does this weird thing where he puts things under his chin to hold them-- anything- food, toys, phones, crayons. We don't get it. He loves to mimic me- he will wipe up any spill, brush his hair, use my makeup brush on his face, brush his teeth, talk on the phone, and dance! He loves the bath but always gets in trouble by the end because he loves to throw cups or buckets with water in them out of the bathtub.