Sam | 12 Months

sam_12_months_onesieThe Great Sambino. You are now a year old. I can hardly believe a whole year has gone by and at the same time, it was one of the longest years ever! Adjusting to a life with two rambunctious boys who feed off of each other (good and bad) has been an adventure, to say the least.

You are now 21 lbs, you’re in the 80th percentile for most everything and you continually amaze your pediatrician with how much you’re doing. You babble ALL. THE. TIME. You can point to what you want, throw temper tantrums, “hum” to yourself, walk, say “Mama”, “Nana”, Baa-baa (bubba)”, “ah-duh” (all done), and “ahhhhhhhh!” which is the universal word for “pay attention to me and what I’m saying!”

You’ve surprised me at your ability to play independently for so long. You love having someone play next to you, but you already show your preference for doing things yourself, your way. It cracks me up to see you get upset when I undo what you just did. You express you disappointment with grunts and “ehh”, while you toss whatever it is that I disrupted.

Your love for your Dad is blatant. I’m not jealous at all, as you can tell. You clearly favor him and it’s so sweet. You and your brother both LOVE him tremendously. You clamor for time with him any chance you can get. He’s funny, fun, creative, attentive. Who wouldn’t want to be with him all the time?

Your favorite foods are:

  • Sweet potatoes
  • Grilled asparagus
  • Blueberries
  • Apples and Apple sauce
  • Chicken nuggets
  • Any kind of cracker or bread (aka, pizza)
  • Popcorn

You recently switched to whole milk and love it, so long as it warmed to the correct temperature — otherwise you protest by arching your back and sobbing. You also tend to do this when your milk is finished.

You love to:

  • Dance
  • Sing
  • Play with cars
  • Chase your brother
  • Be outside
  • Eat
  • Take this a part/test their limitations

You take two naps a day and you’re one of the easiest babies to put to sleep. You are fine with rocking or not. Cuddling or not. Singing or not. At any point if I decide you’re too wiggly and you just need to rest in your crib until you fall asleep I kiss your head, lay you down and you protest for a maximum of 2 minutes. Then, you sing yourself to sleep. I’m sure it’s just a phase but it’s oh so sweet.

You are currently getting your one year molars which has you drooling like a bulldog and nawing like a puppy.

We didn’t have any crazy adventures this month, but rather we really enjoyed the “going through the motions” of every day life. Church on Sundays, naps in the afternoon, playing in the backyard, trips to the park, working in the backyard, meeting up with friends, making meals, doing chores, and learning to be together as a family. It was nice. The biggest adventure this month was your First Birthday! We had some family and close friends come for a few hours and celebrate your day with us. We had your favorite food (pizza) and a pop corn bar with fun mix-ins, a pinata, and of course cake. Your mom tried not to go too crazy with the decor and games and such. She can get a little nuts. Between preparing for Good Friday service and Easter service, it helped keep me in check.

Seeing all these wonderful people here to celebrate you and your one year of life had me all warm and fuzzy inside. You enjoyed your cake and we enjoyed watching the sugar kick in while you ate it.

I look back at a year ago and I try to remember how it felt to hold you, 6 hours after you were born (due to complications for us both from delivery), and I just remember feeling peace. Feeling whole. You were what I needed. You were so little, needed so much attention and care, yet you were so easy and sweet — right from the beginning. God made you perfectly for us, for our family. We are forever grateful to Him for you.

I can’t wait to see how much you grow and change in this coming year. We love you, Sam Sam.



Teddy | 12 Months

Teddy, your are 1 year old today! What an amazing year it’s been. You came into this world with bright eyed wonder. You have always taken in everything with great care and you are always trying to figure things out — how to say a word, how something works, where something is coming from. You are fearless and curious. You are intentional and sweet. You love being outside and going on adventures. You love singing and dancing and learning. You are everything I’ve prayed for and more. How could I possibly have been so lucky to be chosen by God to be your Mom?

This past month you learned how to say “buh”, “juh” and “joo”. These aren’t exactly words but they are definitely milestones towards you learning how to say, “Boone” “Jonna” and “Ju-Ju”. You LOVE dancing and it so fun to have daily dance parties with you to some of your favorite songs. You’ve started to watch a little Mister Rodger’s Neighborhood and Sesame Street. Those are two shows I loved watching growing up. You love to help out around the house. You like unloading the dishwasher, helping me put the clothes in the washer/dryer, flushing the toilet, walking the dog, chasing the vacuum cleaner, and throwing away the trash. It takes me a lot longer to get things done these days, but I love having you part of my tasks every day. You bring me so much joy.

You’ve made it to one, bubba bear. You’ve grown so much and Daddy’s and my hearts have grown more and more each day in love for you. We are so blessed and proud to have you. Happy Birthday!

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Wow! What a month. Teddy got to experience something this month that we definitely weren’t expecting. SNOW! We went up to Big Bear for a family wedding and it snowed! Teddy was so curious. Winter and snow are some of my most favorite things. I was so bummed we weren’t able to experience it this past Christmas, so I was probably more excited than Teddy when we woke up to a winter wonderland. When we were all ready, we took Teddy to the “Teddy Bear Cafe” for breakfast, because, well duh.

The wedding was beautiful. I had the privilege of being the photographer, which was a blast. We are so happy for you Bobby and Jennifer! Thank you for letting us be a part of your day. Gotta love those Lopezes!

We ALSO got to celebrate Auntie Jonna’s birthday this past month! We visited the new Santa Barbara Public Market for lunch and cupcakes, then we went to the beach for a little bit of cloud watching. And of course, dinner at Los Agaves.

The next weekend, Alex and I got to go on a dating flash back adventure. We traveled back to our hometown in Riverside where it all began. We visited some of our favorite spots there and in Huntington, Laguna Beach, and South Coast Plaza. We ate great food, took a nap during the day, and best of all we were able to have hours of conversation and time together with just each other. Don’t get me wrong, we love our Bubba bear and we missed him so much over that weekend, but it is so important for us to remember why we love each other and what we love about each other. So much of our time is spent on loving our little guy, that it’s easy to “forget” about needing to love each other too. Time away is a good way for us to reconnect and talk. We had a blast re-creating old pictures of our dating years, reading letters we had written to each other and listening to old c.d.s and mixed tapes. Teddy got to spend the WHOLE weekend with his Nana, Papa, Auntie Uncle, and his cousins. They took the train to San Juan and had fun adventures at the beach. We met up with them at Dos Lagos on our way home to capture one last picture with Teddy from when Alex proposed to me almost 7 years ago.

I also was able to celebrate my first mother’s day this year. We drove down to Riverside on Friday night to spend some time with Nana and Grandma on Saturday. We wanted to make sure they knew just how special they are to us. We took them out to eat, and bought them chocolates, Teddy even helped me make them bouquets of flowers. We drove home Saturday night and in the morning I got to have breakfast with my boys before church. After a great church service we went to the beach. It was SO WINDY, but Teddy had a blast. I didn’t care what we did, I just loved being with my boys.

The later part of this month was spent focusing all our efforts in helping Alex finish up his last classes, final exams, and papers. He has worked so hard over the last 18 months to finish his degree and last Saturday (the 17th) he walked to receive his bachelor’s degree in Psychology. We couldn’t have been prouder of him. Later, we gathered at one of our favorite hang out spots, The Stonehaus. The kids “played” bocce ball, while we enjoyed baguettes, food, drinks, and the wonderful company.

The NEXT DAY, we celebrated Teddy’s 1st birthday at Borchard Park in Newbury Park. It’s one of our most favorite parks. It’s right near the gym and our church meets there during the summer once a month for “church in the park”. We had balloons, streamers, toys, food and bubbles. Teddy had a blast eating his cake and playing with all the ladies his friends.

This time last year, we were holding our little (big) boy in our arms not knowing what to do with him. Now, I still don’t know what to do with this crazy, energetic, independent guy. He keeps me on my toes and tugs at my heart daily.

Happy Birthday, Teddy Bear!