20 Months Young!


Happy 20 months today, Harmon!  Leaving the baby-teens behind!  In the past few days it seems like you’ve suddenly crossed an invisible threshold from baby to true toddler.  I realize this is my fourth go, but I feel like I’ve never had a toddler before for some reason…you are  veryveryveryVERY good at leaving a path of crazy in your wake despite your overall quiet & timid nature.  In fact, one of your favorite things right now is to empty every single playing card from the giant storage bag all over the living room floor—all these cards used to be in their own decks & spaces until someone rendered that organization pointless. 😉  I am very, very, very, VERY tired by the end of a day.  Bone-dead tired, body & soul, but, Harmon, you make our family complete & we couldn’t imagine life without your tiny hobbit ways!

More likes at 20 months…

  • MAMA!!!! I don’t need to elaborate.  Love you!
  • BALLS! You want all the balls in the entire world, I think.  You love to kick balls & catch balls & you’re still creepily good at catching any size ball that is tossed at you.  You probably need to be a keeper in soccer.  Or attend a bunch of baseball games & start a foul ball collection.
  • CHIPS! Oh my goodness, you are still an addict for chips, but since your diet is no-dairy and no-wheat, tortilla chips, Fritos plain corn chips, and Lay’s Poppables are about all you can stomach.  And with only SIX teeth still (less than 1% of kids your age have six teeth, by the way) eating anything is tricky, let alone something like a hard chip.  We give you tiny, tiny bites or chew them up mama-bird-style for you (I know, I know, gross, but it works).
  • HOLDING! By this I mean you want to hold all the babies yourself & all the animals on our Iowa hobby farm.  You say the word “hold” very well & clearly & ask to “hold” stuff all the time.  When I stopped watching my daycare baby “Sissy” (who, at 6 months of age, was heavier than & almost as tall as you!) you lost your chance to “hold” a baby on a fairly regular basis…you’ll just have to wait for Auntie Ellie’s next little one!  Hopefully by then you’ll be bigger than the average 9 month old & can actually do all this “holding” you think you’re doing! 😉
  • OUTSIDE! You would live outside in our yard if we let you.  You especially like to climb up & down hills, but have a particular fascination with the dirt hill in front of the chicken coop.  The hill that is full of chicken poo & dirt & old stumps & too steep for your abilities…of course that’s the hill you like the best. xo
  • CARS, the movie! You only actually seem to like watching the opening sequence wherein the cars race around the track & Sheryl Crow sings.  Then you lose interest.  You also like the movie Moana to an extent—if someone is not singing onscreen, however, you’re done, which brings me to…
  • MUSIC! You are still our little music man!  Makes me so happy how much you love music.  You love to dance & bob your head & shake your bum to music of all sorts.  Hopefully we can get you enrolled in a toddler music class this fall…how are you that old already???
  • DEER! You LOVE looking at deer in the yard out the windows.  Birds, too.  You like to listen to birds when we’re outside & you’ll cock your ear & point up.
  • BIKING! Daddy fixed the baby seat on the back of my bike up & now we take you for rides up & down the long driveway on a fairly consistent basis in the afternoon/evenings.  You seem to relish it despite the scenery repetition.

More random likes: picking out your clothes from the bottom drawer of the dresser, throwing away your huge morning diaper after being changed & then high-fiving me, sucking on ice in a rag (like your sister June who taught you to do this!), picking grass clumps from the garden while we weed (you like to help!), wiping the floors with a wipe (again, being helpful to mama),  listening to books (favorite books tend to be about chickens, trucks/cars, animals), blowing the dish soap bubbles all over the kitchen, going upstairs to play in your siblings’ rooms (I think it really bugs you that you can’t go up there whenever you want), climbing up & on & all over stuff—you’re a climber!, petting the cats—usually while sitting in a dirt pile, wearing hats & socks & shoes (because you think this means you’re going outside), putting lotion on your face all by yourself (due to your eczema, you have a lot of lotion application going on 24/7), banging on smartphones/iPods/iPads/laptops—but watching home videos of yourself & your siblings is your favorite technological pastime.

A few things you do NOT seem to like: WATER.  You don’t like swimming pools, sprinklers, showers, lakes, or even the bathtub if mama is not bathing with you.  You will not sleep for long without mama or, frankly, sleep at all.  We co-sleep all night & you continue to nurse all night long, so much nursing, in fact, that my period has still not returned, but you’re so very tiny & eat so very little food that breastmilk is probably 50% or more of your diet, so I’m not doing anything to wean you yet.  You won’t nap for very long, which drives me crazy, & you still require two naps a day, which is also driving me crazy.  I’ve tried moving you to one long nap in the afternoon many many MANY times & we’re making no progress.  One nap doesn’t work yet.  Teeth-brushing practically puts you into a tantrum.  Hair-brushing is pretty awful, too, but this seems to be a common theme in this family.  The car seat is also your nemesis.  Riding in the car is generally a very bad thing in your world.  Now that Coralee can drive herself to school and sports on a school permit, however, life in this department has improved a hundredfold for you!

I’m not sure on your stats, I’ll try to weigh & measure you this week & update this post.

Words: You are not talking much, but your babbling seems to be exploding suddenly.  You will try to say most any word we ask you to say, but everything still sounds pretty much the same.  You can make a lot of animal noises—roosters crowing, cats meowing, dogs panting.  You imitate a baby bawling really well (daycare baby helped immensely with this).  You say mama (finally!!!), dada, hold, iwantdat (“I want that” garbled together), datway (“that way”), wawa (water), baba (bottle of almond milk).  You smack your mouth to indicate you’re hungry or when you just want something badly.  You’re actually quite good at communicating in a nonverbal manner.  We can usually figure out what you want without any words…I’m wondering if this will make your speech delayed?  I guess we’ll find out.

Something cute you started doing this week is keeping your head/gaze fixed forward, while rolling your eyes to the side.  Gives me a headache to do it, but you seem to love doing it & usually laugh at yourself when you’re done.

Love you, tiny hobbit!  So very glad you’re here!

 

Halfway!

Harmon was six months on the 1st of June!  I waited to post his six month photos until after his 6-month well child check today.  He weighed 13lbs 8oz on June 1st & today at his appointment he weighed 13lbs 12oz & is 25.5inches long.  His height is hovering just below the 5th percentile for breastfed babies & his weight is under the 1st percentile.  During the last two months I have fretted & worried non-stop about his weight.  I’ve taken him to the lactation clinic multiple times and tried all sorts of ways to try to get him to eat more (& thus gain weight faster)…but, basically, it all boils down to Harmon is just a small person!  He also has a dairy/soy intolerance.  It’s been about two months since I’ve given up eating any dairy at all & we’ve noticed a marked change in his personality, sleeping habits, and gut issues.  His poos are no longer green!  His eczema isn’t raging red!  Life is good!  But, boy oh boy, do I ever miss dairy…I’m a total cliche…I’m from Wisconsin & my favorite food is cheese!  This no-dairy diet, however, sure is good for weight loss.  I’ve never dropped so much weight so quickly in my life.  (I’m fairly certain I’ve blogged about this before, haven’t I??)His hair is getting thicker, but it’s still mostly fuzz.  Sometimes it looks blonde-red & other times a very light brown.

 

We visited the butterfly house at Reiman Gardens in Ames last month as part of June’s birthday gift (June LOVES butterflies!).  I think Harmon was watching the butterflies flit past him in the carrier a few times!

June continues to love her brother “so much” & often a little too much…but Harmon seems to tolerate her antics better every day.

Harmon has been my helper at the nature center in Buchanan County several times now.  He’s a very well behaved volunteer. 🙂
In the morning from about 4AM until 7ish he fusses in his sleep a lot & has to be rocked, bounced, nursed, etc to get those last few hours of sleep in, sleep we both need.We’ve taken to calling him our “Hobbit” due to his small size.  He is so very tiny!  And so cute!  Coralee, Merritt, & I all finished reading The Hobbit recently & watched the Peter Jackson trilogy, so we were mostly influenced in that regard with his new nickname.  We also call him Harmie, Harmonica, HARmione (like Hermione), Little Man, & Little Jerry (he looks like my dad sometimes, we think).We visited the local ER on Memorial Day weekend for what I thought was a choking incident.  I had Brian call 911 as I was convinced he was choking on something (a toy?)–he quit breathing, he was gagging, it was all incredibly scary!  The EMTs checked him out & felt it was not an emergency situation (the incident that prompted me to yell at Brian to call 911 only lasted like ten seconds), but that we should have an X-ray done to rule out anything being swallowed.  Nothing showed up on the X-ray save for a lot of gas…the on-call doctor kept commenting on how much gas he had in his stomach & that she could hear it with her stethoscope, too.  I believe Harmon does have some issues with acid bubbling up & since the non-choking choking incident he has done this no-breathing/gagging thing several more times…scares the dickens out of me every time, too.He was in a fairly good mood despite being up way past his 7pm bedtime.  Poor little man!He’s wearing a tee (above) that I wore as a baby from Matagorda, TX.  My dad was born & grew up in Matagorda County.  I hope we get to take Harmon (& June!) to the beach in Matagorda someday.  My older kids ask to go again all the time.Merritt & June have had swimming lessons every morning for the past week in town.  Harmon & I hang out in the car mostly due to the HEAT around here.  A heat index of 100’F is too much for a baby!Harmon & I like to hang out on the back porch in the morning before the other kids wake up.  We listen to the birds & have our coffee & toast with mashed avocado on it.  Harmon has been “eating” little bites of avocado, carrot, & potato for about a week now.  He’s not really into it at all….mostly he spits it out or wipes it all over himself.  His feet in this photo crack me up, for some reason.  Those toes!  He is very good at using both his feet to manipulate toys, actually.  He also continues grabbing things with his left hand much more so than his right.  His right is what we call “the beater”–he hits/bangs/beats on stuff (my back!) with his right hand a lot.  June used to pat people who picked her up on the back, too, like Harmon has started doing to me now. ❤ ❤ ❤

Harmon has a friend a few miles down the road who was born three weeks after him!  They like to hang out together while his mother & I “knit”…Merritt says we mostly just “yenta” like the mom on the American television show “The Goldbergs.”  He is completely correct, of course, but I will continue to say “I have knitting tonight” at least once a month. 😉Sometimes I catch him playing with his feet & cooing in bed in the morning after sleeping in a bit longer than me.  He likes to watch the ceiling fan, too.He looks just like my dad in this photo, I think!

He began sitting up unassisted on June 9th!  Yeah, Harmon!  He also started saying “ba-ba” on June 11th & has been practicing his one & only “word” ever since.June likes to sing to Harmon.  Right now her favorite song is “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” by the Beatles.  When I was pregnant with him she sang “Beautiful Boy” by John Lennon to my belly all the time.  We also have found that practically since birth he enjoys listening to “Bad” by Michael Jackson.  If he’s freaking out in the carseat, the kids will blast that song on my iPhone & he usually stops his fit.  He definitely likes music.  He also loves love loves his mama.  He’s a total mama’s boy, no doubt, but is very interested in what is happening around him at all times, too.  Just don’t take him away from his mama! 😉

You’re halfway to a year, Harmon Hunter!  Happy Half Birthday!  You keep being you, our little hobbit!

High Five!

High five, Harmon, you’re five months old!  And you’re so handsomely cute!  (I’m not sure if he actually is handsome, but I’ve had several strangers tell me in the past week that he is a “handsome boy”.)

So much has changed as of late.  I took Harmon to a lactation consultant the day after he turned five months & she agreed with what I have been suspecting since his four month well-child check–he has a milk soy protein intolerance.  We will have him officially tested at his six-month check, but for now I have cut dairy entirely, even “hidden dairy”.  It’s been three weeks since I cut most dairy & one week since I went cold-turkey & I can definitely see improvement.  [WARNING, TMI ahead!]  His stools are finally becoming seedy/yellow again, he no longer has constant diarrhea, his eczema patches on his torso/legs are no longer flaring angry raised red, & he’s napping better!!!!  The last week he has steadily been building toward consisten 1-2 hour naps 3X per day!  Miracles do happen!!!! 😉 

Harmon remains a tiny tiny person.  I think now that I’ve completely cut dairy & he’s not pooing 24/7 anymore, he will begin to gain weight better.  At five months he weighs exactly 13 lbs–2nd percentile, yikes!  So he’s slipped a few percentiles since his birthweight.  He doesn’t appear tiny to most people, but when you pick him up, you realize it instantly.  I thought this photo & the previous one illustrate his smallness fairly well. He loves looking at our vast collection of laminated pocket guides.June continues to LOVE her brother so much.  Harmon remains a bit leery, but he does laugh at her antics sometimes.He still likes to support himself up against furniture.  Finding toys in the baby toys bin is one of his favorite pasttimes, but he does get frustrated fairly quickly if he can’t reach what he wants.  He can roll from tummy to back, but hardly ever does….he just fusses on his tummy.  No sitting up, no scooting, no crawling.  I can still lay him down & he goes nowhere, but he’s not usually happy about it!  He prefers to sleep on his side.  Getting to sleep around 7PM at night involves a lot of bouncing; nursing doesn’t do the trick anymore.  He rubs his face on everything when he’s starting to get tired.Mama’s savior!!!  I usually prefer a little coffee with my heavy cream, so cutting dairy nearly did me in until I found this gem.Harmon loves his feet.  He also prefers hard toys over soft & everything goes in the mouth usually with his left hand.  My dad & his sister are left-handed & there are zero left-handed kids/grandkids in our family so a lefty would be awesome!  I realize it’s too early to tell, but I’m not imagining it that he does seem to use his left hand a majority of the time right now.  He’s still solidly a mama’s boy & sometimes tolerates Coralee, but he’s got major stranger anxiety.  He likes to sit on my lap on the back porch & just watch what happens in the backyard.  He loves sucking on the bottom of cold glasses, but he’s still exclusively breastfed.  Eating when he’s away from the house, however, is practically impossible unless he’s in the Tula.  Too much to see!  I also think he’s just a creature of habit & does not do well away from his routine.  He basically doesn’t eat when we’re away & then makes up for it all night long.  He is most content when I’m carrying him around the house, looking out the windows…going for walks is hit or miss.  He doesn’t like wind AT ALL.  Gets really fussy when the wind blows on him in the carrier & usually develops the hiccups, too.  Car rides are absolutely his least favorite thing.  He screams, cries, bellows, fusses…never sleeps.  Our 14 hour trip to Colorado this July is going to be interesting… But he’s my sweetie!  I wish the days would stop racking up so quickly…

3 becomes 4!

Harmon is four months!

I did not find the time to blog his third month milestones/photos last month, so I included one of his three month photos below. He’s changed so much! So much less hair, which I am sad about; his hair, especially on top of his head, is falling out/has fallen out & is being replaced by a lighter color. He still has all his baby hair in the back & it is very dark. I’m wondering what color he is going to end up with by a year old…I just hope he has some at this rate!

Three months!

Three months!

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IMG_3652[1]He was just under 12lbs at four months.  Today I took him in for his four month well-child check & he weighed 12lbs 7oz.  He’s in the 2nd percentile for weight.  At 24.25in long, he’s in the 7th percentile for height.  His head circumference is still hovering at the 50th percentile.  Still wearing his newborn Sloomb diapers, but he’s moved into medium Sloomb flats.  A small guy!IMG_3014[1]He cannot sit up & has not rolled even once, but he can hold his weight up in his legs very well!  He did this around 3.5 months!  June was stunned!  I was just plain old worried….not ready for this!
IMG_3657[1]He always has his hands together now like in this photo.  It is most definitely a comfort measure.  Reminds me of my dad.IMG_3658[1]

IMG_3659[1]He helps me wake up Merritt for the early bus around 6:15AM every morning.  Takes a very short nap (like 12 minutes) about an hour after waking up.IMG_3660[1]

IMG_2668[1]June took this photo in the car & I just thought it was cute.IMG_2549[1]Speaking of June, she wants to TOUCH TOUCH TOUCH her baby brother all.the.time.  It’s becoming a bit of a problem, but she just loves him so much.  I just wish she would stop touching his face.  He’s had far too many colds.  Harmon is a bit leery of her, but to be honest, he’s a bit leery of everyone.  He’s very serious.  Very much a mama’s boy.  He just wants his mama at all times & then everything is OK.IMG_3486[1]Hey, baby.  I’d like you to meet my girlfriend.IMG_3487[1]That’s some manicure my sister (June) gave ya.IMG_3490[1]You still there?IMG_3493[1]I think we should see other people.IMG_3656[1]Hanging with mama in the early morning.IMG_3475[1]Celebrating Merritt’s birthday!IMG_2535[1]I found this photo on my phone.IMG_2541[1]

Sleepy pics.  Harmon takes like 4-5 12-minute naps during the day.  Gah!   He sleeps well at night, waking a few times to nurse, so I can’t complain….but, yeah, I do!IMG_2647[1]

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IMG_3653[1]Four months is so sweet! xoxo

Lately…{photo heavy}

This is basically a post where I throw everything-but-the-kitchen-sink in because I cannot find the time to blog (or shower) lately without Harmon wailing at me.  He learned to really holler last week Monday–I mean holler at me (us) with purpose, but also coo at us with purpose & babble loudly at us.  It is actually quite awesome, but as he is still not napping much, either, blogging time is nonexistent.  This large dump of photos is about the equivalent of four or five posts I planned to write–so here’s your second “photo-heavy” warning! IMG_3239[1]
Our dogs found a rabbit nest near our compost pile (which is roughly 20-30 yards from their kennels) & obliterated it.  They, along with our cat Socks, killed several of the bunnies.  Coincidentally, we also found a dead adult rabbit in one of our gutter drainage hoses this week (drowned, apparently, in the deluge we received), so perhaps that was the mother.  In any case, this bunny was in Sock’s mouth.  It is in good shape now & Coralee plans to release it today or tomorrow, down the drive from our homestead (away from our dogs/cats).  It may seem really small, but it is the right size to be able to survive on its own, hoping it does.

I have no time to cook/bake lately…again, Harmon is so cute, isn’t he?  Ha!  I am trying to make really easy dinners.  Last night was leftover ham, Irish Soda Bread, hardboiled eggs, cheese, fruit, etc.  I ate way too much.Our new cat Prairie (born July 2015–adopted in late summer after I accidentally ran over our female cat, Pepper) was injured by something this week.  Big puncture wound in the back of his back right leg.  This photo is from before the injury.  Racked up a huge vet bill having him treated for it.  He is improving, thankfully.IMG_3252[1]Ferdie, our goose, is molting again.

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IMG_3261[1]Girls being goofy.

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IMG_3262[1]Birding at the bus stop.

Harmon tagged along a few weeks ago while Coralee monitored one of our Bald Eagle nests.Hard to discern in this photo, but there is an eagle on the nest!
How Harmon birds when it’s freezing & the wind is blowing like a freight train.  Seems to happen a lot in Iowa.IMG_3267Bird blind at Ham Marsh in Buchanan County.  We saw two Sandhill Cranes on the edge of the prairie pond here–they were bugling very loudly, we could hear them as we came down the trail.  Impressive!
Harmon nursing in a bird blind for the first time. #milestone

ⒸCoralee Bodeker

ⒸCoralee Bodeker: Brown Creeper

Lately we’ve done a lot of neat things, I must admit, but it sure takes a lot more planning with Harmon in tow.

Lately is good.  Hope your lately is good, too!

Yarn Along {dear baby…}

Dear Harmon (aka my baby who does not nap, at least not for more than an hour, combined, all day, unless I hold you continuously),

You will never have all the cute, popular-on-Ravelry, knit items for babies if you keep this non-napping schedule up…I hope you’re ok with that…you’re lucky you’re cute & smell amazing, like a baby.

Love,

Your Mom (aka the person who knits for you)



Pattern: Another Wee Envelope in Size 6-12months

Yarn: Quince & Co Chickadee in Belize

Quilt: Made By A Dear Friend & Master Gardener (& I Guess Master Quilter!) Who Rocks

Joining in with: The Lovely, Always Inspiring Ginny.

Yarn Along {baptism, wee envelope}

IMG_2623[1]I finished sewing the four vintage buttons onto Harmon’s baptism sweater (Ysolda’s ‘Wee Envelope’) at 6:30AM the day of the blessed event (March 6, 2016).  The service began at 10AM.

I live dangerously, apparently.

IMG_2624[1]Ginny’s yarn was a perfect choice for this sweater.  So soft!  I love love love it.  Wish I had more…I’ve got about 1/3 of the skein remaining.  I was hoping to use it for a pair of baby legwarmers, we’ll see.  Might have to be two-tone.

IMG_2625[1]Getting ready.

IMG_2627[1]He nursed right after I dressed him & promptly fell asleep.  I wanted a photo of him on top of my white comforter, awake, looking cute, ready for his big day…nope.  This had to do as we NEVER wake a sleeping Harmon, if we can help it–he hardly ever naps.

IMG_2628[1]I loved seeing his name (& my Grandfather’s!) displayed on the banner.

IMG_2626[1]He was a bit fussy during the baptism (which was basically the beginning of the service).  He did not like the water being poured on his head at all.  He didn’t really enjoy the minister showing him off to the congregation afterwards, either.  I took him to the nursery about ten minutes after it was all said & done & he fell asleep again.

IMG_2629[1]Harmon’s sponsors–Bailey & Coralee.  Such intelligent, kind, lovely ladies!

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I did not make his cake, but she did & she’s awesome!  She made June’s cake, my nephew Theo’s cake, & now Harmon’s.

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Flowers from my mom–Harmon seems to enjoy looking at this photo on my phone.  He also seemed to take a keen interest in staring at the real thing before they wilted & had to be thrown out.

IMG_2630[1]Harmon wore the sweater once more the week following his baptism.  (His new fascination is with his brother & sisters’ soccer balls.)  I should have knit it about 2-3 inches longer than called for in the pattern–I completely forgot in my rush to finish that Harmon has short legs & a crazy long torso!  The sweater is much too short now.  It barely worked for the baptism.  So sad!  But fear not, I have cast on another one & am all of five rows into it!  I’m knitting the next size up & will remember this time to lengthen the body for my elongated boy.

IMG_2631[1]My mother flew in from Tucson for the baptism–thank you so much for doing so, Mom!

IMG_2635[1]Harmon’s sweater looks quite sweet hanging on the wall in our/his (we co-sleep) bedroom now.  It would look better on Harmon, of course, but such is the life of a hurried/harried/knitting mama of four!

Joining in with Ginny!