A Few of My Favorite Things

There were so many things that Lauren enjoyed about Christmas this year. But, if I had to guess, her favorite things were:

  • Having a real tree in the living room! She had such a good time picking it out at Grannie & Papaw’s, helping Daddy water it everyday and, of course, decorating it! She was one glob of glitter when we were done but had a great time!
  • Reindeer…especially ones with red noses.
  • Christmas lights! Boy, she couldn’t get enough of them. Any time we were out at night, you could always hear her exclaiming from the back seat, “There’s some Christmas lights! And there’s some Christmas lights! And there’s some more Christmas lights!”
  • Candy canes – enough said.
  • Shopping for gifts for others – especially Hailey.
  • Christmas songs. She constantly wanted me to sing them…all the time! She actually enjoys my singing!
  • Eggnog. Well, I really think it was mostly the ice cream in the eggnog, but nevertheless, she was a big fan. She said the best part was, “drinking the ice cream from a straw.”

And with all of the joys that came with the holiday season, Lauren was definitely not a fan of Santa. She almost didn’t even come down the stairs Christmas morning. We had to reassured her several times that while Santa HAD been there, he was already back at the North Pole. After tentatively peaking around the corner and realizing that there were only presents under the tree – no sign of the Jolly Ol’ Elf himself – she sprung into action and had no more reservations about opening her gifts!

To see our Christmas pictures, click here.


An ALMOST Perfect Plan

In an attempt to settle Lauren down for an unwanted nap on Christmas day (who could blame her…I wouldn’t have wanted to stop playing with my new toys either), I turned to the clock in her room for help. After hearing, “Lauren’s just not ready (to nap)” over and over, I told her that she would just have to stay in her room until the big hand reached the 6 and then I’d come check on her. She was tired so I thought this would be perfect. Who could possibly keep from falling asleep while trying to watch the minute hand on a clock move? I set the clock on her night stand where she could easily see it, told her if she got tired before I came back that she could lay down in her bed and left her sitting in the chair. There were no objections and only after a few minutes, we didn’t hear any more movement coming from her room. Certain she had to be in bed, because it was just too quiet for her not to be, I decided to sneak a peak of her on the web cam. She wasn’t in bed. So we quietly ventured up the stairs to check her out and this is what we found.

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I was right, she was fast asleep. But I couldn’t leave her like this. I’m positive it wasn’t comfortable and I was afraid she was going to roll off and hurt herself. During the move to her bed, she woke up, of course – and there was no getting her back to sleep after that…even when I tried the same clock trick but this time with it on the floor. With her memory, I might not ever get a second chance.


Conversion Time

Because of Lauren’s antics, particularly her attempts to stand up for hours in her crib in hopes to stay awake (which basically resulted in her sleeping while standing), we were left with only one option. It was time to convert her crib into ap1110551-1.JPG toddler bed. I was secretly dreading this day, but was also open to any new tactics that might be an incentive for Lauren to revert back to the good ole days of a blissful night’s sleep. LP, on the other hand, was quite elated with the introduction of her toddler bed. She got to pick out a new pillow and she now cozies up under a super soft blanket. But, if I had to guess, her favorite part of her new bed was helping “create it”. She got to assist in unscrewing bolts and while Ryan and I tried to figure out how to tighten the new side rail, Lauren meticulously straightened the dust ruffle and then did a little tightening of her own on the monitor’s cord. She imitated Ryan & me as we discussed which strap to pull what way.

Talking to herself in a whisper, I overheard, “Pull this way up high like this. Now pull this down, and this down, and this down. There we go.” Then she’d start the whole process over again. It brought a smile to my face and such a joy to my heart as I watched her help us.

In the end, the whole bed was perfect and Lauren loved the idea of having the freedom to get in and out all by herself – the very thought that scared me so. We went over the rules…only playing in her room, on the floor. No climbing onto the window seat, chair, ottoman, or step stool. No climbing over the gate at her bedroom door. She listened and concurred and we tucked her in, gave her big hugs & kisses and said goodnight. Later that evening, we looked in on her. There she was, sound asleep, with her head on her pillow and still covered up by her blanket. She took up almost the whole bed. When did my little baby become so big?! I remember laying her down in her crib for the first time and thinking how it swallow her – she was so very tiny then. Now she’s a big girl – in a big girl bed. WOW! I don’t think I was prepared to feel sad, but a part of me did.

So far, she’s still not ventured out of her bed at night even though we’ve told her time and time again that getting a drink of water or blowing her nose, or even reading her books & playing with her toys was just fine. However, nap time has become play time. She will only stay in her bed briefly – then she’s out reading, playing and eventually at the gate calling for me. It’s provided a few laughs:

With a cry as if she’s been run over by a car, she calls, “Mommy, Mommy, Mommy!” Then nothing but silence for a few seconds. Next in just her regular voice, “Mommy, did you hear that?”

“Mommy, Mommy, Mommy! Lauren’s belly is on the cage (what she called the gate – pretty accurate, I guess). That’s cool! Mommy, Mommy, Mommy! Come put (your) belly on the cage too! It’s cool!”

Unfortunately, she’s still waking up at night and calling, “Mommy! Daddy! Come hold Lauren like a baby.” It is happening less often so we continue to keep our fingers crossed. But, in case the toddler bed doesn’t hold all the answers, I’m not above a little bribery. We’ve prepared a goodie bag of little toys for encouragement. Stay tuned for the outcome.


Christmas Spirit

Lauren’s caught the Christmas spirit! While she flipped through a magazine the other day while I cooked lunch, I over heard her say, “That’s Mommy’s. That’s Daddy’s. That’s Hailey’s for Christmas.”

This year’s visit to Santa was a little less traumatic…a little. She actually sat in Santa’s lap this year instead of clinging desperately to her daddy, and there was no bawling or screaming. And we also coerced a smile out of her – a fake one that was accompanied by tears welling up in her eyes. Santa asked Lauren what she wanted for Christmas, but she gave no response. She just sat starring at us with the most terrified look. I’m guessing she thought if she didn’t look at him he would go away. I really felt like there was no need to “torture” her any longer so we took our picture and left. As soon as we walked out of Santa’s house, LP started jabbering non-stop as usual. We did manage to write a letter to Santa. She dictated the following word for word:

Hello Santa,
I want a baby doll for Christmas. And a doggie…for Christmas. I want some new crayons. Lauren takes off her shoes (as she bent down and took off both shoes) and coloring…pretty, pretty, pretty! That’s all. Oh, and a pig, a camera, an elephant. Have the reindeer stick carrots on their nose. It’s looking red. And put the carrots everywhere! That’s all. Draw Lauren’s name now, Mommy. And get some toys.

I’m not sure if that last sentence was directed to Santa or me…Ryan and I think we might have a skeptic on our hands. She’s been asking a lot of questions about him and the reindeer already.

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27 Months: A Toddler Emerges…

With all of its zest, sweetness, humor, fire, furry, and spit. That’s right – spit. This past month has been memorable. I’ll start with a few of Lauren’s current favorite sayings:

“All by self.” She is so independent. I’m still getting us to the idea which is probably why I hear it so often.

“Just (fill in the blank) for a second.” To name a few: Just look at Hailey for a second or pet Hailey or pop my back or read this book.

“Probably” , “Maybe”, “A couple of times” and “Sometimes” seem to be what she likes to either begin or end most of her sentences with these days. I suppose that maybe I probably use those words a couple of times throughout the day… sometimes.

She regularly exclaims, “There we go!”, “Oh gosh!” and “I’m so proud of you!” Again, it’s as if she’s a recorder.

Some more recent direct quotes that made me laugh:
“Some M&Ms have nuts and some don’t”

” Don’t mess with Lauren while she’s eating. I’m going to ruff, ruff and growl at Mommy.”

“Why is a mango a fruit?”

While watching some strange story on TV, Ryan mumbled, “What the…”
Lauren then exclaims, “Heck!”

While strolling her bunny through the house she informed me she was going to The Gap for some pajamas. Then all of a sudden came to an abrupt stop.
I asked, “Are you there already?”
LP responded, “No, stop light.” Light green now, go.” and she took off again.
Once she arrived at the store she exclaimed in the most excited voice, “Oh, found of pajamas for Lauren.”
I asked, “What’s on them?”
LP thought for just a second and responded, ” Birds, flowers and corn.”

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And now for the fire, furry and spit portion for this past month. It seems that Lauren is going through the stage where she no longer wants to sleep. She will do anything to keep from falling asleep, including rambling on and on in her room instead of napping or standing up in her crib for 3 hours in the early, early morning crying. Needless to say, this has transformed our sweet, precious little angle into a sleep deprived pickle at times. I’ve witnessed more fits and melt downs over the past week than I have in her previous 27 months of life…at least that’s how it has seemed. And with her tantrums, she decided a cool thing to do is spit on the floor. Where on earth she came up with this tactic, I’m not quite sure, but she sure knows how to push my buttons. Fortunately, we are starting to work through this stage, I hope, and are looking at brighter days ahead.

I could only get Lauren to sit still and not cry for a few pictures this month – and in those you can see just how tired she is. But, nevertheless, she’s another month older and I wanted to capture photos from the day. Check them out, click here.