Olivia: 2 Years


Weight: 22 lbs 15 oz, 5th Percentile

Height: 33 Inches, 25th Percentile

Size: 18 months, 24 months

Nicknames: Via, O’ia (as she refers to herself)

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Wrapping anything/ everything (toy animals, cars, play food) in napkins, blankets, towels, etc. to make “a burrito”

Going to the “jump, jump” (Palaestra Toddler Open Gym) and “Another One Jump, Jump” (The Galleria indoor play place)


Going to the Perot “Moo-seum” for Sribbles & Dribbles Art Class

Playing in the sand (@ the Perot, the Lot, and the Arboretum Children’s Garden) rocks, dirt and mud. Loves getting dirty!

Playing with Friends and Cousins – Asks for her friends by name, followed by “today?”

FaceTime with G, Papa, Chip, Em and B

“Snuggling” with Mommy and Dayda in the early mornings

Playing in the Snow!

Playing dress-up

Likes to use her “special stool” to stand on to help cook, brush her own teeth, reach things”

Watching Disney’s Frozen

Chalk, Painting, Playdough, Crayons, any type of art project

“Play the kitchen”

Swim Lessons – can swim 10 seconds under water and approx 3.5 feet!

Her new pottery barn “Everywhere” Chair

Her “Baby Brother” doll

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Favorite Books: Teddy Bear Picnic, Forever Young, Jesus Loves Me, All things Bright and Beautiful, Ladybug Book (from Aunt B)

Favorite Songs: Teddy Bear Picnic, Wheels on the Bus, “This is the Way we Drive the Car,” Itsy Bitsy Spider, “Fox Song” (What does the Fox Say?) “Snowman Song” (Do You want to Build a Snowman? From Frozen) and “Let it Go” (Also Frozen)

Favorite Toys: Small Plastic Animals, Her Kitchen, Play Dough, Coloring with Crayons/Markers, Painting, Baby Brother Doll, Hot Wheels,

Favorite TV Shows/Movies: Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, Caillou, Frozen, Monsters Inc, Monsters University, Toy Story 1, 2, and 3

Favorite Foods: “Hot Cheese” (Macaroni and Cheese), Hot Dogs, Peas, Carrots, Oranges, Cantaloupe, Strawberries, Yogurt, Spaghetti & Meatballs, “I-meem” (Ice cream), Kiefer, any kind of  granola or breakfast “bar”  Tacos, Hypnotic Donuts




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House hunting

Hotel Rooms

Brushing her teeth and hair

Pigtails, Pony Tails, clips, headbands and bows



Being a Flower Girl @ Ashley & Clay’s wedding in Sandy, UT

Talking in full sentences

Can say/sing ABCs

Can Tell you her name and her home address!

Understands and recognizes emotions in herself and others, Happy, Sad, Frustrated, Mad. If other kids are crying she frequently asks if they’re “OK”

Is happy to go play with friends in her class at church

Understands sharing (Thanks to Daniel Tiger who says, “You can Take a Turn, and then I get it back”)

Moving to a new house

Sleeping through the night in her OWN BIG GIRL BED….!!!

Going down at nap time and bed time alone!


Conversations with Via

*Puts on Hat and Backpack* – “I go to school now!”

Walks in to the kitchen on her birthday and asks, “Where’s my birthday party?”

Has an extensive vocabulary…


Insists that the sprinkles on her donut are “sparkles.”

Playing with Uncle Chip in the Atrium – Looking in the window to Mommy/Dadyda’s bedroom, “Look! It’s Mommy/Dayda’s Room! It’s Chicka Boom Boom inside!” (Referring to her Chicka Chicka Boom Boom book)

When Dayda lets her swing on his lap on the big girl swing at the park “It’s a little bit dangerous”

Sitting on the front porch at the Sycamore House “But… I’m going to miss my house… it’s SO… Sad”

“Mommy, I’m singing… It’s Happy Birthday Chip!”

Pretending to nurse her “baby brother” doll – “It’s baby brother! he wants to drink my milk, let’s drink my milk (baby brother)” * makes sucking noise and pretends to nurse her doll*

Miss Laura, talking about how the girls are best friends… Olivia proudly puts her hand on her chest as exclaims “I’m A BEST FRIEND!”

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Monthly Highlights


Gramma G visit

Purchase of Juan Noble Tree IV

Christmas celebrations

Dallas “Ice-Mageddon”


Trip to California to visit Family Gorham

Scribbles & Dribbles Art Class at the Perot Museum


Listed our House for Sale only to have it sell within 36 hours with multiple offers.

Lots of last minute home improvements including repainting interior and deck, handy-man fixes and sprucing up… lots of time spent out on the town… car naps and early bedtimes!

Spent countless hours, days, weekends frantically house hunting… made 3 offers on 3 houses before one stuck!

Purchased our second home (Closed, Moved and Settled in beginning of March)


Letters to Via  – OKPittman@gmail.com

Although the inbox may still be a little bit empty… i opened a gmail account in Olivia’s name to have a place to send and share messages, pictures, letters and funny things… a sort of scrapbook. If you would like to contribute, feel MORE than welcome… just send an email to the address above!

Note: Obviously Moving at 9 months pregnant slightly delayed this post… better late than never!

Olivia: 18 Months


22 lbs, 15th Percentile

31.5 inches 50th Percentile

Size: 18 months

Tooth Count: 12 (including 4 molars!)

Hair: Still so wispy and thin but getting longer every day! Still strawberry-blonde and beautiful… almost enough for a pony… OK, not really.

Nicknames: Via, Doodle (Bug)

Loves: Chairs, Swimming, Sand, Vehicles (Cars, Busses, Trains, Motorcycles), Playing outside, playing dress-up, building with blocks, helping sweep the floor with her pint-sized “Moon”, Bubbles, giving kisses, going to the Zoo, Pop-Pops (Popsicles), her Bestie Bayo, Running / Playing Ready, Set, Go!, Slides, hats, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, Calliou, Jumping, “Riding”



Swimming With Bayo

Cranks: Sitting in a highchair for longer than about 15 minutes, making dinners out pretty darn frustrating for mom and dad. Dinners at family-friendly / outdoor restaurants like Chicken Scratch & The Lot are frequent. Not being able to go outside. Going to bed.

Favorite Foods: “Hot Cheese” (Macaroni & Cheese), Beans, Peas, Cheese Sticks, Strawberries (“AwBeeBees”), Hot Dogs, Tomatoes (“MayMos”), Ice Cream “I-Meam”, Chicken Stir Fry,

Favorite Books: “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”, “Things that GO”, “I love you so”, “Daddy Hugs”, “Llama, Llama, Red Pajama”, “Beep, Beep” … we read close to 10 books a night before bed.

Milestones and other things…

Understands when she’s made a poop, tinkle, or toot in her diaper, promptly announces “Doodie!”, “Tinkle!”, or “TOOTS” – When she burps… instead of saying “Excuse me” like her Mama would like her to… she says, “Nice!”

Can accurately complete some of her puzzles alone (Melissa & Doug, Chunky pieces)

Can identify several animals and tell you what sound they make.

Can put multiple words together to make short phrases (“Hi, Dog!” or “Big Ball” or “Car Go”)

Can sort of say “I Love you” although is sort of sounds like “I wub wub”

Can climb up on most anything… which we are learning is quite dangerous.

Understands the possessive, likes to identify who things belong to… “Mommy’s… Car” “Dayda’s Pillow”

Converted Crib to Toddler Bed

First tinkle in big girl potty!!

Identifying people and objects around her *Points* “Car, and, mommy, annnnd, chaulk, annnd plane”

Summer 2013 Highlights


Sedona trip with Family Gorham



Swim Lessons @ Emler Swim School

Weekend in Fort Worth for Townsend Engagement Party

Rakowska Family moves to Texas!


Fourth of July Party

Gramma G Visit


These first few weeks of August have been REALLY  hot making it really difficult to be outside much. (Huge bummer for a toddler who loves the outdoors). Most of our days filled with play dates, early morning zoo and park trips, swim lessons.

First trip to the Perot Museum of Nature & Science

Dearest Via,

I love how you say, “Help Me!” and “Up Please” … and how sometimes you get “Up” and “Down” (AKA “Noun”) confused… Your recent obsession with “Noise,” anything you can hear but not see. How you say, “Here you go” when you’re giving or sharing. How you love to hold my hand when we are walking together. How you’ve learned to ask for “Milk!” and how you still want to nurse like a newborn some days. You’ve definitely found your voice but you’re still such a sweet and gentle kid. Although your Dayda and I worry that you’ll be co-sleeping until you’re 10, we secretly love going to bed as a family. Sometimes you roll over reach out to hold Daddy’s hand while you sleep… and it melts his heart every time. Last Saturday, Daddy and I were working in the kitchen, cleaning out cabinets while you were napping in your room. We were trying our best to keep quiet but you must have heard us because suddenly (I was pretty startled) I heard your little footsteps walking through the kitchen. You’d gotten up and out of bed and walked in to find us without making a peep. Although it may not sound like much, it hit us like a ton of bricks… you’ve gotten SO big. You’re really not a baby any more. Every day you act more and more like a big kid. You’re talking more and more and really communicating what you want and need most of the time. You get frustrated easily when we try to stop you from doing things yourself… this independence means lots of clean-up for mommy but watching you experiment is totally worth it. You love playing outside and the heat doesn’t seem to get to you in the slightest. When I’m cooking dinner in the evenings, you sometimes stand at the back door and repeat “OUTside… Ball.. annnnnd Car… and Chaulk… and Plane… and DAYDA!” Almost every night after dinner, you and daddy play the “Ready, Set Go!” game in the hallway. Daddy sits on one end and you stand at the other while he says, Ready… Set…. Then you squeal “GO” and run down the hallway full speed ahead into his arms. This is solid entertainment long enough for mommy to finish cleaning the kitchen and helps get wiggles out before bath and bedtime. Speaking of bedtime, you’re still no where near sleeping through the night… but we plan on working on that over the next 6 months. You really are a sweet kid and we’re so proud of how smart and gentle you are. It’s so rewarding and wonderful watching you grow. You are the most wonderful gift I’ve ever been given. I love you, so. 



Olivia: 15 Months


20 lbs 12 oz (25th percentile)

29.75 inches (50th percentile)

Size: 18 months

Tooth Count: 4.5 top, 3.5 bottom (cutting first molar!)

Nicknames: Via, ViaVia, Doodle, Liv, Luvbug

*disclaimer: this post is now OVER a month late… but still mostly relevant 🙂

Loves: Being Outside in the backyard or at the park, Water “Agua” (Drinking, Splashing at Klyde Warren, Playing, Swimming) , Balloons, Balls, Babies, The Swings, Popsicles, crushed ice, animals, cars/trains/ things with wheels, the Durch, reading books before bedtime, plants, dirt, music, blocks.

Favorite Foods: Tomatoes, Oranges, Grapefruit, Peas, Strawberries, Kiwi, Generally anything “Ball” shaped, Mac n Cheese, Hot Dogs, beans, broccoli, Cheerios, Bunnies, Chicken Stir Fry, Spaghetti, Ham. Occasional Treats: French Fries, Ice Cream, Popsicles

Favorite Books: Baby Bodies, Where’s Spot?, Daddy Hugs, peek-a-who, Duck & Goose 123, Beep, Beep Car Book, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Brown Bear Brown Bear, Head to Toe

Favorite TV shows: Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, Calliou, Dinosaur Train

Cranks: seeing mommy at the chiropractor, going to the nursery at church, having her face wiped, Balloon Envy, long meals out, being contained, leaving the park before she’s ready, sleeping in her own bed.


  1. Baby
  2. Ball
  3. Dog (sometimes “hi dog”)
  4. Agua (Water)
  5. milk (“miilll”)
  6. Cheese
  7. Peas
  8. Please
  9. Giraffe (“gee”)
  10. Bird (“Bees”)
  11. Belly Button (“Debbie”)
  12. uh-oh
  13. Taco
  14. Avocado (cag-oh)
  15. beans
  16. car
  17. goodnight (“nigh-no”)
  18. bunny (“mummy”)
  19. banana (“nanny”)
  20. NO
  21. Zoo
  22. plane (“lain”)
  23. bug
  24. flower (“bah-lor”)
  25. choo-choo
  26. diaper (“biper” or “bumpah”)
  27. hat
  28. nose
  29. shoe
  30. elbow
  31. eyeball
  32. cherrio (“ohs”)
  33. tomato (“maymo”)
  34. blankie (“Beebee”)
  35. All Done
  36. Berry
  37. Blues (AKA BlueBerries)
  38. Open (“oh-pee”)
  39. Teeth
  40. Hot
  41. Hotdog
  42. Leaf
  43. Toes
  44. Goose
  45. Ice
  46. Ice Cream
  47. Bus
  48. Chicken (“Chicky”)
  49. Coffee (“Cah-Cah” – Actually refers to any adult beverage… coffee, beer, or soda)
  50. Blocks


  • Mama, mommy, maaahmee
  • Dada, Dayda
  • “Bayo” BFF Paden
  • “B” Bethany
  • “G” Gramma G
  • “Papa” Papa G
  • “MAW-MAW”
  • “EEEM” Auntie Em
  • “Pip” Uncle Chippy
  • “Hold Me” Holden


  • Snake (“ssssss”)
  • Horse (“nay”)
  • Duck and the duck says “Ka-Co”
  • Cow (“boooo” or “moooyah”)
  • Cat “Me-ow”
  • Bird (bees) says “tee tee or beep beep”
  • Fish (“blub blub blub”)
  • Lion (“ahhhhh”)
  • Tiger (“OWWW”)
  • Sheep (“baah”)
  • Pig ( Actually, no sound, just an “oink” face… and it’s the cutest darn thing in the world)
  • Elephant
  • Squirrel

Can find:

  • nose
  • eyes
  • tongue
  • hair
  • belly button
  • ears
  • hands/fingers
  • feet/toes
  • elbow
  • mouth
  • teeth

Still not sleeping through the night… much less in her own bed. Quite attached to mommy and daddy. Slowly warming to friends/family and gaining some independence. Nursing 2-3x a day and usually once in the middle of the night.

Spring 2013 Highlights:


Walking! (At around 2 weeks after her first birthday!)

Weekly Wednesday play-dates with Paden

NIce Weather means lots of afternoons at the Park (Favorites: Exall, Scottish Rite, Abbott/Coffee)

 Haley’s Wedding // weekend trip to the Omni

Rakowska Family visit

Easter at White Rock Fellowship

Easter Egg Hunt at Great Paw Paw’s House

GG visits for Great Grandaddy’s 90th Birthday

Arboretum Visits


The Dallas Zoo Membership

Lots of chiropractor visits

New pediatrician – Dr. Agrawal

Hand, Foot, & Mouth Disease


SCG Sundays with the Shus



B’s graduation from TCU

Mother’s Day

Gramma G / Papa visit Dallas

Baby Dedication @ WRF

Justin and Cass visit Dallas

Patio Lunches // Dinners: Chicken Scratch, Stack house, Good 2 Go Taco

Splashing at Klyde Warren Park

Sweet Via Via, 

In the past few months, your dad and I have really started to feel like we’re getting to know you. You are starting to grow into your big personality. You are so gentle and kind, just like your dad. I’m starting to see so much of his temperament in you. You don’t like to be rushed or hurried. You do things in your own time. Sometimes I wonder if you’ll be introverted like your dad or extroverted like me. You are frequently happy in your own little world, talking to yourself, imagining, and learning. You’re very inquisitive. You like to figure out how things work… you’ll stay captivated by mechanical things for several minutes – wheels, water, whatever. You love animals… and can identify too many to count. You make the most adorable sound when we talk about fishies “Blub, Blub, Blub…” And you witnessed first hand what sound a tiger makes… not “RAWR”… “OOOOWWW.” And you say it with such confidence. You love your Dad more than anything and he adores that you wake up asking for him every morning, “Dayda?” “Dayda?” You’re still nursing like a champ… 2-3… sometimes 4 or even 5 times a day… and several times at night… Your pediatrician has advised me against continued nighttime nursing and cosleeping… but your Dad and I are confident that we’re doing what is best for you. In fact, I love nursing as much as you do. I cherish our quiet alone time more and more each day. You’re a pistol when it comes to eating… sometimes you shovel so much food in your mouth that I wonder if you’re actually a gerbil… more often than not though, you feed most of your meals to “The Durch” – speaking of – you love the Durch… you’re learning to be gentle with her, but you’ve got a ways to come before you’re ready for a little brother or sister (#notanannouncement). Paden Shugart, “Bayo” is your bestie… and you ask for him EVERY.DAY. Going to the grocery store with you is almost impossible, you love to holler out the names of all of the fruits and veggies as we roll past… You’re getting more and more confident on your feet. You love to play in the backyard, at the park, in the fountains at Klyde Warren Park but you’re still somewhat timid when bigger kids are around.

You’re quite attached to me… and for the moment, that’s wonderful.

You are such a special little soul and I can’t imagine life without you.

I love you.


Olivia: 11 Months


17.8 lbs

27.5 inches

Size: 12 Months

Size 3 Disposable diapers (on the rare occasion that we use them!)

Tooth Count: 4 on Top, 2 on Bottom

Nicknames: Liv, Liver Dude, Sneekle Freetzie, Chickadee

Finally growing some hair… still our little strawberry blonde, with the longest (dark) lashes I’ve ever seen.


The Christmas Tree

Lights, lamps and fans.

Snowmen (not sure what it is about them… the stuffed or picture variety seem to really tickle her…maybe it’s something about that carrot nose?)

Her new Baby-Baby (from Mamaw)

Her new piano just like Daddy’s (from Gramma and Poppa G)


Big Gee (Giant Giraffe from Auntie Maggie!)

Eating Dirt, Grass and Sticks

Klyde Warren Children’s Park

All stuffed animals, blankets and soft things. Even those that don’t belong to her

Favorite Books: Where’s Spot? (Especially loves it when Mommy/Daddy make animal sounds), Baby Einstein Christmas Books, Mommies are for Counting Stars, Baby Animals Touch and Feel

Favorite Toys: Music table, toy drums, lady bug instruments, Melissa & Doug Puzzles

Little People Nativity Set

Any “toys” that are NOT “toys

Foods: Avocados are now OUT (Who would have thought?) Blueberries always a fav. Peas. Anything pinch-able or swallow whole-able. Also a huge fan of “Cherrios

Girlfriend LOVES her wubbanub… not ready to give up that Paci….



Sick on Vacation

Diaper Changes


Long drives in the car

Not being allowed to crawl around on the ground at the airport

The Snowsuit


Olivia’s First Christmas Highlights

Christmas at Mamaw’s

1st Cousins Bath at Mamaw’s House with Rylie (5) & Remie (7 mo)

Christmas Party and  Christmas Play at Great Papaw’s House

1st Christmas in CA

Christmas Eve Service @ St. Margaret’s in San Juan Capistrano

 Christmas Morning Presents and traditional Christmas Breakfast

Opening Presents

1st trip to the beach on Christmas Day Tide-Pooling & Exploring

1st trip to Big Bear (Also first time in the snow!)

1st brewery tour (@ Stone Brewery in Escondido, CA)

First real word: “Baby” … except sometimes it sounds more like “BAY-BO”

Other “Words” : Mama, Dada, Geee, Durg Durg Durg (maybe Dog? maybe Durch?)

Patting her tummy, Patting Mommy and Daddy’s back

Pointing at everything and making sounds that sort of sound like “dis” and “dat”

Reaching up high (WEEEEEE!)

Giving Kisses… big, open-mouthed, wet ones.

Olivia: 10 Months | Olivia: 9 Months | Olivia: 8 Months

Mom Life: Sleep Diaries

I do truly look forward to the day when this “series” concludes… until then. An update… the continuation of our sleep diaries… Started Here… Progressed Here

A friend recently posted a link to this article, Sleep: A Misguided and Unhealthy Obsession that really resonated with the way I’ve been feeling about our family sleep situation lately.

After almost 2 weeks in California, and the obvious de-railers that come with traveling, getting back into a routine has been a difficult transition. In addition, we were all sick on vacation for at least 3-4 days each… overlapping to span basically the entire trip. Basically… our California Christmas was spent snuggling co-sleeping in a full-sized guest bed. Actually… most nights Daniel ended up on the couch… I guess Liv and I take up too much room.

So… where are we now? Co-sleeping? … Only Co-sleeping the half of the night that Olivia refuses to sleep in her crib. Nursing only once… Nursing as much and as frequent as Olivia wants… I can’t say that I really know. All I can say is… I’ve definitely started this series with the “If Momma Ain’t Happy” argument… and I’ve made it 180 degrees. My happiness or ability to be a good mother has little to do with the # of hours or consecutive hours of sleep I get. If I’m totally truthful… I’ve actually gotten pretty used to getting up in the middle of the night… nursing in the middle of the night. Going to bed early… waking up late. Occasionally I’ll even indulge in an afternoon nap with Olivia.

NOW… If we could just figure out how to get Olivia to stop being such a sleeping squirm worm… I think we’d all do just fine.

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Mom Life: Sleep Diaries

I admit I’ve dragged my feet with this long overdue update to our Sleep Diaries.

Almost 2 months ago, Daniel and I agreed that we needed to embrace some kind of sleep training. Obviously our ultimate goal of having a child who would sleep through the night (ideally 7:30 PM – 7:30 AM) in her own bed. The first few nights were rough… but really, it was nothing as bad as I expected. Not nearly as many tears as anticipated (hers or mine) and fairly successful after just a few nights…. AND THEN… An ear infection happened…. AND THEN… A fever/cough/cold/snotty mess happened…. AND THEN…. more teething…. and it seemed like all that hard work all that tearful training was for nothing. We were back at square one.

Fast Forward to present. For the past few weeks, Olivia and I have both been fighting a bit of a cough/cold…  VERY mild symptoms (luckily) but caused an unfortunate dip in my milk supply… READ: results in attempting to nurse as often as humanly possible… even in the overnight hours to help increase production… thus causing our most recent set-back with sleep training. And we arrive at today… Recovering supply. Happy baby. Tooth #6 completely popped. Cough/Cold almost crushed… and ready to get some good sleep… All to be thrown by a 2 hour time change in less than a week when we fly to California for Christmas.

Lately it feels like it’s ALWAYS going to be something… Although sometimes most of the time I envy my friends who have babies who have been sleeping through the night since they were 6-weeks old… I’ve come to terms with the fact that my precious baby girl… is just NOT an excellent sleeper… and I’m OK with that.

Just a note. Tonight, Olivia crashed while nursing around 8, woke up at 11:45 PM (I nursed her back to sleep)… and almost 2 hours of pump/shop/blogging… I’m still awake. Maybe Momma has sleep issues too?

Featured Image Here

Olivia: 10 Months


17.8 lbs

27.5 inches

Size: 9-12 Months

Size 3 Disposable diapers (on the rare occasion that we use them!)

Tooth Count: 4 on Top, 2 on Bottom

Nicknames: Liv, Liver Dude, Sneekle Freetzie


Sticking her tounge out…

Reading Books, Especially, Bright Baby Merry Christmas Touch & Feel ,Baby Animals Touch and Feel and Where’s Spot? and of course, Rainforest Discoveries AKA “Ooey Gooey”

Loves to Snuggle

Unrolling the toilet paper

Playing in the tupperware drawer

The Christmas Tree and her giraffe ornament

Unrolling wrapping paper

Puffs! & Mum-Mums

Favorite Foods: Avocado, Blueberries, and Peas.

Playing in her stuffed animal corner

Listening to dad play guitar and piano

Watching the yard guy blow leaves

the Durch

the big giant stuffed giraffe at the Macy’s Kids Department

Favorite Toys: Wooden Melissa & Doug Puzzle, Little People Nativity Set, Mom + Dad’s wooden name puzzles, small wood cars (from Canton), anything that’s not really a toy… water bottles, keys, sunglasses, socks, shoes,

Taking Tubs with Dad – Playing with tub toys while Mom gets dressed (as long as she keeps it to under 10 minutes)

The playground at Klyde Warren Park

Being Outside

Waving at strangers at the mall

Removing her socks

WubbaNubs – Definitely knows how to work a Paci

Playing with Dolls and Stuffed Animals

Sipping from Mom’s Tervis Cup

Soft Things


Getting in the Car Seat

Christmas Shopping


Being out too late, bedtime is usually around 7:30pm

Being covered up while nursing.

Having her diaper changed



Wearing Shoes (and keeping them on!)


Waves Hello/Goodbye

Blows Kisses (sometimes)

 1st Thanksgiving

Meeting Santa for the 1st time

Using a Sippy Cup for water

Grabbing produce as we walk through the grocery store… or sweaters off of hangers… or branches off trees… whatever those little fingers can reach.

Stands and pulls up on EVERYTHING

Shakes Head “No” (but we’re pretty sure this means “wiggle wiggle” not actually “No”)

Signs “All Done”

Says, “Dadada (Dad), Mum Mum Mum (Mom), Geeeeee (all Giraffes), Nay Nay Nay (no idea?), Boooo, Gooo, Gahhh, Blah Blah Blah, and Dug Dug Dug (Dog?).

Talks to herself while playing in a whisper voice… especially when she’s playing with something new… or staring at the Christmas Tree

Still not sleeping through the night consistently. Still frequently wants to nurse at night… sometimes multiple times, especially when she’s sick.

Generally nursing 4-5x during the day, about every 4 hours… plus one more overnight feeding (REALLY trying to eliminate this one!)

Our Christmas Card

10 Months

Olivia: 9 Months | Olivia: 8 Months | Olivia: 7 Months

Olivia: 9 Months


17.6 lbs, 25th Percentile

27.5 inches, 50th Percentile

Size: 9- 12 Months

Tooth Count: 6 – 3.5 on top, 2 on bottom

Nicknames: Liv, Sneekle Freetzie, Bug, Kates (Like the second half of Baby Cakes… kinda weird, I know)


Puffs & Baby Mum-Mums


Watching other Babies and Kiddos

Grass, dirt, mud, & leaves

Going to the park – Exploring Outside

Klyde Warren Park

Playing with pumpkins

Water Bottles, Tupperware, Pots + Pans

Getting in the the refrigerator

Exploring faces via poking of eyelashes, noses, mouths. Loves wiggly tongues.

Toilet Paper


Her “OLIVIA” blanket (From Miss. Jill)

Her WubbaNub Collection

Favorite Foods: Avocado, Peas, Carrots, Squash, Pumpkin… but especially Avocado.

Favorite Books: Rainforest Discoveries, Animal Kisses, All of the DK Touch & Feel Books

The poopy-toot song

Getting in to Dad’s sweaters

Playing in Durch’s water bowl



Her Carseat

The Exersaucer

Having her Diaper Changed

Swallowing Medicine

Having Dangerous objects taken away

Swings @ the Park


First Halloween!



First Ear Infection

First High Fever (102.1 degrees)

Waves and Points & Pinches to Pick-Up small objects (like Peas & Puffs)

Signs “All-Done”

Says “Mum Mum Mum,” “Da Da Da,” “GEEEEEE,” “Bye”

 Growing, Growing…

9 Months

Olivia: 8 Months  |  Olivia: 7 Months  |  Olivia: 6 Months

Family P: Give Thanks

A few more Thanksgivings from the Jar:

Today I am Thankful for… Being able to stay-at-home with Olivia

Today I am Thankful for…Being able to breastfeed with no complications

Today I am Thankful for… Clean Sheets and our BIG comfortable bed.

Today I am Thankful for… Hot Coffee.

Today I (Daniel) am thankful for… My Tiny Pliny

Featured Image Here‘p0

Mom Life: Ain’t Nobody Happy (Sleep Diaries)

5:10AM Olivia is finally asleep in her crib… I think.

Am I asleep? No. I’m wide awake. Coffee Brewed. Googling… “Alternative to Cry it Out Method.” Several message board posts later – I feel horrible about ignoring my gut instinct to ALWAYS comfort my baby when she cries. I talked to our pediatrician, and consulted many friends about their experiences with sleep training and developing healthy sleep habits for/with their babies this past week. Everyone has an opinion about what works – but it all boils down to the baby. (I don’t think I like using the word BOIL and BABY in the same sentence).  I never really fully backed the Ferber-type method for sleep training; never judged those who did, just didn’t think it could work for me (and Olivia). Most of my friends made suggestions like, “quit nursing her at night,” and “let her sleep with you until she decides she’s ready to sleep in her own bed – cribs are prisons” and of course, the flip side, “you just need to let her cry it out!” We were at the pediatrician on Tuesday for an ear re-check when Dr. Diaz encouraged me to try the CIO method. She made arguments like, “It’s your responsibility to help your baby develop healthy sleep habits in the same way that it’s your responsibility to help them develop healthy eating habits” and “Babies cry, that’s just what they do.” I really couldn’t disagree with these statements more – It’s not like I’m encouraging POOR sleeping habits! and I certainly don’t think that letting your baby cry just because “it’s what they’re supposed to do” is acceptable. Babies cry because they NEED something – food, diaper, cuddling… etc. (We’re switching Doctors, by the way – more on that later).

OK – So I’ll set the stage. To help paint a picture of what the past few months have been like… and show you just how sleep deprived I am.

At around 6 months – Olivia’s sleep habits changed… and I have a feeling it’s mostly my fault. (This is where I do agree with owning the responsibility of developing healthy sleep habits.) Pre-6 month old Olivia would nurse to sleep in the evening, go down in her crib… wake up to nurse once, maybe twice, but generally sleep for 10-12 hours in two 5-6 hour stretches. During her nighttime feedings, she frequently fell asleep within a few minutes of nursing – a big sign that she probably wasn’t REALLY hungry, just needed a snuggle. Here’s what I should have done at this point – Slowly eliminate nursing at night, instead just rock, cuddle, sing her back to sleep. Instead, at 6 months, when I was so totally sick of the zombie feed, I started bringing her to bed with us, (BIG MISTAKE family cuddling is kind of the best) where I could roll over, nurse, then fall back asleep. Just as I was convinced that I needed to be the one to break this habit and let Olivia start sleeping in her own bed again… we had 4 straight weeks of cough cold/ ear infection/ cutting teeth… and my plan was shot. So here we are (Oct. 31)- a typical night (for the last 2 months) for us looks like this:

8:00PM I nurse Olivia then usually rock her for 15-20 minutes, sing, say prayers, etc. until she’s pretty much konk’d out

10:30PM We usually get to sleep – It’s really nice to have that extra couple of hours alone!

1:30AM (or so…) Olivia wakes up, I nurse her in the rocking chair in her room, then rock her for 15-20 (sometimes 30 minutes) then put her down in her crib… and her little eyes POP open… like, “BUT MOM! I want to sleep with you!”

2:00AM So I usually make a second attempt to get her to go back to sleep… Another 30 minutes of rocking… and I put her down… and her eyes POP open.

2:30AM Occasionally I make a third attempt – but usually I’m frustrated and tire by this point so I usually just let her come to bed with us – where I give her a pacifier and she crashes pretty quick.

3:30AM Somebody squirms, coughs or rolls over and Olivia wakes up – so I nurse her back to sleep.

5:00AM Daniel gets up for work, Olivia starts to squirm so I give her a pacifier and pray that she’ll go back to sleep.

5:30AM Still squirming, I make another attempt to feed Olivia thinking that it might help her sleep a little longer.

5:30 – 6:30AM I endure an hour or so of kicking and squirming… which gradually escalates to hair-pulling and poking (She really likes to poke my nose and eyes and stick her pointer finger in my mouth)…

so by 6:30… I get up.. make the coffee… turn on the news, pump, etc.

So basically, I get a 3 hour (or so) stretch of sleep, then am up for an hour and a half, then get another 2 hour stretch, then an hour and a half of “half-sleep.” NOT ENOUGH SLEEP. I do feel guilty that I don’t want to share our bed anymore with our squirmy baby. HOWEVER, “Ain’t Nobody Happy if Momma Ain’t Happy Rested.”

So last night. Actually… this morning. or today. We let Olivia calm herself back to sleep – I won’t really say we let her cry it out – because I definitely didn’t follow all the rules to Ferber’s method. We had a bit of an off night,  (Olivia boycotted her afternoon nap yesterday then fell asleep at 6:30 while we were out trick-or-treating) so we extended her bedtime a bit. When she woke up at 3:30AM (actually much later than usual!) – I went in and fed her, we cuddled for 30 min or so then I put her down with a pacifier (eyes popped open), tuned her mobile on (I don’t usually do this – but figured maybe it would help her drift off to sleep) and walked out of her room. She fussed a bit (not even real crying) for about 10 minutes then I let her cry or 5 minutes before I went in to find her standing in the crib. I gently kissed her head and helped her lay back down, gave her a pacifier, rubbed her tummy a bit, turned her mobile on and again walked out. Tears definitely welled up in her eyes (mine too) as I was going through the process… and she started to cry as I walked about again. I waited 15 before going back in and repeated the processes. When I walked out this time, I set my stop watch for 30 minutes… thinking, “there’s no way I’m going to be able to endure this!” –  but she cried for less than 5 minutes.. and that was an hour and ago.

So I’ve been awake since 3:30AM. Not the desired result but I do see more sleep in my future. And a more rested Momma (and Olivia) will make for a happier family. Stay Tuned for night #2 of “Healthy Sleep Habit Building”… that’s what I’m going to call it.

UPDATE: Night 2 was much easier… Olivia, again, woke up around 3:00AM – I fed her, rocked + snuggled her for a few minutes then put her down in her crib with a pacifier + mobile on. She cried for about 20 minutes (which was much less heartbreaking on the second night since it was more of a whine than a cry). I checked on her, rubbed her back for a minute or two then left her room. She cried for 12 minutes (I’d set my stopwatch for 45 minutes this time) before falling asleep. Again – she slept much later than she would have if she was in bed with us… until around 7:15AM. Go Liv!


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