Thursday, May 23, 2013

Leo's one year checkup

Leo went for his one year checkup on Monday and it was all good news. He is super healthy and happy and the doctor said he is doing great! He doesn't say any words yet but the doctor said he is very engaged and knows what's going on so she's not worried in the least. She said he's too busy exploring to bother with talking and it's so true. He was opening doors and cabinets and drawers during most of his checkup. He's also walking a little which is right on track and his body is strong and healthy.

The two main things the doctor said she tells parents when their kids turn one is - start weaning off the bottle and start introducing table food. Leo hasn't had a bottle in over a month and eats exclusively table food. He's also eating with a fork! He sees us doing it and has been working on and mastering it. It's hilarious to see such a little guy eat so well with utensils. I didn't give Belle a spoon until she was 15 months and it was a disaster! But he can use a fork as well as we can.

I cannot remember what his height was, but he is 24.5 pounds and is in the 67% for height and 64% for weight. So he's slightly bigger than the average kid. It makes us laugh because Belle has always been 95%+ for height and between the 70%-80% for weight which is so different from Leo. We joke that they'll end up being the same height because Belle is so tall and he's a little bigger than average.

His eyes are still deep blue and his lips are still full and pouty and his hair is light brown - he is such a gorgeous kid. He's going to be quite the charmer.

If he wants something, he'll let you know by pointing to it and making a desperate "uh-uh-uh!" sound.

He's started throwing little fits when he doesn't get what he wants. His face explodes into a loud cry/scream and his whole body stiffens up and he makes fists. I really can't help but laugh because he looks so angry. And it passes pretty quickly, so I try to not react and mostly try not to laugh at it.

He is such an amazing eater, he will eat almost anything we give him, including Justin's recent concoction of brown rice and zucchini! We are trying to feed the kids all healthy foods and so far Leo is way more open than Belle is. Belle eats healthy but it's harder to get her to try new things. I want to do a post on their food soon, so check back for that.

He is crazy about board books! We've started the bedtime/naptime routine that we do with Belle including reading a story before bed. It's really piqued his interest and now he'll sit and flip through board books on his own and will sometimes bring one over to us and hand it to us to read to him.

If you say "Leo clap your hands" without showing him, he will clap his hands. He also can nod his head "yes" and "no" if you ask him (without showing him). He also knows to wave bye-bye when you say it and knows "kiss" and "hug" and will give you one if you ask. Although (the same thing happened with Belle) I ask for kisses too much and now he just ignores me.

He has a puppy and kitty that he sleeps with. We were at a bookstore one day and a little girl was holding a stuffed puppy and she dropped it when she left. Leo rushed over to it and grabbed it and started kissing and cuddling with it and then took it with him while exploring the store. So of course I bought it for him and he sleeps with it every night. Then last weekend we were at another bookstore and a little stuffed cat (the same colors as his puppy) was sitting high on a shelf. He did his "uh-uh-uh" pointing to it and I took it down and handed it to him and he started giggling and kissing and cuddling it immediately. So now he has puppy and kitty.

He met Abby's little sister Maggie last weekend and was so adorable with her! He kept petting her and leaning in to kiss her and wanted to kiss her only on the mouth. He was completely enamored and knew to be sweet and gentle with her. He also grabbed her toes and make a laughing shrieking sound (a game Justin plays with him). It was really the sweetest thing to watch, seeing him be so nurturing toward a baby.

Other than that Leo is such a perfect and healthy little boy. He is only taking one of the two naps we put him down for each day - if he takes one he won't take the other, but we put him down twice anyway because if we don't he gets really cranky. And he is finally sleeping all the way through the night! Not long after his first birthday he stopped his 4-5 AM feeding. I think taking away the bottle has something to do with it. Who wants a cup of milk in the middle of the night?

He's also doing Gymboree with William every Thursday morning and loves it. His favorite thing to do is to climb up the slides and then push himself down backwards (as you can see in the video a few posts below). He's even mastering the bigger bumpy slides!

He is a such a happy boy, although he doesn't nap well and when he doesn't he gets cranky, for the most part he is happy and funny and so bright. Belle and him get along really well, she really loves him and is so good with him. She is sharing and really understanding when he tries to get in her way or messes up her toys. It's so fun to see them laugh and start to play together, it's really the best feeling and we could not be luckier to have two such amazing kids.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Leo is walking!

He literally went from taking two steps on Thursday to walking across the room on Friday!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Leo turned 1!

A couple of weeks ago we celebrated the first birthday of our amazing little boy. It was a special day because we had all of our family and some of our closest friends with us. I decided this year to get his birthday cake from a bakery (Virginia Bakery in Berkeley - their cakes are incredible!). I asked them if they had any cake designs with bugs on them and when I saw the garden cake they had, I knew I'd do his whole party as a garden theme. It turned out really cute and we had a really great time. Abby's mom Sarah also took some really great pictures that I'm hoping to share soon. Here are some pictures from my camera...

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Much like Belle, he was not a fan of his apple sauce smash cake. 
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I also updated Leo's milestones page

Monday, April 22, 2013


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Belle is the funniest, smartest, most compassionate little girl I have ever met. She is adding numbers together and is learning how to spell and read words. She is really interested in how things are spelled and will always ask us how to spell words she comes across. She will also say a word, make the sound of the first letter of the word and say that "that word starts with the letter...". It's so amazing how her mind works and you can really see her trying to figure things out. It's fascinating and it also makes me really proud. 

She is also hilarious. Last night she got out of bed at 10 o'clock to tell us, "I have something really important to tell you right away!" Naturally we were curious. "You have to pass the test and if you pass it you can either become a prince or princess in training". Ummm, ok. Go to bed Belle you sassy thing. 

She is really into the show Super Why right now and keeps talking about "". The other night I asked her what that meant and she said "that's a really good question mom, I'm actually glad you asked me such a good question". 

She overheard Justin and I talking about a trip he's taking to San Diego and she said, "why do you keep making up names of sand? Where's Sand Dora?" I said, "what are you talking about Belle?" and she said, "You said San Diego and San Pablo, where's Sand Dora?" 

She is so unbelievably kind and compassionate. I take William and Leo to Gymboree every Thursday and since Belle was on Spring Break last week she came along to help. William was having a hard time so Belle wrapped her arms around him and said "it's ok buddy, I love you William, it's ok." I almost cried it was the sweetest thing ever. She also gave me a kiss yesterday and told me "love is the best present". Where does she come up with this stuff? I think anyone who is or will be loved by Belle in the future are the luckiest people. She has so much to give and her heart is so big. Today Belle, Leo and I were rolling balls around the living room playing and having fun and Belle comes over, gives me a big hug and says "this is the most fun family time, mommy". 

We are still doing her question a day books and any time there is a question that is looking for a negative answer, she will not answer it. One question the other day was "what is the worst thing about having a brother/sister?" and she said "Nothing, I love having a baby brother". Or "Have you felt lonely lately?" she said "No because I always have my family with me". She just makes my heart melt completely. 

The other night I was at yoga and Justin was putting the kids to bed and Leo threw up and had to change his sheets. He put Leo on the floor and he lost it. Belle came rushing over and gave Leo hugs and kisses telling him "it's ok buddy, sissy is here, it's ok" After Justin told her how sweet and helpful she had been Belle said "You have to tell mommy I helped Leo ok?" Ha! That made me laugh.

She also loves taking her clothes off at school but she knows I don't like it. She strips down to her underwear but I like her to at least have bottoms on when she is playing in the sand and mud. One afternoon Justin went to pick her up and she was just in her underwear and Justin had a talk with her about keeping her bottoms on and Belle said, "mom is going to be mad, can you please not tell her until after I'm asleep?" Haha!

She is still wearing pull ups at night. We decided to try and go cold turkey taking away her pull ups and every night for a week she had an accident. Talking to her pediatrician, she told me that it's hereditary and not to worry, 15% of kids wear pull ups at night when they're potty trained and of that 15%, 15% every year outgrow it. I'm pretty sure I wet the bed until an embarrassing age so I guess I can't blame anyone but myself! 

At her four year checkup she was in the 95% for height and 75% for weight. For her height she's slightly underweight but with a dad that's tall and skinny too, the doctor said that it's hereditary and nothing to be concerned about. 

She is thriving at school. She says hello to every adult as soon as she walks through the gate and her teachers say how much they look forward to it. 

She is such a little blessing and I am so proud of the little girl she is turning out to be. 

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Leo is our classic second child so far. He gets to eat foods that Belle didn't even know existed until she was 2 or older. He's tried ice cream, chocolate, goldfish and pasta. He also doesn't take our "no's" seriously, because well, our follow through with "no" isn't what it was the first time around. He has way more freedom, "you want to play with that long pointy thing? Pull out pots and pans? Eat some paper? Sure why not." 

He is crawling and cruising everywhere. He is into everything. He has stood up on his own momentarily but still hasn't mastered his balance. He can stand and cruise with one hand though, so he's getting there! But no rush.

He is so into electronics it's scary. You cannot open a laptop or use an iPad or phone without him climbing all over you. If a remote is in his sight, he goes for it and desperately tries to turn the TV on. Let me follow this by saying, he does not watch TV unless Belle is watching it which is usually while Leo is sleeping. He also doesn't know what to do with a computer, iPad or phone so where his obsession comes with I have no idea. Maybe he sees us using them? Or maybe it's the fact that I may have played him Gangnam Style more than few times on Youtube. But who knows. 

He babbles completely incoherently and hasn't mastered repeating back sounds yet. 

As far as tricks,
- He can wave "hi" and "bye" and also waves when we say "goodnight". 
- He blows kisses by putting his hand on his mouth and then pulling it away in your direction. 
- He plays "peek-a-boo" by placing his hands on the side of his head and then opening his arms out wide.
- He also loves to clap for himself when we say "yay Leo!"
- He can catch a ball if it's rolled to him and can roll it back. 
- He shakes his head "no" when you ask him something he doesn't want. 
- He also gives kisses by opening his mouth and leaning in. He doesn't always give them to me or Justin but he will climb up onto Belle to plant one on her. 
- He is infatuated with the picture of the baby on his yogurt (he eats yogurt for breakfast every day). He always points at the baby and even kisses it. It's so funny!
- He uses a sippy cup! He still takes a bottle before naps and bedtime, but during the day he uses the sippy cup.
- If you say "hello?" he'll hold up whatever is in his hand to his ear like a telephone and smile.
- If people around him are laughing, he'll throw his head back and laugh too as if he's in on the joke. He has the best squinty-eyed, crinkle nosed laugh, it's hysterical.

He is eating more and more solid food every day. His favorites are: cheese (shredded or slices of cheddar), waffles, wheat crackers, goldfish, pasta, oranges, toast and cheese quesadillas. Sometimes he'll eat pieces of a grilled cheese or peanut butter and jelly sandwich. He's very hesitant to touch foods he doesn't recognize or that are too slimy. I always try to give him fruit but he won't touch it on his own. He does not like bananas or avocados, unlike Belle. He still eats baby food for the most part because it's the only way I can get fruits, veggies and protein into him. I try to give him pureed baby food of the good stuff before I'll give him crackers or the less healthy things he loves. He also loves Odwalla C-Monster and Superfood Juice. I put it in a sippy cup and he inhales it. 

Every morning he either gets scrambled eggs and toast or a waffle with Odwalla and yogurt. Lunches are a pouch of some organic fruit or vegetable and pieces of whatever I've made for William (cheese, sandwiches, crackers, etc.). Dinner is usually baby food with some sort of protein (chicken, turkey, lentils or grains) with a fruit or vegetable mixed in. 

He still is not sleeping a full twelve hours at night! I think because he is sick all the time it throws him off. He's either waking up with a hacking cough or some other ailment and then gets in a routine of 4 AM feedings. It's a work in progress!

He also no longer sleeps in a "sleep sack" and now uses a regular blanket. 

Friday, April 5, 2013


Almost two weeks ago, late on a Saturday night, Justin and I faced the most difficult night of our lives so far as parents (not difficult in the grand scheme of things, but difficult in perspective to our somewhat mellow lives as parents so far). It involved multiple phone calls to the doctor, vomiting, crying and carpet cleaning/sheet changing until 1 AM. It was pretty horrific. Both kids were inexplicably sick. Throwing up multiple times, but no fever or any other symptoms (other than the crying of course). It was crazy. The next morning (a Sunday morning), I took them to the on call doctor to get checked out. Belle was already feeling much better, but that Saturday night was the third night in a row that Leo had woken up in the middle of the night vomiting. The doctor thought maybe Belle had a 24 hour virus that was going around and Leo likely had a cold that was lasting a little longer. Nothing we could do about it but wait it out. 

We kept Belle home from school on Monday which was probably a mistake because after our tired, mellow Sunday she was full of energy and ready to go. Leo on the other hand has continued to struggle. For almost a week after that he woke up every night multiple times with a horrible hacking cough that wouldn't stop until it ended in throwing up all over everything. Daily laundry was done, it was kind of a nightmare. He also would barely eat anything during the day. It was a struggle to get him to eat more than a few bites of anything. This past week he's been doing a little better. He's still waking up at night with a horrible cough but isn't vomiting (as much). 

Poor Leo has been sick almost non stop for the past four months. Everyone tells me it's second child syndrome, the older one with the stronger immune system brings home all the germs from school and the little one can't fight them all. Despite the fact that I strip Belle and put clean clothes on her every day when she gets home from school and I scrub her hands and feet. I'm hoping it will make him that much stronger when he starts school but we're going on almost a year without a full night's sleep and it's really wearing on all of us. I feel the worst for him though because he's so tiny and helpless and I wish I could be sick instead. 

Oh and since I haven't blogged in a while, I haven't mentioned that right after Belle's birthday party, Leo got really sick again and his bronchiolitis came back. He was put on an inhaler to help his poor little lungs and will likely have asthma when he gets older. 

Monday, March 11, 2013

That time Belle turned 4

More than a week ago, our first born turned four. We are still kind of in shock. We cannot believe how big, mature, beautiful, smart, outgoing and kind our little girl is. She amazes us every single day. I can't speak for Justin but a big part of me is so proud of what an amazing person Belle is becoming and part of me wonders how such a person came from me. She is truly the love of our lives. Every day I am so thankful that I get to be her mommy, it is such a blessing and we are so lucky.

Belle's party at Pump It Up.
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Her school BFF's - Lyle and Nikhil.
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Her non-school BFF's - Margaux and Abby.
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Her homefries.
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Her school day celebration. Each kid gets to bring a wrapped book to open up on their birthday that is then donated to the school.
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Jumping over the candlestick at circle time with Lyle.
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On her actual birthday Justin got her a pirate pinata and all of her neighborhood friends came to help knock it open. 
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