Alice: 18 months

We had two milestone birthdays this past month, with B turning 4 and Allie turning 18 months. I’ll use that as an excuse for why this update is actually being posted on the day that A turns 19 months. The Second Child Syndrome really does get worse with each passing month.

This seemed to be a month where things happened in the blink of an eye. For example, she cut multiple teeth at once (we think she has 12 now, but it’s hard to count) and started to string three word sentences together practically overnight. It seems that both of these things have enhanced her love of food, as she can now chomp down on things like apples and carrots and can ask for “more broccoli, mama” at the dinner table.

(Lest you think she is a healthy eater all the time, she—and B—also discovered Kit-Kats this month and both of them are in love).

The only thing that hasn’t happened yet is achieving the status of being a diaper free household. But, potty training continues to go well, and I’m hopeful that we will be there soon!

At her 18 month doctor’s appointment, Allie weighed in at 24 pounds, 4.7 ounces and was 2 feet and 8 inches long. She is mostly wearing 24 months and some 2T clothing.

Allie’s favorite things this month include playing with her baby dolls, giving hugs to her sister, reading books in the car and riding her tricycle. Dislikes include being kept waiting for food, having her hair rinsed in the bathtub and socks. It was around the 18 month mark that we started to refer to B as “Bi-Polar Express” and this label seems to fit Alice as well.

There was a lot going on this month, and we went on quite a few adventures, as seen below:

Hunting for butterflies at Tyler Arboretum

Scarfing down cake at B’s 4th Birthday Party

Enjoying her first Phillies/Cubs game (we lasted one inning in the seats)

Double fisting apples at Linvilla

Happy 18 months to our Allie Girl! We love you more than Kit-Kat!

Alice: 17 Months

There is something so sweet about a little one who is hovering between the baby and toddler stage.

This is the stage of those first unsolicited and totally genuine hugs and kisses; the stage of increasing curiosity and wonder; the stage where even the tantrums are adorable; the stage where cheeks are still chubby enough that mama can’t help biting them.

Having experienced this stage of life with two kids, I can easily say that it is my favorite. This time around, though, brings the bittersweetness of knowing that this is the last time I’ll witness all of this with my own babies. I am trying to savor every second of this time between the end of A’s babyhood and her entry into toddlerhood, but she is not helping me because she seems to be doing everything even earlier and faster than her sister did.

Fortunately, she still loves to be held and cuddled. Sometimes, she’s pretty demanding about it, and although she weighs a ton, I usually give in. Often, she’ll yell, “Baby!” and she’ll arrange herself in my arms so that I’m cradling her, just like I did when she was a newborn. Then, just as quickly as the game started, she decides she wants to get down, and she’s off and running (literally) to the next thing.

This month, Allie’s became even more interested in the potty, and she’s even used it a couple of times!  Even when she doesn’t go, she loves the whole routine of sitting on it, using toilet paper, washing her hands and flushing. All the credit goes to my mom, who is the Potty Training Whisperer. Sorry, A and B, when it’s time to potty train your own kids, you are going to have to go ask Nee-Nee for help.

Her vocabulary seems to be exploding at the moment. She’s fully of questions, always asking “wha?” and “why?” and I particularly love the way she pronounces her name (“Al-di!”) and the word broccoli (“baa-key!”).

Speaking of broccoli, I would say that’s pretty much her favorite food right now, along with “mupp-ins” (muffins) and just about anything sweet—yes, both of my kids definitely take after me in that regard. She’s getting very good with using a fork and spoon, but still loves to slather yogurt all over her arms as if it’s lotion. So, if you are ever around us after lunch and wonder why she reeks of strawberry banana, that’s why.

Alice’s favorite things right now include the Teletubbies, singing and dancing, the Baby Lit version of Emma, her bumblebee backpack (a hand-me-down from B, naturally) and afternoons on the deck, where she blows bubbles, collects acorns and keeps watch for the neighborhood bunny.

I’m not sure if this is the stage where sibling rivalry is supposed to start (I don’t have time to Google this stuff anymore), but I’ve noticed that the “fights” between A and B have picked up a bit. If A has a toy, B immediately wants it, even if it’s a thing she hasn’t played with in months. If B is getting a bit of attention, A isn’t shy about loudly voicing her displeasure. Sometimes, I intervene, and other times I just let them go at it and work it out for themselves (My brother and I didn’t succeed in killing each other, despite our multiple attempts, so I have reason to believe that A and B won’t succeed in doing each other in, either). Still, if A is crying, B is usually the one who can make her feel better and if B is upset, Allie goes right up to her to offer a hug or a toy. It’s nice to see that they have each other’s backs already.

A’s been enjoying summer fun, both at home and otherwise:

Enjoying a snack at a birthday party

Scarfing up seconds of Uncle Billy’s plum tart

Visting the ancient dioramas at the Academy of Natural Sciences…

…and, making friends with a turtle

Zoo day!

All about that #decklife

Taking the new backyard swing set for a spin, nine hours after Daddy started the assembly

Happy 17 (almost 18!) months, Allie Girl! We love you more than mupp-ins!

Alice: 16 months

 

Since Allie will turn 17 months in just three days, this seems like a good time to post her 16 month update!

It’s hard to think about Allie without bringing up B, especially since Allie wants to do everything that “Bid-gee” does. B was pretty tolerant in the beginning, but now, screaming matches are a regular occurrence. It’s a toss up between who is the loudest person in the house at this point. At what point is it okay to lock myself in the bathroom, with earplugs, and just let them sort it out for themselves?

It doesn’t help that, like her sister, Allie seems to have entered the terrible twos, fashionably early. O-M-G. The tantrums. Not just a little tear here and there, but a full on, red-in-the-face, writhing on the floor meltdowns. It’s a sight to behold. Fortunately, she hasn’t had one of these incidents in public yet, but I know it’s only a matter of time.

Allie continues to add new words to her vocabulary. She can point to any name various body parts and even has some two sentence phrases, like “E-Go” which translates to “Here You Go!” She’s also started to call me mommy and the way she says it makes me weak in the knees. However, her most favorite words at the moment are poop, potty and pee-pee. I would like to think this means we’ll be ditching the diapers soon; she knows when she has a full diaper, but isn’t showing consistent interest in using the bathroom like a regular person—apparently, she just has a potty mouth.

Enjoying a visit to the Please Touch Museum on the 4th of July

Along the same lines, Allie’s current favorite thing to do is to flush the toilet repeatedly, so our water bill should be sky high this month. She also loves nose kisses, “reading” catalogs of any type, posing for photos with my phone (Cheeeeeese!” she says), and the Hot Dog Dance from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, blowing bubbles and playing with baby dolls. She seems to want to be carried more often than ever these days, and while I love the opportunity to snuggle her, she is getting pretty heavy (But, not being picked up is the source of many tantrums…see above).

Cruising along at the Zoo.

Her least favorite thing seems to be shoes, as she takes them off at the earliest opportunity—usually in the car, so she can chew on her toes…which is just super weird.

She got one more tooth this month and is using it to devour blueberries, watermelon and strawberries. It also seems like she is trying to transition from two naps a day to one, which is good because it will open up the days for us, and bad because it’s nice for B to get at least a couple of hours of one-on-one time during the day.

Happy (very belated) 16 months, Allie! We love you more than Fourth of July fireworks!

Alice: 15 months

At 15 months old, Allie is more outspoken than ever. She’s been loud from day one, but it seems to have escalated this month, as she and her sister compete to see who can yell the loudest. B usually starts things off with a high pitched shriek for no apparent reason, Alice follows suit, and then B corrects her with a stern “Allie, stop screaming!” Apparently, practice of siblings trying to get each other in trouble starts early.

Lately, she insists on holding something for her photos. This month, it was a Tiffany’s pouch. Starting her young!

At her most recent doctor’s appointment, Allie weighed in at just over 23 pounds and was a little over 2.5 feet tall. She’s got one more tooth poking through her bottom gum, which will bring her grand total to eight!

Alice understands everything, so it is fairly easy to communicate requests to do certain things, and not to not do others. This month, I’ve noticed that if we ask her a question, she’ll say “Um…” before replying, as if she is really considering all of the options. She picks up new words on a regular basis. My personal favorites are “Awwww!” (mostly reserved for pictures and videos of cats. She will love the Internet someday). “hun-gee!” (hungry), is “dit!” (sit, usually accompanied by a firm pounding on the chair for emphasis. She, herself, has also developed a fondness for sitting in grown-up chairs and on B’s bed, so we hear this request a lot).

Allie’s love of books continues to grow (and I love how she asks us to “ree!”). It’s still hard to get her to sit still for story time, but she will gladly go about her business of destroying the house while being read to, so I consider that a win. Her current favorites are “Goodnight Moon” and the Baby Lit edition of the “Wizard of Oz.” We recently took our first trip to the library and I wish that I had my video camera out to capture Allie’s delighted expression as she took in all the books.

Other favorite things include her “lubby” (lovey, which is her little giraffe blankie), playing Ring-Around-the-Rosie and hide-and-seek with her sister, dancing to “Pop Goes the Weasel,” humming songs to herself, flipping the light switches and slamming doors.

Other fun experiences this month included attending her first wedding (congratulations Aunt Sabrina and Uncle Mike!), celebrating B’s pre-k graduation and spending lots of time playing outside.

Wedding day for Aunt Sabrina and Uncle Mike!

On B’s move-up day, at the moment that B was about to break down because there was not a balloon for her. Alice asks for help escaping her sister’s wrath.

A visit to Tyler Arboretum. Photo credit to Auntie B.

At lunch after Tyler, where she ate all of Auntie B’s fries.

A Saturday afternoon playing outside, trying on her sister’s “hat.”

Happy 15 months Allie Girl! We love you more than bubbles on a summer day!

Alice: 14 Months

So, here’s a 14 month post that’s really more like a 15 month post because…second child syndrome.

Alice’s walking skills continue to improve. She’s learned how to bend her knees like a real human being, but she’s lost that Franken-Baby gait. She does this adorable thing where she walks with both hands behind her back like she’s an old Italian man surveying his tomato plants. It kills me.

Alice seemed to go from being pretty much uninterested in milk to being a total addict. When we first switched her over to it at a year, she sometimes would take only a few sips of it a day. All of a sudden, she can’t get enough of it. She’ll down a cup in five seconds flat and then hangs from the handle of the fridge, yelling “milk!” at the top of her lungs, in an attempt to get some more. New favorite foods this month include red peppers; least favorite foods include pork of any type. Alice has seven teeth now. It seems that things are speeding up in the teething department, so I’m projecting that she’ll have a full set by first grade.

One of the cutest things that Alice has learned over the last few weeks is the meaning of the word “yes.” I love the very deliberate way she will nod her head up and down in the affirmative when asked a question. New words include, “Digit” (Bridget) “bubble,” “boon” (balloon), whaaat?” (said exactly like that), “hair bow” (she always asks me to put one in her hair, for the sole purpose of pulling it off), “dis” (this) and “hab dis” (my favorite use of this is when she is walking around with a lovey in one hand a stuffed cat in the other and she shoves them into my hands so that she can grab her cup of milk).

Alice’s favorite book at the moment is “Huggy Kissy.” It’s a personal favorite of mine, too, because the baby in the book reminds me so much of A. She’s still in love with cats, and tries to feed those of the stuffed variety. She has a fondness for sticking magnets on the fridge and playing with the Water Wow book that the Easter Bunny left in her basket.

The craziest of cat ladies

Speaking of Easter, I don’t think that I shared any photos of Alice from that day, so here are a few!

It won’t be too long until Allie is 15 months, so I’ll be back with another (fashionably late) update soon.

Alice: 13 Months

Apparently, I won’t be getting any better with posting Allie’s monthly updates in a timely manner in her second year! She is closer to 14 months than 13 now, but I’m sharing anyway…

In the past couple of weeks Allie has officially become a walker. Literally, from one minute to the next, she went from taking a few tentative steps and falling on her butt to striding across the room. Her stiff-legged style has earned her the nickname “Franken-Baby.” It’s adorable. Of course, now that she can get into everything, she is more of a hurricane than before. Most days involve following her around the house, while she takes toys out of bins and books off the shelves, proudly leaving a trail of debris in her wake.

A is the proud owner of her first pair of real shoes, and although she cries when we first put them on her in the mornings, she doesn’t try to pull them off. This shocks me, given the fact that socks don’t stand a chance of staying on her feet (She’s been like that since she was a newborn, and I love glancing to the back of the car when we are driving and seeing those tiny toes sticking up from her rear-facing seat).

A has developed the obsession with Elmo that all toddlers inexplicably have, but kitties are her true love.  She applies the term to anything with four legs and a tail (including squirrels and poor Tracy). She will basically maul any cat of the stuffed variety and can spot the toy versions of our feline friends on the highest shelves in the store. I call her the “Crazy Cat Lady”

Other new words this month include “a-den (again), mailman and rub. The latter she definitely picked up from her sister, who loves to have her arms and legs rubbed. Sometimes, during dinner, they both beg me to rub while I’m sitting between them, which makes eating a challenge!

Alice still loves food, and although teething continues to be slow going, she now has six teeth (with the addition of two more at the top), to chew things with. Blueberries and bananas seem to be her favorite fruits—I have had to stop eating the latter in front of her, because she’ll end up yelling “I det (get) dat (that)!” and I have to give up at least half of it. Now that she’s getting more mobile—and vocal—she’ll often open up the kitchen cabinet and point inside, demanding “cack-ers.” At dinner, we pretty much give her whatever we’re eating, and it’s nice to have someone who doesn’t reject things like salmon and black beans…at least for now.

Now that Alice is more mobile and vocal, the interactions between her and B have become even more adorable. A definitely wants to keep up with—and do—everything that her big sister is doing. I mentioned in B’s update that she is in an arts and crafts phase, so Alice now loves crayons (and she is actually quite skilled at scribbling with them, for someone who is only over a year old!) and stickers, too. My particular favorite is when they dance together because it’s basically an exercise in extremes—B twirls around the room like a ballerina, while A stays in one place bouncing up and down like the awkward uncle at a wedding.

I can’t think of a good way to sum up Alice’s personality—so, I’ll just say it’s big. In social situations, she will usually start out with a serious face, while she assesses the situation, but once she is comfortable, she is generally the loudest person in the room. If she likes something that you did, she won’t hesitate to squeal with laughter to the point where she can’t catch her breath; if she is annoyed with you, she won’t hesitate to claw you across the face. There is no middle ground. I don’t think anyone will ever look at her and think “I wonder what she is thinking.” With Alice, you always know!

B: 3.5 Years Old


It’s been awhile since I’ve written a few words about my oldest baby, who turned 3 1/2 (!) last month. And, since I can’t get enough of our most recent set of family photos, this seemed to be a good time to share a Little B update!

B’s exploding social skills have been, by far, the biggest change that we have seen in the last few months. It no doubt has to do with her starting school in September. For the first month, she cried every. single. day at drop off. Then, one day, we walked in and she let go of my hand without so much as a look back. I felt so un-needed in that moment that I almost wanted her to break down and cry!

All that to say, she is no longer the little girl who refused to look at strangers when they tried to talk to her in line at Target. She loves going to parties, playing with other little kids and generally charming everyone she meets.

B’s favorite activities include any kind of craft, particularly those that involve paint, markers or crayons. She loves color—her favorite things to draw are rainbows and she takes pride in filling a coloring book page with every color in the crayon box. She is getting increasingly into imaginative play. Her favorite games are house (I’m always the baby sister, Alice is usually Tracy and B is the mom) and doctor (there is a specified routine that you need to follow when playing this game with her: stethoscope first, then check eyes/ears, take temperature. Everyone gets medicine and a bandage, whether they need it or not). She sings and dances up a storm, and she even likes some “real” music. Her current favorites include David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance” (which she calls the “Red Shoes Song”) and Marian Hill’s Down.

B seems to have adjusted well to our move, and frequently tells us how much she loves the new house. We have a little bit of a longer commute, but she loves to pass the time on the road by counting the number of Walmart trucks she sees on the highway. We never to go to Walmart, but she loves seeing the logo anywhere, solely because of this song that they used on commercials for awhile. One day, we saw eight trucks en route to South Philly, and I’m pretty sure that it was the best day of her life so far.

B is still one of the pickiest eaters that I’ve ever met. She recently developed a love for boxed macaroni and cheese. Every time she eats a bowl, she says “Look, mama/dada! Aren’t you so proud of me? I’m eating grown up food!” I assume that because the pasta has a sauce on it, and comes in fun shapes, this makes it seem fancy. When offered chicken or some other food that everyone else is eating for dinner, though, she’ll politely refuse it and say “I have to wait until I’m older to eat chicken (or fish/beef/some other food not covered in a cheese substance).

B says a lot of funny things—I’m not as good as I used to be at writing them all down, but here are a few “B-isms” from recent months that I can actually remember:

  • “Mama, maybe you can clean-up the toys by yourself. I can’t do it because my hands are too small.”
  • “No, Alice! You’re too little.” Always…doesn’t matter what Alice is doing.
  • After offering to help us get the house ready for company and dusting off one shelf: “I need to go sit down and relax now! I did a lot of work!”
  • “When you are my age, maybe you can come to my school.” Apparently, she thinks I’m Benjamin Button and will be aging backwards.
  • When I say “ouch” after sustaining some sort of injury: “Mama, do you need a bandage?”
  • She’s never one to let you live down a mistake. For example, “Mama got a flat tire and she had to go wait for the Triple A in the Starbucks and she cried. And, Nee-Nee had to come take me to school.”
  • And, yes, all of this was true. It was one of the more epic meltdowns that I have had. But, in my defense it was right around the time we moved and everything seemed to be hitting the fan. Later, when my mom asked B if she was also sad that I got a flat tire, B said “No! It wasn’t my fault.”
  • “Remember, when I was little? And I was allergic to peaches?” She has never even eaten a peach, but she’s watched the Daniel Tiger episode where he has an allergic reaction to them so many times that she thinks the show is about her.
  • “Daddy, do you love my hair? Doesn’t it look beautiful? I need to go see it in the mirror.” This is because I recently introduced her to the blow dryer, which she absolutely loves. I have created a monster.
  • “Do these ones flush by themselves?” Although B is getting much better about using public restrooms when we are out and about, she is petrified of toilets with automatic flush.
  • She knows most of the words to “Hello!” from Book of Mormon. I don’t know whether to be proud because, clearly, she is developing a love of show tunes, or ashamed because although that’s pretty much the tamest song in the show…it’s still inappropriate. It all started because our doorbell reminded me of the song, so I had to play it. B loved it immediately and demanded it on repeat. I can only imagine what people at the grocery store think when they hear her say “Hello, my name is Elder Price and I would like to share with you this book of Jesus Christ.”

If you’ve read this far and you are thinking that B sounds pretty much perfect…do not be fooled. There are plenty of moments where our sweet B disappears and a threenager rears its ugly head. We have to start getting ready about ten minutes before we actually need to leave the house because B wants to put her backpack and coat on “BY MYSELF!!” Sometimes, when we put her preferred dinner in front of her, she dissolves into a puddle of tears because she “Only wanted ten mac-and-cheeses!” “Why?” Is the most frequently used word in her vocabulary.

What will I be in for when she actually is a teenager?! Can’t I just keep her this little forever?

Allie’s Winter One-derland

It’s been a couple of weeks since Allie’s first birthday party…but, I only just took the decorations down. So, I thought I might as well share a few photos of our baby girl’s big day!

Since Allie has a February birthday, I decided to go with a Winter One-derland theme. As soon as B heard about the theme, she asked me every day if it was “time for Allie’s wintery party?” That kid loves a good celebration!

I found an adorable invitation on Etsy, and set to work pulling together some pink and gold decor, which was a mix of DIY elements and repurposed Christmas decorations.

Some “in-progress” shots from the party prep

Chester was especially excited to spend an evening punching out a million little snowflakes for the garland, as seen above. And, since I hadn’t done anything remotely creative in forever, it felt good to pull out the glue gun again.

Everything all together, over the fireplace

A’s monthly photos and some of my after Christmas Target/Pier One finds

And, then, because the universe is hilarious, it was 73 degrees and sunny on the day of the festivities. I suppose this was fortunate, because I forgot to get tights to go with Allie’s tutu and onesie ensemble. At least her little legs weren’t cold!

For the food, we ordered hoagies and sides from Primos, but I did make some snowflake shaped sugar cookies and setup a hot chocolate bar with a variety of toppings. This slow cooker hot chocolate is my new favorite, mostly because the longer it sits, the thicker it becomes!

The centerpiece of the buffet was this amazing cake from Sweetbox Bakery. We had this cake for B’s second birthday and it’s now our go-to special occasion dessert. The cake itself is light and fluffy, and the icing is a combination of marscapone, cream cheese and, I assume, crack.

Allie was in a serious mood on the day of the party, due in part to some teething difficulties (which have yet to result in an additional teeth making their appearance). She didn’t let that get in the way of enjoying the sweets!

Slightly confused by the “Happy Birthday” serenade

I was especially excited that the party would provide an excuse to entertain in our new home. We would have never been able to fit 20 plus people in our old house. And, as a result, most of our family gatherings have either been at my mom’s or in the case of all of B’s birthdays, at an outside venue. I’m looking forward to filling our home with family and friends for years to come!

And, finally, what would a post about a first birthday be without sharing a few photos of Alice’s cake smash session with the talented April Ziegler

Not as pretty as our Sweetbox Cake, but I made it myself!

She was hesitant at first, and seemed unsure if she could touch the cake, let alone eat it…

But, I put a little icing on my finger and she quickly got the hang of it!

She certainly did not have the same tearful reaction that her sister did!

Allie loved this birthday crown, and I was so surprised that she kept it on for her photo shoot AND party!

Alice: 12 Months

I used to think that the first year of B’s life was the fastest one of mine…until these last 365 days.

Over the last few days, I’ve been trying to remember the details around Alice’s birth and it’s all a bit fuzzy. I was pretty mad that I had to be induced, feeling like I had somehow failed in some way because my blood pressure was out of control and my body couldn’t just do what it was supposed to on its own. I have a vague memory of watching reruns of Downton Abbey and repeatedly pushing the call button to summon the night time nurse every time it felt like my epidural was wearing off.

But, I clearly remember the moment that they laid her on my chest. Alice’s eyes locked on mine instantly, and it felt like we had known each other forever.

I loved her immediately.

But, bringing her home threw me for a loop. Those first few months were hard. While I was pregnant, other mothers told me how much easier it was for them to go from one to two kids. Not so, for me.

Knowing that Alice was going to be my last baby, I tried to soak in every bit of her newborn-ness, like I did with her sister. But, it turns out that’s a lot harder to do when said newborn cries almost continuously for the first five weeks of life and you are running up and down the steps with a potty train a 2.5 year old.

I remember my exact worst moment: standing in the kitchen, holding a wailing three-week old Alice, willing a bottle to just warm up faster god damn it, while an over tired B tugged on my pant leg while yelling “Mama, mama, mama” over and over again at top volume. All I could do was stare straight ahead and cry myself.

It took months for me to begin to feel like myself again and months after that to even begin to figure how to balance the demands of two tiny humans, along with all of the other things that life dishes out.

But, suddenly, one day, our new normal actually felt…well, normal. It was like she had always been in our lives.

And, before I knew it, it was February 18 again, and the littlest love of my life woke up as a one-year old. She is taking tentative baby steps, learning new words every day (her latest phrase is “good girl”) and getting bigger–in terms of size (21 pounds, 9.5 ounces and 2 and a half feet tall!) and personality–every day.

It’s hard to put into words all of the reasons that Alice is so special…but I’ll try:

Most days, it seems that no one loves life more than our Allie Girl. She smiles with her entire body, and when she laughs, her eyes crinkle so much that they are reduced to tiny little slits. When I’m having a down moment, all I have to do is think of her little face and I can’t help but laugh, too.

In spite of this extreme goofiness, she has a serious side. I frequently catch her in a daydream or intently studying her toys to figure out their inner workings. So, it seems that she’ll either be a stand-up comedian or an engineer.

A always seems to know when someone needs a hug, kiss, a laugh or a pat on the head (for her friends of the four-legged variety). I love how much she loves B. Just this morning, the two of them walked across the living room floor holding hands, and I was so happy because I know that no matter what happens in their lives they will always be each other’s “person.”

She has strong feelings, and she isn’t afraid to let you know about them. When she’s happy, she practically vibrates. When she’s pissed, it’s hard to tell the difference between her and the Hulk. She’s completely and totally herself.

I didn’t think it was possible to feel more love, joy and sense of purpose than I did when B came into our lives. And, then, along came Allie. She was the missing piece in the puzzle of our little family.

Happy Birthday, my Allie.

I’ll love you forever.

I’ll like you for always.

As long as I’m living, my baby you’ll be.

Alice: 11 Months

I tried to fix her hair for this shoot, but those wisps could not be tamed

By the time B was 11 months old, I was ready to give up on this monthly photo project, because she started to become pretty uncooperative around that time. Alice, on the other hand, LOVES having her picture taken. As soon as we set out this chair, she climbs right in and starts striking poses. It’s making me feel like it won’t be so bad to continue it past her first birthday…which is just a few days away!

Alice can stand up on her own, balance really well, and climb steps but as of this moment, I’ve only witnessed Alice take two baby steps on her own. When she figured out what was happening, she promptly plopped down on her butt. Since then, she’s taken to knee walking, which is hilarious, mostly because she resembles John Leguizamo playing Toulouse-Lautrec in Moulin Rouge! This unique style of movement gets her where she needs to go quickly, and now that she has figured out a way to stay in near constant motion, she is slowly losing her baby fat, which makes me a little bit sad!

One of Alice’s favorite things to do lately is our front window. The sill is just the right height for her to lean on and sometimes I catch her standing there, resting her head on her arms, and daydreaming. Other times, she scoots back and forth from one end to the other, taking in all the sights and generally being nosy.

Town Watch

She’s learned how to say and shake her head “No” (And, as with her sister, “yes” is taking longer to work on) and I think that I’ve started to hear some new words, too. For example, when I walk into her room in the morning, I usually say “How are you?” and she replies, “Goo!” (which I take to mean “good!”).

Alice generally doesn’t take crap from anyone. If B steals a toy from her, Alice tells her off and then attempts to steal it back. If someone gets to close to her and she’s not in the mood to share her personal space, she will try to claw their eyes out. She doesn’t seem to hold grudges though, because in the next instant she’ll give a “hug” which equate to her wrapping her tiny hands around our necks and pulling our faces towards hers for a slobbery kiss.

During the past month, she’s tried some new, non-pureed foods, including chicken, blueberries and peas. The latter was the only thing she threw on the floor. She is also getting to be a pro at using a sippy cup, which is good, because this house is becoming a bottle free zone right after she turns one…whether she likes it or not. She still has only four teeth to chew with, but we started brushing them anyway. It turns out that it’s one of the highlights of her day, probably because she thinks that the brush and paste are food.

Alice’s favorite things include putting things on her head, showing us her feet (and, when we ask her to show us her belly, hand, ears, etc., she still points to her toes) princess castle and her doll stroller. I’m trying to get her to sit still so I can read to her, but that’s a challenge! There are a few books that hold her attention, mostly of the board, textured and mirror variety, but it’s hard to get her really interested in stories. Most of the time, story time involves me sitting in the chair, reading while she scoots around on the floor. Way different from my experience reading with B, but at least it’s something!

One of this month’s highlights: First carousel ride at the Please Touch Museum

It’s hard to believe that in just a couple of weeks, we’ll be celebrating Allie’s first birthday. I’m looking forward to her party and her first birthday photo shoot and cake smash. Something tells me that she won’t be as sad about having a whole cake to herself as her sister was!

Happy 11 months, Ally O’Malley! I’ll eat you up I love you so!

My wild thing