Cam’s First Friend!!

Cam has many friends, but they are all kids of friends and neighbors. In fact, if you ask him who his friends are, he says “I have 2 friends, Kaya and Morgan. I only have 2 friends, I was just born that way.”

Kaya is our neighbor across the street (she also goes to the same preschool) and Morgan is our friends’ daughter, the one who is just 8 days older than Cam. So, as far as close friends go, those are the ones he gets to play with often and that I think he feels completely comfortable with.

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Cam and Morgan playing dress-up. Note the sparkly shoes!

Cam has been going to preschool for about 8 months now and it hasn’t been easy for him. While he does great in school (his progress report confirms this and his teachers say he’s doing a good job), he still has a very hard time getting excited about school days. He cries or at least whines every school morning and has to be coaxed and urged and bribed to get ready, out the door and into school. It’s tough on us too. Well, let’s be real, mostly Joe. I don’t even witness it most days. But that’s why we’ve been so eager for him to make friends.

Every couple weeks we ask who he played with and who is friends are at school and he always answers that his best friend is Mrs. Karla. Mrs. Karla is the Director and while she’s very sweet, we’ve been waiting for the day he names a classmate.

And it happened!!! Finally!

Last night after stories and before falling asleep, we were talking about his week and I said, “I’m so glad you had a good week at school and now it’s the weekend so you won’t go back for 4 days.”

He replied, “Aww, but I’ll miss River!”

I wanted to shriek and hug him, but I had to play it cool. I said, “Oh, is River a nice person?”

And he said, “Yes, she’s nice and sometimes we play together, but sometimes people are already sitting next to her and she’s blocked. I can’t sit next to her.”

This was the second mention of River this week, so we know she’s real, but I guess we’ll have to wait to find out who this person is and if the friendship is mutual.

I’m hoping hoping hoping that this helps him get into a better place on school days. I’m also hoping River’s a cool girl and she doesn’t crush my little guy’s heart. Because if she does, I’ll have some words to share.

In the meantime, I’ll keep working on his idea of friends and that he can make new friends anytime he wants. I’ve been trying to explain to him what an ‘open mind’ is… I think he kind of gets it. We’ll see.

 

Demi Grey at 1 Year Old

Where do you even begin when you talk about your own kid? Seriously there are so many things I can say about Demi Grey. She’s so funny, happy, smart, expressive, beautiful, musical, curious, physical, hungry, and she knows what she wants! She is such a joy all the way around and I’ve heard this expression come up a few times recently and I believe it to be true. Demi is a part of our present and our future, but somehow she is also a part of our past. Even before she was in my belly, she was a part of us. Our family always had Demi Grey.

So let’s break down this little character. Some things she loves:

  • stroller surfing (mostly with Dad because nobody else likes doing it)
  • food, food, all the food. She even recently ate an Asian rice covered in Sriracha sauce and strips of ginger from a sushi dish. If she eats a giant meal and then you start your meal, she gets angry, as if to say “why would you eat in front of me, I’m starving!”
  • being chased as she crawls or pushes one of her walkers
  • Dada and saying “dada”… she will say “dada” no fewer than 300 times per day, sometimes shrieking it
  • baths–tries to scale the side of the bathtub while it’s filling up and can’t let brother have a bath in peace, she yells at the door for someone to let her in

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  • her grandmas and grandpas. She reaches her arms up or out for all of them.
  • soft things, she loves burying her face in Big Bear and fresh laundry
  • music, she wiggles and dances and gets excited to hear music
  • her water cup
  • playing in the sand
  • practicing walking (she’s so close!)
  • emptying baskets and filling them back up
  • knocking over towers
  • shoes, who knew this was a girl thing, but Cam never obsessed over shoes. This girl is constantly trying to get her feet into everyone else’s shoes
  • going grocery shopping. She spins and swirls in the seat and says hi to all the patrons. We taste the samples at Trader Joe’s, so she loves that, but at Vons, they somehow always rush over with pastries and fruit for her even though they don’t technically offer samples. Is it her hungry eyes?
  • brother, obviously. She loves brother even though he is only sweet to her once per day, then he turns evil. He wants everything she touches (and takes it) and he likes laying down like a speedbump in front of her so she can’t crawl or push her cart forward. Even still he makes her laugh more than anyone. At the lake a couple days ago, he was jumping in puddles and she just kept laughing and laughing.
  • Night walks in the carrier. She often does her sleep yells which slow down until she’s asleep.

Some things she hates:

  • sleeping alone. Oh man, this is going to make for an interesting time getting her back into her crib at night.
  • waiting for food. Obviously.
  • strange bearded men, and some not-so-strange bearded men. and some not-so-strange men she knows but just can’t get over the hump with (namely UnCoco, neighbor Scott and Gabriel).

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  • getting her diaper changed. We call it the alligator roll. You lay her down and she screams and rolls aggressively to the side to escape our grip.
  • putting on jammies. The top is the worst. Maybe this is actually something I hate… whenever we put her long-sleeved jammies on, she screams the whole way through and her sticky little fingers get stuck inside the sleeves, which are already tight to begin with. Add the fact that she’s usually tired makes this one big hot mess.
  • when mama or dada leave and close the door, especially if she was crawling after us. Devastation.
  • Hats and other things on her head. Unless she put them there–things like my underwear.

Her stats:

  • Her 5th and 6th teeth were breaking through ON her 1st birthday. They are now both there in plain sight. So, 6 total teeth and she’s gnawing on her finger, so I think we have some more coming imminently.
  • She is 25 lbs and 5 ozs (97th %ile)
  • She is 2′ 6.5″ (85th %ile)
  • Her head is 18.5″ around (92nd %ile)
  • She wears size 18-24 month clothing and I think she’s thinning out/plateuing even though she’s still a chubby li’l thing.
  • Number of words: probably around 10. Ball, bird, mama, dada, uh-oh (does that count?), hi, bye (or bye-bye), cheese, eye, toe. She once said “I did it” and I have that on camera, though I don’t know if it was on purpose.
  • She knows what sound a cow, monkey and elephant make and can make them
  • She knows where her eyes, nose and mouth are, but is better at pointing these things out on a doll
  • Can blow a kiss and often does so on her own, is very physically balanced/in control of her body, she’s a great climber and has almost no falls/incidents to date, likes switching lights on and off
  • While looking at pictures, we can say ‘where is the baby?’ and she can often point to what we ask
  • She likes playing with light switches and is intrigued by electrical outlets (we have baby proofed, but that hasn’t stopped her fascination)

Favorite moments from year 1:

  • being born, duh!
  • meeting everyone!
  • going on a boat

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  • going to the beach
  • first everything–Easter, 4th of July, vacation, plane flight, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Hanukkah, etc!
  • playing with the otter in Bend, OR
  • learning she will have a baby cousin in July 2018!
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Grandma’s Ale at Sunriver Brewing, where we found out Demi Grey will not be the youngest grandbaby!
  • getting a cameo on the local news
  • her birthday party!! All 4 grandparents, kids running amok, beautiful day, cake and perfect presents.

Least favorite moments from year 1:

  • Blowing out at Brother’s 3rd birthday celebration at school

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  • Demi hasn’t really been sick nor has she had any spills (Cam had a few including a big one rolling off the bed around 7 months), so she really hasn’t had many low-lights in year 1
  • Though, there was that unspeakable day when… is it too soon to talk about?… umm… when Demi blew out in her room while daddy was snoozing on the floor and… umm… she put her poopie hand in his mouth. I know.

And this video just makes me laugh. I’ve probably posted it before, but it’s a good one to end on because the poor girl just doesn’t know what’s going on!

Demi Grey’s First Birthday Party

I managed not to cry. My baby is ONE! And we celebrated on her actual birthday with a whole bunch of wonderful people who love her very much.

I plan to put together another post that records everything about Demi at one year old, but for now, I just have to get all the pictures up. She was cute. The decor was cute. The guests were cute. The kids were cute.

Highlights of the day:

  • The cuteness of Demi Grey. One year old is just so fun.
  • 4 grandparents lovin’ on their little granddaughter
  • Demi trying on her new flip flops
  • The older kids blowing their “frog tongues”, bouncing in the bounce house, swinging on the tire swing and having a dance party in the living room
  • Demi smashing the smash cake … she ate at least half of that monstrous cupcake and would have continued if we hadn’t intervened

On this day, 2 years ago

This photo/memory popped up in my facebook feed today. CE9B9747-9E67-4D8B-BF29-C660E2FF0D27

Of course I see the cutie patootie Cam-bone in his rainy day gear in front of a perfect red fence not long after he learned how to walk.

Buuuuuuuuut I also see the scab on his nose.

Want to know what it’s from?

It’s from a couple days prior when we were at the bagel shop with Regina and Morgan. Cam was playing peek-a-boo by hiding behind one of the wooden pillars and pulling his head back out.

He did it several times in a row and then he bent his knees down while his head was between the wooden pillars and his head got wedged. Stuck.

He immediately panicked. As did I.

But I grabbed him and pulled him up and out, dragging his face along the wood, leaving scrapes and splinters on his nose and forehead.

The fact that he hasn’t gotten his head stuck in anything else since then (knock on wood, har har!) means we’re all doing something right.

 

Real Stat: 50% of Life with Cam is Spent Talking Like a Character

For at least the last year, Cam has wanted us to be the voice of his stuffed animals, bath toys, action figures, and really anything with a face and a mouth. I still remember how he used to tell us to use a voice: “he talk.”

It used to be mostly in the bathtub where we would create stories with his magnetic fishes or the Dory figurines. We’d play hide-and-seek with the otter saying “hello!” when Cam found him under the bubbles.

More recently, this has picked up steam and I estimate that approximately 50% of our communications with Cam go through his toys. Sometimes when he is being difficult or defiant, we can get him over the hump by talking like a toy. Seriously.

Just this evening when Cam said “I’m still hungry” after he’d already eaten a few different post-dinner snacks, we told him to have some of my lemon chicken. He said he didn’t like lemon chicken. And so I told him that Iron Man loves it and said like Iron Man “I love lemon chicken, yum yum yum.” Cam immediately popped up and shoved a big piece of lemon chicken in his mouth.

I especially love when Cam gets used to Joe doing a particular voice and then he asks me to make Spiderman talk, but when I do he says (totally straight faced, totally serious), “that’s not his voice.”

While it’s ridiculous sometimes, most often he is expressing such rich imagination that it is so fun to listen to. It makes me smile. I love hearing him teach his animals how to brush their teeth and why it’s important. I love listening to him talk about his plan to build a cannon to launch the cannon ball into the alien guns. I love hearing him consult monkey on whether or not we picked the right bedtime books.

Side bar: he is obsessed with Joe’s childhood action heroes. Cam doesn’t even know where they come from and has never seen a movie or even a YouTube clip of them. He calls them “the superheroes” and takes them on our walks, takes them into the bathtub, props them up in a circle and gives them game pieces for a round of “Candy World” (Candy Land). It has been a few weeks now and the novelty hasn’t worn off. I think these guys are here to stay.

“See superheroes, this is how you brush your teeth.”

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I think I’ll be asking Cam to finish his dinner with Captain America’s voice for the foreseeable future. And that’s okay with me.

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