Life as a queen in a land of many kings…

Happy 1st Birthday, Westin!

Westin, you are one!  It was such a happy occasion to celebrate your first birthday, though I’m still in slight disbelief that a year has passed already.  (True shock set in when I bought your #1 candle.)  I look at you and still can’t believe you are mine–and even better, you are mine forever.  I hope someday you will know the joy you bring me!  I’m so lucky to be your mommy!

Your birthday party was this past Saturday.  Close family and friends joined us to celebrate YOU!  You were a little sleepy and a little shy, but you shared some smiles with us when singing Happy Birthday and eating cake.  You got such a fun variety of new toys, clothing, books, and snacks as well as an heirloom toy box from your Great Grandpa Hoffman and collectible John Deere tractors and model cars from your Great Grandpa Schroll.  These gifts were all picked out and given with love, and though you don’t understand that just yet, you do at least enjoy exploring all the bright, new things that have taken over our house!
I took the day off work to spend with you on your birthday.  It was a sentimental day for me, and I wanted to enjoy every moment of it with you.  Highlights of our day include an early morning nap when you fell asleep on my chest; singing, dancing, and laughing to the “Skinny Marinky Dinky Dink” song; and playing peek a boo with Morgan!  That evening daddy and I enjoyed watching you dig into a very special birthday cake Great Nan made you, just like the one daddy had for his first birthday too.  
At your one-year check up today,  you weighed 18 lb 9 oz and measured 29 3/4 in.  You’ve gotten really tall since your last appointment three months ago, but your weight is holding steady.  The doctor advised a diet of foods dense in nutrients to try to help you gain more weight.  I know you’d enjoy fattening up with daily servings of ice cream, and we’ll continue to offer one of your favorite foods:  cheese!
When you were born, it was my goal to breastfeed you for a year.  We did it!  It’s one of my proudest accomplishments in life.  There were times I HATED pumping milk for you while I was at work, but I felt it was too important to give up.  Lately you have had your share of sickness (pneumonia, croup), but I hope the love and time and care that was put into making sure you had only mommy’s milk will help give you a jump start for a healthy life!  It’s amazing to me how my body was designed to provide for you, and I’m thankful breastfeeding has worked out for both of us.  I’ve enjoyed the closeness and the snuggles it brings with a little boy who is otherwise on the move constantly.
You started crawling Memorial Day weekend, and ever since then it’s been go, go, go.  You crawl to us and grab at our legs or reach up to be held–it is the greatest feeling to be so wanted and so loved by you!  If we’re lucky, you give us an open-mouth kiss when we scoop you up in an embrace.  About a month after crawling, you started pulling yourself up to stand.  At first this took a lot of trying and sometimes some assistance, but before long you were standing up and down, up and down with ease.  You look like such a little person standing tall and upright!  Then came cruising along furniture and walking while pushing your activity table or push walker.  When you get going, YOU GO.  I love the thud of your little feet.  You used to stand with two hands touching something to stay balanced, then you started relying on only one hand, and now you stand hands free.  You step between pieces of furniture if they are close enough together, and you are even taking one or two steps at a time without any support!  You seem so proud of your new discoveries and abilities, and we know it won’t be long now until you start walking full time!  
Along with this new mobility, you have learned how to stand and reach for things on our end tables, and you also now stand and reach for any snacks we may be enjoying while sitting on the sofa.  We’ve been sharing a lot of food lately and also our drinks since you are more fascinated with mommy and daddy’s cups than your own sippy cups.  It’s pretty entertaining because you and Morgan both stand in front of us waiting for food.  More and more at mealtime you prefer to feed yourself, and when you are done, you throw your leftovers on the floor for Morgan one piece at a time.  You enjoy watching him scramble to devour the food.   
You still love bathtime and have a new fascination with unraveling the toilet paper roll.  You love crawling through the house but pause often to make sure someone is coming after you.  You love these games of chase and laugh heartily when you hear us coming and try to make your getaway.  A lot of times I exaggerate my footsteps just to get a bigger reaction out of you.  You now climb stairs with ease, clap your hands, and stick your hand out like half pointing and half waving.  I always encourage you to say ‘Hi’ when you do this.  I usually get more of an “Eh,” and you have also been saying “Ba,” which might mean ball.  Nanie and Miss A said they heard you say “Uh oh,” but I haven’t noticed any true first words yet.
You love your toothbrush and smile when you see it.  (You now have seven sparkly teeth that we brush each night before bed!)  You like to turn the pages in your books and love touch and feel books.  You also like to stick your little fingers in lots of fun places where they shouldn’t go…like in the dog’s water dish, or the potted plant dirt, or the VCR.  I think you understand “No,” but you usually just smile and continue with whatever you were doing when I say it.  You have a very bad habit of biting me (most often on my shoulder), and I have bruises to prove just how ineffective that yucky “No” word has been at teaching you not to bite!
Your first year is over now, but there are still a lot of firsts for us to look forward to–like your first words and your first trip to the beach next month!  You don’t look like such a baby anymore, but that’s ok because I love the little boy you’re becoming.  You’re our world and our dream come true.  When we found out we were going to have a baby, your daddy looked for a shooting star to make a wish for you, our baby-to-be.  He didn’t find a star that night, but I realized days later he didn’t need to–you are our star.  You are everything I love and everything I live for.  Happy Birthday, Baby!    
Leave a comment »