Today I witnessed one of the sweetest things that my eyes have ever seen in my life.

Lee went out to mow the lawn and I being the responsible parent that I am .. fell asleep on the sofa once I’d convinced Noah that the lawn mower wasn’t going to randomly attack him.

I woke up at one point when Lee had the Weed Whacker out (though they call it a strimmer here) and Noah decided to run into the house and come sit in the relative safety of the living room where we could spy on what was going on outside but being far enough away avoid any horror movie re-enactments.

Once again I told him it was okay and he slowly made his way to the door and then out to the deck where he yelled at Lee to get his attention. I drifted asleep for a couple of minutes and woke up to see Noah sat on Lee’s lap with his arms wrapped around his daddy’s neck and his head on the shoulder.

I watched this for a long time and struggled to get off of the sofa without being noticed. I just HAD to capture this moment on camera. Slowly, I got the camera out, made it across the floor to the door and zoomed in without being noticed. Unfortunately, the loving cuddles had just ended and Noah appeared to want to tell Lee something. That, I captured:

Daddy, I have something to tell you..

Daddy, I have something to tell you..

And I also captured what he wanted to share with his daddy:

How do you like THEM apples?

How do you like THEM apples?

That’s my son. All about sharing the love. How proud am I to have raised such a loving … flashing… soul?

…will not be presented to me. At least not by the upstanding members of my neighbourhood who got to see a whole new side to Noah today.

I was in the kitchen making dinner and had left Noah sitting on the sofa watching CBeebies (like Treehouse for the North Americans). He was tired, so he was chilling out against a pillow and had his soother in. Occasionally he would strain and peek out of the window and then look back at the tv.

Now he wasn’t making much noise at all, but when things went spookily silent I decided that I should investigate what he was up to.

When I arrived in the living room I saw that a bag had been knocked over and a pillow was pinning the curtain to the sofa. From this photo you can see where he actually is, but in person you couldn’t. It looked like he was sitting on the cushion looking out of the window.

Hide...

So I snuck around the corner to get a shot and suffice it to say, I was the one who was left in shock as I saw my half dressed 14.5 month old dancing in the front window for everyone to see.

Peek a Boo

Just how many people passed by that window and wondered to themselves .oO(where is that child’s mother?) Obviously Noah just took the saying “dance like no one is watching” literally.

And to think people worried when we made the Bucket Babysitterâ„¢.

The fear in a child’s eyes when they are lost is heartbreaking to see. The panic on the face of a parent who cannot find their child is one which can be felt by a stranger walking by.

I’ve always heard that you will lose your child, whether for 1 minute or more and that it will be the scariest thing that I can go through.

Well, today I lost Noah. It wasn’t even for a minute, but the panic set in. Where did he go?! He was just there!! My heart was in my throat.

Only we weren’t in public.

In fact, we were in our house. In the bathroom. Specifically, in the shower.

That’s right, I lost my son in the shower. One minute he was standing there brushing his teeth and singing and then all of a sudden there was quiet and I couldn’t see him. I looked down and ..no Noah. I looked behind me (the best that I could) and .. no Noah. Then all of a sudden he pops out of nowhere, singing and brushing his teeth like nothing had happened.

Popped out of where you might ask? He was hidden under my bump. It turned from one of the most frightening moments of my life into one of the most depressing.

Two Thumbs Up for another great month!

20.4.09: On the ball

20.4.09: On the ball

Just thinking about this month makes me want to scoop you out of bed, hug you so tight and do whatever I can to make you stop growing up. You are amazing as you are right now. Perhaps a little more progress with your verbal communication would be welcome, rather than the constant hand flapping that we are getting. Mind you, if you ever decide to become a professional horse racing bookie, you’ve got Tic Tac covered!

You are at the stage where you can let us know what you want and if needs must, you will come over to one of us and drag us to something to show us what you want. It is very handy for you and can be quite tiring for us. Especially for your Daddy as he seems to give in to this game of Do What I Say/Want easily, where I am a little harder to persuade as it takes me a lot longer to get up from wherever I am due to this ever increasing size of my belly.

8.4.09: Family Al Fresco

8.4.09: Family Al Fresco

I am convinced that your advancements this month have been due to the extended periods we have spent outside, along with your increasing desire to grow up, graduate school and move out so you can eat all of your Easter eggs in their foil wrapping before coming out of your room … or so that you can have a bathroom all to yourself where people won’t take pictures of your constant love to preen yourself.

Pretty, Im so pretty...

Pretty, I'm so pretty...

Speaking of prettying up yourself… you have developed this new, not so pretty, smile that you think is absolutely hilarious and which is nearly impossible to catch on camera because you close your eyes so tightly and smile at a random object (see photo above). This smile goes along with the dozens of new faces you pull, most consisting of pushing your tongue against your four bottom teeth as hard as you can without it popping out of your mouth. Your facial expressions never fail to amuse us, even when we’re trying to be serious with you. And your Clever Level has been reaching near Maximum Capacity! There are moments when we are being serious and you don’t want to hear it and we can actually see you go from starting to have a tantrum to realising the easier way to end this talking to would be to give out cuddles and kisses.

24.4.09: Cuddles for Mommy

24.4.09: Cuddles for Mommy

So smart. So very very smart. That must be your Daddy’s genes kicking in. So far you appear to be getting his brain and his bathroom habits. Though I am not sure that the latter isn’t because you’ve become his shadow when he’s at home and so you’re just learning what the “men” of the family do. I guess that it is something I will have to look over and accept because seeing the two of you together is too sweet. Hearing the two of you laughing it up in the shower or watching you every morning as you realise that he is getting dressed to leave and demanding that he pick you up right then and there for cuddles is starting to erase all of the months of wondering whether I’d ever start to enjoy motherhood. Seeing how you look at him and look at me too makes me realise that perhaps I am not totally crap at this and that there have to be parts that I am doing right. Then again, you don’t really know better right now, which is another reason to keep you just as you are!

Daddy and Noah
Daddy and Son Looking Over the Photos

This month has seen the milestone of your moving into your own bed. Not a crib or even a toddler bed, but your own double bed. It has only been a few nights plus your daily naps, but you are doing amazingly. We are so proud of you. Your independence has shone through this month. It is as though you not only learned to physically open doors for yourself (which has shocked and scared us!), but you are doing it metaphorically too. You’ve realised that you can do things without one of us being right by your side and you can still have fun.

A lot of this has been due to the weather getting a bit nicer and being able to be outside more. You definitely love it out there. Some mornings you have gone out on the deck after breakfast and stayed there until you could no longer hold out on a nap any longer. You don’t even need toys out there because you seem to find ways to entertain yourself without .. even if sometimes this means trying to catch bees with your bare hands.

21.4.09: Rider in the Sun

21.4.09: Rider in the Sun

The only downside to this month that I can come up with, is that it is over. That means the time I get to spend alone with you is winding down and I’m starting to worry that I am going to miss all of these magical moments that I catch now because I am going to be back in a panic wondering what it is your baby brother or sister is telling me that they need. And I fear that you are going to think that we love you less because you will be sharing us. We do not want you to ever think that. We are amazed every day that our love for you continues to grow, that we find you even cuter than you were yesterday and funnier than anyone we’ve ever known.

26.4.09 - Peek a Boo ..Floor style

26.4.09 - Peek a Boo ..Floor style

So, although month 15 is going to seem hectic as we try and get ready for the new arrival and we may even have a new family member before the month is up, I am going to do whatever it is that I can to make sure that we have another great month! Thank you for being so patient with me this far, it has taken me a while to get into the groove of this Mommy thing and I couldn’t have asked for a better baby boy to take this journey with. So bring on the sunshine and cuddles and faces …and okay, you can even stick your tongue out at me every once in a while.

27.4.09: Searching for Sunshine

27.4.09: Searching for Sunshine

Happy Fourteen Months, GrumpyPumps!!!
Mommy Loves You!!

Noah is having a nap, and I was just staring at him wondering if I have Parental Blinders on or if indeed he is one of the most beautiful children in the world.

I quickly ran for a Cheese induced pee and further contemplated this, only to return, sit down and look over at him and he was lying there on his back ever so peaceful .. and then he popped one eye open at looked at me, all whilst remaining asleep.

It was not a beautiful moment. In fact, it made me think of my momma’s creepy doll from her childhood.

I guess if I can see the not so prettiness in him at times, I’m not wearing blinders. He’s just one of the most beautiful children in the world – most of the time.

When I was still employed by the wonderful National Probation Service and was pregnant with Noah, the paternity of my unborn BoB was often questioned. Many people tried to claim the baby as theirs, and even my beloved husband got in on guessing the father.

Well, it has taken 13 months, 1 week and 5 days to solve the riddle .. but we now know that the father of this little boy…
The Hair!!

Can only be this guy…
Heat Miser

The wildness of the hair can’t hide the truth any longer. It’s either the Heat Miser or Russell Brand. And well, at least the Heat Miser most likely bathes.

This has been the BUSIEST month of your life. It has been the: Month of Hair, Month of Phones, Month of Teeth, Month of Coughs, Month of Clapping, Month of Tongue, Month of Family and the Month Where You Appear to Have Left Babyhood Behind.

Who you calling baby?

Yes, we started this month sick. Nothing says Bring on the New Month like a raging temperature, a runny nose and smoker’s cough. At the end of it, the only thing you’ve been left with is the smoker’s cough. Perhaps when your Daddy and I fall asleep at night you sneak out on the deck and have a couple of Bensons. Though with as funny as you’ve been finding everything lately, I fear it may be something even stronger!

huh?

You haven’t only developed more of a sense of humour this month, but we’re now up to 8.5 teeth. Yes, a half. That weirdo molar that busted through the side is playing Silly Buggers and driving me crazier than you! Not that you’re crazy, just that you’re less bothered. And although you still have the tiniest teeth in the universe, your jaw appears to be changing because you seem to show off your pearly whites more often. Mind you, that could be due to your new Totally Wide Mouth Grin. It is similar to the Frog look of early teething days.. only even wider… and with teeth. And no matter how often you do it, it cracks me up. I hope this is only a phase, because I don’t want to give you a complex or anything when you’re 4, 12, 25 or 39 and I laugh at you when you smile.

Frog Cheese

Along with your teeth, your hair has been growing. Not all that much longer… but outwards. If any doubt was had before that you may have escaped The Curl, all doubt has been removed. Your hair is out of control. I cannot tell you how tempted I’ve been to put curling gel or anti frizz products in it. When I see your hair poking out in all directions and flicking up into wings over your ears, it brings photos of my youth before my eyes and I am sent spiralling into a panic over whether you too will be scarred by the various hairstyles your parents (that’s me and Daddy to you) thought looked good on you.

The Hair Out There

At least when we go out in public I attempt to dress you in okay clothes to make up for the hair. It is the least I can do since I am the one that you got those genes from. Actually, until the curls are fully developed, I am not sure that I want to take the blame just yet. I will however, take the blame for the Crocs. Though I will remind you when you’re older that you actually liked them. When Kadie and I put them on your feet in Bonnie Togs, you were off like the wind. It was as though your feet felt that they were walking on clouds. At least I think that is what your expression was trying to convey. It could have been “I bet you’ll wonder where I am when I take off into the change room”.

Shoe Horn

There was a point where I thought you actually liked shopping, but now I realise that you just like the opportunity to take off, play with hangers and climb through the clothes racks, all whilst finding yourself to be hilarious. I’ll let you in on a secret.. I may tell you to come back and to stop it.. but I find it hilarious too!

Personal Shopper

Month 13 also saw you conquer your fear or rather strong dislike for tunnels. From the first time you crawled in (when I think you were showing off for your Daddy), you’ve become a tunnel maniac! Even when we were at Z and Kadie’s house you were crawling under the coffee tables as though they were tunnels. I cannot tell you how proud I was when you first got in that tunnel .. even though you chose to exit through the hole where I wasn’t waiting for you! Though I wasn’t as proud when you kept trying to sit up under the coffee tables as though they’d magically get taller to suit your wants and desires.

Tunnel Of Love

Tunnel Vision

Actually, come to think of it, you’ve done so much this month that I am proud of. Although you have been Mr. Cling through a lot of it, you are becoming much more independent and mostly well behaved in public! When we went for a 2 hour + lunch with your Nan and Grandad, you were amazing. So amazing that we didn’t even realise how long we’d been in the restaurant.

3 Generations

When you and I were due to fly alone to Canada, I was SO scared of how I would cope with you on the plane .. but once again.. you were amazing! Nearly 8 solid hours of sitting on my lap and you hardly ever complained. You even let me change you in the cramped airplane washroom without too much wriggling around!! The way home was even better. You had your own seat and slept so much that I got to watch TWO movies. You don’t even let me watch ONE when we’re at home. You didn’t cry or moan going through immigration or waiting for the bags and you even helped me out massively in Toronto by walking out of Customs all by yourself.

Sleeping Beauty

While we were in Toronto you were amazing. You took just over a day to get adjusted to the timezone, the people, the fact that it wasn’t your house with your bed and your toilet handle. But once you got settled, you were right at home and soon let people know that there was a new boss in town .. unless they were feeding you.. then they could think that they were the boss. And oh my goodness, the food you ate – Dim Sum, Sushi, Deli, Diner, Tex Mex, Thai, Indian and West Indian .. and Kraft Dinner. You were GREAT! Even better than eating octopus, was the fact that you slept so well at night. You slept through. From the moment you’d fall asleep until I’d come to bed, you’d barely move a muscle .. even though you were in a bed with no head or foot or one side. Unfortunately you left that sleeping talent in Toronto, but I am still proud!

Aww.. too cute

In all, this has been my favourite month of your life, but the one that makes me saddest. You are clearly shedding your Baby Skin and becoming a full time toddler. I know that this is what happens and that I’ve been wishing this day since I realised that newborn babyhood kind of sucks, and I really am happy with the little dude you are at the moment, but you are changing SO quickly now and I’m suffering from pregnancy brain and am scared to forget all of this time.

So thank you for this month. You’ve made Month 13 excellent and I feel honoured to have been with you for almost every single moment of it.

The only thing we need to try and get rid of for next month is .. the tongue.

The Tongue

Happy Thirteen Months, GrumpyPumps!!!
Mommy Loves You!!

we do not do much Diaper Free Time at our house.


When you’ve got to go… from Kirsty B on Vimeo.

Before it was the fear of this happening. Now, it is the combination of the fear and the weakened bladder associated with my heavily pregnant state.

Genetics are a weird thing. Since Noah’s dramatic arrival, everyone keeps weighing in on the Who Does He Look Like Debate. He’s definitely got a strong dose of Astaphan genes, though oddly enough, he looks quite like Lee did as a child. But with crazier hair. Something he definitely “inherited” from Lee is this pin prick sized hole in his upper ear.

But not all of Noah’s genetic gifts have been found in his physical appearance. We have noticed more and more that he has a lot of my daddy’s physical traits. The way he used to lie down to watch television, the way he holds his mouth … and then this morning the ULTIMATE proof that my daddy lives on in Noah left us in hysterics.

One moment he is innocently looking through the World’s Worst Baby Name Book:
Picking Out Baby Names

The next, the smile breaks out, the leg gets cocked and Lee’s chest rattles as Noah releases his Valentine’s Day present:

Fuss Pants

Now you might think “he’s a boy” or “Lee must do that”. But seriously, Lee is not a leg cocker. Sure he finds gaseous emissions entertaining, but Noah’s skills are genetic. And I love the fact that Noah and my daddy will never meet, but that they are bonded closer than I could have ever hoped. Let’s hope some of the smarts also pass down (though he’s got Lee’s genes there to step in if Noah wastes all of my daddy’s on physical manifestations).

I only wish I had caught the after moment: Lee’s expression, the proud look on Noah’s face, the tears running down my cheeks…

After a successful Christmas and overall very good month 10, month 11 blazed in like a raging inferno and went out a similar way. Luckily, the middle bit was the best so far!

You started your 11th month with a fever. A fever that ended up being tonsillitis which could not have been worse timed because we were heading to St.Kitts for your first trip to the beach. We were worried that you would not be able to fly, but a nice little doctor gave you some medicine and your love of Nurofen helped get you through this very rough patch.

To say we were nervous about flying with an active and whiney baby boy would be an understatement. Especially since the first leg was all the way to New York. But you were a star. You loved the plane, the plane food, the cab ride from JFK to the hotel, the hotel and didn’t really start complaining until you were forced to go sightseeing and you couldn’t work out why it was so light outside when it was so late in your head. Totally understandable.

Chilling in the hotel

70 stories up

The next morning you were woken up super early and you had a bath, fell off of the bed, had a muffin and were bundled back into a cab toward the airport for yet another flight. The day was LONG due to delay after delay, but you explored the departure lounge and could not have behaved any better on the plane. Everyone loved you. And rightly so! You are a flying Super Star!

You were much happier in St.Kitts than in New York, though you kept this to yourself for a while. There were a lot of family members around and you were being cautious in getting close or trusting them, and you don’t even realise the family you were born into. You are so much smarter than you realise….

But you instantly fell in love with Crazy Uncle Jamie and started a serious flirt-a-thon with Auntie Stacy!

Early Morning with Auntie Stacy

Noah and his new best friend

And you also started a love affair with the beach. It was not love at first sight. Like, yes. Love, not so much. There was a little anxiety present as you tried to figure out how to walk on this weird floor that seemed to sink beneath you. And that water that looks like a pool, but then sneaks up and wets your legs… what was that all about?! But you didn’t complain, just went quiet and decided to give it a go.

First Touch of the Ocean

After a while you loved it. Especially eating it. But each time you went in you got a little more comfortable..

a 2nd try

.. until we took your pants off and you realised that there was no better place on earth than being in the ocean! Sting rays and all!

Beach Bum

While you were there, you got reacquainted with your cousin Calleigh. At first you were unsure of her. Here was this little girl who was shorter than you (bonus), but who didn’t care if she had to knock you over, pull your clothes or even grip onto your hair to get what she needed (not so bonus). After a while you realised that you too could knock her down if you needed to get by and that even though she was louder than you, she was pretty cool. In fact, you quite liked chasing her. Even if she didn’t know that she was part of a game.

Cousins

While you were in St.Kitts you also got to meet cousins and great-aunts you’d never met, and got to re-meet your great grandmother. This time around it was much more pleasant for all involved. She was healthier and in better spirits, which meant you were also in better spirits. And not just because there seemed to be food whenever you saw her. In fact, you went into her house and it was like you felt right at home. Seeing you so happy and comfortable there was one of the best feelings I’ve ever had.

dancing in the shop

The feeling was almost as great as the feeling I got when we went to the cemetery to visit my Daddy. You were so peaceful, so smiley, so giggley, so perfect. Going there was so hard for me, but you made it one of the happiest experiences and I am so grateful for that. In fact, I could not have hoped for you to love St.Kitts more than you did: the people, the country, the food! Once you recovered from the jet lag, you were one smiley boy!

Happy Noah

Sink Bath

Unfortunately, we had to leave St.Kitts. Once again, you were amazing on the plane .. allowing Daddy to change your diaper on the seat tray and all.. and you were great when we got to New York too. We let you sleep in the next morning before sticking you back on another plane, but this time you had your own seat and the flight attendants gave you lots of yogurt drinks and Daddy played a lot with you. You loved it again.

And then we were home.

Back to reality

And not long after, the raging fevers returned. You went off of your food, you stopped drinking your bottles and you had to endure a urine sample. It was rough. For you, for me, for Daddy.

Sick Boy

It is so hard to watch you feeling so poorly and not really being able to take the pain away. I have hated every moment of you being sick and cannot believe that you were sick twice in one month. Let’s hope that we have a bit of a break from The Sickness now. We want mid-month Happy Noah to return!

Because this guy:
Happy Happy

is so much easier to parent, than this guy:

Sick Sick

Next month you turn a whole year old. Let’s end the first year with a happy baby. A happy, walking, babbling, hugging, eating, drinking, not too messy diaper having, baby.

And then we’ll tackle that sleeping in your own bed thing.

Happy Eleven Months, GrumpyPumps.
Mommy Loves You!