Our Noble Pursuits

Living the good life. And writing about it.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

21 Months!

As we find ourselves once again on that time on the calendar when Annie becomes another month older, I realize how amazed I sometimes still am that she is ours.  Now that she is getting older and reaching that crazy age of 2 and discipline and rule setting are concepts we are all becoming more familiar with, I just can’t believe we have been entrusted with her.  Not because we don’t know what we are doing – I don’t think any of us ever really know what we are doing in parenting, and I am certain I didn’t have a clue what I was doing when she was a newborn and we somehow managed to keep her alive and happy.  But because it is still, on this very day, 21 months post-birth day, surreal to me that I am a mother.  I am someone’s mom.  I am the person who is responsible, with her daddy, for helping her grow to become a fully functional, hopefully fully wonderful, member of society.  I know I should be used to that idea by now, and most of the time I am, but some days, some moments, it still gives me pause to realize that we are here, in this parenting spot.

As I mentioned, as Annie gets older, new challenges are starting to develop.  She has days sometimes where nothing pleases her.  Days when she cries because I don’t let her feed the cats only seconds after she has told me decisively that she doesn’t want to.  Days when she doesn’t want me to touch her one second and then won’t let me put her down the next.  Days when she is fully prepared for battle in this battle of wills we have entered.  Days when she tests my patience and I’m certain I test hers.
Morning tea requires great seriousness.
But on those days, we also have those moments when she lays her head on my shoulder, pats my back with her little dimpled hand, and says, “I sorry, Mommy.”  Moments when she giggles herself to the state of hiccups because her daddy is giving her tickle kisses on her neck or belly.  Moments when she takes my hand and laces her chubby fingers through mine just because she wants me close to her.  Moments when she puts her little, but deceptively strong, arms around my neck, squeezes me tight, and says, “I love you, Mommy.”  (She has actually said this...more than once this month.  I never knew something could actually make my heart swell until I heard that.) Oh, aren’t these moments when speech development brings tears to your eyes! 

Great love for "Puppy!"
And even greater love for Daddy.
In her 21st month, Annie has developed an affinity for 3-word sentences, jumping up and down (on all surfaces), singing the “ABC Song” (or at least the first 5 letters of it), and counting, well, to 2 – you can keep going higher than that, but she will continue to repeat “two-oo” right along with you.  She loves peanut butter (thank God we don’t have a nut allergy) and applesauce more than anything else, and could survive just fine on a steady diet of waffles if we let her.  She is getting funnier, more spirited, more stubborn, and sweeter every single day.  And those big eyes and that dimple-showing smile keep getting cuter too.   (If I do say so myself)

I will be back later in the weekend with an Easter post.  We have lots going on this weekend, which will mean many great photo opportunities, I'm sure.  Happy Easter everyone!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Our Week: A Recap

This post is going to be really picture-heavy, because it feels like we have had a lot going on lately and we have had a lot of photo-worthy moments this last week. The fact that it feels like we have had a lot going on also means I don't feel really excited about writing anything - and it is unlikely that anything I would write just now would be particular meaningful.  So, I give you a March week with the Nobles...in pictures!

We visited Gaga...
Eating bluebees (aka blueberries) out of an Elmo container while Gaga reads to me?  This is the life!
Okay, who came in when I wasn't looking and switched my little baby with this big girl?!
Annie had fun spending the night at my mom's Saturday night while David and I went out to celebrate our birthdays (which are within a week of each other).  This girl loves her some grandparents, let me tell you.

We had a tea party...

And went to a friend's birthday party...

Throwing balloons at Mommy.
Chatting up her good buddy, Audrey.
So jumping is a new, fun activity.  No matter how high the platform.
We harassed the dog a little...
Seriously, he is SUCH a good sport!
And got a little silly...

And then, to top off the week, Annie had a write-in-the-baby-book moment and got her first haircut!  She's been looking a little shaggy for a while now, with some baby hair still hanging out longer than her new hair.  Her hair sort of can't decide how curly it wants to be either, with sweet little curls popping up in the back from time to time.  So we figured a little trim might make her look a little less ragamuffin and a little more sweet little girl.  Did you like how I pulled out the word 'ragamuffin' there? 

My friend Sara, who also happens to cut my hair, was nice enough to work Annie in to her busy schedule and a first haircut ensued.  Annie handled it great.  You never know with her (or with any toddler, I suppose!) whether she's going to go with it or freak out, so her willingness to sit in my lap and just look around the shop all wide-eyed was quite a pleasant result.  I got strangely sad - and a little anxious - about the whole process.  And probably chickened out a little in how short I asked Sara to go with it (as in, I didn't really want her to cut much off at all).  But it was a fun experience, and I think all of us - including Annie! - are pleased with the result.

Mommy wore a cape too so Annie would feel comfortable.
She looks a little concerned - but she was really pretty comfortable with the whole thing.

Playing with hair clips makes everything more fun.
Voila!  Look at this little lady! 
So as you can see, it's been a busy week around the Noble homestead.  Here's hoping for a calm, relaxing weekend, and another great week to come.  Happy weekending!

Friday, March 1, 2013

20 Months!

I sort of got too big for my blogging britches with my last post, I guess.  Being so proud of myself for posting not once, but twice in one week!  And now it's been weeks since then and I haven't found the time to write anything.  Or haven't felt inspired to write anything worth sharing, really.  But now the time has come to document another month of our sweet girl's life...and that, my friends, is certainly worth writing about.

Annie has continued to grow and amaze us with how much her little mind retains and stretches.  It seems she learns a new word or phrase or game or song every day.  And she is quite a challenge to keep up with as she gets faster and stronger and even more energetic than she has been before.  Going out with Annie almost always involves laps around the restaurant or stints of her crawling under the highchair or fastening the buckle on the chair repeatedly.  She isn't content to sit for long and is always looking for something to get into or explore.

Her speech has continued to take off this month, with the additions of three syllable words like "animal" and "butterfly."  She speaks in two to three word sentences pretty much most of the time now.  And is a little bossy about it, giving me and David instructions or telling the dog what he can and can't do.  "No, puppy!"  is one of her favorites, as is "Mommy/Daddy, sit."  Fortunately, she realizes she isn't completely self-sufficient and uses the request, "Mommy help" quite often.  And who am I to deny that one?

Annie also continues her love affair with music, insisting that we have family dance parties regularly and requesting that we sing her favorite songs repeatedly.  I think if Annie were to make a request and dedication on the radio it would be for the Happy Birthday song.  We sing it at least three times each day, at her request ("Happy!" she instructs) - once at breakfast, once on the drive to school, and at least once in the evening.  She likes for us to sing the line "Happy birthday to..." over and over, with her telling us what family member, friend, or pet to dedicate the song to each time. It can go on and on, but she is so delighted with every new name, it's a lot of fun to watch.

In another attempt to prove to us just how fast she is growing, Annie has shown us that she is quite capable of dressing herself - or at least partially dressing herself.  She can put on her own dresses, hats, coats and for the most part, shoes.  And what she doesn't do all on her own, she helps us with - putting her foot out for her socks, lifting her leg up for pants or tights.  It won't be long before she's doing those things on her own too.  (sniff, sniff...sniff)
Happy happy girl.

So cool.  I mean, seriously?

In addition to her love for books and blocks and stuffed animals, Annie has added baby dolls to her list of favorite toys.  She spends long periods of time laying blankets on the floor and wrapping up her babies in the them.  She also wants her stuffed animals to sit at the dining room table while we eat.  "Bebra" (the zebra) and "Hop" (the bunny) have joined us for breakfast and dinner in recent days.  And "Emmie mouse" (Minnie to you and me) frequently finds herself perched on Annie's highchair tray at meal time.  The girl comes by this honestly, I must admit.  I used to sleep with about 20 stuffed animals at night because I didn't want any one of them to get its feelings hurt if I left it out.

Catching up on some reading at a local book store.
 Finally, the more she grows, the more we see Annie's personality take shape.  She is shy at first when she enters a new place or meets a new person or finds herself the recipient of a lot of attention - but give her a few minutes and the flirting begins.  And once she warms up, watch out!  She's all over the place...and eating up the attention.

Ever the little helper - feeding our cats.
 It seems daily I am reminded of how fortunate and blessed we are to have been chosen as Annie's parents.  I don't take it for granted.  And I try to remind myself of our blessings even on the days when she is pulling on my leg and whining for no reason or having one of those toddler moments when nothing suits her. Or when she suddenly throws herself in the floor in a display of diva drama.  Even in those moments, I know we couldn't have hand picked a better match for our family.  A more perfect piece of our family puzzle. She's our girl, and we love watching her grow.