A Week’s Worth of Memories

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A birthday party, a few days to recuperate, a special day to celebrate a special baby and a winter storm. This week has felt long in a good way.

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You’re One Year Old, Shepherd!

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Dear Shepherd,

You turned one year old at 3:10 this afternoon. What a year it’s been, Bunny. I haven’t written a formal post since your seven-month birthday, but I will fix that soon. Until then, let’s talk about the last month.

You turned 11 months and started walking tentative steps. Now you are all over. You don’t say much, but you can say mama, more “mo!” and sometimes dada. You point to what you want and what you’re interested in. For the last few weeks, we’ve tried to teach you to hold up your pointer finger when we say “one year old Shepherd,” and sure enough, you can do it. Like most things, when you will oblige is completely up to you. Sometimes you stonewall us so much! It makes me laugh, but it also frustrates me when you ignore me.

You had your first taste of cake at your birthday party last weekend, and tonight just mama, daddy and you celebrated with a key lime pie. You have loved both of these experiences. We have introduced goats milk, and you really, really don’t care for it. We also reached the year mark for nursing, something I wasn’t sure we’d reach, but am glad we did.

We’ve spent exactly half of your life in Nebraska. It’s pretty cool here, huh? I am really thankful we’ve had the opportunity for me to stay at home with you during these last six months. The harsh winter has kept us inside; our days are spent playing with blocks, pushing your cart from Aunt Jillian, taking out little people from the toy basket, playing your piano, and generally making messes. You received a band-in-a-box and a Rody for your birthday, and you have really liked playing with them. Some long-term favorites have been your Fisher-Price telephone, keys, and wipes and tissues (which you pull out of their containers).¬†You love music but are reluctant to dance. You must be like your mom in that aspect. I’ve caught you on video a couple of times, though, and it’s hilarious.

You have the sunniest disposition, but you are easily frustrated. When you get mad you scream LOUD! Your hair is finally growing out, and it is the lightest brown. I think it may turn lighter in the sun this summer. Your eyes are dark brown like mine. You are a tiny reflection of your daddy, though.

Funny things I’d like to remember:

  • When you go to bed each night, whoever isn’t carrying you up the stairs follows behind. You get the biggest eyes and think it’s hilarious that there is someone following you up the stairs.
  • You pet mine and daddy’s hair when you’re tired and we hold you. It’s so sweet.
  • You have started playing in your crib more. You will chat with your friends in your room for quite a while. If I leave your windows open during naps, you will stay in your room and watch the neighbors for a long, long time.
  • You eat cat food, swing doors open, like to crawl off beds and couches, want to be attended to immediately, and don’t like when we close the baby gate to the kitchen. You have to be where the action is.
  • Your Great Aunt Heidi taught you how to hold your head and say “uh oh!”. So cute!
  • You still don’t care for books (except to put in your mouth). This is such a tragedy for mama, but I am told you will grow into it, so we continue to read!
  • You hate having your diaper changed.
  • You talk on your play phone, and require us to talk on it, too.

Trips we took this month:

  • Trip to Osmond for Grandpa Great’s 80th birthday party.
  • Trip to Las Vegas for the Anderson Family reunion.
  • Trip to Hoover Dam and Lake Meade.
  • Your first birthday party.

You had a tough spell between 7-10ish months, but you are back to great sleeping habits. You sleep 12 hours and take two 1-2 hour naps in the day time. You’ve begun to show us you’re tired by laying your head down on a pillow or the ground. If we ask you to show us how you lay down or go night night, you will pretend to go to sleep. You’ve become somewhat attached to your blue blanket. You slip your fingers through the knitting and hold on to it as you sleep. I have also heard you “talking” in your sleep.

I’m eager to watch your development as you learn to say words. They seem to be on the tip of your tongue, and it’s very interesting to watch you silently form words and then mouth them. I wonder what you have to say, and I know that whatever it is, there is a lot of it. I am eager to see you continue to learn to show affection and learn names. I am just so proud of your curiosity and find it amazing how quickly you understand concepts and ideas.

Shepherd, I am so glad to be your mom. It’s been the most natural thing for me to learn how to be your mama. It seems that you and I have always been together. What a gift and a joy. I am so honored to have the privilege to raise you. I hope you always know how much we love you. You are our greatest love.

Love,
Mama and Daddy

At Twelve Months:
Height: 31 inches (80th percentile)
Weight: 1 ounce shy of 20 pounds (25th percentile)
You are wearing size 12 month, 12-18 month clothes. Your size 12 months pants are almost all too short, but the waists are finally fitting! I think I will have to pin the waists of your other pants. You have really long arms, and your coats are too short.
You are wearing size four diapers and size five shoes.
You have dark brown eyes. The outer half of your left eye is turning green.
Some nicknames we have for you this month:
Sheppy/Shep
Bunny Pie
Wee Wee (Oh, you’re going to kill me for that when you get older)
CC (Christopher Caspian)

My precious baby boy had a big day today, as did his mama and daddy. We had a small family party at home to celebrate Shepherd’s first year.

There’s so much I can say about how this little boy has changed my life, but the most important thing I’ve learned (and continue to learn) is the magnitude of a parent’s love: mine for Shepherd, my parents’ for me, and most importantly, the love of a merciful Father for all who believe. We are praising the Lord for his graciousness in giving us the task to raise our son, for the forgiveness we receive from him and each other, and for the joy only he can fill our home–and hearts–with.

How great is the love of the father that we should be called children of God!

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