I've stopped taking our monthly picture-in-the-chair-with-the-sign, thank goodness!!
Those pictures were a monthly pain-in-my-patootie! I love commemorating each and every month of Ellie's life thus far, but from about 5 months on, those pictures were just torture! I continued with them because I wanted them to be consistent for her first year, and I'm happy that we can be done with them now :) (I'll definitely put more thought into this set-up with my next child. We will do kind of the same thing, but I'll be careful about where the picture is taken, props, etc.)
So today Elliott is 13 months old. I know it sounds cliche, but she learns something new each and every day! I really want to list out everything she can say and do now, because our baby book is done and I don't yet have anywhere to document all of this. Every day when she says something new or does something that cracks me up, I start to panic a little wondering how I'm going to remember it all! (I know, I'm wierd like that. I freak out about really silly stuff sometimes.)
Elliott, at 13 months, can say mama, dada, buzz buzz, bye bye, hi, and hello. She copies almost everything I say, but these are just the words she uses on a regular basis. Today I'm pretty sure she said "thank you" after I said it to her, and she often tries to say "milk". Ellie also has a sense of humor now. She was such a serious baby for so long, and now hearing her laugh and seeing her do things intentionally to make us laugh is so fun and a nice change of pace!
She's always been fairly social, but she really seems to enjoy being around other people now. She absolutely loves kids. Whenever there are kids around (of any size, age, gender), she stands as close to them as possible and will just watch, as if she's waiting to be invited to play :) She gets very excited if they run by, and is just thrilled when they acknowledge her. She will also turn and say "hi" to anyone and everyone within earshsot if we're in a restaurant or a store. She still loves holding a phone up to her ear and saying 'hello".
Elliott is very gentle with animals, and she pets Rosco at least a few times each day (much to poor Rosco's dismay). She loves to read books with me, especially ones about animals!
Food has always been an obstacle for us, ever since day one. Ellie is now completely off of formula, and has been for over a month now. When we first weaned her off of it, however, she wasn't drinking enough milk. We've worked on finding the perfect sippy cup and the perfect blend of organic whole milk mixed with chocolate milk.....and we have a winner! Ellie now drinks at least three sippy cups full of milk each day! Our pediatrician would be so proud! We still have some tough days where I feel like she isn't eating much at all, but usually I can find something that appeases her, and she now weighs 19 pounds.
She still sleeps like a champ, even if her naps are a little shorter than I would like. She's been getting super fussy when tired, and I'm so not a fan of temper tantrums! Seriously, we've had some doozies. I feel like Scott and I are being initiated into some special "parent club" or something. I keep telling myself (and him) that this is a phase, and it will pass. We just need to stay calm, and be firm and consistent. Ha! Easier said than done at times.
Ellie is still very entertained simply by walking. When it's not raining, we'll go outside and she'll spend a good 30 minutes walking up and down the sidewalk. Sometimes we break out the Power Wheels Quad, and I get a workout chasing her and turning her around. Elliott got a big playhouse for her birthday that now takes up over half of our kitchen. She loves to open the door and step through it, play with the mailbox, and of course ring the doorbell! I love seeing her learn things.....just last night I asked "Ellie, what says ding-dong?" and she walked right up to the playhouse and rang the doorbell!
I love having this little girl in my life. Even with the tantrums, she brings so much joy and happiness to this house. I get sentimental a lot these days because I realize just how quickly babies grow up. I have a habit of watching all kinds of baby shows, and lately I cry whenever I watch one. It's not a sad cry, though. It's the kind of cry that says "I miss those days, but every day with this little one is even more amazing than the last." I've said it before, but bittersweet is the perfect word to describe parenthood.
I love you, Elliott Erin! Each day I thank God for giving you to me! I love watching you grow up, and I love being your mommy!