Twelve Months

Parker Holt, you are ONE YEAR OLD! 

Here is a trip down memory lane at all of your monthly pictures.  I'm sure going to miss these...
I guess it's a good thing the monthly picture taking is coming to an end because the twelfth month did not go so well - ha! You were so interested in the sticker that I could hardly snap the picture before you had it off of your shirt and were playing with it.  We did get a couple of good ones though, plus a few outtakes. 
Then you decided to stand up in the chair - you've come a long way from the days of us propping you up in the corner of the chair.
In fact, here you a one month old laying in the corner and then a big, 12 month old boy standing! My how you have changed.
You had your one year check-up with Dr. Rester on Tuesday and you are 30 1/2" long and weigh 21 pounds and 4 ounces.  You have gained 14 pounds and 4 ounces and grown 10 1/4" since birth.  You are "long and lean" according to the doctor. Your head and length are about average or above average, but you are in the lower percentile on weight, but you are perfectly healthy...just lean!

You have moved up to wearing size 4 diaper during the day and still wear a size 4 nighttime diaper after your evening bath so it'll hold more through your sleep at night. You are wearing mostly 12 month clothing. A few 9-12 month items still fit you, but not too many - mostly pants.  We have put a couple of 18 month items on you, but they are a tad big.  Some things fit you well in length since you are so long, but they fall off your little waist. 

You are still on a breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack schedule and it is working well.  You are starting to eat when we eat our meals and that is helping a lot.  Bless your heart, you are just not the best eater - I think you have bigger and better things to do.  You don't much fancy being in your high chair and what food you do eat, you want to get it over with and get out.  We are still working on trying to give you more and more table food and let you sample some of what we eat...just experimenting with different things.  You still eat some "baby food" from time to time and have stuff like yogurt, applesauce, fruit pouches, etc for a snack.  When you have teeth coming in (like now) it really affects your eating, but even when you don't, eating is just not a high priority for you.  Your Daddy and I think that you would just go on all day without eating if we didn't make you stop and eat.  You would much rather play and explore around the house.  Luckily you are healthy and doing well, so we'll keep working on this.  We talked to the doctor about it and have a few things to try and work on.

We are also trying to work with you on transitioning from a bottle to a cup (sippy cup and/or straw cup). You are doing better and better at it, but kind of like eating, most the time you could care less about drinking.  Unless we stop and practically force you to take a drink, you never go for your bottle or cup on your own and start drinking as if you were thirsty.  You're a funny little fellow. 

You still go to bed between 8-8:30 and get up between 6-6:30am - you are an early riser.  We are morning people, so I guess that works out well.  The majority of the time you sleep so well at night, but occasionally wake up for one reason or another.  You still take a morning and afternoon nap - sometimes three naps depending on the day.

You have eight teeth and are starting to work on your molars - poor buddy! We haven't felt any teeth yet just little bumps, but you are definitely showing your normal signs of cutting teeth. 

You are THIS close to walking.  You are cruising along the furniture constantly and pull up on everything.  Some day soon, you are just going to take off walking.  You can stand up on your own and even work on getting your balance once you are standing.  You can take a few small steps before you fall down. You are so active, fun, energetic, funny and happy.

You can say a few simple words pretty clearly and other words not quite as clear, but enough for us to know what you are saying.  You also know what we are talking about when you when we ask you questions or tell you to point to something, so you are learning more and more each day. 

You LOVE LOVE LOVE  books.  We read you one every night and sometimes during the day.  But even if we aren't reading one, you love to just look through them on your own.  It's so sweet to watch you flipping through the pages.  I always wonder what's going through your little head. Your favorite thing right now is board books with flaps to lift.  You really enjoy those and look at them multiple times a day.  Mommy has started taking one to the store each week for you to look at too.
We have LOTS of pictures this month, so we'd better get started with the captions and commentary.

When Calvin goes outside, you like for us to raise the blinds on the door so you can watch him and wait for him to come back in.  We have your little keyboard by the backdoor that sometimes you'll play with while you wait or if you get tired of waiting.    
 Time for cheerios!
One day, Mommy was cleaning out some things in the closet and came across a bunch of hats and things and we had fun playing in them for a little while.  You wore my star headband that I got after I graduated from college and my Mickey Mouse ears from Disney World.  I can't wait to take you there some day!
 Morning playtime in your pajamas.
 Working on the straw cup.
This was on Mommy's birthday.  Daddy surprised us and took the day off so we had a great family day out and more fun back at home afterwards. 
Your absolute favorite toy right now is your ball popping dinosaur - we have named him Dexter.  You are obsessed with him! It's usually the first thing you go to in the morning and he is played with all throughout the day.  Even though it's made for "ball popping", you will put anything and everything in there and watch it pop around.  Mamaw and Gramps got it for you for Christmas and it is a HIT.  We have already replaced the batteries twice since Christmas. 
 Resting your sleepy head on my leg.
Mommy and Daddy celebrated 10 years of marriage on the 8th and Aunt Wanda (John's Dad's sister) came to watch Parker while we went out to dinner.  We took these pictures before we left for our dinner date.
 Another one of Parker's loves - Daddy's guitar.
 Fun with Daddy and Mommy. 
Since you were born after February 14th last year, you celebrated your first Valentine's Day this year.  We don't make a huge deal out of it, but we like to celebrate it with a little bit of fun.  On Wednesday and Thursday, you wore your Valentine clothes!  On Wednesdays, we go to women's Bible study at church so I dressed you in your cute tie shirt and jeans.  Your tie says "My 1st Valentine's Day". We went to lunch with the Bible study ladies after class because one of our women was moving and we were saying goodbye to her at lunch. You were adored by all and even passed around to be held.  On Thursday, Valentine's Day, we had a day of things going on at home so we just stayed here all day.  You wore a super cute candy heart shirt that your Great Uncle Ken and Great Aunt Mindy got for you.  Mommy and Daddy got you a card and new book.  You also received a couple of sweet cards from your grandparents.    
The weekend before your birthday, Grandma and Grandad paid you a visit.  They got in Friday before lunch and left Sunday late morning.  We had a really nice time while they were here.  You were played with, well entertained and loved.  They both took some turns feeding you and enjoyed playing with you and your toys in the floor.
Yes, that is a turkey baster - a favorite toy and teething comfort these days.  You are kicked back on the pillow Grandma made you for your birthday (which is on the little couch Granny and Grandpa got you for Christmas).
Story time with Mommy in the big chair - fun and special indeed.  I don't take these moments for granted. 
And now for THE event of the month, your FIRST birthday! After much thought (an analyzing, agonizing, weighing of reasons to and not to, etc by your Mommy) we decided not to have a big bash for your 1st birthday.  For various reasons, we made the decision to make the day all about you and focus on your first of many birthdays.  Plus you still don't quite know what's going on yet, so we'll save the parties for when you are older. It was a good decision and the day was simple, but wonderful. 

We still wanted to make the day super special and memorable for you and us.  And I will use any excuse to decorate and get festive.  I still wanted to do some birthday decorating and have a little baseball themed day for you.  I had already bought a few things for your party (and Mamaw did too) before we decided to not have a party so I used some of it, but will save some of it for another time.  Your bargain hunting Mommy had bought a few things on clearance after 4th of July last year so the red, white and blue items fit perfect with the baseball decor.  I had a lot of fun decorating and crafting for your big day.     


A birthday hug from Daddy - he was on his way to pick up a cake and your balloons.  When he came home, he also had flowers for Mommy.  You have one sweet Daddy!
Because you aren't eating the best these days, you ate one of your normal breakfasts these days, but I look forward to making you whatever you want each year for your birthday breakfast. I did make your Daddy and I yummy chocolate chip scones. We spent the morning eating breakfast, playing and getting ready for the rest of the day out and about.
Making a few trips around the living room with the V-Tech walker Mamaw and Gramps got you for your birthday.  You can really move with that thing. 
A few sweet family birthday pictures before we left home - I love our little family.
We started the day with lunch at Chili's - mmm!  We went there the day we found out we were pregnant with you - yes I still have the receipt in your treasure box.  We hadn't been there in a long time - it was mighty tasty. 
After lunch, we made a stop at Starbucks and then went to Babies R Us.  We had a birthday coupon and a little birthday money so we bought you a couple of things including an umbrella stroller, two outfits and another boon spoon.

From there we went to Bass Pro specifically to let you look at the fish and "stuffed animals" - hah.  You love animals, animal books, and listening to the sounds animals make so we knew it was the perfect place and you would love it...and you did!

From there it was back home for dinner, cake and presents!  You are very loved Parker and received several sweet cards and wonderful gifts from family and friends - we are grateful. 
Because you love animal sounds so much, Daddy and I got you a See & Say - hooray!
 A "Fresh Beat Band" DVD - let me just say you LOVE the Fresh Beat Band.  You watch an episode a day - or at least listen to a few of their songs.  They make you smile, "talk" and so very happy.  You held and looked at this DVD case for a long time after you opened it - even gave them a kiss.  It's a cute show and one you are tickled with daily. 
 Snack Time in your birthday bib.
Mommy made you your own baseball smash cake and unfortunately, it did not go over too well.  You were actually afraid of it.  We did get a couple of cute pictures and sang to you before terror set in.  You poor thing - once you put your hands in the frosting, you wanted as far away from that cake as possible.  I don't know if it was just something new or the messy thickness of the frosting, but that's okay! I know one day you'll love cake and gobble it up.
When we say "ONE" you hold up one finger - so smart.
Oh Parker, we had such a wonderful day on your birthday.  In the words of your friends from the Fresh Beat Band, "We had a great day.  It was a super way to spend some time together.  We had a great day.  The very best day.  And nothing could be better." (The Fresh Beat Band always closes each episode with a song called "Great Day" and that is one line from it)  Such fitting words for our special day with you.

We cannot believe you are 12 months old - ONE!  We have had an awesome year and we are ready for the months and years to come with more fun, more celebrations and more memories.  We love you very, very much Parker Holt!

Until we meet again...