He Turned One

September 28th, 2012 Annelise Posted in birthdays, Emmett M, family, growing up, I'm a Mormon, month markers, mooshy gooshy, party time, remembering when 1 Comment »

Ugh.  Stupid blog.  Nevermind that I am months behind, but I totally already did this entire post.  I spend a lot of time thinking about what I'm going to say and how I'm going to say it.  I spent several days using all of my "free" time doing this post and then somehow I deleted the entire thing.  I went to open my draft and it was  completely blank.  I might have cried.  Argh.  So here we go again.

I found out in December of 2010 that I was pregnant.  I wouldn't exactly say it was a surprise, because, well, we knew what we were doing.  But I did kind of feel like a stupid 16 year old trying to explain to her parents that she got knocked up, "But it was only one time!!" ūüėõ  So when I found out, I didn't actually tell anyone.  After a week, I figured it was time to let Erik in on the news.  I wrapped the pregnancy test in a box and paper then told Erik he could choose to open his Christmas present now, or on Christmas in 2 weeks.  He chose now.  I still didn't really know how I felt about the whole thing.  It was really weird.  I was probably in a bit of denial.  Until I started puking my guts out on Christmas Eve.  But even at my first appointment in January, I wasn't ready to accept the truth of it, and in a horrible horrible sense, almost wondered (not quite wished) that maybe I had been wrong about this the whole time.  When the doctor couldn't find the heart beat, I got nervous, though.  And then we saw our teeny tiny little bean on the ultrasound and our doctor told us, "We've confirmed life."  That's when the panic set in.  Big time.  I really struggled to come to terms with all the implications and what it would mean for me and for our family.  I was genuinely terrified and so sick with guilt that I wasn't excited about it.  It was silly for me to wait so long, but it was real now, and I knew I needed to take this to the Lord.  I prayed for peace and comfort, for love and strength, and for guidance.  And in those moments, I was filled with an overwhelming sense of all of those feelings I so desperately needed.  Then I had a very strong sense that this little baby was coming to our family, not just because he needed us, but because we needed him.  I felt so strongly that there was something very special about this baby that only he could bring to us.  I was so grateful in that moment for the Spirit, for the love of my Savior and my Heavenly Father.  And for the little boy that I was going to get to bring into the world.

August 9, 2011     

August 9, 2012

And now, here we are one year later!!  In the last 3 months, we've seen Emmett continue growing and learning at a very rapid rate.  It's so fun when they just take off like that!  He started shaking his head whenever he heard someone say no, waving hi and bye, loving the stairs and the bathroom and the living room lamop. grinding his teeth, and reaching up for me.  He bopped up and down to the music, pointed with his chubby hands, handed things to me, put phones to his ears and hats on his head, said Ba-ba and Na-na for bye bye and night night, face planted into his fuzzy green blankets, pushed cars around with a voooom noise, and add an Uh-uh to when he shook his head no.  Emmett folds his hands for prayers (he taught himself this), gives kisses, claps (Owen taught him this), puts diapers and papers in the garbage, throws close down the basement stairs, makes the funniest squinty eyed blinky faces that keep us in stitches and egging him on for more, WALKS, points to his eyes, your eyes, and up your nose, loves his belly button, and brings me my shoes then bangs on the back door when he wants to go outside.   

So for Emmett's birthday, we wanted to celebrate big.  Ha, NOT!  Poor poor third child!  But the appeal of a big party for someone who didn't care was long gone.  I did have two other boys who get very excited about brithdays.  So between that, and feeling like I should probably have something in pictures to prove we love him just as much as the other two, I put together a very simple Very Hungry Caterpillar party for five.  "But he was still hungry!"  Seemed about right for our Chubba.  On Em's actual birthday, we got him some balloons and let him try peanut butter.  Sam helped me decorate and wrap presents during nap time.  Then I attempted some pictures in the backyard.  Fail.  The sucker helped Emmett not cry and crawl after me, but it also helped him get insanely sticky and covered in grass.  By the time Erik got home and we did the normal routine, Em was ready for bed, and I felt no remorse putting him down without presents or cupcakes.  Again, poor poor third child!  The older boys weren't too happy about it, though, and when we didn't do it the next, day either, they were going bonkers!  But by that point, it just seemed to make the most sense to do it on Saturday.

So Saturday August 11, we put up the rest of the decorations.  Thanks to hi-float our balloons were still perky.  While the boys played in the backyard and Erik barbecued, the Very Hungry Caterpillar came by for dinner.  He ate through his apple, pears, plums, strawberries, and oranges, but he was still hungry!!  So he also ate through some swiss cheese, pickles, and watermelon.  I'm glad Erik was able to keep him out of the sausages!  We ran over to Samuel's soccer practice were I tried again to get some pictures of Lemmers.  He had other ideas.  We came back home for (fiiiiinallyyyyy) cupcakes, and the camera died before we got to presents, but there were a few of those, too.

The last year has been harder than heck.  But I sure wouldn't change it, and we're definitely not sending the Rooney Rooster back!  Emmett is challenging and a lot of work, but I think a bit of that is unfairly labeled because of all the other challenges and work going on around him that I also have to tend to.  He is so so sooooo so cute and adorable and squishy and smooshy.  I cannot squeeze him and kiss him enough.  He makes us smile, and he loves to make us laugh.  And our family really and truly is blessed to have this big bright ray of sunshine in our lives!

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Tubby Chub Chubs

May 25th, 2012 Annelise Posted in Emmett M, milestones, month markers 2 Comments »

May 9, 2012

We've made it three-quarters of a year.  Longest nine months of my life.  Hardest nine months of my life.  But nine months of my life that I wouldn't change for anything.  That's kind of how it goes, eh? ūüėČ  So the last Emmett update at six months was a bit negative.  I did write it at 1:00 am after 3 solid hours of him screaming, while Erik took his turn for another hour.  Although Emmett still seems to be a high maintenance and demanding baby, he's come miles since then.  In fact, we had a solid 3 weeks there where we almost thought we had a normal baby.  We were dumb enough to make mention of it, that it'd been a really good 3 weeks or so, and maybe things were finally looking up.  Knock. On. Wood.  We're idiots.  Add in two nasty head colds, one round of double ear infections, and lots and lots and looooots of snot.  Poor little guy.  

But, in the last month, our "neurologically delayed" baby has finally taken off!  It's been loads of fun to watch him get on his hands and knees, rock back and forth, and put himself into a sit.  It's also extra fun because besides Erik and me, Sam and Owen are just as excited to watch Emmett do something new.  We all cheer and clap for him together, and Em is clearly pleased with himself.  More recently, Emmett has started crawling.  We have also seen him do some fancy acrobats, like stick his bum up in the air while on all fours, kneel while holding onto something, and even put one leg out and try to push up.  It seems standing himself up is not so far away after all.  

So Emmett had his 9 month check-up on the 15th.  This kid is a chunky champ.  20.5 pounds (I thought 21 for sure!) puts him at 57% for weight, and his height, which I can't remember, is 80%.  Imagine that.  And boy oh boy do we love every single ounce of chub on this ridiculously adorable baby.  Not gonna lie, he might be my cutest one yet! ūüėõ

A few more things about this sweet little boy at 9 months old:

  • Still so inconsistent and unpredictable!  He really has no set schedule, other than once he wakes up during the day, I know he'll go down about 2.5-3 hours later.  And same for eating.  Nights can be anywhere from a 4 hour stretch to a 10 hour stretch.  He's done it all.
  • Now exclusively bottle fed.  Which was going great (during those awesome 3 weeks…) and now we're back to me panicking about days with dry diapers.  I'm still cutting him some slack while he's not feeling well.
  • Awesome with solids and starting to get good with finger foods.  He loves the Gerber Little Crunchies snacks, and has also tried cheese, freeze-dried apples and bananas, tortellini, tomato sauce, meatballs, and a myriad of other bites from our plates.  He's just recently learned how fun it is to blow raspberries with a mouth full of food.  
  • Back in April he started say Mama.  He also does dada, baba, and dih dih dih, and a few other darling noises.
  • Before he started crawling, Em figured out how to reach things doing what I called a slug lunge.  It was different from anything either Sam or Owen did, and it's hard to describe.  He'd kind of put his face down, roll onto one side and reach up with his arm, and then shove him self up and out with the opposite leg.
  • Before he was sitting well, he loved to roll over in the tub.  It always made me think of those fat hotdogs at 7-11 that just sit and spin in place.  It was pretty funny.
  • Now he sit in the bath, and he likes to stick his face into the water.
  • When he gets his hands on the boys cars and trucks, he turns them upside down and spins the wheels.
  • He lies on his back and picks up things with his toes.
  • When he first started getting himself around, his favorite place to go was the boys' book boxes.  He loved to pull them off the bottom shelf.  Now he has figured out the three bottom drawers of the entertainment center full of toys.  He sits himself up there, then usually smacks himself in the face while trying to open it, plays around in the drawer, then pinches his fingers when he shuts it.  But that hasn't stopped him yet from making that one of his favorite places to go.
  • He likes to cuddle his head on my chest when he's being a bit shy, but he's also done it when Erik's holding him, and even one of our friends.  It's really sweet.
  • He does not like the exersaucer one bit anymore, he does still really enjoy the jumperoo.  He goes up and down and back and forth and side to side in that thing.
  • And he will jump when he's not in the jumperoo.  He still loves to pump his arms and bicycle kick, too.
  • He likes to repeat our noises and sounds.  (It's a pretty normal thing for babies to do, but I don't remember the other two ever doing it really.)  It's a cute little game when we go back and forth.  Never gets old.

Emmett really truly has been a blessing to our family these last 9 months.  We have all learned and grown so much.  Especially as he's really taken of developmentally this last month, I love that it's still just as thrilling with the third child as it was with the first and second.  And now he has two older brothers to love and adore him, too, not just his mom and dad.  We are all such fans of the cutest little smooshy we know!!

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Fatty Chubbikins

February 22nd, 2012 Annelise Posted in doctor, Emmett M, milestones, month markers 2 Comments »

February 14, 2012

This has been a heck of a half year.  Doesn't everyone in the world say you just gotta make it to six months?  Or something stupid like that?  I am going to do my best not to sound selfish and ungrateful, but it's been dang hard.  Emmett is soft and smooshy and cute and cuddly.  But he is cranky, difficult, fussy, and unhappy.  Doesn't eat, definitely doesn't sleep.  Screams a lot.  And now in the last month he's gone on a total milk strike.  Particularly the last 3 days.  Hasn't had more than maybe 3 ounces.  Won't breastfeed, sure won't take a bottle.  Nothing about him is consistent or predictable.  Anyway, I'm a wimp and a whiner.  But that's my excuse for being lousy about monthly updates.  I promised myself I would do one for 6 months.  Half a year.  It's kind of big deal.

At his check up, Emmett weighed in at 17 pounds 10 ounces.  I was sure he would be at least 18 pounds.  He had dropped a solid 15% in weight, so I'm chalking that up to the milk strike.  But that's still significantly more than either of his older brothers.  Em is also what the doctor called "neurologically delayed."  Sounds scary, right?  Or maybe only to a crazy anxious mom, I don't know, but all it means is that he's developing his neurological pathways a bit slower than average.  He just barely learned to roll over last week.  He doesn't push himself up when on his tummy, and he isn't really even close to sitting on his own.  But the doctor promised me there were no implications whatsoever, other than Emmett hits his milestones a bit later than most babies.  As for his social, mental, and emotional "skills," Emmett is right on track and doing fine. 

So, six months in, here are a few other highlights, favorites, and things we want to remember about our tricky Emmett M.

  • I flippin love the little crease under his nose.  It's probably not something anyone else would notice, but I do.  And I love it.
  • I also love his 17 dimples.  Seriously, at least that many on his fat face when he smiles.
  • He has a cute little voice quiver that he does when he's talking or playing. 
  • He is so so responsive to his big brothers.  Nothing warms this mama's heart more than to see them interacting with each other.
  • Another thing Em does that I find simply irresistable is when I'm holding him on my hip or lap or whatever (which I am a lot) and he turns to look up at me.  It's like he's just checking in. 
  • He still does this kind of weird, involutary hand pump.  It's almost like a repetitive twitch.  He does it particularly when he's eating or falling asleep.
  • He is always swinging his arms up and down, and bicycling his legs.  On the floor, in the bath, in the bouncer, while being held.  Always. 
  • Compared to his crazy brothers at this age, Emmett is pretty quiet and mild.
  • He is so soft and squishy.  I love to smother him with kisses and nibble on him.

Although it's been a tough go, we sure wouldn't send this little Emmerooney back.  He has taught us new things, and that we still have a lot left to learn.  He is so sweet and so special, and so so sooooo so cute.  And we love him a lot! 


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5 Years Old

November 14th, 2011 Annelise Posted in birthdays, comparing, month markers, Mr. Sammers, pictures, remembering when No Comments »

Five years old!  That is so grown up to me.  No more baby, no more toddler, no more little boy.  Samuel is 5!  I can still remember the excitement of waking up in the middle of the night to my water breaking.  I remember after the quick three hours of labor, the long 3 hours of pushing.  I remember how pleased I was when Erik smiled and told me, "Oh yeah, he has a lot of hair!"  I remember holding my sweet little baby in my arms, looking into his eyes, and saying, "This is Sam."  That was five years ago!  What a blessing this bright, clever, funny, tender-hearted boy has been to us since then.  Love you so very much, Samuel.  Happy birthday!!     

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3 Months Old

November 9th, 2011 Annelise Posted in Emmett M, month markers 1 Comment »

Emmett M. Emmerooney. Emster. Emmy Lemmy. Little Emmers. Chunky Munk. Chubalubs. Chubba Wubba. The Smoosh. My Squishy. The Mythical Child. 

Whatever you call him, he is pretty dang awesome.  He goes to bed between 10 and 11 and wakes up once during the next 10 to 12 hours.  He will even go back to bed awake and fall asleep on his own at night.  His eat-play-sleep schedule is pretty predictable.  He just really struggles getting to sleep!  And his nights from about 7 until he goes down get pretty tricky.  We are wild about his big cheeky smiles and his sweet soft voice.  He is pretty quiet, but has lots to say if you ask, and then he takes his talking very seriously.  I so love my nightly chats with him after his two big brothers are in bed.  He is so totally a third child, and is pretty content with being ignored and just as fine with being mauled by his big brothers.  He enjoys his bouncer, the playmat, and even tummy time.  He devours his fists, drools like crazy, and has started sticking his tongue out a lot.  He loves to play So Big with his mommy.  He hates the bath.  Hates it.  He has a horrible awful scream that hurts my ears and make his brothers cry.  And the only time you will ever hear it is during bath time.  He kicks his legs and swings his arms and gets himself bouncing pretty good in his chair, but he still hasn't shown any desire or attempt to roll over.  Which is foreign to us.  Also foreign to us: his amazingly squishy legs, his baby boobs, his chunky arms, his meaty hands, and his deliciously fat face.  I really cannot get over the cuteness of this baby of ours.  With the other two storm clouds banging around each day, he is my beautiful ray of sunshine.  Love.

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Two Months Old

October 13th, 2011 Annelise Posted in comparing, Emmett M, milestones, month markers No Comments »

October 9, 2011

Oh this squishy little baby.  We love him so so much.  His tummy still hurts him, but not near as often or as bad; it's usually just for a bit before bedtime.  He has really good awake time, and will hang out quietly in the bouncer, swing, or playmat for good chunks of time.  His neck and back are getting very strong.  He holds himself up great.  He has found his fists and loves to devour them.  He drools.  He blows bubbles, and both of his older brothers think that's funny and worth pointing out every time they see it.  He coos and makes sweet noises if you're listening for it.  He has such a darling smile, and always has a big one for his daddy when he comes home.  If you're lucky, you might get to see his squinter, where his fat smiling cheeks make his eyes squint almost shut.  And ooooh those cheeks.  Mormor called them bulldog cheeks.  I could kiss and nuzzle them all day long.  There are still a few 0-3 month sized clothes he fits into, but just barely.  He slept in his own room last night.  It was time.  But still a little sad to let him go . . .  you know, clear to the other side of the hall.  He doesn't have a good nickname yet.  I'm working on it.  Sweet smooshy little Emmett M.

I went a little crazy with the pictures.  Then I couldn't bear to edit any out.

Two months stats: 12 lbs 15 oz (62%) and 23 inches (75%)

Samuel 2 months, Owen 2 months, Emmett 2 months.

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One Month

September 11th, 2011 Annelise Posted in Emmett M, month markers 3 Comments »

September 9, 2011

Remember when I told you what a sleepy baby Emmett was?  And how he hardly ever cried?  Yeah, that was soooo two weeks ago!  Poor little Em is gassy gassy gassy gassy gassy!!!  He has much more awake time now, but I spend most of it soothing him or trying to calm him down.  Bummer.  I'm watching closely what I eat and so far I don't see any "trends" so if the unhappiness continues much longer, I'm going to have to buckle down and start cutting things out to see if I can peg what's hurting this little babe so much.   His sleep is still awfully inconsistent and completely unpredictable.  Nights are rough.  Emmett is often up every two hours or less.  But at least he goes back down pretty easily, except for usually one time during the night when it's the gas keeping him awake.  Then he can be up for an hour or so before settling down and going back to sleep.  For another 90 minutes or so.   

But when he is awake and content, Emmett is a darling beautiful so so cute little boy.  Emmett changes more and more each and every day.  And guess what?  He might even be a bit chubby.  Seriously!   He is smothered constantly by both of his doting big brothers.  His favorite place to be is up on someone's shoulder.  He likes to look around and track things with his big blue eyes.  He has started cooing and making sweet noises.  He makes funny faces.  He also smiles!   Real smiles.  And boy, do they melt our hearts!  We like this baby.  A lot. 


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2 Weeks Old

August 23rd, 2011 Annelise Posted in doctor, Emmett M, month markers 3 Comments »

I saw a largely pregnant lady tonight.  I've almost forgotten what that was like.  In only two weeks. 

Little Emmett M. has changed so much.  I swear he changes a bit every day.  We have decided that above the nose, he looks like Owen.  Below the nose he looks like Sam.  And that solid nose is all his own.   

Seriously, check out that schnozzer.

Emmett has really started to "wake up."  He is still a very sleepy baby, although there is also still no consistency or predictability to it.  But his awake time is much more alert and aware.  His eyes are so bright and he's really starting to take things in.

Tummy time!

Emmett makes all sorts of cute faces.  He raises his eyebrows, crinkles his forehead, and even gives us funny little smiles.  (The gas kind, right?  Because when I kiss his little neck and tell him I love him, he can't possibly be smiling for real.)  Though not nearly as much as the first few days he was born, he still makes cute little popping sounds with his mouth.

Emmett really isn't a crier.  He starts to fuss when he's hungry, or when he wakes up and we wait too long to get him.  But really, he is our mildest baby so far.  The most I've heard him cry was on the way home from picking up Grandma B at the airport the last 15 minutes, and today at his check up when he got his tongue tie clipped.  (But it was being held still and the doctor's hand in his mouth that made him mad, because as soon as he was done and back up, he was totally over it.)

Emmett does this awesome poop dance.  He starts squirming and making noises while his tummy churns, then his whole body kinda jumps, his arms and legs stretch out right on cue with the big rumble in his diaper.  I don't know why I think it's so funny, but it's made me laugh out loud at 3 am.   

Of course I am forever scarred by my first two underweight children and my crazy psychological issues, so feeding/eating is a constant anxiety.  I cry to Erik almost every day about having to poke and prod Em to practically force him to eat, and why won't my babies just get big and fat, and why can't this part ever be easy, and blah blah blah.  Well, at least my crazies were put to rest (for now) at Emmett's appointment today.  He weighed in at 8 lbs 13 oz and measured 21 inches.  Everything looked great and checked out fantastically! 

Emmett is really really cute.  We like him a lot.  Two weeks down.  We can do this.

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21 Months

March 16th, 2011 Annelise Posted in Little O-Man, month markers 4 Comments »

Our little O-man is getting dangerously close to 2!¬† He has really grown up these last few months.¬† He has also had a rough run.¬† Nothing serious, just cold after virus after ear infection after cough . . . on and on.¬† It turned O into a pretty miserable, unbearable little stink.¬† His nights were the worst, and it all went on for so long we really started wondering what had happened to our Bubs.¬† It became pretty concerning and very very¬†challenging.¬† One particularly bad night, Erik was upstairs with him while I listened through the monitor.¬† I had the thought that it was time for a priesthood blessing.¬† Not moments after thinking that, Erik came down to get his oil and we both went back up.¬† I held Owen while Erik administered and gave him a sweet blessing.¬† Well whatever it was,¬†O finally got it out of his system.¬† A couple weeks ago we got the old Owen¬†back, and we couldn’t be happier.¬†

Now Owen is¬†most definitely almost 2!!¬† He is so destructive and into ev.er.y.thing!¬† Sometimes I feel like I spend all day going from one Owen induced mess to another.¬† He tries to throw tantrums, but he is almost too sweet to have figured it out entirely.¬† So far, they’re pretty half-hearted efforts.¬† It’s usually pretty funny to¬†watch.¬† Owen is also growing up and learning so so much.¬† He has so many words,¬†and is putting together all kinds of new concepts each day.¬†¬†He is still a little guy,¬†with a small face and petite little head.¬† But he has big hands and huge fat feet.¬† Owen is wearing shoes that Samuel wore last summer.¬† Here are a few other things I don’t want to forget about Owen James right now . . .

He loves to¬†throw away “gar-bish.”¬† One morning he kept bringing me¬†different snacks before I finally realized he wasn’t eating any of them, but stashing them under his table and throwing the wrappers in the garbage.

He loves to steal our wallets and tear them apart.  He also goes nuts if he gets his hand on my church keys.

He¬†recognizes letters and numbers and points to them saying, “R R R L M O R R R.”

He loves to sing.¬† Itsy Bitsy Spider is still his favorite.¬† He also loves Old MacDonald and Wheels on the Bus.¬† He will come up to me and ask “Bider?” and crawl his little fingers.¬† Or he will ask, “Donald?¬† Yee-yi-yo” while he bops his head left and right.¬† Or “Bus?¬† Sssh ssh!”¬† He must have learned a new song in nursery the other day, because after church he was bouncing around singing “Shooosh, ya ya ya” or something like that.¬† I have no idea what it was, but he kept doing it over and over.

Ooooh, nursery!!¬† It’s been a rough road that I’ve sat back and let Erik ride all by himself.¬† Three months later, O still cries when he gets dropped off, but calms down and stays the whole time without anyone coming to get us.¬† And he always comes home happy, cheering for himself with his arms in the air, “Shree!¬† Yay!!”¬†and talking about “bubbles, balls, play Memmy.”

“Memmy” is his girlfriend, Emily.¬† He also knows Samuel’s friends, “Jacob, Game-b, and¬†Nay-fif” and talks about them a lot, especially when Sam is at school.¬† All four grandparents and Caroline are called “Mah-mah.”¬† And he calls himself “Owie.”

He always greets me in the morning with a “Hi Mommy!”¬† Then he asks where Sam and Daddy are.¬† As soon as he sees them, they get a big “Hi Daddy, Hi Sam,” too.

He still doesn’t eat a lot, and spits out a ton.¬† It’s so annoying.¬† He knows we don’t like it.¬† Because each time he says, “I stip.¬† No stipping,” and shakes his head.

But he loves a good cookie.¬† Samoas have been a huge hit during Girl Scout cookie season.¬† He also loves “say-soh” or cereal, and asks for it 3 times a day at least.

He readily puts himself on time out.¬† I’ve only actually put him there 2 or 3 times.¬† But if he gets spoken to in a stern voice, he hangs his head and runs right over to the naughty stool and sits himself down until I come kiss him on the head.

He is great at pretend sleeping.¬† I like that game.¬† I can just tell him to go sleep, and he will round up his blankets, whale, and monkey, and go to “sleep” anywhere.¬† He closes his eyes and snores for a minute before popping an eye open to smile at me.

He loves his big brother’s boots.¬† In fact, he loves almost everything about his big brother.¬† It is so much fun to watch the two play together happily.¬† But he also has a very specific and distinct scream that always means, “Mooom, Sam is doing something I don’t like!!”

He also has the cutest, “HEY!” when someone does something he doesn’t like.¬† It’s one of our favorite things about him.¬† It’s really really cute.¬† So is his “Yeah” and big head nod when you ask him something.

Owen continues to amaze us with his sheer¬†cuteness.¬† He is silly, funny, a bit crazy, but also so very tender and sweet.¬† He is kind, friendly, and loves being close to us.¬† We are¬†so crazy in love with this little sweetheart who lights up our¬†home, and we can’t imagine our family without him.¬†¬†¬†¬†

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50 Months

January 12th, 2011 Annelise Posted in growing up, month markers, Mr. Sammers, ward 3 Comments »

So Mr. Sammers is 4 years old!¬† (And he has been for 2 months.¬† Oops.)¬† That seems so grown up to me.¬† Samuel is loud, outgoing, wild, adventurous, and always has to be part of the action.¬† He is not ok just sitting on the sidelines.¬† And if there isn’t action, he will create some.¬† He is often out of control.¬† Samuel is stubborn, dramatic, challenging, soooo argumentative, and sassy to boot.¬† But I take comfort in his big heart.¬† Samuel is sensitive and emotional.¬† He is polite and a bit precocious, but also very funny and silly.¬† And he is such a bright little boy.¬† ¬†¬†

Sam still has the craziest memory.¬† He was playing with his sharks the other day, and told me when and where he got each one of them, and who was with him at the time.¬† And he was totally right.¬† He will be playing and say something totally random, and I’ll ask him where that came from.¬† It’s often from a movie or book, and even one that he hasn’t read or seen in ages.¬† He can recite to you the entire scenes of How To Train Your Dragon when Stoic tells Hiccup his is no longer his son, and when Stoic finds¬†Toothless and Hiccup after they defeat the “Odenheppus.”¬† He can show you the bus stop we dropped Caroline off at one single time 2 years ago.¬† ¬†

Samuel is a great big brother.¬† He loves his little brother and is really good about “keeping him safe.”¬† Sometimes I want to pull my hair out when he teases, antagonizes, and hurts Owen nonstop.¬† But Erik reassures me that’s just how brothers are.¬† And Samuel is just as often kind, silly, and protective towards Owen.¬† It is probably my most favorite thing ever to watch the two of them play together.¬† I love being upstairs and watching Sam invite Owen into his room, then close the door behind them.¬† I listen to them chat and laugh and bang around, and my Grinchy heart grows three sizes bigger.¬† They also are really good at tearing around with their big trucks.¬† They both think it’s hilarious when Sam chases Owen around and around the kitchen table.¬† Sam very often just calls Owen, “brother” and I think it’s darling.¬† Sam has also taught Owen a lot of great lessons, like how to say “Mine” “Share!” and “My turn!!”

Sambo also loves his friends.¬† He talks about them¬†often and always wants to play with them and do special things for them.¬† He has made a couple good friends at school, too, and it’s so fun for me to see this little bit of interaction when I drop him off and pick him up.¬† He is not one bit shy, and always enjoys a new playmate.¬† At Owen’s gymnastics class, Samuel saw another boy who was there with his mom and little brother.¬† Sam walked right over and asked his name, then told him he had trucks to share.¬†¬†Sam also has a few imaginary friends.¬† Samsam and Ahgoshk (it is the weirdest word,¬†more like a sound really, so I’m doing my best to give it a spelling) are the regulars, but he has several others that make appearances when he’s bored or just needs a buddy.

I’ve been super under the weather recently and much lazier than usual.¬† The TV has been on waaaaay too much.¬† And it’s made me start to wonder if Samuel has forgetton how to just PLAY.¬† But when I give him quiet time in his room or turn off the boob tube, I am reminded quickly of¬†his amazing imagination and his creative play.¬† One of the best Christmas investments was a dress up bin with lots of costume pieces I collected from the dollar store at Halloween time.¬† Right now, Samuel is most often Indiana Jones, equipped with hat and ribbon (his whip.)¬† He still also loves to be Fireman Sam and save the day.¬† He spent an hour with his¬†soldier headset on, playing ice cream man and McDonalds drive thru attendant.¬† Anything, ANYTHING, can be quickly turned into a shield and sword.¬†

And Samuel likes to tell me stories in the car.¬† Today it was “a story about a time when my Mom was so so scared.¬† Mom was inside the house playing with her kids.¬† Then there was a scary knock at the door.¬† It was a big mean scary thing .¬†. . A TYRANNOSAURUS REX!!¬† Everyone was so scared and tried to hide.¬† But the tyrannosaurus was too big to come in the door and fit in the house.¬† And then Mom and everyone was safe and happy again.”¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†

Sam has really taken off at preschool.¬† He can spell his name perfectly, and tries really hard to write it.¬† He loves to point out letters, and tell us what they’re for.¬† “I see an E!¬† I have an E in my name, and so does¬†Daddy.¬† AND Owen!!”¬† He always asks me what certain words start with.¬† But he says it like, “What’s car start for?”¬† Then I’ll say, “I know, but you tell me.”¬† “Car.¬† C-c-c-car.¬† I know, too.¬† C!!”¬† He gets so¬†excited for sharing days, and¬†usually has them planned out days in advance.¬† He comes home telling me stories and singing me songs.¬† He is also learning some good life lessons there . . . like not everyone has to be your friend, but we still need to be kind and respectful.¬† His teachers reports that he is a kind, helpful and caring little boy with a huge personality.¬† She says he grasps onto the new math concepts so quickly and always likes to help the other kids who haven’t finished their work yet.¬†

Samuel loves Primary.¬† He spent all of October practicing his part for¬†the Primary¬†program and could barely contain himself when he got to stand up at the pulpit and say the part that he came up with himself and memorized.¬† Now Sam has officially graduated from¬†Sunbeams and is a CTR 4.¬†¬†It’s only been 2 weeks now,¬†but he likes to remind me that “Now I am a C-T-R and I choose the right!”¬† He loves to raise his hand to tell stories during Primary.¬† (I asked the Bishop to come in for one of my Sharing Times.¬† He spoke about forgiveness and asked if any of the kids had ever been hurt or angry.¬† Sam shot out of his chair and quickly told everyone, “Yesterday, my dad got mad and threw me then hit me with a pillow and I was so sad I cried.”)¬† Sam is also always willing to help out when someone with an assignment in opening exercises doesn’t show.¬† (Perk of being the Primary President’s son, I guess.¬†ūüėČ )¬† He loves the stories of Samuel the boy prophet, and Samuel the Lamanite.¬† He likes to remind me when I do something Jesus wouldn’t be happy about.¬† So I take that as one point for Mom who just might be teaching this kid something!

Samaram loves sharks, dinosaurs and trucks, knights and dragons.¬† He asks me almost every day if he can ride his bike, and every time he gets out of the car, he tries to sneak in a ride.¬† He loves to read, and right now “The Pain and the Great One” is his favorite.¬† He is in love with a new show on PBS called Wild Kratts.¬† He changes his clothes so many times a day.¬† And he knows if he’s going to get away with it, he has to do it in secrecy so I can’t stop him.¬† He loves poptarts, pancakes,¬†gogurt, and clementines.¬†

My darling little Samuel will always have a special place in my heart being my very first baby.¬† He is such a wonderful kid with an amazing spirit and we are so blessed to have him in our family.¬† I surely can NOT believe it’s been 4 years!¬† Love you to pieces, oodles and oodles, Mr. Sammerjammer of mine.

{The following¬†did not go quite like I imagined.¬† You will get dizzy watching this kid.¬† He NEVER. SITS. STILL.¬† And seriously, I’m so annoying. But for the sake of history, eh?}

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