I apologize in advance

for not having any pictures today.  My camera is MIA, most likely in the sinkhole that I call a van, and I don't have the inclination to go look for it right now.  I did get some cute shots of Ruby's graduation yesterday.  It was very sweet and she had a lot of fun.  Patrick was thankfully there because I could have never handled Nicholas for the hour-plus program without him.  We basically passed him back and forth, feeding him goldfish crackers (Patrick) and breast-milk (me.)

I realized that I am in a transition period right now along with my baby.  His explosion of growth and development has totally taken me by surprise.  I feel kind of groggy about how to handle it all...like my toddler (gasp!) parenting skills were in a deep sleep and just now being shaken madly to WAKE UP!  WAKE UP!  WE NEED  YOU OUT HERE!  Which of course, they were and are.

Thank God for google.  For being able to read about 13 month-old development and seeing that Nicholas is totally within the normal range.  I do feel like he is doing some stuff about 5 months earlier than my other two but I've heard that 3rd children can be like that...in a hurry.  I am slowly recalling things like:  sometimes the best way to handle a situation is to avoid it in the first place and how to ignore the dirty looks as you push your screeching child through Target, furiously scrambling to get the box of goldfish crackers open. 

I'm also mourning my previous situations a little bit.  When James and Ruby were babies I was surrounded by friends with kids of the same ages.  We could talk and laugh about the irritating behavior and see what was next in the older children.  I don't have that anymore and I miss it.  I am now the old lady with the baby.  :)  I don't really want to go make new friends, though I wouldn't be opposed if it happened, so I will have to figure out new ways to get myself through this.  Luckily most of my friends still remember it so they can be sympathetic.  That helps a lot.

The flip side of Nicholas' new behavior is, well, Nicholas.

Patrick and I recently talked about how perfect his face is to us.  Can you imagine someone asking you to design a face??  Where would you even start?  It blows my mind that God has created billions of unique faces and that the one He gave my boy is the most perfect face in the world to me.  (just like the faces of James and Ruby.  They are all my favorite.)  Just stopping and looking at his face softens my heart.  He is so freaking cute.

He is also super funny and LOVES a good laugh or joke.  He gets when stuff is funny.  We also (of course) think he is super clever and has excellent fine motor skills.  He is learning to go backwards down the stairs now which is awesome.  He understands so much of what we say and that is amazing to see again, even for the third time.  He will bring me tiny things he finds on the carpet and is super happy when I let him hold the forbidden Legos for a few minutes.  He is a little cuddle bug at nap and bed times and gives me the sweetest kisses.  He will put up with a lot of crap from James and Ruby (mostly Ruby) but does have his limits.  He adores Patrick.  (They are like two naughty peas in a pod.)  He has no interest in books yet but LOVES cars and trucks.  He also enjoys balls and a good block tower.  He feeds himself pretty well with a spoon and fork and is now shrieking if I give him the "baby" spoon.  He wants a silver one, DAMMIT.  He has the tiniest butt and, like I said, my favorite face.

So I might choose to vent here about the hard stuff (because I know that hard usually equals funny and I do like to laugh about it all...afterwards.) and I might choose to gush...I'm sure some of both.    I love having this blog because I can go back and see what my life was like 4 years ago, when Ruby was 1.  It was a lot like it is now and that is comforting because I don't remember that in my head.

And now the tiny baby bobcat is awake and growling in his crib.

As always, thanks for listening.



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