Wow! Today you are 11 months old. You're almost one! It's so strange to think about this time last year: we were hoping and praying that you wouldn't be born on Christmas Day, but that you would be born before January 3rd, when your Aunt Rachel would be leaving. We had no idea that you'd wait another whole month before joining us!
Lane, in the past month you have become a joy. You were fun before, but in the past few weeks you have gotten over the stranger anxiety that overtook you about two months ago, and it has made you much more fun to be around. You no longer cry the entire time your babysitter is here, but instead you play with her and have fun. You no longer cling to mommy's legs the entire time she's cooking, and you can let her leave the room without wailing (most of the time). It's so nice to see you learning things, like that mommy will come back.
You got a new tooth this month! You got your other top tooth exactly one month after the first one popped through. You are the most fantastic teether in the whole wide world, Lane. You don't drool, you don't have bad diapers, and you're barely even fussy. You're spoiling us.
You are finally learning how to actually play with some of your toys! One of your grandmas got you a Melissa & Doug "fill and spill" picnic basket for Christmas, but we gave it to you early (as per her request). At first you were just enthralled with the lettuce, which crinkles. Now, however, you are starting to understand the concepts of fill and spill. You put all the pieces into the basket and take them all out, and you like to pull all of the velcro sandwich pieces apart. You still like to play with clothes pins too, but now you dump them all out of their storage basket and then pick them all up, putting them back into the basket and then repeating the process. You've started trying to stack the rings on your stacker, but you haven't had success yet. You also have started to like books a lot this month. You've gone through phases in which different books were your favorites: first it was Brown Bear, Brown Bear. Then it was Farm Friends. Then My Little Word Book. Now it's Dr. Suess' ABC Book. And there are lots of other books that you prefer to chew on, although you're doing better at not putting everything in your mouth.
This month you took your first long bus ride: we took a 4 1/2-hour ride to another city in Turkey to see some friends, and you did great. The bus ride didn't even start until your bedtime, but you were fantastic until the last 45 minutes when you were just so tired and it wasn't comfortable to sleep on mommy anymore. We've also started to transition you into just one nap each day, and you're doing really well with it. Now you take one 2-3 hour nap instead of two 1-hour naps. We also let you taste cow's milk for the first time, and you like it ok, but definitely not cold!
You have a few new words as well! You say "mama" and "dada" of course, but we've also heard you say "nite nite" and "nana" (for banana), although it's been awhile since we heard "nite nite." You started pointing at things too, and now you point at what you want to eat or play with if it's not in your reach. The pointing is often accompanied by a "NEH!" which we think means "that," or something similar. You are now notorious for grabbing us by our fingers, leading us into the kitchen, pointing to where the bananas are, and yelling, "NEH!" You, my child, are a banana monster. And a cheese monster. It's a good thing you also love apples and plums and vegetables!
Lane, we love you so, so much. Every day we remark how sweet you are, how cute you are, how blessed we are, and how God is so good to us to give us you. You love to be chased and tickled and you oblige when mommy holds her arms wide open, running in for a hug. You give us kisses sometimes when we ask for one making smoochy noises. You love to play outside and poke at the dirt or pull up grass and pull leaves off of plants. You examine what you've picked up or pulled up and proudly hand it over to us, waiting for us to look at it as well. You're such a little person, and mommy, at least, gets overwhelmed with God and his creativity and ingenuity in designing people and the whole growth process. Watching you grow is like taking a class on apologetics, as there is no way that someone could look at you and the way you learn and grow and determine that you were caused by chance. God created you. And he gave you to us. And for that, we are grateful.
We love you,
Mommy and Daddy
In your new froggy jammies, mommy's favorites! You now like to drag that magazine basket all around the house with you!
"Look, Lane, look!" On your first long bus ride.
Love that smirk! Betcha anything there's banana in your mouth!
Mommy got a birthday present, and you were fascinated with pulling the tissue paper out of the bag.
Another early Christmas present. You've enjoyed chewing on the case as much as actually watching the show (which you won't do at all unless mommy or daddy are snuggling with you)!
While this is a horrible photo, quality-wise, I love the action of it: this is exactly how you look when you're excited and going fast!
You've started pointing to your blankie and giraffe and wanting to carry them around the house with you. You love them.
You really like refrigerator magnets now!
You're becoming so independent, wanting to feed yourself, use a spoon, and we're working on helping you drink from a regular cup without our help.
Outside in the snow for the first time (when you could actually see the snow coming down).