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I am so in love with this kid it hurts.  I can’t describe it.  I know most of you moms know what I’m talking about and you can’t describe it either.  It just hurts.  And it’s accompanied by the overwhelming daily fear of all the bad that could happen to him.  And while I know I can’t live in fear, and that I have to push away those thoughts…sometimes it’s a struggle.  And I know it will only worsen as he grows and goes out into the world.  All of the fragility and innocence of that little life is sometimes just too much.  I think I’m going to use this SIDS monitor until he’s 18.  That’s okay right?!?

Another big emotional milestone is coming up too…Ritter starts school on monday.  He will be attending the toddler program at The Discovery School at Temple Emanual on Highland.  We wanted to do Montessori preschool but a spot didn’t open up for him even though we’ve been on the waiting list.  So…we started looking around and found The Discovery School and love it.  Ritter’s teacher is Mrs. Mandy and he has about 5 kids in his class.  It’s a very small school which I love.  I am SO nervous about his first week.  I know he handles change very well so I am trying not to freak out…but I know he will probably cry that first day and be pretty freaked out.  The thought of him being scared and not understanding what is going on makes me so sad.  For his entire life he’s been at home with Taylor and Brenda…he knows nothing else.  Music class has been good for him to get used to being around other kids but I’ve always been with him…I’m just so nervous about how he will do when he’s left somewhere.  I thought about taking off work that day in case I was a wreck but I know it will be good for me to focus on work and not call the school fifty thousand times.  Y’all pray for me.

Anyhoo…this age is so much fun I almost can’t stand it.  I want to freeze time!  This kid is so funny and smart and cool.  And he knows it too!  He SO knows it!  And we’ve been going and doing alot more with him which is also super fun.  We have a big trip planned for Thanksgiving to go see my dad’s family in NC.  I can’t wait…although I’m kinda dreading the 9 hour car ride.  Ritter isn’t the best traveler so we’ll see how that goes.

New Stuff….alot of this is the same as last month but some new stuff too…

1)  Words….
He talks like..whoa!  Here’s a short list of words he knows and says regularly..I’m not kidding y’all…major language here…
Ball
Go
Jax (for Jackson)
Phone
Momma
Dada
Tree
Doc
Key
Keys (knows the difference)
Shoe
Sock
Treat (wants to give Jackson his treats – then gets mad when he eats it and won’t give it back!)
Soap
Choo Choo
Cup
Bowl
Read
Eat
Gone
Cin Cin (more like Ce Ce)
Me Me
Tay
Good
Bag
Dog
Close (but not open)
Car
Truck
Bye Bye
Shake
Boo
He tries to say Toodles (from mickey) but it’s more like “tools”

2)  Doing…
He is so funny y’all.  He tries to feed his stuffed Mickey and Jackson.  He tries to put on his clothes, shoes, and socks.  He puts sunglasses on and takes them off over and over.  He waves bye bye and it’s SO cute.  He LOVES to open and close things.  Right now he’s obsessed with bottles with caps.  I gave him a bunch of empty vitamin bottles and those are his favorite toys right now.  He takes the caps off and on over and over.  He’s not really interested in drawing or coloring yet but he wants to take the crayons out of the box and put them back over and over.  He’s started giving hugs, cuddles, and kisses.  The absolute BEST is when he tries to make me and Eric kiss.  If we are both sitting in the floor with him he will reach out and turn our heads towards each other and make us kiss.  Then we both kiss him and he giggles SO much! He loves to play chase and hide and then turn around and say BOO!  He is now laughing when he passes gas.  I swear we didn’t encourage that! He also thinks it’s hysterical when I sneeze, blow my nose, or swiffer.  Ha!  No idea why.  He’s also following instructions and even if he doesn’t know an exact word you use, he can infer what you mean from context…which, of course, means he’s super smart!  He can also point to his toes, belly button, nose, and mouth when you ask him to.  He’s also playing with his toys alot more these days – particularly cars, trucks, and trains.  He will move them back and forth and try to make a little “vroom vroom” sound.

3)  Physical Stuff….
MOTOR SKILLS- He is finally WALKING!!! This kid went from no steps to walking all over the house in a matter of days.  It’s been a week since his first steps and he literally isn’t crawling anymore…walking everywhere.  He has that zombie walk where he holds his hands out in front of him and it’s ADORABLE!!!  As far as his fine motor skills go, he still seems really advanced.  I can’t believe the things he can do with those little hands.  He has this little workbench/pounder thing that has pegs in it.  He’s supposed to use the hammer to bang the pegs down but he pulls them out and puts them back into the little holes over and over.  He also can put coins into his piggy bank through that little tiny slot and his latest obsession is trying to fit the front door key into the key hole…we’ll see how long that takes him.  He’s obsessed with that key and he walks over and points to it, makes you take it out of the lock and hand it to him, and then he tries to put the key into the door knob.  Crazy! He’s also learned that you have to screw caps onto bottles so instead of just sitting them on top of the bottle – he’s now trying to turn them.

TEETH – He was pretty fussy, clingy, and drooly for a couple of weeks and I knew something was up.  This past weekend he finally cut TWO top molars and he’s been back to his old self again.  I ain’t gonna lie…those molars were a doozy.  He was so fussy and clingy and the only thing that helped was tylenol which we didn’t want to give daily…so most days we just dealt with it.  He was still able to play and laugh, but you could tell he didn’t feel good and he just wasn’t as content.  Since they’ve cut he’s perfectly normal again.  I know the bottom ones are coming soon…kinda dreading that.  So now he has a total of 10 teeth!  And I’m giving him harder foods now that he has molars which he seems to be enjoying!

FOOD – He still eats like an absolute champ.  Will eat anything.  He seems to go through pickier times when he’s teething but other than that he will eat anything.  I STILL find myself in awe when I watch him eat 3 helpings of brussel sprouts or spinach!  So proud of my good eater!  He’s also still drinking the non dairy milk (about 15 oz per day) and about 2 cups of water.  He pees alot!  ha

STATS – Ritter definitely seems to be losing his baby fat.  He looks so different from even a couple of months ago.  He’s gotten taller and slimmer.  Around his first bday I was putting him in 24 mo/2T clothes because he was so chunky.  Even though things were long on him, it was all I could find that fit in the waist.  Now that he’s slimmed up he’s actually wearing 12-18 month clothes again.  Which makes me happy because his wardrobe will last a little longer!  He lost weight since his bday too – down to 25 pounds, 8 ounces from 25 pounds, 10 ounces.  He’s 31.5 inches tall.  Still in size 5 diapers.  He recently started cutting first molars.  He’s cut both top ones and the bottom right – the bottom left should come in any day now.  So he has a total of 11 teeth right now.

Photos…

Getting so big!!!

Getting so big!!!

Another trip to publix - this is becoming our friday afternoon tradition.

Another trip to publix – this is becoming our friday afternoon tradition.

At the park with daddy!

At the park with daddy!

Loves to swing!

Loves to swing!

Big boy at music class!

Big boy at music class!

Digging in the instrument box.

Digging in the instrument box.

Starbucks with mommy!

Starbucks with mommy!

Daddy dressed me today.

Daddy dressed me today.

Looking handsome at Whole Foods.

Looking handsome at Whole Foods.

Showing off his walking skills when we visited his school last week.

Showing off his walking skills when we visited his school last week.

Here are a few I took at the park on the first nice cool sunday afternoon we had….

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Fall makes me so happy… here are some from Boo at the Zoo and our visit to the J for the Jewish Food fest (which also had a pumpkin patch 🙂 ) …

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Videos…

UPDATE:
11/17/14

I’ve noticed more new cool things Ritter has been doing over the last couple of weeks so I decided just to add here instead of making another post…

Animal sounds – we’ve been working on this for a while but all of a sudden he’s doing them when we ask.  He knows cow (moo), duck (quack), and dog (ruff).  It’s super cute.  And when you ask him what a train says he goes “choo choo.”  And when you ask him what Superman says he says “shhhhhhh” which is the sound we make when we are playing with superman and making him fly through the air.

We started brushing his teeth recently which we do while in the bath.  If we forget he literally takes his finger and rubs it across his teeth mimicking the toothbrush movement.  It’s like he expects it and remembers even if we don’t.  So smart.

I was holding a bottle of lotion the other day and he said “shun” and started rubbing his hands on his belly the way we apply lotion to him at night.

Okay so I SWEAR I’m not crazy.  I think he’s memorizing lines of the books we read alot.  I’ve noticed SEVERAL times that when I’m reading to him he will say the first word of the next line even before I say it!!!!  What!?!  I have a ridiculously good memory – maybe it’s hereditary!

Dancing.  He kinda did this before but he’s doing it alot more these days.  He particularly loves Taylor Swift’s Shake It Off.  He requests it by saying “shake shake.”

Naming things.  He is all about naming things in pictures now.  He sees a photo of me, Eric, my mom, Taylor, or Brenda and he’ll point and name who is in it.  He also says “dog” now when he sees a picture of a dog.  And this is crazy because I didn’t teach it to him, but he can name all the disney characters when he sees them on books or on TV.  He knows Doc, Toodles (sounds like “tools”), Pluto (sounds more like “ploo”), Donald (sounds like “don”), Mickey, Chug (for Chuggington), and Jake.  What does that say about how much TV he’s watching?!?  OMG!  I swear it’s not that much.

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