18 Things For 18 Months.

Illustrated with crappy iPhone videos, for your visual pleasure.

We had a bit of a milestone in our house last week. A half milestone, if you will. Des turned 18 months! It used to be such a big age to me because that’s when I took my first steps. I was such a little show-off, actually, that WHILE I took my VERY first steps, I said, “A, B, C, 1, 2, 3!” Naturally, my parents were thrilled to pieces and I have seen photos of this momentous occasion.

Of course back then, no one worried about me. I was an early talker/late walker, in a long line of them. Well Des surprised us all by taking his first steps when he was technically still 16 months. A marvel, right? So as 18 months crept closer, it lost some of its weight to me because I no longer had the deadline looming in front of me that if Des didn’t walk by 18 months, we’d have to schedule some sort of physical therapy. I do need to defend his doctor, that there was no intention or worry to do so ever.

This was my very own fear. I always knew he was ok, very bright even, but it’s sort of a neurotic mother thing. We worry.

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However, I do want to celebrate my walking, talking baby-turned-toddler in all of his glory, with 18 cool things about him:

1. He wears his sunglasses at night.

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Or upside down. And he is very interested in keeping them balanced on his head while he walks:

2. He is trained that if you ask him, “Who farted?” He’ll say, “Me!”

3. He hugs on command, and will really give you a squeeze while resting his head on your shoulder. And he wears cute outfits when he does it.

4. If he’s calling my name (Mama) and I don’t answer, he’ll yell, “Mom-meeeeee!” with a smile and extra emphasis on the second syllable. I’ve been pretty adamant about being a Mama, but it’s so cute that I’ve started responding to Mommy.

5. He has looked me in the eyes and said, “I love Mama.”

6. He is so curious about the world, but he’s never broken anything. We all have a tendency to leave out drinking glasses and eyeglasses and small parts of toys within his reach on the coffee table, and he’s so gentle and careful. He also doesn’t mess much with our Christmas tree and its ornaments. He only steals Scarlet’s toys when she’s at school:

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7. He’s at that age in which he talks constantly and in full sentences..but half the time, it’s in his own language. When I don’t know what he’s saying, I pretend I do and we have total conversations back and forth and people just stare at us in confusion.

8. He also has conversations with himself. I’ll hear him ask a question, and then fire back with, “NO!”

9. He loves his Lambie and he takes her (yes, her) everywhere. (there are actually three spares of her..shh..) He knows her name and can call her, “Lambie.” However, if he’s looking for her, he says, “Mi-yo? Baba?” and when he’s reunited with her, he puts her nose in his mouth and throws his arms up in glee. If he sees a photo of her he’ll say, “Baba!”

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10. When I walk out of the room and he cries and yells “Mama!” I secretly like it because I often feel invisible.

11. Our fierce bond started in the NICU when I pleaded (softly) with him to help us get him home. Amidst the crying (of adults and children), the alarms going off, the wires attached to every inch of him, the constant beeping of monitors, and the 24/7 cat-like yowling of the baby across the way from him, he was dreamy, peaceful and sleepy during his six day stay:

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(See, Kenya and Nellie? He didn’t have a lot of hair at birth!)

12. He started saying, “Eo” a lot while handing us things. Eventually we realized it meant, “Here you go.” It’s progressing to sound more like, “He go!” but I’ve been calling him “Captain EO.” Bonus points for getting that reference!

13. Last week I had to work at night and when I got home, he was already in bed. I wanted to sneak in a hug so I went into his bedroom and he still still awake and was singing the My Little Pony theme song in his crib.

14. Also last week he got away from me while I was on the phone, and I followed a trail of toys and trinkets to find him in the back bedroom, digging his knees into a whoopee cushion and trying to get it to work!

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15. This conversation: Me: “Des really understands everything we say, right?” Des: “Right.”

16. He no longer walks like a duck. It’s more like a robot. And he used to drag two things from his knees when he scooted. Now he shuffles around carrying something in each hand. It’s often two markers, two tin teacups, or a box of Alka-Seltzer and a beaded necklace. Sometimes it’s a love note.

17. He gets very slaphappy before bedtime. So does his sister. (turn down your speakers!)

18. He often eats like a horse, but can get very nit-picky in his highchair. However, if I hold him in my lap and give him a spoon or fork, he will eat bowls upon bowls of vegetable stew. And I’m talking sweet potatoes and kale. I had never even heard of kale until I was in my 20’s.

He is 18-months-old, which seems so big when you compare him to the newborn he was not too long ago. And yet, he is so very small, and we still have so many years to grow together.

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  1. Des is sooo adorable and cute!! Every moment is indeed priceless and even until now, I still get amazed of the things I learn from my son. It's amazing to see them grow and learn everyday. πŸ™‚

  2. I love this age. They're doing SO much more than 1-2 months ago.

    My toddler loves carrying two things at the same time too, especially food. You can't give him just one cracker. It has to be two, one in each hand, or the Universe isn't balanced (hey, it's like me, I have to chew food on both sides, not just one side of my mouth – idiosyncrasy tidbit for you right there).

    I love Des, he's awesome!

  3. Ohhhh, I love this post. So hard! Monkey is almost 20 months, and I can't believe how much she's changing every day. Her vocabulary has exploded in the last few weeks, and she's like a little parrot, repeating every new word she hears. Which means this mama needs to watch her mouth! And I know exactly what you mean about the full sentences that are a mix of real words and secret language. And #2. I die.

  4. Ah what a cutie!! Happy 18 month birthday to your boy! I love that you just have conversations with him and talk back, even if you don't know what they mean. I'm sure that's great for his development – I've heard that talking to kids like they are human beings is the best thing you can do for them!

    Also, when am I going to find out what was a truth and what was a lie?? I'm so curious!

    1. haha, I tweeted you! Couldn't leave you hanging! I think talking to kids (even babies) is highly important for their language development. You totally get it!

  5. Happy 18 months! I love the tribute of 18 things! He is so precious! After following your blog for most of 2013 and getting to know your family virtually, I'd love nothing more than one of those hugs on demand one day!

  6. I don't think that indecipherable language thing stops. Well, it hasn't at age 16 for Elise! The video of the head-pushing … classic little kid. When you're a big kid, that doesn't work so well.

    1. I know! I tried it last week and I got a little dizzy. My Yogi sister can do it with no problem. I guess I have to train for it if I need to keep up with Des and his insanity.

  7. He is such a cutie! Happy 18 months!!! I love it when they have little conversations with themselves. It's just so cute and I wish I could capture it on video. As soon as I turn on the recorder on my Iphone my daughter stops and runs away. Boo!

  8. Happy year and a half, Des! What a cutie. I have one child that still is very attached to her blanket – the very same one she's had since she was an infant. I sneak it in the laundry sometimes, but I wash it on gentle so it doesn't disintegrate.

    1. Scarlet never had a lovey..at least not one she cared about like this. I’m so happy we have FOUR. And sometimes I think about getting even more…while they’re still being made by the company.
      Although Scarlet has regressed a little and now claims that this frog blanket she got as a baby is her lovey.

  9. And what's so awesome is that it never stops. There are always new phases and stages. Heck, I wonder if my parents even have that with their five grown children.

  10. That makes sense! And I was talking about it with Rabia recently, but if you touch something with one hand, don't you ever need to touch it with the other hand? It's a little quirk, and not quite an obsession with me.

  11. Thank you! I hope you'll get to meet him in real life.

    I am kinda thrilled that the drooling will stop. It will, right? Scarlet never drooled so this is new to me.

  12. Those rainbow sunglasses have since broken..bummer! They were Scarlet's! Oops. I do love that we still have so much time. And I know it will probably go by fast, but there is something to be said about (sometimes) mindful parenting. Sometimes..I'm not perfect. There are a lot of good hugs in a day, though.

  13. Talk about needing to watch my mouth. I should tell you sometime about what Scarlet said about all of the other reindeer in the Rudolph movie. It wasn't nice, but it was totally spot-on and really in context!

  14. Thanks! I never like my iPhone photos because of the lack of control over settings, but it's often better to have my phone camera than nothing. That camera has seen some good stuff!

  15. I loved this post and seriously I couldn’t stop smiling at Des’s smiling face in all the photos and videos. You described exactly how I feel about both my girls. They so big from where they started, but still have so much growing to do (just hoping that it doesn’t go too fast). Happy 18 months to Des and those sunglasses are the best!! πŸ™‚

  16. Des is beyond adorable. Happy, happy 18 months to him and to your entire family. Number five got me a little teary. Priceless. As always, your photos! Stunning! Also, I didn't realize that he was a NICU baby. He really does look so calm and content in each photo. Adore.

    1. That photo was taken IN the NICU, which had to be snuck. He was in there for a week because my water was broken for over 24 hours and I had a fever during labor so he was at risk for infection. They put him on antibiotics for six days and poked and prodded him, but there was likely never anything wrong.

    1. Right? I needed you to see Des photos without his famous swoop hair. I will certainly make a “Who Farted” video? I don’t know why I don’t do it more. And usually they fall asleep the second they get in bed!

  17. He's so sweet! Both my kids walked later too. I was fine with it. Less worry, ha. Though Natalie rolled or scooted every dang where so I had to keep my eye on her.

    1. It's really funny! Sometimes he yells things in this real toughguy voice. I'm thinking, "Who IS this kid?" Other times he's humming the My Little Pony song!

  18. oh how I love DES!! He is the best!! My kid loves sunglasses too πŸ™‚ He also loves to stress on the word mom-meeeeeeee except lately he has been following after his brother saying "mom" like what? You are supposed to say thing at 14!! We have since stopped responding to "mom" and "dad" πŸ™‚ Thank you for all of these fun facts about Des, I feel like I know him so much better now. Can you imagine him reading this when he gets older?!

    1. Sometimes Scarlet calls me "Mom!" She saw it on TV! I always really thought I'd be Mama forever, but his Mommy is so cute! I really can't take it.

  19. Des is such a cutie – I love all the pictures and videos today!!!
    I didn’t know he had spent time in the NICU – Hunter spent a week in there, too.
    Happy half birthday to your super cute young man (not a man yet but…).

    1. I am copying and pasting to what I wrote to Kristi:
      He was in there for a week because my water was broken for over 24 hours and I had a fever during labor so he was at risk for infection. They put him on antibiotics for six days and poked and prodded him, but there was likely never anything wrong.
      All is well now, of course!

  20. What a sweet love! And I love hearing what other people's children call them… I am Mommy but my little one calls me Mama when she is upset πŸ™‚

    1. Oh, that’s funny! I was wondering what it would be like if my daughter called me “Mama” from years of habit, but my son called me “Mommy” just because he started to do it at 18 months and I was too amused to stop him. I guess the choice is still mostly mine!

    1. Oh, I know it! I was actually calmer with his older sister because of different birth circumstances. I wonder if a third baby will come just because I want that experience again, but smoother.

    1. I think you will! You just need to kneel down and say, “Des! Hugga me.” The “hugga” comes from Scarlet and Cassidy, but Des responds to it.

    1. Oh yes! I started my blog when Scarlet was 8 months, so I used to do the occasional updates. It used to be more for me and my lack of non-computer record keeping skills, but then it became a nice update for the family and friends.

    1. haha, but do you see the problem? Well I guess I didn't mention it..all of that was stuff taught to him by ME and his sister! Oops. So what is it with moms and farting?

  21. I thoroughly enjoyed this while I was up in the middle of the night nursing. How exciting, 18 months! And such cuties you’ve got there! While I do enjoy the newborn phase and in some ways I don’t want it to end, seeing these types of moments make me really look forward to seeing what Eve will be like as she gets older.

    1. I’m so glad you read this in the middle of the night! It’s entertaining. I didn’t enjoy my newborn phase with Des. I wish I had but I was too up in arms after the birth experience. However I feel like I was really present for every phase of his life, and I continue to be and our connection, friendship and love is growing. I consider that a reward of sorts for loving so much.

  22. I just realized I’ve had this post open on my computer all day and I never commented! I think Des’s cuteness distracted me. Happy half birthday to him! I love that he has conversations with himself and sings the theme song to My Little Pony. Huggas to you all!

  23. He is so cute! I just smiled in amusement thinking of JR on each video and photo. He is such a great talker! I love your attempt to sound like him in how you try to write how he says it. I can totally picture EO haha. Is it toddler get hyper time at bedtime or something? JR does the same thing. Only sometimes when he is over tired it will be whining and whimpering instead of happy squeals. πŸ™‚

    1. "EO" is so cute! He says it when he's handing something to you, but also when he wants you to hand something to him. And it can be something like y phone or wallet!

      I love the hyper bedtime thing because it's so funny and then they crash hard!

  24. I love this so much!! Happy 18 months to Des. It really is a big milestone.

    This whole post made me smile huge. There is so much love in your life and home. That is special.

  25. UGH! I’m having issues- my DA email didnt get a notification of your post & I always know when you post something!!! Slap hand to forehead… the madness!!! I promise, it’s not you my love- you know you are one of my dearest… argh. I LOVE this & want you to ship him to NC like asap… Jersey Girl & I will take turns, I promise, heck, how about y’all just ship all y’all here & make it a family affair!!! πŸ™‚ Love this post & you XO!!! ~A~

    1. Oh no!! Do you follow me on any feeds? Bloglovin seems to work well! Feedly too! Just know I post every 2-3 days so if you miss me…that’s where I am!
      Anyway, you always make your way here! Always. So loyal.

  26. This list is such a great idea. If I don't write things like this down, I forget most of them, or the memories swim together and get jumbled … which kid? which age? where?

    Is it easy to put videos on YouTube from an iPhone? I'm such a video novice. I have no idea where to even start.

    1. If you have an iPhone, it should be very easy! Mine has an option to share a video, and you can click to share it by email, text, Facebook, YouTube, etc. I choose the YouTube option and it happens in ten seconds!

      I often forget ages and stages and my memories swirl together, so this blog is really helping me know when my kids hit milestones!

  27. Thank you for giving us a glimpse of this awesome little dude. So many gems here about him. My oldest son had a lovey that was a girl too, and yes we have a spare now lol.

    One of my little twins is also taking his sweet ol' time with physical stuff, not yet crawling or sitting like his other brother and only now flipping over (which he loves to do). The mama in me is on alert, but knowing better, I feel like he'll get there in due time. I met so many moms whose kids didn't walk til 18 months too, and they just up and went at it from then on.

    Happy 18th (months!) to your little guy πŸ™‚

    1. It's so true! When they walk late, often they catch up faster than they would otherwise. My son learned to walk so fast, after he took those first few steps, that he's probably on par with what any 18-month-old is like now! He's even running a little. Oh boy – that part is challenging.

      I personally think it has nothing to do with intelligence, and everything to do with personality and interests.

  28. This post was so sweet! I love how you documented with pictures and video so you can remember exactly how adorable and squishy Des was at this age. 18 months is my favorite age because they are so sweet and cuddly at this stage!

  29. Such a great post, happy 18 months to Des! I’m grinning from ear to ear, admiring his unbelievable cuteness while remembering my own kids at this age…. thanks for sharing!!

    1. Thank you!! 18 months is a memorable age. I was just remembering Scarlet at 18 months. We took her to Florida! Little do my kids know, that is about to happen for them!

  30. This was absolutely the most precious post I’ve read! Babies don’t stay babies long, and I love how you’re capturing these moments with your children! Des is getting so big! I think I may start wearing sunglasses at night. If Des thinks its okay, then it must be, lol!

    1. Thank you!! I really l wanted to write something that would give/show a good idea of what living with Des is like. I'll look back on it fondly one day, I'm sure.

  31. Awe! What a sweet tribute! Yes, backups of lambies and such are a necessity. You just have to be careful not to get caught! I do love to respond to conversations that I'm really not sure of. Sometimes I'm scared of what I might have agreed to, though.

    Have fun this month! πŸ™‚

    1. Carla, I'm so insane that I don't even know if four are enough. And he doesn't really care that some are fresher and newer than others. While he's still this young, I should seriously buy ten of them and just alternate them out so he can "love" them all the same way.

      I'm nuts.

      And I probably agree to giving him a brand new car on a daily basis.

  32. Oh my gosh, so, so cute. Well of course, since we call this the "age of maximum cuteness" in our household. Doesn't everyone? πŸ˜‰

    I adore the little conversations they have with themselves. And the cuteness of his "lovey"…. oh so sweet.

    This age seriously makes me want to have more kids. But I'm not gonna. But gah, so precious! ENJOY!!

    1. If this age is he age of maximum cuteness, is it all downhill from here??
      haha, and I know what you mean. Sometimes I want a third baby. I may always feel that way, but it’s not in the cards for us right now.

  33. What a sweet post. I bet Des is going to be a tenderhearted charmer. I loved the Eo. My daughter would say, "Here da go!" at that age. To this day, sometimes we say that when we hand each other something.

  34. I LOVE these pictures as always, and I remember the FEW times I took my kids to work, it was a STRUGGLE to keep up with them! Thankfully, I had great co-workers that helped out! Now the IMPORTANT question…Can I sneak in your suitcases and go to Disney with you all?

  35. How did I miss this? I guess with all my packing getting ready for my trip I've missed out on so much! Des is such a sweetheart and Madison is going to be one lucky little girl. πŸ™‚ She was the early walker and late talker although now she's talking up a storm. Guess there was no need for me to be worried either. She still gets speech therapy but it's just for reinforcement. Give Des a big hug and kiss for us!

  36. You trained him to say me?

    Man that has to be a gem when you're out in a public place because usually the parent gets blamed. Well I blame the parents. Some of us can't hold it in. Fact.

    Make sure that lambie never gets lostie because oh dear lord…We left Chase's pillow in Niagara Falls and luckily the housekeeper kept it. They shipped it back to us. Very traumatic.

    He's a beautiful boy my friend. Keep trucking in sunglasses my friend. Sun never sets on the cool yo.

    1. That’s a great story! That the housekeeper was an angel. We actually have four Lambies that we switch out because we often have to wash them. Don’t tell Des! He’s seriously none the wiser, or else he just doesn’t care.

  37. Thank you! And I love this age so much. He is SO sweet. I imagine it'll change some, but right now he's just the goofiest, huggiest, cleverest little kid.

  38. My husband would love to hear that because the floors are so scuffed by the previous owners' dogs and we can't afford to get them polished..or whatever else you have to do to floors.

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