Noah never changed out of his pajamas yesterday. Neither did his mother (oops). If our defense, it was the first chilly day of autumn, and nothing sounded better than staying in our cozy sweats (or footie pajamas, in Noah's case) all day.
We're having a bit of a napping crisis right now in the Nielson household. Noah can't decide if he still wants to take two naps or if he is ready to transition to one. He's never been a great napper, but for the last couple of weeks, it's really been all over the place. Sometimes he takes a decent morning nap but then refuses to nap in the afternoon, so he is very cranky by bedtime. Sometimes he only takes a fifteen-minute nap in the morning, so I think he will take a good nap later, but then he only sleeps fifteen minutes in the afternoon as well. This chaotic schedule has resulted in lots of screaming on his part. I am happy to say that, overall, this has not resulted in much screaming on his mother's part. It is really rewarding to notice that I am developing more patience as a mother and letting go of the need to control everything. Whereas his lack of napping used to make me crazy--and, okay, sometimes it still does--for the most part, I am now able to say, "Oh well, it is what it is." He'll get through his nap crisis eventually.
Yesterday was one of the tough nap days, and he was extremely fussy (I think he must be getting teeth too), so we decided to go for a walk with a friend. When we got home and were heading into the apartment, I looked back at him toddling along in his footie jammies, an oversized hoodie zipped over them, a soggy Ritz cracker in his hand and all over his face. The yellow trees were bright behind him, and the moment was just too perfect to ignore. I ran inside and grabbed my camera, wiped the cracker off his face (I probably should've left it there to immortalize what our life is really like), and followed him around snapping photos as he played to his heart's content.
I felt so happy as I watched him discovering autumn leaves for the first time. I felt so grateful that I get to be home with him to share these spontaneous moments of discovery. Being a stay-at-home mom hasn't been easy for me, but all I could think as I watched him gleefully crunch the leaves that had gathered in the gutter was, "There is no where I would rather be than right here at this moment." I know how fortunate I am to have the opportunity to stay home with my wild little man.
Noah is at such a fun age right now. He is 14-months old, and I think the past month has been my favorite yet (I'm sure I've said that before and will say it again). He is still a baby but so interactive. He dances, he is starting to understand me when I talk to him, and he is saying simple words. His favorite right now is "Hot!" and he says it with a whispered, prolonged "h" sound, which is really funny. He thinks it refers to anything that he isn't supposed to touch. He knows that the oven is hot, but he also thinks the toilet is hot and Mama's earrings are hot. He will put his hands up to my ears and whisper, "No. Hhhhot!" That will usually keep him from pulling them for at least a few seconds, but then he just can't resist the urge any longer and gives them a good yank. Ouch.
When I sing him "Pop Goes the Weasel," if I pause at the right moment, he will say the "Pop!" right on cue. He loves books and is willing to sit in my lap and snuggle if I just keep reading him book after book. His favorite is Little Blue Truck, and he will make the "Hoooonk!" of the mean dump truck right before I turn to that page. I am blown away by all that he is remembering and comprehending.
He walks around the apartment opening all of the doors now. I can't believe he is tall enough to open doors on his own. And his favorite toy to drag around is the snow scraper that we usually keep in the trunk of our car. I brought it inside one day because I was vacuuming out the car, and Noah thinks it is just the greatest toy ever. I have no idea how a snow scraper can be so entertaining, but I am grateful that he is so easily amused.
When we go for walks outside, I will sometimes put the canopy down so the sun or rain doesn't get in his eyes, and he will stick his chubby little hand through the opening in the stroller and hold it out, like, "Is anyone out there? Will you please hold my hand?" Oh my gosh, the cuteness just kills me.
And one of my favorite things that he is doing right now is sniffing flowers. If he ever spots a flower, be it fake or real, he wants to sniff it. He even carries around our paper topiary all day long, trying to smell it.
I love this little boy with a love I didn't even know was possible before I became his mom. I'm so glad I have a little buddy to hang out with in my pajamas all day. (Did you notice that in all of the photos above, he is either wearing PJs or just a diaper? Mom of the Year, right here!)
And now he is screaming in the other room (nap was only ten minutes today), so I am going to go grab him. Yes, I think it's definitely time for Mom to make an executive decision and adjust our schedule to one nap. It's sad that he is growing up--
But it is so, so fun to be a part of it.