Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Jonah - Month 6

Happy Half Birthday Jonah!

Oh my! Where has the time gone?...

I can hardly believe Jonah is 6 months old. I know that I say that each and every month but I truly can't believe that he is 1/2 way to being a 1 year old! So many things changed this month....

At Jonah's 6 month vaccination visit he weighed 19lbs 12 oz (16lbs 15oz at 4 month visit) and was 27 inches long (25 inches long at 4 month visit). Overall, he grew nearly 3lbs and 2 inches in just 2 months! He's in the 90th percentile for weight and 75th percentile for height. My little Chunky Monkey is now wearing 9-12 month clothing depending on the brand.

The biggest change in the last month is that Jonah can now sit up by himself and without the assistance of the Bumbo seat. Frankly, his legs are beginning to get to fat and chunky and tend get squished in the Bumbo seat. The first couple of days of him sitting by himself he was wobbly and a bit unsteady. He face planted a few times and even fell back until he got his balance in check. Stella said "mommy Jojo is like Humpty Dumpty."

Not only does Jonah love to play and splash in the tub (see above photo), he now loves playing and splashing in the pool. He started "Baby and Me" swim lessons earlier this month and loves to play and splash in the pool. The few times we've gone, Todd has gone into the pool with him. Mommy is not ready to be in a swim suit quite yet.

We've also brought out a lot of Jonah's toys too. Kind of like most kids at Christmas, Jonah was initially interested in the boxes and the packaging that most of the toys came in but once he realized that many of the toys made noise and lit up, it became a whole new ball game. Not only did his balance improve this month but so did his grasp. He can hold on to stuff really well and of course his first instinct is to put EVERYTHING in his mouth.

Jonah has also expanded his vocabulary too quite a bit this past month. He is a non-stop "chatty cathy"; he is constantly babbling and as of late some of his favorite phrases are "da da da",  "ba ba ba" and "ga ga ga." He's only said "ma ma" a handful of times and none of his babbles as yet are intentional (as to signify a specific person or object like his bottle).

Jonah is now very much aware of his surroundings and sometimes fusses a little when I drop him off at daycare. If you look at him and smile, he will smile back at you unless of course you are Dr. Eberhart (at Jonah's 6 month visit he refused to smile at Dr. Eberhart but would smile at all the nurses- typical ladies man). He even chuckles and giggles now if you tickle him or make funny faces or noises at him. It is really quite adorable and hysterical if I do say so myself.

Sadly, Jonah is also beginning to exhibit small signs of stranger anxiety. He is becoming very observant and apparently beginning to decipher people he knows and doesn't.

Exciting  news- Jonah is officially now off of the expensive hypoallergenic formula, Nutramigen. He is now on the Gerber Gentle Plus formula. I can't say that I miss paying $33 for a 19oz formula can. Now I pay $19.99 (or $14.99 whenever I have a Gerber $5 off coupon) for a 24oz can. He's taken to the new formula quite well. With the exception of some nasty gas the first few days, he's 100% acclimated to it. Oh and did I mention that it also smells so much better than the expensive stuff.  Jonah's also expanded his pallet. He's now eating 1 fruit as well as 1 vegetable per day and some of his favorites flavors so far are pears, applesauce, bananas, sweet potatoes and carrots. Squash, green beans and sweet peas are his least favorite choices but all growing kids need their green veggies...

What I have missed over the past 6 months is 6 straight hours of sleep. Unlike Stella, Jonah is NOT a great sleeper. Though he loves to sleep on his belly like she did, he doesn't sleep for more than 5-6 hours. He loves to snuggle for sure; I am of the belief that he deliberately will fuss just so we will bring him into our bed.

I cannot believe that Jonah is finally 6 months old and he has crossed so many milestones over the past 6 months . I look forward to many many more and even celebrating his 1st Birthday in the near future.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

If you've kept up with my blog you know that I continually say (and cannot say enough), how LUCKY and BLESSED I am to have these 2 beautiful miracles as a part of my life. I look at them each day and I ask what have I done to deserve them. They continually remind me how precious, innocent and miraculous life is and how each day we need to seize the moment!

These 2 little leprechauns (blonde no less) are such a joy and I am definitely feeling like the luckiest person in the world, especially today!

Wishing you love, luck and leprechauns from our house to yours!


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Aunt Sandy, Mamoose & Papaw come to visit

Today we received a visit from some much missed family. Aunt Sandy (Todd's moms sister) and Mamoose & Papaw (Todd's maternal grandparents, Stella and Jonah's great grandparents) came over to visit. They hadn't seen the kids since Christmas and were surprised to see how big Jonah had grown.

Jonah was a well behaved little boy and greeted them with big smiles. Aunt Sandy held Jonah and they played Patty Cake and he loved it! Aunt Sandy said that she keeps track of Jonah and all of his doings and milestones on facebook and that his pictures are all so cute that she sometimes just wants to kiss them. Luckily she didn't need to kiss his picture today and was able to get some real time Jonah time and kiss on him in person.

Aunt Sandy brought Mamoose and Papaw along to visit too. Papaw had a great time playing with Jonah and Jonah loved playing with him too. They exchanged smiles and grins and was quite possibly the cutest exchange of the visit.

Finally it was Mamoose's turn to get her Jonah fix in. She couldn't believe how big he had grown since she last saw him at Christmas.  She enjoyed holding him and got a kick out of how much he was smiling and how well behaved he was. She truly enjoyed him and couldn't believe how much of a "wiggle worm" he was.

I absolutely loved their visit today! It made me realize how lucky and blessed Todd is that until recently he had all of his grandparents still living and that they all played an active and influential role in his life.  I've always been jealous that Todd was so blessed to have grown up surrounded by his extended family and grandparents. Unfortunately, my sister and I didn't get to experience growing up close to our grandparents and some of our extended family like aunts and uncles because they lived in Egypt and we only saw them the few times they visited from Egypt or the few times we made the trek to Egypt. In fact, by the time I was 15 (that means my sister was only 5 years old) all of our grandparents had passed away. However, I'm lucky to have some of the fondest memories of my Teta Stella (maternal grandmother), whom my daughter Stella is named after, because she lived with us for several years during my childhood before she passed away. Teta Stella's memories have left such an imprint on my life. It was because of her that I learned to speak Arabic and I know for a fact that had she not lived with us that I wouldn't understand Arabic and speak it as well as I do. Sometimes the smallest things remind me of her. I remember her cute little laugh, her adorable smile, how much she loved to drink warm milk before bed and how sometimes she would eat a banana without putting her dentures in. These cherished memories will be ones that I keep forever and share with the kids.

Unlike my sister and I, Stella and Jonah are so lucky to have all of their grandparents and most of their great grandparents still alive and that they all live fairly close by. They will be able to experience things that my sister and I never did but that Todd and his siblings did like them attending important events in their life (i.e. school activities, sporting events, graduations and weddings).  Although Stella and Jonah are still very young, I hope that one day they will appreciate and realize how lucky they are that their grandparents, great grandparents and extended family were an influential part of their lives. 

Even now, I can see some of the imprints and influence that people like their Teta and Gido have begun to leave on them. Stella already loves Egyptian food and understand some Arabic. Teta and Gido speak to them in Arabic and they know Arabic hymns they hear and sing in church. I always encourage my parents to speak to them in Arabic as that's how I learned it when my Teta lived with us when I was so young. I can only hope that they will appreciate it when they grow older and realize how lucky they are and will pass down the same to their children and grandchildren.

So on a day like today when we get to visit with loved ones, I am reminded how important family is and how blessed we are!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Happy Birthday Mikey!

Can you believe that Mike is 25 already? Oh wait this is not the month by month Jonah blog. LOL

It was Mikey's birthday was this past weekend! My sister Sarah (Mikey's beloved wife) had an entire weekend of festivities planned with friends, family, Mikey's favorite foods and activities and such! You can read all about it in her Mike's Birthday Extravaganza blog. Saturday evening we packed the kids up and trucked all the way (less than 1 mile) down to Mike and Sarah's house for an evening of fun!

While at their house, Auntie Sissy had her patty cake time with Mr. Jonah. As you can see, his favorite part is at the end when you "throw it in the pan!" I'm so lucky that my sister lives so close by and that she is an important part of Stella and Jonah's lives. She is one of the few other people that love my kids as if they were her own. I am honored that she is their Godmother!

Sarah made a lasagna dinner and we sang "Happy Birthday" to Mike and we even had yummy cake too! My sister found a little cake place called Cake, Hope and Love that was made a red velvet cake that was covered in fondant and  was decorated with a chcaricature of Mike on it. It was pretty awesome, I must say. It was no Ashley's Pastry Shop cake but it was definitely a close competitor! :) As you can see we are not in the least bit loyal to Ashley's. They've made almost every important celebration cakes for our family, from graduation cakes to shower cakes to wedding cakes and now even our kids birthday cakes!

Mikey has recently been taking piano lessons so for his birthday my sister bought him a Yamaha GDX640 Portable Grand Piano. Needless to say he absolutley LOVED it and he played around on it and even played several songs for us while we were there! He's so talented artistically, it doesn't surprise me in the least that he's musical too.

My favorite part of Saturday evening was watching Mikey playing with Jonah and beat boxing to him. As you know, Mike is Jonah's Godfather and they share a unique and special bond that even makes Teta a little jealous (if you can even begin to fathom that). Mike loves JoJo so much and vice versa. Jonah and Mikey Skype a few times a throughout the week and Jonah always smiles at Mikey even if its just through the computer on Skype.

Then, Sunday evening we went to Carver's with the whole family. It was a lot of fun and yummy no less. Not only was the food delicious, the company wasn't too shabby either. Once again, Teta was jealous that Jonah was smiling at Gido and Mike and not her; this was definitely the highlight of the evening.

Nothing makes me happier then big family dinners. It seems lately that everyones schedules with work, school, travel and extracurricular activities have been crazy and so these dinners are always a good time to catch up and decide on our annual family vacation. We used to have Sunday dinners with my family every Sunday but again because everyones schedules have been crazy we haven't had them in quite some time. Which reminds me, I'll be calling Teta now and getting her back on the wagon so that we can resume our Sunday dinner rituals. I'll also be requesting (and by requesting I mean demanding) my favorite dishes while I'm at it.

During dinner we discussed where we wanted to take our annual family vacation over the week of Thanksgiving. Thankfully Teta doesn't have to work during the Thanksgiving holiday this year so we're planning on going on a family vacation. Also, Gido turns 70 in early December, so this trip will also serve as his celebration too. Can you believe that my adorable dad/Gido is going to be 70??? Surely he doesn't look a day older than 30! Right? ok maybe not 30, but not a day older than 40!

I am excited for this vacation! The last vacation we took was this past summer to Hilton Head Island while I was 6+ months pregnant with Jonah. Additionally as many of you know, the holidays are typically very stressful for me; so nothing makes me happier than to get out of town around the holidays. Consensus is that we're either going on a 1 week Disney Cruise (Eastern Caribbean) or heading to Orlando for a week. Disney World is always fun and "it's where dreams come true." And any place we go the weather will be much warmer than the weather in Ohio. As always, I'll be doing the research and leg work  to see what kind of deals are out there and what seems to make the most sense monetarily. Stay tuned and I'll keep you posted as to where we'll be going...

No family get together would be complete without "double trouble" aka Stella and Sophie.

Overall it was a wonderful weekend, and we were so excited to be a part of Mikey's 25th Birthday celebration. Here's to many more blessed years Mikey, we love you!!