Oh my sweet little Hunter boy! This sure has been a month of adjustments for all of us. Overall I would say things have gone pretty well. Hunter is still my bright, funny, chatty, smart, first born son. It is so crazy for me to think that at this time last year we weren’t even expecting Everly. I know in my mind I was already celebrating making it through the first year as a parent and had no clue that a year later I would have TWO children!
Going from one to two children has been a big change and as I mentioned in Everly’s post we still haven’t found that “new normal” but we are getting there. One of the things that is hardest on me (and I’m sure on Hunter) is I can not give Hunter my full attention any more. I try SO hard on the days I am home with both children to give him my full attention when Everly is napping but sometimes it feel like I barely get to play with him or snuggle him. Brian and I have also been tag teaming the bath/bedtime routine. If Everly is content (sleeping) Brian holds her (so she doesn’t wake up!) and I take care of Hunter. Otherwise all I get is a quick kiss good night. I am so glad that in the months leading up to Everly’s birth that I took the time to really appreciate my time with him.
As a result of this Hunter has become very attached to his daddy. They always had a good relationship but now even more so! In the weeks after Everly’s birth when Brian was also on leave he took over the majority of Hunter duties. He came up with all sorts of fun activities to do, like visit daddy’s den and look at all the “dead things.” Hunter asks every day (several times a day) if he can “see deer horns.” Brian has also taught him the names of different fish he has mounted. It about cracked me up when I was giving Hunter his bath and he told me he was fishing for perch, and then bass.
The newest set of “deer horns.”
I think he is getting more and more attached to his baby sister. The first time I took him to daycare I got him in the car first and he got very upset that Everly was not with us (she was in our house in the car seat and then I went to get her). If he hears her crying after a nap he says, “Baby Everly awake! Let’s go!” and then proceeds to rush off towards our room. He then bursts through the door and says, “Hi Everly!” He loves to give her “gentle kisses.” And if he’s playing with a truck and Everly is around he says, “No trucks on baby!” I also let him pick out her outfit for the day and sometimes even helps me give her a bath.
We are still working on being gentle with baby and I have had to give Hunter his first time out (and several after that) for not listening when I asked him to be gentle with Everly. I know that even if we had not had another child we would be entering some new territory as far as behavior goes. He is getting more and more independent every day and I know that it is up to us to teach him right from wrong to not only keep him safe but others too.
For the most part he doesn’t seem to mind when I am spending time with Everly and I know that he can play independently but the minute I sit down to nurse her he wants to be by me. I try to situate myself so I can read to him while nursing but it isn’t always the most peaceful or comfortable experience. It seems to make him happy!
As always sleep has been an issue. There was VERY early wake ups right after Everly was born and his naps are always hit or miss. I definitely don’t think that he is done taking naps because he is clearly so tired if he doesn’t get one. He just has a really hard time settling down during the day. He just can’t shut his brain off. If he doesn’t nap he gets so frustrated and upset by the little things. We always put him to bed early if he hasn’t had a nap and he passes right out, sometimes before we even get him in his crib. It pains me to see him this tired but I don’t really know what else to do.
He is so so so very smart! He talks from the moment he gets up to the moment he goes to sleep and I think I have even heard him talking in his sleep! His mind is like a steel trap! We had a book from the library that based on the children’s song, “One two buckle my shoe.” If we say the numbers (i.e. One, two) Hunter will complete the sentence. He can count to twenty, identify almost all his colors, and know a TON of shapes. He can even identify an octagon! I am amazed at how much he learns every day. No wonder he can’t sleep!
He is still walking like a champ. I wouldn’t say he is graceful or coordinated by any means but he is walking. He also is climbing on our sofas now which is something he didn’t do before.
Christmas this year was a whirlwind! We definitely did not put has much time and effort into it as last year due to the new baby. I hope Hunter forgives us! I could tell that this year he got more into the whole present opening thing but for the most part he didn’t seem to notice that it was any different than a normal day. He just got to see his cousins, aunts and uncles, and grandparents. Plus he got lots of new toys!
Still not a fan of Santa!
Or playing in the snow!
But he loves Christmas cookies!
We did take him to experience Bethlehem (when we weren’t playing the Holy Family) and he LOVED the live animal and talked about how he got to pet a sheep for days after. Can’t wait to take him to a zoo this summer! When he saw the “baby Jesus” he looked over at Everly (who I was carrying at the time) then at the baby and proclaimed, “A different one!” It was too funny!
I look forward to continuing to watch him grow in his role as big brother and see how his unique personality shines through everyday! He’ll always be the baby that made me a mom!