First Words & Favorite Milestones

Harper’s first word was mama, Eloise’s first word was dada. One of the most memorable milestones are those first words, right along with the first smile, the first laugh & taking the first steps. Milestones are a funny thing, they are so bittersweet & once they happen, it feels like they are old habits. Eloise is right in the word explosion stage, saying tons of new words every day & I can honestly say, it is my very favorite. We love to reminisce about Harper’s first words, all of the silly gibberish that she said when she was one, and right in front of our very eyes, Eloise is doing all of the same things. She points to the cup that I use every day when it is in the dishwasher and says “mama coffee,” asks Harper for “sissy, kiss?” and screams “caaaaayyyyy!” when she sees Claire first thing every morning. The only thing better than your first child saying their first words, is your second child saying theirs, because now you get to witness conversations between siblings, which is quite possibly the sweetest thing in existence. When Harper asks Eloise if she wants to share blankets and she yells back “ash!” (which means yes, but sounds like ass). These are the days, you guys.

 And then there is sweet little three month old Claire with her big smiles & first giggles. One of the best milestones! More than anything, this is their very first sign of reciprocation & communication. As a parent, you are giving your all to this tiny baby who can not show you any form of appreciation or show their love in return. That first smile is a little sigh of relief & a glimmer of excitement, from that moment on, you know that you are able to make your baby happy. It’s their own little way of saying I love you too, and all these sleepless nights are going to be worth it!
 

But then there are those underrated milestones that we just don’t quite celebrate enough.

Feeding themselves. All of a sudden you have an extra hour in your day & are able to eat a hot meal (maybe) of your own. Except, that extra hour of your day that you used to spend feeding, is now replaced by cleaning, but, baby steps! enough. And as a parent, it is all about the small victories.

Potty training. This is huge, potty training is a big hurdle & a major accomplishment. No more diapers! No more getting karate kicked in the neck when trying to change them and fifty dollars or more a month to be reallocated to more exciting things (like wine). Bonus points for the “I wipe my own ass!” milestone, whenever that may be.

Making funny faces on command. Just like Harper’s fake laugh she used to do, it’s kind of the best when you can get them to actually do it when you tell them to. They’ll definitely never pick up their toys or stop throwing their food, but if they know they can make you laugh? Chances are you can get a funny face.

Real communication. The kind where they can tell you if they pooped their pants or pinched their finger instead of just crying/whining/pointing while you scramble to figure out what is wrong with them. I remember being shocked when Harper was able to tell me that her teeth hurt when her two year molars were coming in. The downside of this is, you really never know what is going to come out of their mouths. A few weeks ago we were out with friends at an outdoor mall & walked past some vending machines, Harper pointed & chimed in “hey guys, did you want to get a beer or somethin?”

Dressing themselves. It might look like this, but it is all sorts of crazy wonderful to have your kids pick out their own clothes & establish their own sense of style. Even if that means they wear Halloween costumes on just your average weekday afternoon.

Buckling their own carseat. Because sometimes you just have to set your baby down for a second so you can climb in the car to buckle everyone else.

With kids, every single day is filled with victories & failures, and it is up to us to decide which ones we are going to dwell on. So here’s to celebrating the wins & embracing all of the milestones, big or small. Because every time Harper buckles her own carseat, I truly feel like I have succeeded as a parent.

But then again, I clearly set my baby in a laundry basket in the van, so maybe I have not. πŸ˜‰

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  1. I absolutely love this post. You took the words right out of my mouth. We are going through the same thing in my household. Being a parent is the hardest, most challenging, and most rewarding gift that I could have every received. Those little milestones are the things that I live for and on the days that I feel like I am failing, they are my reminder that I am succeeding. Keep up the great work!!!

  2. I love your posts so much! They make me smile on days when my kiddos have worn me down and remind me to enjoy every temper-tantrum and no nap day. Thanks!

  3. LOVE this post!! These sweet/funny mommy type posts are my favorite. That picture of Claire in the basket at the end made me laugh out loud. I think we have all done something like that, haha! Can't wait to see your Halloween costumes!! How is all the house/moving stuff going? πŸ™‚

  4. all of those little moments are so sweet, and make every tantrum and sleepless night [mostly] worth it! Personally I love that you stuck the baby in a laundry basket..betting she survived and turns out just fine πŸ˜‰

  5. Love, love, love this post!
    I wanted to ask you about another kind-of milestone-the transition to the big girl bed! We are pregnant with our second and our first will only be 1.5 when he/she is born. I don't know anyone else with babies this close in age, but thought this may be the age difference between Eloise and Claire. We are debating either getting another crib or a big girl bed – I just don't know what would be best! Any advice would help πŸ™‚
    β™‘Milena

  6. Haha! πŸ˜‚… "reallocated to more exciting things (like wine)". Looking forward to potty training my two yr old next month! πŸ’°πŸ·πŸ·πŸ·πŸ·πŸ·πŸ·πŸ·

  7. Oh my gosh that picture of Claire is priceless! I have totally done that, creative ways to free your hands for a split second to help your oldest (who is still young) I loved reading this. It brought me to tears reminiscing the milestones my children have reached. Thank you for sharing!

  8. Thank you so much for this post, Jessica. My husband and I are starting to try for baby #2 and I'm a bit scared; we had a rough newborn phase with my now almost 2 year old daughter and I'm terrified to go through that again. But this post reminds me that it's ALL WORTH IT! -NG

  9. Awww I loved this post!!!! So true! Lately I am just obsessed with my girls (3 and 2!) and cannot get enough of them. They sure drive me crazy, but they are what life is all about! I have to ask – do you two want more or do you think you are done?? We are debating a third, but a part of me wants four (husband not so much, haha). I just love this stage of life and it goes by so quickly. I envision a big family with tons of grand kids and big holiday dinners around our farmhouse table. Again, it's what life is all about!!

    Cheers to a good weekend!

    -Sarah http://www.thefrugalmillionaireblog.com

  10. Aw I LOVED this post Jessica!

    You are so right, those small milestones are usually the most victorious ones. I feel that way especially about my 1-year-old feeding herself these days. It's a hot mess and a half, but it is still lovely to be able to actually eat sitting beside her and get to enjoy my own meal. Even if it means spending 30 minutes post meal cleaning everything up…I'm still enjoying this stage πŸ™‚

    Have a great weekend with your sweet little girls!

    Christina

  11. Love this, and of course having the girls in the same season as H and E I'm right in the thick of the same accomplishments. So thankful when A will buckle her straps so I can just pull them tight while I chase K around the K demanding she get in her seat and she thinks it's a game of tag. All my cups are "mama caw-fee" and one of my favorites of K's is "AWK" for yuck. dirty diaper? "AWK!" the potty? "AWK" spills on the table "MESS!! MESS!!" πŸ™‚

  12. I love milestones and count them all. It is even more special the more children you have and watching how they interact and show love for their siblings. My favourite age is the word explosion stage as you put it. Especially when they parrot and copy what you say!

  13. OH MAN do I feel you. I only have two but that buckling their own carseat thing is a dream, also just being able to climb in by themselves! I cant wait to get a van. I fully YEARN.

    My 21 month old says "die" for cry so it's always "baby dying. Die! Die!" At other babies in the grocery store.

    Love this post. I check your blog obsessively because the age differences are pretty close to my girls so it's the only one that gives me an accurate glimpse into what it would be like with three. Have to convince my husband though. πŸ˜‰

  14. Conversations are one of my favorite parts of having twins! My twins are about four months younger than Harper, and our baby is Eloise's age. It's crazy to hear the twins have real, complicated conversations in the backseat, and even crazier to hear them talk to the baby and have him respond. (Our yes is "esh" very similar to "ash"). πŸ˜€

  15. One of my favorite posts to date. Love watching the milestones happen with my little man knowing that everyday is better than the last. My son will totally be asking who wants beers since he already knows how to open the wine fridge like a pro #parentingwin

  16. My girls are 21 months apart. At 18 months, I decided to transition my oldest into a bed. I left the crib in the room in case she really freaked out. Which, that only happened a few times. I made the bed a fun place to be. Read stories, played games, so that way she felt comfortable there. Start with naps and then transition to night. For me, it took about 2 weeks before she was okay with the bed. I think starting her so young made it easy! I hope this helps you! GOOD LUCK!!!

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