As you laid in my arms this morning drinking a 2:00am bottle, I couldn't help but smile. It's not often I see your beautiful face during the night anymore - you've turned into a fantastic sleeper! - so it's almost like you planned to wake up in the early hours of your first birthday so we could be together.
One year ago today at 12:34am, Dad and I were blessed with you as our wonderful son. I'll admit I was nervous about being a boy mom and being the mother of two little children, but loving you has come easy. You are the happiest, smiliest baby I've ever met. I marvel at your blond, wavy hair and gorgeous steel blue eyes. I'm sentimental the first year of your life is already behind us, and thankful for each wonderful memory we've shared thus far.
At 12 months old, you are blossoming in every way. You're crawling at lightning speeds now (that didn't take long!), pulling up onto your knees easily and standing tall with support from low-profile items like the edge of the bathtub and your PBK Anywhere Chair. You're clapping and playing pat-a-cake and peek-a-boo. You love to point at objects you see in a room and at family photographs hanging in our upstairs hallway. Last night, I decorated the living room with your birthday decorations and the minute you saw them you reached up and pointed with a big smile on your face.
This month you uttered your first word, "uh-oh." I thought your first word might have been "hi" but - no - "uh-oh" is most definitely your first word. You use it repeatedly in the correct context, like when you purposefully drop your sippy cup off your high chair tray and say, "Uh-oh!" Other words I *think* you're starting to say are "mama" and "dada," "ta" for Tory and "cheese" when I take your picture. You often mutter "ma ma ma ma" when you're crying out for me, but I'm not sure if it's just sounds and by coincidence. A few weekends ago at the cabin, you stood at the top of the stairs (behind the rail and baby gate) and yelled, "da! da! da!" to Daddy down below on the middle-level. And, even though I know it's not a real word yet, you call Tory "ta." When you hear her in another room of the house you'll often shout, "Ta!" And finally, "cheese" isn't a true word yet, but more like the phonic sound and tone in your voice when I ask you to pose for a photograph. You've also started to make an "arf" sound when asked what dogs say.
Sleep is the shining star of your 12th month. Just like Tory at this age, things seemed to click into place around one year of age, and you're finally sleeping all night, every night. You typically go to bed around 7:00pm or 7:30pm and wake for the day around 7:00am or 7:30am. Naps vary based on the day and our schedule, and you're so go-with-the-flow with it all. On Mondays/Wednesdays, you typically take two naps (9:30am - 11:00am / 1:30pm - 3:30pm) and on Tuesdays/Thursdays (due to Tory's preschool class), you take one long nap from 12:30pm - 4:30pm. My mom always told me babies are suppose to take long naps in the afternoon but until you, little buddy, I never knew it was a reality. Those quiet afternoons are GLORIOUS and you wake up so happy and rested.
Another easy-breezy area of babyhood for you is teething. You seem to be one of those lucky babies who's teeth magically appear in their mouths. This month, you gained your 5th and 6th teeth (upper and lower lateral incisors) and the 7th tooth (second upper lateral incisor) is close behind. I love seeing those pearly whites appear in photos. It's hard to miss them with your big, beautiful grin.
This month, you added a new state to your Places I've Been book when we traveled to Kentucky to visit friends. You are a bit of a handful on plane rides right now because of your newfound mobility. I'm looking forward to the day you can run on two feet vs. acting as a human vacuum, eating every piece of lint and crumb on the floor. Speaking of putting things in your mouth, another disgusting habit of yours lately is eating Chloe's dog food. You are a like a moth to a flame when it comes to her food and water bowls. Aden Bear, dog food isn't for people!
We also celebrated Halloween this past month. You were a lion cub, and were an adorable one at that. We visited Nana and Papa in Nebraska that week and trick-or-treated with your cousins Brooke and Neeley. It was fun being surrounded by family and sharing in so many fall traditions.
Some of your favorite things this month are playing with balls, reading books, off-limits electronics (like my cell phone!), remote controls, taking baths and, of course, your treasured blue blanket. There aren't many things you dislike, but changing clothes and wearing a winter coat is one of them.
One year old! It's hard to believe you've been in our lives so long. We love you so much, Aden. Here's to another great year ahead.