Sunday, February 16, 2014

Our First Month with Charlton!

IMG_7621Charlton2Wks2013 IMG_7362Charlton2Wks2013 IMG_7363Charlton2Wks2013 IMG_7634Charlton2Wks2013 IMG_7588Charlton2Wks2013 IMG_9662Charlton4Wks2013 IMG_9651Charlton4Wks2013 IMG_7647Charlton2Wks2013 IMG_8415CharltonWk32013 IMG_9763Charlton4Wks2013BW IMG_9758Charlton4Wks2013 IMG_9756Charlton4Wks2013 IMG_9671Charlton4Wks2013 IMG_0008CharltonWk4 IMG_0005CharltonWk42013 IMG_0223CharltonWk42013 Goodness, I feel like with the arrival of each new child in our family, we experience more love than we thought possible. And it's not just love for the baby... I feel like my love for my entire family somehow grows. And the further I get into motherhood, the more I appreciate and enjoy the little things. When Charlton cries and I'm unable to get things done, it doesn't really bother me because I know now better than ever, sweet babyhood is gone in a flash. What I'm experiencing right now is so fleeting and beautiful and definitely worth cherishing. So many things can wait. I just want to hold him and play with as much as I possibly can. Watching and enjoying my kids has never felt more fulfilling and productive.

Charlton is such a blessing in every way. To watch Isabella dote on him as if he was her very own baby is just amazing to me. I don't think I was ever like that with my baby brothers and sisters (sorry, siblings!), and so it's all the more impressive and endearing to me. She loves Charlton so very much, and when she does things like sing him to sleep in her arms, I pretty much melt. The other day I ran next door to pick up Juliette from the neighbor's house and left Charlton with her. I only intended to be gone a second, but Terrilee and I got chatting and I was gone for 10 minutes or so. I worried that Charlton would be crying when I returned, but things were so under control. He was flapping his arms and kicking his legs like he does when he's the happiest. And Isabella had even changed his (stinky!) diaper. It was so cute how she propped his head up on a little pillow and got the changing mat out and everything. What a sweet sight. Her help with him has been heaven sent, and it's all the sweeter that she genuinely loves to play and take care of him.

Liam is equally adorable with him, and I can't help but chuckle at the difference between the way girls and boys calm a crying baby. My girls stroke his cheeks and kiss and coo to calm him during fussy spells. Liam will sit next to him on the couch (not touching him), and rock back and forth in a ball with his finger at his mouth, saying "shhhhh," "shhhhhh" over and over again. It cracks me up! When Charlton is in a more cheerful mood, Liam loves to try to get him to hold little toy cars, or give him crazy bouncy rides in his bouncer. I'm shocked, but Charlton is usually all smiles when he does this. It gives me a headache just to watch it. Liam is also really interested in teaching him all he needs to know about walking and reading and pretty much anything and everything. He's definitely ready to take him under his big brother wing and teach him all kinds of stuff, and it's so cute.

Juliette smothers Charlton with love. I feel bad because I'm usually having to stop her because it's a little too rough, and she seems to pick the worst times to love on him, like when I'm nursing him or he's sleeping. She's not very good at controlling herself when it comes to touching him aka practically laying on top of him, and I can't blame her. Not a day goes by that she doesn't tell me how "tute" he is. "He's the tootest baby, Mommy" she says.

As for Charlton, he loves to be held. He is probably the fussiest of my babies, but it seems like he's growing out of it. I think it was just gas and digestion issues at first, and now I'm thinking he might have a sensitivity to dairy or my ridiculous amount of chocolate intake. I really need to control myself! And honestly, he's really not all that fussy. I love how much I've gotten to know him and read his needs. I know his hungry cry and his "I'm tired" cry and his "I've got gas" cry. It's amazing to me the communication that goes on between us without a word from him. He is so expressive and full of personality already.

He is also very smiley. His first smiles came when I was holding and bouncing him. He loves that. He also loves to eat and suck on his thumb. He's slept through the night a handful of times, and even when he doesn't sleep through the night, night times are pretty breezy. He just eats and goes right back to sleep, often on my's my favorite. I love snuggling with him. He loves his baths, and I get the best expressions out of him when he's in the tub. I love locking eyes with him. I find myself chocked up all the time because the love I have for him is just so overwhelming and full. I really, really love my life because I'm a mother. It just doesn't get any better than this.

Anyway, while these pictures are from his first month of life,  I've delved into what he's been up to passed the four-week mark. I can be all over the place like that. I think he first smiled at us around six weeks, and he's a giggly boy now.

But yeah, our first month with Charlton was a crazy, good, packing-on-the-chub kind of bliss. You are ours, sweet baby, forever more.



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