It is hard to believe that Christmas is just around the corner. I mean, it is four days away. I have been purchasing gifts for Christmas since summer -- so the fact that it is actually here (and I can get stuff out of closets) it crazy.
I often find myself wishing Harper was old enough to understand Christmas (it's true meaning and how we celebrate it today), but then I feel guilty for essentially wishing time away. I don't want her to grow up too quickly -- so if that means we have another year of her not really knowing what is happening, that's great. So no, we didn't do an elf this year (I am not sure that we will -- for various reasons.) We took Harper to visit Santa at Lenox Mall. We went before Thanksgiving because a) waiting in line is not a favorite pastime of mine, and b) before Thanksgiving? After Easter? On her birthday? Taking pictures with Santa meant nothing to Harper so it didn't matter when we took her.
Harper - 2012 (8 months old)
Harper - 2013 (20 months old)
Although Harper doesn't know what is going on, she has really enjoyed all of our Christmas crafts, decorating the tree (or un-decorating, as it is a passion of hers), decorating cookies, going to see lights, decorating then destroying a gingerbread house, playing with Baby Jesus and waving to Santa. ("Hi Santa" is what she says to our Santa cookie jar as she waves to him -- all the time.) She also says "oooohhhh liiiiights" a lot. She will follow that up with a "pretty."
Harper is at a really fun age. She sleeps like an absolute champ (unless she has a cold or is teething...in which case she is a monster.) 8:30-8:30 most every day. She is more interested in animals than anything else. We practice colors and numbers. She will say colors -- but since we used to laugh when she always said yellow, she now says yellow expecting us to laugh. We are trying to remedy this. She will count to three using her hands (the best a 20 month-old can) and say "A...B..." but she really knows much more about animals. She is obsessed with our dogs (mostly Jackson) and Toby Jack, the mule.
I have always known that Harper liked books, but she is really starting to develop opinions and favorites. We have to read "Merry Christmas Splat" every day before her nap. She loves the book I gave her last Christmas "Daddy Takes me to a Georgia Tech Game." (She says YELLOW...JACKETS a lot.) "Move over Rover," "The Cat in the Hat," and "10 Gingerbread Men" are some of her current favorites. She will sit down on her own (in any room -- even if she is alone) and read to herself. She ends every book with an "Amen."
Aside from being the most adorable child (haha), she has started having some tantrums. Not full on ones -- but situations where I can see she is irrationally upset and she doesn't really know why and clearly I don't. We have taken to just talking to her calmly and trying to redirect her. It is working for now. Occasionally she will hit or throw something and go to time out. That's pretty special. Trying to keep her to sit in one place for a minute, let alone 30 seconds, is tough. She is very bright and can quickly develop bad habits. It is so hard not to laugh sometimes -- and it's even harder when other people laugh at her misbehavior because you don't want to correct them, but you certainly don't want your child thinking this behavior is acceptable. Ah, parenthood.
ok -- a few current things about Harper:
favorite time of day (for her): right when she wakes up (from nap or in the morning) or when daddy comes home from work
favorite food: cheese. raisins.
favorite book: Merry Christmas Splat or Puppy Boo
favorite movie: Toy Story. (will she sit to watch any show or movie from start to finish? No. but she likes Woody and Buzz)
favorite activity: painting (without ANY help from mommy) or playing on the playground
hidden talent: ability to dance non-stop regardless of the weather, time of day or her level of fatigue
best friend: she has a couple human ones and she says their names, but Jackson is probably her best buddy
favorite song: "Driving in my Car"
worst time of day: when mommy is cooking dinner or if H doesn't get a good nap (eek!)
new words: I wouldn't even know where to start. Her saying her friends names is probably the sweetest.
OK -- a few pictures and then I am off --
at the Pink Pig after seeing Santa
at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens
reading in her playroom
coloring with her BFF, Caroline
at the fire station with Brendon, Michael and William (and moms)
Brendon and Harper weren't big fans
ok she changed her mind
Merry Christmas to those of you reading this. I pray that 2014 is a prosperous year for you all.