10 March 2021

Well hello, saddle!

    I've got some things to say. After the year of pestilence we've all endured, preceded by a few of the years I have had, and now as things (hopefully!) are calming down or have returned enough to normal that I've had a chance to get my bearings, I want to make good on some of the lessons and keep them with me, and record them. 

    Not unrelated to that, I have set my sights to an upcoming chapter: the chapter wherein all my kids go to school for a little more than six hours a day. How this era of life has come so quickly, I cannot tell you, but unbelievable though it may be, in August, I should expect a hefty amount of time to myself every single weekday, at no additional cost! I have been mulling over what I will do with the time. As a woman who is equal parts introvert and extrovert I will appreciate this break, but I know I must have something to do to keep my idle hands from devolving into devil tools. My lovely husband has often encouraged me to write a book. I set out to do this very thing a thing a few months ago, and I even got a couple of chapters in. But it wasn't long before I relented to the feeling that I am not ready. To say I am a rusty writer would be a gross understatement. For several years now, I really only pick up writing when it's time to create a Christmas message on the back of our cards. And yet, I still have so many things swirling around in my brain, whether during a silent car ride to pick up Ruthie from preschool, or when one of my sons is yelling for my attention because he is convinced he will die of starvation momentarily without a second snack. Maybe, just maybe I could return to a bit of the internet to record and organize these thoughts, and in the process grease the writer wheels for a future, bigger writing moment.

I want to talk/write about a few things off the top of my head:

  • Megxit
  • Influencers are dumb and I'll tell you why
  • Every hero becomes a bore which is why I am done with putting people on pedestals
  • Love Thy Neighbor 
  • Misplaced energy
  • Authenticity may be fiction
  • I'm so (publicly) sorry (because if I'm not I'm in so much trouble!)!!!!

I know, I know, it's all so tantalizing, can you hardly believe your good luck??? Don't thank me, just buckle up, I'm getting back in the saddle.

P.S. Please note the sarcasm there at the end -- I am not a narcissist (to my knowledge).

This is me at my sister-in-law's house a couple of days ago, showing off my newly inherited AirPods to my sisters.

09 October 2016

Ruthie's Birth Story

Well, Ruthie turned 9 months old yesterday, so I guess it's time I document her birth in greater detail than I did on Instagram.

This pregnancy was brutal.  You know how you can have a wonderful and rich life, but because of hormones and the internal chemicals they get wriggling around, at certain points of your life you are unable to feel the wonder and richness of your life?  That was April 2015 to January 2016 for me.  So, needless to say, as Jeff and I were riding the elevator to the 2nd floor of the Mission Viejo Hospital, en route to the LABOR AND DELIVERY WARD, for my induction at 7:00 AM on January 8, I was absolutely giddy.  We got off the elevator and all 1_ 9 pounds of me did some pirouettes and twirls and prances toward the nurse's station.  I was so grateful to have finally arrived at my induction day. Even though we later paid through the nose for such services, they escorted us to the room and showed me the gown I was to put on and I was thinking things like, "Really??  For me??  WHAT WONDERFUL PEOPLE!" Again, I was just so happy that this was all really going to go down -- I was going to check a pregnancy at the door and go home with a baby.  Do I make my point? I have even more stories about the gleeful quality of the end of the pregnancy, but I'm done with them for now.

I don't remember my nurse's name.  She was the most no-nonsense nurse of my 3 deliveries.  Super nice, though, and we started getting all plugged in.  Dr. Capobianco came in and, knowing how greatly anticipated this day was, came to the foot of my bed and grabbed my blanketed toes and had them do a little dance.  "You made it!" he said.  He said he could break my water now, or we could wait until 12:30 PM when he was done assisting with a C-section.  My nurse had strongly recommended waiting until after my epidural was coursing to get my water broken, just in case the anesthesiologist was delayed and I started having big labor (and duh pain) before he could get to me, but the prospect of waiting until the afternoon for my labor to start seemed silly.  I rolled the dice and POP went my little water.  And it was all good, cuz my lovely anesthesiologist (whose name I also forgot) gave me the juice pretty quick.

I was so excited to just relax and let the contractions rock and roll while I was blissfully unaware, and I caught some sleep.  My sisters and sisters-in-law and close friends and mom texted every so often to check in, and I was happy as a clam, relishing what I knew could very well be my final delivery. Things progressed slowly at first, and then a quick race to the end.  She was ready to come!  The nurse called my doctor, and a few minutes later, the power went out.  That caught me by surprise.  I remember thinking, "WHAT?  The power can't go out in a HOSPITAL, I'm about to have a BABY!"

The generators brought it back on several seconds later, but the monitor that showed the baby's heart rate and contractions didn't.  The nurse said it was no problem.  We waited for the doctor, and I was very blissfully unaware (still).  I didn't notice, but Jeff realized our nurse was pacing, calling the doc every couple of minutes, and kept marching to the window where she'd be able to see him coming from his office across the street.  She seemed to be getting nervous that the baby's heart rate was plummeting or there was some sort of distress and we'd have no idea.  She was putting on gloves and telling me we'd start pushing without Dr. Capo when he thankfully came trotting through the parking lot.  She and Jeff were relieved and I was just lying there enjoying my epidural.

In came the doc in all his scrubbed glory, and I began to push.  Just 2 pushes, just a few minutes, and she was in my arms.  Pink as a Mentos, with a shock of almost-black hair like mine.  After holding her for a minute, they snatched her up to weigh and measure her.  She was 8 pounds, 10 ounces, and 19.5 inches. Once she got nursing, she stopped screaming :).  How do I go on from here in the story, though?  Anyone who's gone through child birth, or held a mother's hand while their child came barreling into the world, knows how inexplicably charged it is, how heart-wrenchingly wonderful.  Going back to each step of the day in my memory just makes my heart swell, swirl, and hurt a little.  What I wouldn't give to relive it again and again.  Ruthie was beautiful and sweet.  I just knew she was a good one, and I had been waiting to meet her for so long.  It took all day to decide on her name (it was between 3 in the end), but once Ruth was chosen it attached to her quickly.  The next two days were some of the best of my life, me and my Ruthie girl in our little recovery wing hospital bubble.  

She is the apple of our eyes, and we love her every single day.

07 September 2016

It took me 5 minutes to remember how to sign in.

I'm back!  Long enough for this update.

I totally love reading my last post and knowing that I am now long past that pregnancy.  WOOT WOOT!  Pregnancy is not my friend.  Babies, however, are my friends.  Ruthie is here, and she is glorious.  That delivery and my darling baby deserve their own post, which maybe I'll get to before she goes off to college.  She is 8 months tomorrow.

Here's an update on my threeeeee children:

Jude:  He started kindergarten a few weeks ago.  Star Wars OBSESSED.  As of last week, Power Ranger obsessed, too.  He is still my biggest fan, and tells me that I'm the best mom in the whole world even when I'm in no way an even fun mom (i.e. my entire pregnancy with Ruthie and the 3 months that followed her birth, at the very least). He is becoming more independent, but if I leave the room to switch the clothes from the washer to the dryer, and I haven't told him or he forgets I told him, he calls my name in a panicked voice like I just vanished and may never return (eeeeehhhhhhhhhhhhh).  Kindergarten is WONDERFUL.  He loves it, he loves his teacher, he loves his friends there, he loves learning.  He comes home happy every day.  Jude sometimes talks like he's on Happy Days.  Like in a "gee golly" kind of way.  He and Graham are really good at driving other up the wall, they are exceedingly good at beating each other up, but then they're also really sweet to each other (are they siblings or something?).  Today was Graham's first day of preschool, and as we were getting ready to head out the door Jude started giving him all the tips and making sure he remembered the rules from last school year, and it was the cutest thing. He's on the soccer team, he's taken a bunch of skateboard lessons, and he loves to swim, but I think his true loves are drawing and Lego building. He's analytical and very insightful with the abstract.  Last month he told me about how they always play a certain tune (and sang it for me) when Anakin Skywalker makes a choice that gets him closer to being Darth Vader.  What 5 year old just does that?  Anyway.  I am so proud of him.  My hopes for him this year are that he conquers his fears of imperfect performance, and that he learns to read and loves it (we've been doing the reading lessons together all summer but he currently does NOT love it).

Graham: He's a lover.  He is the most affectionate 3 year old I've ever seen in my life.  He will glom onto me any time, and during Sacrament Meeting always climbs onto my lap and says, "Letth Kith!" He has had it up to his eyeballs with Jude doing all the fun stuff, and always finds a way to sneak onto the soccer field during practice (like they won't notice).  He still throws killer tantrums.  He has really great natural balance, and does not give 2 hoots about drawing or coloring or learning letters.  The mellow disposition that has made him so easy and delightful to raise in most ways is biting me big time with the potty training -- he has been #1 potty trained since March (after 1 day of learning), but the #2 is still a big issue.  He just does not care.  I do care, as I'm the one rinsing out underpants (sob sob sob).  Anyway.  He asks the most hilarious questions, like "Mom, what is a steamroller called??" and gets the cutest quizzical look on his face. His voice is raspy, his hair is blonde, he's built exactly like my brother Cameron (whom he's named for and who is built like a McOmber, so sayeth the McOmbers).  He is boycotting food lately, so I had to cut him off from milk to get him to buckle down and eat. He loves nursery and his nursery leaders.  He plays independently most of the time, Jude is his best playmate.

Ruthie: A slushy, gushy, almost-8-month-old.  She is in that magic phase where she just smiles at me like I'm in the business of hanging the moon at all times.  She has my hair, just a little lighter brown.  She has the usual Hayes kid blue eyes, super-sized.  She crawls as of last week, and says "mamamamama".  She is in love with her brothers, and they are in love with her.  She laughs and grins at everything they do.  She has no girly toys, so she chews on Star Wars figurines, lightsabers, and Magna Tiles.  It was a rough beginning with her (not so much because of her, just the THREE aspect), but at about 3 months along a lot of things fell into place and she's had us in baby magic land.  I really think most of the time I ought to be done with issuing forth more progeny, but she's so delicious, I can't stand the thought of this being the end of my baby snuggling days.  Sometimes I wonder if women have this self-destructive need to keep having babies until we are so broken by them it is undeniably clear that we should be sterilized (yikes).  And then how do the other kids do in the midst of another difficult pregnancy and 3 or 4 months of sleep-deprived, hormonally super-charged life? I don't know.  Anyway, the upshot here is that I've been drinking in every moment of my Ruth Kathryn.  She can do no wrong, we love every inch and ounce of her, and I genuinely look forward to each coming stage.  I really get excited about the clothes awaiting her future sizes in her closet.  I dream of the day she will happily watch The Sound of Music with me (which just the tease of makes the boys scream or sob).  She just makes us all happier and better.

I have about 4,000 funny quotes in a note on my iPhone from the boys, maybe next I'll get around to that.  And they're also not in chronological order, so there's that, too.  High 5!  And welcome back to the blogging world to me!

02 September 2015

Never mind. It's a girl!

The doc and ultrasound tech changed their minds and we've got a little lassie en route to our eternal links!  It took a while to swallow, I'd really become attached to my little boy fetus, but now I'm envisioning someone to watch The Sound of Music with me, and go to Women's Conference with me, and shop with me, and I'm thinking it's going to be a blast.  Also, I didn't really know the Father/Daughter bond was a "THING" until the last few years, so I'm thrilled for Jeff!

Come soon, little girl!  Mummy can't wait to meet you!

18 July 2015

Whipping Up Another Boy!

We are so thrilled (and surprised and not surprised) to be awaiting a little bundle of BOY early, early in the new year!  Another winter baby boy to snuggle; I can hardly muster the patience for his newborn squeaks and smell.  The way they cross their legs and tuck when you pick them up under the arms -- oh it's enough to make me an Octomom.  Yeah right.

This pregnancy has been my hardest yet.  And very different from the other two!  I would've thought, "Oooh, it's probably a girl!" but my friend Dr. Reynolds (go see him if you need a little work done!) told me long ago that all that stuff about carrying genders differently, different symptoms coordinating with the sex of the baby, is all balderdash.  Anyway, I was much sicker, but the sickness ended earlier than with Jude and Graham.  I am so tired.  No, so, so tired.  I feel like this baby is emitting Ambien juice through the amniotic sac and I could fall asleep at any moment.  Every day I try and devise a plan to get Jude to take a nap so I can too (guess what, it never works).  And then comes the crankiness, the unearthly range of emotions, my little tots need me endlessly and I just want to sit down and be left ALONE, the house is not as clean as it used to be, none of my clothes fit, etc. etc. etc. etc. etc.!

However, eye on the prize!

At the risk of sounding like I think daughters are rug burns (I'd love to have one!), here are some perks to 3 boys:

  • No weddings to pay for.
  • I don't need to buy any baby clothes (toddler and older clothing, however, gets beaten to a pulp).
  • So far my boys have been obsessed with me and shower me with looooove!
  • I'm already in the boy zone!
I do think it's sort of hilarious that we really tried to nab ourselves a summer or early fall baby -- not in the cards.  It took a little longer this time and here I am with my third winter baby.  This means that between January 3 (my current due date) and February 14, we will celebrate every birthday in the family but mine.  Plus Christmas right before, then our Anniversary is in January too.  So by the time Valentine's is over we'll be fat (cake) and poor (presents and parties).  I'm considering Disneyland passes this next round because once we're through with the parties and presents, it could easily cost more than those annual passes.  

I also do think it's sort of hilarious that Jude wanted a girl.  Bad.  Before I got the gendertastic ultrasound, he would insist it's a girl.  I'd remind him that Heavenly Father might be sending a boy, and he would disagree and say something along the lines of, "No, I think Heavenly Father is sending a girl and she will be so cute and I will give her hugs!"  After his swim lessons he gets to pick a prize out of a bucket and he was always picking little plastic bracelets and hair clips to use as Christmas presents for the baby.  It was so cute that part of me felt that he should be have this sweet little wish come true!  When we found out it was a boy he was already snoozing, but the next morning he mentioned his sister again and I said, "You know, Jude, the baby is going to be a boy."  And for some reason, this time he totally went with it.  I said, "I'm going to need you to help me teach him how to throw balls, and color --" and he goes, "Yeah and make him laugh like Baby Cash (his buddy Ryder's little brother)!"  Problem solved.  He has mentioned a few times that NEXT time Heavenly Father will send a girl. HA!

Here's to this little baby I've been waiting for.  Dear little fetus that I may have felt kick last night for the first time, we love you already!

24 August 2014


Hey y'all, I've moved this whole shebang over to wordpress!  Continue reading at merzyhayes.com!

13 August 2014

Hayes Family Reunion 2014

We just got back from our Hayes Family Reunion in Duck Crick (Creek), UT.  We keep talking about what a great time we had.  Lest I forget some of the details, a load of pictures with captions:

We're on our way.  So dang early in the morning.
This is how Graham road trips: Feet up on the driver seat like it's his own personal ottoman, and he pointed/squealed at every truck we passed.

I reached back to tickle him, and another typical Graham move: he just grabbed my thumb to give it a good gnawing. 

Michelle put together a bomb treasure hunt for the kids.  The pot o' gold at the end was a big tub of candy and animal masks for everyone.  Jude was sleep deprived and either whimpering, crying, or giving the stink eye oh about 70% of the trip, so I was not surprised when he looked at the mask with disdain (even on a good day he doesn't like things stuck tight to his face or head).  Here's good old dad trying to convince him how fun it is to be a puppy. I love Jeff.

Last spring, we had an Eaton Family Reunion in this same cabin, and Jude and Ian had a merry old time chucking cans of Coke Zero off the deck.  This year it was Graham's turn to hurl things off; there's Jude's boot at the bottom, and I spy with my little eye my flip-flopped foot and Graham's incriminated Batman (TM) boot.

Uncle Justin is the best teddy bear around.  Graham was obsessed with his tickle fests, and I had the best time driving with him and Angie to a hike.  Justin is happy, friendly, loves to tease and joke around, and it had been a long time since I'd had a good conversation with him. We love the Lewis fam!

Bryce Canyon Glory!  Jude: "Daddy.  Don't go down there."  "Ok, Jude."

This gave me anxiety.

There was a big tub of toys.  Jude was incensed that there were no trains in there.  How dare they.  HA!  But he improvised, fell in love with a toy doctor kit, and then there was this gross motor skills toy meant for an infant that pretty much all the kids played with and adored. ???

See?  Here's Graham having his millionth go at it.  And he's holding his extreeeeemely healthy smoothie made by Aunt Erica; he had 3 servings.  This was nice because I think at that point everyone else had thrown healthy eating out the door.

Graham found flashlight.  Score.

Graham totally posing for Aunt Michelle -- hilarious!

I would use this for my Christmas Card.  Thanks for this gem, Michelle!

When Jude wasn't with Lizzie Bear, he was asking (whining) for Lizzie Bear.

I am obsessed with this little imp.

And all too quickly it was time to go home. In parting, I shall inform you of the blow out diaper that rendered Graham's onesie unwearable.  Nothing gives me more delight as a mother than wandering around Whiskey Pete's gas station food mart waiting for Jeff to finish his potty break, holding your tot that's only wearing a diaper, and trying to keep your 3-year-old close at hand.  Until next time, Hayes fam!    

21 July 2014

Graham's cracker

My favorite thing that happened today:
I was throwing a ball back and forth with Graham, which puts him out of his mind with glee.  He squeals, thrusts out his arms, and stomp-runs to chase it.  After one toss of mine he chased it, and  passed over a graham cracker he'd abandoned on the floor earlier.  A few steps from there, he squealed again, ran back to the cracker, the same jubilant edge, and shoved it into his mouth. 
And then he lumbered over and collapsed in my arms.
He's one of my unending obsessions.  

14 July 2014


I've felt that things have become so busy, even outside of my life chasing my little raccoons, and I'm trying to stay on top of it all.  More on that later.  Things I'm realizing I might not properly record any time soon:
  • On Valentine's Day this year Jeff and I got to go to an Imagine Dragons concert.  I first became converted after their Letterman performance.  I give their concert 2 big, fat thumbs up.  As we got close to The Forum I started to remember that oh wait, I'm old and exhausted and have no energy for such partying.  And then once we parked I was laughing to myself and/or out loud at the early-20s girls dressed in minimal clothing and 6-inch heels, adjusting their clothing nervously and gabbing endlessly.  For the life of me I don't know how they could handle more than an hour in that mode of living. But enough of that.  I rallied and dug deep into the burrows of my heart and mind for the energy to enjoy the entire evening.  Back to the concert: I feel like guys in the music industry can get away with murder.  As a man, you don't have to have a powerful or even nice-sounding voice to be main-stream successful  Many male performers I've seen live spend a lot of time avoiding the entire concept of stage presence on a stool.  Dan Reynolds (and the rest of the band) have natural talent that made them sound great live, and interesting to watch!  But I also know it's not just the abilities they were born with, it's been a huge, massive pile of hard work over a long time.  I was very impressed, and feel like they're just a few steps behind the monumental vibe of a Coldplay concert.  Speaking of Coldplay....
  • I'm still depressed over the Gwyneth Paltrow/Chris Martin divorce.  Apparently now, according to court documents, he's moved back into their Brentwood house and they could possibly be reconciling, but until I read a "reliable" statement from one or both of their reps I shan't get my hopes up.  And so I haven't been able to get myself to listen to a beat of Coldplay's new album. 
  • I'm currently being sucked into the Mia Wasikowska/Michael Fassbender version of Jane Eyre once again.  It's probably got to do with its brooding and mysterious vibe, which is so the polar opposite of my life. 
  • I still need to write about the rest of our trip to Copenhagen and Denmark, but I think about it every day.  It was magic.  Euro magic. 
And that's all for now!

08 July 2014

The Bruiser

Graham is my bruiser.  He climbs the park structures and down the slides like a boss.  Jude takes toys from him and body slams him all day long, and he doesn't bat a lengthy eyelash, but if I haven't read his mind on food or beverage, or put him down too soon, he scrunches up his face and smooshes out his soggy lips.  He loves to climb up on the couch and lean way back, getting really comfy.  And he beholds his kingdom (the family room) with a look of satisfaction. 

He woke up crying from teething last week and I went up to take him some Tylenol.  I picked him up and as I put the dropper to his mouth he growled, "Not that!"  I had to laugh -- he growls 90% of his little sentences. 

He loves hanging with the bros.  If there's a grown man around, that's who he wants to play with.  On the 4th of July, we went to the beach with a bunch of friends, and Graham spotted the Air Force Pilot in the bunch immediately (Seth Schurtz) and climbed up on his lap.  It's like he knew that of all the people there, this guy would be most likely to hook him up with a ride on a fighter jet.  They shared a can of Pringles, and Graham would take huge stacks of them and shove them in Seth's mouth. 

He tries to run and it's the cutest thing you've ever seen.  If I leave the baby gate open for 2 seconds he knows it and books it as fast as his fat legs can go, pumping his arms, eyes wild with the thrill of MAYBE making it into the office where he can throw pens around.

Long live Bruiser!

26 June 2014

More Jude quotes

  • Jude calls Christopher Robin from Winnie the Pooh "Christmas-topher Robin".
  • Buttons are "bundts" and I love it when he says "I pushed those bundts."
  • I was trying on some shoes and there were some Converse on a nearby table.  Jude said, "Don't wear those shoes, Mom. Those are for kids. 
  • "Sometimes you just get bonks."
  • "Mom, I'm eating this comb."  "Does it taste good?"  "No...it just tastes like chicken."
  • As of a couple of days ago he calls me "Honey".  I chuckle every single time.
  • I was in the middle of the bedtime routine in Jude's room, Graham was getting cranky so I put him next to Jude, and Jude goes, "Get off!" and then put his hands over his eyes and whispered "Get off get off get off get off!" like he was using every ounce of self-control.  :)
  • "No, no, no buddy," to Graham when Graham was banging on the fireplace.
  • He's dying for a Lego VW Bus set, and I told him maybe for Christmas.  He goes, "I am Christmas."
  • This week while singing him Primary songs at bedtime, "I just need to hold your hand."

18 June 2014

This and That

  • We learned the hard way that IKEA is really only good for picture frames, book shelves, ie things that don't get moved much.  So we got new dining chairs to replace the crap IKEA chairs, and the next day Graham started climbing on them every chance he got.  Jude watched him stand on the kitchen table in awe and I could see inspiration flooding his brain.  Anyway, the chairs sit behind the gate, in the front hall 99% of the time.  Nice.
  • Jude is really into the "I have to _____."  I have to eat a lollipop.  I have to go to the park.  I have to play with the screw driver.  I have to hit Graham.
  • Speaking of beating up Graham, I was holding him yesterday and Jude goes, "Mom, put Graham down.  I have to shoot him." 
  • As soon as they get out of the bath, Graham likes to do his Frankenstein walk down the hall, chasing Jude and growling full-force and Jude thinks it's hilarious.  Cute.
  • Graham must have everything just like Jude.  He wants the same kind of cup, he wants to hold the same kind of food even if he has no intention of eating it, he wants the same toys, etc. etc. etc. 
  • Jude is all about the letters and pretending to read.  Maybe one of the cutest sights mine eyes behold is when he pretends to read a book to me or his stuffed animals.  It's also a hoot to find out what he's really hanging onto from when I read to him.
  • When we have family prayer in the morning, all we need to do is say the word and no matter where Graham is, he will buzz right over to the family room and prostrates himself on the rug.  He thinks this is how we pray because Jude usually starts with an obedient kneel but quickly rolls onto the floor.
  • Jude and 3 other boys from church have had the CUTEST playgroup of all time for the past 6 months.  Even though having 4 little boys ages 2 and 3 plus Graham was a little crazy for the one day a month I'd host, it was also so endearing and sweet.  The boys are totally snuggle monsters and hilarious.  Anyway, we're taking a break for the summer because 2 of the boys have older siblings that will be out of school.  I think Graham is going to be a little depressed about this; he lights up when it's just the two of us and he gets all the attention to himself.  Just wait, my little lamb, preschool is just a few months away!  (And playgroup will resume 1 day a week.)
  • I've been editing a recipe book and am still working for a non-profit doing some marketing and writing.  So that's why this blog has been neglected; I put the kiddie bops to bed and start working a little and before I know it it's way past my old lady bedtime.  But good news: since The Mindy Project went on summer hiatus I had nothing to "watch" (listen to) whilst I worked but Hulu+ just got Real Housewives of Beverly Hills -- score!  This'll keep me busy for a few months.

26 May 2014


This jolly barnacle is built like a 1930s boxer, and walks like Frankenstein's monster.  The things that make him most happy are still being held, tickled, giving zerberts, and EATING. 

Besides a hefty load of "DADADADADA" he walks around saying, "I DID IT!" all the time.  Sometimes it's obvious what he just did; he got ahold of the ___ he wanted, pushed himself up, gave Jude a zerbert, but sometimes he just says it and we assume he must be talking about blinking his eyes or breathing in and out.  This nearly omnipresent phrase is cute, and mixed in at times with "I NEED THAT!" or "I GOT IT!

He takes a 2-3 hour nap, and has yet to give me the witching hours in the afternoon that are so prevalent in little runts.

He calls me "Nonny" most of the time, sometimes "Momma." 

He's in that phase where he is such a klutz and a complete and total danger to himself.  He gets a new bruise or scrape before the last one has a chance to heal.  You can see the shiner he got from the bathtub -- I promise I was holding onto him!  I just pray he keeps his teeth. 

He loves to arrange and with just a teensy amount of guidance, he will clean up toys in their proper place, and loves to throw away trash.  Or anything into the trash.  I have fished several non-garbage items out of the trash can, and a bottle of Aquaphor I saw him walking around with is still MIA.  I suspect I shall never see it again.

I spend so much time kissing his poofy cheeks; he's still the dreamiest Graham of them all.