I feel like my last post about Sam did not do his one-year-old self justice. This kid. He is so determined, stubborn (yet still sweet), loud and just so so fun. (Ok, I have probably said that all before).

But! Just in the last two weeks, I swear he's changed so much. He's getting so much older and it's crazy. He is sooo demanding when he knows you have something he wants (FOOD). He loves food. (mostly). An orange or banana? You cannot peel it fast enough for him. He just grunts and yells and whines until you give it to him. But sometimes he won't eat regular old food (like beans or, you know, a vegetable) until we either put it on a fork, just to let him pick it up off the fork, or feed it to him with a fork. It's like he knows eating real food with fingers is for suckers and he'll have none of it. Time to get him a baby fork.

And if you're standing where Sam wants to be, watch out. His 20 pounds will come at you in full force.

I opened the fridge and he scrambled right in and grabbed a clementine. Before I even realized, he had taken a few bits of peel off (I don't think he ate them) and sucked out half the orange. And that day's outfit was stripes on stripes, apparently.

He has aced the stacking toy and loves it. I wrote last week how he love his blocks and knocking them down, but he also is getting more into stacking them.

This is from his little "party" we had after his birthday. He pounded that cupcake down and loved it. We had a few friends over with kids Sam's age and it was a lot of fun. I think the dads had more fun than the babies playing with Sam's blocks.

Also, this kid is finally sleeping through the night (it really did just magically happen around his birthday) and we are soooo happy. Life is looking pretty good on this side of a year, sad as it is to leave our little baby behind.

sam's quilt

On New Year's Even I finally, finally, finished Sam's quilt. I was not leaving 2013 without finishing it. The night before we left for Utah, I cut, ironed and sewed the first side of binding. And then, after my grandma showed me how, I spent spare minutes and hours (i.e. the wee hours of the morning) working on that hand stitching. I could have done it on the machine, but hand stitching is more portable. And you know, experience.

My grandma said it takes her about 2 hours to do the binding on a baby quilt. I hope someday to be as talented as her, because it took about 2 hours per side. But I finished! And I love how it turned out. 

I simultaneously want to make all the quilts and then never make another one. But I am loving modern quilts with Swiss crosses, stripes, triangles and chevrons. (You can see the quilts I've been eying here) I think I will try to get another quilt done this year.

FYI: I used this pattern. I think I printed out the triangle the wrong size (too big) because I ended up unpicking one row of triangles so it could fit on the backing. Oh well! I accidentally bought enough fabric to make almost 3 quilts (it says 1/2 a yard, but I read them all as 1 1/2. oops!


12 months! 1 year! wahoo! So this month, I offered Sam a cracker and a toy, laid him down and by the time I opened my camera, he had eaten the cracker and was up and ready to move. Laying down was not happening for this birthday boy. 

Sam loves eating oranges, splashing in the bath, playing with his collection of wheeled objects, walking along furniture, opening and closing things, and giving big cheesy grins. He was sick for most of Christmas break and and ever since, he has started laying his head down on your shoulder when he's just woken up, ready for a nap or not feeling good (since we seem to be on another round of sickness). It's dreamy to have him snuggle so much. He also likes to wipe his nose all everything, especially a clean shirt or the couch. He's getting two more teeth and we are thinking that we may actually need to cut his hair, at least around his neck.

He says uh-oh, mama, and dadablahblah on repeat. He likes to open the kitchen drawers and we've just moved all the dangerous things and let him have free reign. They are only young once, right? He got some blocks for Christmas and loooves to clap them together or knock over a tower that you just built.

I'm not sure what else I can say that hasn't already been said each month as I write these posts. He's the sweetest and we are so lucky! Thanks for following along each month!

it was a good one

Apparently it took a week or two (and I thought I published this days ago...)to recover from the holidays, but we're back! It's a little late, but here are some pictures from Christmas. No surprise that Sam didn't really care, but it was a wonderful day with Dave's family. We had a lot of fun.
 On Christmas Even, Dave arranged Sam's new blocks (made by Dave) into a mining bucket formation. Sam's like...eh. He'll stick with his favorite toy at Grandma's, the car garage.
 I found this citrus reamer in my stocking...that Dave made! He worked on it Christmas Eve and wow, isn't it a beauty?
Trying out a fun iPhone lens.

one year.

I know I echo almost every parent who has ever spoken on their child's birthday: I can't believe it's been a year. Honestly, I feel like I remember every single day, but I don't know where those days went. It's been a very fun year. I remember that first night home from the hospital, thinking I'd never sleep again. And I remember the first smiles we got, the screaming/shrieking phase, the first solids, the new skills he worked so hard for...and I look forward to all the years ahead of new things and adventures with this little guy in our life.

It's been so fun watching him grow and learn. We love seeing him become more independent and sure of himself. He is just the sweetest and spunkiest little boy. We adore his crooked smile, his love for moving objects and clapping and his growing stubborn streak.

He is not the baby that made me a mother or Dave a father, but he is the baby that holds our hearts together.

our best recipes of 2013

I used to post about new favorite recipes, but I don't think I did that once this year (aside from the occasional link). But we did find some favorites this year and I thought I'd share! It's hard to narrow it down, but these are the recipes that really stood out. Here are our top five.

1. sweet potato burritos (the best find of this year; we make these about every other week)

2. sweet potato fries (also a frequent side)

3. lemon cream pie (the absolute best lemon pie)

4. chocolate chip cookies (Dave's favorite dessert and a favorite recipe; we make these all the time)

5. chocolate cake (I only made this once but oh my, it was so good. A favorite chocolate cake)

you can find more favorites here.

What were your culinary highlights of 2013?

happy new year!