Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Happy Birthday, Oliver!

Yesterday (plus a couple weeks because I'm a slacker blogger; actual DOB = 1/8/08) was Oliver's birthday. Hard to believe, but true. It started with a disaster of a morning and ended in a mess of cake and cream. Good times!

It was only his fourth day of daycare, which had been going OK but not great. He's pretty used to easy and quiet, so daycare is a bit chaotic and overwhelming for him. And it doesn't help when Mommy forgets to pack his woobie (small security blanket) and bink (pacifier). Ooops! I did, however, remember the little Dr. Seuss books I brought for all of the other kids in his class. Since they frown on sweets, it seemed like a good compromise. Cute books, really. I hope they like 'em.

So instead of running home to get woobie and bink, I thought I'd hit Target to buy back-ups of each, as well as a few guilt-gifts for putting him through such trauma this week and especially on his birthday.

But even before I left for the trip to Target, there were some tears at the daycare. He really didn't want to be there. His awesome teachers tried to distract him with an activity though. When I left, he was expressing his emotions via art -- Oliver with the Blues, it seems. Yes, those are tears on his cheeks.

Turns out Target didn't have his bink brand, so I bought a sampler of three other brands. Then they didn't have his woobie either -- a white teddy with lion embroidered on it. So instead he got the pink one -- a pink teddy with a ladybug embroidered on it. Sorry, Oliver.

We went through the same separation angst after I brought back the Target goods, along with a back-up woosher (musical crib toy) -- a splurge for sure at $32, but it was his birthday and I was feeling guilty. (Even more guilty knowing that all my Target trinkets didn't soothe him at all.)

BUT, when I returned in the afternoon to get him -- he was happy again. Teachers said he had a pretty rough day all day, but at least he was happy when I got there. He was wearing the awesome birthday crown that Miss Luce had made for him and was busy trying to walk.

Yes, WALK! He's doing a great job, actually. Although, it's hard to say what qualifies as first-steps. They always make it seem like a black and white issue, but when you get right down to it, there are definitely different grades of first steps. I mean, he took some first steps when we held his hands and jostled him along; he took some first steps when he started moving with his push toy; he took some first steps when he held just our fingertips. It's mostly clear that those don't count, but what about now... when he steps from standing to mommy or daddy, but kind of ends the sequence of two-to-three steps with a nosedive into our arms and the origin or the stand prior was because we stood him at arms distance from us. If that counts, then he's taken his first steps. If we have to wait for him to move successfully between inanimate objects without falling, then we have a ways to go.

Anyway... that night I picked up a couple slices of cake at Lutz (yum!), some candles, and a simple balloon. I fed him his standard, yet favorite, grilled cheese and peas and we waited for Daddy to get home for the messy celebration before bathtime.

Here he is enjoying his cake and signing a big finish: VIDEO.

That following Sunday we had a pizza party for him. I'll try to get that into a slideshow soon. Still have that cruise to document, too. Blogging is hard work. And, according to Eric, who was amiss when I told him I can't find the photos from our trip to AZ last April: "You're slacking as the family archivist." He has a point, but my 2009 resolution is to do the best I can at everything and to be satisfied with that instead of beating myself up about it. Huge challenge, but I'm working on it...

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