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Friday, December 5, 2014

October (and the end of September)

So, as mentioned in a previous post, I decided to start doing posts my month instead of Harper's age, since she's over a year now.  Hopefully this will lead to me talking about things other than the baby?  We'll see.  Anyway, since her birthday isn't right on the beginning / end of the month, this post ended up being October + the end of September.

Let me start off with what I can remember about Harper milestone's, likes/dislikes, etc. for this period.  So, the big one is that she started walking!  I'll talk about that more in the post.  She also started saying a lot more words.  I can't remember exactly which words she started saying during this time except that she went through a pretty hilarious stage where if you asked a question (somehow she knew) she'd respond, in a very matter-of-fact tone with, "yeah."  Before this, she'd already been saying "momma" & "dada" for a while.  I know "woof woof" was an early one, either before this or during this period.  And signing "more" was before this.  I'm pretty sure she started signing, "hat" (which also just meant "pat pat" to her) during this time.  She used to sign "baby" during this time, but now she just says it.  She started saying "cracker" toward the end of October.  There may have been more, but it's hard for me to remember when she started saying the words she says.

As for likes & dislikes.  She loves buses & any loud machine, dogs, slides still, and is obsessed with water.  I'm not sure if it's the water of what the water comes in, but anytime anyone is drinking, she wants to drink too, especially if she can drink out of whatever you're drinking out of.  So, cups, sippy cups, straw cups, etc.  She also started to bring things over to me if she wanted me to do something.  So, like, she'll bring me a cup if she wants water.  One time, she brought over our big soap refill bottle and, to her dismay, I wouldn't let her drink it.  She was also obsessed, this month, with putting things in other things.  Like, she'd put all kinds of things in my clothes basket, or the trash (even the keys one time).  Made life interesting.  Pretty much what she doesn't like is waiting for food, not being able to have someone's food (or drink), washing her hands & face, diaper changes (though she isn't THAT bad) and being restrained (car seats, being held, holding still while putting on clothes, etc.).

So, the day after her birthday, Harp and I headed out to visit my family in California.  This was Harp's first time flying and I was doing it alone, so I was pretty nervous.  She ended up being about as good as you could as for her to be, but flying with a lap baby and no hubby is still really hard, even on such a short flight.  She didn't sleep on the flight, despite being way past naptime, so I had to entertain her the whole time.  Pretty much that means I fed her for most of the time.  Sometimes Harp's love of food does come in handy.

Checking out the planes.

My mom picked us up in LA and Harp slept in the car on the way home.  The rest of the week was filled with Grandma and Grandpa love, little outings and playing around the house.  Harp really enjoyed her grandparents as well as playing with all their toys.  In fact, she started opening things and putting things inside of other things while we were there.  Specifically while playing with the Sesame Street Clubhouse Little People set we used to play with as kids.  Those things are great.

Playing with grandma in the backyard.

On the swings, at the park, with Grandma:

I've had this plan to make baby shoes for a while now, but didn't have a sewing machine.  So, while I was there, I took the opportunity to use my mom's machine to make some mini-Toms.  Then, my mom gave me her old machine to take home and I was able to make another pair at home.  These shoes were the first thing I ever sewed, other than, like, a pillow case in Home Ec.

In progress.
The finished product:

Sadly, one of the Toms got lost in mid-October.

 Harp really likes pillows and beds and highly enjoyed playing on the one I was using.

Here's a video of her playing around on the bed:

There's something deeply satisfying about watching my brother play with a baby.  He's a total spaz and babies are spazzes, so it's all very entertaining.  Here are a couple of videos of the two of them:
(BTW, he's saying, "fat baby toes" in case you couldn't tell)

Being introduces to some retro toys - Trolls & My Little Ponies:

reading her books

We got to visit with both my grandparents (Money) and my great-aunt Margie.

Harp and I kickin' it in the backyard:

As the above picture shows, Harp was standing really well at this point.  She could get up without holding onto anything and stay up as long as she wanted.  She was definitely gearing up for walking and would take a couple steps at a time (even like six one time).  Both my parents and I reeeeally wanted her to start walking while we were there, but it was not to be.

Snuggling with Grandpa at a ward activity.  They were good buds.

I feel like this sign insinuates that the rest of the store's food is unhealthy...

After about a week of it being just Harp and I, Tom came to join us!!  Yaaaaaaay!  I wish Tom could always be with us on trips.  I'm currently on a trip as I type this and am missing my Tom again.  Anyway, when Tom got there Harp couldn't get enough of him.  She got SUPER clingy.  Like, if he walked a couple steps away from her she'd start crying.  Hopefully it made Tom feel missed, but it was also not terribly fun.  After Tom got there we got a hotel in Fullerton because we wanted it to be a vacation vacation - not a visiting family vacation.  Does that make sense?  Here's Tom and Harp enjoying each other's company at the hotel:

We made Harp her own mini-bookshelf at the hotel, and she loved it.
Her playing with her bookshelf:

We got the hotel deal through Groupon, BTW and it was great.  The hotel was totally adequate for our needs and super cheap.  Total win.

Loved this view of Harp from the monitor.

Tom arrived on a Saturday and we spent some time at a park by the airport, then went back to my parents house.  That evening my parents babysat while Tom and I went on a fabulous date.  We went to Downtown Disney and had a GREAT time, then hit up the grocery store on the way home.  It was a happy evening.

The next day, we went to church, took Harp to the park where we got married and chilled at the hotel.  Then, Monday and Tuesday we went to Disneyland and California Adventure!  The first day was Dland and my parents joined us, which was nice.

My friend let us borrow her Ergo 360 for the trip.  So far, it's the only carrier Harp likes.  I want one. Pretty sure her arms are supposed to fit in there differently though.

So, at one point we went into a gift shop and my mom handed her a Minnie Mouse doll and this is what happened (VERY CUTE):

Went on the teacups.  Harp liked it part of the time and seemed to be thinking, "whaaaaat?" part of the time.

By the way, Harp wore a Winnie the Pooh shirt that I have a picture of me wearing at her age.

Harp loves water balls.  They have one at the zoo and they had one at Dland.  It was hilarious because she just wanted to go in a circle around it, so she'd walk over all the other kids to do it.  No reservations.

Playing with the water ball:

We also spent some time in Toontown and Harp really enjoyed just playing at Goofy's House:

As you can see above, she was totally obsessed with this little nick in the pumpkin:

Walked a couple steps here.

We did a lot of other fun things that day and it truly was a great day.  Our only regrets were not having Harp meet Winnie the Pooh (with the shirt and all!) and not getting a Dole Whip.

The next day, it was just the three of us at California Adventure.  It was a great day too.  Although, it would have been great to get the park hopper pass so we could go to both parks that day.  There isn't quite as much to do at Cal Adv, but we had plenty to occupy ourselves with anyway.

Harp and Tom riding some ride I don't know the name of where you go around in a Chinese food box.

Harp napping by the pier.

So far the only character pics we have of Harp are with dogs! She loves dogs though and clearly enjoyed this meeting.

For me, the highlight of the day was watching Harp at the splash pad.  She LOVED this one for some reason and was so happy and cute.  She did her quasimodo crawl all over, chasing the water and kept leaning down and drinking from the puddles. 

Here's some videos of her playing with the water:

(A couple comments on this next one: First, she's obsessed with the stroller.  Second, notice that she's wearing socks in all these videos?   Yeah, they had a rule that all the kids had to be wearing something over their feet to protect them - even the babies.  We didn't even bring shoes for her, so we improvised with socks.)

We weren't the only ones enjoying her antics either.  At multiple points there were groups of people watching and pointing and laughing at her.  There was even this one guy that had fancy camera skills, who was taking pictures of his little girl.  But, then he got a glimpse of Harp and totally abandoned his own daughter in favor of taking pictures of Harp!  He even pushed his own daughter out of the way at one point.  Harp loved it, of course and totally hammed it up.  Wish I could have gotten some of HIS pictures!

Just look at this face.
We watched the light parade:

Watching the CA version of bumper cars.
Video of the above:

Tom's favorite part of Dland last time was the World of Color show at CA Adv.  He really wanted to see it again this time, but it would have been a disaster with Harp (overtired baby + cramped space), so Harp and I took the shuttle back to the hotel early and Tom stayed.  It was the right choice.  Harp would have been a terror and Tom ended up really loving it again.

The next morning, we packed everything into my mom's car and headed to the beach.  I felt like we couldn't leave without going at least once!  We ended up having a great time.  Harp LOVED the sand and the water and was pretty fearless when the tide would wash over her as she was playing.  She'd be surprised, but wouldn't cry.

Learning about sand and waves:

Playing with Mommy & Daddy in the sand:

Fun with Grandma:

I like how my mom took a "Baywatch" picture of me.

We buried Tom:

Just being a cute baby at the beach:

The flight home was MUCH easier due to Tom being there!  Plus, we got the whole row to ourselves, so she had some extra room to roam.  Since she'd been to the beach right before the airport and hadn't had a chance for a nap, she was VERY tired and fell asleep in my arms toward the end of the flight.  She was also tired enough that we were able to get her into the stroller without her waking up (this is rare!).  The next problem was that we had to get home.  Getting home involved Harp and I staying at the airport while Tom took the TRAX as close to our house as possible, then speed-walked to our house (in freezing weather with just a light jacket), then drove the car back to the airport to pick us up.  Harp woke up not too long after he left (darn loud kid that came by the stroller!) and was SO tired and SO sick of the airport and was a total handful while I waited for Tom.  Plus, I was exhausted too!  Plus, she was very mobile and I had A LOT of luggage to look after.  I was SO happy when Tom finally got back.  When we got home, Harp was so happy that she literally just started walking in the 30 minutes we were home before she went down for the night.  Everyone missed it but me.  Tom had left right after we got home for a meeting and my poor parents had missed it by less than a day.  It was so cute to watch her so happy to be home though.  She was just talking and exploring and so giddy.

The next day she was regularly walking across the room and by a couple days later she was no longer crawling at all.  

She found an empty yogurt carton and went to town.  It got ALL over her.
Just a day or two after we got home from California, this is her just learning to walk:

Happy to be home.

Climbing ALL the way up a ton of stairs to reach the high slide at the park.  She passes shorter ones on her way up, but knows what she wants!
Here's a video of her playing with a relative's baby at her cousin Lexi's baby party (like a baby shower):

I really hate posting videos with me in them, but I'm doing it anyway.  Here's one of Harp and I dancing:

On the morning of the day she had her 1 year checkup she found some chocolate in the pantry.  I let her have it for a little while but she was, of course, inconsolable after I took it away.  It gave me a good idea though.

After she got her shots, I whipped out the chocolate and this random French ABCs video we found on youtube (one of, like, 2 things she will watch) and the crying stopped immediately.  The receptionists were laughing though, when we checked out because she looked like this:

Literally a day or so after we got back from California we decided to move into a different apartment. The apartment was in the same building, so basically as soon as we told the landlord we wanted to he let us start moving in.  So, we had no time to relax post vacation.

We took a trip to IKEA for some things for the new apartment:

Harp had a great time walking all over IKEA, but was so so tired by the end.

Our beautiful new desk.  I love it.  I am actually using it as a craft/project desk, which I thought I'd never say.  I've never been into crafts, but lately I've been doing a lot of crafty things - sewing shoes, working on a quiet book, etc.

She woke up one morning with a piece of trash stuck to her face.
One day, during naptime, she managed to reach the monitor and pull it off the shelf it was on.  It was sooooo fascinating to watch through the monitor as she had it in her possession!  First she played with it in her hands for a while, then eventually dropped it on the mattress and I could still see her from where she dropped it, just from an entirely different angle.   Here's some footage I took while it was there:

Just a cute outfit.

Here's some videos I took of her when she was just walking around being cute at the apartment:

One evening we decided to go to a Jazz game as a family.

Harp LOVED all the TRAX trains we saw downtown and loved riding one.  She'd clap every time she saw them.
She had SO much fun!  Well, until she didn't anymore and we left.  We never expected to stay for that long.  But, at the beginning she was loving it!  She'd bounce and clap to the music and get all excited when everyone else did. It was a great little family outing.

Also, I took this ADORABLE video of her dancing to the music at the game and, of course, it's all choppy because I really needed a new phone and my old one's video and photo capabilities was just dyyyyying.  Sad. :

Just chilling on top of the shoe rack after taking all the shoes off the top.

One day, for Tom's birthday, we went to the outlets in Park City.  Harp had a blast wandering around all the stores.  At one of the stores she even befriended the cashiers and was wandering behind the cash registers with them.  She also took one of their keys and wandered around with it for a while...

Here's a video of her wandering at the nike store.  She was LOVING all the racks of handing clothes:

Covered in pillows.
For her first year, I didn't let her watch TV much.  Maybe a couple times when I was DONE or sick or something.  But recently I've started turning on "Baby Signing Time" for a few minutes while I get breakfast ready.  If I don't (and often even if I do) she'll follow me into the kitchen and yell at me non-stop til she's in her chair, eating.  I feel great about the new routine.  So far, Baby Signing Time is the only kids show she really likes.  Even then, she CLEARLY like one particular DVD the best.  While she always gets excited when I turn it on, she doesn't watch the other ones for very long.  It's really cute to watch her when she's excited about it though, and she has learned several signs.  So far, her favorite is "hat" (just patting your head twice) but I don't think she realized it means hat.  She just gets excited about patting things in general.  I especially love it when she pats my shoulder.  So sweet.

Sometimes we babysit her little friend Victor.  He's 2 months younger (but bigger than she is).  This video would be really cute if it weren't choppy.  They were sharing the maraca:

Sometime in October we went to Cornbelly's.  I was really looking forward to it and it's a great place, but she wasn't feeling real well and hadn't napped.  As a result she was kind of miserable most of the time, except when she was in the corn pit.

Corn pit video:

She got this doll for her birthday and it giggles when you squeeze it.  I taught her to hug it to get it to giggle and it's very cute to watch.
One of the weirdest things about Harp is that she is OBSESSED with the US flag.  At first we thought maybe it was just any flag and she liked the way they sway in the wind.  Nope.  In the picture below, for example, she's staring at this US flag pattern at the pool.  Yeah, it's not that big and we were pretty far away, but she spotted it and got VERY excited!  If there's a flag around, no matter how small, she will find it!  Then, she will get very excited and hold her arm out toward it with this awestruck expression.  She'll also cry when we walk away.  On the side of our grocery store there's a logo for US Bank, which is red and blue and, in that way, is kind of reminiscent of the flag and she does it to that too!  She doesn't do it to all red and blue things though, they have to be together like that.  I dont know, she just KNOWS if it's supposed to be like a US flag.  So weird.

One of the only times Harp is cuddly is when she's sick.  This one day she was a little sick, so she just laid (layed?  I do NOT have that grammar point down) on the bed with me for like 20 minutes or something.  So sweet and so unlike her!

We got a new big-girl car-seat and she is WAY happier in it.  I think it's because even though it's still reclined she can see out of it a lot better.  I will be very happy when she gets turned around and can see everything!

One day we got bored and went to Chuck-e-Cheese.

Video of her meeting Chuck-E :

Video of her riding around in one of the little kiddie rides at Chuck-e-Cheese.  She's so cute:

We go to the zoo a lot (we have a pass) and here are some videos from one day at the zoo:

Just wandering around:

Watching the carousel (I took this awesome one, where she was being SO cute....and it didn't record.  Darn phone!):

Just wandering around on her favorite spot around our apartment building:

Dressed her up and took her to Boo at the Zoo for some practice trick-or-treating.  She was SO cute walking around in her Pooh costume.  And yes, that's a carrot.  This picture reminds me of Popeye for some reason.

Went to this church women's activity and this was the AWESOME entertainment.  I want to be these ladies when I'm their age:

The next couple are from Harp's honorary Auntie Jill & Uncle Dave.  They moved into our old apartment, so they live right above us.  It's awesome!

Halloween!  I love Halloween and I was pretty excited to have Harp walking this year so I could take an actual child of mine trick-or-treating for the first time ever!  She dressed up as a black cat and her cuteness totally lived up to my expectations!  The night before Halloween we went to the Stake trunk-or-treat.  Then on Halloween we joined her cousin Ellie for trick-or-treating in the suburbs.

A little pre-trunk-or-treat treat.

She was super brave about it and would walk right up, grab a piece of candy, then try to walk inside their house.  So cute and funny.
Here's a great video we took of her very first time going up to a door and trick or treating.  Not only does she try to go inside their house, but she takes the candy and promptly puts it in Ellie's pail.  So cute:

Riding tandem with cousin Ellie.

Wow, this ended up being a mammoth of a post!  Not only was it looooong, I had to upload the videos the long way.  So glad to be done with it and moving onto the next one!


  1. Congrats on baby #2! I don't know who I heard it from but I am assuming they aren't crazy because you have the count down on the bottom of your blog. Harper is such a cute little girl! We hope you have a Merry Christmas!

  2. Wow, those shoes are adorable. I am so impressed with your sewing skills. And I love the pic on the giant rocking chair. It makes her look so teeny tiny!