Cullen's First Halloween

Thursday, October 31, 2013
I am not usually a big fan of Halloween.  It is just not my holiday of choice.  But having a little one definitely makes it more fun!  

Allow me to introduce Linus. Who, true to character, loves his pumpkin!

I started thinking about Cullen's first halloween costume almost as soon as he was born, but it took me until September to actually decide on a costume.  That was the difficult part...making the costume was pretty easy.  He already had the shorts and shoes.  I bought a blue blanket, painted black stripes on a red t-shirt, and found the perfect jack-o-lantern treat bag at Pottery Barn Kids.  At the last minute, I put together a 'Welcome Great Pumpkin' sign; a Linus costume would not be complete without it.

Corey, Cullen, and I started the night handing out candy. Cullen had a blast!  He kept reaching his hand into the bowl to take a handful of candy before we could give it to the trick-or-treaters.  Sorry Cullen, no candy yet.

Once things slowed down a little, we took Cullen to about three houses.  He couldn't not trick-or-treat on his first Halloween!  We really just wanted to show him off to our neighbors, but he got a few pieces of candy anyway.  He had way too much fun 'sorting' his candy when we got home.

Happy Halloween everyone!

Nine Months

Monday, October 21, 2013
I know I say this every month, but I cannot believe that we have a nine month old!  That seems crazy!  

I didn't know it was possible, but Cullen is becoming more independent and more clingy at the same time.  He wants his freedom; wants to be able to crawl, stand, and cruise whenever and wherever he wants.  Half the time he insists on feeding himself (which he is getting really good at!)  Then there are times when I cannot walk to the other side of the room without tears.  If i walk away from him, he crawls after me like a little puppy until he reaches the baby gate; then he pouts.  Don't get me wrong, I am glad that he loves me so much, but being loved so much makes fixing dinner or picking up the house very difficult.

Let's hope I don't jinx this, but Cullen seems to be sleeping much better at night!  Cullen's nine month well check was a little over a week ago, and one of the things we discussed was his sleeping behavior.  I got a pretty stern lecture from the pediatrician about how I was handling middle of the night wakings.  (It was pretty obvious that Cullen was waking up because we I had created that habit; he didn't need anything other than attention.)  The doctor suggested that we try some kind of sleep training to get back to everyone in our house getting a full night sleep.  We discussed three or four options, but he suggested trying the cry-it-out method (based on his own personal experience with his three children.)  I was hesitant (what mother wants to let their child just cry alone in their crib?), but Corey really wanted to try it.  So I went along with it...for two nights.  Those first two nights were pretty rough.  the third night was awful.  Cullen cried that night like I have never heard him cry before.  I cried right along with him and decided that we were going to have to try another way.  This was not working.  And then, he slept 10 hours in one night.  I heard him wake up a few times, but no crying and he went right back to sleep on his own.  The next night, he slept almost 8 hours. So far, we are all sleeping much better!  I feel like a whole new person.  (Let's hope it stays this way!)

As of last Friday, this little chunk weighs 20 pounds 12.5 ounces and is 29 1/8 inches long.  That puts him in the 74th percentile for weight and 84th for length!  Which is not surprising because all of a sudden, this boy can eat!  He is up to three meals a day.  He loves any kind of fruit, yogurt, cheese, and some vegetables.  Its getting to be a little more difficult to get him to eat just veggies.  I have a feeling that is a battle we will be fighting forever, but mixed with fruit, he will eat just about anything.  And Puffs...he would eat a whole can of Puffs in one sitting if I'd let him.  We have to make sure that container is hidden until he has eaten everything else, or he will refuse to take another bite of the healthy stuff.

I love watching Cullen feed himself.  (Does that sound weird?)  He makes a huge mess, but seeing him use those little fingers to pick up a Puff or a piece of cheese and work to get it to his mouth has to be the cutest thing ever!  Macey loves when Cullen feeds himself too.  She stays camped out under his highchair at meal time.  It makes for pretty easy clean up though.  No need to mop after Cullen eats; Macey picks up every drop of food practically before it can hit the floor.

I am fairly certain we are going to have a walker on our hands before we know it.  Cullen is cruising around furniture like it's his job and is getting more confident on his feet.  He has started trying to let go of whatever he is using to balance himself when he stands up.  He very quickly sits down, or holds on again, but you can tell he really wants to stand on his own.  As much as I love watching him grow and learn new things, I am not ready to chase a walking baby around!  Chasing after him now wears me out!

Pumpkin Pickin'

Saturday, October 12, 2013
Since it is almost the middle of October, we figured it was probably time to get some pumpkins.  If you know me, you know how much I love family traditions.  I love that Corey and I have brought some of our childhood traditions into our family, but I am also excited about adding in our own new traditions.  I am hoping that one of those is picking out pumpkins every year.

Corey, Cullen, and I went to a local produce stand this morning to pick out some pumpkins to make our house a little more festive for fall.  Going to little places like this makes me feel like we live in a small town; I love it!

Look at this wall of jams, jellies, and syrups.  I picked out some pumpkin butter.  I can't wait to try it out!

I really loved all the pumpkin varieties they had.  Pink pumpkins, fairy pumpkins, whatever those green pumpkins are called. 

Cullen found a squash that was literally bigger than he is.  How does a squash even grow that big?!

Cullen and Corey picked out a pumpkin for the front porch.  It was really hard to choose!

Then Cullen got to pick out a pumpkin just his size.

He loves that little pumpkin!

I love how unique each of these pumpkins is!  And how cute they are sitting together as they bring a little festiveness (is that a word?) to our home!

See?  He loves that little pumpkin!

Also, it is crazy how much he looks like a little boy these days!  I loved watching as he saw everything at the produce stand today.  I love watching this little boy experience new things.  He was definitely at least as excited as I was!  I can't wait to make pumpkin pickin' a yearly tradition with our little family!

Now, since we are all decked out in our Clemson gear, it's time to watch the game.  Enjoy your weekend!

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