Monday, January 11, 2016

Brooke & Brecklyn are Eleven Months Old!

Brooke and Brecklyn are 11 months old today! This is the last monthly update I'll do for them before they turn one year old. Then, we'll have two toddlers! Eeeeep!

Brooke at 11 months old

Brecklyn at 11 months old

Brooke is still quite a bit bigger than Brecklyn. She's taller and heavier, and I think they feel really different when you hold them. Brooke wears size 12 to 18 month clothes, size 3 and 4 shoe, and size 4 diaper. She still has a head full of wild, curly hair :-).

Brecklyn wears size 9 and 12 month clothing, and many of the 12 month pieces are still a little big on her. She wears size 3 shoe and size 3 or 4 diaper. It's hard to keep track of two sizes of diapers, so I only carry size 4 in my diaper bag or on trips. Brecklyn does ok with size 4s, so we are moving her up once we use all the size 3s we have. It will just make things easier for us! Brecklyn's hair is calm (mostly), straight, and blonde. 

Brecklyn is a GREAT sleeper, and consistently sleeps 12 hours at night. She's still a tummy sleeper and likes to have her hands up by her face. When we first lay her down, she will often rub her face back and forth on her hands until she falls asleep. If we aren't careful to keep her nails cut short (like trim them every other day), then she will scratch her face :-(. 

I love to rock the girls to sleep. It's a great opportunity to have a little one-on-one time with them. Brecklyn will generally fight sleep by screaming, crying, and making her body stiff for a few minutes, then she'll moan for a minute or two, then fall asleep. Brecklyn loves stuffed animals and likes to cuddle one as she sleeps.

They will both still sometimes fall asleep in the car, but not often. If one falls asleep while riding, it's generally Brooke, although on New Year's Eve Brecklyn was the one who couldn't make it home. 

I'm sad to say that Brooke is still not a great night sleeper. While there are some nights that she'll sleep through, there are far more nights that she wakes up crying at least once at some point in the night. We try really hard to not go in to her room immediately if she cries, but then we run the risk of Brecklyn waking. It's always a tough decision! Brooke just loves to be held and snuggled while she sleeps, so she will generally fall back to sleep quickly if we pick her up and rock her. We were all doing better with this issue until Brooke was sick for a few days earlier this month, then we were out of town a few times over Christmas. Those things seemed to have really thrown her off sleep-wise, so we're trying to reset and get back to good sleep. We all need it!

Brooke is also a tummy sleeper. She likes to sleep with her hands tucked under her torso and her little booty in the air. Love it! 

While out of town for Christmas, we had the girls share a pack-n-play one night and for naps one day. They used to do this all the time (it's what they slept in for the first 3 months of their lives), but they are for sure too big for it now! They did okay with it, but we'll have to do something different from now on. 

Brooke (pink) and Brecklyn (pastel) napping together

For the most part, they both wake up happy from nighttime and naptime. In the mornings, Brecklyn generally wakes earlier than Brooke, so we take her out of their room and let Brooke sleep a bit longer. However, during the times that they both wake about the same time, I'll put them in Brooke's crib to play together while I get ready for diaper changes and choose their clothes for the day. I see lots of smiles first thing in the morning!

Brecklyn, Brooke

In these photos, you can really see how much taller Brooke is than Brecklyn!

One big change this month is that I started weaning the girls. They had been nursing 4 times a day (8:00am, 12:00pm, 4:00pm, 8:00pm). I dropped the 12:00pm nursing session about two weeks ago, and started offering them whole milk in a sippy cup (with a straw) with their lunch. They both love having the cup and drink the milk well! Neither one have shown any signs of missing that nursing session. I was so relieved for an easy transition!

Brecklyn trying out the sippy with cow's milk

She approves!

Brooke trying out the sippy with cow's milk

She also approves!

Big girls!

A few days ago, we dropped the 4:00pm nursing session, as well. I do give them formula bottles (they both drink 7 to 8 oz) at this time, and again, they haven't shown any signs of wanting to nurse. Brecklyn has never been one to drink well from a bottle, but she gulps it down with no problems. We have discovered that she likes to hold her own bottle, and she takes it best that way. I wonder if that's been the secret to getting her to drink from a bottle this whole time?!?

The girls do eat oatmeal cereal (mixed with formula) for breakfast and baby food at lunch and dinner. They do really well with these unless there is table food that they think they would like better. For example, if we go to eat at a Mexican restaurant, Brecklyn will not take a bite of baby food for anything. She loves rice and beans and will only eat that! What can I say? She's like her Momma :-).

They sit well in high chairs when we're eating out, although they sometimes get a little more comfortable than we like {Brecklyn} ;-).

Both of the girls have really advanced with how mobile they are this month. Brecklyn had just started pulling up when she turned 10 months old, but wasn't doing it much. Now, she does it all the time with no problems! She loves standing at anything she can pull up on, and it won't be long before she's taking her first steps. 

She does stand on her tiptoes a lot of the time. Bren was like this too, and he still walks that way sometimes.

Brooke has been standing independently for a while, but now she can do it for however long she wants to. She always so proud of herself for standing!

On December 19th, Brooke took her first steps! We were at Chris's parents' house celebrating an early Christmas, and she walked 2 or 3 steps several times. After taking those initial steps, she didn't do it again for about 4 days, but now she will walk up to about 8 steps at at time. She is the youngest walker we've ever had.

It's been a while since I've had a beginning walker, and Brenson was always cautious about it. Brooke tries to pull up and walk just about anywhere, so we've had lots of spills and bumps and bruises. On December 14th, she fell and got her first black eye. Poor baby :-(.

She cried for just a minute, but it didn't get her down long. In fact, I was surprised when it bruised because she really didn't act very hurt at all!

After about 5 days, it was pretty much healed. There was just a little yellow bruising left.

We have gotten the babies adjusted at the chiropractor every month since they were 2 weeks old. We truly believe in the benefits of chiropractic care, and plan to keep up with getting them adjusted regularly. I think it's especially important now that Brooke is falling all the time. 

Brooke doesn't mind getting adjusted, and will almost always fall asleep on the way home from her appointments. When she was younger, she would actually fall asleep during the adjustments!

This time, she did get a little scared when Dr. G laid her down on the adjustment table to check her hips. Brenson rushed right to her side to hold her hand.

Brecklyn does not generally like to be held by anyone but Momma or Daddy, so she has cried during her last several appointments. 

She's funny about it, though, because she will fuss a little, then calm down, then fuss a little more.

At the beginning of December, we went to a birthday party for some friends of ours who are twins who turned 8 years old. At the party, our friend Mark wanted to hold Brecklyn. As you can see from the look on her face, she was less than impressed. I love how she's looking at Chris like "Rescue me!" hahaha.

Brecklyn doesn't love for many people to hold her, and Momma is definitely her favorite person. Brooke, however, is a Daddy's girl all the way. When she cries out at night, Brooke wants Daddy to come hold her. She always crawls right up to him and wants to be held immediately when he walks in the door from work. This is yet another way in which she reminds us of Brianna. 

Daddy and Brooke . . . taking silly selfies!

Once in a while, I'll be out in the evenings and Chris will do bedtime by himself. On one day like this, I came home to find both babies crashed out on Daddy's lap. Spoiled baby girls :-).

The babies love Brianna and Brenson so much. Both of them have said "Anna", and their favorite place in the house to play is in Brianna and Brenson's room. Brecklyn, especially, will just watch the Bigs and giggle and carry on like they are the funniest people she's ever known. I love it!

Earlier this month, I took the three younger kids to Lowe's to buy a few Christmas gifts for Daddy. I decided I didn't want to mess with the stroller, so I put Brecklyn in the front and Brooke in the back of the cart. I wasn't sure how Brooke would do with so much "freedom", but she only stood up in the cart one time. I call that a WIN!

Brooke and Brecklyn are still going to cradle roll at church twice a week (Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings). They LOVE it and do great. They do tend to snatch things from one another and pull at each other's clothes and hair bows, but it's so sweet when they hold hands. Brooke says "bible" and Brecklyn folds her hands together when it's time to pray.

I mentioned above that the babies' favorite place to play is in Brianna and Brenson's room. I think this is because we are always very careful to keep the door to that room shut so they can't get in. There are just too many small toys and things that are not safe for them in there. If they see that door open, they will both make a beeline for the room, and we discovered this month that they are the same way about the bathroom. One day, someone left the bathroom door open, and it only took about 1.7 seconds for both of them to decide that the bathroom was exactly where they needed to be!


The babies are very much at that age where constant supervision and training is required. I can't take my eyes off of them for a second or they are into something. We had a pretty constant battle with the Christmas tree (with Brecklyn, especially), which isn't something I had experienced with Brianna and Brenson. While the Christmas tree and ornaments were always a big temptation for them, the gifts were never really an issue . . . except one day :-). I love the look on Brooke's face like "uh-oh!" haha. (The angle on this photo is weird because they had crawled back into a corner behind a recliner. I was taking it from above.)

I'm still using the pack-n-play (set up in our living room) when I need to get things done without the babies being into everything. For the most part, they do really well in it, but I don't use it every day or for more than about 45 minutes (max) at a time. Last week, I was trying to get the Christmas tree taken down, and the girls decided to dump an entire tube of glass ornaments, complete with ornaments hooks. Eeeep! So, I put them in the pack-n-play for their own safety while I cleaned up the mess (no broken ornaments, thankfully). They made me laugh crawling and rolling all over each other!

Sorry the photos are blurry . . . too much movement! Brecklyn loves to wrestle and rough house, so she was having a ball rolling all over Brooke. Don't worry, Brooke does her fair share of rolling and crawling on Brecklyn, too!

A few more things about Brooke:

She is definitely a Daddy's girl, but when she was sick earlier this month it was "Momma, momma, momma" all the time! She has four teeth that she loves to show off with a big, cheesy grin. She learned to blow kisses, and we're working on pointing out hair, eyes, nose, mouth, and ears. She gets mouth and ears part of the time. She still has super sensitive skin and the sweetest little dimples when she smiles.

Brooke is a risk-taker, and is always wanting to get down off of the couch or living room chairs by herself. She does a really good job by turning on her tummy and sliding down. She has gotten really wild on the changing pad when getting her diaper or clothes changed, and one day she rolled off the changing pad onto the ground! I was right there and my hand was even on her leg, but she just slipped right off. I was horrified, but thankfully she was okay. Since then, I will pop her leg if she starts getting wild, and she will generally calm right down. If she is tired, she is a giggle box and it's hilarious. She will just giggle and giggle over nothing (she comes by it honest . . . I'm the same way!) She has started pulling at my hair while she's nursing. I kind of hate this, so I'll hold her hand to keep it still. She gives the best kisses and hugs and is still very affectionate. We just love her to pieces.

A few more things about Brecklyn:

Brecklyn will rarely repeat any words or sounds when we ask her to, but she will often pop out with things on her own. One day, Brenson was "baaaaa"ing like a sheep, and Brecklyn said, "Baaaaa!" She has two teeth . . . one on the bottom and one on the top, both on the left side. This is so strange to me as all of the other kids got their two bottom teeth first, then their two top teeth. Her smile looks funny with only one top tooth, but hopefully the other one will come in soon! She can blow kisses and loves to "razz".

I sometimes call Brecklyn "feisty pants" as she has quite the little temper on her. She's even started rolling on the floor when she cries sometimes. I think I've said before that she laughs hard and she cries hard. She also gets wild on the changing pad, so she gets the occasional leg pop. She doesn't like to snuggle but loves to be held. She loves books and stuffed animals and melts our hearts with her little laugh.

I just can't express the joy that these little ladies bring to our lives. The past 11 months have been such a blessing!

Brooke, Brecklyn

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