Roman James @ 17 Months

October 6, 2014

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A lot has happened since last time. I’ll never remember all of it, so I’m just going to pick up with where we are now.

Growth & Appearance: You’re huge. Lifting you and carrying you have become downright painful. You are 28 pounds of solid rock. I’m not sure how tall you are, but you’re tall. Sometimes it seems like you grow another inch taller each night. You wear a 2T in most clothes, but some of them are getting tight. You wear a size 7 in shoes. You have a lot of teeth, at least 16 so far. All of your front teeth are in (top & bottom) and you have several molars now, too.

You had your first haircut which definitely took you from the little baby into the big boy category. Until now, your hair has been completely white-blond. Recently, I’ve noticed a few dirty-blond patches coming in, in the back. My hair went from light blonde to dirty-blonde, and eventually to brown. Will you follow suit?

You still have the brightest, bluest eyes — they must be here to stay. We went to lunch with your Pop-pop (my father) yesterday and as I was talking to him, I realized that your eyes are nearly carbon copies of his.

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Sleeping: At night you typically sleep from 8:30 PM to 7 AM . Then you take a nap around 11 AM. The nap can last anywhere from 45 minutes to three hours. When you have a shorter nap you are way tired come late afternoon and it stinks because you just won’t take a second nap anymore. You sleep straight through the night most nights — HALLELUJAH! — except when you are teething or sick, in which case you can be up anywhere from once to a million times.

We’ve eliminated nursing except for nap/bedtime. It’s such a part of your routine that you just don’t want to go to sleep without it. We once went three days without nursing, but then you got sick and I felt so bad and it was the only thing that soothed you. So, here we are at seventeen months, still nursing twice a day. Each session is, however, super-short. I’m talking maybe a minute on each side? It’s most definitely a comfort thing for you at this point and sooner or later I am going to have to make the final call.

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Talking: This is the area where we’re seeing the most rapid change at the moment. Your vocabulary is literally growing daily now. The words that you say clearly are:

  • Papa
  • Mama
  • Bella
  • Hi
  • Bye-bye
  • Uh-oh
  • Whale
  • Ball
  • Balloon
  • Spoon
  • Deer
  • Bear
  • Bath
  • Hat
  • Baby
  • Ear

The animal sounds that you can do clearly and on demand are:

  • Dog
  • Monkey
  • Cow
  • Owl
  • Cat
  • Sheep
  • Wolf
  • Elephant
  • Bee
  • Lion

Your body parts that you can identify on demand are:

  • Hair
  • Head
  • Eyebrows
  • Eyes
  • Ears
  • Nose
  • Mouth
  • Hand
  • Finger
  • Bellybutton
  • Feet
  • Toes

There are a bunch of other words that you say that I can’t quite understand yet. As for comprehension, you basically know what everything in the house is. I can pretty much ask you to go get any household item and you quickly retrieve it. Your capacity for learning and understanding truly amazes me.

You also sing the alphabet song now! You start with “A” and then just put in a bunch of random sounds where the letters should be. It’s the sweetest thing. Oh, and you count, too. Whenever I count objects, you count them after to me in my sing-song counting way. Except once again, you use random sounds where the numbers are supposed to be. So. flipping. adorable.

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Development: As far as physical development goes, you’re a whiz. You walk, and even run, as gracefully as I’ve seen any toddler. You climb stairs with ease. You are, however, very cautious. When climbing up or down, you get down on your bum to avoid falls. You recently tried to jump a couple of times, that was funny. You don’t have the momentum to get yourself off of the ground, but you’re close and it is really funny to watch you try.

You are very coordinated and can throw a ball (or any other object) like its nobody’s business. You try to use a spoon on occasion, but that usually ends in a mess, so we stick to mostly finger foods for now.

You can also be extremely clumsy. Even though you are really good at walking, climbing, and running — sometimes you throw caution to the wind, especially in the house where you’re in your comfort zone. You fall down a lot, trip over things, and constantly bump your poor little head. You usually have at least one bruise and one scrape on you at all times. It breaks my heart every damned time!

You love to help. You retrieve things, put things in the trash, and “help” me with sweeping. I can’t wait until you’re ready for chores.

Favorites: Pasta is your favorite food. You’d eat it for every meal. You also love your sippy cup and ask to have it refilled all day long. You love to drink from a straw. When we go out to eat you always fill up on your drink and it’s no use fighting it because you refuse your food and reach for your drink until you get it. Since you’re generally a good eater, and since you’re such a good boy in restaurants, I usually just oblige your straw/drink obsession.

Curious George is your favorite show. You love that little monkey so much. You also love cats. One day we were out walking and a friendly neighborhood cat came over to your stroller and allowed me to pet him. I think that was the first time that you’ve seen a cat in person. Since then you’ve been cat-crazy and you start meowing with excitement anytime we see a cat in books, on TV, in the store, etc. You’re little “meow” is the sweetest thing and sounds exactly like a real kitten.

Your favorite place is to be is outdoors. You love to explore every little detail of nature. You love to bring me gifts like flowers, stones, and fallen leaves.

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Dislikes & Behavior: You are still an incredibly well-behaved boy. I can take you anywhere and I love that. You have, however, had your first few tantrums. Luckily they’ve been at home. The common denominators seem to be that you are overtired and that I take something dangerous away from you that you wanted to play with. That said, you’ve also had two complete meltdowns for no apparent reason. Those really threw me and your Papa for a loop. In hindsight, I think you were just way overtired.

You’ve become a lot more clingy with me. Throughout the day, I find you hanging on me, crawling on me, etc. Sometimes it’s nice to have the cuddles — I cherish those — but a lot of the time you just want my attention. You’ll climb on me and as soon as I scoop you up, you’re off again. It’s a bit maddening, really. You like to be the center of attention. You’ll play independently a few times a day, but you’re going through a needy stage. I’m working on practicing patience.

We’ve had some issues with bath-time lately. Since you’ve been old enough to get in the big bath, I’ve always given you your baths at night as a part of your bedtime routine. Then recently, you realized that you could dip your head underwater and the problems began. You would dip your head under and drink the bath water — bubbles and all. Not just once, you would keep doing it over and over. Because you are fairly tired by that time of day, it was hard to redirect your attention and get you to listen well. For a few nights, it was just a wasteful disaster ending in two-minute baths. On top of everything, your Papa and I are just too tired by the end of the day to deal with that. So, I decided to start bathing you every other day and in the morning rather than at night. So far, the new plan is working and we haven’t had any issues adjusting to the new bedtime routine.

You’re temper is developing and you have a real rebellious streak in you. Sometimes it is alarming to see how quickly you go from fine to furious. I’m quite certain that you’re anger is just frustration. You’re on the cusp of being able to communicate with us and I know that must be frustrating. I try very hard to translate your cues and figure out what you want to alleviate your frustrations, but we are a work in progress.


Overall, you are just the best. I couldn’t ask for a sweeter or smarter boy. When I dreamed of becoming a mother — you are everything that I dreamed of. Well, that’s all for this update, my little love. Thank you for bearing with me these past few months as I’ve been sick, cranky, and not the funnest Mama to be around. I love you to the moon & back, always.

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3 Comments

  • Tina

    Really love these fall photos… can’t wait to take some of Lyla. It’s so wonderful how in depth you document him growing up, I wish I had done that with Lyla when she was little!

  • Julie Arnhold

    Such a beautiful post, Dena! Isn’t it crazy how much they change during this stage?! Aubrey can count to 5 and says “Oh, no!” whenever she drops something haha it’s too cute. She also has mastered the art of throwing tantrums, and clinging to my legs while I cook is a daily occurrence. I now blog at night before bed, because I literally cannot accomplish anything during the day and lately she has been giving up her naps. It’s an amazing time, but it certainly comes with challenges! Hope you’re feeling better! xo

  • Jordan

    Great photos. He looks so big! The clinginess and tantrums just never ends, does it!? My daughter started that months ago, and she still holds onto me like glue. I guess I better appreciate it while I can! :)

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