James @ 1 Month + A Dekker Family Update

posted by Andrea | 08/14/2015

James is officially 1 month old today — and even for someone who doesn’t particularly love the newborn phase of life, that month went by pretty fast!

As I mentioned before my summer blogging break, I’m not planning to do the same type of monthly updates I did with Nora and Simon. Instead, I’m just going to share more of a “Dekker Family Update” once each month — probably coinciding with James’ monthly milestones.

I’ll share a few pictures and updates of each kiddo, any big news from Dave and myself, and any house projects or life goals we’re working towards. Hopefully, it will be a simple, concise, and fun way to keep you updated without requiring multiple posts each month!

Here with go…

JAMES @ 1 MONTH:

1 month

James’ only skills so far are moving his head from side to side when he’s on his tummy and lifting his head to look around when he’s being held. He also excels at eating, burping, sleeping, pooping, crying, stretching and looking cute.

He’s a tiny little peanut (still wearing newborn clothes that neither of my other 2 kids ever fit in!) but he’s gaining weight and growing like crazy, so mama is not worried at all.

He is eating and sleeping really well (at least in my opinion) and although he does cry a lot, he’s always happy if he’s being held 🙂

So far, he’s the best napper of all my kids, often taking 3 or 4 naps a day, with a long 3-hour afternoon nap that has been coinciding nicely with Simon’s nap (glorious)!! I realize his “schedule” will be constantly changing for the next year, but it’s been nice to have a relatively good sleeper again!

James is not a huge fan of the bouncer or swing yet (and he absolutely HATES his carseat)… but he loves my Boba baby carrier and the Moby wrap, so I wear him A LOT during the day. Part of me feels like I’d rather not get into the habit of letting him fall asleep in the carrier all the time — but the other part of me likes the fact that I have both my hands free to deal with Nora and Simon!

 

SIMON @ 17 MONTHS:

Simon is proving to be just as stubborn and strong-willed as Nora — but with less crying, less tantrums, less screaming, and a lot more smiling. He knows what he wants and he’s not going to stop until he gets it.

He’s one of the cutest little boys I know, and has perfected the art of “turning on the charm” when he needs to.

He’s having so much fun walking, running, swimming, and playing outside (his favorite place to be). He has mastered going up and down stairs, walking on his tiptoes, climbing anything that can be climbed, and splashing in the bathtub (his 2nd favorite place to be). He knows a bunch of animal sounds and will point to various body parts when you ask, “Simon, where is your ________?”

He still honestly doesn’t say ONE word yet — which is insane for me to process, because Nora was basically speaking in complete sentences at this point. Thankfully, Simon seems to fully understand everything we say to him. He’s also very good at getting his point across by a series of different grunts, pointing, nodding yes or no, and using a few “signs” that we taught him via a baby sign language class I took online.

I realize he will talk eventually — but I’m SO anxious for him to be able to communicate better. I know how fun it is to hear Nora go on and on about various subjects and I can’t wait to listen to all Simon’s future conversations too!

 

NORA @ 3.5 YEARS:

Nora wants to be 4 SOOOOOOO badly.

Actually, she really wants to be 5 so she can say she’s a “full hand” but I told her that 4 needs to come first. She asks almost every single day when she’ll be 4, and she literally had a complete meltdown the other day when she realized that no matter how old she got, her cousin is always going to be older than her.

She talks about “going to school” all the time, and I think she is mentally ready… but not quite there emotionally. Plus, her birthday misses the preschool cut-off date, so she’ll be home with mom and the boys for another year. I realize I could send her to 3-school if I wanted to… but there’s really no part of me that wants to load up 3 kids multiple times a week just to bring Nora to 3-school for an hour or so.

We’re looking into different playgroup options for her (and have some play dates set up with neighbors) — because that’s what she REALLY needs to work on. Just learning to play with other kids without getting scared or shy or starting to cry incessantly because someone looked at her the wrong way 🙂

Other than that, she’s the same old spunky, smart, stinker Nora that she’s always been!

Her favorite activities are riding her “big girl bike”, playing outside, swimming, playing in her kitchen upstairs, playing school, playing dress-up, playing babies… and singing. Boy does that girl LOVE to sing. She frequently has mini “concerts” for our family and sings from the steps off the living room while we all sit on the couch. She says, “attention ladies and gentlemen, I’m going to sing _______ for you now” and then belts out her favorite songs while holding a random book, pretending like she’s reading the words.

Nora loves her brothers and is usually pretty helpful around the house. It’s amazing how much she can do by herself at only 3.5 — just think of everything she can do once she’s finally 4!

nora makes the rules

FAMILY:

In general, this summer has been very relaxing for our family. Aside from one local vacation with Dave’s family, we have been home all summer long — which is what we like.

We worked on a ton of house and yard projects in June, and then enjoyed 2 weeks of “extra” free time in the beginning of July as we awaited James’ arrival.

Once he finally decided to join our family, I enjoyed another week of rest and relaxation at home while Dave took the older 2 kids to the cottage with his family. James and I went to the cottage for a couple of days, but then came home again to peace and quiet. It was REALLY hard for me to let go and leave the older kids, but I’m so thankful for the one-on-one time I had to relax at home with James.

We’re currently on a little break from house and yard projects right now, but hopefully we’ll cross a few more things off our list this fall.

I’ve been dutifully plugging away at my digital photo books and have everything up-to-date through the beginning of August. My current system of adding the previous month’s photos at the beginning of the current month seems to be working really well for me, and it seems much less overwhelming than some of the other methods I’ve tried over the years.

As much as I hate to admit it, the lazy days of summer are almost over for our family. Dave starts school meetings in 2 weeks and is back in school full time the day after Labor Day. That means no more pool-side parties with both mom and dad. No more leisurely afternoon naps (at least not for the grownups), no more sleeping in and getting donuts for breakfast. It’s almost time to get back to reality… and I have to admit, I’m not quite ready for it yet!

I’m nervous as to how things will go with 3 kids home all day. I know it will take a bit to figure out our new normal and develop some type of routine — but I know we’ll get there eventually.

It’s been a fabulous summer, probably one of the most relaxing summers I’ve personally had in many years.

I’m so thankful for the time we had together at home this summer, I’m thankful for a helpful husband, for 3 healthy kids, and for a quick recovery for me after James was born.

I know the next 11 months will most likely fly by… and that I’m supposed to “enjoy every moment”. However, right now, my main goal is just to survive every moment 🙂

107Shares

Filed under: LifeFamily

Leave a comment

23 comments

  1. Janice

    08/19/2015

    You amaze me, girl! ☺️

    [Reply]

  2. Ellen

    08/18/2015

    I saw others had left comments about programs for helping with children who need a bit of extra help getting started (talking or other) but I thought you might like reading Chelsea’s (Two Twenty One) post about her job and what can be done – she also recently (in a post about organizing kids’ toys) mentioned a few ideas for helping kids learn to talk… I don’t think you have to worry about Simon at all, but he might need some extra help. http://www.twotwentyone.net/2015/01/developmental-therapy/

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks for sharing Ellen!

    [Reply]

  3. Lane @ Tiny Signs

    08/17/2015

    Congrats on baby James, Andrea! He is just adorable and I love the bath picture of him and his “frog legs” as we called them in those early days. So cute!

    Glad to hear the signing has come in handy with Simon too. 🙂

    Best,
    Lane

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Lane 🙂

    [Reply]

  4. ShellyL

    08/17/2015

    You have the cutest kids ever! Please don’t ever stop sharing their pics and updates with us. I hope to still be reading when you’re posting teenage pics of these sweet kiddos. I love little Nora’s personality and cuteness and I’m falling in love with Simon’s sweet face too. He just gets cuter every day. James has that “little old man” look that some baby boys have, which is precious. I’m sure he will charm all of us too. I love the family updates and kid pics. It makes me feel like I’m catching up with a girlfriend. Thanks for sharing your family with us, Andrea. <3

    [Reply]

  5. Pixie508

    08/15/2015

    Our 3-school is at the end of our street, so location wise, it works out perfectly for us 🙂 He could go full time, but I’m not ready for that. I have him going 2 days a week (and will likely add a third at some point this year). I set it so that it works that’s he’s gone on days where I need to be doing work stuff, and his little brother will nap for the vast majority of the hours he’s gone. So, he’ll get some needed socialization and structure, and I’ll get a few hours during the week to get some work (and housework done) “kid-free”. Plus, I figure while the weather’s nice, I might walk to go get him – it’s about a mile round trip, so good exercise for me too!

    He’s so excited!

    [Reply]

  6. Julia K

    08/14/2015

    That was a lovely post to read Andrea. Congratulations on your beautiful family and I hope you settle into the new “normal” without too many hiccoughs.
    Just take each day as it comes.
    My youngest two were just reading over my shoulder and my son John said – “oh – Andrea has had her baby”. It sounded so matter of fact and funny coming from an eleven year old – as though he knows you personally. The kids are usually at school when I’m reading your blog but it is a Saturday morning here so they are home.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Julia! And I LOVE that your son so casually says “oh, she had her baby”. It sounds like we’re old friends 🙂

    Thanks for the smile!

    [Reply]

  7. Shawn

    08/14/2015

    Don’t worry about Simon’s speech. My first was very verbal, very early. My second, at 2, was only saying momma, dada, brubber (for her brother) and something that sounded like cookie. The doctor assured me repeatedly that she was fine and would talk when ready. Shortly after her second birthday she looked at me and said “love you momma”. She hasn’t shut up since then! She’s 25.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Shawn. I’m definitely not worried yet… more just anxious to talk with him. I know how fun it was hearing Nora learn all her new words and I want to experience that with Simon too!!

    [Reply]

  8. Emily

    08/14/2015

    Love the update on your family! Sounds like the Lord has blessed you with an awesome summer to enjoy your growing family. 🙂 Nora sounds just like my girls at that age and Simon and my Sam could grunt at each other all day and know what the other is saying! I love your perspective that he will talk when he’s ready. I am 2 1/2 weeks from my due date and those sweet pictures of James make me so excited! What a precious little guy!! You are an awesome mama to those sweet kiddos. 🙂

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yay — congrats on your baby-to-be as well! So excited for you!

    [Reply]

  9. Kristen @ Joyfully Thriving

    08/14/2015

    My husband started back to teaching this Wednesday (earliest ever for him) and I’m missing the opportunity to tag team and steal away for a quick power nap, too! Still, I’m thankful that you and I both get the wonderful blessing of having our husbands home for the summer. Truly, such a blessing! I’ll be praying for you as you transition to life at home with 3 little ones, but you’re right. Just take it one day at a time. That’s all any of us can do! 🙂

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    wow, that IS early… but I saw on Facebook that you are hanging up your “teacher hat” this year! That must be exciting, and scary, and overwhelming all at the same time?? Hope you enjoy your time at home!

    [Reply]

    Kristen @ Joyfully Thriving Reply:

    Yes, indeed! After 11 years of teaching, it’s time to stay home with Nathan for a bit! These little ones grow up so quickly that I don’t want to miss it. It’s what I’ve always hoped and prayed for, so am thankful for the opportunity to do so at last. Of course, the reality of the “days are long and years are short” is becoming clearer by the day! 🙂

    [Reply]

  10. JoAnn C.

    08/14/2015

    Thanks for sharing updates on your family. It’s hard to believe James is one month old already. I always enjoy these posts.

    Happy weekend, Andrea.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    I know… the month went really fast (which I think is a good thing!)

    [Reply]

  11. Mrs. Crackin' the Whip

    08/14/2015

    I love the life updates! It’s funny how each child is so different, isn’t it? But when they talk, the conversations sure are fun! Baby Crackin’ is current obsessed with Christmas. He talks about it every single day. He talks about the tree, the lights, the star, and presents, of course! He radiates happiness. His face absolutely glows and his smile is so bright. Good times! Children are amazing.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Yes, Nora knows her birthday is right before Christmas — so right now, she’s mainly just focused on her birthday, but after that’s over, Christmas is all she talks about too 🙂

    [Reply]

  12. Shelly Smith

    08/14/2015

    I wanted to share a little bit about our experience with a “slow to verbalize” boy (my first born!) He was like your Simon, being fully able to understand what we were saying and also communicating with us in his own ways (mostly sign language that I self-taught, like you!) But, he just never quite got the verbal communication going… UNTIL we started speech therapy provided FREE for him through “First Steps” (which is provided free of charge here in Indiana for kids under school age, in all areas of delay, including speech, OT, PT and probably more I don’t know about!) It was a wonderful experience for all of us (the therapist came to our home, which greatly helped since our second son was born 20 months after the first and was a newborn at the time we started therapy!) You might talk to your Pediatrician or look to see what your state offers. Even though I was never “worried” that he might not learn to talk, it was nice to have help and get him going before he got to school age where the difference might be more noticeable!! Today he is a “normal” 12 year old who is still on the quiet side (just his personality!) but fully verbal and sweet as can be! I can see that your Simon is also a sweet AND adorable little boy!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Shelly, We actually used a similar program for Nora when she was refusing to eat. It was a free local program for our county. Unfortunately, it didn’t work for us, but they were a great “first step” for us, and they referred us to the organization that ultimately did end up helping. So it was definitely a positive experience for us.

    [Reply]

  13. Paulette

    08/14/2015

    Isn’t that the TRUTH! (…surviving every moment). Girl, I honestly don’t know how you do all you do. Your little family is completely adorable.

    [Reply]