A portrait of Rory, once a week, every week in 2014.

This week was Rory's first time meeting my siblings, and second time seeing my parents. It was so exciting to see my brothers and sisters obsessing over my smiley boy, but even more exciting was how Rory took to each and every one of them. How amazing is family?

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A portrait of Rory, once a week, every week in 2014.

This week we flew across the country to see my family in Falls Church and so we got to explore the DC area and meet all sorts of people, including Kermit at the Smithsonian.

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3 months old

Rory James,

Three months old! We've made it through the "fourth trimester"! And I can easily tell because your miniature personality is starting to shine. You have never been so much fun! You are just so interested in everything. You have a high breathy voice and each noise you make is timid and deliberate, though you are mostly very quiet and observant. Days will go by without you making a single sound except to cry, then out of the blue you are the biggest blabber mouth. I love it when you talk. I love love love love love it. Ask your dad. When he comes home from school he'll ask if you've been talkative. Most days I sadly say no, but on the days you talk I just get so excited. It makes my day so much more interesting. On your talkative days you'll mimic me. I could sit and listen to your sweet high voice say "goh" and "bah" all day long.

You are developing a shy side. You are still extremely smiley, but sometimes you'll smile and turn away or bury your head in my chest. You seem so aware of what's going on. I forget all the time that you're just a baby, because you just look like you understand everything.

Suddenly you were swatting at objects, and then you started grabbing things over night. One day, you were waving your closed fists around like usual and the next you were able to grab toys and pull them toward your mouth. Your feet are really coordinated too. You can catch dangling toys with your toes. You love your feet. Your feet are like your two best friends. In the mornings when you wake up, you are just as happy to see your own two feet as you are to see me. You do your best to grab them whenever you get a chance. Sometimes you touch things so delicately. You'll pinch my wedding ring between your fingers while you frown and focus really hard. I caught you one time gently fiddling with your raccoon's tiny ear.

You've become obsessed with hands. Your hands, my hands... you just love to grab fingers. Lately you've been munching on my knuckle. You pull my hand toward your mouth and will somehow find my pointer finger. You look up at me and smile and drool with it in your mouth, as if you somehow know it belongs to me.

We are finally figuring you out. I can tell if you're hungry, bored, or tired by the way you act - which is an awesome development because now I can help you out before you even start to cry. Your tired signs are the easiest to figure out. Obviously you yawn, but you also talk louder and louder and louder. You'll suck on your fist while you complain. Once I pick you up and start walking around the apartment you become quiet. All you want is to be held. I turn off the lights and draw the curtains while I make laps around the apartment, walking and bouncing you while you stare at what's around us and you eventually fall asleep.

You smile in your sleep. That makes me so happy. That's like validation that I'm doing okay and you have happy memories to dream about. Though sometimes you wake up whimpering as if you were having a nightmare.

Almost every day I'll sit with you in front of the mirror. You are becoming so interactive! Now that you can support your own weight with ease I'll stand you up on the floor and let you dance and fidget while you watch yourself. The past few days you've tried to reach out and touch yourself and are obviously shocked when your hand hits the hard surface of the mirror. You love to smile at yourself, and when you're talkative you'll oooh and ahhh right there for me in the mirror. Can you say adorable??

Suddenly you are drooling. Drooool everywhere. We'll find a giant wet spot on your pants and have to sniff it to see if it's poop or drool. There's a string of drool dripping down your chin in most of the latest pictures I've taken of you. It's probably because you're starting to put so much stuff in your mouth now.

This month we've really seriously started implementing a bedtime routine and lately we're making it earlier and earlier. You used to stay up with us until we went to bed, which is about 11 or 12, but now we are trying to get you in bed by 9:30. Bed time is my favorite part of the day because we do it all together. We start with a diaper change, and then we lotion you up (because lately your poor legs are getting dry from this dumb Rexburg air) and put on your jammies. Then we'll sit on our bed with you in our lap and read 2 or 3 books. We love the Elephant and Piggie books. At first I was skeptical that you'd sit still long enough to get through an entire story because, you know, you are three months old. But you sit so still and are so patient and attentive and you'll occasionally reach out to touch the pictures. My word boy, are you 3 months old or 3 years old?! Then we'll sing to you while we swaddle you up and your dad will bounce you to sleep. You still wake up once or twice to eat, but you're really good about sleeping until at least 8:30.

You're old enough now to sit in the Bumbo, though it's a tight fit. You do really well in it for about 10 minutes and then you get tired and you start to slouch. Even when your head is at knee-level you don't complain. You just stare at us while you wait for someone to fix you.

You're getting a bald spot from rubbing the back of your head against your mattress. I think your hair is starting to thin out. It's so depressing. We finally got rid of your cradle cap. Someone suggested that we scrub your scalp with vegetable oil, so we did and you stunk for like 4 days no matter how much we tried to wash the smell out. But it worked! Once I combed all the flakes out we never saw that crumbly yellow stuff again. You've had one eye that's been consistently goopy for the past week or so. One morning you woke up and it was so crusted over you couldn't open it. It's getting better, but it annoys the heck out of me.

Your neck control is near perfect. After every diaper change, we'll pull you up to a sitting position by your hands.  I started doing that weeks ago and I didn't realize your dad did that every time too. Speaking of diaper changes, you only pee on me like once a week! So much better than when you were a brand new baby. Well done.

While I nurse you you swat at the air. Your little fists never stop moving. You smack my face all the time and I usually have scratch marks on my neck. Other times you hug my boob as though your protecting it. And sometimes you weave your arms through my shirt and clasp your hands together.

Most of your 3-6 month clothing is awkwardly too big. Most your 0-3 month stuff is too small. All of it is too short. You wear size 2 shoes and have been in size 2 diapers for weeks. At your last doctor's appointment you were 13 lbs 14 oz and 24 3/4 inches tall, but that was a while ago. 85th percentile in weight. 98th percentile in height. Ahem, giant.

We have made it through all 3 hours of church every since we've moved. We usually sit in the very back of sacrament meeting. By that point I've already nursed you in the mother's lounge and you've usually just woken up from a nap so you are incredibly playful. Sitting on that back bench, just the 3 of us, trying to stifle our laughter when you fart really loudly or smile a whole lot, that's got to be the happiest I'll ever be in my life. While it's happening, I just keep thinking to myself, remember this. 

I love you bud and I can't wait to see what you do next!

See all "letters to Rory".



getting dressed for the day means

taking off my glasses and putting in contacts,
re-doing my top bun,
switching sweatpants,
replacing my 4-day old milk stained sports bra,
changing into another of Andy's large tshirts,
and occasionally brushing my teeth.

motherhood is glaaamourous.

oy vey.



A portrait of Rory, once a week, every week in 2014.

This week we started a bedtime routine with Rory. I feed him around 9:00pm and change his diaper. We lotion up and put on our jammies. Then Andy joins us to read a few books. Rory is so attentive and patient. Every once in a while he'll reach to touch the book, but he's mostly just content to sit in our laps and listen. Then while Rory gets swaddled, we'll sing a few songs. After a quick kiss from me, Andy bounces him until his eyes are closed and then lays him in his crib. He still wakes up once or twice at night to eat, but lately he's slept until anywhere from 8:30a - 10:00a. This bedtime routine has become the best part of my day and I love that we do it all together. I'm actually starting to feel like a legitimate parent. 

See other portraits HERE



A portrait of Rory, once a week, every week in 2014.

Suddenly Rory can grab his feet, swat at toys, and aim things towards his mouth. I swear it happened overnight. He ain't a newborn no more!

See other portraits HERE.