Monday, August 21, 2017

Forrest is FIVE Years Old

Dear Forrest,

You are now FIVE years old! For an unexplained reason, your turning five years old is quite hard on Mama. Perhaps it is because your lingering strands of babyhood is now faded away, and transformed into the next stage of your life: childhood. The folks are not kidding when they warned Mama and Daddy that the first five years of your life will flash by before their eyes. Mama desperately wants to hold on to those moments from when you are little. At the same time, it is a beautiful, amazing thing to witness you becoming into a person you have always strove to be.

Dinosaurs continue to be your source of obsession. You can expertly name each dinosaur without failing to miss a single pronunciation, and dazzle people with your intimate knowledge about them. You have piles of books about dinosaurs on your bed, and get upset if Mama tries to relocate your books! You love reading the books, sounding out dinosaur names, and sharing facts with anybody who is sitting nearby you. It amazes everybody how well-versed you are on the topic of dinosaurs. You recently attended a dinosaur camp, and loved your experience there! You love playing dinosaur pirates with Frank, and use your rich imagination to explore a humid jungle filled with razor-sharp clawed dinosaurs! At this rate, you will probably grow up to be a paleontologist.

You love to read. It warms Mama's heart so much to watch you grow to be a bookworm just like how she had been growing up! This love of reading began when you turned 4, and blew everybody away by being able to read! Of course, it is not so surprising that you are able to read this early with closed captioning constantly streaming on TV, and having Daddy read you books every night before you go to bed. This is where a lot of your imagination has grown from--from your love of reading. This is something we hope you will continue with your love of reading into the rest of your life.

School is one of your favorite places. You're always asking to go school, even on the weekends, and it makes Mama and Daddy laugh. It makes us so happy that you love learning, and are so full of enthusiasm when it comes to being in school.

You recently completed your second summer of school, and we love how you came home with art projects as well as facts that you had learned from that day! Your teacher had always been amazed by how much you knew about sharks, and ocean life, which was a topic of learning at your summer school.

You are enrolled into a charter program, LEADS, for this fall. Mama and Daddy have decided to put you in the second year of 4K, not because you had significant struggles with learning in 4K class last year, but because they want you to be the oldest among your peers to ensure that your maturity level is up to par among your peers. This program consists of inquiry-based learning method that encourages their students to be critical thinkers, and to learn collaboratively. Mama and Daddy are excited to see where you will go with this learning based program! Currently, you've mastered coloring inside the lines, cutting out pictures, and writing. You are able to ride your tricycle without any struggle. We are confident that you are at the point where you should be equal with your peers.

It has been nearly over half of a year that you've been rooming with Frank. You absolutely love sleeping on the top bunk! Since day one, you insist on sleeping on the top, and showed no fear of height. Your favorite thing about the bunk beds is that you are able to get Daddy to drape blankets around the lower half of the bunk to build a fort to create a ship that you are a captain of! You and Frank get along pretty well as roommates. It is not often that you two erupt into arguments when you are together in the same room.

However, outside of that room is entirely another story! Mama usually makes you apologize, and hug each other, much to your dismay, but it is good to strengthen your bond with Franklin, and to learn that pride is not the answer. After all, once we are gone, and your brothers will be all you have left. It is so important to establish a loving relationship with your brothers, since they look up so much to you. Sometimes, it can be a struggle for you to keep your temper in the check when Franklin hits you, because Franklin is still learning boundaries, and how to behave properly around others. When you respond properly to his misbehavior, it is a great source of pride for us to see that you are learning as well with how to treat others when they don't treat you well.

You love dressing up as a pirate captain, a dinosaur hunter, or a professional entertainment wrestler! Your imagination is so rich, so creative, and holds so much stories that you love to act out. More often than not, you bring Frank into your world, and it makes him so happy to be a part of your adventures. You enjoy building with duplo blocks, and legos. When it comes to art, you love creating dinosaurs, and monsters. It makes us laugh when you tell us that you remember this or that from when you were a baby, not because we know you really don't remember those situations, but because of your rich details to those memories. We love hearing what you have to share, and encourage you to feel comfortable to include us in your world.

As a big brother, you are wonderful, and loving. With Fox being our newest addition to the family, you took on the role as a big brother (again) with a such great stride! You love helping out by giving diapers, or a fresh onesie to Mama. You are full of questions when it comes to nursing, and loves to let Mama know when Fox is crying. You ask to hold Fox when you have a chance to, and you make sure that Fox is protected from Frank's well intended (but not so gentle) pats. It is not very surprising that you are not having any trouble adjusting to having a second little brother! We couldn't be any more proud of you than we already are with how gentle you are toward your littlest brother.

You are slowly being night trained. It is no easy feat, and even so, we are not in a big rush to have you to be out of pull-ups. We believe in allowing you boys to learn at your own pace for the most part. You're transitioning into big boy clothes! You are no longer in the toddler sizes, which is one of the few reasons why Mama is sad about you leaving the last stages of toddlerhood, and you are now entering a big boy clothes department! Soon before mama knows it, you will be sporting your own style, and expressing how you want to dress, which is pretty cool, because it means your personality is out there for the world to see. 

You are gradually getting better with eating. We suspect your pickiness with food is your hesitation toward trying new food due to your peanut allergy and some of it is also because you are, well, a kid! Your picky-eating nature is still evident with how you have your preferred food, which isn't necessarily healthy, and we are encouraging you constantly to try new food. 9 times out of ten, you are usually very willing to sample new food, and not turn your nose up to them. Dinner time is less of a battle with you these days. It is quite funny. When you are eating great at dinner, then Franklin usually is the one that refuses food! It seems that you both take turns with picky eating!

You are starting to be more assertive with your food allergy. You are able to announce to people that you have an allergy to peanuts, and ask every time if this or that is safe for you to eat. Sometimes you even ask Mama or Daddy if the food in our house is safe! Silly you, of course, it is always safe here at home for you. We couldn't be any more pleased with how you are able to stand up for yourself, and understand the severity of your allergy. It helps Mama to worry a lot less too! You are so strong-willed, and assertive, which comes as a great asset to you being proactive with your allergy. We believe it will take you to far places someday as long as you use your traits for good.

You had your doctor appointment today, and received two last booster vaccinations. You handled it like a champ. You were told that you won't need any shots until you turn eleven years old, what a relief, right?! You weighed at 39 pounds, measured at 35 inches and half, and checked out wonderfully. 

It is truly a joy to have you in our lives. You are so much fun, and bring that into our home. We don't go a day without laughing, because of what you have said about something. We look forward to what you bring to year 5!


Mama, Daddy, Franklin, and Fox 

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Fox is TWO Months Old

Dear Fox, 

You are two months old! You've graduated from wearing newborn clothes to clothes size ranging from 0-3 months to 3 months. Just like the other two boys, there is some sadness in putting away your newborn clothes. Mama is considering about taking several of each boys' favorite clothes to be stored away, then turning them into quilts. 

Mama is relieved to find a bunch of sleeping sacks for you to have when it is time for you to transition to your crib, which will happen when you are between 5-6 months old, or when you outgrow your bassinet. Unlike your older brothers, you will not be having blankets to sleep with in your crib, because the recent studies have shown that babies don't fare well with blankets until they are a year old. It will be an interesting learning experience to figure out how to keep you warm inside your sleeper sacks. 

You recently had a trip to Dr. Karbon's office, because Daddy and Mama noticed that you had a white blister cap on top of your big toe, and suspected an ingrown nail! You didn't like having your big toe inspected. Sure enough, Dr. Karbon confirmed that you, in fact, did have an ingrown nail. 

Apparently, it is quite common in newborn babies to have ingrown nails, because their nails are so thin, and it can interfere with how it grows with the skin. Who knew?! 

Anyway, Dr. Karbon assured that all was well, and that the nail was growing into the right direction. Whew! Mama and Daddy were told to be on an outlook for any signs of infection, and to call back if anything had changed with the ingrown nail. 

You are clocking at 10 pounds! It puts you at 33 percentile of weight. You may be small, but you are turning into a chunkster! You are still a good eater, and make it clear when you are done by pushing yourself off. It is amazing to see much of strength in something so small. You are not as small as Frank, and not quite as large as Forrest at this age! Mama still thinks you resemble Forrest the most.

You continue to lift your head, and prefer to propel your skinny legs off anything. It is obvious that you prefer to be in a standing position, but with you being so young yet, and becoming fatigued easily; it is not very often that you are able to keep yourself upright for so long. You are my most restless baby. The only time you are not wiggling around is when you are asleep. During your awake moments, your legs and arms are always shaking, wiggling, and grooving! It is very rare that you would be content with sitting still while watching the world unfold around you. With you always moving, it is almost as if you are impatient to be able to join with the world, and be on the go!

You're quite colicky. The witching hours begin at 4 pm, and usually don't end until between 9-11 pm. Fortunately, your crying fits are getting less, and less these days. You no longer feel a need to be held in the middle of the night to go back to sleep, and your crying fits has ceased in the night. However, Mama and Daddy are expecting this to resurge with your regressions yet to come. Nonetheless, it is a relief to have your crying fits to stop at the night, and to be able to put you down in your bassinet without you erupting into tears. Your colic should fade away between 3-4 months.

Your feedings are usually between 1-2 am, and 4-5 am in the night, which is not so quite bad, and it is nice to be able to just wake twice to nurse. By your 4-5 am feeding, you are usually ready to be up for the day! You do go back to sleep with a lot of holding, and prompting. Hopefully in time, you will learn to return to sleep after your 4-5 am feeding, and rest for at least an hour or two before the big brothers wake up for the day! It looks like you will be following your older brothers' tendency to get up EARLY for the day.

Unfortunately, with you turning 2 months old, this means you will be getting your first set of vaccinations, and it may or may not put you in a bad mood. You won't be getting your vaccinations by yourself though. Forrest also will need his 5-year old vaccinations, and he will be with you in a solidarity on that day! Hopefully you both won't be feeling out of sorts after getting your shots, but it all depends! It will be great to find out how much you've grown height-wise, head measurement, and weight.

You are settling into our family rather wonderfully. The older brothers are still fascinated by you, and they always want to hold you. If they are unable to hold you, then they are touching you. You are never without kisses, and hugs! They love helping you with your baths, but not so much with throwing your stinky poo-poo diapers in the trash. It will be so much fun to see you finally walking, and running to keep up with your older brothers just like how Mama had envisioned when she first got pregnant with you.

Mama is looking forward to buying the books from Shutterfly soon! With every boy, there is two books called The Day You Were Born, and Pregnancy Journal. It is a tradition that she has kept with each boy, and naturally, you will be receiving your books soon!

You are such a blessing, and darling. We look forward to all the new changes with you in this upcoming month!


Mama, Daddy, Forrest, & Frank