Lindsay Sledge

a blog about life with Micah, Denver, Everett, and Presley the dog

Category: Letters to Everett

10 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

Happy 10 months to my littlest walker! I cannot believe it. A few days ago you started taking steps, and now you are walking halfway across rooms! WHAT IN THE WORLD?!! It’s hilarious, because you are so little and yet so determined. You use anything around you to pull up, and then you take off, typically with a dangerous object in your mouth. I thought this month would be about cruising and learning to steer walkers around corners, which you’ve become quite good at, but you took things a whole step further! Congrats on this walking milestone, Ev. You rock, and your dad and I are so proud of you.

Speaking of your dad, you said “Dad” for the first time this month! He was delighted to hear it, and we’re both hoping you start saying it more consistently soon.

Denver is also pretty excited about your walking. He keeps wanting you to walk towards him, and he cheers you on! Your crawling is especially great now, and the two of you have such fun chasing each other around the house and giggling. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, watching your friendship grow brings me such joy, and I pray that you will continue to become best friends.

I decided at the start of the new year that I wanted to get back into shape, so I signed up for the YMCA. We’ve been going a few times a week, sometimes so that I can run, and other times so that we can all swim together. Since the separation anxiety is still going strong, you do not love playing while I exercise. You do, however, love swimming. You splash and drink water and float calmly, and it’s really a fun way to pass time this winter!

We also finally celebrated your baby dedication at church! You looked so handsome in your yellow shirt and gray jacket, and you were ridiculously calm while up on the stage. When the pastor asked your Dad and me to promise to raise you up as a believer, you shook your head, “No,” and it was hilarious timing. I laughed so hard and was once again reminded how well your middle name suits you.

Everett Isaac, my sweet little boy, Happy 10 months! Your snuggles and laughter and independent personality are a joy, and I delight in being your mom.

Love,

Mama

9 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

Happy 9 months Evie Bear! This month was full of adventure and new experiences, and you loved every minute of it.

To begin with, you got your two top teeth! You have been a teething machine, chewing on anything and everything and grossing me out! I wasn’t sure if the teeth would make it, but they did, the second showing up on the last day of the month! I am loving your big, toothy smile!

You are now cruising and using anything in your path as a walker, including your walker, little piano, boxes, rocket, and step stool. Seriously, anything that you can move you will move. It’s pretty impressive to watch. You go where you want, and are quite graceful, moving with purpose. It’s interesting to watch you think through behaviors now, and I love your independence.

Speaking of independence, you play so well on your own at home. You love exploring all of the toys in the playroom, particularly when Denver is sleeping, and you move from one object to the next intentionally. You will happily play on your own for long periods of time, come over for a hug, and then go back to playing. It is astounding to me that you are so content to play on your own.

That being said, you have some serious separation anxiety in public. You want to be held close and especially do not like to be left in the church nursery. You cry when I drop you off, cry when I’m gone, and have a complete meltdown when I pick you up. Once you’re in my arms, though, you snuggle in tightly. I am hoping that you grow out of this faze soon, but I do love knowing that you love me so much.

Aunt Los took a vacation day from work and joined us for a day trip to the Chattanooga Aquarium. You slept the entire way to the aquarium and most of the ride home! I couldn’t believe how well you did in the car, particularly since you rarely nap that well at home. At the aquarium, you enjoyed seeing the big fish, and you especially loved the crocodiles. Since it was a rainy day, we had a picnic in the car before heading home, which was really sweet even if a bit cramped. The trip was a fun break from routine, and an exciting adventure for sure.

Speaking of adventures, your Dad scored tickets to a Titans game, and we all went! It was a blast. You were not so sure about the baby headphones, and you were especially not sure about the loud cheering, but it was a fun first half, and you made the cutest little Titans fan.

At the end of the month, we celebrated your first Christmas! You looked so snuggly in your Christmas pajamas. You were a bit too young to enjoy opening gifts, but we all had a fun day at home as a family. Your first Christmas is the first Christmas we’ve spent at home in a long time, and it was a welcome change.

I love you so much, little Ev! Happy 9 months!

Love,

Mama

8 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

Hello my happy little 8 month old! This month was full of excitement as we celebrated your first Halloween and Thanksgiving and also your new ability to crawl!

So happy in your hat

Let’s start with the holidays. For Halloween, Denver dressed up as The Man with the Yellow Hat which meant that you dressed up as Curious George! You were so completely adorable, even if you were not super excited about the hat part of the costume. The best part was your banana teether, which I did not plan at all to coordinate with your outfit. I literally gave it to you to chew on as we were walking out the door. So hilarious and perfect!

Curious George

For Thanksgiving, we journeyed to your grandparents house. You were a bit tired because teething has caused some very short naps, but you had fun hanging out with everyone right up until nap time. You were also the cutest little turkey I’ve ever seen. I made you a little hat with your handprints, and you actually wore it!

You look so sleepy.

Dad took off work the entire week of Thanksgiving, which was perfect timing because it’s when you learned to crawl! Den was napping downstairs, and Dad and I were playing with you upstairs. You’d been rocking back and forth on all fours but not committing to forward motion. All of a sudden, you took off with a clever little knee and foot crawl! It was like you’d been waiting until you absolutely knew you could do it, and then you were full steam ahead. You now use one knee and one foot and hobble all around the house. You are ridiculously adorable, and Dad and I are delighted about your new skill!

Perched and ready

Along with your mobility, you are so happy now! The crankiness dissipated the day you became mobile and was replaced with laughter and smiling. What a relief, and what good timing. You have needed this happier disposition to help with the sicknesses you’ve been battling for the better part of the month. Early on you had a virus, and when that started to clear up, you came down with Hand, Foot, and Mouth disease. You have been so sick, with a fever and sores and a cough, but you’re making it through. I am hopeful that you’ll heal up soon.

You are so sick and done with the day.

Along with mobility, you’re making strides in communication. You now say “mama.” At first, I thought you were just babbling, but now I’m convinced that you’re actually saying my name. You consistently say “mama” when I am around and you want to be picked up. So, it might mean “mama come get me,” but I’ll take it! Mama is an excellent first word, little man. You also mimic breathing in and out of your nose and clicking your tongue against the roof of your mouth. The imitation game is really fun, and everyone, including Denver, enjoys making sounds with you.

Telling me about something.

Speaking of Denver, you two are continuing to grow into best friends. He lays next to you and asks for pictures with “bro.” He showed you how to splash water in the bath tub, and you splash with him and make squealing noises. He holds your hand and asks me to say prayers, and he makes you laugh when we’re in the car and you’re ready to get out of your seat. What a joy it is to watch your friendship get stronger each day.

Best friends

Happy 8 months my sweet baby Everett! You are such a lovely baby, and I’m so thankful that you’re part of our family!

Love,

Mama

7 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

Happy seven months, to my sweet little brunette baby! Your hair still sticks straight up on top, and it’s adorable.

So precious

The fussiness continues! This is the third month in a row I’ve written about it. It’s the strangest thing. You are such a sweet, happy, cuddly buddy. You love playing with toys, and you even play independently quite well. When you are happy, you are so very happy. When you are unhappy, though, a switch flips, and you cry and wail until I pick you up. Then, when I pick you up, you try to catapult out of my arms. What in the world?! I thought that once your second tooth came in, the fussiness would abate, but it was replaced with serious separation anxiety. It’s been rough, little dude.

Happy because we’re together!

So rough, in fact, that Dad decided to night wean you all by himself. You were waking up every hour or two all night long, and you kept waking earlier, like 11pm, 10pm, and 9pm. Finally, I hit a bit of a wall, and Dad stayed home from work one morning to let me sleep. Then, he set up the air mattress and told me to sleep upstairs for a few nights. With Dad on duty, you started sleeping much longer stretches. Some nights you’d sleep eleven hours straight. Other nights, you’d cry for up to two hours somewhere in the middle. It took about two-three weeks, but your nights are now consistently 10.5-11 hours, and we are both getting long stretches of sleep again.

Riding on the red rocket

Now for some happier news. You are sturdy when you stand up! You love playing with your activity table and will stand and play well for a few minutes at a time. You are also finally rolling both ways. If given the chance, you will roll across the bedroom floors. It’s fun to watch you with this new freedom.

Standing up!

You also love eating, now, with three meals a day! You eat oatmeal for breakfast, fruit and veggies for dinner, and you can eat 4-5 tbs in 3-5 minutes. It’s impressive. You’ve even expressed an interest in apple splices, but you mostly like to teeth on them and then spit them out.

Chewing on an apple

Chewing on a block

I love you, little Ev, fussiness and all. I love reading with you, snuggling with you, and carrying you all around. Keep growing, little man, and stay sweet forever.

Reading together

Love,

Mama

P.S. Here is a family picture from church!

 

 

6 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

Happy half-birthday, little buddy! I cannot believe how fast the last six months have flown by. I still vividly remember holding you on my chest moments after you were born. I remember walking around the house and you falling asleep as I carried you in the crook of my arm. It seems like I blinked, and you’re six months old!

Handsome little six month old!

Fall is finally here, and we’ve been taking full advantage of the cooler days. You are big enough for the double stroller now, so we take walks in the afternoons. We also drove to a playground, and you enjoyed your first ride in a swing! You were the tiniest little swinger I’ve ever seen! It was precious, and we’ll get back to the playground soon.

First time in double stroller! You look so tiny.

Trying out the fall decorations.

First time in a swing

Since you enjoy riding in the stroller, I thought you would also enjoy riding in a grocery cart. I was so wrong! You wobble all around and eventually start crying. I took some cute pics while the fun lasted, but you are still in the baby carrier during most of our excursions. I think you need a few more pounds and inches before you fit snuggly in carts.

This casual pose is hilarious.

This was another fussy month, little dude, but the fussing seems to have paid off. You have your first tooth! I wasn’t sure if it would make it this month, but it literally cut through on the last day. You are working hard on your second, and I can’t wait to see your toothy grin.

Playing with your tag blanket, aka teething toy

Recently you started smacking your lips around lunch and dinnertime when the entire family was eating without you. So we stared you on solids, oatmeal and veggies. Things got off to a rough start, but once you discovered squash, you became the happiest little eater.

First time trying oatmeal

Much happier with sweet potatoes

I love you, little Evie. I love watching you each day. I love your smile. I love your contagious smile. I love watching you laugh at your brother, play with new toys, and observe the world around you. Thanks for being such a wonderful addition to our family. You are incredibly loved.

Reading a book

Trying out the piano

Snuggling with Denver

Happy six months!

Love,

Mama

5 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

Happy 5 months my little, little! You are cute as ever! If I am being honest, this was a fussy month for you. I think your teeth are getting ready to come in, and you are not happy about it. You put anything you can reach into your mouth, including your feet! Ev, you are one flexible baby.

Toes!

Teething toy

You want to be held and loved on all day long. Because I am carrying you so much, I’ve been wearing you in the wrap more. You love taking walks around the neighborhood, watching Denver run in the big field, listening to the breeze, and blinking the sun out of your eyes. It is very hot this month, so we’re both covered in sweat by the end of the walks, but it’s good exercise for me and interesting for you.

Walking and sweating

You’ve recently learned how to fall asleep for naps on your own. It wasn’t even a difficult transition. One day you were super squirmy in my arms, so I laid you in your crib, and you fell right asleep! I LOVE that you don’t need to be rocked to sleep anymore, because Denver is now able to participate in the pre nap routine. We all read books together, and it brings a bit of peace to our often chaotic days. Your favorite book isĀ Where’s My Nose. You sit intently looking at the pictures and grabbing the pages. I think we read it 3 times a day right now.

Happy in crib!

Reading with Denver

The biggest news this month is that you’re sitting up on your own, as of 2-3 days before you turned 5 months. You were completely uninterested in sitting up one day, and the next day you could sit up for minutes on end! Way to go little man! This is such a fun new milestone!

Sitting!

Now that you’re sitting up, I was able to compare similar baby pictures of you and Dad. You two really do look alike!

Dad on left, Everett on right

Happy 5 months my sweet boy, Everett. I hope this month will be full of laughs and giggles and maybe even some teeth!

Love,

Mama

P.S. Here are a few pics of the two of us. Love our snugs, baby boy.

 

4 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

Happy fourth months little man! We recently visited the doctor for your four month checkup, and you are such a skinny mini, in the 50th percentile for height and the 25th percentile for weight. You’ve already doubled your birth weight though, at 14 lbs 4 oz, which means you’re right on track with your growth curve! Also, you’re fantastic about getting checked out by the doctor but so pitiful after vaccines. You cry and scream and refuse to nurse, and it’s pitiful and very dramatic. Good grief! Here’s to hoping six month vaccines are a bit easier. I’ve already asked your dad to take off work to help me.

Giving me the love eye

Now we must discuss your social skills. Ev, you are a flirt! You smile BIG when you see new people, and especially when other people smile at you. During month three, you were a mama’s boy and didn’t really love interacting with other people. Something changed in month four, though, and you couldn’t be happier being passed around and smiled at. Seriously, it warms my heart hearing you coo at people to get their attention, and I love watching you laugh at whoever is holding you. Keep socializing, little buddy, but know that I’ve got an eye on you and your flirting!

It looks like you’re waving

Possibly the reason you are so comfortable around people now is that we took you on your first trip this month! You flew on four planes, from Nashville to Virginia Beach and back. You are a flexible travel companion, and I appreciate it. You met great grandparents, aunts, uncles, great aunts, great uncles, and cousins. You also experienced many firsts: the beach, a fourth of July pool party, and a hibachi dinner! It was so fun watching you take in all of the new experiences, and I have to reiterate how flexible you were the entire time. You are such a go with the flow baby!

First plane ride!

You are very excited about something!

Getting ready for the beach

Getting carried to the beach

At the beach

Relaxing with Great Grandpa

Flirting with Great Grammie

Snugging with Great Aunt Liz, cousin Rachel, and Great Grand Sarah

Laughing with Pappy

The last major change this month is the transition from bassinet to crib. Around the half month mark, right after we returned from Virginia Beach, your nighttime sleep started to derail as you fought the swaddle. So, Dad and I tried to move you to your crib still swaddled, and you wanted no part of it. So, we dropped the swaddle, let you cry it out, and you adjusted so easily to your crib at night! The crying was minimal, by the way, and I was shocked by the ease. I cannot say the same for naps. You went from taking 40 plus minute naps to 20 minute naps, and it took a full two weeks to adjust. We even skipped church to power through nap training with two parents at home since I was so stressed about it! You did adjust, though, and you seem much happier in your crib. You move a lot at night, occasionally wake up and talk yourself back to sleep, but you’re only waking once or twice to nurse, and you’re sleeping much longer in the mornings, which I love (6:40 as opposed to 5:20).

Blurry pic, but you’re peacefully sleeping in your crib

This is when you were having nap troubles. I gave in and let you nap on me.

Everett, you are so incredibly loved. I can’t wait to see what the next month brings. You’re close to rolling from back to belly, and I’m watching carefully for the day you figure it out! Thanks for being such a sweet, social, snuggle bug.

Love,

Mama

 

3 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

Happy three months little man. Let’s start with a mom confession: I totally call you Evie. When you’re older, this probably won’t be cool, and I’ll start calling you Everett again. Right now, though, you’re so little and Evie seems to suit you. So, Evie it is.

Tummy time champ

You still love your moose

You are laughing a lot this month, and I am loving it! So is your brother, Denver, who is the cause for much of your laughter. You think it’s funny when he bounces on the trampoline, and you watch everything he does all day long. I hardly have to entertain you half the time because you are mesmerized by watching him. Sometimes he makes loud excited sounds, and you mimic them, and it’s amazing to watch you two interact in this way. I’m so thankful that you’re becoming best buds.

Laughing

Brotherly love

While you laugh a lot, you did have a complete breakdown at church one Sunday morning. I think you were overtired, but honestly, it was a bit uncharacteristic for you. You were so panicked that I couldn’t calm you down and had to ask Dad to assist. He came back to the nursery area, rocked you in a chair, and you immediately calmed down and fell asleep. It was sweet and lovely and I’m so glad that you love your Dad so much.

Everett, you’ve discovered your tongue and you think it’s fun to stick it out all the time. You also love it when I stick my tongue out at you. We sit on the couch sticking our tongues out at each other, and it’s a fun way to spend the afternoons. Speaking of body parts, you’re finally filling out your belly. You’ve been such a skinny baby up to this point. Keep drinking that milk, little man. Your feet are also fun. You have these little zebra and tiger socks that you wear in your bouncy chair, and you kick and stare and try to grab ahold of these socks each day. So cute!

That tongue!

Those socks!

This month you experienced a first: swimming in the pool! The cool water initially alarmed you, but you adapted very quickly and actually enjoyed floating around with me. I’m planning to take you to the pool pretty often, so get pumped!

This is a pic from the pool. I couldn’t take one in the water because I didn’t want to get the phone wet!

Finally, we took some family photos this month to make sure we captured you as a baby! Everett, it was tricky to take the pics. You acted like a sweet little champion baby, but Denver continually tried to derail the process. It’s a wonder that we were able to get any good pics! But, we did, and you’re adorable, and I’m so thankful to have memories from this season.

Love love LOVE you little Evie! Happy three months!

Love,

Mama

 

2 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

Happy two months, little man! I am loving this age. You are so adorable, with your big smiles that start at the eyes, and your gentle laughter, which I can literally feel in your chest and back while holding you. You have a very sweet personality, and it melts my heart when you stare into my eyes for long periods of time.

Sweetest smile

You are outgrowing your evening fussiness, and I am soooo thankful! You definitely made full use of the witching hours, but you’ve recently calmed and evenings are more enjoyable. You especially settle down at bath time now that you bathe with Denver. It’s pretty adorable watching you two in the tub together. I love seeing your friendship grow.

It still takes some time to get you to sleep each night, but you are a tremendous sleeper, waking only 1-2 times a night to nurse, and going back to sleep fairly easily. You switched from a velcro swaddler to a blanket swaddle midway through the month, and you definitely prefer being able to move around more. The night sleep has been such a relief for your Dad and me, so please keep it up, little buddy!

Peaceful

You’ve already hit your first major milestone, and that’s because you are ROLLING! At five weeks you surprised me when you rolled from your tummy to back. Then you did it several more times in a row, and again the next day! What a champ. I keep a close eye on you now because I am always afraid you’re gonna roll off furniture.

This has nothing to do with rolling, but it’s cute.

Ev, I absolutely love your expressions. You have many. They are the most obvious when you are staring at your toy moose, Mortimer. I am glad to see that you have a goofy side. You are also very happy while playing on your play mat. You’re already swatting at toys, and it’s interesting to see that you have an independent side. You will play on your mat for 30 minutes at a time, and it’s very peaceful to watch.

Seriously, what is this expression? You and Den look like you’re up to something!

I told Dad you look like a boss and Denver looks like your muscle. So hilarious!

Your hair is getting longer now, and there is one spot that is extra long in the back. Dad calls it your Alfalfa patch, and it makes me laugh because it often sticks up a bit.

Alfalfa patch

As calm as you are, you detest the car seat. You seem to run warm, and you get hot in the car, which makes you cry louder, which makes you sweat more. Good grief. The car seat is your friend, Everett! I am hoping you’ll learn this soon.

You look somewhat less than amused

Everett, you really are an incredibly sweet little boy, and it’s lovely how easily you’re comforted when Dad and I pick you up. We love you so much and are so thankful that you’re a part of our family. Happy two months! You actually get two pics because I can’t decide which is the best.

This pic shows your scrappy side.

This pic shows your calm side. LOVE your calm side.

Love,

Mama

1 Month Letter to Everett

Dear Everett,

You are here! I’m so delighted, little man, because you took your time arriving. I could not believe it when I reached 40 weeks and you decided to stay put, so when you officially arrived at 40 weeks and 6 days, it was such a relief! I was worried about your size, and for no good reason. You weighed only 7 lbs, 1 oz. at birth. Clearly you needed that extra week to put on some weight. You were long, though, born at 20.5 inches. Your weight is picking up now, and I’ll be curious to see the weight to height ratio at your next appointment.

Let me just say, you’re adorable. You have long fingers and toes, a prominent nose that looks just like your daddy, and my cleft chin! I still remember the moment the doctor placed you on my chest immediately after birth, and I pray I’ll remember that feeling for the rest of my life. It was a holy moment.

Not the first moment, but very soon after

This first month had it’s ups and downs. Week 1 you were a perfect angel baby, napping all day, sleeping all night, and barely crying. It was calm and comforting to us all. Week 2 was rough. You woke up a bit, became much more vocal, and decided you didn’t want to nap during the day. I really think it had a lot to do with tummy troubles that have since settled down. Life has calmed considerably these last two weeks. We’re still working on naps, but I’m getting better at reading your sleep cues, and you seem to be more comfortable with the nap routine. You’re happy for an hour of awake time, and then I calm you (or try to) and swaddle you up. The evenings are rough from 6-9ish, but there have been a few calmer nights recently, and I am hoping that you’re settling into a nightly routine. At the very least, you are amazing at nursing quickly and going back to sleep at night on your own. That is a wonderful gift to Dad and me, and we are so thankful.

Nap time success thanks to a perfect swaddle

Getting ready for bed with Dad and Denver

Let’s talk about your brother. He loves you, and he’s perplexed by you. When you wake from naps, he comes running to help pick you up. When you were crying one day, he grabbed a nearby pacifier, bolted from a room so fast that he ran into a door, and continued into your bedroom where he gave you the paci. He reads to you, holds you, and asks for you whenever we are at mealtime and you’re not in your seat. So that’s the positive. He has tried to launch off of you a few times, there have been some close calls with his feet kicking near you, and he tried to pick you up all by himself once and you both fell to the floor. I am thankful that babies are durable.

Meeting your brother for the first time

Denver loves to read to you

Speaking of durable, you visited the ER this month. I was babywearing you in the backyard on a very muddy day. Denver was covered in mud, and I bent down to take off his shoes. In the process, you fell out of the baby carrier, head first, and landed on the deck. I am SOOOOOOO sorry, Everett! You are fine, but let me say, it was the absolute worst day of my life. Love you, little man. (If it helps, please know that you projectile pooped in my hair one day.)

Poor little head

I am still getting to know your personality, but I get the impression that you’re generally calm and snuggly. You absolutely love being carried, hate taking baths, and make the cutest facial expressions. Dad and I are both smitten.

My sweet snug bug

First bath at home

So many expressions

Happy 1 month Everett! Welcome to Team Sledge!

Love,

Mama

P.S. Here is one of our first pics as a family of four!

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