He has changed so, SO much, and we have had to adjust with each stage. The other day, I was reading a book my mom got me for Christmas, Your Toddler Month by Month. It said the following:
"If you had an easy time in the first year, you may find the toddler years a bit of a shock as your baby transforms into an independent soul" (page 17).
Um, yes. This is us :)
It was another good reminder to me that as Ben grows and changes, we need to as well! I feel like I am adjusting and learning to explain everything to him even more so than when he was a "baby",. Knowing that his adorable little tantrums are simply because he can't quite express himself and what he wants helps get through them.
The good news, is that I know we still have it really easy. He is the sweetest and happiest kid! He LOVES to learn, loves to figure out how things work, loves to be silly and gives us about a zillion hugs each day. To know that 2013 will be the year that he and I will fully communicate with one another with WORDS kind of blows my mind.
This time last year I was absolutely DREADING going back to work. This year, I'm thoroughly enjoying my holiday break and am actually looking forward to getting back to the office and back to our regular schedule. I think all three of us have settled in quite nicely to our routine. Greg has been at his job for over a year now and is no longer the "new" guy there. There have been a lot of changes at my company over the last year, but it feels like the majority of them have been good changes. Ben loves his two days a week with Callie and the girls and his one day a week with my mom. I am so happy with how this situation has worked out for all of us! We are all happy with where we spend our days :)
Greg's mom came out to visit us for a month, TWICE, which was so wonderful for all of us! We don't get to see her every week like we do my mom, but I'm so happy that when we do we really get to catch up and spend a lot of quality time. She is such an enormous help and we were so lucky that she was able to visit us!
When I think about our lives now, I often times feel like we aren't doing as much as we used to. It sometimes feels like "parenting" (or at least our style of parenting) has taken over. Sure, we didn't take any "big" (read: beach) vacations this year, we rarely got out to the movies or to dinner alone (compared to what we used to do), and our lives definitely revolve around the little man's sleep schedule.
HOWEVER, we went to San Diego for a great family trip, went on another weekend trip with the Cougans, Greg went on a "man" trip with his friends, we attended FOUR weddings, we made it to many of our friend's parties, celebrated many new babies being born, I started teaching yoga again, AND we purchased our new home!! Sure, things may not happen as spontaneously as they used to, but I think we are doing a pretty good job at balancing it all when I really think about it!
I'm excited to see what 2013 will bring! We have already booked a trip to Palm Springs in April, and have been talking about planning a trip to Chicago/Wisconsin in August or September (before we have to pay for a ticket for Ben)!
I hope everyone has a fun and safe New Year's Eve and Happy New Year!