Baby Drew: Ten Months

Drew is a happy, smiley baby. Right around the 10-month mark he went through a bit of a cranky phase as some of his teeth we’re coming in and he was learning to crawl. We had some rough nights of sleep during that time, but he is back to being his cheerful self. Below are facts about 10-month-old baby Drew.

– Before learning to crawl, he did an inch worm scoot for a couple of weeks that was very cute.

– He loves to chew on things. Neither of my older kids did a lot of chewing while they were teething. I had unopened chew toys that had been gifted to my older two kids that Drew has appreciated.

– He sits up on his own in the bathtub and loves to splash.

– He loves to eat. When he sees his food, he begins shaking and opens his mouth wide.

– He loves to jabber, which is very cute and challenging when we’re in quiet places like church haha.

Halloween and Thanksgiving 2021

Our neighborhood isn’t ideal for trick-or-treating. There are only seven houses, including ours, and they’re a bit spread out. So we opted to go to Luray and trick-or-treat on Main Street. Luray’s trick-or-treating was on Saturday, October 30, which was perfect for our family. David was a robot; Brooke a unicorn princess; Drew a skeleton. It was drizzling rain the entire time we trick-or-treated, but the kids didn’t seem to mind. Brooke fell asleep minutes after we got back to the car after trick-or-treating, which was surprising for Brooke. Clearly it tired her out haha.

We were home for Thanksgiving this year. On the years when we’re home, we like to go out to dinner on the eve of Thanksgiving. My brother Trevor, sister Melissa, and friend Keri joined us for dinner. Afterwards, we like to walk around and look at the Christmas decorations. Melissa and Keri also joined us for Thanksgiving. They made some delicious food for the meal. John did a great job with the Turkey and pecan pie. I was in charge of rolls, stuffing, gravy, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, and chocolate banana cream pie. The kids and I also created the centerpieces. Sadly, I didn’t get a picture of those.

Four-Year-Old David

In October, David turned four. He is a fun four-year-old with a tender heart who likes trains, trucks, tractors cars, and buses. He loves his wooden train tracks he received for his third birthday and has accumulated more tracks and accessories over the past year. Each day during quiet time, he can be found building his train tracks in his room.

He is a musical child and loves singing the songs he learns in primary (Sunday school for 4- to 11-year-olds) at church. It helps that I’m the primary music leader haha. He has a great memory. Right now, Brooke and David are watching Moana. He’s only seen the movie once, this past summer. The other day in the car, a song from the movie came on and he said, “that’s from Moana.” I was so surprised he remembered the song and the movie. So yesterday when we went to the library, we checked out Moana on DVD. Speaking of the library, David also loves books. We read at least one story every day before quiet time and again before bedtime. David is a child who can sit and look at books for long periods of time, even though he can’t read yet.

David is a people person. Whenever we go to the park, he asks if his “friends” will be there. By “friends” he means any other children, even those he’s never met. Next year, we may enroll him in preschool and he can spend more time with “friends.” With COVID still being a concern this fall, we opted not to enroll him in preschool. He won’t start kindergarten until 2023. His birthday is just a couple weeks after the kindergarten age cutoff, so he will be one of the oldest in his class.

David is a terrific oldest child. He loves to help his younger siblings and he is patient with us as parents as we try out new and different parenting tactics. We’re so grateful this four-year-old is in our family!

A Lesson About Trust From Brooke

Nap time/quiet time is almost over and soon the evening “circus” of clean-up, bath time, dinner time, and bed time will begin. I wanted to take a quick moment to jot down a lesson I’m learning from Brooke. When Brooke gets hurt and comes to me for comfort (which can happen a lot because she doesn’t always look where she’s going), I often find myself telling her that whatever hurts (her toe, finger, knee, etc.) will be okay. Once I say it will be okay, she accepts that as fact and is no longer upset. She just says “okay” and moves on. She doesn’t question if what I’m saying is true or not. I think that God, our Father, often offers us comfort through scriptures or personal impressions, yet we often question His reassurance and question if things really will be okay. Observing Brooke’s trust helps me understand the power of having the faith of a child and the value of becoming like a child in our relationship with God. I love my sweet and sassy Brooke and the lessons she teaches me!

Baby Drew: Nine Months

Mr. Drew is quickly approaching one-year-old status. He is a delightful and easy-going baby. He’s actually ten months old but I’m a little behind posting his monthly updates. Below are facts about Drew at nine months.

– He sleeps through the night again (yay).

– He loves to eat and is not picky about what he is fed.

– He can stay sitting up if placed in a seated position (he can almost push himself up to a seated position on his own).

– He loves to kick and splash in the bath tub.

– He has a second tooth coming in on the bottom, and we can see three coming in up top.

– He loves to randomly start screeching.

– He is all smiles practically all of the time.

– When he’s really hungry and sees his bottle, he opens his mouth and his body shakes. It’s pretty cute.

Baby Drew: Eight Months

Drew is a light in our family’s life. Below are facts about 8-month-old Drew.

– He doesn’t crawl yet, but he loves to plank and get up on his hands and knees and rock forward and back.

– He loves to chew on things.

– He can hold his own bottle when he eats.

– He either likes to wake up early and take a long morning nap (I wake him up after two hours so he will still be able nap in the afternoon) or sleeps in until after 9:30.

– He loves to roll all around.

– He’s very ticklish and loves to laugh.

– He lights up when he sees his siblings, and they adore him.

– He has started waking up once a night but not consistently. I feed him 2-3 ounces and then he goes back to sleep. (Brooke started waking once a night around 8 months. I also would feed her a few ounces and she’d go back to sleep. This continued on for many more months – maybe even a year – so I’m hoping that’s not the case again).

Morgan Family Reunion 2021

This past July my parents celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary. We gathered as a family in Myrtle Beach to celebrate. We went to the beach, ate good food, played games, shopped, took family pictures, went bowling, and had fun hanging out. John, the kids, and I went out to the beach every day while we were there (except for one day when no one went out). Brooke and David loved the beach. David especially loved the tide pools, and Brooke loved having an adult take her out into the ocean and hold her while jumping waves. Having other adults around meant that John and I were able to go out in the ocean together. We brought inner tubes and floated and talked. Times with John in the ocean were some of my favorite moments of the trip to Myrtle. Below are pictures of our time at the beach, including some of the family pictures the photographer shot.

This picture was actually taken at the lake by our house a couple days before we headed down to South Carolina.
This is a re-make of a picture we took 15 years ago.

Baby Drew: Month 6 & 7 Updates

Our Mr. Drew is over 7 months. I never wrote his 6-month update, so I’m combining it with his 7-month update.

Baby Drew at 6 months:

  • Great sleeper and napper.
  • Can roll over in both directions.
  • Started eating pureed foods. His first food was pumpkin. He seems to like everything we’ve given him (except green beans – those didn’t settle well).
  • Loves to screech – it’s a new thing.
  • Loves to smile and laugh.

Baby Drew at 7 months:

  • Got his first tooth!
  • Teething has been rough on him. Neither of my older kids really expressed pain or discomfort when teething, so this is new for me.
  • Loves to bounce in his bouncer.
  • Prefers to sleep on his stomach. Although he can sleep in almost any position.
  • Sleep has become more rough this past month, but overall he’s still a great sleeper.
  • Screeching seems to be his favorite way of communicating.
  • He can grab things and put them in his mouth.
  • He rolls and scoots (only backwards) all over the place. He’s at the point where he can get stuck under couches or chairs because he only knows how to scoot backwards.
  • Loves the water and enjoys sitting in a baby float when we go to the lake and kicking his legs.
An example of him stuck under the chair from scooting backwards haha.

Family Snapshot

Life is always moving forward. It’s Sunday afternoon and everyone is either napping or having “quiet time.” I thought about taking a nap myself, but I want to take a moment and record a snapshot of our family’s life at this time. I know there are a lot of little memories that will slip away over time as life moves on.

Drew (7 months)

Drew is so lovable. We recently learned he loves the water. We bought him a baby float he can sit in when we go to the lake near our house, and he loves it so much. He likes to kick his legs in the water. For the most part, Drew is a very go-with-the-flow baby. The two times a day he can get a bit cranky are before lunch (if I’ve made him wait too long to eat) and when he’s ready to go to bed. He loves to smile, laugh, and screech. He also has started spitting, and he thinks it’s very funny.

Brooke (2 and a 1/2)

Brooke is so fun. She loves to be independent. She likes to pick out and put on her own clothes. After she does something on her own, like get dressed, she’ll raise both hands in the air and in the cutest voice exclaim, “I did it!” If I’m trying to do something for her that she wants to do on her own, she says, “No. Brooke’s turn.” She always has to have a bow in her hair, even when it’s time to put on pajamas. She is always so excited to see Drew. If Drew isn’t in the same room as her and she can’t see him, she’ll come up to me and say “Shhh. Drew sleeping.” She loves to sing “I Am A Child of God” and “Do As I’m Doing,” which she simply calls “Do As.” Her favorite show is Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. She likes to wander when she eats (if she’s eating at her kids table and can easily get off her chair.) This is a habit we’re trying to change ha. She is potty trained (yay!). That experience was so much easier than it was with David, and I think part of that is because I learned from potty training David techniques that were helpful and techniques that were not. I also just accepted the fact that accidents are just apart of the process and that’s okay. That mindset made potty training not feel so heavy. Right now, Brooke doesn’t like going to nursery at church on Sunday. She likes people and likes playing with toys, so we’re not sure why nursery is so hard for her. She loves going to the playground and is quite adventurous and willing to climb and try almost any slide. When we go to the lake, she likes to wear her puddle jumpers (floats), walk out to where she can’t touch, lift up her legs and float. Then she loves to have someone pull her back to where she can touch the bottom. Brooke loves McDonald’s chicken “muggets” (as she calls them). She can spot a McDonald’s from a mile away it seems like. Randomly in the car, she’ll yell “Donald’s!” in the happiest voice, and sure enough, I’ll look around and see the gold arches somewhere on the horizon.

David (Almost 4)

David is a great oldest child and big brother. He’s patient with me as I work through different parenting strategies. He is currently in a phase where he loves to use his imagination. His “quiet time” toys were taken away one day this week because he wouldn’t clean them up. I thought he’d really miss the toys the next day during “quiet time” but instead he happily told me that he used his imagination to play. His favorite show is probably Curious George. His favorite thing to watch though is the Muppets movie, the one with the song “Life’s a Happy Song.” That is his FAVORITE song. He also loves the song “Peace in Christ.” We alternate between those two soundtracks when we’re in the car. A few months ago, he went through a phase of watching the Peanuts movie every time he was allowed to use my iPad after quiet time. One day, he came up close to my face and said, “Are you trying to hold my hand? You sly dog.” This is a line from the Peanuts movie that I think Peppermint Patty says to Charlie Brown. The funniest thing is instead of saying the word “dog,” David said “dar.” After months of trying to convince him Peppermint Patty was saying “dog” not “dar,” he finally has relented. David loves people and calls everyone his “friends.” He has an amazing memory. He loves building with quatros (legos that are 4x the size) and mega blocks. He loves wooden trains and wants to look at them each time we go to Target. He likes taking pictures on my phone and then looking at all the picture he took. I love hearing him pray. The way he slowly says “Heavenly Father” and emphasizes each syllable is so cute. He is also pretty independent and can do so much on his own. His favorite restaurant is Spelunkers – he LOVES their grilled cheese and ice cream. For the longest time, he simply called Spelunkers “restaurant” (as if no other restaurants existed haha).

Meghan

I’m enjoying this stage of life with three little kids at home. Our schedule is our own because we don’t have commitments outside of the house, like school, since my kids are so young. It’s nice to have this time with my kids without feeling like we’re rushing from one thing to the next. I like being able to do fun things like go to the lake or park with my kids any day we want. I also like that every afternoon they have nap time/quiet time, which enables me to have time to focus on other household items or projects. While I LOVE this stage of life, it can be exhausting. I don’t have a lot of down time. I’m trying to be more proactive at carving out time to sit, relax, and reflect. About six weeks after Drew was born, I started a gratitude journal. Each day, I set a timer for two minutes and write down whatever comes to mind that I’m grateful for. I feel like this really helps me to have a strong mental mindset. I’ve also found some YouTube workout videos that I enjoy doing. Each day, I either do a workout video or I go on a morning walk before it’s too hot and before my kids wake up. My calling (service role) at church is so fun. I’m the primary music leader, so I get to sing songs with the kids (under 12) during Sunday school. It’s awesome.

John

John is a great husband and father. He stays very busy with work. He does a good job of making sure to carve out time for me and the kids in the evenings. He recently got a kayak. He loves being outside, and since we live near the “canoeing capital of Virginia,” we thought kayaking might be the perfect hobby to help him decompress when he needs to. He’s also starting to camp more. Sometimes he takes David and other times he goes with guys from our church congregation. We live by so many great camping spots, that it’s an easy hobby to pick up and enjoy out here. He still enjoys cycling, but we don’t live close to any good cycling paths anymore. So a few months ago he bought a mountain bike, since we do live really close to some mountain biking trails. However, right after he got it, he injured his knee pretty badly so he hasn’t been able to use it a lot.

Well, that’s a quick glimpse at our lives right now. We’re happy, healthy, and grateful.

Christmas/December 2020 (Catch Up)

I know it’s JULY but I never posted about Christmas, and it was a great one, so I want to make sure I capture the memories.

December brought snow, which was awesome. It really made the Christmas season magical.

My parents and brother Blake came from Utah. We were concerned about COVID and thankfully my parents were able to get tested as often as they wanted through their jobs to ensure they were negative. My mom planned to stay for a month so she could be here to take care of Brooke and David when Drew was born. My sister Melissa lives in the area and she stayed over at our house for a couple days during the Christmas holiday as well.

Christmas Eve is one of my most favorite days of the year. John’s family has a tradition of dressing up on Christmas Eve and so we asked my family if they’d be up for that. My favorite tradition is reading scriptures about the birth of Christ and singing carols together. It’s fun to read a few verses and then sing. Then read some more, and then sing some more. Music can be so powerful. I love the feeling of singing about the birth of our Savior with my family.

David is really into birthdays and specifically birthday cake. So we had a birthday cake for Jesus on Christmas Day.

Christmas magic was definitely alive in our house with a 3-year-old and almost 2-year-old. They made it so fun.

We had fun playing games while we were all together. It felt so good to have our house full of people I love and to laugh together. We learned my sister is a master a trivia!

While we were all together we took advantage of the Shenandoah mountains. We all hiked together one afternoon. The next day John and I went on a hiking date and did the same hike as the day prior. On a different day, my parents, John, the kids and I also traveled to a section of the mountains further from our house and did another hike. The kids were troopers. We pushed/pulled them in our Burley stroller.

We also took a trip into the city and walked from the World War II Memorial to the Capitol. It was fun to take in the sights downtown and the weather was great. The only hard part of all the walking is I constantly felt like I needed to use the restroom since I was just about 9 months pregnant at the time haha.

I didn’t take a ton of pictures while we all together for two reasons: (1) I just wanted to focus on being present (2) My face was really swollen this pregnancy and to be honest I felt very self-conscious.

It was a wonderful Christmas! Of course we had other “fun” moments – Brooke throwing up, someone falling down the stairs – but that’s life.

I was about to make a joke and say that hopefully I’ll write about next Christmas before July, and then it occurred to me that I never wrote about our 2019 Christmas in Iowa. So, even though it’s July, I’m proud I got something written up haha.