Tuesday, September 4, 2012

It's My Birthday...Soon


Dear Readers,

I have been told that my first birthday is on Sunday.  I thought this was a good time to reflect on the first year of my life.  More importantly, I've been told by Momma that I need to seriously thank a lot of people.  She says that without you, we would never have made it through my first year.  I find this to be a little dramatic...I guess I know where I get it from.

Thank you to everyone who has babysat me, bought me presents, smiled at me, gushed over me, come to our rescue, been incredibly flexible with Momma, laughed with us, cried with us, encouraged me to keep working hard toward my goals and commented on my million photos and videos on Facebook...there have been a lot....sorry about that...I have no control over her.  She can't seem to help herself.

My first year has been a wild one.  It's been very happy and very sad.  But despite it all, you have stuck with us and kept Momma, Daddy and me going.  Not only have you kept us going but you have also kept us laughing.

Momma created a video to share with you all.  I think it's a little long but what can you do about a super proud Momma? She says she hopes you enjoy it.  You'll have to copy and paste.  The video wouldn't load and I got tired of waiting...give me a break, I'm only one year old :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hlyaz-bYm2E&feature=plcp



Friday, June 1, 2012

Letter from the Battlefront

I am a fighter.  A hero you might say.  Every day I do battle with the most sneaky, hideous, evil monster known to man.  Sometimes, we fight several times a day.  If it weren't for me keeping him at bay, you would all be in peril.  He is, THE SLEEP MONSTER!! When he sneaks up on me, I am generally able to keep him back but he seems to gain strength as the day progresses.   No battles are as terrible as the ones at night.

My tactics include, but are not limited to (wouldn't want to give away all my secrets) screaming, biting (this will be more effective when I have teeth) hair pulling, hitting and sometimes giggling...just to throw him off.

He may be winning some of the battles but I feel like I'm winning the war...yawn....gotta' go.....stretch.....I can feel another attack coming....pull Momma's hair....yes, definitely!  Everyone back!  Let me handle...this....hit the Momma.......zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.....snort......I'll get you next time Sleep Monster!  You haven't seen the last of Cooper Charles Stillman the Third....minus 2.  zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.


Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day

Today is Memorial Day.  What is Memorial Day, you ask?  It is a day to remember my Grandpa.  Oh, wait.  Sorry.  Mom says it's not just about him (could have told me that sooner) but it's really about honoring those who have died in war.  My Grandpa Rhines didn't die in a war but he served in the infantry in Vietnam.  I never got to meet him because he died when my Momma was just 22 and I didn't come along until she was really old.  She told me a lot about him today.  So in honor of Memorial Day, I will share what she told me.

My Grandpa was funny.
My Grandpa was smart.
My Grandpa could cook.
My Grandpa wished he could play the guitar.
My Grandpa was the life of the party.
My Grandpa was proud.
My Grandpa was a proud liberal.
My Grandpa liked Peter, Paul & Mary.
My Grandpa loved my Momma.

I had to ask why, if Memorial Day is about honoring those who died in a war, were we remembering Grandpa who died twenty three years after he came back?  I didn't understand.  Momma told me that in many ways, Grandpa Rhines didn't really come back from Vietnam.  He saw a lot of terrible things that haunted him for the rest of his life.  Can you imagine?  Seeing things that are so bad that you never forget them?  And that because of that, he had a hard time adjusting to everyday life.  She said he felt guilty all of the time and that Memorial Day was a really big deal to him.  She said he had undiagnosed Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome.  (I had to have Momma write that down...those are really big words for a nine month old!)  Apparently, back when soldiers were coming home from Vietnam, they didn't have a name for it and they didn't do anything to help the soldiers who had it.  So, Grandpa did what he could to help himself and his prescription was PBR.  I don't know what that is but I hear that if you take enough of it for too long, it turns out to be really bad for you and that's why I never got to meet him.

There is so much that I don't understand about all that but the biggest is why do we go to war?  Why don't we take care of people who come back?  Momma says that there wasn't even a parade for the veterans of the Vietnam War when it ended.   That doesn't seem right.   But I know that my Momma is very proud of him.  She told me that a lot of times today.  And you can tell by the way she talks about him all the time.  I can't tell if it's because she talks about him all the time or if maybe I knew him before I was born because I feel like I know him.   That's pretty cool!

So I think I have it figured out.  We honor my Grandpa Rhines on Memorial Day because the war caused my Grandpa to be sick and even though he didn't die in that country, during that war, it was that war that got him 23 years later.  OK.  I overheard Momma say that :)  But it sounds about right to me.

Dear Grandpa Rhines:  I'm sorry that you had to go to Vietnam.  Thank you for fighting.  I'm sorry that you weren't honored well when you came home and that your sickness was ignored.  You deserved better.  I will honor you every chance I get...along with my other military Grandpa's and my military Grandma.  Happy Memorial Day.



Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I Kissed a Girl

Yesterday was my mom's birthday.  She took the day off, not to celebrate but to unpack boxes.  What?!?  I thought birthday's were special days where everyone brings you presents and sings you a song and you get to do whatever you want and everyone has to be extra nice to you.  I think there's cake in there somewhere too...because it's your special day.  At least that's what I'm planning on for my birthday.

The day started out great.  A nice slow morning.  I took a little nap so that I would be all rested for the day's festivities.  Then my new therapist came to work with me.  She's the best!  Right away I was happy to see her and felt so comfortable with her.  I'm pretty sure that I smiled and chuckled through the whole thing.  I could tell that Momma was happy too.  She wasn't a big fan of the last therapists I had.  She said they were too negative and made her feel bad about everything.  I thought they were alright but I was never very excited to play with them when they came over.  I think Ms. Kristin and I are going to be friends.  I'll keep you posted.

Then Aunt Betsy and Lilly (she's kind of my girlfriend.  She's older...in Kindergarten!) came over to our new apartment.  There was a lot of high pitch girly talk about how great the new apartment is and the couch looks so good blah, blah, blah....but the couch really does look nice.  Aunt Betsy is one of my favorite people.  Momma says that she's family even though we aren't related by blood.  Momma told me, "We're related by childhood friendship and all the good and bad that life has thrown at us.  Aunt Betsy is my best friend and sister."  I'm not sure I get it but I know that she's Lilly's Momma and I really like Lilly.  I even kissed her at the Olive Garden...but that's later in the story.  I'm getting ahead of myself.

So we went to the Olive Garden for lunch to celebrate Momma's birthday.  I was playing it cool, even flirting with the waitress a little to make Lilly jealous.  I think it worked because before too long, there I was sitting on Lilly's lap.  She's so nice to me and talks to me like I'm just a person.  She doesn't see me as different from any other kid or that I'm a baby.   She's the best.   All of a sudden I had this overwhelming desire to smooch her!  So I did!  I grabbed her face with both hands and laid one on her.  She'll never be the same.

Momma says I'm sounding too much like Daddy and I need to tone it down.

When we came back to our new apartment after lunch, Momma thought it was time to start unpacking.  We've already gone over this part...you shouldn't do tedious work on your birthday.  So I decided that the only way I was going to get her to just sit and relax was to throw up all afternoon.  It worked!  We sat and cuddled on the couch for the rest of the afternoon.  Every time she put me down, I would cry.  She would pick me up.  I would throw up a little more.  We rocked.  She'd put me down...you get the idea.  Eventually, she just gave up and we downloaded the first season on Falling Skies.  Aliens.  Yeah, I think I was born to a sci-fi nerd.  It's ok though.  We had a great day!

If you're wondering, this is the look I gave to Lilly just before I kissed her:
Do you think you could resist me?

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Editor's Note: I Guess I'll Just Have To Get a Ladder

Normally Cooper writes in his voice about the events of his life but there is a larger topic that I want to explore that might be too much for an eight month old to understand.  Today, on Facebook, there has been a conversation among parents of children with Down syndrome about our birth stories and what we would have liked to have happened differently.  I haven't shared mine with the blogosphere yet and thought that since it's been on my mind a lot lately and since I've been sharing with a smaller group, now might be a good time to take a stab at it.

Everything about Cooper wasn't planned.  From conception to birth, he was a surprise.  I was thirty seven when I got pregnant and was very shocked.  Being a mom was not on my radar.  I know now that it was the best thing I ever did without thinking but then...I was kind of a wreck about it.  It took me most of my pregnancy to come to terms with it.  I will share with you the daydream that I had that finally got me over the shock and into being excited.  It was simply this tall young man reaching for something off the top shelf for me and handing it to me with a smile.  It was the smile of a soon to be grown up young man that is beginning to realize his place in the world.  He was confident and attractive and he was ready to help his old Momma out.  That's it.  Something about that made it ok for me.  

I had just started to get excited about being a mom when I went into labor a few weeks early.  It was the opening night of the 2011/12 NFL football season. I watched the Packers play some team I can't remember and fell asleep on the couch after eating too much Hudsonville Double Chocolate Almond ice cream.  

At about 1 am, my water broke.  Off to the hospital!

After way too long, my Dr. finally figured out that Cooper was breech and that they would have to do a C-section.  Since his heartbeat was really strong and regular they made me wait until after 5 pm before taking me in.  There are pictures from those few minutes leading up to the surgery that I still can't look at.  It's as if they are from another life.  It's life before Down syndrome and before my Mom passed away.  It truly is another life.  I can only explain it as what it might be like if you were able to peek at your life in another dimension.  I recognize the people and I remember the events but there is a foreign-ness to it that is a little heartbreaking.

I saw it immediately when they showed him to me above the blue curtain that separated me from seeing my insides.  There was something about his eyes.  I kept asking if he was ok and everyone in the room reassured me that he was fine.  There was something in their voices that I didn't believe and I couldn't shake those eyes.

I don't know what happened in the nursery when the Dr. told Bob and my Mom.  I've heard Bob's story about it but that's for him to tell.  I was in my room waiting for Cooper to be cleaned up and brought in, hoping that I was wrong and just a paranoid new Momma.  Bob told me how beautiful he was.  That was it.  I knew it.   He told me that they thought he had Down syndrome but I already knew.

I'm still trying to forgive myself for how I responded.  I am deeply ashamed of my reaction.  I sobbed.  I have never cried so hard in my life.  No, no, no!  This was not happening.  I desperately wanted the baby that I had finally come to love.  Who was going to reach things off the top shelf for me?  I didn't want this.  I wanted what I imagined.

What I know now is that what I imagined was never what I was going to have, Down syndrome or not.  I had created this whole person without ever giving my son a chance to show me who he was.  Cooper has taught me so many things in his very short life but the first thing he taught me was that I had placed my expectations on him and it wasn't fair.  Down syndrome or not, he deserved a chance to be whoever he was without all my baggage to carry.  It wasn't for him to make it ok for me to be a mom.  That was up to me.

Those first few days were pretty rough.  I grieved for the loss of the boy who could reach the top shelf.  I still do sometimes when I get overwhelmed.  But mostly I don't even see the Down syndrome any more.  He's just a little boy who I wish I would have celebrated from the instant I saw him rather than wasting so much time in fear.  Don't get me wrong, I loved him immediately but I didn't celebrate him and I deeply regret that.  I didn't celebrate learning of his conception and I didn't celebrate his arrival.  I think that might be why I bombard the internet with every photo, video and quirk of him.  This Momma has a lot of missed celebration to make up for.  You just wait for those birthday parties!

Cooper is amazing.  He has his own timeline.  He has therapists and a little cavity in his chest that freaks everyone out but the Dr.'s say is purely cosmetic.  Really,  everything that is "wrong" with Cooper is cosmetic.  He is a perfectly normal baby.  Who cares if it takes him longer to do stuff?   He laughs.  He reaches out for me.  He smiles.  He gets scared.  He's growing.  He's sitting by himself.  He can do raspberries for hours (no lie!) .  You can tell when he's proud of himself and you can see how hard he tries.  He's already got an amazing sense of humor...raspberries FOR HOURS!  I couldn't ask for anything better.  I wouldn't change a single thing about him.  OK.  That's a lie.  If he would consistently sleep through the night and it didn't alter anything else about him, I would maybe change his sleep patterns :)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Sir Crabby Pants

So, I'm irritated.  No wait.  I'm happy.  No wait.  I'm Hungry.  Wait.  No....I don't want that stinking bottle!  Get it out of here!  Wait...
I don't know what I am.  I've been crabby for days.  Even Mommy can't console me sometimes.  She keeps saying something about teething.  I don't know.  Maybe.  I know that my new favorite thing to do is cry and try to eat Mommy's face. 

Other updates:  I can sit on my own now for about 5 minutes before falling over.  Sometimes I even bend myself completely in half,  face down.  It doesn't bother me but it seems to freak out other people.  I think Mommy is just jealous because she used to be a dancer and now she can't even touch her toes.  Oh.  Sorry.  I guess she can if she really tries.   

All my clothes are shrinking.  None of them seem to fit right anymore.  Maybe it has something to do with "Oh my goodness!  He's getting so big!"  I hear that a lot. 

grumble, grumble, grumble.  I'm too crabby to write anymore so I will attach some pictures.  Enjoy, don't enjoy.  Do what you will.





Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Fortune Cookie Letter

Yesterday I got a fortune cookie and inside it read: "You are good with words.  Write a letter."  My mama ate the cookie and told me that I needed to write a letter.  I don't think that's exactly fair but here goes.

Dear Everyone,
Hello.  How are you?  I am great!  I went to the ENT last week and found out that I can hear!  Oh, wait.  I always knew that I could hear but apparently my mom didn't and this news made her very happy and relieved.  I might have some issues with my right ear.  The Dr. still can't see my ear drum because that ear canal is so small but I'm all good on the left side.  We have to go back in a couple of months to have that right ear checked again.  But I think I hear just fine.

I'm still not rolling over any more.  I did it a few times and I just don't see the big deal.  It's making mama unhappy because she has to fight with the physical therapist.  I think it's kind of fun to watch her get all worked up when the PT tells her that she's not motivating me enough.  When I heard her say "Well, obviously you're not motivating him enough or he would roll over." I thought "Uh-oh, lady.  You better watch out.  She might look all nice but she might cut you."  It was funny.  Her face was really red. Hahaha.

I've become quite the talker and funny man.  In fact, 4 am is the most funny time ever.  It's one of my favorite things to do, wake up telling jokes in the middle of the night.  I used to sleep through the night but once I discovered how funny everything is at night, there's just no going back.  For whatever reason though, no one else thinks my jokes are that good.  I don't get it.  Sleep is for losers.

We're looking for a new place to live.  Time is almost up at the little pink house by the lake.  It was kind of lucky that we got those really hot days to enjoy what it would be like if we really lived here.  We're going to look at houses in Grand Rapids this weekend.  It's so much closer to where mama works and I hear all kinds of talk about saving money on gas not having to drive from Holland to Grand Rapids every day.  I'm sad to leave this house.  It's cozy and was my very first house.  I'm sure mama and daddy will find me an even nicer place though so it will be ok.

I am looking forward to spending spring break with my brother and sister from Chicago.  They are coming up this weekend and spending the whole week (never done that)!  We are going to decorate eggs (never done that) and go on an Easter Egg Hunt (never done that) and go to Great Wolf Lodge for a couple of days (never done that either and it sounds a little dangerous with all those wolves!)  So as you can see, next week is going to be an awesome week filled with all kinds of stuff I've never done.

I hope you have as good a time as me.

Sincerely,
Cooper

P.S.
If you missed it when I did my dramatic reading of Elmo & Cookie Monster, I present to you an encore performance.

video

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Links

If you are friends with my Mom on Facebook you will see that she keeps posting all these links to stories about kids with Down syndrome.  It's kind of annoying.  Yeah, yeah, Mom.  We get it.  Kids with Down syndrome can do everything that every other kid can do.  But I guess I will let it go for now because she explained it to me like this,

"Cooper, when I was growing up, you never saw kids with Down syndrome in school with other kids or on teams or doing anything other than riding around in vans with other kids with Down syndrome.   They went to special schools and people called them retarded and made fun of them for being stupid.  It's only been recently that I've started seeing these adults in the community working, playing, eating out with friends and families, and generally being ordinary citizens.  And it's only been since having you that I even recognized my own prejudices, stereotypes and hurtful words.  I have a lot of atonement to do and the best way I can think to do that right now is to share the stories of you and people like you.  So, you'll just have to get over your embarrassment.  I'm sure it won't be the last time I embarrass you :) "

I guess that's it.  She's determined to do it so we'll all just have to endure.  She means well.  And who knows, maybe someone will understand a little more by what she shares and will learn that I am not stupid because I have Down syndrome.  And maybe she can teach one person that calling someone "retarded" is a terrible word of the past just like other hurtful words we have removed from our daily language.

In other news.  If you rub my belly and make a wish, I think it might come true.  See below.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Hangin' with the Mama


The photo above tells the story of the day.  We spent the day in our jammies doing a lot of napping.  It's nice to be home.  We've been running crazy for about a month and spending a lot of time everywhere but home.  Mama says today is about resting and healing so that's what we're doing.  

Sunday, February 19, 2012

New Word

Today I learned a new word...Generosity.  My mom can't stop using it.  I overheard her talking so many times today about how generous the people in our lives are.  Here is but a small sampling of what I heard:

"Betsy (that's Momma's best friend since the time of the dinosaurs) organized all of the food for the funeral through her brother Steve (a chef) and her sister Becky brought it up from Battle Creek.  Her whole family is so amazingly generous!  Her mom found and purchased dress clothes for Cooper. and Becky is helping me deliver a very important work piece to Grand Rapids so that I don't have to drive out there in the morning.  This is just the beginning of the kind of love and generosity that Betsy and her family have shown us during this horrible time.  I can never thank them enough."


"People from the Red Cross (Grandma was a big volunteer for them) organized a lunch for the family in between visitations today.  What a generous act from an organization my Mom was proud to be a part of.  Thank you for thinking of us today."


"Rosalynn Bliss (Momma's boss) and the leadership team at work have been so generous in their willingness to work with my crazy life over the last few months.  They have been a constant source of support and encouragement for me.  I can't believe how lucky I am to work for such a wonderful group of people at a place that does such good."

As you can see, I've heard this word, generosity, so many times...and this doesn't even begin to cover all the little and big things that people have done for me and my Mom during this time.  Oh, Momma asked me to make sure to include how generous Aunt Annie has been in giving up her life to help care for Grandma and how Aunt Becki had to generously take on the extra work with Aunt Annie being away.  Also, Aunt Valy bought me an awesome outfit and shoes to wear to the funeral....I think that's pretty generous...plus got Grandma's house cleaned for Grandpa.  There are so many people who have done countless acts of kindness for my Mom and our family that their generosity can never be thanked enough.  But I will try.

THANK YOU.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Me and My Grandma

I spent the night with Grandma last night.  We're at this place called The Hospice House of Holland.  Grandma isn't awake anymore and that's really hard on my Momma.  She says that Grandma will just drift off soon and she won't be in anymore pain or have anymore fear.  I'm glad for that but I will miss her very much.  I don't understand why she can't be with us but Momma says we'll get through it and we just have to love her for as long as we have her.  She sang me my first song and I will try to remember that.  I will remember how she rocked me to sleep and our "Grandma Naps."  I will remember that she smelled nice and held me close for as long as she could.  I will remember that I have the best Grandma ever.  But, she told me that she will be watching over me so I guess I don't have to worry that she's too far away.  Get some rest, Grandma because it's going to be hard work keeping up with me!  I love you.

Monday, January 23, 2012

I've been a busy boy

There has been a lot going on since I posted last.  Mommy has been having a hard time with Grandma in the hospital but she told me to stop using that as an excuse and let you all know what's been going on.

As I told you in my last post, I caught my first cold.  I'm still fighting it a little and it didn't help that I got my immunization a few days ago and haven't felt quite right since.  Mamma's arms are getting really strong because I'm not feeling much like sitting by myself these days.  It just feels better to sit with her when I feel bad.   But don't get the wrong idea about me.  I'm no crybaby.  I got my shots and didn't shed a tear when they attacked me with those needles.  Mamma was all worked up and ready for me to scream and cry.  Instead I looked right at her and smiled...I mean, there was this brief second where I thought I might lose it but for Mamma's sake I stayed strong.

We've been at the hospital every day for the last week.  You should see these nurses!  They just won't leave me alone.  Everyone knows my name and when a new nurse comes on who hasn't met me yet, I hear "Is this Cooper that I've been hearing so much about?"  I guess I'm kind of a big deal.  I've been getting to spend lots of time with my Aunt Annie and Aunt Renee.  That's pretty cool but hopefully Grandma will get to go home soon because the hospital is getting old.  We got to change floors yesterday so that was a nice change in scenery.  There are rocking chairs on the second floor and I love to rock. Mom says we try to find the small things to be happy about these days...even if it's just that there are rocking chairs in the waiting room.

I better get going.  Grandma awaits!  Sorry for the delay in the update.  I know this one is not up to my usual standards but I needed to just get it done so I didn't stop all together and ruin Mamma's New Year's resolution.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

My Very First Cold

I am sick.  What the heck?  I don't understand why I can't breath and why I'm so hot and why I neeeeeeed to be glued to my mama's side.  Doesn't make any sense to me.  I did hear Mom say something about it being nice of me to get sick on the same day as my 4 month well baby check-up...I guess those are covered 100%.  I think I should get the $25 difference.  I need it for my college fund.  Do you have any idea how much college is going to cost by the time I get there?!?  So yeah, this sucks.  I am really sleepy but I can't seem to stay asleep for longer than about a half an hour and Grandma couldn't hold me at chemotherapy because I'm contagious or something.  I need to get better so that I can continue to be Grandma's best medicine.

Mama told me to tell you that I weigh 12 lbs and 5 oz and am 24.25 inches long.  That's almost double my birth weight and I've grown over 5 inches in length.  My doctor is very impressed.  I am charting on the typically developing charts and meeting all of my developmental milestones.  I guess that's pretty good or something.  All I know is that right now, I'm too tired to care.  I going to put on my jammies and cry.



Wednesday, January 11, 2012

I am not a stinky boy

I took a bath without screaming my damn head off.  Oh, sorry.  Mommy says "damn" is on the censored list. You'll have to forgive me.   I was very excited because it was the first time ever!  I'm not sure what the problem with baths has been but I really don't like them.  I think it might be post traumatic stress from the first day I was breathing.  They ripped me out and threw me in a bath.  Apparently, there are pictures floating around of the event and they are not pretty.  I think Mommy has decided they are too scary to share so you'll have to trust me on this one.   Plus I'm naked in them and I wouldn't want any potential girlfriends to see me in all my glory.



I sum up today's post below.  Enjoy.

video

Monday, January 9, 2012

Houdini's Got Nothing On Me

I was reminded that people want updates.  What did my mama get me into?
I spent the weekend with my Mom, Daddy, Brothers and Sister, Grandma and Grandpa, in Chicago.  I guess it’s not really Chicago.  It’s a suburb.  Technicalities.  Saturday I went to the library for the very first time.  Matt and Jenna had to go in the kids area but I was allowed into the reading room with the adults.  I think I should have gone with my brother and sister because where I was, everyone was quiet and drinking coffee and being very serious.  There was a copy of Newsweek and The New Yorker in Mommy and Daddy’s hands and there was some guy who looked  like he was trying to be Steve Jobs reading from an I Pad.   Black turtle neck and jeans too.  A little too on the nose for my taste.  It was all very serious so I figured we needed to liven the place up a little.  Apparently you aren’t supposed to be lively at the library.  Mama quickly whisked me up and started bouncing.  She always does that!  She knows exactly what it takes to distract me.  But overall, I would rate the experience as enjoyable.  It was warm and I got to sit between Mama and Daddy on the couch while they read.  I think I’ll go back.

Oh, I was supposed to inform you all that the rolling over wasn’t a fluke.  I did it again…with witnesses this time!

Also, I’ve decided that car seat restraints are for losers.  Today, on the ridiculously long trip from Chicago to Grand Rapids, I decided to work my arms out of the harness.  I’m going for the full break out next time!  I’ll fill you in on my progress.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

My mommy made me start a blog

My mommy has blog envy.  She won't admit it (mostly because she trashed talked bloggers for so long) but she really does.  So welcome to my blog that my mommy is making me keep to satisfy her hidden desire to share every last detail of my life.

Let's see.  What to write about.

My name is Cooper and I was born on September 9, 2011.  I have an extra 21st chromosome....whatever that is.  I guess it's something about having Down syndrome but I don't know what that is either so...

Although I haven't met all that many other kids my age I'm pretty sure that I'm just like every other kid.  Eating, learning, pooping, smiling, crying, ripping out mommy's hair by the handful.  You know, all the good stuff.

I have a pretty busy schedule (see above) so I'm not sure how often I can update you all but mom said something about a New Year's Resolution.  From what I have gathered, I think it's about doing something you've never been able to stick to before.  I guess a new year is supposed to bring new resolve or something.  We'll see.

OK.  First update.  I rolled over yesterday.  That was new.  I think today I will try it again.  It's a lot more exciting than rubbing my face into the floor.

I hear that I'm going to visit Grandma today while she has her chemotherapy and then going with Mommy to work.  Big Day.  I've been told that I'm the best medicine for Grandma.  I hope she gets better because I really love spending the day with her.  It's kind of fun at work with Mom but Grandma and Grandpa's house is so much more fun.  Also, there are dogs at Grandma's and just weird ladies who make weird noises at me at work.

Gotta' go....time to eat!