« Movie: Riding the pony | Main | Movie: Getting the boy to the bath »

February 19, 2008


featuring all (well, mostly) new material, winsome reflections, and a lesson or two learned!

OK, first of all, who we talking about? We talking about the one and only...




The boy's a year old, which means a year ago today we were here:

In some sense we still are. It's not that the experience is unforgettable--to the contrary, the stress of it all kind of makes it hard to remember clearly, or at least it does for me--but rather that it changes you, it becomes part of you. There's a before and an after and from then on it was after.

He was quite calm there at the beginning, a rather misleading first impression as he has since proven to be as active as babies get. Still, given what he'd just been through it's no surprise he was a bit tired:

I especially like how his entire head crinkles up when he yawns in this movie. Fortunately, he's filled out quite nicely:

Yes, he was wrinkly to begin with, but what struck us most of all was how tiny he was:

Note the huge bags under Talia's eyes, and the fact that Felix's ear is no bigger than a brussel sprout.

By definition, his first year was a year of firsts. Now, for your pleasure, a review of the best of these firsts:

The first time he rocked out:

The first time he peed on me (within hours of getting home--funny how it looks like the cow did it--however since then he's only peed on Talia):

His first spy mission, what a sneaky guy:

His first plane ride (he's great on planes):

His first trip to NYC:

His first "werkbeurt" at the garden:

His first boo boo:

And thus his first band-aid:

And right around the same time, by no coincidence I'm sure, the first time he tried to run away from home (he might have gotten away with it if he hadn't tried to take so much stuff with him):

Blowing his first bubbles:

With his first patient:

His first case of motion sickness:

We could go on and on, especially if we started blogging about all the firsts with food, but there's more to get to so we'll end the Firsts with this: his first milk!

In truth he's taken to milk without a hitch, so long as you serve it in a bottle, and thank goodness because we're all out of formula. In all respects he is and remains a great eater, happy to eat, or at least try to eat anything:

He's not the neatest baby you've ever seen however:

The happy result of all this eating is an ever-growing baby:

Which unfortunately means a heavier load day by day:

If you've been following this blog (or listening to us in any other venue) then you know that FM's weak point is sleeping. It's not that he can't fall asleep...

...it's that he won't stay asleep. But that's finally changed! For this I have no footage, so you'll just have to take my word for it: he has finally given us a few uninterrupted nights. A perfect night sees him in bed by seven (where he'll often spend some time pulling on his two music box animals, but within fifteen minutes or so he's out) and then asleep until 5 AM or later when he calls for his bottle. A quick refill and he's out again for an hour or longer. He has done this half a dozen times in the last couple of weeks and already we feel sanity returning. WE ARE GRATEFUL AND HAVE REWARDED HIM WITH A BLUE BALLOON!

Felix has been quick to nail a lot of the various baby milestones. Turning over, crawling, sitting up, standing up, all child's play, so to speak. But what about the biggest, most exciting (to us) milestone of all? Well good news, and JUST IN TIME for his birthday, WALKING. Yes, yes, but let us build to it....

He was an early crawler and a fast one, and he learned to pull himself up things quickly too so he's had little reason to learn walking. Still, he’s had the elements of it for some months: he will happily stand up if he has something to pull himself up with, and he loves running behind his cart, as shown here:

But recently he’s taken it to the next stage. To start with we discovered, quite by accident, that he can stand independently. If sufficiently distracted, he'll simply forget to drop to a crawling position and can easily go several seconds before realizing what he's doing and coming down. Here’s proof:

With this example before us we started to practice walking with him:

This was reasonably successful, so much so that we thought we'd see if we could get him to really walk in time for his birthday. With proper motivation he did!

This footage is from TODAY, so I think we can safely say he walked at 1 year of age. I expect he'll really put it all together within a week or two and then he’ll be running around like crazy and will no doubt abandon the less efficient crawling motion. I’ll really miss the "splap splap" noise of his fat little hands whacking the floor as he goes from point to point though. That, I suppose, is part of growing up.

Before going on with the footage I should follow up on my promise to share a couple of lessons learned. Here are two. #1: If you’re having sleep problems try everything. With us, for example, I think a good deal of his improvement in sleep may have resulted from switching him to non-disposable diapers which keep him drier overnight. Didn’t think of that until month 12. #2: Try splitting the nights one-on-one-off rather than doing it in shifts. May sound harder, may prove easier.

Here’s another one: don’t worry too much about how difficult changes will be. You have to guide a baby through a lot of changes in the first few years, or so the books tell us. For us, every time we thought it was going to be a fight it turned out to be no such thing. We thought he needed his pacifier, that he had to have night feedings, that he was going to miss breast milk. No, no, and no. He will have trouble with some transitions, not everything goes smoothly, and perhaps he would have had more trouble had we tried some of these things sooner, but the point is simply that you can’t necessarily predict what will and will not be a problem, so don’t lose (even more) sleep over it.

OK, now back to the good stuff....

FM’s a great kid, robust, outgoing, fearless, strong, ineluctable...

...and he’s ONE YEAR OLD. Felix Milo Shuldiner you're the greatest and your daddy super loves you, especially when you dress just like he does:

Your mother and I are sorry about all the vaccinations...

...and about making you wear fuzzy hats on cold mornings...

...and I'm still sorry for calling you "babiac"...

...but it's not like you haven't gotten us back now and again...

...and you have to admit we take you on some pretty fun adventures...

...and whatever else happens we promise we'll always be by your side!

Keep going, baby boy, keep going!

Posted by atshuldiner at February 19, 2008 3:38 PM


What an awesome blog entry this is. I've truly enjoyed reading and watching it!


Posted by: Matthijs Monster at February 19, 2008 9:23 PM

Happy birthday Felix ~ the last four photos say what words cannot. You are a lucky and lovely little man!

Posted by: Jess at February 20, 2008 1:52 AM

Dear Felix,
You are a year old today and you gave me a wonderful present – watching you running between the loving arms of your loving parents. Thank you, my dear Bubon.

I want to continue a bit with the theme of ‘firsts’ that you have given us this year; you gave me the first glimpse into grandparenthood. You brought out feelings I never experienced before. Starting with the emotions involved with seeing my ‘little girl’ becoming a mother and continuing with seeing you so sweet, so good, so friendly, so good natured.

The hunger to see your pictures every day, the joy I feel watching your little superb videos, to see your practiced and new moves, to hear your voice is only surpassed by seeing you in person, picking you up, enveloping you in my arms, feel your touch and see you smile close up.

You have brought a lot of joy to our life this year. Thank you.
Thank you, Talia and Alec, for helping us be part of Felix’s life by so diligently making pictures and videos, and thanks my luck to have the technology that allows me to see and hear you almost every day.

My sweet Bubon, you are a very lucky little guy. The second you came to this world you were so loved by so many. You can count on my love to always be with you. We hope to be here for many years to celebrate your birthdays and see you grow up healthy and happy.
Hugs, kisses and a lot of love from Savta.

Posted by: savta at February 20, 2008 3:51 AM

Happy Birthday Felix!!

Posted by: mz at February 20, 2008 5:42 AM

If laughter is the best medicine, then my viewing this wonderful blog has finally banished my lingering cold and provided immunity for the next year. I cannot believe it has been one year.
What a beautiful family and adorable, adorable baby boy. Happy, Happy Birthday Felix!

Posted by: kathy nazar at February 20, 2008 6:28 AM

Bon Anniversaire, FM! We are so lucky that we actually get to enjoy all your charms in person every once in awhile. Love and kisses, Kiki and Colin

Posted by: kiki at February 20, 2008 4:54 PM

fm u t just scrumptious!! thanks for your posting talia & alec, its fun to see it all

Posted by: gizella & veronica at February 20, 2008 11:02 PM

hey Felix

Happy birthday. I'm really glad to see that you started walking and expect you to start talking pretty soon as well, so we could hook up on the internet and start chatting together, like I do with my other friends (I now realize most of them are already two years old, so I guess I'll still have to wait.......)

See you soon


PS My parents also want to say hi

Posted by: mundo at February 22, 2008 10:35 AM

Dearest Felix and Mom and Dad,

Could not come yet did look at his tremendous growth, lovely little Boy!
I hope to come by on a clear spring day and if you are in at the oude schans 156 clearly ring the bell.
Greetings Catharina

Posted by: Catharina Ooijens at February 24, 2008 7:59 PM

Gefeliciteerd Milo, met je eerste verjaardag van je leven! :)

Mooie foto die aan het strand met vader en zoon. Eentje om in te lijsten!

XXX Olga.

Posted by: Olga Busch at February 25, 2008 12:19 PM

Hiep hiep hoeraaaaaa!
(beetje laat maar was weekje in Egypte) Hebben jullie een mooie dag gehad?
veel liefs Sas

Posted by: Sasja at February 29, 2008 11:59 AM