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Category: Weekly Growth Series

52 Weeks

This video (now almost two years old!) just won an award as part of a Williams video competition, Movie Madness. It has been such a joy to revisit the project. James and I may have to revive its spirit in a new iteration to celebrate Sunny’s half decade birthday. I can’t believe it’s had almost 10,000 views on Vimeo. Very special, indeed.

52 Weeks

I am stupidly proud and happy with the result of our Weekly Growth series. Despite a few gaps in the process and wide variation in photo quality and lighting, James was able to compile a video that captures Courtland’s first year of growth. Watch as she goes from wriggly, little blob to full on motor-skilled baby.

As always, many thanks to my incredibly talented husband for putting this vision together. And to Rabbit! for providing the perfect song.

Week 52

We’ve made it to the end. 52 weeks of wrestling and bribing two little girls. 52 weeks of funny faces and silly dances. 52 weeks of memories. 52 weeks of growth.

It has been a joy compiling the video of all of the images. I hope that it will be ready to share next week. It’s amazing to watch Courtland so vividly transform from a relatively motionless blob to a crawling, toddling, busy, pain in the neck.

Sunny is in motion. For 52 weeks. But it’s very amusing to see her start reacting to her sister’s antics as the weeks go on.

As I’ve gone back and read each weeks thoughts, in some ways, very little has changed.

Courtland is still a terrible sleeper.

And I’m still humbled by the love and gratitude I feel to call such a terrible sleeper my own.

Courtland: 52 weeks
Addison: 38 months

Week 51

I’m sharing these late – but the series is complete! And I shall be compiling a video of the year soon enough. 52 weeks sure did fly! I’ll share the final week’s images shortly.

I can’t stop staring at my two beautiful little girls. Not a baby in sight. *sigh*

Courtland: 51 weeks
Addison: 38 months

Week 49

This week’s images are a bit fuzzy, but we’re presenting them anyway for fear we’ll miss these final weeks altogether if we don’t. Hard to believe that in three weeks, Courtland will be one full year. So much has happened, and yet, it feels like just yesterday I was rolling around the Berkshires with a 9 month belly filled with baby and ice cream.

Courtland: 49 weeks
Addison: 38 months

Week 48

First and foremost, Sunny would want me to draw immediate attention to her not one, not two, but FOUR braids. The girl’s got her own style.

What you don’t see in this picture is the goose egg protruding out of Kaki’s right temple after she crawled away, stood up on the bed, and face planted into the window crank of the sky light.


She takes her nickname very seriously.

Courtland: 48 weeks
Addison: 37 months

Week 47

Remember these?

Yeah, me neither.

Fortunately, James jogged my memory and after a 15 week hiatus, the Weekly Growth Series is back. A lot has happened since the last shots. Just look at those chompers Courtland’s flashing! And the mobility!

The girls are as cute and crazy as ever. Now off to a day of play at Tanglewood, serenaded by sweet baby James (Taylor). Happy 4th to all of you!

Courtland: 47 weeks
Addison: 37 months

Week 32

Whoa Nelly! Sunny’s face in the series below about sums up my current state of being.

Equal parts excited and overwhelmed. A dash annoyed at Miss Courtland Whaley (i.e. The Teething Velociraptor). And a hefty serving of exhausted. Okay, Sunny doesn’t look exhausted in the least. She’s a ball full of preschool energy and chaos. But Mama sure is beat. For a combination of happy and heartbreaking reasons. Such is the ying and yang of life.

Of course the baby would decide to crack her first teeth, plural, on the same weekend that we started moving into our new home and that I hosted a grand ol’ baby shower. More on the shower and house later, as there are so many things to be said and posted about those two events. But for now I will merely state that Courtland has two bottom teeth erupting. Mama’s got resulting sore nipples and saggy eyes (or is it saggy nipples and sore eyes? Honestly, the adjectives are more than interchangeable). Sunny has developed a love affair with headbands and the color pink (I blame preschool for that stereotypical choice). And James has put a hole in the wall of the new house. Already. I leave the man alone for two hours, only to find that he has removed a wall in the kitchen because he has a GREAT idea for some custom cabinets.

I have never seen him so contented and energized. Home ownership suits him. Very much.

Even if it means that we’re living in a house with gapping holes of plaster and dry wall.

Also, as the counterpoint to all of last week’s exciting news, something happened that about split my heart in two. I’ve been distracted and my heart has been aching for a dear friend ever since. Yet another reminder that despite our best efforts, life plows ahead. Messy. And beautiful. And complicated. And without warning or reason.

Anyone can slay a dragon, he told me, but try waking up every morning & loving the world all over again. That’s what takes a real hero. – StoryPeople

Courtland: 32 weeks
Addison: 34 months

Week 31

Sweet lordy, we’re behind. But I promise I shot these images last Saturday. Pinky swear, even.

Now why don’t you come over and we’ll braid each others hair and gossip about boys?  Sunny will join us. Because she now only functions with two braids firmly planted on her head. But James isn’t allowed, because he pulls. And it hurts. Silly boy.

So, it’s busy. I’m currently writing this with Kaki latched to the right boob, feverishly pulling my much shortened hair (still long enough for tug-o-war, apparently) and pinching and gripping any loose skin within reach (re: my now very saggy bosoms). When she isn’t fitfully sucking and biting and grabbing and expressing her general discomfort and frustration with teething, she’s spending her time in plank pose, trying to figure out how the hell to propel her body forward without once again landing squarely on her head.

Also, we’re on the verge of some very exciting news.

And no, I am not pregnant, MOM.

If all goes accordingly to plan, I’ll share the happy announcement here.

If not, you can come over and we’ll braid each others hair and drown our feelings in tubs of Ben and Jerry’s.

Sunny is gunning for the latter scenario. Anything in the name of ice cream.

Courtland: 31 weeks
Addison: 34 months

Week 29

Despite this weekend’s shit show (ba-boom, ching!), we managed to shoot Week 29. We missed Week 28, so there was no way in puke-covered Hades I was missing this week. Sure, Addison had thrown up earlier that day and James was still a permanent resident in one of our bathrooms (I don’t think I have ever been so grateful for a home equipped with three bathrooms. Ever), and then Courtland took it upon herself to spit up all over Sunny’s hair and our bed mere minutes into the shoot but GUESS WHAT?! I am now the expert Barf-Cleaner-Upper. Seriously. I am a bodily fluid cleaning Olympian! My children are nurturing this skill. How supportive!

Suffice it to say, I shot an abbreviated Week 29. And here it is folks. Brava, me.

It started out a bit rocky with Addison refusing to relinquish her blanket and Courtland practicing her four-limbed mobility, but we had a brief 60 seconds of success, and then? Bile! Duh!

Courtland: 29 weeks
Addison: 33 months