Wednesday, April 17, 2013

12 months

Shepherd had his first birthday on the 13th of this month. It's hard to believe it's already been a year since that one time when he was born. We are so grateful he's healthy and happy.

These days, Shepherd . . .

  • Loves washcloths. I hear some kids have "loveys" and washcloths must be Shep's? He carries them around with him as he crawls around and waves them like flags and wipes stuff down with them. Is he mimicking my sometimes hyperactive cleaning habits? 

  • Can stand on his own but is too much of a wimp to do so.
  • Is much more confident crawling and has developed a real crawl rather than his earlier army crawl--so he comfortably gets around on his own now. He still wants us to pick him up and be interacting with him most of the time, but occasionally he will go exploring on his own.
  • Still loves for us to walk with him by holding his hands.
  • Can understand some phrases we repeat often. 
  • Has started throwing tantrums a bit. Watch out for the terrible twos! Sometimes, when we make him do something he doesn't like, he screams and thrashes about. It's a little bit unsettling.
  • Plays with toys and things way more often and is much better about doing so by himself. He particularly loves putting things in containers and pulling things out of containers. He is also keen on passing items back and forth with us and of course inserting items, including his hands, in our mouths. He also likes taking lids on and off when no twisting is required.
  • Loves finger food and eating by himself, but he's a picky eater. His favorites are fruit and bread. We're making some effort to keep him away from added sugar as long as we have control over what goes into his mouth, so he had a bran muffin for his birthday cake. Awesome, right? I figure one-year-olds don't actually care about cake anyway.
  • Speaking of controlling what goes into his mouth, he was eating a used wipe one day and some used cloth diapers another day. Constant vigilance is necessary and my vigilance hasn't been amazingly constant.
  • With some prompting, Shep can blow into a recorder. He also does this funny thing where he hums through his nose while we pinch it for him. It is so funny!
  • Claps and waves (though he doesn't wave consistently, he understands its functional purpose, I believe), and likes to get us to clap our hands.
  • Has 4 teeth (his two front and bottom) and the cutest developing tooth gap on top.

  • Helps us when we're dressing him by sticking his arms and legs through the proper holes. He knows how to do it.
  • Diversifying his babbling repertoire with new sounds. He is becoming quite long-winded.
  • Still hates his car seat and still wakes up 3-4 times a night, sadly. He is back on a good schedule with naps, though! 
  • When he's not a grumpy pants, he is very smiley and happy to laugh at pretty much any moment. His sense of humor is developing, too, and that's fun to watch.

Friday, April 5, 2013

baby's first year in dollars

Shep is turning one-year-old next week (crazy, right?). To commemorate his birthday, I thought I'd tally up just how much he's cost us.

Total cost: $4497.67


Just a few notes about these figures:

  • We've spent a pretty decent portion of the diapering portion on cloth diapers, which we started doing gradually after Shep was bigger. I think the savings by using cloth diapers are going to start factoring in more in the future, since it was a large upfront cost. We use a mix of cloth and disposables, so we do have some disposable diaper expenses still.
  • We purchased most of Shep's clothes and toys second-hand.
  • There is no "feeding" category because Shep hasn't needed formula or specifically formulated baby food. He's just breastfed and/or eaten real people food.
  • We received several things as gifts both before he was born and since. These gifts aren't totally accounted for here, but I estimate the value of everything we received to be probably somewhere around $500.
  • The "healthcare" category includes our coinsurance responsibility for the hospital birth and a (partially subsidized by insurance) breast pump. That's all the expenses in that category.
  • The miscellaneous includes a lot of the big things: a crib (which we don't use! argh!), glider/rocking chair, car seat, stroller, 2 Ergo baby carriers (I lost one, sadly), a bike trailer, and 7 nursing covers. (Seriously, I have purchased 7 nursing covers. I lost 2, bought one I didn't like, and then bought 4 more that were being sold in a bundle. I figure I'll use them!)
Has anyone else tried to estimate the cost of their child in the first year? How do we compare? We've tried to be frugal, but I'm not sure if we've succeeded.