Friday, November 22, 2013

It's Bananas around here.

Ms. Alice Rose turns 6 months old on Monday the 25th of November! And so, perhaps because she is a second child, we gave her a banana today, 3 days shy of 6 months. :)

Here's the photographic evidence: 

She seemed to enjoy it, and we sure enjoyed witnessing her first experience with food! She continued to "play" with it and squeeze it in her fingers for a few more minutes after she stopped bringing it to her mouth. It was just a joy to watch! Yay, I love this age so much! Can't wait to introduce her to all kinds of yummy foods in the upcoming weeks and months. And what a lucky baby - one of her first meals will be Thanksgiving! :)

Saturday, November 16, 2013

How we celebrated the big girl this year!

For Eliza's birthday this year we told her she could choose what she wanted to do  after school. Daddy took the afternoon off and we all headed to Eliza's chosen location: the Mall of America!

It was quite a packed afternoon. Lunch, rides, Lego store, candy store, the aquarium, and of course cake!

The girl sure knows how to have fun! We had a really fun day together. I think this night be an annual tradition!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

She's Four.

My miracle baby is now four!  

I could say that I don't really believe it and that time has flown... and while those things are somewhat true, it also feels like it was a lifetime ago that she was born.  These four years... they have been a lot of work.  A lot of hard hard work.  Not always easy, but usually fun and interesting, but hard.  Best four years of my life, and also the hardest four years of my life.  So while they have gone by quickly, they also haven't, if that makes any sense (and I know it doesn't!). 

Anyway, Eliza, at FOUR whole years old:

Loves to dance her crazy dance moves in the kitchen while I sing or while we listen to the radio (or in public while waiting in lines :)

She's a music lover.  We listen to a lot of classical music in the house, but when it's dance party time, she likes Katy Perry, Mumford & Sons, and Walk Off the Earth.  And it's pretty cute to hear her try to decipher the lyrics.

(She said: "look mom, I'm being a plant!)

Independence.  Are there any four year olds who aren't independent, though?  But she's so good at it, that I just can't complain about it!  The child wants to do so much to help and wants to do so much for herself, and you know what?  I find her genuinely helpful.  She sets the table every night, she brings in the recycling bins after the recycling is picked up, she starts the dishwasher, she makes us fruit salad, she can get her own snack, she gets herself dressed, handles pottying/hand washing by herself, plays independently... the kid could move out and live by herself at age four!  Ha!  Ok not really.

She is so smart.  I think I've said this every year.  Now it probably just sounds like I'm bragging.  I know I'm biased... but man, she startles me with her intelligence sometimes.  She picks up even the littlest things the first time she hears them...and never seems to forget them.  Her memory is insane.  She has memories from a CRAZY long time ago.  She remembers things from two years ago, when she was only 2!

(Girl's got soul)

Eliza is a wonderful sister.  There was pretty much no transition to speak of when Alice was born and came home from the hospital.  It was so seamless.  It was like Eliza was just waiting for Alice all along, and when she got here, it was sort of like "yeah, that's my sister, so let's go home now!" and she just started living as a big sister like the whole thing was old hat to her.  She really impressed me.  Sure, she still can't seem to remember when Alice is sleeping that she needs to use quiet voices, and that can make this mama pretty annoyed... but then I think of the amazing things she does as Alice's sister - how she makes her laugh, how she loves her so much... and I know that waking up her baby sister is really a minor offense in the grand scheme of things.  I love watching them together; they are both so very lucky to have one another.

Preschool is going well!  Eliza's teachers report that she is very intellectual, focused and always on-task.  Her sense of justice has become highly developed, so any student who is out of line or rude/mean/aggressive in Eliza's view gets the evil eye from her.  While Eliza may try to test the waters at home (and oh boy DOES SHE), at school she's the model student.  I guess that's how it should be, right?

She is crafty and creative, and I love seeing what she comes up with.  She loves to paint, draw, cut shapes out of paper, glue, make "mixtures" out of anything she can get her hands on, bake, help cook... anything that is hands-on, messy, arty, she's up for it. Dress up, playing pretend, make believe, it's all in full swing at this age, and it's a joy to watch and listen to see what she comes up with. Her imagination is a beautiful place!

This girl is like her mama in many ways and one of those ways is sensitivity.  She is SO sensitive - physically and emotionally.  Loud noises, strong smells, sun that's too bright, itchy clothing tags, etc... pretty much anything that offends any one of her senses in even the slightest way is cause for major concern. (See below - she was hungry.)

Year three was a bit rough, overall.  The more parents I talk to, the more I believe that "The Terrible Twos" is a phrase that is overused and overstated.  The threes were harder on us, for sure.  But, every age has its ups and downs, its good and its frustrating moments.  That's just life.  She's just a kid trying to figure out where she fits in this world, looking for both comfort from mom and dad as well as independence at the same time.  Her job is to explore, to observe and to make sense of her world.  It's not always an easy task for her, I'm confident of that, and guiding her through her childhood is a privilege, even on the hardest most frustrating days.

Cheers to another year, my little love.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Alice Rose, 5 months

These people think they can use me as a prop to get their kicks?  Shame!

Alice turned 5 months old on October 25th.  Trying to keep these monthly updates going!  REALLY TRYING HARD, you guys. 

Alice is rolling both ways now, and is quite pleased with this new found ability.  It was pretty funny - literally the next day after I posted that photo post about how pissed off she gets when she's on her belly, I found her half way across the living room after I'd put her down - she'd rolled her way like 5 feet in one direction!  So, that's been a nice development for her; less of Teh Madness.

She's not quite sitting up yet, and even her tripod sitting is kinda wobbly.  So I think we have a while to go yet on that front.  I do sit her up against the Boppy, which she really seems to enjoy.  I think she's going to be really pleased when she can sit.  You know, the view is just so much better sitting upright than it is laying on the floor!

She's nursing, obviously, I mean she's only five months old so perhaps that goes without saying.  But just for the record books, she's nursing and doing it about every 3-4 hours, sometimes more.  Overnights are going pretty well, she's waking to nurse 2-3 times.  Some nights are better than others and I wake up with hope in my heart that every night will be like that, but then she promptly blows that thought out of my head the next night.  So, it's up and down, but meh, what can you do?  She's a baby.  Babies are just biologically programmed to sleep like crap.  I'm sort of ~over~ obsessing about it.  (until next month)

Alice makes the cutest little sounds in her sleep.  I like to call her a dramatic sleeper.  I remember Eliza being a dramatic yawner - like she made the most dramatic yawning sounds whenever she was tired... and Alice does a similar thing in her sleep.  I hear her take a deep breath and then let it out loudly, and with a sound, too.  It's so cute!  Random, but just had to throw that in there.

When offered milk from a bottle, Alice is a champ - she's so chill about it, too.  "A bottle? Of milk? HELLS YES!"  Or something like that.  Anyway, yay, the baby will take a bottle.  Now we just need to actually take advantage of this amazing party trick sometime soon.  Yes, it's true, we've yet to go on a post-baby, sans-baby, date.  For shame.  It will happen soon, I promise!  (I just said that to my husband, so thought I should put it in writing here too.)

Alice, you just rock.  You're so awesome and friendly, so happy and sweet, so cuddly and... and... all baby like.  I just adore you and your baby ways.  You make me want another baby.  If all babies were this easy, I'd have a house full.  Unfortunately, you small humans are not inexpensive, and adorable baby-ness doesn't pay the mortgage, folks.  If it did, I'd be rich.

Mama loves you, sweet baby girl.  You light up my days, I would hold on to you forever if the universe would let me.

(Oh, and ps I'm sorry your footie pjs have a hole in the toe, and that I didn't discover it until AFTER you'd been out in the cold with your little toe just sticking right out in the back of the cold car!)

Friday, November 1, 2013


Obligatory and super cute sibling photo: 

My little bee and my wizard fairy.

Eliza chose the wizard costume when she was staying with her Nana and PopPop early in October.  It's a costume that Andy's sister wore!  Last night, when it was time to leave for trick or treating, she decided to put her fairy wings on and she called herself a wizard fairy! I loved how creative she was about it. It was so sweet. 

Then off we went to meet some neighborhood friends to go trick or treating together. It was so memorable. I have never gotten "into" Halloween very much, but wow, having kids and watching them (well, just Eliza so far!) enjoy it and get so excited about it... It has completely changed my mind about Halloween. I officially love Halloween as a parent. As a college student? Not so much, but now -- definitely. 

I can't wait to watch this little bee of mine grow up and pick out Halloween costumes!

It was a fun night. And after just one block, Eliza told me she was ready to go home - ha! I think she was so completely amazed at how much candy she had already gotten, she wanted to go home and look at it all (and have a piece or two, which we let her do - yes, before bedtime :). 

Then, today we asked her how she thought we should handle all this candy -- we'd talked about how our family shouldn't eat it all and how it would make our bodies unhappy if we did. So we talked and she decided it would be nice if we chose one piece of candy for dessert for a few days, and then daddy could bring the rest to his office to share with his coworkers. It was SO reasonable of her! I was really blown away. I guess I give her too little credit! She understood that she really should not eat all that candy, and she was even ok with it. So on Monday daddy will bring all the candy left in the house to work with him.

I am so proud of my big girl, and I had a lot of fun celebrating Halloween with her. Can't wait to jump into the Holidays with my two girls! This parenting thing just keeps getting better, doesn't it?

Eliza's Stats

Birth: 8 lbs 5 ozs
Going home: 7 lbs 10 ozs
5 days: 7 lbs 13 ozs
2 months: 12 lbs 6 ozs
4 months: 17 lbs
5 months: 18 lbs 12 ozs
6 months: 20 lbs 13 ozs
9 months: 24 lbs 3 ozs
12 months: 26 lbs 13 ozs
15 months: 28 lbs
18 months: 29 lbs 3 ozs
2 years: 32 lbs
3 years: 34 lbs

Alice's Stats

Birth: 8 lbs 11 oz
2 Months: 13 lbs 10 oz
4 Months: 17 lbs 15 oz
6 Months: 20 lbs 4 oz