January 17, 2011

The longest post ever (also the first post ever)

Dear Lily,

            Just the other day you turned 8 months old.  I can’t believe how fast you are growing up.  I look at you and I already see the little girl you are becoming.  I’m trying to hold on to these baby days as long as possible.  I know I will look back and think how little you were at 8 months, but right now all I see is my big girl.  You are changing every day and discovering so many new things.  I am starting this journal of sorts so that someday I can let you read all of the beautiful things that happened in your life before you can remember. I love you so dearly little girl. I have been known to exclaim that I love you so much I feel as though I may burst in an explosion of confetti hearts.

I suppose I will just fill this first post with as many random anecdotes I can think of.  Forgive me if I jump all over the place!

A look back at your 8th month (December 2010):
Here you are on your 8-month birthday (1/5/11) with Ugly Doll. We take your picture with him every month
You have started reaching.  When you are sitting on the floor you put your arms out so we can pick you up.  Also, when your daddy is holding you you reach out a hand to me and vice versa.  It isn’t an attempt to get the other person to hold you, it is more of an acknowledgement, like “I see you right there and I love you!”

You love to blow raspberries and have for many months.  It makes your Papa crack up!

You have also started doing this thing where you cock your head (and sometimes your whole torso) to the side like you are looking at things from a different angle. It is adorable. I love watching as you see new things; everything is a wonder in your eyes, and therefore in mine as well.

You are a champion sitter now. You can sit forever reaching for different toys and banging and chewing.  Every once and awhile you will still topple over, but I think it is the diaper in your way. 

You want to crawl so badly and I can see the wheels turning, you are figuring it out.  I’m pretty sure one of these days you are just going to take off.  You are so squirmy now when I change your diaper. As soon as the diaper comes off your legs are up in the air with your feet in your hands. You also love when we give you naked time on a towel on the floor because it is easier to move around without the big cloth diaper. I crack up at your cute bum wiggling around on the floor.

You have started waving.  It isn’t quite a determined hello or goodbye wave,  more of just an absent-minded little flap of the hand, but you know what it means.

Every morning when I get you up from your crib we have to say good morning to the animals on your mobile (Mr. Owl, Mr. Squirrel, Mr. Raccoon, and Mr. Fox) and thank them for the good sleep. If I try to walk away before saying good morning to them you crane your body around to reach for them.  Sometimes you wave at them when we are done.

You have four teeth now! Your looks are changing so fast as the two top teeth are peeking their way through.  The top teeth seem to be more painful (it makes sense, they are bigger!) and they were waking you up sometimes at night.  Overall though, you are such a trooper and there is very little complaining, just a lot of biting on everything (thankfully not on Mama). I love your toothy little grin, it cracks me up. When your bottom teeth were coming in you were always flicking your tongue over your bottom gums, now you are doing it on top. You stick your fingers in there trying to feel what is going on.

There are those bottom teeth!

You have excellent belly laughs.  Sometimes you will just see one of us doing something across the room and we will get a chuckle out of you.  When you are really excited the laugh starts with kind of a scream/squeal.  When you get sleepy you laugh more easily.  Usually Daddy or I will kiss your belly or neck or nuzzle you all over you to make you giggle.  You also like when Daddy is holding you and I run at you really fast, or if Daddy helps you peek around corners at me.  We are totally absorbed by your happiness and get absolutely nothing productive done when you are in a giggly mood.

You are completely in love with your Daddy, and the feeling is very mutual.  You light up as soon as you see him and he gets huge grins and giggles out of you.  I know you love your Mama, but Daddy has a special spot with my girl.

You also have Papa wrapped around your little finger. You give him a smile every time you see him. He always thanks you for your smile and says if you keep doing that he will do absolutely anything for you (and he means it). Papa always positions himself to be the one who gets you up after a nap if he is around because you are so happy after your nap. When he brings you down you sit with him in his chair.  There are a few minutes where you are still kind of sleepy and you will just lay in his lap all content.  Soon you wake up and want to start moving, so he cherishes those few minutes.

Going to get your picture taken with Santa!

You have started giving the best snuggles. I wasn’t sure at first, but I’m pretty confident you know what you are doing when you lay your head on my shoulder for a hug.  When I say "give Mama a kiss" you will lean your head in and I get to kiss your forehead, cheek, nose, and SOMETIMES lips.  Be still my heart.

You are a pretty good sleeper, though lately teething has been making it more bumpy.  For naps we read a story then you hold your lovey and we bounce on the ball and sing until your eyes get droopy, then put you in your crib. You always flip to your stomach now to sleep.  Your naps are usually anywhere from an hour and 15 min to 2 ½ hours, though every once and awhile you sneak in a shorty 45 min.  You are usually taking two naps a day unless you have short ones, then maybe a third.

At night we change you into your jammies and put on a nighttime diaper (extra padding for absorbency). Then I nurse you, and Daddy reads you a couple of stories. Next one of us will turn on your white noise machine and the fan, turn off the lights and sing you the night night song. This is a song I made up when you were just days old and I have sung to you every night (except when Daddy sings it or you pass out while nursing and before I sing you the song). It is a silly tune and silly lyrics I sang off the top of my head one night: ‘Cause it’s night night time for the baby girls, yes it’s night night time for the baby girls, yes it’s night night night night time, yes it’s night night night night time (and repeat once more). While I sing it I walk around the room and bounce you to the beat. Then we sit on the ball and bounce and sing (either you are my sunshine or hush little baby) until you close your eyes. Sometimes if you are having trouble settling down, I just have to switch songs and you are out.

In the middle of the night if you wake up I will change your diaper and nurse you and then Daddy burps you and bounces you and puts you back in your crib.  We watch you on our video monitor, you are so cute with your big cloth diaper booty.

You spend 3 days a week at Nani and Papa's and you LOVE it. Nani comes to get you in the morning and you are so happy to see her. I miss you all day when I’m at work, but you are having so much fun without me! I really don’t think they could possibly love you more. You light up their lives and it is obvious you are just as in love with them. We feel so lucky to have people who love you take care of you when we are at work, I couldn’t ask for a better situation (unless someone would pay me to stay home with you every day!)

You don’t get to see your Grandpa Roy as often, but when you do, man does his face light up. You are the 10th grandbaby and he still has just as much room in his heart for his little Lily. I know he can’t wait to take you fishing up in Thuya as soon as you can hold a fishing pole.

Nursing is still going pretty well. You are very distractible so I can’t often get you to nurse on both sides.  As soon as you are done on one side you are ready to play! This just means I have to nurse more often, which I don’t really mind.  You take a bottle of breastmilk like a champ! You are also doing really well with solid foods.  So far you love: sweet potatoes, carrots, pears, peaches, plums, bananas, peas, butternut squash, oatmeal and rice. You were not a big fan of avocado, yogurt or green beans…we will try again.

The other day I cooked some peas and put them on your tray for you to try picking them up. You did pretty well pinching them, but not so much getting them in your mouth.

Your hair gets more crazy every day. It is so curly and all different lengths. The longest parts are right behind your ears! On days you don’t get a bath, sometimes your hair gets flat on top and Nani and Papa say you have hair like “Dwight Schrute” from “The Office”, or worse, like Justin Bieber!

You LOVE baths! You love your ducky tub that quacks and your little rubber ducky. I love swirling all your hair on top of your head when it is soapy! I think you would stay in there kicking and splashing for hours, but we take you out before you get cold.

You are REALLY into clapping right now, happy or sad, you clap.  It was so fun to see you studying everyone’s hands and watching people clap and looking at your hands, then one day you figured it out. You will also clap with your feet which makes Nani and I giggle.

You love music. When music plays on the TV you stop and listen, sometimes you clap after a song. When we are in the car if you are tired and fussy I play your favorite song “Teenage Dream” on my iPhone and you immediately calm down and listen. Sometimes you smile, clap or kick your legs too! You like the original Katy Perry version, but your favorite is the cover they did on “Glee” by Darren Criss. No other song works as well or as consistently as this one.

You love to use your loud voice. You just yell and yell, not because you are unhappy, but because you like to yell! You also have a cute whisper voice.  You say “dadada’ and “mamama”, but I’m not sure you totally relate them to Mama and Dada yet.

You sit in highchairs at restaurants and you are so good, especially if we give you a rice cracker to much on. You love watching all the people, especially other kids.

We don’t get out for enough walks right now because it is so cold, but when we do, you just love it. You just quietly take in everything around you. You love being outside and love trees.

You were so happy during the holidays because you love Christmas lights and sparkly things (just like your Mama). I didn’t want to take our tree down because you loved looking at the lights (even though we only put on 3 ornaments this year!) You also really enjoyed all of the family time. Daddy’s family is so big and you love seeing all of your aunts and uncles and cousins. You were the hit of every holiday party. Christmas eve you even helped sing and play at the piano on Auntie Em’s lap!

You got a few new toys for Christmas this year, but we knew you would get more enjoyment out of the wrapping paper and boxes than anything else. Here is a video of you enjoying a Christmas present:

WOW! That was a lot! I count my blessings every day that you are in my life. My smiley, happy, snaggle toothed mop-top. Over the next few weeks I hope to go back and record special things that I can remember from the first months of your life up until now. It has been such an adventure and there is oh so much more to come. Here we go!

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