Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Solstice, Christmas and oh, so close to ONE

Dear Pea,
Yesterday was your first Christmas. We indoctrinated you into the world of Jewish traditions: Chinese food and a movie. Except Daddy and I prefer The West Wing, so that's what we watched. You had a ball at the Chinese restaurant, happily eating rice and my veggies-it turns out we are perfect friends for Chinese food because I hate baby corn and you happily ate it for me.  You also were quite smitten with the staff and spent a good amount of time in the arms of the servers and cashiers, coming back to the table with treasures they gave you: oranges and fortune cookies. It's so funny who you want to go to-the woman came to take our order, she made some goo goo noises at you and you reached out for her to take you.  Our dining companions, good friends who we love spending Christmas with? Not so much as a snuggle.

We had a lovely Solstice celebration as a family and then I went out for my first girl's spa night out with your special aunties R & B. I hadn't been in the saunas and pools since you were literally the size of a pea in my belly; this time was much nicer as I wasn't nauseous in the water.

our Solstice altar

Since Hanukkah, you have been sick. You came down with Roseola the second night and spent a couple of days with a little fever, though no other symptoms.  Then you got a little mild cold with a runny nose for a couple of days.  I hastened it along with some gua sha: BOOM, did it come out, and strong. You had such a fever and were miserable, we gave you Tylenol (again, half a dose) for the second time. But, as these gua sha helped along illnesses tend to do, it came out, burned through and left you feeling totally fine the next day, though still with a cough and runny nose.  And so, here we are, a week out from your birthday and you sound a bit like Darth Vader and look a bit like Rudolph. But you are happy and playful and requesting that we read you book after book after book.

Your favorite things this week:
  • My wallet.  Oh, do you love taking apart my wallet.  This will keep you occupied for an hour or more-it's perfect for when I have a phone client. 

My empty wallet behind you, its contents strewn about

  • The xylophone app we downloaded on the iPad.  I never wanted to be that parent, Sweet Pea, the one who turns to technology. But, oh, do you love this. 

  • Books books books!! You play with them on your own, you request that Daddy and I read them to you (by holding it out to us and then sitting expectantly), you take them off the shelves constantly. 
  • Dancing to music.  You have progressed from your arm in the air dance to bending both knees and bouncing while music plays. This is adorable, and yet throws us for a loop when we try to get you ready for bed by playing your sleepy music and you start dancing.
  • Chocolate. Oh, yes, you love chocolate. It's the good stuff: 85%, very low sugar, fair trade, organic.  

This was taken the day you had the fever and were miserable.  This is you sick. Of course, the whole day wasn't like this, but you rally and have fun and generally love life. It shatters me, Sweet Pea. I have so much to learn from you

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

11 and a half months!

Dear Pea,
Here are some notes and thoughts about you at this time in your life.

You aren't quite sure how to play with other kids yet.  You will happily get in the mix of a crowd, but you like to get a couple of balls or roundish toys and play with them while watching the chaos around you.  If another kid takes your balls, you will try to get it back, but if you can't, you'll look for another toy. You don't really get upset. You will take toys from another baby if they let you. Sometimes you will pass it back and forth if the baby is about your age but more often you just play with it in front of them.  If they get upset, you will leave or give it back.

I have seen you try to comfort a crying baby by offering a toy or a snack.  I have also seen you ignore a crying baby, even if you are both right next to each other. Or if I'm holding you both.

Cashews upset your stomach. You like to eat them, but almost immediately, you get diarrhea and poop them back out undigested.

You love my mama friends and are happy to be with them, though some more than others. One in particular, you will follow around and request that she pick you up.  She often does Baby Boot Camp with you in her arms since her son is happier playing and you're happy with her. Seems to be that you like blondes...

Your hair is coming in more and more. It's light brown, soft as feathers and curling in the back, little tufts of ringlet.

We're having a lot more success with you being happy even if I'm not around. I went to a meeting yesterday for two and a half hours and you were very happy to hang with Daddy.  And then later went to teach class and you were fine again.  You're happy with the babysitters at the YMCA, throwing your arms out to them when we walk in the door (the blonde one especially).  Next up, secure a real babysitter.  Maybe.  This is a tough one, but you are almost one year old and my business is picking up a bit.  It would be so wonderful if we found a sitter that you loved.  We'll start with the blondes.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Prayers for Olympia

Dear Pea,
Our special friend Olympia is very sick.  She is in California being treated for a mysterious blood condition that appears to be autoimmune in nature.  She has almost no platelets. Her white blood cells are very low.  And yet, she is a smiling, happy baby.  She is almost eight months old now and was in attendance, in utero, at your birth.  We very much want her to get well soon and stay healthy, continuing to grow and thrive and continue bringing so much light to the world.

This year, we are lighting two menorahs each night of Hannukah, one for our family and one for hers.

You, me and Olympia in May

Olympia and her mama now, snuggling in her hospital bed

Steps, reading and the way you dance

Dear Pea,
On the first night of Hanukkah, which was also your Bobob's birthday, you took your first step. One. And then sat down and clapped for yourself. Amazing on so many levels.

You have been pulling yourself up a lot more often, reaching for higher drawers and chairs. You will stand at a dresser or your highchair and play standing for a while before moving on to the next thing.  You have also lately been much more interested in books. You will play with them, turning the pages and spinning the book in your hands. This is a far cry from the early months where you would slap the book out of my hand if I tried to read to you, even if you were playing nearby.  Now, you will crawl into my lap with a book and we will read it together.  And you have finally started dancing!  I'm using that term very loosely: your version of dancing is to raise one arm and flop it around.  You do this whenever music comes on.  Occasionally both arms get in on the action, but usually just one. You like dancing, though; it always gets big smiles.

When you are finished with a particular toy or piece of food, you throw it behind your back. You will go through your entire block set, picking up two blocks at a time and throwing them over each shoulder.  You do this with a purpose-apparently you like the block container much better empty. And speaking of toys, you really aren't that into them.  You like things that aren't supposed to be toys. CD cases. Phone chargers.  Onions.  Oh, the onions. They kept you entertained for an hour or more

in process of throwing toys behind you

you brought them from the kitchen into the living room. And then peeled them

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


Dear Pea,
You have started talking in your sleep. I might die from cuteness overload

Monday, November 26, 2012


Dear Pea,
I was so hopeful that we would not have to give you Tylenol during your first year. So determined to make that a last last resort, praying that acupressure and gua sha and homeopathic remedies would be enough.  But with your last illness, your temperature rose and after a sleepless night of wailing and discomfort, we called the doctor who told us to give you Tylenol, and we did immediately. Half a dose only, because your mama is crazy. It was like magic. Within 15 minutes, you settled down, your fever dropped and you slept most of the day.  And were 100% better 48 hours later, with only a bit of a runny nose to show for your awful cold.

Giving you Tylenol felt like failing on my part. Why can't I keep you healthy? Why did we have to turn to drugs? Why can't I make you better on my own?  And, then, as soon as it was administered and you felt better, I laughed at my own neurosis.  I don't have control.  I never did, I never will. I have to make the best choice in each case and sometimes that's Tylenol.  Duh

Other ways that I have failed my expectations:
  • I did not want you watching TV at all in your first 3 years, and then only very sporadically. Well, you love watching TV with Daddy and he loves watching it with you and you are being exposed to sports and music and language and are happy and healthy.
  •  I couldn't imagine you sleeping in our bed at all, let alone for almost 11 months (and no end in sight). I thought it would be uncomfortable or strange or hard on Daddy and me.  It's actually the greatest thing ever-we all sleep so well and it's so nice for both of us to wake up to your smiling face and your cheerful chatter
  • I thought I'd feel more judgement from the outside world and less sure of myself and my choices. There are moments, to be sure, but they are so far less than I anticipated. We are figuring it out and we don't really care what other people think or say. How freeing!
It has been so long since I updated this blog, so of course there have been more advancements. You pull yourself up more and more these days and let go for a few seconds, testing your balance for standing on your own.  You are very happy to be without me in certain situations: babysitting at the Y (finally you've realized it's a whole room of toys that you don't have at home! And other kids to play with! Awesome!), hanging out with your grandparents (Thanksgiving you played for hours on end, not missing me as I was cooking or chatting with my friends, drinking wine) and anytime you're with Daddy.  I've been teaching more and making more appointments and you're so totally fine with me gone.   You also are quite the adventurer. You love exploring all the places in our apartment, especially the bathroom. You are way more into your toys, spending hours during the day taking them off shelves and playing with them.  You also love being thrown in the air and hanging upside down.

 toy wreckage in your wake 

caught trying to investigate under the bed


We spend a lot of time like this

 scattered blocks in the background, curious Pea coming to investigate the camera

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

What's hard and what isn't

Dear Pea,
I am loathe to admit this. But it's true, and I can't only talk about the good things. You are sick a lot. Not terribly ill, not really sick, but colds and viruses have hard their way with you many many times. It seems to rotate between congestion and belly aches. Most recently, it was both: massive runny nose, stuffed up head, vomiting and diarrhea.  There was one day last week when I thought I was going to have to take you to the ER because you weren't keeping anything down, but it passed.  You refused all food except breast milk and took so much less than usual that I had to pump to relieve my discomfort for three days. You nursed yourself to sleep only to throw up. You got diaper rash from the diarrhea.  You bit your hand while we changed your diapers, needing something in your mouth to soothe the gum pain but too impatient to find a teething toy.  It was awful.I wondered how I could have brought you into this world to suffer so much, and you are not a "succumb to the suffering" kind of person.  Through all of the discomfort, vomiting and congestion, you still laughed and smiled and enjoyed The Muppets.

That was hard.

Every time you're sick, it breaks my heart.  Every time you're sick and you ignore the sickness and still are happy, it shatters my heart.  It is my mom's spirit in you-the refusal to be negative, the beauty in your world enough to overtake the ugly.  I miss my mom so much, every day, every moment.  It's like an enormous void that will always be there, growing larger and larger each day as the things that I can't share with her get more and more numerous.

That is hard.

Since your most recent illness, you have grown in leaps and bounds developmentally. You chatter and repeat words: "cashew" "butt paste" "Obama," in addition to your correct usage of "bye bye" "up!" "Dada" "Mama" and "yum." And "yum" is in response to finally finally eating solid foods.  You LOVE pizza (oy), carrots, cheese, broccoli (that's what gets the most "yum") spinach, olives, lentils, bread, coconut oil, apples, chicken, ground beef and chocolate. Not so into eggs or avocado, but I keep giving them to you when I eat them.

chicken sausage and spinach
This is easy

It's never a mystery when you want to be picked up (both arms in the air, imploring facial expression), when you want to eat (grab the food out of our hands or dive for a breast), when you are tired (head to the floor or couch), when you want to play (crawling at a high speed towards something to pull yourself up on, or to climb over, or to take out of its place) or when you like something (applause!).

pulled up on the window sill, about to pull everything off the sill
creating your own obstacle course over a TV tray
 pulling down all your toys and grocery bags and dancing on your knees
This is easy. This is fun! Communicating with you is truly amazing, you are completely your own person with your own desires and emotions. 

One of my mama friends was talking about her baby and how amazing it is that she "made" him. I know a lot of people feel that way, and it's quite literally true.  But I don't feel like I made you. I feel very detached. I feel like you were always your own person and you came through me. Like I had no control over anything to do with you. You are your own force, your own light. I just get to witness, to try to keep you safe and teach you what I know to be true in the universe. 

That is a privilege. It is awesome in the original meaning of the word. It is easy. It is hard. Much like love.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Your first hurricane!

Dear Pea,
Hurricane Sandy stormed through our life and neighborhood a couple of days ago. It was a crazy storm, flooding lower Manhattan and waterfront Brooklyn as it blew through.

no Baby Boot Camp today!!

We were extremely lucky to have kept our power and water on throughout the storm and to have minimal clean up to do. Daddy's office is in lower Manhattan where the power has been off since the storm and is expected to remain off all week. So, he's working from home all week. You love this 

helping Daddy work from home

The storm lasted a very long time, probably 24 hours that we didn't feel safe being outside and another 20 or so that we were just cautious.  We stayed inside from about 6pm on Sunday night to about 2pm on Tuesday afternoon.  We went a little stir crazy. I ate lots of Halloween candy and Daddy introduced you to The Muppet Show. You now love The Muppet Show. You sat for an hour or more, staring at the TV, while I apologized to you for rotting your not even 10 month old brain with TV.  Oh, well, special circumstances call for special treatment.  And it was a hard few days to be cooped up-you are not feeling your best. You have cut one of your top teeth (top left) and have three more coming in any time, so you are uncomfortable.  Your teeth are coming in atypically, too: the right canine is coming in faster than the right front one; you look like a real life Jack o Lantern.  

Speaking of  Jack o Lanterns, today is Halloween!  Hooray!  Last Sunday, right before the storm hit, we went to a Halloween party with your friends.  It was the cutest thing ever, all you crawling costumed babes wiggling around the floor of a bar.

Just a fraction of the party-goers!

You in all your Godzilla glory

Friday, October 26, 2012

Buh Bye!

Dear Pea,
You said buh bye to Daddy as he was leaving to go to work this morning! So so so so so freaking cute! I was nursing you and you were babbling as usual between "bites" and Daddy kissed you goodbye and said "bye bye!"  You said "Buh!" and so we both said "Bye bye!" again and you looked right at Daddy and said "buh bye!" and then waved.  Made our day, if not week and month.

Okay, probably not month, because there have been other great things, too.  You now play peek a boo with us! You hold a blanket or towel or shirt over your eyes, then dramatically pull it down to see us. If we yell Peek a boo! you do it again and again, laughing as you go.  It's amazing to watch your comprehension of your surroundings so dramatically shift. You know get things.  You are an agent of your body and go where you want to go, when you want to.  You are a speed crawler and are cruising around the couch and coffee table.  You enjoy making obstacle courses out of life and will intentionally climb over a barrier instead of avoiding it.

climbing over my leg to wave at yourself in the camera

You wave now, all the time.  Your arm doesn't bend when you wave, so you either flap your entire arm or you open and close your hand.  You do this when you're greeting someone, when leaving someone, or for emphasis.  You still flirt with people on the street all the time, and now you've added waving into the mix.  I sometimes see people smiling on the sidewalk and haven't noticed that you've been waving and smiling at them first. It's like you've made it your mission to bring a bit of joy to everyone you see and you really do, Sweet Pea.  People leave your presence smiling. It's amazing to watch. It fills me with such joy.

spreading joy! This is you flirting with my friend

Lately I've been trading some childcare with another mama so that she can study and I can go to business meetings.  You and little H are sort of friends-you have similar personalities and sort of compete for the mama's attention.  When I have you, I end up holding both of you a lot, playing in the mirror and getting a double dose of snuggles. It's such a nice way to grow up, I think; these little communities of helping hands.  You get to play and interact with other babies and we mamas get a break once in a while, which also helps us be better mamas!

You both always want the same toy

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


Dear Pea,
You are such a delicious baby these days! Of course, duh,  you've been a baby this whole time, but now we're really in the 'what you think of as a baby' stage: you are crawling but not walking, you babble incessantly but aren't talking, you're tasting food, but not eating meals. You still love to be held/carried/worn and are just at the beginning stages of wanting to do things yourself (eating being the big one). You laugh every day, at being tickled, at being thrown in the air, at having your hair and teeth brushed.  You've also started laughing in reaction to other people, not just your own stimulation.  Basically, when Daddy makes a silly face or funny noise (I'm not nearly as funny, but everyone knows that).

But you're growing more and more aware of your body and it's abilities.  Changing your diaper these days is like wrestling a slippery fish.  Luckily your marathon poops have decreased to once or twice a day, so I'm not constantly wrestling a poopy fish.  But as soon as the diaper comes off, you roll over into crawl position.  Sometimes you pull yourself up to standing, sometimes to sitting, other times you just try to crawl off the table (yikes).  It is very difficult to diaper a moving target.  You find this funny, and, honestly, most of the time I do, too.  I've learned to allocate a lot of time to each diaper change and if we're not rushing out of the house, it's fine. And even if we are rushing, I've learned it's okay to be late. 

You also are less and less inclined to sit still for anything.

 Here I am, trying to take a cute picture of you and your BFF and you're not interested.

And here you're hosting a cocktail party. 

That's okay, Sweet Pea. I love that you'd rather you explore all of your surroundings and play with your friends than sit still. You are already such an adventurer.

Monday, October 15, 2012

First Spinning class

Dear Pea,
Since you were 10 weeks old, I've been teaching Spinning classes.  I started teaching early in the morning while you were still asleep and have added more and more.  Sometimes you hang out with Daddy while I teach. Once a week, you got to the YMCA babysitting.  Which you usually enjoy, or at least tolerate.  But not today. You have *four* teeth coming in, almost breaking the surface but not quite. You had a very busy weekend with shortened or missing naps.  You didn't want to go to babysitting when I had to teach.  So, halfway through, you came to class. You wore neon pink headphones to protect your ears. You stared at all of the people pedaling furiously, giving each person the once over.  And then, once you got used to the black light, the fact that sweaty mama was yelling at these people and they wanted her to, and the music, you started cheering them on.  You chattered encouragements and, after class, clapped for them.  It was so sweet.

I eat dried mango after Spinning and a couple of weeks ago you decided to eat some, too. You love it-we both walk home from the gym munching on the tough sweets.  Today, two people (mamas themselves) stopped me on the street to tell me how great dried mango is for teething babies. So, there you go, Sweet Pea, you sure do know what's up!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Finally food!

Dear Pea,
Finally, in the past week, you are eating solid food.  Two, sometimes three meals a day. Carrots, yogurt, broccoli (still a favorite), avocado, dried mango (big favorite!), cheese...In India, many people are vegetarians.  Some have little choice in the matter, at least at first as that's how their families eat, but some children, though born to meat-eating parents, refuse meat right away and are considered innate veggies and respected as such.  As one of the principles of API states, we strive to feed you with love and respect. And though I strongly believe that a vegetarian diet isn't the optimal one, if you had innately been an herbivore, I would have respected that.  No need to worry.  You love meat.  Chicken especially, but beef is good, too.  Salmon? Yum.  You really aren't into eggs so much, but everything else is full speed ahead.  A few nights ago, I shredded a bunch of leftover chicken for chicken salad for me. I added mayo and spicy dijon mustard and figured I'd give you a taste.  You must have eaten a least a tablespoon, one fingertip full from me at a time.  Delicious.


In conjunction with your new found affinity for solid food, you have started standing up by yourself.  Usually you pull yourself up using a table, chair, wall or your parents legs and then let go, standing wide legged and grinning for a few seconds before plopping down on your tush.  A few times you've stood up from a squat position in the middle of the floor.  Most of the time you applaud for yourself while standing untethered; it's ridiculously cute. Clapping has become another favorite activity and you tend to do it at correct moments.  When you've accomplished some feat of strength or cleverness or when someone else has.  Or, lately on weekends, when someone on the TV scores a touchdown.

clapping while talking to Bobob

And, finally, extreme validation for your parents: you have been a champion of independence. When I take you to any open play space, you immediately crawl away from me towards the middle of the room. You will happily chew on a ball and watch the other kids and adults without so much as a second glance in my direction.  In music class, while all the other babies stay close to their parents, you cross the room to the good stuff: the lovely singer and her guitar.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Dear Pea,
You are a wicked flirt. We knew this, it's been clear since you became aware of other people.  But today's behavior really brought it home: you and I went to Yizkor services with friends from our childbirth class: the mama, daddy and your little buddy.  You were quite taken with your bud's daddy.  Seriously.  At first, every time he would look at you, you would nestle into my chest and flash him a smile.  You'd look away, then look back, smile and snuggle me. Okay, cute, then we all went about our praying business. But you weren't that interested in praying, you were interested in him. So you tapped his shoulder to get his attention. He'd look at you, you'd do the flirt smile nuzzle routine and then hit him again when he looked back at his siddur. I had to take you out of the sanctuary to let him enjoy the service.

A few weeks ago you were sick.  So sick that I called the doctor in tears three days in a row. By the third day, Monday, we went to the doctor and got a prescription.  You had been miserable for three days, rallying when necessary, but so upset when we changed your diaper or looked at the diaper rash.  When we left the doctor's office, you were in a rage-you had just been examined, you were tired and you were sick.  But as soon as we got to the pharmacy, you smiled up at that pharmacist and were in great spirits. Between the staff and the men in line behind us, you were suddenly feeling much better.

You like men, sweet pea.  Men in their twenties, thirties, sixties, you don't care.  You will smile at any man who smiles at you.  Women, meh, once in a while.  Of the three flight attendants on our flight home, you were gaga for the male.  OY

Here's your flirting smile.  Irresistible and you know it!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Clapping and climbing

Dear Pea,
We just got home from an 8 day trip to visit all of your Seattle family and friends. You again impressed us with your affinity for travel, your easy transition to west coast time and your willingness to fly.  You are a much better traveler than your daddy.

While in Seattle, we went to Rosh Hashana and Shabbat services.  You loved the music, the other kids and the grape juice. We also hosted a Mabon Goddess Circle to celebrate the Equinox.  You enjoyed this, too, though mostly because your big almost 5 year old cousin was there to play with you.  Wow, do you love your cousins.  All of them.  You flap your arms and start squawking when you see them, you smile and flirt with them and you happily crawl after them.  Not that they were ever very far away from you-you tend to be the center of attention at all times. 

Over the long week, you tackled crawling up stairs with no problem.  

You enjoyed a mellow playground where you could sit and watch other kids and we could move to the swings and leave our diaper bag within eye sight but not arms' reach.  

You spent some special time with some special people and even, eventually, got used to riding in the car seat. 

You started clapping and it's now your favorite thing to do.  You clap when you're excited, you clap when you see someone you're happy to see, you clap when we clap...You also started getting a bit more interested in food over the past week and have eaten a slightly larger quantity than before. Maybe two bites of food go in your belly now.  You enjoyed the salmon roe that Uncle Rossy got especially for you, the bright orange eggs and the little salty pop you got in your mouth. 

It was a sad trip, too. It was the one year anniversary of your Spirit Grandma's passing away and we said goodbye to Uncle Rossy for a long time.  Your happy spirit and enjoyment of all the people around you helped lighten the mood a lot. We are all so much in love with you, Sweet Pea. You bring joy to so many people, even strangers on the airplane can't resist your delicious smile and your happy clapping.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Crawling, Cruising and Connecticut

Dear Pea,
You are eight months old!  You are now an adept crawler, not doing any of the weird bear crawls or one legged push offs that so many of your comrades do.  You crawl very civilized, on hands and knees and not too quickly. You have also taken to cruising: you pull yourself up to standing on the coffee table and walk around it, hand to hand and foot to foot.  You like to see what's on the table and taste everything before flinging it to the ground.  Sometimes you will try to hold onto a found treasure and cruise at the same time and get a bit puzzled.  Not frustrated, though-you're so delighted with your new found mobility that nothing about it deters you.  You fall, you run out of table, you get stuck under the matter. Everything is a thrill.

Last weekend we went to visit my grandma's brother in Connecticut.  WOW, did you love the country, city baby!  There were chipmunks and birds and so much was lovely.  Your great great uncle has an adorable house with a stream that he dammed this summer and we floated on the water in a raft.  You kept trying to go swimming, trailing your fingertips along the surface, delighted with the cool water and the water bugs.  We ate all our meals outside and slept to the sound of cicadas and crickets.  And no one got any tick bites! Huge success.

 dining al fresco

 Daddy is making a silly face at you

  You want to go swimming!

Pea PJs! Our favorite!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

SO many milestones!

Dear Pea,
What a week!! You have progressed in leaps and bounds! Today was the day I have been waiting for for so long: you crawled!  Hooray! You were sitting right in the middle of the living room and decided that the iPod charging cord was far too yummy to be far away from your mouth, so you crawled the six or seven paces it took to get it into your mouth.  Success! Delicious!

Yesterday you started pulling yourself up on the coffee table unassisted multiple times in a row.  Instead of using Daddy's hands or my knee to propel you or steady you, you're 100% lats and delts and quads.  Strong girl!

You are chattering up a storm, saying what we've decided is your official first word "UP!" You pull yourself to standing and declare yourself "UP!" You sit on the floor and look up at us and request "UP!" You are in our arms and happily remind us that you are "UP UP UP." Beyond cute.

And lastly, I've noticed a lot more movement in your hands.  We're starting to sign more and your hands are ready for the sign language.  Your fingers tighten into a ball and release, you wiggle your fingers, you wave. As I said, what a week!

AND, along with these developments, you are sick! Such an awful cold! Four nights ago you woke up every 90 minutes, screaming.  It was the worst night we've had since you were born, which made Daddy and I appreciate how great of a sleeper you are normally.  But not since then. It was terrifying because we didn't know what was wrong at first, though it became clear fairly quickly that you were incredibly congested.  So we took a steam together at 2am. And again at 4:30.  You quickly fell back to sleep each time after an upright snuggle or steam or bounce, but Daddy and I lay awake, worrying. The next day, you were stuffed up but in very good spirits. And it has continued to be that way.  Your awake hours are spent cheerful and active, occasionally punctuated by coughing fits or very snotty sneezes.  The coughing fits are scary and I took you to the doctor who listened to your lungs and looked in your ears and said it's just a cold, it will run it's course, keep up the steam and lots of fluids.  So that's what we've been doing.  Four or five steams a day, many many offers of boobie (while singing "milk") and trying to help you nap as much as possible. The past few nights have been tough, but not terrible.  Maybe two or three screaming fits in the night, usually the first one around 9pm, which doesn't even wake us up. And you go back to sleep after a snuggle, a bounce and some milk.  Here's hoping for a speedy recovery and a healthy happy baby.

 not too sick to enjoy some chocolate bar wrapping!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Would you like some cheese with that?

Dear Pea,
You are teething.  You are trying to walk, but don't have the balance. You are trying to crawl, but can't quite get that left leg to cooperate. You are trying to explore your surroundings but your parents keep taking the wires out of your hands and the remote controls out of your mouth.  Life is frustrating! So, you've been whining a lot.  A LOT.  You're happy for a few moments, and then you devolve into whine.  We distract you with a song, a toy, standing you up, sitting you down, a little boob, a little broccoli, the mirror and it all works, for a few minutes.  And then.

We understand.  Really, we do.  You are beginning to understand this big world and know that there are more rooms in the apartment and more people outside our doors and you just want to be a part of it all, already!  And, surprise surprise, you aren't the most patient person in the world.  Just like your parents. We really do understand, Sweet Pea! But we can't help you grow up any faster than we already are and we are so happy with every stage along the way that we wish you could enjoy it too.  Can I teach you to be a Zen baby? I think I would have had to teach myself to be a Zen grown up first...

Anyway, it's not all bad. Not even close.  As frustrating as things are for you, you have realized that things are funnier and brighter, too.  We've had some flies in the apartment (I know, eww) and you think it is hilarious when I swat at them.  We've taken to waving rolled up magazines in the air aimlessly because it tickles you so much.  You enjoy being in the kitchen with me when I cook-measuring cups and spoons are a big hit and you are impressed when I grate lemon zest and make the whole room smell citrusy.  You are becoming slightly more patient when we read books and will often sit and listen to a whole story, or at least play while I read and not knock the book out of my hands.  You love bath time so much that it's become a nightly occurrence. And you have discovered swings. 

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

A long overdue update

Dear Pea,
Wow, I haven't had much opportunity to write-you are keeping everyone on our toes.  Your favorite activity is to pull yourself up to standing, using anything in your path.  The most successful items are my fingers, Daddy's fingers and the coffee table, but that doesn't stop you from trying the big stability ball, the rolling chair, your swing...OY.  Though it has taught us that you are tougher than you appear. You fall down many many more times than you stand up and you are undeterred. Try again. And again. And again. Land on your tush, your side, your matter, you try again.  Without complaint.

You can now maneuver yourself from all fours to sitting and back again. You like to roll from your side into all fours when I'm trying to nurse you to sleep in bed (this is very fun for you!) and you have developed a funny little roll that goes from sitting to rolling to sitting to rolling.  It doesn't get you anywhere very effectively, but you enjoy the ride. If you really want to get somewhere, you pull yourself up using Daddy's hands and then walk to where you want to go.  Double OY!

You're not too sure about the whole food thing.  You enjoy taking bites from my plate once in a while-egg yolks usually don't get spit back out. Peas are a fun game-you try to pick them up but don't have control of your pincher grasp, so they end up on the floor or in your palm, unable to get to your mouth.  You don't mind.  Carrots are your favorite-you always grab one if I'm eating it and I need to keep steaming them for you every day.

 You are ambivalent about yogurt.  One the one hand, it's super fun to smear around the table, your face and getting to hold that spoon is awesome! But on the other hand, it's not your favorite thing to have in your mouth. And your anxiety-ridden mama noticed a bit of a tummy upset after eating it, so we're holding off for a little while. But you sure look cute eating it!

You also have so much language these days! You know Mama and call out to me when you want me.  You call Daddy Abba or Dadda and call my dad Bobob. In the mornings and when Daddy gets home from work you greet us with "hi!"  You also just yell for fun.  AAHHHHHH! And Ah Boo! And Wawawawawa. Often these ramblings are accompanied by emphatic hand banging-you really want to drive home your points.

You laugh every day.  You are ticklish under your arms, at your hips and at your neck. You think it is hilarious when I exercise at home-push ups and burpees in particular send you into hysterics. Last night I held my first dance party with you around (how can I have not done this for so long? It used to be an almost nightly occurrence!) and you thought that was the funniest thing ever.  A little Jason Mraz, a little mama shaking and you were shrieking with laughter. Daddy came home to both of us doubled over in giggles.

Finally, a sweet memory I want to preserve from today: it was raining pretty hard and I needed to go to a meeting, so I put you in the Moby and grabbed the umbrella. You were enthralled with the umbrella and insisted on holding it the entire time we walked.  So, we walked a mile in the rain today, both of us holding the umbrella stem, keeping each other dry.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Nearing the end of your 7th month

Dear Pea,
We are almost at the end of your 7th month.  You are rocking your two bottom teeth and seem to have another one on the way. You push yourself up into plank position and sometimes onto your hands and knees-you are so close to crawling I can see it. 

The past couple of weeks I've been bringing you to the YMCA babysitting.  After a rough start, you now love it there.  They have so many toys to play with!  Sometimes there are a lot of other kids and I've come back to find you at the center of a circle, like a queen holding court, surrounded by toddlers and school aged kids entertaining you.  Other times you're alone with the sweet caregivers-you like this too because they will take you to see the basketball court or the pool. And, oh, the pool!  Well! You went swimming for the first time a week ago-we were lucky enough to be invited to take a class with other little ones.  This was fantastic for me because I learned some fun things to do with you in the water.  You were completely overwhelmed by the pool-you had eyes like saucers and just looked out at everything, not even making eye contact with me.  But the second time we went swimming, you were much more animated.  You splashed in the water, looked at me and the other kids and had a general good time!

getting ready to get in the water

swimming! we went with your BFF and she loved it, too!
The food adventures continue, too.  You finally have a high chair, though you've only been in it a couple of times.  The first time, you happily ate a carrot.  Well, maybe about a third of a carrot.  But you seemed to enjoy it. Then we gave you chicken.  Oh, my! You really like chicken.  We gave you a chicken wing and you would bring it to your mouth, open wide and then grin at us.   This is the first time we've ever gotten a response like that.  So, clearly more chicken is in order! 
But, really though, you will put anything in your mouth.  Chewing on anything and everything you can get your hands on is really the main event.  Including your poor little buddy here. In fairness, he does look delicious


Friday, July 27, 2012

Another tooth!

Dear Pea,
So, it turns out I wasn't wrong after all, and your second tooth has crowned!  Two sharp little protrusions coming up from your bottom gums.  You are so so so so cute

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Mama was wrong (not for the first or last time, either!)

Dear Pea,
It appears that I was very wrong about you being in the throes of teething.  You were very uncomfortable last week, but no new teeth have emerged and you're back to your chipper self.  Very chipper.  Lots of giggles, smiles, scrunched up noses and belly laughs.  You have progressed leaps and bounds in your physical prowess-crawling is imminent.  You can scoot across the floor in record time, moving backwards and side to side.  Changing your direction is no problem, it's just that forward motion that alludes you.  Today you figured out how to push up on your feet and lift your hips, almost in downward dog, but couldn't quite coordinate everything to go forward also.  But soon.

 Getting buff to start crawling.  Sitting up is second nature these days

Last night you figured out how to flip from your back to your belly.  And you don't end up lying flat on your belly-you flip over into crawl position. It delights you to no end!  I was nursing you to sleep and you were fussing and fighting it, but as soon as you flipped, you grinned.  This happened twice before you finally conked out.  Then, at 2:30am, you did it again-Daddy woke up to you tapping his back.  You thought it was great fun to flip over and see what he was up to, but when you realized you couldn't get back to me (and my boob) you weren't so happy.  Luckily, you weren't really in a mood to play and once we got you back on your side facing your food source, you fell right back to sleep.

The eating is still going slowly-you are a huge broccoli fan and have been happy with goat cheese and guacamole, but that's really it.  Fruit isn't your thing.  This weekend we'll be cooking a whole chicken, so you'll get a leg to gnaw on-we'll see how you like that.  In the meantime, here's you loving your broccoli

Who needs a binkie when you've got cruciferae?