Posts Tagged ‘Alexis’

September 29, 2015

Alexis at 10 Months

Dear Alexis,

It’s unreal to me that you’re already at the double digit of months. By the end of this month you will have spent more time in our new home than in the apartment we lived in when we brought you home to from the hospital. Unreal.

10monthbaby
Your hair is starting to get so long

You’re crawling now. You’ve been able to move yourself small distances for a while. When you wanted to get somewhere, you’d flatten out onto your belly and flail your arms and legs with the most excited squeal. But you’d move! Not far, but you’d still move! We used to refer to it as ‘the fish’. Then, last Thursday, you started army crawling small distance. By Sunday you were army crawling where ever you wanted, including to objects you could pull up on. Monday you threw a ball and chased after it!

crawling

Mommy needs to up her ball game now, things around here are about to get more challenging!

You’re also walking with assistance. You take the most dramatic steps, it’s adorable! You’re not cruising yet, but you’re close. You’re starting to shuffle your feet when you’re standing. I predict you’ll be walking right around the time of your first birthday, just like your big sister.

lockpuzzle
Big siter’s Lock Puzzle. The first thing you ever crawled for.

And are you a champion eater! You were doing so well with your purees and yogurts that we decided to start you on table food beyond just cheerios. You haven’t met the table food yet that you will not eat! Food you don’t like, sure, but not food that you won’t eat. (You weren’t a fan of my white sharp cheddar macaroni & cheese, but you didn’t let that stop you from eating it!)

I know I say this every month, but I am having such a hard time accepting how fast time is flying. I still think of you as my itty bitty baby, and now you’re mobile and eating dinner with the rest of us! You also have a few new teeth on the horizon. A corner of tooth #3 is in, and tooth #4 seems like it will soon follow. We’re starting to hear the beginnings of a few words. You wave bye, clap and high five. You are so eager to catch up to your bigger sister and leave babyhood behind you. I just have to buckle up for the ride.

Love Always,
Mommy & Daddy

August 28, 2015

Alexis at Nine Months

Dear Alexis,

Another blink of an eye, and another month has gone by.

ToothWatch2015 has come to it’s first conclusion! Those two front teeth have finally come although way through! They were mostly broken through your gums at the start of the month, and remained that way for quite some time. Then, one morning when you were playing with Nicole she suddenly exclaimed “Baby has teeth!” Sure enough, there is no denying it now. You are amazingly gentle with your new found chompers. You go to town gnawing on your toys, but so far have left fingers alone.

teeth
Showing off those pearly whites.

You’re well on your way to being mobile. You’re scooting backwards small distances, and able to turn around when on your tummy to reach your toys. You love to stand and try and pull yourself up every chance you get. Your favorite climbing instruments are mommy & daddy. The tub is another favorite practice spot. So far you mostly just get your butt off the ground. You can get a leg underneath you and but can only pull yourself all the way up with a little help from mommy and daddy. You’re also a champion at getting up on your hands and knees in a crawl position, you’re just not crawling yet. Soon. Very soon.

You’re gaining more confidence standing at your table. You’ll reach across the table and hold on with just one hand to get your favorite toys. You’ll stand with just one hand on mommy, or daddy as well. Last week Mommy helped you walk by holding your hands. You had such a huge smile on your face. You cannot wait to walk. Sometimes you watch Nicole so intently as she runs around the house. We know you want to join her too.

pincher

You’re now eating Cheerios and Puffs in addition to your purees. Puffs are your favorite. You start the happy dance as soon as we put you down in the high chair. You pinch your fingers together and tap them on the tray to show your desire for solid foods. For the longest time you would get them in your mouth, turn them over and spit them out. It’s only recently that you started chewing on them.

tummytimesmile
Tummy time, smile time

Daddy and I think your favorite person is Nicole. You get so excited when she comes with us to greet you in the morning, or takes a bath with you. The past couple of nights you’ve actually cried when it was time to take you out of the bath and away from Nicole. I suspect as soon as you learn to crawl you will be her shadow.

Love Always,
Mommy & Daddy

July 30, 2015

Alexis at Eight Months

Dear Alexis,

How did we get here so fast? We’re now 2/3rds through your first year. I still can’t believe you’re closer to first birthday than to the day you were born. How are we only four months away from your first birthday party?

two
My goof ball

This month we broke out the activity table. You loved to stand at such an early age, but with the chaos of the move I really hadn’t been giving you much of an opportunity to practice. You were a little timid standing again at first, but once big sister showed you the toys you were hooked. Like the jumperoo, your desire to play usually outlives your ability to do so. You refuse to let go, even when your legs start to wobble with fatigue. Between the activity table and your jumperoo, your little leg muscles are getting quite the work out these days!

standing

After months of being quite content to sit and observe the world around you, you’re ready to start moving. You are moving now, but there seems to be a disconnect between action and intention. I have photographic evidence of you scooting on your butt when you get excited and wave your arms. You seem to know you have moved too, but are not quite sure how. You are most mobile at night. You are also all over the place in your crib. I’ll put you down facing one way and find you facing another in the morning.

Now, when there’s a toy you want that’s just out of reach, you’ll drop down onto your tummy. At first you’d want Daddy or I to help you back up to a sitting position, but you’re getting more and more comfortable staying on your tummy. We’ve even observed your rocking, the precursor to crawling.

jumperoo

Your two bottom teeth are just starting to poke through your gums. It seems like those two teeth have been coming in for months! We had a couple of rough days, but nothing a does of Tylenol before bed couldn’t help you with. I will miss your gummy smile, though you’re pretty cute with teeth too!

Love Always,
Mommy & Daddy

July 21, 2015

Timeline of a Baby Nap

0:00 – Place drowsy, but just barely conscious baby down in the crib. The goal: a two hour nap. The booby prize: a single sleep cycle.

Clock begins.

0:01 – Baby eyes flutter open. Head begins to rise off of mattresses. Hastily grab the nearest binki and insert it into baby mouth. Careful not to jab it in the eye! Baby head drops back down with a thud. Baby eyes are closed.

0:05 – Time to make the get away. Remember to avoid the squeaky floor board.

0:06 – %$&! Stepped on squeaky floor board.

0:16 – Haven’t moved. No sounds from the crib. Slowly arch neck to get a better view. Baby appears motionless. Possibly dead. Better not check. Continue to exit.

0:18 – Shut the door as slowly as humanly possible to avoid making a single sound.

1:00 – Door finally shut. Tip toe down stairs.

1:15 – Time for that bathroom break you’ve been pretending you didn’t need for the past hour. Also food. Definitely food.

Consume anything that can be eaten in it’s current state. Do not open chip bags, pop soda cans, or wrinkle wrappers. Opening the refrigerator door can be risky. Fruit is a good choice. Chocolate is a better choice. Remind self to buy more chocolate.

3:00 – Baby is still asleep. To nap or not to nap? Shower or not to shower? Better wait out the sleep cycle. Check mail.

10:00 – Hear a dull buzzing noise. The neighbor is mowing the lawn. Silently curse neighbor for making noise. The rational part of your brain that realizes it’s perfectly reasonable for someone to mow their own lawn in the middle of the day is too busy thinking about another piece of Chocolate to help you see this.

15:00 – Tummy still grumbling. Time to chance it and make a sandwich.

17:00 – Still no sounds from upstairs. Start daydreaming about napping. Open up laptop, start tinkering on the internet.

45:00 – Suddenly realize you’re past a sleep cycle! Do a little jig on the inside! On the inside! DO NOT MAKE NOISE! Head upstairs to nap yourself.

55:00 – Baby’s awake.

June 26, 2015

Alexis at Seven Months

Dear Alexis,

This month has been our first full month in the new home, and your first month with a room to yourself. When we first moved into the house we had you briefly in Mommy & Daddy’s room again. I was worried the new place would feel too new, and your room too foreign for your to sleep well. Instead, it was mommy and daddy who disturbed your sleep! Every time we stirred you’d lift your head and cry for us to pick you up. Once in your own room you were sleeping through the night again.

sevenmonthsmile

Speaking of your new room, you seem quite pleased with it, especially with the jumperoo. It is your favoritest.thing.ever. You’d jump in it until you’d pass out from exhaustion if Mommy let you. You get so excited when I put you in it.

This month began #ToothWatch2015. We think. We’re still debating whether or not we see tooth buds starting to appear. Sometimes when the light catches your gums just so we think we see actual teeth getting ready to come through. A quick finger check says no, not yet. You are drooling more and chewing on everything, so we think they are not far from now.

gym

This month we tried to switch your binkies. Silly mommy thought you were sucking on 0-6 month soothies. Turns out they’re just 0-3 month. Woopsies. I purchased a whole new set of 3+, but they have not met with your approval. You don’t seem to like how thick and tough they are. We tried giving them too you several times, but you noticed them right away and rejected them each time. I even tried giving one to you as you were drifting off to sleep in my arms, but you woke up and cried. Since they were the same size as your current binkies, and not a choking hazard, I decided not to push it. You can choose which ever pacifier tickles your fancy.

fingerbinky

The funny thing, though, is the newborn soothies are too soft for you. So what do you do? You like to insert your finger into the back of the binky, just likely mommy and daddy did when you were little when you needed a little extra help to fall asleep. It’s the funniest thing. At first your daddy and I swore it couldn’t be intentional, but you do it all the time. You seem to have learned it gives the binky a little more structure as you suck.

You are growing up so fast. I cannot get over how different you look now that just a few weeks ago. Your hair is filling in, and now looks quiet brown now. Your eyes are starting to appear green in certain lighting. I’m pretty sure you will have my eyes, but I will keep my fingers crossed you have your daddy’s vision. Trust me, you don’t want mine.

Love Always,
Mommy & Daddy

May 29, 2015

Alexis at Six Months

Dear Alexis,

I’m beginning to understand why parents have a tendency to baby their youngest. As a parent of one I had free time to read ahead. I was always researching what comes next, what emerging skills to look out and how best to prepare for them. With two I’m lucky if I have time to shower. I’m so used to thinking of you as my little newborn it only occurred to me a few days ago that you should be eating solids soon. In my defense, you also only recently started to show signs that you’re interested in food. I guess you aren’t hitting all your milestones super early!

sixmonthsmiles

We had a bit of a rocky move to the new house. I didn’t time things well which meant a rush hour drive from silicon valley to east bay when both you and your sister were tired and hungry. What should have been a smooth hour drive turned into 120 minutes of slow going. Not that I can blame you for getting a little stir crazy towards the end. Part of the desire for our move was to escape this kind of rush hour traffic! Painful drive aside, both you and your big sister love the new place. You quickly learned the high ceilings made impressive echoes and enjoyed showing off your voice in delightful squeals and screams.

Speaking of voices, you have been using more and more of yours. You’re jabbering a ton. You enjoy talking to mommy, daddy, big sister, even your binky. The latter we discovered one day after you seemed to be having an incredibly long nap. We peeked in on you and saw you having quite the conversation with the binky. You love your binky even more than your sister loved hers.

fasinating

You are also getting more and more into your toys. This month we broke out the rest of the infant toys we had still in storage. You love each and every one of them. You chomp on the nodule atop Chan Poo’s (our nickname for the Vulli’s blue chan pie gnon teether) head, spin the egg in the jumperoo, and bang the monkey and elephant rattles together. You’re an equal opportunist when it comes to toys, and will gladly accept anything we – or your sister – gives you to play with. It keeps us on our toes as your sister loves to fetch both your toys and her toys to share with you. The other day she said while giving you back the taggy blanket you had dropped. “Baby likes toys. Nicole likes toys. Nicole has lots of toys.” You are one lucky little girl!

happybaby

Life here in the suburbs is quieter and more relaxed than what we’ve experienced before. We fall asleep to the sounds of crickets instead of sirens. I’m so excited to be starting this next chapter in our lives.

Love Always,
Mommy & Daddy

May 15, 2015

To the Crib

prenap
The face before the crash

Nicki hated being swaddled, but was quite content to be snug as a bug in the rock n play until almost nine months. Given that Alexis was my little cuddle bug and loved being swaddled all the way through four months, I thought she’d practically live in the rock ‘n play.

That would be a big, fat Nope.

For the past week or so she’s been really struggling at night, thrashing about in the rock ‘n play. She just doesn’t seem to be comfortable in it anymore. Since hitting the four month sleep regression her sleep has gotten steadily worse. She was to the point of waking up every 45-90 minutes for the first couple of hours when she first went to sleep, and then again starting at around 2 am. That, of course, means no sleep for the rest of us.

We were hoping to hold off moving her to the crib until we moved. We worry about the girls being practically on top of each other here in the apartment, and keeping each other awake. If we waited until we moved, we could get all our rocky transitions over with in a single shot, rather than stringing them out over a longer time interval. She’d move out of rock n play from the master bedroom at our apartment to a room of her own and her crib in the new house, all at once. At least that was our thinking. Even though we were only a week away from our planned move Alexis (and by transitivity us) was sleeping so little it just seemed like something that couldn’t wait.

So off to the crib she went.

I went with her. The crib was in the office, and I slept on the couch next to her. I wanted to be able to respond quickly, and sooth her back to sleep before she woke big sister.

As expected her first night was rocky. She woke up almost as frequently as she’s been waking up. Last night? So much better. She slept most of the way through the night. No more thrashing. No more frequent wakings. And equally as important, less waking each other up than we feared.

Hopefully this means better sleep for everyone.

April 30, 2015

Alexis at Five Months

Dear Alexis,

You, little miss, are quite determined to leave babyhood behind you. Last month it was standing with support. This month? Sitting unassisted. You started attempting to sit independently at around the four month mark. I remember trying to take a monthly photo of you in the rocking chair for your scrap book and you kept leaning forward, to the point of almost falling over. You refused to use the seatback for support. Since then your sitting has improved so much that they let you sit without being spotted by a boppy cushion at daycare. And I thought Nicole was an early sitter.

sitting

Sitting is just about the only milestone I don’t mind coming so early. Like your sister, you are much happier surveying the land at daycare. You hate being on your back or tummy when there are interesting things going on. Sitting makes your days much more enjoyable. Just remember, mommy is still expecting you to stay a little baby for a little while longer. Pretty please?

playing

This month you started really laughing deep belly laughs. Mommy is even capable of getting some of those belly laughs (although Grandma always has the magic touch.) You love it when I pretend to nibble on your neck. You’re also enjoying your toys immensely, and are getting quite good at getting things into your mouth. We have to be extra careful these days since Nicole loves sharing her toys with you. She knows the way to your heart!

babyblues
Love these baby blues

I know your personality will likely go through many evolutions, bit right now mommy thinks you will take after your daddy. You are incredibly easy going and adjusted to daycare incredibly quickly. This personality trait will serve you (and us!) well as there are big changes a comin’.

Love Always,
Mommy and Daddy

April 7, 2015

Back to Work

Tomorrow I return to work after a very generous, very long maternity leave. I should be ready.

I have had an easier time recovering from delivery this pregnancy than from my first time around. I felt like my normal self, physically anyway, within a few days. The first time around I took longer to heal. I was still feeling the after affects of giving birth ten weeks later, when what semblance I had of maternity leave as a grad student was over.

You would think I would be ready. I most definitely am not.

I could not even work up the courage to do a daycare trial run, where I drop her off at daycare while still on maternity leave for just a few hours to ease her into it. I wanted to soak up every possible moment of baby time. With Nicole I was able to stay home part time and have just mommy-Nicole time. I feel extraordinarily guilty that Alexis will not get that time, despite having a much longer initial maternity leave.

I thought daycare would be easier the second time around. It is most definitly not.

I am getting misty eyed just thinking about handing my baby over to someone else to care for during the day. Rationally I know I’m being crazy. Daycare has been a boon for us. Even at a young age Nicole got a tremendous amount out of daycare, and I know Alexis will to. This is a good thing. But I am not ready.

I think the resistance I’m feeling stems from the fact that there is a good chance Alexis will be our last. Where transitioning to the next phase. It’s one step closer to end of babyhood. I’m not ready. I haven’t even gotten enough of my newborn fix. I feel like I forgot to take in the newborn smell. I’m also not quite where I want to be in terms of crib sleep, or even establishing nursing, and I worry that we’ll lose all the wonderful progress we’ve made.

I blame hormones. I can still use that as an excuse, right? Until they’re eighteen?

March 28, 2015

Alexis at Four months

Dear Alexis,

Your daddy and I have a running joke that I didn’t give birth to a newborn, I gave birth to a three month old. You were smiling at just a few days old. You had excellent head control, and were giggling way earlier than one might expect. But your most astonishing feat? Supported standing. At three months old.

alexis standing

Whenever we go to put you down on the changing pad, or sit you in the high chair, you lock your knees and refuse to bend your legs. Daddy refers to it as ‘deploying your landing gear.’ I suspect you’ll be a cruiser before a crawler. Of course since you’re still only three months old, it’s anyone’s guess. You still need Mom or Dad to prop you up, and we’re never more than a few inches away. Our spare hand is always behind you just out of frame. But boy do you love your new found independence.

alexisfourmonths

You’re getting better at grabbing. You have managed to get your toes a couple of times, and the toys that dangle from your activity gym. We started putting you in your high chair in an effort to return to family meals. You dine on toys (when you manage to get them into your mouth) of course. You love the new vantage point. Like your sister you are completely fascinated with the world around you, and love having a seat at the table.

alexislaugh

My maternity leave is rapidly approaching it’s end. I thought it would be easier to return to work this time. Alas, it is never ease to leave your child in the care of another for the first time. I will miss our days together, just as I missed them with Nicole when she was your age. I know we like to joke that I gave birth to a three month old, but do me a favor and remain a tiny baby as long as possible, mmm kay?

Love always,
Mommy and Daddy

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