Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The things we do for our kids...

This morning was an interesting one in our household. It started off ordinarily enough: I woke Emily up in the morning (after she slept 12 hours!), gave her some breakfast and then set her down in the living room to play with some toys while I went to the bathroom. I made sure to close the door tightly and latch it because Emily has taken to pushing that door open when one of her parents is trying to have two minutes peace. Sure enough, I soon heard her pawing at the door and when I went to open it and rescue her, I could not. No matter how hard I tried or how many times I wiggled the door knob, I could not get the door to open. I was stuck in the bathroom and my daughter was quickly losing her cool on the other side of the door.

I considered the facts: it had to be approaching 8 o'clock and Eric should be coming home soon, so I kept fiddling with the door knob when suddenly I panicked. Had I closed the door to the basement steps? Was Emily's 15 seconds of silence because she had fallen? Swallowed something she shouldn't have? Learned to walk, open doors, and was now running out in the middle of a street as a speeding truck approached? I knew I couldn't wait any longer. What if Eric went out to breakfast with his night shift cronies as he has mentioned to me that he might do one of these times? So, I searched the bathroom for a blunt object, settled on a plunger and began beating through the door. My plan was to make a small hole, reach my hand through and try to open the door from the other side. I made the hole all right, but it still wouldn't budge, so I kept going. Soon enough (after a LOT of pounding and wood chips flying) I had created a hole I could fit through (with some considerable squeezing). I rescued my sobbing baby, surveyed the damage, and not two minutes after I was freed Eric walked through the door to quite a scene!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

We are family!

Having my side of the family visit from Pennsylvania is always a treat. My mom absolutely adores Emily, and the feeling seems to be mutual. My sister, Elsa, also enjoys every moment that she gets to spend with her favorite (okay, and only) niece. I love it when they visit because living so far away has gotten exponentially harder for me now that Eric and I are building a family of our own. We wish that we could be closer to both sets of our parents, and are hopeful that one day circumstances will allow us to do so. Meanwhile, we'll travel east as much as we can and welcome our families to come and visit whenever they can (hint, hint). Here are some of my favorite pictures from their recent visit!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Happy, Happy, and More Happy


I thought I'd write you a quick note before you get the idea that your mother is the only one writing to you (after all, let's not forget who started this here blog).

Today you have been extremely happy.  Not only did you go down for your morning nap without so much as a single peep (nearly unprecedented behavior), but upon waking, you discovered that most everything you encountered in your little world is cause for either smiling or giggling.  To wit:

  • oatmeal with applesauce

  • your Momma

  • making really high pitched sounds of different kinds

  • keys

  • the couch (I'm not sure why)

  • Oscar

  • yours truly (that one I understand)

  • yours truly doing push-ups

  • peek-a-boo (you always like that though)

  • those same toys that you spurned only yesterday

I attribute a good part of this to good napping (something your mother and I have been trying to tell you since day one).  I am glad to see that you enjoy life so much, and I hope this is the start of a trend.  I certainly think you're going to be a happy and fun little girl as you grow up.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Praise Be to God!

Many of you know about my struggles trying to balance being a good mom with wanting to continue to work part-time outside the home.  It's been a trying process, frustrating at times, and occasionally it seemed hopeless that anything would work out (especially with Michigan's economy these days).  But, I'm so profoundly happy to report that God is faithful, and He's answered my prayer in a way that I didn't see coming.  I interviewed this past week for a part-time position as a payroll coordinator at Calvin Theological Seminary and it went well, but God had slightly different plans in store for me.  The end result is that I will be working in the Admissions Office at the Seminary on a part-time basis and starting the week after next.  It's a position that I'm really excited about and I'm glad that God opened this particular door.  Praise Be to God for His faithfulness to me and our family!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Like Mother, Like Daughter

When I was about Emily's age, my mom introduced me to my baby blanket. It was a gift from someone (my mom doesn't remember who) and I have had this blanket for 27 years. It still comes out to comfort me on rare occasion, and my younger sister (who is a junior in college) has an identical one that she still sleeps with every night. I've tried introducing Emily to a few stuffed animals in the hope that one of them will spark her interest, help her sleep better, and serve as her very own "comfort object". But, until recently, nothing worked. Then one night, as I was feeding Emily right before her bedtime, I covered her with a blanket just like the one I have. She held on tight, and I let her sleep with the blanket that night. Ever since then, I have put the blanket on my shoulder as I rock her for a few minutes before naptimes and she will put her head on my shoulder VOLUNTARILY! This in and of itself gives me cause for great celebration, but the blanket has even more super powers. Apparently it can also help Emily fall back to sleep after she wakes up early from a nap, as she has done twice in the last week or so. She cries, reaches for the blanket, and after a few minutes is sleeping again. This may not seem like much, but to me, it is nothing short of a MIRACLE. And so, as my sister said, "Emily is officially part of the family". Below are pictures from this morning: how I found Emily in her crib when I went in to wake her up and on the floor right before she ate breakfast.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Nine Months Old!


You are nine months old today, and you keep going full steam ahead!  I frequently tell people that you have two states of being: incredibly energetic and asleep.  I don't know how you do it.  Sometimes I'm ready for a nap in the morning before you are just from chasing you around.  Do you think maybe you could take it easy for a little while?  But then again, your boundless energy (and we're not talking about energy in the way that all kids have energy - you put all the other babies I've ever watched to shame) is part of what makes you well, you, and I would not change you for the world.

You love to explore, and will take off to other rooms of the house all by yourself (though you do seem to want me to follow and whining ensues when I don't).  In fact, you love to be chased, and will try to outcrawl me all the time.  You also find real humor in peek-a-boo and that's handy for diaper changes (which you hate).  You have also developed a real knack for finding things to put in your mouth that shouldn't be there.  Here is a list of things your father and I have had to fish out of your mouth just in the past week:

a) paper

b) cat food

c) rubber band

And, those were only the things I could identify.  I mean, your dad and I aren't exactly neat freaks, but I vacumm - I do! often! - and you still manage to pick up all sorts of things I missed.

You are eating more and more real foods, including bananas, cantaloupe, crackers, cheerios (oh my goodness do you love cheerios!), broccoli, oatmeal, and yogurt.  This is fun, but it's also messy and you don't seem to enjoy being cleaned off after meals.  Just so you know, I'm not trying to cause you any angst or consternation while I wipe your face and hands.  I'm only trying to protect the furniture!

You've learned to wave this month, and it's pretty cute.  The other day I put you in your high chair for breakfast, set some of your beloved cheerios in front of you and watched you begin talking and waving TO YOUR CHEERIOS!  Not your mother.  No, your head was definitely directed downwards as you chatted up your breakfast.  You are also "cruising" now, and walking along pieces of furniture.  I suppose that means that walking can't be too far behind, but I'm not quite ready for that level of mobility yet so take your time.

You are becoming so much fun, and your dad and I love spending time with you.  Napping continues to be a struggle, as you are seriously trying to drop down to one nap a day sometimes.  I try to reason with you - tell you that all the baby books say that you will be taking two naps until you turn one (at least!) but you'll have none of that and continue to remind me that you are unique and you'll do as you please.

It's hard to believe how big you are getting and watch you ever so slowly turn from a baby - my little, precious baby - into a girl, but there's no denying it.  You are growing every day and I can't wait to keep watching as you do.

I love you, peanut!