Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I want Mickey

Last night Baby woke up in the middle of the night.  This is not uncommon.  She started crying out, "I want Mommy! I want Mommy!"  Also, not uncommon.  She just likes to pull on my heartstrings, that one does. 

I ignored her and hoped she would fall back to sleep.  Sometimes this method is successful, some times not.  Most often not, actually, but that's a different story. 

Well, she was so tired, yet so determined to keep yelling, that her cries started to change.  First "Mommy" morphed into "Meemee."  She yelled "I want Meemee!" a few times.  Then she seemed to listen to herself and knew that didn't make sense.  So she changed it. 

I laughed to myself as she cried out, "I want Mickey! I want Mickey!" 

Then she fell back asleep.  Perhaps to dream of Mickey? 

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

"Matt"

One of Baby's uncles, my brother Matt, rides motorcycles.  Baby is well aware of this and has seen him pull up or ride away on his motorcycle.  Thus, she has come to associate motorcycles with Matt. 

Whenever she sees a motorcycle, she will point to it and yell out, "Matt!"  We tell her yes, a motorcycle just like Uncle Matt rides.  I'm not sure if she thinks that every motorcyclist out there is my brother, or if she is actually making the comparison between them. 

She's very observant, and has noticed that although bicycles do not make the same noise, they also have two wheels.  Thus, whenever she sees a bicycle now, she will also yell out, "Matt!"

I don't think she's noticed skateboards yet...

 

Sunday, December 4, 2011

I Want That!

I was sitting on the couch, cuddling with Baby when she says to me, "Mommy, I want bebe."

I replied, "You want your Baby?"

"No, I want Bebe."

"Your Baby doll?"

"No! Bebe."

"I don't understand what you want."

Baby sits up in my lap, points to the blanket that's behind me on the couch, "I want that!"

Oooohh, you want the blankie! Silly Mommy.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Waiting it Out

It was Baby's first full day back at daycare and Mommy's first day back at work after a week of vacation.  Baby had a great day at daycare.  She was dropped off just fine and when Mommy went to pick her up she wanted to stay and play.

I finally convinced her to come home with me (saying "Bye" and walking out the door doesn't work with her.  She'll say "Bye" and keep right on playing) and I could tell Baby was getting tired.

We got home, had dinner, and I started Baby's bath.  The moment the bathwater started running, Baby started running.  No way did she want to go anywhere near the bath tub.  She started screaming and crying before I even chased her down.  We'd skipped baths for a few days and I didn't want to let her go another day without one.  This was a battle I would have to fight.

I picked up Baby, a magazine, and locked her in the bathroom with me.  I got her naked and set her down outside of the tub.  She was screaming and crying at this point in time because she didn't want to take her bath.  I sat by the bathtub and attempted to read my magazine and ignore her.  I didn't want to force her into the bath because then I would have to physically hold her down and rinse her off while she screams and tries with all her little might to climb out of the tub.  I've done that before and it's not fun.  This time I thought we could have a battle of wills.  I was determined to win. 

I sat by the tub while Baby ran to the door.  She clawed at the doorknob trying to get it to turn (one of these days she'll figure it out and then I'll really be in trouble).  She was pretty hysterical.  Snot was running down her nose, saliva was dripping from her lips, and tears were forming tracks down her cheeks.  When she took a breath, I told her that she should let me know when she was ready to take her bath.  She didn't like that.  She started screaming louder.

I attempted to ignore her and read my magazine.  I wish I had brought my phone in there with us to track the time.  I have no idea how long she just stood at the door screaming.  My plan was to wait her out.   

Eventually I finished most of the magazine and decided to start playing with her bath toys in hopes to entice her to come to the bath.  That trick worked.  She came over to me and sat in my lap.  She stopped screaming and I wiped her snot/saliva/tears all clean.  I asked her if she was ready for her bath and she said no.

I played with her toys some more and she stood up and started to reach for them.  I told her she could have them if she got in the tub.  She was hesitant, but then said okay.  I helped her climb in and she got her toy.  Immediately she wanted out.

This is where I think I made my mistake.

I didn't let her out.

Commence the crying, screaming, snot cacophony.  Add squirming, twisting, climbing and grabbing.  Now get it wet.  And turn up the volume.

As quickly as I could I washed her off.  I attempted to reason with her and tell her if she wanted out she had to stop crying (I was still trying to win this one).  She calmed down a little bit, and I went with it.  I pulled her out and dried her off.

Then I tried to put on her diaper.  This battle she won.  Do you know how hard it is to hold down a child on the changing table who does not want her diaper on?  It's tougher than you think.  My child is strong.  And determined.

Anyway, I just wrapped her crying self into her towel and rocked and held her.

She fell asleep in my arms and I changed her then and put her to bed.

I'm not really sure who won tonight's bath battle.  Any ideas?

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lost and Found

Lost my child in Kohl's. 


Lost my purse at In N Out. 


Both were safely returned. 


Mommy would like a vacation.  Perhaps on the beach somewhere. 


Alone. 

Sunday, November 27, 2011

In the Target Parking Lot

I think my child is maturing a little too quickly.  She thinks she is already two.  We still have a few months to go.  Don't grow up too fast.

Baby and I went shopping at Target not too long ago.  We like shopping.  She rides in the cart and points at things.  I make sure she is strapped in or she lunges for things.  This shopping experience was typical.  We got what we needed, paid for it, and headed to the car.


I go to put Baby in her carseat and she starts to scream.  I quickly pull her out because I have no idea why she is screaming.  I check her over and make sure she is not harmed.  She stops screaming when I pull her out.


I go to put her back in and she starts screaming again and arching her back (this is a very effective tactic for not letting Mommy strap you in).  I pull her out again, certain that something in her carseat is poking or hurting her.  I check her over, check it over, and can find no reason for the screaming.


I go to put her back in and once again she starts screaming at the top of her little lungs and arching her back.  I am pretty sure nothing is wrong and try to push her in her seat.  She starts squirming, pushing her feet on the chair and fighting me with all her might, all the while screaming, screaming, screaming.


Worried that someone is going to accuse me of kidnapping my own child and forcing her into my car, I crawl into the backseat of my little compact and close the door.  My child's screams are intensified on the inside of the car, but at lease the entire parking lot can't hear her anymore.  I hope.


I wasn't aware, but apparently Baby has been practicing with Houdini in the art of escape tactics.  I try to push her down into her seat and she consistently wiggles out of my grasp.  At one point, I just put her down on the floor in front of the backseat because my back was hurting trying to get her to stay still so I could strap her down.  She then proceeded to climb up onto the center console in between the two front seats, look back at me, and grin a nice toothy grin accompanied by a mocking eye.


This was war.


I grabbed her and shoved her into her seat as quickly and skillfully as I could.  Her screaming, me trying to be forceful but not hurt her.  In the end, I succeeded (Mommy- 1, Baby- 0), but boy did she let me know she was not happy the whole ride home (Note: turning up music does not help.  As the volume increases, so does she).


After we arrived home I took her out and did notice a scratch on her arm where I had grabbed her to try and force her into her carseat.

I told Husband about her incident and told him I thought she was starting the tantrum stage.  Husband told me she'd never reacted that way for him before.  


I tried to stay home and coerce Husband into taking her places the next few times we went places.  It was slightly validating when she did the same thing for him the next morning when he had to take her to daycare.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

This year's Thanksgiving was great, especially when compared to last year.

Last year was a nightmare.  My clingy baby wouldn't let anyone else hold her, I set off the smoke alarm, and was not happy with Husband who was totally clueless.  Don't worry,  I made sure we were on the same page this year.

This year we had less people over, but I don't think that really made a difference.  What made the difference was that Baby has matured into a little person with a very unique, silly personality.  She loves to entertain people and show off her toys.  She wants to read with you, play puzzles with you, and bring you to different places in the house (remember her taking me by the hand? She does this to everyone now).

She is also into eating what everyone else is eating.  This Thanksgiving I had chips and salsa out before dinner.  The chips were the lime flavored ones.  The salsa was only mild.  Baby saw everyone munching on those and wanted one.  We gave her one and she was hooked.  Apparently lime flavor is a favorite of hers.  She saw people dipping and wanted in on that as well.  We let her "dip, dip" into the salsa with her chips.

We also had a veggie tray with carrots, olives, and pickles.  Baby decided she had to try all of that as well.  However, she wasn't too thrilled with those and went back to her lime flavored tortilla chips and her "dip, dip."

When it was time to sit down for dinner (only an hour late this year.  I'm getting better),  Baby did not want any part of her feast.  I guess she had too many lime chips.  Instead of sitting, we let her run around the living room and play (one of the reasons I love having holidays at our house.  It's already Baby proofed so Baby can wander while the adults sit).

In summary, my Thanksgiving feast consisted of Turkey, mashed potatoes, candied yams, corn, rolls, salad, green bean casserole, ham, etc.

Baby's Thanksgiving feast consisted of lime-flavored tortilla chips and "dip-dip."  

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Halloween

We had the hardest time figuring out a costume for Baby this year. 

Wait, that's a lie. 

I had the hardest time finding a costume for Baby.  I wanted to be super creative and adorable all at once.  However, I didn't have the time, the resources, and I was also lacking the creativity bug.  Thus, when Husband called me from the store one day and told me he found Baby a cute little Cinderella dress, I said to go for it. 

Now all we needed were the shoes, tights, and tiara. 

Accessories are so difficult.  Husband found a matching tiara and ordered it online.  I grabbed a pair of tights at Target (after I spent about ten minutes comparing sizes) and a pair of cute little white shoes (after I spent about twenty minutes making Baby try different pairs multiple times.  I finally settle on a pair that were a little too big, but she will grow into them and they didn't fall off when she walked). 

We hung her dress up in her room and referred to it as her "Princess Dress." She tried it on a few times and wandered around the house in it.  We were very excited to take her out trick or treating around the neighborhood. 

The day before Halloween, Baby's tiara still hadn't come in the mail.  Luckily Target had tiaras in the dollar aisle.  (The Disney tiara eventually arrived two days after Halloween).   

Halloween finally arrived.  I rushed out of work to go pick up Baby and Husband got off early.  We came home and started getting ready to go out.  Husband was a guide from the Jungle Cruise Disney ride, and I was a black cat (one of these days we'll actually do a group costume where the whole family fits together.  If that creativity bug bites, that is). 

Husband started to get Baby dressed in her Princess Dress and she freaked out when he tried to put her tights on (which I forgot to mention were waaaay too big when I finally opened them and had to go back to the store for a smaller size).  We decided to forego the tights.  It was a pretty warm night anyway. 

Then he tried to put her dress on. 

She started screaming at the top of her lungs, fighting with him, kicking, pushing, tears streaming down her little, angry face.  He brought her out to me; she was tearing at the dress with all her might, actually starting to rip it.  We thought maybe we'd better take it off and calm her down. 

We tried to reason with her to put on her Princess Dress.  She wasn't seeing any reason. 

We tried to bribe her with the temptation of going outside.  Still no luck. 

We tried to tempt her with her favorite activity, going for a walk.  She still refused. 

Husband was starting to get discouraged.  After all the anticipation and excitement, we might not be able to go trick or treating because our child didn't want to wear her Princess Dress. 

Finally we pulled out the big guns.  We bribed her with candy.  Here's how it went. 

Me:  Baby, do you want some candy?

Baby:  Yeah!

Me:  Then you have to wear your Princess Dress.

Baby:  No!

Me:  If you want some candy, you have to wear your Princess Dress. 

We held up our bowl of candy. 

Me:  Do you want a piece?  You have to wear your Princess Dress.  Will you wear your Princess Dress? 

Baby, while rummaging through the candy bowl: Yeah. 

She picked out a tootsie pop while we put her dress on. 

Me:  Now you have to wear your Princess Dress.  You can't take it off. 

Baby, holding out the Tootsie Pop to me:  OooP  (that means open). 

*Side Note:  How in the world does my child know that Tootsie Pops need to be opened?? 

In all of our Halloween pictures, Baby is walking around in her Princess Dress, clutching her Tootsie Pop.  

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

No M&M Needed

Baby peed in the potty all by herself!  No bribing, no cajoling, no wait time.  Just sit, pee, and done.  It was amazing. 

Here's the story. 

I had been cooking in the kitchen and was letting Baby play in the sink.  Yes, she was literally in the sink playing with dishes and water.  It's one of her new favorite pastimes and keeps her occupied for a really long time so I can cook and clean the kitchen.  I turn the faucet on a steady dribble and strip her down to just a diaper or naked.  Sometimes she'll sit on the edge of the sink and stick her toes in the stream of water.  Or she'll ask for a bowl, fill it up, and pour it back out.  Who needs toys when you have a sink? 

Anyway. 

I had been letting her play naked in the sink before bath time.  (Yes, I realize this seems a bit redundant.  But it's like the difference between swimming in a pool and taking a shower.  One is for fun, the other for clean.)  I took her into the bathroom to start filling up the bathtub.  Her potty chair is right near the bathtub.  When I turned the water on she immediately sat on the potty chair and peed.  I don't know if she even realized what she was doing, but it was great!  I made sure to praise her and get really excited.  Then she got her bath. 

I've tried to get her to go again, but no luck.  Granted, she hasn't been playing naked recently either, so that might have something to do with it. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

Her First Chore

Tiger and Buttercup share a food dish and a water dish.  When Baby was younger, we had to hide the dishes or she would crawl toward them and upend the water dish or attempt to eat the cat food.  Now that Baby is older, (20 months!) we have the cat dishes on the floor in a corner of the kitchen.  Baby now knows that Tiger and Buttercup have their own food.

I have a system where I feed the cats when I come home from work.  I pick up their bowl and bring it to the plastic container, full of their cat food, that stays in the pantry.  Then I open the container, use their bowl (it's really a regular kitchen bowl from our dish set, but it works), scoop up the food, and return everything to its proper location. 

Baby has watched me do this countless time.  The last couple of weeks she has been helping.  I will say that Tiger needs more food, and she will go get the food dish and bring it to me.  I'll scoop more food into it, hand it back to her, and using both of her hands and walking as carefully as she can she will return the bowl to its proper place.  Then she will run after Tiger and yell at him ("Tiger! Tiger!") to go eat.  She will also click her tongue together like she has heard me do to get him to come. 

Today Baby took feeding the cats one step further.  I told her Tiger needed more food, so she went and got the food dish.  Then, instead of giving it to me to fill, she pushed me aside and grasped the bowl towards herself.  "You want to do it?"  I asked. "Yeah," she answered.

I opened the food container for her and let her try to scoop up the food.  She had a harder time with this than she thought she would.  She tried a few times, but wasn't really getting anything into the bowl.  Then she changed tactics and started scooping the food with her hands to put into the bowl.  Then she realized how fun it was to play in the cat food and stayed there for a good twenty minutes scooping and dumping cat food.  Tiger, who was waiting expectantly for his food, even tried to poke his head in there to get a few pieces. Baby yelled at him, "Tiger! No!"  Eventually I snuck in there, filled the cat dish, and told her to give it to Tiger.  (Which she did once I bribed her by telling her we could go outside after she fed Tiger.) 

I then realized that by feeding the cats, I've been teaching Baby to do chores.  I can't wait until I can teach her how to cook...

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Bitten

There is another child at daycare who is practically the same size as Baby.  Baby is a few months older, but if you were to measure the to of them, they pretty much match each other. 

Daycare says Baby doesn't really care for this other child, who we'll call C.  C is very easy going and good-natured.  He always smiles at me when I pick Baby up.  Baby, however, is a little more domineering.  Whenever C gets a toy to play with, Baby will rush over and snatch it up.  Or she will scream at him in order to try and intimidate him into letting go (I know, I have a little bully on my hands). 

The other day I picked Baby up and M said, "Tell Mommy what you did today."  Baby proceeded to mumble a few unintelligible words and gestures.  I picked up that she pushed someone. 

This was indeed true.  She pushed C down so hard he smacked his head on the ground and had the hugest bump.  Needless to say, Baby got time out for her actions. 

As her mommy, I felt really bad for C and wouldn't blame C's mom for holding a grudge against Baby now. 

Fast forward to the next day and I go pick up Baby like normal.  Baby has a mark on her arm that M shows me.  Apparently C decided to bite Baby when she wanted one of his toys.  Almost a week later, and the mark is still on her arm.

Guess we're even now.   

 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Conversation with Baby

Driving to meet Husband for dinner, Baby and I drove past a place where we had seen animals before. 

Me:  Do you remember going to see the animals there?

Baby:  Yeah

Me: Do you like animals?

Baby: Yeah

Me:  Do you have a favorite animal?

Baby (after pausing to think):  Yeah

Me:  What's your favorite animals? 

Baby: Hmmmm (Yes, she really did go hmm!)

(insert really long pause here where I thought I had lost her attention but didn't want to interrupt her thinking process)

Baby:  Miaow! 

Me:  A cat?  Your favorite animal is a cat?

Baby:  Miaow! 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

What would you do for an M&M?

Baby would tinkle in the potty.  That's right.  For an M&M, Baby will use the little child's potty chair. 

Here's how the story begins. 

M (daycare) and I have been talking for months now about Baby and potty training.  I have a potty chair at home in our bathroom, and M pulled hers out too.  We both attempted working with Baby to get her to go in the potty, but she just liked to use it as a chair and protested heavily whenever we tried to get her naked to actually do something in it. 

Today M said Baby started saying "ew" over and over.  M investigated and discovered that Baby had done number two in her diaper.  M told her it wouldn't be "ew" if she went in the potty, and asked her if she wanted to sit on the potty chair.  Baby agreed (she responds with "yeah!" or "yep" depending on her mood.  Today was "yeah!")  so M led her to the potty chair, stripped her bottom half, and sat her down.  They read a book together and sent me a picture of Baby "trying." 

I showed up to pick up Baby and they told me I had just missed all the excitement.  Apparently M had told Baby that if she went pee in the potty chair she could have an M&M.  Baby really liked this prospect so she grunted a few times and out came a few drops.  She had to show me when I arrived and honestly  it was about the size of a quarter.  However, Baby did indeed earn her mini M&M.  M and I sang Baby's praises and told her what a good job she had done.   

Now I know the secret to getting Baby to go in the potty.   My  next dilemma; where can I find super tiny potty training pants?  My child is super skinny.  Seriously, just the other day she was comfortably wearing shorts size three to six months. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I've Gotta Go

This story actually happened a while ago, but I think I forgot to write it out.  It's relevant to my supposed timeline of Baby's life, so I figured I better keep it in order.

Baby and I were hanging out at my parent's house when Baby tried to get my attention. She ran to the bathroom door, which was closed, and yelled, "Mama!"  I wasn't quite sure what she was getting at, and just looked at her.  She did it again and banged on the door this time.

I asked her if she needed to go potty and she grinned in that way that she does when I actually understand what she is trying to communicate.  I opened the door to the bathroom and asked her again.  She nodded and tried to climb on the potty. 

I undressed her bottom half and sat her on there instead.  She was so excited to sit on there and hunkered down on the potty.  Then she wanted off.  But she hadn't done anything yet. 

I tried to explain to her that she had to go pee pee in the potty, that she wasn't done.  She hopped back on again, but then immediately wanted off.  She did this a couple of times, all the while with me trying to get her to go on the potty.  Eventually she ran to the door and looked at me with a surprised look in her eyes. 

Then she looked down at the floor.  And peed. 

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Water Baby

Baby likes to play with water.  She will shake out water from her sippy cup onto her hands, then rub it all over herself.

If I give her a water bottle, she will carefully pour a little into her hands to then rub all over herself (she's actually quite talented for being one and a half.  Her precision is amazing.  Do we see a surgeon in the future?). 

When I pick her up in the afternoons (more like evenings with all the trainings and meetings I've had to go to lately), I usually have a half a bottle of water in my car that I've saved for her.  She asks for it, "Bol!" and I comply.  She has figured out how to unscrew the cap on her own (I sometimes have to help, or I leave it half screwed on for her), and will drink a little before starting her game of pouring water on herself.

The other day I inadvertently gave her a water bottle that was about a third full.  Baby had quite a good time pouring it all over herself and her car seat on her way home from daycare.  Her and her seat were soaked when I pulled her out of the car.

Now my car smells like mildew and I'm ignoring it in hopes that the smell just goes away.  It could be nothing, right?  Not her car seat getting yucky at all. Or the floors of my car.  Right?

Friday, October 7, 2011

Chapstick

Baby has figured out how to open a drawer in our bathroom vanity.  In this draw I have some makeup brushes, a few hair barrettes, some necklaces, deoderant,and a couple of sticks of chapstick, among other random items.

I don't use chapstick unless I have chapped lips and really need it.  Otherwise, I tend to collect it in random places, like my car or the bathroom drawer. 

Baby has seen other family members use chapstick, as well as one of the girls who helps at her daycare.  I think they've even shown her how it works.

The other day Baby discovered the chapstick in the drawer.  She was so excited and held it out to me to open.  She says, "OoohP" for "Open."  Then she indicates what she wants me to do and grabs my hand to open the chapstick for her.

I do and tell her it's for her lips.  She purses her lips and proceeds to apply chapstick about thirty million times.  She took off running (child who does not sit still), with the chapstick still held in her hand and pressed to her lips, the lid in the other hand.


Eventually she discovered she could use her finger to poke the actual chapstick part and scoop some out to put on.  Or eat, which is what she started doing. She didn't eat the entire thing, just a few small nibbles. 

I read the label and it doesn't say I need to call poison control.  I think I need to put the chapstick in a new spot, though.  

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

I Want That

Recently we went on a quick trip to Disneyland.  It was a lot of fun and Baby had a great time going on the rides.  She loved "It's a Small World" and "The Little Mermaid."  We went on the "The Little Mermaid" three times!  It was a really good ride and now I need to track down the movie so I can watch it and sing along.  If you go on the ride, you'll be inspired too, I promise. 

We saw lots of little girls dressed up in princess dresses prancing around with their hair and makeup done.  Apparently Disney does this thing now where little girls can be transformed into a princess (for a price, of course).  I got a glimpse of the prices and the cheapest one was way too expensive for this cheapskate.

However, we did find the store where the princessifying happens.  It had walls of dresses, tiaras, gloves, glitter, hair extensions; everything needed to become a princess.  It also had stuffed Minnie dolls dressed in pink princess attire. 

We walked around the store and Baby pointed to the Minnie dolls.  She ignored everything else in the store and let me know that she wanted the Minnie doll.  She pointed, I carried her in the direction she was pointing, and moved in.  She snatched up the Minnie doll so fast and hugged her to her chest.  Then she said, "Mommy," and did the baby sign for outside.  She had clearly made  up her mind that we were going to take Minnie. 

I was so impressed at how decisive she was that I had a conversation with Husband and we decided that we could get it for her.  It wasn't very expensive and we hadn't gotten anything for her anyway. 

We brought her up to the register, but Baby started to scream when we tried to take Minnie from her to scan her.  Husband grabbed another one and explained to the clerk we wanted to pay but Baby wouldn't give hers  up. 

He paid and Baby and I walked out of the store with Baby happily hugging Princess Minnie.  From then on Baby made sure Princess Minnie rode next to her or on her lap in her stroller and was tucked in safe and sound.  

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Baby Stroller

I've been very very blessed in terms of having items given to me for Baby.  I have been overwhelmed by the amount of clothes, toys, gear, etc. that I received during baby showers, holidays, birthdays, and random times in between. 

They say having a child is expensive. 

Honestly, I can count only a handful of things I've bought for Baby, and most of the those items were not out of necessity.  I really think I have saved a ton of money by doing cloth diapers.  I can't imagine running to the store all the time to buy diapers, and those things are expensive!  That adds up after a while. 

In terms of clothes, Baby is set through her second birthday. 

Toys?  That's what birthday and holidays were for.  I'm not one of those parents who goes out and buys their child toys all the time.  Or at all. 

Until now. 

Baby and I went into Target to check out the Halloween costumes that they had (I have no idea what to dress Baby as this year), and we wandered up and down the aisles, just hanging out.  We happened upon the little girl aisle full of baby dolls.  Baby LOVED it.  She got so excited and cried out, "Baby!  Baby!"  We activated the giggling and bouncing baby doll and checked out the sleeping babies. 

Then I noticed the baby doll travel set.  Complete with stroller, diaper bag, and feeding tools, all for the little mommy.  How adorable is that?  It had the cutest little baby doll stroller with pretty pink flowers and a matching diaper bag.  Baby could put her new baby doll in it and push her around.  I had the perfect picture of her as a little mommy in my head.  

Let me backtrack as to why I was so excited here.  Baby loves her baby doll (gift from her Grammy), and likes to make her baby doll do everything she does.  Combine this with the fact that Baby loves to go on walks and has recently decided she would rather push her stroller than ride in it, I came to the conclusion that Baby needed a baby doll stroller. 

At Target. I made the decision to make the purchase.  Me, the one who never purchases frivolous items.  The person who knew that there was a cheaper version at a toy store in the mall the next town over (I'd been doing my research.  Honestly, when was I going to walk in to that mall anytime soon?). 

I came home and assembled the darn thing.  That took a lot of work, too.  Screwdrivers and everything.  After a few misshaps (wheels facing the wrong direction, putting the seat on backwards), the stroller was assembled and ready to go. 

Baby loved it.  She was so excited to push her baby doll around the house and carry the bag down the hallway (all the while holding my hand, of course.  Read the last post for more info there).

I realized after the fact that Baby's own umbrella stroller was cheaper than her baby doll stroller that I purchased from Target.  But it was worth it.   

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Take My Hand

Baby is growing up, but she still needs her mommy.  All. The. Time.  I'm flattered and it's very sweet, but sometimes Mommy just wants to to sit down. 

Baby does not sit still.  Really.  Not unless we are with strangers and she wants to make Mommy jealous by climbing into their laps.  (Seriously, she likes to sit on the laps of other moms during play dates and baby classes).

Her new thing is taking me by the hand and leading me places.  She will take me with her and go from room to room throughout the house.  We will run up and down the hallway, hand in hand.

We will pet Tiger, holding hands.

She will try to use Mommy's hand as if I'm a marionette and bid me to pick up her toys for her, or feed her, or open the refrigerator to get some food.

Even though I complain (in jest), I love it.  It's the sweetest thing to have your child hold her hand out to you, say "Mommy" in her sweet little voice and look at you with imploring eyes.  One cannot resist, and I take her hand. 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

All That and a Bag of Chips

We needed someone to watch Baby a few weeks ago.  I would love to hire a teenage babysitter, but haven't found an affordable one in our neighborhood (seriously, the girl across the street charges ten dollars an hour!  No thank you.).  We needed someone to pick Baby up from daycare, then play with her until myself or my Husband got home from work.  (It was his first day of a new job and he wasn't sure when he would be done, and I had Back to School Night until 8).

We recruited Husband's brother, Uncle M, who lives about an hour away.  Baby loves Uncle M.  He has a ton of energy and can always make her laugh. He loves running around and playing with her, so we hoped she would do okay in his care.  I know he was really nervous about watching her, but we were pretty confident it would be fine.

I left three lists (only three, you should be proud) on the counter of things they could do together, things she could eat, and emergency info).

According to daycare, Baby was super excited when she saw Uncle M coming up the walk.  However, when she realized he didn't have Mommy or Daddy with him, she became a little nervous.  Her lower lip started to quiver, but she didn't cry when he packed her in the carseat.  He said they sang her favorite song the whole ride home (itsy-bitsy spider.  She LOVES it), like he'd seen me do with her. 

Then they got home.  Apparently Mommy and Daddy had left a couple of bags of chips in Baby's range of sight (we don't give her chips).  She saw the Sour Cream and Onion chips and told Uncle M that she wanted those (she can be quite the communicator with her little pointings and "yeah's").  He said he fed her some, and then she wanted more.  And more.  And ate the whole bag.  Uncle M said he didn't want her to cry, so he did what she wanted.  Plus, she acted like she had had them before and seemed to know what she was doing. 

After that they read books and watched the news on the TV where she laughed at the impending hurricane. 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Latest Trick

Baby is a little climber.  She is also innovative, determined, stubborn, opinionated, and the cutest little thing you will ever see.  Yes, I'm a proud Mama.

Baby's latest trick is actually quite the accomplishment.  

We have an island in the center of our kitchen with an attached breakfast bar.  Underneath the breakfast bar are tucked three high barstools.  Baby discovered that she can move the barstools and push them around the kitchen.  They slide quite nicely on the hardwood floor.  (I really hope she isn't scratching up the floor, but so far I haven't noticed any  marks).

Yesterday she noticed that there are wooden bars at different levels on the sides of the barstools.  Can you guess where I am going with this?  Baby figured out how to climb up the barstool and sit on top of it.  She pushes it out from under the breakfast bar into the center of the kitchen.  There she will precariously step up the sides of the stools while gripping the seat part (there are no backs to these, they are just your regular circle barstools), she will get her stomach onto the seat, then carefully get her knees underneath her.  Eventually she will work her legs around until she is sitting on her bottom, swinging her legs.  Right in the middle of the kitchen.  When she's done, she carefully climbs down by reversing the process, then pushes the stool back to where it goes. 

She gives her Mommy and Daddy heart palpitations.

Oh, and today she fell off one of our kitchen chairs, which just happens to be much lower to the ground and has a back.  Go figure.

 

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Moments Like This

Last night was yet another battle for bedtime.  I'm trying a new strategy.  I have a whole list of them, in case you were wondering.  I've done lots of research and consulted many other moms.  I think I probably set up a few bad habits in the early months (I blame jaundice, croup, and all the other illnesses Baby had where the doctors said to constantly nurse her and not let her cry).  Then I never went back and corrected them. 

Where was I?  Oh yes, the newest strategy. 

I read somewhere that if a toddler constantly wakes up and gets out of bed, then a parent should lead the toddler back to bed and lay him or her down to sleep.  Quickly, efficiently, and without a word.  Repeat as necessary and the child should get the idea that she won't receive any extra attention for said behavior. 

Baby doesn't get up out of bed.  She's really good about that.  We put her in her toddler bed and she stays there.  She knows better than to get up and wander around.  Instead, she will sit up and scream and sob her little lungs out.  She knows Mommy and Daddy can't stand this.  We've tried letting her scream it out.  This usually ends in coughing and vomit, frayed nerves for Mommy and Daddy, and an overly exhausted child who will wake up screaming again when she's had her sufficient energy boost of sleep.

The other night I decided to try the say nothing method.  I would hear her start to cry, go into her room, lay her back down, and walk out.  She would lay quietly for about two seconds, then sit up to cry again.  Repeat process about twenty times until she gets the idea that she has to lay down.  Eventually she just lay on her side and sobbed herself to sleep.  (She woke up two hours later, but that's a different story.)

The next night I repeated the process.  She kept popping back up and I kept putting her back down (this does hurt one's back after a while, mind you).  I started just standing right by her door instead of walking back and forth down the hallway so I would be ready for her. She was really trying my patience and I was getting very frustrated with her not going to sleep.  During one of her pop ups, she sat up and didn't start crying.  I was standing right by her door, in the dark, but she could probably make out my presence.  She sat there for what must have been a minute just staring.  Eventually I heard a sweet little voice say, "Mommy?"  I didn't move, and she slowly climbed out of bed, ran to me, and gave me a huge hug.

I knelt down and hugged her there in the dark. For some reason this brought back memories of times when my mother hugged me and made me feel loved.  She was always there for me and had a shoulder for me to cry on whenever I needed it.  I desperately hope Baby and I can have this same relationship.  I cried, there in the dark, holding my child who refuses to fall asleep.  My sweet, sweet, crazy child.   

Then I put her back in her crib where she stayed...for the next couple of hours.         

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Toddler Bed

Baby doesn't sleep through the night.  Never has, and at the rate she's going, probably never will.  I've resigned myself to this fact and adjusted accordingly.

I recently went on a play date over a friend's house.  She has a daughter who is three months older than Baby.  We played in the daughter's room and I couldn't help but notice that her crib had been converted into the toddler bed.  I was amazed and grilled my friend on all the details. 

Here's a synopsis of our game of twenty questions (give or take a few questions):

Q: When did this happen? 
About three months ago. 

Q: Why?
S (her daughter)  had been having a hard time sleeping through the night.  She would go to bed, then wake up screaming and need to be calmed back to sleep.  This was something new.  Normally S would be perfectly fine through the night and had always been a great sleeper. 

Q: How long had she been waking up at night?
About three months and Mommy was a walking nightmare.  Something needed to be done. 

Q: What made you decide to change into a toddler bed? 
Another friend had been in a similar situation and found that changing the crib into a toddler bed solved the problem. 

Q: Doesn't S get up from the bed in the middle of the night?
We have a video monitor, so we can see what she is doing.  She has only gotten up a couple of times in the beginning.  Then Mommy came in and gave her the evil eye and told her to stay in bed.  Since then, we haven't had any problems. 

Q: Wow, I would be afraid of Baby just getting up and running around.
We were afraid of that too, but it didn't happen.  We let S pick out a few of her stuffed animals to take to bed with her, and after that she is happy to stay there. 

Q: So did the toddler bed solve the problem of night wakings?
Yes, you should try it! 

Well, I went home and told Husband about it.  He wasn't too interested.  Then I was talking with another friend at work who also has a February baby a year older than my Baby (she claims February babies are all the same and I'm starting to believe her.  Her son has similar sleeping habits to Baby).  My friend had actually done the toddler bed trick when her son was about the same age as Baby and highly recommended it. 

Now I was starting to take things more seriously. 

I went home and began to fiddle with Baby's crib.  It really didn't seem too hard to convert.  If I just unscrewed here and here.... before I knew it an entire side of Baby's crib had been disconnected.  I probably couldn't reconnect it if my life depended on it, so I made an executive decision to just replace it with the toddler rail (I had to call in the help of family members to do this part), and voila I had a toddler bed. 

Baby loved it.  She figured out how to crawl in and out of it and squealed with delight.  I, on the other hand, felt guilty because I had instituted a major life change on my child without consulting Husband (we really try to work as a team with Baby).  After sulking for a little bit, he got over it. 

Surprisingly, Baby does not get up and run around when she awakens from her toddler bed.  Instead she will just sit there and cry.  Or scream.  I think there was only one night when she kept getting up from the bed after we had laid her down, and then we just kept bringing her back and telling her to go night night.  I think she got the idea because she doesn't get out of the bed.   

Does the new toddler bed solve the problem of her night wakings?  Not in the least. 

Saturday, August 6, 2011

She KNOWS

Baby is an evil genius.  Really.  Every time I plan to do something, she knows.  Let me give you some examples. 

Example one:  I put Baby down for her nap (this is a feat of accomplishment in itself.  She never likes to sleep.) with plans to clean the bathroom.  I put the cleaner in the toilets, spray down the shower, when all of a sudden I hear screams.  Baby is up in her crib, screaming her little lungs out.  Not sleeping as she was when I left her there originally.  So much for a clean bathroom. 

Example two:  Baby gets put down for bed around eight (although eight o'clock seems to be coming later and later every night).  I try to go to bed around ten.  I get myself all ready, snuggle into the covers, start to drift into peaceful sleep, when all of a sudden I hear screams.  She decided to get a really dirty diaper and I need to change her.

Example three:  I'm taking an online class, which requires homework.  I'm a procrastinator by nature, so I save everything up until the last minute. I figure I will type up papers after Baby goes to sleep.  Baby goes to bed, I start typing at the computer,  and I'm sure you can figure out what happens next.  Baby wakes up screaming and refuses to go back to sleep. By the time she finally does, I'm exhausted and too tired to type any coherent papers.

Example four:  The other night around nine pm my sister was looking for someone to go to the movies with her.  Husband said he would be fine with Baby at home (she was sleeping, it was late), so I told my sister I would love to go with her.  Apparently half an hour after I left Baby subconsciously could feel that my presence was elsewhere and woke up screaming.  Husband could not get her to go back to sleep, so I come home after midnight to a Baby who was up playing with an exhausted Husband.  He had planned to go to bed early that night because he had a big day the next day.  Next time Mommy will probably not be able to go out late at night.

I could go on, but do you see why I can't do anything?  Baby KNOWS.   

Friday, August 5, 2011

Kids at the Movies

Husband and I were very fortunate to have the opportunity to go on a date the other night for our eight year anniversary.  I know, right?  We''re getting old.  Eight years is a long time!

We went on our first evening date alone since Baby was born.  I know, that's practically eighteen months!  It's a long time.  We could have hired a sitter and gone out previously, but those people are expensive.  The going rate that we've found is ten dollars an hour.  Hello, that's more than minimum wage!  We already pay for daycare (yes, even through summer to hold our spot), so we can't really justify spending more on a sitter at night.  However, this was a special occasion, so we splurged.

We were going to do dinner and a move, but then we were running late (surprise!), so it ended up being a movie and then dinner.  We went to a rated R movie that had lots of cursing and adult themes.  Quite funny, but definitely an adult movie.

Well, we got into the theater and heard a baby way in the back of the theater.  Okay, a baby.  I know some people take their little ones when they want to go out.  I never did that because Baby has never sat still in her entire life and I don't want to put anyone through that.  People don't want to hear a baby cry during a movie and I don't want to be the person who forces that on other paying movie goers.  Luckily, the baby only cried right before the movie, then we didn't hear another peep.  That was nice.  I would have gone and complained.  I mean, I was on my first date in eighteen months without a child.  No way do I want to hear one during my child free night.

At the end of the movie, the people in the back started to walk out of the theater.  There was the couple with the newborn and....their seven year old daughter (I'm guessing her age here, but she was looked around seven or eight).

Okay, I understand bringing the newborn.  You want to get out, the baby doesn't understand the movie and will most likely fall asleep.  Whatever.  But your child who understands what is going on?  Who is able to repeat things out of the movie?  Who looks up to her parents and wants to copy what they do?  Who understands when people are naked?  Who is learning how to treat others and behave in society?

No way.  It just made me so mad to see that little girl at that movie.  What do her parents tell her?  Do they tell her anything?  Is she just left to process what she saw and heard as acceptable and normal in her life? 

Does anyone else see anything wrong with this picture? 

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Playdate Mix Up

I love playdates with Baby.  I've been on a ton of them this summer.  I seem to be at the age where a lot of my friends have children around the same age as her.  We go to the park, we go over each other's houses, we go to splash parks (have you heard of these?  So cool!  It's a bunch of play equipment with water shooting out of it, or misting out of it.  I've been to two different ones and they are great on hot days.  I want one in my neighborhood!), etc. 

About a week ago I received a text from a friend asking if I wanted to have a playdate with her and her daughter.  We will call this friend Jayne.  I responded yes, we worked out the time and place (my house at ten), and we were set. 

Today I texted my friend Jane to confirm that her and her daughter were coming over for our scheduled play date.  She thought she had forgotten, but confirmed that they would be here.  Jane and I also thought it would be fun to invite our other friend (who we will call Carol) and her son as well. 

Tonight I received a text message from Jayne asking if we were still on for tomorrow.

Wait a second.

 Jayne?   

Not Jane? 

Uh oh. 

I just double booked myself for a playdate with both Jane and Jayne and their daughters!  I know you must be thinking, "Well have them all over, duh!" 

Well I wasn't thinking.  In my head it was two separate events.  Then the question was, what do I do?  If I cancel on Jane, then I have to cancel on Carol as well.  If I cancel on Jayne, I'll be canceling my first commitment. 

Oh, the drama. 

I called Jayne and apologized profusely for being such an airhead.  We agreed that we could probably meet later in the week instead. 

Then I did some thinking.  Why not have everyone over?  (I know, it took me awhile to get to this place.  I'm slow.) 

I contacted Jayne again and told her about the mixup and invited her to come with Jane and Carol and their kids tomorrow.  After all that drama, she declined and said we can just try for later this week.

I totally owe her lunch or something.  

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Swiffer

The other day I had the pantry door open while I was doing who knows what in the kitchen.  Baby saw an opportunity and went to investigate what was inside.  She pulled out our Swiffer and started to sweep the kitchen floor.  She held it properly, too.  Then she realized something was missing, so she went back into the pantry and pulled out the pack of Swiffer thingies that you put on the bottom of it (I don't remember what they are called).

She spent a while trying to figure out how to open it (I wasn't going to show her, I wanted to see what she would do.  Plus, they have chemicals on them and didn't really want her to get that close to the chemicals).  She couldn't figure out how to open it, so she settled for placing it on the floor, hitting it with the bottom of the Swiffer, then walking the Swiffer around the kitchen.

I was so proud.  If my child is exhibiting that kind of behavior, it means she watched and learned it from somewhere, right?  I like to think that she learned it from watching her mommy.  I clean my floors.  Sometimes.   

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Great Maid Debate

Recently I found a coupon for a maid service, so I stuck it on the fridge.  Husband saw it and was instantly aware.

"Why do you need  a maid service?"  he asked. 

"Because our house is a mess."  I responded.  "We both work full time, take care of Baby, and the house is being neglected.  We can keep up with laundry and dishes, but that's about it.  We have layers of dust and dirt.  We need deep cleaning, and I don't have time for that.  Have you seen our bathrooms?  They're disgusting." 

Would you like to know what my thoughtful Husband did?  He put bleach in the toilet bowls.  Then he came back to tell me he cleaned the bathroom.  I (nicely) mentioned that the bathroom also has a sink.  Husband then proceeded to wipe down the sink bowl and pronounced the bathroom clean.  

He tried.  He really did.

In the meantime, I'm holding on to that coupon. 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Opposite Day

(I began this post way back in June and decided I better finish and publish it.  Finally).  

Baby was not herself on this particular day.  I usually go for a walk with her in the mornings, which she loves.  It must be the luxury of having someone push you around while feeding you snacks and drinks.  There is also the possibility of a quick nap if she feels tired.  Lately Baby sees the stroller parked in the kitchen and tries to climb into it while looking at Mommy and begging to go for a walk.  She points to it and goes,"Uh?  Uh?"  Translated, this means, "Mommy I would very much like for you to push me outside in the stroller.  Now."

Well, on this day I asked Baby if she wanted to go for a walk and she shook her head no and said, "Uh, uh."  "Really?"  I asked.  "Uh, uh,"  she said, shaking her head and running away.  I grabbed her and placed her in the stroller where she proceeded to scream, refused to sit, and struggled against me.  Okay, no walk today.

Then at swim lessons, when she normally reaches with all her little might to get out of the pool, she decided she wanted to stay and swim.   She splashed in the water, got into her Superman pose, and had a grand time.  She didn't want me to take her out of the water.  It was a great swim lesson day. 

However, after swim lessons, she went back to her normal self. 

Sick Baby, Continued

Usually when I take a shower Baby plays on the floor of the bathroom, or lately I've been leaving the door open and letting her play in our bedroom.  I can periodically open the shower door to check on her, and I know that our room is pretty well babyproofed. 

The next morning, after Baby seemed to be back to her normal self, I let Baby play in the bedroom while I took a shower.  I came out of the shower to see Baby holding her foot out to me and pointing at it.  Upon closer inspection, it appeared that she had pooped on her foot.  She had diarrhea again and had made nice little footprints all over our bedroom carpet. 

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Sick Baby

It is no fun having a sick baby.  She had been doing so well, too.  I think almost six months without anything major.  Then it hit.

Around 10:30 the other night Baby woke up vomiting.  Massively.  Tons of liquid, chunks, chunks of cheese she had eaten earlier in the day as a snack.  It was gross, to say the least, and it was all over her.  And the bed.  And when I picked her up, me. 

Together we jumped in the shower.  As I cleaned us off, Husband cleaned the bedding.  I hoped it was maybe a one time thing, but oh no.  I held her and rocked her in the living room for the next hour and a half and she ended up throwing up a few more times.  After each time I kept thinking it was over, that we could relax.  But no. 

I didn't want to stay up all night in the rocking chair, so I brought Baby to bed with me.  I covered where we were sleeping with towels and kept a stack right by the bed.  Baby was very consistent in throwing up every half hour to twenty minutes or so.  Then she would go back to sleep.  Just when I got comfortable enough to start to drift off to sleep, she would begin again and I would hold her and pat her back and try to make sure she got it in a towel.  Around five in the morning she started asking for juice, so I gave her a little liquid in hopes that she would keep it down.

Husband stayed home with her the next day and she threw up again in the morning, didn't eat all day, had some fluids when I got home, but then threw them all up again.  I tried to get her to drink pedialyte, but she would take a sip then turn away.  I even got the apple juice flavor, and I know she likes apple juice.  She did drink a little bit of water, though.   Since Husband said she hadn't thrown up all day, I hoped she was getting over it and it was just a twelve hour thing.  Nope, not for my baby girl.

Baby threw up again all over the couch and me and herself.  She went to bed with me again and she only threw up once during the night.  And again the next morning.  Then she slept.  And slept and slept.  I was hoping it was a healing sleep.   

During the day I guess she moved past the vomiting stage and decided to push things through her system instead.  Later in the afternoon she had diarrhea.  At one point, she started leaking through her diaper and it ran down her legs and onto the floor.  I grabbed her and stuck her on a towel until she was done, then threw her in the bathtub to rinse her off.  She was not happy about that. 

She was able to eat a little dinner (applesauce and avocado), and she didn't throw up before bed.  I take that as a good sign.  She is sleeping as I type.  Hopefully tomorrow she will return to normal and I can rid my  house of the lovely smells of vomit and poop.  Yuck! 

Monday, July 4, 2011

Swim Lessons 6-8

Lesson 6:
It rained.  I know, in the middle of June when we'd been having hundred degree weather!  It was cold and rainy, and I really debated going out or not.  But I didn't.  Baby had been up all night coughing the night before, so she ended up taking a nap in the morning.  She woke up and we still could have made it in time, but I really didn't want to be cold.  When Baby is old enough to understand that she makes a commitment to something, I will probably make her go.  Until then, Mommy can be a bad example (C'mon, I hate being cold!).

Lesson 7: 
Today was a little colder out, so the water felt warm getting in, which was really nice.  I bobbed Baby up and down, she fell into her Superman pose, and away we went.  We found the kickboard and paraded up and down the lane.  The instructor (who had looked familiar this whole time and actually went to school with my little brother and lives on the same street as me!), came up behind Baby and kicked her little legs for her.  Baby loved it.  She said, "Wheee, whee!" the whole time.  (I think I started that because I tend to put sound effects to everything.  I love that she copies me!)

Lesson 8:
Our last lesson.  Where did the time go?  The instructor had a basket of toys the babies could play with in the water, so Baby chose to play with a floating boat.  Then she also chose to play with a diving ring.  We paraded up and down the lane, her in her Superman pose, one hand grasping the ring, the other the boat, and her legs trailing behind (she still refuses to kick, so the instructor came up behind her again and moved her legs for her).

At the end of class, a little water park was opened for every kid in the place.  It had shooting water, falling water, a lake of water, all around slides, stairs, etc.  I held Baby and walked into it, but no way would she let me put her down.  We even watched another little girl from her class laughing and splashing in the water, but Baby shook her head no, that she didn't want to join in.  That was okay with me.  That water was colder than the pool.  

Another couple was there with their son (who happens to be two days older than Baby), and they were taking pictures.  I was mentally kicking myself for not remembering to at least take a picture of her with her swimsuit on, or one of her and me.  Remember, I'm not too good at the whole memory book thing.

One thing we did get  was a report card.  Baby's first report card!  I was so excited!  It had all the different techniques we had focused on for the past two weeks, then a rating for each one.  The best rating was Got it.  Then there was Almost.  The last rating was Not Yet.  Husband did the math and was disappointed to see that Baby had about a C average.  He told me I should enroll her in the next class so she can improve.  This brought up the issue of school report cards, what we think about grades, consequences, rewards, etc.  I can tell you that her school years are going to be interesting.  Let's just hope school comes naturally to her because Husband and  I have some very differing ideas on grades.

Anyway, swim lessons were fun and I'm glad we did them.  It was neat to see Baby come in shy, then start to open up (like knowing to get into the Superman pose).  The instructor said Baby was one of the happiest, most compliant babies she had worked with (really, my child?), which I thought was nice of her to say.  I think she was that way because I didn't force her into anything, so therefore we didn't have any screaming fits.
Next year we'll try again.   

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Swim Lessons Numbers 3-5

Lesson 3: 
Today all Baby wanted to do was jump from the ledge into my arms.  We were supposed to work on making arm circles in the water, but no way did she want to do that.  I tried to distract her from the ledge by moving away, bobbing her up and down, and encouraging her to do bubbles.  She did try drinking the water, which was at least a step in the right direction.  She would dip her head in the water and take a big gulp, then look at me and beam, thinking she was doing the correct thing.  I told her good job.

Lesson 4: 
Our last lesson of the week.  Baby finally got the swim position down; legs stretched out behind her, arms stretched in front.  I called it her Superman pose.  The instructor remarked that Baby was starting to feel comfortable in the water.  Yup.  She wasn't stuck to me like glue anymore. 

I think today we were supposed to work on floating, as well as putting together the bubbles, kicking, and arm circles.  Baby got the posing part right.  She attempted to kick a couple of times, but I think she scared herself when the water bobbed around her.  Therefore, we did more ledge jumping.  I'd let her jump into my arms, then wait until she did her Superman pose before I would let her jump again. 

Lesson 5:
There were multiple swim lessons going on at the same time, and each group was separated by the lane lines of the pool.  In the lane next to us were elementary age kids who were learning to swim.  Baby had been watching them closely for the past few days.

Today a kickboard had somehow come loose and was floating innocently in our lane.  Baby reached out for it, so I gave it to her.  She knew she was supposed to hang on, so she did.  It was really cool to see that she had been watching the other kids.  I felt so proud parading her up and down the lane as she held onto her little kickboard.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Swim Lesson Number 2

Baby had a much better day today.  She wasn't as scared of the water, although she still refused to blow bubbles.  Today's focus was on kicking.  Baby did not want me to let go of her and she screamed and shook her head no if I tried to hold her out at arms length.  The instructor said that was fine, and the point was to just let the babies get used to the water, not force them to do anything they don't want to do.

Toward the end of the class the instructor said we could sit the babies up on the side of the pool and let them jump into our arms.  Baby LOVED this.  I would sit her up there, count to three, and she would lean forward and fall into my arms.  We did that for the rest of the lesson, but I was at least excited that she was laughing and squealing.  

Friday, July 1, 2011

Swim Lesson Number 1

(I know, for those of you who know me in real life, this blog post is a few weeks behind.  Oh well, use your imagination and time travel into the past.)

I signed Baby up for swim lessons to give us something to do over the summer and help her get used to water.  It's also an excuse for me to get into a pool since we don't know people whose pool we can frequent.

I was really nervous about starting the lessons.  I'm always self-conscious about what to wear and what to bring.  I ended up buying Baby two new bathing suits and returning one because I wasn't sure what type she should wear.  I had a few cute, girly ones, but I wanted one of those rashguard ones to help protect her skin (it's a water T-shirt with SPF 50).  The cutest one I found didn't have a bottom piece to go with it, so I matched one of her bottoms from another suit with it.  So now her "swimsuit" is a bright pink rashguard with little Hawaiian flowers in the corner and a pair of bright blue bathing suit shorts with large multicolored spots.

Then there was the problem of what I would wear.  I had a cute tank suit that a friend had given me last year.  The only problem was that I tried it on and it was way too big.  Like,  I couldn't even attempt to wear it because it was literally falling off of me (yay for shrinking!).  I pulled out a suit from a couple years ago that had been too tight before I had Baby, and besides a little extra cleavage (thank you, breastfeeding), it fit. 

We showed up a little early to the lesson and I had no idea where to go.  I walked in through the entrance and there was no greeter or lifeguards there to tell me where to go.  I was rather annoyed at the lack of instruction.  I saw quite a few parents waiting around and chanced to overhear a mom tell her son that we were waiting for the lifeguards to come out and call the names of their pupils.  I thanked her for explaining that.

The Parent/Child class was called and they didn't call Baby's name.  I went up and talked to the lady in charge and apparently I had signed up so late I wasn't yet on the list.  However, we still were able to go.

We got in the water and Baby clung to me the whole time.  The lifeguard told us that each day we would work on a new skill.  Today was going to be bobbing (holding the baby at arm's length and bobbing them up and down in the water) and blowing bubbles.  She said that most babies knew how to blow bubbles at this age.

Wait a second, I was supposed to have taught Baby how to blow bubbles by now?  When?  Oh, in the bathtub, of course.  In between the part where she was screaming and when she was climbing out of the tub.  Gotcha.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hugs and Kisses

I'm not sure exactly how it happened, but we taught Baby how to give hugs.  If we tell her, "Go give so and so a hug," she will run over to them with her arms outstretched, then when she gets there she will turn her head and rest it on the person for a second or so.  It's the cutest thing and I love telling her to go give people hugs.  You can tell she likes the attention she gets, too. 

It's fun when we have a bunch of family over and we tell her to go give a specific aunt or uncle a hug.  She has to look around the room, find the person, then go to them.  Sometimes she goes to the wrong person, but we still cheer for her.  A hug is a hug.   

Husband has also been teaching Baby to give kisses.  You know, close your lips and give a little peck.  She's figured it out for the most part, although hers are a little slobbery with partially open lips.  We can ask her for a kiss, and she'll turn her head toward you and give you a big wet one on the lips. 

The other day, I picked Baby up for a reason I can't quite remember now.   She reached out her little arms and grabbed my face.  I wasn't sure what she was doing, but she pulled me down and planted me a wet one on my lips. 

How sweet is that?  My heart totally melted and of course I had to brag to Husband that Baby gave me a kiss without having been instructed. 

It's moments like these that make me proud to be a mom. 

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Attachment Parenting

I never heard of attachment parenting until I became a parent.   For those of you who are unaware, attachment parenting is a pretty recent term given to a style of parenting.  According to Dr. Sears, there are seven characteristics of attachment parenting.  You can view them at http://www.askdrsears.com/topics/attachment-parenting/what-ap-7-baby-bs .  Without even trying, I fit the profile perfectly.  Let's go through the seven characteristics: 
1)  Birth Bonding. 
I'm not sure exactly what this means, but Baby and I certainly bonded right after she was born.  She never left my side in the hospital, and Husband was always right there with us.

2)  Breastfeeding
This is one thing I completely advocate and made sure to research and prepare myself for.  So far we are sixteen months strong (I know, it's a long time!), with no plans to stop.  I want her to wean herself when she is ready, not when Mommy is ready.  Maybe by the time she reaches college...

3)  Babywearing

Hello Moby Wrap and Baby Bjorn.  Baby never wanted to be put down, so we wore her.  We still do, actually.  Gotta love having a small child. 

4)  Bedding close to baby
Yup.  We've done co-sleeping since she was born (remember, I'm lazy and don't want to walk to the next room to get her for her feeding).  Only recently have we moved her to sleeping in her crib in her own room. However, she's usually back in our bed around 2 AM.  I think since I'm on summer vacation now I'll be working more on getting her to stay all night in her own crib.  We'll see how this goes. 

5)  Belief in the language value of your baby's cry
Yup, I cannot stand to hear her cry.  It grates on my nerves, makes my  blood pressure rise and I end up snapping at Husband.  Therefore, I attend to her when she cries (hence the reason she ends up in our bed at 2AM). 

6)  Beware of baby trainers
Before I had Baby I completely thought we would adhere to a nice little schedule; eat every few hours, nap at certain times, sleep through the night (HA!), but little did I know that was a nice little fairy tale.  Since I can't stand to see my child upset (don't get me wrong, she has tantrums that I ignore), I couldn't go through the agony of trying to train her to conform to something that wasn't natural to her.  Thus, no baby training for us. 

7)  Balance
Having balance between when to say yes and when to say no to your baby.  Also making time for yourself and your Husband.  I think Husband and I have been pretty good at this.  We communicate really well and make sure we are on the same page in terms of parenting.  We might not always agree, but at least we know where the other stands. 

And there you have it, I practice attachment parenting. 

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Umbrella Stroller

I think my stroller collection is now complete.  Earlier I complained that I didn't have the right types of strollers for all occasions.  I started off with my travel system stroller, great for leisurely walks.  Then I added in my jogging stroller, which doesn't catch and lets me go fast.  The most recent addition is my little umbrella stroller.  Now I don't hit things when I walk around stores in the mall!

Baby likes it too, although there are no spaces for drinks or bags.  I suppose that is the point, though.  It's supposed to be small and compact. The other complaint that I have is that the handles are so low.  I have to bend a little to push it.  Husband has to bend a lot more.  I need to see if I can buy some handle extensions or something.  I'm sure they make those somewhere.  If not, patent here I come. 

Monday, June 20, 2011

Bathtime

Baby used to love bathtime.  She would stand eagerly at the side of the tub as we filled it with water.  We would line her toys up on the ledge so she could toss them in and laugh at the splash they made.  Husband and I looked forward to bathtime because it was a good bonding time (and the person not giving the bath was able to clean the kitchen!). 

Then something changed.

I have no idea what it was.

All of a sudden Baby did not like bathtime anymore.  We would start the bath and she would run the other direction.  We would toss her toys in the water like we used to and she wanted nothing to do with them.  We would dangle her toes in and she would start to cry and do the sign for all done (it's so hard to ignore that!). 

When we would ignore her, she would start screaming at the top of her lungs.  Whoever was giving her the bath would move as quickly as they possible could to wash her off and get her out of there.  It was no longer a fun thing to do with Baby and Husband and I would attempt to negotiate with each other whenever it was our turn to give her a bath.  

In order to ease her fears (I read that babies start to develop irrational fears around this age, or attempt to assert their independence.  In this case, I think Baby developed an irrational fear.  Seriously.  You should have heard the way she was screaming), I started taking baths with her.  She would let me hold her in the bathtub and wash her down without any crying.  If I tried to get out, however, she wanted out with me. 

I even convinced Husband to put his swimsuit on and sit in the tub with her for bathtime.  Needless to say, I became the primary bath giver. 

Fast forward a month and a half later and Baby is happy in the bath again.  I slowly transitioned my way out of the bathtub with her to sitting next to the tub again.  She still runs away at the mention of bathtime, but at least she isn't screaming her lungs out anymore.  Why that happened, I'll never know. 

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Dirty and Mismatched

Recently I was going through family photos with my mother.  We were looking at old pictures of me and comparing them to my own Baby.  I saw a lot of similarities and a lot of differences.  

Some of our facial features and expressions are very similar.  Our hair is completely different.  Baby has light brown, gorgeous curls.  I had stick straight super blond hair.  I had more of a complacent look, while Baby is most certainly more mischievous.  You can see it in her eyes.   

One thing I noticed was how dirty I was in all the pictures.  Like, really dirty.  I was covered from head to toe in mud or sand or pudding, or something!  My face was splotched with some substance or other.  My hands and arms were caked with dark spots.  My clothes and diaper were spotted as well. 

I asked my mother why, and she said she thought I needed to explore and there was no harm in it.  This made me feel better about letting my own Baby get dirty.  Why does she need to be clean every second?  Why can't she feel the dirt between her fingertips and let it dribble down her shirt?  Why not? 

Another thing I noticed, especially when looking at childhood pictures of me was how silly my clothes were.  Or lack thereof ( I ran around in diapers a lot).  My mother said she never fought with us over our clothes, but let us have independence and dress ourselves.  It wasn't something that was worth a fight. 

I'm not sure how I feel about that one.  I'm sure at the time I felt liberated and independent.  Like I was a big girl. 

But my outfits were terrible! 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Sleep Like a Baby

It has been the best past few nights ever. 

For the first time in sixteen months, Baby slept through the night.  Yes, the FIRST time in SIXTEEN MONTHS! 

If you recall, I wrote a blog post about the definition of sleeping through the night.  My Baby does not like sleep.  She hates it with a passion and fights it until she can fight no more.  She wakes up every few hours or so and fights going back to sleep.  She will yell and scream at the top of her little lungs. 

Sad to say, I did try the cry it out method.  After a week of my child screaming for hours on end, I gave that method up and figured she would learn how to sleep in her own time. 

We try to put her down around 7:30 or 8 pm then get up around 6:30 or 7 am.   In between those hours, she wakes up at least three times.  Which means Mommy wakes up at least three times.  Or she hits Husband to wake up.  That's beside the point.  The point is, she doesn't sleep through the night.    

Sixteen months after her birth, she is starting to figure things out.  Take that, Mr.Ferber. 

The first night, she slept from 11 pm until 5:30 am. 

The second night from 8:30 pm until 6:00 am. 

I'm in heaven. 

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

It's a mad, mad, mad, mad world.

Hello! 

I know, you are surprised to see me.  Thought I fell of the face of the earth, didja?  Well, here's a few things that have happened in the past couple of months to get you updated. 

A couple of week's after Baby's one year appointment she got really sick.  We had gotten her one-year shots and she totally reacted to everything.  Her personality changed, she stopped doing her baby sign, and took up a new habit of screaming.  Daycare noticed a big change in her, I spoke to a doctor too many times to count, and lost a lot of sleep.  

I freaked out about autism and had to quit reading Google and blog posts or I was going to go insane. 

A month later she was back to her normal self, with just a few screaming bouts here and there. 

Then my grandfather passed away.

Then Husband went away for work and I was a single mom for a bit. 

Husband came home from work travel and brought with him strep throat. 

I was once again a single mom, this time to two babies. 

Husband is now all better, Baby thinks she is two, and I start my summer vacation at the end of this week. 

I love summer. 

The End. 

P.S.  More to come about Baby and her escapades soon, I promise! 

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Eat your Vegetables

I never understood how parents said their children wouldn't eat their vegetables.  I just thought babies ate what parents put in front of them.  End of story. 

Apparently not. 

Baby is a super picky eater.  No way does she just eat what we put in front of her.  I have no idea why this is.  I don't believe we've ever given her any indication that a particular food is not yummy.  We always make mmmm sounds when we give her something, and even eat it in front of her so that she knows what she is supposed to do with it.

She has a mind of her own, however.

Lately, it's been a struggle to get her to eat her fruits and vegetables.  She loves oatmeal, eggs, rice, pastas, cheeses, etc., but not her fruits and veggies.  She's become more picky over time.  She's even been turning down the Gerber Puffs (which she used to eat like candy), so maybe she has just outgrown them?

I read in a parenting magazine about this very issue a while ago.  It said that to trick your child into eating the veggies, serve them as an appetizer before the food the child really enjoys.  I've been doing that, and it really works!  When Baby sees me start to cook dinner (or when she knows that we are about to eat), she will start doing the hungry sign.  I cook the vegetables first and feed those to her while I make the rest of the meal.  It's been working great!  She thinks she is getting a treat before the actual dinner time, and I feel good because she is actually eating something healthy.

 

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Baby Dolls

We need to get Baby her own baby doll. I'm thinking her stuffed bears and glow worm are not going to suffice much longer. 

It's funny, I never thought much about gender specific items.  Husband and I are not too into buying Baby toys (okay, he is, but they are more "boy-ish" toys, such as cars, animals, etc.).  Since I'm cheap and into "natural learning" (I just made that phrase up, but you get the idea!), I haven't bought her any toys.  Don't worry, she has plenty that other people have given her for Christmas, birthday, etc. 

Well, lately we noticed that Baby is drawn towards other babies (real and not real).  She points at them and talks to them.  The toy ones that she can pick up she gives kisses to and sits them on chairs.  She tries to feed them and walks around cradling them.  The other Sunday we noticed her in the nursery playing with a baby doll and putting it to bed in a crib.  Husband and I looked at each other and said, "We need to get her a baby doll."   

I wonder if this is a gender specific thing since she is a girl, or if this is something that all children go through, when they want to imitate those around them and start internalizing what goes on in their lives. 

Anyway, baby dolls here we come.

 

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

What's the weight limit of a dishwasher?

Baby is so cute when she watches me do chores.  She wants to do what I do and take over for me.  When I do dishes, she will come and take dishes out of the dishwasher, then put them back in.  I have to be strategic about where I place the glass items if I don't want her to take them.  I also take out the silverware holder and load that separately.  I'll sneak it in at the very end right before I close the dishwasher door.

Today I was doing dishes and Baby was "helping" as usual.  However, this time she discovered that the height of the dishwasher door when it is open is just perfect for her to sit on.  Then climb on.  Pretty soon she was in the middle of the open door.  I contemplated letting her stay, since she was happy and playing (you never want to interrupt a happy and playing child.  It's like the let sleeping babies lie rule), but figured Husband would be angry if he came home to a broken dishwasher door.

What's the weight limit on those things anyway?

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Stroller Envy

Over the past year I have had stroller envy.  I see other moms with jogging strollers easily maneuvering their way over potholes and going at a speed greater than a snail while I have a hard time going over curbs and my wheels get stuck if I try to go any quicker than a walk. 

Don't get me wrong, the stroller I have is fabulous.  Baby loves it, it has tons of storage, and it's great for casual walks.

However, I highly recommend having a jogging stroller.   A friend of mine recently gave me hers and I love it!  It's so much nicer to be able to jog (working on losing that baby tummy), and go on paths that are not paved.  It is also a lot lighter and practically goes on its own.  It even has a leash attached to it so it doesn't get away from you.

Now I have umbrella stroller envy. When shopping, Baby has to be contained or she runs all over the place and touches things.  My original stroller is hard to navigate through rows and racks, especially in little boutique stores.  My jogging stroller is also too large.  I've seen people with tiny strollers that can go around the rows with ease. 

I think I'm going to start a stroller collection. 

Friday, April 1, 2011

I'm Free!

As you know, breastfeeding has been very important to me.  Before having Baby I read tons of material on it, heard horror stories about it, and stressed over it.  Wanting to breastfeed is part of the reason I chose to have a natural childbirth.  I had read that babies born naturally (no drugs involved) had an easier time latching on.  It worked out for Baby and I, and I never had any major problems nursing her (besides the one clogged milk duct about six months in, but that's all).

When I went back to work Baby was nursing quite frequently (she was six months).  Therefore, I pumped during my prep time (between ten and eleven in the morning), during lunch (between 12:45 and 1:15) and after school (between 3 and 4 in the afternoon).  Then I would go get Baby, nurse her before we left daycare, take her home, nurse her again a bazillion times, put her to bed, nurse her some more when she woke up, you get the idea.  I was a milk making machine.

My goal was to nurse Baby until she turned one, at the bare minimum.  One was the magic age when she could start having regular cow's milk and breastmilk was no longer going to provide all the nutrients she needed.  I planned on pumping until that time.

Well, Baby turned one and she showed absolutely no sign of letting up.  However, I was still going to follow through with easing off the pumping.  I highly admire those people who do it for long periods of time.  It's such a hassle. In the morning I would have to pack up the supplies (cooler with ice packs, cleaned bottles, and pumping accessories) all in my oversized bag.  Once at work I plugged everything in and set it up so it was ready to go when my prep period came.  Then I would pull out the supplies, hook myself up, sit there for at least ten minutes (I usually only pumped until I had my necessary three ounces.  Sometimes it took twenty minutes, some times it took ten), then clean myself up, clean my supplies, and store everything until I could take it all home.  Once home, I put the milk in the freezer bags, which then went into the freezer, and sanitized the pumping equipment and bottles.  Repeat the process the next day. 

After Baby turned one, I started to slowly ease off when I pumped.  Since I was doing an after school program, I cut out the after school pumping first.  That went okay and I didn't feel too uncomfortable.  I did that for about two weeks. Then, I started cutting out the lunch sessions.  It would have made more sense to cut out the morning sessions first, but timewise I needed my lunch more.  I did that a couple times a week, working up to all week.  Then I cut out the last session (the morning one).  This was the most uncomfortable.  It was usually at the morning session where I collected the most milk.

The first few days of not pumping at all I was definitely feeling it.  I was also having letdowns in the middle of lunchtime (thank goodness for nursing pads!).  I had to hurry to daycare to feed Baby so I could feel comfortable again.

I have to say, it feels great not lugging around all my equipment and hooking myself up multiple times a day.  I felt guilty about not providing Baby with my own milk while she's at daycare, but I know she's able to still get it from me at home.

Did I mention I'm free?

Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Nightly Checklist

It's taken us a while to get some sort of routine going in terms of chores and house responsibilities, but we are finally starting to get in a groove so to speak. 

I am a neat freak by nature.  I am the type A personality that has to have everything just so.  In college, I had everything color coded.  My notebooks matched the colors of my textbooks, and I had a matching pencil to go with each one.  I like to keep things free of clutter and enjoy the minimalist look.  While I'm not that creative in the decorating department, I can clean and organize and dust.

Enter Husband.

He and I are polar opposites.  I swear he has blinders on.  He just doesn't seem to notice things.  He sets them down wherever, refuses to sort through items and instead has papers and old mail and clothing and old toys and electronics just everywhere or piled up. He says he will take care of things "later" and "later" never comes.  It doesn't bother him if the toilet isn't clean.  Or if the floor is dirty.  Or there are dishes in the sink (wait, this is the only one that DOES bother him). 

The first couple of years we were married, I did most of the housecleaning.  We were both going to school and working, so we were both pretty busy.  Husband worked Saturdays while I would stay home and spend the time cleaning, organizing, and trying to make my 400 square foot studio apartment up to par.  Looking back, I think I did a pretty good job.

However, I soon realized that this is the 21st century and no way do I want to do all of the cleaning.  Husband didn't really care to clean, so I learned to let my standards go.  No more multi-hour cleaning sessions for me.  The house may be a little messier, cluttered, and dirty.  But Husband didn't care, so therefore I made the conscious effort not to be as anal about it  (if you come to my classroom, it is immaculate, by the way.  I can be as organized as I want and nobody will change it.  It's empowering).

Seven years and a few residences later, enter Baby.

Since Husband and I are both working full time, taking care of the house went by the wayside.  In a terrible, horrible way.  The bathrooms were disgusting, dishes were piling everywhere, mail was going unsorted, nothing was hanging in the closet because the clothes were all either in the clean pile or the dirty pile. 

On top of being a new mom, nursing Baby, working, sleeping, just plain living, I couldn't keep up. 

I let Husband know how I was feeling (remember, he honestly didn't see a problem.  Men!), and so I came up with our nightly checklist. 

I get home earlier, so it makes sense that I do most of the cooking.  Husband is fine with cooking, but since he gets home later, we wouldn't be eating until after Baby's bedtime.  Not quite realistic.  Instead, he has a meal waiting for him when he gets home.  Now isn't that nice?

After dinner the checklist begins.  It's broken into two sections.  I have to be very very specific here. 

Person A:
Give Baby bath
Change Baby
Put Baby's clothes and diaper away (we use cloth so it goes in the laundry room)
Read to Baby

Person B:
Clear table dishes and put food away
Empty/load dishwasher
Wipe down table/island/countertops/stove with kitchen cleaner
Wipe down Baby's high chair
Clean floor from Baby's mess
Fold 1 laundry load, throw in another

We alternate every night, unless there is a special circumstance.  We've been doing it for a few weeks now and it's working out really well.  It's nice to come home in the evenings to a clean kitchen and know that I'll have clean clothes to wear the next day. 

If time, I will still do some deep cleaning (bathrooms, vacuuming, etc.) over the weekends. 

 

Friday, March 25, 2011

One Year Old Pictures

Baby was scheduled to have her one year old pictures last month.  Then croup struck and we had to reschedule for this month.  We can call them her thirteen month pictures instead.  

I wracked my brain trying to think of cute poses and outfits for Baby to do and wear.  Where should we take them?  What would be memorable and artsy and unique?

I asked everyone I knew.  I Googled one year baby pictures.  I saw some really cool ideas and things to do.  I spent hours going over other babies' pictures and created my own list of possible poses and props.

A popular option was wearing a tutu and pearls.  Well, I don't have a tutu for Baby.  Why would I?  There's really no practical reason and I'm very pragmatic.  Same with the pearls.  I have no pearls.  Scratch the tutu and pearls idea then. 

One that came up most often was the birthday cake or cupcake pose.  I decided Baby HAD to do this.  Naked Baby covered in cupcake and frosting goodness, licking her fingers greedily.  How cute would that be?

Well, the night before I figured I would need cupcakes if I was going to do the pose (the naked part I could handle.  I had a cute cloth diaper I would have her in).  Well, I wanted to do something a little healthier, and I had bananas that were a little over ripe.  Why not bake muffins, then frost those?  They should look like cupcakes in the pictures, right?  I'm so creative!

I baked my muffins.  While they did turn out yummy, they in no way resembled cupcakes.  I didn't even bother frosting them because that would have tasted rather gross.  Would you want a sugary sweet frosted banana muffin? I didn't think so.

I made Husband go to the store and he picked up a few store bought ones.  I cheated, but I wanted to get that picture.

Picture day arrived and our lovely photographer (a super creative friend of mine who did Baby's six month pictures)  came to the house.  We decided to head to the park around the corner to get some good outdoor shots.  Don't worry, I remembered to bring my cupcakes.  

Baby was very unsure of what we were doing.  For the first few shots, I plopped her down in the grass barefoot.  She was wearing a cute peasant type dress with matching bloomers.  She hated the grass on her bare feet and just stood there.  So much for cute barefoot in the park pose.

I put on her dress shoes (which are a tad to small), and she didn't like those very much either.  Again, she just stood there and kept pointing to the play equipment.  We decided to give in and stick her in the baby swings, which she LOVES.  We got a few good shots of her enjoying those.  Same with the slide and stairs.

Another pose I really wanted was one of Husband and I standing, holding on to Baby's hands while she stood in between us.  The shot would feature her and our legs.  We tried it, but she didn't want to hold our hands.  She just wanted to scream and run off.

Then we saw a doggie.  An older Basset Hound and owner were meandering along.  Baby saw him and started pointing and squealing, "Doggie!  Doggie!:  The owner said we could pet the dog, which was really  nice of him.  However, when we got closer, Baby froze up and didn't know what to do.  Scratch the Baby and dog pose.

We then brought out the cupcake.  We sat Baby on the bench, but she didn't want to sit.   We tried to tempt her with the cupcake, but she just wanted to run around.  I ended up eating the cupcake. 

Then it started to sprinkle, so we headed home to try cupcake shots there.

I stripped Baby down and plopped a cupcake in the middle of the floor for her.  She wasn't interested.  She wanted to go back outside (she is an expert at the Baby Sign for "outside").  I think I may have eaten another cupcake trying to get her interested.  I smeared frosting on her tummy.  She ignored me.  Tiger, however, noticed and wanted to know what was going on.  He ended up licking a little frosting off of Baby's tummy.

That was the end of the shoot.  My friend had to go and Baby was pretty much done.

You can bet that after my friend left, Baby suddenly became very interested in the cupcake.  And she was all smiles and giggles.

Figures.

Needless to say, we didn't get the exact poses that I wanted, but we did get some amazing pictures!