Baby D Makes Three

born December 27, 2012

month 11

IMG_7140dear Cora,

I can’t believe how close you are to turning the big O-N-E. the past 11 months have gone by at warp speed and my head is slightly spinning. you are changing daily and are such a joy in our life. we are so excited for your first holiday season. you’ve been wearing santa jammies since the end of October so you can tell how excited your mommy is about Christmas this year. everything is a little better, a little brighter with you around to share it with.

you love playing with your mommy and daddy and laugh all the time now. you wave “hi,” “bye,” and “nite-nite.” you are pretty consistent with signing that you are hungry, and you sometimes sign when you are all done. you “say” no constantly by shaking your head, you point at things that interest you. you are trying very hard to stand up by yourself. if you are holding on to something, you will let go for a few seconds at a time. you are also trying really hard to climb. we are constantly stopping you from getting your little knee up on your play table and your daddy even caught you trying to climb out of your crib this month! you do this really cute thing when you are playing in the living room if I sit on the floor with you. you will alternate between playing on your own, and coming to me and crawling in my lap to give me a hug. you have started hugging really hard if you are the one to initiate the hug. you struggle and wiggle away if your daddy or I initiate the hug. you also occasionally give big kisses.

you still don’t have any teeth! every time you get really cranky, I think to myself, maybe this time it will be teething, but it never is 😛 you are so fast! you can walk around the coffee table to steal a remote, or climb halfway up the small staircase before we realize what you are doing. we moved our living room back to the carpeted room in our house as that stairwell can accommodate a baby gate.

this month you helped your daddy celebrate his birthday and celebrated halloween. you were the cutest fluffy duck anyone had ever seen. and that costume was so warm. which was perfect since we went to our church’s harvest festival and it was a little chilly. the amount of people was pretty overwhelming to you so you cuddled a lot, but you definitely had fun people watching. this month you also had another sinus infection and pink eye 😦 but the antibiotics kicked in quickly and knocked it out. besides the few days you really didn’t feel good, you are still sleeping great! you don’t nap very well at daycare so sometimes you are pretty cranky when we get you home in the evenings, but we are getting pretty good at working around your moods.

girlfriend, you love to eat. and get so excited every time there is a new food to try. you especially love snacks and goldfish and graham crackers have become some of your favorite things. you would eat them at every meal if I let you.

you have been going through a huge mama’s girl phase the last 6ish weeks. you scream and cry when I leave the room and hurt your daddy’s feelings by not wanting to be held by him. as much as I love knowing how much you love me, I can’t wait for this phase to end. it is exhausting for all of us.

you are wearing size 3 diapers, although they are still a little big. the 2s were getting too small though, and your skinny little legs make transitioning sizes hard 😛 you are still wearing size 3-6 and 6-9 month clothes.

favorites

Cora – standing, “walking,” playing peekaboo, waving, “saying no,” playing on the coffee table, play table, and walking toys.

Me – hearing you laugh, seeing your big gummy smiles, cuddling, watching you learn.

pictures

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no

my baby turned 11 months old today. I overslept and didn’t have time to give her bottle and cuddle her. she had to feed herself. and I was equal parts sad and proud. I have felt out of sorts all day because that cuddle time in the morning grounds me and prepares me for the day. without it, I’m left wandering. and yet, my sleepy babe held her own bottle and drank the whole thing without spilling a drop while I rushed about to get ready. a month ago I would have been late to work, with no other option but to feed her myself. sad and proud.

tomorrow is thanksgiving. I have been looking forward to letting her eat thanksgiving food all year. she still doesn’t have any teeth. but she will enjoy mashed potatoes and stuffing, and probably some other goodies.

on a rushed trip to carters last night a sales girl told Cora that she has the most beautiful blue eyes she had ever seen. Cora told her no with her wrinkled nose and head shake. the sales girl and I laughed. while feeding her dinner, Cora started crying and saying “maaamaaamaaamaaa.” so I said, “I’m the mama.” Cora told me no. with tears and a head shake. I almost cried myself.

no is a new favorite word. and my only response is no.

no

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changing

dear Cora,

yesterday morning, I got you out of your crib, and you had changed overnight. your facial features were just a little bit different. the expressions you make a little more pronounced. it is amazing and terrifying, the rate at which you change. I spend whole minutes every day trying to memorize everything about you, because tomorrow you will be a different little girl. you are funny and sweet and kind. you are also stubborn, hardheaded, and determined. you are becoming so much more communicative. you wave now to say “hi,” “bye,” or “night-night.” you sign when you are hungry most of the time. and you sparingly sign “all done.”  this weekend you learned to shake your head to say “no.” and used it. a lot. your daddy and I giggled every time you shook your little head at us and whispered under our breaths “uh oh, what has she learned?”  you tried to share your bottle with me a few times on Friday evening, and almost popped it right into my mouth because I was not expecting it. and on Friday night when I asked you if you were ready for bed, you waved to say “night-night” and then looked frantically around because your daddy was not in the room and you always say “night-night” to him before you go to bed. I love these sweet moments with you, and am so thankful I get to be your mommy.

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the end of breastfeeding

Dear Cora,

last week we stopped breastfeeding. Thursday, November 14th was the last day you nursed. I saw this day coming early on. I knew we weren’t going to make it a whole year when I went back to work and pumping was so hard. I knew, but I still hoped. and so, when you decided you were done, I grieved. I grieved the loss of that special bonding – breastfeeding was the one thing only I could provide you. I grieved your growth – no longer wanting to nurse means you are becoming more independent and growing into a child, no longer my dependent infant. I grieved the loss of that extra cuddle time – as tired as it made me, those late night and early morning snuggles were still cherished.

but then I celebrated. I celebrated that we made it 10 and a half months! Just one and a half months shy of my goal. that’s not bad. I celebrated that you are such a healthy, happy, and growing baby. I celebrated that when I get sick, I can take medicine now. I celebrated that I didn’t give up, that I let you decide when you were done. I celebrated that for the first time in 20 and a half months, your nutrition and well-being isn’t completely reliant on my body. I celebrated that your daddy can take over the late night feeding, so hopefully I will be less tired.

and you know what? the snuggle time with you while I feed you your bottle is still just as special, and since you aren’t frustrated with me for trying to coax you to nurse before getting your bottle, you are even more cuddly. after you finish your bottle, you sort of sit up a little, and put your arms around my core, and then snuggle your head onto my chest. it is one of my new favorite things.

I am so thankful breastfeeding was successful for us. It was one of the things I worried about most while being pregnant. I am also thankful you are such an easy going baby, and that formula was just fine for you too, when I couldn’t produce enough milk to support your growth.

I love you, darling one. continue to grow. continue to reach milestones that make me grieve the loss of your babyhood. because then we can continue to celebrate as well.

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peekaboo

yesterday evening I had one of those experiences as a mother that I just want to bottle up and keep forever. it may be one of my favorite memories of Cora to date. we were all snuggling on the couch with the fluffy blankets we have on it. Cora pulled the blanket up to be above her head and I heard her start to giggle “heeheehee” so Jason and I started saying “where’s Cora, where is she?” and she giggled harder, and kicked her little legs in excitement. Jason pulled the blanket down and we exclaimed, “There she is! Peekaboo!” and she absolutely rolled with laughter. we played peekaboo over and over. completely instigated by my fun-loving girl. every time she pulled that blanket up, her giggles would ring out in the room, and her legs would kick excitedly under the blanket. and my heart grew 15 sizes. I have had a hard couple of weeks. I started a new job two weeks ago, and it has been a harder transition than I anticipated. spending an evening playing peekaboo with my baby girl was exactly what I needed. and the fun we had last night has kept me going through this last work day of the week.

I tried to get the fun and games on video to share, but every time the camera came out, she stopped playing. so I put the camera away. and soaked up the fun we were having. and tried my hardest to commit that moment to my memory forever. November is always a month full of thanksgiving for me. I love to count my blessings every year. this year, my blessings have multiplied exponentially, and having fun with my daughter is just one of the many things I am thankful for.

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month 10

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dear Cora,

happy 10 months, dear one!

this month has been so full of fun. you love playing, and singing, and dancing. when we sing to you, you dance and clap. you waved bye bye for the first time on the 23rd. it was the funniest wave, you just put your hand up and held it there. too cool to actually wave your arm around 😛 you also signed “all done” after I signed it to you! I think that means you are starting to really understand it, and hopefully will use it more and more. you also sign “hungry” now, which is fantastic, unless you do it at the grocery store when we aren’t even half way done shopping 😛 luckily, puffs always save the day.

you are a total champ at pulling yourself up to standing, and we had to lower the crib to the lowest height this month. you are growing like a weed. I feel like you are so tall now. when you pull yourself up on your play table, you can reach so much farther. you are also getting a further reach at the coffee table. no cell phone, remote control, napkin, or cup is safe with you around 😛 we really should get rid of the coffee table, but I don’t know where I would put my glass 😛

you got an ear infection this month and are taking antibiotics for it. you were such a sad baby for a few days, it broke my heart. you also had basically no appetite, and weren’t eating very much. it worried me a lot, so we went to the doctor and he prescribed antibiotics. once the antibiotics kicked in, your appetite started to come back and your mood improved a ton. you are back to eating your normal amount, and drinking all of your bottles.

you still don’t have a single tooth! even without teeth, your pediatrician gave us the ok to start feeding you some softer table food. you had rotisserie chicken, bread, cheese, green beans, and baked potato this month. you love picking food up and feeding yourself, but you do get a little frustrated that you can’t get the quantity of food you are used to eating in the same amount of time 😛

I worry that you are almost done breastfeeding. I really wanted to breastfeed for a whole year, but then pumping was so awful so I stopped doing that. we have made it a whole two months longer without pumping, which is kind of a miracle, but you get less and less interested every day. I’m already starting to grieve the loss of that special time with you. giving up breastfeeding means you are growing from my tiny baby into a little girl, and I’m just not ready.

you are sleeping great. your bedtime is around 7 pm, I nurse and feed you a bottle at 9 and then you usually sleep until 6 am when I nurse and feed you another bottle. most mornings you go back to sleep after that and sleep until Daddy wakes you up for school around 7 am. I am so thankful you are turning into such a great sleeper.

you are so expressive lately! you make the funniest faces, and “talk” really loudly. it’s quite funny and entertaining. you also rarely sit still for me to take photos of you anymore. most of the time, I get at least ten photos of you crawling closer to the camera and/or reaching for the lens. 😛

you are still wearing size 2 diapers, and 3-6 and 6-9 month clothing.

favorites

Cora – standing, playing with anything you aren’t supposed to, crawling super fast, anything that makes sound or plays music.

Me – sleeping through the night and snuggling you in the morning.

pictures

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