eleven months

dear s,

holy cow! you’re almost a year old! this time next month we’ll be celebrating your first birthday, and your official graduation from baby to toddler. well, really, you’re a toddler already. you’re my little walker now! you get better and better every day, and now you can stand up from a sitting position, cruise/run around the room while holding onto your wheelybug or the sofa, and walk half a dozen to a dozen steps confidently before falling down on your adorable little bottom. you’re a handful now, but we love (almost) every minute of it.

although you spend most of your energy on moving (and moving and moving!), you’re starting to talk a lot more, too. somehow in the last month you lost the ability to say mama, but call both of us dada instead. you still love to make animal noises, your favorite being meowing like a cat. you can also parrot our own speech, and repeat gone, bye, and yeah most of the time. you call gram gaga and like to chat to your kitty when you’re falling asleep. i can’t wait for you to start talking even more!

your social skills are developing quickly and you love to play with (read: climb on) other babies and older kids. every week we go to kindermusik class with a mixed age range of kids. we also meet up with some friends who have babies at restaurants, the library, and cafes. this weekend you went to your first birthday party! i can’t believe the other babies in our nct class are starting to turn one. it’s your turn soon!!!

we’re starting the process of moving you to your own room by napping you in your nursery, and so far you’re doing remarkably well. you generally sleep from 7pm to 5 or 6am, but lately you’ve been getting up at 4 thinking it’s playtime. please, s, give us a little more sleep! you still take two naps most days, but i think before too long you’ll drop one or the other. take your time! really, it’s ok to sleep lots!

you’re a champion eater, having three full meals and one or two snacks a day. you’re almost competent with your sippy cup, but don’t really understand that a cup without a lid will spill if you bash it and throw it around. you’ve decided you don’t like cucumber very much any more, but love cheese, bread, hummus (the piri piri kind!), and anything starchy. you also like peas, blueberries, fromage frais, and weetabix. you’re happy to explore new flavors but let us know when you don’t like something, either by making a face and spitting it out or sweeping everything off the table and flipping over your plate and mat.

you only take milk from me in the morning and at night time, and sometimes once during the day, but you’re more interested in grown up food and need me less and less. but that’s a good thing, because instead you’re becoming a cuddly bunny who likes to lie on top of us while we scratch or rub your back. like father, like daughter! you also love to give and blow kisses and laugh all the time.

thankfully you still love to read. you sit so nicely with daddy while he reads to you and even read yourself stories in your crib while we get ready in the morning. your favorite books are the touchy feely ones because you really like to be involved in the reading.

thanks for being such a fabulous baby for the last eleven months. and happy almost birthday!!!

love you! ❤

happy eleven months!

happy eleven months!

Advertisements

how (not) to travel with an eight month old and other musings

hello, old friends! it’s been far too long. i’ve had a million and one things i’ve wanted to write about in the last few weeks, and approximately zero time to write about them. okay, that’s a lie. i’ve spent my fair share of time vegging on the sofa, but i decided i deserved it. it’s been a long month.

my grandfather passed away last month. he was pretty much the coolest man ever. it was so sad to say goodbye to him but so wonderful to celebrate his life. i was lucky enough to be his first (and possibly most spoiled) grandchild and to have countless memories with him over the past 27 years. in the end he was in pain so his death was a blessing for him. i know he’s looking down now and smiling, telling all his friends that he’s better than the weather.

ok, enough of that. my grandpa wouldn’t want any of us to mope around. so instead i’m going to whine. a lot.

if you get nothing else from this post, please remember the following:

DO NOT TRAVEL WITH AN EIGHT MONTH OLD BABY. EVER.

seriously. the four (yes, all four) flights we took on the way to and from the states last month were probably the worst combined experiences of my life. p couldn’t travel with us, so it was just me, s, and my poor, defenseless little sister (who has since vowed never to have children). why was it so horrible, do you ask? well, i’ll tell you. that baby screamed for a total of EIGHT(hundred?) hours while i held her against her will in my lap. virtually every passenger on all four airplanes gave me the stinkeye. a very well intentioned and well endowed flight attendant nearly smothered my baby while attempting to stifle her cries. half a dozen other flight attendants and random staffers stole her out of my arms to cuddle/play with/comfort/annoy the shit out of her. how i managed to get home without leaving my poor darling baby in a bathroom somewhere and/or punching someone and being arrested by air marshalls is beyond me.

therefore i solemnly swear not to fly with my lovely and slightly demonic little girl until she is old enough to sit in her own seat and to be spoonfed benadryl. seriously. i can’t handle it. also, p is on night duty for the foreseeable future. which is forever.

enough of the whining. for now. to lift the mood and make everyone feel better, here are the photos we ordered from the fantastic francesca db photography. merry, merry christmas to you.

next time: s’s christmas list! because i know you all love a little bit of baby tat.

naked babies, days (and nights!) out, and milestones.

i’m finding it harder and harder to take time to write posts, but it’s so important that i get it down…partly because it seems like this whole baby brain thing never goes away, and partly because i know you all want to creep on my life more often. don’t lie, i do it too. 😉

so this week we had another normal stay at home mommy and baby week (but this is going to come to an end soon…stay tuned for updates on mommy solo life!). most days we like to get out of the house, and to be honest, s is a much happier baby when we’re going and doing and buying and eating out. which is great for my sanity, and not so great for the wallet. again, i need to become a crafty momma so i can stay at home and still make some money!!! (realistic) suggestions appreciated.

on saturday we took s to her first proper photo shoot! i’ve been kicking myself for not having the adorable newborn baby in a basket photos taken (sorry rachel, they are just so damned cute!) and so we decided christmas was the perfect time for s to make her debut. we went with the fabulous francesca db photography and didn’t regret it. s was a natural hambone and LOVED francesca. if you’re ever in the mood for some babysitting, s would love it! 😉 just kidding, she already has her hands full with two gorgeous twin girls and another baby on the way. the session was lovely and short (30 minutes, which was perfect for s) and consisted of solo shots of s as well as a few family pics (p was like, i don’t want to be in more than one picture that we buy…this is about s! talk about stage daddy.). s enjoyed the attention and ate her way through the plastic wrapping on a candy cane. i see a future as a model, perhaps?! here’s a sneak peek at one of the proofs from the session…we can’t wait to see the rest soon!

last night was guy fawkes night (as you brits will know) and i really really wanted to take s out. i’ve heard that fireworks can be a great sensory experience for babies and was keen for her to see it. cambridge has a fantastic FREE display and bonfire on midsummer common every year, and nearly 25,000 people turn out every year. it’s right over the river from us, so there was really no excuse not to go. i was a bit nervous about how s would react, but i bit the bullet and decided to go. i woke her up after bedtime (which she loved…not), snuggled her up in her teddy bear snowsuit, and popped her in the ergo. she’s at the age now where she doesn’t hate being in it, so it was actually really nice. we stayed across the road, out of the crowd, and watched comfortably from a distance. s LOVED the fireworks and stayed awake for the whole thing. it was freaking cold, though, so we headed home straight afterwards. i highly recommend taking your baby to a fireworks display, if you can get over the noise and the idea that they may or may not freak out. here’s a few shots of the night:

my little ewok…i mean teddy bear.

enjoying the fireworks!

at the moment i’m loving (almost) every moment at home with s. she’s so big now (8 months next week! stay tuned for the 8 month update post) and is finally a ‘proper’ baby. she’s so close to crawling…i’m pretty sure she can go backwards a little bit. we really need to get some gates going and properly babyproof this house. she can also clap, say dada (to both of us), wave, and sit up confidently by herself. i love my little girl! (someone please remind me of this post when i’m complaining about something or other in a few weeks’ time.)

it’s the most wonderful time of the year…for coughs and colds. also, i want to become a crafty(ier) mom.

so apparently colds last FOREVER. at least it feels that way right now. s has been nursing a very light case of the sniffles for the last few weeks and hasn’t really been that bothered about it. until this week. this week the floodgates opened and s’s whole face has been a ball of snot. poor thing. she’s still lovely and happy (most of the time…apparently colds make babies more liable to scream bloody murder when put down for a nap) but sounds like a chainsaw when she sleeps and can’t quite work out how to cough up the rattles in her chest.

she still manages to squeeze in her studies with a cold.

all of this lovely mucus in my life = tired mommy. for all of you lovely mommies out there currently thinking to yourselves, i have this parenting thing licked, easy peasy…you’re WRONG. you’re so massively wrong. i’ve finally decided to listen to all the wizened old mamas in my life who have always told me that as soon as you utter those silly words, your baby will find something else to completely mess up your sleep. i’m resigned to the fact that i will never regularly sleep through the night until my children are teenagers (if i’m not up waiting for them to come home past curfew…there might have been one or two members of my family responsible for doing that to my own mom a few times!) and so four hours in a row should be more than sufficient.

in other news, i’ve decided i need to get a hobby. preferably one that could make me money. now i’m not aspiring to be the next martha stewart, but a few wifey trades would serve me well. so i want to start sewing and doing other crafty things. the good news here is that this trade requires more shopping!!! so i officially want this for christmas (p are you listening?!) so that i can make adorable clothes, accessories, and decorations for s and our home. how freaking adorable are the baby accessories in this article?!?!? (not my baby, obviously.)

but don’t worry, i will still frequent the likes of fantastic shops like iviebaby (beware: once you click that link, you will want to buy everything in the whole entire etsy shop. also: look before you have your baby; there are some awesome ideas for kitting out baby’s room!).

seven months

dear sophia,

this past month has been CRAZY! on friday you turned seven months old. i think it’s about time i stop counting the weeks, but i take a picture every monday just to see how you’re developing.

this month i finally took you swimming for the first time, and you LOVED it! well, apart from when i dunked you under the water, but you got over it and get better every time we do it. you love kicking around the pool in an inner tube and splashing away for almost half an hour. you don’t love changing in and out of your bathing suit, but who does?!

you’re becoming a little pro at eating these days. you’ve progressed from eating sticks of food to eating pretty much whatever we give you. you still drop lots and spit bits out some of the time, but you can eat out of the palm of your hand and you’re definitely digesting most of your food (if you know what i mean, in the diaper department). you use all THREE (yes, three!) of your teeth to gnaw on things for quite a long time. meals usually take at least 30 minutes these days. favorites at the moment include any bread product, yogurt, tomatoes, and fruit. you eat three meals a day most days and sit nicely in any high chair. you love meal times but hate being cleaned up. in fact, your bloody murder scream is even louder this month (i didn’t think it was possible).

my little baby zoolander has finally learned how to turn left! you roll both ways around the room and you’re THIS close to crawling. when you’re playing on your tummy you can rotate your body around to get the toys you want. we think we saw you creep a little bit today, and we hope that next month we can report that you’re moving all around the place. even though that means lots more bumps on the head (something that has just started recently and stresses me out big time!). i think life is about to get a lot more interesting very very soon.

your sleeping is much much better lately, mostly because we (okay, i) finally plucked up the courage to sleep train you a little bit. last week we were at the end of our rope with trying to get you back to sleep in the middle of the night, so we let you cry in your travel cot for five minutes. the first time we tried this you cried for a total of eight minutes, and have never cried longer than that. you really can get yourself back to sleep if you try! you still rely on your dummy and frank 2.0 (yes, we lost frank this month, but mommy still doesn’t talk about it) to get yourself to sleep but whatever works is okay with us! you have two naps a day most days, unless you wake up particularly early and need an extra one to get you through the day. you don’t really need to eat at night anymore, but sometimes you like a feed and a cuddle after six to eight hours of sleep. we WILL be moving you into your own room this week (okay, i said it so it has to happen, right?) and you will officially be a big girl.

this month you’ve asserted your independence in lots of new ways and your lovely personality is starting to shine. you play nicely and happily by yourself and with other people. you know what you like and you’ll be damned if someone isn’t going to give it to you. you have a pair of LUNGS on you, girl! you love kissing and laughing and playing rough. you’re our lovely little baby girl now, growing up too quickly!

love you lots!

my lovely little girl ❤

date nights! or, i’m blogging and playing on pinterest while my husband watches gory films.

lately our little nighttime devil has become kind of an angel when it comes to going down at night. p gives her a bottle of expressed milk around seven and i pump, and we’re both usually finished before eight. it’s ALMOST as if we have our lives back! so this week we decided to go a little crazy with films…we’re thinking about exploring the world of lovefilm, and had a blockbuster voucher so have had a different movie every night. let’s just say it’s nice to feel back in the loop again after having to wait six months to watch the hunger games because it conveniently came out just after s was born. did i mention that before? sorry, i was a little pissed.

anyway, movie nights have been a really great way for p and i to spend a bit more time together. as you can tell by my current blogging, right? it’s not my fault, really i promise. he’s watching immortals (you know, the greek mythology bloodfest made by the same guys that did 300? me neither. i watched some guy get castrated and turned on the computer instead. ok so i made him watch one day the other night. let’s call it even.) and i’m catching up on the grownup world of facebook, online shopping, and pinterest. it actually feels really nice.

since we have only just come out of the newborn baby fog, we’re still fairly out of touch with civilization, so any suggestions for films/tv series/documentaries/etc. would be welcome! go crazy; we like anything and everything! ok, don’t get dirty, p IS a priest after all. 😉

pin of the day: loaded mashed potato cakes…if MODG approves then they’ve got to be good!

 

adorable photo (montage) of the day: crazy baby enjoying lemon. what?!

mmmmm lemon!

ok, now for your suggestions…go!!!

six months

dear sophia,

today you are six whole months old. it’s your half birthday!!! when we met you exactly six months ago, frankly i never thought we’d get here. life was really hard for awhile when you were born, mostly because people aren’t meant to survive without sleep. but we made it through, with lots of tears, poopy nappies, sleepless nights, and unhappy mommy and daddy times. it was the daytime cuddles, lovely kisses, exciting developments, and so many more amazing moments that got us through it. i spent half of my time willing you to do the next thing, because everything you did was so incredible, and half of my time telling myself to soak you up just as you were. it’s already hard to remember the early days, but luckily your daddy is clever and has a much better memory than me. i’m sure he remembers our first trip out of the house (to starbucks, where else?!), the first time you smiled, the first time you threw up all over him (hey, all memories don’t have to be super adorable!), and everything else between then and now.

at six lovely months you have come so far! you chatter away all day long…and sometimes all night long, but you’re getting much better. you can sit up by yourself and like to play like that for what seems like hours, but in actuality is only probably fifteen minutes because you’re a baby and your attention span is still so short. you roll around the room like a pro, but only to the right. when you get angry you tuck up your knees underneath and push yourself along. you’re not far from crawling at all! you have two big fat razor sharp teeth at the bottom of your mouth, which you use to bite toys, food, and hands! you’ve just started eating big girl foods and sitting up at the table with us. right now your favorites are toast with hummus, cucumber, and pizza (but shhh mommy definitely didn’t give you any to try ;)). rough play makes you belly laugh, but you HATE getting dressed after a bath. you scream so loud when i change you that i’m sure someone will someday rush to our door asking if you’ve been murdered. you like watching television, and sesame street is one of your favorites. you still love listening to classical music, but enjoy a bit of pop on occasion too. your favorite books are goodnight moon, wynken, blynken, and nod, and the very hungry caterpillar. night times are not always perfect…you still wake up once in the night for a feed and sometimes it’s hard to get you back to sleep. we haven’t had the heart to sleep train you yet, but this month we’re going to move you to your nursery so we have lots of big steps in store for all three of us.

you are such a happy, smiley, lovely baby that everyone around us comments on your loveliness, and it makes me so proud to be your momma. thank you for giving me a fantastic six months. i can’t wait to see what you will do next.

image

image

image

image