Thursday, January 24, 2013

One Year Ago

Exactly one year ago, to this very minute (more or less), I was holding my absolutely perfect daughter. Throughout the day today, I would think "I don't even want to think about what I was doing a year ago from this moment" because I was in labor. And while my labor was pretty easy, all things considered, it was not a walk in the park, either. However, when I was nursing Lorelei before bed tonight, I realized that at that very moment one year ago, I was also nursing her. I was nursing her for the very first time. And that moment was absolutely perfect.

It's hard to believe that a whole year has gone by. But it has. Last night, I put the finishing touches on our 2012 family photo album, an album that is almost completely about Lorelei. She has filled our hearts and our minds and our lives. She is ever present on my mind and in my heart. It's hard to believe you can love someone that much and have room for more. But every day I realize you can and you do. 

As I was showering tonight (a lovely, blissful shower uninterrupted by a tiny person playing on the bathroom floor--what my showers usually are like) I was thinking back on this year and what I've learned as a parent, a wife and a person. Here is what I came up with--in no real order:

1. Don't read parenting books. Or, if you do, read them with a giant, boulder-sized grain of salt. It's too easy for me to jump on the bandwagon of any parenting book. Just do what works and feels right.

2. Go outside and do something once a day, even if it is raining and yucky. Lorelei is at the point that she needs to get outside and see something besides the house. It's also really easy to sequester myself with the baby when I am home alone with her.

3. Don't plan too many things outside either. Another problem I have. I will frequently overbook ourselves--occasionally at the expense of a nap--just so we can go to a playdate. That's just as bad as sequestering ourselves at home.

4. Mommy talk is important. So is not mommy talk. Do both frequently.

5. I like my work and the people I work with. It's kind of like my "me" time. I can laugh and joke with my co-workers and their ridiculous antics (sloshball? Sticking 5 cookies in their mouths at once? Swoll Train? I work with boys. They're weird.) and then go home to my perfect baby.

6. I like being home with Lorelei. Enough that I would love to be a stay at home mom. But that's not in the cards right now. And I'm okay with that.

7. I'm anal retentive and a control freak. I'm okay with that too. I make lists and complete them. I like things to be done a certain way and get annoyed when things aren't done the way I like. As I tell my students, it's important to be flexible and try new things. I try to keep that in mind when the dishes are put away in the wrong spot.

8. Buy flowers. Put them in vases. They make me happy.

9. Have sex. Even when I am tired and think I don't really want to. It feels good and makes everyone happy. Win-win.

10. Things happen. Naps are missed. Lorelei eats a lot. Or not very much. She poops. She doesn't poop. Her mouth hurts. She bumps her head. She puts weird stuff in her mouth. 9 times out of 10, it's okay and certainly not something to stress about. Enjoy what is happening right now.

Today, we celebrated Lorelei's birthday with pancakes (Lafayette--not quite New Orleans-style, but close!) for breakfast, presents and dim sum for dinner. While we had banana muffins for dessert, Lorelei fell asleep before she could enjoy them. So we'll have them tomorrow night. In the next week, we are also going to San Francisco for an ice cream social birthday celebration for her with my SF friends, and a birthday party for family and our baby friends. Pretty good for a one year old!

In the end though, I find it fitting that as we celebrate the one year anniversary of Lorelei's birth, we also begin a new adventure: finding a new home. Just like the hermit crab in one of my favorite Eric Carle books, I love my home, it is decorated just the way I like it, but it's grown too small. Too small for two grown ups, one baby and two dogs. It's scary and exciting and wonderful. Just like this last year has been...
One hour old

One hour old

One week old

One year old

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

52 Weeks aka ONE YEAR OLD!!!

Weight: 20.8 pounds

Length: 28 inches

Favorite activity: Getting into EVERYTHING!

Favorite food: blueberries, blackberries, cheese, mashed potatoes...

Favorite spot: Anywhere she can make a mess!

Naughtiest moment: Torturing Finnegan! He is her very very best friend and she loves to give him hugs!

Important milestones: Teeth! Two teeth on the bottom, and two coming in on top! Also, pushing herself up into a standing postition all on her own--then falling down 5 seconds later.

How Mom's Feeling: I cannot believe a whole year has gone by. Where did the time go? Well, I know, actually. It's all in here! Visits with friends, trips to the park, the museum, San Francisco...It just boggles my mind that in a mere 12 months, Lorelei has gone from being a little (but very cute) lump of baby to the tiny person she is today! In this year we've seen snippets of the person she will become shining through. She is clever (opening gates on her own), persistent (it doesn't matter how many times you hide the cell phone, SHE WILL FIND IT), and hates the word "NO." She is also loving (always kissing the babies in her books), curious and delighted by the world around her (she just loves to sit outside and laugh!) 

I keep trying to pinpoint best moments and worst moments of the year, and I just can't. There are so many to choose from. This year has been an amazing journey, and it's just beginning...

It's Birthday Season! 1st birthday party of the year: Madeline (only 5 days older than Lorelei!)
In the ball pit!
Climbing up the slide is almost as fun as going down!
Birthday Girl!
Ronen is always the life of the party!
Lorelei is digging this rocking horse!
Raise your hand if you've seen this look on Auntie Toff's face!
Happy Hollow is the Place to Be!

Goats. We dig them!
Buddy Danica
Lorelei and Danica, chatting in the sand pit
First big girl ride: the carousel!
Carousels are fun (when they aren't moving!)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

51 Weeks!

Favorite food: blueberries are ALWAYS a favorite! Also, we are loving applesauce in the pouch (a win for mama!)
Favorite spot: In the kitchen 
Naughtiest moment: Playing with the drawers and squashing her little fingers in the door!
Cutest moment: Kissing the babies in her books
Important milestones: First sign ("more")! She stood on her own for 5 seconds!
How Mom's Feeling: Good. Busy. We've got some house stuff in the works (not gonna talk about it, in case I jinx it!) but needless to say, my hands have been full this week! When things weren't being crazy at home, Lorelei and I have gone to the park a few times, which was fun. Cold, but fun!

Lorelei also had her worst case of diaper rash to date. So, following advice, I stripped her of her diaper, rolled up the rugs and pulled out the mop. Baby girl went diaperless for most of the weekend! She also took long daily baths and no creams or wipes (unless she pooped, of course). And we eliminated clementines from her diet (the most likely culprit--new and acidic). By Wednesday morning, the rash was gone. Yay!

Some pics of our week:
French toast and berries!
Excited at the park!
Checking her messages!

Cups are good for sand!

Sleeping with her favorite blankie (love those little toesies sticking out!)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

50 Weeks

Weight: 20.8 pounds
Favorite food: berries, for sure!
Favorite spot: Anyplace she can make a mess!
Naughtiest moment: Tossing all my mommy's books off the bookshelf and onto the floor.
Cutest moment: Playing with her buddy Grady!
Important milestones: She's working really hard to stand on her own.
How Mom's Feeling: Good. We were able to enjoy my last week of break at home. We went on a trip to Folsom to visit our friends Sandi and Grady, visited with Grandmama and went to the Discovery Museum!

What really astounds me this week is how much Lorelei is learning! She has started refusing to let me put anything in her hair: clips, ponytails, whatever. Instead, she pulls everything out of her hair, then tries to *brush* her hair with her clip! She also tries to feed Brian at dinner. I've even given up the fight with the cell phone (although I need to find an otter box that will work with my phone). It only took her a day to figure out how to play her favorite little game (one that allows her to tap a shape and it will change color and say the color and the shape)! 

Playdate with Grady

The slide was THE BEST!

To the Discovery Museum!
This ball thing was awesome!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

49 Weeks

Favorite food: This week, little girl is digging grapes and Auntie Mel's mashed celeriac-potatoes (made with chevre. Lorelei is fancy like that!)
Favorite spot: Crawling on the floor, tossing her books out on the floor
Naughtiest moment: Emptying all baskets/drawers of their contents that she can reach, breaching EVERY GATE IN THE HOUSE!
Cutest moment: Just getting into everything!
Important milestones: She's getting so independent!
How Mom's Feeling: Honestly? I'm pretty exhausted. It's annoying, since I'm so happy to be home with Lorelei this week. But it's hard, since I've got this cold lingering on. I thought I was just about over it, and then I started coughing on New Year's Eve :(

Lorelei, on the other hand, is pretty much over her cold, thank god. She's still coughing a bit, but she's a trooper. We've had a fun week, either going out or staying home and doing some fun activities. This week, we've made forts out of cardboard boxes, gone to the Palo Alto Junior Museum, visited with friends, painted with colored whipped cream, and visited the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Wow. Having written that, we did a lot this week!

Lorelei is definitely all over the place. She's a sneaky monkey and has figured out how to bypass the gates we have put up to corral her (and the dogs). Her new favorite game is to empty EVERYTHING out of whatever container it may be in. And steal any sort of remote/cell phone/technology she can get her grubby little hands on! She's definitely keeping me on my toes!

Cuddling with her Poppy
Whipped Cream Painting: Before
Whipped Cream Painting: During
Whipped Cream Painting: After
Palo Alto Junior Museum, checking herself out in the mirror!
At the park after the museum. The swings were a bit much, but she was digging her cool ride!
First visit to Grandpa Dan's boat
Amazed by the tide pool!
She loved holding the starfish!
Fish buddies!
Chilling in her clubhouse!
Hipster baby ironically shopping at Babies R Us.
Lorelei's Official Christmas Photo!