December 29, 2008

Christmas Photos


Here are a bunch of photos from over Christmas. Penelope had a fantastic time, but two things happened right before that really helped: 1) she learned to sit up on her own, and 2) she started really eating solid food. Sitting up allowed her to hang out in the middle of everything and look around smiling at everyone. Solid food seemed to just fill her up, and judging by how much she is shoveling in, she must have been pretty hungry. We had been trying to feed her solids for quite a few weeks now, but she never really took to it until just last week, almost overnight. The instructor in one of our parenting classes said that you know its time to start feeding a baby solid food when they can sit up on their own. I kind of shrugged this off since, how can those things really be related? But then, sure enough, those two things came together at the exact same time! Freaky!

December 27, 2008

Merry Christmas!

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Penelope thoroughly enjoyed her first Christmas and soaked up every last bit of the excitement. More pictures to come...

December 20, 2008

The baptism that very nearly didnt happen

We had been planning Penelope's baptism for months now (the church had limited spots and a long waiting list). We printed cute little invitations, planned the menu, and ordered food and a cake. We had a few people flying in from out of town for the baptism which was taking place last Sunday. On Thursday morning before, I wake up feeling nauseous. By that evening I had a high fever and was shivering under the covers wearing sweatpants, wool socks, a turtleneck, and thick wool sweater. Just as my fever broke I hear Dave moaning in the bathroom with severe vomiting (somehow I never actually vomited through this). By the next morning, both of his parents have come down with it. We got on the phone and told everybody else to stay home, expecting Penelope to come down with it at any time. My Mom came out anyway to help and keep her away from us for the off-chance that she wouldn't get it. Somehow, amazingly, Penelope never got it. My Mom got it! Poor thing, flew all the way out here to help only to spend most of the time in bed. But Penelope never did. We had her baptized, as planned. We canceled the party, but she looked wonderful in the family baptismal dress sent over from my Aunt Kristin. The only word I can think to describe this is a miracle. Ive never been a terribly religious person, but something like this really makes me question that.

December 03, 2008

Month Five

Dear Penelope,

Today you turn five months old. There wasn’t any big new development this month, but you worked hard improving your standard repertoire. For instance, now when I lay you on your back you have flipped over to your tummy before I pull my hands away. I take you once a week to a “Mommy and Me” play class called Gymboree with other babies your age. When it comes time to put you on your tummies all the other babies moan and whine and complain, but not you. You spend the whole class on your tummy reaching out to whoever you can, Id swear you’ll be crawling across the room in no time. Here you are under the Christmas tree watching the train. You love that train, your hands quiver with excitement each time it comes around.

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I broke down and got you an exersaucer, and the worst part is that I think you are already bored of it. I try not to overdo it, reserving it for emergency situations like dinner and, well, all the other meals. But even then you only last a couple of minutes before calling someone over to talk to you. You love attention, you’ll fuss and shriek and then stop to turn and look at me to see if Im watching you. I swear your father does that exact same thing. One thing I haven’t mentioned here yet is how, from even your earliest days home from the hospital, you pee as soon as we take off your diaper. This honestly happens at least once a day, sometimes every time we change you. We used to have a pretty little cover on your changing pad, but now we just leave it bare plastic, since we never seem to time it so there is a diaper underneath you when it happens. Im hoping this will make potty training a bit easier? There has got to be some benefit to this.

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The most exciting thing this month was a trip to Bermuda! The weather was perfect and we took you to the beach. You did surprisingly well sleeping in new places, except of course for the airplane. You are completely over your newborn quality of sleeping the entire flight. Instead, you prefer to wiggle, arch your back, and try to find anything within arms reach to entertain yourself. Bermuda was great though, we somehow managed to not get a single picture of us having forgotten our camera. The best part of the trip is that we tricked you into thinking you were still in Texas so you slept until 10am every morning!

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After five months I have come to the conclusion that you are not a sleeper. You need sleep, certainly, and quite a bit too, but you just absolutely hate to do it. You wake up at every opportunity, and resist sleep with every particle of your being. Its still quite typical for you to wake up at the 45 minute mark for most naps, sometimes you talk to yourself for only a couple minutes before drifting back off again (often for several hours) or sometimes you scream bloody murder before you drift off again. Rarely will I give up and go to you because I know you need the sleep, and the more I go to you the less likely you will learn to sleep on your own and get the sleep you need. These sleep battles are the hardest thing Ive experienced as your parent. Sure, the first couple weeks with you I was walking around in a fog, but that stuff went away and never came back. The sleep battles continue and don’t seem to go away, and I fear are something we will be working on for maybe years to come.

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Overall this was a pretty good month. You have been to a ton of parties, several wedding events in Bermuda, then Thanksgiving, and Holden’s baptism. Night after night of parties with you, when everyone is ohhing and ahhing over how cute you are, the one thought that always goes through my mind is how lucky I am to be the one that gets to go home with you. I get to keep you, and squeeze you and blow kissies on your neck. I get to go into your room in the morning and see the look of pure joy on your face when you see me.

I love you, baby girl.


Love,
Mama