Monday, December 12, 2011

20 months old

So this weekend Anna turned 20 months old and in that, became my longest nurser AND nursed for the last time.

Not a decision I came by lightly, but after months of pain from nursing, I decided it was time to wean. We had already been down to just nursing before bed if I was doing bedtime. During her recent stomach bug, I was grateful to be able to nurse her still, but I paid all evening with shooting pains. The medication I took for the nursing induced Reynauds symptoms made me feel awful.

On the weekend I shortened our nursing. Last night I went for a drive while daddy put her to bed. Tonight we had cuddles and songs on the couch and I told her "Num Nums were all gone", before daddy took her to bed. I'll miss her excitement to nurse, but I can't say I'll miss the little fingers pinching me and tantrums when I say 'all done'.

So onto more exciting news...

Anna is saying more and more words now. It's so exciting to get a new word almost daily! She's especially fond of the B words. I'm sure I'm missing some, but here are the ones she says consistently...
Hi, Mama, Dada, Juice, eat, duck, bubbles, elmo, bath, baby, banana, boots, hot, "ho ho ho", as well as her versions of her siblings names.

The signing time series are a huge hit and while she was home sick, they were on constant replay. She'll bring the remote (or grab my laptop even) and sign "Baby". I'd love to be able to buy them, but they're very pricey, so we sign them out from the library. She now signs...
More, eat, Milk, Cat, Baby, again, please, thank-you, hat, napkin, all done.

She's very particular about her clothing and I need to offer her choices now. Her appetite is very good, although, she's picky about meat and veggies. She will not eat chicken and the only veggies she'll eat are raw red pepper and cucumber. Still, I offer though and put everything we're eating on her plate.

I love, love, love this age, irrational tantrums and all!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Long past due

Well, it's been way too long since I've blogged.

Today, my firstborn daughter turns 13. What a lucky mom I am to have such wonderful children.

My youngest daughter? Well, she's turning into quite the toddler. Almost 19 mos and so much fun. She adores her older siblings and loves to play with them. Not a lot of language still, but she's trying. A few words and a few signs. She certainly knows how to communicate what she wants in her own ways. 22 lbs and not super tall. Wearing 24 month clothes with lots of room to grow.

I started a new job closer to home in September. It's a year posting and I'm enjoying it a lot.

Well, maybe this will kickstart me back to blogging again. There's not enough hours in the day!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Life gets in the way

Going back to work full time hasn't been conducive to blogging.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Big Changes

I returned to my job last week. Going back to work outside the home wasn't something that was definately in the plans during my maternity leave, but the safety net was there, just in case. We are fortunate to have found great child care we trust and so far Anna has adjusted beautifully. It was a wonderful 16 months at home I had, but I do admit that it was getting a touch lonely with my other mommy friends returning to work.

Since starting care last week has Anna graduated from being a few steps here and there walker, to a fully fledged toddler who is walking about 90% of the time. Hubby and I thought this day would never come and it's so exciting to see her toddle around. I'm sure the first scraped knees/hands/face will be traumatic but for now she's fairly cautious. A bonus to her taking nearly 2 months to primarly walk, is that her balance is excellent.

I was quite worried about her napping away from me, since she's always napped in the car or via nursing. But her sitter, J, takes her for a walk in the stroller and she conks out for 2 1/2 hours in the afternoon. I was also worried about her reverse cycling and wanting to nurse all night to make up for me being away but she's good with nursing in the morning and a couple times in the evening during the week.

I worry about how her naps will transition once she's at a new daycare this fall, but I'm sure we'll figure that out, with hopefully not too many tears. Weaning has been at the back of my mind when I think about how tied Anna is to me when it comes to the majority of her sleep, but I don't believe that weaning her just for that reason is fair. It's something we both enjoy.

Monday, June 13, 2011

My firstborns


This past weekend we celebrated my son turning 11. 11? How is that possible already? I'm really starting to see a shift from little boy to teenager. But, I'm also happy to see him hold on to being young at heart. He has a playful soul, but is a sensitive one. He and I got to go to see X Men: First Class together. It was nice having one on one time without his sisters.

The next morning I took my oldest girl out for breakfast for our own little solo date. She's always been an old soul and is more like me than I like to admit, some days. She's serious and mature, but sly and a silly trickster who delights in tormenting her next younger brother.

My joys.

Getting closer to being a toddler!

Over this past weekend Anna increased her steps. She's up to 6 in a row now! She still won't stand up and walk on her own free will, but will stand on her own then walk with encouragement. It feels strange to look over and see her just standing there, not holding onto anything.

Even without walking, Anna has had 2 owies in 2 weeks. Last week she dove off the couch face first and got a goose egg and today she fell, using her walker and cut her upper lip frenulum.

Another neat development is more head shaking and bringing us books to read to her. She also didn't nap 3 days in a row (and went to bed easy), but lalalalalaala I refuse to acknowledge that this is a new trend. Hopefully it's just this recent cold and chest congestion that causing this.

She is still a super snuggly, fairly easygoing baby who loves attention from her siblings. She'll even shun mama and dada in favour of them.

For some reason the sound is muted on this video, but you get to see her most steps yet.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Developmental leaps and bounds.

Since turning 13 months Anna has been having big leaps in development.

In addition to mama and dada, she now says Hi and Bye as well as does an open and close hand wave. She also claps consistently and raises her arms in the air when we say "yay".

On may 25 she took her first 2 steps towards me. Since this past weekend she also gotten up from the floor and stood 3 times.

She rarely wakes more than once a night and often sleeps through until 5:30. Has a 2 hr afternoon nap most days.

She vrooms her cars around on the floor, making the noise. Her favourite activity is probably moving items from one location to another. Imagine how much more fun this will be for her once she can walk and carry things. I am finding bath toys in random drawers and plastic bowls in the pot drawer as well as treasures stashed on the windowsill behind the couch.

When the Phone rings she says "dada" since she's spoken to daddy on the phone a few times.

I love this age! Oh and did I mention she's a total snuggler now too! Love it.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Anna turns 1

Anna turns 1 by sew_crafty_girl75
Anna turns 1, a photo by sew_crafty_girl75 on Flickr.

The 2nd year

Well, I didn't make it back here to post about Anna's birthday and now she's 13 months old! It was a fun, tiring weekend as we celebrated her birthday twice. Once with adult friends and family, then with our baby and mommy friends.

Her ducky cake was awesome. The cupcakes for the baby party were fun too. We just discovered the ease of icing cupcakes with a large decorator tip and I'll never use a knife again! Anna dove right in to her cupcake after delicately sampling her ducky cake at the first party.

The highlight of the parties was Anna's new friend, Clothes Hanger. She would not let go of it once she opened gifts of clothes. I can't even take her into a clothing store now without her going nuts for the hangers. Weird kid.

We're not walking yet or even standing alone very much, but I know we'll get there. She loves going up the stairs, so we've got gates up now. Next task will be baby proofing any cupboards and drawers. The low ones are fairly safe, but once she's standing independently there will be things I won't want her getting into.

Teeth count is at 7. Only one more to go before molars. Weight was nearly 19 pounds at her 1 yr appt.

She has a great appetite and likes milk as well. Any spit ups that yogurt gave her around 9 months have been gone since about 11 months.

Sleep is pretty good. Bed around 8:30-9 and most nights she sleeps through until 5:30 which would suck if I weren't already waking up to drive Daddy to the train anyways. A 2 hr nap around lunch to 2.

Well, time to wrap up and head to Strong Start with Anna. It's a great free program, similar to preschool. It's sure interesting seeing Anna interact with kids now that she's getting older. She's a bit aggressive, this one. I hope it won't stay this way!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

On the eve before the last first birthday....

These milestones are bittersweet with the last baby in the family.

While I love experiencing all these new "firsts" again, I'm also checking off a list of "lasts".

Never again will I carry a baby in my womb again. Nor will I hear those first cries, see that first smile, tickle that first laugh or antcipate those first steps.

Ah, but I have a lifetime with my lastborn to look forward to. But I can wait. No rushing, my sweet Anna.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

This time last year

I was 38 weeks pregnant and getting pretty antsy to give birth, as it was the OH MY GOSH, the LONGEST I had ever been pregnant and couldn't believe it. I had been off work a couple weeks and just laying around, waiting to pop. My plug had come out a few days prior which got my hopes up that labour was iminment, but no, it would still be 9 more days before Anna made her appearance. Every day/night I would slip on my Crocs and haul my aching body out for a walk around the neighbourhood and diligently drink my Red Raspberry Leaf tea with some pineapple and Evening Primrose capsules thrown in for good measure.

My, how far we have come...



I have to laugh just a little when she does this as I know I won't find it quite so funny soon.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Baby days are fleeting

So Anna is 11 months old now and the countdown to the end of her "baby days" is on. It's hard to look at her and remember that wee baby who would sit there and fuss to be picked up. She's a scooting (yup, still doesn't crawl traditionally), playful, willful girl.

She likes to play independently, but loves to be climbing all over us like her personal jungle gyms. When Daddy gets home from work, he doesn't dare walk into the house without picking her up quickly. She sits on the floor and bounces on her bottom, flapping her arms excitedly.

Language wise, we still mostly hear Mama. She has said Daddy and her newest one is "Ah Ah" which sounds like "Uh Oh" when someone drops something. I can't wait to hear what else she has to say.

She is my smallest baby yet, at 17 lbs 7 oz and wears 18 month shirts and 12 month pants.

Tooth #5 (top lateral incisor) is partway out and I can see #6 under the gums on the other side.

We've seen huge improvements with sleep and most nights she's up once or twice. Her best night yet was 8:30-5:00. She naps from 12:00-2:00.

The biggest frustration I'm dealing with is her newfound willfullness. She mostly refuses to sit on the potty so I'm having to come up with creative ways to capture her attention so she sits. I'm hoping this is just a brief 'pause' as I'm not thrilled to fight her over poopy diaper changes. It was so easy when I was catching most of her poops on the toilet. She's also stiffening up when it's time to get into her carseat.

Some of her favorite things are Daddy's ipod touch, oatmeal, her brothers and sisters, num-nums (breastmilk) and kisses. She gives the sweetest kisses, although I don't trust ones on the cheek as she bit me hard enough to bruise the other day!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Birthday sewing

I've been having the sewing bug for a while now. Other than a simple fleece hat and pants, I haven't done a lot of sewing lately. I have a bunch of cute fabric, but no toddler sized patterns. I'm very much a pattern oriented sewer. If I don't have something in front of me to trace, I can't wrap my head around it.

Last night I pulled out Angry Chicken's book Bend the Rules Sewing and whipped up the Sweet Wee Jacket. I was very simple to sew and I'm already looking forward to making a bunch of variations for Anna. Since I hadn't blown up the pattern from the book, I took an old cardigan of hers, folded it in half and just traced around it bigger.

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I've also wanted to make a birthday outfit and lo and behold, while surfing the net this morning I came across Made By Rae and her awesome patternm Itty Bitty Baby Dress. So, while Anna napped today, her birthday dress was sewn. I didn't have any piping, so I skipped that detail. The bodice is lined with the same fabric as the outside and the butterfly is cut out of the fabric and ironed on. The tattoo fabric is Alexander Henry.

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These projects have fired up a desire to do more sewing. It's just hard to get everything planned out and done while Anna sleeps. Now, if only Fabricland would come back to my city and I didn't have to travel to shop. I guess that does keep the impulse spending down though!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Mischief Maker

Exploring by sew_crafty_girl75
Exploring a photo by sew_crafty_girl75 on Flickr.
Anna is getting more and more aware of the world around here and discovering that there are hidden areas that have enticing treasures. She's found all the low drawers that are accesible to her. We've had pinched fingers a few times. I love to watch her take things out and put things in and open and close the drawers. So far there is only the 2 drawers in this picture that are forbidden areas. One has all our candles and candle holders, the other has our good silver and carving knives. God help us once she can figure out how to open cabinets. See the Val d'Or china in that cupboard?

While she's not climbing yet, she whines to get up on the couch then proceeds to lunge towards all contraban (remotes, cell phones), climb up the back to the blinds and do atomic bum drops onto whoever she's sitting with. Sharing the couch with her certainly isn't a relaxing time.

We're on the tail end of her having her first major illness. At the beginning of the week the mild congestion she's had for weeks turned into fever, bad congestions and cough. The fever stuck around for 3 days and the doctor determined it was most likely viral. With all the germs flying around, most of us managed to get sick as well.

Tooth 5 keeps going up and down. I think it may fave finally broken through for good.

For the most part, Anna is happiest sticking close to one of us, so her exploring isn't too exhausting yet. My scrap room has quite a bit of stuff for her to get into.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Sleep


Sleep. It's a common theme among my mommy friends right now. Our babies are getting older. Shouldn't they be sleeping in their own crib? Putting themselves to sleep? Napping once or twice a day? Ay yi yi.

I can tell you that I'm getting tired of being Anna's sleep aid. Sure, in the early days it was SO EASY to just pop her onto the boob and off to dreamland she went. Now it's frustrating to wrestle with her as she pops on and off and on and off before she decides she's ready to settle down and sleep. Only mommy can put her to bed. Only mommy will do in the middle of the night. I fantasize about the time in the future when daddy puts her to bed.

We don't have a long, drawn out bedtime routine. We go upstairs around 8. Turn down the lights, get into jammies and snuggle in the chair and nurse. Only, she usually isn't ready to settle down and wants to get down and play for a bit, then comes back to me for 'num nums' and goes to sleep fairly fast. I've tried stories in the past, but she's pretty grabby and impatient with that still so I'll try again when she's older. I lay her down in the crib and lately she's asleep for 3-5 hours.

It's after this first waking that I'm trying to go to her room, nurse her back to sleep and put her back into the crib. This is what she often fights. She springs back awake as soon as I lay her down. I've tried quite a few times out of exhaustion and frustration to let her cry it out. Last night, after her first waking at 1:30, she did this. I let her cry and fuss, going back in every few minutes, stretching out to 15 minutes, to lay her down, soothe her, nurse her once more, change a poop, and eventually, after 2 hours, she stayed laying down as I rubbed her belly, then quietly snuck out as she gave in to sleep for a few more hours.

My goal is to start breaking the nurse/sleep association in order to help her start soothing herself to sleep.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

10 months old!


Since we last left off, Anna got two more teeth! Teething started just as I got the flu. Fun times.

Other new skills? Pulling to stand just a bit more. Saying dah-ee.

Sleep has gotten a lot better! She's now going 5-7 hour stretches in her crib quite often. But, just as we think it's going good, she reverts and won't go to sleep in her crib. The improvement is promising though. I look forward to when she can self-soothe and doesn't always need to nurse to sleep.

Food wise, she really likes solids, nurses lots, drinks from a sippy and straw. She has been a bit picky the past few days so I'm hoping it's just from teething. Egg is one food she consistently won't eat, except for that one time she loved daddy's cheesy scrambled eggs. We do a bit of self feeding and spoon feeding and for the most part she just eats what we eat.

She's wearing 9-12 month clothing. Still under 17 pounds at last weight check.

Probably my biggest frustration right now is her newfound fear of the bath after a face plant in the water.

The time to plan her birthday is quickly approaching. I can't believe it!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Recent projects

Well, it's been far too long since I've posted any sewing to live up to my sewcraftygirl moniker. It's not for lack of projects, I just forget to post them!

A few years ago, on Craftster.org, I came across a fabulous idea of felt baby name books. There certainly hasn't been a shortage of babies in my life, so it has become one of my go-to projects for new babies and 1 yr olds in my life., provided I have lots of advance warning, because they are time consuming! In the past few months I've made 3 with several more in the works. Here are a couple samples shots. There are several more on my flickr page, if you click the photos.

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Since Anna has been born, I've made her a pair of pants (from a pattern) and a dress I traced off another dress. A tutu. 2 mooshy bunnies and several grasping balls for her and her friends.

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I love being able to handcraft items for my friends and family. It's certainly trickier now that Anna is here, but it just means projects are broken up into several small tasks, over days, rather than a full day, sequestered away in my craft room.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Almost 9 months!

On Tuesday Anna will be out as long as she was in! I'm really enjoying how interactive she's starting to get now. She's such a goofy girl.

New things she's doing are:
- leaning in to kiss, but it's more like a suck which might eventually be a bite.
- gesturing at things. Not quite pointing, but waving her arm at things she is interested in.
- waving! although she's only done this once, with purpose.
- almost crawling the traditional way.
- happy chatter.
- recognizing her food source (mom) and seeking it out.
- scooting over to me and pulling on my pant leg when she wants up.
- occasionally says "momomom"
- trying to pull up on things and getting to her knees.

Last week I brought her to the doctor for the first time, for an illness. She was a bit warm, off her food, cranky and developed a mild, spotty rash all over her body. Since hand, foot and mouth had visited M in November, I didn't want to risk assuming the rash was nothing. The doctor figured it was benign and probably a non-specific viral rash. Since the visit she's back to herself with just a couple bouts of diarrhea.

The doctor we saw at the walk in clinic just happened to be the same doc I saw in the ER after my last miscarriage and I told her so. She shared her story of loss with me and commented how the baby that did eventually make it was an awesome girl and just right for them. I believe that to be true of Anna. God blessed me with the baby I was meant to have.