Saturday, January 31, 2009

Horsing Around

Sadie is like a little sponge that absorbs all the information around her.  She has figured out that"up" means to put her arms up because she's going to be picked up and to quickly scan the room if someone says "kitty" because one of her favorite playmates has probably entered the room.  She has known names like "Puddy," "Mommy," and "Daddy" for a while (I honestly believe that "Puddy" is probably the name that is first and foremost in her little head), but now she seems to be recognizing actual words.  

She is also more determined than ever to stay awake from 6:30 in the morning until 7:30 at night.  She doesn't believe me when I say that babies need to take naps.  She secretly believes that we have wild parties the minute that she closes her eyes, eating rice cereal with bananas (her favorite food) and apple juice and milk.  Lately the only way to get her to go down for a nap, for any length of time anyway, has involved putting her in her stroller and going on a walk.  She usually stays awake for the first mile, before closing her eyes and drifting off to sleep.  

She wakes up the second that I stop walking, which is why I've been walking so much lately.  Today we only walked three miles, but I've been averaging five to six miles a day!  Sadie's new stubborn refusal to go down for a nap may be what I need to keep my new years resolution.  

Grumpa helped me put Sadie's Crawl and Cruise Musical Jungle together today (it would have been really hard to assemble on my own!).  She was hilarious.  She rolled across the room so that she was positioned next to Grumpa's feet and then she tried to wedge her body underneath the pieces of the jungle so that she could see what he was doing (he was screwing the pieces together with an electric drill).  With Sadie's help we got it pieced together and she was motivated to sit up to play with the monkey who drops the ball down the ramp (she can sit up pretty well, but she's so into rolling that the moment I put her down in a sitting position she lunges forward and starts to roll across the room.).  

After playing with the Jungle we went outside to watch Grumpa work with the horses.  Sammy was first and Sadie's eyes were like saucers when he bucked and kicked and got his wiggles out, after not being handled all winter.  Grumpa worked with Black next and before Black went back to his stall he came over and sniffed Sadie (including her diaper).  Sadie was a little bit braver at this point and reached her hand out and touched the velvet on Black's nose!  We watched him work with Starr, before going on our last walk and heading back to the house for dinner. 

It's been another busy day and tomorrow is Sadie's first Super Bowl!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Ducks, Foxes and Porcupines: Adventures in Nor Cal

We had a breakthrough tonight at bath time.  I'd like to say that I knew that this day would come, but I have to admit that I was secretly afraid that Sadie's stubbornness would persist and that she would, after having decided that she hated books at the ripe old age of five months, go on hating books for the rest of her life (all because they aren't edible).  

Tonight all of the rubber ducks jumped into the tub with Sadie and I started to read Goodnight Boston to her.  She didn't look away!  After the first page she got a little smile on her face.  When we got to the part about the Make Way for Ducklings statue she started to get a little distracted, so I quacked like a duck.  Apparently this was the funniest thing that had happened all day (and we had a big day) and she looked at the book again.  

I knew what I had to do.  Whenever she got bored with a story, I would quack and she would look at the book and start to smile.  Any book with quacking in it has to be funny!

We made it through two entire stories!  That's a record!

Before we had tons of fun with the ducks in the tub, we went to Redding this morning for my doctor's appointment.  It was a beautiful day and the car thermometer said that it was seventy-five degrees when we headed home.  Nani came along since Paul is back at school, and sat with Sadie in the waiting room.  She was shocked when, after about fifteen minutes, I was ready to go.  The reason for the quick turn around time?  

When the nurse took me back into the exam room and took my blood pressure it was 90 over 58.  Apparently she thought that I was about to keel over, right there in the exam room, although I told her I was fine.  Within two minutes the doctor was in the room, listening to my heart (she agreed that nothing was wrong.  I just have very low blood pressure) and ten minutes later we were ready to go.  I've never been in and out of any doctor's office that fast.  

After finishing up all of our chores in Redding we stopped by Turtle Bay to play in the park before we started the long trek home.  Sadie saw a fox (you can barely see him in the first picture because of the glare on the glass... I think that she thought he was a cat.), an owl, a porcupine (he actually seemed to be her favorite) and a magpie.  

We went from the animals, to the playground where Sadie got to go on the swings (it was her first time on real swings!).  She insisted on sitting all the way forward, so that she was almost tipping over.  When we tried to show her how to sit back and hold on to the swing, she would glare and throw her weight forward again so that she could watch the ground.  

Swinging was fun, but I think that she had more fun watching Mommy and Grumpa swing, while she sat in her swing with Nani.  
From the playground we went back inside and looked at the fish.  You walk through a little tunnel that's dimly lit to get to the aquarium and Sadie's eyes were like saucers by the time we were through it.  She loved watching the fish and while I held her she pointed her little finger to make sure that we saw them too.  

To top off our big day Sadie started chicken today!  I can't say that it was a hit, although she ate every bite.  After each bite she would make a disgusted face and gag, before opening her mouth for more.  

Now it's time to call Daddy and go to bed.  We've gotten used to Daddy being home on weekends, after his long winter break.  I can't wait until summer break!  

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Sadie's Stubborn Streak

Sadie is stubborn on most days and today was, for some reason unbeknownst to the rest of us, a particularly stubborn day.  It was also a fussy day, but I don't think these two facts were unrelated.  

The day started out with Sadie refusing to take her nap.  She does this periodically, usually after deciding that everything that is going on around her is more interesting than falling asleep on Mommy's chest and having sweet little bunny dreams.  At eleven o'clock I loaded her up in her stroller and started to walk.  She fell asleep by the end of the first mile.  An hour an a half later I decided that she had slept long enough and went back inside, hoping that her mood would have improved (by the way, I walked over six miles today, so Sadie's fussiness is helping me along with my new years resolution).  

After the walk Sadie was her usual cheerful self, smiling and giggling and wrestling with Kitty (the stuffed cat).  There was also an incident where Sammy (the tortoise shell cat) got a little bit too close to the baby and Sadie almost taught herself how to crawl so that she could chase after Sammy when the cat corrected her mistake and inched farther and farther away.  It started with Sadie grabbing her tail (which Sammy tolerated remarkably well) and ended with Sadie grabbing a giant handful of fur and Sammy twisting around and running out of the room.  

Before long it was time for Sadie's afternoon nap, but for a second time in twenty-four hours she just wasn't interested in going to sleep.  After about an hour and a half of "singing" (the little baby whining sound that she makes when she's tired), she finally passed out and slept for a little over an hour.  Even after the nap and dinner she was still fussy until bath time.  

Bath time was the second time that we had an example of Sadie's stubborn streak.  When Sadie got in her tub she reached up and picked out her favorite rubber duck out of a line of rubber duck.  It never ceases to amaze me that she can tell them apart and repeatedly picks her duck out, whether they're in the water or on the wall.  Lately we've added a bath time story as a part of the routine, because Sadie gets so frustrated when I read to her.  I thought she might be less likely to try to grab the book and try to shove it in her mouth when she was surrounded by her precious ducks.  

While we have made some progress (she didn't try to rip the book out of my hands and deconstruct it), we still have a ways to go.  Our nightly reading routine goes something like this:  Sadie looks up, sees the book and then, very pointedly, looks away.  While I'm reading she will look at her ducks, or at the side of the bath tub, or down at the water, but she absolutely refuses to look at the book (or the reader of the book!).  As soon as I stop reading, she looks up and smiles.  Apparently this is hilarious.  Today I did extra crazy voices and she actually glanced at the page three or four times.  Baby steps!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

My New Years Resolution

Here is a pregnancy picture.

Later this week I have my six-month post baby check up.  This knowledge has renewed my already fading New Years Resolution to lose the baby weight.  Part of this motivation comes from the fact that I don't actually know what I weigh right now, because the scale upstairs is evil.  It's a digital scale that's supposed to be accurate (as if there are scales that are supposed to be inaccurate), and last month when I stepped on it, it jumped to 194 lbs.  I knew that the scale was wrong (really, really wrong...  After gaining forty-two pounds with Sadie I topped out at 168 lbs) but it still isn't what I wanted to see!  That isn't the worst of it though.  The other day when I climbed on it to check my weight it said 129 (3 lbs from my pre-pregnancy weight) and I almost started jumping up and down.  

Then I remembered.  The scale is evil.  

So I checked again and the scale, while chuckling to itself, gave me what I think is my real weight.  We'll know for sure on Friday though, when I wear the lightest outfit I can find, despite the cold weather and get my Official Weight from the Doctor's scale.  

Sadie Update:  Sadie had a big day.  We walked five and a half miles, looked for bald eagles (there have been three bald eagle sightings here in the past two days), worked on crawling (or on finding ways to move without crawling) and went to Round Table for pizza.  Nothing could compare to what happened at Round Table.  One of the ladies that works there saw Sadie and brought her a big red balloon.  Sadie was ecstatic.  It was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen (even the cathedral this weekend with it's domed ceiling couldn't compete).  She sat and stared at the balloon at the restaurant, in the car on the way home and then in the kitchen once we got in the house.  I finally had to hide the balloon in the dining room to get her to go to sleep.  After a solid half hour of playing with her rubber ducks in the bath tub she was exhausted and with the red balloon safely out of sight she is finally asleep, resting up for another exciting day.  

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Few of My Favorite Things: Part 1

We spent our second night since Sadie was born in the cabin last night and it stayed warm, despite the fact that it got down to 18 degrees outside.  I feel that staying in the cabin can be described as "roughing it" because there's no running water, but Paul says that nothing that involves sleeping in a king sized bed can really be called roughing it.  When we woke up and ran up to the house the ground was frozen solid and the dirt crunched loudly under my sneakers as Sadie did her best to throw her flannel bunny blanket off of her arms.  

On a completely different topic... A few of my friends are having babies right now and today I started thinking about the things that we ended up trying that really helped out after Sadie was born.  Most pregnant moms have probably seen those lists that they have in magazines and books that tell them what they need to get before they bring their little bundle of joy home from the hospital, and this isn't that kind of a list.  This is a List of My Favorite Baby Things (in no particular order, I wrote them down as they popped into my head):

-Halo Sleep Sacks- Halo Sleep Sacks are pajamas that are aptly described by their name.  They are basically a sack with no sleeves and a zipper that zips down so that the baby can't mess with it (and says Back is Best just in case you forget... if that's even possible with all the press about back sleeping reducing SIDS).  I still worried in the beginning that Sadie would somehow pull the sleep sack over her face (remember I'm a Worrier) but finally realized that they really are designed well and that it wasn't going to happen.   

-The Floppy-  If you don't know what a Floppy is, it's the liner that goes inside a shopping cart/high chair and keeps the baby from licking/tasting/touching the shopping cart/high chair and being exposed to salmonella/ecoli.  It also had a little strap that wraps around the cart/high chair and keeps the baby from falling out and a little strip of material that the babies toys can be attached to (unless your baby, like Sadie, becomes obsessed with removing her toys from the strap so that she can throw them on the floor and watch Mommy bend over to pick them up).  

-Brilliant Bows- http://www.brilliantbows.com -The Bows from Brilliant Bows aren't just cute, they actually stay on your babies head.  Even when the baby hardly has any hair to speak of.  Sadie started out with "quite a bit of hair", which turned into "some hair", which was rubbed off until she looked like a little old man with a mohawk on top and a horseshoe of dark hair around the back of her head.  Even when she was wearing a dress, people would ask if she was a boy ("no, she's a baby and babies don't have a lot of hair!").  These bows help with that and look super cute!  And there are different bows for different occasions (you may even be able to convince your husband that buying bows are a good idea if you show him the sports bows, complete with your teams colors and a little baseball or football).  

-Burt's Bees Buttermilk Baby Lotion- Sadie has super sensitive baby skin.  If I knit with wool and pick the baby up without washing my hands she breaks out in hives.  When I tried the typical baby lotions (petroleum based) her skin would get rough and dry.  Even if I put the lotion on ten times a day with every single diaper change.  The Buttermilk Baby Lotion was a lifesaver because after about a month of using it her skin stopped feeling rough and started feeling soft.  Although I have to be careful because it smells so good that Sadie does her best to get the lotion into her mouth when I'm putting it on her face.  

-Nuby Sippie Cups- The tops of Nuby Sippie Cups are soft, more like a bottle than a sippie cup, but they still don't spill, even if the baby repeatedly turns the cup upside down and shakes it to see if she can get any of the juice out.  

-The Fischer Price Little People Barn- Because watching Sadie try to get inside of it so she can play with her little people figurines is absolutely priceless!

Monday, January 26, 2009

How to Avoid Crawling...

Sadie was so excited to be home yesterday.  While she had lots of play time on the motel bed (with blankets spread out all over the place so that she didn't touch the comforter) it wasn't quite the same as being on her special quilts on the floor below the wood stove with all of her toys.  When we got home and placed her on her blankets she seemed shocked to see her toys and rolled around, checking out each on and making sure that they were all still there.  

Today as I watched her playing I realized the extraordinary lengths that she is going to, to keep from having to crawl.  Because she is so proficient at rolling and changing directions while rolling, she doesn't really need to crawl to get around.  She can get from on side of the room to the other by rolling and she's pretty good at rolling over any obstacles that stand in her way.  For about two weeks she has been able to push herself up off the ground and slide backwards but she really doesn't seem to be all that motivated to actually learn how to crawl.  

While she was playing this morning, Kitty, the giant stuffed cat from Old Navy, was just out of her reach.  She would have had to turn ninety degrees in the middle of a bunch of toys to roll over to Kitty and so she tried to scoot on her stomach to grab him.  Unfortunately when Sadie is really intent on something and tries to get to it she usually starts out by acting like a baby seal and raising her little arms and legs off of the ground like an airplane.  This is usually accompanied by her little staccato cry (which was formerly the "hungry" cry but that now just means "I want it. Now.").  Amazingly, Kitty didn't jump up and run over to cuddle with Sadie.  I watched to see what she would do.

Instead of pushing herself up or trying to roll, she extended her little arms all the way in front of her and grabbed the edge of the blanket that Kitty was sitting on (which she could just barely reach).  In a huge effort she pulled the blanket towards herself, which caused Kitty to tip over backwards.  That nearly caused a meltdown (I was waiting to see if she would crawl to get Kitty, but Nani rescued Kitty and pushed him closer to Sadie, narrowly averting disaster).  However she learned an important lesson.  If she pulls the blankets around she doesn't have to move at all.  The toys come to her.  

Sadie spent the rest of playtime tugging at her blankets and squealing in delight when a toy would slowly make it's way across the floor until she could reach it.  It actually looks like a lot of work just to avoid learning to crawl!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Home Sweet Home

We are finally home!  Today was a long day of traveling and an hour and a half after we made it home Paul had to turn around and drive back into town to work.  At least in another hour he will be home!  

Sadie almost slept through the night last night (and by almost I mean she fell asleep at 8 and only woke up once!).  I still woke up three or four times to check on her and to make sure that we hadn't overslept.  

We went to Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of St Joseph in San Jose before heading home.  It felt like one of the longest hours of my life because Sadie, who is normally very good in church turned into a tiny octopus who was desperate to escape.  It began when the baby, who had hardly coughed in two days, heard me cough twice just before we walked into the church.  She laughed and copied me.  
The moment we sat down in the very quiet cathedral, she started to cough.  What started out as a little fake cough turned into a real cough when she swallowed wrong, because of the fake coughing.  After about a minute of coughing the little old man who was sitting a few rows in front of us turned around and glared.  I started to imagine that the people around us were asking themselves "what kind of mother would bring her sick baby to church?"  I suggested to Paul we that we move to the very back row and tried to jiggle Sadie even more so that coughing didn't seem like quite as much fun.

After we moved she stopped coughing and put her hands on either side of my face.  For a few seconds she stared very intently and was very still.  Then she pulled on my nose.  It was all downhill from there.  She spent several minutes trying to yank on my nose and ears while I tried to discourage her without causing a tantrum.  

Paul tried to take her several times and while she was more serious while she was sitting with Daddy, after about five minutes she would start reaching for me and the second she was back on my lap the raspberries and "cuddles" would begin.  It was like being mugged.

After Mass we met Kehli in Sunnyvale for breakfast at Denny's (the waitress recognized Sadie from yesterday and called her "my baby") which is now Sadie's favorite restaurant, probably because it always seems to be full of babies and people who are fun to watch.  Then we said a very sad goodbye to Kehli who is moving back to Montana (that's the picture at the top of the page) and headed North.  

It was another big day.  She should sleep well tonight!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Big Day in the City

Today was a busy day but it started out with a few technical difficulties.  Daddy left for school bright and early and while Sadie played on the bed I checked a few things on the computer.  I minimized my internet window to check something and stared at the screen.  I have an Apple and when I minimized the Safari window the bottom part of the screen was blank.  Now for all you PC users the bottom of the screen on an Apple is where all the programs are, in a neat little bar.  

I tried not to panic and restarted the computer.  It had to be some little mistake and I was sure that it would be fixed when the computer came back on.  No such luck.  I opened up the help window and found out that the bottom section is called the dock.  I searched through the Help section for anything with the word "dock" in it and couldn't find anything that seemed particularly helpful.  

So I called Paul.  I blurted out that my computer was broken and he said he'd call me back when he got to school.  That call revealed some interesting facts that had previously gone unmentioned.  Apparently while I was in the shower Paul had been on the computer with the baby in his lap.  She had sat nicely for a while but then she had suddenly started banging on the keys.  Paul said something came up on the screen for a second, but then everything looked fine (except the dock was gone, but I guess he didn't notice) so he didn't think to tell me (he was in a hurry to get to school).  Tonight I finally figured out how to fix it.  So complete catastrophe has been averted.  I can breath again.  

After finding out about the computer Sadie and I headed over to Denny's, mostly because I didn't want to have to deal with feeding her without a high chair.  Feeding her at Denny's may have been more difficult than the chair-less option.  First she spotted a four year old boy who was picking up breakfast-to-go with his grandmother.  After obsessively watching him (and hardly opening her mouth to eat she was so distracted) for about ten minutes, two men in army fatigues walked by.  She practically turned in her chair to watch them go from one side of the room to the other.  Next a construction worked came in.  She stared at him for a solid fifteen minutes, ignoring my best efforts to distract (and feed) her.  I think it was his yellow vest with the shiny reflective tape on the back.  

That, however, really can't compare with her escapades at dinner tonight (where the picture at the top of the page was taken).  Paul, Kehli, Michelle, Sadie and I went to Sweet Tomatoes for dinner.  The table next to ours was very close (so close that Sadie could swivel around and touch it, even belted into the high chair) so when a family was seated at it just before we were about to leave, I scooped Sadie up so she wouldn't grab their food.  She started to talk to and then squeal at the teenage girl who was sitting right next to me.  The girl smiled at her and Sadie thought that was encouraging and started to giggle and lift her little arms up for the girl to pick her up.  She certainly is funny about strangers these days.  One minute she's shy when she sees someone she doesn't know and the next she's ready to be handed over to them!

Tomorrow we'll go to Mass at St. Joseph's Cathedral in San Jose and then we'll head North so Paul can be at work at 6pm.  It's going to be a long day.  I hope Sadie sleeps through tonight!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Day One in the Bay


We had a busy day today.  I woke up early, proofread Paul's paper, packed my bag, Sadie's clothes bag, Sadie's food bag and Sadie's medicine bag and then woke up Paul.  We were on the road by 10ish (only an hour late) and made it all the way to Sunnyvale by 3:30, making only one stop on the way.  Sadie must be feeling better (although her nose is still super stuffy) because she was cheerful the entire time, which is why we made fairly good time (for traveling with a baby anyways).  

While Sadie was a good sport about the long car ride she was glad when we finally got here and the two pictures of her with her fish pillow were taken about five minutes after we walked into the room.  She was all smiles and kept trying to convince me to hand over my camera so that she could get a closer look at it.  

Our motel is only a few blocks from Kehli's (Sadie's godmother) apartment and so after Paul took his nap (he has a hard time switching from nights to days each week) she came over and we went out to dinner.  Kehli brought Sadie a present in a princess castle bag and Sadie really seems to be getting the idea of presents.  When Kehli handed it to her she reached for it and when I held up the cute little lady bug outfit so that she could see it she grabbed it and hugged it against her chest.  She's going to be Auntie Kehli's good little shopper.
After that we headed over to Old Spaghetti Factory (the one restaurant that I really really really crave now that we live 250 miles away from the closest one) for dinner.  Sadie spent most of the time trying to maneuver so that her face was close enough to the table so that she could lick it.  I tried to keep her distracted with her sippy cup/ rice cereal/ mashed bananas/ toy keys, but when she sets her mind to something she doesn't give up easily.  At least this particular restaurant has tables that look clean.  You don't realize how many restaurants don't do a great job keeping their tables clean until you have a baby who feels that her main purpose in life is licking everything that she can get her hands on. 

Sadie and Paul are both already asleep so I guess I will turn in too.  Goodnight!  

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Sadie Update

We're back from the doctor and it turned out to be a good thing that I'm a "Worrier."  She has another ear infection (and when we weighed her the scale said that she had lost three ounces).  So she is back on antibiotics.  The doctor also said that we can travel (he said it she'd either be sick here or sick there) so tomorrow it's off to the Bay Area.  Hopefully she'll sleep on the five hour car ride...

Still Sick

I called the doctor's office this morning and Sadie now has an appointment at 4:15 in Redding.  She did sleep from 11 to 4 last night, but her cough sounds worse and I want to make sure she doesn't have another ear infection.  Since she has discovered her ears and thinks it's funny to pull on them it's really hard to tell if they hurt.  

When she woke up at 4 am her nose was stuffy but she wasn't fussy.  Instead she rolled to the far side of the bed and stared up at the little green light on the fire alarm.  She rolled around trying to look at it from different angles, including upside down.  Then she started talking to the fire alarm.  I started to worry.  I was still really sleepy.  Was she really breathing "alright" or was I just telling myself that so that I didn't have to get up?  I woke up a little bit more.  I wondered if her little developing brain was getting enough oxygen.  She started to cough.  

Five minutes later we were downstairs on the couch trying to maneuver the nasal aspirator past her freakishly strong little arms.  Paul was back from work and was up working on a paper.  By five she was asleep again, although her breathing was loud and rattled.  At six I had to keep myself from throwing Pumpkin across the room because she  walked around us yowling and trying to get past my outstretched hand to rub her face against the baby.

Now we just have to wait to drive in to town (1.5 hours) to see the doctor.  

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Seven Months Ago


Sadie is seven months old today!

I can't actually remember what was happening seven months ago at this time.  I think it was the little morphine button that they told me to push every 15 minutes.  I remember everything up until they started that IV, but afterwards everything is a fuzzy until they moved us down to pediatrics (because the maternity was overflowing and they needed our room).  

Sadie is still sick today.  She didn't have a fever yesterday, but she woke me up at midnight when she couldn't breath through her nose because she was so stuffed up.  I took her down stairs and sat up with her on the couch, dozing off and on until 4:30.  At 4:30 she was breathing more easily and I took her back upstairs to bed.  She was so exhausted from being up so late that she slept all the way to 7:40, which is the latest that I have slept in the last seven months.  

She was miserable all day, although she didn't have a fever (actually her temperature has stayed at around 97.5 degrees because of the baby tylenol).  The nasal aspirator doesn't seem to help much and has only proved that Sadie is remarkable strong (she can grab my arm and almost keep it away from her little nose when she really tries).  The steam vaporizer Penguin is definitely the high point of the day and Sadie puts her hands up to go over and see it and then tries to kiss it's nose, so that she's getting the full benefit of the steam.  She does have a fever again, so I guess it was to early to stop taking the tylenol.

These last few days have been long for everybody and have sapped my creativity!  I feel like I have a newborn again.  Hopefully tomorrow will be better.  Goodnight!  

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Thank Goodness for The Penguin Humidifier

Last night was a long night.  Sadie's fever seemed to hit all at once and we had a very miserable time until she finally passed out a little bit after midnight.  For a baby that goes to bed every night at 7:30, those extra four and a half hours really seemed to drag.  Our doctor happened to be the doctor on call when Paul called (after midnight) and he told us to alternate between Motrin and Tylenol (Motrin every 6 hours and Tylenol ever 4 hours).  Paul drove all the way back into Weaverville and picked up the Motrin.  By the time he got home she was asleep.

I put her down in the middle of the bed at 1:30 and finally fell asleep at around 2am.  Between 2 and 6 we woke up at least two times (I say at least because the times between being awake and being asleep start to blur together after a while) and she woke up for good with a very stuffy nose at 7am.  She had breakfast with Nani while I went back upstairs to take a nap and when I came back down stairs Sadie was nose to nose with the penguin humidifier.  Apparently she had spotted it from across the room and had fussed to be brought over so she could take a closer look at it.  The penguin humidifier is cold steam and she was having a blast playing in the steam.  Incidentally that meant that she was also breathing in lost of steamy air and seemed to be feeling much better.  When we took her temperature (after finally tearing her away from the penguin) it was confirmed.  It had fallen from 101.4 to 98.4.  The Tylenol had worked!  She's still not feeling great, but we've managed to keep her temperature down (it starts to go up just as a dose wears off).  Hopefully tomorrow will  be even better.

Because we did spend all of today inside resting, we watched all of the inauguration coverage.  Sadie was fascinated by all of the parades and music and struggled to stay awake before finally drifting off for both her morning and afternoon naps while watching the inauguration coverage. 

Monday, January 19, 2009

Splish Spash in the Brand New Bath!

I think tonight may be a very long night.  Sadie started coughing this morning, but I wasn't too worried because she thinks that coughing is funny and so she does little fake coughs all the time.  Her cough sounded more real this morning, but she laughed hysterically after each cough.  It really didn't seem like she was feeling sick.  It was supposed to be warm and sunny in Redding and Nani and Grumpa were taking a quick trip in to visit Hoho, so Sadie and I tagged along to get a little fresh air.  Sadie seemed fine all day long.  

Nani picked out a new bath tub for Sadie at Target, because she's getting really long for her old one.  The new one is pink and has a high back on one side where she can sit up straight and a slopped back on the other side.  

I wasn't sure how bath time was going to go tonight because of the change.  Sadie's really brave when trying new things, but she's also very devoted to her schedule.  The normal schedule is this: Sadie takes her bath, we put on buttermilk lotion, she gets in her sleep sack and we head down stairs.  During the bath we sing the Rubber Ducky Song.  Half way down the stairs we stop on the landing so she can reach up and touch the red and yellow trim on one of the quilts that hang over the banister and then we say goodnight to Grumpa.  If Daddy is home we say goodnight to him too.  Then it's bed time.

The new bath tub was a hit.  It's deeper than the other tub too, but Sadie was fearless and she even sat up like a big girl instead of laying back like a newborn.  And she finally realized what a rubber duck is (I've showed her the ducks before, but she never really paid attention to them until tonight).  Unfortunately she thinks that a Rubber Duck is a food source.  

After the bath things went down hill fast.  We got all ready for bed and went down stairs.  She was laying back against me and I realized that she was really warm.  Her breathing started to get a little stuffy too.  I took her back upstairs and took her temperature.  101.4.  She was still giggly and happy.  We went in the bathroom and breathed steam, while Grumpa went over and got the penguin humidifier from Great Grandpa and Great Grandma's house.  She also took a baby dose of tylenol to try to knock the fever down.  

Another half hour passed and she got really stuffy and was having a hard time breathing.  I used the little nasal aspirator to try to help her, but that only ended in a hysterical crying fit with lots of tears.  The crying made her even hotter and it was getting even harder for her to breath.  I bundled her up and took her outside (thank you Gramma!  I would never have figured out how much that would help if you hadn't told me!), where it is cold (while it's warm during the day, we've been getting hard freezes at night).  She stopped crying the second we stepped outside and took some really deep breaths.  When we came back inside she fell asleep after about two minutes and is now sleeping soundly (and still breathing easily).  Paul is still at work and is going to be surprised by all of this when he gets home because when he left she wasn't even really sick.  

I am prepared for a long night.  Earlier in the night she could breath easily as long as she was propped up, so I'm not sure the crib or the bed is going to work.  We may be spending a good portion of the night on the couch (at least it reclines!).  

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Sadie's Big Date

Sadie couldn't believe her luck today.  Not only did she get to watch a three month old baby sleep in the pew behind us at church (which made her a little fussy because the baby wasn't paying attention to her.  She was busy sleeping) but she had a date.  A Play Date.  

Kate and I met the summer before second grade and while she now lives with her husband Chris and son Finley all the way across the country in Pennsylvania, they were out on a quick trip to California and they drove all the way out here to visit today.  We hadn't seen each other since the first summer after college, more than four years ago.  When they got out of the car, Sadie could not believe her eyes.  There was an actual boy at her house. 

She watched him very carefully.  He is seventeen months old and can already run and jump and climb.  After coming inside the house for a few minutes we went on a walk to feed the horses and see the river. 

Sadie was bundled into her stroller for the walk, while Finley alternated between walking and being carried.  He was very interested in the wheels of the stroller (the Bob Stroller does have giant wheels to go through the mud and rocks) and in Sadie's blanket.  There was also a pine cone that caught his eye and a fascinating piece of bark.  After the walk we headed inside.  

Finley thought Sadie's nose and toes were funny and she seemed to think that he was absolutely fascinating (although at times she was a little overwhelmed by having another baby in her house and hid her eyes.  She couldn't believe that he was actually there, playing with her!).  He also was big enough to go outside to sit on Grumpa's tractor, Big Red.  

After dinner Sadie was sitting on my lap on the recliner and Fin kept bringing over toys and handing them to me and then looking at Sadie to tell me that I needed to hand the toys to Sadie.  He's a good little sharer.  

Now you might be wondering about the picture above, and asking yourself how it ties in to this particular blog.  Well, it is Paul's favorite picture of our wedding day (it is kind of funny!).  When I saw how the picture above of Finley and Sadie looking in opposite direction turned out (we were trying to get a cute picture of them looking at each other) it reminded me of that picture.  Especially since Kate and I had just finished explaining to Chris and Paul how Fin and Sadie are betrothed (we also explained that it's not like it's an arranged wedding, because when they met it was clearly love at first sight.).  

They think that we're kidding.  They have no idea how many Barbie weddings we planned, set up and carried out together!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Adventures in Reading

I know that reading is important.  Our board book collection has now overflowed off of the Baby Book book shelf and is taking over the sitting room upstairs.  At this point though, it is largely untouched.  

In the beginning, before Sadie could really control the movements of her arms, she would sit quietly and nurse while I read to her.  Then the frustration set in, and Story Time has not been the same.  Sadie loves the "book" that's attached to her exersaucer.  It has three hard plastic pages and because they're bolted down to the tray she can turn them herself.  It's one of her favorite toys.  I wish that all the books we had were that easy to handle and durable.  It's amazing how much damage an infant can do to a sturdy looking board book.

Lately story time has become a little bit more difficult.  I think it's because Sadie understands the concept of books and really wants to help, but she's not quite coordinated enough to turn pages, so she gets frustrated.  

Story Time goes something like this: we sit down on the couch and I pick up the book.  Sadie will immediately start to fuss and whine.  She reaches for the book and I let her take it.  She calms down and tastes it and then tries to open it.  Her little hands might be able to open the book to the middle, but when she actually tries to turn the pages she isn't able to, and she starts to cry.  

I've been trying to develop different strategies to make Story Time fun.  I've tried giving her a toy to hold so that her hands are full so that she doesn't want to hold the book (she throws the toy down and grabs the book).  I've tried popping Binkie into her mouth so that her mouth is full and she doesn't want to taste the book (she spits Binkie out and starts to fuss as she sucks on the book).  I've tried giving her a book to hold so that we both have a book and she can work on turning the pages of her book while I read to her (she throws her book down and tries to grab my book, while whimpering).  Hopefully as she gets a little more coordinated she will get a little less frustrated.  

On the other hand she loves the Your Baby Can Read videos and has started doing little movements when the words come on the screen.  So far she has waved when it says "wave," pointed when they said "can you point at the word baby?" and touched her ear when the word on the screen said "ear."  At least she's getting some reading in.

Tomorrow is a big day!  Sadie has her first play date.  Finley (who, at 17 months is a big boy) is in California from Pennsylvania this week and he and his parents are driving out for a visit.  Sadie's not going to know what to do when she sees a big kid in the house!

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Great Climbing Challenge

Sadie eats pizza?  Not quite... yet.. .although she  thinks she's ready for it.  So far it's just milk, rice cereal, sweet potatoes, peas, apples, pears, peaches, bananas and now, as of dinner tonight, carrots.  She gobbles up everything and tries to convince us that she's ready for more (except apples.  She did eat the apples but made little puckered faces like they were sour).  Here she is eating bananas, her very favorite food, at a Pizza Factory.  

Today we started child proofing but we still have a long ways to go.  While Sadie is slightly interested in crawling and sitting up by herself she is obsessed with climbing.  Yesterday I was sitting on the floor next to her while she was practicing sitting up.  Then she decided that climbing is much more fun.  Sadie threw herself across my leg and then shimmied her way from my knee to my ankle with a look of complete determination. 
That look was soon replaced by another expression that I recognized.  It was the same look that a cat gets right before it pounces on something.  She paused and then attacked my sock.  She tried to shove it into her mouth (luckily they were clean.  I'd only just put them on.).  I moved my foot out of the way but that only increased the challenge.  Sadie doesn't give up easily.

This afternoon, Sammy, our cat, sat on the couch behind me.  Sadie pushed herself into a standing position on my lap and then pulled herself, little by little towards Sammy.  She might have caught her too, but when she was almost there she let out an excited little squeal and Sammy took off.  
Also on the list of things she'd like to climb are the hearth and coffee table.  We have a lot of work to do before the house is childproofed!

First Words

I had written about Sadie's first words earlier and here's the one that we caught on tape on Christmas morning!  You can just barely hear it after I ask her whether or not she's playing with her toes.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

To Sleep or Not to Sleep (or to co-sleep or not to sleep...)

Before Sadie was born, I knew everything.  I had read every book I could get my hands on and subscribed to every pregnancy and parenting magazine that I saw at Barnes and Nobles.  I knew that I would breast feed (I stuck with that one) and that Sadie would get vaccines (I stuck with that one too).  And I knew that Sadie would spend her nights sound asleep in her own crib.  That sentence alone lets you know how delusional I was.  You see it has words like "sound asleep" when describing a baby.  

I knew that I would be awake constantly in the beginning.  Nani told me that I had started sleeping through the night at six weeks and I guess I figured that that was average.   During those first few weeks I was exhausted but I knew that I could stick it out because there was an end in sight.  Before long Sadie would be sleeping twelve hours like the babies that were described in several magazine articles and I would start to feel human again.  

You may have noticed a theme in my blogs recently.  Sleep.  It's because it's a topic that's been on my mind a lot lately.  It's kind of like when you're on a diet and you've decided that you can't have something, let's say it's ice cream, and all the sudden all you can think about is ice cream, day in, day out.  But things have gotten a little bit better.  Kind of.

In the beginning when Sadie cried, I got up.  I picked her up and took her into the sitting room so Paul could sleep (we only have one room so we're all together).  I would nurse her and get her back to sleep and then carry her back to her bassinet.  I would carefully sway, trying not to jar her in any way and then delicately place her in her bassinet.  

Then, one weekend, we went with Paul down to school and stayed in a motel.  Sadie had gotten too big for the bassinet so we got a room with two beds.  I slept with Sadie, and Paul got his own bed.  For the first time in four months, she slept through the night.  And I slept (though not through the night).  More importantly, I learned something.  I had been afraid that I would roll over Sadie and squish her.  That night I found that a) I sleep very lightly these days and any time she makes a tiny sound, I jolt awake and b) I am not physically able to roll over a 20lb baby without waking up.  Sadie is big.  I rolled towards her once and my arm touched her lightly.  I was instantly awake.  

Once Paul started working nights co-sleeping became an even more viable option.  In the beginning I didn't plan on letting Sadie stay in the bed.  She would wake up crying at 12 or 2 and I would go over and pick her up.  I would feed her in the bed and the next thing I knew it would be two hours later and she would be starting to fuss for feeding number two.  I started getting a lot more sleep (although waking up three times a night is still a lot, even when I'm not getting up).  

So these days it's a compromise.  She spends half the night in her crib and half the night in the bed.  Since I've allowed myself to change my mind I'm actually starting to feel kind of rested (although it is evident by my sleep obsession that we still have a ways to go).  And I imagine that one of these days I will wake up and she will have slept through the night all by herself.  In her crib.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Definitely Not Shy...

Today we drove into Redding to pick up Sadie's birth certificate. I have to take it in to Health and Human Services tomorrow (they finally called me back! It only took three and a half months, two visits to the office and two phone calls to get a call back.) and hopefully we will have health insurance before our next scheduled doctor's appointment (June 11th for Sadie's one year check up).

Sadie's personality continues to develop. We went to Michael's today to pick up a few supplies for my latest project. A few days ago I got the latest catalogue for the kid's issue of Pottery Barn. They have these cute little floral globes that hang from the ceiling. However the price was insane. $90 a piece. So on Monday when we were in Redding I picked up a styrofoam globe and a few stems of silk flowers. It looked exactly the same (for way, way, way less) and it was super easy to make (I'll put up a picture once our internet is working a little faster again, tonight it's slow). But I needed a few more flowers to finish it so after lunch we were back at the craft store, which was pretty crowded. Walking around Michael's with Sadie was like making a public appearance with Miss America. She smiled and giggled at every single person she saw. At random intervals she would let out silly little squeals.

She's also a hit at her great grandmother's care home. Hoho (that's what we've always called her) is in memory care. If you've never been in a memory care unit, they aren't exactly the most cheery places in the world. The residents have varying degrees of dementia or memory loss. Things can get pretty crazy, literally, with people yelling and screaming gibberish. After Sadie was born I was a little bit nervous about bringing her by. But after going in the first few times with her I noticed a huge change. All of the residents calm down when she's there. They're so intent on the baby that's in the room that the mood completely changes. People are smiling and happy and some of the residents who I had never heard speak will talk about how beautiful "he" is (it's always "he" even if she's wearing bright pink with a bow in her hair). There are actual smiles. And Sadie is right where she loves to be as the center of attention.

Paul is no longer saying that he thinks that she's going to be shy.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Squeals, Squawks and Smiles

Sadie was in fine form this morning.  She has a great sense of timing, particularly when we're at church.  I can tell that she's about to squeal (it's not a scream but a joyful little squawk) when she flings her arms straight out to the side and takes a deep breath.  I try to pop Binkie into her mouth when I hear her take the breath, but she's now learned to squeal loudly while sucking on Binkie.  Her squawks usually come whenever there's a pause or silence but they can also follow something that she finds hilarious (who knew that there is so much for a six month old to find funny during mass).  She can also blow raspberries with Binkie in (I'm not sure how that's even possible).  Besides frequent Binkie use I also try jiggling and swaying but she can't really take all this hushing seriously when I'm trying not to laugh.  For the most part though, she sits pretty quietly.  I think that today she averaged one squeal every five minutes (maybe a little bit more towards the end).  

However the high point of Sadie's day came a little bit later when we met Nani and Grumpa and went to Burger King.  Sadie was sitting in her high chair (whenever we go to Burger King I'm especially thankful for her floppy seat cover because the high chairs are sticky) and another Grandma and Grandpa came and sat at the booth next to us with their grandson.  He was a cute little boy with blonde curls who was about a year old and his high chair was only about three feet away from Sadie.  He saw her right away and smiled and kept glancing over.  Nani and I tried to get her to look over ("Sadie look, there's a big boy") because she's usually so funny when she sees other babies.  After looking over at her about four times with no reaction the little boy said "hi."  Sadie glanced over and then turned to face the other way.  She was fascinated by Donny the fifteen year old boy that worked at Burger King who was sweeping the floor.  He was busy sweeping and clearing tables, but Sadie thought he was the greatest and smiled and even raised her hand to wave (she's starting to wave now!).  Yes, the high point of Sadie's day was watching the floor be swept at Burger King.  

Maybe I should try putting her in her high chair and sweeping the kitchen the next time she gets fussy.  

Monday, January 12, 2009

Vaccines and Diapers

Today Sadie went in for her six month vaccines.  At her four month appointment she really didn't seem to know what was coming, but now she panics the moment the nurse walks into the room.  

Before Sadie got her first set of shots I told myself that they really wouldn't hurt too much.  I tried to convince myself that my phobia (if the word phobia is too strong in this case, it's only barely) of needles really is irrational.  I fainted when I gave blood.  I fainted after I had a TB test during my physical the summer before starting college.  I get dizzy during blood tests.  So when we took Sadie in for her first set of shots I did my absolute best to help her feel comfortable.  I smiled at her reassuringly.  And then I watched, helplessly as she screamed and burst into tears.  See there's a reason that people are afraid of needles.  Because shots hurt!    And she now apparently remembers that.  

This set of shots was the worst so far (for me) because of Sadie's new word, which I wrote about earlier this week.  After getting her first shot (there were four shots altogether) she started sobbing "mama, mama, mama" over and over.  It was heartbreaking!  I was so relieved when I could scoop her up in my arms and she stopped crying!

After the doctor's appointment we swung by Costco to pick up diapers.  I had cut out a coupon that was good only if you bought diapers and wipes.  Coupons are good: the price of diapers at our Costco has risen two dollars since Sadie was born six months ago.  The down side of the coupon is that you have to buy the wipes to get the discount on the diapers, which means that we already have a lot of wipes (from the last coupon) and have now bought more.  I guess I need to start using them for other things.  

Back to diaper shopping:  I have this illogical fear that the economy is going to get so bad that all of the diaper makers will go out of business and stop making diapers or that diapers will get so expensive that we won't be able to afford them (or that there will be a diaper shortage and our little city won't be a priority and won't get a shipment of diapers!).  In this scenario I will have to start using cloth diapers.  Maybe this wouldn't be so bad, however, I don't want to find out.  I do not like the idea of swishing a diaper in the toilet.  

Thus I have a stockpile of diapers slowly accumulating in the garage.  Sadie is currently a size three.  Today I bought one box of threes and one box of fours.  Over five hundred diapers are now stockpiled in the garage.  If a diaper shortage comes I will be alright, at least for a couple of months.  

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Sadie Giggles with Mrs. Bunny


This is from the middle of last month, right after dinner.  Mrs. Bunny was being particularly funny.

Our Growing Girl: Church, Restaurant and Sippy Cups

Sadie is asleep for the night (or at least for the hour).  She woke up seven times last night, which comes out to once every hour, for me at least, although it wasn't quite spaced that way.  You would think that a baby that was up that much at night would take long naps during the day, but she only went down for an hour for her morning nap and then refused to take her afternoon nap altogether.  

During the first months of Sadie's life we sat in a little room that's off the back of the church so that we could close the door if she had a complete meltdown and needed to nurse or be changed (our church is really small and doesn't have an official kid's/baby's room like some of the bigger churches).  When we went during the week we would sit out with everybody else, but on the weekends when it was crowded the little room was perfect.  In the last few weeks we have graduated from the little room and have started sitting out with everyone else.  And Sadie loves it.

She can see things a lot better sitting on my lap out in the pews than she could through the doorway of the little room and actually sits pretty still most of the time.  Today there was a tiny baby (I mean really tiny!  Sadie was never that small!) two rows behind us and Sadie noticed her right away and spent a fair amount of time peering over Paul's shoulder at her.  

After church we went to breakfast at Marino's.  Sadie's curiosity about everything around her continues to blossom.  She sat in the high chair with her Floppy and surveyed the room.  After she spent a bit of time trying to lick the table I decided to distract her with one of her favorite toys, Bug.  Sadie's first experiment of he day involved holding Bug straight out to the side, looking at Paul to make sure that he was watching and then intentionally dropping (and at times throwing) Bug onto the floor.  

After picking Bug up for the fifteenth time, breakfast was served and I pulled out the red sippy cup that I had been saving to distract Sadie from our food (which she thinks that she's ready for).  Sadie slurped down half of the water in her sippy cup in a matter of minutes and then started experimenting with the limitations of a "spill proof" sippy cup.  She very intentionally held the sippy cup straight out to the side, looked at the "sippy" part and then started shaking it over and over again.  I watched her do this three times before I was absolutely sure that she really was trying to spill the water onto the floor, just to see what would happen.  It's going to be a real adventure when she starts feeding herself.  I have a feeling things are going to get very messy around here.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

More "First Words"

Today Sadie said her first word.  I'm ignoring the fact that she has already said "hi" "no" and "hello" (this is rather difficult to do since we have her saying "no" as the answer to a question on a recording of Christmas morning) and three people witnessed it when she said "hello."  Those are not the first words that I had in mind for Sadie.  This is.    

About four days ago when Sadie started to get fussy, I noticed that she was saying the same sound over and over again.  It sounded like "A-ma...A-ma...A-ma..." and while she said it she lifted her little arms up for me to pick her up.  Three days ago she did it again, on two different occasions.  Yesterday she started saying, "mmmmm A-ma... mmmmm A-ma..." so that it almost sounded like "mama."  

This morning she had plenty of opportunity to practice her new word.  It was 24 degrees when we woke up (I know that's not cold for a lot of you, but it felt pretty cold to me) and I still have a cough so I avoided bundling Sadie up and taking her on a walk until it warmed up.  After a few days of warm weather Sadie has apparently decided that our twice daily walk is part of her daily routine and that time in the exersaucer, while good, is not a substitute for our regularly scheduled walk.  So she fussed through tummy time, which is now more like rolling time, and she fussed through exersaucer time and she took breaks to fuss while she was nursing.  She even fussed while she had a great big smile on her face playing with her toys.  I explained to her that fussing while smiling really makes the whine unbelievable, but she didn't seem convinced.  Throughout all this whining it sounded to me like she was saying "mama."  I didn't point it out to anyone because I thought it might just be wishful thinking (and because everyone else was out and about).  

This afternoon Paul and I had a date day (which is really more like two hours) and watched a movie (complete with kettle corn and soda, which destroyed my lose the baby weight resolution for the entire day) while Nani and Grumpa watched Sadie.  Sadie hadn't taken her afternoon nap when we were getting ready to go, so I nursed her until she fell asleep and then popped Flowered Binkie into her mouth and handed her over to Nani.  When we got back to the house Nani said that Sadie had woken up minutes after I'd walked out the door.  And she had been unhappy to learn that she had been left.  Nani noticed that when she was fussing she whined while repeating the word "mama, mama, mama" over and over.  

So Sadie's new word isn't just a figment of my imagination.  She really is saying something that sounds like "Mama."  I'll just keep pretending that I didn't hear her say "NO!" first.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Sleepy...Very Sleepy...

As most of you probably know, Sadie still isn't sleeping through the night.  When she was four weeks old she slept through the night (one time).  My first thought was, this is it!  She's sleeping through the night.  At that point it already seemed like I had been awake, forever.  If you had told me in July that in January Sadie still wouldn't be sleeping through the night, I probably would have suffered a nervous breakdown.  At three months she slept through the night (or at least slept for eight hours) for two whole weeks.  Again, I thought, this is it!  I could stay up past nine o'clock without worrying that it was going to be an Awake Night for Sadie.  If I was awake past nine I would worry that I had wasted the few hours when I actually could have slept peacefully doing something silly like checking my emails for the first time in a month or doing a load of laundry.  

I was sure that when we started solid foods she would start sleeping through the night.  After all, she was just waking up because she was hungry.  I read in What to Expect in the First Year that a baby is usually metabolically able to sleep through the night at around 11 lbs and Sadie was definitely over 11 lbs at 3 months.  In fact, she was probably over 11 lbs at 2 months (she did start at 9 lbs 4 oz).  However, we are now at 18 lbs 7 oz and she still seems to think that she needs to be fed three to four time a night.  

Before Sadie was born I read several books on breast feeding and two in particular stressed "ecological breast feeding."  There are rules for ecological breast feeding, like sleep when the baby sleeps (I do that once in a while, usually only when I'm really exhausted), don't use a pacifier (that lasted about a week) and feed on demand.  They really stress feeding the baby whenever they want to be fed, particularly at night.  This is the only "ecological" rule that we've stuck too.  That may be the reason that I'm still clinging to it.  

Or maybe the sleep deprivation has made me delusional.  I'm still clinging to the delusion that Sadie is going to start sleeping through the night, miraculously, on her own.  It may even be tonight!  

Last night is the perfect example of our sleep troubles.  I went to sleep at 10pm.  I am sick again (or still sick... there was a one day break between the flu and this cold so I'm not sure if it's something new or if it's just a continuation of the flu...).  My coughing woke Sadie up at 11:45 (she usually makes it to 12).  I got up and fed her and then went downstairs and found Paul, who had the night off.  Since he works nights I'm usually on my own on the Baby Night Shift, so he doesn't really get a great idea of what the Baby Night Shift is like these days.  He came up and made sure that I woke up at 3am when she was crying (I was worried that I'd sleep through her crying because of the cough syrup) and brought her over so that I could feed her in the bed.  She went back to sleep in her crib and slept until 6am.  

When asked later in the day how Sadie slept, our different responses embodied our different attitudes.  My attitude is shaped by serious sleep deprivation.  Paul's is shaped by the fact that he, for the most part, gets to sleep in consecutive shifts because when he's asleep the baby and I are out and about.  When asked Paul said that between midnight and six am Sadie only woke up to eat one time.  I guess that technically this is true.  When I was asked I said that between the hours of midnight and six Sadie woke up three times.  At midnight, three and six.  Oh, how I wish we had a schedule right now!

Now it's off to bed.  Maybe, just maybe, Sadie will really sleep through the night tonight!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

It's Official: I'm a Worrier

I read every baby book and magazine that I could get my hands on before Sadie was born.  I finished the first five months of "What to Expect in the First Year" after zipping through "What to Expect When Your Expecting" a month before my due date.  I took every class that our hospital offered, despite the three hour round trip drive into town.  I hoped that all that I'd learned would stick in my head and that when Sadie was born I would have some idea of what was going on.  

I did learn a lot from all that reading.  I've only panicked and called the doctor with questions twice during the last six months.  But after our last doctors appointment I have been labeled.  I am a "Worrier."  

I'm a first time mom!  Of course I worry.  I worry that it is either too hot or too cold in the room at night.  I worried when I took her to get her first vaccines, even though I know logically, after reading all that I could find on the subject, that there is nothing to worry about.  I worried that Sadie was going to be allergic to the antibiotics the doctor gave her for her ear infection (I'm allergic to most of them, so there' some logic behind it!) and I hardly slept after she learned to roll over and started insisting on sleeping on her stomach all the time.  And that brings me to the reason that I have been labeled a Worrier.  

When Sadie started sleeping on her stomach I stopped sleeping altogether.  I hated that her little nose was so close to the bottom of the bassinet (this was before she was sleeping in her crib).  I imagined carbon dioxide collecting near her face despite the three (yes, three) blasting fans that cause a small wind storm in our otherwise balmy room.  I checked on her every ten minutes and would quietly try to slip her back onto her back once she was soundly asleep.  Within three minutes she would flip back over onto her stomach.  On one particularly long night I turned her onto her back twelve times.  I was so worried that when I saw a baby monitor (the Angelcare Movement Sensor with Baby Monitor) with a motion sensor that slipped under the mattress, I ordered it right away.  The mattress sensor attaches to a monitor with a halo night light and two little green lights.  One light shows that the monitor is on and the other flashes every time that the baby breathes or moves.  If the monitor doesn't feel the baby move after fifteen seconds there's a little beep.  If there's no movement for another five seconds an alarm goes off.  

The alarm has gone off a few times.  It goes off when I forget to turn it off when I pick the baby up at night.  It went off a few times when Sadie squirmed into a corner of the crib and shoved her arm out the side after pulling the "breathable bumper" down all the way.  And it went off once for no reason whatsoever.  This happened when she was sick, a few nights before the doctors appointment.  I rushed over and put my hand on her back and the alarm shut off.  I looked at the little green light and it flickered on and off again.  

At our appointment last week I asked the doctor what he thought.  He said that he's sure it was just a malfunction with the sensor, which is what Paul and I thought too.  But after questioning me on why I have the sensor in the first place (because it lets me actually sleep when she sleeps!  Worry free!) he declared me a Worrier.  

I may be a Worrier, but I'm a Worrier that sleeps a few extra hours each night!

And here is today's Sadie News: She rolled all over the room today.  She can change directions now and control where she's going.  While I was sitting next to her she rolled over to the rocks at the base of the hearth and tried to figure out how to pull herself up (we have some major baby proofing to do).  She also got to see her first giant burn pile today, because Grumpa is trying to get ride of all the broken branches from the trees that got cut down so we could have high speed internet (you have to have a clear view of the southern sky for satellite internet and that's not easy to find around here).  Tonight when we went out to dinner for a belated birthday dinner for Nani she sat up like a big girl in her high chair the entire time and ate a whole bowl of sweet potatoes and a whole bowl of peas before coming home and eating a whole bowl of rice cereal.  As I was wiping her face off, she did her baby Hungry Cry and tried to convince me that she was starving.  I think she might be going through another growth spurt.  At this rate she'll be taller than I am by kindergarden.  

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The Odd Couple: Sadie and Pumpkin

The last few days have been warm (relatively) with temperatures almost climbing up to sixty degrees (if your standing directly in the sun and there's no wind).  It is thirty to forty degrees warmer than it was less than a week ago, so we've been bundling Sadie up and taking her outside to soak up a little bit of warm sun and breath in the fresh air.  Yesterday we found out that a mountain lion jumped out in front of a runner on Sky Ranch Road, across the river, and then disappeared into the brush, so Nani and I are sticking together and carrying a big walking stick so that we can wave it in the air to look bigger if we run into trouble.

Sadie and Pumpkin are an odd pair.  Pumpkin is our little orange tail-less tabby cat.  She will be 17 this March.  Pumpkin has a bad reputation around here.  In the past when my cousins have visited and Pumpkin has walked into the room, they have lifted there feet off the ground as if she were about to devour their ankles.  So when we first brought Sadie home from the hospital I watched Pumpkin.  In the beginning she gave us a lot of space, as if she understood that trying to get too close was a no no for all of the animals in the house.  When Sadie fussed or cried Pumpkin would look concerned and sit nearby like a small orange guard cat.  Once Sadie started moving on her own and rolling around on the floor Pumpkin's interest increased dramatically.  Pumpkin would slip over to Sadie whenever I was a few feet away and would lick the baby's nose before darting away to sit by the fire.  

Sadie doesn't understand the idea of "gentle" although we have started talking about being "gentle" with the cats.  When Delilah isn't quick enough she grabs on to either side of her face and holds on for dear life (Delilah has been remarkably good with her, although I think she has started keeping her distance).  Sadie's also caught hold of Sammy's tail and sides several time and come away with fur between her fingers.  With Pumpkin however, she's gentle.  She seems to understand that Pumpkin is pretty frail.

While it's a little bit unnerving to see them together on Sadie's blanket (I stay very close, ready to intervene if either of them gets out of hand) they're very sweet together.  When Sadie sees Pumpkin she starts to squeal loudly.  Instead of running away (like all of the other cats on the property), Pumpkin will hobble over.  This will send Sadie into a frenzy of squealing, waving her arms and laughing.  Because of Pumpkin's reaction to the squealing (coming closer to see what's going on), Sadie has decided that squealing is a way of calling cats.  Of course the squeals send the other cats skidding out of the room in fear, but she hasn't quite figured that out yet.  

That brings us to Sadie's run in tonight with Sadie-Cat, our super shy 15 year old siamese.  Sadie-Cat can't jump up onto Nani and Grumpa's bed anymore so Nani had lifted her up.  While Nani and I were getting Sadie ready for bed tonight Sadie flipped over to get a closer look at Sadie-Cat.  About two months ago Sadie squealed at Sadie-Cat, who up until that point had not been afraid of her.  It took about six weeks for Sadie-Cat to get over that squeal and come near the baby again.  Then tonight Sadie flipped over, squirmed as close as she could to the cat, pushed herself up into a full crawling position and squealed at the top of her lungs.  Sadie-Cat froze and stared at her.  Sadie, who's used to getting a reaction from someone when she does something, pushed herself up a second time, rocked forward towards Sadie-Cat and screamed a second time.  Sadie-Cat is probably still cowering behind Grumpa's recliner in the corner of the room.  I imagine that Sadie-Cat is probably going to be in hiding for the next six to eight months.  

Pumpkin is Sadie's cat and Sadie is Pumpkin's Baby.  At least that is how I think they both see it.  

Peekaboo Baby!

The quality isn't great (it was taken with our regular camera) but I wanted to show a clip of Sadie playing peekaboo!  She plays peekaboo with people and inanimate objects.  It's hilarious!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Sadie Makes a Friend!


Today was a big day for Sadie.  We didn't know that it was going to be a big day when we started out.  After church we headed over to Health and Human Services.  It wasn't really a part of the day that I was looking forward to.  I knew that there was a good chance that it would take a while, but it was something that needed to be done.  

When going in to try to get an answer to a question from someone who works at Health and Human Services you wait in line to speak with a woman sitting at a desk behind a thick pane of glass with a little gap at the bottom where papers can be slid back and forth.  After a few minutes in the building I decided that the glass was to protect the workers from the people they are "helping" because by the time you leave there's a good chance you're going to be so frustrated that you want to throw something.  The glass also means that you have to speak loudly for the woman on the other side to hear you.  Incidentally this also means that every other person in the waiting room is going to hear every single word that you say.  This is especially pleasant because by the end of your time in the waiting room you will likely be groveling for someone, anyone really, to help.  No one seems capable of helping or giving answers, but you can leave a message and they are pretty certain that someone who knows what they're talking about will get back to you.

When I made my way to the front of the line I explained our situation to the room full of listeners.  "We applied for Healthy Families back in September but we didn't make enough so they passed us on to you.  I filled out the Medi-Cal application and had it back to you in October.  Our doctor tried to bill you and the claim was denied, so I called back at the beginning of December.  The message on the social worker's phone said to leave a message and not to call back because she would contact us.  It's been over a month now and we haven't heard anything.  So I guess I'm here to see what's going on."  She asked for a social security number.  I said that I didn't know Sadie's by heart yet, but that I had our Medi-Cal card.  She asked me, in a rather obnoxious tone that did nothing to endear her to me (I reminded myself that she probably deals with difficult people all day) if I could remember my own social security number.  I gave it to her and, wow, guess what, they didn't have anything linked to it.  I can't say that I was shocked.  She tried my name.  Nothing.  She tried Sadie's name.  Nothing.  Possibly because they're so incompetent that they can't spell our last name, something we have gone round and round about already (along with a disagreement over Sadie's birthday.  They insist that she is five.  The card, they say, says she born in 2003.  They resist all evidence to the contrary.  It may be easier to change our name then to get them to change it in the system.).  She finally took the card I had offered to give her at the beginning of our conversation.

After pulling up our information she said (in a somewhat more pleasant tone): "Oh.  Your information's here.  And it says you have a social worker.  Jill.  Would you like to leave her a note."  "I already left her a message a month ago."  I took a deep breath and balanced Sadie on my hip.  "But why not?  Maybe we'll have more luck with a note."  I took the form and went to sit at a little table with Sadie balanced on my lap.  This might have been the low point of my day, if it hadn't been the high point of Sadie's day.  

Across the room a baby with a round face was smiling at Sadie.  Sadie smiled back and her mother carried her closer.  They both cooed and squealed and waved their arms at each other in delight.  The baby was about the same length as Sadie, but she looked to have a good ten pounds on her.  When I asked her mom how old she was she smiled and said she would be six months old on the 14th.  Six months old?  If Sadie is in the 90th percentile in weight this cute little girl must be well over the 150th percentile.  She must have been around 30lbs.  When I said that Sadie is six months old she looked shocked too.  I know that whenever I see a baby that's Sadie's length I figure that it's probably at least a year old.  It's surprising to see someone taller than her that's also younger than she is.  

I filled out the form and turned it in.  I'm giving them a week before I write a letter to the editor of the newspaper (in our tiny town this might really help) and to my state congressman (thanks for the advice, Rob!).  I imagine that one of those two actions might speed things up.  Hopefully!  And at least Sadie had a good time while she was waiting.  

Monday, January 5, 2009

Now! (Sadie's personality continues to develop.)


Sadie's personality continues to develop every day.  Her "hungry" cry is no longer just for hunger.  It now means "I want something.  Now!"  It starts the same way the hungry cry starts, with coughing and a whine that almost sounds like a laugh.  Then the actual sad staccato cry starts.  Usually that goes on for a little while if I'm slow feeding her.  But now if she wants something that she can't have, like a cup full of ice water in a restaurant or the missal in church, and I move the object that she wants away, there's a very good chance that she's going to let out an indignant shriek before bursting into tears.  There's usually about a two second window during which time I might be able to distract her with another toy before the crying starts, but there's also a pretty good chance that she's going to push away whatever I offer her and start to sob.  

She's also getting more and more mobile every day.  She can sit up by herself now, but I stay right next to her when she's practicing because she has a tendency to fall over (and while some of the falls are kind of controls, others are still face plants that end in a very real cry!).

Shopping and eating out are finally getting easier!  In the beginning we lugged around the Britax carseat, but it weighed about five lbs and that, along with the baby's weight would get really heavy, really fast.  Then we got the cute little pink jeep stroller, which is great when you have two people, but which is too hard to maneuver if it's one person and more than a little basket of groceries.  We learned really quickly that if you hang your shopping bags on the handles of the little stroller and then forget that they're there and rush to pick the baby up when she fusses, the stroller, and all the bags hanging on it, will flip over, dramatically, in a crowded store full of holiday shoppers.  Sadie can finally sit up well enough to sit up in the shopping cart (and restaurant style high chairs), which means she's big enough to use the shopping cart/high chair cover that Gee gave her before she was born.  She loves it!  She loves riding around like the big kids that she's always watched and sitting up where she can see everything.  And the cover keeps her from actually touching the kind of gross carts.  It's perfect!  
Sadie's already asleep for the night, so it's just about time for me to go to sleep too (at least I made it past nine o'clock).  I never know how much she's going to sleep, so I'm still a little nervous about staying up past ten.  

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Christmas Carols

Every Christmas it happens.  Or at least it has for the last few Christmases.  I sit in church and I try not to notice it.  But then we start to sing Christmas carols, which is one of my very favorite parts of the Christmas season.  I have loved singing Christmas carols my entire life and I know all the words to all the traditional carols (even if I can't carry a tune in a bucket).  I don't just know the first verse either.  Most of the them have four verses and after years in the Community Christmas Choir with Grumpa (who was then known simply as Dad) I can usually sing all four verses without glancing at a hymnal.  Sadie and I listened to the Chipmunks Christmas Carols, for the entire month of December.  

Now for my Christmas Carol rant.  The hymnals in our church are "gender inclusive."  This means that you can be happily singing Christmas Carols, enjoying the moment, and suddenly you realize that you have sung "and peace to men on earth" while everyone else has sung "and peace to all on earth."  It doesn't help me to look at the book.  These words are engraved on my brain and just come out this way.  Apparently, in the name of being Politically Correct, they had to change "men" to "all" because some overly sensitive women somewhere couldn't understand that when they said "peace to men on earth" they really did mean everyone (I think those of us who aren't looking for a fight may have realized that when we were three or four years old).  Anyways, it's not just one song (you don't realize how many songs have "man" "men" or "mankind" in them until they start changing the words to "all "us" and "all of us").  Now that I've gotten that out of my system for the 2008 holiday season...

Sadie and I are both feeling 100 times better today, which is surprising considering how little sleep we got last night.  Sadie woke up at 10:55 and then again at 12:30, 2, 4, and 6.  At six I finally gave up on sleep and got out of bed to start the day.  Maybe sleep deprivation makes my temper shorter when it comes to the whole Christmas Carol thing, but maybe not, I do remember it bothering me a lot last year too (only then I just blamed it on pregnancy hormones).  After mass Paul and I had oatmeal.  I didn't realize until I was halfway through my oatmeal that Sadie was opening her mouth each time I scooped up a spoonful.  She looked like a little fish gasping for air.  I don't think she could figure out why we were eating all of her rice cereal (she seemed pretty certain that it was her cereal).  I didn't finish my oatmeal after that because she looked so sad! 

Sadie has been eating apples for five days today, so we moved on to our next new food (we've done rice cereal, sweet potatoes, peas and apples so far).  Pears!  Pears got a little bit of a puckery face, though not quite as bad as apples.  Up next is either peaches, carrots or bananas!