Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Molar has emerged!

Tonight Maddy and I were rolling around the ground and nibbling (me) and giggling (her) and I peered into her wide open mouth. That angry swollen back gum is now angry, swollen AND has three of the four crowns of her molar peeking out. There is still a lotta gum to be broken through but the first molar is coming! The first molar is coming!

Tonight we had a blast reading and playing and snuggling. She wasn't nearly as fragile as she has been lately. Although this morning she woke at 550am and was a complete wreck. And then lost her marbles at an indoor playground, when baba made her leave. But back to the happy - she was her usual Maddy-ness tonight!

She has started calling her Roger (teddy) "Ogr" in one syllable. Always one syllable with her. Yesterday at dinner, instead of eating, she named her family over and over. Mum. Mum. Ddd. Ddd. Dgeeg. Dgeeg. Bab. Bab. Mum. Ddd. Bab. Dgeeg... It took me a long time to get used to the idea of a walking Maddy and now we're on the verge of a talking and communicating Maddy. It blows my  mind!

Awhile back I mentioned Maddy walking and throwing her hands up in her the air and I found a short video of it. It ends with my girl crawling into one of her favorite hang out places.



video

Monday, March 28, 2011

Wherefore art thou Roger?

I have looked back at the last few posts and most of them mention Maddy being fragile. And maybe Maddy has been more fragile lately. Maybe this is normal? But normal or not, she's awesome the way she is. 

Although the new normal seems to also be very very small meals and more food picky-ness. Before we'd put anything in her mouth and she'd happily eat. Put anything in front of her and she'd gobble it up. But now? She makes faces when we put something in her mouth and pulls it out and examines it. Often it gets thrown to the dogs. Literally. Meals are more about food squishing and throwing and less about consuming food. Oh, and wearing food as a hat. THAT one has resulted in near daily hair washing. I know this is a phase and she'll eat when she's hungry. And she's still healthy and chubby and doing well. But I MISS my awesome eater. 

And now, the title. What could that mean? Tonight I threw Maddy in the bath and tidied up. I put everything away and didn't see Roger (Maddy's sleep-teddy) anywhere. I assumed Roger was in the crib. I carried Maddy into her room. wrapped in her towel, and reached to grab Roger out of the crib. And Roger? Ro-o-o-o-o-o-ger? Where a-a-a-a-a-a-are you!? Roger, after some sleuthing, was figured out to be in baba's car. Maddy was in the house. I grabbed another blanket-teddy, a green one, and passed it to Maddy. Most nights I sing Maddy's lullaby as I back out of the room and see her lay down and snuggle in for sleep. Tonight I sang the song and backed out. And Maddy sat up, and looked for Roger. I sat in the living room and popped on the computer. And I could hear fussing. Then louder. Then louder... then crying. Wailing. My girl? She just wanted her Roger. I tried to calm her, offered her other teddy bear, other cloths or... anything. And finally? I called baba. And while I didn't ask, baba offered to come over and bring Roger home. Maddy grabbed Roger and began sucking her thumb. I am not going to say she settled immediately, but she has settled. It was a late start to the night and it's going to be a rough day tomorrow. 

It's official. Roger is important. And I've started thinking (aka freaking out just a little) about daycare and Maddy's naps there. We have a second teddy (Mimi) which we're going to try to make "nap teddy" as opposed to Roger the "night teddy". 

Does this ever get easy? 

But for certain, from now on? Roger's whereabouts will be accounted for. He will be on roll call ever 15 minutes or so. Maybe with RFID and GPS and tracking beacons. You know, whatever a mom needs to do to make bedtime easy. 

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Month fourteen letter

Dear Maddy,

You are now a pro walker! You are an official biped. Tonight we went to a friend's for dinner and there you met some stairs. And? You climbed them like a pro! Not a second of fear or hesitation. Just one step after another until you reached the top. But going down? Well, there was no fear or hesitation either - but you tried to go down them face first. That is when the fear showed on MY face. And this is just how you are. You are confident and know what it is you want. You have a spark and spirit that awes me. And you go and go and go and go. There is no stopping you or slowing you. Sometimes it exhausts us but it's always worth it. Always.

Fourteen months - it doesn't sound all that old but you really are more like a little girl, a toddler. And there is so much more growing ahead of you. Today we went to Toys R Us and bought you a few things, We got you a pink lawn chair and an Olivia doll and a green ball you think is just AWESOME and love rolling and playing with. And there mama and dada looked at all the fun toys in our...er... YOUR future. Dolls and bikes and slides... we'll get to relive being a child through watching our child grow up. And I think that is the real magic of having a child. All the fun and none of the personal insecurity. Wait... the first time a child hurts your feelings, it will break my heart more than it ever broke when someone was mean to me. And I know that day is coming soon, with daycare starting in just over 1 month.

Maybe this makes me a crazy mom, but I'll be calling the daycare this week to ask them if there is anything we should be teaching you. At daycare I know you'll be eating at a little table and chair, maybe off plates... right now you eat in a high chair and just on the table. I know you will have to have naps on a mat, now you're in your crib. You will have other kids to learn to play with and rules to follow. Now? Well, there are rules but everything revolves around you. I am scared about what things you will learn at daycare and what things we're trying to teach you will get unlearned. But I never had the chance to go to daycare and I went into school very meek and unsure socially. Maybe you'll be better prepared? Maybe that is (well, was) just my personality.

It's hard to know what the right thing is to do, my Nunu, until the outcome is seen. Then the right choice is obvious. I hope we're doing the right thing, for you. But I want you to know that never for a second do we take our responsibility to you lightly. We are always trying our best, to do what is best for you.

Well, daylight is long gone and the night is getting late. It's time for this ole mama to get to bed. Happy 14 months, my little girl. I almost typed baby girl...

I love you so much, Maddy.

Mum

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Hard...

Teething? She be hard.


But I have never loved anything more than this little girl.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

There are days that are...

... harder.

Today was one of those days. Mom was sick, so I was home with Maddy today. And the morning was ok. We went for lunch with dada. And then Maddy had a dirty diaper, and I forgot to pack diapers in the diaper bag and then had to run to the store and get more and the food took a long time and then Maddy wanted to walk around and had a fit when we couldn't let her. Ok. Then we came home. Maddy was grumpy and whiny and was rarely happy. She would whine to be picked up, then whine to be put down, then whine to touch something, then whine when she got it... The theme of the afternoon was whine. I tried to put her down for a nap and all I heard (for 45 minutes) was babble, babble, babble, UP (emphasis on the P), UP! UP! babble, babble, babble. Then when she came out? Back to the whine. I am hormonally fragile and was starting to get a headache. And the whining... Neil came home after a really tough day with a headache. It was a rough evening. We gave Maddy advil, then dinner and she was better. Not normal, but better. Her bath went well and she was down immediately.

I am thankful Maddy isn't always this grumpy, it makes me appreciate how awesome our girl normally is. But if this molar doesn't soon break skin? I am gonna... well... keep getting headaches from the whining, I guess.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

My most amazing husband and my most amazing morning

On the weekends Neil and I are supposed to alternate sleep-ins. But for a long time I was completely incapable of sleeping in. Even on our vacation in Kelowna, I would be up at 8am. Many weekends I would be awake before Maddy and when she woke, I'd roll over and get up. Even on the mornings where I was supposed to sleep in.

This morning, this glorious, glorious morning, I heard Maddy on the monitor at about 730am. I heard Neil roll over and get up. I turned off the monitor and snuggled back in, thinking I'd get another 10 minutes sleep. I opened my eyes again and it was 855am. I SLEPT IN UNTIL 9am!!!! Asking Neil, we figure it's been a loooong time since I was able to sleep in this late. Since about mid-pregnancy with Maddy. So... a year and a half? Two years? I have to say, it was refreshing! I feel RESTED. Although I had only about 30 minutes with Maddy in the morning before her nap time and I feel a little robbed of Maddy time. But? I SLEPT IN! I SLEPT IN!

Thank you, Neil, for taking her, amusing her and most importantly - turning off all the obnoxiously loud toys in the house so I could sleep in.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Smarter than?

Tonight Maddy was tired and fragile. More teething (I can't see how her molar can stretch her gum ANY more before it breaks). More tiredness (she was up at 615am, and was already having her first nap at 830am). More mood (no clue about why).

By 6pm she crawled under the table and laid on her side, head on her arm and looked exhausted. By 620pm she'd grabbed Roger, went into her room, shut the door and laid on the big pink teddy from my goddaughter at the foot of her crib and waited for bedtime. She put herself to sleep. Or as close as she could. Our dogs still whine at our feet to be escorted to their (always open) kennels to be put to sleep. Our daughter is now smarter than the dogs.

That didn't take long.


 Sherman
Walter

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

So lucky

When I come home I open the back door and call out, loudly, for my Maddy I can hear her squeal. Sometimes she comes to me in dada's arms. But those special days, Maddy will walk herself into the kitchen, arms held out and mouth open in pure joy! There is nothing more blissful to me than to see my daughter's face light up with pure and unfiltered happiness to see her mama. After the door closes behind me every morning, that is the moment I live for.

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Maddy is once again teething. I can see the top of tooth 8 (the fourth one on the bottom) right at the surface. That, plus the molar action plus still only one nap a day (in the morning) has meant a more fragile Maddy. Tonight she was upset about something and sitting on the floor and crying. She stopped, looked up at me and said "Mum. Up. UP!". Up. UP! She said up! She said it a few more times, through the night. Always with a slight emphasis on the "p". It's a glimmer of communication and it's beautiful to hear. 

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Tonight Maddy decided that chasing Sherman, and talking to him in her own quasi-bark, would be so much fun! She loved it and would run around and around the coffee table. Sherman, on the other hand, was confused and had no clue what to do. We watched closely and finally Sherman stopped and shrank in fear. Maddy walked up and gently (for a 13 month old) petted Sherman's face. And the game was done! Sherman survived and was relieved at the outcome. I think Walter was just SO VERY thankful it wasn't him being chased.

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In another little Maddy-ism tonight she decided to stomp around muttering and throwing her hands up in the air, in what appeared to be frustration. Foreshadowing to the teen years, where everything we'll do will exasperate her? For now, it's adorable. In 10 or so years, I'll wonder where she got this attitude from. Remind me, it started at 13 months. 

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Maddy's nose and finger have now met. One day, as I was changing her diaper, I looked into her face and noticed her right pointer finger happily nestled in her right nostril. Since then I have seen her finger there a few times - once as she held the ear of her Roger (comfort teddy) in her fist, thumb in her mouth and pointer finger in her nostril. Pictures should really be taken, for future public events.

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Future events... Maddy is going to be baptized/christened this summer. First, what is the difference between baptism and christening? And second, despite neither Neil or I being overly religious, it's vitally important to my parents. Neil and I would start to speak of it, then get hung up on who to ask to be godparents and then when we got to where/how to do it, it all would fall apart. Now, we have the person and location! Neil's uncle will come to Edmonton and do it! It means so much to us, that he can come. My mom, too, is overjoyed. Now, to pick those godparents... 

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Everyday with Maddy is pure pleasure, even when she's being a grump. Everyday I am so awed that I get to be her mom, to watch her grow and help her learn. I am not sure why I am so lucky - karma must be making up for the disastrous dating years - but whatever the reason I am the honoured to be her mum-mum-mum. I wouldn't change a thing at all.  

Sunday, March 13, 2011

She drew first blood...

Today Maddy fell. And bled.

Maddy was tottering around this afternoon, showing off for guests we had for brunch. Nothing was on the floor but she was having a wobbly day. And she lost her balance and fell. This is not unusual - she falls a lot - but this time she fell forward and to the side. Her chin landed on the coffee table and she bit her lip. Neil saw it and rushed forward and grabbed her. I heard the aftermath - the wail.

That's when it hit me... I am the MOM. I am the one who is supposed to know what to do. Every time something went wrong, my mom would be there to fix it. She always knew what to do. Always. Hell, I still call her when something goes wrong. And now I am the mom. Dammit. What do I DO?

I grabbed a washcloth and cooled it under water. Then held it up to dab the blood and see if she wanted to suck on it. When I pulled it away there were drops of red... and that is when my eyes filled with tears.Maddy then leaned forward and reached for her mama. I held her close, rocking her gently. And she quickly calmed. Very quickly. My eyes were still wet when Maddy was ready to go again. She wandered off, in search of something else to explore, and Neil and I stood there in shock. She was off but we were still shaken.

Maddy bled. She stopped bleeding. She's OK! We made it through this first (minor) injury. And, today for the first time I truly felt like a mom. I somehow knew what to do. And, yes, I called MY mom and asked her what I should have done, just to make sure.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

It's been awhile

I haven't said much about me lately. So, here's the (not so) interesting news about me.
  1. My professional life has been wonderful. My job isn't the most challenging in terms of work but the people are awesome and supportive and I am given respect for any ideas. The Ministry, too, is great. It's really a healthy environment! I feel that I could happily stay here for awhile. Although my job ends in November...  Here's hoping they can keep me on.
  2. Marriage is wonderful too. A new kiddo can really put a strain on a relationship, but it's only brought Neil and I closer together.There is no drama or stress. Just 2 ole married folks (who are also best friends) working together to raise a daughter. I have a wodnerful husband and I am so so so so lucky.
  3. There was a good stretch of time where I didn't see my girlfriends much. But the last few weeks I have been trying much harder to see them and it's been great for my mental health. Although it could also be that spring is ALMOST coming! Today and tomorrow are ick but then it should be spring temps (and flooding) for the next bit. And the increased sun has been awesome. It's so nice to arrive at work after the sun rises.
  4. The down-there-complications after Maddy's birth. They are pretty well under control. I have to go back to the doc and the physio just to make sure. But I am now good. Not pre-baby normal but normal for a person who pushed a kid with a head in the 98th percentile out her lady bits. So now normal.
  5. I thought I would like being a mom most of the time. But I was sure there would be moments (hours, days?) where I would long for the simplicity and selfishness being a non-mom gave me. But, so far, that has not at all happened. I love being Maddy's mom. Period. There are times (like when she refuses to nap during her ONE nap a day) that I get frustrated. But there is not a time where I have missed sleeping in, going out whenever I wanted to, having freedom more than I am happy being Maddy's mum-mum-mum-mum. And that, honestly, surprises me. I really thought I was more selfish and lazy than I am turning out to be.
  6. I stepped on the scale this morning. And the number was a HAPPY one! I am not just a hair lower in weight than I was when I got pregnant. I went to a store yesterday and bought pants. They are a size smaller than I have been wearing. It was a store that has a larger fit, but even a few months ago I was wearing the size up from what I bought. I have a goal in mind (12 pounds less than where I am now) and I'll continue to work to meet it. Although when I told my mom what my goal weight was, she looked me up and down and then gave me a range to aim for - with my goal weight at the TOP of that range. Baby-steps, baba! Just because I get to my goal weight doesn't mean I'll stop. And, to put it all in perspective, even at this new just -lower-than-pre-preggo weight? I am still JUST inside of overweight according to BMI.
And there is the quick and dirty on me. I am good. Awesome! Happy! Not very interesting stuff to blog about (they say that drama reads better) but I love my husband and daughter... I love my life! Now, I wonder how badly I'll jinx myself once I hit publish...

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

You can go back

Today Maddy and I went back to my old office to visit friends there. It was so great to see everyone! Maddy had a rough morning nap (as in a short one) and was a little grumpy when we left the house. I really had no clue how she'd do. But as soon as we got there, I took her out of the stroller and she was MOVING! Walking/running and  exploring all the new stuff. Diane, a coworker, was able to pick Maddy up and walk around the floor, showing Maddy off, as I caught up with someone. I kept watching and listening for Maddy, in case she got upset. Most kids? They would get upset away from their mom, in the arms of a stranger and in a new place. Not my girl. She happily visited people and was her usual charming self. They only time she got upset has when mama picked her up and tried to put her in the stroller, taking her away from her new friends and play-place.

Her outgoingness, while awesome, scares me too. A stranger can pick her up and carry her off in complete silence. She doesn't play shy... And my heart skips a beat at the thought of someone taking advantage of that. Maybe I spent too much time near policing and am being paranoid. Please tell me I am being paranoid. Please.

Moms/dads/people in the know, I have a question. Maddy's gums on the bottom. On each side, about half way along the gum line on the sides are 2 large and swollen nubs. Are those molars coming through? If not, very small aliens are emerging from her gums instead of her belly a la the movies... If they are teeth? OUCH!

Monday, March 7, 2011

VIDEO TIME! (insert MC Hammer melody here)

Well, it's a challenge to get a decent pic of Maddy. She's always mooooving. And there is minimal natural light now (so there is maximum flash lighting). And there is a decided lack of photoshop on my computer, to make the flash stop making Maddy look... odd. So? VIDEO TIME!

video

Well, watching that video it looks like it's time to retire that tight little shirt. You're growing so fast Maddy!

OK, OK imaginary voice in my head. I'll throw in a few (maybe not the cutest) pics too! Maddy loves crawling through the coffee table. She'll lay in there and play, she'll try to sit up and hit her head, she'll move forward and back.




Thank goodness she's so bendy!


I love you so much, my Nunu

I know every mom says this...

But I think our girl is smart! And even if it's normal, it blows me away how much she knows already.

We have a riding bus, that was a gift from Aunty Betty. Neil showed her how the seat opens up, and there is a little cubbyhole under there. Well, Maddy thought that was just awesome and loves putting thing inside it, shutting the lid then lifting it again to the object is still inside. Later stage object permanence!

Then yesterday at the playdate, Maddy found a toy that was similar to the riding school bus she has at home. Different shape and colours but the same idea. She walked up to it and immediatley picked up the seat, to look inside the cubbyhole. She extrapolated!

And then this afternoon she was playing in her room and discovered an empty drawer (we've been purging). She grabbed a book, put it in the drawer and closed it. Then waited... and opened the drawer again. And there was the book. Right where she left it. She looked at it for a second, with satisfaction, then left it there for good (and I got to put it away).

We are in the initial stages of 2-way communication. When I sing "Head and Shoulders, Knees and Toes" Maddy will start the motions, by patting her head (but has yet to make it to her shoulders, let alone her knees and toes). The other day Maddy caught our attention, and patted her head. And I sang the song. Her face lit up - she was able to tell me something. And I DID IT! Well, this has led to many repetitions of the song by mama, dada, baba AND dido. And I swear I can hear her softly say, under her breath, "Dance monkeys, dance". *grin*

It amazes me to watch my daughter grow and learn and discover. And those cognitive processes that I take for granted, I watch my daughter learn instinctively. It brings home how trully adaptive humans are.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Playdate day!

Today Neil and I went to a playdate, with some friends from my sing and sign group. One of the fabulous ladies arranged, at her church, a chance for us to all get together. There were 8 kiddos and their parents there, and so much room and toys and places to explore. And Maddy LOVED it. We put her down in a new room, filled with new people (not all of the ladies were from the signing group - some were from a mom's group) and I watched to see what she would do. And my girl walked away, towards the toys, and didn't look back. Other kids were hovering by their moms or crying when their moms were too far away. But not my girl. She didn't run to the new people, but she never shied away from them. She shows us everyday how strong and independent she is.

I read other mommy blogs, and there is one I read where sometimes it sounds like the mother (while she loves her child) she doesn't necessarily like her child's personality. That is definitely not true for me, about Maddy. I love her independent nature, I love how she knows what she wants, I love her desire to explore, I love her fascination with books and music, I love her quick smile and infectious laugh. These traits can sometimes lead to tantrums and an already thick stubborn streak. But I am thankful I not only love but like my child too.

Today we had a wonderful day with other moms and dads and kids. We got another chance to see our girl interact with the world. And tomorrow? Tomorrow baba and dido are coming over to help us go through all of Maddy's stuff. There will be boxes for a friend, who just had female twins, and boxes to give away to Goodwill, boxes to keep IF we have a second and boxes to keep, no matter what, for Maddy one day. There is a room FULL of stuff for us to go through. And baba and I have every intention to do it all in a few hours. Wish us luck!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

A new look!

A new look for the ole blog. Maybe the weather (omg the weather... the never ending cold weather...) has inspired change and voila! Likee?

Life otherwise is much the same. And Maddy continues to be awesome. But RUNNING awesome. Seriously, it's frightening to watch her run at (her) top speeds and ALWAYS something in her hands. I thought the thing that would inspire her to walk was going to be the chance to be mobile and carry something in her hands. Tonight we did a Costco run, there was no meat to be had, and I let Maddy down to walk. She thought it was so much FUN and proceeded to toddle away across the cement. The store was pretty empty (smart people stayed out of the cold) and Maddy had the room to go at top speeds. About 5 feet later, Maddy lost her balance and went down. Then started crawling towards a puddle of muddy slush... but she walked in a store!