Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Lots of new skills today!

After being too timid to actually walk with her new walking toy yesterday, Leah decided to go for it today! I cleared a path in the living room and put it in front of her...she took a few steps on her knees...and then got up onto her feet and kept going. I turned the walker around and she went the other way. And back and forth and back and forth.

I figured that if she was enjoying it in the apartment without much space and thus a short way to go each time that she'd be psyched to go in the hallway. Nope. She was truly unhappy with me when I brought her and the walker out in the hall. She crawled around; sat and pouted; and then decided to get a move on. She climbed up the stairs (there are 5 steps in the hall between us and the elevator). Then she turned and tried to go down arms first...I stopped her. We've been working on how to go down steps in baby gym class. But she hadn't seemed to grasp it yet. I showed her a couple times in class today and then a couple times in the hall by moving her legs to go down the steps basically the same way she moves them to go up the steps. All of a sudden it clicked...and she went down the stairs...easily and pretty quickly.

Of course I always stand directly behind her as she does it, but I let her go up and down and up and down. And then suddenly she decided she wanted to walk. She got up behind the walker and went down the hall. Other than veering off to the left a lot, she was very good at it. And every time she'd get close to the wall I would push the walker a bit and get her back on a straight path. She went back and forth and up and down and back and forth. It was lots of fun...and very tiring.

Calmer earlier in the day...hanging out and feeding the baby:
Then Leah got moving with the walker:
Walked it right into Rusty's lap...and gave him a little pat on the nose to apologize:
Turned around and went back the other way:
Out in the hallway...learning to climb down the stairs:

My brave little girl

Leah had her shots on Monday. Since she was sick at her 12 month appointment we waited to get her scheduled immunizations until she was feeling better. We went in Monday and she got MMR, pneumonococal, and varicella vaccines.

She started the silent scream when the first needle went in...and continued while the next 2 went in. As soon as they were all done, the real scream came out. But it only lasted a few seconds. I gave her a sippy cup of water...and she calmed right down.

And luckily this round of shots didn't cause any reactions so far. Apparently the MMR can cause a reaction 7-10 days we're not out of the woods yet. But with previous vaccinations Leah was always tired and feverish for a couple of days after.

This was before she had her shots...but isn't she so cute giving Rusty kisses:
Monday afternoon (post-doctor's appointment) Leah used a friend's walker...and loved it:We tried using Leah's walker on Tuesday...but it was a no-go...we did get some practice on her riding toys though:She had a bit of a diaper leak Tuesday she got to spend a little time playing around the apartment sans-pants:Apparently she really likes going pants-less:

Friday, February 20, 2009

Changing sleep schedule again?

I've been trying to figure out whether Leah is trying to move to 1 nap or whether she still needs 2. For weeks now she's been frequently fighting her afternoon nap...not always...but often. Sometimes she'll play or cry in the crib for 30 minutes to an hour and then I'll give up and get her up...hence no afternoon nap. But sometimes she'll go right to sleep and nap for an hour.

But the kicker really is that when she takes her afternoon nap she usually plays for a long time in the crib at bedtime...from 7 p.m. until 8 or even 8:30 p.m. The problem being that then she wakes up earlier. It's the whole sleep begets sleep principle. If she stays up later she wakes up earlier, gets less sleep, gets cranky. But on days when she doesn't take the afternoon nap, she falls asleep pretty quickly at night and sleeps until at least 7 in the morning...gets her 12 hours of sleep. But on those days she's also generally cranky in the late afternoon / evening.

So maybe it's time to push her morning nap to midday and lose the 2nd nap? I decided to try it out yesterday. She woke up about 6:40 a.m. She had breakfast a little after 7...big breakfast. She started to fuss a little around 9 a.m. so I gave her a sippy cup of milk. She drank pretty much the whole thing. And then she continued playing happily. We missed music class on Tuesday since she was we went to a make-up class at 10:15. We got home about 11:15 and she had lunch at 11:30...her normal amount lunch. After lunch she was definitely tired but not fussy or anything. I put her in the crib at noon. She pretty much went right to sleep.

I was hoping she'd take a nice long nap...but no, she woke up about 1:35 p.m. An hour and a half is a good morning nap for her...but if she's only taking one nap it really ought to be 2-3 hours. She also woke up fairly unhappy. I'm not sure whether she woke up hungry or if something else was bothering her, but I gave her a sippy cup of milk. She drank it and was happy after. She then had a normal happy afternoon. Around 4:30 she started to fuss a bit and I gave her a snack. Around 5:30 she started to fuss a bit and I gave her dinner. She was fine during dinner and getting ready for bed and everything...not really any different than on a 2 nap day.

Shafi put her to bed at 7 p.m. and she played in the crib until about 7:30 p.m. Certainly that's longer than I thought she would play...but still better than she does on a 2 nap day. And this morning she woke up at 7:10 a.m. So she got almost 12 hours of sleep. So I wasn't sure whether we'd stick with the 1 nap schedule or not...figured I'd play it by ear. I have been told by friends that their kids went back and forth from day to day for awhile before settling on 1 nap...some for a couple of months.

So this morning she started rubbing her eyes and showing other signs of being tired by about 8:30. I poured her milk around 9 and gave it to her in her room with the lights low as part of a pre-nap routine...she went right to sleep when I put her down at 9:15 a.m. And she napped for just over 2 hours! Then after playgroup this afternoon she was definitely ready for a nap. She had her milk in her room again and went right to sleep at 3:45 p.m. She only napped a little over a half hour and woke up pretty unhappy. She perked up after having a little snack, but she was definitely fussy this evening, including during dinner...and she didn't eat very well.

She was fine during bathtime and getting ready for bed. And she drank all her milk and was in the crib and went right to sleep about 6:45 p.m. So I'm not sure whether the evening fussiness was from having less sleep yesterday or from being so active at playgroup and just being worn out. I guess I'll see how she does tomorrow...and continue to play it by ear from day to day whether she needs 1 nap or 2.

Leah looking very serious as she waits for her Baba to emerge from the bedroom...she's been in an I-only-want-Baba mood a lot lately:
Leah sitting in her chair drinking her morning milk: Leah standing in her chair drinking her afternoon milk:
Leah cuddling with her baby:
Leah playing with her activity cube...concentrating very intently on moving the cars back and forth through the door:

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

We are constantly amazed by Leah's fast growing vocabulary and skill set

She'll be ready to take the SATs in no time...all she needs is a few more words, some reading and writing, math skills...oh, I guess we'll have to start with teaching her how to hold a pencil without eating it...we'd better get one without an eraser so we don't have to worry about her biting it off and choking on it. Do you think they let your parents carry you in and put you in the desk to sit for the test? Because Leah is not walking yet. My hopes of her taking her first steps on her first birthday were dashed. But that's pressure Leah...I know you'll walk eventually.

Meanwhile, her word list just keeps growing. Last week she started saying bye bye while waving - definitely proper usage. Pronunciation could use a little work...sounds like ba ba...but hey, in context we totally know what she's saying. She also added to her fast growing list of animal sounds. She's been saying quack and moo for awhile. Now she can also baa like a sheep and woof like a dog.

She's been referring to her lovey, a little pink puppy blankie that she cuddles with when she sleeps, as pup pup for awhile now. But in the last few days she's started saying pup-pee. She says it over and over again...obviously she's quite proud of herself for saying it right. Along with this new "ee" sound come several other words. I haven't added them to the list because we're really not so sure she gets the meaning - but she frequently says dah-dee, bay-bee, and mom-mee. She does put in quite a pause between syllables...but lets not be too picky here. Every time she says mommy I get very excited...but alas I can't quite tell whether she means me.

The other "ee" sounds she's added are very fun. There's a song in music class called Me You and We. She now says me me me when it comes on...and then later in the song she says we we we. And last week she started pointing to herself - poking herself in the chest actually - and saying me me me. That's what we do when we sing the me part of the song in class, so I'm not really sure whether she understands the meaning or if she's just imitating the hand gesture from class. She's also started fussing "me me me me me" - where before she mostly fussed "na na na na na." That one still makes the rotation, but it's nice to have some variety. We're really not sure whether she means anything by either of those, other than to draw attention and get something she wants...and most of the time we can't tell what that is and we aren't so successful at meeting her request, but rather we just distract her with something else.

Her comprehension is growing even faster than her spoken vocabulary. A couple weeks ago she was playing with a cup and I asked her if it was a hat...and she put it on her head. She now does that very consistently...I guess she knows what a hat is. After noticing that she was interested in other girls' baby dolls, I decided we really ought to get one for Leah. I had some things to exchange at Toys R Us, so we picked out a very cute Carter's baby doll and got it a little stroller, a change of clothes, and milk and juice bottles. Leah definitely seemed interested in the doll in the store, and when we got home and took it out of the package, she immediately grabbed it and hugged it. We're calling it her baby...and she's Mommy Leah. She was sitting there with the doll and the milk bottle, but not holding the bottle, and I said, "I think the baby's hungry. Do you want to feed the baby?" And she immediately picked up the bottle and tried to hold it to the baby's was adorable! She seems to really be enjoying taking the baby's hat off and trying to put it back on, rocking the baby back and forth in the stroller (and sometimes dumping it out of the stroller), feeding the baby, and cuddling with the baby. She's been sort of biting the top of it's head...I'm not quite sure whether she's trying to bite or trying to give it kisses...but I'm pretending it's kisses.

She also continues to gain dexterity...getting better and better at picking up food and getting it into her mouth, even when it's soft or shaped oddly. She loves putting the roll-around balls into the gumball machine and she can now put the blocks onto the train. She's still not so interested in stacking the rings back on her stackers, but I think she could if she wanted to. And she's getting pretty good at turning pages of board books. We love that she is so into her books...she seems to really enjoy sitting or standing with a book and turning through the pages, often babbling along pretending to read, even pointing at things on the pages as she goes.

Is it a hat?

We took Leah to the big Toys R Us in Times Square to get her birthday surprise (they send you a card in the mail to bring into the store if you join Geoffrey's Birthday Club). Her birthday surprise was a balloon and a hat and a free ride on the ferris wheel. We all had lots of fun on the ferris wheel. This actually is a hat...but Leah refused to wear it...she was in the process of taking it off in this one:

Mommy Leah's first moments with her baby...I think the baby needs to you want to feed the baby?
The real reason we bought a 2nd outfit for the baby is because it came with a hat and booties...Leah loves hats...but just like she doesn't want to wear hats...she immediately took the baby's hat off:
But wait, maybe the baby's head is cold...she put the baby's hat back on...and sat back to admire her work:

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Leah's 1 year check-up

Well, Leah has a stomach virus...again. So we still had her 1 year check-up today. But we are holding off until she's healthy to give her the vaccinations. Doc said Leah is right on target in her development - way up high on the scale of talking, babbling, comprehending - right on target for motor skills and such.
She's 32 inches tall - still off the charts - i.e. >97 percentile. And she's 21 lbs 15 ounces. So basically 22 pounds - and if she hadn't had diarrhea and vomiting I think she'd have been a little I'm going with 22 pounds. And according to my mother, that's what I weighed at a year as well. I guess she's mommy's little girl...even though she seems to be just like daddy in every other way. So that's 64th percentile in weight - slightly lower than last weigh in percentile - but pretty similar. Meanwhile her head just keeps growing - 46.8 cm now - which is the 90th percentile - maybe she is daddy's little girl. But the doctor said that it's good that her head has grown - it's in proportion to her being tall.

Monday night Leah was feeling fine...and we tried giving her more of her birthday cake. She wasn't all that interested...but she ate a little:
Once again she seemed to dislike the texture of the icing:
Well, she didn't want to eat it anyway...but she did play with it again:
And rub it on her face...which she was very amused by:
So amused that she really tried her best to keep me from wiping it off:

And given her unhappiness caused by her stomach virus, we have no pictures from yesterday...this very sad picture from this morning is plenty of documentation of how miserable she looked...and this was taken while she was watching cartoons:

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Leah is a year old!

How am I old enough to have a 1 year old daughter?! But wait, this isn't about me. Leah turned 1 yesterday. She got gifts from Shafi and I in the morning. And then she had a birthday party at noon. I think she had a good first birthday.

She got some great gifts. We got her a little pink armchair with her name on it, a very big teddy bear from FAO Schwartz, and a little piano. She loved them all of course. And at her party she got all sorts of great gifts including a couple of riding toys, a bath toy, some musical instruments, some adorable clothes, crayons and paper, and various other great stuff.

We had 14 adults and 4 babies at the party. We had brunch - bagels and lox, quiche, and fruit. And of course we had plenty of cake. My mother and I baked 2 cakes - 1 that looks like a butterfly and another rectangular cake that we cut into 2 so that 1 was Leah's very own smash cake. Decorating all 3 cakes took a long time...but they turned out great.

Of course we were hoping that Leah would really dive into her cake...but she was a bit intimidated by it. She dunked her fingers in the icing and then wanted no more to do with it. We saved it for her...and we'll see if she's up for trying a bit more tomorrow.

And in honor of turning 1, her 8th tooth came in today. She's now got 4 on top and 4 on the bottom.

Leah sat in her new chair and Baba presented her new bear:

I brought Leah out after Shafi dressed her in her pretty party dress and combed her hair so nicely:Leah enjoyed showing off her new piano at her party:
Leah and Baba showing off their party hats:Leah needed some help blowing out her candle...but that's to be expected:
Hmm - Leah wasn't so sure what to do with it after sticking her hand in the icing:
Yay - Leah had a fun time at her party:Having lots of fun in the tub at the end of the day...and showing off that 8th tooth (and notice the Mom-styled baby mohawk):