Monday, September 29, 2008

Inherited Personality Traits?

This is what I found this morning when I went to wake Ella up. Where is she, you ask? I have suspected that she inherited my morning disposition, but these pictures give me solid evidence. She covered her head with the blankets because the lamp was on. I know this because her head was out when I got up to take a shower in the dark. While Dave is getting ready, he turns on the lamp and she starts scooting around in bed. When he kissed her goodbye, he adjusted the covers and did not turn off the lamp. Then I went to wake her up and found her completely covered. I know it's because of the light because I do the same thing when he turns the light on while I'm still sleeping.

In addition to covering her head to block the light when she isn't ready to get up, she also doesn't want a lot of talk in the mornings. Which is fine, because I don't either. She might manage a smile for me once she pries her eyes open, but she doesn't want any funny business. Just change the diaper, put on the clothes, and get down to eating. Once the tummy is full, she is happy to start her day, but don't expect anything before then.

It took Dave a while to learn that I am not a happy morning person, and the more you talk to me and the louder and peppier you are about it, the grouchier I become. I have to have a shower before there is any human interaction, and then I need it to be kept to a minimum. Now, if I'm left to wake up on my own time, I'm happy to start my day cheerfully, but when I have to get up with the alarm - keep your distance. Apparently, my daughter will be the same way. I'll be honest, I'm glad about it. I don't think I could handle another person in my house who jumps out of bed ready to rock at all hours of what can hardly be considered morning.

The sweet princess has also inherited a trait from her father. The man gives no warning of transistion when he is ready to eat/leave/do something, etc. He goes from happy, mellow hanging out to packed up and ready to leave a place in under a minute. It's amazing to me, and often a source of conflict seeing as how I don't get a warning when something is about to change and I'm often to slow to react. Like her father, the child can be happily playing or talking or singing one minute, and screaming-at-the-top-of-her-lungs mad the next because she's just decided she is starving to death. You will read that babies give cues before they start to cry, and that if you pay attention you can meet their needs before they start crying. Crying is the last cue. That was true when she was brand new, but now, the fits come virtually without warning. It's amazing to watch the transistion. I often tell her that tiny babies don't starve to death in a matter of minutes. She begs to differ.

I haven't posted any pictures in a while, so here are a few from around the house.

This is AFTER she has eaten in the morning, when she is content to chat with me while I eat.

I'm not sure if you can see it through the red gleam, but there is abject terror in Georgia's eyes here. I can see her thinking, "WHAT?! Why are you putting that thing on me? I can't be responsible for that!" I had to force her to stay while I took the picture. I tried to get a second one, but I had to catch the baby as George jumped off the couch. : )
No animals or infants were harmed in the making of this photograph. After the bath (her bath, not mine, obviously).

Friday, September 26, 2008

One More Reason to Breastfeed Your Baby

Have you paid attention to the news lately? Babies in China are DYING because of tainted milk powdered that is used to make formula. Others are deathly ill. Can you imagine?

I was horrified about the massive dog food recalls and the number of dogs that were dying because of that contamination scare. I was terrified of feeding Georgia dog food, and actually did lots of research and changed food because of it. I seriously considered a RAW diet for her. I could not imagine losing my dog because of something I fed her that was made for her.

I felt strongly enough about my dog to change her food; the thought of something like that happening to my child is beyond my comprehension. I'm so very thankful that God equipped my body to feed my child. I don't have to worry about what is in her food because I already know - I'm making it. Even if I am affected by contaminated food, she will not be.

One of the greatest gifts God has given to mothers is the ability to breastfeed their children. I wish that more mothers would choose to do so - for so many reasons.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Wonder of Modern Technology

While I was away on maternity leave, my team moved to a new building with snazzy, automatic bathrooms. The toilet flushes for me, the faucet turns itself on, the soap dispenser dispenses soap at the mere sight of me, and the paper towel holder rolls one out without me touching a thing. Ahh, life is good with an automatic bathroom! Just think of all the germs I don’t have to touch anymore!

As convenient, sanitary, and cost-efficient as all of that is supposed to be, I kind of miss stomping on the flush lever of the regular old toilets (You didn’t think I would touch that with my hand, did you?). I think I am automatic toilet handicapped. On my first trip to the bathroom on Monday, the toilet flushed as soon as I sat down on it. Before I had finished my transaction, it flushed again. TWO flushes in a two minute timeframe! It seems that 2 out of 3 times that I use an automatic toilet, it is flushing WHILE I’m still sitting on it. And this doesn’t even account for the times that I’m wearing hard-to-unbutton pants! How does one relax in an automatic toilet stall? Personally, I feel pressured to move as quickly as possible in order to be off of the toilet before it decides to flush. Just picture the race that happens every time I enter a stall with one of these new-fangled toilets.

Enter stall, lock it quick! (It won’t lock! Now it is!), stand as far from toilet as possible, unbutton pants (They won’t unbutton! Try again – there, finally!), pants down, sit on toilet, transact business, clean up, jump off quick! And FLUSH! Pheww! I made it.

Only, sometimes I don’t make it and there aren’t many grosser things than a toilet flushing while you are using it. The last time I traveled for work, there was a day that every airport toilet I used (in three different airports, mind you) flushed while I was still using it. There must me something wrong with me. Does anyone else have this problem? Don’t even get me started on the automatic soap dispenser that withholds soap until you perform the exact right, pleading give-me-some-soap dance in front of it, and then it continuously spits it on you the entire time you are battling to rinse said soap from your hands under the automatic faucet that only turns on half of the time you stick your hand under it.

All I know is, the day they make toilet paper holders self-dispensing, I’m doomed.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Two Down, One to Go

I just thought I lived for the weekends before I had a baby. :) I cannot wait to spend the day tomorrow watching her smile and laugh. I have missed that child so much.

So far we are both doing okay with this new routine. Well, Ella is doing wonderfully, but I'm just okay. It's so hard to leave her in the mornings and so hard to put her down in her bed at night because I have approximately 3 waking hours with her. I won't lie; I hate it. Someone else gets the best of her during the day and I get the worn out baby in the evenings. There are two consolation prizes for that, of course: 1) I get her when the harness is off and she's so happy to kick her legs and have a bath and 2) it's my mothers who get the best of her, not a complete stranger who is responsible for ten other kids at the same time. I can live with that if I have to, and I have to. :)

She spends her days reading books with Grandma, and she absolutely loves it! I'm so happy that she loves books already. When I got there to pick her up yesterday, they were on the porch reading, and I could hear her reading along. :) It's amazing to me that she already loves to listen and look at the pictures.

The second day was the hardest for me because, after putting her to bed on the first day I was facing the stark reality of how little I would be seeing her during the week. Knowing that she is happy during the day and that she's taking the bottle without issues makes me feel better. Yesterday, she actually refused the last bottle and waited for me to get home to nurse her, so that made me feel great! Most of my worries about leaving her are gone now, I'm just dealing with guilt because those giant eyes look at me imploringly in the mornings, and that toothless smile takes up her whole face and I think to myself, "How can I possibly leave this child?" even though I know she's getting the best care possible (second to myself, of course). I was warned of the guilt, but there's no explaining that feeling to someone who isn't a mother who has left her child to go back to work.

Here's that toothless grin. This is my new favorite picture of her. Those eyes are so expressive. You can already see the devilment in her in this picture. :)

Monday, September 15, 2008


When we let the dog off of the leash we yell, "Freeeeedoooom!" as she runs down the street to our house. That's what I felt like yelling today when the doctor told us we can start weaning out of the harness!! We start with two hours of freedom a day and increase that time by two hours each week until we get to 12 hours a day. She will have another ultrasound done in 6 weeks, and hopefully then she'll just have to wear it at night for a while. Her right hip has improved from 40% coverage to 65%, and her left hip improved from 30% to 55%. That is great improvement and it's right on track for what the doctor expected to see at 6 weeks. Normal is between 65 and 70%, so we aren't far from normal at this point. We also got a brand new harness because when he adjusted the old one he decided we needed a bigger one. It's amazing to think the old one was ever as sparkling white as this one. :) We'll start dirtying it up right away, though I will leave the socks in this one for a while since the weather will start getting cooler soon. Oh, and in case you are wondering, I did keep the old one for posterity. It's in her keep box (that's the box of randomness that I'll be keeping all her life). I'm so excited because bath time is back!

We had a bridal shower at our house yesterday for a friend of ours, and Ella was so good. I had been telling her all weekend that we were having a girl party (or a panty party, as Dave calls it), and she was taking it all in. She sat in her chair in the kitchen and watched and watched as we all buzzed around her getting ready and then cleaning up afterward. She did great with a house full of strange women in her face, cooing over her. Here are some pictures of the occasion.In this one she looks like she wants to eat my cake. She did watch in wonderment while I iced it on Saturday.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Fountains of Puke

We had an exciting weekly Wal-Mart trip last week. I was wearing Ella, as I usually do in Wal-Mart, and she was staying awake to see everything. This is a fairly new thing she does since she really doesn't want to miss a thing. We were standing on the baby aisle, picking out nipples in preparation for my return to work. Imagine my surprise when I felt a warm, squishy feeling INSIDE the wrap. She had puked a puddle in there. I folded it down so that her head was exposed and she proceeded to continue puking all over the floor in Wal-Mart. We had to get a lady with a mop to clean it up. And, since this was the first time I've ever gone into Wal-Mart without the diaper bag (of course), I did not have a change of clothes for her. She had to go naked (in public!) through the rest of the store. Needless to say, our shopping trip was cut short. I was covered in puke, she was naked, and I just needed to get out of there. :)

She woke up during church this week and tried to engage Dave in conversation during the special music and preaching. She kept smiling really big at him and talking to him. When he would turn away from her, she would smile really big again to try to get him to look at her again. It was so cute. I ended up taking her out of the service because she was getting very enthusiastic and she cued to nurse. It was lunch time, and everyone knows that tiny babies starve to death in a matter of minutes. She can go from smiling and happy to starving, mad in half a second. I understand, the hunger hits me like that, too. :)

I know I've said it before, but I feel like my life is passing before my eyes as I watch her grow up. In the last week she has become such a big girl! She's staying awake and happy most of the day, she talks and smiles when people talk to her (even people she doesn't know), she can sit up in my lap and look all around with minimal support, I can carry her on one arm without supporting her head and back anymore, and she wants you to hold her standing up so she can see everything. It's amazing to see how much she has developed in such a short time. She is so alert and she hardly misses anything. Oh, she has starting paying close attention to the pets and she smiles when they come close to her. I could (and sometimes do) just sit and talk to her all day long. Lord have mercy on me when I go back to work because I am going to miss her so, so much.