Jan 19, 2010

Some long overdue videos

So, we have been pretty good about the pics, but not so great with the videos thus far.  Here are a few highlights taken on D's new iPhone (thanks Mom!).  We'll get the HD videos up one of these days.

Kate was pretty silent up until the afternoon of her four month doctor visit.  We had just told the doctor that morning that she wasn't really vocalizing a whole lot, and then we got this for the rest of the afternoon.  She hasn't stopped since.  Apparently she didn't like us talking about her to the doctor.

Ok, so this video is very random.  J and I were listening to NPR in the car and they were doing a report on Iran.  I was talking to J about Ahmadinejad and Kate heard me and started laughing.  She laughed for days every time we said his name.  Perhaps it is the funny voice or the fact that we are laughing.  Nonetheless, she apparently thought it was hi-lar-i-ous.  I hope his people don't see this and try to come and hunt us down.

Kate rolled over from tummy to back about a month ago, but hasn't done it since.  She has mastered the back to tummy roll.  Unfortunately, she isn't a huge fan of being on her tummy.

We started letting Kate play in her jumperoo a month or two ago (a little early... don't tell the doctor).  At first she would sit and bounce a little, but recently she has really gotten the hang of bouncing and thoroughly enjoys her time in it.  Unfortunately for her, though, she is going to outgrow it very soon.  She is already on the second height level and is quickly approaching the weight limit.  Anyone want to borrow a Rainforest Jumperoo until we have number 2?  As the video proves, this toy gets the Kate Ryan seal of approval.

Jan 17, 2010

Five Months

No excuses....moving on.

A lot has happened in the last month and a half, so let's hit the highlights. First, easy access to the pictures:
http://picasaweb.google.com/jaimeryan/Kate3Months (the most recent pictures)
http://picasaweb.google.com/jaimeryan/KateFans (people holding Kate, with updates)
http://picasaweb.google.com/jaimeryan/Kate When she was tiny (nothing new)

  • A few days after my last post, Kate visited the pediatrician for her four month checkup. The doctor was happy with her progress and not worried about her size....she happens to be a very big baby. The official measurement was 27 inches and 19 pounds, 12 ounces. She was wearing clothes and a diaper, so it was likely more like 19.5 pounds, but both measurements are still in the 100th percentile. By its definition, there's nothing higher than 100 percent, but her curves are far above those on the chart, which stop at 97 percent. Fortunately, she's still proportional and baby fat isn't concerning at this point. The one thing that D was a bit concerned about was Kate's lack of speech. Obviously she's not supposed to be talking at four months old, but she is supposed to be babbling and cooing and making non-crying sounds; the pediatrician said that some babies are just quieter than others, and to give it some more time.
  • Our appointment with the pediatrician was in the morning; by the afternoon, Kate wouldn't shut up. She found her voice and was talking up a storm. Ever since then, she's been a lot more vocal, and D's not worried in the slightest.
  • Another thing that the pediatrician told us is that Kate could start eating rice cereal at one meal per day, since she's obviously not lacking for nutrition and is sleeping through the night. The rules are still pretty strict....only one meal a day, only mixed with breast milk or prune juice, and only a quarter-cup. Her first food experience was about as expected...most of it ended up on her shirt. The second time, we took her shirt off before she ate, and then it ended up everywhere. We've been using bibs ever since, but she's also gotten much better at it; about three meals in, she had totally grasped the open-as-the-spoon-arrives, close-when-it's-in, swallow-when-it's-gone concept. Her face and hands still need a good scrub-down after every solid meal, but I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that she's good at eating, no matter what form it takes.
  • We initially started by mixing her rice cereal with breast milk, and then moved on to prune juice; apparently prune is the one type of juice that no infant has ever become addicted to, which is more than they can say for sweeter varieties like apple juice. She seemed really excited the first time she tried it, I suppose because it was something new. She managed to smear it all over herself (see the pictures below), and enjoyed her first several tries. Then we noticed that she started crying after every bite...we didn't know if she didn't like her booster seat, if she was tired of solid foods, or if she just wasn't hungry. After two meals like this (smile, bite, cry....smile, bite, cry), we went back to breast milk as an experiment, and that seemed to solve the problem. Apparently there's a reason kids don't get hooked on prune juice....it's disgusting.
  • Christmas was about a week after Kate's appointment. We had a great holiday, managed to drive around a tiny bit less than during past years, and even had Christmas dinner at our house. It's always been my favorite time of year, mostly because of the opportunity to get together with family; we weren't able to see everyone this year, but it was still a wonderful break from work.
  • We're spoiled at Christmas every year, but this was Kate's first opportunity to join in the fun. She got all kinds of clothes, lots of stuffed animals, and a couple of big items (check out the picture page). Throughout the season, Kate was able to wear some great winter-themed outfits. Santa hoods, reindeer costumes, penguin/snowman/Santa pajamas, etc. Fortunately they were almost all nine months, because she's wearing clothes way ahead of her actual age. She turns five months old today, and she's just about to move into 12 month outfits.
  • From a physical perspective, Kate's come a long way in the last couple of months. She has a lot more control over her limbs and interacts with her environment in a much more active manner. Though she rolled over once from tummy to back quite a while ago, she still hasn't replicted the feat; instead, she's focused on going the other way, from her back to her tummy. The good news is that she's now a pro....after doing it once or twice, she got to the point where she can do it whenever she wants. The bad news is that she still doesn't particularly enjoy being on her stomach, so she rolls over and then gets frustrated. A couple of times, we've found her on her stomach and turned around in her crib in the morning, whining at her predicament.
  • Kate's really enjoying her toys at this point....she can grab them, pass them from one hand to the other, and even toss them away. When propped up in a Bumbo-like chair or sitting up in our laps or next to us on the couch, she can keep herself occupied for a while with a couple of toys. Of course, her favorite game is "How can I get this in my mouth?" She's definitely in her "oral phase," and will put literally anything in her mouth, including her toys, her hands, her feet, our hands, our shoulders, our arms, etc. She's a little less fixated on her pacifier than she used to be, but that just means she's less picky.
  • When D went back to work in November, we had help from our moms with the baby. It was great, but unfortunately we couldn't ask them to do that forever. In January, we switched Kate to day care every other day; she's at a house next to D's high school, in a day care run by a teacher's wife. They have seven kids of their own (six are in school), and are great with Kate...we've been really happy with it so far.
  • In the weeks just before and after Christmas, almost everyone we know got sick, and we were no exception. D got it first, then I got it....and I've kept it for the last three weeks. Earlier this week, Kate got it too. At first it was just a little sneezing and stuffiness, but then we could tell it was getting worse. D took her to the doctor and she was diagnosed with double ear infections. Growing up with lots of ear infections, I know how uncomfortable it can be, but she's been a real trouper.
  • She's now taking two doses of amoxicillin per day, and she hates it. Apparently she's too young to appreciate its bubble gum flavor, because she's been making it as difficult for us as possible. It's a liquid dose, delivered orally via a syringe; she completely spit out her first dose, right onto her shirt. Since then, we've tried mixing it with milk, mixing it with rice cereal, mixing it with prune baby food, sneaking it in when she's half-asleep and docile, and finger-feeding her with a tiny tube attached to the syringe.....no dice. The rice cereal has been the most effective, but we can tell she still tastes it, and she makes faces and squirms. She's starting to feel better, though she's still stuffy with a head cold and a runny nose.
  • Since she's been a little stuffy, she hasn't been that excited about drinking from a bottle either....it's possible that it hurts when she swallows, or that the pressure is too much for her ears. Two days ago, Kate saw D drinking water and reached for her cup. After we let her have it enough to demonstrate that she knew what to do, we got a little shot glass for her to drink from. She's not quite ready to do it with her own hands (she tends to shove the whole thing in her mouth), but she's definitely able to drink from a cup. It's still messy....we put a bib on her for her second try....but it's interesting to see her learn new things just by watching us.
  • When she was at the pediatrician for her ears, she also got a new official weight....21 pounds, 2 ounces. Big girl.
  • Because she's so big and has so much control of her body (for her age), we've been introducing new experiences. She loves her bouncer, she likes sitting in her faux-Bumbo, and she's even pretty good at staying sitting up once she's raised into that position. I've been putting her on the couch next to me, and she sits there on her own while we play with a toy or read a book....it's darn cute. Yesterday we put her in a high chair at a restaurant for the first time. She did a great job, she was happy throughout, and she looked completely comfortable. She was even smiling at a 14-month old sitting in a high chair across the aisle.....they looked like they weighed about the same.
  • I'm about caught up, but there was plenty of other stuff that's happened in the last month that I'm sure I've overlooked. We got to watch Kate's Auntie JJ become a three-day Jeopardy champion (we went to the filming back in November), we had lots of visitors (check out the KateFans page), I've had a lot to do for work (more on my trip to Delaware later), D's taking Kate to an infant play group every other week, etc, etc, etc.
  • Okay, it's 8am and I haven't really slept much, so I guess I'll end this now. Check out the pictures below, but remember they're just a teaser for the picture site linked above.
Here's one of Kate's Christmas presents (the chair), hand-made and beautiful.

Here's one of Kate's first experiences with prune juice-based rice cereal. Every baby has a "messy face" picture, and I'm sure she'll dig into a chocolate cake with her bare hands at some point and produce another outrageous photo, but this one's pretty good for now.

Kate really enjoys when we read to her, and she always tries to grab the book while we do. From day one, she's held them pretty well, with one hand on each side....she's a born reader.

Here she is yesterday in a high chair at a restaurant. Being at the table made her feel all grown up, and she kept herself occupied the entire time.

We decided to use some of our Christmas money to upgrade our camera, so we have a great new DSLR speeding its way to our house on a UPS truck. Hopefully this will mean better (and probably more) pictures of Kate. Lucky you!