29 June 2010

We Have a Well Baby














We learned at Daphne 18 month appointment today that she finally weighs 20lbs! It is now officially legal that she can face forward her in car seat. We're not in any hurry to switch her around, especially since it's encouraged that kids face backwards until they are two. Plus it's kind of nice in a way that she can't see me when we're driving. When she sees me she tends to whine a lot and want me to get things for her.

Daphne is in the 3rd percentile for height (20.3 lbs), 0 percentile for height (26.5 in) and her head continues to amaze us by being in the 90th percentile. But here is an interesting tidbit for anyone who cares...her doctor plugged her into his brand new percentile chart for children with achondroplasia where she is 50th percentile for height and and 0 percentile for head size. What do you know, in some circles she may actually be considered tall.

And just because, here is Daphne one year ago at her 6 month visit. She had shorter hair back then.

24 June 2010

On Being 18 Months Old

I am lovin' being mama to an 18 month old. Especially one who likes to do ballet.


















I love this stage she's in of learning to talk. Daphne says pretty much everything now, so if I wanted to make a list it would be better to make it of what she doesn't say. Like I don't think she's ever said 'scuba diver.' Or 'crematorium.' My favorite of her words, though, are 'robot,' 'avocado,' and 'shower.' I don't know why; I think the way she says them are just so funny. I also love that she says 'hello' every time the phone rings.

My favorite thing is how her sleeping is about 1 million times better than it used to be. When I think back to a year ago and how stressful last summer was with all the screaming and crying and waking up all night long...oh my, I cringe a little inside. But now she consistently sleeps at least 12 hours straight each night, and takes a 1-2 hour nap every afternoon. We take her to her room, snuggle for a minute, lay her in her bed, leave, and she goes to sleep. So, so, so, so wonderful. The agonizing months of sleep training were worth it.

Daphne seems to be a bit happier with life, too. I don't know what it was, but I feel like she smiled maybe 3 times her first 6 months of life. She actually smiles every day now, and even laughs every day, which is good for me. There's nothing like a constantly grouchy baby to make you feel like the worst mom ever.

She's not grouchy here, just amazed at how loud Brynner can be while barking at absolutely nothing.


















I would say my biggest struggle is the fact that she is still not great at entertaining herself. She's better, definitely, as her attention span lengthens and especially now that she can get herself anywhere she wants to go, but she would much rather have someone's full attention on her at all times. It's not an independence issue, more that she is very social and likes to have someone play with her. I've found that if I keep myself busy moving around a lot, she is better at following me around and kind of entertaining herself as she finds items around the house to distract her. But as soon as I sit down, she is right at my feet, whining for me to pick her up. I've decided that this is OK because it keeps me busy getting work done, as opposed to sitting and reading a magazine or something while she plays. I would love to read a magazine, but it's probably better to work. Of course it also means that any work I do must be something that keeps me moving, like dusting the furniture, as opposed to something that keeps me in one spot, like folding laundry or doing the dishes. Let's just say I dust the furniture a lot.

The only developmental delay Daphne has is in walking. We can all understand why: she's wearing 1-inch platform heals that keep her from being able to move her ankles. I probably wouldn't be able to walk, either. She doing well with balancing; she walks easily along the furniture or pushing her little push-cart, and she lets go to stand alone or even stands herself up in the middle of the floor. She's just not quite balanced enough to take a step.

Several people have asked lately if Daphne will ever be able to walk on her own. I'll be honest when I say it had never even crossed my mind that she wouldn't. I was completely surprised to have even been asked that. I don't know if this is a good or bad thing, but I tend to forget that there is anything 'wrong' with Daphne. She is so terribly normal that I forget to even think that she's any different from the other children we hang out with. I guess I forget that others don't see her in that same light.

Not to mention, does anyone ever have a child and then raise them to think about what they can't and won't be able to do? I hope not, and we are no different. It's one of the reasons I am glad that there has been no diagnosis made for the type of skeletal dysplasia she has and why we haven't actively pursued finding one. Can you imagine being told the box you were going to live in? To be told what you should expect from life? We expect Daphne to live and be and do. We do not actively look for limitations.

Whoa, that was a tiny little soap box I just jumped on to (stop judging my kid!) so I'll just finish by saying, we've made it 18 months, and we're pretty happy with it. We're going to keep her for sure.

22 June 2010

How We Spent the First Day of Summer

I hope it's OK to admit that I don't really have a soft spot in my heart for hard, physical labor. It's hard. My muscles are weak and I am wimpy. David is a pro at physical labor. Seriously, you could ask that guy to hand-dig a basement for your house and he'd give you a perfectly square, basement-sized hole in the ground in about an hour flat. He is a work horse like you wouldn't believe, and I think he would make an excellent farm hand. And not one of those creepy dirty ones. One of the handsome ones. Yep.

I've been wanting some raised beds for vegetables for awhile now (like years) so I could have more gardening space. In the city you have to get creative on where you find room to grow things, so we decided to utilize the area in our front yard that is hot and sunny and the grass won't stay alive to save my life. Perfect place to spend hours digging up the grass and digging holes and adding the beautiful vegetable boxes that David built this morning.












David and Becca, digging. Actually Becca is digging and David appears to be evaluating something.













We dug out all that grass. Blech.

Daphne didn't have to work. Something about she's small and cute with soft hands. She got to play in her new pool, which she was actually scared of for quite awhile until she decided that two inches of warm water were in fact nothing to be afraid of.












Her babysitters walked her to the corner to meet the ice cream man. Her babysitters also fed her fruit snacks and french fries. I've lost all control.



















Our garden boxes aren't quite finished yet, but I am so excited on how lovely they are. I am not excited about the blisters on my hand or the world's worst tan lines on my back.




















20 June 2010

Daphne and her Daddy

I know Daphne has always loved her daddy, but it's been in the past few months that she's realized just how fun and wonderful he is. He's the one who builds the amazing car tracks, who takes her on long walks, who chases her through the house, and who reads her Richard Scarry's Cars, Trucks and Things that Go.

Often in the morning I'll take Daphne down to wake David up. Then throughout the rest of the day, anytime I head toward our room, she thinks we're going to find Dada in there. She asks for him all morning until he gets up. She fusses for him as he leaves for work. She asks for him all afternoon long, saying 'dada bye bye' with the saddest voice. She does a crazy happy dance if we go visit him at his work.

She loves her daddy, there's no denying it.

Today for Father's Day we started out with an early trip to our favorite Greshem restaurant, The Truffle Hunter, for some breakfast. Dads ate free today, did you know? David wanted to dress in disguise and go for all 3 meals, but Daphne and I thought that was a slightly embarrassing idea.

Because David's meal was free, we decided to go crazy and buy Daphne her first ever restaurant meal off the kid's menu. She's still little enough that she usually just eats off our plates or I bring her things from home. She was amazed and overwhelmed at that plate they put in front of her.













We don't usually have anything made with white flour around our house, so I'm half expecting her colon to start spazzing and possibly fall out of her body thanks to that enormous pancake. That would be an unfortunate end to our day.

I realize this next picture is horrible and blurry, but it is also so funny. Daphne was really good and happy at the restaurant, making breakfast a rather pleasant experience.












We had a plan to go hiking this afternoon, but remember last weekend when I was all excited about that 80 degree day? Well, it's been cold and rainy since then, changing our plans to indoor activities instead.

Part of David's Father's Day gift was some additions to the Hot Wheels track, so our living room was transformed into autobahn central.













Daphne had fun trying to tear apart the track, being cute, chewing on a bracelet, and sitting on a box.






































David has been working a lot of overtime lately, meaning we haven't gotten to see much of him, and Daphne and I have been spending a lot of quality time together. Even though we have missed him, we are both thankful for all the hard work he does to keep us warm and clothed and fed. We are grateful to have such a responsible husband and father.

We are grateful that when he finally does have a day off, he is happy to spend it on the floor of the living room, keeping a smile on the face of a little girl who adores him.

15 June 2010

Because I Know You Were Wondering

As you know, (but just in case you forgot) Daphne had surgery in November to repair her cleft palate. Her ENT told us it's typical for children to need another surgery a few months or possibly years down the road because sometimes the clefts can't be fully repaired the first time.

We met with him today for a 6 month follow-up, and he said her little mouth is looking good and she probably won't need another surgery! And while it's a little early to do a formal evaluation of her speech, it apparently comes in very handy that she is a chatter box. Just in his little interaction with her where she told him 'bye' (she doesn't like doctors) and rambled off a bunch of other words while he was chatting with us, he thinks she'll be in the minority of cleft palate kids who don't need speech therapy. Woohoo! Another round of doctors to check off our list.


















Of course you never know, all this could change, so we'll see the ENT in 6 months just in case. I'm going to start working with her to have The Declaration of Independence memorized by then, so that when she recites it for all the specialists they'll get a good glimpse of how perfectly she says all her words.

They'll say, "my, my, she is so bright!" and I will say, "yes, yes she is." It will be a really good conversation between the specialists and I.

Food Flashback

This photo of Daphne enjoying raspberries was taken in November when she was almost 11 months old.













Now, 7 months later, it appears that her raspberry-eating skills have not improved by much.

13 June 2010

To Whom it May Concern, Part II

Well, Friend Weather,

When called upon, you do respond quickly.

Did our temperature gauge read 80 this weekend?

Was that blue we saw in the sky?

We think so.

And we like it.

Our Vitamin D deficient bodies are grateful.





































10 June 2010

To Whom it May Concern

Dear Friend Weather,

Thank you for all you do for us.

We love the variety you share, and enjoy the change of seasons to keep us on our toes throughout the year. It's especially fun when you let us enjoy snow in the wintertime.

Sunshine in the summer is an all around favorite for us. Warm summer evenings...who doesn't love that?

And then there is fall. Can anyone complain about fall? We can't.

Spring has its ups and downs. Flowers are a definite up. We love tulips and peonies the best.

But see, this spring has given us a run for our money. Did you realize it's been raining a lot, dear Friend Weather? Do you realize we're smashing rainfall records left and right?

We're glad our rain barrels are full to bursting, because now our vegetable garden and chickens can have free water this summer. We know this is good, so we're not trying to complain. We just wanted to let you know that we're ready for some sun. There's a little person in this house who loves being outside, and her mama can only keep her out of the mud for so long.




















Again, thank you for filling our rain barrels and keeping the grass green.

Love,
Us

07 June 2010

Buddies

A few years ago I was going through the checkout line in Target with a Star Wars man or two, a Hot Wheels police car and some football cards when the cashier said to me, "you must be birthday shopping for a little boy." Um, no, they were for David's birthday. He likes toys.

How great for him that his little girl is just as happy in the toy car aisle as he is.































Have I mentioned yet that Daphne really, really, REALLY likes cars?



video

05 June 2010

A Little Story

Brynner and Lola love balls.

Daphne loves balls.

Daphne stole a ball from Brynner.












Daphne was happy.



















Lola stole a ball from Daphne.

Daphne was mad.


















The end.

01 June 2010

Hair-Do

It may not be obvious from her photos, but Daphne has some crazy hair. It's getting thicker and curlier by the day, plus she has cowlicks going all which way all over her head.

I haven't realized how long it's been getting because the curls keep it pretty short, but today I decided I might as well try some little pigtails. There's not much cuter than a little girl with pigtails, don'tcha think?






































She didn't especially love the process of getting her hair styled, but I am sure that now that she realizes just how stunningly beautiful she is, she will sit perfectly still next time we fix her hair like this.

I'm sure.

**Photo Update...

Daph really likes wearing her sunglasses, so how cute and grown up does she look now?! Oh my. Excuse me while I go kiss her cheeks 100 times.