Saturday, December 7, 2013

Months 8 & 9 (a little late)

I have to admit that I've been slacking in my posts over the past 2 months.  I'm waaay overdue for a Maddy update, so here goes!

Maddy recently went to her 9 month check-up and she weighs a whopping 17.7 pounds!!  She's on the charts for her actual age and her doctors continue to be very happy with her progress.

Toes!  Maddy's new favorite toy!
Hi Mom!  Look at me sitting like a big girl

Developmentally, she is right on track (even a little ahead of her 6 month adjusted age in some areas)...we've come a long way in 2 months!  Gross motor-wise, she is able to sit independently in my lap and reach for toys for several minutes.  On the floor she maintains independent sitting for several seconds, but still falls when reaching for toys.

Maddy-Giraffe crib stare-down!

She is tummy timing like a champ, pushing up to her hands and doing adorable little baby push-ups!

Her biggest developmental gains, in my opinion, have been in the fine motor department . We started solid feeding a few months back and she has progressed nicely to finger foods.  She has an impressive pincer grasp and is able to grasp and bring food to her mouth. We love watching her chubby little cheeks go to town when she chews her is adorable!

We get a little messy some every time!

Trying to get the hang of her spoon...

 In early October, Maddy took another plane ride to visit her family in Boston and attend cousin Johnny & Christina's wedding! While there, she stuck her toes in the sand and ocean for the first time..

 and met lots of new family!

Maddy with Cousin Laura
Maddy with Cousins Christy and Kim

Later in the month, Maddy dressed up for her first Halloween!  Thanks Scott and Nichole :)

In November, we traveled to Grandpa and Mimi's house for Maddy's first Thanksgiving! She had her first taste of Grandpa's fried turkey that day, but wasn't a big fan...yet!

I think those are the big highlights of the past 2 months.   Things I wish I cold freeze in time:  Maddy's big beautiful smile when she wakes up, her adorable kicks and screeches when we change her diaper (who knew this kid would get such a kick out of diaper changes?), her chubby baby cheek chews and the most amazing sound of her giggle when tickled! Things I would NOT like to freeze in time: teething! Every day it seems I struggle with wanting her to stay this beautiful little baby and being excited to see what she'll surprise us with next. One thing is for sure, as Will and I are busy preparing for Maddy's first Christmas, we are sure to enjoy every moment with our sweet girl!

Until next time, Happy Holidays to all!
K, Will and Maddy

Sunday, September 29, 2013

7 Months!!

Another milestone filled month has passed, so its time for Madeline's 7 month update!!

Weight: 14.13 (7th percentile)
Length:  24.25 in (3rd percentile)
Head Circumference:  16.5 in (21st percentile)
Clothes:  3-6 months
Food:  24-28 oz of formula/day, occasional rice cereal/oatmeal

While this past month was quiet for us in terms of travel and activity, we were busy keeping up with Madeline's growth and development.  Since we last posted, Maddy has been rolling from supine to prone (back to front) and also, once or twice, from prone to supine (front to back)!

Tummy time after rolling from her back!

Hi ma!

She is also doing much better with tummy time which has led to very good head control.  I've seen her consistently prop onto her elbows and she can easily clear her chest from the ground.  Will swears she's about to crawl any day now, but I'm not so sure :)  Either way, she's come a long way in what seems like such a short time, and we are in awe of how strong she has been from the start!

Maddy is also so close to sitting independently.  She needs just a little stabilization at her hips or arms to maintain a sitting position.  I bet by the next post we'll have an independent sitter on our hands!!

Fine motor skills are also blossoming.  Maddy is passing her toys from one hand to another.  She consistently reaches for and grabs her toys from a sitting and supported standing position.  She still loves to play in her bumbo, and has discovered a new love, her exersaucer!

Maddy can recognize us from across a room and will smile back if we smile at her or make goofy noises/faces.  She has the sweetest smile and seeing it is the best part of our day!  She's also starting to giggle if we tickle her belly or sides and she LOVES to "coo" at herself as she looks in her toy mirror.

Overall, Maddy seems to be developing somewhere between her actual and adjusted age (but closer to her actual age) in most areas.  At her last check up, the pediatrician was very impressed with her growth and development and says she's right where he expects her to be at 7 months  (4 months adjusted).

Maddy, BC  "before cereal"
After cereal :)

Another exciting milestone is we've been slowly introducing solids.  I mentioned in the last post that she was given the green light at her last doctor visit to start rice cereal.  Well, it took some getting used to, but I do think Miss Madeline loves her solids!  We are getting ready to start the real stuff and sweet potatoes are up first!  Look out for some messy sweet potato face pics coming soon!  For now, enjoy some rice cereal pics!!

We also transitioned Maddy from her rock and play (bassinet) to her own big girl crib a few weeks ago.  Since she was starting to roll, we also stopped swaddling her at night when she moved to the crib.  After a few rough nights where she ended up cuddling with me (oh darn), she has resumed sleeping through the night in her crib, and for that we remain very thankful!

Napping in her crib!

Although we weren't as adventurous this past month as some others, we did manage to do a few fun things! Maddy went to her first Blackhawks scrimmage after cheering daddy to a 5k PR!

She also watched her first Hokie and Patriot football games and I must say, she's the cutest little fan I've ever seen!

Stay tuned next month for another update, including a visit to Boston to meet some of her extended family!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

6 Months!!

It has been another busy month for our family and its time for Madeline's 6 month update!  I'm a little late with this because, as Will commented in the last blog, I've returned to work...I figured you'd understand :)

Weight:  12.5lbs
Sleep:  ~9PM-7AM
Feeding:  ~5-7oz per bottle
Clothes:  3 months

Developmentally Maddy has had a big month!  She is showing a large improvement in neck/head extension during tummy time.

She also loves to reach for toys while sitting in her Bumbo seat!

She continues to devour her hands and is starting to hold her own teethers.  No teeth yet but we're definitely in the beginning stages of teething so let the fun begin!

In her 6 month doctor appointment, we discovered that she is so close to being on the growth charts for weight (compared to other 6 month olds) and she is on the charts for length and head circumference.  I can't remember her exact numbers, but we're certainly heading in the right direction!!  With any luck, we'll graduate from the high calorie formula she's been drinking in a few weeks!  We were also surprised to have been given the green light to start rice cereal.  Honestly, I think its still a little early so we're not pushing it too much yet, but I can't believe she's starting solid foods...time can go ahead and slow down now!!

This past month, Madeline went on her first plane trip to visit friends and family in Virginia.  We were a little nervous before the flight and kept our fingers crossed that she would have an easy trip.  Turns out she's a natural traveler!  She had no problems on the plane and basically played in Will's lap for the duration of the flight to VA.

While we visited she met lots of new friends and family, all of whom spoiled her with fun new clothes and toys...

She also went swimming....

...met her new friend Jolie and celebrated her future BFF Allie!!

Photo: BFFs and Baby Girl BFFs!

The other exciting milestone this month was Maddy's baptism.  Will did such a good job covering the weekend that I won't comment much except to echo the same appreciation for those who made the day special.  Thank you all :)

See you all next month!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The Baptism & Back to Work (Picture post follows)

Today seems like a pretty huge day for our family so it seemed appropriate to get off my duff and post an update! Our latest major milestone is that Kristen goes back to work full-time and we transition into being 2 full-time working parents. Because Maddy was never really a candidate for daycare, we (i.e. Kristen) found our nanny Taylor and today marks her first official day on the job. We've only met a few times but I'm very confident that she's going to do a fantastic job taking care of our little girl and of course, Baxter (who totally scores in this deal).

Because of my awesome work schedule, we'll only need her 3 days a week and the other two are going to be daddy-daughter days as I attempt to work from home and take care of our infant. We've done a couple trial runs of that setup so far and it's gone OK but as I've learned, everything is subject to change. I will admit to being very fright-cited about the prospect of spending an extra few days with her during the week but I really think I can do it. Time will tell.

The other major milestone over the weekend was Madeline's baptism . Living in the controlled chaos that is being new parents, her baptism snuck up on us. We've been going nine million miles per hour (just nine, 10 will be when Maddy goes mobile) since late July and by the time we sat down at baptism class 8 days ago, it just felt like one more thing we had to do. Thankfully, the class was structured in a way that made me realize how special this particular sacrament is to me. I'm never going to win any awards for world's best Catholic but sitting in the class, it really made me reflect on how fortunate and blessed our journey has been. It was only five months ago when I can remember sitting in the church praying to just be able to hold our tiny daughter that day and for her to stay strong. Flash forward and here we are, ready to introduce Madeline into our faith. Perhaps blessed is an understatement.

For the actual baptism, our little girl was an angel as always. She absolutely loves water so when the priest poured it over her head, she was initially startled by the dip down with her eyes going wide but then, with the water came the smiles. She slept quietly through the rest of the ceremony with the oil on her head and blessings in her ears and mouth, content to suck on her pacifier and snooze the afternoon away. The priest even commented that it was OK just this time for her to sleep in church.

Without going into a million Maddy stories (teaser for 6 month post from Kristen next week), she's doing amazing and I always seem to find myself commenting on how easy it has seemed so far. She's somewhere around 12-13 pounds and growing bigger, stronger, and faster everyday. Health wise, everything is A-OK and we're into the wait-and-see phase as far as any developmental delay. Teething has started and that has made her a little more squawky but nothing the super team of Kristen and I can't handle.

Her favorite thing in the entire world is a purple moose that we've creatively named Mr. Moose. In the mornings right after I'm done feeding her, I'll usually put her down on her play mat and she'll start wailing away at him. As a proud Papa, I have dubbed her actions the Hulk smash and it cracks me up every time. Sometimes she'll mix it up with some pulling and chomping but mostly, its smashing!

It's not really news but she started smiling a couple months back and at this point, I think she might be refining into a very precise weapon of Daddy destruction. That smile of hers makes my day each and every time and I'm sure she'll start using it for her own purposes before I even realize it.

All of the pictures are coming in a follow-up and separate post but before I get to that, I wanted to thank all of our friends and family that came out this weekend to help celebrate our special day. We were very touched to have such a big crowd in the church and it made a great day even better.

Baptism Pictures

Now that you've made your way through the lengthy post, now onto the fun stuff, pictures!

Here's some of the pre-baptism shots:

Madeline! Her gown is a family heirloom of mine and it's been passed down 3 generations now. My mother, brother, and I all wore it during our baptisms. She also has two necklaces on, the first was Kristen's during her baptism and the second was a gift from her godmother, Jeanine.

Godparents (left to right)
My father, Nick
Kristen's sister, Jeanine
Our friend Scott

Here's some shots from the church: