Friday, May 31, 2013

Six Month Check-Up: Caitlin Edition

Six months stats, Caitlin:
Length: 26 inches (67th percentile)
(Four months - 24.75/69th)
Weight: 16lbs 6oz (59th percentile)
(Four months - 13lbs 4oz/56th)

Six months stats, Brigid:
Length: 26 1/4 inches (75th percentile)
(Four months - 25/80th)
Weight: 17lbs 9oz (almost 85th percentile)
(Four months - 14lbs 10oz/75th)

Aw, look at my little peanut!
(The hat was courtesy of Brigid, who was beyond excited when we told her that Wednesday was Caitlin's half-birthday. She was, however, disappointed to learn that there would be no cake...)

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Six Months

Caitlin. Oh my dear, sweet, Caitlin.

You've sure gotten the shaft around here, haven't you?

You see, when your big sister was a baby, I wrote her a letter every month for the first year of her life, detailing what, exactly, was going on with her at the time. I talked about what milestones she'd passed, what activities she'd done, what she'd liked and disliked about the month that had passed.

And for you, my little second child?

I have done none of that. And I'm sorry. I really, really am.

It's not that I don't get just as excited for every new thing that you do, I promise. It's just that, well...a lot of things have changed in the three years since we were here with Brigid, and the time I have to document all of those new things you do has basically been non-existent.

But six months. That's a big one, kiddo. It's your half-birthday today, and I just couldn't let it pass by without some sort of notice on my part.

I find myself surprised, both by the fact that it's already been six months since you joined our family, because I could swear that it was just yesterday that your dad tried to delay our trip to the hospital so he could make a hot dog while I was doubled over with some pretty painful contractions (because, as he put it, it's not like I was going anywhere at the time...), and by the fact that it's only been six months since you joined our family, because I feel like you've been with us forever.
You are an adorably happy baby, especially in the morning, but hoooooo BUDDY are you a drama queen. The rate at which you can go from happy to lower lip pouty to hysterically crying is pretty head-spinning, and while I always feel so bad for you when you get upset, I'm going to go ahead and admit that I also find it pretty cute when that lip comes out. Sorry. You might as well get used to me finding something to smile about in your moments of over-reaction, because it's not something I'm going to stop any time soon. Just ask Brigid. You can let her tell you how yelling 'Stop smiling at me, mommy!' in the midst of a tantrum only makes me giggle harder.

We've done a terrible job at introducing you to solid foods, since we've only made it through apples, carrots, the odd banana, and that really terrible smelling baby cereal they sell, but spoon feeding you is hard, and you don't really seem all too fond of most non-formula foods, and it's not like you DON'T already have the greatest cheeks, ever, so I'm not too worried about it. What I'd really like is for you to start sitting up, already, so I can just feed you the real foods, but you don't seem to have any interest in that, at all. In fact, when I do try to put you into a sitting position? You lock your legs up and attempt to stand.


That's something, I guess.

You're still a pacifier baby, which I will say makes me kind of happy, because breaking Brigid of the thumb-sucking has been a nightmare, so I'm not above encouraging you to stick with the habit a little longer if it keeps your fingers out of your mouth. You will follow the sound of my voice around the room, and at night, when I get home from work, if I come to talk to you in your exersaucer, then move away without picking you up,  you take it as the biggest possible insult, letting me know in no uncertain terms that you DO NOT approve of that move on my part.

That exersaucer, by the way? YOU LOVE IT. I've seen you bounce around for 15 minutes straight, and while I was exhausted just watching you, you seemed unphased by it all. It's not surprising to me, though, because you really never stopped moving while I was pregnant with you, so why should it be any different now, right?

Beyond everything wonderful that you do, I want you to know that Brigid adores you in ways that I'd only hoped were possible when we told her she was going to be a big sister. When you start fussing in the morning, she runs to check on you immediately, before coming to tell me that I need to go get you out of bed for the day. When we'd go to pick her up from school, she'd make everybody come say hi to you, even if they'd all just seen you two days earlier. She still calls you her baby, and she constantly tells me how cute you are, how much she loves you, and how much you love her. Because you do love her.

And the two of you together are better than anything I could have ever dreamed of having in my life.

Happy half-birthday Baby Cait. I love you more than you could ever know.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Baby's First Banana

I tried to feed Caitlin a bit of a banana earlier this week, and she was, uh, a little less than sure about the whole thing.
Then again, last night, she kept me up for two hours while she took almost 10oz of formula, so...kid's gonna have to get on the solid food train reeeeeeal quick at this point, because a) Hanging out in the nursery from 2am to 4am is not my idea of a good time, CAITLIN, and b) 10oz bottles, on a regular basis, means I'm spending this child's college fund on formula, Just no.

And I can't believe she's turning her nose up at my banana offering. I feel like that HAS to taste better than anything else she's eaten before now, right? Honestly, I'd forgotten just how frustrating this whole feeding-the-kid thing can be. At this point, I'm just about to hand her a slice of pizza and tell her to have at it.

Maybe I'll give that a shot this weekend. I'm sure she'll be fine...

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Slow Down (Part II)

Speaking of growing up, have a mentioned that I am also the mother of a teenager?
Every conversation we have goes something like this:

Brigid: Mommy, can I have some M&Ms?
Me: Sure. You can have two.
Brigid: Ummmmm, how about four?
Me: No, not four. I said you could have two.
Brigid: But mommmmmmmmy...

OR! There's this one:

Brigid: Where is my frisbee? I want to play with it.
Me: You can't throw your frisbee in the house.
Brigid: But why?
Me: Because I said so.
Brigid: But mommmmmmmmmy...

Or. You know...this one:

Brigid: I don't want it to be quiet in my room. Can you turn on my iPad? (There's a white noise app we use...)
Steve: Ok. But it's going over here on the shelf so you don't play with it instead of going to sleep.
Cut to me going into her room 30 minutes later to find her playing a game on the iPad that she'd climbed up her bed railing to get down...)
Me: You're supposed to be asleep, kiddo.
Brigid: I'm sorry, mommy.
Me: What are you sorry for, B?
Brigid: I'm sorry that you found me playing games.

Or...the one we have every night:

Brigid (2 hours after she was supposed to be asleep, sneaking into my room for the 15th time): So, ummmmm, I was hoping, ummmmm, I could sleep in your bed tonight?
Me: No, kid, you need to sleep in your own bed tonight.
Brigid: But mommmmmy...
Me: OH FOR THE LOVE!!! FINE. Get in the big bed. Just please, please, PLEASE stop whining. Please?

And then I wonder why she always expects me to cave to her every demand...

Monday, May 20, 2013

Slow Down

Baby clothes are my least favorite things in the world, because I swear they only serve to highlight just how quickly the time is passing. Caitlin will be six months old in nine days. It's already been six months since she joined our family. That just doesn't even seem right to me.

But we've already moved through the newborn clothes. And the 0-3 month clothes.
And considering these are supposed to be pants, it might be time to pack the 3-6 month clothes away for this one.
Slow down, kid. Just...slow down. Please.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Bed Hog

Steve was off on an out-of-town three day work trip earlier this week, and Brigid managed to find the silver lining behind missing him by telling me several times during her bedtime routine that the big bed was just my bed, since daddy wasn't home, then sidling into my room while I was trying to work at 9:30PM to weasel her way into sleeping with me.

For my own good, of course. I'm sure she just didn't want me to get lonely.

Of course, Tuesday night, she slept RIGHT NEXT TO ME, with her legs draped across my body, following me around the bed in her sleep when I tried to put some distance between us, before waking me up at 3AM to tell me she didn't want to cuddle with me anymore, like it had been my idea to have her sleep on top of me all night.
She looks like she feels bad about the whole thing, doesn't she?

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Christmas in May

On Friday night, Brigid wanted to wear Christmas pjs and read a Christmas book before bed. I mean, who am I to tell the poor child no, when she wants to celebrate the awesomeness that is Christmas, year round?

(I swear to you, if I can get Caitlin on board with this, too, I am THIS CLOSE to convincing Steve that we should leave a Christmas tree up for the full year. It's coming. I CAN FEEL IT!!!)
(That story, while completely true and awesome, may or may not have just been my lazy attempt at justifying my reasons for throwing out more adorable pictures of my girls just hanging out together. Maybe.)



Friday, May 10, 2013


Steve claims the baby has been giving him all kinds of grief today.

Then he sends me pictures like this...

(In his defense, I think this is the only five minutes she's slept all day, but you know...likely story and all of that.)

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Tea With Mom

Yesterday, Brigid's preschool held a 'Tea With Mom' party for Mother's Day. The classes had all learned songs to sing for the mothers that were there,* and there were snacks and cards and presents involved.

I am a fan of any event that gets Brigid as excited as she gets when a family member goes to school with her, and if you offer me cheesecake and presents, on top of that? Then I might just start asking for one of these parties every week.

Except. Well. Brigid's teacher had made these cute little cardboard teapots and filled them with candy. And when Brigid got her little hands on it?

'Mommy, I don't know if Miss Peggy made this for you or for me. But...she probably made it for me. So I could have some candy.'

Whatever, kid. It's just a good thing you made me the greatest present EVER to make up for stealing all of my candy, ok?

(HANDMADE TODDLER GIFTS! WITH HER PICTURE ON IT! I don't even care that she obviously had very little to do with the painting of the box. I'm guessing she picked out the color, and she helped glue her picture inside of it. And you know what? THAT IS OK WITH ME. I am SO EXCITED about the age of the handmade gifts. She's just the best, I swear.)

*Brigid's class did 'I'm a Little Teapot' and the I Love You song from Barney...and they were WAY more entertaining than the older class that sang a five minute song that sounded like nothing more than one long mumble after they all started singing at different tempos 2.5 seconds into it. And I'm not complaining about the kids, here, because they were cute. And they were giving it their all. It's just...I feel like maybe the teachers should have known better than to try it. Who expects 10 four-year olds to keep it together during a song that has 15 verses? And who expects the even younger kids to behave during all of that, too? I thought the two and three-year old classes were going to make a break for it...

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

I want to remember these days when they share a bathroom as teenagers...

When Steve and I finally decided that we were ready to try for a second child, one of our main concerns was how our darling first child was going to react to the news that she wouldn't be the only baby of the family anymore. I mean, after all, Brigid is...

Well, Brigid is spoiled, if I'm being completely honest. She was not only our first kid, but she was also the first niece AND the first grandkid on BOTH SIDES OF THE FAMILY. And we all tell her that she is beautiful and funny and smart, and she is just generally adored wherever she goes. She was the center of attention for the first three years of her life, because that's just how things go when you're the only one in the room who isn't old enough to understand what the word 'no' means, yet. Almost anything she wanted, she got.
So, yeah. I don't think I was wrong in wondering how well she was going to respond to sharing everyone's attention with someone else.


Well, I was wrong, I guess. Because Brigid has been absolutely the most wonderful big sister we could have hoped for. She is completely in love with her baby sister, and I am completely in love with the two of them together.

The other morning, Caitlin was in her exersaucer when Brigid went downstairs. I stood on the landing above them, watching as Brigid went to her sister, said 'good morning baby baby', kissed her on top of the head, then kept shaking toys in front of her face to try to make her smile. She's never more excited than when Caitlin smiles at her.

She is constantly hugging the baby, or patting the baby's head, or kissing the baby's foot, or grabbing the baby's hand while telling me how much she loves the baby and how much the baby loves her, too.

She helps us bathe Caitlin at night, and she's just so gentle when she takes the washcloth to rinse Caitlin's hair, I would buy her all of the ponies in the world, if I could. Because...yes. She deserves them all.

I don't doubt that we have some rough times ahead of us. There have been several gifts of toys and books that Brigid has taken to her own room to hold onto 'until Baby Caitlin is older...cause she's too tiny to play with these right now'. What happens when Baby Caitlin isn't too tiny to play with the presents she's given remains to be seen. What happens when Brigid becomes a teenager, and hanging out with her little sister isn't a top priority anymore also remains to be seen. And, yeah, it could start getting ugly.

But, when that happens, I will show them these pictures. I will tell them the stories about just how sweet they were to each other when they were younger. I will remind them that at one point in time, nothing made them happier than hanging out together.

And if all of that fails?

I will make them stand in the front yard and hug each other, for all of the neighbors to see, like my dad made my sister and I do when he got tired of our fighting. know. At least I'll be entertained either way...

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Brigid's Best Friend

Brigid has taken quite a shine to our female cat over the past few months. Because Gracie is less excitable than our dogs, but friendlier than our male cat, Brigid can lock the poor cat in her room for naptime or bedtime, and Gracie is ok with this plan. But...then Brigid got tired of just sitting next to the cat. Instead, she wanted to pet her. And pick her up. And carry her from room to room.

And that doesn't even include the time she slammed Gracie in the door. I don't think that cat came out from under my bed for something like two days. Not that I blamed her, as Brigid was standing there in my bedroom waiting for her, yelling about how she needed Gracie to come out because 'I need to tell Gracie I'm sorry, mommy! I didn't mean to hurt her!'

I don't think Gracie quite understood what Brigid wanted to say.

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that I've noticed a little more reluctance on the part of Gracie to spend quality time with Brigid these days. And then? This morning?

I found this in my bathroom while Brigid was running around my bedroom:
I'm not going to lie...I've tried something similar myself. But it never seems to work for me, you know? They always find me in the end...

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Brigid Says...

This morning, on the way to school: I really wanted to see Stephen before he left for work this morning. I really miss him. (Why she insists on calling him Stephen instead of dad is beyond me.)

The other night, while Steve was putting her to bed (and after he hadn't shaved for several days): I like shaved mustaches. I don't like fuzzy mustaches.

Eating ice cream at Skyline Chili, where we'd stopped while driving home from Indiana: I am a BIG fan of chocolate. (You and me, both, kiddo...)

Saying goodbye to my grandmother last weekend: See ya! Wouldn't want to be ya! (Thanks a lot for that one, Auntie Kate.)

Last week, when Steve asked her if we should have another baby: I love baby Caitlin. We should keep her. But two babies would be not enough. (She meant two babies, in addition to herself, would be too many. I think her and I might be on the same page, here.)

While watching the scene in Brave where Merida tells her mother she won't know she doesn't like fish if she won't even try it: You've got to try new food cause it might taste good! (Thank you, Daniel Tiger. I'm pretty sure he's single handedly convinced her to eat vegetables again, even if it IS only carrots that she's added back to her diet.)