Tuesday, November 30, 2010

A Warm Thanksgiving

Kate took another airplane ride to FL last week and was again a quite good traveler.  We spent a few days with with my dad and Gloria for the holiday.  Gloria's daughter Sherry hosted the feast of fried turkey, smoked ham, an oven-baked stuffed turkey, green bean casserole, asparagus casserole, mashed potatoes, stuffing, gravy, sweet potato casserole, cole slaw, pumpkin pie and something called Yummy Cake that lived up to it's moniker.  Enjoy the photos!

Kate stayed in this swing for about an hour with various people taking turns pushing her:
 Dale and Sherry's daughter Lainey
Kate needed a drink after all that swinging
Dale frying the turkey!
Yummy crispy goodness
 Dad with Lainey and April
Gloria making the rolls
Kate and the twins, Drake and Lainey, playing in the LR.  Kate held her own with two, two-year olds!
Waiting for dinner...
The feast
Kate enjoyed most everything
Danielle, Renee and Trey in a post turkey coma
Trying to get all the cousins in one picture proved to be impossible.  The twins has to be shot in separate episodes.

Playing at Papa and Meme's house on our last day

 We're not in FL anymore!  We went from 87 degrees to 33 degrees!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Can you say Mama?

For the record, yes she can.  She just chose this opportunity to show what other word she can say:

Monday, November 22, 2010

Set your DVRs...again

Candice is set to appear on "The Talk" on CBS to discuss the on-going situation with Nepal adoptions.  It should air on Tuesday, November 30th at 1pm CST. 

I will be a bit sporadic on the posts for this week since it is a holiday.  I hope everyone has a fabulous and delicious Thanksgiving.  I know I will be reflecting on all I have to be thankful for this year, starting with this little morsel right here:
I think I'll just eat her for Thanksgiving...doesn't she look delicious?

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Doctor appointment

Kate had her 10 month checkup today and all went exceedingly well.  She got a polio vaccination today and barely made a peep.  Here are her updated stats (with her stats at 8 months in parenthesis):

Weight:  18lb 11oz (17lb 6oz)
Length: 27 1/4" (27")
Head circumference: 42 1/2cm (42cm)

She is in the 50th percentile.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Cancel your DVRs

Antara came down with a cold so Candice had to cancel her trip to LA for her interview on The Talk.  I'll let you know when it is rescheduled.

I feel a need for speed

Kate seems to love going faster, higher and bouncier.  The higher I push her in the swing, the happier she is.  The more jiggly I can get with my leg, the better.  And now...this.  I'm thinking of tying a rope to it so I can pull her down the hallway faster.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Set your DVRs

Although Candice and Antara are home from Nepal, there are many families still stuck in limbo over there and she has not forgotten them.  Here's the latest with her:

We were invited to share our story and the plight of the families who are waiting to bring their children home on the new (U.S.) national show The Talk, which will air this Wednesday, Nov. 17 at 1 p.m. CST...


I hope you can all tune in!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Love Letter, Month 10

Dear Kate,

You are ten months old today.
One thing that needs to be discussed right now, up front, before anything else:


Somewhere in the last month I crossed that line from caretaker of a baby to caretaker and disciplinarian, and I'm not so sure I'm ready for this. I certainly didn't think it would happen this soon, and to demonstrate just how little I was prepared for this stage I'll recount for you a scenario that happens almost daily in our house:

You start every morning play-time in the middle of the living room, on the rug, surrounded by various toys. The amount of time that you will stay there playing happily has shortened considerably this month. You have discovered that your chubby little arms and legs can carry you to distant and foreign lands, lands with things that aren't plastic or pink, lands that have yet to be child-proofed. As you head for something I don’t think is wise for you to be pulling on, say, the dangling cord from the cell phone charger, I say, “Kate, I think that’s not the wisest choice you could be making.” Who says that to a ten-month-old? Like you would understand perfectly that the situation called for a more appropriate choice.
My friends with kids use words like NO and STOP to signal that someone should cease being involved in what they are doing, but not me. No, I use words like WISEST CHOICE and LET'S DISCUSS and PLEASE ELABORATE. If you pick up the scissors I accidentally left LYING RIGHT THERE next to you, I'll grab them and say, "Why would you want these? The metal on your tongue will taste acidic!" Kate, your mother loves words.  I've loved playing with words and saying things more elaborately than others since I can remember.  I'm warning you now so that you can warn your friends later.
Over the past month you have discovered that you can just SCREAM, and it's not like all the screaming you did before. Sometimes you scream because you're distressed, yes, but now you're usually screaming because you seem to like the fact that you can actually make such an annoying noise. It's like you've discovered this talent, like singing or dancing, except your talent is making this high-pitched AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH! and the H's at the end are so off the scale that only dogs can hear the pitch, and Kate, I’m sure you’re giving our neighbor’s dog seizures. You do this scream CONSTANTLY, no like seriously, all the time.
As if the screaming is not annoying enough to our neighbors, you have also discovered cause-and-effect. This takes place by you dropping the loudest, hardest toys you have on the hard wood or tile floor, repeatedly and with increasing force. And because you are so happy and so OCCUPIED and ABSORBED, I admit that I do nothing to stop it because that short window of time allows me to make a phone call, check email or make a snack without you demanding “UP UP UP!” with your little outstretched arms.
You're probably wondering at this point in the love letter if I have anything good to say, and I do, I'll get to that in a second. But there's all this other stuff that you keep throwing at me AND I NEED A MOMENT TO CATCH MY BREATH, PLEASE:

You've learned how to undo the velcro straps on your diapers while you're lying on the changing table.

You’re inclined to roll sideways and simultaneously stick your foot into your poopy diaper nearly every time you get the opportunity.

You still nap sporadically, if at all.

You must have something in your mouth at all times, preferably something that you can bite into which includes my shirt, any fasteners on my clothes or my car keys. Unfortunately, when you return them they are covered in such copious amounts of slimy spit that I wish you had just kept them.
Are we there yet? To the good parts? There have to be good parts right? And there are, baby girl. There are. Like how you hug me and put your nose to my nose. Like the way you smile when your daddy comes home from work. Like the way you turn and look at me over daddy’s shoulder when he’s carrying you to the bath. Like the sound of your laugh and how it heals my heart. Like the size of your pearl-white thighs and how you'll let me gobble them up. Like the curve of your round belly and how it hangs over your pants. Like how you love books and nestle into me in solemn silence like we’re in a library as we read together.  Like your sense of giggly anticipation when I zero in to nibble the back of your neck. Like when you point at something as if  we’ve never seen it before and you are showing it to us for the first time. Like the way your hair is growing in thicker and feels like soft silk against my fingers.
There are so many good things, and I think we're both learning our roles as mother and daughter, caretaker and torturer. As your father was leaving for work this morning you were heading for the hallway to have a snack on the rubber-tipped door stoppers, and I said to him, "I plan on having a good day, but you see that? If I have clawed off my face by the end of the day, THAT'S WHY." And then I made a silent promise to learn how to say NO and YOU ARE THE LIGHT OF MY LIFE much more often.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

At least there's that

I've discussed too many times to count Kate's deep-seated desire to stay awake during the day at all costs.  She's pretty much down to one nap a day which may occur in the morning or the afternoon.  I still put her in her room in a vain effort for routine and probably 80% of the time she ends up playing in her crib or laying on her tummy and "resting" while singing to herself.  The good thing is that she is generally a pretty happy baby even on one nap that lasts approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes tops.  I have no idea what that lack of sleep is doing for the regeneration and growth of her brain cells but at least she's not a screaming mess because of it.

This was earlier this month after a morning "rest".

And this was yesterday at 3:30pm after no nap AT ALL for the entire day--she had been awake since 6:15am.  She decided it was a great time to practice standing up.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

All I want for Christmas...

Is my two front teeth, my two front teeth, my two front teeth! 

Looks like she's got 'em early!  Kate's mouth is a fountain of spit, her nose is impossibly congested and I don't even want to get into what is happening in her diaper these days with all of the extra liquid in her mouth that doesn't seep out and onto everything in the house.  My yoga block looks like a hamster got a hold of it, she's chewed the edge off a book and we had a rather loud discussion involving nursing protocol.  So far the loud scream and ensuing crying (by both of us) has forestalled any further nipple nipping incidents.  I've yet to get a good picture of these offending little creatures breaking through her gums but I have managed to snap some shots of our little rodent in action on her toys.

Here she's playing Carmen Miranda with her maraca.
 This duck is a new favorite and she crawls around with the head in her mouth like a pacifier.
Stacking the rings, not so much...but chewing the post....ahh, yes!
She couldn't stuff enough of these dollhouse figurines in her mouth at the indoor playshop.
Sitting under her exersaucer with her phone...it's like her own little cave and legbone to gnaw on.
 You can just see one of her top teeth in this photo.  Her left top tooth came in first and her right one broke through this weekend.  Notice the copious amounts of liquid running down her chin.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Home Sweet Home

Candice is finally home in Chicago with Antara.  Here's the latest interview with them!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Professional photo shoot

Back in September we did a professional photo shoot with Jessie.  Her style is very much like ours--relaxed and uncomplicated.  We had a really nice time on the shoot and finally narrowed down our choices of photos to these.

We had been rained out of our previous engagement and it looked like we might not have a dry afternoon for this shoot either but the rain held off.  It was, however, quite windy as you can tell from this shot. This was taken on the bridge near Cafe Brauer at the Lincoln Park Zoo.  It has a really nice view of the Chicago skyline--that's the Hancock Building behind us.
This was on the walkway under that bridge .
Kate loves to be upside-down.
 She had her thumb in this position for a lot of the photo shoot.  She was still sizing up Jessie I think.
She was starting to relax and smile here.
 Love this one of Len and Kate.  They look very much alike here I think.
Now she really started hamming it up.  I was behind Jessie making all kinds of funny sounds and she was cracking up.
 Until she got distracted by the leaves...
 And into the mouth...apparently they weren't poisonous.
 The sun was starting to go down and the light was really beautiful behind the trees.

After a quick wardrobe change, Kate really seemed to come into her own.  It's like she knew she was dressed up because she laughed and giggled and generally charmed everyone around us with her smile and that ridiculous cabbage flower on her head.


 Jessie likes to get a few photos of the parents alone--documenting where it all started!


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