Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Passport

I went to get the mail today and there was an envelope from the passport agency!!  I was so excited and said, "Maddie....we got your passport!!!"  So I opened the envelope because I wanted to see her picture (isn't that the most important part of the passport?).  To my surprise there was no passport in the envelope :(  There was only a letter saying Eric needed to fill out a form and sign it and have it notarized in order for them to complete the passport process.  This was the same form I had already filled out and filled out the "special circumstances" block since Eric isn't able to get this form notarized or mailed to us.  I called the passport agency immediately and they told me what needs to happen in order for us to get Maddie's passport in time for our vacation in 13 days.  I'm not going to go into here, but let me just say it's going to cause an intense amount of stress for both me and Maddie (because she would have to accompany me to lawyer offices, courtrooms and passport agencies).  I'm still waiting to talk to Eric but at this point it looks like our vacation to Cozumel is going to have to be postponed :(  The good news is that when Eric comes home on Oct 10th he can get this form notarized and we can mail it in and we'll have Maddie's passport by the time we reschedule a vacation.  The bad news is that it's really depressing when you're a stay at home mom (who desperately needs a break from all things domestic) and you're less than two weeks from getting away from it all and then it gets pulled right out from under your feet. 

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Little Gym week 5

Maddie did INCREDIBLY today at the Little Gym!  Oh my goodness...she was like a new child :)  She had ZERO anxiety today!  She went in by herself and went right to the red mat where we start the class.  When the instructor opened the box of bells, she went right up there to get the bells (this is a FIRST!) and then she sat down right beside the instructor (a substitute this week...) while we sang the welcome song.  She wasn't shy about trying new things today.  The substitute instructor (Mr. Brian) was able to help her do things and she talked to him and smiled at him.  I was A.M.A.Z.E.D.  She even walked across the balance beam (with my help) and when she jumped off the end she gave a big "TAA  DAAA-ee".  The whole class heard her and clapped saying "yeah Maddie" and she just smiled.  No crying today!  She knew what to do on some of the mats, too.  She went to the "cheese wedge" and got into position for a forward roll.  She knew what to jump off of, but was kind enough to wait for Mommy to be in position to spot her before trying to jump (this is important because while she knows the concept for jumping she doesn't have the ability to get her feet off the ground just yet, resulting in her falling flat on her face). 

So, today was just the most amazing day for the Little Gym.  I like the other instructor but with the way Maddie responded to Mr. Brian I kind of wish he held a full time class...I would DEFINITELY switch!  Let's just pray it has more to do with her confidence building than it has to do with the instructor...we'll find out next week!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Foto Friday

I can safely post my Foto Friday pictures now since my camera battery is dead and there is no chance of taking more pictures today :)

So, here are some pictures from Saturday, September 19th through Friday, September 25th...

Trying to get a picture of Maddie's perfect little curl.  She's steadily getting more hair.  Maybe by the time she's 3 we'll be able to do something with it :)

Upside down girl!!

Uncle Guy came for a visit last weekend!  Maddie had a good time with him :)

I got out Maddie's potty chair.  We're not starting potty training, just thought she might get used to it if I get it out now...

She had a lot of fun playing with the potty.  I'm definitely NOT letting her make a habit of playing in the potty...this was just when I first took it out of the box!

Trying to figure out how to sit on it

Still can't quite get it.

Mommy had to put her on it the right way!

Deep in thought...wondering what Mommy is up to now :)

She got her feet in it and said "bath".  WOAH...no bath here!

Maddie has found that it's fun to explore new places.  She's been sqeezing herself into new spots, just checking things out :)  She sat back here for a few minutes "reading" her book.

Another fun new place to sit. 

So busy...

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Thursday Random Ramblings

I'm jumping on the opportunity provided by Brooke to get all of my random thoughts out of my head...

First of all, I'm so fed up with this rainy weather!  I know we've been having a severe drought in Texas but these rainy days drain what little bit of energy I have left. 

It's been a full week since the yard has been taken care of and I wonder if they're going to come do it today. I did contact the landscaper and ask if they would use the push mower instead of their ride on mower.  Our yard just doesn't drain well and the ground will stay WET for days after the rain has stopped.  Because of this, the heavy riding mower the landscaper uses ends up ripping up the ground.  It's not nice...so I'm glad they're going to be gentler on the lawn (if they come today).

As of today there are only 16 days until Eric comes home again.  I'm so looking forward to getting a break!  It's so exhausting being a mom of a toddler.  Mine is a very well behaved toddler for the most part, but it's still a lot to handle.  Even when she's playing nicely by herself I still have to be paying attention.  I cook three meals a day, try to maintain a clean house (which is becoming more and more of a struggle these days), give a lot of attention to Maddie (she's been watching quite a bit of Noggin...) and still find the energy to have some "me" time that doesn't involve any of the above.  Hopefully when Eric's home this time he'll give me a day or two to sleep in and have no responsibilities :)

I'm pretty obsessive about checking the mail these days.  We applied for Maddie's passport at the beginning of September so I'm hoping it will come in soon.  We still have 19 days before we go to Cozumel so I know there's plenty of time...I just don't like leaving things til the last minute!  Also, if that passport doesn't come in, we'll have to cancel our trip.  Since I desperately need to get out of this house (see paragraph above) I'd like to see that passport so I know for sure we're going on vacation!

Ok, I have a TON more things on my mind but right now Maddie is pretty much driving me crazy whining in the high chair.  She doesn't want a drink, she doesn't want more bread, she doesn't want more turkey, she won't eat her peas, she only wants more cheese.  I swear this baby would eat cheese, and only cheese, for three meals a day if I let her!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Completely Candid Photo Entry

I decided to enter the "completely candid" photo contest over at iHeartFaces this week.  This is the first time Maddie was playing with the hose in her little pool...and not the last.  You'd think she would've learned from spraying it in her face!

My Growing Girl

I just put a cute little dress on Maddie that's a size 18 months.  I put this dress on her on Aug 29th (I know because I took pictures) and the dress hit her mid to lower knee.  Today the dress is at the top of her knee.  I know she has been getting bigger by the day, I can tell when I'm trying to snuggle with her in the rocking chair.  She just doesn't quite fit anymore :(  It's amazing just how fast they can grow when they're so young!  I read somewhere that if people continued to grow (throughout their lives) at the same rate they do as infants, the average height of humans would be somewhere around 10 feet!  Isn't that amazing?  I'm already looking forward to Maddie's 18 month check-up just to see how much she's grown!  She's probably grown at least a 1/2 inch since her 15 month appt on Sept 9th.

In addition to Maddie growing physically, her imagination has been growing like crazy too!!  She just plays and plays and plays so nicely with her toys these days.  She feeds her babies their bottles, rocks them and pats them and puts them to sleep.  She's gotten even more into her little tea set.  She plays tea parties all the time.  The other day she was walking around with her sippy cup in one hand and a tea cup in her other hand.  She pretended to dump the contents of her sippy cup into the tea cup, drank it out of the tea cup and then said "more".  Then she "dumped" more out of the sippy cup into the tea cup and did it all over again.  She was just walking laps around the house playing like that :)  Last night she brought one of the "cakes" to her tea set out to the living room, put it to the cat's face, made her fake eating sound, then said "good?" to the cat, while stooped down looking her in the eye, then she said "more?" and "fed" the cat more of the cake.  Then she tells the cat "good girl" and headed back to the playroom to find more to play with.  It's just so cute to see her interacting with the animals.  It makes me wonder if she'll use Murphy and Audrey as her "living dolls" when she plays tea parties when she gets older.  She already likes to feed Murphy her animal crackers...

Maddie is also continuing to get smarter and smarter by the day!  Yes, I'm surprised it's possible as well :)  I'm just amazed by how smart my little girl is.  I know every parent thinks their child is smart, but mine REALLY is!  :)  Yesterday she was being really fussy, bothering me while I was trying to prepare dinner...as usual.  I was trying to come up with ways to get her distracted from pestering me so I told her to go play with her horses.  I told her to go get her horse and make it kick the ball.  She stopped fussing and looked at me with wide eyes like "what a great idea" and started walking toward the playroom.  I watched her to see if she understood everything I said.  I certainly didn't think she would get all of what I said, expecting her to get one of her My Little Ponies and bring it to me.  But she actually got one of the horses and made it "kick" a ball!  I was in shock that she understood that.  Unfortunately she wasn't all that into it...it only last about 20 seconds (if that) and she was back to bother me some more...

Uncle Guy is in town visiting us right now and Maddie is doing really well with him.  He came in late Sunday night so I thought there was no way she'd be interested in having anything to do with him.  Well, when we got back to the house, she went right to him!  She didn't seem shy at all.  But within a matter of seconds she was ready to come back to mommy...maybe she has a fear of heights?  :)  Yesterday she was really interacting with him, bringing him toys and everything.  He's been able to hold her and play with her and she hasn't had much anxiety with him.  Thank God!!  I guess it's easier on her to be around people she's not completely comfortable with in her own house.  This is the place where she feels safe so to have a person come here is less stressful for her.  Also, it's just one person.  There isn't a huge group of people for her to try to figure out all at once.  I'm just glad Guy's visit is going well!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Little Gym

Maddie did SO GREAT today at the little gym!  She's becoming a pro at her forward rolls :)  (mommy assisted, of course).  I can really see her confidence building each time we go.  Today she sat on the parachute and went for a little ride and didn't get anxious about it at all.  It's so much fun to see her enjoying herself and not feeling afraid.  I'm so proud of her!!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Foto Friday

Here are some pictures from Saturday, September 12th through Friday, September 18th. 

I bought this horse for Maddie at Tuesday Morning.  She LOVES it!  She carries it around the house, hugs it, kisses it, tells it "night night" and "shh shhh" to put it to sleep.  She really loves animals!

I'm not really sure what she was doing...probably her silly forced laugh, but it almost looks like she's singing her heart out :)

Another big laugh...

Some of the horse's mane came out and she was saying "eww" at it.  She's so funny!

We went to the Children's Museum this week.  This is my favorite picture:)

Maddie "cah-wuh"ing on the chalk board

Future teacher...hopefully she stops drooling by the time she becomes a real teacher!

On the way to the farmer's market...

Working on improving her balance, going down a ramp. 

She did it!  My big girl :)

Playing "mommy" in the kitchen.  I can't wait to get her a play kitchen for our house.  I'm going to love playing with it just as much as she will :)

Digging for dinosaurs and bones.

A handful of tire chips...it did NOT smell nice in this area...blah!  But the kids sure do have fun in it!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Little Miss Independent

I took Maddie to the Children's Museum at the Woodlands Mall today.  This was our first "official" outing since she became a walker!  I was so anxious for her to start walking for months so I could take her places and watch her toddle around and explore things.  Today I finally got to experience that!  It is just so amazing to see this little person growing up before my eyes.  Two other moms from our playgroup were there as well and they each have a new little baby in addition to their toddlers!  When I looked at these little ones I almost cried thinking about how Maddie used to be so tiny, so dependent on me for EVERY LITTLE THING!  Now she wants to be independent with EVERY LITTLE THING!  I absolutely LOVE Maddie at this age, but I really miss her being so tiny and willing to snuggle with me all day!  When did she stop being my baby?  How am I going to handle her being a toddler and not needing me for as much?  I am certainly proud of the little girl I'm raising.  I understand that the ultimate goal of parents is to have their children be self-sufficient.  I just didn't realize it would start at this young of an age.  I feel like I need her more than she needs me these days!  I try to steal as many hugs and kisses as she's willing to let me steal...I cuddle her for a few extra minutes before putting her in her crib at night because this is the only time she really likes to sit still and let me cuddle her!  I read her 5 or 6 books at bedtime just to have her sit on my lap for a while longer.  I'm glad she likes books or I don't know how I would get that extra snuggle time in!  :)

Friday, September 11, 2009

Foto Friday Continued

I knew there was a reason I usually post Foto Friday after I put Maddie to bed...so there's no chance I'll take any more pictures!  Well, we were watching Go Diego Go before bed and Maddie was showing a lot of affection to the animals.  So I had to get them posted for this week!
Maddie REALLY loves Murphy!  They're best friends most days.  Maddie throws the ball for Murphy and Murphy brings it back :)  They really enjoy each other's company!
Murphy doesn't even mind if Maddie sits on her.  After this picture was taken Maddie started doing her "bouncy bouncy" on Murphy's back.  Murphy didn't care...she just kept chewing on her bone :)
Then Maddie saw Audrey resting on the ottoman so she went to give her a kiss.  Audrey's been in some kind of feisty mood lately so even though Maddie was being gentle, this is what she did.  No, I didn't intend on taking a picture of Maddie getting mauled by the cat!  I just thought it was funny that Maddie was kissing her on her back side and Eric would laugh at that.  But when I took the picture, this is what I got.  It all happened so fast that I didn't even realize that cat was going at her!  Don't worry...Maddie wasn't hurt!

Foto Friday

Maddie got her first jewelry this week.  Dollar store stuff that she probably shouldn't have...it's put away now :)
This is what I get for not folding all the laundry immediately...
I saw the most beautiful clouds out our back windows after putting Maddie to bed one night.  It was so pretty!  Much prettier in person than in the picture.
Maddie's really into hats this week.  Here she is all ready to go to playgroup!
At least someone's getting some use out of the chair!
Maddie just doing some chores :)
I was cracking the whip and telling her it better be spotless!  :)
Maddie still drinks from the side of her mouth...I guess so she can see around the cup.  It's the funniest thing!
I put the monkey around her neck, she did the necklace.  One of many fashions we'll see from Maddie over the years...
YUMMY!!  This shrimp and rice is HEAVEN!  (check out her lip)
Messy girl with the big blue eyes :)
Big blue eyes again.  I just can't get over how beautiful my baby girl is!
Just so you all know...you're allowed to leave comments on my blog :)  Even if you just happen across my blog and I don't know you~tell me what you think!  Thanks :)

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Baby Smells

There are some baby smells we don't like, in fact, we cringe at certain smells that come from our babies...I don't have to tell what they are, you know the ones I'm talking about! But tonight I got to enjoy one of my favorite baby smells. You might be thinking it's that "baby fresh from the bath" smell. Nope. Maybe you're thinking "baby lotion" smell. Nope. Maybe you're thinking Maddie was covered in chocolate cake...I would LOVE that one! But, nope, that's not it either. The smell I'm talking about is that "I just fell asleep" sweaty baby head smell. :) Doesn't that just put a big smile on your face? I don't get to smell it frequently because Maddie usually goes to sleep after I've put her in her crib. Tonight she woke up crying really hard (probably a scary dream) so I ran up to comfort her right away. She continued to sob while I rocked her and sang to her and then I reclined the chair and she rested her head on my chest and peacefully fell asleep. I couldn't see her eyes. Her breathing pattern didn't change. She wasn't even sucking her thumb! I could just tell by the way her smell changed that she had fallen asleep. It's one of the most comforting smells ever. For those of you who think I'm crazy to love the smell of a sweaty baby head...you've obviously never experienced it yourself! It makes me want to start letting Maddie sleep with me! That's how comforting it is :) Don't worry, Mom...I won't!

It's time like this that I don't see how a parent can complain when their baby wakes up through the night. Well, maybe if it happens too much... But since it happens so infrequently for me and Maddie, I sincerely enjoy spending those extra few minutes with her. It's the sweetest, quietest way for mom and baby to express their love to each other.

In other news...it's now been three weeks since Eric went back to Nigeria. It's also been three weeks of Maddie asking for Daddy every morning when I go in to get her out of her crib. She asks for Daddy a lot...when the phone rings she says "hawoo" "Daddy". When I tell her Daddy went bye-byes on the big airplane she says "Daddy" "hi". She wants Daddy to come back and wants to tell him "hi" (that's my interpretation). This Saturday marks 4 weeks til he comes home again! I pray that she'll continue thinking of Daddy just as much in that time, that she won't be shy with him when he comes home this time. I'm sure she'll be cautious with him since he's been gone for a long time again but I know how much she loves him! It's amazing that such a little person can hold so much love :) It's funny though because when she's saying "Daddy" and I ask her if she loves Daddy she gets a big grin (the kind that lights up her entire face) and says "yes" without hesitation. Then I ask her if she loves Mommy...she looks at me like I'm crazy and says "no" (also without hesitation). Maybe she thinks she can only love one of us at a time!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

15 Month Check-up

Here are Maddie's stats from her appointment today...  height 31 inches, weight 23lbs, head circ. 18.25 inches.  She's growing right along the 50th percentile line.  Her height did go a bit above the line this time so she's definitely growing taller!  Overall, she gained just under 2lbs and grew 2.75 inches since her 12 month check-up 3 months ago.  Almost an inch a month!  It's no wonder she's outgrowing her 12 month clothes at an alarming rate!

Maddie also got 5 shots today :(  4 regularly scheduled vaccines and a flu shot.  Two of the vaccines are live viruses (I'm not sure which) that can cause her to have symptoms in one to two weeks.  I probably won't even notice since she's teething and already as the symptoms :)  Hopefully they don't cause her any problems!

Now to update you on Maddie's vocabulary.  This morning she put two words together for the first time!  She said "eat banana" :)  I'm so proud of her!  And, of course, her pediatrician is just amazed at how large her vocabulary is.  She said since she has such a large vocab we might have a less stressful time with tantrums, since Maddie is able to communicate better than most children her age.  I pray she's right!  One challenge, for me, with Maddie being able to communicate so well for her age is that I forget she's only 15 months old!  Sometimes I have such high expectations of her and act as if she's 2 years old or older.  I get so frustrated when she won't tell me what she wants sometimes and lose patience.  I have to constantly remind myself that she's just 15 months old that she isn't able to communicate EVERYTHING as I would like her be able to. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Words of the Day

Maddie's new words for the day are "corn" and "reeeeeeach" (as she stretches her arms out really far and says "reach" in a straining voice).  Thanks to Diego for telling Maddie to "reach to catch the chinchilla".  :)

Tomorrow is Maddie's 15 month check up with the pediatrician.  I'm excited to show off Maddie's vocabulary, but I'm so nervous for her to get her shots.  Well, I'm nervous for the entire appointment because she usually cries just for the nurses touching her...even just to be weighed and measured.  It's a very exhausting experience for me and especially for Maddie.  I'm hoping she'll do ok tomorrow, but I know as they get older they become more and more aware of what's going on.  She'll know the shots are coming and she's not going to be as quick to forgive me for taking her there...we might have to get some ice cream afterwards :)  Ok, actually we'll be ready to come home and go straight down for a nap I'm sure!

Please say a prayer for both Maddie and me for tomorrow!  We can definitely use it!

Monday, September 7, 2009

More Words

At this point, Maddie's vocabulary is growing on a daily basis.  I wish I could just record her all day long!  She amazes me that she tries to repeat EVERYTHING I say.  Today she told me "patient", copying me, of course.  She says so many "hard" words that I wouldn't expect her to even attempt at this age...things like hippopotamus and boa constrictor!  Here are some new words that she says on her own:

pretty (she's been saying this one, I just hadn't added to any list before), giraffe, yes, elbow, berries, hamburger, alligator, Noah, basketball (this was the one that totally floored me today!!), rain, beans, duck, dog, Audrey, cat, kitty, owl, elephant, " 'nother day" (she says this when it's raining), guy, Steph (again, she's been saying this one, just hadn't added it before), clock, uh-oh (one of her first words), "excuse me", tunnel, hi, shake, boo, plane, sleep

That about covers it for now :)  I counted up all of her words and phrases and we have 98!  This is WAY beyond the "normal" range for a 15 month old.  15 month olds should be able to say at least 10 words (that anyone can understand).  I'll admit that some of Maddie's words are only understandable by me, and most of those come along with some kind of sign language that she's made up along the way. 

So...as I was typing this post I lost track of Maddie.  I started calling for her and asking "where are you"...she wasn't in the living room, wasn't in the playroom, the gate at the steps was closed.  There's only one place left...my bedroom.  As I was heading toward my bedroom she came walking out with one of my shoes in her hand :)  She had been playing in my closet (my fault since I left the light on...) so nicely :)  She's such a shoe girl!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Foto Friday

Here are some pictures from Saturday, August 29th through Friday, September 4th.  Enjoy!

Maddie got another big fat lip this week.  Since she won't sit still for me to hold ice on her face, I gave her another popsicle.  That seemed to do the trick! 
Look how much hair she's getting!!
We had some of the nicest weather this week!  Highs in the low 90s and low humidity...perfect for playing outside!  I especially love this picture because it looks like Murphy's about to take Maddie out.  Don't worry, she didn't.
So happy to play with her car!
Maddie has a really hard time walking in the grass.  This St. Augustine grass is so thick that it's hard for her to get her balance.  This picture shows her extreme concentration...she took a step or two then started crawling :)
My pretty girl
Sleepy girl...probably watching Go Diego Go before bed.
I gave Maddie a whole apple for the first time tonight (I chewed the skin off of one side).  She concentrated so hard to be able to eat it.  It was adorable!
She even used the towel I gave her to wipe her face (and nose).
I love pictures when I get a little crooked mouth, or just any unusual facial expression...it's just not the "norm".
She put the apple on the floor, the apple got dog hair on it, Mommy took the apple.  This is the result. Yes, any good mom doesn't comfort her child, she grabs her camera :)
There are several more where these came from :)  She's not gonna like these when she's older...