Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Charlotte...6 months old!!

Is 6 months already! Where did my little infant go??!! She is 16 lbs, and she looks so tall! She loves the jumperoo, she makes people smile everywhere we go with her bright eyes and easy attitude. She has almost always got a grin on. She loves to babble and I think I have to just admit that her first word is Dada. She says it all the time. Though I think she thinks it is what you say to get a parent to come and look at you. She will roll around on the floor for a hours happily as long as she has something to chew on. She rolls from her tummy to her back, but will only go from her back to her side ( I think she just HATES being on her tummy still). She isn't interested in progressing in the physical stuff. Which is FINE by me. But her fine motor skills are really good, and she is strong. She loves to sit in her bumbo in the play room and watch the girls play. And she LOVES baths. She has learn how to splash, which is altogether surprising and hilarious to her. She reaches for people (even strangers). She thinks the dogs ears are fun to play with, and I think she really wants to chew them badly. I was holding her today rocking her before bed, looking at her sweet face, her hair in a little piggy tail at the top of her head, her eyes doing that slow blink and rolling up back, and I could have cried, I like her so much.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Things I never want to forget about Alana

I haven't been very good at keeping a tally of all of my kid's first. I didn't keep a date book with first step, word or tooth. So in an effort to catch up a bit...here goes.
Alana was 7 lbs 7 oz. She came out and had HUGE eyes. She was quiet and watching us, like she knew what she was seeing and she didn't want to stop looking. I remember holding her the first time and thinking, "Ah...this is what it is all about...I can do THIS!" She took her first nap on her dad's chest while I was sleeping. Alana was a pretty easy baby. I never had enough to nurse her exclusively, and it took a few weeks of her nursing 24-7 to learn that I would not be enough. She was brought into the world with the hope that my Dad would get to meet her before he passed on, and he stuck around for 8 weeks after she was born. He used to wake up and ask if she could, "do any tricks yet?" She always had these big, bright, knowing, eyes. We moved 3 times before Alana turned one. When she was born we lived in a little apartment in Gresham, then we moved to Corbet, then we bought our portland house. She was so good at riding in the car, she would just zonk out. She was a scheduled baby. She took two naps a day for a long time. She loved baths, and BOOKS right away. One of the first things she ever wanted to sleep with was a book. I don't remember when she rolled or when she got her first tooth, but I know that she was crusing at camp that summer. She was just 8 months old. She had these perfect little curls at the nape of her neck. Oh and she was REALLY in love with her bink and her White booboo. She fell in love with this one white bear that her Grandma Alice gave her before she was born. When she was old enough to talk I asked her what his name was. I called her booboo as a nickname for a time, and she decided her bear was white booboo. Her first word was Dada. I could get her to eat anything by calling it a cookie. We had cheese cookies, not cheese sandwhiches. She has always liked drawing, give that girl a crayon and paper and she will be busy for hours! She decided that she was missing a name at some point, and decided her name was Alana Fay Merz Banana. This year she convinced her teacher of that and her teacher had to ask us about it after class...already a good actor. Alana has always loved to sing and make up songs. She made up one when she was, maybe 3, it went, "when the clouds go by I realy love the clouds, the sun and the moon and the sky! When the clouds go by I REALLY love the clouds, the sun and the moon and the sky!!!!" When she gets tired she gets really silly, in fact we used to call her wacky baby at the end of the day.

Well that seems like a good start. Maybe, I will end this entry with a recent thing I don't want to forget, Alana loves to make Jewelry. She makes necklaces with buttons my mom gives her. Today My mom brought her home some lettered beads. Alana has ALWAYS been interested in letters and words. Her abilities to recognize and spell words has TOTALLY exploded lately. She made 2 necklaces today, one for me, it says Mom. And one for her sister, it says Jojo. She taught Joey how to spell JoJo too. But joey says, "My name is spelled j and j and o and o. JOSEPHINE!" Alana is a good little teacher!

I am going to post old stories as I remember them, trying to keep a record. A woman at swim class today, one of the grammy's there with her grand kid touched me on the shoulder today, and said, "THESE are the best most golden years. " I smiled and said, "I know."

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Night sleeper!

On Friday morning at 7am I woke up, cause my boobs hurt. I don't have a lot of milk, so I don't experience that feeling very often. I realized that I had put my littlest girl down at 9:30 the night before and had yet to hear a peep from her. Right away, I thought, WHOOPY!!! SHE SLEPT ALL NIGHT!!!! Then a feeling of dread creeped in...she must be dead. Seriously. Isn't it funny how the mothers brain has to go to the worst possible scenario? I laid in bed, awake, trying to keep from going in and putting my finger under her nose. I had the same moment with both the other girls. More then once I am sure. And with them I did, I just got up out of bed and ran into their rooms and poked them till they breathed or moved a little. But I have gotten more patient, more controled. It just takes effort! At 7:30 Jesse woke up and I told him that she had slept all night. He was so excited and impressed by her. Then I told hm my secret fear that she was in there dead. So he got up out of bed and sneaked into her room and gave her a little poke. She wiggled, then went back to sleep. MY HERO.

Since that night she has woken up once or twice a night nearly every night, just needing her binkie back. The last 2 nights she woke up before 7 and was just awake. Fine by me. I am thrilled that she has already learned to sleep so well on her own. And somehow, there is this little loss of her need for me. And that is always bitter sweet.

Char is such a dear. A big talker. She is gonna give the big girls a run for the money in the attention department. She is already noisy, engaging, and fun. Good news is, the big girls are as glued to her as I am.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Rub a dub dub, 3 chicks in a tub.

Whenever I take a bath, the big girls BEG to get in with me. I almost always say no. I get very little time to just relax like that by myself, so I usually tell them I need privacy and bribe them with sesame street. But Sunday we were having a mellow day at home, waiting for Mr. Merz to come back from NYC. The baby was sleeping in her swing, Alana and Joey had fallen asleep during "rest" time. So I got in the bath! Sweet quiet time! About 10 min in, Joey all red faced with sweaty, matted hair and glassy eyes, stumbles into the bathroom. "I gotta go pee." Right on her heels is Alana. I could tell right away that she was grumpy. She had some kind of scowl on, and she was stuck on WHINE. She was all hot and bothered cause she couldn't get her blanky to wrap around her just right. So Joey, all fresh from her pee, wiped and hands washed, starts taking her clothes off and saying she is getting in the tub. Alana is crying cause she doesn't want me to help her with the blanket because my hands are wet...eventually I just invited them both in the tub. We are definitely getting to the point where we can't all fit in there comfortably. But we made it work. There is something so pretty about their long wet eyelashes, and the way their hair floats in the water. When I was washing their hair, we would say, "You look like a mermaid!" They were putting the wash cloths up on their bodies like dresses. All giggles and silliness. And with that the post nap grumpies were washed away. I didn't get my quiet bath, but I got two happy (and clean!) kiddos and that is worth something too! 

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

True or false, Fact or opinion?

Alana is really interested in the difference between fact and opinion lately. We were talking about it this morning she was getting opinion and false mixed up. So in an effort to help her see the difference between false and opinion, I gave her this example, "Alana has blond hair, that is true, Alana has black hair, that is false, Alana has pretty hair, that is an opinion." To which Alana said, "MY HAIR IIIIIIIIIISSSSS pretty Mom! That is a FACT!"

Can't say she isn't self confident, that's a fact!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

7 am on the dot...

Jesse has been out of town for the last several days, and for the couple of days running up to him leaving, Joey started climbing into be with us. Well, now that he is gone, 7 am every morning, nearly on the dot, Joey come clomping up the stairs. Opens my door, closes it hard and climbs into bed with me. She tosses one chubby arm around my neck and breaths into my face. She flops around for several min and finally her legs are still and we sleep a little. It is eating into my extra sleep plans, but I must say, I do love her snuggles. There is something sort of flattering about a kid wanting to be that close that consistently. Sweet.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Three chicks in a row

The baby likes to babble now. Usually right after a feeding she will look up at me with milk mouth and smile big and start gurgling. And then she has "chats" for 10-15 min before getting cranky with the whole thing. Well yesterday we were on the couch chatting and Alana came to sit with me. We watched her and listened and giggled at her sounds together. Not long after that, Joey came and made me scoof over and make room for her too. It was just us three chicks in a row on the couch listening to her raspberry monologue and giggling at her. It was just one of those nice moments that break up the day.

I was watching ALana and Joey in the pool in swim class yesterday, they were so cute kicking around in the water on those noodles, and I could see from the observation booth that they were talking to each other and laughing about something or another. I just felt so glad that they like each other! (for now...hehe)

Yesterday after nap and rest time, I set the jumparoo up for Char. I put her in there and the girls came out to make faces and bounce her up and down in it. All three of my girls have been in that jumparoo now. It was fun watching them trying to teach her how to use it. All of a sudden it was sort of quiet (never a good sound really unless they are sleeping!) and I looked over. Joey and Alana were taking turns petting Char's little fuzzy head. And Char was just looking up at them with great big eyes.

Guess I had a lot of those moments yesterday!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Snow Bunnies

The big girls LOVE the snow. Over the last couple days we got 4-6 inches, and it is still coming down out there. It is a really beautiful site. I LOVE to watch the snow. I have even embraced the zen of shoveling. I kinda dig the extra work out. But as much as I think I like it, Joey and Alana have me beat. They will spend an hour in the snow. The can hardly walk in it when it gets this deep, they kind of half crawl through it, leaving little tunnels in the snow behind them. It reminds me of that old comic, family circle, where it was a picture of their back yard and little foot prints that showed the path the little kid took and what they were doing. Joey does this thing where she crawls a few feet and then sings "Dig dig dig dig dig dig dig" to the tune of twinkle twinkle. She digs down as far as she can, then moves on and starts again. Alana likes to play like she is on a mission, she takes one of our spoons out with her, tosses it into the snow then run/crawls to it and says, "OH, LOOK, A CLUE!!!" digs it out, tosses it and starts again. They come it all red faced, joey usually has a long stream of snot coming down her face. I stood at the door and just watched them for a long time. Sometimes, laundry can just wait.

Friday, January 9, 2009

PooPoo Snafoo and fond farewell to naps

So the other day I was saying that Char seemed to have a hurty owie tummy right? Well yesterday morning we found out why. I pulled her out of the swing to get her ready to go to the gym with me and I thought she smelled a little poopy. Well I unzip the sleep sack and there is poo all over her little thighs. Then I open up the onesie and pull up her legs and seeping through the onesie from the inside is poo, from her butt all the way up to her HAIR! BLECH BLECH BLECH!!! Laugh on future me... I has to throw her in the tub, rinse her off, clean the tub then give her a bath. She loved the bath part, but hated the poo cleaning.

In other news, Joey and Alana are done napping. They haven't been able to sleep properly at nap time for a long time, and lately we put them to bed at 8:30 and they don't sleep till 10-10:30!! So bye bye naps. I would rather have kiddos that go down easily at night then fight for a nap and fight for bed time. And while I do miss that little bit of time I used to get to myself (including the chance to lay down myself on occasion) They have suprised me with how much they can help with the little things I do when they are usually sleeping. Helping me tote laundry, pick up the livingroom, bring me dishes from all over the house. Alana is a great little house keeper. She begs to wipe down surfaces. Pretty cute! Maybe she will be better at keeping house that me some day! And it does seem that since we have asked them to hep with keeping the bedroom and playroom clean, they have been keeping it from getting too messy in the first place.

Today is Charlottes last day in most of her 0-3 month stuff. I should consider myself lucky, Joey was out of them mear weeks after she was born. Alana on the other hand was a tiny little stick baby and wore the 0-3 month stuff till 4 months. It is sad to put those things away...She still seems so little to me. Getting bigger and funnier everyday. She sort of chats now. I say stuff to her like, "how was your day" and she gurgles and smiles and coos. Pretty cute. She has been nodding at me when I nod for a while now, but last night I shook my head no and she shook hers right back at me. Freaking CRACK up that kid. I tried to catch her on the video camera on my compy, but darn that kid, she has her own mind. I will post it soon.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

I figured it out...

I don't know what most peoples intentions are when they start a blog. I don't really know why I started one in the first place. But it struck me today that I NEED to keep a better history of life today. Because I will want to look back on it with a mix of longing and thankfulness tomorrow. So that is what my blog has got to be about. From here on out, I will keep a log of the little things my children do that make me laugh or pull my hair. How they are growing, how they impress and inspire me, even when they make mistakes. It is my new years resolution to find more patients for my kiddos, and in trying to do that, I have found moments of peace in the midst of frustration. All my kids have given me those moments today.
Alana- today she sat at the table, playing one of my least favorite games, the "I haven't tried it yet, but I don't like it game." We had chicken with peanut sauce. I even put honey on it cause she thought it would help. She ended up in time out. I get so FRUSTRATED with the eating situation (future me is laughing, but current me is scowling). When she finally tasted the chicken, she was humble enough to admit that she did like it. And she ate it all. AND once she had eaten she was pure joy. She made a measuring tape on her drawing tablet and she measured all our hands. Then Grammy marked down everyone's names where she had measured them. It is one of those little pieces of paper treasure that I know I HAVE to hold on to, so I can draw my finger down the page when all those hands are grown.
Joey, who I think lives in a world where art happens everywhere, drew on the bedding in the play room. Green and red all over the down comforter and a beautiful quilt. Non water soluble ink too... Grrrr. When Jesse and Alana discovered it, Jesse was very disapointed. Which made Joey cry...A LOT. Poor Girl. I know that feeling. I am still pissed at myself for having Katie Dunn write that note for me for gym class in 6th grade. When my mom found out and told me she was dissapointed in me, I was so upset with myself, I couldn't eat dinner that night! I came in to check out the damage and that just made it worse for her. I sat down next to her, and pulled her close. Jesse asked to her appologize, and it took a while, but she did. I thought she would fight me when I reached to her to pick her up and hold her, but she gave right in, and her head against my shoulder was so big tonight. I forget that she is still a toddler really. I think of her as being so close to Alana's age. She is so independent and capable, I just forget that she is still a baby in some ways.
Then Charlotte. She had the most lovely long hours of alertness tonight. She sleeps a lot durring the day, just 11 and a half weeks old, that is pretty normal. But in the evenings she is awake for a LONG time. And today she was all smiles, and she was monkeying my noding yes and shaking my head no, I was laughing so hard. Then she sat on my lap and made baby noises till she got sad. I think her tummy hurts tonight. Sometimes she has these almost hard poo's and they make her REAL cranky. She was all tears, clean diaper, swaddle and everything, none of my normal tricks were working. I was on the verge of a bout of really crankiness myself when I proped her up straight against my shoulder and she stopped. I was rocking back and forth from foot to foot and she was wide eyed, but quiet. And I told myself, just enjoy it. That is something I tell myself a lot. I forget. I get caught up in how something sucks and I forget how really lovely those moments can be. Seeing a trend? Midnight feedings, soothing a sad baby, all these moments can be really calming moments. Historic moments. Moments that won't last. So I savored it. I rocked her and patted her, felt her baby duck fuzz hair against my chin, smelled her baby sweat, and kissed her cool little forhead until she fell asleep.
I heard someone say that a mothers job is to try to put herself out of a job. So I think I will try to enjoy myself while I have it...