Illness. The last few months have been non-stop illness. I had already thanked my lucky stars for sparing us this winter, where we collectively only suffered the odd runny nose. But it wasn’t winter I should have watched out for, but SPRING. The turning of the seasons came with it bug after bug after bug, and not even Louisa was spared. Most of April saw her with a mild fever and runny nose, making breastfeeding difficult and sleep erratic. I’ll tell you what, never was I so eager for warm weather (which, hooray, is finally here!)
Movement: Louisa continues to move through her life just fine. She can navigate all the levels of our backyard (including three cement steps from the back deck to the side yard) by herself, which is great, and has made our days outdoors more interesting. She can climb onto most furniture, whether we want her to or not. It’s not unusual for me to come out of the kitchen with a snack, only to find her standing on the table reaching for the chandelier, rather than sitting in her chair. She likes to run, too. When we go for walks, she’s not one to sit or be carried. She RUNS!
Louisa has been walking for a long time, but now I can clearly state that she is in fact pigeon-toed. I had a pretty severe case of it until I was about 12 or 13, so I hope my poor girl can straighten out her gait well before that. For now, though, it means she trips on her feet a lot. There are quite a few cuts on her nose and knees from the tumbles she’s taken running down the sidewalk.
I’m glad both my kids are independent explorers, and I certainly don’t want to impose restrictions on running, but I’ll be glad when she’s a little more sure-footed and the daily falls peter out.
Communication: Louisa has started Shushing us. She holds her finger up to her mouth and says “Thhhhh”. The “TH” sound is clearly her favourite, since she uses it constantly. She can clearly say “This” emphasizing the consonant sounds. There aren’t any new words, but she still communicates well through gestures and facial expressions, and sounds. She waves at everyone too.
Growth: We went to the doctor’s on April 22nd, and here are her stats:
height: 32 1/2 inches;
head circumference: 48 cm.
She’s on track for everything, so no concerns there. Girl is tall. She wears size 2t and the occasional size 3, which boggles my mind. (I heard somewhere that baby girl clothes are sized smaller than baby boy clothes, so that’s probs why she seems to fit into the same size as her big brother).
Teeth: Still as before: 12 teeth total, with her first set of molars all completely out. Last week I looked into her mouth and saw her gum stretched white where the top left canine should go, and I inwardly wept a little. Canines were the WORST for Nico, and I hope they don’t afflict baby girl too much.
Food: Oh food. Here is confession time… I’ve been pretty run down, so making food has really fallen off my priority list. Angelo took charge and now does the groceries and makes dinner most nights. That leaves me with breakfast, lunch, and snacks. And even that is super challenging for me. I’m really trying to adjust my expectations, look at what she eats over the course of a week rather than at any given meal, and do all the other things that we’re supposed to with feeding a toddler. But always, there is this nagging sense that I’m failing her somehow. The constant cold of the last 6 weeks doesn’t help my case, either. With a distinct drop in breastfeeding (her choice, not mine) and a new refusal to eat certain foods, I know she’s not getting the nutrients she once was. Neither am I. Not that this is about me, but it really shows that when I’m eating poorly, the kids are less apt to eat balanced meals. There was a particular lunchtime when they both had red pepper sticks on their plates. Neither touched them, opting for the grilled cheese instead, until I reached over, grabbed a stick and crunched it loudly. They wordlessly looked at me, each grabbed their own, and munched away. Since then, I’ve made more of an effort to eat lunch with them (instead of passing on it altogether) but some days I fall off the wagon.
Everything is a work in progress.
Sleep: Big changes happened for Louisa this month. Namely, she got a bedroom.
I’d been working on her bedroom for a while, ripping out the old carpeting, painting the walls and trim, acquiring furniture. The last piece of the puzzle was the most important: her bed. She has always hated her crib, and refused to sleep in it. There was absolutely no point in keeping something that was stressing her out simply for convention’s sake. I was trying to piece together a bed for Louisa using used/donated pieces, but mattress and frame sizes just weren’t matching up, and finally my dad very kindly bought us a new bed. We put it together right away, and the moment we had finished, put the slats and mattress on, Louisa climbed right into bed, and laughed and cheered. She crawled all over it, and then pretended to go to sleep on it. What a difference in her reaction to the crib (which was met with shrieks and cries).
She sleeps in her bed maybe 30% of the time, and already that’s helped us all get better quality sleep. She’s also become attached to her zebra, using him for comfort at night, and I can usually find her asleep in our bed or hers with her arm around his neck. I thought I would hate to see a substitute for my own neck, but all I feel is relief!!
Favourites: her aforementioned zebra (he has a name now: Felix); singing and dancing; school buses; swimming.
I can’t believe I haven’t mentioned swimming yet! She took the “duck” level class last month, and she just LOVED it. She’s really good at kicking her feet, and lying back on the water (something that most babes aren’t too keen on) and she just loves being in water. Cottage season is now upon us, so we’ll see how she feels about lake swimming, but I’m pretty confident she’ll be a fan.
One funny thing to note: my father dutifully kept all of my old My Little Pony’s and recently gave them to me. They were in need of a little cleanup after all those years in storage, so I took a bunch of them and gave them a good scrubbing and hair detangling. I set them out for Louisa the next day, and she REFUSED to touch them! I was finally able to coax her to pick one up by the body, but once her hand brushed up against that nylon hair, she made a disgusted face and dropped it. Oh no!! Maybe she’ll develop a taste for them as she gets older, but it just goes to show, you never know the fickle taste of children.