Thursday, September 30, 2010

12 Month Check Up

After our morning at the Zoo, Madelyn had her 12 month check up at the pediatricians office! She is always SO good considering the wait is almost always an hour and a half or longer. That is a long time for me to sit still...much less a busy 12 month old baby girl!

She weighed in at 20 pounds 14 ounces (47%) and 29 1/4 inches (56%) for length. She is still off of all reflux medications (although we have been seeing signs of it again) which means that she has been off of medicine for nearly 3 weeks. This is the first time (except for a couple days when she was initially discharged from the NICU) in her life that she has been off of medicine!! Woo hoo! We did find out she is mildly anemic when they drew her blood at the check up, but I don't consider iron supplements to be medicine. I am SO glad that we don't have to give her any medicine (not to mention it's like getting a pay raise).

At ONE YEAR OF AGE (holy cow! still gets me every time) Madelyn is such a busy little bee. She has been taking more steps lately, but still is not a walker. The pediatrician said it was a courage issue. He put her down on the floor and she took several steps for him right there in the office. She is such a fast little crawler and has mastered the art of climbing. She climbs on to all of the furniture in no time, but her favorite thing to do is climb on the chaise lounger.
Her vocabulary is expanding all of the time. She goes in phases where she says certain words more often. Some of the things she says are: bye-bye, thank you (ank ooo), hi, hey, daddy, momma, baby (aby), book (ook), doll (oll), bananas (nanas), more (ore and she does the sign for it some times), and she repeats several more! Most recently...she repeated me asking her if she had "poo-poo". Ha!
At 20 pounds and 12 months she met the requirements to be a forward facing car rider! I am not sure who was more excited, Madelyn or Luke! I have to is much nicer and so much easier getting that wiggly 20 pounder in the car.

Now she is constantly blowing me kisses as we drive down the road. She blows the best kisses. She puckers her lips and gives a good smooch before she sends them your way. She loves to blow kisses so much that it's hard to get a real kiss out of her these days. Occasionally we sneak one out of her.
Madelyn is a great little eater. She drinks whole milk now (and due to a recall had to switch without any transition time) and seems to really like it. Some of her favorite things to eat are chicken (especially Chick-fil-A nuggets!), green beans, pears, peaches, gold fish, graham crackers, vanilla wafers, cheese, turkey, cantaloupe, bananas, dirt (unfortunately she eats just about everything that's in sight!), yogurt and whatever we are eating. She doesn't like baby food anymore. Once she tasted the goodness of table food, she was done! Yesterday she ate 2 pieces of my quesadilla!
She loves music. If she really likes the song, she will bob her head and clap. Luke LOVES it when she does that. She still dances (bounces up and down) if she is standing up. Some of her favorite things that we sing together are, "This little light of mine", "If you're happy and you know it", "The itsy bitsy spider", "Pat-a-cake" (which she knows the motions to) and there is a weird song that came on Pandora the other day that she gets SO excited about if we put it on!

She adores her baby dolls, reading books and being outside. Her swing has been getting lots of use since the weather has cooled off some and I am sure her trike will get lots of driveway time as well.

Madelyn sleeps pretty well still. She usually cries out around 11 or 12, but goes right back to sleep. She has several teeth coming in so that has made for a few rough nights. She gets tired around 7:30pm and is usually in bed by 8:30pm. We aren't as strict about bed time as we should be...mainly because she occasionally takes a late afternoon nap where she wakes up between 5:30pm and 6:30pm. Either way, she gets about 12 hours of sleep a night. She usually takes two naps, but seems to be cutting her morning nap out on her own. She still sleeps with us in our bed. The pulmonolgist said that it can actually benefit her to be in our bed with the apnea issues that she has had, but either works for us for now and we all get good sleep!

She is in 12 months clothes (and still wearing a few 6-9 months pajamas and dresses). Our favorite thing to dress her in is jeans! I love baby jeans. She wears a size 3 or 4 shoe, but her foot is too wide for most of them! Ha!

Madelyn is an absolute JOY to be around. We love her dearly and we are so excited to see what the future holds!

the perfect day for the ZOO...

Monday morning we said goodbye to Gigi, Papa and Great Granny. Madelyn (and I) were so tired from all of the festivities that we almost overslept and didn't get to say goodbye before they got on the road! Thankfully I woke up just in time for Madelyn to give everyone hugs and kisses. She gives the best sugars so I knew they would have been sad to miss out on them!
After they left we hopped in the car (forward facing...oh my!) and met some friends at the zoo. It was a beautiful day with awesome fall weather to spend at the Caldwell Zoo.
With all of the shade, it was even a little chilly. I bundled the little one up in a cute pair of tights and a little jacket. She was still a little sleepy for almost the first hour we were there...unusually quiet for a change.

That didn't last too long though. Madelyn perked up near the end and talked nonstop from then on.
I love these pictures of her and Logan. They were having so much fun rocking in the chairs together.

The weather made me look forward to consistent fall temperatures. Cool nights. The smell of burning leaves. Pumpkin spice lattes. Football stadiums lighting up every small town around. And now I can add adorable polka dot tights to my list of the things I love about fall.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

cutest little kitchen and a super cool trike

So I have been trying for a week to post about Madelyn's birthday party. I have narrowed it down to 90 pictures (which is remarkable considering between Aunt Rachel and I there were over 800). I am pretty sure that it may take a few days just to upload that many pictures! It makes me crazy to do things out of order (which is one reason I have been terrible at keeping up with Madelyn's scrapbook), but I guess I just have to get over it!

Sunday after church Madelyn had so much fun playing with her new toys with Gigi, Papa, Great Granny and Aunt Kenda. She absolutely loves her new kitchen (thanks Gigi & Papa). She spends a lot of time these days standing in that spot playing with her pots, pans and lots of play food! As you can tell from the pictures, some of the party decorations were still up (until today actually!). I think it's so fun to decorate for parties but sometimes I am a bit on the slow side at taking them down! Oh well...Madelyn didn't seem to mind.

Madelyn also loved her new trike (thanks Grandma & Grandpa). It will convert with her until she is able to pedal on her own, but for now the safety harness and foot rest are perfect! Luke wheels her around the house so fast and she just giggles in delight the whole time.
I have the cutest videos of her riding by waving "bye-bye" and blowing kisses as she goes. So stinking cute.

Despite the fact that we requested no gifts, she has so many new fun things to play with!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

September 24, 2010

Dear Madelyn Kate,
How is it possible that we are already celebrating your first birthday? Time has escaped us so quickly and our baby girl is now entering toddlerhood full speed ahead. I remember the days when I would lay you next to me on our bed and look in to your eyes wondering when you would do something...anything at all. Roll. Coo. Lift your head. Now, the only time you are that still is when you are fast asleep. Even then, you squirm and roll and wiggle in your sleep.

This year has taught me too many things to even try to recount them all, but one of them that glares back at me each time I look at that each passing day should be enjoyed only for what it is. Nothing more. Not the could have beens or what ifs. And at the same time, nothing less. Not downplayed as just an unproductive at the house, but seen as precious time together.

During the week leading up to your birthday I was suddenly bombarded with a flood of emotions. Memories. Vivid replays of this time last year. It made for a challenging week, yet it also reminded me once again just how precious life is. I remembered how low key the day before you were born was. The time that your daddy and I spent together, just the two of us. I remembered being fearful that I would not be a good mother or know how to care for you. I remembered not really being scared about the surgery (I guess I shouldn't have been considering the sheer number of surgeries that I had going in to that one) despite the fact that everyone told me that it would hurt really really bad. And then...I remembered what it felt like the moment I first saw you.

I was in complete awe of our Creator at that very moment. Fascinated that you had grown inside of me, a perfect blend of your father and I, and now we were seeing you face to face. It was nothing short of the most amazing single thing I have witnessed in my lifetime. At 8:00am on September 24, 2009, you entered the world a 6 pound, 11 ounce, 19 inch gift from God.

From there, our journey took us everywhere except where we expected or planned for it to go. At the same time, it made us grow, stretched our faith, taught us about God's provision, the power of prayer and led people to Jesus. We made new friends, strengthened bonds with old ones, relied heavily on family, and took each day for what it was.

Taking in to account the ups and downs of your first year, it's miraculous to me that on the morning of your first birthday, we were able to celebrate with our playful, energetic, happy little girl like nothing has ever happened.

Daddy and I let you open one of your presents to celebrate!
You were pretty much a natural at unwrapping it. You wasted no time at all and dug right in.

The best part was that you loved it!
Grandma did a good job picking it out for you.
After that, you had your birthday breakfast. Actually, it wasn't anything special. Just your usual cereal bar, pears, banana and milk. You looked so precious in your bib, diaper and ballerina shoes. I tried to take them off of you, but you kept reaching to put them back on. Recently you have started to take off your shoes and bows just to turn around and try to put them back on again.
After breakfast and bath we loaded up the car to take some goodies to some very special people. You had on your adorable little "1st Birthday Girl" shirt on from Aunt Marlo. We made some more flower clips for the little girls in the NICU and wanted to deliver them on your birthday along with some yummy cupcakes for the doctors and nurses that cared for you.
It was a special and we wanted them to celebrate too!
It was such a special feeling being back there with you. At first you were a little shy, but it didn't take long for you to warm up to everyone.
Linda was one of the nurses that came to get you when you had to be transferred. You are nearly 15 pounds heavier than you were when she first saw you. They could hardly believe how big you have gotten.
Dr. Morris was there too and you were all smiles for her. She held your hands and you walked around for everyone. You aren't a walker yet, but it's not because you can't. You let go and take a few steps here and there but you seem too afraid to let go all of the time.
It was special in another way too...MeeMaw Fee was able to go with us. I didn't get a picture, but I should have. She prayed for you day and night when you were there. She read every word, looked at every picture and waited for phone updates during your time in the NICU. It was neat to have her there with us on your birthday!
When we left the NICU, we dropped some cupcakes off at your Pediatricians office too. They have been so good to us over the course of this past year and we are so thankful for them!

We couldn't pass up a trip to Toys-R-Us just for the fun of it. Daddy and I didn't really get you much for your birthday. We actually spent less than $10 on you! Ha! We knew that your proud grandparents, aunts and uncles had that part covered. We bout you a $5 set of stuffed fruits and vegetables (we had a heads up on one of your gifts) and some bubbles and bubble wands.
You had fun sword fighting with Daddy though and reaching out for all of the toys. I am sure the days of walking down toy aisles without worrying about you wanting everything are a thing of the past. You are a little girl that knows exactly what she wants!
It's been one year since your presence changed our lives forever and we had a fun day celebrating with you. Happy Birthday Madelyn Kate! I love you with all of my heart.

Love you sweet girl,

Sunday, September 26, 2010

firestation playdate

Last Monday Madelyn and I joined some MOPS friends at the city park for a play date and tour of the local fire department. Madelyn loves to swing but we haven't been to the park in a while because she has one at home. I think for her, the only thing better than swinging is swinging with friends.
I have loved being involved in my MOPS group and I am enjoying the fact that Madelyn is finally at the age where she can enjoy playing with the other munchkins! We have lots of fun days planned that we are looking forward to this fall!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

MeeMaw Fee and Me!

Dear Mommy,
I am so glad MeeMaw Fee has come to town. I have so much fun playing with her.We play telephone with all of the remotes and monitors at least once a day. That's one of my favorite things to do, you know? I have to talk loud so she can hear me and she has to talk slow so I can understand. we are quite the pair!
We smile a lot when we are together.
She has helped me get this whole "pat-a-cake" thing down. I love to do the hand motions now!
She is always reading me stories. Books are the best.

Sometimes when she is done, I love reading the stories right back to her.
I am so glad that I get to spend a few weeks with MeeMaw Fee! She is so much fun! Thanks for letting her stay at our house!

Madelyn Kate

I am just about 100% positive that if one year old (gasp...still getting used to the sound of that) could write me a letter about her time with MeeMaw, that's exactly what it would say. They have been enjoying each other's company and loving on each other non stop!

Friday, September 24, 2010

One already??

Happy Birthday, Maddie Kate!
Mommy and Daddy love you!!

Today Madelyn turned one year old. We had a special day (more on that later) with our special girl! This entire week I have felt like I have been on the verge of tears. Not sad tears. Just reflective tears. I am not sure I should be this emotional but I have just been so overwhelmed by God's goodness...His presence in our lives...that I have had a hard time communicating about it at all. I have about 5 blogs that I have uploaded pictures for, but just can't find the words to go with them. I'm sure I will finish them soon. For now, we are enjoying a special weekend celebrating the first year of Madelyn's life. We are thankful for the prayers that have carried us through the ups and downs, our family's constant support and our loving Creator for the gift of new life.

We are truly blessed.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Emily & Allison's Birthday Party

Dear Madelyn,
Sunday afternoon was Emily and Allison's birthday party. It was at Jump N' Jacks (which is a big warehouse full of inflatables) and there were so many kids!You weren't too sure what to think at first, but once cousin Emily came over you were all smiles. I love that you love your cousins and that they love you. I hope that you always have a close bond and enjoy being around each other.
You three can be wild and crazy at times but then there are sweet moments when you share a big hug!
All of the munchkins were having so much fun playing and for the most part you just watched for a while.

They had a really cool party room and since we had never been there we went in to check it out. Allison was inspecting her cake with Grandma. She even performed a little quality control (shhh...don't tell anyone).
Being at their party with you was like getting a glimpse ahead to future birthday parties. Oh my! Chaos, laughter, lots of energy and sweet little friends. Birthdays have always been a big celebration in my family so I know we will enjoy planning special parties for you!

Aunt Marlo took you down the slide. I think your face tells how you felt about it! Ha. Maybe next time?
The Great Grandmas in attendance seemed to have a good time. I think they were just jealous and wanted to jump, but they both just laughed when I told them that. Someday you will learn about courtesy laughs. After I told them that they were jealous because they wanted to be the ones jumping, I got not one, but TWO courtesy laughs. Talk about insult.
Your Grandma is just a big kid! She went down the slide with the big girls and you clapped and cheered them on from below.
Your smile is so precious! It always lights up the room.

Aunt Marlo and Grandma made the awesome cakes! I think they are going to help (which really means do all the work) with yours. I am going to attempt your smash cake on my own, but we will leave the big ones to the experts.
Happy Birthday Emily & Allison!

Daddy fed you a little bit of cake. With all these nibbles you've had, you are really going to be excited when we give you your own cake on Saturday!
I am not sure you will ever have as many friends as they do (just kidding!).

After the party we went back to Aunt Marlo and Uncle Jarrod's to let the girls open their presents from family. I thought you were going to crash, but you didn't miss a thing. You watched Emily and Allison open their gifts and you even tried to help them some.

Emily loved her outfit to match Kit's (her American Girl doll)!
You kept wanting to see what Alli was doing. I was surprised you didn't get pushed out of the way considering you were crowding her space! I am sure that she will "pour" you lots of tea with her new tea set.
By your party you should have the whole birthday party thing down. Singing, cake, should definitely know what to do after all the partying you have been doing lately!

Love you baby doll,

Friend Counter