Thursday, December 29, 2011

13-14 months for Lila

Miss Lila-pie has had a whirlwind couple of months. Where has the time gone?? I guess that's what happens when your birthday is at the start of the fall/winter holiday season. Lila turned 13 months old while we were in Minnesota for Thanksgiving, and she turned 14 months the day after Christmas.

I've been pretty good about marking down on my calendar the most notable things she's been doing. These include:

November 19th - Drinks cow's milk from her cup
November 20th - Lets go of what she's standing against to get to me
Week of December 5th - Stands alone for long periods of time
December 9th - Takes a few steps on her own
December 11th - Stands up on her own without holding onto anything
December 17th - Signs "please"

Other mentionables:


A big change during this time has been her gradual weaning from breastmilk. The same weekend she started actually drinking from her cup as opposed to just playing with it and/or throwing it on the floor (November 19-20), I came down with an absolutely HORRIBLE case of the stomach flu. Thank goodness she was able to get enough cow's milk from her cup that weekend, since I wasn't able to eat or drink much at all and thus couldn't keep my milk production up as high. Luckily, I had been planning to go down to 3 nursings a day anyway -- the illness just speeded things up a little.

The 3 nursings a day schedule only lasted a short time. By the first week of December, I already had her down to 2 nursings a day, and about a week after that, she was down to nursing once a day in the morning. The weaning process was especially easy, since Lila had already decided she didn't want to sit still for any nursing other than the morning one. I still nurse her once a day in the morning and will continue doing so until we get back from our East Coast trip in mid-January, when she'll be 14.5 months old. John also nursed until he was 14.5 months old.

I'm a little sad about the end of nursing, but mostly I'm really excited! It's been SO much easier to be able to give her cups of milk and water -- I don't have to nurse in public anymore (it can be a hassle), I don't have to figure out how to keep John occupied while I'm nursing, and I don't have to wrestle with a baby who was always easily distracted at the breast. Plus, I get my body back! I feel like I haven't had it all to myself since before I got pregnant with John, since when I stopped nursing John, I was already pregnant with Lila.


Lila will take up to 5 or 6 steps at a time now! She has mastered the components of walking -- standing up on her own, keeping her balance, lifting her feet -- but she doesn't always have the will to execute because she knows she can still get around faster if she crawls. Another issue is that she takes her steps too quickly. If she'd slow down a bit, she'd already be zipping around the house! John started walking on his own at 13 months, so Lila is a little behind her brother in terms of this milestone.
We bought Lila her first pair of "walkers" in mid-November -- a pair of silver size-4 Stride Rite sneakers with velcro straps. I love them! You can see them a little bit in the photo of her with her Radio Flyer wagon.


Lila is a total chow-hound. Nobody can believe how much food this girl eats! She has gotten a little pickier the past couple of months, but it's hard to predict which foods she will or won't eat. Sometimes she'll eat chicken, but sometimes she won't. The same goes for broccoli, bananas, grapes and strawberries. In general, though, she's less pickier about food than John was at this age. We still give her jars of baby food so that she gets some of the fruits and veggies that she's picky about.

In the past month, Lila has become seriously stubborn about feeding herself. She wants to hold a fork and spoon like John does, and she does a really good job of getting food into her mouth! It's especially impressive how well she wields a spoon, dipping it into a jar of baby food and turning it around to bring to her lips. I don't remember John at this age showing much interest at all in using utensils!
She is still obsessed with her snack catchers. Even when she's already eaten all of the food out of one, she still wants to hold onto it. It's another comfort object for her -- like her blankets and her two middle fingers!


Lila is not a big fan of books yet. She won't sit still for them! Tonight she let me read three board books in a row, which I think is a record for her. Her favorite book by far is Doggies, but this also happens to be my least favorite book, and anyone who has read it understands why -- it's all dog sounds!

Lila still loves to push her walkers around the house. For Christmas, she got a shopping cart and a baby doll stroller, so she now has even more options to choose from when she wants to take a spin! She recently figured out how to get onto the ride-on toys we have (i.e. Chicco train and Radio Flyer rocket ship), and she'll push herself around that way, too (albeit very slowly). Around the same time, she also figured out how to climb onto the little Toy Story folding chair John has. I totally remember (like it was yesterday!) when John started doing this!

Apart from pushing her walkers, Lila's favorite activity is rolling balls back and forth or picking them up and bouncing and/or throwing them. She is an athlete in training!

Lila is definitely quieter than John was at this age -- she takes after her Daddy! Her favorite words are "Daddy," "uh-oh," and "wow." She also likes to say "uh dat," which she uses for "that." If she wants something or wants to know what something is, she'll point to the object and say "uh dat." Before naptime and bedtime, she'll often play the "uh dat" game, asking what all the different objects in her room are (but especially the ceiling light, the window, and the pictures on her wall).
I'm not certain, but I think she may have started saying "ba" for ball. I think I've heard her say it a couple of times.

She has been signing for about a month now. She signs for "please," "help," and "more." It's cute because she does the same sign for "help" and "more" -- it looks a lot like a clap! I've been trying to teach her "all done" so she doesn't feel the need to throw her spoon off the highchair tray, but I haven't been successful with that yet. Hopefully soon.

I've been watching Lila very carefully lately to see which hand she uses most frequently when she's eating and playing, and based on these observations, I think we may have another lefty in our family! Papa Jeff and Uncle Jesse are also lefties. Interestingly, Papa Jeff and Uncle Jesse are also the only other people in our immediate families who have blue eyes like Lila.


Lila now has six teeth on top and six on bottom. Her fourth one-year molar has been taking forever to cut through. It is the first tooth that has really seemed to cause her a lot of trouble -- she's been much fussier than normal the past few weeks.


Everyone says it -- Lila is the most smiley, happy baby. She is such a joy to be around! She loves to be held, which Grandma Bonnie has told me was the way Daddy was when he was a baby. Although she prefers to be held by Mommy, she doesn't mind being held by other people, even people she's never met before. And compared to John at this age, Lila is much better about being separated from me. We have never had a single problem at the child care center at the gym.

Little Lila-pie, we love you to pieces and can't wait to see what you'll be doing next!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Minnesota pics from September and November trips

We've been able to visit Grandpa Harry, Grandma Robin and Uncles Mike and Dave several times since we moved to Milwaukee. In mid-September, the kids and I drove up to their house in Minnesota while Daddy was in the field for a training weekend. We had great weather and made the most of it by taking the kids to a nearby apple orchard. John loved the tractor-pulled "train" ride.

Lila snacking at the kitchen table.....
Relaxing in the swivel chair.....
John heading into the orchard's haybale maze with Uncle Mike, who had just returned home from basic training at Fort Benning!
Happy boys.....
Posing in his "train" car.....
Trying out the bikes in the John Deere kids section.....
While John rode around on trikes, Lila sat in the Joovy (a recent purchase at that time) and snacked on Puffs.
For Thanksgiving, we drove up to Minnesota in Daddy's truck (a much more comfortable ride for four people). It was pretty cold out, but there was no snow, so the trip went very smoothly. Aunt Katharine and Uncle Jarey were there, as were Aunt Andrea, Uncle Randy and Cousins Jillian and Jordan, who live in Massachusetts. How wonderful to have the whole family there at the same time!

Grandma Robin feeding Lila.....

Uncle Mike helping John decorate his gingerbread train (these next photos are a little blurry because the camera was cold from having been in Daddy's truck for awhile).....

Aunt Katharine and Aunt Andrea (Mommy's two sisters) -- don't they look alike?!
Uncle Randy, Grandpa Harry and Uncle Jarey drinking coffee out of their matching Christmas mugs -- how cute!
Jordan and Jillian watching some tv -- Jordan and John were little buddies, as were Jillian and Lila! It was great to finally meet the two of them.
John giving his best Zoolander impression in front of his gingerbread train.....
A photo for the ages --- Aunt Katharine and Grandpa Harry trying to clean out the sink drain.....
Another shot of Lila eating her banana.....
John sampling some icing.....
Now it's Uncle David's turn to help with the decorating.....
Lila found a new toy -- the computer mouse!