Sunday, December 26, 2010

Tasty . . . I think!


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On the advice of Markin's pediatrician, we waited until 6 months to try rice cereal and today is the day! I think it was successful :) It wasn't even too messy, so I know at least a few bites made it in and stayed in.

6 months old!






I can't believe Markin is 6 months old! And it just keeps getting better and better. 6 months is a great age!
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Markin weighs 15 pounds and 11 ounces with a diaper on. She is 25 1/2 inches long.
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Likes: Christmas! She loves the wrapping paper, the presents/new toys, and all of the attention that she got :) She has a lot of new favorite toys - and can figure out how to play with them.
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Dislikes: Falling asleep on her own - someone got a little spoiled during the holidays and thinks she can only fall asleep with mommy feeding her. Hope it's just because we weren't home and were out of our usual bedtime routine and that we can break this habit before she goes back to day care!
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New accomplishments: eating rice cereal and almost sitting up on her own for 2-3 seconds.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Santa came!


Markin must've been a good girl - Santa came! She was really excited and woke up at 6:00 - something she hasn't done in months! Guess she just couldn't wait to see what Santa brought her :)

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Mommy must've been a bad girl - no presents from Santa for her AND he brought noisy toys for Markin! Guess she'll have to try harder to be good in 2011!

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Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve



This is Markin's first Christmas Eve. So much fun! She's not too interested in the tree, but loves the presents (mainly the wrapping paper). She's a little too young to enjoy our tradition of eating nibblies and playing a game (maybe next year), but it was still a very fun night!

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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Where's Markin?


Oh, no! G'ma lost the baby :)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Hair!

Too much hair!

When does the shedding stop? It started around the time Markin turned 3 months old and hasn't stopped or slowed down. Everytime I wash it, it falls out by the handful (5+ hand fulls) and I clog the drain. Then more comes out when I brush it! I have plenty of hair, so I'm not worried about being bald (like a friend of mine was after her last kiddo - it never did grow back in that spot), I'm just tired of having hair everywhere. Poor little Markin seems to be covered in it and actually got it wrapped around her fingers and it cut off the circulation. Now, whenever she cries, that's one of the first things I check.


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And Markin's hair - can't believe how long it is. It makes her look a lot older than she is. This picture is just for Jen78 :) Yes, this is not a trick - Markin's hair goes a few inches down her back. It's actually long enough that I could braid it if I wanted to - but who has the time? I barely have time to get it out of her eyes in the morning. Might be time for baby's first haircut soon :)

Friday, November 26, 2010

5 months




Time is just flying by! Markin is already 5 months old. She's full of smiles, loves playing, and is a little chatter box! Despite the pictures above, she's a very happy little girl and full of smiles (I took these around bedtime, as you can tell by the thumb sucking :)

She's 15 pounds and 1 ounce (with a diaper), and 23 and 3/4 inches long.

Likes: Markin's favorite toys lately are still anything that hangs down, such as the floor gym, toys that are attached to her car seat handle, or ones that hang down from bars on the exersaucer. She also loves her crinkly kitty still. She's also getting into story time and likes to "help" me turn the pages of the books. She's really into exploring things with her hands and is working on hand-eye and hand-foot coordination. Favorite game is still "pat-a-cake" with her feet, of course.

Dislikes: being "gassy" (she cried for a half hour tonight because of that - then we got some big burps and all was better)

New accomplishments: Markin can sit up in a bumbo seat now! Also, she's starting to put her arms up for me to pick her up when she sees me. Wow - just when I thought it can't get any better, it does :)

Baby's first Black Friday



Well, Markin and I scored some good deals, even if we didn't get started until 10:00. She was an excellent little shopper - full of smiles and flirted with everyone who stopped to tell her hello. She even put off her next meal by over an hour and let me get one more store in! As a reward, she picked out a new toy - her first baby doll. Everytime she saw it, she'd start smiling and laughing and I couldn't convince her the doll I liked was a better choice, so of course we got the one she likes.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Giving Thanks



Happy Thanksgiving! I have so much to be thankful for this year -mainly one healthy, happy baby girl :) Being a mother to such a wonderful little girl is the best thing in the world and I'm so thankful that things worked out the way they did so that she's part of my life. Just love her so much!

We had a very nice, low-key day. Our family is in Florida, so we hung out with friends who are practically family. Markin slept in until 8:30, then we went shopping (had to get the newspaper so we could see all of the deals we're going to miss out on for Black Friday since I have no desire to risk having something happen to Markin over saving a few dollars - we'll get any "left over" deals that happen later in the day). After her next meal, we went to our friends' house and had dinner - and they had lots of vegetarian options for me to choose from (more than my family provides for me!) Now we're home and just hanging out, trying to get warm - I am NOT ready for this cold weather and am very jealous of the warm temps our family is having in Florida.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Baptism




Markin was baptised today. I decided to get her baptized in my grandparents' church on my grandpa's birthday :) (I lost my grandparents 2 years ago - very unexpectedly. I was really close to them, which is why Markin is named after them.) She's wearing a dress that my mom made for her, with mother-of-pearl buttons from a dress my grandma wore when she was little. My sister tatted the pink lace and flowers to add to it. Rachael gave her the adorable bonnet made from a handkerchief for her to use on her wedding day (will post the poem later). I bought her a nice cross necklace to wear now and on other special occasions, such as her confirmation. What a special day, surrounded by friends and family.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

4 months old




Markin is 4 months old today. Time is flying by so fast! She weighs 13 pounds 7 ounces and is 23 1/2 inches long.

Likes: Her thumb, of course. Playing - with her hands, her toys (kitty cat crinkly toy from her newborn pics is a favorite lately), stuffed animals that she can chew on, her floor gym and bouncy seat, and she loves things that play music. She likes story time and telling stories (a.k.a. "talking"). She also enjoys stroller rides and cuddling.

Dislikes: empty bottles

New accomplishments: Blowing bubbles - so cute! Markin also sticks out her tongue after I do and when I ask "Where's Markin's tongue?" She's also getting really good at hand-eye and foot-eye coordination. Also - she grabbed her feet for the first time last weekend and now she won't stop grabbing them. Adorable!

Making mommy feel loved: When I picked her up at day care tonight, she was playing with the floor gym. I went over, said hi but decided to let her play while I gathered her empty bottles and other things. All of a sudden she started crying! Danielle (her "teacher") was shocked because Markin NEVER cries - but nothing was wrong. I went over to her and all of a sudden she gets a huge grin on her face. She just wanted me to stay with her and was afraid I was leaving her again :) While I love that she was happy to see me, I hope she doesn't get upset when I leave her in the morning because then I'd have a miserable day worrying about her being unhappy all day.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Out of room!

Well, they say that baby's things take up more room than you expect - and they certainly do! In addition to our house overflowing with all of the baby gear (there's a narrow path through the living room between the swing, bouncy seat, floor gym, bumbo, boppy pillow and all of the toys), the freezer is also overflowing with breast milk. After Markin was born, I bought a small upright freezer to store breast milk and food - while small, it should've met the needs of a family of 5 according to the suggested guidelines of how much space you should need. When I first bought it, I was so excited to have extra freezer space that I bought lots of veggies, several frozen pizzas, and 2 kinds of ice cream (things I usually bought 1-at-a-time or not at all with my limited freezer space) and it was still pretty bare in there, even with the frozen meals my mom made me since she knew that I wouldn't have time to cook for myself with a baby. Well, for the past month, I've been trying to get rid of all of that extra food, along with trying every way possible to rearrange in there to get as much milk stored as possible. Well, the food is out of there and it's still overflowing with Markin's milk. I put 155 ounces in there from this past week but Markin ate less than 5o ounces from the freezer during that same time span. I know this is a good problem to have, but HELP! I've been looking on craigslist for a cheap freezer, but not finding much. Don't want anything too expensive and only plan to use it for more 6 months or so (I want to get her through cold and flu season - hoping my supply holds out that long :), but since a can of formula costs around $25, getting a used one will pay for itself, right? If you have a cheap freezer for sale - let me know!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A lifetime ago

It's so hard to believe that my entire life changed for the better exactly one year ago today, even if I didn't know it at the time. I had my egg retrieval and Markin was conceived on this day a year ago.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Sniffles

Oh, no! It's cold season! And we've both caught one - me first, and I probably gave it to Markin but I'd prefer to think that her cousins gave it to both of us :) I actually have laryngitis, and Markin can't figure out why I'm not talking to her! She likes the whispers at first, but then looks really puzzled. At least during the week she had people who could talk to her at day care - she won't have that this weekend. Bet she'll be glad to go back to day care on Monday.

She has just a little bit of the sniffles, combined with lots of sneezes and a little cough. She doesn't really have a runny nose - all of a sudden it's just there, like she blew her nose. Very easy to wipe up. Wonder if that means it'll be easy to teach her how to blow her nose (it's not an easy thing to teach - and I have plenty of practice trying to teach preschoolers how to do it!)

Meal times were a little difficult. She'd drink for a while, then let go to breathe. Then, if she couldn't latch on right away again, she'd say "ehh" and wait for me to stick it in her mouth. "Ehh" was more of a "help" then a "please" - guess we'll have to work on manners someday :) -- but at least it wasn't crying! I rely on the weekends to actually get some quality time feeding her but I'm considering letting her have my pumped milk in bottles instead because it'd be easier for her to drink when she's stuffy - easier mainly because she drinks faster from a bottle. At day care, I've been giving her fresh milk instead of what I have frozen (a whole freezer full :) because I'm hoping my antibodies will keep her from getting too sick.

We've been doing a lot of cuddling. She definitely wanted to be held all day. Not sure if that was related to not feeling well or a new stage she's going through. Hoping it's a stage - I enjoyed getting to hold her and was glad we had an easy day so that I could just sit around cuddling her all day.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

3 months





My baby is 3 months old already! She went to the doctor for the other shots that most babies get at 2 months - in addition to it being better for her to spread out the shots (and easier on me for her to get 2 quick pokes instead of many before I get to comfort her), it gives me an additional chance to check in with her doctor's office on her development and get a weight and length for her. Her 3 month stats are: 12 pounds and 4 ounces, 23 inches long!

Favorite activities: eating, taking a bath (as long as mommy sings "scrub-a-dub-dub" song to her), watching those funny cats, sucking her thumb, playing with the toys on her floor gym and bouncy seat. She also loves her new squeaky giraffe (I fought buying this for her - who spends $20 on the equilvalent of a "dog toy?" However, I ended up getting it for her since so many people said it was their baby's favorite toy and I have to admit Markin loves it - it got many smiles and even a giggle during her 3 month photo session.)

Least favorite activity: hiccupping (which happens a lot, unfortunately)

Newest accomplishment: Markin rolled over from her back to her front all by herself tonight! She was playing with her floor gym and looking at herself in the mirror that was off to her left side, so I was busy getting things done. All of a sudden, she make some mad noises and when I looked to see what was wrong, she was on her tummy! I helped her roll back and she almost did it again, but since I had the video camera ready that time, she decided to wait until I wasn't ready :)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Mommy's losing it!

So, most babies grow up in a home with 2 parents and get to hear lots of adult conversations, have 2 people talking to them, and are exposed a language-rich environment naturally. Well, Markin doesn't have that, so I'm trying to create that for her - I talk to her about all of my daily activities, such as making dinner, showering, washing dishes, etc. along with what she's doing (which mostly is kicking, batting at her toys, looking at things, smiling, hiccupping and those occasional big yawns). Well, I think I'm losing it - I found myself talking about switching laundry from the washing machine to the dryer in the middle of the night and realized that she was upstairs asleep! I admitted this to the speech-language pathologist that works with some of my students and she said that it was a good thing it was so automated for me now, but I still think I'm losing it! Maybe I can blame it on lack of sleep???

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Green-eyed monster

I was talking to someone the other day and they were expecting #3 - and got pregnant easily, with this one being an "oops," of course. The green-eyed monster reared his ugly head and I was jealous that it was so easy for them when it was so hard for me. And it's silly, because I thank God on a daily basis that all of my previous attempts had failed and it was my October cycle that was successful because it gave me Markin - if anything else had worked, I wouldn't have HER and I can't imagine my life without her in it.

Okay - I'm getting philosophical. Feel free to stop reading: And I think that there may be one more baby in store for me - from my July cycle's snowbabies. I think God's plan was to give me Markin - which is why there were problems with my uterus in July but we were able to freeze the 4 embryos, and I got the partial refund so that I was able to do another fresh IVF cycle in October. If I had done a frozen transfer that month, she wouldn't be here, and my life wouldn't be as perfect as it is right now! But there's a reason those 4 are frozen and waiting for me, right?

Thinking about those snowbabies - they were conceived in July, Markin was conceived in October. If you think life begins at conception, technically a baby born from those embryos would be older than Markin :)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Jitterbug

I finally remembered to bring my camera into day care when I picked her up. Here's a video of Markin "dancing" to the music - she'll only do this at day care. Suppose that means she doesn't like my music? :)

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Monday, September 20, 2010

The red dress

My mom gave me the red dress that I wore in a picture when I was 7 1/2 weeks old. I had Markin's 2 month pictures taken in the same red dress. It was a little big on her (especially the panties - cloth diapers were a lot bulkier than her Huggies are), but the pictures turned out great! Here are pictures of us wearing that red dress.

I think she kind of looks like me, but not too much at this point (think she actually has more hair than I did and I was a lot chubbier) - but wait until I post my 6 month pictures in December. Will also try to post the donor's baby picture at that time.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Playing

I've been getting all of these notes from day care telling me how much Markin enjoyed playing with the floor gym. And I kept thinking - "yeah, right - what's so great about laying there looking at the toys." Well, one afternoon when I picked her up last week I got to see her playing with the floor gym and she does enjoy it! Duh - you use extra links to lower the toys to her!!! Can't believe I didn't think of that - and called my sister to chew her out for not telling me to do that, and turns out she didn't think of it either! Now Markin loves playing with her floor gym (thanks Kim and Maeve for giving it to her) and the toys on her bouncy seat. I'm attaching 2 videos of her playing: one with the floor gym (the mirror is at her right and she does enjoy admiring herself in mirrors) and the other is from last night - notice how she's playing with it!

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My sister pointed out that Markin's development is a little different from most babies - she has poor neck/head control, but is great at controlling her feet! She actually prefers that I play Pat-a-Cake with her feet instead of her hands!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

This little piggy

This little piggy went to market
This little piggy stayed home
This little piggy had cookies
This little piggy had none
And this little piggy went "wee wee wee wee"
all the way home!

I painted Markin's toe nails - aren't they pretty?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Out with the old, in with the new

Well, they're not really old and the others aren't really new, just new to us. I put away some of Markin's first clothes - the newborn size that she actually wore through last week. I noticed that they were a little tight on her arms and legs and she couldn't straighten her legs all of the way in the sleepers, so it was time to put them away (sniff sniff - I really love some of those outfits). Auntie Karisa sent us home last weekend with a big tub of my nieces' clothes, sized 3-12 months, that they've outgrown. I washed all of them, sorted them by size, and put them away so they'll be ready when she is. Right now, the 0-3 month size is fitting really well - big around the tummy but almost perfect length-wise, but it's time to start looking at the 3-6 size for some of those warmer outfits for the upcoming cool fall days.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Success!

We made it through the whole vampire movie tonight! Markin enjoyed watching the first 15 minutes of it before falling soundly asleep and stayed asleep the whole time.

Friday, September 10, 2010

All thumbs


Yes, it's now official that Markin is a thumb sucker, despite all of my attempts to make her a binky girl. We've tried every kind of binky imaginable and she rejects them all - she makes a funny face and uses her little tongue to spit it out quite forcefully. If you hold it in, she scrunches up her face and the second you let go, the binky is out. She now can get her thumb (almost always her left thumb) in her mouth with very little effort. On the bright side, she was going to need braces anyway :)

On a brighter note, Markin has mastered the art of going 5-6 hours between feedings at night, so she's only waking up once. I'm thrilled! Now if I can just get myself used to getting that much sleep again - I've been trying to use that time to get things done but need to give myself permission to let some things go and get some sleep so I'm not too tired the next day.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

2 nights in a row - can we go for 3?

Markin has slept from 10:00ish until after 3:30 in the morning for 2 nights in a row. Yes, that's over 5 hours of solid sleep for the little one. I can't seem to go that long without needing to feed her or pump, but I'm thrilled she can! And I figure if I gradually lengthen the amount of time between feedings or pumpings, my body will soon adjust also and I'll be able to start sleeping through the night also :)

One small drawback - she often thinks that it's time to be up for the day at that point. And I still need a couple more hours of sleep!

On another topic - we went to the breast feeding support group Tuesday night so I could weigh Markin. She weighs 11 pounds and 2 ounces. No wonder that car seat is feeling heavy!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Baby's first vampire movie


. . . didn't go as well as Mommy hoped it would. Eclipse came out right after Markin was born so I didn't get a chance to see it. I decided to wait until it was in the cheap theaters ($5 is better than $10!) so that if we had to leave half way though, I wouldn't be out as much. Well, we attempted it tonight and we only made it 45 minutes into the movie. She wasn't crying and having a fit, but was noisy enough that I was afraid she'd bother those around us. They were nice enough to give me a pass to go back in a week and try again - but we'll see. The dvd should be out in a couple of months (plus, the movie deviated so much from the book that I'm not too anxious to see it anymore - one major goof was that Jasper, who graduated the previous year in the book, was back in HS. In fact, not sure there was anything in the movie similar to the book at all!)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

2 months old





Markin is 2 months old today. She had her pediatrician appointment this afternoon and she weighed 10 pounds 5 ounces (40% percentile) and was 22.5 inches long (60%) - the doctor said that was just about perfect! Everything looked fine and Markin survived her 2 shots (we're using Dr. Sear's alternate vaccination schedule, with the exception of moving up the hep B shots because she's in day care).

We went to my old school today and showed the kids the baby that was growing in my tummy all of last year. They were really excited to see her and held her very gently. One first grader kept playing "this little piggy" with her toes :)

After our busy day, Markin helped mommy at school - she was SO GOOD!!! I got lots done and will hopefully be ready for our open house tomorrow afternoon.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

"Someone's been eating my porridge"


Or, more accurately, "Someone's been wearing my diapers." My little Goldilocks is having trouble finding diapers that are "just right." Swaddlers size 1 are too big (they leaked all over both of us!), Swaddlers newborn are too small - and we haven't found "baby bear's just right" ones yet.

Friday, August 20, 2010

And the prize for "best baby ever" goes to . . . Markin!

She's such a good baby that I often tell her that she's the best baby ever. She also hears that from her grandparents (and compared to her cousin who was colicky, they love the fact that Markin rarely cries -- fortunately, Naliya is now the happiest, smiliest baby ever and you almost forget the months and months of crying). Well, I was teasing my mom that I expected Markin's day care to tell me that she was the best baby ever. She told me that they wouldn't be allowed to say that (can't show favoritism) - and they didn't, but they did tell me over and over what a good baby she was. Well, a co-worker had lunch today with one of the "teachers" in Markin's room and she told my co-worker that Markin was the best baby ever - so that makes it official (my sister even agrees with the statement as long as best means easiest.)

Of course, I have to admit we had a rough afternoon. I took her to my old school to meet everyone and she had a tantrum! She was just over tired and couldn't fall asleep. As soon as I put her in her car seat, she was happy and fell asleep as soon as the car started to move.

First day of "school"




Markin went to day care for the first time today. It was just a half day, but still hard for me to leave her with strangers! When I picked her up, they commented on what a good baby she was. She hung out on the floor with everyone and had fun "playing." However, she slept through the art project - which I'm fine with. I'm sure it would be cute and part of it is just getting to experience it, but I'm pretty picky about art projects with my students. I had a paraprofessional (associate) one time who would make our students art projects perfect (basically do it for them) - and parents don't want something that's perfect and done by the teacher, they want what their child makes! (We butted heads all of the time on this topic.)

Of course, we did our "first day of school" pics - the first one is from when I dropped her off, the next one is from when I picked her up. She was sound asleep and didn't wake up for another 2 hours. Seems like I missed her more than she missed me, which is the only way I'd want it.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Helping Mommy


Well, even though I'm still on maternity leave, I need to get my classroom ready for the kiddos to come. Class starts on August 3oth for me, but I need to do home visits next week with all of my families. I've been trying to work in my classroom for a couple of hours each day, and Markin is coming along to "help." Today we even went to the staff meeting - everyone commented on what a good baby she is! She was awake and sat quietly in her car seat for the first 40 minutes, then decided to take a nap for the rest of the meeting. Maybe my principal will just let me bring her to work with me everyday and I won't have to leave her at day care - wouldn't that be great??? (the direct quote from my principal was "Wow! What a good baby! Glad you joined us!") The kiddos in my classroom would probably love it as well, if they're anything like my 4 year old niece!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Baby's first tattoo


Well, when I got back from the funeral on Saturday, the first thing I noticed was that Markin had a tattoo - courtesy of my 4 year old niece!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

a difficult day

Today was a hard day all around. One of my college roommates' father was killed in a motorcycle accident, along with 3 other motorcyclists, on Monday. Very tragic - he was a great man. I felt I needed to go and pay my respects and support my friend, so I asked my sister to watch Markin. I figured it would be easier to leave her for the first time with family instead of strangers. It was hard for me to walk out the door without her (I left a lot later than I should have, only making it to the funeral with 5 minutes to spare by the time I got done pumping), but I did it knowing she'd be in good hands. Sounds like she had a good time with her auntie, uncle, and cousins. It was a long 8 hours without her, but I'm glad I went.
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Markin's first stroller ride - on her way back from a garage sale

Markin with Naliya's "baby" and the stuffed animal Kalini bought for her

Kalini and Markin hanging out

Sunday, August 8, 2010

First bottle


I fed Sweet Pea and she fell asleep, so I decided to pump and see if I could get a little more milk to freeze for when I go back to work in 2 weeks (I'm taking the full 8 weeks because of the c-section and will skip the first week of inservice meetings. There's almost 200 ounces in our freezer now ready for her when I have to leave her at day care, which is going to be so hard!). Well, as soon as I finished pumping, Markin woke up and started making her hungry noises. I decided we might as well try a bottle to see how it goes. She was unsure about it at first but caught on quickly.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

6 weeks



Sweet Pea is 6 weeks old already. She's getting so big! Markin weighs about 9 pounds and 5 ounces.

Today I got a genuine smile - definitely not gas! She was asleep in my arms and when she woke up and saw me, she smiled at me. My heart melted.