Tuesday, December 27, 2011

We wish you a...

Dear Maya,

Merry Christmas!!!

Your first Christmas was not exactly as we expected--our schedule was kind of touch and go and you and mommy ended up catching colds, but it was still a very wonderful, special time.

Gifts started arriving for you several days before Christmas. There were deliveries of an awesome rocking frog and a fun fill and spill toy from Grandma and Papa Stan, some adorable outfits and a cuddly doll from Grandma Theresa, and some beautiful finger puppets from mommy's friend Amy. Also, mommy finally got around to something she'd been wanting to make for a long time--yarn-covered wooden letters spelling out your name for over your new crib. And of course they matched the colors in your new bedding!

On Christmas Eve we had a pretty relaxing day. Mommy baked some sugar cookies to add to the mugs of treats Uncle Matt and I had made to give out to relatives. We made one with your hand print to leave for Santa, and you got to eat a few of them yourself over the last three days. Other new foods you tried this past week were were muenster cheese, green pepper, and your Great Grandma's cookies and biscuits. The adults weren't the only ones eating their way through this holiday!

On Christmas Day we woke up early and got ready to go to your great grandparents' house. You were dressed in the prettiest little dress of red velvet and white tulle layers with black tights and patent leather shoes. No one could stop oohing and aahing over how cute you looked. You didn't let your runny nose slow you down as you visited with relatives and opened your presents--warm pajamas and a sweet musical toy from your great grandparents and your first 'laptop' from your great uncle and aunt!

We came back home in the afternoon and you got a decent nap in. Then it was on to round two of presents--your favorite of the gifts Aunt Rhi and Uncle Matt gave you was a wooden pull-along snail. You walked around with it trailing after you all afternoon! In the evening Aunt Bobbie, Aunt Kelsie and Shawn came over and you got a few more presents and had some more yummy food before calling it a night. It was a tiring day but a wonderful day for you and everyone around you.

Now it's time to start preparing for the next big event--your first birthday! Mommy's working on planning for your party next weekend and I hope you enjoy it! Love you!

P.S. Your new phrase, usually repeated only in front of mommy and daddy despite many tries: "Ho ho ho!" Ah, well. Here's to next Christmas!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Here comes Santa Claus!

Dear Maya,

It's been another busy, Christmassy week around here.

You attended your first Christmas party at daddy's boss' house on Saturday night. After a short while being shy and sitting on mommy's lap, you warmed up to everyone and started running around like you owned the place. You got to try your first red bell pepper, Brussels sprouts and some pineapple and you loved them all. Aside from falling into the Christmas tree comically and getting just a little bit whiny when it got to be past your bedtime, you were very well-behaved and everyone loved you.

On Sunday you got to meet Santa Claus at a local nursery! We were so lucky that there were very few children there so we didn't have to wait long to meet him. At first you cried a little when mommy went to put you on his lap, but when I sat down next to him with you on my lap, you were just fine. He got one tiny little smile out of you when he tickled your belly, but the rest of the time you were straight-faced, even when he put his jingle bells on your shoe! Santa told mommy not to blink because you'll be all grown up before we know it. Tell me about it--you're almost one already!

At the nursery there was also a hallway filled with fun displays like robotic elves and lit up reindeer, but you didn't seem too impressed. Outside they even had some goats, chickens and an alpaca, too, but nothing got much of a reaction from you. I guess you were still recovering from staying out late partying the night before!

Last night mommy finally got around to doing something she had been meaning to do for a couple of weeks--making you your own little mini Christmas tree. We have a sad little artificial tree we weren't using, and the top section of it was the perfect size for you. Mommy anchored it in an oatmeal container (Uncle Matt's idea) disguised with white tissue paper. Add some lights, unbreakable ornaments like jingle bells and your Santa hat that you don't like wearing and, voila! A tree just for you!

Well, there are cards to be written and presents to be wrapped, so mommy is going to sign off for tonight. Love you!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Your nose gets a-chillin'

a silly outtake from our Christmas card photo shoot

Dear Maya,

It has been a week full of wonderful winter-y Christmas-y fun with you, my dear.

On Thursday morning when we woke up there were a couple inches of snow on the ground. It was the perfect chance to try out your new snowsuit and your mittens. You didn't mind them as much as mommy thought you would, probably because you were too busy trying to eat the snow again! Mommy made a snowman just about your size and at first you didn't seem interested, but then you helped put his arm on (after taking it off a couple times) and even patted him on the head.

On Saturday we went with Auntie Rhi and Uncle Matt to cut down our Christmas tree. It was so, so, cold! Your mittens were in the wash and you wouldn't keep your gloves on, so daddy wrapped you tightly in a blanket with your hood up and snuggled you until we could find a tree and cut it down. We decorated it after putting you to bed that night, and every time you've seen it since, you've been drawn to the glittery ornaments like you were last week with the other tree. We just wish you'd stop trying to lick the glitter off of them!

This morning Santa Claus brought your first presents--a new crib and pretty bedding from mommy and daddy with a new crib mattress from Grandma and Poppa Stan! Auntie Rhi helped mommy put it all together this afternoon and when we put you in it you jumped around so excitedly. And when we asked, "Do you like it?" you quite clearly answered us, "Like it!" You brought tears to mommy's eyes. Unfortunately tonight when we put you down to sleep in it the first time you cried for a little while, but you'll get used to it soon hopefully.

And finally, the weekly foods-you-eat update. This week we went to the library's Mother Goose holiday party, and you ate your first baked sweet--a mini blueberry muffin! Since then you've also had blueberries in your morning oatmeal, some homemade bread daddy made into a sort of stuffing for you, and mommy's homemade chicken rice soup with onion, carrots, celery and radish (those last two were new to you). We also finally got you some good sippy cups that don't leak, but you're not drinking from them well just yet.

Well, mommy needs some shuteye in case you don't sleep well in your new bed. Love you!

Monday, December 5, 2011

What child is this?

Dear Maya,

December has arrived! Your first Christmas and first birthday are almost here! When did that happen?!?

"Daddy, keep that shampoo out of my eyes, kay?"

Lately it's been a bit busy around here but you pretty much go with the flow--like when you're in the kitchen you do get under our feet but sometimes you also help close the cabinet and refrigerator doors. Mommy would rather you not close them while she is trying to get something out, but it's sweet you're trying to help.

"I'm gonna borrow your car for a bit, okay Aunt Kelsie?"

Speaking of the kitchen, your appetite has certainly increased in the last two weeks. It seems Thanksgiving awakened you to the idea of eating a lot and you're not turning back. We can hardly turn around after filling your tray or feeding you a bite and you're ready for more. You now eat soy beans, tofu and you love nori.

"Ready for nap time, mommy"

Your personality is really shining lately, too. Tonight at the dinner table we adults were all having a lively conversation and it was as if you were interjecting your thoughts, too, in the form of joyful shouts and breathy giggles. You have such an adorable sense of humor. Also, a new phrase you repeat quite often is "good girl," and mommy swears she even heard you say it the other day after hearing the Japanese equivalent, "oriko." Could it be that you are simultaneously translating already?

"What's that big thing in the dining room?" *rubs eyes*

Today mommy and Auntie Rhi set up a Christmas tree in the dining room while you were napping, and you seemed a little confused but amused when you woke up. You didn't quite help us with the decorating--actually you kept taking all the glitter ornaments back off the tree--but it was fun to watch you run around and enjoy the process. This weekend we're going to get a real tree and decorate it with more traditional decorations and colors, but for today we used these cool, modern colors to make a fun tree.

"So this stuff gets hung on that tree there? Sounds easy enough"

"I'll just untangle these beads here for ya"

"Here--you guys hang this up and I'll supervise"

Well, mommy needs to finish up and get some sleep. You've been getting up at 4:30 every morning lately so our days start very early. We've got a new idea we're trying out starting tomorrow, though. Hopefully we can help convince you to stay in bed at least until 5:00... Sigh...

Love you!