Saturday, December 31, 2011

Belly Watched

It’s been a year of our little E’s adventures. We like to joke that the only thing that’s grown on her is her hair, but we know that’s not true. She’s a little taller, a little heavier, and a whole lot more talkative. It’s been amazing to watch the course of the year as she’s changed from a baby to a little girl. When I started this blog, she could say “momma” and “dada.” But now, she can tell you “happy New Year” and the names of dinosaurs, “brachiosaurus” is a favorite. 

She asks to start each morning with “Os and milk time” but she still wants to be carried down the stairs to get them. She insists of feeding herself most of her meals, and currently prefers to eat them on “momma’s lap lap lap.” She’s a dada’s girl at bedtime and nap time, he’s the only one who can put her to bed. 

E has hit a lot of milestones this year, some good, some bad. She:
1.       Got her first pair of hard bottomed shoes
2.       Had her first public tantrum
3.       Broken the 20 pound mark
4.       Gotten her first timeout
5.       Eaten wheat
6.       Tried juice (and learned that there is no juice at her house)
7.       Gotten skinned knees (and face) from playing outside
8.       Made friends
9.       Been weaned
10.   Spent the summer with dada
11.   Learned how to open presents
12.   Spent the night away from momma and dada
13.   Slept through the night (sometimes, since October)
14.   Become a good helper
15.   Got hooked on two TV shows, Sesame street and Dinosaur Train

I started this blog a year ago largely because I felt like as a working mom, I missed so much and my time with E was so short that I needed to capture what we were doing. It gets hard to remember what’s happened, things move so quickly and she changes so rapidly. When you have a kid, people tell you the time flies and you don’t really believe them. But they are so right. Some of this blog was also born out of stress , when I was pumping at work and watching my milk supply decline, I started looking for supply increasing tips online, that’s where I came across the idea for a daily picture diary. I’m glad that my stress and worry turned me here. As a parent, most stress and worry doesn’t turn into something so productive, and with such a visible result. 

E has been the bright spot in what has been a difficult year for our family. The changes in Wisconsin have had a huge impact on us, and we struggle to comprehend what exactly they mean for us, and what they will mean for our future. Things feel a whole lot less secure then they did for us a year ago, and we’ve started to rethink the way we thought our life would turn out. We’ve made hard decisions about what we can cut, if and how we can put E in daycare, and even when we might be able to have another child.  We dream of moving to a house, with a yard for E, but that dream moved further away from us this year. Here’s hoping for next year. For E’s dada and I, If there was ever a year to chronicle, this was probably it. I’m sure that certain memories and events have gotten lost from our minds as we worried about other things. If E ended the year smarter, more active, and soaking in everything, I think dada and I ended the year more cynical, stressed, and with low workplace morale. We’ve done our best to leave such things are work, so that we are ready to play when we walk through the door.

But, back to E, she just shines for us. We are reminded daily how lucky we are to have her, and how special she is. We hope she doesn’t mind being smothered with kisses, and having her belly rubbed. She’s grown from our Belly-boo to our Bean, or Beanie Girl, and has even called herself Bean on occasion. She remains our Adventure Girl, as she proved today by jumping off a recliner. As much as I’d love her to stay this age forever, I’m excited to see what the next year brings for her and what she learns.  

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