Sunday, November 27, 2011

One Year Old and 16 Flights Later

Today, Allie completed her 16th flight!  She has been on 16 flights since the day she was born, all before her 1st birthday.  Before Allie, flying was wonderful!  I'd read my book, listen to my iPod, SLEEP!  Not anymore.

In the beginning, flying wasn't so bad.  Allie would usually fall fast asleep in my arms and wake as we were landing.  The hard part was planning how I was going to go through security with a bag, a stroller, a car seat, milk...and a baby.  Now, I got that down to a science.  We have two car seats (one at each home) so I don't have to worry about that.  I keep Allie in the stroller until all my stuff is on the security belt and going through.  Then I get her out and have the security guys take the stroller through and wand it down by was too hard to fold and lift it up on the belt all while holding Allie.  And after the guy in front of me got his exact same stroller STUCK in the machine three times and held up the line for a good 15 minutes...I'm not going to take that chance and be "that girl."

When Allie turned about 7 months old, the flights became more difficult.  She is now very active and doesn't want to sit or sleep.  Her hands are everywhere, touching everything.  I usually give her some crackers or Cheerios to eat to keep her busy.  However, she LOVES to touch everything, including whoever the lucky person is who sits next to us.  Having a middle seat is just NOT an option...could you imagine?  I know that on every flight, I will have to apologize (more than once) for Allie's slobbery, cracker covered hands. 

Once I scheduled our flight during her usual nap time.  Bad idea!  It never fails... there is ALWAYS someone sitting near us on the plane that wants to play peek-a-boo with Allie and try to make her laugh and smile.  This happens on EVERY flight.  So trying to get a cranky, tired baby to go to sleep on a very well lit plane with little old ladies playing peek-a-boo with you...not a chance!  Allie was not having it.  Now, I try to schedule flights during her wake time...if possible.  I usually have a stash of goodies to keep her occupied.  Toys, cheerios, Delta peanut packets, the emergency escape plans pamphlet in the back of the seat pocket.  Flying is stressful with an infant.  And like clockwork, as we descend Allie lets out her cries.  I still don't know if it's her ears hurting from the altitude, or if she's just had enough..."Get me off this plane!"  This is when I get really worked up.  The plane shuts off, it's quiet...and Allie is screaming...and everyone is staring.  This is when I'm "that girl."

This past flight was a dream...Allie wasn't feeling so well so I gave her Benadryl right before we boarded.  During take off, my perfect little girl feel fast asleep in my arms.  Why does this not happen on every flight?  For the first time ever we also had an empty seat next to us.  We hit the jackpot!  I gently laid Allie down on the seat and she slept the entire flight.  I didn't know what to do with myself.  I didn't have a book or a magazine.  I didn't bring my iPod.  Why would I have these things?  I used to bring them and would NEVER use them.  So, I stopped.  I ended up just sitting and starring at my Allie girl snoozing away, so peaceful.  In the future, I'm going to be very tempted to bring Benadryl with me on every flight.

Allie earned her wings

Saturday, November 26, 2011

A Boston Birthday

The Boston Birthday Girl

Allie is officially turning one year old next week.  While here in Boston, we thought it would be fun to have a birthday celebration with Allie's Boston buddies.  Allie probably has more friends here in Boston than in Michigan, lol.  It took a little pre-planning, but I was able to get everything out here we needed for her party.  When Todd came back the week before, I sent him with some supplies.  I brought the rest when we came. 

Allie invited her good buddies Anja, Conor and Adele.  All the babes played together while they let their mommies have lunch.  Allie really liked her cupcake.  I learned from Allie's cake smash that she did not like cake frosting.  I tried to give her Cool Whip and she spit that right out too.  So, when making the birthday girl her cupcake, I decided to frost her cupcake with one of her all time favorite foods...GREEK YOGURT!  I put it in the piping bag and it came out perfectly!  Allie gobbled it up.  Yummmmy!

Thanks Anja, Conor and Adele for coming.  Allie was so excited to share her special day with such special friends.  She always looks forward to coming to Boston to see her buddies.

Allie with her buddies Anja, Conor and Adele

Friday, November 25, 2011

Happy 1st Thanksgiving, Allie!

This Thanksgiving I have a lot to be thankful for.  I'm so thankful my beautiful daughter, Allie, is in my life and that she is a GREAT baby (sleeping, eating and developing well).  She brings me joy and happiness each and every day.  I'm thankful for my family of three.  My heart is overwhelmed with love seeing my husband interact with Allie...such a joy.  I'm thankful that my husband absolutely LOVES his job and is a happier person because of it.  I'm so glad it is all that he thought it would be and more.  I'm thankful that my mom is in a better place.  This year was hard with her passing but I know it was for the best.  I believe she is watching over us and will see Allie grow up into a wonderful young lady. I'm thankful for my wonderful friends in both my homes...MI and MA.  Without you girls, I wouldn't be able to keep my head on straight throughout my crazy, unusual lifestyle.

This Thanksgiving, I didn't start off by feeling this way though.  I was a little bummed out that I wasn't going to spend Allie's first Thanksgiving in our HOME surrounded by our family.  I had envisioned my baby's first holiday's a certain way (long before she was born) and the way Thanksgiving happened this year, was not in my plan.  I wondered what Todd, Allie and I would do this Thanksgiving, being away from home.  I didn't want to cook the three of us dinner...not worth it.  I didn't want to go out to eat...depressing and non-special.  Luckily my new mommy friend, Karen, invited all three of us to her house for Thanksgiving dinner.  It was laid back, very casual, and a house full of was PERFECT!  We felt so welcomed!  Thank you Karen for including your new friends in your Thanksgiving holiday.  My Thanksgiving turned out to be a good one, when I at one time was convinced it was going to be a depressing one.  It made me realize that no matter what I had previously envisioned as Allie's 1st Thanksgiving...all that REALLY matters is that we were all together for Thanksgiving.

And the other thing that mattered is that I had a super cute outfit to put Allie in!  It was her only 1st Thanksgiving and there were a lot of photos taken.  She had to look her cutest ever!

Allie enjoying her Thanksgiving dinner...crackers, stuffing, celery, pumpkin pie and CHEESECAKE!

Allie brought home another adorable art project from day care for Thanksgiving.  It immediately went up on the refridgerator.  What an artist!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Today I Like Quacamole

Today, Allie likes guacamole.  It's not every day that she does.  In fact, every day is a surprise when it comes to what Allie will eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  What she gobbles up one day, the next she will throw on the floor.  In the beginning when I first started introducing solid foods to her, she would put everything to her mouth for a taste.  Now, she will only taste things that she either knows she likes, or is something new that she hasn't tried before.  But if it's something she has had, and isn't one of her staple foods, most likely she will turn her head away, or pick it up and toss it to the floor.  Throwing food is a whole other issue.

Allie LOVED, as you can tell, her guacamole today.  It was all over her hands, her face and even up her you can see from the picture.  Tomorrow she probably won't want guacamole though.  She has had enough for a bit.

A couple months ago Allie LOVED spaghetti.  I made spaghetti or some type of pasta weekly.  She really liked the sauce on the noodles I think.  She had the easiest time eating a penne noodle.  They were easy to grab.  If I made spaghetti noodles, I would cut them up and feed it to her on a spoon.  Now, I can't get her to eat any spaghetti.  Every time I put it in her mouth...back out it comes.  No more spaghetti!

Before that it was prunes.  Allie LOVED prunes...whole prunes (or as the bag called them now dried plums).  After every meal, Todd or I would get the bag out of the cabinet and Allie's eyes would become big and wide.  She would start yelling with excitement and wouldn't stop until we handed her a dried purple plum.  She would mangle the prune until all of the inside were eaten and only the skin was left.  But now, Allie will not put a prune to her mouth.  Enough was enough!

There have been a few foods that Allie has eaten all along.  When all else fails and she won't eat anything that I give her, I can always turn to one of these things...

  1. Peanut Butter (Yep!  Thank goodness she doesn't have an allergy to nuts)
  2. Applesauce
  3. Plain Greek Yogurt
  4. Oranges

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Cake Smash

This photo session was the BEST!  If you don't know what a cake smash is...I'll explain it to you.  It's the new up and coming thing to do with your baby as he/she turns one.  I saw these super cute storyboards online and HAD to do this with Allie. She is only this age once and I couldn't pass it up. 

With the help of our photographer, Denise Cantrell, we came up the cake, outfit and background.  I picked the color scheme I liked, she found the diaper cover and matching flower on Etsy (love this site...adorable, unique, one of kind things), and I made the cake.  My mom baked every single birthday cake I ever had when I was a kid.  I learned a thing or two from her. 

Allie had never tasted cake up to this point, or frosting.  I sat her in front of her giant cupcake.  At first she stuck her hand in the frosting.  She tasted it, but didn't really care for it.  She didn't want anything else to do with it at that point.  I broke off a piece of the cake and she immediately grabbed it and tasted it.  Yummmmmmy!  She went back for more...and more!

Next is when our session ended.  Allie pulled on the cake plate and the whole cupcake came tumbling down on her lap.  Frosting smeared all over her leg and stuck in between her toes.  She screamed!  We recently found out that Allie does not like to be messy.  I can understand why, because I was told I cried on my first birthday when my hands became messy.  A few more pictures were taken during Allie's cries, but pretty much our cake smash was over.

Overall, the cake smash was a success.  The storyboard is absolutely adorable.  I used this as Allie 1st birthday invitation.  Allie received a lot of compliments.  I would highly recommend doing a cake smash photo session...the pictures are priceless and you will always have that memory.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Baby Proofing

Gone are the days where I can freely open up the cabinet that houses the garbage can and cleaning supplies.  Gone are the days when I can leave my cell phone, the remote control, my laptop or another electronic device unattended.  Gone are the days when I can set Allie down to play independently and run the bathroom for a quick second and know she'll be in the exact same place I left her when I get back.  Gone is my freedom. 

Our house is officially baby proofed.  The baby gate is up.  The cabinet locks are on.  The door handle locks are on.  The table corner cushions are on.  My everyday living is a little more difficult.  It take a lot of effort to remember that you have cabinet locks on every cabinet in your kitchen...I often will yank them open to get whatever it is i need...and all of a sudden I'm surprised (for the third time that day) and remind myself again "Oh yeah...there are locks on those cabinets."  And at least 6 times a day I have to put the corner cushions BACK on the corners of the table because Allie likes to pull them off...all of them off.

I think Allie was a little surprised to find out that her toys (tupperware, pots and pan) are not as easily accessable as they were two days ago.  She doesn't seem too bothered by this though.  She's usually on to try the next one.  Maybe one day one of the these will open again????

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

11 Months Old

Allie is learning SO much!  She learned how to operate a few of her toys by pushing the buttons with her finger.  She also knows how to open and turn the pages of her books.  Allie loves taking baths and splashing in the water with her bath toys.  Allie learned how to clap her hands and even waved a couple times.  Opening the kitchen cabinets and shutting doors are one of Allies favorite things to do.  She likes to see what is in all the kitchen cabinets and  pull things out to investigate.  Allie is pulling up to stand on everything.  She is getting really good at moving around the house.  Allie likes to hold onto my hands and walk around.  Unfortunately, Allie became sick this month with a fever, runny nose, and a really bad diaper rash.  One more month to go before my baby is no longer a "baby."  I really cannot believe it!  It's only a matter of time before she is walking and toddling around.

Happy Halloween!

Allie brought home her first art project from day care. We put it right up on the refridgerator. I was so proud! Now I need to figure out a cute keepsake box where I can put all of Allie's many art projects she will bring home in the future.

I'm so cute, it's scary

My sweet, sweet strawberry!  I dressed Allie up as a strawberry for her 1st Halloween.  I'm surprised that she didn't pull the hat off because she usually will.  She must have really liked it. 

All my mommy friends with new babies needed a reason to put their kid in their costume more than we had a Halloween play date.  All the babes wore their costumes and we managed to get a few good shots out of the 50 or so we took.

After I decided that Allie would be a strawberry for Halloween, I thought it would be cute to dress up at Strawberry Shortcake. I teach 2nd grade this year and we ALL (kids and teachers) dress up for the Halloween parade and party.  Todd was home that day so he was able to bring Allie up to see me.  She the perfect accessory to my costume.  We were a bit hit!

On Halloween night, Allie went trick-or-treating with her good buddy, Ronald McDonald (aka: Austin).  It was a little chilly out that night so we only stayed out for a bit.  Allie trick-or-treated to a total of SIX houses!  She was very nice and shared her candy with her Dada.

Ready for trick-or-treating with my pal, Autstin

Check out my haul