Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Count your Blessings

Yesterday my co-worker's daughter drowned in their family pool. She was 3 years old. Words cannot express the sorrow I feel for this family. My stomach turned inside out when I heard the news. I don't even know this co-worker very well. He's senior mgmt. I'm a worker bee. I don't know how you can recover from this kind of loss.
The head of our international trading desk told me as we were heading out to go home. I think he put it best when he said, that all of "this" (pointing to our trading floor) really means nothing. Nothing at all.
As I put the girls to bed tonight, I said an extra prayer for each of them. I have to remember to count my blessings and cherish every moment.

From Naomi 36 months, Mikaela 5 mths

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Business as Usual

Yup, I got an email from the global head....tomorrow is business as usual. Despite warnings from both Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Christie to stay indoors tomorrow, I'll be trekking my way into manhattan at 5:30 am. In all reality, Hurricane Irene wasn't as bad as it could be, and for that I'm grateful. We didn't have any damage to our property, no flooding, and no loss of power. There are a lot out there who suffered a far less fortunate fate, so I'm counting my blessings and trying not to complain too much about having to go back to work. Austin has the day off though, so at least I'll be able to check in on the girls. Since I was home Thursday and Friday with Naomi being sick, going to work after a few days is always tough. I do have to marvel in the fact that for an area that hardly ever sees Hurricanes or Earthquakes, we've experienced both in less than a week!

On the sick front, today was the first day Naomi hasn't had a fever in almost a week. She's still so exhausted though. Today at lunch, she decided she was too tired, and went upstairs and put herself down for a nap. This from a girl who would rather stay up all day, and all night, fights naps all the time....After almost a 3 hr nap, I expected her to be up all night today, but at dinner, she was complaining about being tired, so we got her ready for bed as usual. Hopefully all this extra sleep will help her nip whatever sickness she has. She's been breaking out in random rashes on her hands and feet, but the doctor said it's not hand, foot and mouth disease. It's not strep either. They said that breaking out in a rash might just be her way of fighting viruses. Poor girl. We've been giving her claritin on top of tylenol to help with the itchiness from her rash. Thankfully, Mikaela hasn't caught whatever bug Naomi has. knock on wood. We have a busy couple of weeks coming up for travel, so we need everyone healthy! Next week we go on a family retreat for church. The following week we go to Clearwater, FL with our Gene and Jaime, and their daughter, Alli, aka naomi's best friend. The day we get back we have friends staying with us for a week, visiting from Seattle. Then we have one week at home, then we're off to Cabo for a week! Talk about a back end loaded travel schedule. Guess we didn't plan this year that well. Oh well. Here's to good health and good weather with no more storms.


On Saturday, I saw a tooth had sprouted at the bottom of Mikaela's mouth. Upon closer inspection she has a second one coming in right next to the first. Sob. my baby is getting bigger.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Ballet Slippers

On what turned out to be an uneventful storm watching day, we headed out in the morning to Dancewear Etc in town to pick up leotards, ballet slippers and tap shoes for Naomi's upcoming dance lessons which start in Sept. Unfortunately, Naomi is under the weather, so she wasn't as excited as I think she normally would have been. We picked up two leotards and a pair of dance tights. They didn't have tap shoes in Naomi's size, so we had to special order them, but we did pick up her ballet slippers. Her first pair of legit dance shoes. I can't get over how cute they are.

Photo: Sweiphotography.com

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Monday, August 22, 2011

First words.

Mikaela has been babbling for a few months now, but only recently has she been more “conversational”. Sometimes I think she’s really saying something, except no one can understand her. Anyway, naturally, her first word and the word she repeats over and over again, is “Da Da.” Just like her big sister, I’ve been trying to get her to say “mama” to which she responds “DA DA!!!”

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Day 2

Mikaela started day 2 with a hoarse voice. Apparently she cried so much on Monday that her poor little voice was strained. Austin noticed it in the morning when she woke up, and when I picked her up in the afternoon, I could hear how raspy it really was. It made me really sad to think of her crying so inconsolably. Supposedly day 2 was better. She took two naps instead of just one, she took both bottles and ate all her solids. On day 1, she had 1 bottle, some banana and refused everything else. She also only took one 45 min nap. The entire day! On day 2, she stopped crying and could be consoled by the teachers in nursery…this was a big improvement. She played a little on her own, and she was happy when she went in to visit Naomi’s class. Her teachers are all so great though, and everyone comments on how cute and cuddly she is. Apparently they fight over who gets to hold her next. Austin’s started calling her his little princess who is never put down. It’s pretty much true. I’m relieved they think she did so much better after just one dady. Hopefully it’ll just keep getting easier.

Happy birthday

Happy Birthday Austin!!!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

3 Years Old

When you’re below the age of 5, heck, when you’re below the age of 21, gaining an extra year on your birthday is a big deal. However, in terms of importance and excitement, I think turning 3 may trump all. It’s the first birthday you truly comprehend. It’s the first time you’ll understand that you’re having a birthday party, and that you get to have a say in what happens on that day. You go from being a toddler to a little kid. You’re no longer considered a baby. You realize your opinion truly does count and there are better ways to get what you want than to fall on the ground crying. At 3, you become a real person. Lol.
At 3, Naomi is more vocal than any 3 year old I’ve ever met. She talks non stop, all day long. She’s incredibly opinionated, incredibly bossy, and yet incredibly sweet, smart, and caring. She still gets frustrated when she doesn’t get what she want, and she still throws tantrums when she can’t explain what’s bothering her. But she’s getting better. She’s much better at telling us what she needs, and even better at telling us what she wants. Each day I see her maturing more and more. As she realizes she’s getting older and more capable, her desire to help and be involved is increasing. She wants to be part of any conversation that is going on around her…be careful about what you say, her little ears pick up everything, and her big mouth tends to repeat them at the most inopportune times. She wants to help around the house, and with her baby sister in every way possible. At least 20 times a day she’s saying, “can I help” or “Can I do it?” Great in most cases, sometimes a little frustrating when I’m trying to get something done fast (like shove baby food in MIkaela’s mouth because she’s screaming at the top of her lungs since she’s the world’s fastest eater and needs non stop, rhythmic spoonfuls of food to reach her mouth every 20 seconds).
She loves cooking, both real and pretend. She loves to help her Ama in the garden (we all know I have a black thumb and don’t go out there).
She loves to sing and dance, nothing new here, except that she is getting really good! She can hear a song at school once, and come home and sing the entire song to us. She loves singing, and basically sings all day. She still loves dancing, and continues to put on regular “dance shows” for us at home. She’s also quite the ham and loves to start each performance with a “Ladies and Gentleman, welcome to the singing, dancing, awesome dancing girl show!!” Then she makes you clap, then she makes you say, “yay go Naomi”. Yea she’s incredibly humble too…not.
She’s still shy. But she’s getting better. She warms up to people a lot faster, and she doesn’t get mean and yell “NO” at strangers anymore when they say “hi”.
She still loves to wear dresses, but just recently, has started wearing shorts, skirts and pants again. Yes it involved some tears and meltdowns, but she’s starting to realize that not every occasion is dress appropriate…(like trying to slide down a hot metal slide).
She’s 99.9% potty trained. The only time she wears a diaper is at night, and even then, she’ll wake up 50% of the time with a dry diaper.
She still loves to draw, and is pretty darn good for her age. She must get this from Austin. She likes to draw her family members, animals and most recently maps. Then she plays navigator on our drive home from daycare, telling me which way to go.
Three truly is a big deal. No day in the life of a 3 year old is boring, no day is the same. Every day she’s growing, learning, maturing, changing. I can’t keep up. The other day, I told my boss I couldn’t believe I was the mom of a 3 year old. He responded, “you look it”. =)

Monday, August 15, 2011

First Day of School

We've been busy busy. I'm finding it harder and harder to keep up with the blogging! We travelled to Connecticut this weekend to celebrate the girls' great grand parent's (Austin's grandparents) 65th wedding anniversary. (more on that hopefully in a separate post). My parents left for Shanghai yesterday morning, so it was a bit sad to come home last night. With my parents gone, that means Mikaela officially started daycare today. Austin did a great job of getting both girls out the door, Naomi was an incredible help, playing with Mikaela, helping to feed her a bottle...
Once they got to school though, Mikaela knew something was up and got a bit nervous. By the time Austin and Naomi left her class, she was crying her poor eyes out. We were hoping since she's only 7 months that she wouldn't really go through much separation anxiety, unlike when Naomi went at 14 months. Unfortunately, she's a smart one, and she already knows she's not with family. It's only 9:30am right now, and I'm literally sitting on my hands to hold myself back from calling the center to check in on her already. I'm making myself wait til 10am. Here's a pic from this morning. Her teacher was already holding her in this shot. doesn't she look nervous?

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Sleep Rituals....I mean, quirks

They say it's important to set a sort of sleep routine/ritual at a young age to get your babies to learn when it's time to go to sleep. We have a loose routine for both girls, which has definitely helped us get both girls ready for bed at a somewhat decent hour every night (with some obvious hiccups along the way), but still allowing us flexibility to change things up on nights when we stay out late, travel etc.
Along the way, the girls have developed their own quirks which help them to fall asleep. I can't help but laugh each night as we finally get both girls into bed. Naomi has two night lights, a sound machine, a nightstand and her main bedroom light which she has to turn on/off all on her own. Then she jumps into bed, where she gets one story, a bunch of silly songs (courtesty of Dora) and then her bedtime lullabye *Misty". Then Austin or I has to sit on her couch for 5 mins while she tries to sleep, then after 5 mins, we give her another 2 mins before finally leaving for the night, making sure to prop her door open just a tiny bit so she can see the railing outside her door.
Mikaela, we've recently discovered, will cry unless you are touching her cheek. Once I put her down, even if she's fast asleep, she wakes up immediately. As soon as I touch her cheek with my palm, she falls back asleep, no joke, instantaneously. But if I try to move my hand away too soon, she wakes up. It's usually no more than 3-5 mins, and it's nice to be able to watch her sleep because she's so peaceful and has the cutest face. But It seriously is the funniest thing to be standing there, leaning over her crib with one hand on her cheek. But hey, whatever works right?

Saturday, August 6, 2011

She scoots!!

Mikaela has been reaching for objects for several weeks now. Today she successfully managed to grab her object of desire (a box to one of Naomi's toys) and is now able to scoot a pretty good distance when she's motivated. As soon as she made it to the box, she flipped it on top of her head, then Naomi came over, grabbed the box and put it up high on a chair where Mikaela couldn't reach it. Ahh Sibling love.