Sunday, June 6, 2010

18 months plus one day! The fullest post I can muster...

It seems we are in a very exciting developmental stage. New words, new abilities seem to be erupting from C daily. While here in Portland she's become fascinated with spices... she stacked several different types of spice containers five high the other night when I wasn't looking. My goodness! The dexterity! Daddy reports that she did something similar with canned goods not long ago, though spice containers (tall ones at that) requires a bit more fine motor ability. We can't get her to stack blocks or other stacking toys... but she'll stack! She loves to draw and on the flight here she had great fun with the beads and playdough that I brought along at Desert Mama's recommendation. She played with the beads on a string for awhile, but eventually she had fun planting the beads in the playdough, or putting them in the small film canisters in which the playdough had been housed. So curious... She continues to love books. She will often spend a great deal of time flipping through books.

She had her first ear infection ever this past month... and has continued to struggle on and off with slowly descending or ascending canines. The top ones have broken through and Kev finds how sharp they are to be terrifying. Poor dear! Her sleeping was much improved for awhile, but these developments have made for some rough nights.

That said... she has traveled beautifully. There were moments on our trip out here that were trying, but after about 20-30 on each flight minutes she'd settle in and stop trying to get off my lap. We didn't have any meltdowns on the flights and she took a nap on both flights. I was thinking the trip out would be harder than the trip back (which is a red-eye through houston tomorrow, night, but now I'm wondering...)

In any case, our girl is a wonder! I'm sure I've forgotten several important things I should share, but this is all I've got for now. After consulting with Kev when we get home I may have a supplemental post.

Before a host of pictures from the last month... a few from today. While Caroline stayed home with Aunt Katherine as the rest of us went to church they spent much of the time sniffing and dumping spices. She has cinnamon on her nose in several of these shots. Katherine also got her to drink half a cup of chamomile tea. And then to take a nap!

Hissing when the snake jumps out of the book! Way back on her 17 month birthday!

C loves to "talk" on the phone... when no one is on the other end... she now says "call?" and tries to take cell phones from people. Here, at least, she's playing with a old, dead phone! Usually such phones are TOTALLY unattractive. Now getting her to talk on the phone for real... sometimes challenging... especially now that she's figured out how to hang up our cell phones!

Here are several shots from Mother's Day. We went to the zoo after church and she had a great time playing in the play area there. This has been a favorite spot this past month. Not on this occasion, but on one other I briefly lost C in this play area. She was enamored of a slightly larger girl and took off after her while I was gathering a shoe she had lost (she seems to have mommy's feet, one bigger than the other, so one shoe frequently drops off...) Scary moment. But a mama of another Caroline (just a bit older than mine) helped me look and we found her quickly. Phew.

A crazy story from the zoo... the last time we went we met a few other mama's and kids. One of these mamas had a census bag and as Kev is working for the census I struck up a conversation with her. Well... who did we run into at the airport in Nashville a week or so later? That mama and her whole family. And where were they going? Portland, Oregon. And why? To visit a sister! We were on both flights together. They were super helpful on the first flight. I prayed for friendly traveling companions. This was a real treat! Unfortunately they're coming home a day after us.

Caroline LOVES to be outside. She's taken to asking for shoes or a hat and as soon as she gets either on she said "SIDE!" meaning "outside!" She is fond of sitting in the grass and picking clover or picking up small stones. She still REALLY loves dogs. Here are two from our backyard... interacting with the neighbor dog to whom she kept trying to feed grass.

Speaking of dogs... C has been in her glory here in Portland. My sister's housemate and LONG time friend, Maya, has a great big dog named Lola. This dog absolutely delights C and is quite taken with all the attention she's getting from C. I don't think we've gotten a pic of them together. Will try to do that before we leave.

Caroline is picking up words left and right. One of her favorite words at the moment is "Yellow" which sometimes sounds like "Yeyo", but sometimes sounds a heck of a lot like "yellow." She sometimes uses this word for yellow things... but she also uses it for several other things. She has discovered that it is fun to type and when she sees my computer and wants to type she says "Yellow!" repeatedly. So we make the font yellow to reinforce that yellow is a color! Here she is typing.

C continues to get together with her friend Fiona a few times a week. Now it is my turn to swap childcare with Fiona's mom, Sam. They enjoyed sitting on the piano bench coloring together on the day these pics were taken. This is actually one of C's favorite pass times at the moment, and her favorite spot for engaging in it. They were coloring happily in this rather precarious spot for at least 10 minutes. They seemed quite secure and focused. So I picked up a book that needed to be returned to my office, not too far away... and took it there.... only to here a thump and a wail. C fell off backwards and hit her head. She's fine! But I learned my lesson... I hope.

Just a purty one... isn't she gorgeous?

A sleepy Sunday afternoon with daddy. She took LOTS of naps on that particular day. Daddy was up late with her that night.

And a nap on Mamie here in Portland.

Caroline has been making friends wherever she goes on this trip. I've been pretty lousy about getting pics (wish I had some with the little boy with whom she was clearly enamored at the nashville airport!) But I did manage to get a few pics on one particular occasion. We met my friend Katy for lunch, pictured pushing her in the swing below (thanks K for driving down from Seattle to see us!), and a little girl at the restaurant became pals with C quite quickly. C initially tried to steal tip money out of her hand which didn't go over so well. They took turns playing hard to get with each other. It was quite entertaining really. This pic was taken with her new friend, Lucia, just before we left.

We have visited several playgrounds while here in Oregon and C has gotten mud-covered repeatedly! At this particular playground she really discovered the joy of sliding. She went down a low, toddler friendly slide several times and then with Aunt Katherine's help was introduced to a big slide. After going down this big slide with Aunt Katherine (whom she calls Aunt Khaki) once, she climbed back up, took one look at the toddler slide, and then kept climbing and zipped down all on her own. She REALLY wanted a piece of the tire swing! Uh... not yet! Fearless, our girl, fearless.

And now several shots from her 18 month birthday which also happened to be Mamie and Grandpa's 39th wedding anniversary. Happy anniversary, Mamie and Grandpa! We drove up to Lacey, Washington to see my Great Aunt Isabelle. This is the second great great aunt that Caroline has met. Caroline's great great aunt Betsy died just recently. We remember her with gratitude and love. Great Aunt Isabelle is 87 years old. After her husband died she moved out to Washington to be closer to her daughter. She moved into a retirement community where she met Clancy, three years her senior. They just celebrated their 7 year anniversary. So sweet.

The first several shots are all with Aunt Katherine (Khaki!) We came out here to celebrate her graduation from midwifery school. Though Aunt Khaki has attended over 70 births, Caroline is the only baby at whose birth Katherine was present that was able to attend her graduation. She slept right through it, which was merciful as it was a lovely ceremony that i likely would have missed had she been awake and as wired as she had been all day long! I think she was preparing herself for the night! In any case, we are SO proud of Aunt Khaki. She is an amazing midwife and she is going to be a blessing to so many. C warmed up to Aunt Khaki quite quickly. She stayed home from church with her today and had a great time. Katherine says it is because she looks and sounds just similar enough to mommy, and because she spent SO much time with her in her first three weeks... perhaps... or perhaps she just has a gift... she definitely has a gift with babies.

A group shot with everyone present at lunch yesterday. C was not in the mood for photo taking! And my favorite shot with Great Aunt Isabelle. A bit fuzzy, but... sweet.

And now several solo shots from her 18 month bday!


Jon said...

What a beautiful girl! And congrats to your sister on her accomplishment; glad you were able to be with her to celebrate! Blessings to all of you.

Emily (borrowing Jon's gmail account)

Rev SS said...

She is truly a beauty! Also glad you can celebrate with your sis.

Sherry Mc said...

Oh sweet Caroline, you are growing so fast. For such a little person you have had so many adventures with so many, many more to come. Bless your mommy for sharing them all with us so we too can watch you grow from afar. Love to you all. GAS

esperanza said...

Everything sounds great--thanks for the update!

And I'm so excited that you two got to meet up with Katy. Fun!

Magdalene6127 said...

Just gorgeous. Isn't it amazing to watch them grow? And I'm so glad you had a rich time in Portland. What a special occasion for you to be able to share with your family.