The single biggest event for Emma (and us) this month was her surgery, and we're happy to report that she has been healthy and infection-free since then! She had a follow-up ultrasound, and her urologist was very pleased with how everything looks post-surgery. We're so grateful to God, and praying that He keeps her healthy!
In other news, the Monday after her surgery, Dan's school year started. What in the world? For the first time this year, they are following a modified year-round schedule, so summer break was really short. He missed having those extra weeks to prepare for the year, but he'll have a brand-new fall break and an extra week off at Christmastime, so hopefully it'll make up for school starting a month before everyone else.
I'm getting into the groove of working three days a week, and I think it allows me enough time in the office to be productive and helpful to my department. But I treasure the other days I have off to be with Emma! We've settled into a fairly regular routine on the days I work and the days I don't. Since Dan takes her to Sue's house on the days I'm working, we set everything out the night before for him to grab on his way out the door in the morning. On the easy mornings, Emma sleeps until he belts her into her car seat, and then falls asleep again as soon as the car starts rolling. Other times, she'll wake up when he's trying to get ready for work and need food or a diaper change. Occasionally, he'll wake me up to help him so he won't be late for work, but that's hardly ever happened, and I normally get to sleep later. He handles everything so well and is amazing with Emma, and I appreciate him more every day!
On the days when I'm at home, Emma will wake up around 7:00 and I'll feed her, change her, and then we'll sleep off and on for another two hours or so. We usually have a lunch date with Dan or a friend, so that gets us up and out the door, and we might run an errand afterwards or I'll take her for a run/walk in the jogging stroller in the afternoon.
It seems like Emma is developing a new skill every week now! Some facts about her at four months old:
- Her favorite new trick is blowing spit bubbles. :) Whenever she has nothing better going on, you'll see her get this intense, somewhat cross-eyed look on her face, and then the bubbles start showing up. All that intentional drool coming out of her mouth means we go through bibs like crazy!
- She's getting really good at grabbing and playing with toys now ("playing" = putting them in her mouth)
- She is working sooo hard at sitting up on her own! She's not quite there yet, but she loves to sit up with assistance and see the world around her. She can get herself from a reclining position all the way to sitting up straight before she topples over. That Buddha belly is hiding some strong ab muscles!
- We've gotten a couple of chuckles out of her in the past couple of weeks - no real laughs yet, but it won't be long!
- We've noticed recently that she startles more at loud noises or when we move into her eyesight suddenly.
- She's just beginning to mimic us more intentionally, like moving her mouth around as if she's forming words or smiling every time we smile
- She'll anticipate our movements now when we repeat an action over and over, like wiggling our fingers over her face before tickling her belly
- She still sleeps in her car seat at night and loves to hang out in it during the day, mainly because we keep it in a snap-and-go stroller and wheel her around the house so she can be a part of the action when we're not able to hold her. It's common to find the stroller sitting in the kitchen when I'm fixing dinner or outside the bathroom door when I've gotta go. Hey, maybe she'll be potty trained early since I'm demonstrating so often. Heh. :)
- Sleep is similar to last month - she sleeps 4-5 hours at first, wakes up to eat, then sleeps for another 3-4 hours. I still wake up with her in the middle of the night, and Dan takes care of her in the early morning. We're working on moving her bedtime earlier, but we have mixed emotions about it. The past couple of nights, she's gone to sleep at 8:00, and it's given us a precious hour to relax and just be together before we go to bed. (Yes, we go to bed at 9:00. We don't even pretend to be cool.) But since we both get home from work after 6:00, we feel robbed of quality time with her since we still have to fix/eat dinner and get ready for the following day.
- Her bedtime routine is pretty much my favorite time of day. She sits in her chair with us at the dinner table while we eat, then we clean up the dishes and get her bath ready. We normally bathe her every evening, then we get her diapered and dressed and I feed her while Dan reads a chapter from the "Jesus Storybook Bible" to her. I cannot recommend this children's Bible enough - we love the wording, the pictures, and the way every story points to Christ. She usually falls asleep within minutes after her story, but it's such a sweet time for the three of us.
She is loving the toys now that she can grasp them and put them into her mouth!
She's also still enjoying the play mat with music and moving toys
We just recently tried the Bumbo seat, and she did great sitting up in it!
This is her "high chair" and pretty much how she entertains herself while we're eating. Kicking the table, playing with her hands, and blowing bubbles. It doesn't take much!
The "spit bubble" face
She and her best friend Ellie are still super adorable together
Emma doesn't quite have Ellie's hair, but there has been some growth! I mean, look at those flowing locks! At this rate, I'll be able to put it in pigtails when she's 12.
Goofing around during bath time :)
We visited our friends, Dave and Cynthia and their daughters Olivia and Kailey, to celebrate Kailey's 2nd birthday
Kailey loved "Baby Emma"!
Emma and I met my department from work for lunch one day. My boss cannot possibly ask me to work more days now that he's seen how adorable she is.
The NHL season calendar was released, and Emma celebrated by dressing in her NY Islanders gear
Her excitement doesn't quite match Dan's, but they are looking forward to watching hockey together soon.
One of the highlights of me having days off is that Emma and I can pick up Dan for lunch once a week. She usually sits in the middle of the table playing with one of us while the other person is eating. We still tag-team a lot during meals.
Me and my pretty girl!
It's a lot of work to get her to smile for the camera since she usually freezes when she sees it. But we did catch her classic raised eyebrow. She's been able to do that since birth, accomplishing in mere moments the "don't mess with the principal" look that Dan has been perfecting for years now.
This little four month old is growing up so fast! We are loving life with her more and more with each month!