A couple of weeks this month were pretty tough for our family. My Uncle David passed away unexpectedly, and we flew to Texas to attend his memorial service. It was wonderful to see so many of our relatives there, although the circumstances were sad. We will miss him terribly, yet we are joyful to know that he trusted in Jesus for his salvation and is rejoicing in heaven! After that exhausting weekend of travel, we were looking forward to relaxing the following weekend. Unfortunately, Emma caught Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease and was miserable the next weekend with a fever and painful sores in her mouth. I had never heard of HF&M before she caught it - it's not serious, but it's a highly contagious virus that there is no medical treatment for, kind of like the common cold. We gave her Infant Tylenol for her fever and the pain, and then quarantined ourselves from other kids and waited for it to run its course. She felt pretty bad for two days then seemed to improve steadily. We got up with her at night when she woke up crying to give her Tylenol and soothe her back to sleep - then had to go back to sleep training boot camp to help her adjust to sleeping through the night again. All in all, it was a tiring and emotional two weeks for all of us.
Of course we've had good times this month, too. We loved getting to spend some unexpected time with my family in Texas! Since Emma was the only small baby at the funeral, she made quite a hit and was spoiled with lots of attention. Right after she got over HF&M, we attended Emma's best friend, Ellie's, first birthday party. They are only 5 weeks apart in age, so Ellie gives us a good preview of what's around the corner for Emma. Sue and her daughters Jackie and Stacy (Ellie's mom) took the girls to the zoo for the first time this month. And Dan, Emma, and I attended the Christian Youth Theater's production of "Shrek, The Musical" which some of Dan's students performed in. It was really well-done!
Emma has gotten more spunky in the past couple of months! Here are a few facts about her at 11 months old:
- She has FIVE teeth now! Two on top and three on the bottom, and she has learned how to use them. She tries to take a bite out of almost everything she can get her hands on. We've had to stop giving her things to play with in her car seat that are even remotely edible.
- It feels sort of like having a puppy, since she follows us from room to room, stopping to eat small objects off the floor along the way. She also carries toys in her mouth while she crawls, which is really funny.
- She is suddenly averse to having her diaper changed, which makes the event more exciting than we'd like it to be. It starts out playful, but almost always ends up with sweat (us) and tears (her) when we resort to pinning her down so we can change her. I'm pretty sure this is a prime example of us not setting appropriate boundaries, but it just started a couple of weeks ago, so we haven't come up with a game plan yet.
- Her diapers have been leaking recently. It could be that she's outgrown them. It's more likely that they are always askew and can't offer full protection since we have exactly six seconds to change her one-handed while she angrily performs a scissors hold on our forearm.
- She's close to shaking off her second nap of the day. She'll still take a long (1.5 - 2 hour) nap in the late morning, and then she'll often catch an afternoon cat nap in the car while we're running errands. But if we try to put her down for an afternoon nap in her crib, it usually doesn't happen.
- She is having a blast with crawling! Her very favorite thing is exploring the entire house. She never, ever crawls into her own room, though, because that's where naps and diaper changes happen. She doesn't want to give us any ideas.
- Some of the fun things she's discovered are the pots and pans in the kitchen, the legs of the kitchen table and chairs, and our bookshelves, which clearly need to be emptied on a regular basis. She hasn't gotten into too much danger yet, although we occasionally have to pull an appliance cord out of her mouth and watch her carefully when we let her play on the bed since she has no appreciation for the morale of the "Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed" story. Dan's barely caught her a couple of times by one foot after she dove headfirst off the side!
- Sleep has been hit-or-miss since she got sick. She usually still sleeps through the night, but we have had rough nights/early mornings. That's when our video monitor is priceless, because I can see what she's doing and reassure myself that she's okay if we decide to wait it out and let her get back to sleep on her own.
- When she was sick and wanted us to get her out of bed in the middle of the night, she'd scream at the top of her lungs. She hasn't been a screamer, well, ever. So the first night we went racing into her room, ready to slay a ferocious beast. That worked well for her, and she expected her screams to result in prompt service every night going forward. But we put our foot (feet) down on that behavior quickly and it hasn't become the norm so far.
- She understands and responds appropriately to several phrases: "Hi" and "Bye Bye" (she'll wave and sometimes say "bah bah"), "Outside" (points to the door), "Yay!" and "Pat-a-Cake" (claps her hands), "Brush" (we use this for both her toothbrush and her hair brush, so she sometimes brushes her hair with her toothbrush), "More" (it looks like clapping instead of the sign for "more," but we get it), "You do it!" (when we want her to hold her own bottle/spoon/book), "Up?" (she flaps her arms like a bird when she wants us to pick her up)
- She loves books and photographs. She could look at the photos around our house all day long.
- Since she and Dan get home earlier from work than I do, they've started taking walks around the neighborhood. They've met more neighbors (and their dogs) in the past few weeks than Dan and I have in the last 8 years we've been living here!
Here are some pictures from this month.
My Uncle David, whose life we celebrated at his memorial service
The Campbell Family - my dad's side of the family.
Emma and my mom, looking pretty. I see a lot of my mom's features in Emma.
She is checking out Uncle Paul's teeth. She went through a phase where she wanted to put her hands in peoples' mouths and touch their teeth. Now she has her own teeth to play with.
It was great to spend time with my family that weekend!
One of the main symptoms of Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease is that babies develop blisters around their mouth, hands, and feet. You can see the faint red marks from the blister under her mouth and on her nostril.
My parents had a couple of mirrors sitting on the floor at their house, and Emma LOVED playing in front of them! So when we got home, Dan took a full-length mirror and hung it at her level in our dining room. Such a fun and inexpensive source of entertainment!
She loves pointing out everyone on the canvas portrait my parents bought us for Christmas (and the other pictures around the house).
We went to Anaheim one afternoon and stopped by Hockey Giant, which is like Dan's candy shop. Emma got a kick out of all the hockey gear, too.
Emma and I shopped at Downtown Disney while Dan went to a competition to support his students at the Anaheim Convention Center.
She isn't pulling up or walking yet, but she can stand steadily when she's propped!
She doesn't quite get the concept of Ellie's walker, though.
Emma helped test out Ellie's new toys at her birthday party. That's what friends are for!
We all jumped around Ellie's birthday bounce house
Emma picks Ellie as her very best friend. Heh!
The girls got to visit the San Diego Zoo for the first time
Back at home, there were more adventures to be had under the kitchen table
"How do you feel?" Oscar asks. "Hungry," replies Emma.
She will eat books, paper, leaves, and unidentified objects on the floor, but she is still a solid food Nazi most of the time.
The only way to see all five of those pearly whites is to tickle her. It's a tough job, but Dan was up for the challenge!
Dan and Emma are enjoying the extra hour of daylight so they can make friends around the neighborhood after work
This little 11 month old brings so much fun and joy to our lives!