So as usual, this is what our Little Toddles has been up to!
- She’s perfecting her fake-cackle laugh haha… it’s so funny! Jeff does this obviously fake witchy laugh and Jia tries to mimic him. It’s a very deliberate fake-laugh, that goes sort of like “eh-heheh-eh”
- She’s learning how to speak use her tongue, by saying things like “dibba-dibba-dibba”
- Pushes herself along in her princess car, pushing off with her feet while seated
- Getting better eating with a spoon! Gran helped her learn to do this while I was in Philly. She is now scooping food onto her spoon (some of the time) and moving it toward her mouth at the correct angle!
- knows the color yellow and can pick out the yellow block out of pink, purple, and green ones
- Is very eager to turn lights on and off with the wall switch, she’s really good at it too. When we walk past a light switch, she points it out (“shaaaast?!”) so she can turn it the other way. When she switches the light on, she points at the light above to show me that she knows they’re connected. She’s very proud of herself for being able to turn the light switches. We’re pretty proud of her too
- Can stack 2 blocks together
- Is getting very defiant when she’s holding something in her hand and we remove it – she gets visibly pissed off if you take it from her (specifically the iPhone)
- Definitely getting to that stage where she can’t stand to sit still
- Getting the hang of walking one-handed, practice practice practice!
- When I yell at the dogs for doing something they shouldn’t be doing, Jia says “bad boy!” and smiles at me, because she knows this is the response they’ll get from me, haha. This comes after a string of events of Kona pooping in the house because he refuses to poop out in the snow, or eating my kleenexes from the trash can.
- This isn’t new, but since it’s cold, dry, and wintry, we (like lots of babies) have frequent cases of the boogers and I thought I’d share. I got a Nose Frida Snot Sucker as a registry gift way back when and bought some Boogie Mist saline spray for when the time arose. Time has arisen. But the funny and cute thing, is that Jia really likes the saline spray and likes it when I suck those boogers out! I have no clue why, but she lowers and positions her nose on to the saline spray nozzle and to the Snot Sucker tube for me to use on her. Same goes with Q-tips, she knows I’m going to clean her ears, so she stays really still and angles her ears to me. Girl likes hygiene, can’t argue.
- While I was gone in Philly: Jia did really great and so did Gran (Jeff’s mom). Of course Jeff was home while I was gone, but he had to go to work obviously, so Jeff’s mom stayed at our house and watched Jia from Tuesday evening (I left Wednesday afternoon) until Saturday afternoon. Jia went down for naps and bedtime without any crying and zonked out! She learned a lot with Gran (the spoon, yellow blocks) in the short span they were isolated together and I rested easy knowing she was happy. The evening before I came home she had a tough time after Gran showed her some photos of Jia and me together, but she was back to her perky self when dinner time came around.
My First Time Away from Jia/The Trip to Philly:
My trip to Philly (for a consult job with ConvaTec) went smoothish. I left on Wednesday afternoon after a few long hugs with Jia while my eyes welled up with tears. I was on the road and was soon distracted by mellow indie music playing in the car and my roll of toilet paper to blow my nose, for my three-hour drive. I was all drugged up on Mucinex and Sinex spray (after I made an “oops” and had been taking Sudafed – the real stuff, pseudo-ephedrine – for four days… it can affect your milk supply, so I stopped immediately) and was chugging as much water as I could until my bladder couldn’t take it.
I got to Philly at 4 PM on the dot and checked into my hotel, Embassy Suites at Center City. I Yelped an Indian restaurant (why I didn’t think to get a Philly cheesesteak my first night, I don’t know) and took a 10 minute stroll to the restaurant for an overpriced and underwhelming takeout meal to consume in the comforts of my own hotel room (complete with Seinfeld and my roll of toilet paper). I took a quick shower, put on my PJ’s, brushed up on my FlexiSeal Signal literature, then hit the sack early. I was feeling miserable. My sinuses were tight, I was coughing and congested, and my voice was getting more and more hoarse.
I woke up at 4:40 am needing to blow my nose. It was dreadfully dry in the hotel, so blowing my nose was a necessary but bloody evil. Went back to bed, woke up at 6 AM (had to be at the Medical School at 7:30 AM) feeling pretty crappy and really sinusy. Had an extremely rushed breakfast (I had to cram in waking up, washing up, pumping, getting dressed, and get pump supplies packed up all in 30 minutes) and got to the Med center before anyone else got there… and then struggled the whole morning and afternoon with a slowly worsening voice.
By the end of the day, I had to whisper my dinner order to the guy behind the counter at Steve Prince’s of Steak for my Philly cheesesteak, after a full day of force-speaking my way through talks of fecal incontinence. The next day was only worse (sick-wise). I had to rush to make an impromptu powerpoint presentation for the nursing staff to read, since my voice was 95% gone. My purpose was specifically to educate and reinforce practice with this device and I had to croak my way through a few short summary points after they clicked through a slideshow on my laptop (thanks to Jeff for encouraging me to bring it!).
My experience pumping in Philly was awkward. Even though my rep was trying to coordinate a pumping room for me with the help of the Temple University nurse administrators, I was unable to get a real private room. I ended up using a med student study room in the hallway, which had no room lock and had windows. I had to ask the nurse who was in charge of the N-95 mask fittings to guard my door twice that day. Day 2 all of those rooms were filled with med students preparing for their qualifying exams, so I had to pump in a simulation lab equipment room. Not the worst, it was actually a room that locked, which was nice. They also secretly allowed me to put my milk in their fridge.
The sad thing, is that the Temple University Medical Building was huge but they had NO LACTATION room. The only proper place for me to go was to the Lactation Room in the actual hospital across the street. Med students are young in their 20s-30s, so I find it really sad that there wasn’t a single lactation room in the building. I mean, where do they expect all the students – let alone the other employees – to pump? And to top it off, the building management was grossed out by my need to pump. They were appalled at the nursing administrators’ request to find a place for me, stating that breastmilk was a biohazardous fluid?! Are you kidding me? The good thing, was the positive response I got from the nurse admin team, when finding out that Jia’d just turned 1 year old recently. They applauded me on breastfeeding this long and said it was “really good!” So that was nice and hopefully that means, building management aside, that the perception of breastfeeding might be supportive in Philly.
Moving on… Jia and I FaceTimed twice while I was gone – the first time was when I first checked into my hotel room. She was OK while she thought I was a recorded video on Gran’s phone, but then she realized I was live somewhere else. She got so upset.
The second time was during a lull on Thursday after a really happy day with Gran. She was actually happy to see me and stayed happy throughout our video chat. Whew.
All in all, it was an OK trip. I missed Jia so much (I missed Jeff and the doggies too, but I’ve been apart from them before) but I made it through without crying. I didn’t cry myself to sleep like I thought I would. I’m so so glad to be home. That three-hour drive back was excruciating! I couldn’t wait to be home just a few short feet away from Jia’s room. She woke up crying at some point at night. I didn’t wait the designated 5 minutes before going in. I was so eager to see her, even at whatever-o’clock in the morning. I happily popped out of bed and shushed my little sweetie. She looked up and did a double-take, and we both reached for each other. I hugged her and hugged her and rocked her, nuzzled her. She went back to sleep right away and in the morning I saw my happy smiling little girl. It was one of the most comforting feelings, walking right over there to her room and seeing her happy.
I really am not looking forward to our next time apart (so far, this will only be our third wedding anniversary overnight trip (local) away from Jia on 3/30 and then 2 nights away at the end of May for a Miami wedding). At least I know that while we’re gone, she’ll be able to handle it. At least the overnight. I have just under 3 months until the Miami trip, so it feels far away right now. We’ll see how quick that one sneaks up on us!
Fun Stuff – Pics & Video! (Some were taken with my iPhone, so they’re not the best quality!)