Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Earlier bedtime!

Vanessa has finally stared going to bed around 11. Last night, she was asleep by 10! I'm really excited to finally have her on a more reasonable schedule.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

First Thanksgiving

Vanessa had a very busy first Thanksgiving! First we went to the Eastern Shore of Virginia to my Aunt Ruth and Uncle Roger's house. I always enjoy this big get-together with my uncle's family. On Friday, we had another Thanksgiving meal with James's family, followed by some backyard football in the mud (Vanessa and I didn't play this time. Maybe in a few years.). The net result was lots of food, and lots of family.

My sister-in-law Jessica posted on her blog recently that the sudden loss of her uncle causes her to hold even more tightly to the family she has. Those sentiments affect me very much -- I am so thankful to have such a wonderful family, and each one of my family members is more important to me now than ever.
My cousin Kate shows Vanessa to her grandmother.

Fran has a brand new grandson to visit! Vanessa helps Fran warm up her baby-holding muscles.
Uncle Zak gets to hold Vanessa for the first time. Vanessa makes friends with Zak's girlfriend, Raven.
Molly was a little nervous in holding Vanessa, but she turned out to be great at it.

Jan was one of the first to hold Vanessa.
Uncle Roger was really glad that Vanessa made the trip out to the Shore.
Grandma holds Vanessa as she discovers the camera.
I think Vanessa looks a lot like her grampa in this picture.
Uncle Brian gets his hand held by Vanessa as she dozes in Joanna's arms after dinner on Friday.
OK, so Vanessa is looking away from the camera. Still, I think it's a great family picture.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Brian and Sherrie visit

We were very excited to have Brian and Sherrie visit. Since they live in Arizona, we don't get to see them very often!
Brian said that he wasn't very good at keeping small things alive. Although Vanessa's expression in this picture reflects this, she was really only unhappy about her wet diaper. She actually did enjoy sitting in Brian's lap, and even played her SO BIG game with him.

Look, Vanessa is holding Sherrie's hand. Aw...

Vanessa concentrates on standing and bouncing on the exercise ball. She's working out her core muscles, you see.

Vanessa plays SO BIG with mommy.

Vanessa is cooing in this picture as she relaxes in her crib as her bedtime nears. I'm still trying to convince Vanessa that her bedtime is 10 or 11 PM, but she still contends that 10 or 11 is playtime, and bedtime is 12 or 1 AM. She's a little night owl!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

A new little voice!

Vanessa has stared vocalizing! Her favorite things to say are "Ay! " and "Ow," followed closely by "Guh?" and "Nah!"

Vanessa has been liking her bottle less and less while I work on Saturdays, so I'm glad I'm done with teaching on Saturdays until February (or maybe not at all, we'll see).

By the way, I finally got around to changing my last name to Maxted (6 years after the wedding, but who's counting), so now we're officially a family of three Maxteds!

We're planning on taking Vanessa on her first long trip over Thanksgiving -- over 4 hours, to the Eastern Shore of Virginia. We'll see how she handles the trip. Hopefully, she'll sleep the whole way!

Monday, November 13, 2006

A week at Nana's and meeting new friends

James spent last week in L.A., so I decided to spend the week at Nana's and Grampa's place. Vanessa enjoyed the week very much, making the dog jealous with all the attention she was getting from Nana and Grampa and me! Nana took a few hours off from work on Thursday to spend even more time holding and playing with Vanessa. Daddy knew that there would be some new trick of Vanessa's that she would learn while he was gone, and sure enough, Vanessa has learned to focus on objects other than people's faces (i.e. toys). How exciting! (Grampa tried to teach Vanessa the trick of using the remote, but that didn't work quite yet, thank goodness).

This week was also notable because on voting day, I met a new stay-at-home mommy with a baby, Revie, just 3 weeks younger than Vanessa. They live in our neighborhood, and they seem to have quite a bit in common with us. For example, they like to play the Settlers game that James and I like, so we played that game last night. I'm really excited to have new friends!

Plus, I was also happy to have Heather and Terry come to visit us again. Vanessa and I are truly spoiled to have an aunt and uncle so close by. They came in Halloween costumes, since it was only a few days after Halloween, and the costumes were so fun and cleverly put together by Heather (with a little help from Terry, I understand). Heather and Terry were impressed by Vanessa's standing and SO BIG trick. When Vanessa plays SO BIG, she pulls herself into a sitting position with just a little help. It's so funny -- she'll do this trick even if she's very tired or fussy.

Vanessa noticing the mobile for the first time at Nana's house.

Aunt Heather and Uncle Terry with Vanessa. Or, you could interpret this as Superman returning the wood-elf's precious niece after saving her from certain disaster.
The boys and their babes. Jeff and Revie, James and Vanessa.

Jessica and Vanessa.

Sarah and Revie.

Vanessa shows off her standing talents.

Vanessa and Revie look at each other. They even smiled at each other!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

So big and so talented!

It's been a while since I've been able to post -- I think the Blogger web site was fixing a problem. But I've been meaning to show off some of Vanessa's new-found talents! Make sure you look at the post below this one where I posted pictures of Vanessa's first Halloween. At Vanessa's doctor's appointment on Halloween, she weighed 11 pounds, 10 ounces. She was not too happy about the four shots the nurse gave her. (A true scare for Halloween!) But she's much happier now.
Some of Vanessa's new talents:
Lifting her head!
Standing (and sitting) with help only for balance.
(You see here dark pink Baby Gap jumper set off by Great-Grammy Dee's hand-crocheted booties).
Being beautiful!

First Halloween

Vanessa in her Viking costume, ready to go to the neighborhood Halloween party outside on Saturday afternoon.
Daddy and Vanessa on the way to Vanessa's two-month appointment. Vanessa's fleece costume was appropriate for Saturday's weather, but not for the 73 degree weather on Halloween.
After changing Vanessa into more summery clothing, she got to go across the street to Daddy's work. "Aww..., she has her daddy's horns," noted coworkers.

Jennifer was the only coworker brave enough to hold Vanessa (Chardawn warned her that those who hold babies often have them soon!)

Nana's Work Part 1

Frank gives Vanessa a pat on the head.

Mary greets Vanessa while Jeff supervises.

You can tell that Vanessa is what Barry is looking at here. See the little feet?

Jeannine says Vanessa is so cute! Annie tries to keep her distance because of her cold.

Sandy finally gets to see what Nana's been talking about.

Monish gives Karen a hard time about not sharing the baby.

Visiting Nana's Work Part 2

Jan is excited to meet Vanessa!

Nana and Vanessa work at Nana's desk.

Leslie gets a peek at the little one!

Rose finally gets to meet Vanessa!

Joanne notices that Nana isn't sharing.

Marion gets to hold Vanessa!