Tuesday, January 30, 2007

High stepping

Vanessa has been lifting her feet as if walking lately. (She eventually got the flowers and knocked over the vase.)

Monday, January 29, 2007

Tricks and treats

Vanessa has been treating us with all kinds of tricks lately.
She'll giggle and coo if we tickle her.
She complains much less about being on her tummy.
She sits up by herself to play!
Today, we went over to her friend Revie's house. It was really cool to see the two of them interacting: petting each other's faces, eating each other's fingers, and talking to each other. I like that Vanessa has a little friend!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Letting her cry?

Well, I've finally decided to do something about Vanessa's midnight bedtime. I am usually the sort of mom who responds immediately to Vanessa's cries or signs of discomfort so that she really hardly ever cries. There are times when she's grouchy and needs to be held or bounced to keep her from crying, but I hardly ever hear her cry and I always feel like I'm doing something about it when she does cry.

I've been doing a bit of research and there are compelling studies that show that babies who are put down to bed while awake learn to put themselves to sleep. The only trouble is, being put to bed awake usually means crying, at least in Vanessa's case. So, over the past two days, when she is really tired and needs a nap, instead of feeding her and then putting her down for a nap, I put her down by herself and let her cry for 10 to 15 minutes before she falls asleep. Then I feed her when she wakes up. The couple of times that Vanessa cried for longer than 15 minutes, I picked her up, checked to see if she needed burping, held her for a few minutes, and set her back down.

Last night, we finally cut the apron strings and had Vanessa sleep in a different room from us. I put her down when she was tired at about 10 PM, crossed my fingers, and after 10 minutes of crying, Vanessa slept through the night for the first time and woke up at 5AM.

There are several reasons why I think this is good for Vanessa. First of all, if I put her in bed to sleep when she's tired at 10, she won't be up until midnight and be so tired and grouchy that she can't get to sleep. (I think I've actually been keeping her awake past her bedtime by trying to comfort her for two hours.) Second of all, if Vanessa can learn to go to sleep on her own, she'll have an easier time going to sleep as a toddler. Third, she'll have an easier time adjusting to a daily schedule, getting her sleeping and eating rhythms to follow a predictable pattern, and should eventually take her naps without much fussing at all. As an added bonus, mommy and daddy will get a good night's sleep too.

In the meantime, 10 minutes is still a long time to hear a baby cry! I hope she learns to nap without crying soon. I think in any case, she'll get used to putting herself to sleep before I'll get used to her cries. We'll try this for a week or so and see what happens. But no matter what, we're definitely going to keep the crib in the other room!

Monday, January 22, 2007

First Snow!

Vanessa saw her very first snow yesterday. We don't think she was too happy about it, actually, but I bet she'll like it when she's older.

Vanessa says, "It's cold, dark, and wet out here. Can we go back inside now?"

Vanessa and mommy playing.

Vanessa was reunited with Revie last week. The two girls hadn't seen each other for about a month due to the holidays and a variety of colds between them.

Revie likes the piano too.

Vanessa likes the piano so much she wants to eat it!

Vanessa's playing with her very first Starwars toy. It's a stuffed light saber!

Vanessa's also discovered the keyboard. I thought I might let her type a little message too all of you out there in bloggerland.

bbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbn,.uh,hhhhhhhhhh ,mhbnbn,,,,,,,tvc

Thursday, January 11, 2007

A music lover for sure

It has come to our attention that Vanessa really, really likes music. If she's cranky, it calms her down, if she's sleepy, it helps her sleep. But what's really tipped us off is the way she plays with all her musical toys.

Vanessa really likes the musical doggy she got from her Great Grandma and Great Grandpa Webb. She likes to hold its ears and bite its nose, so we know she likes it.
Nana came over to see all the new things her granddaughter was doing. Oh, plus it was my birthday.
Vanessa wears her VT outfit in support of the VT men's basketball team. Go Hokies!
I love this picture. Look at how Vanessa puts her hand on top of daddy's to learn how he plays.
Vanessa fell asleep during her piano lesson (about 2 minutes after the previous picture was taken).I am so impressed with the way Vanessa plays with her baby piano. Not only does she like to play the keys and turn the plastic music pages, but she also uses the piano as a standing support. If she's sitting (as she so often does) on my foot for a stool, she can pull herself to a standing position and support herself there.
In this picture, I am spotting Vanessa, but not supporting her. She's using the dancing yellow sun on the piano for support. When she's not using him for a dancing partner, she tries her best to eat him.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Growing so fast!

I can't believe how fast Vanessa is growing. I feel like I've seen her grow more in this past week than any other week we've had her. In the past week she's learned how to grab objects, bounce in her bouncer, lay on her tummy (and be happy about it), roll over, be ticklish on her tummy and she had her first attempt at solid food on Thursday (rice cereal, yummy). I also feel like she really pays attention to people talking to her now, especially when its storytime. At this rate she could say dada next week! I guess it would be ok if she said mama first. :)

Rolling over!

Vanessa spent a few minutes on her tummy yesterday without fussing. Wow! And then, to our surprise, James and I watched Vanessa roll over from her tummy to her back for the first time. We put her back on her tummy, and she did it again!

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

What a big girl!

At Vanessa's appointment today, she was 25 inches long, and weighed 15 pounds, 15 ounces. She's big for her age, coming in at 75% percentile in height, and 95% in weight. We also think she's getting pretty smart -- she's started to bat at and grab all her new Christmas toys!

Just before New Year's, we were really excited to get a visit from my Aunt Teri and Uncle Bob, and cousins Brett and Danielle. I've hardly had a chance to get to know Brett and Danielle before. It turns out that they're much fun and quite talented at all kinds of things (Brett especially at math, and Danielle especially at singing and acting).

Vanessa stayed up nearly until midnight on New Year's. We went to a casino night at coworker Scott's place. Vanessa had lots of admirers, and was held by many. She was good luck at the craps table -- James came in second place in the evening's winnings. Hopefully she didn't enjoy all the gambling too much.

We're also excited to have seen Vanessa's uncles Zak and Terry, Aunt Heather, and Grandma Satterlee yesterday. Zak and my mom visited my brother Jake and his family in Texas over the holidays, and I loved hearing all the stories about my nieces Katelyn, Jadyn, and Bryn.

Vanessa gets to meet her second cousins and her Great Aunt Teri.

Uncle Bob came straight from work, so he's still in his pilot's uniform as he gives Vanessa a big hug.
Vanessa looks cozy with the lovely and stylish Danielle.
Vanessa and Daddy just chillin'
Vanessa loves exercising on mommy's tummy. (Only four months ago, that preposition used to be 'in.')
Vanessa can support herself to sit up with the help of her Boppy pillow.
Daddy reads Vanessa a story. "Where is my cat?"
Grandma helps Vanessa play a tune. Vanessa hasn't had lessons yet, so her fingering is a little off.