Thursday, December 25, 2008

Annika's first Christmas morning

As per the usual, our lovely Annika woke up early smiling this beautiful day.

It is snowing in Seattle - on Christmas! What a joy and a rarity. It redeems this year of exile in SoCal... ;-) Victor was able to finally get out of Long Beach and arrived safe and sound in Seattle yesterday morning in the snow.

Here is Annika's first Christmas present from Grandma and Grandpa A.
She flashes us such big grins now! Love this baby!
Chattering at daddy. The little seahorse's belly lights up and plays soft classical music.

Here is Annika helping daddy open his present from her. It's a Cougar (WSU) quilt that Annika spent hours making last week. She loves her daddy that much!Helping daddy open his present.


Daddy taking Annika out in the snow. She wasn't so keen on the snow in her face, as she is a California girl, but she does find it interesting!She loves staring at the snow!

Annika happily chattering away at her friends, Campo, Cyrus, and Pio Pio. She is so good at entertaining herself too. We are so blessed with such a good natured little girl!
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Merry Christmas, everyone!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Smiling Baby!

FINALLY!

I've caught some video of Annika smiling and laughing. Victor and I are so blessed with such a good natured baby. Of course, Victor gets all the karmic credit for that as he says he was a much more respectful child towards his parents then I was...ahem. Moving along.

For the record - we don't sleep with Annika in our bed as a rule. Too scared about squishing or suffocating. But this morning we were cuddling and she fell asleep. I caught this video as she was waking up. She is like this every time she wakes up. It makes those 3 AM wake up calls so much easier to respond to when I know such a happy little baby will greet me in her crib with such enthusiasm and joy. Also, she is pretty much sleeping through the night now. Not bad, as she turns 8 weeks old tomorrow.

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Next up - snow baby pictures! We are snowed-in in Seattle, and will post Annika in the snow pics later!

Friday, December 19, 2008

5 times make a habit?

Well, maybe not a habit, per se, but certainly can mark a trend.

Annika has now slept five nights - through the night - in a row. All before 8 weeks old. The first couple nights she was sleeping from about 8 PM to 3 or so. Sounds early, but is was 7 hours of sleep! I don't mind the early part!!! :-) Last night she slept from 10:30 PM to 6:00 AM. How perfect is that?

She is smiling all the time, too. I look forward to picking her up from he crib in the morning, or after a nap and she flashes me the biggest grin. Talk about a high! I'm addicted to her little smiles. Victor hasn't joined us in Seattle yet, and I'm sure he'll be astounded at how much she has changed in just one week!

We are enjoying the lovely snow and staying very cozy at my parents house. We are well stocked on hot chocolate and whipped cream, and have the fireplace blazing. It's a great vacation so far!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

I'm a real mom!

Today I hand-picked a baby nose bogey, as well as caught spit up in my bare hands. I now feel like a real mom!

Annika has also slept all night for the fourth night in a row. Maybe it's all that rum and eggnog I'm drinking before I nurse her to sleep? Ha ha...just kidding. Seriously - kidding.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

All Night Long!

Naps? What naps? I don't need no stinkin' naps!

I am the happiest mom on the block this week as Annika has now successfully slept through the night TWO nights in a row!!!!!!! I personally love getting 6 hours of continuous sleep.

She is officially 7 weeks old today, and still a complete joy to be around. She is smiling all the time, and I get absolutely high when she flashes me her wide-mouth grin when I pick her up out of the crib after a nap. My mom and I have tried to capture this smile, but the little stinker will not play to the camera! Here's what we have so far:
Avoiding the camera, but still smiling!
Tail end of a grin! We'll catch her in the act soon....


Sunday she refused to take a nap. I would try to lay her down as she would start to nod off, but she would have none of it. She would snap awake and insist she was only kidding about falling asleep. Fortunately, she is such a good natured baby that she very easy to hang out with.
We set her in the boppy on the dining room table while we were playing cards.
Learning the rummy ropes from Grandma A. Our family plays progressive, or International rummy and are quite competitive. G-Ma A is probably the most aggressive player, so a good tutor for Annika...lol.A familiar scene in the family house - playing cards. Also, notice the product placement? This particular 4Bux drink is a (decaf!) Grande Espresso Truffle Mocha - a very nice milder alternative to the regular 4Bux mocha, which I feel is too rich.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Earning her wings and first snowfall!

Yesterday was Annika's 1st airplane ride! I need to really sing my baby's praises as she was absolutely perfect the entire time. Fortunately, the plane was 1/2 empty so I was able to snag the empty seat next to me for her car seat. I had the bottle ready for take off as I was advised this is often a problem on little ears. Thank you Aunt Traci for calling and giving me all kinds of baby travel tips. Much appreciated!!!!!
Daddy's girl - sleeping through take-off!!!! One of Victor's skills, too!

She slept through takeoff.
She slept the entire flight, opening her eyes a couple times.
She slept through the landing and all the loud announcements.

Love this kid!!!!!
Peaceful slumber.

She got all kinds of compliments from the stewardesses (er, um - I mean flight attendants) and other passengers on not only how well mannered she was, but how beautiful too!

The really sweet stewardess also gave Annika her first wings too! Can I mention how much I love JetBlue????? And even more, love the direct flights they have from my perfect little Long Beach airport to everywhere I want to visit people (Seattle, Salt Lake, Chicago!)!!!!
Shameless plug for JetBlue!!! Love this airline!

We snuck into town a few days early and didn't tell my niece and nephew, Scout and A-rob, that we were in town. My sister told them they needed to go into g-ma's house to pick up a special package. They were so suprised, and loved to finally meet Annika! A-rob would leave me weekly messages on the phone about how much he misses me, loves Annika, and couldn't wait to meet her. He is such a sweet little man.
A-Rob holding Annika for the first time! Such a sweet cousin!
Scout is growing into such a beautiful young lady, both inside and out!

My dad, AKA the baby whisperer, immediately charmed Annika. I'm so glad they finally met. We have to wait until next Christmas for Annika to meet her Peruvian abuelos, and I know it's very hard on them to have to wait.
Snuggling with grandpa. It was love at first sight!

We also met my brother Doug and his lovely girlfriend Amber for dinner, when he also met Annika for the first time. It was also the first time my parents met Amber. We had a great dinner, and I think Amber will do a great job of keeping Doug on his toes!
Dapper Doug holding his favorite niece for the first time!

We flew into Seattle before the snow. We are experiencing a bit of a cold snap - quite a difference from SoCal weather. We are layered up and keeping toasty warm!
She has about 3 layers of clothes/tights/thermals on here, so no comments about not having a coat/hat/gloves on the baby. We were only outside a minute... :-)

Now, the cats are slowly adjusting to the invasion of their home our new, loud little critter. It is interesting to watch how they are now interacting with the new baby stuff that has taken over the house. Here is Osa perching in the stroller.
More posts later this week!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Six weeks!

Gazing at daddy.

We made it to six weeks, today, without losing, dropping, or damaging the baby in any way. We, in our zombie-sleep-deprived-stupor, feel pretty accomplished about that!

Seriously, it has flown by and we are having the time of our lives, despite the zombie-sleep-deprived-stupor part. We've worked out a pretty good system (thanks to Stacy O's suggestion!) where Victor gets home from work and I go to bed to catch 4-5 solid hours of ZZZZs. I take over at midnight when I'm on baby duty for the duration. I only can lightly doze during this time as every little sound she makes has me on alert. Ah, the joy of a new mom! :-)

I CANNOT, seriously, cannot believe how big she is getting. She has blown past the Gerber 3 month clothes, and starting to push the seams of the Carter's 3 months (which are a lot roomier). I am putting her in 6 month sleepers now, and they FIT! Good grief. The other day - true story - I laid her down to change her, looked away, and when I looked back a second later, she was bigger. I kid you not. Just like that.

Last week I went to a MeetUp group of moms. Nine moms/babies were there, and Annika was the youngest by 2 days. All were under 1. Looking at a three, 6, and 9 month old had me floored in the sense of seeing how much bigger and different they were. I'm in awe of how much she is going to change in the coming months.

Even the last few days she has changed up on us. She is learning to have opinions and be vocal about them. No idea where that comes from! Most notably, we have been placing her on the boppy on the couch when she's awake and hanging out with us in the living room. No more. I can't even lay her in it for a moment. She yells at me "What are you doing, Mom!" She wants her new rocker where she is much more upright and has her new toys to look at. She has pulled this on me twice now.

Even in the new rocker she is changing! There are some brightly colored dangling toys that she is mesmerized with! They are a dog (named Campo), and kitty (Cyrus) and a baby chick rattle (Pio Pio). While looking at them, she kicks, waves her arms, and talks to them. Very adorable. And because she is moving, it makes the chair rock. It is definitely more stimulating than the boppy. She also has a small orange monkey (Tio Mono) that she likes to stare at as well.

We are learning her little cues, such as the difference between the hungry fuss, and the need-to-burp fuss. She is training us well.

She is smiling too!!!! I haven't yet been able to get a picture of one yet, but working on it! And she loves music, and when I sing to her.

Here are some pictures from the last two weeks. Due to some camera issues, I don't have too many.
This is George, sleeping, curled around a cloth ducky-sponge for Annika's bath. Looks like it's a cat toy now!

Osa took over the boppy. She sat in it ALL DAY, and every time I looked at her, she changed positions to something 'more comfortable'. (The beautiful blankie was made by Aunt Traci in Chicago!)

"Osa! Move!"
"NO, I was here first!" (Beginning of 'sibling' rivlary?)

Rad hair day, chillin' on mama's lap.

"High five, mama!" (Her first Thanksgiving!)

Not enough memory for video, but in this picture she is chattering away at the baby chick rattle.

Looking content in her new preferred seating arrangement.

Dozing in the new rocker. It also vibrates, so she can get a massage while she sleeps.