Bad Hair Day

And there's not much that can be done about it...

I can wash it, brush it flat, and it will dry and rise and stay up there, every single time!

Bah, she's cute anyways... :o)



Daddy came back from work early, and gave me the afternoon off! YAY!!!

AND! He brought some wine back from the store!
Now we can have a proper Thursday's Pizza Night!

AND! AND! He vaccuumed too!
(Sorry for the blurry picture... the battery died right after this shot...)

Off to do My Own Things!

Found it! And I'm doomed...

Yummy found the off switch on her own, and we had a lovely day yesterday! Yay! Lyra's mom was right: there's a new tooth! That makes it 8, and we still have lots of drool and red cheeks, so I'm on the look-out for more. She's now in her crib, actively protesting this idea of a morning nap with all kinds of funny sounds. It's hard not to laugh, but I need that nap too! No nap, no post...

OK, too much crying, gotta go check...


Oh no!!! She found out how to sit on her own! She was close to it this morning, while we were playing. I guess enough anger will get you where you want... or close enough...

I'm doomed!


Changed the diaper, rocked her a few minutes, put her back to bed. She's still crying wildly, after a few weeks of very good naps. What to do??? She is tired, that I know for sure. But if she doesn't sleep, we'll be back on the whining road... and there's no more wine...


Third times a charm: she's asleep, after I rocked her long enough...


So, we have new favorite toys: the stuffed ones!

She goes crazy over her teddybears and soft dolls and such, and it's just hilarious to watch her hug them!

And she's discovered that since she's isn't crawling yet, pointing to something while going "wawawa" or "yayayaya" will usually result in getting it.

Still can't believe she sat on her own... helloooooooo endless bedtimes! We were doing so good, usually under 20 minutes!

I need my coffee... Ta-ta for now!


Where's the off switch???

Well, we've had a whiny day... Whine whine whine!!!

Whine to eat.
Whine to stop eating.
Whine to get something.
Whine to get something else.
Whine because we can't crawl (oh, the frustration!).
Whine because we can't play with the phone.
Whine because mommy is dressing us to go outside.
Whine because mommy is dressing herself to take us outside.
Whine because we have to wear a hat.
Whine because the stroller stopped moving.
Whine because we're back and we have to get undressed.
Whine because we have to wait 12 seconds while mommy is taking her jacket off.

But thankfully, no whining before the (too short) afternoon nap...
For which she made up by crying for a good 10 minutes when she woke up...

Where's the off switch??? I've been looking all over, can't find it...

Daddy is feeding her now.

Mommy is "wining".... Wine wine wine!



Oh boy...

We decided to celebrate Yummy's first birthday almost a month early, because on December 24th, people are usually kinda busy. Also, we wanted to "set the tone" for the family, and make sure right from the beginning that her birthday was special, and her own, not lost in the Christmas craziness. So, we had the family over for brunch on Sunday... 14 (very nice) people, most of them (not all, some being only 2...) offering to help, and an omelet (recipe below) that wouldn't cook (of course, I had put 20 eggs instead of the 8 the recipe called, and didn't realize I should then multiply the cooking time by about 37...). But my cake came out quite cute if I may say so myself, and Yummy had a grand time with the guests.

Tasting the icing... Final decision? Yucky!

We all agreed that kids are born with some pretty good instincts, things we don't really need to teach them: feeding, breathing, opening gifts... She had never opened one before, and mastered the task (and, most importantly, the goal!) in about 17 seconds! Quicker than it took to bake the omelet...

The last guest left at around 3h30PM, and S and I cleaned up during naptime, then crashed in front of the fireplace (first fire of the season, yay!), with glasses of scotch.

I see a caterer in my future.

The good thing to all the excitement is that my baby was so tired, she only woke up once during the night, for a bottle, and then zoom, back to sleep! The average lately has been 4-5 times...

But! We are now waking up with a smile more often than with a cry!
With her beloved and oh-so-essential-for-comfort rags:

And she plays peekaboo in her crib...
This one cracks me up!


An update

Well, my cute Yummy sure is keeping me busy! We've had some "firsts" this week, some of them making me miss my baby already... The girl is growing too fast!

She is now, very proudly may I add, doing a few signs, but only when we say the word. And even then, she sometimes confuses them, which is quite funny! We're still waiting for a spontaneous use. As I was typing this besides her, she very nicely accepted to do them all (and didn't miss any!) so that I could capture them. Here we go:


"Bye bye" (opening and closing her hands)


"How old are you?"

(That one we taught her to impress the family this week-end, as we are celebrating her birthday a month early, to make it more special than on Christmas Eve, which is her official birthday...)
(And since they read my French blog, I'm safe posting it here!)

She also signs "no" with her head, that one more and more appropriately. And she signs "yes", but only when she imitates us...

On the motor part of things, she is still pretty non efficient in moving herself, or going from lying to sitting on her own, but boy oh boy does she ever wish she could! Which brings much frustration... On the other hand, I'm in no rush to be running after her all day.

I was at my computer this morning, confident that she was playing safely and happily on the floor behind me, when I heard paper noise... and I knew she didn't have paper... I turned around to find her standing, playing with some papers on a trunk (favorite toy these days...) holding on with one hand to a very sharp corner! Obviously, I rescued her before grabbing the camera. I still deeply regret not getting that shot, even if would have been tough to explain the whole situation to the surgeon in doing the stiches at the hospital...

Also, she absolutely LOOOOOOVES books! I can even sometimes read besides her, as she keeps herself busy with her own books! Which is a good thing right now, as I was able to finish the 6th Harry Potter today, after re-reading the whole series before diving into the 7th. I've managed to stay away from any cue to the ending, so nobody says a word!

Another "first": we let her play with her yogurt bowl last night. As soon as I gave her the spoon, she dipped it in and started (not very efficiently...) feeding herself!

Then, I brought the Jell-O out: she dove in and fed herself some.

Right hand on the camera, left one ready to catch a flying plate of red goo...

Because of the storm yesterday, we stayed inside. There was no way we would do the same today, so I bundled her up, and off we went with the stroller to my favorite coffee place. She was pretty good, as I can now read 3-4 pages of a magazine interrupted by some attention and toy-collecting from the floor before we have to leave. We ran out of toys to play with (mental note: get some new toys for such outings...) so I gave her my wallet to play with. I was pretty sure it was a safe choice, because it closes with a zipper, until I heard a funny noise: my cards were being thrown on the floor, one by one... Somehow, she had managed to unzip it and was having a grand time emptying the pockets. I took it away. Crying ensued. We left...


First overnighter!

I can't believe how fast the days and the weeks are flying by! We've been home a month now, and it feels like much longer than that.

Before the adoption trip, I read just about everything there was to read about adoption and attachement. Some rules were set, some were happily broken (let's just call it "informed instinct"), including that thing about quiet, calm and stability and blablabla when you first come home. We had guests or visited friends just about every day for the first two weeks! And this past week-end, we decided to go for it, be brave and bold, and travel to Quebec City for an overnight trip at grand-papa.

Yummy did amazingly well! At first, she was very curious and a bit cautious about the new environment, but quickly adapted and played and babbled and smiled. She woke up a few more times than usual at night and needed to be picked up, but really, that was it. And last night, in her own bed, she only woke up once, which she hadn't done in a while! Oh, and she slept most of the drive there and back, which we had strategically timed with her naps. Yay!

The girl wants to walk so desperately! Maybe she should learn to go from lying to sitting on her own first, or maybe even to crawl, but alas, the interest is still limited... it's easier to cry for mommy... which she is doing right now... after throwing herself on her back on the bed because it's fun...

"Walking" with a friend on Saturday night. Not quite ready yet... ;o)

We got treated to a show of "pole-dancing" with the breakfast counter chairs!

Putting those long fingers to good use...


The sweetest music...

Here I am, supposed to be doing some work-related stuff while S is looking after Yummy. He took her to our bedroom, and all I can hear is the sweet sound of her squeals of pleasure and her babbling and her laughing with him, for whatever reason and whatever is happening in there...

It sooooooo doesn't get much better than that!

OK, back to pretend-work...



Before we went to China, I had read a bit about signing for babies, and liked what I found. Also, having used it with success with kids with Down syndrome in my "other" life, I could see the benefits for young children who don't have verbal language yet. I taught S a few signs, and he became the consistent parent in terms of teaching Yummy the signs for "milk" and for "more".

Well, guess what? This afternoon, as I was getting her milk ready (the girl has no patience and usually screams for the 32 seconds it takes...), Yummy clearly squeezed her fist at the bottle!!! AND, I've also seen attemps at "more", with a big smile, especially when I ask her if she wants more chicken, her favorite food.

10 and a half months, 19 and a half pound of genius! :o)


Rythms and change

I just realized that I haven't written in 3 days... Whew! Time flies so much faster with a baby than when at work!!! Since Yummy, I'm never really sure what day or date it is, everything is kind of blending in together. I even wished a neighbour a good week-end today when she told me she was off to Quebec City!

I'm in awe at how busy a little 19-or-something pound person can keep you! Yummy is still doing great, and things are slowly getting into a nice rythm, which I know will change the minute we get use to it, unfortunately... Going to sleep is much easier (well, generally speaking....), and she "only" wakes up 2-4 times a night now, usually with one bottle at around 3AM. We're getting somewhat regular with naps, and I'm slowly organizing my life so that there's actually some time for MY life at some point in the day. Sometimes, like tonight, it's a choice between sleep and doing something for me, but I'd rather be sane and tired than depressed or grumpy but better rested...

Before I left for China, I got one of the best advices ever, from an experienced mom (let's just call her "genius"): she said "Remember that nothing is permanent", relating to what would happen in China. It helped tremendously on those first few crazy-scary-wonderful days. The real genius part is that it is still helping, and is actually slowly changing the way I see life. Adjusting to a new baby is tough work! But the more I remember that nothing is permanent, the easier everything gets, and the more I enjoy every moment with our wonderful baby.

Nothing is permanent... So, she went to sleep easily at naptime? Not so easy at bedtime!... She loved broccoli today? Forget it tomorrow, the love will be back Thursday or Friday... Woke up smiling, woke up crying, woke up smiling, woke up babbling, woke up crying... Stayed quiet in the car seat, screamed as if a tiger was chewing her leg in the car seat... These are the kind of rythms I'm getting used to, accepting and recognizing them as her way of growing up and coping with everything. Nothing is permanent indeed, and it's a good thing!

With dad, on a hike during my "half-day off" last Sunday

Loving books!

Corolle makes a wonderful chinese doll, which Yummy got as a gift

Oh, how I love that face!
And THAT is permanent! :o)


I saved a life today!

We're slowly getting used to being the center of attention everywhere we go, Yummy being so cute and all... But the comments, oh the comments! Most are well-meaning though, and we have yet to encounter anything too nasty, although we know it will come. S came close a few days ago, when an older man very bluntly asked him "how much she cost": S was taken aback until he realized the guy was talking about the stroller! :o)

Today, at the grocery store, the lady offering samples of some new bread "without fat or sugar" (how boring must it be...) came up to me, as I was waiting for my pastries "with lots of fat and sugar", and told me she adopted 18 years ago, and congratulated me on saving Yummy's life... I got my dessert, and took off with a smile, thinking that if it wouldn't have been us, there are now about 30 000 couples waiting to adopt from China who would have been quite willing to "save a life"...

S is going back to work on Monday, a week early, because he's very much needed at his work right now. He'll take another week off sometime before Christmas, and his boss had the supreme elegance to send me a very, very nice flower bouquet yesterday, thanking me for "lending them S"! For his last day off, yesterday was so gorgeous, we decided to go for a walk by the lake, in Oka and try the baby backpack, which our Yummy loved! It was kind of cold, but the light was absolutely gorgeous. Here are some pictures:



Yummy only woke up once last night, at around midnight, for her beloved rag!

When I woke up again at 6h45, the sun was up already and that I didn't remember changing a diaper, giving a bottle, or comforting my baby during the night... I actually went to check to see if she was still breathing: of course she was. When she woke up and Dad picked her up a bit later, she actually was holding a rag in each hand, so I guess she has finally figured out she can pick them up all by herself...

All this after a pretty traumatic bedtime last night, as she refused to consider closing her eyes, even though she was quite tired. We dealt with an hour of crying before she finally settled down for the night.

So, this is progress, right?


A bath, a rag, and a visa

Yummy continues to amaze me at how well she is adjusting to her new life! She now decided that she loves baths (and showers with one of us!), and had this look of pure joy when we put her in the sink last night. Dad figured out that she was fascinated by the running water from the tap, and that kind of did the trick. There was water splashing everywhere, so we'll move to the bathtub really soon, before we flood the downstair neighbour...

Thank you for the sleeping tips! They helped me, and knowing they come from real moms makes them quite valuable compared to my books! :o)

We are slowly figuring out a sleep and naps schedule that works, and even though Yummy still wakes up 7-8 times a night, we are seeing small, slow changes. There are now (occasionally...) some cries that can be calmed down with a simple "shhhh" from outside her room, but the really loud ones still need us to come in and give her her rag (actually a sof baby facecloth) back. She was used to comfort herself with one at the orphanage, and still uses that method here, which generally works wonders. The beauty of it is that we have about 18 of them, and can rotate (and wash!) them without any fuss. When she loses one in her bed, she cries with her eyes shut: even though I've tried putting a bunch in the crib, she can't find them! So we go in, gve it back to her, and everybody goes back to sleep for another hour or two...

We are also starting a "going to bed" routine, with dinner, some play time, a bath (during which she had so much fun and got so excited that it totally defeated the purpose...), a few books, a bottle, and then the crib. We've started putting her in bed just before she falls asleep, and it actually sometimes work.

So, all in all, we have an amazing baby, with sleep really being the only issue. And according to your comments, they all have issues with sleep at one time or another. So we're good. And getting better. And completely in love... :o)

Oh, and we got her a visa that will allow us to go (spend money! Love that exchange rate right now! :o) in the USA, before she gets her citizenship. Yay!!! If you are from Canada and wondering what the steps are, let me know!


Week-end news...

Nothing much to report, just some tidbits...
  • Yummy had her first shots at the pediatrician on Thursday: didn't cry, but got really sick for 24 hours, with a runny nose, fever, swollen face, crying eyes, and drooling mouth, this one from the teething... Oh, she was lovely! Everything is better now, except for the puddles of drool she leaves everywhere.
  • She is starting to tolerate being more than 2 feet away from us for more than 10 seconds! Yay!
  • She imitates more and more, the current funny skills being the "fake cough" and the air kisses, which she does with her top teeth and bottom lip. Very cute!
  • The girl loves books! She'll point at images, and listens when I name them. Curiously, she's not too found of baby images, but really likes animals and objects.
On a longer topic, sleep is still difficult. We are now making a conscious effort to try to establish a routine, and to slowly help her learn to fall asleep on her own. It works sometimes, but definitely not others, and she still wakes up 5-8 times a night. We haven't had any other night terror episodes since the one last week though. Am I ever thankful for that!!!

She sleeps in her own bed. Co-sleeping is not really an option, as she thinks that when we are in bed together, it's party time! It was like that in China, it's like that here. Plus, we know that she was used to sleeping in her own bed.

Most every site or book I found that talks about sleep talks about co-sleeping, or gives recommandations that a 10-month old baby simply wouldn't understand. Or they say to wait a few months before doing anything too proactive... She's doing great during the day, although can get a bit whiny if she hasn't slept enough. She's more and more secure, we can even leave the room for a moment and she'll wait for us, she's eating well, baths and showers are no longer a problem. Am I asking to much to want sleep to improve somewhat?...

Any good advice from adoptive parents out there???