Monday, May 14, 2012

Alice: Four Months

Dear Alice:

You turned four months old two weeks ago, and I am just now starting this lovely blog post to commemorate it.

Why did it take me so long?

Well, first, you got your shots. My poor baby: I know why some people are against vaccines and I think secretly, it has nothing to do with any kind of concern for how they're made or what's in them. It's all because of that moment when the needle goes in their baby's leg and that split second of W.T.H?! that happens before a pain-filled cry fills the room. And then you have to try to calm them down after feeling like you're the worst mommy and just betrayed them. Your shots did not go as well as your two month ones. Apparently, you have a bad reaction and it makes your leg turn red and swell up, and your feet get all hot. This time it took you a long, long time to calm down - even trying to nurse didn't help, despite the fact that you were hungry. I felt so awful not being able to comfort you and so did Daddy. But somehow, thanks to baby Tylenol and lots of snuggles you did fine after a couple hours and slept it off. Unlike other babies you don't just fall into a shot-induced sleep coma although you did sleep pretty well.

And then we found out that your great-Grandmother (my Grandma) was very very ill and was probably dying. And it is so important to me that you meet her. So we packed you up and us up and headed on a whirlwind trip up to South Dakota for your first vacation (or as we labeled it a "stress-cation"). You had just had shots and we were really worried about how you'd do in the carseat for such long periods of time, but you surprised us and did fantastic! You played with toys I brought and held my fingers and looked out the window at the sky and talked and then slept. And you took pretty good naps in your carseat too!

On the way there, we stopped at Cathedral of the Plains, this really large church. We had lunch and looked at the pretty windows and took a picture and then hit the road again.

We stayed in a hotel in Nebraska. 

We went straight to see Grandma Regan and you got to meet your Uncle Tom. Unfortunately, we didn't get any pictures of you with, well, anyone else except Grandma. Don't really know what we were thinking. And we aren't going to put the pictures of you with Grandma up, because I don't think she'd like it. But she was very ill and you did quite well with the room, and meeting new people, and just generally were a wonderful baby. We did manage to get some sight-seeing in on the last two days we were there.

You had to wear my hat because we'd forgotten your sun hat in our hotel room. That's Mt. Rushmore in the distance. I love the look on your face. At Mt. Rushmore we got you a National Parks passport and guidebook - so every time we go to a national park, you can get it stamped with the date and the symbol for that park. I am so excited to start taking you places and when you get bigger to hopefully see you get excited at getting your passport stamped!

And we managed to get a family photo taken too - somehow!

This one is you and me in Spearfish Park by the creek. And the next one is you and Daddy by that same creek. It was nice to get out and get some fresh air and have you not be confined in your carseat or someone's arms.

We traveled through Custer State Park and saw amazing views and rock formations, and went through the Wildlife Loop and saw buffalo, antelope, prairie dogs, and even a prairie rattlesnake (yikes!).

Our trip was crazy, and busy, and stressful, and fun. I can't wait to take another vacation with you for a much better reason.

Now, we're back. You're exhausted and off-schedule (not that you really had one in the first place). I had a wonderful first Mother's Day with you - you gave me a sweet card and some yummy chocolate and we all went to brunch together. And now we have to face reality and start working on you taking naps in the daytime in your crib and moving you to your own room. Daddy and I had to put your crib bumper on, despite the AAP warning against them (we usually listen to the AAP about important things), because you got both your legs caught in your crib slats and boy did you cry! You little wiggle worm! You're almost rolling over from back to front and I'm convinced you COULD roll over front to back, but just don't want to because you like to be playing on your tummy.

I just love you more and more every day and can't wait to find out what you do and what you like and don't like. We'll be starting all these new things soon: solid foods, sleeping in your own room, swimming, rolling over, crawling! But you're still my sweet little baby - my darling daughter.