Wednesday, October 21, 2015


Back in late August, I got to introduce Nik and Charlie to the place of my favorite childhood memories. We packed up an entire car full of baby paraphernalia, and drove three hours north to our family cabin.

All the pictures Nik took make me almost weepy looking at them. So many memories of playing with cousins, fishing with dad, and going for walks with everyone perfected captured. Looking at all of them is making the nostalgia ooze out of my pores! And now my baby gets to start making these memories with her cousins?!

So what does one do at Alta? First up, porch time. The porch wraps around half the house, surrounded by trees, littered with comfy furniture, and swarming with mosquitos. On the porch we indulge in our most frequent family past time: talking until the sunsets. I think Nik didn't understand how much one family could talk until he met mine.

This time our time on the porch was exponentially bigger, because we have babies to tend to. The time on the porch was also exponentially better, because, you know, we have adorable babies to tend to. Porch time also includes a lot of eating. Nik and I ate an entire melon in one sitting that others were looking forward to eating, and I still feel bad about it. That sweet melon is probably why we ended up with the most mosquito bites though.

Next on the agenda? Walks around the lake. In the morning. After dinner. In the afternoon. Need something to do? Go for a walk.

Baby hats are insanely adorable, in a completely dorky way. Also, Charlie's favorite chew toy was probably the top of that Ergo. On this trip we finally mastered how to get her propped up higher. (After this picture was taken.) Love my Ergo, I just think there is a huge learning curve to using it.

Again, walking includes more talking. How can we never run out of things to say?

These pictures don't have to do with anything. Except they mean everything because it is a picture of Charlie in the porch room that my parents have slept in every summer for as long as I can remember. (NOSTALGIA!)

Lastly, we do what we do on every vacation: lay out by the pool. It's not a real pool, it's a swimming hole. This time there was a supposed tree in the pool that Nik and my dad dove down to get. It turned out the be the biggest lake-sea-bush thing ever. We have pictures of people modeling said sea plant, but that will remain private for our posterity.

While bouncing in Grandma's arms and giving kisses Charlie came thiiiis close spitting up in my mom's mouth. That is one of my greatest fears.

This was the part of Alta that shed light on my new reality. That reality being I've reached the phase of my life where a vacation is not exactly a vacation anymore. My previous summer days of laying out and inhaling a book and snacks simultaneously have been replaced by staying in the shade, while attempting to nurse a baby to sleep in ninety-degree weather. It made me appreciate my mom more, and the fact that for years she had to be a mom while at Alta.

We have transformed into CLASS A Stage Moms and take videos and pictures of these two shamelessly. Charlie was obsessed with rolling over and scooting, and combined with the heat her cheeks took a real beating that weekend. 

Babies in sunglasses with opinions. 

I try to keep my first-time-baby excitement in check, and avoid indulging Charlie in activities for my benefit. Because she's not going to remember anything. However, I couldn't help but be the first to help her break the "no-swimming-in-the-lake" rule by putting her toes for a quick second. 

Five Months of Charlie

   I think when people express that they "looove babies", what they mean is the "looove five-month-olds", because this age is the best. Charlie is giggly, playful, and absolutely adorable. She's also not entirely mobile, so she's easily contained. She's comforted just by my presence, and has gained the ability to express what she's feeling. The male patterned baldness she suffered from for the past two months has been replaced with a rapidly growing, layer of fluffy blonde hair. She did not inherit my hair, because it is stick straight. And by stick straight, I mean it literally sticks straight up, like chick fluff. 

This month Charlie has learned how to sit up, and can pivot to find any toy she wants. For a month, she's been scooting, but half the time she ended up going backwards. As of this week, she can kind of army crawl towards her toys, but is most motivated by our phones. (Seriously, five-months-old and already tempted by technology?) She is seriously strong, and uses her 18 pound body to its full extent when you are forcing her to do something she doesn't want to do. (Diaper changes, getting dressed, getting in her carseat.) I'm terrified for when she can actually move. My mom keeps reminding me that she had to hold me down with her knee to get me in my carseat. 
She's been able to bear weight on her legs as long as I can remember, so for the past month she spends a little time in her jumper, which she giggles and bounces like crazy in. Charlie doesn't babble consonants, but makes noises as she plays, and her newest trick is her fake cough routine. She started fake coughing a month ago, but recently coughs as she plays, and really does it when she isn't getting her way. (Diaper changes, getting dressed, getting in her carseat.) It's totally fake, and I think it's hilarious. It's hard not to encourage it by coughing back. She's getting better at expressing herself, and it's helped me relax because I can tell when she's being a whiner versus when she actually needs something. 

The biggest change this month has been introducing solids. Because of her allergies, the pediatrician really recommended we waited until six months. But this child has been eyeing our food since she learned how to see! She wriggles like crazy when she sees us eating something, and it was making meal time ridiculous. I bought mesh feeders on Amazon, and now when we sit down to eat I'll pop in some avocado, banana, cooked squash, peaches, watermelon, or whatever we have on hand and give her something to suck onto. It didn't really come as a surprise, but our chunky baby loves to eat and has yet to refuse anything we've offered.When it comes to food in cans and jars, I've always had a hard time. I swear this problem developed from opening disgusting baby food I gave to kids I babysat. So, I made a big batch of baby food and froze it. I feel that whatever I feed Charlie, I should be willing to eat. But seriously, what is it about pureed food that it so gross? Solids was fun for like two days, but now it just feels like a chore. I figure once she gets some teeth we'll try the baby led weaning approach.

Weekends are a competition for Charlie's affection. Nik still gets easy giggles out of her, but I have masted my song and dance routine to get the real belly laughs out of her!