Early Bird

You are an early riser. You often wake between 6 and 7, though you’ve had a few mornings where you’re awake as early as 5 and you’re ready to start your day. At that early hour your dad is in denial that you’re really up and wanting to play, and he brings you to our bed and tries to get you to snuggle. I can do nothing but smile and giggle as he lies there, eyes closed and arm wrapped around you, trying to will you to sleep. You roll back and forth, between him and me, grabbing at our noses, lips, hair, sometimes hitting us to get our attention, pulling the sheets here and there. There is absolutely no way anyone could sleep with your activities going on. But still he tries, lying there motionless, eyes closed, letting you pinch and pull and play. I try to contain your movement and my giggles for as long as possible, but eventually tell your dad that he needs to give up on trying to sleep and we just need to get up.

With neither of us being early birds, this is change in pace for us. But it’s actually sort of nice, getting up and starting our day so early. We are able to get so much accomplished in the hours before we used to even get out of bed. And we’re able to take you for nice strolls around the neighborhood, often walking down to the coffee shop and back. The dogs must be happy with this new schedule, because they’re getting longer walks, more frequently, then they ever have before.

All bundled for the morning walk with your friends, Nemo and Hee Ha Bob


You got your very own swing today. Your dad hung it tonight, and you had a great time breaking it in. we ordered it about a week ago, and it’s been slowly arriving in bits and pieces. Two s-hooks arrived one day, then the chains a couple days later. The actual seat part of the swing arrived today. I told your dad that I’m thankful you’re not older, because you would’ve been extremely frustrated knowing that someday soon you’d have a swing, but that for the last few days you just had parts.

Loving the swing!

Can’t get enough

You’ve Got to Crawl Before you Can Walk

Today the old adage ‘you’ve got to crawl before you can walk’ was enumerated for us at the PT/OT appointment. You’ve been trying to stand for weeks. Even at our last appointment, over a month ago, you were arching your back, leaning into us, and trying to stand rather than stay in the sit position we were trying to place you in. At that time the doctors encouraged us to try and continue having you sit, rather than give into you standing and supporting your stand. We’ve dutifully been working on sitting, and you are great at it now, able to sit without any support and virtually no bobbles. Over the past few weeks you’ve been army crawling, but you haven’t taken off and perfected it like I thought you would. Your focus still seems to be on wanting to stand. You try to pull yourself up on the Exercauser, on the piano, and even in the bathtub.

Today the doctor said that some kids basically skip crawling and go straight to walking, and that you are showing tendencies towards that. But she indicated that crawling is very important developmentally. We were given instructions on things to work on with you to encourage you to crawl, and she also said we should not use the Exercauser as much. So, for now we’ll work on playing with you on the ground, putting you in crawl position, and encouraging you to move to your toys across the room.

A Wonderful Welcome Home

When I get off the bus in the afternoon and am walking across the street my pace quickens and I anxiously crane my neck around the corner to see if I can spot you. Most days you and your nana sit on the front step and wait for me to get home. It’s usually hot out and you’re sitting patiently in the shade anticipating my arrival. Today you had a hat and jacket on, but you were still happily waiting for me. When I come into sight your nana announces my arrival, and I say hello, and you look for and give me a big smile when you’ve found me approaching. It is the highlight of my day and the best welcome home anyone could ask for.

This evening your nana stayed and watched the Broncos’ game with us. We dressed you in the Broncos’ dress that Katie gave you yesterday, and you fit right in with the rest of us in our gear. Unfortunately, you had to go to bed by the time the game started. And also unfortunately, the Broncos lost.

Ready for the game

Go Broncos!

Birthday and a New Baby

Today we went over to Liz and John’s for the fourth birthday party of their daughter, Mia. There were lots of little ones there, most of them between the ages of two and four. You seemed enthralled watching the chaos around you. We gave you your first balloon, but you didn’t seem very interested in it. Our friend Katie was at the party too, and we got to meet her four-week old daughter, Lucette, for the first time. You didn’t seem very interested in her for most of the afternoon. But at one point you and she were both laying on the ground, and she started making sounds, and you started babbling back to her, and it was just like you were having a conversation. You crawled over to her and wanted to grab onto her and check her out. You were so curious to know all about her.

Your First Balloons

Mia, Katie and baby Lucette

Clap On/Clap Off

You’ve always been very animated with your arms and hands, often banging them on things, shaking them about, or recently, hitting your hands together. Usually your hands were in fists, and you’d bump the little fists together. Recently you’ve been opening your right hand and hitting it into your closed left fist. Over the past few days we’ve been showing you how to clap, either demonstrating with our own hands or holding your own little hands in ours and going through the motion. Your Grandma Stephans has been working on it with you while they’ve been here. Today was one of the first times I’ve seen you really observe something with intense focus, wait a few seconds, then copy. Your Grandma would clap, and a few seconds later, you’d repeat. At first I thought the timing was just coincidental, but it happened over and over again – your Grandma clapping, you pausing, and then you clapping. And it was a real, both hands open, palms facing each other, clap. This soon became your new focus of the day, and you did it over and over and over. When we laid you in your crib tonight and watched you from the baby monitor, you lay in your crib, clapping your little hands over and over. I wondered if you’d ever get to sleep, but you eventually clapped yourself to sleep.

Just Hanging with Grandpa and Grandma

Today we all had a fun, low-key day hanging out with grandma and grandpa. We went out for breakfast, and later in the day we took a nice walk down to Southern Sun for some afternoon drinks. On both occasions you demonstrated why it’s become a little more difficult for us to eat out with you. You are a squirmy, inquisitive little girl! You’re intensely curious, and fairly mobile via reaching, stretching, rolling and crawling. These two attributes make for an interesting combination at the table. Gone are the days when you’d sleep right through a meal, or relax cradled in our arms as we caught up over drinks.

Fun with Apples from the Tree

Love those apples

Grandpa just give me the apple!

Comparing Emma’s height to the tree’s height

Your First Swim Class

We signed you up weeks ago for a swim class offered through the City. We’ve taken you swimming a few times and you seem to really enjoy it, so I’ve been really looking forward to the start of the class. Although I didn’t expect you to learn to swim at this young age, I did anticipate that we’d get to do fun activities with you in the water, that you’d have interactions with other kids, and that you’d become even more comfortable in the water.

Ready for Swim Class

Well today’s class was a bit of a disappointment, but we still had a good time. The class is for kids between the ages of six months and two years, so there’s obviously quite a range there. You are by far the youngest, and it’s clear the instructors don’t know quite what to do with you. They would provide instructions like, ‘blow bubbles’ or ‘dive for the ring’, to which we just held you and looked at them. They’d swim up to each group of parents and kids, and inquire how it’s going. When they got to us they’d comment on how cute you are and how it looks like you’re having fun, then they’d leave. Super helpful. Apparently I’m paying for this class so the instructors can tell me the obvious. Over and over and over. Every time they gave a different instruction and swam up to see how it was going, they’d make the same comments, “She is sure cute. Looks like she’s still having fun.” It’s going to be interesting to see if this is how all of the classes go. Today’s class was at a different pool then the one we’re normally scheduled for, so I’m hopeful these instructors stay with the pool, and that we’ll get new instructors when we switch to the new pool next week.

Grandpa and Grandma Arrive

Your grandma and grandpa arrived today. They drove here from Nevada and brought lots of things for you. My favorite is a little old rocking chair that used to belong to your grandma when she was a little girl. For now a little teddy bear sits on it, but someday you’ll rock on it and read books, maybe to the teddy bear. I think your favorite item that they brought is the rocking horse from their house that you rode on when we were there in July. And the other item they brought for you is a huge toy chest in the shape of a barn on the ranch where your grandma grew up, and where your dad used to work during the summer. Your grandma’s brother, Mike, made it for your dad when he was little. It will be the perfect place to store your treasures.

Having a stare down with grandma


Isla, the baby in your nanny-share, has purportedly been saying ‘mama’ for weeks. Her mom told me that Isla calls for her when they lay her down in the crib, or when she’s hungry. I was skeptical. Although maybe she is saying ‘mama’, I doubted that she actually connects it with wanting her mom. But then this week the nanny confirmed that she is saying ‘mama’, and meaning it; she told me that towards the end of the day Isla often gets cranky and just wants her mom, and she repeats ‘mama’ over and over.

The last few days you are saying ‘mamamamama’ over and over. I don’t think you associate it with me at all, but you’re having fun exploring these new sounds that have been introduced to you by your friend. It’s fun watching you experiment with sounds, especially these vowel ones that sound more and more like real words.