Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Happy Birthday, Opa!

Here I am eating my favorite food, a banana, and sending you birthday love and kisses. I hope your birthday is fun and Oma makes you a really good dinner. If you were here, I would share my banana with you. I'm counting the days until we meet. Mama has told me all about you, though, so I already love you. Get here soon! XOXO

PS: We just sent you a little package today. It probably won't arrive until Friday, though. Sorry it's late!

Friday, December 09, 2005

Doctor Appointment!

Kate's doctor appointment went very well today. Dr. Alvarado wanted to see her before her 18 month well-baby checkup to check on her weight and development. Here's the scoop:

Height: 31 inches (no change)
Weight: 19.5 pounds (+1.5 pounds -- still not on the weight chart, but getting there)
Bloodwork: Kate is slightly anemic, so we're starting on vitamin drops with iron.
Shots: Three -- Kate screamed bloody murder but perked right up when it was over.
Development: Dr. Alvarado thinks she's doing quite well -- a very different baby than he had seen a month ago. Last month, she was tracking as a 9 month old. Today, he said she was more along the lines of a 12 month old, so he is very pleased. He expects she will catch up nicely, and doesn't want to pursue any interventions yet. Things like her body stiffness and language delays will probably take care of themselves as she continues to explore and be confident in her environment.
Other: During the appointment, Kate cruised around the office, tried to play ball with the doctor and checked out every nook and cranny of the place. The doctor thought this was just great!

Next appointment: January 6th (We're taking bets on her weight.... I'm saying 20.75 pounds).

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Leaps and Bounds!!!

Above: Kate's first experience with paint. She was not excessively impressed, but there were moments of brilliance. The bids begin at $2500. :-)

Kate's motto should be "leaps and bounds" because that's how she's progressing. For the record, here are some of the things that she is now doing that she couldn't / wouldn't do in China. These have all happened within the past two weeks:

  • Holding her own bottle.
  • Getting into a sitting position.
  • Scooting around on her butt.
  • Pulling herself into a standing position.
  • Standing alone.
  • Walking 4 - 5 steps (she can walk more, but she's not confident yet).
  • Feeding herself (not with a fork or spoon yet, but she's mastered shoveling in the grub with her hands).
  • Turning book pages when asked. (Hooray, says Mama the English teacher.)
Although she's behind developmentally, I can't help but think that such rapid progress indicates that she'll catch up soon. Way to go, Kate!!!!

Some other notable moments / achievements:
  • Kate has discovered the toilet paper roll. Mama knew it was coming, but hoped it would be a while. Oh well -- at least she knows how to dress for a toga party!
  • Kate knows what "nose" means. And now, when I say "noses," she gives Eskimo kisses. (This is a vast improvement over the teething, drool-filled kisses she had been giving.)
  • Kate has outgrown her first outfit! Since she's not even on the chart for weight yet, this is a very good thing. Tomorrow's doctor appointment promises to be good, though, as Kate has DEFINITELY gained weight. We've been feeding her very healthy foods, and she can pack it in!

Foods she likes: PRETTY MUCH ANYTHING!!!
Her favorites -- bananas, Mama's muffins, vegetable crackers, cranberry jello.
Odd things that she likes: Eel, pickled ginger
What she still isn't into: Beverages other than milk, diced meat.

Music "notes":

Kate is so tuned in to music (pun intended) that her head tilts and she starts humming and dancing to even very quiet background music. She loves to play her rattles to the beat of whatever she's listening to.

Loves -- Mozart, Little Feat, Billie Holiday, Jimmy Durante, Norah Jones, any piano and all bluesy music. She also really likes Tammy Wynette's "Stand By Your Man." Go figure!
Dislikes -- None that we've found so far, although she's not into the "kids" (e.g., "The Wiggles") music as much as we thought she might be.