Sunday, February 23, 2014

Nearly 20 Months, Happy 2014!

Oh goodness... where to begin??  I'm still delivering mail, and in a couple of weeks is my 1-year anniversary of that.  Next week, I have a mandatory "vacation" at the end of my contract, which I'm looking forward to!  I'm anxious to go somewhere and do something fun but I'll probably end up talking myself out of it.  B's been through a few jobs, some were better than others, and is on the search again.  We need some happy thoughts for that, I'm sick of the layoffs and my job can't support us alone.

How to describe how much Amelia has grown since her birthday?  She hasn't had a doctor visit in a while, but she's at least 33lbs and 35in tall, so still off the charts.  I'm not worried about that because she's still proportional to herself, and not fat by any means, just proves that the charts don't take Amazonian girls into account.  ;)  In July we had a visit from one of my best friends and her son, who's a year older than her, and they had a blast!  Seeing him run around and play gave her the confidence to try walking, so she was up on her feet at 14 months.  She had some chubby baby legs, but she walked it all off!  She had a few words at the time, but stopped using them entirely for a while.  She was busy concentrating on movement or something, words were on the back burner.  But, she did get several signs down, so we don't have much trouble with communication.  In the last few months her vocabulary has snowballed.  Every day she has a new word/phrase/imitation, so it's a lot of fun to watch her figure it out.  Her latest favorite activity is to point at things around the room so I can name them.  Sometimes she tries out the word, but not always.  Sometimes I think she's just teasing. ;)  In September she started in Rural Head Start, so we get a weekly in-home visit, toys and books to borrow, activities, and socials/play dates.  It's fantastic and I'm so glad we looked into it!

For Halloween she was a bumblebee-llerina!  The bumblebee costume was a hand-me-down, but I couldn't resist the tutu!  We went to the city Halloween party at the Mueller Civic Center and she had quite a time running around.  She kinda got the hang of the bean bag toss (not throwing of course, but knew where the bean bags were supposed to go lol) but the other games were beyond her.  B and I carved pumpkins for the first time (how did neither of us ever carve a pumpkin before?) and sat Amy in the tub with some finger paints for hers. She had fun, and I only got a little bit of paint on me.  The holidays were uneventful, quiet dinners with my parents.  That's fine... we were all too exhausted to make a big deal of of it.  November-December as a mail carrier is insane!  November is tons upon tons of catalogs, every single day, and of course December is packages.  I had some vacations to cover, which was good because B was laid off then too, but it really wore me out.  It's been nice the last month or so to get a bit of a break and have some easier days finally.

She loves to play Grandma's piano, sing along with B and his guitar, play her own plastic guitar, play the little recorder we got her, of course mess with the computers, and dance.  Of course, dancing at this point just means stomping really fast and sometimes going in a circle, or bending side to side, but she's getting there. She hums Where Is Thumbkin all the time and is starting to get the hang of the hand game.  Last fall Mom and I took her to swim classes at the Y in Rapid City and it was a blast!  I should sign her up for another session, but we had to miss a lot of classes last time so it's hard to justify.  My work schedule just didn't cooperate very well so we got to less than half of them.  But, she loved it, and we still sing the songs and play the splash games in the bath so when we do go back she'll get right back into it.  I want to take her swimming, but it's expensive in town... hopefully B's job situation will improve and we can do some of that stuff again.

She loves to talk on the phone (even if it's not a phone... all things are a phone apparently) and gives lots of kisses, can call lots of things by their names if not pronounced quite right yet, loves to color and is starting to get the hang of more than just straight scribbles, can say a few names and generally ask for what she wants, and is pretty good at getting to sleep if we catch her in the right mood.  Naps are still hard sometimes.  She still needs one long one of about 3 hours per day, but some days she'll only sleep for half of that and the rest of the day is shot.  She rarely sleeps twice a day, but we lay her down in her room for some quiet time twice a day anyway.  When she wants to tell or ask you something, it's hilarious how focused and serious she is about it.  She comes up, looks you straight in the eye, and says what she wanted to say very carefully, and repeats it if you don't respond correctly... hopefully soon we'll have some real words in those sentences so I know what the heck she's talking about!  Still going strong with the cloth diapers, and I'm glad we are.  It's saved us a lot of money and we've needed every penny.  We're doing okay, just taking it all one day at a time.  At least everyone has been healthy and we haven't had any major problems for a while.  (knock on wood...)