Daddy has just put up the Christmas tree. By Christmas tree, I mean the cluster of coloured lights about 30cm high sitting on our dining room table.
I really wanted a live tree, but Michael said no.
I want Emily to have the cellular memory of pine as her association with Christmas, just as I do.
As a child, my best friend Samantha had the live tree, and whenever I entered the house, it was all I could smell.
It used to make me so happy. And just a little bit jealous that we did not have a tree as alive and fragrant in our home.
I want us to be that family for Emily and her friends.
Well not that family exactly, but you know what I mean.
Sensory experiences are so important to me, and I want to pass them on where possible.
Michael says he wishes he could give me the Christmas I desire, but for this year, we will focus on our blessings.
Our tree may be humble, but it is beautiful.
When my wordsmith puts it just so, I cannot argue. He always knows the right thing to say.
However, back to the here and now, as I watched, perched on the lounge with the wriggliest baby ever, it took me straight back to a year ago when one Miss Emily Kate was an abstract concept kicking happily in my expanding belly. Moreover, we had no idea what was coming.
I look down at her now and wonder how we made it.
This Christmas seemed so far far away back then.
However, here we are, the three of us, admiring daddy’s expert Christmas tree engineering, and the decorations people have given us especially for Emily Kate.
I know that one day I will get my big tree and daddy can put this little one in Little’s room as a special treat for her.
She will love that.
This week from Monday to Wednesday, we went on a tiny holiday to hotel Katie Lee’s in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales.
We left daddy at home to have a well-deserved rest.
What an amazing trip.
Emily had the best time swimming with Rosey May in the inflatable pool, playing with Benny the dog, and having coffee in the most awesome café ever!
While mummy had a fabulous time catching up with my friend, swimming with Emily and Rosey May in the inflatable pool, pushing the pram like a proper mummy, and having coffee in the most awesome café ever!
Not a lot of sleep was had by anyone, partly because being at Katie’s house is far too exciting for a certain baby girl, and partly because those two top teeth are giving her grief.
She has been clingy for weeks, which to my mind is not a bad thing. It just means her brain and body are developing at a more rapid pace than she can keep up with. For weeks, my instincts have been screaming to put her in bed with me of an evening, but she has her own bed, in her own room, and this is where she sleeps – I miss the cradle.
So hands up who love love loved the fact that at Katie’s we got to sleep in the same bed.
I am not sure who needed it more, baby or me girl.
Admittedly, she has been a little hard to settle in her cot since we got back, but let us just put that down to the change of environment.
Emily is not old enough to miss her daddy, but to see his face and her contentment when they reunited was perfect.
She did not leave his side for two days.
As in literally sat in her spot – the crook of his right arm.
All that playing with Rosey May must have worn her out, because on Wednesday night when we returned home, she slept for ten hours straight.
Thanks for having us ladies.
Thursday I returned to work while Michael and Emily pottered at home.
However, when they picked me up from the train station in the afternoon, we took our grumble bumblebee to the park, where to my surprise from the time I left until I returned her wriggle was entirely different. So much so, I almost dropped her on the play equipment as she squirmed to get out of my arms.
Friday saw Michael and Emily at story time, where Ronja and Emily shared a mandarin, and they were literally thrown out of the library by the grumpy librarian.
Naturally, my husband is very proud of this accomplishment, and made sure he stirred the lady up before they left.
Saturday Michael gave me the biggest sleep in in history, and then Emily and I pottered at home together while daddy went for a walk.
Mind you, he did mow the lawn in the morning, along with all his other jobs, so we did not mind when he announced his intention to disappear for a couple of hours.
While today, we have had a very busy day with visitors.
First, our neighbour Ruth dropped in for a surprise morning coffee, and then my old friends Brigitte, Estelle, a Willi came to meet her royal cuteness.
I nearly fell off my chair when I saw the gifts they bought for baby girl. Talk about uncannily spot on.
Four wooden puzzles, each with the alphabet, shapes, numbers, or animals.
The Biggest Very Hungry Caterpillar book ever.
And a fluffy white lion.
None of which we had, but all of which I had my heart set on.
So much so, I meant to order the Very Hungry Caterpillar book last night, but could not remember my password.
While the puzzles I simply had not found yet.
And our jungle did not have a lion, so what is not to like about that?
Once again, thank you ladies for making the treck, it was lovely to catch up and realise that between friends time is nothing.
The timing could not have been better actually; I woke up so grumpy this morning and was ready to rip my kitchen to shreds, and burn my wardrobe. However, after some quality conversation, good coffee, pretty good cake, and easy company I feel much more myself again.
Phone and internet friends are one thing, but there can be no replacement for catching up in person.
However, back to baby girl.
In terms of toys, her favourite this week has been Benny the dog.
Ok so not exactly a toy, given he is Rosey May’s pet, but for all intensive Emily purposes he was a big walking snorting cuddly fascinating toy.
Benny sounds grumpy, but is the gentlest thing around babies, and although I never quite let my guard down around him with Emily, I do love how natural they were together.
No, this does not mean we are getting a dog.
However, I do like how she likes animals – Just like her daddy.
We have had trouble keeping her amused, even with the array of balls, plastic cars, books, boxes, rattles and stuffed toys available.
However today’s puzzle acquisition seems to have done the trick.
She knows how to take out the numbers, put them in her mouth for tasting, but cannot quite put them back again.
However, I think once daddy sits down and shows her, she will be the queen of puzzles in no time.
Unbeknownst to me, her and Michael have been playing roll the ball back and forth while I am not here, so imagine my delight yesterday when she spent a good five minutes playing the same game with me.
She is growing so quickly.
Even though she has not been her happiness self, we have had a fantastic week.
As long as she is climbing over daddy or me, all is well in her world.
The poor little thing has not had much of an appetite, and even getting her to have a bottle at times has been a struggle.
In terms of breast milk, she is oh so over it.
As much as it saddens me to say it, I think we are finally over that chapter in our relationship.
The last time she had a good drink, and by good I mean more than three sucks and then a funny smile, was Tuesday afternoon.
Sometimes she eyes me off in a wanton way, but she never goes further with the thought.
I asked some other mums about it, and they said it is a phase, they described it as a strike, and she will come back, but I am so afraid there is nothing for her to come back to.
I am not ready for her to move on, but this is how it will be.
Sometimes I look at her as she cuddles in my arms, and I marvel at how long she is now.
Moreover, every time I look at her too small clothes, I wonder how she was ever so small.
I can only assume because her teeth are causing her pain, her language is limited.
Sometimes she seems to have such a headache in her mouth she can barely open it, let alone swallow or form her favourite sounds.
I hate that we have to give her painkillers to help facilitate her through this period, but it is all we can do to help her suffering.
She still has her fundamentals though. Dadadadadadada means everything, along with bubububub, and yayayayayay.
Gone is the kkkkaa sound, but when she is really really upset she has an mmmm sound.
Making sense of anything she comes out with at the moment is almost impossible.
However our sweetly spoken baby has gone and been replaced with a cheeky monster instead.
I know her low husk is from her having a cold, but there is a new edge to her vocals.
She has been such a snot nose dribble bucket this week.
However, all props to her, she does her best to be happy.
Love you Little.
Project accidental potty is an interesting one; now if she does not want to sit on it, most of the time it means she does not want to go. However if she does sit on it willingly, and by willingly I mean not straighten her legs and torso as I try to put her on, she will usually go within a minute or so.
I am thinking I need to become more consistent with this one though.
I wish we did not have carpet, because otherwise I would simply let her be naked baby all day.
Finally, on the crawling front, we have no forward motion yet, but we do have some serious rocking back and forth on her hands and knees.
She cannot yet go from her hands and knees to a sitting position, so we still have a little while to go before Michael’s Christmas present of sweetie pie coming to him when he asks is to be delivered. In the meantime, I am now officially on the hunt for some funky anklet bells.
Which reminds me, Santa, we sent you a letter, but have not heard anything since.