Monday, December 8, 2008

Brilliance Abounds

J leaves tomorrow for his second business trip since Evie was born, so I'm happy to have his mom here for a few days to help out with Evie. Things are crazy here, as they are with every family at this time of year. Amidst the clamor of the season, Evie is like a little butterfly, emerging from the cocoon of her fourth trimester* (a little early, but she is brilliant after all). She is doing new things every day and is so much fun to be around!

The other day we had our first conversation; I said something silly like "Hi, Evie, I love you!" and she looked me straight in the eye and said "Gaaaa!" and then I said "gaaa to you, too, honey bee!" and she said "Baaaa!" and then I said "ba ba black sheep!" and she said "cooo." You get the idea. It was beautiful, and fun!

She's also started looking at me a lot. (Remember my angst about that? Gone.) She'll stare at me as she's drinking her bottle, she'll look at my face from a few feet away while she's in a bouncy seat or in someone else's arms. She sometimes even turns away from Rabbit and looks at me during diaper changes! She looks, then I give her eye contact and a smile, she smiles, I coo...etc. I just love that she seems to seek out my face, initiating baby/mama communication. (She does this with J, too.)

Evie's also started offering J and I smiles in the morning (everyone warned me this would be my favorite thing...and they are right); even when she is fussy about her wet diaper and empty tummy, she interrupts the regularly scheduled wailing to flash us a brilliant open-mouthed grin, just to let us know that she knows who we are and appreciates that we didn't take off for Mexico in the middle of the night, apparently.

I got my first giggle tonight by kissing her hand as we were cuddling right before her nighttime feeding...whoopee, I can't wait for the giggling and laughing to take off. She's squealed a couple of times, but they were for Rabbit and her singing star, not for me. Oh, well, I'm getting used to coming after Rabbit.

She also seems to be starting to imitate sounds, because she frequently will look at me and say, clearly, "ha." I think she's imitating that I say "Hi!" to her so much. It's part of my mommy patter to get close to her and say in a high-pitched voice "hi Evie Bea! Hi, hi, hi! Hi, Evie Bea...etc." Wouldn't you think that would be annoying? Apparently not, since it elicits smiles and now some returned "ha's."

I never would have thought that blowing spit bubbles is a milestone, but one website claims it is. So be it. She's doing that, too.

Evie's also become very tactile, wanting to touch things, grab them and bring them to her mouth. So it begins: the oral fixation. She's been rubbing her hand along the wall while she talks to Rabbit for a couple of weeks, but now she will also focus on other things (usually red or patterned fabrics) and then reach out toward them to try to touch/rub them. Anything she can grab goes into her mouth; usually this is her bib, shirt, my shirt or a toy.

She's doing great with tummy time...well...what I mean is that she tolerates it a bit better and now consistently raises her head to almost 90 degrees or works on her mini push up skill, unless she's tired and then she just goes to sleep. I think she'll be a tummy sleeper as soon as she learns to roll over; she seems to prefer it. Despite our tummy time attempts, she's started getting baby pattern baldness from her habit of rubbing her head vigorously against her sheet saver at night. She does this during "active sleep" and looks a bit like Stevie Wonder. The bald spot is developing on the back of her head and more on the left side, so I'm trying to turn her head a couple of times at night to encourage her to sleep a bit more on the right side. I'm still a bit paranoid about the flat spot phenomenon, although her pediatrician said at her 2 month visit that her head is perfectly round. You can say that again! :)

She's also figured out what dangling toys are for. Really she's been batting at toys for weeks; I think she did it for the first time when she was less than a month old. But in the past several days she has developed a gusto for the sport that is amusing to watch. She gets all four limbs going at once and tries to use all of them to land blows on any dangling object in reach. We enjoy egging her on: "Go, Evie! slap Eeyore silly! Good hit, sweetie! You show that crab who's boss." We're already parents on the sidelines, cheering on our star athlete. In this case she's training for karate?

I am so grateful for my little girl! I am still not a morning person, but I look forward to seeing her for the first time in the morning. At times like this, as I'm up late blogging, reading, cleaning, wrapping gifts, etc. and she is asleep, I truly miss her. As I've written this post I've pushed the video button on the monitor about ten times, just to watch her little facial muscles twitch in her sleep. Beautiful.

I'm STILL working on continuing my series of posts about adoption; stay tuned. I'm also working on some video and photo slide shows. With J's mom here to help for the week, hopefully I'll get something fun posted soon.

*one of our favorite parenting books is The Happiest Baby on the Block: The New Way to Calm Crying and Help Your Newborn Baby Sleep Longer and in the book, Dr. Karp describes a baby's first three months as being like a fourth trimester of pregnancy because they can act more like a fetus than like a human being (I'm not saying fetuses aren't human, but you know what I mean, right?). We like this idea of a fourth trimester; it helps newborn care like swaddling and white noise make sense.


  1. so first...adoption rocks my face off!!! second, those pants ur sweetie has on are way too precious! third, what a precious pea! fourth, there's so much to post on...i try and pass along adoption tidbits all the time on the normal blog time. folks really want to know...and i love meeting other adoptive mommas! nice to meet you...and thx for stopping by.

  2. aww, those are some really cute pictures. this is a truly mesmerizing time so enjoy her as much as you can. and yeah, waking up to our babies precious faces every morning makes life so much sweeter!

  3. Hi! I'm visiting from IComLeavWe. A little early I know, but I'm so glad I found your site. DH and I are just beginning our TTC struggle, but I also have always wanted to adopt. It's so great to see a blog of someone who's done what I'm hoping to do. Evie looks adorable! I love the "longies." Hope you have a good week.

  4. Wow, she is growing so fast and is absolutely precious! I can't wait for the first time she actually says "Hi" to you! :)


  5. I found you through Jessica's blog. Your daughter is adorable!! I love finding other moms who have been blessed by adoption!!

  6. She is so sweet! Just wait, it keeps getting better and better! :)


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