Happy Valentine's Day!

Update on poor Granda’s wing:

They removed the hard brace earlier this week and after closer examination determined that he did NOT break anything afterall! He is allowed to wear real shirts and no longer must keep his arm “pledge allegiance” style. We are still worried about all the pain he had and the terrible swelling, but no sign of a break is a very good thing. In case you were wondering about his beloved chariot, his car is also on the mend, though the jury is out on if it will be completed to his high standards.

Caroline enjoyed her day with Mommy at work yesterday. I attempted to leave to drop her mid-morning, but was met with Noah’s Ark style flooding and many a senior warning me against travel. {were they unintentionally exaggerating the conditions as many seniors who are wary of driving in inclement weather have been known to do? Perhaps. I could see the deep puddles in the parking lot swirling and I could also see the emergency trucks diverting cars away from the underpass which is very prone to flooding, so I took their warnings to heart} I kept her for the rest of the day me and she was so well behaved. The seniors were delighted to have Caroline and she entertained them at lunch by crawling across the entire length of the dining room at lightening speed. I was happy because this ended up being quite an exhausting activity and she promptly fell asleep for a TWO-hour nap. Mostly I was startled to see how much she has grown since she was last here. She was into everything and amused herself by pulling things off the first three shelves of my bookcase, opening and closing the desk drawers, and climbing in and out of her car seat. We left just before 4pm when she slipped and bumped her head on my heating vent. Nice.

I also received my first daycare craft this morning. Sara worked with Caroline earlier this week and put together a Valentine for Steve and I with her feet prints and handprints inside a heart. It was so sweet of Sara and I noted that there were no other handprint Valentines in any of the other cubbies. She did this JUST for us. I also discovered a silly note Sara and Michelle wrote about missing Caroline yesterday and our impending trip to Mexico. I feel like we have established a strong relationship with the girls and while I try to be careful in maintaining the professional distance that I should, I know that ultimately Caroline benefits from us having a more personal and open connection to her caregivers. Lately at pick up and drop off I have spent more time asking them questions, how Caroline’s day was, and they in return have become even more effective communicators. Previously they would have shared that she ate her entire lunch, but now I get more detailed reports. “She ate most of it by 1pm, she loved the sweet potatoes, was not a big fan of the chicken. She could use another cup for water.” The line seems to be a bit blurred between professional and personal, but I think that for now that is ok. Caroline will be with them in this room until she turns three, so the better relationship I have with them now the better for Caroline in the long run.

On my day off when I picked her up early I stayed and chatted with Sara while she finished feeding Hannah some yogurt because there was a little boy, just a month younger than Caroline, who was absolutely inconsolable. I gathered up Caroline’s cups and blankets and touched his hand to calm him and he literally grabbed my wrist with both hands and pulled it close. Sara informed me that he cries from the moment he gets dropped off until the moment he is picked up and the only ones who can soothe him are other parents (how does he know we are parents?!) or his own mom. He seems to lack the ability to self-soothe and it was incredibly difficult (physically and emotionally!) to remove myself from his super grip to exit with Caroline. His name is Michael and he only comes in a couple times a week for a few hours, but those hours are very stressful for him. Poor little guy.

I haven’t shared anything lately about sleeping or weaning. I was ultra concerned that we would be in nighttime hell because Caroline seemed so dependent on her bedtime nursing sessions. This is SO not the case, nursing moms rejoice! Friday night she was not interested at all and went to sleep with a bit of effort, but not effort of the pull your hair out from utter frustration variety. Since then she has been heading to bed after bath, tooth brushing, and books. Some nights we can tell that her teeth are bothering her and she gets a dose of Motrin to ease her into slumber, but generally she reads her books, cuddles with mommy, and gets herself to sleep in her crib all by herself. I thought I would really miss those bedtime sessions that ended with milky sighs of contentment and that “so full” rosy glow in her cheeks. I do in some ways, but mostly I am in love with the way she leans on my chest, tucks her thumb into her mouth, and somehow finds my warmth and a gentle back rub to be just as soothing as a bedtime snack. Mornings are going really well too. Steve still gets up with her and now he gets her dressed for the day while I finish getting ready. Then all three of us cuddle up together in bed to watch the first 15 minutes of the Today Show before I bring her down for her breakfast where she devours her milk and whatever I offer her. So we are done and I am ok with it and she is doing really well. I couldn’t be more proud of us that we made it the full year we wanted to and that the transition to whole milk and bedtime has been smoother than smooth.

What’s Caroline Eating Today?

Scrambled egg with cheese
Whole Grain waffle
Chicken Parm from last night (she wasn’t the biggest fan)
Peas and Carrots
Veggie BootyMotts 50 50


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