Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Hannah's First Christmas

Here are some pics from Hannah's first Christmas! Our day began quietly with just the two of us but then we quickly moved into par*tay mode with family and friends!

Christmas morning at home with Mommy

Breakfast with friends Carol and David and their family - An annual tradition

Christmas with my family. It was great that both my brothers and most of their families were able to be there. We celebrated earlier in the week with the children that couldn't be with us Christmas day.

Finished the day off at Grandma and Grandpa Perkins.

A great day from start to finish filled with love, laughter, turkey and lots of fun!!

I cannot begin to express to you what it is like to wake up to this precious little face each morning!! This year it was God rather than Santa who gave me my very best Christmas gift as Hannah Catherine XiaoFen was placed in my arms November 2nd!!! I love you sweet baby girl!

You Know It's Time To Take Down the Christmas Tree When...

...you find it adorned with a bib

and a cookie!

Hmmmmm....guess if that's the worst it wore with being so near her high chair, I should be thankful!! I'm guessing if I look close enough I might even find a Cheerio or two stuck in the branches.

Speaking of Christmas trees, Hannah really liked the one at Grandma and Grandpa Perkins too as it was right beside her play area and she could roll right under it and sit up too!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Meeting a New Friend on her way Home from China!!

Saturday morning, on our way to Windsor, Hannah and I stopped at the airport to meet a special little lady!! D & D were on their way home from China with Miss Daphne and we were able to meet up with them before they caught their final flight of the trip. What a joy it was! I cried when D and I first hugged one another with our sweet babies between us. We're Moms!!! After years of dreaming together here we were with our babies in our arms. Nothing sweeter!

Auntie M was also there as D & D had camped out at their place the night before. What a treat for us all to be together at this very special time!

Hannah and Daphne getting to know one another

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Hannah is 10 months old today!!

Wow! My baby girl is into the double digits already and I've been heard to say that I'd like to stop the clock right where we are. Her sweet personality shines through and I love listening to her baby sounds and wait excitedly for the day that she adds 'Mama' to them! She truly is a happy, content, precious little baby and I could not be more blessed!

This morning she woke up much earlier than normal when it was still dark outside and quietly played with her taggie. When I realized she was awake and made eye contact with her she began her precious little baby babble and continued to play. We enjoyed some cuddle time in the rocking chair in our room and then we both went back to sleep for a couple of hours. I love these unexpected times of holding my lovey and gazing into her eyes then listening to her breathe deeply as she drifts off to sleep. My heart is full to overflowing with love for my Hannah XiaoFen and I cannot imagine my life without her. She is my everything and I thank God daily for her!

Hannah at 10 months:
- height = 29 1/4" (90th percentile on North American charts)
- weight = 17lbs 6ozs. (25th percentile on North American charts)
- teeth = 0 but I'm guessing it won't be too long now
- Hannah is still eating really well although she's been off her bottles the past couple of days but I think that's due to the cold she's fighting and also because she's possibly teething. Slightly pink cheeks and lots of extra chewing on things makes me think this might be the case. Her favourite veggies are carrots, sweet potatoes and squash. She'll eat most any fruit (stage 1 Heinz) although pears are probably her least favourite. She still enjoys snacking on mum-mums but now they're as much fun to play with as they are to eat.
- Her liquids are still exclusively by bottle and I have not introduced a cup at all. I love the time we share when she drinks her bottle and will continue that for as long as we can. She still has 4 8oz bottles of formula each day although has not been drinking as much of them the past couple of days.
- Water is not her thing but I still keep trying. I've added various amounts of apple juice to try and make it more appealing but she literally laughs at me when I try to get her to take it. I'll try and video that soon. I figure if I keep trying with the water eventually she'll take it so I just keep trying.
- Cheerio eating has improved greatly and she can now find her mouth most of the time. Big change from a month ago!

- She sleeps like a trooper!! Normally she falls asleep between 9:30 and 10:30pm. She'll wake once within the first half hour to make sure that mommy is still there. Normally I'm sitting on my bed and she can see me from her crib but around Christmas time it was necessary a few nights to go downstairs and get things done and she was ok knowing that I was coming back up. There were tears until I reached the room (or, as soon as she saw me which is oh so normal) but then she was ok. I still try as often as possible to stick close once she goes to bed and do things in the room rather than downstairs.
- Once I turn out the light for the night she goes into a deeper sleep knowing mommy is close and she now sleeps until sometime between 8:30 and 9:30am. She normally has 2 naps a day although the length of them can vary greatly. If we have a quiet day at home and I can hold her when she naps (which I treasure!!) she'll sleep between 1 - 1 1/2 hours each time. If she naps in her pack 'n play they tend to be shorter. Sometimes we're out and about and the car is a sure place for her to nod off if she's a sleepy girl. One of the only times my happy, happy girl will cry is when she gets tired. If mommy pushes it too long in the evening she'll let me know with this sad little cry that seems to be saying, 'Mommy, it's time for bed. Let's go already!'
- XiaoFen still loves to be in her carrier and this month we have begun to use 2 more. She now enjoys the Baby Hawk my cousin Bridget purchased for me and she also loaned me a Moby Wrap at Christmas which has become a fast favourite too. After the busyness of Christmas my sweetie is enjoying some extra mommy time so the carriers are perfect. She can be fussy one moment and immediately upon going into the carrier is all smiles and within minutes she is often fast asleep and will nap for an hour or more. I love the closeness that the carriers offer and the napping is just an additional bonus.
- She has a bath about 4-5 nights a week. This month we discovered that the Johnson's products were drying out her skin and causing her to scratch so we've changed to Aveeno baby wash (some nights...other nights just water) and then Aveeno baby lotion after her bath and early in the morning and the scratching is pretty much gone unless she's tired. Not sure what's in the Aveeno lotion but she makes me laugh every single day when I put it on her little face and she tries desperately to lick it. Heh!
- Hannah loves her bath and plays with a few friends: purple hippo, green turtle, starfish ball and a yellow rubber ducky. If we get in the tub and I don't bring the toys in her little head swings around and she looks at them until mommy gets the hint. She is also really good about getting her hair washed. We do this twice a week. I use a little face cloth to wet her head and then after putting the shampoo on she lays in my arms and easily lets me wash the shampoo out. While in the tub she also loves to splash and kick her little feet. She doesn't seem to mind if she gets water on her face.
- Speaking of water on her face, Hannah is a normal little girl and frets every single time I have to wash her face or wipe her nose. I think there is a universal course that babies go to that says they're to fuss and fret and turn away every time someone tries to wash their face or wipe their nose!
- After a few weeks of trying, Sunday, December 13th was a big day when Hannah learned to sit up on her own from a laying down position and she hasn't looked back since! It has made diaper changes more challenging and she hears 'Down please' a lot when I'm trying to change her and she'd prefer to sit up, but she's so proud of herself and has done so well!

- Since she can sit up on her own it's her favourite thing to do in her crib too although when she's sleepy it can mean many bonks. Ouch! I try to lay her down but as quickly as I get her down she's right back up. Often she lays down just fine but sometimes she begins to lean and just doesn't get her arms under her in time. Poor little love!
- Hannah's sitting up has also meant changes to our home. The little play thing she used to lay under and play with the toys that hung from it is put away as it was just getting in her way and now she'd much rather sit than lay down anyway. Who can blame her?
- Sitting up also = toppling over so the floors in the family room have now been covered in foam. We're both much happier with this arrangement! :o)
- One of Hannah's favourite toys this month was the Fisher Price Nativity Set that she received at a shower the beginning of December. She loves to play with it and it was also a great toy to take to Grandma and Grandpa Perkins to play with.
- During this month Hannah also showed mommy that she didn't need the Bumbo any longer. She'd climb right out of it so it went back to our friend's home who had loaned it to us. It was great help for the few weeks that we needed it though!
- While Hannah was 9 months old she also celebrated her first Christmas!! It was lots of fun to get ready for it even though she wasn't too sure what was going on at first!
- Christmas morning was also a treat as she was able to open presents we found under our tree. She likes to rip paper so it was fun to watch her rip little bits of the paper off her gifts.
- Hannah was also able to meet a lot of family over Christmas. The week before Christmas we were excited when Grandma and Grandpa Ryan had all 10 of their grandchildren together for the very first time!
- The day after Christmas we drove to Windsor to meet the rest of the family and Hannah was AMAZING in the car!! The drive with stops took us almost 7 hours and she did great! She napped, played, gooed and cooed and just enjoyed herself. My 10yo niece Rebecca drove with us and she as a huge help entertaining Hannah as well as picking up toys off the floor. Thanks Boo!!!

- Our time in Windsor was a time for Hannah to meet lots of family so she stayed in the snuggly most of the time so that she wasn't too overwhelmed. Here she is with some of her extended family. These are the children of my cousins on my dad's side. Believe it or not there were still 8 others and 4 from the next generation who were missing, 2 of which were under 6 months of age! One of the littles in the car seat in front middle is only 2 weeks old and the other....1 day old! Wow! Now that's family dedication! It was hard to believe that at 10 months of age, there were 4 babies younger than Hannah at the party! I tried to add up the people at the Ryan party afterwards and came up with 50 in attendance, 28 of which were 12 years and under! Thanks for renting the hall Bridge and Aunt Chris! Great idea with all the energy these little ones had to burn!
- Hannah isn't crawling yet but is oh so close!! She gets her little arms out front and her feet under her but hasn't quite figured out that she needs to move her little leg to the back but I'm sure it won't be long!

- A couple of other things Hannah XiaoFen learned to do this past month was to clap her hands and also copy. If we squint at her then she'll do it back and sometimes now she even initiates the game! So smart my little one is!
- We also began branching out and slowly letting family members hold Hannah for a bit of time with mommy sitting right there and as she showed she was ready. What a treat it is to share my precious daughter with family!

Here are a few of my favourite pics from the past month.

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