Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Sitting Up and Leap Frogging

My darling daughter is now seven months. Hard to believe right! She is as sweet as her brother and just as precocious. (Don't I sound like the proud mama :)?)

Anyway, seems like last week, she's made tremendous progress. She's been able to sit up for extended periods for a while now. But usually, someone had to actually sit her up to begin with. Now, she can get to a sitting positon completely unassisted.

Then on the weekend, she began leapfrogging. Before that, scooting or rolling to whatever she wanted (usually one of her brother's toys or an unsupervised plate of food - seriously, this girl has a voracious appetite) sufficed. Then, visiting our neighbor who has a crawling, just about ready to walk, 10-month old was the catalyst to leapfrog to the next step. Quite literally.

As the adults chatted, both infants became enamored with each other and decided to size the other up. The 10-month old would crawl over to my daughter to get a good look, then retreat several feet away. Enough of this hide-go-seek game, my daughter decided to get her own good look. We all seemed to know when (and where) the girls moved, but assumed my kid had just rolled or scooted to her new position, and went back to chatting. But when they started playing again, we all kinda noticed my kid propelling herself forward in middair. Odd. A closer look revealed that she was actually leapfrogging. Huh?

My neighbor's Mom who also witnessed this, is convinced she's seen kids do this before and says it's a clear sign that these children will forgo the crawling stage and walk sooner than expected. Great, two kids roaming through the house getting into everything, one sooner than expected. Not sure if I'm convinced, but it sure makes a good story.

Kids Say the Darnest Things

My son turned two on Saturday. This is a big milestone for kids as the first birthday party is really for the overeager parents, but the second birthday party is understandable (if only for cake and baloons), and generally the kids can speak clearly enough to express their thoughts. So my husband and I threw a little birthday party for him. Get togethers like these are important to us because it gives us an opportunity to spend time with our friends, especially our kids' godparents, who are our de facto extended family here.

I love kiddie parties and birthdays. Especially this one and I'll tell you why in a minute. First, we decided on an Elmo theme. We ordered a few Elmo mylar baloons, an Elmo birthday cake and used Elmo paper plates and cups. Not overboard, but cute. I counted nine kids, as many adults and even more smiles. Thankfully, no one got hurt, only one kid cried (for just a minute when his brother wouldn't share a toy) and everyone seemed to have fun. Whew!

After the party, my kids got to spend some time with their godparents over dinner. This is always a blast for us as much as them. But the most rewarding part of my day came at bedtime. As I dressed my son in his firetruck pyjamas and asked him if he enjoyed his party, he replied 'happy day'. I could have melted. (When I relayed this to my husband later that night, he told me he's sure our son meant to say 'happy birthday'. But what do Dad's know anyway?)

Friday, March 12, 2010

Deceptively Delicious

While going over my toddler's finicky eating habits with a new friend, she suggested I get a copy of Deceptively Delicious by Jessica Seinfeld. You know, the recipe book that was all the rave in 2007. Needless to say I'm a little behind the times. Anyway, the book is chock full of creative ways to disguise healthy foods in kids' meals. This is accomplished primarily through pureeing fruits, vegetables, meats, etc., which kids would normally reject, and tastefully pair them with staples. E.g. pureed cauliflower with mac and cheese, carrot in homemade ketchup, pumpkin and yellow squash in chocolate chip cupcakes, and the list goes on. Most of these items sound yucky (particularly the beet in pink pancakes), but so far, so good.

For breakfast this week, I made Peanut Butter and Jelly Muffins with Carrot. My son doesn't care for peanut butter (or carrots) that much, and I happened to have a super large jar of the stuff, so this was as good a start as any. Much to my surprise, the little bugger loved the stuff and asked for more. That day, he must have eaten nearly three muffins. Doesn't sound like a lot, but for him, that was spectacular.

Seeing the food pairs, inspired me to create some deceptively delicious meals of my own. I did this to some extent before when mashing bananas in his pancakes and avocados in his scrambled eggs (who has time to puree everything?), since those two items he will actually eat. Today, I happen to have some already pureed whole wheat pasta with tomato sauce (thanks to BeechNut Stage 2 baby food) that my daughter absolutely refuses to come close to her. I thought instead of throwing it away, I'll incorporate it into mac and cheese, my son's favorite. See, deceptively delicious and cheap. Beat that Jessica Seinfeld.

This brings me to another point. Will baby food purees substitute for these receipes in a pinch? Afterall, they're wholesome, readily available and hella convenient. I tried the books website http://deceptivelydelicious.com/ to contact the author, but the link redirects you to Oprah's website. There haven't seem to be many updates since 2007. Oh well, I guess I'll have to break out the food processor.

Monday, March 1, 2010

On Feberizing Again

Bloody hell, we're back where we started...getting our daughter 'ferberized'. A few weeks ago when she fell ill, she often woke up during the night. Softies that we are, my husband and I took turns calming her and rocking her back to sleep. And yes, sometimes even giving her a bottle (depending on how well she ate earlier in the night). Naturally, now that's she's better, she is still expecting this kind of treatment. Boy, have we got news for her.

She doesn't wake every night. She has the uncanny ability to pick those nights we are extra tired from everything that goes on in our hectic lives, and decides ok, tonight's the night. Go figure!

So last night, we moved her pack and play back into our room (since letting her cry it out in her room would undoubtedly wake her brother next door)and let her go at it. We're hoping to move her back to her room by the end of the week. We'll see.