Dear Hannah, Newsletter #4

Dear Hannah,

Hannah and Her DogYou are now eleven months old. You have certainly grown a lot in the past three months. You have discovered the benefits of having not one, but two pets. You are very excited to see Kyaha and Paris every morning. You squeal with delight as you speed crawl to them. They are usually relaxing on the couch from their very exhausting jobs as the lazy family pets when you reach them. You then take your tiny little hand and WHAP them on their head, mouth, back or leg. Which ever body part is closest to you. They then look to me as if I have control over the torture you are giving them, and then they peacefully stand up and move to the very inside of the couch where your little arm just can’t reach. You will then move on to the next victim in the house which is usually one of the kitchen chairs. You will smack the heck out the chair until you are completely exhausted.

You really like to move furniture all over the house. You moved the kitchen chairs around with such purpose and direction, it’s really quite cute. It’s as if I haphazardly placed our furniture in the most awkward places and you are doing me a BIG favor by rearranging the furniture to be “Feng Shui”. Why would your dad and I want the kitchen chairs at the table? The middle of the room is much more balanced. Maybe you will grow up to become a Professional Mover or an Interior Decorator.

Four TeethYou now have 4 teeth. They are so cute! I brush them for you every night as part of your bed time routine and you LOVE to get them brushed. You smile and giggle when I pull out your toothbrush and toothpaste. You four little teeth love to chomp down on the following foods: strawberries, bananas, grapes, kiwi, bread, and graham crackers. Your dad has introduced cookies and chocolate to you and you are a baby after his own heart, you love sugar! I guess this makes him your “sugar daddy” and you his “sugar baby”.

You feel compelled to clap your hands for everything. If I say, “Hi, Hannah!” you clap your hands. If I say, “How are you doing, Hannah?” You clap your hands. When I ask, “Did you poop your diaper?” or “Do you want to take a nap?” You also clap your hands. It is adorable. Quite frankly, I really appreciate your enthusiasm.

You were given a crib a few weeks ago. Now that we have a crib, all of us (including you) are wondering how we lived without it for so long. You have been in a Pack n’ Play for 10 months and now you have graduated to the “Rolls Royce” of sleeping comfort for babies . . . a crib. Your dad and I don’t complain about the aches and pains in our backs because we no longer have to reach ALL THE WAY down to the ground to pick up all 20 pounds of you. The mattress in your crib is much bouncier than the mattress in your Pack n’ Play. This is one of your favorite things about this bed. You can get much more “air” as your jump up and down on the mattress. This is your way of letting us know your are up and awake.

Cheerio NoseYou LOVE books, mostly because they are made of paper, and paper is one of your favorite foods. You would consume an entire book for lunch if I let you. You get quite possessive of your books when you realize I am taking them away and you definitely let me know that the books are yours. The little paper you do eat, is something you cherish. I know by the smile on your face that paper tastes like chocolate. That is a disturbing thought. You are smart though,you clearly know that avocado is not chocolate cake. I mean, I know that, but I have been around a lot longer than you. A few days ago you were eating some avocado for lunch and I thought I would have a slice of chocolate cake. As soon as you saw the cake on my plate, that was the END of the avocado. You pursed your lips so tight when I tried to squeeze even the smallest bite of avocado into your mouth, but you loudly BEGGED for a bite of the chocolate cake and would not let up until your little mouth was busy savoring the chocolate. You can thank your dad for introducing chocolate cake to you. As Bill Cosby said once, “Dad is great, he gave us chocolate cake!” But remember who really gave you chocolate cake, ME!! YOUR MOM!!! Not your dad. Glad to have that cleared up.

This next topic kind of stinks, but I think it needs to be addressed. In the next few years when you are stinking up the bathroom, the memory of your “non smelly” poopie diapers will be a distant memory. That’s right, your poop doesn’t stink. We had heard rumors, and been warned, that when you started on real food, your diapers would stink so bad we would constantly light matches just to tolerate the stench. Well, your dad and I have come to the conclusion that a diet high in fruit doesn’t make your poop smell. This really isn’t a problem for us, only that we never know when you need to have your diaper changed! Now you have us checking your diaper every 20 minutes just to see if you need a diaper change. I sort of miss the days when your poopie diapers smelled like buttered popcorn. Those where in the days when you were only breastfeed. At the grocery store a few days ago, I found myself checking your diaper because I was sure you had pooped. As I turned around, I realized I was standing in the buttered popcorn aisle!

4th of JulyYou just started walking! This is so exciting to us! You have taken a grand total of 12 steps at one time. We are careful not to blow on you so you won’t fall over. You love to stand out on the patio and walk around the perimeter holding on to the fence. You talk very directly and authoritatively as you stick your hand between the slats, addressing the driveway.

You will be a year old before we know it. My, how this time has flown! We can’t imagine living without you and can’t remember life before you joined our family. You are such a wonderful addition, we love you so much!

Love,

Mom

Invisible

It happened. I am “officially” known as “Hannah’s Mom”. I was shopping at Addie’s (a grocery store) when Addie, the owner, forgot my name and referred to me as “Hannah’s Mom”. I mean, this lady knows me. She REALLY knows me! Well, lets just say she knows what I crave when I am pregnant. She would keep her store stocked with tart Flinstone Push Pops just for me, so I could indulge my pregnancy cravings. Lets think about this, since Addie knew me when I was pregnant, it is safe to say that she has known me longer than she has know Hannah. And yet, she can only remember her name.

Abandoned

I am being abandoned. Mary SWORE she would not leave me alone on Saba, but she is. She SWORE, she would stay and entertain me while our husbands attend school, but the peer pressure of other wives that have abandoned us was just too much. She has caved in and somehow feels that visiting her family that she hasn’t seen in two years is more important that hanging out with me. I will be left to my own devices now . . .

Several of the wives on the island have been rescued from this deserted island gone back to the “Mother Ship” to visit their families. Two months seems to be the amount of time it takes to yak it up with your family, shop till you drop (or run out of money) and secretly want to return to Saba to see your husband. I, too, will join the “Abandon your husband and friends on Saba” club in August when I make the pilgrimage back to the Mother Land to visit my family. Since I am an expert at missing my husband, chatting, and shopping, my trip will last a mere three weeks.

My Very Busy and Important Life

I am lame, I know. I have been on a writing hiatus for no reason. The longer I went without writing something, the dumber I felt about jumping back in and writing about my glorified camping trip exotic two year vacation in the Caribbean. Truthfully, my days are filled with cooking, cleaning, and running errands. I also find some time to let my dogs out to pee, and talk to my sister Jenn about 10 hours a week. She is a long talker and since I am not very talkative, I am virtually held hostage on the phone. Most of my time is filled with my cute baby (she is a doll if you haven’t noticed) which is fine with me!

A lot has happened in the last few months. David finished his third semester of school and David’s parents came to visit us for a week during the school break. We are now midway through fourth semester! Not much has changed. David’s parents LOVED Saba the second time around as much as they did they first time they visited, David is still the favorite child, and Hannah is the cutest, sassiest, baby that ever lived. Even if you think your kid is cuter than Hannah, they’re not. She really is the cutest, it’s official!

Random Thoughts for the Day

David taught Hannah to nod her head. She nods all the time now. You can ask her anything and the answer is YES!!!

David has the nose of a pregnant woman. He can smell everything!!! Today, I put a new moisturizer on my face. A moisturizer I have never used before, and one that David didn’t know I had. It has SPF 15 in it, but I didn’t think much of it. As David kissed me this morning, he sniffed the air and said, “Are you going swimming? You smell like sunblock.” That would be my husband’s pregnant nose talking. I’m sure he could smell a hidden Tic Tac on the floor of our car.

I was talking to Mary (a fellow Mormon like me) the other night. We were talking about what we noticed on other people. Some people notice shoes, hair, noses, clothing, whatever. I told her that I notice teeth. I always begin to describe people’s appearances to my husband by their teeth. A typical conversation goes like this, “David you know the guy I’m taking about. He needs his teeth to be whitened about four shades and could use some veneers on his top teeth. . .” This in now way implies that I love my teeth. In fact I could tell you 10 things I would love to have done to my teeth. Anyway, Mary has “Chicklet Teeth”, like the Chicklet gum. White, and perfectly square. The “Chicklet Teeth” comment is the untimate compliment.

My talkative friend Michelle, who can out-talk me by a long shot, has a darling five year old son named Grant. He is very active and busy “concentrated” as David puts it. He says the funniest things. The other night he was on my patio and picked up a marble. He noticed David standing close by, so Grant felt compelled to announce to David in a very adult like manner, “David, I know this marble is a choking hazard.” David was not wondering why he picked up the marble (we don’t have a five year old, so we aren’t clued in to toys that double as choking hazards right now). However, he was sure glad for the information! That kid is too cute.

David’s Quirks and Milestones

On many occasions , David and I have teased our good friend Daniel about his obsession with the Weather Channel. Daniel can tell you the weather predictions of any city, at any time. On theses occasions when we poke fun at him, we realize just how seriously he takes his job as “the personal weather man for our family”. Although David has made fun of him for years about his little obsession, David has his own little quirk. It just occurred to me today that David, like Daniel, has an obsession of his own . . .The TV Guide website. Yes, that’s right. It’s always nice to have a loved one who doubles as your TV Guide, especially when you don’t watch that much TV. Daniel to The Weather Channel is David to the TV Guide website.

My husband has had two major accomplishments this week that are worth noting. First, he caught a fish. Probably the first fish in his life. I’m not sure. Well, I mean I am sure he told me whether it was his first catch or not, but I wasn’t paying attention. I know, SHOCKER!!! I have never really been known for my amazing listening skills. People like me for my other qualities, like how much I talk. Anyhoo, this isn’t about me. So David caught two fish right off the pier at Fort Bay (on Saba, in the Caribbean where we currently live). He was so excited! He came home with his catch and a big grin. As I saw him, my mind flashed to a period of time in the world’s history where men literally hunted for their families. I suddenly felt so self sufficient. He is now hooked on fishing (pun intended) and can’t wait to get out again. I know this particular entry isn’t about me (for once), but I would like to mention a major accomplishment for me. I not only ate the fish (which I tell everyone I am allergic to seafood), I cooked it as well. I know, that is a SHOCKER!!!

David’s second notable accomplishment is about his hair, which he let me cut. The wild beast, known as his hair, has now been tamed. David is secretly obsessed with his hair. He is very particular about which hair products touch his beautiful locks. He is even more particular about who cuts it. Since there are NO stylists on Saba, David has allowed his hair to get a little out of control. He has cut it himself a few times. This past month, I accused him of looking like Lyle Lovett and Brendan Fraser. Neither one of those actors seemed like a compliment to him. News Flash: They weren’t supposed to be! I guess the thought of looking like one of those actors bugged David enough that he let me pull out the scissors and hack away at his hair. David was very bossy informative about how to cut his hair. I was secretly thinking that he had been to Cosmotology school with all the pointers he had to offer! Needless to say, he had the BEST haircut of his life from me. I do admit that it looks hot. I’m not afraid to pat my own back!

Random Thoughts for the Day

Random Thoughts for the Day

My friend Rebecca has a Nikkon D80 camera. David has been salivating over it since he saw it on Saturday. He has been trying to convince himself that it is a need, not a want. Suddenly our camera is so lame.

My friend Beth, who is 2 pounds, is pregnant with her third kid. She is finally having a girl! I am so excited for her. She now weighs 2.2 pounds . . .

Hannah got stuck in her high chair seat the other day. It reminded me of the movie, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”. I always hated the part of the movie where the Grinch gets stuck in the fireplace. That is exactly how Hannah looked in her high chair.

When I pop my knuckles, David shudders like someone just punched him in the gut or worse . . .

After the Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, David and I walked back to our car with quite the load of stuff in our hands. David was pushing Hannah in the stroller and carrying miscellaneous bags. I was carrying one bag. He took the bag I was carrying and added it to all the bags he was carrying in his free hand as he pushed Hannah. I asked him, “What is my job then? If you push Hannah and carry everything . . .” He said, “Just stand there and look pretty. You do a great job at looking pretty.” This is an example of when my handsome husband speaks woman fluently.

Dear Hannah, Newsletter #3

Dear Hannah,

You are now eight and a half months old. Your dad and I are amazed everyday at how quickly you are growing and developing. The time has just flown by for both of us. At this rate you will be 18 and out of the house in no time! That thought makes me really sad . . . 18 years just doesn’t seem like enough time to teach you everything you need to know.

You hit two major milestones this month. First, you got your first tooth! It is still growing. It looks more like an eighth of a tooth right now, but you and I are SO PROUD of it! I decided you should “try it out”, so I gave you a little taste of tapioca pudding. This was exciting to me for two reasons: First, I was anxious to put your new tooth to use. Second, I love tapioca pudding and your dad hates it. I’m pretty sure the skin on your Dad’s face would melt right off if he saw you eating it. It was nice to share a treat that I love with you. You also tried to feed yourself some Graduates (Gerbers answer to Cheerios). If only your entire fist fit into your mouth, then you would actually taste them!

Second, you learned to crawl! As I was slaving away at the sink (like I always am) doing the dishes last Saturday night, I turned around and to my amazement you moved one knee in front of the other! I then had to step outside and scream to your Dad (who was talking to a neighbor) in my bloody murder voice, “David, Hannah’s crawling!” Your dad came running inside to see your much awaited trick. You are so dang cute! Since Saturday, you have discovered every nook and cranny in the house. On Monday, I turned away for a minute and you literally disappeared. Knowing that you couldn’t be far, I saw one tiny little foot sticking out from under the bed. As I lifted up the bed covers that touched the floor, I saw a happy smiling face among all the dirt under the bed. I am more neurotic than ever about vacuuming the floor; you find dirt where dirt doesn’t exist. Maybe I should chuck the vacuum and let you crawl around, giving the floor a good “once over” every morning. You do a much better job!

We let you ride on Paris. You loved it, Paris hated it. We filmed it so you can see how we tormented Kyaha and Paris when you get older. Paris was such a good sport. You squealed and laughed as you sat on top of the crazy stinker dog. You had to pull her ears, of course, it is your trademark move. That was your way of telling her you were on her, not another one of the siblings you don’t have yet.

You have developed some favorites. You love your Winnie the Pooh Bear so much, he has become your lovey. You especially LOVE that he has tags. You stroke Pooh’s tags until you fall asleep. Really, I think you would love any toy in your bed that has tags. You love to flip pages in books. Any and every book you can get your tiny little death grip fingers on. You flip the pages of children’s books to your Dad’s Medical School books. Your favorite book is “Peek a Boo!” I think you like it because I let you turn every page, every page says the same thing, and every page has a flip out. That means that every page gets double flipped! But who’s counting, you certainly can’t yet.

You and I go swimming everyday. You seriously love it! You have the cutest farmers tan; it kind of looks like mine, only mine isn’t cute. You still have fat rolls (which everyone gushes over) which look like rubber bands are tied all over your arms and legs. This is where your farmers tan is especially cute. You are white as can be in the fat crevices. Too cute!

There are some things that are unfortunately a part of your life. You have inherited my twin brother Brian’s terrible cowlicks. Notice how I said cowlicks, as in plural. Yikes! You have also inherited my crazy aversion to sticky textures. I hope you don’t end up washing your hands 100 times a day like me, although you probably will since you will do as I do not as I say. You don’t like sticky things like suckers on your hands. I completely understand . . . it’s nasty feeling!

On a happier note, you really love what ever I’m making because you start to hyperventilate when you can see you are about to nurse. You would almost think I made chocolate milk, not just the regular old boring stuff.

Tooth? Check!

Hannah takes her job as the “family alarm clock” very seriously. We can ALWAYS count on her to wake us up before the annoying rooster at the farm by our house has a chance to crow. Hannah has her internal alarm clock set sometime between dark thirty and dark forty five. Unfortunately, there is no snooze button on her. Last Friday morning, as Hannah woke up, I thought, “I am WAY too tired. Maybe if I pretend I don’t hear her, she will go back to sleep.” This of course did not happen. At this time, David could feel the thought I was blazing on the back of his head with my laser stare, “It’s your turn!” Of course, my endlessly happy and positive husband got up and brought “the alarm clock” to me. Hannah = Alarm Clock to Mom, and Mom = Food to Hannah.

As she snuggled up to me, she grabbed my finger (like she always does) and shoved it in her mouth. As I was feeling her gums (in the dark remember) I literally screamed, “David!!!! Turn on the light!!! I think Hannah has a tooth!!!” David jumped out of bed and flipped on the light. I’m not sure if he was just as excited about her possible tooth, or scared to death that I might freak out at him if he didn’t turn on the light as fast as he could. I would like to believe he was just as excited as I was.
Anyway . . . sure enough, she has a teeny tiny tooth breaking through the surface of her gums! It is so tiny, that when people ask to see her much hyped about tooth, I tell them it is almost invisible to the naked eye. You really have to feel it to know it is there. Honestly, I don’t want people sticking their “where have those fingers been” in my kids mouth. I don’t know, maybe I am a germ freak. Instead, I ask Hannah to show off her microscopic tooth and she smiles sticking out her tongue. This action is always met with smiles and laughter from onlookers, so she thinks she is doing something right and continues to stick out her tongue.

Needless to say, I announced to all her baby friends that Hannah has a tooth. They didn’t say much . . . I do know when to expect the next tooth though. The night she was busy making her tooth, she was in hibernation sleep; she went to bed at 4:00 pm and got up at 6:00 am. Let’s do that math . . . 14 hours of sleep! The next time she sleeps for 14 hours . . . I know what to expect!