Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Dear Future Babysitter,

For your convenience, I have compiled a list of things to assist anyone who is lucky enough to babysit our lovely Ada. This should give you many options for activites and methods for Ada's daily life, including play, eating, diaper changes, and sleeping. That pretty much covers everything that Ada does in a day, except for being adoringly cute, but she has that covered. :)


Standing and/or walking. Now that she has figured out how to put one foot in front of the other, Ada now demands that the majority of her waking hours are standing, or preferably walking to explore her current environment. I tell people about this, and they smile and nod, but as soon as they have her on their lap they usually say "She really does prefer to stand, doesn't she!" She doesn't want her lovely legs to go to waste.

Ada will rarely say no to Sophie. Sophie is her absolute favourite toy, she comes with us everywhere we go, and she is best to be at arms reach at all times. Who is Sophie? Her chewable giraffe, of course. Apparently, this giraffe has been the most popular toy in France for the past 40 years and is very difficult to get here in Canada. But thanks to her favourite Andrew and his cousin's store Cheeky Monkey, we are a proud owner of this beloved toy and Ada can fully attest to her popularity.

Her Jolly Jumper. She now recognizes the sight of her Jolly Jumper, so we need to keep it hidden until we want her go in it. Once she sees it, her legs start pumping in anticipation, or perhaps she is warming up for some serious jump-jump-jumping. Recently I have had to tuck in the tag on the front of the harness so as not to distract the president of the Society of Taking Things Off of Other Things and she can concentrate on her jumping.

Ada hasn't figure out that her bath is not actually meant for play, but don't tell her. She also is starting to recognize it when I start to set up her bath, and will pump her legs to warm up for some serious leg splashing. She has no concerns about having water being splashed on her face, or even having water poured over her head to rinse off the soap. She stops her splashing (briefly), blinks a few times, looks up to see who poured water over her head, then continues on Splashing Duty. Recently her splashing has gone to a new level, and I now where a top that I don't mind getting thoroughly splashed on while giving Ada her bath. Taking her out of her bath can be of concern for Ada, but a few songs and a happy voice during the drying process, and she'll soon forget that there is water still in the tub to be splashed. Besides, by this point Calvin is busy dipping his paws in it and trying to drink it without falling in.

Anything involving going out. Either strapped in her Baby Bjorn or snuggled in her stroller, anywhere that involves people to smile at, other babies to play with, or just general excitement to watch. This includes the mall, chinatown and Kensington market, playgroups, the TTC... Anywhere, really.


Well, she loves her milk of course, but anyone but me has to use her Playtex Orthodontic Nipple on a bottle. :)

So far any solids are all homemade, except for her rice cereal. She will usually eat about 2 Tbsp at a time, and she has 2 to 3 meals a day. She would also like to eat the spoon (or make awful squeaky noises on her gums with it) and make a huge mess all over her hands and face, but I try not to let this happen.

For breakfast, we usually do rice cereal mixed with a fruit, usually apples, but more recently and something she really likes is pears.

Right now lunch and/or dinner usually involves two or more mixed vegetables, her current favourites being peas and carrots, and anything mixed with sweet potatoes (especially apples). Another favourite, especially while we are out is banana since it comes with its own packaging and Ada really likes it.

She has recently taken to drinking water from her sippy cup. There isn't a brand name on it (strangely enough) but it's the kind that has the soft straw so she can suck the water. Just expect the 1 foot radius around her to get very wet since she manages to defeat the "leak-proof" feature as she swings it around between sips.


Ada is probably the best baby her age that I know of for getting her diaper changed. Not only does she adore her change table (with the ever-exciting elephant mobile and her yellow box of wipes and ONE for Baby Bums to pick up and rearrange), but it is yet another opportunity for toe grabbing and toe sucking. She has been known to twist around to look at her beautiful diaper holder (made lovingly by her Great-Grandma Howard), but she prefers to play with her feet until I bring the new diaper up between her legs and say "Legs down", and then she throws her legs down onto her change pad with a thwap! so I can put the tabs on. Smart girl. :)


I'll start with napping, which is a different routine than at her bedtime. She usually wakes around 7:00-7:30am, so her first nap is at 9:00am and usually goes until 10:30-11:00am. Although she is very tired and ready for a nap (with giant yawns and eye rubbing involved), she won't admit that a nap is a good thing to do when there are cats to follow around the house and giraffes to chew. In order to convince her, I need to slow down her non-stop arms and legs to a degree so that she can't think of anything else to do but sleep. Hence my current love of swaddling. I have no idea what I will do when that ceases to work. Wrap one blanket around her arms, then another tucked tightly over her, pop in the soother, and away into dreamland she goes. If that doesn't immediately work, a little jiggling of the bed to rock her to sleep works as a back-up. I try to have her go down for a nap during the day after being awake for about 2 hours or I find that she gets rather fussy and nothing interests her for more that a few seconds. Life is better with a well-rested Ada, that's for sure.

At night, she is used to nursing to sleep, which is primarily my job. But, as a babysitter, you will have to use her Playtex Orthodontic Nipple on her bottle. But first, into her pyjamas (usually around 7:30pm), then around 8:00pm when the yawns and eye rubs are pretty non-stop and she's fussing more than usual, then it's definitely bedtime. I take her into the room onto the bed, put her into her growbag while I sing a soft song (usually Hush Little Baby), and at this point she knows what is going on and will protest. But she'll settle down into a deep sleep after a few minutes of milk. She doesn't require swaddling at night unless she's really wound up and can't get herself to sleep.


*Note: I started this entry a couple of days ago, but got distracted by Ada's first tooth that had appeared, but was unfortunately preceded by Ada's first fever. The whole family then shared some sort of horrid flu which put us all in bed for a day, but we are now faring better and Ada's tooth is happily coming through. Hooray!

Monday, April 09, 2007

One of a Kind

Ada and I became Experts of the One of a Kind Show after spending 4 of the 5 days there. Pam successfully ran her booth with her fabulous display of the prettiest purses of the show, in my opinion. I became known as "the one with the cute babies and the cool stroller" since I had the honour of caring for Ada's favourite Liam for two of our visits and I got to use our Phil & Teds stoller to the max. It is a great stroller, for anyone that knows someone researching strollers. I know quite a few other mothers that also have this stroller and love it since it can easily be converted from single (either infant mode or toddler mode) to double (either infant-toddler mode or toddler-toddler mode) very easily, and doesn't take up the room that other double strollers do. And it is very easy to move around the city. After that, I should be expecting a cheque in the mail from Phil & Teds for promoting their product. :)

Off the shoulder

Ada is now onto yet another new phase of babyhood. She is tired of this sitting around in one place, and lying around rolling does not interest her in the least. You would think she would be interested in crawling, but she has decided she is done with all this baby stuff and is determined to be a toddler as soon as possible. At playgroups I have her seated with the other babies her age and younger that are happily lying down or sitting playing with their toys. Ada has grown bored with these babies, and excitedly watched the older babies that are starting to walk around, and she will often squeal in delight wanting to join them in their games. A week and half ago she was standing (with me holding her, of course) and she was so anxious to join these older babies that she figured out that she could put one foot in front of the other to get to them. (I have been trying to get a video on YouTube to post on here, but I've run into a few problems. Hopefully I'll get it figure out soon.) Now there is no turning back, and I spend most of her waking hours helping her "walk" around exploring the house, the playgroup, or wherever we happen to be. No more sitting around for her. In fact, her "bald spot" on the back of her head is pretty much grown in now that she refuses to be on her back when not sleeping. Speaking of hair - it may not look like much now, but her lovely blonde head is definitely starting to thicken up. Hooray!


And she celebrated her seven month birthday over the weekend, this time with her Aunt Sharon and a Corona.

Seven months and counting!

We had a nice weekend in London for Easter, and had lots of visiting of family. Considering the change in environment and routine that she is used to, she did quite well. As soon as we got home, though, she was so happy to see her play blanket, her change table, her cats, her mirror, and her toys and books that we didn't bring to London with us. She had me walk her around the whole house chasing the cats before she would go to bed.

Easter Bonnet

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