Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Hey There, Little Red Riding Hood

At the risk of setting a dangerous precedent, I decided to make Kate's costume this year. I've never made anything by myself from a pattern before, but with some encouragement (thanks, Kiyomi!), I decided to give it a shot.

I used this pattern and tutorial. Since Kate is so small, I printed out the child size pattern at 70% and added two inches to the bottom of the cape to give it a little more length (in case she wants to "dress up" with it in the next year or two). I probably could have gotten away with buying 3/4 or 1 yard of fabric, but you don't know what you don't know, so I have a bunch of extra red fleece. Maybe I'll make her a Santa costume next year?

Jay made fun of me when he saw these pictures because of the pumpkins. "You're using PROPS now?" he said. 

It's possible that I have, in the past, poked fun at some photography trends (naked babies in weird crocheted cocoons, anyone?), but the pumpkins were just setting the mood. Festively. 


Besides, Kate was super entertained by them. She still can't crawl, but she a champion sit-and-reach-er. And she likes to touch everything.

She also likes to taste everything. How was it, Kate?

Not super good, huh?

 I know I'm super biased, but when I tried the unfinished cape on Kate to make sure it fit, I could hardly stand it. The words "cute," "cutest," and "adorable" may have been used. Or overused. 

Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Snuggling with Socks

One night, Jay and I were trying to get some cleaning done. Kate was a little higher maintenance while in her cast, but we put her on our bed with a couple toys and sneaked out (no need to worry about Kate rolling off the bed in that cast!). After a couple minutes of fussing, she started making her tired noises. We didn't go back in the bedroom for awhile because we knew as soon as she saw us, she'd start crying again. When I finally dared peek in, this is what I saw. We had put away some laundry that had been on the bed, but we must have left a few unmatched socks behind. Kate had apparently gathered the (clean) socks within her reach and piled them on top of herself, snuggled in, and gone to sleep.

Jay's comment was that she must not be my daughter because I cannot stand the feel of socks of any kind. 

Sweet little baby.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Kate's Cast

Kate a little while after her fall on 9/15--there wasn't any swelling that would indicate a fracture, but you can see her little bruised knee. I snuggled with her on the bed, and as long as she was close to me and her leg was still, she was calm. What a sweet little baby.

The Cast. Called a spica cast, it covered her entire left leg, wrapped around her middle just past her ribs, and went halfway down her right leg. The bar is for convenience in lifting and manipulating her. There was a (too small) opening under that (enormous) diaper. The whole ensemble weighed about ten pounds, practically doubling Kate's weight. Because the cast went up so high, she couldn't sit up or bend at the waist, so we couldn't (safely) put her in her car seat.

So we were pretty much home bound, Kate and I. Lucky for me, Kate is a champ. She was her normal smiley, chipper, pleasant self within a couple of days.

I did get cabin fever sometimes, but we were blessed with wonderful friends and family who were incredibly helpful and supportive. I got at least one call or text a day asking if I needed anything from the store, I had people bring over lunch or dinner, lend us movies, watch Kate so Jay and I could get things done, drop by to visit, invite us to places in walking distance, even send flowers (thanks, Katie!). I was very overwhelmed and very thankful. Thanks also to my mom and sister who each came out to stay for a night so Jay and I could do the things we needed to. Thanks to Jay's Aunt Marlene who watched Kate and brought a beanbag she'd purchased on behalf of Jay's Aunt Linda so Kate didn't have to lie flat all the time.

It was a difficult time--especially that first week--and I felt incredibly blessed and cared for. Thanks to all of you for your thoughts and prayers.

The cast was only on for a day shy of three weeks, but it felt like so much longer.When the cast did come off, it took a couple days to remember how to lift and hold my baby. She is so light and portable now. Before the cast, she was just learning to sit up and was rolling all over the place; she regained her sitting skills pretty quickly, but she's only just now (three weeks later) starting to roll like she used to. Thankfully, she's had no pain. It took a few days to get her "standing muscles" back, but now she's great.

If I were a cool mom, or maybe if Kate had the cast on longer, I would have had all her fans sign it and taken all kinds of rad-looking pictures. In the end, I just couldn't bring myself to do it. I think it was just too hard for me--too sad--to try and turn it into something fun. I did force myself to take a few pictures, and I tried to make the best of the situation.

But when the day finally came to remove her cast, I was thrilled and nervous at the same time. Kate screamed and hyperventilated and shook in terror as the tech sawed through her cast, then cracked it open. I lifted my suddenly light and tiny baby out of her shell and held her to me, her legs curled against my chest. 

The tech held up the two halves of Kate's cast, luridly pink with its cottony interior and bits of moleskin still clinging to it. "Would you like to keep this?" she asked.

"Absolutely not," I said.