Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Miss Independent!

Ella is Miss Independent these days. She wants to do everything on her own...and we are loving it! This burst of self sufficiency couldn't come at a better time with her sister's arrival quickly approaching.

Her latest adventure is the stairs. My dad was visiting this weekend and was nice enough to install a hand rail that is the perfect height for Ella. Her school has little hand rails everywhere and I noticed picking her up every afternoon how happy she is to be able to walk down the stairs on her own. After talking with her PT's Jen and Linda (at great length), we decided to go for it and put up our own railing. It has been a great success! She goes up and down the stairs with a lot more confidence now. She still needs a little support by holding our hand, but it's certainly more of a security blanket at this point. In just the week that it has been up, she is noticeably stronger too. All that work on the stairs is making her skinny little legs a little more powerful!

Next up for the little girl who wants to do it all: POTTY TRAINING! We have "introduced" the potty a little here and and there (just not consistently) and she LOVES to flush the toilet (we call her the phantom flusher), I just have to get serious now about getting rid of the diapers!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Daddy Days

The shirt says it all...and the feeling
is mutual!
 Ella is OBSESSED with her dad. She is clung to him like glue when he is home and calling and looking for him when he is away. Every time the phone rings she yells "dadda, dadda". This is really no surprise and nothing new. Ella and Jason have had a very close bond since day 1. He was with her around the clock in the NICU and was a very hands-on father right from the start. It seems that affection is even greater...especially lately. She runs into our room at 5am and begs for him to let her snuggle in (which he of course obliges, every time). She can't get enough of her dadda!

This is a wonderful problem to have, however the temper tantrums that happen when Jason is not available for her every need have grown into outrageous meltdowns. There is full out crying, tears, foot stomping, snorting, and at times a fall to the ground where the fist pounding continues. So far these meltdowns have only happened at home. I can only imagine how the first public outcry will go. I understand temper tantrums come with being a toddler...a right of passage of sorts. My problem is how to curb the tantrums, especially since this is probably the busiest time in the season for Jason. He will no doubt have many late nights this week as the team prepares for the first round of playoffs. Then the intensity of practice and planning only escalates the better the team does (of course we hope they WIN WIN WIN). How am I going to get through the next few weeks of tantrums...cardboard cutouts, recorded messages from Jason, etc??

Jason goes out of his way and above and beyond to spend every minute he can with Ella. He is also still the one getting her dressed, fed and out the door in the morning. He is also home for bedtime most nights and gets to tuck her in.  So they are certainly spending time together every day. The ironic part of this most recent cling-on behavior comes at a time when Jason has been traveling a bit less. He has made plenty of day trips, but that is no different than a regular work day. He hasn't had any long stretches away since January.

What is very clear though is I do not completely cut it in Ella's world these days. I am good for the basics, but I am clearly not her father, so no matter how fun I can make her the end she still needs her #1. Hopefully her love will remain strong, but her obsession will taper off (quickly). Hockey season has the potential to last until April 7th!!!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Happy March!

Happy March!
Wow! March is already here...this year is flying by. Only a few more months until our family gets a little bigger. We have been as busy as ever with the end of hockey season, a move into a bigger town house, and getting ready for baby, on top of all of our regular activities.

March for Babies 2012 Kick-Off breakfast.
This morning I had the privilege of being the MC at the annual March for Babies kick-off breakfast. This is the second year I have been invited to the breakfast. This year's walk is in April and the goal is to raise $515,000 regionally. Jason and I haven't walked yet, but hope to be out there this year! Project: Cameron's story has put together a team of walkers and since we have become involved with the annual book just seems appropriate to walk with their team!

Oh and speaking of the book drive....the totals are in and we surpassed the goal of 2400 books. This year Project: Cameron's story will donate 2,456 books to local NICU's. Yay!

Covered in stickers...and loving it!
Finally, I am so happy to report that Ella is doing great. She has just grown leaps and bounds since she is feeling better. She is definitely growing out of all her clothes and shoes. Her vocabulary...and personality is growing too. She is a pretty funny little girl. I love hearing her talk and TELL me what she wants now. The challenge is just working on having a little patience (for both of us!).

As I continue to be amazed every day by the accomplishments Ella has made, I have also found myself thinking just as much about what her sister will be like....who she will look like, what her personality will be, how will Ella react?? Will I celebrate the new babies every moment as much as I have all of Ella's "firsts"? Just three months left until the big day! We can't if we could just agree on a name ;-)