Tag Archives: Christmas

Nine Months

Dear Cecilia-

This holiday season we felt like we started Christmas with a baby and celebrated New Year’s with a little kid. After a few false starts (one legged-Igor crawl, an Army crawl, treadmill crawling in place, fancy backward crawling), you officially mastered forward movement. And boy, once you started you were like a little Richard Simmons. This ball of exuberant energy that just had to move or go insane. Crawling has opened up your world to everything and both of us have thoroughly enjoyed seeing just where exactly this little locomotive wants to go next.

First stop is always the kitchen. There are lots of things that are interesting in the kitchen, especially Lola’s pink bowls on the floor. Sometimes they are empty, but sometimes they are full! Full of wonderful things like water or treats and boy nothing tastes better after a long crawl over cold tile than a little (organic) dog food. And guess what Mom and Dad, these little pellets are even better than Cheerios at marking my trail throughout the house.

Next stop is the office where the dog bed is kept. It’s soft and warm and best of all, the wonderful lump of fur we call Lola can usually be found lounging in the bed for most of the day. After interrupting Lola’s nap, you’re off to the living room where your toys and books are kept. However, your favorite “toy” of the living room is the DVD player where you open and close the cover door like a blue hair, chain smoking woman pulling a slot arm at Foxwoods. One of us usually has to drag you away like it’s last call at dollar draft night. Our typical ploy is to whisk you upstairs (we’ve quickly learned the power of distraction) to Mommy and Daddy’s room, where our dressers and tables give you endless entertainment. Cords? Gotta chew on ’em. Under the bed? A field of tasty fuzz. That paperweight that Mom loves so much? Well you love it too and try your hardest to lift it up and roll it across the room.

While crawling is currently you’re preferred mode, you’ve also experimented with being a biped. For Christmas, Santa brought you your very own Radio Flyer Walker Wagon. You love to walk until you can walk no more, which usually meaning you’ve crashed headlong into a wall or a chair or Lola. You like to load the wagon up with your toys, but even more importantly you use the cool metal handle to teethe on. Oh the relief.

All of the above was momentous, but the one development that has dwarfed all others for us is starting to see your sense of humor bubble up and shine through. Peek-a-boo is funny, spitting out broccoli, even funnier. Filling your cheeks with blueberries till the juice runs down and tickles your chin? Hilarious. Seeing your antics crack Mom and Dad up? Gut busting. You hand out smiles and giggles like they’re free lollipops at the bank. You’re an easy laugh and we wouldn’t want it any other way.

At nine months, you love giving kisses to all things furry and soft, you love music and will bounce to the beat as you crawl along. You start most days standing up in your crib, greeting us with a big smile. Nine months of pregnancy was filled with anticipation of who you would be; nine months of life have been filled with jubilation on who you are becoming.

Love,
Momma & Dadda

(Ed. note: Dear future Cece – if you one day look back and read these you may notice the dates are a bit off from the actual milestones. That’s called procrastination. Rest assured these initial months have been so full of smiles, rainbows and cute pink outfits that spending time with you easily trumped writing about our time with you. Feel free to use this as blackmail about writing that 7th grade book report when the time comes.)


Eight Months

Dear Cecilia-

Late November and into December is one of my favorite times of the year.  It was a true source of delight for me to look forward to Thanksgiving and the onset of the Christmas season knowing that I’d be able to share it with you.

In retrospect, this past Thanksgiving won’t be one that either of your parents are likely to forget. Somehow we hoodwinked both sets of your grandparents to travel up to Boston for the feast marking the first time in his memory that your father didn’t pass through the Vince Lombardi rest stop on Thanksgiving day. We were all quite excited right up till the point we realized you came down with a wicked fever via one of your daycare buddies. So unfortunately we will remember this first holiday less for the food and family and more for the first time your temperature spiked past 104 degrees and your father hyperventilated into a paper bag because of you and not the Red Sox. Needless to say, you handled it with your typical stoic grace. Most of the time you had this bewildered wrinkle in your forehead like you couldn’t quite figure out why you couldn’t harness the full wattage of your cuteness.

Now the fever did break and with a little tinsel, good tidings and holiday music you beat back that first major cold. Speaking of music, if you haven’t figured it out yet, your father and I don’t really see eye to eye on Christmas music. In the past he has tried to institute a house rule that no Christmas music can be played until after Thanksgiving (ed. note: this is true, I vehemently arm myself against Christmas creep. I enjoy the season, just not in October). However,  I always break this “rule” and can be found listening to Christmas music in early November. A fact I happily shared with my you, my new tie breaking vote. And girl you took to holiday music like an elf to a candy cane. Some of your favorites were, Jingle Bells, Frosty The Snowman, and Up on the Housetop. However the sleeper hit of the season was definitely Bob Dylan’s polka style version of Must Be Santa. His Christmas album was no joke to you. It was a spicy eggnog to your soul. You loved it. You wiggled, smiled, clapped and cajoled anyone in the vicinity to join in your merriment. I think your father even came around in the end.

Besides making your father’s ears bleed olde English carols, we also introduced you to the wonders of holiday decorating. Tinsel! Lights! Animatronic Santas! Wrapping Paper! Oh my! On one of the last warm days of the year, we strung the lights outside while you and Lola competed on who could get them in their mouth first (we called it a tie). We also displayed our collection of Hallmark-style, musical, battery action holiday items.  What could be more exciting than singing snowmen? Nothing, except maybe Cheerios, given the look on your face.

Next came The Tree. The wonderful, glorious Christmas tree.  Every morning we’d come downstairs and plop you on the rug in front of the tree and plug in the lights. Even the grinch’s heart would swell to see you clap, squeal, and smile with delight.

We also taught you about Baby Jesus, and while looking at the manger didn’t seem to excite you as much as looking at the Tree, you did enjoy Mom’s impression of the stable animals.

And if holiday madness wasn’t enough you decided it was time to start crawling. Unfortunately, we installed a part wrong and you started crawling backwards. Despite what we came to call your “fancy crawling”, you and your parents were proud to glide past (backwards) another milestone. You are also “talking” more in more and taking notice of your environment. Grabbing and pointing vehemently in the direction of things that you would like to comment on or get your grubby hands on. Dad calls this using “The Force.” He’ll explain what that means exactly in newsletter 108 (ed note. Cece, pay attention. If you stumble across something on cable that claims to be Star Wars but is numbered episode 1, 2 or 3. Turn it off immediately! Trust me.)

Finally, eight months also brought you your first teeth. Two tiny flecks of white that look so innocent but caused so much havoc in the Donohue household.  Our happy, smiling baby suddenly became cranky and inconsolable.  When the two conniving clumps finally broke through, you had some stern and disapproving looks for your parents. Probably won’t be the last time.

Love,

Mom & Dad

Outtakes

From the Complaints Depts: “Where’s Lola on the Christmas card?”

Okay, it was always our intention to get Lola on there. Originally we wanted a family-family card to go out to relatives and then a friends and associates card, but, as is wont to happen Mike greatly underestimated the time (and expense!) and we ended up with only time for one card.

The day we had our little photo shoot was cold and Lola wasn’t all that open to sitting on the chair with Cece. We did get a few shots, but none that ended up working with the card dimensions. So please rest assured Lola is still very much a part of the family. Given the outcry, here are some outtakes to prove it.