Friday, December 31, 2010


With all of the snow we've had lately, Ben really wanted to get out and go sledding, so we bundled up and took Lucy sledding in the backyard with Jadyn and Jordyn.

I knew the hill in our backyard would come in handy some day!

Dad and Lucy going down

And I braved the elements and made it down too! Ruthie loved chasing the sled and sledders down the hill, so that made each ride just a little more interesting!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Monday, December 20, 2010

9 Months

I meant to get this up a little bit ago (on the 17th, to be exact) but with the holidays and Lucy's exciting new skill, I got a bit behind... oh well!

This past month was a bit of a mixed bag - we were in GC for 10 days, so when you think about it, a third of our month was spent traveling. Throw in preparing for vacation and recovering from vacation, and it seems all I can remember about last month was TRAVEL! It did make me think about all of the places this little girl has been in 9 months... some vacations, some visits to see friends who have moved (many of our best friends moved this past year... giving us even more reason to travel!):
1. Pigeon Forge, TN
2. Lake Wawasee, IN
3. Lake Michigan, MI
4. Panama City, FL
5. Haubstadt, IN
6. Cincinnati, OH
7. Blacksburg, VA
8. And of course, Grand Cayman

What a well traveled little baby! Needless to say, I think we'll be staying in good old Indianapolis for the next couple months to recover a bit!

Anyway, no major changes in Lucy's milestones this past month (she walked the day after she turned 9 months, so technically she hadn't made any major changes from 8-9 months). Her personality did blossom a ton this month though, with much more laughter and squealing. She has become quite the little ham. My favorite memory from this month was when we went to Jenn and Nate's for "Thanksgiving" and everyone was going around saying something they were thankful for. Each time the group would laugh, Lucy would mimic the laughing right afterward... it was adorable, and everyone thought it was the cutest thing there! And my favorite quote from Ben - "I'm really starting to like playing with her"- hmmm, I guess I'll take care of the babies pre-9months, and he'll deal with them after. :) But in all seriousness, she really has become so much fun to actually play with - we love tickling her and wrestling with her and throwing her in the air and chasing her, she IS a lot of fun.

She also loves to nod her head "yes" and "no" in response to us talking to her (not sure if she knows what this means, or just likes the movement) and still loves to wave hi and bye a lot. She is babbling a lot more now too, with clear mama and dada's mixed in. We're pretty sure she uses mama to get my attention, but not sure if she has associated dada with Ben yet... do we dare say "Mama" is her first word?

She continues to mostly eat finger foods and will only be spoon fed if it's something really tasty. And she now eats just about anything and everything (although we're steering clear of the major allergic foods for now - egg whites, PB, etc). A typical breakfast consists of yogurt/cottage cheese, some cherrios, fruit, toast and/or eggs. Lunch is usually pasta, veggies, chicken, cheese and/or fruit. And dinner is usually a variation of what we are having or something from the above. We finally knocked out the middle of the night feeding, so she's down to four nursing sessions a day and the doctor says over the next couple months we need to work on slowly bringing that down to one nursing by the time she is a year... weird!

Which brings me to sleep - sleep has been mixed this month, the day after I wrote how amazing Lucy was sleeping in her 8 month update she got a cold and started teething and was not sleeping well at all... alas, I forgot that nothing lasts in the life of a baby. Another mom from my Bible study made a good point, whether it's good or bad, you can only expect your current state to last for about 3 weeks... then something is bound to change! The good news is, she's back to sleeping great (for now) and she dropped the middle of the night feeding on her own. She just started sleeping till 7-8am! She does still sometimes wake up, but the doctor recommended soothing her in other ways besides nursing because we know she doesn't really need that 5am feeding anymore.

Her schedule these days is wake around 7-8am (she has been waking about 7am to nurse and then snuggling/sleeping with me till 8am... this is my favorite part of the day), go down and eat breakfast. Play till about 10am, take a 1-2hour nap. Nurse and eat lunch around 12pm. Run errands, or meet friends for lunch (and by friends, I mean Beth and Court... they're the main people we've been meeting up with these past couple months). Home for a 1-2hour nap around 3pm. Nurse and Dinner around 4:30-5:30pm. Play with dad until about 7pm, then bath, story (she is finally somewhat interested in books!!), nursing and songs to prepare for bed (about 7:30-8pm).

We did see the doctor this month and got new stats. Despite all the food this girl eats (which is a ton) she dropped in percentile... the doctor said she wasn't concerned though, as she sees that happen with a lot of babies as they get older an level out.
Head - 17.3in, 52%
Length - 27.8in, 58% (every other visit she has been 90%+, so this was a major change!)
Weight - 18.1lb, 38%

Look at my adorable new hat!

Not sitting in one place... as usual!

Showcasing her two front teeth that are coming in... I think she's got 3-4 coming in right now

Such a happy baby!

Last one, no coat, no hat... just baby

Sunday, December 19, 2010


If I'm ever feeling sad, I think I'll just watch this for a pick me up...

(Lucy laughing while I blow raspberries on her belly)

First Steps!

What an exciting day!

Lucy started getting closer to walking while we were in GC, she'd take one step on her own, but then always fall right away. And she was getting faster at walking holding our hands, but it still seemed like she had a long way to go before walking on her own. Then yesterday, I guess things just clicked all of the sudden... I wasn't expecting it at all! It's amazing to watch the transformation happen, one day putting one foot in front of the other seems too complicated, then the next day it just makes sense to her. I love watching her grow.

She started being able to push herself up off of the ground (not holding on to anything) at the beginning of the day, which was enough excitement for me- then Ben was playing with Lucy in the kitchen and had been counting her steps, when all of the sudden he just kept counting... "1, 2, 3, 4... Jess go get the camera!!!" So I ran upstairs and got the video camera and got some of her first steps on tape:

Yes, we are using puffs to motivate her :)

A few more steps this time...

She is still very cautious about the whole thing, and I think realizes that crawling for right now is a little faster... but I'm sure she'll get the hang of it soon enough and be off running soon!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tree Trimming and Snow!

Now that we are back from Grand Cayman we are in full swing Christmas mode! We usually get our tree and decorate the day after Thanksgiving, but since we left for GC on that day this year, we had to get started right away when we got home. I slowly put decorations up throughout the week, while trying to get our life back in order, and played lots of extra Christmas music to help get me in the mood... The 15 degree weather and snow we had helped bring me back to reality too!

We got our tree this past Saturday, Lucy is only awake for 2-3 hours at a time though, so by the time she woke up from her first nap, nursed, ate and got loaded in the car to get the tree it was almost time for her second nap! So, Ben and I were left to do the decorating without her help... what a slacker.

I let Ben get started with the tree while I whipped us up some hot coco and cookies to help us decorate...

Unfortunately, left unattended, this is what my lovely husband will do... (watch football and wrestle the dog) *sigh*

Somehow we were running low on time again so all we got was one ornament up... Lucy's "Baby's First Christmas" ornament from Katy... a good one to get up :)

Oh well, off to Nanni and Poppi's to help decorate their tree and celebrate Alli's birthday, and a quick picture in Lucy's first snow!

Posing in front of their Christmas tree in adorable coat and hat!

Four generations of Wagner women!

Lucy sitting at the kid table with all her cousins (well, my cousins... so her second cousins?)

Time at the Wagners is always a little exhausting so we took some time to recover back home, and relax by the fire...

Monday, December 13, 2010

Grand Cayman - Turtle Farm

Ok, one final GC post! Like I mentioned before, with 10 days, we were really able to do a lot! One day in the middle of the week, we headed over to the Grand Cayman Turtle Farm. This was another one of my favorites. Katie and Brent had been there before and recommended it, and I was glad we went.

The first turtle pool has the oldest (and thus largest) turtles. You can see they are bigger than Lucy! She was enthralled looking at them. On a side note - on at least 4 different occasions in the GC, people stopped us and said they were shocked when Lucy started moving in her stroller because they thought she was a baby doll (why 2 adults would be pushing around a baby doll, is beyond me). The first time someone said it, I thought, oh, that's sweet... they are saying she's cute LIKE a baby doll, but then after the fourth person, I realized- people really think she is literally a baby doll until she moves. I think it's because of the cheap umbrella stroller we were using, that looked toy-like... I told one lady this and she said... "no, it's her bald head"... haha!

Our baby doll staring the turtles down

Katie and Brent had a "tour guide" show them around the farm and explain things to them when they came before, so Katie, being well informed, acted as our "tour guide" - showing us which turtles we could pick up, and how to stroke their necks so they stayed calm. Isn't this turtle adorable!?!?

Ben with a bigger turtle

Lucy meeting a turtle up close

and wanting to pet it...

There was also a shark aquarium, a place to go snorkeling, a place to swim, a bird atrium, and a restaurant. We stopped by the aquarium, atrium and restaurant... but passed on the swimming and snorkeling.

Nursing sharks in the bottom right corner

Oh, hey mom

Katie feeding a bird, right out of her hand!

Ok, that's the last of it... all in all a wonderful vacation with lots to see and do... thanks again to the Kruithof's for hosting our family!

Grand Cayman - Snorkeling and Hell

A couple other popular things to do in Grand Cayman are snorkeling and scuba diving. We didn't want to go through the hassle of getting scuba certified, but fortunately, Brent had snorkel gear on hand, so we went snorkeling a couple days while in GC. Here are a couple shots from our first day snorkeling...

We went to Eden Rock, a spot Brent heard from some friends was great for snorkeling. He was right! In fact, right when you would get in the water there were hundreds of fish swimming around - some very small colorful fish, and some 2-3 foot huge gray fish... that made me not so excited about getting in!

Again, we sent the boys off to test the waters first... Katie and I hanging out with Lucy on the "beach"... or what is actually a little bit of sand, a couple lawn chairs, and big rocky coast.

I decided to get in, so Katy watched Lucy for us, again! I was so thankful she was willing to watch Lucy while Ben and I tried out some of the touristy activities.

Here we are snorkeling... this is another spot that I'm sure is incredibly crowded when the cruise ships are in, but since we went on a Sunday, it was just us and two of Katie and Brent's friends (Jeremy and Sheena, who are expert divers) out exploring the wildlife! It was nice to avoid all the crowds, but I'll be honest, it made things a little scarier. Ben and I went in by ourselves at first, but got scared when it appeared that the 2-3 foot gray fish began to circle us. I got out and asked Jeremy and Sheena if they wouldn't mind snorkeling with us, to make me feel more comfortable. They agreed, got in with us, and confidently shooed the gray fish away. I guess the fish are so used to people feeding them that they hanging around and swim right up to you expecting food.

The boys after snorkeling...

These are out of order, but I wanted to include a couple pictures from our visit to Hell in this post as well (what a funny sentence!) Another tourist spot is Hell, Grand Cayman, not because there is anything to do there, mostly because it is named Hell. People like to go and send postcards from the Hell Post Office and take pictures... so that's what we did!

We also stopped by the Tortuga Rum Cake factory (another tourist trap) and got to sample lots of rum cake and a little rum. My camera was running out of batteries at this point (can you tell why?) so I didn't get any pictures... oh well!

These were both places I'm glad we visited, to say we've been there... but there really wasn't much to see/do.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Grand Cayman - Boat Day and Stingrays!

Our first full day in Grand Cayman we got to spend out on Katie and Brent's brand new boat. We were so lucky to go out on the boat's maiden voyage with their friends Jen and Nate. The Kruithof's took us to Stingray sandbar, a top tourist spot in Grand Cayman and Rum Point, an amazing beach with fun rum drinks (of course) and relaxing hammocks. Katie and Jen both wrote posts on this as well, so if you want more details... check out their blogs! This was Ben and my favorite thing that we did on the island, we love boating, so that was a blast, and stingray sandbar was an amazing place to get up close to, feed and pet stingrays!

The Kruithof's new boat! (that they went in on with Jen and Nate)

Ben holding Lucy! She zonked once we started going fast!

Katie held Lucy for at least an hour (if not more) while she slept and Ben and I got in with the stingrays... we were so thankful for her!!!

Ben got in with the boys first to get comfortable and make sure these stingrays weren't actually going to attack us (at least that's what I told him to do so that I would feel comfortable getting in later)! Look at him holding that stingray!

I finally got in, but never left Ben's back... I thought I would get more comfortable the longer I was in there, but I definitely didn't! It's just a little unsettling being in the water when 10 huge sea animals are swimming at you and coming up to your chest... something about that just doesn't feel right to me :)

I did eventually pet one and feed one, then I asked been to quickly shuffle his feet back to the boat so I could get out!

Best buds!

After stingray sandbar, we headed to rum point. I could imagine that when the cruise ships are in, this place is packed... but on a Saturday in Grand Cayman, it was not crowded at all and the perfect spot for relaxing! Shallow waters, a beautiful beach, and free hammocks/lounge chairs.

Katie and I right before hoping in...

We got out and swam for a bit in the shallow water...

On the shore, we got some fun island drinks...

And played in the hammocks...

Although one diva was hogging a hammock for most of the time...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Grand Cayman

We had an amazing time in Grand Cayman - visiting great friends, eatting great food, and getting lots of sun! We did a lot of relaxing, but I really feel like I am just now recovering from vacation! With 10 hours of travel and a baby who didn't sleep so well the last couple nights, I really needed a vacation from my vacation! Funny how that works....

Anyway, we were in GC for 10 days, so needless to say I have a ton of pictures, that I'll break up over a couple posts to highlight some of the fun things we did there. You can also read more about our trip on Katie and Brent's Blog. When we booked our trip several months ago, I had major buyers remorse in that I wish we would have planned a trip after Lucy's first birthday for just Ben and I to go see Katie and Brent... going on the trip didn't change my mind, don't get me wrong, Lucy was a really good baby and extremely happy as usual, but the last 4 nights she would not sleep at night unless being rocked in our arms and there were a lot of activities I felt like we had to say no to or leave early because Lucy was getting sleepy/fussy. Oh well... we'll know better next time!

In spite of those feelings, I was super thankful that Katie and Brent were extremely gracious hosts and accomodated our family of 3 as best they could in their 1 bedroom apartment. They let us stay in a studio they had rented out for half of our trip and gave up their bedroom for the other half - 10 days is a long time to put up with house guests, so I am extremely thankful for their generosity!

Highlights from the trip:

So this pictures brings a lot of thoughts to my mind... 1. This was Lucy's first plane ride! Overall she did amazing, she didn't sleep much, but she didn't cry much either, so I was very thankful for that. Apple juice and puffs were my saving grace, I swear that girl drank and ate her body weight on the plane, but it kept her happy! Everyone said, "just nurse her the whole time", I tried this, but unfortunately, Lucy is at the age where nursing only takes about 10 minutes and she is easily distracted... thus apple juice became my best friend. 2. I was exhausted! We woke up at 3am to leave for the airport, making it even more surprising that Lucy didn't sleep. 3. Lucy's little red nose reminded me that right before we left she got a cold and her top two teeth started coming in... exactly what you want before a vacation, right?!?!

We made it! We got to walk out of the plane straight onto the tarmac - how fun is that!?!?

As I mentioned, Katie and Brent were extremely gracious with us, they gave up their bedroom and let us bombard their space with luggage and tons of baby gear... it's a good thing they like us so much :) Due to the tight quarters, we lived out of our suitcases the entire trip... this gave somebody a new toy to play with and climb in...

We spent most of our time at the beach or at the pool. The Kruithof's live less than a 5 minute walk from the beach and the pool is right outside their front door. This was great for us because we could go to the beach for an hour, come back, lay Lucy down, set up the monitor and lay out by the pool while she napped. This made for some relaxing afternoons!

Note the clear skies - we had beautiful weather every day but one... and by that time we needed a break from the sun anyway!

I wanted to get a picture with the cruise ships in the background - Ben and my first visit to GC was on a cruise ship on our honeymoon. It was nice being at the island for a more extended trip this visit because we were able to do and see so many more things than you can fit in the 8 hours the cruise stop gives you. It was also nice to do things in the evenings and on weekends, once the cruise ships had left, everything was much less crowded.

The water in GC is typically very calm and clear, but one day we went to the beach and the waves were enormous! I wouldn't let Lucy go in, but here you can see how big the wave looks compared to Ben...

Lucy watching her daddy and thinking he's crazy...

For meals, we spent about half in and half out. Again, we were thankful to have the Kruithof's as our guide as they had already been to several restaurants and had great recommendations for us and we were thankful that they were ok with us eating breakfast, lunch and some dinners in their home... made the vacation expenses not so bad!

I took this picture because Katie said the sky looked so pretty, but it actually reminded me to post about how we had to feed Lucy. Without a high chair, we had to feed Lucy on our laps for every meal which was not only a little time consuming... it was also a little messy! Fortunately there were lots of birds and lizards that picked up all the residue (I think!)

Some pictures from our other meals...

We went to Hagandaaz one night to get their buy 2 get 1 free scoop deal.

"Thanksgiving" at Jenn and Nate's house

I guess the sign does all the explaining here...

Katie and Brent watched Lucy one night while we went out on a date. The restaurant pictures I took were too dark, but I wanted to point out that Ben did some driving on the island - all on the other side of the road! He did really well... didn't hit anyone or anything!

Those are the highlights of our trip- all in all a great time, and we miss the Kruithof's already! Crazy to think we might not see them for another year and a half!