Saturday, December 5, 2015

19 Months


Another month, another trip ;) Once we got started traveling again in July, for the first time since Audra was born, we just kept going. Four hours seems to be the upper limit of what we're willing to drive right now (timed just so that we're leaving late morning, stopping for lunch, and then the girls are getting a post-lunch nap so they're well-rested by time we reach our destination), which, conveniently, is as far as our friends live away from us in Pennsylvania. So we went up to visit them in September, which was a really nice trip. Audra did very well in the car both ways, although she did have some trouble on the way up as we were going through the mountains. So she cried then from her ears popping, which was a bit upsetting that she just had to suffer through it. There wasn't a whole lot else we could do besides shoving various food and drinks at her to try to get her to swallow, which she wasn't interested in doing, given how much her ears were bothering her.

Maybe it helped to be in a different environment and have all new stuff (and people!) to entertain her, but it was a surprisingly scream-free weekend on Audra's part :) She only got really upset once, when she snuck away from where I was sitting in the living room and climbed the stairs up to the loft herself, then got super upset when she realized she could see me from the loft but then couldn't get to me. Silly girl.
[Ryan's good save]

We drove up on Friday and stayed until Sunday morning, so Saturday was our only full day there. We spent a good part of Saturday at a beach, though, which seemed to be all the girls could have hoped for in life, so it worked out well ;) Audra contented herself with splashing in the water and playing with the sand... and ditching us when we weren't giving her all the food she demanded and trying to ingratiate herself with other families who had more interesting food. Given how closely she normally stays to me, it was pretty unusual that she was actually trying to evade me when I went to collect her, but I guess she was properly motivated ;)

The other big news from Audra's 19th month, besides her first trip to Pennsylvania? She slept through the night. At long last, she finally did it, showing that our patience in waiting for her to sleep longer on her own volition (without pushing it along by sleep training) was maybe not entirely misplaced ;) We're still bed-sharing, so who knows how much my presence helped her resettle, but she went from 9:30pm-6:30am without any overt support from me. I'm fine with still staying with her, in case my presence can serve as a safety net of sorts for her as her sleep naturally matures, but this was a nice bit of encouragement for me :)

Our sleeping arrangement is working just fine anyway, with my current plan being that I'll start leaving her at night when she's more consistently sleeping through the night (or only waking once), since otherwise it's just not worth it to me to lose out on sleep by having to get up and go to her at night (and I also realize she'd probably sleep through the night better if I night-weaned, but given that I work all day and nighttime has turned into our cherished bonding time, I'm not currently willing to do that). It's just so much easier for me to get back to sleep if I don't have to get up, although even now I sometimes have nights where I can't get back to sleep after she wakes overnight, so I'm awake for the day at 4am :( Anyway, Josie's sleep really improved at 18 months, then more at 2 years, then more at 2.5 years, which I believe is sort of how the big developmental leaps track at this age anyway, so that's what I've been banking on for when Audra would start sleeping better. So hopefully in another 6 months or so she'll sleep through the night again, since she hasn't done it again since ;)

Some other excitement for the month was that Audra started to actually cooperate with us on occasion ;) She has some strong opinions on things, and she hasn't agreed with pretty much anything we've asked her to do that she didn't already want to do before, so this was very exciting for us. For example, she was turned around standing in her car seat (hugging the headrest in front of her), and I asked her a few times to turn back around and sit down and... she actually did it. Whoa.

Audra is still adding lots of new words (although not quite at the breakneck pace she was doing last month), so some of the words she learned in September were Google, cold, open, neigh, rock, pull, push, down. She also has started putting together two-word phrases, like "sock off!" and "apple eat". She maybe said "I do", and said something that certainly sounded like "I want my book!" but I have to imagine that she's not quite that advanced yet :)

[Happy dancing]

The girls have actually played together now without it inevitably ending in tears, as it usually does, since Audra likes to pull Josie's hair, and Josie likes to take things from Audra and then hold them out of her reach. They played well together on the various beds as I was trying to make them, since they like it when I snap the sheets over their heads (and, truth be told, I think they like how I flustered I got about it, because I was SO IRRITATED that I couldn't just make a bed in a peace, and yet I kept laughing through my irritation because they were having so much fun). Audra also loves it when Josie drives them around in her tractor, so Audra will run right over to it and buckle herself in, patiently waiting for Josie to join her ;)

Audra likes to do whatever Josie does, so I shouldn't have been surprised that after Josie asked for a (temporary) tattoo on her belly, Audra immediately pulled her shirt up and slapped her belly until I gave her one too ;) And after months of trying to copy Josie, Audra was finally successful in learning to walk up our legs and flip over. She loved it, yelling "more" and "mine" (and throwing herself down and crying) whenever Josie had a turn, although it seemed she was starting to figure out that taking turns meant that she would get to do it again after Josie, and therefore temper tantrums were not required to ensure she'd get another shot ;)

[Josie wears headbands, therefore Audra wears Josie's headbands too ;]

I took Audra to the pediatrician since she finally seemed well enough to get her MMR vaccine... except it turned out she had an ear infection. This was a complete surprise to me, since normally it's pretty obvious when her ears are bothering her, but she had had only a mild uptick in fussiness the preceding few days. Odd. Anyway, so her doctor agreed that we could wait a few days before starting antibiotics, so I promptly went home and started doing garlic mullein oil drops in her ears (for the bacteria and to ease any pain) and massage around her ears (to help the fluid drain) the multiple times a day... and at our follow-up visit a few days later, her doctor was pleased to see that the infection cleared on its own ;) Audra still had some fluid remaining in both ears, which apparently can take 2-3 weeks to drain, so I'm still keeping an eye on that with our otoscope, but I do like it that we've been able to avoid antibiotics (and the GI distress that usually accompanies it) several times now with lower-impact remedies.

Miscellaneous cuteness:
[Best hat ever]

[Sitting on the chair like a big girl]

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