Isaac Debris

Interrupting the Berlin with Baby series to give a real-time post about baby's first hurricane (and mommy and daddy's first hurricane too!).

We survived Hurricane Isaac pretty much unscathed. We had a bit of debris/leaves/branches around and were without power for ~27 hours (10 am Wednesday until 1 pm Thursday). I'm not sure how we got so lucky to get power back so quickly, but I'm definitely grateful. It allowed me to keep all my breast milk stash (it all stayed rock hard frozen).

The garden never stood a chance ...
but only the cucumber plants were still living.
While we were in Berlin the zucchini completely disappeared/
died and the tomatoes never sprouted at all. Better luck next year?
The banana trees and this ginger (?) plant were pretty beaten down.
If I hadn't been so freaked by the possibility of days/weeks of no power I would have taken some video of the swaying trees and wind. I didn't do it though. Shawn said "next time." Perish the thought.

The storm itself was not scary. Last night's "trailer" thunderstorm was louder and kept me awake more than the hurricane did (it was the no AC heat and stickiness that kept me awake on Wednesday night). There was definitely a lot of rain and wind, but we were super lucky. Everything is OK here.

Berlin with Baby: Eating Alone

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

20120817_2_Newtoy_smAugust 17 -- Today I put on my big girl pants and sat in a restaurant alone – with Jane of course – and ordered mostly in German. It was an outdoor café and I had milchkaffee (YUM) and broccoli & ham strudel (meh). It wasn’t as bad as I thought, and I really should have done it every day.

In my defense I was trying to game Jane’s moods and not make her have to sit in her stroller too much – or have to try to balance her while eating myself. Today she did just fine though. But most days for lunch I ate a sandwich on the go – either purchased for a couple Euros or made at the apartment.

20120817_1_Sand_smWe also found a spielplatz (playground). It was for older kids, but she had a good time watching other kids play. I put her in the sand and she wasn’t a fan. We went to a toy store and she picked out a toy – really the first time I know of that she expressed an opinion. Although maybe she was just grabbing for the nearest colorful thing? But there were lots of colorful things so who knows.

Berlin with Baby: Olympia 2012

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

August 16 -- We're not watching too much TV while we here, mostly because we wouldn't understand any of it (although I'm fairly certain if I watched a dubbed version of The Closer I could probably figure it out ... wonder how they convey her Southern accent since it's a running theme ... I digress).

But one thing I did watch after Jane went to sleep every night last week was the Olympics (or as its known here Olympia). With the TV (which is much bigger than our TV at home) muted I could watch the diving and track & field in real time. I got to see more of the German athletes than I normally would have and got to see the American women win their 4x100 in record time plus most of the Usain Bolt wins. I tried to stream the USA-Spain gold medal basketball game but my computer doesn't have the power in it anymore, plus we have limited daily internet so it was a no go.

Another plus: no commercials. It was aired on their government station, I guess. Presumably the PBS of Germany? In any case it was GREAT not to be bombarded with ads for McDonald's (although you see plenty of those around here) and other Olympic sponsors. I did miss the athletes' stories, which is something I think NBC did OK with.

I watched about half of the closing ceremonies, missing the Spice Girls because it got too late. I didn't have the mute on for that because other than the commentators everything about the show was in English.

I actually hear quite a bit of English in the streets here. At first I wanted to be all "EFF YEAH, ENGLISH!" But now it's a little less exciting, and I'm a LOT more tired. So I just plod on. 

I'm still not comfortable conversing in German, and I'm not sure which is more offensive to Germans: speaking terrible German or assuming that everyone speaks English. Also, German is a little scary when it's being spoken at a rapid fire pace. I wonder if I'll miss it once we're back in the land of the free and the home of the brave?

Jane doesn't mind what language you speak! (Shoes on the wrong feet again -- d'oh!)

Berlin with Baby: Legoland and Aching Legs

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

August 15 -- We didn’t actually go to the Legoland Discovery Center because it’s for older kids and is kind of expensive. But we did go to Potsdamer Platz and saw this cool giraffe Lego creation.

(I couldn’t get the whole giraffe in the photo without walking too far away from Jane, hence the head in a separate image … also, how cool would it be if that guy were wearing a “tag me on Facebook” shirt? Then I’d probably post this on there. HA)

My legs are killing me. I’ve been carrying Jane around on my back and front – the only real way to get around the subway system here. There really aren’t consistent elevators or escalators at all stations I want to go to (including Eisenacher Strasse, where I went to a kids second-hand store, Trollby). I know if I lived in a city that I’d adjust AND that I wouldn’t be trekking so far every day.

To add to the fun Jane is refusing to nap except for cat naps in the Ergo. Ugh.

Berlin with Baby: German History Museum

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

August 14 -- Jane and I went to another museum today, the German History Museum. I carried her on my back on the way there and then she rode in my front for most of the museum. I had to check the diaper bag at the coatroom, but that was OK/we didn't have a blowout until we got back to the apartment.

This museum was a "don't miss" site in my guidebook, and he suggested the audioguide, which I also did. Jane did REALLY well again, and we had a good time, although my feet are killing me. She's got to weigh 25 pounds if she weighs an ounce!

Two ideas I've had with all this tourist-ing:

1) iTunes walking tours and guides to museums, especially in various languages. It turns out there is a City Guide app to Berlin for $5, but at the end of my trip I don't think it's worth it. Something similar for the bus tour and/or river boat cruise would be good too.

2) Tag me on Facebook T-shirts. This stems from an idea I've had for ages -- writing a story about two people who used to know each other, and one appears in the background of vacation snapshots of someone the second person knows. I don't know the rest of the story, but it would just be an idea to get the story started I guess -- reigniting a romance or friendship/helping people find their way back to each other.  Anyway, in this era of social media wearing your Facebook name on a T-shirt that also asks to be tagged could be fun -- then you'd be connected online with the people you were with at the museum on a given day in time. Stupid and unworkable, but I still thought about it. (And thought it was genius for a bit...)

Ready for site seeing!

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Berlin with Baby: Feet on Vacation

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

August 14 -- Traditionally I take pictures of my feet on vacation, usually on a beach and last year in Vancouver on a sky-ride up a mountain. This year's shots are a little less dramatic, although my feet have walked MILES AND MILES (rather kilometers and kilometers) around this city.

Jane's feet in shoes from Megan (they finally fit!) ... although I think I have them on the wrong feet in this picture.

My feet in our apartment in my new Birkenstocks - purple, comfy and cheaper than I could buy them in the states. Also note the detritus -- Jane's favorite playthings are literally TRASH! And how cute are her PJs? Old Navy 12-18 months -- purple and an elephant on the front...

Berlin with Baby: Translations

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

August 13 – Our second week begins, and despite 3 years of high school German and one of college I feel as lacking for communication as Jane.

Of course I’m saved by the fact that Berlin is a big city full of people more educated than me, many of whom speak English. But that doesn’t keep me from feeling like a nincompoop in all situations requiring the least bit of Deutsch.

I sputter through payment transactions and use single words: Visa? Danke. No chatting. Shawn tells me I’m impolite and cold to cashiers at home sometimes, and I try to work on it. But here I have no choice!

Despite the hassles, we did see some neat graffiti, like this Jane tag.

Today was a peak of embarrassment (nadir?) in that I walked a mile to a kindercafe and was too awkward to go in and leave my stroller outside as seemed to be the protocol.

(In fact one woman left her sleeping baby outside in its stroller – after speaking to her friend inside – and then walked off entirely … OMG! I’m way too helicopter-y for that, especially in this foreign city!)

It’s really most embarrassing, the wasted opportunity to do something fun for Jane. But what is this blog but a place to chronicle my embarrassments? Ugh.

Also on the way to the kindercafe (from a toy store, which was less of a bust despite it not taking credit cards) I knocked a bike over onto a parked car with the stroller. (Some of the sidewalks are very narrow, especially with the addition of café tables and chairs.)

The owner of the bike came immediately and said in English that it was OK as she helped me pick up the bike. The guy who owned the car came across the street to yell at us both in German (Mein Auto!) and give us scathing dirty looks. He walked off when he realized there wasn’t any real damage – and that neither of us seemed to be able to fight him in German. Also, I think scratches are to be expected with street parking in a city.

I apologized in German (at least I think I did – who knows what I actually said in my panicked state). The owner of the bike, an American, laughed as the car owner walked away: “That’s a German. Don’t worry about it.” Near tears I said “American” and kept going. Clearly even my English communication skills have been dampened by this trip.

Berlin with Baby: Hairstyles

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.


Can you believe this hair? It’s so long and in this sunshine has a real red tint. Shawn and I each have a red-haired parent, so it isn’t unexpected. But I marvel at it every time it makes itself obvious. (This is on a boat tour we did on the Spree River.)


When in Germany, wear braids? I decided to give it a try to see if a) I could get her to sit still long enough and b) if her hair was really long enough for it. Both were tough, but we got a mini braid going. The front part of her hair is still too short to be pulled back except with clips (which are stressful choking hazards … much like the elastic at the end of this braid).

Berlin with Baby: Smoke, Locks and Flea Market

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

I can’t believe how many people smoke here – and with an abandon we don’t see in the States much anymore. Have these people not heard of lung cancer, or second hand smoke dangers?

Shawn's colleague told us what all the locks we've seen on the bridges mean: LOVE. Kinda hokey, but apparently couples will have a lock engraved (or in some cases scribble on it with marker) and put it on a bridge. Makes me wish I had one with Mari & Shawn engraved on it!

August 12 -- Today we went to a flea market and it was JAM PACKED with people. We took the stroller, which was ill-advised, and after shouldering through a few of the aisles we finally gave in and parked outside of the market. We ate currywurst from a stand (tasty!) and Jane got to play with a German baby who was also seeking refuge from the crowds.

Shawn and I each took a turn going back into the market (him mostly to buy food and me to shop a bit), but even without the baby it was just too crowded to do much shopping (not to mention the whole language barrier thing, which still makes my stomach hurt).

A side aisle where we had a chance to browse these wares.
(I need to work on my horizon leveling in photos like woah)

Berlin with Baby: Jane’s First Museum

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

August 11 -- Jane had her first museum experience today – the Pergamon Museum. It has a lot of ancient stone work. I would take her to a WWII museum, and I still might check out the German History museum next week. We’ll see how it goes.


Berlin with Baby: We All Fall Down

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

August 10 – Jane took a tumble yesterday – climbing on the table and TV shelf. I thought she’d hit her teeth, but instead it was the bridge of her nose. There was no gushing blood, just a little scrape. Still scary. 

Enough for some tears but not enough to bother her today (or keep her from trying to climb some more).


Jeans from Gingie (size 2T … what the?!) and shoes from Megan.

Cruising Jane: A GIF

There's a whole lot more walking going on now too -- but still while holding onto things.

Berlin with Baby: Shopping

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

August 9 – Today Jane and I took our first solo trip on Berlin’s subway system. S2 from Oranienburgerstrasse to Potsdamer Platz, transfer to U2 to Wittenburgplatz. Destination: KaDeWe, the largest department store on the continent and second only to Harrah’s in London for largest in Europe.

kadeweWe took the stroller, but navigated the subway with the Ergo and Jane strapped on my back. I had a little trouble figuring out the transfer – mostly because the U and S systems weren’t in the same building.

When we made it to the store I first made a stop at a big post office and bought some postcard stamps. I consulted my phrase book, got in the correct line and completed the transaction almost entirely in German. Then we went into the store and I plopped Jane back into her stroller.

AmpelmännchenThe department store is huge, but it didn’t feel as big as Macy’s in Herald Square. I’ve been to Harrah’s too, but not as often as Macy’s so not sure I can compare. We walked past the baby clothes (too chic for our tastes) and found the gourmet food floor. We bought chocolate souvenirs and later some Ampelmännchen souvenirs.

The trip back to the guest house was pretty easy too – Jane rode in the Ergo on my front and fell asleep just as we rounded the corner back to Ziegelstrasse. Juggling a baby, stroller and packages is no joke. I’m sure I couldn’t do this full time. It’s going to be a miracle if I survive these two weeks intact.

Berlin with Baby: Bus Tour

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

20120808_2_smAugust 8 – SOMEONE mostly slept while we were on a sight-seeing bus tour, but that was OK since she didn’t have to pay and it gave me more time to listen and look around.

I was able to take my stroller on board, and the driver stowed it for me (it folds down to almost nothing, but they wouldn’t let it sit in the seat with me). I trusted that it would still be there when we were ready to get off – and it was!

20120808_3_SleeponBus_smWe rode up top, and no one sat with us even when the top was mostly full. There were glass windows protecting us, so there was no danger of falling out – but Jane stayed in the front-carry Ergo anyway, which made for a good place to sleep. It was also cool enough that she got to wear her sparkly hooded sweater!

I had a hard time deciphering the various websites of the bus tour companies, and in the end I picked the one-day option (since I already have a regular subway transit ticket for the next week). I spoke to the street side employee and made sure it was a tour with a live guide speaking English (as per my Rick Steve’s Berlin tour guide book suggestion).

The tour guide said everything in German then English, and I found I could understand some of the simple German things. He didn’t add much color commentary though, so it was mostly what I could have read in a guide book.
Here are some of the non-Jane pictures I took:

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Berlin with Baby: Jetlag

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

20120805_2_smAugust 8--Think your baby has trouble sleeping? Try giving her jetlag and then see how it goes.

Jane is typically a pretty good sleeper. And even though she stopped sleeping through the night we still had a general routine and could count on some sleep and some time to ourselves in the evenings. Coming to Germany has put an end to everything – so far – and made us question our decision to cart our bambino overseas!

Our first night wasn’t so bad because we were all exhausted. Shawn was able to get Jane to sleep and then we all slept for a few hours. We woke up for dinner and then had a pretty easy time going back to sleep around 8 p.m. Berlin time (1 p.m. Baton Rouge time).

Night #2 was quite a change. We kept Jane out later than we should – about 8 p.m. – having coffee with one of Shawn’s colleagues. It took HOURS to get her to go to sleep, even while Shawn and I were exhausted ourselves and trying to shake our own jetlag. She had never been that upset over sleeping, so I think it was mostly the cortisol and other stress hormones keeping her from drifting off. And even when she would she would awake soon after screaming.

Oh me.

Night #3 was still rough, but not as much screaming. She just stayed awake and played for several hours. We didn’t sleep so late after that, so hopefully we’re more on the Berlin time schedule.

Berlin with Baby: Guesthouse

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

August 7 -- We’re staying in a guesthouse rather than a hotel, and it’s AMAZING. We have a small kitchen, a sitting room for playing and PRIVACY. No one cares if I stay in the apartment all day long if I want. I don’t have to arrange my schedule around housekeeping (first world travel problems, right?). I definitely think this is the way to go for family travel.

We also have access to laundry, which seems cheaper than at hostels or a laundromat – plus it’s right across the hall from our apartment!

The only bummer is that there's no bathtub for Jane, so she's had to survive showers with Mama. If we'd known we could have brought a small blow up tub to put in the floor of the shower. I haven't seen anything like that for sale around here though. None of the sinks are big enough either. She'd rather be dirty anyway ... 


Affiliate link used for tub.

Berlin with Baby: Getting There

Note: This series, Berlin with Baby, is being written in real time to be published upon our return to the United States.

iPod 057August 4 & 5 -- Preparing to travel overseas with a baby gave me plenty of reasons to indulge in my love of list making. Things to pack and things to buy on top of lists of souvenirs to buy and post cards to send.

In the end nothing could have prepared me for the weariness of travel – overnight travel switching time zones by 7 hours on three planes (to Atlanta, to Paris, to Berlin).

Our friend Katie gave us a ride to the airport in Baton Rouge – we picked her up so we didn’t have to hassle with transferring a car seat (or adding to our already staggering luggage count). We are grateful for the big favor – vielen dank!

We arrived at the airport with plenty of time to spare, which we needed because there was an issue at the counter with issuing Jane’s ticket. In the end we got it, but it cut into our lunch time a bit. After the easy security where everyone ooohed over Jane (“man killer already, I see”) we were able to eat in the gross little café in the BR airport – overpriced ham and cheese sandwiches. It actually worked out OK for the timing.

Jane did well on the first flight to Atlanta. She and I were in a window seat, and she was interested in watching as we flew up away from her hometown. I thought she would sleep but she didn’t.

iPod 063We had a long enough layover in Atlanta and didn’t have any trouble finding our gate. Jane was able to crawl around and look out the windows, and I even got one last decaf iced Americano with skim before we boarded for the long flight. Shawn was able to get her to have a short nap too.

We had to check our stroller at the gate in Atlanta, only to find out that it would be checked through to Berlin (and since we didn’t use it in Baton Rouge or Atlanta we could have just checked it with our baggage instead of carting it through security). So no picking it up in Paris, for what we knew would be a wild ride at Chuck Doo-Gull airport. (Really Charles de Gaul)

iPod 074We requested bulkhead seats, and the request was granted, which was good because it gave us more room at our feet for Jane and the addition of a baby bed. It mostly served as toy and blanket storage because Jane was almost too big for it and almost too heavy (22 lb. max). It also could hold a tray of food so we could take turns eating.

Because there was no storage at our feet we had to choose our bag of tricks carefully. I had toys and books for Jane, but only a few could be out and the rest stored above in our bags. It was possible to get things out of the overhead, but less than ideal. We had a free seat next to us that also allowed for overflow storage, and we hope for the same for our return.

Jane also got her own seatbelt that attached to mine, so that was pretty cool. One of my coworkers was guilt tripping me about flying with a lap baby (unsafe! everything in the plane is strapped down EXCEPT your baby!), so the belt made me feel a little better about it, I guess.

Shawn and I took turns holding Jane, and we were each able to get her to sleep once. All together she probably slept 3 hours of the 8+ hour flight, but I didn’t sleep at all.

The Paris airport was as expected a nightmare. We’re convinced it was engineered in the least logical way possible. I also think it must be the way Parisian women stay thin… We had to walk quite a bit – from one terminal to another – and then once we got to our gate we were bussed back in the direction we had come to actually get on the plane.

Customs was a breeze, as we were allowed the priority access line because of Jane. However the regular line wasn’t that long either, I think because it was a Sunday morning. The rest of the airport was pretty crowded though. And it was surprisingly dingy on top of its illogical layout.

Silver lining: for the most part the employees at the airport were helpful, although some of the signs were outdated or flat out wrong (ticketing meant information only in one case, and baggage drop off only meant ticketing in another!). There were also a lot of stairs – up and down – so I was glad we didn’t have the stroller for that. But nothing was handicap accessible. One man on our flight had bad legs and was using a cane. It took him quite a while to make his way. I guess there isn’t a corresponding Americans with Disabilities Act in the EU.

We weren’t seated together on the flight from Paris to Berlin, but we did find someone who spoke English who agreed to switch, very kindly. Jane slept hard on this flight, waking up a couple times to cry when she realized we were still in transit. It wasn’t too bad though, and the man sitting next to me was quite taken with her (of course!) and spoke to her in French.

We landed in Berlin, and took the bus to the terminal. Our baggage came right away, but we had to wait around to see if perhaps the stroller would make it. Shawn realized when we were in Paris that the guy at gate check in Atlanta had written down the wrong flight from Paris.

Shawn’s colleague Antoine met us as we left the baggage claim area, and was very kind. He had bought cell phones for us to use while we’re here (since we won’t be together most of the time and might need to communicate). And he helped us getting the tickets for the bus and subway. It would have taken us ages to navigate the computer screen, since it was all in German and we wouldn’t have known what we needed even if it were in English!

I wasn’t my sweetest self after the long travel, and I wanted the stroller, since my arms and back were aching from carrying Jane and my backpack (although I did have her strapped in the Moby). We finally found the lost luggage area, and while Shawn and Antoine chatted about work and setting up the cell phones I sat down to wait. A woman saw us with the baby and let us jump the line. She was very kind and spoke excellent English, so explaining our plight was no problem. She saw the stroller was still in Paris, and we made arrangements for it to be delivered to the guest house, which it was Sunday evening.

We woke up around 7 a.m. on Saturday before we left, and even though we took our time getting up and around by the time we finally made it to the guest house in Berlin around 2 p.m. on Sunday, I had been awake for 24 hours. Even in Jane’s earliest days I don’t remember feeling as crazy tired – we would still get an hour or two of sleep at a time and were never walking, walking, walking or sitting in small cramped seats. My vision was starting to play tricks on me and the ground seemed to wobble, as if I were on a ship. Shawn was better able to keep it together and navigate – with the help of his colleague.

Jane fell asleep again in her Moby on the bus ride and stayed asleep during her first subway ride. When we finally made it to our room she was EXCITED to no longer be in transit. She shrieked and climbed on us while we rested. Shawn got her to sleep and we all slept for a few hours before finding dinner.

After we ate we were able to stay up until 8 p.m. We woke up in the night once with Jane and had a little trouble falling back asleep, but once we did slept through until 8 a.m. So hopefully it won’t be too hard to be fully in this time zone. Jane seems to be adjusting so far and just woke up from a nap as I write this.

Berlin with Baby

Hello from Deutschland!

Shawn had a research opportunity in Berlin this month, so Jane and I came along for the fun. We should be back in the United States by the time this publishes.

During our two week stay I've written at least one blog post per day to document our trip and hopefully provide tips for others thinking of traveling to Berlin with or without a baby. (My vote would be without, but that may be my aching back and legs talking ... more on that later.)

I decided not to publish them/live blog to give me a chance to edit and re-consider the posts ... and so as not to advertise the fact that we're abroad. I know that's patently ridiculous, as everyone who reads my blog actually knows we're away, but I'm still paranoid like that.

In any case there will be loads of new content on the blog for the next two weeks, and I hope it proves useful to someone and entertaining to my friends and family.

Jane on a plane (one of three to get to Berlin)
Jane on a bus (site seeing, but we also took a bus from the airport)
Jane in a subway station (S-Bahn)
Jane on the subway (U-Bahn)
Jane on a boat


(There's a top one coming in too, but I haven't managed to get a picture of it ... YET.)

Some Books Jane Loves at 9 Months

Numbers, Colors, Shapes board book
Jane's very attached to this book, and while I am not always 100% with them on the quality of layout (example: 5 strawberries are illustrated with 3 of the strawberries that are exactly the same just cut and pasted!), it's a good simple book with colorful pictures and more than just numbers, colors and shapes -- also a few emotions, some opposites (Jane's favorite is UP/DOWN) and schedules. I think we'll be getting a few more of these books or at least adding some to our Amazon wish list.

Jane in her City Mini stroller (2011 version in orange/grey) with the Numbers, Colors, Shapes book and her signature "you are my people" hand gesture. For travel we bought the stroller carrying case, which is good but not as good as the one we saw parents use several years ago when we were traveling back to NYC -- their carrying case had individual pockets for the wheels, but this newer version cheaps out and doesn't have that.

I Love You Through and Through
A gift from Coretta. I'm pretty sure it's MY favorite book of Jane's (hence making this list). It's just a sweet story, and if I weren't a stickler for copyright I'd probably make a Jane version with pictures of all the things I love about her to match the book (happy side, sad side, fingers/toes, ears/nose, hair/eyes, etc.).

My Go To Bed Book
We picked this up at a garage sale for 50 cents. It's a 50s-era story about a kid going to bed. It's part of our night-time routine, along with Llama, Llama Nighty Night (a gift from Aunt B) and Good Night, I Love You (illustrated by the same person as I Love You Through and Through, so when I saw it at Target I bought it!). I can recite all three of these from memory.

Disclosure: Amazon affiliate links used throughout.

Edit: Update, Jane loves her Numbers, Colors, Shapes book so much that she ATE the corner of the pink page. GROSS... And should be expected, as she's already cut three teeth and more are surely on the way.

9 Months In, 9 Months Out

Hey, hey, Jane is nine months old today!

Time sure flies when you're having fun, and even when it's hard we're still having amazing fun.

She can do so many things: crawling, standing, cruising, picking up things. Clapping and rolling her hands (to throw the patty cake in the pan), and turning pages of books.

I don't have her recent stats yet, although I will in a couple weeks when we go to her nine-month well baby check up. She's still big though (as my shoulders and arms can attest) and wears 12-18 month clothes and PJs. She's just started wearing shoes, in preparation for walking,

Jane has two teeth that have come in on the bottom -- little bunny teeth. She's chewing on everything so I'm sure there are more to come.

We're still nursing, and she's eating a variety of pureed fruits and veggies a couple times a day. She's tried mummums and been OK about them. I gave her an organic baby cookie that she didn't have strong feelings about either way.

She's a happy, healthy amazing baby. Shawn and I are so lucky.

Love this baby one!

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