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Ainsley update

Family

An Ainsley Update

January 29, 2016

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I realized I talk about motherhood in a general sense quite frequently, but I rarely talk about Ainsley specifically. As she grows and becomes her own little person, I’ve been thinking a lot about her privacy and how much or little to share online. There is a delicate balance to strike, that’s for certain, but I am so thankful for each and every one of you who prayed for her and want you to share in the JOY that she brings to our lives.

I’m sure that all parents say this, but Ainsley is a very special baby. There is no other way to say it, but this kid radiates joy wherever she goes. Her personality is bright, fearless and bursting with energy. She is go-go-go all the time and getting a photo of her sitting still took at least 50 tries. How did I get her to smile in that photo above? I roared in her face like a lion. Ha! She loves loud, rough and rambunctious play, like going “way back” (aka upside down), being on dad’s shoulders, bouncing with dad on the bed and flying around the room Superman-style.

The last couple months she has shown a lot of interest in balls – tennis balls, basketballs, Pippa’s toy balls, etc. Joe already has high hopes she will be an athlete, but her no-so-athletic mother is trying to temper his hopes and enthusiasm in case she gets her mom’s genes.

We read to her constantly, and she’s developing a pretty good attention span most of the time. She’s babbling a lot these days, but I don’t think she really understands what she is saying. She says “dada” and “mama” a lot and her new word/sound is “nuh” which she says all the time. I’ll walk around the house with her, talking to her as we go, and she just responds with “nuh” again and again. Let’s hope this isn’t a precursor to “no!” She also does a lot of loud, happy yelling, which is sometimes funny and other times not so funny, like when we are out in public.

Ainsley still wakes up once in the early morning hours, around 4 or 5 am. She used to take a bottle and go back to sleep, but the last few weeks we’ve just been giving her a little water. I’m not sure why she does this little wake-up, since she is obviously not hungry, but our new routine is a little bit of water in a sippy or bottle, then she rolls over and lays her head on my chest with her eyes open. She just lays there, soaking in the cuddles, until I set her back down and she goes right back to sleep. It’s really really precious. And dare I say I sort of love our little pre-dawn routine? She isn’t a very cuddly baby, so I’ll take my cuddles when I can get them.

When she turns 1 year old next month (what? where did the time go?) we will have to have a scan of her spine and a follow-up optometry appointment as a routine part of her pediatric follow-up for some of the issues she was born with. We have no real reason to believe that it will be anything but good news, but I’ll be happy to have those tests done with and in the past as soon as possible. Prayers for a smooth process and good results would be appreciated!

Lastly, I feel like I need to say a giant “THANK YOU” to all of you out there reading who have followed this story of ours, prayed for our baby, cared for our family and encouraged us (particularly me!) along the way. I’ve met so many people this last year who have told me they’ve prayed for us and our sweet baby, and it brings me to tears every single time. I look at Ainsley and thank God for the gift that she is, and the sheer miracle of her presence. We’re humbled and thankful daily, and blessed to be able to share her and her updates with you all. #sappymom

Madison

Family

Ainsley Update: 8 Months

November 5, 2015

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I have pretty much fallen off the monthly update bandwagon completely, but since I talk a lot about motherhood and Ainsley, I thought it was time to give a little update. Although I don’t think I’ll resume monthly updates, my plan is to check in from time to time with all things Ainsley.

Development
Ainsley has been doing so many new things lately! She is now confidently crawling around the house (she started crawling about a month ago) and pulling up on everything in sight. She isn’t quite coordinated enough for me to leave her unsupervised and has an affinity for the corners of tables and hard surfaces, which makes her momma nervous.

She is also making a lot more noise. No words to speak of, but lots of “mama” and “dada” and “baba” without any real understanding of what she is saying. I’m trying to claim that she knows what “mama” means, but Joe strongly disagrees!

Health Concerns
I’ve talked a little about how Ainsley was born with a medical issue that required her to have surgery when she was 8 weeks old. Her diagnosis (which we’ve chosen not to disclose for Ainsley’s privacy) required us to do a series of follow-up tests and exams over the first year of her life. Thankfully, everything has gone as well as we could have hoped, and it appears that aside from the surgery she had to correct her lip gap and ear tags, we don’t anticipate Ainsley having any other issues! It’s an extreme answer to prayers, as we went from doctor to doctor having her checked out. They said if she had not had the small gap in her lip, she would probably have never been diagnosed because she shows no other symptoms. What a blessing it is to have such a skilled and competent medical team at Children’s Hospital and Clinics of Minneapolis.

Sleeping
Ainsley is doing really well. She goes to bed around 7:30 and sleeps anywhere between 10 and 12 hours with no wakings. If she wakes up after 10 hours, I’ll feed her a bottle and she goes back to sleep for 2 more. Everyone in the house is feeling well-rested these days.

Eating
Ainsley is eating 4 bottles a day, usually 6 to 8 oz each. We’ve also started to make a more consistent effort to feed her around mealtimes, so she is eating food 3 times a day, in addition to plenty of Cheerios, which seem to be her new favorite. Bonus? They’re way cheaper than the puffs we had been buying! She has decided lately that she isn’t all that into baby food and would prefer to eat whatever is on our plates.

Dogs
Pippa continues to be Ainsley’s favorite play toy. She pulls on Pippa’s tail and covers her in drool, and we’re always trying to keep Pippa from licking Ainsley’s face. It’s so cute to see them together and Pippa couldn’t be more patient! Nutmeg, on the other hand, steers clear from Ainsley. She isn’t hostile to Ainsley in any way, but since she is older you can tell she has less interest in being around a loud, grabby baby. Ainsley actually LOVES Nutmeg and gets super excited every time Nutmeg is around, which is a testament to playing “hard to get” I guess!

Mom + Dad
We are having SO much fun with this little girl. Every day seems to get better and better, and we keep talking about trying to find a way to stop time. Anyone figured that out yet? Joe and I have both had some travel on our schedules this fall. I took a girls grip to Indy two months ago, and a work trip to New York as well. Joe has traveled all over for work, so we’re both getting used to spending a little time away from Ainsley. Hoping to take our first trip as a couple without baby early next year!

Madison