September 12, 2005

18-Month Checkup

Dorothy had her 18-month check-up this morning, and everything looks good. For the record, her weight was 26 lbs. 15oz, and her height was 33 inches. So she's still bouncing around the 75th to 90th percentile. Oh, and her head diameter was 19.25 centimeters.

They asked us if she knows 20 words. We replied that she knows almost that many animals. Dog, cat, bear, deer, bird, owl, otter, frog, giraffe, hippo, rhino, ape, etc. etc. Plus she knows her head, hair, ears, eyes, nose, mouth, teeth, tongue, belly button, heinie (very cute when she points to it), knees, ankles, toes, etc. Words are not a problem. :-)

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:49 AM | Comments (0)

September 05, 2005

Scientific Notation

A few weeks ago we bought some new pajamas for Dorothy since she was seriously outgrowing her old ones. I found some nice unisex ones (read: got them off the "boys" rack) that had planets and stuff on them. Later, I discovered how cool these jammies were: One pair had a drawing of the planet Saturn on it, along with the mass of the planet in scientific notation! How cool is that?!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:46 PM | Comments (1)

August 30, 2005

Language Explosion

The explosion of Dorothy's language abilities has been continuing, and we wanted to record her current state before she gets to the level of the high school debate team.

Below are new words she can say and/or sign (that she couldn't do as of the last report), and words that she now says that she only signed before (at least, these are the ones we can think of right now):

  • Animals: Cat (pronounced "wahnwa"), bear, owl, dog, bird, deer, bunny, duck, fish, sheep, frog

  • Food: Milk, water, cracker, cookie, cheese, apple

  • Misc. objects: Socks, bus, bike, bah-bahl (for big/blue ball), diaper, frisbee, bathtub, slide, moon, Aquadoodle (said as "ahdoo"), block, door (she can say these last two very clearly)

  • People: Dorothy, Meemom, Poopop (sounds like Boopah), Emma

  • Abstract: Help, bye, outside, down, up, high five, please

  • Compound words: Other (said "oh" as in "o-bear" and "o-sock"), more (e.g., she's now saying "more food" instead of just "more")

Some of these words are also used to name specific books. For example, the book "I Love You, Little One" has a picture of many animals in it, including deer, so she calls it the deer book ("dee"). And "More More More Said the Baby" is the "baby" book.

She also chatters on for long periods of time, although it's mostly babbling that we can't understand.

Dorothy knows many body parts. She can point to her head, hair, ears, eyes, nose, mouth, teeth, shoulders, belly button, knees, feet & toes. And she understands some colors pretty well. If you ask her to hand you the blue duck, etc., she usually gets it right.

It's pointless to try and list all the words she can understand, because 1) there are so many, and 2) she understands more than we realize. I'll see if I can collect anecdotes to give examples in a separate post, but here's just one to give you an idea. At the zoo yesterday, after lunch we'd put the remaining pieces of cheese on the front of her stroller for her to eat as we were going around. They stayed there for a little while, and I thought she was full. So I asked her if she was going to eat them, and got no response. I then commented that maybe I should throw them out, since they were getting soft in the sun. She immediately grabbed them and snarfed down the cheese before I could blink.

UPDATE: Additional words that we either forgot, or heard very clearly for the first time today, are: pizza, eye, teeth, open, rhino, and OK. Elizabeth figures that Dorothy is now learning to say almost one new word a day. :-O The avalanche is beginning...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 11:55 AM | Comments (3)

August 25, 2005

Cracking the Whip

Now that Dorothy is walking and talking, Elizabeth and I have decided that it's time for Dorothy to pull her weight around the house. Starting last week, we've started giving Dorothy chores to do. You know, easy things like fetching pails of water, milking the cows, etc.

Actually, we're starting with one simple chore, with which she receives lots of help. Dorothy is now feeding the cats. Every evening before bathtime, we all go into the bathroom where their bowls & food are kept. Dorothy helps get out the bucket of cat food, and we get down the food bowls. We usually have to help Dorothy scoop out the food because she can't really reach all the way into the current bucket (we're going to get a smaller one). She then takes the scoop and dumps the food mostly into the bowl (which one of us usually holds for her, since her aim is better when the bowl is up off the ground). Kibbles that fall onto the floor are usually picked up and put into the bowl by hand.

Once we get a smaller food bucket, I think Dorothy might be able to handle feeding the cats mostly by herself within a couple of months, perhaps sooner. Then we'll add another chore, like mowing the lawn. ;-)

So, are Elizabeth and I monsters for making such a young child do a "chore," or are we late to the chore party?

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:22 PM | Comments (4)

August 09, 2005

Anti Social Climber

As previously mentioned, Dorothy has developed a climbing habit. I have to admit that she's pretty careful about it most of the time, and that we haven't really been trying to discourage it much. But she's really working on giving me gray hair.

We've been pushing the high chair up to the dining room table so that Dorothy can eat dinner with us in the evenings. But she usually finishes before we do, and demands to be released. But she doesn't want out of the high chair - oh no. If I take her out, she will climb right back in. And then she will stand on the seat and start shaking the back of the chair. And jumping. This evening, she had a sippy cup of milk, and she was standing with one foot on the seat, one on one of the arms, tipping her head back to drink, and bouncing. If I take her down, she just screams and climbs back up.

I'm trying not to make a big fuss and give her the idea that she can get a rise out of me this way. And I have to admit that she hasn't fallen, and hasn't even really threatened to fall. But my heart is in my throat the whole time. I have to avert my eyes from the scene, while Tom chuckles evilly. The other day, I had to leave the room and let him deal with it. I think this is cosmic retribution for the time my mother came out the back door and found me waaay above the roof in the backyard tree, or maybe for when I climbed two stories on the outside of the railing on the steps outside our apartment building when I was five.

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 10:05 PM | Comments (3)

August 03, 2005

Dorothy's First Potty

This afternoon, I bought Dorothy a "Potty 'N Step Stool." We figure she might as well get used to it before we start trying to get her to actually use it (which I don't expect us to even try to work on for a couple of months at least).

She liked sitting on it (clothed or naked), but only with the lid down. It may take a bit to get used to the feeling of sitting on an open seat. But at least it's fun to sit on in some configuration!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:59 PM | Comments (0)

July 29, 2005

The 18 / 18 Rule

Dorothy is just over one month away from an important transition point. A few years ago, a friend of mine (from way back when I was an undergrad), talking about children, told me:

You spend the first 18 months of their lives convincing them they're the center of the universe, and then the next 18 years convincing them they're not.

Dorothy turns 17 months old in another week. And come September 6th, her world is due for some reconfiguration.

Or maybe not. Grandparents' attitudes aside, how could we say "no" to this face?

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:45 PM | Comments (2)

July 27, 2005

Our Little Monkey

Dorothy has suddenly turned into a monkey. In the last week or two, she's been able to climb into the chair in her room by herself. She climbs up the outside of her Kangaroo Climber (the right hand side of this object). Or she'll stand up (without holding onto anything!) in the notch up at the top of the Kangaroo Climber.

Today, though, she completely took Elizabeth and me by surprise. We were getting dinner ready. I'd just come in from tending the grill outside, and Elizabeth and I were both over by the kitchen sink and counters. I turned around, and there was Dorothy, sitting in her high chair. But I hadn't put her there. Neither had Elizabeth. We took her out of the chair, and she immediately proceeded to climb (quite safely, I might add) right back up into the chair. We were floored. Then when she saw us both looking at her, she proceeded to stand up in the high chair. Next I assume she's just going to do jumping jacks on the edge of a cliff.

I realized, somewhere in the back of my mind, that at some point Dorothy was going to be able to get into just about anything she wanted to. But I'd sort of been assuming she'd be bigger (and more mature/developed) before it would happen. Is nothing going to be safe in our household this soon?!?

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:46 PM | Comments (2)

July 26, 2005

A new stage?

Dorothy has developed a number of new behaviors very recently (like in the past week). She's suddenly being more affectionate with her teddy bears, carrying them around and hugging them (and playing with them with Daddy). She will stop playing to come find us and spontaneously hug us. And when we tell her it's time to stop playing (e.g., because it's bathtime or time to come home from daycare), she will throw a fit, yelling "no, no!" and trying to push our faces away when we pick her up.

While we were giving her her bath this evening, Tom was saying that it seemed like she was in some kind of phase, but we couldn't quite put our finger on what it was. Then I realized a common theme - I think she's suddenly realized that she can consciously express her emotions.

We've usually been able to tell what she thinks for quite a while, but I think it's been more that we're able to read her reflexive signals. But now I think she's doing it with awareness of what she's doing, and so she can do more complicated things to express how she's feeling. If she was feeling happy and we happened to be holding her before, she might give us a hug or a snuggle, but now she can think that she wants to hug Mommy, come find me, and hug my knees until I pick her up. Or when I come to get her at daycare while she's playing, she could say, "no, no" before, but she wouldn't scream it while pushing on my face and trying to squirm out of my arms, and then pout in the car seat and refuse to hold a book or a toy. (That lasted until I'd been on the road for two minutes - then she started having fun playing with the Velcro on her shoes.) When she didn't want to stop playing with her doll furniture at bathtime tonight, I was able to "negotiate" by asking if she'd like to take the toy bathtub with her, and avert the screaming meltdown we had last night. (She had lots of fun putting the toy people in the toy bathtub and filling it with water while she was standing in the real bathtub).

Dorothy's transformation from a baby with little or no real capability for thought into a "real person" isn't a smooth and linear process - there are fits and jumps along the way, sometimes taking one step back for every two steps forward. Sometimes it's frustrating and infuriating, especially when my old strategies for relating to her stop working, and I have to go back and figure out what's going on in her mind. But it's probably the most fascinating thing I've ever watched, and I can't wait to see what happens next.

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 08:16 PM | Comments (1)

July 11, 2005

"Bye" She Said

Sometime this past week, Dorothy learned to say "bye" (or maybe it's "bai"). She would sometimes say "bye bye bye" when reading the end of Pat the Bunny (where the kids say "goodbye") and similar times, but it was sporadic, and required prompting.

This morning, I was holding Dorothy as Elizabeth loaded some items into her car before heading off to daycare and then work. Elizabeth came back in, and I handed Dorothy over to her. Dorothy turned to me, then without any prompting said "bye" as clear as day, waved her hand once, then turned away.

The whole thing had a bit of an "OK, Dad, I'm done with you, let's go" feel to it. But I guess she's just starting to prepare me for the next 18 years, as she continually goes "bye bye" for longer times and further away.

Is it too early to miss her when she leaves for college?

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:30 AM | Comments (2)

July 05, 2005

Ahh, Sleep!

Saturday was Dorothy's last day of taking amoxicillin for her latest ear infection. Her sleep had actually started improving the previous weekend - no more 5am wakings (or at least, she'd go back to sleep after only a few minutes of noise).

Over the last few days, though, she's been doing even better - she hasn't gotten up before 7am since at least Friday, maybe longer. Oh sweet sleep! It's amazing how much nicer it is to be able to sleep until 7am instead of just 6am. Maybe she's not such a morning person after all.

Of course, her naps were mostly shorter (unless she was snuggling with her Mommy), but I'd happily trade off shorter nap time for longer morning sleep.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:52 AM | Comments (0)

July 03, 2005

Shape Sorter

Dorothy's developed two interesting geometry/visualization skills recently.

First, she has some number-shaped refrigerator magnets, which she loves playing with. Sometimes she will bring us numbers to hand to us, and it seems like it's almost always a matched pair - two eights or two zeros or two sevens, for example. She rarely hands us un-matched pairs, even though she will play with lots of different numbers.

Second, I've written about Dorothy playing with her multi-shape/multi-color blocks before (February, May). She's now reliably putting all four different shapes through their respective holes. She's repeatedly put the entire set of twelve blocks into the bucket, with little or no coaching. If she gets frustrated, though, she will repeat the earlier trick of taking off the lid to get the block into the box.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:45 AM | Comments (0)

June 29, 2005


Dorothy's command of language has now advanced into the dangerous yet cute stage. She has learned "yes" and, more importantly, "no."

"Yes" needs to be seen to be appreciated. (We're working on getting some videotape.) Dorothy's eyes will get very large, and she'll nod her head up and down in a long arc very slowly, giving her a very serious look. She doesn't say the word "yes" much - this one is mostly just the motion.

"No," on the other hand, is very verbal. She can occasionally say the word "no" but more often it comes out as "Neu neu neu neu neu." Which is, of course, made even cuter by her head vigorously shaking back and forth.

If there is some food she's decided she doesn't want, yet we offer it to her in her face anyway, she'll give us a definite "neuneuneu." But when we ask her if she wants strawberries for dessert, she'll sometimes grin and giggle, and other times give the big, serious "yes."

She has liked giving us high-five ever since her grandma Caroline taught her months ago. Recently, though, sometimes when we ask her to give us a high-five, she'll say "neuneuneuneu" as she shakes her head and pushes our hand out of the way.

It's all cute and fun now, but I'm trying hard not to laugh too much in her presence, because I know it's going to quickly develop into a much stronger and more annoying skill.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 01:32 PM | Comments (1)

June 25, 2005

A problem with genetics

As I've previously mentioned, Tom and I are both night owls. Through some freak of genetics, however, we fear that we have created a morning person. An early morning person.

Dorothy has been an early riser since she started sleeping through the night, rarely sleeping past 6:00 AM. For the last couple of weeks, however, she's been waking up sometime between 4:00 and 5:00 every morning, and screaming until someone gets up with her.

Sometimes she settles down reasonably quickly when someone comes to get her, but frequently she's been inconsolable for quite a while, and touchy for even longer. A couple of times, she seemed almost not to recognize us, just arching her back and screaming.

Tom took her to the pediatrician on Thursday, and she does look like she has an ear infection, so she's on Amoxicillin again. That morning, she also gave some evidence that she'd been constipated (I'll spare you the details, but it involved four diaper changes in two hours.) Since then, she's been a bit better, sleeping until 5:30 for the last two nights. But she still wants to get up then and play.

She doesn't necessarily need a lot of attention during her early morning play, but it is not acceptable for the parent watching her to lie down on the couch. What she really likes is to sit on my lap while I sit on the floor, but I'm not allowed even to lean over and rest my head on the couch. If I do, she fusses and complains and grabs my hair to try to haul me upright. I'm not sure what the problem is with me being comfortable, but she lets it be known that I'm not to do it.

Someone please tell me that all toddlers are morning people, and that I'll be trying to haul her out of bed before noon in a few years, please!

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 09:21 PM | Comments (0)

June 13, 2005

15-Month Check-up

Dorothy had her 15 month check-up today, and everything seems to be good. The doctor said she looks very healthy. She weighed in around 24lbs 8oz, and her height was measured at 34 3/4 inches, both of which are around 75th percentile or a bit higher (pretty much the percentile she's been tracking in forever). Head circumference was around 18 3/4 inches, which is in the 90-95th percentile. She's got a fat head just like her Daddy, and it explains why it's so hard to get clothes (which otherwise fit) over her head.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 01:39 PM | Comments (0)

June 11, 2005

Language at 15 Months

Dorothy seems to have begun an explosion of language development over the last few weeks, and we wanted to record her state of progress now, before we forget. She can communicate via sign language, as well as some spoken language (and sometimes both at the same time). And the amount of spoken words she can understand is sometimes staggering. Here's a list, probably incomplete, of what she knows now:


  • more (sometimes she means "want"), milk, food, water, all done

  • sleep, shoes

  • car, want, daddy, bird

  • cheese, banana, cookie

  • wheels? (we never showed her, but it was clear she was indicating wheels on a car when she did the sign)

  • Not sure if it's a sign, but she can flap her wings to indicate "chicken"


  • mommy, daddy, hi

  • uh-oh (recently transformed into "uh-oo")

  • baby

  • ball ("bah"), more ("moah" - just like in Boston!)

  • book ("buh-k")

  • cat (she pronounces it "eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee" and occasionally "kih-eee")

  • knee, bottle, bubble (these two are clear in context)

Said once or twice: water, pretty?, basketball ("baa-baa"), sock, nose, Raggy (for Raggedy Ann)

She can reliably nod her head "yes" and "no."

Some of the words she understands (there are a ton!):

  • body parts: ears, nose, mouth, toes, knee, foot, belly button, head?

  • food: "food," banana, strawberry, cookie, milk, dinner, lunch, breakfast, snack, sausage, water, yogurt, chicken, cheese

  • cat, bird, out/outside, ceiling, steps/stairs, chair, seat, book, climb, slide, lap, sit, stand, bath, sink (her toy bath sink), mirror, Raggedy Ann, kiss, hug, "I'm gonna get you!"

In general, she seems to understand the general meaning of many sentences we say to her, such as suggesting that she go get a book and bring it back to us. She also understands when we ask her to put something away (not that she always does it....). And she can understand and obey when we ask her to stand up or sit down when she's getting a bath.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:16 PM | Comments (5)

May 25, 2005

Our Little Monkey

Dorothy has enjoyed climbing on stuff for weeks now (maybe longer). It has been cute when she tries to lift one leg to put a foot up on a ridiculously high barrier (e.g., the edge of the tub when she's taking a bath). Over the weekend, though, she started matching her abilities to her sights - higher.

Elizabeth and I were unpacking & cataloging more books (an on-going process). The books were all in book-size packing boxes, the ones that are 1.5 cubic feet. Dorothy, with some struggle, climbed up onto those boxes multiple times! We measured, and the height is roughly 13 inches, much higher than the ledges (6 to 8 inches) she's been climbing on so far. She'd pull herself up onto the box, then sit there happy as a clam.

Similarly, if the pillow was at the base of the chair and a half, she was able to climb up onto that chair. Now we're going to have to start worrying about her falling from greater and greater heights...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:30 AM | Comments (1)

May 24, 2005

Play = Learn

Elizabeth recently read, and I'm just starting, the book "Einstein Never Used Flash Cards" (by K. Hirsh-Pasek and R.M. Golinkoff, with D. Eyer). The premise of the book is that children are being too rushed into academics (some kindergartens require reading skills before entry!), and this trend not only does not improve children's later academic achievement, but it is increasing anxiety and depression in children, and stealing away time to interact with parents.

I found the following quote reflects a good part of what I enjoy so much about Dorothy:

Thinking is so central to being human, and it is amazing to witness its evolution through the child's eyes, yet many parents are missing this unique opportunity because of the intense emphasis on achievement.
It's true. Just watching Dorothy learn, play, and figure out stuff is truly entrancing. Sometimes she gets a cute look of intense concentration (often with the tongue slightly sticking out from her lips) as she's working with some toys. And other times she gets so ecstatic from a new skill. It's hard to describe the process; I just know I love watching it.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 12:41 PM | Comments (2)

May 20, 2005


Earlier this week, while reading the part of her peek-a-boo book that has a puppy dog hiding under the bed, Dorothy started saying "puppy." It comes out sounding more like "buppy" but it is very clear what she's saying. We think this is only the third two-syllable word she's said (besides "mommy" and "daddy," each of which may also be the same as "mama" and "daddoo").

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:13 AM | Comments (0)

May 16, 2005

Going the Extra Mile

There were three notable Dorothy developments in the last 36 hours:

  1. Yesterday morning, while reading her peek-a-boo book, Dorohty started saying "puppy" (well, it's more like "buppy") when she saw the puppy under the bed (the bed in the book, that is. The cats have been traumatized enough this year).

  2. This evening after dinner, we took the garbage to the street and brought in the mail. Dorothy walked the entire distance from the street up the driveway, uphill, through the garage, and climbed the two stairs to the kitchen. As you can see from the aerial view of the property (the street is at the top), that's quite a distance - at least a couple hundred feet!

  3. Dorothy had her first semi-major head injury tonight. She was walking back and forth in our bathroom, and at one point tripped and bonked her forehead on the ledge around the bathtub. She screamed of course, and got a raised bump on her forehead. She calmed down eventually, but would start screaming again every time we tried putting a cold pack on it. By the time she went to bed, the bump was looking better.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:33 PM | Comments (1)

May 15, 2005

Cheating or Being Smart?

This morning, Dorothy was putting her different shape blocks into their bucket. The blocks come in four cross-section shapes: circle, square, triangle, and star. Putting the circle through the round hole is easy. The others are more difficult because of their lower rotational symmetry (i.e., there are fewer angles it can be rotated to and still fit through the hole).

Dorothy has been putting the circular blocks through the round hole off and on for weeks now. More recently, she has occasionally been able to get a square or star shaped block through their holes, but she'll often give up. This morning, after getting frustrated at not being able to get one of the blocks through any of the holes, she took the lid off the bucket and put the block in directly. To an adult, this seems like cheating. But of course, in a different sense it is a very smart tactic - if you're trying to get the blocks in the bucket, and there's an obstacle you can't overcome, simply remove the obstacle.

Hopefully she learns a little more about self restraint before she starts seeing Daddy as an obstacle...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:59 AM | Comments (2)

May 12, 2005


Yesterday, Dorothy made a surprising development that would make her Uncle Keith (the skydiver) proud. While sitting on a section of the hide-a-bed couch where the cushion had been removed (i.e., it was a lower than normal place to sit), Dorothy grabbed a square couch pillow, maneuvered it so that it was in front of her chest, hung on and then leapt off the couch. She landed on her chest on the pillow, and was perfectly safe. She rolled off the pillow, stood up and toddled away as if it were no big deal.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:32 PM | Comments (1)

May 02, 2005

Walking Update & More

As mentioned before, Dorothy's been taking at least a few steps without any help (1, 2, 3). Over the last four or five days, though, she's really gotten more interested in the ability. It used to be that we mostly had to coax her to walk without support - she was much more interested in holding onto our fingers for support as she walked around. But now, she's not only walking 10 feet at a time without any support, but she's voluntarily letting go of fingers in order to walk on her own. Thus begins one of the developments that will help our aching backs to heal.

Dorothy also really likes to climb. She'll try standing on her chair or on her rocking dog. She will climb onto small boxes, ledges, and she's tried getting onto furniture. Any day now she'll be hanging from the jungle gym, I just know it.

One other thing she likes: swings.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 05:53 PM | Comments (0)

April 19, 2005

Finer Motor Skills

Elizabeth and I were surprised by the latest development in Dorothy's fine motor skills. She's had a set of colored beads that are each about three inches across, with a tab on one end and a hole (maybe just over one-quarter inch?) on the other end. As we've seen (1, 2), she is recently able to put mega-blocks together (a skill that Elizabeth read generally didn't come until closer to 18 months). But today, Dorothy put two of the beads together (inserting the tab into the hole)! It takes relatively precise alignment to get them together, and so we were amazed when she just started doing it this evening.

I know I shouldn't brag about random developmental milestones Dorothy reaches (simple reporting should be enough for the grandparents and various friends), because different kids advance at different rates, and when they achieve any particular milestone has very little bearing on their future development. And I'll try to refrain from being obnoxious about it in the future. But it's just so cool! Next thing you know, she'll be juggling chainsaws or something...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:29 PM | Comments (1)

April 15, 2005

Sign Up

Dorothy is getting much better at her sign language.

Yesterday afternoon Dorothy was playing in the living room, after having gone to story time and then hanging at the mall while having the car's oil changed (she got to nap at the mall). I was tired, so I laid down on the couch and dozed a bit. I would open my eyes every couple of minutes to make sure she was OK. And after a while she was mostly playing right in front of me. After a half hour, she woke me up, did the sign for "all done" (which she now does when she's nearly done with food, when definitely done with food, in the middle of getting her diaper changed, when she wants to be picked up, etc.) to which I responded "Is Daddy all done with his nap now?" She immediately gave me the sign for "food" so I took her to the kitchen for a snack. But overall, I was stunned. She nudged me awake, told me she was done with playing and was hungry for a snack. All without saying a word, and at the ripe old age of 13 months.

Who knows what magical communication she'll be capable of at 18 months? "Hey pops, get your lazy butt out of bed and bring me some damn Cheerios!"

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:40 PM | Comments (1)

April 13, 2005


Dorothy's learned to quaff! While sitting in the bathtub, she'll take the bowl we use for dumping water on her (which we received from the hospital when she was born!), hold it up to her face (much like she does in this photo), and drink. She'll of course splash and spill a bunch of water, but that's the essence of quaffing, right?

"Quaffing is like drinking, but you spill more."

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:27 PM | Comments (1)

April 04, 2005

Aahh Ooh

Dorothy's verbal development continues apace. "Bah" has been joined by a couple of other sounds. The cutest one is her version of "Uh-oh." She loves saying it, but it comes out more like "ahh ooh" or sometimes it gets an extra first syllable, as "ah ahh ooh." A few times she's said "kih-ee" to mean "kitty cat" (said while pointing at one of the cats).

She's expanded her sign language too. She can say milk easily, and has her version of a sign (combined with a 'bah') that means either 'water' or 'sippy cup.' She can also do her own version of "all done," too, which makes her happy when we realize that she really does want to stop eating. Lastly, if we remind her, she can sometimes sign 'more.'

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:01 PM | Comments (0)

Resistance is Futile

Dorothy's getting too smart. In the evening, she's happy running around naked after bath time, right up until we try to put a diaper on her. Then she realizes the end is near, and we're going to try to make her GO TO SLEEP! Oh, the horrors!

She used to really enjoy reading books before bedtime. But now, since we've put pajamas on her and are dimming the lights, she knows that lights out will come soon, so nothing (except nursing) can distract her from much wailing and gnashing of teeth. So I can't really describe her bedtime routine as a calm, peaceful event.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:53 PM | Comments (0)

April 03, 2005

Our Little Drug Addict

Defective Yeti has a post about his son (who is about Dorothy's age) dealing with the flu and new teeth, sort of like Dorothy's been experiencing recently. His comment about the wonderful effects of Baby Tylenol mirrors Dorothy's experience (namely, she now welcomes the Tylenol plastic syringe with a wide-open mouth), and is similar to comments I've seen elsewhere.

Ah yes, I'm so glad we're teaching our child that sweet, numbing relief from the pain of the world comes from a drug in a syringe.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 11:48 PM | Comments (2)

March 29, 2005

The Greatest Word

DaddyTypes stole our baby! Or at least, that's what you might think, based on the post. :-) Or maybe Dorothy isn't the only baby who can say lots of "ba" words...

I mean heck, just looking around her toy area, we see block, box, book, bird, birdhouse, ball, et cetera.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:59 PM | Comments (2)

March 27, 2005

Growing Up Overnight

Earlier this week, one of Dorothy's daycare teachers commented that she seemed to have grown up overnight. Within a very short time, she's suddenly started gobbling up solid food, standing up, walking a few steps, chattering for long periods of time, and putting herself to sleep at naptime. She's also sleeping through the night, and breaking four molars.

As mentioned previously, Dorothy's been walking for a week now. On Friday, she started standing up without using anything for support - she starts on hands and feet, sticks her behind waaay up in the air, then sort of bends at the knees as she leans back to bring her torso to vertical position. And then she can start walking from there. This morning, she stood up from sitting on her chair, took a couple steps, stopped, took a couple more steps and stopped again, then took a couple more steps before falling forward. She's never had that much control before; up until now she's just kept leaning further and further forward with each step until she falls on her tummy.

We can feel three large bumps on her gums where molars come in, plus a sharp corner of one molar that's already broken through. The pain seems to come and go, but certainly seems extremely annoying at night. For whatever reason, she's been fussing at bedtime to a great extent, and a dose of Tylenol seems to be the only thing that lets her sleep. Hopefully the remaining molars will come in (or slow down) soon, so that she can get more peace.

We're not sure if she's starting a growth spurt, or if the breaking through of her first molar has eased the sensitivity of her gums, or what, but she's suddenly decided that solid food is good stuff. As you may have seen in the photo gallery, chicken nuggets and grilled cheese sandwiches are very popular. She ate almost an entire grilled cheese sandwich for dinner one night this week! :-O It seems like such a leap in volume compared to her jars of strained meat and veggies. Other foods she's been eating, either at home and/or at daycare, include: fish sticks, hash browns, pizza crust + cheese, whole bananas, and macaroni and cheese. And at breakfast, she's been like a little dog begging table scraps - she bugs me for pieces of my bagel. It's getting to the point where I have to wolf down my breakfast if I want to be able to eat a majority of it.

Finally, in a development we've been longing for forever, Dorothy now sleeps through the night. She's usually asleep by 8pm, and hasn't woken us up before 6am in a week, at least. This weekend, she even let us sleep in till 7am! A luxury! She may be waking a bit at night, but she's not making much noise, and not for long. It truly feels wonderful, and we're grateful she's made it to this stage.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:20 PM | Comments (0)

March 23, 2005

Super Ninja

Years and years ago, I read some blurb (I don't know how accurate it is) that said something to the effect of "If humans kept growing at the rate they do when born, then by age 9 they would be as big as Earth [or some such startling size]." (This growth rate can be seen, for example, with Trixie.)

Similarly, children learn amazingly fast. I've read that neurons can have as many as 15,000 synapses (connection with other neurons, to my understanding). And up until age two, babies form 2 million synapses per second! They actually learn by pruning those neurons, like the way that neural nets 'learn' by changing the weights of connections.

Dorothy's walking ability has been getting noticeably better on an almost daily basis. That fact got me to thinking: If humans could keep learning and improving their skills through life as fast as they do during their childhood years, people could someday be like super-ninja movie superstars. You know, be able to walk a tightrope and fight off bad guys at the same time, then do a flying back flip; read and speak 10 different languages; do advanced code decryption; etc. Our brains probably aren't big enough to handle all of that, but who knows. At our rate of learning, and given the fact that the super-learning window closes by the end of puberty, it shouldn't be surprising that at most people can become a master at only one task. But what if your learning rate didn't slow down, and didn't end?...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 05:38 PM | Comments (0)

March 22, 2005

Walking tall

A major milestone this weekend - Dorothy took her first real steps on Sunday!

Dorothy has gotten very good at standing and walking with minimal help - she'll hold your hand, or even just rest her arm against something stable, and she can stand pretty much indefinitely (or until her excitement overwhelms her balance, anyway). But she's been very reluctant to let go of that stabilizing point. She has been standing occasionally without holding on (especially in the bathtub) for a few seconds at a time. Usually it happens when she sees two toys that she wants to pick up at once, and she forgets that she's not holding onto anything. Once she notices that she's standing without support, she sits down and/or grabs something.

We've been trying to encourage her to walk by having one of us help her stand, and then the other holds out his/her hands a couple of feet away and calls her. She's been taking a couple of lurching, falling steps to get to the other person, but nothing remotely stable, until this weekend (although she loves the game, even after giving herself a bloody nose playing it in the doctor's office a few weeks ago). Part of the problem is that she gets so excited that she leans way forward to try to get to the person calling her, and then she's too overbalanced to walk. But this weekend, I got her to stand up while leaning back against my body (not holding my hands), so she wouldn't dive forward as much, and she just toddled right over to Tom, three or four steps. She also will stand up from sitting in her chair and walk a few steps to either of us, and she's starting to be willing to let go of Tom's hands in order to walk to me (although it doesn't seem to work in the other direction if I start by holding her hands, instead of having her lean against me).

It's really fun for us, not least because she is so proud of herself. She giggles and preens and generally makes it clear that she thinks she is just hot stuff. (Of course, she also gets lots of praise from us for her new "trick"!) She also wants to try it over and over, although her balance isn't as good when she's laughing her head off.

We don't have any really good photos or video yet, because she really wants both of us to be playing in order to do it - so there's no one to run the camera. We tried to videotape it this evening, but didn't get really great footage. But I'm sure we'll have lots of opportunities for more.

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 09:43 PM | Comments (0)

March 20, 2005

Sleep and food update

As a first step towards weaning Dorothy, for the past couple of weeks, it's been Tom, rather than Elizabeth, that gets up with her at night. When Elizabeth gets up with her, nothing but nursing will do to go back to sleep. But when Tom gets up, rocking and singing for a few minutes is enough.

But it turns out that a beneficial side effect of this is that Dorothy has decided it's not really worth screaming for help if she wakes at night, since she's not going to get any milk anyway. So she's been sleeping through from 7:30 or 8 PM until 5 AM. She usually wakes and fusses for a while then, but goes back to sleep until 6 or 6:30. She nurses then, and then just has cow's milk until bedtime. We'll probably try to eliminate the morning nursing fairly soon, as well - the bedtime session will probably be the last to go.

In the daytime, she's settled into the daycare routine of one nap in the afternoon pretty well. At home, she sometimes takes one nap, and sometimes two, depending on when she got up and what the activities have been. She's generally getting around 2 hours (plus or minus an hour) of sleep during the day, though. It's nice to have her more predictable!

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 06:06 PM | Comments (0)

March 15, 2005


In the last week, Dorothy has developed the excessively cute habit of saying "hi" (but it's longer than a normal "hi", more like "haaiieee") to anything with a face. Raggedy Ann. The picture of the baby on her breakfast yogurt container. The pictures in her picture flip book (contains pictures of relatives). Her little MegaBlok Pooh-Bear and Eeyore. Et cetera.

Oddly, she says it less frequently to real, live people. Maybe we're just not as interesting...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:12 AM | Comments (2)

March 10, 2005

12-month Check-up

Dorothy had her 12-month check-up today. It seems, though, that Dorothy has a habit of sometimes getting sick just in time for a pre-scheduled doctor's visit. She was feeling warm this morning, and getting more listless as the day wore on. My mom and I measured Dorothy's temperature about an hour before her doctor's appointment. The result? 103.6 degrees. Crack open the egg and start poaching it!

It turns out that her ears both look bad. Maybe it's a continuation of her previous double ear infection, or maybe it's something new. It may or may not be related to the temperature. In any case, the doctor gave us an antibiotic prescription to help clear up the ears. But she's not going to daycare on Friday.

In more happy news, Dorothy is roughly 30 inches tall (~75th percentile), and 21lbs 13oz (somewhere between 50th and 75th percentile), all of which is pretty good. Her head circumference was roughly 18.5 inches (47cm I think), although it was hard to be exact with her squirming and fighting the measurement. Besides being sick, the doctor thought that Dorothy seemed to be doing well developmentally.

One benefit, from Dorothy's point of view, of her being sick is that she couldn't get her vaccinations today - they'll have to wait until she's not sick anymore!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:49 PM | Comments (0)

March 08, 2005

War whoop

This is really an overdue post, since Dorothy mostly isn't indulging in the described behavior any more. But we didn't want to forget about it, either.

For most of the month of January (at least), Dorothy's method of communicating "no!" was what we called the war whoop. At least, I think that's what I used to call it growing up - where you sort of yodel a tone and flap your hand against your mouth to vary the pitch. She would do it with the back of her hand, and she could get some pretty good volume and variation in the pitch.

Currently, she says, "Nai nai nai nai" to mean no. Except when it's, "'no, I don't want to eat this" - she communicates that by dropping the food off the side of the high chair. We're working on it...

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 08:57 PM | Comments (0)

March 02, 2005

Overprotective Parents

There's a bunch I want to say about this article from Psychology Today on parents who try to protect their children from any and all bumps or difficulties in their lives. I don't have time now, but go read the article. It provides great arguments for why you should let your kids figure things out for themselves and let them have unstructured play, rather than scheduling and guiding their entire lives for them.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:39 AM | Comments (1)

February 28, 2005

Playin' with the Big Kids

Dorothy began her transition to the next age group at daycare today. She'll be part of a group of "waddlers" (not quite toddlers), roughly age 12-18 months. She spent two hours over in that room today, and apparently had a ball. In fact, she had so much fun playing with the "big" kids" that she tired herself out enough to fall asleep in her high chair at lunchtime. The teacher extracted her from the chair and put her down for a nap, which then lasted almost three hours!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:02 PM | Comments (0)

February 14, 2005

More Weight Loss

Dorothy's been sick. One thing I didn't mention before is her weight loss due to the diarrhea (now going on for over a week, with loose stools for weeks before that) and refusal to eat almost anything.

Dorothy has been refusing to eat almost anything (except a bit of yogurt in the morning) for at least a week, maybe more (it's hard to remember through the haze of the last two weeks). She'll nurse fine, and has been chewing on her water-filled sippy cup (and getting a small amount of water in the process), but she's not really getting any nutrition beyond breastmilk.

Back at her nine month check-up at the beginning of December, she weighed 20 lbs 12 oz. Sometime in January, we weighed her on our home scale and she was roughly 22 lbs. She's been tracking along in the roughly 75th percentile for height and weight since she was one month old.

On February 1st, when we first took her to see the pediatrician (because of what turned out to be a virus, likely RSV), they weighed her at 21 lbs 8 oz. That measurement was taken on an old balance scale, and Dorothy was squirmy, but I'm sure it was close enough. Last Thursday (2/10), when we took her in for the follow-up that became a diagnosis of double ear infections, they weighed her (this time on a modern, digital scale) at 20 lbs, 10 oz. Today, only four days later, she came in at 20 lbs even (a bit below the 50th percentile for her age). She has lost almost 10% of her body weight in two weeks. The doctor didn't seem too worried about the weight loss because she's not yet showing any serious signs of dehydration. But it's been stressing us (me in particular) out to no end.

The good news is that her ears are looking much better, and she'll finish her antibiotics tomorrow. We've started giving her active culture yogurt and some acidopholus (on the recommendation of the doctor), which should help her innards get back in order, and hopefully stop the diarrhea shortly after she stops the antibiotics.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:35 PM | Comments (1)

February 12, 2005

New Tricks at 10+ Months

[Note: This entry was written by both Tom and Elizabeth, starting almost two weeks ago. So it's not completely up to date, but we're too busy with a sick baby to get this entry perfect.]

Moving across country has distracted us from posting regular updates on Dorothy's development, but holy cow has she been advancing. When she hasn't been coughing or vomiting, she's been crawling up a storm, standing and sitting, and generally being a whirlwind of activity. Here's a breakdown on what's been happening lately.

Since she started crawling back in early December, Dorothy has quickly progressed to a speed demon on knees. She can't quite catch the cats, but she's really working on it. One afternoon a week or so ago, she crawled after Cobalt in the kitchen, around the island in the middle of the floor. She'd go after him, he'd walk away and lay down. She'd catch up to him (with an occasional break to sit and watch him), and he'd walk away. They went around the island (which is probably 10 feet or more long, and maybe 3 wide) at least two or three complete circuits. Once she can maintain an even higher speed, she'll be a true cursorial hunter (which also explains her persistence; see below for more).

I don't know if the time spent in the hotels and then in the big open spaces of the new house had anything to do with it, or if it's just the passage of time, but she's really got the whole "I can go get something I see" thing down pat.

Another skill that's improved by leaps and bounds is her ability to pull herself to standing, and then sitting back down. At first she required something solid to pull up with, such as a low table, or jeans on a person's leg. But she can now stand up by pulling on my very stretchy pajama legs, or just by leaning against a wall. Or by leaning against the windows (yes, we'll have to clean the windows regularly, or just accept complete hand-print coverage). She also loves to use the edge of the tub to stand up in (or out of) the bathtub, and rarely slips on the bottom, even if she's not standing on the nonskid mat.

As before, she loves to walk by holding onto someone's hands. Over the last week, she's started to take at least a few steps holding on with only one hand. She's also quite good at stopping, squatting to pick up a toy, and standing back up, all holding on with only one hand. (Usually once she's got it, the toy is then clenched in the teeth so she can hold on with both hands to continue walking.) As of Friday, she will also take a couple of "falling steps" with no hands at all to get from one person to another. (Unfortunately, she slipped and gave herself a bloody nose doing this the first time, so she's a little more cautious about it now. We were passing the time in the pediatrician's office while waiting for the doctor to come in - we said that if she was going to hurt herself, at least she picked a good place.)

She also can sit in her little chair (and think's she's just the cat's pajamas when she does), although she hasn't mastered actually sitting down on it for herself - she still has to be set on it.

In addition, she's really trying to vocalize and communicate more. We've been working on teaching her sign language, and she has one very reliable word, "ball." She will use it correctly both verbally and signing, although neither is "pronounced" exactly correctly: the verbal sounds more like "bah," and the sign doesn't quite have the cupped hands of the adult version. Once she gets excited about us understanding her, she also starts applying both the word and the sign to everything in sight. She's also starting to make the sign for "more," although it's not clear what she thinks it means.

We can also really see all kinds of learning of more specific stuff going on. For instance, before we got our furniture, we were sleeping on an inflatable mattress on the floor. Dorothy has always tried to crawl off the edge of the bed with no seeming understanding of caution, and we let her do it when the bed was only six inches high. The first time, she picked exactly the wrong spot to exit and banged her head on the leg of her playpen - lots of screams and tears. The next time, she sort of slithered forward with her hands in front of her, landing on her face, but gently enough that it didn't hurt. By a few more tries, she was turning sideways, extending a leg to the floor, and easing herself down. Climbing up onto low places followed shortly thereafter. The bed was a little too squishy to climb onto, but she's quite good at climbing onto the ledge of the fireplace, which is about six inches off the floor.

She also has started playing with toys in a slightly more sophisticated way than just banging them together to hear a noise. She has a toy birdhouse with stuffed birds, and she loves to take the birds in and out (and will do so on command, usually). She's starting to put her geometric shaped blocks (her very first toy - thanks, Uncle Tom!) into the correct "sorter" holes (at least the circle). So she can stick a round peg into a round hole. I'm sure the nonconformist tendencies will reemerge, though.

Not only does 'D' stand for 'Dorothy,' but 'D' is also for 'determination.' Dorothy has developed a very strong sense of determination and persistence, and is generally capable of being very strong-willed. If she wants something (let's call it the "Object of Desire"), it is no longer so easy to distract her by waving some new toy in her face. She may pause in her crawling towards the Object of Desire, but she'll pause just long enough to remember that she's not interested in this distraction. She'll then continue on towards the Object of Desire. The bathtub is another obsession with her. There's a bathroom across the hall from her room, so when changing her, we often have to chase her across the hall as she goes to see if she can climb into the tub. And if she's just finished a bath, she'll definitely try to go back and see if there's still water. And if not, or if we've been smart and closed the bathroom door, she knows there's another tub in Mommy & Daddy's room! So she'll truck on down the hallway and try to make her way to the big tub in the master bathroom.

Mealtime is getting a little trickier, as she is often not content to just open her mouth and let us spoon in food. I think we've encountered a combination of reduced appetite due to her getting older plus being sick, along with a decreased interest in being spoon-fed. Many meals recently have consisted mostly of Mommy or Daddy waving some food near Dorothy's face while she waves her head back and forth "no!" and/or thrashes around like some head-banger. She'll also try to grab the spoon.

Even before she was sick, she loved her sippy cup, although she also loves shaking it to fling water everywhere. She's usually very good at picking up Cheerios, pear chunks, crackers, bits of bread, and most anything else that she can fit in her mouth. But if it's something she doesn't want to eat, she will pick it up and drop it off the side of the high chair. And being sick, she does that a lot. She also wants to hold a spoon and try to dip it in the food, but often gets excited and waves it around instead of sticking it in her mouth, flinging her sweet potatoes everywhere. Giving her a spoon for each hand and using a third to feed her will sometimes work, but she's been getting wise to that trick.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 07:44 PM | Comments (2)

February 07, 2005

Blue Poop

This morning, while changing Dorothy's diaper, I noticed what appeared to be a small piece of blue tape in amongst the more normal diaper contents. I'm not sure where she got it; perhaps it's one of the labels (about 1/2 inch by 1 inch) that the moving company used to inventory all our stuff. I do know that this is almost certainly the first of many odd things that will come through Dorothy's digestive tract. :-P

Posted by Tom Nugent at 03:05 PM | Comments (0)

December 30, 2004

Not Expecting It To Last

On Tuesday, for the first and perhaps last time in her life, Dorothy did what her Daddy told her to! Once in the morning, and then again in the afternoon, as she was crawling from the living room to the dining room, she stopped at the tape & CD rack, and reached for the tapes on the bottom shelves. I told her "No, Dorothy, don't play with the tapes." And then, she turned around and crawled away from the shelves!! I was stunned, especially the second time.

I'm certainly not expecting this behavior to last, and in fact this morning, she ignored me as I told her not to play with the shelves. But it was such a nice feeling to have for one day.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:35 AM | Comments (1)

December 26, 2004

Autumn Milestones

We haven't been doing a great job of documenting all the new things that Dorothy has been doing in the last couple of months, especially since it seems like she learns something new practically every day now. Here's the roundup of her recent accomplishments, as compiled by both Tom and Elizabeth:


The big news on this front is that Dorothy is crawling pretty well. She sometimes uses both knees, and sometimes still crawls on the right knee and left foot, but either way, she makes good time now. She can crawl over some obstacles (like toys, people's legs, and non-mobile babies at daycare), and sometimes will "tow" a toy or shoe with her as she moves. She keeps trying to crawl off the edge of the bed, but so far has not succeeded (at least not without someone hanging onto her ankles to keep her from actually bonking her head). She loves to be "chased" by a crawling adult (especially Daddy), playing "I'm gonna get ya!" Today, she started chasing Daddy, too, all the way from the kitchen to the back of the bedroom!

She still wants to walk (with someone holding her hands for balance), and has started to throw mini-tantrums if Mommy or Daddy sit her down too soon (they're pretty cute tantrums now, but I'm sure we won't think so in another year). She pulls up to standing on anything that she thinks might be strong enough to hold her, including the safety gates, the couch, the chair, any handy pant legs, Tom's clothes rack, the laundry basket (she's tipped that one over, but it works if an adult holds it for her).... She's especially good at standing up in the playpen in Daddy's office, and has started to work her way around the edge while standing. Once she's gotten to standing, she can stay that way with only one hand, and will wave the other around or grab for toys. She sometimes lets go with both hands, but doesn't stay up long yet when she does. Tom keeps telling her that balance is the key to being able to stand and walk without needing our help, which must be the reason she keeps trying.


Sleep continues to be the one problem area as far as Mommy and Daddy are concerned, but it's been getting better. Dorothy's bedtime is now around 7PM, and she usually sleeps at least until midnight (occasionally waking to fuss for a few minutes around 10PM, but that waking seems to be going away), occasionally making it until 3AM. She "wanders" all over the crib at night, often ending up in positions that we couldn't sleep in! She has been waking to eat around midnight and 4AM for the last few weeks, and we're currently working on eliminating the 4AM feeding. Right now, she often will stay up for a long time at 4AM, fussing whether we go to her or not, although sometimes a bottle of water will calm her enough to go back to sleep. She still reliably wakes up bright and chipper at 6AM or earlier, causing us to wonder where the "morning person" genes came from.

She is still queen of the 40 minute nap (an improvement from the 30 minute naps of the summer), but occasionally will go for 60-90 minutes, or even 2 hours if she's snuggling with Mommy or Daddy. She also will go a bit longer between naps - she gets sleepy again anywhere between 2 hours and 4 hours after the last one. We're just starting to work on transitioning her down to a single, longer nap mid-day, in anticipation of starting in the Toddler room at daycare out in Seattle at the end of January.


Dorothy has been trying lots of new foods, as she gradually reduces the amount of breastmilk she gets (especially during the day). She nurses in the morning and evening, and takes one big bottle in the afternoon now, but otherwise mostly eats "solids" in the daytime (three meals plus a snack or two). She detests carrots, but otherwise will eat almost anything she's offered (at least if she's hungry), including yogurt, rice cereal, oatmeal, chicken, beef, turkey, lamb, peas (grudgingly), pears, apples, bananas, and her favorite, green beans. She's starting to eat a few "unstrained" foods, including teething biscuits, apple and pear slices, and her other favorite, Cheerios. She particularly likes feeding Cheerios to Mommy, although she will sometimes change her mind on the way to Mommy's mouth and eat them herself, instead, then giggle.

She's not terribly interested in feeding herself most things, although she will happily smear strained food all over her face and high chair if she gets the chance. She does like to pick up and eat the Cheerios and fruit slices. She also started drinking water from a sippy cup a couple of weeks ago. Actually, she seems to mostly want to chew on the spout, but she does seem to get a reasonable amount of water into her (in addition to the puddles on the high chair and floor, and soaking her bib). If handed a spoon with strained food on it, she will put it in her mouth (usually), but we think it's more to chew on the spoon than to get the food. But she does get the food that way, too.

Other stuff

Most of Dorothy's favorite toys are not really designed as baby toys, of course. Top of the list is still the cordless phone, but she also enjoys pulling all the shoes off the shoe rack, crumpling and chewing on the phone books, and any paper she can get her hands on. She is obsessed with trying to get the cat food, but so far has not been allowed to succeed. She got a toy cordless phone for Christmas, which is not as good as the real thing, but was at least the only toy that she preferred to the box it came in on first sight.

She's started "sharing" her toys - she will hand us a block or other toy, and watch us "play" with it. She particularly likes to see Tom juggle her blocks (although she's not a discriminating watcher of juggling - she'll happily watch Elizabeth throw one block back and forth, even if she misses regularly). She'll usually accept the toy back if we offer it to her, but sometimes hands it right back to us again.

"Disappearing" games are also favorites. Peekaboo never gets old, and she can play herself now, pulling a blanket over her head, waiting long enough for us to say, "Where's Dorothy?" and then yanking it down again. She was fascinated when Tom started hiding a ball up his sleeve, and kept trying to pull his sleeve down again when he wanted to stop playing. She may not be talking yet, but she can communicate "again, again!" with crystal clarity.

She's making a lot more sounds, with more intonations. Common syllables are ma, wa, ba, oh, hi, ay, and yai, but there are plenty of others that occasionally crop up. A week or so ago, she and Elizabeth were looking at Cobalt, and she turned to Elizabeth, announced "Oh-bah," and then turned back to watching the cat. So we think that Cobalt has beat out Mommy and Daddy as the first creature in the house to be addressed by name. Around the same time, she was sitting in the exersaucer saying "bababababa" while Elizabeth was in the kitchen. Elizabeth called "babababa" back to her, and she angrily said, "BAbababa." Elizabeth then looked into the dining room and saw that she had her ball, and asked, "Are you playing with your ball?" Dorothy gurgled back happily, "bababababa." So we think that that was an initially misunderstood attempt to say "ball," although she seems to use the "ba" syllable for a lot of things.

The most traumatic development for Tom has been Dorothy's social development at daycare. Specifically, we've heard that she's developing a strong attachment to Ian, so strong that she's kissed him. Apparently one day when he was lying on the mat with his head up, minding his own business, she leaned over, and planted a kiss right on his lips. Then she looked around to see if anyone had spotted her. Tom plans to start shopping for his new shotgun soon.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:03 PM | Comments (1)

December 12, 2004

T+9 months and Healthy!

Dorothy's 9-month check-up by the pediatrician was last Thursday, and she's been declared healthy (except for the on-going cold). She weighed in at 20 lbs. and 12.3 oz, and roughly 2 feet and 4.5 inches tall. Both those numbers are around the 80th percentile for her age. Her head circumference came in at 46cm, which is near the 90th percentile, so she's becoming a fathead like her Daddy. ;-)

Her pediatrician was impressed with how much she's walking (when holding onto someone's fingers), and said that her motor skill development is overall very good. Lungs, limbs, ears, etc. all checked out pretty well.

Now she just needs to shake this cough, and she'll be the model of health!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 07:13 PM | Comments (0)

December 06, 2004

Countdown to Disaster

As described last Wednesday, Dorothy has been walking (with assistance) for a couple of weeks now. She can also reliably push herself from her tummy back to a sitting position. The problem with this latter skill is that it's been making it harder to get her to crawl - as soon as we put her on her hands and knees, she pushes herself back to a sitting position. Multiple times, I've knelt over her, and moved her through the entire crawling sequence, one hand and one foot at a time. And if we grab her arms and hold them off the floor and pull them forward, then she's scooted her legs along in a crawling action to keep up. But she hasn't been purposefully crawling. Until now, that is.

On Sunday, I was playing with her in the living room, and she did what Be Prepared: A Practical Handbook for New Dads calls the "Jacknife" crawl - one leg underneath, the other out to the side. She took three crawl "steps" to get to some toy, then sat up! So December 5th seems to be the day she first crawled all by herself, not on her tummy. Then tonight, after getting home from the pediatrician, we gave her some Motrin and she seemed to cheer up. She was on our bed, and crawled a couple of "steps" to get to a piece of paper the pediatrician gave us.

We'd sort of been hoping that Dorothy would wait until after we'd moved out of the house in early January to begin a truly mobile terror, but no such luck. Now we'll have to do the real baby-proofing, only to take it down in 5 weeks.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:55 PM | Comments (0)

Sleep Routines

It's been about a month since the new sleep initiative began for Dorothy. It's had its ups and downs, but we are generally all sleeping better. Or at least we have a routine.

Dorothy starts her bedtime routine around 6:30 or so, depending on when her last nap of the day was. We read some books, nurse (or she gets a big bottle on the days when I'm not home from work yet), brush her teeth, snuggle, and she goes in the crib. She's mostly been falling asleep pretty fast, only occasionally protesting the initial bedtime. She usually wakes up around 10 PM and complains for a little while - sometimes a single token cry, and sometimes up to 5-10 minutes of off-and-on fussing. We haven't been going to her for this one, since she doesn't seem to be hungry, and we want her to learn to go to sleep on her own. She usually wakes again sometime between 11:30 and 12:30, and I feed her then. She's been sleeping for almost exactly four hours after that feeding, waking up between 3:30 and 4:30 for a second feeding. Then she sleeps for two hours, or maybe two and a half if we're lucky. So some mornings she's up at 5:30, and some at 6:30 or occasionally even 7:00. If it's 5:30, I usually bring her to bed to feed again and end up falling asleep myself for a little while. I don't know if she dozes off or just plays until we wake up.

Of course, all this is out the window when Dorothy is sick. Right now, she's coughing at night, and sometimes waking herself up. I just went in to nurse her a little and help her get back to sleep (at 9:15 PM), and I expect to do it several more times tonight. Then we may need to go through a few more nights of fussing and complaining when she gets better, but still expects the constant attention. I'm hoping we'll be able to eliminate the 4 AM feeding sometime in the next month, so I only have to get up once at night, but we'll see how it goes.

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 09:26 PM | Comments (0)

December 05, 2004

Help! I've Sat Up and I Can't Lay Down!

Recently, Dorothy has started practicing new motor skills, such as crawling etc., in the middle of the night (a normal activity for babies). Last night she practiced sitting up. Of course, she was tired, but she didn't know how to lay back down to go back to sleep, so she'd start fussing, and eventually Elizabeth would go see what was going on. Dorothy of course can fall back to horizontal, but she hasn't yet purposefully laid down by herself. So Elizabeth was helping her to lay back down (at least sometimes). We'll see how quickly she learns...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 07:27 PM | Comments (0)

November 19, 2004

Flipping Over

Dorothy has become quite mobile in her crib lately. She seems to have a preference for orienting herself 180 degrees from where she starts. We regularly find her with her head pointing towards the foot of the crib, and often with her head almost AT the foot. Sometimes she only makes it 100 or 120 degrees (clockwise as seen from above). I haven't seen her go past 200 degrees, so I think she really just prefers to face the other direction...

Oh, and she's regularly sleeping on her tummy now. Yes, the horrors, we're such evil parents, blah blah blah.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:42 PM | Comments (0)

November 13, 2004

Sleep Update

Wow, no blog posts since Monday - you must think that we've dropped dead from sleep exhaustion and/or infant wailing. In actuality, things aren't too bad.

On Monday night, Dorothy stopped crying within 15 or 20 minutes after I posted the blog entry. After that, I think she woke up at 1am to eat, and then again at 4am. Then she didn't wake up until sometime after 6:30am, which is "late" for her! :-)

Since Monday, things have been going OK. She's been getting at least one "long" (for her - 1 hour or longer) nap almost every day, along with one or two half-hour naps. She might fuss and cry a bit when put down for a nap, but it doesn't last long at all. At night, she often goes to sleep for the first time without any crying at all (even before we started the "let her cry" campaign, she would very frequently fall asleep without much help or coaxing). She's generally been waking up at 10pm, and perhaps one or two other times before midnight, to creak and fuss and maybe cry for a while. But even that isn't continuous - she cries more in an "on-again, off-again" pattern. After midnight, she's mostly only been waking up to eat.

During the daytime, she's been her normal, happy gurgly self. And now that Elizabeth and I are starting to get better, less-interrupted sleep, we're much happier. Dorothy doesn't have to rely quite so much on her cuteness to keep her alive anymore. ;-)

Posted by Tom Nugent at 02:57 AM | Comments (0)

November 07, 2004


In addition to eating half-Cheerios for a little while, Dorothy has also been grabbing at them when left on the tray in front of her. But she hasn't put them into her mouth - she just grabs them (mostly with her fist, but occasionally with her thumb and forefinger) and looks at them.

That changed today. For the first time, not only did she grab a half-Cheerio with her thumb and forefinger, she then put it into her mouth and extracted her hand without the Cheerio attached! Of course, successive attempts mostly involved having a Cheerio in her fist and stuffing her fist into her mouth (which did not leave a Cheerio behind), but at least she fed herself a Cheerio properly once!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:03 PM | Comments (0)

November 06, 2004

A Six-Pack of Teeth

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, Dorothy has been getting more teeth. The top lateral incisors (i.e., 2nd-from-front incisors) on both sides now appear to be mostly out. They've been slowly emerging day by day, so it's hard to say when they were officially "out," but they've been out since at least earlier this week.

Behind them, what I'm assuming are canines have poked through "sideways" out of her gums way way up. They haven't made any sign of descending, though, so maybe they'll just hang out for a while.

So yes, Dorothy now has six teeth, with two more threatening. Her smiles are no longer gummy - they're goofy & teeth-filled now!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 04:42 PM | Comments (1)

November 04, 2004

Rollin' Rollin' Rollin'

Not content to do a bit of rolling around in the living room, at daycare today Dorothy supposedly rolled halfway across the room (maybe 10-12 feet) and then most of the way back! But that must have been tiring, because she then fell asleep, with the phone in her hand. :-) The daycare teachers claim to have taken photos, and I can't wait to see them. But it sounds like she's becoming somewhat mobile quicker than we'd expected.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 07:05 PM | Comments (0)

November 03, 2004


OK, Dorothy's not crawling yet. She's not even commando-crawling or purposefully skooching (or is it "scooching"??). But she is definitely getting to be a bit mobile.

This morning (6am, I think it was), I set her in a sitting position in front of the couch. She's been getting more comfortable being on her tummy as she tries to grab stuff, so I let her roll forward onto her tummy to grab a toy. She then proceeded to slowly, a bit at a time, roll multiple times in the same direction until her head was against the entertainment unit (call it, maybe, five feet away), where she could start grabbing at the vertical fan. Luckily the fan base was wide, so she couldn't pull it over onto herself, but it reminded me of all the small things that need still to be done to baby-proof the house. :-P Eventually she turned the corner and started heading towards the dining room, adding a few more feet to her trip length. The going was harder once she got off the living room carpet, though, because her pajamas were very slippery on the wooden floor. She was more likely to push herself backwards with her palms during the times she was on her tummy.

Place your bets now as to whether she'll be totally mobile by Thanksgiving, and which modality (crawling, rolling, walking, flying, etc.) she'll be using.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 11:23 PM | Comments (2)

October 25, 2004

Pooping It All Away

Last Thursday, Dorothy pooped six times at daycare. On Friday, she pooped five times at daycare. These were in addition to the minor poops she had in the morning before daycare (one per day). On Saturday, she had four and a half poops. Sunday, she finally got some rest, although a small diaper rash had developed and was hard to eliminate (no pun intended).

When we went to the doctor last Tuesday to see if she had an ear infection, they weighed her in at 18 pounds, 14.4 ounces. After all this pooping, I think we need to re-weigh her - she must be back down to 12 pounds! :-O

The ladies at daycare seem to think that Dorothy is just pooping more because she's been having pears and peaches for her solids lately, plus we'd added a bit of water to her milk. Elizabeth and I think that she's just clearing out her system after having had only teensy tiny poops for a couple of weeks. We'll see how she does over the next day or two to find out the answer. If she's not done with the heavy pooping by now, then she's well past "cleaned out" and into "holy cow!" territory.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 12:33 PM | Comments (0)

October 24, 2004

Teeth Everywhere!

I know how much everyone prefers hearing about poop instead of teeth ;-) but you'll just have to wait to hear the latest poop escapades. Right now I need to tell you about the invasion of the teeth.

As Elizabeth mentioned in the comments to "Symmetrical Again", Dorothy's first two teeth, the bottom front incisors, came in around August 20th. Next the top two front incisors were bulging from behind the gums, but it took until October 7th before one of them finally showed itself. It took until October 21st for the second top front incisor to show up.

Now, suddenly, there appear to be at least three more (possibly four) either on the verge of erupting, or already showing enamel. The odd thing is, if they are teeth, they're coming "out of order." According to Elizabeth, after the top front incisors, the bottom second-from-front incisors are normally next. But this weekend, we saw what appeared to be top canines and possible the top second-from-front incisors all poking some white out. I haven't yet taken a picture, since seeing these putative teeth requires pulling her upper lip up and back. If they're still visible over the next couple of days, I'm going to try.

UPDATE: Apparently Elizabeth was wrong. It seems the top lateral incisors (second-from-front incisors) are next after the top front incisors. And according to this site, the canines don't come in until almost 2 years of age! But the front molars do come in after the lateral incisors, so maybe we're seeing those instead of canines. Or maybe they're another set of cysts (perhaps "Epstein's pearls"), like she had back in July.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:12 PM | Comments (0)

October 21, 2004

Symmetrical again

Dorothy got her first upper front tooth a couple of weeks ago, but the second one has been ready to burst through for quite a while. Today it finally did. She didn't have a tooth there when we dropped her off at daycare this morning, but she did when I put her to bed tonight. And it's sharp - sticking your fingers in there to check on her teeth is like sticking your hand in a meat grinder sometimes.

So you can expect to see more toothy smiles in the Gallery soon!

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 09:05 PM | Comments (3)

Poop Day!

For the last week or two, Dorothy's poop has been relatively dry, small and solid (as opposed to pasty). That and her frequent arching of the back made us suspect she was constipated, but of course she's not able to just tell us "give me the prunes!" Since she was producing at least some poop every day, it wasn't cause for concern. Over the last couple of days, we've tried to reduce the amount of rice cereal (which has iron, a possible cause of constipation) and increase the fruits & veggies she eats, switch over to peaches and pears which help free up the poop, and add some water to her milk.

None of the changes were major, and we hadn't broken out the prunes yet. It's a good thing we didn't. Today at daycare, she had six bowel movements! SIX! I'm so glad today wasn't a Tuesday. :-) We'll see how she does tomorrow, but hopefully her system is cleared out and she's feeling better.

In related news, last night was the first night that Dorothy approached a pre-Seattle-trip sleep schedule. Our first few nights back in town sucked, because she'd wake up every two or three hours screaming and needing to be nursed. Last night, she at least slept until midnight before waking for the first time. We'll see how she does tonight.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:59 PM | Comments (0)

September 25, 2004

Standing Up

Dorothy has been able to stand with assistance for a very long time. And if you let her grab your fingers and held them above her and pulled a bit, she's even been able to pull herself to a standing position for a while - since before she was 4 months old, I think. Today she achieved the next milestone.

Dorothy's latest trick is to stand up almost entirely on her own. Earlier today I was on the bed with her sitting in front of me. Because our waterbed has a pillow top, it's very soft and pliable, so she can sink her feet into it. Because my weight was close to hers, she was tilted a bit forward towards me. I had my hands sort of lightly around her torso. She scrunched her feet almost under her, leaned forward a bit more, and then using only a little light pressure on my hands, she pushed herself to a standing position! It was very impressive to see.

Now if we could just convince her to get interested in crawling before she starts to walk...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 07:39 PM | Comments (0)

September 24, 2004

Baby Conspiracy

One of the other girls in Dorothy's daycare class, Sarah, is about a month younger than Dorothy. This morning they were both sitting on the floor at daycare, facing each other and having fun. Then Dorothy leaned down and started pulling Sarah's sock off! It's bad enough that we parents have a hard time getting our babies to keep their own socks on - now the babies are conspiring to help each other get their socks off!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:15 PM | Comments (0)

September 15, 2004

The onset of mobility

Dorothy cannot crawl, or even "creep" (also known as "commando crawling") yet. But she's discovering a way to move herself around, albeit very slowly. If she sits up and bounces up and down, she can gradually scootch her butt forward across the floor. She probably takes 5-10 minutes to progress a foot, but hey, it's still progress. So far, this newfound mobility just means that she can move away from the pillow sitting behind her, so that when she loses her balance and topples over, she bonks her head. :-( But hopefully there are better things soon to come!

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 12:42 PM | Comments (0)

September 14, 2004

6-month check-up

Dorothy had her six-month check-up today. The doctor seemed to think Dorothy is doing just fine. She's been taking some of the developmental milestones a bit out of order (e.g., sitting up unassisted before rolling over), but it's not a problem. She reiterated the need for consistency in bedtime and putting Dorothy to bed before she's asleep to help us get her to stay asleep through the night.

In the "Department of Vital Statistics" Dorothy's weight was 17lbs 15.3oz, and her height was 26 inches, both of which are pretty good.

Today's exam was another one where Dorothy got four shots, which of course did not make her happy. But she recovered well, and we went shopping at Costco afterwards.

She now gets a three months' break (instead of two) until her next exam & shots. What a merry Christmas gift that will be....

Update: Oh, and her head circumference was 44cm, I believe. I forgot to add that in earlier.
Correction (9/15): Head circumference was 44.5cm.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:55 PM | Comments (0)

September 13, 2004

This is so much nicer

Dorothy got her second "solid" food last night - pureed green beans. We thought it was going to be a disaster, since she started crying as soon as I strapped her into the high chair, while Tom was heating her food. Since she was so unhappy, we decided to feed her sitting in my lap, instead of in the chair (I was wearing my grungy clothes anyway).

She didn't want to let the spoon in her mouth for the first bite or two, but then she really seemed to get the hang of it. She started opening her mouth as the spoon came near, and actually gobbling down the veggies without spitting much out at all. She did get a moderate amount on her and my hands at one point when she grabbed the spoon, but then she licked it pretty much all off my hands and then hers (and she didn't get any on my clothes, and not too much on her bib, either). We only fed her 1/3 of a jar, but she ate it all, and probably would have taken more if we'd offered it.

We don't know whether green beans taste better than carrots, or she feels safer in my lap and more willing to try new things, or whether she's just a week older and more mature (doesn't sound like much, but a week is 4% of her life!). Or maybe she was just in a better mood. We'll try again tonight, and maybe change one or two of the variables, just to see how she responds.

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 11:31 AM | Comments (0)

Open Again for Business

After giving Dorothy carrots for 3 days last week, we took a hiatus from solids again, since she wasn't very interested in them. Last night, we decided to try again, this time with green beans. I don't know if it was the different flavor, or the fact that a week had passed, or simply having Elizabeth hold Dorothy in her lap rather than putting her in the high chair, but we had success! The first few spoonfuls met with a closed mouth and lack of interest, but Dorothy didn't spit any of it out (which isn't to say that it was completely mess free, however). She eventually started opening her mouth when she saw me bringing in the next spoon-load of green beans. We were so excited (and relieved!) to have her be a willing participant in the solid-food experience, rather than having to cram them into her mouth. Who knows if things will go on this way? We'll find out tonight!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 11:23 AM | Comments (0)

September 11, 2004

Sleep is for the weak

My mother estimates that my brother slept about half as much as I did when we were children. I still have trouble if I don't get 8-9 hours a night. Unfortunately, I think Dorothy takes after Jeff, not me.

Dorothy started off pretty well on the sleep front. By ten weeks or so, she was reliably getting one five-hour stretch in every night, which is pretty long for a baby that age. (In fact, an uninterrupted five-hour stretch is the medical definition of "sleeping through the night" for a baby). But she pretty much hasn't stretched it out any longer than that, even now. She's had one or two nights where she slept for six or more hours, but it's usually five or less. The problem is, since she's been going to bed around 8:00 or so, and we are often up two or three hours later than that, we don't really get to enjoy the long stretch of sleep.

We started trying to change that using a technique that had been recommended to us by a couple of people. We'd wake her up around 11:00 to feed, and then not feed her until 5:00 AM. The theory is that after a few nights of adjustment, babies will get used to having their long stretch around midnight to five, so the adults can get some quality sleep then.

Dorothy adapted pretty quickly to going six hours without eating. She complained a bit, but certainly wasn't inconsolable. However, she didn't want to make the next step of actually sleeping during all that time. Since I need to go to work in the mornings and Tom at least has the option of taking a nap, he does most of the nighttime parenting, except for feedings (I've learned how to feed her lying down, so I can at least doze or sometimes even go all the way to sleep). We (he) stuck it out for a couple of weeks, but she just didn't want to sleep at night any more - she wanted to play, and if there was no one to play with her, she wanted to scream. What's worse, her regular bedtime became kind of unpredictable, and I started sleeping less because it didn't seem worth it to go to bed at 10, just to get up at 11 to feed the baby, so I would just stay up until 11.

We've more or less abandoned the not-letting-her-eat-until-5, and she's slowly readjusting. The last night or two, I've gotten up to feed her twice, but she's otherwise slept pretty well. But last week, she woke up every night sometime between 2:30 and 3:30 demanding play. She wasn't fussy; she just wanted to make loud happy noises. I slept on the couch a couple of nights, since I wake up to her sounds very easily when we're in the same room. Poor Tom was so exhausted I don't know how he made it through the days.

It doesn't help that she doesn't take the two or three long naps that babies her age are supposed to take during the day, either. Instead, she's been sleeping in 30-minute catnaps every couple of hours. It used to be that you could set your watch by her - at 31 minutes, her eyes would fly open and she'd be totally awake. In the last few days, now that she can roll over reliably, we've started putting her down to sleep on her side or her tummy, and she sometimes sleeps a little longer that way. But she rarely naps for as much as an hour at a time, even then.

The one way that she will sometimes sleep for longer is if she sleeps with me. In fact, she'll often sleep for two hours or more if I lie down with her. But I don't sleep well when I'm holding her. Since we're in a waterbed, I feel nervous about her not being able to lift her head enough to breathe if she rolls onto her tummy. So I hold her with her head pillowed on my shoulder. This is comfortable for the first hour or so, but then I start dying to roll over. By the time she wakes up, I have stiff aching muscles from staying in the same position for so long, and I don't feel a bit rested.

So we still don't really have a solution for sleep yet. In our tracking of her sleep patterns, we estimate that Dorothy sleeps a total of about 11-12 hours out of 24, which is somewhat less than average for a baby of her age, but not totally out of the ballpark. But we just don't know how to get her to sleep in a way that lets us get enough sleep, too.

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 10:27 PM | Comments (0)

September 05, 2004


Dorothy has now had her first "real" food - that is, a pureed version of something that an adult would eat (unlike the rice cereal, which is appealing only to silverfish - it tastes like library paste).

She's had carrots at dinnertime for two nights now. We probably managed to get a teaspoon or two of it into her each night, which is actually pretty good for a first baby food. That's in addition to the couple of teaspoons that decorated her face, hands, and bib each time.

She doesn't absolutely hate the carrots, but she doesn't like them much, either. It takes progressively more and more antics from Mommy and Daddy to make her open her mouth for another bite. She discovered pretty early on that we couldn't stuff a spoon in her mouth if she pursed her lips, but she couldn't help smiling a big open smile if we made enough faces and silly noises. Eventually she had to refuse to look at us to avoid having to grin and let us poke another spoonful into her mouth.

We stopped feeding her before she got really upset, since we don't want her to associate food with stress and unhappiness. I think it will take a little while before she really likes the solid food, but she's not too unhappy so far. Of course, we haven't seen a carroty diaper yet, which might dim Mommy's and Daddy's enthusiam for the whole project. ;-)

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 11:17 PM | Comments (2)

September 01, 2004

August 31st, A Day of Events

It seems like Dorothy did a whole bunch of stuff yesterday. Rolling over, feeding herself, sleeping on her tummy, and staying up all night - it was quite a day!

In the morning, I gave her some tummy time and tried to get her to learn to roll over. She'd done it twice in five minutes a couple of weeks ago, and then not at all (at least not without major assistance) since then. Yesterday morning changed all that. She rolled from her tummy to her back (with her left side going up and over) at least 8 or 10 times, half of which were without any assistance at all (the other times I put my hand by her foot so she could push off more easily)! She showed her new "trick" to her Mommy last night and to the ladies at day care this morning.

In the evening, when I was giving her a bottle, she tried grabbing the bottle. I placed her hands around the bottle, and she was able to hold it up all by herself (previously, when trying to hold the bottle, she'd push it sideways out of her mouth). She in fact held it for practically the entire feeding (5 ounces). It was only the very end where I had to help hold it, to ensure she got every last drop.

Since she'd been so successful rolling over earlier in the day, and could in fact support her front weight on her hands (i.e., not her elbows - her arms were straight), I decided to try getting her to nap on her tummy. My mom had given her two naps in one day on her tummy back at the end of July (and I just realized that I never wrote that event up). She slept for 1.5 and 2 hours each time that day, which was very impressive, given that Dorothy normally sleeps for 30 minutes per nap. Unfortunately, that night she woke up at 3am and didn't want to sleep. We weren't sure if it was the long naps or other stuff going on at that time that caused her to be so awake at 3am. Anyway, I decided to try again. The first time I got her to sleep on her side, and she went for 50 minutes. Pretty good. For the next nap, I got her onto her tummy, and she slept for one hour and 20 minutes! Great!

Not so fast. I don't know if it's connected or not, but Dorothy proceeded to wake up just before 3:30am. I'd been working late, and didn't get to bed until almost 2am, plus I was 'on duty.' Dorothy wasn't upset at all. She was just very awake, and wanting to play. Giving her a pacifier didn't help her to stay quiet (we don't care in theory if she's awake, as long as she lets us sleep; unfortunately, a babbling baby is hard to sleep through). So I eventually got up (4:30?) and took her upstairs. She proceeded to enjoy sitting up and playing until 5:45am, the little twit. ;-)

The average amount of sleep she's been getting has been averaging around 12 hours per day, plus or minus an hour. One of the baby sleep books we have suggests that babies her age average 14-15 hours of sleep per day, with 2-3 daytime naps of 1-2 hours. So she's not at all "average." But she's been relatively consistent, and seems happy, so we're not stressing too much about her not getting enough sleep (the only stress we have is from the ways her "under"-sleeping causes us to suffer from lack of sleep).

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:58 PM | Comments (0)

August 29, 2004

Solid Food, Try #2

We made our second attempt at feeding Dorothy solid food today. It went much better than last time. She was in a much better mood to start with. And she not only took the spoon with rice cereal in her mouth, but she also swallowed a bit of it! Maybe a whole 2ml, or 0.05 ounces! :-)

The surprising thing was that she'd see the spoon, and then she'd open her mouth, just like that. At least for the first half-dozen or so tries. I think she even opened her mouth before and after she'd had a taste of the rice cereal.

Now we just need to keep trying a bit on her every day for the next week. After that comes the baby paste fruits!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:45 PM | Comments (0)

Raspberry delight

Dorothy learned to blow raspberries a few weeks ago. For a few days, she was obsessed with doing it all the time, then she seemed to sort of forget about it. But the other day, I was blowing raspberries at her to try to distract her when she was fussy, and I apparently reminded her of it, because she's been doing it to us more again.

This morning, she was sitting up with me in the living room, and the oscillating fan was on. For a few cycles, she looked very surprised each time the fan turned to blow on her, but didn't seem to know what was going on. Then she noticed where the air was coming from, and intently watched the fan go back and forth for a little while. Finally, she must have decided that it was trying to play with her. Each time the fan would turn to blow on her, she would blow raspberries back at it! Then she would giggle until it turned back to her again.

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 09:54 PM | Comments (0)

August 25, 2004

Dorothy Update

Dorothy's fine today. She had some big and weird-smelling poops early this morning, but for the most part she seems to be fully recovered from whatever was going wrong last night.

When I got her home from daycare this evening, I plopped her down on the living room floor. She sat up, all by herself, for 10 minutes straight without any assistance. There were a few times I thought she'd fall, but then she caught herself. She might have used the pillow behind her to keep from falling back, but if so, she didn't go far.

But now that she's sitting, I need to get a replacement for her bouncy chair because she's not supposed to use it when she can sit up....

Posted by Tom Nugent at 11:06 PM | Comments (0)

August 24, 2004

So-called Solid Food

Dorothy's pediatrician recommended starting her on solid foods at her last visit, in the middle of July. We weren't in such a rush, given the research we've seen that suggests waiting until closer to 6 months can help reduce chances of developing food allergies. But after buying her a high chair a week ago, and having had solid foods (rice cereal and a jar of sweet potatoes for babies) sitting on the counter since late July, we decided on Sunday that two weeks short of her six month birthday was close enough to try the food.

The Sunday evening attempt can be quickly summed up in two words: abject failure. I had a suspicion before we got started that it wasn't going to go well, because Dorothy was being fussy and seemed to need to pacifier. As soon as I'd take it out of her mouth, she'd start making noise and getting upset. Trying to stick a spoon with rice cereal on it certainly didn't improve her attitude. We'll wait a week and then try again. We've read online posts by some other parents talking about their kids not wanting solid food until 7 or even 9 months old, so we're not really worried yet. And we're not going to force solids on her any time soon.

The rice cereal instructions said that for baby's first feeding, the cereal should be diluted 1:4 with breastmilk, water, or formula. Later on, you just mix it up to whatever consistency you (actually, the baby) prefers. Now, even "thick" cereal is like oatmeal, and relatively liquid-y. But at 1:4 dilution, it's barely distinguishable from plain breastmilk. Besides getting the flavor of the cereal and the feel of the spoon in her mouth, I'm not sure that Dorothy would actually have gotten anything out of the cereal itself, even if she did keep any of it in her mouth...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:04 AM | Comments (1)

August 21, 2004

Sleep Update

I was mistaken the other day when I said Dorothy had slep for seven hours Thursday night. In fact, it was just short of eight hours.

Friday night, she slept for just over five hours, until we woke her up just before midnight. She nursed, then went back to sleep for another seven plus hours!

In total, she slept about 11.6 hours Thursday night, and 12.1 hours Friday night. She also took quite a few long naps during the day today. She had some trouble falling asleep tonight; we'll see if the teething starts to interfere with sleep.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:15 PM | Comments (0)

August 20, 2004

Kickin' It Into Gear

After a placid and happy couple of months during which there wasn't much in the way of major developmental milestones to notice (she mostly just drooled more, and slowly got better at sitting up), Dorothy suddenly seems to be kicking things back into gear. Within the last 24 hours we've had a couple of cool things happen.

First, Dorothy was sitting up unassisted for a relatively long time. But the cool thing is that, while sitting, she looked down at a toy block, reached for it, grabbed it, picked it up, and then put it into her mouth. So she was effectively doing three things at once. That may not sound like much to you, Mr. I'm-An-Adult-With-A-Fully-Developed-Brain, but for a baby it seems pretty impressive. She now has enough spare brain power to be able to leave the "sit up" control function idling in the background while grabbing stuff and getting it to her mouth.

Second, Dorothy's got a tooth. Or maybe two teeth, it's hard to tell. But this morning, while rubbing my finger over her lower gum, I noticed something that felt sharp. It was hard getting her tongue out of the way long enough to see, but we think we saw a tiny white bump down there. And Krissy at daycare felt Dorothy's lower gum (with rubber gloves on, because they're very good about controlling germs) and agreed that it's a tooth.

The sudden appearance of teeth (well, nubs at the moment) may explain her odd sleep behavior last night. When I picked Dorothy up from daycare, she'd just started napping. With only 20 minutes asleep before I took her home, I tried getting her to nap around 6:30pm. She'd sort of fall asleep, then she'd cry out, and half wake up. I'd soothe her, and she'd be instantly back asleep. I went out to fix myself some dinner, and she'd keep occasionally crying, but by the time I got in to see her, she was already quiet and back asleep again. This went on for more than 15 minutes before she was finally asleep and quiet for good. Perhaps it was the teeth that were irritating her.

But then she slept, and slept. I'd expected her to wake up within an hour. We decided not to wake her for a feeding. She wound up staying asleep until nearly 10:30pm, which means she was asleep for 4 hours and had gone almost 6 hours since her last feeding. Elizabeth nursed her, and Dorothy went right back to sleep. Then she slept for 7 hours - a new record!

I'm not sure we can expect this new, longer sleep cycle to be the new norm just yet, since it may be tied into a growth spurt (of teeth instead of overall) or something. But it sure was nice...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 12:29 PM | Comments (0)

Report Card

The other day, Dorothy got her first report card. I know there's been a big push for accountability in schools recently, but this is ridiculous! :-)

Actually, she got a progress report. Apparently the kids at her daycare center get them every 3 months. The teachers report on what skills children usually develop around the baby's current age, and how she's doing on those various skills. So Dorothy (who was just over 5 months at the time) got a report on 3-6 Month skills. Overall, Dorothy is doing well. There were three levels of marking: "M" for "Mastered", "I" for "In Process" and "N" for "Not Even Close" (well, OK, maybe "N" stood for something a bit more tactful-sounding).

Dorothy only got 2 "N"s out of roughly 30 skills, one in "pulling herself into a crawling position" (she's still not at all off her tummy), and the other in "laughs at certain sounds" (although I think I've seen a bit of the latter at home). She got a few "I"s, one each in rolling tummy-to-back and back-to-tummy, plus ones in vocalizing consonants, "consistently directs a smile at familiar people," and "fusses when familiar people leave" (although we're not upset that she hasn't mastered that one yet).

Her "M"s were in all the other skills, including ones like "plays with fingers," "kicks actively" (my ribs are testament to that one), "recognizes a face," "coos," "opens mouth at sight of bottle," and "smiles broadly and often."

Babies of course all develop at different rates, and the "I"s and "N"s aren't cause for concern yet. We'll be giving her more tummy time and trying alternative ways to get her interested in rolling over.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 11:54 AM | Comments (2)

August 17, 2004

The World Is Too Interesting

Dorothy just can not take in too much of the world at once. She's been very goofy lately when nursing. She'll latch on for about five seconds, then break off and turn her head 180 degrees to look around at the room. Then she'll notice she's not getting milk anymore, so she'll latch back on for another five seconds. Repeat ad infinitum.

When she's overtired and I'm trying to get her to sleep, she fights it. She looks around the room, taking everything in. I try to hold her face against my chest so that there's nothing to see, but she squirms and fights and turns to look around the room.

The world is just too interesting to look at for sleeping and eating!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 11:49 PM | Comments (1)

August 12, 2004

Sleep Details

We've been tracking Dorothy's eating and sleeping patterns for the last few weeks, sort of like the Trixie Tracker (thanks to Ben MacNeill of The Trixie Update for the inspiration). We think that it's about time she started sleeping a bit more at night, so we wanted to see if we could learn anything from her sleep patterns.

The chart below show her eating and sleeping for over two weeks (note that there are major gaps up through 7/27, and around 7/31). The horizontal axis is time of day, and the vertical axis is the date. The horizontal red bars are when she was asleep (I haven't mucked around with things enough to get them to wrap around to the next day, which is why they extend past midnight on one day, but nothing appears in the 12-2am time for most days). The vertical bars indicate when she ate, and their height is proportional to how much she ate (generally 2-5 ounces per feeding). Blue is for bottle-fed (expressed breast milk) times, and black is for breastfed times (and the amounts are less certain).

She's been averaging almost 30 ounces of breast milk and around 12 hours of sleep per day. One of the sleep books we have suggests that babies her age average 14-15 hours of sleep per day, but she seems to be happy with 12. We'd like it if she got more, but we can't force it on her.

We're still trying different tactics to get Dorothy to sleep longer. Although she will usually wake up about 5 or so hours after her first night-time sleep, she's not necessarily hungry. We've been able to get her to go back to sleep and go for a total of 7+ hours between feedings. But we did learn to NOT wake her up between 10pm and midnight in order to feed her more under the theory that such a tactic would get her to sleep through the night. She would instead wake up around 2:30am and be very awake for at least an hour. :-( Hopefully we'll get to a better sleep schedule by the time she's six months old...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:38 PM | Comments (3)

Girly Scream

After getting home from daycare today, I discovered that Dorothy had a new sound in her chatterbox repertoire. Unfortunately, it's a high-pitched scream-type of sound. :-( So now it's begun: those long years of listening to those only-dogs-can-hear-the-full-thing high-pitched screams that little girls do whenever they get startled. Those screams are one of the few things about little girls that drive me crazy. Who knows? Maybe my sanity won't even survive to be tested by Dorothy's teen years...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:21 PM | Comments (0)

August 10, 2004

Rolling Over

Dorothy rolled over twice today, all by herself! I had her up in my office, on the activity gym. I was laying down on the floor so she could see me, and I just figured we'd get her some tummy time (I had no expectation of roll-overs). She was looking around, and then it was like she just decided to roll over. She didn't even stretch her head way up and around like last time. She just leaned her head over a bit, and pushed with her foot, and voila! She was on her back.

I congratulated her, and then I put her back on her tummy. And again, within a couple of minutes, she rolled over onto her back, but this time she did it in the opposite direction (i.e., she rolled counter-clockwise the first time, and clockwise the second time).

Of course, a few hours later, down on the activity gym in the living room, she was either unable on uninterested in rolling over again. I helped her roll over that time. But she's definitely starting to get the hang of things.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:26 PM | Comments (0)

August 08, 2004

Rolling Over

I think it was more of an accident than not, but today Dorothy rolled over from tummy to back without any help for the first time. I had her on her tummy on the activity gym up in my office. She tried turning her head to look up at something above and behind her. By doing so, her head weight went far enough to one side that it started pulling her over. (Using the head weight is how babies are able to turn over.) She stopped herself a couple of times, but then fwoom! she was on her back. I clapped and encouraged her, to which she laughed, then I flipped her over to do it again. But this time she wasn't quite looking as far around, so I pushed her head a bit farther and helped her roll over a couple of times. I don't know if she learned anything, but she's definitely got strong neck and back muscles.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:06 PM | Comments (0)

August 04, 2004


Lately Dorothy has been blowing bubbles sometimes when she drools. But today she learned to blow raspberries. I don't want to encourage the behavior (much), but it's so funny to have her calmly looking at you, and then have her suddenly exclaim "pbbbllthth!" as if she thought poorly of your clothes. :-) Of course, it doesn't help that we blow raspberries on her tummy a lot...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 11:21 PM | Comments (0)

August 03, 2004

Sitting Up

Dorothy's been doing better and better at sitting up recently. This morning, I found out why you need to strap kids into bouncy chairs:
Yes, that's Dorothy managing to get herself up into a sitting position and leaning way forward in the seat. If it wasn't for the seatbelt she would have toppled forward right out of the chair. She was certainly having fun leaning forward past the toy bar above her head!

Then later in the afternoon, she stayed sitting up, on the floor, completely unassisted, for at least 10-15 seconds before listing to the side. It may not sound like much, but until today, her record was only 1-3 seconds.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:46 PM | Comments (0)

Her First Word?

Dorothy's been talking and babbling quite a bit lately. She now regularly will go on for an hour straight when she wakes up in the morning. Unfortunately, she wakes up by 6am, which means one of us has to get up and take her to a different room so that the other can sleep a bit longer.

But if "word" means "something she says repeatedly" rather than just random sounds, then I'm pretty sure Dorothy's first word is:


(Said in a very high-pitched voice.) I'm going to try to put an MP3 of her sounds up soon. I've been crazy busy lately, and haven't even been able to post as many Dorothy stories as I'd like. But maybe I'll get some more up today during her naps {knock on wood}.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:37 AM | Comments (1)

July 22, 2004

The Calm Before The Storm

I've been meaning to write this blog entry for a few weeks, but never got around to it. I'm writing it now, before it's too late.

Dorothy is, simply put, the happiest baby girl in the world! She goes "goo" a lot (and yes, it really sounds like someone saying the word "goo" unlike with dogs, where "bark" really isn't at all what that sound is like), and smiles. Boy, how she smiles! It's the greatest feeling in the world when she turns her head, looks at you, and a big grin breaks across her face. I really can't put down in words how wonderful it makes me feel to hold her and have her grin and make happy noises at me. We can just go on and on, her making happy noises, me laughing because it's so funny, and she starts making happy noises again.

That all being said, we worry that we're in the calm before The Storm. What storm, you ask? Teething. It may start tomorrow, or it may not begin for a couple of months. But when it comes, I fear I'll lose my happy gurgly little girl for a screaming banshee. We'll just have to wait and see. Until then, I'm having a ball!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:08 PM | Comments (0)

July 13, 2004

Still Growing

Dorothy's pediatrician says that she is a model of health, which is always nice to hear. The doctor said that everything looks good on Dorothy, and she seems to be developing well both physically and in behavioral milestones (e.g., trying to sit up).

Despite fluctuating milk supply as well as consumption lately, Dorothy's certainly been packing on the pounds. She's up to 15 pounds, 8.1 ounces! That means she's been gaining an average of just over 1 ounce per day since her last visit (for her mouth pains) 5 weeks ago. Weight, height, and head circumference are all around the 75th percentile, which is roughly where she's been for months and months. So in the future, if you want to know how big she is, just use the government data, and assume Dorothy's in the 75th percentile group. :-)

Oh, as for her height: we can now use units of "feet" when talking about her height, instead of just inches. :-) She's 2 feet, 1 inch tall. 3 more inches, and she'll be too big for the current car seat.

She got her four shots again today, which of course caused lots of screaming. I had a bottle of milk ready, and gave it to her immediately. She eventually calmed down, but it took longer than last time. Maybe that's because she was getting a bottle instead of a breast, or maybe it's just because she's two months older. In any case, she eventually calmed down, and was in fact asleep by the time I got out to the car. She was so good I went grocery shopping on the way home. She's been pretty out of it all afternoon, which the shots have done to her before.

Her next check-up is at six months. We'll see how enormous she's grown in September!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 06:19 PM | Comments (0)

July 11, 2004

One More Thing...

Dorothy has added at least one new thing to her original repertoire of Eat, Sleep, Poop: Now she can Drool! Her drool production has been ramping up over the last couple of weeks. She's not an actual flood yet, but if she's vertical and without a pacifier in her mouth, then she's usually got a "leaky faucet" kind of steady drip........drip...........drip....... going on.

Her mouth is open a lot, which at first I thought was weird, because it would dry me out. Then I realized that she's got so much drool, keeping her mouth open is a good strategy to try and dry things out a bit. I think...

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:44 AM | Comments (0)

June 29, 2004

Oooooh, look! Hands!

Dorothy is discovering her hands. The last few days, she's been "clasping" them a lot, as if she's just found that she can feel one hand when she holds it with the other. And last night, when I was changing her and she was squirming madly, she suddenly became perfectly still. I looked to see what was up, and she was staring with intense concentration at her fist, which she was holding in the air in front of her face. She stared for maybe 5-10 seconds, and then went back to squirming. :-)

Posted by Elizabeth Nugent at 10:00 AM | Comments (0)

June 20, 2004

Dorothy's Weight Profile

Today Elizabeth created this chart, which shows not only Dorothy's weight history, but also some of the percentile ranges. As you can see, after dropping weight right after birth (which is very common), Dorothy's mostly been around the 70-75% range.

At some point it will probably become, um, un-tactful to comment on my daughter's weight. But for now she's too small to care. :-)

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:43 PM | Comments (2)

June 19, 2004

Allergic to Milk Proteins

Back in April, at some point Dorothy developed what seemed (to us) to be a bit of diarrhea. In all other respects she seemed fine, and the doctor didn't seem too worried about it. She said that Elizabeth could try taking all dairy products out of her diet, because Dorothy might be allergic to milk proteins. (Some babies are allergic to cow's milk proteins. Almost no babies are lactose-intolerant, otherwise they wouldn't be able to drink their own mother's milk. But the cow's milk proteins can be in cheese, butter, etc.) Elizabeth did cut down on dairy, but we didn't notice a huge change in Dorothy's poop. Of course, it can be hard to remember what things were like weeks prior, so we could have been a bit wrong.

A month or so later, while seeing the nurse for something else, we asked about the poop, and after taking a look, the nurse said that it was within the normal range for babies. Given that the diarrhea had started right after Elizabeth had switched her granola cereals to one that had nuts in it, we thought maybe it had been the nuts (which are also common allergens). Clearing dairy out of one's system can take weeks, so Elizabeth stayed non-dairy (eventually coming as close to 100% non-dairy as she could) for quite some time.

Then a week or so ago, thinking that perhaps dairy hadn't been the cause at all, Elizabeth used a tiny bit of butter in grilling some foods. We didn't see any change in Dorothy. We decided to try putting more dairy products into Elizabeth's diet. She stopped worrying about breads that had been made with butter. But rather than slowly add in dairy products, and wonder whether or not any given change in Dorothy was due to the dairy change or just a random fluctuation, Elizabeth suggested doing a food "challenge." This is where you suddenly add in a bunch of the suspect food, and see what the reaction is in the baby. If problems develop, then you can be reasonably certain that food was the problem.

So on Wednesday, we ordered pizza (because it has lots of cheese on it). Dorothy seemed fine that night. The next day, Elizabeth had some ice cream after lunch, and in general tried to consume lots of dairy.

As far as we can tell, Dorothy's poop hasn't changed, but she's been sounding extremely congested at night. She'd been like this back in May, too, and congestion can be another symptom of an allergy. After all of us having gotten multiple good nights' sleep earlier in the week, Elizabeth woke me up at 5:30am today to take Dorothy, because Dorothy hadn't been able to sleep since 2am unless she was being held vertical by Elizabeth (which means Elizabeth wasn't able to really sleep much at all).

For the moment, now, Elizabeth is going to go back to a non-dairy diet. I'm wondering if some low levels of dairy (eg. frying with butter) would be OK. In any case, we hopefully (knock on wood) won't have to worry about it for too long. Most babies are supposed to outgrow this type of dairy allergy by around 6 months of age. We're keeping our fingers crossed!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 06:42 AM | Comments (0)

June 15, 2004

Growing Too Fast, Part 2 of 1 Zillion

A little factoid that Elizabeth just mentioned to me (and which I'll provide a citation for if I can find it), posted actually by "hedra" at StorkNet (registration required):

"...infants and young children (up to 3 years, I think), can grow up to 3/4 of an inch in length IN ONE NIGHT!"

Maybe that's the reason why Dorothy suddenly seemed to not fit her 0-3 month clothes anymore... :-O

Posted by Tom Nugent at 03:17 PM | Comments (0)

June 14, 2004

Growing Too Fast (Part 1 of 1 Zillion)

Dorothy is growing too fast! Today Elizabetha and I went through her clothes, clearing out the ones she's too big for (basically, all the "0-3 months" / "up to 12 pounds" clothes) and sorting the next batch ("3-6 months" / "up to 18 pounds" in baby clothing size parlance). It's slightly depressing to think that she only got to wear some of those "old" outfits once or twice, and I don't think she ever wore anything more than a dozen times. :-O If I threw out clothes after I'd used them 5-10 times, I'd always be out shopping for new clothes. Or else I'd be a teenage girl. (Just teasing!)

And yes, I'm sure this theme and the feeling of an always-growing daughter is going to be very familiar for the next, oh, 18 years. I'm not dumb. Just dumbstruck. :-)

Posted by Tom Nugent at 03:31 PM | Comments (0)

June 12, 2004

Sitting up

I think I forgot to mention earlier, but Dorothy's been learning to sit up!


She can grab onto my fingers with each hand, and then if I start pulling her up, she'll pull herself the rest of the way up. She's still wobbly and needs support, but she loves looking around and just being in a sitting up position. When I lay her back down, she'll often quickly start curling her head and legs up, trying to get back into the same position she was in while sitting. So then I pull her back up. Hopefully she'll get the balance thing worked out soon, and then we won't have to let her hang on to us in order to stay sitting.

Posted by Tom Nugent at 10:15 AM | Comments (0)

Extended Acid Trip of Life

Sometimes it seems that the first few months of life must be sort of like an acid trip (not that I'd really know, but I can imagine, right?). This thought occurred to me after reading a book and experiencing some of Dorothy's behavior.

The book What's Going on in There? : How the Brain and Mind Develop in the First Five Years of Life by Lise Eliot, a neurobiologist, is a wonderful summary of what we know about brain development in the early formative years. You learn things like the fact that babies form roughly 2 million synapse connections every second for the first two years of life! (After that, the connections get pared back as the baby learns skills etc.)

Dorothy sometimes gets some really funny facial expressions, including one we call the Stoner look: "Duuuude, that's like, toooootally cool!" :-) In general, you can only imagine what it must be like to develop your senses (such as binocular vision) from the beginning. Imagine suddenly being able to sense magnetic fields with your hair -- that's the best (crude) analogy I can come up with for what it must be like to suddenly realize you have hands and you can sometimes get them near your mouth, or that you can move your head to track something you're looking at, or that you can now see in 3-D, etc. The acid trip must certainly be exciting, though, because Dorothy sure smiles a lot when she experiences new stuff!

Posted by Tom Nugent at 08:26 AM | Comments (0)

May 31, 2004

The 4 Day Poop

Until this morning (Monday, 5/31), Dorothy had not pooped since before noon on Thursday (5/27). Suddenly going a few days without pooping is not uncommon in babies, especially those that are breastfed. It was still disconcerting for us, despite knowing it was OK.

Well, this morning, she finally pooped. Of course, when a 100-year storm hits a city, they probably say something stronger than "it rained." Although in many ways the pooping wasn't at all as bad as the poop explosion, it was certainly extraordinary. Dorothy also managed to have a breach of the containment vessel (i.e., diaper), so she wound up getting an unscheduled bath this morning as well. We all hope she's feeling better after such an ordeal, but to be honest, it's not clear how much the lack of pooping was bothering her. We gotta train this girl to talk so she can tell us these things. ;-)

Posted by Tom Nugent at 09:09 PM | Comments (0)