Monday, May 25, 2009

Blast Off to Summer

(from Terri)
Ro, Radha, and I spent the Memorial Day weekend very leisurely before our big trip back to the Midwest (Quad Cities, Illinois-Iowa area). Thanks to some good (and very generous!) friends of ours, we finally had the time to try out a hiking carrier pack and go on our first family hike.

Since this was our first trial with the carrier, we decided to take things easy. We headed to Oaks Bottom Nature Preserve within town. Radha was intrigued as we started the hike, wondering when the spaceship would lift off. "Where's the warp speed on this thing, Dad?"

Away we went! The "tent" cover for her head was great sun protection, especially since Radha prefers playing peek-a-bool with hats rather than wearing them. Of course, living in Oregon this will also be a handy rain protector on rainy days.

Can you spot the rare species, Cutius Babius Evahius, among the trees?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Bittersweet Thoughts This Mother's Day

(from Terri)
It's official.  My daughter is growing up much too quickly than I would like.

The past few weeks have included several milestones (including the three birthday celebrations for Radha turning the big 1.0...the small, private family affair, the joint birthday party with Radha's playgroup friends, and then a big party with friends and family), news that space opened up for Radha to attend a new daycare that we've been hoping for, a visit from her Bhua Vandana, her one year check-up (including a traumatic bloodraw for her and I both!) and the second Mother's Day (I honestly cannot remember last year's Mother's Day since I was still in a post-partum blur).  Thanks to Ro, for Mother's Day I had a lovely weekend of lunch outing and shopping with a friend, gardening time with Radha and Ro playing on a picnic blanket nearby, and a tasty pesto pasta dinner that required no help from me.

(Btw, more pictures from Radha's birthday party here and pictures from her playgroup friends' joint birthday party here)

All these activities have been fun (well, minus the pediatrician check-up!) but lately I've been reflecting on more emotional milestones.   Last weekend we gave her a bottle of just cow's milk as an experiment.  I didn't expect her to drink it so eagerly (!).  But she did.  And then a wave of bittersweet emotions came over me along with a few silent tears.  Just like that, the weaning process has begun.  "Wait...she doesn't need me anymore??"

I know it's part of the natural weaning process, this is what is "supposed to happen" yada, yada, yada.   I feel incredibly lucky that I reached (and exceeded) my goal to breast feed Radha for a year.  It certainly hasn't been easy at times (Ro knows all too well about my many late evening frustrations with pumping) but I felt the benefits were with it to make it work.  And while I haven't completely stopped breast feeding and pumping altogether, it's become much less a part of the day for Radha and myself both.

Now that my little girl is beginning to show some signs of independence (and so much more on the way, I know) I look back at the old pictures of her and I am blown away how fast the past year has gone by.  Are they all going to go by so quickly?