Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Mighty Fortress is Our House*

The summer has passed in a blur - and what a change from last year. All things considered, we managed to be out and about a lot last summer, despite the oxygen tanks and monitors. This year, we didn't have to drag the paraphernalia, but we did have an almost toddling, strong-willed girl who made everything challenging. We spent much less time at the town pool because it was almost impossible to keep Andrea from drinking the water. She loves swimming, but doesn't know enough to keep her mouth closed or her face up. As a result, I was a nervous wreck every time she headed toward the pool.

Andrea has not yet mastered walking - in fact, she still falls down when she lets go of whatever is supporting her. However, she's a speed demon in cruising, and loves crawling, and we've had to install baby gates throughout our house. There's one at the top and bottom of each set of stairs, plus one between the kitchen and living room and between the kitchen and dining room. There is nothing wrong with Andrea's brain, and we've had to opt for the kind of gates that are fastened to the wall. When we used the other kind, Andrea was actually able to circumvent the gate and head up the stairs.

I think Andrea is making progress in the speech department. She's making more sounds that sound like words. She's got a word for "giraffe" (of course) and will repeat animal sounds. She has a "woo-woo" for a dog, and "tee-tee" for a bird. I think we've got "star" down as "tar", but I'm not 100% sure. She does call me MaMa, but not consistently. Still, we're making progress. Given that the rest of the family are major talkers, we figure she'll catch up soon.

Today's picture is just a cutie that I wanted to share. Andrea has a beautiful rocking chair made by "Uncle Pete" for her first birthday. You can't see its detail in the shot, but it's got a giraffe on the back, and the arms and rockers are painted in jungle leaves and lady bugs. The work is amazing - there's a stuffed monkey sitting on one arm, and her name in glitter letters down the back. Andrea's new favorite game is to climb in and rock herself. We store her "soft friends" in the seat, so the fun begins by pulling everyone off and using them as stepping stones.

* A Mightly Fortress is Our God - Martin Luther