Thursday, April 2, 2009

April 2, 2009 - The Big Five

In Kenya, the "big five" is what the group of the following animals is called: elephants, rhinos, leopards, lions and buffalo. In our house, however, the "big five" means that Grace is five weeks old today!

At five weeks, Grace is prematurely aging. She has horrendous acne like a teenager and a hairline that is receding faster than her father's! Okay okay, so baby acne and hair loss are completely normal but it is funny to me how much those two things can change the looks of a baby so much. The good news is that for the last two days Grace's blocked tear duct has been unblocked (knock on wood) so she no longer has yellow crust or goo coming out of her left eye.

This week Grace has had two really tough days (today included) and two really great days. Monday was her first really bad day - she was just unhappy and inconsolable and just wanted to be held and rocked the entire day (possibly the result of something I ate?). Today began in a similar fashion, and she has gone back and forth between the moods "I will sleep as long as you hold me, Mom" and "It's my party and I'll cry if I want to". [Note: Grace is sleeping in my left arm and I am typing with my right hand alone. Not the fastest way to blog, but it gets the job done.] She is almost getting to be too big for her cradle in our room, which breaks my heart a little! She is only five weeks old! I did try putting her in her big crib today, but that only lasted a little while because of her aforementioned moods. I will certainly be eager to get her updated length and weight stats from the doctor next week.

On Tuesday Grace had a great day! That day she was making the cutest baby noises (she is increasingly not that quiet!) and we think actually smiled in response to our voices and not just gas (a few times yesterday too). I wouldn't go so far as to say that she has mastered a social smile, but I do think she is starting to figure it out. She hasn't rolled over since last week (she has rolled four times in total) and Kristoffer has yet to see her do it so maybe he is starting to think that my parents and I made it all up! In terms of sleeping, I would say that she still sleeps more during the day but she will usually give us one three hour stretch every night along with a couple two hour stretches. She continues to love being in motion and music definitely soothes her. We are also having more success with a pacifier when she is a bit ornery but does not need to eat; she is still eating on demand which can be anywhere from every hour to every two or three (never longer than that!).

In Kenya the rainy season has sort of started - we had two nights of torrential rain this week but yesterday was brutally hot (or at least it felt that way to me and Grace when we went out to meet Kristoffer for lunch). More rain should be coming and the country desperately needs it. In one week we are taking Grace on her first plane ride to the Masai Mara for a two-day safari with my parents. It should be an interesting 45-minute test-drive to see how she does before we take her on really long flights to Denmark and the US in June. My parents come back from Mombasa late this afternoon and I am eager to hear about their beach trip. I didn't receive any emergency phone calls from them so I assume they got along just fine!

Here are some pictures of Grace from this past Sunday after going to church and out to brunch for the first time (she hasn't yet been out to dinner at a restaurant, but she has "done lunch" a number of times so far).

And here are a few pictures of Grace today - reminder that she is not in the best mood, although still cute as a button! And, yes, I did just realize that she is wearing the same onesie both days - whoops (what can I say, both days were a little cool and I went with the long sleeves)! Thanks to Mark, Kate and Brady Andersen for the cute outfit!


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