I have found taking care of a 4 month old to be very challenging because she is so dependent but wants to explore so bad! This is tough when she is pretty heavy to carry around. But she is somehow getting even cuter everyday and her smile makes me forget about all the work that goes into being a mom. There have been a few firsts for her travel-wise. Trips this month included the Northwest suburbs of Chicago, Minneapolis, and Madison Wisconsin. We also took her to her 2nd movie in the theatre this month and she only made one peep. Lacey is getting more and more aware of her surroundings everyday and also more coordinated (although she looks pretty uncoordinated next to her 8-month-old cousin who is very purposeful with each movement). She is still waking up about twice each night to nurse, but she did sleep a whole 8 hours one magical night, right before she got sick... She has added a couple more consonant sounds to her speech like "guh" and I think she has mastered "muh". Lacey seems to have more control over the volume of her voice and now we often hear her cooing in a way that isn't yelling or crying and it so adorable. She also started laughing this month which is the sweetest sound my ears have ever heard :)
Things to remember:
- We heard her laugh for the first time very briefly at Costco on 4/7 while she watched Brian strapping on the baby carrier to his chest. We both heard the little giggle but neither of us saw it because I was carrying her outwards and Brian had his attention on buckling the straps. The first time we really saw and heard her laugh was when she was being carried by her great-aunt Karen. We heard her laugh from the other room and rushed to try to see it and saw a couple giggles before she stopped. Ever since then, she laughs here and there but Brian and I have not figured out the trick to get her to laugh when we try to make her laugh. Our family members seem to have better luck with it for some reason, I guess Mommy and Daddy aren't funny enough!
- On April 16th, she said her first word (on accident probably, but still!). I had just finished a video call meeting and Brian was holding her her in the living room. I walked into the room and when I made eye contact with her, she looked at me with a pouty lip and cried “ehhhh- Mama!” Brian and I were completely surprised and shocked because she said it incredibly clearly. I will never forget Brian's face and the way he started to tear up, he was such a proud dad. That moment just melted my heart in every way.
- At the beginning of the month, she made her first trip out-of-state to Illinois to visit her grandma and grandpa while I photographed a styled shoot in the morning. It was my first shoot since becoming a mom and in a lot of ways it felt good to get back into the swing of things, but I also missed her like crazy! I'm glad she was able to spend time with Brian's side of our family, including meeting her great-grandparents.
- A couple weeks later she made an even longer road trip to Minneapolis with Brian, my sister, and me to visit my brother and cousins. We needed feeding breaks along the way because it was a 5 hour drive each direction. It was a challenge to travel with a 3.5 month old, but Lacey really was such a trooper. We felt bad that she had been in the carseat for so long, so we gave her a break from it for a few days after that. It was so good to see my brother and my cousins with their almost 8-month-old baby girl :) She and Lacey didn't seem to notice each other very much, but when they did it was super cute! One of the funniest moments was when we were walking down frat row to pick up my brother on the U of Minnesota campus, Lacey was so out of place while Brian carried her in the carseat, a college girl walked by and asked, "Who's baby?" with a confused face. It was hilarious! I love Minneapolis so much and get emotional with nostalgia thinking about my days as an undergrad there.
- Then just last weekend, she had her first trip to a city very special to my husband and I, good ole Madison WI :) Madison is home to our first place together, where we both went to school at the same time (undergrad for Brian and grad school for me), and where we got married almost 2 years ago! So we were very excited to introduce her to that wonderful place. We came because Brian raced in the Lake Monona 20k for the 2nd (and probably last according to him, it was a long race for him haha) time, but we decided to stay 2 nights to enjoy a weekend there. We ate at our favorite places, but I think the food highlight of the weekend was the smoked turkey sandwich from Brasserie V on Monroe St. We walked around a lot (Brian's poor post-20k feet!) including around the Capitol, State St, and Lake Wingra. We also made sure to make a stop on the Monona Terrace rooftop where we had taken our favorite wedding photos.
- She had her first cold this past month :( You wouldn't have been able to tell from her attitude because she was still a happy baby through most of it. I just noticed when she had so much congestion in her nose and she had to breathe through her mouth at times.
- She started sucking and chewing on her thumb this month. I'm not sure how I feel about it yet, but for now I'm not going to try to stop it. We'll just have to make sure her hands are clean at all times!
- She has been super grabby this past month. She can reach out and grab toys and objects with ease now.
- Unfortunately she has also been very grabby/scratchy with faces as well. I often have to block one of her swipes with my thumb which she gladly grabs and brings to her mouth to chew on. Her own face has also been a victim, she has had at least 1 scratch on her face the entire past month. I try my best to keep up with clipping her finger nails every few days, but they grow so fast! I'm glad her little scratches heal up pretty quick.
- Whenever we pull out the phone to catch her doing something cute on video, she stops as soon as she sees it.
- She will look at us and coo “hooo” to get our attention. It was the cutest thing the other day, I was playing with her in the living room while Brian was doing dishes. When I brought her into sitting, she looked over the couch at her dad and did her “hooo” coo from across the room until he looked at her.
- She is getting a lot better at sitting and is able to hold her balance while holding my hands pretty well. She hasn't been able to sit unsupported for more than a split second or two yet, but I'm sure she'll be doing it for longer soon.
- We started trying to give her a bottle regularly every or every other day. She took it a lot easier when she was 2 months, but we are all starting to figure it out again with practice.
What she likes and dislikes:
- She loves toys! Her favorites include: a stuffed giraffe with easy to grip legs, arms, and neck; Oball rattles; burp cloths and dress skirts (lol); and other easy to grip chewable toys from her nana and papa.
- She hated getting her boogers sucked out by the Nose Frida when she was really stuffy and sick :(
- She is fascinated with her toes and it is hard to resist her ab crunch forward in supported sitting when she is determined to touch them. She is reaching and grabbing for them more and more during diaper changes.
- She is very entertained by outside. She is much calmer if I position her so that she can look out the window during tummy time.
- She really doesn't mind bath time anymore. She is starting to get excited when we pour a stream of water from a bucket on her chest.
- She still is content in her carseat as long as she's not hungry.
- She likes to be able to see her surroundings, so she prefers to be held upright and outwards.
- She is enjoying longer and longer periods of tummy time.
- She smiles so big when we say hi to her in the morning. Morning is my favorite time of the day with her because she is so happy. She also has a big smile when her daddy gets home from work :)
- She hates waking up in a room without people around her, so every time I put her down to nap in the other room, she wakes up screaming. However, if she wakes up and we look at her and talk to her when she opens her eyes, she looks reassured and either goes back to sleep or smiles as she wakes.
I think she has mostly grown in length this past month. Here is a side-by-side comparison of her at 3 months old vs 4 months old:
And now, a bunch of photos from this month!
I told you she loves her giraffe...
Lacey and Daddy :)
We had a great weekend in Madison and I think she liked cheering on her dad.
Other times it wasn't very enjoyable for her...
When we were on the rooftop of the Monona Terrace, I couldn't help myself and I tried to take photos in the same spot as our wedding photos by the lovely Katie Ricard. A lot has changed in 2 years!
She loved meeting her great-aunt and great-uncle when they came to visit (our uncle ran away from my camera).
Lacey got to hangout with her uncle, auntie, and my cousins in Minneapolis! She even got to try out some toys :) It was so good to hang out and talk with family who are also new parents, I really needed it.
They are 4 months apart, but nearly the same size lol.
Thank you for visiting, I hope you enjoyed this little update on our lives!