Life With Riley

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I’ll try and get a scan in after she’s down – or ask Mark to later—
But you tell me what her teacher was going on about in her art from this morning.
They wrote her name in the top corner (it’s a big sheet) and this is what she did at the bottom.
Now, I’m biased, but her teacher saved it for me and all the other teachers were excited too. Plus they were going on about how she knows so many letters and they even scrambled them and she would still know which one was which.
I think we’re in for it… what do you think?

**if you’re scratching your head, if you look at the scribbles, the kid WROTE HER NAME. No, seriously, she did! Not _perfectly_ but hey she’s still getting the idea of which end of the crayon to write with easier!
Seventeen months and 2 weeks old.
Update – 1/25/08 – Dad tried to give the ‘signature’ a scan, here’s the best result that he could come up with:
Riley's first signature!

Riley has had her first Thanksgiving that she actually participated in! Uncle Tim, Aunt Trina, with cousins Meghan and Madison came to NC to eat and have fun! Riley loves her cousins and uncle and aunt, I don’t think she had a minute where someone wasn’t playing with her. I almost fear for her teachers tomorrow, but time has shown she’s done a great job readjusting to daycare after holidays, so hopefully that will continue.
If you check out the flickr link, you’ll see a picture of Riley with Uncle Tim– yes, she went down a big inflatable slide with Uncle Tim and Meghan multiple times! She LOVED it! And I have ammo for the day she ever tries to call me over protective…
In other Riley non-holiday news, we discovered that she actually knows a couple of signs that we can’t figure out where she got them from. I know they use Thank You at school, but turns out she also knows “more”, “please”, and “book”. Yeah, the last one is not a shocker as the kid LOVES to read and loves books! When she starts making the same movements, we can google it and get a translation typically. “More” helps, but hard to figure out what “more” of she’s looking for!
She keeps growing in leaps and bounds– she’s still on the small side technically though, in the 25% for weight/height, but usually pretty healthy. She still has some issues with her ears and tends to get every cold and sniffle that comes within a mile of her, but she rarely lets it slow her down. She loves to play- with her little people, blocks, her piano, her stuffed animals– you can even tell her what to go find– she will find it and bring it to you!
Riles and Daddy have also been talking alot about how to spell Riley– she has a mug that has her name on it and Daddy has gone over it many many times with her. Now, if she’s paying attention to you and you ask her to point out a letter in her name- she usually gets it right! I think we might be in trouble…
Along with finding the letters in her name, she’s also good at finding people in pictures. She loves Seseme Street characters- Big Bird, Elmo, Cookie Monster especially. We were at dinner the other night and they had a “find hidden pictures” on the menu– would you believe Riley at 15 months was able to FIND things in that picture? Look out Where’s Waldo!!!
There’s probably more, I’m just too tired to think right now. Mom and Dad have been under the weather for a while themselves. We’re keeping stock in DayQuil and taking care of each other best we can. This weekend with family was fun and we can’t wait to see everyone again soon in December!!!!!

But as most of you can guess, pretty busy!

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Can you believe it was one year ago today that Riley Anne came into our lives? I can not!

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Just a quick post before heading off to sleep ourselves, but Dad and I wanted to share the newest development in Riley’s life.
She’s been crawling like crazy for the last month or so. When I pick her up from daycare, as soon as she sees or hears me enter the room, she drops to the floor and flies over to me. I admit, it is one of the highlights of my day!
In her quest for mobility, she has been quite content to just crawl. I’d noticed that after she started crawling, she was finally starting to stand “flat footed” rather than on her toes all the time when we’d play. She soon started getting up on her knees to play but that was it. Not the first thought about pulling up on anything at all. Not at home, not at daycare, not on Mom or Dad, nowhere. This weekend she was spending some time in her pack and play (thanks again to the Hyre-Bennett clan!!!) and all of a sudden we look at her and there is a little girl peering over the top of the pack and play at me, big blue eyes and a HUGE grin, STANDING proudly! We were a little shocked that it finally happened- we knew it was coming but to actually see her do it, whoa!
So Riley is crawling and standing and trying to stand without pulling up on anything yet (that’s not going as well as she’d like). She’s babbling, loves to play, loves her dolls/stuffed animals (Belle is still the favorite), loves to play with blocks. She’s figured out how to put stuff in and out of stuff. She also loves playing with her cell phone (a very popular toy at day care, I think most of the kids have one for home now too).
She’s growing up so fast, she’s simply amazing. She’s just the absolute sweetest baby in the world and such a blessing to us. While sometimes I think this first year has just absolutely flown by, I can’t wait to see what she’ll do next. We love our baby girl!!! And for now at least, she really likes us too. 😉

On Saturday, Riles was having some floor time. She was happy playing and was doing some of her usual not crawling but pushing her self backwards on her tummy with her hands. Think reverse Army crawl.
All of a sudden, she saw something she wanted, leaned forward, and STARTED CRAWLING FORWARD. Crawling– as in butt in air, moving forward on hands and knees, real honest crawling. It wasn’t perfect and it wasn’t for long, and she didn’t quite do it as well today– but our girl was crawling.
Of course today she’s decided that she is a big girl who doesn’t need to nap or sleep again, ever! Honestly, she had maybe two catnaps of 15 minutes today and wouldn’t go to sleep till almost 10. Her normal time is by 8:30 and that is with 2 hour or so naps, plus one on the drive home generally during the day!
And to answer Aunt Nancy’s question– CJ’ers are my friends from an online mailing list, Club Jade. If you’re feeling really curious, check out our group blog maintained and updated by dunc. We’ve been together since 1995. Long story short, we’re a group that met online through a mutual love of the Star Wars universe but over the years we’ve branched out from there. Friends who are from or live all over the world and I look forward to seeing them in person every year or every chance we get. Except last year, because our annual con (convention) was the same time Riley was born. Anyways, Riley has a ton of honorary aunts and uncles that I’ll get to see for the first time for most in 2 years this coming week. And we get to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Star Wars while we’re at it. 🙂 I’ll miss Riley and Mark, but I’m just glad that Mark is the type of father and guy who would let me go and realizes how much seeing everyone means to me. Of course, I think it helps that he’s leaving for 2 weeks later might also play a part in it… 😉

Hello! Today brought Riley’s first doctor’s appointment (other than follow up after the tubes went in) in ages! Dr. Sumner even started to make a joke about it but I ruined it. Whoops. However we were all happy because the idea was if we had any doubts about doing the tubes, how great she has been doing since is proof we made the correct decision.
So, drumroll please!
Ms. Riley Anne is 27.5 inches long and 18 lbs 12 oz! Her growth curves look great, she’s right at 50% for height and weight and 55% for head circumference. Overall, she is doing awesome and pleased the doctor with her progress. All this on no afternoon nap and after skipping two bottles today!
Oh yes, apparently Ms. Riley is deciding to have no part of bottles at daycare, however she still hasn’t quite figured out the whole sippy cup thing. In a strange place, that little one! We’re trying different styles, and giving her opportunities at home and at daycare. She’s taken a few pulls but nothing consistent and nothing to get too excited about. We’re confident she’ll figure it out soon- that is one of the things she does best, figuring things out!
Also, in additional news, Riley has found her BFF (best friend forever). If you’ve checked out the pics on the companion blog, Life with Riley in Pictures you may have caught a peek! Riley’s new best friend is a rag doll version of Belle from Beauty and the Beast. Typically Riley is very easy going- if you take something from her, or one of the kids at day care does, she just basically shrugs and goes on to something else. Try and take Belle from her? Oh boy, that does not make Riley happy at ALL. So now we have a Belle for home, a Belle for naptime at daycare, and one to keep back just in case. I can’t say that I’ve ever seen or heard of a kid being so attached to something at such a young age.
Other than the usual, nothing much else going on. I’m getting ready to *GASP* leave Riley and Mark for the first time overnight since Riley was born. I go back and forth about it in my head, but everything is set for the trip. I’ll be heading out to Celebration 4 in Los Angeles, working as a volunteer and seeing my fellow CJers. We’ll have a great time I’m sure, but I am going to miss Riley and Mark terribly.
Time for bed, hope all is well with everyone and as always, feel free leave a comment! If you ever have a question about Riley or how she’s doing, feel free to comment or email Mark or I. 🙂 Sometimes we just need a little prompting to get to writing..,

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