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These photos are actually of Kivrin’s second bath–and just like during the first one, she was content and happy the entire time! *lucky us* Thanks to Aunt Leigh Anne for teaching us the “warm wet washcloth on the belly” trick — it makes for a warm wet baby with only a little bit of water in the tub.

I’m just a few minutes from successfully surviving my first day home alone with the baby — here is how the rest of the week has been going at our house:

 Dan expands his multi-tasking abilities to include entertaining the baby while eating breakfast!

Grandma Sandy’s visit mid-week made Dan’s transition back to work much smoother for all of us!

Behold–Our good friend Sheila’s gift in honor of the baby—a freezer full of specially prepared vegetarian single-serving meals. The local family-based company who delivered the food – Magic Meals Personal Chefs – were delightful folks and their creations are healthy, tasty and convenient! From their website, about their New Baby menu — “Every meal is designed to be eaten with one hand while the other is busy holding a baby. “

This is Kivrin’s picture from the Stormont Vail website — see her birth announcement there. In addition to the price of bread, the stock market and the population on the date of her birth, the site also listed the Topeka sunrise and sunset for that day, which is how we learned that Kivrin was born exactly at sunrise – 6:44 am, on the day she was born!

Although Kivrin doesn’t necessarily wake up at sunrise every morning, she does nurse every 2-4 hours, so I have been awake more between 3 and 7 am in the last few weeks than I had since my last college all-nighters.

These are just a few of the photos from the Sears photo session today (how technologically handy that you can buy the copyright from them and take everything home the same day on a CD!) View the rest of them here.

After we had a not-very-successful attempt at professional newborn photos last week at JCPenney (not enough time to finish nursing first, which made for a very unhappy baby), we tried again today.

Kivrin and I, plus Dan’s mom and our friend Carrie met at the Sears portrait studio this afternoon. For the most part we had a well-fed but wide-awake and happy baby. It was only after several poses in only her diaper that Kivrin got crabby with us. After that traumatic first photo experience with Kivrin, I was so excited to have actual cute photos of my baby that we ordered lots of prints to share with everyone.

I’ll post a few more of the good Sears pictures soon, since the prints won’t be delivered for about 2 weeks. I edited the photo above after Dan called it “arty” — I promise I’m not going to surprise anyone with a blue-tint 5×7 for their living room!

Although Grandma Staley and Kivrin did not have the opportunity to meet each other, several people saw me holding Kivrin at the visitation and told me stories about Grandma showing them Kivrin’s newborn pictures when they visited her. Read Grandma Staley’s obituary in the Belleville News-Democrat here.

Grandma Staley – the originator of the yarn stash, the woman who taught me to crochet.  Coupon cutter, piano player, windowsill gardener and birdfeeder. Prolific correspondent with grandkids, missionaries and just about everyone else she ever met and liked. A watcher of tv game shows and spoiler of babies. When I was a little girl, I didn’t know if I liked red apples or green apples, because I had never seen the skin on the perfectly sliced apple pieces that Grandma would give us in small margarine tubs.

Kivrin will most definitely grow up hearing stories about her Grandma Staley.

Colin was excited to meet his much anticipated “new baby cousin.” He sang her “Happy Birthday” and “Twinkle” and he tickled her toes. While he was holding her, she reached up and touched his face, then turned her open mouth towards him, making him worry that she was trying to eat him!

We tried to take a picture to show the size difference between the cousins — Kivrin is about 2 weeks old here and Colin is about two and a half years old. Colin was enamoured with this hanger though, telling us all that he was “going to hook us”, so this was the best photo we got.

Nana Herring and Kivrin were quite content to spend the afternoon enjoying each others company.

 Kivrin loves to smile at her Papa Staley. He has a theory that babies like him because his beard and bald head make it look like his face is upside down, but we think Kivrin just knows a good thing when she sees it!

 Lissa’s cousin Jon was visiting from Hawaii and happy to greet the newest Staley. Kivrin is swaddled up in a receiving blanket that Nana sewed for her.

Kivrin spent longer in her carseat this afternoon than in the entire rest of her life combined as we drove to Collinsville for Grandma Staley’s funeral. Overall the baby caravan went smoothly, since she slept most of the time but sitting in fast food parking lots to nurse adds a lot of extra minutes to the formerly 5 hour drive. I also survived a spectacular diaper changing failure and Dan came out of Panera’s to find the baby’s outfit soaked, a big mess of stuff scattered in the backseat and mommy in dire need of assistance. A funeral was a sad reason to come home for a visit, but everyone was pleased to meet the newest Staley.

New pictures coming soon.

So now our baby’s really official… at least in the eyes of the government: her Social Security card came in the mail today.

Being assigned her very own number it would seem she’s well on her way to becoming a mindless taxpaying worker drone happy, productive citizen!

Our friend Scarlett is a baby-wearing advocate and she recommended the wraparound baby carriers at Cotton Cradles where we picked out our Hug-a-bub. It’s basically a long stretchy piece of fabric that you use to tie the baby on to yourself, but we already love using it to take walks around the neighborhood and Kivrin immediately falls asleep when she is snuggled up next to us inside it.

My favorite part is the instructional DVD – because the Hug-a-bub is from an Australian company, the woman in the video has a lovely accent and she makes tying on the fabric seem sophisticated instead of frustrating, especially the very first time.

Our family doctor had a special treat for us for Kivrin’s two week check-up. He and his wife made a home visit, he examined the baby right in our living room, plus they brought us a wonderful dinner.

Kivrin didn’t realize how awesome this was —  she was fussy during their visit, but as new parents we very much appreciated this extra special care!

Dan vetoed my suggestion for an inspirational quote for our daughter’s birth announcement, so I am including it here instead:

“Hello, babies. Welcome to Earth. It’s hot in the summer and cold in the winter. It’s round and wet and crowded. At the outside, babies, you’ve got about a hundred years here. There’s only one rule that I know of, babies—God damn it, you’ve got to be kind.” — Kurt Vonnegut in God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater

Here are a few of Kivrin’s current favorite poses —

Stretched out fully to reach for something

Snuggled up in a little baby bundle

Arms flung above her head while sleeping

Relaxing in mommy’s arms

Sleeping on Aunt Leigh Anne’s lap

So, we named our baby after a character in one of my favorite books. When I try to summarize the book in my own words, I tend to use words like “doomsday” and “time-travel” and “the plague” –which don’t exactly capture the essence of the literary reference. People who have read the book before, including a few fellow librarians and my father-in-law, seem to understand why we choose to name our baby Kivrin though.

Doomsday Book by Connie Willis
Copyright 1992 and winner of the Hugo and Nebula Awards

Here is the (more eloquent than mine) description from the back of the book:
“For Kivrin, preparing for on-site study of one of the deadliest eras in humanity’s history was as simple as receiving inoculations against the diseases of the fourteenth century and inventing an alibi for a woman traveling alone. For her instructors in the twenty-first century, it meant painstaking calculations and careful monitoring of the rendezvous location where Kivrin would be retrieved. But a crisis strangely linking past and future strands Kivrin in a bygone age as her fellows try desperately to rescue her. In a time of superstition and fear, Kivrin – barely of age herself – finds she has become an unlikely angel of hope during one of history’s darkest hours. Five years in the writing by one of science fiction’s most honored authors, Doomsday Book is a storytelling triumph. Connie Willis draws upon her understanding of the universalities of human nature to explore the ageless issues of evil, suffering, and the indomitable will of the human spirit.”

A verbal snapshot of Kivrin’s life

  • Kivrin can count to ten! And she does. Frequently! 11 years ago
  • Later, no thank you, now, one more time, almost done, excuse me, please. All powerful words from the mouth of a toddler... 11 years ago
  • Kivrin is two years old today! Happy Birthday baby girl, we are so impressed and amazed by the person you are growing up to be! 11 years ago
  • Toddler logic: Blowing on the outside air on a sweltering day will cool it off enough that mommy will agree it's not too hot for a walk. 11 years ago
  • Toddler logic: Kivrin skinned her knee, therefore her baby doll needs a bandaid. 11 years ago
  • Kivrin switched from the terse "hi" on her play phone to a more elaborate "ay-yo" hello style greeting. Verbal skills increasing daily!!! 12 years ago
  • This morning Kivrin choked on a cracker and made a mess of her shirt/carseat on the way to school. She named the incident her "big cough." 12 years ago

RSS See Colin Grow

  • October 2, 2010 - Apple Holler with the Reas! February 20, 2011
    Colin started his Apple Holler adventure with a donut the size of his head! Brendan, Katie and Colin in the corn husk mazeColin and Mama in the apple orchardBrendan and Colin, buddies since they were born! Who doesn't love bowling with pumpkins?!?

RSS Kate & Family

  • March 14, 2009--St. Pat's Parade
    One Saturday while I was working, Aaron took the girls downtown to see the St. Patrick's Day Parade. They both seemed to enjoy it and have been playing with the beaded necklaces they received ever since. Addison loves looking at all the balloons!

Flickr Photos