Thursday, December 9, 2004

13 months

Dec. 9, 2004
    Halle is now 13 months old!  Her Birthday, Nov. 9, was not such a good day for her.  She was really ornery and mad.  But, she got a new book and the baby Einstein duck puppet, which she absolutely loves!  We threw her a birthday party a few weekends later down in American Fork so all the grandparents, aunts, uncles, Bridger, and friends could come.  We had a great time there.  Halle got some very cute clothes from Grandma and Grandpa Banks, and a fun music toy and a baby doll from Grandma and Grandpa Cornell.  Bridger gave her a popper which she hasn’t quite figured out how to use yet.  I made homemade scones and hot chocolate and Grandma Cornell made a chocolate Birthday cake.  Halle wanted to grab the candle, so we had to blow it out fast.  We took off her cute clothes so she could dive into her birthday cake, but she was a little timid at first.  Eventually she got the hang of it and it was all over her face, in her hair, and on her clothes.  It was great fun.  She also had a little princess crown that said Happy Birthday on it.  It was so cute! 
    Halle is getting so smart!  She can growl like a lion, whinny (or spit) like a pony, say pup and baby, and duck and also move her hand like a duck mouth.  She can also stand on her own, but still no walking.  She loves her little pink blanket and won’t go to sleep without it.  I am terrified that it is going to get lost.  She loves to wrestle with her dad on the bed and play tickle games with mom.  But her very favorite thing lately is Baby Einstein.  She would watch all day if we let her!  Her favorites are Baby Beethoven, Baby Neptune and Baby Newton.  She will go up to the TV, turn it on and plop down right in front o it.  Or she points and screams for us to turn it on.  It’s nice to be able to entertain her, but sometimes she throws a temper tantrum if she cant’ watch. 
    She has also learned to crawl down the stairs backward and thinks she can get off everything that way—our bed, the kitchen counter—she keeps us on our toes! 

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Friday, October 22, 2004

Banks family in Cancun

Oct 22, 2004—Wow!  It’s been a long time since I updated all Halle’s accomplishments.  We’ll start with the Banks family trip to Mexico.  We all flew to Mexico on Aug 16th of a week of fun in the sun. 

Familyzoomed---Copy_thumb2HHalle and Bridger were both doped up on Benadryl but it seemed to work better on Bridger than it did on Halle.  We had a whole huge bag filled with toys, treats, and books  to keep her entertained.  Rusty even brought along the laptop with a Baby Einstein DVD.  The kids did awesome on the flight and had Grandma and Grandpa to hold them when they got sick of Mom and Dad.  Kami, Brett, and Brynn met up with us in Dallas then the whole clan flew to Cancun.  We made it without and major mishaps until we arrived at the hotel.  They had mixed up our reservations and we had to go through a two day ordeal to get everything worked out, but it was worth it.  our room was beautiful.  We were 3 stories up and our suite overlooked the ocean.

But even more amazing than the view was that Halle started to crawl about the second we arrived in Mexico.  All the floors were tile and she hated scooting her little tummy across the cold floor.  It was so cute to see her try to master the arm and leg motion.  But she picked it up fast and a few hours later we had a crawler!


The kids had a great time being together and hanging out in the pool and on the beach.  Sadly, I think they preferred the pool.  Halle kept eating sand and then she would get so sad and try to get it out of her mouth, but the problem was there was still sand on her hands, so she ended up eating more.  Poor baby.  But it made for some cute pictures!  Bridger loved everything and was a handful, as usual.He had Halle get along so well.  Halle just adores him, and he will squat down to her level and “talk” to her.  She loves it. 


Grandpa Banks spent the trip bribing the kids with popsicles and he had three little friends gathered around him at all times. They were like little baby birds. Brynn was still a little shy around the family but she warmed up in the end. 




On Wed we decided to leave the resort and take in the sights.  We rented a 12-man van and off we went.  Sharon still can’t believe her little family is now big enough to fill a van.  Bridger and Brynn loved the freedom from the carseat, but Halle still had to sit in hers.  Our first stop was the Crococoon Zoo.  Halle fell asleep on the ride there so Grandma stayed in the car with her.  We got to hold baby crocodiles, pet a monkey, hold a snake, and stand about 3 feel from a full grown crocodile.  Whew!  AND, a mean deer tried to eat me.  Bridger didn’t love the crocodiles and didn’t want to let Grandpa near them.  Near the end Halle woke up so Grandma and I took her to see the monkeys.  The monkey would put its tail on the fence in hopes that you would give it food.  I put my finger on its tail to show Halle how it would grab on.  Well, the monkey squeezed a little tighter than I had anticipated and so I screamed.  This startled Halle and the monkey, who then decided to charge us.  It was on a leash and couldn’t get too near us, but it scared the poor baby to death.  She was hysterical for awhile and didn’t want anything else to do with the monkeys.



Next stop was Tulum.  It was so beautiful to see the ancient ruins right on the oceanfront.  The babies didn’t care about Tulum too much but the grown-ups loved it.

Our last stop of the day was Xel-ha.  Since we got there late in the afternoon we got a great discount!  Only $5/person.  Well all took turns tending the kids and snorkeling in the bay.  I saw my first sting ray.  It was amazing!  On the ride home all the babies crashed out—they were tired from their day adventure. 



The next day the boys decided to go golfing, so us girls and babies went to the mall.  It was pretty much a flee market, touristy place, but it was air conditioned.  Grandpa got all the kids t-shirts and maracas.  Halle’s shirt said, “Help, mom’s having a bad day, call 1-800-GRANDMA.  It was so cute. 

Our last day we got to go to an outdoor buffet complete with dancing.  The kids were fascinated by the dancers, but Halle tired of it quickly and we whisked her off to bed.  Our flight into Dallas got delayed after we had landed on the runway and we sat on the hot stuff plane for another 1/2 hour..  That did not go over well.  But we made it home safe and will always remember our Cancun adventure.


Halle 8 1/2 months

Halle is now 8 1/2 months.  Time is flying by.  This has been a big month for the little munchkin.  Her second tooth popped through, so now she has two cute chompers on the bottom.  She has also learned to scoot!  It is so cute.  Daddy was home with her one morning and all of the sudden she started scooting across the floor.  He was amazed.  She uses her little arms to pull herself across the floor.  She especially loves scooting on the kitchen floor because she can go places FAST.  She scoots over to the door stoppers and flicks them to her heart’s content.  When she is done playing she will scoot over to me and tap my foot until I pick her up.

Also this month Halle has learned to wave.  She uses her whole arm in an up and down motion.  The first time she waved was to Grandma and Grandpa Cornell when Halle and I were leaving after visiting for a few days. 

Halle had her first sleepover with Grandma and Grandpa Cornell last weekend.  Mommy and Daddy to go to stay at the Anniversary Inn in SLC and see Sarah McLaughlin in concert.  We had a great time and Halle had fun spending time with Grandma and Grandpa and and her aunts and uncles.  Grandpa taught Halle all about lights and now wherever we walk into a romm she immediately looks up and points at the light.  If you ask her, “Where’s the light?” she cranes her little head around until she can see it.  It’s so funny.  Then she will point at it with one finger and coo.

And…I graduated.

Best friends and neighbors graduating college the same day with our tiny babies.

Sunday, June 13, 2004

Halle 7 months

June 13, 2004—Halle has just turned 7 months old!  Time flies so quickly, and we love her so much!  She brings so much happiness into our home.  Halle is such a sweetheart.  She loves for Rusty and I to pay attention to her.  When she wants us to look at her she makes a little “huh” sound until we come over to her.  When we come over she reaks out in grins and starts kicking her little legs as hard as she can.  She is also learning to give little hugs and will bury her head into my neck.  It makes my heart melt. 
Halle’s biggest milestone this month is becoming proficient at rolling.  She rolls everywhere!  Her favorite is to roll from the living room to the fridge in the kitchen.  She sits and scrapes at the fridge and the linoleum. One time there was a crumb in between the wall and the fridge in the crack and she was straining her arm as far as she could and scratching at the floor exerting all the strength she could muster to try and reach the crumb.  It was so cute.  She loves to play with her toys and loves anything that crinkles.  She has a bunny with crinkle ears and a crinkle book.  She can also sit all by herself. 
Halle loves to eat fruit.  She does not like vegetables.  When we try and feed the, to her she makes the most awful face and then just lets them drool out of her mouth. But she eat any kind of fruit.  Her favorite right now is pears and pineapples.  She also loves to chew on apples slices.  She has started to eat graham sticks and she gets them EVERYWEHRE—All over her face, clothes, and hands.  Sometimes she even manages to smear them on her toes. 
Also, Halle’s first tooth has finally just popped through.  It’s the bottom middle one.  It is still just tiny, but we know it’s there.  She was pretty sad where it was coming in so she got special treats like popsicles and lots of extra love.
Little Lindi Brown was born on May 3, 2004. Halle loves her new little friend.  She is so fascinated and always wants to grab her face.  It will be fun when Lindi is a little older and they can play together. 
Halle is also totally infatuated with Bridger.  She loves him so much.  It is the sweetest thing in the world.  She does the “huh” for Bridger until he looks at her.  Up until a few weeks ago Bridger would just ignore her but now he comes up and give her hugs.  It makes Halle so happy!  She just giggles and grins and flaps her arms.  It is so fun to see the cousins interacting with each other.  Brett and Kami and Brynn came from Arizona at the first of June and we went down and spent Rusty and Lindsey’s birthday with them.  We took all the cousins swimming at the AF Rec Center.  We had a blast. 
Halle is such a happy girl.  She loves just about anything.  She loves to go on walks with her Dad and swim with Mom. 
I just got an internships with the Bear River Health Department so Halle goes to a baby sitter twice a week for a few hours.  She loves the interaction with Haley, who is 1 1/2 years old. 
Every Wednesday we have WOTL  (Wed out to lunch) with dad. Last week we went to SDL where Dad works and had a picnic.  We were by a little pond and Halle was fascinated with the fountain in the middle.  She couldn’t take her eyes off it.  She also just got a little adorable tennis outfit.  Dad is so proud.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Halle 3 1/2 months-5 1/2 month

Feb 2004—Hallemander is now 3 1/2 months old. She is about 15 libs and 24 inches long.  She is at such a darling age!  Her little grins are the best thing in the world.  She has a tummy-time gym that can entertain her for hours.  It plays little songs and flashes lights.  Rusty and I joke that she thinks the little toys hanging from the gym are her brothers and sisters.  She coos and screams and flails her little arms and legs.  We just watch her and laugh.  I swear we could sit there for hours. 
She wakes up in the morning quite predictable at 8:30.  Sometimes she surprises us with a 7:30 yelp, but she likes her sleep.  Rusty goes and gets her and changes her diaper.  After her morning nursing we sit in the bed an play.  She is so happy and talks and smiles and her newest trick is blowing bubbles with her mouth, usually dropping a big drool bomb on whoever happens to be holding her.  She and Rusty have morning tummy-time where she lays on his chest and tries to keep her heard up.  She gets frustrated pretty easily, much preferring to be on her back.
Our Babykins is just learning to grab at things.  We have some rings that hang from her car seat that she will grab at.  It is so funny to watch her try and work her fingers.  Most of the time she just scratches at things as her fingers open and close frantically trying to get the object.  But, when she does get the rings, she tries to shove them all in her mouth at once.  Sometimes she doesn’t realize she has them in her hands and she will smack herself in the head.  Her Daddy holds the rings above her head and tries to go “fishing for a Hallemander.” He lowers the ring toward her mouth and she starts chomping at it.  It is hysterical! He also loves to lay her on our bed and the jump up and down so she bounces around.  She thinks that is pretty funny.
One thing Halle and I do together is go swimming at Sports Academy. I started taking her when she was 2 months old. We practice kicking, back floating, and going under the water.  She usually does really well and enjoys her time in the water.  Sometimes when we go under she gets a lung full of water and lets me know in no uncertain terms that she does not appreciate that.  I teach the Parent-Tot class and hopefully by summer she will be doing well enough to be my demonstrator. 
Halle is usually an absolute delight, but she HATES crowds.  On Valentines Day our stake hosted a dinner and a dance.  As soon as we got in a large ground of people she started bawling her head off.  We finally go her calmed down and then the lights went out and the music started.  She totally lost all control.  I though she was going to be hoarse from screaming so loud.  It took over an hour to calm her down once we got home. Then we decided to try our luck again.  Ashley and Dustin were having their wedding dinner in SLC.  Rusty couldn’t go, but I decided Halle and I would have an adventure.  Adventure it was, but not the fun kind I had hoped.  Again, as soon as we got in a big crowd she went nuts.  This time she got a rash on her chest from crying so hard.  Luckily Grandpa Banks came to the rescue.  He took her out while I enjoyed my dinner.  But, we could still hear her screams echoing thought the Joseph Smith Memorial Building. 
April 2004—Halle is now 5 1/2 months old.  Her nickname of late is “baby bear” But, bear can be attached to a number of adjectives—sad bear, coo bear, stinky bear, tired bear, scream bear, etc.  She is a screamer!  Happy, sad, whatever—she can hit notes that opera sopranos only dream of.  As a result, Mommy take a lot of Tylenol. (ha ha) It’s fun to see her little personality developing.  She is so vocal—she loves to coo and scream.  She has perfected her grabbing skills and will reach for anything in sight.  She particularly likes markers.  I have no idea why.  Maybe she’s drawn to the colors.  But, if she is crying and you put a marker in front of her she will immediately be quiet and start chewing in the marker.  She also loves the rings that hand from her car seat.  They are just the right size to stuff in her mouth.
Another big milestone for Halle is the introduction of solid food.  She loves to taste anything, so we decided to start her on rice cereal about two weeks ago.  She wasn’t a big fan of the cereal by itself, but mixed with bananas she LOVES it!  She also loves applesauce and carrots.  She is a messy little eater, but it’s so cute to watch her discover new textures and testes.  She only eats about 3 tbs/day and half of that ends up on her face and clothes. 
She is still a little swimmer.  Now, when I put her under the water she scrunches he eyes shut tight.  It is adorable to watch.  She comes with me to Parent-Tot and loves the interaction with the other kids.  It’s pretty funny to watch when she splashes herself and gets so confused.  The other day at swimming she swallowed lot of water in the pool.  As I was getting her ready after swimming she was eating her bottle.  After she had eaten about 6 oz, she let out a big burp and all the pool water and all the formula came gushing out.  It was pretty gross.  But the funniest part was that she did not mind al all.  She just sat there calm as could be while I mopped her up. 
Hale loves her bumper pads.  When she sleeps she squishes her face up against them.  I don’t know how she breathes, but somehow she manages.  She also love to cuddle her blanket.  As soon as we put her down she immediately grabs the blanket, shoves it in her moth and squishes her face against the bumper pads and goes to sleep.  It’s so cute.  She loves her bumpers so much that when we go down to visit the Grandparents we have to take them with us or she can’t sleep. 

Friday, January 2, 2004

Halle’s first months

Halle’s first few days at home were an adjustment, to say the least.  Rist and I were totally sleep deprived but it was all worth it when we got to snuggle out little girl in our arms.  She abslutely loved to be held. we couldn’t put her down without her screaming for more loves.  There were days I didn’t leave the rocking chari for hours.  Rusty would come home at 3 pm and I’d stull be in my pj’s with unbrushed teeth.  Gross.  Halle’s jaundice levels were high when we brought her home and she had to be on the bilibed to get her bilirubin levels down. It was so sad to lay her on that bed all day and not be abole to play with her and hold her.  She had to get her little heel pricked everyday until the jaundice was gone.  It about killed Rusty.  I had to be the strong one and comfort Rusty.  He was so concerned for his little princess and he would hold her and calm her down.  It was so sweet.
A few weeks later she became extremely fussy.  Every time we laid her down she would just cry and cry.  I though her gas was bothering her, and finally, after a few days of misery, I took her to the pediatrician.  Poor little Halle had a bad ear infection!  I felt like the worst mother in the world.  When I told Rusty he just wanted to cry for her.  We had let our tiny newborn go for days with an ear infection.  we put her on antibiotics right away, and the next day she seemed to be feeling a lot better.  So, between jaundice and an ear infection,her first weeks were pretty rough!
Halle hated to sleep in her cradle.  She would lonely sleep in her vibrator chair that Grandma Banks gave her.  And she was so particular in the way she liked to be held.  Rusty would hold her to the left side with one leg up—it never failed to calm her.  She like to lay her head on his nice, muscled chest.  Her sleep patterns were quite spoadic.  She loved to wake up at about 3am and then not go back to sleep for hours.
Halle arrived right in time for the holidays.  She got to meet the whole extended family at Thanksgiving and Christmas.  She participated in the Cornell family ritual of sleeping in the  basement family room on Christmas Eve. she even got a new pair of pajamas.  She wasn’t too cooperative when it came time to sleep.  Her crying was keeping everyone awake so Halle and I went and slept in the bedroom.  Christmas morning came and Santa had brought her some socks that actually fit her tiny feet, a new bottle, and a rattle.  The we headed up to the Banks’ house where the three grandkids were surprised with darling rocking horses.  Halle’s is pink with a purple mane and tail.  So darling.  Bridger and Brynn were having a great time playing in the boxes and Halle was jealous she couldn’t join in.
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Along came January and with it Halle’s sleeping habits got worse.  She didn’t sleep for more than an hour at a time.  After a few weeks of this, Rusty decided it was time for her to start sleeping though the night.  We had a long weekend where he didn’t have to e at school.  She he developed a schedule of naps and feeding and within two days she was sleeping at least 8 hours in the night, and often more.  He is amazing!  I don’t know how he did it, be she totally responds to him.  It was wonderful to be able to sleep again and it made us more attentive to her in the daytime.
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