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Holiday mode over

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Tuesday, 22 April 2014; One Year and Three Weeks Old.

Holiday mode was over for me today as I returned to work after the Easter break, and it was supposed to be over for Ayla too.

But, Hubby is on his week off and Ayla’s grandma is visiting for a few days so there was bucklies chance of that happening!

Even though I explained to them that it would be good for Ayla to get back into her day care routine as soon as possible, I could tell they had other ideas.

And I was right!

Can’t say I blame them though, time with Ayla feels like the most precious commodity in existence and I know I wouldn’t take her if I didn’t have to.

So while I sat at work writing PowerPoint presentations and fending off meeting requests, my little family swam in the pool at home.

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Extraordinary

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Monday, 21 April 2014: One Year, Two Weeks and Six Days Old.

Last Easter Monday Hubby and I were in a hospital room staring at a tiny hours-old Ayla Rose.

We didn’t think life could be any more perfect and precious than what it was that day, and we could hardly wait to show our baby girl the world.

Today, a little more than a year on, and Hubby and I had yet another wonderful Easter Monday making precious memories with our baby girl.

It’s amazing how life seems so much more meaningful and special now that Ayla is part of it.

A couple of years ago, a morning we spent at the beach like we did today would still have been fun, but it wouldn’t have felt new and exciting.

I guess it’s because having Ayla helps me see things through her eyes, and sometimes it feels like the first time.

Normally I never would have noticed the colour of the sand, the sharpness of the rocks or the temperature of the water like I noticed today.

And while I would have enjoyed the warmth of the sun on my back back then, I doubt I would have felt it nourishing the soul like how it felt today.

I have Ayla to thank fort newfound wisdom, and every day she grows and learns more about the world I do too.

Ayla makes the simplest things special and the oldest things new, the most boring things interesting and the average extraordinary.

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Tradition

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Sunday, 20 April 2014: One Year, Two Weeks and Five Days Old.

In the weeks leading up to today, Easter Sunday, Hubby and I have spent many a moment contemplating what traditions we’d like to set for our little family and for Ayla.

Of course the Easter bunny brought chocolate eggs on Sunday morning, but what else does Easter mean to us? And what do we want it to mean for Ayla?

As neither Hubby nor I come from religious families going to church wasn’t high on our suggestion list, but we both still think its important for Ayla to know what Easter is all about.

And of course, a four day weekend presents countless opportunities for traditions to be made and carried out, hence all the camping magazines in the mail lately.

But despite all the thinking and discussion by the time today rolled around Hubby and I still hadn’t decided on what “the Easter weekend” was going to mean for our family.

Nevertheless, as our unplanned Easter Sunday took shape I began to realise that we don’t need “tradition” to make Easter meaningful.

Instead Easter gives us the chance to be together as a family, for four whole days, doing whatever makes us happy and fulfils us.

Today, that meant having an early swim at the Waterfront, a coffee and cake for lunch, an afternoon nap and evening drinks at a neighbours house.

But next year it might mean spending four days in the middle of nowhere in a tent, or tucked up on the couch enjoying a movie marathon, or singing made-up songs in the boat as we bob in the ocean waiting for a bite.

So long as we are together, healthy, happy and enjoying quality time together as a family… That’s what will be Easter for us.

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What we needed

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Saturday, 19 April 2014: One Year, Two Weeks and Four Days Old.

What a beautiful, relaxed, lazy Saturday my little family had today; it was exactly what we needed.

It was one of those days where nothing much happened but it was the kind of day where togetherness meant everything.

After having been so sick and stressed lately, and after all the upheaval of adjusting to new routines and getting used to a new-look life balance it was refreshing to just do regular, normal things.

After pottering around the house and garden enjoying what felt like a cool dry season morning, Hubby and I slowly worked through our chores with plenty of time to spare.

It was soon time to pick up Ayla’s grandma from the airport and Ayla seemed stoked to see her, or maybe it was the belated birthday presents peeking out of her bag?!

From the airport we had to make a quick stop at Bunnings and stumbled across a petting zoo where Ayla and her grandma got to hold baby bunnies and chickens, and saw a baby goat who was only four days old.

The afternoon was spent chatting, and napping, and pottering around some more, before receiving a spur of the moment invite to join some friends for dinner, which of course we happily accepted.

All day Ayla was bright and happy, she ate well and napped easily. Hubby and I we’re calm and relaxed and by the time we fell in to bed we felt like we’d had the best day ever.

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Gnasher

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Friday, 18April 2014: One Year, Two Weeks and Three Days Old

Ayla has started grinding her teeth together!

It’s horrific; like scraping fingernails along a black board, which ironically is a sound Ayla will probably never hear or understand.

And even though Ayla looks damn cute when she juts out her bottom jaw and gnashes her four front (and only) teeth together, I just can’t stand it.

I think the grinding is a cruel product of learning to brush her teeth because at this stage (thankfully!) Ayla only seems to grind when she sees her toothbrush or we talk about brushing them.

I have been trying not to make a fuss hoping desperately she’ll forget how to do it soon, but for now its goosebumps all round.

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Easter basket

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Thursday, 17 April 2014: One Year, Two Weeks and Two Days Old.

Ayla came home from day care today with her first ever hand-made Easter basket!!

It looks like a paper template the kids painted themselves and then the day care mums must have stapled them together to make the baskets.

The front is shaped like a bunny’s face and the back even had a cotton ball tail (except it didn’t take long for Ayla to rip hers off).

Seeing Ayla with her first official “school” art was exactly what I needed this afternoon, after spending the whole day in bed.

Thankfully Hubby started R&R today which meant he was around to take Ayla to day care this morning and pick her up this afternoon.

While I was a little upset at first that I wasn’t there to pick Ayla up on such a momentous day, seeing her get out of the car at home with her Easter basket was so cute!

Ayla seemed to know her little Easter basket was special because she clung on to it for ages after she got home.

Hubby and I eventually gave in and let Ayla have one of the Easter eggs that had come in the basket (the only one left after Hubby had raided it!)

It was Ayla’s first ever Easter egg and she loved it, of course!

PS – Ayla’s fifth tooth cut through today. It’s her top left incisor (fang). Maybe that’s why her sleeping’s been unsettled lately.

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Argh!!

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Wednesday, 16 April 2014: One Year, Two Weeks and One Day Old.

Argh!! I’m so tired, so sick, stressed and my boobs are turning into empty sacks while I watch.

I’m over of having sickness in this household. Over of sleepless nights. I feel absolutely terrible and I can feel my body shutting down!!

So much for the “solution” to a full nights sleep I thought I’d discovered yesterday…

After not going to bed until 9pm Ayla was up at midnight, then again 2.45am, 4.00am, 5.00am and 6.00am.

At the midnight feed I gave Ayla another bottle, then at 2.45am I gave her breast milk.

Then after that there’s was nothing more I could do except lie listening to Ayla cry through the monitor, waiting for her go back to sleep herself.

Hubby was right there with me of course and he was willing to get up and give resettling his best shot, but Ayla’s tears are for mummy, nothing else.

I can understand where Ayla’s coming from, everything she’s experienced in life so far has been turned on its head and if I were her I’d be wanting cuddles too.

But where I’d usually enjoy our quite closeness in the wee hours, last night my body just wouldn’t let me.

Finally my fever has broken but I’m sicker today than yesterday! The antibiotics are making me ill and I feel weak from having had no appetite for days.

To add insult to injury I feel terrible for Baby Ayla who needs me to be there for her as she adjusts to her new routine but I can’t even provide her with the milk she’s relied on her whole life.

It sucks. I really want to be writing about happy things, new memories and fun adventures but it’s seems to be a downward slope at the moment! I’m sure things will turn around soon, and hopefully I’ll feel better after some sleep!