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Homeward bound, for now.

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Friday, 19 September 2014: One Year, One Hundred and Seventy One Days Old

Ayla and I headed home today to see Daddy, The Dog, Cat Cat and the “Ju-jus” (chook-chooks!)

Ayla was so excited to be home, running over to Daddy as soon as she saw him at the airport and gluing herself to his side. Then, when we pulled in the driveway at home and Ayla saw The Dog she gave him the biggest smile and a pat, and later when she saw our cat lounging under the outdoor setting she squealed Cat Cat, pointed and ran on the spot in excitement.

The cutest was seeing Ayla go inside and rediscover all her toys! Ayla ran straight to her little piano, pulled out the stool and bashed on the keys for a few minutes, then toddled over to her toybox and touched everything in her reach. Best of all though was when Ayla layed eyes on her little couch – her most very favourite thing of all! Ayla screeched with delight and plonked herself down, grinning from ear to ear as she looked from me to Hubby and back again.

Ayla excitement about being home meant that an afternoon nap was completely out of the question, so instead she joined Hubby and I out in the yard as we caught up on some gardening. After three weeks of beautiful, crisp spring weather it didn’t take long for home’s 36 degree heat and build-up humidity to have an affect on Ayla, flushing her cheeks pinky-red and putting tiny beads of baby sweat on her top lip.

When bedtime finally rolled around Ayla was pooped but happy, and I was looking forward to a night in my own bed! It felt like we’d accomplished the first leg of an endurance marathon and I relished the chance for some routine and normalcy, even if it’s just for a couple of weeks before returning interstate for the next lot of tests. Thankfully though, Ayla has taken to her prescription formula easily and seems to love it, so we can at least rest assured we’re actually doing something that might help her in the meantime.

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Reunited

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Wednesday, 10 September 2014; One Year, One Hundred and Sixty Two Days Old.

Ayla was reunited with her Daddy tonight, when he flew down to join us in time for Ayla’s procedure.

Hubby asked that I didn’t say anything to Ayla about picking Daddy up as we headed off to the airport, but I did accidentily mention it to her yesterday and since then every knock at the door or sound upstairs has had Ayla pointing and saying “Daddy?”

We got to the airport early and waited at the gate. Ayla was restless by the time people started disembarking and she was wandering around excitedly, dodging legs and carry on baggage as they hurriedly headed for the baggage collection area.

I saw Hubby well before Ayla did, and he squatted down next to her. Ayla stopped in her tracks and stared at him; studing his face as if to work out whether he was real or not.

Then it clicked. Ayla ran the last two steps towards her Daddy and threw her arms around his neck, refusing to let go. Ayla kept looking back at me, smiling, then patting her Daddy’s face as if to say
“Nawww Mum! Look! Daddy’s actually here!” – so cute.

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Playing favourites

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Thursday, 24 July 2014: One Year, One Hundred and Fifteen Days Old.

We adults might not play favourites to our kids but Ayla is SUCH a Daddy’s girl!

When Daddy drives down around the corner each evening Ayla screeches and starts running along the fence line, stopping when she reaches the end of the concrete to wave and dance on the spot while he comes in the driveway.

Daddy also has the most luck with feeding Ayla. I might try for ages to get a spoonful or two in, then Daddy takes over and the whole serve is missing in what feels like moments.

Ayla’s started to want her Daddy more often when she’s hurt, tired or hungry too lately. I always thought that a Mummy cuddle fixed everything but for Ayla at the moment it’s a Daddy cuddle through and through.

Then tonight when Daddy left the house and Ayla stayed behind with our babysitter her little lip quivered, then she cried and called out to him at the front door as he drove off.

The babysitter said she distracted Ayla and the tears were gone after a minute or two, but all night whenever Ayla walked past her Daddy’s work bag she pointed at it and said “Dadda?”

Admittedly Ayla did walk up to a photo of me on the TV cabinet and say “Mumma” but that was probably just cos she didn’t want to play favourites 😉

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Doctor Dad

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Monday, 3 June 3014: One Year and Eight Weeks Old.

Hubby got to play Doctor Dad all day today.

It was strange because I felt a little nervous leaving him at home with a sick Baby Ayla, even though I knew they’d both be ok.

I think it was because Hubby is so GOOD at being a Dad.

To me, it looks like parenthood is completely natural for him; he’s calm, confident, well-balanced and fun.

Of course there’s a little element of causality in there, but show me a grown up man anywhere who wouldn’t be considered “casual” or “relaxed”.

I tried my best not to fuss as I left my instructions and hurtled out the door, late because I’d spent too much time preparing the day to make it as easy as possible for my little family.

When I came home, Ayla was still sick and Hubby was still, almost a little disappointedly for me, unfrazzled.

It was a a great reminder to me that Hubby and I are undoubtedly a team, and today he stepped up to plate and delivered a home run.

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No steps

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Monday, 19 May 2014: One Year and Seven Weeks Old.

I found out today that Ayla has been walking around heaps at day care!

Although I’d know Ayla had taken a few steps last week, when I picked her up today the day care mums greeted me with excited claims that Ayla was now properly walking.

Of course I couldn’t wait to get home and see Ayla out her new skills in action but alas, at home Ayla seems perfectly content on all fours.

Throughout the afternoon and evening Ayla keep standing and clapping, but still no steps.

Then when we went out for a swim before dinner Ayla walked the whole length of the patio holding on to her Daddy’s hand with the biggest smile on her face.

My heart melted and a took a moment to record the memory in my brain forever; a tiny little blonde haired, chubby legged Baby Ayla, holding on tight to get Daddy’s weathered hand, both of them oozing pride and happiness like I’ve never seen before.

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First steps!

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Saturday, 17 May 2014: One Year and Forty Seven Days Old.

Ayla took her first, proper, unassisted steps today!!

Apparently Ayla did take a few steps a day care this week, but Hubby and I decided that it didn’t count unless we saw it for ourselves.

And today, we did!

It’s Saturday so Hubby was working and Ayla and I were busy pottering around the house catching up on a few chores.

Around lunch time Ayla and I decided to take a break, and I put a friends single mattress on the floor so I could stretch out my back and play with Ayla at the same time.

It didn’t take long for Ayla to realise the cushioning properties of the mattress and with minutes she was standing on it and clapping her hands.

I moved down to one end of the mattress and Ayla worked out why straight away; coming at me down the blue foamy runway with four tentative, wobbly, chubby-baby-leg steps!

I squealed with excitement and gave Ayla the biggest hug, which set her off on a pattern of stand-step-step-step-step-fall for the next half an hour.

All I could think of though was how much I wished Hubby was there to share in the moment, and I felt so sad for him missing out.

Thankfully Ayla was so happy to show off her skills that she let me take a quick video (will post it in a sec) so that Daddy could see our little TODDLER in action.

Ayla still isn’t walking around properly yet mind you, but it must only be days away! For now though Ayla seems content to limit her walking to padded surfaces which gives Hubby and I plenty of time to get ready for a whole new chapter.