I'm way, way behind. There are many stories to tell, I'm afraid, so this is going to be a long one.
The reason why Lula was full of falls the day I last posted was because she was about to get horribly ill! She got a bad fever and actually vomited (for the first time ever) the very next day, and she stayed sick with a fever and diarrhea for over a week. The illness made her incredibly clingy and wouldn't eat (except breast milk) or let me put her down. It was rough for all of us.
Oh, and after the illness? We found that she had sprouted FOUR MOLARS at the same time. So either that actually caused the illness or just made it much worse. By the way, Lula hates getting her teeth brushed, and will purse her lips and shake her head to get away from the toothbrush, pushing the brush away and throwing it on the ground if she grabs it. I'm currently soliciting advice for how I might get her to accept the Responsibilities of Teeth Ownership...
The weekend after the illness we went to NJ for a visit and a bit of a break. It helped me and Scott because my parents took Lula as soon as she woke up every morning, leaving us to sleep in for a couple of hours. Unfortunately this visit marked the beginning of her new wake-up time: dawn. As in, when the sky is just starting to get a little bit lighter. As in, around 5am. One morning last week it was actually 4:50am. I looked forward to Daylight Savings Time this year, because it meant that now she gets up at 6am instead of 5am, and 6am now feels like a reasonable wake-up time for me. (I am a night person.)
Anyway, the best part of the NJ visit was a trip to the Rutgers agricultural college farm during what happened to be Dairy Day. There Lula met some goats, pigs and piglets, horses, and most importantly, cows. There was a huge shed of dairy cows there, and you could pet them and feed them hay. Did you know that cows like to lick things, particularly salty things? Did you know that, in addition to being small and easy to reach, babies are pretty salty? What transpired was a pretty remarkable cow-and-baby lovefest. Cows have enormous, long, sticky tongues. And Lula found the cows hilarious and fun, not terrifying, even though they were in fact a little scary, as their heads are about as big as Lula's entire person. I kept whisking her away from the cows once the cows got a little taste, because if I hadn't, who knows what would've happened? The cows' tongues were reaching out as if her face was a clump of grass that they could easily wrap around and pull out to eat. As it happened she just got gently tapped with stinky cow saliva a bunch of times while she giggled and put her hands up to her face. Of course we took tons of photos; take a look.
Also in our photos are a bunch we took during our visit to see The Gates in Central Park. We went on February 20th, arguably the most crowded day of the entire installation. Like most people who visited The Gates, we came, we saw, they were kind of neat, we took pictures, we got tired, we went home.
The walking is going really well. Lula's favorite thing now is to walk through the apartment, finding items in drawers, on bookshelves, or in purses, and then carrying these items to other parts of the apartment. She likes carrying blankets, books, and even (and unfortunately) the cats' water dish. And now that she's a toddler she's started to figure out that there are things she's not allowed to do, like exploring the litterbox, playing with lightbulbs, or chewing on tubes of Chapstick. No tantrums yet, thank God, but she's been keeping her parents on their toes.
The last thing I'll mention is that the list of things she'll eat is getting shorter and shorter. Right now it includes yogurt, cottage cheese, crackers, bread, waffles, American cheese, certain jars of baby food and only at certain times, Annie's Shells and Cheese, and applesauce. Items closely related to items on the list (ie. pancakes, cookies) are also sometimes acceptable. She likes what she likes.
I hope I don't give the impression that taking care of Lula is a total drag. She is as much a delight as ever, if not more so. She's really fun, quite frankly. She now loves to be "chased" and will laugh so hard once you've almost "caught" her that she will fall down so that you must catch her. She also finds the action of knocking while saying "knock-knock-knock" totally hilarious, and will repeat to you "na-na-na!" and make a little knocking gesture with her fist. She gives the best hugs, tucking her arms to her sides and humping her butt to snuggle up closer to you. She couldn't be cuter or more wonderful.