13 Months and a bit

Dear Lani,

Once again a bit late, but with good reason. I t was grant writing time and I am a little desperate to keep this job so was busy working very hard.. Now everything has been submitted and we can have a little breather.  Things have been pretty awesome you are WALKING and loving it.. It keeps your hands free for carrying things around. 

School is still one of your favourite places to be and I hope it stays that way for a long time.  You are now officially a water chicken, after your near drowning session in France you can not get enough of water.  We have been to the pool, the beach and on the weekend you decided that sitting in a bucket of water (meant for dogs) was the way to go.  

We have made some new friends in the neighbourhood since some of our old friends have moved away.  You are the new owner of a pink bike that we found on the street and even if it is way to big for you, you love riding it. 

There is a lot of talking happening, although your dad and I have yet to figure out what it is that you say or even what language your are speaking. So far the one thing that you say consistently is bye bye and you even use it in the right context (when you close the door, or put something away). 

It is has always been fun hanging out with you, but these days are even more awesome, and while you can be demanding and a princess you are also very loving, always on the go and funny.  (the funny bit is obviously something you inherited from me). 

All my love always,






1 year

It does not feel as great as I thought it would be, probably because we had a crappy night after so many good ones. Every time I get fooled into thinking that we cracked it and Lani will sleep through the night from now on and then SMACK-DOWN from 1.30 AM till 3 AM we are taking turns in trying to settle her.

I do think that our hardest year is yet to come, with Y having to finish his PhD and dealing with family issues.  We have no idea where we will be in 8 months time, my contract is ending and Y will have to look for a post-doc position.

It is only today that I have really started to become worried, moving house/country and job is a lot less easy with a toddler around.  Although she is probably the easiest, closely followed by Y and then after a very long pause there is me.

Going back to Europe for our trip made me realise how much I dont like it. It also made me realise how much Y does and how happy he was to be back.  He has never ever said anything indicating he wants to go back or that he does not like being in Australia but I dont think I have seen him being so relaxed and so himself as he was when he was with the people from the lab.   It has definitely given me something to think about and depending on the job situation, it is probably time for me to just suck it up and embrace Europe if we have to.  I know that the grandparents will be ecstatic.

For now though I need to try and get some data together and finish the work that I started so I can get some new publications.. the gap on my CV is getting bigger and bigger..  I always have every intention to start with my review, but never get much further than that.  Hopefully the doom of being jobless and without a good CV to help me find a new job will give me the motivation I need.






11 almost 12 months

Hi Ms Lani,

Yep about a month late.. oops but we were overseas for most of your 11 month.. Our very first overseas adventure and not one I would like to repeat. It was not bad but also not so good.

You were great on the plane, you made new friends, barely cried and managed to sleep not in the bassinet, it was to small but on my lap.

We spent our first week in Joue le Tours with your French Grandparents and it was pretty tough. You were clearly jet-lagged, even resulting in a few big vomits.  And sleeping at night was even harder.  You did become best friends with your auntie’s cat Inca.   The whole family spoilt you like crazy with toys and clothes.  You finally saw your first Wallaby, in the botanical gardens in Tours, crazy huh??

We left to see your Oma en Opa in Holland on Boxing Day, by then you were pretty much recovered from your jet lag but you still ended up spending every night in our bed.  Oma had organised a little party so people could meet you.  While you were not too happy with all the people trying to touch you. You really loved seeing all the other kids and playing with them.  We took you to Amsterdam and to the delta works and to the zoo.  Most days though were spent on the farm, which because of the shitty weather was pretty boring, but you did enjoy looking at the Fish and the cats and the chickens.

Our last week we were back in Tours, you were much better. Although still never really yourself.  I was dying to come back home and so so tired. Mainly because you still did not sleep through the night and were spending most nights attached to me.  Dad was having a good time which which was lovely to see.   We went to the lab where you got to meet lots of people and got to spend time with Salaar a very entertaining and funny 3 yr old! And then it was time to go, just before the snow arrived.

The trip home was very tiring, mainly because we had a very long stop-over in Singapore and we went from flying business class to having to go back to cattle class. Again  though you were very well behaved although on the second leg there was a bit of screaming.

Once home, we quickly managed to settle into our usual routine. You sleep in your own bed and we have stopped all the night feeds!

You have 5 teeth, are still not walking but are very good cruising and walking while holding our hands. You have an extreme interest in animals whether they are real or in books.  You point to the things that you want, and make it very clear when you are not happy.  And last weekend we saw your love for rain since despite the torrential rain all you wanted was to be outside and dive into the massive puddles, and so we did!

My darling in these past 2 months you have changed from being a baby into a little girl and it is the most wonderful transformation.  I can not express how much I enjoy seeing you develop into your own (very bossy) person.

All my love always,



10 Months

Dear Lani,

You turned 10 Months last week. Both your dad and I only remembered because we got a message from “my baby” an app we both downloaded.  I know, we suck, but to be honest, we have been through a very very rough month with your night time sleeping. You went from sleeping the whole night, to waking every few hours.  The only times that you were sleeping well was when you were sick and that happened twice.  Not just a cold,  this time it was high fever and feeling really unwell.   Luckily we seem to have gotten over whatever it was that was keeping you up. It might have been the 3, yes THREE, teeth that you decided to grow.  They are barely there, but we can definitely feel and see something.  

You have started giving kisses, not often and definitely only on your terms, but every now and then you will grab our faces and plant a big wet kiss on our mouths.  It is the best!!  Hugs are also there, more than kisses, but never enough for your dad and I. 

You know how to climb stairs, to walk behind your walker and are very close to using a fork correctly.  

Your dad and you have so much fun together, you two play a chasing game that has you cracking up the whole time.  You actually initiate the game.    Reading books is another favourite of yours and I make sure we read to you everyday.  And then there are the balls, we have about 54385 and you enjoy throwing them around.  Dad likes to impress you with his juggling skills. 

Recently you are a bit more clingy especially with me, this part of your normal development so we are not too bothered by it although it can get a bit much at times.   And you are “talking” we have BAH and MUM, and then a lot of other sounds.  MUM has nothing to do with me, you seem to say it when you are getting a bit upset (so maybe it has!). 

 Despite this being one of the hardest months for me I would not trade it in the world!  

All my love always,





9 Months

Dear Lani,

Yesterday you turned 9 months old.  You have now been out in this world for as long as I carried you… Crazy to think how fast things have gone!  

To celebrate your 9 months you decided to stay up half the night and scream and yet in the morning you were the perfectly happy and cheery baby you always are.   It’s OK, your dad and I both know that you do not do this on purpose and while we keep blaming teeth, you are still a toothless baby and will probably stay that way for some time. 

Your favourite thing to do at the moment is play with your ball and the radio.. your crawling is excellent but more and more you are trying to walk while holding on to the furniture.   While you do not talk constantly unlike me, you are making more and more sounds.  You have a fake cough that you do to get some attention, a laugh that seems pretty fake too and there is the occasional scream..  My favourite  thing is to hear you do your real laugh, it is the best sound ever. Luckily your dad is very capable of making you laugh all the time. 

As all the books say, you have become a bit more clingy towards me and weary of people you do not know. You actually cried for the first time at day care when I left you. Now we just get one of the cares to hold you and that seems fine.  When you are with your dad you are great! 

Reading books is another favourite past time.  You have 2 favourites, a dinosaur book and a zoo book.  So while you read those, I read the Hairy Mclary ones to you.  I do think that you like them too, they are just less interactive.   

It is amazing to see you grow up into this happy healthy soon to be toddler.  Everyday your dad and I realise how lucky we are to have you in our lives and we love seeing you discover the world. 

All my love,





8 months

Dear Lani,

8 Months already!!   Pretty proud of your dad and myself for making it this far without doing too much damage.  Just a few days before your 8th month you decided to crawl, not very far and your technique is interesting to say the least, but you are crawling. And on the same day you also showed me that you can walk.  You held on to the bed and did two steps to get to Hippolite (I have probably misspelt this) but it is your toy horse.  Your dad comes up with the most of the names of all your toys.

Still waiting on your teeth but it definitely does not stop you from biting and eating everything. Flavour of the month is seeds that you find in the garden, they are too hard to chew so you just stuff them in your cheek for your dad and I to pull out when we realise what you are eating.

And we finally have a decision from your dad, he has decided to stay which has made me happy beyond belief. I know that you have no idea what is/was happening but in the past 1.5 yr things have been pretty unstable in our lives. Once we found out we were having you we had to decide where we were going to live and then after you were born the question still always was.. what now. You will find that your dad and I are both pretty good at putting our heads in the sand and that your dad really takes his time in making decisions, considering that these are pretty massive decisions to make it is totally understandable.  Anyway while you have been pretty oblivious to what was going on I do think that us being together as a family is the best thing for you!  For now I am still at home for 2 days and dad for 1, but by the end of this year we hope that you can go to day care 3 days a week and your dad and I will both be home for 1 day each.   But that is still a while a way.  For now I am so excited that you are becoming mobile since there is whole new world ready for you to explore!

All my love always,



Month 7

Dear Lani,

You turned 7 months, a little more than a week ago.  Things have been relatively quiet on the developmental front.  The main thing is that you have HAIR, not as much as your friend Luke but definitely getting more and more.

We are still waiting for you to crawl, but I have a feeling you might just skip that step completely and start walking since your new favourite thing to do is STANDING.  You now pull yourself up in the bed and stand at the side. This morning you pulled yourself up on the pram and managed to stay there by your self for quite some time.

Sleeping is amazing, there are of course still days that are a bit all over the place, but most of the time you are rocking it! And we have managed to drop night time feeds to zero. Every now and then you do want/need one but in general you dont wake up, unless you are upside down in the bed!

You and your dad have lots of fun together and everything seems to go so naturally with you two that I always get a bit freaked out when it is just you and I. Yep you have one crazy mumma.. but you have made life pretty easy for me too!

Your favourite thing to do is to play peek-a-boo it really cracks you up.  Banging things on the floor/table or against each other is another favourite.  You still love day care and will be going for two days a week very soon!

There is some more talking going on, you have been saying mummmma but it just means you are unhappy and it has no relation to me at all.

All my love always,