Sunday, December 28, 2008

Day 44 - Rough Night

"I Don't Know Why I'm Crying, But Now That I'm Crying, I Think I'll Go With It."

Back home again. I think Paige may be having some grandparent withdrawal. She has been fussing and crying any time she is set down. (She was held pretty much every waking moment for the last week.) She had a pretty tough time winding down to sleep yesterday evening. We were eventually able to get her to sleep, through the help of walking, bouncing, and her new Ocean Wonders Soothe & Glow Seahorse (talk about good timing on the Christmas gift!) Hopefully getting back into a routine will help her adjust a bit.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Day 43 - Christmas Presents

"My Little Wooden Rattle"

Paige is starting to grasp and hold onto things with abandon. I mus admit this was a little staged, as she only held it for a few seconds and I had to place it back in her hand. The rattle is a beautiful rattle that Valerie bought for Paige from a store called Peapods in St. Paul. It is a very cool store that has a lot of wooden toys. Good stuff. We didn't make it back to Minnesota today. We decided that the foggy wet crummy weather would not create the best conditions for driving. I think it was a good decision.

Day 42 - Baby's First Christmas

"Hi Grandpa!"

We had a whirldwind Christmas day in Wisconsin. Paige had a great time, and her grandparents, aunts and uncle and Santa treated her very well.

This picture also marks my return as photographer for the blog. Many thanks to valerie for her helping out since I was no longer in the same State as Paige.

Day 41 - Christmas Eve

"Thank You For NOT Putting Me in a Silly Hat Mom."

I arrived in time to head to church for the evening service. Paige did wonderfully. She didn't cry the entire time. I did have to make a quick exit during the candlelight carol to change a dirty diaper, but if I had to rank her against her peers (there were at least 3 other new born-ish babies) I'd have said she performed at the top of her class.

Day 40 - Relaxing by the Fire

"Uhh, I Think a Moose is Trying to Kill I'm not just being paranoid."

Looks like a comfortable place to relax, no?

Day 39 - Really? I mean REALLY?

"Anyone want to play some golf?"

Let me check...yep, still embarrassed for her.

Day 38 - You'll love this photo when you're in high school.

"Reindeer, Reindeer, Reindeer, I Caught One of Your Horns"

Yeah, I'm embarrassed for her.

Day 37 - Big Smile

" :-)"

Valerie was finally able to capture Paige smiling. This is the first time on film that has turned out. More amazing, this was taken on her cell phone!

Day 36 - Bon Voyage!

"I Just Gotta Get Out of This Place."

Valerie took this photo shortly before they headed for Wisconsin for the holidays. It was a hard few days without them, but they had a great time. She is starting to enjoy sitting up a little more with the help of chairs or pillows.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Day 35 - First Christmas

"Merry Christmas Mommy!"

Although this photo doesn't show it, Paige really likes the Christmas Tree.  I think it must be the lights.  Also, the small picture doesn't show it accurately, but her mouth is pretty much covered in milk.  She has become quite the messy eater of late.  

This will likely be the last photograph posted until after Christmas, since Paige and Valerie are now in Wisconsin while I am still here in Minnesota until Christmas Eve.  It is pretty exciting to have a daughter with whom we can celebrate the holidays.  It surely brings new meaning to them.  

So Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone.  See you soon!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Day 34 - Playing in the Crib

"Check It Out. I'm Totally Sitting Up."

Well, she is if you count me propping her up, where she sat for about five seconds before careening over head first. In all honesty though, she is making some pretty big strides with holding her head up all by herself. She is also gaining strength in her arms and legs. Note the beautiful blanket in the background. A mom from one of Valerie's teams made if for Paige. It is one of the best quilts that I've ever seen.

Day 33 - Is she related to Ralphie?

"Didn't you just spend all day telling me i have arms and legs? Where did they go?"

In an homage to A Christmas Story, Paige was all bundled up for some forays into the cold to visit Day Cares. We decided on the Children's Discovery Center in Little Canada, which coincidentally is where Jason and Bridgette's Daughter Kate is going. It seems like a really great place. I am sure we will talk about it more soon. Well not too soon. Valerie doesn't have to go back to work until February 16.

Day 32 - Month Two

"Is it April Yet?"

Well, we are one month into this rest of our lives thing, and I have to say it has been a blast. Looking forward to this next month. Paige is doing great, and every day is something new. She is starting to explore the world around her which is quite exciting.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Day 31 - One Month, Where Does the Time Go?

"So...Do I Get a Cake or Something?"

We had quite the busy weekend visiting with friends. Saturday evening was spent with our friends Jordan and Greg (who are expecting a baby in February!) and Katie. Sunday evening was spent with Breanna, Mike, Gretta and Jim. Plenty of good food, a few too many glasses of wine, and nice conversation. Valerie really appreciated getting out of the house I think.

December 14, 2008. Paige is officially 1 month old. A month in review: she has gained about 2 lbs. and grown at least 1 inch. She has been successful in holding her head up on her own. Her eyes are starting to focus, she is starting to grab things. All in all, quite the successful month I would say. Now we just have to work on potty training, selecting a college, and of course, mastering Guitar Hero.

Oh, and if anyone who may read this is wondering and hasn't heard, the January issue of Good Housekeeping Magazine is now out on news stands, and yes, I am pretty self-conscious about the fact that my face is currently in most super markets across the United States. It is a pretty wierd feeling.

Day 30 - Duck Foot Pajamas

"Yep, I've Got Little Ducks on My Feet, Jelous?"

Baby Clothes. Bizarre things can be so cute.

Day 29 - Slumber Ball

"I'll Just Hang Out Here if you Don't Mind."

Babies will sleep in the most amazing places and distorted little shapes.

Day 28 - My New Best Friend

"Nice to Meet You, Despite My Unhappy Face"

Paige and Valerie had a visit from our friend Bridget and her daughter Kate, who was nine months old. It is amazing to see the difference that just a few months will bring.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Day 27 - Moose Country

"Can you keep it down back there? I'm trying to sleep."
Paige had her first Moose Country experience tonight. I was a little worried before we left, because she was getting quite fussy. In the end, the experience was peaceful, relaxed, and full of Tijuana Sauce. What more could you ask for? It was essentially everything that any previous trip to Moose Country was ever like, well, except for the Tijuana sauce. What do they put in that stuff? Crack maybe?
This also officially marks the first photograph in the blog that was taken with our point and shoot Canon. I think it is the SD700 IS. Works just fine in a pinch if you ask me.

Day 26 - Life In Motion

"Hey, what you got there?"

So, babies move. A Lot.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Day 25 - I Like All the Lights

"Huh, that is bright. I think I'll stare at it."

Paige seems to be very excited about lights these days.
Her pupils are also adjusting to different light situations. Pretty exciting stuff huh?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Day 24 - Drat, Foiled Again!

"Mom, I Don't Feel So Good."

Given their performance of late, I think if I was a Packer fan, I'd probably puke on myself too. Seriously, can it be considered child abuse to allow your wife to dress your poor child up as a Packer fan? I should look into this...

Monday, December 8, 2008

Day 23 - First Time at the Cabin

"So, let me get this straight, you drive for three hours, then you just nap a lot? I'm in."

We went on our first road trip as a family of four this weekend. We packed up the trusty Toyota Matrix and headed on over to Valerie's Dad's cabin near Tomahawk, Wisconsin. It was a nice relaxing weekend. Paige did very well in the car. (which I mean she slept the entire time in each direction!) Hopefully this continues.

Day 22 - Crib Sweet Crib

"Yeah, This is MY Crib, and My Pink Stuffed Pig. What's It To YOU?"

Valerie took today's photo, we were headed to her Dad's cabin right after work, so she stepped in and took a great shot of Paige in her crib.

Day 21 - Help is Here

Paige had a visitor all week this week. Alice, Valerie's Mom was able to come up and help out for a few days. I think by the end we were pretty spoiled with all of the help.

Day 20 - Tummy Time

"I'm not so sure about this "tummy time" stuff"

Paige is starting to get her daily tummy time, and she is about as excited about it as when I have to suck snot out of her nose, which in case you were wondering, is not very much. Once she figures out that she need to use her neck muscles rather than those in her forehead, I am sure it will go much better.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Day 19 - Interaction

Paige is starting to notice her surroundings a little more, and we think she may have discovered that she has feet in addition to her hands. Exciting stuff. Someday soon she'll probably be noticing us more than just someone holding her, feeding her, changing her or poking and prodding her.

Day 18 - Late Nights, Low Light

"I think I've had enough of the camera flash."

Since returning to work, I have realized the limitations of my camera lens. It is the kit lens that came with the D40 body, 18-55mm zoom lens with a 3.5-5.6 variable aperture. The available light is pretty much non-existent, so handholding photos (usually at 1/15 or longer) is very difficult. I think my next purchase when i have the funds will be the Nikkor AF 50mm f/1.8D. It doesn't auto-focus on the D40, but I don't think that should be a big problem. What I do know is the on-camera flash annoys Paige, even with my home made diffuser. Since I am not home when the sun is shining, it makes it tough to get pictures with good lighting. The simple diffuser really helps, but I think that having a wider aperture to work with will be very helpful. Using a flash is a necessity some times, but it would be nice to be able to rely on it less.

Day 17 - Football

"Go Pack Go...No Pack No."

Turns out my new priority on Sunday is to make sure that I am up first and the one to dress Paige. Enough is enough! Ok, so maybe she looks cute, even if she is wearing clothes from the hated Packers.

Day 16 - Late Night Feedings

"Sleep? What is Sleep?"

Paige needs to eat, often and a lot. Generally it works out that I am able to give her the last meal of the night so Valerie can get some sleep (she graciously takes the 4 am feeding). Then I take the early feeding of the day when I get up for work, and Valerie then sleeps in a little later. Apparently this will start to change eventually when she starts to sleep longer, or so we're told.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Day 15 - Big "Grey" Eyes

"Look Into My Big Grey Eyes and Tell Me What You See"

So apparently babies eyes take several months to turn into their final color. This is one of the many things that I have learned about babies over the course of the last two weeks. i am guessing that her final eye color will probably be green, but alas it is one more surprise that is yet to come.

Day 14 - Happy Thanksgiving!

"So...Baby, Huh?"

Thanks giving is probably my favorite holiday.

We had the entire Haapala Family over for Thanksgiving this year, and it was a blast. Paige was able to see her cousins Morgan and Max, Aunties Jane, Nicole and Becky, Uncles Jay and Kelly, and Grandpa Will and MorMor Teri. Plenty of turkey, stuffing and gravy was had. It was delightful.

Day 13 - Baby's Best Friend

"Fuzzy Pillow, Quit Moving."

Kaija has been slowly warming to Paige over the last two weeks. I believe she has finally accepted that Paige is here to stay, but she doesn't go out of her way to be near her. All in time I am sure.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Day 12 - Time for a "walk"

"It's Walking Time...and by walk I mean bundle me up and push me around in a stroller."

The weather warmed up enough to get out of the house with Paige. Valerie bundled her up, grabbed Kaija and they were on their way.

Day 11 - Crib Time

"Finally, I Can Get Some Peace and Quiet!"

Paige spent her first night in the crib. She hated her basinette, so we were happy to oblige.

Day 10 - Fine Right Here

"I'm just fine right here, thanks."

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Day 9 - On Wisconsin?

I have to admit it, I am a Wisconsin Football fan more by default than anything else, so I am ok with her mother convincing Paige to root for the beloved Badgers. Now the packers...THAT is going to be a problem for years to come.

Day 8 - Baby Feet

"Nice Feet...For Kicking."

Baby Feet are pretty amazing. They are so tiny yet seemingly made up of all the parts of regular-sized grown-up feet. Well, except for cuteness. because obviously anything miniature is inherently cute.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Day 7 - Should I Stay or Should I Go?

"Grasping the Early Morning Light"
This morning before work the sun was shining into our dining room window just perfectly, so I spent a few minutes taking photos of her. I had to say goodbye to her and head to work. It is pretty hard to leave her at home.

Upon review of the first week of this blog, it seems like my style of photographing (or perhaps a rut...already?) is developing. I promise in the next week to try and take photos of more than just close ups of her (adorable, cute, darling) face. At least today was somewhat of a departure, seeing as the focus of the photograph is her hand, and it is in portrait orientation instead of landscape. I guess that is why it is good to analyze ones own work, to see if we fall back on those things that make us comfortable.

Day 6 - Feeding Time

"Hey, that camera is NOT my milk. what gives?"

My last day at home before having to return to work was Wednesday. Paige and I were able to spend some quality time together while valerie went to get her hair done. Of course, being as this was my first time home alone with her, she decided to have a meltdown.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Day 5 - Back to Reality

"Is It Always Rainbows and Lolipops?"

Sadly no.

Day 4 - Smartwool Socks

"Smartwool = Happy Baby = Happy Dad"

As being modeled by Paige, Smartwool socks come in miniature. Thanks go out to her Great Aunt Melanie for them.

they are awesome, in size large or size itty bitty. that is all.

Separate note: More pictures of Paige are going to be posted on Valerie's new flickr page. the web site address is :

That way more bandwidth and storage capacity can be dedicated to photos of her.

It will be easier to upload more pictures and have it more managed that trying to combine it with my flickr page, which is

I will upload some of the photos to my flickr page as well, but not all of them.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Day 3 - Coming Home.

"Time to Come Home...Finally."
Paige soon after she came home from the hospital. No more gross fluorescent lighting!

Day 2 - Sunlight

"Here Comes the Sun"

Paige had her first view of the Sun today. She determined that it was bright. Subsequently she shut her eyes for about two hours.

Day 1 - Paige Julia is Here!

At 11:56 am, on November 14, 2008, Paige Julia was brought into the world. This blog is dedicated to the first year of her life. One picture each day will be selected and posted to the blog.

Welcome Paige,

Love your Mother Valerie and Father Jan.

"what's with all the lights?"

Shortly after delivery, Paige was all cleaned up, wrapped up like a burrito and ready to snuggle with Mom.