Friday, December 20, 2013

Maggie’s First Thanksgiving

Editor's Note: This posting was actually written right after Thanksgiving but delayed because of pressing baby-related concerns.

The biggest achievement of the past week came last Tuesday when Maggie had a major breakthrough with holding her head up. Previously, all tummy time was filled with tears, but she suddenly began to like it, propping her arms up and looking around with her head.

The newspaper published a day early so we were able to leave Wednesday afternoon for Ashley’s grandparents’ house in Somerville, Tenn. When we got there, Maggie was in a very good mood, and we tried on a Santa outfit Ashley’s grandmama got her. It was very festive.

On Thursday, we feasted with Ashley’s family. Charlie appreciated slices of cheddar cheese being added to the menu, along with the ham, sourdough bread and new snickerdoodle bread along with many other delicacies. Ashley continued her venerable tradition of reviewing her parents’ and aunt and uncle’s wedding albums. She says she gleans new information every time, and this year proved no different; she discovered a similar look in her granddaddy and his father in photos from different weddings.

That afternoon we left on the long, long drive across Tennessee on I-40 to visit Charlie’s parents. Maggie again traveled very well, sleeping up until about 15 minutes from our destination. Unfortunately, that also meant she had not eaten in six hours. She was at full pitch when we arrived; her lung capacity impressed our hosts. After a good meal, though, she was her jolly self, and Pap, Gran and Auntie Em enjoyed playing with her.

Our Black Friday shopping was limited to a trip to the Oak Ridge goodwill, where we scavenged several items for the Wallace family’s used gift exchange. Visitors to see Maggie included Pop and Tanya and Lauren.

On Saturday, we visited Aunt Donna’s house for Thanksgiving/Grandmother and Granddaddy’s 60th wedding anniversary surprise party. The happy couple received tickets to the Biltmore mansion and a book with 52 questions about their life from family members, which they are to fill in one week at a time. A worn-out Maggie took perhaps her longest daytime nap ever, more than two hours. She even slept through Uncle Mark drilling a hole in the same room she was sleeping as part of a complicated attempt to install a cellphone signal booster at the remote log cabin on the lake. After we got home, she tricked Gran and Emily by yawning and looking sleepy, but waking up after they put her sleep sack on her. After that she was very happy and laughed while sitting in the recliner. A true Smith, no doubt, who loves a good easy chair.

Maggie slept throughout the visit in a pack and play in Gran and Pap’s room. They really loved having her there, and Pap was very fast to pick her up at the slightest stirring.
Maggie’s development continued at a rapid pace.

In the culmination of a trend, Maggie finally enjoyed her bath on Saturday night, which Pap and Gran administered. She also began wearing this week her sleep sack for both naps and night-time sleep, which seemed to lessen how much she fought sleep. Her love of ceiling fans, first discovered at church in Indianola, continued to blossom. She discovered them within minutes of entering DJ’s house and church in Somerville. She continued talking more and enjoys interactive “conversations” where she can smile and laugh and make sounds back.

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