5.30.2009

Having a baby changes everything...

Just a few simple "new mama" observations I've made in the past two and a half years:

You learn how to eat, clean and do pretty much everything with one hand (including typing, if you hadn't already mastered that skill).

You typically smell like a combination of spit-up, apple juice, laundry detergent, grape jelly and toothpaste...mainly because all of those things are soaked into your clothes (most days by noon).

You would rather have your sleeping baby on your chest than be sleeping like a baby (well, most of the time anyway) just so you can hear the sweet sounds they make.

Coffee is like a drug. You could drink it by the gallon (but you don't...because then you AND your baby would NEVER SLEEP).

Pacifiers are your best friend...along with that burrito sleep wrap thingie...and the Boppy...and a good shower (for you, not the baby of course).

You still have a baby belly - only now it's not so cute to strangers.

You lose the ability to park in those special "expectant mother" spots at the store...and despite the fact you are carrying a 30 pound baby car carrier and a diaper bag and dragging your toddler behind you, no one opens the doors for you either.

On the rare occasion you go to the store without your kids you will keep thinking you forgot something...("Did I put on underwear?!?"...Note to Self: You put on your underwear; you just feel naked without your kids.)

Staying up until 2 a.m. is not what it used to be.

You look at other people's babies and you wonder how old they are...and how much they are doing developmentally...and you hope you're doing it all right (because you can't help but feel there is something you could do differently/better)...

You are sleep-deprived and a little loopy...
You do more laundry than you ever thought possible...
and you wash bottles until your hands wrinkle...
but it is the most rewarding, amazing experience of your life...

So try to remember that in a flash that sweet little baby will be grown up
and you have to just soak up every precious, crazy, stressed out, hilarious, awe-struck, sleep-deprived moment that you can.

5.29.2009

Photos from Aunt Melanie...

Aunt Melanie sent over some pictures she took while she and Connor were down here visiting. She's a good aunt because I never ended up getting pictures myself...

You know Connor must be thinking "What did I do???"
[Don't take it personal Connor, she's just grumpy when she's hungry]
...then Connor makes his hungry face...
Logan puts on the charm...
and seems to be pretty happy about the two newest family members...
...but it doesn't take too long before he decides he's over sitting still...

...He'd rather be singing

(His shirt says "Rock Legend", and let me tell you, this kid really can rock out some mad tunes...you know, like Wheels on the Bus, The ABC song and The Itsy Bitsy Spider...) (...and just in case you are wondering why our little Rock Legend is rocking out on a pink microphone with a purple trike in the background, it's because they belong to his cousin Gracyn)

Thanks Aunt Melanie for all the pictures :)

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

5.28.2009

Lauren Thoughts (First Edition)

I got the camera out to take Lauren's one month photos and Logan couldn't help but to join in (even though he wasn't wearing pants at the time...and usually hates to have his picture taken).

He wanted to "talk" about things (like going on the potty and reading library books and getting to eat M&M's [nem-nems]). He also wanted to sing songs (one of his favorite things to do).
p.s. If some of these photos look a little blurry it is because I was doing my best to balance a newborn in a chair with her brother singing songs using hand motions and almost hitting her in the face about 10 times (bless his heart, he's so dang cute when he sings).

Oh, and Logan is wearing blue training pants. (We are in the process of potty training). I promise we dont normally dress him like that.
"...ok so baby sis-er, I go poo-poo on da potty en den I get two nem-nems..."

"Ew, that sounds kinda stinky..."
"...but you know, those nem-nem things do sound pretty good..."
"Are you hiding any of those nem-nems in your cool blue pants? I'm getting pretty hungry..."
"No? oh ok. Keep singing then, that's fine..." "Yes, I am listening, I promise..."

Logan: "...and the driver of da bus goes "All 'board! All 'board!"

Lauren: "Excuse me big brother. Um, Mama, you gonna come fix me? My back is starting to hurt..."

"Wow, that was really good singing Big Brother. Now, tell me again about these nem-nems you speak of..."

5.27.2009

one month



Our little girl is one month old today! Hard to believe how fast this month has gone by. (How did June creep up on us so fast???).

Admittedly, Lauren has spent most of the past month with her eyes closed, but I figured I'd make note of what we've experienced with her in the past month. I think the thing that I find myself doing the most is comparing what life with her is like compared to the first time around. I am much more relaxed and she is too (just being honest).

- She was born with blue eyes like her brother but lacks those long eyelashes he was blessed with. She has more pink-toned skin and peach fuzz on her head (Logan was bald until he turned 2). We dont think she looks a thing like Logan and so far her personality is totally different than his was as a newborn. She is completely laid back, easy-going and rarely cries (even at night when she wakes up for a feeding it is usually more of a whine than a cry).
- She eats and sleeps well -- or at least she did until early Sunday when she gave her last poop for three days and it scared us to death. (Never had that issue with Logan and we were getting used to the fact that she went after every meal.). She slept without waking up for food (not like her at all) and I worried myself silly. I called the doctor's office and apparently it is not a concern until FOUR OR FIVE DAYS later...hmmmm. Well anyway she made up for it last night with about 17 poopy diapers in a row and consuming about 4 bottles in the span of three hours. (And yes, I have never been so happy to see poop).
- She is still peeling like a lizzard, especially on her feet which seem to be growing faster than anything. (I'm kidding!!! Her feet are long and skinny so they look really big).
- She fusses when being put in the car seat but falls asleep in it about a minute later. She seems to enjoy getting a bath (she doesn't make a peep). She likes a pacifier but only one kind. She likes to be around people and sleeps best when there is plenty of noise and commotion around.
- She is probably about 10 pounds or so now and can fit into some 3 month clothing. This literally amazes me. I feel like I should be changing her clothes five times a day just so she can wear all the cute clothes she was given. (But surprisingly she can stay in an outfit for about 24 hours before we need to change it. I think this is mostly because I really came to appreciate the value of burp cloths and bibs this time around).
- She loves the Boppy. She is almost guaranteed to fall asleep if we set her in it. (Don't worry, we keep a close eye on her when she's resting in it).
- She loves to sleep on my (or anyone's) chest. It is the best feeling in the world.
- She has changed and blessed our life in so many ways. Thank you God for blessing us with such a sweet little miracle.





5.24.2009

This is Caroline...isn't she adorable? Seems like it was not that long ago we were going to Caroline's baptism. Time sure does fly.
(Caroline and her brother, Ryan)

Our dear friends Jay and Anita came over last night and completely spoiled us. Jay cooked dinner and made dessert and brought another dinner for another night! As if that wasn't enough, they came bearing gifts. Ryan and Caroline even made pictures for Logan and Lauren. We are so blessed to have friends like Jay and Anita! Thank you all so much for thinking of us and taking such good care of us. We love you!

5.20.2009



Sometimes I look at Lauren and I laugh because I see myself in her (I see a blend of Ryan too). Those chubby cheeks and little folds at the top of each ear - she got those from me for sure.

She looks a lot like my baby pictures to me - although I seem to think this more than my own parents, so maybe I am wrong...

I can't get over how much she is growing and changing already...the newborn clothes won't fit much longer (not that I really expected them to with a 9 pound newborn), and the little red spots in her eyes are now gone. She shakes her leg sometimes when she is cold and it reminds me of Logan and how he used to quiver his lip (both just little neurological things that eventually change over time).

Logan is still doing well and loving having Daddy at home. We've watched movies and played and worked on puzzles and gone to the library and cleaned his room top to bottom...but more importantly we are getting in much needed quality time for all of us and we love it.

The rain has been coming down non-stop for several days and it is supposed to keep raining for the next few days. I am starting to feel a little stir crazy from not being able to spot the sun. Hopefully we will make up for it on Monday and get to spend the day by the pool.

How's your week so far?

5.16.2009

Lauren


She slept for eight hours (8:30 p.m. to 4:30 a.m.) on Thursday night

Her umbilical cord fell off yesterday evening (Ryan called me in the room as he was changing her diaper and noticed it was off...my first thought was how did she get poop all the way up on her belly? and then I realized what happened...DUH)

She's adjusting to life in this crazy house just fine. She's had the dog accidentally scratch her (she never even woke up from her sleep), Logan constantly kiss and half-smother her with love (she seems just fine with that), my obsession with covering her in lotion (she's peeling) and Ryan's adjusting her in the car seat one million times.

5.14.2009

Connor

We got a little surprise when Melanie and Connor decided to come down to Florida with Mimi and Poppy this week.

We were so thrilled to get to see Connor - we didn't think we would get to meet him for quite a while. It was really amazing to see Connor and Lauren (born just 5 days apart) next to each other. I only got a couple of photos but of course will be taking more over the next few days as we spend more time together.


I can't wait to see how they grow up together and how much they will change over time.

...And Mimi finally got to meet Lauren (two weeks after she was born!) and I didn't get a picture of them together (even though Mimi is the one holding her in the picture above). I have lots of catching up to do.

Photos



Just a couple of quick photos I took for the grandmas and great-grandmas for Mother's Day.

As you can see, Lauren is quickly learning to support her own head and neck. (haha)

Seriously, taking photos of these two is no easy task. Thank goodness we have Jennifer Mosley to take our family photos. We had our family/newborn shoot today and she did such a great job - between Lauren's 32 bottle feedings and Logan half smushing his sister when asked to lay next to her, Lauren peeing all over the place when she was naked and my hair constantly falling in my face (not able to do anything about it because I'm holding a hungry newborn), she somehow managed to get some great shots (as usual).

5.12.2009

bonding

I have been trying to get a picture of L and L together for days, but neither one seemed to want to oblige...then this morning Logan quietly crawled onto the play mat where Lauren was lying down and reached for her little hand.

He just talked to her softly, smiled at her and watched her lay there and make those sweet baby noises.

I am loving every moment these two are getting to bond. I just never expected to get it in a photo (and it makes me totally mushy just looking at them together).

p.s. Sending out a very special Happy Birthday to my sister Corey who turns 24 today. I was 24 when I had Logan so I would say it is a great year :) (Um, not that she is planning on having any babies any time soon...I'm just sayin').

5.10.2009


Today - Mother's Day - is May 10. Two days from my original due date of May 12, but tomorrow our sweet little Lauren will be two weeks old. She came earlier than expected, yet perfect in God's own timing. As we made our way to the hospital that morning I knew there was the possibility she would be coming but I didn't know for sure what to expect or how I would feel.

But now that she is here, I am in awe of her. I really had no idea I could feel so much love yet again - even though everyone said that this is how it would be.
Honestly, I am still amazed that I am a mother of TWO. I no longer have a child, I have children. CHILDREN. I will admit - I was afraid of being outnumbered; of letting my post-partum hormones take over and have the new mama craziness take over again. I was afraid of yet again going through the rough months of colic (and the hours each day feeling so helpless in how to control it). I was afraid of losing my hair in clumps again. I was afraid of breastfeeding not working because I really, really wanted it to. I was afraid that I would not be able to share my attention between two kids as one frazzled mama. I was afraid knowing what to expect and what not to expect this time around...

Yet, now, two weeks later many of those fears are gone. I have come to realize that every baby is different, every pregnancy and recovery from pregnancy is different. It has not been perfect, but I could not ask for more...and if things don't stay this way, that is OK too. I can handle it, or I can at least do my best to handle it. But at this point I have full time help, a baby who sleeps five hours at a time at night and eats like nothing I have ever seen. I have a husband who gets up and feeds and changes our sweet girl without hesitation, and a little boy who wants to check on his sister and kiss her all the time. It is good. Very very good.

...And not to say we don't or wont have our frazzled moments...oh surely we will...but I have come to see that I am more of a mama than I sometimes give myself credit for, and I have support that I should have always remembered was there for me (I kind of thought I could do it by myself last time around...).

I have come to appreciate the fact that motherhood is a process...it is something to be taken one day at a time, counting your blessings along the way if you can take a moment to do so. (Some days that is easier than others).

So today that is my plan...to just sit back and be thankful for this life God has blessed me with...and I will kiss these two kids and hug them and soak up every moment because they are truly what this day is all about.

Happy Mother's Day.
xoxo
h

5.08.2009

Mother's Day

Today was our first day at home without visitors

Ryan took Logan for a bike ride

I snuggled with Lauren on the couch and worked on her baby book

We had some lunch

Then we took the opportunity to catch up on some sleep (every one in the house asleep at the same time is quite something)

We watched some of the TPC

and we enjoyed the time to be a family of four.

Quite simply, it was the perfect day...my ideal Mother's Day, just a few days early :)

5.07.2009



...playing around this morning with the picky sticky labels.

I admit it felt a little weird to be putting a "0" on this sweet baby girl...oh well, it will make sense next month when it actually has the word "month" on it.

5.02.2009

p.s.

Forgot to mention:

My sister got married on Saturday and the wedding was almost as beautiful as she was.

I cried even though I said I wouldn't (I was afraid in my hormonal state that I wouldn't stop, but I did pretty good I have to say) but it all started as I looked across the way to my husband, the dashing groomsman, remembering how we said our vows six years ago.

Corey and Matt drove off into the sunset in a beautiful vintage Mustang and took off for their honeymoon in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico (and yes, they are now safe at home and free from any pork flu virus or whatever)...

My parents left for their vacation in Aruba on Sunday...

My brother flew back to Iraq...

My in-laws were still in North Carolina visting baby Connor...

and we had a baby.

Amazing how much can happen in just a couple of days.

Looking forward to having everyone home and getting to see our new baby girl soon...

First Bath and Other Adventures

On Friday Lauren went in for her first visit to the pediatrician.


She left the hospital weighing 8 lbs 1 oz, but was up to 8 lbs 3 oz at her apppointment on Friday so she is doing really well in her eating and weight gain. (This girl can eat, trust me).


You may have noticed that she has a small blood vessel spot in each eye (pressure spots from birth) but it will go away in the next couple of weeks.


That night she got her first sponge bath and she didn't care for it too much...



That's big brother Logan holding on and peeking over the sink - wondering why she doesn't enjoy bath time as much as he does :)

...and just a few pictures of all the sweet ways Lauren has been welcomed home. Thank you all so much for thinking of us, sending your kind regards, food, cards and love.






Hope you all are having a nice weekend.

xoxo

h

5.01.2009

settling in...



Last night I slept for a total of about six hours...I have a precious new baby girl, an amazing little boy who told me yesterday "I so glad you home" and a husband who went grocery shopping and cooks and cleans. I may as well have won the lottery.



We're adjusting to life as a family of four one day at a time. The time is flying...I can't believe today is Friday and she is five days old. I can't believe my family will finally be in town in a couple of days and meet our sweet girl when she is a week old.
Logan is adjusting to life as a big brother seemingly well considering he was sick (and passed it on to his Mama!) and still catching up from a long weekend of wedding festivities. He has had a great time with Stephanie and Todd, who were such a blessing and stepped in to watch him (and all three dogs) while we were in the hospital. They stayed here so he could have his bed and meanwhile gave up their own comfort for Logan to have his. We cannot thank you guys enough.

Meanwhile, Logan shocked us on Wednesday night and went pee-pee in the potty for the first time. In my emotional state I cried and laughed and I think he thought I was a little crazy...but the fact that he did it on his own with so much going on right now just reminds me how lucky we are to have such a great little boy who has handled this transition so well.

Poppy made his arrival back into Jacksonville yesterday and Logan was thrilled to have his buddy back. Mimi, Logan misses you too. He has been asking about yall every day since you left. Poppy is such a comfort and best buddy to Logan, I was overjoyed to see him so happy.
Our computer has had some issues so I've been quick to download pictures but have not had much of a chance to post. Hopefully the computer will cooperate over the next couple of weeks until we can get it repaired.

Today Lauren goes to the pediatrician for the first time and Ryan has his infusion (which was supposed to be on Monday but was postponed due to our little surprise). I am sure we will have a house full of visitors this weekend but I will try to post more pictures as I get the chance.

In the meantime, love and thanks to all of you for everything...


xoxo

h