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Friday, August 31, 2012

I couldn't wait.

My postpartum body is so funky. So squishy and wide, and weird and big boobs! and flubby tummy! And most of all, it's really, really uncomfortable. And very hard to dress. I know I'm not alone in that feeling.

I'm struggling with that, big time. It might even be one of the reasons I don't necessarily feel any pressure to get dressed in the morning, because, Why bother? Nothing works anyway. Everyone stay in pjs, hooray!

You wear maternity clothes for 7+ months. You're beyond excited to put on that elastic waistband when you've got a sweet baby belly going on, to let it all hang out, but when it's postpartum time? I'm all pack that ish up I don't want to see it for a very long, long time. And so that's what I did. At 1 week pp, I packed up all my maternity clothes, because, ew. I want a zipper and a button, pleaseandthankyou.

But the zipper and button pants (multiple sizes bigger than my normal jeans, mind you)? Not flattering. Not even a tiny bit. My shirts? Too tight. Accentuates the larger than life ta-ta's, and made me feel even more self conscious of my mid-section.

Every day, literally, feels like a battle with my closet. I stand there just willing something that magically makes me feel amazing, holds the capability for me to nurse in, and makes me feel confident comes floating out. It's stupid, really. Every day. I look. Every day. I find nothing to wear.

My husband has been more than gracious with me because there's been at least 3 different times I've asked to go out looking for "cute, flowy tops that hide my boobs and my tummy, that I can nurse in", and here, watch the baby, BYE! And pretty much, most times? I come home with 1 to 2 things, or nothing. (For me that is WEIRD, man.)

Last night I was with my sister-in-law, for a little browsing through Marshalls to find something...oh lord, please, anything. It also just doubled as a night out (or, well, 2 hours out) away from home-life, while Declan stayed home, cuddled a baby, and watched football. It works for us. Anyway.

I was telling her that I just got so used to everything looking and fitting just right when I went shopping with my pre-Lucy body, so much so, that I even rarely tried things on at the store. I just knew they'd fit if I grabbed a small or x-small, and I didn't really have to worry. Right now, it's so different, and kind of frustrating. I'm tugging and pulling at everything. Eh, this makes my arms look bulky, oh lord, too much boob-attention, oh, no, you can't have the snugness around the belly, etc, etc.

It's annoying.

And I don't like feeling uncomfortable. I don't. I mean, really--who does? But getting the taste of having a figure I was more than happy with last Fall has made me want that back, and as soon as possible please.

So that's why I didn't wait. I didn't wait the full 6-weeks-doctors-orders to vigorously exercise. I didn't take the full 6 weeks to keep eating like I'm still pregnant (because let's be honest, nursing makes you feel like a starved animal sometimes, too). Not for anyone else, but for me.

I know I have the ultimate excuse of you just had a baby! Your body was warped for 9 months! I get that. But, I want to feel comfortable in my own skin. I prefer fit over flub. I tasted that feeling last year and I want it back. Sitting around for another two weeks doing nothing about it wasn't helping.

Do I like tracking my food? Freaking no. I hate it.

Do I like having to think hardcore about just grabbing a handful of pretzels? NO. Absolutely not. 

Do I like spending naptime running on the treadmill instead of watching my DVR'ed shows? No. No. No. 

But I want to feel good. For me.

And that's why I couldn't wait.

***

Here's to hoping I have some good news to report for next week in the weight loss/inches lost thing. We'll see. I may have snuck on the scale today, but we'll see the official week's loss (it better be a loss!) on Monday.

***

Have a fabulous, long weekend friends.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Lucy, 1 Month Old.


Dear Lucy Girl,

One month ago was one of the most precious days of my life. I met you, on the outside, for the first time. I remember pulling your little body out and holding you close to me on my chest, like it was yesterday. And now, here we are---a whole month, sweet girl.

Your name, "Lucy" means "light". And a light you are. You definitely bring more joy and brightness to our lives, and even to your sisters life. You, literally, without even knowing it, light up her little face when she sees you each morning. She loves being your big sister.

I know at a month old you don't "do" much---but here's what I know about you so far:


You're a snacker, just like your sister. You don't eat very long, but you want to eat often. Great for you--bad for momma. You can sleep through heavy noises. Dog barking? So what. Sister screaming? Who cares! Vacuum going? What vacuum? You're pretty chill in that regard. You sleep better the closer you are to me. I don't blame you, it's comforting to be near momma---and I'm honestly soaking it up. On that same note, you really like to be held. Some days you'll happily go in the moby wrap, others days? Not so much. We roll with whatever.

You make the silliest faces. You're starting to squeak out a little coo here and there and giving us more smiles these days. But, we're still waiting for the real reactions and baby 'chat' to come. You don't mind tummy time, at all. You especially like it if you know we're right near you playing with big sister or something. You used to hate baths, but since we switched you to the big bath with Emeline, you LOVE it! We are so thrilled, because screaming-bathtimes are no fun. 


You still hate your diaper being changed, or outfit being changed--you pretty much just despise being nude. You have no real schedule yet. It's pretty much a sleep, wake a tiny bit, eat, sleep, etc. I can see a little pattern of habits forming, but I kind of let you do your thing.

You're sleeping next to me in the co-sleeper/bassinet and we go to bed around 10-11pm. You typically give me 3-4 hours of sleep, wake to eat, another few hours (normally only 2)....wake to eat, etc. Some nights are looooong, some nights are better. MOST of the time, you go back to sleep easily. Some nights you'll only fall asleep if you're snuggling next to me. I don't really care about any 'rules', sleep always wins in this house. We all need sleep so however we can get it, we'll go with it. ;)


You dislike being buckled in your carseat and you're pretty unhappy until the second the car starts and we're on our way, and then you'll fall asleep. If for some chance we stop the car for too long? You typically wake up MAD that how dare they stop the car! It doesn't surprise me too much, your sister was the same. 

You've just moved to size 1 diapers and you're still in newborn clothes. You weigh a whopping 10lbs 4oz now, and are 21" long!

Sweet Lucy, I stare at you all the time. I just love holding you, and spend many a big-sister-naptime with you in my arms. I just know how fast this all goes and I want to soak in all your sweet babyness, because it's so stinkin' precious and I just adore you so much.

Love being your momma, always. 

***

(and because everyone loves a comparison picture)

Random! (but some exciting!) things.

(This post will be all over the place. So there's that.)

Some of you probably saw on Instagram the other night that my sweet sister, Susan got engaged to her boyfriend, Jeff on Friday night. *insert girl shrieking now...yeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!* He planned a precious and romantic proposal and she's sporting the most lovely, shiny ring, ever. I'm super, beyond stoked for her, and we're excited to have Jeff a part of our family, he's a super cool guy and most of all, he makes my sister beyond happy and he treats her amazing. Now I can finally explain all those wedding things I've been pinning for the last few months. Dude, I was totally expecting this, so I had to be prepared

(she just blogged the engagement story, check it out)
totally ripped these pics from my sister, but, yay!
Your supportive comments on my post baby body round two post were so nice and encouraging. When I put stuff out there on my blog, I'm not gonna lie, it keeps me motivated. Because if I don't stick to it, then I have to tell all of you that I failed, and well, that sucks. But I'm harder on myself than any of you are, so my internal motivation is pretty decent, too. 

I decided, per the advice of many of you, to start doing Couch to 5K again because the walk/run intervals are actually more fat burning. So, at least to ease back up to 5K status, that's what I'm going to do. I ran yesterday using C25K and I started at week 3. Week 1 is just not challenging enough. Week 3 felt challenging, and I was even a little sore the next day. Tracking my food is going great, and I've made really good choices the last few days, too. So, yay.  Here's to hoping by next Monday I have some weight loss to show for the hard work.

--

Lucy has been here for one month, exactly, today. I don't care, I really don't care how cliche it is--I will never understood why time moves at warp speed once the baby is here, and at a snails pace the few weeks leading up to their arrival. A whole month? How?

My girls absolutely kill me daily with their cute ways. Emeline continues to wow-me when it comes to her sweet and gentle nature to Lucy, and I am smitten by them. I can't wait to watch their relationship grow. I'll be writing Lucy's 1 month post hopefully later today, when she wakes up enough for her little 1 month photoshoot. 



I've still yet to go out alone with the girls to some place like Target, the mall, the park, etc. I went to my parents again, and even out to breakfast with them, but having the extra set(s) of hands makes it too easy. I know I need to just do it, but I'm mostly feeling lazy about the fact that it requires me to look half decent in the morning and we all know that's nearly impossible for me. I'm more of a "get ready by 2pm" kinda girl. At least since Lucy has been here. 

We look forward to Daddy getting home every day because it normally means a fun outing, and well, let's be honest--the "hand-over" often occurs. Basically, mom gets to check-out for a while. 

Last Friday we went out to dinner, the four of us (still feels weird saying that), and then went to the pond at our favorite park. It was just what the doctor ordered. It couldn't have been a more perfect night weather-wise, and fun-wise. It was perfection. I even remembered to bring my camera, which, let's be honest--is kind of a big deal these days. I have to get back to documenting life. 


---

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, August 27, 2012

My Post Baby Body, round two.

Here we are, 4 weeks postpartum, and I think I'm ready to talk about this. Honestly, the only reason I even waited so long to talk about it at all is because I thought it'd be kind of a sore thing to talk about after having a baby. Oh that girl only cares about her body? She should be at home snuggling her baby. Pish Posh. 

Don't you worry, there has been absolutely NO shortage of baby snuggling around here.



But I admit it's been hard not to think about my get-the-body-I-worked-hard-for-back plan. If I'm being completely honest, I thought about this through my pregnancy. While I enjoyed a ton of crap food I probably shouldn't have ever eaten, if I'm being honest. Do I think I ate less as far as quantity of food goes than with my first pregnancy? Yes. I do. But I definitely didn't make great choices, and let's be honest here---cravings are a beast. They warp your mind and you forget everything you know when one hits. So, there's that.

The good news is, that I was all around more fit this pregnancy. I weighed a whole lot less to start than I did with Emeline. All that work I did last year was completely worth it to make this part easier and less daunting than it was last time.

For example, here I am at the end of both pregnancies. 

(forgive me for the bare belly pic...but it was literally the closest pic to the end I had...
less than 24 hours before Lucy arrived)

***

I gained 31 pounds exactly with each pregnancy. Kind of weird, huh?

So, this time around, I'm not waiting 7 or 8 months to kick my rear in gear to get fit again. Last time I was lazy. Last time I thought that was the body I was stuck with forever. This time? I know better. And since I got my body to a place I was very happy with last Fall, running 5K's and all, I know that's my goal again this time. Because ultimately, it's about health and feeling good, for me.

Postpartum comparison....well, there's no comparison. My uterus shrunk down pretty fast this time compared to last, and I'm not really sure why.



Honestly, that was the best part about this thing so far....I didn't walk around looking or feeling pregnant for weeks after like I did last time. In fact, I was shocked when I finally got the courage to look in the mirror at the hospital the day after Lucy arrived. I just expected it would look like last time.

The nurses made several comments about how my uterus went down much faster than most women when they'd do those annoying belly-push-checks.


So here it goes...Operation Lose The Weight, 2nd time around begins.

Stuff for this time around to note:

-I'm 4 weeks postpartum as of yesterday, and to be honest? My weight hasn't changed pretty much at all since week 2. But I haven't changed the way I eat, really--or done much exercise other than some walks here and there.

-I have exactly 21 pounds to lose to reach where I felt best and most fit. But who knows, I may go for more.

-I'm a little nervous this time because I'm exclusively breastfeeding. I wish I was one of those girls where bf'ing makes me shed pounds like whoa, but it DOESN'T. It actually makes me retain water and extra weight so I'm praying that I can still lose weight while nursing. It's important to note it could be a slower weight loss than last time for this reason. Who knows though, maybe I'll be surprised.

-I'll be following the weight watchers plan again, so I'll be tracking points. I started tracking as of this morning! Welcome back to my world, WW. Welcome back.

-I will run again. Last night was my first post-baby run and I went for a mile straight on the treadmill (because it was pouring rain). I'd always rather run outdoors, honestly. I was going to follow the C25K plan but I just hate the walk/run thing, so I'd rather just increase my mileage by .25 or .5 every few days until I'm back up to 5K running plus. I hope to run in a race by October/November. (I realize most people wait until the 6-week-check to run again, but honestly I know my body and I feel great. I've healed so much better and quicker than last time, too.)

-I will be taking my measurements today, too. Those are super important and were VERY important on my last weight watchers journey. Some weeks I'd have no weight loss, but would lose inches--so it kept me motivated.

****

And now...here's the sucky part for me. Posting my "before" pictures for this weight loss thing. Ugh. I hate it. My brain tells me to STOP! DON'T DO IT! Don't you have any pride? But I know I need to.

Here I am last night. Right before my run. And after having spaghetti for dinner a few hours before. Oh, and I'm wearing too tight running capris, hence all the bulging pudge. It hasn't even been a full month since I've had a baby. Okay. Excuses, excuses. Here it is.



Time to get healthy again. 

Let's do this.


Friday, August 24, 2012

Mothers of two (plus)...help the intimidated new Mom (of two). Thankyousomuch.

Not a ton of things intimidate me. I'm kind of a bring it on type of gal. But there are some things, definitely that do intimidate me a little.

I don't prefer crowds, but if it's for a good time, I'll still go and brave a big crowd. I get a little nervous around new people, but give me a few minutes and I'll be telling my best stories and hopefully we'll be fast friends. I'm not really into talking in front of my peers. Children? Teenagers, even? Sure. No problem. I was a teacher. But in front of my peers? Cue shaky voice and often tears (especially if it's to talk about something, well, emotional). 

Those things intimidate me.

Most other things...? Not really.

Oh. Wait. I forgot one.

A newfound intimidation.

Going out with two children. Alone.

....

      ....

            ....

I wish, so badly, that I was super cool about all this mom of two stuff, but I'm still not that great at it. I'm still learning it. 

I'm not even a tiny bit sure of what the heck I would do if suddenly my newborn was screaming in hunger, my toddler was melting down, and I had a cart full of things still to be purchased. Leave my cart abandoned? Grab my children and run for the hills? Die of embarrassment?

I just don't know. 

Prior to having two kids, I joked about when the baby got here, that I'd probably never leave my house. Well that little joke has somewhat become my reality. Because, dude, it is MUCH SAFER in the four walls of my home than out in public. Where scary ish happens. Where my kids can be crazies. Where toddlers can run out in parking lots. And moms can have heart attacks because, OH THE ANXIETY. And I ONLY HAVE TWO HANDS. 

Don't get me completely wrong, I've gone out with two kids alone to safe places. I've done the dance of trying to get out the door and down the steps (stinkin' townhome) with a newborn who just pooped up her back and needs a new diaper and outfit change, and the toddler who's walking out the door with food on her face that I forgot to wipe, shoes on the wrong feet, and then who suddenly decides to take her skirt off, just because. I've done the juggle of infant seat hanging off my arm, with larger than life diaper bag, all while holding a toddlers hand so she doesn't run out in the street and trying to shoo my dog away so he doesn't run for the hills causing me to look like even more of a lunatic than I already do. I've dropped my keys while trying to get the door locked behind me, almost got stung by bees, practically thrown out my back, have had both kids safely in the car, and then realized I forgot my sunglasses on the brightest.day.ever. 

Getting out the door, alone, with two kids? I can do that. Even though I look like I ran a marathon by the time I get in the car myself.

I can even go to safe places. Safe places= drive thru's (where children do not leave the car, ever), my parents house (because, again, safety of a home--and grandparents! yay! and extra hands for help! and a big yard to run!), Declan's parents house (again, safety of a home)....etc. 

With Declan? We can basically do everything. Because, one parent for each child. Right? Makes sense. Restaurants, shopping, normal'ish errands. 

But just me? I wish I felt like I could take on the world with this one, but I just don't.

I know exactly what I need to do.

I need to just do it. Then keep practicing. I need to do things that feel unsafe and figure out the right way to go about it. Do I wear the baby in the wrap? Strap the toddler in the cart? Bring the double stroller? Hide in a dressing room to nurse the baby if I have to? Bring the iPad for backup when those situations arise? 

I know. I know this seems silly--and to be honest, I hate to admit this intimidates me as much as it does. But it does. And one day I hope I look back and laugh at myself. I really do. But right now, it's kind of real--and it's kind of intimidating.

So there.

Now, quick! Give me all your tips, tricks, ideas and how you overcame this, so I don't become a decrepit hermit locked up in my townhouse all week with two children. Mmmk? Thanks :)

***





Thursday, August 23, 2012

hold you a little longer

Every year, around back to school time, even as a kid---I get a little emo. 

Probably it was more so mourning the loss of the care free summer. The late evenings out with neighborhood friends, playing 50 million rounds of capture-the-flag in my yard, sleeping in, dreading the cold morning bus rides...and most of all, the unknown.

Through my years of being a teacher? I equally dreaded back to school time. It's true. 

I'm not one of those people who gets excited about all the fresh new supplies out in stores. I don't really even get excited about a new schedule, a change of events, a new time to eat lunch, a new time for my planning period, or even the whole having new students-thing. 

Most of all, I dreaded the beginning-of-the-year meetings. 

Not to mention, the amount of talking you have to do the first week? Always, always, always gave me laryngitis. I wish I was kidding

All that to say. I really don't like back to school time. I don't. Never have. 

**

The last few weeks I've been seeing my friends post blog posts and instagram photos of their babies going off to school for the first time, whether it be preschool or kindergarten.

I don't know if it's just my mom nature or what, but every photo literally has me tearing up. I can feel a huge knot in my throat, both anxiousness and excitement, but mostly some kind of sadness that this was someones little baby, now going off to school, alone

My niece, who I swear yesterday was just a tiny little newborn I was visiting and cuddling in the hospital, is headed off to Kindergarten next week. I'm not even her momma and I'm kind of a wreck about it.

I think about the day it'll come for me. Most likely, this is my last 'school' year home with Emeline because next Fall she can go to preschool four mornings a week. Where I have to trust someone else is teaching and caring for her and loving her. Where I have to pray and hope that everything we've taught her has stuck and that it'll be practiced when we're not around. Where she gets to learn, grow and explore---and become an even better little person than she already is.

I can already feel the knot in my throat. 

I'm such a mom.

***

Last night, it was about 2am when I heard it. Lucy was doing her Beginning Stages of Fussing---she was hungry. She was next to me in her bassinet, wiggling and 'eh-eh' ing. I sat up, got myself situated, and reached over for my little squish. 

I began to feed her, and as usual--so I don't completely fall asleep, I slid my phone open and decided to open my google reader to see if anything new had popped up, and read a blog post or two. 

I saw that Kelle Hampton had a post written to her daughter, the night before she starts Kindergarten. And I knew. I just knew. If I read that? I'd be a mess. But yet, I did anyway.

Here I am, feeding my little baby, reading about how this beautiful mother wonders if she treasured all the time enough with her daughter before she became a kindergartener. Wondering if she should have spent one more minute rocking her before laying her back in her crib. Wondering if she should have read her one more book, kissed her squishy cheek just one more time. 

But also equally knowing how the unknown of school, and new situations, and new life lessons will be so good for her daughter. That uncomfortable moments and overcoming them will help her to become strong. 

cue tears.

Before I went to bed last night, I told Declan that I just can't wait for the day I can close my eyes and then wake up at 8am for the first time. 

My sleep deprivation was talking. I'm human. Sleep feels great. Awesome, really. And right now I don't get a ton of it--or uninterrupted, I should say. And most likely, I won't for a while. 

But after reading that, all I wanted to do was hold Lucy a little bit longer. I wanted to run into Emeline's room and cuddle with her in her tiny little bed. Because I know that in no time it's going to feel like 'they were just babies, and now they're off to school'

I already know it's true. The days are so long. Right now? My nights feel so so so long. But the years are short. So stinkin' short, and they go in a flash.

If you see me walking around with toothpicks in my eyes, it's because I'm trying not to blink.

**


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Fall Bucket List, 2012

UPDATED 2013 BUCKET LIST HERE

It's no real secret that my Fall Bucket List printable from last year blew up all over Pinterest. When I made it, I had no intention of that ever happening. In fact, I made it for my little family and decided to share it in case a few of my readers or friends wanted to print one, too.


Then it turns out, a lot of people used it. Which is awesome.

I saw that it's back floating on boards again because 'tis the season---but...it says TWO THOUSAND AND ELEVEN.

So I fixed it up a little, changing the year, and I also added my web address. Last year, I saw a little ugly side to the internet when I found multiple blogs claiming this was their own. Not gonna lie, seeing that sucks a little. But not only that, without the proper source, PEOPLE COULDN'T EVEN PRINT THE PRINTABLE! duh. Hence the entire purpose.

It was my own fault for not watermarking it last year, but again--I had zero intention that it would really get out there. And, well, lesson learned.

Watermark your 'ish people. Oh, and cite properly if you're out there pinterest'ing. It's just the right thing to do.

Note: this is NOT the printable

So, if you'd like an updated one for your home this year---feel free to get the printable here. Click to magnify and print as an 8x10 (with a bit of trimming), or keep smaller for a 5x7. Put it behind a glass frame and you can check off your bucket list with a dry erase marker! Fun fun fun.

****

One more time, HERE IS THE PRINTABLE.

Just to be clear. Ahem.

****

Happy (almost) Fall! (how did that happen?!)

...and then they bathed.

As a young kid, I remember loading in the tub with some or all of my siblings for nightly bath time. Honestly? I think as a child, from my perspective, I thought it was all about playing!in!the!tub!

So much fun, right? But, go figure-it dual purposes as a place to get clean from The Day's Funk that Toddlerville brings, too.

Who knew.

But this is one of those things I was excited about when adding to our family. I know it might sound silly, but the thought of Emeline in the tub with her sister was one of those things that always popped into my mind when I tried to picture my girls together before Lucy was here.

Granted, it'll be a ton more fun down the line when Lucy can sit up, and splash, and steal toys from her sister---but last night marked one of the many 'firsts' with my girls together. The sisters.

Because? They bathed. Together. The first time since little Lucy has been here.

And I was kinddddd of afraid Emeline would hate it because dude! This baby's little seat is taking up all her "smimming" room. But, she was ecstatic. Tried to help me wash her. Cried when we took her out of the tub because, "no! Lucy next to me! Lucy next to meeeeeee!" And she didn't even get mad or annoyed when Lucy did her how-dare-you-get-me-wet bloody murder scream in an echoey bathroom. Nope, not at all. Em rolls with the punches, love that girl to death. And she loves her sister.

***

So, of freakin' course---I documented this. Special moments for this momma. Call me crazy.


 A very short video (mainly for me, because I'm all afraid of never having any video of my kids, ever)---and warning! warning! warning! It has a crying newborn in it. If you don't like that sound (who does?), do not watch it.



And since it sounds like I torture my kids from that video--I swear once she's changed, warm and bundled again, she is happy as a clam. See?
(I used to take mirror pics like this with Eme....all the time--it showed how teeny tiny she was! So, yes, Lucy must have some, too.)

I love my babies. So much. In case you couldn't tell. ;)

***

Add that to the Book of Firsts.

Monday, August 20, 2012

3 week old, Miss Lucy


***

She's pretty much amazing.

Monday Minutes

-On Friday night we went out to Toys-r-Us on the hunt for some fun, age appropriate and more educational-like toys for Emeline. The few things she got were much deserved, and both necessary for her and me, too.  She kept saying, "Special toys for Enna-mine!" I love this age in so many ways. It was also so much fun to see her and her sister in one cart together--it was a first. :)


-Since I've been on maternity leave with work, I literally have had NO IDEA what day it is, or the date, or anything. I feel like I just live in la-la-land over here when it comes to that stuff. Thank God for my iPhone calendar to semi keep me on track.  (In case you're wondering, I took 6 weeks off. Even though I work from home I still knew I needed that mental break when learning to navigate the road of two children. Hello sleep deprivation.)

-I'm being told that my 3 week old is losing her newborn'ness and while I know it's true my heart kind of hurts thinking about it. I'm emotional, give me a break. But ohhh newborns...I just adore them in every way. To think I'm only nine days away from having a ONE MONTH OLD makes me want to throw down and make all clocks stand still RIGHT NOW. (Funny how when you're pregnant time is all creeeeeping by, and bam! baby is here! LIGHTENING SPEED AHEAD. Sigh.)


-On Saturday around lunchtime I was getting super antsy and cabin fever'ish---and we still had about an hour until naptime. It was GORGEOUS out---gorgeous....so we decided it'd be fun to go get lunch, and eat at the park and go play by the pond as a family. Sounds simple enough.

We should have known going out that close to naptime was an issue to begin with--but let's just say, it became a series of misfortunate of events. One meltdown led to another. My toddler refused to eat.  She bit down on my finger (which she's never done) SO HARD when I tried to feed her a piece of hot dog, so much so that I cried. Yep. Then she laughed. And laughed. Saying, "That's SO FUNNY, mommy!" We got attacked by tons of bees, who started going in/around/all over our drinks, food, etc. We packed up so fast, and ran from the bees, and ended up back in the car within 10 minutes. No park. No pond. No fun. It was a huge fail of a supposed "fun time". Boo.

-Last night we had my sister in law's 30th birthday party. It got rescheduled from Saturday to Sunday because her family got sick with the stomach bug, but it still came out to be a lovely party, even a day later.  


-I am thankful to GOD that baggy/flowy shirts are all the rage right now, it could NOT be at a more convenient time for this muffin-topped, ginormous boob'ed momma. Seriously. Just...seriously. Even more than my muffin top I'm way, way, way self conscious of my milk makers. Sorry, it's true. It takes me a few months to kind of 'regulate'---and right now, they are big. And so bulky that I swear they make even my arms stick out on the sides. Everything about me just looks even more massive thanks to these knockers.

also: I only look semi-put together b/c these are weekend pictures--when my husband is home. me during the week=SCARY

-I'm totally contemplating starting to run (slowly) prior to my 6 week clearance. I know there are lots of women who do that, and my body feels pretty good now. I think I'm just ready to get this show on the road. We'll see.

-I'm so disappointed in myself and my lack of having my Real Camera out lately. So, so disappointed. Since we're inside in the cave house all day it just feels so uninspiring for pictures. Someone slap me, because my poor 2nd baby needs some legit photos besides instagram.

-Did you see the ridiculously cute video of Emeline from the weekend? Go watch it, now. You won't be sorry.

***

Sigh. Oh Monday. I mean, Happy Monday.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Friday Afternoon Funny

My kid doing all The Cute Things on video. Okay, cute to me, anyway.



For real, now---Happy Weekend ;)

{play}

The last few weeks, admittedly, there's been less time for just fun play time with Emeline. I think I can blame a lot of things, and not just the addition of a new person in the house. But that is partially true.

My exhaustion, my I am just surviving right now attitude, and the amount of time I've had the TV and iPad on. It's definitely been more than normal, or---more than life pre-Lucy. I thank God everyday for the use of those distractions. I'm not going to go and diss on them because Em has some awesome educational iPad apps that we both love, and same with some of the cute shows and movies she watches.

BUT. 

There's something to be said about managing that time wisely. I wanted and needed to be better. It's been a few weeks, now. My kid is smart, funny and bright---but I've noticed she's lacked major interest in her toys over the last few months and they were getting a little stagnant. 

So the other night, Declan, Emeline and I went through her toybox, organized toys, separated her flashcards (which had become a huge pile of MESS), found all the lost puzzle pieces, put away the 1 year old toys (for now), and noticed where we had gaps of things and made a mental list for things we think she'd really like for later. 

The good news is, I think seeing her stuff all laid out got her re-interested again. So we're making greater efforts to play more throughout the day. And I think it's sweet when she says, "'mon (c'mon) Mommy, let's play!" She's always been awesome at independent play, and that definitely comes in handy--but, there is something to be said for getting on the floor with your kids.

I'm working on getting better at this part. Especially with this new juggling act of an additional kid to take care of. 

I know it's important to make Emeline still feel special by doing big girl things that only she can do. Her flashcards and puzzles are some of those things. Spending some time with her doing those simple things yesterday just made me wanna squeeze her guts, because she's so stinking silly, and very thoughtful, and very strategic, adorable---and, well, I'm just proud of this kid. 




after I took this photo, I promptly changed that full diaper.

In case you were wondering, it was No Pants Thursday around here, yesterday. And yes she's still in diapers, pleeeease, I've got plenty going on right now and potty training isn't one of those things, yet.  :)

***

Have a wonderful, fun-filled weekend, friends.

(name puzzle is from http://www.catalogfavorites.com/, a gift from Declan's parents to Eme at Christmas!)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Things I forgot about having a newborn.

...they are really, really mushy and squishy. Like the most adorable little blobs, who you can hold up like you would a little kitten that's all floppy and mushy gushy blob-like. It's so dang cute.

...they have really, really, really tiny little bums. Or, that could just be that my perspective on butts is different since having a big 'ole 2 year old butt to change, too. But still! TINY BOOTY ALERT!


...changing diapers on a newborn is way harder than I remember. Their legs! They just curl up, or their little feet end up IN the diaper, or if you have a girl you know about The Sneaky Pee (and I know boy-moms have a whole different battle, ie: getting shot in the face), and oh the drama that comes with changing diapers. Maybe my baby just hates it, but good Lord, it's an epic meltdown.

...changing their clothes takes time, and patience--because, again, with the squishiness. It's not the ease, and "arms up!", quick pull-over-their-head type thing I can do with my toddler. They're so little. And you have to do bend and move every body part to finagle it into clothing. See also: Lucy hates to get dressed, too. Another epic meltdown. Fun for all.

...giving them a bath takes about 2.5 seconds because they are SO! SMALL! and you can, literally, clean every body part, including their hair, that fast. This part helps make up for how tedious putting on a dang onesie can be.


...they are the best cuddling buddies, ever. There is nothing greater than a newborn snuggling up by your neck, laying on your chest, in your arms, or by your side. Seriously, nothing. The best.

...they want to sleep, all the time, but normally at the wrong times. In the middle of nursing? FALL ASLEEP why don't ya? Impossible to wake up? Check, check, check. 5am? Sounds like a perfect time to wake up wide-eyed, right, Mom? right? :) (insert tired groan)

...Umm....they poop all the time. I swear my entire day consists of feeding, swaddling, crap! she pooped!, unswaddling, changing diaper, re-swaddling, NOT AGAIN!?, change, etc...etc...you get it.

...pretty much, without fail, they will either want/need to eat when it's time for YOU to eat, or want/need to be held/rocked/loved on during that time. Which basically means dinnertime consists of newborn cuddling while trying to finagle some food in your mouth at the same time. Finding crumbs on your kid's head? Totally okay.

...their feet, oh their cute, soft little tootsies.


...they have the freaking cutest sneezes known to man. Seriously, I don't think there's anything cuter. Okay, baby stretches and yawns are also ranked up there.

...on the other side of the fence, when they get to the blood-curdling-pissed-off-scream? (I mean, PAST the point of the normal newborn cry)--it's not as cute. No, not at all. (Also: I think I very rarely heard this with Eme because I could be at her side for every squeak and wiggle. This time, having two kids to take care of means someone has to wait sometimes. Luckily it's not often, but oh, that scream. My girls have pipes.)

...you should really keep a burp cloth handy, within arms reach, at all times. I still have yet to learn this lesson with Lucy---and so far spit-up has landed in my hair (and found hours later), on my robe (poor, pink robe--but still wearing it, fyi), and down my cleavage. And also? She's not even a baby who spits up much. So, yea.

....coffee. You will need it. Having your husband make extra coffee every day is not a bad thing---it's a survival technique. Go with it.


Most of all?

Heart. booming. love. All over again. I love her little squishy self to the moon and back. If anything, I feel like a better, more experienced momma, doing all that I can to provide for both my girls needs, while ping-ponging back and forth between toddlerville and newborn-world.

I love the newborn stage, I do. So stinkin' much, actually that I find myself already worried about how fast it's going. But, man--there was so much I kind of forgot.

These tiny people are so sweet. I just love it.


***

Happy Thursday!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Emeline--what she's up to.

Life is chugging along and my big girl is growing up every day. She makes me laugh, and sometimes she makes me cry (ha), but overall, life with her is a blast. These posts documenting stuff she does are for me (and her one day).

***

We still have a music obsessed child. I don't see that going anywhere soon. If we don't turn on the music right away she goes, "I neeeeed mooosic, mommyyyy". The other day we were listening to Pandora in the car for a good 30 minutes of driving...and in that span we heard a ton of songs. Declan and I kept noticing that she knew the words to at least 90% of them. Her music taste is as broad as her parents. I probably shouldn't be proud of the fact that my 2 year old sings Adele, Taio Cruz, Justin Bieber, One Republic, and Gym Class Heroes (to name a few...), but I kind of am. So sue me.

She usually proclaims, "Oh! This is my favorite song!" to pretty much most of the songs. Call Me Maybe still ranks up there as #1 these days.


(usually I don't have to prompt her at all but figures when the camera is out....sigh)

And yes, I will so be the mother who takes her to concerts when she's a tween. Actually, knowing my husband he'll want to join us. Family fun for all.

*

Emeline will not stop talking about our trip to Disney World. She remembers so many little details about it, her memory astounds me.

Multiple times a day she'll say, "I need to go back to Disney World, k?" and then she follows it up with, "I ask PopPop to go back, k?"

She basically adds, "k?" or "ok?" to the end of EVERYTHING she says. I realized this is a habit she picked up from me, since I end a lot of my sentences to her this way so she responds with yes or no. Now she overkills it, and while cute, it's borderline annoying :)

*

I have a repeater reporter on my hands. Which means I need to watch my mouth. I'm good about not using "adult" words in front of her--but little things? Eh. For instance, she says "oh gosh!" with a huge sigh multiple times a day. She always says, "oh my goodness!" (which is way cuter)--and then there's one more I'm not proud of, at all. I refuse to write it here, but--she now gets a time out if she says it. Yea, mom fail. I'm working on it, people.

*


Girlfriend has taken to this big sister role flawlessly. I'm so proud of her. Every single morning she asks for "baby sister Lucy" and then when she finally sees her she proclaims, "oh I missed you baby sister! Oh, she's so cute! Awwww", it's so funny.

She loves to hug and kiss her. She's not as much into holding her these days but I'm okay with that.

When Eme is still eye level with my stomach (like, when getting changed, etc), she'll still sometimes hug around my mid section and go, "aww I love you Lucy girl!", then she pulls away and laughs, saying, "oh! Lucy downstairs!" I think so many months of hugging a bump became second nature to her.

The good news is that my stomach is pretty much non existent, I don't look pregnant anymore thankfully, which has made this way less confusing for Em, I think.

*


One of my favorite things about this age for Emeline is that at dinnertime, Declan will ask her about her day and she'll recall little things. And SOMETIMES she'll throw in a little fib here and there, which kind of makes me chuckle. I don't think she actually thinks she's lying or anything, but it's still kind of funny.

Lately it's been like this, "Emeline, what'd you do today with mommy?"

Em: "Oh! I watched a dora moomie....(movie), had snacks..........my big girl bed...(nap)......" and then she'll be all, "....and I went to the park...." (and I'm all HA HA No you didn't because momma didn't get out of PJ's today, sweetie!)

It's cute.

*

There is so much more. Plus, moms can talk about their kids for days. But mostly, I'm just really thankful for this little girl--for the blessing she is and the wonderful big sister she's already proving to be.

So much love for her. So much.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Real life?

Real life is settling in a bit.

I did it.

One whole week at home with two little girls who I'm responsible for. Today starts week 2. We have made it out the door for some outings. Little things. More so when Declan is home than anything else (hey, I need extra hands--I don't know how people do this alone yet).

The feelings of guilt that I blogged about regarding Emeline are starting to subside. Every day when I see the girls together it gets better, because I know what a gift Lucy is for Em, and vice versa. I'm so grateful that she is such a sweet big sister--that makes it so much easier. I also think my post-baby-hormones are settling down a bit and so there hasn't been much unnecessary tears from me. Aka: I'm not a blubbering mess anymore.

My outings last week alone with the kids were minimal. I think I probably only went out twice, once where I kept them strapped in the car (went to a drive-thru for lunch, fancy pants). The other, a "safe outing" to my parents house where I knew no one could get hit by a car or lost, and I could nurse simply whenever the little miss demanded needed. It worked, and it was fun for Emeline to get out--she loooves going over there.

We're doing what we can to keep life flowing as normal as possible for Eme. This week, we went to the park after dinner as a family. Daddy played hardcore with her, while I walked the baby around in a stroller and ooh'ed and ahh'ed at all the big girl stuff she could do. "Look MOMMY!!!" as she climbed things that I swear she shouldn't be able to climb and I got lumps in my throat.

Heck, we even managed to have dinner out as a family, at a restaurant (chili's), where we had a remotely peaceful meal. It was even topped off with a trip to Dairy Queen. See? We're doing it. We're doing this Parents of Two thing. Trying, anyway.

Declan and I are trying to be intentional about each getting some alone time, too. Time without kids, without each other, even--to do what we want for a few hours here and there, alone or with friends. Honestly? It's much needed for me when all week I've been in yoga pants, messy hair, adorned in spit-up, and talking about Dora the Explorer. An hour, even, of sanity-at my happy place (Target), makes all the difference.

So Friday night? For two+ hours, I walked around Target alone. Trying to find a few pieces of appropriate clothes that don't cling to my milk makers (I hate that part, seriously. I prefer my skinny barely-exist boobs). While that part wasn't fun, it was nice to just be at peace in my head, leave Declan with the babies (one was in bed), and feel semi-normal. I was feeling great until the lady at the checkout counter told me how tired I look, and I even put on makeup for the trip. I guess no amount of makeup can hide this kind of tired.

I fail.

The next day I even got out to a friends baby shower--but this time I took the littlest lady in my life with me. It was nice to get dressed up and feel kind of pretty. After I lose 20lbs I'll probably feel better, but I'm taking that part a day at a time (and it deserves a whole 'nother post--in a few weeks).

Don't worry, Declan got his turn to go out, too. He finally went and saw Dark Knight, which he's been dying to see. Of course, before he left he made sure to have Emeline bathed and in bed for me (isn't he sweet?)--but of course, since Daddy was away and mommy was alone, it resulted in a Failed Bedtime. Isn't that always the case? So I got some late night snuggles with both (!!!) my girls. Still crazy typing that. Girls. I have two girls.

We even took both girls to Church for the first time on Sunday morning.

Last night Declan and I decided to wait to make a nice dinner until after Emeline was in bed. It was just one of those nights, we needed the sanity, and the togetherness---and a peaceful dinner. So we fed her something else for dinner, got her ready for bed, and THEN we made an awesome steak dinner. Even Lucy (who has preferred to be worn like 99.9% of the time) slept in the swing during our meal. We had a little at-home-date and it was nice.

We took a few minutes to be like, Whoa, we have two kids. How are we doing with it all? We're good like that, we try to keep in check with our feelings and life transitions--and how can we do better-type thing. But really, all in all--we decided that it's going well. This two kids thing. A slow start? Yes. But a good one.

Me & my fluffy pink robe and yoga pants wouldn't have it any other way.

***

This weeks little goal will be to use my real camera to capture some moments. I mean, thanks Instagram for catching these moments---but I must be better with my good camera.

Bring it on.

Friday, August 10, 2012

More things.

I poured my heart out yesterday on my post and received nothing but encouraging, kind words, and oh I've been there, and oh I'm there with you now, too---and it made me feel normal. And somehow I think I made other moms feel normal, too. Thank you, so much, for being pretty much the most encouraging group of people, ever.

I am not sure where I'm headed with this. So bear with me.

Both girls woke up this morning at the exact same time. 8am, actually--so I feel like I can't complain about that. It's much better than 7am, and a hella lot better than 6am or some god forsaken hour (which rarely happens around here). And I've been a little worried about what I'd do if that happened--but really? No big deal at all. We made it work, and thank you Jesus for the moby wrap.

Speaking of the Moby--I heard so many mixed reviews on this wrap but I really, really like it so far. Yes, the long piece of fabric seems to GO FOR MILES. It's not convenient to just shove in your diaper bag or something (in my opinion), but it can be done. And once you know how to wrap it once, you're golden. It's easy as pie. I'm currently typing this post as a little sniffly newborn is strapped to my chest. Both hands are free. I can sip my coffee. I can type.  I consider this a huge win.

Also, I feel like it's a good wrap when you really don't want people to touch your baby. I guess all wraps are kind of like that. But, you know what I mean.

**

You know how people write posts (I did too, last time) about their favorite baby items? On the 2nd kid, they talk about how their favorite things have changed and all?

Yea. I don't really know if I'd have much to say on that this time. My two favorite things for this baby are the moby wrap as I said, and gowns. I forgot how annoying snaps are and honestly, in the middle of the night I'm way too tired to be snapping some puzzle together. It usually ends up a mess and is more irritating than it's worth at 3am. I've probably made my husband go out and buy about 6 more newborn gowns for Lucy so far. Me=Lazy in the middle of the night. Sue me.

So if you're about to have kid #2--my suggestion is: get a wrap that you can be hands free while you tend to your toddler (or write your blog posts), and stock up on gowns. You will be way too tired to unsnap anything in the middle of the night, trust me.

There's that.

**

I could, and maybe should write a post about how breastfeeding is going this time around. I wrote about the subject a few times with Emeline. I'm no die-hard, but I know it's best for my kids and my body seems to jive with it, so I go with it. I feel way blessed that I can, even though it's a total and complete body sacrifice in my opinion. For now all I'll say is, it's a million times easier this go around. I never had one issue in the hospital where I couldn't get her to latch properly. She's eating well and gaining weight like a champ. And honestly? It hurts so much less this time, too.

In fact, at the hospital, the lactation consultant walked in while I was nursing the baby in a pro hold, hands free (using the boppy), perfectly latched kid, with my laptop up on my knees while I was editing photos---and she just smiled and said, "Oh 2nd time moms. Doesn't look like you need me, dear!" We both just laughed and I told her that if I ended up needing her I'd call for her. It really has been a cinch though. So grateful.


(all photos in this post are courtesy of my sister-in-law, Lyryn--thank you, Lyr!)
Speaking of photos, I did Lucy's newborn pictures myself (and you saw some of them). I mean, that's part of the fun having your own little baby model to play with, right?

But I really wanted some lifestyle-type photographs of the family. Ones I could actually be in. So I'm grateful that my sister-in-law, Lyryn came when Lucy was 1 week old and did that for us in our home. Here are a few of my favorites.





***

And that's all I got.

Have a happy weekend, my friends.

xo