1.31.2011

home again, home again

Home again, watching my baby nap... not due to snow this time, but due to fever. Poor thing. She's already feeling a little better, but last night was rough. Even her hands were hot! Now we're just taking it easy, relaxing and working on getting rid of this fever. Trav already took off for tomorrow, so she can have another day at home. Hopefully she'll be back to her fun, playful self by then.

For today though, there is lots of lazing about and cuddling going on. And right now, my baby sleeps.

1.28.2011

One week until my baby brother turns 21.
Two weeks and a day until Gwen's 1st birthday party... 2 weeks and 5 days until she actually turns 1.


It all goes so fast!

1.27.2011

snow day

Thought I would take advantage of this:
(Little aside... my baby, napping, NOT on me! Yay!)

which I get to be home to see, thanks to this:


to come here and say Hi.
Hi!

Its been snowy lately. I took this picture, oh, a week ago or so?

And yesterday morning looked like this:

Gross, heavy, blowing snow. But we still all headed out to work/daycare.
But that wasn't even the big storm, which came last night around dinner time, and didn't stop until early this morning. It left about a foot behind: 


Gwen and I headed outside this morning to check it out:

She seemed... well, not too sure what all the big fuss was about!

Afterward we came inside to play. Gwen and Daisy did some snuggling:

Gwen loves to give Daisy hugs, and goes "Awwww":

Its really sweet.

Now we're about to get on with the rest of our afternoon. I'm sure we'll be back to work and school tomorrow... but its nice having the reprise.  :-) 

This weekend we have fun things in store. An engagement party on Saturday evening, and my mom is coming down to babysit... so we'll probably do a bigger breakfast on Sunday. Saturday is also Willy's birthday, so we might stop by to see him in the morning.

For now though, I'm off to get some lunch with my waking babe. Enjoy your Thursday!

1.24.2011

walking and giggles

So! Its Monday (boo), but I had really nice weekend (yay). Got my hair trimmed on Saturday, so Gwen and I got to see my parents and Gram. Always fun. Sunday we were lazy lazy and just relaxed around the house for the most part.

We did work on our walking some:

video

Apparently her and dada practice most mornings.  :-)  Too cute.


Gwen is still working on teeth, which is no fun, but she's been sleeping better lately thanks to some teething tablets and some tyl.enol.

Also, I finally have some pictures to share of my birthday banner creativity... no finished product yet, but here's some of the stages.

Letter templates cut out:


I traced those (backwards) onto the back of self adhering felt, then cut that out:


My felt letters got attached to pretty paper that I had cut out and mounted on card stock:


A closer view of one of the papers:


I've punched holes in all the cards, and by the end of the week I should have it all attached to the ribbon. I'm pretty pleased with it so far, though obviously I'm dying to see the finished product. Finished pictures to come.



Also, one final thing to share before I get back to work. I've been seeing lots of miscarriage/babyloss on the internet lately. It got me thinking about my own. Two years ago I was pregnant and blissfully naive about how that pregnancy would turn out. Its not that I didn't know a miscarriage was possible, I just didn't think it would happen to me. I thought I would share this article that someone shared with me (Hi Lydia, sorry for the delay!) about dealing with miscarriage. Hopefully you never need to read it, but now its out there in case you or anyone you know does need it.
 

1.20.2011

Its super quiet today as everyone is in DC for a conference. There are literally 4 of us here. So Eli (who has the office attached to mine) and I are listening to the soundtrack to the Rocky Horror Picture Show. And singing along. Because how can you not?!  :-)

I'm a bit tired... Gwen is getting 4 teeth in and she is miserable at night, and fussier during the day then normal. Two nights ago we ran out of teething tabs. That was a bad night. No fun. She ended up in bed with us at 11:30!! Though I did sleep pretty well with her there.

I've been keeping busy at work, and keeping busy at home too. Right now I'm working on a birthday banner for Gwen (pictures to come). After that, I'll start working on some more creative stuff for a "craft it forward" thing I'm doing. I have four people to make crafty things for... though I still have to make the final decision on what exactly those crafty things will be. Two people have dogs, so I might make them some of our dog biscuits. I was looking at a neat jewelry craft make with shrink plastic, and a hanging chalkboard thing. We'll see, but I'll show you whatever I end up making!!

Otherwise life continues on as normal. I really enjoyed my three day weekend this past week, including my Monday with just Gwen and I. The shorter week is nice too. Only a little over a week left in January, I can't believe it.

1.17.2011

babybook style roundup

At 11 months Gwen is:
  • just into size 3 diapers
  • still wearing 6 - 9 month clothes
  • has two teeth with FOUR more on their way out (visible just below the surface)
  • says - Hi, Daisy, Mama, Dada, No, Yes, That (dat!)
  • uses some words in combination - Hi Daisy, Hi Dada
  • understands the signs for "more" and "all done", and uses sporadically 
  • understands and responds to simple requests (Gwen, can I have the sock?)
  • can climb up and down the stairs
  • knows to turn around and slide feet first off the couch/chairs
  • dances to music
  • claps along when you sing to her, or when something is exciting (yay!)
  • gives hugs and says "awww" 
  • gives kisses 
  • stands up without assistance (human or furniture)
  • walks with a little assistance (along furniture, with a hand, with a push toy)
  • takes a few steps unassisted 
  • is familiar with her routine and gets excited for things that are about to happen
    (ex. on weekend mornings Trav lets me sleep in... when Gwen wakes and is fed, Trav goes to the bathroom and puts on warm clothes, then comes back for Gwen. as soon as he gets up to get dressed, she starts bouncing up and down with a smile on her face, babbling about dada!)
  • holds a sippy cup and drinks from it on her own
  • is working on using a spoon on her own (she can... its just messy!!)
Just a few things Gwen is doing at this age that I want to remember! Probably exciting to no one but me, but at least I have it down for the record.  :-) 

1.16.2011

11 months


Dear Gwenie,
I can't believe that my baby is only a month away from her first birthday?! How... when... I just... its not possible! But, its the truth, whether I'm ready to accept it or not. So quickly the time goes. Especially when we are busy, and boy has this past month been busy. There was Christmas and New Years, such wonderful holidays to share with you. There was your daddy's broken hand, which made everything a little more hectic too. But things are slowing back down now, and I'm hoping this next month... your last one as an infant, will go a little slower!

You are getting to be such a big girl, Gwenie. You are so close to walking... you take steps here and there, between objects, and are always cruising along the furniture. Its not long now before you're going to be running circles around me. You also have two teeth now, and the two on the bottom are poised to pop through anytime (I can see the white just below the surface). These two teeth have given us some issues at night, so I'm ready for them to just come out already, as I'm sure you are too!

Oh sleep. Our continued rollercoaster ride! You've been sleeping not so well for a while now. But out of the blue you gave us a great night... slept straight through until 4:30, then in bed with us until 6. That was wonderful, and as your Mama is ever hopeful, I'm crossing my fingers that it means lots of better sleep is on the horizon!

Something that you're great at and we never have to worry about... eating! Girl, you love food, and you love healthy food which is so good. You always give new things a try, and even if you don't love them right away, you normally come around to them after a few tastes. We're also still breastfeeding, and you still love that too. You might be my teeny peanut, but I know you're getting enough good stuff between your three meals a day (plus snacks sometimes too), and 5+ nursing sessions/bottles.

You are my fun, happy girl and I love the sense of humor that's really starting to show. You have such a great giggle, and the sweetest smile.

We started a new weekend tradition this month. Showers with Mama! Lol. Its actually a lot of fun... and a bit easier to fit into our busy weekends then baths are. You love grabbing at the falling water and when I tickle your toes with the spray. I love ease of cleaning and another excuse to snuggle you close. Its win-win.

Gwenivere, the whens, wheres, and whos have been figured out for your first birthday party, and we're just working on making up the details. These past 11 months have been some of the most amazing, trying, fun, exhausting, and love-filled months of my life. I'm not ready to be done with the first year, but I know that each year is going to be full of new experiences, new milestones, and lots of love and giggles. I can't wait to go through it all with you.

Love you more each day,
Mama

1.12.2011

political... or not...

Part of me wants to get all political and talk about this...


but most of me doesn't even want to go there. Suffice it to say, I'm so sick of it all... not just Sarah Palin (though I am DEFINITELY sick of her), but of any politico who uses hate mongering to push their agenda. Do I think that Palin intended AZ to happen, no. Do I think that people need to learn that their f*cking words and what they put out there have consequences?! YES!

Good post here.

Bah.

1.10.2011

weekend

First off, thank you *all* for your comments on my sleep post. I really appreciate every single one of them. The currently-there-commiserating is great, the advice is great, and its definitely great to read the ones from people with older kids who've been there, done that. Even the tough love is great because I know its coming from a place of caring.

Sleep this weekend wasn't great, but I think at least part of that was because of more teething (for real, not an excuse, I swear!! Lol)... I am pretty sure I can feel the edge of one of the bottom two middle teeth. I guess we'll see if anything pops out in the next week or so.

As for the rest of the weekend, it was nice. Saturday we were supposed to head to Willy's, but the snow started early, so we decided to stay home. We had some yogurt for lunch and Gwen practiced with the spoon. This was really her first time using it herself, and she loved it. I filled up the spoon for her the first time, and handed it to her...  


She loved sucking the yogurt off the end, and then I would help her scoop up more.


Fun!


Later, we took advantage of a break in the snow to go for a walk. It was cold, but refreshing. We got all bundled up, and by the end, Gwen snuggled into my chest and went to sleep. (Please excuse the fact that I look weirdly Cas.per like...)


My sweet thing. She actually stayed asleep while I unwrapped us, half-woke briefly when I took her coat off, but then ended up taking a 2.5 hour nap!! Nothing like a little fresh air to help you sleep well!

Sunday we headed to Willy's for a bit, with a pit stop at the mall to use some gift cards. It was a nice day. It was a nice weekend too. I'm enjoying this calm that comes when the holidays are over and the new year is stretching before you. It feels like everyone takes a breather this first week or two.

Now its back to work and back to busyness... though not too bad this week, I think things have slowed down a little and I've gotten a hold on my new level of work. Not that I don't dream everyday of Jan's return!!  ;-)

And with that, I'm off!

1.09.2011

just for giggles


When I need a giggle... I head over to damn you autocorrect. 


It NEVER fails to crack me up. 


The other day, I was trying not to laugh loudly at work... trying so hard that I ended up in tears! Love that site.

1.06.2011

hello, i'm meegs, and i'm the mother to a crappy sleeper

Okay, I'm just going to lay it all out there. For the longest time I purposely avoided talking about Gwen's sleep problems. Why is it that every other part of my life and parenting, I'll discuss unabashedly, giving my reasons for why we do what we do, and asking advice. But with sleep... I feel like I have to hide what isn't going well, and when I do talk about it I feel like I have to give excuses.

But today I am not going to give excuses... today I am just going to say it how it is.

My name is Meegs, and I am the mother of a crappy sleeper.

Honestly, at the beginning, despite some rough nights... she slept pretty dang well. Then there were a few month of wonderful sleep! But for the past few months it hasn't been great. A lot of the time, it hasn't even been good (case in point, NYE night and the nights that followed with hourly wakings!). And I feel loath to share that because I'm afraid of being judged, I guess. Its one of the few things for me that, when discussed, always comes packaged with an excuse. IRL as here.

Cold, teething, growth spurt, too hot, fussy from shots, etc. I'm sure every one of those have been true at least a few times. But even then, that leaves a lot of nights uncovered. Its time that I just admit it to myself and others, my daughter just doesn't want to sleep through the night right now.

While I'm getting sleep things off my chest, I'll let you know that I still nurse her to sleep almost every night. That I nurse her most times that she wakes. And that she's still coming into bed with us at 5ish in the a.m. to sleep with us until our wake up at 6 (sometimes she'll keep sleeping until 6:15 - 6:20).

The thing is, I don't mind any of those things. I love the extra snuggles and I know this won't last forever. And that's what I keep telling myself about all of this crappy sleep stuff... while its hard being tired sometimes, there will be a time that I look back and miss getting to hold my babe in my arms, rocking her, feeding her. While I won't miss it at 2am, I will miss it in general. And this won't last forever... I don't know one teenager who doesn't know how to sleep.  ;-)

Come 14 -18 months, if she's still not sleeping well... then I'll probably night wean. But while I will ask for advice, and I will complain and ask for commiseration, I think I'm actually okay with my little crappy sleeper. And I'm not going to hide it anymore!



So come clean... anyone else have/had a troubled sleeper? How did/do you cope? Advice?
Alternately, anyone have something else that they are extra sensitive about?




*Updated to add: Until a year, breastmilk (or formula) is still the primary source of nutrition. I know she doesn't NEED to eat at night, but if she feels she needs to, I'm going to oblige her for the time being.

When I do decide to night wean, there are a ton of methods, and I still don't plan on using CIO. Its just not for us.

This post was more about letting go of my own feelings of needing to "explain away" her sleep then about actually thinking that I'm doing anything wrong. That's the whole point, I don't think I am doing anything wrong and I'm putting this out there so I can stop feeling like I have to justify the way she sleeps. Many children don't sleep through the night, weaned or not, until they are two years or older. And I know many people who've done CIO, only to have to re-do it after sickness, travel, teething, etc. Why put us both through that?

1.05.2011

starting on the goals *updated*

I had trouble getting back into the swing of things on Monday and Tuesday. I think part of me was still on holiday.  ;-)  But today I've made up for it with a burst of super productivity!! I good thing since I didn't win the Me.gaMil.lions jackpot last night. (Damn.)

I'm sure it helped that Jan was in today and took on a few small tasks to help me work through my pile. It was a great motivator to get tons done.


In completely unrelated news, I'm hoping that I can use THIS to start on my goal of decluttering and organizing my closet. Maybe this weekend or next. Talk about a well-timed post.


Sorry for such a short, content-less post, but I have to run back to work... must take advantage of this productiveness! But just wanted to pop in to say Hi.  :-)


*Updated to add:  Just found out this morning that my godbaby is a GodDaughter!!  :-)  I'm so excited. 

1.03.2011

aims... goals...

Its the new year, and I have no resolutions. I didn't have one last year either... how could I when instead I was frantically crossing things off an all too real list of things to get done before baby's eminent arrival!! ;-)  But I do have some very general goals for the year, and I'm going to share them with you:

  1. Pare down clothes and "stuff". We have way too much junk, and I hate the house feeling so cluttered. So... continue to declutter. Give things to the Purple Heart, or toss/recycle whatever is too beat up for others to use. Get it to the point that we aren't bursting at the seams!

  2. In the same vein, get more organized with what we do have! There are a few things that I know I have, but don't know where they are. Frustrating to no end.

  3. Have more sex. Seriously, Trav is a saint sometimes. Between staggered bedtimes and lack of sleep and waking baby, sex has fallen way down on our lists of things we do. It needs to be bumped up.

  4. Eat more greens, and more variety. Gwen eats better then I do... which is great, but also not so much since I need to be a good example to her. And I need it to be the best, healthiest me I can be.

  5. Similarly, make more homemade yummy foods... like this:
    Balsamic chicken with onion and garlic, over egg noodles, with broccoli. So dang good, and pretty darn easy and quick too. I tied Gwen on my back and we made it together in a half hour. Probably would have been quicker if I hadn't sliced my finger in the process of cutting the onion (our new knives are sharp!!!!!!). 

So there you have it. My general aims and goals... not just because its the new year, but because these are what I need anyway.

What are you going to work on in 2011?

    1.01.2011

    starting off right

    Can you believe it's 2011?! Honestly, I can't. The years fly by, faster and faster each time. This time last year I was amazed by the fact that I was going to have a baby the following month... now I can say that my baby turns one next month! I can't even wrap my head around it!

    That said, we've had a full New Years break. Thursday I had off, though Trav had to work. So Gwen went into daycare so that I could give our house the start of a much needed big clean, and take care of some other chores and errands. I did take advantage and sleep in a bit in the morning, which was lovely and so needed. I sleep so much better and sounder on those days when Trav and Gwen are off to their respective daytime places. When we're all home, I find myself sleeping lighter because I'm always in a state of waiting for her to wake. I sleep much better when Trav gets up with her on weekend mornings... I know she's taken care of and I don't have to be the one to jump when she cries. But still, I'm sort of listening a little, for if she's really giving him a hard time and he's getting frustrated. So those days when I know that he's at work and she's playing at daycare... well then I can really shut it all out, turn of my ears, turn off my brain and just sleep! Its wonderful.

    Post sleep, I had a busy and productive day. First, the hardest but also most important and lovely part of the day, I visited the wife of the president of our company. Shiva really is such an amazing tradition, a beautiful way to remember and honor the lost, to share your grief. It was actually my second trip out to their place, and I'm glad I went.

    After that it was all about prepping the house for New Years. Ro & Pat (and GG), and Babs were all coming over... so I wanted the house to be ready. The bathroom was scoured, there was a trip to the grocery store, the whole house was picked up and straightened, the laundry all put away.

    I also hit up the Home Depot to use part of our gift card on this:

    We finally got a new programmable thermostat! Its so nice... 7 day programmable, so we can have different settings for the weekend and weekdays. Plus we can have four different temp settings for during the day. We have our warmest times in the morning and evening, so we're all comfortable when we're home and awake; slightly cooler for at night, so we can sleep well (not too hot), but so that it doesn't get too cold for Gwenie; then the coolest setting for during the day, when we're all out. Its Energy Star and it is so much nicer then our old one, which only had one hot and one cold setting, and didn't differentiate between days. Hell, by the end, it didn't even keep the time correctly.
    Yay for being greener!! 

    In any case, it was a busy, productive day.

    Friday we finished cleaning in the morning... Trav vacuumed and dusted. I finished picking up and hung up all our holiday cards. We also put away another piece of baby gear that Gwen has outgrown. It was pretty warm out so we went for a walk (all four of us), and enjoyed some fresh air before coming back to start cooking. People arrived after a gave Gwen dinner and put her down, and we spent the rest of  the night hanging out, eating way too much, and drinking fake bubbly.




    We flipped the TV to watch the ball drop just before midnight... then smooched and clinked glasses.



    (2011 is scary!)

    After that Ro & Pat took off pretty quickly, and after some quick putting away of food, Babs and I were ready for bed. Trav was crazy and stayed up for a bit to watch hockey. Unfortunately a good nights sleep (or what was left of the night) was not in the cards for me. Gwen had been waking almost hourly since I put her down, don't know if it was because there was stuff going on downstairs (though I think we kept it down well), or if she's having teething pains or going through a growth spurt (she wanted to eat every time she woke, and still ate like a horse today)... but it continued even after everyone left. Finally, we I was up with her at 2, and finally got her to sleep, only to have her wake again a half hour later, I gave up and ended up sleeping with her on the futon in her room. Its not my favorite thing to do... I wake up sort, I don't sleep well... but its better then being up every hour or less! I slept with her there until 5:30, when I tried (and failed) to put her down in her crib, so I brought her into our bed, where I could at least be a little more comfortable.

    Girl was still awake and ready for the day at 6:30! Trav was an angel though and got up with her, so I could sleep a bit (when I did until 9:30), then we switch. At 11:00 I went to peak at him and he was just waking up, so I roused Babs too.




    A little bit of lounging and waking, then it was off to that International pancake place.




    Gwenie enjoyed her pancake... and I enjoyed eating her bacon.  ;-)
    We forgot a sippy cup, but we improved, much to Gwen's amusement...



    Its a little hard to tell, but we dribbled water from a straw for her... she loved it!

    After that it was a lot of relaxing. Babs hung out until after dinner, then was off to her parents. She's back to California on Monday, and I don't know when we'll get to see her again. It was amazing getting to see her in October, November, December, and January... but now it will probably be until next Christmas at least.  :-(  Its hard having your longest, best friend be across the country.

    All in all though, an amazing way to ring in the new year. As for now, I'm going to sign off for the moment so that I can get ready for bed and hit the hay early. I'm praying for a better night sleep tonight. Wish us luck!!!

    More in the coming week, but here's hoping that your 2011 has gotten off to a great start.