Wednesday, August 25, 2010

ABC's that got me through the first year

Some friends have asked for advice on registries, toys, etc. recently and as I started making my recommendations, I noticed they were almost in alphabetical order (the organizer is embedded in my subconscious!). So, these are my favorite things that have gotten us through the first year! If there is something that YOU loved and I've missed it, please leave a comment for me and the other readers!

A Aden & Anais swaddle blankets and swaddle sacks, Amber necklace for teething

B Boppy, Bumbo, Baby 411 (a great quick reference book), Baby Bjorn (our favorite carrier from 3mo-6mo), Bibs

C California Baby products (all of them - all natural), Chicco KeyFit car seat & stroller, Cloth diapers as burp cloths - the cheap kind because the nice ones don't absorb anything, Changing pad

D Diaper Dude (dad's diaper bag), Diaper Genie, and Diapers!

E Ergo baby carrier (my new favorite carrier! 6mo to about 2 years), Exersaucer, Electric toothbrush (sounds weird, right? the only sound that would make Sophie stop crying some times)

F Flip Video handheld video camera, Freddy the Firefly and any other Lamaze brand toys, First aid kit

G Graco Pack N Play, Grooming kit

H Hometics sound machine, Hooded towels, Happiest Baby on the Block (DVD is better than the book), Hand-me-downs - accept all of them!

I Infantino Vintage Twist and Fold Activity Center

J Jogging stroller (we love the Baby Jogger Summit), Join an online mommy network (The Mommy Network, for example)

K Kindermusik or another regular class - getting mommy and baby out of the house for socialization is a great thing!

L Lansinoh cream, Lactation consultant

M Medela pump, Mylicon, Moby Wrap (my favorite carrier from 0-3mo)

N Night out (as in, take one every once in a while), Nursing tanks, Nipple shields

O Outlet covers, Onesies (all kinds - long sleeve, short sleeve, built in mittens)

P Pacifiers (all kinds - then when the babe picks a favorite, go buy six of them)

Q Q-tips, the safety kind

R Rocking chair (or glider or a Lazy Boy), Robeez shoes

S Sophie the Giraffe (our fave teether), Snappies bottles, Sleep Sheep, Swaddle sacks with velcro

T Think Baby Bottles, Tub

U Understand no two days are the same :)

V Video Monitor (Summer is my favorite), Vicks baby vapor rub

W Weissbluth: Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, Wipe Warmer, Walker (good for chasing four-legged siblings)

X XOXOXOXOXO hugs and kisses - give 'em and get 'em

Y Yogurt melts, Yellow anything because pink and blue get boring

Z Zipper pajamas in all sizes, Zzzz's... sleep is good for mommy and baby!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Just numbers...

A little ditty on numbers for your reading pleasure today.

  • Every single day I see the clock at 11:14 (which is my birthday).
  • 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 30. There, I said it. I'm turning 30 this year.
  • I took my 1000th camera phone pic on the BB this past weekend.
  • Stink turned 8 months today.
  • My number 1 favorite artist released a new cd today. Go out and get it: Ray LaMontagne, God Willin' & the Creek Don't Rise.

Big birthday plans this year! Planning is something I really enjoy and, boy, have I been planning for this one.

And maybe this is a surprise; maybe it's not: I'm not talking about a big blow-out expensive themed party. Nothing of the sort. I've been thinking a lot about the turn of three great decades, and ways I can challenge myself and/or give back to show appreciation and thanks for all that has been given to me over the past 29 years. In trying to identify some challenging tasks for myself to complete in my 30th year as a currently stay-at-home-mom, here were some of the ideas (that were tabled):

Give 30 pints of blood - well you can't do that in a year, because you wouldn't be, um, alive.

Have 30 kids - just call me Mrs. Duggar.

Run 30 races - I decided even I don't enjoy running that much.

Visit 30 states - not in the budget.

Sew 30 outfits for Sophie - she'll outgrow them in a matter of months, then they'll go in a storage box.

Sell 30 photographs and donate money to charity - haven't taken a sell-able photo in a lonnnng time.

So............ I know you are wondering. What is the big plan, then? STAY TUNED!

The 1000th picture taken with my camera phone.
Sophie shopping with Papa for some new scrubs.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

On being a mom

So I just can't wait until Sophie is a year old to reflect on what a wonderful year it's been and how quickly time passes; which it has begun to do far too quickly. A little teary over here as I write... Being a mom (mommy, mother, mama, "Hey you!") takes on new meaning with each passing month - sometimes with each new week. In its simplest form, being a mom is being a warm place where comfort is sought and always found, a food source and an endless supply of I love you's. But that is where the evolution begins. Being a mom turns into also knowing how many Pampers Points you are away from that free subscription to Fitness Magazine, knowing at precisely at what moment you must leave the restaurant in order to avoid public meltdown, realizing that exactly 2 minutes and 47 seconds after you are freshly showered and dressed you will either be peed on, pooped on or spit-up on (and it's ok because that is why you wear two shirts - see? You're a pro!).

The fourth trimester a.k.a. three months old a.k.a. the "blur"

I took a lot of showers. It was a safe place to cry, which I admittedly did a lot of. I remember vividly Bryan stepping in with me, right after we got home from the hospital. He felt my uncertainty even though he might never understand it. So he held me as I stood there not totally identifying with the bowl of jelly that oscillated between my ribs and my hips. As the sun began to set each evening, I ran around the house like a banshee to turn on all the lights and light every candle. I did not want to be reminded of the long night ahead. She didn't sleep a lot, and neither did we. I did however master lots of skills in 30 seconds or less: make the bed and perfectly arrange all eight pillows (first time I ever agreed with Bryan that all those pillows were senseless), assemble or disassemble the pump, brush teeth, strap Soph into the car seat and pull out of the garage (movement was key to no crying), the list goes on. I learned to exhaust every second the 50 minutes I had between nursing sessions - a quick walk and a shower, or Target and lunch to-go... then we settled back in with the boppy in a comfy corner of the sofa.

Months four and five

First flights, road trip (we prefer flying for sure), formula, her baptism, laughter, enjoying the exersaucer and her beloved Sophie the Giraffe. Life was good again as I exited the fog and entered the warm sun with my beautiful baby girl. Our Gerber photo shoot was so much fun and Sophie's first payday - something I'll never forget. Baby girl started sleeping through the night, I'm talking 12 hours without waking. I joke that she's making up for all the sleep she didn't get as a newborn. We sold the house and I was worried about the transition for her. She did fantastic... didn't skip a beat and practically slept the entire time the movers unloaded all of our booty.

Months six and seven

The firsts started coming almost one on top of another. Sitting up on her own, swim lessons, sitting in a highchair, finally enjoying the bathtub; she changes almost daily. I get so excited when she wakes from her naps, and a little sad at the end of the day to put her down for bed (12 hours before we can play again!). She started crawling, waking some in the night, and alas, a tooth popped through just the other day. And after only two days, she scoots around in that little walker like nobodies business.


I mean.... can you tell that I am totally, fully, wholly in love with this little gummy grinning belly laughing baby girl? I'm enamored. She marches to her own beat, we just follow. Just some days I wish she would stay itty bitty forever, I do not want to wish away my time with her now. The only thing constant is change... and a mother's love. xoxo

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Random thoughts Tuesday

Far too many jumbled thoughts in this brain of mine right now, and I can't seem to make sense of putting them all together. So we'll go list form for once.

  • Ever wondered how sticky baby rice cereal is? Open a brand new box and turn it upside down, sprinkling generously over hardwoods. Vacuum, mop. Repeat.

  • Concord Mills had a lot of deals to be had this past weekend. And I had all of them.

  • I sort of miss working. The best sales job ever had me jet-setting all over creation, meeting in the war room with CEO's and other important folks and helping them communicate to investors. Blissful memories.

  • Thunder and lightening storms do happen in North Carolina and they can be taken in from the comfort of our front porch!

  • We've got some new wheels coming our way. No, not a fancy new car (drats!), but new wheels for the Baby Jogger. Great customer service. Four stars. ****

  • I still misspell pallet (pallette, palette, palet) even after working in transportation for over a year.

  • We have a lot of visitors and several trips coming up that I'm really excited about! We have flights, a rental car and I FINALLY booked a hotel for Maui this winter. Now to book all of the excursions.

  • I'm going to put away my Thanksgiving pants for good, I'm really committed to losing some weight (having a workout partner ((Rach!)) in the 'hood should help!). This means that I will be saying goodbye to the momiform, which I still haven't divulged much on in this blog. Momiform = ponytail + stretch pants + old tshirts (shower, brush teeth, repeat).

  • Date nights, even on week days, are fantastic.

  • S'mores, even made in the oven, are fantastic. Actually, maybe better because I don't have to run around the campfire yelling "white rabbit!" to keep the smoke from stinking up my hair.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Sophie's musical education

I need to enlist the help of friends from my past musical life for a very important task. Sophie has really enjoyed my recent renditions of Rent, Les Mis, Annie Get Your Gun and Hello Dolly recently... but I can't always remember the words and it sure would be more fun for me to have something to sing along with. I can fake some of them, but making up the words to Schoolhouse Rock is just wrong (Interplanet Janet sitting here on Capitol Hill... that-a-way to confuse a small child). Although we love every part of Kindermusik, mommy needs something a little more familiar to sing to Sophie and I just can't picture Ms Betsy or Ms Nancy from class belting out a little "Take Me or Leave Me" from Rent... that would be... weird.

YOUR TASK SHOULD YOU CHOSE TO ACCEPT IT: I'm not trying to encourage piracy, but hoping some of y'all could burn me some cd's of a few of my favorite musicals? Please send me a message or leave a comment if you can conveniently contribute to Sophie's continuing musical education :)

Schoolhouse Rock
Mary Poppins
Songs For A New World
Les Miserables
Into The Woods
Westside Story
Annie Get Your Gun
Anything Goes
Once Upon A Mattress

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Well, it's about that time

Some days I feel like I really have it together. Yesterday we walked with neighbors, Heidi stopped over for a visit, I got all the goodies on my list at Target (subsequently Sophie ate said list), we had the dog trainers come over for a session, I cooked an excellent dinner and ended the evening sweatin' in the heat having wine with Rachel and Jen. Today I lose my togetherness all-together when Sophie hits yet another milestone.

Well it's about that time to baby-proof the house. Dust off the outlet covers and cabinet ties that have been tucked away since the baby shower. 'Cause folks, we have a CRAWLER!

We were upstairs this morning when it first happened with Rachel and Emma. Rachel and I avoided eye contact because both of us were tearing up :) I took a really cute flip video after we got home from the gym, which I've unsuccessfully tried to upload here four times (five times now). So, I'll just end this post with a few recent pics of her royal cuteness.

Mom, seriously, enough with the pictures already!

Sophie and mom at Sushi night out with the Bottoms family!

Up wayyyy past bedtime but exited to play with Emma!

Having a snack with mom at Tasty Yo!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Red wine or bleach my teeth...

Tonight, the vino won. Lucky us, our dentist has given us free whitening for life. This is serious stuff, too. I'm talking the dentist told me to take four Advil and sleep with the trays on overnight. He was also very specific about NOT drinking red wine when the pores in your teeth are opened from the whitening... or suffer the consequence of having pink teeth. Ay-yai-yai, the choices we make!

I'm thinking that teeth whitening is an icing-on-the-cake, there-is-nothing-else-I-can-do-to-feel-prettier type thing. I have some baby lbs to shed before I need any icing on this cake (mmmmm... cake...), so maybe I'll just put those little trays away and enjoy my red wine until I'm nice and back in shape.