Wednesday, January 30, 2013

4 months!

Feeling a tad bit like my eyes are going to bulge out of my head from this cold I've been fighting, but here goes my attempt at making sense....

Everett is 4 months old. At least that's what one can assume from the details on his birth certificate. In my mind it doesn't seem possible.


Height 24 in, 8th percentile
Weight 14 lb 3 oz, 22nd percentile
Head 16 3/4 in, 78th percentile

(I can assure you the 22nd percentile in weight is a deceitful little statistic. Ohh the rolls. Apparently he's chubbier cuz he's short.)

Everett at 4 months, you:

Eat. My word do you eat. Should any of us get between you and your milk when it's time to eat, WATCH OUT. 6 ounces, 5x a day, a mix of beast milk and formula. And I think 90% of it goes to your cheeks. And maybe the rest to your love handles. :) so cute.

Are really a great sleeper. You typically eat for the last time around 8:30 and then sleep until at least 7, sometimes a little earlier, sometimes later. You still take 3 naps a day, although this week you've started fighting it. But I let you cry for awhile (judge if you must, folks) and you'll go back to sleep. If I get you up, you're tired and grumpy all day and neither of us finds that particularly enjoyable.

Got sick for the first time. :( The doctor said croup but I'm not so sure. You did not have the croup cough. You had a few days of not sleeping during the day and waking up at night. But you're over that part now, although you're still kinda raspy sounding, even on day 11 of sickness. Ugh. Poor guy.

You've started waking up so happy. This is a thrilling change from waking up screaming bloody murder until you were fed. Every morning you wake up talking. You will often talk for 10 minutes or so until you start to get frustrated, and it is a perfect start to my day.

Still have reflux. It's been pretty bad this week while you've been sick. Boo.

Roll easily from tummy to back. You can roll from back to tummy, but the only time you do it is in an attempt to escape a diaper change.

Can officially get out of your little bed. This was a fun discovery. You didn't cry or make any noise, but I happened to look at the video monitor during one of your naps and you had rolled over on your tummy (still with one arm and both legs swaddled. You talented thing you) and scooted yourself down so that your head was all the way at the bottom of your bed and your legs were dangling precariously off the side. I made a mad dash to get you before you plummeted, and you've been harnessed during sleep ever since. Not ideal, but you hate the crib and I thought transitioning while you were sick and not sleeping well already wasn't good either. Very soon though. Your sleeper days are numbered.

You are all boy all the time. No time for kisses and cuddles. You will put your head on my shoulder only if you're about to fall asleep. You must be up and looking around and bouncing (while standing) always. You go nuts in the jumparoo and throw yourself all over the place. I'm mildly concerned about your brain jostling around in your head that hard. If you're laying down, you kick your feet the whole time and throw your arms up and down. You love to 'ride the horsey' and you stick your chest out and look so proud of yourself the whole time. When you get to be mobile, I am in serious trouble.

Speaking of mobile, you've got the legs part of crawling down but not so much the arms. You can scoot forward with your legs but your arms just won't follow yet.

Pretty sure teething is in our near future. You're drooling a lot and you gnaw on my fingers all day long. (You're not partial, it's just that they are always there. You will chew on anything you can get near your face.) I can feel your teeth under your gums.

You've gotten pretty good at grabbing things. You'll hold onto toys we hand you. I think you may be left handed. You suck mostly on your left thumb and you're better at grabbing with your left hand.

You belly laughed for the first time this week. At Aunt Raine. Who is obviously much more funny than we are since she's the only one you've laughed at real hard like that.

You've gotten into a favorite sleep position. You turn your head to the left, stick your left thumb in your mouth and stick your right hand on your right ear, then you just suck away until you fall asleep. You prefer sleeping on your left side but the harness is preventing that at the moment.

Your little personality is showing so much these days and we just love it. You definitely won't be our calm, quiet, reserved little guy. Can't wait to see it more and more. We love you so much!!!

Look how you have changed in 4 months!

Exhibit of constant movement, making it hard to take pictures that aren't blurry, below:

And then a sleepy photo, just for the sake of cuteness. Excuse me while I stop typing this to squeeze those cheeks.

And so I never forget how adorable it is that you always sleep with your left thumb in your mouth, even if I have to catch it on the monitor because you refuse to sleep with me holding you (except for after your shots and I have to be honest, it makes my heart so happy to cuddle, even if it is because of shots)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Lord Has Done Great Things For Us

And we are filled with joy.

I put that verse on our Christmas card this year and it has come to my mind so often in the past year. We found out we were expecting almost exactly a year ago, and what a journey it has been. I could not be more grateful for the love and support of friends and family through this process. We have been loved so well by them. We have been showered with gifts, brought meals, encouraged with words and emails and texts and on Facebook ... Oh my.

One of the best things I have experienced through this is other moms, who I respect, that don't pretend to be parenting and living perfectly. Who don't look at me like an insane person when I'm honest about how hard this is. Who constantly check up on me and admit their own struggles. I think Facebook photos are great, and they have their place, and I love to be able to stay in touch and connected that way. But no one posts pictures of their screaming baby at 3 am, or of themselves crying at 3 am because they have a screaming baby. Or of the argument they got in with their spouse at 3 am while all this was going on. So sometimes when you are really struggling, it's easy to look at other people's Facebook lives and feel like an utter failure. And I'm so grateful for people in my life who share the messy, sometimes ugly, scary parts of life that aren't Facebook photo worthy. And yes, often when 3 am passes and it's daylight again, you can laugh at your crazy sleep- deprived self. But sometimes in those crazy moments, it makes all the difference to know there are other people with the same crazy. So for that knowledge, I'm so grateful.

Also, I can't go without saying that I absolutely would not have made it through this without Patrick. To say that he is supportive doesn't begin to do him justice. When I completely lost my cool with our 6 day old baby and had to go sit out on the back porch (in just a t shirt), he did not look at me like I was nuts. In the moments when I really didn't think I could do this, he had perfectly encouraging words every single time. When I mourned the way our marriage had changed overnight (even though it's a GOOD change, it was a hard one), he agreed with me and encouraged me and told me how important I was to him at all the right times. When I looked at him when we got home from the hospital and said 'Why did we do this again?' he did not tell me I was a terrible mom for saying that. And when I cried pretty much every day for at least 2 weeks, he hugged me and told me he thought it was hard too and that I was doing so great and that Everett was so lucky to have me as his mom. (Which in that moment may not have been completely true, but it was exactly what I needed.) :)

I think things that are really hard, even if they are things that are so good, tend to magnify what you already have. It turns out I have a solid marriage, and extremely awesome family and friends. And until this, I probably wouldn't have known how awesome.

The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy. Even at 3 am. Which, you my have noticed, is when this is being posted. :)

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

New Years Resolutions

I won't even say anything about why I'm late with these. Comes with the territory.

I have a hard time with resolutions for a lot of reasons. One is that I lack discipline. (In some areas. In others, I have great discipline. I am a strict rule follower so if it feels like a rule, I have perfect discipline. But if it feels like cleaning my shower, well, not a chance.) The other is that a lot of resolutions seem dumb. Yes, I could resolve to create a life management binder with three months worth of meals planned out and 92 books I want to read and a strict workout regimen and cleaning schedule, but the truth is that is setting myself up for failure so I am not doing that. Although my husband would probably enjoy a bit more organization and home cooked meals around here. The other issue I have is really- who cares?? Life management binders have their place but in the grand scheme of things- who really cares if I stick perfectly to running so many times a week and making a certain number of meals? Apparently I don't care enough to do it, so I'm not. This year, my resolutions look a little different.

1. Have fun. I tend to be a bit of a homebody sometimes. I love to sit by my fireplace with my husband and watch TV or read. And I don't intend to stop doing that. But Patrick likes a little more adventure than that, and we have a child now who probably will too. So in 2013, I'd like to do more fun, dare I say spontaneous even, things. I have no specific plan for this. And I'm ok with that. (And really I feel like I've taken a step in the right direction already by deciding to go to the rodeo even though my first thought was 'Ugh, so many crowds and long lines and you have to take a shuttle, and you are there for so. many. hours. etc etc. See? I'm loads of fun!)

2. Rest more on the weekends. Basically, this is a resolve to get more done during the week because stuff has to be done. But it currently all gets piled up on the weekends and then everyone is tired when it's time to start the week over. Not in 2013!!

3. Clean my shower more often. (See above.) I don't have to work too hard at this due to the fact that I will not even admit here how many times I have ever cleaned our shower and let's just say, you can tell. Yes, it was left in a state of disrepair by the previous owners but either way. I must contribute more to it's cleanliness. Again, no specifics. Just do more.

4. Chill out. Part of me has been forced to chill out some since having a baby because if anything says 'you have no control over this situation', it's often parenthood. But part of me is even more uptight since having a baby. He is on a great schedule, and I absolutely love that. It means he is awake and asleep for the right amount of time during the day and I know what our days look like and he is usually a good night sleeper. (Yes, I realize a lot of that is just the luck of the draw. Some babies just aren't great sleepers.) But because he now sleeps at night, and this sleeping mama is a happy mama, I guard that nighttime sleep with my life. I'm fairly certain that starting a nap 8 minutes early won't result in 18 years of sleepless nights. And also, his father allowing more foam in his bottle than I do won't cause his intestines to spontaneously combust. So while I've learned to simmer down about things like putting on make up and saying in my pajamas for 3 days, there are some other areas in which I could really stand to chill out.

5. Do things with my husband that he enjoys. I almost didn't put this on here because I knew he would read it. It could still be a resolution without me telling him, right? Plus I have zero interest in mountain biking, which is his latest love. So let it be known that this is not a resolve to take up cycling. But if he wants to drive 45 minutes to some dive with great chicken fried steak that he saw on TV, I should be able to get on board with that every now and then. (Success #1: I've already agreed to go to a bike race the weekend of his birthday. Progress, people!)

6. Get out more during the week. Now that my boy lets me sleep, I can carry on true conversations again and there is no reason for me to stay home as much as I do. (See: 'chill out' and 'have fun.') I backed off from most of my responsibilities and quit my job when Everett was born. I think those were all good decisions as I needed that time. But I don't need it anymore. Time to get back out there! (Not in the 'online dating' sort of way.) I'm going to combine this with 'be a better friend.' Like, send some snail mail notes, check on people more often, etc. I feel like I've taken a bit of a hiatus from live since I went on bed rest and it's time for that to end.

7. Find a hobby. Since I quit my job, I have found that I need to have some other purpose in my life besides feeding and tickling a baby. Not that I mean to discount those things in any way because I absolutely love them and I am SO grateful that I get to do them. But I need something else. I was telling Patrick the other day that I haven't loved any of the Advent studies that I've done the last couple years and he said 'Why don't you write your own?' Good question. Maybe I will! Well, maybe I won't do that, but I love to read and write and research (I know, I told you. Loads of fun.) so maybe I will do something along those lines. Either way, I need a hobby.

8. As Everett gets older, be more intentional with our time. I have to be careful with goals like this because I'm such a perfectionist that I need to see results. So I don't mean that I resolve to have the first 6 month old who can read. And even for the rest of 2013, he's young enough that he's not going to remember anything we do later in life. But still, I would like to find a way to be more intentional. (Probably I feel this way because it has rained an average of 99% of the last month and I haven't been able to take him outside much and I'm going a tad bit insane.)

9. Be more consistent with my time with God. Notice I didn't say every single day. I've got to be realistic. I realize that's ideal but right now, I'll just take progress as progress. (Yes this should have been my #1. Let's pretend we are working backwards.)

10. I feel like I need to add a 10th to round it out because 9 resolutions seems weird. So I'm resolving to get rid of some junk. We have already done a lot of that around here in the last couple weeks but it seems like we still just have so much stuff. We have stuff in the garage and all of our closets that we never use. This year, I'd like to go through and find a place for what we do use and get rid of what we don't. We need to do a better job of managing our stuff and our money. (Another thing that slipped through the cracks during pregnancy/ early mommyhood.)

***Oh and I'm adding in a random one here: use gift cards. I have a stack of gift cards coupled with some random fear of running completely out of money and having to purchase Ann Taylor Loft dresses and somehow turn them into food. Also, use candles. I seem to hoard those as well and I LOVE burning candles.

There you have it! Most of the people who read this know me really well and see me living day to day, so you will all know if I succeed at any of these in 2013!