Baby Baby, Family

Six Months, x2

Sissy, two weeks old:

Sissy, six months old:

What we’ve learned:

  • Re-learning cloth diapering, now for two, full time.  Your Alvas finally came in last month while we were out of town.  Kinda’ in love with the cute patterns.  They do give you even more of a badonkadonk, though. ha!
  • I’m learning how to be a SAHM!  Just started, still finding our groove.  But what strikes me the most so far?  How AT PEACE I am, both with the decision, but also just… in general.  No churning gut as the school year starts and I face leaving you both again every day, only to see you for dinner and bath. :-(  No constant racing against the clock, waking you both up, dragging everything to daycare, racing down the highway after work to pick you up and see you. We have TIME, this rare and precious gift.  I am trying to savor it, to revel in our relaxed breakfast time, enjoy our backyard playtime, sing songs during snack, that kind of thing.  And I am LOVING it, and I think you both are, too, which is what is REALLY important.

  • We have figured out baths, again… They can finally be a one-person job!  We have put you back in your baby/toddler tub, because now you aren’t flipping out of the newborn sling or arching your back over the toddler seat.  Just sitting (and reaching and grabbing for whatever catches your eye at the moment).  You really do seem to finally love the water.  We took you to the pool and waterpark a few times now, using a water sling so I could wear you–and you just get so relaxed and zen.
  • How to set up a buffer zone.  You are officially crawling (albeit still very slowly–I suppose you are “creeping.”).  So now we have started setting up pillows anywhere you may roll over unexpectedly or chew on if you reach them, like in front of the sharp corners on the bottom of our coffee table, and over the piano pedals (I’ve caught you gnawing a piano leg more than once). (Here, you’re looking at a squishy book that was MINE, goodness…  35 years ago.)

What you’ve learned:

  • Definite forward motion.  You LOVE it.  You still do the adorable wiggle-wiggle-wiggle-CRASH when you get excited, but also make conscious decisions to go get a toy or a cat or the piano and MOVE.  You are also enjoying your exersaucer lately, and can work up quite the bounce–almost rivaling your brother at this age–ALMOST.

  • It’s so amazing to notice how refined your hand-eye coordination and motor planning are becoming.  You seem like such a thoughtful little one.  You gaze at a toy placed on your high chair tray for a few moments, then turn it over, and chew it, and back off and look at it again–really study it–before dropping it over the side.  ;-)  Then you bend over the edge of your high chair, chew on the arm, and just staaaare at your toy, so far away now.

What we always want to remember:
  • How, for a few weeks, you would sing yourself to sleep.  You would cry, but quickly wind down to a whine, then the whine would turn into little coos, and you would drift right off.  You haven’t done it for a little while now, and I think I missed my window for capturing it on video.  ::sniffsniff::
  • Your first trip to Fritz’s!  You didn’t care as much for the trains as Brother did, but at least you would wear the hat! ;-)

  • How much you love being outside.  You relax and are very chill when we go outdoors.  It’s a great cure for general fussiness, though on your most clingy days, you still prefer I be on the quilt or next to the swing with you.  xoxox

  • Your first trip to the zoo!  You were a trooper!  We bought a little elephant for you in the gift shop.  You love om-nom-nom-ing its trunk.  ha!

  • How Daddy will trim the coffee filters each morning to fit our mini coffeemaker basket, and gift you with a pretty paper crown, fit for our princess.

  • (Lots of first trips this month!) Your first trip to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art!  You didn’t tolerate the stroller for too terribly long, but were otherwise a peach.  You were particularly attracted to a Tiffany lamp. ;-)  You chose a big knitted block with a cute owl on it as your gift from the gift shop.

Baby Baby

Five Months, x2

Miss Bedelia, two weeks old:

Miss Bedelia, five months old:

What we’ve learned:

  • You have mama’s temperament for mastery of new skills.  You want to be able to do it, and do it well, NOW.  Not after some practice, not by giving it some time, it’s NOW or nothing.  Which may explain your lack of progress on the rolling over/crawling front. :-)  You do scoot backwards, given a long stretch of time, but that’s just not doin’ it for ya.
  • We’re mastering the art of homemade baby food again!  Right now, the freezer is stocked with squash, zucchini, sweet potatoes, carrots, peas, and bananas, with a batch of green beans steaming in the rice cooker as I type.  Your favorites so far have been sweet potatoes, carrots, peas, and bananas.  You didn’t care for food at first, so we put it off for awhile until you were really interested.  Then you didn’t care for your first foods–oatmeal, rice, and squash.  But the first time you laid lips on carrots, there was no stopping you! (And no, I don’t blame us for using homemade food, either–we used storebought during our big trip, and you weren’t really a fan, then, either.)
  • I can no longer play on my phone while nursing you or trying to rock you to sleep.  You pay entirely TOO much attention to it.  I also have to set your quilt up downstairs on the other side of the family room, away from the TV.

What you’ve learned:

  • You have figured out that our glasses are not attached to us, and that you can pull them off our face.  You are then, of course, rewarded for it by our surprise, or our grimace, or our “oops!”, so you keep doing it again, and again.  You’re in the grabby/pinchy phases, too, and my cheeks are about to give out. :-)

  • The cats fascinate you.  You watch them as they walk around the room.  You call out when they come near you.  You reach out to touch their fur, so soft…  Thankfully you haven’t grabbed/pinched them yet.  Although luckily, they’re so sweet-natured, you’d only get a handful of fur in response, even if you did.
What we always want to remember:
  • Your first time swimming!  Just in the baby pool in our backyard.  You were not a fan.  But then, it was cold…  So we tried it again on another day, and we let the water warm up all day.  You were not a fan.  LOL  But LOOK HOW CUTE YOU ARE IN YOUR SWIMSUIT!!!
  • You are so cute–you do this great push-up, then see a toy you want, or your brother, or us, or a cat–and get so excited, all your limbs wiggle-wiggle-wiggle at once, and you fall down on your tummy.  Crash landing.  But you’re still so excited over whatever or whoever you saw that caused you to wiggle-wiggle-wiggle, that you don’t care, just give us/them/it a HUGE grin.  SO ADORABLE.

  • Tour de Sissy!  We went on our pilgrimage, to grandparents’ houses and beyond, introducing you to our family and friends.  I’ll do another post about that later. :-)
  • You are blowing raspberries like crazy.  We’re getting fun squeals and real laughs, now, too.  It is hard to tell if the raspberries are a ‘fun’ or ‘frustrated’ sound–but mostly, they seem to be a ‘fun’ one. :-)  Bubby still elicits the best laughs and reactions from you.  HUGE smiles, and you’re reaching for him now, too.

  •  You are an over-achiever–you decided to cut not ONE tooth, but TWO teeth your first time teething.  And you did it on our 2-day return from an 11-day trip around the state, visiting friends and relatives to show you off.  OH.MY.  Poor thing!

Baby Baby

Four Months, x2

Little Miss Rufflebottom, two weeks old:

Little Miss Rufflebottom, four months old:

What we’ve learned:

  • Well, my little failsafe to get Sissy to sleep quit working this month.  You no longer fall asleep while nursing.  Even car rides don’t work the magic they used to.  We’re transitioning back to being at home full time, after being in daycare for 2 months, too, and you are having a little trouble figuring out how to sleep during the day here.  I have finally convinced you to take at least a morning nap in the swing, after a week of trying everything at least 3x.  I’ve even managed to get 2 short naps in your bouncy.  We’ll figure it out.
  • You LOVE having your belly scratched.  Or your cheeks nibbled.  Or your chin(s) tickled.  Sweet, smiley baby!
  • You are going through a clingy phase–which probably wouldn’t be that noticeable except I hurt my back at work and so it has been so difficult to pick you up and carry you, many days.  Moby wrap to the rescue!!  I am hoping it stays sort of cool-ish for a bit longer so I can keep trying to use it!

What you’ve learned:

  • Rolling over, from back to front.

  • How to put things in your mouth–ANYthing!  (Which we have to watch very carefully since Bubbaloo is perfectly willing to bring anything TO you and try to put it in your mouth anyway!)  In fact, call us crazy, but we think you’ve been teething most of this past month…  Lots of drool.  Lots of gnawing on fingers and stuffies.  A newfound love for teething rings.

  • That whole ‘controlling-your-hands’ thing is handy for us, because you also rub your eyes now when you’re tired, a nice clear signal to help you take a nap, and we can give you toys–which you can at least sorta-kinda keep ahold of.
What we always want to remember:
  • You’re going to be a tough cookie, your brother is helping…  He loves you, and wants to play with you–so sometimes he gets a little too excited and is too fast or rough with you.  He was bopping you in the face with your peacock toy, over and over–I scramble to get to you, and he’s just giggling and giggling and saying, “kik, kik, kik!”  I snatched the toy away, and said, “Stop!” and then remembered, Little Man says the same thing when he wants me to kiss his boo-boo.  I asked him if the peacock was kissing Sissy, and he said, “Yeah!”  So I showed him how to do it slowly, and gently, and he did it the right way after that.  So I think it’s mostly just a matter of him learning how to play with a baby. :-)
  • I think one of the biggest benefits to my staying home this next year is that I will get to watch your relationship grow as siblings.  Honestly, I hadn’t even thought about it, really, I felt like this was something we as parents would shape and direct–but you two are really forging your own bond, and it’s amazing for this only to watch.  (He is the reason she had lamb stuffies in the picture up top–he saw the lamb on her sleeper and went to bring his two lamb stuffed animals for her to play with.)

  • Your little chuckles, usually elicited by Izzy or Dada, especially when Daddy does an “Amy Attack” on your brother (hand-over-hand combat) ;-).
  • You talk up a STORM to the ceiling fan.  He’s your bestie.
  • You do this cute little stop-nursing-and-break-into-an-adorable-slow-grin thing, I love it. :-)

Baby Baby

Three Months, x2

Baby Girl, one day old

Baby Girl, three months old:

What we’ve learned:

  • You *hate* getting your nose squishied (bulb syringe…)
  • You are also not a fan of the swing, unlike your brother.  You will tolerate it, though, if you must…
  • You will have days where you only take catnaps, and days where you are barely awake for three hours…  You tend to have 1 or 2 very awake days, followed by 1 or 2 almost comatose days.  You aren’t on a schedule yet, although your nighttime sleep is pretty consistent now.  You like to fall asleep around 7:30, eat at 1, 3, and 5:30, then wake around 7:30.  You tend to take a mid morning, mid day, and evening nap, but the timing is still pretty erratic.

What you’ve learned:

  • You are flipping up on your right side!  You can even (just barely) cross your left leg over…  just a little more, and gravity will take care of the rest, and you’ll be rolling over!  (Oooooh, 2 mobile babies??)
  • You are vocalizing with much more variety and range.  You’ve always been pretty expressive, but it is so cute to hear a personality coming out now, too!

What we always want to remember:
  • Your baptism.  It was snowed out last month; this month, we held it on the same day as your brother’s 2nd birthday party.  The grandparents were in, and they, and us, and your godparents all went out for brunch afterwards.  You did pretty well, although you really wanted a nap during pictures. ;-)

  • Your eyelashes are really filling out and growing longer, so beautiful!  Your hair is still dark, and all together with your happy smile, you are the prettiest baby ever!
  • I love how you are grabbing my fingers and cooing and gurgling and raspberrying to me while you sit in your bouncy or on my knees.  Precious, precious girl.  xoxoxox

  • How you survived a weekend home alone with Bubby and Mama.  We made it, somehow, all in one piece.
Baby Baby

gTwo Months, x2

Baby Girl, one day old

Baby Girl, two months old:

What we’ve learned:
That having two under two is a blessing.  Not a quiet blessing, nor a calm blessing, but a blessing nonetheless.
You are a much mellower baby than big brother.  We can actually all eat dinner at the same time, unheard of when Little Man was your age.  You hang out in the bouncy, next to the kitchen table, while the 3 of us eat, and we just talk to you and make faces once in awhile, and you are just very happy, hanging out. :-)
You adore your brother.  Your face lights up whenever you catch a glimpse of him (which, sometimes, is all you can catch, because he is on the MOVE! lol).   And the feeling is mutual!  He loves to kiss on you and is learning to imitate your vocalizations like Mama and Dada do, so he can ‘talk’ to you.
You are over, yes, OVER the 97th percentile for your weight at this age.  They just don’t even bother to specify once it gets over 97th, you’re in that little infinite tail at the top end of the bell curve.  And I love it.  I love having a chunkamonk babe, you are so stinkin’ CUTE.

That taking you to daycare was just as gut-wrenching as taking  Bubby.  Except I had less time to wallow in it, since I had to go back to work (bed rest ate up my FMLA).  So you went into full time daycare on my first day back.  I console myself with the knowledge that you’ll have me fulltime in the fall, as I have not renewed my teaching contract and am planning on staying home with you and your brother next year.  xoxox

You are so aware, already.  Just very *with it.*  Less than a week after you turned one month old, you were already showing you understood when your diaper was about to be changed, or you were about to be fed.  It’s very helpful when you cry now, because I can just lay you on the changing pad, or Boppy, or play gym, and if you calm down, I know I’m on the right track.  If not, I just abandon ship and move somewhere else.  LOL

Walks, however, conk you right out, regardless. (Wearing the cutest coat EVER, that your Papa Yount bought just for you.)

What we always want to remember:
Your first Easter. (She’s modeling a onesie from Grandma Robins and the bunny ears from her Easter basket.)

How your baptism got snowed out, the week before Easter.   So you wore your baptism dress for Easter, instead.  It was your church debut, too, so you got lots of adoring visitors stopping by to say hi.
You still have your serious librarian look, much of the time.

How much fun you have in your play gym, batting at objects (the purple and green polka dot ring is your favorite toy, although the crinkly block may be taking first place soon).

How strong you are, already pushing up!

Your dazzling smiles.  I have had little success capturing them on camera, but you zero in on one of us (or occasionally, the lamp or ceiling fan), and this smile starts in your eyes, and soon encompasses your whole face!  So amazing, and you’re starting to give little laughs, too.  And you got your Mama’s googly eye (one eye squishes up more than the other, because one side of our smile hitches up a bit more).

Baby Baby

One Month, x2

Sissy, one day old:

Sissy, one month old:

What we’ve learned about you:

  • You love to sleep on our chest.
  • You are very concerned about the world around you.  You are my serious girl (that furrowed brow is almost omnipresent).

  • You are a squawker, full of snuffles and snorts and grunts and gurgles.  You are a noisy eater, too, and have earned the nickname Squeaker.
  • You like baths, ahhhhh.  (And your hair has an undeniable wave to it after a bath…  will you have curly hair?)
  • That you love changing tables and changing pads.  When no other baby-soothing trick will do,  sometimes just laying you down on a changing table or changing pad will work some sort of voodoo magic.  And it’s not just any vinyl surface…  For example, when you are in this kind of mood, the pack and play won’t work, even though it’s the same material. :-)

  • You actually sleep on your own sometimes, it’s a shocker! (and no, I don’t leave her on her tummy to sleep, this was just for a photo shoot…)

What I Want to Remember

  • Scrambling to hold you as soon as I could after the birth.
  • The poor timing of your hospital photo shoot…



  • Your sleepy grins

  • Your sweet open-mouthed kisses.
  • How you pull your head up and waaay back, and pull your legs up super tight and streeeeeeeeeeeeetch when we change positions with you when you’re sleeping.
  • Sibling rivalry has already started, with competitive tummy time.

  • How strong you are, my foster mom wrote about how I was holding my head up constantly when on her shoulder, and you have been the same way.  (And a side note, your hair looks a lot like a “mad spider,” as mine did, but then your brother still had dark hair at this point, so who knows if you’re getting that from me!)

  • How, even in the hospital, you would turn to the sound of my voice, and calm when I held you close.  You’re a mama’s girl, much of the time.
  • Your Little Miss Sassypants cough you have that lets know you’re winding up–it’s this cute little scoff to tell us you wont tolerate it, whatever it is.
  • How you reduce my dad, your PaPa, to absolute mush. ;-)

  • Your adorable double chin and chunky monkey thighs.
  • How much Bubby loves being your big brother… He brings you toys, or blankets, or pacifiers when you cry, to try to appease you…  He showers you with kisses whenever he can get close enough to you, and requests to see you before he leaves the house, as soon as he gets home, before he goes to bed, after his bath…  He loves you so so much.

Baby Baby, Family, Uncategorized

The Birth, Part 3 (and the end!)

I never did get around to finishing the story of Bubby’s birth.  (Here is Part 1 and Part 2 if you’re interested…)  I figured now was a good time to finish this story, because in less than a month, I will have yet ANOTHER birth story to share with you! :-D


Really, there isn’t much left to tell.  I was well into the transition phase, verging on being able to push, and was beyond comfort measures, I just needed to get in a position and GO.  I felt like it was time to push before they would let me–my doctor hadn’t arrived yet, and they wanted me to wait for him, but that’s just ridiculous.  When it’s time, it’s time, and especially without an epidural, I could definitely understand what my body was telling me!  {436737f2-c9b8-4377-9c43-59a6e685f49b}_5BW

I had a hard time pushing.  By the time my doctor arrived, I was beyond ready to get down to business and get this baby out…  I had many uncomfortable and intensifying Braxton-Hicks leading up to the birth, and so had a little technique down for breathing through the tension and peak of the contraction.  I used it well during early labor.  The problem now was that I was continuing to use it.  It took at least a half hour of me pushing ineffectively before someone finally told me I needed to hold my breath and use that to bear down during my pushing.  Oh!  That would have been good to know!  I was still having difficulty, just could not figure out the correct muscles to engage.  Our doula finally whipped out the rebozo, tied a knot in it and told me to hang on.  I would pull with all my might during the wave of the contraction against her weight on the other end.  This helped so much!  It was still a long process, one which I hope to be much better at this time, but those two things helped immensely.  I wore her out, eventually the nurse had to switch out with her to keep going.{436737f2-c9b8-4377-9c43-59a6e685f49b}_6BW

All in all, it took 2.5 hours of pushing to bring Izzy into this world.  (He is of course, worth it!)  We found out that would have been ample time to have an epidural after all!  But I did feel pretty dang “I can conquer anything” after giving birth without drugs…  Overall, my doula was so happy about my birth, and the more I have reflected on it, I realize how right she is.  I got everything I wanted in this experience!  I got to use my music, I had the majority of my early and even active labor at home, no drugs, wear what I wanted, etc.  This was an amazing, magical time for our family, and I absolutely love looking back at these pictures…  I can’t believe so much time has passed already.  He will be 21 months in a few days!