Sunday, December 30, 2012

Snow Baby

Abby had her first experience in the snow this weekend.  Since December decided to actually act like December and not September/October, we got several inches of snow the day after Christmas.  Abby got  bundled up in many layers of clothes and headed out.  She could barely walk in the snow - partly because the boots she was wearing were stiff, the snow was unsteady to walk on and the layers of clothes made it difficult to move. 

She didn't care to sit in the snow - maybe her toosh wasn't layered up enough?  She did face plant a couple of times and I couldn't help but chuckle out loud and then think of the movie "A Christmas Story" with the little brother, Ralph, as he was bundled up ready to go to school.  "I can't put my arms down!". 

Side Note: You know, now that I'm on a school schedule and actually get snow days, I'm bummed that it had to snow on my break.  I mean, seriously, couldn't this snow have waited a week or so and I would've gotten a bonus day off!  However, maybe this is a preview of what's to come this winter...

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Abby is Communicating!

Abby is beginning to imitate our words and just recently, spontaneously use words to communicate her wants/needs.  Plus she is able to follow simple directions and it's so cool to watch! I'm loving typical language development.  It does make me sad sometimes knowing that some of the preschool children I work with are behind Abby in communication skills.  That makes me grateful for and not take for granted my healthy child. 

Signs Abby uses:
bye bye
hi
more
eat
sleepy
bath
milk
all done
open
blow kiss

Words  Abby says (rough approximations):
open
up
hi
bye bye
dada
mama
dog
uh oh
all done

I'm impressed...and she's not even 14 months old!  

Here's a quick video I shot tonight at dinner!
video

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Pumpkins

While my parents were here for Abby's birthday, I dragged them to a pumpkin farm (that's a whole other story of how and when we went when we did...sheesh!).  I wanted to start a tradition of going to a pumpkin patch to pick out a pumpkin and enjoy some fall festivities.  I didn't always have such an affinity for all things autumn, but it's turned into one of my favorite times of year! 
So the 5 of us went to a pumpkin farm and picked out a 2 bigger pumpkins to carve and 3 smaller cute pumpkins.  Abby wasn't letting us know one way or the other how she felt as she just stared.  No crying, but no smiles either.  Tough crowd, I tell ya. 

Later that evening (after the football games...that's a hint of the complications we had with the pumpkin patch outing), we piled around the dining room table to carve Abby's first pumpkin.  Everyone got involved and I have to say, I was impressed.  Dad made the initial slice into the pumpkin to cut around the stem to pull off the top.  Mom was the brave and strong one to scoop out the guts.  Abby wasn't hesitant to touch and play with the goopy pumpkin guts.  Dad and I separated the seeds from the goop to set aside so we could roast the seeds later (Spoiler Alert: the seeds never got roasted...boo!)  Up next was Brent as he traced a pattern on the pumpkin and put his artist skills to work as he etched out an owl pattern.  It turned out fantastic! 

I've learned a few things from my first pumpkin carving in quite some time:
1. Don't carve the pumpkin so early.  It'll rot before halloween even comes. 
2. Don't seal off the seeds in hopes to keep them moist before roasting.  That grows mold.
3.  Also, don't wait several days before thinking "oh, yeah, I have seeds to roast" and then peek inside.  That grows A LOT of mold. 

**Now, you might be asking why don't I have pictures to share?  They are on my camera, but for some reason when I try to upload I get a nasty message stating that I'm out of room.  So, I don't know what to do.  How does one make more room for photos?  Can anyone shed a light on this topic? **

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Abby's new plan for Mommy

WARNING!  This post discusses the taboo topic of breastfeeding and how it pertains to me and my child.  Some may deem this TMI, but to me this is an everyday topic and I'm just putting my thoughts down. 

Now, I had been wondering when and how I was going to wean Abby from breastfeeding.  Which feeding was I going to drop?  How would Abby adjust?  How quickly would I drop another feeding?  Would I continue to pump?  How would I phase that out?  So many questions that kept whirling over my head that I didn't know how or even want to deal with. 

Little did I know that Abby had a different plan for me.

On Monday night (September 4), Abby refused to breastfeed before bed.  I didn't think much of it since I know my milk supply is low in the evenings. We ended up giving her a bottle of warmed breastmilk.  On Tuesday morning (September 5), Abby breastfed as usual as part of our morning routine.  On Tuesday evening she rejected me again by arching her back and crying.  Again, I wasn't too alarmed as I know my milk supply is lower in the evenings. It did make me sad that she rejected me two days in a row.  She had never rejected me before and certainly not two days in a row.  Was this the beginning of the end?  When Wednesday morning came and she reacted the same way, I knew Abby was done. I had breastfed her for the last time. 

Brent peeked his head into Abby's room while this was going on as Abby was fussing.  I turned to him and burst into tears.  I was not prepared for Abby to cut ME off.  I had planned that I would cut HER off.  I was not prepared for it to happen so suddenly.  Abby broke my heart as she pushed away from her primary source of nutrition for the past near 11 months of her life.  The logical side of me knows that this is a healthy sign of Abby getting older and growing up, but the emotional side of me wants to keep her a baby and latch her onto my boob. 

That day, Abby helped me decide when and how I was going to wean.  I didn't have to ponder any longer about what feeding I was going to drop.  I didn't need to stew about how Abby was going to react.  I still needed to wean pumping however, so it took me a few weeks to completely wean.  

Now that I look back on it, I don't know how I managed to breastfeed and pump for as long as I did.  I'm amazed at my dedication.  It's no small feat to take on such a task.  It's not just the time needed to breastfeed, it's the time needed to pump when you're not with your child, it's the time needed to clean the pump parts after each session.  It's the time needed to wash bottles and make bottles.  It's the time needed to prepare the milk to be frozen.  It's the orgainzation in your fridge as you line up the millk in bottles according to date.  It's the organization in your deep freezer to manage all the frozen milk.  It's the organization to pack everything you need for a 12+ hour day away from your child.  It's the time management to be able to know when you'll need to pump and allot time to do so in your busy work day.  It's also the hydration and nutrition you need to continue to consume to allow your body to sustain breastfeeding.  I am proud of myself.  I'm also proud that I was able to provide Abby with a great nutritional foundation. 

I am proud to say that I have packed up my pump and packed it away...until the next baby comes into our lives. (No, this is not an announcement). 

Sunday, October 21, 2012

HallZOOween

We went with our good friends to the zoo for their annual HallZOOween!  The zoo has stations throughout where the kids can stop and trick or treat in their costumes.  It was fun to see all the other kids' costumes.  Abby was a giraffe and that was good timing on my part as a giraffe was just born at the zoo.  Our kids were a bit too young to totally enjoy and participate, but it was still fun to get out on the sunny fall day.  


 









video
video

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Birthday Party

Abby's First Birthday Bash has arrived!  

I'm still in shock sometimes when I think about it that I have a daughter and I'm a mother, let alone have a child who is ONE!  We're in the full blown toddler stage now too.  She's walking, climbing up stairs, jabbering up a storm and amazes us everyday with things she does. 

We had a birthday party to celebrate the occasion - Brent and I surviving the first year of life with a child of course!  Many people asked me what the theme was.  The theme was getting together and eating and celebrating.  I didn't have the time, creativity or resources to have a theme. What we did have was a house full of family and friends.  

Outfit Number One: I had a onsie made with "1" and "Abby" embroidered on.  It was super cute!  Sadly, this is the best picture I have of this outfit.  I do have to add that I wasn't planning on an outfit change type of party and I don't know when during the party that I thought I would show off her birthday gear, but it happened and I'm glad we got to at least wear all the birthday themed outfits! 

Outfit Number Two: A party dress that was made just for the "birthday girl".  We got this dress from Kim Johnivan - thank you!  It fit her perfectly and was so darling to wear.




"Outfit" Number Three:  A diaper.  I've seen enough first birthday cake pictures to know that the least amount of clothes involved is best. 








See? The cake got EVERYWHERE!  She went straight to the bath being carried at an arm's length away.  She loved the cupcake - after a little prodding to shove it in her face.  But she delivered.  That's my girl!  

Thanks all for the great birthday party!  Thanks to all who came!  (Can you imagine how stuffed our place would be if everyone came that we invited?  We'd be sardines!  We would have loved to invite more too.)

Friday, October 12, 2012

More birthday girl pics...

"Cutest Birthday Girl Ever"

Abby loves these bead necklaces that I found in the Target dollar bins.  She loves to put them around her neck and to take them off.  Over and over again.  I think she might be a girly girl.  Remember her putting Lacey's collar on as a bracelet?  She does that all the time too. Time will only tell...

Oh, and we're officially walking.  She began taking 4-5 shaky steps on September 22 and just a few days later on September 27, she was walking longer distances of 10-12 steps.  By October 12, crawling became a method to get to a furniture piece so she could stand up and walk.  Walking is now the primary mode of mobility.  We have to watch our gate around the stairs as it has a door in it (it's really a dog cage that straightens out and we have it across our split level house stairs) that you have to step over to get in and out of the living room.  Guess who steps over the gate with ease? Our own Abby!  Yea? 

Happy Birthday!

We had camera malfunctions (perhaps user error??) waking Abby up with a song, so we had to have a "redo".  My baby is one!  I cannot believe that it's been a year!  Brent and I survived a year!  Wahoo!  

  video




Such a happy sweet loving smart girl who is ONE!  

Abigail Jean, your daddy and I love you more than you will ever know! 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

It's Collar Time!

I look up to see Abby trying to put Lacey's collar on.  ...And when she can't get it on Lacey's head, she puts it on her wrist and wear it as a bracelet.  Because that's what everyone does with a collar you can't put on, right? 



Thursday, September 13, 2012

Who needs toys?

Who needs toys to play with when you can play with your clothes?  

 
 



Ohmygosh, I love this little girl!