Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My Mother's Hands

Long fingers that looked like she should have taken piano lessons at some point in her life. Fair skin that required loads of sunscreen for anytime spent outdoors. Cool skin that always felt wonderful on a feverish head. Slightly bitten nails she would try to hide from others. These are my mother’s hands.

My mother’s hands are a direct extension of her heart. These hands held me when I was little. They shooshed me when I was upset. They held my hands tight keeping me safe. They would pull me away from danger or give a gentle push when I needed encouragement. They helped me hold books and handed me toys. They cleaned me and fed me. They would write me notes that found their way into my lunch box. They braided my hair and helped me tie my shoes. They wiped away tears and applauded me when I had done something good. They taught me to make clover chains and how to hand over a credit card.

These hands that raised me are now caring for the hands that raised them. Those hands now take care of my grandmothers silver hair. Those hands help my grandfather when he can’t get the batteries back into his remote. Those hands prepare their meals and do all of their shopping. Those hands help them do laundry and drive them to appointments. Those hands take care of their medicine and bills. Those hands care for my grandparents in the same loving manner they cared for me.

My son is lucky that he gets to feel the love of my Mother’s Hands. I watch them gently pick him up and caress his chubby cheek. I watch those hands gently pat his back and tickle his toes. I watch him fall in love with the owner of those hands, just as I did as a baby.

I hope one day my son will affectionately remember my hands as I remember my mothers. And should the day come that my hands have to take care of the hands that raised me, that they deliver the same love and care that they deserve.

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Monday, October 24, 2011

October 17, 2011 = 2 Months of Life!!

2 Month Old Paisley Andrew
Another month has already come and gone.  If anyone has found the secret to keeping their little ones little, now would be a great time to let me in on the secret.  In some ways, it seems like it was just yesterday I was on the operating table waiting to hear that first little cry.  In other ways, it feels like P has been a part of our lives forever.  But, in all reality, the little guy is 2 months old.  2 months....
Stats at birth:      Stats at 1 month:        Stats at 2 month:           

6lbs. 5.9oz           8lbs. 12oz                     11lbs.

19 inches long      21 inches long               22 inches long

He continues to dine exclusively on breastmilk.  Our goal is to get to 6 months before we introduce him to anything else (cereal, etc.) and if we can make it 6 months without an issue, we may push for a full year of nothing but exclusively breastfeeding. *fingers crossed*

He has slept through an entire night on 2 different occasions.  Just a few nights ago, I put him down at 9:22 and he didn't get up until 4:15!  It was the best nights rest I'd had in a long time!  He is also a crib sleeper!  Previously he had been sleeping in his bassinett, but we have since moved him to his crib.  Even if he isn't completely asleep, I'll put him in his crib between 9-10pm and he will put himself to sleep.  We are still swaddleing him however he always works his little hands out so he can put them by his face. 

Our sleeping angel
He has had a few firsts during his second month of life! 
-Went on his first camping trip (success!). 
-Attended the West Side Fall Festival. 
-Giggeled at his daddy on purpose.
-Smiled at both daddy and I on purpose.
-Made flirty eyes and smirked at both his Nana and I.
-He tries to talk and makes sounds like "Noooo" "Hiiiiiii" and "Ewwwww." 
-Grabs Momma's hair with no desire to let go. 
-Makes eye contact and holds it.

He continues to roll over from his stomach to back.  We can barely get him to do any tummy time because he rolls right to his back.  He has been rolling since he was 2 weeks old, but he does it much more frequently now. 

He has started spending his days with his grandparents while his Mom and Dad are at work.  He spends most days with his paternal grandparents but if they are busy he goes to his maternal grandparents house.

He is getting really close to holding his head up full time.  He can do it for awhile but then gets tired and needs a little support. 

He has outgrown all newborn clothing and fits nicely in 0-3 months!
He's outgrown all of his newborn onesies!
With him changing more and more each day I can't wait to see what 3 months will bring!!

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Monday, October 10, 2011

Anything Like Me

Scott & Little Scott
It's been awhile since I posted a song that summed up our lives.  The song below could bring tears to my eyes during pregnancy.  These days when I hear it, I can only smile.  Here is our song to our baby boy...

Anything Like Me
By Brad Paisley

I remember sayin' I don't care either way

Just as long as he or she is healthy, I'm okay
And then the doctor pointed to the corner of the screen
And said, "You see that thing right there? Well, you know what that means"
I started wondering who he was going to be
And I thought heaven help us if he's anything like me
He'll probably climb a tree too tall and ride his bike too fast
End up every summer wearin' something in a cast

He's gonna throw a ball and break some glass
In a window down the street
He's gonna get in trouble, oh, he's gonna get in fights
I'm gonna lose my temper and some sleep
It's safe to say that I'm gonna get my payback
If he's anything like me

I can see him right now, knees all skinned up
With a magnifying glass tryin' to melt a Tonka truck
Won't he be a sight with his football helmet on?
That'll be his first love 'til his first love comes along

He'll get his heart broke by the time he's in his teens
And heaven help him if he's anything like me
He'll probably stay out too late and drive his car too fast
Get a speeding ticket, he'll pay for mowing grass
He's gonna get caught skippin' class
And be grounded for a week

He's gonna get into trouble, we're gonna get in fights
I'm gonna lose my temper and some sleep
It's safe to say that I'm gonna get my payback
If he's anything like me

He's gonna love me
And hate me along the way
The years are gonna fly by
And I already dread the day

He's gonna hug his mama, he's gonna shake my hand
He's gonna act like he can't wait to leave
But as he drives out he'll cry his eyes out
If he's anything like me

There's worst folks to be like, oh, he'll be alright
If he's anything like me
The male-version of me :)

*Note-No, we did not name our baby after Brad Paisley. :)

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What I've learned since becoming a Mother

The moment I heard the first scream come out of my sons lungs, my life was forever changed.  Along the journey of becoming pregnant, I read a few books, cruised a few webpages, and spoke to other Moms about having a baby.  Inevitably, there are things that no one tells you.  There are things you simply must learn as you go.  Here are a few of the things I've learned in the past 7 weeks 5 days;

1.  You can and will spend entire days doing nothing but staring into the face of your child.  And that's ok. 

2.  People say "Sleep when the baby sleeps."  Sometimes that's possible, sometimes you've got to get up and do laundry. 

3.  Sleep deprivation is a real thing....and it makes you a little crazy.  And forgetful. 

4.  2 A.M. is a little lonely, but also very peaceful.

5.  When you try to think of a lullaby to sing, they all escape you.  It's alright to substitute popular hits from the 80's and 90's.

6.  If you have a boy, when changing his diaper, point his penis down.

7.  Poop can be projectile...as in it can clear a 2-3 foot distance.  This is normal (so they say).

8.  Getting pooped or peed on isn't ideal but when it's your own kid, it isn't a big deal.

9.  You're suddenly more concerned with where people's hands have been prior to touching your baby.  Buy hand sanitizer.

10.  Everyone loves a baby!  Men, Women, and teenagers will talk to you about your baby from the cashier at Target to the Sandwich artist at Subway. 

11.  Those sweet little toothless, all gum smiles will make your eyes fill with tears and heart skip a beat. 

12.   You will be hormonal.  Sometimes it's because your overwhelmed with love, sometimes it's because there isn't any apple juice left in the fridge. 

13.  The sound of him breathing is better than any song on your IPOD.

14.  His hands may be tiny but they have a hold of your entire heart.

15.  Sometimes the baby is going to cry and NOTHING will quiet him.

16.  He may be tiny, but he can scream louder than a grown woman.

17.  Some babies do not like pacifiers.

18.  You may take 576456 pictures of him that you won't ever print off.  Take them anyway.

19.  Your heavy right foot just got a little lighter on the pedal.

20.  You will probably go overboard when packing the diaper bag....8 extra onesie's and 12 back up diapers for a trip to the grocery is a little overkill.  But, better to be over prepared than under...

21.  You can still do the activities you and your spouse love (camping, traveling, etc.) but they just take a little more planning these days.

22.  He may have a ton of cute clothes, but somedays he just wants to sport a diaper.

23.  You thought adult socks disappeared in the dryer, wait until you dry infant socks.

24.  The 9 months of pregnancy didn't exactly fly by....but the first 7 weeks of life sure do. 

25.  You never understood why parents told their childs age in weeks instead of months.  Now you understand.

26.  You know that no one is perfect...but your own child is pretty darn close.

27.  That tiny little c-section scar makes you smile.

28.  Your life didn't feel like you were missing anything pre-baby....but now you just feel....complete.

29.  You may have thought you couldn't love your spouse any more.  You were wrong. 

30.  They say the moment you hold your baby you forget all the pain and tears it took to get him here.  This is true.

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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Our Happy Little Camper

Some probably thought the idea was a little crazy...I mean how many people take their 6 week old camping?  Pre-Paisley, Scott and I made a promise to one another that just because we were becoming parents did not mean we had to stop going on adventures and experiencing life in various ways. 

With our favorite time of the year upon us, Scott and I decided there was no time like the present to introduce Paisley to the great outdoors.  Packing to take an infant camping was a little more time consuming than if just Scott and I were going, but the end results were completely worth it. 

Our biggest dilemma was where P would sleep.  Scott and I have spent the last couple of years camping under his camper shell on a mattress, but we couldn't just let P curl up next to us.  We experimented with putting him in a large shoe box, a plastic tote (without the lid obviously), and finally figured we would take the top portion of his bassinet and let him sleep in that beside us on the mattress.  Problem solved.  Scott also picked up a small heater that we could put under the camper shell to help keep our little dumpling warm.  With plenty of diapers, wipes and his cold weather  bear suit, we were ready. 

Our camping companions for the trip were his Nana & Papaw (my parents) and our fantastic friends Kenneth and Michelle.  They were all warned pre-trip that there was a chance P would be an unhappy camper and cry the entire time.  With an infant, you just never know.  They were all up for the challenge.
The first evening, we gathered around the fire, roasted s'mores, and listened to the leaves rustle around us.  The park wasn't crowded at all and we were able to hear every sound Mother Nature played on her sound track.   Paisley took in the change of scenery and enjoyed curling up on his Nana's lap.  The temperature dipped but the chilly night air was welcomed.

As our party of 3 climbed into Tacoma Hotel, we were nervous how P would sleep.  Our worry was in vain as that baby slept better than he had ever slept.  Scott would wake up and put his ear to P's mouth just to make sure the little guy was still breathing.  Changing a dirty diaper under the camper shell by the light of a headlamp wasn't ideal, but it worked and I didn't even get pee'd on. 

On Saturday morning, Paisley was happy to spend the morning snuggling with his grandparents.  Breakfast was made and while 1/2 the group hit the mountain bike trails, we took P for a walk/stroller ride.  The sun was out, the sky was blue, and it was the perfect temp for polar fleece.  It really doesn't get much better than that.  Mom made coffee which was the icing on the cake.

Campgrounds are so peaceful.  Paisley stared up into the sky and happily coo'd as the trees swayed with the wind.  For dinner the boy smoked ribs and Scott made a peach cobbler in the dutch oven.  Funny how food always tastes better when cooked and served in the great outdoors.  We happily surrounded the campfire and talked about how stuffed we were as the moon peeked down at us from above the trees.

The second night wasn't quite as smooth as the first night.  Maybe it was because Paisley was having such a good time camping or maybe he just wanted his Papaw to hold him, but come 3AM Paisley was WIDE awake.  Scott and I took turns shooshing and patting his bottom.  We watched the sun come up together as a family which was nice but I don't want it to become a habit.  It made for an early morning but if I'm going to be up that early, there is not two other people I would rather be with.

After another fantastic breakfast under a beautiful sky, we packed our belongings to head home.  Will we take Paisley camping again? Absolutely!  We already talked about getting out at least one more time before winter wraps it's fingers around us.  Would we recommend camping with a newborn to another set of first time parents? Yes!  With a few things to keep in mind....

1.  The trip won't be perfect!  Be prepared for the little one to have a meltdown.  It may or not happen, but knowing that it could helps.
2.  Take a flashlight!  We had completely forgotten any sort of light and changing his diaper in the dark was going to be tricky.  Luckily Papaw had a spare light that made diaper changing smoother! 
3.  Pack extra diapers and wipes.  We didn't have a blow out, but we were prepared just in case.
4.  Bundle up that baby!  His little blue bear suit kept him snuggly warm.
5.  Be prepared for bugs!  Scott bought an infant mosquito net from Campmor to put over his car seat/stroller.  The bugs weren't bad at all, but if they would have been, we were prepared.
6.  Take extra hands! Scott and I would have went camping with just the 3 of us, but it was so much easier having extra hands to help hold Paisley and give the parents a little break (Thanks everyone!).

Until our next adventure...

Happy Campers

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