Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Maddy Month by Month - 5 Months

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Monday, June 29, 2009

Sweet Taters!!

Things have been pretty hectic in our neck of the woods.... It seems like as soon as we get home, it's nearly bedtime for the munchkin and then bedtime for Mama, since the munchkin still hasn't figured out how to sleep through the night. Such is life with a baby... and since she's our little miracle, I'm not complainin'.

Work has been fantastic, but very, very busy. So, when I'd normally take time to eat (and write a blog) during my lunch hour, I'm on the phone and muting myself so they don't hear the crunch, cruch, cruch of my lunch. Which is no biggie, but the blog has fallen to the wayside.

In the last two weeks, as you saw in the video, we introduced cereal. I'm tickled to say she's up to three foods! Cereal, Sweet Potatoes and Bananas - all of which she loves! We haven't decided what our next will be - so I think we'll hang with these three for a week or so.

We're looking forward to the Fourth of July holiday. Not only does Mama have a day off, but Nana will be here to visit us! We haven't seen her since March, so we're really, really looking forward to her visit. And we're hoping the weather holds and we'll get to let Miss M wear the VERY cute swimsuit that Gigi sent to us (thank you Gigi!!!!!!) It might be her first toe dip into the lake.

Recently, we did a photoshoot with all fo the cousins (minus the littlest, newest one, since it was too cold out and minus Miss M's older sister, since she's in Louisiana). Daddy took the pictures and they turned out pretty swell. It's a good lookin brood we have.

The pictures in the next post document all of our fun :)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day

My dearest love...

This is not your first Father's Day. You've been an amazing father for years now. But this is the first Father's Day that you are daddy to my little girl. Words cannot do justice to what I feel when I see you with our little girl. There have been times, I know, that you weren't so sure you were up for starting all over again. Having a baby is hard work. You knew that, I didn't.

And every time you love on her, I fall a little deeper in love with you. You are an amazing man with a well of compassion and love that you don't often acknowledge is there.

So...I will speak the words that are in our daughter's eyes when she sees her Daddy...

I love you

And truly....God bless the broken road that lead me straight to you.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Munch Mouth

I have a five month old. A FIVE MONTH OLD! How did that happen!?!?! She's getting so much bigger every day and I'll update with all of the exciting changes since our last little monthly update soon...

But I wanted to share this video of her very first attempt at cereal :)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Holy Roller

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Thankful Thursday

I am most thankful for these two munchkins

So...she wasn't so happy while I was recording this because she thought I was leaving her for the night. But she's cute nonetheless...

And her rolling over...

I wish I could figure out how to embed. I'm doing everything my crafty friend Rebecca has taught me to do, but it only copies part of the code. ::::EDIT NOTE - I finally figured out how to embed and came back to this post to fix it....:::::

And, as usual, please excuse the ridiculous baby talk...my child's grammar is going to be horrible, but I can't help myself.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Tippy Toes!!!

And no...I'm not talking about Seinfeld!

I said she's discovered her toes...but girlfriend can now get them in her mouth!

Last night, I was getting her ready for bed. This is always, always my least favorite time of the day. She reeeeeeeally hates the process and she absolutely knows what it all means and fights it pretty hard. Normal for most kids, but I have read that's even more the case for acid reflux babies. Yea us : We start by warming a bottle and taking it, a binkie, and a blanket in her room so we're all ready. I pick out her jammies and set them with a diaper on her blanket on the floor. Then, she and I run her bath so it's all ready. We get her undressed and undiapered (the part she loves - this kid so loves to be nekkid...) and then into the bath. After the bath, we get dried off (this is the time when she starts crying) and dressed. I used to give her a massage during this time, but after a month I gave up because she does nothing but cry during it. So...now we read a story (right now, she LOVES 8 Little Monkeys (you know...10 little monkeys, jumping on a bed...only with 8 for attention span purposes ;) ). She gets all excited when I do the doctor's voice. Then rocking and bottle and bed.

ANYWAY - last night I was throwing her diaper in the pail and wasn't actually looking at her. When I looked back at her, she had her toes in her mouth. I started to pick her up before I realized, "Holy crap, my child has her foot in her mouth - this is a first!!!" I promptly set her back down, buckled her down, and ran for the camera. Yes, I left my buckled child on the changing table. Please don't call CPS on me. I'll post pictures when I get around to downloading them.

In the last week, our munchkin has also figured out how to pull on her toys in order to make them "sing"/play music all on her own. It's adorable - it's like she's finally figured out that SHE can do what I've been doing for her for months!

She's also starting to put her own binkie in her mouth (if it's easily accessible)....she'll either reach for it with her hand OR (even cuter) if she's in bed, she'll scoot her head till she can wrangle her mouth around to grab it. She's clunky about it...but she's getting it done.

And - now that she turns over, she's waking herself up ALOT. She'll turn herself over in her sleep, wake up and not understand where she's at or what to do and start crying. I figured this out at naptime on Sunday.

I'd put her down fast asleep in her crib. 15 minutes later, I wanted to put her baby monitor in her room. I snuck in, quiet as a mouse, and as I was sneaking out, I heard her peep. I stood still, looked over at her crib and she was on her tummy, arms under her, arching her back and head peering out over the crib side. The minute she saw that I saw her - game over (and nap over).

I wanted to be frustrated, but how can you get frustrated when your baby is being cute and grinning at you.

Oh yeah, she's got me wrapped and she knows it.... Maddy 1, Mama 0

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Thankful Thursday

So a girlfriend of mine does a weekly post called Thankful Thursday...and it occurred to me that I haven't voiced what I'm thankful for lately.

Bear with me...the story has a point.

I've been a little down the last couple of weeks. I'm having a really hard time getting used to only seeing Madelyn awake and happy for an hour or two a day. Her poor little tummy causes her to be pretty cranky some days and by the time I get home, I've got an hour or so before I start the whole routine of putting her to bed. She's figured out what certain actions mean and she's not so hip on bedtime every night. She loves her bath, but she knows once bath time is over, we're going to start getting ready for bed and she fights it pretty good. Add into that the fact that most babies aren't so happy in the early evening anyway (my friend Kim calls it the witching hours - from 5 to 8 pm) and I don't get to see a lot of my happy, laughing baby.

Jim's work schedule has been crazy for the last two weeks and he has the same run next week so we have maybe half an hour of face time in the morning and half an hour in the evening. During that time, one of us is generally feeding Madelyn while the other is trying to get ready for work. Not exactly quality couple time. Heck, it's not even family time. It's rush time.

So, I've been feeling sorry for myself. Not liking the situation and just generally feeling down.

But last night was different.

Maddy was happy (yea!) and that allowed me to play with her *and* get some stuff done around the house. Granted, it wasn't much, but getting anything done feels like an accomplishment. Madelyn loves it when we dance, so while we were upstairs, I put on Carrie Underwood and danced with my baby to "All American Girl". While I was dancing with her, I was listening to the lyrics and overwhelmed at just how much I love this little person, how very precious she is to me....my little All American Girl. Despite the sleep deprivation, challenges of being the only one on baby duty all night long, tummy troubles and fussy babies, just how very, very blessed I am to have her.

So - today....

I'm thankful I have a job. It allows me to provide for my daughter, even though I'm away from her more than I would like.

And I'm thankful I have a husband with a steady job. If I were to loose mine, he would continue to provide for us and we'd be okay. Poorer than we'd like, but okay.

I'm thankful that husband is so helpful around the house and has started doing things outside of his comfort zone, like cooking dinner for us.

I'm thankful that husband loves me enough and is caring enough to mend fences when we're being snippy with each other because we're rushed, we're tired, and we are generally grumpy that we're not spending enough time together.

And....I'm so very thankful for my little All American Girl. She is so, so precious to me.

And finally, I'm thankful that God let me know the kind of love I've never known before....that of a husband who wants to build a relationship and a family, despite the challenges, and the love a mother feels for her child. It is both awe inspiring and humbling.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Maddy the Model

Every month or two, I talk my husband into putting up all of our camera equipment, backgrounds, and lightening and doing a photo shoot with our littlest munchkin. It can be a bit trying, because baby's will only model for so long.... So it usually ends up being a two day affair.

Eventually, if we do it often enough, I figure she'll get used to it and we can get it done in less than two days. I'm excited about the nice weather that's here, perhaps we can start taking some "nature" shots with our baby out in the yard.

Below are a few of the latest taken two weeks ago. The rest are at: http://jimandheatherclark.shutterfly.com/babypictures

Love Letter #4

My little tiny munchkin...

This love letter is a little late - and I'm sorry for that - but I've been soaking up every little bit of you I could for the last couple of weeks and haven't spent a ton of time with the computer. I started back to work this week and what an emotional rollercoaster that has been.

On the one hand, it's good. Some day you'll understand what I mean by that. I have a whole new bucket of respect for stay at home moms because it is SO not at all what I thought it'd be like. Having a baby is hard! Even one as cute, cute, cute as you are. You are absolutely, next to your dear old Dad, the person I love most on this planet!!!! However, being that your Dad works nights and I spend a good portion of my day all alone without help, I get lonely for someone who can help me with you... Or at least do the things that need to be done while I play with you. So...being at work is good! I so very thankful for my job, I like my company, and I'm happy to bring in money to help secure the stability of our family.

But being away from my baby is hard, hard, hard. Just look at you! I know I'm biased, but you're simply gorgeous and when you're feeling good, you are the most amazingly happy baby. Daddy is going to have to beat those boys off with a stick. Daddy says when you're 30, but I say you can date when you're 25. This morning, when I was done getting ready and needed to put you in your carseat to go, I spent a few minutes just cuddling you. Daddy had fed your your morning bottle and you'd fallen back asleep snuggled up next to him. Every cell in my body wanted to stay just right there. It brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it because I absolutely hate leaving you. When you smile, you light up the room and I hate that I go all day without you smiling at me.

Some of the changes from your last love letter:

You've started giggling. Honestly giggling!

You love it when I pretend I'm going to eat you up and my hair tickles your face.

You love playing the "kisses, kisses, kisses" game. I come at you and say, "kisses, kisses, kisses!!!" and kiss your little mouth. You giggle and have started to reach up for me with a grin when I start saying "kisses".

You've found your feet!!!! You are grabbing them all the time now and it's so precious.

You've started talking ALOT and I love that sound.

You are SO close to rolling over from your back to your tummy. If you knew what to do with that shoulder, you'd be all over it. Scratch that....I started this blog post and then you went and rolled over for us this weekend!
You are still in love with your Daddy, but you've started to give up Mr. Star. You're much more into your jumper now that you're such a big girl. Mr. Star doesn't make enough noise for you. I'm not saying he's gone to the wayside, he's just not your favorite anymore. You also love your rings for chewing and a crinkle book for the same reason.

You've started to wrap your arm around my neck. Granted, it's just for stability when I'm carrying you around, but I'll take it.

You've *really* started to notice George and you reach out for him now. That is so much fun to watch.

You've also started to recognize that your room is where I put you to sleep - and you cry when we go in there, even in the middle of the day. I chalk that up to you wanting to be in the midst of things at all times (you're so like your Mama in that way). You just don't want to miss anything by going to sleep.

I'm afraid to say it outloud, but you're starting to go down easier at night. You don't necessarily stay down easily, but it's not as hard at night. I don't know if I'm just getting better at being consistent or you're getting better at it. Probably both. You still don't sleep very well, but Dr. Fasullo thinks that's because of your tummy. Some nights are really bad. The night before last you were up all.night.long. Mama got two fourt-five minute naps before having to go to work. I thought I was going to be dead the next day and actually cried at work (in the bathroom...no one saw me, thank gawd).

When I turn you on your tummy, which you don't like much for the afore mentioned tummy trouble reasons, you've started to try and put your knees under you to scoot. Maybe crawling is soon? Lordy me, I hope not just yet!

You still sleep in our room. Before I had you, I thought for sure you'd be in your own room by 3 months. Now I battle deciding when to move you into your own room. I'm so not there yet, I like you sleeping in your little co-sleeper next to me :)

You're starting to notice that Daddy and I eat food that isn't milk. I am holding off introducing any solids till we've got your tummy troubles under better control, but I know that's a sign for starting your baby on solids - that they notice what Mama and Daddy are eating. This is exciting to me and makes me want to cry in the same breath. Solids will be fun! But how is it that my baby is old enough for solids, you're growing up too fast. I know this is the lament of every parent....and it's so true.
And speaking of those tummy troubles - they're still around. Your tummy still hurts you and when you're having a bad day, my heart breaks. We've tried going back to breast milk and that hasn't changed anything. We've tried Zantac, that hasn't helped. We've tried rice cereal in your milk, that did nothing but make the spit way thicker. Dr. Fasullo has us trying Prevacid next...and we're going half breast milk, half Soy formula till we run out of the breastmilk in the freezer, then it'll be all formula. And I'm starting to wean on the pump. Working has made pumping that much harder - because I just don't get as much and anymore, I think it comes between you and I spending quality time together. And that's more imortant to me. Besides, you seem to be happier on Soy.
You're trying to hold your own bottle. You can't do it unless it's empty - but if it's empty, you can hold it. You get excited when you see a bottle, empty or not.
All in all...you're just a bigger girl. Daddy calls you his "big girl", but I remind him you're still a little baby. You may have grown a lot, but you've still only been around for 19 weeks. That's not very long to be saying you're a "big girl". I think I'll be saying you're only a little baby long you actually are a big girl. It's passing too fast for me and it's exciting and sad all in one breath.

Daddy and I took more pictures of you two weeks ago (when you actually were 4 months old) and these are some of those shots:

Is that you, Mama? Whachoo doing down there?

Daddy....What you doing with that thing pointed at me?

Get my feet, Daddy, get my feet!

You woke me up from my nap for this?!?!

Take me to the beach, Mama, I'm ready!