I'm going to do this post in a bulleted format because simply too much has been going on and if I write about all of it I'll bore myself and you. So, here goes!
- Millie's first tooth (her bottom left) broke through on February 5th. This helps explain the terrible sleeping and overall crankiness that is atypical for her.
- The night before Valentine's Day, David took Millie and me to a local chinese restaurant. I only bring this up because of how cute my baby looked that evening and because I have proof of her cuteness...
- David and I went to see "Avatar" on Valentine's Day, but it was sold out so we saw the movie "Valentine's Day" instead. It's a rental. We finally saw "Avatar" yesterday in 3D and it was good - the animation (especially in 3D) is incredible. Here's Amelia and David on Valentine's Day...
- David bought Amelia a Sophie the Giraffe teething toy as a Valentine's Day gift. He also made her a card by drawing hearts and writing "Happy Valentine's Day" on a piece of folded cardstock. He's not an artist but I hope he does that for her every Valentine's Day - it's pretty special.
- The weather here lately has been incredible. Mid 50s to lower 60s and beautiful blue skies. On Friday we took Amelia to the park right up the street. David thought I was a little crazy for wanting to take her on the slide and swings, but we did it and I think she liked it, even if her face doesn't show it!
Our plum tree is really going crazy right now, blooming really early. So I couldn't resist getting a couple of pictures of Amelia with it.
- I thought I had more to say but apparently my memory is short. Wait, I already knew that. This is why I need to post often. Otherwise I forget what I want to say. Oh, I'm annoyed that the Olympics air live on the east coast and we get a 3 hour time delay even though they are taking place just a couple of hours north of here.
- Here's a cute video I took of Amelia (far right) with her cousins Kate (middle) and Anna (far left) last time we were in Oregon at the end of January. My sister, Lindsay, is the one with the blanket.
Busy week this week, but hopefully I'll post more often now. Obviously if I wait then I forget everything.
I've moved around a lot. I've lived in Oklahoma, Michigan, North Carolina, Oregon, Florida, Illinois, and Washington.
When I was 21, I moved to the Chicago area for no other reason than to be roomies with a good friend from college. I had no job, little money, and a little Saturn car that somehow made the road trip from Oregon to Illinois. I stayed in the Chicago area for 2 1/2 years which surprised me since I was extremely homesick the entire time I was there. I finally sold my furniture and my little Saturn and moved home to Oregon in the fall of 2004.
Christmas 2005, 5 months after we met
A month in to job searching I got a call from a recruiter who worked for the same company I had just left in Chicago. She wanted to know if I would be interested in doing the same thing I had been doing in Chicago, only I would be doing it in Seattle. I hesitated. I just got home after being away from home since my freshman year of college and I really didn't want to leave. But, I wasn't really sure of where to go next and since this position was just a temporary fill-in for a girl going on maternity leave, I agreed. I packed up again and headed north, this time in my parents' Toyota Avalon. I stayed with friends of a friend for the first month or so, then moved in to an Extended Stay hotel. I missed home (and having a stove) and would drive the 3 1/2 hours to Portland every single weekend.
February 2006, Kerry Park in Seattle
The temporary job ended up becoming permanent when the girl decided not to come back from maternity leave. I was happy to have a more stable income and health benefits, but I realized when I accepted the job that I was, for now, "stuck" living away from home again. I missed my family and I missed my nephew who was 1 at the time. I moved in to a more permanent housing situation but still drove home almost every weekend. I still didn't know hardly anyone up here and on the weekends I did stay, I would go for runs and veg on the couch.
Us on our honeymoon in Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Finally, I decided I could at least use some company to show me around the city. I got a Match.com account and was amazed at the response. Apparently, if you were a woman with a Match account you got bombarded. I did. I don't even remember how many email responses I got but it must have been between 30-40 every couple of days. I didn't want to take all of the effort it took to write each person back. The majority of the emails went straight to my "deleted" items, while few were responded to and others loitered around in my Inbox until I decided if I wanted to respond or not. I went on dates with 2 guys from the site but both fizzled out after a couple of months. One of the emails that loitered in my Inbox was from a guy who sounded very well-spoken and sweet, but his photo was from far away and from the waist up, which made him look short and scrawny. I left his email in my Inbox because it was one of the few that wasn't creepy or over-the-top...just very low key and sweet. I never got around to responding.
Us in San Diego, March 2007
Six months later, I had a friend named Mary who I knew from church camp when I was a teenager. She was getting married and invited me to her bridal shower. She and I went to church together and she told me a couple of times about a guy named David who had just gotten out of a long relationship but she thought we would get along so she wanted me to meet him. People had often tried to set me up before and either it was a disaster or it never happened. I smiled and nodded at Mary but never said much about David. Mary pointed David's sister out to me at her bridal shower. She was taking pictures and I thought she was pretty. Apparently, she and Mary were working together to get David and me to meet. I found out later that she showed David the pictures she took of me and he nodded and smiled at her the same way I did at Mary.
Us. Wrigley Field, May 2008
Fast forward a couple of weeks and it's Mary's last Sunday at church before she moves to another state with her soon-to-be husband. David, his sister, and his sister's husband come to our congregation to see Mary for the last time and so that David and I can meet. I have no idea that they're going to be there. I had been at an air show the day before and was tomato red from a sunburn. I remember he got up during services (which he never does) to use the restroom and he passed by me. I remember thinking how cute he was and that I wanted to meet him. I didn't know it was the David that everyone kept telling me about. We went to lunch at a Mexican restaurant and his family jokes about the fact that David's sister practically interviewed me the entire time. David thought it would be cheesy to ask for my phone number at that time, and he knew he would see me at Mary's wedding the following Saturday so we parted ways.
I called my Mom before I got out of the parking lot and told her I had met a really cute Christian guy.
This will get a lot longer if I keep giving every single detail so I'll summarize.
Us on our 1 year anniversary trip to New England, October 2007
He asked for, and got, my phone number at Mary's wedding. We hung out as friends for a couple of months while I dragged my feet to commit and he tried very hard to win me over. I was an idiot, but I finally wised up. I think it was because I knew that when he and I got together, that was it...he was my forever. That, and I was dating someone else at the time. I dropped him like a hot potato once I actually made up my mind and the rest, as they say, is history.
Oh, and it was him. The email from the really nice "short, scrawny" guy. It was David (all 6'3" and 190 lbs of him). He was fresh out of a long relationship and decided to try the online dating thing. He emailed a total of 2 girls on Match and one of them was me. I guess God decided we deserved a second shot. I'm sooo glad.
He proposed on Tax Day, ironically enough (he's in Finance). He did it surrounded by my parents, sisters, and their husbands. It was perfect. Here's a picture right after I said "yes".
We were married October 2006 at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club - the same place Tiger Woods won his unprecedented 3rd consecutive Amateur title. I used to be proud of that fun fact regarding our wedding site.
We had a beautiful, gorgeous wedding. My mom worked so hard to make every detail perfect and I love her for that, especially since I was still living 3 hours from my wedding site. It was all wonderful. Every single thing. I know my neck is funky in this picture but I love our expressions because it shows how happy and excited we are to be getting married.
I've been wanting to try making cake balls for a while. David asked if I would mind making them for him to take to work on Wednesday (staff meeting). I agreed.
Do you remember in grade school when you were handed a sheet of paper that told you to write this, color that, etc, then at the bottom of the paper it said "Do nothing on this page". The point being that you should read instructions in their entirety before acting. I was one of the kids that slammed my head into the desk when I finally got finished following all of the instructions on the page only to realize I shouldn't have done any of it.
I got started on the cake balls too late because I hadn't read the instructions which said that they needed to be refrigerated or frozen for several hours.
I made the cake and let it cool. I crumbled the cake, added the frosting (of which I only had regular vanilla, not cream cheese frosting as the recipe called for), then formed the balls. I made them a lot larger than the recipe indicated because I didn't want to be forever rolling cake balls and it was already 8:30pm. I was later really thankful for this decision because just the couple of dozen I rolled took so much time (and chocolate) to dip.
I stuck the cake balls in the freezer but finally pulled them out after about 2 hours. I couldn't wait any longer. I was getting really tired and I knew I wouldn't want to wake up at 5am to get the balls dipped and out the door with David by 6:30. Well, they weren't frozen enough.
They looked awful. I tried to cover up their awfulness with some chocolate drizzle but nothing could save them. David took them to work anyway. Someone asked if they were store-bought...maybe he saw them from 30 feet away.
Lesson learned : I'm not a dipper. I am not a fan of dipping. Things I try to dip always turn out badly. Maybe I should just practice more.
I'll leave you with a few cute pictures of my baby. She cut her first tooth last Friday...her bottom right one. The last few nights she's slept in 7 hour stretches which gives me renewed hope. She's babbling a lot more, too.
The first one is Amelia with David's mom. She was sweet enough to offer to come over and play with Millie so I could get some bows made. She must have worn Amelia out because Millie slept for 2 1/2 hours after Grandma left!
I took these two tonight. She doesn't really look like herself in the first one, but I love the big open-mouthed smile.
Tomorrow night/Friday morning I will share with you David's and my love story. It's a good one. At least to me it is!
I pulled this book from Amelia's collection the other day to read it to her.
The illustrations are really nicely done...
I found out that the book has very few words, just pictures. That's fine, I like making up my own words to the story.
If only the story wasn't about a completely irresponsible mother, who, in the real world, would have been arrested for child neglect and abandonment.
Um, lady? Carl is your dog. Or maybe the voices in your head told you that he's a human being, capable of caring for your infant. I mean, I normally throw Amelia in a fish tank to see how she swims, too. Totally normal.
"Better job than I could have done, Carl, especially when I'm not on my meds."
Millie celebrated her first day being 7 months old by going to the pediatrician. Then, she thought it would be fun to get a diagnosis of Croup today, too.
I highly doubt she is having a blast.
I crawled into bed last night/this morning around 1:30am. I don't usually stay up that late but I had things to do on the computer. Important things like write a blog.
At 1:38, I kid you not, Amelia woke up. At first I didn't know what I was hearing. It sounded like someone had parked Sea World in the middle of my living room. My daughter was barking every time she sucked in to take another breath, and it sounded painful. I rushed in there to nurse her and unfortunately had to change her diaper, too. I really am not a fan of middle-of-the-night diaper changes. One of two things happen: Either I change her diaper prior to feeding her or I wait until after she's been fed to change her. With the former option, she cries because she's hungry and her screams wake up David, and with the latter option she manages to wake up completely and is sometimes harder to get back to sleep. Last night she started crying while I was changing her after she had been fed, and since she was barking so badly it woke up David. He really was worried and asked me to call the pediatrician in the morning.
So, I did and they said they'd like to see her.
It was pouring outside and my gas tank was inching closer and closer to "E". I don't like to get that close to empty, but I don't drive my car all that often so I frequently forget where my gas gauge lies.
I decided to take the freeway, figuring it would take less time even though the backroads are more direct. I was already running late. Right outside my neighborhood the "low fuel" light came on. I get good gas mileage so I wasn't too concerned. I made it to the pediatrician's office only 5 minutes late, but wasn't called back until after 10 minutes of waiting.
Her oxygen levels were good. Whew.
She was diagnosed with croup and offered a steroid shot to open her passageways. Steroid shot? My baby? No, thanks. We were told she is contagious and would take 7-10 days to fully recover. I need to watch her to make sure she doesn't run a fever or start to have trouble breathing. Having a sick baby is absolutely no fun...it's so hard to have her feeling crummy and not be able to tell me what's wrong. Even if she could, I can't fix it.
She fell asleep on the way home and I decide to take the back roads. It's like I was being punished - I hit every. single. red. light. I'm not kidding. Every one. The needle on my gas gauge inched closer and closer to the dreaded "E" and I tried to coast down hills when I could. The back roads only have one gas station and it's Arco...I mentally block it out.
I made it home.
David got home tonight and he sounds awful. He's getting sick, too. I guess it was inevitable.
Right before her bedtime, we ran a hot bath and sat in the bathroom with Amelia for several minutes, hoping the steam would help her breathe. She would NOT sleep tonight. I couldn't nurse her, rock her, sing to her, sway with her...nothing worked. Several minutes into my efforts, we decided to take her outside and hopefully let the frigid air do its work on her croup. She stopped crying as the scenery changed and really any time David held her. He wasn't the evil person trying to get her to sleep. We brought her inside and I kept trying. She cried really hard and the barking started again so finally after an hour and a half of fighting her, I gave up. She played happily on the floor in the living room until she pooped. After that, I successfully nursed her and rocked her to sleep at 10pm.
Beverley has been my twin's bff (sorry - just using the lingo that was used when they became friends) since middle school, and also a friend of mine. She has a beautiful daughter named Lucy who recently turned one. Bev offered to take some photos of her baby, my baby, and my sisters' babies all wearing some of the bows I've made.
She did a fantastic job.
Seriously, I feel like my bows don't live up to the photos taken of them! Hey, at least they're perched on some seriously cute little heads. And, the good news is that I'm getting better at my bow-making skills, which helps David to know when I'm buying out my supplier's entire stock of ribbon.
Did I mention I will soon have 1.5" crochet headbands in a variety of colors in stock? I will. I'm so excited. Nylon headbands, too, in pink and in white.
There are so many cute photos, but I guess you'll have to go to my Etsy shop to see them. Or become a Facebook fan. I do want to show you this one of Kate, not only because she's adorable, but because she's sporting my new ladybug clippie.
Okay, enough shamless plugging.
While I'm on the subject of talented friends, I have another friend who dyes and spins her own yarn and makes absolutely gorgeous items. Her Etsy shop is called Neauveau Fiber Arts and Supplies. She offers free shipping on everything! Here's my favorite item in her store...a Snow Bunny handknit baby's hat.
My baby is 7 months old today (Wednesday). 7 months. I wrote about her milestones in my previous post so I guess there's no use in posting them again. I'm so proud of her, though. I can't get enough of her. She still isn't feeling well which makes me sad. But, except for the gurgly nose and cough you wouldn't know it - she's still happy and playful. A bit clingy and hasn't been napping well but that's to be expected.
You know how I posted about our PC being in our bedroom? My husband is currently snoozing away and I'm still up trying to get the pictures uploaded to Etsy ASAP. I'm going to wait until tomorrow to load them onto Facebook.
Oh, one more thing. I was in a rush to get out the door and to my sister's house last Saturday when Bev was going to meet us to take the photos that I didn't change Amelia out of her recently green bean stained shirt. I thought the shirt she was wearing over it would cover it, but it turns out she didn't wear that shirt the whole time. Thus, the trailer trash look. Not my most shining motherhood moment. Ah, well. What's a baby without a stain on her shirt?
Amelia and I are both sick. Congested sinuses, runny nose, occasional cough. Thanks to David I slept like a drugged baby last night (on Nyquil) and he got up with the baby the 3 times she woke up to eat. I actually got up once (maybe twice - who knows, it was all a drug-induced blur) to nurse her back to sleep.
Sleep, tonight, is just not happening.
Ways David and I have tried to get her to sleep tonight:
- Rocking her (arches her back and squirms and screams)
- Nursing her (see above)
- Feeding her via a bottle (takes a few sips then...see above)
- Laying her in her crib, awake (no way. Silly us)
- Getting out the swing and putting her in it (played with the toys on it for a few minutes then...see above)
- Giving her some Benadryl (for her nose, not to get her to sleep)
So, right now she's laying on our bed playing with the case for the thermometer. Happy as a stinking lark. Usually she'd let me nurse her and/or rock her to sleep but she's not having anything to do with sleep tonight.
Recent milestones she has hit:
- She now says "Dada" on a regular basis. Everything is "dada", so I don't know that it counts as a first word, but she'll usually say it when prompted which means David definitely thinks it is her first word. Either way, it's the cutest sound in the entire world.
- She screams. I don't mean crying, I mean she just screams/screeches at the top of her voice just because she can. I'm sure that will eventually get annoying, but for now it's the second cutest sound in the entire world.
- She's army-crawling. She has never gotten on her hands and knees and rocked back and forth, but she gets where she wants to go by using her elbows and dragging the rest of her body along with her. She'll move her legs, too, but more like a frog so I don't think they help her much. But, she can get across a room!
- She's done it for a week or two (maybe more), but I've noticed that not everything goes directly in her mouth anymore. First she shakes it as hard as she can and if she has an object in her other hand, she bangs both objects together several times. Then it goes in her mouth. It's really neat to see her coordination get better.
- She coughs because we react. She'll cough once and either David will say "Bless you!" or I'll just exclaim "Oh!" so she'll cough again and smile/laugh at our reactions. She does this 3 or 4 times before getting bored with us.
I have spent some time reading previous posts I wrote before and directly following Amelia's birth. I love those posts, mainly because I have forgotten a lot already and it's fun to look back and read some of those things.
Well, David is waiting on me to try once again to nurse Amelia and hopefully get her to sleep.
We had a fun weekend in Oregon. I did a lot of baking with my mom for a shower she co-hosted with another lady from church for a girl who is having triplets. I was really looking forward to going to the shower but that's right after Amelia and I got sick. My friend, Bev, graciously offered to take some photos of her baby, Lucy, and my sisters' babies and Amelia with some of my bows in their hair. I should get those photos soon so I'll share them as soon as I do. Thanks, Bev!