Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year (almost)

I've taken a bit of a holiday (pun intended) from blogging. But, then I received a text message from one of my (three) readers saying, "blog already" and it took me out of my holiday coma and prompted me to down load some photos and document the season.

So, I'll make this recap as quick as possible by using photos and bullet points:
- Our nanny is leaving, so we have spent our holiday break looking for a replacement
- We decorated the house for the holidays, it looks festive, but in actuality, I wasn't in the spirit until Christmas eve
- My wonderful friend, Ashley, was in town for the week leading up to Christmas. It was good to see and spend time with her and her family
- Natalie had three holiday dresses, so her celebration began the day before Christmas eve when she wore the first one. The best part - for all three, I only paid a total of about $35.
- We scaled back this year. We got old toys from my mother, which Natalie loves, and bought her a rocking horse which was a big hit! Everyone else got smaller gifts too...no need to spend money when we have so much to be grateful for already.
- I still have presents to hand out to friends I haven't seen
- We are excited to ring in the new year and are looking forward to the changes it will bring
Starting to open gifts
playing with the tupperware drawer on Christmas morning ~
this is the first time she actually climbed in
Christmas hat from Auntie Laura
Red holiday sweater

Tonight we are thinking about braving the cold temperatures to go to 3ve (a three-day new years eve celebration). God Father is playing with Rattle and Hum and because Natalie loves music, we think it is only right to let her ring in the New Year with dancing.

Happy New Year to you and yours. May 2010 bring good health and happiness to your life.

Friday, December 18, 2009

What a difference a year makes

This time last year I was holding a new born (well, a 4 week old) and trying to squeeze into a skirt to rush to Phil's holiday party. This time last year, I was leaving my baby for the second time in her life. This time last year, I was thinking being a mom was an easy gig. This time last year I was getting sleep, longing around in the mornings and spending my days running errands.

A lot has changed...
This year I was chasing my 13-month-old around the house, while slipping into my dress and trying to get to the party on time. This year, my big girl waved goodbye to me (one thing that didn't change - same baby sitter, G-ma and G-pa). This year, I am thinking being a mom is still pretty easy - but there are days... This year, I'm not getting as much sleep, I'm not lounging around in the mornings, and spend my days in an office.

A lot has changed...but I wouldn't trade it for anything

Friday, December 11, 2009

Choices

Because of my aforementioned weight loss and an impending holiday party that is hosted by hubby's work, I needed a new outfit. True to form, I couldn't decide in the store. So I bought three dresses, a shirt and a pair of snazzy heels. The shirt is out because after the fashion show I hosted, it was decided that it was "not holidayish" (if that is even a word). The shoes are more "work" wear, even though Phil said, "You would wear heels that high to work?"
So, back to the dresses. The last dress I bought, the cheapest one, was more "motherly" - if an off the shoulder short black could be "motherly", so it is going back. The decision now comes down to two...a form fitting (read-tight) black number

and a silver strapless stunner

I think I'm leaning towards the silver one - more holidayish, but I'm going to wait and make the decision tonight when I'm ready with shaved legs, washed hair and make up on. I'll update with a photo of the winner later.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Two things

First thing is that we are now the proud owners of a new heater and air conditioner...which is supposed to keep us comfortably warm all winter and cool all summer. For the money we paid, it better. I won't shock you with the total price tag, but if you want an idea, take what amount you are thinking it would cost and double it and you might be close. I almost fell off the couch when he told us the total price tag.

Second thing is so wonderful I barely have the words to explain, but because this is a blog, I'll try. You might be thinking, "Oh she found the cure for cancer" or "She must have solved the crisis in the middle east", but no...I have kicked those pregnancy pounds and then some to the curb. I don't know how it has happened, maybe a combo of lack of sleep, breastfeeding, and forgetting to eat? Any way, I'm just excited to report that while at the mall last night trying to find an outfit for a holiday party on Friday I tried and purchased dresses that are half the size I used to wear! It is very exciting and when I actually decide what dress I'll be wearing I'll take a picture for the blog.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

12 months have come and gone...

This is a long overdue post…but better late than never.

A few weeks ago we went to the doctor for Natalie’s 12-month check up. We found out that she is healthy and growing (but not too fast). She is still a string bean, a touch over 29 inches (40 something% on the growth chart) and 17 pounds 12 ounces (4% on the chart). For those tracking her growth, she has grown two inches since her last appointment (9 month), but has only gained a little more than a pound…which means we are now free to pump her full of calories. The doctor instructed us to put butter on everything and put cream in her whole milk, seriously.

Basically the doctor said that because Natalie isn’t totally interested in eating (she just wants to walk all over and see what she shouldn’t touch) that we should try and make each bite as highly caloric as possible. So add the fat we have. The only problem is the extra fat hasn’t sparked Natalie to eat it all up. I’m not worried any more, I’ve thought it over and she is very happy and healthy (I mean, hello, she hasn’t ever been sick – knock on wood). We will keep offering and if she won’t accept we will just keep offering.

The other instruction given to us by the doctor was concerning sleep and eating at night. Because Natalie normally nurses to sleep, the doctor said this means she doesn’t know how to fall asleep on her own so we need to “teach” (train) her how to do this, which she suggested we do by letting her cry-it-out. (I feel bad just typing those words…) She said that if Natalie knew how to put herself to sleep that if she woke up in the middle of the night she would just put herself back to sleep without us. So, we figured that 1. Natalie already falls asleep on her own for naps, so doing it at bedtime wouldn’t be that hard and 2. If she cried, it wouldn’t be that bad…well we were wrong, on both accounts.

When Natalie was born we decided that we didn’t want to be the cry it out parents unless we had to, we figured (at the suggestion of my mother) that comforting her and going to her when she cried would help to build a happy, healthy and secure child (I mean it worked for me). So far, we have been on this path – and other than a few nights of almost crying it out, we hadn’t done it. So the Tuesday before Thanksgiving we decided to see if Phil could put Natalie down without letting her cry. It didn’t work, it was horrible, she cried and cried and so we decided that we would change the bedtime routine a little, but stick with me nursing her to sleep.

Our new bedtime routine involves Phil giving Natalie her bath and getting her totally ready for sleep without me. Then, he passes her to me, kisses her goodnight; I feed her and put her down. Because the doctor suggested that we stop letting Natalie eat at night, we also decided that if she woke up in the night that Phil would be the one to get up with her and see if he can put her down. If he couldn’t then we would cave and I would feed her and she would either sleep with us or go back in her crib for the rest of the night. So far, this is working. She has been waking up more than normal lately, but not needing to eat.

The other part of this story involves weaning. It was always my plan to nurse Natalie until she was 1 and then wean her over the holidays (and by wean I mean, let her wean naturally with a gently little nudge). Well, the whole feeding to bed might extend the nursing for a while, who knows. I’m along for the ride and hope that it isn’t a ride that goes on longer than expected. I’m hoping that my mom is right when she says that it will just happen and it will be quicker than expected and not to really worry about it. Easier said than done, but I guess she has been here and done this before (three times).

So, there, that is my update on Natalie. Now that I have all that updating done I’ll be able to update you on the new outfits Natalie has, our holiday plans (which might involve a trip to somewhere sunny), painting projects, holiday decorating, and anything extra that is going on in our lives. For now, I'll leave you with the below. We are teaching Natalie Bulgarian, in this video she is being asked "where are your shoes"...she is brilliant

video