Monday, December 17, 2012

Daddy's girl!

Emersyn's first word!  Of course, she has no idea what she's saying, but it's pretty special nonetheless.

Friday, December 14, 2012

My baby is sleeping peacefully in her crib, and I am praying for the parents whose babies didn't come home from school today.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Dear Emersyn: 7 Months

 Is it just me, or are the months going faster than before?  I was looking at photos the other day of the week we brought you home, and my darling girl, you are growing much too fast for mama's liking.

You got your bottom left tooth Nov 29th, and your bottom right poked through about a week later.  You have been a little fussier than normal, but we've only had to do Tylenol once, so I think your necklace is still working.  This is going to sound very strange, but you get some pretty strong breath on occasion, and I think it might be teething related?

You've always loved to roll, but it was usually just onto your belly and then you were happy.  Now, you have figured out you can keep on rolling to get where you want to be (usually to chew on something you shouldn't have).  So, you've definitely mastered going from your belly to back now, and while it's not crawling, you're definitely more mobile.  This is really making diaper and clothing changes very difficult for mama.  You also show more interest in crawling when you're on your changing pad- you can get your knees up, or your arms going, but haven't figured out how to put them together.

You got to meet lots of daddy's relatives at an anniversary dinner, and you get to spend a lot of time with your great grandparents on his side, who love to come visit you!  We had your first Thanksgiving at mama's aunt and uncle's house, with relatives galore.  You do really well with other people, you're very friendly!  You still love mama and daddy best though- and have added reaching for us to your repertoire.  Love this.

I would venture to say (with extreme caution) that your sleep has improved this past month.  We moved your bedtime from 6:30/7 to 7:30/8 and that slight change has meant less wakups before your 10pm dreamfeed.  You still wake to eat again between 4 and 6am and then sleep until about 7:30am.  And your naps have improved as well!  You take your first nap around 9:30, and sleep for about 1- 1.5 hours.  Your second nap time depends a lot on when you wake from your first, but the length of it is about 45min to and hour.  Then another 20-30 min nap in the evening.  Of course, you still have times you wake up multiple times at night just wanting your paci, and you have days where you refuse to nap longer than 20 min at a time, but overall, this month has been a lot better!

As far as eating, no big change in frequency from last month.  You still eat about every 3-3.5 hours, have a dreamfeed around 10pm, and eat in the night between 4 and 6am.  What has changed is how fidgety you are during feedings.  You eat for about 5-7 min total each feeding, but around the 3 minute mark you start going crazy all over mama.  We start out with you laying on your side, and you literally roll over onto your belly while still attached.  Not cool, kiddo.  This is why I have no desire to drop your dreamfeed- it's the one feed of the day that you are peaceful and still and I love this last sweet time with you.  We've added a few more solids- sweet potatoes, green beans, and carrots, and so far, carrots are your very favorite!

You received a lot of hand me down toys and books from your cousins this month and you are in heaven.  Of course, you mostly like banging on the tub in which they're stored.  Actually, you like anything that makes noise:)

We love you, sweet girl, more and more each day.


Monday, December 3, 2012

Life lately

  • Best news of the year- my dad is cancer free!  He ended up having 4 chemo treatments total, and his scans show no more cancer.  Unfortunately the chemo did a number on his liver, and also on his lungs.  He is now on oxygen nearly 24/7.  He is doing, better, but still having a lot of pain.  Not sure if it's still the effects of the chemo, or if there is something else going on, but for now, prayers have been answered.
  • Every surface of our house we planned to paint has been painted.  We still have some touch ups to do, but we're SO CLOSE to being done.  What all have we painted?  Emersyn's room, including her trim, E's bathroom, the half bathroom, the dining room, the entry way, two hallways, Blake's mancave, Blake's mancave's bathroom, our bedroom, our master bathroom, the kitchen, the breakfast nook, the living room and the family room.  The only things we didn't paint out of a 3,300 sq foot home was one bedroom and the laundry room.  If I ever walk into a house we're looking to buy again and say, oh all it needs is a coat of paint, my husband has permission to smack me.
  • We are hosting Blake's mom's side Christmas, and it has been good to have a deadline for all these house projects.  We still have to get new carpet installed in our living room, our new dining set in and assembled, pictures and curtains hung, etc, but we've been busting our bums to get things done.  Praying it all comes together soon so we can actually relax and enjoy the holidays.
  • I saw a coffee bar on Pinterest before we moved and knew the perfect spot for one in my house.  It's happening, people! Freakishly excited for this one!
  • We got family pics taken by a friend of mine that's a photographer- we've only seen the sneak peeks, but I'm in love with them and am already planning our next shoot.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Unlike my kiddo, I love sleep- Narcolepsy update

I went to the doctor a few weeks ago to establish myself as a new patient and to check in on some things I'm slightly concerned about.

First up, I was so thankful to not experience hardly any of my symptoms of Narcolepsy while I was pregnant, and even for the last few months (which often happens).  I experienced what I would think is "normal" pregnancy tiredness, but honestly, it was NOTHING compared to how I feel when my narcolepsy symptoms are in full swing.  It was just a tired feeling, usually reserved for the evenings, that actually would improve when I would rest, as opposed to the constant fog of narcolepsy with attacks of sleep that are not helped at all by any amount of rest.  When E was brand spankin' new, I would say that level of fogginess was the closest mimic of my narcolepsy symptoms, but I fully attribute that to the lack of sleep any new parent experiences.  There were no sleep attacks, and as she slept for longer periods, I felt more rested too.

Unfortunately, over the last couple of months, even when E gives us pretty good nighttime stretches (it's her daytime sleep that has me frustrated), I can feel my symptoms returning.  There is a difference between being tired and having a narcolepsy attack.  At the start of an attack, my body is still awake, while my brain goes to sleep.  In high school and college I would actually continue to take notes while my brain was asleep (they were completely unreadable), before completely succumbing to the attack.  I can usually feel the episode coming, but there's nothing I can do to stop it.  Then I'll be completely asleep and out of it (usually just for a few minutes for me).

I do have a mild case, thankfully, but there have been several times I've planned to be out of the house that I've had to change my plans because I don't feel like its safe for me to be behind the wheel.  I've also had a few times when I'm holding E and can feel an attack coming so I make sure to place her somewhere safe and ride out the episode.  My narcolepsy was really well controlled with Provigil, so when I went to my check up, I talked with my doctor about going back on the medication.  But, as with many medications, it is not approved for breastfeeding.  I had hoped there would be an alternative medication my doctor felt was safe, but he didn't know of any that was approved for narcolepsy.

So where do I stand?  Right now, I don't plan on any changes.  So far, my symptoms are still fairly mild, and the attacks are few.  I'm thankful I'm at home with E, and have a lot of flexibility in when I leave the house.  If it gets worse, the hubs and I will be discussing if I need to stop breastfeeding and get back on my medication.

Thursday, November 15, 2012


Tonight you wriggled in my arms, turning your face into my body to block out the light of the lamp.  I was reading to you, trying to prolong your wakefulness before letting you sleep, in an effort to extend your sleep time.  But I knew as you did this that you had reached your limit.  I nursed you, as I do every night before bed, and you sighed, knowing that it was finally time to eat and go to sleep.  You latched on, and your eyes slowly closed as you ate.  Your tiny fist reached out, flailing, grabbing at my shirt, at my neck, until your hand found mine.  Your fingers closed around mine and you relaxed.  Just a few minutes of peace, and then I swept you into my arms, resting your head on my shoulder and patting your back.  You lifted your head, groggily smiled at me, and nuzzled into my neck, fast asleep again.

I love you, baby girl.  I cherish these sleepy moments.  I dreamed about you since I was a little girl, and I waited for you for so long, wondering who you would be, having no idea that who I was would change with your arrival.  Thank you for making me a mama.

Dear Emersyn: 6 Months

Well, baby girl, I now understand why they say that each new month with a baby is the new favorite!  Each day brings out more of your personality, and when you're not a fussypants due to teething and sleeping issues, you are SUCH a happy girl!

Up first, sleeping- you wake for the day around 7am, and go down for your first nap at 9am.  This is where your predictability pretty much ends.  You nap off and on through the day, sometimes as short as 10 minutes, occasionally as long as 35 minutes and usually somewhere in between.  You go to bed between 6:45 and 7:15pm, and you often wake up several times before you get your last feed of the day at 10pm.  You were doing pretty well with sleeping from 10pm until between 4 and 6am for another feeding, but here lately you're waking several times during the night.  Mama is sleepy.  Just when I think I've made my peace with how your sleeping is going (even if its not how I would LIKE for it to be), it gets worse.  Not sure where to go from here.

Teething, however, is another story.  This has definitely improved ever since we got your amber teething necklace.  You wear it all the time, except for in the bath, and you are MUCH less fussy.  We very rarely have to give you Tylenol anymore, and while you still love to gnaw on anything you can get in your mouth, you don't seem to be in total meltdown mode anymore!

You have started some solids, though I'm not very consistent in a schedule for these.  So far you've had oatmeal, avocado, banana, squash, and peas.  Our dog, Gus, is suddenly taking quite the interest in you:)  You still nurse about every three hours, and you and I both love your 10pm dreamfeed.  You eat again during the night before you wake for the day.  I really wish you would drop this middle of the night feed, but sometimes its just easier to nurse you again so I can get some sleep.  At your six month appointment you weighed in at 17 lbs 9 oz.  This puts you in the 74th percentile for weight.  You are 25.5 inches long, which only puts you in the 30th percentile for height, but the dr said you could hit a growth spurt and be two inches longer, so it is nothing to worry about.

While you still show no real interest in rolling from your belly to your back, its hard to keep you from rolling onto your belly. This is proving to make diaper changing and dressing you quite the challenge.  In an effort to encourage you to crawl I started putting toys out of your reach, but you quickly figured out that you can just reach them by pulling the blanket they are on toward you.  You look so proud of yourself when you manage this!

Your sitting up skills continue to improve, and you love for me to pull you to your feet from sitting.  Your very favorite thing though, is playing airplane.  The smiles and laughs this produces are priceless. I think you're starting to recognize your name, and I think you also know that I'm "Mama" even though you don't seem interested in actually saying Mama, despite my best efforts.  You are a people person, doing great at the nursery at church, and with any visitors.  Your daddy's grandparents love to visit, and this month you were reunited with your long distance boyfriend, Knox (the son of mama's bff).  

Things you're loving right now: bathtime, your pacis, snuggling with mom and dad, seeing yourself in the mirror or on our cell phone cameras, and anything you can get into your mouth (bonus points if its our cell phones).  You also love music and dancing, your exersaucer in the mornings, and cups.

Obviously we'd still love for your sleeping to improve, but in general, this has been such a wonderful month.  I think teething was a bigger issue than we knew, because your necklace has made such an improvement.  We love you so very much, and can't believe how fast the last six months have gone.


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The search continues...

Well, as soon as I thought things were improving, they went downhill fast.  We were back to 20 minute naps, multiple wake ups at night and a cranky pants baby.  To say I was frustrated would be an understatement.  As I researched sleep, the one consistent thing I was finding (because every expert has different advice) was that adequate daytime sleep was really important for the brain development of baby.  So along with dealing with the fussiness, I was also dealing with some massive mom guilt that my kid was going to flunk out of school because I couldn't figure out how to get her to nap.  Awesome.

The only option we had left was to let her cry it out.  Whole new world of mom guilt.  Seriously, so freaking hard, but we really felt like we had no other option.  I've never been one of the people that believes letting your baby cry it out is mean and cruel and will turn them into serial killers.  It makes sense to me that we have to teach babies lots of things, and teaching them to sleep is probably one of those things.  When I was pregnant, I fully expected to someday pursue this form of sleep training.  However, at 3am, when E is crying, and I'm watching the monitor obsessively, its hard to remember that I believe that and a lot easier to convince myself I'm doing permanent damage.

I made an appointment with the pediatrician, because if I was going to continue on this course, I wanted some reassurance that there wasn't an underlying problem like an ear infection, and I wanted to ask if it was a good plan if/when she was teething, because she was starting to exhibit a lot of the signs of teething.  Thankfully, baby girl is healthy, but the doctor does think she is teething.  She supports cry it out, but also let me know that if E wakes up after 4am (which she does pretty much every night now) that I should go ahead and feed her.  Keep in mind that whenever I've talked about E sleeping through the night and especially during that 2-3 week period that she was sleeping through every night, she was going 9 and 10 hour between feeds, so to hear that my new normal is 6 hours is a little rough, but adjusting my attitude to expect to wake up and feed her at that time instead of going to bed thinking she should be sleeping until 7am and getting frustrated when she wakes up at 4:30am has really helped.

The pediatrician also said that if she's going down for bed by 7pm and getting up for the day around 7:20, she's getting enough sleep (even with lots of wake ups), and she may just never be a big napper.  On one hand this is really frustrating, because with her naps being so unpredictable, it's hard to have any kind of schedule.  Also, she gets very fussy as the day progresses, which means it's not only hard to get things done during the day, but also, when she goes down for the night, I want to crash as well.  On the other hand, now that I've pretty much accepted that no amount of me setting a routine is going to change how long she naps, I feel like I can be more flexible with our schedule.  Silver lining?

As for crying it out, I know it works for a lot of families, but at this moment, we're not really following it.  I still sometimes allow E to fuss for awhile before I go into her, but it's based more on how she's crying, when she's doing it, etc.  Sometimes she wakes up fussing and I know if I leave her she'll go back to sleep.  Sometimes she wakes up royally mad and I know that leaving her to cry will not do any of us any good.  Honestly, I just wasn't strong enough for it.  Having the doctor tell me she was getting enough sleep as is and knowing she's teething crumbled the last of my resolve.

So we still do a bedtime between 6:30 and 7pm, and she often wakes up several times before her 10pm feeding. After her 10pm feeding, she's great about sleeping until somewhere between 4 and 6am.  Feeds again, and back down until 7:20ish.  If she starts to have a lot of wake ups between 10pm and 4am, we may revisit sleep training.  During the day, she naps between 3 and 6 times for a total daytime sleep amount anywhere between 50 minutes and 3.5 hours (usually around 2 hours- the 3.5 hours has only happened twice in the past month, but ohhhh those were glorious days).

Is it ideal?  No.  Did I hope/ expect she'd be a better sleeper by now?  Yes.  Her dislike of naps would make me question if she was my kid but I still vividly remember pushing her out of my lady bits.  It is what it is, it's only a season, and it's where we stand right now.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

In search of sleep

Well friends, as I stated in my last post, the sleep issue is a big deal in our house right now, and my kiddo's lack of routine/ napping is high on the list of Things That Make Me Want to Gouge My Eyes Out.  Seriously.  There has been crying, from her and from me, frantic downloading and reading of books, desperate calls to my SIL and prayer.

Lets start at the very beginning.  A very good place to start:)  E hasn't been a great napper since she left the sleepy newborn stage (never thought I'd refer to that time as sleepy, but looking back, yup, it was).  We had so much going on, and planned on moving soon, so I had no real desire to push anything on her.  Plus, she was doing really well at going straight to sleep at 10pm, and was sleeping through the night often enough that I didn't want to do anything to jeopardize that lovely stretch.

Shortly before we moved we realized she was starting to get fussy before going down at 10, so we moved her bedtime up to 8pm.  We also moved her into our room while we painted her room, and she went back to getting up 3-4 times a night.  She just needed her paci, but mama has to be semi awake to give it to her.  Bleh.  Once we moved her back into her room, she would sleep through the night better, but then began the fighting of bedtime.  I'm talking all ready for bed at 8pm, practically asleep, but the second her head hit the mattress, screams.  For an hour and a half.  If I held her or not.  Do you have any idea what this mama is like after her baby screams inconsolable screams for an hour and a half?  I'm a crazy person.

I thought it must be because she wasn't napping well during the day so I really tried to get her on a routine.  Our pediatrician told us she should be napping for 90 minutes twice a day- first nap 11-12:30, second nap 3-4:30, bedtime at 8pm, wake at 7:20ish for the day.  So this is what we tried.  This led to her cat napping anytime I wasn't 100% focused on her (brushing my teeth, making coffee etc) and fighting "naptime"  Sleeping a total of about 40min to an hour total during the day.  And still the horrible struggle with bedtime (she wasn't actually going to sleep for the night until 9, 9:30, sometimes even 10pm).  I knew she needed more sleep than that, as she'd wake up in a great mood in the morning, but as the day went on, she'd get more and more fussy.  She was waking up from her naps crying and still tired- rubbing her eyes, etc, but refusing to go back to sleep.

I tried putting her to bed awake, drowsy, and totally asleep.  I tried feeding her right when she would wake up, I tried feeding her right before she should be going to sleep.  I tried keeping her to a set naptime routine, with a wind down time.  Tried keeping the room a little warmer, tried what I felt was just right, tried it being a bit cooler.  Tried letting her nap in bed with me.  Tried blackout curtains, music, lovey, absolutely anything I could think of.  I even gave up coffee for a week, wondering if the caffeine was the culprit.  Ughhh, that was a long week.  I tried letting her cry it out with checking on her, which resulted in her starting to cry again before I would even leave the room, so then I tried letting her cry with me just watching her on the monitor.  She would cry until it was time for me to go in and feed her again.  The only thing that would get a decent nap out of her was physically holding her in my arms.  Even then, she'd wake up after 20-30 minutes and need me to soothe her a bit to go back to sleep.  Nothing seemed to make a difference.  Needed a new game plan.  ASAP.

I downloaded Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, and called my SIL for advice.  We moved her bedtime from 8 to between 6:30 and 7pm, and started shooting for 3 naps a day, with the first one being about and hour to an hour and a half after she woke for the day.  She started waking a bit earlier for the day, around 6:30, but I really didn't mind- totally worth it for her to be getting better sleep since she now wasn't fighting bedtime as she had before.  Her naps went from 20-30 minutes here and there to 45 minutes in the morning and 30 min for the other naps, and again, bedtime was much smoother.

However, after a night when we got home late and thus she went to bed late, the next morning we were both wiped and so when she woke up at 6am, I just fed her and brought her back to bed with me.  She slept until 7:30, and then I fed her again at 8:30, and she went to sleep at 9 and slept for a full hour!  Do what?  Sure enough, tried it again the next few days and yup, letting her go back to sleep after she woke at 6am meant another hour and a half of sleep for both of us, AND a better morning nap.  Sign me up.

So where we stand now is waking for a feeding around 6 am, going back to sleep and waking for the day around 7:30, nap around 9am (usually her longest of the day), nap around noon, and last nap of the day around 3:30 or 4pm.  Bedtime around 6:30 with a dream feed at 10pm.  I'm still hoping her naps will get longer, and honestly it doesn't take much for our whole days schedule to get off, depending on how long she sleeps during each nap.  Sometimes it means 4 shorter naps in the day.  I've read that right around now is about the time she could be transitioning to just two naps in a day, and perhaps if her naps were longer she could do that, but once she wakes from a nap I can MAYBE get her to go back to sleep for another 10 minutes, but that's about it, so I'm not sure how to get her naps to be longer.

I've been tracking her sleep times and over the last two weeks her total daytime sleep has been increasing gradually.  Saturday she slept for 2 hours during her first nap, 45 minutes for her second nap, and an hour for her third nap!!!!!  That's the first two hour nap I can remember her taking in months.  AND she didn't fuss at all when I put her down.  Miraculous.  However, Sunday we were out and about, and Monday I had MOPS, so I'm not sure if that's why, but the last few days she's back to her old tricks- 20 and 30 min naps and up multiple times at night.

It's a balancing act of putting her down to nap when she's sleepy but not overtired, and making sure that she's got enough time between when she goes down and when she needs to eat next to allow for a long nap if she so desires.  I'd love for her to be on the Eat Play Sleep routine, but right now it's more of and Eat Play Sleep Play routine because her nap time length is so unpredictable.  All naps are in her crib, and we do white noise, paci, lovey, and she gets laid on her side (9/10 times she ends up on her tummy).  I can't honestly say this is working, because of the last few days, but you know me, I feel better just having a plan.  And bedtime is still going better.  I think we're planning to start solids tomorrow in hopes that it will help.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Dear Emersyn: 5 Months

Dear Emersyn,

This has been a busy month (aren't they all?)!  You started this month off with your very first cold, and mama got out the NoseFrida for the first time- you were not a fan, but it definitely did the job.  Even with a cold, you still managed to be a smiley, happy girl.  Oh how I love you.

This month brought our first family vacation.  It was mama and daddy's 5 year anniversary, and we all headed to Maine.  It was your first time on a plane, and your first time at the ocean.  We were way more excited than you, but you did love being outside haha.

You can now roll over from back to belly on both sides, but still show no interest in rolling from your belly to your back.  I suspect you could actually do it (you kind of half do it when we're doing tummy time), and just don't want to- you love being on your belly.

Laughs are now in full force, as is the babbling and motorboating.  So stinkin' cute.  This month you've really found your feet, which seem to be extra interesting to you.  You try very hard to get them to your mouth, but your belly is usually in the way.  You sat up on your own for the first time this month, but you're still pretty wobbly.

Also new this month is the amount you are interacting with us, and your attempts at mimicking our actions.  Before, we would do things around and to you, hoping for a response, and now, you seem to play more with us.  Once of my favorites, is that I often nuzzle your neck and give you kisses, and you now like to snuggle into my neck, and give awesome, open mouth, slobbery kisses.  You also really love to try to grasp our faces with your hands.  Your daddy's beard, especially, seems to fascinate you.

You still eat every 2.5-4 hours during the day, and you're exclusively breastfed.  We plan to do baby led weaning starting next month.  I really think you could make it to 4 hours (or at least 3.5) between feeds, but I'm not in any big hurry to change your schedule, and this actually gives me a little more flexibility.  If we need to go somewhere I can feed you before so we don't usually have to nurse in public.  You eat 6-7 times a day this way (including a dream feed at 10pm) and you're gaining weight (16 lbs 3 oz), so no need to fix what's not broken.  Right now I'm just trying to concentrate on your sleep schedule, which definitely needs work.

You're wearing 6-9 month onesies. You can still fit in 3 month shirts and dresses, but pants are strictly 9 month- your legs are deliciously chunky, and you're pretty tall!  Your diapers (bumgenius 4.0) are still on the medium setting, and you have 3 sets of buttons showing.

We've instituted a new schedule in the last couple of weeks, and your sleep time is gradually improving.  It's really a separate post all its own, but you now go to bed between 6:30/7pm, wake at 6am to eat, and go back to sleep until about 7:30.  You nap 3 times a day, around 9am, noon, and 4pm- anywhere from 30 min to an hour each nap, which is great, since your nap time in a day used to be between 40 min and an hour total.  I'd say your total sleep time now is about 14ish hours, whereas up until this new schedule your total sleep time was about 11ish hour, and you were a grouchy baby.  Mama wasn't doing too hot either, dealing with the fussy.  We're hoping it just keeps improving!

 Honestly, this month has probably been our hardest since you were a newborn, because the sleep issue is a big deal.  On the other hand, it's also been the most fun, in terms of your level of interaction, your learning of new skills, and your love of cuddling with us.  Feeling you bury your head in my neck, or seeing you smile and babble at me is just an amazing feeling.  We love you so very, very much, baby girl.

I'll love you forever,

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Home Sweet (Wallpapered) Home

I know I've been bad about blogging, and the 100% truth is that I kinda feel like I'm drowning.  Which is pathetic because hello, I only have one kiddo to deal with and I'm at home with her.  Like an idiot, I thought once we moved we'd be more settled, and I could get into a routine etc.  While this is still my goal, we are absolutely not settled at all.  Normally by this time I would have everything unpacked, house fully decorated, new routines, etc, but there have been three major factors in why this hasn't happened here.  

First, I never had a 4.5 month old baby to contend with, who has no real set nap schedule, and a questionable nighttime one as well.  I've tried to get her on a good daytime schedule so she'd sleep better at night, but girlfriend has a mind of her own about when she should sleep and when she should not.  I don't think I'm ready to do a 100% parent led schedule, but I also feel like I'm doing a crap job at picking up what her natural rhythms are.  Add in trying to unpack and she's napping when she's not getting attention, which means she's not getting in full naps and is therefore she is Miss Crankypants.  Mama is tired, and frustrated.

Second, the hubs is working a LOT.  He's floating to two other towns and while he was supposed to just be there occasionally, one of the pharmacists in a town 1.5 hours away quit right around the time Blake went full time so he is there multiple times a week and every other weekend.  And, they really were probably already shorthanded, so he's putting in anywhere from an extra 2-4 hours per shift he's scheduled.  They do cover a hotel room for him but this means he's gone a lot, and we don't get that much time to see each other or work on the house.  Which is the 3rd reason I feel underwater.

Our new house is big.  As in 3,300 sq feet big.  And the reason we were able to buy such a large house right out of pharmacy school is that the previous owners had, ummm, adventurous decorating style.  Think jungle themed wallpaper, monkeys painted on the wall, and curtains that match the wallpaper.  We've had all the wallpaper removed, but we're doing the painting ourselves, and its a slow process, what with the baby that needs lots of attention, and a hubby that's having to put in lots of extra hours (and no, he doesn't get paid any overtime).

But, what you really want to see is the house, right?  It has great bones, is well built, and as I mentioned, is very large, so there's lots of room to grow.  I know it will be fabulous when we're done with everything, but it all takes time (and money, boo).

The front of the house (duh).  The garage is on the side.

The entry way.  This picture was taken from the sunken formal living room.  On the left we've got the formal dining room, and on the right is the office.

Formal living room.  Complete with painted monkeys and white carpet.  Oh and that's the central vac that I didn't feel the need to put away for the photos.

Formal dining room.

Office.  If you look closely, you'll see that the curtain rods are held up by cheetah head brackets.

Office bathroom.  Pretty sure we saw flowers like this on our honeymoon.  Where there was a jungle.
Half bath.  Monkeys on the wall.

The kitchen.  They updated this about four years ago and there is (thankfully) not a monkey in sight.  I'm not crazy about the dark red, or the white appliances, but this room will probably stay the same for a good long while because I doubt I'll feel like painting ever again by the time we're done with all the wallpapered areas.  I do love the island, granite countertops, walk in pantry, and double oven.

Family room.  Again, not crazy about the color, but it will probably stay for awhile.

Emersyn's room- which I recently finished painting yellow with white trim.  The DIY websites make it look so much easier than it really is.  Again, with the white carpet.

Guest bedroom- actually a pretty blue that we're leaving.  And, more white carpet.

The full bath between the guest room and E's room.  Note the Elephant border complimenting the animal skin wallpaper.

Master bedroom- this is where a lot of the square footage is in the house.  The master bath and this bedroom are very large.  And full of wallpaper.

Master bath.  To the right is a toilet room, left is a linen closet, Blake's sink area and walk in closet.
The bathroom from my door in.  Yup, two doors into the bathroom.  This side also has a linen closet, sink and walk in closet.

The back of the house. 

Love how the back has so much covered space for entertaining.

So that's the house.  Like I said, the wallpaper has all been removed, as well as all of the curtains, but we have a lot of scraping, mudding, sanding, etc left to do.  Then, lots of painting.  Now you know why I'm having a hard time getting around to blogging when I we have so much to do.  At some point I should have some great afters to show you though!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Dear Emersyn: 4 Months

Dear Emersyn,

This past month has flown by, which could be why I'm late in posting this update.  We finally sold our house in Oklahoma, and moved up to Missouri the day before you turned 4 months old!  I'm sure you felt a bit of our stress, and this resulted in some off days, but for the most part, you've done really well!  I'm ready to be done unpacking so I can get back to the business of snuggling my girl since you're growing so very fast.

Just a few days into this month you mastered rolling over!  You only roll to your right, from your back to your belly, but that's all you really seem interested in for now.  This meant the end of swaddling.  I don't notice that you sleep any differently unswaddled and you look so cute in your footy pajamas.

However, you love to roll over in your crib, and often sleep on your side and belly now, sometimes with your face straight into the mattress.  I tried rolling you back over more than a few times, and you'd just roll right back, so I gave up.  I still obsessively check to make sure you're breathing though.

Another development this month: laughs- true, happy, belly laughs.  The first time I heard it, I swear, my heart went into my throat and I almost cried, I loved that sound (and you) so very much.  You don't laugh very often, but blowing raspberries on your neck right below your chin is our best chance, so we do that a lot!  Also, you can now motorboat with the best of them, and often get some good bubbles going too.  This results in lots of laughs from mom and dad.

You've gotten lots of time with family this month- we went up for your Daddy's 10 year reunion, which was the same weekend as his hometown fair, and you won first place in the baby show, just as your Daddy did 28 years ago.  I don't plan on you being a toddler with a tiara, but this was a fun tradition on your dad's side!  We also went up and celebrated your cousin's birthday and you got to meet your Uncle Cory's family at last!  They live in Kentucky, so we don't get to see them as often as we'd like, but I hope you will still be close with your cousins!

I'm thinking when we weighed you last month at home we must have been off, because at your dr's apt this month you weighed 14 lbs 7 oz, and there's no way you only put on 1 oz in a month.   You also measured at 25 inches long. This puts you in the 75th percentile for height and weight, and is giving mama some muscles.  You've nearly outgrown your 3-6 month clothing and mostly wear 6 month and 6-9 month things.  I'm happy knowing that you're getting plenty to eat as you are still exclusively breastfeeding.  You handled your 4 month shots really well, we did just a bit of baby Tylenol and you slept a lot of the day again, which was handy, as it was the day we loaded the truck to move!

You love to play with your baby gym arch, seeing yourself in the mirror, being outside, chewing on your hands (and really anything else), and being held.  You are definitely a morning person, and coffee is helping mama to be one too.  You now hate your changing pad, but love to roll over while I attempt to wrangle you into a fresh diaper.

When it comes to eating, you still eat every 2.5- 3 hours, sometimes 3.5 hours if you settled in for a long nap.  Your bedtime has moved up to 8pm and you get pretty cranky if you're up later than that.  I still often dreamfeed you at 10pm, but your pediatrician said you really didn't need it, so I don't always do so, but I figure it can't hurt anything.

Sleep is still kind of hit and miss.  Sometimes you'll sleep through the night for a week straight, and then the next week you'll be up a few times a night.  Once we're settled in I hope to work on a better nap routine in hopes of getting a better groove.

We tried taking you off your Prevacid when you ran out of your prescription, and you are definitely NOT over your reflux.  Poor baby, I think it made for a few miserable days.

This month has been so hectic, but so fun too, watching you grow and change.  We love being your parents, and we're excited for this next chapter in our new home.  We love you baby girl!