Happy New Year!

Hope everyone has a happy and safe New Year's Eve celebration tonight! 2010 has been one for the record-books for us, and we're excited to see what 2011 brings!

We've never been big NYE partiers, but now with a baby in the house we'll probably be going to bed even earlier than in year's past! Perhaps we'll party it up, new parents style, by having a celebratory cup of coffee in our adorable new penguin and owl mugs. :)


Wyatt, month 5

Dear Wyatt,

You are 5 months old! Well really, you are closer to 6 months old now because I’m a few weeks late in writing this...but better late than never is what I always say! :)

This was quite a big month for you, little man! Several major accomplishments and firsts this month – including starting to sit in your highchair during mealtime, outgrowing your infant car seat and taking naps on your own (mostly while swaddled). There were other firsts, too, but we’ll get to those in a minute.

During month 5 you really started to explore your voice and you went through a few phases with that. For about a week you constantly had your tongue sticking out and you would blow raspberries all the time. Then you really upped the amount of chatter and babble you were doing. We also realized that you’ve started mimicking some of our mannerisms. You were sucking in your lower lip a lot, and that seemed so funny to me and I wondered where it came from...until I realized that I do that exact same thing when I’m concentrating on something! Such a smart little doppelganger you are. :)

You officially discovered your feet this month, and more importantly you discovered that you are flexible enough to get those delicious toes into your mouth! So during bath time and diaper changes especially, the toes are in your mouth. Makes for a longer diaper change, especially, but you have so much fun with it that we don’t mind the extra time.

Lots of increased fine motor skills development this month. For example, you are reaching for toys, looking where we point, anticipating our next moves and interacting with objects a lot more. One particularly amusing development is that if you are looking at me in the mirror and I turn to look at you in real life (instead of in the mirror), you now turn from the mirror to me at the same time! You are so very smart, my love, and it is fun to see your awareness of the world developing.

On December 1, you started going to daycare in preparation for me starting back to work on December 6. I have to say, that first day was a very hard one for me. I’d been with you pretty much 100% of the time from the moment I got pregnant last year up until December 1, and dropping you off at daycare for the first time was really emotional for me. I’m not embarrassed to admit that I started crying when they took you from me, and then I sat in the daycare parking lot and cried for about 30 more minutes before I felt stable enough to drive home. Once home, I tried to distract myself for a few hours before going back to get you. I had grand plans of cooking and sewing and shopping during my “me time” while you got used to being at daycare, but really I just had a serious pity party and counted down the minutes until I could go pick you up and bring you home! When I arrived at daycare that first afternoon you were crying on the floor by yourself, and that just about did me in. I could hear your loud wails from down the hall, and it broke my heart that you weren’t being comforted by anyone. I went all Mama Bear and marched into the room to pick you up, and you were instantly happy again. We went home and both of us took over a 2 hour nap that evening because we were so drained. I’m happy to say though, that you seem to really love daycare and it’s helped to make my transition back to the workplace much easier (and you haven’t been crying unattended any other time when I’ve come to pick you up after that first day). You are thriving in daycare, in fact, and I am happy to report that I haven’t cried over leaving you there since that first traumatic morning! :) Your teachers – Taylor, Svetlana and Francesca – all seem to love you a lot and your happy, smiling nature makes you very popular with everyone there. I come to visit you every day during lunch, so that I can nurse you and play with you for a bit, and I think we both benefit from that tremendously. It makes it much easier for me to be a happy and productive employee knowing that you are less than 5 minutes away from me and that we’re going to have our lunch date every afternoon. Those few minutes of love fill me up and keep me going for the rest of the day!

Not sure if you were just ready, or if it was the influence of being around slightly older babies, but your biggest milestone this month is that you started sitting unassisted during your first full week at daycare! You’d sat up for us for 30-60 seconds at a time at home before toppling over, but within 2 to 3 days at daycare you were going for 3-5 minutes at a time and loving it! You also, within your first several days at daycare, put yourself to sleep during tummy time (another big first!). Speaking of tummy time, you are an official tummy time fan now and you just love doing baby push-ups from the floor.

You were still exclusively breastfed during your 5th month, and we are still co-sleeping and loving it. You pretty consistently go to bed at 9pm and you sleep through the night. When I wake up and have to shift positions (which happens one to three times a night), you start to stir a bit so you nurse for a few minutes without really waking up before settling back into a deep sleep. I love co-sleeping, and I can’t imagine having you sleep away from me yet! We both sleep much better, and the fact that we can nurse in bed without ever having to get up during the night means that we are both getting more rest. Once I started back at work, you started waking up around 6:30am on most weekdays but you sleep a little longer on the weekends still. You are a great napper, just like mommy, and you take 3-4 naps a day ranging from 30 minutes to 2 hours. We are still cloth diapering and loving it, but we have switched to using a disposable diaper at night so that we don’t have to worry about nighttime diaper changes. One diaper a day going into the landfill is worth it to us, to have a good night’s rest!

We don’t have any official stats for you this month, but we don’t think you grew too much in height or weight from month 4 to month 5 (has the growth train finally slowed down a bit?!?). You ended the month around 17.5 pounds or so, and I think you were still around 27 inches tall. You are wearing 9-12 month clothes now, your hair is still reddish orange and your eyes are still beautifully blue. You are wonderfully giggly and smiley and you have such a sweet and happy disposition. Sometimes you look like such a big boy, and I feel like I need to figure out how to slow down the passage of time because you are growing up way too fast. But then other times, like the day we went out in the rain for lunch and I was watching from the door of the cafĂ© while Karl got you out of the car seat, you still look like such a little baby to me. Your papa and I love you more than words could ever say, Baby Bear, and I hope you always know that you are our greatest accomplishment.

As always, here is a link to your continuing Flickr album. I could watch this slideshow all day!

XOXOXO, I love you to bits and pieces.



Merry Christmas!!

From our family to yours, Merry Christmas!!


'Twas the night before Christmas...

...and who should appear?

Grandma and Grandpa,

With holiday cheer!


YouTube Tuesday

Such a wonderful song, a wonderful band and really wonderful lyrics. A great Christmas reminder to remember what's really important in our lives. :)


yet another Wy post...

I keep thinking I'm going to post about something other than our adorable baby, but then I pull the pictures off my camera...and it's all Wyatt! Eventually I'll have other stuff to talk about, I'm sure, but for now it's all about WyWy. :)

Grandma Barb made Wyatt this wonderful baby quilt, intending that it would go to daycare with him but as it turns out it's a stay-at-home quilt (I'm jealous!). So we use it for playtime on the floor, and he loves it!

And so does Henry...no really!

And one other funny bonus pic. These 3 pictures are from Nov 30, so little man has changed a tad bit since then but they are so cute that I just had to share. :)

Happy Saturday! One week until Christmas, and we've BARELY done any Christmas shopping yet. Yikes!!


just a quickie

Not a lot of blogging time right now, too busy adjusting to being back at work and taking care of our family and loving on the boy...but just had to share this adorable pic of Wyatt during tummy time last night.

Loooooooove him. :) Regular posting will resume shortly, including little man's 5-mo letter!


Patty cake!

A Sunday funny...(must watch with the sound for the full effect)


a day in the life

Since yesterday was my last weekday of maternity leave, I thought I would document "A Day in the Life" before I go back to work. Yesterday was a bit of an unusual day in that (a) Karl had the day off work, (b) Wyatt had a vaccine in the morning and (c) we were getting our new furnace installed...but it's still a good picture of what a busy day of my leave was like. Lots of photos coming up (some taken with my iPhone, some with my real camera), so my apologies if you hate photo-heavy posts... :)

7:00am - Wyatt is restless, so I ask Karl if he'll do a diaper change. Karl changes the diaper then gives Wyatt back to me, then I try to nurse baby back to sleep to no avail so we get up and start our day so papa can catch a few extra zzz's on his day off.

8:00am - Mama is showered and ready, so it's time to dress the baby! Mizzou onesie and striped homemade babylegs are in order today. Changed a poopy diaper then read Wyatt some Dr. Seuss books.

8:30am - Papa's up now, so he feeds our ravenous animals then holds Wyatt while I make our breakfast (coffee and Greek yogurt with craisins and walnuts mixed in). The kitties cuddle together on top of the scratching post.

9:40am - Time for another diaper change and then packing baby into the car seat so we can head out to Dr. Beth's for a DTaP vaccine. Wyatt is such a flirt, and he's got all the ladies in the doctor's office wrapped around his little finger! Wy handles the shot like a champ, barely taking a break from nursing to notice the needle in his leg. Good job, baby!

10:45am - Back home and little man is out. I fold and put away some laundry and get another load going. Wyatt wakes up briefly to nurse but goes right back to sleep for a long nap on my shoulder.

11:15am - Trevor, our HVAC guy, calls to say he'll be by later this afternoon to install our new furnace. Yay!!

12:00pm - Lunchtime! Leftover curried chicken salad sandwiches and carrots. Yum!

12:30pm - Diaper change and time to pack up again to head out and see Angi and Presley for a walk and one last maternity leave play date. Papa stays home to get a bunch of things done and to be there when the furnace guys get there.

1:15pm - Arrive at Angi's house and the kids play together on the floor for a bit while we take their photos. They are so cute together, and Miss P is such a great sitter!

2:00pm - Go for a walk around the lake that Angi lives on, help throw some scratch to Angi's chickens, then let the kids play on the floor a bit more. Wy starts to get fussy, so I nurse him then change a wet diaper.

4:30pm - Pack up to head back home. What a great play date! I'm going to miss those when I go back to work next week, but we'll make sure to still get together regularly. Have a great phone call with Barb on my way home.

5:00pm - We're home and our furnace is being installed! We have Wyatt watch Henry so he doesn't bother the workers. :)

6:00pm - Nursing and a diaper change.

6:40pm - The furnace is installed and homemade pizza is in the oven. We read Wyatt a book while the pizza cooks, but it scares him a bit so we have some cuddle time together to make him feel secure.

7:30pm - Dinner is done and Karl entertains Wy while I get the dishwasher going and fold a load of baby clothes.

7:45pm - Mama draws first blood...I was clipping Wyatt's fingernails and got too close on his thumb and caused it to bleed. OOPS!! Mama and baby were both quite upset about this. (SORRY, BABY!)

7:55pm - Wy comfort nurses himself to sleep. Mama still feels horrible, especially when baby wakes up and starts shaking his poor hand. :( (but luckily when Wy woke up the next morning he didn't even notice the injury I'd inflicted...however, I still feel bad about it!)

8:20pm - Papa changes Wyatt into his pj's and nighttime diaper, then mama and baby go to bed.

8:30pm - Wyatt's totally asleep, I surf the web on my iPhone and upload the day's pictures to Flickr.

9:15pm - Lights out for mama. It's been a long day and I'm exhausted!

So there you have it! My last day of being a stay-at-home mom, documented for all to see. Once we get into a consistent routine of me being back at work, I'll do a day in the life as a working mom.

Happy Saturday!


Flickr Faves Friday: campers and camping

Oh my, how we missed camping this year! We had a very good reason not to camp, but we are very excited to take WyWy on his first camping trip next year! One of our dreams is to get a cute little camper (emphasis on the word LITTLE, we don't want a big RV or anything!), even if it's a total fixer upper. For the time being we are still tent campers, though, but we can still dream!


A beginning and an end

Wyatt got his first set of wheels last weekend, and I think you can tell by this series of pictures that he loves it! His feet just barely touch the ground, and he hasn't figured out how to make the walker move yet, but he loves kicking his legs around and playing with the toys on top!!

Oh, my little heart breaker. This is our last week home together before I go back to work, and I'm really dreading not being with you during the day anymore! I do feel very lucky and fortunate to have been able to take 5 months off work though, and I realize that not a lot of working moms get that luxury (in the U.S., anyway...oh Canada and the Netherlands - and pretty much every civilized country other than ours - how I envy you!).

Our original plan was for me to go back to work just 3 1/2 days a week so that I could still be with you at least part of the weekdays for bonding, play dates, trips to the library and the park, etc. But then, as so often happens, things didn't work out as planned. A killer opportunity came up at work, and that led to me applying for a new job and getting it. In my idealistic mind I thought "Either they will offer me the job knowing that I'm going to be part-time, or they won't offer it to me because I'm going to be part-time." Simple as pie, right? Wrong! What they did was offer me the job as a full-time position. I agonized and cried over this decision, and talked and talked it over with your papa, and in the end we decided that the opportunity was too good to pass up. There is the possibility of me perhaps turning this new job into a part-time one in time, but probably not for 6-12 months.

And so, with a very heavy heart, I am returning to work full-time next week. I'm excited about the new opportunity with this job, and very excited about the bump in pay and benefits. But I also know that this is going to be one rough transition for me. So Baby Bear, if I squeeze and cuddle and kiss you an extra lot these next few weeks, just humor me okay?

I love you, I love you, I love you...all the way to the moon and back. :)


Harry Potter

Last weekend Karl and I took 3 of my brother's kids to see Harry Potter 7! Maranda, Lydia and Alexander all had a great time, and we did as well. It was so nice to spend some time with the kids, and we know they don't get to go to the movies very often so it was fun to treat them to something they were really wanting to do.

I must say, this was my favorite of the Potter movies so far. And...I dare say I even liked this movie better than the book (blasphemy!)! I felt the final book had a lot of filler in it, and it focused on the camping for far too long which made the book drag on a bit. The movie moved along at a much better pace without sacrificing any of the storyline (at least, any of the storyline that I could remember since it's been a few years since I read the book).

And as usual, the visual effects were stunning as well. Can't wait to see the last one next year!

While we were at the movies (technically, our first "date" since Wyatt was born...can it be considered a date if you are there with 3 kids and you aren't even sitting by each other??), Wyatt stayed with my wonderful sister-in-law. It was his first time staying with someone other than us for an extended period of time, and he did great! It probably helps that Jill is such a natural with kids, but it's still a relief to know that Wyatt's not going to fall apart when I start leaving him at daycare next week. Le sniffle...


BSG exhibit at EMP

For Karl's birthday this year, we went downtown to the EMP to see the Battlestar Galactica (BSG) exhibit. We loved watching the BSG series (well, we thought the finale was a little weak, but other than that it was a stellar series!), so we were pretty excited to check this exhibit out!

It was pretty cool, although it was a bit smaller than either of us were expecting. The lighting was pretty dim inside, and use of a flash was prohibited so an awful lot of our pictures turned out blurry.

I was so hoping that they'd have a big Centurion)that we could pose by, but no such luck. Darn!

They did, however, have 3 full-size ship models which were pretty cool. They also had Caprica Six's hot red dress, President Roslin's suit and several other key outfits from the show. Lots of fun little artifacts from the show as well (Tigh's eye patch, the book of Pythia, the golden arrow, etc).

The thing that struck me about so many of the props (and so many of the props from the Sci-Fi Museum that we also visited) is how CHEAP they look! It's amazing that they can make something look so good and real on-screen but have it look so cheap and fake in real life!

Here are the rest of the BSG shots from that day (I'll have to put the Sci-Fi shots in a separate post). We had fun! And most importantly, the birthday boy himself loved it so that made it all worth it. :) Plus it made us want to re-watch the Battlestar series, so we've been slowly watching it on DVD these last few weeks.

So say we all...