Saturday, October 29, 2011

Sweet Moments

I feel like time is just flying ... the weeks are passing by really quickly and Lainey is changing and doing new things every day. I wish I could just bottle up sweet moments like this. I am loving our night time routines that we are trying to develop as a family. Not every night looks like this but I love the ones that do ... bath time, jammies, books, cuddles, kisses, etc. I'm so blessed.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Bible Study Babies Part 2

I'm SO thrilled to write the part 2 post that accompanies this post back from the beginning of August. When part 1 was written on August 1st, we were 3 very pregnant girls ... I was 11 days away from delivering and Amber and Bo were about a month out. We knew we had 1 baby girl and 2 surprises on the way. Amber was getting ready to be a mommy of 2 and Bo and I had no idea what we were in for with our firsts! I love, love, LOVE how the Lord worked all of this out - for the three of us to experience pregnancy together for so many months, sharing and encouraging one another in the joys and struggles, and then for each of us to be blessed with a sweet, healthy baby GIRL!
(It's amazing to me that all of our bumps look pretty similar in size but the babies that came out of them were NOT. From left to right, their birth weights were 7lb 6 oz, 9 lb 4 oz and 9 lb 15 oz.)

And AFTER:Bo and Penelope, myself and Lainey, and Amber and Mia

(As you can see, Lainey is a giant. She is the oldest of the 3 so I suppose that makes sense. In fact, at Lainey's 2 month well baby check up [she was actually 2 and a half months but whatever] she came in weighing 13 lb 6 oz, 90th percentile and is 24 and 3/4 in long, which is actually off the charts. We've got a healthy girl on our hands!)

These 3 are destined to be great friends... whether they like it or not! :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The BEST weekend EVER!

This past weekend (long weekend, the best kind!) my sister Emily and our niece, sweet 1 year old Claire came from North Carolina to Des Moines to visit. Emily and I had been looking forward to this for weeks since she booked her flight. I think it's safe to say everyone had a great weekend - Claire loved giving Lainey lots of kisses, Emily loved being near Caribou and Chipotle, Grandma and Grandpa came down to visit both their granddaughters at one time, Simon LOVED the extra attention (even though Claire kept calling her "Yacey") and even Jed enjoyed all of the fun, messy chaos in our little house! I was thinking after dropping off Emily and Claire at the airport that I'd much rather have a small messy house packed full of smiles, laughter, and fun, special visitors than a perfectly clean, huge, quiet house. My house looked like it got hit by a tornado most of the weekend but we all had the BEST time!
When we first got back to the house, Em and I were in the other room for literally less than a minute and we heard a little giggle. Claire was trying to tickle Lainey!
Claire is so good at giving Lainey kisses!
And Grandma! Nevermind that she's nearly stepping on Lainey's head!
Wait a minute... that's not a hat Uncle Jed!
I love, love, LOVE babies in jammies. I love babies right when they wake up with sweet bed head. Someday, Lainey will have hair and therefore bed head too!
I don't think the child got put down all weekend long.

One of the *blessings* of living where we do are the great big, giant trees that drop tons and tons and tons of leaves in the fall. Jed and my Dad were just the men for the job! :)
Claire was a big fan of the gorgeous fall weather and the crunchy leaves!
Lainey didn't care all that much but was so content being outside!
Emily brought matching pajamas for the little girls. They looked SO cute. We are trying to find some for Christmas too. This sequence of events was really funny. Claire just couldn't get close enough to Lainey. She was being SO sweet wanting to give Lainey hugs and kisses.

How cute is this picture of Grandma and Grandpa and their granddaughters?!?
Sunday night Emily made her famous home-made pizza. YUM! I should have paid more attention. On Monday, we went to the zoo with Allie, Charlotte, Julie and Oscar! FUN!

Lainey was definitely less than thrilled to be stuck in her car seat in the stroller so she enjoyed most of the zoo in my arms. :)
Allie and Miss Charlotte! Lainey and Charlotte have the same birthday! Obviously a year apart...
Here's Julie and Oscar. On Mondays, zoo members get free passes for the train. Julie was most excited about this!

Everyone loved the train ride!
Claire got to feed the goats too! She thought it was so funny!
Taking in all of the great sights, sounds (and smells) of the Blank Park Zoo! A quick trip to the mall for lunch and an errand and we were back home for nap time for Claire bear. Claire wasn't a super huge fan of Emily holding and loving on Lainey so when she was sleeping, Auntie Em got lots of smiles and snuggles...
All in all, it truly was one of the greatest weekends ever! Emily has been one of my greatest "mommy resources" over the past 2 and a half months so it was really fun to have her right there with me for a few days and watch her love on her daughter and mine. We can't wait to see Emily and Claire again over the holidays!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

2 months old!

Lainey turned 2 months old last Wednesday! I know EVERYONE says this (and when you hear it so often it becomes almost meaningless)... but I truly cannot believe how fast the past 2 months have gone. All of the new things Lainey can do are amazing (you know, walking, talking, etc... :). Her smiles and the chats we have on her changing table just melt my heart! She LOVES to be held out so she can see what's going on in the world around her. I think she just realized we have a Simon running around the house because her eyes have started to follow him every once in awhile. She's a champ at holding her head up and has started wanting to be held to stand up and put pressure on her feet and stomp them up and down. She LOVES watching the birds twirl above her head when laying in her swing and also likes sitting in her bouncy seat while I'm in the kitchen. She is now an expert at bringing her hand or hands to her mouth and sucking on them or sticking them in there... Momma does NOT like this habit!
Many of you have asked about my cloth diaper adventure. I first read about cloth diapers here and here on the blog Young House Love. I found it so fascinating! Cloth diapering is like an entire different world and people who cloth diaper LOVE to write about it on the interwebs. There is SO much information out there... from brands of diapers, to washing machines, to detergents, to storage systems, etc. you can find a review of nearly every product that has to do with cloth diapering. Thank you, Google. I mentioned the idea to Jed and he thought it was a great one, which surprised me... but, Jed's all about saving money! One of the main reasons I wanted to look into cloth diapering was to save money. When we decided that I would be a stay at home mom, we did the math and realized it didn't pay very well! :) Cloth diapers require a bit of an investment up front but some websites claim it can cost upwards of $1,500 to $2,000 to use disposable diapers for one child depending on when you potty train. So, I decided to keep researching. I mentioned my research to a co-worker at school who was expecting a baby and found out she was planning on cloth diapering! She was a great resource for me - we had a great time talking about diapers, of all things. Over the summer before Lainey was born, we got together and she showed me her system and explained how it worked. I talked with Jed and we decided to give it a go. So far, I have bought 2 kinds of diapers, Sunbaby and Flip - I really like them both. We were blessed to get TONS of disposable diapers from baby showers before Lainey was born and lots of cloth diapers don't necessarily fit newborns (although Lainey was big enough, I probably could have tried) so for the first 6 weeks, Lainey was in disposable diapers. I don't have enough of a stash for Lainey to be in cloth diapers 100% of the time yet and I'm not sure if she ever will be, as there are definite times when disposables are much more convenient (traveling, quick diaper changes while out and about, etc) but so far it is going pretty well. It is relatively manageable and not all that much extra work. I feel like I'm doing laundry all of the time anyway, so doing an extra load of diapers every other day isn't that much more work. I was worried it'd be gross... but it's really not any more gross than dealing with dirty disposables. Breastfed baby poo is completely water soluble. Things will be a bit different when she's eating solid foods but we'll cross that bridge when we get there. The diapers get washed twice each time with extra rinses during each wash and so I'm not concerned about my washing machine (many websites suggest doing a "washing machine wash" every once in awhile too). PLUS, they are REALLY cute on her little 2 month old bum. So, so far, so good! I'd love to share more about this with any of you that want to know but for now, I'll leave you with one more picture of my sweet 2 month old babe!

Happy 1st Birthday Claire!

Happy 1st birthday to our sweet niece Claire! I remember getting that exciting phone call last year on a Monday evening during the middle of Bible study! I snuck out to the guest bedroom and got to talk to both Bud and Emily about their beautiful baby girl's arrival! A few days later, Uncle Jed and I hopped in the car (a sweet rental HHR) and headed to FLORIDA to meet her (read about that trip HERE)! It's been such a fun year! Even though Claire lives far away, we love seeing new pictures and skyping often! Here are some of my favorite pictures from the past year!

Just 2 more sleeps until Claire (and Emily) visit Iowa! YEAH!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Tummy Time

Oooh... this is kind of fun...

I'm kind of bored of this now Mom...

I'm done! I'm done! Someone, please!

{I feel the need to mention this all happened in less than one minute...Drama queen perhaps?}

Monday, October 10, 2011

Squirmy Sleepyhead

Look at this...

How cute is that? I thought it may just have been a fluke but this morning, I went into Lainey's room to find this...I don't know how she does it but I thought it was pretty funny!

Lainey was very happy to be awake this morning... probably because she slept for over 9 hours straight last night and about 8 hours the night before that!!!! Oh sweet sleep, how I've missed you! It is truly amazing the toll it takes on your body when you haven't slept through the night for 8 weeks! It's also amazing how much grace God gives moms to be able to function and love their babies and families on such little sleep! I realize that just because she has slept through the night twice doesn't mean she will tonight or for the rest of her life, but it has been 2 very sweet nights for this momma! Especially coming in to her room to see this cheery face...