Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

We hope that everyone has a very Merry Christmas and is blessed to be spending time with family - whether they are the one chosen for you, but you love anyway, or the people you have chosen to

We are lucky enough to be spending time with both in the coming days.

Evelyn Rae is five months old

...and as I mentioned in my very bad day post a few weeks ago, this photo only took a million takes to get. Approximately.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Five Months

Evelyn Rae,

Here we are - five months into this crazy roller coaster of your life. I love you so much little bug that every time that I sit down to write these letters to you, I get so overwhelmed that I stump myself as to how to put those feelings into words. Someday, you will experience love that is so big it feels like your heart might burst from the size of it. That, my dear is how I feel about you every day. Especially when you greet me in the morning with your big gummy smiles.

Speaking of gums, I am pretty sure you are legit teething now. You have been a little fussier as of late than your normal happy self, and drooling like nobody's business. Sometimes you have little wails and moans of pain, and it But, we are going to get through this together.

You have been such a big girl this month. You rolled over! 3 whole times. That may have been a bit sarcastic. You have been rolling up on your side almost since you were a newborn, so I thought you were going to roll over well in advance of what the "experts said". Buuut, you are also a chill baby. You like kicking your legs around, but are pretty content just chewing on Sophie or any other of your fave toys that happen to be around (those dang teeth).

So, you just hang out on your side most times, and don't actually throw that leg over to get all the way around. You did this month though, and looked at me like, "So? I could have done it this whole time, but I like my side, mk?" Truth be told, I missed your first one, because I left you on your tummy on the floor and ran to grab my camera...and when I came back, there you were looking up at me. No big deal. Alrighty then, check that box, moving on.

Also this month you went to your first Norfolk Grand Illumination parade! We went with your best friends Caroline and Charlotte Mazzio, who love to help with you and call you "Baby Evie". We rode the Tide down to downtown Norfolk, and you slept the whole time. You loved all the lights of the parade, and did so well. We also went to Christmastown with Nana, Haley and Justin. Again, you did so well and looked so cute in your little red coat and hat.

This month was your first Thanksgiving and you had a great time. You did your first art project (hand turkeys) that I think we will make a tradition so you can see how you grow! I certainly am a proud mama with my very first art project hanging on the fridge.

You have definitely evolved into the flirtiest of babies as well. You have always smiled at people when we are out and about, but now you smile and coo, and duck your head and act all coy. You keep chattering more and more, and everyone comments on how talkative you are. Ha. I can't imagine where *that* came from.

Bingley and you are becoming better friends this month, which I think will continue when he can lick you and get some actual food off of you in the future. Speaking of which, we will be starting you on solids next month. You are definitely interested in the food that your dad and I eat, and even more so interested in my straw tumbler. You try to grab it out of my hand and put the straw in your mouth at any given opportunity. Since I am anticipating you eating us out of house and home, I have already begun stockpiling some homemade baby food...though we are considering something called Baby Led Weaning too, so we shall see how it all goes down. You can bet there will be photos.

You are growing and getting so big and curious. I sometimes cannot believe that I grew you from a tiny little dot inside of my body and now here you are - a thriving baby and soon a child. I can't wait to keep watching you grow, bugaboo.

All my love,


Evelyn Rae is five months old

...and I am really trying to call her Evelyn more now, for fear she will think her name is "Bug".

...and since I couldn't decide between photos this month - you get a lot. Plus two GIFs. (If they may have to click them...) Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Loving this.

Saw this on a car next to me at Target today.

Ev is five months old

...and we are out finishing Christmas shopping. Back with a real post tomorrow!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


For the past few weeks I have been roaming the world looking and feeling like a zombie. (I do not say this lightly as I hate, hate, hate zombies. My husband meanwhile can spend an hour describing his zombie apocalypse escape plan to you - but I digress.)

What's the deal? My once great sleeper baby, who began sleeping through the night at 7 to 8 weeks decided that sleeping for long periods of time was no longer something she was interested in...unless she was continually attached to my boob, snuggled up in my bed.

(And I gave in and let her, I will admit - cosleeping, oh the horror! Listen, I was just happy to have some sleep, yo. Read the info on how to do it safely, all the other cultures who do it and then go without sleep for a while before you judging. kthanks.)

Also, though she never really loved a pacifier, she would take one for a while there. Now she refuses. Nothing but the real Mama will do. She will still take a bottle of pumped milk, but only because she gets actual food from it...

Gah. I blame teething.

All the symptoms are there, the chewing and chomping and drooling and fuzziness for no reason - but those damn teeth will not show themselves. So we have been living in baby mood swing central, where my perfectly happy smiley baby will all of a sudden start fussing and then yowling in pain...and nothing else is wrong. It's those damn teeth I tell ya.

Naps have become a thing of the past and she still hasn't settled into any sort of a schedule during the day, but I am hoping that is coming. Her type A mom yearns for some sort of loose pattern...even a loose one.

Oh, she will sleep...for twenty minutes here and there, sometimes even a full hour. Typically though, she falls asleep while nursing and then wakes up within moments of unlatching.

During the midst of all of this - it hit me like a Mack truck one day. I was ready for her to be in her own room. I don't know what flipped the switch but there it was, the line that I had been talking about for a while, and toying with...suddenly I was ready.

Originally, we were going to wait to try this until we were on vacation next week. At my parents house she will be sleeping in a crib anyway, so it seemed like a natural transition point. And a time where A would not have work in the morning and could help. But, Sunday night she was fussing and nursing and fussing and nursing and I finally said to myself - something Right now.

So, I did it. I put her in her crib. The first night was much more anxious for me than Evelyn or my husband (who was happily snoring away while I took to Facebook on my phone for reassurance from friends and obsessively watched her in the video monitor...creeper).

She did OK that first night. Woke up about every three hours or so to nurse and look around at her surroundings. She kept looking at me as if to say, "Why are we in here? This is our play spot, but...ok."

Whenever she stirred, I would wait to see if when was going to settle herself back to sleep and then head in to comfort and nurse. We did okay. No, I did not let her cry it out just yet. I am a wuss or whatever. And I told myself I wouldn't worry about real sleep training until six months. So, no guilt yet. Though my husband is a merciless beast who has been suggesting CIO since she was like 2 months old. Read a book husband! Grr.

But last night, well friends, as I write this to you it is 10:30 and my baby is still asleep. She slept for six straight hours last night, after a few asleep and waking up hours...woke up to nurse at 7 am this morning. I thought she was up for the day, but she fell back to sleep and has continued chugging right along. So I got a few more hours too.

Ah, sleeping in. I feel like a human being again and am so freaking refreshed. I know that last night could have been a fluke, so I am not coordinating the celebratory parade just yet, but I am hoping for the best.

Now if those damn teeth would just show up so that I can have my all-the-time happy baby back, my holidays would be complete.

Evelyn is five months old

...and all I want for Christmas is her two front teeth.

...and my new MacBook Pro that is currently bought and under my tree that my husband will not let me open until Christmas. For reals. He is *that* guy.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


The post-pregnancy hair loss has started.

And believe you me, we are making up for lost time.

It took a while, but now I have these *adorable* little wispy baby hairs all long my forehead that for the life of me I cannot figure out how to make look not too ridiculous. Gah. Just in time for holiday photos and guests...

I think I am shedding more than the dog. Kid you not.

Oh, the problems I have.

Evelyn Rae is in her last few days of her fourth month

...and she loves to stroke my hair while nursing...but now some of my hair is coming out when she pulls, we've had to curb it a bit. Her first solid does *not* need to be human hair. Gross.

Puppy Love

For a long time, tummy time had many faces, but most commonly they looked like this:

or this...

My girl hated tummy time. Hated it. We couldn't really figure it out, because from birth on she had great head control and neck strength - the pediatrician always commented on how strong she was...she just refused to exhibit it while on her stomach. She would just lay there, head on the ground, crying. Occasionally she would push up to look to see if we were still there listening, and then put her head back down and keep right on blubbering. Stubborn.

But, then one day, we realized that all our girl was missing to make tummy time enjoyable was...her puppy!

Evelyn l-o-v-e-s Mr. Bingley. As long as she can see him while on her tummy, she is a happy baby.

Problem is, her love is not returned.

It's not that Bings is mean to Ev, or that he gets grumpy around her...he just prefers to pretend that she doesn't exist. Occasionally he comes over to lick her if she is on the floor, and will pay her the same amount of attention as any other non-food new object in the house. Like a book I may bring home, or a new pair of shoes.

I think when she starts eating real foods he will become her biggest fan, but until then...

She will just keep having her first experience of unrequited love.

I know baby girl, I know.

Evelyn Rae is almost 5 months old

...and I think it's the cutest thing ever when babies give you such grown up facial expressions.

Monday, December 5, 2011


Saturdays stink.

Have you ever had one of those days, where nothing huge happens to ruin your day, but there are tons of tiny little things that add up into a ho hum kind of a feeling? Sort of like a windshield with all those little spider cracks, everything threatening to fall apart if just one more thing happens?

One of those days where you wake up thinking that all you want to do is take a nice picture of your family for a Christmas card, and then you get up and take a shower because it's Saturday morning and your husband is home and you finally get your one shower more than two seconds because someone else is watching the baby but then your husband doesn't think about it and does laundry while you are in the shower and you end up with hot and cold shower lottery and you can't really be mad because the man is doing laundry! and then you get out to get ready and the baby is losing it and the dog is into things he shouldn't be and then you can't figure out your fancy camera because you were an English major, not a photography one, and who has time to read a manual when the baby needs to be fed some more and then you finally get the whole family ready and the light is almost gone and you have to force everyone through it anyways and try to keep your husband and baby and puppy all happy and excited and then you finally get a somewhat acceptable photo and breathe a sigh of relief because of course that coupon is going to expire tonight for that site, so you have to do this right now, and then think wow, things are looking up because your husband is going to take you out for Mexican for dinner and then things are really looking up because you head out to do a little shopping, and hey you are wearing your size 6 pre-pregnancy jeans and that is awesome, but then it gets all blah again, because a customer service lady who has just by handing you the coupon you didn't get mailed even though you signed up for the mailings like twelve times looks at you holding your baby and then looks pointedly at your midsection and asks, "and when is this one due?"


Yeah, me neither.

Evelyn Rae is four months old

...and according to my husband that lady looked like a toad anyways. Harrumph. Happy Monday!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Mini me

My daughter literally just grabbed my tumbler (of water) out of my hands and stuck her mouth on the straw.

(She also protested and cried when I took it away, so that she didn't stab it down her throat.)

What the heck? Sometimes babies surprise you.

Happy Friday everyone!

Evelyn Rae is 4 months old

...and we are *finally* decorating our tree this weekend!

...also I don't know why this photo is publishing sideways. Whomps.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The word of the day is...


When I was pregnant, there was one thing I swore I would never, ever do. And though I am not proud, now I have done it. I have breastfed in a public restroom.

And thus begins the story of my weirdest public bathroom experience...ever.

A few weeks ago, we started having some problems with our water heater. Of course, only when I would take a shower would the heat go out. The person in this family who gets to shower rarely and quickly, was now taking them cold. Clearly, this was not gonna work. After calling in the professionals and getting a death sentence for our poor water heater (RIP), we set out to buy a new one.

Being a now Single Income Family, with the holidays coming up, etc. we knew we needed to do some price comparisons, especially for installation costs. Luckily, it was a beautiful day outside and after heading to some other places we headed to the Home Depot and Lowe's right next to each other in the next city. We parked at Home Depot, put Ev in the stroller with her best friend Sophie the Giraffe and headed in. 

They were great, we had our estimate including labor and hubby's military discount (score) within 15 minutes. Awesome, we thought, that was easy...and it's such a nice day out, why don't we just walk over to Lowe's? Sounds like fun to me! It's a bit of a walk, but so gorgeous, let's enjoy it.

You may see where this is going.

As soon as we get into Lowe's we start working with the people at the front desk, but wait, we have to go back to the plumbing section to get our we head back there. The guy back there is super helpful, but brings up a question about reserve tanks. You need them in one city, but he's not sure about ours, etc. So he gets on the phone to start calling around...all in all this is taking too much time. We ended up at Lowe's for about 45 minutes or so when Ev starts getting hungry. I clearly did not time this well. 

We are walking and singing and doing everything we can to stave off the inevitable, but the calling around is still not done, and at this point she is not going to make it the walk back to the car at Home Depot. My boobs are starting to swell and leak, and I am weighing my options. 

Whipping my boobs out in the middle of man-central hardware store is not my idea of a good time, and there is nowhere to sit, so nursing cover is out, because my baby is now a flailing, flopping, grabbing thing while feeding, so, yeah. Thinking longingly of our car, I decide to head to the restroom. At least I know that it appears super clean, having visited this same restroom before. I leave the stroller and diaper bag with A, who gives me a super apologetic look as he can tell I am not happy about this decision.

I carry her into the handicap stall so that we don't have to touch anything and we have plenty of room. and proceed to nurse her standing up. We're the only people in there and I relax thinking, "This isn't so bad, not my first choice, but look at us, making do."

But then.

A woman enters the restroom. Though there are five stalls available, she chooses the one right next to us. And proceeds to go about her business. Whatever, this is a bathroom, right? I try to shake it off. Then, the woman starts...for lack of a better herself a pep talk. Yup.

I find myself shuffling my feet around and softly making comforting noises to Ev, to sort of gently let the other woman know that she is not alone, but it is not working, or she doesn't care.

Continuing to talk herself through it, I am getting more and more mortified as time ticks by. Gaaaaaaaaah. How did I get here?!

But then.

She finishes her trip and heads out. Whew. We are almost done so I am starting to feel relieved and relaxed again. I hear another woman come in, with two kids running around and chatting. Again she chooses to use the stall next to me. Seriously people? We finish up and I straighten my clothes and prepare to head out of the stall. 

But then.

As I open the door, my eyes lock with the other woman's in the mirror...while she is sitting on the commode. Pants around her ankles. Stall door wide open. 

"Oh! I'm sorry!" I mumble, or something like does she. She is clearly embarrassed and didn't realize I was in there. And her daughters begin giggling. 

I skedaddled out of there as fast as possible and begin reflecting on that woman's decisions. I mean, those girls were plenty old enough to not have to be supervised in the restroom, so door wide open? Also, I assume she didn't know I was there, but what if someone would have walked in from the regular door? Maybe she didn't care? To each his own, I guess?

A happened to be standing right outside the door, estimate in hand -

"Well, Home Depot happens to be way cheaper, so I guess we didn't need to come here after all."

"Please don't tell me that right now... Let's get out of here."

Evelyn Rae is 4 months old

...and next time I think I will make the long walk back to the car with crying baby in tow.