Saturday, July 31, 2010

you've got mail

I love cards. I love sending little cards in the mail to my friends. And I love getting cards in the mail. Yes, I realize many people view them as a waste of time and money. Why drive to a store, spend time picking out a card, writing in the little space and not misspelling words, looking up an address, buying a stamp, and walking all the way down your driveway to your mailbox? When you could just text or email or Facebook your thoughts to people? BECAUSE. It shows you did all that just to tell them hello and that you were thinking of them.

When I get a card, I know someone spent a lot of time and effort just to tell me something. So I try to return the favor. My mom taught me all about cards. She would send me good luck cards before exam time in college. She would send me funny cards the summer I worked at a stay-away girls camp. She sent me cheer up cards when I was on bed rest with Lila. And just the other day, she brought me a card when she came to pick up Lila my first day of work.

Because really, how much more did that make me smile than a phone call to say good luck? So, send a card and stop being such a lazy, technology user :-)

President Bush said for security reasons,
he's sworn off all email communications.
He will not using email at the White House at all.
Is that a good idea?
I mean, it's not like that speaking thing
was working out so good.
~Jay Leno

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

punch fanny pack

Being on vacation makes me think of lots of family memories. I mean, mostly I am thinking about when it's Corona Time, how cute Lila looks in a swim suit and sun glasses too big for her face, beating my brother in Scrabble and taking a bike ride down the island with Brian.

But when I am not thinking about those life altering, earth shattering decision, I am thinking about all the fun family vacations we have all had together. That family vacation to Jamaica where my dad tried to make us all eat "the best local beef ever" from a road side fire pit. That cruise where we not only were delayed and evacuated due to a hurricane, but were then attacked by a swarm of jellyfish while snorkeling. The trip to the Florida Keys where my brother had to go to the ER after slicing his hand open with a pocket knife.

We sound like a blast. But while we ward off disastrous evil vacation ruining spirits, we also have a heck of a good time. Like when we all went to Disney World together. And that is where the fanny pack game was invented.
Tourists at Disney World love them some fanny packs. When we noticed the sheer magnitude of fanny packs around us, we decided to create a game. Every time we saw a tourist with a fanny pack, we had to call it and punch each other in the arm. Like Punch Buggy, but cooler.

Obviously there is still a place for Fanny Packs, as pointed out so poignantly by Wikipedia: "Today, fanny packs are often worn by hikers, bicycle riders and dog walkers. Fanny packs are used by travelers and were more popular during the early and mid 1990s. They can be slung either forward, to the side, or to the rear of the wearer. One of the primary advantages of fanny packs is that they are hands-free. This makes them great choices over purses not only for travelers, but also for some people with disabilities, and those who have mobile professions."

As the people at Disney World are obviously not hiking, riding a bike, walking a dog or engaging in a mobile profession, I am pretty sure this definition disqualifies their right to wear such a hideous accessory. Poor fashion choice for them, hours of amusement for us.

I see a fannypack as being kind of like
the sweatpants of luggage...and it also says, "I quit."
It says, "I am now a non-combatant in the game of life."
When you have a fannypack, it's like public.
You say, "this is it, I'm done. I got nothing."
~Merlin Mann

Monday, July 26, 2010

working momma drama part 2

Remember my hilarious story about the Pump Fiasco of 2010? Well here is Part 2 for your Monday morning amusement...
After last week's pumping in the front seat of my car, I was all focused on taking this pumping seriously. No more messing around and forgetting the pump at work. I was determined to get the hang of this because I do not want to wean Lila. I really love my time nursing her when I am at home. So I am going to push through with the inconvenience at work while I get the hang of this schedule.

That being said, I was working really hard to streamline the process at work so I can pump faster and get back to work. I was getting ready to do my last pumping session of the day right before I left work, like right at 5pm. So I grab all my stuff, including my cell phone so I can keep an eye on the time. I go into the storage closet at work, shut the door and hear a loud bang out in the office. As I was the only one left that day in the upstairs loft where I work, I was confused as to who made the noise.

I go to open the door's stuck. Will not move. I push really hard and can see through the crack in the door that something is wedged against it. That's when I realized that the extra cubicle partition wall that was propped up behind the storage closet door had fallen, gotten wedged against the refrigerator next to the door. Basically, I locked myself in the storage closet.
Seeing as how there was no one to hear me scream, I decided to do a little problem solving. Or I guess I could have just pumped and dealt with it afterwards, but the being stuck thing seemed to be more pressing. Then I realized I had my cell phone. So I called my boss's work phone, across the building.

"Hello Boss Lady, it's Lindsay"
"Oh hello Lindsay...wait, where are you? Why are you calling me from your cell phone? I didn't know you had left already."
"Umm, I didn't. Can you please come let me out of the storage closet? I locked myself in"
"How did you lock yourself in? The lock is on the inside of the door."
"Yeah, can you just come upstairs? You'll see when you get up here"

1 minute late I hear a bunch of laughing outside the door. And by the next morning, the entire office started responding to interoffice phone calls with "Hello? Hold on one second, I'm in the closet..." I think I will be winning the Employee of the Month award for July.

Most of the time, it was probably really bad
being stuck down in a dungeon.
But some days, when there was a bad storm outside,
you'd look out the little window and think,
"Boy I'm glad I'm not out in that."
~Deep Thoughts by Jack Handy

Saturday, July 24, 2010

relax, don't do it

This is where I am.
And this is what we will be doing all week.
Promise to post some pictures but it's going to be a lean week ya'll. Well, for the blog readers. Not for us. I mean, already this morning I have had a giant cup of coffee, bacon and pancakes. Doing it, vacay style.

Babies don’t need a vacation
but I still see them at the beach.
I’ll go over to them and say,
“What are you doing here,
you’ve never worked a day in your life!”
~Stephen Wright

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

skinny minny

My baby is super skinny. Long little legs and arms and a tiny little waist. We have been wondering how big she has grown since she just seems to be getting longer and not chubby at all (except for those dimpled thighs that I just want to eat with a spoon).

This week at Lila's 4 month doctors appointment she weighed 11lbs. 10oz. and is 24.5 inches long. So 50th percentile for length and 10th percentile for weight. And she has a normal sized head (I kept the little paper but I cannot be bothered to go get up and look for it right now. Basically her head was normal cm.)

So since she has slowed down on the weight growth curve from 25th percentile at 2 months to 10th percentile now, our doctor would like to fatten her up a little. Perhaps she has been reading too many Hansel and Gretel nursery rhymes?

Which means we will now be trying to add 6 oz. of formula to Lila's daily diet. Extra milk for Lila Bean! I am okay with that as I was already having to supplement with formula during the days I am at work since I pump less milk than she takes in a bottle during a feeding.

The doctor said this is probably just her body type, long and skinny, and that she is super healthy. She loved seeing her strong head and neck muscles and the way she was playing with toys. She said she was very impressed with how fast she was advancing developmentally and that Lila will be sitting up very soon. My baby is a genius. Obviously.

Everyone is a genius at least once a year.
The real geniuses simply have
their bright ideas closer together.
~Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

Monday, July 19, 2010

working momma drama

If you do not want to hear a story that includes the words breast pump 12 times, kindly stop reading now and revisit us again tomorrow.

I am still breastfeeding Lila (granola mommy alert!) and loving it. I love the time we spend together each day, just the two of us while she nurses. I love how she rubs her little hand back and forth against my arm while she's nursing. I love how she stops and gives me the biggest smile because she's so content being in my arms. This is by no means a bottle bashing post, because everyone has to do what's right for them and their baby, but this is what is right for Lila and I.

But going back to work last week has created a whole new challenge. Breastfeeding now includes a third person: The Pump. I have worked our schedule so Lila needs 3 bottles while I am away at work: 9am, 12pm, and 3pm. Which means that I need to pump 3 times while I am at work in order to keep up with all the milk she needs. So imagine walking into work your first day and not only are you learning everyone's name, going through orientation and organizing your desk. Now, I am also looking for open outlets, setting up my dish soap and drying station for my bottles and trying to carve an extra 60 minutes (20 minutes for each pumping session) into my day.

Any mom who still breastfeeds their child after they go back to work will tell you it creates some serious drama in your work day. But for me right now, it is still worth it.

So back to the story...normally I pump 3 times a day in the supply closet in my office. Yes you heard me right, in the supply closet. Next to the post it notes and file folders. And sitting up against the office computer server so it is a million degrees and there is a large humming noise to cover up the "urgh-urgh, urgh-urgh" noise of my pump. On Friday, I was running around like a crazy person all day with lots of meetings and whoops, I skipped a pumping session. So I knew as soon as I got home, I would need to feed Lila or I would be in some serious pain. But when I got home, she was sound asleep. And the nanny had just fed her a bottle!

After paying Nanny Hannah, I decided to quickly pump before Lila woke up. After getting all of the 12 million parts assembled and reaching for the power cord that makes it run, I realize the cord is not in my bag! I left it in the supply closet at work. FAIL.

Now I have two options: wake Lila up and see if she will eat anything else (mommies know better than to ever wake a sleeping baby) OR...use my car charger for my pump. So since Lila is downstairs in her pack and play, I have no monitor to listen to her. I crack our front door, run out to the car, roll all the windows down in the 95 degree heat so I could maybe hear her if she cries and hook up the pumpto The Girls. So to recap, it is just after 5pm and all of my neighbors are getting home, I am sitting in my car in the driveway with the windows open and pumping with my shirt open. Class, class, class.

After 20 minutes of crouching over towards the floorboard every time a neighbor drove by, sweating profusely from the heat and stress, and straining to listen for Lila, I had a bottle of milk and a new vow to NEVER leave my pump charger at work again.

There are three reasons for breast-feeding:
the milk is always the right temperature;
it comes in attractive containers;
and the cat can't get it.
~Irena Chalmers

Saturday, July 17, 2010

i'm on a boat

Last weekend, we went to Hyco Lake with our friends Sarah and AJ and some other friends. Sarah and I went to college together and they just announced they are expecting their first baby in January! We were so excited to take Lila out to the lake and enjoy some family time. We weren't sure about taking her on the boat, since she is too teeny tiny to wear a life vest. But we decided to put her in the Baby Bjorn and then I could hold her, which made me feel more safe.
Lila loved the breeze and took a nice nap on the boat. I on the other hand, felt like I was in a sauna of baby heat up against me, 90 degree weather, and sun beating down. Those kids and their warm little bodies! It was fun to think about all the firsts we will have with her, teaching her to swin, seeing her on a tube for the first time, going on a boat and her actually paying attention to all the water around her.
What a perfect day to be out at the lake and enjoying the gorgeous weather, grilling burgers and eating on the porch, talking about Sarah and AJ's little baby growing strong, and sitting on the dock eating chocolate snowballs.

Oh wait, you would like a super yummy chocolate snowball for a summer treat? Then help yourself....

Sarah's Chocolate Snowballs
Prepare in advance: mix chocolate syrup, water, and sugar in a bowl. Mix until reaching a watery, sweet consistency.

Pour chocolate mix into clean ice cube trays and freeze. Keep in freezer for whenever your sweet tooth desires.

In a mason jar (ya'll this MUST be served in a mason jar!), put a chocolate mix ice cube. Then add a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a little bit of milk or half and half. Crush up the chocolate mix ice cube, mix and enjoy!

A perfect summer day is when the sun is shining,
the breeze is blowing, the birds are singing
and the lawn mower is broken.
~James Dent

Friday, July 16, 2010

super mom

Well hiiiiiiiii there :-) Why yes, I did just take a week long break from blogging. I realize this. I did not just lose my watch or Blackberry or every calendar in my house. Man, being a working mommy is serious stuff. I mean super hard. All you working mommies out there, BRAVO. How the heck do you do it??

So this is what my last week has looked like:
Monday - woke up at 6am, nursed Lila, put her back to bed, got up and ready for work, fixed Lila's bottles, had breakfast, got my mom all set up around the house, went to my NEW JOB, worked, pumped in a tiny closet, worked, pumped in a tiny closet, worked, pumped in a tiny closet, came home, held Lila and cried for 45 minutes, shoveled food down, nursed Lila and gave her a bath, crashed into bed.

And that my friends was just Monday. Basically every day went like that, except the crying got less. I LOVE my new job. It is in such a positive non-profit that helps a lot of families. I get to help plan amazing special fundraising events. And yesterday, I spent about 15 minutes in the middle of the day playing lego guns with a bunch of kids. Such a perfect job for me.

But this adjustment is a lot harder than I thought. How do I just leave my baby all day long with someone else? I knew it would be hard, but I didn't think it would be this hard. I just think about her little feet and get all teary eyed. There is this unexplainable connection that exists between her and I. I physically ache when I am away from her. And seeing her eyes light up when I walk back in the house is the best feeling ever, but it makes me wonder if she notices that I am missing from her day.

I know it will get easier with time. I know God will give me strength as I stumble through this next stage of parenting. One thing that has really helped is getting picture texts of her from my mom throughout the day. Just doing a little event planning and a picture of Lila with Lola the sheep pops up in my email (could we possibly make the toy names any more confusing??)
And then I am finishing up a meeting and I get to see my little girl enjoying the pool.

I keep reminding myself that there is grace in parenting. There is grace for the stack of dirty dishes in my sink. There is grace for my sweet hubby not having any clean undershirts today. There is grace for my adjustment to being at work and having a little cry in the bathroom because I just want to smell Lila's hair right at the moment. There is grace for worrying that Lila will miss me during the day at some point. There is grace in just trying my best to be a good mom.

The best conversations with mothers
always take place in silence,
when only the heart speaks.
~Carrie Latet

Sunday, July 11, 2010

creature of comfort

Lila is little miss fashion plate. Between my sister (a fashion major in college), my mom (always hunting a fabulous deal) and Brian's mom (loving having a little girl to spoil), Lila owns more clothes than I will ever have. She literally could go about 3 weeks without a need for laundry. Not that it ever happens, since I now do more laundry than I ever thought possible. It is amazing how she just senses she has clean clothes on and the poop and spit up magically appear on them. As if there was a Stain Fairy who she employees on an hourly basis.

But with all of her clothes, there is a theme. Always cute, but often uncomfortable. Collars. Not comfortable for babies. Just flip up in their face. Kind of like a permanent spit up catcher. Ruffles. Difficult to keep unwrinkled. Because ironing my baby's clothes is just what I need to do in my free time...between switching clothes from the washer to the dryer.

And now, there is the pink baby overall dress. Oh so adorable. Makes me want to die a little inside. But could anything look more uncomfortable?
Oh sure, she is about the cutest thing you have ever seen. But babies scoot down in their seat. They fold over into a little ball. The roll around in circles. And then they end up like this.
Could I be any more of a mean mommy, dressing her in ridiculous outfits for my own viewing pleasure? But my gosh, she will thank me for the cute baby pictures one day.

Sweater, n.: garment worn by child
when its mother is feeling chilly.
~Ambrose Bierce

Saturday, July 10, 2010

four and fabulous

Happy four month birthday baby girl! I remember when you were just a little new baby. You were so sweet, just calm and full of adorable baby noises. You used to shudder so cute in your sleep, like you were having little baby dreams. You would constantly make nursey faces in the night, always wanting another snack. This is one of favorite pictures of you, the night you came home from the hospital.
You have become so much fun with all your smiles and squeaks. You can say the "M" sound now and love to squeall really loud. You LOVE the sound of your own voice. You smile at anyone who smiles at you; always making new friends. You love to fall asleep with your little pink blanket across your face. We think it is because it calms you down and is super soft. But everyone thinks we are smothering you, so thanks for that.
You are almost sitting up. You can hold your head and shoulders up all by yourself. You love to lay on your play mat and try to bat at the toys hanging above you. And then, quick as lightening, you roll over onto your tummy and push your little arms underneath you so you can look around. You wouldn't want to miss anything by laying down!
We can't wait to see who you grow up to become. We know you will be so full of life, such an adventurous little girl. Here's to many more celebrations of your life to come!

Your children will become what you are;
so be what you want them to be.
~David Bly

Friday, July 9, 2010

beach blanket bingo

This last weekend marked a lot of firsts for our family. First long car trip with Lila; first fireworks; Lila's first time on the beach. Lila's favorite part of the weekend: sitting in my lap right at the water line with the waves just creeping up our toes and legs. My favorite part of the weekend: washing a bucket full of sand out of my bathing suit after sitting in the surf like a toddler. Here are some of our favorite moments from the weekend in pictures.

We'll all be planning out a route
We're gonna take real soon
We're waxing down our surf boards
We can't wait for June
We'll all be gone for the summer
We're on safari to stay
Tell the teacher we're surfin'
Surfin' USA
~"Surfin' USA" by The Beach Boys

Thursday, July 8, 2010

little toes

And the winner of the necklace by Ohanabylea is... Martha! She emailed in her comment, rather than posting it, but I was so glad to get her entry and her necklace wish for her two baby girls, Emma and Jane. Congratulations Martha!

What a crazy week! We just got back from Garden City, SC, where we were vacationing with Brian's family for a long 4th of July weekend. We loved spending time with his family, eating lots of yummy seafood, taking walks on the beach, and best of all, seeing Lila's expression at the first moment we put her little toes in the wet sand. I have lots of pictures to post, so those will be up later this week.

I am kind of dealing with a little sadness at the thought of going to work at my new job starting on Monday. I am incredibly excited about this new job, as it will be such a wonderful fit with me, raising money through special events for a wonderful charity I strongly believe in. But it means leaving my little girl at home. The little girl who has heard my voice every morning since the day she was born.

Last night, after I changed her into her safari onsie (because you never know what kind of wild animals you might encounter in your crib), I sat in the glider in her room with the lights off. Just snuggling her. Smelling her baby sweetness. And crying a little, at how big she is already. My little girl is not a newborn anymore. She is rolling around. Reaching for toys and stuffing them in her mouth. Babbling on and laughing big silly laughs. Throwing fits when I don't give her milk the moment she decides that she might possibly be hungry.

I know it is okay for her and I to spend some time apart, and it will be good for both of us, but I am sad that this chapter is ending. And I know Monday morning will be harder than I can imagine. But the best part is that after all those years of waiting, Lila will be waiting for me each afternoon when I walk back into the house, ready to see her mama.

Let them be little
Cause they're only that way for a while
Give them hope, give them praise
Give them love every day
Let them cry, let them giggle
Let them sleep in the middle
Oh, let them be little
~"Let Them Be Little" by Lonestar

Monday, July 5, 2010

give it to me

Who doesn't like to win stuff for free? Who doesn't like to win beautiful handmade stuff for free?? Remember the beautiful necklace Brian got me for Mother's Day? Well Lea of Ohanabylea's Etsy Shop who made my necklace is giving away this beautiful necklace to one of my lucky readers!
She will personalize this necklace just for you (or your mom, or your sister, or your BFF, or anyone else who you want to get on your good side by giving this beauty to as a gift). You can have her put the names of your children, or a name on one and birthdate on another, or maybe just some life words or bible verses that speak to you.

So here's what you have to do to win this necklace:
-Be a follower of my blog by clicking on the "Follow" button on the right hand side of the blog and then leave a comment on this post telling me what you would write on this necklace if you won (required to enter)
-Head over to Ohanabylea's Etsy shop and "Add seller to Favorites" then come back here and leave another comment telling me you did (+1 extra entry)
-Follow me on and then come back here and leave another comment telling me you did (+1 extra entry)

You have until Wednesday night at midnight to enter. Why yes, I am giving you three days to click 2 buttons. I will announce the winner on Thursday morning! Yay for you!

If winning isn't everything, why do they keep score?
~Vince Lombardi

Sunday, July 4, 2010

let freedom ring

Today is a very important day for our country. I have never had anyone in my family in the military, but I totally respect and honor everyone who fights for our country. My one mommy friend who is a military wife is about the most selfless woman I know.

She said goodbye to her husband as he went off to Iraq when their son was less than a year old. She made a giant magnet of her husband's face so that their son could say goodnight to daddy every evening. She found a bakery that would mail a fresh cake to her husband overseas so fast that it was still yummy.

And now he is home, and she still supports him and his fellow soldiers every day. This post is dedicated to Ellie, her husband Geoff, their beautiful little boy Grant, and their blessing of a baby due in about 2 months. We salute you Geoff for all your bravery and we salute you Ellie for staying behind and standing strong.

It is courage, courage, courage, that raises
the blood of life to crimson splendor.
Live bravely and present a brave front to adversity.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

happy girl

Yesterday was a good day. Do you ever have those days that you just sit and smile about as you drift off to sleep? I have so much to be thankful for...

1. Sleeping in. Maybe I'm lazy. Maybe I just like watching Lila sleep peacefully beside me in bed (only in the morning people, don't get all riled up).

2. ALL of the laundary in the house done. Like not even a dirty pair of socks hiding anywhere. Not even in Brian's golf shoes.

3. Packed for the awesome weekend at the beach with Brian's family. Sand and sun, here we come!

4. Pool time this afternoon with my family.

5. Big smiles from my diaper clad baby at the pool.

6. A yummy dinner on the back porch of shish kabobs, carne asada, guacamole, and warm crusty bread.

7. Oh, and margaritas, fresh out of the blender. Not that I am necessarily going in order of awesomeness. But if I was, that would be first.

Most people are about as happy
as they make up their minds to be.
~Abraham Lincoln

Friday, July 2, 2010

the saving one

Yesterday, Lila and I had some fun bath time and then I laid her down on her Pack N Play to air dry. Lila hates air drying. Not that I can blame her. I mean, I wouldn't like being wet and naked and forced to lay there all cold. That's what comfy robes are for.This time I decided to try playing some worship music and see if the music distracted her for a minute or so. I walked back over from the kitchen and look who had fallen fast asleep.
I had been playing Brian and I's new favorite worship song, "The Saving One" by Starfield. It has such an awesome message and I guess it calmed Lila's little heart down. I love when she gets quiet during worship at church and I hope she is taking it all in, even at this age. Here is a video with the song, and I apologize in advance for some of the pictures in the video. I do not condone music videos with pictures of bald head eagles. Or badly photoshopped pictures of Jesus' tomb.

See that you do not look down 
on one of these little ones.
For I tell you that their angels in heaven
always see the face of my Father in heaven.
~Matthew 18:10

Thursday, July 1, 2010

dangerous liaisons

Now that I am a mom, I am experiencing a weird new sense of danger. I constantly scan for things that could hurt Lila or situations that would be unsafe for her. Man, Mommy Sense is way more intense than Spidey Sense. It's this constant wheel in the back of your brain running through your surroundings and shouting "Danger! Danger Will Robinson" every couple of minutes.

The last couple of days I have had two different things happen that could have been way dangerous for Lila. And I didn't even see them coming. I am thinking I am having a dip in my Mommy Senses.

On Monday night, I was out all day driving around doing different errands. Brian got home from work shortly after me and came in the house to tell me that my rear passenger tire was flat on my car. How did that just happen since I got home?? After AAA got to our house to put on our spare, we found out I had a giant screw in the tire that had been there for some time and was causing the inside of the tire to come apart. Basically my tire could have exploded at any on the HIGHWAY that I had been driving back and forth on all day. With the baby. At high speeds. Thank God we avoided that potentially deadly situation.

Then yesterday, I was having coffee with my best friend Jen. We walked out of Starbucks to go to our cars. I was holding Lila (who was crying because I was too busy talking to realized we had crept past snack time) and then...I straight up fell off the sidewalk. Tripped several feet clutching Lila to my chest. And caught myself just before my body hit the ground. Lila probably just thought we were on a cool roller coaster but Jen and I just stared at each other in absolute horror.

What the heck? I walk through Target and imagine ceramic bowls falling off shelves and hitting her, small children with herculean strength pushing her over in the cart, and AC units blowing too high and causing hypothermia. But yet in the span of 3 days, I almost caused a life threatening car accident and almost dropped my child (or at the very least almost fell holding her). Bad mommy, BAD!

There's a man who leads a life of danger
To everyone he meets he stays a stranger
With every move he makes, another chance he takes
Odds are he won't live to see tomorrow
Secret agent man, Secret agent man
They've given you a number
and taken away your name
~"Secret Agent Man" by Johnny Rivers