Four Months

Monday, December 23, 2013

Many thanks to Sarah for the antlers!

Things I forgot to add to last week's post:
-The girl loves her mirrors. We spend a lot of time in front of them. Vain little baby.
-Currently in the midst of a major growth spurt. Nursing sporadically and frequently for very short periods of time, and way more fussy than usual. Such fun.
-Also at the four month peak of spit up. You probably don't care to know that, but that is why there are only 2 pictures from this particular photo shoot.
-Thomas is home for 12 days of leave (not to be confused with the 12 days of Christmas), and she is such a Daddy's girl. How do you think I got these smiles? We love having him around.

Cutest little elf.

Little Instagram sneak peek (find me here and just request to follow- I'll accept):

Bought those elf diapers at Target! Almost too big, but I don't care.

Christmas cards are in the mail

Friday, December 20, 2013

Happy Holidays from my family to yours!

Photo courtesy of a 4 minute before night shift photo shoot
(while Thomas is dressed in digital camo from the waist down and I'm wearing pj pants), 
a remarkably cooperative baby fascinated by twinkle lights, 
and a "tripod" of a coffee table and some Bibles.

Design by Shutterfly.

Photo Dump

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Pretty much the only way I am good at sharing photos is on Instagram. I don't even post many to Facebook. So if you're not following me on Instagram, here's what I've been stockpiling in my phone.

Fascinated by Dad's uniform in the Charleston airport.

First flight!

Apparently my husband grew up where Johnny Appleseed planted all of those trees!
I saw the trees! It was like an elementary school field trip. :) 

 Lovin' on my mom's handmade taggie stegosaurus.

Family snuggles.

She loves to grab onto things now!

The quilt is slowly coming together.

4 Christmas trees on the Volvo!

The cell pic that inspired our Christmas card (which you'll see later).

Bumpo love.

What Otto does during the day.

Quilt design- it's a slow process and this is already an old picture.

 THE cutest thing ever. (Not staged. Promise.)

The best toy for little hands that are just learning to grab.

 Margaret's odd new look- sucking that bottom lip in.
And yes, her bib does say "All hands on deck for snack time."
Who do you think picked that out??

follow me on Instagram at faithandmac - 
my account is private, but simply request to follow and I'll accept.

Months 3 & 4

Monday, December 16, 2013

 Late, late, I know. Combining months 3 & 4 to save myself some work. These are her 
3 month photos (taken on time!), 4 month ones will be up in a few days.

Things to know about Margaret at 3 & 4 months:

-She's a major flirt. She'll smile at anyone and everyone- charming people on planes (!!) as we took her first flight (and then three more) on our way to and from Ohio for Thanksgiving.
-But of course she refuses to smile whenever there's a camera around.
-She loves to be swaddled to go to sleep. I am not looking forward to having to wean her from that in a while, but for now, it kills that startle reflex and lets her know it is time for bed.
-My love of spicy food apparently has no effect on her desire for my milk. Whooo!
-We are finally at the stage where she can start to play with things! Her favorites are the O-Ball, her activity gym, a little sun ray toy I made for her (pictures to come), and this awesome moose that our neighbor gave to us.
-She loves to sit and stand with a little assistance. We just got a Bumpo seat and tray in perfect condition from Once Upon a Child for $20! It became a necessary purchase as we quickly got tired of having to hold her upright constantly. Now she can sit for a while, and look around while I wrap presents or do anything!
-Bath time is the best time. She loves to kick and splash around and gets so excited when she realizes that she's getting in her little tub. Can't wait for the bath toy age!

 Things to know about parenting/keeping a kid alive this month:
-They have no idea that you have no idea what you're doing. Keeping this thought in the back of my mind when I feel like I'm totally going crazy is helpful. She is only 3 (almost 4) months old. She won't have a clue as to how clueless I am until she can read and discovers that mommy has a blog.
-I occasionally employ the if-it-hasn't-been-spitup-on-yet-we-ain't-changing-it rule. Made it 36 hours until I realized that I was employing that rule. Changed her clothes and she promptly spit up on the new ones. No winning in parenting.
-I have two friends who also had little girls (within 3 weeks of me) and we are all doing different things, but you know? All of our little girls are happy and healthy. Each Mom is different (Dads too!) and so is each baby! Bottle or breastfeeding, cosleeping or crib, every family operates differently, so not every baby product will work the same and the choices right for one family might not be right for the next. But having friends with babes of the same age- the shiz. Who else will listen to your poop talk, weight issues, or understand that when you say you're going to meet them at 1:00, you really mean 1:15 because there's an inevitable diaper that needs tending to or some other mommy moment right as you want to walk out the door.

Right before spitting up all over the quilt.

Little monkey feet!

Four month pictures will be up in a few days.

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Penny Patch Quilt

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

I'm linking up with Stitched in Color to show off my progress in the Penny Patch quilt along... or lack thereof. I may not be quite as far along as some others, but I'm powering through, despite my super helpful 12 week old. She's cute, but her 1/4 inch seam is atrocious.

Welcome to anyone visiting from Rachel's site! This is my first quilt-along, and come December, will be my first finished quilt (fingers crossed). I'm using what has proven to be a very popular color scheme - aqua and red-orange. My pop of color is a dotted citron. So far, I am completely loving it. 

 I've already tacked up my batting (Warm and Natural Bamboo) - hopefully I'll 
really be able to start designing the quilt in a few days.

 Kaffe Fassett, Joel Dewberry, Lotta Jansdotter, Riley Blake and more...

 I'm about 1/3 way through cutting my strips.

That's all for today!

Thanks for stopping by. I can't wait to see where we all are in a few more weeks!

It's okay...

Monday, November 11, 2013

... if you didn't cook a million freezer meals during your third trimester because you were too busy staring at your big fat stomach, asking if your baby if she was ever going to come out, or if you were busy taking naps.

... that you went to Trader Joe's and stocked up on their frozen foods instead. (And there still might be a possibility that you are doing it now...)

... if you dress your baby up in sunglasses and hats for adults when you are out shopping.

... that you squawk and cry back at your baby when she's being particularly fussy (makes you feel better, sometimes she quiets down and looks at you like, "dude! those are my noises!")

... that you looked at your baby's umbilical cord stump -the reminder that she used to be attached to you, and you nourished her- in the first week of her life and thought, "dang, that is nasty."

... that you've turned into a total prude when you watch tv (or go into Target) and tell your daughter, "Margaret, you will not be allowed to wear things like that."

... that you talk to your child in public places (even when he or she is asleep).

... if you sometimes act over-eager around adults because you spend most of your days talking to dogs and a tiny infant. It's justsofreakingexciting to have someone talk back to you in sentences and not barks or grunts/coos/screams.

... to go the heck back to sleep when she goes down for her morning nap.

... if you need some time to yourself. I never would have pegged going to the grocery store by myself as a luxurious experience, but oooh boy is it!

... that you find yourself wishing that you could swing in a giant baby swing, sleep for 20 hours a day, ride in a baby throne of a car seat while people chauffeur you from place to place, and that you get confused as to why your child cries at the aforementioned activities.

... to ask for help. To have someone else hold your child, burp her, bring you some water when you're nursing, or run an errand. It doesn't make you any less of the super mom you are or will be.

... if you'd rather read the newspaper, recipes, non-fiction, or the backs of cereal boxes aloud than children's books every single day (mostly because we only have about 10 children's books).

... that you want to slap that woman who touched your baby with her germy hands. She was probably touching petri dishes of Ebola virus with her bare hands at work today. You are justified.

She will have so much fodder for her rebellion years

Saturday, November 2, 2013

In 16 years, she's going to be on virtual facebook and end up posting a hologram of the celebrity that she looks the most like.

I'm so sorry, sweetie.

Jellybean, if you see this later in life and you hate me, know that SamPa sent me the email first!

2 Months

Friday, November 1, 2013

 Again, no photo overkill. 4 is enough for anyone not related to her. If you are related, 
email me and I can hook you up. Seriously. I've never taken more photos in my life.

Things to know about Margaret at two months:

- That hair just keeps on growing. It's getting a little long, it may be verging on mullet status, but when you look this cute, you can get away with a lot. Also, all of those promises that it would lay down when it got longer- LIES! Straight up, baby, straight up.
- Head control is a fine art that requires lots of practice, and this girl is giving it her all. She no longer looks like a bobble head. She also loves standing and sitting (both with support)
- As her vision improves (and can see reds and yellows now!), she's fascinated by the world around her. She's constantly looking around when we carry her, and has entered a phase where she hates to lie down when she's awake because the ceiling just isn't as interesting as it used to be.
- Um, social smiling is the best thing ever!!! I wake up to her grunting in the morning and as I reach in her pack n play, she stops and gives me the world's biggest grin. It melts my heart. I have got to start greeting the people I love with smiles like that every time.
- Her desire to express herself grows daily, as she tests her vocal limits constantly. It can often sound like she's upset, but her smile belies that thought. If Thomas and I are talking, she chats with us too.
- At her two month check-up, she was 11 pounds and 12 ounces- putting her in the 80th percentile. Height is 23.5 inches- the 90th percentile! The top photo is from that appointment.
- Bless her little soul, she decided that she no longer hates her swing (pictured below)! Ahhhhh the heavens part and the angels sing!!! It's a wonderful thing to have safe places to put her down while I do things like laundry, dishes and ahem, take showers.
- She has long skinny fingers and loooong skinny feet. Shoe shopping is already proving difficult. My mom says it's payback- I have the same feet.

Things to know about parenting/keeping a kid alive this month:

- Everyone says it, but it's true. Babies change daily. I feel constantly torn about wanting to hold on to a moment for a while longer (especially the sleepy, snugly ones) and then being as excited as she is to grow and learn and take in the world around her.
- Unless you commit to full-on pink, people will always (okay, 9 out of 10 times) call your daughter a boy. "Oh he has so much hair!" Yes, would you like to meet my son Margaret? I frequently dress him up in a blue floral onesie. Are people just really afraid that mothers of boys will be offended if you call their sons girls? The parents of girls aren't too thrilled about that.
- It gets easier. It's all very relative when you've still got someone who can in no way, shape, or form, fend for themselves attached to you at all hours of the day and night, but diaper changes are no big deal. 99% of the time, feedings go down without a hitch. Venturing out of the house is still a big deal (and an ordeal), but it does get easier with practice. But hey, I did 2 loads of laundry today and that's a huge success in my book, so remember that I said life gets easier, not "life gets back to a pre-baby normal." I don't think that ever happens. To clarify, the rest of her childhood still terrifies me, but hey, at least she's only one age at a time. We'll cross that bridge later.
- I miss my brain. Pregnancy brain was a little crazy (potholders in the freezer and such), but for me, newborn brain is so much worse. Unlike pregnancy where I misplaced things, newborn brain causes me to forget the logical places I put things. When you have to do no less than 50 things to do when you're trying to get out the door with a baby, it's a good day when you do 45/50.
- Occasionally, it still feels surreal that we are parents. Incredulous would also be a good word. We can't believe that we love this little person so much, someone we've only known a short period of time. Then again, when we get smiles and looks like this, it's not so hard to believe.

Did you miss our Halloween pictures? Check them out here.

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Happiest of Halloweens!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween from your friendly neighborhood shark and scuba diver!

Calmest shark attack victim ever.

Nom, nom, nom...

Succumbing to her wounds. (with a pacifier regulator) 

Scuba tank. The sparkly thing on Thomas's sweatshirt is supposed to be a sea urchin.

Make your own:

Scuba diver/tank:
$0.49 turtleneck onesie
$1.98 black tights
$0.30 tubing from the hardware store
$3 puff fabric paint
Water bottle, yellow spray paint, black electrical tape, elastic, ribbon on flippers - already owned

Ocean sweatshirt/shark mits:
about $3 worth of felt sheets for the shark mits and fish/crab/squid/etc
$1 for the sea urchins
blue sweatshirt, hot glue- already owned

The mits were just sewn oven-mit style with the teeth hot-glued on. The fish and crab and sea urchins were glued to the sweatshirt. For less than ten dollars, we got an awesome costume!

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I found a drunk in the pumpkin patch...

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

refused to wake for the festivities

pretty darn cute anyway

red tent + orange pumpkins = one punkin tinted beyond my poor photo editing skills' repair.

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What do you DO all day?

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The eternal question. So let us see if I can tempt any of you into motherhood.
Ha ha ha. He he.
Probably not.

4:44 am - I awake to loud little grunts. I turn on the owl night light to discover a Margaret wide awake, but not fussy. I deem her not hungry, stick the pacifier in, and wish that we all go back to sleep for just a wee bit longer.

5:58- Squawks and cries. Now she's hungry! Check the timer- 7h 10 min of sleep. Not bad, Jellybean. As I unwrap her, a pungent smell wafts up. Dee-lightful. We wake Dad up with a fussy, hungry diaper change. His alarm already went off and he was ignoring it, no need to feel sorry for him.

6:16- Halfway done with eating. I burp her and then scurry to the restroom quickly, leaving a surprisingly content Margaret to babble in her pack n play. I return and pick up a smiley girl, so we go say good morning to Dad as he gets ready for work.

6:25- Pick her up to continue feeding and... projectile spit-up, all over her face, onesie, and my yoga pants. Wipe everyone up, strip everyone down, hunt for new clothes. Laundry is probably on the list for the day, much to my dismay.

6:50- Round 2 of feeding is finished and we have completed yet another diaper change. Little bit is awake for sure, so we hang out on the bed. I prop her up in my nursing pillow so she can see the world. Mostly she spends time staring at the pictures above our bed. We chat a bit- me in English, her in babbles, coos, and squawks. Throw in a little tummy time for good measure.

7:20- Heavy eyelids. Tight swaddle and a few minutes later it's morning nap time. I spend some two-handed time making sure the diaper bag is good to go for later, gather up laundry, check email, write for a bit, and grab some breakfast.

8:10- My own eyelids are heavy after a rough night's sleep (Margaret may be sleeping through the night, but my body can't seem to believe that's true, so I've been waking up at 4 every morning and tossing and turning-fun), so I think I'll take the rest of Margaret's nap as my own.

11:00- The alarm that dictates that it's time to start the 1.5 hour process that is leaving the house with a tiny baby goes off. After staring at Margaret for 3 minutes to see if she showed any signs of waking from said alarm, I came to my senses and hopped in the shower.

11:25- Hear tiny grunts and begin feeding numero dos. Am starting to realize that her morning nap is so long, perhaps it's just a continuation of her night time sleeping. Might need to adjust bed time.

11:55- 35 minutes before we have to get out of the door. Diaper change, we both get dressed, feed Moby (who is looking shockingly thin yet again), take the dogs out for a quick walk, realize Margaret has a dirty diaper again, change it, and get in the Outback (aka the Margaret Mobile).

 Pulling out of the driveway at 12:29- one minute early!

12:29- Do small victory dance for leaving on time and try to continue the rest of the drive to the doctor like a normal person. Succeed only slightly, because I spend much time dancing in the car to this song ---> "Counting Stars" by OneRepublic.

2:12- Get home. Plop Margaret in the hammock-like contraption we have for keeping her contained downstairs. She watches me (oh the thrill!) and then dozes off as I clean the kitchen and cook myself some lunch.

2:35- Lunch is ready and the Jellybean is sleeping, so I try to catch up on Bones as I eat my lunch. Margaret is getting fussy a little after 3:00, so it's time to feed again.

The first non-sandwich lunch I've had in weeks (at home).

3:40- Done feeding, fielding a phone call from my mom, and folding a few things. Look over in Margaret's crib where I set her down to have two hands and realize she has spit up all over the back of her clean onesie. Outfit change and a diaper change too. If you're keeping count that's 5 diapers, 3 feedings, 3 outfits.

 Clean clothes!

3:49- Dad's home! We spend a solid 15 minutes making Margaret smile and give us huge grins and making ourselves feel all gooey with love. Best 15 minutes of my day. The next hour is spent with Thomas for a bit, changing another diaper, trying to make Margaret smile again, contemplating giving her a bath, copping out by just wiping her down, and playing with my awake baby.

4:59- Thomas and Moby go for a run, and Otto sits on the couch with me as I watch the last 30 minutes of Bones while Margaret sleeps (and I type this). Thomas returns from his run and we both go upstairs to get cleaned up and changed before heading to see family tonight. We put the dogs in their crates and I leave Margaret asleep in her rocker.

 Baby hammock/rocker-type thing (picture from before the spit up incident).

6:00- I hear Margaret shrieking downstairs, so down I fly to find a red-faced little girl. Another meal starts shortly after. Of course she's so upset she can barely eat, and it takes a good 20 minutes before it's smooth sailing. Lots of squawking and crying and pulling her mean mug on me to let me know that she is displeased with my parenting skills.

6:30-9:15- To Mt. Pleasant for dinner with my family, grandparents, aunt and uncle who are in town for the evening. Margaret sleeps through much of the passing around between family members. We run in to grab some dog food at PetSmart before heading home since we still aren't sure of the situation at the commissary on base (where we usually get dog food on the cheap).

9:30- Late night snack for Miss Margaret. Are you starting to get the picture?

10:10- She falls asleep in my arms. After some quality snuggles, Thomas and I reluctantly get her dressed and swaddle her sweet self so she can sleep in her pack n play as usual. Thomas and I spend some time talking about the day and snuggling ourselves.

10:55- I break my hard and fast rule to sleep when she sleeps in order to finish typing this up for y'all, adding pictures, and get it published.

So that's our day! It's quite full. When the standard feeding and changing routine takes up to 40 minutes, it eats huge chunks of time! Thankfully she's taken to breastfeeding like a champ and we've only had a few minimal problems. I'd say this is a fairly standard day. I usually try to get us out of the house about 5 days a week, just so we both have a change of scenery- it keeps me from going too stir crazy. A little weird that she only ate 5 times today, but she just wasn't interested in more than that. It dropped from 7 to 6 once she started sleeping through the night. And no, her hair still isn't falling out and yes, I think it's twice as long as it was when she was born. Yes, I also think it is awesome.

Not super interesting (and hopefully the next post will be shorter too), but there you have it. I change diapers and feed Margaret. All day. Every day. Oh yeah... and we get to snuggle and see lots of smiles and love on her. Not a bad gig. Now I really have to sleep.

Dang. Just remembered that I still have 8 minutes left on that episode...

One Month

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

I took 2 dozen photos, but don't worry. You're spared. You may not find my kid quite 
as cute as I do. I don't know why you wouldn't, but whatever...

Things to know about Margaret at one month:

- Overall, she is one really sweet, content, happy baby. It makes for two very happy parents.
- She has so much hair. It's the first thing people notice about her. It looks like it only sticks straight up on the top of her head, but after giving her many a bath or shower, I can assure you, it sticks straight up everywhere. The flat comes on the back and sides after she naps.
- She's a chatterbox. Coos, grunts, squeals, and squawks, she'll babble sleeping or waking.
- She's working on head control. It's not so fun when she decides to do that while attached to me, but her new head-banging excitement about getting to eat is pretty funny.
- She loves: eating, cuddling into the crook of Thomas' arm, sitting up (with assistance), burping, being held and talked to, her pacifier, jangling keys.
- Margaret has no patience for: diaper changes in the middle of a feed (I do this if she's too sleepy), her nasal aspirator, or having to wait even a second to eat.

Her facial expressions alone make it all worth it!

Things to know about parenting/keeping a kid alive this month:

- Parental wisdom? Yeah, it's not innate once you bring the kid home. You learn by messing up and fixing it or doing something over and over on repeat.
- You do what works for you and yours. Take all of the advice you've heard and read, ignore the crazy, and mash up the various other things until your baby has stopped crying/no longer has diaper rash/is sleeping (or you're sleeping). Be safe, love them, the rest is gravy.
- It really is the most crazy wonderful love. I look at the Jellybean and my heart is full. Sappy as it may be, it's also true. I'm also convinced that I'm more in love with my husband than ever.
- For us, Huggies are awful, Target diaper rash ointment is awesome, Aiden + Anais swaddles are great, and the Target brand is always worth trying.
- Do yourself a favor- the moment you find out that you're pregnant, sign up for Amazon Mom with Prime. Amazon Mom is free and Prime is worth every penny. I may be overly dramatic, but Subscribe and Save has changed my life. I love it!
- It's hard. It's really hard. I'm home with Margaret and the dogs all day and Thomas works crazy shifts. The most important thing has been to cut the other person (and ourselves) some slack. For now, the little things don't even make it on the to-do list. We clean and do laundry and the important household things, but the rest of the time we play with Margaret or take a nap. It's cut back on our stress and we're all better off. :)
- It's also awesome. The best thing ever.

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