Sunday, July 25, 2010

My 3 Month Old

"Who are you callin' 3 months old?!"


Haha, so it wasn't her happiest morning, but our sweet tiny girl turned 3 months old on Saturday! It's hard to believe she's been here for 3 months already. Everyone tells me how much she's changed and grown, and I know it's true but I guess I don't see it as much since I spend all of my time with her. I still think she's the most amazing little person there ever was.

So here is what she's up to at 3 months old:
  • She is doing so much talking and cooing. We spend a lot of the day chatting with each other about anything and everything. She has gotten so expressive with her voice inflection and her facial expressions (as seen above!). She has even starting putting a lot of emotion into her cries. I can tell specifically if she is bored, angry, hungry, or scared. She is mostly a very happy girl and does a lot of smiling.
  • Speaking of emotions, she started to laugh this week! I was trying to entertain her so I started to sing to her and dance her around. She thought that was super fun and she laughed her first laugh! It was heartwarming :]
  • She also loves to snack on her own two hands. She works all day at trying to get those fists into her mouth.
  • She is now reaching for and grasping toys. She started out with a Very Hungry Caterpillar toy from her aunt Erin. Now she also plays with a little teddy bear rattle toy. It was amazing to see her grasp a toy and try to manipulate it for the first time. You see her for so long as this little baby, and then when she does something intelligent you realize that her little mind is thinking and learning. I was so impressed :]
  • She now much prefers to face the world rather than lay cradled in our arms. She wants to be up on my shoulder to look around or sitting on my lap with her back to my chest looking around. She is so content to examine the world and take it all in. She has become more tolerant of her car seat, though she still doesn't really like riding in the car.
  • She is frighteningly close to outgrowing her bassinet lengthwise. I am dreading this day. When stretched out, she has about 3 inches above her head and below her feet. My fear is that she will need to move out of her bassinet and into her crib before she is sleeping through the night which will cause me to have to get up several times during the night, get out of bed, walk down the hallway, and sit in her room until she's asleep again. I much prefer sitting in my own bed.
I'm certain there are other things I'll remember as soon as I get upstairs in bed. I'll have to tel you them another time though. I'm guessing that stuff is probably pretty standard for a 3 month-old baby, so for those of you with your own babies, sorry to write a whole posting about what every baby does at 3 months. Her being my first, I find everything she does totally enchanting :]

That said, let's end this with some of her happier pictures from later on her 3 month birthday...

Until next time...

Friday, July 23, 2010

Have YOU Heard It Through the Grapevine?

Because it seems that all of my co-workers have.

Ok, so I did announce it on Facebook this morning, but that was after getting several messages from different co-workers I hadn't mentioned it to! Anyway, just so you're not left out of the loop in the off chance that you haven't already heard... it's official that I am not returning to work for the upcoming school year.


It was a tough call for financial reasons and because I love my career despite all the complaining I've done about it :] But it was easy because daycare would have cost us almost all of my income anyway, and because I love my baby way waaaaaay more than my career. I have a, uhhh, "plan" to make up for lost income which I am in the process of implementing and feel confident about its success. I also feel strongly that this is the best thing for our family and most importantly for our baby, and I trust that God will see us through it.

Because I took a leave of absence instead of quitting outright, I am able to go back to a job teaching in the district, though likely not at the same school :[, as early as the 2011-12 school year. I also have the option of renewing my leave of absence for up to 2 years for each child I have. Therefore, if I have another child before my leave of absence expires, I can go right into another 2 years of leave for that baby. It amounts to a significant period of time that I am not making my way up the pay scale - for those non-teachers, we are paid based on years of service - so if I'm not there for 4 years, I'll be that many steps behind on the pay scale. Additionally, it's a period of time I am not contributing to a retirement account. I can choose to set something up on my own and put money away, but we are (at least at first) going to rely on every dollar I make so I don't think a retirement account will be happening right away.

I've probably mentioned before, but my hope is that we will soon (whatever that realistically means) be sustained on my dear sweet husband's income entirely, and the money I make can just be for savings and fun, or socked away for retirement. But I understand that is going to mean some serious sacrifices for a little while. We're young and fairly early on in our career(s), so I feel like this should work out for us.

Anyone out there ever transitioned to one income? Got any tips? I'm open to anything!

So there is the major news in our lives right now.

Before I depart for this post, I want to shout a huge THANKS to my friend and kindred spirit, Laura, whose blog inspires me every day, for linking to me in a recent post. Check out my traffic! All sorts of new cities popping up over there! I find this incredibly exciting because Laura's blog attracts wild amounts of traffic from around the world and now all of those people have been introduced to my blog too! I'm still working on being as clever and interesting as she is, but hopefully some of those folks will take an interest and keep visiting me! So thanks, Laura, you rule. But you already know that :]

Until next time!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Sugar & Spice

Yes, that's what little girls and delicious dinners are made of! This quick and random post (incidentally about delicious dinners and little girls -- rather just one of each of those) is for you, because I care. I wanted to share a recipe I made for dinner tonight which was particularly tasty. It's not my own original so I can't take credit, but I can take credit for it turning out nicely because it did. Here's a gander...

This is sweet & spicy salmon with steamed green beans and brown rice. The salmon recipe was really easy and very very yummy. I don't think I made any modifications except that I didn't prepare as much salmon as the recipe calls for however I used the same amount of the spice rub and coated both sides of one big filet. The recipe can be found here, courtesy of Food Network.

And while you're here, I might as well share some never-before-seen new photos of our Sweet Baby Girl modeling her new jammies this morning. It was the least she could do after getting me up for the day at 6:30!

Isn't she the cutest??

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Happy Nappy

Ever since that pesky 24-hour chronicle, I will have you know that we've been awake every 2 hours every single night from 2-8 am. I'm lucky if I can get her to fall asleep again until 8. Usually she wants to be awake for the day between 6:30 - 7:00. I guess that's what I get.

As a result, I am not going to discuss our recent attempt at nap time implementation. As we speak she is grinning at me from her boppy pillow, swaddled like a burrito. I will not discuss what degree or level of success we've had with starting this nap time routine because I've experienced first hand what the ramifications of that kind of chatter can be. You'll just have to guess.

Something else I'm not going to tell you about is that new business I'm starting. I've been kind of mysterious about it mostly just for fun up to this point, , but I've actually come across some information in my paper work that suggests I should pretty much keep it to myself. So until a later date, that's what I'll be doing. So much for another interesting blogging topic!

Welp, must go attend to crying burrito and hope for the opportunity to eat some lunch :]

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Fourth

Here are a few snapshots of Sweet Baby Girl's first Fourth of July! We went to see fireworks with my brother and his wife, my sister and her kids, and our cousins who were visiting from Tennessee.

Me, my cute hubby, our nephew Evan, and nephew Leo

She slept in the Moby through the entire fireworks display!

My sister, her husband and 3 of the 4 kiddos

Leo looking somewhat concerned, but he has always loved fireworks!

The best picture I got of the fireworks, despite many attempts. I was using my little point-and-shoot.

We had spent the day visiting first my in-laws and then my mom and our family we had visiting from TN. Although we did a good bit of running around, it was a very fun Fourth!

Also that week we took my cousin Gavin who is a pretty talented baseball player and a huge MLB fan to Baltimore for a tour of Camden Yards and a visit to the Sports Legends Museum. Stay tuned for those pictures coming up soon!

Monday, July 5, 2010

How Typical

So after the last post I got some surprised responses with regard to the amount of sleep our baby generously allowed in that 24 hours. I felt that a follow-up post on just how typical this 24 hour sampling really was would ease some minds.

For starters, the sleeping hours from that post really weren't too far off from what I'd call typical. She doesn't sleep quite that long every single night. For those of you moms whose jaws were on your keyboards after reading that, it should make you feel better to know that for the past 2 nights she has been awake every 2-3 hours all night long. Ordinarily she sleeps about 6 hours, eats and then sleeps another 1-2 hours. If I'm really lucky I can get one more hour after that (putting us at around 8:00 am), but that's a struggle sometimes.

As for the rest of the post, we do often head out of the house usually sometime around 11 am or noon. I think she just gets tired of staring at me. As you saw, we spend ample time just chatting and making faces at each other. So to change things up I like to go out to the store, walk at the park, have lunch with friends and various other outings. Sometimes she's tired enough to nap while we're out, but if not, she is definitely ready to snooze when we get home. Typically after our outing it's time to clean and straighten around the house. I try to "accomplish" something along those lines every day whether it's laundry, dishes, cleaning floors or bathrooms, or just attacking some piles of clutter that have gathered. Once daddy is home the rest of the day as shown in the last post is pretty standard. He takes over the baby duties while I get dinner together, we eat and then it's usually time to get our sweet girl ready for bed. She starts getting sleepy anywhere between 8-9:00 and whenever she eats approaching that time frame is when we put her in her pajamas, wrap her up in her swaddle blanket and she drifts off shortly after that.

Feeling a little better? She's pretty amazing, but not quite that good a sleeper just yet :]

Now that you'll be sleeping a little easier, don't forget that there's still the final post in my Transition to Mommyhood series coming up. And I have some more news on the business I am starting up. Plus, I have some cute pictures from Baby Girl's first 4th of July to share with you. So stay tuned!