Monday, October 20, 2014

the other thing

 The "thing" that lives with me
I have known this “thing” existed for over three and a half years, but truly have only lived with it for a little under two. This “thing” is something that worries me, keeps me up at night, and makes me wonder if I am going to be okay. It is also the greatest “thing” I have ever lived with.
In November, 2012 shortly after a wedding, my wedding something happened that caused this “thing” to come back with a vengeance. A car accident woke the “thing” up. Roughly a year and a half into me living with the “thing” that I knew, I finally got to say hello.  It was the scariest most awkward introduction you could ever imagine. It was so scary that I cried and cried and never wanted to meet this “thing” again. I was so mad that I was forced to meet this “thing”. It had been on vacation for three years, why did it have to come back now?
Ever since I was introduced to this “thing” it won’t go away. It’s like you’re in laws.  It’s great when they visit but no one wants them to stay…It comes and goes as it pleases. It shows up once a month or sometimes three times a week, completely unannounced, with no regard for your privacy.  At first when this “thing” decided to live with me I wanted to change my way of living and how I planned my day around if it would show up. I soon learned that you can’t wait around for something to ruin your day so I decided to live my life, as my life. I take the “thing” with me because I know it’s going to show up any way so why not just plan to have fun with it. I’ve realized that makes things much easier for me.
This week, the “thing” is going to the hospital to be studied again. To be controlled, removed, reduced, ect…This is a week with mixed emotions, you pray for the best while expecting the worst.  No matter the outcome with this “thing” I am so glad to have been part of this journey. It has given me the opportunity to overcome fears and believe that things always happen for a reason. This “thing” has also shown me what true love is like, I mean how could you truly love something that you hate?
This “thing” Is Epileptic Seizures
It lives with my husband
He lives with me…

The above was written by Chris.  I went to him last week to ask if I could write a post about his epilepsy.  I'm obviously very open on my blog, but this wasn't my story to tell.  I wrote a post, and in response he wrote the above.  It's his interpretation on his epilepsy through my eyes.  
He told this story simply as a fun way to let people know he has epilepsy, not to ask for sympathy. This is something that lives with him, lives with us.  I specifically wanted to share this so that I could ask for prayers and happy thoughts as we enter into what will be a hard, difficult, and emotional week. 
For the most part I've dealt with Chris' epilepsy by myself.  It feels good to let it out, and if anything it opened up an even bigger line of communication with my husband, and for that I'm grateful.  I pray nightly that God will take away Chris' seizures, and I feel He has opened this door to help us onto a journey so Chris is back to being seizure free.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

5 months

Helena turned 5 months on Friday!  Can you believe it?, because I know I can’t.  A couple of weeks ago my friend Erin who also has a 5 month old said to me: “Can you believe we have 5 month olds?”  It seems unreal.  Now I tell Chris, that her getting older, is just a sign that we’re getting older too!
Helena is so much fun!  Although we had a rough end to our week last week as baby girl got a horrible case of diarrhea.  She was pooping every hour for about 2 days straight!  It was not fun, for either of us.  Her poor little bum was so red.  And she hated being cleaned.  Thankfully she stayed hydrated and is now doing much better! 
She’s still in size 2 diapers, and size 6 month clothes, although her 3 month onsies still work, but the pants are just too short.  She growing more and more curious about food, so I think that’ll be on the menu once I know her diarrhea is completely cleared up.  She loves grabbing at things.  She moves so much!  It’s most comfortable for her to nurse when she is tired, if not she moves her head and tries to take my nipple with her, and that’s a little bit painful.  As difficult as nursing has been, I’m sad that it’ll soon be over.  She’s working on sitting up.  She can sit up “gorilla” style with her arms in front of her for a long time, and has a couple of times completely balanced on her own, but only for a few seconds.  She’s a lot more steady holding up her bottle when we bottle fed. 
She loves her play saucer thing.  She’s managed just about everything on it, but doesn’t quite get the turn seat.  Before long she’ll master it!
She loves to move, and changing her diaper at times is definitely a challenge. 
She loves to laugh and to talk.
She love is when I sing and sign to her.  Specifically the ABC's and numbers.
She has uber sensitive skin.  We took her to the pediatrician at the end of September because she had a horrible all over body rash.  We’re now using a baby eczema lotion, and that is helping, although her skin is still super dry. 
my current favorite picture, after bath time 10/12/14

Monday, October 6, 2014

2 years

Beautiful anniversary flowers!

they smell so good

Chris and I had a great weekend.  Nothing major happened, but I do want to take the time to document it just so I can remember.
Saturday was a bum day.  It was well past 12noon before either of us took showers.  We had a super lazy day, and it was perfect.  Chris made super delicious pancakes, and we got somewhat caught up on our TV shows.    We hung out and played with Helena, and overall it was just a good day.  Chris even had the most beautiful and huge arrangement of flowers delivered to the house to begin the celebration of our 2nd wedding anniversary!  The flowers are simply stunning, and I love them!  Chris truly knows how to make me feel loved and put a smile on my face. I am blessed.
On Sunday we actually woke up sorta early (7amish) and decided to head to church.  I had started to really miss church, as we hadn’t been in at least 3 weeks!  I gave Chris his anniversary card, we got ready, and made a grocery list and menu for the week.  Of course on the day that we are up early, Helena decided to sleep until we needed to wake her to head to church…we got her up around 9am, and she probably would have slept longer!  (I think she’s going through a growth spurt, as she’s been doing a lot of sleeping.)  Chris fed her on the way to church, and she was such a super happy and calm baby during the entire service!  After church we went to breakfast and grocery shopping.  We got home just in time to prevent Helena being super fussy in public, to feed her, and get her down for an afternoon nap.  She fell asleep right at the start of the Bronco game, and slept until about 4:30pm!  During the first part of the game I did something’s around the house (laundry, put up Halloween decorations) then at halftime Chris and I sat down for the first time since Helena arrived and did our budget.  Prior to Helena we had done a great job of doing a monthly budget and doing our finances together every weekend.  But having a newborn, the last thing I wanted to do was look at the money.  Chris, being the rock star husband that he is, took the finances off of my plate and has been handling all of it since we became a family of 3.  It felt great to reconnect with our finances and get back on board with our budget, and go back to making it a true partner effort.
After that was done I pumped and then our babysitter arrived.  I can’t even describe how lucky we got in finding Chendra!  Prior to the whole childcare thing, in my mind the perfect scenario was to somehow find a college aged woman who could watch Helena on the afternoons I was at work.  To have her schedule work perfectly with our schedule.  And that’s exactly what we found!  It’s sorta long story, but I found Chendra on Facebook, and she is a godsend!  Not only now do we have someone to watch Helena during the week, we now have someone who can watch her if Chris and I want a night out.  And last night was one of those nights!  Chris and I had our first “typical” date night since Helena, with the classic dinner and a movie!  We went to go see “Gone Girl” then had dinner at Rock Bottom.  Not fancy, but just what we needed.  I constantly tell Chris how happy I am that we continue to go out even with a baby at home.  Since Helena’s arrival we’ve been out 4 times and I feel so blessed that we’ve had those times to just be husband and wife for a few hours out and about knowing our daughter is at home and well taken care of. 
Yesterday we talked a lot about the past 2 years.  Being married, our anniversary trip last year to Steamboat, and now being parents.  We talked about our future and what we pray and hope for. 
The weekend in general was just a couple of days I want to remember. 

and of course a cute picture of Helena

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Latest Happenings

Just some updates on my baby girl.

She just started making this silly cheesy grin.  Who knows where it came from, but my goodness it’s cute!

She’s now bathing in the bath tub.  She loves to kick and splash in the water.  A couple of weeks ago she got a super bad rash all over so we’re giving her nightly baths now, and she loves it!

She loves different textures.  She puts her little hands on everything and just feels the different materials.

She’s officially in size 2 diapers!

She prefers rolling over on her left arm, but now goes both ways.

She has a little giggle, and is making lots of new sounds and pitches.

As much as I hate not being part of her day 100% of the time, I’m happy she gets daddy/daughter alone time with her dad while I’m at work.  (I think Chris and Helena really enjoy it too.)

Baby girl is definitely eating more.  And because of this she is now pooping more too!  She used to only poop about once a week…now it’s almost daily!

She's pushing herself up on her arms more when she is on her tummy.

She does really good at the gym daycare, and am so happy I can drop her off, know that she is well cared for, and get a workout in.

She is changing daily, and sometimes I just want to freeze time.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Oh Happy Day

Yesterday was Chris' birthday!  We had a great time celebrating him, and I'm so incredibly happy he was born!
Earlier in the month when my mom was here I planned a special early birthday surprise.  Last year before we found out we were expecting and before Chris lost his job, we had planned date nights throughout the whole year.  And one of those date night were to attend a cooking class.  Well after the job was lost, and the expecting human was on its way, we never got to a lot of our date nights.  So I took the opportunity of my mom being in town and Chris' upcoming birthday to plan this special night out.
We went to Stir Cooking School.  It was a lot of fun!  On the menu?  All things Hatch Green Chile!  It was delicious.  Plus I actually wanted to learn how to cook with hatch green chile.  Considering I'm from New Mexico, this is a food that I had never previously cooked with.  Horrible, right?!  ...I've always been more of a red chile gal myself, though.  Anyways.  We peeled and chopped the chiles, and made:
hatch chile cornbread
hatch chile chicken enchiladas
yukon gold bacon and hatch chile gratin
shrimp and hatch chile quesadillas
plus we had fresh salsa and chips to snack on.
It was a super fun night, and the place itself was a lot of fun.  I hope one day we can go back!  
who doesn't love a heart shaped potato?
His actual birthday was pretty low key.  I had checked the mail the day before, and there were a handful of cards for him.  So I put those out with his gifts before he got up.  So they were waiting for him first thing.
Helena and I sang him Happy Birthday and he opened up his gifts.

Helena helped of course!

That afternoon we went on a nice long walk, then we tried a new sushi place for dinner, Zen Bistro and Sushi.  We really liked it.  Good food, strong drinks, and great service!  We're learning that with the right preparations we can pretty much bring Helena anywhere, which makes it rather easy for us to go out.  Most of the times she's such an easy going little girl, and she let us enjoy Chris' birthday dinner out.

Yesterday extended the celebration.  Late morning Helena had her pictures being taking down in the DTC (Denver Tech Center - way down south compared to where we live), so the morning was occupied with outfit changes and smiling (for the most part).  Afterwards I made reservations at Lola for lunch/brunch.  Chis had taken me here when I was 38 weeks pregnant, and it was fantastic, and since we would be driving through downtown on our way back home, I decided we should go again.  This go round wasn't as great, but Helena was a trouper as she slept during most of the meal.
We arrived back home for a couple of hours, and for Helena to take a more significant nap, just to take her out again.  This time to Boulder.  My Aunt Deanna was in town visiting her daughter, my cousin Cheryl, who lives in Fort Collins.  We had dinner at Zolo Grill, and had a great time visiting with my family.
Overall I think Chris had a good birthday.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

August Goal

just a cute picture of today: happy first full day of Autumn!
I had a goal for the month of August.  Besides having extra cuddle and love time with my daughter, the main reason I took 16 weeks of maternity leave is to get Helena on a schedule for my return to work.  Of course the “normal” maternity leave time is 12 weeks (bless those mom’s who return after 8 or even 6 weeks!), I felt very fortunate when my boss and employer agreed to give me an extended 4 weeks of a “leave of absence” to extent my leave to total of 16 weeks. 
From the very beginning I knew that going from 3 months to 4 months I would be able to implement more of a schedule.  Wake up at “X” time, feed, nap etc…  Not so fast.  Here we are nearing the end of September and Helena is on her own schedule.  Which is fine.  We definitely take cues from Helena, but there are times when I wish her schedule was a little bit more determined.  If that even makes sense?  Friday and Saturday for example were total crazy days.  It’s difficult when I know she is sleepy and tired, but she won’t take a nap.  On Friday she was up all day, to finally take a nap at 6:30pm…and she slept for 3 hours!  Needless to say she didn’t go to bed until almost midnight!  Similar to Saturday, she just wouldn’t take a nap.  Granted she did take a short cat nap in the car, or she’ll “sleep” while she's feeding on the boob, but unless I can be productive I don’t classify it has a nap!  J 
I will say that most days she does have a predictable schedule.  Morning nap/afternoon nap.  It’s the days when we are out and about that interrupt her schedule the most.  So how are we suppose to live life?  In addition to this, how do we transition her from napping in her swing to napping in her crib?  She’s goes out perfectly fine in her crib when it is her bedtime.  But she won’t have anything to do with it for her naptime. 
I guess I just feel bad for not being successful at putting her on a schedule during those last 4 weeks of maternity leave.  I of course, loved the extra time with my daughter, but I definitely failed at what I set out to do.
Yesterday and today she was a rock star.  She definitely adhered to her "schedule" and took her naps at the appropriate times...she even slept in her crib during naptime today! (proud mommy moment even though I wasn't home to witness this great accomplishment.)  But it's must more difficult when we want to be out and about.
Any tips on how to get her on a little bit more stricter schedule?  Or getting her to sleep in her crib?  I would truly appreciate your ideas!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Four Months

turning 4 months means getting new toys!  she's isn't quiet tall enough, but she loves it!

waiting for the doctor

vaccines = fussy and tired baby = extra cuddle time with Mom!
Helena turned four months old on Wednesday!  We brought out a new toy to celebrate!  I feel beyond blessed to have this little bundle in my life.  She is such a joy and I fall more in love with her everyday.

Height: 24 5/8 90%
Weight: 11 pounds 12 ounces 25%
Head: 15 3/4 50%

She's a beautiful growing baby girl!  When my in-laws were in town over Labor Day, Mary mentioned that we weren't feeding Helena enough.  In my gut I couldn't help to agree.  By no means are we starving her, and she's always content, I just think we can give her more.  The main issue with this is my supply.  I just don't have enough to give.  So we've upped the formula, and now that I'm back to work we've started using the frozen milk we have.  Plus since I'm no longer pumping for the purpose to freeze them, we have more milk in general since we aren't freezing it.  The system is still too new, but so far so good.  Her pediatrician also recommend that we put in an additional feeding.  With the increase in milk and one more feeding, I hope baby girl can start to gain a little bit more weight!

Her big happenings over the past month were rolling over.  The pediatrician gave us the official ok for her sleeping on her tummy, just as long as we put her down on her back (which we always do). 
She found her toes!  I haven't snapped a picture of it yet, but she's just so cute with her playing with her feet and a toe in her mouth!
When we bottle feed her she tries to hold up the bottle.
She wants to sit up so bad.  When we lay her on her back she'll hold up her head and try and try...someday soon, I'm sure it'll happen.
She loves to talk.  Our conversations are so much fun.
She's still in size 3 month clothes, but size 6 month pajamas because of the length.  Some size 3 months are definitely getting tight, it just depends on the brand.  She's still in size 1 diaper, but I'm thinking once we're done with the size 1's that we have, we'll try a size 2.   
As for me, I've got this horrible milk blister on my left boob.  It's super painful, and it just sucks.  Especially since my left side is my "high supplier" and makes more than my right.  This caused my first ever clogged duct last week while I was at work - of course!  It was so sensitive.  Thankfully it wasn't major and I worked it out that night.

Baby girl had another round of vaccines today.  She definitely handled it better this time 'round (I wish I could say the same about myself!), and she was super talkative this afternoon after a short morning nap.  But then she was super fussy.  I think she was just uber tired.  We plan to have a super low key weekend!