Thursday, October 23, 2014

Morning Routine



This is part two of "Morning Routine." Read this one first.

I wake up to the little grunts and sounds that my 7 week old is learning to make. Sometimes he's already crying and sometimes he's just struggling to get his hands out of his sleep sack so he can suck on his fingers. I roll over and with my eyes only half open and check the time - earlier than I was hoping - we're not sleeping through the night yet. My back aches as I twist up and out of bed, grab a drink of water, and make my way to the bassinet at the foot of our bed.

 It's early morning and this little one's clock seems to want to stay awake for a while. I bring him back into bed and hold him close as he nurses and stares above my head- at the blinds on the window behind me. As he drifts off to sleep I wonder if it will wake him up if I try to go make a cup of coffee - now only decaf so his sleep isn't interrupted. After I make sure he's really asleep, I try to carefully climb out of bed without disturbing him in my arms, but he's awake. I carry him into the kitchen and put on a pot of hot water for my French press as he fusses and looks around the kitchen in the morning light. While trying to eat a bowl of cereal and juggle a baby at the same time, I think about how one of these days, he'll be on a regular schedule, and I might be able to sit at my computer, in a house I cleaned myself, and be able to check in and stay up to day, and not have to sneak a quick post in during one of only two or three twenty minute naps that happen during the day. Instead, I scarf down my cereal, and make my decaf coffee and carefully carry my coffee cup and my baby boy into the living room where I set the coffee down and play and rock and love my little guy and forget about my coffee until an hour later when it's cold.

 My mind works faster than my day allows for it, ideas float around my head as I bounce around with my little guy in his Moby wrap. I cherish the time I spend with him, I examine the curves of his face and I'm in awe at how much he's grown. I sip my cold coffee in between coos and peek-a-boos, and if he decides to sit in his rocker for a bit, I might get up to warm it up. But if I do, chances are it will get cold again, very quickly. 

These mornings are slow and fast all at once. Sometimes they're quiet and sweet and full of smiles and my heart melting with each one. And sometimes full of cries and soothing and my heart breaking when I can't figure out what's wrong.  They are full of things that didn't get done, dishes in the sink, mail that needs to be sorted, laundry to be folded. But they are short-lived. It blows my mind when I think these mornings of my life are moving so quickly and soon I might have more of a routine, but he'll be crawling and I'll miss him terribly when I'm back at work. I relish in the moments and soak them in, and then I even when he's sleeping and I might get something done, sometimes I just watch him some more because, well, because for right now, I can. 

XO

Monday, October 20, 2014

Becoming that cliche

"Your life will never be the same after kids," "you won't be able to relate to your old friends anymore," "suddenly the most exciting thing in your day will be if your baby pooped and what color it was."  I've heard all sorts of things about what being a new parent would be like. People telling me how I would think and feel, what things would be interesting to me after my baby was born. I remember thinking they don't know me, that's not how it's going to be.  

And then I had my baby boy.



Flash forward... E and I are out for the first "big outing" with family and friends. We've run into an old friend we haven't seen in years. The niceties pass; the questions progress, "how's it going?," "what are you up to?," and "WOW, you have a baby!," and 5 minutes later I feel like I'm grasping at straws to fill in those awkward lulls that keep creeping up into our conversation.  E and I so badly want to say, "Our baby is smiling now when you tickle his neck!" and "he just LOVES staring at the blinds!" because these really are the things that make our day. I'd even slip in a "he hasn't pooped since Wednesday so we're expecting a blow out soon..." but I don't. We don't because we don't want to be THAT cliche couple that only talks about their baby. 

But that's who we are, I guess. That's all that's going on in our lives and it's just so good, that's all we really do want to talk about. We are THOSE people. I'm sorry if that means you'll want to avoid talking to us for a while. I'm sorry if you have trouble trying to relate. But really, I'm sorry that I'm not really sorry about it. I love being a mommy. We love being parents. And these moments are fleeting. I want to catch/remember/share every moment possible because each one is so precious. So I'm sorry (but not really) if you didn't want to know, but he did finally poop three days later, and it was the highlight of our day. 

XO

Thursday, October 9, 2014

One Month




 Before you have kids, you have some idea of how quickly time passes. It seems to speed up a little bit every year. When you do have kids, you finally understand what your parents meant when they would say, "time flies," because it really does. In it's own strange way, time passes quickly and still seems to drag on. What's that saying? The minutes last days and the days last minutes.  That person had kids.

Our little boy is one month old. I thank God that he's healthy and home with us now. I've been struggling to figure out what to blog about and struggling to actually find time to sit down at my computer for more than 2 minutes to actually type something.  I realized that the time passes too quickly to plan out the pinterest-perfect blog post. This is our life, our little boy.

At one month:
Arek is smiling when you tickle under his neck and brush a blanket over his face
He's eating like a champ and grew 3 lbs since his last appointment
He loves falling asleep in daddy's arms
His favorite song is the ABC's
His best friends are the blinds on the windows - he'll just stare and stare at them. Mesmerized
He holds up his head so well - we're all impressed with how strong he is.

We're so excited to keep watching him grow and soak up every minute of life with him. Because really, what was life like without him?

XO

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Baby Arek


It's almost been month since this little bundle joined our lives. I can't even begin to describe the love that I, that we, have for this little boy. He is just the sweetest ever. It was a bumpy journey in the beginning, but it was our journey. I'm still letting it all process in my head and hope to get his whole birth story written out, and maybe shared on here in the next week or so. It's hard to believe it's been almost a whole month since he came into our lives, and I can hardly imagine what our lives were like without him.

Right now he's nestled in his rocker next to me, dreaming away. And while I can still tell he's the same baby in the picture above, he's grown so much. We're really in for it with all the changes and growing that are to come, but we're so excited for it all.

Baby Arek, Mommy and Daddy (and everyone else) love you to the moon and back!

XO

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Labor Cake


"It's a BUNDT...T"
"THERE'S A HOLE IN THIS CAKE!"

Well, I'm posting this up from the comfort of my home office, so clearly, this didn't work. Or I didn't eat enough. One or the other. BUT! If you are looking for an amazingly moist and gooey chocolate cake recipe - look no further. It's rich and decadent and takes a simple box cake to a whole new level.

I found the recipe here when searching "labor cake"on Pinterest. I figured, the baby is due, and I'm not in labor. Best case scenario: I learn what contractions really feel like and maybe finally get to meet my little man. Worst case scenario: I get to eat some yummy chocolate cake. It's pretty much a win:win situation, don't you think?

I don't really believe that anything you do or eat is going to kick start labor. Baby Boy is going to make his appearance when he is ready, and I am learning to be OK with that. I also don't think that a chocolate overdose is going to do a darn thing to my uterus to jump start this. But I'm starting to get a little restless at home bouncing on my exercise ball all day and baking a cake was the perfect diversion for a good part of my day. Cleaning up the dishes afterward, however, was not.

So here it is: LABOR CAKE - or Labor Day Cake - if you need a recipe to take to that potluck this weekend!

  • 1 box of chocolate cake mix (I used Betty Crocker Butter Chocolate Cake)
  • All the ingredients the box mix requires: usually water and eggs, maybe oil or butter
  • 1 package of chocolate instant pudding mix (I guess if you wanted to get creative you could try a different flavor)
  • 1 cup of sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cups of chocolate chips
Mix all of the ingredients in a large bowl until smooth. Pour into a greased bundt pan and cook for about 45-50 minutes at 350 degrees F, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  

You can also make this as a sheet cake or in rounds, but the cook time will vary. 

If you are making a bundt, I used the same website's recipe for the glaze, sans the vanilla extract (because I forgot). If you're making a sheet cake or rounds, you can use canned frosting or another recipe. 
  • 1/2 cups cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 sticks of butter
  • 1/2 cup milk (I used almond milk because it's what we had)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
In a sauce pan heat all the ingredients together until smooth. Continue to stir until it thickens slightly. Remove from heat and allow to stand. It will thicken up a bit more. When it's the desired consistency, drizzle over the tops of your bundt cake for that extra chocolate rush that might just make your belly contract! 

Enjoy! And if anyone DOES go into labor from this cake, either don't tell me because I'll get frustrated, or tell me it was because you ate the whole darn thing. I had to stop at one piece because it's so rich and delicious. Baby Boy liked the sugar rush too, he was moving around all night. Just not moving out yet.

XO


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Due Date!


Today's the day! It's been marked on my calendar since January and we've been counting down ever since. Every time I really think about it and realize that this is the last week of August, and here it is, and soon there's going to be a baby here and my belly won't be his home anymore, but he'll be in his room (or our room) and be a part of this family, it totally blows my mind. 

That being said, today is really just another day on the calendar, and Baby Boy has no idea how to tell time yet. He's not showing any signs of interest in coming out and joining us in celebration any time soon.  I'm happy to let him cook til he is ready, but I'd really like to meet him. I'd also really like to avoid discussions of inductions and c-sections at the next doctor's appointment.  Last week they said he'd had a growth spurt and was starting to measure a little on the big side (typical...he gets that from my side of the family and our big babies), so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that he'll decide to make an appearance on his own before he gets too big!

So we're still waiting. Every time I get up from sitting I think, "maybe my water will break," and every time I feel my back start to ache or a pain under my belly I think, "maybe this is the first contraction." It's a trip not knowing what the heck your body is going to do and when, especially for someone who is typically really in tune with what her body is trying to say.  But, I guess that's just the first lesson in parenting and motherhood coming my way. 

As E pointed out to me last night, whether he comes tomorrow or he comes next week, it's all soon at this point. He'll be here soon. 

XO

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Avocado harvest

We have an old avocado tree in our back yard. It's been there for years and years and has almost given up on itself a few times. When we first moved in there were only a few leaves, and peeling bark, and dead branches. E trimmed it up and we've been giving it love and lots of water and we're thinking it's on the mend. The leaves grow only to one side because of the branches it lost, but if you look inside, tucked away in the big branches, you'll find the lovely green fruit.




We were out in the garden yesterday and were excited to see that they're full grown!  The funny thing we learned about this tree is that the avocados won't really ripen on their own. You have to pick them and ripen them in a brown bag.  They stay green, and their skins are thin, but they are silky and creamy and delicious. We picked 10 BIG avocados for now and there are still more to come.  So looking forward to guac and fresh avo on toast in the mornings!

XO