Aiden: Six Months

Friday, February 26, 2016

HALF A YEAR?? WHAT?? Holy cow, time slow down. I spend my days simultaneously wanting time to speed up because I'm so excited about the little person she's becoming and wanting time to completely stop because I'm obsessed with my tiny babe.

"Excuse me, Mr. Lambie? I'm HOW OLD?"

Pretty accurate picture of her these days. Those hands are always in her mouth!

Month six has been such a joy!

  • She loves her crib. We put her down around 7:00 - 7:30pm and she sleeps until at least 7:00am. (Consecutively sleeping for 12 hours? That sounds too good to be true! It is. She still gets up every 3-4 hours to eat throughout the night.) Adam and I certainly enjoy our couple baby-free hours each night, though!
  • We've gotten into more of a routine these days. She's up for 1.5 hours, then sleeps for 45min - 1 hour, then we start it all over again. Of course, more often than not we stray from that schedule due to life getting in the way, but it's nice to have something in place. (Of course, if she's at Grandma's then she naps for like three hours in her magical swing.)
  • She loves to be naked. If she could spend all day in just a diaper, she would most definitely be 100% ok with that. 
  • She loves to roll from her back to her belly, but for the longest time refused to even try rolling back over. Which meant a lot of frustrated whining and Adam and I flipping her back over. Just this past weekend, she seems to have mastered rolling from her belly to her back. Yahoooo!
  • She found her feet and loves to grab them and put them in her mouth. We call it baby yoga, and I think it's just about the cutest thing, ever.
  • She also loves to chew her fingers. Every once in awhile she'll find her thumb and start sucking, which is too adorable for words.
  • We set up her highchair a couple weeks ago, since she's so close to sitting up. She loves to sit in there (or her Bumbo) and watch us, play with toys and be all around adorable.
  • She's been so interested in our food and drinks, and although our pediatrician recommended waiting until six months to give her anything but milk, we decided to let her start drinking a little water here and there. If she's in a fussy mood, it's a great way to distract her! I'm not confident she's actually even getting water, but it's hilarious to watch her try to drink it.
  • We tried to hold off until six months to give her food, but caved the night before her half birthday. She had avocados and LOVED them! I put a video of her first taste in the links below.
  • Speaking of milk, I started supplementing with formula on February 8. (Can you tell she's our first child? I documented the day she first had formula.) I really wanted to make it to six months of exclusive breastfeeding, but I'll be out of town March 1-3 (don't remind me), and was stressing myself out trying to figure out how to pump enough for her. I already can't keep up with her when I pump during work hours. We only do 1-2 bottles of formula while she's with Grandma or Nonna, and I still only breastfeed her when she's with me. As you can imagine, she couldn't care less and has had zero adverse reactions. This mother's guilt thing is so real. Before we tried the formula, I called my pediatrician, explained the situation and said "Basically, I just need someone to tell me this is ok." 
  • The dreaded day finally came. I cut her finger with the fingernail clippers. It didn't bother her a bit, but goodness I didn't realize fingers bled so much! It looked like a mini crime scene in our living room.
  • We went down to the neighborhood playground and she went swinging for the first time! She loved it and kept flashing this really shy smile. Like she was embarrassed to be having fun. Oh, my heart.
  • Her hair is so insanely floofy and sticks straight up. I DIE. Seriously. It's the cutest thing in the whole world.
  • She's started reaching for Adam and me when someone else is holding her and she gives hugs (not on command). My heart melts into a big puddle every time.
Her six month appointment went great (minus those yucky - but oh, so necessary - shots). She's weighing in at 15lbs 2oz and is 26" long!

Six month cuteness overload:
First time trying water
First time attempting a straw
Her new pony trick

Overall she is such a HAPPY baby these days! We are soaking in every minute and don't understand how our hearts can handle so much love.

I Bless the Rains Down in Africa

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

I've never really understood that lyric, but ever since Kelsey left (and Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell made a music video to it) I can't get that song out of my head.

Moving on...Kelsey is in Africa! She's been there over a month (oh my gosh), and I can't believe it's taken me this long to write about it. Of course, she'll be there until December so I guess time is on my side in this case.

Kelsey's journey to get to Africa is the first time I've firsthand witnessed God's plan playing out, and it still makes my head spin. You can read her whole testimony here, but I'll also give you my two cents. Because you asked for it, right?

Kelsey is a total homebody. The only thing she loves more than her family is Jesus. I could not get my head around the fact that she was going to Africa for 11 months... on purpose! She's been talking about Africa since she was a little girl, and while (being her sister-in-law) I only know a small part of her journey, it truly blows my mind. God has been setting this up since the beginning of time, and made sure everything fell perfectly into place to get her where she needs to be. I guess that's why I'm so excited for her. God has been planning this forever! Can you imagine what He's going to accomplish through her?!

Follow her African journey here:

She had a little farewell gathering the weekend before she left, and we all took time to pray for her and her journey. Look at all these people praying! I love it.

Playing with her favorite nephew and niece before the big departure..

Her last American snapchat! (Is it creepy I screen-shotted this? Probably.)

Just minutes before she left for the airport.  I can't believe Aiden will be 15 months old the next time she holds her! Thanks to the fabulous, technological (is that a word?) world we live in - we are able to FaceTime with her every once in awhile!

Debbie and Dave took her to the airport, and sent this photo when she was officially off and headed through security. I still get teary when I look at it. What an amazing woman she is. I can't wait to see what Jesus does through her and the people in South Africa!

A New Lent

Thursday, February 18, 2016

I was scrolling through old posts this morning trying to remember what I've given up for Lent over the past few years. Ever since I was little it was always something food-related. I didn't understand the true (or even a small, remote) meaning of Lent, but my family always did it. It was the one time a year I had will power - I can't recall a time that I've ever cheated on my "Lent diet". Thanks to Adam's encouragement (and education), I've done better over the past few years of giving up something a little less shallow than food, but I still wasn't really grasping the real reason behind Lent.

Since I started this blog, it looks like I've given up using the word "hate", Facebook (and cheese and bread) and tried the Paleo diet. Last year I didn't give anything up because I was pregnant and figured I got a free pass. (I certainly could have done something while I was pregnant.  Oh, well. Next time.) Up until the past few months I didn't really grasp the true meaning of Lent. In reality, I'm supposed to give up a vice with the thought that whenever I craved it I would then be reminded of Jesus and all of his goodness and sacrifices. Also, to mimic the forty days Jesus spent fasting. 

Now that I've had my own teaching moment, I realize that I didn't actually give anything up this year, either. UGH. WHEN WILL I FIGURE THIS OUT?? 2017 will be my year, people.

However, I'm pretty excited about what I'm doing for Lent this year. I have a daily devotional that I fell in love with last year, Jesus Calling. Each day's devotional was inspired by a couple bible verses, which the author conveniently put at the bottom of each page. This year, I'm reading my devotional, looking up the bible verses, spending some quiet time with my man JC, and then journaling about it in my Live Life Beautifully journal Debbie got me last year. 

Meet Team Lent.

My biggest struggle on this whole Christian walk I'm on is I have a hard time just being still and spending time with Jesus. It's truly all He wants from us. And while it sounds so simple, it doesn't come naturally to me. My mind wanders. I forget that I was trying to accomplish something by being still. I grab my phone without realizing it. It's hard. Stillness is a struggle. I figure the forty days of Lent will [hopefully] get me in the habit of setting aside time to just BE.

Maybe I actually am giving something up. Giving up my time for Him. At the end of the day, it's His time anyway. Why can't I spend a small chunk of it in His presence? Seems like a simple concept. 

February Fun

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Since my whole Come To Jesus declaration at the beginning of the year, I've kind of been slacking on here. Up until now this blog has mostly been used an online picture book. And I'm slowly having to break myself of that habit every time I pull up this website.

Today is not that day. I give you… more pictures from 2016.

Aiden and I joined our gals for brunch at Parish and a walk on the BeltLine. It was a gorgeous day!

We headed up to Gainesville to see Kirklan and his little bundle. Hayden is almost three months older than Aiden. Look how cute he is with his hand on her shoulder!

The reason we headed up to Gainesville was for Dallas' baby shower. Can't wait to meet sweet Madelyn!

AND that night we attended Team Hidi 4.0. It was a LONG day.

Now we'll move on to the embarrassing amount of Aiden pictures…

"Mom, I have no toys. I'm so bored."

Her first time swinging! Her friend Finleigh was also down there. Can't wait to see how these girls play when they're a little older.

She loved it! I took a little video (click here). I can hardly stand her sweet smile.

She's decided to be a tummy sleeper (sometimes).

Hahah, I love this picture. She looks like a little person!

Beauty by AG. Now taking appointments!

Cutest elephant I ever did see.

She is such a HAPPY baby!!

Super Bowl 2016 = Baby Bowl 2016

I went to get her after her nap, and this is what I found. How did that even happen??

If she's not asleep, she hates being in her carseat when we're in stores. And she's not a huge fan of the Moby Wrap unless she's sleepy. After one too many meltdowns at Target where I had to carry her and push/turn the cart with my hip, I decided to breakout her shopping cart cover and barricade her in. She LOVED it. She was too busy looking around to even smile for a picture.

Who is this big baby?!

Her Mardi Gras 2016 photo shoot. Thank you to Maggie and Michael (her Godparents) for the amazing onesie!

I love this picture. It sums up her stage of life right now. Interested in everything.

Such a joy!

THIS PICTURE. I love that little face of hers.

My neighbor, Anne, started a little book club. We kicked it off Tuesday night with some bubbly and King Cake. Look forward to starting Accidental Saints.

Morning yoga!

Juliet and Joelle came to stay with Debbie and Dave, and Aiden was enthralled with them! Juliet is four and she was just a full of energy and hilarious. She put on a show for us Friday night and we were all crying from laughing so hard.

Cuddles with Papabear!

This is what bathtubs are for, right? Watching mom get ready?

Little Bear!

AG's first (of many, many, many) baseball games! Adam is coaching for King's Academy this year, so we braved the cold (very cold) to watch their first game.

We decided to put together her highchair, since she'll be starting solids soon. Doesn't she look like a baby dictator here?? Haha. She LOVES being in just a diaper. I'm pretty sure she would roll around naked all day, if she could.

And there's your Baker roundup. Just in time, because I hear a little someone waking up in her crib.

My baby truth

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Ok, I feel like I need to clear something up about having a baby - or at least my experience. Leading up to the birth, everything you hear is about this instant love. How your heart feels like it's going to burst into a billion pieces the moment you lay eyes on your babe. After 48 hours of labor and 1.5 hours of pushing, "love" isn't exactly the word I would use to describe those first feelings. I like using the word "surreal". That's what it felt like to me. I could not believe this beautiful baby had just come out of me. I could not believe that after 9 long months of waiting, she was here. I could not believe I was finally meeting my daughter and seeing her for the first time. I remember staring at her and just thinking "WOW, hi!" Stunned is another word I would use to describe it. It's just so foreign. There is nothing you can do to prep yourself for the moment you meet your child, and sometimes when I looked back I felt like a failure for not feeling that instant love right away. Then I started reading blogs about women who felt the same way. I think this is probably a totally common way to feel, but society today makes us feel like we MUST feel this love IMMEDIATELY or we're just the worst humans, ever. I read something recently that I loved..."The life you see here on social media isn't reality, it's everyone's highlight reel." Now that is some TRUTH, people.

The announcement I put on social media even said something about "we're so in love" - because that's just what everyone says after they have a baby. (Let me look up exactly what I said.... "We are so in love and totally in awe of God's miracles.") I'm pretty sure I crafted the caption before she was even born (oh my gosh, I'm so embarrassing). We immediately were (and still are) totally in awe of God for creating this perfect little human, but "so in love" was stretching it when we were only a few hours in. I'm going to rewrite it now....

"We are in a foggy state of surrealness that we created this baby, waited 9 months for her, and pushed her into this world (after going through quite a lengthy and painful labor). We need a couple days to catch our breath and soak her in. We'll be back with a verdict soon. In the meantime, here's a picture. Also, God is so real. That's apparent by looking at our daughter who is here and breathing and crying and perfect. WHAT'S GOING ON??"

Now, in the hours/days/weeks/months since her birth I have experienced that overwhelming love. It truly is overwhelming and indescribable, and I don't understand how my love for her grows exponentially every single day. There are no words to describe the love a parent feels for their child. I tell Adam all the time that I'm nervous about (God willing) having more kids. HOW in the world is there room in my heart for anyone else?? But I hear this too is a totally normal thought, and apparently it happens because there are lots of second, third, fourth children in this world. You guysssss, I really don't know how hearts handle this!

People ask me all the time "What's the most surprising thing about being a mom?" I love this question (and I think it's a great one!). I always have the same answer... I always heard about how tired I'll be and how I won't get any sleep for the rest of my life. I didn't hear about how when I'm up in the middle of the night feeding/snuggling my sweet baby, I just stare down at her and feel so much love and pride that it hurts. All she wants is to be close to me (or her daddy). She is 100% dependent on us, and we gladly answer that call. Don't get me wrong, there are nights when I am thisclose to losing it and I hand her off to Adam or have to put her in her crib and sit on my bed to collect my sanity. But for the most part, it's just love. (Disclaimer: I really don't know how single moms do it. I know they somehow do, and they are my new heroes. Being a parent is HARD with an amazing support system - I can't imagine doing this without one.)

Anyway, that's my story about how that real love grew (very, very fast!), but certainly wasn't immediate. I know I'm not alone in this.

Here's a picture of the source of that love. I could seriously EAT her. (Apparently that's a totally normal thought to have, too.)