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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Baby Workout

We got out the play mat for the first time last week - it seems to be a big hit with sweet Caroline! And Catherine Ellis - I think I've mentioned before that she likes to revert back to the old days when she was a wee one and play alongside her baby sister - sure makes for interesting play times most days:)

Here are some pictures from Caroline's first adventure on the play mat - she was having such a good time that even her Daddy decided to get in on the fun before big sister joined in as well:

Wow, this is a lot of stuff to look at ....

Playing with Daddy

Giving Daddy a kiss ...

Amazed at the flashing lights that also play music

I love newborn expressions - it makes me wonder what is going through their tiny mind!

I also captured a bit of video from when big sister joined us fresh out of the tub - not the greatest cinematography - but a glimpse of how much Catherine Ellis loves playing with Caroline:

Sunday, June 26, 2011

6 weeks

Sweet Caroline is 6 weeks old today - say it ain't so! She is starting to be more alert during the days - which is fun. Catherine Ellis really loves it because it means she has more opportunities to interact with her. Happy 6 weeks sweet girl - what joy you bring to our family!

6 weeks - Sunday, June 26, 2011

Here are some things you've been up to in your sixth week of life:
  • you are more alert these days - you will stay awake almost an hour after eating some times.
  • the ceiling fan is a big hit with you - your sister loved it too (think all babies do!)
  • you LOVE the changing table - that seems to be the only place we can get you calm sometimes - works like a charm.
  • your tummy issues are still around - you are having more good days though - so that has been nice. We've just about ruled everything out with the doctor and have come to the conclusion that you have colic. Your crying spells are generally at night from 6-10 p.m. We understand that time will heal and that by the time you're 3-4 months it will go away. We sure hope so for your sake (and ours!).
  • you are still eating well - during the day you can go a bit longer - sometimes 3 1/2 to 4 hour stretches and at night you still do fabulous - pulling stretches that last sometime between 5-7 hours.
  • you sleep well at night for the most part - we swaddle you which helps, but you still have one long stretch (5-7 hours) followed by a shorter one (3-4 hours) which means oftentimes I only have to get up once during the night (if you don't count 4-5 a.m. as night time)
  • you tried the play mat for the first time this week - and seem to like it - you kick around and make all kinds of noises.
  • your Godmother came to visit you this week - Caroline Flory - she thinks you are precious just like we do:)
  • we are working on smiling - you seem like you're on the verge and we're super excited about that
Catherine Ellis, 26 months & Caroline, 6 weeks

I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made ~
Psalm 139:14

Friday, June 24, 2011

A little trim ...

Aunt B also visited last week (told you we had a busy and fun-filled week!) and spent some time with us girls - it was so good to see her! We always love a visit from our greats - Uncle Chip was not able to join us this time, but we know we'll see him soon!

Catherine Ellis was way overdue for a trim - Aunt B used to cut my hair when I was a little girl - so we took the opportunity to put her hair cutting skills to work and she trimmed Catherine Ellis's hair - it looks much better:) Thank you Aunt B! Come visit us again soon!

In bad need of a trim ...

Sitting still for Aunt B

Looking good

She really is thrilled about her hair - doesn't it look better?

Being silly with Aunt B!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Just us girls ...

I decided to keep Catherine Ellis home from school on Tuesday because I've missed her so much! That's been one of the hardest parts of the transition for me .... not getting to spend time with her. To go from riding to and from school every morning and evening, story time, the occasional bath time and weekends filled with toddler fun, to 30-45 minutes a day has been hard - for both of us. However, as with anything time has helped and we're adjusting! But, I still miss my sweet girl - so she played hooky today and we had a great time with some great friends!

Amy and Lindsay are friends from Auburn and they both have little ones that are almost the exact same age as Catherine Ellis and Caroline - so we had a play date today at Miss Hayes's house - and boy was it fun! Hayes has quite the playroom and lots of room to run around and play - the girls had a blast! And the tiny siblings were not left out - they all range from 16 weeks to 2 weeks and they got to spend some time getting to know one another as they slept and hung out in their car seats and bouncy seats this morning :) Thank you for hosting Hayes and Amy! We can't wait to do it again!

The youngest playmates: L to R - Elizabeth, 2 weeks/Watson, 16 weeks
/Caroline, 5 weeks

Caroline (big sister to Elizabeth) and Catherine Ellis brewing tea

Cooking up a storm in the kitchen

Sweet baby Caroline playing hard :)

Sweet friends: L to R - Catherine Ellis, Hayes and Caroline

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Sweet Meme

Thank goodness for Mamas - can I get a loud amen?? I would not be surviving these newborn days and nights if it weren't for the support of my Mama. Mamas just know how to make it all better! My mother came up last Monday to help with sweet Caroline and what a blessing - thank you so much Mama! Not only did she give me several breaks, she kept me company, listened, took Catherine Ellis to and from school, made lots of ice for us, took our recycling and washed and folded lots of clothes and many other things! What a treat! Thank you Mama for all the support - I love you!

Meme and Caroline have quite the time together - they sure are fond of each other! And Catherine Ellis loves to cut up with her Meme - Meme's a good sport:) Here are some pictures from our week with Meme:

Meme feeding sweet Caroline - yummy!

Hugging Meme

Being a newborn is hard work!

Align LeftCuddling with Meme

Meme and Catherine Ellis before riding to school

Thank you Mama for keeping us together last week - we don't know what we'd do without you - it takes a village indeed!

Mother's love is peace.
It need not be acquired, it need not be deserved.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

5 weeks

Sweet Caroline was five weeks on Sunday! Can't believe we are nearing the end of June. Sweet baby girl is having a terrible time with her tummy still. I can no longer pretend like it's not a huge issue - she's pretty miserable anytime she's awake. She's constantly trying to push gas out and spends most of her time awake in pain screaming and crying .... her tummy just gurgles and gurgles - it's so very, very sad.

I've been to the lactation consultants and have talked with her doctor's nurse several times now. Last week they decided it was reflux - I did not and still do not think it's reflux - after a week of being on Zantac we've not seen any improvement - so as of today she's off of it. There is one more thing - probiotics- that we are going to try and see if it will give her some relief. Please pray for her. She's so tiny and can't cope and is in pain - not fun for her or any of us.

But, even if this is a really hard time we're still finding joy in this precious little girl - here are some things she's been up to at 5 weeks:

  • you are nursing better - we've figured out some of our issues and you're still eating well - weighed in at 9.4 lbs last Monday - a baby your age is typically 8.6 lb - our sweet little piggy!
  • you take a bottle well now - Mommy needed to get some things under control with her milk production and you ended up taking to the bottle finally - like a champ:)
  • you continue to be taken with your sister and let her hold you and give you your passy etc. You don't fuss much when she's 'taking care of her baby'
  • you are enjoying your morning walks with Mommy and sleep most of the time
  • you can hold your little sweet round head up - you just bob it all over the place
  • you love baths - it seems to calm you
  • you are more alert and not napping as well - but Mommy is working hard to get the napping back on track
  • you still typically only get up once a night to eat - you go down somewhere between 10 -11 p.m. and are up around 3-4 a.m. for your night feeding. We rise in the mornings somewhere between 7:00 - 8:00 a.m. - oftentimes this depends greatly on how cooperative your big sister is and how minimal/loud the morning melt-down is :)
  • you fight the swaddle like Houdini - we are using the miracle blanket swaddler now (thank you Amy!!) and it's working better - you still can figure your way out of it some nights!
Oh sweet Caroline - we love you so!! We can't wait to see how you grow and change over the next several weeks!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Father's Day

Catherine Ellis and Caroline have the BEST Daddy in the whole wide world - hands down!! David blows all other Daddy's out of the water in our humble opinion :) Here are just a few of the many, many reasons (there are too many to list here!) he is a wonderful father:

  • he has endless patience - this comes in handy most every minute of the day with a 2 year old and a quite fussy 5 week old
  • a super sense of humor - he tries to find the funny in most experiences
  • a playful personality - he loves to play like he's a little boy all over again and Catherine Ellis loves it!
  • he is constantly involving Catherine Ellis in his projects - she thinks she is such a big helper and that's because David lets her help and teaches her lots of cool things - like replacing the wheel on a lawnmower or putting together rocking chairs.
  • he can sing like nobody's business - this has proved wonders for fussy newborns and toddlers who refuse to calm down and go to sleep:)
  • he rarely complains - even if he's been up just as many times as I have in the night - he just does it and is happy to do it most days.
  • he provides for us - he makes sure we have all the essentials in life and then lots of fun extras
  • he's a Godly man - he reminds us daily that God and faith are the center of our family - Catherine Ellis will know more bible stories than me in another year:)
Caroline telling Daddy "Happy Father's Day!"

Daddy's sweet girls

A little sisterly love - Catherine Ellis, 26 months/Caroline - 5 weeks

I could go on and on - Thank you David for being a wonderful Daddy to our children - you make parenting a joy! We love you to the moon and back!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

4 Weeks

We've been busy busy the past 2 weeks - and I'm behind on the blog! So, let me catch y'all up. Week four was a really fun week for us - we had something almost every night that week! The highlight of our week was a visit from the Hendersons! Criddy is one of my best friends from Auburn - we lived in Sassnet Hall our freshman year across the hall from one another and have been buds since the fall of 1997 - man time flies when you're having fun! I moved to California with her and two other friends after Auburn - we all returned home, but Criddy fell in love and stayed in San Diego and is now married and has sweet Allie - her adorable 6 month old daughter. They were in town for her little sister's wedding and we got to spend Wednesday night with them - so much fun (and a little crazy!!). Here are some pictures of Allie and Catherine Ellis:

Catherine Ellis - 26 Months / Allie - 6 months

Catherine Ellis and Allie chewing on the puzzle pieces (CE loves reverting back to a baby!)

Enjoying the bubble machine with Mr. Mais and Allie

It was so fun to see the girls play together - and don't worry sweet Caroline was here but she slept most of the time! She'll be able to play this time next year when we get to visit with them again. Thanks for coming Criddy, Mais and Allie! We love y'all!

Saturday morning we had a little bath time with Caroline - Catherine Ellis is quite the helper and big sister - always wanting to help with sweet Caroline! I think Caroline enjoyed having her help and Catherine Ellis was DELIGHTED to help:)

Saturday afternoon we loaded up and headed to Jasper for David's 10 year high school reunion - so much fun and lots of faces that we don't get to see often ... it was wonderful to catch up with old friends and spend a little time out of the house with adults! Here are some pictures:

The boys

David and Erin

Lauren and Me

David and Keri breaking it down on the dance floor

So - sweet Caroline - what was she up to week 4:

June 12, 2011 - 4 weeks
  • still dealing with tummy issues - bless your heart. Mommy finally calls the doctor the next week.
  • You and I started walking in the mornings - we made it out 3 times!
First morning walk
  • You spent about 10 minutes outside helping Mommy plant the flower bed out front and were not fond of the mid-ninety degree weather
  • You tried out the swing for the first time and liked it!
  • You are sleeping at least one 5 hour stretch during the night - it's super!! And we are so thankful!
  • You still like to eat - you are our little piggy:)
  • You are napping and sleeping in your crib in your nursery during the day and at night now
  • You are a great traveler - the roadways make you sleep - it does your Mommy too - nothing like a car nap!

Monday, June 6, 2011

3 weeks

We started week 3 off with a bang - Caroline got to meet her Pop Pop for the first time - it was super fun to see them together! Pop sure loves his girls! Catherine Ellis also got to spend Memorial Day bossing Pop around - he loves it and she does too - they had a big time. They went for a walk, did a little swinging, went shopping and rode her 'motorcycle' (tricycle). I know Pop was exhausted when he left!

Pop Pop and his grand girls!

Pop Pop and Caroline meeting for the first time - May 30, 2011

CE and Pop Pop - she calls this her motorcycle

Then Monday night Catherine Ellis got sick with the croup and a virus and because her fever was high she had to leave us - Caroline is too tiny and couldn't run the risk of getting a fever. Catherine Ellis left Tuesday to stay with her Gran and Pop in Jasper - we missed her so much! She finally returned on Friday - free of fever, but still not feeling well - this past weekend was a challenging one to say the least - however, Caroline hasn't gotten sick so we are super thankful and Catherine Ellis finally turned a corner Sunday night and is feeling much better. Whew! What a week our third week was!

Me and CE - even sick she's cute!

We decided to try our Sunday tradition of pizza on the town for the first time last night - we headed to Davenports and it was so yummy! Caroline slept the entire time and Catherine Ellis only had one meltdown - which is stellar! Things went so well we decided we'd treat ourselves to ice cream at Mountain Brook Creamery - it's amazing what a change of scenery and fresh air will do for the soul :) We had a blast and our first outing as a family of 4 was a lot of fun!

Yummy blueberry ice cream!

So good!

Daddy sharing some of his ....

Catherine Ellis was not so sharing with hers ....

While we were out we sat next to a family with a special needs child - who was probably about 16 years old and couldn't function without an adult with her. And here I was coming off a weekend feeling down and out about having to take care of two perfectly healthy children under two. Forgive me Lord. It reminded me again of how very blessed we are to have two healthy children. Perspective. It really is what it's all about.

So, three weeks down and although it was a challenging week it was a good one too! Here is what Caroline is up to at 3 weeks:

Caroline - 3 weeks - June 5, 2011

A little awake time and some open eyes!
  • Sleeping - you're a great sleeper - during the day you typically sleep well - every other day or so we'll have a fussy day, but to be expected. At night you are a champ - we are hoping this trend will continue. You go over 4 hours between feedings and have been for several days now.
  • Tummy issues - these are much better - but you're little digestive system is still figuring it out. We have learned the trick is in burping you often during feedings. We read all this stuff about nursing babies not taking in as much air, but you take in plenty and now that we know this, it seems to be getting better.
  • Feeding - you still like to eat - my sweet little piggy:) A little girl after her mother's own heart:)
  • Stats: At your two week appointment you were 8.4 lbs and still 20 1/4 inches long. You are growing SO fast.
  • Diapers - size 1's are starting to fit a little better. The newborns are getting snug. You're still wearing newborn clothing. Even the newborn gowns are still very big on you.
  • Awake time - is still not often - you are typically awake to eat (sometimes this is hard work to get you to stay awake!) and maybe for about 10-30 minutes after eating.
  • You had your first tub bath this week!