Friday, July 5, 2013

nolan at 6 months.

I have become one of those mothers.  The mother who thinks they have the perfect, most adorable baby in the history of the world.  I used to think I was pretty honest with myself, pretty objective, that I could admit the faults of my children, but as Cole and I sat discussing over lunch how undeniably adorable (surely no one could think otherwise!) Nolan is, we realized how far gone we truly are.  We are smitten, and bias aside, he is prrretty awesome ;)  Here's why:

At 6 months he:
  • rolls over both ways
  • smiles at pretty much anything that moves (and some things that don't)
  • is wide-eyed, alert, and engaging
  • blows raspberries and smiles this goofy double-chinned grin when you do it back (total boy humor)
  • eats solids like a beast (so far three types of cereals, sweet potatoes, and squash)
  • stretches out after a feeding and smiles as I rub his belly
  • sucks his left thumb 
  • sleeps through the night (6/7 p.m. to 7/8 a.m.)
  • loves toys and gets excited to see Sophie the Giraffe
  • has a happy disposition and laughs easily
  • is a drool-monster and likes to gnaw on your fingers if they get close enough to his mouth
  • loves to watch Lily and smiles at her, even when she's not looking
  • rarely cries except when he wants to be picked up or he's rolled over onto his belly for too long
  • likes when we sing, play pat-a-cake and other "games" with him
  • likes to stand and has strong legs
  • likes to cuddle
Nicknames include:  Chubs, Chubbers, Wolen, and Noly Woly.  I love when I rub his soft chubby cheek or give him a kiss, and he'll just look straight ahead and smile this soft, little smile.  It melts my heart every time, and it's like he's saying, "I know you love me, Mom."  Happy 6 months, Nolan.  You are one special little guy, and you are absolutely right, we adore you!

a week of visitors.

We kicked off July just the way we like--with lots of visitors!  My dad and stepmom came and Lily took full advantage of having a captive (and permissive) audience present.  She wanted Papa to do everything with her and for her, and he willingly obliged.   Cole and I got spoiled with brunch at the historic Menger Hotel downtown, Magnolia Pancake Haus, Texas de Brazil, and The Gristmill (all delicious!).  Not to mention the fancy dinners my dad whipped up in our own kitchen.  We're already wasting away now that they're gone ;)

Lily got a new pool from Nana and Papa, which we put at the end of her playset outside and made a slip and slide into the pool.  Every day she rips off all her clothes and diaper and runs naked to the back door to "Play pool!"

Even a princess has to brush her teeth (new heels courtesy of Nana and Papa)
Both worn out after 6 hrs. of nonstop play

This kid's hair cannot be tamed
A few hours after my parents departed, Cole's brother Ryan and his girlfriend Lauren, arrived from Houston to party with us on the 4th!  In true American style, we celebrated at our favorite Mexican restaurant, Rosario's, and then caught some fireworks at Woodlawn Park.  I really really love our family and am so grateful they took the time to come out and visit us!  Please come back soon!

Petland may be our new favorite place to visit

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


One of the things I looked forward to most when I was pregnant was the idea that Lily would have an instant friend in her new baby brother.  I loved imagining them growing up together, playing, protecting one another, telling each other stories and secrets.  I couldn't really imagine then just how much Lily would love Nolan.  And even though sometimes when Lily gets too close or too loud, Nolan screws up his face, sticks out his lip and cries, I'm pretty sure he loves her too.

Just the other day, Nolan was crying and I was rushing to get ready.  I told Lily to go talk to him and I heard from the other room, "Is okay. Mommy comin'."  My heart pretty much melted on the floor.  L's new favorite movie is "Popopontis" (Pocahontas) and she insists on holding Nolan's hand through the "Steady as a Beating Drum" song and swaying back and forth.  She also likes to share her toys with him, squish his cheeks, give him kisses, make him look at things she's holding by (gently) moving his head, wake him up, push him in the swing, and cover him with blankets, pillows, etc.  Nolan likes to watch her every move and smile at her.  I have a feeling it won't be too long before these two are partners in crime, with Lily leading the way :)

Friday, April 26, 2013

mother of two.

Dear Lily,
     It's been a rough week.  Probably the hardest one yet in my short, Mommy-of-two experience.  It's been hard for me to realize that despite the fact that you're so smart, and strong(-willed), and growing so big, you are still just a little girl.  My little girl.  I think I've been trying to make you grow up too fast, and expecting too much of you.  I probably focus on the negatives--the messes, the no-nos-- a little too much.  But I want you to know how much I love you right now.  I love how you put your hands on my cheeks, press your forehead against mine, and look into my eyes when you really want me to pay attention to you.  I love that you love music.  You request songs, and know the motions to them, and sing the words that you know reeallly loud.  You also sing a song of your own invention that goes, "Happy! Two. Three. Four. Mama! Dada! Wolen! Meee! Happy Twooo!"  I love what a sweet big sister you are.  You say "Hiii Wolen. Hi Wolen..." over and over in a sweet, high-pitched voice.  You push him in his swing, run and tell me when he's crying, and offer me suggestions of what might be wrong ("Wolen. Kyy. He saa (sad). Poopy. Change. Kungry. Eat").  I love that you ask for a "Tis" (kiss) and command us to give you a hug at bedtime (your baby doll has to get a kiss and hug too).  I love that you want to watch Cinderella, and wear your "Pincess jammies."  I love that you say "Sorry" when you bump into me.  Baby girl, you are sweet, sometimes intense, "silly" (probably your favorite word), demanding, caring, beautiful, and I love you.  All of you.  Even on weeks like this.

Dear Nolan,
      I cannot get enough of your smiles, and luckily you don't hesitate to share them.  They're frequent and genuine and like a balm when I'm feeling stressed or frustrated.  You are just so happy and relaxed.  I love your cheeks and your swoopy hair, and that you look like your Daddy.  I love that you sleep for long stretches, sometimes 6 or 7 hours.  You have been a blessing from the beginning, and I kind of think you're perfect.  I love that you follow us around with your eyes, and "talk" so much.  You've started to rollover, and it's hard to believe how fast you're growing.  I've felt guilty because I haven't been able to savor every little moment with you like I've wanted to, but rest assured you've got your Mommy wrapped around your little finger.  I love you, my sweet little chunk.


Saturday, March 9, 2013

nolan's birth story.

We landed in San Antonio from Utah on New Year's Eve at around 2 p.m.  We never could've dreamed that 24 hours later we would be adding another member to our family.  Here's how it all went down.

After we got home, Cole insisted that we unpack completely.  Looking back, this was a very good thing since that made one less to-do once we got home from the hospital.  Anyway, we unpacked and later that night went to the Wilsons to celebrate the New Year.  We joked afterwards that it must've been a wild party because it put me into labor.  We left around 1 a.m., went to bed around 2 a.m., and I woke up in the middle of the night sometime because the bed was soaked underneath me.  I was so out of it, so I thought I had either wet the bed or my water had broke.  I was feeling no contractions so I laid a towel down and went right back to sleep.

Taken around midnight NYE  

I woke up with Lily the next morning, fed her breakfast, did the dishes, and all the while I was leaking water.  I finally decided at about 9:30 to call my doctor.  There was another doctor on call, and when I told her what was happening, she asked if I had a previous c-section.  When I said yes, she said, "Of course you did."  Apparently it's pretty common for pre C-sections to break their water.  She said to come in and get checked.

At this point, I woke Cole up and told him what was going on.  We were both trying to be level-headed about it, and didn't want to tell anyone, just in case it was a false alarm.  We didn't even pack a bag because I thought it seemed too dramatic.  We both got ready.  I was determined to shower and put on make-up just in case it was the real deal though.  Priorities, right?  We didn't have a babysitter, but I was photo-ready haha.  I remember thinking the whole time: This can't be happening today.  Nothing is ready.  There's so much to do.  I was in disbelief, and yet I put my make-up and other toiletries to the side of the sink where Cole could find them easily if he had to come back for a bag.

We went in around noon with Lily in tow.  I went back for testing, Cole and Lily went to the food court.  Within about 30 minutes, the nurse broke the news that my water had indeed broken and that we'd be having a baby that day.  I asked if we'd have time to get a sitter and get a bag packed.  They said we had an hour basically to get ready.  I called Cole, he brought Lily back into triage for a few minutes while we called around to find a babysitter.  I'll never forget how kind our friends were.  I called the Rupps and Rodgers and left voicemails.  They quickly called us back, but not before the Jubers answered.  Before I could even tell Valorie I was in the hospital, she said "I'll be over to your place in 10 minutes!"  I was so grateful for her quick willingness to help.  She came to the hospital and picked up Lily.  It was emotional for me to say goodbye to Lily knowing that things were going to change for her and our little family.  We called around to our family to break the good news.  I tried to wrap my head around the idea that Nolan would be coming so early.  We had nothing prepared at home and had barely made it back from Utah.  It was and is still crazy to think about sometimes.  I think Cole and I were a little giddy though.  He was a New Years baby and 3.5 weeks early.  Talk about a dramatic entrance!

By 1:42 p.m. I was getting an epidural and had felt no contractions at all.  It was amazing and so different from my first birth experience.  I was alert the whole time.  The only discomfort I felt was some shortness of breath, like someone was sitting on my chest.  I told the anesthesiologist; they shot me with something, and the heaviness went away.  I felt a lot of pressure and pushing, but no pain.  Cole held my hand the whole time and kept asking if I was feeling okay.  Soon the doctor said to me "We're almost to your baby, Skinny."  Then after a lot of yanking and pushing, I heard his little cry and Cole and I cried too.  At 2:20 p.m. Nolan was born a healthy 7 lbs. 1 oz and 19.5 inches long.  They brought him around all gooey, and I felt so much love for him instantly.  I laid there patiently as they stitched me up.  I was able to hold him on the way back to my room.  They put him under a heat lamp because he was cold, and Cole and I just looked at him.  I think we still couldn't believe we had a baby.  The room was quiet, just us three.  It was really special.

Cole went and got Lily that night from the Jubers and brought her to meet Nolan for the first time.  She seemed pretty happy about him.  She'd smile, point and say, "Baby!"  She was so sweet with him from the beginning.  That night, Lily stayed with the Rodgers.  Cole's mom flew in the next day.  It was hard on Lily because of all the moving from person to person and how suddenly her little world was turned upside down, but she's always been sweet with Nolan and hasn't really shown any jealousy towards him.

Except some nausea, the recovery process was so much better than the first time.  I was able to get up and move around the next day, and they had me doing 3 laps 3x a day.  I showered and did my makeup everyday I was in the hospital, which felt great.  I remember with Lily, my emotions were all over the place.  This time, I felt so positive and alert.  Nolan was a sweetheart from the beginning.  One night I heard a baby screaming coming down the hall.  I thought for sure my good luck had ended and that was Nolan, but the nurse was wheeling two babies down the hall and the screaming baby belonged to my neighbor.  Whew!  We finally named him on the very last day we were at the hospital.  We picked his name out of an unused vomit bag (we didn't have a hat handy).  Fate decided between Nolan and Parker, and Nolan won.  It was a crazy turn of events, but I'm so glad he came early.  My due date came and went, and I just feel so grateful for all the extra time we've gotten to spend with him.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

2 months + some catching up

Since I blogged last, three groups of visitors have come and gone, we celebrated my 26th birthday, our fourth anniversary, Valentine's day, and Nolan's blessing.  My baby boy is somehow two months already, and my baby girl is literally days away from turning two!  Life, please slow down!

Here's my sad attempt at catch up:

Nolan is 2 months.  He rarely cries except when he's hungry, but most of the time he's a happy little guy.  He's such a good eater and has the chunk to prove it.  He's started to "talk," and sounds like a sweet little owl with his "hoos" and "ows."  He smiles so much.  Full-on tongue-out, eyes squinted, chins doubled, big cheesy grins.  I love them so much.  He sleeps so well.  I've really been spoiled and attribute the relatively easy transition to him and how well he sleeps.  He falls asleep on his own pretty well, and at night, I'll bring him into bed with me to eat and we both fall asleep until about 6 a.m.

Yesterday was Nolan's blessing day.  Cole gave such a beautiful blessing and just like Lily's blessing day, it was one of the happiest of my life.  It's days like that that make me reflect on the blessings of the gospel and fill me with so much gratitude for a loving Heavenly Father, for family, and for motherhood.

Cole's mom, dad, and brother, Blake, all came for the blessing.  We spent the weekend eating good food, watching movies, and letting Blake take care of our children (thanks Uncle Blake!)

It was hard to say goodbye to our family, and we can't wait til we can see them again.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

new year. new baby.

 We rang in the New Year by welcoming our baby boy, Nolan Cole, to the world three and a half weeks before his due date.  We're busy figuring out how to get life back to "normal," but it's pretty clear it will never be the same again, and that's not a bad thing.  Surprisingly, the transition to two hasn't been as scary as anticipated.  I give all credit to Nolan who sleeps 22 hours a day and is pretty content for the remaining 2 hours.  No birth story yet because I'm just too tired right now to type it all out.  Hopefully these pictures will suffice for now.  We're all in love over here, Lily included.