Here are a few highlights from our first week home together. True it's taking some adjusting (I forget so many things about life with a newborn!) but everyone is doing so great and it feels good to have the whole family all here. Soaking it in and trying to savor it each day.
More love than my heart can hold.
She's so tiny in his arms.
This is what a happy Easter morning looks like in our house.
A boy in jammies with trains and eggs.
My favorite shot from the brief photo session I did with my kids.
Alice arrived on Monday! She is a tiny little peanut but she is healthy and absolutely perfect. She has a strong voice and thinks she already wants to hold her head up and look around. Her doctor calls her "small but mighty." Julian loves her so much. He wasn't quite sure about her when he first came to visit us in the hospital but I think he was more distracted by the hospital and commotion than anything. He's really happy to have her home with us now and wants to keep tabs on her wherever she goes. We are so totally in love with her and are really thankful to have her in our arms.
I've been working on a really fun project this year. I call it the 52 Week Project. The point of it is to consciously hop in a photo with my kid(s) each week - whether it's a candid or a posed photo - and at the end of the year, we will have an entire year of photos with me included in them. As the mama and a photographer, I am almost always the one behind the lens. In looking back over the first year or two with Julian, I don't have as many photos with him as I'd like. So I decided to make it a project. And I am so in love with what I'm seeing. They are truly becoming treasures and I can't wait to do a huge compilation print of them at the end. Memories that are true gems documenting a year when we go from 3 to 4.
I post one photo a week (so far usually on Fridays) on my personal Facebook page, as well as on Instagram. I am posting them once a month on my photography blog. (Click on "blog" on my photography blog to see all my posts including recent photo sessions I've done)
It's crazy to look back over the first three months of the year and see big changes already. For example, in the fourth week, Julian still had a pacifier. He's since given up his pacifier entirely and it feels like we've been done with it for so long. But then I look back and realize it was just a couple of months ago that we transitioned off a pacifier as well as into a big boy bed. Funny how it puts time into perspective. So much has already happened this year and I am thrilled that at the end of the year, we will have documented a very precious, special year together.
I'll be posting them monthly on my professional blog so be sure to bookmark that blog address to be able to follow along over the rest of the year (I'm not sure that I'll be doubling up and posting them here as well). The first photo from this fourth month is already my favorite and they just seem to keep getting better. We'll be adding a sweet, new face to them any day now.
I can't believe I haven't updated the blog since Christmas! The weeks are going by so quickly. We're getting closer and closer to meeting our newest little family member. Julian is keeping me on my toes which is both good and bad. We're feeling anxious to meet the baby and for the warmer weather we are hoping she will bring with her. Julian is on his second round of antibiotics for an ear infection that won't clear up. He's been sick for 5 straight weeks and they have been long ones without a lot of rest. I'm desperately trying to get him well before we bring home his sister. Dustin is still busy with work and extra projects he's working on. He's putting in a lot of hours but working on things he loves. I have one more professional photography session this weekend to complete before I go on a bit of maternity leave from working. I've been so busy with photo shoots which has been awesome. Business is good.
Snuggling with his daddy before bed.
This boy. He is my heart.
He LOVES his trains.
Read to me daddy! A little bedtime reading right after his bath.
My boy on Valentine's Day.
'I don't feel well, mommy' snuggles.
Almost time to meet this baby! I'm ready.
Very serious about his painting. He is like his mama, loves to paint!
Our baths look more like train and car washes, less like baths. They all get a good scrub!
At the zoo on Monday with his best friends. Their mamas are friends of mine since high school. It's pretty awesome to have known them since I was a teenager, and now have babies who are best friends. They are the sweetest together. <3
And the cookies are made. The gifts are wrapped and under the tree. The stockings are full and we're ready for all of it! Tonight we made cookies and frosted and decorated them. We will enjoy them this week (I also made Spritz cookies last week - a family tradition in my family) and Julian will set out a few tomorrow night for Santa. Tomorrow we will celebrate Christmas with my family and then on Christmas day we will be home just our own little family.
Dustin has worked 43 hours of the past 80 hours. To say it has been out of control busy for him at work is an understatement. He's home for the next couple of days and I couldn't be happier to finally have him at home. He's worked the weekends a lot lately while things at work have been hectic so we're ready to have some time together.
I took this picture last Monday. Tomorrow I will be 21 weeks pregnant so this photo was right at 20 weeks. I am carrying this baby girl much, much higher than I carried Julian. He was down so low and I already feel her up pretty high. With Julian I felt flutters in the beginning but with her, I felt kicks from the get go. She is a kicker! I'm just glad they don't hurt yet. She's most active around 10:30pm - a night owl like her mama. I'm feeling good and just staying busy with Julian. I'm enjoying my own little personal space heater lately with our frigid, below-zero temperatures. Too. Cold.
We got our tree and house decorated finally last night - the tree has been up for a week with just lights on it. Julian is having fun looking at the ornaments and playing with a bucket of jingle bells I gave him. We've been listening to Christmas music and dancing around the house all week. The snow and cold has made it finally feel like Christmas. We're excited, ready, and NEARLY done with our gift buying and making. He's going to be so much fun this year!
I really love 2 and a half. He's so much fun right now.
GIRL!!!! We are so excited to be adding a little girl to our family. We got to see her squirming and kicking today in an ultrasound. She had her hands up by her ears just like Julian did in his ultrasounds and after he was born. I think her profile looks a lot like his did in utero. Same nose. :) Everything looked absolutely perfect today. Her heart looked great, brain, palette, feet, everything. We took Julian with us to the ultrasound and while he's not overly into this whole baby thing, it was fun to all be there together today.
After careful consideration, I believe that we decided that this costume is supposed to be a sock monkey. We tossed around monkey, bear, and sock monkey for a while, but after taking Julian trick-or-treating (his first time!) and people kept saying, "what a cute sock monkey," we went with it. I am the sort that likes to make Halloween costumes by hand - when we were kids it was the craft and creativity of it that not only made it fun but meaningful as a costume. However, due to this year's lack of idea inspiration and my lack of energy (thank you, pregnancy!) we bought a $5 costume from Old Navy. And, well, whatever he was, he was a cute one! We had dinner with my parents and handed out candy at their house and after Julian watched a few kids do it, he was ready to try trick-or-treating. So my dad and I took him out while Dustin and my mom stayed home to hand out candy. Julian totally loved it! We went to all of 5 or 6 houses but watching him stand at those doors and say "trick or treat!" was about the cutest thing I've ever seen! Now we're ready to gear up for Thanksgiving and enjoy these last bits of fall before the snow sticks. Hope you had a fun Halloween. XO
Julian is going to be a big brother! We are so excited to add another little person to our family in April. The past 12 weeks have flown by. Now our evenings include talk of baby names and wonderings of who this bebe is and who it will look like. The anticipation of waiting to meet a family member is one of the coolest things ever!
Well, here's how our day went. We stumped a total of four doctors today with Julian's injury. Two pediatricians, two pediatric orthopedists, a second round of X-rays at Children's Hospital, and it turns out his sprained ankle from 3 weeks ago is actually a spiral fracture of his tibia. From the top of his bone all the way to the bottom of it. (CRAZY to see the x-ray!!) So now he's sporting a cool orange cast that goes half way up his thigh. I really love our pediatrician office who was kind enough to offer a second MD opinion on the spot. When both pediatricians found it odd that he wasn't healing better or showing more pain, they called over to Children's Hospital, scheduled us an appointment for 6 hours later to be seen with a specialist. They were really great and Julian never once fussed or got upset. Which was amazing considering how many hours we spent in doctors offices today. He only has to have the cast on for a week and they will cut it off next week. He can walk on it and was already up on it tonight. It's a little interesting changing a diaper, but otherwise he's been pretty great about it. Considering the fact that he hates socks and only has one pair of shoes (Crocs) that he will wear, I was shocked that he didn't put up more of a fight about the cast. No complaints at all from him. Such a champ.
It's been par for the course for the week. My uncle had a stroke on Sunday so my parents have been working on getting him settled and well this week before they go on vacation. And on top of it all, Dustin was run off the road last night by a really scary incident of road rage where another driver smashed the front end of his car and then took off in a hit and run. So he's been dealing with police reports and smashed car drama. He's physically ok which I am so thankful for. But it's been a big, heavy week. We are really, really ready for a weekend all together at home.
I've seen so many people online this week talking about heavy, sad, stressful things. It makes me want to walk around giving out hugs. I feel like everyone I know could use a hug this week. Make sure you give someone a really good hug this week. We could all use one. <3 Meg
We clearly have a long ways to go on this potty thing. :) We actually haven't started potty training, I just bought him two different kinds of seats this week. He's been exploring them and this adventure was along the lines of "look mama, hat?" We're in no hurry (i.e. he's not at all interested), just introducing the idea.
It's been really crazy around here the past few weeks. It's been nearly 3 weeks since Julian had to have xrays and I've been carrying him around. Yesterday we finally convinced him to put his foot flat on the floor. He stood on it for the first time. And today I was able to convince him to take a few steps at a time while holding onto my hands. I had no idea I would have to re-train my child to walk. It's been wild. We went to the zoo with friends on Thursday and his friend Allana was standing up and holding onto the fence in front of the bears. He wanted to join her, so I let him. He stood right up on his foot without even thinking about it. So I knew it was feeling well enough to balance on the ball of his foot. So we've been more intentional about having him try. He's very timid and it's almost like his muscles don't remember what to do and are stiff. I really thought he would bounce back better from this but I'm so thrilled to see him at least trying. Hoping we're on the path to recovery and back to his physical self.
Dustin has been working really long hours while he and a coworker try to make good progress on a program. It seems to be two steps forward, another back and so on. It's looking pretty intense for the next couple of months so we're just trying to rest and relax together when we can.
Life can be so busy. But I'm grateful to have each other and to see Julian beginning to bounce back to himself. September has really flown by.
Dustin pulled out his legos from when he was a child. Julian is asking "make a house, make a tunnel" every day. He likes to have a tunnel to drive his Lego train through. So he and his dad made a tunnel with Legos this morning.
We were at the mall and the boys had to stop in at the Lego store. Julian asked to get out of his stroller to see the Lego table which he promptly climbed up on, laid down, and started sifting through the Legos.
Julian is in to all things trains and blocks lately. He's watched a lot of Thomas and Friends since he hurt his ankle and so there is a lot of acting out train crashes while playing. I love to watch his little imagination at work these days. It seems to be constantly spinning.
Ankle Update: Julian seems to be doing a little better, he's not complaining of pain as much and has been able to take much less medicine than he did a week ago. He accidentally took a step on his leg a week ago while playing and he is clearly not healed. Since that day, he has been very cautious and willing to avoid it. He's crawling and scooting around the house just fine and bumping it doesn't seem to bother him - only putting his body weight on it. May make a follow-up phone call to the Dr who saw him this week and ask his opinion on how much longer to wait. It's possible they will want him back in for a second round of x-rays if they have any concern about hairline fractures. But in the mean time, there's a lot of slowing down and resting and carrying him around.
We've had an eventful week around here! Last week we all came down with a bad virus and have been under the weather. Then, on Monday night, Julian took a fall that landed us in Urgent Care. We were fairly sure he'd broken bones based on his reaction to the fall. However after a round of x-rays (he screamed bloody murder while Dustin held him down to be x-rayed), it shows that luckily, he's young enough that many of his bones are not yet developed and are still cartilage - likely saving him from broken bones. So we brought our injured boy home with a sprain. Which in a lot of ways we're grateful for no broken bones. But on the other hand, they cannot do anything for a sprain so we have a long road of healing ahead. It's so strange to see our active boy so still and immobile. He is unable to put any weight on it or stand. He can hardly crawl so he mostly just scoots around the floor and I lift him and carry him around.
After getting home from Urgent Care. The dr was amazing and I was shocked when Julian let him wrap his ankle. Pitiful and cute at the same time.
Lots of laying around the house the past two days. He keeps asking for Mythbusters and Thomas and Friends. We have a steady Netflix queue going on.
I hate all of this tv time but with all of the rain we've had, I haven't even been able to get him out for a walk in the stroller. So we're just taking it as a healing week and are reading, doing puzzles, and painting in between shows. Hoping he heals quickly. We haven't seen much improvement over the past 48hrs so hoping it's not too long before he can play again. We were warned it could be weeks...