Friday, January 29, 2010

Laughing II

I love Reese's beautiful little laugh so much I recorded it. I am hoping to record a bunch of little things so I don't forget her fun baby moments. Anyway, ENJOY!!!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Oh this hair...

Dustin is totally into my hair. I'm not sure why but he has some strong opinion about what I should try or not try. When it was long he was worried when I cut it. When I was blonde he thought I should try dark. So, I grew my color out while I was pregnant and over break I dyed it dark. Why not, I thought to myself, it's my natural color anyway. Let's give it a shot and just see. If I hate it, there's always another bottle to cover it up. Well, let me tell you...I HATE it. It's horribly dark. Too dark and not flattering to my face. People who normally would tell me it looks good even if it doesn't look at me and turn away without a word. Yikes!

So, today, I tried again. Dustin's mom had a box of highlights so I thought I'd streak it up a little. I followed the directions and wouldn't you know it turned red and it's probably even more hideous than it was before. UGH! Hair! Why am I so vain? Now I am forced to go to the salon and dole out money that I'd rather spend on Reese to fix this horrible mistake. Lesson learned, this time, blondes really do have more fun (or at least feel better about themselves).

Friday, January 22, 2010


Yesterday was the first time Reese laughed. It was the sweetest sound I've ever heard! It wasn't any huge ha ha ha or anything, but it was a tiny little breathy sound that made my day. I ran my finger over her lips to make them do the motor boat sound and she loved it! Before I knew it, she had a full-on smile that turned to a breathy little laugh. I could've sat there all day and played that game. She must've been able to also because once she finally quit, I walked away to finish packing up and I heard her scream. I know that scream meant, "Hey! I wasn't done playing yet!" There are so many things that will be her firsts, some I'll be there for, some I won't. But I will always remember how great it felt to make her so happy that she laughed for the first time. My cup runneth over....

Thursday, January 21, 2010

And Baby Makes....

Five, because apparently dogs count in this too if you ask my husband. He thinks we don't have to count Natty but he does live in the house too so he gets counted.

Those poor dogs, I never thought they would drive me to pet adoption but they are getting close. As soon as I put Reese down they run into the room, shake out their ears and wake her up. If I'm up, they're up and under my feet. They invade my space and drive me crazy. Yet, I still love them.

I can't wait until they come to love Reese as much as we do. I can't wait until Reese gets big enough to ride Miller. The day will come when they are the best of friends. Right now they just need to live through the wrath of a sleep-deprived mom.

Saturday, January 16, 2010


Reese has really started smiling lately. She doesn't quite do it on command but she is definitely a smiling fool! She is still up a lot during the night, and last night we switched her to her crib from the bassinet so it was an even longer night. Last night I got up to rock her to sleep a couple of times and she would just doze off only to wake up smiling. It was so dang cute I couldn't hardly stand it. She was just so happy to be hanging out with Mom that she couldn't even sleep. It really is wonderful to watch her finally hit her milestones. And before we know it, she'll be holding her head up too!!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Cry it out

Yesterday, we took Reese for her 2 month check up. She hasn't been sleeping well at all and we were ready to discuss this with her doctor. We do a fabulous bedtime routine but we still have her in our room at the foot of our bed. We slept down there too so that it would be easier to comfort her without having to get up each time she cried. Which lately has been about every 2 hours or so.

Anyway, we told our doctor that our 2 month old daughter (3 weeks adjusted age with her preemie status) was up every couple hours and we didn't know what to do. She sat there and "ummmmed and hmmmmed." Finally giving us the diagnosis of, "well maybe it's time to do some tough love and let her cry it out." She was a resident so I was waiting for our regular doctor to come in and say that was ridiculous but he didn't. He said the same! I was not just mad, I was seriously offended.

Needless to say, I wasn't about to try this method. I did agree that maybe she needed to get out of our room though. So, like I do, I came up with a plan. Last night I bumped her bedtime back to 9:00, Dustin learned the swaddle out of The Happiest Baby on the Block, so we tried a slightly different method to that, and we slept at the normal end of the bed. (We need to warm her room up a little before she sleeps there full time.)

And guess what? That little stinker slept and slept and slept last night! She slept from 9:30 until 1:30. I got up and fed her and she was back in her bed by 2 where she proceeded to sleep until 5:30. WOW!!!! I am thrilled! So here it is, 6:30 in the morning and I'm feeling bright-eyed and bushy tailed. Dustin and I are almost giddy.

So, Doctors without Kids, you can take your Cry it Out Method and use it when your tiny baby is laying in bed needing their Mama because my baby sleeps just fine on her own!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Happy Birthday, Dusty

January 6, 1983 was the birth of my hubby. And as he will tell you, he will never be as old as me. He even calls me old girl sometimes but that's because he's hung up on age, I on the other hand, am not.

Dustin is the best friend I've ever had. He is also the male version of me. He loves to drink Miller Lite, hang out with friends and cuddle his daughter. He loves old country music and back roading on the weekends. He has many passions; hunting, racing, drinking, and just about anything that involves competition. But he is more than just that. He is loving, thoughtful and empathetic. He probably would never admit to half of that but it's true.

Dustin is a great father, he gets up even when he has to work. He washes bottles and does dishes and changes dirty diapers. He can't wait to see her when he gets home and loves to text pictures of her to his friends. He is a great friend to me too. He was right beside me cheering me on when I gave birth. He stands up for me when I don't like something that happens. And he makes a choice to love us each day.

So tomorrow, Dustin, I hope you have a great day. I hope you get every wish your heart desires. And I hope that we will be able to spend 60 more birthdays together!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

I get by with a little help from my friends.

John Lennon's lyrics have always inspired something in me. Even when I was in high school this quote always seemed to just sum it up. I couldn't get by without them. I've always been a people person, I thrive best when I am around people I love.

When I was in high school it was Jenny, Mary, and Amber. I loved going out with them. We drank more than any boy, we painted banners and hung them on the underpass for each other's birthdays. We dragged Main until we got dizzy. We sang this horribly dirty song that causes me to blush now (OMG if Reese ever sings that I will kill her!). And when I needed something they were there. I look back at high school with such fondness because of those friends.

In college, I made tons of new friends. Including my best friend, Marsha, who introduced me to my now best friend, Dustin. I made work friends at the church day care who really helped me along my moral journey. I made school friends who I griped about classes and studied with. I made going out friends who I partied with (a lot). As I went through my journey, I never really lost anyone, I just picked some up as I went. But without them I don't know where I'd be.

Now that I am an adult, I have a new version of what friendship should be. Now I have made some friends who help me in ways that I didn't know I'd ever need. These are friends who listen without judgment (or with judgement when needed), they are the ones you call with questions about diaper rash, or the ones who send you a beautiful Christmas ornament with your new family's names on it. They are the friends who comment on your 5,000 facebook pictures. But most of all, when you are getting ready to face a tough day they are the ones with quotes, words of wisdom, and words of love ready to cheer you on.

I am proud to say that my next generation of friends still has all the important ones there but has also added a few great ones. And I am just as proud to know that new or old, I have the best friends a person could ask for. And tomorrow, when I face a difficult day, I will know that, I get by with a little help from my friends.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Preemie Parents

I recently joined a forum for Moms of preemies. Here you can ask other Moms questions and get really quick answers. The other day someone posted this little story. I've read it a billion times and I cry each time. I just think it's lovely (maybe a little cheesey but it's me, right?).

Did you ever wonder how the mothers of premature babies are chosen? Somehow, I visualize God hovering over Earth, selecting his instruments for propagation with great care and deliberation. As he observes, he instructs his angels to take notes in a giant ledger.
"Armstrong, Beth, son. Patron Saint, Matthew.
Forrest, Marjorie, daughter. Patron Saint, Celia.
Rutledge, Carrie, twins. Patron Saint...give her Gerard. He's used to
Finally, he passes a name to an angel and smiles.
"Give her a preemie." The angel is curious. "Why this one, God? She's so happy."
"Exactly," smiles God. "Could I give a premature baby a mother who knows no laughter? That would be cruel."
"But does she have the patience?" asks the angel.
"I don't want her to have too much patience, or she'll drown in a sea
of self-pity and despair. Once the shock and resentment wear off, she'll handle it.
I watched her today. She has that sense of self and independence so rare and so necessary in a mother. You see, the child I'm going to give her has a world of its own. She has to make it live in her world, and that's not going to be easy."
"But Lord, I don't think she even believes in you."
God smiles. "No matter, I can fix that. This one is perfect She has just the right amount of selfishness."
The angel gasps, "Selfishness?! Is that a virtue?"
God nods. "If she can't separate herself from the child occasionally, she will never survive. Yes, here is a woman whom I will bless with a child less than perfect.
She doesn't know it yet, but she is to be envied. She will never take for granted a spoken word. She will never consider a step ordinary. When her child says momma for the first time, she will be witness to a miracle and know it. I will permit her to see clearly the things I see-- ignorance, cruelty, prejudice-- and allow her to rise above them. She will never be alone. I will be at her side every minute of every day of her life because she is doing my work as surely as she is here by my side."
"And what about her Patron Saint?" asks the angel, his pen poised in
the air.
God smiles. "A mirror will suffice."

The Little Cheerleader

When I was a kid my mom was every girly-girl's dream! We did cartwheels in the living room, we learned cheers (C'mon, you remember Who stole the Cookie from the Cookie Jar?), I can even remember doing cheers for the check out lady at Wal-Mart. *We must've been adorable for my mom to publicly humiliate us at Wal-Mart to do cheers! I loved being a cheerleader. I'm sure my mom dreamed about our lives and just knew her daughters were destined to shake it in a short skirt in front of dozens of cold football fans.

This brought me to realize, I wonder what Reese will do when she grows up. I am so excited about each teeny-tiny thing she does now that I never stop to think about the girl she will grow up to be. I think that's one of the fun parts of being a parent. Now, don't get me wrong, I would rather enjoy every minute of her life now than to spend my time dreaming of the girl she is to become, but still, I wonder...

Will she become the girly-girl cheerleader like me? Will she play basketball and (gasp) hate pink like the Neal's? What will she be when she grows up? What I have decided is that I have no expectations of a role I think she should fit into. I hope she has empathy, I hope she gives love, and I hope she will grow to be my best friend. Small expectations, right?

In the meantime, I will keep on enjoying this little creature in the here and now. Because life is a journey, and right now we're taking the scenic route.