Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Our flower is growing..

4 months?! 
"Time flies when you're having fun!"
And we are just a barrel of monkies over here!
We have fashion shoots like this:

We play, we nap, we visit with friends.
To say the least, it's good to be Dahlia Jane!

In her 4th month not only has she done a ton of new stuff, she's also been quite the traveler.
Adding up to a little over 26 hours in the car and 1240 miles traveled, she has officially earned her title of "Best Baby Ever".  With only a couple of crying fits (John and I had  4 or 5 I think), she took some of her best naps on these road trips.  Although she is pretty good at traveling, we are ready to stay put and rest!
Enough packing of baby stuff!! Are you kidding?!  Even for this minimalist packer, our luggage count went up exponentially since having a baby. Not to mention, if we need the swing, the playmat, the boppy...yikes.
But John, being the "Best Car Packer Ever",  always leaves me shocked at how much we can actually pack into our vehicle!

Anywho...this post is not about road trips it's about our baby.
She's 4 months old.

She's grown physically -everyone tells me how BIG she is. Finally, I asked someone this weekend after she acted like I was putting Steroids in my breastmilk, if her being "big" was all that bad.  She replied with, "she's still cute for a big baby".. Aye, aye, aye. The things people say when you are pregnant and have children. Although, for a brassy Northerner, that reply was better than I expected.  So yeah, I guess I produce 12% milk or something. I'm not worried.
I was praying for a healthy baby and that's what I got! Exceedingly and abundantly above, right??
It's funny how women compare babies like they compare themselves.
By funny I mean, not cool.
Whoa. Ok , she's biggER than she was. Point made. 
But her personality is what has really developed this month, I think.
She's funny!
A smiley, happy girl who grunts when she wants your attention, lets you know by hollering when the mobile stops turning,  gets frustrated when you take her chewing rings away...

 In short, she's a doll!

Dahlia Likes:
*gagging herself with those ring link thingies 
*grunting and talking (lottts of talking!)
*Leg warmers and boots (she has 7 pairs of boots, all gifts, of course!)
*kicking (high-yah!)
*sucking on her fingers mostly her thumb (and she's left-side dominant like her dad. Maybe we will have a artsy fartsy on our hands?? I hope so!)
*napping regularly and sleeping through the night. YES, SLEEPING THROUGH THE NIGHT. Praise be! (I was fully expecting this not to happen for a while and was fine with it. But I must say, sleeping for more than 4 hours at a time is a blessing!)
*  to take little breaks during nursing to lay back and look me in the eye and talk A LOT. She likes a good conversation over a meal, it seems.

Dahlia Dislikes:
*being over-tired
*the bottle (still...)
*having ring links taken away
*loud overwhelming noises/ people  in her face. She's her mother's child on this one.

She likes to smile a lot. Although when I get the camera out, she stares at it like it's a shifty person that she has to keep an eye on.. she's playing it cool, I suppose.

this face is what I get for trying to take these when she was on the verge of sleep.

Again, shifty starer at the camera

She got this Jumperoo for Christmas. Note the pillow under her sweet little feet. 

I wish this was in focus! We were cracking up at Daddy :)

My mom has this high chair and DJC loved it! She loved sitting up!

She experienced a bath by the fire at Nana's house. Cozy!

I think this one is funny. This is how I spent most of Thanksgiving weekend. Nursing my baby with two dogs wanting to be near her at all times.

Sleeping in the car. I feel like she slept here more than anywhere this past month!

She's still in love with the bath and her daddy (that's who she's gazing so lovingly at!)

What a lovely girl she is.

I'm cherishing these baby moments.
The rocking her to sleep (which her need for is decreasing already :(  )
The coo's.
The diapers (it's hard not to love cloth diapers)
The rolls she is getting. Love that pudge! 
Her need for mommy. That's me!
The way she loves to snuggle when she's tired. 

A year ago at this time I had no idea that the little miracle I was carrying was going to be so beautiful, happy and sweet.

Two years in a row, best Christmas present ever.  

Monday, December 19, 2011

Guess who's inconsistent? and other random thoughts

Me, that's who.

I would venture to say, it's completely justified too, this inconsistency in blogging but I'm not one for excuses.

Instead of a play by play of our rather tumultuous past months, I will do a rapid fire of random thoughts.The thoughts will serve no real reason except to get them out of my head and to fulfill a blog post.

Here we go:
Babies grow exceedingly fast. I now fully understand this principle.

2011 was fair with an awesome event or two. 2012 will be better

I  didn't do a Christmas card this year.

I've cried more these past 4 months than I have in the past 4 years combined.

 Dahlia is one of the sweetest, most cuddly babies ever.

I didn't care about decorating my Christmas tree this year. In fact, it looks a bit forlorn and weird.

On death and dying:
Things you shouldn't say to someone who has lost a loved one:
anything that starts with "well, atleast..."

Being present, available, and a question-asker goes a long way with someone who is grieving. It makes know they are not alone in their sadness and grief. 

Grieving last more than the visitation and burial process. Normal is not just around the corner.

Christmas is a difficult time of year. I don't know why since it is the time to celebrate Jesus being born and all. I suppose it's priorities and focus.

Watching your child get gifts is way more fun than getting gifts yourself.

I don't see my family near as much as I should...I do most of the traveling usually and with an infant, it's not that easy.  

Consistency is usually one of my strong suits. Not lately.

Encouraging is usually one of my strong suits. Not lately

Being a mom is my strong suit lately.

Eating is a strong suit.

My husbnad looked strong in his suit this weekend.

Time is a precious comodity.
I wish I had more of it.

I want to learn how to make artisan breads this year.

I think of going back to school at least once a week.  That's where it begins and ends.

I miss being pregnant.

I miss the summer.

Dahia's laugh is hilarious.

I'm making chicken and dumplings for dinner.

It think I'm becoming a hugger.

I'm all out of thoughts for now.
But as you can see, my brain is a  confused melange of thoughts.
Inconsistent, yes. Is that a bad thing?  Not really. Atleast that's what I keep telling myself.

I need to go hang diapers up to dry and feed a tired baby...
..and obviously think of a funner blog post for next time.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Pinterest, my brain and my craft stash

This year's Christmas decorating has taken me longer than usual. My little Elf, while she is cute to look at, isn't much help this year. I suppose next year she will be trying to "help" but will be tearing everything down that I attempt to put up. Christmas decorating has forever changed, indeed because of the baby. No biggie! Adapt and overcome, yes? We have just turned our once 3 hour decor event into a festive 3 day marathon. And please hold, she is crying..
Ok I am back.
 I always have these awesome decor themes in my head for Christmas but when the time comes, I am hit with the reality that I am not a millionaire thousandaire  hundredaire. So, with the help of Pinterest, my brain and my craft stash, I've come up with other ideas that are more practical.  Maybe they aren't super trendy but if I like it, I do it. Simple, shmimple.

I had ribbon, clothespins, buttons and some old ornaments.
The only things I could come up with were these:

A ribbon wreath.
It has all of the colors of my living room in it so that's handy.
And someone gave me this little sign a while back that I never know what to do with. It seemed that it needed to be in the wreath.
It took me 3 hours. Not because it's a 3 hour project but
 because it was a bad nap day for Dahlia :)

Thennnnn, per Pinterest, I found this cute use for my buttons and clothespins. The idea I found had scrapbook or wrapping paper decoupaged onto the pins. No mother of a 3 month old has time for that. But I did have time to mass paint them with my acrylics and hot-glue buttons onto them. It took a total of 15 minutes, I think.Again, bad nap day = not so great memory for mom.

Handy, eh?

And here are the awkwardly hung balls,er, ornaments ;)
I saw the idea on a commercial and of course, commercial lady's turned out a bit more luxurious.
But, as is the theme of this year, it's hodge-podge and works for our house. Dahlia rather likes it. I put her in her bouncer and place her on the table and voila!  a Christmas mobile that mesmerizes. Bonus: glitter from the ornaments makes her extra sparkley.
 And there is ribbon placed everywhere on the light too. I just really like ribbon this year!

Our Christmas tree (glowing in the right-hand corner) is decorated with the fancy ornaments John's mom made over 30 years ago. I've not come up with a topper yet so it's kinda naked up top.

I like that when I walk in to my house, it's lit up with Christmas lights everywhere and is a cozy this 'n that combination of randomness,  very us.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

3 Whole Months of Dahlia Jane!

3 months ago, she was so tiny, so sweet, so JOHN-like. 
I think she looks like his mini-twin here!

Today she is an even sweeter babbling brook of happy, chunky baby!!

New this month:
Talking to her stuffed animals
Sitting in the Bumbo
Eating her hands ferociously
Loving to snuggle with a blankie but mostly mommy still :)
Getting scared :(
Lots more jabbering!
Trying to lift her back off of things
Coughing to get attention :)
Sleeping through the night every so often

Such a big girl with her house slippers on!

Stunning little eyeballs!
.and she still loves the bath. 

 she's looking more like me in my humble yet accurate opinion

me,  in a lovely spring bonnet @ 6 months

John, in a girl outfit @ 3 months

What do you think?
She is a good mix..

Either way: she's so pretty.
And she's a joyful little thing too.

So thankful for her!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Crafty and free is the way to be

Buying accessories for my baby is a bit pricey and overrated. (and can be a total obsession for me!) For something she will wear once or twice, anything that is over the price of $free is pushing it. (and it draws me into that obsessive space that can suck me in like a black hole [*go space!])
I digress.
 For Halloween I made her a fun "Dahliaesque" headband with materials I had in my craft stash.
Professional looking, it's not.
Easy and cute, it was.
It takes about 15 minutes if you do it one sitting. I did it over the course of 3 days. 

Here is what I did:

I cut random shapes out of Halloween colored felt and layered them..

 ..sewed a simple x stitch through the center with embroidery floss..

arranged them uh-like uh-so (say it like an Italian)..

 ..cut notches in them to give them some flare..

..hot glued them onto a nylon headband and voila..
 cute baby headband that cost me $0.00 since I already had everything

"I like it thiiiiis much", she says

soakin' up some rays, sportin' the headband.

Easy peasy punkin' squeazy!

It would be adorable with buttons or other fun embelishments in the midst, with lace in between the layers, fabric or any other fun variation. I might even make myself an adult-sized version in more neutral colors!

Bada Bing!

Friday, October 28, 2011

It's been a long time..

I haven't done fill in the blank Friday since before the baby was born. It's been a while! So as I sit here with a baby sleeping on me (she doesn't want to be put down today) this seemed like an easy  blog to post to do :)

1.   When I was a kid I wanted to be      a nurse    when I grew up.

2.   As an adult, my dream job would be  a stay at home mommy and a professional shopper and decorator      .

3.  W hen I was younger I wanted to be just like  my mom   .

4. The childhood Halloween costume that I remember most was when I was   a homemade bunny suit my aunt made me   .

5.  My favorite childhood toy was   my babies.

6.  The time I got into the biggest amount of trouble when I was a kid was when I     smarted off to my piano teacher during  a lesson and my mom said, "wait until your dad gets home.." the wait was terrible and I. got. it. good.  .

7.  I get daily inspiration from   the Bible, friends, nature and Pinterest  .

Happy Halloween weekend! Our lil' punkie will not be dressing up in costume but will be dressing up extra cute. In fact, that's what we will call her costume, "Cute".
Pictures to come!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Another month, another chin

So we are apparently good at helping our baby stay alive. We made it another month!
She's 2 months old!

And wow, how quickly it's gone too!

Dahlia's major accomplishments this month include:

finding her hands
smiling on purpose
making fun sounds on purpose 
gaining control of her neck and trying to lift her shoulders (0verachiever!)
sleeping more than 4 hours at one time
successfully "talk training" with her dad (he made this regimen up)
becoming a pro at breastfeeding
growing a buzz-cut (it deserves a separate post)

other highlights:
she met her grandpa Greg 

 she played with her sister

she started wearing 0-3 month clothes which has more fashionable options unlike newborn size

she went to  slept through the pumpkin patch for the first time

she went to slept through her first birthday party

she loves tummy time

she loves to play with her friends

 and last but certainly not least, she grew a sizable double chin. She's now working on a triple. One chin a month is what we're averaging so far

Today at the dr she weighed 12 pounds and 12 ounces and was 22.7     inches long.  She's a growing little bundle of sweet. AND he said she was looking "developmentally exceptional"  for a 2 month old. Uh huh. I knew it :)

Love. Her.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

You should make this

I made this for dinner because my Real Simple magazine told me to and I loved it!
Try it, it's so easy and surprisingly delish and filling.
It was a hit!

Chickpea-Spinach Curry With Cucumber-Yogurt Sauce

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, and ginger and cook, stirring often, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the curry powder and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
  2. Add the chickpeas, spinach, 2 cups water, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper to the saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is slightly thickened, 10 to 12 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir together the yogurt, cucumber, cilantro, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Serve the chickpea mixture with the yogurt sauce and naan.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Are you kidding me!?

I know my blog is all about my baby now but seriously, how could it not be!? She's really the only thing that captivates my attention these days..

Are you kidding me!?

Check her out..
her little legs...really!?!

belly!!! and rolls. love the rolls.

her eyes, her face. I can't handle the ammont of cuteness that those two things a lone contain. AHHHHHHH!

cheeks resting comfortably on her chest. Jowls. Let's just be honest and call them what they are, jowls.

adorable. let me break it down for you.: UH-DOR-UH-BUL!

practicing her "Blue Steel"