Tuesday, April 22, 2014

4 Months Old!

Little Lucy Meg Peg (incidentally, if I were to write a children's book about her, that would be the character's name!) is four months old today and full of spunk!

My big girl! 
She has discovered her toes and they are now her favorite toys!  She still loves her fingers, and the paci love affair continues.  She opens her mouth as wide as she can as soon as she sees her pacifier.  Just this morning she hit another milestone: she had her purple pacifier in her mouth with her giraffe wubanub on her tummy. I looked down and she'd swapped the two! She'd put her giraffe paci in her mouth all by herself!!  Folks, this is exciting!  This means she's one step closer to pacifying herself when she's upset -- particularly at nap and bedtime!

Lucy now reaches for toys, her fingers (or ours), and her toes (or ours).  Everything she grasps goes directly into her mouth to further explore.

Toes make her happy!

She is talking more and more and exploring lower tones and longer strings of babbling.  She blows raspberries constantly and loves to mimic whatever you do with your tongue.  The other day she started clucking her tongue in response to daddy clicking his -- pretty cute!

Lucy is getting more and more independent.  At night when it's time for bed, I feed her, change her, and swaddle her, then kiss her goodnight and put her in her crib with her paci.  She actually gets mad now if I try to rock her or sing to her.  It's rather bittersweet for this mama, but she goes to sleep so much more easily!  There are still nights that she cries herself to sleep, but they're complimented by nights she goes down without so much as a peep!!  She's also very snuggly when she wakes up now!

In her Easter finery
She has settled into a daytime routine of wake for 90 minutes, eat, sleep, repeat.  It's wonderful to have some predictability to her schedule and to have her napping so much more successfully.  Most of her naps still only last 45 minutes, but I'll take that over not napping any day!!  At night she's gone from sleeping 8-3:30, then up again at 7 or 7:30 to sleeping 7:15-11, then up at 1am, 4am, and 6:30 for the day.  That's a bummer and yielding some tired parents.  We're hoping this is a phase and she'll soon be back to her sleeping through the night ways!

Lastly, this month she's started holding her head up well enough to sit in the bumbo.  She's still not too sure she likes it and I suspect it's because it's a lot of work for her...but she's getting there and sitting up like a champ!

This is a trying age for me.  Lucy isn't mobile yet (she still hasn't mastered rolling from back to tummy) and she's more alert and aware of her surroundings than ever.  This means she loves stimulation, which translates to face time with mommy whenever she's awake.  She's not content to watch me from afar, she wants to be in on the action or else engaging me directly.

She's not snuggly except for a few minutes when she wakes up or after she nurses.  I'm learning to cherish these times when she wants to be held and just stop and snuggle her.  Other times if she wants to be held, she wants to be doing at the same time.  She's easily bored with her toys... It makes for long days when she doesn't nap.

Her cousins have been a huge blessing in providing entertainment for her.  Ava, especially, has a knack for reading to Lucy and keeping her engaged!  Sarah has been a sounding board for me and a welcome baby-holder when I'm exhausted. I'm so thankful they live close by!

Isaac takes over when he gets home, but he's tired too (my hard working man!) and we're thankful for the loving arms of our MC (Bible study community group) to give us a break on Wednesdays by loving our Lucy so we can eat and have some adult conversation!

This is not to say I don't love her, but it is the hardest month we've had yet, and it's also the most rewarding as she now recognizes us and lights up when we come into the room.  She loves to eat (my porky pig!) and she gets excited when she knows she's going to nurse, and often stops to smile up at me as if to say "thanks for the good milk, ma!" She's reaching for toys and exploring her world and mimicking and stealing our hearts more each day!  I just want to remember the good and the challenges for next time around and to encourage other mothers who read this that it IS tough, but GOOD, so good!

And now for some gratuitous photos because my baby is the cutest ever:

Thanks for the sunglasses, Nana! 

This is her sunglasses face. I kid you not! 

Visiting with (great, great) cousin Carole and (great, great) Auntie Bea! 

Bragging on my man

Isaac Michael McPhee.

What can I say?  He is the best husband a gal could ever imagine.  Sometimes I just need to brag on him, he's just so good to me.  I want to remember the little things he does to serve me.

This weekend he got up in the morning and made me coffee and brought it to me in bed, he then made me breakfast and watched Lucy so I could go to workout class (which is also a great fellowship opportunity with likeminded moms) and not be distracted.  I came home and he treated me to a nap, and an amazing dinner we've dubbed "Chicken McPheelington."

Then that night he got up with the baby every time she cried.  He tried to feed her a bottle so I could sleep, but alas, she wasn't having it.  His solution was to get up with her, bring her to nurse in bed, pick her back up when she was done, change her, swaddle her, soothe her back to sleep, and repeat (like a lot! She was up on the hour at some points).  He never complained, and I got a ton more sleep than usual!

 This was all in just one day.

He loves our daughter and has captivated her little heart already, which melts my heart that much more! And he's an amazing uncle to two little kiddos who think he's just the greatest, and as a result climb all over him!

I love him!

Bonus: he's a total stud! He walked out in this today...how could I not snap a picture (or two)


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Birthday, Gwenna and Caleb!

In the afternoon on Easter we transitioned to celebrate two up and coming three year olds, Gwenna (April 25) and Caleb (May 8).  

Gwenna's birthday request was to do the "Hokey Pokey" with the family! 

Caleb finally joined in at the end! 

This guy was excited to pass on one of his favorite swords to his little cousin! 

"Caleb, may I present this sword to you!" 

"Hey Caleb, what book is that?"

"Buzz Lightyear -- to infinity and beeeeyond!" 

Serious men do not require words to understand one another!

Maid Marian

Amelia loves her Uncle J!

I tried to convince Sarah that a third baby would look good on her... it was a no-go. 

Auntie Love! 

Seriously -- these two!! 

Love this little family! Gideon was sleeping, I think. 

I just love her! 

Jelly Bean Soup! -- Nice one, Sarah! 

Grandfather facetiming my folks -- I wish I'd captured his reaction when he saw their faces appear!! It was priceless!

Happy Easter!

But He was pierce for our transgressions; He was crushed for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with His wounds we are healed.  - Isaiah 53:5

And he said to them, "Do not be alarmed.  You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified.  He has risen; He is not here..."  Mark 16:6a

This post will primarily be pictures, just the way my family prefers, I'm sure! ;)

Baby girl in her Easter best: Cousin Ava's Christmas dress, a thrifted sweater and boots, and gifted tights! 

Miss Amelia
 Uncle Lonnie: "Hi Katie! Is she awake?"
Me: "Yep, just waking up"
Uncle Lonnie: "Thank you!" as he scoops her away for a chat!  LOVE my family!
THIS GUY just landed a job at Fircrest!!! 

Amelia wasn't terribly thrilled to share Granddad! 

We held our traditional (mini) Seder with all the "Arnolds" (except Rosie/Blair), the Stewarts, the Courys, Grandfather, and us! :

Reading the first question! 

Cousin adoration happening here! 

Amelia (8 mo), London (almost 3 mo), Lucy (almost 4 mo)

Poor mellow London got "loved" a bit much by his busy girl cousins! 
Searching for the Afikomen: 

Searching is always better with a best friend! 

Let's pause for a moment to enjoy some needed auntie snuggles! 

Sarah holds a very special place in Gwenna's heart! 

Amaris: always a baby on her hip or in her arms!