Six Weeks of Adeline

/ /  When you don't remember life before  / /

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I'm fairly certain anyone who reads this blog is already well aware, but I figured it was only right to make it official here... so, friends, please meet Adeline!

Isn't she just the BEST?? I'm so in love it's pitiful, and thanks to my usual sappiness plus an extra dose of hormones, I find myself so overwhelmed with my feelings for her that I just don't know what to do with myself. Besides saying things like "just look at her" and "I just can't handle that little face!" out loud to no one in particular throughout the day (because it's usually just me and Adeline hanging out...) I've taken to scrolling through the hundreds of photos already saved on my phone almost every night in bed (when I should be sleeping) and tapping Dan every few minutes to point out how absolutely adorable she is in a photo that he's likely already seen a dozen times before. Thankfully, I married a very patient man and he's very good at just smiling and reminding me that he is also over the moon in love with her so he is already well aware of how cute she is. I know very well I'm probably already annoying people with my abundance of Facebook and Instagram photos of her... but I just can't help it! I'm in love I'm in love and I don't care who knows it.

Adeline decided that she wanted to join us a full month early, and arrived early in the morning on March 6th. I can't believe how much she has grown and changed in such a short time! Based on the above rambling about how awesome she is, I'm sure it's no surprise to anyone that I am loving every single second of being a mom. I like to think I've settled in to my new role nicely, but it's definitely not without some struggles. I think the biggest hurdle I'm dealing with is the lack of a schedule in my days, which has been a HUGE adjustment for me. I'm a creature of habit and thrive on structure, and while I knew having a newborn would pretty much be the exact opposite of routine, I was admittedly not prepared for it. I'm slowly learning to just go with the flow, but also realize that my maternity leave is half over already and we'll need to have some level of routine figured out by the time I go back to work... so we'll see how it goes! 

Breastfeeding has been great in the sense that my body has adjusted to what it needs to do and Adeline took to nursing easily despite us not being able to start right away (she was in NICU for 6 days and had a feeding tube for most of that time). The downside is that we haven't figured out any level of modesty with it yet so leaving the house usually involves me worrying the whole time that she's going to want to eat and I won't be able to feed her without locking myself in a bathroom stall somewhere for 20 minutes. I know it will continue to get easier with time, and for now I'm just grateful that it's working out since I wasn't at all optimistic about it during my pregnancy. 

Adeline is thankfully kind of a champ in the sleep department and is already giving us a good 4-5 hour stretch of sleep most nights... one of the positives to having a preemie. Based on what I've heard from others, it sounds like my sleep deprivation is nothing compared to what it could be... but that doesn't mean I'm not exhausted and I have to work verrrrrry hard to not take that out on the hubs :) who as I have mentioned many times before is seriously a saint for dealing with me on a daily basis.

So, life is blissfully full of cuddling, nursing, singing songs, changing diapers, naps, tummy time, trying to memorize every little face Adeline makes and calling her every single nickname I can possibly think of (Munchkin Face is the current favorite). I'll hopefully get back to blogging more regularly at some point, but in the meantime if you think Adeline is as cute as I do, click over to my Instagram feed for the day to day! 

photos by Michele V. Wagner Photography. See more here!

All the Pretty Baby Things

/ / The unnecessary but absolutely adorable little bitties / /

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I've spent a GREAT deal of time over the last month scouring Pinterest, blogs, Lucie's List and the like trying to get our baby registry in tip-top shape. The hubs has been a huge help in reading review after review of the bigger ticket items to make sure we're picking the best items that are still budget conscious, and I think we're at a point now where the registry is in a pretty good place! I'm certain there other are things we'll learn we need once baby arrives, but the hope is that we'll be decently prepared with the basics and a whole bunch of adorable clothes :). 

I was originally going to register on BabyList because I loved the idea of being able to choose items from anywhere on the web, but quickly realized it's not the most user-friendly system for people who don't shop online. So instead, I've left it just for the "extras"... you know, the things that aren't necessary but are so insanely cute and (thrilling to me) beautifully designed I just can't get over them. Here's a roundup of some of my favorites!

  • Baby's First Year - I honestly kicked around the idea of not getting a baby book because I didn't want the pressure of keeping up with one, but the prompts in this one are simple and thanks to being able to order prints of photos straight from my phone with just a couple clicks I think I can manage!
  • Mom's One Line a Day - I've started reading a short and sweet daily devotional and I'm hoping that I'll be able to keep finding 5 minutes a day for it even when baby arrives. I've got to be able to add in a one line a day journal entry in there, right?! (Go ahead seasoned moms, laugh!)
  • Jelly Cat Bashful Plush Bunny & Lamb - I adore these stuffed animals and love picturing our little one dragging them around with her everywhere she goes. And the soothie security blanket kinda looks like the Buddy Louie which I thought was perfect!
  • Donut Rattle & Pizza Teether - gotta represent mine and hub's favorite foods. And without the carbs or sugar!
  • Modern Burlap Muslin Swaddles - these are just gorgeous, and I love the phrases and Bible verses on them. Thanks to instagram, I am also well aware that these work wonderfully as photo backdrops :).
  • Freshly Picked Moccasins - ok, so I generally don't even spend this much on a pair of shoes for myself and I wish these cost less, but these babies have a cult following and I'm admittedly a little obsessed with them. Metallics match everything as far as I'm concerned and I'm generally not a fan of other baby shoes, so I can see baby wearing these nonstop.
  • Monthly Stickers - for alllllll the photos I know I'll be taking!

Hi, Third Trimester

/ / When the weeks til baby are almost single digits... / /

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Well friends, just like that, I'm in my third trimester and this whole baby thing is getting really real!

The hubs and I have been in major nesting mode - registering for baby, putting together the nursery, cleaning and organizing the house, and cherishing the time we have just the two of us before we officially become parents in just a couple of months. I cannot say enough amazing things about Dan and how much he's taken care of me through my pregnancy, and maybe it's the hormones but lately I find myself more and more just thinking about how absolutely lucky I am to be sharing my life with such an incredible guy. I can't wait to see him with our daughter!

And speaking of taking care of me... I somehow managed to pass the gestational diabetes screen that my doctors seemed convinced I would fail, which was HUGE for me and gave me the exact boost of confidence I needed in the midst of a somewhat complicated pregnancy that I can do this. As I'm sure is the case for most anyone, when I really stop and think about it I recognize that this whole thing could be WAY worse and my complications are frustrating but not the end of the world. I have good days and bad days and have learned to let the bad days happen when they need to, but not to let them take over. Thankfully, the last month or so has been full of much more good - I passed the screening, my vision is stabilized so my doctor dropped my medication dosage which so so so amazingly allowed me to start sleeping again, and thanks to a prenatal massage the AWFUL sciatica I had for several weeks that had me in tears daily is gone. I definitely have my fair share of other random pregnancy side effects (acid reflux all the time anyone?) but for the most part, I'm just so amazed by what's happening with my body that they don't bother me too much. 

We're just 11 weeks away from my due date, and the list of things to do is quickly getting longer. While I'm sure I have lots of waddling, middle of the night bathroom trips and swollen ankles ahead of me, my fingers are crossed that the long home stretch remains far less dramatic than the beginning of this pregnancy was!

Catching Up

//  A bit of a weekend brain dump  //

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Life has been incredibly busy lately, friends. But really, when is it not? I kind of honestly love it that way, but it certainly gets stressful when so many things feel out of your control, and I’ve had a bit of that lately with my health.

A few weeks ago, I FINALLY got the necessary spinal tap that led to a real diagnosis for my eye, and it’s unfortunately officially linked to my pregnancy. This means I’m on meds at least until The Littlest Lawler arrives to try and make sure I don't lose more vision permanently, and I’m under close watch by my OB and my neuro-opthomologist for the next several months. We have lots of questions for them regarding my delivery, future pregnancies and my health after the baby comes, so there’s a lot going on there. But, I’m grateful for a real diagnosis and for doctors who are carefully monitoring everything. Minus my vision problems, I’m feeling pretty good, so I really can’t complain too much. I’m definitely starting to see some side effects from the meds I’m on that I’m not thrilled about (puffy face, flushing in my skin, trouble sleeping), but I’m trying to focus on the positive and not get too hung up on what I look like. I have my share of bad days where I can't believe this is all happening and wonder "why me?" but I WANT to remember this pregnancy as good times regardless of the diagnosis, so I'm working on it.

We were scheduled to find out if baby is a boy or a girl last week... but the little stinker didn't want to show off and we left still guessing. I’m 110% convinced it’s a girl, while the hubs is just as certain it’s a boy, so we’re definitely in for a surprise either way when we do find out! Thankfully, everything the tech could see looked great and The Littlest Lawler is measuring right where he or she should be at this point. We spent a couple hours at Buy Buy Baby looking at strollers and carseats and the like a few weekends ago, and I’m looking forward to starting on a registry once we know what we’re expecting. I’m a huge fan of neutral items when it comes to the big stuff, but I’ve also seen a bunch of very-boy items and very-girl items that I ADORE so I can’t wait to pick and choose those things as well.

I’m also super anxious to get started on the nursery! This is another area that will be fairly gender-neutral, but again, I’ve seen lots of little touches that I imagine will skew it one way or the other. I never thought I’d be a fan of really girly stuff, but the crib I’ve oogled for years comes in a really light blush pink and I’m kind of obsessed with it thinking about having a girl… We shall see! Thanks to my planning and thinking this pregnancy would happen ages ago, I’ve been collecting items for years and we’re already in decent shape for some of the big ticket stuff. I have my dream rocking chair and picked out an ottoman to go with it, along with a floor lamp from Ikea that I love. I already have a white campaign dresser that we’re planning to also use as a changing table, and we also have a white bookshelf with nowhere to go that will likely stay in that room as long as space allows. The closet is huge and completely empty so we’ll need to configure that which I unfortunately know is a bit of an investment, but I’m thinking we’ll keep it pretty simple so it works throughout the years. Other than that I’m planning on a gallery wall (no surprise there I’m sure) and looking forward to selecting curtains and a light fixture as the room comes together!

I've said it before and I'll probably say it again before it sticks, but I truly do hope to get back on the blogging bandwagon moving forward... if for nothing else than to keep a little journal of sorts of these months while we wait to meet The Littlest Lawler!