Monday, November 9, 2015

Closing Up Shop

I'm sure my faithful readers have noticed a lag in my posting. Or the fact that I'm pretty much only posting about Healey's weekly updates. 

Life with two children is hard. Especially being a working mom with not a normal M-F, 8am-5pm schedule. It's hard that Puff's job is a 35-40 minute commute away these days. I take the girls to school, work all day, pick the girls up, take them home, get stuff ready for the next day, get them fed, and then eventually Puff comes home. 

Then there are nights we have to run errands or go to the grocery or I have to work late or there's ballet class. 

I love my life. I love my husband and my girls. (Gosh, I love those girls.)

And I love writing. But I don't love it as much as I love everything else that's more important right now. 

Although, technically, things like cooking and cleaning and laundry are more important... and I don't love those things so much.

I've noticed a lot of blogs I read are taking breaks... Camp Patton, Young House Love, etc. And now I know why. It's hard to feel so obligated to this thing. It becomes a chore. 

I want to keep up with Healey's weekly updates, but I probably will do them in a word document to save for her, versus posting them all over the InterGoogle.

I've cleared my pre-written posts out. They've all been posted. I even deleted a few that weren't all that stellar, just because it wasn't worth it to post. I never got around to writing about our apple picking excursion, my parent's visit to town, or Healey's first beach vacation in Charleston. And I hate that. But I have my photos. I have my private blog. I have my memories and my scrapbook. (Although scrapbooking is also getting the boot at the end of 2015.)

Maybe one day, when the kids are bigger, I'll find time for myself again. Time to refocus and get this blog back to what I wanted it to be in the first place... tales of a rushing life... tales of vacations and adventures and things to do to keep your life full and busy. It's drifted away a lot from that since we've had kids. I know it's still in me somewhere to get back to that.

So, for now, thank you for reading. Thank you for following my family's story as it has morphed and changed over the past few years. Here's hoping I can get back soon. 

In the mean time, take care of yourself. And remember... Don't rush through life, rush TOWARD it. 

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Healey 20:52

Photo copyright of Rushing Life
 
This week, Healey found her voice! She just started babbling on Sunday and it is the cutest thing ever. She is so content and sweet when she chats. She squeals too. And we heard her first real, honest, giggles too! 

We visited with friends and she LOVED the activity mat with the bar over it that her baby had, so I just had to go buy her one. Bimmer helped me put it together and Healey loves hers too! I like that she turns and almost has to roll to reach the farthest ones. Since she can't roll over yet, I am hoping this will encourage her to do so. Although then I can't leave her unattended on the bed anymore! Pros and cons, right? 

Healey also had her first Halloween. She was a champ during trick-or-treat and everyone loved our little bumble bee. Puff and I are already trying to think of what to dress her as for next year! I'm hoping I can come up with a theme while the girls are young enough to think that's still cool. 

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Healey 19:52

Photo copyright of Rushing Life
 
My sweet Healey's two bottom teeth are pretty much all the way in now, and she was a rockstar about it. No extra fussiness or anything! God bless my children whom, thus far, have been awesome at teething! And now that they are in farther, there's a wee bit less drool. For the moment, anyway.
 
She has been a sleeping rockstar too lately... for awhile, actually. I'd say, on an average night, she takes a short nap sometime in the early evening, and we always wake her then around 9pm to give her a bottle. Then she has slept as late as 6am on some occasions. She will typically go 6 to 8 hours at night. Yes, she's still in bed with me. But we don't have much option on that right now, without rearranging (or selling) furniture. Which I refuse to do until we make up our minds on whether or not we are moving/renovating. Which is another long post for another day.
 
I've been practicing with her more and more on her sitting up and her rolling over. I think the key to getting her to finally roll over might be to try to suck her snot out with the aspirator. She is not a fan.
 
She had her 4 month check-up this week too. She weighs in at 17 lbs. 11.5 oz, which puts her in the 95%. She was 99% in her length! She has had a little cough the past few weeks and it is just the most pathetic thing. When she coughs in her sleep, when she finishes, she makes the saddest little face. I also love her face when she takes her middle of the night bottles. When she's finished, she puckers her lips in a little duck face. She only does it when she's going to sleep after a bottle. I cling to those little things... because she's growing so fast that I know they will disappear before I know it, and I just want to soak up every second of my last baby.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Three Years of Awesome

I'm not sure I ever shared Bimmer's professional 3 year old photos! We had flown our photographer down to SC from The Fort to take Healey's newborn photos, and she was rockstar enough to also do Bimmer's yearly pics. I am such a sucker for good photos... and she didn't disappoint!
 
My first born... my heart...





 

She is such a growing girl. I find myself expecting so much from her, but then having to step back and remember that she's only 3. She is too smart for her own good. She is not a very good listener. (Terrible 2's are not a thing, but there is such a thing as a "threenager.") She can be the sweetest, most helpful girl... if she wants to be. She loves Paw Patrol and reading books. She takes ballet and wants to help Mommy exercise at home. She is a great big sister who loves to give Healey big squeezing hugs and who tries to calm her down if she's crying. Mommy is clinging to the things she says incorrectly, like "maz-uh-gine" and "structions" and "Bloop Loops." It warmed my hear to hear her call a pumpkin a "punk-man" the other day. I thought I'd only get one year of that. I feel blessed to have two. 

There are days that she's not my favorite child (because, yes, this is reality and somedays when she's being a brat, I like the little one a wee bit better) but gosh I love her to pieces. I just know she is going to give me a run for my money as she gets older. And I wouldn't have it any other way. She's amazing and I'm so blessed she's mine. 

Friday, October 23, 2015

Healey 17 & 18:52

Yikes - I'm totally behind on blogging. There will be a few coming up shortly I promise, and then an announcement on something that's been brewing for awhile. In the meantime, here are Healey's 17 and 18 week updates in one :)

Photo is copyright Rushing Life
 
My sweet, quiet baby has started to talk just a teensy bit more than in recent weeks. I love to hear her voice, but don't get to hear it very often. She only cries if she's hungry, tired, or having a diva moment and needs to be held. 9 times out of 10, if you pick her up, she stops crying immediately. She still loves to just look around and observe. 

She has found her feet and loves to grab them. She hasn't made them to her mouth yet though. I'm noticing that when people call her by name, she seems to smile most of the time. Maybe she knows her name??? Or she just loves the attention. She wants to sit up so badly... she is constantly leaning up in her car seat to try to sit up. I'm hopeful she will start to sit on her own here soon. It would be great if she could by Halloween so I can get photos of her sitting up in her costume! Because, let's be real... photos of Bimmer holding her are quite hilarious.

Oh yeah, and she got her two bottom teeth!!!


Photo is copyright Rushing Life
 
Spit bubbles.

That's our big accomplishment this week. She has figured out how to blow giant spit bubbles and insists on doing it all the time. If you sputter your lips back at her, she smiles and then blows more spit. Major things happening here. 

She could be close to rolling over if she would try harder. But she just is content to stay pretty stationary. If you give her a little push, it really just has to be a LITTLE one, because she could roll if she wanted to. I'm not always a super fan of that milestone though - because then elevated surfaces become a lot more treacherous. 

She has sat up by herself for maybe a max of 20 seconds. I'm banking on her being able to sit up by 5 months, since she didn't hit the 4 month mark like her over-achieving big sister did. 

She is also such a Daddy's girl lately! I honestly hope she stays that way for him. It's so sweet to see her light up when she sees him. 

Friday, October 9, 2015

Healey 16:52


This photo is copyright Rushing Life
 
Healey was out and about a lot this week. She hit up plenty of stores and restaurants and her first Oktoberfest. She survived some of the worst rains our state has ever seen. (Thankfully we didn't experience any flooding near our house.) And as long as she had her bottles regularly and got plenty of snuggles and sleep, she was content to do whatever we were.
 
I've noticed her being pretty quiet the past week or two. She doesn't babble like Bimmer did at this age. She's just a quiet baby, I suppose. She has her 4 month well-visit later this month, so I'll be sure to ask about that. I can only compare her to her big sister, since that's all I know. I know that Bimmer was a jabbery baby and that she sat up around 4 months old. She also could scoot herself backward when she was mad and would dig in her heels. She also was much more interested in trying to hold toys. Healey is quiet. She is fairly close to sitting up by herself though, which I am excited about. It hasn't occurred to her yet to dig her heels into the bed when she cries, which I'm happy about. She can roll from her back to her side though, so we need to start being more vigilant about her being on our bed. And just this week, I've actually seen her holding a few toys and trying to chew on them. And reaching for them too. She is also sometimes putting her hands on her bottle to try to hold it.
 
She is so tolerant of her big sister... who sometimes seems like she's going to squeeze Healey so hard that her head will pop off. Sometimes she gives me a look of "Mommy, save me from this crazy person" and others she's content to smile and try to laugh at her big sis. She's so fast to smile... when she smiles, it's super quick and then she goes back to her stone cold observing face. It's pretty hilarious. But when she does smile, it melts my heart.

Monday, October 5, 2015

6 Weeks Thinner

Overview: At 9 weeks post-partum, I realized I was going back to work in 3 1/2 weeks and urgently needed to lose some more baby weight! I started going to the gym sporadically at 7 weeks post-partum and during one of my visits, I saw a "Healthy Eating Challenge" sign on the wall. Listen... dieting is sooooo hard for me because I am a super picky eater! It's near impossible for me to just cold turkey start eating everything healthy. So when I saw this 12 week challenge, I was down for it. I love a good list and countdown! And when Puff agreed to do it with me, I was super excited to see if we could do it!
 
Goals: I needed to lose 10 pounds to get back to my "pants should fit" weight, 13 pounds til my "pre-baby" weight, 15 pounds til my "preferred" weight, and 20 pounds til my "I wish I could always maintain this" weight. Our focus each week would be that week's challenge item. Of course, we would also attempt to make wise food decisions outside of that, and I would realistically hope to get to the gym twice each week. I was already doing crunches and planks at home each day too. Our hope was that after a week of doing each challenge, it would become more habit and we could try to keep at it!
 
Can't believe I'm about to post this grossness on the InterGoogle, but here are my before pics of the day I started this whole mess. (Down 40 pounds from the end of my pregnancy!)
 


 
Week 1 Challenge: Water Only!!! No soda, tea, juice, or alcohol.
Modifications: Puff was concerned about not getting any caffeine, so we agreed if he really needed it, he could use a Crystal Light packet.
Verdict: I have never needed a Coke in my life more than I did at the end of this week! Driving past a McDonald's was the biggest test of my will power in history. I was reminded that sometimes water at a restaurant tastes like they washed the dishes in it. But hey... I lost a pound!
 
Week 2 Challenge: No sweets!!! No cookies, candy, ice cream, cake, etc. Substitute fresh fruit instead.
Modifications: I decided not to beat myself up if I had to reach for a pineapple fruit cup instead of fresh fruit.
Verdict: It was easier than I expected it to be, and I was only really tempted one night to cheat. I did indulge in 2 sodas this week, since I was deprived the week prior. I had one cheat meal (at Olive Garden) but otherwise, I watched what I ate. And I lost ZERO pounds. Talk about a kick in the face. I thus concluded that giving up sweets is not helpful to a diet, so why bother? Puff was down 4 pounds at this point. And I hated him.
 
Week 3 Challenge: No chips/crackers!!! (This was the one that Puff was scared most about! He loves salty snacks!)
Modifications: None
Verdict: This was harder for me than anticipated, but I lost TWO pounds by the end of the week. Don't worry, my parents were then in town for Labor Day (which meant eating out every meal for 3.5 days) and I gained those pounds back by the next Monday. Ugh! I did, however, notice that I didn't feel great after all of that previously normal eating. Which I guess is a good thing!
 
Week 4 Challenge: Don't skip meals & have protein for breakfast!!! (This was the week I started back to work!)
Modifications: None
Verdict: I lost the two pounds I had gained back from the week before, PLUS one more! This week was actually an eye-opener. It showed me how much eating something as simple as a rice cake with peanut butter could hold me over until lunch way better than a Poptart ever could. I also started drinking Naked protein drinks on occasion. This seemed to be the one week that would carry on easily into my normal routine. 
 
Week 5 Challenge: Eat your vegetables!!! (This was the one I was most scared about. I do NOT like veggies!)
Modifications: None
Verdict: I say there were no modifications, but you've got to count lettuce as a serious veggie, because that's what happened this week. A whole lot of salads. And some celery. We also were at the beach for a few days this week, so we definitely didn't stick to any sort of real diet this week. Nor did I make it to the gym at all. Only bright side? I didn't gain anything, but I didn't lose anything either. With all those pina coladas, I'd say that's a victory.
 
Week 6 Challenge: Go 100% whole grain!!! If you must eat bread, pasta, rice, etc. this week, make sure the label reads "WHOLE GRAIN."
Modifications: A whole shit ton... 
Verdict: I basically considered this a gluten free week, since I hadn't gone shopping to actually pick up anything made with whole grain. The first day was a bust. I was so hungry by the time dinner rolled around, that I caved to Bimmer's request for pizza and stuffed my face with some Little Caesar's. The second day wasn't any better...poptart for dinner. Life was just kicking me in the ass, so the last thing on my mind was worrying about a diet. Basically, the whole week was a bust. But I did lose a pound. The lesson is that a pan of brownies will ultimately help you lose a pound. 
 
Alright... so we're at the halfway point. And how have we done so far???
 
(Here is where I would insert "after" photos but dammit, life has just gotten the better of me.)
 
I have lost 5 pounds in 6 weeks. 

Would I have hoped for more? Sure. Am I OK with this since I'm technically moving in the right direction? Sure. Would I love to be back down to my pre-baby size by the end of the next 6 weeks? Hey... it's always good to have goals! 
 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Healey 15:52

This photo is copyright Rushing Life


My sweet little love-muffin. She lasted a full week at daycare and only pooped on her clothes once. But she didn't get sent home sick, so yay for minor victories in life! 

A few nights this week, she slept from 9pm-5am and then the next night, from 9pm-6am! WINNING!!! 

We're getting into a routine with life in general and she's been a trooper through it all. I am so blessed to have two wonderful daughters. I'm so thankful that this one is pretty laid back and go-with-the-flow. She's such a blessing to our little family! "Lolo" makes us complete! 

Monday, September 28, 2015

Pinterest Reno

Puff and I struggle daily with the decision on whether or not to move or to invest in The Bungalow and make it larger. I am pretty sure my indecisiveness trumps the whole "do we want a second baby" dilemma by like twenty million times. I am stalking real estate daily, contemplating other neighborhoods, and searching for comp sales whenever possible. Just in case. On the flip side, my Pinterest page is covered with pins eluding to the fact that we may renovate.
 
If we did stay here, what would we do? Well, the plan in my head involves finishing our current attic space to house a playroom and a guest sleeping area. Then turning our current laundry area into a kitchen pantry and appliance area. And creating an addition with a master suite (with a GIANT walk-in closet) and a laundry room. Could I live through a renovation? That's up in the air. Anyhoo... thought I would share some of the ideas I've got floating around in my head. (All photos found on Pinterest)
 







 
 
Can you tell I have a pretty distinct style? One that is not currently reflected in my home? Thank you garnet couch. (Which I hate, but hides toddler stains and baby spit-up pretty magically... so it shall stay for at least a few more years!)
 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Healey 14:52

Photo is copyright of Rushing Life
 
This week, Healey went on her first vacation!!! I'll update more on that in a separate post, but she did so well. She was a champ in her car seat, slept great, was able to hang with all our running about, and besides a massive blow-out diaper at a restaurant, she was a total travel rockstar! You know that makes this mama proud! And excited about future trips! 

She has gotten herself on a pretty normal sleep/eat schedule, which I love. It's happened pretty naturally, but she has a bottle shortly after we get home each evening and then another one around 9pm for bed. She goes straight down to sleep and has been sleeping most nights until 4am before she wakes up. She has her bottle and goes right back out. I know she's not taking huge long naps at daycare, but it seems to be working for us, so I'll take it. Getting up once a night and then right back to sleep ain't nothing to bitch about! Yes, she still sleeps in the bed with me, but I don't mind since she is on the other side (where Puff used to sleep.. LOL) until her bottle. After that, she usually is wiggly unless I snuggle her. But I not-so-secretly love it, so I'm fine with an hour or so of cuddles each morning. I feel like it's such a blessing I get to do some co-sleeping, since I wasn't sure I would get to with her being the second child.

She is just starting to get a little more friendly with the idea of holding a toy. Mostly she's content to play with a dress she's wearing or a bib, or to gnaw on a blanket/burp cloth/lovie. I can't wait for her to start wanting to play with toys. Although I'm sure her big sister isn't too keen on that idea! 
 

Monday, September 21, 2015

Healey 13:52

(This photo is copyright of Rushing Life)
 
My sweet, sweet girl. She is doing great at daycare. She is being a sweet and chill little sister when Bimmer wants to paw all over her (and hug her way too tightly). She is only waking up once in the middle of the night to eat. But at 4:30am she always wants to cuddle. And I'm happy to oblige. I have no idea where the time has gone... I think she'll be sitting up on her own before too long! I just love her more than words.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Table Rock

OK... Confession time. I tried to post this sometime last week, but I was having trouble uploading photos, so I gave up. Then I started back to work and I'm just a wee bit overwhelmed with all of life these days. So I thought I'd give it another shot... and the pictures STILL wouldn't upload. So, ya know, you're just going to have to forgive me.

Back in August, Puff and I took the girls on their first trek to the mountains at Jones Gap. (You can read about that trip HERE). After it was such a hit with Bimmer, and felt like old times for the grown-ups, we decided we wanted to head back that way one more time before summer was over.

(insert pic at overlook)
 
This time, we opted for Table Rock State Park. We had been there years ago (when I was pregnant with Bimmer) and attempted a fairly moderate trail. Puff always griped that we never finished the loop, since I wasn't comfortable climbing across rocks while 30+ weeks preggers. So we thought maybe we would try it again with the girls. As you can see, Healey was thrilled...
 
(insert pic in car)
 
The first part of the hike, from the welcome center/visitors station/check-in doo-hickey place, the first part of the trail is actually several trails all running together, that branch off after a little while. This stretch was great for me carrying the baby and for Bimmer to be able to do her thing.
 
(insert pic with girls)
 
There were also pools to stop and check out, and had it been super hot, it would have been a great place to chill out for awhile.
 
(insert bent over pic)
 
However, this time we opted to go toward the RIGHT when the trail split (we had gone LEFT last time) and it started to go pretty straight up hill, pretty quickly. Between my extra weight with Healey on my chest and Puff having to occasionally carry Bimmer, we never even made it to the first trail intersection. I found out later that Puff had lied (or omitted information) about the trail... telling me it was an "easy" trail that shouldn't take any more "than an hour" when really it was listed as "moderate" and was 2 miles long... which going up hill with two kids, wouldn't exactly be a day in the park.
 
I was content with what we attempted and Bimmer had fun and Healey got some fresh air. Next time, we'll know better. Or I will know better to do some more research before taking the girls out. Next summer, Healey will fit in the backpack, so Puff will get to carry her!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Healey 12:52

Such a tough guy :)
 
Healey started school this week. I was a bit of an internal mess, but didn't actually shed any tears. It helped that she was so content with the teacher when I handed her over. Here's hoping that since she is a little big younger (Bimmer was 7 months when she started daycare and that was rough to watch her cry when I left each morning) she will be a total rockstar.
 
She has become quite the little chatterbox this week. Or well, compared to what she had been. She still can't get a word in edgewise with a father and big sister who never shut up. (Yes, I'm the quiet one in this family! Believe it or not!) When she's alone and in a happy mood, she just loves to chat. You talk to her and then give her a second and she'll start to make noises back at you. I can't decide if she is going to always be chill and quiet and let Bimmer run the show, or if one of these days she's just going to bust out with being a wild child and give us all a run for our money.
 
This week, we also put her in her Bjorn facing forward for the first time. Her little neck isn't quite 100% wobble-free yet, but she's pretty close. And she loved being able to look out and see stuff, versus being forced to stare at my chest. It's also a lifesaver for those times when you just can't push a stroller... like our excursion to NC to go apple picking. (More on that in an upcoming post!) Hard to believe it's true, but my little girl is growing up!
 
P.S. This photo is copyright by Rushing Life, even though I didn't have time to watermark

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Quit Growing

This morning, my house is eerily quiet. As in, the most quiet it has been since I don't know how long. I've got the TV off and both girls are at school. Yup... today was Healey's first day at daycare. She's been there an hour, and so far, so good. I've not even cried yet! But since my little one is such a big girl today, I thought I'd share some of the professional newborn photos we had done back in June. Hard to believe I go back to work tomorrow and this was already almost 3 months ago! Where does the time go???





Friday, September 4, 2015

Healey 11:52





This is the last weekly photo before Healey starts daycare and I go back to work. I swear these have been the fastest weeks of my entire life. I am having mixed feelings about going back to work, but I know that being a SAHM is not in the cards for me. And that's OK. I just have to keep telling myself that it's the quality of time, not the quantity, that really matters with the girls. I am still a good mom, even if I am a working mom.
 
Healey is such a sweet baby and I am so madly in love with her. My favorite thing about her these days is her smile. It always starts with her face just lighting up and her smiling with her eyes. (Tyra Banks would be proud.) Then it starts as a lopsided smile and you can sometimes see her one little dimple. Then her entire face just gets consumed in her smile. Her eyes squint and her nose scrunches up. Lately, she even has been making a sound when she smiles that big... a precursor to a laugh, perhaps. I know a sweet baby giggle isn't too far off.
 
She loves to be laid on her back (when she's not tired or hungry) so she can just kick and wiggle. She is hell-bent on sucking on her hand/fingers sometimes. It's adorable to watch her try to get her hand in her mouth. Her aim isn't quite there, so sometimes she gets her hand up to her eye and then her arm slowly inches down her face into her mouth. You can see how proud of herself she is sometimes when she gets her thumb in her mouth just right. Since we've nixed the pacifier all together (hooray!!!) her thumb is what she's got to work with.
 
Girl still doesn't have any interest in holding toys, but she doesn't get as mad if you put one in her hand - she just drops it immediately. She loves to sit on my lap and play peek-a-boo. She loves to be held where she can look around and check everything out. One day, I had her in my lap and she was straining to turn her head to find the television. What can I say? Girl loves her some "Dexter." (Which I did finish, btw. I've never binge-watched a show before - I think I will recap that in another post.)
 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Big Week, Big Girl

Last week was a pretty big week for Bimmer - even if she doesn't quite realize it.

First off, she officially moved into the K3 class at her preschool.



 
So far, I like her teacher. But Bimmer always does better in a smaller classroom, and her K3 class has 15 kids. I got a note home her second day about Bimmer not making wise decisions and not listening. Hopefully the threats of taking away any TV time at home if she's bad at school will work!
 
She also finally started her dance class!
 

 
I was very proud of her in that class. We can watch via closed-circuit TV into her classroom and she appeared to follow directions and participate appropriately. Hard to believe I'm going to be a "dance mom" and spend every Friday night in the studio between now and the end of May 2016. But so far, she loves it. And that's all that matters.
 
Get your twirl on girl!
 
(P.S. All photos are copyright of Rushing Life - even though I didn't watermark them this entry.)

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Healey 10:52

 
Can someone tell this girl to slow it down already? I busted out some of the 6 month clothes and um, hello, some of it already fits her perfectly! Outta control!!!
 
This week there were two nights that Puff kept Healey all night, while I tended to a sick Bimmer. Yes, I finally, after 2 1/2 months, felt comfortable letting him handle her over night. Don't worry - both nights he kept her, she slept for 6+ hours to start off the night. The night I had her in between? She woke up every 3 hours. Because of course that's how it would happen.
 
She is getting some practice in her Bumbo and holding her head up better. I've caught her being very intrigued by the TV if it catches her attention. Maybe sitting all day binge watching "Dexter" isn't the best idea??? Or maybe she'll just appreciate good television when she sees it?
 
For as well as she is doing with sleeping on her own, there was a time or two this past week where she just was very insistent on needing me to hold her to fall asleep. And I was totally OK with that. I will take snuggles from both of my girls for as long as they will give them to me!
 
She had her 2 month well-visit and she is up to 14 lbs. 7 oz. and is in the 94% for weight and 97% for length. My big ol' growing girl!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Post Partum Pooch

Ugh... bitchfest time.
 
I am 10 weeks post-partum and I'm still wearing my maternity shorts. And that does not make anyone feel good about themselves.
 
OK... let me back up. At the end of it all, I gained 53 pounds this pregnancy. That's a shit ton of weight, people.
 
 
 
I can't believe I am sharing this photo, but here I am 3 days after giving birth. It's just a sweet photo of me, my girls, and my dad. I was still in the hospital. I had been pumped full of fluids. I am not a fan of hospital photos of the mom. I'm not the mom who can look like a super model right away. I sure wish I was though!!!
 
 
 
Then a really amazing thing happened after I got home... the weight started falling off. Insanely fast. Like a few pounds a day some days. I was occasionally drinking an Herbalife shake as a meal supplement, and my appetite was drastically smaller than it had been during the pregnancy, but obviously, I could barely move some days because of my c-section recovery, so there wasn't any exercise happening. I was so pleased with my results and by the time a month rolled around, I was down to only needing to lose 16 pounds. I was still wearing maternity bottoms, but could fit into some of my non-maternity t-shirts and looser fitting other shirts. I still wasn't keen on having photos taken of myself (especially my face - I hate that my face gains weight) but I was getting there.
 
 
 
But then it happened... I hit a wall. After that point, I lost no more weight. I came to 7 1/2 weeks post-partum and realized I was *STILL* griping about needing to lose 16 pounds. I needed to get serious. I needed to find time to exercise and the will power and motivation to alter my diet. Going back to work is lingering... and I cannot go back to work wearing maternity clothes. And I absolutely will not go and buy an entire new wardrobe either. Those 16 pounds... had to GO!!!
 
It was time to start exercising. I started doing crunches and planks and leg lifts (or whatever they're actually called) every day. I would do squats and lunges while holding Healey during her fussy-need to be held spells. And I finally got Puff to agree to keep both girls for a little while so I could hit up the gym. I didn't want to purchase a membership yet, at this point, since I wasn't sure which gym I wanted to commit to. I had wanted a personal trainer... I was talking before this pregnancy that if it ever happened, I would absolutely NEED a trainer. (And a different one from my last one - which meant a new gym.) Still no trainer yet, but I'm not completely ruling out the possibility.
 
I managed to go to the gym twice that first weekend I committed to losing. I even surprised myself because I had been thinking ten minutes would kick my ass, but I managed to do 20 minutes on the elliptical both times - and at a speed I used to maintain pre-baby. Unfortunately, Puff isn't the best motivator and convincing him to take time to keep the girls so I could exercise was hard.
 
But after 3 days of trying to eat better and 3 times to the gym, I lost a pound. ONE POUND. But you know what? That was a pound that I hadn't been able to lose in the entire previous month. I also found a 12 week diet challenge that I have convinced Puff to join me on. I will update you once I am into that - or finished. Here's hoping it helps!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Healey 9:52

I remember when Healey was only a week old and I heard the doctor mention a heart murmur.
 
 
 
Did I hear her correctly? Was there really something possibly that seriously wrong with my perfect, brand new little baby?
 
My mind was put at ease when two different pediatricians both said it was very mild, and that they weren't majorly concerned about it. Yet, they wanted us to visit a cardiologist just to make sure. We had our consultation this week. I had done pretty well over the 7 weeks in between that first mention of it and our appointment, of putting it in the back of my mind. I focused on all her snuggles and sweet smiles and didn't focus on the possibility that something could be wrong. I was a ball of nerves going into the appointment. I just couldn't imagine what I would think or do if they said it wasn't good.
 
After waiting forever, having the nurse take Healey's blood pressure what felt like 10 times, they then hooked her up to an EKG. She was good and sweet during that, but seeing your baby hooked up to about 20 different cords was heartbreaking! A resident came and listened to her heart, and then the actual doc. They both agreed they thought it was something very minor, but wanted to do an ECHO just in case. Of course, more waiting. Having your 2 month old baby lay still for that ultrasound was rough! We tried everything... music, singing, noises, Baby Einstein video, me holding her. Finally they gave us some sugar water to put on her pacifier (since she's decided she really doesn't want the paci anymore) and we were able to get what they needed.
 
The final verdict? She has VSD, which means she has a small hole in the part of her heart that separates the ventricles. The left ventricle (I think) has more pressure, so it squirts blood into the right one and makes a noise. The doctor confirmed that Healey won't need any surgery and she will live a completely normal life! They are even hopeful that it may heal up on its own eventually. We will just make yearly visits to the cardiologist for now, but we seem to be in the clear.
 
This baby is too young to be giving me such heart attacks! I'm going to be a mess when these girls are teenagers!


Monday, August 17, 2015

Life Lately: Baby Edition

Preface: Anyone else shop the Lilly sale this morning? When I first signed on, there were 42,000+ people ahead of me in line! I took that opportunity to get the girls ready, take Bimmer to school, and give Healey a bath. Of course it let me into the sale just as I was getting Healey dressed, so the poor girl had to chill out in her diaper while I did some shopping! I got Bimmer her Easter dress and some shorts and then went back an hour later and got myself a tank top and Healey a bathing suit. I was disappointed in the baby selection. Score anything good???

I go back to work the week after Labor Day, so I'm basically counting down days now, versus months. I have mixed emotions - I definitely have been going a little stir crazy being cooped up at home during this maternity leave, but I will definitely miss my naps. Especially the snuggly ones. It's no surprise to anyone that I take a lot of photos, and being home all day long with a cute little baby, I definitely snap quite a few of her. Maybe each day? Definitely each day... who are we trying to kid here?
 
So, today, just a smattering of some recent pics of my sweet, growing girl. My last baby. The last time I will ever have a 2 month old to call my own!
 




 
 

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Tiny Dancer

For whatever reason, Puff is super adamant that Bimmer take dance class. I took 9 years of it myself when I was young, starting when I was 4. For at least the past year, Puff has been bugging me to look into classes for Bimmer. Does he realize she *JUST* turned 3? I'm not into making some Tiger Woods prodigy here, bucko. She's a kid... there will be plenty of time for involvement.
 
 
 
And that involvement starts at the end of the month.
 
Once a week.
 
Until mid-May.
 
I really think Puff has no idea what he has gotten us into. I'm on board, as long as I don't become the sole dance ferry over here. I want her to do this, and more importantly, SHE wants to do this, but I can't do it alone.
 
 
 
We took Bimmer shopping last week to get all of her necessary dance gear. This sweet girl is so excited. She cannot wait to take ballet and use her "quiet tap" shoes too. (Still trying to figure that one out!)
 
 
 
I am so thankful that we are fortunate enough to give Bimmer these opportunities. I hope she enjoys it as much once she starts participating as she is enjoying the pomp and circumstance of the build-up.
 
Now where is my chauffer's cap?

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Healey 8:52

 
Only four more weeks at home with this sweet snuggler! Ack... don't remind me!!!
 
I've noticed her being a lot more vocal this week... more coos and gurgles. She's also become a bit drooly. Not excessively, by any means, but just, at all. Whereas she hadn't been before. She smiles big toothless grins that take up her entire face. She loves her big sister and wants to watch her every move. She is almost ready to outgrow her size 1 diapers and has outgrown some of her smaller sleepers because she's getting too long. She is the most farty baby I know. I need to cut her finger nails, but she is so strong and fights it so much, it's nearly impossible. I'm surprised she doesn't have scratches all over her face.
 
This week also marked her longest car trip yet (several hours to Atlanta to visit the MIL), her first time in a pool (itsy bitsy teeny tiny yellow polka dot bikini), her first mild sunburn on her face (#momfail), and the worst poopy diaper situation to date through either girl (up to her nipples, changing her in the trunk of the car at a rural truck stop, outfit in the trash).
 
She has her cardiologist appointment coming up to check on our heart murmur - so I will be posting about that next update. Please, please, please say some prayers for my sweet tiny little baby that everything is OK!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Mountain Day

Puff likes to point out that he thought I was pretty broken during my pregnancy with Bimmer, but that it was nothing compared to how broken I was with Healey's. (He's so sweet, isn't he???) So after listening to him complain for months about not being able to get out to the mountains, I finally found a morning that didn't look too busy (nor too hot - this SC summer has been excruciating some days) and told him it was time to make the trek to the mountains.
 
 
 
We picked Jones Gap because it's a fairly flat and easy trail, which we thought would be best for both Bimmer and me. Especially since I would be carrying Healey and was 9 months out of shape. Oh yeah, and they have a bathroom, which is always nice!
 
 
 
Healey was in heaven. Remember when I mentioned in her 7 week update that she loves to be held, carried around walking, and outside? She looked around for awhile and then zonked out in the Bjorn and slept most of the actual hike. The biggest surprise to me was how much Bimmer loved it! She always is into sticks and rocks, so she was in heaven with all those new things available. She wanted to be the "line leader" the whole time too.
 
Until she stumbled upon a snake. Loud screams ensued.
 
From both her, and Puff.
 
He screamed like a little girl.
 
I will say that I am not the best mom in the whole "go ahead and be a kid and get dirty and it's totally fine" realm, but I was prepared this trek. I purposely dressed Bimmer in older clothes and packed a spare outfit. So when Puff introduced her to throwing rocks into the creek (river? stream?) I was content to sit with Healey at a picnic table and let them have their fun!
 
 
 
My little outdoorsy girl. When we finally left, she kept telling us that she had "sooooo much fun" and we have already made a point to look at future weekends that we have free to try out another easy trail. It felt so good to get out as a family! We cannot wait to do it again soon.