Monday, December 6, 2010

Eleven Months In...

Dear Hayden

Mommy is very late writing this letter to you. I have been so caught up in enjoying every moment with you, Daddy and the girls when I get home that I have been decidedly "unplugged" from the computer and technology to increase our quality time together. It has been a great decision! I am writing this letter now because I am home sick from work with strep. You are at school. The last day and half has STUNK! Daddy has had single parent duty and I can't be around y'all. It hurts my hurt!

You continue to delight us and make us laugh constantly! You are growing so fast and will be one in just a few short weeks...

  • We went to Chicago a few weeks ago. Daddy and his friends, along with Uncle Jake and Aunt Kristi, went to the Northwestern vs. Iowa game while you and I hung out with Jessica, baby Kaden and Grandma and Grandpa Frohling. We had a blast! Grandma and Grandpa just couldn't get enough of you! All of our sweet friends love you so much. I know that you and Kaden will be best buds - you are only five months apart in age!
  • Your top FOUR teeth are in now. You now have six teeth. WOW! You are adorable and are learning that Momma's shoulder is not for biting.
  • We went and had family pictures made and you did awesome! It was hard to narrow down the choices because you are so cute!
  • You now say "Mama" when you want me and if you want Momma's milk. I love it! You say "Dada" and "Dagee" (doggy) too. You said Mama and Dada before, but now you know what it means.
  • You are still an amazing eater. You pretty much eat ANYTHING! You prefer to feed yourself over us feeding you. This means you get a LOT more baths now.
  • Speaking of baths, you are now in the "man cave" bathroom. You are too big for your duck tub and the faucet upstairs doesn't work except in shower mode. You now get to take baths in Dada's bathroom and you LOVE it! His tub is MUCH bigger and you love to splash. You would stay there for hours if we let you.
  • You also love to brush your teeth. You reach for the toothbrush and stick in your mouth. You do a great job!
  • Your favorite way of getting around now is booty scooting. You scoot all around and will army crawl if you need to. You like to have something in each hand and way it around while scooting. I love it!!
  • You love to pull up on everything, so we spend Thanksgiving break rearranging the living and dining room to make it safer for you.
  • We also put up the tree. You LOVE balls, so it was no surprise when you pulled the (plastic) Toy Story balls off of the bottom of the tree and started playing with them. The bottom foot of the tree now has no ornaments.
  • You still love to dance. You also love any music on TV.
  • We got you a Baby Signing Time DVD and you love it! The frog is your favorite.
  • I took you for your second flu shot at the new pediatrician and you now weigh 22 lbs. 8 oz. You are a healthy boy and we are grateful for that!
  • You are about to be in size four diapers.
  • You are now in 12-18 month pj's and one piece outfits. Depending on the shirt, it is either 6-12, 9-12 or 12-18. In pants, it's pretty much 6-12 or 9-12. You can wear 12-18, but they are a little long. You have a really long torso.
  • We leave for Texas on Thursday and everyone is SO excited to see you!!
  • My laptop crashed so I have lots of pictures of you I need to upload. :) I know people on Blogger and FB want to see you. :)
  • You still manage to amaze us each and every day with you delightful little laugh and happiness. You are a great baby and we are always getting compliments on how handsome you are and how sweet you are. You are our greatest blessing!

Love,

Momma

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Ten Months In...

Dear Hayden,

TEN months! Where has the time gone? You are SUCH, SUCH a joy in our lives. Your little personality is blooming! You love to smile, adore the dogs and are a bit suspicious of people you don’t know. You also never, ever stop, except when you sleep.
  • Your Grandma and Grandpa Texas came to visit you. You went everywhere with them: Falling Water, Amish country in Ohio, Sarris’ Candy, shopping, and playing. We all had such a fabulous time. They enjoyed every second with you and you ate up the attention. They also taught you to say “uh oh!” when you drop something. It’s your favorite saying right now and it makes me laugh.
  • Your top two teeth are now in. Two more top teeth are starting to come through. You have started to use my shoulder as a teether, so we are working on learning that you give Momma kisses, not bites!
  • You LOVE, LOVE to give big, huge, slobbery open mouthed kisses and hugs. I love it!
  • You really love honking your Dada’s nose. It makes you laugh. Baby tossing is your favorite activity – that and hanging upside down like a monkey.
  • You like to feed the dogs from your high chair. They run and sit pretty while you eat and you will hang food over the edge and just smile when you try to get it from you. You play a little game with them doing this.
  • You still don’t really like your bottle, but we don’t worry about it, since you are really an amazing eater!
  • You now do the FUNNIEST thing. You sit on your bottom and use your legs to scoot and spin in circles to get what you want. You will also get on all fours and rrrreeeaaaccchhh to what you want. You still don’t want to crawl. We are okay with that. There is no rush. You don’t sit still now and still get to everything you want. We will have to WATCH OUT when you get really mobile! We borrowed a walker with wheels thing from friends a few days ago and you figured it out this morning. UH OH!
  • You LOVE to dance. You will scoot to whatever toy you have out that plays music, push the buttons and then raise your hands in the air and start dancing. ADORABLE!!
  • You still get up a couple of times at night. It won’t last forever though, so it’s okay. I do enjoy the late night cuddle time.
  • You are in size three diapers.
  • Grandma and Grandpa Texas took you to Stride Rite to get you shoes. You let them know (LOUDLY) that you do NOT like shoes. At least now we know that you wear a size 3 ½ shoe, even if you don’t wear them.
  • You are in 6-12 or 9-12 month clothing, but about to be in 12-18 in pj’s and any one piece outfits.
  • You started your new school at a local church by my work two days ago. It was a hard decision, but we now get an hour to two hours more per day quality time with you. The new teachers love you so much already!
  • We are debating and looking for a place to live. We think we might buy a house and are looking.
  • You are an amazing little guy and I love you with my whole heart!
  • A memory moment: two nights ago you woke up and Dada went in to soothe you. He rubbed your back as you lay on your back when you reached your hand back, grabbed his hand and pulled it your chest to hold on to as you fell back asleep. It was so sweet to watch that moment on the video monitor!
  • Your smile when you see us and how you raise your arms up to tell us to hold you. I love it!
  • You LOVE the dogs – they always make you smile & laugh and are so good with you.

Love,
Momma

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Nine Months In...




Dear Hayden,

I cannot believe that in three short months (less than that, really) you will be ONE year old! You continue to amaze your Dada and me with everything you can do, your smile and super fun personality. We're so smitten with you and love being able to experience new things through your eyes.


  • At your nine month check up, you weighed in at 20 lbs. 11 oz. and are 28 inches tall. This puts you right smack in the 50th percentile.

  • The doctor is amazed at how strong and very happy you are!! You did cry when he poked and prodded you, which is good, since this means you show stranger danger.

  • You are not a big fan of baby food any longer. You have mastered the pincher grasp (using the thumb and forefinger) and prefer to feed yourself. You like whatever we are eating. You pretty much like everything, except for "slimy" textures (grapes, noodles, etc.). Fav foods: garlic bread, waffles, pancakes, eggs, sausage, lasagna, guacamole, roast. The doctor gave us the green light to give you anything we eat, except for raw honey (babies can't have this until they are over a year).

  • You put EVERYTHING in your mouth. When I pick you up at school, you immediately grab your daily report and start chewing on it. It makes me laugh and there are worse things to chew on than paper, so we don't worry about it.

  • You are NOT interested in drinking your bottles. The doctor said not to worry about it since you are growing and developing fine. We started giving your formula bottles during the day and you are doing great with that. It makes it easier when we are out and about since I am modest about nursing in public.

  • Both of your bottom teeth are now in. It looks so adorable when you smile! Your top two teeth should be making their appearance in the next week are so.

  • As far as moving around goes, you are now interested in rolling and scooting everywhere! This makes us happy since you had stopped doing that for awhile. You are rocking back and forth on your hands and knees, so I see crawling coming soon.

  • You can pull yourself up by yourself. Just this morning, you pulled the drawer out on the dresser and pulled yourself up. You then proceeded to pull out all of my clothes that were in that drawer. It was pretty cute!

  • You passed your hearing test! It was NOT fun since you had to be still and quiet with tube things stuck in your ears. You did NOT enjoy that, so we waited until you fell asleep and did it since it measures sound waves.

  • You LOVE music. Your favorite is country - the Zac Brown Band, track number 3 on The Foundation CD. It will calm you in an instant when you are fussy. Just yesterday, you started bobbing to the music that one of your toys was playing. You now bob to anything that sounds like music.

  • Your favorite play activity is banging on anything like a drum. I put a drum app on my iPad and you love it. You also love this ABC app where you drag letters, numbers and shapes with your forefinger. SMART boy!

  • You still get up once or twice a night. You like to sleep cuddling with us at home during naps. I don't mind the night visits because we get to cuddle and it won't last forever. You like to sleep on your side or your belly.

  • You love the fall weather and being outside. We took you to Trax Farms and you loved the pumpkins and the petting zoo animals.

  • You are still in size three diapers.

  • You prefer to be barefoot and will pull your socks off.

  • You just keep growing and growing! You're still in 6-12 or 9-12 month clothes.

  • I changed positions and offices at work recently. I am now a LOT less stressed and really enjoy going to work again. God definitely came through in turning some things around so I can leave work at work and focus on our sweet family when we are together. I do have a longer commute, so Dada and I are debating on moving closer to my work (which would also be closer for him). You would have to change schools, but I found a nice place that will love you as much as your current teachers do.

  • You are such a blessing and we love you!!

Love,


Momma


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Published!

It's official! I wrote and posted my first post for a website other than my own. Granted, my first post is not the most exciting; it's more informative. There will be more posts to come about my (our) personal TTC journey, which I truly hope will help others on that road.

My question for ya'll, as I start slowly turning my dream into a reality, is there anything about TTC you want to know about? Anything about TTC in general? About our journey? Please feel free to leave a comment or email me at luciafrohling [at] hotmail [dot] com. I really would like to hear from you!

Thank you for following me on this journey. A journey to turn my passion into a reality. A journey to make some major changes in my life. A journey to make myself the best possible wife and mom I can be. A journey to dream big!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The Next Step Forward

Faithfully God is providing ways for me to pursue my passion and make it a reality. He is showing me His ever-present love. I have said all along, and truly believe, that if what I write helps just one person, then I have fulfilled God's purpose for me.

Writing the last post was painfully hard. I had to open old wounds to show how He has made my mess into a wonderful miracle. I had several people email me privately to share their own stories because of what I wrote. The emails made me cry and think of the enormity of God and His love for each of us. These amazing stories, some of which are not yet finished, affirmed my purpose and encouraged me to continue to be honest with my struggles.

God has opened two doors for me. One is a group at our church. I reached out to the leader of a small group called Our Hope. It is a group for people who have suffered loss through miscarriage, infertility, adoption and fostering. God hasn't worked out the details yet of what will happen with this, but I am 100% confident He will. This will be a way for me to reach out to believers and be a source of encouragement and love.

The other door is with the place that helped us conceive Hayden. We chose CARE carefully and after lots of prayer. I will be writing for their patient perspective blog. I am really excited about this opportunity to minister and help other couples who are going down or are on the IF road. I should have a post up for them very soon and I will post the link.

It's scary to step out of our comfort zones. I could very easily not ever mention anything about the struggle we went through to have Hayden. However, I would not be listening to my heart. When I look at the precious eight month old playing on the floor of our living room I think, "How could I NOT share this gift with others? " God is using me and our story to help others. He is using this to help me grow and become the secure woman He intends for me to be. This is giving me a chance to help others and is helping me tenfold in the process. I am so grateful to each of you for following me on this journey. I appreciate your comments, emails, prayers and support. Thank you!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Giving Christmas Eve a Whole New Meaning

I debated writing this post. Over and over in my head I composed and then deleted it. I worried about what people may think, what reaction I would get by really opening up. Something urged me on though. My heart is set on reaching out to others. To do so, I have to be real and I have to be me and show the good and the bad. So here goes...

Besides the obvious, Christmas Eve has a whole new meaning to me now. For the past decade, it has been a day that is filled with internal sadness and regret. Now, it is a day that is filled with hope and life and happiness.

A decade ago, Christmas Eve 1999, I miscarried for the very first time. I was young and didn't really have a relationship with Christ. My engagement to my high school sweetheart had ended and the last time we saw each other, well - I don't need to go into details. I didn't know I was pregnant until it was over. It was really sad and traumatic. I ended up having to have surgery. The doctor never told me why I miscarried. It would be been helpful to know. At the time, I didn't really think of that. I was upset but also felt a sense of relief. I wasn't ready to be a Mom, however, there was also no way I could ever end a pregnancy. I had disappointed myself and my family. They loved me and showed me unending grace. I never truly got to mourn that loss until much, much later. I still have the angel teddy bear my best friend and mom got for me after surgery to remind me of the precious baby that is in Heaven.

Fast forward to Christmas Eve 2006. Chip and I had been married for over a year and were actively trying to get pregnant. I had some female issues and suffered from endometriosis and some hormone issues. We were seeing a highly recommended Dallas-based fertility doctor. We were in Iowa celebrating the Holidays and I took a ovulation test. Go time. A few weeks later, I had my very first two pink line test. We were thrilled and told everyone immediately that we were pregnant. YEA! I read Guess How Much I Love You to the baby every night while sitting in my Grandma's rocker that I had been rocked in. I bought maternity clothes and a friend gifted me some of her old baby stuff. I was thinking about the nursery. Then, there was a snow storm. I was bleeding pretty badly. We went to the emergency room. We had miscarried. I had to do blood work to make sure it wasn't because of having a negative rH (it wasn't). More tests and heartache and then having to tell everyone that we had lost our baby. A friend gave me the book Mommy, Please Don't Cry: There are No Tears in Heaven. I mourned for the loss of this baby and the one I had lost seven years before. At least now my two precious angels had each other, I could picture my Grandma Water holding and rocking them as they nestled in her lap. I felt so lost. Did I deserve to be a Mom? God carried me through this tough time. My heart healed.

We took a break and saw more doctors. I got pregnant once more and miscarried very early in the pregnancy. We went to a really good doctor. We tried IUI three times with no success. We moved to Pennsylvania. We decided to try IVF. I went back to Texas for this. I had a peace in my heart. We got pregnant and they gave me progesterone supplements so I would stay pregnant. Hayden was a sticky baby. He grew and grew. He was healthy. I was induced on December 22, 2009. We left the hospital with our precious gift on the afternoon of Christmas Eve, 2009. God turned my mess into the most precious miracle. He wrote my story and wants me to use it to help others. I was such a mess for so long. Through the grace of God and the support of amazing friends, family, medical staff and a husband that will put most men to shame, I am a Mom. I was meant to be a Mom to Hayden. He is the baby boy we are supposed to raise. He is proof that God withholds no good thing to those who believe. Hayden gave Christmas Eve a whole new meaning and he helped completely heal my heart.

My hope and my prayer in writing this is that it gives you hope. God will turn your mess into a miracle. It's not an easy road. We're human and make mistakes. Jesus died on the cross for us. He shows us grace and extends us His mercy. The love He has for us is immeasurable. He's not done with us yet and our story, is truly a love story.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Hayden Summer 2010

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Eight Months In...

Hey! See how ADORABLE I am?


What is on my head?

Dear Hayden,

Eight months?! How are you already eight months old? You are so fun, so happy, such an enormous blessing!
  • This month you were more interested in EATING the month sticker rather than wearing it, so I stuck it on top of your head. You chewed on the paper while I took pictures of you.
  • You love to smile - at pretty much anyone, as long as you are safe in my or your Daddy's arms.
  • You have started to have a bit of stranger danger and separation anxiety. It takes you a little bit to warm up to new people. You cry big, HUGE alligator tears to show us how upset you are.
  • One of your bottom teeth finally broke through when your Grandma Donna (or KK, as Nathan calls her) was here to visit. Your other front bottom tooth is on it's way. BONUS: no biting the Momma!
  • You make the FUNNIEST faces and they just crack me up. I think you may be the type of kid that likes to make people laugh. I adore that!
  • On a sad note, you had your first post tubes ear infection and the stuff that came out of your ear was gross!! You also had an eye infection at the same time (left ear and left eye). On the up side, KK was here to visit so you got to rest and cuddle with her. You LOVED the attention.
  • KK loved visiting and loving on you. You adore your grandparents and family. They think you are pretty awesome too!
  • You had your hearing test two days after you got diagnosed with the ear infection. You didn't pass the left side, so we are going back September 10th. You also have stopped being interested in tummy time or rolling. The ENT thinks it may be due to have a unilateral (one side) ear infection messing with your equilibrium. We'll re-evaluate after your next hearing test. Whatever it is, we will figure it out. Who know? Maybe you just prefer to sit and stand and are done with that baby rolling stuff. HA!
  • You still love to sleep on your belly. You take really good naps a home cuddling with us. At school, I think you hate to miss anything, so you don't nap as well there unless you are in the swing. You DID sleep in your crib until the ear infection. BLAH!
  • You are now in 6-12 month or 9-12 month clothes. The 6-9 month clothes are too snug on that milk belly of yours. :)
  • You are still in size three diapers.
  • You love to go barefoot so you can grab your toes. In your carseat, you will kick one leg while holding onto the toes of the other.
  • Your newest favorite thing to do is to feed yourself puffs! You love to put them in your mouth and are really good at doing it by yourself. What a big boy you are!
  • You LOVE the dogs. You will screech at any dog to tell them hi. You are quite the talker. Hmm...I wonder where you get that from? HA!
  • I really miss you when I am at work. I have been praying for a way to work from home that will enable you to go to school a couple of days a week and we can have more time together. I enjoy my job, but my heart hurts and I feel like I am missing out. Right now, we are all where we need to be. I pray that God will have some things in store to change some of that.
  • You are the light of our lives and we just adore you. You are the best parts of Daddy and I both and we enjoy being a family of three (plus two dogs).

Love,

Momma

Saturday, August 21, 2010

TTC: A Dream

I 100% love being a wife and mommy. It's not always easy or perfect. It is full of surprises and tough decisions. It is the desire of my heart that God has blessed me with.

I have been at the very rock bottom in regards to TTC (trying to conceive). It is God alone that carried me through this with the peace He placed in my heart, the people who are in my life, and the resources that I was directed to. Without these, I would not have the precious gift that is Hayden. There is so much more to my story and what I experienced than I could possibly conquer in one post or even ten posts. As anyone who has traveled the TTC road can attest, it is full of peaks, valleys, tough decisions and soul searching.

Right now I am TTC my dream and make it into a reality. I have taken the first step in verbalizing it and letting other people know. The support I have been given is awe inspiring and overwhelming in the best possible way. It serves as affirmation that this is how God wants me to serve Him. I am starting to take the steps to turn a dream into a reality and figuring out what that will look like. I have reached out to a couple of websites that I read and I got a response from one. I will know more in the next couple of weeks, but it truly looks promising and it is exactly the place where I want to start reaching out, as this place has a VERY special place in my heart. Once everything has been set up and confirmed, then I can say where. I think those that where there for and with me through my own personal TTC journey will feel a connection.

I want to put it out there that if any of you (if it is you or someone you know) are conquering TTC and want a resource, a shoulder, a voice from someone that has been there, please know I am here. I promise that there is no judgement. My mission is to offer hope and encouragement and, if asked, information about my experience. My heart aches for you and I know that God isn't finished writing your story. As a sweet friend told me, God has a way of turning our messes into miracles that serve to glorify Him. You can always email me at luciafrohling [at] hotmail [dot] com

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

What If? Now What? What's Next?

What if I could follow my passion and inspire and help other women? What do I mean? I have a special place in my heart for women who have gone through, or are currently in the midst of, infertility. I've been there - I'm still there. It's a weird place to be - a crazy place to be. It's full of uncertainty, doubt, insecurity and questions. It's a place where there needs to be a safe haven. A place to ask the tough questions, to share information, to be a community and to encourage, support and lift up one another. A place to be honest and open with no judgement. A place to hear that what you're going through is normal and here - let me offer you hope and let me be your rock and tell you about the other side. My dream is to start a blog / website and/or write a column about all of this and what's below. It's in the works. I am taking teh first teeny step to getting there.

What If? You're in the midst of infertility. You don't know what to do. You want to hear what others have done. You need information, support and a shoulder to cry on when there is only one single pink line.

Now What? You're pregnant - at last, finally. BUT... you feel guilt about being pregnant because you have friends who are still TTC (trying to conceive). You want to enjoy each moment. It's taken you so long to get here and you need a different type of support.

What's Next? The bundle of joy is here. Maybe you're ecstatic. Maybe you're overwhelmed. Maybe your experiencing baby blues or postpartum depression and feel guilt about that. After so long, there was this fantasy of what having a baby would be like. The snuggles, love, smell is amazing. The poop, sleeplessness, adjustment is hard. That pesky guilt keeps coming back because you have a baby, shouldn't you been shouting from the rooftops? How do you adjust? Do you want another one? Are you scared? What IF there isn't another one????

My dream is to help facilitate and offer information in a kind manner for those who need a safe place to turn to. I want to minister in a way that will help and support believers and non-believers alike. I want a place where women can turn for biblical support coupled with research and information, along with stories of women just like them.

Now what? What's next? I have to go boldly forward and formulate a plan. I can do this. I want to do this. This is my passion. I have great motivation in the seven and a half month old little guy with the beautiful blue eyes who came after years of struggle and the wonderful man who is his Daddy and my biggest cheerleader.

To do this - I need you. Please help me to help other women. Offer your advice, guidance, encouragement and, if you've been in the IF, I would love for you to be a part!

Email me at luciafrohling [at] hotmail [dot] com

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Hayden Summer 2010

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Seven Months In...




Dear Hayden,


Seven months – you are now OVER a half of a year old and it just keeps getting better and better!! We love seeing you become your own little person!


  • You have such a great personality! You are very easy going and, normally, only fuss when you are tired or hungry. Your smile lights up your whole face and we just adore your gummy grin!

  • You are teething - your bottom two teeth are about to come in. Remember - don't bite the momma!

  • You really love to eat! You are NOT a fan of spinach, but will eat just about everything else. Now that you are teething, you really like to chew on pieces of cold fruit.

  • You got tubes on July 13th and THAT was hard on Daddy and me. You did great! You didn't even wake up grumpy! The ENT said that your ears were really bad (red and pus-filled). You had stopped rolling over because the fluid in your ears would make you dizzy when you rolled over. The afternoon of your surgery, you started rolling over again and haven't stopped! We are so proud of you! You also had a 20 decibel improvement in your hearing (difference between a whisper and a normal voice).

  • Due to all of the infections and such, you would wind up in bed with Daddy and me. Our friends, the Reed's, came to visit and this helped (okay - made us - which was good) to get you back to sleeping in your crib. You like to sleep one of two ways - on your belly with your bum in the air or on your back with a blanket by your face. We let you sleep on your belly with the SIDS monitor on here and you sleep on your back with the blanket at school. Your teachers are so proud of you for starting to take your naps in your crib too! I do still enjoy our midnight feedings - I like the extra cuddle time. Daddy enjoys his Daddy-son time in the morning with you while I get some extra sleep. It's a good balance for all of us!

  • Speaking of the Reed's - we had a FABULOUS time with them. You loved playing with the boys. You want to be big like them!

  • You are still in size three diapers and, this month, we caught your poop face on camera. I know you will love me when I show that to your prom date!

  • You are still (just barely) in 6-9 month clothes. I think you will be in 9-12 month clothes soon.

  • I think you still wear size three shoes. You go barefoot most of the time, so I'm not really sure.

  • You now weigh 20 lbs. 4 oz. and are a solid, perfect little guy!

  • You started saying "Dada!" Your Daddy loves it! You still say Mama when you want me (or maybe when you want milk).

  • You talk a LOT - we have very fun conversations!!

  • You love to bang and make noise. This means we now have a lot of loud toys in our house -and I love it! Daddy even got you your own baby laptop since you like banging on his so much!

  • You love anything with wheels. You are SO boy!

  • This month, you started clapping. You and I were watching "Make It or Break It" on ABC Family and there was a scene where the audicence was clapping and you just joined in. You still do it and now, when you eat, you will clap or do the sign for more when you want more to eat.

  • At church, you started in the nursery and are doing awesome! YEA! They love you as much as your teachers at school do.

  • You are sitting up so awesome and are starting to go on all fours. I think you will start crawling in the next month or so. Now, you just roll to get where you need to go. You do this more at school than at home because you like to cuddle a lot at home. And I will take all the cuddles you have to give!

  • You LOVE to stand up! You can stand for a few seconds on your own. Who knows - maybe you will skip crawling and go straight to walking?

  • You REALLY like to drink out of a water bottle. I did it once to see what you would do. You prefer a water bottle over a sippy cup and are pretty good about swallowing most of the water. You like to chew on the spout of your sippy cup.

  • You are such a joy in our lives and we love you!

    Love, Momma

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Six Months In...



Dear Hayden,
Six months – you are now half a year old and boy, oh boy, what a wonderful half a year it has been! I look forward to even more fun as we watch you grow and learn.


  • You are SUCH a great eater! You will eat just about anything. Sometimes you make a “what is this?” face – but you still eat it. We tried a mesh feeder with a strawberry in it the other night and you really loved it (the taste and the sticky mess you made). The dogs also love your baby food. I let them lick out the container after you are done and Addison especially loves it!

  • This has been the month of sick and over-worried momma! You got thrush after the antibiotics then you developed a sinus infection which was followed by a case of croup. You are now on the mend, thank goodness! You were a trooper through it all and didn't have to miss school. It was harder on me than you I think. I wanted to cuddle with you on the couch and I had to work. It was a rough month on me and I have had a huge case of mommy guilt. I know you are well taken care of and loved at school, it’s just a thing that mommy’s have.

  • You are still not completely sleeping through the night. You wake up about twice a night to eat. We tried having Daddy get up with you, thinking you were just needing to cuddle. NOPE! You cried and wailed and when I fed you, you ate and slept. This time rushes by so fast, so I am okay with having night duty for a few more months.  If you want to start sleeping through the night now though, that would be awesome! HA!

  • You did so good getting your six month vaccines! You cried more when the doctor was poking and prodding you than when the nurse gave you shots. In fact, you smiled at her through your tears when she was done. You do love the ladies!

  • You are now 18 pounds and 26.5 inches tall with a 44 cm head circumference. This puts you solidly in the 50-60 %tile. The pediatrician told us you are again perfectly on track with your development.

  • You are still in size three diapers. You also grunt when you #2 and do a little stare into space.

  • You are in 6-9 month clothes.

  • You are now in size 3 shoes (6-12 months Robeez). You don’t like to wear shoes though. You LOVE those toes of yours!

  • You have started doing this little growl, which is so cute! You can now put them in your mouth.

  • When you get fussy, you say “mamamamamama.” Your Daddy wishes you would say “dadadadadadada” – I think that will come very soon, along with “Addie, no!”

  • Those dogs of ours! You LOVE them and are now starting to reach towards them and grab their ears. They are very patient and love you so much! They will love you even more when they realize that you will start dropping food on the floor very soon.

  • We had to “upgrade” you from the baby tub to a duck inflatable one, because you tried to crawl out of the baby tub by pushing your feet on the end. You LOVE the duck tub (especially when we make it quack) – in fact – you laugh and smile any time you see a picture of a duck or a dog. Your Daddy’s duck voice always brings a smile to your face.

  • You LOVE your jumperoo so much! You love to kick your legs and jump and grab our noses. The other day, you grabbed my face and planted an open mouth kiss on me. I loved it!

  • You love to kick your legs to the beat of songs. At church, you were kicking your legs so much when the worship music played. You especially love the upbeat songs. You do this in the car while holding your toes. It’s so adorable!

  • You can now sit up and go from sitting to tummy all by yourself! Sometimes you forget to hold yourself up and tip over, but you normally don’t fuss, even when you face plant. You’re all boy!

  • You now sit in the shopping cart – and you really enjoy it! You like when people smile and say how sweet you are. We always get compliments about what a good baby you are.

  • Last night you held yourself up while STANDING holding onto the ottoman and your music table. This morning you tried it holding onto your big boy car seat box.

  • You are now in your big boy convertible car seat (facing backwards, of course). You like being up higher and it’s easier on my arms because you are a solid little guy!

  • We bought you a little blow up pool and put you in it in your swim gear (sunscreen, hat, shirt, Little Swimmers diaper and swim trunks) and with a bunch of toys and me. Daddy took pictures. You really liked it – especially when we let you play in it naked.

  • You like to SKYPE and are getting into “talking” now. And also banging on the keyboard.

  • You love electronics – well, you love trying to eat them – the remote, my phone, whatever you’re not supposed to eat...

  • We did get a new video camera – our accidental damage warranty covered it. BUT they couldn’t get your baptism video off of it, which made me a little sad...

  • Our friends, Reed's, are coming to visit in a couple of weeks. YEA! We will have a lot of fun.

  • Daddy really enjoyed his first Father’s Day. You made him a card shaped like a tie at school. We bought him some jeans and we all relaxed and enjoyed each other. He loves being your Daddy and looks forward to your Daddy/Son time with him each morning (while Momma sleeps a little longer – since you get up about 30 minutes before my alarm).
    Love,
    Momma

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Hayden Iowa Trip - May 2010

Click here to view these pictures larger

Five Months In...

Why yes, I am THIS loved and this cute!
Grandma Judy is holding me at the Ames Farmer's Market.


Dear Hayden,
How has it been five months already? Where has the time gone? I treasure every precious moment with you. You are our amazing little man!

  • We started you on food and, after a little bit of WHAT IS THIS?, you now LOVE it! You are a HUGE fan of fruits and sweet veggies (sweet potatoes and butternut squash). You will tolerate the other vegetables and I think you will grow to like them more. You DO NOT enjoy plain rice cereal – who could blame you – it tastes like wet cardboard! You love to play with this little carousel thing that sticks to your highchair and you like to play with your food and spoon. You cause quite a mess and I just sit back, laugh and take pictures.
  • You came down with ANOTHER ear infection. This time it was in both ears. We had to take you to the urgent care place on a Saturday night. Mom’s intuition (with a healthy dose of non-stop fussing for 20 minutes from you while you Daddy was walking the girls) – I just knew you had one when we laid you on the play mat and your little face scrunched up. The people at urgent care gave me a paper talking about “fussy babies” – this made me laugh since that is so NOT you! I made an appointment with a pediatric ENT to discuss our next steps. The antibiotics gave you and me both thrush this time. So, you are now on Nystatin (you just finished your amoxicillin). I hate that you are on medicine, but, luckily, you are still healthy and happy.
  • You are still not completely sleeping through the night, but I think once we get these ear infections to go away, you will be.
  • While at urgent care, they weighed you and...17 lbs. 5 oz. of perfect baby! You are a healthy little man who loves to nurse.
  • You are now solidly in size three diapers.
  • You are in between 3-6 and 6-9 month clothes. It depends on the brand...
  • You are still in size 2 shoes (or 0-6 month Robeez since we normally put you in those for the sole purpose of keeping your socks on since you like to kick those off now - ha!).
  • You love to laugh! It gets me every time.
  • You love art! You are really good at holding the crayons and markers. Your little grip is so strong!
  • You now recognize me when I pick you up from school – you give me a huge grin and start fussing if I don’t immediately come over and play with you.
  • You still love to put EVERYTHING into your mouth. On Mother’s Day weekend, we had you in your Bumbo in the flower bed while we were planting flowers. You grabbed a HUGE glob of soil and stuffed it in your mouth. The look on your face was priceless! We also put your little feet in the dirt and you really liked that! For the first time, you needed a bath because you were dirty.
  • For the first time last night, you cried because I took away a toy from you. You were playing with a Wendy’s spoon in your Bumbo and I took it out of your hand so I could pick you up. You looked up at me and gave a little cry that totally sounded like, “Hey, Momma! I was playing with that!”
  • OH BOY! We went to Iowa this weekend and you are one loved little boy!! Both sets of your grandparents (and your great-grandparents) are over the moon about you. Seeing your Grandpa Skip get on the floor to “exercise” with you and the look of love that you could literally feel from Grandma Judy just made my heart so happy. All of our Iowa friends, cousins, aunts, uncles...they all just love you! You were SO great on the airplane and were awesome about letting anyone hold you. Thank you for being so amazing!!
  • You went to Tony & Michelle’s wedding (on your five month birthday) and did awesome! I did have to leave the church during the ceremony, as it was your dinner time and the church was built in the 1800’s so it had no a/c. Nursing you under a blanket with 250 strangers with no A/C would have been a disaster, so we went to the car, cranked up the A/C while you ate. Herky, the Hawkeye mascot, was at the reception and you had your picture taken with him. Of course, I changed you into an Iowa outfit as soon as I saw him so you would be in the appropriate gear for the photo op! Grandma Judy, Aunt Kristi and Megan came to get you at 7:30 from the reception so Daddy & I could enjoy adult time while you were loved on. We got home about 11. Aunt Kristi is a very good driver and made sure you got home safely. This was the first time you were in a car without your Daddy or me.
  • On Sunday, you got baptized at the same church your Daddy and Uncle Jake grew up in. Our Iowa family and friends were there and Mommy teared up. Uncle Jake and Aunt Kristi are your godparents. This means they will make sure we raise you to be a man who loves Jesus and will take care of you should anything ever happen to us. Pastor Heidi said you did awesome – not one single tear – even with having water poured over your head, oil rubbed on your forehead, salt put on your lips and being walked around the church by Pastor. YEA!
  • After your baptism, Grandma and Grandpa Frohling had a HUGE catered lunch by Hickory Park (Daddy’s favorite) for us at their house. Over 60 people came to see you and love on you – you ate it all up!
  • Now, when I give you a bath, you like to sit up and face plant into the water as you try to eat your rubber ducky. It’s pretty funny, but we have to keep a super duper close eye on you!
  • We signed you up for “swim” lessons at the local Y starting in July. I can’t wait – we ordered you little sun hats to protect your noggin. I vote for Daddy to get in the water with you while Mommy video tapes.
  • Speaking of video tapes, I accidentally washed ours with a load of your clothes. It was in the bag with your laundry from our trip and I just dumped it in the wash without going through it. OOPS!! I pray that our accidental damage warranty covers it. Most of all, I hope we can get the Electronic Big Box Store to help us get your baptism video off of it...
  • You love to watch and laugh at the dogs! It’s pretty cute.
  • You are about to be out of your infant carrier, I think. We’ll ask the doc at your six month appointment about it.
  • You are this close to sitting up unsupported. You also can scoot yourself across a blanket like a little inchworm. Someone’s about to be mobile, I think! UH OH!
  • Your Daddy and I love you! I waited so long to be a Mommy and to celebrate Mother’s Day this year – well, let’s just say it was perfect! Daddy and you are the best gifts I could ever ask for and I love you both with all my heart!

Love,
Momma

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Not So Secretly...

I walk into Hayden's classroom and hear the normal sounds of babies laughing and one or two crying. I go into the kitchen area and gather the car seat and extra bottle from the fridge. I walk back in and one of Hayden's teachers gives me a look of "help." I know that look. The look that says, "This child is fussy and I don't know what to do to help him - nothing is working." She tells me as I am walking towards my baby that he wouldn't take his last bottle and has been very un-Hayden-like for the last half hour. So much so that they took his temperature (he didn't have one).

I walk over to the swing where my sweet boy is fussing. His face is like mine when I cry - splotchy and red. Big crocodile tears slide down his cheeks. As I lift him out of the swing, I speak soft words of comfort. The crying stops. He looks up at me with those big, blue eyes and then...that special just-for-momma grin appears. He laughs as I snuggle and blow raspberries on his neck. We walk to the crib area and sit in the rocking chair. He nurses and, as he eats, he occasionally pulls away to look up at me - milk running out of the side of his mouth because he is smiling.

Hayden just needed and wanted his momma. And this. It makes me really happy. He loves his momma and wants me to comfort him - that is part of what makes being a momma so great.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Four Months In...

Momma - Seriously, you just took my picture at the doctor's office AFTER I got shots. This is the best smile you're going to get right now...(look closely at his right hand - hmmm...put that finger down young man)

Dear Hayden,

I am ready for time to stand still! You need to QUIT growing already - okay?!

  • We went to Texas this month for Aaron and Alicia's wedding. Our Iowa friends got to meet you for the first time and MAN! You are a charmer and had everyone loving on you (even our friends who say they aren't baby people were in love with you).
  • You are still such a snuggle bug! I love that you are a snuggler and I enjoy every moment of it. This means that dinner is normally pot luck and the house work and laundry pile up. Luckily, your Daddy and I are on the same page and we know the work stuff will always be there - you just keep insisting on growing...
  • You are now 16 pounds and 25 inches long with a head circumference of 43 centimeters. You are in the 75th percentile and 100% perfect and healthy! The doctor even said what a perfectly awesome baby you are.
  • The doctor said we could start you on food - we're going to try it this weekend and see how it goes. The pictures should be pretty funny I think since you are already eyeballing our food and tried to take a head dive into your Daddy's pasta the other night.
  • You are pretty much in size 3 diapers - I am using up the remaining size 2 diapers and it is a tight squeeze. Thank goodness for elastic!
  • You are in 3-6 month onesies and pants. I think you will be out of the 3-6 shirts soon...they are starting to get a bit snug.
  • You are still in size 2 shoes (or 0-6 month Robeez since we normally put you in those for the sole purpose of keeping your socks on since you like to kick those off now - ha!).
  • You had your SECOND ear infection - this time in your left ear (boo) - this made me sad, but you were fine. You were even nice enough to share it with me and I had a double ear infection. This happened two days before we left for Texas, thank goodness the antibiotics worked fast. Both of us did great on the flight (and Daddy came too which made it MUCH easier).
  • You are SUCH a happy, smiling, laughing baby. Your gummy grins melts my heart. You have this special smile and laugh that you reserve for your Daddy and me only. I try to capture it on camera, but you refuse. I love that smile and laugh!
  • You LOVE when we blow raspberries on your tummy and nom on your thighs and neck. I have to be careful though since you grab my hair when I do that. You laugh so loud!
  • You also LOVE when we lift you over our head and do "Super Baby."
  • You like to eat the feet of the monkeys on your bouncer and exercise mat. You have a lion that hangs from your car seat handle that you also like to chew on. Actually, you like to chew and suck on EVERYTHING! The doctor said you're not teething yet - it's just what you like to do.
  • You do art at school - you were not a fan of finger painting at first, now you like it - as long as you can do it ALL BY YOURSELF. If your teachers try to help you, you get very upset. It's pretty precious. You like the construction paper art too - mainly because you like to try and eat the paper. Your teachers are also pretty in love with you. I love that!
  • You played in an exersaucer for the first time on April 1st at Grandma and Grandpa Texas' house. You weren't so sure about it. We have a jumperoo at home that you played in for the first time on April 10th (we put a yoga mat under your feet) - you are starting to really like it! You lift up your legs or move on one leg like a flamingo and think you are so BIG!
  • You like to be in the mix - you enjoy sitting in your bumbo and are a rock star at rolling from your front to your back and from your back to your side!
  • You do NOT like to be ignored - you want us to play with you or talk to you. How can we resist? You are adorable!
  • Your favorite activity is playing on your exercise mat. So much so that you have gotten up at 5:30 the last two mornings to play on it with your Daddy and watch ESPN. It's pretty cute!
  • You always wake up in the BEST mood - which I love. You coo and laugh and smile. It's so funny when you smile at us with your BIG grin with your paci in your mouth or you will pop out your paci to smile at us. If you are not ready to sleep yet, you do this. Lately, you have been eating a TON so I think you are ready for food.
  • You would rather be naked! You love when we get home from school and I take your pants off and you just kick and kick and kick like a little frog. You love diaper changes - well the part where you are naked.
  • Last night you really loved the bath and splashed in it for the first time! You loved making a big watery mess!! We want to join somewhere with a pool and try that out to see what you think.
  • You sat in the grass for the first time last night with your buddy Owen. You weren't quite sure about it...it could be that you were tired. Soon enough you will be digging in the dirt and eating it.
  • You are VERY loved! We are going to Iowa next month for Tony & Michelle's wedding and for your christening. I don't think you will be sat down once while we are there. Save your early mornings for Iowa - your Grandpa is an early bird and will love being up with you. I bet he will tell you lots of stories. Grandma and Grandpa Frohling can't wait to see you in person - they already can't get enough of you on Skype!
  • We took you to church for the first time in Pennsylvania. We went to the six o'clock service on Saturday night and that was much better. You got hungry during the service, but our church has a lounge area with a TV to watch the service, which was nice - and we met a nice Mommy who could see how in love with you I am.
  • Your Daddy and I know that you are destined for great things and are so proud of you already. We will always support and love you!

Love,

Momma

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Balancing Act

This smile - it melts my heart. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.


Being a WOHM is definitely a balancing act - and one that I don't feel very competent at. First off, I do have to say that my Work is being amazing and accommodating. They are allowing me to work through my lunch so I can leave earlier to pick up my lil' man from daycare and get home before his bedtime of 7:30 p.m. I can telecommute from home when he is sick. I am able to pump whenever I need to in the privacy of my office. Chip is definitely doing his part - he gets Hayden's bottles ready, helps with morning duty, encourages me to have me time and has pretty much taken over laundry and dinner duty so I can bond with Hayden (especially since Hayden cluster feeds at night). Hayden's school is amazing - his teachers really seem to love him (and I am NOT above sucking up - I mean, buying his teacher's little gifts to say how much I appreciate them) and I cherish the little notes they write on his daily reports.

STILL - I am struggling with something that I think every Mom (SAHM, WAHM, WOHM) struggles with - guilt. I feel guilt for working (and enjoying the feeling of accomplishment at work), guilt for taking time for me because that is time away from my family, guilt for Hayden getting sick due to the fact he is in daycare, guilt for feeling overwhelmed, guilt for not enough family time or being able to go watch Chip's games, guilt, guilt, guilt. Guilt for just about everything. The guilt then leads to stress. I tend to put myself down when I am stressed - to think I am "not enough." The situation that I am in now lends itself to a lot of that thinking - which is detrimental to my self esteem to say the least. I also tend to not ask for help - to try to do it all or to do too much. God is certainly using being a WOHM to sharpen me in that aspect. Simply put - I can't do it all. I HAVE to have help and I am luckier than a lot of women. We have a biweekly cleaning lady who helps with the laundry. I have a supportive Workplace. I have friends who are also WOHMs who encourage me with the fact that they somehow manage to do it all - with grace and a sufficiency that I lack. I have other friends who are SAHMs who don't judge me for working and are supportive. And yet...still the guilt remains.

I've been back at work for about a month. I know it will get easier. I am just struggling with so much right now. There is a balance - I just have to find the right one for our family and let go of my insecurities and guilt. I am going to a Beth Moore simulcast on that very topic Saturday - I think it will fill me up and help me. I am praying it will.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Oh Dear Hayden!

Dear sweet son,

what have you done?

You do not want to nurse -

Is this some kind of daycare curse?

You do not like my left side - could I ask you why?

Luckily, you only refused me once, but that one time made me cry.

You were a bit fussy and only wanted your Daddy.

Daddy read books to you to calm you down.

You like the voices he uses and when acts like a silly clown.

You must have known that Mommy needed some love from Daddy's mini-me,

so you decided to get up four times last night to feed.

Little one, I want you to know that four a.m. is not wake up time.

I rocked you to sleep, laid you in your monkey and then "RISE & SHINE!"

Out went the paci from your mouth and open went your eyes.

You looked up at me and smiled, cooed and help up your arms- you are wise!

I am not immune to your charms.

I picked you up, sang to you and laid in the guest bed with you in my arms.

You settled your sweet head on my chest, looked up at me with that gummy grin

and then...

We slept.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Three Months In...




Dear Hayden,

Oh my sweet boy - has it really been three months? Where did the time go? A lot has been going on this month.


  • Your Aunt Kristi & Uncle Jake were here to celebrate your three month birthday - that is them holding you in the picture. Man - are they in love with you! It makes my heart so happy to see how much they love you - you ate up all of the attention they gave you! You would have talks with Uncle Jake and snuggle up and fall asleep on Aunt Kristi. You smiled, cooed and laughed. I had to work Monday and they loved watching you! Your Daddy and I think you are pretty awesome and it makes me smile to see that other people think so too (not that we had any doubt - you are a charmer!).

  • I went back to work a week before you turned three months (on March 15th) and man - Mama has been struggling! Your teachers love you and I know it is good for you to be at school - it just hurts my heart to drive away after I drop you off. The best part of my day (other than when your Daddy is home and we can have family time) is walking in the school door to pick you up. You seem to sense that I need Hayden time and are such a snuggle bug. Your teachers love to snuggle with you!

  • At work, I have been pumping. It's going pretty good. I enjoy having the break in my day to just sit back and think about you.

  • You wear 3-6 months onesies and pants. You seem to have a longer torso than legs so you were in 0-3 pants until this week.

  • You are on the cusp of being in size three diapers.

  • You wear size 2 shoes.

  • You wear Baby Dry diapers at night. Last night, you leaked through when I got up to feed you at 4:30 (your Daddy had changed you at 2) and let's just say that we both needed new pj's (luckily they were just wet).

  • We have had awesome weather lately and have gone to the park TWICE! You love it (and normally fall asleep).

  • You are liking your car seat more. You are big enough now that we took out the headrest thing. That was the problem - you couldn't turn your head to look around and you wanted too!

  • You are now facing out in the front carrier and are just about ready for your Bumbo. You love to turn your head and look around. You are a curious little monkey.

  • You love your bouncy seat in the bathroom - it plays music and lights up. You sit in it and talk to me when I get ready in the morning. This was Daddy's idea and it's a good one. You also sit in it when I take a shower so that the steam will keep you nice and NOT congested.

  • You have been sleeping SO GOOD in the monkey in your crib.

  • You have been getting up only once at night to eat. The last week you've been going through a growth spurt, so it's been several times. I don't mind though, it's our special time and I get to hold and love on you. I love being able to nurse you and sit in the rocking chair and hold you. I've been so tired from work, that I normally fall asleep with you on my chest in the middle of the night. I absolutely love that because soon you will be too big for that.

  • You LOVE your hands, your paci and anything you can get in your mouth - the little monkey that hangs on your downstairs bouncy seat and the frog that hangs on your carseat.

  • I got you a new carseat toy that you love!

  • You can ROLL OVER from your front to your back. I am SO PROUD!

  • You love to lay on your back or tummy and just wiggle around. Your little feet kick out like a frog that's swimming - I think you will be an earlier crawler, which means we will be REALLY busy then!

  • You love to stick out your tongue and you can smack your lips. Pretty stinkin' cute!

  • You now recognize where your food comes from and get so excited when I lay you sideways and....

  • You smile and laugh so much - you are a VERY happy baby and we are beyond blessed! My heart just leaps with joy when I see your face and man, oh man, do we love you. Weekends are pretty precious - we really enjoy our family time!

Time is going by so fast and it's hard to imagine life without you. You have made our lives so full and we LOVE you!



Love,


Mama

Monday, March 8, 2010

Achy Breaky Heart

Would you want to be away from this precious face?


That catchy song by Miley Cyrus' dad is also the current state of my heart in regards to going back to work, or more specifically, leaving Hayden at daycare. I never thought I would feel this way when I was pregnant. I didn't fully understand how much more I would love my husband and want to provide a peaceful home for him and how a piece of my heart would be forever attached to our sweet son.

I know there are positives and negatives to staying at home and working outside the home. I know that Hayden will be fine. We very carefully chose a school that we feel will provide the best care and curriculum for him. It isn't far from my work and it is super secure and safe (they scan your fingerprint - that is how you are able to get through the second set of doors and into the center). He will learn baby sign language, do baby yoga - and as he gets older - learn French and Spanish. I know he will learn important social skills and will be on a better schedule (hey - he may even sleep in his crib at home eventually). I know it will be good for me to have more adult interaction and not be so isolated. His immune system will get built up and he won't be sick as often when he is in elementary school. We will have better financial stability and be able to pay off more bills (specifically - Hayden's conception), put money away for Hayden's college, save for another baby (which we plan to have in a couple of years) and build up our savings.

And yet...

I had a breakdown Friday and sobbed in the shower for thirty minutes. I threw up last night because my stomach is in knots about going back to work. I'm scared. I know Hayden will be fine - he won't love me any less and he will be excited to see me when I pick him up. It will be better on him to be around people other than just Chip and myself. Chip and I talked and, if I honestly cannot do it, I can stay home. My work is being awesome about all of this - I have been very honest with them and they are supportive. I can be off and telecommute from home when Hayden is sick. I got a promotion that will give me more flexibility in hours. Our insurance for our entire family is paid for by work (no premium for us - which is so rare) and it's great insurance. They match my 401(k). We get bonuses and it's a good work environment. It is still work though and the time I am there is time I am away from Hayden.

And yet...

The root of this is being away from Hayden and also be scared of NOT being able to do it all. I have a handle on things now. I can take care of the house (granted - we still have our housekeeper come every other week since it wouldn't be fair to let her go until we knew for sure if I was going back to work), the laundry (which is my Achilles heel), cooking, seeing friends, and, most importantly, being a good wife and mom. Chip still has the same commute (45 - 1 hour each way) so that means I will be responsible for taking Hayden to school, picking him up, getting dinner ready, taking care of the girls and Hayden until Chip gets home. It is the nature of Chip's job and I know that.

Since I am breastfeeding and Hayden isn't sleeping through the night yet, the night responsibilities are still mine when I am working. I don't function very well on little sleep - I tend to get upset easier. But hey - that's what coffee is for right? I know we could give Hayden formula, but truly, I feel really strongly about giving him breast milk exclusively as long as possible. Especially if I'm working, I feel that is the least I can do. The downside to that decision is that all of the milk I pump will be for school so Chip won't be able to feed him until I figure that out (I am thinking he can feed on weekends and some nights once I figure out how much milk I'll need for Hayden - right now, I'm freezing everything I pump to make sure we have enough).

To be honest - I am just afraid that I won't be able to be a good wife and mom if I am working - that I will fail Chip and Hayden. I put a lot of pressure on myself - being a good wife and mom is something that means more to me than any amount of money. It is the way I am wired - I am not a high powered career driven type person - to me, family is everything. Family and friends really mean a lot now that we are so far from a lot of them (not all - our PA friends are great!). I am afraid of missing the firsts. I know the first time Hayden does whatever it is will be the first time for us, but still...

I'm afraid of having to go on anti-anxiety medicine again. When we moved here, I had to go on them because I couldn't handle Chip being away and having to deal with the girls, packing, selling the house and all of that. I went off of them a few months after we moved here. I know I am stronger than I give myself credit for, but I'm still scared. My friends who work and are mommies - they are these incredible women who CAN do it all and they do an AMAZING job! I don't know how they do it! Maybe I can just clone them?

I can do this - I know I can. I just need a LOT of encouragement right now. God will give me the strength to do this. He gives me the strength to get through each day. Friends, expect some teary phone calls next week!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep


On Wednesday, I laid Hayden down in the pack and play for his mid morning nap. I put his sweet head down on Spot, the puppy Grandma and Grandpa Frohling sent him for Valentine's Day and kissed him.
When I walked by a short time later to check on him, I found him cuddling Spot. In his sleep, Hayden had maneuvered himself from laying on Spot to holding Spot. It was the sweetest sight to see him loving on his puppy in his sleep. Hayden was also going to town on his paci, so maybe he was dreaming of eating?

Friday, February 26, 2010

Two Months In...

You on February 22, 2010

Dear Hayden,

Four days ago you turned two months old! So much has happened in the last month and each day you bring more and more joy to our lives!

  • You had your two month appointment yesterday and handled the shots so well! Much better than Mama did. Of course, the doctor said you are perfect!
  • You hated when the doctor looked at your ears!
  • You are now 24 inches long.
  • You now weigh 13 pounds and 11 ounces.
  • Your head circumference is 41 centimeters.
  • You are in the 50-75th percentile for your weight and length combined and head size. Just your weight at your age puts you in the 90-95th percentile.
  • You had your first walk outside the day after you turned one month old and it put you fast asleep.
  • You like to ride in the front carrier when we go to the store. This helps me have my hands free and I can cuddle with you while I get my chores done.
  • You now wear size 1-2 diapers.
  • You are in size 3-6 month onesies and shirts (even some 6 - 12 month ones) and wear size 0-3 month pants.
  • You held a rattle for the first time by yourself when you were seven weeks old!
  • You grin and coo at us all the time and it absolutely melts my heart.
  • You are an expert Skyper!
  • You are already a model - our cousins put you on their website.
  • You had your first ear infection - a slight one in your right ear - as a result of being so congested. This made Mama and Daddy very sad!
  • You laughed out loud for the first time when you were eight weeks old and do it all the time now. You like mornings best and when Daddy gets home- you smile and play so much then!
  • You'v lost most of your baby hair - except at the back, so you kind of have a "skullet." Your crazy hair just keeps growing.
  • You are not a huge fan of your car seat - but you are getting better at being in it.
  • You had your first airplane rides last week! We went to Texas to visit friends and family. Daddy had to stay home and work and BOY did he miss you! We sent him pictures every few hours. Everyone loved meeting you and you were such a good boy! You just let everyone love on you. Mama is still recovering from our trip - all of the running around made us both exhausted. You did awesome on the flight - you ate and slept the whole way through.
  • Yesterday you did the cutest thing! You were in your bouncy chair while I was on a business call. I walked over to get you after the call ended and you smiled so big when you saw me. It melted my heart!
  • You are so adorable and wonderful - Daddy and I are still debating if I will go back to work... It's a tough choice but I know we will do our best to make the right one for our family.
  • You have started rubbing your eyes when you're sleepy - so cute!
  • We have stayed in the house a lot this month because we have had SO much snow and I don't like to take you out in that. This has actually been a record breaking month of snow and I will be glad when spring is here so we can go on walks outside!
  • You love music - country music is your favorite!
  • Man can you blow out a diaper! It's pretty funny and pretty messy!

We love you so much, baby, and are so proud of you! You are growing so fast and amaze us with all the new things you do each day.

Love,

Mama


Friday, February 12, 2010

Not So Much...


Before Hayden was born, I thought I was pretty well prepared to be a mommy. I had worked at several daycare centers in college (and for a few months when we first moved to Pittsburgh) and have friends and family with babies and kids who are pretty great about sharing with me. I have watched my little cousins by myself while their parents were out of town, kept my godchildren and babysat. I was nervous about the whole labor part, but not about the whole bringing baby home and being a mommy part. How quickly I discovered how little I knew! Everything is so different when it's your own and when that little one is your responsibility 24/7. I definitely have a new amount of respect for all of my mommy friends. WOW! Being a mommy is certainly the most rewarding and the hardest job on the planet (as is being a daddy - this is just written from my perspective and in no way is meant to downplay the importance of dads). Here are some things I have realized since becoming Hayden's mommy.
  1. Sometimes you're doing good just to find time to brush your teeth. Seriously, especially after my Mom went back to Texas, finding time to brush my teeth can be hard. Some days, Hayden just needs me more in the morning and then I am busy doing household chores while he sleeps, so I don't find the time to brush my teeth. I do manage to get them brushed before Chip gets home from work. Now, I have figured it out, after I feed Hayden at 6, I give him to Chip for morning Daddy snuggle time (and Daddy changing diaper time) while I go to the bathroom, take my birth control (weird since I haven't taken it in almost five years), wash my face and brush my teeth. I normally take a shower during one of Hayden's morning naps or I wait until after Chip gets home.


  2. Yes, it does take three hours sometimes to get out the door. It's the getting out the door part taht is so important. For my mental health, and Hayden's, we need to get out and about - even though it may take me three hours and we only run to Target. The fresh air, seeing other people, it's what we both need. That being said - I won't get out if the weather is iffy - I trust myself, just not other people and don't want to put Hayden in harm's way if I don't have to.


  3. Spit up down the boobs, in the hair or on your shoulder is just a way of life and can also been thought of as your new perfume. Now, it just makes me laugh. I clean up Hayden and then realize that crusty substance on my chest is from Hayden. I also have learned how important it is to change those pads in my bra, because eww! Not a nice smell.


  4. There is SO a difference in diapers and diaper rash ointment. I didn't completely get this until Hayden. We have to use a different brand at night because he will wet through his diaper and pj's if we don't. We use Pampers Swaddler diapers during the day and Pampers Baby Dry at night. We have tried many, many brands and these two work the best for us.


  5. What works for other babies may or may not work for yours and sometimes that changes day to day. You learn that you do what works for your family and go with that. Most importantly, you learn not to judge what works for other families. I was given two books that some friends of ours used and loved - Becoming Babywise and The Happiest Baby on the Block. I read both and tried some techniques from both. Some worked awesome and others failed miserably. From Babywise, I tried following the schedule recommended and putting Hayden down before he was asleep and letting him cry. This went on for 10 minutes - he was so upset that he was doing the hiccup crying. Then I started crying. This didn't work for us - I can't do it and that is okay. One technique that did work from Babywise was, at night, to feed Hayden when he woke up and put him right back down. This normally works - some nights it doesn't and I am okay with that. Chip or I will rock or hold Hayden to settle him down. Crying is his way of telling us that he needs us and we are happy to oblige and comfort him. From Happiest Baby, the swaddling and shhshhing works for us. Hayden doesn't like to be swaddled any longer - but for his first month, he really liked it. Right now, we have a hybrid version of parenting - baby and parent led, attachment, babywise and happiest. This works for our family. Hayden sleeps in his new monkey or in the bassinett beside our bed. He naps wherever he falls asleep - be it his crib, pack and play, monkey, swing or infant seat. Sometimes he sleeps in my arms on or Chip's chest at naptime and we just enjoy those sweet moments, because, before we know it, those moments will be gone.


  6. You won't hesitate to buy something for your baby, but you (happily) put yourself on the back burner when it comes to buying for yourself. For example, buying a monkey infant seat for your baby and telling your spouse that is your Valentine's gift from him to you.


  7. You wouldn't trade one moment of your life and now know that your life is complete. The love we have for Hayden is indescribable. He was well worth the wait and we love him so very much. Look at his sweet face - how could we not fall in love the instant we saw it (and before)?

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Weather Outside is Frightful...

Our house

Chip's truck

Our street - after being plowed on Sunday


Normally, I tend to think that the news hypes up the weather - they will talk about a severe snow storm and we only get a few inches. Well, this time, the weather lived up to the hype it received. The news said we would get about a foot of snow beginning Friday afternoon and ending Saturday afternoon. In reality, two and half feet of snow is what fell from the sky. The official reading is 21.3 inches, making this snow storm the 4th largest in Pittsburgh history - the last snow storm of this magnitude was in 1993.
So, how did this Texan cope with all that snow? At first, I was mesmerized by how beautiful it was and looked forward to a lazy weekend in my pj's with my two favorite guys. I thought about how exciting the snow will be next year when we can play with Hayden in it. Then, at 1:30 on Saturday morning, we lost power. I freaked - we have a six week old baby and a vehicle snowed in with streets that weren't plowed. I have experienced power outages in the blazing heat of Texas, but not in the cold. Luckily, the low was in the upper 20's, so it wasn't SO scary. We bundled Hayden up in his fleece sleeper, socks, hat, fuzzy blanket and slept with him on our chests to make sure he stayed warm. At 9:00, the temperature in our bedroom was 60 and it was 54 downstairs. We text messaged three of our friends who lived nearby to see if they had power. They all did and invited us over. Chip went outside and started digging out the Durango (thank God we have a 4x4 vehicle and that Chip knows how to drive in this madness). Our friends that live a half mile up the road invited us to their house. It took us until 10:30 to get there due to Chip having to dig out the car and driveway and then to drive there on unplowed streets. I have never been so grateful for power!







Chip went back and forth between their house and ours several times to check on the girls (they were doing fine upstairs where the temperature stayed around 60). When the 9 o'clock news said the low would be 8, Chip headed to our house to get the dogs and bring them to our friends to stay in their basement. When he got to our house and our power was back on, so he came back and picked Hayden and I up. I am very thankful that our power company had our power back on so quickly and that we have friends who took us in.







Now, the news is predicting another 10 inches by tomorrow afternoon. This is crazy! Hayden and I will stay house bound - poor Chip has to go to work. The snow is gorgeous though - it does look like we are in a snow globe. I will be thankful when Hayden and I go to Texas to visit next week - we need to thaw out!


:::

On another snow related note, how is it that the news finds the most interesting people to interview? They did a segment on people who didn't have power and two of the people interviewed had little ones! One had a three month old and two younger kids and were using a kerosene heater to warm their home. NOT SAFE! Another family had a one year old with sickle cell amenia and couldn't have his breathing treatments since they had no power. My heart just breaks for those kids to be in such cold houses. Chip and I had talked and, if we couldn't get out, were going to call 911 to come get us and take us to a hotel. Once we saw the news, we realized that there are warming stations all over the city for those without power. I have never heard of such a thing - but Chip knew about them.