Monday, November 30, 2009

I love food and I love family...which makes Thanksgiving my favorite holiday. Now don't get me wrong, I love me some Christmas. I love the significance of the holiday, two arm raises to God, thanks for my salvation! However, sometimes I can get caught up in the gift-giving stress and it makes me lose sight of what the holiday truly represents. I get caught up in the "ooooh will he like it? Oh my goodness--how can we afford this? I wish we could give more! Umm....will she get me a gift? I better get one for her!! know the deal.

With Thanksgiving, there is no gift giving stress-- just food, family, love, PIE, mashed potatoes, games, laughter, parades, floats,, gravy...oh the gravy, and memories. I'm big into reflecting. I love to reminisce. While driving down to my parents house on Thanksgiving I compiled a mental list of the things I was most thankful for this year. It was a BIG year for the gambrels. THANK YOU LORD FOR....

1. multi-pack pregnancy tests ( one just wasn't good enough for me...i required 6)

2. my husband who has and will love me unconditionally ( he deserves four gold stars for enduring my hormones during pregnancy)

3. sonic's strawberry limeades and the glorious half price happy hour from 2-4

4. elastic

5. chicken go to lunch when i realized that they weren't kidding about lunch meat

6. my family and friends, who were there for me when I was excited, ecstatic, scared, happy, weepy, psychotic, nervous, overwhelmed and joyful

7. my anesthesiologist (PTL for him...PTL)
8. narcotics

9. our small group ( a support system within THE largest support system)

10. paradise bakery...paradise bakery...paradise bakery

11. my parents who were there to answer my "Is it normal's? Should I's? What would you do's? I don't know if I can do this's? Do I look chunky's? and Can you help me's???"

12. disposable diapers....nuf' said.

13. my crazy, cuddly, wiggly, beautiful lilly--the biggest and greatest blessing of 2009

14. digital cameras and LARGE memory cards

15. D batteries...the amazing power that makes Lilly's swing addiction possible


17. Jeremiah 29:11 (look it up......right now.)

18. upbeat music and it's ability to alter my mood in a positive way.

19. forgiveness
--from my Jesus because I'm a hopeless mess and he loves me anyway
-- from my friends because this baby business has made my hang out sessions and phone calls few and far between
--from my husband for my irrational and endearing behavior ;)
-- from Lilly for being my guinea pig and "well, let's try it!" for EVERYTHING parent related. So sorry bout the tip of your finger during my "I could totally clip your nails while you're awake" phase.
-- to anyone reading this blog, because I've realized that lately, I've been rather longwinded!!!

20. countless baby items that have been essential in keeping this chick alive for the past two months. I could never thank you enough Carters, Playtex, Enfamil, Johnson and Johnson, Fisher Price, and Boppy!!

Now wasn't that fun??? :)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

lilly and i just got back from her first adventure to a mall. aaaaaaaaannnndddd more importantly it was her first trip to mommy's favorite store, american eagle. she did great long as the stroller didn't stop moving.

ahhhhhhhhhhh milestones people, milestones.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


80 years ago, Scott's sassy and spunky grandma Max was born. Last night, we celebrated her life and ultimately her legacy with a big party. If I'm being honest, an 80th birthday party is not my ideal way to spend a babyless Saturday night. However this was not your typical "older generation" party. No--no this was a catered dinner with a live band and oh...100+ of Grandma Max's closest friends and family. You know, I hope when I'm 80 I can fill a room with over a hundred people who know and love me. It says a lot about gma max, her character, zest for life, and her all around spunkyness.

Last night, the birthday bash had a jazz band--complete with suspenders, banjos, a large bass (not the fish...), and lead singer with a disco-ball esque dress and a deeeeeeeeeep shade of red lipstick that did NOT compliment her skin tone-thank you very much. They focused on tunes that were popular when gma max was born in 1929. They highlighted top billboard hits from that era and it was actually really enjoyable. The band played songs that Judy Garland sang and were written by Cole Porter and Hoagy Carmicheal. They were light and airy tunes about love, lazy rivers, sunny days, and happiness. It got me thinking....

When Lilly is 80, she will undoubtedly wanna throw a big party, just like her great gma max, no?What kind of songs will she play from "her generation"? I just find it really befuddling that she'll be sitting at a table surrounded by her friends and family and they'll be tapping their feet, bobbing their heads, and listening to tunes entitled: Boom Boom Pow, Russian Roulette, Tik Tok, and Paparazzi.

Will her lead singer of her birthday band resemble the infamous Lady Gaga? ohmygoodness.

I bet it was a surreal thing to think of the year 2009 back in far into the future. When my little stinker is 80 years old it will be 2089. (math done correct...whew)Surely they'll be living on Mars by then, riding in flying cars, and Rosie the robot from the Jetsons will be a reality.


Tuesday, November 17, 2009



Below are my embarassing shenanigans required to get a simple smile from this giggle box. If you enjoy watching a grown woman speak in an increasingly high pitched voice, create nonsense words, and FAIL at holding a camera steady....please enjoy!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Let's talk smiles.

Smiling is the universal language. It every culture, country, and galaxy it means the same thing. Happiness. Pleasure. Enjoyment.

In elementary school, a smile means an insta-friend. A smile across a classroom or from a swing on the playground means one thing. It starts with a smile and if it is reciprocated back...bam. friends.

In high school, a smile from a passing mcdreamy boy could alter your entire day. It could change your entire focus and embark you on a rollercoaster of emotions of deciphering what that exact smile "meant".

As adults, smiles are exchanged between lovers, friends, co-workers, and strangers. Each smile can mean something different. A hello, good-bye, i love you, i'm so glad you're here, you're hilarious, you look beautiful, you have something in your teeth.... A smile means happiness. However, the first smile from your child means something entirely different...I am not kidding when I say the first time Lilly smiled at me ( not the gassy or dreaming kind) it changed my life. A smile from a baby does not only mean happiness, to me it was a joy-injected I love you and thank you.

I was sitting on the couch with little miss balanced on my legs. She is soothed by music so I had CMT on and we were counting down the top twenty. I had to see if Carrie was number one. She was, der. I may or may not have been signing....:) I was moving her arms and legs to the music and she was staring at me intently. I lifted her arms in the air to match the raise of pitch in the song and then she smiled-- eyes squinting, cheeks puffing, gums glaring. It was beautiful and instantly brought tears to my eyes. It was the same flooding emotion that I felt the first time I saw lilly in the hospital--immediate and overwhelming.

To me, that smile meant a number of things. It meant she was happy, she loved me, and it meant that she appreciates all that we do for her. For the past 7 weeks, we have spent almost every waking moment caring for her. All the while, the only true emotions we've seen from her were displeasure, hunger, and pain via crying. I would NEVER trade any moment of my time with her these past seven weeks....but ya know, it's hard not seeing any happiness emitted. I'm not saying that Lilly hasn't been happy for the past seven weeks. How could she not? She's been loved on everyday all day by very awesome people ::wink::. Up until that smile, she had not been able to show her happiness. I needed it. That smile was confirmation that we are doing things right. That smile was her way of communicating her love. To be completely honest, it was a turning point in our relationship. My love for her grew deeper. I was consumed with joy myself after seeing it. I craved another!!! Britney was singing over and over in my mind "gimme more, gimme me, gimme gimme more!" I was hooked, and her smile was my drug.

This happened about a week ago. I've seen lots of smiles since. I have to act like a complete ding-dong to get them, and if you were spying on me in my house I would be completely embarrassed. You'd think that I had 'dun lost my mind'. I ALMOST caught a smile in the picture but ::sigh::, I was a second too late. My dern camera just isn't fast enough for my darlin.



Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The inside workings of an infant are perplexing...and I'm determined to figure this babe out.

While pregnant, I remember thinking about Lilly and how our life would be. Being a teacher, I have plans. FOR EVERYTHING. On Monday morning, I walk in and have the entire week planned out. BY THE HOUR. I know exactly what I need to get done and how I'm going to get it done. I have lists of supplies I need and so on. While not on paper, I have a back up plan for when things don't go as originally planned. Occasionally, I have a back up-back up plan if plan A and plan B fail. So likewise, I had (keyword: HAD) a plan for when little miss Lilly arrived. Here is how I had everything planned out....

Plan A
1. I would nurse Lilly
2. I would pump and let Scott feed her at night when he was home
3. She would grow and be happy 80% of the time. She'd only be fussy when she was hungry or needed her diaper changed.

OKay....that planned tanked before we were even out of the hospital. Thanks, body. After getting over the original disappointment of that plan failing, I formed Plan B. Plan B
1. We would feed Lilly formula
2. We would use the bottles I received from my shower, the kind all my friends recommended
3. I would become super saver and use the coupons that I signed up for online.
4. I would get bonus points because I also signed up my mom and mother-in-law. :)
5. She would grow and be happy 80% of the time. She'd only be fussy when she was hungry or needed her diaper changed.

So here I am PLANLESS and trying to figure out this chick. The inside workings of an infant are perplexing. I know more now about my baby's digestive system than I thought I ever would. I really should get college credit for all this knowledge I'm obtaining. No, I'm serious.

All plans thrown out the window, this is what I know...

Lilly is in pain when she eats and it BREAKS.MY.HEART. that I don't know how to fix it. Here is what we've tried via our pediatricians recommendations...
1. Switch to a partially broken down formula--easier to digest
2. Spend a small fortune buying differing types of bottles
3. Try different nipples
4. Burp more frequently
5. Mylicon at every meal

No changes. She possibly has a milk-protein allergy. I've read that many babies cannot easily digest the proteins found in cow's milk. So we begrudgingly switched to the soy formula. And let me say this.......HOLY COW IT IS FLIPPIN EXPENSIVE!!!! How can SOY formula be double the cost of regular formula?? Somewhere, some exec at Enfamil is sitting on a big fat pile of gold coins (I imagine like the opening scene where uncle scrooge is swimming in the gold safe on Duck know you remember it!! Whooooowooo!) and thinking...

"Parents of infants with milk allergies will stop at nothing to soothe their babies. They are emotionally drained and willing to do whatever it takes to help. ::rubbing hands together in a menacing way:: Let's make the soy hypo-allergenic formula DOUBLE the price!! Muahahahahaha."

Evil. Jerks.

So here I with my non-plan plan... and so far...(fingers crossed-- praying to God above) it is working and I'm seeing relief for her.

1. We are paying an arm and a leg for her 12.6 ounce can of formula.
2. Giving her a once-a-day dose of medicine for reflux
3. Keeping her upright for at least 20 minutes after each meal
4. I RELY ON THE COUPONS and get uber excited when they arrive.
5. My target runs are strictly for groceries now... because of lack of moolah due to formula( so sad) The accessory aisle is so lonely without me.

6. She is growing and HAPPY 80% of the time. She is fussy when she's hungry, needs a diaper change, is bored, wants a cuddle, and if it is between 7-8pm. Hey, I was a complete ignoramus to HONESTLY think that a baby would only cry for two reasons.

Here is a picture of the happier Lilly. P.S. she's smiling now....I'll blog about that life-changing experience later. :) !!!!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

babies cry for many reasons, but never to make you unhappy.

read out loud daily, rinse, repeat