"The thistle is a prickly flower, aye, but how it is sweetly worn."

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Scattered and moving

Well we are moving and so many things have been going on. I have been writing the blog posts without putting pics on yet and thus not publishing them. Result: many things are out of order. I am going to add links to the new blogs for those of you who do not check the blogs via facebook...






Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Let it Snow part deux








I cannot believe Jude saw his second snow in a month today! It would be his 3rd if we had stayed in Denton for Christmas! I really love how 'global warming' is affecting north Texas...

Nursery Ideas

So now that we have finally closed on our house, I am seriously piecing together Jude's nursery. Michael and my dad have been busy painting the house, and Jude's room is painted 'Devonshire' by Ralph Lauren. It's a basic taupe/yellow color. We went back and forth between that and a green. I don't want to feel confined to using the same theme as he grows older, and taupe's are so easy to play around with.

The general 'theme' for his nursery is vintage with a touch of classic trains. My inspiration came from two places: 1) Michael was obsessed with trains as a boy and cannot wait to get out his Lionel train set to play with Jude and 2) last Christmas Michael's mom gave him an old stream train luggage shelf that she found in some antique store. I've decided this shelf would be perfect in his nursery. It's an actual vintage train item, so it looks more classy than just plastering train pics all over.

I've been spending his nap times looking on the internet for pics to inspire me. Most of these are off of baby blogs I found on topbabyblogs.com
We are going with the classic Jenny Lind crib because it has the most vintage look about it. It's a classic...


This picture I love because of the lighting. In general, lighting might be one of my favorite things about decorating. It can completely change a room. I like the idea of the lighting not being centralized, but rather spaced about.


Ok, I have been saying I wanted to buy a cheap mobile to cut the pieces off and hang little toy trains from it. This person obviously read my mind, but is even better. I love the simplicity of the wire. Bonus: I can definitely do this myself! Also, all these different objects made me think of being more creative than just trains. For example, perhaps a swatch of engineer patterned cloth or an old train ticket...



This is the Kasey bedding from Pottery Barn Kids that we have already bought. Classic without having pictures of trains all over the place.


Yes, I know this is a girl's nursery, but I love the lighting. It's similar to the other picture in that the lighting is not centralized. However, I love how soft and soothing the lighting is. It makes the room seem so calm and tranquil. Now I just need to find fixtures that would shine in this way, but more masculine.

So that's where I am with this. Michael's parents will be here from Jan 15th - 25th and I know they will enjoy helping us. Michael and his dad have plans to build a train track to go around the top of the wall which will be awesome.

I'm just excited to finally start my 'nesting' however late...

Trial and Error


Jude has forever had a issue with keeping his pacifier in his mouth while sleeping. Frustrates him to no end. Now that Jude has discovered the power of his hands a wee bit, he is realizing he can use them to keep the pacifier in his mouth. He hasn't completely mastered his hand/eye coordination, but he is making big steps towards it. I'm looking forward to this because nap time will go much more smoothly without mommy coming in to save the day and replace the pacifier!

Mmmm Aaah went the little green frog one day


Does anyone recognize that childhood song? I used to like it, although I think my sister Megan was the one who came home singing it and I just thought it was funny to watch her. On the aahh part you are supposed to stick your tongue out like a frog. Talk about preschool fun!

I think of this song a lot when Jude is playing. He makes the cutest sounds and expressions when he is playing these days! Would you like to know what his favorite "toy" is? His tongue. Greatest thing ever in his opinion. I can just picture him loving the mmm ahhh song in a couple years! Enjoy this video with Jude and his favorite "friend".





Sunday, December 27, 2009

Because this is so true... and I only have a 2 month old.

...and I teach 2nd grade so I like the children's book reference....

If you give a mom a muffin,
She'll want a cup of coffee to go with it.
She'll pour herself some.
Her three-year-old will spill the coffee.
She'll wipe it up.
Wiping the floor, she'll find dirty socks.
She'll remember she has to do laundry.
When she puts the laundry in the washer,
She'll trip over boots and bump into the freezer.
Bumping into the freezer will remind her she has to plan for supper.
She will get out a pound of hamburger.
She'll look for her cookbook ("101 Things To Do With a Pound of Hamburger").
The cookbook is sitting under a pile of mail.
She will see the phone bill, which is due tomorrow.
She will look for her checkbook.
The check book is in her purse that is being dumped out by her two-year-old.
She'll smell something funny.
She'll change the two year old's diaper.
While she is changing the diaper, the phone will ring.
Her five-year-old will answer and hang up.
She'll remember she wants to phone a friend for coffee.
Thinking of coffee will remind her that she was going to have a cup.
And chances are...
If she has a cup of coffee,
Her kids will have eaten the muffin that went with it.

~ anonymous

Discoveries!!!

Jude has discovered something new! Today during his bath he discovered that having water poured over his little toes feels pretty dang good! Everytime I would pour the water, he would raise his feet to make sure the stream went over them. I was really excited for him that he realized HE could make something happen on his own.

I eventually moved the faucet so that it was close to his feet. He moved his toes back and forth in it. He was so relaxed. I think bathtime is about to get even more fun. Next step- toys and splashes!

Here is a little vid of Jude playing in the tub: Feet in the Tub

10 weeks old!

Jude Dylan is 10 weeks old today! I love babycenter.com because they email me weekly updates on typical babies Jude's age. This is the same website I used to get week by week pregnancy updates.

Based off what they say, Jude is right on track for the most part. He is really responding to voices and sounds. This is a catch 22 because he used to sleep through anything. Now, that he is more alert, he is more likely to wake up out of curiosity.


He is full of coos and smiles which has made him most fun. He recognizes me and even Michael now, which makes us feel pretty cool. It's starting to feel like we have a relationship with Jude, as opposed to being his caretakers.

Jude's schedule is so much easier now. Plus, now that I understand his cries and how he cycles through eating, playing, sleeping, repeat, I am better able to figure out why he is crying. Now that I know what he needs, his crying is minimal. He's really an easy baby, and we are pretty lucky. We will probably pay for it the next go at pregnancy.


Jude is eating about every 3 hours and we are still breastfeeding. Yay! Thankfully, with the help of my breastpump, we will be able to keep it up exclusively for a while longer. I'm hoping to not have to use formula at least for the first 6 months. He eats about 7 times a day. Babycenter.com said we are one of the "lucky ones" because Jude sleeps for long periods at night. His long period keeps getting longer and longer. At 8 weeks, he went from 8 to 3. Now, he's stretching it form 8 to 4. He typically doesn't fully wake up until 8:30 or 9, which is awesome. He's really a good sleeper, and from what I've read, he should remain a good sleeper through childhood. Thank you God!


One thing they mentioned which I haven't noticed is being able to roll from the back to the side. I'm not sure if Jude can do that yet or not. I haven't paid much attention to it. What I do know is that when I lay him in his bed for naps or at night, he makes a 90 degree turn during his sleep. Even when I lay him on his stomach for naps, he does this, so I assume he can at least do some moving like they are referring to.

Jude and I are going to enjoy week 10 together setting up his new room and not having to go to a babysitter. I go back to work on the 5th, and I will really miss all these moments!

Jude's First Christmas

Jude's first Christmas was quite bittersweet for me. Obviously, it was sweet because it was his first Christmas. It was bitter because if it weren't for Jude it would have been the worst Christmas ever.


For the sake of time, I'm not going in to details, but just comment if you want them. Anyway, we have been put through the ringer in a million ways trying to buy a house. Our 70 yr old agent was amazed, and after 30 years in the real estate business you would think he would have already seen it all. Crazy things like having both people working on our mortgage leaving the company a week before the scheduled closing and thus closing being pushed back 2 weeks. Anyway, we finally did close on the 22nd, 3 days before Christmas. (House pics will come in a later blog.)



Anyway, we had planned on repainting the entire house and recarpeting as well. Originally, we were going to close before Thanksgiving and would be done with this process in time to really enjoy the holidays in our new home. Didn't happen. So Michael has been diligently, trying to maximize any available hours to get this house painted.



In all his dedication, he decided to stay and paint on Christmas Eve while I came down to my parents the 23rd. (Note: we were supposed to celebrate in New York with perfect Christmas weather, but since we closed on the 22nd, we had to cancel the flight. That was boo for Christmas numero uno.)



While Michael was working on Christmas Eve, the unthinkable happened. Denton got a white Christmas! What the crap! So not only did we close on our house late to mess up original plans, now I missed enjoying a white Christmas at the new house. Boo for Christmas numero dos.



While Michael was working on Christmas Eve, the unthinkable happened. Denton got a white Christmas! What the crap! So not only did we close on our house late to mess up original plans, now I missed enjoying a white Christmas at the new house. Boo for Christmas numero dos.



While Michael was working on Christmas Eve, the unthinkable happened. Denton got a white Christmas! What the crap! So not only did we close on our house late to mess up original plans, now I missed enjoying a white Christmas at the new house. Boo for Christmas numero dos.



While Michael was working on Christmas Eve, the unthinkable happened. Denton got a white Christmas! What the crap! So not only did we close on our house late to mess up original plans, now I missed enjoying a white Christmas at the new house. Boo for Christmas numero dos.

And bonus: The real cake topper to this whole year was that the road at our house iced over, sadly resulting in 5 deaths. Michael was stuck in Denton at our house until 12am Christmas morning. He arrived in Houston around 4 or so, but missed all those Christmas firsts with Jude and me. Jude will never remember this, but it just really made a trying year even more frustrating.

I'm really looking forward to next year in our house. However, I'm giving myself a band aid. The carpet will be put on the 30th and 31st. Then our little family is decorating the tree in our new house and we will be celebrating Christmas the weekend of Martin Luther King Day because I have a 3 day weekend. Will our new neighbors think we are psycho? Probably, but I don't care. And hopefully God will show mercy and send some snow that weekend!

Enjoy the pics!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve

Here are some of my favorite pics of Jude from Christmas Eve....


I am loving how his little arm is perched up on the arm rest. Precious...



Future Naval Academy plebe?


Wittle Santa...


Sitting with Pops in his new Christmas pajamas. He's ready to go to bed and await his first visit from Santa...


2 month visit

Jude had his 2 month doctor visit yesterday. The doctor said he was doing great! She said he's really strong as far as being able to support himself on his tummy, standing on his legs, and of course holding his head up. He's such a wiggle worm, so I wasn't really surprised by that.

We talked about his clogged tear duct, which apparently can remain clogged for up to a year. Looks like I may potentially be cleaning eye boogers for a long time!

She thinks his continuously stuffy nose may actually have been less of a cold and more like allergies. I blame Michael's genes for this. His allergies are horrendous.

Jude is a completely average baby. He was in the 50% for height, weight, and head circumfrence. He is 23 inches and 11 pounds, 13 ounces.


After our preliminary research, we decided to pass on the shots for now. I don't think we are going to be completely hardcore and never vaccinate. For now, we are planning on waiting until Jude is 2-3 years old.
We enjoyed hearing everyone's opinions and perspectives. However, we decided to wait because the only people who could support their claims with evidence and research were those who said "wait". So we are waiting, at least until we have time to do more thorough research. I am planning on starting with talking to the Denton County Health Dept on the prevalence of the vaccinated diseases and deaths. If a particular disease (and causing deaths or serious side effects) is actually common in our area, it would make sense to vaccinate. If not, there really is no need.
Regardless, we are waiting. When we do decide to vaccinate, we will only get one shot at a time and wait a couple weeks to give the next one. We possibly will be driving to Dallas to do this because so far I only know of a pediatrician down there who is willing to seperate out vaccines. IE one vaccine for measles, then a couple weeks the vaccine for mumps, then another couple weeks for rubella, etc. This seems to be the most responsible choice. The reality is none of the drug companies ever test to see how this process affects infants, so why risk it?


I know other people have different opinions, and that is fine. We have chosen to wait. I am going to continue researching Denton County and vaccines in general. Eventually, I will post my findings for your information to use as you like.
I do think every parent should truly research this topic BEFORE vaccinating their child. Just asking your doctor his or her opinion does not really constitute getting the full story....

Just Let Me Sleep In The Tub Mom

Here are some links to some videos I uploaded to youtube. It was Jude's bathtime, and all he wanted to do was go to sleep....

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

To vaccinate or not to vaccinate


That's the question in our household this week anyway. Thanks to an old friend, I was put in contact with someone who is anti-vaccination allowing us to get the other side of the story. He told me about this natural doctor, Dr. Tenpenny, whose video we watched this evening to begin thinking through this process. There's a lot of information out there and even more money in books we could spend. We are not sure yet where we are in this process as far as long term is concerned. We don't think we will be vaccinating Jude at two months though. At most, we will chose one vaccine to administer. The question becomes which vaccine, if any, is important for Jude's health and well being currently. Michael is completely anti-vaccine. I'm leaning toward administering DTp only simply because it has been around for years and actually involves things Jude might actually come in to contact with. Currently praying about this decision and attempting to devour any and all available information. I don't normally ask for feedback from readers. However, this issue is important to me and I would love to know what you think or have experienced in regards to this. Prayers are also coveted as we try to make the best decision for our family.

Monday, December 21, 2009

A Little Photo Montage

Here are some pictures of Jude from the past week while I was at work:

Here is Jude hanging out with his soccer ball...


What's up.....


Naptime with Megs...


Naptime in general...


I love his little hands...


Too cool for school with his hand behind his head...


Hanging out after my work day...



Sunday, December 20, 2009

Jingle Bell Rock


Today while I was feeding Jude, I had Christmas music playing. Jingle Bell Rock came on, and Jude just stopped eating. His eyes got huge, and he became super alert. Then he just started smiling and smiling. I started singing along with the song and he started cooing! He didn't start eating again until the song was over. I think we've found Jude's favorite Christmas song!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Break on through....

Michael was Mr. Mom for a couple days this past week while I was working. I was extremely curious as to how this would go since Michael has never been alone with Jude. Even when I let him hang out with Jude while I do things like shower or whatever, the second Jude even whimpers Michael comes to me and asks, "uh AB what do I do?" Needless to say, I was wondering how this would all go.


Well Michael in all his creativity, discovered one of Jude's new favorite things. Michael loves the Doors, among other various classic rock artists. In attempt to entertain Jude, he pulled from his arsenal of classic rock lyrics. He would sing a song and hope Jude liked it. After a few attempts, he tried "Break on Through to the Other Side". Jude loves this! Something about the chorus just makes him smile and smile. I was skeptical at first, but the pictures are proof. You can see how much fun they are having "bonding" over rock and roll....


Some of my favorite childhood memories include listening to old records with my dad. I'm excited Jude will have similar types of memories.

Back in the Saddle Again

Well I did it. I survived 5 whole days away from my baby. The only way I can say I made it is prayer, prayer, prayer. And lots of it. Looking back, it amazed me I cried as little as I did. I hope everyone continues to pray for me when I go back on January 5th. That will be much harder. Counting down from 5 days to two weeks off is not that bad.

Jude survived it. He actually was a real sweetheart and starting sleeping 7 hours straight Sunday night. What a welcome surprise for a work day. Actually that first night, I woke up confused because I was so used to getting up at 1 to feed him. I barely slept between 1 and 3:30 when he actually woke up. I just knew he would start crying any minute. Wrong. My baby is growing up.

The sweetest (and possibly what made me cry the most) thing is that being gone so long made me realize how much Jude recognizes me. I had never been gone really so it really wasn't obvious. However, the second I walk in the door and open my mouth he stops what he's doing. I had no idea he really could recognize my voice. Let me tell you, this warms my heart like nothing else! Plus, within 5 minutes of him realizing I'm home, he always wants to eat even though he usually just ate. Sorry if that is TMI. Eating is really the only way he knows how to be close to me and interact with me at this age. I think it's really sweet that that's the first thing he thinks of when I get home. I really can't hardly believe he actually knows how to miss me. What a sweet baby!

Also, he seems to realize that I leave around 6:30 because at 6:00 he wakes up ready to play. It's like he knows that this is the only chance he will get to play with me for awhile so he wants to take advantage of it. He makes me feel special!

All in all, it went well. I can't say I made it to school on time every day, but it was a good trial run. Now, I'm ready to make the most of the next 2 weeks off. Nothing like 5 days without your baby to make you appreciate all those special moments even more.

Here are some sweet pictures of Jude during this week:


Two Months Old

Jude Dylan is 2 months old! Can't believe it! He has changed so much!

Here he is as a newborn:

One month:

Two months:

He has so many new skills. He is smiling more and more with his little baby coos and laughs. He really likes interacting with people now. He's starting to spend a lot more time turning to look at sounds he hears, especially when people talk. He still likes to stare intently and study random things on the wall. He's done this since day one honestly.


He's starting to get interested in his toys and playing more. He's really using his hands and feet all the time. He's really getting difficult to hold on to because he is just never ever still. My side of the family is thrilled because he moves his left arm a little bit more than the right. Since my brother pitched in high school and is now pitching for the Naval Academy, they are hoping Jude will carry on the pitching tradition. Everyone knows a left handed pitcher is much better than a rightie. He is in love with his tongue. He sticks it in and out over and over and over. He looks like a little frog.


He's outgrown his bassinet and has moved in to a big bed. Interestingly enough, this move has made clear just how much of a mover he is. The first night, we placed him with his head down at one end. By his 3:30 feeding, he had made a 90 degree turn in the bed. I've decided there will be no stuffed animals in his bed. Talk about a sids risk. He's all over the place.

The most amazing new skills however include moving closer to sleeping through the night. He's doing really awesome for being a breastfed baby. Right now he eats at 8:00 and is in bed by about 8:45. He sleeps until 3:30. After that, he pretty much eats every 3 hours, with the exception of his cluster feed when I get home from work. I'm hoping he'll get to sleeping through the night early in January.

We have his two month appointment on Wednesday. Still processing through how we will deal with the whole shot issue. My main thing is that the shots be thimersol free. He's supposed to get hep b (he got the 1st one in the hospital), DTP, some meningitis one, and rotavirus. As long as they are thimersol free, I will probably get 2. I don't know. I'll post my decision sometime after Wednesday....