Saturday, June 25, 2011

Flying Like a Helicopter... and Drooling

This is from a month ago. But I can't believe I forgot to post! So funny!

Thursday, June 23, 2011


It occurred to me recently that I sure do spend a whole lot of time being fearful. I had never noticed it either. It's something my counselor pointed out to me - leave it to those counselors!

But at times, I'm struck with paralysis. I want to say something to a loved one about how an event or statement affected me, about my feelings, but I stop myself. If I say that to that person, they might feel {insert emotion}. I have this problem of taking on other people's emotions. AKA codependency. If I say something and someone feels a certain way in response to what I said, I feel immediately at fault. But something I'm learning - I am not responsible for the way someone else feels. Period.

Another scenario: Something I know to be wrong is unfolding right before my eyes and I sit there dumbstruck, thinking, What do I do? It'd be too awkward to {insert action or words here}. That should be cue. >Fear alert!< Back away from that thought and strongly consider saying what you are fight to or not to say.

I share this because it occurred to me that this struggle with fear is something the Lord talks about consistently in Scripture. Both in the Old Testament and the New. So apparently I'm not the only one struggling with this. And Scripture is very clear that we are only to fear the Lord, that fearing anything else is not honoring to Him. And this fear is certainly not from Him.

I found countless places in Scripture that commanded us to fear the Lord. And countless passages also stating, "Do not be afraid, for I [God] am with you." Sounds like another commandment to me.

What really got me though was this next passage:

1 John 4:17-19 (NIV)

17 This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. 18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
 19 We love because he first loved us.

Wouldn't Ya Know?

Because after 6 months, I STILL could not wear my wedding ring, Brendon got me this pretty ring to wear in the meantime!

I LOVE it! I love that it's simple yet has a wedding ring feel to it. I wore it proudly for five whole days... until yesterday, when my new ring started to feel a little loose. I know what you're thinking, "You must be joking, right?" Nope. Not kidding.

Funny that after 6 months, my wedding ring now fits. And overnight too. Is it bad that I am wishing I could fit into my new ring, rather than my actual wedding ring? Hmm...

At least I'm prepared for pregnancy (and post-pregnancy) #2...

Monday, June 20, 2011

Photo Shoot

You may have noticed the new photos around my blog. That's because we had a photo shoot this past weekend! Brendon gave this photo shoot to me as my Mother's Day gift. And some of our friends, Steve and Kristen Gee, took the photos for us. I think they did an awesome job! Here are some of the photos. Can't wait to order prints and frame a few...

Love, love, love these photos!

If you're in the Dallas area and want photos taken, check out the Gees' website, Good Afternoon Photography.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

We were privileged to have both of our dads in town for the day today! They flew up just for a few hours - came to church with us, went to lunch, and then hung out, before heading back to the airport for Houston to spend time with our siblings.

To our dads -

Thanks so much for coming up! We love you both and are so blessed to have you in our lives!

And to my hubby -

Happy first Father's Day! I'm so thankful to be married to you and to now have embarked on this parenting adventure with you! Thank you for being so supportive. Lil is lucky to have you as a father. I know you will be just as sweet, caring, and patient with her as you are with me. We are two lucky ladies!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Lil Swimming!

I forgot to share photos for Lil going swimming! She's been a couple times now. She doesn't seem to mind the water, but she doesn't splash around in it either. Still warming up!

We are starting swim lessons on Tuesday. Of course, they aren't really swim lessons at this age. They're more just to help her become comfortable in the water and learn to float on her back! How cool is that?


Fat baby in a little swim shirt...
Okay but really, this shirt is supposedly 12.5-18 lbs. She's 14 lbs. I'm thinking this brand runs seriously small.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Pouring Out the Wine

Sunday night Hubs and I did this.

This is what was left.

Five empty wine bottles.

I'm tired of alcohol ruining the lives of wonderful, well-meaning people. Of believers even. I'm tired of it ruining their families' lives too.

On Sunday night, my husband and I decided we had enough. I boxed up our wine glasses. Then we took the rest of our wine stash and dumped it. I'm sure our friends would have loved to have these bottles, but for this one night, I didn't care about "being resourceful, not wasteful." I just wanted to take a stand against alcohol. Our house is now a dry house.

This doesn't mean we won't have a drink at a wedding or family event. It just means that we will no longer keep alcohol in our home. After what I have seen with my brother and good friends, I don't want my family, my child, or even myself to be around alcohol. I don't want our friends to have access to it when they come over. We're through.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mommy Lessons - Month 4

The first post of Mommy Lessons that I did got such a good response that I thought I'd do another! So here it is - from the first four months!

  1. Babies progressively drool more and more as they get closer to getting their teeth in! Around 2 months, Lil started drooling. At 3 months, I'd say she drooled a lot. Last week I said she drooled much more than at 3 months. Today she has drooled much more than last week. Her shirt is soaked. It's our 3rd outfit. No idea when those teeth will appear - could be tomorrow, could be two months. Who knows.
  2. Bibs are a must. Like I said, drool-central.
  3. Spit up and drool are directly related. As drooling increases and teething approaches, spit up also increases! That's my experience at least.
  4. While we're talking about teething, let me mention this: teething diaper rash. Apparently not every baby gets it. It might be because she's drooling so much. It might be because her hands are constantly in her mouth and she's touched something germy. Whatever it is, her poop is ACIDIC! I've talked to other moms who have experienced this. (And those who haven't.) But if babies sit in this acidic poop for too long, they get sores on their bum. Not good. Lil got these about two months ago. It was awful. She woke up in the middle of the night crying, so I put her in a disposable diaper and COVERED her bottom in ointment. It took a week to go away! Today she woke up from nap never went to sleep for nap because of this same issue. Not good. It's heartbreaking.
  5. That whole rolling over at four months thing only happens (usually) if you're good about tummy time. So don't fret. Lil has rolled once. It was most likely an accident. To help her, I prop her arms up underneath her when she's on her tummy. This helps give her the idea that she doesn't have to be lying down with her face in her mat. She is happier because she can look around. And surely soon she'll realize she can flip herself.
  6. That bald spot on the back of your baby's head? All babies get it. It's called "the good baby bald spot." It means they're content to lie on their back and chill. Now the content part may not be true because like I said, all babies get it!
  7. Trimming a baby's fingernails with your teeth is the easiest and safest way to trim their baby nails. Since their nails are like tissue paper, it's pretty effortless.
  8. Cloth diapers are so not a big deal. More on cloth diapering here.
  9. A dark nursery enhances baby's sleep. Blinds, check. Curtains, check.
  10. Tired of feeling that baby weight? Two words for you: Jumping Jacks. A friend of mine told me she does 500 a day, and that's why she thinks she lost her baby weight so quickly. Well, I haven't found time to get to 500 a day. But I've made it to 250. I do them 50 at a time. I actually need to get back in the groove of my jumping jacks. Our recent travels threw me off.
  11. Baby weight does come off. I was beginning to doubt. But I'm making progress!
  12. Kisses on Lilleigh's neck and checks gets Mommy big smiles and lots of giggles!
  13. Read, read, read! Babies may not understand your exact words, but they are listening. Their little brains are like sponges, absorbing more and more each day. It was two days after we started reading The Jesus Storybook Bible: Every Story Whispers His Name to Lilleigh that she started "talking." This book, unlike many books geared towards babies, actually has a story line for her to track with. We read other books as well, but this was our first one to start reading.
  14. Daddies need to have their special time with the baby too. My hubby took to storytime with Lilleigh. She loves having him read to her. I think she loves his deep voice. Plus she doesn't get distracted knowing there's food around...
  15. Babies have a lot of STUFF. Period.
  16. Always have a spare outfit in the diaper bag. Wondering why? Read this post.
  17. A baby does in fact mean there will be less time for your dog. It just does. I was a skeptic. I thought nothing could ever come between Sammy and me. Then came Lilleigh. It doesn't mean I don't love my dog. I'm convinced she's the best dog in the entire world. I still try to walk her daily (though the Texas heat is kinda killing that...) and give her lots of pets and treats. But I can tell she feels neglected. Thankfully she's super sweet with Lilleigh, which makes my life a lot easier.
  18. Having two blogs and a baby is a little much. Not sure what I'm going to do when baby #2 comes along. This blog thing has been a constant battle in my mind. Of course, this blog isn't going anywhere. And the baby definitely isn't going anywhere!!! But Thankfully Thrifty is a little time-consuming... I'm NOT calling it quits! I love blogging and my deals and money-saving ways too much. But if you have any ideas on how to balance life as a mommy and blogging, be my guest... please tell me!
  19. There's not one "right way" to do things. Really. I've been brought up to know right from wrong, black from white. No gray. But parenting is different. Okay so there are clearly some wrong ways to do things! I won't go there. Surely you know what I mean.  But there are lots of RIGHT ways to do things. Lots. And what's right for one parent, family, or child is not always right for the next. So I'm learning to keep my mouth shut. Decide what is best for you, your family, and your baby. Then do it.
  20. Every day gets better. Every stage is more fun than the last. Have fun with it.
Your turn. What have your babe(s) taught you?

    Monday, June 13, 2011

    Swing to Crib Transition

    I've been asked about our swing to crib naptime transition. I wish I could say more, but here's what I got.

    First of all, I really think this was all just good timing. Lilleigh was totally ready for the transition. Around 2 months, I tried to transition her from her swing to crib, and that was a major failure. I had it set in my mind for some reason that she needed to be in her crib, that I was setting myself up for doom if I let her nap in her swing. There was really no logic in that thought. Finally I posted a plea for help on the transition on Facebook and a mom friend commented that she let her babies nap in their swings too and eventually they transitioned themselves to their cribs for nap. She said it was just no big deal. So since Lilleigh was napping well, I gave it a rest.

    It was silly for me to even try at two months because for the first three months of her life Lilleigh would take three hour long naps in her swing. Sometimes four. No, I'm not kidding. But somewhere just after three months, she started waking up from swing naps at around two hours... sometimes even one hour. That mom was right! Still in that past month I had experimented with getting her to nap in her crib, and best case scenario would be 45 minutes... worst case, 20. Ugh. But for her first morning nap of the day, sometimes she could sleep for as long as an hour in her crib - I think because it followed a full night of sleep, a feeding, and only brief activity. So for awhile I just tried to be intentional about having her take this first nap of the day in her crib. No bouncy chair. No outing. Just naptime. In her crib.

    Then I began experimenting more with her taking a daytime nap in her crib. And sometimes it would fail, meaning half an hour or less. This actually probably happened a handful of times. I didn't sweat it. I just put her in her swing for the next nap of the day so that she would at least get one good lengthy nap - and I would get one good length of time to get stuff done!

    Eventually she got better at napping in her crib and to the point that her naps in her crib were just as long as her dwindling naptimes in her swing. So I've actually gotten to the point that I no longer use her swing. Just her crib.

    I don't want her to be too dependent on her crib though, simply because I want her to be able to sleep in her stroller, car seat, etc when we are out and about. There's not a great way to ensure this except being really active. I'd say I'm moderately active. We definitely go out, have baby playdates, go to lunch with mommy's friends, run errands, etc, but I'm intentional about not overbooking us. We have one, maybe two, outings a day.

    Speaking of sleep, something else noteworthy - Hubby finally got curtain rods hung up in the nursery for me. And Lilleigh actually slept until 7 AM this morning! A nice break for Mom, since Lil had been getting up at 5:45 or 6. I think the curtains block out a little more light! Nice.

    Saturday, June 11, 2011

    No bottles here!

    Okay so that statement isn't exactly true. There are bottles here. Lots of bottles. More than we know what to do with. I have tried essentially every type of bottle that claimed to be the "miracle bottle." My baby girl doesn't want any of them. I have tried them all multiple times. Multiple times in a day. Many days a week. I've had my husband try without me in the house. My moms and mother-in-law have all tried. My neighbors and friends have tried. Lilleigh doesn't want anything to do with a bottle.

    Lilleigh didn't always do this. She DID take a bottle. We began giving her a bottle right around 4 weeks, when the lactation consultants suggest you introduce it. I thought we were doing everything right. She took it, which was awesome. But we weren't consistent. We didn't realize we weren't consistent though because I'd leave and leave a bottle with the person watching her. I guess I didn't realize that many of these times she didn't end up needing the bottle. Still, some experts say that this shouldn't matter, that the frequency of the bottle (once a week versus every other day or more) shouldn't matter, that some babies will stop taking a bottle no matter how often they were given it.

    Sometimes I get the feeling people don't believe me. They start giving me advice - "Just do... [a, b, and c]... then she'll take it. It worked for my baby." I tell them I've tried that and that it didn't work. They give me a sympathetic look, but I know they think I'm doing something wrong, that I'm just not trying hard enough.

    My friend Randi watched Lilleigh a few weeks ago to give my husband and I a date. (Sweet friend, I know.) I left her with a bottle and told her to be my guest, to please prove me wrong and get her to take a bottle. She confidently told me it wouldn't be a problem, that they'd get it. She's a mom, so I knew if anyone could get her to take that bottle, it'd be Randi. When we left, I really hoped that she'd prove me wrong, that Lilleigh would suck down that bottle with no complaints. But sure enough, when we got back, the bottle was still full and Lilleigh was hungry.

    This has happened multiple times with multiple people. Typically the story is that she got hungry and was crying, so they offered her the bottle, which then made her angry and fuss more. But once they took the bottle away, she settled down and stopped acting hungry. It's as if she says, "No problem. I'll wait." At least she has a good attitude about it.

    She won't suck on her toys or any pacifiers either. She'll suck on her fingers, burp cloths, loveys - anything human or soft. But today she actually sorta sucked (one suck) on her Wubbanub. She held the soft animal in her hands and then chewed on its limbs. I'm hopeful. Maybe playing with that long enough will get her sucking the paci part... and then just maybe she'll take a bottle!

    A friend of mine has a baby who did the same thing and just recently (at 5 months old!) decided to take a bottle. She says she thinks it must have just been a phase. I'm hopeful!

    Friday, June 10, 2011

    4 Months!

    Lilleigh is 4 months! And as of 4 months, Lilleigh...
    • Has been on 8 airplanes and been to 4 different states - Texas (duh!), Colorado, Arizona (airport - brief layover), and California. And she's done really well on every plane ride, being careful not to disturb the other passengers. This was her intent I'm sure...
    • Laughs A LOT! She loves it when I give her lots of kisses! She also likes it when I pretend to eat her hands.
    • Rolled over... once. I prop her arms up underneath her to help her lift herself up and give her the idea that being on her tummy isn't so bad. And one time she actually held herself up for a couple second and then rolled over. She hasn't done it since, but once is enough!
    • Grown lots of hair! You may not see it. But I see it! After she lost her hair, I was so distraught. I'm thrilled that she's getting hair back! It's pretty light (dirty blonde, I'd say), so it's sometimes hard to see. But it's there!
    • Gone back and forth between sleeping through the night and waking up at 4 AM. Still, one quick wake up at 4 AM isn't bad. I'll take it.
    • Wears size 3-6 month (and just plain 6 month) clothes.
    • Went from a size 1 to a size 2 diaper. And in her cloth diapers, we moved up a snap.
    • Swam for the first time.
    • Continues to "talk" up a storm!
    • Started pulling Mommy's hair - hard. Ow.
    • Become more efficient at nursing. She still likes to take her time sometimes, but she can be quick now.

    In just the past couple weeks, we have started using the exersaucer, and she loves it!

    Baby Weight Update!

    My update isn't exactly about my "weight loss." Since I did my happy dance two weeks ago, I have not lost any weight. Not according to the scale anyway. I still have 12 lbs to go. Buuuut.... I can now wear my pre-pregnancy jeans! It's been almost exactly 4 months since having Lilleigh (4 month update to come), and I admit that I was starting to think this moment would never come. But it did! Just like people said it would.

    I actually had just recently decided I was going to return the Gap 1969 jeans that I got for free in the fall. I figured I'd get a pair of in-between jeans. So I tried them on before going to the mall - just to give myself a ballpark size that I should start trying jeans on in. And voila! They fit over my thighs... and then my butt... and then they zipped! I couldn't believe it!

    So no, I have not lost any more weight. But my old jeans magically fit again! Yea! Those 12 lbs will come off. I'm not worried. I'm just thrilled to have pants that fit again! I guess those jumping jacks are paying off!!

    Tuesday, June 7, 2011


    I know what you're thinking... Traveling AGAIN! What are they thinking doing so much traveling with an infant? I had this same thought last Thursday morning before we boarded our plane - well, planeS - to San Diego. We've done more traveling in the last month than we've done in the past year... maybe two! Lilleigh is only four months only, but she has been on EIGHT planes!

    The occasion for such insanity? One of my good friends from college got married! In Irvine. That's reason enough to go. But it helps that Hubby's aunt and uncle also live in San Diego. Plus we had air miles my dad had gifted us a couple Christmases ago. ...All the signs were pointing to GO! So we went. And we had a blast!

    After the lack of naps (and thus, down time for Mommy) on our last trip, I was a little worried for this one. So in preparation for California, and after learning from our Colorado trip, I gave Lilleigh plenty of practice napping in her crib! She's been used to napping in her swing. (When a baby takes 3 - sometimes 4 - hour long naps in their swing, you let them swing!) It was actually convenient timing because pretty soon after our return from Colorado, Lil actually stopped napping as long in her swing and started actually sleeping for around an hour per nap in her crib, as opposed to 20 minutes, which is what she had been doing. So the transition was pretty natural. And now she'll actually nap for a couple of hours (if I'm lucky) in her crib! But I digress... my point was that I was preparing her for California by having her nap in her crib. And it paid off! She napped well while in Cali!

    Not only did my baby nap well, but she slept well! I fed her each afternoon at 4 PM and put her in bed at 5 PM... crazy, right? I didn't bother changing her from Texas time. That just seemed unnecessary to me. I was prepared to get up with her at 4 AM to feed her and then try put her down again to get her to sleep until at least 5:30 AM. But guess what? My babe slept until 6:45 AM Cali time! That's 8:45 AM Texas time!! Yes, that's a whopping 14 hours of sleep! Has she done this since we returned? No. But now that I know she can, I just added "Hang dark curtains in Lilleigh's room" on my Honey Do list!

    Needless to say, Lilleigh sleeping well greatly enhanced my enjoyment of the trip! We met up with friends, spent time with Brendon's aunt, uncle, and cousin, hung out on the beach, and attended the wedding. And a noteworthy mention - Lilleigh had quite the blow out! Blow out aside, if California wasn't so gosh darn expensive, I'd totally move there! Brendon's aunt and uncle practically have an orchard in their backyard! Oranges, cuties, lemons, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries. I want that. I am already planning our next trip to Cali!

    Photos of our trip...

    Us with the bride and groom at the beach party on Thursday night

    Lil's first time at the beach

    Lilleigh got to meet my sweet friend Courtney!

    Kiss sandwich!
    Lilleigh's first "dip" in the ocean. Funny that it was the Pacific and not the Gulf...

    Uncle Al found part of a lobster.
    Us with the Dudley at the wedding
    The Phelpses' first dance
    As you can see, we had an awesome time in California! But I am glad to be home. I'm exhausted! While this trip was a success, I am happy to say that it's our last big trip for awhile. I'm looking forward to a summer at home!