Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Humpity Hump

Thanksgiving Eve, hey hey!
So here's what we've been up to since last week...
On Saturday we celebrated Thanksgiving with my mom's side of the family.  It was a gorgeous day and we enjoyed being outside and catching up with family we don't see so often.  I had the sweetest outfit on EB but girlfriend was not having our photo session.  She kept squirming and kicking off her boots but I still tried and this was the best we got:
Sunday we spent the morning catching up on some housework while baby napped and then we went downtown to Carolina Alehouse for lunch.  The weather was brisk but it was sunny on the rooftop and we all enjoyed the fresh air.  I loved the view of Calhoun Street from above.
On Monday I had a long awaited spa day over at The Woodhouse in Mount Pleasant.  The package was a gift from K last Christmas.  I had scheduled the appointment for around Valentine's Day but found out I was pregnant and decided to cancel and wait until I could fully enjoy it, champagne glass in hand.  And I did!  The spa is gorgeous and I was so grateful to my mom for watching my girl all day and letting me indulge before the holidays kick off.  Also, Thanks babe I loved it!
Yesterday I went to the County Park with Kristina and Baby Emma.  The Holiday Festival of Lights has already begun and we enjoyed strolling the babies around.
Yesterday was also K and I's second wedding anniversary.  We hope to enjoy a nice dinner out soon, but shared a champagne toast last night.  It's been an amazing year for us and the best is yet to come!
EB is chillin' in her swing right now.  I'm about to get her up so we can hit the road and get started on some pre-Thanksgiving errands.  I'm sure it's going to be crazy out there!
I am really looking forward to being home for the holiday tomorrow.  K is smoking a turkey and I've got the rest covered.  I'll share pics soon!
I hope you have a wonderful holiday, there is so much to be thankful for!!!

Friday, November 18, 2016

Friday Highfive

I've got a sink full of dishes and 2 baskets of (clean!) laundry to take care of, but I'm letting it go because baby girl is napping and momma wants to catch up!
So how is everything going with you?
I am doing pretty good, adjusting to the new normal and getting excited about the holidays.
Last night I got FIVE hours of uninterrupted sleep.  
So...Here's a highfive for that!
Last Saturday I had my first social day out since having EB, for my bestie Chels' baby shower!
Isabella will be here end of December and it was a lot of fun to celebrate!
Not gonna lie, it took me an hour or so to get in my social groove, I've been in newborn mode for 6 weeks.
I am getting our Christmas Cards ordered this weekend.
We are using a photo from the Bella Baby session that we had the day after EB was born.
I wasn't expecting much from these photos but we ended up loving and purchasing the package.
Here's one of my favorites, me and my girl. 10/4/16:
New mom essential: Microwave Sterilizer.
I want to do an entire post of "Fourth Trimester Must Haves".
We have a rehearsal dinner to attend in a couple of weeks and I am about to head out to try and find something to wear.  I may stop into Bashful after seeing Holy City Chic post about this dress:
Baby is crying so can only give ya 4 today!!
Have a great weekend!

Monday, November 7, 2016

Our Weekend

What a lovely chilly weekend!
We are happily cozied up inside on this brisk morning.  Here's a selfie for ya: 

I hope that y'all had a good weekend.  Ours was nice.  Still getting into the hang of things and we stuck close to home.  On Friday night I pulled out a pan of the stuffed shells that I made before having the baby.  I wasn't sure how they would turn out but they were really tasty!  I opened a bag salad and warmed a few frozen garlic knots to round out the meal.  Easy peasy.
I attempted to enjoy a bonfire in our backyard, but early evening is a very unpredictable time in our daughter's day so the majority of my night was spent tending to her.   But it was still nice to finally enjoy our fire pit!
On Saturday I brought EB over to my parents house for a couple of hours so I could run over to TJMaxx and try and find some clothes that fit my "right now" body.  Here is a picture I snapped of my brother holding her.  She was cracking us all up because she would be snoozing, eyes closed, and then pop open her eyes, smile, and immediately fall back asleep.
We had a delicious dinner on Saturday night.  K grilled our favorite cedar plank salmon and we paired it with mushroom tortellini and asparagus, both farmers market finds. 
More food!  Cinnamon rolls for Sunday breakfast. 
So it's obvious I'm not really watching what I eat right now, and combine that with my body after baby, I needed to pick up a few new things this weekend that I can wear right now.  I snapped this after Sunday dinner at my in-laws (EB got to meet her great grandparents!) and realized that I had a burp cloth draped over my shoulder, which means it must have been there through dinner and our drive home...perfect accessory for my "new mom" look I've got going:  
There you have it!  
It was an especially late and tiring night last night due to daylight savings but I'm hopeful we'll all adjust soon.
Hope y'all have a good week.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

First Month Reflections

Hello out there!
I am poking my head out from our baby bubble and wanted to catch up a bit.
Big news: Our daughter is one month old today!  This is truly a celebration... we survived our first month as a family of three and wow, what a month it was!
I wanted to talk a little bit about my postpartum experience and share some photos.

Physical Recovery
I have written out a "birth story" but I'm unsure about publishing here.  It's filled with so many mundane details that I won't even pretend to think anyone else but K and I would care about.  But I'm still considering sharing it...Stay tuned.  Anyway, in a nut shell EB's birth was fairly "standard". I did push for 2 hours though.  A couple of things of note that no one had ever mentioned to me:  The epidural can bring on full body shakes.  The whole "afterbirth" part is the grossest thing I've ever experienced.  The first time you try to use the restroom after a vaginal delivery you may feel like you are going to die.  Once home, I felt like I healed relatively quickly.  I relied on our retractable showerhead a lot when bathing.  One terrible side effect for me was a diaper rash of sorts, as I was wearing the hospital issued pads basically around the clock.  Not a fun thing to deal with on top of a newborn.   I will have my 6 week follow up next Monday, hoping for a good report.  

The past month has proven to me that I have never, ever even scratched the surface of true sleep deprivation until now.  I have been operating on an average of 6 broken hours a day which, quite frankly, isn't terrible for newborn life.  I knew I would be tired, but I had no way to know what that would really feel like until experiencing it.  I think we are all so accustomed to getting through a difficult day and being able to crash at night...But having a baby is a never ending 24 hour loop.  Day/Night?  Baby don't care!  In my case, due to breastfeeding and pumping, I have lived on a 2 hour stopwatch:  diaper change, feed, pump, repeat.  Hello, exhaustion.  

I went into breastfeeding with the attitude that I would give it my best shot.  I have no qualms about using formula (I was raised on it myself) but I wanted to atleast try for breastmilk, for the health benefits and also to save some money.  I have heard nothing but struggle stories regarding breastfeeding and I'm here to report: The struggle is real! First for me, it was all about nipple pain.  For the first 2 weeks of EB's life, I nursed on demand using a nipple shield (due to flat nipples).  The pain was so intense- but I had resolved to stick it out through the two week mark, as I'd heard that it only got better from there.  Well, I made it to two weeks and it simply wasn't getting better.  I was holding so much tension in my upper body every time she fed.  One night she pulled off my breast with blood dripping down her chin.  It was so unsettling that right then and there I decided I would be pumping and bottle feeding my breastmilk.  I also want to mention that another factor in my final decision to pump exclusively was due to her not gaining weight very well during her second week and wanting to measure out the ounces.  I met with a lactation consultant to help me with building my supply and ensuring she got enough.  For anyone in Charleston, I would be happy to send you her information, she was great!  I am very happy with my decision and thrilled that, for her first month of life, she has received nothing but my milk.  I am proud of myself and will be sticking with it as long as it works. One day at a time, y'all.

Emotional State
Hmmm, How can I put into words my state of mind over the last month?  It's hard because this whole experience has given new definition to "emotional rollercoaster" for me.  I have become completely connected to this tiny little lady.  It is an overwhelming love, a tremendous responsibility, and unlike anything I've ever known or could imagine.  Hormones were raging the first two weeks and I found myself showering twice daily just so I could be alone and cry.  The tears were not of sadness or happiness but pure hormonal emotion.  I would find myself looking at her crying while thinking "I miss her!"  So yea, it doesn't make any sense and you are basically a big mess.  As a first time mother, I had no idea how much I would question my every move.  I should screenshot my google history so you can get a real vision of what I mean.  I found this piece and it's comments particularly encouraging around week 2.  This first month was absolutely the most challenging time of my life but it's getting better every day and baby girl is really starting to get a little sparkle in her eye, which makes it all worth it one hundred times over.
Ok so now on to the fun part, some pictures!  I initially had 15 photos in this post but narrowed it down to a few faves.   
First family photo:
Home before the hurricane: Daddy's mini me:
 EB's first bath, she seems to really like them.
Happy Halloween from me and my squirmy girl!  And my massive pumpkin. 
 West Ashley Farmer's Market!  This was our first real outing as a family, we had dinner at the Mellow Mushroom afterwards and she slept (like a baby!) the entire time:
And one last snap of our first baby who is adjusting quite well to the new addition:
 I am going to try to get back into a groove of posting our weekly happenings.
These days are precious and I want to do my best to keep a record of them!
Hope you are all well :)