Wednesday, February 26, 2014

One month.

Somehow it has already been a month since you joined us in this world bright and early at 1:14 on a Saturday morning.  How that is even possible.. I will never know.


A few of your first month quirks...

.You blew out of newborn size diapers, quite literally.  So size 1 it is.

.Your newborn sleepers no longer fit.  You are just too long.  Of course this was about a week and a half after I added about 5 more sleepers to your rotation.  Smooth move mom.

.You still fit in some of your bigger newborn outfits, but for the most part you've started wearing 0-3 month clothing.

.You like to swing, bounce, have your butt patted.  If the car stops moving with you in it, you aren't a happy camper.  You also like to rock.

.You typically only cry if you are hungry, or your diaper is dirty.  You HATE wet diapers.  You don't have time for that.

.You fight sleep like a champ.  Especially between the hours of midnight and 3 am.  It's your witching hours.  I'm not sure why.  Dad hates it.  Especially cause you bring out this shrill shrieking scream thing.

.You are 100% a daddy's girl, as I expected you would be.  When he holds you.. you latch onto his face with your eyes and just stare.  You never grow tired of him.  Ever.  And somehow he can always calm you down.  (Unless it is during the witching hours.)

.You have met your grandparents on both side of the family.  Your great-grandparents on Daddy's side.  Your Aunt Courtney, Uncle Daylen and Stella.  Plus countless local friends.

.You virtually met your Aunt Erin.

.You have developed to die for arm and leg rolls.  Maybe cause you like to eat every two hours, almost on the dot.  I can keep track of time based on your belly.  (Your grandpa Ritter used to say the same thing about momma's belly... you can always tell what time of day it is based on if mommy is hungry or not.)

.You love to be held.  Hate to be put down.

.You haven't had much of a reaction to your brother yet.  His kisses make you scrunch your face up.  No tears.  As for him, he's not a huge fan of your crying.  Not that any of the rest of us are.  But he leaves the room if he can.

.You get the hiccups at least once a day, just like you did when momma was pregnant with you.

.You have been to the beach already.  Among countless other places you most certainly will not remember.

One month already... time is just flying.  I always thought that was so cliche.  But seriously... it's insane.  Slow down baby girl.  I know I am.  I'm going to spend each day rocking you, staring at your face, loving and remembering every single minute of our time together while you grow up.  Always.



always,
amanda
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Monday, February 24, 2014

His 24th.

Every year I hit on how close my birthday is to my husbands.  Just three short days separate our special days.  Every year I hit on how thankful I am for my husband and all he does for me.  Every year I celebrate him and only him, for one entire day.

This year is the same, but yet so different.  This year I saw my husband in an entirely different light.  I saw him as more than a fur dad... I saw him as a dad to our baby.  I watched him experience a wide range of emotions when she was welcomed into this world.  I've watched him grow into his role as her protector and provider.  I see his face light up daily when she connects with him.  And boy does she connect.  I hear him brag about how she is his favorite (and I'm starting to believe it... girl LOVES her dad.)

This new side of my husband has made me fall so much further into love with him.  It is amazing how such a sweet little girl came in and rocked our world just enough.. in such a good way.

Happy birthday to my husband, my best friend, my baby daddy, my soulmate!  I hope today and everyday is one you treasure and enjoy.  All my love, always.


always,
amanda
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Friday, February 21, 2014

Hi, 24.

Today is my 24th birthday.

To celebrate... 24 things I've learned in the last year:

1. It doesn't matter how many people you know in a relatively new state, complete strangers can make a birthday one to remember.

2. Laughter heals.

3. Just because you own a boat, does not mean you will use it during the summer like you should.

4. Sometimes one test is not enough.  Sometimes four tests are needed.  Of which three different brands are used, just to be sure.  And even then... a blood test is sometimes needed to erase the disbelief.

5. Being pregnant is not an awesome glowing experience.  It actually kind of sucks.

6. Dealing with the suck of pregnancy is so very worth it when the nine months finally ends.

7. Sometimes you have to make decisions for your family that quite literally tear you apart.  But when you make those decisions with someone you love and trust, it is a little easier.

8. Time heals all pain, but doesn't erase all the memories.

9. It is super easy to plan a nursery design.  It is not as easy to make that design become reality.

10. I thought I slept a lot being a stay-at-home-wife.  Then I got pregnant.  I didn't know I could sleep so much and STILL feel tired.

11. Bananas make me want to hurl.  Still.  The thought, the smell, seeing them.

12. Nothing compares to baby and puppy cuddles.  Nothing.

13. Baby stuff is expensive.  I heard it for years, but never believed it until I walked through Buy Buy Baby.

14. It doesn't matter where you live, the weather can ALWAYS surprise you.

15. New cars are so worth it. They make you feel grown up. (Especially when you sign 50 million documents before getting the keys!!)

16. I've always under estimated my body and its abilities.  After 25 hours of labor and giving birth to an 8 pound, 4 ounce baby... I will never under estimate it again.

17. My husband likes chocolate.  Prior to this last year, he hated it.

18. Surprises are so worth it, no matter how small or how big.

19. Family is the greatest gift God can give you.  I've been blessed with not only my family, but Rob's family and now my own family.  It is so easy to take them for granted, but I'm learning just how blessed and grateful I am for them.

20. A person can never vacuum enough.  Especially when there is a dog involved.

21. Writing thank yous is such a simple gesture that goes a long ways.

22. Being a mother is hard. But rewarding.

23. Being a wife is hard. But rewarding.

24. The greatest thing I learned this last year?  That I was pregnant.  Hands down meeting my baby girl topped everything else from the last year.

On to 24...
February 24, 2013 - 23rd birthday celebration.
February 14, 2014 - 8 days shy of 24.


always,
amanda
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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Tuesday Sweet Nothings.


Hey it's okay...

...that the husband went back to work today.  Grace and I handled it like champs.  She slept almost all day and I varied between cleaning, cuddling and watching some of my favorite reality crap on the DVR.  After almost a month off, I think it was great for all of us to get some space and start settling into a new routine.

...to experience your first earthquake and aftershock at 23.  I live in the state of Georgia and can't say I really expected to feel a 4.1 magnitude earthquake Valentine's night... or any night while living in this state.  But I live roughly 40 minutes from the epicenter in Edgefield, South Carolina and while I didn't know what the rumbling was initially (I freaked out, can't help it)... I now know we experienced our first earthquake.  We being Grace and I.  (The 3.2 magnitude aftershock was felt heard Sunday afternoon.)

...to check that my sweet girls chest is rising and falling while she sleeps.  I'm sure that is a new mom thing.

...that I just finished the baby announcements... one week shy of her being here for one month.  I wanted to get them done sooner.. and while they still aren't "done".. they are closer.  Now to just print, address and mail.

...that the USPS raised the price of stamps to almost 50 cents.  Does anyone else find that absurd??!  I get you are broke... but whatevs... it's okay, I will forgive because I love mail.

...to wish I was in Kansas.  One of my best friends is about 5 weeks shy of her due date and bedridden.  I so wish I were closer so that I could keep her company.  Oh and then baby love could go over to Grandma and Grandpa's whenever.  The military life.

...to find it crazy to be raising a military child.  My sweet girl will experience more in her young life than most young children do.  For it she will be stronger and hopefully more confident in her life decisions.  I only hope I can instill in her all of the best values while still relocating every 3ish years, and spending time away from Daddy and the rest of family.

...to be kind of mad at DeVry.  I've waited for over six months for them to announce the summer graduation date in Atlanta (closest university).  Six months... you read that right.  I've never heard of a college not announcing graduation dates until February for a summer graduation.  Tonight I got the dates... it's at the end of July!  They've been telling me the end of June!  What the what DeVry... awesome.  Crossing fingers and toes my parents will be able to make it.

Linking up with Amber from Airing My Dirty Laundry for Hey It's Okay Tuesday.

Airing My Dirty Laundry



always,
amanda
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Thursday, February 13, 2014

A Very Icy Valentine's Day.


On Monday I was excited for Valentine's Day... our first with the baby!  The holiday takes on a whole new meaning when it's your first holiday with a baby!

Then Wednesday hit like a bat out of hell.  It sleeted, rained, snowed.. heck we even had thunder and lightening.  Our beautiful pine trees on the back of our property and along our master bedroom side of the house took a massive and I mean massive beating as the ice weighed them down.  We spent the majority of the day listening to branches snap left and right.

By 11:30 that night we were counting our lucky stars.  We were among the few that still had power and we had not quite lost any major tree limbs, or entire trees.

Of course that luck ran out at 11:45.  We lost power and had our first major tree snap across our backyard.  We hunkered down in our spare bedroom (no trees on that side of the house) and weathered the storm - quite literally.  Our house went from 78 degrees to 56 by morning.  Just chilly enough to worry about our sweet little girl.  Even though I felt like she was holding heat pretty good... she's still only 3 weeks old.

So we loaded up in the truck and went out.  I'm not kidding y'all, it looks like a war zone out there.  The stores were packed.  We got a few necessities and grabbed some lunch.

By the time we got home 4 hours later, the power was back on.  Someone was watching out for us.  I'm not sure we would be able to get through another night in the house if the power would have stayed out.

Our Valentine's Day will be spent in the warmth, with some of my favorite people.  I will dress Grace up in her "my first Valentine's Day" onesie, and I will be reminded of all the love we have experienced in the last 3 weeks.

I truly hope wherever you are... you are in the warmth, and out of harms way with those that you love.

Happy Valentine's Day friends!



always,
amanda
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Monday, February 10, 2014

Currently.

For lack of better blogging ideas.. I'm using the prompts from A Mama Collective after seeing them over on Chambanachik's blog.


So. Currently->

Thinking about: How lucky/blessed/grateful I am for my life, my husband, my baby, my dog.  My parents, my sister, my in-laws, my best friends.  Sometimes it takes a huge life event to help you realize just how fortunate you are.. but dang'nabit... life is so precious and I am so fortunate to be where I am, even if I'm sleepless and still a bit sore.

Reading: Other than blogs, not a whole lot lately.  Hopefully I get back into my groove after the husband goes back to work, but right now?  Right now I'm still learning and mastering this whole being a mama deal.  It takes time, and I'm okay with that.

Listening to: The TV.  The dog snore across my lap.  My husband play Flappy Birds (so. freaking. annoying.).  The baby breathe sweetly in her sleep next to me.  The heater go.  And the keys click as I type out some extra energy for this here post.

Watching: At this very moment?  Intelligence.  Other things on my DVR? The Following, NCIS, NCISLA, Criminal Minds, Real Housewives of Atlanta, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Vanderpump Rules, Party Down South, Welcome to Myrtle Manor, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, Duck Dynasty... yeah, we watch a lot of TV.  Which has been just fine because all we've done lately is watch TV when we aren't entertaining family.  Judge me.. it's okay.

Thankful for: this baby.  I'm thankful every single day for the precious little bundle God blessed Rob, Piston and I with.  She is the splitting image of her dad, with her momma's attitude and the sweetest little personality ever.  It is so cliche.. but the amount of love I have for her is absurd.. I didn't even know it was possible to love someone as much as I do this little girl.  And she's only been here for 2 weeks!!

A Mama Collective

We are in the recovery phase from the second wave of family here to visit the baby.  Rob's parents left this morning to head back to Missouri after visiting with us for five days.  It was a very busy five days showing them around the area and even roadtripping to the beach for a day trip.  Needless to say we spent the whole day laying around and I can't say that tomorrow will not be the same.  


always,
amanda
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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Dirty Diapers, Warrant Officer School and Surprise Family Visits

So now that my life primarily consists of little bit's schedule.. to include-dirty diapers, breastfeeding, sleeping, fussing, calming and cuddling.. life has slowed down just a tiny bit.

Randomness forthcoming->

Not that I'm complaining or anything... but I'm STILL working on mastering changing the baby.  She likes to cry and fuss like there is no tomorrow, then continue to do her business mid diaper change on the changing pad.  Someday she will hate that I put that out there.. but I've spent way too much time cleaning up dirty clothes, a dirty changing table, way too many wipes and multiple dirty diapers.  Something has got to give.

Also, how is it possible that such a little being can have such perfect timing?  The minute I get ready to do something I am needed for a feeding.  I'm finding myself sitting around waiting for her to wake up so that I can feed her and then tackle my to do list after she's done.  Like now.  Pretty sure I was warned about this.

We got dates for Rob's warrant officer schooling.  All I can say is someone up above is listening.  Rob doesn't leave for his 5 week schooling at Fort Rucker until August.  Which gives me plenty of time to adjust to baby girl and being a mommy.  Also super convenient because we get to go home for my sister's college graduation in May and Rob will be here for me to walk for my graduation in Atlanta in June.  Three cheers for all that winning-ness.

I'm feeling oodles better.  I'm still a wee bit sore, but that is probably to be expected with an 8 pounder.  My body has bounced back pretty nicely.  Obviously I'm still overly jiggly... but I've already shed all of the weight gained during my pregnancy.  Not that I'm bragging or anything.. as there is still PLENTY to shed.

Yesterday we got a surprise phone call from my in-laws.  They have been talking about coming down here but had not gotten any dates together yet.  Well surprise!! They are on their way.  They decided to leave Missouri in the middle of a snow storm, so they will arrive at some point later today.  Good news for baby Grace as I am sure she will be held up until they leave on Sunday.  Spoiled rotten.

And with that the baby is awakening... thus I am being called.  Mom life.

always,
amanda
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Monday, February 3, 2014

The first week.


She's one week old.  We survived?  We made it?  We got through?  Not sure how to sum it up.

It's surreal.  I can't believe she has been here for a week.  I can't even remember a time without her now.  It seems like she has been here for so long.

I don't know how to sum up the week because honestly it wasn't too terrible.  **knock HARD on wood**  Sure there were moments where my emotions were OUT of this world.  There were moments when the baby woke up in the night and just couldn't go back to sleep.  There were moments where the pain from giving birth was absurd.

But when I look back I don't feel tired, stressed, unprepared.  I was blessed to have my parents here in Georgia for a week.  My mom helped by cooking for us and doing our laundry for a week.  Both my mom and my dad helped with Piston.  Plus grandparents make the absolute best baby holders and my daughter was not going to fight that.  They held her late a few nights so that Rob and I could rest.

They left this morning.  I'm sad, not going to lie.  It would be so nice to have my parents near us.  But unfortunately we have chosen the military life, which will often take us far away from our support system.

We are lucky nonetheless.  Grace is a beautiful baby.  In the last week, we figured out the breast feeding thing.  We learned she does not like wet diapers, at all.  We've both been peed on while changing a diaper.  We've cuddled.  She's enjoyed her swing.  We went to a restaurant for the first time.  We got out of the house on three other occasions with baby.  She sleeps well and hard.  She's spent time alert and awake staring at her surroundings.  She even has good head control.  She's gotten a sponge bath.  She's adjusted.

And Piston?  Was meant to be a big brother.  She cries? He runs.  He gives her the softest little kisses.  When he is away from her for any amount of time.. he runs to find her and check on her.  I don't know what I expected with him... I knew he'd adjust well, he is hands down the most easy going dog.. ever.  But I guess I didn't realize he would adjust so easily and well.

So back to summing up the first week?  We've soaked up every last second... and I thank God for this sweet little girl... there really are no other words.

written Saturday February first.


always,
amanda
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