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happy 11, vivi girl

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You are such a perfect fitting piece of your daddy and I’s life.  We love to go places with you and Linc in tow all the time.  One, because it’s so fun to do new things with you.  And two, we want to show you off to the whole world.  A lady we passed at the Arts Festival this past weekend put it perfectly when she said “you’re so lucky!”  Except I know that we aren’t really lucky…we’re blessed.  Because God knew exactly what He was doing when He created you.  He knew that every little part of you would be just the perfect complement to our family.  He knew that you crinkly eyes and your toothy smile would complete us.  We love you so so much.

-from mama’s letter to you

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What you weigh – 14 lbs. 11 ounces

What you eat – You only nurse 4 times a day now, for five minutes each time, although I still pump once late at night so you can have milk in your oatmeal in the morning.  You’re also eating 3 meals a day.  Your eating is pretty much the same as last month – as in you aren’t too into it.  You could really take food or leave most meals.  You have gotten really good at eating pieces of diced fruit – you like pears, apples and especially peaches.  Another new favorite this month is cauliflower – I pureed it with a little bit of butter, and you eat it up!  Other than that, everything is pretty much hit or miss.

How you sleep – We’ve moved your bedtime up a little bit, so most of the time you go to sleep around 7:15…if we’re on time that is!  You sleep until 7 or 7:30, and then you usually lay in your crib and talk and play until around 8.  We are so blessed to have such a great sleeper!  You also take two daytime naps, usually from about 10am until 11 or 11:30 and then again from about 2 until 3 or 3:30.  Occassionally you’ll sleep a shorter or longer time.  You still like to be swaddled with both arms out, and now you have a little square lovey that I made you, and you love to hold it or put it over your face while you sleep.  It’s so sweet:)

What you wear – You are still wearing 3-6 month clothes now, although some dresses are still 0-3, which is crazy.  You are just barely able to wear a size one shoe…they’re a little big, but we make them work so you’ll have room to grow.  We just bought your first pair of sandals for summer, and they are precious on your tiny feet!

Diaper –  Bum Genius Freetime with two rows of snaps left open in the middle.

Favorite activities – laughing at mama and daddy when we make faces at you, reading books, swinging, playing peek-a-boo, playing with my earrings (and anyone else who is wearing any), taking baths, being tickled

Least favorite activities: having your face cleaned

Big moments in your eleventh month of life –  More teeth!  You now have four on top and three on the bottom!  Started crawling faster and more – you’re all over the place now!  Clapped for the first time, started mimicking – smacking your lips together when we do

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happy 11, baby linc!

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My absolute favorite time with you is when you snuggle up in my lap or in my arms and just let me hold you.  I can’t get close enough to you or enough kisses on your cheeks.  You are just such a sweet little boy, and it makes me giddy to know that you are my little boy.  God knew exactly what I needed when he blessed my life with you.  I’m the luckiest mama in the world.

-from mama’s letter to you

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What you weigh – 17 lbs. 4.5 ounces

What you eat
  – You are only nursing 4 times a day now…I hardly know what to do with myself! Ha!  You basically eat about every four hours on average now, usually around 8am, 12pm, 4pm and 7:30 before bed.  You only nurse for about 5 minutes each time, though, so I feel like we barely spend anytime nursing now!  I guess compared to how long you used to spend it is barely any time.  You are also still eating your 3 meals of course.  I’ve gotten a little more adventurous in what I make you, and you love pretty much every new meal.  Your favorite now is a roasted red pepper and goat cheese puree.  I also made you a mild Indian dish and you loved it too!  It’s fun to see you try new things, especially when you end up liking them!  I’ve also been trying to get you to practice with finger foods, but you just aren’t that interested in feeding yourself.  You’d much rather me put a spoonful in your mouth….probably because you can eat more, faster that way!  You definitely love to eat!

How you sleep –  Pretty much nothing has changed since your 10 month update.  You still take two naps – from about 10-11:30 and 2-3:30, sometimes shorter, sometimes a little longer.  You wake up about 7:30 or 8, we change your diaper and nurse, and then eat oatmeal with fruit.  Then you play for an hour and a half or so before going down for your first nap.  After napping, you nurse again, then eat lunch before some more playtime.  You then have your second nap, and after that is your loooong stretch of being awake.  We usually go outside, go run errands, or do something fun like go to the park.  Daddy gets home around 5:30, and we eat dinner soon after.  Around 6:45 or 7 we start your bath and then nurse and go to bed around 7:30.  I love the schedule you’re on now!  It’s so easy, and we have plenty of time to have fun when you’re awake!

What you wear – You’re wearing 6-9 month or 6-12 month clothes, depending on sizing.  You’re still in your same shoes, size 1 (Converse) or 2 (Tom’s) but they’re starting to get awfully tight!  I just ordered you a three in sandals to wear on your birthday.

Diaper – Bum Genius Freetime with 2 snaps left open in the middle.  We now put a Hemp insert in overnight and during your morning nap so that your diaper doesn’t leak.

Favorite activities – Pulling up and standing, cruising around the couch…or whatever you can get your hands on, playing peek-a-boo, bathtime, eating, being tickled

Least favorite activities – having your face cleaned, sitting still, we’ve found you’re afraid of the vacuum and drive through car washes (because of the noise)

Big moments in your eleventh month of life – pulling up and walking around things, using your sippy cup (mostly) by yourself, first time to swing, first two teeth (on the bottom)

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two weeks later…

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     Two weeks ago today, I celebrated my very first Mother’s Day.  Even though I spent most of the day sick in bed, I still savored every moment from nursing Linc and Viv separately in the morning, spending just a little longer holding each of them in bed…to rocking them to sleep before laying them in their cribs that night.

I spent so many long days and months praying and hoping to become a mom.  I remember feeling the deepest desire to have a baby to love. Yet even that longing didn’t prepare me for how it would feel to love my babies.  The love I feel is oftentimes overwhelming because I just don’t feel like I have the capacity to be what they deserve in a mama.  It’s like I can’t possibly show them how much love my heart has for them. I’m slowly learning that I can spend every day trying to convey to them through my words and actions what a treasure they are…but I also have to give them up to the Lord every single day because I truly don’t have the capacity to be what they need on my own.

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I try at times to control everything in life in an effort to protect them.  I feel so vulnerable having them out in the world, at risk of something bad happening to them.  It’s terrifying, and if I allow myself to dwell on it, it can be crippling to me.  For several weeks now, I have felt pushed in different ways to leave Linc and Viv in the nursery at church, but I’ve avoided it every time because I just don’t trust anyone.  I feel this crazy intense need to be with them every moment so that I can protect them from any harm that might come their way.  But I know that I have to begin to let them go in some ways.  Baby steps.  So I left them Sunday morning.   With tears filling my eyes I walked away and prayed myself through the service to stay strong.  And when I went back I found Vivian crying, tears running down her face as she lay in the nursery bed.  And it tore my heart to pieces.  I felt like I had deserted her with strangers.  And to think that she might have wondered if I was coming back was almost more than I could handle.

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I had written this post in my head two Saturdays ago, knowing just what I would say about how on Mother’s Day I took a necessary step of every mother – letting her babies go just a little bit – and how it worked out just fine and how I celebrated later.  Instead I feel like I’ve been set back about ten steps.  Honestly, I’m dreading taking them to the nursery again.  But I know I will.  And I know it will be fine.  I guess this is still all part of this journey of motherhood.  Learning to love my babies with open hands, holding them up to the Father and trusting that He’s protecting them and that He has a distinct plan for their lives.

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I also celebrated my own mother from afar last week.  We were with Jon’s mom for the weekend, but I did get to meet up with mom and spend a few minutes with her.  Celebrating her came from a new perspective for me this year.  I’ve always appreciated and thanked her for everything she gave up for me and all the ways she took care of me as a little girl and as I’ve grown.  But this year I, for the first time, understood the complexity and depth of love she has had for me.  The kind of love that keeps you up at night, hoping and praying your babies are safe and okay.  The kind of love that consumes you because you literally feel like your heart is walking around outside your body.  And I’m so grateful to have been loved with that kind of love.  What a special and unique thing being a mother is.  It’s incomparable to anything else, and I feel so blessed to have that kind of love from my own mother and to be able to pour out that kind of love to my sweet babies.  It’s the best thing in the world.

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Throughout the day my thoughts also kept drifiting to all the women out there waiting to be a mother.  I remember like it was yesterday the emptiness that comes from not being able to fill the desire for a baby.  That pain is something one cannot forget.  Now that I’m on the other side of it, it only brings more intensity to the gratefulness I feel everyday to be able to touch my babies faces and kiss their heads.  I think about it often…in the hard times when I’m exhausted and I’ve changed a million diapers and I just want to lay down and go to sleep…it jolts me back to reality and showers me with patience, understanding and a full heart.  I wouldn’t wish infertility on anyone.  But in the end I can honestly say the journey we had to walk to have our Linc and Viv has only made life that much sweeter now that we’re on the other side.  So for those women I pray for peace, comfort and hope.

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crazy days

What a crazy day it was over here!  So many changes happening with these little babies…I can hardy keep up!

Sissy finally decided she’s tired of sitting around watching Bubba explore everything.  She’s been able to crawl for about a week now, but she just didn’t quite have the motivation to do it much.  But today she really took off!  All those people that stop me on the street and say “you’ve got your hands full” – they are finally speaking truth!  Nothing cuter than our tiny girl army crawling from one end of the house to the other:)

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In other news, we had to lower Linc’s crib mattress today.  I laid him down for his morning nap, and he had a little trouble getting settled in.  I heard him cry, so I picked up the monitor, only to see him standing up at the side of his crib!  It took a split second for me to get over how freaking cute he looked, and then I raced in to make sure he didn’t fall out on his head.

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The days are getting busier now that everyone is on the move…but at the same time they’re getting more and more fun.  I love seeing them learn new things; the look of surprise on their faces when they do something new is priceless.  The days go by so fast, and I don’t even have time to think about being tired.  But by the time night comes and everyone is finally in bed, I’m ready to collapse.  Nevermind all the chores and work that still   need to be done.

No one ever said having one baby was easy, much less having two.  But those two have my heart and everything is so worth it!  Even when the dog bowls get dumped for the millionth time;)

Mama loves you, Linc and Viv!!

Oh, and just because I cannot get enough of him in this oversized baseball cap:

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baby boy is 10 months

You are just such a busy little man.  I have come to cherish the moments when I get to cuddle you – like when you’ve just woken from your nap or when it’s time to go to bed.  Sometimes at night I sneak into the nursery and snatch you out of bed just so I can hold you close and breathe you in.  Every other moment of the day you are climbing all over me or trying to escape so you can go explore!

- from mama’s letter to you

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What you weigh – Apparently your weight chart got up and walked off the countertop…but I will find it, I will!

What you eat  – You’re still nursing the same amount minus the dream feed.  Although you’ve stretched out your schedule to be about 4 hours between feedings now, which means your before bed nursing is only about an hour and a half after your dinner feeding.  So, I think we’ll probably be dropping one of those soon!  You’re still eating great!  We’re eating 3 meals a day now, and you take it very seriously!    Some new foods we’ve tried this month are chickpeas, black beans, split peas, cottage cheese, peaches, mango, quinoa, and several others.  I think you’ve gotten a little more picky this month, and I’m finding it kind of hard to keep giving you variety.  You would eat cottage cheese and sweet potatoes for every meal if I’d let you!  Although, the last few weeks we’ve had a problem with you throwing up.  We haven’t been able to really connect it to anything specific, although my latest theory is that maybe it’s dairy?  You don’t always throw up after dairy, but it seems that every time you’ve thrown up cottage cheese was one of the foods you’d just had.  I’m not sure, but I hate it when it happens.  You throw up quite a bit, and I know it makes you feel bad.  But usually within minutes you’re back to yourself again, laughing and trying to crawl away.  We took you to the doctor and she said it may just be that you are a boy who will throw up randomly.  I really hope that’s not true, for your sake and mine!:)

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Of course, you also love to eat the remote….among other things.

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How you sleep –  You are an amazing little sleeper!  We just dropped your third nap, so now you take a morning nap from about 9:45 to about 11 or 11:30.  Then you take another one from about 2-3:30.  Since we dropped the third nap, we moved your bedtime up about 30 minutes, so now we start baths about 7ish, and you go to bed around 7:30.  Most mornings you sleep in until about 7:30 or 7:45.   Sometimes I think you might even sleep longer if your sister didn’t wake you up!  You’re still sleeping on your tummy, thumb in mouth and a light blanket on your back.

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What you wear – You’re now wearing 6-9 month clothes, and sometimes I feel like you’re even outgrowing those!  All of your shoes are starting to seem small too, but technically you’re still in a size 2.

Diaper – Bum Genius Freetime with 2 snaps left open in the middle.  We now put a hemp insert in overnight and during your morning nap so that your diaper doesn’t leak.

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Favorite activities –Crawling!! (army crawling that is), exploring the house, getting into Olive’s food and water bowls, playing with the door stop, getting into the fireplace and tea light stand, eating, standing up (with assistance), taking your bath, being tickled, reading books, laughing, singing “if you’re happy and you know it”

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Least favorite activities – having your face cleaned, sitting still, we’ve found you’re afraid of the vacuum and drive through car washes (because of the noise)

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Big moments in your tenth month of life – started crawling!,  stopped taking your third nap, started pulling up, started eating 3 meals

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