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Archive for the ‘things we’ve done’ Category

I made it

Phew!  I made it!

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I joined a relay team for the Baltimore Marathon shortly after Evie was born. I needed something on my calendar to get me out and running again.  A team relay meant I couldnt flake (which i totally would have done if no one else was counting on me).  My friend, Amanda, found 2 other moms in the area looking to create a 4-person team.  I had Leg 3, a 6.7 mile uphill climb!  But I F-ing rocked it – by Amy standards, that is.

I also feel that this marks the end of Evie’s ‘infanthood’.  I feel that we made it through her first few months of being teeny-tiny – and now we just have 2 kids. I think I have said once before – if there is one thing I hate more than being pregnant – its newborns.  Man-oh-man the first few months are rough.  I was so, so, so lucky to have a generous maternity leave.  Combined with an awesome nanny who helped my transition back to work go smoothly. We made it through relatively unscathed. I’m happy to be on the other side now. I’m getting back to my old self – and our family is feeling stable.  As stable as a 4-month old and 2-year old can be!!

Granted, we’ve had to re-adjust expectations over the past few months.  I used to want family time, work time, amy time, husband time, catch-up on sleep time, and some let-loose time in every weekend.  But, alas, I would sit down sunday night feeling deprived of a few of those things.  It cant all be done!  So I’ve tried to prioritize one or 2 of those things each weekend – switching off – so that im not fully depleted in any one area over the course of a month.  Law of averages, baby!  Last week, Phil and I randomly got a babysitter Sunday afternoon so that we could go watch the Colts game together.  This weekend I ran in my race. Tomorrow I hope to go to the B&O railroad museum with the kiddos.  I’m going to be low on work hours this week  – and it will have to be a priority next weekend.  I cant do it all.  But I’m hoping over time, it will all work out.

As I look through all the pictures I chose to include, its hard to think its not working out.  We’re happy, we’re healthy, we’re doing our best:

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Maternity leave over

Phil is working on the post about Em’s wedding.  In the mean time, I’m jumping ahead to our trip to Indiana.  My maternity leave ended the day we got back from the wedding, but we also needed to make one more trip back to Indiana for BJ’s wedding and bachelor party.  I wasnt about to watch both kids by myself AND catch up on 12 weeks of work while Phil was gallivanting around in the woods with his friends, so we decided to drive to btown for 10 days to take advantage of all the free childcare and I could hunker-down and work.  We also managed to fit in some gnarly dental appointments!  (Thanks Dad!)

In typical fashion, we did our best to split time between grandparents.  I didnt care who had the kids, as long as it wasnt me!  Evie was pretty happy anywhere – but Wil usually needs quite a lot of entertainment to stay happy. Busia and Mimi were up to the task!  They had lots of activities for him throughout the week!  Here were some of the adventures at the Watkins, including Wil and Evie’s first IU football game! Andrew and Jessie came down for the occasion –

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We also had tons of fun at the Wozniaks!  We fit in a few visits with the stumpners, bungers, and freemans along the way.  Evie got to meet her new friend Addison!  Our last day was capped off by BJ’s wedding!  It was so fun seeing so many good friends!

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The kids did great in the car both ways.  Driving through the night is definitely the way to go with us.  Wil wakes up at gas/Evie/food stops, but we put on some netflix for 20 minutes while we are stopped – he watches like a zombie and then usually passes out as soon as we’re back on the highway.  After 3 weddings this summer and traveling with an infant under 3 months – we are definitely staying put until Christmas!

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We were all over the place in August.  We stayed busy in Baltimore going to the zoo and an Os game.  Then flew to Telluride, CO for Em’s wedding.  Then drove to Indiana for 10 days for BJ’s bachelor party and wedding!  I will devote a better post to our travels.  But for the mean time, here are lots (!!) of snap-shots from early August:

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Awhile ago I started working on a similarities/differences list of Evie and Wil as babies.  I keep saying I want to add more, but never do!  So I figured I’ll get it out now before it becomes completely outdated.

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Sleeping Only sleep on our chest or his stomach.  Would only sleep on his back for short stretches.  Loved being swaddled. Hates the swaddle.  Sleeps on her back with her legs stretched out and arms above her head.  Hates being on her stomach.
Tummy Time Great at tummy time.  Great neck control.  Could look up and around without any trouble Hates it.  Can barely get her head off the ground and usually just rests her forehead on the ground and cries until we get her…but shes getting better!
Pacifier Never got into it. Loves it!  Great soothing device when things get a little hectic.
Diapers Screamed bloody murder the second he had a dirty diaper.  Then would scream his way through the actual diaper change. Doesnt fuss about it and loves having her diaper changed.  I get the most smiles during diaper changes.
Bottles Was pretty good with both bottle and nursing.  Occasionally went on bottle strikes which were very long for me. Wil also went through a lot of burp cloths a day due to spitting up frequently. Basically all bottles except during night.  Doesn’t seem to have a preference. Despite some very impressive burps, Evie hardly spits up.
Baths Did not enjoy them. But was in the baby bath early on.  Has learned to love them. Does not enjoy them.  We still haven’t given her a proper bath.  All sponge baths around here, due to her gassy nature.

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Here is another quick picture dump.  Phil is officially furloughed every Friday  until October.  His first day ‘off’ started on his birthday. Unfortunately – we celebrated that day by taking both kids to their routine doctors appointments. It was a 2+ hour ordeal. It was pretty miserable.  Wil hates the doctor and they both got shots.  Wil even had a grown-up blood draw. Hopefully we’ll never have to go back, ever.  Once that was finally over with – we headed to Chap’s Pit Beef for Phil’s birthday dinner.  Its in the parking lot of a strip club, haha.  I felt pretty seedy pulling in (especially with my children) – but hot damn, they make a good beef sandwich!!  We came home and opened some presents and had cake.  I think Wil had fun handing daddy the presents – and Phil was nice enough to let Wil blow out the candles. It was fun having the back-to-back birthday so it helped re-enforce the idea of a ‘birthday’ to Wil.  Other than the doctors and birthday – we’ve just been lying low! We went to the science museum one weekend and we try to make it to the park here and there.  Evie is starting to smile more and more – I can even make it happen now!  Her favorite thing right now is when I blow lightly in her face.  Hey – whatever works!

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**Warning – Monster post.  Skim if you’d like**

I thought it would be fun to track my day to see how vastly different it is from my last ‘Routine’ post.

2:10am – Evie wakes up.  Time to nurse, burp, change diaper, and put back down.  We’re both back asleep by around 2:50.

4:45- Phil gets up and  takes barney on a walk/run around the park, showers, makes his smoothie, and gets ready for the day.

6:00 – Evie wakes up.  Phil scoops her up and does a quick diaper, then gets me up to nurse.  Evie goes back down by 6:30 – I get up for the day and put on a work-out video.  5 minutes in and I’m already dying.  9 months of pregnancy killed my ab muscles.  Phil leaves for work and I hop in the shower.  Evie stirs around 7:15, I change and nurse her real quick.  She falls back asleep, then I head downstairs to unload the dishwasher and get Wil’s breakfast ready.

7:30 – Wilek is up! We come downstairs, turn on some Mickey, do a diaper, eat some oatmeal, play with some cars, and hang out.  I mess around on the computer, pump, boil/sterilize bottles for the day, and eat the rest of Wil’s oatmeal.  We’re just about to turn-off the TV and pull out the trains when Evie wakes up.  I turn Mickey back on.  I grab Evie from upstairs – do a diaper, give a bottle,  and put her in her bouncer – shes not thrilled about it.

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9:00 – TV off.  Wil and I color, listen to some Raffi, have a diaper change, sit on the potty, feed Barney, watch the street cleaners go by.  Evie continue to fuss, so I change her and give the rest of the bottle. While I feed Evie, Wil always wants to sit right next to me.  Today, he played with the lights and found a block in the couch cushions which kept him busy for awhile (score!). Overall, its a successful feeding considering there was no Mickey).  I take Evie upstairs to nap.

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10:00 – Wil and I get back to coloring and have a snack. He eats about 90 percent of his cantaloupe before having a major meltdown and DOES NOT want anymore. OOOOOokay?  I grab some more coffee.  He finally settles down and we brush our teeth.  Wil climbs up on Phil’s computer and plays around.  I pump again, hoping he’ll stay happy playing on the computer.  For awhile hes fine, just tapping on random keys – then all of a sudden he actually gets things to start happening – a video even starts playing?  I hurry up and finish.  When I get over to the computer – it is asking me if I want to permanently delete a file with the word ‘set-up’ in it.  Ummm, no I dont.  I get Wil outta there and hes not happy about it.  Another major meltdown.  Im thinking he’s still hungry.  So we break out the crackers and peanut butter.  I start prepping the diaper bag.

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10:45 – I wake a sleeping baby!  Just long enough to transfer her to the car-seat.  Luckily, she goes right back asleep.  We do a quick Wil diaper change and we are out the door to the Library story time.

11:00 – Arrive at story time. I somehow dont think to bring a stroller.  So I’m carrying Evie in the car-seat in one hand and Wil doesnt feel like walking – so I have him on the other hip.  Amateur hour.  Always remember the stroller!   But Evie remains asleep, and Wil and I get to hang out, sing songs, and listen to stories with other kids for awhile.

11:30 – Evie wakes up hungry.  I have to get her out of the car-seat and give her a bottle.  Wil is okay with this for 5 minutes and keeps himself entertained by taking my shoes on and off, but then gets bored and starts to explore the room. I can watch him, but not reach him.  Hes fine for a bit – then finds an upright flag pole in the corner.  Before I could put Evie down and get to Wil – he, of course, topples the thing over.  I’m able to alert a mother who half-catches the pole before it hits her and her 3-year-old son.  It hits the little boy on the back and he starts crying.  I’m mortified and apologize profusely.  Within 5 minutes of the incidence I am OUTTA there! Not before checking on the little boy one more time, he seems ok, but I’m still shaking. Might not show my face there for a few weeks.  Car ride home is miserable.  Evie is screaming due to not finishing her bottle or being burped.  Wil was not ready to leave yet. Ugh.

11:45 – We’re home.  I throw on a Mickey, grab some food for Wil before finally rescuing Evie to finish the bottle.

12:03 – Evie diaper change.

12:07 – Evie diaper change.

12:15  – I’m able to get her happy right as Mickey is ending and Wil and I head upstairs for nap time.  Quick diaper change for Wil.  We read a story and I leave him on his floor bed for nap time.  PHEW! That was an intense hour.  I head back down stairs to hang out with Evie.  Shes wide awake and ready to play.  We practice some eye tracking, practice our squats, and look out the window and up at our AKT painting.  We could hear Wil banging around upstairs for awhile – but finally seems to go to sleep by 12:30.  Evie starts to tire as well and goes back to sleep by 1:00.

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1:00 – All is quiet!  This rarely happens.  I quickly take Barney out and feed him. Clean up dishes and bottles, pump, write a few quick emails, and fold some laundry.

2:00 – UPS rings the doorbell.  CHAOS ensues.  Barney goes nuts, starts barking and running around,  and wakes up Evie who starts crying. I get Barney in his cage, grab the package, scoop up Evie all in record time – and Wil stays asleep!  I change and feed Evie and put her upstairs to finish napping before getting Wilek’s afternoon snack ready.

2:30 – I get Wil up.  We come downstairs, watch a Mickey, eat our snack, change the diaper. Evie never really fell back asleep – so I grab her, change a diaper and bring her down stairs.  She immediately falls asleep in the bouncer but keeps getting startled awake by Wil, so I take her back upstairs.  This would be the perfect time for Wil and I to head outside to play with some chalk or bubbles, but its like 100 degrees.  So we stay inside, put on some music, and break out the legos.  The afternoon is pretty chill – Wil alternates between playing by himself and wanting my attention.  We do another diaper in there somewhere. Sometimes I can get a few things done during this time, like preparing dinner.  Luckily, I had made a dinner the day before, and it just needed to be popped in the oven.  Combined with Evie’s long nap – I had a lot of down time this afternoon!

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Picture from another day – but this is often how i find him, haha

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5:00 – Phil is home!!  Another rarity. With all this crazy government furlough business, they are tightening down on hours and making sure no one is working over the allotted time.  Fine by me!  Phil had put in his 8 hours and now hes home (Wish it was like this during non-furlough!!)  I get the oven pre-heated and dinner ready.  Phil plays with Wil and does another diaper. [This is also where I stop tracking bottle/diapers/times and stopped taking pictures…the rest is my best guess from the next morning!]

5:30 – Evie is finally up!  I change her diaper and give her a bottle.  Phil and Wil start dinner and we watch a little PTI while Wil plays with his toys.  Then I clean up dinner while the boys head outside for a bit.  I nurse and pump again.  Phil and Wil are back pretty quick.  Apparently Wil turned straight back toward home after only a short walk.  It was hot out there! I dont blame him! I decide its time for some impromptu chocolate chip cookies. I have the recipe memorized and always have the ingredients.  Its too easy!  A tough pregnancy habit to break.

7:00 – Bath Time!  Evie is first.  She screams bloody murder and has to go first or she’ll wake up Wilek.  I get her bathed, changed, and give her a bottle while Phil keeps Wil happy.  She starts to nod-off. Phil heads upstairs with Wil around 7:30 for his bedtime routine.  Once bath is over, I usually head upstairs and take-over for story and lullaby time, but Evie wakes up and fusses some more.  Phil is in charge of lullabies tonight.

8:00 – Wil is asleep. Evie is not.  I change her again and Phil tries another bottle while I try to write a few more emails. We talk about our days and my fall schedule once maternity leave is over, Evie is in and out of sleep depending on if she has her pacifier. I pump once last time and then head upstairs with Evie while Phil takes Barney out.

9:00 – I change Evie one last time and try to ‘top-her-off’ before bedtime.  I think she was finally asleep by 9:30-ish.  Phil and I were shortly behind her.   Around 1:30 am the next day – we started all over again!

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So lets see:  13 diapers for Evie, 8 for Wil;  1 major meltdown for Evie, 2 or 3 for Wil; 5 pumping sessions and a few nursing sessions; only 5 episodes of Mickey (thats really good for me these days!); and 1 full hour while they were both asleep! Other than the fact that we nearly impaled a small child at the library – I would call it a successful day!

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I would drive 1500 miles and I would drive 1500 more, just to see my little brother get married. (Benny and Joon anyone?) Seriously wouldnt have missed it for the world.  If I have any more kids, it’s because of pictures like this:

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Siblings are the best, arent they?!

We drove through the night Thursday and arrived Friday morning.  As horrible as 14 hours in the car with 2 kids is, my sister had it worse being stuck on a plane with 2 little ones as she got re-routed from chicago to st. louis amid a storm.  We finally all arrived at the rehearsal dinner Friday night.  As always, I was terrible about taking pictures, so most of these are swiped from facebook.  The wedding was absolutely stunning!!  My sister-in-law was freaking gorgeous and all the details of the wedding were flawless.  Check out that veil:

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Her grandmother made that thing!  Unbelievable!  We had a blast hanging out with all the family.  Busia and Dziadzia were there for the occasion and helped out with the kiddos. Along with Uncle Nick who got to meet Evie for the first time.  The only photo we have of the weekend was Wil looking dapper at the rehearsal dinner:

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On Sunday after the brunch, we were able to meet up with some of Phil’s chicago friends who we hadnt seen in nearly 3 years!  Of course, I dont have pictures of the friends themselves.  But we do have a few of Wil and his newest friend (betrothed) Alyssa:

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I unfortunately didnt catch any of Evie’s betrothed, Eli, but it was great getting to meet all these new little ones.  Thanks to Jared, Karen, and Jon for meeting up with us – we really miss you guys.  After we hung out on Sunday afternoon, we made the long drive home and made it back by early Monday.  All in all, it was a fabulous weekend. Congrats to Andrew and Jessie – such a wonderful celebration of all good things to come. Welcome to the fam!

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There is a lot ive wanted to write about lately  – but its all going to be thrown into one massive pictures/stories post.

Ive been trying to soak-up every last minute of my family of 3.  The weather has cooperated, which has allowed us to take numerous trips to playgrounds, parks, the zoo, and the harbor.  We have also had a day trip to rehoboth beach, DE  and a weekend trip to Philadelphia for my departmental retreat where Phil and Wil checked out the science museum.  Things are slowing down now as I get bigger and closer to my due date.  Most everything is ready for baby girl to arrive.  I just have to finish up things at work! (I joke that my form of ‘nesting’ has been cleaning and organizing all my work code – not cleaning the house.  I hired someone to do that.  I’ll stick to commenting and annotating my analyses.)

I waiver back and forth between anxiously awaiting our new addition and mourning the ‘loss’ of Wil as my only child.  Im so so happy to give him a sibling – but I know it’ll rock his world for a bit.  Wil has been such a happy boy, these last few months in particular, that Im sad to go and change everything on him.  Even his teachers at daycare have commented on how well he has been doing lately.  Not that Wil has ever been that troublesome.  I know Ive been lucky with a mostly happy boy.  But he has never been that great of an eater (meal times have always been a struggle)  and hes had some issues playing nice with others (he  was sent home with a few ‘incidence reports’ from daycare).  But over the last month – hes really turned a corner with his demeanor.   He is happy nearly all of the time.  I didnt know kids could be so delightful, haha.  Ive always been use to pacifying Wil – trying to guess at what hes fussing about or what he’ll actually eat or playing helicopter parent at play groups so he wont push or bite the other children.  But now, he eats without too much trouble, his teachers say he participates in circle time more (songs and interactive time), and he even gave his friend a hug as we were leaving the other day!

One thing that I think has really helped, is his vocabulary.  I think he really enjoys words and talking.  By far the funniest word in his vocabulary is ‘Mommy’ – which coming from him sounds like ‘Amy’.  He drops the first ‘M’ so its more of an ‘ommy’ which sounds enough like ‘Amy’ that everyone laughs when he starts yelling it and running at me.  We joke that we have a very formal relationship.  ‘Daddy’, on the other hand, comes out clear as a bell.  Weve been working on colors and counting, but those are taking some work.  Currently when you ask what color something is, his only response is ‘yellow’.  EVERYTHING is yellow.  Until you correct him and then he’ll repeated after you.  But initially, its yellow.  He also loves to growl.  This started as we were learning animal sounds, but now he likes to growl and grunt randomly as hes playing and walking around.  He sounds possessed half of the time. Good thing its 2013, or someone would have given this kid an exorcism already.   He also growls when he shows you his muscles.  When I go to change his clothes, or if he sees someone else without a shirt on, he growls and ‘flexes’ his muscles.  Its so adorable.  I hope we have a video of it.  Hes starting to put a few words together in strings. Usually ‘more’ followed by whatever he wants. He also enjoys singing.  Usually just ‘LA LA LA’ – but he has taken to singing the new kids on the block with daddy at nighttime.  Phil starts singing ‘Oh oh oh oh oh – the right stuff’ and he will start singing along.

Wil still sleeps in his crib at night – but naps on a cot at daycare during the day.  So far he has not fought the crib or tried to climb out.  We are planning to get a floor mattress soon for him to get use to sleeping outside the crib at home since we will want to use the crib for the new baby after a few months.  We are slowly starting the potty training process, but he hasnt taken much interest yet.  He initially was terrified of sitting on the toilet, but after a few m&m rewards, the potty doesnt seem so bad. But he still doesnt really get the concept of using it for intended purposes.  We now have a small toddler potty downstairs that he gladly goes and sits on and then requests his m&m reward, haha.  (M-M?!) So now we need to start enforcing actually using the potty for the reward.

Wil is a very active boy and loves to run around.  He is not scared of stepping up or down off of things anymore, which is scary for us!  He still doesnt have the best judgment on what might be too far of a step down, but will just go for it.  Which has resulted in a few falls when Phil and I arent paying close enough attention.  He loves to go down the slide head first and then tries to climb back up.  He loves playing with water – either outside, or in the sink, or bathtime.  Whenever he has a ‘boo-boo’ we immediately go and rinse it in water in the sink and its immediately all better.

Im sure there are other unique things about Wils development and habits that I dont have written down, but this will have to do for now.  Im curious to how the next kid will be different – and this little family blog is my best attempt at storing memories for the future.  As anxious as I am about the change, my mom says I will look back at all these pictures of ‘just Wil’ and see them as an incomplete story of our family.  He has had a good run as the only child! Hopefully we’ll all adjust to being a family of 4 soon enough.  I cant wait!

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