Thursday, August 28, 2008

These are a few of my favorite things

I'll start by letting all of my 2 readers know that my goal now that I'm back to work is to try and post at least once a week. Truly, this is a selfish aim because I really started this blog as a modern day scrapbook for Riley in the hopes that it will still be around when she's old enough to know about it and hopefully appreciate it. Not that I fault my parents, but I wish that they remembered more about me and the things that we did in the first year of my life and so this is a gift that I want to give my Riley.

Like my dear friend Lindsley and her mover and shaker Zaden, I can hardly believe that Riley is inching ever closer to that one year mark. She's doing so many new things lately and I find myself in stitches everyday enjoying her discovery of the world. These are just a few of my favorite things that she's doing lately.

* Her bottom two teeth are through and grow "taller" everyday, I miss my baby gummy smiles, but she seems just so proud of those two little teeth and thankfully she hasn't bitten me yet! I promise to post a picture as soon as I have a good one, it's been tricky trying to capture it so far.

*She laughs so much these days, really big belly rumbling laughs. She LOVES having her armpits tickled and she laughs so hard I can't help but laugh along with her.

*She is creeping and oh so close to crawling. She can get up on all fours from a sitting position and push forward, but hasn't quite mastered the coordination yet. She LOVES playing with Duke and squeals with delight when they have tummy time together and he playfully "growls" at her.

*She definitely knows her Mommy and Daddy and can locate one of us and then burst into smiles if we ask her, "Where's Daddy?" She reaches for us and although she doesn't let me snuggle her like I used to she's started nuzzling my neck and still snuggles me when it's bedtime at night.

*She LOVES bathtime and tries to wiggle herself out of my arms as soon as she sees the water pouring into the tub. I am teaching her to splash and I don't mind that she gets water everywhere because she enjoys it so much.

*She loves the water sprayer in the sink and I'll spray it for her and sing "it's raining, it's pouring" which she finds extremely amusing.

*The face she makes when she is really studying something and finds it fascinating, it's an eyebrow raise and a half smirk which I am trying desperately to capture on video.

I never knew before now, but watching your child experience and enjoy life's simplest things for the first time is an amazing experience.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Happy 7 Months

We can't believe it's been 7 months since the birth of our baby girl

Our prayers were answered when we had you. Happy Birthday Princess. We love you.

We're Going To Make It After All

This week was in one word...EXHAUSTING. It all started Tuesday when the sense of dread started to trickle in. I've known all summer long this moment was coming, but lived in blissful denial. All day I could feel the worry of sending Riley off to daycare eating at me and by night I was a complete basket case. My mind raced with thoughts of what if, what if, what if... It took 30 minutes on the phone with my mother to convince me that she would be okay and that I would have to stick with it. I still slept horribly and Riley did too as if she could sense my level of stress.

Wednesday morning came too quickly and I dragged my feet as much as I could trying to avoid that moment when I would have to hand her off to a technical stranger and trust that God led us in the right direction with the daycare that we chose. Let's just say I sobbed, Riley looked confused and Matt quickly spun me out of the door and whisked me into the car before I could throw a tantrum on the floor and refuse to leave her. The day went quickly, but every second my mind went to her consumed with wondering whether or not she was okay. Everyone assured me that it's only hard on me which I went along with to make the day easier on myself. At 2:30 on the dot I dragged Matt out of work to pick her up only to learn that Riley did have a bit of a anxiety and fear during the day.

I felt so guilty and I couldn't scoop her up fast enough to hug and squeeze and smother her in kisses all over her little face. And then as if God knew I was contemplating working nights to pay the bills so she'd never have to go back, Riley burst into the biggest series of giggles, laughs and shrieks of delight that we've ever seen. She carried on for minutes grabbing our faces and throwing her little head back. It was incredible and I felt that it was almost as if she was saying to us, "I knew you'd be back for me."

I'm happy to report that her next two days were easier and much happier for her as she became more familiar with her new surroundings and friends. She still shrieks and squeals as soon as we walk through the door and sees us and the rest of our day together is amazing because she seems just so content to have us that nothing else seems worth fussing over. It was definitely one of the harder things we've had to do since she was born, but I think we're going to make it after all.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

I can hear the Countrytime Lemonade commercial now...

I assume most of you don't know what I'm talking about, but always right about this time Countrytime Lemonade would come out with a commercial playing a sad melody and lamenting the end of summer and sadly my friends, our summer has come to an end. It has been so much fun to be home with Riley and watch her discover and love the world around her. We didn't take a single second for granted and we are dreading the end of it. At the same time I have to admit that we are so looking forward to doing some of our favorite fall and winter activties with her.(Can you tell I'm trying to stay focused on the positive???)
We actually wrapped up our summer with Riley's first trip to the "First State" (Mommy's too) for her first wedding. :) It was a beyond gorgeous affair and we all had a wonderful time. Here's some of our favorite pics for you to enjoy!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

There's no place like home...

After clicking our ruby slippers, (braving DC morning rush hour, finding a parking spot in the "economy" lot, riding the shuttle with four bags, an infant and a boppy, and hopping a Midwest flight from Reagan) we arrived for Riley's first official trip to Kansas. She was technically there last summer, but the only sights she saw were inside my tummy. She was AMAZING on the plane, and slept most of the way in her carseat. I have to admit it helped that the flight was virtually empty and we got our own row! She slept most of the 2 1/2 hour flight and was up to smile and play for the last 30 minutes.
After a much needed diaper change that thankfully happened in the last 10 minutes of being on the plane, Aunt Tata met us at the gate and Riley was ready to explore! She played with Tata while her Daddy and I waited for the bags.

Leaving the airport we headed for the LV to meet up with Gammy and Gampy! For those of you who don't know, LV is most famous for...

We had a great week just visiting with the family. We did some shopping and ate out a lot! A highlight was Riley's first carousel ride at Oak Park Mall. I didn't really want to go on, but Gammy urged me to take her and I'm so glad that I did. She loved it and Daddy snapped some great pics!

Before we knew it, our trip was over and it was time to head back home. I swear time flies when I'm there and everytime I wish I could pack my family up to take back with me. We said goodbye to Gammy at her office and Gampy and Tata took us back to the airport.

Riley's second plane ride ever was not quite as smooth as the first. Apparently quite a bit more people are trying to get out of Kansas and over to the east coast (go figure)! Here's a pic that sums up our plane ride, shuttle back to the economy lot, and drive home through evening DC rush hour.

For more pics of our trip, you can check out her shutterfly page !

Monday, August 4, 2008

Riley's First Playdate

Riley had a special day! Zaden came over for her first playdate. Zaden is the son of one of my very good friends. She and I found out we were pregnant within a week of each other and Zaden was born 6 hours after Riley. We had such a good time playing together and Matt and I got a small glimpse of what it would be like if we had twins. One of us always had one or the other, and it made us want a boy someday even more. Here are some fun pictures of their "date"!

Zaden is definitely mobile and we had a blast watching him scoot around on the carpet. We were hoping Riley would learn from him.

Instead she got movement envy and tried to keep her man from leaving.

Look Mom, I'm reading!

This Sunday Riley decided to read the paper with her Daddy, she was very interested in the sale section on tires.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Best Friend Love That Still Flutters

Looks like love to me!

We've been married four years today! Matt surprised me with a much appreciated trip to the spa this morning. I believe that most new mothers would look at an hour long massage as a bonus nap time, but despite the soothing sounds of rainwater I couldn't help but take that time to reflect on our lives. So many things, good and bad, have happened to us in four years and when I look back on these events I realized that each time we grew a little closer and a little stronger in our love.

I heard on a show today, that I will not mention the name of because of it's embarassment factor, a girl say that married love is different. She said that it's not the first love where your heart flutters. She called it best friend love, a trusting love, where you know your heart is safe. I found myself agreeing because Matt is my best friend. He knows every story. He loves my quirks. He calms my worries. He always stands by me. HE IS THE WITNESS TO MY LIFE.

But then again, I found myself disagreeing because sometimes my heart still flutters. Like when his face lights up when he's doing something he really loves. Or when he surprises me with something and he's almost nervous about it. Or when we held our baby girl for the first time.

Even now as I'm writing this blog and I'm remembering all the little moments that only he and I have shared and I'm thinking of all the little moments still to come, there it is....a flutter.