new look...

We have a new look here now - I updated our template here (same template just a newer version) and was able to move things around a bit- the photo links make much more sense now don't you think???

Unfortunately I also had to give up our web counter, which at last count was 5300+ hits. I installed a new one, but BOOOOOOO...

Enjoy

First Knot/Nest Entry

A blog by nature seems self-indulgent and even a bit showy doesn't it?
"Here, follow this link and read all about MY life, MY baby's life, and MY personal thoughts."

Steve, Caroline (then known as Cash) and I began our blog shortly after announcing our pregnancy last summer. We had just relocated to another state where we were virtually alone and found ourselves staring at the walls, each other, and often the TV (John Stossel and 20/20 was, and who are we kidding STILL is, a real highlight) on Friday nights. It was a time that we will always recall as both exciting and petrifying. I remember our first dinner after our move at what has become a favorite little spot. We drew all over the paper table cloth and I couldn't even correctly draw the shape of the state we now live in. Those first months required sacrifice on both of our parts, but made room for a reconnection we did not expect and we watched our relationship grow and change along with the little pumpkin in my belly.

And so we (read- ME) began the chronicle of our pregnancy and Cash/Caroline's journey into this world. It was as much about sharing this special time as it was about keeping the connection to the world we had left behind.

Yesterday Kiki (my mother-in-law) called and asked if I had considered how this blog helps the family and friends back at home maintain their connectedness to us and to an ever growing and changing Caroline. I had not and suddenly something that had before seemed as so self-focused began to look more like one of those tin can radios that kids make; The sender happy to send the message, the receiver equally happy to be able to collect it, the receiver becomes the sendee and the sendee the happy receiver glad to know that the message was not only sent but overjoyed at the return message. That is what this little blog has become…

At last check people from all throughout the complicated web of our life read this blog or even just come on once in awhile to look at the latest and greatest photos on display. Who are you and where do you come from?

our parents, sisters, brother, aunts, uncles, cousins, high school friends, college friends, post-college friends, grad school friends, our friends' significant others, friends of friends, parents of friends, colleagues both current and past, colleagues of our parents, colleagues of our friends, colleagues of those colleagues, the beanies and so on and so on

If photos are not uploaded in a timely manner Auntie C lets us have it! My mother's friends Karen checks up on this site every so often and then updates my not so tech saavy mother (sorry Mom!) on what is new. My girlfriends send me notes about how big Caroline is getting, what incredible parents we are becoming (thanks!!!) and notes of support for those not so good times too (almost more important than the kudos). A good friend's mother sent a sweet note about her own journey into labor in light of our rapidly approaching due date. My old colleagues in Boston frequently send notes about funny entries which are usually funnier that the entries themselves. The beanies- can't leave them out – a community of women created during a time when we were all getting married and now it seems we are all having children. These women were, through the wonders of the internet, right there throughout the entire pregnancy especially two other beanies due within 2 weeks of Caroline. (we were due first and delivered last –go figure) These women utilized the blog to break the news to the rest of the beanie world that we were parents, who then overwhelmed us with replies of support and congratulations and I have only met a few of these women in real life.

What does all this mean?

A blog doesn't have to be self-indulgant nor showy. A blog be a place to maintain family and friendships in an ever speedy world, especially a crazy and busy world with a new baby. Don't know what we have been up to? Why haven't you been reading the blog? What do you mean you haven't seen photos of our little monkey? Don't you read the blog? What are we up to this weekend – ummmm the BLOG PEOPLE… Not that the blog should be stand alone for maintaining relationships, but it can certainly tide you over during the crazier times.

We don't feel forgotten down here – and I know that for me anyway – a big part of that is because we have this blog and because somehow strangely people actually read it. The notes, the comments, the counter that continually clicks away at the bottom… they are all reassurances that we are still important in the lives of the people we are now far away from and that despite the distance between us – we can still go home, even if only virtually.

Buzzkill

Name the bigger buzzkill...

The one month montage
Not that we are techno wizards or anything, but we can't get it to work the way we want after spending hours on it this weekend and even when we sent it on CD to our parents via MAIL they STILL cannot view it. I will post two versions below - one that is clear but lacks the audio and one that is blurry but has the music. In the future I guess we just won't be able to include the music because that makes the file not work for you tube or for CD. WHO KNOWS WHY??? It is infuriating!!!

OR

The Vomitorium with not a quarter in sight for the washing machine
I had a perfect little baby falling asleep on me after her morning feeding - she slept through the night AGAIN!!! - when she suddenly booted big time on me, the sheets, and my pillow, not to mention herself. I calmly changed her, burped her, rubbed her little back and put her in her swing, attended to the bedroom stripping the bed and making plans to bring it to the laundry when it opens at 8am only to discover that we used all our quarters the other day on a load of Caroline's laundry. The bank opens at 9am and I now have a sleeping baby that I will need to relocate to her carseat in order to faciliate the trip... lovely...

Here's the video anyway...

Caroline with audio - but blurry
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gMwWeB2C16U




Caroline without audio,with camera operator narration - but clear

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5WzwUHBG3-U

Time in a bottle

Some catch-ups...

Sunday
We drove up to the other part of the state to visit with the "social work girls," Rob, and Miss Emma who is nearly a year old!?!? It was so nice to reconnect with the ladies and to see how much Emma has grown up. Marybeth and Rob are unbelievable parents! They also expect to be moving upstairs by summer. Steve and I know that the house has been an incredible endeavor for the Kerrs and the work, time, and energy was certainly worth it - their home is wonderful, warm, and ALMOST DONE!

Monday
After trying to get out of the house for a few hours, only to be interrupted by a hungry AGAIN Caroline, Ashley called to check in. Of course I couldn't get to the phone, but her message stated that she might or might not be busy. I crossed my fingers and phoned her back and I hope my desperation did not come through too much =) Caroline and I picked her up about 10 minutes later and I left her with the baby while I ran to the grocery store. It was a high frequency day for the little miss, who wanted to eat nearly every hour. We got through it and finally got her to dreamland.

Tuesday
Caroline was having a much better day and actually slept on and off most of the morning. We met Steve at his office and went to lunch at P-A-N-E-R-A (I just want to eat at Panera, with lettuce and tomato, a pickle and some mayo- PAAAANNNEERRRRAA - yes this is a song I wrote to sing to Steve when I want to go to you guessed it P-A-N-E-R-A =) She was rough for the afternoon, but after her last meal of the day at 7:30 we put her down and after only a couple rides in the swing and some shhhing she slept ALL NIGHT until about 5:30!!!!! THANK YOU CAROLINE!!!!

Today
We have our Moms group at noon. She is back in her crib and I am dreading waking her up, but we won't be missing this group... It is the one thing each week that I refuse to miss. =) I have some questions about her eating that I want to ask the facilitator Lisa and plus we like to see all the other babies, especially Ryan and Jen...

I am attempting to figure out what my big post on the 31st of March for the Nest will be about and I am torn in about a trillion directions. I posted a couple things already just to give it some substance - the origins of McCashew if you will and some photos of her at a few days and then at one month old... I realized while I was posting those that in just a few days I will be setting up her official 2 month shot. Time is flying by, but she is getting more and more fun each day. The little babbling baby talk is great and I find myself talking right back at her. Anyone know what Agooo means? No coaxing is required anymore to get a glimpse of her gummy little grin. In fact sometimes if you aren't looking at her, but she is looking at you, when you make eye contact with her again she smiles. I love that one! Yesterday in the nice weather we spent some time on the back deck looking at the world and feeling the warm breeze (and listened to the traffic on 95). She was so interested, overwhelmed certainlu, but interested and I couldn't help noticing that I too was taking more notice of the details around our deck; the curvy branch of the tree, the uneveness of the walking path, the way the breeze blew our hair... So this is what people mean when they say that having children makes them see the whole world through their baby's eyes? If so... it is wonderful.

On a wierd and somewhat personal note I have been experiencing a little nervousness lately about life and death and all that gloom and doom. I have never been a fan of the fact that life must end - funny coming from a girl who used to work in hospice right? - in fact I think it is the thing in life - ha! - that I am most afraid of (more than snakes or heights even!). Lately though this fear is heightened and I think it is because I know that someday I will not be here and my baby Caroline will not have a mother and that her life will go on and I will miss it. Isn't that sad? So no, I haven't had an ounce of post-partum anything, but I am thinking quite a bit about life. I am pushing myself to use this new heightened awareness of my own mortality as a way to remind myself that time is precious and that given that my time here is limited that I need to find ways to make the moments count and to freeze those special memories not just in my mind, but in Caroline's as well.

Keeping up with the Joneses or in this case the Noonans

We have been taking video of our little one since her birth - literally since about 10 minutes after she was born - and we have not yet gotten it together enough to download any of it to our computer and share with all of Caroline's adoring fans.

As luck would have it the Noonans are fast at work on a blog for their son Danny and when Steve saw that they had embedded videos of their son directly into the blog, well he demanded that make video editing a priority because he enjoyed watching their videos so much.

So we are keeping up with the Noonans - or trying to -

Here is our first video upload brought to you via youtube. This is just this past week during one of many smile sessions. We must have 30 minutes of footage trying to capture this gummy grin, but we FINALLY captured it for all to see. Enjoy!!!! As time allows I am also fast at work creating a movie montage of her first month. (video editing is fun!!!)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TtPkM1tZWGA

or


McCashew is moving - well sort of...



REESE RETURNED EARLY YESTERDAY MORNING THANKS TO OUR WONDERFUL NEXT DOOR NEIGHBOR. She spent most of the day sleeping and bathing and I doubt she will be taking any more exploration adventures any time soon. =)

First the important stuff...

Caroline and I each had our 6 week check-ups this week. Caroline is now 9 lbs 6.5 oz and 22 1/4 inches long. She is about 50% in all areas for growth and the doctor was so pleased with her overall growth and development. YAY!!! She had her second Hep B vaccine and another immunization as well, which she was NOT all that pleased about. We waited for what felt like hours for the nurse to come back to adminster the vaccines, in reality it was more like 20 ish minutes, but in those 20 minutes she got hungry and the shots just added more stress on her. Poor thing. Steve hadn't been able to come when she got her first Hep B so he had not yet seen the purple face not breathing cry yet, it is soo soooo sooooooo sad! Caroline handles it ok though and only cries until we pick her up after the shots. We'll go back in about a month for her next check-up. I had my post-partum check-up this morning and my doctor cleared me for exercise and feels that I have healed well. I won't have to go back until late summer as an added bonus! =)

We had our first "Abandon Ship" day today at Trader Joe's. I was happily choosing delicious items for our cart and Caroline was awake but content, when out of nowhere she burst into song, I mean Scream or should I say SCREECH. My gut reaction was to look around as if to say to the world - who's baby is THAT? - but that clearly wasn't going to work because all eyes were on me and those eyes also had their eyebrows raised for sure. I tried to console her with her pacifier and rocking the carriage, and shhhing her, but all my attempts were met with discontent and one angry red-faced and likely hungry baby. Did I mention she is in her 6 week growth spurt? Oh it's WONDERFUL. She wants to eat allll the time and sometimes it feels like "hey didn't we just spend 30 minutes doing this 30 minutes ago?" So after trying all my tricks and realizing that those eyes were still on me and now instead of eyebrow raises I was getting a mixed bag of unsympathetic and been there faces. If there had been more been there faces and if I truly had the patience and strength to wait in line with her howling I wouldn't have had to do the unthinkable... I abandoned my carriage right in the middle of the trail mix section and didn't look back. She cried the whole way home, but we had some lunch (both of us) and she is now happily swinging. (sidebar - we use the swing so much we have to oil the swingbars which are squeaking louder than the sound effects!) So much for Trader Joe's... We might be ambitious and try to get to BJs and UHAUL in a bit. We'll see... I don't think I can abandon ship more than once a day - there must be a rule somewhere about that?!

TGIF!!! We are all excited for our trip up to the Kerrs on Sunday to spend some time with the "BC social work girls." I am really looking forward to it!

The other news is that I have been selected as a baby blogger for The Nest's new Nest Baby site! Holy Crap!!! The launch is March 31st and we will be featured over there with the other Baby Blogging Moms. The reason I say McCashew is relocating sort of is because while I don't intend to stop posting here, I will be posting the same or similar updates over there. So we are KIND of moving in that you can find entries in both locations. They will feature a few bloggers on their front page everyday. I am so excited about this opportunity!!!! I have a ton of work to do now creating a profile, photo albums, and writing the all important first entry. Wish us luck in our newest pursuit!

Press Pause Please

Caroline slept through the night again last night! She is not yet sleeping through consistently, but it is only a matter of time before that midnight meal is phased out completely. I am of course PUMPED that she is getting closer and closer to that and my body will certainly be quite thankful for a period of uninterrupted sleep, but once that nighttime snack is gone will I miss it? Would you think I am crazy if I said maybe just a little? I think I might be, but her sleeping through the night is yet another little milestone almost within our grasp and just further proof that she is growing up and not such a newborn anymore - wah!

There are many items that we utilize on a day to day basis that I say I wish I had invented; the diaper genie (pure genius I tell you, a diaper pail that uses household garbage bags), the Swaddle Me blanket (like a little papoose as my mother would say), her baby bath tub (folds up for easy storage and yet has a comfy foamy layer to keep her cozy)... I could go on and on here. The item I am most in need of though, the one that I wish someone would just invent already please is a pause button. I would even take a slo-mo button at this point. The days are just passing so quickly and she has her SIX WEEK check up tomorrow!?!?!? Where is the time going???? I find myself struggling to even remember those first few days and even to remember how her little just born body felt in my arms...

Caroline is definitely awakening to the world around her and looking around all the time now. She still cannot see all that far, but she is very interested in her activity mat and her black and white book. Smiling is getting better and better each day. How exactly do you get a baby to sleep that keeps smiling at you and almost LAUGHING?!? It is hard to get down to the business of shhhing and rocking when this perfect little face keeps beaming up at you. Caroline smiled at Steve last night when he tried to coax her back to sleep around 11 and again this morning while he was changing her diaper before her breakfast. She is a tricky one! A master manipulator already!!! She knows the awesome power of her perfect little grin. I think my favorite this week though is the way she kicks her feet while she coos and smiles and interacts with us. It is sooo adorable...

In the midst of all this fun and excitement we are sad and worried about our feline familymember Reese. With all the crazy wind yesterday the front door blew open and in the span of what I gather must have been about an hour at most she decided to step out into the world and do some exploring. Caroline and I walked around the whole complex here looking for her. Steve and I drove around the complex and also to some neighboring areas calling her name out the window like morons. =) He was utterly convinced that she was gone. Just before bed he decided to make a last ditch effort to canvas the surrounds of our condo one last time because it was so cold and we feared she would freeze to death. With flashlight in hand he found her, sitting at our downstairs neighbor's back door and then she took off in a flash and was gone. So she was on her own last night and there is no sign of her yet this morning. Poor little kitty... come home soon ok?

AND some fantastic news that I hope they won't mind us sharing. Dan and Mary welcomed their son Daniel into the world on March 18th. He looks ADORABLE!!!! Congratulations to their family, what wonderful spectacular news. I just wish they weren't on the other side of the world - but maybe our kids will be friends despite the distance?

Caroline is waking up now - I walked by just a moment ago and her eyes are wide open staring up, at what I have no idea. It won't be long until she is looking for a mid morning snack and I need to properly pack her up for our Moms group at noon. We of course need oodles of time to decide on her outfit =)

a milestone reached...

What a busy fun weekend!


First, some brief updates which will explain the lack of posting since last week I hope.


Wednesday


Kiki and Poppa came in from MA for a business trip in Southern CT and we had another successful dinner outing to Archie Moore's without a single peep! Caroline slept from dinner straight through to 3:15 am when Steve was just waking up to make his flight to Orlando for the annual sales conference. It was so sad to watch them say goodbye...


Thursday


Kiki came to spend the day with us while Poppa went to meetings. We had such a nice day and I was able to have an amazing shower and pack up for the weekend without interruption, what a GIFT!


Thursday late night


Wouldn't you know it!?! For the third year in a row we get a monster winter storm while Steve is away at the sales conference. In light of the storm I altered my plans and left late Thursday night to go spend the weekend with my parents. As I packed the car in the pouring rain and ran back and forth from a crying baby to the car with more stuff I couldn't help but think about single parents. After that experience I have the utmost respect for single moms and dads everywhere, not that I didn't before, but HOLY CRAP --- how do they do it?!?! Once we got into the car she started to calm down and the rain changed to snow. We drove through some pretty rough weather that night, but once we got to Hartford it was smooth sailing. If I had not left when I did we might not have made it up to MA at all, so it was a good decision.


Friday


I chilled at my parents house and watched the snow with Caroline and monitored our NCAA brackets. Red Rose Pizza completed the evening.


Saturday


My mother's good friend Karen came over to meet Caroline. I know Karen checks up on this - so thanks for coming to meet her Karen! My father picked up both of Caroline Great Grandmothers and we enjoyed a laid back day topped off with a great corned beef and cabbage dinner. It was spectacular and so special to have four generations of both sides of our family together. Caroline was off and on fussy all day - and really did not take too many naps. She kept us up trying to get her dreamland from about 9pm to 2am when she finally FINALLY conked out.


Sunday


Another relaxed day with Nana and Granda watching the Holyoke Saint Patrick's Day Parade on TV and hanging out with Caroline - who thankfully napped. We were so thankful to be able to spend some quality time with Nana and Granda. It was strange spending the night in my old bedroom with my daughter, but in a good way if that makes sense. Nana and Granda loved every second of our time with them, even when she was screaming and crying they didn't seem to mind. Granda hardly bat an eye when she sneezed all over him either, truly a remarkable thing for those that know him =) It was an uneventful ride home and she went to sleep nice and easy for her mom who was totally exhausted from the previous couple nights.

And of course - the Milestone -

Steve came home today and we did indeed have a welcome home gift all ready for him. After getting some serious smile lessons from Kiki on Thursday she practiced hard all weekend and with some coaxing gave him a few stunning gummy little smiles and even added in some adorable cooing for good measure. We don't want him to go away for a long long time... not only because we missed him, but also because I am so utterly tired out after four days without his assistance.


Want to see that smile??? we are working on getting photos - but the camera distracts her. Here is the best of the bunch so far...


Babushka

Another one handed entry -

Steve (and myself to some extent) have taken to calling Caroline Babushka (pronounced babooshka). I think we both thought it was a way to say baby in another language? Who knows. Since its inception the nickname has spawned two variations - "Little Babushka" and my personal fav "The Babushk."

Imagine our shock and embarrasment when we looked it up and discovered courtesy of Wikipedia that this Russian word means grandmother, mother-in-law, or old lady. In English it can mean head scarf, elderly Russian woman, the Russian nesting doll, and that it is also a British song about feminist rage.

Knowing that our little nickname might be inappropriate for a baby has not slowed our everyday usage though, oh no, in fact we may use it even more now. One of the nurses declared just after birth that Caroline is an old soul and she really seems to be. Maybe the nickname is not so far off then? Maybe she really is at soul an elderly Russian woman??

Catch ups

We DID successfully make it to dinner on Friday night and even thought two cantankerous crones moved their seats out of fear that she would be a terror, she was perfect from hot wings to main course. I wanted to sneer at the women as we left, but figured they had gotten what was coming to them after a table full of children sat right down next to them and proceeded to race around screaming. The image still makes me smile.

The family got to make a quick visit to our new house for a paint estimate on Saturday. It was strange to walk through knowing we are moving in in just under 2 months. Notice the new ticker - crazy huh??? It was Caroline's first visit and we spared her the walk through of her new room which currently is painted Yankee Blue with all Yankee accesories. Yes, we are considering an exorcism of sorts to rid the home of its evil empire spirits.

Sunday we attempted a family stroll in downtown Westport, but Caroline had other plans in mind, namely being at home sleeping.

Yesterday despite my best intentions to take full advantage of the weather Caroline slept and slept and slept until almost 3 pm. We did go for a short walk downtown and I did make myself busy while she snoozed packing away any and all clothing she won't fit into until post move.

Today we are making a trip - hopefully - to my old office in Norwalk for her to meet my old coworkers. She has been up since 7:30, refuses to nap, and I have not yet showered. We are supposed to leave here at around 11:45. Forecast is stormy here and I am once again contemplating a shower with her, though in the span of this paragraph she has quieted down and is swinging happily. In the span of this entire post she has been on my knees, on my lap, on my shoulder, in the swing, in the papasan, and in all of these places on more than one occasion...

Steve leaves for his sales conference on Thursday and the forecast thankfully is for rain and not snow at present. THANK GOD!!!

The cries have resumed and motherhood calls... new pics posted suggest we have a perfect child, don't be fooled =)

Fine then, make a liar out of me...

Liar Liar Pants on Fire!!!

No sooner than I share Caroline's fussiness and voracious appetite with the world does she do a (semi) 180 on us.

She is still a little fussy, but much improved and her eating is back on target... just in time for the weekend...we are hoping to venture to dinner tonight WITH a content and/or sleeping baby.

This week has certainly been a challenge, but we got through it. Even when she screams I can't help but look at her and think to myself how beautiful she is and how fortunate we are to have this little person in our life... even at four am, even during dinner, even when it seems she will never stop crying... Steve always looks at her and says "you're beautiful or "hello beautiful girl." If we can keep telling her that do you think she might someday believe us??

Notes on a bellybutton

Prior to my pregnancy I would say that I sported an outie belly button, that was somewhat an inny. It had definite outie qualities as it was not just a mystery indent, but instead a perfectly rounded button. Yet this belly button was somewhat withdrawn into my stomach. During my pregancy this button was pushed outward by Miss Caroline until it resembled a turkey timer that had popped. When I laughed it made its presence even more known to the world. After she was born, it retreated back into my stomach. We won't even discuss the landscape of my once flat tummy, though that itself would be an interesting post, especially given that I have before and after photos... that I might MIGHT be brave enough to share. In October when my bellybutton really started to pop I noticed that the skin was ultra soft, probably because it had always been somewhat protected by being "semi-inny." Ask Kerry she touched it. Now after, my bellybutton is a much darker color and is not so soft - pretty dry in fact. I don't understand how that which was once so soft is now so dry. Perhaps it is a metaphor for the journey? or a reminder of what we have just experienced? or maybe just maybe I need to moisturize more.

Typing with one hand is getting tough. Enjoy the weekend!!!

Mayday Mayday - a Report from the Crying Zone

SOS... Send back up stat!!!

Caroline has had quite a stressful week thus far - today and Tuesday being the best days of the week.

On Monday when Brett visited she was tough - fussy and crying and generally pretty p.o.'d all day long. We tricked her into sleep when we took her out for lunch in the car - the most marvelous baby trick in existance, second only to the infant seat which keeps her so warm and cuddly and snuggled in that she will sleep and sleep and god bless her - SLEEP! So we went to lunch, did a little tour and she happily slept the rest of the afternoon away in her carrier. Brett had the magic touch later in the day when she was quite fussy and we threatened, I mean offered, to allow him to stay forever! =)

On Tuesday she was transformed. Just in time for our visit to the breastfeeding resources group she shaped up, morphed back into perfect angel and made it seem as though there were never any issues to begin with... as in "who is this crazy girl with a perfect baby who thinks that she has issues to figure out?"

Tuesday night - totally different story - she was ROUGH and that lasted all the way until late/early last night. All day Wednesday Caroline was a fussy fussy girl, hungry every hour at points, wanting to "eat" for at some points 45 minutes or an hour screaming in protest if I forced her to stop. Our girl who normally eats on average 7 times per day about 30 minutes per feeding ate a whopping 11 times in 24 hours and averages 45 minutes or more each time. The difference was staggering and quite difficult for her mother to cope with. I will admit that at one point I needed to sit in the bathroom with the shower running while Steve soothed her and I admit that openly because motherhood is tough sometimes and I don't want to sugarcoat it. There are points when even the calmest mother and even the most perfect baby need some time apart... just to breathe...

We even missed our Moms Group because she wanted to eat at three seperate times between 8:30 and 11:15. I contemplated showering WITH her when her crying peaked at about 10:30 because I was determined to get to group. I was standing in the bathroom opening shampoo bottle tops and thinking to myself that she needed a bath anyway... After it became clear at around 12:15 that we were not getting to Moms group - when I had just finished feeding her and found myself in my bathrobe, towel in hair, her still not dressed for the day, and not a packed diaper bag in sight - I resigned myself to plan some other outing for the day because any outing would entail the car seat and a ride which would put her in a semi comatose state for the duration of the afternoon. We went grocery shopping and she slept for 3 blissful hours.

She continued to want to eat most of the evening and even into the night, waking us 3 times to eat overnight if you include the 4:30 feeding, which I do because WHO in their right mind is up at that hour that isn't flying somewhere at 6 am???

Thankfully today has been better - she ate at 8:30 and 11:30 and appears to be getting back to the timing she had been on. My only explanation is that we fixed the "drowning" issue and my milk supply slowed down, which also means that I slowed the flow down, and this girl liked her meals on the quick side and is NOT impressed that Mommy worked hard to no longer choke her. I have a call out to the resource group to ask some questions, but once again when I extend my hand out for help she self corrects making me look like a looney toon. Perhaps all the breastfeeding info about supply etc is a bit much for the blog - but this is real life and this is what we are coping with now - so there it is...

Check out the new photos -

We hope that we won't need to call in the reinforcements anytime soon.

The Good, The Great, and the Ugly

Caroline had her biggest weekend ever and very much enjoyed her big Coming Out this weekend at Kiki and Poppa's house!

The Good

We made it up to MA (with lots of her belongings in tow) with not even a peep from the backseat. We didn't even forget to pack anything that was irreplaceable which was even more impressive. You should have seen me organizing for this trip; writing lists, rewriting lists, checking things off the list... When it was all said and done she had one bag and her diaper bag, we had a suitcase, and of course our laundry because no trip home is complete without a couple loads of laundry. Not too bad considering I had been contemplating the swing =) She also made it back down to CT on Sunday with just one minor fuss while we were gassing up the car. This was all very good.

The Great

On Saturday morning after her breakfast Miss Caroline took off with Steve and her Poppa (Steve's first solo trip with her!) to go and meet her Great Grandfather. Though I wasn't there - I hear it was a very special time for the McManama men and our new favorite girl. Extra special that he had her all to himself for the visit! =)

Afterwards Caroline put her party dress on and got ready to meet friends and family for the first time! She was amazingly good all day and had no trouble at all being passed around to anyone who wanted to hold her. Who doesn't want to hold a warm squishy baby body in their arms!?!?

The party was amazing and overwhelming and wonderful. As a mother I cannot imagine there being anything you want more for your daughter than to know what it is like to be loved. This was the most overwhelming part of the day - the love that people were showing to this just born little lady. To watch people who were meeting her for the first time envelop her in their arms and shower her with affection - well it just about brought me to tears a couple times.

...in Lisa's arms fast asleep like a little lovebug
...Marianne being so in tune to the temp that when the food arrived she knew there was a draft on our little miss
...Chloe kissing her on the forehead and calling her Baby Caroline all day
...and our peers - that we have shared so much with over the past 6 or so years - it is almost like opening a new chapter - one that I know will likely not have any new entries so to speak for some time, but that I am sure will be brimming over with babies and playdates and birthday parties over the years to come...

Kiki and Poppa and the girls made it such a special day for Caroline. Their planning and attention to every pink detail certainly showed and it is a day that I know I will never forget complete with introductions, extreme acts of kindness, and love for this little girl who turned just one-month-old yesterday.

The day was truly GREAT. Not to mention that the day ended with a slumber from 9 pm to 5am, the longest one to date!

The Ugly

I have been sharing how our poor babe has been having some GI difficulties and that we have been trying to work the kinks out. Well... I thought we had worked them out - she was eating well, the poo was no longer green, and she was a lot less gassy. It was like a miracle had occurred overnight!

When we got home on Sunday she was hungry and she proceeded to stay hungry until about 2 am, when she finally,and with quite a bit of fanfare throughout the evening, fell asleep - sleeping until about 8am... thank god...

She is growing - that's for sure - she did have quite an eventful weekend and probably needed some extra comfort - and sadly her poo returned to its watery green variety - but she was screaming bloody murder if she was not being held and moved and even then was not happy until she was eating. The swing - our standby - brutally rebuffed. The swaddle - she was having none of it. The Shooooosshing trick - HA! - child's play. I sang ABC, Mary had a little lamb, the itsy bitsy spider, and twinkle twinkle until I was horse only to have her close her eyes for a few moments before breaking into a grimace that most certainly was the prefix to the next crying jag.

It took its toll on me by 2. I had her attached to me for the greater part of the night and was quite worn out and quite sick of nursing by the end of it...

Even though it is the Ugly of the post - it isn't all that ugly afterall - a bit challenging - and certainly taxing physically and emotionally. I could do with a bit more sleep, but other than that - she's a baby - she's going to have tough nights --- these are the nights I will remember when she is 17 and doesn't need me anymore - so I better enjoy them while I have them right?

Brett is coming today to visit and I know I can count on him to give me a hand today.

Check out her coming out photos!!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY STEVE/DADDY!!!!

Today is Steve's 29th birthday!!!!!

Caroline and I have a special little celebration planned to honor the occasion... Thinking about his birthday made me consider that I too will be 29 in just two short months. EGADS! How did that happen????

It is amazing how much life can change from year to year and how quickly they go by!

23 - Met the most perfect boy
24 - Shacked up
25 - Got engaged
26- Got hitched
27 - Graduated from grad school - finally! (thus ending Steve's sugar daddy status)
28 - Steve gets promoted, we move to CT to begin new life, learn we are expecting, buy a house, and welcome our Caroline into the world (coincidentally - Steve's sugar daddy status begins anew)
29 - our last year of 20-dom... we will move into our house later this spring and this entire year will be full of firsts and not just for Caroline... what an exciting way to say goodbye to the 20s!

So happy birthday Steve-o!

I also want to share that many of you have emailed me letting me know that for one reason or the other you are unable to post comments to this blog, therefore making it impossible to know how many readers we actually have. Until I can devise a new way to get a head count I will just share that there are many more than I had realized...

PS. Caroline is snoring a bit in her swing - HA! It's a cute snore though I swear!!!