Wednesday, March 31, 2010

I'm So Cool

Tonight at work, I realized the lyrics to Gangsta's Paradise are still firmly lodged deep within my subconscious. Two coworkers rapped a few words to each other and then all of a sudden, words were flowing from my mouth as I joined in. They looked at me in shock. My friend Joe asked: "So....where are you from again?!"

"South Carolina."


That's right. Moms can know rap music too. And by rap music, I mean unoffensive, toned down, and at least somewhat understandable songs. Coolio and I go way my elementary days. I vividly remember staying home from school one day to memorize the Dangerous Minds CD I had secretly borrowed from my sister. I thought I would impress all of my friends with my rapping abilities. This was similar to the incident where my two closest friends and I spent countless afternoons dancing to Michael Jackson's "Man in the Mirror" and learning the moves in the "Thriller" video.

Look at me now- a veritable fountain of useless knowledge and abilites...until tonight. Joe was impressed. Fourteen years later, that day from fourth grade has really paid off.

Thanks, Coolio.

Monday, March 29, 2010

A Weekend with Family

Last weekend, Nathan and I made an impromptu trip home to Othello. After driving twelve hour overnight, we arrived ready to enjoy a few precious hours with family. Eliza was asleep for nearly the entire drive over and happy to be out of her car seat by the time we reached Othello.

Although we were only there for 24 hours or so, it was worth the drive to see so many of our family members. Additionally, I was able to meet Nathan's best friend since childhood and his lovely wife, Megan along with their baby Noah.

Here are some more snapshots of the weekend:

My niece and nephew, Ellie and Hayden, attempt to push Nathan's 1967 MGB. He said he would restore it and give it to me one day. That is one promise I will NOT be forgetting.Yes, she is wearing a bear suit. Why? Because it was a gift...and it's warm.Ellie and Hayden pretend to drive Grandpa's lawn mower.
Eliza and Aunt JennyNathan and I looking pretty exhausted after church.
And lastly, Eliza has a fun time with Grandma.There is something so great about being with family. It makes me sad my own family is so far away in South Carolina and that our nearest relatives are a 12 hour drive away. After having Eliza, these feelings have only become more intense. I want her to know her grandparents and play with her cousins, aunts, and uncles. I want her to be surrounded by her wonderful family who love her. So this weekend, we're off to Othello again!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Yep. I love her!

When Eliza was first born, I remember looking at her and thinking: "I love this precious baby, and she is mine forever." That was after: "Holy crap. I'm a mom!?"

I am sure this is a feeling most new mothers expierence, and as the months have gone by, I have graduated to higher levels of love and emotion. However, I must admit, the history of my love for Eliza was not as I always imagined. There were times, especially during the months of colic and weeks of frustration with breastfeeding, that I felt an absence of the special mother/child bond I knew should exist. I thought: "Am I the only person who isn't IN LOVE with her baby?" Although I loved her, I felt something just had not clicked. Admitting this to anyone was out of the question. How could I tell someone these feelings without worrying about being judged or deemed a horrible mother?

Of course, after delivery and throughout breastfeeding, most women have out of control hormones. My emotional instability created a skewed image of motherhood, which I tried to not let effect my relationship with my daughter. At almost seven months though, it seems as though the hormones have finally settled. Each day, I feel a growing amount of love for Eliza. She smiles , and I smile back. She stares, and I stare right back. She touches my face with her tiny baby hands, and I feel she knows I am her mother. She coos and laughs, and I want to cry.

The road to these moments of infinite happiness was long. But like so many parents have said before, it was all worth it just to hold the warm body of your little one against you. Only a few minutes ago, Eliza woke up crying. I walked into her nursery and stood over her crib, eliciting a shriek of joy, flailing arms, and the biggest smile. Until today, I didn't know I could feel so much love for one person!

I think Nicole Krauss describes it best in her novel, The History of Love:

"Even now, all possible feelings do not yet exist, there are still those that lie beyond our capacity and our imagination. From time to time, when a piece of music no one has ever written or a painting no one has ever painted, or something else impossible to predict, fathom or yet describe takes place, a new feeling enters the world. And then, for the millionth time in history, the heart surges and absorbs the impact."

So yep! I love love my baby....if you couldn't tell.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

"When the first baby laughed for the first time...

its laugh broke into a thousand pieces, and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies."

Well, Eliza laughs. And even though she isn't the first baby to ever laugh, I think it was a pretty momentous event in my life. For months, Nathan did everything he could think of to elicit even the smallest of smiles, all the while hoping for a laugh. He would literally spend hours trying to get Eliza to giggle at something funny he did. We were pretty unsuccessful. But then.....behold!! :She did it! No longer can Nathan say: "She just lays there...and doesn't really do anything exciting."

It seems as though she acquired the ability to make the cutest baby laughs over night. It was nothing we did; that's for sure. With this great milestone conquered, I feel as though she has lost some of her baby essence. No longer does she give just a bashful smile or a slight giggle; she is now steadily developing a whole range of emotions and abilities. She is alert, she is doing her best to talk, and she manages to roll all around the place.Her laughter is the most adorable sound, and it certainly brings happiness into our home.

p.s. The English major in me is reminded of Peter Pan, hence the title of this post. Do yourself a favor and fall in love with the literature of J.M. Barrie if you haven't done so yet.

p.p.s. Thanks, Jenny (my lovely sister-in-law) for the picture. We love it.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

So Sleepy

Eliza fights sleep, but sometimes loses (even when she is sitting straight up).

Case in point:

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Check-up for Baby

At her six month appointment, Eliza weighed in at a hefty 16.8 pounds,measured 26 inches long, smiled for the pediatrician (she always acts like an angel at the doctor's office, even when she's sick), and demonstrated how her motor skills are definitely improving.
Really. That crinkly paper is just too tempting for babies.She's a happy baby these days...even when she's feeling a little sick.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Note from the Editor

There are now 119 posts on this blog. One of them was made by me. Each member of family has to do his or her part. I'd like to think that, in a way, I just did mine.

I will sleep much easier tonight. The air feels lighter, crisper. Today is a good day.

Survival of the Scaredest

Eliza inherited a lot of things from me. Some are obvious (like the face parts) but some are not so obvious. I have an overdeveloped sense of "freak out," which I use whenever I don't know someone is home and they knock on my door to talk to me, or something much more sinister. . . say something out loud, especially my name. I gasp, jump eight feet, my eyes get real big, and I start breathing heavily. And that's how I know I'm not alone. Overall, it's not a very efficient sense, but it is effective.

Eliza has learned both this sense of freak out and the hypnotic trances that lead up to it. When she's tired, she starts to get really quiet and stare at things, much more than any person should. That's when you know that no matter what you say or do, it's going to scare the living daylights out of her.

"Hey Eliza, want some milk?"

The worst part is that she looks at me with the face of "how could you??" and it just kills me. The last time it happened was when I said "saude" to her sneeze. There was a long enough delay between sneeze and speech that she was able to get in to "the zone." Poor poor thing.

Disclaimer: mock photography. I do not purposefully scare my baby to decorate blog posts.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Dear Goats,

Thank you for keeping my baby alive. And happy for the first time in months.

While Eliza isn't necessarily allergic to breastmilk,our lactation specialist (and I) believe she is unable to break down the milk protein in breastmilk or any formulas that contain milk. Our pediatrician suggested Similiac Alimentum and while it was a blessing in so many ways, it was not the answer. Once we introduced the Alimentum, Eliza's colic stopped. We continued to breastfeed her partially, but every time she drank even the smallest amount of breastmilk, there was a noticeable difference in her demeanor- she was fussy, irritable, and unhappier overall. Alimentum set us in the right direction, but after seeing how Eliza digested the formula, I felt sick to my stomach. She wasn't colicky, but she was in pain.

Then, we came across the idea of goat's milk. Two of Nathan's brothers had colic and would not nurse. Nathan's mother searched for a solution and then gave them goat's milk, which seemed to help. We were so desperate that we would try anything. I was wary of giving Eliza unpasteurized milk, but after some research (and a half gallon of pasteurized goat's milk from Good Earth), we decided to find a farm with unpasteurized goat's milk. Finally we found Drake Family Farms in South Jordan. It is a small family farm (and forty minutes away), but it is definitely worth the trip. Eliza has been so happy lately! She loves the milk and it has been incredibly good for her digestion. Biologically, goat's milk is the closest substitute for breastmilk. I can confirm this is true!

I have tried to put aside feelings of failing Eliza in some way by depriving her of nursing because I know goat's milk is the best thing for her. I'd recommend it to any parents in a similar situation (and in fact, I have!). Two babies are a lot happier thanks to these goats!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Well That Explains A Lot

A couple of weeks ago, I saw these people walking across the street from house:
Okay, okay. So maybe they were people DRESSED like Darth Vader and Stormtroopers, but I saw them nonetheless!

I stared awkwardly....and one of the Stormtroopers waved with his blaster rifle. It was odd. Definitely odd.

And then, this Friday, a week after the "incident," Amalia sent me a link to this youtube clip:

Now it all makes sense. Or does it.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Six Months Already?!

This weekend, Eliza turned six months old! I can hardly believe it. Finally, she takes naps and sleeps for extended amounts of time during the day. She is a happy baby, and we love her immensely.I can't imagine life without little Eliza... or all the sleep!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

A Change of Heart

Proof that utter happiness....can turn into sheer terror in a matter of seconds.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Do Not Wash

While cleaning out Eliza's diaper bag, I accidentally grabbed a clean diaper and tossed it into the washing machine with her dirty clothes. The result:As it turns out, diapers hold an alarming amount of liquid.And yet Eliza can still manage to wet herself and maintain a semi-dry diaper. How does that happen!? She's a ninja baby.

Monday, March 1, 2010


The result of a hungry baby and no clean bottle.Eliza can hold her milk storage container.
Please take note of the drool. That's goes all the way to her belly button. Eliza- the prolific drooler.