25 December 2012

the perfect white christmas






It has been a wonderful Christmas! It snowed last night, just enough to coat the ground and all the branches of the trees. Mama and Papa got a decent night sleep, for the first time in a few weeks, and LE had her first snowman experience!




Clearly we had three really good girls this year in our family!




LE and cousin Lily computing.




Reading new books with Oma.




Sleeping during church with Opa.




My Engineers opening presents.




This has been one of my most favorite Christmases. LE is starting to get into opening presents, reading Santa and Rudolph books, and talking about baby Jesus' birthday. Having a little one in the house brings back all the magic of Christmas! We even bought LE a couple of little presents, gasp.

I am so grateful God blessed us with our adventurous, sensitive soul Little Engineer.

24 December 2012

merry christmas!





We are spending our Christmas with the Oberholzer family this year in Pennsylvania. LE is having a blast with her cousins and she's looking forward to Santa's arrival tonight. She's been a pretty good girl this year (at least during the daytime...).




A very merry Christmas to you and your loved ones!

21 December 2012

hold on, i'm going to get all pinterest on you

This year I decided to break out my sewing machine and make a few girly Christmas presents for my nieces and LE. The problem with these types of projects is, well lets just be frank, LE. So, a few Saturdays ago the Engineer jumped out of a plane.










And in return he took LE on a long walk to give me some time to sew. (Man, I sound mega lame compared to the Engineer).

On Pinterest I saw an adorable kids apron made from a tea towel and pot holder and decided I could master it. I also found these adorable play tea bags, which were a must to accompany the tea set I had already purchased my oldest niece.



The first apron I made, not too shabby!

Long story short, I couldn't find any adorable tea towel/pot holder sets like the lady on Pinterest, so I used soft microfiber dish cloths and tea towels. I ended up liking my revised idea even better than the original. I know I should take the time to write out a tutorial, but I quite honestly don't feel like it and I forgot to take pics while sewing like a madwoman during my two hours of freedom. Another day...



LE modeling her apron while doing her chore - putting away silverware.




The tea bags are really cute, but their ultra tininess is a pain in the tush to sew!




My oldest niece, Ada, designed princess crowns for herself and the little girls a few weeks ago when she visited. I then put her designs together and sewed them. They turned out awesome, don't you think?! Ada has always been very arty. I can't wait to see all the fun things she will create as she grows up. Since I had to pull all my supplies out anyway, I had a great excuse to finally sew all the things I've been itching to do. Now I have sewing machine fever.

Want to come watch my kid? I will make your kid something AMAZINGish!

18 December 2012

the wheels on the bus

Before I had LE I would have never rode the bus around for the heck of it. But now that LE is my full time job, this is exactly the sort of thing we do. We have a bus stop literally outside our front door and in the 4 years we've lived here I had never stood at that stop until now. I used public transit frequently before moving to our current shoebox condo, so I guess I was just over it.




It doesn't matter which bus we get on. The destination isn't important. We just ride, get off and walk around a little, and then head back home. Of course, the whole time we are off the bus LE incessantly asks "Aus, please!" (It took me a minute to figure out "aus" meant "bus".)




Some of you may be thinking to yourself, "WOW, this lady is bored." That's what I would have thought pre-kids. I had no clue that staying home meant getting one chore done could take 20 times longer than it should due to a child hanging off your leg begging for you to "chase" her around the house for the 97th time that day. So instead of fighting my way through dishes or folding laundry, I try to occasionally choose the aimless adventures that completely make my little girl's day...like riding the "Aus".



Taking off her shoes and socks to munch on her toes for a second. Kids, do the weirdest things. At least my kid does, that is.

17 December 2012

ppd update

So, a brief update on the postpartum depression front. I decided about 7 months ago to work with a Naturiopathic Doctor to work on weaning off my antidepressant, develop a plan for next baby, and work on feeling my best. Long story short, I discovered I have a gluten intolerance. After being off gluten for 6 weeks, I challenged it and had terrible anxiety, insomnia, and gastrointestinal problems. Looks like I'm going to be gluten free for life! Good to know, especially since we were on carb overload after LE's birth with all the comfort food people so generously brought us. The rest that I learned was about some basic supplements and adrenal support. Oh, and a funky Chinese herbal bone broth for after childbirth next time. (Now I love making my own chicken bone broth for all our soups...makes me feel like super woman feeding my family awesome wholesome food).
My plan now is to feel good week to week. Stick with what works. If its med free great and if not thats fine too. Next baby, have several weeks of help, eat this herbal bone broth, and (keep an open mind on this one) placenta encapsulation.

pausing for ewws and grosses (especially from brother)

When I first heard about placenta encapsulation I thought it was disgusting. After we had LE, I told the midwives we didn't want to bury or eat or do anything weird to my placenta. Then I became educated on the topic and my heart still aches a little as I watch our birth video and see my placenta that was just chucked into the dumpster, literally. I have heard and read nothing but amazing things about placenta encapsulation preventing depression and anxiety (for some quick info http://placentabenefits.info/articles.asp).

In my world it's important for me and my family to be healthy, happy, and feel our best. I challenge you to take a step towards an even better life. This could be eating more organic foods, spending more time with friends, or slowing down enough to actually get on the floor and play with your kid, but whatever it is start doing it. One of my favorite yoga instructors shared a mantra that has stuck with me "I can do it, I AM doing it!" I tell myself these words often, because feeling good is a challenge for all of us at some point or another.

12 December 2012

le and da da

It seems these days "the engineer and lactation chic" has become centered around the little engineer and my stay at home mama adventures, so I thought it would be nice to show case da da.

LE loves playing with her da da. She instantly approaches the Engineer when he walks in the door with a request for "chase" or "pillow", referring to her favorite games. And of course there's nothing the Engineer loves more than hearing his little girl squeal as they run around our shoebox condo. Here are a few pics of their fun together:




This is from way back to last Summer. I've been meaning to get it up on here since its such a sweet picture (thanks BIL for taking this one!)



Starting her young, although, she stands no chance of being athletic.



Playing games on the "pad".



And my personal favorite being da da's "hat" (also known as "crack"). She thinks she's a little trickster if she catches us off guard and rubs her little tushy in our faces saying "crack, crack, crack", referring to her butt crack. Incredibly inappropriate, I know, and it will most definitely come back to bite us in the "crack" when she starts school...

Thanks for being such a great husband and father, my deareast Engineer. And for supporting LE and mama play at home time. Its not always pretty, but it's a great life!

05 December 2012

hugs

So our nighttime progress has slowed a bit, to say the least. Such is motherhood - don't be married to the good or bad changes, right?




Having a snack in the fitting room at h&m.
While I don't want to get up at night anymore (or for the Engineer to either), I'm grateful for how sweet LE can be while I help comfort her to sleep. She gives lots of hugs and kisses. The other day I was looking at my phone while nursing her and she came off and said "hug". I realized she had her arms around me while feeding and wanted me to do the same in return. So much for multi tasking, guess I'll just sit on the couch melting into a big pile of mommy mush due to overload of cuteness.

11 November 2012

a change would do you good

We've been changing things up around here. One of my mommy friends imparted some wisdom (in reference to sleep and breastfeeding) to me, "You will hit your wall and know when it's time to make a change, but in the meantime do what works." And boy was she right. As much as i have wanted to change things at different points in the past, I just was never ready. There was always something about LEs cry during those times that told me it wasn't time yet. After 17 months of waking up an average of twice a night, I decided it was time for change. The last few months LE has literally nursed at least every two hours around the clock...yes, nighttime included.

The first change was at least 3-4 hour stretches during the day. Second, we stopped nursing to sleep at bedtime. Third, no nursing at night. Ahhh, this step was a little brutal with hours of what we call the "death scream." I still get up with LE when she wakes and comfort her, just sans the boob. And tonight, our biggest victory yet, the Engineer put LE to sleep. Let the heavens open and sing, because this, my friends, hasn't happened since LE was three months old.

I'm feeling like I should knock on wood; I'm feeling a little ridiculous it took me so long to get to this point; and I'm feeling an intense freedom that makes me want to go rent a hotel room and stay in it all by myself!

I recall a time when I was a college student and had just started dating the Engineer a mom I worked with said to me "All I want for Valentine's Day is a hotel room for one night - to myself." At the time I thought what a lonely idea...she most not be happily married. Clearly she wasn't in love the way I was in love... But now I get it and secretly I desire this solo hotel stay, just a tiny bit.

Cute baby pics, to end on a warm fuzzy note...


Discovering her shadow, fun times!



Dressing herself for the park.



Ball pit - pure joy.



And my most favorite pic these days...nursing her baby doll. Such a good little mama!

31 October 2012

happy halloween

LE was a little less than thrilled to be participating in Halloween activities. She refused to put on her costume. A neighbor friend talked her into wearing her wings, at least. Her mama, on the other hand, got more into the spirit. Being stuck indoors most of the week due to a hurricane gave me some time to think of craft projects. I decided we should enter the door contest our community was having. I'm still waiting to hear that I won first prize...



Because this is pretty awesome, don't you agree?! All supplies we had in our house.



Spiders made out of egg cartons.



Mommy why are we doing this?



Hopefully next year will be more exciting for LE!

26 October 2012

hot commodity

Ok, let's get something out in the open.

I am an undecided voter.

Yes, undecided, female, and swing state residing. That's me. This makes me a rather desired person at the moment. Everyone wants to talk to me on the phone and have me view their tv ads, neither of which are helpful.

I haven't told anyone (except the Engineer), because (a) I don't want to hear opinion/judgment/my candidate is better crap and (b) I feel slightly embarrassed. Embarrassed, like maybe you'd think I was having an identity crisis or something.

Truth be told voting is never easy for me. I'm an independent of some sorts. Soon the polls will call my name and I will be forced to make a decision. A decision I'd rather avoid, but guess I will woman up and face it!








Photos courteously of LE. She was having a great time taking self pics. It's scary how well she can find her way around the iPhone and iPad these days!

16 October 2012

strollin'

If you were wondering what LE heaven looks like just scroll down to the pics below. It's simple and $11.29 at Target.

The Engineer and I rarely buy LE anything, including Christmas and Birthday presents. We are so blessed with hand me downs and gifted toys/clothes from friends and family that we just save. However, every time LE sees a baby doll stroller she's glued to it and after a few weeks of her pushing around a little plastic chair I decided to splurge.




I had to pry it from her fingers to pay for it.



Still not ready to part with her prized toy, so it rode in the carseat with her.











I think someone's going to be a good big sister...of course she has a few more years to train for the role!

13 October 2012

my pumpkin's pumpkin

Letting LE's inner artist coming out with some festive finger painting!









09 October 2012

poop

The kind of emails The Engineer gets these days:

Subject: Poop

Maya pooped on her potty! She was diaper less and started farting, I asked her if she needed to go potty and she sat on it for a while and went! I'm so proud.


You know, just the important stuff. We are no where close to potty trained, but just easing into it. LE spends a chunk of her day sans diaper, practicing on the potty, and mama cleaning up lots of accidents.

LE is brave little girl like her daddy and sensitive like her mama. She wants to try everything at the playground and keep up with the big kids, but she also bursts into tears if someone looks at her the wrong way. My sensitive little soul...




Does that look like a little engineer mini me or what?




Anyone want a LE shipped to them?







Dinosaur jammies are the best.




Enjoying some kale chips - quite possibly one of our messiest foods yet.




Loving her baby (who is naked, so she can "go potty" too).

20 September 2012

at the beach

We spent last week at Rehoboth beach with the in laws. It was a great time and especially fun for LE and her two cousins, Ada and Lily.

It seemed as if all my efforts to hide LE from "kid foods" were lost. For the first time LE had ice cream, cookies, m&ms, grilled cheese, and hot dogs. She loved them all. All battles I was bound to lose at some point. Everything in moderation, I suppose.

We discovered LE loves the ocean and is fearless playing in the waves. The first day she sat on my lap and we let the waves crash on us, but by the last few days she was walking into the waves swatting our hands (a classic "I got this one guys." don't need to hold hands LE move.)

Pics for those who love cute kids:

LE smashing all of Ada's sand castles - what a great sport Ada was about the tragedy!




Lily wasn't so sure about the beach.



Wearing Oma's hat.



We rented bikes for the week. LE really enjoyed it, as long as we didn't go further than a mike or two.















Surfing while daddy naps.



Tea party! Ada served the little girls cold chamomile tea and cookies.



LE dumped her tea on herself, but seemed entertained.



We are looking forward to more trips with the cousins! Now I'm wondering if I can get a 4 year old some where? They sure do come on handy.