Monthly Archives: July 2013

The Rest of ’em…

There’s more to this family than Quinn and I, believe it or not. And they are quite a motley crew. Busy, busy, all of them! I’m the lone, lazy duck in this family. So here’s the update on the rest of the Proebsting’s…

Kyle: Is studying. Lots. I believe it’s 94 days til the test (95 til Quinn!). He’s home from work early every day now, but don’t let that fool you… we still don’t see him til supper. Well, except to greet him in the driveway, Leah’s favorite part of the day. This test is gonna be a doozy (aren’t they all) – so any sort of praying, crossing fingers, lucky wishes, thoughts, etc you want to send this way, please do. Because, you’ll remember, if he passes…. done! (Kind of, but that’s a story for another day). His updates are kind of boring because he wakes up at 4:30 to study, then goes to work, then comes home to study… not a lot else going on in his little life.

Duncan: This dog. THIS DOG. He ate my dress the other day. While in his cage! He pulled part of it through the wires in the cage, and had himself a good time with it. Some days I swear I could beat him. He doesn’t realize that there isn’t a whole lot to my wardrobe these days. Leah still likes him (probably because he doesn’t eat her clothes). They are playing together so well lately, it really is a treat to watch. They can really entertain each other – which is a bonus for me. I mentioned in a blurb the other day how we are “doorbell desensitizing” him. And, actually, it’s going pretty well! He really is a smart, willing to please dog – we just have to work with him… a lot. So this doorbell thing, basically he turns into an uncontrollable (but happy) monster any time the doorbell rings or someone knocks – it is such a pain. Most of the time, I chase him around the wood floors cursing his name, while he tries to dig his claws into our slippery floors. Usually, I end up grabbing him by the neck and throwing him into our bedroom… and continue on to greet whomever is at the door red-faced and sweaty. If it’s a regular at our house, we would just turn him loose… fend for yourselves, friends. But if it’s a mailman or UPS or someone else… it’s a workout for me. So I finally just started actually training him – imagine that! Now he must sit in his bed and stay patiently while we get the door. He’s not allowed up, and he’s not allowed to greet anyone. It’s so hard on him, I can tell. His tail wags so hard, and his butt pops up constantly, but if I stay on him… he will sit there and behave himself like a good dog. Then if he completes the process and remains seated he gets a treat. So far so good! I’m ready for the day I don’t have to say, “stay” a million times, but we’ll get there. He’s smart. Yesterday I was able to open the door and retrieve a package only having to say stay once! That’s his big news, he’s such a disaster. But he’s a good boy, too, I suppose.

Leah: My favorite two year old. She’s doing a million new things every day, of course. The talking is really picking up, it’s so fun to have little conversations with her. She is starting to say some pretty funny things, too, I’m gonna have to start writing them down. It’s funny to hear just what is going on in her head. She has one word though, that stumps me… I believe it’s “deek” – I have no idea what it could mean! And she says it often! And in different contexts… I’m at a loss. Maybe she doesn’t even know, who knows. I can’t wait for the “ah ha” moment with it, though. Deek! What does it mean?! She is on an ABC roll lately! It’s actually a lot of fun. I am most certainly not the parent that was going to teach my two year old the ABCs, and actually, the parents that do get on my nerves. They are two… there’s plenty of time for ABCs. I want her playing and exploring right now, I don’t care if she’s learning the alphabet or learning to count. However, she is very drawn to letters – so we go with it. She doesn’t know all of them, and she most definitely will never sing the song… but she is learning them one by one. I think right now she knows A B E O S P. “Knows” as in, when she sees them anywhere she makes sure everyone knows she found one. O and P are her favorites. She knows what sounds they all make, too. For instance, if she sees an S she will point and say ssssssssss. Today we were talking about “P” and we asked her what started with P and I said, Pooh, and Kyle said, Proebsting, and Leah said, “Poop.” So, you know, we’ve got that going for us. I don’t need her to know all 26, and we don’t have sit down lessons, but she’s learning them and having a lot of fun doing it. She’s going to love reading some day. She’s also eating quite the variety of foods lately – thank goodness! Her tastebuds have really blossomed, and I give all credit to the millions of hours I spend pregnant, barefoot, and in the kitchen lately. In the past couple weeks she has tried ham, hot dogs, more chicken, corn, green pepper, and hamburger. I love when she’ll give something a try, and she’s learning that it’s fun and there’s no pressure involved. She gets real excited about corn now. She’s obsessed with the outdoors, and all things “ball.” Soccer, basketball, baseball… if there’s a ball involved, she’s playing. She can hit a ball off a T, let me tell you. She also loves to swing. With the exception of getting a shirt off, she can pretty much dress and undress herself whenever she sees fit. Shoes, pants, undies, shirt on… she can do it all. She makes my life pretty easy sometimes.

And there they are. Studying, staying, spelling bunch of Proebsting’s I have.

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Third Trimester Shock.

Well it happened. We hit the beginning of the end.

How is that possible?! The end, really? We’re closer to the end than the beginning?? It’s just mind boggling. I’ve had to change my thinking a lot lately. Things have been getting harder and harder for me and for the past couple weeks I’ve been so curious as to why. For instance, showering isn’t really a relaxing break from two crazies anymore – it’s more of a get in, get clean, get out operation. By the end (heaven forbid it’s a shave the legs day) I need a nap. Playing with Leah – the up and down and up and down and up and down that child demands is next to impossible these days. And I’ve been so hard on myself, constantly thinking, you are such a wuss, you are only 8 weeks pregnant. This is not that hard. And finally it hit me over the weekend, I am most certainly not 8 weeks pregnant. I am 26 weeks pregnant, with only 14 to go. Third trimester status. This sweet child o’ mine is 2lbs and 9inches, think “head of lettuce.”  There is not a lot of room for breathing or bending these days. It’s completely acceptable for it to be getting harder.

In true third trimester fashion, yesterday almost killed me. It was a constant fight to put one foot in front of the other. I hurt everywhere, was exhausted, lazy, starving, emotional and just overall not in a good mood. And then Kyle suggested we go on a walk – why I decided that’d be a good idea I have no idea. It was not fun. I was very close to death by the time we got home. Walking is not normally a struggle for me, even pregnant, but yesterday everything was a struggle. But I recovered, fell asleep sitting up at 8:30 last night, and woke up much better today. Hallelujah. I even went grocery shopping, played with my girl and my dog outside all morning, and made a new batch of muffins. More days like this, less like yesterday, please.

So what’s the star of the show up to? Well, growing. Lots of her big projects – growing organs, developing lungs, breathing, opening eyes, getting a circulatory system are now complete! Now she just needs to perfect the lungs and breathing and get some fat on her bones! Go, Quinn, go! The braxton hicks contractions with this child are out of control. I feel like I get them constantly, and they are much stronger than Leah’s were. However, my doctor and google seem to think that’s normal for a second baby so I suppose I’ll keep myself from checking into labor and delivery for a little while longer. She’s a nut though – always, always on the move. She loves to kick me the second I touch my belly, however, the second her dad touches my belly she plays dead. It drives me nuts. Yesterday, though, she gave Leah a good couple of kicks for the first time! Pretty fun experience. She’s now in the ripple stage and will swim all over my insides. Her little limbs and feet and fists and rump stick out of various spots on my belly – my favorite. I love guessing what it is – and then poking it. Leah would always move when I poked her, Quinn just sticks out further. She’s a mess. Also, she’s doing a number on my bladder these days – I feel like I spend 85% of every day in there. It gets pretty annoying, let me tell you.

At the end of last week and into the weekend, Quinn got lots of new toys thanks to online shopping. The UPS people and I will become close friends by the end of this week. (Which is good, because we are really working with Duncan to not be a complete spaz when the doorbell rings). I’m hoping that by the end of the week we have the crib piece… and everything else :). Even though things are really coming together for her arrival, I’m still ready for everything to be completely in place. After all, this is the beginning of the end. She got a new bouncer, and some swaddles, and a blanket, and a changing pad, and a sling, and lots of other fun things she’ll care nothing about – however, the most fun for me was this:


For one, it’s been four months since I’ve bought a box of diapers, crazy! And I must admit, I really kind of missed it. I always liked buying diapers, I don’t know why. Made me feel like a mom, I guess. And since there is a diaper void in my life right now, and Target had a $10 gift card if you bought two boxes… why the heck not?

We’ll be opening them in no time at all!

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Feeling Accomplished.

Aaaand exhale.

I feel like I can finally breathe a little bit. I’ve had this list in my head of things that have to get done, and it’s has gotten substantially smaller in the past week. Now, whether or not this stuff absolutely has to get done now, or it’s some kind of nesting freak out I don’t really know. But in my head it’s all the same. It’s all logical in there.

I’ve been just dying to get the room together. And it’s getting there! So we tore open all the boxes last weekend – and wouldn’t you know – the crib had a big hole in it, front and center. I almost died. We are assuming it happened during shipping, of course. So I called the company on Monday, and luckily they are sending another piece out to us and it should be here sooooon. (And it had better have no holes)! It just kills me to wait, but I suppose I’m surviving.

Kyle was gracious enough to put together both the dresser and changer for me though, so I can definitely rest a little easier.

Then we got the chair a couple nights ago! You know this chair, the one that absolutely, positively has to be comfortable and nursing friendly above all else. Well, it is, but it’s certainly not pretty. It’s actually not too ugly, but it definitely doesn’t match the room – which freaks me out. I can’t handle when things don’t match. So I’ve got five slipcover samples coming and they should be on my doorstep sooooon as well. In the meantime, I can sit in the chair while Duncan and Leah make a mess of Quinn’s room. It really is the most comfortable thing I think I’ve sat in. It just fits me. I went to four furniture stores and did a lot of sitting – and I found this ugly sucker at Sams! And the day we went to pick it up it was $50 off! If that’s not a sign I don’t know what is. I’m excited to give it a pretty shirt though. And maybe a throw pillow, too. It needs a lot of help.

And then last night, I capped off the week of accomplishments. Even though we don’t have the crib together, it was making me insane that we didn’t have a mattress for it. Just on the off chance the crib piece comes tomorrow (please UPS) I will need the mattress ready to go, so I can put the sheet and bumper on and see it all together, of course! And then, I gave myself a bonus and got the baby monitor. You might think we have one, but you are forgetting that Duncan ate our first one. And then you might think we bought another, but you are also forgetting that he ate the charger of the second one. That dog. His days are numbered.


Yes, you. You monster.

And then… then, I really got accomplished. I bought my first Christmas present! Well, Leah’s first Christmas present. I popped into Kohls to see if they had anything new since the last time I was in there 5 days ago. Of course they do. And of course it was on sale. BUT. I skipped a lot of things I didn’t neeeed – and got the one gift I did.

A disco ball light for my girl.

The kid loves a disco ball. They have one front and center at Lowes, and she and I have been in Lowes a lot lately with picking out paint, and electrical things, and curtains… yada yada. Every time we go in, she runs straight for it. And wants me to pick her up. She points at the colors and touches it, and she just smiles and squeals in absolute delight. “A ball! A ball!” It really actually melts my heart to see how happy it makes her, and I decided a while ago she would be getting one for Christmas. And today Kohls had one. On sale. And I was in the mood to get things done. Merry Christmas, Leah!

But then I started thinking, what kind of Christmas shopping will I be able to do between Nov 1 and Dec 25 having just had surgery (it’s not exactly easy to walk or stand after a c-section), and having two babies at home, one of whom will need me every couple hours?!

And just like that another list of freak outs is upon me. Christmas shopping starts now.

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Baby Fever.

Well there’s nothing like watching the Royal Baby news unfold to bring on a serious case of baby fever. C’mon, Quinn! Actually, you should wait. You’ve still got some time in there – but man I’m getting excited to see you, little girl.

Did you watch all the action? Or see replays? I happen to think it’s fascinating! Sure, it’s not American tradition, but who the heck cares – don’t be a Debbie downer, be excited! Kings and Queens go back quite a ways if I recall, and it’s pretty cool that it’s still going on. American’s just get to reenact all of our history, they’re still living theirs. And who doesn’t love a new baby??

I know I do! I have gotten real excited to see ours! I don’t know, seeing those new parents show off that baby to the world – very sweet. I’d be terrified if I was Kate, though – can’t imagine that pressure one day after giving birth, but my goodness if I could look that good that day after Quinn’s born. Ha! Please. (Although, I’d like the punch the next person who talks about whether or not she’s breastfeeding – I believe that’s her choice? Mom’s are so judgy, it drives me up the wall! I can’t imagine having all eyes on me with such a personal choice).

Anyways…. Back to our little princess.

I’ve just had baby on the brain full force these last few days. It started when we really got to work in her nursery this weekend. I could finally see it coming together, and can now start to picture her in there. So fun! And then these Royal people showing off their baby, and knowing the excitement that comes with having a new baby and reliving all of those experiences we had with Leah in my mind, and imagining what Quinn’s homecoming will be like. I’m just excited.

More specifically, I’m excited for:

The big day: Go on and judge me (because that’s what we do to mom’s), but I’m excited to have a c-section. And I’m excited that I kind of sort of know her birthday will be on November 1st. Unless of course she comes early, but she’s been instructed not to under any circumstances! What’s the night before like? The night before you know you’re going to wake up and meet your baby? I don’t know, but I bet it’ll be pretty exciting. Kyle will have finished his test, so we’ll have that pressure gone – also fantastic. I can’t wait for that night. I’ll let you know how it goes!

My mom to come: She’s on Leah and Duncan duty while we’re away, God help her. Maybe she can train Duncan while we’re gone. I’m just excited that she’ll be here when we get home. Nothing like having your mom around the house, especially under these circumstances. I’ve been planning some surprises for the three of them while we’re gone, and I’m getting excited to get everything together for her stay.

Fall: I’m just excited for fall in general. I love the new, cool, crisp air that comes with fall. The pumpkin spice smells. Pumpkin muffins! Windows open. Taking walks. Fall decorations. And oh yes, fall is when we have a baby.

Breastfeeding: I am the most excited about this. Like, giddy actually. Cannot freaking wait. I hope so much that Quinn and I have the experience Leah and I did. It wasn’t flawless, but we dug our heals in at times and made it a little over a year. I don’t think I’ll put a time limit on Quinn (you know, besides like 4), because I realize now just how much I miss it! I look at nursing stuff in the stores… just to look. And dream of those snuggly nights. I was incredibly fortunate to have an entire team around both of us throughout the entire year. I had my OB doc, who always encouraged me to try and congratulated me at my post baby appointment with giving it a shot and doing well. (Even at my appointment yesterday, I overheard the receptionist giving a girl 38 weeks pregnant a pep talk because she said she wanted to try but was nervous – I just smiled; what a great office). I had Leah’s doctor who at every appointment told me how happy he was that it was working and that Leah was doing wonderfully, and specifically gave me credit. Even when her weight fluctuated, he never said that I needed to supplement, simply that my body would kick it into gear when it needed to and if I fed Leah when she was hungry she would turn out just fine. And she did. I had my mom to bother with all my, “she’s not eating enough” problems who always calmed me down telling me over and over she would eat when she was hungry… and it finally got into my head enough to stick. I had the hospital lactation consultants on speed dial and called them constantly with ridiculous questions and they always reassured me, and always offered to watch her eat or to weigh her for my own piece of mind. And later, solved some of our teething and growing issues. And I had Kyle, who when we had our first full day home from the hospital tried to calm me down from freaking out that she was starving to death and eventually decided to drive us all back to the hospital so we could get some more help from the lactation consultant, and then even when Leah was 9 months old rubbed my back one night at 2am as I was feeding her, crying over her thanks to tooth 11 coming in and causing us both so much pain. It took a village. But no one (in my team) ever made me feel like I wasn’t doing a good job. No one ever said, “some mom’s can’t do it” “some babies can’t do it” – it was constant encouragement. And it helped me to disregard the “you should supplement” people completely; the biggest hurdle. Sometimes it was insanely hard and overwhelming. A lot of times it was peaceful and soothing. I can’t wait for all of it all over again. (Not to mention the 60lbs I lost while eating whatever the heck I wanted!)

Introducing Duncan: Oh man, we’ve got to get him trained. I can’t imagine walking in with a car seat and a tiny Quinn and a fresh incision and seeing that beast come barreling at us tail wagging, destroying everything in his path. But, I’m also very excited. He’s such a good brother, and I think he will be very interested in all that a new baby has to offer. I see lots of sniffing and cleaning :). I imagine him walking sleepily up the stairs with me at night to assist in the feeding, but Kyle seems to think he’ll continue on snoring, not to be disturbed. I suppose we’ll see. I can’t wait to watch a Duncan and Quinn relationship develop. I can’t wait for when she starts moving around and grabbing for his tail and ears. Learning to stand up using him as a table. Sweet thoughts with that boy of ours 🙂

The first look: Seeing what they look like for the first time is nothing short of fantastic. Nine months of waiting and wondering and then you get that first look and your heart melts. Will she look like Leah did? Bald? Tons of hair like her mama? 8lbs? 9?! Just so many questions!

Sisters: We all know about this one, I’m so stinking excited to have two little girls! I get really excited when I think about Leah watching and learning all about her new little sister. Coming to the hospital to meet her for the first time. Hopefully enjoying her. Maybe wanting to help me with her. To watch their relationship play out I think will probably be too much for my heart to handle. I think Leah will be the best sister, and I can’t wait to see it all unfold.

Being a new family: I just excited to see us as a family of four. Well, five. What will that dynamic be like? I feel like I’ll have kids coming out of my ears. How will it go when Kyle leaves us for work for the first time? Will Duncan have to go to the farm? Probably. But I’ll try my hardest to keep him around. What will I do when Leah and Quinn are both screaming for me? When do I shower? Sit? Eat? Ok, so maybe this should all go under the “I’m terrified” category, but I guess I’m a little excited, too. Just to see what it’s like. Just to see if we actually live through it. I was so excited to see what our family of three would look like and that one turned out pretty well, surely we can handle another?!

There are infinitely more than I have listed. New babies are just exciting in general. But these are the big ones. The ones that make my heart leap. The ones my dreams are made of.

A week and three months and we’re there!

Oh baby!

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Ready To Eat.

I’m about to brag on myself, so if you don’t want to hear it stop reading.

Have you stopped?

Well then off we go. First, I’ll tell you the bad news. For my last doctor’s appointment ( a month ago) I stepped on the scale and learned I had gained 9lbs (nine) in one month. I was mortified. And not exactly sure how it happened. Of all the months to gain a lot of weight, that was not it. I did pretty well with eating/moving etc. My doctor said, “woah,” but not in a mean way. She told me that everything else was fine; I had no swelling, good blood pressure, and had been healthy throughout – so she wasn’t too concerned. She actually chalked it up to my boobs. I think she was just trying to make me feel better.

But I was still upset. So I set out on a mission. And I took my family with me. I declared on that drive home that we would not eat out for any meal until my next doctor’s appointment in a month. That I would have no sweets in the house. That I would stop making cakes and cookies every other day. That we would all become healthy; for my sake, for Quinn’s sake, but also for Kyle and Leah.

Now, we are not unhealthy people. We are not overweight. But we did enjoy a weekend meal at a restaurant. We do like sweets. But we found ways to manage. Hello muffins. I started cooking with vegetables a lot. I cram those suckers in anything I can find. I cut out sugar and replaced it with applesauce. Gave up orange juice for water. And gave myself one bar of dark chocolate and one pint of dairy free ice cream… a week. Which amounts to about a spoonful a night. I cooked every breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the past 30 days (with one exclusion for Leah’s birthday). We’ve had a carb as a side with dinner twice in the last month. We eat something green every day. And it worked!

I hopped on the scale today hoping for 4lbs (1lb a week) – and learned I gained one. ONE POUND. And actually, Quinn was supposed to have gained a pound, so I give it to her. Which means I gained no pounds! I’m pretty freaking proud of myself. It wasn’t easy to cook so much, or to not go out just for fun, or to not eat cake several times a week like I wanted; but it was worth it today. And this was the month with three birthday parties full of food and cake! Talk about self restraint!

This is how I controlled my pregnancy with Leah. I was hard on myself for Leah’s sake. I read every ingredient, counted every mg of sodium, and watched every single little shred of food that went into my mouth. And I gained 29lbs and she was almost 9. We were a healthy pair. It took me 20 weeks, but I’m finally on track with Quinn, and she deserves the same treatment. She deserves mama to be healthy. It’s not as easy with her, though. She really likes cake. Leah could take it or leave it. Quinn could eat it all day every day. So I have to be harder on her (and yes, I know it’s actually on myself). I really have to focus. I really have to say no! My new goal, since gaining more in the beginning with Quinn, is to end up at the same weight I was with Leah. If I can gain just one pound a week for the remainder of the pregnancy, I will have three to spare (since I only gained one this month). We can do it Quinn!

I’m actually very much into the groove right now. They say it takes 21 days to form a habit. And we had 30. I’m there. Today I actually started the day telling myself I’d get Wendy’s after the doctor’s appointment, but then just decided I’d rather skip the fat and sodium and just eat my chicken salad I made yesterday. And have my crumb of dark chocolate. Funny how your brain can just transform. It’s easier to say no to cake than it was a month ago. I’m enjoying trying lots of new recipes (and watching Kyle’s faces as he eats them). I’m loving baking my brown and green muffins packed full of good crap. It’s been an adjustment to not go to a restaurant on a weekend, but I actually didn’t even think of it this weekend. It’s just not an option until this baby comes out. And Leah and Kyle have tried lots of new things, too! They are healthier as well. Because if they don’t eat what I cook… they don’t eat. I’m in charge of the menu around here, so it’s up to me to keep them healthy. My favorite part of this little month long journey was when I decided to make Leah some normal muffins one day. I was so excited to make her a “special treat.” The only good thing in them was blueberries (and I threw in some flax), but they were made with white flour (gasp) and white sugar (double gasp) – and she wouldn’t eat them! She took one bite and said nope! However, she’s a sucker for my carrot, apple, honey, wheat, flax, green machine, muffins! I’m changing her little taste buds one muffin at a time :).

With all that being said, we are going out this weekend for our now monthly trip to a restaurant. And I’m already drooling over the menu. It will be fun to have someone else cook, and to eat something with salt, I’m not gonna lie. And then to get a little ice cream to top it off. But the day after, it’s back to the grind. And we’ll all live longer because of it. I’m kind of happy with my 9lb gain to kick myself (and family) into gear. This pregnancy is so different than Leah’s it’s incredible. The cravings are out of this world intense, but that doesn’t mean it can’t end with the same healthy results.

C’mon Friday, I’m ready to eat my one bad for me meal!

In case you’re wondering, tonight will be my first crack at Stir Fry. Kyle’s already raising his eyebrows. But, in case it goes sour, I bought fortune cookies! 🙂

Oh, and the rest of the doctor’s appointment went fine. Quinn kicked the doppler for the first time, just like Leah did every time. It was a fun little memory. And I got official word from the doctor that her ultrasound was complete and her little heart ventricles look fine 🙂

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My First Book.

So we’re winding down around here. Actually, that’s a lie. We’re getting into the thick of things! But, technically, we’re on the back half and thus getting closer and closer to meeting Quinn. And with a new birthday coming closer and closer I find myself not only worrying about how to get the house, nursery, myself ready – but how to get Leah ready.

It’s gonna be a big freakin deal the day she actually becomes a big sister. Her little world where all focus is on her will be no more. I’ll cry if I think about it; so I won’t. But I am trying to start to prepare her for it.

I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect book to read with her. And, let me say, I have been disappointed in the selection. They just seem to all fall short of what I want to say to her about the experience. They all talk about helping and responsibility and how fun it will be, and while those are all valid points, I have issues with them.

Helping: I want her to help when she wants to. I don’t want to bring Quinn home and make Leah think she is the person keeping this baby alive. I want her to help a lot, and I think she will want to as well – but I am not going to drill that in her head. It’s gonna be her choice if she helps or not, I don’t want it expected of my still little two year old. I don’t want her to think Quinn is a job that takes away all her playtime – end of story. I want her to think helping is playing.

Responsibility: She’s two. She is not responsible. I don’t want her to be responsible, I want her to be two. Again, Quinn is not Leah’s problem. She’s Kyle and I’s problem :). Maybe responsibility would work for a much older child, not mine.

How Fun it will Be: My dream is for Leah to love Quinn and think she is the most fun little thing in this house. But I have to be realistic. She will probably be jealous and hate her a lot in the beginning. She gets all of me all day long; throw another kid in the mix, one that truly needs me and Leah’s going to get thrown for a loop. I don’t want to constantly make her think it’s fun when clearly she’s missing her mama or personal playtime. That needs to be okay, too. I just need her to work with me and get through the first few months together.

So I’ve started getting annoyed. Maybe I’m not reading the right books, maybe I’m not seeing all there are – but I’m not finding the words I’m wanting. So I’m gonna write my own. Just for Leah.

I want to tell her that mommy is going to be working very hard to take care of Quinn, just like when Leah was a baby. I want to show her specific examples. I want to show her that yes, I can’t play with her when I’m nursing, but that just like when Leah was a baby, Quinn will need mommy to feed her. I want to tell her that Quinn can’t walk, or talk, or play just yet – just like when Leah was a baby. I want to explain it somehow to my two year old that just like when Leah was a baby, mommy will have to take care of Quinn a lot during the day. And that I don’t love her less, and I’m certainly not ignoring her – I’m just giving her little sister the same treatment she got for so long.

I think I’ll call it When Leah was a Baby.

It will go about like this:

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When Leah was a baby, she lived in mommy’s belly for a long time.

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And then one day she came out! And everyone came to see her.

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Baby Leah was very small, and slept a lot. You liked to be wrapped up warm and cozy and sleep in your crib.

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Mommy and daddy had to hold you a lot, because you couldn’t stand up! You were too small!

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You took a bath in a little tub because you were still too little to play and splash. Daddy always helped you.

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You couldn’t talk yet, Leah, so you cried for mommy and daddy when you needed help – and we always helped you.

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Mommy and daddy helped you eat, too, because you didn’t have any teeth! How silly!

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You couldn’t stand up or walk, but you loved to jump in your toy!

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You even had to ride in a stroller when we went on trips!


It took a little while, and mommy and daddy had to help you a lot, but soon you got big and could sit up and play with us!

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Then you learned how to crawl and walk!


Now you’re big, and you can run and jump and play!

But when you were a baby, you needed mommy and daddy to help you do lots of things.

And baby Quinn will need us to help her just like we helped When Leah was a Baby.

I don’t know if it will work, but it’s the approach that makes the most sense in my head. Mainly it will be a book for great discussion. Obviously, I don’t plan on just reading through this book sentence by sentence and that’s it. Hopefully we can expand on it as we go through it. We have been going through lots of pictures and videos on facebook of when Leah was a baby, and she loves to look at them. I try to explain to her how little she was and how daddy and mommy had to hold her because she couldn’t walk. I show her the video of her trying to talk, and learning to crawl, and eating dinner for the first time – and she just watches in amazement. My hope is that she will associate the two, and give Quinn a little break when she gets here. We shall see.

Thanks, Shutterfly, for cheap photo book publishing.

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Ano’er More.

Well, I’ve got some things to tell you. And I don’t want to do laundry. And all of it is random. So enjoy the following bullets:

  • Duncan’s birthday week starts today! He will be one a week from today, whatta big boy. We love him a lot around here, and we really love birthdays – so Leah and I are happy to throw him a little party. She insists there be cake. And Kyle even wanted to get him a new bed since he has eaten both his others! For day one of birthday week, I let him eat his birthday hat.
  • KYLE PASSED HIS TEST! If you’re friends with me (or him) on facebook you knew that, but if not – we’re pretty stinking excited. Today he got his actual score… he got a 10! Out of 10! And this isn’t your average math test you guys. What a little smarty, overachiever he is. He has one more exam to take, a 5 hour one. And it’s the day before Quinn is scheduled to arrive, God help us. She best not come early. He’s already studying like crazy, and it’s only gonna get worse. But whatever Leah, Quinn, Duncan, and I can do to help him, we will. Cause if he passes on try one – HE IS DONE. (Well, there’s a paper to write, but no more tests)!
  • I am a nesting fool. Like everything with Quinn, nesting has been intense. Or at least my drive to have everything finished. I think it’s a mix of intense nesting instincts, knowing Kyle is going to start studying even more so I will lose help, and knowing that we are far behind where we were with Leah at this point. However, he (and his parents!) painted Quinn’s room for me this past weekend, and he says we can put furniture together next weekend. Yesssss. And I found the chair. It’s really coming together.
  • Leah has a new phrase, and it’s my favorite thing to roll out of her mouth. “Ano’er more” – as in another more. As in two. Not another one, or more, “ano’re more.” If she sees one car, and then another car she will squeal in delight – ano’er more! Makes me smile every time. Two is a lot of fun.
  • I sent Kyle this text this morning, “Lowes has those vent covers for like 2 bucks I think I’m gonna get a couple for the girls’ rooms so we can switch out the brown ones.” Do you see what’s so special about that sentence? I didn’t until after I sent it – and then my heart skipped a beat. The girls’ rooms. Girls! Two of them! Sisters! It just sounded so official, the girls’ rooms. I don’t think anyone could truly understand how excited I am. I don’t even know why I’m so excited myself, but I am. The girls, ahhh. Be still my heart.
  • Leah eats chicken now! Hallelujah. We have a very not forced eating policy in this house. No one has to finish a plate or eat something they hate. Everyone is, however, encouraged to try everything… a lot. And after two years (well really just one) she is finally chewing and swallowing chicken! It’s the first step in inviting meat into her life. Persistence is key; never give up.
  • I’m a muffin making fool. I learned in the last month just how much crap you can shove into a muffin without anyone knowing it. And by crap, I mean vegetables. My family has eaten zucchini, carrots, spinach, broccoli, flax, and whole wheat every single day without questioning it. I need ano’re more muffin pan!
  • I went down in the basement today and tore open Leah’s plastic tubs full of newborn-3 month clothes. There’s not a ton I can hand down to baby Quinn thanks to the difference in seasons, but I did find more than I thought I would. It was so fun to look through all of them though. I had a nice little emotional trip down memory lane. Mainly, I left with arms full of little footie jammies and a heart full of happiness that we get to enjoy a running, talking two year old and a squirmy, cooing newborn.
  • Quinn is still a nut, let no one forget. She works herself into great fits and then ends with giving herself the hiccups. I seem to remember that exact scenario playing out over and over when Leah lived in my belly. These girls. I’m not sure what to do with them.
  • Kyle and I have been researching trees and redoing our patio to make our backyard a little more comfortable and inviting. It’s a little weird that we’re old enough to enjoy looking at different trees and estimating the shade they’ll provide, and considering asking for stones for Christmas, but mainly it’s fun. I like playing house with him.

Alright, now you’re caught up and I’m feeling really guilty that no one has clean clothes.

See ya.

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Blogging is getting tricky now that I have two (well, kind of three) kids to talk about. If I wrote about all three of them in one blog it would be incredibly long, and when I split it up I can only write one so often without getting burnt out so it takes a while. However, I must tell you about Quinn.

Quinn Charlotte.

Chuck. (You remember – Charlotte, charlie, chuck).

She really is something. This entire pregnancy has been in stark contrast to Leah’s. And I could never get a feel for just what I was carrying. Leah I thought crazy and silly from the beginning. I just seemed to know about her, and so far I’ve been right. Quinn has been a different story. She’s something new every single day, and I haven’t been able to peg her down to a single word… until today.

She is intense, my friends.

She is a crazy mover, probably more so than Leah. Definitely tied. At the last doctor’s appointment she beat out Leah’s all time high heartbeat. She is always very close to the high side of the heartbeats – which is good, she’s strong – but she’s intense. My biggest craving, hot sauce, is about as intense as the condiments get. The crazy, violent, out of nowhere throwing up – pretty freaking intense. Let me remind you of the time I threw up all over myself driving down the road because there was absolutely nothing I could do about it. My weight gain… intense. My chest gain… intense.

Just as big sister did, Quinn does not stop moving. I wake up in the middle of the night – she’s up. Sitting on the couch in the middle of the afternoon – she’s up. Walking Duncan – she’s practically walking inside me. I really did expect her to be my lazy baby.

She is not my lazy baby.

Maybe that’ll be try number three.

So today we had another ultrasound – because the first one she was far too intense for anyone to see anything. The moving was truly out of control. I was almost embarrassed at how much she was misbehaving. Leah laid like a perfect little angel and let everyone see just what they needed to, when they needed to. Quinn let no one see anything the first time around. We didn’t even see her face because she covered it with her hands every time we tried to peek. So today was try number two after try number one was ruled incomplete. I was really hoping she would shape up this time. She didn’t. She was still a nut, absolutely. However, since they had to see her heart this time around we just had to wait her out. At one point the ultrasound tech just laid the doppler on my belly and said, “I’m just gonna sit here and wait her out.” And we did. And eventually she came around. God bless her, she’s a mess. This time was much more fun though, because although she was crazy, we got to see her cute little button nose that matches Leah’s. And her big belly. And I watched her leg kick me and felt it at the same time. She did a few flips and twists for us, and most importantly, everyone got to see her heart working so hard to keep up with her. At the end we got great pictures to show off, and I left feeling that things are officially real.

I got to see her face.

So with that we forge ahead. I had a minor (ok, major) freak out with Kyle yesterday. We are three weeks away from the third trimester (that’s the end!) and we have very little done. There is a dresser in her room that needs to get.out. I have to pick paint. Kyle has to paint. We have to put furniture together. I have to get my chair. I need a breastpump. Things just all of a sudden came crashing down on me. At this point with Leah she could have come and we had everything ready and in order. If Quinn came tomorrow… well. She better not. I guess it’s the poor second child syndrome – but man, I want to avoid it as much as possible. Leah and I bought her a few long sleeved things today to make me feel better, because really that’s all I can contribute at this point. Kyle has to help with the rest. And unfortunately (but extremely fortunately) he has a job.  So I’m left to sit all day and watch the two birds living in our Christmas wreath mock me as they make a perfect nest for their babies and I do nothing.

The good news is her bedding came today! Which means I can pick paint tomorrow! And Kyle can paint sooooon. And then furniture can go up. So I can see it coming together – it just needs to get there. I saw her face, now I’m desperate to make a home for her. Because I have a feeling when she comes… things are going to get intense around here. Tornadoes, firecrackers, tidal waves… in.tense. We need to be ready.

The world will need to be ready.


I teared up when I saw her little face. I love her in my belly, and she needs to stay put until November, but man my arms are crying out for her. 1lb 7oz of intensity. Wonderful intensity I might add. She makes me laugh just as much as Leah did. Why must we make maniac babies?!?! I blame their father, Lord knows I try my very hardest to be lazy all day long.


Proof that we are getting somewhere in getting prepared. She has bedding.


This shirt also made me tear up. Perhaps I’m just emotional today. But man I’m getting excited for sisters!


This picture is my absolute favorite from Leah’s birthday party. And here’s why: the entire time we were singing Happy Birthday (well, the entire day) Quinn was up to the usual crazy in my belly. When we were finished singing she was seriously out of control. I remember this moment so clearly, and I’m so happy it’s on camera so I can see what it looked like from the outside. Because inside I was so happy to be singing Happy Birthday to my big two year old, but I was also using my mind and my hand to tell her little sister to calm the heck down. That she would get cake soon. And that in November everyone would throw a big party just for her. But for now, to just settle down. I was feeling oh, so fulfilled at this very moment. Two happy, healthy, crazy little girls. I love them both so much.



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She’s Still Little.

Well now she’s just two.

The big day is over. The balloons deflated, some streamers fell, the wrapping paper that littered the floor is in the trash, and our two year old is snug in her bed. If it wasn’t such a wonderful week(end), I would probably be even more sad than I am. But the planning and dreaming and creating came to life – and Leah was a very happy little girl the past couple of days.

Birthday’s are a big deal to me. I think because my parents always made them a big deal for my sister and I. It’s a day you can focus only on one person… what they want. What they like. How to make them happy. To not worry about anything but a single, certain person. And I’ve learned that there is nothing more fun than celebrating a little life. A little life where everything is magic, everything is special, and everything is fun.

It was a good weekend to be a mom.

Our house practically vomited Winnie the Pooh and all his pals – and frankly, I’m having trouble taking things down. Duncan helped with some streamers this morning, and some balloons met their demise – but I think whatever can hang on will be allowed to. So what if there’s a Pooh banner exclaiming Happy Birthday to our little girl in a month – when it catches her eye she sparkles, points, and names her friends one by one. And if Tuck is still hanging in between the living room and dining room in a few weeks… so be it. He puts a happy mood into the place.

The decorations were everything I wanted. The party was fun. The food was plenty and good. The presents were many. But thankfully, Leah gave me a moment to realize just what was what.

Friday night, the night before the big party, when I had big plans of getting things in order for the big day – Leah halted everything. Thursday night, she got to stay up pretty late. And while she was a gem then, Friday night it caught up to her. Our little overtired bug needed some help falling asleep. And with thoughts of dishes that needed washing, floors that needed swept, presents that needed wrapping, and streamers that needed hanged – I scooped her up and took her to the rocking chair. As the seconds passed with her snuggled into my chest and legs draped down mine – my thoughts shifted from party madness to what a sweet little thing I was holding. Just how special she is. How much she has changed our lives in two years. How much she has changed in the last year. And what the future holds for us all.

And as pregnancy hormones or birthday sap got a hold of me, my eyes started leaking soft tears. I wanted her to have a fun party; to have a good birthday. But I just wanted her to know that I treasured holding her. That I was thankful for her happy little spirit every single day. That I actually hurt when she’s sad or hurt or scared. And that I’m incredibly proud of her at the end of each day. That I think she’s simply the best.

I sunk into that chair a little more and decided to get cozy with her. My mind wandered to everything she’s done this year. I guess they say the first year is the most incredible with the growth, and the developments, and the milestones – but I don’t know. I’ve been blown away by Leah this year. She started communicating with us – like two way conversations communicating. She can state her needs and pains. She can answer questions and do chores. She is the best somersault-er in her gymnastics class, there, I said it. She learned to sound like an elephant, snap like an alligator, and neigh like a horse. She became athletic and physical and coordinated. She learned how to initiate playing with kids. She picks out letters of the alphabet, colors, and numbers. She is just consumed with learning. And lest we forget, she potty trained herself three months ago.

She’s just had a rockstar of a year. And yet, she was still so small in that chair with me. Somehow it seemed like she still fit like she did two years ago (even with a Quinn between us), reminding me that however big she seems, she’s not done growing. She’s still just two. She’s far from done learning. There will be lots more to teach, and lots more to correct. A few more fits to get through, overtireds to rock through, and books to read through. She’s not finished throwing food, shredding toilet paper, emptying drawers just to empty them, or fake driving the car. She’s not finished running around the house naked, running around the yard naked, or chasing Duncan naked. She’s not finished giggling at silly faces and sounds, spinning until she falls over, or dancing in her underwear. She’s big, but she’s still little. She’s finished being one, but she’s certainly not finished being little. And she’s undoubtedly not finished impressing the pants off her mother.

When the rocking session was over, I laid her in her Pooh bed and crept out the door. I waited for her to fall the rest of the way asleep and walked back down to party madness. Except I didn’t accomplish one thing on my to-do list. I sat on the couch and relished in the fact that I got to rock my big, little girl to sleep. That she gets to turn another year older. That she is happy and healthy and strong and perfect.

We are lucky parents to have that kid and to watch all the funny little things she does. And we are excited to see what this third year might hold for her.

Happy Birthday for a final time this year, Leah.

Mama loves you.



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