Saturday, July 12, 2014

20 Months Old!

Sweet Iyla Grace, today you are 20 months old! You grow up more every single day, and we are delighting in all of your new adventures. Current words I'd use to describe you include sweet, affectionate, giving, silly, focused, careful, clumsy (you fall off things a lot and seem to have two left feet!), impatient, easily frustrated, super smart, engaging, playful, routine oriented, & particular about what people you warm up to quickly & prefer to spend time with. It is so fun to watch you evolve into a little person with her own preferences, opinions, likes, & dislikes!

How old? 20 months today

How big? Here are a few with Sam…

Petting the kitty is such hard work

Teeth? You have 7: 4 on top and 3 on the bottom. You love getting your teeth brushed, and we do this 2-3x/day, usually after your milk.

Teeth and awesome hair

Food? A new love this month is what you call "meatballs." This can be either sausage taken off a pizza or breakfast sausage. You LOVE edamame, sweet corn, watermelon, blueberries, muffins, & of course your scrambled eggs.

Sleep? Still (*knocking on wood*) great and consistent. You wake around 7am, nap from 12:30-3, and go to bed at 7:30. You seem to really enjoy your quiet alone time in your crib before and/or after sleeping.

Words? Your vocabulary has continued to astound us! From what I can tell you are quite ahead of the curve with your language development. This month you went from 2 word phrases to 3-5 or more! You are also coming up with original sentences that communicate your desires, such as:

"Iyla go back Mommy's house"
"Iyla go back Mommy now."
"Be right back."
"Don't have to."

Other cute things you started this month were saying "hi, hello!" when greeting someone and saying "yeah" when we ask you questions about your day (such as: "Iyla, did you play with Veronica today?" "Yeah!"). So cute.

Your annunciation is excellent and you repeat any and everything you hear. We had 13 family members staying with us over the weekend, and you quickly learned every person's name and used them regularly. You loved looking around the room and naming people, requesting that they play games with you. You are quite the charmer!

Potty Time? I've been keeping you diaper-free pretty constantly when we are at home. You hardly have any accidents- you'll say "pee, poo!" then run to the potty and go, or if it's been awhile I'll ask if you want to go potty and you'll run in and usually pee. It definitely helps that your very favorite books are located next to your potty; you'll often will say "pee, poo!" when Papa or I are busy (eating, cleaning, cooking, etc)- but then not go at all! You know this time gives you a captive audience reading your most precious books. And we're onto you...

Favorite things?

*MOMMY. We are still full on in a MOMMY phase, where I am the preferred buddy at any given time. If anyone tries to get in the way of that you can throw down a pretty impressive tantrum. In the series of photos below, you can see your adorable pout face when you say "Mommymommymommy."

*Anything from the movie Tangled. This is your new obsession! You could watch Tangled song clips and/or the movie and constantly ask "watch Tangled?" I just got you an adorable set of miniature dolls from the movie that instantly became favorites.

Tangled clips with Papa

Cousin Liam joined in for this Tangled matinee. His hand on your leg! Melt.

*Your fairy dolls. We have 2 now, and you love to make them fly and dance.

*Your new bathroom step stool. You like practicing climbing up to wash your hands- but I have to watch you like a hawk, because you've already tumbled back down it a few times, and also tend to bump your head on the sink above. None of this, however, deters you from trying again.

*Mornings with Papa. You two have a weekend routine where you'll ride bikes to get breakfast tacos, juice, and then play at the park. You adore this time, and adore your Papa!

*Googly Eyes. Kind of a hilarious back story here. You LOVE looking at photos on my phone, and sometimes we will just scroll through Facebook talking about the photos we see. One day a picture of a friend of mine on a beer crawl came up- where he and all his friends were dressed as minions with big googly eyes. I started calling them "googly eyes" and you thought that was HILARIOUS, and constantly requested to see the photos. I then printed some out and put them in a binder, which is now your "Googly Eye Book." You also request that people "do Googly Eyes," which means they put up their hands like fake glasses over their eyes and exclaim "GOOGLY EYES!" You never cease to be entertained by this.

The photo that started it all

Googly Eye Book viewing #1,056

*'Playing the 'Where's Iyla?' game. You love when people hide behind something like a couch, blanket, or even their hands- and peek out at you! You also love wrapping yourself in our shower curtain and exclaiming "where's Iyla?"

*Swimming! You were a little fish in Houston last weekend, jumping in all by yourself over and over and over again. You also went on your first boat ride while family was here.

I wore out before you did with this jumping session! You couldn't get enough.

Pre-boat cuddles with Mimi and Grampy, who you have decisively renamed "Butt-Butt." We think it originated from playing with his shirt buttons at Easter, and it has definitely stuck!

'Wassup? I'm about to go on a BOAT with my Butt-Butt!'

Least favorite things?

*Not getting exactly what you want when you want it. The tantrums have increased in frequency and intensity, and can be pretty hilarious.

Tragic adorable pout-face

"Don't have to!"

*Mosquito Bites. Ok- so you don't seem to mind them at all. But your sensitive skin sure does! Any bites received swell up into huge red welts that last for several days. Apparently you are too delicious to resist, despite our religious application of mosquito repellent.

Here are a few more photos from your last month. We love you SO much, sweet Iyla Grace, and give thanks every single day to have you in our lives. How lucky we are!

Rare family (selfie) photo from our trip to Houston

Soft grass at Mimi and Grampy's!

Elevator ride at our beloved historic Driskill Hotel

You love the new photo wall Papa put up in the guest room

Happy 20 months, sweet girl!

Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy 4th of July!

The 4th of July has evolved over the years into a big family reunion weekend for us. Yesterday our Midwestern clan arrived, and today we will all head to my parent's house in Houston for another round of festivities. Saturday we'll return home, and by Sunday the Houston folks will join in for more celebrating at our house here in Austin.

I was a little nervous about how Iyla would do with all of the company, given her recent affinity for all things MOMMY. I shouldn't have worried. That kid caught on quickly, realizing everyone here was completely in love with her and willing to play with and entertain her! Her 21 month old cousin Liam is also staying with us, which just adds to the cute toddler overload. It's been lovely, and I look forward to the rest of the extended weekend.

In other news, my cycle did officially start again yesterday- as I suspected it would. Upward and onward we go to NYC, and to continuing to trust things will happen in their right time (though admittedly my psychotic TTC brain has started to reemerge, definitely making its sense of urgency known).

Here are a few parting shots of sweet Iyla G from our day together yesterday- she was such a sweet buddy! 

Breakfast out with Mama MOMMY

Splash pad fun! The only way to truly be outside in our 100+ degree summers.

Uncle Terry!

Bath time with Cousin Liam

And a series I like to call "Iyla Grace thinks Cousin Matt is HILARIOUS." He was hamming it up for her in the bathroom doorway while also taking pictures. That little girl was in heaven!

Happy 4th of July everyone! 

Monday, June 30, 2014

Another Dream

Last night a baby girl who was clearly our daughter appeared in my dream. She looked exactly how I'd pictured her-  chubby with a full head of thick hair (of course she looked like I'd pictured, right? It was MY subconscious dreaming her up). There was also something to do with the date July 11th, which I took note of. This is the very first time I've dreamt of babe #2, and I took it as an auspicious sign that perhaps his/her journey to us is near.

I should also point out that Iyla appeared to me in a dream about 3 weeks before we conceived her….

Worth the wait

I had fun this cycle obsessing over every.little.thing, since the anty was upped with the Femara and IUI. I Googled endless DPO sign threads and paid crazy attention to every twitch and tingle in my body. I do still feel very Zen about this process, and keep faith that another babe will come to us. I have learned I can do everything humanly possible to call that little one in- but that in the end, they will come when THEY are good and ready.

Having said all that, I unfortunately think this cycle is a bust. I had pink spotting at 5dpo with light brown since then- and today at 8dpo there was a significant swipe of red blood in the morning. It seems really early for my cycle to be starting (and would be an extremely short luteal phase!), but alas- it appears that's what may be happening.

The lovely silver lining this month? Our upcoming trip to New York City in TWO WEEKS!

I plan to fully partake in cocktails.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Human Velcro

What exactly is human velcro, you ask?

Well, for the last week, human velcro = Iyla Grace.

We had family over one week ago for dinner & drinks (the night of my cousin's auspicious pregnancy test)… and Iyla G, out of nowhere, started whining "Mommymommymommy" over and over and over again. First of all, she's NEVER called me Mommy before. Up until that point I'd been "Mama." Secondly, the clingy need-to-be-constantly-glued-to-my-side made it extremely difficult to eat, socialize, relax, etc.

This behavior has now continued all week long.

Typically when our sweet nanny arrives, there is some creative distraction required to help transition Iyla. This week, however, Iyla upped the anty. She was not having any of our old tricks. There was full on climbing all over me, sobbing, and throwing herself to the ground. It has been difficult and heart tugging to say the least, as I absolutely HATE to leave her when she is in that state.

That being said, sources report that within minutes of my finally leaving, she is just fine.

Our nanny texted this picture to me after a particularly demonstrative morning protest. Here's Iyla happily back snacking at her play kitchen. Stinker!

I used to love checking in on the nanny and Iyla when I would come and go during the day, but this week stopping to check in on them has lead to trauma & tantrums. So I need to come up with a new battle plan; namely, my staying AWAY until I am actually taking over toddler duties.

And that whole "Mommymommymommy" thing? It's like Iyla's new mantra. I have officially become MOMMY to her, and with that title comes enormous expectation. MOMMY needs to be there playing with Iyla at all times. MOMMY cannot leave to cook food, clean up, or use the restroom. MOMMY cannot talk to other people. And MOMMY is definitely not allowed to leave the house.

This new turn of behavior has me extremely nervous for our upcoming NYC trip. I have to keep faith that once I am GONE Iyla will adjust and do just fine, but the leaving part is going to be tough. I'm also not sure Facetiming will be wise, given it may confuse and upset her further. Boo!

Oh, sweet baby girl… I LOVE that you are loving your MOMMY so much right now, but boy do I hope this is a short lived phase. And boy are you lucky you're cute!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

A Hopeful Frou-Frou Post

You may recall that I have a cousin who has an uncanny ability to predict my pregnancies. Both times I've been pregnant, she had vivid dreams and KNEW before I even knew myself.

When we were in Vegas, she had another vivid dream. Here is the email she sent me on April 2nd, 2014:

So, this could be my crazy subconscious mixing up thoughts of our other cousin's awesome pregnancy news, seeing pictures of my parents with Iyla (the one of my dad just melted my heart) and being habitually late almost every month this year BUT the dream I had last night...

The same colors and vividness of my previous "predictions." 

We were pregnant together, our due dates were the same, and we were driving in a car talking (like my dream with you and our other cousin driving in a car talking about how awesome it was that you were pregnant at the same time). Iyla may have been a little bit older, but it couldn't have been by much because her hair was the same (yes they are that vivid).

I actually had my baby, and dreamt every detail of the labor too- it was crazy. It was a little boy and it is truly amazing the feelings and the love you can actually feel in just a dream.  

Well that sounded crazy, and it probably is- another thought though, I dreamt my last dream of your pregnancy with Iyla while you were on vacation with BC ;)

Last night, upon hearing that this cousin was a few days late on her cycle (she was over with her family for dinner/drinks) her sister and I ushered her into the bathroom to take a pregnancy test, which immediately popped up "PREGNANT." Cue a lot of shock on her part, excitement on mine… because I totally remembered her dream.

And? This morning I got my positive LH surge. Of COURSE! BC's troops have been collected and dropped off, and in 2 hours I will have an IUI. How's that for timing? I think as soon as my cousin saw the word "Pregnant" my ovaries started firing.

My cousin said that if I do get pregnant this cycle it definitely confirms her psychic abilities…so we shall see! I am absolutely still very Zen about it all, knowing another babe- if meant to be- will come in his/her own time.

But dang if there isn't a brilliant rainbow over my head right now with hundreds of unicorns jumping over it! 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Femara & IUIs & Mommy Thumb, Oh My!

A few updates from the past week...

We re-discovered sweet Iyla G has an intolerance for tomatoes. She had a handful of bites at dinner (and loved them!) and within 30 minutes was screaming in abdominal pain, which resulted in diarrhea. I couldn't stomach tomatoes when pregnant, and highly suspected sensitivities with her when I ate them while breastfeeding. Poor buddy! This on top of a nasty cold I gave to both BC and Iyla.

BC comforting our sad baby girl post tomatoes

I finally had surgery on my Mommy Thumb Friday! I had to be put completely under and wear a huge bandage for 3 days with very limited use of my right hand. Slowly but surely I am getting more and more movement and use of my hand, and am optimistic that this will solve the problem once and for all.

Iyla saying "kiss boo-boo!" She has been so sweet.

I visited good 'ole Dr. Vaughn for the first time in over 2 years! He was as sweet & feisty as ever. Took a look at Franny- who has definitely grown a bit- but who Dr. Vaughn still feels is better left alone than dealing with surgery to remove (yay!). We are going full steam ahead, and the day of my appointment I began taking Femara and we will do a Femara/IUI cycle this month. The current plan is June Femara/IUI, July Femara/intercourse (given our trip to NYC), and if nothing has taken at that point, possibly moving to a Gonal-F injectables cycle/IUI in August. 

BC asked if I thought all of this was needed to get pregnant, given our history (3 years of SO many medicated/IUI cycles, then ultimately conceiving naturally on our own). My response and overall attitude? Who knows, but why not? I am ready to be proactive. I feel much less desperation this time around than I did before we had Iyla, and am hopeful I can keep this relaxed, low stress attitude as we move forward. I feel excited and ready to rock n roll toward baby #2! We've been actively trying for a year since my cycle returned, and for almost 6 months since I stopped breastfeeding. Giving a little extra UMPH to the process definitely can't hurt.

Iyla has been growing up daily, and it constantly amazes me! This morning while having her milk, she opened up her hand and I said to her (as I always do)- "those are your fingers!" To which she replied "need cut nails." Ha! Yesterday I had told her we needed to cut her nails (and we did), and that little bugger remembered and thought she'd ask about it again today.

She also showed me that she can now climb up on park benches, thank you very much! Big girl.

So proud

Feeling so much gratitude and appreciation daily for all things in my life- the sweet sense of balance between work, family, and "me" time… and of course, for this darling little girl. We are blessed!