Sunday, February 19, 2017


We depart for our annual trip to Wimberley in 3 weeks.  As part of the preparation I'd purchased and hidden a few new toys for Iyla that were meant to be revealed once we arrived to our rented log cabin home. This is something I've done every year, so she has some fun new items to enjoy while we are gone (and while I pack up pretty much ALL of her toys at home in anticipation of our SXSW renters!)

This year I'd hidden all items (a collection of small doggies, a collection of baby figurines, and 3 new books) in the back of our closet under several hats and behind a small toy chair.

While getting ready this morning, I noticed Iyla had disappeared and was nowhere to be found. It was SUSPICIOUSLY QUIET as I made my way through our bedroom searching for her. And lo and behold I finally found her in the back of the closet, staring with wonder at the package of small doggies.


As I walked into the closet I remarked something along the lines of: "oh no! Oh Iyla, those items were hidden because they are being saved as a special surprise for another time."

Her little face- I wish I could accurately capture it. She was quickly and keenly aware that she was into something she was not supposed to be into. She high-tailed it out of the closet with an expression of confusion and awe- and what I thought might be regret and possible sadness. So serious and stoic and wondrous was her face! I took her in my lap and explained that for special times like birthdays and trips sometimes Mama gets gifts ahead of time and has to hide them, and that I now realized I didn't do a very good job with choosing my hiding spot. I explained that we'd need to wait until our trip to Wimberley to play with those toys (which I qualified was still a long time away. Three weeks is a LONG TIME to a 4 year old!).

I asked her if she was feeling sad and she quickly defused the situation with a poop comment and giggle. She was obviously not damaged by the events! She appeared blown away by the fact that there was an incredible NEW TOY she really LOVED and WANTED hidden away that she had illicitly discovered and couldn't yet have.

Iyla is such an observant, intelligent kid. At Christmas she was already onto the fact that the Santas she saw around town were DIFFERENT PEOPLE and asked me if indeed there were a lot of Santas. I told her that yes, there ARE a lot of Santas! To which she matter of factly replied: "yes, but the Santa at the Driskill is the NORMAL ONE."


For now, I have promptly re-hidden all Wimberley toys in a spot that hopefully Iyla won't be able to find and that hopefully I'll remember to locate when we are finally packing for our trip!

I'm sure this won't be the last time hidden treasures are prematurely found- I'll definitely be upping my hiding game from this point on.

Oh Iyla Grace, you keep us on our toes in a good way! Now stop digging through Mama's things. ; )

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Jammed and Tired

BC and I were talking the other night about what a toll kids have on us physically. He's been suffering from tennis elbow due to carrying our Giant Baby around, and I've got the whole gamut of postpartum fun:

*Hair loss & increased graying of hair
*Extra weight (and clothes not quite fitting right)
*Continual hip issues (on days my hips feel normal I'll go for a walk, then without fail that walk messes them up again)
*Constant fatigue

And now, adding to this list, I have the pleasure of a jammed (or sprained? strained?) thumb. I'm pretty sure the injury occurred during Eloise's first swim lesson, as holding a Giant Baby throughout a 30 minute lesson is NOT for the weak of thumb.

Me: 0
Giant Baby: 1

It turns out being able to use one's (dominant) thumb is critically important in ways I hadn't realized, such as:

*Twisting baby bottle tops on and off
*Brushing teeth
*Pushing the home button on a phone
*Doing a child's hair
*Wiping one's bottom, or someone else's bottom
*Holding a Giant Baby and switching said baby from side to side for nursing
*Undoing the clasps on a nursing bra
*Undoing the back of a pumping bra
*Squeezing ANYTHING (toothpaste, face wash, dish soap, diaper cream, etc)
*Using a pen or pencil
*Turning a key in a lock or ignition
*Turning a deadbolt

To add insult to injury, last month in a Feng Shui induced frenzy I deep cleaned all of our bathroom cabinets and in the purge threw out both of the thumb/wrist splints I had stored from back in my Mommy Thumb days.


This did NOT bode well for my hoarder-esque personality, as now I am seriously cursing that cleaning purge and questioning what else I might be throwing out that down the road might be necessary (because isn't having 50+ gift bags stored away absolutely necessary?).

On top of the jammed thumb, I've also been SO TIRED this week due to the Giant Baby starting to sleep through the night.

That may seem ironic, given "sleeping through the night" typically means, well, everyone is sleeping through the night. However, Eloise's "sleeping through the night" equates to sleeping 7:30pm-5:30am.


A time at which I fully believe no normally functioning human should be awake, at least not in this family.

Work that coffee cup kid! We both need it with these early morning wake-ups.

So the other night I decided to fight fire with fire and put myself to sleep at 8:15pm.

Yes, 8:15pm. Desperate times, you know?

I was 4 hours into this blissful head start on my night's sleep when I was SCARED SH**LESS startled by a small human standing beside my bed, stating through tears that her knee hurt.


After comforting, medicine, & putting her back to bed, I finally climbed into bed ready to get back to my beauty sleep.

Not so much.

That little human reappeared 15 minutes later saying that she now had to go potty. Ironically enough, BC had JUST given her a flashlight earlier that evening toward helping with this sort of thing, speaking in earnest with her about being able to use it to take herself to the bathroom at night. And as we groggily made our way to her bathroom together, she cheerfully remarked: "good thing I have my flashlight so WE can see!"

Us: 0
Tiny Human: 1

Then there was much comforting & re-settling her into bed AGAIN.

Aaaaaaand, 15 minutes later she reappeared by my side, saying that she missed me.

Very sweet, but NOOOOOO.

 It's a good thing she is SO CUTE. I mean c'mon, braids and dinosaurs? 
Fine. You can get up all night long.

We then commenced 2 more hours of snuggling and trying to sleep together in my bed (lest she keep coming back in)- which historically NEVER works for either of us and proved yet again true.

Eventually I was able to convince the tiny human to go back to sleep in her own bed and happily returned to mine, only to be awaken 2 hours later- promptly at 5:30am- by the Giant Baby.

Me: 0
Giant Baby: 2

SO TIRED. And my thumb hurts.

***UPDATE: The tiny human is actually sick, as upon school pick up yesterday was complaining of body aches & running a 102+ temp. Poor buddy! Now it's all hands (minus a thumb) on deck to make sure the rest of the family stays healthy and (knocking on wood) mostly rested.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

First Foods

Last week at Eloise's 6 month appointment we got the green light to start trying out solid foods, so away we went!

This kid has been telling us in more ways than one that she was ready!
"If you won't give me solids, I'll just eat my toes, thank you very much."

With Iyla we had tried avocado as her first food, which she HATED it and continues to hate. Thus I decided with Eloise we'd start with more of a fan favorite: carrots. She LOVED them! This is a kid who appears to love anything that resembles food (up until now breast milk, formula, medicine, and vitamins)- so I was not surprised that she took to eating actual food with the same gusto.


After 2 days of carrots, I decided we should at least TRY avocado. I wouldn't say Eloise loved it as much as carrots (who can blame her? Avocados are pretty bland comparatively speaking)- but she definitely ate them much more readily than her big sister ever did.

Next up on the menu are sweet potatoes, which I suspect will also be a big hit.

Such a fun new adventure with our littlest lady!

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Swimming and Sister Love

After 6 months of watching her big sister in the pool, Eloise had her very first swim lesson last week! She did very well. Her facial expression remained serious and curious throughout most of the class - toward the end I think she'd had enough water time, as she began to get a little fussy. Her favorite parts were when the teacher (our beloved Mr. John) sang songs- this kid definitely loves music!

Of course I had to take some photos to document this momentous occasion:

Her face! Looking annoyed at Mama's selfies. Or my impossible-to-contain cleavage.

Later that day, there was a whole lot of CUTE going down with Eloise and Iyla snuggling in the playroom. Those two truly adore one another!

And a few more of sweet Eloise for good measure:

Next week in swim class Eloise will go under water for the first time. I'm so curious to see if she ends up loving to swim as much as Iyla always has! Time will tell....

Sunday, January 22, 2017

6 Months Old!

Sweet Eloise Jane, today you are 6 months old!

You continue to be such a happy, laid back, smiley little girl who is very observant of the world around you. This past month brought a LOT of growth for you, especially in the sleep department! Here are your official 6 month updates.

How old? 6 months old!

How big?

*At your 6 month appointment you weighed in at 17#12.4oz (77%) and were 27.5 inches tall (95%). Your head circumference was 17 1/8 inches.

You are still what we joke is our "Giant Baby," given your big sister Iyla always measured TINY! For comparison, here is HER post & stats from 6 months old:

You have almost 6 pounds and 2.5 inches on her at the same age!

*You are comfortably fitting into 9-12 month clothing and are between a size 3-4 diaper.

Here's another fun side by side size comparison with your big sister. Same 9 month outfit, Iyla on the left wearing it at 11 months old and you on the right at 5.5 months!

*Also of note: BABY THIGHS. Oh, the delicious rolls on those thighs of yours! Your big sister never really developed rolls, so I am nibbling on yours every single chance I get. They are the BEST!

Sleep? This was a BIG month in the sleep department for you! You went through official sleep training and now go to bed sweetly and peacefully around 7pm. For awhile you were only waking up one time at night to nurse (around 1:30-2am) but the last couple of nights you have been pulling the 2x/night gig again, around 11:45pm and 4:30am.

You are usually ready for a 1st nap 1.5-2 hours after waking, then 2.5-3 hours after that nap an afternoon nap occurs. These range from 30 minutes to 2 hours depending on the day! There is usually another 30 minute nap in the late afternoon.

Your sleep routine is to nurse (or have a bottle before bed), get a diaper change, get into your sleep sack, then be carried to your room where we turn on the sound machine & close your curtains. We sing 1-2 songs while cuddling and then I lay you down drowsy but awake. You almost always roll immediately to your side (you're a side sleeper!) and put your thumb in your mouth (no more pacifiers!). Then you'll either go right to sleep or will rock yourself side to side until you fall asleep.

I swear you know we're watching you....

Eating? You typically nurse every 2 to 2.5 hours, though in the past few days you've pushed the time between feeds back to 3-4 hours. You occasionally will get a formula bottle on days when your appetite exceeds my supply. Before bed I'll nurse you in the bath then also give you a bottle of 3-4 more ounces (which you easily polish off!).

We are going to start solid foods with you in the next couple of weeks after we get the green light from your doctor. I have a feeling you will LOVE this adventure! You are entranced every time we eat and always watch in earnest as food goes from our plates to our mouths.


*This month you've started doing "mama" and "baba" sounds. Your babbling is now starting to sound like an actual conversation!

Telling me something really important

New interests/skills? 

*You've been exploring textures and objects a lot more over the last week, studying things intently first through touch and then through taste!

*You've starting batting and slapping at things in a rhythmic motion.

*You've recently realized you can SPLASH in the bath! You start swimming lessons next week and I suspect you will love those!

*You are rolling a lot more from your back to your tummy (always to the right). You will hang out there for a little while before getting stuck and starting to complain, as you haven't mastered rolling back down yet!

*Holding your bottle. You like to "help" and still love taking milk from bottles!

*Your big sister Iyla makes you laugh like no other. In the bath she spits water onto your belly and you erupt in long giggle fits. The same thing happens when she plays peek-a-boo with you. You two just adore one another, which never ceases to make my Mama heart swell.

*You've gotten so much better on walks and in the car, and are able to be awake and content for much longer periods! Now if we could just get my hips to cooperate more so those walks can become a regular event....

*Your hands are CONSTANTLY in your mouth. All day every day. I'm curious when your first official tooth might come through!

*You got to meet my dearest friend Jenny this past month. She came and stayed with us for a long weekend, and both you and Iyla were smitten. It was so sweet to see.

Selfie with Auntie Jenny

Favorite things?

*Your teething sticks
*A blue teething ring that has different textures on it
*Your teething necklace beads
*Your big sister
*Being outside

When big sister's away, you get into her toys and play!

Daily Schedule

*Wake anywhere in the 6- 7:30 range.

*1.5-2 hours after waking, 1st nap. If this happens in your car seat on the way to Iyla's school, it's 30 minutes to the minute. At home, it can often be 1-2 hours long.

*After your nap, there is 2-3 hours of play time, where you rotate through several baby stations at home- each lasting about 5-10 minutes. These include:

-Your Bumbo chair & play table
-Your baby swing
-Playing on the back porch
-Your exersaucer
-Your play mat
-Your high chair
-Your Bjorn chair 
-A blanket & toys on the floor

*After about 2.5 hours of play time you're ready for a 2nd nap, which ranges usually from 40 minutes to 1.5 hours.

*After the 2nd nap, there is about 2 more hours of play time until a 3rd catnap in the afternoon.

*Bedtime in the 6:45-7:15pm range.

How's Mama?

*My cycle made a momentous return this past month. This was the exact same time- around 5.5- 6 months postpartum- that it returned after having Iyla!

*Overall my hips are doing much better, though having said that my left hip has again been off the past couple of days, making it really hard to walk.

*My headaches have gotten much better! I think the myofascial work in addition to the increased sleep has worked wonders for my overall health.

My sweet girls

Here are a few more photos from your past month:


You have the most INCREDIBLE big blue eyes, which we can thank your Papa for!

Happy 6 months sweet Eloise Jane! 
We love you so, so much and can't wait to see what the next month has in store.