Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Six Months with Miss June

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My mom took these pictures one afternoon while I was at work and I thought I would share a few and hit the highlights on what's been going on in June's little world.

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Our Junie girl turned 6 months old on September 1st. How she is already halfway to one years old, I have no idea. She is pure joy! I literally cannot get enough of her.

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She is a happy girl. She loves to meet new people and absolutely LOVES other babies. She giggles a lot and sometimes I think she has a little angel friend with her that she smiles and laughs with... We'll be riding down the road and she'll be in the back just cracking up and I'm like, "what in the world is so funny?!"

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She has one little bottom tooth that broke through the surface last week. She has had two very mild fever viruses in these six months. We have been exclusively breastfeeding/pumping (at work) and as of last week, she has started eating mashed up versions of what is on our lunch/dinner plate. She has such a fun time sitting at the dinner table and eating what we are eating!

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She is such a little lady and her mannerisms are so feminine and sweet. When she wants/needs something, instead of whining or crying she starts this laughing/coughing thing and we say it's her very polite way of saying, "Ok Mom, I'm over it... and I'm about to start crying/squealing soon if I don't get some help over here!" But don't get me wrong... she has her meltdown moments... Like how she has recently started having a meltdown every night after her bath... While I know it is because she is hungry and tired, it kills me how everything is great in the world while she's in the tub, but as soon as I taker her out and start getting her dressed in her pajamas, you would think I was sawing her arm off!

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Some days it is like she learned certain movements overnight because she literally wakes up doing something new. Just this past week she has started getting on all fours and rocking back and forth like she wants to crawl...

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She is sleeping on average about 12 straight hours at night and takes a 1-2 hour nap in the mornings and a 2-3 hour nap in the afternoons. Sometimes she needs a little 30-45 min cat nap in the evening so she can make it to her bedtime usually around 8:30pm. We keep about 4 "loveys" in her crib and she "nurses" them to sleep. It is the cutest thing... I was so sad that she wouldn't ever take a pacifier as a newborn but eventually I realized that she wanted something soft on her face to suck on and her little loveys work like a charm!

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She is always playing the "itsy bitsy spider" with her hands and when I start singing the song to her I sometimes get this face... Ha! ;)

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She is my darling girl... my pride and joy. These six months have been the absolute best... not easy, but oh so sweet. And yes, I nearly eat her alive every single day because she is so edible!

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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Good Things

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This past Saturday was the first day since maternity leave that I have actually laid down on the couch and read a book. It was wonderful. Yes, I'm working "full time" (three hard 12 hr shifts a week) but on my days off, we have literally filled them to the brim with breakfast/lunch/dinner dates, play dates, beach/pool time, hosting friends and family, cleaning/laundry/organizing, kissing Junie's cheeks, you name it... all good things. These good things, while so fun, can be quite exhausting.

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Spending quality time with "my people" is a major priority in my day to day life. However, I need days like Saturday where I stay home and simply lay low.

Our Junie girl is growing so fast as all little ones seem to do... I am literally trying to savor every cuddle, kiss, diaper change, giggle, bath time, feeding... every moment, because motherhood has taken my sentimental personality up about 1 million notches. I'm beginning to realize that the reason our babies grow so fast is because they just aren't babies for very long!

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Here are a few photos from what we've been up to this summer...

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{Family pool time}

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{Play dates with Courtney and Harlan}

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{Fun whirlwind weekends with Jane Gray and James and Brad, Emily, Tucker and Tanner.}

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{An overnight trip to NOLA to spend time with Rex, one of our best friends from baseball life.}

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{A weekend trip to Birmingham to see Garth Brooks in concert with Courtney and Clay and our first night away from the babes... everyone did fine and June and Harlan received good reports from the grandparents. Honestly, Court and I didn't worry... we just scrolled through pictures on our phone the entire road trip missed them of course!}

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{A picture of my dessert plate from my birthday brunch. I have to add salty bites to cut the sweet... anyone else like that?}

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{More fun play dates with friends!}

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... and June thinks she's all big rolling over and trying to sit up like a big girl... Her Daddy and her Bri teach her all these new tricks while Mama is at work... and while little milestones are great and everything, it means she's getting big and that is a hard pill to swallow!

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Onto another "good thing" going on right now...

I have always said that when I turned 30, I would "get serious" about preventing wrinkles. Well I have just turned 28 this month and I have already started noticing laugh lines around my eyes and some fine lines creeping up on my forehead {yay for bangs!}.

For the past several months, I have been enjoying all of the "before and after" pictures my friend and sorority sister Barbara has been posting about this skincare line called Rodan + Fields and I decided to join her team as an independent consultant last month! Now, I have kept a little quiet about it because I wanted to use the product and see results for myself... well I have come to the conclusion that these products are fabulous. There are four different skin care regimens that treat all kinds of skin issues like acne, wrinkles, sensitivity and dark spots... something for everyone! They were formulated by the dermatologists that created the Proactiv skin care line, Dr. Katie Rodan and Dr. Kathy Fields.

Here are some of the transformations that had me sold:

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So now I can share the products/business with others, use the products at a great discount and I am able to make some extra income along the way. It is totally a win/win since I can do this business at home or on the go and still keep my time with Aaron and June.

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So yes, lots of good things happening right now... I would say I'm trying to stay "balanced" through it all but honestly, I want my life to be heavy on the family and friends time and lighter on everything else... That is what I will continue to strive for. Thanks for reading, readers!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Life with June Denson: Twelve Things for Twelve Weeks

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Well, life as we have always known it has changed... and in the absolute best way possible. How could a measly little blog post even attempt to tell all about our new life with little Miss June? There is so much to say...

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Motherhood has not exactly been easy, but my love for her makes it possible and turns this full time job into such a JOY. It has taken me a little while, but I'm getting to know her better everyday... her little routine she naturally falls into during the day, her different cries to tell me what she needs, when she wants to be held and when she is simply content to play independently. In an effort to organize my millions of thoughts that I could write down, I decided to list twelve little facts {with pictures of course} about June and explain them each.

1. She is so loved.

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Well that's an obvious one, I know. Aaron and I have been so amazed how you can love someone so much that you've only known for a few days/weeks/months! It is a different kind of love that we've never felt before and it is fierce and unconditional. She is our treasure and we cherish her so. We just can't help but hug and kiss her all the time. On the night she was born and it was just the three of us in the hospital room, with every little noise/face she made we would just look at each other and gush over her. We were giddy... and we still are! She makes my heart want to explode every single day.

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2. She is active and strong. 

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This little turkey has not stopped moving probably since the minute she grew arms and legs in the womb. I remember wondering if it was normal for a baby to move so much during pregnancy... and then she was born and hasn't stopped wiggling since. She runs in place when you lay her down, she was holding her head up on her own {when alert or hungry} at 2 weeks old and in an effort to get out of tummy time, she started rolling over from her tummy to her back at 3 weeks old. Where there's a will there's a way I guess... and Lord knows she's got a will. Ha! When you go to pick her up, her whole body tenses up like she's "helping" you. When she's hungry she gets abnormally strong and literally hangs on so tight to my arms and neck that I barely have to hold her! As Aaron's uncle said... she's a pistol!

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3. She loves to eat.

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I think this is true of most babies but... you know those baby books that talk about how you shouldn't let your newborn go more than 3 hours without eating so you should wake them up to eat? Well, my little piglet was STARVING every two hours {during growth spurts, every hour} and I think I could count on one hand the number of times I had to wake her up to eat. I remember telling a friend {who has 5 kids} how exhausted I was because June was such a vigorous little eater and may have even said that I felt like she was "sucking the life out of me" and without hesitation she said, "Wow, that's great that she is such a good eater!" And I thought, "Wait a minute... she's right. I could be stressing about failure to thrive... so I have every reason to be thankful for my exhaustion and her weight gain."  Talk about a perspective changer. My goal is to breastfeed June for at least one year.. but we're taking it one month at a time. I had a case of mastitis the first week and the pain during feedings was pretty close to excruciating for the first three weeks. However, it did get better slowly but surely... just like those veteran moms told me it would. Take heart new moms! 

4. She is social. 

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June will smile and "talk" to anyone but when she sees another baby or child she lights up. It's like she knows another "little person" when she sees them. Remember baby Harlan? He's not so little any June and Harlan are best buds just like their moms. She is sooooo happy when she wakes up in the mornings. I hear her in her nursery just talkin' and laughing' and occasionally she'll holler out just to see if anyone will come get her... and when you do, she smiles so big and then giggles... Talk about the best feeling in the world. She also looooves to see herself in the mirror... she talks and laughs and it is quite entertaining to watch.

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5. She is well traveled.

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In her twelve weeks of life, June has traveled to Mississippi several times, the huntin' camp, Florida, Louisiana and Tennessee. We have gone to see "Mimi and GrandStan" in Mississippi, a wedding in Destin, and we've accompanied Aaron on a couple of turkey hunting trips. Traveling with a newborn definitely made us take a more relaxed approach to travel. Which brings me to my next bullet...

6. She hates her carseat.

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You know those babies who need to get in their carseat and ride around in the car to fall asleep? Yeah, June is the opposite. I think it's the confining aspect of the carseat that she hates... and it can't be comfortable! She likes to be able to change positions when she sleeps and likes to be held when she's really tired so the carseat has been a struggle for us with all of the traveling we've been doing. I hear they grow out of it?? She's been doing a little better lately but she still doesn't like it.

7. She loves to be bounced.

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I'm not sure if it's because I was in constant motion during the day while I was pregnant with her or what, but the child loooooves to be bounced. When she's fussy, being bounced is the only way to soothe her... although now she loves to suck on a "lovey". She could care less about being rocked {unfortunately} and she knows when you sit down! Needless to say, I get a good leg workout a couple times a day. She also doesn't like to be cradled like a baby and what is hilarious is that Aaron is the ONLY person she will let hold her that way {see above pic}... He can put her to sleep instantly if he adds a little bounce to his step... She also loves riding around like a papoose in my wrap. 

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8. She has acid reflux.

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Bless her heart... she is a spit up queen. I feel like she has a bib on 24/7 but it's easier to change out bibs than outfits you know? I noticed her starting to spit up around 1 week old and she hasn't stopped. Thankfully, it has not affected her weight gain but the acid part of the reflux has caused her quite a bit of pain. We started her on a small dose of Zantac daily and that has made all the difference for her. She still spits up the same amount but the pain is gone which makes June and my Momma heart feel better. She is now eating larger amounts every 4 hours during the day and I think that also helps because her tummy gets a little break instead of continuously digesting food with her previous every {2-3 hr} schedule.

9. She is a good sleeper.

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She loves to sleep with her hands by her face. In all of our ultrasound pictures, she had her hands there too. During those first several weeks I didn't think the every 2-3 hour night feedings would ever stretch out but we finally turned the corner {consistently} at around 9 weeks old. Now at 12 weeks, an ideal day {basically when we stay at home} she will take a 2-3 hour nap in the morning and a 2-3 hour nap in the afternoon with a little catnap in the evening so she can make it to her bedtime around 8:30. She then sleeps 12 hours with one feeding anytime around 3-5 am. That happens most days/nights but then we get a wild card night where she wants to wake up every 3-4 hours to eat and I assume it's due to a growth spurt so we roll with it. On days where we're blowing and going everywhere she doesn't nap as long unfortunately... and she is not a happy camper if she doesn't get a couple solid naps.  I know her sleep/wake patterns will be ever changing depending on the stage she's in but she's doing pretty good for now!

10. She has been ranging from about the 75th-85th percentile in height, weight and head circumference.

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This picture {above} cracks me up... It was June's first dr.'s appointment and she was only 5 days old. While I was signing in, there was a snotty nose 3 yr old trying to touch her and I could see Aaron trying his hardest to nicely and gently keep him away all the while fuming on the inside. After he got rid of the kid he positioned June between his legs so that no one could see/touch/breathe on her. It was hilarious... to me, not to him. Ha!

11. She loves to be outside.

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I think this is characteristic of all babies... and I think fresh air and good ole change of scenery does everyone good. She is so hot natured though... I guess she gets that from her daddy. We enjoy getting out of the house on pretty days and going for a walk/run in the stroller.

12.  She looks like both her momma and her daddy.

When we compare her to our baby pictures it is quite obvious that she looks like a mix of both of us. Her smile and facial expressions are identical to mine and her serious face looks just like Aaron did. She has Aaron's forehead, head shape, ear shape and feet for sure. She has my eyes and mouth and we're not sure about the nose just yet. Of course, it's all subject to change but it's fun to look and compare... and of course, every one has their own opinion of who she looks like and it's so fun to hear!

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These past twelve weeks have not been easy, but they have been so special and sweet. I have seen with my own eyes how quickly June has gone from a newborn to a "baby" and I am thankful that I have made an attempt to savor and enjoy every day. I cannot get over how quickly 12 weeks came and went.

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Tomorrow is my first day back to work and it makes me sick to leave her for 12+ hours. However, I am thankful to be leaving her with my Mom... they are going to have so much fun together! Thankfully I only work 3 days a week and yes, that is one of the many reasons I wanted to do nursing. However, being a wife to Aaron and a momma to June is my favorite job ever.

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Loving these two sure is fun.


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