Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Real Santa

Dear Olive,

I'm pretty sure you are going to be reading this much older than the age in which you sit on Santa's lap. Lets just hope so.

Today I made a blooper. We were trying to scope out the Santa for Luthien's first Santa Pic and he was all closed up in his own little house. I asked a family in line if Santa was in there. She said, "Yes he is" and I said, "Is he a good looking Santa?"

She gave me the EVIL eye and very slowly and pointedly said, "YES" and all of the sudden I was like Oh crap. I saw the little girls looking up at me and I replied, "Cause Santa is such a good looking guy!" and ran away.

What was I thinking? This is going to be tricky. But it gets better. Grandmakins was making a joke from our youth about Santa and practically SHOUTED, "Well the REAL Santa is at South Coast Plaza" while like 15 kids stood by, luckily not paying attention.

We're just not there yet. . .

Monday, December 12, 2011

From Baby to Toddler

Dear Olive,

You are now a toddler. I know this because you just had your one year birthday and check up. The paper I took home says, "Your toddler" this, and "Your toddler now" that. What? Toddler? Does that mean I can't call you baby Olive anymore?

You STILL weigh 17 lbs, I feel like you'll be in that baby car seat forever! You love berries- especially raspberries and blackberries. You walk now. Your favorite toy in the whole world is a ball, and you get super excited whenever you see one. I guess technically that was your first real word too. You love to put things in your mouth and toddle around with them hanging out. Think big things, like tupper ware lids. . . You just bite on and go about your business playing or moving around the room while it hangs. You actually stack your stacker now, as well as stacking up toys to climb up onto more dangerous territory. You still love swinging. I can't walk you past a park without you getting all worked up if we don't stop on the swings.

You're really difficult to feed as well. But I do have to say how proud I am of your self weaning abilities. You weaned off the breast when you were done with that, then you weaned yourself off the pacifier, now you're weaning off the bottle. . . all on your own!

I think it's harder for me to stop giving you the bottle than for you. I rely on the routine of it. The other morning I didn't give you one and you didn't even notice, but I love getting you from your crib and laying with you in the morning while you drink it.

I guess this is why people end up having more babies. Everything changes so quickly.

Friday, November 18, 2011

I called 9-1-1

Dear Olive,

I think last night is the first time I've ever called 9-1-1. You were playing near our kitchen cart, pulling the tupperwares out. I was busy cleaning up the kitchen and I am guessing you tried to climb up in the cart. I heard you start whining and lo and behold, you had gotten your leg stuck in between the little wooden slats.

At first I laughed at you, silly girl! Then I realized I couldn't get your foot through. It was really scary because I started thinking, "What if your circulation gets cut off?" What if I ruin your leg forever and it was all because of this moment?

I was trying to test the strength of the wood to see if I could pull the slat off, but there was no way I could have broken it, so then I started thinking about what I had to use to break it. I was thinking I needed to try lotion too maybe. It was really wedged, it would not budge, and you were crying. I was freaking out (on the inside) so I called 9-1-1 because I didn't want to waste a second if you were going to risk losing your foot. I was imagining me trying everything and your foot turning blue and losing feeling.

They were transferring me and telling me that they couldn't hear me because my baby was crying and I was like, no duh! They were pretty rude sounding, but luckily I got your foot out while I was on hold. I just had to get it at the right angle and pull harder than I was comfortable doing.

You were pretty upset for a few minutes but then we played and you seemed fine. I moved your ankle around, pressed on your foot, and tried to see if anything was hurting you. We are safe! No pain.

And what did you do today? Went right back over there and started playing again.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

First Steps

Dear Olive,

It's not like it is in the movies. There is no, "You took your first steps!" There seems to be a total grey area with the whole first steps thing, for you anyway.

You are an excellent cruiser. In today's world, they define cruising as walking around holding onto things. Your dad and I have also named what you do as "transferring"- when you let go completely and then transfer to another object. It's close to walking.

Yesterday and today you kind of took your first steps? You were holding on to dad's knee and you transferred to the couch but it was too far for one reach. You stood by yourself and walked two whole steps. Does that count? You are fast at cruising and transferring, but you don't like to stand up without holding something. So now we will wait until you do it like the movies, stand up, and walk across the room.

So we are still confused. Have you taken your first steps, or not?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Hi and Bye Bye

Dear Olive,

I cried tonight because you're growing up so fast. It's hard to even remember some of the most precious moments of when you were a few months younger, what other things might I forget? I feel so bad because there's this constant battle in our life for time. Time to work, time to spend with you, time to spend with your dad, time to spend with myself, time to spend with family and friends, time to do the dishes. We are sometimes so quick to just pass you around between each other to get the time we need to just get by in life. And while that's going on, you're changing every day.

At night it's my favorite time. Right before I put you to bed, all I have to do is turn off the light and you know what to do. You put your head down on my shoulder and you just relax and I stand by your crib holding you and swaying for a while. Sometimes I get a nagging feeling that I need to put you down and get on with all the things demanding of my time that I didn't get to yet. But I ALWAYS just hold you and make the effort to be in the moment because I feel you growing up so fast and I think about how you will not always be so small that I can hold you while you sleep. Things will never be as they are right now, again.

I tried to take a video of you tonight playing in your bath. You were having a grand ol' time in the kitchen sink at your Grandma Shelly's house, with tons of family around, laughing and waving and trying to say, "uh oh" and I tried to capture the moment. For some reason the camera didn't save it, and I was sad that those little moments will be forgotten with the hectic way life is and the fast pace we are moving.

Today was a great day Olive. You started getting really good at waving hi and bye bye, and when we dropped your toy and said "Uh Oh!" you said it back. It was absolutely adorable and everyone crowded around trying to get you to do it again.

You are soooo close to walking, you transfer from thing to thing and get around pretty good, but I can tell you are just ever so ready to let go and move around on your own. I'm in no rush for you to walk, I realized today it's just one more thing that makes you 'not a baby anymore' when you start walking!

You're starting to really love figuring out things. You sat playing with a tupperware the other day until you could get the lid off and back on again. Luckily I did get that on film. I was proud of you! I never showed you how to do that, good girl!

I stood extra long tonight with you by your crib. I held you and treasured the moment. It's all about enjoying every moment. Easier said than done, but easy when it's you.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Spendy Little Sucker

Dear Olive,

We can't take you out to eat anymore! And FYI eating out with you alone is A BIG mistake. Tonight I made that mistake.

This past week was definitely different when we'd go out to eat. It was a turning point. You no longer sit in your high chair, you stand up in it. Yeah whoever thinks those straps work is absolutely demented. You want to eat standing up, or not eat at all, and just mosey around the booth from person to person.

Tonight there was horrible traffic so I thought I'd just try to kick it in the local Applebees and wait it out. This is where I made the big mistake. First of all it was close to your bedtime, and I wanted to hurry you home and get you to bed without a bath. But I know you needed dinner, and I needed to avoid this traffic.

You wouldn't sit in the high chair (not a shock) so I let you sit on my lap. You were intent on playing with my ice water, dipping your little hands in and stirring around the ice. But then you tipped the whole giant thing over and got me soaking wet. After cleaning THAT up, the food came and you sat for a little bit, but you wanted to pick it up yourself and got food ALL OVER the place. As soon as you were bored with that, I had to pick you up again, and you were so fussy I didn't even get to eat my food.

What a waste of money! And time! I still had to come home and give you a bath since you were totally covered in mashed potatoes. Plus the traffic wasn't even cleared up when we left. It's not your fault, I knew that you were becoming too hard to take out to eat. And why I thought I'd try it by myself is beyond me. But this was the experience I needed, to know for sure that I'm over restaurants with you for a while!

You, Olive Grace, are a wild one.

Here's a pic of you at Chipotle yesterday, once again squirming out of your high chair and spilling the food dish all over the place.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Two Front Teeth

Dear Olive,

Good Lord up above, when is this teething going to be over? Olive, are you going to be this upset for every single tooth? I've started leaving the house in the morning and not coming back until the afternoon because you are a lot happier (distracted) when we are out and about.

You are learning all kinds of new things though. Somehow you've figured out that to get down from something high, like the bed, you have to turn around and back down, legs first.You can't do it on your own but you are trying.

Probably the strangest thing is your aversion to holding your own bottle. You just won't do it. I put your little hands around the bottle and let go, but no. You're also not that into the sippy cup yet but I've started putting it on your high chair all the time anyway.

I just can't get over how adventurous you are. You try to stand, climb, or tumble your way through everything in your path! You are my little monkey! Even in the bath tub, it's so hard to keep you sitting down, totally dangerous!

One last thought for the night. . . I can't wait until I can start giving you one of my favorite foods... sushi! You already enjoy eating with chopsticks! I guess I'll have to wait a little longer.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Where we live

Dear Olive,

A few months ago we decided we'd be better off just giving you your own room at night. You sleep like 12 or 13 hours in there anyway, so it just made more sense. I thought it would be nice for you to see your first room!

We moved our bed out into the living room, and it's working out really well actually. We have a little couch and a carpet in there too, plus a desk for me and your dad. You can see in the picture with the bed, it used to be one sided, but we opened it up and now we each have a side.

I also got a new curtain to put up when the blinds fell down, and I LOVE it!

Now I just have to keep you from grabbing at them. There's so much to say, and I'm sad I'm not saying it all before I forget it. Until next time. . .

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Ask 5 for 5

As most of you know, the famine in East Africa devastates me... most of my efforts to attract attention to the matter have failed, but I'm participating in this blog post in the hopes even one more person will care.

Guest Blogger: Sarah Lenssen from #Ask5for5
Family photos by Mike Fiechtner Photography

Thank you (insert blog name) and nearly 150 other bloggers from around the world for allowing me to share a story with you today, during Social Media Week.

A hungry child in East Africa can't wait. Her hunger consumes her while we decide if we'll respond and save her life. In Somalia, children are stumbling along for days, even weeks, on dangerous roads and with empty stomachs in search of food and water. Their crops failed for the third year in a row. All their animals died. They lost everything. Thousands are dying along the road before they find help in refugee camps. 

At my house, when my three children are hungry, they wait minutes for food, maybe an hour if dinner is approaching. Children affected by the food crisis in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Somalia aren't so lucky. Did you know that the worst drought in 60 years is ravaging whole countries right now, as you read this? Famine, a term not used lightly, has been declared in Somalia. This is the world's first famine in 20 years.12.4 million people are in need of emergency assistance and over 29,000 children have died in the last three months alone. A child is dying every 5 minutes. It it estimated that 750,000 people could die before this famine is over. Take a moment and let that settle in.

The media plays a major role in disasters. They have the power to draw the attention of society to respond--or not. Unfortunately, this horrific disaster has become merely a footnote in most national media outlets. News of the U.S. national debt squabble and the latest celebrity's baby bump dominate headlines. That is why I am thrilled that nearly 150 bloggers from all over the world are joining together today to use the power of social media to make their own headlines; to share the urgent need of the almost forgotten with their blog readers. Humans have the capacity to care deeply for those who are suffering, but in a situation like this when the numbers are too huge to grasp and the people so far away, we often feel like the little we can do will be a drop in the ocean, and don't do anything at all.

When news of the famine first hit the news in late July, I selfishly avoided it. I didn't want to read about it or hear about it because I knew I would feel overwhelmed and uncomfortable. I wanted to protect myself. I knew I would need to do something if I knew what was really happening. You see, this food crisis is personal. I have a 4-year-old son and a 1 yr-old daughter who were adopted from Ethiopia and born in regions now affected by the drought. If my children still lived in their home villages, they would be two of the 12.4 million. My children: extremely hungry and malnourished? Gulp. I think any one of us would do anything we could for our hungry child. But would you do something for another mother's hungry child?

My friend and World Vision staffer, Jon Warren, was recently in Dadaab Refugee Camp in Kenya--the largest refugee camp in the world with over 400,000 people. He told me the story of Isnino Siyat, 22, a mother who walked for 10 days and nights with her husband, 1 yr-old-baby, Suleiman, and 4 yr.-old son Adan Hussein, fleeing the drought in Somalia. When she arrived at Dadaab, she built the family a shelter with borrowed materials while carrying her baby on her back. Even her dress is borrowed. As she sat in the shelter on her second night in camp she told Jon, "I left because of hunger. It is a very horrible drought which finished both our livestock and our farm." The family lost their 5 cows and 10 goats one by one over 3 months, as grazing lands dried up. "We don't have enough food now...our food is finished. I am really worried about the future of my children and myself if the situation continues."

Will you help a child like Baby Suleiman? Ask5for5 is a dream built upon the belief that you will.

That something I knew I would need to do became a campaign called #Ask5for5 to raise awareness and funds for famine and drought victims. The concept is simple, give $5 and ask five of your friends to give $5, and then they each ask five of their friends to give $5 and so on--in nine generations of 5x5x5...we could raise $2.4 Million! In one month, over 750 people have donated over $25,000! I set up a fundraiser at See Your Impact and 100% of the funds will go to World Vision, an organization that has been fighting hunger in the Horn of Africa for decades and will continue long after this famine has ended. Donations can multiply up to 5 times in impact by government grants to help provide emergency food, clean water, agricultural support, healthcare, and other vital assistance to children and families suffering in the Horn.

I need you to help me save lives. It's so so simple; here's what you need to do:

  1. Donate $5 or more on this page (http://seeyourimpact.org/members/ask5for5)
  2. Send an email to your friends and ask them to join us.
  3. Share #Ask5for5 on Facebook and Twitter!
I'm looking for another 100 bloggers to share this post on their blogs throughout Social Media Week. Email me at ask5for5@gmail.com if you're interested in participating this week.

A hungry child doesn't wait. She doesn't wait for us to finish the other things on our to-do list, or get to it next month when we might have a little more money to give. She doesn't wait for us to decide if she's important enough to deserve a response. She will only wait as long as her weakened little body will hold on...please respond now and help save her life. Ask 5 for 5.

Thank you on behalf of all of those who will be helped--you are saving lives and changing history.

p.s. Please don't move on to the next website before you donate and email your friends right now. It only takes 5 minutes and just $5, and if you're life is busy like mine, you probably won't get back to it later. Let's not be a generation that ignores hundreds of thousands of starving people, instead let's leave a legacy of compassion. You have the opportunity to save a life today!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Bye Bye Pacifier

Dear Olive,

Um... thank you? You've weaned yourself off the pacifier. You were never obsessed with it anyway, but you definitely liked it when you went to sleep, or in the car seat if you were tired. I'm still not really sure how it happened, but it slowly did, and now you don't ever need it in your crib anymore, or in the car seat. For a while I would just toss it in your crib and I thought you might be using it in the night when you woke up, but lately it hasn't even been in there and you have not noticed.

We go out and about so much, and you finally caught a little cold :(  Your poor nose is running non stop and I have to keep wiping it, it's pretty gross.

Here you are right now in this moment, not feeling too hot as you can see.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Big-ish Girl

Dear Olive,

You're 9 months old already. I know everyone says time flies and "they grow up so fast," so I don't know why I'm so surprised at just how fast. You're starting to stand up all over the place, as long as there is something for you to hold on to. Sometimes you try to let go and balance but it doesn't last very long.

You're teething like crazy, but nothing is coming out yet. Let's see, I wanted to do these posts for you so you could check in on your milestones one day.

You've been saying ba ba for a couple months already, but now you're saying da da, la la, and wa wa. BUT you really don't know what you're saying so it still doesnt count as a word I guess. You are a crazy adventure seeker, trying to climb up and over anything you can. You're a danger to yourself and I have to watch you every second or, BAM you smack your head! You also are so funny when you are trying to stand and reach something. . . you will stand up on your very tipy toes! I wonder if you're going to be a ballerina?!?!

Your food repertoire is getting more advanced too, however I noticed you're taking a disinterest in vegetables. Uh oh. I have all this frozen baby food I made for you and you are so NOT into it. You want finger foods you can feed yourself! So tonight I gave you spaghetti with ground turkey and I liked it because it made you really full I think. You actually left some on the tray which is unusual. You love cheese toast in the morning too. Yum.

We've been doing lots of stuff out of the house and I think we are both happier for it. Today we did baby signing story time and it was great! And you love traipsing through the sand at the beach.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Birthday Parties Scare Me

I'm just going to be honest. One of my biggest fears about being a mom are all the birthday parties you have to go to. With friends I have who have older kids, it seems like it never ends. I've tried inviting them to things and the answer inevitably always ends in, "We have a kiddie party to go to that day, sorry."

More presents, more money, more time, more madness. Luke has one day off a week. Hopefully by the time Olive is old enough to want birthday parties and go to her friend's parties, we won't be so strapped for quality time together.

This article is really nailing it on the head for me: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/03/birthday-parties-for-kids_n_917732.html?icid=main|welcome|dl12|sec1_lnk3|221278

The quote that gets me is this, "I heard a story about a mother deciding not to do party bags," Doherty said. “All the kids at the party got upset and one said, 'This is a ripoff!' The party girl burst into tears."

Are you kidding me? Do we really have to train our kids at such a young age to be consumed with PARTY BAGS and the 99 cent crap that goes into them? Can we all agree that if nobody did them, nobody would miss them?

Olive's first birthday is going to be here before we know it. I decided already to do something small and intimate with just our family because I'm so scared if I invite anyone else I will be starting a cycle of everyone having to do something for everyone else and create pressure and stress. We'll get her a big cake and hopefully she'll get messy in it and I'll take a million pictures and put off the pressure until she's a little older. Maybe somehow we will avoid it altogether, but I guess it's just part of being a mom.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Road Trippin

Dear Olive,

We're about to set off on a road trip today and I have no idea what to expect! We'll have your little cousin Luthien in tow as well. We were supposed to rent a mini van but the place called last minute and said they were all out, and they are sticking us with a HUGE suv called a Tahoe. Not so great on the gas mileage but I told Granmakin we will just go slow and not punch the gas.
I'm sure we'll be stopping plenty so you can get out and stretch your legs, you are a crawling machine now. You're getting so dirty all the time, plus you're eating a lot more now too. Yesterday we put some cheese on your toast and today we tried jam. . . next up is sushi!  Just kidding. But hopefully soon because that's my favorite.

Well, you're napping so I better use this time efficiently and get ready to go. Updates on the trip soon!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Like Mother Like Daughter

Here's a picture of my grandma holding me with my mickey ears on, and here's a photo of your grandma holding you with your mickey ears on! Lots of things change in 28 years, but some things still stay the same...

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Me, Myself, and I. . . And you

Dear Olive,

I've finally started feeling a little bit like my old self again. This week I've done yoga, surfed, and even wrote a song on the guitar. This weekend I'm going running on the bay with some (possible) new friends. I think it will be the first time I've actually jogged with the jogger.

You're now crawling and trying to pull yourself up on things to stand! You love toast and cucumbers and celery sticks, and you also love THROWING TANTRUMS already!

It's incredible. You are very good at it. I think we're going to have to break this tantrum thing before you hit your terrible twos or I'm in for it. I don't think you even know why you're crying you are just pissed off that I'm not holding you.

You've unfortunately taken after both your dad and I in the areas of stubbornness and passionateness. But you better get that nap in because we're going to the beach today. . .

Friday, July 15, 2011

Forward or Back?

Dear Olive,

You're wiping me out. But at the same time, I am already really missing your sweet newborn ways and I can see why people keep having more babies, even when they're exhausted.

We've been taking a nightly bath together since you were in your tiny first months. It was one of my favorite times because we'd both relax and be in the moment, just lounging in the water. You'd lay on my lap and just look around and totally chill out. I feel like that was a really good time for bonding.

Over the past few weeks you've become less and less interested in breastfeeding. It all started when I had a few meetings and Granmakins had to feed you formula while I was away. I didn't pump and that's all it took for my milk to start going away. It's kind of sad because things were going so well and I was not pumping or stressed, just feeding you and it was easy.

Since then though, it's been a struggle and I've been feeding you less and less as you are totally disinterested after seconds of latching on. It's either lack of milk or your preference for looking around (the busy body you are) and your HUGE love of finger foods. Either way, I think my days of breastfeeding you are over.

Tonight we took our nightly bath and it's just getting harder to keep you happy in there. You don't want to relax anymore, you want to be all over the place playing and splashing and I feel kind of sad because that was our special time and now that I'm not breastfeeding I am feeling some weird sadness. I know you're just growing up and becoming more independent, but so soon already?

It's so funny we yearn for these moments amidst the chaos- we can't wait for you to be able to sit up and play on your own so you're happy, or even sometimes I think about when you will be in school and I can catch a second to myself ;) but it really breaks my heart to think about how fast you're growing up and reminds me again to be in the moment.

I was so in the moment when you were littler, cherishing your sweetness, then things started getting crazy and I've become a little more tired. You are testing me, crying whenever I walk into sight, crying whenever I turn away from you. You are also still getting stuck sitting up in your crib and that's becoming a problem of its own.

Buuuuut when all is said and done, you're just too cute even as I run around picking up rice puffs with the bottoms of my feet or swatting you away from chewing on my cell phone. You are just on the constant move, rolling this way or that, scooting, shuffling, you just can't stay still.

I do believe, the only constant in raising a child is change. You just keep changing. Things just keep changing. As soon as I've figured you out, you change.

Your dad and I say we can't wait until you understand how to lay and cuddle and watch a movie (especially those times we are just plain tired) but then again I stop myself and say, "No... just enjoy this stage."

You're just being you.

Oh by the way, you prefer feeding yourself, but there's not a lot I can give you safely yet. I decided to let you get messy and eat some cottage cheese. That was a little TOO messy, but at least you had fun.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Olive and Greens

Dear Olive,

I let you try some broccoli last week. You are super into finger foods but there isn't a whole lot you can eat yet, so I figured I'd let you gnaw on it. You weren't sure what to think at first. In fact, you didn't like it at all.

But then you came around and you LOVED loved LOVED it! Here you are thinking :"Hm what is this?"

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Getting Stuck

Dear Olive,

Yesterday morning I awoke to your small whimpers, a little earlier than you normally wake up. I found you sitting up in the corner of your crib, just looking so sad and totally stuck. Congratulations! You can now sit up on your own!!!

But today already it's caused quite a problem. I tried putting you down for a nap, and for some reason, alone in your crib is where you do your best work. I mean, you won't sit up in front of ME, but you'll do it every time I leave the room.

Unfortunately you fell backwards (as I was sitting in the other room thinking you were peacefully sleeping) and hit your little baby olive head on the crib :(  You were kind of stuck in this crunched up position. I was so sad.

We tried putting you down for a nap and every single time, you'd get up into a sitting position and then just sit there, rubbing your eyes and holding your little blanket so tired. We kept going in and laying you back down, and finally you stayed there.

Poor little girl, I'm not sure how long it will take you to learn to lay back down! In other news, we are proud you are doing so well and sitting up by yourself. You're also saying words like buh buh and muh and even duh duh.

You don't know you are saying them though, so I don't think they can count as your first words yet. But boy o boy are you close, it's kind of scary!

Friday, July 1, 2011

The WiLd Safari Park

Dear Olive,

We took you to the Wild Animal Park (now called The Safari Park) for your first time. Holy Hey! It was horrible. First of all, the ratio of animals to concession stands is way off. We had to do quite a bit of walking before we found any live animals. It was more like stores and restaurants... parrot. Stores and restaurants... duck. Ooooh a Gorilla! That was cool.

It was blazing hot and everyone was sweating and dehydrated. It seemed like every fun thing we came to was a money trap. To take a tram around to see the animals cost money, to park cost money, to go up in the balloon cost money, even to use the bathroom cost money! Just kidding.

It was great spending time with Heidi and Thomas from Norway, but you were NOT happy. We tried to feed you water and keep you cool. It was pretty stressful and we just got out of there pretty quick. Safari Park, not my favorite! Zoo, awesome.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Next Olive

Dear Olive,

I'm so sorry I have not been writing, but that doesn't mean there isn't a ton going on with you! You are starting to sit up on your own and making some attempts to crawl, but you end up getting frustrated at that point. You're completely bored with any of your old toys and I've been digging around in all my reserves to keep you happy. My favorite thing is to put you in your new high chair and bring you into the kitchen with me so I can accomplish a few things. Pretty much you want whatever things are NOT toys and within your reach. Why do you gravitate so much to things you are not supposed to have?

I've been making you big batches of baby food and then pouring them into ice cube trays to freeze. I'm going to do that with a lot of your food so I can have little cubes of it ready when I need them. You're not much for milk, but you LOVE eating with a spoon! It's absolutely ridiculously messy. I think your favorite thing is avocado. It's also my favorite because it takes no work at all. Just open it up and plop it down and you go crazy.

You were being a lot fussier and I wasn't sure why, but I think a lot of it had to do with you needing different things and more interaction when you're playing. Since I have stopped doing ANYTHING productive around the house and have given you more attention, you seem happier. Shocking.

I also think you might FINALLY be going through a growth spurt and you need to eat a little more than I'm used to. You're a little pip squeak right now! You are doing really good with grabbing little pieces of food and it keeps you happy and occupied when I do need to get something done. I like to give you dried mango for you to gnaw on but it gets slippery and the other day it went all the way in your mouth and down your throat before you gagged it back out. I have to give you REALLY big pieces or else none at all. Take a look at yourself happily shoving a piece of dried mango in your mouth. Yum Yum.

Friday, June 17, 2011



You're a busy body that is for sure. Just thought I'd post a series of pics from you doing laundry. You love to get out of the house. You could be fussy, and the second that wind hits your hair, wohoo! Even if it's laundry. But that's just because you don't know what laundry is yet.

Monday, June 13, 2011

The Haircut from Hell

Dear Olive,

I had some time to myself tonight, and I wasn't sure exactly how to use it... I mean, I could not even narrow it down, I was too excited. Don't take it personal little OG, but we all need some ME time. Trust me you'll use that phrase someday. And maybe only new moms will understand how precious one or two hours of ME time really is.

Well unfortunately I TOTALLY BLEW IT.

I decided to stroll through the mall and maybe find something new to wear that does not feel like maternity clothes. But as I was walking I realized I would love to get my hair washed and blow dried nice and straight. A little pampering if you will. I stopped at the first salon I came to- big mistake.

The gal was just sitting there in the empty salon, looking confused when I asked how much for a wash and dry. After a long pause she asked, "25?"

Ok deal! I mean, how do you mess up a wash and a dry?????

First of all, I'm pretty sure she never even got my hair wet. It felt like she got it wet in some places, yes. But in under a minute we were up and moving back to her chair. I'm like, "Did you condition it?" Apparently she did.

Then she proceeds to rip a paddle brush through my curly sort of wet hair and sprays "leave in conditioner" spritzer while she blow dries like crazy. Then she started flat ironing and I finally look over... to my horror, my hair looks greasier and dirtier than it was before! And it smelled like dirty-wet hair.

I asked her what was going on and she blamed it on the wrong choice of shampoo. Should I just deal with it? Now it's well on it's way to being 30 minutes in and I kind of wanted to do some shopping. But I REALLY wanted my hair done. You know me, I have crazy curly intense hair that lately is just swept into a horrible bun.

I want to feel pretty for a change!

So back to the washer bowl we went. Hm... this time around I actually felt some suds and some scrubbing... just a little, but enough to know my hair was actually getting washed. I asked her why she didn't just use a round brush and blow dry it straight like most hair stylists. She replied it was a preference thing. (Most good hair stylists can get my hair straight without the use of a flat iron.)

Anyway apparently she changed her mind and decided to try round brushing now. OUCH. I couldn't stand it. I was waiting and it was just as frizzy as if she were blow drying it all wild, so I asked her to just please just dry it normal if she was going to have to use the flat iron anyway. Let's get on with it already! I didn't say that of course.

So then she proceeds to take huge chunks of my now frizzy and thick hair and runs almost half my hair at a time through her tiny flat iron. She's just going over and over and over the same thick handfuls and I thought I was going to scream.

So again, I had to say, "Do you think you could just separate it out in smaller pieces and straighten it that way?" Pretty soon I've got the owner doing one side, she's doing the other, it's been an hour and half and I've got to get home to feed you.

But here is the kicker. I came in here to destress and feel pretty. What does she say to me as she turns me around to present my new hair?

"Oh my gosh you look so different!  When you came in here I thought you were so old... but when you said you were 28 I was just shocked. You look so much older."

I think she was trying to make me feel better about her performance like, wow look what I turned you into! But it had the opposite effect. I am always a mess, I am 25 pounds overweight, I never have time to do my hair or makeup, and the last thing I need to hear is how OLD I look.

But the (second) kicker is the last thing she said as I was getting up to go. "Oh that shirt is cute, is that a maternity shirt?"

No, it's not. It's just big and cozy because nothing fits me, which ironically is why I was coming in to the mall in the first place!

That was hands down one of the worst ideas I've ever had. I just didn't think anyone could mess up something so simple! And I realize it was not a haircut, just a blow dry. But I was not sure how to title it at this point in the evening!

I finally got home to you and I was so happy, my little cuddle bug. I have so many blogs to write about you! Next time I get some ME time, maybe I'll use it to write about OUR time. <3

This is how I felt:

Thursday, May 26, 2011

This and That

Dear Olive,

This is a post from a few weeks ago and I feel if I don't post it now, I never will!

Oh Olive, the weeks are zooming by and I have to stop and make note of the funny things you do. Lately you've been very interested in eating your own toes, don't ask me why. I've always thought toes were over rated, but you seem to love them.

You also love raspberries. You will get on a roll and just do one after another after another and it's pretty dang funny. It's another one of those little things you seem to do only for me.

Today I picked up the guitar for the first time in a LONG time. I was just strumming a little Ben Harper tune and you tried to sing along. I posted it on facebook even though at first I was totally embarrassed to let anyone hear that kind of singing. Then I thought, "Who cares!"

You're seriously scooting like a mo fo. Now I have to always use the straps on things or else you end up doing this:

You are growing so much character and I am loving you more and more and more every single day my baby girl!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Nameless Post

Dear Olive,

I am so backlogged with blog posts about you! Here is a quick one just so I don't forget a few things! I've broke you of the swaddle and maybe even the pacifier! Last night you slept all night with out the swaddle. Then tonight you were laying on the bed just unwinding and playing with a little blanket and you just drifted off on your own with no swaddle and no paci.  I was absolutely amazed!

Normally you don't really know it's bed time until I wrap you up and stick a pacifier in your mouth. That calms you instantly and you fall asleep, but this is way better! I hope you keep it up.

You are doing really well with all the solid foods. You've had banana, apple, sweet potato, avocado, and tomorrow I'm going to give you some watermelon.

We went to Disneyland on Sunday, I have lots of pics to post later...

Friday, May 20, 2011

Plane Crash Scare

Dear Olive,

You had your first plane ride last night. Unfortunately we never made it to our destination.

I've been growing gray hairs lately, and everyone says it's due to stress. So when it was time to go to Hawaii and visit Carmen and her family for Brucie's wedding, I was excited to get away and destress a bit. So much time and money preparing for this trip... but it never happened.

We boarded the plane and got all settled in and ready to take off! But right after we got all situated, they told everyone to deplane so they could finish some routine maintenance that was not done (miscommunication from the maint. dept they said.) So we gathered all of our stuff again and got off.

30 minutes later we boarded again. But the captain came back on, "Well this is just not a lucky plane today, now we have to...." blah blah blah fix another part in the engine and then be on our way. Finally it was ready and we took off. This kind of thing has happened to me many times before, and it's never been a problem.

I'm not sure how far over the ocean we were, but I had taken a little nap and the flight attendants were coming down the aisles with drinks. I was in the middle of fiddling with my earphones thinking about what I wanted to drink, when all the oxygen masks dropped down from the ceiling.

Everyone looked around like, "Is this a malfunction?" But then someone came over the speaker and told us to put on the masks. That's when the adrenaline hit. You were sleeping in granmakin's arms and I just remember saying, "Give her to me!!!" I know you are supposed to put your mask on first and then help others, I knew I'd be no help to you if I was passed out. But I was so worried about your little lungs. It was so sad, you were peacefully sleeping. I yanked the pacifier out of your mouth and tried to put the mask up to your face. I was trying to hold mine to my face because I couldn't find the straps (they are tucked away fyi, and you have to pull them out) and once I got it out it was so huge and it kept slipping off my head anyway. They really are not easy in a panic.

The plane was going downward and you were just freaking out, turning your head and resisting the mask, while I tried to make sure you were breathing ok. Granmakin told me to open the window so we could see what was happening, and she looked at me with real fear in her eyes and said, "I think we're going to go down in the ocean."

I realized if we went down it would be really hard to keep you safe, so I tried to put the carrier on while we were descending. Honestly, we didn't know how much time we had, and if we were going down, I needed to get you attached to me. We were trying to get the straps on and then get you in, and the flight attendant came running over, freaking out to put the mask back on you. That made me even more scared to see her so serious and frantic. Part of me knew I needed to put your mask on, and part of me was afraid we only had seconds before we might plunge into the ocean and I'd lose hold of you.

Finally granmakin helped me get the straps tighter on my mask and I realized part of your mask was tucked under and I think oxygen was escaping. Those damn things are like floppy thin rubber and are very hard to handle on a moving baby. I got it more secure and held it fast, even as you thrashed. Your poor little arms were sticking out from the carrier because there was no time to try and and adjust you. And our oxygen bags looked so different than yours, I was so afraid you could not breath. I was so afraid you were going to go limp or pass out. I have never felt such adrenaline that was this long lasting, wondering if this was it for us. It was horrible.

Yet I was pretty composed until granmakin mentioned she had been having a bad feeling about coming and she had not told me because I have issues with this kind of thing any way. She thought it was the end for us, and I was extremely sad.

We kept going down and then finally someone announced we could take off the oxygen masks because we were low enough to be able to breath again. We hadn't thought about the fact we were going down so fast because of the cabin pressure, instead of crashing. I felt a rush of relief just knowing you were going to be ok, but it was not over yet.

We were then prompted to prepare for a crash landing. The flight attendants had on their life vests and we were trying to read through the brochures to see how to use ours. I wasn't sure how I was going to put it on because you were already strapped to me, so where would a life vest go? I decided I'd put it around my legs or something, just a way to use it to float I guess.

We were told to take off any heels or pointy things, jewelry, anything that could poke a hole in the raft. Eventually the captain came on again and told us we'd be landing in LA in about 25 minutes. The flight attendants then prompted us on how to brace ourselves for a hard landing and how to have an "orderly escape". We were supposed to leave behind EVERYTHING, so I was thinking how I better grab my phone at least. I'd leave my wallet, my new nook, my mac, whatever. I had one small pocket, good for a phone.

They quickly showed us where the exits were, repeating in loud strained voices where all the emergency doors were located. They showed us how to sit and brace ourselves, with your head down between your knees, again of course that would not be possible with you on my chest. If you couldn't assume that position, they told us to brace against the seat in front of us.

There was something to do with having too much fuel to have a safe landing, and there would be fire trucks and the like waiting for our arrival in case we were too heavy to land or something. But that made me feel better because he explained some of the loud noise was him just trying to burn fuel before we landed.

The whole time going down I was so scared that you weren't breathing. You were asleep in the carrier on my chest and I kept holding my breath so I could feel your stomach move. When we got close to landing I took your pacifier out so it would not cause you harm in the event we actually crashed.

Everything turned out fine and we got to pull in to the terminal and deplane as normal. Granpakin looked into it more today and apparently we were at the regular cruising altitude when the the alarms went off in the cockpit, and if it's bad enough, the masks will drop down. We had to go from 38,000 feet to 10,000 feet to be able to breath, and that is why it seemed like we were going down so fast... because I guess we were.

There was going to be a later flight on a new plane, but they canceled it because the crew were too freaked out to even think about flying again right away.

Now it's 10 pm the next day, we had a long night stranded in LA last night, we found a hotel eventually, then today we had to take a shuttle back to LAX, take a bus ride to Irvine, then a train to Oceanside, and get picked up to come back home. I am so tired, I can't wait to hit the pillow... This has been a really, really long 2 days. I'm so glad I was not alone for this ordeal! I can not explain or put into words the feelings that came over me in those moments, so I won't even try. I kept it bare bones and this was the best I can do to explain your first plane ride. Lets hope the next one is a little better!!!

Here are some pictures: You in your travel outfit visiting Nana on our way up to the airport. Us at the airport today just waiting around. You and granmakin on the bus to Irvine. Then you guys on the train down to San Diego. You were such a good girl the entire time.