Friday, March 27, 2009

Out with the Old, In with the New

We have officially entered the world of parenthood, we now are the owners of a minivan! We have been researching them for awhile now and been talking to people who have them. "It is the only way to go," say other parents, so we decided to make life easier and trade my Ford Focus in. I am a very sentimental person, so I have to say I'm a little sad to see the Focus go! I have a lot of good memories associated with that car...

I purposely bought a stick shift back in 2003 so it would force me to learn how to drive one. Craig and I were just newly dating when I was going through the purchase of it. I have fond memories of a driving lesson he gave me in my mom's car, which was a stick at the time. I also remember driving to meet my dad for breakfast the day after I got the Focus. My sister and I were coming from opposite directions to meet him at Village Inn. We both got to the intersection in front of the restaurant at the same time where she was able to witness me stalling out right in the middle of the intersection! She was giving me an encouraging wave and I could just hear her saying, "You can do it Heid!" Oh those early days of driving it held such pressure! I would sweat like crazy when I had to stop on a hill! But soon I conquered it and was amazed at how quickly I became a natural. I consider it a glorious accomplishment and am thankful for the past 6 years that I've had it!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

He Laughed!

We heard Gage laugh for the first time last night! Craig was tickling him and he smiled and opened his mouth like usual, and then "uh uh uh" came out! Oh what a wonderful sound!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Gage and Landon

I love that many of my friends have had/will have baby boys within the year that I had Gage! His little buddy Landon is 8 months old and is becoming more aware of Gage than he is of him. Landon's mommy, Emily, is a good friend of mine. It is cute to get them together even now, although Gage has no idea what's going on. I can't wait until Gage can actually play with his friends, and then I can "play" with my friends at the same time! 8-)

Friday, March 20, 2009

Minivans and a Free Meal

Today was a great day! Craig took the day off so we could go minivan shopping! Yes, that's right...we are soon to be the owners of a minivan! Now being parents and all we have to fit the stereotype. 8-) We looked at several vans and even test drove one. Of course the salesman put the pressure on thick and told us there was another person interested in the same one we were test driving and so if we don't act now it would be gone very quickly. We said that we don't want to be hasty and if it goes to someone else then we weren't meant to have it. Well no more than 2 minutes after getting back and looking briefly at another van, there was a SOLD sign in the window! I couldn't believe it! But we were still glad we didn't do something we might have regretted!

Part of our purpose in going to Des Moines was to also eat at the Cheesecake Factory, a very special treat for us! The last time we were there was on my birthday with a little one inside me. This time we had a little one join us! And he was awesome! All day, in fact, he was so good. He mostly slept. Once again Craig and I had a great time talking things over while at the Cheesecake Factory! Soon something exciting happened...I was eating a delicious chicken entree and halfway through I look down and nestled in the chicken was a piece of...something...I wasn't sure what! It was white and paper-like, definitely not edible. We notified our waitress and soon the manager came over with apologies and the news that the meal would be on them tonight! A new entree came out that we ended up taking home with us. Since it wasn't a band-aid or anything I wasn't too grossed out! It was one of those experiences to be grateful for to get the free meal!

Monday, March 16, 2009

One Last Shower

On Saturday Gage and I travelled to Cedar Falls for our last shower. My mom and sister wanted to give me a shower after the baby was born so it was scheduled for March 14th. It was a wonderful time to get together with people I rarely see! (The picture above is the only photo I took with my camera! Gage is with my cousin's daughter, Hannah. She is about the most adorable 6 year old there is!) Gage was absolutely the sweetest baby ever! It was his naptime just as people started to arrive and I could tell he was getting tired. He fell asleep on me and had a little catnap since it was impossible to stay asleep when so many people wanted to see and hold him! But he was a little trooper! Finally he slept in Aunt Josie's arms while I opened presents. Wow we were spoiled!! So many wonderful gifts: adorable outfits, books, stuffed animals, diapers, toys, picture frames, and even embroidered burp cloths and towels!! And that's just to name a few. No games but everyone worked on a scrapbook page for a mini album for us. It turned out just darling. What a great day! I am so thankful for my mom and sis, and such wonderful family and friends!

Aunt Holly is painting his feet for his footprints to go in the mini scrapbook!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Craig's Fleece Blanket

My hubby loves homemade fleece blankets! The first one I made for him was for Christmas over 5 years ago when we were engaged:

I made another one for him a few Christmases ago to match the family room at our new house:

Well, the photos don't really show it but both blankets have definitely seen their better days! I'm embarrassed to offer one to anyone over who might be chilly! So it was time to make a new one, a just-because-I-love-you blanket! It was difficult to make this time for two reasons: not enough time and not enough space! But with Gage's cooperation I got it done. We'll be giving it to Daddy tonight...hope he likes it!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Crying It Out

It is hard hard hard listening to your baby cry! It sounds ridiculous now, but during my pregnancy I believed that my baby wasn't going to cry. Of course I knew that was silly, all babies cry, but when Craig would talk about his concerns that our next door neighbors would hear the crying I didn't share in them because I couldn't imagine my sweet, perfect baby annoying the neighbors with crying! I still believe my baby is sweet, and almost perfect, but boy was I wrong about the crying! We planned on waiting until Gage was 3 months until we let him cry it out when putting him down to sleep. But last night when, once again, he was crying and thrashing in my arms right before falling asleep, the usual routine, we thought if he's going to cry anyway, why not let him do it in the pack n' play. (Oh yes, he has graduated from the bassinet to the pack n' play!) Well 30 tortuous minutes went by but his cries gradually became softer with breaks in between. Finally he was asleep! He did wake up about a half hour later but we were encouraged that we were on to something! Well today I decided to let him cry it out when I laid him down for a nap. This time after 10 minutes he was out, and he slept for about 40 minutes! That's 10 minutes longer than usual! Tonight it was just me, I didn't have Craig's hand to hold while I listened to my baby cry, but thankfully once again, it lasted for about 10 minutes and he was out, and is still out - over one hour later! Hallelujah! I'm glad to know that letting him cry hasn't been as rough as I thought it would be!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Gage's First Trip!

Last weekend we drove to Davenport to visit Craig's family. It was a 3 hour drive and Gage slept the whole way. On Saturday night he got to meet Craig's cousin Deena and Aunt Pam, and Aunt Erin and Uncle Corey, and cousins Chloe, Caelan and Cole. Everyone agreed that Gage looks just like his daddy! We went to the church Craig grew up in on Sunday and introduced Gage to lots of family friends. After church we had lunch at Grandma and Grandpa E's where Gage and his cousin Dalton hung out:It was so adorable! They were as happy as can be laying next to each other, like it was the most natural thing in the world. There were 5 adults videoing, cooing, and taking pictures over them for about 20 minutes! Gage thought it was pretty funny!

(I know it looks like I only dress him in this outfit! It is one of my favorites, but he does wear other clothes! 8-)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

How Time Flies!

Gage is 2 months old already! Two months of pregnancy goes by very slowly, but when the baby is here it's gone in a blink. He had his 2 month check up on Wednesday. He is in the 75th percentile for weight and length which I am happy about! Even though he was born so long (22 in) he must be averaging out. (Is averaging a word??) He had to get 3 pokes for his vaccinations. I was dreading it and told Craig he needed to be there for moral support. His reply was, "Well he'll have you there." And I said, "Not for Gage, for me!" It's not like we haven't heard him cry, loudly, that's for sure, but it is still tough when you know they are crying out in pain. It all went well though. Our boy is a trooper!

A lot of changes have taken place in the past two months...
- Gage has found his fist! It is so cute. It started with a finger and now he tries to get his whole fist in there.
- His neck muscles are amazing! Really from the start he awed us by how well he could hold his head. Now he needs very little support at all.
- Just like his neck, Gage's leg muscles are also very strong. He likes to "stand" on our lap.
- He is smiling and cooing more than ever. He will start smiling at us out of the blue as we are feeding him his bottle. It is so funny! He is always very happy in the morning when he wakes up too. And the other night he was smiling away at Craig when he was putting him to bed. I can already tell he will be a tough one to discipline!
- I know it is so minor, but his eyelashes are thickening! It seemed like overnight I noticed that he has thick, beautiful long eyelashes now!
- He is sleeping longer at night. I am not going to go into detail because I don't want to jinx it (see below)!

What I have learned...
- Do not talk about the progress of sleep! The minute you do it backfires and you have a sleepless night!
- No two days are the same! The amount of time sleeping, where he takes the best nap, what holds his interest, etc. Don't count on anything, it changes everyday!
- Keeping him awake after a bottle does work! Honestly, I have been bugged by people asking me, "Is he on a schedule??" My inward response has been, "He is a newborn for goodness sake! How can he be on a schedule?!" Well, I hate to admit it, but it has really helped to keep him awake after a bottle. We have gotten into a good pattern of eat - stay awake - sleep so our days are more predictable.
- Plan your day around his feeding schedule...that way you won't get stuck feeding him in Wal-Mart's lay away area.
- Keep blog postings short or else it takes 3 days to finish! 8-)

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Just a Swingin'...

Something wonderful has the past few weeks Gage has fallen in love with his bouncy seat and swing! He is happy hanging out in them for longer than 10 minutes now and he will even fall asleep in them for an extended period of time. I know the books say it's a no-no to use things like that for nap times, but I believe in whatever works right now! I can say we are working on laying him down in his bassinet half awake so he can soothe himself to sleep, but he is just not ready for that yet. In the meantime hallelujah for our friends, the bouncy seat and swing!