Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving

What are we thankful for...do you really need to ask...

This picture says it all. We have a healthy baby who seems immensely happy with her place in the world. Last year for Thanksgiving we had no thoughts of expanding our family, now we couldn't imagine our family without MacKenzie.

I am thankful for all of the love and support of our family and friends, know that those ties extend beyond blood and beyond continents (yes, Martha...that means you guys too!). I am thankful that Matt, MacKenzie, and I all have each other and that we can spend time together. I am thankful that we are able to provide for ourselves and help out others who ask. We are thankful for the endless blessings that seem to be bestowed upon us and we look forward to a joyous season of celebration!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

4 weeks old!

A friend of ours...Cassidy tries to write a "letter" to her baby girl every month to watch her progress so I thought I would try to do the same her.

MacKenzie,
Today you are 4 weeks old and Mommy and Daddy are a little shocked as to where the time went. Four weeks ago today Mommy was lying in a hospital bed with you near by in your bassinet and to be quite truthful I was a little shell shocked. One minute we were impatiently awaiting your arrival and the next minute you were here (or at least that is how it seems now). You have changed so much in the past 4 weeks. You have grown so much too! It is amazing to see you stretching and filling out your bassinet, clothes, and our arms. You barely seem like a newborn to us anymore. We laugh as we put on some of your clothes and see that the arms or legs don't quite reach down to your ankles or wrists! You have already gained a lot of control over your neck and back muscles so you surprise us when you lift your head off of our chests when we hold you. Today, Mommy set you down on your play mat so she could use the restroom and when she came back you had rolled over to your side! We love to watch you smile in your sleep and we feel like real smiles will be greeting us soon along with a laugh or two. You have begun to reach out for things and although it will be some time before you are successful, Mommy and Daddy love when you reach out for our face! One of the favorite things that you do is when you are sleeping and relaxed and you throw your hands in the air like a little rapper. Mommy and Daddy cannot help but laugh at that. You are an amazing eater and we are proud to watch you eat well and to see you grow as the days go by. You like to sleep on your side, unless someone is holding you and then you just like to sleep! You are becoming more and more alert each day and Daddy loves holding you as you look around the room. You are most alert if there are lights on because you like to stare at the lights like a little bug! We have spent lots of time with Grammy KiKi and Poppy, and know that there are many other family members and friends who want to spend more time with you. We are excited to see where the next month takes us, know that our heart grows more and more for you each day. We love you MacKenzie!

Hand holding!

Big feet

Our little Family

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Random things I keep leaving out

Here are a few shots from my "belly" photo shoot with my step father. We had to do the obligatory Mom and Dad compare their belly shot!
Matt was exceptionally sweet and good natured and let his love for our little baby show in the pictures!
This was my idea...we are hoping to go through some of them and send them to blue bell in hopes of getting free ice cream for life!

We also have been slowly going through the plethora of pictures that we have surrounding MacKenzie's birth. I began to tear up a little looking through the pictures from the day she was born, she has been such a blessing to us!

This picture is the last picture of Mattie and I as "non parents", this is right before we started to push
And this is our first family photo! We are all pinked out! Matt went out into the waiting room wearing a pink shirt (he also had a blue shirt packed) and all moms who have delivered get the pink gown. It was a nice coincidence that it goes with our little girl!

Also last Monday, MacKenzie got to meet her Uncle Martin. Matt's parents and Martin came down to visit for the day. Uncle Martin interacted with MacKenzie perfectly laughing at her and all of her expressions. I think they will have a wonderful relationship some day. I didn't get any pictures of Martin with MacKenzie, but Deb has some, we will see if we can wrangle them away from her.

Lastly, a lot of people have been asking what we call our little girl. A lot of times we are still using Baby girl, Sweetie, and names of that nature. I have gotten into the weird habit of calling her "Girlfriend" especially when she is fussing at me because she is hungry. My mom, stepfather, and many others have picked up the Mac portion of her name and use that almost exclusively. They like to say she is having a "Mac Attack" whenever she is upset. Matt's mom picked up the Kenzie for a while, but I don't know if it will stick, we will see what she calls her when we visit for Thanksgiving next week!

Old update...home rennovations

I may have posted one of these pictures before, but I never concluded the home renovations.

We obviously finished, for the most part. We have all concrete floors downstairs and laminate upstairs with the exception of the upstairs bathroom. We have repainted the entire inside of the house with the exception of the downstairs closets. We went a little bolder with colors that some people expected, but they are still "normal" enough for us. Our bathroom is blue, the kitchen is cream and chocolate brown, the loft is a darker maroon than before, the living room is green (as seen in the picture below) and the rest of the house are two different neutral colors.
The painter nearly made us lose our mind. What should have taken between one and two weeks ended up taking 4-5 weeks. He never really finished, I made Matt pay him to get him out of our house. There are still several touchups that Matt and I will need to take care of, but living at my mom's and in our own wrecked house was too much for this pregnant (at the time) woman to handle.

Below is a picture of the laminate floors (in progress) and the maroon t.v. room. We are really pleased with the floors (both upstairs and downstairs) and are glad that we are starting to get "resettled" in.
We still need to get the extra bedroom organized (it has turned into a jumbo storage closet) and fix up the desk we moved into the loft, but we are pleased with our progress so far, and very glad that MacKenzie seems to be thriving in the home we have made for her!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Pico!

One of my favorite things to indulge on is chips and some sort of dip. Since I was in middle school, Dad and Mom would throw a Christmas party for all of their business associates. I always enjoyed the party, but really enjoyed the days after when I got to indulge in all of the leftover food, especially the dip. There are very few dips that I do not like...spinach, green onion, regular onion, bean, 7 layer...the list is endless. The possibilities only get better when you breach the Mexican food "dip-age". My mom ate endless amounts of chips and salsa when pregnant with me and this is a tradition of sorts that has continued. In fact, we often have to laugh at Mexican food restaurants when they bring those teeny tiny little saucers of salsa because we need so much more for our mexican food.

I will first post about the "easiest" of the Mexican dips...pico de gallo. It is a simple method.

Chop and seed roma tomatoes (you can use whatever tomatoes you have, but Romas are cheap)
Chop red onion and cilantro
Cut a jalapeno in half and take out the seeds and most of the white "ribs" (this is where the heat is...so proceed with caution in using it...and wash your hands)...dice the jalapeno.
Throw all produce together.
Add lime juice, red wine vinegar (just a splash), and salt to taste.

This is simply the basics...adjust levels of the ingredients to your own particular desires.

Enjoy with tortilla chips!

I will try to do a "series" of posts about salsa and guacamole next!

A week full of firsts

This week we have done a lot...MacKenzie has has a lot of new experiences too!

On Sunday we went on MacKenzie's first big, nonfamily social outing. We went to our small group from church where she sat in Daddy's lap until she got hungry. Daddy is so proud to show off his baby girl so it was nice to sit and visit with grownups for a bit. We then went to a friends surprise party. The place was packed celebrating his passing of the bar exam. With all of the adults mingling and children playing the house was exceptionally noisy, but that did not phase our little girl. She slept in our arms the whole night and only woke a few times. We are very glad that she is doing great so far with our mission of socializing her early. We want her to be well adjusted to being around other people.

On Monday we went to her two week pediatrician appointment. MacKenzie is growing like a weed. She has gained back all of her birth weight and then some, she is now 9 pounds 3 ounces and 22 inches long. The doctor was very impressed that she has gained so much weight on exclusive breast feeding. I am so proud that I can provide her with all of the nourishment she needs. It helps us get through those late night feedings a little easier! Also on Monday MacKenzie's cousin, Cohen, was born. She has not been able to see him, but I am sure that there are plenty of play times and cousin fights in their future!

Wednesday, Daddy had off so we went errand running and Daddy took us to lunch. It is such a special treat for us to go to lunch together and I love that now MacKenzie can go as well. We love spending time together as a family.

Below is a picture of MacKenzie in her bouncer seat. I included this picture in the blog because before I had my own child I never quite understood how important a good bouncer seat was. It is solely because of this item that I am able to take a shower some days or get dinner going. This bouncer is Mommy's best friend because as long as MacKenzie is fed and changed it can provide me with at least 15 minutes to get a few things done. For that, I am eternally grateful!


MacKenzie has also enjoyed some good snuggle time with Daddy and Mommy over the past few days. She is such a sweet little girl and I hope we continue to raise her as such!


Sunday, November 8, 2009

Two weeks old

MacKenzie is now two weeks old. She is changing daily and is growing faster than we can keep up with. It is a little sad for us to grab clothes she hasn't worn yet, hold it up to her, and realize that cramming her long body into a little bitty outfit would be more frustrating than beneficial. Fortunately for us, there have only been a few onesies that she has not been able to wear. We have tried to put everything else on her at least once. She is also learning that her body does not have to be curled up into a ball all the time anymore. As you can see in the picture below she does enjoy stretching out quite a bit.


We do not have a plethora of new information to report about little Miss MacKenzie. We have really enjoyed watching her expressions and growth over the past week. We have had a few rough nights, but it is only because she likes to stay awake while mommy and daddy want to sleep. She has not been crying a huge deal once one of us get up with her to rock her, which is good because at least one of us is getting sleep while the other one is up with her. This is my baby girl almost exactly two weeks after she was born.


We go to the pediatrician tomorrow for her two week appointment. We are hoping she is back at her birth weight (I would be very surprised if she has not surpassed that) and that everything checks out good.

In other news, Mattie has been doing awesome at the bank the past few months. We have needed a bit of a boost in business and that boost has appeared several times over. Mattie is enjoying his job, but I think he misses his girl (girls) when he is at work. Apparently my classes are being little darlings while I am gone (sarcasm) which is making it that much easier for me to want to go back in December and January (more sarcasm).

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Hiccups

video

Our baby likes to hiccup...she hiccuped a lot in the womb and even had hiccups during labor...this is a trend that has continued as you can see!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Our Due Date

Today, November 5th is our due date. We have looked forward to this day for months with excitement and anticipation. Of course, MacKenzie had plans of her own and has made this day more routine than we had planned or thought. It is so strange to think that 38 weeks ago we started this journey. We hoped that something wonderful would happen and that we would be given a child, but knew that sometimes things like this take time. Two weeks later we saw the positive pregnancy test that let us know our little girl was on the way. The following couple of weeks we kept our gift a secret between the two of us. It was nice to have that special time where only the three of us knew about the little life growing inside of me. We cherish that time that we could just look at each other and smile knowing about our little baby. We sent as many good, strong, healthy thoughts her way as possible hoping that those good thoughts would help her cells divide and multiply and that she could grow into the child she was meant to be. A few weeks later we went on our first family vacation. It was great to get "one last hurrah" in for mommy and daddy, but almost as exciting was coming back ready to tell family and friends. We told family slowly, treasuring each experience of letting people into our secret. By the time we made it to the end of the first trimester we had announced to the world that our baby was coming. It made that time go by so quickly. Our first doctor's appointment was in late March. Although we had our positive pregnancy test, I cannot forget the joy to hear the doctor confirm that we had a baby on the way. Seeing our little baby on the ultrasound was an unexpected joy as well. We made it through the second and third trimester on such a high. For the most part, I had little to complain about except for workers on our home renovations. We just wanted everything perfect for our little one to come home to. We continued to go to the doctor and check in on our little one. We got extra ultrasounds to measure her progress and Matt and I enjoyed showing off the pictures of our stubborn baby. With November 5th approaching, we counted down the days with more and more enthusiasm. That is, we counted down the days until I went on bed rest. It was such a strange feeling to go from counting down days to counting up days since we knew that she was not ready to arrive. We wanted her to be the healthiest version of herself and coming 5 weeks early would have posed a difficult and challenging road for her and us. When she did decide to come two weeks early we were excited for her arrival. We finally got to see who the little one growing inside of me was. We had so many questions about who this baby was. Now we have so many questions about who she will be. We have already learned so much about who she is and who we are as parents in the time since she was born until her due date- today. The past 38 weeks have been more than we could have ever imagined and more than we could have ever asked for. We are so looking forward to guiding MacKenzie through life and seeing who she will be. Happy Due Date little MacKenzie...Mommy and Daddy love you very much!!!

From this...

To this...


Monday, November 2, 2009

1 week old

So we have had Baby Girl at home with us for one week and she has graced us with her presence for just over that time. We are so amazed by her each day and measure her progress with joy. We hate to jinx ourselves because she has already been such a good baby. In the past week she has been smiling more and more (and we don't care if it is gas related or not...we like the smiles anyways) and is getting great at opening her eyes and looking around. We are still speculating eye color, but so far they have remained blue. Her hair, which came out fairly dark is getting lighter. Matt says that it gets lighter with each washing, but it is apparent that the new hair that is coming in is definitely lighter. So we might have a blondie on our hands, it is exciting to see even those changes. She is being very good about feeding and if we keep up such good work we will feel very comfortable taking her out into public soon. We want to try to keep her safe during flu season as much as possible though so we will maintain a strict hands off policy with all those germy people out there!!! This past week daddy learned about making sure that MacKenzie was done with the last diaper before putting on a new one. He has had the experience of being used as extra diaperage a few times now. I think MacKenzie likes hearing his reaction to it...I know I do.

We handed out a bit of candy for Halloween and took MacKenzie across the street to meet our neighbors, but didn't do too much else. We did dress her up in a few outfits she received from friends Crystal and Katie and Mrs. Larsen.
MacKenzie covered in candy corn!

Her shirt glows in the dark and says "I love my mummy"

Daddy also went to the store to get a pumpkin which we hallowed out and stuck her inside for some pictures. It was too cute to resist, but pulling her back out of the pumpkin reminded me a little bit of her being pulled out of the womb. That part was definitely strange!

Our Pumpkin!

We are, as I said, amazed by her growth and development and hope to document different changes as much as possible. Here we have Daddy's thumb with her foot...

We are so happy with our Baby Girl...as if you couldn't tell and feel that she is doing an awesome job. We are continuing to adjust and still appreciate all of the family and friends who have come to see her and shown interest in her life. We love that she gets to feel a tremendous amount of love from the people around us!