Wednesday, December 31, 2008

"My Baby's First Christmas" - Chapter One: Christmas Morning

Okay, yes, so I am a little (okay a LOT bit late) at posting this. Since I've been back in Indy, I've been concentrating on getting Brett to go to bed when I'm home...and I worked Monday & Tuesday. So, this is really the first chance I've had to get this together! I swore I'd get at least part of this up before 2009.

Anyway, Christmas was a busy day for us! We started here in Indy and had a good long Christmas morning with Brett. We wanted to establish a good Christmas morning ritual at home now that we have our little guy. Mommy snuck down and took a few pictures before Brett came down...

Brett's "Baby's First Christmas" ornament...

Looks like Santa might have put something in his stocking!

What is this that Santa put under the tree? No it's not "Bear vs. Colt" LOL... it's a giant stuffed teddy bear and a wooden rocking horse!

Mom, I dig this bear. I think we'll be good pals!

Giddyup pardner!

Oooo.. pretty shiny paper! I think I like this better than what's inside!

My mommy's okay, but this Santa guy is waaayy cool!

Below is a video of Brett opening his very first present. We kind of had to show him how to rip the paper, but he got the hang of it pretty quickly. By the end of the day, he was a pro!

The rest of Christmas to hopefully be posted here soon. Basically, we made a stop at my family Christmas in Indy before hitting the road to Chicago. Long day, but Brett was an angel for it all!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Cyber Baby

So, I am a VW fanatic. I log onto their site from time to time. Today I saw this fun feature on the new Routan Page. You can upload a pic of two people and create a "cyber" baby. This is what they came up with when they combined Steve & me. Sorta kinda resembles Brett. Too addictive. You all have to try this!

Create Your OwnMake a Routan Baby

Monday, December 22, 2008

All I Want For Christmas....

'Member how I said a couple of posts ago that Brett hasn't cut any teeth yet?

Yeah. Scratch that.

For MONTHS this child has been drooling nonstop.... sometimes he'd wake up screaming in the night. He's exhibited ALL of the signs of teething except for one. Yeah, that would be actually having teeth.

Yesterday we were at my parent's house for the extended family Christmas and my grandma asked me if Brett had any teeth yet. I told her the same thing I always say... that we've been anticipating teeth for months.. yada yada. Then I stuck my finger in his mouth to feel his gums like I routinely do. This time on the bottom I felt 2 little sharp ridges. Later, upon further inspection I was able to make out that these are his two front bottom teeth! It's almost as if the song was written for him, cuz he's getting two for Christmas!

I'm happy for him... he'll soon be able to start gnawing on cheerios and small slices of banana. But, honestly, I was kind of secretly hoping (selfishly) that this would wait until after he was a year old. My brother, Aaron, didn't cut teeth until he was over a year old, so I knew it was genetically possible for Brett. If he was on formula, I think I'd be delighted! But no. I made a strong decision to nurse exclusively for the first year. Um, yeah. Without getting into TMI, you get the idea why on a selfish level I'm a wee bit terrified. Any mothers out there have some good advice?

Oh, and BTW, the doctor's office called today and all of my bloodwork came back normal. Good news, yet frustrating because I don't have a clear cut answer for my fogginess.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Friday, December 19, 2008

Screw It - I Just Can't Come Up With A Clever Title For This Post

So I went to the doctor yesterday. I had been planning to go anyway for my annual physical, but with my level of spaciness lately (and yes, I guess I did open myself up to being made fun of by phrasing it that way) I decided to ask her about it.

Her thoughts? The hormones surging through my body from nursing were making me very relaxed, combined with new mother fatigue and stress. She recommended exercise (which I have been trying to do) and more rest. I also got my blood drawn to test my hemoglobin level, and my thyroid as well. We'll see what they say. I've just never felt like this before.

She told me to talk to her after I had been 1 year postpartum and had weened Brett. So, I have to followup in the spring. She also recommended dropping all of the baby weight before we try for #2. I really want to! I need to really kick myself back into gear after the holidays. I'd done so well for awhile and then kind of lost it this past month (as we all do after Thanksgiving). I think I've reversed the scale's momentum. Ah, well. At least I bought a pair of jeans last week with the number "8" on them. I still have 15-20 pounds to go to get back into the "2"'s and "4"'s in my closet. I wonder if I'll ever see them again.

But if this weekend is any indication, I probably wont be seeing my beloved skinny jeans anytime soon. The traditional "annual Graunke family cookie baking weekend" is in full effect. I've blogged about this before. As Steve's brother (who is coming from Lexington to bake with Steve and I, since we aren't all driving to Chicago to bake with his parents and other brother) said, it's "X-treme" cookie baking. We normally bake like 5-7 types of cookies. This year I think we may scale back and try for 3 varieties. Then again, when Steve and his brother get to the store tonight to buy the ingredients and mass quantities of beer (c'mon, it's a party!) things could get a little out of hand. Too bad I'll need to stay behind with the sleeping baby.....

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Okay, thanks Andrea :)

I'll play along....

The object of the picture tag is to:

1) Choose the 4th folder where you store your pictures on your computer
2) Select the 4th picture in the folder
3) Explain the picture
4) Tag 4 people to do the same

NO CHEATING! (cropping, editing, etc!)

I think mine is probably the most random of everyone's I've seen today....

I was incredibly tempted to cheat, but I didn't.

This "picture" was taken while my mom was getting her tree partially up so that I could do my photo shoot with Brett for our Christmas cards. She's in the picture carrying the tree skirt. I did a few test shots to see how the lighting was. I never delete any pics, I just always upload everything to the computer from my camera.

Now I have to choose 4 people? Hmmm... I pick:

1. Leah
2. Emily
3. Suellen
4. Brandie

Monday, December 15, 2008

Rubber Ducky You're The One...

So, Brett has been enjoying putting various objects in his mouth lately and making noises. I think he just likes to see how different sounds are made. This is all very amusing... especially when he recently discovered that his rubber ducky could double as a musical instrument... (and yes, that is Steve's voice in the background. I swear he wanted to have kids just so he could act like a kid again!)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Destination: Bear

So, we've been encouraging Brett to start crawling. He's working on it... he just doesn't have all of the moving parts in sync. Usually he'll try to do everything at once and end up in a big face plant! Recently, we've been pointing him toward a "goal" and most of this time it's his famous teddy bear chair. Here are some shots of Brett with his goal in mind (and yes, I took the goofy face pictures while he was doing this).

Here I go, Mom & Dad! I'm going to go have a chat with Mr. Bear...

Well, I guess I can always stop & pause for a photo op....

This crawling business is hard work! I think I'll take a nap instead.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

My Silly, Silly Boy Makes Silly, Silly Faces

Within the past two weeks, Brett has been making this "dopey" (as Steve calls it) face. He'll curl one lip under and stick the other one out. We can't even mimick him because really, the only way to make this face is if you don't have any teeth! (Which he still doesn't BTW).

Friday, December 12, 2008

Stuck With My Head In A Trance

Something doesn't feel right with me lately. I don't know exactly how to tangibly describe it other than, "Am I living in a dream?" "Am I really still alive?". Things just seem blurry and trance-like. I don't even feel large doses of major emotions. Like, when my iPod was stolen. I was immediately upset but not to the LEVEL that I should have been upset. Kind of like the U2 song, "Numb". Or, if you've seen my favorite movie "Garden State".. remember that scene in the beginning of the movie where he's drifting through his life, aimlessly walking into work and not caring about anything? That feels like me.

I am not sure what causes this. I am hoping I don't have like a weird brain tumor or something. Ever since this past summer, my vision has been a bit blurry. Fine... maybe I need to go to the eye doctor. But, especially lately, everything seems to be covered with a thin film. I want to reach out and touch things to make sure that they actually do exist. Wow, writing this makes me think something IS really wrong with me.

I worry about driving. I HATE driving anyway... but I'm more concerned about it now. For example, last weekend, my mom had me run to Clay Terrace for her. I don't particularly like driving in Clay Terrace.. all of the roundabouts and crazy people crossing. I thought I would hit someone. It feels like I'm kind of driving in my sleep.

I told my mom about my concerns and she said that when she is incredibly exhausted, she feels the same way. Maybe it's new mother fatigue? An interesting point on my fatigue now too... it's changed. When I get tired, I don't feel like I have to sleep, like I used to. Maybe it's because I know I have to be there for my baby?

Anyway, I'm going to the doctor for an annual physical next Wednesday and I'm hoping she'll have some answers, because I'm really hoping the brain tumor (or something like that) theory isn't true. Let's hope anyway...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Everyday Grammar Excellence

Remember that post I wrote a few weeks back about crazy reoccurring dreams I have? Well, one of them has come true... I am officially back in high school!

Ah, how the social networking sites have brought us all back together. When I first heard about Myspace and Facebook I thought, nah. I'll never sign up for one of those sites. They were all so intimidating and overwhelming at once. And, as much as I'd like to see what everyone ELSE was up to, would I like to share my own personal life with the world? Well, my pregnant BFF and her hubby were visiting us oh, about 2 1/2 years ago now (I can't believe it's been that long!) and she suggested I join Myspace. She was on there and told me about all of these old ghosts from our past she'd reconnected with. This piked my interest, and that afternoon I created a Myspace account and subsequently opened Pandora's box.

I had been timid about trying to re-connect with a lot of these people. Not so much high school friends, but college friends. As a lot of you know, I left Pi Phi with a very very bitter taste in my mouth. Bad things happened and there were a lot of people who I never wanted to see again. It me took several years to get over what had happened. And, joining myspace actually helped in the healing process. Re-forming old friendships was wonderful and actually lead to me meeting up for lunches and dinners with a lot of these old friends.

Well, the luster of Myspace has somewhat worn off for me. I don't really post anything to my account anymore. I'll just check in a couple of times a day to see what people are up to and update my status.

However, Facebook is a whole 'nother beast. I joined Facebook about a year and a half ago, when no one was on. After I signed up, I'd log in from time to time to accept friends who found me, but I never actively participated. Until this summer. Suddenly EVERYONE was on Facebook, and it was a whole other group of people to catch up with. I even (reluctantly) put a friend request out there to someone who I left on bad terms with. She accepted, but has yet to write back. I'm crossing my fingers that I can at least exchange a few friendly emails with her.

And, in addition to old friends, you know who else lurks on Facebook? Old high school teachers! Seriously! I about had to take a step back when an old religion teacher found me and requested me. It was actually pretty cool... a teacher who knew me all those years ago actually remembered me. I mean, we all remember our teachers, but really, they have like hundreds of students. How can they remember them all?

Well, to come to the point of this long-winded post, a high school friend referred me to another teacher on Facebook. I was excited to see this teacher, for I hadn't heard anything from her in years. For old LuHi alumn, this is our dear Miss Butz. Well, Mrs. Kolva now - to be correct. Every freshman at LuHi from the late 80's through the mid-90's had her for English class. I've never met another person like her. Somehow she had a magical ability to demand respect from every student in the room.. even the trouble makers. She was kind of like a "Mary Poppins". You wanted to please her and impress her with your knowledge. And, beneath her proper and formal exterior you could tell that she deeply cared for each and every student in her classroom. We all loved Miss Butz and around my senior year she got married and moved to Salt Lake City. I was one of the lucky ones who got to attend her wedding.

Anyway, suddenly "Miss Butz" was my friend. And, Miss Butz has now gathered several of her old students together into a "group" called Everyday Grammar Excellence. She hands out assignments and grades them. It's a bit intimidating, but I love it! And so does everyone else. It has me re-thinking about my grammar and the casual way I talk in my blogs. I definitely don't take the time to see if my sentences are correct and, although I'm relatively confident in my spelling, I'll do things like this..... in order to add a pause. Or, I'll break up words into sentences that don't really make sentences. For example... FOR REAL?

This is too much fun and I encourage any old LuHi alum to find Miss Butz and join her group. Now, if you'll excuse me, I must think about how I am going to use "lie, laid and lain" in a paragraph :).

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Christmas Cutie

Again, as Steve and I are trying to conserve $$, we decided that instead of going to get professional photos taken for Christmas - we'd do our own. Thankfully my mom had started to set up her Christmas tree this past weekend so I was able to get these taken at her house (we haven't even BEGUN to get our decorations started... hopefully this weekend). But, we got a few good ones that we really liked. One day I hope to get professional pictures taken. After all of the horror stories and expense though I am a bit hesitant.

Also, just an FYI... Mandy has her second round of chemo today so please send good thoughts and vibes her way.

Without further ado, here are just a few of the pics I took...