Thursday, January 28, 2010

Picture Post..

For your Viewing Enjoyment.. (because I know thats the only reason most of you read my blog!)

bored with the camera..

Trying to get the camera..

So proud when she takes steps.. she claps for herself!

Bella at Payton's 1st Birthday party!

Bela is so smart, she reads upside down!

Bella's party attire.

Helping mommy with dinner..

PLaying in the tunnel at Georgia's house!

Re-organizing mommy's tupperware.. again.

Sticking out the tongue...

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I despise Barney.. and other ramblings.

So, Bella does not watch Barney. I can't stand him. i don't really know why, other than it just creeps me out. I guess when I was younger, I heard a lot of bad things that Barney would do to the kids,and it just.. Well. I hate him. So, no Barney in my house, for as long as I can help it! Bella does love the Sprout channel, an The Wiggles are her favorite. She absolutely loves them, and dances whenever they are on. Other favorites are The WonderPets, and Yo Gabba Gabba. She of course will watch anything, but those are the ones that capture her attention. We also like to watch The Bonnie Hunt Show, and Ellen. I try not to use the TV to keep her entertained, but it just seems to be on all day.

Bella is on cold milk now, which wasn't a hard transition from having it warmed. She will only take it from a bottle though, and I'm TRYING to get her to take it from a sippy, but she just isn't a fan. She knows how to use a sippy, and will drink water or juice from it, just not milk. All day yesterday, her only option was milk from a sippy. If she was thirsty, she got milk from a sippy. Needless to say, she didn't get much fluid, so, by late afternoon, she got a sippy of just water, and at bedtime, she got a bottle of milk. Today I gave her a bottle in the morning, and she only drank a couple ounces. I poured that milk into a sippy for breakfast, an she did take a few sips. At least she didn't act all dramatic and gag like I was trying to poison her. Seriously, that's what she would do! So some progress. I don't know what my rush is to drop the bottle. I just want to be done with them, ya know? I guess I have to make myself slow down, and work on maybe just getting her to drop the afternoon bottle...

She has also been taking more and more steps on her own, she just knows that it's faster to crawl, and easier for her,so she does that instead. She will start with a couple steps, then drop to her bottom and crawl to wherever she wanted to go. She'll get there, I know she will. It just gets a little frustrating for me when I see that all her friends, who are younger, are walking, and have been walking since before they turned one! But, I try to put it into perspective, she DOES have a pretty big vocabulary for a one year old, and her friends don't say as many words as she does. At least, not that I know of. So I know babies develop one thing at a time - gross motor, verbal, fine motor skills.. and while they are working on one, they don't really advance too much in the other. So, while Bella has been focusing on becoming a chatterbox, her friends have been focusing on how to get from one place to another on two feet. So, I know she will get there, I just have to relax!

Today I'm supposed to go have lunch with my friend Melanie, and another friend of hers. We are going to Panera, which I LOVE. But at the same time, I feel bad about going, we need to save more money, and here I am going out to lunch. I do keep it as cheap as possible when I do... and it does me good to get out. I start to get all depressed and lonely and not in a good place if I stay stuck in the house too much. Which is why I love my mom's group, because we can do playdates, and it doesn't cost anything.. except the gas to drive there. And I try to stick to the ones close to home. There are some that are farther away, so I usually skip those.

Anyhow, no pics in this post, no time. Maybe I'll make a post later of pictures. You can also check out our photo site.. I just updated that!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Happy Birthday Baby!

My beautiful 1 year old!

Bella is 1 year old! I absolutely can't believe it! We have been so blessed to have such wonderful family and friends to help us celebrate! She is on whole milk now, which she is NOT a fan of. I tried giving it to her cold, and from a sippy.. not happening. She thinks juice should come from her sippy. So we are warming the milk and in a bottle, but I am slowly decreasing the temperature of the milk. At this point, it is just below room temperature, which is good. Once she is used to it cold, then I will work on transitioning her to a sippy. I find myself wanting to rush this process, but I know it will happen, and she is only a year old.

"Where's your nose?"

Bella is able to take steps from me to daddy, and vice versa. She has also taken a couple of steps to furniture, or from it to me, but she has yet to realize she can just go on her own. She loves to walk though, and if you let her, she will walk you all over the house, all day long! Loves to hold both hands, and will only walk holding both hands! I love doing it, but my back hurts after a few minutes, and then she gets mad because I stop. I have a very strong willed little girl. She knows what she wants, and when she wants it, and that is usually NOW! She throws fits, screams, and arches her back. I've never heard such a high pitch before.. I'm sure she's hit octaves that even Mariah Carey can hit!

Bella has 9 teeth now! 4 top front, 3 bottom front, her right 1yr molar is pretty much through now, and her left 1 year molar has just cut through. This teething stuff is insane though! She wakes up screaming and crying in pain, and she is so super fussy and cranky. Right before a tooth cuts through, she clings to me like a baby lemur to its' mama! I'm lucky to get to go to the bathroom alone!
Bella's Christmas gift from her Uncle & Godfather, Scott. He got it in Little Italy in NYC.

She has become pretty reliable in terms of routine.. she wakes up between 6am and 7:30am (although lately has been 6:30am!) She either nurses or has a bottle.. She is weaning from her morning nursing.. bittersweet for me. Then breakfast about 30-45 minutes after she nurses/bottle. Nap is *usually* anywhere between 9:15 and 10am, for anywhere between 30 minutes to an hour and a half. Typically on the shorter side though. Lunch is at 11:30am, and I better not be late for that! Then a bottle of milk around 12:30 or 1pm, nap again between 1:30 and 2:30pm, for at least an hour, sometimes longer. Then a snack if she gets up early.. Dinner is at 5pm (and again, don't you dare be late!) Then straight into the tub after she's done eating, then playtime for a bit, bottle again at 6:40pm or 6:45pm, and into bed at 7pm (no later that 7:15pm).

Bella decided to re-organize my tupperware cabinet (the only one without a lock). She does this daily. Multiple times.

We have ZERO issues putting her to bed at night, and when she isn't dealing with teething pain, she usually sleeps all night. Nap times are a bit of a struggle. I've darkened her room, which had helped, but she's just not a napper. She isn't ready to drop her morning nap yet, but at the same time, she doesn't want to nap. Afternoons are a bit better, but still a struggle. Hopefully it will get easier soon! We were doing really well before the holidays, but with all the traveling we did, schedules just got messed up, then we were sick, but now we are going to get back on schedule! (I HOPE!)
Bella's birthday party at home, Jan 10th, 2009.

Bella got her pictures taken, and they came out beautifully! I've include a few, I hope you like them, and if you do, and ever need great pictures done, please check out Rebekah Gonzalez of R. Gonzalez Photos. Tell her I sent you!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

2009 re-cap

Hey everyone! I Hope ya'll had a great Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or other Holiday, and a safe and Happy New year.

Reflecting back on 2009, it went by way too fast! Bella is just a few days away from turning 1, and yet it seems like she was just born! This year has brought happiness and sadness, but overall it has been a wonderful year.

Obviously the best thing to happen is my beautiful daughter, Isabella Grace, who was born on January 5th, 2009. She has grown so much in a year, and I am anxious to see how she grows in the upcoming year. We have been blessed to have such wonderful, supportive and loving family to help us out whenever we have needed it. This year has brought so many changes! Another is that I am a stay at home mommy. It is what I've always wanted to do, and for it to become a reality is absolutely amazing. It has been challenging, for sure, but I would not have traded one second for anything in the world. I have made some wonderful friends over the past year, some online, and some in real life, and they have been a wonderful support to me, as well. I don't think I would have remained sane this year without them.

Another change this year was in Kevin's work schedule. Instead of being on midnights, he switched to day work in the fall. At first we were worried about how it would affect us, since we've been so used to him working midnights (it's all he's ever worked!) but we really love the new shift! Yes, he does have to get up at 3:30am, and he doesn't get home until 5:30 or 6pm, but we have dinner together, evenings together, go to bed together every night, and his day's off aren't spent sleeping. We truly love our new schedule, and even though it did take some adjusting on my own part to not having him there all day, I absolutely love the trade-off. Bella benefits from it as well, she gets to see daddy every night, and he is more interactive with her since he's not completely sleep-deprived all the time! (oh yeah, and I got to take down the room darkening shades in our room!)

Some of the challenges of being a stay at home mom are financial ones. Because I am not bringing in any money, I am constantly trying ti 'justify' all my purchases. I use coupons and try not to go anywhere without them. At first it was hard, and although I was saving money, I was buying lots of things we didn't need, because of a good 'deal'. I have since learned to only buy what I need.. okay, well mostly only what I need! I do still splurge, but I REALLY think about it, see what deals I can get, and research prices (well, mostly for larger purchases) to see where I can get the cheapest and best price/deal. This is something I've never had to do, but I have been trying my best, and I think, for the most part, I've been pretty successful.

This is supposed to be a re-cap of the year.. SO.. We've been to PA multiple times, Bella's Nana and Papaw and Uncle David (my family) came up in March to visit, My grandparents came up from Tennessee in the end of April to visit.. We got new furniture in April as well! May was Apple Blossom, and that is always fun! In June, My sister came up with her son, and Bella got to meet her Aunt Jennifer and her cousin Austin! It was a great time, and I wish they lived closer! July was Bella's first camping trip! We had a blast up at the camp in PA, can't wait to do it again this year! August was a long road trip to my parent's house in Arkansas.. Bella did great in the car, and it was wonderful to have her meet all our other family down there! October is when Kevin switched to day work.. and Bella's first Halloween! November was Thanksgiving, and we had (have) so very much to be thankful for! and then December.. Christmas.. Bella's first real cold - a sinus cold turned into double ear infections, which led to her first time on Amoxicillan, which did NOT agree with her, and did not work.. it gave her a bad bad diaper rash. She was switched to Cefprozil (or something that sounded like that!) which worked much much better! We spent Christmas day in Winchester, and came to PA the day after, which is where we still are! We will head home on Sunday, January 3rd.