Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The F Word....


I have mother's guilt and it involves the F word.

No, no, it's not THAT word.

In fact, I can say that word a little easier than I can say this F word.

I will give you two clues:

1. it is liquid

2. Ella has not needed it until yesterday.

Yup, FORMULA is my f word.

Now, I know there is nothing wrong with formula. In fact, I had a really open mind when I became a new mom. I had a really great perspective. I was going to try to nurse and take it day by day. Days went by and the pain subsided, I could wear a shirt again, and nursing became so easy. My goal of getting through the day grew into month by month goals then making it to 12 months. And I was doing REALLY well; we made it 10 months and 7 days. And then for some unknown reason, production stopped. Maybe it was the bad bite (OUCH!), the trip to Florida and the time change, or maybe it was just time.

So, yesterday for the first time ever, I had to supplement with formula. And like many things such as returning to work, talking about it was far worse than actually doing it. Ella devoured her 2/3 breast milk bottle and 1/3 formula based bottle in no time and we all survived.

Besides, she can't BF forever; that would be weird!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Brand New Shoes




People say I look like my daddy.

I have his facial structure,

his mouth,

even his soft feet.

But I do have some of my mommy in me.

I have her love of shoes!



My new shoes even pass the taste test!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Florida Vacation~ The Trip Home

It's me again, Ella. I am again guest blogging for Mommy since she has social studies tests to grade. I told her just to give all her kiddos A's, but she won't. Anyways, I thought I would update the blog so she could work on her paper grading. Aren't I thoughtful?

Anywho, I did leave a teaser that this entry was going to be about our return trip. Indeed it will. Let me emphasize that I was a REALLY good girl on all THREE travel days to Florida. People were constantly stopping to talk, flirt and compliment me and I just ate up all the attention. I really was that good. And this is where I made my mistake; I set the expectation bar too high.

So this is my explanation:

1. I was REALLY tired. We were go go go all vacation long and the sun exposure did not help.

2. My mommy and daddy woke me at 3 am for a 2 hour car ride BEFORE our first flight. We all know that the best sleep happens in a bed during routine sleeping hours. Duh!

3. I did not want to leave Grammy and Grampy. I was protesting.

4. I was squished. Airline seats are tight to begin with, but there was a rather large gentleman sitting next to my daddy. Hence, my daddy was squished into my mommy and we were all squished into the window. Not comfortable even if you are sitting on the two people you love most in the world.

5. I had to eat crappy packaged purees. What happened to the fresh stuff and the gelato I had a taste of?

6. I filled my diaper and when I say filled, I mean FILLED. They did not change me for over an hour. I know the seat belt light was on and everything, but for the sake of everyone on board the plane and for my bottom, I should have been changed. It was really not my fault that my diaper became over saturated and leaked all over mommy.

7. We had a 3 hour layover in SEATAC. So let me lay this out for you. A 2 hour car ride, a 6 hour flight, a 3 hour layover, and a 30 minute flight. I don't care if you are a saint or an angel, a day like this is no fun. I can guarantee you, that my mommy was having a hard time keeping it together. She wanted to fuss, stomp her feet, and throw a mini-tantrum. I know. She told me.

So, when all is said and done, I might not have been a perfect angel on the return trip but I couldn't have been that bad; mommy and daddy are already talking about Spring Break next year!


1,976,567 Sloppy Kisses,
Ella

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Well Done!

Look what I can do!


video

We're BAAAAACK!

OMG! It has been sooooo long, but I have been a very busy little girl! I went to visit my Grammy and Grampy in Florida this past week. Let me tell you all about it!


It took us FOREVER to get there and I am only slightly exaggerating. We flew to Seattle on Sunday and stayed in a hotel. Then on Monday we flew to Orlando and stayed in another hotel. On Monday we drove 4 hours to Naples. My mommy and daddy learned a few lessons. 1. Always, always, always fly direct no matter how much the tickets cost or in their case, flying privileges. 2. When sharing a hotel room with me, I dictate bedtime. If you stay up, I stay up. I bet next time they get a suite. This would have been a good idea since I do hit the hay at 6:30. But, I must say, I was a pretty agreeable little girl. Three days of travel tired me out. I even slept the entire 4 hours from Orlando to Naples.



Finally I arrived to Grammy and Grampy's. Grammy dressed me up in some of my new clothes. She likes to buy me my wardrobe and I am NOT joking! My mom had to bring an extra suitcase for my new digs. I also wore my hat from cousin Jennifer. I love it. And the shirt I am modeling in this picture if from Mrs. Edwards. She likes to buy me dolls.



I went swimming, but I was very diligent about protecting my fair skin from the sun and wrinkles.


I turned 10 months old while in Florida. I brought my E for my monthly birthday shot, but I was not very cooperative.



I got to spend time with my Grampy. He always calls me "Sweetie" or "Lovey".


We went to the beach. It took my entourage 60 minutes to pack for the beach, 40 minutes to drive to the beach, and then they only let me stay for 30 minutes! They say it was because I was tired, but that is so not true! I think THEY were hungry. I was perfectly happy eating my sand toys and sand.


I had a blast!


Mommy and I played in the sand and even went in the water.


I swam more.


And I spent lots of time with Grammy. She sure does love me and I love her too. She let mommy and daddy go on dates while we played.


I also had gelato which mommy and daddy emphasized that it was a treat.

As you can see, Florida was a blast! I can't wait to go back. Tune in tomorrow and I will tell you all about my trip home. I might have been easy on the way to Florida, but not so much on the way back.

A million kisses and a boatload of hugs,
ELLA

Friday, March 19, 2010

Fabulous Friday

I am at school again. I have conferences today from 8-12 with only 4 scheduled conferences. It is 8:57 and I only have one remaining. I will be productive after I get my day's blog posted. Afterall, I have tests to grade and I would really like to be 100% ready for March 29th, the day we return from break. And I would not mind watching a few March Madness games. School is eerily quiet as 99.9% of the teachers logged their 18 hours of conferences Wednesday and Thursday. I just don't have the stamina to do that and that would mean I would not have seen Missy Moo two days in a row.

Today is… Friday, March 19th and I am 2 and half hours away from Spring Break!

Outside my window... The sun is shining and a man is jogging the track in his work clothes. Seriously. He is wearing an untucked collared shirt, black slacks, and shiny shoes. I guess he had the urge to run and the urge was so powerful he did not have time to put on sweats or he was running late to work but did not want to compromise his morning jog! Ewww! He is going to be stinky at work today.

I am thinking... that I have a TON to do. I would like to organize the office but I have to pack for our upcoming trip. A soon to be 10 month old requires A LOT of items. I am a bit stressed.

I am thankful for... Ry guy. He made real oatmeal this morning with cranberries and it was gooooood.

I am wearing... jeans and a bright peach J.Crew jacket. It is super cute with ruffley sleeves and edging. It makes me happy. I want more girly clothes like this that cover my belly and make me feel cheery.

I am going... to grade papers, lesson plan, pack, and see R& M today. It will be a fun day and I will be footloose and fancy-free soon enough.

I am reading... nothing. I just finished a YA book, THE HUNGER GAMES and I LOVED it. Seriously.

From the kitchen… Martha Stewart pasta recipe with sausage and onions tonight. Cathocalians can eat meat during LENT, didn't you know?

Around the house... dust bunnies and baby-proofing tools. The house is picked up but needs a scrubbing. I guess that is what next Sunday is for.

One of my favorite things... chirping birds. Spring is just around the corner. Oh, and I am getting a pedi and mani tomorrow and I can't wait. The remains of my last pedi (September) is growing out and only visible on my big toe.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A Mind Of Her Own




This morning as I was showering and rushing off to conferences, I was thinking about a possible blog topic. And because I worked a thirteen hour day yesterday and only saw Ella long enough to change her morning diaper, I have nothing fresh. But surely, I could come up with a topic, right? And then my mommy brain raced off to another topic and another, finally thinking about our good friends, R & M, who are finding out the gender of their peanut on Friday. It brought me back.

When we first found out we were pregnant with Ella, Ryan and I had many conversations (or friendly debates) on topics such as baby names (which is still a favorite topic of mine) and finding out baby's gender. I flipped back and forth, some days wanting to know, other days not. Ultimately, Ryan made up my mind when he challenged me by saying, " Yeah, right. You HAVE to know. There is NO WAY you could wait that long." That did it; I wanted to wait.

However, Ryan wanted to know. And he wanted to know more than I wanted to wait. Aren't I a good wife? So, we made our big ultrasound appointment early on Christmas Eve. What a gift! We planned to have the technician write the answer down and then open the envelope at Christmas Dinner, as our final holiday surprise. But then it snowed. And snowed. And snowed. True to Oregon snow days, it shut down the city and canceled ultrasound appointments for days. There was a chance that our appointment wouldn't even happen as planned. And even though I did not really want to know the gender because I wanted to prove my point to Ryan, I most certainly wanted to have the ultrasound.

We glued ourselves to the TV, watching the cancelations scroll at the bottom of the page for hours the night before. We woke early to double check and luckily, our clinic was open for the first time in days. Our appointment was on!

The appointment went on for what seemed like ever. The technician carefully checked the heart and all the vital organs. Then came the time for the writing of the reveal. The tech poked and prodded my large baby belly, encouraged me to roll over, and even had me get up and walk around. After several curious minutes, she informed us the baby was not being cooperative; it's legs were crossed. She then insisted on one more try. So, she poked, prodded, and I walked around. However, the only change that occurred was the Ella crossed her legs even tighter! She had a mind of her own. I was silently happy that we still had a surprise baby.

So, there was no envelope to open at Christmas Dinner and no big reveal during the holidays. But, Ella did send me a message. She was rooting for momma all along! And out big reveal happened on an even bigger day than Christmas!
And I proved myself to the hubs, which I always love to do!

Monday, March 15, 2010

I Think We Have ...

A LEFTY!


Exhibit A



Exhibit B



Exhibit C

Ella's Easter Basket


I have never bought an Easter basket before, so I might have gone a bit overboard. $50 is a bit much for an Easter basket, but it is quite cute!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A Peak Into My Weekend...#2

Hi, it's me again, Ella. Mommy is taking another break from blogging. In fact, I think this might be a Sunday night thing. She does deserve to sit in front of the TV and zone out without any other distractions every once in awhile! I had a very fun weekend. Mommy and daddy were both home so we had lots of family time.

1. I got to hang out with the girls on Saturday at the bridal salon. We went to watch Aunt Gillian try on wedding dresses for her September wedding. I was on my best behavior for... 4 gowns and then I had enough. I can tell you that Aunt Gillian looked stunning in them all.

2. We made our weekend rounds to Costco and Babies 'R Us. Still no patio set at Costco. However, Mom and Dad were true to their word and stayed away from the processed hot dog. I had a mini-fit at Costco because I wanted a book. Only 3 people admired my cuteness. I must be losing my touch. Note to self: must work on my flirting skills.

3. Babies 'R Us was a blast. I got a few new toys for my upcoming plane ride to Florida. Mom and dad think they might be good distractions for the LONG cross-country flight. They have no idea. I also got some Mum Mums and some new graham cracker treats. I am excited for those since they are the closest things to cookies that are in my immediate future. I also got a baby gate. I have always wanted one of them! (Sarcasm.)

4. I ate spinach for the first time. Yum! Anything tastes good with sweet potato. I also had some of mom's pizza cheese and I REALLY enjoyed that!.

1,000 kisses and a truckload of hugs,
Ella

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Uh- Oh!




We can't Ella-proof the house quick enough! Missy Moo is determined. The cabinets and the drawers are the magic gatekeepers of many wonderful gadgets and she is determined to explore them. Sadly, it was a homemade shower gift from Julie that paid the price. I can say with confidence that I am sure we have many broken plates, bowls, and possessions in our future.

Happy Birthday, Grampy!



I



LOVE




YOU!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Book Review: Book Sneeze

Erin, a good friend of mine, sent me a link weeks ago to join Book Sneeze. Book Sneeze sends you a free book to read and review in exchange for writing an honest book review about the book on your blog and and another website. I, of course, jumped at the chance and thought I could at least read and review children books.

Anyways, here is my review:
The Flowering Cross by Beth Ryan and illustrated by Renee Graef is a sweet Christian book for children. It would be a perfect book for the Easter Bunny to deliver to elementary-aged children, as it explains the meaning of Easter in a simple and interesting format. However, what impressed me most was the parallel story told within the book.

Katie lives next door to an older man, Jack. Jack is a bit gruff and misunderstood by the neighborhood children. However, Katie's mom encourages and models neighborly behavior to Jack through kind gestures. She brings him soup when he is sick, bakes him pies, and invites him to church services. He always declines the invitation to church, but Katie persists. Eventually Jack warms up to her family, especially Katie. On Easter Katie is allowed to pick flowers from his beautiful garden to decorate her cross and while she is there, Jack decides to accompany her to church.

This story was delightful and I especially loved the illustrations. I'd give this book 4 stars.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
I review for BookSneeze

Something Cooking in the Kitchen

I think we will have a helper soon....


video

This Hurts My Heart

 Blogs share the events and lives of families.  For the most part, the events shared are happy and joyous occasions: birthdays, funny quotes, holidays, and everyday life.  However, some blogs chronicle the struggles of families.  I have come across one such blog.  THIS blog makes my heart hurt.  It makes my heart heavy.  And it reinforces the fact that I am incredibly lucky.  To be honest with you, I would not click that link.  Instead, be thankful for your family's health, the laughter the escapes from your little ones, and the simple things in life.  Because all those things can change in an instant.

But this blog has inspired me to donate to a really good cause (that and the radio-a-thon I caught last week).  You can tell that I have evolved when I became a mom.  No more do I donate to the Humane Society in honor of our dog, Lancey  I do love him and miss him, but it is the children like Layla that I would prefer to help.

If you talk to the big man tonight or the powers that be, say a little prayer for a little one named Layla.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Making Memories

Ryan and I have fabulous memories from our childhoods.  One of his favorite memories was The Birthday Plate.  On his birthday he got to eat off a special plate that said, " TODAY YOU ARE SPECIAL."  Anyways, I think he is special everyday, but that is besides the point.  But for some reason, that plate made birthdays better, food tastier, and special memories.

We would like to keep this tradition alive.  Here is the link to an etsy shop that makes unbelievably cute personalized plates.  I love how this one is so bright and cheery!


One tradition that I grew up with was having Halloween Parties at out house.  We would dress in our costumes, bob for apples, and eat powdered doughnuts off a string. It was good old fashion fun.  I can't wait to do this for Ella and her future friends.  Nothing beats the excitement of Halloween, the promise of sugar, and the excuse to gulp down a powdered doughnut!

After all, it is about making memories!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A Peek Into My Weekend

Hi!  It is me, Ella.  I am guest blogging for my mommy.  She is way too pooped to put even an ounce of effort into this post.  Apparently my new found mobility has left her tired.  You would think that since I am sleeping through the night from 6:30 pm to 6:30 am, that she would have more get up and go.  Nope, not the case.  Maybe we should prescribe her some Red Bull.

Anyways, this was my weekend in a nutshell:

1.  I flirted with anyone who looked my way at Costco on Saturday AND Sunday.  Yes, we went to COSTCO twice this weekend.  Mom and dad are looking for a patio set.

2.  I opened EVERY cabinet and drawer in the kitchen that I could get my hands on.  I really love the drawer that holds all the random kitchen utensils.  I even managed to chew and dribble on the measuring cup.  I must remember to check that drawer out again tomorrow.

3.  I enjoyed my fair share of Cheerios while I watched mommy and daddy scarf down COSTCO polish dogs.  They swear they are not going to eat them ever again after they started to have some serious food consumption guilt.  I think it is so weird that they eat such gross  processed food while they are so strict about what they feed me.  Hypocrites!

4.  I browsed the shoe selection at Nordstrom and debated on purchasing a new spring dress.

5.  I sabotaged church by "napping" at just the right time.  My parents always fall for that trick.

6.  I experimented with drinking from my sippy cup.

7.  I took the longest bath ever so my mom could stay in one spot and relax poolside.

Ahhhh.... and that folks, was my weekend!

1,000 KISSES,
Ella

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Meet Dolly

Our little family of three is really a family of six.  We have three humans in our family and three very important stuffed members.  You see,  Ella has three dolls that she loves.  Buttercup, the sweet yellow doll of hers is her doll of choice.  However, it is in her crib at the moment and there is not enough money in the world that would motivate me to go get it, as she finally fell asleep for her morning nap.  It is beyond cute to see her tottering around while holding one of her dollies!

Friday, March 5, 2010

5 Reasons I LOVE Today....

1.  I am wearing jeans and don't feel the least bit guilty.

2.  It is the only regular school day with kiddos the entire month.

3.  The sun was shining and there were blue skies on my way to work.

4.  Today is the last day I have to show my face with hideous overgrown eyebrows.  Yeah for a wax appointment tomorrow!

5.  Missy Moo slept through the night for the third consecutive night.

It is the little things, people!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Multi-Tasking

The hubs thinks I am always on the computer.
He may be right.
But I have papers to grade and enter.
I have e-mail to read.
I have a BLOG to create.
And besides, women are wired to do more than one thing at a time.
We have to or else nothing would get done.
It is called: MULTI-TASKING!
(But now I am going to power down. )

A Minor Miracle....

Ella  slept through the night.  
It is going to be a great day!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A Day In The LIfe of Ella




Every morning I wake and play my little heart out.  
I play, play, play. 
I climb and crawl. 
I giggle and explore. 

Then I eat.
And I eat fast. 
All so I can play, play, play some more. 

And all this is done before my mommy can finish her first cup of coffee!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Success... Dare I Say It?!


I am almost afraid to post this blog entry.  I am afraid I might jinx our progress.  If you have been following BLISS regularly, you know that I have been trying to gather the courage, willpower, strength or whatever you call it, to have Ella cry it out at night.  Well, Friday we began.

And I must say, I did not intend to start her CIO (crying it out) on Friday.  We did our usual routine.  She woke two times and I promptly went in to do our thing.  By the third time Friday night my body was not so understanding.  It refused to get out of bed and actually told my brain, "You have not had an uninterrupted night of sleep since God knows when.  Stay in bed.  Roll over, go back to sleep."

And so I did.  Ella cried. And cried.  And then went back to sleep.

On Saturday I figured we were already knee-deep in the process.  My body successfully convinced my brain to persevere.  Apparently my body is stronger (or just way more tired) than my brain, because when she did cry, I stayed in bed.  And guess what? She fell back asleep.

Sunday was a little easier.  I faintly remember her crying.  Dare I say that a full night's sleep is on the horizon?