Tuesday, August 31, 2010

On Becoming a Working Mom...

One of us can't stop crying...and it's not Jackson...

The thing I have been dreading since the day Jackson was born has arrived. Tomorrow I go back to work and Jackson goes to daycare...and I am a wreck. =(

The small part of me that is capable of compartmentalizing is excited to get back to work. I really do love my job. It's a good thing I do, because I'm not sure I would be willing to go back at all if I didn't. The biggest part of me though is simply devastated to leave him. Before he was born, I couldn't have imagined that I would feel this way...I never thought I was cut out to be a stay-at-home-mom. Funny how that all changed the moment I laid eyes on him.

He's been my constant companion for basically the last 11 months, so I know some degree of separation anxiety is normal. I know he will be fine...it's not that. I will just miss the little guy terribly, and no one can love him like I do. Tomorrow, some other lucky person will get to stroke his soft head, kiss his sweet cheeks, hear his precious giggle, snuggle him when he's sleepy, listen to his cute little baby noises while he naps, and enjoy his smiles and sweet baby smell.

A few things I will miss the most while I'm at work...

Big grins...

That determined look he gets when trying to do something new...

Watching him sleep...

Sweet cuddle time...

Say a prayer for us tomorrow...

Monday, August 30, 2010

Justin's 30th Birthday

On Saturday, my wonderful husband and Jackson's daddy turned 30! I personally can't believe he is 30! We met when he was 19 so I remember celebrating his 20th birthday with him. At that time, people that were 30 were old! Ha! What a great 10 years it's been though, and we wish him many many more happy years! We celebrated with a fun party with lots of family and friends including dinner at one of our favorite restaurants followed by dessert at our house. All of the grandparents were in town for the celebration, so Jackson had lots of willing arms to keep him occupied.

Birthday cake...it was delicious!

Me and Jackson with the birthday boy.

Jackson with his Granny and Papa John

Jackson with his Grammy and Pop

This is one of my favorite picture to date...just pure joy on each of their faces. Pop was telling Jackson about all of the fun things they were going to do when he gets bigger...ride the jet ski, go fishing, go tubing, etc.

On Sunday evening after all of our company had left, Jackson was off his normal schedule and feeling a bit out of sorts. To help him let off some steam, we did one of his favorite activities--naked "air time"! (In addition to putting him in a great mood, it's also supposed to prevent diaper rash.) *Warning* if you are offended by ridiculously cute naked babies, don't hit play!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Monkey See, Monkey Do

Jackson has learned to stick his tongue out!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Boatin' Baby

A couple of years ago, my parents bought a house on Lake Nacogdoches. They spend most of their weekends there, enjoying the peace and quiet, limited internet (not even dial-up!), and the sights and sounds of nature. I do believe though that they also purchased the lake house as an extra incentive for their kiddos (and by kiddos, I really mean the grandkids) to come visit more often. Their strategy works on us--it's one of my favorite places in the world because to me the lake house means fun, quality time with family, and just generally a break from our hectic lives. We make the trip to east Texas as often as we can during the summer months.

This summer was obviously a little different for us and this was our first trip to the lake house since Jackson was born in which we actually planned to enjoy the lake. We weren't able to go earlier in the summer because I was "grounded" due to my rapidly approaching due date and then when we went for July 4th Jackson was less than 3 weeks old and too small to take out on the water. Now that he's a little bigger and mommy and daddy are a bit braver, we decided to introduce him to one of our favorite summer pastimes. I am so excited to report that he LOVED it! Now, he didn't actually get in the water, but he seemed to love hanging out on the boat, the wind in his fuzzy hair, and soaking up some sun (indirect sun, of course, we kept him in the shade the whole time). Here's some pictures from the weekend...

Looking cute with Daddy in his hat

His life jacket is a little big. =)

"Hey Uncle Marc! I like the boat!"

He was enjoying himself so much that mom and dad were able to trade off baby duty with some of the other adults and enjoy floating in the lake and trying out my brother Matt's new jet ski.

Lounging with Uncle Marc and Cousin Annabelle on the boat

Water baby with Grammy

In addition to fun on the lake, we enjoy our weekends there just relaxing, playing games, and catching up with the fam. One favorite pastime is watching out the window for the deer that come to graze in the backyard. Here's Jackson watching for deer at the breakfast table with Pop--lucky Pop, this is the first picture we have been able to capture of Jackson smiling WITH someone else!

Swinging with Grammy and Annabelle

You do have to take a break to get cleaned up between all that fun. Here's Jackson lounging in his bath at the lake house.

We all look forward to our next trip to the lake house and the many wonderful family memories that we will make there in the future!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

2 Month Doctor's Visit

This afternoon we went to Jackson's 2 month well-baby check-up. He's doing great! First, here are his updated stats:
Weight: 12 lbs, 1 oz=60th Percentile
Length: 23.5 inches=70th%
Head Circumference: 16 inches=60th%

While waiting for the doctor, we hung out admiring that super cute baby in the mirror...he's become pretty fascinated with his reflection.

Handsome boy

We saw a different doctor this time since our regular doctor is on maternity leave, but we really liked him. He checked Jackson out from head to toe and declared him perfect--which we already knew of course. 2 months is the first big round of immunizations so that came next...

Oral vaccination--easy peasy although he did make some funny faces...

1st Shot--He didn't flinch--the pain hadn't hit him yet...

2nd Shot--None too pleased...

3rd Shot--Ballistic...

After that 3rd shot we heard a piercing, earth-shattering (to a mommy anyway) cry that we had (thank goodness) never heard before. Be glad you weren't there and that we did not capture the moment with a video. He did calm down quickly afterwards with a little help from mom. Since we can't leave you with such an unhappy image, here's another one from a happier time:

Monday, August 16, 2010

Happy 2 Months Jackson!

At 2 months, Jackson is just pure joy! (I think I might say this every month!) Over the last month, it’s as if he really just woke up. His little personality is starting to develop and we have really begun to differentiate his likes and dislikes. Things he likes: mornings, talking to mommy or daddy, baths, playing on his playmat, hanging out with mom in the Baby Bjorn, the blow dryer on his bum during diaper changes and after baths (I think we will need to devote a whole post to this one), staring at ceiling fans and window blinds, music of any kind, mealtimes with mom (he would camp out there all day if I let him), naps on daddy’s chest and bouncing on the exercise ball when he’s fussy. His dislikes: having to get his diaper changed first when he wakes up hungry, tummy time (will only tolerate for short periods of time), and taking a break from eating to burp.

We are so lucky because he is sleeping great at night! He goes to sleep easily between 11 and 12 and then sleeps til around 5 or 6. After he eats, he usually goes right back to sleep for another 3 hours or so. Daytime naps are another story—he fights sleep and when he does drift off, he only sleeps for about 30 minutes or less unless someone is holding him. We try to recreate his bedtime routine for naps, but without much luck. Any suggestions here?

Physically there have also been big changes in a month. We go back to the doctor for his 2 month check-up on Thursday so I will get back to you with the precise numbers but anecdotally, he has become quite the chunky monkey! Everything about him is pinchingly plump! He is quickly outgrowing his 0-3 month size clothes and I plan to get all of his 3-6 month size clothes washed and ready to go in the next few days. He is also regrowing some of the hair he lost early on and his little eyelashes are getting longer and thicker each day. He is holding his head up like a champ, has rolled over a few times, and is tracking objects well. He is quite the little squirmer and is making his way all over his mini crib during the night, waking up with his feet almost hanging out the bottom when I placed him at the top of the crib.

He is a very adaptable little guy—we have continued to do everything we did before him, but with just a little more planning. We enjoy daily outings and errands, eating out, game night with friends, church on Sundays and he even travels well for longer weekend trips. I love taking him out because strangers approach to tell us how beautiful he is. We agree.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

He slept through the night!

Even better, he slept through the night in his own bed! We put him down in his little mini crib in our room around midnight and he finally woke up just before 7! He semi-woke up at his normal increments and whined a little (never actually cried) but each time he just went back to sleep! Let's hope it wasn't just a fluke!

He can hardly believe it either!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Morning Boy

Justin and I are NOT morning people. We can think of no better way to spend a Saturday than a lazy day in bed until noon. Our son, apparently, adores the morning. Granted, he did let us sleep until the leisurely hour of 9:00 am and then he was all smiles.

We had another great weekend with family. This time we made the trip to Houston to visit my sister (Jackson's Aunt Melly) and her family. We were celebrating my niece, Scarlette's, 16th Birthday. Whoa! How the heck is she already 16?? So Jackson got to go to his first pool party, and I dare say that he loved it! I've already looked up all the info on getting him in a water babies swimming class next Spring.

Isn't he cute in his hat? (hat courtesy of Grammy and our Friday night shopping trip).

Jackson with Aunt Melly and the birthday girl.

Experiencing the water features at the pool with Aunt Melly.

He was so content to just hang out poolside, splashing his little toes in the water.

Cooling off in the shade with Mommy.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

1st Trip to Dallas

We took our first trip to Dallas last weekend, which I will recap below, but first, a little video to appease all of the grandparents, etc.

Jackson is so much more alert and engaged with what's going on around him these days. He's becoming so fun but naps more difficult--he's so afraid he's going to miss something that he fights sleep.

As said above, we took our first trip to Dallas last weekend. Most of Justin's mom's family is in the Dallas area and there were some family members who had not gotten to meet Jackson yet. We got to spend some quality time on Saturday with Jackson's Nana and G-Paw and Great Grandma Ann. Jackson slept for, I think, about 3 hours in Grandma Ann's arms. I say "I think" because I thought he would sleep for about 15 minutes and then want to eat so I went to grab a quick nap and woke up hours later! I guess we were both more tired than we thought!

On Sunday, we drove over to Arlington for the big family gathering. Here we spent time with Aunt Janet (Jackson's great great aunt), GG (Jackson's great great grandmother), Co-Grandma Judy, Uncle Cody and lots of cousins. While we had everyone in one place, we took advantage of the opportunity to snap a 5 Generations Picture--thanks to cousin Jennifer for taking these priceless pics!

5 Generations: Jackson's Great Great Grandmother Elizabeth "GG" King, Great Grandmother "Grandma Ann" Cherry, Grandmother Cynthia "Nana" Jones, Dad Justin, and Baby Jackson at 7 weeks.

Isn't this a beautiful picture?

GG is 97 and Jackson is 7 weeks! Priceless!

After visiting with all of his family, the little monkey was tuckered out and had a little nap on his new precious monkey quilt that his Aunt Janet and Grandma Ann made him, accompanied by a new stuffed animal friend from Grandma Ann (a darling monkey book from Nana rounded out this perfect gift for our little monkey).

Have a Happy Thursday!