Friday, January 28, 2011

No Clever Title...Just HI

Look at my delicious boy!  3 weeks old!

Hi from the Griffith household!  Sadly it's a bit of a sick house here.  I went to the doctor yesterday to make sure I didn't have the flu (For shame! None of us had flu shots this year will be different).  Thank God I don't have the flu but I do have an awful cold/sinus infection.  I'm doing my best not to give it to anyone but Rylie is coughing/sneezing and Rowan has actually been sneezing a little too.  Boo!  Hopefully we can keep Jason healthy.

This week has been very long. I'm still struggling to find balance and figuring out the logistics of juggling two kids. Jason's boss was wonderful enough to be flexible about when Jason comes into work on Wed/Fri, this means that Jason can now drop Rylie off at preschool twice a week for me. Yay!  Oddly, as happy as this made me, I miss our little time together driving to school, but I'm so glad that Jason and Rylie can use this as Daddy/Rylie time and that I don't have to get out with both kids that early.
More Daddy/Rylie time

Now my issue is how do I get Rylie out of school? She walks but we go across the street to park and so I just carry carrying her and Rowan might present a problem.  Montene was sweet enough to sit with Rowan on Wednesday so that I could run in and get Rylie so I'm hoping we can meet up and do that for awhile.  Another issue I'm trying to figure out is how to sit still and feed Rowan while I hear Rylie doing things like pulling trash out of the trash can, chasing the dog around the house giggling (while he's terrified) or standing on top of her little table and chairs.  LOL. I know she waits until I'm feeding the baby to do these things.

One thing I've learned through this struggle to find balance is that it's ok to ask for help.  Just ask Jason, he'll tell you that I don't ask for help.  I never have (this is NOT a good thing).  I hate asking someone to watch my kids, or pick something up for me, or help me in any way.  I'll accept help...but ASKING, that's another thing.  With two babies I've been forced to ask for help and the results are awesome.  Jason has been a super-star Dad helping me 1/2 the night w/ Rowan and then going to work the next morning.  Amy and my parents have helped me SO much by watching Rylie for me.  I don't know what I'd do without those three...they amaze me.  My Mom is ALWAYS there for me and she has a full time (stressful job). Of course my sweet mother-in-law Zande was amazing when she was here.  I don't even have to ask her to help me, she just knows and she just does.  I'm so blessed to have her in my life.  Even my little (God)sister Julianne has helped out.  I'm learning, ask for help, the worst you'll hear is no.  If people can't help, they'll tell you and it's not a big deal.  It's taken me almost 29 years to learn this lesson folks  =)  Better late than never.
Playing with Papa

I have to admit.  I cannot wait to get back to spending more time with my husband (we are like ships passing in the night).  He takes his shift, I take mine and we spend 30 minutes in the morning having coffee together.  We do make a point to spend time together in the evening, but we're exhausted folks...but I know this too shall pass.  I also cannot wait to start working out again, I just have 3 1/2 weeks left.  I know it'll be SO hard to find time to workout, but it makes me feel good about myself and dangit...I'll make time for it.  Plus I miss time for my crafts and cooking.  I need a creative outlet and getting crafty and cooking up new (and old) recipes is how I get creative.  I keep telling myself that as soon as I get out of newborn survival mode then I'll have time.  Regardless of all that's going on and how fast life seems to be flying by, I have THE best life.  I have 2 really good kids.  Rylie is unreal smart and SO much fun and Rowan is really a good baby ya'll.  He is.  He's a newborn and he requires us in the middle of the night (which is the worst part), but otherwise, he's perfect.  Sweet, low-key, and calm.  I just adore him.  Being the Mama of two is twice as nice and I'm loving it!
Little Mama testing the bottle out on her hand like Mama does.

Have a great weekend ya'll!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A New Adventure!

Hi! I keep meaning to update my blog and I never find just the right moment.  This is the 3rd day that I've been working on this blog, LOL. If this is any indication of how busy my life will be...yowza!  I'll figure out a good schedule in the next few weeks.  For now we're sort of flying by the seat of our pants.  I'm trying to keep some of Rylie's routines completely the same but I know that we'll need to change a few things to add Rowan into the mix at some point.  Lately I'm craving the need to have more deeply set routines (yes I know I have a newborn, but they need schedule too).

This weekend we celebrated Rylie's 2nd birthday with a small group of family and friends.  In our little house, a small group was a house FULL but Rylie had a great time and I was amazed how quickly Jason, my Mom and I could pull together a great little party on such a short notice.

Strawberry Shortcake Birthday time!!

Rylie and Mimi ready to party!

I thought this was so cute!  Caden looks so serious with his party hat on!

We had such a fun day and kept the whole affair low key.  Pizza, icecream, cookie cake and some of our sweet friends and family...just perfect.  Rylie got some great presents, mostly school clothes (which she always needs) and books!  She is still going over and over her new books, this kid can recognize more words that most 1st graders.  What can I say, she loves to read!

The rest of this week has been great as well.  Zande, my mother-in-law is here and besides her helping me with Rowan (which is amazing beyond words...I've gotten real sleep!), the whole family just loves her being here. On Rylie's actual birthday (Sunday) she took Rylie outside and Rylie took off down the street so Zande grabbed her jacket hood and off they went!  Look how much fun they had!

Rowan is a complete hunger monster lately.  I was worried the first few days he was home because I'd have to practically beg him to eat and he'd sleep nearly ALL the time.  Well that's not the case anymore.  This boy can put some food away and he's definitely giving us much more time to see his bright eyes  =)  Often in the evening/morning of course.

Rowan (on Rylie's boppy pillow) watching his mobile!

See, I DO have eyes!

Rylie is getting more and more interested in him and I think she understands now, he's not going anywhere.  She definitely likes him.  She'll now kiss him, try and help with his bottle and point out each body part carefully.  My favorite is when she rubs his little fuzzy head. 
Rylie's new favorite activity in the whole wide world.  Coloring!!

Sweet kisses from his crazy-haired sister.

 I'd be lying if I didn't admit that I'm a little apprehensive about next week.  Next week it's all on me.  Jason is back at work, Zande will be back in Virginia and I'll be on full time duty for 2 kids.  I know that I'll be fine, but I do know that we'll be adjusting for awhile.  I think the best way to look at it is that we're off on a new adventure!  Here we go!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

My New Life: Mama of Two

After one week home with our little man I can definitely say that things are changing and we're adjusting.  I don't have a true idea of how this new life as a Mama of two is like until all my help is gone, but I'm getting the hang of it.  Jason and I have been taking shifts with Rowan at night and I can honestly say, after a full week home he has his days and nights mixed up.  I'll admit, I thought Jason just wasn't feeding him enough at night and making him burp, but I was wrong, you could set off a bomb next to him during the day and he's out and at night he's Mr. Personality, and hungry.  Great.  How could you be mad at a face like this though?

His sleepy daytime nature worked in our favor yesterday when we had his newborn pictures taken by Holly Tye . We put him in every kind of position possible for a full two hours and he went along with anything.  I can't wait to see the pictures she captured because they're always amazing.  Rylie would NOT cooperate with her pictures when we did them 2 years ago.  The only one Holly was able to capture w/ her eyes closed was when Rylie blinked in a picture. LOL.  They all turned out amazing but Rylie is bright eyed in each shot  =)

Look how chubby and bright eyed Rylie was for her newborn pics!

I'm learning how different two siblings can be.  I hear this all the time but my two, so far, are night and day.  The only physical feature they seem to share are long limbs and their tiny cleft in their chins (like their Dad, Aunt, and Grandpa all have).  Rylie was a little clone of me, Rowan seems to be a clone of Jason.  Rylie was a piggy of an eater, Rowan has to be tickled, talked to and undressed to get a full bottle in.  Rylie required complete silence to get a full nap in (still does) and Rowan could have a marching band parade through and still sleep through it.  The last one is a doozy though.  Rylie was generally awake during the day and asleep at night, and Rowan has this quite backwards.  I've been doing some research this morning at how to change this, so we'll see if I can start changing it up before my sweet mother-in-law goes home and I have to do most of the nights (and all of the weekdays) all on my own.  

I'm also learning how many dear people in my life I have to be grateful for.  My husband who has been the most amazing help.  He tried with Rylie but was a bit clueless, we both were.  I, admittedly, wanted to take over everything for Rylie to make sure it was going like I wanted it to.  With Rowan I've let go of some of the control and it's so much easier, plus if I ask for help, Jason will always help me.  Its amazing, he is amazing.  My parents are so much help and support I can't even blog about them without getting teary eyed.  I'm 100% sure that they are the most supportive parents on the planet.  If I can grow up to be 1/2 the parents they are I'll be doing good. My sister and brother in law are always there for support too and my sister is always there to share middle of the night tweets with me, which is oddly comforting.  My little sis Julianne comes to play with Rylie and totally helps take stress off of me.  My MIL Zande is now here and she will make this week so much easier I'm sure.  Plus my small but invaluable group of friends that support me with visits, texts, blog comments, Facebook wall posts and tweets...I wouldn't trade my small group of amazing friends for the world.  Big life events have a way of making you take notice of all the good things in life.
Another "good thing in life"? Rowan's best friend and cousin, Elliot. 
 These two are destined to be besties just like their Mama's are!

Well, today we have a party for Rylie!  She turns two tomorrow and I hope to get a chance to blog about her party.  Because we knew Rowan should be here (on Monday actually), we didn't plan a huge deal.  Word of mouth and evites is all I did this year.  A few friends and family, nothing special but it's all about Rylie.  This little girl is the most amazing thing that happened to me.  She makes me happy every single day.  Even on the days when she frustrates me the most, the happy times FAR outweigh the bad.  She still doesn't say much, but this child is the smartest kid and amazes me every day at how many words she can read and recognize.  She is a tiny masterpiece of God's design and I'm so lucky that I get to call her MY daughter.

Rylie excited for her school birthday celebration yesterday.  
Isn't she a doll?

Ok, I'm off to start getting things ready for Rylie's party.  Hopefully my friends and family will come to see us and not the house  =)  Have a great Saturday!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Meet Rowan!

Morning! It's 6am and I *think* and I'll have time to get this blog post going.  We'll see if either one of the kids wakes up before then. Fingers crossed!  Rowan is finally here!  His due date is just under a week away but he was not waiting one bit longer.  Here's his birth story in as much of a nutshell as possible.

Wednesday morning I had a doctor's appointment and when the doctor checked me he said "that's weird" (not words you really want to hear at that point).  He then told me that my cervix was really long (has to be short to have baby, as in, they barely feel any) but that I was dilated to 4cm.  Wow! That's 40% of the way there!  With this information he told me that if I didn't have the baby before next Wednesday, he'd see me then and induce me on Thursday.  So that was the plan in my head.  Induction on Thursday.  Well needless to say, I went about my day having lunch with a dear friend, picking Rylie up from school, normal household chores.  I was having contractions all day though.  Despite my efforts, I was too busy to really sit down and time them properly...hey, I'm a busy woman!  By the time we put Rylie to bed and sat down to watch a Star Trek I decided to time them and then I started getting nervous.  They were regular and they were not backing off, but didn't seem to be getting worse.  Finally after going back and forth with Amy and Jason about what I should do I called the on-call doctor and she told me to come in to check them out.  Thankfully my Dad came down here to stay with Rylie and Jason and I were on our way.

 The triage nurse hooked me all up and said I was indeed contracting every 1-2 minutes (not the 3-5 minutes I'd and to calm down because my heart rate was faster that Rowan's.  She also checked and said I was at 5cm now.  At this point they admitted me, started an IV, got some labs from me and I went ahead and ordered my epidural.  The contractions were picking up and I didn't want to wait until I was in crazy bad pain before I got it (last time I got it at 2cm). It took awhile (as usual) and then I got my epidural.  Getting it this time was much different than last time. It took twice as long and honestly now my back is still a little sore, but hey, it worked!  The nurse started up the pitocin to kick my contractions into high gear and instructed us to try and sleep. Hahahahaha.  Like I could sleep!  My Mom and Amy (and Julianne) kept me company some, but Jason slept and I ate ice chips and tried to rest.

At around 5:30 the nurse checked me, I was about the same, then she sat me up to get my vitals better and my water broke.  From then until Rowan was born it was a little crazy. When the doctor finally came in she said she didn't think I'd have to push long, so I tried a few pushes and then she made me wait because Rowan's heart rate kept dropping during each contraction/push.  She told me that she'd have pediatrics come down just to watch and assist if needed because there was cord around his neck.  Suddenly there was about 12 people in the room all urging me to push NOW.  In about 30 minutes or less of pushing Rowan was here.  Jason had no time to cut the cord or gaze at the baby.  The doctor quickly cut the cord from around his neck and handed him to the nurses.  He was completely white and limp.  They gave him oxygen and continued to try and stimulate him to wake up and we got a few whimpers. After a few minutes he had great color and needed no more help.  

Rowan Carey Griffith
7 lbs. 1oz. 20 inches

It was a bit of a whirlwind, just like when I had Rylie!  Rylie went from no interest in him to now semi-interest.   She now imitates everything I do with him with her baby doll. I don't know what it is but I seem to love her exponentially more now that Rowan is here.  Not that I don't adore him, I just treasure her every little expression, laugh and hug.  She is such a ray of sunshine.

Oh how I missed this girl.

So far my recovery seems to be about the same as it was with Rylie's.  My back is a little more sore from the epidural but otherwise everything seems the same.  Rowan looks (to most people we know) just like Jason. A complete mini Jason with the same features and expressions.  Sometimes I look at Rowan and think "you look just like your Daddy" and I look at Jason and think "you look just like my baby".  LOL.  We've had a few hard nights of adjustment, not because Rowan is a tough baby but because we forget how no sleep feels...or little sleep.  We've divided the night into two shifts the past 2 nights (because the first night we both got only 3 hours of sleep).  I'm quite proud of Jason for bravely taking the first shift alone.  He'll wake me up around 4/5am and I lurch out of bed feeling awful I slept so long.  LOL.  This kid definitely sleeps and eats better during the day, so clearly we need to switch up his body clock.

Maybe being a big sister isn't all that bad!

Thanks for all your prayers and comments.  I'm praying that over the next few weeks our family will adjust to the changes.  I knew there would be major changes but now I'm feeling them and I'm just praying that they don't seem overwhelming.  I love my little family SO much so I'm just praying that this transition goes smoothly.  Or as smooth as possible.  I cannot believe how blessed I am to be the Mom of two beautiful children!  Today we go for Rowan's first check up.  Friday he gets newborn pictures taken AND my wonderful mother-in-law arrives and Saturday we're having a small birthday party for Rylie because she'll be 2 on Sunday!  Don't get me started on that or I really will cry!  I hope everyone is having a great week and staying warm.  Please keep us in your prayers  =)

Monday, January 3, 2011

Countdown to Rowan

Hi!  I'm 38 weeks today and I can't believe it.  On some days it seems like this pregnancy has flown by and on other it seems like it will never end.  I am equal parts SO ready to not be pregnant anymore and holding my baby and also anxious about lack of sleep, how Rylie will react and just being able to handle it all.  Most of the time I'm just ready to not be pregnant anymore though  =)  I'm sure it's perfectly normal to also feel a bit guilty when I look at Rylie and think how she has NO idea how much her little life is about to change.  Sure, she'll love having a brother someday, but she won't be my one and only concern anymore.  I'll have to share my attention and affection with someone else and that will be a huge change for her.  Thankfully she's not generally super clingy and she is quite wonderful at entertaining herself for long periods of time.  I'm trying to take these last 2 weeks (or less) and soak up every little Mommy/Rylie moment I can because time flies at light speed now, I cannot imagine how fast it will fly by with 2 kids.  I've loved having her as my one and only sidekick day by day for almost 2 years, now the two of us get to take a new adventure together...Rowan!  I cannot believe how blessed I am to be a stay-at-home Mama and not miss one single moment with them because boy is it ever going by FAST.  

Thank you Rylie for teaching me SO much over the past 23 1/2 months.  You've taught me what it is to be selfless and to love someone more than I ever imagined possible.  You've taught me patience and how to act completely silly and ridiculous just to get one smile from you.  Every single day of my life is happy because YOU are  in it.  I love you my little sunshine!

And now for an update on Rowan's room.  It's really coming along.  I love it because it's SO different from Rylie's ultra girly room.  

Of course we went with the Space Ship theme!  This meant that I added (or let Jason add) touches of Star Wars and Star Trek (only original Star Trek folks).  
Since Rowan's room is the biggest room we put the futon in there in case we need to sleep on it or our guests can.  I like it and so does Rylie (and the animals), they think it's their couch.  I love the ABC and number picture prints we got from Etsy and the "Rocket Man" painting from a local craft show. Oh and that's the consignment store bookshelf I mod-podged a few months ago!

I didn't want to buy another changing table so we just got a white dresser and I had Jason spray paint the knobs w/ a $1 can of spray paint. Gotta love spray paint!  The rocker is Rylie's old (pink) rocker that Jason dyed to match Rowan's room!

I love his cozy rocketship bed!!  Now we just need a baby to put in there!

SO, what do you think of Rowan's room?  I hope you enjoyed his room tour and please pray for our little family and the upcoming changes that await us  =)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy 2011

We had such a nice and relaxing NYE around here.  We went up to my Mom's and had dinner with my parents, Amy, Matt and Elliot and Mamaw.  Amy made delicious Ranch Oyster Crackers (an old NYE favorite in our family), Amy and I made Pasta E Fagioli and I made THIS dessert, Cake Batter Blondies. AMAZING.  So easy you must try them, and festive too! Thank God we have leftovers.  We had a great time hanging out and came home by 8:30.  Jason and I watched some Star Trek and stayed up just late enough to get a Happy New Year's smooch before rolling over and going to sleep  =)  I borrowed this little New Year's survey from Karen (who I think borrowed it from someone else). Much easier than summarizing my year myself.  I hope everyone has had a great start to 2011!!
1. What did you do in 2010 that you’d never done before?
I became an Aunt. I became pregnant with a baby boy! I took my girl to her first day of preschool. 
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't really make any but I do like to make some goals.  I'm still coming up with my goals but here are a few I have in mind so far:
  • Read more books (I'm already doing great on this w/ the help of my Kindle).
  • Invest more time in my friendships (with new, old and family friends).
  • Workout 4-5 days a week (after the baby of course)
  • Refocus my food efforts on healthful foods (less processed, more nutrient rich), just the way I was eating before I got pregnant and decided to eat a little more junk food.
  • Spend more time focused solely on Rylie, Jason (and eventually Rowan). Distraction free. TV off, smartphone down.
  • Read in my Chronological Bible each day (a cool Christmas gift).

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
My twin sister gave birth to my nephew Elliot! He's perfect! Also my cousin Marybeth gave birth to her son, Colt, on the very same day that Amy had Elliot.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
No. I did have a dear friend lose a baby though and I watched her deal with it with such grace.  She amazes me with her positivity, love her.
5. What countries did you visit?
Just the good ole' USA.
6. What would you like to have in 2011 that you lacked in 2010?
A son  =) 
7. What dates from 2010 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Jan. 16th, Rylie's first birthday and Nov. 19th, Elliot's birthday!!
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? 
Well in the first 4 months of 2010 I lost 20 lbs. Yay!  I was very proud of myself, and then I got pregnant.  In 2011 my goal is to lose all the baby weight plus about 10 more lbs. I know I can do it!  
9. What was your biggest failure?
I don't feel like I really "failed" at anything this year really. I wish I would have read more books and watched less Bravo  =)
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Other than being insanely pregnant? No.  This kid seems WAY harder on my body than Rylie was. He definitely wants to make sure he's the baby of the family =)
11. What was the best thing you bought?
I didn't do much buying this year besides groceries, baby stuff and gifts for other I'm not sure.
12. Where did most of your money go?
Rylie and medical bills (again, Rylie).
13. What did you get really excited about?
Becoming an Aunt, becoming pregnant with a baby boy and yes...discovery Glee!
14. What song will always remind you of 2010?
Anything Glee related.
15. Compared to this time last year, are you:
– happier or sadder? Happier, but I'm just a happy person generally.
– thinner or fatter? Fatter...I'm almost 38 wks pregnant.
– richer or poorer? Ask the husband. He's the money.
16. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Dates with the husband.
17. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Computer and dvr.
18. How did you spend Christmas?
With my family here in GA.
19. What was your favorite TV program?
Glee Glee and Glee
20. What were your favorite books of the year?
The Big Stone Gap series by Adriana Trigiani.  I sped through the first book, got the 2nd book on my Kindle for Christmas (read it in 4 days) and am now working on the 3rd book. Check them out.
21. What was your favorite music from this year?
Glee. I sound like a broken record but it's the truth ya'll.
22. What were your favorite films of the year?
I so haven't had time to watch movies this year. Or at least anything new.
23. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
We went to Thai House with the family and had cookie cake. It was perfect. I turned 29. SO trying to hold onto my 20's.
24. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
More time alone with Jason.
25. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2010?
Hah. I was actually getting better (and into) this whole fashion thing before I got pregnant.  Now I'm just determined to make my old maternity clothes work.  2011 will definitely be more fashionable.
26. What kept you sane?
Family, friends and Oliver.
27. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2010.
"Keeping it light" on Facebook, especially with family members. And just keeping my mouth shut period on FB, good and bad.