Friday, August 26, 2011


Having a baby? Then, you're about to embark on a stinky journey into the world of baby poop! Chances are, you have no idea that your world is about to revolve around what comes out of your new baby's cute little bottom.

If you're already a mom (or dad), you've been in poop up to your ears, but while what's below may not be new to you fellow veterans, I can almost guarantee a laugh…a "gee, that sounds familiar"…or at the very least… a knowing smirk.

So, I stood there for a second trying to figure out what to do about this great poop disaster while I stripped my t-shirt and shorts off, wiped the runny baby poop off my hands and his legs with a tank top and burp rag (aka “goy-goy” in my house). Btw, you really know you’re a mom when you use your clothing to wipe up baby poop! I heaped the clothes into a pile out of his reach and ran through the house, in my panties, for more supplies…clean supplies.

It all started with a stench. I checked the side of the dipey and what to my wondering eyes did I see? Poop! For not having seen poop in two days, I was rather elated knowing Reef’s discomfort last night would be a thing of the past (temporarily anyway). So…off with the dipey and on to cleaning my dahling’s sweet baby bottom. Now I don’t enjoy bathroom humor as much as many of you, and so I’m going to save the details of this particular bowel movement except to say that it was…well, not solid. Therefore, it was everywhere!

I gathered his feet and held them high and pushed back towards Reef’s chest…when OMG! he’s not finished excreting! In moments like this, the body enters a sort of flight-or-fight response. Time slows down. Adrenalin pulses. The mind starts ticking methodically…focus on the basics, on survival…

Don’t know if there is such thing, but this was projectile poop. I look over and see that I have only 2 wipes remaining. My options don’t look promising, but I’m running out of time. Any second one of those erratic bouncing hands is going to reach down and grab that stuff. Must act now! Fine! I can wash everything in bleach and hot water later, right? So, I used the nearest blanket, goy-goy, and even my own shirt to catch what mimicked that of a playdoh machine.

Then I started to undress him. This is when I discovered that he had baby poop smeared half-way up his back too. Have you ever wished there was someone else home and you could just drop the kid on their lap and lock yourself in your bedroom for twenty minutes? But I know this isn’t Inception. It isn’t my dream or anybody else’s and in a horrible twist of fate, I’m the only person here to deal with this.

A short while later, I realize that I’m writing a blog post about baby poop and its role in my life, even though I swore I was way too deep and profound and intellectual for that kind of…um…crap. Lol!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


I am a “recovering” perfectionist, but only in recent years.  I like things to be just so and will work tirelessly to ensure everything I do is perfect.  (Ask me how many times I revised this post!) 

Motherhood is curing me of perfectionism because really, life with children, specifically an infant, cannot be lived flawlessly!  Since Keegan’s and Bailey’s toddler-hood, I am no longer on time for anything.  I suspect this will only worsen since Reef's arrival.  We don’t eat a portion of every food group at every meal.  My clothes often have some wrinkles.  I may or may not leave the house with mascara.  My house is in a perpetual state of disaster…unless you are coming over, in which case it all gets meticulously cleaned from floor to ceiling.  ...But even that obsession is loosening.  This is to ensure that at least there is an appearance of perfection, which appeals to the “recovering” side of my personality.

Strangely, I work hardest at appearing picture perfect when I’m getting together with other moms.  When prepping for playdates or school functions, I make sure my kids are dressed in clean clothes —coordinating outfits, if I can manage (which is oh, pretty much never!).  Their hair is neatly combed and socks match.  I even spend a few moments on my own appearance.  How silly is this and who do I think I am kidding? 

Why do I feel a need to appear like my life is a well-oiled machine and oh-so-perfect?  It most certainly is not!  Anyone with children knows it is not that smooth…at least not all the time.  And yet, I try to keep up the facade, hoping nobody catches on.  Ha ha -- bet you were fooled!

The irony of being a “recovering” perfectionist is that I want to be recovered completely and, well, perfectly.  I try to maintain the appearance of being laid back and carefree even as things are as well put together as I can manage.  Thus brings the question of whether I am truly “recovering” if I want to do it so impeccably.  Guess not.

Monday, August 22, 2011


Saturday, August 20, 2011


dear bebe reef,

I’ve whispered in your ears a thousand times that God picked you out especially for your father and I. I’ve traced the words I love you in your tiny palms over and over again. The two of us have sat many afternoons just studying each others faces. I’ve looked at you so long, I feel as if I should know the number of lashes on your lids and the number of twinkles that fills your eyes.

I’ve come to realize that all I can do is continue searching the rest of my days for new ways to tell you the same things -- that you’ve changed everything. that you are one of my most tangible joys. that being your mother is beyond a gift. beyond a blessing. it is the thing that my life was meant for.

but you’ve heard this all before. and you’ll hear it again. today and tomorrow and the day after that one too.


Thursday, August 18, 2011


Even though they are teeny tiny, babies can pass gas and belch as loudly as a full grown man. For some reason I thought that maybe the noise one makes when passing gas would be relative to size. I was grossly misinformed.
You know how when you're hugely pregnant and the baby is taking up so much room that all of your organs are squished up in your chest cavity? Well after the baby is born your organs starting moving back down to the regular positioning - AND YOU CAN FEEL THEM shifting back down. So weird!
At your first post-baby checkup, you and your OB will probably have wildly varying definitions of the phrase "Everything is back to normal".
In the beginning, when your boobs are trying to figure out what the hell is going on, they sometimes spray milk out like someone stuck a pin in a water balloon. I think it's their way of protesting their new predicament.
Becoming a mother is like learning to live life with only one arm. I eat with one arm, type with one arm, go about most of my daily life with one arm. My other arm belongs completely to Reef.
So there you go. a little shared knowledge. There was never a chapter on any of these subjects in my baby books so I wanted to pass it on.

Monday, August 15, 2011


Dear baby,

I’ve learned that sometimes when I kiss the palms of your small hands, you will curl your fingers around my lips. I’ve learned you love having your head rubbed when you nurse.  I’ve learned to decipher so many of your noises… your hungry cry, your peaceful coo, your frustrated grunt.

When we lay you down between us, we border you on both sides like tall, fortress walls and within that space we marvel at the kingdom that is our little family. We can’t believe we exist, that you exist, that love this large and tangible exists in such a small curl of bodies on a little bed in a little house, just a spec in The Woodlands.

Sunday, August 14, 2011


Stationery card
View the entire collection of cards.

Saturday, August 13, 2011


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"Brotherly love"

Friday, August 12, 2011


I’ve learned that it’s not the amount of time you’ve known someone that makes their presence in your life impactful. It’s the depths you go with them. It’s the number of time you look over when something really big is happening in your life and they’re right there.

And that’s my Gina. Through the best and the worst.

Thursday, August 11, 2011


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"It's the great pacifier, Charlie Brown"

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


I'm sure what I deem a completely magical baby item is another person's most useless piece of crap ever.  But here are my two cents of general-ish comforting advice….

Rob your hospital room blind. And by "rob" I mean help yourself to everything that is not nailed down, because it is legitimately yours to take anyway. A lot of this stuff will be for the baby, but even more of it is for you. Feminine pads, mesh underwear (oh!  The best postpartum invention ever), nipple cream samples and that gloriously big plastic grown-up sippy cup from your nightstand. Take it ALL. If you don't need it or love it, fine. It was free anyway. (Well, kind of. Thanks, insurance!)

You CAN leave the house. No matter how well prepared for baby you think you are, you'll likely make at least one or two trips to a store in those first few days. So if you realize that your nursing bras don't fit or you don't like your nursing pillow or craving some specific food or it's time to downgrade from the industrial-sized maxipads, you CAN leave the house. (And don't let anyone give you crap about taking your baby out of the house to go to Target, OMG! or wherever.) Personally, you CAN piggy-back shopping trips or errands onto the doctor visits.

Now, having gone through the postpartum…thing…three times now, there are a few things I have used and depended on and have stocked up on again. Please note that your mileage will very likely vary:

Nipple stuff. I always use basic ol' lanolin.

Sleep bras and nursing tanks. avoid underwire. At first! You still want to keep your fun bags supported and contained, and you DEFINITELY want easy, easy access.  During my first pregnancy, I was told to not bother with any nursing bras at all until afterwards — just go with some sports bras until you know what size you'll need!  Pfft.  What a crock! 

Pillows. So many pillows. Yes, yes, a nursing pillow is great, though you'll never reach a consensus on which one is the best, and you might never actually make up your own mind either. You need something to support your back and arms while you master nursing sitting up in bed or on the couch. Something to hold against your c-section incision if you cough or sneeze or laugh (ouch!). Pillows, man!  Pillows.

Water. I already mentioned the Hospital Cup, right?  The big grown-up sippy cup thing?  Staying hydrated is SUPER IMPORTANT while your milk supply amps up, and it's hard to do if you're dependent on someone else to keep refilling your average-sized water glass.  Get something big and convenient and keep it by your side at all times.

Netflix and snax.  I know this is beyond the practical stuff, but I suggest amping up on funny movies and tv shows.  And snacks.  Lots and lots of good, easy-to-eat-with-one-hand snacks.  And remember that it's okay to cry or be stunningly disgustingly happy, or both. Your hormones will be normalizing, and you might be at either end of the spectrum at any given time.  Just ask Pete. :0)

Oh, holy cannoli!  I almost forgot.  Dry shampoo.  Hey, don't judge me!  I'm simply a tired, rushed woman.  But it's a stupid—obvious thing I've learned.  If you haven't taken the plunge, now's the time. 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


Monday, August 8, 2011


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"2 weeks old"

Sunday, August 7, 2011


Thursday, August 4, 2011


when he isn't depositing buckets of breastmilk on my shoulder or tasting a fistful of my hair, reef is likely engaged in some other sort of messy oral exploration.

like trying to stuff his entire hand in his mouth.  or munching a corner of a receiving blanket that might accidentally make contact with his face.

but mostly he is all over me -- sucking on my cheek, licking my neck, or trying to eat my nose when i lean in for some sugar.

this is full-contact lovin'.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011


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"The view from above my pregnant belly"

Monday, August 1, 2011


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