Sunday, May 30, 2010

Baby Smorgasbord

In which Alexandria looks cute while sleeping...

Is beautiful during her first time in her stroller at a picnic at the forest preserve. (Gotta love the RED aura, thanks to our cool Chicco fuego-colored stroller.)

Is a fish during her first real bath!!! Alexandria's cord stump came off on day 6, but she didn't get her first real bath until last night. She LOVED it. I'm not even kidding. She was as happy as a clam. Maybe it reminded her of her past nine months of life.

And was a little star in her first Crino family photo - all eleven of us together at last!!! There's definitely an overabundance of girls here... O well. Our men are just that brave. :)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Passing the potato...

In which Alexandria does not look amused... but we like her anyway.

The Grandmas and Auntie Abby checking out Lexy's sweet soccer jersey. World Cup here we come!!!

Proud Crino grandparents...who look MUCH too young to be grand-parents, but such is life when you have babies in your early 20's!!! ;)

Needless to say, having my family here right now has made life very sweet. It's times like these when I selfishly wish that God would call them back from Mexico and put them next door to me. But then again, God doesn't always do things for our own convenience, but rather for His Kingdom. It's not easy, though, to be a family that is so close, and yet spread so incredibly far apart.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

This baby o' mine

While I have been living in my bed, I failed to realize that people were getting a little antsy that I hadn't yet put any pictures of my cute little baby (yes, I am biased) on my blog yet. One reason is the obvious - I have been in bed. The other reason is only slightly obvious - I have been in my PJs and not photo presentable in a while. And the other reason is the very obvious - my photographer and videographer husband doesn't always share his pictures so readily with me. Most of the reason being that I have been in bed for the past seven days. :P But thank goodness for my mother-in-law, who stayed with us for the first 5 days of my recuperation and just emailed these pictures to me this morning! Enjoy!

Alexandria taking a milk-induced coma like snooze...

Chillin' with Daddy.

Meeting Auntie Alli!!! (who flew in from the D.R. a week early to surprise the family!)
Note: I fit into my jeans!!!! YES! Granted, they are the stretchy ones, but still!

This picture is hilarious. She looks totally like Eric here.

Giving each other the eyeballs....

Snuggle time with mama.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

So tired...

Alexandria is already 6 days old. So sweet and beautiful.
I am in the slow process of recovering, and have spent most of every day in bed - gazing at my daughter, feeding her, and trying to sleep. My labor was about 15 hours, incredibly intense, and let me tell you: Stitches are NO fun. Necessary, yes. But thus equals the slow recovery, where every step I take is labored and slooooooooow. My daughter is worth every second of my discomfort, though, and I am SO HAPPY that she is finally here in person! Just being able to gaze into her eyes, feel her fingers grasp onto mine, and hold her close to me while she drinks my milk is such a miracle!
I can't believe that this perfect tiny angel was formed inside my body. God is just wonderful.

And I am so so SO thankful for my midwives, doula, and nurses (who turned out to be some of my good college friends!!!) who took such good care of me in the hospital. For Luc, for driving us to the hospital and for being on-call for all these months. And for Eric. Who is the love of my life and the most wonderful man I know. (I can't believe he's mine!) And for Eric's mom, who stayed 5 days to help us get settled into our new life and to aid in my recovery process. We are in good hands!

So here's to a growing, healthy, adorable baby, a healing mama, and one cool dad!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Monday, May 10, 2010

Now what?

My apartment is clean.
The dishes are washed.
Chores are done.
Cats are fed.
I have nowhere to go.
My yeast is gone.
The eggs are gone.
The milk is gone.
No baking possible today.
My job is over.
Diapers are ordered.
Wipes are bought.
Clothes are folded.
Baby's room is ready.
No baby yet.
Eric is insanely busy.
And I am being driven crazy
by the fact that I now have nothing to do.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Morning Psalm

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
Psalm 139:14

Friday, May 7, 2010

Week 38 re-cap

I left the apartment this morning at 8:30 to walk to the hospital for my midwife appointment. I left in the middle of a thunder storm, and as soon as I stepped out of my building, it started monsooning. Needless to say, I was completely soaked by the time I had walked the half mile to the hospital. Umbrellas don't really work when it's raining that hard.
So I go squishing into the office, sign in, and am being seen within 5 minutes of my arrival (unheard of, but wonderful!!!), soggy, but healthy! And lo and behold, within 10 minutes of having arrived at the hospital, the rain stops, the sky turns a brilliant blue, and the sun comes out. And I'm sitting there soaked. Nice.
I walked home in gorgeous weather (it had also warmed up about 15 degrees in those 20 minutes I was inside the hospital), but when I got back home, the sky quickly clouded up and it looks like we are about to have another storm! Gotta love spring!
Here's a quick re-cap of some events this week:

This is my current art piece underway... a wood block reduction print. So far, I have only carved half of it, as it can be taxing on my belly to lean over for too long. But I do have high expectations for how it will turn out! If you can't tell what it is, it is an animal parade, led by the baby sitting atop the giraffe's back. The animals will be printed in black ink on probably a pastel colored background. Still to be decided...
Here is me at 38 weeks! My cropping device wasn't working, so you get my bathroom tri-fold mirror in all its tripled glory. Eric also took some studio maternity shots of me earlier this week, but it may be several more days until he gets around to processing them (it's his busiest week of the year right now with it being graduation week at North Park). They are pretty fantastic though!
I am also glad that we finally got around to shooting them, as my midwife told me at my appointment this morning that she has a hunch that I will deliver do I, so we shall see if mother's and midwives' intuition proves correct! Eric hopes that baby will at least wait until Sunday, since he is booked pretty much every hour of Friday and Saturday...but I really don't think we have a say in the matter at this point.

I said goodbye to Caleb this week, as it was my last week of work. I love this kid. And he is a total HAM for the camera, if you couldn't already tell! :) I will definitely miss hanging out with him (and the paychecks....), but am looking forward to spending my time with my own little squirt instead of someone else's.

My whole wheat cinnamon swirl bread turned out FABULOUS!!! I put the chocolate swirl loaf in the freezer to save for later, since we have already devoured over half of the cinnamon loaf. Now to find something new and delicious to try...

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Contraction Distraction

Today, I have been having lots of intense Braxton Hicks contractions. More intense then they have been, including some cramping and overall discomfort. While they have not been picking up in speed or strength as of yet, I am trying to put my body to good use while my body does whatever it decides it is doing....
So, my contraction distractions of the day are as follows:
  • Eat breakfast (check!)
  • Take a shower (check!)
  • Get my current thank you cards in the mail (check!)
  • Eat a second breakfast (check!)
  • Make Eric take a shower (check!)
  • Call the cloth diaper service with my list of questions (check!)
  • Print off the IL health insurance application (check!)
  • Eat lunch (check!)
  • Email my church to be placed in a mom's group in my area (check!)
  • Finish off the last loaf of banana bread (check!....sorry Eric)
  • Complete the hospital pre-registration form (check!)
  • Give my blog a new look (check!)
  • Bake two loaves of whole wheat bread - cinnamon swirl and chocolate swirl! (in process....!)
  • Annoy Eric while he tries to take a nap (check!)
  • Wash the dishes (check!)
  • Breathe deeply as another contraction clenches my entire midsection into a tight ball (check!)
  • Snack on some salt and vinegar potato chips that I have hiding in the pantry (check!)
  • Re-paint my toe nails, which have become quite the disaster area in the art scene (to-do)
  • Pack a hospital bag....just in case... (to-do)
  • Nibble on some chocolate (definitely to-do!)
  • Finish baking my bread before I have this baby (to-do!)
  • Review my list of early labor signs (to-do!)
  • Pull together my list of addresses for the baby shower in June (to-do!)
  • Eat a slice of steamy bread when it comes out of the oven (DEFINITELY to-do!!!)
  • Etc....etc....etc.... and the list still goes on....
So far, so good. And yes, I agree with Eric completely. I would totally suck at bed-rest. Excuse my language, but it's true. I would be the worst bed-rest patient IN THE WORLD!!! Let's just say that Eric and I are both very very thankful that this has been such a good pregnancy and that I have been able to still maintain my very very active lifestyle! Which, come to think of it, is probably the reason why my initial weight gain was such an issue.... but, guess what - news flash - I am officially on-target with weight and after taking some maternity studio shots the other night (yes, you will see them eventually...after Eric's crazy week winds down) I officially look CHUBBY. O well. At least I don't have any belly stretch marks to speak of. I've got to stop baking as my main distraction.... :P

Note to self.... this new blog background is a little too pink. I love that cute bird in the pear tree though. Any thoughts?