Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter Celebrations

Our Easter festivities were small this year because Drew had to work both the night before and the night of.  Our morning started out as usual since Drew was sleeping.  Once he woke up, we brought Annelise's Easter basket out to the living room so that she could see what the Easter Bunny brought her.
I went fairly small this year since she just received gifts from her birthday and there isn't much that she needs.  The water shoes and coloring book will be brought with us when we go on vacation, books are always a good idea, and then I bought two new pairs of pajamas.

She really wasn't too impressed with any of it.  She quickly tore it all out of the basket and then moved on to open the gifts from Eric, Jess, and Wes.
She really wasn't overly impressed with that stuff either.  Honestly, I think that she was just hungry and ready to go eat.  (She has since played with practically everything.)

Drew, Rachel, Annelise, and I loaded up in the car and went over to Drew's parent's house for lunch.  I snapped a few pictures while we waited for the food to be ready.
Isn't her outfit adorable?  It was absolutely gorgeous here today and was probably around 80 degrees!  After the winter that we've had, I couldn't be happier to finally have some warm weather.

After we ate, we went outside for a family picture.
It's so weird to think that these holidays that we are celebrating are our last holidays as a family of three.  Next year, we'll have a little boy in our family.  I almost feel like we didn't have enough with just us three.  But, I know that Annelise is going to be a great big sister and will love having a brother.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

28 Weeks - Feeling Large

I know that I'm going to look back and be so upset with myself that I didn't write more weekly updates.  I've done well actually doing my pictures, even though they usually don't get taken until Saturday and my weeks change on Thursday, but at least they get done.  It's just strange how much is different this time around, yet, still the same.

Physically, I haven't had nearly the pregnancy symptoms that I had with Annelise.  The only real complaints that I've had lately are the round ligament pain, which still is pretty bad, and I'm really starting to feel huge.  I think that the little boy must have had a growth spurt in the past week, because suddenly I feel ginormous.  I hoisted myself into the van the other day and thought, "Good grief, I still have 12ish weeks of growing to do".  I'm definitely much larger at this point than I was with Annelise.

I did notice that when I put my wedding rings on the other day, that they are starting to feel tighter.  I want to say that I was well into the 30some weeks before my rings felt tight.  My feet are also starting to hurt a lot quicker lately.  That could be because I've gained 27 pounds already.  It blows my mind how quickly the weight piles on at this point.  I'm anxious to see how big the baby is, but we don't have another ultrasound until May 15th.

His movements are so much different than Annelise's were.  I feel like he moves much more frequently and for longer stretches than Annelise ever did.  His movements seem more rolling and wavelike, where Annelise's were some stretches and jabs.  Annelise would be quiet for most of the day but have spurts where she would wake up and move especially after I ate.  I feel his movements all day long.  There have only been a handful of days where he's been pretty quiet during the day.  He also moves very high up on my belly, right at the top.  I can usually feel some body part of his right at the top of my belly.

I went to the hospital lab and did my one hour glucose test today.  I had to go by myself since Drew was home with Annelise.  It was too bad, and I only felt pukey for a few minutes while I was drinking the nasty drink and then shortly afterwards.  The drink isn't too awful, it's just a lot of liquid to down in five minutes.  And, drinking it that quickly makes it taste even worse.  Hopefully I'll hear back soon that I passed.  Fingers crossed that I passed because I really, really, REALLY do not want to do the three hour test.

We haven't made any progress in the baby's room.  His crib and dresser are still in the boxes.  The mattress has arrived and is sitting in the box in the room.  His walls are all painted though, so that's a plus.  I need to start working on some decor for the room.  And, it probably wouldn't hurt to get the crib and dresser set up.  We'll probably do that when we get back from vacation, which is in a little over two weeks.  We need to finish cleaning out his closet also.  I have a ton of clothes for him, but they are all still in bags until Drew cleans out the clothes of his that he's left in there.

As far as names go, we think we have it narrowed down to two.  I sort of want a three syllable name since Annelise has a three syllable one.  Weird, I know.  As soon as we land on one for sure, we'll share, but not until we know.  Hopefully, that will be soon since I need to order his baby book and I want it personalized.

Annelise is still infatuated with my belly and will constantly point to it and kiss it.  She doesn't really want to put her hand on it and wait for him to kick anymore, but she will rub my belly.  She also will growl at my belly sometimes.  Weirdo!  I really do think that she is just going to love him to pieces when he comes out.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Birthday Fun

Drew and I thought that we would take Annelise over to Nicholas Conservatory to see the butterfly exhibit as a fun activity to do on her birthday.  We've never been there, so I wasn't too sure what to expect, but I thought that she would at least have a little fun.
The Conservatory is kept very warm and humid, much like a tropical climate.  There are lots of plants, flowers, and trees that thrive in those conditions.  Everything was gorgeous and there was so much to look at.
The butterfly exhibit was in a netted enclosure that was decent sized, but not too large.  We opened the door and walked inside and the butterflies were flying all around.  Most were perched on the walls or flowers.  One landed on me and I bent down to show Annelise, but she was not too sure about it.  I tried to tell her that it wouldn't hurt her and even put the butterfly on my finger, but she wasn't a fan.  She just wanted to get out of the enclosure and go explore more.
Here she's checking out the koi fish in the pond.  She bent down to get a closer look, but she was a little unsure of those too.
She soon discovered these natural stone stairs and went up and down them about a gabillion times.  Meanwhile, I tried to not hyperventilate that she would trip and end up in the pond.  Thankfully, she didn't.  After letting her roam and explore for a bit, we coaxed her outside to go look at what was out there.  We walked around the paths and she got to see some ducks in the pond that was still a little frozen.
After we got done exploring the Conservatory, we came home so that she could take a nap.  Once she woke up, we went and got some ice cream, which is her favorite, and some dinner.

I just can't believe that my little girl is two years old now!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Two Years

Dear Annelise,

This yearly letter is much harder to sit down and write compared to your first year letter.  I honestly can't believe how fast your second year has flown by.  It went much faster than your first one.  I'm scared to think of how fast this next year will go.  You have grown and changed so much; more than I could ever imagine.

You have started to explode verbally.  I've been so worried about your speech because you really didn't talk much.  You babble an awful lot, but nothing is really any comprehensible English.  In fact, I'll usually look at you when you start babbling and jokingly say, "Why don't you start babbling some English?"  You either laugh at me, or shake your head no, and continue to babble.  You've started saying some two words phrases.  Your most favorite is "thank you".  I love to hear your sweet little voice say thank you without any prompting.  And, you usually do say it without having to be prompted at all.  At least, as far as close family or friends go.  You are a more hesitant to speak when you are around people that you don't know very well.

We still go to Kindermusik every week and you still love it.  You've started to sing along to some of the songs that you know.  You also have grown quite independent while we're there and you rarely sit with me.  You would much rather run around and play.  I've been contemplating adding in another type of class, like a tumbling class.  I don't want to stop going to Kindermusik because I know that you love it, but I also feel like you would really enjoy and benefit from a more physically active class.
One of the biggest changes that has happened is that you are going to be a big sister!  We told you very early on, and you came with me to many of my doctor's appointment.  I don't know if you fully understand it, but you point at my belly and say "baby", and give my belly kisses.  You know what outside babies are, so I'm hoping that you understand that soon the baby in my belly will be outside and here to stay.  You absolutely love babies and love to see them and touch them gently.  I hope that you continue to love babies, and especially your little brother, once he comes out and is home.  I know that you are going to want to hold him all the time.  I'm excited for you to become a big sister  and I think that you are going to do great in your new role.  I'm working very hard to treasure the time that we have left where we're just a family of three.

You have also grown into a very independent little girl.  You insist on doing a lot of things yourself.  You like to buckle yourself into your high chair and car seat, feed yourself from a bowl and spoon when we allow you to eat without being in your high chair, walk from the car to wherever we are going and back again, throw things away, and many other things.  If you can safely and easily do it yourself, you want to and you let us know it if we try to help.  However, you can recognize when you do need help and ask for it.  You are usually pretty good about asking nicely and not throwing a fit.  Sometimes I'll have to remind you to ask nicely.

And since we're on that subject, you have a nasty habit of whining to ask for things, such as a bite of food for example.  I always tell you to ask nicely and you quickly correct yourself and ask in the proper manner.  However, I'm not a fan of having to remind you all the time.  I'm hoping that soon you'll understand and always ask without whining.  I'm sure that part of it is because you're still working on your communication.  I really hope that as your communication continues to improve, the whining will decrease.

Almost all of your teeth are in.  We're just waiting on your top two year molars, which I'm sure will be arriving very soon.  The bottom molars just sort of seemed to appear.  You came down with a runny and stuffy nose and a small fever, which I thought was a cold since I had just checked your gums about a week prior.  Daddy suggested that it might be your teeth, and when I went to feel your gums, the bottom molars were working their way through the gums!  It was crazy how fast they appeared.

Daddy and I took you for your first haircut in January.  The back of your hair had grown so long, and your front was still working on catching up, and I just couldn't handle your little baby mullet anymore.  You did a great job!  You sat in the chair and watched very seriously and didn't fuss or squirm at all.  I was so proud of you.  We trimmed your hair into a cute little bob, and now we're still just waiting for the front to grow out.

There have started to be days where you nap strike.  Some days you handle it like a champ, and some days you very obviously needed that nap that you insisted on skipping.  Naps can range anywhere from two to four hours.  You usually go to bed between 8:30 and 9:00 PM and usually wake up in the morning between 7:00 and 7:30 AM.  Some days are a little earlier, some days a little later.  I wish that I could get you on a consistent schedule of waking up.  Ideally, I'd prefer 8 AM!!
We took you to a Wilderness Resort Waterpark in Wisconsin Dells in January when you were 20 months old.  We stayed overnight with some friends and their two kids.  You did a great job, and once we found some water that was actually warm, you had a blast.  You love going down slides and riding rides.  In fact, once you realized that we could go down some of the bigger slides as a family, you wanted nothing to do with the smaller, more age appropriate things.  I knew that would happen though.  You've loved being adventurous for a while now.  You really enjoy the rides at fairs and always ask for more.

Daddy and I have started working with you on potty training.  We aren't pushing it too hard, but we're slowly introducing it and letting you figure it out.  You've peed in your potty seat once.  You don't like to sit down and be patient and wait for yourself to go.  You usually hop up and sit down quite a few times before I get annoyed and tell you that we're done playing.  Even giving you a book won't calm you down for long.  Hopefully you'll relax soon and start using the potty more.

You weigh almost 29 pounds and are 35.5 inches tall.  I just recently transitioned all of your clothes to size 3T and you still wear a size 4 diaper.  However, you are wearing 2T in jeans.  You are wearing a size 6 shoe.

I can't believe how much you've grown and changed and I'm excited to see how much more you will grow and change in the next six months.  Even though we definitely have our challenges, I can't believe just how much my heart swells with love for you.  You bring me so much joy and laughter.

Love you forever,