2009: year in review

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This year has been quite a year for us! I’ll try to keep this concise.

  • January: We found out we were pregnant in December 2008, but didn’t tell anyone until after we’d seen the doctor in January. We were only going to tell our family, but ended up telling everyone, though I didn’t announce it on my blog until my 2nd trimester. I started back at my job part-time (three days a week). Because I was sick all the time, I pretty much hid under a rock for three months.
  • February: We visited California and I met Paul’s relatives for the first time. I had a lot of trouble with headaches, having to call in sick to work at least once a week. My boss was so understanding!
  • March: I attended a women’s conference with my church at Calloway Gardens. I finally started feeling better by the end of the month when I was 17 weeks along. I switched from my OB-GYN (who would not help me with my headaches) to a midwife, who was kinder and more understanding. We also contacted a realtor and began our house search.
  • April: We found out we were having a girl and started discussing names! I started growing out of my clothes, and hit up all the thrift stores on the north side of Atlanta to furnish my maternity wardrobe. At the end of the month, we went camping with Jes and her family.
  • May: We put an offer on a house being sold short sale on May 5th, and started the loooong wait. I ended work in the middle of the month, which made me sad, but I was excited to be moving on to the next phase of my life.
  • June: Traveling month! We first went to Indiana for the Gerig reunion, then I went on to New England to see friends and visit with Paul’s family. When I got back, I photographed a wedding for a friend of mine. I was exhausted by the end of the month. We also started taking a Dave Ramsey class that lasted all summer, though we had to miss the last two sessions because of Savannah’s arrival.
  • July: The heat was starting to get to me, so I stayed indoors and rested a lot. Our offer was approved for the house, so we did all the inspections and stuff, and we had to make big decisions about whether we wanted to continue to pursue it. We finally decided yes, but the appraisal came back lower than the offer price, so we resubmitted our new offer and waited again. My mom and sister drove up for a baby shower my Atlanta friends threw for me. I also found out my midwife was leaving the practice, so at 34 weeks I switched to a new midwife/practice.
  • August: Knowing I was due at the end of the month, I started winding down and wrapping things up. I made lunch dates with friends, tried to catch up on blog posts, etc. On August 21, we found out the new offer was approved on the house. Savannah arrived on August 22nd! The next 9 days were so chaotic as we dealt with trying to get insurance on the house, I dealt with trying to nurse, and I battled some major baby blues. My parents came up the weekend Savannah was born, and Paul’s family visited the following weekend. We closed on the house on August 31st.
  • September: Whew, what a month! My parents were here for most of the month, and my sister and brother also visited for Labor Day. We spent the entire month working on the house. I got a breast infection and finally was able to nurse Savannah, after 2 weeks of pumping exclusively. Baby blues and hormones raged, and I was overall stressed with packing, moving, and new baby. We moved into our new house at the end of the month, thanks to some wonderful friends who graciously helped us.
  • October: Life settled a bit as we started our Bible studies again. We went up to Indiana in the middle of the month for Isaac’s wedding. CNN did a redesign that kept Paul extremely busy – working 6 or 7 days a week, and putting in 10 or more hours each day. By the end of the month, things were back to normal, the hormones settled down and the baby blues finally faded.
  • November: We had several visitors coming to see Savannah, which was wonderful. Paul’s parents were two of those visitors, and we had an early Thanksgiving dinner with them and his brothers. We were surprised to get time off for Thanksgiving, so we ended up being able to go to Orlando for the week. We bought a video camera on Black Friday – yes!
  • December: We put up a Christmas tree, but didn’t have the energy to decorate any more. Next year! Savannah got her first set of shots – I’m such a mean mommy! We also left Savannah with a baby-sitter for the first time while we went to a Christmas party. We went back to Orlando for Christmas, which was lovely, and I turned 27. We got back last Monday, and had two more days of vacation before Paul went back to work today. We plan to ring in the new year with our usual boringness, at home, since Paul works tomorrow too.

Oh and since this is the end of a decade too (I know it isn’t technically, but I’m going with the crowd), I’ll do a decade in review: I started 2000 living in Peru. I graduated from high school, moved to the States, learned to drive and got my license (that was a busy summer!). I went to Taylor for college, met my future spouse, and graduated after 3.5 years. I moved to Atlanta, started my first “real” job, and got my first apartment. I got married, moved 4 more times, and then had a baby three years later. We also bought our first house! This has been quite a decade. :-)

help for a southerner!

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When I told Paul that I was going to write this post, he laughed at me and said, “You’re such a Southerner.”

The truth is, I haven’t been anywhere colder than Atlanta since Christmas 2004. And I think I’ve forgotten how cold up north can get.

I don’t know why we decided to visit New England in January except that we were thinking it would give Paul’s parents a chance to have Christmas with Savannah before it got too far away from the actual holiday. Now that we’ve bought the tickets, I’m panicking, wondering if we should have waited until April or something! Oh well.

I’m really nervous about flying with Savannah. Paul wasn’t able to get a direct flight, so I will have four take-offs and landings to deal with. I have been told to nurse Savannah during those – I’m just praying that I don’t throw up myself as I usually want to do! So yeah, I’m a little scared.

The other thing I’m worried about is being able to keep Savannah warm while we’re up there in the bitter cold. For those who live in New England, how do you keep 4 month olds warm in the winter? The warmest thing she owns is a bear outfit. We’re going to borrow some sort of snow suit. What other things should we get for her before coming? I don’t want to go too crazy and get her all these clothes that are too warm for Atlanta, but at the same time I don’t want her to be cold while we’re up there. Any ideas would be most welcome! :-)

Thank you!

Christmas, birthday, and all the other stuff

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I pretty much avoid the computer when I’m in Orlando, just checking my email and Facebook on my iPod Touch. I’m having too much fun to be on the computer. :-) We got back from Orlando last night, and had a lovely trip.

* We drove through Savannah as planned. We ended up only being able to drive through the city and not getting to stop and take any pictures, due to running out of time (story of our lives). It was fun to see it again, though!
* We arrived into Orlando around 7pm on December 23rd, in time to eat a mini-Christmas dinner with my family and open gifts with my brother and sister-in-law. They went to her parents for Christmas Day, so I was glad that we were able to work it out to have Christmas with them a few days early!
* We went to St. Andrew’s Chapel (R.C. Sproul’s church) for the Christmas Eve service, which was lovely. They have a traditional service with classical music and hymns and Scripture readings and candlelight, which is exactly how I love Christmas Eve services to be. Also, Dr. Sproul’s message was a good reminder, entitled Saved From What?. “If you don’t believe in the wrath [of God], you have no reason to be excited at Christmas.”
* After the service, we were hungry so we stopped at Denny’s. We ended up having a miserable time because Savannah started crying and wouldn’t stop. We had to scarf down our food separately and left without the nice evening we were hoping to have. This is the first time we’ve had to leave somewhere because of her, and I know it’s only the beginning.
* We went to my grandparents’ on Christmas morning and opened presents. Then we had Christmas dinner at the dining room in their retirement community. It was a delicious meal and I think my family enjoyed not having to cook!
* On my birthday, we went to Mellow Mushroom for lunch, then went to the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey, which is a center that treats injured or orphaned birds of prey, and releasing as many as they can back into the wild. Those who can’t survive in the wild live at the center, and you can go see them and learn about them. It was really neat! That evening, my parents watched Savannah and Paul and I had a date night at Ruby Tuesday’s (love that restaurant!) where I enjoyed my first alcoholic beverage since becoming pregnant. A wonderful birthday.
* On Sunday (the 27th), we had wonderful lunch with Joanna – it was so nice to see her! For dinner my parents made my favorite – beef-a-roni, yummy. I love spending time with my family!
* We left yesterday – Monday – to return to Atlanta. We ended up getting a late start due to not being able to find Ebony (we were about to just leave without her!), but she showed up right as we were walking out the door. It only took us 8 hours to get back to Atlanta, because we tried to limit our unnecessary stops. (Going from Savannah to Orlando, it took us 6 hours and we stopped 4 times! That’s ridiculous, especially because every time was for us and not because the baby was fussy.)
* Today and tomorrow are catch-up days – taking down Christmas decorations, getting stuff done on our to-do list. Paul goes back to work on Thursday, the 31st. I like having him around!

I hope your Christmases were just as nice as ours was!

dear savannah: four months

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Savannah, Christmas 2009

Dear Savannah,

Today you are 4 months old. You are even more aware of your surroundings and of us, which has been a lot of fun!

This month had been important because it’s your first holiday season. We went down to Orlando for Thanksgiving. Your first trip to Florida! You continue to do great in the car. It was much warmer in Orlando and you were really hot the first day or two. We had to strip you down to your diaper! You had a good visit though and of course everyone loved seeing you. We are headed back to Orlando for Christmas.

We had family pictures taken in downtown Atlanta by your Uncle Jeremiah. You insisted in chewing on your hand for all the pictures, but they were cute nonetheless. We had copies made and sent them to all our friends for our Christmas cards.

We went to the doctor at the beginning of the month. You weighed 13 lbs and 4 oz and were 24 inches tall. You’re in the 75th percentile for both. Nice and healthy! You got your first two shots which you screamed through and broke your mommy’s heart. You seem to be okay now though!

One thing you’ve started doing is “singing” – making squealing noises from your bouncer. You’re adorable. You can sing to yourself for a long time!

Savannah singing

You’re getting really strong. You can’t sit up by yourself yet, but you do pretty well in the Bumbo seat and you can hold your head up really well in the sling. That makes shopping with you much easier! Everyone always comments when you’re in the sling. It’s a nice way to carry you.

You seem to like people, though you’re often shy at first. You love flashing big smiles though. You have no idea how much people love that! You enjoy interacting with people. You don’t mind your bouncer, but you usually like having people around to talk to you while you’re in it.

Naptime is something that has evolved this month. Before, you would sleep whenever and wherever. But you started getting fussy, and I realized that you needed to be put down in a quiet place to sleep. At first you would only sleep for half an hour or so, but then I figured out that you prefer being swaddled. Now I swaddle you for naptimes and you sleep for a long time! A few days ago, we went to visit a friend and you napped very well at her house. That was good! It’s still easy because you’re not rolling over yet. It will be more difficult as you gain mobility.

The past few days you’ve started to play with toys. You’ve been noticing them all month, but you haven’t really attempted to grab them. You’re starting to do that a little now which is fun! You like putting things in your mouth as all babies do. I’m sure we’ll see a lot more of that next month!

You continue to be a source of joy and entertainment in our lives! We love you!

Love, Mommy

Me and Savannah