Monday, January 31, 2011

Four Generations, again.

As you can see, there is zero family resemblance.

Saturday, January 29, 2011


With Father Dick's help, we got the Ellie Bean baptized today. It was a really lovely afternoon and a wonderful ceremony in our backyard. Ellie wore "the dress," making her the fifth generation to do so. Father Dick used the baptismal font that belonged to Grandpa Thiel's grandfather (though sadly, Jake filled it with cold water.) And most importantly, we had a huge group of family there to celebrate with us, and to promise to help us in raising Elizabeth.

Here are some of the highlights. I gave my friend Judy our new camera and asked her to snap a few pictures. 200 shots later, we have a pretty full picture of how the day went!'

Since Grandma Rosie has been there for eight other wearings of the baptismal dress (including her own) I figured she should help us get dressed and ready to go.

The proud parents and godparents

The rest of the fabulous congregation that joined us.

The moment of truth!

Tim showing her off to the assembled group.

Ellie with the Thiels (minus Gramps, who had to stay home due to a fever.)

Ellie with all of the Fords and Father Dick

Oh man, getting baptized is tiring. She fell asleep on my arm shortly after I changed her out of the dress.

Thankfully, mama was able to eat some frosting... err... cake... to refuel. See that piece in the lower right corner? Yeah, I saved that for myself.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Grandma Rosie.

I'm pretty sure it's love at first sight.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Life With a Three Month Old.

It's true what I kept hearing - that colicky babies get better around three months. That you wake up one day and things have improved. Miss Bean has really gotten better, and it's just been in the past week or so. It's like she decided that she didn't need to scream all the time. Nursing is pretty much a breeze now and I've figured out how to keep her from gulping too much air and getting gassy. I'm better able to anticipate when she's going to blow out a poop, so I don't try to put her to sleep while she's working on a turd. She can play on her playmat for a few minutes at the time, so I can make a sandwich or go to the bathroom without either having to hold her or listening to her scream. It used to be if we went over to mom and dad's for dinner, she'd spend a half hour eating, maybe a half hour sleeping, and all of the other time SCHA-REAMING like we were murdering her. Last night? She spent a half hour sleeping, she took a bottle and then she spent the rest of the time sitting in people's laps, smiling it up, staring at mom's plates on the wall with only a few incidents of teariness. It's amazing and it makes me so happy to see.

I also feel like we're getting in a schedule. She's usually up around 7am. That first hour is about getting her fed, changed and happy. At 8:20 I meet my neighbor Keri and she and I walk her boys to school and then walk around our neighborhood, getting some sun and talking about mom stuff. Elizabeth usually naps for the majority of our walk. Then we come home, we have something to eat and she takes a nap, and if I'm lucky, I get my butt in the shower before she wakes up. The rest of the day maybe we run an errand, but otherwise we hang out in her playmat, we read books, we practice standing and chase kitties. Once a week we met up with our mommy group and on Wednesdays we go to knitting, where Ellie is the belle of the ball. Usually Ellie can only be awake for two hours before she's ready for another nap. The only downside is that sometimes her naps are 20 minutes and sometimes they're two hours. I can never tell when I actually put her down. Sometimes when I think "oh, she's tired, she'll be out for a long time," she's awake the second I turn my back. And then other times I have to put a spoon under her nose because she's been out for so long that I worry about her breathing.

I love having a three month old. She's so fun! It's amazing to watch her smile when she sees me. She's the most perfect, huggable size. She's learning new things every day, and it's fantastic to watch new little synapses fire and connect inside that giant noggin. I thought she was beautiful and amazing back when she was my tiny 8 pound newborn, but man, I am enjoying her so much more now. And it only gets more fun from here! I am so lucky to be her mom.

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Ellie is super excited. Party at our house! Milk and beer for all!

Friday, January 21, 2011


Despite her boogs, Ellie slept great last night. This morning we had something to eat, we hung out a little, and then I took her into the bathroom for a full service spa treatment. First off, I ran the shower to turn the bathroom into a beautiful steam room. Elizabeth had a lovely hot bath to snuggle in to. While bathing, she got a manicure and pedicure. She also got her hair professionally styled. She got a full body massage, all the way down to her cute little piddies.

What more could you want? I mean, if it was me, I'd be totally pleased with my spa service. Ellie apparently was not. Her tip for me? She pooped on her towel JUST as I was going to put her diaper on her.

In other stories of ingratitude - I pretty much let the cats crawl all over the baby's things. They nap in her playmat, they snuggle on her boopys, they lick the baby on occasion. But today I had to draw the line when Lulu tried to climb into the swing with the baby during her nap. Because the number one rule always is, never wake a sleeping baby.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Baby's First Cold.

Poor Boogerina. She has a runny nose! I called the ped and asked them what we should be doing, and they just advised us to squirt saline up her nose, suck her boogers out and run a humidifier.

Beans and I had a nice trip to Walgreens to buy nose spray, and then mom and Sara kept an eye on her while I ran to pick up a humidifier.

Thankfully, other than the snot, she's in fine form. Eating like a champ, going through diapers like normal, and constantly smiling and cooing at me. The only thing that reveals how crummy she's feeling is that she took a three hour nap this afternoon. Then after being awake for less than two hours she was happy to go right back to sleep. We still were able to read a book, get in a good game of airplane, and go visit mirror baby during her awake time.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


It's the magic number, oh yes it is. Can you believe Elizabeth is already three months old? It seems like yesterday I was all fat and pregnant and yet at the same time, it feels like she's been in my life forever. I'm so glad to have her as my little girl and so grateful that she's growing up big and strong and healthy.

Today we had a busy day with all of our ladies. First, we went for a walk with my neighbor Keri and her kids, dropping one son off at grade school and the other off at preschool. Then Ellie and I did some bath time and some eating. We had lunch with the girls from mommy group, and that was nice. Most of the girls are preparing to go back to work full time, and that's kind of a bummer, but I'm hoping we can all still get together from time to time. Ellie slept on my shoulder for the majority of lunchtime, when she wasn't awake and staring at the other babies. And then off to Granny Jannie's for tea with the knitters. After some eating and pooping, Ellie was pretty happy to sit on Grams' lap and smile and coo at everyone. See? She's growing up!

She's such a funny little egg. She's starting to be able to sit up if we prop her against the couch, and she loves standing in your lap. She's an expert smiler and cooer, and is beginning to mimic and also flirt. She adores playing coy, especially with mirror baby. She still likes hanging out in the bathtub, and loves laying on her changing table and chatting with us. She's even getting better at tummy time! Now I can usually get her to work for two or three minutes before she starts crying - the waterworks used to begin after two or three seconds.

Here she is, practicing her head holding skillz. She is saying "hey, Mr. Crinkly Elephant, how's about you and I figure out a way to break out of here and go lay on our backs?"

Tim is teaching her two important skills at once - sitting up, and finding your hand. He is a good father.

She was very startled when I informed her that she's three months old.

Then she became very, very excited. Oh, my sweet girl.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Sunday, January 16, 2011

That's Right America!

We have mowed our back lawn and swept the patio. You will have to find something else to give us the side eye about. Options include my housekeeping, the fact that the baby doesn't sleep in her crib, and the fact that I haven't lost the baby weight. But for now, the backyard is off the list of topics!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Baby Eating.

I brought the baby into the front yard this afternoon to have Tim snap some fetching pictures of she and I in our matching Green Bay outfits. The pictures were cute enough, but this one is still the best:

She is absolutely delicious.

In other news, I went to the gym this morning for the first time since mid-October. It was not as bad as I feared - my time on the elliptical and the bike were actually easier than they were when I was pregnant. I worried that I'd keel over and die after ten minutes, seeing how little real cardio I've gotten since Ellie's arrival. But she and I have been trying to walk in the mornings, and I guess pushing a stroller uphill for half an hour has helped me not turn into a total mess. On Friday she put up a fuss when we were fifteen minutes away from home, so I got to push the stroller uphill with one hand while carrying her on the other arm. Weights AND cardio! Someday I will even run again! But not right now. For now, I walk.

Friday, January 14, 2011

More Sibling Rivalry.

"The cat is behind me, shooting dirty looks again, isn't she?"

"Believe it, baby. Your newborn lounger is now my cat bed."

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Just Like Her Auntie.

So, Ellie is getting better at looking at things and enjoying the world around her. She's usually fairly happy in her playmat, looking at her toys and kicking her legs. But there is one toy that gets bigger smiles than anyone else. It's Cece, her little seedling doll from her Grams.

Cece looks like a cross between two of her Auntie Sara's best childhood friends - Lolly and Gabby.

We even brought Cece on our walk today (along with her stroller friends, Bird and Bee.) For those of you who remember Sara and her bestie Gabby, I'm just waiting to hear Ellie and Cece start saying "ay yo why yo why yo."

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Just Like Her Momma.

The kid insists on having the blankets up around her face as she sleeps. I like to pull the comforter all the way over my head and then just have my eyes and nose sticking out. However, I am a grown up lady and not at risk for SIDS. The kid, she kills me. I am constantly moving her blankets away from her face and then fifteen minutes later, she's somehow snuggled her way back down.

We have a busy day of social engagements ahead of us. Lunch with the girls from mommy class and their babies, and then a trip out to see the knitters. And then, perhaps we will go for a walk!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Party Guest.

Last night we all went over to Ed and Erl's house for their BCS Championship party. When Ed first invited us, I was sure we wouldn't be able to go because Ellie is just such a pill at night (this was about a month ago when from 5-9 she screamed unless she was eating.) Tim said "who knows, maybe she'll be a totally different baby by then!" and last night, she was indeed a totally different baby.

She didn't cry at all. No fussing. No screaming. She spent most of the night on Tim's knees, smiling and cooing at everyone. She took a bottle without complaint. She let Tim and I both eat dinner. She fell asleep in Erl's arms.

She was a perfect party guest! Except for when she peed on the floor while being changed. Thank goodness for waterproof changing pads.

Tim and I were trying to figure out the reasons for her unusually good behavior. Tim thinks it might be because Ed and Erl have a humidifier running. I chalked it up to the fact that she'd just taken a two hour nap and eaten for 45 minutes before we arrived. And there's also the fact that today she's 12 weeks old, and "everyone" talks about how at about three months colicky jerk babies just magically stop embarrassing their parents in public with their nonstop screaming. So perhaps this is the new, improved Elizabeth Rosemarie.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Four Generations.

Here we all! All together! Grandpa Charlie and three generations of oldest daughters.

She is entranced by Grandpa playing his harmonica. It is apparently the music that soothes the savage beast. Or fussy baby, whichever.

Sometimes she smiles on her own!
Like say.... when the Packers pick off Michael Vick to end the game and continue through the playoffs!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Dear Uncle Barry.

Your Eagles may indeed fly today.

Like a blackbird in Alabama.


Stay tuned to this spot for pictures of Ellie in her game day attire!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

She'll Turn on You!

She's not to be trusted, really.

One minute smiling, the next minute screaming. The life of a small babykins.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Diet Tips.

AKA things that when transferred via breastmilk will cause the baby to have horrible gas pains that cause her to eat for 40 minutes, sleep for 10-15, wake up screaming, rinse and repeat for hours on end:

1. Baja Fresh burritos containing beans
2. Spinach salads

I guess I can do without the burritos, but com'n kid, I can't even have a salad? How am I supposed to loose all the weight you made me gain by FORCING ME to want to eat all the time from February to October of last year? Sheesh.

I went to Toys R Us today and bought her this little mirror thing that attaches to the headrest of my backseat. It lets her look at herself in the mirror (she loves Mirror Baby) and also lets me see her via the rearview mirror. It also has some little hanging animal doodads for her to toy with. She enjoyed it for two or three minutes post-installation. Then of course, back to gassy screaming. Is it bedtime yet?

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Meeting and Greeting

Ellie met the first of her great grandparents today!

I think they all look quite nice together.

Ellie and I had a good day. She took some fine quality naps! We went out to lunch with the girls from Mommy Matters and Ellie didn't hardly cry at all (she also refused to sleep anywhere other than on my shoulder, but hey, she was quiet!) We came home, said hey to grams and did some more napping. She woke up after about an hour and we went to the rocking chair and she fell asleep on me once again. Snuggling with her in the rocking chair was possibly the highlight of my day.

Then we went over to mom and dad's to hang out with everyone. She's getting better and less fussy, but she wants to be with me most of the time, or at least have me in her line of sight. What can I say, being a 24 hour milk machine has some benefits.

She does not like when Petunia mocks her about tummy time. Not a bit.

The new camera is truly great. I took 50 pictures of her in about 12 hours, just because I could. This is one of my favorites - her pouty lip. Usually she doesn't flash it to me at bathtime, because she loves her tubbie so.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Camera.

If you thought I posted/took a lot of photos before, be afraid, be very very afraid. Tim and I's fancy new camera arrived this afternoon, and I am in love. I am sort of miffed that we didn't think to buy a nicer camera before the baby's arrival, but as Tim said "we weren't sure whether or not the baby would be cute. If she was ugly, we wouldn't need a new camera." Lesson learned.

Hell Yeah.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Gettin' Big!

We started off the new year by going back to the pediatrician for Ellie's 10 week well baby visit. She's now 12 pounds, 5 ounces (which puts her in the 75th percentile) and 23.25 inches tall (which puts her in the 50th percentile.) And despite the fact that she totally looks like Sputnik, her head is also in the 50th percentile.

Overall, the doc was very pleased with her growth and development. She's right on track and getting better every day. And then... they gave her a shot. And my mommy heart broke to see how hard she cried. She'd been so sweet and smiley right beforehand too!

Elizabeth is getting more fun by the day. For one thing, when she's happy, she's SUPER smiley. Just the biggest, gummiest, tongue-outtiest smiles you've ever seen. With cooing and squealing and what sounds like it might be laughing. It kills me every time, especially first thing in the morning. She's so happy to see us! What more could you want! She's also getting less fussy during the afternoon and evening hours, provided she gets enough napping done (napping is still partially dependent on how bad her fartiness is.) I think part of it is that her vision is improving, so there's more for her to see in the world around her. She loves being in her playmat and looking up at all of her colorful dangly toys. She's even starting to tolerate tummy time, I think because when she pulls her giant head off the mat, she realizes that there's cool stuff nearby. Her enjoyment of the playmat means that for the first time in over a month, I can put her down on the floor and go grab breakfast without her immediately starting to scream. She does still love to be carried around with her head on my shoulder, so she can check out what's going on. I find myself carrying her in stores, because it's easier than seeing if she'll tolerate her carseat.

We've been going for more walks lately, which she likes. Until she falls asleep. Then her main problem is her black kitty hat slumping over her little eyeballs. I think she's going to end up having blue eyes, but we still have a couple more months until we find out for sure. She still loves her bathtub, though she's getting almost too big for the little hammock thingie. Soon she'll just have to put her butt on the plastic tub itself (the horrors!) I also cleaned out her dresser this weekend - she's solidly into 3 month outfits. All of her newborn and 0-3s are too small for her now.

She's so sweet and fun. I'm enjoying her more every day!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Off My Rocker.

So, I have this baby. And she is fussy. And sometimes, she only sleeps for 20 minutes at a time and the only way I can get her to resume naptime is to feed her, or stand and bounce around on my tiptoes while shushing in her ear, for another 20 minutes at a time. It's hard on my calves, to say the least. So I was thinking, self, you should get some kind of contraption that allows you to rock the baby without having to stand up and bounce her around. Maybe you can find a discounted type of contraption by using the wonders of craigslist.

And lo, I have a rocking chair!

A very nice wooden one for not that many dollars.

Next, I am going to teach the baby how to suck her thumb and or fingers, so that she will stop using me as a pacifier.

Progress is slow, but looks promising.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

...from the Fords

We had a nice New Years - went over to Ed and Erlynne's, had some snacks, played Apples to Apples, toasted to the New Year at 9pm, and then came home so we could get the baby (and our tired selves!) to sleep by 10:30. Ellie was actually really good at the party - she didn't nap unfortunately, but she was bright eyed and bushy tailed and NOT screaming. As long as she's quiet, I'm pleased. I was also pleased that Ed and Erl provided me with a tall boy of Miller Lite. THEY ARE TRUE FRIENDS.

Today we're just maxing and relaxing. There's a rocking chair on craigslist I'm going to call about, so perhaps we will pick up a new piece of furniture. And of course, we have to watch the Badgers! Elizabeth is wearing red, but unfortunately, she isn't big enough for her Sconnie onesie quite yet. It'll happen though!

Hello! Give me some food!

Party on Wayne!