Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Emma Joy: Two Years Old

Our baby girl turned 2 at the end of July so I wanted to pop in here and document it before any more times goes by! We celebrated this birthday much like her first birthday, only inviting immediate family to our home for a small Trolls themed celebration. I'm so glad we've done her first 2 birthdays this way. Jonathan and I get to truly enjoy the party with Emma without feeling like we have a ton of guests to host and missing out on the whole reason for the party. We kept things super simple (this was also about 6 weeks after Jackson was born) with pizza, some of Emma's favorite snacks, a homemade Trolls cake and a ton of balloons. Emma woke up from her nap to a sea of balloons in the living room, her favorite songs from the Trolls soundtrack blaring and both sets of grandparents plus some of her aunts and uncles greeting her ready to party. It was a great day!

At 2 years old, Emma Joy:

- weighed in at 23 lbs. at her doctor appointment. After so many visits of her weight being on the low end, but not concerning, the doctor finally said she is too skinny. She gave us some suggestions on what we can give her to help a bit but also wasn't concerned enough to say there is anything wrong. We're just chalking it up to her being petite and not being overly worried about it. She's actually already gained a pound since then so I think adding some things into her diet and her generally being better about eating has helped!

- comes up to me, tilts her head and asks if I'm okay if she sees me upset or crying. The other day, she even brought a tissue and started patting my face to dry my tears. She also started patting our backs when we hug her, something she's picked up from us doing when we hold her. My heart can't handle this stuff!

- is getting more consistent with her taste in food. She loves bananas, cantaloupe, goldfish, fruit snacks, scrambled eggs, grapes, smoothies and literally anything mommy or daddy are eating/drinking

- Calls her blanket her "bop" and has become seriously attached to in the last several months. One of Jonathan's clients actually made this for Emma before she was born and it hung over the back of the rocker in her room until she was maybe 18-months-old when we finally felt comfortable putting it in her crib with her. It wasn't long before she absolutely needed it when she was upset. If she gets hurt or upset, she could be screaming hysterically but won't come to you for comfort until she has her "bop." That, and a lovey that my mom bought for Emma as soon as we found out she was a girl, go to bed with her every night and it's really sweet!

- holds hands to pray with us before dinner now. Once we moved Emma out of the high chair into a booster seat at the table, Jonathan would reach out for her hand and say "Pray?" before dinner every night and for a while, so always said no. Until one glorious day, when he did it and she grabbed his hand and held it as we prayed. It was and still is the sweetest thing. She just recently started repeating "amen" after us and it's pretty special!

- loudly and inquisitively says, "Daddy!?" when any of the following things happen: she sees/hears a loud truck or sees/hears lawn equipment

- loves to give hugs, kisses, high fives and 'knucks" and recently started patting us on the back when we pick her up because we always do that to her. It's so sweet!

- is copying everything I do to take care of her baby brother with her Moana doll or her baby doll. All day long, she "changes" diapers, tries to swaddle, puts my boppy pillow on her lap and pretends Moana needs to eat and puts them down for naps. Tonight she even gave Moana milk out of her sippy cup. It's really sweet (and so entertaining) to watch her mirror what she sees me do everyday!

- went through a stage of weird sleep that started just before her 2nd birthday and is really just now getting back to normal. She's always been a really good and predictable sleeper going down around 7:30 and waking up between 7-8 a.m., then all of a sudden she was waking up at 5 or 6 and screaming or waking up just after we put her down and crying for us to come back. It's been a week or so since she's done any of that and she's back to her 7:30ish wake up time, thankfully!

- started going to a Mom's Day Out program at church in August. She goes on Wednesdays from 9-1:30 and she loves it. I was nervous when I signed her up that I'd feel guilty dropping her off every week or that she'd be upset every time, but it's been great for both of us. She's been fine from day one at drop off and she is always excited when she realizes she's going to "cool," as she calls it. I'm able to spend some one-on-one time with Jackson, run errands or get work done at home and it's good to know she is getting interaction with other kids her age and learning, too!

- is not potty training yet. She showed some interest just after Jackson was born and her friend Asher came over and used the bathroom, so we bought a potty and have been keeping it in the bathroom ever since. She asks to sit on the "cotty" a lot but we don't think she really gets the point yet, so we're working on helping her understand what's what before we really try to potty train. I'm in no rush!

- absolutely adores her daddy, loves to roar like a lion, loves books and puzzles, will say "Hi" and "Bye" dozens of times to anyone that steps in our house, loves to help around the house with laundry and cleaning, still can't get enough Moana and Trolls, still loves to dance,  mostly loves having a baby brother and has been learning to count to 10 and it usually goes something like, "1, 2, 5, 9, 10!"

- is very two in the sense that temper tantrums are a thing now. These are super fun and it is crazy (and slightly funny) how asking Emma if she wants milk or juice, her saying she wants milk, me pouring milk and handing the cup to her can lead to a half hour of pure chaos. The craziest part to me is how after the screaming, throwing herself on the ground, flailing her arms in the air and basically going bananas, she'll look up at me and laugh or pick up a toy and move on like it never happened. I try to keep in mind that temper tantrums are basically her frustration at not being able to communicate her feelings at times and that sometimes, she doesn't even know what she wants. It helps me stay calm and not get all worked up when we are in the thick of a meltdown to remember that she is acting exactly how a two-year-old is expected to act. And for the days when these occur around the clock, there is always wine.

I could probably go on and on with little things I don't want to forget about Emma at this age, but then I'd never get this post up. I really can't believe she is 2! Bittersweet is the only way I can describe how it feels to watch her grow. It's joy and it's sadness for me! I love seeing her change, learn and evolve into her own little person, but it's just so painfully fast.

I'm so thankful for this sweet girl. She has such an easygoing, silly, fun-loving personality. I can't get over how much joy I get out of just watching her. I still close my eyes and thank God when we are out and about and she reaches up to hold my hand. I'm proud when I see her laughing at herself and dancing around the house like a total goofball. I feel humbled when I see her mirroring the things I do around the house - my reminder that she is watching everything we do and learning from us when we don't know we are teaching her. When I exercise in the living room and she thinks it's so much fun to hop around with me and jump on my back while I stretch on the floor, when I go in the kitchen to prep dinner and she wants to sit on the counter and "help" me, I see how in what I would normally consider ordinary moments, we are making memories and she is just as happy doing that as she'd be finger painting or playing with play-doh. She makes these "mundane" activities more fun for me, too and I'm thankful to have her as my sidekick.

I've already seen how she can spread immense joy to the world just by being who she is and I can't wait to see the awesome things she will do. Thank you God for making me her momma!

Friday, August 24, 2018

Jackson Luke: 2 Months Old

This photo pretty much sums up how we're all feeling about this past month with our sweet boy. I can't believe he's been in our world for two months now.


- At 2 months, Jackson weighs 10 lbs., 12 oz. and is about 23 inches tall

- We've been exclusively breastfeeding for 2 whole months! It feels like a huge accomplishment after the challenges we faced at the start.

- So many smiles! This happy boy started smiling like crazy and we can't get enough of it!

- Wearing all 0-3 month clothes and size 1 diapers

- Loves to stare at the big clock in our living room and the ceiling fan always catches his attention

- Started sleeping longer stretches at night -- just a few nights ago he went 8:30 PM - 4:30 AM and I felt like a new woman. We still have nights where wake ups are all over the place, but we're definitely getting more sleep these days than we were!

- Looooves sleeping in the Happy Baby carrier when we're out and about. After a few outings that first month where I hoped he'd sleep in the car seat and he wasn't having it, I caved and ordered this carrier which I'd had my eye on but didn't love the price tag. I'm so glad I bit the bullet and bought it because it is so comfortable to wear and he is so content in it. I've been able to wear it running errands with him and even through church service and he's slept through it all.

- He started napping in his crib for most naps during the day. I started putting him down in there mostly because if Emma is playing or Abby starts barking, it's hard to keep him from getting woken up if he's sleeping in the swing or in the rock n' play.

- Big sister Emma is pretty involved in this boy's every move. If he's doing tummy time, she is part of it. If he is laying on the play mat, she wants to be lying next to him. She kisses him, high fives and gives him "knucks" a billion times a day. If he's crying, she'll tell me he's crying. Sometimes if he's in the swing and he starts crying, she'll go over and attempt to get him out herself. The other day, he was sleeping in the swing and I was cleaning up around the house when I walked out and saw she'd put a teddy bear in the swing with him. My heart can't handle this stuff. It's so sweet seeing her love on him.

A few snapshots from Jackson's 2nd month:

Happy 2 months, sweet boy! We're loving life with you in it.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Jackson Luke: One Month Old

Hello! I should backtrack and say that Jackson Luke was born on June 20, 2018 at 12:02 PM via emergency c-section. Maybe I will share the full birth story someday (Emma is 2 and I still haven't gotten around to writing hers) but the short version is that the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck. Every time I pushed, his heart rate went down and after only a few tries, the doctor made the call and rushed me to the OR. I'm so grateful to my doctor for making the call rather quickly and getting this sweet boy out into the world safely.

Jackson Luke Snyder :: June 20, 2018 :: 7 lbs, 9 oz.
Somehow this precious boy has already been part of our world for 1 month! 


- One month stats: 8 lbs. 12 oz.; 20.5"

- We pushed through some serious challenges (i.e. mastitis) and made it through the first month exclusively breastfeeding

- Jackson gets tons of hugs and kisses from his big sister every day, but also gets poked in the eye and kicked in the head on occasion. There is no doubt he is loved by her, but she hasn't quite grasped how fragile he is yet!

- At one month, he's pretty much outgrown most of his newborn sized clothes and wearing mostly 0-3 months 

- At the end of his first month, Jackson was starting to sleep for longer stretches at night typically going down around 9:30/10 and waking up around 2 or 3 a.m., then waking up again around 6 a.m. Those middle of the night wake ups are totally manageable assuming he nurses for 30 minutes or so and goes back down easily, but that hasn't necessarily been the case every night

- At only about 10 days old, we took Jackson and Emma "away" (not really away, but about a 45 minute drive from us) for a staycation with some of our friends for a weekend. The timing was not ideal and Jonathan ended up taking me to the emergency room that Saturday night to get treated for mastitis, BUT I'm still glad we went! 

- Jackson loves to snuggle and does really well in my Happy Baby wrap. He's started to become more aware of his surroundings and we love to catch him watching me or Jonathan. 

A few snapshots from Jackson's first month:

 Jackson's first month was a serious rollercoaster of emotions, but I think we're all starting to settle into our new normal. We're all incredibly smitten with this sweet boy!