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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

One month old...Beach bum already

Woah! How did we get here so fast? My sweet baby is one month old already. I need to know how to slow time down a bit. Well, one solution is to get as much of this on video as possible so, Justin and I are ordering a really cool HD camera so that we can have baby Charleigh forever...even when she's 16. This week held lots of excitment as Charleigh was about to meet her only Tyner cousin, Jackson. He was so excited to meet her and super cute about the whole thing. He said in his 4 year old voice, "I just can't stop holding her..."

We headed off to the annual family reunion on Grayton Beach. We could only stay one night as we were still getting the hang of the whole newborn thing, and we had a few other things we had to get back for. But, the short time we had, we milked! It was Charleigh's first trip to the beach and I was anxious to see if she was going to be my beach buddy for years to come, or if she would scream and cry and my beach days would be over...she LOVED it! Just slept most of the time (which is totally fine with me) and was quite content when she was awake...SCORE!
This year's beach trip wasn't all fun and games unfortunately. While frolicking in the water, playing a game of catch with his brother...Justin lost his wedding ring! :( We all searched the ocean high and low for a good while but, no luck. (What were we thinking anyway). Sigh...so, seems like I know what Justin is getting for Christmas (I can't have him walking around without a wedding band, all those girls might think he's available... haha)

I feel the need to make a list of things we LOOOOVE so far, things that make our days easier:

#1 - The Sun Dome: Note to beach-loving mothers out there....the Sun Dome is amazing. Great invention. It kept her out of the scorching sun but has vents on the sides to let some of the breeze through, that way she stayed fairly cool. #2 - The Soothie Pacie: My oh my, my little darling LOVES her pacie. But only her Soothie pacie. And actually, only the green one, I tried to get her a pink Soothie (because it would coordinate with most of her outfits) but NO, she spits it right out and cries. Oh, and I discovered the best invention at Storkland...Wubba Nubs. All it is is a Soothie Pacie with a little stuffed animal attached to the end of it. I know it sounds weird but that little animal (ours is a duck) helps weigh down the pacie and keeps it in her mouth better! It's pretty cool. She is so cute when she holds onto duckie's little wings :)

#3 - White Noise Machine: Charleigh loves background noise. I guess it's because for the first few weeks of her life she ALWAYS had a visitor and there were always people chatting in the background. So, a friend of ours gave us a noise maker that I turn on during sleep times and, she loves it, goes right to sleep :) Although, I am looking for a more portable version, ours is quite large. I'm suddenly sorry I made fun of Jill for all those years!

#4 - Her Swing: This kid LOVES to swing. Since she is quite an alert baby, she only naps a couple times a day (which is not a lot for a kid so young) so the only way I get a shower some days is to put her in her swing. She will sit forever (if I'd let her) in that thing just swinging away. She likes to pick one spot on the wall and stare at it as she goes back and forth listening to her classical music. Most babies go to sleep in their swings but not Charleigh, she is too excited to see everything pass her by over and over again...she's so darn cute.
video
#5 - Gripe Water: So we really like Mylicon but for hard core tummy issues, and hiccups, Gripe Water (by Baby Bliss) is our go-to product. She seems to like how it tastes and it ALWAYS gets rid of her hiccups, which she has a lot of. Plus, there are times I give it to her and I can hear it working in her tummy.

#6 - Humidifier: You have to have one of these for any baby out there. If i hear a little rattle in her breathing, I just turn it on at night and by the next morning she is free and clear :)

#7 - AngelCare Movement Monitor: I think I mentioned this in an earlier post...it's a monitor that detects her breathing. After 20 seconds of no breathing it sends an alarm to me. It really works...100%. I LOVE it. I would not sleep if I didn't have this assurance. I will also include her video monitor in #7...so great!

#8 - Kiddopotamus SwaddleMe Blanket: I've read that just because your baby breaks out of their swaddle right after you do it, doesn't mean they don't like to be swaddled...they're newborns and can't control their arms and legs, they don't know that they are messing up their swaddle. I also read that swaddlig helps with a plethora of things, especially sleep so I was bound and determined to swaddle Charleigh as long as I could. This blanket (from Target) has velcro closure in order to keep the baby from breaking out. I know that some people think that is cruel, so for those of you out there...I'd advise you not to use this blanket. But, for my little darling...she LOVES it! She has slept sooo much better since we've started using it.

Okay, I'll stop the countdown for now but, I am sure we will find new things that we LOVE.
At this point in Charleigh's life, we are still dealing with the problem of no clothes fitting her! Most of her newborn outfits are still too big and lord knows her 0-3 month stuff swallows her whole. Started to worry that she wasn't gaining enough weight because she is a month old and NEWBORN clothes don't fit her! Plus she is in the lower percentile on her weight gain (I track it religiously) so, in my haste, I started feeding that girl until she popped, and the weight gain has definitely picked up!

Another delima...a mullet! I'm glad she has hair and all but it is starting to get longer in the back, and although I have a strong desire to cut it already, my mom advised me that all little girls have to go through that stage before their hair can grow out. So, I guess my daughter's mullet is inevitable :(

I started pumping this week. I don't love the act of pumping but I DO love that Justin can now get in on the feeding game :) And I love that when we are out and about, I have another option of feeding her. Speaking of which, Charleigh got her first bottle this week as well. I was afraid she wouldn't take it, as most moms warn you, but she wasted no time chowing down that sucker. And she hasn't had any confusion when I breastfeed her regularly either. So now, her last feeding every night is a bottle and her daddy gets to feed it to her, unless there is a visitor that wants to help and daddy doesn't mind.

In "not so good" news...I left Charleigh for the first time :( I went to my high school girls' bible study and left he with her daddy and Big mama. She did great and actually, since I was teaching the whole time, I didn't get a chance to really dwell on the fact. But I have never been so ready to get home!

So, I mentioned that she was back to sleeping better again. Well, I have news, this week she slept 6 1/2 hours, then 7 1/2 hrs, then 9 hours straight! Without a feeding. Now, this is not an every night thing yet but, it's progress for sure. Not like it really matters how long she sleeps, if she doesn't wake up to eat, I have to get up and pump regardless so, no rest for the weary :(
And the last cute things she started this week was screaming "ah!" She'll be sitting in her swing and if she is ready to get out, instead of crying, she yells, "ah!" haha. It's really cute. She does it periodically. Sometimes it's a mad "Ah" and sometimes it's happy "Ah".
Summary of one month with baby Charleigh: I am blessed to be her mommy. She is making me paranoid beyond belief. I adore every inch of her body. And The Great I AM Still Is!

On the Road Again! (Week 3)

Yay! this week Charleigh's pesky umbilical cord fell off...finally! Her doctor says she'll have an innie :)

Also this week, I went to see my doctor for the first time since the surgery. He removed my steri-strips (which were the only thing holding my incision together) and said everything looked great. He even released me to drive! PTL, I was getting crazy being locked up with no way to get out.

So, that weekend Jus and I loaded up my car, and I mean LOADED, and headed out on her first trip to Bama. One of the first things you realize when you become a parent is...you NEVER travel lightly anymore! We had her carseat, stroller, pak-n-play, diaper bag, bag for all her other things, my bag, Justin's bag...and I am sure some other things I am forgetting to name! So, far, whenever I take Charleigh anywhere she just sits in her carseat happily and after a while falls asleep. I assured Justin of this behavior and we set off for Bama. Wouldn't you know that 10 minutes down the road she started screaming! I mean that horrible cry that has a little vibrato in it. By the sound of things I wouldn't have been surprised if a masked man was back there torturing her. So, Justin immediately pulled over and we decided that I would sit back there with her for our trip. I took my place in the backseat (no masked man mind you) and she sat happily the whole way there. She was just lonely I assume.
Well, once we got there Charleigh got to meet all her other cousins that she hadn't gotten to meet at the hospital :) Here she is with Tatum (sorry it was the only picture I had and it was taken with my phone, Mom is supposed to be sending me more!) Tatum LOVED Charleigh. She kept saying that Chaw-leigh looks just like her :) and she asked to hold her like 20 times. So cute. Some of them where so excited to meet her and held her repeatedly...others were happy just to look at her and keep walking. One thing we did learn was that Charleigh fits in perfectly with the Shirley family...all 50 of us. We had her Pak-n-Play set up in the living room, laid her down for her nap, and she slept...while 20 other screaming, laughing, and crying kids ran by. She never flinched :)

On Sunday we celebrated Lindsay/Camden's baby shower and headed home at a decent hour. It was so good to see everyone again. It's different visiting now that we have a child. I get more excited for everyone to see her again and really sad to make her leave them :( We can't wait to go back when Camden is born!

Charleigh is changing so much it seems. I know if I, her mother, who is with her every waking hour, can see it, then it must be evident to everyone else out there. It makes me excited to see who she will grow in to and look forward to all the things she's learning how to do. But, really sad at the same time, I want her to stay little forever! I want to be able to cuddle her whenever I want...

One bad change that I've noticed is that she has all the symptoms of reflux (and although I didn't know it, explosive poo is a symptom...check...she has it). But she wasn't spitting up. I did some research and talked to my pharmacist friend and found out she has silent reflux. Basically it means that she DOES spit up, but she keeps it in her mouth and swallows it. Since this diagnosis I have watched her closely, I'll hear her burp, and I KNOW it should be a wet burp but nothing ever comes out of her mouth...but just a couple seconds later, I hear her swallowing! Ew, I know it sounds gross, but I think she is just a thoughtful child and doesn't want Mommy to have to clean up spit up all the time. Poor baby. So, I started burping her religiously, by rubbing, not by patting. And I'm having her sleep on an incline. It seems to have worked for the most part. I still notice some of the symptoms but much less often and, it doesn't seem to bother her too much :)

One very good change is that she is sleeping at night again. I'll talk next week about some different tricks we've used to get her to do that :)

The next post will be her ONE MONTH post! I can't believe it already.

I'm gonna be a Supermodel (Week 2)

This picture just makes me laugh.

Well, week two brought the diva out of my little girl. She got her newborn photos done by Rae Leytham and MY are they cute. Yes, I've seen them but don't have them in my possession quite yet. Be sure that I will post them on here once they are mine :) On top of that, my mom works at my old church in Bama and they have a "church photographer" who absolutely LOVES my mom. So, when we were in Bama, he wanted to take a 4 generation picture with my Grannie, Mom, Me and Charleigh...he piddles with a few other pictures as well. I have yet to see those pictures but again, when I get them...you'll get them! :)

Last Monday, you know the week after I gave birth, the Girls' Ministry started back up for this year. I just KNEW I would be well enough to lead the thing but...one baby and a c-section later...I was in NO shape to go in public. So, I passed all my preparation to good 'ol Whit and the rest of my leaders came together and did AMAZINGLY! I love those ladies. Since then, I've been able to be there and lead my sweet high schoolers. It's one of the only places in my week that I HAVE to be...it's nice to still have a bit of normalcy.

On to something that is not so normal...but SOOO appreciated: DINNER! Our parents and friends have been awesome. From buying us groceries to bringing us home cooked meals, I seriously don't know what we would have done without them. I mean there were nights when I didn't even think of what we would have for dinner until they showed up at our door with food...I then thought, "Oh yeah, I guess we need to eat". So thank you if you were one of our many contributors!

At the beginning of this week, Justin returned to work and my mom came back to help me while he was there. We took Charleigh on her first trip out of the house (besides the hospital). You'll never guess the exciting place we went...THE BANK! Booo! We'll it had to be done, I feel she will now be a responsible citizen of our country. I couldn't let that be her only impression of the outside world sooo, we went to Target too! A few days later, she got to go to TJMaxx! Woo hoo! I don't know what I would have done without my mom and I think that with her help, by the end of the week, Justin and I were prepared to do the parenting thing ourselves. Whew! It was sad saying bye to Granny and Papa (PaPa came back to pick Granny up).
But luckily, Charleigh is about to have a baby cousin named Camden and we knew that we would be traveling up to her baby shower and would get to see Granny and PaPa again in the next week or so :) yay!

That weekend was the Texas vs. Texas Tech game so Charleigh showed her support with her Mommy...I just love comparing pictures of Charleigh with pictures of my childhood:

At 13 days old, we introduced Charleigh to the Lord's House...yep, we took her to church. It was quite panicky for me. I carried around my spray hand sanitizer and threatened to squirt anyone who touched her, actually did squirt a few. I am so afraid of the Swine Flu for her little body...or any sickness at that! She seemed to like church. She just slept through it all, she did let out a little grunt when Pastor Traylor started preaching...I think it was a grunt of approval. (or gas)
So, as of 2 weeks, this little booger is a great baby. She started off the week sleeping so well. I would wake her every few hours for feedings, and she would wake up periodically and wimper but not too often. Ohhh, but then the end of the week came and she decided to turn into a newborn! We had about 3 or 4 bad nights...which seemed really bad because we got spoiled at first. She seemed to develop lots of gas pains and some other issues (which I later found out was silent reflux...more on this next week). I used Mylicon like there was no tomorrow. It worked okay at times, but at other times, nothing could make her feel better. I have to say, that even through the bad nights, she never really "cries"...just wimpers, and grunts...and you know that baby is hurting :( Breaks my heart.

On a great note, she had her two week checkup with her new pediatrician, whom we LOVE, and everything looks great! Doc said her weight was in the 30th percentile, her head was in the 25th percentile and her height was in the 75th percentile. She didn't get any shots this time so it was a quick, pleasant visit. Beware the 2 month appointment...

So, that's all for this week. Week 3 will be up soon I hope :)

Sunday, October 04, 2009

My Miracle Baby (Week 1)

Okay, so I know we are going on our 4th week of having our precious Charleigh girl and I haven't updated the blog yet. It's just that every time I think to update I get overwhelmed because there is SOOO much to share! So, here is how I plan to remedy this. I am going to post about week 1 right now, no more, no less. Then, the next time I get a free minute, I'll let you know about week 2, etc. Sound good? So, here we go... (most of the pictures from the hospital are on facebook if you want to see more)

So, we got to the hospital at 5:30AM on Monday, September 14th 2009. They took me back to triage and started up my IV and paperwork. It took a couple hours for them to pump all the fluids and antibiotics in to me, but in the meantime, our families started to show up to wish us luck....complete with "Charleigh shirts". haha, have you ever heard of such? The g-ma's (and jo) had shirts that said "Team Charleigh" and the g-pa's had airbrushed shirts made (in pink) that said "Charleigh's Paw Paw" and Charleigh's Pa Pa". They are so crazy, yet adorable :) Justin was so cute in his scrubs. I mean, REALLY cute...I tried to persuade him to go to nursing school just so he had to wear those suckers everyday...He really did resemble George Clooney!
I can honestly say that no matter how much I had prepared myself for that moment before surgery, I was scared. I mean, really scared! But having everyone there to take my mind off things helped calm my nerves. One thing that I could have done without...the nurse that was overseeing my IV told me that my BIG room wasn't ready for me yet and I'd have to wait a couple hours while the girl in the room got released. No big deal right? So, nosey me, I ask, "Oh did she have a baby too, why is she having to stay longer than we thought?" Then the nurse proceeds to tell me that she did have a c-section but her baby died!! Wait, what did you just say to me?...I am literally being wheeled back to surgery to have a baby and you just happen to tell me the story of how the last c-section baby just died! I was already nervous before, but after that, my paranoia kicked in.

It was THAT time, they told me to hop up and walk into the operating room...uh, yeah, I had to WALK up in there....that is one room you should NEVER see! Sharp things everywhere! It was FREEZING in there, I immediately started to shiver uncontrollably and just kept reminding them all how cold it was...like they didn't know. One of the nurses went and got me a warm blanket to cover my shoulders with, I loved her. I was surprised at how many people where required to be in the operating room with me: we had my doctor, another doctor to assist, two nurses to help them, the anesthesiologist, his assistant, a nurse for the baby, Justin and ME! This was NOT a big room mind you.

So, they did my spinal (which worked REALLY well, lasted for hours after it was supposed to wear off), they put up that darn curtain that is RIGHT in your face, by the way. And let Justin in. I was silent during the surgery, completely awake and coherent but still, silent. The only thing I remember saying the whole time was, "Well, is it a girl?" (It was) I just sat there and listened, listened for anything the doctor might say to let me know something was wrong, or listening for sounds from the baby to let me know that everything was fine :) I held Justin's hand, Just listening. My doc told me a thing or two that was going on and made sure I wasn't feeling any of it. And then he said those words I'd heard on every Baby Story episode I'd ever watched..."You're going to feel some pressure now..." Holy Lord, understatement of the YEAR! I felt pressure alright, I couldn't breathe! I found out later that all that pressure was the other doctor laying on my upper torso and pushing the baby down toward the incision. Not pleasant, but it was soon over and I waited to hear little Charleigh cry, but before she did I heard one of the nurses say, "Look at that! Her eyes are wide open, she's just looking around...I've never seen a baby come out like that!" It was then that I started to cry because I knew my nosey little girl was alive. The doc then warned me that they were going to get the shoulders out now (which was hardly any pressure at all??) and then she started wailing! She was crying sooo hard, all the nurses commented on how well her lungs worked, hah!
They took her over to the cleaning station with Jus and once they had her wiped off and such, he brought her around so that I could get a good look at her (that quick view of her over the curtain was definitely not enough). Then Justin and the baby's nurse wisked her off to the nursery. My doctor began sewing me up and about a half hour later we were all still surprised that the nursery hadn't called the operating room to let us know how much she weighed...apparently they try to get that info back to the mom ASAP. Not this time. So, my doc finished and headed off to the nursery while the nurses cleaned me up and got me moved onto another bed so that I could go to recovery. Before we wheeled out of there the doctor stuck his head in and said "7lbs and 3 oz". She was much smaller than I expected her to be but, we had just gotten our last ultrasound two days earlier and they estimated that she was 7 lbs and 3 oz! Woah. (by the way, they measured her to be 19 1/2 inches, which I thought was WAY short...turns out that they must have measured her wrong, the pediatrician says she is already 21 inches...I knew it!)

So, about 15 minutes after I got into recovery my mom came to see me and make sure I was okay, I sent her back to the nursery quickly to make sure she got all the good pictures of Charleigh, then surprisingly, Justin walked into the recovery room. My first question was, "Who has the baby?" He told me that our moms were with her...what?!? Apparently, they let our moms go back into the nursery with her, and then my Grannie, and then our dads, and then our siblings...crazy, I never knew they would do that! But no one held her but her daddy, they were given strict instructions that I would get to hold her before anyone else! And it wasn't long before Justin came back with my sweet darling :) Best moment ever!
By this time, they had hooked up three kinds of pain medication that I wasn't aware of and let's just say, my body reacts REALLY well to medication. I started dozing off in the middle of conversations. I remember repeatedly apologizing to the doctor as I dozed off several times during one short convo. He forgave me :) They soon moved me to a temporary room while I waited for my BIG room to become available. Then the friends and family showed up and packed into that tiny place. I was still in and out of conscienceness and apparently in and out of sanity too. I began sobbing uncontrollably and apologizing to everyone there, I absolutely could NOT stop crying. My mom kept saying, "It's okay, you just had a baby and you are on strong medications right now." Then I would ask my mom if I was really crying or if I was dreaming...haha! I couldn't tell what was reality and what wasn't!

I also wanted to eat so badly but the doc put me on a liquid only diet so that I didn't barf. He told me to take even the liquid diet slowly, but, I gulped soup, gatorade, ice chips right down anyway. Then came the nausea. I don't usually get nauseous with medication but I over did myself on the liquid diet and had just two spells of it. I don't remember the rest of my time in that small room. I have pictures of people visiting while we were in there and I am awake in the pictures, put really can't remember them being there...I don't even remember them wheeling me to my BIG room either!At some point in there Justin helped me change into my homemade hospital gown (since I STILL couldn't feel my legs). And I got to truly enjoy the face of my precious angel.
And we started our life as parents! Here is Justin tackling the first dirty diaper, in which he wore gloves. He has since become the guru of poo and no longer cares if he gets it on his hands! We have 20 bottles of hand sanitizer around the house!

Here she is in her first REAL outfit, complete with mittens and bow! Speaking of which, NOTHING fits her! None of her cute dresses, none of her newborn clothes, just a few onesies that really should be premie outfits! So, I have to be creative in order to make her outfits cute.

Anyone who has had a c-section knows that the doctors want you to get up and walk several times a day, and this is no easy task. It is excruciating to get out of the bed, and then, to move one foot in front of the other, or to stand up straight...man, let's just say, I had to have some encouragement from family and friends. Justin and Charleigh decided to help me along and walk with me. As we rounded the corner on our way back to the room some of my goofy family members were standing at the door, hooting and hollering as if we were on our last leg of a marathon. They stole some toilet paper from the bathroom and set up a finish line in our doorway. Jus and I decided to let Charleigh win the race. (You can tell by my face that my pain outweighed the hillarity)
P.S. Anyone who ever looks at me and says that having a c-section is the "easy way" of having a baby...I may punch! Sure the laboring part was not painful but try 6 weeks of being helpless with pain. Not being able to sit, stand, lay down, roll over, use the bathroom without help. It officially SUCKS! I could not and did not prepare myself for this level of helplessness. Just a note to those of you who MIGHT have thought that :)
While in the hospital my favorite nurse was my night nurse named Dorothy. Oh my goodness, she was an angel. She helped me with everything I needed, answered all my paranoid questions, told me a million times how beautiful my daughter was (even took her around to show her off to the other doctors and nurses), and would always bring me special snacks in the middle of the night...her specialty was peanut butter graham crackers and cranberry/orange juice. I have been eating peanut butter graham crackers ever since!

This is my favorite picture of Charleigh from the hospital. Maybe it's the pink bow, but I just love how prissy and dainty she looks here.
On Thursday, they released us to go home. It was late afternoon and we finally got all our things together and I dressed Charleigh in her going home outfit I made for her. It was WAY too big...I had a feeling it might be but oh well, it's the thought that counts right?
The first thing on our agenda was to introduce her to her big sister, Prissy! We had sent home her scent on Prissy's very own burp cloth the day before and it must have worked because Prissy LOVED Charleigh. She usually just ignores babies but she ran right up to Charleigh (in a non threatening way) and started kissing her feet uncontrollably! It was beyond precious.
Here is Justin introducing Charleigh to her room, she is in her dress I made her and on the blanket I came home from the hospital in! So, then we settled in. My mom and dad stayed the first week to help us and then left that weekend to see how we could do things on our own. We actually did really well. It helped that our child is PERFECT! I mean really, she is quite the angel baby. She slept through the night only waking for feedings and then went right back to sleep, from the beginning. I am soo thankful for that. (I'll write more about this in the coming weeks). Before we left the hospital Charleigh was diagnosed with Jaundice so we had to load her up and take her back to the hospital everyday to get bloodwork drawn until the situation cleared up, luckily it didn't take long and she only had to get poked 3 extra times after we returned home. I will admit that the first night home was the scariest. I had a minor, okay major breakdown. Here is what happened. When we got home we tried a new pacie, a tiny one we refer to as "binky". Charleigh could actually keep this one in her mouth! So we were loving Binky, at first. Later that day, I went to feed Charleigh and she wouldn't latch on, she has been a great latcher and eater from the very beginning so I couldn't understand after all those days and nights in the hospital why she just wouldn't cooperate now! I blamed it on the Binky, it must have given her nipple confusion right?!? So, I banned anyone from giving her the binky and we stuck to the good ole Soothie pacie instead (you have to hold the darn thing in her mouth). So, a couple more feedings went down that way and I was frustrated and worried. She cried (which she never does) so hard and I know it was because she wasn't eating enough. She started arching her back and doing a few other odd things. At about 1:00 that morning, when she wouldn't latch on for that feeding either, I did what no new mother should do...I got on the internet and all of her symptoms lined up with a kind of brain damage caused by Jaundice. I burst into tears, woke up Justin and insisted that we take her to the doctor right then. Justin went and got my mom from the other room and I was hysterical. There was nothing they could say or do, I just KNEW my little girl was suffering from brain damage and I had to get her help. Mom convinced me to call the pediatrician and she assured me that her billirubin levels were not high enough to cause this type of brain damage. I also told her about the new "latching on" issues and she informed me that my milk had come in (I surely didn't know it) and that the baby was used to latching on to a soft surface that is now rock hard...a warm compress or pumping should fix the problem. Sure enough, it worked! I stayed up and stared at her the rest of the night. In fact, I did that my first few nights as a mother. So, even though SHE was a good sleeper, I was not. After the stress of that first night, I woke up with 5 cold sores on my upper lip! So that didn't help me feel better about my post-baby appearance :(

I will take this time to plug the AngelCare Baby Movement Monitor! I don't know what i would do without this sucker. You put it under the baby's mattress and it detects her breathing. It sends an alarm if she has stopped breathing for more than 20 seconds.....Wow, it really works, I promise! And it is the only way i've gotten any sleep so far.

At the beginning of the next week my mom came back while Justin went to work. We had fun trying out all Charleigh's toys and contraptions and posing her for random pictures. Here is a pic of her in her bouncer. She enjoys the vibrations. And here she is trying to decide what to watch on TV:
Oh, you'll have to hold on, she's getting a call on her iPhone:
Alright, and everyone who has seen my baby pictures has said that she looks just like I did as a baby. I think there are a few differences but, yeah, she pretty much does. Here are some pictures of baby ME...see what you think?

She has a lot of my same qualities too. When she's really tired you can put her to sleep by rubbing down the bridge of her nose, which is exactly what my mom used to do to put me to sleep, AND, even as a newborn, you can get a smile out of her by playing pat-a-cake. Here is a picture of my mom playing pat-a-cake with me when I was a baby and now playing it with Charleigh...see the big smiles on both our faces!! The cutest thing is that Charleigh even laughs out loud, which totally scares her because she doesn't realize it's coming from her own mouth!

This first weekend was the Texas vs. Texas Tech game so Charleigh and I had to show our support! Remember I told you that NOTHING fits her yet...well, I had to whip her up something Longhorn-ish, for the game. Here is a picture of me and my mom in our longhorns gear too!
Even though her umbilical cord hadn't fallen off yet, Justin and I decided that she needed a bath. So, we took precautions not to let it get wet and gave her a nice sponge bath. She didn't cry...and she HATES to be cold (like her mommy) so I thought she surely would!
I'll tell you one thing, this little girl has a daddy that LOVES her. He is quite possibly the most kissy person I know these days. He is absolutely infatuated! He thinks she is so beautiful and is so proud of her. Everyday he asks me if he can take her somewhere, anywhere to show her off! I hope she always knows that her daddy thinks she hung the moon.
And me, well, as her mother, I could stare at her sweet face all day long, as a matter of fact, most days I do. I've shed many joyful tears since she's been here with us. I just can't say "thank you God" enough. She is so worth it all, worth it all. My heart officially walks (well she doesn't walk yet) outside of my body. She is the tangible proof of my love for her father. She is everything wrapped into one little tiny body. She is worth every inconvenience, and every hurt I've ever been through or will ever go through, every sleepless night, every broken heart. Have you ever had so much anguish, frustration, sadness, hurt, longing pent up inside you that when you finally release it, it comes out in crocodile tears. She brings my heart such relief, every joyful tear that falls is one more fear, or one more pain I'm able to let go. I could go on and try somehow to get you to understand how much I adore this little person, but, I'm sure you'll get plenty of that for the REST of MY LIFE!