Monday, December 28, 2009

Holly's Newest Trick

This is how I found Holly when I went to get her up from her morning nap. She is way too young to be standing up in her crib!!!

Merry Christmas!

We certainly had a fun Christmas together. Two days before Christmas, Holly started crawling. She was pretty slow and clumsy at first, but she's quickly gathering speed and tearing apart everything she can find.

We spent Christmas Eve with Andrew's family and had a wonderful time. We didn't get back home until really late, so we were all tired on Christmas morning. We had our own little present-opening session at our house first.

Holly had a couple of presents to open at our house. She loved the wrapping paper and the presents on Christmas Eve (when she didn't have any to open), but she wasn't interested at all in touching it on Christmas morning. Finally I gave in and unwrapped her presents for her.

Then it was off to my parents' house to spend the day with them, my sister, and her fiance Josh.

Josh and Emily in their jammies opening presents.

My dad handing out everyone's stockings.

Andrew with his Male Nurse Action Figure.

Gathered around the table waiting for our yummy pancakes!

We had such a wonderful Christmas together.

Catching Up

Holly has reached so many milestones since my last post! She started solid foods around the beginning of November, when she was five months old. She loved her little high chair right away but did not love food right away.

However, she has since come around and enjoys pretty much anything we give her, as long as the texture is right. She also started sitting up on her own around this time. Woo-hoo! That was pretty exciting. It's so nice to have a baby who can sit up on her own! This also meant that I could finally stop lugging her around everywhere in her carseat. She loves sitting in the shopping cart. I think it makes her feel grown-up.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Dear Blog,

I am sorry that I have neglected you over the past two months. You see, we have a baby who is very cute but very high-maintenance. The holiday season always gets busy, and my sister is getting married in two weeks!

I know you have felt lonely and I promise never to go this long without a post again. But before I do a marathon catch-up, I need a nap!


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Finally, some Halloween pictures!

Holly the octopus.

A good idea of what happens when I step away for five minutes.

We didn't make much of a big deal out of Halloween this year because Holly is still young. Actually, we did more for Halloween this year than we have in years past! On previous Halloweens, we have hidden in our apartment with the porch lights off, studying, or given in and gone to the library to study. This year we went to our ward's Fall Festival on the 30th (that's where these pictures were taken) and went to my in-laws on Halloween to visit with them. I made Holly's costume, which didn't turn out how I envisioned, but I didn't want to spend much money on it (because, let's face it, she's 5 months old). So considering it cost about $3.00 to make, it turned out pretty well.

Also, I finally cashed in my gift certificate to get a haircut!

The picture really doesn't do it justice--this is after being out in the elements all day. Someday soon I will take a picture right after I style it in the morning in all its glory.

These are some pictures from a mini-photo session I had with Holly this afternoon. Most of them were not great because she really needed a nap, but I thought these were really beautiful.

This baby will be 5 months old tomorrow! She's so grown-up.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

I Can Roll Over!

Exciting things have been happening at our house this week! First of all, on my grocery shopping trip I spent $40.47! That's right! I was pretty excited. I got all I needed to make delicious, nutritious, CHEAP meals this week. Woo-hoo! I'm also planning on making a lot more things from scratch, such as muffins for breakfast, etc. I think Andrew may go on a hunger strike soon from lack of Oreos and potato chips. :)

Most exciting is that Holly learned how to roll over from her tummy to her back! Whenever she does, she is very pleased with herself. The first time it happened it was totally by accident, and she looked shocked. But now she's an old pro.

Here I am, looking cute and getting ready to roll over.

During the flip (she's very fast, so it's hard to get decent pictures).

Yay! Now I'm on my back!

And...we're done.

Holly also loves to chew (much like a puppy). Every time she does this, we crack up and reach for the camera. This time, I finally caught it!

There's nothing like your baby to make you laugh.

I must end this post now, as it's time to make dinner (black bean soup). Hopefully it will be yummy!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Cold Front

Yesterday and today we had a cold front in good ol' South Texas! We did not get a chance to take advantage of it yesterday because Holly was busy coughing up a lung (after-effects of a nasty cold), but this morning I decided to go out and take a walk.

I got myself and Holly dressed for the cooler weather (63 degrees!) and then hauled the stroller in from the garage. I propped Holly on my nursing pillow so she could watch me get ready for our walk. Once I got the stroller in, I remembered that the tires were flat and I needed to pump them up. No problem, right? Uh, maybe if you're anyone but me. I usually don't think it necessary to read or follow instructions when attempting new things. Then I get angry when I have an extraordinarily difficult time accomplishing simple tasks, like pumping the tires on Holly's stroller. By the time I finally figured out how to fill them, I was sweating profusely and thought about giving up on our walk. But no! I had to get out in the cooler weather. By the time I was finally ready to go, Holly was asleep.

Would you believe she slept through our entire walk? She woke up about 30 seconds after I dragged the stroller back through the front door. Crazy kid.

Here are some more Holly pictures, just because I think she's cute:

She always has that "deer in the headlights" look when I use the flash on the camera. It's so funny.

Homemade Cloth Diapers

I have been working on a project: making cloth diapers and diaper covers for little Holly. Am I crazy? (Don't answer that.) My mom gave me her old sewing machine awhile back which I convinced Andrew to fix for my birthday; ever since then, it's been up and running and I have been trying to think of new projects for myself. So...diapers!

I want to start out by reminding you of the earlier post and my not-so-awesome diaper wrapping skills. Well, I have had numerous opportunities to practice since then and I am getting way better!

Notice how it's not completely baggy and begging for a leak? Awesome. It's mostly due to the fact that I bought diapers that actually fit, and I'm not using diaper pins anymore.

Here is a picture of Holly in a diaper cover that I made. This is version number two. It's kind of messed up a little bit, so that's why the picture isn't too close! I finally got the cover the way I wanted it on the third try. I have made a total of five covers, but a few of them are too big--hence, no pictures. Anyway, I'm really pleased with how they have turned out and I am kind of teaching myself how to sew as I go along. I have always been an okay seamstress, but I'm getting much better now that I have a reason to practice.

Also (as you can see in the picture), Holly is starting to get interested in playing with toys! It's pretty fun to watch. She just started doing that this week. She is getting so much more interactive and fun.

Okay, one last bragging picture of my sewing projects: a diaper that I made last week. I am really proud of this one, because it looks really good and pretty professional (if I do say so myself).

I made this one afternoon while Holly was napping. That's another reason I like making diapers: they come together fairly quickly. I like projects where you can see the results rather quickly. It's very rewarding. This one is also too big for her right now, but hopefully it will fit her soon as I am anxious to see how well it works.

Sewing can be so addicting! Lately, it seems like it's all I think about. But it does give me something useful to do while Holly is napping.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Labor Day

I've been feeling bad since I have not updated our blog in awhile, and feeling even worse because we haven't taken many pictures lately! Holly is getting to the age where she is much, much more fun and interactive. I've been spending all my time playing with her and forgetting to take lots of pictures!

We didn't have a very good Labor Day weekend in our house--Holly and I had really bad colds. Yuck. I woke up on Labor Day feeling like the living dead. I had just enough energy to drag myself from bed to the couch and back again. Poor Holly got the worst of her cold on Tuesday. She spent most of the weekend asleep in a little nest of blankets Andrew made for her on our living room floor.

Andrew took one for the team over the weekend and changed diapers, gave Holly a bath, and put her to bed so I could lie on the couch feeling sorry for myself. Thanks, hon! Luckily, Holly and I are both feeling 100% better by now.

For the first 2 1/2 months of her life, Holly was the catnapping queen. Just as I thought she was going to be asleep for awhile and made plans for a baby-free hour or two, she would wake up. (Probably sensing that I wanted to do something without her.) However, in the past couple of weeks, she has started taking AMAZING naps. She sleeps for an average of 3 hours at a time! Sometimes a little more, sometimes less. As I am typing this, she has been asleep for almost 3 hours. I almost don't know what to do with myself! Notice I said almost. It certainly has made my life a whole lot easier since I can get stuff done or take a nap myself during her naptime!

This picture was actually taken just a few minutes ago. She looks so peaceful and cute when she's napping! Especially when I've had a few moments to myself.

By the way, I am totally loving Andrew's new job. He comes home in the middle of the afternoon, we can eat dinner by 5:00 (when I can get it together), and we have the entire evening to relax and spend time together. Except...we always seem to be at a loss of what to do, exactly. We are not the most exciting people in the world, so usually we just eat ice cream and watch TV. Fun, but we should expand our horizons a bit, don't you think?

Holly has really started showing a preference for her mommy. Sometimes she will only want to be held and cuddled by me. I have to admit, it makes me feel good to feel needed. But sometimes I just want to hand her to Andrew for a few minutes! Here she is in one of her less cheerful moods:

Still very cute, but very cranky. She was on Andrew's lap and, obviously, not happy about it.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Adventures in Cloth Diapering

Last night, Andrew had a brilliant idea: why don't we try cloth diapers for Holly? The thought of spending oodles of money on disposables (especially when the time comes when we have 2 kids in diapers) is not appealing to either of us, especially since I'm not working. I thought it was genius and set to work researching cloth diapers online. This all happened around bedtime, and when I get a new idea I cannot sleep. Therefore, I was up until 1:00 a.m. looking at diaper options.

Early this morning, I went shopping for cloth diapers, diaper covers, and diaper pins. When Holly and I got home, I excitedly put the diapers in the washing machine and did some more online research on how to fold them, wash them, etc. Well, the first problem was the cloth diapers that I bought (the only kind available in South Texas) suck and are totally not absorbant. I found this out after reading several reviews. Oh, great. Well, I decided to try it out anyway. Holly was more than happy to oblige and be my guniea pig. Here was my first attempt:

Um, hello? I'm sure you can see the obvious problem here: the diaper is way, way, way too loose! I actually used 2 diapers because they are not very absorbant, thinking that 2 must be better than 1, right? Right? After I folded the diaper nicely I put Holly on it and had to wrap it around her and then fasten it with diaper pins. Uh-huh, that's right. Diaper pins. Which were terrifying because sharp objects and squirmy babies definitely do not mix. I almost had a heart attack when Holly almost grabbed the pin in her fist and then flailed and kicked the entire time the pin was exposed. Once I got the diaper on, I put on the cover and got her dressed.

I know this is not a flattering photo of her, but I wanted to emphasize how bulky and silly she looked. I mean, the onesie barely snapped over the two diapers and the cheap plastic cover. (I didn't want to invest too much up front in case things don't work out--if they do, I will get some better equipment.) I laughed out loud when I saw how funny it looked. Then she was in the thing for about 5 minutes and then guess what? She pooped. As you can probably guess, the cloth diaper leaked all over inside the diaper cover, but at least it was contained. Yikes. Anyway, all the rest of the diapers are still in the washing machine so I put Holly back in a disposable diaper for now.

On a happier note, here is a cute picture of the little one:

The chubs! I love it!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Terrible...Zeros???

Last night, we were giving Holly a bath and had to take some pictures of her post-bath wrapped in her cozy towel. She saw the camera and started smiling! It was a cute, shy smile. She was totally ready to oblige and cooperate with the photo shoot. One of her happiest times is in the bathtub and when just getting out of the bath. Would you believe that a mere 10 minutes after this picture was taken, she had the biggest tantrum (crying spell, fit, whatever) of her life?

Yes, that's right. Someone kidnapped our sweet, mild-mannered baby and replaced her with a monster who cried, no SCREAMED, for 45 minutes straight. Why, you ask? No idea--from our perspective, it was completely unprovoked. We had no idea what to do. It was crazy. I have never had to deal with a baby who literally screamed herself hoarse before. It was a little frightening. Anyway, after Holly's fit was over, we were all exhausted (Andrew and I from passing her back and forth; Holly from crying). Luckily, Holly went pretty much right to sleep after that--who wouldn't?--and slept for five hours. Thank goodness! I am happy to report that our sweet baby was back again this morning. Hopefully we will not have a repeat visit from that demon baby ever again.

Other goings-on at the home front: I am really getting started on food storage! I'm really excited about it and Andrew is (reluctantly) indulging me and letting me jump headfirst into this and probably get very overwhelmed. My goal is to get a year's supply of GOOD food and actually live from it and, yes, rotate our food storage. This means cooking from scratch every day, baking bread, and eventually canning my own fruits, veggies, and meats. Am I crazy? Possibly. But if my plan works, I will be saving our family lots and lots of money, feeding everyone more nutritious foods, and obtaining a generous year's supply of food!

My first step this morning was to go up to the attic (yes, the attic) and get down our little food storage that we do own--a couple of cans of wheat, rice, oats, etc. Next I'm going to rearrange our pantry and purchase...a wheat grinder! So I can make lots of yummy things out of our wheat and other grains I've started stockpiling. I will make updates on my misadventures of breadmaking and other experiments.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Two Months Old

Last Tuesday (August 4th), Holly turned 2 months old! I can't believe that all this time has passed already. I took her to the doctor on the 6th for her well-baby visit. She weighed 11 lb. 12 oz. and was 23 1/4 inches long! This put her in the 70th percentile for weight and the 80th percentile for height. Our little girl is growing so fast! She also had her first big round of shots. She was such a trooper! She was being perfectly cheerful and cooing away until the nurse stuck her the second time. Then she lost it. Who can blame her?

In honor of Holly being 2 months old, I thought I would do a post on things that she enjoys in life. Here are some things Holly loves:

1. Her pacifier. Probably almost as much or more tham she loves her parents.

2. Bath time! If Holly is cranky, a surefire way to make her happy again is to let her splash around in the tub.

3. Being swaddled. We swaddle her every night for bedtime, sometimes for naps, and also if she gets a little cranky. Combine this with the above-mentioned paci and...bliss.

4. Cuddling with mom or dad. Holly absolutely adores being held, as all babies do.

5. Sucking on her hands. Holly has discovered the yummyness and sheer joy of hand chewing. A good alternative to the paci.

Things we love about Holly:

1. Her smiles and funny faces she makes at us. She is so cute! (We may be biased because we are her parents, and if that is the case, oh well.)

2. Her cuddliness. She is so soft and cozy--impossible to resist!

3. The way she "talks." Holly has quite the little voice and coos all the time! It's pretty entertaining.

4. Her easy-going nature. Holly is usually a very happy baby. At night, all we have to do is swaddle her, put her in the swing for a bit, and she's out like a light.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Another Day Wasted Away...

Yesterday (okay, okay, AND Thursday) I wasted at least a few hours online looking at crafting and sewing blogs. My sewing machine is now fixed, so I have been looking for projects to do! And neglecting my poor daughter at the same time. :) Please tell me that I'm not the only one who does this! I now have a long list of projects for Holly and for myself. I can't wait!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Happy Birthday to Me!

We celebrated my birthday on the 17th of this month. Now I'm the ripe old age of 23. (Jeepers, I'm such an old lady...) We went over to my parents' house for dinner and cake. I got a gift certificate to get a haircut and highlights from my parents, which is a good thing because I need it! And Andrew has so graciously offered to fix my sewing machine as a late birthday present. It needs a new motor and I can't wait to get it up and running so I can make stuff!

My mom made a delicious banana split cake for my birthday. I used to request this cake every year while growing up. It was so yummy!

I made Holly a hairbow to match her outfit with my new Bow-dabra, which is my favorite thing right now. It makes making hairbows so easy! This was the first bow I made with my Bow-dabra, so notice how it is as big as Holly's whole head. I got a little carried away. Here she is with my mom. Cute!

I also made Holly a dress to wear to church. This was my first time making a dress for her, so I was a little nervous. I found a really easy pattern online and made my mom supervise me while making the dress. Here is a picture of Holly in her dress and the matching hairbow I made with my trusty Bow-dabra.

Every week, I have the intention of taking a picture of her in her dress. However, I foolishly think that it would be a good idea to wait until after church to do this. As you can probably guess, we have all had it by the time we get home and it never gets done. Therefore, during the week Holly and I play dress-up. Today I put her back in this dress and took pictures, but she did not want to cooperate with me and put on a happy face for the photo shoot. She somehow managed to pull her headband down over her eyes and take the bow off the headband. That told me the photo shoot was, sadly, over.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

ANOTHER Blog Facelift!

Okay, now we have an entirely new-looking blog! I am pretty excited about it, mainly because it's more user-friendly and I can make it more cute. However, I am still working out the kinks a little bit so bear with me!

In other news, Holly was seven weeks old this week! I can hardly believe it. Time is going by so fast and she is getting so big! She is so cute and so much fun. Also, Andrew is starting a new job in a couple of weeks! We are both really excited about it (acutally, mostly it's just me). He is going to work at a hospital closer to home and in the operating room, which should be exciting for him. Right now at his current job, he works from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. three days a week but at his new job, he will work 8-hour shifts Monday through Friday! He will also be on call sometimes. I am really excited about his new, normal schedule. We will be able to make plans as a "normal" family does! Pretty exciting.

Friday, July 17, 2009


Our little Holly is so cute and fun. Can I just say that I feel so lucky to be able to stay home and just be her mom full-time? Don't get me wrong; it's a lot of work, and most of the time I think to myself at 5:00 in the evening, "What on earth did I do today?" But we are so blessed that we can afford for me to stay home and care for her. Yay!
Anyway, little Holly does some things that Andrew and I think are pretty funny. She is such a squirmy baby. Almost everyone who holds her comments on this to some extent. Whenever I take her to the pediatrician's office and put her on the scale, the nurse says, "Oh yeah, you're the squirmy one." I just thought all babies were this squirmy, but apparently not. Holly wants to just be on the move! We have a sleep positioner in her crib to keep her on her back. One day when I was going to get her up from a nap, I found her like this:

She wiggles out of just about anything. At night we swaddle her to sleep, and when I go and get her, her arms are somehow magically out of the blanket, no matter how tightly we swaddle her! We have a little Houdini on our hands.
One of Holly's favorite hang-outs is her swing. I usually don't buckle her in because she doesn't really like it (I know, I know--at the expense of my child's safety. We're horrible parents, what can we say?). She usually stays in there and enjoys being hypnotized by the swinging motion and the mobile. However, when she's had enough, she gets wiggly and upset. Here is what she normally looks like when she's done with the swing:

It's pretty funny. I guess the message I should take from this is, I should buckle her in before she can wiggle all the way out of her swing!
Lastly, Holly has started giving us "real" smiles. Yesterday, we put her in this cute outfit from our good friends Kaulana and Nicole (thanks, guys!). We wanted to take pictures of her in it to show them and Andrew was trying to get her to make a good picture face. So he was saying her name in a really funny way, and she was smiling for the camera! We were so excited to get pictures of her doing her funny little smile.

Finally, I can't believe that Holly is six weeks old already! She is growing so fast and is filling out nicely. Where she used to be skinny, she's getting chubby. I love it! She is more and more of a joy each day.

Fourth of July

I realize that I am quite far behind on our posts, so here is my attempt to catch up. First of all, we had a great fourth of July! We had our friends the Browns and the Browns over for a barbeque. There were lots of kids present, which is always fun. Holly was celebrating her 1-month birthday that day, too. Here is a picture of her and Andrew. Note Holly's cute fourth of July dress from Aunt Karen:

Then, the next day (Sunday), was Holly's baby blessing. It was such a special day for our family! We were able to get together after church with both Andrew's and my parents, so it was a great opportunity to spend some time together as well. Andrew's mom, Grandma Chardan, made Holly's blessing dress for her. We forgot to take pictures while we were all dressed up together, so we had to put Holly back in her dress for a quick photo session.

It was a really fun weekend.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Good Night's Sleep

I felt I had to report that last night, I slept the most since Holly has been born! She ate at 5:40 p.m., at 11:50 p.m., and then again at 5:45 a.m. Way to go, Holly! She even went back to sleep again until 9:15 this morning, letting me get a couple more hours of precious sleep. Now, I know this was a total fluke and will probably never happen again, but it was certainly amazing to get a few good chunks of sleep last night. Now, for some more Holly pictures.

Andrew is teaching Holly to walk already. She is going to be very advanced for her age.

I just think this picture is adorable. She was sitting on Andrew's lap and making the cutest face.

This is Holly in one of her happiest states: in her carseat, with her paci. She actually slept in her carseat at the foot of our bed the first week she was home (she will probably need therapy for that, too). However, it was the only way we could get her to sleep because she hated being flat on her back. She has now given up the fight to her new sleep positioner.

Friday, June 26, 2009

She'll Need Therapy for This...

Okay, we think this is hilarious...but maybe we're just mean parents. Holly is the source of so much entertainment for us!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Happy 3-Week Birthday, Holly!

I cannot belive that our baby is three weeks old today! The past three weeks have passed in a blur of feedings, diaper changes, and not much sleep. Recovery from childbirth has been tougher than I expected. I actually don't know what I expected, but for some reason I thought it would be a walk in the park! I never anticipated feeling so tired and so...yucky and woozy all at the same time. Now I can fully appreciate what new moms go through after having a baby!
We ended up staying in the hospital an extra day, until Saturday the 6th, because the delivery was a little rough on me. Thank goodness for that, because I could hardly get out of bed the day after Holly was born! Maybe I'm a wimp, but I just felt so awful. It was quite the adjustment to being home and taking care of myself and trying to feel better and taking care of this little one! Luckily I feel like we're getting it now. Andrew has been so good with Holly and is such a lifesaver! It makes me upset when she cries or is fussy, but Andrew stays cool and calm and can handle things much better than I can when she is cranky. He has also been able to get a whole month off of work, which is great! Hopefully by the time he goes back I will feel like I have things pretty much under control.
I hate to talk about how hard parenthood is, but it is such a blessing as well! I never imagined that we could love a little person so much. She is so cute and we enjoy her so much! Holly is a happy baby most of the time, which is great and makes her that much more enjoyable. Here are some pictures that we've taken of her since being home.

Quick note: I uploaded these pictures myself! I know how to do it now! You will be seeing a lot more pictures on our blog since I finally figured it out. Yay!