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Dear Ruby Mae, {Happy 1st Birthday!}

23 Jun

Dear Ruby,

Happy first birthday to the most beautiful, sweetest, craziest, cuddliest, cutiest, smiliest, giggliest, loveliest, smartiest (we have no clue where you get it) Baby Goo in the whole Universe!!!!!!!!!!!

I cannot believe it has been A WHOLE YEAR since the day you came charging into our lives. There I was, dealing with your crazy brother and your cutie father, in full fledged denial about having you. I kept telling myself “There is no way this baby is coming before 41 weeks” because your crazy little brother was almost two weeks late. Thanks, by the way, for not making me wait that long. But really? Preeclampsia and risk of stroke? Thanks Ruby. Its a good thing you are the most beautiful little girl I’ve ever laid my eyes upon.

I was in such shock when we went to the hospital on June 23rd and found out that, you would in fact be born that day. That even as they were stitching me back up (Again, thanks Ruby) I couldn’t believe it was finally the moment we had anxiously been awaiting for our whole lives. The day we would meet our daughter, the day Jude would meet his sister, his new best friend.

After surgery, they took me into recovery and laid you on my chest, my heart doubled in size and I knew that nothing in the world could make our family as happy as you made us that day. I was so nervous to attempt breastfeeding you, because Jude had NO interest in trivial things such as eating, sleeping or doing anything but be crazy. But your father brought you to me, the nurse to my right smiled and encouraged me and in a matter of a few minutes, you did what I never thought was possible, you latched. After two unwanted C-sections and a failed breastfeeding attempt with Jude, that moment validated me as a woman and a mother. We had and instant bond and I just couldn’t believe how unbelievably lucky our family was to welcome this gorgeous, beautiful, sweet princess into our lives.

And once you latched? You just kept on wanting to latch, girl. I knew to expect to breastfeed most of the first 3 months of your life, but girrrrrrrrl, you did not STOP breastfeeding for the first 3 months. Thank goodness Daddy bought me that iPhone4, nawwhatimean?

When we first brought you home, I think Jude liked you, but he pretty much hated us. For like…two months. So that was fun…playing on my iPhone, secretly loving every second of being “forced” to bond with you in a chair 6 hours a day.

I guess that magic boob juice did its thang because, you started to (slowly, really slowly) grow and develop and each day that passed I would look at you and think, ‘No seriously, this girl ACTUALLY gets cuter every single day.’ My favorite pass time became torturing you with an insane amount of wardrobe changes and gigantic bows and flowers on your head. You were such a good sport and often cooed and smiled as I took a ridiculous amount of photos of you each day.

Soon the fall came and we got SO excited to pick out costumes for Jude and you. We ended up dressing you up as a Puppy and a Kitty and let me tell you it was the cutest thing in the whole world. No, for real. We had a big party with all of your guys’ friends and you both had a blast. Thanksgiving came and went so quickly and soon it was your first Christmas. I tortured you even more than I tortured you before with wardrobe changes. I’d say I’m sorry, but…I’m not. You were very interested in watching “The Jude Show” as Daddy and I have named it, and you didn’t even act disappointed when Jude got all the good presents and all you got were more stupid bows and boring baby food. Of course you were both equally spoiled by your Nana, Grandpa, Papa, Lita & Aunties and Uncles. They even got you real presents, that’s love. Just remember who breastfed you in the chair 6 hours a day, mmkay?

All of the sudden it was 2012 and it has been….eventful to say the least.

In January Jude was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder and I think you were a little bit disappointed, because you enjoy The Jude Show and you really didn’t see the need for the volume to be turned down like the Doctors and us did. But you loved him despite his success in learning how to communicate more and his need to throw tantrums lessening. The second you started sitting up and attempting to crawl, a light went off in Jude’s mind that you were in fact awesome. His new best friend forever. He began kissing, hugging, playing and singing with you at every opportunity.

Now, as your Mama, I’d like to think that you save your brightest, most endearing smile just for me (THREE. MONTHS. BREASTFEEDING. Non-stop. Non. Stop.) but one day I saw your brother push Daddy out of the way to run to you and kiss you first thing when he woke up and there was no doubt in my mind that you in fact save your brightest, happiest, sweetest smile for your best friend, your crazy brother. And every day that passes, your relationship grows and changes. You chase, tackle, scratch and kick each other like wild animals. You snuggle on the couch. You share your food with each other (and coming from you, that’s a high honor) and sometimes even share your toys. I hope that your relationship will always stay this way, but alas that isn’t usually the case. But I hope when you are old enough to read this and really understand, you will remember that you saved your brightest smile for your brother at one time and no matter how hard life gets, I close my eyes and think of that smile and peace overcomes me.

February brought more challenges to our life than I really thought I could bare. My brother, your Uncle Bobby, tragically passed away on February 21st , he was only 22 years old. I wish he could have gotten the opportunity to hold and kiss you, but I know he saw pictures of you and bragged about how absolutely gorgeous you were. This was the hardest time in my life. I wanted to stay in bed all day and sob, but I had Thing 1 and Thing 2 running around my house like a pack of freakin’ wildabeasts 24/7. And you know what the most annoying thing Jude and you did? You just refused to stop being so damn cute & happy all the damn time. It’s as if you knew I needed to borrow your happiness, so you both tried extra hard to remind me how blessed and lucky I was and you both refused to let me be depressed. Sad was acceptable, but depressed was not even an option with the amount of cuteness I had being rubbed in my face all day.

So, can I brag about your Daddy now? Because you are one lucky little girl. He loves you almost as much as I do, okay maybe the same, and he has cherished you since the moment you arrived. He constantly works hard to support all of us and pay for all those stupid bows. He changes your diaper, snuggles you, sings to you, praises you, dressed you up and brags about you incessantly. I’m not willing to accept the possibility of you being a Daddy’s girl yet, but if I was you, I don’t know that I could help but be one. With how awesome and amazing I am, I know it’s hard to believe…but your Dad is the most amazing man I have ever met. He cherishes us like Daddies should, he is so much more calm, compassionate, open-minded and hard working than I could ever dream of being. The day we got married was the happiest day of my life, because it lead to the birth of Jude and then you. My biggest prayer for you is that one day you find someone as incredible as your Daddy, it will be hard, but you are much better looking than your Mama already, so I don’t worry too much.

Despite the challenges, it has been the best year of my life. Each day I spend with Jude and you is not always easy, but its always filled with love and happiness. Daddy and I may not always be able to afford all those stupid bows, but we will always be with you in heart and mind. Nearly every decision in our lives is based on the well being and happiness of you and your brother, and we wouldn’t trade it for the world.

A few weeks ago, I guess you decided you were done with breastfeeding, because no matter how many times I’d try to get you to nurse, you just wanted to be independent, run around and watch The Jude Show some more. I tried not to take it personally, but it was the first time in your life I felt like you needed me just a little bit less. It’s not a good feeling, but part of being a good Mom is allowing you to be who and what you want to be, so I will always try to support your choices, even if it means I don’t get to burn those extra 500 calories a day.

Please know that you can do anything you put your mind to. You are the best kind of girl…completely gorgeous, sweet, independent, hilarious and 110% completely fearless. Thank you for blessing our lives in every way. We love you so much more than I could ever put into words, but I hope this helps. Happy first Birthday Baby Goo!!!

Love you to the moon and back,

Mama

Ruby Mae’s First Year Slideshow

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Ruby’s 4 Month Checkup

1 Nov

Photo by Vida Mia Photography

Today was Ruby’s 4th month checkup. She is now 11lbs, 4oz and 24 inches long. For her age that puts her in the 25th percentile for weight, not sure about her percentile for height but the Doctor said she is tall and skinny for her age and if she is lucky, she will stay that way her whole life. Ruby is hitting all of her milestones, babbling, rolling over both ways, grabbing/holding toys. We were anxious about her shots but she took them like the little princess she is, only cried for 30 seconds or less and was fine as soon as Mama was holding her.

I have so much I want to share from Jude’s birthday/Halloween, I’m going to try and get on that soon 🙂 Plus, we just took family portraits on Sunday and I can’t wait to share all of them with you when they are done. We got a 4 picture preview and the one posted above was a part of that. The cuteness KILLS ME DEAD.

Happy 4 Months Ruby Mae

23 Oct

Hi.

It has been too long since I’ve had time to do anything with two hands besides breastfeed, change diapers, fold laundry, cook, clean or drive. But here I am, on a real computer with two free hands (Thanks to Jude’s exhaustion and Michael playing with Ru).

I can’t believe it has been four months since Ruby was born but on the other hand, I can’t imagine our family without her. Things have been….busy. I seriously feel like having one child was like being on vacation compared to this. Having two babies at the neediest stages of life, what was I thinking? Not that I would have it any other way, but I was kidding myself before trying to imagine how difficult it would be. It’s like running a marathon with no finish line. It’s also more intense this time around because I am breastfeeding, which requires SO MUCH MORE work, dedication, patience, planning and sleep deprivation. It is so unbelievably worth it to me though, I love it. It forces me to take time for just Ruby and I to bond. I really wish I would have been able to experience nursing Jude, but I’m glad he was still able to receive breast-milk in a bottle.

Jude’s interest in Ruby seems to increase by the week. The more Ruby is able to talk, wiggle and interact with him, the more he loves her. We have to be careful though, because sometimes he is a little too excited to play with his sister. He is doing so much better on the jealousy front, but there are still times when I am nursing Ruby that he decides is the perfect time to try and jump on my lap. It makes me feel so bad to try and juggle that time between the two of them, but I know it is just a phase.

Ruby sleeps okay at night. She wakes up 2-3 times (for about 30 minutes), but at least when she is done nursing, she usually goes right back to sleep. I’m not sure what her stats are yet because her next doctor’s appointment isn’t until November 1st. I look forward to it. I don’t worry about her eating because that is all this girl still likes to do it seems 🙂 She began talking and making beautiful little cooing noises and squeals about a month ago. I haven’t gotten a “real” giggle or laugh out of her yet, but she is the happiest lil baby I’ve ever seen.  Everywhere we go people stop us to tell us how beautiful she is, how cute and tiny she is. I can’t help but agree. Her demeanor is so delicate and lovely, soft and sweet. I joke that after having such an energetic child like Jude, I’m deserving of an “easy baby”. Ruby is so fascinated by Jude’s energy and laughter, her face lights up watching him.

No matter how tired or stressed I get, I can’t help but feel like the luckiest Mama in the whole world. Because I am.

Earlier today:

Besties:

Ruby’s 2 Month Stats

29 Aug

Ruby had her 2 Month checkup today! She is still tiny- weighing in at 9lbs 4oz (What Michael weighed when he was born). I was feeling pretty bummed because I was worried the Dr would be upset about her weight, but she actually said she was in the 15-25th percentile and not worried. I asked the Dr if Ruby only gaining 3-4oz a week is something we should be concerned about and she said as long as she is gaining and developing normally there is nothing to worry about. Babygirl is now 23 inches long, she has very long legs. The Dr was very impressed with Ruby’s strength! She can hold her head up pretty well and when she is on her tummy can do a ‘lil baby push up move that is so cute. She also is trying very hard to roll over already. The Dr kept saying, “That’s 4 month stuff!” For something so little she packs a lot of energy! It is so adorable watching her smile now and listening to her make noises. I pretty much cry almost every time she starts cooing at me. I know, I know…but I can’t help it!

‘Lil baby pushup (iPhones need flash).

Kisses.

At her appointment 🙂

Oh!! Also? We have been hard at work on Ruby’s nursery. At first we were planning to do a shared room for the kids, but we changed our minds. They are different people and deserve their own space. I can’t wait to share it with you guys when we are done!!

Ruby Mae is 8 Weeks

18 Aug

Little Sister

17 Aug

This onesie Ruby is wearing (below) is more important to me than any of the others. After Michael and I found out we were having a daughter, we rushed to the store(s) to buy something for her. We found this at Babies R Us and have looked forward to seeing her in it ever since. We have this crappy cell phone picture (that I adore) of Jude holding this onesie up, smiling so big. It was taken on Valentines Day, when we met with our families to share our gender revealing news. It blows my mind still, that she is here. Healthy, gorgeous and happy. That we have a daughter. That Jude has a sister. It’s just so incredible. I worried so much before she was born, that I would never be able to love her as much as I adore Jude. Somehow, (just like all the experienced Mamas in my life assured me) your heart just grows.

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Ruby is 7 Weeks Young!

11 Aug

7 weeks along and she already seems to sleep better than her brother. It’s so interesting how different these two are already. Jude was wide awake from the get go, independent, wiggly and hyper! Ruby seems so sweet, calm and cuddly. Since we are pretty sure we won’t be having anymore children, it’s amazing having a tiny little cuddlebug. It does make me emotional to think this will be the last squishy teeny baby we will ever have! So I’m trying to focus on all the special moments we get to share. She has been sleeping from about 9-10 until 3-4 and then eats for about 30ish minutes then back to sleep until 7, eats again and then sleeps until 9. I’m not sure if it will last, but I will take it! Jude is doing so much better adjusting to his sibling. He just loves giving Ruby kisses, bringing her paci, patting her head and trying to share his snacks with her. Every morning Michael gets up, changes Jude’s diaper and brings him into our bed. Jude comes in with a loud, “Hiiiii!” and runs over to give sissy big kisses with a loud, “Muuuahhhhh!”. It’s the best way to start your day, I highly recommend it.

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Ruby Mae’s Birth Video

5 Aug

Only took me 6 weeks

If you missed it, here is Ruby’s Birth Story.

Summertime Snapshots

18 Jul

A glimpse of what the past week or so has looked like 🙂

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Jude & Lola playing at Ari’s birthday party (photos by Aunt Nicole)

We took Miss Ruby to the Doctors office again today to check her weight, she is doing fabulous! She gained 6oz this week putting her at 7lbs & 12oz, still tiny but growing everyday 🙂 Jude has an appointment on Friday and I am looking forward to seeing how much he has grown since his last appointment!

Everyone is doing well here. The “adjusting” is getting easier everyday. I am soaking in all the baby snuggles I can get. Also, exhausted.

Hope everyone is having a wonderful week.

Ruby’s Two Week Checkup

11 Jul

This morning was Ruby’s “Two Week” checkup at the Pediatrician (even though she is 2 weeks, 4 days).

The Pediatrician said she looked great and all of her jaundice was completely gone!! She weighed 7lbs & 6oz (up 3oz from last week) and was 21 inches long! I was pretty discouraged she hadn’t gotten back up to her birth weight yet (7lbs & 11oz). We will be taking her again next Monday to be weighed again and track her progress. That is another thing that is much different about exclusively breastfeeding, I second guess myself constantly. I worry she isn’t eating enough or that I am doing something wrong. I keep trying to remind myself “any weight gain is good” and she has “lots of wet diapers”. The Doctor didn’t seem concerned and was very encouraging which made us feel somewhat relieved. All in all she is happy and cute as can be and LOVES to cuddle, we just adore her!! Jude has been so into giving her kisses today and patting her head, totally kills me with cuteness.

Here are some more photos of our little ladybug (taken at Target) 🙂