Monday, December 29, 2014

8 Months

I hope that everyone had a lovely Christmas! :) We had a busy week aaaaand Elias and I got sick, but we really enjoyed ourselves anyway. Elias didn't really understand at all this year, and he's kind of afraid of the sound of ripping wrapping paper. Little weirdo. lol. But it was still fun for Ryan and I to get his stocking together and open gifts with him Christmas morning. :) Very special. 

I don't feel like we had any big milestones to speak of during month 8. He's still not crawling. Seems pretty content to roll around and get where he wants to go that way. He's so active right now and I feel like it's increasing every day. Can't imagine what it will be like when he is actually crawling. haha! He learned how to clap his hands when we say yay and daddy is working on high fives. :) We're trying to be more intentional about letting him try more solids. He likes tasting the food that we're eating. He really enjoys playing with the other babies and toys in the nursery at church on Sundays. I love that he's a friendly little guy, and hasn't had any separation anxiety yet. He just loves to be with other people, and doesn't really care who it is. :) 

That's about it! Here are some pictures of month 8 with our goober boy! :)

So handsome! I love that his hair is getting so long!
Trying to stay warm during a cold night out for dinner. :)
Hanging out with his cousin/BFF Derek. <3
Enjoying some beans and guac at a local Mexican restaurant. Looks like he took a selfie. haha. 
Happy morning boy! :)
Crazy hair during bathtime. :)
Family love!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

And then there were 4 :)

It was November 1st. A totally normal Saturday. We slept in, took our time getting ready, hung out with friends in the afternoon, and got together with family in the evening. But I was a week or so past my expected period. I've had the occasional long cycle here and there. But a whole week...? Before hitting the sack, Ryan told me to just take a pregnancy test so that we could push any crazy ideas out of our minds and carry on. I had an extra test lurking around under the sink from the embryo transfer that we did last December. So I peed on it. Super nonchalant. We stood at our bathroom sink together and stared down at that pee stick, toothbrushes in hand, toothpaste foaming up our mouths. And the most shocking and amazing word popped up - "Pregnant."
My immediate response was denial. lol. 4 1/2 years since we started trying, multiple embryo transfers, and the two times I DID get pregnant, I miscarried. That first week after the pregnancy test, I was just waiting to start bleeding. But I didn't. On the contrary, I started feeling all of the things that I had felt with the previous pregnancy. Fatigue, slight dull ache in my lower abdomen, occasional nausea, and food aversions. Only this time, I had the confidence that it was my body doing it, not meds. :) Both miscarriages had happened in week 6, so getting to week 7 was another confidence booster. And at week 8, we had our first OBGYN appointment. I was pretty nervous about doing the ultrasound at this appointment. You may recall that my ultrasound for the last pregnancy resulted in a blank screen - no baby. But to our great relief and joy, we saw a little gummy-bear-shaped body in my uterus and a nice strong heartbeat. My doctor said that everything looked great, and that I could continue on like a normal pregnant woman - no injections, no special treatment. :)
So here we are! I am just over 9 weeks today, due July 5th of next year. Elias is our sunshine and our joy, and filled every longing and hope that we ever had about parenthood. Adoption was such a wonderful experience for us, and we thought that would be the only way we would pursue a second baby if/when that time came. But God has been faithful to give me what I did not plan for. lol. He must have chuckled when He tucked this little life in my body. He gave us a surprise adoption AND a surprise pregnancy the year that we had planned to be just "Ryan and Denay." Our little family is growing by God's grace and goodness and we could not be more thrilled. But we do have a long ways to go, and we're praying that the Lord keeps this baby safe and healthy inside of me. Thank you in advance for your prayers for Baby Miller #2! :)

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

7 months

Elias is 7 months old! Where has the time gone??? I think the biggest milestone this month is sitting. He still occasionally throws himself backwards for no apparent reason, but for the most part he is able to catch himself from tipping over. He has figured out a way to get from sitting to his belly, although it's not too graceful. He pretty much faceplants forward and then rolls from there. The method doesn't seem to bother him, so we just go with it. lol. And while sitting has been a big accomplishment, he still prefers to roam around the floor. He is getting very good at getting wherever he wants to go, except moving forward. He's using his hands and arms more to help him move around, but he still hasn't figured out how to use his legs. Fine by me! ;)

He has started experimenting with different sounds. We're starting to hear consonants in his usual jabber. Mostly "dada", even though he doesn't know what that means yet. :) He also started making clicking noises with his tongue. :)

His second tooth popped through his gums shortly after the first tooth appeared last month. He's proudly displayed both of them in the 7 month picture below. haha. :)

And that's pretty much it. I feel like a lot of what he is doing these days is just a more exaggerated version of what he was doing last month. More mobility, more sounds, more eating, more goobery-ness. haha. ;) Here are some photos from Elias' 7th month of life. 

First time at the beach! This was on a weekend trip to San Diego with friends.
Cruising around the San Diego Zoo. Elias slept for most of it, but Ryan and I had a great time! :)
First Halloween! We were a safari family. Elias was the cutest little lion ever. :)
Bath time fun! He looooooves the bath. Doesn't like to get out. :)
Big boy, sitting up on his own. I still put a pillow of some sort behind him in case he throws himself backward. :)
Sleepy traveler. We visited family up near San Francisco, so Elias went on his second set of flights and handled it like a champ. 
Cuddles with Daddy.
Our final post-placement meeting with our adoption agency. More to come on the finalization process soon. :)

Monday, November 3, 2014

Baby Must Haves - Months 4-6

Time for our second round of Baby Must Haves! :) The items mentioned in my first post still apply (you can find that post here). I'm still using all but one thing, which is the Rock n Play. Elias is really mobile now, and though he still seems content to lay in the Rock n Play, I'm nervous that he'll try to pull himself up and tip it over. So we slowly phased that out at right around 5 months. I think very highly of it though, and 5 months of daily and portable use was well worth the $50. ::thumbs up:: Anyway, without further ado, here are my favorite products for months 4-6. :)

Play Mat / Activity Gym - We used this earlier on too, but I feel like it became an essential item at 4-5 months. He started playing with the overhead objects, trying to roll over to reach other objects, and it gave him some fun color to look at and drool on during tummy time. Seriously kept him occupied all throughout the day. If he wasn't napping, he was playing on his play mat. (you can find them here)

Sleep Sack - Now that fall weather is finally hitting southern California, it's definitely cold enough to layer up at night. We switched to sleep sacks/wearable blankets once Elias started breaking out of his swaddles at 3-4 months. I used lighter cotton ones during the summer and recently switched over to fleece for the extra warmth. Can I just say, I wish I would have registered for a million of these. I think they're much more practical and I get much more use out of them than standard blankets for Elias. They keep him super cozy, he sleeps great in them, he's not kicking off a loose blanket at night, and he's not getting tangled up in anything in his sleep. And BONUS, look how adorable and snuggly he looks!! lol. I think of all the items mentioned in this post, sleep sacks are my favorite. (you can find them here)
Teething tablets - we've definitely had rough days of teething and sometimes it seems like Tylenol can't keep up with the pain. These teething tablets naturally sooth the gums on contact. They're great for quick relief while you're waiting for the pain meds to kick in. (you can find them here)

Sophie the Giraffe - this toy is worth the hype. It's made of a soft rubber material and the shape is so perfect for little hands. No matter how he grabs it, Elias can get a nice firm grip and easily fit it into his mouth. He's even started rubbing the round area with the ridges back and forth against his gums when he's teething. (you can find it here)

Sound machine - Elias slept pretty much anywhere without a problem during the first few months of life. He's such an active little guy now, that he needs a little help to drown out his surroundings. The sound machine that we use is a battery operated stuffed giraffe with 4 different sound settings and adjustable volume. It has a velcro loop so that it can easily be attached to a crib, carseat, or pack and play. The timer allows him just enough time fall asleep with white noise before shutting off. (you can find one here)
Well that's all I've got for ya! Hope it was helpful! :)

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

6 Months Old

Goober boy is half a year old! :) He is doing new things all the time and we really feel like each stage is even more fun than the one before. It just keeps getting better. :) Elias is 17 pounds of pure personality. lol. He enjoys laughing, being loud, and rolling around all over the living room. He is becoming a little active boy. He's just in a constant state of wiggling and moving around. :)

We finally had a tooth break through the surface on 10/15! You can see a glimpse of it in the 6 month picture below. :) His drooling has gone down a little but he is still rubbing his gums a lot. I have a feeling that a second tooth is not far behind.

He started showing an interest in what we were eating this month so we gave him his first taste of solid food about two weeks ago. I just mushed up a little piece of banana and added a smidge of water to liquify it a little bit for him. I think he was ok with the flavor, but he wasn't sure what to do with the texture. lol. Anyway I gave it a few days and tried again with the same response. I moved on to baby apple sauce next. I let him hold the spoon, stick it in his own mouth, chew on it. You know, just let him feel it out. He seemed to like that. And when I tried spoon feeding him again the next day, he actually tried to eat it. We're still in exploration mode. Not rushing to get him on baby food, just giving him the opportunity to try some new flavors. It's fun. :)

And last but surely not least, he started leaning in for kisses this past weekend. Ryan and I are in heaven with that. lol. It's so sweet! Anyway, that's it. Enjoy the pictures of month 6!

Getting ready for Elias' first flight and our first big family vacation. :)
He was a total trooper on the plane! He was all smiles playing with Daddy here.
Hanging out on the balcony at the hotel and watching the boats go by. :)
This is Elias with his aunts, uncle, and cousin. We had such a wonderful time with them. It was a big day for him even though he doesn't know it yet. :) We're blessed to be connected to such a loving family through adoption. 
He decided that he's a stomach sleeper this month. It made me nervous at first, but I've gotten used to it. :) He's always readjusting and moving around in his sleep now. :)
First taste of banana. Kind of unsure about it. lol
Cuddles and smiles with big cousin Brookie. I love this picture so much! :)
Kisses for Daddy!
My happy boy. He brings us so much joy! <3

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Tips for Traveling with a Baby

I'm so glad I finally got this vlog done! haha. :) We went on our first big family vacation a few weeks ago and it was a very successful trip. We not only had a great time, but really felt like we adequately prepared for traveling with a baby. The video below is just a recap of our learnings. Hope this is helpful to anyone looking to travel soon! :)

I realized after I uploaded that my camera cut out a section that I had filmed about a carseat check bag. Boo. Anyway, this one came in super handy as Ryan carried it through the airport, and the bright color made it easy to spot at baggage claim -

Other products mentioned:
JuJuBe BFF diaper bag (these bags are pretty pricey. I scored on a used one on eBay)

Friday, September 26, 2014

5 months old

I'm a little behind on posting Elias' 5 month update. We have been on vacation and I had the best of intentions to get this posted while we were away but it just didn't happen. Side note, traveling with our baby boy went wonderfully, and I will do a post on all of my learnings in the coming weeks. :) Ok, on to Elias - that 15 pound bundle of cuteness! :)

So much development happening these days! The biggest physical accomplishment this month has definitely been movement. Shortly after passing the 4 month mark, I started getting more intentional about giving him time on his tummy. He could only do a few minutes at a time before he got frustrated. A few weeks later, he is not only spending lots of time on his tummy, but he's gotten so good at rolling over, and has actually started to move himself in specific directions as he wants. It's so fun to watch! He's using hands a lot more now too. He reaches out for toys, touches our faces, holds his hands out to look at them, and seems to enjoy grasping at different textures. 

From a character standpoint...well he's just a cute little goober. ;) The most recent thing is fake laughing. He kinda smiles and chuckles to himself or at us, just to hear himself. It's so funny. lol. Oh, and on the flip side, he started to let us know when we're making him upset. He's a super happy and easy going baby, but we have seen a few moments of a temper this month.  He is also starting to establish preferences. Like he has a couple favorite toys now, he likes to fall asleep on his side, he occasionally has a hard time with unfamiliar faces. 

Those are the main things! Here are a few highlight pictures of month 5. :)

Trying to get used to spending time on his tummy. He's not too excited about it. lol
Elias thinks that the little boy in the mirror is so cool. ;)
Snuggles with Daddy!
Already more comfortable on the floor after just a week or two consistent tummy time.
We're kinda crazy about each other. ;)
Sticking close to mom during a rough day of teething. 
This is the first time I realized that Elias is officially mobile and I can't just leave him unsupervised. lol. He had rolled to the other side of his playmat, reached under the bed and pulled out the electrical cords out to play with. ::hands over face::
Rolled to the other side of his crib to play with his stuffed animals. This was a much more enjoyable scene to walk in on than the one above. lol. There are definitely positive aspects to his mobility. :)
We're enjoying every single minute with our goober boy!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

4 Months Old

Our boy is 4 months old! :) I feel like Elias has grown so much over the last month. At 14.4 pounds, we're having to readjust how I hold him in the baby carrier because he's just too heavy for some of the positions that we started with. He's also strong enough to break out of the swaddle, not matter how nicely I wrap him in it. :) But beyond his size, he's growing in his motor skills and overall awareness as well. He's always been pretty alert, but now he is able to follow my voice or Ryan's voice if he hears us, look for us if someone else is holding him, watch us as we leave his room for nap time, etc. Along with that alertness comes the ability to get bored. haha. He gets restless if we leave him in the same spot or with the same toy for too long. Speaking of toys, he is getting much better at holding objects and pulling them to his mouth. And he really chomps down on whatever goes in there. I know because it often ends up being my knuckle. ;) We haven't seen any teeth break the surface of his gums yet, but they're definitely in the works. 

Elias loves being active and seeing activity. If he is laying down, he's kicking his legs, waving his arms, and usually talking up a storm. He prefers to stand or sit up as much as possible though. I've been setting his Bumbo seat up on the counter so that he can watch me do dishes or put dinner together. I'll also wear him as I'm taking care of stuff around the house and he just looks around and takes it all in. :) It's fun. The only down side is that because he likes watching everything, he is more easily distracted now. I have a harder time getting him to finish his bottle if there is a lot going on around him, and he can't just fall asleep anywhere anymore. I've got to close off the world for him a little bit in order for him to relax enough to fall asleep. :)

hmm...I think that's about it. Here are some pictures from month 4! :)
Standing up on those gorgeously chubby little legs of his. 
Doing some afternoon reading with mom. 
Chomp, chomp, chomp!
Being crazy with cousin/BFF Derek. :)

Enjoying some pool time in Palm Springs.
Elias' first hotel stay! He liked looking at the room service menu with daddy. ;)
Doing some chores with mom.
Little escape artist - three limbs out of the swaddle! haha
Hanging out at the park with his lady friends. ;) I love that we know so many babies his age!
He's such a happy boy. :)