Lilypie Second Birthday tickers

Lilypie Second Birthday tickers

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


This post is dedicated to my cat, Jersey. We have had both cats, Josie and Jersey, for 4 years. I got them for Allan for his birthday the year we were married. Here are a few pictures of them our first Christmas with them. Josie found the Christmas tree right away that year and we still have to keep her out of it every year. Jersey is bigger now, but she still has the same annoyed look on her face all the time. I think she is disappointed that she doesn't have cooler owners.

I think this picture is just adorable. They used to play with each other until they were both exhausted and would fall asleep in the same position.
Here is a quick story about Jersey. When we got her she was tiny. We couldn't take her home for a few weeks because she was too small to be adopted. I think she weighed 2 pounds when we took her home. So I was always worried about her since she was so small. One night soon after we adopted her Allan was out playing poker and I was home with the cats when Jersey started choking. She was coughing and her tounge was hanging out of her mouth and she was gasping for air. I was freaking out. Then all of a sudden she threw up a giant rubber band. She was fine after that. The following is a reenactment of something that happened last week. To the right is a shoelace. Just a simple shoelace, right?

We came home from work the next day and the shoelace looked like this. Perfectly in a straight line...except for squiggles at the end next to a puddle of vomit (I left that out of the reenactment). I cleaned the vomit and put the shoelace back in the shoebox it came in. I don't know why I didn't just throw it away.
The next day it was out of the box again and on the bathroom floor. This time I got lazy and ignored it. We got home late and instead of moving it we both just stepped over it....not that getting home late is any excuse for not picking up and throwing away a shoelace.

Because of our laziness, this is what we found in the morning. (Again, I didn't think it was necessary to actually put the shoelace in the toilet in the reenactment. And, by the way, we threw away the 1st shoelace. The one used in this reenactment was the other one). It seems with those cats that everything always ends up in the toilet or in their water bowl. They always amaze me with their craziness. This time I thought I should document it.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas preparations

I can't believe Cayden's first Christmas is only 3 days away! It doesn't seem possible that it is here already. We've been so busy with I don't know what that we aren't really prepared at all. Christmas shopping is almost done and gifts are wrapped, but the house is a mess, we didn't send out (or even attempt to make) Christmas cards, I haven't made a single cookie...but I did make several batches of different types of bark that was much easier to make and was delicious, but just not the same!...and I just feel like everything is rushed. Is that how parenthood will be forever? I'm not complaining at all; things are wonderful and I soooo love my life, I just wish there was more time to enjoy it. Maybe I just need to make more time.

Allan has been having me open a present each night for the past 2 nights. The first one was from Cayden. I can't even talk about it without crying! I'm such a wimp! Allan reenacted that commercial with the dad giving the mom a present at 2am while the mom was up with their little baby, saying he couldn't wait to celebrate their "first Christmas as a family". Ahhh....I love it. Anyway, it's a heart shaped necklace with a quote about being a mother. My boys are so sweet! This is going to be a very special Christmas for us!

Yesterday my parents picked Cayden up from my job to spend the day with him. They did some shopping together then Allan and I met up with them when we got off work so Cayden could meet Santa. Cayden had actually already met Santa last week in the bakery at Publix in the Villages, but it wasn't quite the same. The mall we went to is an outside mall and it was freezing! The little guy was all wrapped up and sleeping in the Baby Bjorn and Allan woke him up when it was his turn to sit on the big guy's lap. Cayden wasn't happy at all to be woken up and uncovered and thrown into a cold handed stranger's lap, then having all these people making rediculous faces at him and clapping and swinging things around to try to make him smile. He just wasn't having it! I think Santa had had enough too. Hopefully he won't hold it against Cayden.

Today is my last day at work before Christmas, and one of 4 days left of having Cayden at work with me. Everything is set for him to start school January 4th. Tomorrow me, Allan, and Cayden will celebrate Christmas together, then Thursday we head up to Ocala. So since I likely won't be writing again before then, Merry Christmas!!!

Friday, November 20, 2009


Lately it has gotten harder and harder to work with Cayden. He is such a good baby and for the first month of having him with me he was happy being held and playing on his play mat all day. But now that he's getting older he gets bored easily. He wants to learn! I just don't have the time to stimulate him the way he needs it. He deserves so much more than I can give him at work. I'd been trying to ignore it because I love having him with me and don't want to think about him spending his days with someone else. But I keep getting frustrated when he cries all day and it makes my feel incredibly guilty. I just can't give what he wants and needs.

I'd looked into a liscensed home daycare facility near Allan's job that seemed great. It's structured ans the teacher is really nice and caring. Then my mom suggested looking into a Montessori school. Allan said he liked that idea too because it is well known and based on a certain theory so we'd know exactly what they would be doing with Cayden. We found an accredited school that takes infants at 10 weeks. I toured it today and it was incredible. I was blown away by the things they were teaching kids. One of the infant teachers played with Cayden for a few minutes and asked if I wanted to leave him there while I finished the tour and talked with the director. She managed to incorporate him into the activity she was doing with the other infants and toddlers. When I went into the director's office she turned the TV on and explained that each classroom has cameras so that parents can come to watch what their children are doing without disrupting the class. I watched as the teacher showed Cayden different colored blocks and had his full attention. It sounds so simple, but it's more than I can do with him when I'm at work. He smiled and laughed as she waved the blocks in front of his face. Unfortunately, the cameras aren't available by the internet, but it was nice to know that the director and the other staff can monitor the classes. When we went into the older children's classes it seemed like a joke. I could not believe the things those kids were learning so young! The director said that all of the kids are reading by age 4, most of them start around age 3. They also start teaching the kids Spanish and ASL around age 1. I can't get over it.

So I keep crying about it. Even when I was talking with the director about the school I began crying. It is so hard to imagine being without Cayden every day. What if he says his first word at school? Or takes his first steps? He should do those things with me and Allan! And I don't like thinking about someone else bonding with him as they feed him or change his diapers or put him down for naps. Or smiling at someone else when he wakes up from a nap. I can't stand it! But I have to do what's best for him, right? I have to keep reminding myself of that.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

A long one...

I have a lot to get caught up on!!! I think the first big thing I missed was writing about our trip to Jacksonville to see our friends Megan and Patrick and their 5 month old son, Evan. Usually we head up there for the big FL/GA game and spend the weekend tailgating and showing our Gator spirit. This year was a little different, due to Cayden not being quite ready to tailgate. I spent game day with Cayden, Megan, and Evan, while Allan headed off to the game with Patrick and a bunch of other guys (and Ami, who I really missed spending the weekend with!). I had a really great relaxing day with Megan and the babies. We played with them all day, went to the park, watched the game, and dressed them up since it also happened to be Halloween. They were adorable! Evan was MUCH happier in his alligator costume than Cayden was in his monkey costume. It didn't help that I pulled his hair while putting the head piece on, or that it was way too big and he couldn't see. At one point he was crying and wouldn't stop and Evan started crying too. Megan and I didn't know what to do so we laughed at them and made a video. We did know what to do...but it was too cute to make it stop right away!

That was Cayden's first overnight trip, which was a big deal to me even without all the excitement of spending time with Megan, the Fl/Ga game, and playing with Cayden and Evan. I was worried about what it would be like, but Cayden did great! Except for not sleeping during the day. He was just too excited about meeting his first friend! He and Evan were really cute together. It is amazing how much of a difference 3 months can make. Evan can do so many things that Cayden doesn't seem like he will ever be able to do! But Evan did teach Cayden how to drool. Megan said it's a phase, but Cayden never did that before! It's not a bad thing at all. I find it absolutely adorable!

This past weekend was another big weekend for Cayden. Lee Lee came to see him Thursday and we went to The Pier in St. Pete on Friday. It was Cayden's first trip to see the Bay, well other than his walk on Bayshore. His first special trip. He slept through most of it, but he did like the huge fishtank inside the Pier and liked being outside. He also liked sitting in Vinoy Park and looking around. Friday night was Cayden's first time spending the night at Nonni and Grandpa's house. He slept from 11pm until 5am! I was shocked!!! I kept waking up expecting him to wake up too but he didn't. So I kept checking to make sure he was breathing and moving and then I went back to sleep. It was so nice to be able to get so much sleep (even though I kept waking up).

Saturday my mom threw Cayden a party. We dressed him up in a super cute outfit, which ended up being way too hot for him, but he was such a cute little man! For the most part he did really well. He was very happy to see his friend Evan again. I was nervous about him getting overstimulated by so many people being there, but he let everyone hold him who wanted to and he only cried a little because of his tummy ache and being overtired. And he threw up all over Mrs. Jacobowitz twice. Other than that he was a party man, just like his daddy! He got a bunch of great gifts, including the first toy that he has ever shown a preference for- his Gloworm! He LOVES it! We showed it to him when we got home and his face light up just like the Gloworm's face. Cayden followed the face with his eyes and got sad when it stopped glowing. I can't wait until he is older and can hug it. Maybe this will be the toy that has to go everywhere, like my blanky did, or like Trent's puppy. He is really really cute with the Gloworm. And I kinda think they look alike: big blue eyes, brown hair, an oversized head, and a round adorable face. Saturday night after the party we went to spend the night with Grandma Bear and Oma. Again, Cayden slept from about 10pm until 4 or 5am. I really got my hopes up that it would didn't. He's back to sleeping 4 hours at a time. I guess I can't complain, though! It could be worse! Eventually he will sleep through the night every night!

Sunday Cayden and I went to Gainesville to see Eddie, Crystal, and Ella. Then my parents, Aunt Patty, Aunt Nina, Uncle Vince, and Lee Lee joined us and we went to the museum. Again, Cayden did great! He cried because of his belly ache again, but once he stopped hurting he had a great time. Aunt Nina showed him all the exhibits and he really liked the different lighting in each room. Then he got sleepy and Aunt Patty rocked him to sleep. We had so much fun. I wish we could see everyone more often.

Here's an update on likes and dislikes:
Likes: Fans, Gloworm, his pacifier (those are his 3 best friends!),diaper changes (nakedness), bathtime, being smiled at, being outside, being bounced or rocked, grabbing necklaces, interesting lights, watching his mobile, starting his day at 5am

Dislikes: Allan's whiskers, daytime naps, tummy aches, doo doo in the diaper, waking up hungry, losing his pacifier, Gloworm's face turning off, stationary fans, tummy time, not being able to see what he wants to look at, being held differently than he wants to be held, sometimes he gets angry when he gets fed from a bottle

Thursday, October 29, 2009

New toys and a big mess!

Cayden goes to work with me every day. I love it! It has been working out really well too- hopefully my co-workers won't get sick of helping me with him! He is in my office with me all day until I have a client or a group and luckily the women I work with have all been willing to play with him until I'm done. It is actually easier than being at home with him because I have so much help. Until yesterday he had his carseat (which is super comfy and rocks), a bouncy seat, and a blanket. He seemed content, but I know it got boring for him. I found a jump rope in my office and tied it from my desk to a chair and hung toys from it, but I just thought he deserved better. So yesterday I bought a play mat that has two arches- one for toys that he can look at and play with and the other that has a ball for him to kick. It also has toys on the mat for tummy time. AND it folds into a tunnel for when he gets older. I also got him a mirror with more toys on it and it has speakers for his iPod. He had so much fun yesterday! Here are some pictures. Especially take note of the ones where his feet and the ball are blurry. He LOVEd kicking the ball.

This morning we had his third emergency where I was unprepared. Today definitely topped off the other two incidents by far. The other two times I just didn't have his diaper bag with me. Today I had the bag and plenty of diapers, but his mess went far beyond needing diapers. He needed new clothes and a bath. Over the weekend I took out all of the clothes in the bag because they were all NB clothes, but I never replaced them. On the way to work this morning I saw him making faces and knew what he was doing. I was happy that he wasn't crying about it like he usually does so I started cheering for him! Then he did start crying and I soon saw why. His doo doo was everywhere!!! All out of the sides of his diaper, all over his leg and foot, up his back, and about to smother the carseat. That was when I remembered taking out his clothes and not replacing them. Allan was saying, "Shame on you, Gwen! Shame!" and he had every right to. Oh, and I didn't have wipes either. So when we got to Coke we took off his clothes and used a beach towel to clean him up and then I put a diaper on him and hurried to Target. His clothes may have been salvageable, but I knew they would be stained unless I handwashed them first, which I'm just not ready to do quite yet. And even if I did wash them I would need baby detergent anyway, so I decided to just buy new clothes. Maybe NOW I'll learn to always be more prepared.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

2 Months Old!!!

Today Cayden is 2 months old! I'm actually writing this the 27th- something happened with our internet last night when I tried posting this. Luckily it saved the pictures. He had his 2 month appointment last week. I was nervous! With the problems we had with him gaining weight I had worries about if he'd gained enough (even though I can tell from looking at him and carrying him that he's gotten huge!) and of course Allan and I were both scared of the vaccines. First the nurse weighed and measured him. He weighed 10lbs 12oz (still less than Eddie was when he was born, I think!) ! So he's in the 30th percentile, just as he was when he was born. And the nurse measured him at 22.75 inches, which puts him in the 50th percentile, just like when he was born. I love that he has stayed at the same proportions. When the nurse left the room we measured him ourselves. He was moving so much on the table I think she just gave up and took a guess, but we could tell his back was curved when she took the measurements. We measured right at 24 inches. Two feet long doesn't sound like much, but looking at him he looks so big to us! She asked if he's holding his head up, if he can follow us with his eyes, and if he turns his head when he hears something. He is doing all those things, so he's meeting all the milestones! Of course, we think he's excelling at being a 2 month old. Then it was time for the vaccines. First he had to take one orally out of a syringe. He took it like a champ. Then she gave him a shot in the left thigh and his eyes got real big. Then she went for the right thigh. He face turned red and then purple, he stuck out his bottom lip, and let out two huge screams. And then he was over it! I picked him up and hugged him...but that was more to make me feel better since he obviously didn't need it. Then the doctor came in and checked him out and said he's doing great! But we already knew that. Below are some pictures we took last night.

P.S. he may not look like he loves me, but he does.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Cayden's first cold day

Last night Cayden relapsed. He went to sleep on his own at first...well....he fell alseep watching TV with Allan and then stayed asleep when I moved him. Then he woke up at 2am hungry so I took care of him and changed his diaper but then he wouldn't go back to sleep! He would close his eyes and look sleepy and as soon as I put him in the crib he would wake up and either cry or coo. The cooing and playing was SO cute, but I had to tell him "Not now, buddy! It's sleeping time!". He didn't listen, though. Maybe he was too excited about the Yankee's win last night and knowing that today he gets to watch the Gators win again and help me put up Halloween decorations AND he gets to see Nonni, Grandpa, Oma, and Grandma Bear! It's a big day! After an hour of unsuccessfully putting him to sleep I asked Allan to come help me and he wasn't successful either so we gave up and took him to our bed. Cayden fell asleep right away! I know it's rewarding a bad habit, but I can't help but feel good that he likes to be with us.

This morning it was cold- 62! Cayden and I went for our run and I had to bundle him up. Here is a picture:

He had a blanket wrapped around him too. He wasn't a fan of the hat, but once we started moving he fell asleep and forgot about it.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


I figured out how to add pictures. Here are some that I took today. Cayden had a really happy day today.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Sleeping and Smiling and Talking

I am so fascinated by how fast Cayden is growing and changing! He is really long now. I don't know exactly how long, but definitely getting longer- he fits into 3 month old clothes now, but newborn diapers still fit. So that tells me he is getting longer but not chubbier. Last night he wore monkey pajamas that I'm pretty sure Auntie Crystal and Uncle Eddie bought him. It is adorable. He wore it one of his first nights home from the hospital. Last night was probably the last night he'll be able to fit into it! It still fit, but he could barely straighten his legs and the sleeves were a little short. Also, I've been putting him sideways in his crib so I can stand over him and look at him full length when he's sleeping. But now his legs are about to touch the side of the crib, so he'll have to start sleeping the normal way. And I feel like I'm holding him differently now. I have to use both arms to cuddle with him unless his head is on my shoulder.

Not only is he growing a lot, but he's starting to reach all those famous milestones! Last night I decided to try putting him into his crib while he was still awake and see what happens. He stared at me for a while and then his eyelids got heavy, he started breathing loudly, and he fell asleep. If I made any noise or tried to walk away he woke up and started crying, so I had to pick him up to calm him, but then put him down again before he fell asleep. It only took 20 minutes until he was asleep and stayed that way. He woke up 5 hours later so after feeding him I did the same thing...I've been really bad about letting him fall asleep while nursing and wasn't expecting him to go to sleep on his own so quickly! Again, it took probably 20-30 minutes of him falling asleep and waking up crying before he fell asleep all on his own.

Cayden smiles all the time now! It still might be reflexes or him just building the smiling muscles, but it definitely looks like he is focused on something that makes him smile. He looks away then looks back at the same thing and smiles again. I took a super cute picture of him smiling, but I haven't learned how to post pictures yet! I'll add it when I figure out how.

He started cooing on Monday. He was in my co-worker Chenel's office while I was bringing a client into my office and I heard him start making these adorable noises and Chenel started laughing. It seemed like the more she laughed and talked back to him the more cute little noises he made. Now he does it regularly throughout the day. So adorable!

He really is an amazing baby! All moms say that about their babies, I guess. But he is definitely a good one! Lately he's been crying a lot...A LOT and we couldn't figure out what was wrong. Is growing pains a real thing? It's obvious by his appetite that he's going through a growth spurt. I also bought him those simethicone drops to see if that would help. Yesterday and today he has been totally calm! I've gotten SO much work done today and he has gone between taking naps and waking up and playing in what seems like even cycles. Just giong off of these 2 days he's becoming more predictable and easier to understand. He is still demanding as ever...screaming until his face turns purple when he wants to be held differently or have his pacifier put in his mouth. Even if this calmness is just an accident and tomorrow he goes back to make us question colic,he's still growing up too fast. I'm enjoying watching him mature to becoming less and less helpless.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Poor Allan!

Cayden has gotten into the habit of waking up at 4:30am and seeming ready to start his day. Of course, neither Allan nor I are anywhere near ready to be up at that time! We've been alternating feeding times: I feed him and then the next time he's up Allan give him a bottle. So the nighttime routine has been to feed Cayden, bathe him, and put him to bed. Then Allan and I go to bed. Then a few hours later Cayden wakes up and it has just been that I either hear him first and go to him or Allan wakes me up to say Cayden is hungry. So I go to his room and it takes about 30-45 minutes to nurse Cayden, change his diaper, and rock him back to sleep. Then a few hours later he wakes up again hungry so Allan wakes up and goes to take care of him, then comes back to bed shortly before my alarm goes off. Allan usually has Cayden with him, saying that Cayden refused to go back to sleep by himself. They lay in our bed together while I get ready for work, then I get Cayden changed, fed, and dressed while Allan gets ready. It works out wonderfully for me...but not so great for tired Allan. I can't tell if it is that Cayden doesn't get sleepy from the bottle like he does breastfeeding or if it is that he's already learned that Daddy plays with him so he wakes up to play, or if he is just a super early riser. I guess we should try switching up the times so that Allan gets the middle of the night feeding time and I get the early morning one.

So on the positive side, Cayden LOVES his crib. He likes the mobile, he likes all the free space, he likes looking at his walls, and listening to music. He is sleeping so much better. And our monitor is so powerful that I can hear him breathing even better then when he was sleeping in the same room with us. I LOVE hearing him breathe. He hums a little as he exhales and then inhales with such a sweet sounding little baby breath. It is making me want to not work today and just cuddle up with him forever!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Allan's first full day alone....

Allan recently remembered that he is able to take two work from home days every month. Today was his first! So I'm at work right now amazed at how focused I've been all is probably the first time ever that I crossed off everything on my to do list! I'm done with everything and still have an hour left to be at work! Since Cayden's been born I learned that I have to do things very quickly to be able to finish them.

So Allan is at home with Cayden. Now that I think of it, this post is actually pretty mean and once Allan reads it I'll probably be in trouble. I'm definitely excited for him to be able to spend so much time alone with Cayden- I've been afraid of turning Cayden into a momma's boy (not that there is anything wrong with that) but today they get to bond. But...I'm also secretly hoping Allan will see how hard it is to get things done with the baby and he will see me for the true superwoman that I am.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Our New Project

I (Gwen) decided in the middle of the night last night to create a website for Cayden. I'd been wanting to create one for several weeks, but was trying to find the "right" service to use. Last night while Cayden was up I needed something to do right then to help keep me up too. This seemed perfect! So the title of this entry is "Our New Project", but really it will be mine. Allan may add pictures or videos from time to time, but the writing will probably be all me. I will try to only write about things that people other than me might find interesting! Allan is much more entertaining...but I will do my best to keep the interest of our friends and family.

Cayden is 5 weeks old now. He surprises us every day with how much and how fast he is changing. He looks very long now because he is starting to stretch out more; his legs aren't curled up under him all the time like they were when he was born. He has discovered his hands. He sucks on them sometimes to sooth himself, he grabs things and holds on for a few seconds, he reaches for and hits things that are in front of him, and he sometimes holds his bottles and pacifier. Those things are probably accidental, but I tell myself that he can do those things so young because he is a genius. Allan spends time showing Cayden his hands and making them touch each other in front of his eyes. Cayden seems to enjoy that. It amazes me how many newborn toys and books we bought but he prefers things like looking at his hands and staring at new things and people.

October 1st we decided it was time to let him start sleeping in his crib. We noticed weeks ago that he seems to like his crib. We were putting him in it for naps and playtime and turned on his iPod and let him watch his mobile and noticed that he put himself to sleep. Usually we would have to wait until he was all the way asleep to put him to bed. I kept telling Allan that we were just getting lucky with the crib and I was using every excuse I could to keep him sleeping in our room. But then I had to admit that I needed Cayden next to me more than Cayden needed to be next to me. So now he is in his own room and everyone seems to be sleeping much better- including the dog and cats who are back in our room at night.

So here is a list of things that Cayden likes right now: Being held, looking at shadows and fans, Josie (the black and white cat), his hands, going for walks, riding in the car seat, baths, and his pacifier (unfortunately for us!).

Things Cayden doesn't like: Hiccups, having gas, being hungry, tummy time, poopy diapers, boogers in his nose, having boogers taken out of his nose, and water on his head.