Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Weaning...it can be happy!

Welp...it happened.
My baby weaned himself.
And not in the way that lots of babies do...you know with just refusing to latch on or preferring sippy cups.
No...in the way that he's a wild animal and wouldn't stop biting me!
But for real.
I tried a couple of the "tried and true" methods to get him to stop.
But it got to the point where I literally dreaded feeding him because I knew it was only a matter of seconds before he would chow down.
His teeth may be small..but they're like puppy teeth: sharp.
So in order to preserve "the girls" for his future siblings...I decided to call it quits.

And it was hard.
I was never one that LOVED nursing.
I liked it enough to keep doing it.
And I did enjoy the one on one time it provided us.
But what I did love was knowing how incredible my body was.
My body was sustaining another life.
And that's amazing.
But for some reason it was still so hard for me to realize it was over.
After thinking about it I realized my sadness was twofold...

1) I was scared of what my family/friends/world would think of me.
I was scared that people would think I hadn't tried hard enough to get him to stop biting.  Or that I was "being selfish" by not giving him the best nutrition.

And 2) (the one I was most fearful of) I was worried that the bond with Kameron would go away.
For 9 months I carried him.  And he was quite literally attached to me.
Then for another 9 months I've still carried him a lot...haha.  And when he was hungry, he was attached.
What if that closeness would be gone?

So now the sadness solving: 
1) Who cares.  We spend too much of our time worrying/comparing.  People can think what they want.  I'm still a good mom.
2) In the 2 weeks or so since he's been weaned I can assure you the closeness is not gone.  In fact it may have gone up.  

Since my friend, Glenna, is amazing...she threw me a "weaning party!!"
She knew it was going to be a hard transition for me emotionally so she decided to turn it into a celebration!  Instead of focusing on the fact that I didn't make it to a year (my initial goal), let's celebrate the fact that I made it 9 months!

The party kicked off with Kameron needing a nap. :)
So we headed on up to Glenna & Matt's guest bedroom and conked out.

Whilst we were napping, Glenna created this delicious concoction.
(Yep...you're really seeing what you're seeing.)

After eating that delicious booby cake/brownie, we had an intense round of "pin the booby on the baby."
I landed mine on his nose, Glenna landed hers on his shoulder, Matt's on his tummy, and Alex?  Well...he's that other one. :)

At this point Kam started to get tired so Alex and I headed home to put him down.
Once we was asleep we went back over and ended the night watching "Look Who's Talking."

It was such a great evening!
It really helped me feel like "I dun good."

On to the next phase...

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


 Alex's graduation from the U was on May 1 & 2.
Since that is such a big accomplishment we made the trip so he could walk across the stage and we, as his family, could show him just how proud we are.
I'm so glad we did!
I loved watching Alex soak up those graduation moments.
I can still remember my BYU graduation so vividly and it really is such a satisfying time.
I'm grateful he got to experience that too.
Plus we got to see lots of family and friends, which is always great as well!

Until this trip, I never fully understood just how much Utah had my heart.
When we made the decision to move to California, I thought my sadness was wrapped up in leaving my job and some framily. (y'know...friends/family)
And even these past months being in California I was still under that impression.
But being in Utah made me realize I left a huge chunk of my life there.
And I know that sounds silly.
Of course you carry yourself with you wherever you go.
But the life I knew for 8.5 years is along the Wasatch Front.

I've heard of nostalgia.
And I even thought I'd experienced it before.
But I was wrong.
I truly went through nostalgia during this trip.
The smells, the sounds, the billboards, the cars, the scenery, the restaurants, etc. kept taking me back to the life I knew so very well.

It took me back to my amazing college years.
The years where responsibility was next to nilch.
The years where I could (and voluntarily) stayed up until 4am multiple times a week.
The years when I lived for football games, dance parties, trips to J-Dawgs, and late night strolls through the streets south of campus.
The years when because of amazing religion professors my testimony truly and genuinely grew into what it is today.
The years when I was tried and tested in my faith and commitment.
The years when best friendships were made.
The years when I was blessed with meeting my husband and having him by my side as I finished up my degree.
The years when all my hard work, support from my family, and dedication culminated in that moment of taking that last final.

It took me back to Alex's and my dating days.
The days when we were rapidly trying to learn everything about each other.
The days when we knew "let's watch a movie" was code for "let's watch the beginning of the movie and then end up kissing for the rest of it." (Let's be honest...you've all done that.)
The days when we didn't worry about money or bills or jobs or what we're going to do for the rest of our lives.
The days when we would talk for hours. (Since neither one of us can stay up past 11:30 now...)
The days when we would talk about what we wanted the future to look like.
And then started to make that future the present.

It took me back to our newlywed months.
The months when we were overwhelmed with gratitude for the abundance of gifts.
The months when we were ecstatic to use all of those gifts.
The months when we put together our tiny apartment and made it ours.
The months when I changed my name and we finally got Utah driver's licenses.
The months when we could go wherever, whenever.
The months when we started to worry about money and bills and jobs.
The months when everything was "The first ____ as a married couple."
The months when we learned how to navigate living with the opposite gender.
The months when we turned 7 Peaks into our second residence.
The months when we got through the "hardest" year of our marriage...(according to everyone apparently.)

It took me back to the year we prepped our family to expand.
When we prayed long and hard about if it was the right choice.
When we got the answer and it was scary.
When I got pregnant...and it was even scarier.
When we planned all the excitement in telling our family.
When I suffered through first trimester ailments, fatigue, and hormones...and Alex suffered right alongside...just with much less bodily function and moodiness.
When Alex and I worked long hours to try and prepare for when he'd be in school and I'd be on maternity leave. (Now I wish we hadn't worked AS hard and had enjoyed our time together more as just the two of us.)
When we read books, listed out names, talked about parenting, what kind of birth experience we wanted, etc.
When we'd take walks together to get my pregnant body moving.  And when I'd start to slow down Alex would slap my bum and say, "Giddy up, horsey."
When we went to doctor's appointments that were actually really fun because we LOVED our OB.
When we worried while I had placenta previa.
When we were over the moon relieved when I recovered from said previa.
When Alex would rub my head, back, feet, neck...lots. :)
When we sat on the couch and watched "Friends" for hours, because let's be honest...a pregnant woman in the heat of summer is a bad mix.  I'd rather stay in my cool basement, thank you.
When instead of buying concert tickets, guitar equipment, or going out to dinner a lot we bought maternity clothes, baby stuff, and lots of pebble ice Route 44 waters from Sonic.
When we anxiously awaited August 1.
When we prayed about whether or not to get induced...and the answer was an overwhelming yes.

It took me back to the day I was changed.
The day when I spent 21 hours getting a little soul to the earth.
The day when I experienced pain I never knew I could endure.
The day when I relied on my family, husband, and God more than ever.
The day when I watched my doctor do "his last run."
The day when I saw my son take his first breathe, whimper his first cry, and take his first suck.
The day when I watched my husband become a father.
The day when I KNEW Creationism is real.
The day when I've never been so alive and so physically/emotionally/mentally spent all at the same time.
The day when my little Kameron became mine.

It took me back to the moments leading up to our California move.
The moments where our home became a haven for our new family.
The moments when I cried.  And cried.  And cried.
And not from joy.
From sadness.
From missing my old life.
Missing my old me.
And then crying because I felt so guilty for thinking those things since I loved my little bundle more than I could bare.
The moments when I picked myself up and realized that no...my life isn't solely mine.
The moments when I started to be ok with being more selfless and started to enjoy being a mother. 
The moments when I started to be ok with my new life and my new normal.
The moments when I took Kameron on walks every day through the beautiful neighborhoods of SLC.
Sometimes with friends...sometimes just the two of us...or three of us.
The moments when I watched him smile.
The moments when I watched him roll over.
The moments when I heard him coo and giggle and discover everything his voice could do.
The moments when I went back to work and had to navigate that into my new life.
The moments when I couldn't stand how adorable he looked all bundled up for the winter weather.

I think with us deciding to make the move, it being the holiday season, and me being so upset with leaving my job...that I really didn't have a chance to say goodbye to Utah.
And maybe in some ways it's better that way.
Maybe I would've been a blubbering mess if I had really stopped to think about just how much I really do love that place.
I think ever since I went to BYU I had spent my whole Utah residency counting down the days until I was out of there.
Am I glad we moved to California?
You bet.
I still know it was the best next step for our family.
(And you better believe I had a blessing and answer to prayer to prove it.)
But I am forever grateful for my time in Utah.
It's where so many amazing things happened in my life that will bless me for the rest of it.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Farewell, Milly girl!

 So funny story.
The gardner bought our Honda Civic!
We weren't really in the market to sell it...or so we thought.
We had been contemplating it slightly, but only because it's SO hard with Kameron in the tiny back seat.
It was hard when he was a newborn, but even more so now that's he huge.
The Civic was not made to cart children around.  Or anyone around.
I'm not sure why they even put a backseat in them since it's so tiny.  HA!

She was perfect for the time I bought her.
My 4Runner had gotten reamed by an F-350 in a snowstorm.
(Let's not talk about it.  I still cry when I think too much about Neil.  I will forever thank my daddy for letting me get that car.  If you want to read my farewell address to Neil...click here. *sniff.tear*)
So once Neil was totaled out I needed a new car.
Enter MILLY!
Milly was perfect for the time.
I was about to move to Salt Lake City after getting married and needed my Milly girl to get me to work, which was 35 miles away.
If we had had the 4Runner AND the Element...there's no way I could have continued working at New Haven because the gas would have been more than we could handle.
Besides being my work commuter car, she has taken me on many adventures.

1. Santa Barbara to meet my in laws for the first time.
2. Las Vegas to see Celine Dion.
3. Santa Barbara again for our 2nd reception.
4. St. George for a dance competition/babymoon get away
5. Bringing my newborn baby home.
6. Moving to Santa Barbara.
7. Disneyland.
8. And not to mention the countless trips to fun places all over the Salt Lake Valley.

The gardner was looking for a car to get his boys that drive to work from an hour away.
He liked the Civic and liked the gas mileage it got.
After some questions, NO haggling, and a moment of "k, seriously are we doing this?"...we got a deal we couldn't refuse.
Within 3 days we had cleaned her out, made her sparkle and shine, went out for one last drive, and handed on over the keys and title.
It was a little sad watching Milly go, but I am so grateful for the money that we can put towards a different car that I won't A) kill my back trying to get my beast of a child in and out B) bonk my head trying to get my beast of a child in and out and C) bonk my beast of a child's head getting in and out.

And now a walk down memory lane during the 3 years we had the Milly.

Our first trip to Santa Barbara!
I remember we headed down on St. Patrick's Day.  This is us leaving Provo town!

This is when Alex pushed the seat back since he was taking over driving and he crushed all my newly bought Thin Mint cookies.
I wanted to cry.
I just had to remember I loved him more than I loved cookies...right?  :)

Alex talking about gyros on the way back to Provo.

With my ladies after our serious high from just seeing Celine Dion!!!!

Freshly washed cars at our first apartment.
HONDA family! :)

And fast forward 2 years!  haha!
Kameron's trip home from the hospital.

So teensy just watching the world go by at 2 days old!

First real outing post partum.
I felt serious pride.  haha!

SO TIRED while making the move to CA!
We drove mostly in the middle of the night so Kam would sleep the whole way.
The cub IS back there...somewhere...

Taking selfies with my babe while Grammie is in Whole Foods.

Baby in the trunk.

Baby mad it's cold and rainy.

And there she goes!

So long, Milly girl!
You were a good car and I sure love you lots.
I hope you bring joy to someone else.

9 months in and 9 months out!

Let's not talk about the fact that my baby is 3 months away from being 1.
Let's talk about how my baby is 9 months old!

^I love when his little feet are sticking out behind him playing.
I could stare at it all day.

We don't have our check up until Thursday, but we're roughly guessing he's about 24 lbs.
(At least that's how much weight he adds to us when we get on the scale with him. :)

He crawls all over the place, pulls up to kneeling or standing, and is walking while holding on.
It's definitely a full time job keeping an eye on him!

He understands what "look" means and I'm pretty sure knows his name.
He also started to clap, which is my new favorite trick of his!

He tries to imitate anything we do with our mouths.
He loves to wiggle his tongue, click his tongue, and motor boat his lips.

This last month we moved into a different house and this house has huge closet mirrors.
Kameron LOVES them.
He climbs up to standing and just babbles at himself...or makes out with himself...whatever...

Thank heavens he thinks loud noises are hilarious!
If a blender starts up, a vacuum turns on, a toilet flushes, or someone is drying their hair...he starts laughing!

He's a trooper baby at Disneyland!
He loves the rides and the characters!
Pluto and Goofy are his favs.

Ok ok...this might be my favorite...
He has started to scrunch up nose/face and breathe out loudly.
I laugh pretty much every time.
I die from the cuteness.

He's started to eat more solids now that he's figured out chewing.
Minus a few foods I can pretty much give him bits of whatever we are eating, which is SO nice.
His favorite foods are: bites cereal, cheese, bread, strawberries, yogurt bites, applesauce, tortillas, cooked chicken/turkey, and french fries.

We've also entered the tantrum phase.
It's a gem.

Overall, he's just one happy, busy boy.
He's so curious and very attentive to detail.
Everyone that meets him marvels at how alert he is, how he looks people in eyes, and how well mannered he behaves.
I'm so grateful to be his mother and to watch him grow.

Happy 9 months, Kameron Mark!
We love you, cub.