Monday, February 28, 2011

Elyse in Action - Part One

I had so much fun with the last video, thought you'd like to see more. This first one is the little Missy, active and dancing away. Don't you just love baby thighs? Pure sweetness. Five and a half months old.

More on the way...

video

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Five at Five

Five things that are making me happy right now...


Honking Doors. Recently, I went to get something out of the freezer in the garage and when I shut the door I heard this sound that was exactly like a bus horn blaring. Turns out there is a basket of toys on top of the freezer and now every time we shut the door it honks. And no, I'm not touching those toys. It makes me smile every time.


Kashi Oatmeal Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies. These are super yummy, hearty little cookies. Only two Weight Watcher points they are also a healthy snack. Plus, the big bonus... They have automatic portion control. You really can only eat just one. They have a ton of fiber, so just trust me on this.


Trish McEvoy #9 - Blackberry Vanilla Musk. Have I mentioned that I'm not HR for the first time in fifteen years? The new role plus working in a tiny office equals - I get to wear perfume again. And this scent - oh, I am in love with it. Happiness!


Singing this Billy Joel song to Elyse. The song is called "Goodnight My Angel". Babies grow up so fast, I don't want to waste a single second with my daughter. We recline in her pink chair and listen to lullabies together as she goes to sleep. This one really gets to my heart. I love holding her close, inhaling her sweet smell, and looking at the stars spread across her ceiling form her ladybug nightlight.


Adding brown rice to my salad. My friend Melinda and I ate at this quaint bakery downtown last weekend and she had brown rice salad with tuna. It was tuna salad, brown rice with arugula - delicious and healthy! I never thought of adding rice to my salad. This plus a recipe from my friend Linda inspired me. I made some chicken salad this week with almonds, cranberries and brown rice over raw spinach with crumbled bacon on top. I have to say - it was delish!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Rolling Over, Oh My

SIDS. A term that strikes terror in my heart. As the name implies, SIDS is the sudden and unexplained death of an infant who is younger than one year old. It's a frightening prospect because it can strike without warning, usually in seemingly healthy babies. Most SIDS deaths are associated with sleep (hence the common reference to "crib death") and infants who die of SIDS show no signs of suffering.

The other morning I was doing a happy dance getting ready for work as Elyse had slept all night and was still sleeping without even waking for her morning bottle. I was so happy and proud, until that terrible thought crept into my brain. Wait. Is she OK? That is strange she hasn't even made a peep. I better go check on her. It is amazing how I can go from celebrating to heart racing panic imagining the worst of circumstances that will not go away until I am reassured my daughter is OK. The only thing that gives me a bit of comfort - Bill worries just as much as me.

We've done our research. The following have been linked to an increased risk of SIDS:
  • smoking, drinking, or drug use during pregnancy;
  • poor prenatal care;
  • prematurity or low birth-weight;
  • tobacco smoke exposure following birth;
  • overheating from excessive sleepwear and bedding - including pillows, bumper pads, positioning devices and toys;
  • sleeping on their stomachs.
I took care of myself when I was pregnant. Elyse was full-term. We would never let anyone smoke near her. She only has a sheet in her crib - nothing else. No bumpers, blanket, toys, nothing. We keep a fan going to help with circulation in her room. She sleeps on her back... Well, until recently.

Bill and I are both aware that babies will eventually be rolling over and often you find them on their tummies. Everyone tells you, "It is OK once they know how to roll over." Our doctor has emphatically told us, "Always put her to sleep on her back until she is one, but it is OK if she rolls to her tummy." I get all that, but... It's my baby. I can't explain it to you. It terrifies me.

So, lately we've found her on her tummy. Often, what I'll do is go into her room before I go to bed and if she is on her tummy, I'll roll her back. It doesn't wake her up. It makes me feel better. It doesn't matter what anyone says. It doesn't matter that millions of parents (including friends of mine now) let their young babies sleep on their bellies because they tend to sleep better that way. While I have no judgment at all for those parents, it doesn't matter to me. For Bill and me, if there are rules we can follow that could help keep our baby safe, you can bet we will follow them. It just isn't worth the gamble to us.

Bill found her on her belly the other morning. I had rolled her over in the middle of the night, but we still found her this way. One thing is for sure, whether she's sleeping on her belly or back, no doubt this girl does wake up happy! Just the beginning of worrying about her daughter. Good thing she's more than worth it.

I apologize for the poor video quality!

video

Sunday, February 13, 2011

FIVE Months



Dearest Elyse,

Just five months ago yesterday you came into this world. So amazing. What a whirlwind of changes your birth has brought to us. Your Daddy and I were very happy and content together, but the addition of YOU has brought us insurmountable joy.

It has been a tough last month. You got so very sick. Bronchiolitis and pneumonia. You were sick so long that as you started feeling better, I was just sure you were saving up a multitude of changes. Once that sickness finally passed, your world opened and exploded with new awareness. You notice EVERYTHING now. You always search for us when you hear when one of us enter the room. You love your kitty and your doggie and squeal with delight when they come near you. You LOVE babies and children.
You had so much fun with your friend, Michael, when he came to visit.
You really enjoyed your cousin, Warren, who is just six weeks older than you.

Cousin Cierra holding you.

The look of fascination!


You just have to touch their face. Yes, you are just taken by babies.

You still have greyish steel blue eyes. We keep watching to see if they are going to change. But, they're holding their own so far.


You love lights. Aunt OJ got your a ladybug that projects stars on your ceiling. We turn that on as you doze off in your crib at night and we hear you cooing yourself to sleep looking at the stars. You also like to hang out in your swing while Mama is tidying up your room. Sometimes we play music and turn the lights on above your swing.


You are such a content baby. I was folding laundry the other night and Daddy laid you in the basket while he made you a bottle. We were so amazed - you didn't fuss a bit.


You cozied right up and let me take your picture.


You officially are a rolling baby. You rolled over from tummy to back about a month ago and just this week started rolling the other way.


You think you're pretty cool.


We do too.


As I mentioned, you love your pets and they think you are pretty neat too. We find Wilson in your room a LOT lately. I was sorting through clothes the other day, left the room and came back to this.


He does not like being booted out at bedtime.


Yeah, he is often not far from you. Always checking you out.


Wilson's not the only one. Another day, you were asleep in your carseat and I put you down in the living room. Look who I found hanging with you?


Your Great Uncle Harry spent some time with you last weekend. He enjoyed hanging out with you.


Your smile can brighten any Northwest day.


My boss saw you smile big the other day and he was surprised to see how it lights up your whole face.


I admit it - I just love all your faces.


Here are four more that melt my heart.



That heart shaped mouth. I can't stand it. I can almost hear you cooing just looking at this picture.


Our beautiful girl.


You are super "grabby" these days. I had you in your Bumbo while I was unloading groceries. Some of the cans of food got a little too close - next thing you know, they were on the floor.

Who me?

Happy Five Months, Baby Girl!

Monday, February 7, 2011

New Blog Title

I went ahead and announced our new blog and then we decided to change the name. I liked the name Manager to Mama. To Jess and me it described that constant back-and-forth we do between the professional world and our rules as wife and parent. But, it was also a little misleading. It sort of sounded like we left our roles behind as managers to become stay-at-home parents. Somehow the name just wasn't working.

Here is the new name - Domestic CEOs. We thought it was clever - hope you like it too! Make sure to update the blog name in Google Reader or your favorite RSS! New blog banner coming... This working stuff really cuts into my blogging. Thus, the whole reason behind the blog. Good thing there are two of us!

Here is the latest post. Don't forget to e-mail us with your story. Heck, you don't even have to be a Mom or a parent at all. We welcome all stories, advice, pictures, recipes, etc!!

The Real Deal Meal



Issues (excuses maybe) why I haven't been much into cooking this last year:
  • Constant nausea during the first half of my pregnancy.
  • Once nausea got better, that growing baby taking residence in my belly left me less hungry.
  • Bringing new baby home and suddenly having no time to spend in the kitchen
  • To now going back to work and having even less time than before.
OK, let's be honest. All those reasons, excuses or not, have left me hardly ever cooking a prepared, from scratch meal. Sure, I've whipped up some dinners, but they are generally nothing to be proud of and usually involving a box, can or frozen option. Whenever I am perusing blogs in Google Reader, I see my friend Linda's site and just feel plain guilty. She prepares amazing, gourmet, delectable meals with fresh ingredients for her husband Ben and herself just about every night. Plus, she works in marketing for Jack-in-the-Box, so her meals are always styled beautifully too!

I decided to set that guilt aside, and just do something about it! Bill and I were headed to the store Saturday morning and I pulled up Linda's site and printed out three of her recipes and jotted down all of the items I needed. After we arrived at the store and I had left said list on the kitchen counter, we drove all the way back home to get it and were finally able to purchase our groceries. We headed home with our bags full of fresh veggies, meat and herbs.

Last night, I prepared Linda's meal of Grilled Citrus Pork Chops with Carmelized Onions, Sweet Potato Mash and Citrusy Green Beans. I added to the meal some cheddar biscuits and I have to tell you, I was quite proud of myself. I created quite a mess in the kitchen with my three pots/skillets, cutting boards, zesters, knives, measuring cups/spoons happening and I had some issues with the timing of trying to get everything prepared at the same time. Bill was upstairs with Elyse watching the SuperBowl as I madly raced to get our meals together. It turned out great, Bill enjoyed it and while it was technically two servings, we had just enough for him to take a plate to work. This is perfect for us, as there are very few meals in which we actually covet the leftovers anyway.

I'm excited to try out more of Linda's recipes. With the limited time I have for food preparation these days, I like how I can go to her site and easily pull up the recipes, job down the ingredients I need and she explains step-by-step how to get the whole meal on the table.

Thanks, friend! Let's hope I can keep this up!

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