Friday, August 22, 2014

Popping In - Five on Friday!

Hi long lost friends!

Wow, this blogging break has certainly been what the doctor ordered. I've missed popping in with updates for y'all but to be completely honest, it has been so refreshing not logging into blogger and just spending that time with Caroline Grace. All you mamas out there who can juggle work, blog and mommyhood - hats off to you! I can't promise I'll be updating my blog often (outside of Caroline's monthly updates) but I will try my very best to pop in from time to time!

So what have we been up to? Here are 5 updates...

1. Working and Hanging with our Moms...

Returning to work has been so much better than I had anticipated. It's been great getting back into my routine and I am really happy with my decision. My projects keep me really busy so I am distracted throughout the day and I come home chomping at the bit to hold my mini.

My MIL stayed with us the first two weeks after I returned to work and now my mom is with us for the next two. I love both of these moms so dang much and feel incredibly blessed that they are the ones watching Caroline while Matt and I are away at work until her daycare starts. I swear Caroline thinks she is at summer camp. Every day I get home and hear about her daily activities and it goes a little like this..."well, after you left we did morning yoga and stretched, we read books, did tummy time, played on the activity mat, sat in the Bumbo, drank all of our bottles, napped, sang songs, walked around outside, etc." I love it and am so spoiled by them!

2. Pumping...
Many of you have checked back in on me to see how breastfeeding has been going and I can't thank you all enough for thinking of me! I've been exclusively pumping the past few months and my milk production has only slightly increased since returning to work and pumping 6 times a day. On a good day I can pump about 12 ounces of milk and we supplement the rest with Earth's Best Organic Formula. However, I've decided to throw in the towel and am starting to slowly cut pumping sessions out of the day. It's bittersweet. 

3. Dieting...
I am not going to bore you with regular updates on my post-partum weight loss, but I do feel like since I dragged y'all into it with my weekly "bump dates" I owe you an update on what has happened to those 28 pounds I gained. The update is short...half of those pounds still remain and I am working my booty off to get rid of them (diet and exercising). And while 12-14 pounds may not seem all that bad, I am less than 5 feet tall and have very petite features so all of those extra pounds currently hide in my lower belly giving me the appearance that I am 5 months pregnant still. Prior to pregnancy, I wore size 4 jeans. Now I wear....maternity jeans. So that's that. And no, I will not be posting any picture updates.

4. Matt...
Big update coming soon. Stay tuned. Proud of this man!

5. Weekend...

Dad was sad he was missing out on all the fun mom is having watching Caroline so he's decided to fly into town for the weekend to hang with his favorite grandbaby. And oh, Lindsey got sad too so she booked a "work trip" and is staying with us half of next week. Saturday night, mom and dad have asked to watch Caroline for the evening so Matt and I could have our second date night ever. Since Caroline arrived we've been really bad about breaking away just the two of us so we are really excited to try a new restaurant, Baku, for dinner. We always drive by and say "we should try that place sometime" and now we are finally going to! 

And because every post needs a picture of my cute baby who doesn't sleep anymore (early 4 month sleep regression?)...

Happy weekend!
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Monday, August 11, 2014

Caroline Grace {3 Months}

Happy 3 months my sweet Caroline Grace,

I am so thankful to have spent most of this month at home with you. Returning to work has been difficult but we make the most of our mornings, evenings and weekends together. Your personality shines brightly these days and everyone you meet falls in love with you. You are such a happy, smiley baby, especially in the mornings and during bath time, and your little grins melt me to pieces. You win my heart more and more each day and you are such a blessing to us. I love you, little one.
 
Love, 

Mommy

Three Month Highlights:
  • You hit 10 lbs this month!
  • I was in denial for probably a couple weeks too long, but we finally graduated you to size 1 diapers as well as 0-3 month clothes. It was a hard transition for me but your cute wardrobe has helped me cope.
  • 98% of the time people comment about how much you look like your daddy. We still don't see it but apparently everyone else does!
  • You are still eating 4 ounces per feeding (every 3 hours or so) and you go back and forth between breast milk and formula equally. Mom is pumping at work 3 times a day now to keep you fed and has even seen a little increase in my milk supply (yay!).
  • You took your second beach trip this month - Bald Head Island.
  • You met your great grandparents.
  • At bath time you get really playful and vigorously stomp the side of your bath tub.
  • You are super smiley, especially during the mornings when you are happiest.
  • You hate your car seat, especially when you're not in the car. You prefer to be out and about and especially love to be worn facing out. 
  • You love to suck on your fist, have become uninterested in pacifiers (even the wub) and really enjoy your time playing on your activity mat.
  • Your grip is so strong and you now help hold your bottle, books and toys.
  • You despise wet diapers, even before the line turns blue you let us know you are ready to be changed.
  • You have found your voice and babble all day long now.

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Monday, July 28, 2014

On Going Back to Work


I return to work next Monday. The wave of emotions that sweep through my heart are so bittersweet. The subject of staying at home versus returning to work has been deeply discussed countless times throughout my maternity leave and as my first day back to work quickly approaches it seems to occupy my thoughts all day. We've reviewed our finances, weighed our personal reasons, considered our career goals and more. At this time in our lives we think it makes the most sense for me to keep  working.
 
Our daycare doesn't start until September so both Grandmas are coming to stay with us for two weeks each to watch Caroline for the month of August (we are so lucky and grateful)! Hopefully this eases my transition going back to work a bit better.
 
Most of you probably don't know what I even do. Heck, there are days I still don't know what I do. My official title is "Business Development Coordinator" for the second largest law firm in Charlotte and is actually the second title I've owned since starting at my firm exactly two years ago today (happy anniversary to me). Before accepting this position I knew it would be temporary as my dream of staying at home with all my babies would outweigh any reason to stay in the corporate world. However, once we actually started planning our family my thoughts and attitude toward being a working mom began to change. I love my job more than I ever thought I would which is not something most people can say. My co-workers have become close friends, my boss is someone I love and admire, my daily activities stretch and challenge me to think, I am thankful for my salary which we depend on, my schedule is fairly flexible and I enjoy working with the attorneys I support. To give all of this up, all that I've worked so hard for would be a sacrifice in itself. I love my baby just as much as any other mother and choosing to go back to work is no easy decision. 
 
There will be many sacrifices I will have to make as I return to work. I know that 8 hours of emails, conference calls and meetings will follow sleepless nights, lunches out with friends will likely be replaced by eating at my desk so I can leave on time for daycare pick up, my “second shift” will begin at 5 pm and I will have very little leftover time to exercise, blog or soak in the tub (unless I get up even earlier). And although we love our amazing daycare, I know I will still worry over how Caroline is being cared for and sometimes feel guilty about not being with her all the time or even missing out on some of her "firsts."
 
However, I hope to set a wonderful example to Caroline and show her that her mom can have a fulfilling career, contribute in some way outside the home and still be a loving mother. I want to show her that her mommy was created with spiritual gifts, passions and talents that include and extend beyond being a mother. I want to show her at an early age that there are rewards for hard work. I want her to see Matt and I as equally involved in her life. Most of all, I want to exemplify strength, endurance, dedication and tenacity, all with joy and love for her.
 
I'll be signing of from the blog this week to soak in these last days at home with Caroline and will also be taking a short break as I get settled back into work. Unfortunately, when my cup is too full the blog is the first thing in my life to get cut out and this happens to be one of those seasons for me. I promise not to stay away too long!
I'll miss this baby-wrecked living room.
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