Monday, December 20, 2010

We are One!

Today we all turn one. TJ is one year old and we are one year old parents. It's the most amazing feeling on earth. Finally a birthday that isn't plauged with negative feelings about getting older and it belongs to my little one. lol

TJ had the craziest Elmo themed bash to celebrate his birthday. He and 15 other little ones (and more adults than I could count) rocked out to Elmo songs, played Elmo games, ate Elmo's favorite foods and ate Elmo in the form of cupcakes and cookies. Oh and they wore Elmo as well. It was all so much fun for everyone involved.

I really embraced the theme and thought out every detail, down to were the children sat and what types of materials would be appropriate for their age group. As a result the party went very well and all of the children aged 1-7 had a chance to do fun things. I had the privelage of making just about everything for the party, which was my favorite thing about planning. So I am thinking I had more fun than anyone else.

I had no idea how busy we would be actually running the party but I figured whatever happened we would not have time to take pictures, so we hired a photographer and it was the best decision we could have made. The party and the pictures were both fabulous.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Big Bird in the Sky Update.

GeoTagged, [N36.19687, E86.87015]

The planetarium show was the most amazing thing I have ever seen. The lesson was most certainly appropriate for a 4 year old. It was entertaining and memorable. More so than anything Elmo was there. He sang and let out his trademark laugh a great deal, which means it's TJ approved. If only I can get them to have Elmo ask a baby it would be a weekly stop.

I attempted to take a picture and of course was yelled at in the process. Oh well it's not the first time I have broken planeterium rules. Lol

My baby is 9 months!

Oh where oh where has the time gone. It feels like just yesterday he was laying in my arms taking in every emotion on my face. It feels like he just held his bottle for the first time or managed to finally sit on his own.

In reality those milestones happened over 5 months ago. My baby is 9 months now and it seems as if the passing of every minute takes a tiny bit of his "babyness" with it.

While I am thrilled to watch him grow physically, emotionally and intellectually; it's heartbreaking to face the trade off.

With my baby hitting the 9 month mark comes walking, new teeth, transference of his infatuation with me to other caregivers and a newfound ability to resist anything he doesn't like with more than a cry.

My baby isn't a baby anymore. I'm not sure how I feel about that. If he could I am sure he would tell me to get over it, stop kissing me every minute and let me down so I can do what I need to do. He's officially over me and into everything else.

I realized I was done when I attempted to brush his teeth one day but was met with ah-ah-ah and na-na. After snatching the toothbrush, he crawled away cup in one hand tooth brush in another. Once he was far enough, he proceeded to brush his teeth.

I sat there stunned at having been reprimanded by a 9 month old but with plenty of peace knowing no one would EVER take advantage of him. Oh well I had a good run. Nothing good last forever but the memories will.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Big Bird in the Sky

My oh my how life has changed since I became a mother. Most Fridays were all
about happy hours and dancing. Fastforward a few months and I am spending my Friday evening previewing the new show at the planetarium featuring seasame street characters. The crazy thing is I'm too excited about it.

The minute I heard about Elmo being featured in this show I knew I had to come. TJ loves Elmo and we gotta get our learn on. Gotta go the show is starting.

Blogging from my phone finally!

So I finally remembered to get the application that would allow me to blod efficiently from my phone. That's great news because I don't regularly use my laptop and have not since I purchased my first iPhone. With this app I can blog and load TJ pictures, most of which are captured by my iPhone, in a snap. So...I will be posting more.

So excited!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Sleep Baby, Sleep

At about 2 months I determined TJ was probably going to have sleep difficulties. Boy was I right. I have spent more hours than I want to count attempting to rock him to sleep as he kicked, cried, laughed, scratched, wiggled and fought. There is nothing more frustrating than spending an hour to get him to sleep only to put him in the crib and have him wake right up. Committed to sharing my bed with my husband and not my baby, I continued to put him in his crib at the beginning of the night but would end up on the futon in his nursery or the couch in our living room. It seemed as if nothing was working.

The problems came in waves. A new issue would present itself and then we would begin troubleshooting it until we reached a solution. What followed was nighttime bliss until a new problem presented itself. Most of the time it was a teething, new milestone or allergy that caused our sleep hiccup. By the time we got through a week of teething pain or allergy driven congestion, TJ's sleep routine was destroyed as was his willingness to sleep alone.

Being the well read (some say overly read) mother I am, I understood the sleep limitations my precious baby had. After all he was not yet 6 months, the age most babies are able to sleep through the night. He also had not had a consistent sleep routine because he was so rapidly changing so was his schedule. He had never really been taught or allowed to learn how to put himself to sleep or more importantly back to sleep in the middle of the night. Most of all he was used to the consistent attention attachment parenting provides and wanted that throughout the night.

So we had to make some changes. After reading and trying the Sears book (an attachment parent's Utopian sleep manual), the No-Cry Sleep Solution, the happiest baby on the block (he was too old for those methods)and other popular methods, I gave up. Well I didn't give up on sleep, I gave up on my ideal situation and tried the Ferberizing. I'm guilty, I Ferberized my baby. You know what? It worked.

My once tired, fussy baby, became a bubbly, unbelievably energetic little person. He began "talking" more and his development hit the fast track. I must note, he was never behind developmentally but there were milestones he seemed to be on the cusp of hitting that he seemed to master over night. This is not just about milestones, this is about health. I had no idea just how much sleep a young child needs but our pediatrician said somewhere between 16-18 hours at this age. Without enough sleep a rapidly developing baby can begin to suffer.

With that said I attempted to find the Ferber book (which I could not) and called on my mommy mentors to help me through this. My high school bestie, Wendy saved the day giving me explicit instructions about what to do and what not to do. She also convinced me not to feel guilty and to use this time to relax as much as possible. The first night was excruciatingly, horrible. I listened to my baby cry for 2 hours but he went to sleep. He slept 13 hours straight that night and woke up with a smile on his face. The next night was just as traumatic for me he cried an hour and 15 minutes but it was different. It started out frantic but turned into a hum of sorts. The third night was 45 minutes of off and on hums and moans that were barely audible because of his attempt to suck the Binky at the same time. It continued until it took less than 10 minutes for him to go to bed.

For the first time in months I could eat dinner, have conversations and go to bed without anticipating an interruption. If he woke up he would work it out on his own and fairly quickly. Most importantly, I was able to really enjoy the only time I had alone with Steven. It made such a difference in my day to have time to reconnect with Steve on a daily basis. It was amazing while it lasted.

10 days into the Ferber sleep training, TJ had his first fever, his first emergency room visit and first ear infection. Doctor's orders were sleep him upright, preferably on my chest, monitor his fever throughout the night for four days and administer fever reducers around the clock. We retreated to the rocking chair and couch for four days and then to my bed for the other days. After 10 days of snuggling, which I must admit I did really enjoy, my baby boy was all better, I had recovered from the trauma of the ER visit and I finally stopped worrying. We were both ready to get back to business as usual.

The first night was nerve wrecking. When TJ cried as soon as we sat down in the rocker to read bedtime books, I knew we would quickly get back on track. He remembered the bedtime routine. Even though it was distressing to have him crying at the thought of going to bed it was good to know he knew what was about to happen. I put him down and he cried an hour and a half but went to sleep. The next day was an hour, the next 45 minutes, the next 30. It gets better every day. It's good to know when the book says an interruption in the schedule requires retraining,that does not mean completely starting over.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Summer, Summer, Summer Time

Busy, busy, busy. This summer has proven to be even more crazy than I could imagine. As of today we have less than 3 weeks before this primary campaign is over. With the finish line in sight, we are struggling through the final stretch, often most difficult leg of the race. With that said, Steve is leaving the house before we wake up and getting in often times before TJ goes down for the night. So we try to have lunch everyday so TJ can have some good "dads" time daily. So far it is working for us but with the beginning of early voting a few days away, I am sure the lunch meetings will not be happening.

Right now TJ and I are gearing up to help Steve at the polls as much as we can. I am currently looking for the perfect infant carrier because our beloved Baby Bjorn is no longer working. With our new carrier we will hang out at the polls and encourage voters to vote for us. I am pretty sure the next 3 weeks will be an experience we will never forget. Whatever it may be, I want to make sure TJ is actively present throughout the process of getting voters to the poll. Even though he won't remember any of it, I can tell him stories about whatever is sure to do to crack me and everyone else up. And of course, I want him to be in the pictures. Yes I have an outfit for the primary day and for the results.

Even with all of the hard work behind us and ahead of us, we have still managed to have some fun. TJ baby had his first opportunity to swim in the pool. I said swim because that is what my little hunk of chunk did. We put him in the pool and he kicked and splashed until we could no longer keep him in the pool. We tried several times to remove him when we thought he had enough but he complained. Finally, we had to be the adults and take heed to the tale tell blue lips. We got the sweetest video of his first swim.

We also took TJ to his first hot chicken festival, a huge fourth of July tradition in Nashville. We spent the day cooling off in the beer tent where TJ stole a nap and every one's heart at the same time. In between, Steve handed out campaign stickers and talked with people about his views. All in all we made it a great day doing what us Turner's do. LOL

I can't say enough how much I love being a wife and now being a mother. My guys make it easy to love it. I enjoy being watching them together and imagining the amazing things they will teach each other. Best of all when we are all together, we have an amazing time. In a "normal" situation, I may have taken our times together for granted but with the level of activity in our lives, I have to make the most of our time. I understand every TJ first Steve and I witness together is a gift. Here's to many more.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Been Gone For A Minute But I'm Back

OK so....where do I start. This last couple of months have been hectic, to say the least. TJ baby experienced a major milestone the day he hit 4 months, sound the alarm, He started solids. The doctor was more than ready for him to start solids. She gave us the green light to pass up the nutritionally deficient infant cereals and get on to the good stuff. Well before I get to that let me get down to the stats

At 4 months TJ Baby was 20 lbs 13.5 oz.- the average weight of a 9 month old, 26 inches- the average height of a 6 month old which put him in the 99th percentile and makes him a certified Thanksgiving turkey. LOL

With that said you can see why his doctor wanted him on solids pronto. With the utmost concern about potential allergies, we decided to wait 4 days to introduce each new food. To date he has had pears, apples, peas, butternut squash, banana, brocolli, mango, carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach and avocado. He loves every bit of it and I like to think it's because of my special touch. I make all of his food from certified organic produce (one reason I have been a little busier than usual). It can be time consuming but it doesn't have to be, it only presents a problem for me because my schedule is already impossible. Once a week, I steam and puree enough food to fill my ice trays and store it. I could do it once every 3 weeks and be fine but I don't want to run out.
Here are my tools

All done

These pictures are of a huge food making session I had to prepare enough food for our week long vacation. That's right week long. Shortly after TJ baby turned 4 months Steve and I left for an anniversary getaway sans our sweet little baby. It took me a week to get enough food, clothes, toys, books and everything else gathered and packed so that my parents could have a good time keeping him in Atlanta. I'd exerienced a bit of anxiety over leaving him for so long and being so far away (we hung out on the West Coast)I was not prepared for how ridiculously sad I would be. Anxiety and tears aside he had a great time bonding with his family in Atlanta.

While TJ baby was chillin in the A, Steve and I were celebrating four years in Vegas and Newport Beach, CA. Needless to say we took advantage of the time by getting much needed rest and one on one time. There was drinking, a twice daily Fat Tuesday's visit, eating, sightseeing and virtually no gambling (we don't roll like that). I shocked myself by cutting loose as soon as I hit the strip. I ate and drank whatever I want, but I still hit the gym. Once we left Vegas, we went to Newport Beach and got some much needed R&R. Somewhere between we found the time to visit L.A.

The trip was great but as mentioned earlier I missed TJ so much I got sick. By the time we made it back to Atlanta, I was so hard up for some boogie shuggy, I woke him up at 1 am to get it. Oh yeah, we made it back to Atlanta in time for the 3 of us to spend the day of our anniversary and TJ's 5 month mark together. It was super special to celebrate our wedding on the day our baby turned five months. It felt like a kiss from God.

Once we finally made it back to Nashville, we immediately started preparing for Steven's birthday and the Christening of our beautiful baby boy. As usual we were constantly on the go without a minute to spare but what else is there to do when the list is a mile long.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

God bless Godmothers

Today we went to visit a church in the district. It's always really cool to fellowship with different churches. I just enjoy the variations you see in the cultures of each church but boy do the different start times wear me out. In comes TJ's godmother, who saves the day by taking him for the afternoon so we can get some rest.

So in the 5 hours she will have him we are trying to see a movie and attend part of a celebrity basketball game taking place in the district. I know that doesn't sound like rest but it is. Off to have a good time.

Friday, April 16, 2010


Of all the riches in the world, nothing is more valuable to me than sleep right now. TJ is in the throws of teething agony and seriously, if baby ain't happy the entire house is unhappy. Forget the whole saying about mama being happy. A couple of nights ago he woke up every 30 minutes through the first 6 hours of the night. The following day I was caught in an endless cycle of feed, rub gums, change runny diaper, offer pedialyte, rinse soiled clothes and sanitize changing area. Fast foward to today, runny poopies are still here but down by 50% and he is a lot less demanding. Needless to say I am still worn out but sound the alarm.....he slept from 9:30 to7:00. Finally, some sense of normalcy has returned. Even with the long stretch of sleep, I still have a huge sleep debt. Hopefully I will take a huge chunk out of it over the weekend.

In more exciting news, we started brushing gums today. He loves it. So I know it mat be overkill because he is lacking in the tooth department but I am fearful of rotten teeth pushing through his gums. Hey it serves multiple purposes. It cleans those gorgeous gums and soothes the itchies. He likes to chew on my fingers anyway so may as well add a brush and kiddie past to the mix.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Weight Issue

So I thought I would take this post pregnancy weight loss deal by the horns and get it done and over with. Boy was I wrong. I lost an initial 30 lbs in the first 6 weeks but then it all came to a halt. I have been stalled out at 194 for over 10 weeks now. What in the world gives?

I have been working out like crazy, but the scale just isn't budging. I am eating well in general and making changes everyday to make my diet even better. I just don't understand what is happening with me. At first I thought I was loosing inches so all would be well but I can't tell any difference in my clothes. I just don't know what I should do next. Life is too busy to only eat 1100 calories a day. I'm not ruining my metabolism to lose weight or risking my health because taking care of TJ is top priority for me. I can't do anything that will take me from my best.

Anywho, I have given myself the next 30 days to get to 189. I need to loose 6 lbs in the next 30 days or I am going to.....well I don't know what I will do but it needs to happen. A lot of people have told me to focus on cardio and less on strength training but I think that's silly. Honestly I rather be a toned 180 than a flabby 160. So I have to keep that going. I just have to figure out what I am doing wrong.

5 days before the baby

5 days after the baby

13 weeks post baby

17 weeks post baby

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Getting Too Big

From the time TJ was born, I have been anticipating seeing his juicy legs in those cute creeper outfits. Actually, before he was born I went to my favorite baby stores and purchased as many creepers (the ones dad would approve of anyway) I could find. Fast foward almost 4 months. It's not quite summer but it's one seriously hot spring and my opportunity to live out my creeper fantasy has finally come true.

I take of the tags and plop my juicy boy on the changing table, only to hit an immediate road block. Can't get it over his shoulders easily. OK breathe, take it slow. Over the shoulders....whew. Then I pull it over the belly and button it up. I take a moment to admire the sight of those juicy legs, then I sit him up. From here it all goes down hill. Not only is the outfit pulling in his stomach area but its all kinds of bunched up in his crotch.

I checked the tags again because I know this is a 9 month outfit. Yeah 9 months. I take that one off and try another, that's a no. I repeat this cycle until all but 8 outfits are in the, "This will never be worn" pile. Who knew my 16 week old would not be able to wear 9 month clothes. I thought I was being proactive by skipping the 3-6 and 6-9 month clothes but going to the 9 months. I guess I was wrong. Oh well, I guess we will be rolling up the legs on 9-12 month clothes on baby TJ before he hits 6 months.

After I shed a few tears in memoriam to the adorable outfits and money spent on them I let out a huge laugh. Despite the current fashion dilemma this robust baby is causing I am beyond blessed to have such a healthy baby. I will never have to fear hearing the dreaded words, failure to thrive, from the doctor's mouth. Even if he gets sick, he has more than a few pounds to spare. Honestly, from the day he was born everyone was saying he will eat and grow us out of house and home. I figured they were right, I just didn't think it would start now. Here are a few pictures of other things he has outgrown.

His feet totally hang over the end of his car seat.

The bathtub.

Oh yes and we are teething. Teething has completely rocked our schedule but we are fighting with everything we have. This is a mesh pouch that holds frozen fruit and veggies. The mesh keeps anything the baby could choke on from getting into the baby's mouth but allows them to gum on something hard and nutritious at the same time. I love it and he loves,even though he gets frustrated because he is not used to working or waiting for his food. But the great taste of frozen pear keeps him motivated.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

What's really going on with me

To put it simply everything and nothing at all. I know that seems to be quite ironic but hey the truth is the truth. I personally think life is colorful enough for a myriad of ironies to exist.

Anywho, Steve and I are working very hard to adjust to parenting. We are showering baby TJ with love as often as possible and tending our wounds as he showers us with the bumps and bruises any new baby would dish out to rookie parents. LOL For me this is done by devoting my days and nights to TJ. I have yet to return to work, the first attempt fell to the fears of both Steve and I, or at least work outside of the home. I spend my days reading the sweetest books and singing songs I haven't heard in over 25 years or so. We do the tummy time deal, the rolling game and the footsy game. We are learning to hold our bottle and eat off a spoon. We are coordinating hand activity with eye sight with 95% accuracy these days. Then there is the laundry, meals, my workouts, cleaning and doggycare.

When I look at that I realize I do a lot throughout the day but often times I can look back on my day and feel as if I have nothing to show for it. Don't get me wrong, seeing my beautifully healthy, happy baby at the end of the day is wonderful but I often feel a sense of guilt. I am often pretty exhausted throughout the day but I can't really justify it. So when people ask me what's going on, I say everything but nothing at all.

I know what I am feeling right now is probably part of the adjustment to going from a work environment to staying at home. I have always been somewhat a taskmaster. I get things done, that's what I do. For whatever reason, I thought I would continue that tradition once I had even more time at home. Boy was I wrong. I think I am less productive in the house, I have less time to keep myself up and more tired than ever. I am not sure if I am really in a place where I want to complain about it or make an adjustment so that I may except my new reality.

Though it has not been my habit of excepting anything beneath my expectations. I am considering a change of heart. Until I learn otherwise some things just have to fall off the list of priorities. I'm still not sure what I will part with but I now understand that I must choose. I know I will not allow anything to get in the way of loving that baby of mine completely. I can't let the hubby suffer and I can't afford to let myself go either. So what's a girl to do?

I'm sure in time I will figure it out.

Through all of the busyness or the lack there of. We found some time to have family pictures taken for Steve's race.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

My Birth Story

I wish I could say I was one of those women who unexpectedly went into labor while hanging out somewhere. I wish I could say I needed to rush home to pack my bag because I just wasn't ready. Instead I can say my bag was packed and repacked 3 times before I saw the first sign of labor. We made it to my due date and then we sailed right on by it.

I felt the first contraction around 3:30 am on December 17th which was my due date. Thinking I was well on my way to laborville, I gathered my rice sock, cold packs, massagers, iPhone (with labor playlist set). I dimmed the lights then found myself a cozy spot on the futon bed downstairs. I asked Steve to get as much sleep upstairs as he could while I didn't need him because I was sure he wouldn't sleep at all once I got to the point where I did need him.

As I settled in my contractions started to settle into a pattern. 3 contractions at about 5 minutes apart, a 10 minute break then it would start all over again. I decided I should try to get some sleep while I still could so I started to nod off. I fell in and out of sleep awaking for the occassional tough contraction but usually quickly finding that sleepy place again.

Around 2:00pm that afternoon, Steve suggested that we start walking. So off to the mall we go to walk TJ into this world. After a couple of hours of squatting, swaying and breathing in public, I decided it was time to labor in private where I could reserve some dignity. On the way home my contractions started coming 3-4 minutes apart, making the ride extremely difficult. I made the first call to the on-call midwife who told me to wait until they were a solid 3 minutes for 2 hours.

Once we got home, Steve ran a tub of hot water for me to soak in. From that point I began a rotation of soaking in the tub then leaning on Steve. We did that until I met the requirements somewhere near 1am Friday morning and then off to the hospital we went. As they were checking me in they noticed my blood pressure was extremely high and tested me for pre-eclampsia. The test was negative but they were not convinced so they decided to do a 24 hour urine analysis. In the meantime they checked me and I was only 2 centimeters. So they sent us home but with a sleeping pill and a huge jug to collect urine in.

We get home and I finally get some rest, even though every contraction was strong enough to wake me up. Once the sleeping pill wore off, I was back to working through every contraction with the help of Steven. We did that through the night until I was completely exhausted. Around noon on Saturday I had enough and went to the hospital to demand either pain relief or something that would allow me to sleep so I could deal with them better.

Once I got there my water broke and they had to keep me there regardless. A few minutes into our celebration we were told I had protein in my urine and would be treated for pre-eclampsia. That meant I would be given magnesium and would have to labor in the bed. Since I was at the point where I could not handle a single contraction without standing and swaying, I knew I had to have an epidural.

So by 12:45 on Saturday I was in the hospital bed with a million and one tubes running into my body. Completely unaffected by the contractions, I slept like I never had before. After some time the doctors expressed concern about my failure to progress because of the magnesium. The decision was made to give me pitocin and then we began the attempt to find a perfect balance between contraction inducing pitocin and muscle relaxing magnesium. Of course you can't have pitocin in the mix without those troubling heartbeat fluctuations, so they dialed it down and waited out the 24 hours before the inevitable Cesarean took place.

I don't remember much of the surgery, I barely remember hearing him cry or seeing his face the in the operating room. I do remember waking up and not feeling a baby in belly for the first time in 35 weeks. A few minutes later they rolled my little angel into my room and it was all worth it.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Here He Is

I know it is has been a couple of months since I last blogged but I've been busy. LOL
Actually I or should I say we are still busy. Our little angel was born Sunday December 20th and weighed 9 lbs 12 oz. He was absolutely amazing and I was instantly in love. Labor is a story in itself and will be shared at a later date. What's most important is Thomas Joseph is happy and healthy in his home.My heart is beyond full and I am not sure if I can take anymore.