Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Pretty Baby...

Just wanted to post a few instagram pictures of our pretty baby! I'm beginning to think that she may begin to answer to "pretty baby" rather than Londyn Grace! I find myself calling her that so often! :)

This morning she looked so big to me! Time slow down! I'm not sure I can handle this growing up thing!

The last picture cracks me up! Apparently she wasn't in the mood to have her picture taken! She was smiling like crazy and then put her hand over her face when I snapped the picture!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Three Months! (and an RSV update)

Our Londyn Grace!
Our Sweet Pea is three months old! So much has changed since her two month update! 

December was full of firsts for Londyn Grace beginning with her first full nights sleep in her bassinet! I laid her down at 11:00 and couldn't believe my eyes when the clock read 5:30 am! Since then most nights she sleeps from 11:00 to 6:00. Occasionally she will wake for a 3:00 feeding.

This month she has really started to blossom! Her sweet smiles are now accompanied by coos and even a laugh now and then! We love it when she "talks" to us! Daddy is epecially good at getting her to chat with him!

She is finally letting Mama put her down without fussing and has grown to love her bouncy seat! So much so that she even naps there occasionally! :) Naps are still hit and miss but definitely better than before!

Londyn Grace is still nursing every two hours but her growth in the last month proves its helping our peanut grow! I feel like we are finally starting to find our groove! 

She has grown 3 inches in 6 weeks! She is now 9 pounds 7.5 ounces and 23 inches long! (Up from 7 pounds 15 ounces 20 inches at 8 weeks!) She is able to wear 0-3 months clothes now! Newborn still fit her body but she is way too long for newborn sleepers and pants. 

Sweet Londyn girl did an amazing job for her Christmas portraits! (I will post them soon!) Her grandparents and aunts and uncles were surprised with framed pictures as a part of their christmas presents!

She is doing better with getting her clothes and diapers changed! However is still not a fan of baths! Speaking of diapers, she was finally big enough for us to make the switch to cloth! We are a month into it and loving it! (I will do a post dedicated to our experience so far with cloth soon!)

During the past month, she has visited the nursing home where our church ministers,  (the elderly there loved her!) attended a cookie exchange with Mama, stayed home with Mimi and Pop Pop while Daddy and Mama went out to dinner for our anniversary, and of course celebrated her first Christmas!

Unfortunately, December also brought Londyn Grace her first cold! Sneezing and coughing are no fun! She hates when she has to get her nose cleaned out with the aspirator. It takes both Daddy and Mama to get the job done.

It seemed to be getting worse and our pediatrician was closed for the holiday so we made an appointment with his back up doctor. He diagnosed LG with RSV Bronchiolitis and prescribed albuterol.  

The RSV diagnosis was pretty scary, but this doctor didn't act like it was that big of a deal. We gave her the albuterol for two days, but I did not like the side effects that came with it. It made her little heart race and she was wired! I decided that we wouldn't use it until we spoke with our regular pediatrician. 

We went to visit Dr. Schlachter yesterday for a previously scheduled well visit, and to get his opinion of the other doctor's diagnosis. Londyn was definitely coughing less and breathing better at this point. Dr. Schlachter examined her and told us that her lungs were clear and that her "RSV" was most likely just the virus that's been going around since before Hurricane Sandy hit. He said that most doctors label a lot of babies with RSV that really don't have it. Londyn Grace was sick and having trouble breathing from all the congestion, but she most likely did not have RSV. We are grateful for our doctor and his wisdom! We trust his judgement and are thankful that Londyn is on the mend!

The well visit portion of her appointment yielded great news as well! He reported that LG is "growing beautifully!" She is getting taller faster than she is getting heavier (hence 3 inches in 6 weeks!), but is doing well in both length and weight! According to his scale, she weighed in at 10 pounds!!! 

I asked him about when and if I should start cereal or oatmeal (first time mom here!) and he said she won't need solids until April at six months old and that even then he suggests fruits and vegetables over cereal. I also asked him to check Londyn for a possible tongue tie. She has a shallow latch while nursing and it makes for very lengthy nursing sessions, lots of latching and unlatching. After examining her, he reported that she is not tongue tied, but does have a small jaw which may prevent her from opening her mouth wide enough for a deep latch. He said it is not a cause for concern however since she is gaining weight!

Seeing her grow and change has been so wonderful! We are still in awe that this sweet little girl is ours!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

2012...Year in Review

I stole borrowed this idea from Elenie!

Since 2012 was our first year of marriage, I thought it would be neat to start this tradition. It was fun looking back through pictures and reminiscing over the events of the past year!

January - Marriage and Ministry

Eagle Rock 9/11 Memorial (NYC in the background)
We moved to New Jersey on December 30th. We began to settle into married life and find our place in a new ministry. It was the first month in 8 years that I wasn't in the classroom. Instead of lesson plans and tutoring sessions, I spent time getting our new apartment organized, planning meals and learning to keep house!

test # 3 :)
February - Two Pink Lines 

I didn't believe the first test so I proceeded to take two more. It was February 2nd, we had only been married for a month and a half but we were indeed expecting! I'll never forget that day! 

our house was expanding by two little feet

We told our parents and siblings on February 4th by hanging this picture in our apartment!

Our little peanut

March- Love at First Sight 

We had our first ultrasound and saw our precious baby for the first time! I was amazed at the distinct features on such a tiny little baby! It was already moving around on the screen though I couldn't feel it yet!

April- Easter and a growing belly

This month, We celebrated our Savior's resurrection and watched my belly start to grow! 

May- a California graduation 

View from the Santa Monica Pier
We began this month with a trip to the West Coast to see Uncle Matt graduate from Bible College. We were so proud of his accomplishments at WCBC! As an added bonus, California was beautiful!

At church, we saw the Lord work in hearts at our annual tent meeting.

View from the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library
To close this month, we were able to expand our living quarters! Up until this point we only lived in the top half of our house due to missionaries staying on the lower level. It was exciting to have more space especially with a baby on the way!

June - It's a Girl!!!

The highlight of this month was definitely our gender reveal party! I was convinced that baby was a busy baby boy, but Daddy's guess proved correct! We shared our sweet girl's name with our family and friends.

July - North Carolina & a Birthday

Mini Golf in Boone, NC
We headed to North Carolina at the beginning of the month. It was especially fun for me to share a place I've loved for so long with Daniel. We attended the Miller-Weaver family reunion, and I even volunteered to plan the next reunion in 2014! It was an added bonus to spend time with my sweet little cousin, Alyssa. She even felt Londyn Grace kick for the first time!
My Chicken Nugget & Mama feeling Londyn Grace kick!

We returned to PA just in time to celebrate Daniel's 29th birthday with his parents, grandparents and brother at a Lancaster Barnstormers baseball game!

We finished the month at the Summit conference in South Jersey. Three days full of preaching and teaching from God's Word was so encouraging to our hearts!

August- Sadness and Shower

We spent alot of time in MD/PA this month. Our first trip brought sadness as we said goodbye to Pop Pop Coale. He went home to be with Jesus after a long battle with Dementia. 

On our next trip Daniel was the best man in Matthew and Rebekah's wedding.

so many gifts! (and my Mamal in the corner!) :)
Then we returned to MD for my surprise baby shower! We were spoiled with so many sweet gifts for our girl!

In between all of this travel, we were excited about our first VBS at FBC. We had many visitors and saw several kids make salvation decisions!

September- Preparation and Prayer 

Labor Day weekend was spent preparing Londyn Girl's Nursery. I spent nearly the entire year prior planning it, but it was so exciting to see my plans come to fruition! Mama and Daddy came to help us with this project!
Beautiful Nursery

I was so happy with how it turned out!

look at that belly!
We also had a maternity pictures taken. Lindsey did a fabulous job and we will treasure them forever!

We took our childbirth classes this month and inched closer to October anticipating the birth of our daughter!

October - Londyn Grace Arrives!

We expected her around mid-October but she was ready on the third. I'll never forget the moment my water broke and calling Daniel to tell him! His initial reaction was "Are you sure?"

Londyn was in a hurry and my active labor was just under four hours! We were able to labor and birth at home just as we planned and prayed for!
Our family of three!

Our sweet girl arrived at 6:22 pm and was prettier than we ever imagined she would be!

Both my Mama and Daniel's Mom took turns staying with us during the first two weeks of Londyn's life! Their help was so appreciated as I was slow moving due to my stitches.

Londyn girl was also loved on by Pop Pop, Grandpap, Auntie M, Uncle Johnny, Uncle Ben, Tammy, Aunt El, Uncle Joe and lots of church family.

When she was two weeks old, we took her to Maryland and Pennsylvania to meet her great grandparents and other sweet family.

I turned the big 2-5, and we celebrated by taking Londyn out to eat for the first time!

November - Parenthood and Party

We learned (and are STILL learning) that parenthood was harder and more wonderful than we ever expected. With each passing day, we fell more in love with our Sweet Pea. I was blessed with the privilege of being a stay at home Mama, making a life long dream reality!

Grandpa and Grandma's Anniversary Party
In early November, we traveled to Grandma and Grandpa Hodge's 50th Anniversary Party in West Virginia.

I met many of Daniel's extended family members for the first time and it was, of course, their first time meeting Londyn.

Then we celebrated LG's first Thanksgiving in Maryland and Pennsylvania.

We praised the Lord for his abundant blessings and unending, undeserved grace!

December - Our Anniversary and  first Christmas

Last December, we were making last minute wedding preparations and then spent a week in Hawaii so we didn't have a tree.

our tree
This year, I was excited to decorate for the season. We went as a family to pick out our first Christmas tree!

We watched Londyn Grace blossom. Learning to smile and coo, she brought us so much joy in this new stage.

On the seventeenth, we celebrated one year of marriage. We left Londyn Grace at home (for the first time!) with Mimi and Pop Pop and went out to dinner at an Italian Restaurant in town. Then we did some Christmas shopping before heading home.

sweet smiles!
Christmas was spent with our precious family in Maryland and Pennsylvania.

On New Year's Eve, we retired early (we tire quickly these days!) and woke up excited about 2013!

Looking back, we are in awe of what our God has done in just twelve short months. It was a year of change. Moving to a new city (especially hard for this country girl), living three hours from family, serving in a new ministry, learning what it means to be husband and wife and then to be Daddy and Mama. Some changes were harder than others, but all the way we found our Savior's grace sufficient and presence real. We are so thankful for His gifts and pray that in the year to come we will glorify Him in a greater way!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Please Pray...

Our sweet Londyn girl was diagnosed with RSV Bronchiolitis today. She is one sick little baby. It is heartbreaking and scary to watch her suffer. She is coughing and sneezing so much. The pediatrician put her on albueterol for her wheezing and said it may get worse before it gets better. Please pray for our Sweet Pea.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Londyn Grace's 1st Christmas

our (faux) mantle
We started Christmas week at home in Jersey. Since we planned to leave following our Christmas Eve service, we opened our gifts to each other on Christmas Eve morning.

Daddy started by reading Luke chapter 2 to Londyn Grace! She sat on his lap and listened intently! :)
Our tree!

Mama and Daddy didn't buy much for her this year since she couldn't really open presents and we knew her grandparents and other family would spoil her rotten! We did get her a playmat that encourages tummy time, a caterpillar mirror toy, a bib, a fur coat (Mama couldn't resist it! It was on clearance!) a teether and a rubber ducky for bath time. 

Daddy helping LG open her presents!
After we finished opening presents, we made sure our bags were packed and all of the presents for family were wrapped! Daddy loaded up the car so it was ready. 

We had a great time at our Christmas Eve service. Daddy preached and we sang carols with our church family. After the service, we were excited about heading to Pennsylvania, but the weather changed our plans!

Daddy and his girl
The snow was coming down and the roads were getting icy so Daddy decided we would wait until morning. So we headed to bed early and got up at 3:00 am. Londyn Grace did so well! I nursed her right before we left at 3:45 and then she slept in her carseat the entire trip! There was absolutely no traffic which is almost unheard of here in Jersey so we made it to Grammy and Grandpap's by 6:30 (a new record!) 

Before opening gifts, we had Christmas morning breakfast with Grandpap, Grammy, Uncle Ben, Uncle Matt, Aunt Rebekah, Oma and Opa! Londyn fell asleep on my shoulder during the meal!

Sleepy Girl in her Christmas pjs
After opening gifts, it was time to get ready for our next stop. We packed up the car and headed to Mom Mom's house. Christmas lunch was ready when we arrived. We got to see lots of family there! Isaac held Londyn Grace for the first time!

Isaac holding Sweet Pea
We stayed at Mom Mom's for awhile after we finished lunch and then headed to Christmas Stop number three! Granny was excited to see Londyn Girl! We were also thankful that Uncle Joe, Aunt El, Aunt Mary Ellen, Andy, Angel, Briana, Micah and Benjamin were there, too!

We finished Christmas Day at Pop Pop and Mimi's house exchanging gifts with them, Uncle Johnny, Auntie M and Tammy.

It was a busy but wonderful day! It was so good to spend time with family and celebrate the birth of our Savior!

Londyn Grace was spoiled rotten by everyone. She received so many gifts  and certainly wasn't lacking attention even for a minute! In fact there was often a line of people waiting to hold her! :)
just a few of the people responsible for spoiling her! :)

We were able to spend the rest of the week there and tried to divide our time between everyone! The week went by way too fast and before we knew it we were packing the car again. It was filled to capacity with so many gifts! Our family is so gracious!

Our favorite Christmas gift!
As always, it was hard to say goodbye. We made it back to New Jersey by 11:00 Friday night and were definitely ready for bed!