Thursday, January 15, 2015

{Cinderella}

My mom and I took Lucy to her first musical last weekend and it was amazing. My mom had told me weeks ago that Cinderella was coming to Cincinnati and asked if I thought Lucy would want to go. Of course I knew she would want to go, but I was a little nervous about taking my 3 1/2 year old to the theater. We decided to go for it and I am so happy we did. My little lady had an awesome time and was completely engaged for just about every moment of the show. She was a little confused at why the play was different from the movie, but she went with it. She was just enamored with Cinderella and Prince Charming and loved looking through her little binoculars from the 2nd balcony. There were tons of other little girls there (many dressed in Cinderella costumes - adorable) and they even had booster cushions for the kids to sit on which was super nice.
I played the part of Cinderella (in the same version of the musical) when I was in the 7th grade (or maybe 8th? I can't remember exactly). Then I played the part of Cinderella again when I was in high school at the awesome summer theater I used to do. That time was in the show "Into the Woods". I had told Lucy all about both of my Cinderella experiences and she just about thought it was the most amazing thing ever. So, on the way home from seeing it, she held my hand in the backseat and told me she wanted to be Cinderella on stage someday just like her mama was. My sweet girl.

Theater holds a very special place in my heart. I started at a very young age doing the summer children's shows at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music (CCM) and continued all through grade school and high school. I played some amazing roles throughout the years, met amazing people and made amazing memories. I did a few musical theater auditions for college but ultimately ended up being a music major with emphasis on voice. I miss the stage so very much and I hope to do some community theater in a few years when the kids are a bit older. For now, I am so happy that I have music/performing in my life through the Elvis group.

I can't wait to see what Lucy takes interest in as she gets older. She loves the ballet/tap class she is in now and she loves singing....so who knows. Maybe...just maybe...someday she'll be a theater geek just like her mama :)

{Dear Elijah | 5 months}

Dear Elijah,

Oh dear...I just want to cry. Time is moving so quickly. How did we make it to 5 months already?!?

You are growing at warp speed. My suspicions about a growth spurt last month were confirmed at your 4 month checkup. You weighed 14 lbs which means you gained almost 3 pounds in one month (taking you from the 7th percentile to the 18th!) The doctor was very impressed ;) I can't wait to see what you weigh at your 5 month checkup tomorrow. I'm just obsessed with your new little thigh rolls and the most adorable chubby cheeks and fingers I've ever seen. 
Your nighttime sleep has gotten a little wacky for about the last week and a half. I had a feeling the rug might get ripped out from under us eventually, but we sure did enjoy those glorious months of you sleeping through the night with complete consistency. You seem to have adopted a 4am wakeup (sometimes even earlier), but I can usually just soothe you back to sleep. I try to wait to feed you until at least 5:30 or 6am but sometimes that's just what you need to go back to sleep. I still can't complain too much, though, because you still usually go back to sleep for another 2-3 hours after you eat. It certainly could be much worse! And then there are nights like last night when you slept straight through to 7:30am without a single wakeup. I actually got a full night's sleep and it was glorious- thank you, my love :) We have finally stopped swaddling you and I suppose that could be part of the reason that you are waking up more, but I really don't think that is it. Either way, you just do what you need to do and it will all work out. I'm happy to snuggle you at any hour of the day, sweet boy.
Your naps are still all over the place. You like to go back to sleep about an hour after you wake up in the morning, but you usually only sleep for about 30-45 minutes and that's pretty much what you do throughout the day. You are what I like to call a "snapper napper"! Sometimes your mid afternoon nap is a little longer, but not much usually. You are usually happy when you wake up, though, so that is what matters.
People are always commenting about what a delightful, calm, playful and happy baby you are and I just can't help but thank my lucky stars. You just have the most easy going demeanor and you are always more than happy to just go with the flow. Your giggles and belly laughs are just magic to my ears and your smile could light up the darkest room. You're still completely obsessed with your big sister and nobody can make you laugh like she does. I can't wait to see what your relationship with her grows into. I'm sure there will be years that you just drive each other crazy, but I have a feeling that your bond will be strong and amazing.
You are a drooling machine due to the 2 bottom teeth you sprouted a couple of weeks before Christmas. You were a bit fussy for a few days when they were first starting to come through, but you really handled it like a champ!
You are now rolling over and around in all directions which means you can really get places now. I'll put you down in one spot on the floor and within minutes you will be several feet away just from rolling! It cracks me up watching you get yourself wedged in the funniest places. You love being underneath chairs and wrapping your little body around the coffee table. So silly! You are already working on getting back on to your knees, so I feel like crawling might not be as far away as we think. Eek!
Other things you currently love: bath time, being naked in general, toys that make noise, your sophie giraffe, chewing on your fingers (and anything else you can get into your mouth), soft blankets, grabbing your toes, being sung/read to, making silly faces, sleeping in the car, your binkies, the exersaucer/bouncy seat and lots and lots of snuggles.

Happy 5 months, my dear! You are SO very loved!

All my heart,

Love, Mama

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

{the most wonderful time}

Add this post to the "better late than never" column....but I just had to make sure I got one in about Christmas eve/day! We spent the holiday just as we have since Zach and I started dating almost 12 years ago. We started in Cincinnati on the 23rd and stayed there through Christmas morning. Then we left after presents and brunch with my family to head to Zach's parents house in Columbus. We did gifts with them and his brother before making our way to his aunt and uncle's house for Christmas dinner. It was certainly a bit of a whirlwind just as it always is...but honestly, we wouldn't have it any other way. We feel so blessed that we get to see all of the people we love and it still works for us for now...so why change it.

This was the first year that Lucy really got into the whole santa thing and it was so much fun getting to talk about his spirit as well as the story of Joseph, Mary and Jesus. She loved looking at and playing with the many nativity scenes we had around our home and she particularly loved making up stories about the three wise men. Too funny. It was so sweet to see her looking with awe through some of my favorite old Christmas books at my parents house on Christmas eve and watching the care she took as she picked out the perfect cookies and vegetables to leave for Santa and his reindeer that night. She is my reminder about how truly magical this time of year really is.

Elijah had a beautiful first Christmas and was a source of sheer joy, just as he always is. He woke up on Christmas morning to eat around 6:30am as he normally does, and then went back to sleep for awhile. We finally woke him up around 9:30 so he could join us for gifts. He must have been super pooped from the family party the night before :) His favorite gift this year was his Sophie Giraffe teething toy.

It was another beautiful holiday spent with our amazing families as we all shared in the joy and spirit of Christmas together. What more could we ask for?


Monday, January 5, 2015

{Literary Photography Project | 1/52}

I kept thinking that maybe I would try to do a 365 photography challenge this year but the idea really just seemed too daunting. I'm pretty sure I already take at least one photo (or a million) every day, but I I just wasn't sure about committing to posting every day. So instead, I decided last minute that I was going to take part in the Literary Project 52 that Kate Densmore (Kate Densmore Photography) is hosting this year. She will post a literary quote each week on her Facebook wall and the idea is to take a photo (or pick one from your archives) inspired by those particular words. Totally manageable, right?! Hop over to her page and join in the fun. 

{1/52}

Sunday, December 28, 2014

{fa la la la la}

Wishing you all a very merry and very belated Christmas! 
Love...Sara, Zach, Lucy + Elijah

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

{ho ho ho}

For the last few years we have attended the Breakfast with Santa event at our friends church. Lucy always has so much fun and of course it's always great when she gets to clock in some time with big guy in red. On the way there I asked her what she was going to tell Santa when she saw him. She announced that she was going to ask him for the movie "How to Train Your Dragon". I had no idea she even knew what that movie was. My guess is that they've watched it at daycare before, but who knows. In any case, that is what she decided she wants more than anything and that is exactly what my girl told Santa that day, even though she got a bit shy once she got on his lap (which totally beats the screaming fit that ensued last year!) I'm pretty sure Elijah told him he didn't need anything and that he was perfectly happy with his own fingers to suck on :)
This past weekend was our big family Christmas party with the extended family. It really is quite a large event and is such a blast. Lucy was over the moon when I told her we were going to get to see Santa again! I think we had at least 40+ kids there that got to see him and get a gift. Lucy's was one of the last names to be called and I must say I am super impressed with how patient she was while waiting. That's my girl.
 Elijah was patient as well waiting for his turn while hanging out with his Pop Pop :)
He didn't have to wait quite as long as Lucy for his turn. I can't get over how small
he looks on Santa's lap. And also...how real looking is this Santa?! Love it. 
Lucy soon got her turn and reminded him again about how she really wanted the movie 
"How to Train Your Dragon" and also added that she wanted a Minnie Mouse toy as well :)
Goodness gracious, I just love these babies so much and taking part in these holiday
traditions with them makes my heart go pitter patter!


Thursday, December 11, 2014

{Dear Elijah | 4 months}

Dear Elijah,

My sweet boy. You have been a bit fussier than normal these past few days and I decided I would go ahead and attempt your 4 month mini photo session anyway. There were less smiles than usual, but I adore your serious facial expressions just as much. I did get a few quirky little half smiles (see above photo) and lord knows I love those too.
I am suspecting a growth spurt of some kind is the cause of your mild fussiness. You've been eating almost every 2 hours instead of 3 and your daytime naps have been a bit screwy. My suspicions about a growth spurt were confirmed when it took me four tries to find a pair of pajamas that fit you last! Seriously- these were all ones that fit you less than a week ago. You are my healthy, growing boy! You seem to be feeling more like yourself today...smiling and happy!
You really are just an absolute joy to be around. You are changing and growing SO quickly and your sweet little personality shines more and more each day. Your smile is ridiculously amazing and infectious and don't even get me started on your little laugh! I have actually heard some amazing belly laughs in the last couple of weeks and they just about make me die of happiness! You are super chatty lately and I can just imagine the amazing stories you are trying to tell us. It's so neat to hear your little voice coming out.
Your 4 month checkup isn't until next week, but I'm guessing your weight is somewhere in the 13-14lb range. You are in a mix of 0-3 and 3-6 month clothes. You have a long torso, but short little legs which means your pants usually have to be rolled up. You have just filled out so much in general! You are eating about 5oz in each bottle during the day and a 6oz bottle at night to help get you through the longer stretch. There are definitely times when I wish I was still nursing you, but then I have to remind myself about how hard and frustrating it was for both of us and that this is working so much better. You're happy and healthy and that is all that matters.
In general, you are getting into a bit more of a nap schedule these days. You're taking 3-4 naps or so a day lasting anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours. Sometimes an even longer one will sneak in there from time to time. You really don't nap super well in your crib and you much prefer to snooze in the Rock 'N Play during the day with a soft blanket snuggled up against your cheek. You're still a great night sleeper these days. You go to bed anywhere between 8 and 9pm and you'll wake up to eat around 6:30am. After that you'll go back to sleep for another hour or 2. Every now and then you'll wake up in the middle of the night, but usually all you require is someone popping the binkie back in your mouth (we call it "plugging you in". haha) We still swaddle you up tightly like a baby burrito and you still sleep on the contoured changing pad. We're afraid to change anything for fear that your sleep pattern will get messed up, but we know that we won't be able to swaddle you forever! You are generally pretty easy to put to bed once you are ready and I just adore our night time routine. It is always such a peaceful way to end the day.
You started rolling over from your back to your belly a few weeks ago! You definitely love showing off your new party trick, and I just love watching you flail your arms and legs around once you're on your belly. It makes me want to laugh and cry all at once. You're just growing up too quickly!!
You are super playful these days and are definitely requiring a lot more entertaining, which makes working from home more difficult, but I am still loving having you around as my little work/play buddy all day. It feels so great to not have to leave you during the day like I had to when Lucy was a baby. Some days I really have a hard time getting anything productive done, but I still wouldn't change it for the world right now. I do have people I can call when I need someone to watch you for a few hours on the the days when I really need to hunker down, so I feel very blessed for that!
You currently love: bath time, rolling over, drooling like crazy, watching and laughing at your big sister (she is seriously your favorite person ever!), grabbing toys, playing on your rainforest playmat, being naked, christmas lights and flirting with anyone and everyone. You are quite the little charmer, my sweet.
Words really cannot even express how madly in love with you I am. You such a bright light in our lives and bring us endless joy each and every day. May you always know how truly special you are.

All my heart....forever and always,

Love, Mama