Goodbye 2012

Monday, December 31, 2012

As I sit at my desk and count the hours until I'm home again and my little Vinny is in my arms, I'm reflecting on all the goodness 2012 brought to us. 

Let's recap, shall we?

I was keeping mum about my pregnancy since I was in the very early weeks still.   I was however telling a few of my closet friends in person.  The reactions and spilling the news was truly one of my favorite moments.  I love how excited my friends were for us.

We also signed the contract to start building our new home in January.  At the time it felt like the month of May would never arrive.  We were so excited to finally build our dream home.

We spent the beginning of February lounging on the beach with C's parents.  It was such a fun and relaxing get away.  While soaking up the sun on the beach I was trying to think of a creative way to announce our pregnancy on FB.  So I came up with this.

March came and went.  We had a lot of decisions to make regarding our interior choices in the house.  It was a fun but a little stressful.  The granite and back splash you choose has be perfect and something you know you'll love years to come.  No pressure.  Especially for the most indecisive person like ever (me).

April was filled with tying up loose ends on house decisions, packing up our t-house, photo sessions and, most importantly, hitting the half way mark in my pregnancy.  
Look at that bump.  And I thought I was huge then?  Ha, please.  If I only knew what I would look like a day before delivering I would definitely think I looked and felt tiny!

May was such an exciting month.  We moved out of our t-house and into our home.  Thankfully C's mom and my sister-in-law drove up from Illinois to help us get organized (weird, we are still doing that 7 months later) and unpack.  We were finally homeowners.  Such an amazing feeling. 

I had both of my baby showers in June.  One in Minnesota hosted by one of my besties and another in Chicago hosted by our moms.  They both were so perfect.  I couldn't have dreamt up a better shower.  We got so many much needed items and baby gear. 
My lovely friend, Natalie, also was sweet enough to photograph my maternity session for me.  Eventho I did not love looking like a house, I am forever grateful for these images. 
With only one month before our Vinny arrived much of my time was spent prepping and designing his nursery while staying out of the heat. Of course, at the time, I didn't know if Vinny would be a Vinny or not.  So I kept things gender neutral which was such a struggle for me.  But in the end I pulled it off and love the end result.  (Yes, I realize I haven't even posted my nursery reveal!  I'm on it, I swear.)
On a whim I also decided to chop off all my hair.  Who does that 8 months pregnant?  This girl.  Pretty sure the heat got to my head.  Literally.

Vincent Marc was born on August 23, 2012 at 10:44 a.m. weighing 9 pounds, 1 ounce and 21 inches long.  Life as I knew it got a lot sweeter.
We spent a huge part of September cuddling and getting to know our little man.  Both of our families drove up from Chicago to visit and help us around the house.  C's mom even stayed with us for a few weeks.  We are so thankful for all the help and time spent with family. 

My bestest bestie even flew up to Minnesota from Chicago, 7 months pregnant, to meet Vinny.

Vinny was baptized and all of our family came back up to Minnesota to celebrate.  He wore the same baptism outfit that C wore when he was baptized.  34 years later. 
We made our first road trip with Vinny to Chicago to celebrate Thanksgiving.  He was such a good boy and probably only fussed for 20 mins the entire drive. 
Back to Chicago to celebrate Vinny's first Christmas with all of our family.  This Christmas was a little sweeter than the rest.  To know me in real life is to know that I'm a Grinch when it comes to Christmas.  Not this year.  It's amazing what having a baby will do to you. 

So farewell 2012!  I will miss you and so thankful for you.  You were definitely our best year yet.  I'm exciting to see what 2013 has in store for us.  


Friday, December 21, 2012

Yesterday was my day off.  I love my days off spent with Vinny.  I crave them and when they arrive I soak up every second with him.  Yesterday was no different.  Except for the fact that he slept until 7:30!  Sleepy boy.  He normally goes to bed around 8/8:30 p.m. and wakes up at 6:00 a.m.  As I was patiently waiting for him to wake up, I didn't know what to do with myself.  I never have this kind of time on my hands.  Did I want to shower?  Catch up on laundry?  Clean the house?  Wrap Christmas gifts?  My options were endless.  Instead I decided to whip up some reinbeer!  There are two men in my life who I was struggling with find gifts for.  I figured what guy doesn't love beer?  Perfect.  Done and Done. 

I'm not a crafty person so this was huge for me.  I managed to work a hot glue gun for the first time in my life and walked away with only one burn to my forearm. 

I have to admit - they turned out pretty darn cute.

Go on.  I know you totally want to make some now. 

Victory is Mine

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

HUGE victory today.  HUGE!  I'm wearing my regular work pants!!  My work pants that I sadly stopped wearing somewhere around 16 weeks into my pregnancy.  I tried on these pants a few weeks ago and I couldn't button them.  Today, for shits and giggles, I decided to try again.  And, to my surprise, they buttoned!  They are a tad snug around the waist, but everywhere else they fit perfectly.  I still can't believe I'm wearing them.  I've been wearing nothing but leggings to the work the last month.

I definitely still have some work to do on my post-baby body.  I'm not where I would like to be just yet.  But, every week I'm starting to feel better and better about myself.  I don't own a scale (on purpose) so I don't know if I'm close to my pre-pregnancy weight yet.  I kinda doubt it.  I get frustrated with myself at times because the weight isn't coming off as fast as I would have liked it to.  But I have to remind myself that I had a c-section and my appendix removed 4 weeks after my c-section.  So, my body needed a little extra time to heal.  Or maybe that's just an excuse I give myself for it taking so long.  ;)

Today I'm just relishing in the victory that I'm wearing my normal work pants.  And heels.  And a polka dot sweater.  Today is a good day.

{instagram: court5}

One Year Later

Monday, December 17, 2012

One year ago today I woke up feeling 'off'.  The previous night C&I indulged in a few too many cocktails with friends.  So at first I attributed my off feeling to a possible hangover.  But as the hours passed I didn't feel hungover.  Just, off. 

So, while C was downstairs watching TV, I took a pregnancy test.  As I was waiting to see the results I knew in my heart that I was pregnant.  I just knew.  There's no other words to explain how I knew except - I just knew.  I felt it.  I kept myself busy with switching out the laundry while I was waiting for the results.  I came to the counter of the bathroom and looked down.  Two lines.  TWO!  Two lines meant I was pregnant :)

I was thrilled!

But obviously not convinced since I took two more tests just to be certain.  Those tests were, of course, positive as well.

Just as I was about to run downstairs and tell C the news I was overcome with feeling scared.  Just 7 weeks prior I suffered a miscarriage and had to undergo a D&C.  We were still coping with that loss.  I wanted so much to be happy and excited to be pregnant again, however I was so scared and nervous to go through another loss.  So after a few prayers and a pep talk to myself, I went downstairs to tell C that we were expecting, again.  Whatever was going to happen with this pregnancy was going to happen.  All I could do was pray and stay positive.  It was out of our hands and in God's. 

Now here we are, one year later.  A happy family of 3 (errr, 4 including Tiko).  We have a healthy, happy and ridiculously handsome baby boy.  Vinny has consumed our lives and has brought us more happiness than I could have ever imagined.  I'm a mom now.  A mom!  Something I never really knew if I would be or wanted to be.  Now I can't imagine not being a mom.  It's funny how much your life can change in just one year.

See, I wasn't kidding.  I did take THREE tests! 

Photo credit:  Natalie Kirby Photography


I logged in to blog about baby weight, the first time eating cereal and the holidays that are quickly approaching.  But instead my heart is too heavy to blog about those things. 

The shootings in Connecticut have really hit me hard.  I just can't fathom what those families are going through right now. 

I spent the weekend holding Vinny a little closer, a little tighter and a little longer. 

How does a person do such a thing?  To helpless, beautiful children.  I can't wrap my brain around it.  My heart hurts for the families. 

It's all too much. 

Crocodile Tears

Friday, December 7, 2012

As you know, we have a pretty sweet arrangement right now with Vinny.  I work part-time, 3 days a week.  Those 3 days where I'm in the office C is working from home and taking care of Vinny.  So we have managed to forgo daycare.  It's been a nice arrangement and we are lucky that we are able to have the flexibility in our jobs to make this work.

But I know it will have to come to an end eventually.  C will need to be in the office 5 days a week towards the end of February or beginning of March.

With that in mind - we toured a daycare yesterday.  GASP!  All of my neighbors take their kids to this daycare and rave about it.  So, going into our tour I felt nothing but positive thoughts.  We met the teachers and supervisor.  Everyone seems so nice and very attentive.  We checked out the room where Vinny would be playing and napping in.  It's nice and filled with toys so I know he would have a blast playing there.  However, half way into our tour, I just broke down and started bawling.  We are talking crocodile tears bawling.  I couldn't control my emotions or make myself stop sobbing.  Mascara was smeared all over my face. 

I was a mess.

I really didn't think that just taking a tour of a daycare would have caused such tears.  I didn't expect that and surely C was caught off guard as well.

I know it's not like we are dropping Vinny off tomorrow at daycare.  We still have some time.  But just the thought of someone else taking care of my baby other than C or I brings me to tears.  I realize that sounds super silly.  But, I'm a first time mom and all of this is new to me.  We have not left Vinny with anyone other than his grandparents for longer and an hour and a half.  So the pure thought of Vinny being in daycare for 3 days, 9 hours each day, makes my head and heart hurt.

Now I know there are so many benefits of daycare.  Vinny will get the socialization he needs, learn more than I could possibly teach him and make friends.  Plus, as much as I would hate to admit it, it's probably good for him to be away from mom and dad for a while.  But, emotionally, it's taking it's toll on me.  I'm sure every new mom has felt the feelings I'm having and can relate.  I just have to keep telling myself that this is for his own good and that it's only 3 days a week. 

15 Weeks Old

Look! I'm actually keeping up with my weekly photo shoots with Vinny.  *Patting myself on the back* 

Vinny is 15 weeks old and is getting so big.  He's so strong and such a handsome little baby.  Although, I might be a little biased :) 

This face makes my heart burst into a million little pieces.

He's absolutely fascinated by Christmas lights! So, of course, it gave me inspiration for a photo op.

***I realize lights are hot and are a danger to babies. The lights were plugged in for literally 2 minutes and were not hot. I would never endanger my baby just to get "the shot".***


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Nowadays I feel like every post I type is 'MishMash'.  I let too many days go in between my posts so when I do get a chance to blog, I feel like I'm throwing all my thoughts into one post.  I will get better ... or so I hope. 

  • I spent 30 minutes in my closet today trying on things to find something, anything, to wear to work today.  I'm not happy with what I selected.  It's one of those days where even a new shirt wouldn't do the trick.  I think I'm going to hide out behind my desk all day.

  • Vinny no longer needs to be swaddled at night to sleep.  It's all so bittersweet to me.  Now when I check the monitor he's always sleeping soundly on his side.  He's officially a side sleeper, just like his mama. 

  • I ordered my first pair of real leather riding boots yesterday (thank you Macy's friends and family discount).  This is huge people.  I have a plethora of boots in my closet.  None of which are real leather.  It's weird.  Or maybe I'm just kinda cheap?  Regardless, I'm excited for them to arrive on my doorstep.  There's something about real leather boots that officially make me feel like an adult. 

  • Which brings me to my next thought.  We have family photos scheduled for this weekend and I haven't even put thought into our outfits yet.  Normally I have these things planned weeks in advance.  I am at a loss as to what colors I'd like us to wear.  Do I want us to be super casual?  Dress up a tad?  Sport some heels?  Keep it simple with boots?  I just don't know.  This is where my indecisiveness kicks in.  I have 5 days to get it together. 

  • Hair day is tomorrow and it can't come soon enough.  I'm easily 3 weeks overdue.  Being a mama makes getting to the salon a lot trickier these days.  It was easy to bring Vinny with me when he was a newborn and slept the entire time.  But now that he's awake the majority of the day I don't think he would appreciate sitting through my hair appointment.  My roots quite possibly two inches long.  Good thing ombre is in style right now.

  • C&I have an appointment to tour a daycare by our house this week.  Hold me.  Tightly!  C has been working from home and staying with Vinny the 3 days I go into the office.  But we know that will eventually need to come to an end.  And sadly, probably sooner than we would like.  All of our neighbors take their children to the daycare we are touring so, if we like it, Vinny would have some familiar faces while at daycare.  Which oddly makes things a tad easier. 

Upcoming posts:
Nursery Reveal (yes, I realize this is sooooo overdue!)
Post Baby Weight Loss
Thoughts on Baby #2

3 Months .. WHAT?!?

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Vinny is officially 3 months old.  HUH?  For real?  Shut up.  How did this happen so quickly? 

Time just keeps going by faster and faster and as much as I try my hardest to slow it down, it doesn't work.  I now realize what moms mean when they say cherish every moment with your baby because before you know it, they are toddlers.  Granted Vinny isn't close to being a toddler yet.  But 3 months have gone by much faster than I anticipated. 

Vinny has filled my heart with more happiness and joy than I ever could have imagined.  I'll admit I was never one of those girls who dreamed of being a mom.  It was never something that was high on the priority list.  There was a point in my life where I didn't even think I wanted children.  But after suffering a miscarriage everything hit me like a ton of bricks.  I never knew how much I wanted something until it was tragically taken away from me.

And now, I can't imagine not being a mom.  Nor having Vinny in our lives.  It's like he's always been here.  I seriously have never loved someone so much in my life. 

Here's my man.  All 3 months of him.  And look, no iphone photos!

And I Call Myself a Photographer?

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

I have a confession to make:  I don't have very many pictures of Vinny.  Wait.  Correction.  I don't have very many pictures of Vinny using my fancy smancy camera.

This is unacceptable.  Completely and utterly unacceptable.

You would think that since I'm a photographer that I would have a pleathera of photos of my son.  Or, for that matter, have the camera in his face 24/7.  But, sadly, I don't. 

The beginning weeks can be blamed on the baby blues.  I got them instantly.  I cried and cried and cried.  Because of the blues, I wanted nothing to do with my camera.  Obviously that was a huge red flag for C and my mother-in-law that something was wrong with me.  But the blues are long gone.  And now my lack of photos can be chalked up to pure laziness.  And I'm ashamed to admit I let myself get so lazy.  I found it so much easier and convenient to snap a pic or 20 of him with my iphone than to grab my camera.  Even when my camera is readily available. 

I'm kicking myself for being like this.  It's hard to call myself a photographer when I don't even have recent non-iphone pictures of my son to show for. 

It might be a little later in the game than I would have liked, but from here on out I am vowing to be better and more consistent with taking photos of Vinny.  No more laziness.  Vinny and I are starting tomorrow with his 3 month photo shoot in his nursery :)


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

I have survived.  I am surviving. 

My first day back to work was last Friday.  I honestly thought I'd be a puddle of tears leaving Vinny in the morning.  But, surprisingly, I wasn't.  I think it's because I knew he was going to be with his daddy all day.  That makes this whole going back to work thing a lot easier on me.  I got in at 7:00 and by 9:00 I was ready to pack up and head home to see my boy. 

Yesterday was a lot easier than Friday.  I missed him, of course.  Like crazy.  But, with jumping right back into the piles of files on my desk my day goes by pretty quick.  Before I know it, it's 3:00 and I'm heading home.   Since Thanksgiving is this week I only have a 2 day work week.  Three and half more hours to go.  Not that I'm counting or anything. 

So with working only 3 days a week, coming into the office early so I can leave early, and having peace of mind that Vinny is in good hands with his daddy at home, I am doing good with going back to work.  Now once we have to put Vinny in daycare things could get a little messy.  I'm anticipating there will be tears everywhere.  But we'll cross that bridge when the time comes. 

And no post is fun without a picture.  How cute is my boy?  Ugh, love his little face. 

Part-Time Mama

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Well. It's going to happen. And soon. I will be able to go back to work on a part-time basis (3 days a week), keeping my medical and dental benefits. That's great news, right? If you asked me that questions 2 days ago, I would say absolutely. But, today, now that reality has set in, I'm a puddle of tears.

I don't want to leave Vinny to go back to work-even if it is part-time. I know I should be thankful that he will not be in daycare but with his daddy while I'm at work. But the fact of matter is that he won't be with me. And that pretty much is killing me. I know C will do a great job with him while I'm at work. And that's not even an issue. My issue is that I won't be with Vinny and do our day to day things together. It hurts and makes me sadder than I ever imagined it would.

BUT I want a paycheck. And unfortunately my firm isn't going to pay me to stay home and take care of my baby. So I have to go back. I just wish it wasn't this hard emotionally.

Sweet Dreams

Monday, November 5, 2012

Vinny's not a napper.  During the day he takes little catnaps consisting of 15-20 minutes.  Tops.  Unless he's in the car or out shopping with me.  Then he will sleep until we get home.  I don't mind his catnaps.  Especially if it means he'll sleep through the night (or just get up once during the night).  I rather have it that way than longer naps during the day and not sleeping good at night.

His catnaps are never in his crib.  Which is obviously all my fault.  He falls asleep in his swing, bouncy chair, pack n' play, floor, my bed - anywhere but his crib.  In weeks past I tried putting him in his crib to nap and it just resulted in him screaming.  So.  I never tried again.  (Bad mom, I know.)

Until today.

Vinny passed out in my arms while I was working on the computer.  My initial reaction was to put him in his swing next to me.  But, instead, I tried the crib again.  I laid him on his side (which he prefers) and slowly backed away from the crib waiting for his eyes to pop open and his screams to fill the air.  But neither happened.  So I did what any mom would do when their child napped in his crib for the first time.  I grabbed my camera.


Saturday, November 3, 2012

I still haven't heard back from my office manager on if I can come back part-time, with benefits. I suspect the answer will not be in my favor.

I'm single parenting this weekend as C is deer hunting. Poor Bambi. I hate that he hunts. But it's something that he lives for each year. I'm sure he can say he hates that I shop. Or goes to Starbucks too much.

Speaking of single parenting - I had a horrible night last night. Normally Vinny is such a good sleeper (like his mommy) and either gets up once or sleeps through the night. Pretty sure he was up every hour last night. It may have been his worst night yet. I'm hoping this was a fluke. Regardless, Starbucks is in my very near future.

With the hubs gone this weekend I will find myself at Old Navy cashing in my super cash and stocking up on some new clothes. I haven't been shopping for non-maternity clothes in over a year. It's time. Even if body isn't 100% back to normal.

I may or may not have eaten an entire pizza by myself last night. It was only 10 inches - relax.

I can't decide what I need worse right now. A pedicure or my brows waxed. This having a baby thing has limited my salon visits.

Vinny can't stop smiling. It literally melts my heart.

Best of Both Worlds

Friday, October 26, 2012

I have over 15 posts in my draft folder.  Apparently I've had a lot to say.  Finishing all those posts seems like a lot of work and time - which I don't have.

So.  Moving on to the then and now.   Lucky for you that you escaped my breast feeding post.

Vinny is 2 months old.  TWO MONTHS people!  I mean, how?  I feel like I blinked and he's holding his head up, smiling like crazy and quickly pushing the limits on some is his 0-3 month clothes.  It makes me sad and happy he's growing so fast.  Bittersweet is the only word that I find appropriate.

Just look at him.

So him being 2 months has me thinking of my work situation.  I can honestly say that I love love LOVE staying home everyday with him.  I've finally settled into a routine and I'm soaking up all his milestones.  However.  Staying home in your yoga pants can get old. (Shocking, I know.)  Oh and there's the whole not making money thing.  I only got paid for two weeks of my maternity leave so my checking account is beginning to suffer.  Especially since V&I spend a lot of time at Target.  And you can't walk out of there without spending $100.

I really thought I wanted to be a stay at home mom.  Mostly because the thought of daycare reduced me to a puddle of tears.  There is no way that I would be ok with some stranger soothing my child.  Especially when he's only 3 months old.  They don't know what his cries mean like I do.  And I'm sure every mom has these feelings.  But it literally feels like someone is ripping out my heart with the mere thought of daycare.

In talking with the hubs we decided, if my firm will allow it, that I would go back to work part-time (3 days a week).  Those 3 days the hubs will stay home with Vinny and work from home so we can avoid daycare.  For now.  Then I feel like I will have the best of both worlds.  I get to stay home with my baby and also get my work on and make some money.  Fingers crossed that my firm approves of this.  As of now it sounds like they might.  Which means more trips to Target are in our future. 

Hi ... Remember Me?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Remember when I blogged weekly? Yeah me too. I miss those days. Now my days are filled with a lot of this...

Newborn Photos

Monday, October 1, 2012

My lovely friend, Natalie, was so sweet to stop over and shoot Vinny's newborn photos for me.  As a photographer I truly wanted to do them myself.  But with recovering from my c-section, getting settled after being in the NICU and being exhausted mentally and physically, it just wasn't going to be possible.  I'm so thankful she offered because I truly cherish these photos.  I'm in the process of trying to decide which one to convert to canvas on our wall...  Any suggestions?


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