22 Things I Love about You

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1. I love how you read your books out loud.

2. I love your love for ice cream and shout “ice cream” when you know you are going to eat some.

3. I love the fact you love to jump.

4. I love that you still enjoy listening to Taylor Swift and can sing it to yourself.

5. I love how you want to do many things on your own.

6. I love how you try to taste everything before you decide whether you like it.

7. I love when you sing with your daddy as he plays guitar.

8. I love the funny face you make so I can laugh with you.

9. I love the fact you hate to wear tights and dresses.

10. I love that you sing “Twinkle, twinkle little star” by singing “Winkle, winkle little star.”

11. I love your adoration for anything alphabet.

12. I love that you love shoes.

13. I love your crazy hair in the morning.

14. I love your friendly “hellos” to every store check out person.

15. I love your quick baby wit.

16. I love your love of strawberries.

17. I love how you say “truck.”

18. I love how you call for momma or daddy in the morning.

19. I love your strange obsession with buses.

20. I love that you are a happy kid.

21. I love you.

22. I love that you are mine.

One year of Ruby

I know I’ve needed to blog this but I kept thinking that I need photos from her various parties (3 birthdays to be exact) in order to do so. Since we moved to Seattle last month, our life has been a bit out of sorts so we don’t quite have everything to hook up the camera and load up her pics. Then I thought, why? Why do I need those exact pictures of her birthday parties when the real celebration of my little Ruby girl is just her as she is?

My dear Ruby is now thirteen months. She is beautiful, funny, happy, intelligent, kind, and the best little girl her mommy and daddy could ask for. She lights up everyone around her. It’s hard not to smile! She enjoys saying hi to everyone and has learned the art of perfect baby kisses and hugs.

Ruby is now a walker! She takes many steps from place to place and is comfortable on her feet. She is in day care with slightly older toddlers, so I think she may have felt a little bit of toddler peer pressure. She still has a big smile and claps when she knows she’s walked a long distance. We’re so proud of her!

Ruby also loves to talk. She continues to babble in conversation form but now can say several words pretty clearly. She says: mama, dada, thank you, please (or “peas”), banana (or “nana”), Elmo (or “Melmo”), up, down, hi, bye bye, bubble, no-no, and yes. She can even sing the “Row Row” part in “Row, Row, Row your Boat” and loves to say “LMNO” when it’s time in the ABC song. It sounds more like “MNOMO” but we get it. She recognizes the letter A too.

She can put up one finger when you ask her how old she is, and she can point to her head when you ask her to.

She is also a fantastic eater. No seriously…this kid eats almost everything…HAPPILY! She loves fruit (especially bananas and strawberries), and even loves to suck on lemon slices. She eats all her veggies, but they have to be seasoned. I can’t think of one thing she doesn’t like! A and I feel very lucky.

Another thing is that Ruby is an excellent sleeper. She actually has been a great sleeper since a baby. She doesn’t fuss when you put her down for bed and she doesn’t fuss when she wakes up. She may not fall asleep right away, but we enjoy hearing her talking through the monitor to herself and her stuffed animals. She is a fan of her stuffed animals.

Ruby still loves music. She likes to dance when she hears some of her favorite tunes (and Taylor Swift is one of them). She likes to bang away at her piano, a gift from her Uncle Jacob and Aunt Katie.

All in all, our little Ruby is FABULOUS! We love her and can’t get enough of her. Even when I put her to bed, as exhausted as I am, I miss her and can’t wait to see her cute little face in the morning. Her daddy and I love being the ones to see her first thing in the morning.

Happy birthday little Ruby! You are the most wonderful little girl and we know the next year(s) will be the best of our lives.

10 months

My baby is now officially a  mini-kid. Seriously! She is tall and very mobile. But, before we discuss all of her most recent milestones let us go back a few months. I know Ruby will someday tell me how disappointed she is that I missed all the months in between 6 and 10. Well, I can say they were wonderful and I have the pictures to prove it. Not all of them on her blog, but I’ve got them!

Baby bath time

Let’s start back in December. Ruby’s first Christmas was fun for all of us! The holidays are so much more fun when there is a kid around. A and I enjoyed planning all the details from the meals to the stockings. It is not surprising that Miss Ruby basically won Christmas. She had the most gifts under the tree, which just shows how much she is loved by everyone. Santa also brought her a few books, bath toys, and her favorite puffs.

Christmas 2010 First Christmas

She enjoyed all the Christmas lights and ripping the wrapping paper off her gifts.

Also during this time, Ruby learned to not only sit up on her own but do her army-style belly crawl. She first would move a little very slowly, building up that upper arm strength. Then, she got really good and really fast. Next thing we knew she was full on crawling by the end of January and hasn’t stopped moving since. It all was such a fast development that it makes me regret not having a blog entry. I don’t even remember the moment it happened…it just happened!  This has brought an end to her bounceroo since she would much prefer crawling all over the house. She can pull up on furniture (and toys and people and cats etc.) This will soon turn into standing alone and then walking.

Two Rubys 10 months

Ruby went to the beach for the first time. We did have a sand-eating incident, which she loved. She wasn’t a big fan of the water. She freaked out a bit, but we’ll try it again soon.

First Beach Visit

Ruby is now in daycare. SHE LOVES IT! I’m so relieved that she enjoys her daycare as it has made my life easier. I feel guilty (as I believe most parents do) that I can’t stay home with her and be sure she is learning all the things she needs to know, but I am happy to report that her daycare provides her plenty of intellectual stimulation.

Lastly, Ruby is our little dancer. The girl loves to dance! It has been my most favorite development so far. I’ve been trying to get it on video, but she has been uncooperative when the camera is whipped out. The best moments are the ones that are uncaptured.

Sea of Laundry

(NOTE: Ruby loves to play with clean laundry. She takes each piece out of the basket and tosses it all over the floor. It’s been a great way to keep her busy for a while!)

One, Two, Three, Four Months and Teeth

Four months! My little R is four months!

Each month has been amazing, but month number four has been a fun one. She is officially no longer an infant and in full-on baby mode. She can now roll over, which she does constantly. She loves to smile and babble to everyone…or no one. She does the actual “gaga googoo” and lots of “aaahhhhohhhh.” At 5am A and I are usually greeted by happy talk and squeals through the baby monitor. She is an excellent sleeper. We are very fortunate that our little girl sleeps through the night, and even when she does wake up at 5 am she can happily entertain herself until we get up.

Some other new developments are that she drools and chews on anything she can get her hands on…which now includes her feet! My little monkey is fascinated by her feet, and so much so she puts them in her mouth. And, as you can guess, all the drooling and chewing is because she is teething. TEETHING!! I type it with exclamation and shock because this is very early. Most books say that babies may begin getting symptoms now to only teeth at six to eight months. Nope! Not my little girl! Two little white teeth have popped out, with one more coming in the bottom and two more coming in at the top. I say “What???” She is going to have a good set of pearly whites by the time she is one! Yikes!

R likes to kick a lot and loves to stand! I’m wondering if she’ll be walking before crawling, which most kids I guess do these days. Her legs are VERY strong, and I do remember the painful kicks when she was in the belly. She also enjoys her books…reading them and chewing on them.

 

She had her second dose of shots and her four-month check-up. She is on track and ahead! (Of course she’s ahead since she’s our kid! Wink, Wink). She is now 24 inches long and 13 pounds. She is about in the middle for height and weight, but her head is giant according to the chart. No wonder she is such a bobble head! She also had her first injury…caused by mom. Sorry R! We had a little nail-cutting incident. It was bound to happen with a wiggly child and those teeny, tiny nails.

 

R also had her first plane ride. We went out to California for my cousin’s wedding and to show her off to the family. She did very well on the plane. I think I was more stressed out than she was. It was amazing how many items one tiny little person needs. We kept looking around us on the plane and saying there was a baby explosion. Seriously! Bottles, diapers, blankets, toys…it was just everywhere. All told, she was a great traveler. She only had one meltdown each way on the plane, and it was right before we actually took off. We also didn’t have any trouble adjusting her to the time difference. She went to sleep when she needed and woke up when she usually did.

As for us, we’re doing well and surviving. Our life is still all baby, and I have a feeling it will be that way for a while. It’s either work, baby, or sleep. A’s 30th birthday is just around the corner, and we are taking a mini-getaway for it- R free of course. Although I’m looking forward to a little rest and relaxation, I’m already missing my girl and we haven’t even left yet.

Milestones

It’s pretty amazing how a kid makes you realize that there are really no milestones or big and amazing changes left in your life. That’s why prior to baby, time seems to go at a reasonable pace. But now, all my milestones and changes are counted in baby moments and all I want to do is yell “SLOW DOWN! LET ME CATCH MY BREATH!”

Ruby is 3 months old. I can’t believe how fast the time went. Just one year ago, Miss R was only but a fleeting thought in my head. She is now here and making me feel all misty eyed.

At three months, she is able to smile and do very small giggles (my favorite development of all). She can lift her head high and hold it there for a while when on her belly.

 

She has been able to keep her melt downs to a minimum, only really crying when she is hungry and/ or tired. She still eats pretty often, but it just means she’s growing big and strong. She’s already outgrown some of her 0-3 mo. old clothing. I admit, every time I realize a onesie doesn’t fit her anymore I want to burst into tears. I’m officially a mommy-mess.

 

Another milestone we’ve hit is my first long trip away from her (three whole days). Who knew it would be SO difficult? Well, maybe some of you moms knew. I did not. I thought it would be a little sad, but not to the extent that I’ve become almost an emotional basket case. Every kid I see reminds me of Ruby and I just want to turn around and go home. Unfortunately, this mom has to work to bring home some of the bacon. It’s been a challenge to be a full-time working parent. At times I feel like I’m spread a little thin and not able to give enough to any one particular task or person, which is something I’m not used to. I’m sure it will get better with time and practice.

Oh! And here is a picture of A and me, just in case you were wondering if we still take pictures of us anymore. We do!

What? There’s a life besides baby?

A and I never wanted to be those people who have nothing else to talk about besides their kid. But, guess what? We ARE those people. Don’t worry people! I’ve noticed it! No one needs to tell me that all I seem to talk about is my child, how tired I am, breastfeeding, infant sleep patterns, etc. I mean, look at this blog? Is there the word “Ruby” or “baby” anywhere in the title? Nope.

However, I do have an excuse. I seriously have had NO LIFE besides Ruby since she was born. What have I done that hasn’t been Ruby-related? Nothing. Where have I gone that hasn’t been Ruby-related? Nowhere. My whole little world has revolved around her. I’m not complaining. I think it’s just the nature of having a little one at home now. However, my fingers are crossed that my life does begin to branch out a bit more.

I’m back to work this week, which has been challenging. I am amazed at how I can really organize my day and cram in every minute with something to do. There is no such thing as naps or down time when there are emails to check and paper work to catch up on (or blogs to keep up with). It hasn’t been fun…not that it was expected. It makes me envy stay-at-home mothers or rich people who have a live-in nanny.

Miss Ruby had her first set of shots this week.

So sad!! We discussed the possibility of spreading out her shots with our trusted doctor, but he convinced us that it was perfectly fine to keep her to the recommended schedule. I’m actually a little thankful we did since I’m not sure our poor girl (or her parents) could have handled spreading them out. She took the shots like a big girl, crying only for a few minutes once they poked her. It broke our hearts just a little to see our baby scream and turn red. However, she fell fast asleep. It wasn’t until she really woke up hours later did she start screaming (again) because of the discomfort in her leg. Tylenol helped, thankfully.

Her stats for her 8 week check up:
weight- 10 lbs, 1/2 oz.
height- 22 in.

However, she is nine weeks this week.

 

As you can see, Ruby loves to pose for the camera! Not much has changed except she really is able to pick up her head fully while on her stomach and hold it up for a few minutes! I am so proud!! She also smiles so much more these days and we think (knock on wood) that her fussy crying is diminishing for the most part. She seems to be able to stay awake without crying for longer periods of time. If she does cry, we’ve noticed it’s because she is hungry or tired (normal for a baby), not so much out of boredom. She’s over all a pretty laid back kid now. She loves ceiling fans. I mean, really loves them. She smiles and laughs for the ceiling fan more than for us. She is also entertained by all the cooking shows that I have on during the day. Her favorites are Giada and Nigella. I think she enjoys their voices. I’m hoping by the time she is five she’ll be able to cook us dinner!

Awhile ago I gave myself a mini-photo project. I took one picture a day that seemed to capture the moment of that day. I think I’m going to do this again since I had a good time with it. We’ll see!

Six Weeks

I can’t believe my little girl is almost at the two month mark! Where did the time go?

Miss Ruby has been growing up so fast before our eyes. It is absolutely amazing to see all the changes that have been happening. So many parents have told us how fast kids grow and to enjoy every minute of it, but it is hard to really understand until it happens in your own little family. She really does change and grow quickly.

 

So, what is Ruby like at six weeks? First, she looks so different from her first week at home. She lost all the swelling in her face and her features are starting to really show themselves. She’s also taller and bigger! The last time she was weighed (about three weeks ago), she was 8 lbs and 4 oz. She is probably closer to 9 lbs now. My little girl is getting so big!! I’m going to be sad the day I can’t hold and cuddle her completely in both arms.

 

She’s also been hitting all her development marks (and believe me, her mommy and daddy are keeping track). She can see very well. She loves to stare out the window, in her little mirror on her tummy time mat, and loves to watch Elmo on Sesame Street. She can follow our voices when we talk to her and read to her, and she even watches the itsy-bitsy spider go up the water-spout when we sing it to her. (She loves that song!) She is starting to smile a little more, which brings tears to our eyes because it is just so cute. Ruby can also lift and turn her head when on her tummy, and can scoot a little on her stomach. However, she does get frustrated easily. She is also starting to “coo” a bit, which makes it fun to have baby conversations with her.

 

We’ve been slowly adjusting to life as parents. We are fortunate to have a girl who can sleep long stretches at night. Even when she is up or when we put her down after a night feeding, she is kind enough to not cry and put herself back to sleep. One interesting thing is that she LOVES her music! She can’t sleep and stay asleep without her little nano playing. (I know, this kid already has her own iPod. But, there was an extra thanks to my mom.) We have a constant play list going all night and she just really likes it. Curious as to what this little girl listens to? She has the Rock-a-Bye Baby Smashing Pumpkins and Beach Boys lullabies, Baby Einstein Mozart, and a baby mix put together by her parents (which includes Coldplay, Joshua Radin, James Taylor, Smashing Pumpkins, Keane, Jack Johnson, Bob Marley, Feist, Jeff Buckley, Sigur Ros, The Cure, etc.) If you know us, you probably can figure out who chose each artist.

So this adventure continues, and although we’re always tired and at times frustrated, we’re enjoying the ride! I’m sure there is going to be more to report in the next few weeks. I’ll be sure to update again soon!

Ruby, Ruby, Ruby

She’s finally here!!

I know it’s been three weeks since our little miss Ruby was born, but it is hard to find time when you have an infant needing your attention. However, I wanted to be sure I blogged about the day she was born and the three weeks after.

Let’s start at the beginning. My labor story is not horrible, but it wasn’t a breeze either. I’m not sure how to retell it, but perhaps a timeline format will work:

4/27

11:30 pm- First start feeling contractions. However, I was told by A to wait and just go to bed, which I attempted to do.

4/28

2:00 am- Left for the hospital since the contractions were about 5-7 min apart.

2:30 am- At the hospital, 2 cm dilated and waiting in a hospital room to be admitted.

4:00 am- Officially admitted into the hospital, 3 cm dilated.

5:00 am- Get the much needed epidural! It was a LIFE SAVER! I didn’t feel a thing 😉

5-noon- Just waited, and waited, and waited…

Noon- Fully dilated and waiting to push!

Noon-4:00 pm- Some pushing, some waiting, some more pushing, some pain-killer issues, and more pushing…

4:00 pm- Started really pushing.

7:39 pm- Little girl makes her grand entrance!

 

Ruby Sun Harden
April 28, 2010
7:39 pm
6 lbs. 12 oz
19 in

So, that is the labor tale in a nut shell. There is much more in between, but you can just ask me about them if you need to know. All I can say is that it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be, but it could have been much easier. There are definitely things I’ll remember for the next time (if there is one…to early to decide)! We were VERY glad to wait to find out if she was a girl. I don’t regret that decision one bit. As for the pregnancy, part of me is glad to have some control of my body back but a small part of me is sad that this little being isn’t with me all the time. Now that I have a face to put to the little kicks and turns I was feeling in my belly, I realize that she had been with me for a while now. It’s a pretty amazing feeling!

A quick bit of info about where her name came from. A and I had decided on Ruby months ago. I had chosen the name from a Kaiser Chiefs song I had heard on the radio, and it just stuck with me. It was really one of the few names A and I could agree on. Her middle name- Sun- is Korean and means “goodness.” Yes, I did first get it from LOST (cheesy, I know), but I wanted her to have a name that reminded her that she was part Korean and I really did like the meaning. She fits her name and I know any other name would just not have been for her.

So now, nine months later little Ruby Roo has arrived and is now officially part of the Harden household. She has turned us all upside down- in a good way of course. We don’t get much sleep anymore (a given). Our lives are slowly adjusting to being completely absorbed by her. We are just entertained by staring at her and all her funny gestures and faces that she makes. As cliché as it sounds, we are in awe that we created this being and still can’t believe it.

She really doesn’t do much. She is probably awake (not crying or not eating) only about an hour or two a day. She is a VERY good sleeper, which A and I are thankful for. She sleeps through the night (not including her feeding breaks) and really doesn’t fuss too much. Trust me, she has her moments where we feel completely helpless as to what is causing her sad screaming. However, we know we will get through it all and figure out what needs to get done. The most challenging thing really has been breastfeeding. I have a whole other blog entry on that, so I’ll save what I have to say for later.

She is now three weeks and it makes me just a little sad to know she is getting so big so fast (again cliché but so true). She has gained weight and is taller (about 8 lbs now and 21 in long). I have a feeling she is going to take after her father when it comes to height. It wasn’t until I had her that I now understand the idea of savoring every moment. Time really does fly!

 

Whoa baby! 24 weeks!

I’ve left you all hanging for a few weeks, but honestly there was no real significant changes until lately. Roll that in with a week-sales meeting in Dallas and the start of school (which is super-busy time for me at work) and you get this late entry.

Let’s reflect back a bit before I show how huge I’ve gotten (and yes, I feel officially like a whale now). 2009 was a great year where A and I were able to not only get some home improvements going, but had no REAL big changes…besides baby of course. I guess what I mean is that 1) we didn’t move, 2) we didn’t switch jobs, 3) we never took any kind of real vacation, and 4) we didn’t make a big purchase of any kind. The baby I count as significant change for 2010. This past year was actually a pretty quiet year. I’m glad since I know this year will be the complete opposite with some things already in process.

I’ve still been feeling pretty well. It has all been by the book. If the What to Expect book says it is going to happen, 99% of the time it’s happened. The only problems lately have been sleeping and back aches, which I only expect to get worse. However, there really isn’t much to complain about since it’s been easy compared to what most women have to deal with. I finally have had to buy maternity clothes. This has been more challenging than expected since I’m at this wierd size. I’m too big for my current clothes but the maternity clothes don’t quite fit correctly. I mean, my belly fits but the rest of it just doesn’t quite fill out. The belly band has still been my best friend, along with stretch pants and loose tunic-type tops. I’m still eating the same. That hasn’t changed too much. I might snack a bit more lately and found my stomach growls more often and more loudly. Nothing a bowl of cereal or a piece of toast can’t cure. My sweet tooth has kicked up into high gear with constant cake cravings and smoothie cravings. I indulge a little…why not right?

I also now talk to the baby all the time. Most of it is to apologize for my yelling at bad drivers, but other than that I check-in with little peep most of the day. I know now s/he can hear our voices and all noises that are going on inside an outside of me. I have noticed that s/he will kick and roll more with loud tv, movies, and music. It is all wierd and fascinating still.

We’re almost through with the second trimester. I can’t believe how fast it has gone! Here are the latest pics:

24 weeks

 

I’ve gained about 15 pounds, which means I’m right where I’m supposed to be. My crazy control freak self is trying really hard to accept this weight gain since I am growing a whole person inside me, but it is still hard to look at myself in the mirror and recognize me. It sounds so trite and superficial (it is really) but I’ve been so used to a particular weight that I just get astonished by it and look forward to the day I can go to the gym and get my body back.

The baby should be about 1.5 of that. He or she is about 8.5 inches so s/he is getting bigger! Little peep is still moving like crazy, making it slightly uncomfortable at times. S/he is starting to gain baby fat and the baby’s organs, bones and muscles are also growing. Little peep has almost fully formed facial features and a touch of hair, so it already may look like A or myself. We’re so curious!

9 weeks

We’re at 9 weeks this week according to our doctor. We had our first doctor’s appointment, which was very uneventful. I had a pap test…fun! And, at least we were able to hear that all the tests so far show we are a-okay. We’ll have our first ultrasound in about a month. We could have done it a bit sooner but A will be out of town for school and I just can’t imagine doing it without him.

I’ve been feeling a bit more pregnant lately. Mornings, as expected, are worse than other times of the day since I haven’t eaten for a longer period of time. However, I do feel pretty sick the entire day. It isn’t bad enough to stay home but just bad enough for me to not feel quite myself. I try to eat six small meals a day, but that is even hard since I really just don’t feel like eating. I still go to the gym and that actually helps a lot. It is difficult to get myself there, but once I’m there I feel so much better.

I have my first set of cravings…ice cream bars, guacamole, chicken and tuna salad, peanut butter, and fruit, fruit, fruit! I can’t seem to get enough fruit, especially peaches, grapes, and pineapple! It’s the only thing that ever sounds the least bit appetizing. I’ve also had my share of food aversions. These are strange because it’s things I actually really love- scrambled eggs, bbq sauce, anything grilled, and coffee. Yes! Coffee! I’ve had to switch to tea. It’s all so bizarre to me.

Here are the 9 week pictures (excuse the mess…our bedroom is the last room now that needs the new flooring):

As you can see, there isn’t much change. My stomach looks a little fuller to me, but I really think it’s mostly a pizza baby in there because of dinner last night. The baby is the size of a green olive this week. It has also graduated from embryo to fetus. Yay baby! Congrats! He or she is developing his/her  head, muscles and little baby limbs. We’re in the last month of the first trimester…exciting!