We’re still here!

ohhey. We’re here still. Life, as a cliche, as been crazy.  I have a lot I want to talk about, but I figured the best way to get going is to just type something. I know I owe you all a 9 month update for real. But I wanted to at least drop her stats here before I forget.

5/30/13

Height: 29.5″ (50-75%)

Weight: 20.4 lb (75%)

Head: don’t remember, but I know it was 95%+ as always

Shots: nada!

Big milestones over the last month or so include crawling. and pulling up on everything. and not sleeping. and TEETH! two of them, on the botton to be exact.

Yes, we had her 9 month appointment almost 3 weeks ago, because my baby is almost 10 months old. no. not possible. Seriously. I’m having major issues coping with this.  I feel like I say that every month, but it’s just worse the past week or so. I dont ‘know what it is- maybe the teeth? the crawling from room to room? the pounding on doors and understanding that there’s someone/something on the other side she wants? Maybe it’s the glimpses of her stubborn, wise personality- you know, the one I’m going to dread when she’s a teenager.  Payback and all that.

Seriously though.  I feel like I’ve missed so much of her life, and it’s a hard thing to come to terms with lately.  All of a sudden I don’t have a baby anymore. I have a little person living with us. A little girl who already is so full of curiosity and opinions and love.  I often catch myself just watching her expressions, trying to figure out exactly what’s going on in that little noggin of hers.  Wondering what it’s like to start to really understand this huge world we’re all living in.  (goodness knows I, at 27, really have no clue what it’s all about.) I love watching her sneak up on Puckett and squeal in delight and pride when he jumps after she grabs his tail.

There are so many moments that make me catch my breath. So many moments that make me realize just how blessed we are, and just how much I have to look forward to.  But for now? I want my little girl to be a baby. To cuddle up and grasp my finger while she nods off to sleep.  If anyone has suggestions on how to freeze time, please send them my way.

Happy 2013!

Here’s that cliche New Year’s post, where I tell you all about my goals and ambitions for 2013 (I hate the word resolution for some reason.)  So here you go; some random musings about what I hope to see in the upcoming year:

*Absorbing as many moments as possible with my family, including the pups, husband, and Baby Girl.

*Keeping up this blog more, so we have a way to remember all these days.

*Reaching out to friends- reconnecting with old ones and hopefully making new ones as well.

*Being a better wife and mom (to both the human and pet children.)

*Planning meals and sticking to a budget.

and the stereotypical pay off debt and be healthier.

With that, I leave you a brief Year in Review for 2012:

Thankful

So this is my stereotypical Thanksgiving post, just a few days late. But better than nothing right? I’ve been thinking the past few months about just how different our life is than a few years ago. In the last two years, we’ve gotten married, bought a house, adopted another dog, switched jobs, and had a baby. heyyo. That’s a lot. And, although it has been stressful at times (I won’t lie- it’s been really hard at some points), I can’t imagine my life being anywhere else. I’m a huge Christmas fan and love the whole feel and energy that surrounds the next month or so.  It’s cheesy, but it really does put me in a better mood and make me realize just how much I have to be thankful for.  I’m not very good at expressing my feelings, and I want to be better about putting things in writing. So, without further ado, here’s my list for the year.

Internet strangers: may sound like a weird one, but some of my best friends are people I’ve  met through online message boards.  From girls I met while planning the wedding, who I’m still friends with 3 years later… to new moms I met during pregnancy.  There’s something special about friendships with people who are going through major life changes at the same time, who understand what you’re going through.  It’s so great now to have a group of people I can turn to when I have questions about raising a baby; people who don’t mind talking about puke and poop and all sorts of other inane things.

Family: I am so thankful for my family who have been incredibly supportive of Jeremy and I during this new phase of life.  Especially my sister Becca, who I’ve gotten so much closer to the last few years.  I always worried that our age difference (7 years) would hurt out relationship, and I’m sure it did when we were younger.  Let’s face it, there’s not much a 17 year-old and 11 year-old have in common 😉 But the last few years we’ve grown much closer and I really love spending time with her and watching her find herself. Plus she makes an awesome baby (and dog!) sitter. 🙂

Coworkers: I have a few coworkers who I consider friends, and for that I’m so grateful.  There are some days I’m not sure how I’d survive the work day or week without them.  From random stories and crazy websites to morning coffee and donut runs to introducing me to awesome playlists via Songza (1990s High School Dance!), they make the days go by quickly and less painfully.

Husband: Jeremy is probably the one person I am most thankful for, especially these last few months.  He has been absolutely fantastic to me and Miss Lo. He’s helped out so much with her (I really don’t think I changed a diaper at all until he went back to work).  But almost more importantly, he’s put up with me and all the crazy hormones (and sleep deprivation-induced irrational freakouts.) Ok, and just my general orneriness.  He stood by me through pregnancy, picking up all the pieces around the house while I became a huge bum.  He gave me unwavering support during childbirth and continues to reassure me that I’m doing good with Miss Lo. He’s an amazing father and continues to be primary caregiver for the pups.  It sounds cliche, but I really don’t know where I would be without him as my partner. I can’t wait to see what fate has in store for us as we continue our life together.

Pups: oh, the devil dogs. the monsters. the douchedogs. I love them so much and they make me smile daily.  Even though I want to lock them outside at least once a day, I’m so glad they’re in our family.  Constant companionship- one or both would lie by my feet all night long. Something that made those up-all-night first few weeks of parenthood a little easier to bear. They’ve adjust well to having a baby in the house and I’m so excited to watch Miss Lo grow up and form her own special bond with each of them.

last but definitely not least…

Baby Girl: I don’t even know where to start. I was so nervous when we found out I was having a girl; I was 100% convinced it was a boy.  I don’t like girls; I’ve never been a girly girl. But the second she was born, I just felt… calm. All those cliches came true- I felt like I’d known her forever. Like this was all meant to be, like it would just work out. Yes, of course there have been some really hard days and weeks, but I wouldn’t trade them for anything. (hindsight is 20:20 and all that, right?) I truly cannot imagine life without her.  I am in awe of every little thing she does- first smile, the way she watches the world around her and how much she grows and changes every single day.  She’s made me more patient, more loving, and more appreciative of the little things and the big things in life. I am so thankful to be able to watch the world through her eyes.

And on that note, I’m changing gears and becoming a little less sappy. Here’s my materialistic thankful list 😉

  • my smartphone that keeps me entertained at all hours of the day
  • baby swings
  • Christmas trees and lights
  • snow
  • laundry machines  and dishwashers
  • wine
  • hair ties
  • mascara
  • humidifiers
  • caffeine

There is so much more that I know I’m missing. I continue to recognize each day how blessed I am.

P.S. I know. I haven’t even introduced Miss Lo to the blog yet. I promise it’s coming soon! Along with updates on all the other big life changes. I’m slacking.

Our Story, Part 2: The Proposal

I crammed about 5 years into one post. And now you get one post for just one day in our life. I’m going to give you the background and my memories of the proposal quick, then I’ll copy Jeremy’s version from our wedding website 🙂

We’d been dating 5 years at this point, and had been living together for a few months in our first apartment.  In October or so, we started looking at rings ‘just for ideas’ and Jeremy had me get sized for a ring at one point. I remember completely freaking out (both nervous and giddily excited.)  And then impatiently waiting for him to actually pop the question.

Flash forward a few months and we’ve decided to do a fancy date for an early joint Christmas present to each other- dinner and then the (new) Guthrie for A Christmas Carol.  That day at work, Jeremy had a dozen roses delivered to my office as a surprise.  I had a little hint that maybe he was up to something, but he did a good job convincing me otherwise- saying it was just in honor of our date that night.  When I got home from work, I was greeted with another couple dozen roses- again, he convinced me it was just to ‘make up for the lack of flowers lately.’ (I wasn’t really believing him at this point, but I didn’t want to get my hopes up either.)

The roses waiting at home

The roses waiting at home

As we were getting ready for dinner, he came around the corner with yet another dozen red roses.  Being oblivious like I am, I thanked him, said they were gorgeous and kept getting ready.  He had to point out to me that there was a ‘special’ flower in the bunch… in fact, a fake rose which held the ring.  (I’ll be honest, this is the part where it all becomes a blur.) I opened the box, he got down on one knee, said lots of sweet stuff, I cried, said yes, and we were engaged! (we’ll skip the part where we realize the jeweler sized it too small, we made a mad dash to the store to have them resize it during dinner, then still made it to the play on time!)

aaaand if that wasn’t long enough. Here’s Jeremy’s take on the whole ordeal (as he originally wrote it for our wedding guest website.) and a picture from our engagement session for good measure.

My wish to be romantic  brought me to the idea of using the widely accepted rose as the vessel for our engagement, but how?  Looking through a magazine my freshman year, I found a sterling silver rose shaped ring in a rose shaped box. Obviously being newly in love I thought, jeez thats pretty nice looking, so I bought it, not for the ring(which I discarded), but for the box which I knew would come in handy someday. 

So, 5 years down the line and after many trials and victories along the way to growing together, I felt it was the right time. My first act of Rose amazingness, was to send Steph a dozen roses at work, to soften her up for the date I had planned with her to see the Christmas Carole at the Guthrie. 

My second act was to buy many more roses (3 dozen) which I organized into a vase with the help of my friends Dan Zd and Susie, (NOTE: they did the organizing 😉 ). I also bought and set aside a final dozen to be given to her later. When she returned home, she knew something was up but enjoyed the vase, which I played off as a tribute to the lack of flowers I had given her for the past couple of years. As the time approached, I waited for a time to when she was totally preoccupied, retrieved the final dozen and nestled the ring box with ring amongst them. After presenting them, and the initial oversight by Steph for the outlier, I pulled the box out and presented it to her with a mildly prepared proposal to be with me for the rest  of our lives working together for our common goals, to which she tearfully accepted.

-Jeremy

P.S. if you want to see more of our engagement pictures, click here.

Our Story, Part 1

Like I mentioned in the very first post, Jeremy and I met during move-in weekend our freshman year of college. (cue the ‘aww’s here.)  That first night living in the dorms, one of my neighbors and I went down the hallway inviting everyone to dinner.  We rounded up a dozen or so freshmen and headed to Applebee’s for a fun awkward dinner, then wandered around campus for awhile.  It sounds cheesy, but I can distinctly remember standing on the west bank of campus by the bridge thinking “I really want to get to know this guy better.” Something about Jeremy made me realize we were going to be in each other’s lives for a long time. In fact, many in that group ended up being some of my closest friends the rest of the year and beyond.

First photo together

First photo together

We lived just down the hall from each other, and ended up spending lots of time hanging out with mutual friends/neighbors.   Eventually it became pretty obvious there were some mutual feelings. (But not before some uncertainty- read here for our first impressions.) Although we hung out for awhile before that, Jeremy officially asked me to be his girlfriend on November 12, 2004. (woah, that sounds so long ago!)

After that first year, Jeremy left the U to pursue another career path, which landed him at a local technical college where he graduated with his associates degree in Electrical Construction.  During his time at the tech school, he was involved in tutoring and eventually leading a few classes.  After graduation, he began working at the school while he returned to the U where he obtained a bachelors in education.  He continues working at the college, now involved in student success through advising.

Jeremy's graduation

Jeremy’s graduation

Throughout all of this, I also graduated from the U with my degree in Economics (that I have yet to use.)  I loved campus so much, and I was very lucky to secure a full time job working there after graduation.  Though I’ve changed positions a few times, I still work full time on campus, and still love my job.

That’s the quick background on us. Expect a few more posts where you get to meet the pups, and of course- Miss Lo!

Hi, everyone!

This is my/our new attempt at documenting our ups and downs on this crazy path we call life. A brief introduction until I can do some proper blabbing… my name is Steph.  I live in Minnesota with my college sweetheart-turned-husband, Jeremy.  Our life in a quick summary goes something like this:

September, 2004: meet during move-in weekend freshman year of college

November, 2004: start dating

2004-2009: lots of majors, apartments, and growing up

July, 2009: move-in together

December, 2009: get engaged

May, 2010: adopt the first pup, Puckett

November, 2010: tie the knot

June, 2011: buy our first house

August, 2011: adopt 2nd pup, Levi

January, 2012: find out we’re having a baby

August, 2012: welcome Miss Lolo to the family!

So that’s 8 years in a minute.  I’m thinking I’ll do a quick post for each of those so we have our family history in writing. Expect the rest of this blog to be a mix of baby stuff, home reno posts (when we actually find the time!), recipes, puppies, and just some random blabbering. I hope to use this as a way to document our little life so we can look back on it when we’ve forgotten these early years together.  Welcome to our family!

P.S. This is my second attempt at a blog. If you’d like to see the first attempt, click here.