Thursday, October 29, 2009

Halloween Costumes!

How much do you love Halloween? For us, this year, it's all about our baby girl. We have a beautiful 13 month old that will be dressing up as a butterfly! I can't wait to see her walking around in her costume trick or treating!

At Kelly's Korner this week, everyone is showing off their Halloween costumes, past or present.

Brit and I also have costumes, and mine is a surgeon. Yes, it is easy for me to get scrubs and any supplies I would need since I work in an ICU at a hospital. So my costume will be very complete! However, I must admit that it's not the perfect costume.

I would really like to do something next year where Brit and I have 'couples' costumes. Maybe you guys can help me convince her! Her are the options I would LOVE to do!

Here is the first:


I think we'd be perfect Pirates! I think she'd be open to this one. At least I'm not picking a wench ;)


Gladiator and 300 are just racing through my mind with these! Can you tell a guy is picking out these costumes yet? Love this pair!

Star Wars

Now, this is the one that might take some convincing...Brit absolutely HATES Star Wars. HATES it! And on top of that, there are a couple fairly risque Leia costumes...but I guess that's just the Star Wars nerd in me coming through. Still, if I could manage to get her to agree to one of these costumes, it would be a great Halloween!

Has anyone ever done any of these combos before? If so, leave me a comment and let me know how it worked out!

Also, don't forget to comment so I can come see your Halloween costumes as well! I love getting more ideas!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Not Me! Monday

Baby girl is teething some more, and it has woken her up the last 3 nights. Poor thing, I feel bad for her. We gave her some Tylenol, Orajel, and then let her have some milk. Hopefully it won't last too much longer.

I was off from work Saturday, which was just enough time for me to mow and scalp my backyard, as well as trim the bushes and fix some other things up I had been waiting to do. It seems like it has rained for three weeks straight here, and Saturday was a nice break, as the sun was out and shining. 10 bags of grass I cut. 10! And guess what? Now it is thunder storming again. Glad I got it done.

For those of you that have been to my blog before, you might notice I have links to a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit website. I created this site to help parents of babies in the NICU who are overwhelmed by the sudden circumstances they find themselves in. It is aimed at providing them intro general NICU information so they can have some place to start.

Now for Not Me! Monday...

On Thursday, I did NOT grill tilapia for a very delicious dinner with my wife. Rice Pilaf, steamed veggies, and a glass of chardonnay to go with.

Baby girl did NOT wake up with teething pains, thus ending our romantic dinner. She also did NOT proceed to stay up for another hour and a half!

I did NOT finally, finally finish the final touches on my NICU site design...check it out at!

I am NOT a guy who likes practical jokes. :) So, when I went to scare a nurse at work on Sunday by sneaking up behind her, I was NOT equally as surprised when she shrieked in startlement. I did NOT jump back about 3 feet.

I did NOT feel bad for a nurse today who was so busy that she had to fight back tears as she took a much needed lunch break at 230pm. Hate when girls cry. Total soft spot for me. I went to check on her, she was okay :)

Hope everyone has a great Monday! Don't forget to comment so I can head over to your blog and read your Not Me's as well!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Fall Decorations

Brit always does a great job decorating our house with the seasons. All of our Fall and Halloween decor is out and it won't be long before Christmas makes its way out of the closet as well!

At Kelly's Korner this week, bloggers everywhere will be showing off their household fall decorations, so here is a little sample of what Brit has done for us!

fall decor

Our front door, complete with wreath and all. I think I need to sweep some...

fall decor

fall decor

Hanging from one of our doors.

fall decor

Dining room table centerpiece. We actually got this from my mom. Looks great, the photo actually doesn't do it justice!

fall decor

Kitchen table centerpiece. Of course, we have the butterfly present, the notorious fall icon ;) With Brit, everything is butterflies!

fall decor

Scarecrow by the fireplace. Looking way too peaceful to be made of straw and sitting by a frequently used flame thrower.

fall decor

One of our wall decorations. Have the different plates for different seasons and holidays!

What fall decorations do you have out?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Spaghetti Whoahs!

spaghetti baby

Baby girl got her first taste of real spaghetti last week. I kept trying to get this post up sooner, but something else always seemed to put itself in my way! Now, she has had baby food spaghetti before, and loved it...but to me, that is a totally different taste! Yeah, I tried it. Too sweet for me. Maybe that's why babies like it...

spaghetti baby

So, I just cooked some angel hair pasta and cooked some Ragu spaghetti sauce, and voila! easy spaghetti. Now, normally, if I was making this for myself, I would have jazzed it up quite a bit more...hint, crushed red pepper. But since it was for baby girl, the simple version was the best!

spaghetti baby

She absolutely loved it! She ate every bit of that spaghetti, and whatever she didn't eat, she was wearing.

spaghetti baby

Brit and I aren't up for huge messes usually, but this was totally worth it. Yes, there was spaghetti all over her, but surprisingly, none was on her clothes, and no messes anywhere else. Good little girl! I guess it was just that yummy that we dare not put it anywhere but our mouths!

spaghetti baby

Must. Get. All. Spaghetti. In. Mouth.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Babies and Not Me! Monday

Babies, babies, and more babies! My NICU has seen so many babies the last couple months. The sad thing is, we have seen so many premature babies...and multiples at that. Multiples? Yes! Twins and triplets to be precise. Normally, twins and trips are absolutely adorable and I love having them in our unit, but not when they are so premature. It's such a hard little life for them.

Due to certain HIPPA rules, I can't really go into too much detail, but I can say that recently we have had to say goodbye to more than a few of our tiny babies. Some go for surgery, and others find their way to Heaven...but regardless, it's very hard no matter which path they take.

My heart yearns for the parents. I've not had to go through having a baby in the NICU, but I am immersed in it every day I am at work. While you have to stay focused and professional to deliver the best care for a baby, you cannot help but become just a little emotionally invested in the tiny child and their family. My prayers go out to all those parents and families finding themselves surrounded by these circumstances.

Although it has been bleak of late, ultimately our NICU sees a very high ratio of growing, successful premature and sick infants that graduate from our unit and go on to lead healthy, normal lives. It is an amazingly rewarding experience, and I pray that each baby that comes into our unit reaches that full potential.

Whew, that said, on to Not Me! Monday!

If you are not familiar with Not Me! Monday, head over to MckMama's blog to join in on the fun! I have been participating in Not Me! for quite some time now, so I know once you head over, you'll be returning to visit MckMama and her family time and time again!

Earlier tonight, I most definitely did NOT blow my nose in my sock I had taken off because I couldn't find a kleenex. I know, I know...gross. Believe me, my wife informed me as much, and was not shy about expressing her disgust!

Our cat, who is 1.5 years old, did NOT pee in our daughter's crib and on her blanket. Big problem, we're looking at permanent solutions to remedy this. Largest thing I feel is he needs another cat to play with. I'm sure I'll hit this topic again in the future.

This morning, I did NOT turn on the radio on my drive to work and catch myself singing to "Natural Woman", which was playing on the oldies station. As soon as I did NOT catch myself mouthing the words, I quickly turned my CD player on to Jason Mraz and Jack Johnson to man-up for a bit.

And just now, I definitely did NOT drool a bit as I yawned from sleepiness and typing this post at 1221am. See, I know I won't type it in the morning since baby girl will keep me busy. Have to post when I can!

All kinds of attractive qualities for me, huh?

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Feeding Baby at Night - Dad Can Help Too

How often do I hear that dads do not feed their baby at night? Far too many! Mostly, I hear that the mothers are the ones to get up and feed their infant in the middle of the night.

Babies, from 0 to 6 months, may require feedings in the middle of the night, especially the first three months of life. I really cannot tell you how often I am told by moms that their husbands do not get up to help with these feedings. For shame, dads!

Dads, why are you sleeping?

When I ask why they sleep through the night while mom is up feeding the baby, most mothers give two reasons. The first I hate, because it is such an ancient thought. The thought is that it is a mother's duty to feed the baby. If a baby wakes up in the middle of the night because it is hungry, some men feel it is a woman's duty and job to get up and feed the baby. Wake up dads, the times have changed!

The second reason is the most common, and it is that there is a general feeling from moms that dads simply don't realize how tired they are, and how much of a toll taking care of a baby takes on their body. Moms who have been taking care of the baby all day can get physically and emotionally exhausted, and waking up in the middle of the night for a feeding only furthers that weariness.

Maybe we as men are born oblivious, but that is no excuse. There is a sense of awareness that we possess as well, we just need to focus that awareness on mom and baby.

Guys, I am telling you that as fathers...and as men, it is our duty to help in childcare as much as possible. In this day and age, it is no longer a woman's sole responsibility to care for the kids. Especially when it comes to babies.

We have to realize that the mother of our precious baby is more than likely physically and emotionally drained at times. They need to recharge, and they need their rest. So that means they need to sleep at night just as much as we do.

How to get up and feed your baby in the middle of the night!

Here is my suggestion, and it worked very well for my wife and I. For the feeding that occurs in the middle of the night, which I put at 12am to 4am, I would get up and feed the baby so my wife could have some solid, uninterrupted sleep. She would take the feedings immediately before and after.

I would get up and get my baby, and then head downstairs with her to warm up a bottle of milk. A hungry baby is usually a fussy baby, so by taking her with me, not only was I comforting her, but I was also leaving my wife with peace and quiet, so the fussy, hungry baby would not wake her up.

The bottle of milk I warmed up was milk my wife had pumped earlier, so it was ready for me to use. Moms, here is where you can help this having milk available, either breast milk or pre-made formula, it makes it that much easier for dad to get up and feed the baby. Dads, for added bonus, you can help prepare the bottles prior to the night's feedings.

When the bottle was warmed, I would take my daughter either to her rocker or back to our bed, and I would feed her. She usually would fall right to sleep after finishing her milk. Then I would slip back into bed, and sleep as much as I could to rest up for the next day.

Become a better father, husband...become a better man

I'll be honest, there were nights where I swear I was half asleep as I was preparing milk. One time I even stuck my hand in some boiling water and didn't even realize it for a few seconds, until the searing pain made me yell out a few choice words. But over time, as I got used to the schedule, it got easier and easier. There were times I could even anticipate her needing to eat, and would wake up right before she started getting her hunger fussiness.

Guys, there is no better feeling than when your wife comes home, and she tells you a story about how she had told her friends that you get up in the middle of the night to feed the baby so she can sleep, and they say how lucky she is. Anytime someone tells your wife how lucky she is for something you do, you know you are doing something right, and there is a sense of daddy and husband pride that makes it all worthwhile.

Dads, I am encouraging you to be that husband and father that goes the extra mile. Be aware of when mom is tired, and when she needs her rest. If you are dead beat and exhausted, I'd be willing to bet money she is just as exhausted, if not more so.

Can moms get up and feed the baby? Absolutely, hands down, yes. Mothers are superheroes in my book, because you cannot say enough to describe how much they do. When it seems they have run themselves as far as they can go, they find a way to keep on running. Moms, you all are awesome.

But dads, let's be more aware, and help out the precious woman in our life. Try helping feed the baby at night. Let your angel wife get some pure, solid sleep. Let her rest. By doing this, we become better fathers, better husbands, and better men.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Toddler Tales - State Fair Photos

Last week we went to the state fair, but I am only now getting to post it up! Baby Girl had a great time, though I'm pretty sure she was frustrated that she was confined to her stroller for the most part.

Normally, Brit and I love watching several of the shows, but this year, since we had our baby girl along with us, we had to skip them.

We both got our corn dogs, and Brit had caramel apple slices. I got my usual cotton candy to eat on the way home.

Baby Girl's favorite part of the fair was when I took her to play in the water fountain that was next to the auto show. I held her and let her splash her feet in the water. She let me know her displeasure when we eventually had to leave the fun fountain behind.

At the auto displays, I made sure to checkout the Chevy Equinox, which is their 32 miles per gallon SUV. Starting at $22k, it's not a bad deal at all. I loved it! But not time to buy a new car yet, so I will have to wait.

Below are several of our photos. It was a great day out at the fair with our baby girl!

toddler baby girl

Baby girl rolling into the fair! She's excited!

toddler baby girl

Looking at the MOO cows

toddler baby girl

Baby girl getting brave

toddler baby girl

Family shot!

toddler baby girl

She wanted it, but daddy just let her pose with it. I tore off a couple pieces for her :)

toddler baby girl

Mommy and daughter!

toddler baby girl

The fun fountain. She loved it!

toddler baby girl

Pretty woman, pretty flowers.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Toddler Tales - Baby Girl's First Words

Since our baby girl is 13 months old, I thought I'd share a list of her entire vocabulary thus far, at least the word we can understand! She is just talking up a storm now, and more and more it is becoming a little bit more understandable with each day.

Here is the list of baby girl's words so far:
  • Ma-ma - Mommy (and sometimes Daddy too)
  • Da-da - Daddy
  • Na-na-na-na - Banana
  • Uh-oh - Uh oh, especially when she drops something to the ground
  • Wow - This one has become a lot more defined lately, especially when she likes something.
  • Ch-ahr - Chair, this is our newest addition. Just learned it this weekend.
  • Duhh - Duck, especially when referring to some of her bath toys.
  • Dah - Dog or Dale, since Dale is the name of our dog.
  • Key - Very short and precise, menaing 'kitty'
  • Yaye! - Yay!
There are many more words that she says consistently, but we haven't figured out what the mean quite yet.

What were the first words for your little ones? Anything complex, or unusual? Or did your baby/toddler mix words up?

Now, as usual on Monday's I try to participate in Not Me! Monday over at MckMama's blog. So today, I am doing a Not My Child! Monday.

My baby girl did not go number two in the bath for the first time this weekend, causing my wife to urgently rush to pull her out of the bathtub before she started playing with it. Not my child!

And it definitely wasn't my precious daughter who woke up early Sunday morning (we're talking 4am here) and decided she was hungry. But after she drank her milk in mommy and daddy's bed, she did not lie next to daddy and play with his face and hair saying sweet little mumbling baby talk. Not my precious child!

Finally, my baby girl does not have a very bad habit of dropping anything and everything she can, just to say to 'Uh Oh'. This is a bad habit she's getting in trouble for now, because of the items she's starting to drop.

Hope everyone has a great Wednesday! Oops, MONDAY!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Go Cowboys!

At Kelly's Korner this week, everyone is sharing about their favorite sports teams, tailgate traditions, etc. For me, when it comes to sports, I live and breathe the Dallas Cowboys. Since I am from the Dallas area, I also love the Rangers (baseball), Mavericks (basketball), and Stars (hockey). Unfortunately, we have not been a city of championships lately, but more a city of *choke*.

But I remain optimistic! Since I am such a huge Cowboys fan, it is hard when I have to miss watching their games on the weekend. With my work schedule as it is, I find I am often unable to watch them on TV unless it is a Sunday or Monday night game.


At work, since I work in the NICU, I work with a majority of women. There are a grand total of 2 men on the day shift, not including myself, and one is a doctor, so he is not there as frequently as the nurse, who is the other.


The nurse and I make a bet every week on the Cowboy game. I bet the 'boys will win, he bets they will lose. He loves the Cowboys, but his theory is if he bets for them, they always he bets me they will lose, thus reversing the jinx. Doesn't work every time, and we both end up winning about 50% of our bets. Oh, and the stakes...wait for it...a coke ;)

As far as tailgating goes, there's not much around us that would have something like that, so I have to settle for watching the game on my couch with my football food (almost always complete junk food). I'd love to go to a game, but the tickets at the billion-dollar stadium that just got built are a little bit too expensive. That, and parking is about another $40 or so. Too rich for my blood.

Looking forward to seeing what teams everyone else supports! Go Cowboys!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Wordless Wednesday 10/7/09

"Almost" Wordless Wednesday

baby girl toddler

We have found mommy's make-up, and love to get into everything!

baby girl toddler

Getting ready for bed and choosing our books!

The Silly Baby Girl!

When your daughter is only a one year old, you begin to realize how truly funny she is, and how much her personality is developing and taking shape.

Our baby girl is just a laugh and giggle machine, and loves hamming it up for mommy and daddy. However, catching these moments on camera seems to be a real feat for Brit and I.

I am posting this up for both of us, since only one of us can post for the Hasbro $1,000 giveaway at 5 minutes for mom. Head on over and check it out. You can enter your silly photo and have a shot at winning as well!

Here is our baby girl being silly and hamming it up at the pumpkin patch! I know I have posted this photo before, but this is special and just for the contest!

baby girl toddler pumpkin patch

Monday, October 5, 2009

Baby Girl and the Pumpkin Patch!

This weekend, our newly crowned toddler, aka baby girl, got to head to the pumpkin patch with mommy and grandma! She had tons of fun. I, on the other hand, had to work, which was incredibly busy. Our census at the NICU has been full for the past 2 weeks now, so never a dull moment.

Working in a medical field, you really cannot disclose too much information about what happens at work due to federal privacy laws, but I can say that we have definitely seen an increase in twins and triplets lately.

When a set of multiples is brought into the NICU, it becomes very, very busy.

Other than that though, I had a great weekend. I love my job and the critical aspect of it!

Baby girl has had a runny nose going on a week now. Nothing serious, but I wish she didn't have to sleep with it. We have given her nose drops and left the humidifier on when she sleeps, which seems to help.

The good thing emerging from her runny nose is that she has learned to blow it in a Kleenex. In fact, she enjoys it. She starts laughing after she has blown everything out!

Here are several photos from the pumpkin patch adventure!

pumpkin patch

pumpkin patch

pumpkin patch

pumpkin patch

pumpkin patch

Today is also Not Me! Monday at MckMama's blog.
  • I did not open the refrigerator yesterday and notice 3 bottles of milk ready for the day's use. I did not fill each one up a little bit more with more milk because I thought baby girl would need more. And my wife did not think she was going crazy when the bottles magically filled themselves up.
  • I did not stop at a Quick Trip gas station on Saturday morning and get the 44oz Coke to wake myself up. Might as well have just eaten a cup of pure sugar.
  • And finally, I did not introduce my daughter to the movie Happy Feet. And baby girl definitely does not dance and try to sing along with the penguins when they do! SO CUTE!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Baby Girl on the Swing!

Today, baby girl and I went outside to enjoy the beautiful weather! It started out at 46 degrees this morning, so I had us bundled up to go outside this afternoon. Yet, lo and behold, it was 80 degrees when we got out there, so I promplty removed her jacket after about a minute outside.

She loves swinging! Still a little cautious, and not quite sure where to put her hands, but we had a great time.

What you can't see in the photos is all the ant hills everywhere. I'm telling you, 'tis the season for ants. There were mounds all over the place, so we had to be careful where we played.

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

baby girl toddler swinging

What's up, baby girl?

baby girl toddler swinging

...thumbs up dad, excellent pushing job!

baby girl toddler swinging

Trying to grab the camera.

baby girl toddler swinging

The epic glory shot!

baby girl toddler swinging

Sittin' on the dock of the bay...oh wait...

baby girl toddler swinging

Swinging close-up!

baby girl toddler swinging

Discovering wood chips.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Best Baby Gear

Of all the baby gear we have used so far, this is my list of the best baby gear. At Kelly's Korner this week, it's all about showing off your favorite baby gear! Little did I realize how much I would use the things I didn't think I would, and how little I used the things I thought I'd use all the time.

So, in no particular order, here is my list:

1. Baby Bjorn

I carried our baby girl in this all the time! It really helped when I needed to get stuff done around the house when she was still tiny. I think I took that carrier just about everywhere with me. We still have it, and it's in perfect condition for baby #2!

2. Boppy
The boppy we have still sees use even though my wife is done breastfeeding (who breastfed for a whole year...way to go, baby!). Savi still lies on it occasionally to drink her milk when watching TV. A Boppy is an absolute must for anyone who has a baby in my opinion.

3. Bumbo
Another 'B' word baby gear, the Bumbo was a lifesaver when it came to feeding our baby girl. Before she was able to sit in her high chair, we would feed her baby food in this. Not to mention how convenient it was to pack this up for trips when we needed to leave the high chair at home!

4. Pacifier Holders
Man, I can't tell you how many pacifiers we lost. I thought they'd be easy to keep track of...but oh no, they just seem to fly away. That and it was fun for baby girl to throw them as far as possible from her crib. I'm still finding pacifiers here and there that have been missing for months! The pacifier holders cured all our problems and we still have the same pacifier on it that we started with. It hooks onto Savi's shirt, and she wears it for bed time, car rides, and other occasions. The passy is always right there so she never loses it!

5. Pyrex Measuring Cup
Not really baby gear you say? Hah! This was and still is my sole bottle warmer! Fill with water, put in the microwave, get the water hot, then pull out and put the milk bottle in. Easy! Not only is it a great bottle warmer, but it's still perfect for cooking, too! And yes, we have an actual bottle warmer, but it doesn't come close to being as efficient as my trusty Pyrex 2 cup measuring cup is.