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September 24, 2007

Lil' Vol

Eleanor continues to be a delight. When she had her weight check on Thursday, she had gained 12 oz in one week! That means she was 9lbs even! At this rate I'm going to have to drink in every bit of her littleness - it'll be gone in a flash! She's two weeks old today. She's still not doing much other than eating, sleeping and pooping... but she's definitely awake more these days but blessedly, she is sleeping well at night. She had her first manicure today so I also feel better about letting her have her hands free. She's taking her first nap in her crib (not in the bassinet in our room). Lot's of firsts all the time. Guess that's what this next year will hold! Here are a few more pics of her and you can see the whole set here.

September 22, 2007

Happy Birthday Beautiful Girl!

Say Cheese
Originally uploaded by brookeandandy.
Our little Anne Marie turned two on Thursday. It's hard to believe and yet I feel like so much has happened in the last two years. She's amazing. There's almost no other way to put it.

She had a good birthday, Daddy was home from work for a couple days and when Mommy and Daddy are both with her and available to do her bidding, that ALWAYS makes for a happy Anne Marie. The only blight on the day was the fact that Mommy had long ago scheduled her two-year-old check up for that morning. Our pediatrician works part time and there was an appointment available that day... so I guess I just took it. It really wasn't that bad - she had to get a flu shot (I knew she didn't have any other vaccines that she needed - so I was really hoping for no shot) but the sucker (only her second ever) REALLY did the trick... about two tears and then she was right back to her candy. She was 29lbs and 35.5" - still growing like a weed!

So after we got her doctors visit over with, she got to run around the mall and then basically watch movies whenever she wanted all day. Hey - it was her birthday. We had a small family dinner and the highlight - cupcakes! - afterward. She's not really known much about the existence of cupcakes before... but she knows now. She had no problem learning the word "cupcake". Although I think she might have had it slightly confused with an ice cream cone because she just wanted to lick the icing off like ice cream and then put the cake part aside... although she might just be an icing girl after her Aunt Paige's heart! Then she opened a couple presents from Mommy and Daddy and played - she now owns her first play-doh - which was a big hit.

She's learning so much right now and I've been collecting up some of the most fun items to document here. Last night in the car, she figured out that she talked different (and made Mom and Dad laugh really hard - and then reciprocate) when she held her nose. It was so funny. We were getting the normal chorus of "Mommy Daddy Mommy Daddy" and then all of a sudden it was higher and more nasal - when I looked back, she was holding her nose and we all had a big laugh and talked that way for a while.

She's learned her whole alphabet and was already starting to teach Eleanor her letters... she was holding up her foam letters and telling Ellie what they were and then putting the letters on Eleanor's chair for her to study.

She's known the word "STOP" for a while - it's what we use when she needs to freeze - such as in a parking lot and a car's coming or something like that. However, recently she's been using it on us. When I'm walking down the hall away from her I often hear "Mommy... STOOOP... STOOOOOOP". We are trying to explain to her that it doesn't always work the other way around.

We have to do the normal parent trick of spelling certain words in front of Anne Marie - and for those of you who know me well, you know that this is a challenge for me! What's so funny though is that she realizes that we're saying letters and often will just start saying letters herself. So if we say M-O-V-I-E, she'll just start saying things like E-R-B-S. It's also starting to be unclear if she's understanding the spellings of MOVIE and COOKIE - I think we'll have to start spelling other words for the same thing.

She is so loving and gentle with Eleanor. She loves to know what's going on with the baby almost all the time and when it's time to get Ellie up from a nap, she adores running back to the bassinet. She pets her head and talks about her eyes, nose, chin, ears, etc. She gets concerned when Ellie cries but thankfully for all of us, that isn't too often. She likes to sit and cuddle with Mommy and Eleanor when I'm feeding her. She's also started being Mommy's helper by bringing me things or carrying things for me. One of the cutest things though is whenever Eleanor sneezes, she says "Bless you Baby" and when Eleanor coughs, she says "Cough Cough" which is what I always say to her. She's such a great Big Sister!

Here are some birthday pictures. And here are some puddle splashing pictures - we finally had some rain - and Anne Marie took full advantage!

What a blessing she's been in our life. I can't wait to see what this year brings for her. Happy Birthday my sweet little girl.

Family Visits

Big Ole Happy Family!
Originally uploaded by brookeandandy.
Eleanor had a big first weekend when Adams and Dudneys alike arrived in Atlanta to meet the new little girl. We had a great time, even if our Vols didn't provide us with a win. We missed our family that wasn't able to be with us - we look forward to visiting with you very soon when we make our first trek to Tennessee with two in tow. See weekend pics here.

September 13, 2007

Our New Little Girl

Our New Little Girl
Originally uploaded by brookeandandy.
Eleanor and Mommy are home (as of Tuesday evening) and we've been doing very well. She's eating and pooping like a champ - she's also been sleeping fairly well. Anne Marie's reaction has been about as good as we could have dreamed. She's very interested in the baby and has been very gentle. When Eleanor cries, Anne Marie is very concerned for her and wants to comfort her. We'll try to get some pictures of the two of them together sometime soon - but when both are awake, we usually have our hands full without trying to add a camera too. We did have a photo shoot for Eleanor while Anne Marie napped today - the fruits of which you can see here. I also uploaded some other pictures from our hospital stay here. I will try to post more info, including my birth story soon. Thanks for all the well wishes.

September 10, 2007

Eleanor's First Day

Originally uploaded by brookeandandy.
Eleanor is now back with her Mom and Dad and we are very happy about that!

No time to write much else, but I wanted to offer another picture of little Eleanor Jane.

Thanks to everyone for their notes celebrating the arrival of our new baby!


Eleanor Jane Adams!

Originally uploaded by brookeandandy.
Eleanor Jane Adams was born this morning, September 10th, 2007, at 8:34AM. She weighed 8lb. 6oz., and was 21" long.

Both Brooke and the baby are doing very well. Eleanor had to spend a little time in the transitional unit initially because of some leftover amneotic fluid in her lungs, but she is recovering well. As I write this, we're expecting her to arrive at our room any moment.

Brooke and I are overjoyed!


@ the hospital

We're @ the hospital and Brooke is in labor... The baby should arrive in the next few hours!

September 09, 2007

No Baby yet...

Big Belly - 9/9/07
Originally uploaded by brookeandandy.
but we've got some really good contractions going - they're doing the pre-work so hopfully when I do go into labor, it will go quickly! So maybe in the next few days (and hopfully sooner) we'll be announcing our newest addition! Mom is on her way as I type to help me with Anne Marie since these pre-labor contractions are really starting to take it out of me. This picture was taken this morning - click on it to check out the other two belly shots...

First Day of School

Big Girl
Originally uploaded by brookeandandy.
This picture was taken the morning of her first day of school (Parent's Morning Out). She did very well even though she cried when I left and did switch between being a little upset about Mommy not being there and enjoying the new things. I'm really happy with the school and her teacher and I think this will be a good year for her and me. It will allow for one morning a week of Mommy/New Baby time (otherwise known as time to run errands with only one child in tow) - and she'll start to learn some really great lessons... like preschool calculus and physics... actually more like playing, art, music, and eating in a group. So our reactions to school paralleled... at least for the first five minutes. Even though I've dropped her off countless times at church nursery and friends' houses, for whatever reason this was more significant to me (or it was the pregnancy hormones). I cried as I walked out of the building and got into my car. Something about the word "school" I guess. Don't know what I'll do when she's really in preschool!

A few other adorable things she's been doing recently (yes I posted not even a full week ago, and there are more!):

I think she's got one of her first jokes going on - when something finishes, like a nap or a song, or something happens, like the lights coming on she says "Dong!" and then laughs. It's like she's ringing a bell. It's hilarious to us, which I'm sure has encouraged her more in it.

Another joke/activity recently is that when I go to get her up in the morning or from her nap (meaning she's been calling out "Mommy"), she plays like she's still asleep. I go in and say, "Oh, is Anne Marie still asleep" and then she picks her head up really quick with a big smile to show that she's awake. Then we repeat for awhile. Occasionally she'll throw in the most adorable "Boo" like we say in Peek-A-Boo. She also likes it when Mommy or Daddy play asleep and then she says "wake up" or her equivalent, and we pop to life.

One of the joys of being her Mother recently has to be the abundance of heartfelt "Thank you Mommys" I'll hear through the day. When we ask her to say thank you, she'll distractedly do the sign (if she's not too preoccupied with whatever she's supposed to be thanking us for). However, when it actually occurs to her that she's thankful about something, I get a "Thank you Mommy" with the sign while she's looking me right in the eyes. It happens more and more and melts my heart just about every time. You're never quite sure what it will be that puts her in that thankful mood - reading a book, handing her a ball she wants, the other day it was even cutting her fingernails (or being done cutting her fingernails, I wasn't sure) - but as she's able to interact on a more abstract level- I've really enjoyed getting to know her more.

We were reading a book the other day that talked about Curious George being LOUD - so then we'd yell and generally be loud. When I then said something about quiet, she, quite out of the blue as far as I'm concerned, put her little finger to her mouth and said "shhhh". I'm not sure if she's seen me do that, or if it's something she's picked up elsewhere, but I thought it was interesting. Shhhhh is a nice concept for her to understand!

A little while ago, when she was outside with Daddy, she leaned up against the tree and started scratching her back. We think she picked it up from Jungle Book's Baloo the Bear. Occasionally I think I see her doing it in a doorway too. Pretty Funny. She is figuring things out and learning new tricks daily it seems!

She's certainly becoming our big girl now. Can't wait to see her as a big sister!

September 05, 2007

FREE Baby Notifications!! Register Now!!

With the arrival of our second baby rapidly approaching (but perhaps not fast enough for Brooke's liking) I want to remind folks that they can register their email address to receive notification when the baby has arrived. If you have registered before you need not register again. When the baby arrives I'll post the information and broadcast the message to everyone who is on the list - totally free of charge. To register, just enter your email address on this page where it says "Subscribe".

Thanks to everyone for all the love and support. I look forward to sharing the news!


September 03, 2007

Our Girl

Our Girl
Originally uploaded by brookeandandy.
She continues to be a delight (almost all of the time). Even her cute shirt and hairbow though were not enough to pull our Vols through. However, if we ask her to say "Go Vols" she pumps her little fist in the air and says something like "Bo Balls" - every time it's one of the cutest things ever. Other things she's been saying/doing recently: Whenever she hears a sneeze or cough, she says an adorable (and very clear) "Bless You" with a huge grin. Also, she's been leaning in to us very conspiratorally and whispering "moobie", or "cookie", or whatever else she's wanting at the time - as if she's saying - "just between me and you, isn't this a really good idea".

She starts Mother's Morning Out on Tuesday and we go to a bible study at church on Thursday (so she's in nursery for that) - these new transitions will hopefully go very smoothly. We'll post first day of school pictures and updates soon.
A few new pictures here.


We've not been very good about gathering predictions for this baby. If you have a prediction you'd like to get in before the birth, please post a comment here. We're accepting predictions on date of birth, size, length, and sex. If you have already given a prediction months ago, but would like to update it, feel free to post a new one in a comment.

Pregnancy Update - Yup, no baby yet...

Self Portrait 9/1/07
Originally uploaded by brookeandandy.
This picture hardly does my belly justice, although many of my friends think I'm not as big as I was with Anne Marie. I think I have achieved my baby-birthing weight - I think this is where I was for Anne Marie and I've not gained almost anything for the last month or so. After telling my friend, Jane, that I felt as big as a house, she reminded me that I actually am a house right now, which I feel is a beautiful way of thinking of this end of pregnancy time. This house is full to the brim too - at any given time you can see/feel a heel, leg, knee sticking out. I think the baby feels that about 9pm is calisthenic time and he does a full jump, kick, and stretch routine.

I'm 39 weeks today (40 will be "full term" and my due date). I'm really ready to be done with being pregnant but still have all the emotions and anxieties that accompany the fact that in order not to be pregnant any longer, this baby will have to born through labor. I feel up to it and only pray right now that we'll have as great a birth as the first time - I REALLY don't want to have be induced - not only because that will mean I'm past my due date, but also because that means using interventions... I am really looking forward to a natural birth and if I'm induced at Northside, I think that will mean an automatic epidural for me... I'm not going to kid myself that I can handle pitocin contractions, even if this is my second labor.

We had an ultrasound last Wednesday and everything looked great. We got a favorable estimate on the baby's size - 7lbs 13oz - which on my due date would be about 8.5lbs (Anne Marie size). This can be plus or minus 1lb but I feel very confident that I can handle a big baby - this body was made for birthin'. We got to see the baby all scrunched up - believe me, there's not much room for him or her in there anymore - as my bladder and ribs can attest too daily! It's amazing to see even a fuzzy picture of your baby's face. I'm so curious about what this baby will look like, what will be his or her temperament (I'm really hoping for an angel!), and most of all - IS IT A BOY OR GIRL?!?! Were we insane not to find out? No, it will all be worth it when this baby makes his or her entrance and I hear "It's a..." And it's so much fun to be able to announce to friends and family the baby's sex and name. Sorry Mom and Gwen for the 9 months of suspense.

We'll announce via the blog anything big that is happening... right now we're just plodding (and waddling) along. Thanks for continued thoughts and prayers.