Wednesday, September 30, 2009

You take the good, you take the bad

I've been busy dealing with the ying and yang of life.

The bad
- Found out that two family members are newly diagnosed with illnesses. Thinking healthy thoughts for both of them, of course, and hoping they have minimal impact overall. My grandfather, whom I haven't seen since before I was pregnant, revealed that he was just diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease, and in a recent phone call he alluded to the fact that he "doesn't have much time left." (Not necessarily because of Parkinson's, but because of his overall health issues and old age.)
- Em recently recovered from her first ear infection, which is minimal compared to the above, but still -- no fun at all. It's so hard to see your baby sick, especially when all they can do to communicate their severe discomfort is to scream continuously through the night.
-Teething is the ugly sleep monster that continues to wreak havoc on Em's sleep. We'd like to think we're over the worst of it, but I won't say that until she's sleeping through the night regularly again.
- I am FED UP with this lingering post-baby weight, not to mention all the weight I should have lost pre-pregnancy but never did. Sigh.
- This has not been a 20-hour work week for me. Cah-razy busy.
- On the other hand, I suppose "cah-razy busy" is good as it indicates some sense of job security, especially since Brent happened to become FUNemployed last week. Sigh, sigh, sigh...

The good
- We are going to visit my grandfather him later this month for a long overdue visit. He's excited to meet his great-granddaughter, and I'm looking forward to seeing them together.
- Em, aka Downtown Droolie Brown aka Droolia Child aka Bibtastico Baby-o, has seemingly turned down the faucet. I see the dry horizon, filled with dry outfits. Finally!
- I am back on the Weight Watchers wagon. Points are my friend.
- Despite being crazy busy at work, I'm very passionate about my job. I'm doing something I love for a company I adore, and that makes me so very excited.
- We're optimistic about Brent's job situation. For one, he's AMAZINGLY talented at what he does. Second, he's already got some irons in the fire. Third, he's enjoying more quality time with Em while he's job-hunting. Fourth, things like this seem to have a way of working themselves out for the better.

"Turbulence is life force. It is opportunity. Let's love turbulence and use it for change." - Ramsay Clark

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Too soon

I'm (obviously) behind on my own blogging, and my Google Reader is overflowing. Through my sporadic picking and choosing amongst the gazillion posts I will eventually read, I happened upon one from Leslie that just made my heart ache beyond belief -- it's a post that I hope you will all read, too.

I can't imagine what life would be like for Brent if our childbirth experience had turned from beautiful to tragic. I don't want to imagine life without both of us here to support each other through this journey called parenthood. I don't want to imagine life without me here to giggle with Em, to run my fingers through her wispy hair, to check in at night to watch her peaceful slumber, to watch her grow into the wonderful little girl she is.

I learned about Matt Logelin, Maddy and Liz when I was still pregnant, before I had gone through childbirth and experienced the joys of motherhood. Post-Em, news like Jewelyn and her family reverberates through me in a whole different way.

I'm keeping Jewelyn and her family in my thoughts.

"Sometimes I think we're alone in the universe, and sometimes I think we're not. In either case, the idea is quite staggering." - Andrew Jackson

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Vegas, baby

I had hoped to scope out all the awesome new products at the big Vegas trade show and come back to report about them to all of you. But, um, it turns out I had very little time to explore the HUGE show -- it took up TWO FLOORS of the Vegas convention center -- and I was beyond busy at my company's own booth. Plus, apparently it's a big no-no to take pics of anyone else's booth due to yet-to-be launched products, yada, yada, yada. They almost didn't let me bring my camera in to take pics of my company's booth. After much begging and pleading and sending the request up the show ladder, I was able to get approval.

As I was only allowed to take pics of our booth, I figured this would be a good a time as any to reveal my new gig. I'm the online marketing manager for Ju-Ju-Be, a diaper bag (and other fun accessories) company. I feel so blessed to be a part of this great team. Not only do they make beautiful and durable products, but everyone associated with this company is so sweet. They're smart and kind and really family-friendly. Plus, as you'll see below, they're all about infusing fun.

When I arrived Saturday afternoon, the booth looked like this:
Before

The Vegas Convention Center didn't turn on the A/C while the booths were being set up. My guess is that because so many of the doors are open for the forklifts, etc., they don't want to waste the air. So we unwrapped all the bags for display in what felt like a sauna. Ugh. Thankfully we were in great company, which didn't make it seem so bad.

Here's the finished booth! It had a rock star theme, which was carried throughout wonderfully. It stood out -- in a good way -- from all the other booths. Ours was the only one I saw that had any sort of theme, and so many attendees commented on how fun ours was.
Our rockin' booth

We had a stage set up with a Rock Band video game. When things got a little slow, we hopped up on stage to shake things up with a song. We also invited attendees to join the fun.
stage

The JJB Band

To go with the rock star theme, we offered glitter tattoos - and all sorts of folks were excited to get their own.
Skull on skull

Check out some of the many bags Ju-Ju-Be offers!
Bags

More awesome bags

(If you're curious to know about my personal Ju-Ju-Be collection, you can see some photos here.)

As you might have guessed in my previous post, Brent certainly had his hands full with Em. He realized some of what I go through with her frequent night wakings (thanks to teething, which has thrown sleeping-through-the-night out the door), and what it takes to keep up with her on any given day. But he did a wonderful job -- not that I had any doubts.

I was quite busy while I was gone, which helped keep my mind off of how much I missed Em, but there was a surprising number of moms with babies at the show. My heart ached a little bit each time I saw a mom with baby in tow. I can tell ya, though, that there's nothing sweeter than walking out of the airport to find my hottie hubby and sweet baby girl waiting for me with open arms.

"I won the 2002 $2500 No-Limit Deuce-to-Seven-Draw Tournament at the World Series of Poker in Vegas. So, yeah... I'm pretty good at poker." - Kevin, The Office

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Texts in the city

While I was in Vegas for a work trade show for three days, Brent had quite the taste of what my days are like with Em, especially when he's out of town for work.

We had this text exchange while I was there.

Brent: Do you happen to recall having triplets? No way this is the only child. I think they're cycling through a rotation.

My response: Welcome to my world...

His response: Not a fair fight when fresh babies keep coming in off the bench!

Friday, September 11, 2009

So she thinks she can dance

Em has found her inner beat. And all she wants to do is dance. She hears a song, a jingle, a tune from me and the rhythm just takes over. She can't help but do it, and I can't help but smile.

I was able to capture her sweet moves today on video -- a rarity since each time she sees me holding the camera she usually stops what's she's doing to try to grab it from me.


(The video she's rocking out to is REM's appearance on Sesame Street singing a Muppet-ified version of "Shiny Happy People".)

As I get ready to leave tomorrow for Vegas, I'll keep her little choreography top of mind.

"Life is like dancing. If we have a big floor, many people will dance. Some will get angry when the rhythm changes. But life is changing all the time." - Don Miguel Ruiz

Saturday, September 05, 2009

1 short of a dozen

Today Em turned 11 months old, leaving me in disbelief that it's been nearly a year since her arrival.
11 months

We're having so much fun with her, and each day we seem to unearth a new facet of her personality.
Blocks

Her top teeth are about to bust through, further transforming her gummy smile from an infant to a little girl.
Gummy

I tell her every day that I'm so lucky to be her mommy.
11 months

And sometimes I tell her again, just a little louder.
"I can't heeeeear you"

"She's gonna be like eleven this winter? Wow, they grow up so fast. I have a few of my own that I want some day." - Michael, The Office

Friday, September 04, 2009

Filling in the blanks

:::blowing the dust off my blog:::

Hey folks!

Sorry for the absence. Just finishing up my first official week at the new gig. Still adjusting to all of it as I'm making my own schedule and am still ironing out some daycare stuff for Em.

So, what's been happening lately?

Em is a standing queen. She's able to get to a standing position with very little assistance now, holding onto nothing and literally applauding herself for doing so. I'm usually cheering her on in the background. "Go, Em, go!"

Caught in the act

At one point in my pregnancy, I think I had at least four other friends who were pregnant, too. And the 1st birthday bonanza has begun! Last weekend we attended the 1st birthday party of the daughter of a friend I made in one of my mommy groups.

Here's the birthday girl, going b-a-n-a-n-a-s! (Sorry - couldn't resist.)
Birthday girl goes bananas

She is beyond adorable. I had my suspicions that her mom was Filipina, but I hadn't confirmed it until the party. I gave Em a bite of pansit (Filipino food), and the birthday girl's relatives whipped their heads around when they overheard me say to Em, "Your first Filipino food! Grandma will be so proud!"

Em got to catch up with the birthday girl and our other cutie pal from our mommy group. Trying to get these three mobile babies to sit still long enough for a photo was like herding cats. And can you pick out the ham of the group?
Can you pick out the ham?

I'm starting to get things together for Em's first birthday bash next month. It's hard because I never imagined I'd do anything on a large scale, seeing as how she won't remember it, but we have so many friends who haven't seen her in a long time -- or ever, for that matter. So the guest list is kinda long, especially when you throw in spouses and kids. And as someone pointed out to me, it's less about a celebration for the baby and more about a celebration for the parents who made it through the first year. I like thinking of it that way. At least that's what I'll tell Brent when the fire-breathing acrobats and ice sculptures show up.

I'm also getting ready for my first nights away from Em as I'll be heading to Vegas in a couple weeks for a baby products trade show. If you know me and my love of baby gear, you'll know that it'll basically be my version of heeeeaaaaven. Plenty of pics and tales to come, I'm sure. I'll be gone for two nights, and Brent will be playing Mr. Mom. Lots of tales to come from that end, I'm sure, too.

"All women should know how to take care of children. Most of them will have a husband some day." - Franklin P. Jones