Monday, November 14, 2011

Ashlynn at 4 weeks

In the spirit of Thanksgiving (coming all too fast this year); I am expressing my great appreciation for my youngest daughter's sweet temperament. Ashlynn is giving me so much to be thankful for. She's a beautiful baby girl and I adore everything about her. She smells sweet like milk and baby soap. She is warm and heavy in my arms. She puts this blanket of sleepy calm on me when she falls asleep on my chest.

I am extremely grateful that she likes her car seat and tends to fall asleep when we are driving; often staying asleep in her car seat long after we've reached our destination.

She is a good nurser, especially in the middle of the night. She took a bottle from her Father last night without any fuss. Hopefully she won't mind switching from bottle to breast here and there.

When she's well rested she falls asleep easily for her naps and stays asleep for a good long nap.

She isn't fussy unnecessarily.

She is soothed by a pacifier in the late evening hours when she tends to get restless and overtired.

She likes all the noise our family makes!

I am mostly thankful for the first real smiles she has given me in the last few days. Smiles that say "Hi Mom, you're the best!" There is nothing better than that.

ice skating

Our weekends have been jam packed ever since we moved to Virginia in August. We have not had one lazy day yet. This weekend was no different. Kiki visited on Saturday and we went ice skating!

Neither of the girls have been ice skating before. They both experienced Disney on Ice the weekend prior (thanks to Kiki!) so they had an idea of what to do. Addie immediately put on her "ice skating outfit" when she found out our plans. Bella obediently put on her ice skates when we got to the rink and did two laps, one pushing a bucket; screaming the entire time. She was not a fan. We put her Crocs back on after this photo. Poor girl hated it.Addie on the other hand did well. She loved every minute of it and dusted off the ice when she fell. By the end of our time at the rink she was skating by her self!To top it off we met Santa and Mrs. Claus. Addie walked right up and gave Santa a bug and answered all his questions. Bella wanted nothing to do with Santa (other than a peak from afar) so the photo is incomplete but at least I got my oldest and youngest in a great photo!

late Halloween

I'm not keeping up with the blog as well as I'd like to be doing. I blame it on our family of 5 status. Phew! The kids are kicking my butt on a daily basis.

Halloween was wonderful in our little American neighborhood. Auntie Brienne came over to hand out candy with us. The girls bounced around the house in anticipation of trick-or-treating when Justin got home from work. It reminded me of when I was a kid and I couldn't wait to get my costume on, light our pumpkins, and go out trick-or-treating with my Dad and sisters.

My one request for our first Halloween in America was a good picture of all three girls in their costumes.

Ashlynn didn't end up walking around with her sisters. She was happy once the lady bug costume was off and she was in my arms nursing and rocking again.

The pumpkin trick-or-treated for about ten houses and then declared that she was done. The angel on the other hand ran around with her Dad and the neighbor kids until bedtime.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Ashlynn's quilt

Ashlynn received a gorgeous baby quilt from her Great Aunt Mary K just as Addie and Bella did. These quilts are well loved in our family. They go with us in our air freight shipments so we can always have them. They've come in handy with out cold fall nights lately.

Ashlynn's quilt is the first my Aunt has done in pastel baby colors. It's a beautiful blanket.

Friday, November 4, 2011

count down

We knew all along that we would be bringing our new daughter into the world among some major transition for our family. The count down to moving to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia began the moment she was born. At 40 weeks pregnant I was torn between wanting Ashlynn to arrive already so I didn't have to be pregnant any longer, and her staying put so we as a family could stay put in America a little longer.We have roughly 5 weeks before we have to pack up and move to our new home in Africa and I'm panicking a little bit about all that needs to be done but cannot possibly done with a newborn, a two and a half year old and a four and a half year old.We knew that we wouldn't have much time in America to repatriate and enjoy being Americans. We knew that we probably wouldn't be allowed to stay at home with family for Christmas. We knew all these things and yet I am having a really hard time processing the upcoming move and all it's inevitable transitions for my children and myself. We've only gotten settled here in Virginia. I knew I'd feel this way and still it's hard.
5 weeks and counting.