Strikingly similar? Shall we WRITE books instead of reading so many?!
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This past week, you turned 5 months old!
You consistently make us say “WOW she is advanced!!!”.
I know…every parent says this…but you REALLY are advanced!!! You’ve been tripodding a whole month sooner than most babies! AND you want to stand so bad! Most babies don’t want to do that until they are 6 months! See? A D V A N C E D.
Last month the pediatrician told me that I needed to start teaching you how to eat baby food. She said it wasn’t about nutrition at this point, just getting you to learn how to do it. I sort of slacked off on this because you’ve been getting a lot of breast milk recently and well…we’ve got a good thing goin’! But this week I have only let you eat big girl food 3 times…and you’re a pro. At first, I was skeptical. Every time I’d shove it in…you’d SHOVE IT BACK OUT!
I figured you were just too new at it to know how it works. But I think you just didn’t care too much for the food. I bought you some delicious “turkey dinner” and “broccoli mix” baby food today and you barely spit ANY out!!! You just have sophisticated tastes! You ate 1/4 of one of the jars!
You also like eating “Baby Mum Mums”. They’re a little rice husk treat that dissolve in your mouth. Yea it looks pretty gross. But you like it, and that’s all that matters!! You like to eat your snack and watch TV! The Mommy and The Daddy like to do that too! 🙂
You like your Uncle Colten a lot…but he only comes around during the “witching hour” 🙂 So he thinks you don’t like him. Or that you only want to poop on him and yell at him. But we know that’s not true! You were happy when he let you walk around on the table last week! He actually looks like he’s having all the fun!
You’ve also started to like the teething toys you have! We don’t think you are teething yet, but you do like these doo-dads!
One of your favorite things is of course reading with The Mommy or The Daddy. You really like to watch the pages as we read to you!
You even help The Mommy put new clean white sheets on her bed! 🙂
Here are some other things that you seem to be into this month:
(You’ve also made sounds that sound like “mama” twice) I wish I could believe you meant to!!! 🙂
Every single day I look at you and can’t imagine how I ever lived without you. How I could ever think of things without thinking about you first. Now you’re all I can ever think about sometimes! Sometimes I’ll forget what I’m doing when I start to think about you! You are so lucky…EVERYONE loves you! Even strangers love to talk to you and make you smile! You make The Daddy and I so happy! There is nothing in the world you could ever do to make our love go away. We will always LOVE you!
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I can’t believe it. FIVE months have gone by. It’s like I take a nap and she ages a month!!! NOOOOOOO!!! Make it stop!
Today was eventful.
There was a regular photo session…
THEN a dinosaur photo session!
We went to see Nina and Pawpaw and got to ride horses! Harper wasn’t very sure about what was going on, but she was a good sport! Nina and I rode down a trail to a creek and I worked up the nerve to trot…then “lope” home… they explained to me that Loping is a good run for a horse. I don’t know these things.
We had a good 5 month birthday! I will have to do a “Dear Harper” tomorrow! 🙂
She had so much fun in her bouncy swing from Auntie Ashley!
BTW check out how awesome my interpretation of Nina’s horse with blankets was? I was almost dead on re creating Lucky!
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This week Harper FINALLY got to meet her new friend Lily!!!
Nana came into town this week to take care of me after LASIK surgery!
She got to see how fun bathies are!!! 🙂
And what a happy sweet baby Harper STILL is.
New thing: I’m obsessed with baby leggings. Obsessed. It’s madness.
I’ll post more tommorrow when it isn’t so late!
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It’s been said to me a hundred times over.
I love this. Because she really is. Every baby has their moments, but for the most part we got a good, happy, lovey baby!!! How did we get so lucky? In the beginning, we thought the odds were against us. She tried to come early. This brought on questions of putting her in the NICU if she came. This would break my heart. We came in for our 39 week appointment only to be told she hadn’t grown any in TWO WEEKS. That was scary. Why??? Why hadn’t my baby been growing? I HAD BEEN GROWING!? Was she starving in there? …THEN the delivery. oh…the delivery!! My body didn’t want to let her out. I wouldn’t dilate, they found muconium in my waters. They told us she may have respiratory problems that could lead to pneumonia… Thankfully she didn’t. She was in distress after 7 hours of labor resulting in an emergency c section. She came out perfect. Well, almost. The doctors swore she would have jaundice. Her billiruben (sp?) levels weren’t right and they even made me come back for a visit the 2nd day home! AND SHE WAS PERFECT!
This girl is rich.
Rich with love.
Rich with happiness.
Rich with fun.
Rich with milk.
Rich with racoons, zebras, monkeys, bunnies, giraffes, and owls.
AND OF COURSE my rich girl prefers a deer park water bottle over them all! 🙂 A sign of things to come.
Every day with her is a blessing for us both.
When we take our 2:30 nap I like to rock her and say to her over and over again “Mommy loves you…mommy loves you…mommy loves you…” I hope she dreams about how much The Mommy loves her.
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Yesterday it was my Birthday! I used to always refer to my 20th birthday as being my favorite and most fun. NOW this year is my favorite birthday. My day was perfect. My evening was fun. I went home and got to sleep with my little girl. I have everything in the world I could possibly ever want or need!
The day started out with a kiss goodbye from John and a cuddle session with Harper.
Then it really picked up when we met our friends, Lura and Mae for a picnic. I was particularly excited for this because Harper has never really met another baby her size! And low and behold, Mae is almost EXACTLY Harper’s age! Harper is only a couple hours older! It was fun to see how they reacted to each other because Mae hadn’t met anyone her size either! I think if they could have had it their way, they would’ve just chewed on each others hands or feet the entire visit. I mean what are friends for?
(are you seeing how much STUFF we brought for a picnic?!??? lol)
John even stopped by to say hello to me for my birthday! 🙂
Then Harper and I said goodbye to Lura and Mae and headed to the JEWELRY store! 🙂 I got to pick out some pretty exciting things!
Then my favorite part of everyday rolled around…nap time. I just love to watch her sleep. I like to hold her and snuggle and hope that she doesn’t grow out of cuddling too soon!!!
During nap time John came home and led me to my big birthday surprise!!! A beautiful pallet swing he made himself!!!! AND my side of the garage door is working now! YAHOO!!!!!
then we came home to a wide awake baby who was ready to cuddle with The Mommy and The Daddy for the night!! 🙂
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Pink Orange, it was love at first sight
Pink Orange, when I turn out the light, and
Pink Orange gets me high as a kite
And I think everything is going to be all right
No matter what we do tonight
SOOOO…I’m pretty sure that ORANGE is Harper Mack’s favorite color! She always gravitates towards it! I wonder if all babies pick a color they like at first sight??
Mr. Ducky’s BEAK is the apple of our little girl’s eyes! She loves it! So much so, that she would like to just EAT it! NOM NOM NOM!!!
So…I know in the beginning, I wasn’t into all that “reading to baby so she will be smart” thing…but I’ve been diving right in lately!! I try to read to her every day, either before her 2 o’clock nap or at night time before bed! She loves it! I like how she scans the page and tries to touch the pictures!
The end of all stories looks a little like this:
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I thought I’d share this cuteness with everyone! My wonderful cousin, McKenzie was sweet enough to snap them for us! Check out her other work at www.mckenziemillerfilms.com SHE IS AMAZE-BALLS!
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I always neglect to post about our days. Sad.
Yesterday we took Harper to church for the first time ever!!!
Our last week, Harper got to spend tons of time with Nanny!!! She had so much fun!! Nanny went home today but we are excited to see her again soon, MAYBE for a beach trip 🙂 Harper was in my tummy last year for our beach trip! This year I can barely wait to see her reaction to the ocean! I know she’s too little to remember but I will have a ton of great memories from it! I can tell her all about it when she’s older!
We had TWO early birthday celebrations for me this week! One at my Auntie Kay’s and one at my future mother in law’s place last night! Harper was interested in my ice cream cake!!!
We have figured out she likes to briefly be held upside down! Her face is so funny when we do it…she’s like wait…so the carpet moved???
Harper has really started to get the hang of TRI-PODDING! It’s like a new sport to me! LOVE IT!
She can even do this standing/leaning trick in her crib. It’s a matter of me snapping the picture before she topples over though! 🙂 I really do think she will be an early walker. Only time will tell!
She is becoming a bottle holding expert!
AND OF COURSE…NOT ONLY LOOKS JUST LIKE THE DADDY…SHE WANTS TO DO WHAT THE DADDY DOES!!!
HER MY FAVORITE TIME IS WITH THE MOMMY DURING 2:30 NAP TIME!!! 🙂
Side note- I may not be wearing those THICK glasses much longer! I mad an appointment with Dr. Choi in Birmingham AL to get my LASIK done this month! More to come on that one!! EXCITED!
CHECK OUT MY UV BLOCKING SHADES BEHIND MY GEEK GLASSES LOL
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You know the boys are curious too. Here’s a glimpse into what they wonder about pregnancy, babies, and motherhood/fatherhood.
How is the sex life through the duration of the pregnancy?
In the very beginning before we knew it was GREAT! (I guess maybe weeks 1-6) Then it was random. I was having nausea a lot and that made me not in the mood to do anything at all! I was nauseated the first 4-5 months so that hindered us a lot. Then came the bump…I was self conscious about the way I looked and didn’t want to be physical because of the way I felt about myself. So I guess the sex life sucked. John will tell you that I wouldn’t sleep with him even if his penis produced diamonds. And I like diamonds.
What are some do’s and don’ts for the expecting father?
Is it bad to not want to cut the umbilical cord? Will I pass out at all during child birth?
No, I wouldn’t be personally offended if John didn’t want to cut it. It’s kinda yucky! He said he would though…but since we had a C section that wasn’t an option. The only time I was worried that John would pass out was when he walked in the operating room and saw me cut wide open. He looked very worried and a funny color.
What should you first expect when bringing the baby home from the hospital?
It’s hard to not have a button to call for help. lol
I only speak from having a c section…it’s hard to feel like you have stuff to do around the house and even though it is simple stuff, you REALLY should just rest that first week home. You’ll pay for it in pain if you don’t. I felt like John thought I was being lazy, but I really hurt. I should’ve stayed in the bed and honestly kept the baby in our pack in play in our bedroom so that it wouldn’t be so hard to get to her with my pain.
It is nice to be home though.
When does your sleep schedule normalize? Or does it?
NEVER!!! lol I hear it normalizes at 8 months. We aren’t there yet. Harper will sleep from 12-5/6 and that’s pretty much the best we can do for now. sometimes she will randomly wake up at 3-4 crying for a binky or diaper change. Maybe she just wakes up and realizes she’s alone.
Do you need to remove your breast implants (or as my Nanny calls them: “Plastic Titties”) in order to breast feed?
NOPE! I was producing milk when I was 5 months pregnant! When Harper was born I was producing enough milk to feed twins! Not a single problem with that!
Can you have intercourse while you are pregnant? Will it hurt the baby?
Of course you can, unless you have a condition that prevents you from doing so. It won’t hurt the baby…the male part doesn’t reach the baby! 🙂
At what point does sex become awkward during pregnancy?
John said that it was awkward for him when he could SEE her move from outside my belly.
How often do your boobs leak?
When I was pregnant they’d leak about a quarter size spot on my shirts 4 times a day.
Post pregnancy, I had SEVERE leaking if I was late on pumping!!! One day I was out running an errand and didn’t expect to be out so long. They leaked all the way through my shirt and down to my jeans soaking them!!! It was crazy! They hardly ever leak now but this week is my last week of making milk.
Does the baby hurt your nipples?
She did. That’s why I chose pumping instead of latching.
Does your lady area go back to normal?
Mine never really changed since I had a c section. It does HURT the first few times after having a baby. Even with a c section!
How bad does the pregnancy really hurt?
It’s the worst pain I can imagine. I seriously thought that I would die without an epidural. I kept thinking I was dying because I felt my body was going to go into shock from such excruciating pain. Women who do it without drugs are super heros. I could never have made it without my epidural.
Thank you to all my dear friends who submitted questions! You know I love you! 🙂
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Sooo…I was gonna write about all my readers questions…when I realized I only had a handful. So…I solicited and nagged all of my friends and got some great questions about pregnancies, babies, and post pregnancy jazz!
So, to my friends, thank you!
PRE BABY BABBLE
Is it better to stock up on newborn clothes or 0-3 months? (my husband doesn’t think we will need many newborn things)
Okay let me tell ya- John was the SAME way! He kept telling me we wouldn’t need many newborn clothes because she’d grow out of them in a month. WELLLLLL…she was in newborn until 3 months old!!! 🙂 So really stock up on newborn stuff! And it’s kind of good that you get to go stock up because you get to pick YOUR favorite things for her to wear first since what everyone else got will most likely be a little too big for the first few months! AND I loved that newborn sleepers had mittens so they cant scratch themselves. That was a big issue. Carters fit the BEST!!! One more thing on newborn clothes, they hate being changed so the quicker you can make the process the better, buy some zip up footed PJs so you can just quickly unzip change and zip back up in a jiffy! Then baby’s feet stay warm too! 🙂
What needs to be in my hospital bag? (several people asked this!) I partially addressed this in a previous post! https://birminghambell.com/2011/11/27/and-so-it-has-begun/ BUT I will alter it a bit and re list it! 🙂
Pack TWO separate bags. One to STAY IN YOUR CAR. That way you are prepared for every doctor’s visit towards the end!
What do I keep in the bags?
Well for the bag that stays in the car:
LOTS of onsies, winter fleece outfits (because I liked the room COLD and baby stays warm. win win., hats, socks, and pants.
One swaddle that I like in particular from swaddlekinz. The hospital swaddles are the bomb. Forget bringing your own. SERIOUSLY.
House shoes, because you will be walking on that COLD floor and don’t need any kind of sock or shoe that doesn’t have the sticky tread to keep you from slipping. That could be a major set back, especially a possibility with a C section.
Large/medium leggings- BLACK ONLY… ladies you probably know why.
Button up pj tops (easy for breast feeding or skin on skin time).
Cute (probably maternity) shirts that you might get your hospital photos taken in.
I liked my maternity fitted gap t shirts a lot 🙂 paired with leggins. Comfy and cute.
DON’T DARE PACK JEANS. YOU’LL CRY. SPARE YOURSELF. DON’T BRING YOUR EXTRA SMALL YOGA PANTS. YOU’LL CRY. JUST DON’T.
Tooth brushes for you both.
Mini Body Spray (not always up for a shower if you get a C)
Hair dryer/irons – honestly I only used mine the last day at the hospital.
Travel size shampoo, conditioner, body wash, shaving cream, and razor. (I was induced and that am I shaved my legs lol)
Granny panties only if you have vaginal birth. You’ll have to sport the mesh panties if you have a c section!
Always pads (the extra heavy flow long and wide with wings kind)…the hospital will give you pads that are similar to a subway sandwich in size and cushiness. And you can SEE them through your pants LOL
A pair of PJs for Daddy.
A pair of regular clothes for Daddy.
Spare cell chargers if you have them.
In my bag I grabbed seperate to take in the room with me immediately upon admission:
Makeup especially with waterproof mascara!!!
Glasses and contact case with solution.
My security item: my blankie
My favorite pillow, as well as Johns.
Digital camera with memory card and charger.
The hospital will provide you with this swag:
Diapers and wipes (ASK FOR MORE OF THESE EVERY SHIFT CHANGE AND HIDE YOUR STASH. IT’S BEAUTIFUL)
Swaddle blankets (TAKE A STASH HOME THEY’RE THE BOMB)
Breast pump accessories
Breast pads for leaking
Gel pads for soothing sore nipples
What are your top ten baby items that you could not live without, and feel others should register for?
MILK STORAGE BAGS
Extra set of crib sheets
Extra baby wash cloths and burp cloths – we use those instead of any bibs so far.
NEWBORN Onesies with mittens.
NEWBORN zip up night time suits with footies
baby monitor with camera not just sound
at least 8 -5 ounce bottles (I loved medela and momma brand) You won’t need those big bottles until she is like 6 months!
6 Pacifiers (not the kind they give at the hospital I like the kind that have the round button on the end because she can hang on to them better)
The little baby Einstein fish tank you can put in their crib. Harper is memorized by the fishies swimming and gets so tired watching she will sometimes pass out!
Baby bath tub with infant insert
NEWBORN size diapers! LOTS of them! 🙂 You will use 15 a day at first.
Baby Tylenol for the babies first shots. (it says not for infants, however the DR will tell you how much to give after the shots!)
Will someone at the hospital check my car seat to make sure it’s properly installed?
My personal experience was no. I had to go to a fire station and get them to do it. They made me feel super safe! I loved it! It WAS hard finding a station that had a person certified to do that. I was surprised!!!
How many people were in the room with you while you were giving birth?
ONLY JOHN. We had kind of agreed that from the get go. Once I started to have SEVERE pains, I didn’t want to see anyone but him. I didn’t want to hear any talking going on except him talking to me. I was afraid if others were in the room they would be chatting or watching TV while I felt like I was dying and I was not okay with that. I made a deal with the nurse beforehand. We had a code: I would ask her if she could check me, she would ask everyone to leave to do so -and then I could tell her to keep them outside because I was in too much pain. I think we even had a code word for her to just ask them to leave to check me lol! Good deal to work out!
What was your favorite craving?
Holy Jesus! FRIED PICKLES, PIZZA, ICE CREAM, FISH STICKS. BOOM. PERFECT BABY CAME FROM THAT.
When did you first know that you were pregnant? (What made you run and go get a test?)
I started to have really strange dreams, was very emotional, and spoke with a girlfriend about it and she mentioned that’s how she was when she was pregnant! SOOO I immediately RAN to Walgreens and bought SIX pregnancy tests. 3 were the standard one or two lines, and 3 were the “pregnant” “not pregnant” text kind!!
Do you miss your baby being inside of you or being pregnant at all?
I only miss when she was little (maybe 6-7 months old) and her kicks were really light and sweet. I lived for those. I also miss how the public was so accommodating and nice to me. I miss not having periods. I miss being able to know she’s protected inside me at all times. I miss my fluffy hair and pretty nails too! BUT THAT IS ALL!!! NOTHING ELSE DO I MISS! LOL
What is the best part of motherhood that you didn’t expect?
The extreme and constantly growing love I have for her. The want to be with her almost every hour of my days. I NEVER expected to want more. But as soon as I saw her and fell in love with her I knew my heart wanted more and that was what was missing in my life. She was the person who completed my life!
What part of motherhood was the hardest that you didn’t expect?
Feeling guilty when I had a hard time getting her to latch on. Feeling guilty when I couldn’t get to her crib fast enough when she would cry because I was in pain. Feeling guilty because I didn’t talk to her much the first couple of weeks because I didn’t know what to say to her. GUILT was a predominate feeling I had the first few weeks. I shouldn’t have felt guilty for any of those things, but as a new mother, that just happens. Feeling so SAD when I couldn’t figure out what was wrong with her, so I would just cry with her. It was hard for me to not resent John when he wouldn’t wake up to her cries. I also resented that I had to get up and pump every 4 hours no matter what- I knew it wasn’t his fault but I still just kept thinking “this isn’t fair”!!!
Was it hard to have your baby sleep in her crib, and not your room or with you- and how did you do it?
Not hard at all!!! She did well in her crib. The only hard part was getting to her in the middle of the night when my pain medication had worn off and it was so hard to get out of bed and walk to her room.
What do you think the benefits for breastfeeding your baby are?
GOSH there is just NOTHING bad about breastfeeding benefit wise!!!!!! It’s so self satisfying to me as a mother to know she thrives from my nutrition. It’s best for her digestion. It builds her immune system. I would do it a full 10 months if I was able!!! No questions asked.
POST BABY BABBLE
Do you nap when she naps?
I used to nap EVERY TIME she napped because the first month was so exhausting! Now, I occasionally do, because I enjoy bonding with her that way. I just love holding her while she is still and peaceful.
Does she sleep all night?
She only slept 2-3 hours for the first 2 months of her life. At 3 months she started sleeping 4 hours. NOW at 4 months she sleeps 5-6 and RARELY 7 hour stints.
How do you feel without a lot of sleep?
It was really hard at first. It makes you go a little crazy. It makes the both of you moody and causes bickering, but you get used to it after a few weeks, and after a couple months it’s MUCH better. At 4 months I feel like I get enough sleep to get up at 9am an function fine the rest of the day now!
How hard was it to lose your baby weight?
EASY at first when I was breast feeding. I gained 35 lbs. 3 Months after birth I lost all but 5 lbs, THEN I stopped producing as much milk and gained 4 lbs back! 😦 I am now eating better and exercising so hopefully I will get to my goal of 130lbs in 2 months!!!
Do you like how you feel now or did you like it better before?
I was seriously depressed while pregnant. I SHOULD have seen a doctor about it, but I didn’t recognize it as being as bad as it was. I was sick all the time, I was tired all the time, I was in pain, I was emotional, I hated my job, and was stressed about finding a home. It was entirely too much and I kick myself for not recognizing that and talking to someone about it. NOW I am the happiest I’ve ever been in my life. I think God let me skip post partum depression because I was so sad for my pregnancy! I did however, get severe anxiety the first 2 months with Harper. But that’s eased up and I’m almost anxiety free.
Do you feel closer to John now or before? Is he different to you?
While pregnant, I did not feel closer to John. I was resentful that I felt terrible and he felt fine and could do basically whatever he wanted to. I wasn’t allowed to take my normal sleeping pill regimen anymore and he could do things to help him sleep, and it really bothered me. It bothered me that he could hang out with friends while I threw up in my apartment toilet. I hated it. He would get frustrated that I never wanted to do anything, but I just mentally and physically felt like I couldn’t. We were both VERY stressed. And to be honest sometimes our families made it worse. I often felt like I needed a break from everyone except John. Not because I don’t love them, but because it was just a lot of stress building up. When I would hit my breaking point, I would drop all contact with anyone and stay in my bed. They didn’t understand this and had no idea how depressed or stressed out I was either so it wasn’t fair to them that I didn’t communicate this.
When we first laid eyes on Harper McKenzie I felt the closest I’ve ever been to him. That moment was unforgettable and I am so thankful we got to experience it. We were both in heaven together with this precious Angel of ours who we immediately fell in love with. I loved watching him with her and hearing the things he said to her. I loved that when I had hard times he would talk me through them and tell me I was being a good mom.
Now that we are at home I do see such a huge difference in him. He seems less stressed and so happy to see the baby. I love that he wants to spend time with her. I do often wonder if he wishes I would pay more attention to him because I do focus a lot on the baby. He is more attractive to me because I love the way he loves her. He’s a different person in almost all aspects.
How long is breast milk good for out, in fridge, or freezer?
Keep in mind I’m not a doctor! 🙂 You can keep freshly pumped milk out room temperature 4-6 hours, then put in fridge. I think it can stay in the fridge 5-7 days until you need to freeze. I was pumping so much at first, I just automatically skipped the fridge and used the freezer. Milk bags were my best friend! Frozen milk should stay good 8 months I think! Which is plenty! We are starting to run out at 4.5 months 😦
How long did it take for your stitches to come out?
I had the c section and they used disolvable stitches so I never noticed when they completely dissolved!
How many dirty diapers should your baby have in 24 hours?
I was told that she should dirty a diaper every time we feed her for the first month so a dirty diaper every 2-4 hours! After a month or 2 she would only poop once or twice a day! at 3 months, she would poop once a day. NOW that we are starting to supplement with formula she poops 4 times a day! 😦
When are the best times to pump, and how do you increase your milk supply?
I pumped at 11pm, 2am, 5am, 8am, 11am, 2pm, 5pm, 8pm the first month. Yea I know, it sucks.
2nd month I spaced it out 4-5 hours if I wasn’t in pain or leaking too much.
3rd month I kept the same daytime pumping schedule, but only pumped at night at midnight, and 6am.
Month 4, my milk supply has dropped and I only pump once every 24 hours only to get 5 ounces. SAD 😦
What are some postpartum exercises that I can do until I can lift heavier weights?
Girl, I was on LIGHT duty for the full 8 weeks because of my c section, then I got mastitis and was down for even more time so I’m NOT the girl for that advice!!!
I hope I pleased my ladies, please feel free to send more my way if you think of any!!!
SOON TO COME, THE BOYS QUERIES!!!!
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Everyday I look at Harper and wonder what she will be like when she grows up. As much as I’d like her to stay this little, I know she will grow up fast! I often wonder what characteristics she will get from all of her family. It’s safe to say she is going to have a kind heart and a good sense of humor…but what else!?! The possibilities are endless!!
I wonder if she will have a green thumb like my Mammaw did!
or…will she be obsessed with FISH like my Daddy?!?
WHO KNOWS?!? I think she will have the perfect balance of everyone! I’ll try to post more of Harper’s future interests on here! 🙂 Maybe even get crazy and make a new tab for her.
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