Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Smile Baby!

For better or worse, Baby Jillian has arrived just in time for me to be really trying to figure out my camera, which means she is either going to grow up knowing exactly what to do or will start running from me every time she sees me pull out the camera as soon as she can get up!

I visited my very talented friend, Adrien, this week hoping that she could get my big baby to pose with my little one (which she was able to do for me and will be on our announcements!) and while we were there, she took this great pic of Jillian in her super cool Bamboo bowl. Jillian quickly filled the bowl just to show how much she liked what we were doing, but luckily Adrien was prepared and understanding - and for those of you planning a dinner party with Adrien any time soon, I don't think there are any intentions of using this for food! :)

Jillian and Papa admiring each other

This was Daddy showing Meredith how to pose, but I thought it was too sweet!

I had to take some pictures today because, first of all, she was too cute, and second, this was an outfit that Aunt Katie gave Jillian and I wanted to make sure she got to see how cute she was!

Just in case the first bow wasn't big enough, I had to try out this one!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Some firsts for Jillian

Just a week at home and already lots of firsts - here are pics from Jillian's first night at home and of course her first bath!

All snuggled up in her bassinette for her first night at home! Once I figured out that she likes to be swaddled, we slept pretty well and it gets better each night!

And here's her first bath at home - she is not a huge fan yet - or maybe she was just protesting because we didn't give her any of Meredith's bath toys- we'll have to remember that next time!
Much more happy to be all wrapped up and back with mommy!

What a cute and clean hippo!


Like I said in my last post, Meredith is being such a great big sister - she never likes to hear Jillian cry, she always wants her with us - so when she comes in to our room in the morning, she immediately wants Jillian to get her out of her bed - and if I try to let Jillian swing even for a minute, Meredith insists that we get her out!

Having some shared "tummy time"

Holding baby Jillian
And giving her sweet kisses!

Meredith's last request before bed or nap is to "cuddle me" and now she wants both Mommy and Jillian to cuddle her as she goes to sleep - and she loves to hold Jillian's hand - what cute little girls!

Heading Home

Just a week ago we were getting discharged from the hospital and heading home with our precious little one! It has been a great week with our family of four - Jillian is a good sleeper and just a very happy little baby. She only cries if she gets REALLY hungry - she starts off just kind of grunting for a little bit, so as long as I respond quickly enough, we never hear her cry. Of course, when we do, Meredith is the first to try to bring something to her to "make her feel better." She is shaping up to be such a sweet big sister!
Posing with her adorable door hanger that Gigi and Aunt Katie made. Jillian got to wear the same dress that both Meredith and I both wore home from the hospital - it looks great for being 29ish years old!

Meredith was so excited to see us get home - she was outside playing with Aunt Katie and Landon and just starting yelling "Mama and Baby Jillian!!" Poor Daddy didn't get as much attention. Then she immediately wanted to see her baby sister
Meredith worked hard to color this picture for her baby sister. Yes, it is a dragon. Aunt Katie tried to convince her that Jillian might prefer a princess or something, but this is the one she stuck with!
Daddy and Jillian resting and cuddling!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Welcome Jillian Mae!

We we welcomed Jillian on Tuesday, April 14th at 12:12 pm with an incredibly easy delivery - and most importantly she is absolutely perfect! She weighed 8 lbs 2 oz and is 20 inches long.

We got to come home today and are enjoying trying to integrate Jillian into our family - Meredith is loving having her home and is a very sweet big sister - always wanting to make sure that she takes care of her when she cries, giving her toys to "make her feel better" and wanting to know what she is doing all the time!

I also have some fun pictures from today as we got to leave the hospital and come home, so hopefully I will have time soon to update the blog with those...

Miss Jillian getting all checked out.
Jillian's first bath - they did it in the room for us so we got to watch...

Jillian and Mama posing with the wonderful doctor who delivered her so nicely and quickly (less than 10 minutes of pushing!!)
My little snuggler

A very proud big sister and a very happy family of 4
Meredith picked out this toy to give to Jillian - she has been so excited for her to get here so she could "give" it to her - Jillian loves it! :)

All the cousins having fun with "Jillian's" mailbox.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter at Gigi and Papa's

After naptime today, we headed to Gigi's for another Easter celebration with my whole family. There was, of course, another Easter egg hunt - this time, since it had been so rainy earlier this morning, we did it inside. Meredith and Landon both loved it!

Meredith loves her cousin, Landon! She had so much fun hunting with him and then all night, she would insist he "Follow me, Landon!" And if he didn't listen, she would be in the back room with all the toys just calling to him over and over!

Every year, my grandma makes this bunny cake and I always look forward to it! This year, she decided to let Meredith help decorate the bowtie with the Jelly Beans. She had so much fun and I think this was a record year for Jelly Beans - and when she ran out of room, she decided the bunny himself needed a bit more decoration. The best part for Meredith was that putting on the jelly beans, meant lots of frosting on her fingers - bad news for everyone else, but at least she had fun!

After her masterpiece was complete, she asked for candles - of course, there is cake, there should be candles! Luckily Gigi had some on hand. We asked how many we should add and 3 seemed to be the magic number (Daddy suggested there was one for each day until Jesus was resurrected - I am sure that is what she had in mind!) And we sang "Happy Easter to You" before she blew out the candles.

Gigi had a special treat of confetti eggs that Meredith and Daddy had a blast with - she was really sad when they were all gone!

Celebrating Jesus

Jesus is Risen! We of course celebrated Jesus' resurrection with a day at church - I had missed church the past few weeks, so this was a nice treat for me to be back to hear the great sermon from Dr. Wiles and to see all of our great friends. After church, I couldn't help having a photo shoot with the cutest little Easter girl ever!

Then after she cooperated so beautifully, it was time to go in to find the basket the Easter bunny left for her!

Meredith loved her pony, her baby bottle and of course all of her arts and crafts!

Easter Egg Hunting at Bubbie's

Easter Eve we went to Bubbie and Granddad's to celebrate with dinner and an Easter Egg hunt! Meredith immediately found a basket full of goodies and was so excited with the treats! But of course the egg hunt was so much fun too!

Meredith would run around, grab up the eggs, and then would check out her progress - usually saying "My basket is not full yet!" and then would truck on to find more and more and more!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Swing Set!

For the past year or so, we have been saving here and there - everything from Christmas money for us or Meredith to a little from some freelance work Neal has done so that we could get a nice swing set for the backyard. I was really hoping that we would get one soon so that Meredith would have something super fun to do knowing we would probably be at home more now with Jillian almost here. We finally had just enough to buy this great set we found on sale last week and brought it home. Then we realized that we had no idea when we would actually put it together - between Easter this weekend and bringing home a newborn next week, we figured the boxes would sit on our porch for quite a bit.

We got a great surprise from a friend on Friday - he called Neal telling him that he had assembled a crew of our other great friends to come over and put it together today. We were beyond touched that our friends were willing to give up part of their holiday weekend to do this for us - we are so blessed!

The instructions said that it would take 2 people 10-14 hours. Well, Neal and I spent about 3-4 sorting wood, screws, bolts, etc on Friday and then a revolving group of half a dozen guys spent from 7am until 5pm to get it all together.

All the sorted wood ready to be put together.
By 9ish we can actually see a structure taking shape!
By 11, I am still stunned by how much the guys have done!

Around 1, Meredith and I come home from the Easter Egg hunt to find lots of the fun stuff like the rock climbing wall done!
About 2:30 we have a play house with adorable windows - the guys had to put each of the boards on individually on both the roof and those too cute windows - good thing Meredith immediately noticed how cute they were!

They are almost done by 4 - just the slide is left!

Just in time for Meredith to wake up from nap, the swing set was ready! And her friend Jacob stopped by just in time to help her test it out!

Again, we are so grateful to Jason, Brady, Taylor, Kris, Micah, and my dad for giving up all their time today to make one little girl very happy!

Hunting for Easter Eggs - Part 1

Meredith did her first egg hunt for the year today at our neighborhood park. The town we live in has an annual hunt and this was the first time we have lived in Pantego at Easter to get to take part. There were tons of eggs and also tons of little ones - we had a blast!

Meredith scouting the eggs and the competition! Actually once they released the group of little ones under 3, she slowly walked over and was just checking out the eggs while lots were getting scooped up all around her - luckily Gigi stepped in and helped to make sure she found lots!

Pre-hunt, Pinky took the coveted basket seat - luckily we convinced her that she needed to empty the basket for maximum hunting capabilities.

On the look-out for more eggs! These eggs were full of great goodies - each one had candy, stickers, and a couple little toys - I was so impressed at how much they packed in!
After the hunt, Meredith got a pink balloon bunny and a sheep tattoo - we skipped the line to sit with the Easter bunny. Instead I just took her to see what she would think - she very quietly turned from him and started backing away as quickly as she could. Not surprising in the least!