Friday, June 19, 2015

Baby June

Well, "Mayby" is here! She was almost a June baby, which is funny because the name we had chosen is June. On May 30, eight days after her due date, she finally showed up, and since then we've been taking it easy adjusting to life as a family of four. More to come...

June Austin Butler
May 30, 2015 • 4:50 AM
8 lbs 8 oz • 21.5 inches

Friday, April 24, 2015

Mayby: 36 Weeks

We are getting sooooooo close. I cannot wait! It's funny because the first time around, I couldn't have honestly said I was excited. I was so scared and anxious about the enormous life change that was about to happen to us. We obviously wanted a baby, but the reality of it was terrifying.

This time it's a lot more exciting. We know what to expect (within reason, every kid is different), and the whole thing feels so much less scary than last time. That's not to say there aren't anxieties, but this time we are going in with our eyes wide open instead of totally blind. 

We know that there is a good chance that I won't produce enough milk, so for the first month or so, I'll be nursing and pumping like crazy, taking fenugreek, etc. And if I'm not making enough, I will have NO problem supplementing with formula or just giving up nursing all together. This time it won't take two months to figure out that our baby is starving. :)

We also know that it's likely I will have post-partum depression again. (I've literally been writing a post about it for a year. Someday I'll post it.) I will be leaving the hospital with anti-depressants in hand this time instead of waiting for five months to seek treatment. 

We also set up some boundaries for visitors the first month. Mike and I are both introverts, and we recharge by being alone, be it with each other or on our own. So for the first month, we are only allowing our parents and siblings to visit, and we are kicking them out at 6:30 pm each night. Then we can have time alone as a family before Nash goes to bed, and time as a couple after that. Nash's nap time is also going to be a no visitor time, so that I can have alone time with the baby. Last time we had people in our house 24-7, we had random friends and relatives stopping by most days, and we had 20 people over for Easter dinner when Nash was two weeks old! (Our moms totally did all of the work, but still. There were 20 people in our house!) We LOVE and adore all of our family and friends, we just think these boundaries will be helpful in the transition to being a family of four.

I realize these boundaries mean that our house will be less clean, there will be less laundry done, and fewer meals prepared for us. But honestly all I want is time and space to enjoy our new baby. Because of the nursing issues and PPD, I really didn't enjoy those first few months with Nash. I was overwhelmed by everything, and when our nephew died a few months later, I completely lost it. In addition to overwhelming grief, I felt an incredible amount of guilt having a healthy baby that stressed me out so much. But seriously that's another post for another day. 

I am excited to really revel in the newborn phase, and thankful that our family is so awesome in supporting us and what we need the first month or so. That time and space is going to be so great as we adjust, and we are excited to welcome our little girl home!

Anyway, we are just trucking along for the next 4 weeks! The nursery is pretty much done. We still need to raise the crib back up to infant height, but it's officially girly in there! I packed my hospital bag this week, too, because I'm a freak, but I just kept thinking about it and wanted it done in case anything weird happened and she came early. I don't actually think that will happen, but you never know! I also packed a bag for Nash in case baby comes before my mom comes to town, and he needs to spend the night at my brother's house or something. 

I semi-regret having everything done though, because now the next four weeks are going to drag! Haha! We'll see what happens!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Big Boy Room

You guys. It finally happened. A parenting thing was easier than I thought it would be. That particular thing was moving Nash out of his crib into a huge bed in a new room! This is really exciting for us because we have basically been homebound since the end of August when he outgrew/refused to sleep in his pack-n-play. Although, we found out I was pregnant a few weeks later, so it's not like I was up for leaving the house for more than 30 minutes. Anyway, with baby sister coming at the end of May, we knew we needed to make our move to give him time to adjust.

I think the last time I shared nursery pictures, was here. We added nursery stuff into our existing guest room, and kept our office in the smaller spare bedroom since Mike was still working on his MBA. Well, when Nash was a few months old, Mike finished up school, so we turned the smaller bedroom into his nursery, and the old guest room/nursery became a guest room/office/dumping ground. When it came time to figure out what to do with baby number two, we decided to keep the nursery where it is, move a small desk into our master bedroom, and turn the guest room into Nash's new room. Still following? :)

It's a bummer to lose our guest room, because both sets of grandparents live out of state. Thankfully both have other options of places to stay when they come to town, and hopefully we will move in the next one or two years to a bigger place.

Anyway, we didn't want to get rid of a perfectly good queen sized bed (our guest bed) to then have to buy a twin bed, so Nash has a HUGE bed all to himself. Mike and I would be lying if we said we weren't jealous. It looks very cozy and comfortable!

The airplane art is a set of three stretcher frames that used to be covered in fabric in the tv room, but were relegated to a closet for a few years. After cutting out an airplane shape, I made a super janky projector with a shoebox, saran wrap, and the flashlight on my iPhone. Don't judge. Then I traced it and filled in the outline with red paint.

I was going to just leave the existing white duvet cover that we had, but then Ikea tempted me with an adorable twin sized one. I just cut it open and sewed it to an old queen sized flat sheet we had to make a new queen sized duvet cover. It was super easy, and the fabric is so cute. It's all different kinds of vehicles, and Nash loves to point out what each of them are.

The only big item we bought was a shelf thing (also from Ikea) to hold books and toys. So far it has worked out really well. And the little grey drawers (which used to hold office supplies) work perfectly for nighttime diapers, socks, shoes, and things we don't use as often like gloves, hats, and swimsuits. Cloth diapers and wipes fit perfectly in a couple of Target Dollar Spot bins on top of the drawers.

The curtain are super simple and not especially cute, but they get the job done. The job being block out the sunlight so Nash sleeps as long as possible. I got blackout fabric, cut it to size, didn't hem it, and added some grommets along the top so that we could use it with the curtain wire hanging thing we already had in there. So far so good!

All of Nash's nursery art found a home back on the wall with the door, along with his cute reading cushion made by his Aunt McCayla.

We started working on this room in January, and had it mostly done by mid-February, so he had a month of fun playing in there, while still sleeping in the other room in his crib. We officially switched him over Easter weekend, and other than a nap time or two that took him a while to settle in and go to sleep, it has been such a smooth transition. He even stays in bed until we go in and get him! I had visions of him waking up at 4 am and thinking it was morning and getting up and playing, but so far, so good. Phew! One less thing to worry about now. :)

Duvet cover (only available in twin): Ikea Ljudlig
Shelves: Ikea Kallax
Bins (orange no longer available): Ikea Drona
Gray drawers: Ikea Helmer
Play rug: Ikea Lillabo
Corner curtain system: Ikea Dignitet
Blackout fabric: Roc-Lon Blackout Drapery from JoAnn

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Nash: 2 Years Old

Well, as of a couple of weeks ago, we have a two year old! It's amazing how much Nash has changed in the last six months or so. He went from baby to little boy, and we love it. Bibs are gone, and high chair has given way to booster seat. He is moving out of his crib later this week. (Wish us luck!)

He is running everywhere, and loves going down the tallest slides at the park. He still hates swinging though. We just got him a balance bike, and he hopped right on. He still doesn't get the whole "sit on the seat" thing, but oh well.

He loves vehicles and trucks of any kind, and makes sure to point out every car we see anytime we go anywhere. He can identify a crazy amount of vehicles by name. Garbage truck, dump truck, fire truck, ex-avator (excavator), tractor, crane, police car, airplane, boat, bozer (bulldozer), and I'm sure there are more I'm forgetting. He also knows the parts of a lot of trucks too, probably because those are some of his favorite things to read about. He love to point out the driver's seat and the "steery wheel" every time we get in my car.

He is (most of the time) really sweet and fun to be around. He loves picking out new books at the library. Then we go home and read them all. We sit on the little couch in his room, and usually he says "snuggle", which means I get to put my arm around him while we read.

The best part of Nash's day is without a doubt when Mike gets home from work. This has a little to do with the fact that he loves playing in Mike's car and getting the mail with Daddy, but mostly he just loves being around his dad. It's super cute. Now when Mike does yard work, Nash is right there with him. He isn't helpful at all, but he loves being outside and he loves being with his dad, so it's a win win.

We had a little party the weekend before his birthday where we celebrated my brother's birthday too. We had pizza and cake. and Nash had fun playing with his cousins Olive and Miles.

On his actual birthday we went to the park when Mike home, and I made his favorite meal (pasta and cheesy bread). We had cake and ice cream after dinner, and put candles in his to blow out. Unfortunately, all he has heard about fire thus far is "Fire is hot! Don't touch!" so he was terrified of the candle. Maybe next year...

I'll end with some two year old pictures of our sweet boy. We love him so much, and are excited for what the coming year has in store.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Brown Butter Shortbread Thumbprints with Salted Caramel

I don't know if it's a boy/girl thing or if it's just a funny coincidence, but when I was pregnant with Nash, I wanted red meat and salty foods. It was only the last month or so that sweets sounded good again. This time the pregnancy sweet tooth hit a lot earlier. Yikes!

I have been making a batch of cookies every week and eating way too many. Last week I tried something other than my go to chocolate chip or snickerdoodle, and oh my. They were delicious.

Brown Butter Shortbread Thumbprints with Salted Caramel

3/4 cup butter, browned and cooled (just cook butter, stirring constantly until it turns brown)
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 1/2 cups flour

1 cup sugar
1/3 cup milk or half and half
2 tbl butter
1/2 tsp sea salt (plus more for garnish)

1. Mix the butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until creamy.
2. Add the dry ingredients, and mix together until well combined.
3. Chill in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
4. Roll into 1.5 inch balls, then press onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. Use your thumb or whatever to make a little well in the center of each cookie.
5. Bake at 375ยบ F for 8-10 minutes, or until the edges just begin to turn golden. Cool on the cookie sheet.

1. Put the sugar in a saucepan and cook over medium heat. DO NOT STIR! Once the sugar has completely melted, you will start to see spots where it starts to caramelize. At this point you can gently stir or swirl the sugar in the pan so that it caramelizes evenly.
2. Once the sugar is a nice golden brown, quickly whisk in the milk. If clumps of caramel form, don't panic, just keep whisking over low heat until it's smooth. Add the butter and salt, and pour into a jar or bowl to cool.
3. Once the cookies have cooled, fill up the "thumbprints" with the caramel sauce and sprinkle a bit of sea salt over the top if you want to.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Mayby: 25 Weeks

Hello, I'm here with a little pregnancy update on baby But number two.

How far along: 25 weeks tomorrow! My 24 week appointment was today though. They got a bit off over the holidays. Everything is looking good so far!

How I'm feeling: Definitely better than a few months ago! I still don't feel amazing though. I feel like I have a certain amount of energy to expend each day, and when I use it all up, nausea hits. That amount of energy is very small to begin with, so I just have to be careful not to do too much and to take it as easy as I can while keeping an almost two year old entertained all day. I also have been getting this ridiculous hip pain that gets so bad I almost can't put weight on my left leg. Annoying.

Weight gain: So far my weight gain has tracked almost exactly with my first pregnancy, although I lost fewer pounds during the first trimester this time. Actual numbers aren't important; I weigh less than my husband, that's all that matters. :) (Side note: why do people think it's ok to ask pregnant people how much weight they have gained? If you wouldn't ask a non-pregnant person that question, don't ask a pregnant person that question.)

Maternity clothes: I have definitely been wearing my maternity jeggings. (Thanks, Old Navy.) I wear those with stretchy shirts from pre-pregnancy. But honestly, I mostly just wear tunics and leggings. I don't love maternity shirts because I just feel really dumpy, so I just go for stretchy most of the time. 

Baby is a... GIRL!
I did the Verifi test at 10 weeks, so we've know since around 11 weeks that it was a girl. However, I still sort of didn't believe it until the ultrasound a month ago. We have a boy, Mike's twin brother has had two boys, so I thought we would have another boy. Nope! I can honestly say I had no preference, but it sure will be fun to have a little girl!

Baby size: I don't know. Cauliflower, eggplant? What do those even mean? At our anatomy scan four weeks ago, she was measuring 50th percentile. After a baby who in utero was over the 90th percentile with an off the charts head (still is), 50th sounds great to me! 

Sleep: My sleep has been a little wacky the last month because Nash had an ear infection, and now he is getting his 2 year molars. We have had a few rough nights, and if I don't get a good night sleep, I feel awful the next day. This week has been good though, so that has been awesome!

Movement: Another crazy little mover in there. She doesn't kick as hard as Nash did, thankfully. 

Name: We are pretty set on a name, but it's a secret. It was on our girl's list from when I was pregnant with Nash and we love it. Middle name is still up in the air, but I have my mom doing some digging through the family tree for more possibilities. Mayby is her code name for now. May baby = Mayby.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Christmas 2014

You know, it's February, so I should probably get something down about Christmas. Maybe.

Christmas started on December 20th for us when we got together with Mike's brother, his wife, and their son Miles to celebrate Butler family Christmas. (The rest of the extended Butler family was celebrating on the other side of the state.) We opened blocks from Mike's parents, which were and continue to be a HUGE hit! We also had brunch and made Nash and Miles wear matching pajamas, obviously. Later that day we decorated Christmas cookies and went to a party at Mike's uncles house, where we spent time with some of his aunts, uncles, and cousins.

The 24th was our immediate family Christmas. It was exciting to celebrate as a family since Nash us old enough to know what's going on this year. We gave Nash a train board, which he promptly destroyed, so the tracks are just all over the place now. :) We went to church in the afternoon, then came home and FaceTimed with Mike's parents so they could see Nash play with all of his presents. We also had italian food for dinner, which we thought could be a fun family tradition in years to come.

Christmas Day was a crazy travel day for us, and we headed to Colorado to see my family. We flew with my brother, his wife, and their daughter which was fun, and we landed in a snowstorm, which was not fun. On top of that, the one car that my parents have that would fit two car seats, four adults, all the luggage, and a driver wouldn't start, so they had to borrow a car. By the time we got home, it was almost time to put the kids to bed. And we had left our house in Seattle mid-morning! It was a long day for a 2.5 hour flight. It was really fun though because my grandparents were at the house when we got there, and I hadn't seen them for almost three years! And the 25th is my grandma's birthday, so it was very special to be able to spend time with them.

We had Christmas with my family a few days later, which was a blast. There was cheese fondue, chocolate fondue, and lots of trains for Nash. He was in heaven, and he loved being able to spend so much time with his cousin, Olive. My morning sickness wasn't cooperating for much of the week, so I went to bed early a lot and was sick for quite a few of the days. Thankfully there were lots of people around to help with Nash so Mike was able to get a break too. 

We had a fun few fun outings on days I didn't feel to sick, and we were able to spend time with a couple of friends, but we wish we'd been able to see more! Mike and I also snuck away to see a movie, which almost never happens these days. It was at a theater with huge recliner seats and food and drink service. So fun!

New Year's (which also happens to be my mom's birthday), we got another snowstorm, so we just hung out and ate Chick-Fil-A, and watched tv all day. It was magical. 

With all the snow we got, Nash was able to go sledding for the first time! He loved the snow and loved sledding. He is a Colorado kid at heart. :)