Friday, December 22, 2006

Our Girl at Eight Weeks

Abby Kate is getting bigger right before our eyes. As she approaches two months, she now weighs over 10 pounds. I'm not sure how tall she is now, but I know she's growing in that direction, too, because she's getting too big for some of her clothes. It's such a shame that they grow out of all those cute little outfits so fast. There are a couple things she didn't even get to wear!

I spend lots of time trying to engage her while she's awake. We play with her toys (read: I play with her toys while she watches intently), take walks and jogs, swing in the hammock, read books and sing songs. She has now found her hands and tries [unsuccessfully] to put her entire fist in her mouth. She's such a happy and content baby. She's full of smiles and is starting to coo. She hardly cries, but when she does I've been able to calm her down quickly. She's sleeping in her crib for four and five hours consistently at night. I've been able to put her down during the day when she's still awake and she falls asleep on her own after "playing" in her crib for a few minutes. Initially, she HATED being on her stomach, but now she lays on her stomach for a little while each day and is getting the hang of holding her head up.

We got her this playmat for Christmas (couldn't wait to give it to her). She loves it!

Junah is really good with her. He's getting used to sharing our attention. AK just stares in wonder at him and smiles.

She absolutely LOVES bathtime!

I say she's getting big, but here you can see how small she still is. We're swinging at a park near our house.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Feeling the Burn Never Felt So Good!

Remember me saying how great it would feel the first time I could take off running after having the baby? Well, I forgot to blog about it until now, but I did take off on that first run 2 1/2 weeks after Abby Kate was born and it felt awesome! I jogged two miles and felt like pumping my fists like Rocky in the home stretch. The neighbors would've thought I was crazier than they already do, so I obstained, but in my head I was so singing Eye of the Tiger! Since then, I've been slowly building my endurance back up by running, spinning, circuit training and resistance training. It feels exhilarating to seriously exercise again. I feel completely free not having that huge belly and all the strain it brought on my body. I LOVE NOT BEING PREGNANT!!!!

Here's my new jogging stroller, equipped with a big basket for Junah, a pedometer (which I still haven't figured out), lots of handy pockets and cup holders. And the best features are the speakers so I can use my iPod Shuffle without having to wear the ear pieces.

My friend, Sommer, and I have been working out every chance we get. Sometimes we wait until our husbands are home to watch the babies and then head to the gym. Other days, we just take the babies with us and strap them into our jogging strollers. It's so much harder to run while pushing a stroller, but we still manage to run about two miles. Abby Kate loves it and so does Junah, who rides in the basket underneath. There's an 8-mile paved path called Blackwater Trail that we usually go to.

At week seven, I've still got about five more pounds to lose before I get back to my pre-pregnancy weight. But it's coming off a lot faster than I thought it would. Along with the exercise, it may be because I'm on the go non-stop all day since having Abby Kate. I feel like I never sit down anymore! But I still have many more push-ups, sit-ups, lunges and squats to do before I get the muscle tone back. It's a welcomed challenge. I just can't tell you how great it is to feel "normal" again!!!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Abby Kate's Debut

Over the Thanksgiving holiday, my friend and old college roommate, Sara, hosted a "holding party" for Abby Kate. She let me invite way too many people and then entertained them perfectly with her amazing party-planning talents. She and her husband, Tommy, welcomed 50+ of our dearest friends to their new [BEAUTIFUL!] home. Sara made some delicious appetizers and a beautiful pink cake with Abby Kate's initials. We so appreciated their thoughtfulness in having the party so we could introduce everyone to Abby Kate without having to take her around everywhere visiting people during our short stay in Kentucky.

I found such joy in introducing our daughter to our friends back home. Watching them smile at her and hold her was so special to me. Abby Kate was an angel the entire night. She was awake and perfectly content and bright-eyed, then fell asleep toward the end. I know she won't remember this night, but I always will. Thanks again, Sara and Tommy!!! And thanks to all who came - it was wonderful seeing each of you!

With Sara and her beautiful cake!

Some of the guests

With "Grammy" (so weird to think of my mom as a grandmother now!)

With my sorority sisters. From left: Sara, Ellen (who's expecting!), Meg, Me and AK, Tricia, Maggie, Tracy and Meredith.

Meredith helps with the burping.

Some quality time with Pawpaw.

With Lynds and Meg.

Mike and I had a great time!.

Ellen getting some practice.

Abby Kate meets Izzy, my friend, Liz's baby

Some good food!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

All Smiles

Abby Kate is growing so fast. She looks bigger to me every day. She is up to 9.5 lbs! That may not sound like much, but the doctors seem to think that's great progress in just six weeks. (She weighed 6 lbs, 15 oz at birth.) She has a lot more personality now. She has started to really smile in the past two weeks. It is so cute! I could spend all day just trying to get her to smile. Watching her light up warms my heart!

We have successfully moved her from the Pack-n-Play in our room to the crib. She was sleeping between four and five hours at night, but she's having her 6-week growth spurt, so she's up every three hours on the dot this week.

We are all still battling some sniffles, but I'm happy to report that the Wallace family is feeling much better. I have been busy catching up on my work, getting birth announcements out, getting Christmas cards out, keeping up with household stuff and trying to get a workout in every day. Every time I start on something, I have to stop to tend to Abby Kate. It's so hard to finish anything! Going to the mall with a newborn is difficult I've found, so I try to wait until Mike is home to watch her while I do our Christmas shopping. Fighting the crowds with a stroller is no fun!