I’m feeling a bit sorry for myself today.
Today was supposed to be the first day of my holiday vacation. My mom was going to come and spend a few days before the rest of the family came, and we were going to shop, eat sushi, and get up to our elbows in sugar and flour and bake until our wrists and feet ached. We’d been planning for months.
But I’ve got the flu.
Last year, we had strep throat over Christmas, and missed out on a lot of revelry. This year, I’m the third in the house to get influenza in the span of two weeks, and we’re holding our breath (literally and figuratively) that Peanut and Panda don’t get it.
So instead of a day of baking and Bing Crosby and much needed time with my mama, I’m having a sick day. I have a hard time being idle, so I tried to think of something low-key that I can do that is both restful and mentally stimulating. I decided to make this post.
I haven’t really blogged regularly since May of 2013, when I was still pregnant with Panda. I never blogged about his birth, I didn’t blog about our massive, impulsive, practically-instantaneous move from South Carolina to Ohio, and none of the minutiae in between. The supreme irony of it all is that I work every day supporting bloggers, and barely do it myself. My resolutions for 2015 are to be less busy, get back to photographing my family more, and blog more.
In this post, I’m going to catch up on 2013, in photos. Let’s start with Panda’s birth on July 27, 2013.
I was almost 42 weeks pregnant, and my labor started around 2:00 am, with my contractions only about two and a half minutes apart. We got to the hospital just before 5:00 am, and my water broke around 8:30. I joked that he was going to be born before 9:00 am, and he made his entrance after five pushes, at 8:59, at 8 pounds, 3 ounces. Almost seven hours to the minute, after my active labor started. He had to spend a few hours in the NICU because of meconium, and I didn’t get my hands on him until around 11:00 am. I don’t remember many times I’d felt so bereft in my entire life. I pumped eight milliliters of colostrum for him while he was in the NICU, and obsessed about it affecting his nursing. My worries were unfounded; he was still at his birthweight when we left the hospital two days later. He was our smallest newborn, but now, he’s enormous, just a few pounds lighter than his three-year-old sister.
The girls settled right into life as big sisters once we were all home on Minstrels Way.
Two Little Monkeys Photography did an amazing newborn photo session for us.
My sweet boy even slept for mama for some photos at twenty days old.
Days at home alone with the kids were long, but looking back, I realize that the time was incredibly short. This feels like a lifetime ago.
Peanut turned two (covered with bruises from daycare tumbles) and Panda turned one month old on the same day – August 27th.
At the end of August, we took what we didn’t know at the time would be our last trip to Myrtle Beach as residents of South Carolina. We decided about a week after we got home that we were going to try to move to Ohio. I’m so glad the kids got to see their Great-Grandmother Rose.
The only photos I have from most of September and October are iPhone photos. The first POD arrived at our house in South Carolina on September 13th, five days after we officially decided that we were going to move. Before our house was officially on the market. Before either of us had jobs or house prospects in Ohio. And a nine week old. Wow.
The only photo that I can find of Pumpkin’s birthday was an iPhone photo, taken the morning before she went to daycare. You can see the air mattress on the floor of our bedroom behind her; we were two days away from moving. I’d posted the following message on Facebook along with the photo:
“Today, she is four. Frazzle haired, her face sporting scratches from her baby sister’s fingernails and a scraped nose from a fall at the park, she’s my feisty, mighty little girl.
We’re going to have cake and balloons on Saturday at grandma and grandpa’s. Today will be her last day at “school”, so they’ll sing her happy birthday there. She is so excited to be a big girl now.
Happy birthday to my firstborn!”
We stayed with my mom and dad for about a week before finding a one-bedroom suite at the StayBridge extended stay hotel in Dublin. It was close to the zoo, which we got a membership for immediately. It was a very hectic time, with house hunting, job hunting for Keith, and the beginning of my Happiness Engineer Trial with Automattic. It was also blessedly simple; breakfast was made for us every morning, and three days a week, dinner was included with our stay. There was no cleaning to be done, we were close to family, we lucked out and found a great daycare that was close, Keith found a job very soon after we moved, and I loved every second of my trial with Automattic. The realtor we started working with was a dream, and she helped us find our dream house, within just a few weeks.
I didn’t take many photos of the kids or of our new house for the first few weeks of being there, but I did get my camera out to take some photos of my handsome fellow on November 16, when he was just shy of four months old.
By Thanksgiving, we still had boxes everywhere, and weren’t even remotely settled in. I got my camera out for a few snaps throughout the day, but it wasn’t near a comprehensive story of the day. We had snow on the ground, but despite that, we stuck with our fledgling tradition of grilling out on Thanksgiving. None of us are big fans of turkey, so The Captain grilled baby back ribs, and I made some yummy Brussels sprouts, dressing with cranberries and sausage, and sweet potatoes.
December 2nd was my first day as a full-time Automattician, Peanut discovered my beloved old teddy bear Theodore, and Panda discovered video games with daddy.
On December 7th, my parents came over, and my mom and I did our annual holiday baking. Panda loved playing peekaboo with his cousin.
On December 15, the kids’ grandma “GeGe”, and great-aunt came for a visit from South Carolina, and Ohio treated them to some even more frigid weather than usual. A good time was had by all, though I’m fairly sure that the sharing of the joke teeth is when we all dosed each other with the strep throat that held us hostage over the holidays.
Christmas morning 2013. I can’t believe it is seven days until Christmas 2014, and I’ve just now gotten around to editing and sharing these.
Finally, the last two photos I took in 2013, snuggles with my two littlest after Christmas morning revelry. Here’s to a less busy, more photographed, healthier, bloggier 2015.