Sunday, September 23, 2012

So long again

Oops! I accidentally published the wrong address to my new blog. It is I also corrected the address in the original post.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

So long, farewell

Well, not really. I just have a new blog and won't be posting here any more. Check me out at

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Fog

I promised myself when I was pregnant that I wouldn't just let the newborn phase just slide on by this time around.  I would document, blog, photograph the heck out of it so that I could remember all the little details that my sleep-fogged brain would so eaily forget.  And yet here I am 5 weeks later and the most I've been able to muster is a few photos on Facebook and a single post here.

It's hard to come up with a coherent, writable thought when I spend the day nursing to the never-ending soundtrack of Barney and Yo-Gabba Gabba episodes.  I find it far easier to contribute to the mindlessness by spending my online time on Pinterest and such exciting tasks as cleaning out my email. 

I don't thing the brain foginess is avoidable.  I think it's nature's way of ensuring we have more children.  Why would I have any more if I remembered every single hormonally influenced moment of the first few weeks?  How much it hurts to just sit down in the first week, how overwhelmed I felt when I remembered how hard nursing a very very newborn can be, how frustrated I was when the baby started that first crying jag and I realized all the tricks that worked withMichaela and Rafael didn't work with Gabrielle!  Already those awful moments are slipping into oblivion.  The only memories that seem to really stick for longer than a few weeks are the sweetest ones.  The half-formed sleep smiles, the tiny fingers curled around my own, the gentle feeling of her nursing as I fall asleep, her big beautiful eyes staring into mine for the first time.

Who needs blog posts when you have memories like those?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Gabrielle's Birth Story

Welcome baby Gabrielle!

Gabrielle was my first non-induction baby! 
We had a voluntary induction scheduled for the morning of February 16th, but contractions woke me up about 4am that morning.  By the time we got to the hospital for our 7am induction time, I was already in active labor and was 6cm and 80% effaced!  The midwife and nurse on call that day were absolutely amazing, and mostly left me alone as I entered my "zone".  I was able to use deep relaxation techniques to put myself almost to sleep through the contractions up until about noon which is when back labor started to kick in.

Let me just say how much I HATE back labor.  I had it with Rafael too, and it is the absolute worst!  I had about an hour of IV meds at which point I was already 9cm so they wouldn't let me have any more.  I had about an hour of really hard labor before I felt the need to push.  I had to push very slowly because her cord was wrapped around her neck, but she was born at 2:06pm - a perfectly healthy beautiful baby girl!  Once they were sure her oxygen was fine I got to cuddle with her for a nice long time.  My dad, who was watching Michaela and Rafael, stopped by and visited us with the kids.  They were happy to see the baby but I don't think it was really real for them yet.

We went home the next afternoon and my dad brought the kids home the morning after that.  Philip was luckily able to take a couple of extra days off of work (so 4 in total) and we took the time to get used to having 3 kids!

Things have been going pretty well!  While the older kids have watched WAY more TV than is healthy for them, I've been pleasantly surprised by how much easier the adjustment is going this time around.  I think it's because Michaela and Rafael have each other to play with and are already fairly independent.  I can't believe it's already been 3 weeks!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Gabrielle Susan Lucero-Watje

Holidays in a Nutshell

Here are a few pictures from our holidays.  Philip always gets a few weeks off for Christmas break so we definitely took advantage!
We had quite a few snow days!  The kids thoroughly enjoyed playing and making snowmen!

Lots of reading and dancing to Christmas music to keep ourselves busy during the days we were snowed in!
 We went on lots of fun holiday themed outings.
Twinkle Light Parade - it was so cold!

Having fun at the Christmas Corral

Enjoying dinner at Supper with Santa at the Aquarium, and then looking at all the Christmas lights at the Botanic Gardens

We also did lots of Christmas-y goodness like decorating the tree, making gingerbread houses, Christmas cookies, and reading Christmas books.

Christmas was so fun and laid back.  We spent the morning opening our simple presents at home and then spent the rest of the day haning out with family at my sister's house.

The kids enjoyed the rest of Philip's Christmas break by going to the science museum and on having seperate daddy days.

We also got to spend lots of quality time with friends who were in town or who were off of work.
All in all, we had a ton of fun during the holidays!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Rafael's Birthdays

My little man turned 2 in November!  What an awful mama that I'm not even writing about it until February!  The lucky little man got 3 different birthday celebrations because of all the craziness of Thanksgiving and surrounding weeks.

For his "friend" birthday party, I had fun putting together a dinosaur themed brunch party.

We had a Dino Dig Site outside which the kids largely ignored because it was a beautiful day and ohmygoodness LEAVES!!!!

I saw a neat idea for "volcano lava cakes" on Pinterest, but they didn't turn out quite as beautifully as I was hoping.  Oh well, they were still delicious!!!!  (And huge thanks to my friend Tina for helping me make them!)

Rafael got TONS of boy toys including various cars galore!  We have a whole toy bin dedicated to cars now!
I made little favors out of leftover Halloween candy whoppers.
It was such a fun day!

He also celebrated with our choir family at one of our choir practices.
Sitting with his Nina Amy

Blowing out his birthday candles with his sister and Nina's Andrea & Amy

Enjoying his dessert with his Nina's

Opening his present from his ninas.
Here he is playing with his gift.  Such a cutie!
His THIRD celebration (what a lucky boy!) was on his actual birthday, which fell on Thanksgiving this year! We celebrated with family after our big dinner by having him blow out a couple of candles on a cupcake.

All in all, I think his birthday was thoroughly celebrated this year!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

My new niece

I have a new adorable little niece!  It was fun being pregnant at the same time as my sister - but not the first time!  I was also pregnant at the same time as my oldest sister and that was cool too.  It is nice to have cousins who are the same age - or close enough!

I combined forces with my sister's mother-in-law and provided all the decorations and games for my sister's shower in October.  It was so much fun!
The invitations that I made
 I didn't get any other shot of the decorations, which is a shame because they were so cute!  I did a pink/green/brown butterfly theme.  So fun!
Playing a blindfolded diapering the baby game

My 7 year old niece was the fastest!

My sister with my Grandma, Aunts, Cousin and niece and nephew

My 2 sisters

My sister with me and the kiddos

2 pregnant sisters!  It's funny because I felt HUGELY pregnant and the time and you can hardly even tell!
My adorable niece was born in the wee early hours of Nov. 19th.
Meeting her for the first time

A month later at Christmas
I just saw her again on Tuesday and while I didn't get a picture she was wide awake, alert and watching the other kiddos play!  I can't believe how fast they grow up!

Fall Recap - Little Stuff

While I was doing my last post and uploading photos of all the exciting things we did this past Fall, I realized that most of the photos I wanted to post were completely unexciting, everyday things.  So here's what happened in our day-to-day life this fall.

Rafael started joining Michaela and I during our school-at-home time.  It was a rocky start while we figured each other out.  Like me learning never to leave Michaela's dry-erase-marker work out with him nearby...

And to put a lock on my homeschooling cabinet!

They both had way too many moments of general cuteness!

They both got used to the idea of "babies in tummies" since both I and their Tia Racquel were pregnant.
This is supposed to be the baby in their Tia's tummy

This is supposed to be the baby in my tummy
They had a lot of snuggle time with Philip and I

Rafael proved he was a hungry growing boy by always eating all of Michaela's food after she ate her "required" 3 bites.
He also started becoming more independent - entering the "I do it all by myself" phase!

Michaela finally had legs long enough to ride the tricycle she got last Christmas - and she took her brother along for the ride!
The kids were obsessed with our massive leave piles out front.  All I had to do to get a few minutes to myself were bundle them up and take them to the front yard.  They would play for a good 45 minutes in those leaves while I read or worked on the computer in my little lawn chair!

I love looking back at pictures and watching my little ones grow up!