Tuesday, March 23, 2010

We've Moved!

Since the Murphy family will be moving on Saturday (hallelujah, Praise Jesus, our days as River City Real Estate tenants are almost over!) I thought this blog might like a new home as well.

Here's where you can find us.

Please excuse the dust as I spruce up the new place.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Month 3

Jack, you've reached a milestone in your sleeping in your third month of life: you're establishing your nap schedule. Up until a few weeks ago, your naps were 45 minutes each, but now they are getting longer and longer, typically 1.5-2 hours. We owe this development to a couple of things: from what I've read, you are just now becoming biologically able to nap for longer periods, and...YOU FOUND YOUR THUMB!!! You've been working on this since you were born, but you finally are able to get your thumb in your mouth and keep it there.

I can't tell you how excited your Daddy and I are for this new feat. Now, when you wake up at the end of your first sleep cycle (about 45 minutes into a nap), you get fussy for a few moments, and then you start sucking away on your thumb and drift blissfully back to sleep again. No more searching for that pacifier, no more going into your room to try to get you to take the pacifier and get a few more minutes of sleep. You're growing in your ability to soothe yourself, and we're so proud of you, since it's such an important part of your development. If you read this when you're older, you'll no doubt think we're crazy for being so excited about thumb-sucking, but you'll understand when you've got kids and you're losing sleep.

As a result of this we've changed how we wrap you up to sleep. We've swaddled you from the beginning, but didn't do that great of a job until we started using a Miracle Blanket thanks to two of our friends who graciously let us borrow their blankets. That thing is true to it's name. From day one of using it, you fell asleep faster and slept longer. You loved it, and would start to relax as soon as we started wrapping your arms up. We liked to call you, "our little burrito."

But since finding your thumb, we started swaddling you with your hands free; not quite a burrito anymore, but still pretty cute:

As far as nighttime sleep, you've slept for 12 hours on two occasions, but you aren't ready to let go of that last middle of the night feeding for good yet. I'm okay with that for now.

Speaking of feedings, nursing you has gone amazingly well. You like to eat. A lot. Thankfully, the good Lord has blessed me with lots and lots of milk. We're a good pair. It took about 6 weeks for us to really find our rhythm, we were both new at it, but now it feels like I've been doing this for years. I'm so grateful because I know it can be a really difficult process, and it's great to know you're getting the best food you can get. And hello, it's free!

I think it's safe to say from your weight (16 pounds) and your fabulous chubby belly, you're getting plenty to eat:

You continue to melt our hearts with your smiling, squealing, and "laughing." I don't think we've heard an official laugh yet, but you're getting there. Your temperament is starting to emerge, and we love it. I keep hearing people describe you as, "content." It's helpful for me to hear this, because taking care of your every need sometimes keeps me from taking a step back and enjoying the big picture. It's true, you are a content baby; the only times you get upset are when you're hungry or tired (or when you get a shot, like today; you had two and your sad cry broke my heart, poor guy). Though recently, you've become more sensitive to things that surprise you. A couple of times you've been startled by people and your lower lip pouts out and you let out the most pitiful little cry. But, it's just a part of you becoming more aware of your surroundings, which is fun to watch.

Another new thing you're experimenting with is grabbing. You've grabbed your feet once or twice, and you're starting to grab some of your toys. One day you were in your swing (which you still love) and as you started to drift off to sleep, you held on to a little bear you were playing with. It was pretty stinking adorable.

I could continue to go on and on about all the things you're doing and the way you're soaking in everything about your world, but to be a good mom to you, I need some sleep, so I'll end with this: we're so thankful that you're our son.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Playing Dress-Up

Before we had Jack, our dog Owen was our pride and joy. We loved taking silly pictures of her and family photos of the three of us.

It's much more fun and a heck of a lot cuter to dress up our little baby Jack.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

A Boppy Comparison

Here's Jack at about a week old:

About a month old:

And here at about 2 months:

Caught mid-sneeze.

And finally, these are from today, he's just shy of 3 months:

We'll probably be forcing the poor guy to carry around the boppy so we can get a photo-op when he's graduating from college.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Meeting the Great-Grandparents

Jack had the privilege of meeting some of his great-grandparents this past weekend. We drove up to Pittsburgh to spend the weekend with GiGi and Pappy (Jean and Jack), James's mom's parents. It was also Jack's first overnight trip away from home. But the most special part of the trip, was being able to introduce Jack to one of the two great-grandfather's that he's named after.

There was lots of oohing and ahhing over, and cuddling of baby Jack. He also got to meet James's aunt & uncle and some of their kids and spouses. He doesn't remember since he was sleeping, but he also Skyped with his dad's cousin's baby girl (I have no idea what she would be to Jack, fourth cousin by marriage once removed? who knows.) who was born two weeks after he was. You can read all about the adorable Ava Faulhaber here.

We had a great time. Beside the obvious enjoyment of being with family we don't get to see very often, we were so glad to get away from our apartment for a bit (if you've ever been over and experienced the ridiculous noise levels, you'll understand completely), and just get out of town. We've spent so much of the last two and a half years traveling and moving, we were getting a bit stir crazy.

Jack traveled really well, we were so grateful. We made it the 6 our drive with only one stop each way.

Jack, meet Jack.

and meet your great-grandmother Jean, get ready for lots of fun spoiling which you are sure to love.

Second cousin Mae-lin. I guess they're second cousins, I'm not really sure how all those extended family relations work.

There was so much snow there, we were dying to let Jack play in the snow for the first time. James found a snow suit on Craig's List right down the street from his grandparents house. As you can see, Jack was thrilled.

"I can't put my arms down!" A gold star for you if you know that movie quote.

I'm envisioning many adventures ahead for the two of them that will be sure to make my heart stop a few times.

Good times, great hospitality, and wonderful family.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Mr. Chatterbox

Lately our little man has been chattin' it up. We have little "conversations" and it cracks me up. Everyday he seems to smile and laugh more and more. Here's a taste of it:

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Bizarre Produce

One thing we never lacked during the first two months of Jack's life was delicious food, and not because we were doing any of the cooking. So many people prepared incredible meals for us and even delivered them. We ate so well and we are so grateful for those gifts of service.

I knew having a newborn would be a lot of work, but I didn't anticipate just how much I would dread having to cook a meal when dinnertime crept around. But thanks to our awesome friends and family, we never once had to do anything more complicated than put something in the oven or punch buttons on the microwave.

As a result of these glorious meals given to us, the only food cabinets I opened were the ones containing the cereal and granola bars. These onions are proof of that. We found them the other day; I'm not sure how long they have been there, but they're definitely older than Jack is.

Kinda scary, don't you think?

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Month #2

Dear Mr. Jack,

That is one of the many nicknames we have for you. In your second month of life, you continue to put smiles on people's faces. We hear a lot of, "he's so cute!" and while many babies are cute, you are especially cute. You've started smiling much more and you're finding your voice. You've been cooing some, and doing lots of squealing and making gurgle noises, it's so much fun to have this kind of conversation with you, it seems like you'll have a lot to say when you add words to your repertoire of sounds.

Growing is something you do well. At your 2 month check-up you weighed 14 pounds and were 24 inches long, that means you're in the 95th percentile for your age. You were really brave when it came time for a shot. You made a really sad face, whimpered a bit and then laughed at me a minute later. The worst part was when we had to take the band-aid off later that night. Next time we'll just do without the band-aid

You're noticing your surroundings so much more; a couple of days ago you couldn't tear your eyes away from a tree for 10 minutes. You love watching your mobile, seeing yourself in the mirror, being in your swing, and just yesterday you started splashing around in your bath for the first time. But your favorite thing of all is seeing people stick their tongue out at you, you think that is the funniest thing you've ever seen, and you work really hard at mirroring our actions. We love playing that game with you and don't care at all that it makes us look like fools.

One day as I was putting you to sleep, you were staring up at me, wide awake, with your beautiful blue eyes. Suddenly, you gave me a completely unsolicited smile. You melted my heart, once again.

A song I've been listening to recently sums up how your Daddy and I feel:
You will lose your baby teeth, at times you'll lose your faith in me; you will lose a lot of things, you cannot lose my love.
You may lose your appetite, your guiding sense of wrong and right; you may lose your will to fight, but you cannot lose my love.
You will lose your confidence, in times of trial your common sense; you may lose your innocence, but you cannot lose my love.
Many things can be misplaced, your very memories be erased, no matter what the time or space, you cannot lose my love.
-Sarah Groves

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

It's Been Too Long

Surely you're dying to see more pictures of Jack. No? Well, you'll have to forgive me, he's by far the most exciting thing going on around here, so pictures of Jack are what you're gonna get.

The way he loves to stick his tongue out is really cute right now, but I imagine there will come a day when his motives change, and we're not going to think it's very cute.

But if he grins at me like this, he might get away with most anything.

See all those chins? I think he grows a new one each day. This kid enjoys his food.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Our Little Man

His little hands and little feet are just two of the things I want to burn into my memory because he will continue to grow, faster than I'd like, and there will be a day when I will be shocked at how quickly the time has gone and we will be thinking back to the days when he was this little.

But that day hasn't come yet, so I'll attempt to treasure every moment and keep soaking up grins like these:

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

The Many Faces of Jack

Though I took these photos, it was Valerie, who is far more creative and witty than I am, who wrote the fabulous commentary to go along with each photo.

"Why am I not eating? What is happening here?"

"That's shocking."

"Go Phillies!!!"

"Again with the not eating."

"Oh Mama, you're so funny."

"How you doooooooin?"

"Well, this is fun!"

"I'm impossibly sweet and worth all of the sleepless nights because, c'mon, look at this face."

Monday, December 28, 2009

Jack's One Month Birthday

(I've enjoyed Valerie's monthly posts about JR so much that I've decided to shamelessly copy her and do the same for our son Jack. Hope you don't mind Val, thanks for the idea!)

I imagine I'll be saying this a lot throughout the life of our son, but seriously, where did this past month go?! It's hard to believe this beautiful little man has been in our lives for a month. He definitely took his time getting here, he must have been incredibly comfortable since he was almost two weeks late and I was in labor for 32 hours before he made his grand, and miraculous, entrance. Eventually I'm going to write out his birth story and will share that with you here, but right now I'm busy taking care of a newborn.

As many of you know, we lost our first baby to a miscarriage in 2008, so being able to meet our second child was a joyful occasion on so many levels. One of the thoughts I had during Jack's first week was how exciting it is that we will get to tell him about his sibling that he will one day meet in heaven.

So a bit about our little guy. He is named Jack Charles after his two living great-grandfathers: my dad's father and James's mom's father. They are both wise, honorable, caring, godly, family-loving men and we would be so proud if Jack grew up to have traits like them. Of course, we would love him just the same if he didn't, but we liked the idea of honoring family members who have had a huge impact on our lives and having their legacy live on in our family.

So far, Jack does a few things really well, like most newborns, he likes to sleep, eat, and fill his diaper. Let's talk about the eating. We're breastfeeding (I say we because it's definitely a collective effort between me, Jack, and James. I wouldn't be able to get by without James to encourage me and bring me all sorts of stuff when Jack is eating. My husband is amazing.) and though he's a fast eater, he must get lots of food in a short time because he is gaining weight incredibly fast and becoming a little chubster, which I love. He was incredibly adorable when he was born, but chub makes him even cuter. Eighteen days after he was born, he had already packed on two pounds, doubling the average daily weight gain for newborns. See for yourself:

Other than eating, here are some of his other likes and dislikes:

Jack likes:
-Taking baths, as long as it's not a sponge bath, and only if we run the hot water before hand to get the bathroom really steamy.
-Looking at any kind of black and white pattern
-Stretching and yawning. It's so adorable, one day I'll record it and share it with you.
-Sleeping in his car seat when we're out. He's a marathon sleeper in that thing.
-Snuggling. This was clear from the first moment I held him.
-Folding his legs up like a little frog.
-Being swaddled.
-Holding his hands by his face (a reminder of one of the reasons labor was so difficult for me) and rubbing his head and face with his fingers. He's fast asleep in this picture:

-Being in a baby carrier. I think it reminds him of being in the womb.
-Being held like this when his belly hurts:

-Being sung to.
-Getting silly kisses from his dad.

Jack doesn't like:
-Being naked when it's cold. I don't like it either, so it's understandable.
-Having clothing pulled over his head. Any outfit with all buttons or a zipper up the front are our favorite.
-When we don't put him down for his nap when he's ready. When we miss that window of opportunity, he let's us know that he's not happy about it.
-To wait too long to eat. When that belly is empty, he's ready and can't quite understand why he's being made to wait any longer than five minutes. Then we hear what we have dubbed his "angry cry," but it's more like a guttural yell. He's got two parents that really like to eat, I should've seen this coming.

This little man has already brought so much joy into our lives, it's so exciting to look forward to watching him grow and change into the person he will become.

We love you so much Jack, and that will never change.