Alexa is such a wonderful blessing in our lives and we are so grateful we got to have this first Christmas with her and spend it with our family's as well. Here are some more pictures we thought we would share:
First family Christmas photo
Alexa with Grandma & Grandpa Ladd
Alexa with Aunt Taryne & cousin Loghen
Alexa and Uncle John (looking good with his new haircut)
Callie did an excellent job helping John open his gifts. It was so funny!
Sara and her girls (Callie has been Sara's dog for 16 years. She lives with Grandma and Grandpa Dorn now though).
Alexa with Grandma & Grandpa Dorn
Alexa received many wonderful gifts for Christmas but some of the most special ones were the gifts that were homemade:
This past Sunday, we had family Christmas get together's on both sides of our families. This was the first time many people in our family's had seen Alexa. We were supposed to wait 8 weeks before Alexa was around a big group of people but since it is Christmas we decided to break the rules. It just wouldn't seem like Christmas if we didn't get to spend it with our family and that's why we moved back to Nebraska after all. I must say Alexa handled the busy day quite well.
The Chamberlain clan (Sara's Mom's side). Just pretend Paul's face isn't cut off in this picture...
4 Generations - Grandma Celia, Great-Grandpa Gene, Sara, and Alexa.
Paul's niece, Loghen, was so very cute with Alexa. She had been waiting to meet her and is looking forward to when uncle Paul will let her hold her. I don't think Loghen expected Alexa to cry quite so much so I bet when Alexa calms down a bit the two of them will be good buds. I can remember having some older cousins when I was young that I really looked up to and looked forward to seeing whenever I could. I hope it will be that same way with these two!
This week Paul and I learned a trick - if we make fools of ourselves, Alexa will stop crying and get happy really fast. It kind of reminds me of the movie "Big Daddy" where the little boy, Julian, thinks it's funny when Adam Sandler gets hurt.
Alexa's favorite thing is when we vibrate our lips and hum. This gets her to stop crying, start eating, wake up, get instantly happy, etc. It pretty much works every time. The problem is this isn't something we can do 24/7. Our lips start hurting pretty fast and after so many minutes of doing this my lips just stop working. Sometimes singing works too and I've learned that I really do need to learn more children's songs.
So in each of these pictures, I guarantee we're making funny noises...
This past Sunday, the 14th, two of my Dad's sisters (Barb & Linda) threw me a baby shower. Over 20 of my relatives from both sides of my family came and it was great to see everyone. Alexa didn't get to go because it is still recommended that she stay at home and limit her exposure to the cold and germs. She will soon be able to get out into the world though and we are very excited for this!!
This is the cake made by my Aunt Linda - yum yum!
Aunt Linda cutting the cake
Grandma Amy with one her many great-grandchildren, Jacob Alexander.
My cousin, Lisa, is in the blue and Aunt Barbie is in the white turtleneck. My cousin Amy is in the red in the background and her husband, Tony, is there too (he and my uncle Ralph hid in the family room during the shower).
Alexa's due date was supposed to be today! She decided to come a bit early as we all know and she continues to keep us on our toes. I have a feeling we're never going to have her completely figured out - she'll just keep the surprises coming.
I've learned that being a parent of an infant turns you into a detective of sorts. When Alexa cries, I don't really know why - is she cold/hot, hungry, need changed, need to be burped, uncomfortable, wants to cuddle, or ? We have been able to figure out her cries to some extent but it's still difficult to know if a cry means something more serious or not. For the most part Alexa is easily comforted and I think she just likes to be held. However, Alexa has been having what appears to be abdominal discomfort for the past few weeks. Some days are better than others but at times she makes it seem like it really is bothering her quite a lot. Sometimes she can be comforted and sometimes not. We did talk to the pediatrician about it last week and she suspected that Alexa has a sensitivity to the milk/dairy that I consume in my diet and recommended that I cut it out to see if that helps. Well I did do this (which is not as easy as it may sound - read the labels on your food and you'd be surprised what has milk in it) and we haven't seen as big of a difference as we would've liked. I also cut out all citris (which is hard for a juice lover like me) and all carbonated beverages. We're still in the process of figuring out what the source of her discomfort is and if anyone has any suggestions on what we may try we'd be glad to hear them.
The good news is Alexa is gaining weight like crazy and is definitely catching up considering she was so early. At her last appointment, she had gained 18 ounces in 2 weeks. She is still very short (only at 5% on the growth chart for full-term babies her age) but I figure she'll just fit in with both sides of our family that way.
So...we don't have a lot of pictures from this week since a lot of her awake time is spent being held or being upset. However, here are a few that I thought were pretty precious...
So I know this post should've been up a long time ago. I was waiting on the 2nd window valance to arrive because the one that came with the bed set was 6" too short (which I'm sure was very much planned by the manufacturer to sell more product - smart!) Anyway, here is Alexa's room and as you can see there is very little pink or purple because Paul had a very strong aversion to such colors (he has since lessened up on his dislike of these colors which is very helpful). Paul tried to explain to me that it was silly to buy a 6 piece baby bed set because it is recommended that you do not use the bumper pad or the baby quilt. I of course in my pregnant state did not listen to him but he was probably right. We don't use the baby quilt or bumper pad but I included them in this picture to pretend it was worth the money we spent. Paul was right again - though we'll just keep this a little secret.
The most comfy rocking chair in the world given to us by Grandpa Donn and Grandma Cheryl. This chair has been a lifesaver for those late night feedings!!