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Our Story

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Ben and I met in 1996, began dating in 1999 and married in 2001. Now 20 years and 2 children later, we have returned to where our life together began. Ben works for the Federal Reserve and I have the privilege of staying home with our two precious boys.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Something Old and Something New


No one is getting married, so there's nothing borrowed or blue, but this high chair was Ben's when he was a baby(more than 33 years old, much to Ben's devastation) and of course, our Little Man is 5 months new! Ben's Dad has passed the high chair on to us. Unfortunately, it's not exactly up to the safety standards of today so we have a new one for Ethan, but it's definitely sentimental sitting in the corner of our dining room.

All I Want for Christmas is My 2 Front Teeth







I can't believe it! Today is Ethan's 5 month birthday and we already have teeth! There are no pictures to prove it other than drool and chewing on whatever he can(including Lucy), but our Little Man has 2 budding tiny bottom front teeth! If you run your fingers across his gums, 2 razor sharp little teeth have come through. We have broken out the Tylenol, Orajel, and the teething tablets(not all at the same time, of course), but the poor little guy is hurting and so fussy that he just wants to be held.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Baby's First Thanksgiving




As the bib says(not that you can see, though), this was Ethan's first Thanksgiving and we celebrated by introducing cereal. Over the last few weeks, we have been checking to see if he was ready by bringing our fork or spoon to his mouth as we were eating dinner just to see if he was interested and would open his mouth. He hasn't been the least bit interested and would sometimes even make funny faces or curl up his cute little nose.

Well, my Mom was here for Thanksgiving and she was holding the baby as we were eating dessert. She remarked that he looked interested in her plate. I told her what we had been doing, so she brought her fork close to his mouth and as she did he leaned forward, opened his mouth, and attempted a big bite of coconut cake! My mom quickly took her fork away from his mouth, but he did such a good job that there was a piece of coconut dangling from his lips. I certainly did not want coconut cake to be his first meal, so we quickly mixed up some cereal for him try. He was pretty interested in the first few bites and looked completely adorable with it all over him. So much for holding out until he was 6 months old!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Fall Fun


The weather outside has been perfect the last week or so. While I am at work, Ethan spends his days with Ms. Kristin who loves and adores him. She entertains him and plays with him all day long. Here lately, they have been spending some time enjoying the fresh air as you can tell by these cute pictures. Hopefully soon, I will be the one taking these pictures and not missing all of this precious time with my baby boy!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Having a Blast!


Ben snapped these pictures this morning---after I went to WORK! I totally missed out on the fun time and the giggles as he played in his exersaucer! Of course, the mornings are the most exciting times of Ethan's day and now I must miss them every day. This has been my first week to return to school after staying home with him for 4 months and it has MOST definitely not been an easy transition for me. It is so hard leaving him knowing that I am not going to see him until the end of the day when he is winding down.
Don't get me wrong, he is in fabulous hands while I am gone and Ben has just begun working from home every Thursday and Friday so he now has extra time to spend with him. While I am thrilled that his every want and need is being met and he is getting tons of love and attention, I am saddened by the fact that he is not getting it from me. I want to be the one showering him with attention every day. This is my first week back and I am so thankful that we only have one full week until Thanksgiving holidays!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

5lbs 15 oz

I went to see baby Aubrey yesterday and she is absolutely beautiful! Looking back, the unbiased Mommy in me can say that my Ethan was born with a jaundiced little squished up face, but at that time I thought he was the most handsome and perfect baby God had ever put on this Earth. Now I know that he didn't become the most perfect and handsome baby until now. Little Aubrey does not have a squished up face and is not jaundiced. She weighs 5 lbs 15 oz and is so tiny. What is amazing about this is that this is the exact same weight Ethan was when he came home from the hospital and even though it was only 4 months ago, I can't remember him ever being that small. Aubrey fit in 1 arm and although I am sure that he did, too, it just seems like it was so long ago. I just can't believe that he has grown so much in such a short time. Isn't it funny that even though my last post had a picture of him in his carseat when he came home from the hospital at that same weight, it took holding little Aubrey for me to truly realize how much he has grown! Is it crazy that I am already thinking how sweet it would be to have another one that little again?!?! Way too soon, I know!

Friday, November 6, 2009

This Is It

Ethan arriving home from the hospital at 2 days old.
Ethan at 16 weeks getting dressed after bathtime.


My baby boy is 17 weeks old today and this is it. My final day of being a full-time Mommy. This has been the most wonderful almost four months that I have ever known. There is a joy and happiness like no other that comes with parenthood. Each day is a new adventure watching Ethan grow, laugh, and be fascinated by his surroundings. He is perfect in every way and now I completely understand the rude people that I have heard say, "Oh, if you don't have children then you can't understand." I couldn't imagine ever saying that to someone, but there is some truth to it. Before he came along, Ben and I were different people and I must admit that we allowed our jobs to create our identity. Now that Ethan is here my world has been forever changed and as much as I love being a teacher, that title no longer holds my identity. Ben and I both wake up every morning and our first thoughts are about our son.

I must admit that I have done a lot of growing up with Ethan over the last few months. When he first came home from the hospital, he was so tiny and I was a little afraid of how I would handle being a new Mommy. But in the weeks after he was born, a new confidence and pride developed knowing that I was the person he relied on more than anyone else in the world. Of course, being the sole provider of his nourishment might have a little to do with that. The love that Ben and I have for this precious baby that God has allowed us to care for and raise is indescribable.

Ethan and I spend our days playing together, talking to each other, reading books, and dancing together. It is so sad to think that Monday morning will come and someone else is now going to have all of the time that up to this point has been Mommytime.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pumpkin Patch

I'm a little late getting these posted, but we ventured out to the Pumpkin Patch on Halloween morning with Leigh Ann and Alex. Trying to get the perfect timing between feedings and naptime is not easy, especially when the first Pumpkin Patch that you visit had NO pumpkins. So, we load back up and try another Pumpkin Patch. This one was much better! After trying to figure out how to prop up a baby that is too little to sit up by himself, Ethan finally got tired of giving smiles, but he was very interested in all of the little pumpkins.
I was really hoping that he would lean up against the big pumpkin behind him for just a few seconds so Daddy could snap a quick picture, but not so much. It's amazing how easy it is to get them to do things at home, but when it is showtime all is forgotten!

And this was the way our morning ended...a little tired of everyone messing with him. That's what we get for thinking that a picture with him and Alex would be just precious. He was asleep in my arms before we even got back to the car. Alas, no terrific Pumpkin Patch pictures but we will try again next year.

Monday, November 2, 2009

The Stare-down

The other day, I caught this picture. I was cracking up! It was hilarious watching Ethan and Lucy just stare at each other. You could just see their thinking. Ethan...Wow, I can't wait to get a hold of her! Lucy...So I guess he's not going anywhere and I have to get used to him taking up all of Mommy and Daddy's time.
It's great watching the two of them start to connect to each other. Lucy loves to come up and lick him and every time Lucy walks in front of him, Ethan just stares at her.



This is the most perfect age! Ethan is starting to reach for things and play with his toys(with help, of course). The other day, he was "playing" his piano all by himself! Everything is so engaging and he gets the giggles all of the time. His little face lights up and he is so excited at the littlest of things. He is talking all of the time and now he loves to grunt. I LOVE hearing him talk, it truly is the best sound that I have ever heard!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Best Sound Ever

video

Ethan and I were having a conversation the other day...of course, it was more of me talking than him, but I promise he said the word "Ever!" He was a little slow to get going and I was a little slow getting the video started because I missed recording the first half of our conversation, but here is my baby boy in all of his preciousness!

It's times like these that I begin to panic at the thought of returning to work in three short weeks and missing these moments that I now get to share with him every single day. What was I thinking when Ben told me to turn in my resignation after we came home from the hospital with our little bundle and I said "Oh no, I couldn't do that, I love my job!" I do love my job, but now I have another job that takes priority. The Mommy Balancing Act is about to begin.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

This is when Mommy has time...

As you may have noticed, the number of times I have updated our blog since Ethan was born has been slim, but now you understand when I have time to work on it. These moments are rare, but sometimes it's worth it to ignore the dishes and laundry and have some computer time all to myself!

Georgia Fan Already


Our little man is already rooting for the Georgia Bulldogs, making Daddy a very happy camper. Nothing beats watching the game in Dad's arms! I don't know what it is, but he is fascinated by it all. Next up...going to the game at Sanford Stadium, of course!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Favorite Video

I am not into YouTube nor do I watch music videos...but the video of the baby dancing to Beyonce's Single Ladies song is something that you have to see.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kr4mlmgO5Pc

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Plaster, Ink, and an Infant



Explanation not necessary, as you can see this was not a good experience. But...Mimi and I decided that we had to create the plaster footprint of Ethan's "newborn" feet before he truly no longer is anywhere close to the size of a newborn anymore. We received a casting kit at one of our baby showers and were told then that if we wanted it to turn out well we needed to do it while he was young. I had never done this before and didn't realize that plaster set so quickly so I think that we have a cast of his heel. We weren't even going to try to attempt his hand.
Then we felt the need to torment him more and make the ink prints for his baby book. If you're going to do it, why not go all the way. We thought this was going to be much easier...but we were WRONG! Not only was he mad, mad, mad at being victimized by the plaster, he decided to exercise his lungs to the best of his ability (in a VERY high-pitched SCREAM) as we manhandled him to get his hands and feet on the ink pads. Mimi and I decided the best approach was a 1, 2, 3 GO method. So, at the count of 3 we did it and I am so glad they are done. Not my finest or neatest moment, but boy am I glad not to have to think about doing that again anytime soon. OH, did I mention that we decided to do this a few hours before his newborn pictures for the birth announcement.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The First "Play Date"


Keller came to visit last week. She was born a week and 2 days after Ethan and weighed 3 pounds more than he did. Lindy and I spent the whole time holding them (she held Ethan and I held Keller) and talking about the ups and downs of first time mommyhood. Toward the end of the visit, they were pooped. Ethan, a little more so than Keller as we see here. If only, it were always this quiet...

Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Little Mamma


Meet Tisha. She is my Mom's dog and she stays with us whenever Mom spends the night or she is traveling for work. Since Mom helped us during our transition period the first few weeks after Ethan came home, Tisha stayed with us, too. From the moment that Ethan came into the house, she adopted him as her own. Anywhere we took the baby, she followed. If he was in the swing, she was sitting below it. If we were holding him on the couch, she was sitting at our feet watching him. If he was sleeping in the bassinet, she was perched as close as she could be without getting in the bassinet. But the funniest thing of all was when he would start to fuss or cry. She would just look at you and you could see her telling you in her doggy way, "HELLO...He's crying. You need to do something...NOW!" She even started to whimper when he cried. So, now we have two Mammas in the house. Our dog, Lucy, is a totally different story. She hasn't even connected that we have a new family member yet.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Chronicle of Our New Life- Pre and One Week Post

Get settled in because it will be a long one. Parts of this might be TMI for some. We begin with a picture of the nursery as it was before we left for the hospital.

And now for the story of labor and delivery...3: 50 pm Monday, July 6th- Just a regular weekly Dr. appt. but when I got there my blood pressure was high and I was preclamptic. Dr. Norwood did not play around: Total bedrest with bathroom privileges only. 11:30 pm Monday, July 6th- Blood pressure still had not come down so, Ben calls the Dr. He said to head to L & D for observation. (Terrific...my hospital bag was not completely packed yet). 4:30 am Tuesday, July 7th-Blood pressure is perfect (of course) and I am released to come back home. Wednesday, July 8th-Blood pressure up and down, but an uneventful day. 8:00 am Thursday, July 9th- Back at Dr. Norwood's office with through the roof blood pressure and increased protein, sent directly to L & D for induction (Lovely, I always wanted Pitocin...but we were prepared and had the hospital bag with us)

Our plan was for a natural delivery. It did not include a continuous monitor and being confined to a bed with an IV of Pitocin AND Magnesium at the same time. God is in control...So, with loved ones(Ben, Mimi, Amber, and Leigh Ann) surrounding us and our doula (Melissa) assisting, we set in for 9 LONG hours of natural labor. FYI: Pitocin is supposed to increase the strength of contractions to spur labor along, but magnesium can stall labor because it keeps you a little out of it so that you will not have a seizure and cut off the oxygen supply to the baby, therefore up the Pitocin to overcome the effects of the magnesium...FUN. After 9 hours of natural labor, still dilated at a 3, Dr. Norwood (and by this time, I'm all for it after the disappointment of only 3 centimeters dilated) tells me we're doing an epidural to see if that will help. Once again, an epidural was not in our birth plan. God is in control...After several hours on the epidural and STILL no progress, Dr. Norwood says C-section is the only way. WHAT!!! That was definitely NOT in our birth plan! God is in control...Ben and Mimi scrub in and go to the OR with me and we soon become the proud parents of the most perfectly precious baby boy that God could have ever given us (not biased, of course). Now that all is said and done, we find out that my perfect little boy spent all day long trying to get through the birth canal, but I have a cupped sacrum that blocks entrance to the birth canal. Result: C-section and a conehead.

So that I do not terrify anyone, all of these pictures are post-epidural...much more tame.






















Once we were moved upstairs to postpartum, we continued to feel so blessed by loved ones who cared enough about us to visit and meet our precious new bundle. Some of whom had already spent the entire night of L & D with me!



I just couldn't resist putting this one of Cam in because it was hilarious!







Pay no attention to how bad I look, still swollen from Head to Toe!














After arriving home, Mimi was waiting for us with baby boy ribbons on the mailbox and back gate and Leigh Ann had lunch ready for us, too. We are so spoiled! The next day, Mimi and Leigh Ann worked together and this precious stork arrived in our front yard.





I had to include Daddy's favorite picture. He thinks our child is so advanced that he is about to roll over and already smiling. I think it might be gas...










I also had to include this one of Jill, Cam, and Mimi. Jill really wanted Cam to hold Ethan, but he was terrified. Mimi took care of that...she just walked up and laid him in his arms. Daddy was ready with the camera!








Now, this...this is Mommy's favorite picture of my perfect little angel. I could hold him and stare at him all day long.
Ethan Brewer
July 10, 2009
6lbs 3 oz
18 inches










Thursday, July 2, 2009

Do dogs have a paper deficiency?

We have been so proud of our high-energy puppy because it seems that she is beginning to calm down a bit...or so we thought. When we first got her we crate-trained her and it has worked beautifully. Here we are a year later and she's doing so well, so of course it is time to allow her some freedom when we leave. We started allowing her to stay out when we left for short periods of time to run to the store and she has worked all the way up to 4 and 5 hours at a time! We are so proud of her...she's such a good girl! She doesn't get on the furniture, she loves laying on her bed, she plays with her toys and doesn't chew things that don't belong to her! She's such a good girl!

Having said all of that, I've been working on Thank You notes and I am so excited because they are almost finished. They stay on "my" chair and every day I sit and write a few. The other day we left for an hour and a half and when we returned, Lucy had EATEN the gift log that I had recorded everything in, several of the Thank You notes, and way too many envelopes to count. I mean shredded, ripped to pieces, digested, strewn all over the floor, and tore pages clean out of the book. You don't want to know how the hormonal pregnant lady who can't remember anything and had almost gotten all of them written reacted.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Summertime Bedrest

You would think that since I am out of school now and my lovely doctor has requested that I stay off of my feet for several boring hours a day that I would be blogging all the time. I do think about it, but it seems that bedrest lends itself to procrastination...not at all what I was thinking it would be like. I was thinking that I would be reading, reading, reading, writing thank you notes, and spending a lot of time on the computer. Not so much, I am actually doing less reading than ever which really isn't good considering that I have several baby books that I am supposed to have FINISHED before our son arrives. We have less than 5 weeks and there are still way too many things on my baby to-do list for my comfort level. That doesn't stress me out at all, yeah sure! And there are a couple of things that STILL need to be done in the nursery before I post the final pics. Does it ever all get done? Or will he arrive first...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Boys and Their Toys




I am a firm believer that every weekend should be a 3 day weekend with a 4 day work week. I think everyone would get on board with me. It was such a relaxing, beautiful weekend (if you missed the rain)! But somehow Monday felt like it should have been the beginning of the weekend...not the day before we turn around and start the week over again. Even so, we spent Sunday after church and Monday on the lake with friends. By Monday afternoon, the boys decided it was time to really get down to business and do some serious water sports with their toys. The perfect solution...a low-key boat for the girls to watch them and get some sun and a high speed water sport boat for the boys. Ben had a blast wake-boarding and I loved cruising around the lake at a much more desirable speed for my pregnant belly!

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Dreaded Maternity Photos











So, we did it. We had maternity pictures made. I had been dreading this for months. Having pictures made of my swollen face, big belly, fat feet, large arms, and thick legs is not my idea of a fun afternoon. Not to mention the scary maternity wrap that shows WAY TOO MUCH skin for my taste. But Ben was excited about the pictures AND the wrap and his perception of me is much better than my perception of myself at this point, so I went along with it. Of course, all of the pictures of him turned out great! His 5 a.m. workout physique looks way different from my 31 weeks pregnant physique. I must admit that some of the pictures did turn out better than I thought they would, though. It was really a very sweet and endearing photo session and tears came to my eyes when I realized that this was the first time that we had had pictures made of us since we got married 8 years ago. Nothing more than snapshots, anyway. In the age of digital everything, we got to preview them before we left and the photographer even put together a little video set to music of some of the pictures that made me cry (gotta love the hormones). All in all, it really wasn't bad. Here are just a few of them...Sorry, I really don't think you want to see the maternity wrap!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Nursery is Painted--Finally!






















After a month of working on weekends, Ben has paint and chair rail up. The nursery is not finished, things are still sitting around, nothing is on the wall yet, and we are waiting on a few pieces to go in his room. But the crib is put together, his bedding is in it, and the dresser in in there. I can't wait to get the letter tiles on the wall above the crib and the blue and lime shadow boxes hung up! Here are a few pictures of the process so far.