Monday, May 28, 2007

A Case Of The Sniffles

Olivia has her first official least I think so. It really is just a minor case of the sniffles. I had a horrible head cold a few weeks ago and I think she picked a little of it up from me. For the past few days she has been very congested. She has also been sneezing quite a bit and rubbing her eyes. But if it weren't for those symptoms I would not have known that she was sick. She has not been acting as if she feels under the weather. We have been very lucky with her so far. This is the only sickness we have had to deal with since she was born! I knew that something was bothering her when she kept making this face...

I kept wondering..."what is she doing?" I quickly figured out that this was the face she made to try and get the snot out that was building up in her nose! Too funny! So other than having to continuously suction all of the crap out of her nose (which she hates!) she has been handling her first cold like a champ! Which is good because we have had a pretty busy Memorial Day weekend. But we did manage to find a little time to relax. Here is Livie and her daddy resting in bed...

My Grandma and Uncle came into town for a few days for the holiday weekend. We were busy with cookouts and socializing. My Grandma just loves spending time with Olivia. She lives in Michigan so they get to visit somewhat regularly. Since Olivia was born just one week after my Grandfather passed away, she has been a great distraction for my Grandma. She is also quite a handful for her. With Olivia weighing over 19 lbs. it is quite hard for my Grandma to hold onto her. But I did manage to catch a nice moment with Olivia and her Great Nana Cleo...

We finished off our holiday weekend with our annual cookout at Papa Graham's house. It was a beautiful, warm day and Olivia wore one of her pretty new dresses from her Grandma in Hawaii. Here is a picture of Olivia with her Nana...lookin' cute!

We do not have much to report right now. Livie is just about to turn 7 months old...where has the time gone? She still is not showing much interest in crawling but she sure loves to play with her toys. Her favorites are those that she can bang on and make noise. Those are also the ones that drive her Mommy and Daddy crazy after awhile! I am not worried about her crawling, as I know she will do it when she is good and ready. That is how she has done everything else up to this point. She is talking more than ever now. She has been adding lots of new sounds to her vocabulary lately. She has mastered "da da" and "na na" but no "ma ma" yet. I am patiently waiting for that day!

We have lots of fun and exciting things coming up this summer. Olivia will be taking her first plane ride next month. We will be swimming for the first time very soon. And Olivia's Grandpa (Todd's Dad) is coming back again, from Hawaii, for a nice long visit. So much to look forward to!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Pearly Whites

Yep...she's got 'em! Two of them in fact. Miss Olivia is sporting two cute little teeth on the bottom. Best part about it is that we did not even know she was teething! We knew something was going to happen soon as this child has been drooling non-stop for the past three months. But it wasn't until my Aunt Sue, who was in town for Olivia's baptism a few weeks ago, just happen to discover a tooth while Olivia was chewing on her fingers. We were shocked! But with a feel of my own I could tell that one was popping through. Within a few weeks she had two of them break the surface! So the good news is that she did not fuss while she was pushing those teeth through. We can only hope the rest of them come through with the same amount of ease!

Olivia is about 6 1/2 months old and she has a lot of exciting things happening right now. She is officially sitting up on her own. She no longer needs any help what-so-ever! It is so great! She can sit and play for the longest time. I have never seen a child so fascinated with her toys! She loves anything that she can bang on and make noise. We set her up with a little play area and she is good to go. Here she is with her stash of toys...
She is also completely into solids. We have tried just about every veggie and fruit and there is nothing that she doesn't like...obviously! She has also been having a few bites of our table food, when it is something she can handle. She is still limited to mashed foods, but she enjoys trying new things. We have been giving her a few finger foods also. They seem to help with her hand-eye coordination. I think her little tummy is still trying to adjust to the change in her diet, but that is to be expected. And I am only having to nurse her four times a day. A few weeks ago she weighed 19 lbs. and 5 oz. Her weight gain has definitely slowed...which is good!

She is also doing much better at the babysitters. I think she is finally starting to enjoy herself over there. The little children entertain her and now that she is more independent she can occupy herself with no problem. That was a rough road, but I am glad things are looking up!

This past week my Cousin Ryan came to visit for a few days before heading to his internship in Pittsburgh. Olivia seemed to enjoy him, as he would just look at her and make funny sounds and faces. That is all it takes for her to be entranced with someone! I am glad she got the chance to spend some time with her Cousin Ry Ry as she doesn't get to see him very often.

Olivia is just a very happy baby. She smiles constantly! She brings so much joy to our lives. If either Todd or myself are having a bad day, all we need to do is look at her and everything is OK. That smile is just contagious...and I love it! Hope this smile brightens your day, like it does ours...

Saturday, May 12, 2007

A Mother's Love

This is a special day for me! It's special because this year I get to celebrate being a Mom. I guess last year at this time I was technically considered a Mom, even though our baby hadn't arrived yet. I received a gift from Todd and some nice cards...but this year it really counts! This year I received a beautiful tennis bracelet from Todd as well as a pencil sketch drawing of myself with Olivia. They were both very thoughtful and meaningful gifts! But obviously the best gift of all is my little Livie!

To celebrate Mother's Day we decided to do some fun things as a family. We included my Mom, as we had some special things planned for her on this special day as well. All of us went to the zoo! Olivia loves the zoo and since we have a season pass we can go as often as we like. It was the perfect day to be at the zoo and we all had a very nice time. This evening we went to a friend's for dinner. Olivia had a wonderful time as there was a little girl there to help entertain her. Overall it was a wonderful 1st Mother's Day!

I always knew that I would enjoy being a Mom. What I did not know is how it would change me. My love for this little person is overwhelming at times! I look at her and cannot believe that she is mine. I did not know that I had this much love to give. It is truly an amazing feeling. Even more, I can finally relate to my mother and all that she went through to raise me. I understand that it is hard work...that sometimes it is extremely frustrating. I understand that I must sacrifice some things that I want, in order to do what is best for her. It has made me realize what is really important in life. I have realized that things that used to take priority, really aren't all that important anymore. But I also understand that being a Mom is probably the most rewarding thing I will ever do in my life. One day I will look at Olivia and be proud of the child that I helped to raise. I don't think there is a better reward in life than that!

But at the same time, today is a day to be thankful to my Mom. It is because of her that I am the person I am today. I owe her so much and I am so grateful for all that she has done for me. I can only hope that one day, when Olivia is all grown, that she will feel the same way about me.

Because I now know what it takes to be a Mom I can finally give the proper recognition to all of the other Moms out there. You are all amazing and should be so proud of yourselves! I hope your day was as special as mine was. There is no other love, like a Mother's love, and that deserves to be celebrated!

Friday, May 04, 2007

So Blessed!

Our sweet baby girl was baptized this past Sunday. It was the perfect day. The sun was shining, the weather was warm and we were surrounded by so many loving friends and family. We could not have asked for more.

The festivities started the Wednesday prior when my Aunt Sue flew in from California to be a part of this special occasion and to spend some time with her Great Niece. And that she did. They were able to spend quite a bit of quality time together over the course of the weekend. Sue was worried that Livie would not like her, as she can be picky about "her people". But that was not an issue at all. Olivia immediately took to her Aunt Sue Sue and they hit it off. For some reason Livie was fascinated with Sue's nose so she spent lots of time trying to grab it off of her face...

My Grandmother and Uncle also came into town from Michigan to spend time with Olivia. It was a fun filled weekend that concluded on Sunday with the baptism. Livie's Nana (my Mom) bought her the beautiful white dress for the special occasion. I had no idea how pretty she would look in it. I know I am biased since I am her mother, but she took my breath away!

She did very well during the church service, not making a single sound until the water was poured on her head. At that point she made her presence known. But it was also time for her morning nap, so crankiness was setting in. But she was a trooper and made it through with flying colors! It was such a special moment! And we are so lucky to have such wonderful Godparents for our little Olivia. Our close friends Korrie and Tom have agreed to take on this important role and we are so grateful to them!

Following the service we headed back to my mother's house for a celebration luncheon. Both my Aunt and my Mom worked very hard on all of the preparations and it was amazing! The food was wonderful and I think our guests really enjoyed themselves. Because Livie was so exhausted from her busy morning she took a nice long nap while the grown-ups ate and socialized. It was perfect timing.

After waking up from a long nap those who were not at the baptism were anxious to see Olivia in her pretty dress. Since it was such a beautiful day we went outdoors to take some pictures in the sunshine. With everyone watching she switched into diva mode and starting smiling for the camera.

The Proud Parents
Four Generations of Sculley Women
Olivia and Three of Her Cousins
A Blessing From God!
I knew that Olivia's baptism was going to be a special occasion for us. But we could not have imagined just how special. It gave me the opportunity to reflect on just how blessed Todd and I are to have this beautiful baby in our lives. It also allowed me to see how lucky we are to be surrounded by so many loving friends and family. Thank you for all of the wonderful gifts that were given to Olivia for her baptism and thank you to everyone who helped to make this day something we will remember always. God bless you baby girl!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

My Michelin Baby

Our baby girl was 6 lbs. 10 oz. when she was born almost 6 months ago. Since that day she has put on the weight like it is going out of style! In the beginning she was gaining around a pound week! Obviously she has slowed down since then, but at just shy of 6 months old she weighs just under 19 lbs!!!

I have no idea why I have such a chubby baby. Don't get me wrong...I love her chubbiness. I am just baffled as to why she has gotten so big so fast! She is not a big eater. She does like her food but she has never been a baby who eats more than normal. But now that we are starting to get more into solid foods I want to be sure that I do not overly contribute to her already growing waistline! I have friends who have had chubby babies and they said that as soon as their babies starting moving more they thinned out. I have no doubt this will happen to Livie as she is an extremely active baby that moves from the moment she gets up in the morning to the second she lays her head down at night.

I was a chubby baby, as was my mother. I guess it just runs in the family. We are really enjoying her rolls and we just love squeezing her. It just cracks me up when I see her next to other babies her age. She could take most of them any day of the week! With all of this talk of Olivia's chubbiness in recent weeks my Aunt decided to take action and created this...

You must admit...that is pretty funny! What is even funnier is that when I googled "Michelin Man" recently I kept seeing a picture pop up over and over. It was a picture of a baby that was diagnosed with Micheline Baby Syndrome! Yes, it is a real thing. I guess it is an extremely rare syndrome where young babies have numerous, symmetrical rolls in their skin. See for yourself...

So Olivia isn't quite that big...but she is a big girl, and we love it!

As I mentioned, she will be turning six months old this Friday! I have no idea where those first six months went. She has gone from this little tiny baby who did nothing to a big girl with tons of personality. She is sitting up, eating a ton of different solid foods and pretty much sleeping through the night. I really could not ask for more. We are still having some trouble at the babysitter's though. She cries most of the time when she is there. Not sure why exactly. There are other kids there who try to entertain her but as soon as I leave the crying starts and most of the time it is virtually impossible to calm her down. I thought she would have gotten past this by now. It stopped for about a month but has recently picked back up. It is frustrating since she hardly ever cries for us. It also makes it difficult for the babysitter as she has other children to tend to. So hopefully we get over this soon.

And finally, Olivia was baptized this past weekend. It was a joyous occasion. I am waiting for some family members to send me pictures. As soon as I get them I will post them. She was quite a vision in her gorgeous white gown!