This girl.


She's 2. (Side note: Have you EVER seen a better picture? I'm still thinking about it, but I don't think I have. Side note over.)

Her birthday was on the 14th. That morning, we went to Jump Street, an indoor trampoline arena. Maddy loves trampolines. She was basically in heaven.


Then we had lunch at Chick-Fil-A, where she got her very own kids meal (they have a meal with 1 chicken strip. Odd, but perfect. Especially since she likes the fries the most. Which is understandable, since Chick-Fil-A fries are DA best. Okay, I'm done.)

Then she spent the afternoon with Grandma while I got things ready for her party. We just had a low-key party at our house, with pizza and cupcakes. Oh, and presents, of course.



It was a good day. But my favorite part came later.

Charly had fallen asleep in my arms, so I asked Maddy if she wanted to help me put the baby in bed. Of course, she did. We went into the nursery, I put Charly down, and had turned to leave when Maddy said "Chair." She pointed at the rocking chair - the one I used to rock her in every day - and held her arms up to me.

I picked up my baby and sat down to rock her. She wrapped her arms around my neck and rested her cheek on my shoulder. "Twinkle, twinkle," she said. So I tried to hold back my tears while I sang "Twinkle, twinkle" to her, happily starting over every time the song would end and she would demand "Again." I wouldn't have wanted to end that day any other way.


I am so, so lucky to be this girl's mom. She loves popcorn, dancing, Dr. Pepper, and the iPad. She can count to 10 (working on 15), and knows most of her letters. She likes cereal, macaroni and cheese, celery, carrots, pizza, pears, apples, Oreos, cheese, cottage cheese, pepperoni, pickles, Fruit by the Foots, and any kind of candy. She gets mad that I don't let her drive the car. She wants to run everywhere, rather than be carried or ride in her stroller. She can tell you her favorite rides at Disneyland. She likes to watch Dora, The Little Mermaid, Lady and the Tramp, Tangled, and Signing Time. She loves her baby sister, and thinks it's hilarious to make her smile and laugh. She loves Nursery at church, and she'll make sure Dallin and I are folding our arms when it's time to pray. She likes it when her Daddy chases her. When she gives kisses, she kisses both cheeks.


It's entirely possible that I couldn't love her more.

Death by Baby Gap

Ever since I had a little girl, Baby Gap has been trying to kill me.

The other day, I think they may have succeeded. Madelyn and I wandered the mall because Dallin was out doing missionary stuff and because that's what girls do when they have nothing else to do - they shop. Here are just a few of the things we stumbled upon.

This is just a few random things I picked from their website. It's even cuter in person. And there's so much more of it. *Sigh*

Now, just so you don't go thinking I'm a baby clothes snob, I'll have you know that I got Maddy a few shirts from Walmart the other day for $3.50 each. They were adorable too.

But to be honest, we'll probably be going back to Baby Gap before too long...


Oh, you clicked over to my blog hoping to find out what we've been up to for the past few weeks? Maybe get a picture or two of Madelyn in her adorable Halloween costume? Perhaps hear about how school has been going for me (hint: blegh)? Or my feelings about Fall? Or an amazing pumpkin recipe or two?

Well stop dreaming my friends, because I'm not updating you on any of those things right now.

Today we're talking about today.

Today is Madelyn's very first birthday.

Now, I don't want to get too sappy about this. I'm honestly not freaking about too much about having a one-year-old. It is crazy...but come on, I knew it was going to happen someday. In fact, I knew the exact day that it was going to happen, so I could prepare. So don't expect me to be all "AAH MY BABY IS ONE!!!" kind of thing.

But there are a few thoughts I have.

Mostly, I just want to let the cyber-world know that I love love love my baby girl.

I'm so proud of everything she's already accomplished and become in one short year.

I'm grateful to her for making me a mother. It's the most rewarding job I've ever had.

I'm so very excited to find out what the coming years bring for both of us. I hope she grows up to be happy, healthy, loving, brave, smart, confident, and well aware of how much so many people love her.

I'm starting to wonder if the day will ever come when my heart doesn't just expand every time I look at my girl. I don't think it will.

Happy birthday, Madelyn!
Thank you for being my sunshine.

How to open a present with your mouth

Hello, class.

Today we're going to talk about opening presents...with our mouths.

Sometimes, people that really love us, like Grandmas, give us presents for no real reason other than our astounding ability to be the most adorable things on the face of the earth.

When this happens, we get the chance to open those presents. A fun, original way to do this is with your mouth.

Let's try it.

I like to make sure I get sufficient time with the ribbon. Someone went through all the trouble to curl it, so I figure the least I can do is focus on it and ignore the rest of the present for a good 5 minutes or so.

Once Mama decides she's taken enough pictures of you playing with the ribbon, she'll take it away. Bummer.

But don't let it deter you for too long. Go for the present next!

You might find you have some trouble actually getting the paper off this way. Don't worry, Mama will always help you.

So, there you have it. I guess Mom really ends up doing all the work. But before Mom figures out that you can't actually effectively open a present with your mouth, make sure you get as much time as possible gumming your present. She'll think it's cute, anyway.

Come back next time to learn how to perfectly time your need to pee so it happens right when Mama takes the diaper off. Now that's a hoot. No pictures, though.


Milk and Cereal

We added a new component to Maddy girl's diet a few days ago: rice cereal! Woot!

While it's kind of weird for me to even call it cereal since it's recommended to mix a lot of breastmilk into it for the first few I feel like I'm just spoon feeding her milk...I think she definitely notices something different.

Rice cereal is also a great fashion accessory. are some more cute pictures, because they're adorable.

As soon as I get the good Easter pictures from my mom, you'll get to look at those too.

Consider yourself lucky. I know I do!

Maddy Meets Disney

Madelyn's first trip to Disneyland was the start of a beautiful relationship, I'm sure.

In case you live under a rock, I love Disneyland. Mucho. It is just a place of happiness. Happy happiness. Which is the best kind of happiness. Call me silly or childish or trite or whatever, but Disneyland totally rocks in my book.

So, without further ado, here is a bum-load of pictures from our Disneyland trip. Try to not completely eat your heart out because of all the cuteness that is my child.

First time in the park. She was sleeping but we had to get a picture of the momentous-ness (duh):

Waiting in line for her first ride: Pirates!

In line for the Haunted Mansion, aka the Nap Ride:

One of the smartest things about Disneyland: they have stationary ride cars for picture taking. Genius.

Uncle Kyle had to try on the sunglasses of stylish-ness:

Mom/Grandma got chosen to participate in the show. She made a great bank teller

See? Stationary teacups too. We didn't actually go on the teacups with Maddy...I didn't want to take any chances.

Seahorse even got to come to Disneyland!

The closest she got to Soarin Over California:

I love her face in this one with my little sis:

I got a sweet baby carrier that she liked to be carried in. She fell asleep more than once in that thing.

Her face in this one says to me: "Holy crap I've got to get off this thing!"

I love this one. It's on the Casey Jr. train

In front of the castle! Classic D-Land pic.

Going on her favorite ride - It's a Small World - with Grandma and cousin Carson. She could just stare at everything going on in that ride aaaaallll day.

She really, really wanted that popcorn.

Last but not least - she really likes when we make "Donald Duck noises" at her, so we had to get a picture with him! He couldn't talk though, so bummer.

So, in closing, I'd like to thank Dallin, my mom and siblings, Walt Disney, spring break, and the universe for making this trip (a) possible and (b) totally awesome.

Maddy is already begging to go back.


Madelyn is growing up.

Evidence: I had to buy her new jammies.


Good thing I totally love the jammies. That makes it a little easier to deal with.

I just think they're so cute!

Or maybe it's the baby. Even though she's been sick (cough, stuffy/runny nose, etc) she's still pretty much the cutest being in the land.

And speaking case you didn't notice, I put a linky up in the top right corner to a contest I entered Maddy in. I know...embarrassing, right? But I figured since it was just a local, no big deal contest, done by a photographer whose maternity/newborn pictures I totally swooned over when I was pregnant, it might be justifiable. Just this once. She'd really just win some clothes and a couple pictures taken by the photographer. But hey, Mama would love it.

So, click here and vote for #8, if you haven't already. One vote per IP address. Oh, and if you're computer savvy and know some weird way to disguise your IP address or something, don't cheat. The lady running the contest sent us an e-mail this morning saying that they've caught people cheating. On the baby contest! I was totally shocked. I mean, seriously - do you really care that much?! I guess some Mamas do.

A Blessing

Madelyn IS a blessing.

Madelyn also RECEIVED a blessing.

A very special blessing from two very loving fathers - one on Earth and one in Heaven.

Madelyn's blessing day was February 7th.

Dallin gave the single most beautiful blessing I have ever heard. I wish I was just saying that, because then I would feel like I wasn't bragging. But I'm not just saying that, so I am kind of bragging, which is terrible, but whatever.

Some of the notable things I remember from the blessing: that Madelyn will have a sense of humor, that she will have patience with her imperfect parents (YES.) and that she will be her mother's best friend, because her mother loves her very much (ALSO YES.).

I know that God has blessed us by allowing us to have access to His power through the holy priesthood. It's hard for me to even say how grateful I am that Dallin is a worthy priesthood holder who is able to lead and preside over our home with the very power of God. That power is real. I believe that with all my might, and this sweet blessing reaffirmed it with every word.

We were so so glad that so many of our friends and family came to share this special occasion with us. Happiness IS the love and support of those you love and support!

Here are some pictures my mom snapped of the big day:

Madelyn and Great Grandma (who might not have been ready
for the picture...but looks great anyway!):

Good shot of her dress (which is the dress my mom was blessed in...let's hope Madelyn catches whatever my mom caught so she can be just like her G!):

The whole gang:

Daddy, Mommy, and Baby:

Same day, different outfit, too cute to not post:

Blessed baby. Blessed parents. Life is good.

I'll Like You For Always

It's mornings like this morning (when I was pooped on in the first 5 minutes of holding Maddy girl)

following nights like last night (during which I got up just about every 2 hours exactly)

that make me think I could very easily be mad at my little girl.

And then I go to change her, and I get:

and I'm like, "Mad? What's mad?"

"Wait, who's mad?"

"I'm not mad!"

"Um...what was the question?"

I guess anger and chubby cheeks just don't mix.

Shots and Stats

So Madelyn had her two month checkup last week.

I wasn't going to post about it because I thought the snooze factor was a bit high.

Then I realized that my last post was about the weather...which, although fascinating, probably still has a higher snooze factor than anything I could write concerning my baby girl.

I hope my blog doesn't start to ooze of snooze.

Of course, if I'm using phrases like "ooze of snooze," then there's no way it's gonna.

Moving on.

Maddy girl had to get immunizations at this appointment. One was this drink type thing that she just gobbled up because it was liquid in her mouth and that's what she does (she's such a glutton). The other two? Needles.

In all honesty, I was expecting it to be much worse than it really was. I guess that's usually the case with shots. But I stood behind her and held her hands, trying not to tear up myself, and choosing to look away when the actual stickage occurred.

Poor baby.

But I think she handled it like a champ. A few minutes calmed her right down, and she was great at taking the Tylenol the doc suggested we give her (I'm telling you...liquid in the mouth=serious gobbling).

Here she is with her band-aids (and no, I'm not actually sure if they are Band-Aid brand, since it is a brand and not a product [fun fact]...but as far as I'm concerned...they're band-aids. On to the picture):

See them there on her lil legs?

Breaks my heart.

In other news, we got some stats on how much our baby is like every other baby in the world.

Weight: 11 lb 6 oz (50th percentile)
Height: 23 1/4 in (75th percentile)
Head: 16 cm (90th percentile)

So, other than her huge melon of a noggin, she's pretty average.

Too bad there's no scale for cuteness. 100th percentile, I'd say...if I had to guess.

Oh, bring back my body to me

Not exactly how the song goes...but work with me here.

My body has not been my own for almost a year now. Yes, February was the month in which Madelyn was conceived, and my self has been shared ever since.

You might be thinking, "But Katie, did you not expel your child from your self in November, thus restoring your body to your sole ownership?"

If you are thinking this, two things are very likely true:

1) You speak very formally...good for you.
2) You have never breastfed.

What has my breastfeeding experience been like? In a word...annoying.

In four words...I'm a freakin cow.

I make more milk than Madelyn could ever drink. Which, by the way, is saying girl can eat.

I would never REALLY complain about breastfeeding. I mean, it's the best possible food for my baby. Not only that, but it's got to be at least part of the reason all my pregnancy weight ran away screaming and crying after the baby was born. I eat more and weigh less than I think I ever have in my adult life. And I know I should be grateful that I have enough milk, that Madelyn and I didn't have problems "getting used" to the whole thing, etc.

But seriously. I can pretty much count on having to change clothes at least once a day, and usually more than that. I'm debating just giving up clothes all together. Madelyn ends up having to change clothes pretty often too. And my sheets? Forgetaboutit.

Aside from my laundry issues, some funness has happened that requires me to use this cream stuff to keep me from wanting to part ways with my chest forever. Said cream is very annoying to apply.

Like I said, I should probably count myself lucky. I know other mothers have bigger issues than I do when it comes to breastfeeding. And I intend to keep it up...but not without some complaining. I'll try to spare you another post about it enthralled as I'm sure you all are.

In other news...

Dallin is amazing.

Madelyn is beautiful.

Life is good.

Oh! And we're blessing Madelyn on February 7. It's going to be epic. Our ward meets at 11:30. Consider this your invitation. If you want to come, e-mail me or comment or something and I'll get you directions to our building.

Ciao ciao.

How to Get Nothing Done

Step 1: Feed the baby

Step 2: Hold the baby until she falls asleep

Step 3: Set the baby down

Step 4: Spend the 5 minutes you have running around like crazy - rotate the laundry, clean at random, and if you're really

Step 5: Go pick up the fussing baby.

Step 6: Lather.

Step 7: Rinse.

Step 8: Ignore steps 6 & 7 since they actually have nothing to do with anything.

Step 9: Repeat.

My baby loves to be held.

She will smile and coo. She will just lay still and look at me. She will sleep for hours on end (like really). She will do all these long as I'm holding her.

If I'm not holding her, I usually have very few minutes to get x project/task done.

The exception is if she's swaddled and completely, totally, 100% asleep. I save this special combo for nighttime.

Moral of the story: If you want to get things done, don't have kids.

Um...ok, sadness. Scratch that.

New moral of the story since the last one sucked: Put off what you think you need to get done and hold your kids whenever they'll let you. Especially while they're little babies. And especially if you happen to have the cutest daughter in the world...which you don't, because I do.

Ok, so I'm probably exaggerating (not about the cutest daughter in the world thing...ha!). Madelyn doesn't need to be held 24/7. She'll chill on our bed while I get ready in the morning. She'll hang out on a blanket on the floor at Grandma's. She'll sit/sleep in her glider type thing so Daddy can watch her while he works. She'll stay nice and content in her car seat for long periods of time while we're out running errands.

So I guess maybe the point is that I freak out too much about getting laundry/cleaning/grocery shopping done. Psh, don't we all?

Also, on a narrative note, we had a fantastic holiday week, and hope you did too! We spent Christmas Eve at my parents' house; it consisted of Dallin doing the Christmas Can-Can and yours truly being Santa Claus in the annual Christmas play. We spent most of Christmas day there as well, opening presents (wait till I tell you what Dallin gave made me go "Aww" and possibly cry), eating a yummy breakfast, and relaxing, before going home to pack for our trip. We flew up to Seattle on Christmas night to spend a week with Dallin's family. New Year's Eve was spent mostly at their house...until 11:00 when I decided I didn't want to be old and boring yet and made Dallin take me somewhere. We ended up watching the Space Needle fireworks from a groovy spot across the Puget Sound. Smooching may have been involved.

And now, on with a new week, a new month, and a new year!

Here's something to get you through your Madelyn fix:

Her cheeks are totally chubifying. You can practically pinch them through your computer screen. But I wouldn't recommend trying. Unless you're totally alone. Double check, and then go ahead and try.

Flying with a Newborn

So. I had to take my baby on a plane.

On the evening of Christmas Day, we took off to travel to Seattle to visit Dallin's family for a week.

I basically had a nervous breakdown.

No, seriously, I was in tears as the plane took off.

I have no idea why...except that I had never been so incredibly worried about anything in my entire life.

Worried about what, you might ask? Oh, you know...whether or not we'd have to check the car seat; getting past security with all our extra stuff (including bottles); having to hold the baby the entire time; the baby crying for the whole trip; the pressure change bugging her so that she cried louder/harder; having to feed her; having to change her; having her spit up or blow out or emit some other kind of liquid that had to be cleaned up immediately; the fact that the plane might know.

Well, you know what happened?

Madelyn slept. THE ENTIRE TIME.

When we checked in and were told there would be extra seats so we could take her car seat right on the plane, she was asleep.

When we got to security, she was asleep.

(Until we had to take her out of her seat AND take her little boots off so they could be sure we weren't smuggling a dangerous something in our baby's baby sized boots. Sheesh. But she went back to sleep.)

During the extra 40 minutes we had to wait because our flight was delayed, she was asleep.

As we got on the plane and settled into our seats, she was asleep.

As they explained that adults traveling with children should, in the case of an unexpected pressure change, put their own oxygen masks on first before securing the child's, which I completely ignored as I realized if that happened I would not be able to breathe at all and so would be just as well off giving my mask to Madelyn anyway...she was asleep.

As I was in tears during take-off, and as everyone's ears popped, she was asleep.

And when we landed in Seattle 3 hours later, she was still asleep.

It was hard to believe. And it's harder to believe that it will happen again when we fly home.

I guess we'll find out. Cross your fingers for me, please.

No, seriously...cross them.


So, I'm a mommy.

Yeah, it's kind of weird.

It's like, I had this alien creature in my stomach for nine months. It was something I couldn't really identify with or really picture. And then I birthed it and it was like...a human. It's daughter.

It's really pretty mind boggling if you think about it. And if you don't think about it, it's really a very normal thing that happens hundreds of times every day. Maybe I should stop thinking about it.

Anyway, motherhood.

Motherhood is hard to explain for me at this point. Probably because I've only been experiencing it for three weeks, which is not a very long time to become an expert or even really a well-rehearsed novice at anything.

I would say that my feelings of mommy-ness could be placed into a nutshell at this point: a nutshell named "Worry."

I worry. A lot. It sucks. I try really, really hard not to. I don't freak out when the bink (aka pacifier. I dislike the word pacifier) falls on the floor. I don't wash every piece of clothing before she wears it for the first time. I'll pretty much let anyone hold her or touch her. I've even taken her out shopping and exposed her to germ infested society.

But a cough, or a comment that she still looks a little yellow, or a little bit of spit-up coming out of her nose, or a particularly violent startle, or her being "too still" while she's sleeping, or falling asleep while I was holding her and waking up to see that she slipped out of her original position, or her eye getting a little goopy, or her not wanting to eat for a little longer than usual, or her nails getting a little too long, or wondering if I'm dressing her too warmly, or thinking the cradle mattress might be too soft, or just thinking about the possibility that something might show up on her newborn screening, or even just thinking that she might get a cold or something...

and I just...don't like it.

I mean, this is my baby. It's my baby! Nothing is allowed to happen to her - ever! You hear that, universe?

I am seriously trying to not become a total basket case by worrying about my daughter too much. But wow, it's hard.

Thankfully, this worry has tapered off since the first week or so. I can pretty much go about my daily business without being constantly sure paranoid worried that Madelyn is surely going to suffer some kind of terrible suffering.

But I still can't exactly sleep in the same room as her. She stirs, I stir.

I just love her, you know? This is my daughter. Of course I don't want anything to happen to her. I want her to be happy and healthy and smart and beautiful and I don't want anything in the world to even think about getting in her way.

I know that things are going to happen. She might even (gasp!) get a cold someday. And I'm going to have to deal with it.

And maybe then, after a few years or so of colds, I'll be a little more qualified to write about Mommy-ness.

You know...maybe.

On a fairly to moderately more awesome note, here are some of our Madelyn's adorable personality traits that we've noticed in her first twenty-five days of life:

-She loves to be held, and will refuse to sleep anywhere but someone's arms unless she's out like bell bottoms.

-She loves to hold hands. Sometimes holding her hand(s) calms her down like nothing else.

-She likes to have her hands up by her face. Short nails are completely necessary. She won't wear baby mittens.

-She does not like baths.

-She likes being rocked and read to, and while you might think Dickens' A Christmas Carol is a bit advanced for someone at her level, I can assure you, she loves it.

-She has a very strong neck/head. When I'm sitting up and holding her with her head on my chest, she'll lift her head up and stare at me in the face for a good amount of time.

-When she's awake, she's very alert. Just taking in the world around her, I guess!

And on the most awesome note of all, here is a recent picture of our little princess (not that all pictures of her aren't recent...I mean, she's 3 1/2 weeks old...):

Ok so it's not the most flattering angle, I know. But the fact that she's still the cutest baby in the land, even at the unflattering angle, has got to say something.

Oh yeah, I'm a mom.

OH BOT: The Saga Ends

I go to the doctor every week now.

We are friends.

At least, we are USUALLY friends.

But when I go in on Thursday and Doctor tells me he wants me to have an ultrasound at the HOSPITAL on Friday because he thinks my baby and I are just too dang small, well, our friendship suffers.

And then when the hospital can't get us in until Monday for whatever silly scheduling reason, my friendship with the hospital suffers too.

I'm just losing friends, here.

I worried all weekend. Of course I did. Wouldn't you be worried if the doctor decided you needed yet another ultrasound? Even though you've already had an extra one because you were too small? And even though that extra one went just fine? And even though the doctor said that, more likely than not, it's just a small baby?

Well, I was worried.

So we went to the hospital today to have our ultrasound done by a fancy-schmancy hospital ultrasound technician.

Want to know what she found out?

1) My baby, once and for all, is NOT too small. Baby weighs about 7 pounds 2 ounces as of today. All the measurements maybe set me back about 4 days or so, but that's negligible.

2) Baby is sitting low and coming high. Head is way way down in my pelvis and bum is way up in my ribs.

3) Baby is a girl.

Yeah, read it again. I had to.

Baby is a GIRL.

Not a boy.


No boy.


Boy? No. Girl? Yes.

It's a girl.

Ultrasound lady was sure. At least, sure enough to bet her next paycheck on it. It was like, not even a question in her mind.

This has created the need for some serious mind rewiring in the past couple hours.

Not that we're not thrilled - my baby is healthy! - but it's just...not what was expected!

It is quite a difficult concept to grasp.

Girl. Girl. Girl girl girl.

Girl is a weird word.


I have some clothes to exchange.

Thankfully, the nursery will work either way. P.S. I got bedding for the nursery (finally) and am totally and completely in love with it. The decor is proceeding quite nicely. I will have to show you pictures someday.

For today, my mind is shifting from blue to pink. Right now we're kind of in a weird purple-y stage.

So hopefully my OH BOT saga is over. I mean, this baby had better be a girl now. If a boy pops out, well, I might just have some kind of mental explosion.

Which would be unfortunate.

5 days until the due date! Any guesses as to when our little princess will arrive?