Fourth of July 2017

For Independence Day this year we had several options of activities, festivals, and fireworks shows to attend. We had to sift through the possibilities to find what worked best for our one-month-old for a shorter outing.

We decided on Tumwater’s Artisanal Family Festival and Thunder Valley Fireworks show held at the golf course. With such an impressive title and yearly turn out of 10,000 people or more, we were expecting local vendor booths, many food booths and truck options, live music, and a great fireworks show.

Two hours after the festival started we paid our $10 to park. Loading up the stroller for the first time, we trekked our way to the driving range. When we got passed security, we saw family after family already set up with blankets, chairs, coolers, even tents ready for the fireworks show in two hours.

Hungry, we decided first to scope out the food options. We were surprised to only six food vendors on the left hand side of the stage, all of which had massive lines. Thinking we were going to stroll through aisles of booths, in reality there were only two local product vendors: one for Rainer cherries, the other for jerky.

We go a sampling of BBQ and Asian and set to find a place on the grass. Once settled, we look around a little more, on the opposite end of the stage were rows of inflatables and a children’s stage. We listened to a DJ mix dance-able songs, but were disappointed to never hear any local music.

A little later four skydivers dropped from a plane to a designated painted spot in the grass. Upon landing they randomly picked up raffle information cards placed on the field by children who entered to win prizes. The last diver displayed an American flag. It was definitely a highlight of the night.

Soon after it started to get dark and the count down to the fireworks show began with a lot of hype. We decided based on the crowd, and how Zach was doing, to leave during the show and finish watching from the car. The display was introduced by the national anthem and a short speech from the mayor. But the show lasted less than twenty minutes and was not extremely impressive.

Overall it was still worth while. This event was very family friendly, also, if you did not park in the main lot, was free of cost, so for many people it was worth the crowd.

We got a chance to try something new and see how Zach would do with a longer outing. He enjoyed people watching and listening to the music and didn’t get upset until he got understandably tired and hungry.We will probably go to a different event next year, but I think Zach had a pretty good first 4th of July.

What did you do for the holiday?

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Zachary: 1 Month

It’s hard to believe that Zachary is now a month old. It’s been the shortest and longest month of our lives.

We as a family have learned so much about each other. Zach has become more vocal and we have learned what each of those sounds mean, even the different types of cries.

Zach loves to kick and wiggle, so swaddles never worked out and we went straight to footed jammies, even if they are a little big on him.

He learned to self sooth right away sticking his whole fist and occasionally thumb in his mouth. By week three, we introduced a pacifier. Mom, Dad, and Zach love having a binki.

Zach can turn his head from one side to the other and can turn from his back to his side-yes he’s a little strong one. He has also learned to grasp and hold on tight to my hair, clothes, and is working on ways to keep his binki in his mouth.

He loves listening to music, especially if Mom or Dad sings, and dancing around in their arms. He also enjoys time on the blanket under the gym his Papa made him looking at black and white pictures and or staring outside.

I want to thank everyone who prayed for us during our time at hospital and for recovery since then. Both Zach and I are healing very well and grateful for all of your thoughts and prayers.

 

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Happy Father’s Day! 2017

Last week I said I would be honoring three men in my life this year for father’s day; more on the first two see: honoring father’s day

As for the third? Last but of course not least I have to honor the newest father in the family, my husband Luke.

Leading up to Zach’s birth Luke worked tirelessly at a seemingly never ending list to get us established and settled in a new home, state, and job. From the second he found out were were pregnant he fixated on selling the house in Wayland, setting up new insurances and bank accounts, looking for/buying us a home, getting us a safer/newer car and so many other details while also trying to establish himself in a new job. Luke sacrificed many weeknight hours and almost every weekend leading up to May getting us settled. This  includes also attending a twelve week birth class on the weekends with me and being attentive as we prepared for parenthood.

Adding to all of this, he was wonderful husband and coach through a difficult, and exhausting labor process. He was extremely encouraging, helping me through long hours waiting for Zach in spite of his own exhaustion, and hunger. Luke almost never left my side and only did so to update family. Near the end,  he provided the reassurance and wisdom I needed for us change our birth plan and bring Zach safely into the world.

Now that he has a few week’s experience as a father, I can say he has also been great as a parent. He was super involved in Zach’s care as well as mine after we got home from the hospital. Even now that he he is back at work he checks in with me during the day to see how everything is going. On the weekends he’s very attentive and helps with all aspects of Zach’s care and love to play with him. He has already established a strong relationship with Zach and can tell what he needs or wants sometimes better than me. On the very overwhelming days, Luke has been taking Zach and Kira on a walk in the evenings so I can get peace and quiet while I finished up projects around the house, shower, or take a nap.

I never questioned or doubted Luke would be an awesome father. But I admire him even more as a husband through this whole process. He has been here for me in ways I never expected or anticipated he would need to, and he has taken it all without complaint.

I am honored to watch the way he interacts with Zachary as they build up a relationship together. I can see how much love he has for his son as well as joy and hope as he looks to the lifetime of adventures they will have together.

Happy First Father’s Day Luke!

Honoring Father’s Day 2017

Even though all of my attention right now is being taken up by one particular little man, this year I want to honor three other very special men in my life.

First is my father. Although he lives in Southern California, he still managed to find time leading up to Zach’s birth to take the family crib and cradle out of storage, fix and clean them up, then bring them to us all during his work vacations. He helped Luke prep and paint the nursery among other house projects when we first moved in. My dad also decided to buy us a dresser for the nursery which he then built a beautiful oak wood changing table for. My father also spent all night alongside my mother praying and walking the halls of the hospital waiting for news about how Zach and I were doing. After Zach’s birth he helped with projects around the house, that is when he wasn’t holding or making faces at his new grandson. He is a amazing father who is  nurturing and kind and I am grateful for all his actions which speak so much louder than words.

Next is my father-in-law. With his business experience in construction, John did the inspection for our home for the minimal cost of a good home cooked meal, favorite dessert, and a beer or two. He has been consulting with Luke providing advice for work to be done in and around the house now and down the road. He fixed up and painted the family rocking chair to use in the nursery and helped pick up and deliver furniture to us several times. In addition to all of this, he also built us a baby gym for Zach. Using online designs as a guide, he made an improved all-wood and strings model that can be thrown in a bag. He also helped with a ton of house projects after Zach was born. He even helped us introduce Kira to our newest member of the family when we got home from the hospital. I am grateful to get to know this second-father better now that we live closer and for his hard-working  attitude of “what’s next?”

As for the third? Wait for my next post.

 

 

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Rest

We have a week before Baby Greene’s due date.

Everything on our long list is done. Our hospital bags are backed, car seat installed, meals prepped, nursery functional and stocked, birth class over.

Luke and I worked hard to have this time, to be present and find rest.

So now we are in a time of waiting. Neither one of us are good at being patient. It is difficult to intentionally slow down, stay in the moment, sleep in, simply be with and enjoy each other’s company. Yet that is exactly what we need.

If you have been following my blog, this past year has been a crazy roller coaster.  The transition preparing for a first child stressful. We added a move across the country, new job, selling a house, finding and moving into the new home and buying another car, to that list. And that of course is the short version.

Luke and I both have been running on a high speed since last July when the job hunting started. Then the speed picked up even more by October when we realized I was pregnant. When you have been running that hard and fast for so long-it feels counter intuitive to put up your feet for awhile.

But that is what we are going to do: rest. It’s long overdue. So if you do not see blog posts for awhile know that is because we are taking a break, focusing on each other, and joyfully waiting for Baby Greene to arrive.

Happy Mother’s Day 2017

It’s hard to believe that in a little more than a week I could myself take on the role and title of “mother”. I know it’s comes with a lifetime of work and joy and I am so honored to be chosen for this beautiful responsibility.

I want to say thank you to all of my friends and family who are mothers. No matter how long you have been a parent, you have all provided me with guidance, advice, and set wonderful examples for me as I prepare to join you soon.

To all of of you Happy Mother’s Day!