To My Ruby

Letter To My Baby…

I’m tired and she’s tired. And she’s been weeping with frustration, her face a smudge of red cheeks and snotty trails.

I reach for her and she swats at me and doesn’t want the comfort I know she wants.

I gently take her hands and pull her up. Her tender self all frustration and sweat melting into me. I cup her with my arms and my words and slowly stroke those damp curls back from her cheeks.

I’ve got deadlines and to-do lists and no clue what to make for dinner. There is one quiet window before Don comes home and had hoped for a ten minute nap. But she’s inconsolable for reasons she can’t put into 18 month old words yet and I’m on my knees reaching for her.

I will always be there, baby.

She’s in my arms and slowly beginning to stroke my shirt like it’s her blanket. Her curls are warm and sweaty and that pudgy baby cheek fits just under my chin.

I will always be there.

I dance with her slowly – the rock and roll of motherhood – and I know this is a promise I can stake my life on.

I will always be there.

When you forget your lunch. When you are sheep number 5 in the Christmas play. When you’re frustrated in Hebrew School because Hebrew simply doesn’t make sense to you. When you get that bad hair cut. When you think you want to be a beauty queen, when you swear off fashion altogether.

I will be there..

When the mean girls make you want to shrivel inside your skin. When a teacher intimidates you. When you intimidate the teachers. When you think you can sing and try out for a musical, when you get laughed at and people point fingers at your hair and your shoes and your too wide of hips.

My darling, I will be there.

When that boy breaks your heart and you’re stranded at a college miles away, I will be there. When the internship you thought was part of your calling falls through. When a friend gets sick. When the car crashes. When you have more long distance charges than you thought possible. When you run out of gas, chocolate chip cookies and faith.

I will be there.

When you say your “I dos,” when you you start your happily ever afters, when none of it quite feels like you thought it would.  When you don’t know how to pick a mattress, when the sofa is in the wrong place, when you regret what feels like signing your life away to someone else. When you keep on keeping on. When you remember how to say sorry. When you need a safe place to say how cliche you feel all “barefoot and pregnant” I will so be there.

When the baby won’t sleep and the world’s on fire with sleep exhaustion.

Sweetheart, I will be there.

When your husband’s out of work. When you’re down to one car and have moved in with his in-laws. When your job threatens to break your heart. When toddlers make you question your sanity. When you realize that you’ve made the worst mistake a woman can make. When you’ve run out of tears and still the tears keeping coming.

I will be there.

When you move and move and relocate again. When you pack boxes and dreams and hope. When your life is a world of duct tape and questions. I will still be there.

And when your home is warm and your heart is full. When you’re at peace. When you need someone to share the joy, to watch the kids, to admire the dimples. When you want to remember that old recipe for spaghetti sauce or french onion soup, when you still can’t pick a sofa, when you wish you’d never said yes to the dog.

When you don’t know where you’re going. When you’re the most sure of yourself you’ve ever been. When you’re holding onto faith with just your fingernails.

Ruby, always I will be there. One hundred different ways I will come when you call.

I will rock and roll you with my love and the promise that I will help you get back on your feet. I will hold your hand. I will rejoice. I will babysit. I will pass the tissues. I will wash the dishes.

I will be there.

Tonight.

Tomorrow.

And the day after. And after.

And then some.

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LBT the Second

Yesterday we were lucky enough to see LittleBabyThomsen2 – he/she is growing and looking great! I’ve never seen a baby move so much. When we were expecting Ruby we had to take weekly non-stress tests, which is just being hooked up to a baby monitor and tracking baby’s heart rate during big movements. But Ruby consistently failed, which is a cause of concern and I would have to do ultrasounds instead and each week, hope for the best. Ruby just NEVER moved. But this baby was going absolutely crazy – twisting and turning and waving it’s arms and kicking it’s legs. It was hilarious. Or, at least I find it funny now until I can actually feel it!

Here’s the baby’s most recent beauty shot:

lbt212weeks

Our next appointment is at the end of this month and that’s when we’ll find out gender – so long as he/she cooperates.

I’ve started in on the cravings. They’re all over the place. I went to the grocery store today to buy a few ingredients to make tacos for dinner and spent $150 on way too many things we didn’t need. But tonight my cravings were crudité (which I inhaled) and now I’m enjoying some yogurt and granola. I couldn’t tell you the last time I said “hmm… I think I’ll have some veggies and then kashi with yogurt.” This is a new one!

We’ve also started to get Ruby excited for a baby… she gets so excited when she sees babies on the computer or tv and says “bay-bay”… she’s going to be the BEST big sister. Just look at her! Almost 15 months now!

ruby15months

 

13 Months

Floral centerpieces

Floral centerpieces

Room before the party!

Room before the party!

Today, on her 13th month birthday, Ruby started to crawl. This is an exciting time in a child’s life – exploration and all things one can get her little hands on. But I suppose this is just as equally exciting for us as parents. I can finally stop stressing about why our little girl just didn’t want to get her move on. I never stopped to think that she would – just on her own time. As a dear friend who understands said to me, My mom always said, you never point to a preschooler and say, “Oh, well, obviously, she crawled early.” Exactly.

With that said, thought I would share last month’s first birthday pictures. Such a GREAT day, great celebration and felt A LOT of love. Love my sweet, Ruby.

Some Photos of a One Year Old

Just the three of us!

Just the three of us!

Had a quick chance to post a few photos from the party… such a great time! More to come when the rest come in!

 

Cake time!

Cake time!

Why do I have to smash it? I want to eat it!

Why do I have to smash it? I want to eat it!

Um, mom? There's cake on my hand!

Um, mom? There’s cake on my hand!

Pretty, pretty princess!

Pretty, pretty princess!

Oh this old thing?

Oh this old thing?

Part of the all pink candy bar!

Part of the all pink candy bar!

Smash cake!

Smash cake!

Face Painters!

Face Painters!

 

 

Birthday Hat with Floral Centerpieces!

Birthday Hat with Floral Centerpieces!

Cake not made for smashing!

Cake not made for smashing!

Beautiful flowers that I put together for the tables.

Beautiful flowers that I put together for the tables.

Finallly, at the end the afternoon - a princess needed her nap.

Finallly, at the end the afternoon – a princess needed her nap.

Photo says it all.

Photo says it all.

Ruby with her Great Auntie Mary!

Ruby with her Great Auntie Mary!

Ruby's first American Girl Doll - Itty Bitty Baby! She's so happy!

Ruby’s first American Girl Doll – Itty Bitty Baby! She’s so happy!

Day before the Big ONE!

Today we celebrated all things Ruby – that being her 1st birthday. Tomorrow she turns one, and today we celebrated her. I have pics to come and happy things to share, but in the meantime, here’s a video of her with her smash cake and us singing Happy Birthday….

Sincerely one of the best days of my life (of course not compared to that of the day when she was born, but to be honest, it’s a lot easier to celebrate her than birth her!). Thank you to all who made today special for my little girl (and to Don and I). We’re all super lucky.

Happy Birthday to our sweet gem… now off to a mommy and daddy dinner because, well, we survived a year. And we deserve it!!

Thank you all again for following us for this wonderful year!

M-I-C (see you real soon) K-E-Y (Why? Because we like you) M-O-U-S-E

Well we have finally picked and planned our holiday vacation and off to Disney World we go. Yes, we all know Ruby is a bit young and probably won’t enjoy the adventure as much as mom and dad… but practically all of the hotels in Hawaii were booked and something about Disney and the holidays go hand in hand. So we leave Christmas morning and return New Years Day. I can’t imagine a better way to spend Ruby’s first Christmas than in a world where dreams come true. And we’ll get to visit my something-removed-cousin and her family (of which I never met – but I believe we discovered our great-grandfather’s were brothers) and visit my dearest of friends from childhood (and adult) Lori and her family with her latest addition of Joshua who is only a few days old now. And then of course, we’ll get to introduce Ruby to her Great-Great Aunt. I only wish her Great-Great Uncle was around to meet. There are certainly days I miss him and I’m positive he would have gotten a kick out of Little Miss Ruby.

But that’s all to come in the next few weeks… first we have Thanksgiving – which we’re looking forward to. Hosting a small gathering, but always one I love to host. Thank goodness I have family recipes so I can still enjoy what little remains of the family who won’t be with us.

This past weekend we kicked off our holiday spirit and visted with friends in Peoria. One of my most favorite friends from college, Danielle and her husband, Andrew invited us – so a 3.5 hour drive later we found ourselves, with pups and baby, in a hotel for two nights to practice our family vacation. We packed like we were staying for a week – empty bottles ready to go so we didn’t have to clean them while we were there – the exersaucer – broken down to fit in the car and then rebuilt, etc. – the mamaroo that fit perfectly next to Ruby’s carseat in the backseat. Really, we brought a lot – I’m surprised we all fit in the car. But the trip was AMAZING. Ruby slept (like a baby, duh), she was so well behanved the entire trip – the pups were comfortable in the “suite” and we had such a great visit with friends.  One of the highlights would be at the mall Danielle works as an accountant for. They started the mall’s holiday season with the lighting of their Grand Christmas tree, visiting with Santa, a DJ, free hot chocolate and cookies and then a giant rocking horse, of which we OBVIOUSLY had to ride! Ha. Here are some cute photos and some video we took of a few adventures… they are not edited videos, but some are FUNNY. Take a look for yourself!

Hanging out in the hotel. Ruby was giving me a run down of her Christmas list before she met Santa to ask him herself.

Here Ruby is meeting Santa and Mrs. Claus. She’s a little non-chalant about it, but inside I know she’s screaming “Santa! I know him!” (a little Elf throwback for those who don’t know)

Our family with the Claus’.

This would be Ruby hanging out in the hotel, eating mommy’s cookie. Notice Daddy’s sneeze and how it makes her jump!

This is the kickoff of Christmas – the lighting of the tree!

This would be us heading up to the rocking horse:

Earlier that day we had lunch and ice-cream… where Ruby had her first taste of all that is right in the world:

Then this is when Ruby finally met THE MAN:

And finally, here is Ruby getting a kick out of, well, kicking and fighting Daddy!

Lots of fun – and can’t wait to share more pics of the holiday seasons to come. Ruby, Don and I wish you all a very happy Thanksgiving. There is a lot to be thankful for this year and we certainly recognize to appreciate what we do have and help those who are without.