Post Wild Rumpus

Posted by Karen in Isla.
Tuesday, February 9th, 2010 at 2:07 pm

wild rumpus

Isla’s New Best Friend

Posted by Karen in Bruno, Isla.
Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010 at 4:40 pm

Isla has recently fallen in love with Bruno. She stares at him all day long, smiles and giggles at him, and loves putting her hands in his fur or trying to grab his ears. It’s pretty adorable. See for yourself:

Holiday Photos

Posted by Karen in Family, Food, Friends, Holidays/Birthdays/Etc, Isla.
Saturday, January 23rd, 2010 at 3:43 pm

Family Portait

Family portrait

Punky Brewster shoes

This was the one and only time Isla got to wear her Punky Brewster shoes, because they fit her for this one day only.


A lot of shortbread was made, and as the official shortbread judge, I declare this particular batch of Quentin’s was the best.

schpeck bread

For some reason, there were several equally odd pics of Quentin and I at Christmas dinner enjoying the bread made with speck (yummy bacon-like stuff Q brought back with him from Italy).

Ricky Story

Isla still really loves to have stories read to her!  Grandpa Ricky read to her all about a very hungry caterpillar.

making poutine

Nate & I decided sort of last-minute like to invite a few friends over for poutine & pints on New Year’s day.  Here he is making the delicious gravy, which we poured over plates of homemade fries topped with cheese curds.  Yummmm.

Poutine & Pints 2010

It ended up sort of being Babypalooza!  Look at all those kids!

lady friends & kids

We’re outnumbered ladies!

little bird

My favorite new outfit of Isla’s, which she was working on drenching in drool.


Isla’s first sled ride!  Well, actually, the snow was so wet and heavy that we really couldn’t pull it anywhere, so we just sat her in it in her waaaay too big snowsuit and took pictures of her.


Isla’s first snow man!

And the making of her first snowman:

Poopy Team

Posted by Karen in Isla, The Blog, Weather.
Wednesday, December 9th, 2009 at 12:02 pm

Eating BaconThat’s what we should rename this blog, Poopy Team.  Because frankly, baby poo is all I talk about any more.

So this morning we woke to a few inches of snow, dropping temps and a mean wind, and promptly decided to both work from home.  But then our internets broke, making it so we couldn’t actually work.  Nate got on the phone with the tech people, who put him on hold and promised him a very long wait.  I was chilling with Isla on the couch, when suddenly she unleashed a monster poo.  Now at the time, she was only wearing a tiny, thin little contour diaper, for reasons you’re probably not interested in.  I had her sitting on top of anotheStockingr prefold diaper, just in case there was a poo incident.  At least… I thought I had her on top of the second diaper.  But wouldn’t you know, I sure didn’t.  And all that poo (and there was a lot, about 2 days’ worth) came shooting right out the side of her diaper ALLLLLLL OVER ME.  Nate put his phone down with the hold music on speaker phone and scooped Isla up to deal with her diaper situation.  I attempted to contain the poo explosioSocklessn on me with another diaper and started slowly making my way to the bathroom, but of course that was the moment someone picked up Nate’s call.  Somehow I managed to get his phone to him before they hung up on us, and not leave a trail of baby poo all through the house.  Half an hour later, all poo had been dealt with, and our internets was again working, though not because of the super un-helpful tech people.  Table walking

The thing about being covered in poo by 9am is, your day can only get better.

In other news, Isreadingla rolled over yesterday, from back to tummy.  None of this rolling from tummy to back first stuff for her.  She does what she wants.  And immediately after that achievement, she seemed to decide that big girls who can roll over require more constant entertainment.  No more hanging out happily in her swing, thank you very much, and the mirror ball thing that used to be so fascinating is now so last week.  Rolling Over Isla prefers to be very involved in whatever you’re doing, unless whatever you’re doing is B-O-R-I-N-G, in which case her various toys might bMarchinge cool for about 5 minutes each, or you could sing her a song and do a little dance, but your dance had better be good.  But this is how it goes.  Any time we start to get a groove, she’s like “oh you think you’ve got me figured out, eh?  Sounds like it’s time for me to bust out a whole new bag of tricks.”  Well I say bring it baby.  Let’s see what you got.

Pick of the Patch

Posted by Karen in Day to Day, Isla.
Sunday, October 18th, 2009 at 9:04 pm

Most people who know me know that I am not generally super gushy about babies.  But there are a couple of baby scenarios that never fail to melt my heart of ice.  One of those scenarios is babies in a pile of pumpkins.  Oh man.  It just kills me.  And now we have our very own baby who I do actually gush about all day long every day, so imagine then what happened when we did this:pick of the patch

GUSH GUSH GUSH!!!  AHHHHH!  So cute.barn & wine

Today we took Isla out to Aamodt’s apple orchard.  Every year I think we should explore some of the other orchards, but since St. Croix Vineyards happens to be in the same place as Aamodt’s, the prospect of wine tasting always lures me in like a fat kid to cake.

Normally when wwine tastinge go places with Isla people are all “Ohhhh, look at your baby!”  But this place was Babyville, so everyone was more like “Yeah, you have a baby?  Big deal. I have 8.”  There were also more dads with babies in all sorts of carriers than I have ever seen anywhere.  Very tree

So Isla had her 2 month check-up this past Monday, and for those keeping score, here are her stats:

Weight: 12 lbs 13 oz *disclaimer: she hadn’t pooped in approximately 36 hours, so this may not have been a totally accurate representation of her actual weight.

me n' punkinLength: 23.5″

Circumference of head with enormous brain inside: 15.5″

All of this means she’s currently in something like the 80th percentile on the growth charts.  Yay, grow little sprout, grow!

She’s now smiling lots for reasons other than gastrointestinal accomplishments, holding her head up fairly well, making more eye contact and engaging much more, and starting to sleep a bit longer and less noisily at night.guy smiley

As for her parents, we are gaining confidence, patience, and flexibility.  I have to admit, at some point every day I find myself shaking my head in disbelief.  I mean, my whole entire pregnancy and her birth, especially the moment she went from mystery baby on the inside to holdable, huggable baby on the outside, are still very vivid in my mind, but yet I still can’t quite believe that she came from us.  I wonder if it will ever really sink in.  Or if we will ever stop being constantly amazed at how much she changes from day to day, or if our hearts will ever reach full capacity instead of continuing to fall more and more in love with her every day.  Sigh.  Gush gush gush…

More Isla!

Posted by Karen in Day to Day, Family, Isla.
Sunday, October 4th, 2009 at 8:17 pm

Unleash… the Tinykins!

Posted by Nate in Isla.
Sunday, September 13th, 2009 at 10:09 pm

We’ve had a few requests for video of Isla, and we’ve run out of excuses.  Without further ado, I present an epic poo, one she saved up for about 36 hours.  Just watch the video.

She’s growing!

Posted by Nate in Isla.
Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009 at 8:49 pm


Well, the little tinykins is changing every day.  Obviously, when you consider that every day she lives now is almost 1/20th of her entire life.  Whoa.

20090902194102_dsc01221.jpgShe’s a trooper, though, as is her mom (and dad).  We’re learning just how little sleep you can survive on (she’s a noisy sleeper (when she sleeps)), and she’s learning how to communicate her needs to sleepy parents.

20090902194046_dsc01218.jpgWe took her out to Merlins Rest the other day, and she was a champ – slept almost the whole time.  Little outings are good for us as we start to realize how changed our life is now.  No more dinners for two.  Ever.  Or at least, not for a while.  :)

20090902194033_dsc01201.jpgBut don’t think that’s a complaint!  It’s just a realization, an internalizing of the reality of our new situation.  Our duoteam has expanded, and it’s wonderful to watch this new person grow day by day.  Incredible.  She is So.  Freaking.  Cute.

(These Betsy Bowen books are her total favorite.  She doesn’t focus on anything really yet, but she sure tries the hardest with these books)

Tomorrow we’re going to try the State Fair.  Wish us luck!


Isla pics

Posted by Nate in Isla.
Thursday, August 27th, 2009 at 12:58 am

Due to popular demand:






… and then there was the baby!

Posted by Karen in Isla, Malarkey.
Wednesday, August 19th, 2009 at 8:51 pm

Monday morning we went to the hospital to get checked out after I had a bloody gush thing happen.  We were worried something was wrong, and ended up being told, to our total surprise, that we were in early labor!  They hooked me up to an electronic monitor and the midwife asked us some questions.  Then she said, "So while we’ve been talking you’ve had two contractions."  And I was like, say what?  She couldn’t believe I didn’t notice them. Then I started really paying attention, and realized that the slight little crampies I had been feeling the past couple of days in my lower abdomen and lower back were timed with when the monitor said I was20090819185211_dsc01103.jpg having contractions,and oh yeah, my uterus also was turning hard as a rock at the same time.  Huh.  After they ran a few tests to rule out anything being wrong, the midwife did another pelvic exam and found that I was almost 2 cm dilated, where I had been just about 1 cm when she first examined me when we got there.  So she told us we were in early labor, but that things could continue that way with little contractions for the next week or two.  Or we could have a baby that night.  Either way, no point in hanging out there. 

We busted out of there and headed straight to Pizza Luce to carbo-load and make a plan of action.  We had called our doula to give her a heads up and agreed to keep in touch as things progressed.  When we got home Nate and I both began a mad rush of trying to get things in order at work and home for us to potentially be very busy for the next, oh, 8 weeks, give or take.

My contractions had definitely gotten stronger, but were still not a big deal, so I called our doula again in the evening and told her I was sure we would get a good night’s sleep. I was wrong.  I slept a bit between contractions, but at about 3am a new somethin somethin got added to them.  I woke Nate up and said it was time to call our doula and ask her to come over.  He replied with a very doubtful "really?"  I said yes, and I think we need to go to the hospital.  Again with the doubtful "really?"

I forced down a bowl of Gorilla Munch, cereal of choice of this preggo, and hopped in the shower, determined to start this whole thing off squeaky clean, because who knew how long it would all take?  Our doula Emme came over, watched me for a bit, and said well, yeah, physically where I was at seemed like a good time to go to the hospital, except that I was still speaking in coherent sentences, and that was throwing her off.  I said let’s hit it, so we did, and that 25 minute car ride to Woodwinds totally suuuuucked. 

We got to the hospital at 5:30am and found out that our midwife, Jess, who we had been seeing throughout the entire pregnancy, happened to be starting the next shift at 6am.  Hell yes! 

OK I know this is super long but believe it or not it’s still just a summary. I will gladly give more details to anyone who wants them though, because seriously, the birth of our little girl was truly awesome.  I don’t know a lot of people who speak of their birth experiences in a positive light at all, and that is really unfortunate.  There are so many reasons for that, and we realize how fortunate we are that so many things lined up just right, literally – baby in the perfect position, cervix and dilation and all that happening more or less how it should, etc.  But more often than not mamas don’t know that birth can be a positive experience.  Television and movies and doctors and hospitals and really, people in general, would all have you believe that it is going to be the worst pain of your life and that the whole thing is completely out of your control.  But the fact is there are a lot of things you can control going into it, you don’t have to be terrified, and it doesn’t have to be the worst pain of your life at all.  I really feel that all the hard work Nate and I both did to have a super healthy pregnancy, to educate ourselves on the whole process, and to prepare ourselves mentally really paid off in a big, big way.  But like I said, we also know that things could have20090819185117_dsc00965.jpg easily gone a very different way and that a bunch of it really is luck of the draw.  Still, I can’t help but think that if more women knew that it was possible to have a wonderful, amazing birth experience, there would be more wonderful, amazing birth experiences!

OK, so here are the basics.  The only thing I had known I would need ahead of time was good music playing the entire time, and I had put together a few different moods of play lists ahead of time.  To my surprise, I stuck with the most mellow of the play lists the entire time.  I was in the zone in a big way.  All hail Blooma prenatal yoga, for teaching me how to really breathe, and how to focus.  I seriously can’t believe how important that ended up being. 

Nate was the most amazing birth partner ever.  The few things we had known ahead of time I would get crabby with him over, I did indeed get crabby with him over – saying "right with me" like he does to the dog, 20090819185052_dsc00952.jpgsaying "that’s right" like Quagmire from Family Guy, and coaching too much (aka telling me what to do).  But these were just tiny blips in an overall showing of true awesomeness.  I can’t say that I’m even a little bit surprised at this.  He knows me and knew exactly what I needed and what to do at all times, and never left my side, or actually my front or back, since he was always holding me up in one way or another.

Things progressed pretty rapidly.  We labored in the birthing tub, and the hardest part was when my body was ready to push but my cervix wasn’t quite there, and I had to try to not push.  That, in case you were wondering, is damn near impossible.  I got out of the tub for a bit, and my water burst with a POP! and a big puddle all over the floor, just like on TV, except that I wasn’t in the middle of the grocery store and it wasn’t like the first sign of labor.  Apparently, that almost never really happens, the whole pop and gush thing.  It scared the crap out of everyone in the room, myself included.  

Luckily, things opened up all the way pretty quickly, and I finally got to let ‘er rip.  And ohhhh the sounds that came out of me.  I had no idea I could gro20090819185145_dsc01045.jpgwl and roar like that.  I even tried to tone it down because I was worried I was scaring any other mamas in neighboring rooms, but again, damn near impossible.  We finally could feel the top of her head, which I thought meant she’d be out in the next push, but not so!  Many pushes, roars, and screams of "BABY COME OUT!!!" later, out she flew!  We were in the birthing tub, and Jess said "Karen, grab your baby!"  I reached down, grabbed her, and pulled her out of the water, and was immediately astounded at how big and chubby she was!  How the hell did that come out of me?!?  And how huge her hands were!  Yes, these were the things I thought first, not oh, my sweet angel, not oh blessed miracle of life.  That all came later. 

That was all 1 week and 1 20090819185241_dsc01136.jpgday ago, though it feels like forever.  And now we have a sweet beautiful little girl named Isla in our lives, and we pretty much stare in amazement at her all day long, and dream of all the future holds.  The adventure has begun!