Monday, June 29, 2015

Nine Months of Lake

What the what? Where'd my little baby go? And who took my scrawny arms and replaced them with these buuuulging biceps?! Oh, the answer to both questions: My 24 pound nine month old.

A whole lot has changed in the last few months! Lake sleeps in a crib, I have a job, and it's hotter than Hades outside.

I love co-sleeping but it was time to let Lake be a big girl. I could tell she just wanted to sleep on her tummy and roll around at night. Now she finally goes to bed at a decent hour and sleeps all the way until the morning! I feed her maybe once in the early AM and put her back down then we both get a few more hours. Everyone in the house is happy, but I still love the times she naps on my chest so we can snuggle!

In April I was able to score a perfect job nannying for a family of three boys close by. I'm really loving it! I get to take Lake every day so it's like being paid to be a mom to my own child in someone else's house! It's helped me schedule and plan out my day so much better too. I do so much better when I know I have to be somewhere each day and can't just lay around the house avoiding those pesky adult responsibilities.

Last summer I was pregnant and miserable. It's so wonderful to be out in the sun without hating life and cursing the heat. But it is like intensely hot, people!

Now, let's get to the real reason I write not have to write and just post adorable pictures of my fat lil baby! Weeeeeee!
December to January - 4 Months

January to February - 5 Months

February - Five Months - I love these faces! She's so fun. 

March - 6 Months
March to April - 7 Months

April to May - 8 Months
May to June - 9 Months

Sorry, but I just had to post the poop picture! If I had to clean it, you at least have to see it! Hehe.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

What I Love About Lake

February 19th, 2015  -  Five months

I love having Lake in my life.

She is five and a half months old and I love spending every day getting to know her. Lake definitely has a personality. She is so full of life! Babbling, rolling, gnawing, smiling, laughing, screaming. She's only quiet and out of trouble when I'm holding her. If she could talk she would be saying, "Yes, mother, I know you have things to do, but if you could just carry me at all times then I wouldn't have to whine and cry. And if you can't do that, then at least make constant eye contact with me not to be broken for even a split second! That's not asking too much, is it?!" And I do it.

Some of the things I love about Lake right now are as follows:

·First and foremost, the girl smells like Golden Grams. It is her natural scent. And this isn't just me talking, Aaron agrees as well. Every baby is different they say, well my baby is a cereal and she is delicious.

·The grocery store we go to a few times a week is the perfect place to put her in her Moby Wrap and walk the aisles. I love the time I get to spend with her hugged up against me with her head right at  perfect kissing level.

·At bath time she thinks it's so entertaining to kick her legs furiously until most of the water is splashed out.

·Lake loves to put her mouth on any and everything. Her toys are nice, but she is in Heaven if she can get her mouth on a bottle or jug, a diaper, the foot of her crib, my arm, my finger, my cheek bone, her hairbrush, material of any kind (preferably the kind that would most likely cause her to suffocate) and books. And this girl can roll! So even though she's not quite crawling, with her rolling skills she's put more things in her mouth than I can remember at this point.

·I love how Lake knows her daddy and gets excited when he walks in the door from school. Aaron picks her up and throws her in the air and she giggles like she's been saving all her best, cutest laughter for daddy.

·When Lake is really into a toy and just has laser concentration. That really is my favorite! I just love her staring at her pacifiers like she's about to make a serious breakthrough that will unlock all of the mysteries of the universe.

·We just got her a jumper that sits in the living room that keeps her so occupied! Even when she's had enough and wants out she still is jumping up and down steadily. It's like her mind is bored but her legs can't quit having all the fun.

·If Lake isn't sleeping, she's buzzing her lips and blowing bubbles. It's a constant. She just loves blowing raspberries and babbling until she's covered herself and anyone close by in her saliva.

·I have been waiting my whole life to snuggle a sleeping baby and Lake does not disappoint! She brings the snuggles. Holding a sleeping baby close is it's own natural high! I hope she stays this cuddly forever. I love how she wakes up and smiles so big at me like she's saying, "Ready to play now!"

·She makes it pretty easy when trying to get her to laugh. She laughs at dumb noises, funny faces, or just being picked up even. Watching Aaron dance really does it to her too. His silly, stupid dancing is always a hit!

Lake makes it easy to be her mom!
Now if she could cut back on the daily poopy blowouts, growing out of clothes (she is in size 18mo!), and waking me every hour in the night to nurse and snuggle...I would...LOVE HER THE EXACT SAME CAUSE LOOK AT THAT FACE.

January 27th, 2015 - Lake's first day rolling over!

A Year In Utah: Then to Now

The three years we had in California were the best of my life! From all the amazing jobs I was blessed with to our awesome ward. The weather. The hiking. The ocean breeze. It was a dream life. It's March now so that means exactly one year has passed since we left! I was three months pregnant and just starting to get on the other side of miserable morning sickness and fatigue when we departed from our blissful life in beautiful Santa Monica and moved into my parents basement in Provo. I couldn't even tell the difference at first! *sarcasm*

This is the story of then til now!

Carah Gets Pregnant
When I found out I was pregnant it was Friday, January 10th 2014. After a solid two years of trying unsuccessfully, I just let everything fall into place whenever I was meant to have a baby. Time finally passed so much faster and I felt more grateful for all of the amazing things and people in my life.

After two weeks of having my dearest friend Kendall stay with me, I realized I hadn't taken a pregnancy test for two weeks. Nothing big, nothing wild...I just peed on a stick and it told me I was a mom. I strutted into the bedroom where Aaron was laying down and pulled out the two pee sticks from behind my back! We couldn't believe it. Then we counted the months...February, March....4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9...September! We're having a baby in September! I was five weeks pregnant.

That week in January went like this:

Sunday: Kendall and Carah go hiking and a car pulls out and hits us on the way home and my car is totaled
Monday: Kendall and Carah have fun
Tuesday: Kendall and Carah have fun
Wednesday: Kendall and Carah have fun
Thursday: Kendall leaves back home to Utah and Carah is lonely
Saturday: I fly to Florida

It was an intense few weeks. Thankfully Kendall and I lived through the car crash and were still able to do fun things that week and it didn't affect the tiny little baby! I was listening to Christian music in the car. It protected us. Hallelujah!

The mom I nannied for from April 2013 to February 2014 is among my favorite people alive. She ranks pretty high. I love her. I love her husband. I love her baby. I love her dog. I just freaking loved that job. We talked nonstop about the glorious day when I would finally get my chance to be a mom. So it was with great excitement that the next day after I found out the news she picked me up from my house early in the morning to leave for a business trip to Orlando with her for the week.

In the car was the whole troop. Christine, Ross, baby Charlotte and the lovable dog, Reiley. The sun wasn't quite up yet when I threw my suitcase in the trunk and then opened Charlotte's door to say hello. I patted Charlotte's head and said, "Ahhh! I can't wait until I get one of these in nine months!" *pause with giant grin on my face* We all screamed and they congratulated me. And that's how I remember what day my unbearable nausea started.

February was was doozy. I literally think I laid in bed the entire month except for one trip I took with Christine to Santa Barbara, one dinner out when my parents were in town for my 25th birthday, and a trip to the doctors to see our baby! Those were not pleasant times. But listening to my baby's heartbeat and just holding on to the future I would have with my future child gave me so much happiness I managed to get through it.

February 6th, 2014
At the doctor's office getting my first ultrasound!

Hi frog looking baby! You are 9 weeks along!

March 4th, 2014
13 weeks pregnant
The announcement we posted for everyone to see! 
With a baby coming, we realized Aaron needed to go back to the U to finish his degree in Computer Science if he was going to adequately provide for this baby. My boss decided to quit her job to stay at home with her daughter right at the time I felt too sick to work so everything worked out for the best!

Pregnancy for me was not pretty. I was pregnant through three seasons and spent the whole summer indoors hiding from the heat. The most difficult trial in my pregnancy were the painful rashes on my arms and chest that made me lose my mind. Things got better when I stopped wearing a bra though! (When in doubt about anything, take off your bra and life will improve. Works every time.) 

Hard Symptoms of Pregnancy Include:

·The itchiest most insane rashes on my chest and arms
·Sickening nausea for the first five months
·Hunger pains that woke me up multiple times a night to eat and eat and eat
·Painfully swollen feet and hands including carpel tunnel and completely numb fingers

Then you add constant trips to the bathroom, feeling like an ugly whale all the time, and never having anything to wear and you've got me! But even as I type this, Lake sits babbling next to me on the bed and for her...I'd do it again in a heartbeat! It's weird. I didn't have any bad heartburn or anything like that so I count myself lucky in that regard. I am actually extremely lucky because I was able to get my back worked on once a week by a massage therapist and a chiropractor to correct things from my car accident which made this pregnancy much more bearable

I think if I learned anything from those long, drawn out months waiting for Lake to arrive it's that I can't sit around waiting for life to begin. Because now that Lake is here I could just as easily get discontent and choose to set my sights on when Aaron graduates as the marker for when I will start living. I want to experience every day with excitement in whatever season of my life I'm in. So I just remember to ask myself, "What do I love doing? What makes me happy?" Then I can go for walks, hike, go to the temple, read books, play with my niece and nephews, visit friends, and get projects done so I feel like I made that day count! 

I mean, I did a few things while I was pregnant that I was proud of. I learned to code and built a website for my dad's framing business! I also woke up early on the weekends to go to garage sales where I scored so many marvelous baby items! But I'd say just growing a human was productive in itself. 

I got my prenatal care from the amazing American Fork midwife group at Valley Obstetrics and Gynecology. Six midwives rotated appointments each time I came in so I got to know a whole team of amazing women! I was always so excited for my prenatal check ups! 
Next time I'm pregnant, I hope I'm in Utah so I can get my care through them again! I count my blessings everyday that Lake was healthy and the entire pregnancy had zero concerns or complications! 

At our 18 week appointment we got to find out our baby's gender and it was one of the most thrilling days of my life! I thought I was definitely going to have a boy, but when that ultrasound screen came up and they said my growing baby was a girl I forgot all notions about boys and couldn't wait to meet my DAUGHTER!

13 weeks
18 weeks

April 9th, 2014  -  18 weeks 
Found out Carah Jr. is on her way!
April 18th  -  19 weeks and June 7th, 2014  -  26 weeks
Yay to having friends with babies! Ameri was about two months ahead of my pregnancy. Here we are at her baby shower holding the little quilt I sewed for baby Bellamy! 

June 15th, 2014  -  28 weeks

July 4th, 2014  -  30 weeks
July 28th  -  33 weeks
July 31st  -  33 weeks

August 7th  -  35 weeks
The baby shower at Mary Lee's house was amazing beyond my wildest dreams! I can't even explain. You just had to be there.
August 16th, 2014  -  37 weeks
Aaron and I drove back to LA for a week. I really missed California. 
September 8th, 2014  -  39 weeks
Mary Lee is such a treasure. She took my full grown tummy and painted a Henna masterpiece! 
So hard not to laugh while getting painted by that woman though...

41 weeks
Waiting for my little girl.

Carah Has a Baby 
I went into labor on the morning of September 19th. Bringing Lake into this world was the hardest thing I have ever done, but I would do it over just to feel that matchless joy of meeting her again. She was so perfect. I was in love. I will never be able to find the words, but I wrote a few more over here.  

Holding this tiny, incomprehensible miracle in my arms for the first time. 

September 20th, 2014  -  1 day old
Her lips are so gorgeous. She takes my breath away!
Lake's birth announcement  

The Burrells Move to Salt Lake
We have made it to the end of the story! We are now in Salt Lake and I have a five month old baby who is rolling and laughing and still keeping me up all night. 

After ten months of living in Provo it was time to move closer to the U for Aaron. January 8th we packed up and moved into the married student housing on campus where we already resided from 2009 to 2011. There are about 60 different housing blocks we could have been assigned to but we got placed exactly. below. our. old. apartment. It was like a sick joke. But even though our apartment number is just one digit off from our old number and I mix them up all the time and even though our church starts at 9am when we just endured a year of 9am church...I know this place will be a good home for us as we start our new life as a family of three! 

This has been the best year of my life because it gave me the chance to be a mother. I love Aaron so much and I love seeing him as a father. He is so involved with Lake and cherishes every moment he spends with her. He exceeded my expectations as a husband and now as a father to our baby girl. Seeing Aaron as he rocks Lake to sleep or makes her giggle furiously really taps me out on love for him. He is just too good. 

This is just the beginning of our life as parents. I know there is so much more for us three and I honestly just can't wait to see what life has in store! More children to have, more love to give, more patience to increase, more places to visit. We have so many more decisions to make and paths to walk down but now we can do it all together! The future can be scary when it's so uncertain, but as long as I can squeeze these two forever, I've got all I need!  

February 8th, 2014
Daddy, Mommy, and Lakey