Have a great weekend!


Sunday in the Park

Last weekend, Aaron suggested we take Shepherd to the park. It was amazing outside, cool and breezy, and so I grabbed a blanket and some Ritz crackers, Aaron grabbed the camera and the baby, and we took Shepherd to Tom Brown Park for a few hours.

Aaron mentioned going out to the water, and I was so excited. I didn’t even know Tom Brown Park had a lake; I had only been one time before, last spring, and we went to a different part of the park. That’s one of the benefits of having a husband who has been on crews shooting all across the city!

Shepherd was surprisingly happy considering he was pretty hungry while we were out. It was a lot windier than we anticipated, and though we had pants for Shepherd, I didn’t bring a sweater, and we ended up wrapping him up in a blanket when we weren’t carrying him around. It was so beautiful and bucolic there!

After about two hours of happily wandering around, lying on our picnic blankets and taking some video of our happy baby, we decided we were in the mood for ice cream cones. We left the park (going the wrong way on the one-way street) and stopped at McDonald’s.

Shepherd’s first trip to the park is one of my favorite memories of our family thus far. Nothing flashy or remarkable, just amazing weather and my two favorite people to share the day with!

Shepherd :: Two Months

My sweet smiley boy,

Happy two months! I love counting these milestones with you. In fact, we talk a lot! Since I get to spend all day with you, I try to tell you as much about your world as I possibly can, from the people you meet to the places we go to the things you see, smell, hear, taste and touch. I want you to learn and explore, and I want you to love to the fullest.

This month you have blossomed from our sleepy, baby guy into a boisterous, smiley, happy little fellow. You have certainly gotten longer, and I think you are making a case to be in the NBA. You are still wearing size one diapers, but you have now outgrown almost all of your 0-3 month clothes, and you are starting to comfortably fill out your 3 month and 3-6 month clothes. I was very sad when your feetsies got too big for your footed onesies and I couldn’t zip or snap them without them not covering your shoulders! I still think baby clothes are sized arbitrarily, and it’s hard for me to put clothes away and think that you will never, ever be able to fit in them again. It seems silly, but one day, when you have babies of your own, you might understand.

Your favorite thing this month, aside from Mama (as Daddy says) is your swaddle blanket. You absolutely love gripping and putting your swaddles up to your mouth, and they are very comforting to you when you’re tired, grumpy or getting your diaper changed. It’s a good thing we have several! You have learned to follow us with your eyes, and you are smiling seemingly all the time now! There’s nothing better than waking up to your gummy smile in the mornings. You smile especially big when I say funny things to you and tickle your tummy, and you have recently started to smile when Daddy says things to you, too. You love your Moby wrap, and any time you are grumpy, especially around the time Daddy comes home, I find it easiest to wrap you up and keep you close to me to calm you down.

You are easily wound up. When we first see your legs kicking, you are usually smiling, but we have to be careful not to overstimulate you, or the kicks will more vigorous, and you will end up in tears with the commotion. It took us a while to realize you weren’t just exercising those legs; you were communicating with them!

You still don’t have a full head of hair, but, slowly and surely, it is creeping up to the top of your head. Daddy calls it your toupee, or your Donald, as in Donald Trump. You are still long and lean, and almost everyone who meets you comments on what a big boy you are. You have very long arms that look like wings! Your eyes are still grayish, but I think they are turning green. You’re still a good eater, and for that I am so thankful and blessed! You haven’t had a bottle yet, but we will begin introducing them soon. After you eat, you sometimes get the “chipmunks,” or hiccups. You hate them!

Since last month, you’ve graduated from hating baths, period, to enjoying them, but you especially love showers. You still hate tummy time, and I hate making you lie there (seemingly) in misery, but you have to develop your back, shoulder, neck and stomach muscles if you want to play basketball one day! When we visited Texas, Birdie tried to do tummy time with you and you positively hated it. You screamed like I’ve never heard before! Birdie refused to be in charge of tummy time for the rest of the week; she hated seeing you so upset. And that’s one thing you have certainly developed—a temper! You have very distinct angry cries vs. needy cries, and I sometimes can’t believe how much of a hot head you can be. You get especially mad when I let you cry in your crib before or after taking a nap. If I go to wherever you’re supposed to be napping and you see me, you will go from a medium, irritated cry to an all-out, red-in-the-face, mouth-wide-open wail. It will be even worse if I pick you up; you will scream so loud your little voice disappears and your body straightens out like a little log! I hate it, but you have to be OK with being by yourself sometimes. For as much as you hate napping, you are an excellent nighttime sleeper, averaging five to six hours between waking up. Your schedule is almost like clockwork between 3:30 and 4:30 and then again around 6 a.m. I nurse you and you are swiftly asleep, and boy, you can sleep late! We snooze in together sometimes until 8:30 or so in the morning, though Daddy wakes us up to kiss us goodbye when he leaves for work.

Shepherd, I think you’re a big man disguised in a baby boy’s body. You have so many animated, serious expressions that you make me laugh. Sometimes I can’t help but think that you are my best friend; we spend so much time together that I feel like I know you like no one else ever will. I have loved seeing your development progress to the point where you know who I am and smile for me; it makes me feel love I didn’t know existed from the bottom of my toes to the top of my head. I am filled with love for you, and a protectiveness I didn’t know existed.

Neat things we did this month:

  • Your first Good Friday and Easter services. I was especially emotional during these services, thinking about how Jesus’ mama must have felt seeing her baby literally go through Hell; it became powerful to me in a new way that I will forever appreciate. I want you to always know how much more Jesus loves you, even more than we ever could, and that is a whole, whole lot. Inconceivably more.
  • You and Daddy watched the Masters tournament, the first of many you will watch in your life! Bubba Watson won this year.
  • Your first airplane ride and trip out of state to Texas, to see Birdie, Poppy, and Aunt Jilly. Even though Daddy couldn’t come, we had a fantastic time. I will always cherish the memories we made on this trip, and I was so happy we could go see Aunt Jilly’s home at college in College Station.

I love you so much, sweet pea. You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. 2 Timothy 2:1


At Two Months:

Height: 24.5 inches (>97th percentile)
Weight: 12 pounds, 15 ounces (80th percentile)
Head circumference: 39.6 cm (75th percentile)
You are wearing size 0-3 month clothes, and they are almost too small.
You are wearing size one diapers.
You have gray eyes with hints of green. Sometimes they look blue.
Some nicknames we have for you this month:
Sheppy Giuseppe
Shepì Pepì (Only Daddy calls you this one)
Bug/Buggy/Goose/Goosey (Only Mama calls you these)
Sheppy Pie
Baby Guy/Baby Head
Grump Ears/Monk Ears/Stink Ears (all variations of monkey, which we first called you when you were very little and wore an outfit with a monkey hat)
Snoozy Guy

I am writing letters and taking photos of Shepherd on (or near) the 20th of every month.  

Shepherd :: One Month

My sweet angel boy,
We are so happy you are here. The past month with you has been more than I imagined in so many ways, and knowing you actually get to stay with us makes my heart swell. I want you to know how much love you received in your first month on this earth from so many people. Your family made thousand-mile trips to see you (some of them twice!), you received so many letters and cards and gifts from friends and family and those who love you (mama still hasn’t finished those thank yous, though!) and spending all my days with you has brought out a consuming love that I couldn’t have predicted.

Every time you wake up from a nap I’m reminded that you’ve grown a little. Your eyes are open so often now, and they remind me that everything you see and hear and touch and experience is molding and shaping the little boy and man you will become. I hope you see, hear and feel the palpable love that surrounds you. You were born with long, dark hair on the back of your head and not much on the top, just like your daddy had when he was born. In this first month, we have watched your hairline get darker as you went from our little old Benjamin Button baby to having fuller features. Around three weeks we went from using newborn diapers to size ones, which mama had a hard time with. Just like when we tried your newborn zippies on and your toes curled up because the feet were too small and we couldn’t get the neck past your shoulders. You are growing into such a strong baby boy.

I am thankful for our days together. I lie you on the floor on your tummy for a few minutes a day, and you lift up your head like such a strong baby. Things so mundane now make your mama and daddy incredibly proud of you. Your slate gray eyes gaze at me, and I feel at once as if I’ve known you a thousand years and we are meeting for the first time.

I have heard people say that the newborn phase is boring because all you do is sleep and eat. It’s true, your activities are limited, but I am absolutely in love with every moment you are here. I love that you are so close to me now, and I know that one day, maybe soon, you will need me less. I will be proud for you when that time comes, but until then, I want you to stay close and small in my arms for as long as you want to be.

We are amazed at how much you love to be taken on outings. You have fallen asleep in your car seat each time we’ve ventured out to dinner, to church, shopping or to run a quick errand. We love that, for now, you are a perfect little traveling companion. You belong in our family!

Last weekend, right before you were three weeks old, someone at a store asked me if you were eight or nine weeks old. I couldn’t believe she thought you were so old! You have long legs and arms and a tiny little belly.

You are the light of my world, little one. I am so thankful for your first month here, and I can’t wait to see what next month will bring us. I am so thankful that Jesus let us have you!

Neat things you did this month: Met your Birdie, Poppie, Nana, Papa, Aunt Shannon, Aunt Tiffany, cousin Imogen and Aunt Jilly in person. You also met your Uncle TJ and Aunt Tiffany over Skype. You had visitors three out of your first four weeks! We were so busy. Your first outing was to Free Pancake Night at IHOP (ha!) at almost two weeks. Your second was to Target the next day. Mama didn’t know how to take the car seat out of the car, so Daddy had to show her.


At one month:
Height: 24 inches (97th percentile)
Weight: 11 pounds, 11 ounces (90th percentile)
Wore size newborn clothes for two to three weeks, now in size 0-3 months.
Wore size newborn diapers for two and a half weeks, now in size ones.
Your eyes change from dark blue to steel gray.

Baby Guy

Sheppy Giuseppe
Shepì Pepì (Only Daddy calls you this one)

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

Sometimes I forget that he is not the only one who is learning to rest in loving arms.