Two months old!

Look who’s wide awake! It’s two month old Emery! 😜 I used to call him my little firecracker when I was pregnant, and that’s definitely what he is. To be honest, I was a little puzzled about how calm he was in the beginning, because it didn’t match the impression I had of him before he was born lol Now that he’s becoming more alert and more active throughout the day, his overall energy matches exactly how I had pictured him all along. 😊

I’ve been trying so hard to take a picture of him smiling for the past two weeks, but still no luck. He smiles and laughs so often! I just cannot seem to snap it. As soon as I pull out the camera, he stops and stares all intrigued at the lens. Haha!

And here are finally some pictures of the “sugar beans” treats I crafted right after he was born. I mentioned them last month in my “birth announcement card” post.

I basically stuck to the same Summery / honey bee theme I had going on with his birth announcement. And here it is, next to Sam’s white and blue one; which we never got to give to people:

I don’t know why, I love seeing them right next to each other like that. I think it’s because those are the only two items I can look at together, and forget for a second that the little boy to whom the blue jar belongs isn’t here. For a split second, I feel like both my babies made it alive and well, and got to be celebrated equally, as all babies deserve to be.

This brings me to this very special gift I received last month:

This mobile is packed with symbols and special meanings to me. It is a perfect replica of all the symbols that were featured on Emery’s birth announcement card. The sun, the cloud, the bee and the firefly. And most importantly, in the center, a beautiful blue star with Sam’s initial on it. 💕 I absolutely wanted this to become part of Emery’s daily life, so I took a few days to figure out where I wanted to hang it, and I ended up putting it right above his changing table. I had noticed a while ago that he enjoyed looking up at the hair brush and random things that were hanging above him on the wall, so it seemed like the perfect thing to keep him entertained during those countless diaper changes every day and night. I’m glad to report that it works like a charm! He LOVES it! He stares at it every single time, smiles at it, tries to reach out to touch it … It’s so fun for me to see. Obviously, I put it high enough so he can’t reach it. I would be devastated if it ever got damaged. This is definitely something I will keep for the rest of my life.

There are so many other beautiful gifts we have received. And I’m planning to include them in Emery’s updates, little by little. But I will end today’s update here, as I don’t want to flood the blog with baby items. More later! 😊

Enjoying the last few days of Summer

We’re finally taking a small break here and enjoying the sun after all our hard work around the house. We always have several home improvement projects on our to-do list each Summer, because -1- the weather generally allows us to do the dirtiest part outside, and -2- it’s always nice to enjoy our home all up to date during those long dark Winter days. This year’s list included a bunch of paint work. The main one ended up being the garden shed. It was originally in its natural pine wood color; which is all nice and pretty when its new, but tends to age poorly (in my oppinion anyway). So I chose pale beige paint, as well as plain white for the trimming.

I LOVE the result! I used to never include the garden shed in our yard pictures, but now I think it actually makes for a nice background. I’m sure there’s a “before” picture posted somewhere on the blog about a year or two ago. I just can’t be bothered to include any in this post, because I never liked the way it looked lol

We’re pretty dead tired now. I honestly don’t understand why we had planned so much work for this Summer when we knew there was going to be a newborn baby in the mix. And then we actually stuck to our plans and finished it all … Hah! Crazy. But at least it’s all done now and we’re pleased with how everything looks, so I guess it was worth it! 😊

One month old!

Wow, it “only” took me a week to put this blog post together. lol Time flies when you’re having fun! Or rather: when you’re so busy and exhausted that you can’t even find a spare hour to upload photos and type a quick update.

So, Emery turned one month old last week. He’s definitely grown a ton already.

I absolutely wanted to start taking a monthly picture so we would have a lovely 12 piece collection by the time he turns one year old. It’s going to be so interesting to put them all together and compare them next year. It turned out to be quite a challenge though. First, I had to find the right moment. Then I had to get Wolf out of the way!

And then I had to carefully remove the pacifier from his mouth – so we could actually see his face – while trying to avoid a diplomatic incident …

In the end, I think they look a bit shitty. But they will have to do. I’m not pleased about the colors and the light, but oh well. Challenge completed!

It turns out we have a bit of a pacifier addict in the house. I wasn’t too keen on introducing this to him, but he never waited long enough between his feedings and this is the only thing that seems to do the trick. We have slowly managed to decrease the number of feedings while increasing the amount of formula per feeding, so we are slowly regaining a bit of spare time in between. If we can even call it “spare” time lol

We got this pacifier from Gert’s brother a while ago. I never thought we’d end up using it, but alas, “papa is the best” is now plastered on Emery’s face.

Gert suggested we get a second one that says “mama is quite alright”. 😂

Okay, that’s about it for now. There are so many other things I had planned to take pictures of and add to this post. But I’m afraid they will have to be spread over several future blog posts, little by little. I can’t wait. 😊

How did July go by so quickly?

I can’t believe it’s almost the end of July! This month went by in a flash, yet it has felt like a never ending juggle between diapers and bottles. Things started getting insane this past weekend when Emery suddenly started crying for milk nonstop. We were up to 12 bottles a day at one point. I have to admit I wasn’t feeling so fantastic then. It turns out he just experienced his very first growth spurt, which is to be expected about 3 weeks after birth, apparently (or so I was told). Things seem to have calmed down as of today … hence my ability to finally update my blog now. The next growth spurt will probably happen around 6 weeks. Not looking forward to it! 🙈

Thank God Gert has been of such massive help. We split all the tasks and roughly worked out our “shifts” in terms of feedings and diaper changes. Let’s just say I’m glad he doesn’t mind getting up at night so I can get my full night sleep and take over things in the morning, because getting up in the middle of the night does pretty terrible things to my mood, as we have recently found out. lol

Nevertheless, we did manage to enjoy the beautiful Summer weather and use our handy little barbecue the other day. This was our very first lunch out on our patio since Emery was born. It was too hot for him, so we left him inside while he was sleeping.

And this introduced a brand new accessory to the table … a baby monitor! Granted, this one is ancient and was handed down to us by Gert’s brother. But it still works perfectly and came in super handy in this particular situation.

Emery just turned three weeks old. Next week he’ll be one month old! I’m so excited to be able to celebrate fun milestones now for a change. Despite the fact that they will always be a little bittersweet, with Sam being in the back of our minds at all times. It hit me yesterday that Emery’s now about Sam’s size and weight, and how weird it’s going to be when he outgrows his big brother soon and that we get to hold a baby bigger than Sam will ever be. Because so far, with Emery being the younger brother and actually being smaller too, it still felt like everything was in the right order, so to speak. I try not to dwell on these things too much, but they still cross my mind no matter what.

On a funner note: I noticed something new in his behavior this week. He now stares A LOT at me when I’m holding him and reaches out with his arms and tries to touch my face. It’s pretty funny! Sometimes he makes faces like he’s trying to decipher what I’m saying to him.

To finish this weekly update, here are a few more pictures taken these past few days.

Emery’s birth announcement card

birth announcement

Most people to whom we’ve mailed Emery’s birth announcement card have probably received it by now, so here it is … My little sunshine themed card. I designed it myself from scratch and basically poured my heart into every little detail. At first, we thought about going to a specialized business to have this done. But then I didn’t feel like anyone would be able to nail it completely; considering how personal and emotional it all is. I absolutely wanted Sam to be mentioned in some way.

rainbow baby boy birth announcement card

I knew from the start I wanted a Summer / sunshine theme, because that’s the season Emery was going to arrive. But then the more I thought about it, the more I realized it was a lovely symbol after those dark few years we’ve been through. I started working on the design somewhere around the fifth month of my pregnancy, after we found out we were going to have a little boy again. Finally, the last few details were in place just a few days before he was born. All I needed before I could order the prints was his actual date of birth, his weight and size, and I had been thinking about adding a picture of him but wasn’t quite sure yet how that was going to work out. In the end, I did manage to get some lovely newborn photos of him in the outfit which I had hoped would be the right size, and everything came together quite nicely.

I may have gone a bit cheesy with the Beatles lyrics on the back, but I had had this song in my head during my whole pregnancy and it just felt so right and appropriate. I’m sure some people found it a bit too much or what have you. But I don’t care, it meant a lot to me and I really wanted it on there! ☀️

Originally, this outfit was actually meant for Sam. I bought it in August 2014; about 4 weeks or so before he died. Sam turned out to be a solid little man, and I remember it broke my heart to think that there was no way he would have fitted in it. Emery ended up being quite a bit smaller (granted, he was born earlier), and it kind of weirds me out now how it all fell into place to match perfectly.

I’ve been munching on these sugary treats for a few days now as I’m busy putting together this typical Belgian tradition: sugar coated chocolates – which literally translate to “sugar beans” – and which are meant to be wrapped up nicely in small portions and labeled with some sort of tag that mentions the newborn’s name and date of birth. They’re meant as little gifts for whoever comes to visit the baby, or well, whoever the Hell you feel like handing them out to. It doesn’t really matter. They’re basically a cute little keepsake to mark the baby’s birth. I think these were originally supposed to be handed out at the baby’s christening. But the whole tradition got a little blurry over time. We’ll probably be handing out another type of little gift at Emery’s christening later this year.

Emery’s sugar beans are yellow. These blue ones are Sam’s. I wasn’t quite sure what to do with them at first. They’ve been sitting in the nursery for two years now and just expired a few weeks ago. At first, I thought about throwing them away. But then I couldn’t bring myself to do that. And I have a terribly sweet tooth. Maybe that seems a little messed up, but I decided to open the box and eat them. It’s not like they’re actually bad barely a couple of weeks past their expiration date lol I’ve been thinking about it though and decided that I will keep some blue treats aside and put together one piece of what I had originally planned for Sam, after all. We already had all the supplies, which we had bought just two days before he passed away. It’s still so sad. Once it’s done, I will put his blue sugar beans gift in the big box that contains all his stuff. I like to go through it every once in a while.

Emery’s version will be a lot more elaborate, since I couldn’t wait to FINALLY be able to hand out something cute and fun to people! I can’t wait to show the result.

He’s changing so fast already. I can literally see his face changing a tiny bit every day. Tomorrow, he’ll be exactly two weeks old!