Since Juliet turned one over two weeks ago she's been sick. As I noted already, she had RSV, a dangerous virus for babies. So, in hopes of getting her well again we've been hunkered down at home.
And if you know anything about me, I really hate to be home day after day.
Nights have been terrible. Naps have been horrific. And finally when I think she's turning a corner, finally getting better, she gets bad again. Last night she was coughing, so violently I thought she'd vomit. For hours and hours and hours she coughed.
I tried to make her comfortable.
It was horrible.
I was up the majority of the night with a very sick baby girl. And I've been up many nights this month for hours on end.
I'm tired of feeling tired. I'm tired of seeing my baby girl so sick. I'm tired of feeling cooped up with two cranky kids. What I'm trying to say is that I'm just tired. I am very much looking forward to getting my sweet girl healthy and for spring to finally peek her head into this very cold winter that's been full of being sick.
Juliet's a baby model. That is so weird for me to say.
Awhile ago, when my mom worked at Naartjie (a children's clothing company) she passed some of Juliet's photos onto her boss. Her boss thought she was adorable and wanted her to model for their spring line.
E and I himed and hawed. We were not sure that we wanted Juliet modeling. But after two months of thinking about it, we finally decided that she could go in for one shoot, and model two outfits.
So one very snowy morning a month ago I packed up both kids and headed downtown early in the morning. We arrived, changed her into darling spring outfits and then she got to work. ;)
The entire shoot took less than fifteen minutes, and she earned her first $50.
On Valentine's Day her photos premiered online and in stores throughout the world.
She was even featured in a little video they put together of the shoot. Juliet is on minute 0:39 and 2:04.
While we were honored with a call back for the next line, we decided to decline. We agree that Juliet is a beautiful baby, but she's just a baby. Modeling doesn't need to be added to her resume along with "waking up at night, picky eating, and crying if James splashes."
One day though, she'll be able to tell friends that she was a baby model. And hopefully even then, she will still feel beautiful.
Last week we didn't go anywhere. Well we did go to the grocery store to get baby ibuprofen, and Bed Bath and Beyond for a humidifier, but other than that, we stayed home. Luckily we had a couple of milder days where James could go outside and dig while I stayed inside with Juliet.
One evening, after five pm the light looked so beautiful on our front porch I knew I had to grab my camera and capture what James does best. Dig. He has 15-20 vehicles out there at any one time. He works in the sand or on the little ledge near the window. Sometimes he even ventures into the snow.
And all the while, Juliet watches with utter fascination as James does what he does best. Dig dig dig.
*Today Juliet finally turned a corner. She's finally getting better. After nine days of the sickest I've ever seen her she actually laughed today!
Finally, after nearly a week, I have some time to blog. Juliet is feeling better. She'll kick this virus soon enough.
So, back to party photos that never got posted. My sister arrived early and helped keep the kids happy while E and I finished last minute details. Juliet will one day ADORE Auntie Sissa, right now she looks like she's saying "why is my Mama not holding me?!"
We invited family from both sides and the house was packed.
I don't think I've mentioned on my blog yet that my sister-in-law is pregnant. Isn't she glowing? She's due at the end of April. We are all so excited, it will be James's and Juliet's first cousin!
Juliet has never taken a bottle in her life but loved the play bottles Damma brought for her baby doll.
E's grandparents were unable to attend, but sent an amazing homemade quilt. Bonnie (E's grandmother) never had a daughter, instead three sons. Fifty years ago she made this quilt for a one-day daughter that never came. It's been in storage all these years until now, when she passed it down to Juliet.
Soon enough presents were opened and the food was devoured. It was time for the pinnacle of all first birthday parties! Birthday cake. I changed Juliet from her adorable snuggle bunny outfit into an old onsie that was headed to the garbage. This photo was taken right after singing and letting James blow out the candle. She looks a little unsure, doesn't she?
"It's ok sweet gurl, it's good!" James shows her.
Still a little unsure.
But not unsure for long.
This was her first real taste of sugar. I think she was in complete awe.
By the time she was done there was nothing left. Just a gooey happy baby.
I was so excited for Valentine's this year. FOURTEEN YEARS with E on the 14th! It am so lucky! Such a long time! So exciting! I had outfits planed for the kiddos and even a little photo shoot in mind.
But alas, life happens.
E has been traveling a lot for work. Weekly trips since the start of 2013.
Also, since the start of 2013 we've had the stomach flu (which I battled alone, due to another work trip) and a long cold depressing month of January.
February looked brighter.
Then, after Juliet's birthday party on Sunday she got sick. Really sick.
I held off taking her to the doc because I kept thinking it would pass. Today I finally took her in and she has RSV. A very scary virus that can land babies in the hospital. Oh yea, and she has an ear infection too.
She's been up hourly at night and up for the day at four a.m. every day this week. And I've done it alone. Just me.
Today, actually was not all bad. E got home after being gone all week. And having an extra set of hands when trying to put two kids to bed, feed two kids dinner, and bathe two kids is so wonderful. Especially when one kid feels like hell.
We are still in the thick of it. Juliet is doing ok, no hospitalization, and sleeping in somewhat long chunks at night.
But I'm really excited for this week to be over and to have my bunny back to her happy easy self.
Hey look, at least she's in pink pjs. She looks pretty miserable here doesn't she. She was.
She's so beautiful she takes my breath away on a regular basis. She is also so so sick. Flu? Croup? Something else? She has a runny nose and a cough that keeps her up all night long (when she coughs she cries, and oh my it just breaks your heart). She also has a fever so hot that it could roast marshmallows. She is so hot that I make sure to keep up with her ibuprofen doses. Thank god for ibuprofen, and the fact that it cools her right down.
So, just a hiatus, before posting the end of her birthday party photos. After two nights of being up for hours with a sick baby, and having had E out of town, I'm tired...
On Saturday morning we celebrated the birthday girl. We made homemade bunny pancakes, and last minute decided to add a little almond extract to the batter. Best decision ever.
Then we opened gifts. We decided to get Juliet a Twilight Turtle (actually she got the ladybug) and knew it would be a big hit with James, so got him one as well. Juliet also got a special baby doll, some books, a cute little camera, and darling soft blocks from Daddy. Each block has a different bell inside and makes a different jingle.
Such a bittersweet morning. Saying hello to being one is also saying goodbye to babyhood, in a way. My sweet bunny is growing up.
Juliet wondering why'd she'd eat one of her own kind. ;) The bunny pancakes were actually a huge hit and both James and Juliet could not get enough.
Big pile of presents!
She's pretty thrilled.
Being three, James was the master at opening all presents. He took care of each one for Juliet. Juliet looks thrilled with the arrangement, doesn't she?
And her sweet baby doll. I bought this baby months ago and it's been tucked away waiting for Juliet's first birthday. I knew I wanted a Corolle doll, since I also grew up with Corolle and they are still as beautiful as the day I received them. This one has brown eyes just like my girl.
The moment I found out I was pregnant, due in early February, I started dreaming about a Valentine themed first birthday. Then when I found out I was expecting a girl, visions of pink, hearts and all thing love would not leave my mind. I've been planning this birthday in my head for Juliet's entire first year, as well as the 9 months I was pregnant.
But upon meeting my daughter I realized that a Valentine's party would not be enough. She needed a bunny party. So I himed and hawed over Valentines vs. Bunnies for two months. Then I decided to combine them.
Welcome to Juliet's Snuggle Bunny Valentine's first birthday.
On the invite I asked everyone to wear either red or pink. This made photos so fun and unified, but also, how adorable is my family?!
I was thrilled with how this little birthday cake turned out for the birthday girl. I baked it in a tin can and it was just her size.
The food included cheese and crackers, a big fruit salad and of course veggies (aka bunny food). This was a bunny party after all.
As an Easter baby myself, I've had my fair share of bunny parties. Each year my mom would use a bunny cake tin to bake my bunny cake. I now have her tin, and baked the perfect bunny cake for our guests (and guess what? The bunny cake was also James's first birthday cake!)
The house was decorated from top to bottom in pink and red and bunnies.
I have lots and lots of bunnies in my collection.
Raspberry lemonade with pink poke a dot straws stole the show.
I printed out all of Juliet's monthly photos and taped them to the windows with Valentine's washi tape.
Petter Rabbit sending a Valentine.
We had tea, and hot chocolate and coffee too. Nothing could be better on a very cold and snowy Sunday.
The fruit salad was amazing.
Bunny kisses of course.
My favorite, the tiny itty bitty cake. With one pink candle.
James could not keep his hands out of the fruit. Kiwi thief.
Party photos to come! And Juliet eating her birthday cake! Such a wonderful day.
*Bunny illustration on the invite was found on Pinterest and I can not for the life of me find the original to credit. Find it, send it my way!