Monthly Archives: December 2013

Wehadababy Itsaboy [What’s In A Name]

Last Wednesday we welcomed our sweet Cohen man into the world. He was born screaming and flexing his arms like the Hulk but quickly settled down as all the nurses swooned over him and his awesome faux hawk hair.

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It was my third c-section so I knew what to expect, though I will say each time I’ve had one I lay on the table thinking, “Why would anyone choose to have their baby this way!?” I’m pretty sure I also think “I do not want to do this again any time soon” but I guess that thought passes as quickly as you forget the bad things about pregnancy. I felt myself come to terms with having to have a c-section this time. In the past, I’ve felt sort of ashamed at not being able to have babies “naturally”. But now I’m trying to view it as something that connects me to my grandmother, and after someone passes those connections (however crazy) become more intimate. So, I’m accepting my unfortunately shaped (inherited) pelvis and the challenges it presents both in and out of pregnancy. I mean everybody’s got something, right!?

[Look at this adorable little collage Chuck made. When we had Lucy, I think it made Chuck crazy when everyone would ask, “Who does she look like?” “A baby” he would say, “She looks like a baby.” So I think he’s really come around. And I think Cohen and Lucy look a lot alike. Feel free to weigh in using the comments section. :)]

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But that’s enough about me; let’s talk about the baby!

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Name: Cohen Harvey Baker
Born: December 11, 2013 at 12:37 p.m.
Weighing in: 6 lbs 11 oz
Measuring in: 19.5 in

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“Where’d you come up with that name?”

We prayed a lot about his name before he was born. With all of our kiddos we’ve wanted them to have names that meant something. When I was pregnant with Lucy, Chuck and I both lost our grandmothers. So her name, Lucy Annabelle, links her to two women who were full of strength, grace, and love for their families. Better still it means, “Light and gracious beauty”. And she is.

Our sweet Landon joined our family at a time of renewed strength and thanksgiving. In short, when Lucy was *just* 11 months old, Chuck noticed some swelling in his toes. The more we explored why his toes were swelling, the more the swelling spread. Soon he had what doctors affectionately referred to as “sausage digits” and we found ourselves seeing a variety of specialists to rule out things like bone cancer. Eventually we landed in the office of a rheumatologist with a diagnosis of psoriatic arthritis. Because it was spreading so aggressively, they needed to put Chuck on a variety of anti-inflammatory medications. They asked us if we planned on conceiving another child within the next three years (the amount of time they initially thought it would take to get him back to a semblance of normal [i.e. no sausage digits]). In a matter of weeks we went from worrying about the future of Chuck’s health to wondering about the future of our family. So standing in the doctors’ office, we were given four weeks to try to conceive. And that’s the short version of how our family was blessed with Landon. [And maybe some other time I’ll tell you how Chuck went from taking 11 pills a day to 0 through a change to a whole foods diet.] When it came to his name, Landon Jude, meaning “on the hill of praise”, couldn’t have been more perfect. We have much to be grateful for.

Cohen’s entrance and name came with a bit less drama [thankfully]. No drama. Like we were sitting on the couch one night watching tv and I said, “What do you think about the name Cohen Harvey?” and Chuck said, “I love it. If it’s a boy that’s his name and you’re not allowed to change it.” His name, Cohen Harvey, means “priestly warrior”. It was in fact the only name we considered, and we think God has big things planned for this little guy.

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Though he may not stay little for long if he keeps up the regimen he’s on. At his one week appointment he was already an ounce over his birthweight and 20 inches [though I’m assuming they just mis-measured him at the hospital when he was Hulk-ing out and uninterested in stretching out.

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I have to say, I’m a big fan of the little guy. So far he’s fitting into the fabric of our family pretty seamlessly. The kiddos love him but Lucy wants to know when he’ll start sleeping less [it confuses her that anyone would want to waste time sleeping] and Landon is a little jealous of all the cuddles he thinks Cohen gets while feeding. Mama is a little sleepy and a little tired from all the feedings but happy [and VERY grateful for two weeks of Christmas break and an extra set of hands!].

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Recovery has been a bit of a rollercoaster; isn’t it always? Surgery recovery was quicker than in the past and I was feeling super great… and then I got some kind of sinus thing complete with body aches and chills. Yuck. So hopefully we’re on the road to mending – again!

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Lucy’s 4th Birthday!

My daughter is a fan of birthdays. Like, she’s been planning her party for 364 or so days. Last year’s Minnie Mouse party was such a hit, she had big plans. She’s to that super fun age where you can ask, “What kind of birthday party do you want?” and really have no idea what answer will come.

So when I asked this year, her answer was, “An Angelina Ballerina dance party with gymnastics wands.” And what would you like to eat? “Doughnuts and hot chocolate.” Done and done.

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I made her invitation on my iPad using the “A Beautiful Mess” app. I basically just grabbed an image from a google image search, erased the text, and added my own.

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So I have to say, having a Mimi around to help with party prep changed it from “Oh my gosh I’m stressed out and have so much to do and no time to do it.” to “Oh my gosh I’m days away from giving birth to my third child and yet somehow am totally pulling this off and not at all stressed out.” I’m pretty sure there’s a proverb about a good Mimi being worth more than silver or gold.

The morning of the party we mixed up the basic donut recipe from the babycakes nyc classics cookbook. I had great success putting the batter into a ziploc bag and squeezing it into a mini doughnut maker. We did half with a cinnamon sugar [shaking them in a brown paper bag] and half of them with melted chocolate [with a little coconut oil mixed in] in a double boiler. To have “normal” looking gluten-free, vegan baked goods kind of makes me feel like a magician.

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Am I the only one that loves a good tablescape? My mom and I ran out in freezing weather at 6 a.m. to grab doughnuts from my favorite doughnut shop for the rest of the party-goers. I put some doughnut holes in little paper cups and the rest were sorted by flavor onto white platters. I also mixed up some of this hot cocoa using 1/2 cup coconut cream instead of the soy creamer [which is definitely our new favorite].

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I made Lucy’s birthday banner for her 1st birthday and it’s hung up at every party since. And I didn’t even use Pinterest. Was that even an option four years ago?

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Here’s our hot chocolate bar. We had some marshmallow bits mixed with cinnnamon and sugar, some mini marshmallows, some candy canes, and some mini chocolate chips. I also dipped some larger marshmallows in melted chocolate [and dipped about half of them in crushed up candy canes as well].

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We used mod podge to glue some doilies we folded in half onto the pink cups to be a bit like cup cozies. And Mimi found those amazing [and much requested] princess wands at Michaels. Speaking of Mimi-wins, she made a special trip to get that sparkler candle from a particular Publix after I scoured the internet with no luck.

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Princess Angelina Ballerina birthday girl ready to party! She looks a bit apprehensive because Landon’s trying to get in her shot.

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Speaking of Landon, he’s the sheriff of this party. [Oh my gosh I love that face!]

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