Tales from the Hill's Country

Quips, stories and observations from our adventures in marriage and parenting (as told by Katie).

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

My Little Butterball

Bradley had two adorable outfits this Thanksgiving (yes, I'm behind on my blogging):

The first I made with simple iron-on fusible fabric:
Shake those tail feathers, Bradley!
Bradley wore this outfit to his first Thanksgiving Laser Tag outing!
The second outfit Bradley wore on Thanksgiving:
I broke out the monogram machine for the shirt (which, sadly, was a little big) and the sewing machine for the hat (which I made adjustable so MAYBE he can wear it again next year??)

That's one good looking pilgrim!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Bradley: Month Three

At nearly 4 months, I'm finally writing about Bradley at month three!

These were the easiest photos to take so far. Bradley is better at "sitting" (being propped up against the chair) and much more willing to smile than in months past.

Our schedule has gone out the window. Just as I thought we were in a bit of a routine... he changed it up on us! But he's getting more efficient with his nighttime feeding so that's helped us all get a bit more sleep.

Bradley had his first road trip during month three-- to Baton Rouge to celebrate Maria's first birthday! He did great and slept three hours (of the four hour drive) both ways! He also started stroller aerobics with mama... and had his first experience at the polls while mama voted! He was also baptized at our church-- it was a big month for little Bradley!

He's hit the 10lb mark and is continuing to grow. Still in size 1 diapers and 0-6 months clothes. (He easily fits into some newborn clothes, yet some are too tight. Some three month clothes are perfectly, others are falling off of him!)

I'd still describe Bradley has happy, fairly easy-going (as long has he's not tired or hungry) and still loves to smile! He also loves to coo-- especially with mom, dad and mimi. He's also very observant and we often catch him seriously studying the world around him.

Friday, November 9, 2012

The Morning with Dad

The Saturday before Halloween, Chris and Bradley hung out all morning.

They fixed a table together:
Bradley helped with the paintbrush:
Here's a close-up (to be used for my "parenting responsibly" slideshow):
The shirt says "I'm Batty for Daddy" and yes, Chris chose the outfit for their morning of fun.

After the intense carpentry, my two boys hung out outside:
And it looks like they had a nice conversation:
This mama is looking forward to many more daddy/son early mornings!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Cousins at the Pumpkin Patch

After our two days of Pumpkin Patch Photo Taking, you would think Bradley would have the process down.

So we had high hopes when we took him and his Baton Rouge cousins to the Pumpkin Patch in Louisiana. Instead of his signature grin, however, Bradley used the time to practice his pout:
And that quickly turned into this:

Lucy saw Bradley's shenanigans and decided to up the ante:
 We finally got all three cousins together and somewhat happy... when Maria decided Bradley should be hat-free:
Bradley was clearly unhappy about that!

Here's the best of the day:

Then we took some with the moms:
Bradley finally decided that his cries were getting him nowhere (and were apparently exhausting) and took the path of least resistance.

I even wrangled Chris into a photo!
Don't worry, son, we're done with Pumpkin Patches for the year! (Christmas photos, however, are just around the corner!)

Monday, November 5, 2012

Bradley and Papa T

At first, Bradley didn't seem to like the advice my dad was giving him:
But after a little reassurance,

he was ready to soak in the wisdom:
Listen up, Bradley and you'll learn MANY skills. Like how to sail, captain a boat, make wine, wire a house and negotiate a phone bill!

Friday, November 2, 2012


On Wednesday, Bradley celebrated his first Halloween!

He started the evening off as a Sweet Pea:
And trick-or-treated at my parent's house:
You can see he's holding his candy-- a tootsie roll.

Then he had a costume change (of course my child would rock TWO outfits on Halloween):
 As a Banana, Bradley went to my Bible Study's Halloween party and enjoyed a Snickers:
And my favorite "melt my heart" photo of the night?
Just keep your eyes on Mama, sweetheart... that way you won't notice when I dip into the candy bowl!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Maria reintroduces herself

Bradley briefly met his cousin, Maria, the day he was born. But she recently came back to Houston for a visit (with her parents) and got to reintroduce herself.

At first she wasn't too sure about him:
But once she got closer she remembered her new playmate!
I have a feeling these two are going to have some fun times!
(That's Maria's "it wasn't me" face.) We might need to keep a close eye on that one...

Monday, October 29, 2012

Bradley at the Pumpkin Patch

Tis the season for city parents to take their children to the "pumpkin patch". We all just try to ignore the fact that the "patch" is a parking lot with pallets of pumpkins lined up...

Here's the best shot from day one (yes, I insisted that we go a second day):
And here's how day one ended:
Bradley, if you're going to be so dang cute, you need to learn to enjoy taking photos.

(Fun fact: Bradley is wearing his going home outfit here-- Chris used to wear it when he was a baby!)

Here's the best from day two:
Although this is a fun one too:
And although the day didn't end in tears, Bradley certainly let me know he was over it:
I have a feeling this isn't the last time I'm going to see an eye-roll from my son. I thought I had at least 13 more years before that started!!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Old and Young

This is a photo of the oldest and youngest members of my family:
Bradley was less than a month old when this was taken and my grandpa was nearly 1176 months old. Two good looking fellows!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Sleeping the Days Away

I wrote this post during Bradley's first month (while Chris was on paternity leave), but much it still pretty much applies!

With photos like these, you'd think all we're doing at the Hill House is sleeping!

However, the fact is that this is so rare, it becomes picture-worthy:
Many mornings, I wake up to find Chris and Bradley like this:
And one morning Chris brought Bradley into our room to wake me up... a plan which promptly backfired:
We don't get all eight hours at one time, but we're grabbing those zzzz's a few naps at a time!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Bradley: Month Two

Bradley is two months old!

He started smiling at 5 weeks, 6 days and hasn't stopped! He especially loves to smile in the mornings. He has a coy grin (as seen above), but also a full on open-mouth smile when he's really excited about something. I love it!

Even with his numerous smiles, we still seem to have a serious baby on our hands. He's always observing the world and frequently furrows his brow:

In general he loves his serious poses!
And, yes, he is a baby... so there's some of this as well!
We're still working on a daytime schedule, but at night we are settling into a pretty good routine (started at 7 weeks). Bradley gets really fussy around 7pm or 8pm. At that point he's swaddled and eats, then goes to sleep in his crib. We don't see him again until 2am! That's great! Then he's usually up to eat again at 3:30, 5 and 7am. So that's a little annoying. I'd love to drop that 3:30 or 5am feeding!! But I won't complain. The 6 hours we get at the beginning of the night is wonderful!

Bradley's gradated to size 1 diapers and 0-3 month clothes (in Ralph Lauren he can wear up to 6months!). At last check he was 9lbs 12oz so we are VERY close to that 10lb mark! And he's grown to 22.25" long (that means only 17.75 inches to go until he can ride Space Mountain!). He's on the lower percentiles of things, but growing steadily, so we're happy!

He's back to liking the sound app on our iPhones, and still loves to be bounced and swaddled. My favorite time is still the mornings. Once I unswaddle him, he immediatly throws his arms up in the air and smiles. He loves to smile for Chris and I in the mornings especially (but really, as long as he's not hungry, he smiles a lot of the day!).

He doesn't like being hungry or being in the car when it's stopped. We'll be cruising along with no problem, but as soon as we hit a red light, it's fussy-faced Bradley! We're also noticing he gets cranky when he's tired. Which describes me as well.

Sleep is getting a little easier and in general he's getting more predictable. Life is good and we've LOVED learning more about our son during Month Two!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Advice for New Moms

"The first year goes by SO fast. It's important to enjoy every moment."

If I hear that one more time, someone's getting a crying baby thrown at them.

That photo does not depict enjoyment. And the time he cried all night long?? Well that didn't seem to go by very fast.

My advice to new moms is to simply survive.

Don't do anything that you don't have to (including entertaining guests who stop by or laundry). 

Use paper plates. All mothers understand how hard the first few months are, even Mother Earth-- she'll forgive you.

Utilize online ordering. There are days where leaving the house just isn't an option-- pay a little more to get those groceries delivered.

Use the mantra, "this won't last forever". Which I repeated to myself for two days straight during Bradley's last growth spurt (when he wanted to eat EVERY HOUR.)

And don't feel bad if you don't enjoy every moment. Does this really look enjoyable??
This doesn't mean that I don't enjoy many moments. In fact, I enjoy MOST moments.
But not everything is cute and cuddly in a house with a newborn. Maybe in a year I'll forget the late nights and I'll corner young moms in the grocery store and order them to love and cherish every SECOND with their little one. But hopefully I'll remember that not every moment is meant to be enjoyed. And maybe I'll just tell that new mom to enjoy the good times and survive through the rough times. It's not always easy, but "this too shall pass" (which Chris says is just a nice way to say, "suck it up!").

And thank God he designed them to be so cute, it helps when all you want is 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep!