The Haircut

So much impatience in the world these days! Here are the before and after pictures of the haircut. I know they are not the greatest pictures but I was struggling and a couple of them were taken on my phone.

I am getting used to the haircut. People keep telling me that it isn't even short but it feels so much shorter than it was! If I put it in a ponytail, it almost all falls out after a few hours! That could be caused by the toddler I am always wrestling. A few times I have thought that it would look better a little shorter but I don't think I am ready for that. For now, I am keeping it the way it is and I like it. I am still trying to figure out what to do with it but it is so fun to have something different!

Sam loves being able to run his fingers through my hair and I love that it isn't a tangled mess.

A few times recently I have remembered a birthday party I had when I was about 11 years old. As gifts from my friends and family, I received a total of six hair brushes. I still use one of those brushes and my mom uses another one. I laughed when it happened and thought, "Here's your sign, Emily." I have been neglecting my hair for far too long. I am ready to take care of myself!


It's All Gone.

My hair. It's all gone. I just got home two minutes ago from my friend chopping off my hair. I love it. I was worried when I felt it all fall to the ground but so far I am thrilled with it. I think it makes me look younger which probably is not a good thing but my hair feels amazing.

She said she cut off twelve inches. Holy smokes, I am bald!

I will take pictures when Sam gets home. He is going to be in shock when he sees it. He has never known me with anything but ridiculously long hair.

I don't think I have curly hair anymore. All the curls were on the ground and it is wavy now. That will be something to get used to.

This haircut has been a long time coming. I was so nervous but I am really glad I did it.

Thanks, Trina!


Kisses for the men in the TV

Our cable and internet went out Friday morning and they couldn't come fix it until Saturday afternoon. I knew that watching Conference at the church would be a complete failure since we can hardly make it through sacrament meeting without Alex trying to sprint all over the chapel. So we went to the Apple Harvest Festival instead. I could not believe how many people were there. It was insane. There were so many delicious smells in the air and I was most tempted by the pumpkin funnel cake but we didn't eat anything. Sad day. Maybe one day I will get to try pumpkin funnel cake.

During Priesthood Session, Kristen and I talked while Canon and Alex played. They don't really play nicely together anymore. There was a lot of toy stealing going on but at least they seem to have good attitudes about it.

We did get to watch the sessions on Sunday and loved them. I have been watching a few of the Saturday talks online during Alex's naps and I am excited to get the Ensign so I can read the rest of them. It was a very relaxing weekend. We never turn on that TV that is down at Alex's height and so he loved having it on. He was hitting the people on the head, poking them, talking to them, and changing the channel as often as he could get his hands on the remote. My favorite part was when he would walk up the screen and kiss the people on the face. He gives open mouth kisses so our TV was pretty spotted after Conference.



This post might be too much information for some people. So just stop reading. Yes, stop. Right now. Still reading? Okay. You may continue unless you are named Dad, Jared, David, or Adam. This is mostly information I shared with a few friends about three months after Alex was born. I added what I can remember from after that but there isn't as much detail after the first few months. Hopefully this will help someone else.

My mom made me a nursing cover that wraps completely around and drapes over my shoulders. It completely changed the way I felt about breastfeeding in public. I remember nursing Alex in a restaurant when he was a week old and I was so uncomfortable because he could have pulled off the blanket at any time and I would have been exposed. That cover was a miracle. I even walked around Boston nursing him! I have heard of mothers practicing under a blanket at home. That way the baby will get used to being under it and won't try to pull it off as much in public.

Walking around while nursing (pre-nursing cover).

Alex did not have problems with needing to be burped.

Alex wasn't on any sort of schedule until he was about a month old. I still fed him on demand for about five months. Up until three months, I was still feeding him for 20 minutes of good nursing on each side. I felt like I was spending my entire life breastfeeding him. I was still a little scared to go out but then once I got out I realized I could do it. If I sat around waiting until his next feeding was done before I went out to do my errands then I would sit around all day and at the end of the day I will feel bad about myself for not doing anything. So I would just put him in the car and go. I sat in the backseat of my car in many parking lots nursing him. It's definitely a time sacrifice but nursing is worth it. If I waited around for his next feeding before leaving then that will probably be the time he decides he doesn't need to eat for eight hours. Babies know, I swear! They are like schedule ruining machines!

Pumping... Sometimes Alex would sleep for a long time and I start feeling engorged so I would pump then and freeze it. I read in What to Expect the First Year that you are never completely drained. I am not sure if this is right, but I think about it like a cell phone. Sometimes it is good to completely drain the battery (or in this case, the milk). Because Alex cannot drain me as much as the pump. I was really worried one time when Alex woke up right after I finished pumping and he was hungry. I just started him on the side that I had pumped first and he was actually fine. I switched sides after 20 minutes and then he was completely satisfied.

Mostly I have just learned that people understand that you need to feed your baby. And if they don't, then they are immature. I am allowed to breastfeed anywhere I want. I just have to ignore everyone else and pretend like I'm doing something completely normal.

Alex wouldn't latch on when he was born. They gave me something called a nipple shield. I didn't know what it was so I just took it and Alex would nurse using it. At first I was really happy then I learned that it is mostly used for people with inverted nipples (which I don't have). Alex got used to the feeling of the shield and wouldn't nurse without it. I cried for hours every day trying to get him off of the shield. I was so angry with the nurses who gave it to me. Lots of people who use a shield end up losing their milk so I didn't want that to happen and the lactation specialist told me to pump after feeding him. So I was pumping both sides after he ate. Shields also decrease the flow of milk to the baby by about 40%. So sometimes his feedings would last for an hour and a half. It was terrible. Then around three months he decided he could nurse straight on. But in the middle of the night he wasn't as willing to try. He used the shield until about 10 months old. It was not his fault though. I became attached to the nipple shield even though I don't think he needed it anymore. Later on, he liked to just hold it in his hand. Anyway, while trying to get him to nurse without the shield during the first two months, he would arch his back and kick and throw his head back and purse his lips. The "tickling" thing did not work for me at all! I noticed the more that I tried to force his head toward me, the more he would pull away. I just let him wriggle around until he decided he was ready to relax. Also, I would roll him onto his back slightly so he wasn't in the nursing position and then as soon as he calmed down I would turn him back to nurse. If he started arching his back again then I would roll him right back onto his back until he calmed down. I would lie him on the ground on his back and then lean over him. It was so uncomfortable and I only did it for a few minutes until he realized he was getting food. When he was on the ground he couldn't go anywhere to get away. Sounds like torture. Whoops!

Alex can be seen here holding the shield.

Nursing while lying down saved me. I would bring Alex into bed with me and nurse him, switch sides if necessary, then carry him back to his crib while he was still in a milk-drunken slumber. It gave me so many hours of sleep.

Alex got to the point where he hated the cover. It was a disaster to try to nurse under it so I would hope that no one was in the nursing room at church. Nursing eliminated a large portion of my wardrobe. It became necessary to have easy access clothing and some shirts just didn't make the cut. It was a fun reunion with those clothes once I started nursing fewer times in a day.

I think it was around eight months when I started having to nurse Alex in complete silence. If I started talking or if the TV was on, then he would look up and it was so hard to try to get him to latch on again.

I think I only used the boppy a few times. It never seemed to fit me right. I had to hold Alex up or slant my legs to make the positioning right. I do remember a few times when I was sitting at the computer and had him nursing while on the boppy. That only worked until he started getting wiggly though.

I made it through 14 months of nursing without a breast infection. I thought I had one at one point but the doctor said it was just because Alex was getting older and he was becoming an aggressive nurser. I had never noticed Alex hurting me though. He bit once, I flicked him, and he never bit me again.

It got much better eventually. Easier latch combined with fewer feedings made breastfeeding a breeze. I am so excited for the next baby because I know it will be so much easier this time. I am not sure how many people I flashed while trying to figure out how to nurse with a cover, but I like to think that I made a difference for Alex.

I cut down the feedings slowly. At one year, he was still nursing four times a day. Three weeks later, I cut it down to three times a day. He nursed three times a day for two weeks. Then twice a day for two weeks. I kept the morning feeding for two more weeks and then stopped completely.

For the last few months, I noticed that Alex hated nursing on my right side. I couldn't get him to stay on as long and I tried to pump to keep up the milk supply on that side. Eventually, he got to the point where he would freak out if I even attempted to put him on that side. For the last four days of nursing, he would not latch onto the right side at all. So that was how the breastfeeding of Alex experience ended.

I experienced two days of painful engorgement after I stopped breastfeeding. Strangely, only the left side was engorged, which further solidified my thoughts on having already lost the milk on my right side. Sometimes I get sad that I can't nurse Alex anymore. When he wakes up in the morning, I have to actually get up and feed him real food instead of cuddling in bed with him.

I wish I could have nursed him for longer but I could feel the wear on my body. When I was pregnant with Alex, I never got a cold or sore throat once. While I was nursing and pregnant, I got a few colds and woke up with a sore throat once a week.

The moral of the story is that I highly recommend breastfeeding. It is so convenient and it is the best for the baby. Even if formula and breastmilk were equal, I would still breastfeed just for the connection I felt to my child. The connection didn't happen immediately, but after a few weeks of cuddling my baby in the middle of the night and knowing that he needed me and no one else, I truly learned to love breastfeeding.


Pregnancy Q & A

I have been asked a lot of questions since we announced the pregnancy so I am going to try to answer all of the ones I can remember here. Also, vote on the sidebar if you think it will be a boy or girl!

1. Did you just find out? Are you joking? No. When I missed my period in July, we took a pregnancy test and it was negative. I waited a few more days (I am never late on my period) and took another pregnancy test even though I knew by then. I just wanted to take a test and then be able to see it.

2. Have you had morning sickness? Nope. There were a few nights in Allentown where I easily could have thrown up but I talked myself out of it. Just like with Alex, I have not thrown up yet. I am not excited for the gestational diabetes testing though which caused me to have this disaster in Sam's car. I was slightly nauseous between weeks 7-10 which was strange for me because I was not sick at all with Alex.

3. Do you know what you're having? No. They did an ultrasound when I was 14 weeks and 5 days pregnant but they couldn't tell yet. I don't think our next ultrasound will be until 23 weeks.

4. Was this an accident? No. It took us two months of trying. But I have felt ready for another one since Alex was six months old. The first month we tried, we found out the day of Sam's Grandpa's funeral (while at the funeral) that I was not pregnant. I was devastated because I was positive that I would be. I was even dreaming about the baby.

5. Did you record when you found out? Yes. I love the video we have from when we found out we were pregnant with Alex and I wanted to do it again. But this time I was positive I was pregnant (see question one) so I was talking to the camera and it wasn't as cute. Also, Sam was at work. I have a second video from when I showed him the pregnancy test and told him which maybe I will post.

6. How far apart will Alex and this baby be? Assuming Baby Bruce comes around the due date, they will be approximately 20 months apart.

7. Did you just call your child Baby Bruce? Yes. Sam is obsessed with the name Bruce but it will be over my dead body that he names our child Bruce. So the "in utero" name for our child is Baby Bruce. We also called Alex "Baby Bruce." If we find out it is a girl, we will either call her Baby Bruce-ina or Baby Brucette.

8. Was breastfeeding hard? It was more difficult than it had been but I wasn't ready to stop either. Alex still loved it and I loved it. I breastfed Alex until he was 14 months old, which means I was about 15 weeks pregnant. The hardest part was being dehydrated. I felt like I did right after Alex's delivery: so thirsty all the time! I hated feeling like Alex wasn't really getting any milk though. I could feel it going away so that is when I decided to stop.

9. Are you nervous? Not yet but I am sure it will come.

10. Are you just going to keep popping out babies until you're 35? I hope not. The plan is to have Alex and another sibling close to each other so they can be friends then have a little bit longer of a break and then another pair. Then undecided after that. We have always wanted to adopt but we will see.

11. Do you want a boy or a girl? I want a boy because we have all boy clothes and we are so poor. I feel like there will be a time for a girl to come to our family, but right now we can't afford a girl. Also, I think Alex will be closer friends with a boy. Of course, I will be happy with a girl. I mean, I thought I wanted a girl first but now I can't imagine not having Alex.

12. Is it twins? No. I asked the ultrasound tech first thing. *forehead swipe, relieved exhale* There is just one hyperactive baby in there.

13. What do you think you're having? I think we are having a girl. Sam thinks we are having a girl as well. And just now when I typed it, I got a little giddy feeling. A girl would be awesome.

14. Why did you wait so long to announce it? Many reasons. One, people incessantly ask questions about how the pregnancy is going and so it made the first time seem to last forever. I decided to cut out a few weeks of this problem. Two, we wanted to make sure everything was okay with the baby. I am super paranoid and still don't feel completely safe. Three, we wanted to wait until 20 weeks with Alex so we could say, "We are having a boy/girl!" But my brother outed us on Facebook so we were forced to announce it early. So we waited a while on this one, too. Just because that's how we do it. Fourth, it is the second time I've been pregnant. No one is as excited so I just wanted to keep it to myself so I could be very excited without everyone's indifference dampening my mood. Fifth, pseudocyesis. I am self-diagnosed with hypochondriasis and I am almost positive I suffer from pseudocyesis. I didn't truly accept I was pregnant until I saw the ultrasound.

15. Do you have names picked out? We have a long list of girl names. We do not have a single boy name. That was because we only had one boy name before and we used it on Alex. I am sure we will come up with more names though.

16. Does Alex know? By the way he is jumping on my stomach, I will say no. Otherwise he is a very violent big brother.

17. What have been some differences between this pregnancy and the last? I did not have a chicken aversion this time. I have had a hard time being motivated to do anything, especially blogging. Last time I was in school until 25 weeks and my capstone project kept me very occupied. I didn't even have time to think about being lazy. I have been bad about taking pictures of my belly every 5 weeks. Last time I was so excited to feel myself growing. This time, I am already sad about it. I know how unattractive I am when I am pregnant and that is not something that makes me want to get any bigger. For the first blood draw during my first pregnancy, it took 18 pokes to get enough blood. This time, it only took one poke! I am exhausted this pregnancy. If I am at home around 6pm every night, I find myself falling asleep on the couch. If I am out doing things then it doesn't bother me though.

 13 weeks

 16 weeks

18. Have you gained weight? Not yet. With Alex, I lost 11 pounds in the first trimester. This time, I have lost 10 pounds. Without throwing up. And I eat nonstop. I was surprised I lost less this time since I was breastfeeding as well. But I think it was because I am at home all day while last time I was at school and couldn't eat anytime I wanted.

19. Where will this baby be born? Ithaca. Thank goodness, we will not have to switch doctors! It was such a disaster trying to switch insurance and doctors last time. This time, the baby will be covered under one insurance the whole time and I will go to the same doctor the whole time. This relieves my stress just thinking about it.

20. Will you have the baby in the hospital this time? If we make it there on time, that is the plan.

21. What have you been craving? Less fruit than I did last time. I still eat baby carrots but not the pound a week I ate last time. Less spaghetti as well. Now that I am thinking about it, I haven't really craved anything. Bummer. I need to get on that so I can send Sam on late night runs all over the city.

We are so grateful that I was able to get pregnant so easily. It broke my heart having to try more than one month because I know so many people who either struggle to get pregnant or are never able to get pregnant. I thought it was the beginning of a long and painful process of trying to get pregnant. People who have struggled probably think this sounds so ridiculous but my heart hurts for those people. The unknown can be so devastating. I know that not everyone gets the chance to feel a baby wiggle in their bellies. I thank God every day for sending us another baby. I hope to be a great mother to this child and to have my ability to love grow even more.


Bad Experience

I was ordering a smoothie on the 4th of July and it was not ready on time. The reason it was not ready was because they actually had made it but I was around the corner and they didn't call out my name. They just held up the smoothie and you are supposed to be watching and know it's yours.

I went up to complain but they were closed because I had been waiting forever so the smoothie stuff had already been put away and the money from the register had already been counted and removed so I could not get a refund. They tried making me a smoothie with what they had. The smoothie cost $23.99 (ridiculous!) so I was not about to let this slide.

I saw them filling a blender with milk and I'm like, "Oh great, a milk smoothie." So I went in the bathroom which was the size of an airplane bathroom with Alex with me. I was holding him while trying to pee. Then I came out and found  that my cousin Justine got engaged to one of the workers while I was in there! But I hadn't seen Justine at all up to this point! Plus, she's already married. I was so angry because she was acting crazy. And for some reason we were on a boat. I am not sure where Sam was but there was a good reason he wasn't there, like he was deployed or something.

Good thing it was just a dream... :) Wow, dreams while pregnant are weird.


The time Sam took an awesome vacation and left me home.

The title makes me sounds bitter. I probably could have gone but I would have had to buy my own ticket. So that's why he went alone... I'm not bitter.

Cornell's ILR program flew Sam to Utah to recruit at the BYU Grad Fair. The Grad Fair was on a Monday so he flew to Utah a few days early so he could spend the weekend with his family. Alex and I really missed him but it was a good experience for Sam and I was glad he got to see his parents.

Nathan also went to Utah so Kristen and I tried to keep ourselves busy. We had a lot of fun letting the boys play at the mall. Alex enjoyed pulling everything off the shelves and we had fun wandering through stores.



I cannot get enough of these cheeks. He cracks me up. I spend the whole day laughing at the things he does. He has so much attitude and yet is still incredibly sensitive. I am so glad I have this little buddy to keep me company all day. We miss Daddy but it is nice to have such a sweet and lovable little boy to share my time with. I love watching Alex's face when Sam gets home and Alex runs into his arms. Sometimes Alex doesn't get to see Sam at all in a whole day; I can tell they miss each other. Alex is the bright moment in every single day. I feel so lucky to have this miracle in my life.


All About Alex

Lest you think Alex has gone and gotten ugly since I don't do the monthly posts on him, here are some updates.

-He pulls his toy bin out of his bedroom and dumps it out on the living room floor.
-He brings us food to open so he can eat it.
-He puts food in the pocket of his bib. For safekeeping, I assume.
-He claps when he hears clapping or when we say, "Yay."
-He comes over and puts his head on my leg when people bang around in the apartment above us.
-He is so determined. He does what he wants even though it isn't always what we want.
-He does not easily forget about things. Especially the road, which is his favorite place to play.
-He covers his mouth while chewing.
-He blows while I am blowing on his food to cool it down. If it is too hot, he will spit it out and blow on it.
-He picks up garbage and throws it in the trash can.
-He holds where he got hurt after he falls.
-He wants whichever toy I have in my hands. It suddenly becomes the most exciting toy in the room and he must have it immediately.
-He pulls a golf club and golf ball out of his toy bin and does a little putting.
-He is a pro at using a straw.
-He gives awesome high fives and gets so excited to give a high five.
-He loves balls. A close second is his love for sticks.
-If I have Kix and Cheerios in my hand, he will pick out and eat all the Kix and then try to feed me the Cheerios.
-He eats dirt. And any leftover food he finds under the kitchen table.

14 months, 5 days old.

Alex and Canon are buddies!

Now how do I get down?

Help! Daddy put me on a shelf!

 Working on my fitness.

It's so heavy!

 Stuck in the stroller.

Hide and Seek - under the bed!

My hand was feeling a little dry.

Stick it all the way in, and swish it around.

Good morning!

 Quickly, quickly. Run away!

 You want this?

 Adorable dimples.

 Kisses for this cute boy.

 Crazy hair and dirty clothes.

 Starting to look so old!

 Pasta is delicious!

 It makes hair silky and smooth.

 Reading space.

 Time for a new book!

 Nice and cozy again.


Alex's Resume

Sam has been busy applying to tons of companies and sometimes I feel like he is electronically drowning in applications and networking. So I copied the format of his resume and made Alex his very own resume. I think it would be pretty difficult to not hire Alex. Unfortunately for all other employers, Alex is already employed. By me.



My dad sent me a link to a website where you can mark which states or countries you have visited. Here are our own maps.

Sam's Travels of the U.S.A.

visited 35 states (70%)
Create your own visited map of The United States

Emily's Travels of the U.S.A.

visited 44 states (88%)
Create your own visited map of The United States

Alex's Travels of the U.S.A.

visited 15 states (30%)
Create your own visited map of The United States


Bad Luck

Alex is a little aggressive and likes to bang things into the ground. I bet he will regret that when he learns he is going to have bad luck until after his baptism. Serves you right, Little Devil!



Sam was working so I went to the Elder's Quorum Barbecue husband-less. Alex and I had fun though and the food was great! At the end, they had a pitching (golf) competition to win a ice cream machine. We had to get the ball closest to a cup. Due to a lucky bounce, I won. I am excited to have a lot more homemade ice cream in the future!

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