Tuesday, September 23, 2014


Waking up from naps is hit or miss.  I don't do the "portrait a week" or "photo a day" thing, because, ain't nobody got time for that.  But if I did, this would be the one representing this week.  Sorry for the lazy Instagram double up, this moment was just too good. 

Messy hair don't care (but Penny does care, and she's very upset about it everything)

Help Our Rank & Visit Top Baby Blogs, Baby Blog Directory!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Dear Sister

Dear Baby Josie,

When they said you were in Mommy's tummy, I wasn't sure what to think about when you came out of Mommy's tummy but I'm sure glad you're out now because her belly was getting so big that I couldn't sit in her lap or give her good hugs and she was getting to be very slow going up and down the stairs. 

I need to tell you something about the crying. It makes me frantic. I don't like it. You should use your words. You sound like an animal. It really stresses me out. I try to bring you things to make you feel better but your face just gets redder and you just cry louder until Mommy puts her bube in your mouth. In the car I try to tell you Don't cry baby sister, everything will be ok, but I feel like you're not even listening to me. Let's work on that. 

I like your little toes and hairs. I think it's funny when you sneeze and when you try to eat my face. I like when you come downstairs to say goodnight to me, as long as you don't cry in my big girl room and you don't use any of my blankets. 

I've noticed everyone else raises their eyebrows and makes their voice real high when they talk to you, so I've started doing that too. I hope you like it. You're so lucky you don't have teeth so Daddy doesn't brush them. Sorry about that time when jelly dropped on your head from my peanut butter sandwich. 

Can you please be nice to Mommy's bubes? She makes this scrunchy face like she's going to cry every time you start nursing on her. I don't like it when Mommy cries so don't hurt her with your mouth so much.

I get to sleep in my big girl bed so it's cool with me that you get to sleep with mommy and daddy for now, but don't rub it in k?

When you're bigger maybe you can have a bite of my cereal. I tried to give you some but they said you only get Mommy's milk when you're a baby. They said I nursed on Mommy's bubes when I was a baby too but I don't remember. They also said I was way smaller than you but I don't remember that either.

You can have all my old pacifiers. Pacifiers are awesome but I don't need them anymore. Also, baths in the sink are awesome too, you don't need to cry the whole time when you are having one. When you cry it makes me have to yell so Mommy can hear me. Yelling stresses me out.

Not sure why everyone gets so excited when you burp and poop in your diaper. When I burp they make me say "excuse me." 

I'm glad the dark crusty poop is gone from your belly button, now it looks just like mine.

Since you came, I've been doing very very fun things like hanging out with Meemo and Boppa all day and getting new toys. Thanks for the Olaf sticker from your doctor's appointment. 

I like you being in our family. Sorry I kneed you in the back on accident that one time when you were nursing.

Love you Josie,

(Your big sister) Penny

Help Our Rank & Visit Top Baby Blogs, Baby Blog Directory!

Thursday, September 18, 2014


So I'm in bed napping on my left side, in the same position I've been sleeping for months.  When I start to get stiff and ready to roll onto my right, out of habit, I reach my right hand across my mid-section to grab my watermelon of a belly and lift it over the top of me. 

But it's not there.  Nothing to grab but a soft postpartum pouch. 

I stop mid-roll and lay flat on my back and stretch my arms and legs in a way I haven't stretched for half a year.  Ah ceiling, it's so good to stare at you again!  Then I relax into a sprawl, like a Raggedy Ann doll on the floor, and drift back to sleep.   

I'm not pregnant anymore.

Sure it feels like I have twenty hemorrhoids and boobs full of rocks, but I can lay on my back again!! And on my stomach!!  Healing from a vaginal birth (and stage three tear) has been a walk in the park compared to the discomforts of my whole pregnancy.  And especially compared to recovering from my Cesarean two years ago, after which I couldn't even lay all the way down on a bed in any position for over a month.

It's been difficult to "take it easy" because... um... toddler, and because I feel pretty darn good.   Maybe I didn't realize how miserable I was until I wasn't. Or maybe you all knew how miserable I was because I complained so much...

Doing too much in the first week is catching up to me now and I'm needing to make myself relax, make sure I lay down more often and don't lift heavy things.   I'm looking forward to being back to one hundred percent, hopefully in a few weeks.

Anywhooo, that's an update on me and mine.

Josie weighed in at a whopping 8 lbs / 9 ounces today at her two-week well check... so she's doing pretty great too (that's birthweight + 1 lb / 5 ounces).

Some things for you preggos out there that you'll want to have ready at home for after baby comes:
  • Colace or another OTC stool softener. 
  • Cotton over-night maxi pads (I like Kotex because they use more cotton, I had issues with Always-brand after last birth)
  • Witch Hazel (you can apply it directly to your pads and even freeze them)
  • A squeeze/squirt bottle (your birth place should send you home with one)
  • Epsom salt
  • Coconut oil 
  • Help lined up for things like laundry and cooking and dishes and errands (and your older kids if you have them). Whether it's hubby or family or friends, you'll need people in your corner who understand that resting and nursing and sleeping are the top priorities for mama right now.

Thanks for all the support on Top Baby Blogs!  You all are the best readers ever!
Help Our Rank & Visit Top Baby Blogs, Baby Blog Directory!

Friday, September 12, 2014

The Arrival of Josephine Lucille

Josephine Lucille Griffin was born last Thursday. 
about 12 hours of labor, half an hour of pushing, baby girl breathed her first breath at 2:50pm. 
7 pounds / 6.5 ounces,  20.25 inches long, sweet as a baby ever could be.

I awoke at 2:04am to extremely strong contractions that were immediately five minutes apart. She came out singing just before 3 o'clock in the afternoon.

It wasn't an easy labor by any stretch of the imagination, but somehow a week later it seems so brief, and the pain so... insignificant. 

I got my beautiful healthy baby.  I got my VBAC.  I got a bunch ton of stitches and some great birth photos from my amazing doula to show for it (most of which you will never see...) 

Fifty-some diapers later, Dan and I are soaking up the delirious bliss of cuddling soft fuzzy newborn skin and catching glimpses of squinty blue eyes in between sleeps and feedings.   She nurses like a champ.  She looks more like me as a baby than Penny ever did.  Her hair is coming in blonde and her complexion seems like it's going to be fair.  She's alert and happy and the easiest baby ever.  I am completely in love again, now threefold.

Big Sister Penny is adjusting well.  She's chosen to share a few toys and prize blankets with Baby Josie on her own terms, and offers helpfully "I will hold baby Josie, Mommy" instead whenever I ask Dan to take the little swaddled bundle for a minute.  We are constantly intercepting enthusiastic toddler limbs from flailing into Baby Josie's face, or lovingly climbing on top of her sleeping body.   It's sweet. The other toddler stuff is a whole 'nother deal but we'll keep this post serene and only infused with baby goodness. 

"We have two kids," Dan and I will look at each other and say. 

 Two car seats. Two video monitors. Two little souls in our care. 

Two wonderful daughters. Praise God.

Thank you everyone for the well wishes.   We are truly blessed.

Help Our Rank & Visit Top Baby Blogs, Baby Blog Directory!

Saturday, September 6, 2014


She's here. More to come!

Help Our Rank & Visit Top Baby Blogs, Baby Blog Directory!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

What's New?

You know, just waiting for baby to come.

Seriously.... how do women do this?  I'm 39 weeks 3 days and kind of going crazy.   Not just that I'm that anxious for baby to come, but it's killing me not to be able to plan anything on the calendar.

You may have noticed I've been blogging a lot to help pass the time and afford myself a little break from everything else I've been trying to get done around the house and on the computer.

In other news.

Dan got a new job.  So that's pretty exciting.  The timing of it all, the start date and the insurance changes and what not being so close to this major life event we have coming up has been a little uneasy, but everything has been falling into place nicely and we feel so blessed and convinced that this is truly what was meant to be.

Murphy's Law continued it's wrath over our household on Sunday when our ground-floor Air Conditioner broke down.  [In Arizona this is kind of a big deal at the end of August.]  Thankfully, our basement has a separate AC unit and we were able to sleep down there in the guest room, and a wonderful guy from JMAC (who we will forever be loyal to after this whole experience) came out, on Labor Day, and fixed it for us.  After recently having to replace the washer, dryer, dishwasher and garbage disposal, we are thinking the fridge and water heater are next and then we will officially have no issues with appliances for another 5-10 years.  At least that's one way to look at it.

Selling stuff.   Along those lines, we are selling a bunch of things on Craigslist.  Dave Ramsey says that when money gets tight, you should "start selling anything you own that isn't nailed to the ground."   Two things of note that we've got posted for sale are a fantastic refrigerator for the garage, and the camera and two lenses I started my photography journey with.  Let me know if you are interested.  Sorry for the in-blog sales pitch.

Dan is addicted to a new online activity: Ancestry.com   So my dad retired last April and soon-thereafter he took on the project of researching and building our family tree.  Dan got on the band wagon a few weeks ago and hasn't played any video games since.   It's kind of driving me crazy (hours and hours of time on the computer) but it seriously is really cool.  He's traced our children's blood back to the 1400's and has some really great leads that go back as far as the 1100's!

Fantasy Football is back.  When I look back to my mindset last year when I wrote this, I feel a little guilty about the huge fight Dan and I just had about the amount of time (and money, see above about Murphy's Law completely draining our savings account) that being in two leagues is going to consume from our family life when we have a new baby due any day.  Alas, it's here.  Neither one of us give a rat's you-know-what about football, but being a part of a Fantasy League is a camaraderie thing and it's ok that I don't understand it.  It's important to him, so I've let it go and am being supportive.  And I really hope he wins something!

Penny moved in to her big girl room.  It's not fully furnished or finished yet, but she's made a nice little nest on her big girl bed and Dan and I feel great about getting her completely out of the nursery as part of the exciting "big girl" transition before baby came.  I fought this as hard as I fought early potty training, thinking that we shouldn't mess with a perfectly calm bedtime routine and the fact that she never once climbed out of the crib.  But it's worked out quite nicely.  Let the record show that my husband was right.  She loves telling people about her big girl bed.  I love seeing her face when we go in to get her in the morning.  So empowered and gleeful.  I can't believe how old she seems.
Everything else about having a two-year-old is as fun as it is exhausting, which says a lot about both.

You still have a few days to enter to win the JoJo Maman Bébé giveaway!  Remember, you have to comment on the blog post from your computer (not your phone) and share it to the social media outlet of your choice.  Details within!

A report on baby's pending arrival 
(so you can read it here and don't have to ask me and violate any of my ten things not to say)...
I had my "burst of energy" last Saturday night at 2am when I awoke to go to the bathroom and couldn't go back to sleep, so instead I got up and edited photos and typed a ridiculously long email to our immediate family communicating what to expect when I go into labor.  I also wrote out documents outlining the proper care of our dogs and our Penny while we are at the hospital.  You know, just so I could feel a little in control of the whole situation and in case it turns out a complete stranger that has never met our dogs or our Penny ends up being the one caring for them.  I felt like I was on speed for three hours.  I thought for sure I was going to go into labor that next day.

I had some practice labor very early Monday morning (while the AC was out), almost two hours of contractions that were six minutes apart and two minutes long.  Dan and I both thought for sure it was the real deal.  Then I fell back asleep and haven't had another contraction since.  And so it goes.

For all you birth nerds, as of today, I am currently about 2cm dilated and baby is still "pretty high" at station 3.  I'm pretty bummed out and don't want to talk about it.  I think she's gonna come real late.  Stinker.

Also, I'm craving pumpkin spice cake with cream cheese frosting.

Thanks for all the support on Top Baby Blogs!  Y'all are the best readers ever!
Help Our Rank & Visit Top Baby Blogs, Baby Blog Directory!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Your Daily Vote

Top Baby Blogs has just done their quarterly (I think?) reset, which means we are back to zero, zip, nada, double donuts.  

If you find yourself "liking" my posts on Facebook, or venturing over here to this little blog often, you can show your love every day with a vote for Becoming Julie Griffin on TBB ... but especially today and tomorrow!  It's just two clicks and I so appreciate the support!  

You'll see this rectangular link: 
Vote Daily and Help Our Rank at Top Baby Blogs!
conveniently located at the bottom of most of my posts, 
or you can always use the button up there on the right if you are in a web browser.

Being ranked [somewhat] highly in the Top Baby Blogs directory means I get to tell my story to more people all over the place, and who knows what could come of it!


here's Penny eating some pregnancy smoothie with "uhneedanakkin" on her "lap"

Oh, and if you haven't entered to win the adorable winter set or hooded towel from JoJo Maman Bébé for the little one in your life (or as a gift!), get on it!
You have until Saturday, unless the baby comes, then you might have longer...

Monday, September 1, 2014

Ten things NOT to say to a woman within a week of her due date

First, I want to issue a blanket public apology for every time I have violated these myself to fellow preggers.  I didn't know what it was like.  I didn't make it past 37 weeks with my first kiddo, so I had no idea the anxious thoughts and physical discomfort that come in the last week or two of pregnancy.

Now that I'm here at 39 weeks 2 days, in a pretty fragile emotional state with no signs of active labor coming anytime soon, I want to share a few things that generally make me cringe inside when I hear them... for the benefit of all people who want to love their pregnant friends (and strangers) with their words.

[unless you're on her birth team
or in the inner circle of friends and family]

1. When do you think it will happen?
Trying to guess this makes a woman crazy.  She has no idea and no control, don't rub it in.

2. You must be soooo ready. 
Yes, Captain Obvious, she literally feels like she might burst.   Her body is done and ready.  Also, for me at least, this one is just a reminder of all the ways that I'm actually not ready.  Can you ever be fully "ready" for what's coming with birth and a baby?  Is the to-do list ever done?  Can you truly prepare for the unknown?

3. Have you been having any contractions? 
Chances are she has, and she's frustrated that none of them have led to "go time" yet.  She probably doesn't want to give anyone besides her birth team a play-by-play report of her uterus' practice rounds.

4. Have they checked you to see if you're dilated? 
If she has, it was probably not a great experience, and the information obtained really doesn't do anything except mess with her mind.  If she's like me and hasn't been checked, it's just a reminder of another unknown.

5. Has your doctor said when he's going to induce you?
I think all women would prefer to go into spontaneous labor on their own versus being induced.  Even if she doesn't mind being induced, the idea of going so long that the birth team felt they had no other option than to intervene with artificial methods does not make her feel good.  She does not want to focus on induction when spontaneous labor is still a very good possibility.  Let's not assume that all women are going to have to be medically induced if they stay pregnant "too long".

6. Have you tried [fill in the remedy that supposedly makes you go into labor]?
She's probably heard of it, and maybe tried it, and if she's still pregnant, it didn't work.

7. You know, the longer they stay in there, the better. 
This sure doesn't make her feel any better about the waiting, especially if she's already full term.  By this point, she knows without a doubt that baby is fully developed and has no medical reason to stay in there any longer, so this statement (which is debatable anyway) ain't no silver lining.

8. Are you super scared?
This one usually comes from people who have never had a baby, innocently just trying to make conversation or seem sympathetic.  Please let's not to bring attention to the anxiety she might be feeling.

9. You look exhausted.
Boo.  She probably feels like a whale.  And isn't sleeping well.  And has to pee ALL the time.  And has a hard time going up the stairs and getting in and out of the hot car.   And her back hurts, and probably her pelvis and her feet.  Of course she's exhausted.

10. Anything about your own pregnancy, labor, or delivery. 
Hearing other women constantly talk about their own experiences (especially the one-uppers) can be touchy for some preggos all throughout pregnancy.  I personally don't mind it that much earlier on, but right now during this last little bit I simply don't want to hear any of it.

A few things you could say to her instead:
1. You look fantastic.
2. I'm so excited for you.
3. Can I bake you something?

One last thought: it's OK to talk about you.   She is thinking about her bun in the oven pretty much all the time when she's alone, it's nice to give her brain a little break to think about what is going on with her friend/sister/mom/aunt/cousin/neighbor.  So don't hold back, she's still her.

Help Our Rank & Visit Top Baby Blogs, Baby Blog Directory!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...