"I came that they might have life, and have it abundantly" -John 10:10

Keeping up with the Poulsen Family

Friday, August 12, 2011

Kate is 3 months old!

Here we go again- a monthly post laminating the fact that time is just flying by! Kate is a quarter of a year old, and just in time for me to back to school!  I remember many parents telling me that your favorite time during your child's life tends to be the current time that they are in.  I can't agree more.  I have loved watching Kate grow this month.  You can see her personality starting to show.  She loves to be around people- Jake like's to say that she suffers from FMS syndrome (fear of missing something), just like her momma.  Kate is also very passionate- she is either very happy and smiling all the time, or on rarer occasions, very unhappy, showing off her new, ear-piercing scream!  Here's a list of Kate's 3 month accomplishments-

  • Kate, you sleep through the night almost every night.  You go to sleep around 8:30, and wake up between 6:30 and 7:30.  Mommy and Daddy love this accomplishment!
  • You put yourself to sleep almost every night.  We hardly ever have to fight you to go to bed...when 8 hits, your eyes are very very heavy!
  • You outgrew your size one diapers and are now in size 2.  Mommy told you to suck in for a few days so we could finish out the size ones!
  • You smile all the time.  All we have to do is look at you, and you melt our hearts with a truly joyful look!
  • You started laughing!  Daddy was changing your diaper and you gave him a good, belly style laugh!  If we tickle you under the arms, you treat us to this amazing sound. 
  • You went swimming for the first time!  You weren't quite sure what to think, but you didn't hate it.  We figure that's good enough for now. 
  • Kate, you went to day care to get ready for Mommy going back to school.  Ms. Vickie said you did a great job, and will do even better once you get used to her. 
  • You are very possessive of your Daddy when he gets home from work.  You cuddle with him for more then an hour while Mommy finishes getting dinner ready. 
  • You started grabbing at toys.  You love your duckie, and put his beak in your mouth all the time.  
  • You still play on your playmat often, and entertain yourself with all your hanging toys. 
  • You started sitting in your bumbo.  You are only happy for about 5 minutes, but it's nice to see you sitting up like a big girl. 
  • You are very close to rolling over from back to tummy.  You get to your side, and stop.
Mommy and Daddy can't wait to see what this next month brings.  You are growing up so fast, and we can already tell what a smart, sweet, beautiful little girl you are!  We love you so much!
Cuddling with your daddy-  I love your "He's mine...back off  Mommy" look!

Sitting like a big girl!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Late Night Musings

I know all moms give the advice of "make sure to sleep when the baby is sleeping,"  but tonight, I just wasn't tired.  I'm up right now in a quiet living room, with an asleep baby girl, asleep husband, a book I just finished, and a full heart.  I have had a lovely, quiet evening by myself, interrupted by a few moments of my laughter listening to Kate put her self asleep on the monitor (the girl loves to have conversations by herself).  In thinking of how nice this night was, my mind wandered to how extraordinarily blessed our little family is.  In high school, I had a xanga, and though I will save myself from embarrassment by allowing all you readers of my far more mature blog access to my high school thoughts by giving you the address, there was one thing I did on a fairly regular basis that I was thinking tonight about bringing it back.  The fad at the time was to list your one hundred favorite things.  When rereading that list, I had to laugh at how much that list has changed, but in alot of ways, how it has stayed the same.  So, due to my present insomnia, as well as my overwhelming blessings, I have decided to update that list, starting with 50 things.

My favorite things (Anyone else singing the song right now??) Disclaimer: these are in no particular order.
1.  smelling a newborn baby 2. falling asleep next to my husband 3. babies in sleepers 4. Road trips 5. playing guitar with Chelsea 6.  Talking baby strategies with Cassie 7. Sitting and having a beer with my mom 8.  Sitting in the man cave with my dad 9. Kate's smile 10. Old and beautiful hymns at mass 11. reading a good book 12. going to the library 13. going for a good run 14. cooking something new 15. playing mario kart with jake 16. giving Kate a bath 17.  throwing Abby up in the air 18.  girl's nights 19.  late night talks with Jake 20.  visiting with family and my wonderful in-laws. 21. Aggie football 22.  any football on tv 23.  playing settlers of Catan 24. playing volleyball at camp 25. writing in my journal 26. getting the laundry finished 27. changing Kate's diaper and seeing how small I can get the dirty one before I put it in the diaper genie...don't laugh moms, I know you do the same thing! 28. watching reruns of the office 29.  cooking with Jake 30. while I hate shopping, finding clothes I am really excited about 31.  teaching a fun lesson 32.  old country music on the radio 33. going in to Kate's room in the morning and seeing her smile when she sees me 34. a good conversation with old friends 35.  the friendship feature on facebook that allows you to see old pictures 36. drinking a cold beer on a hot night 37.  making it to daily mass with Kate in tow 38. 5:45, when Jake gets home from work 39.  the first day of school 40. the last day of school 41. skyping with Chelsea, and Jake's family 42. updated blog entries from friends 43. unexpected emails/facebook messages 44.  Extreme home makeover: Weight Loss addition 45.  maybe tmi here, but being able to store pumped milk.  It's such an accomplishing task. 46. Watching Kate smile/fall asleep in her daddy's arms. 47. visiting Castroville, TX 48. visits to Dallas from family, and friends 49. hand sanitizer 50. going to weddings.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Kate is 2 months old!

Kate- you were such a joy this second month.  Mommy and Daddy were talking about how we just can't believe how fast the time has gone since we were blessed with you!  It seems like I was pregnant forever, but now that we get to see you, play with you, cuddle with you, etc, everyday, the time sure has flown.  The following is a list of your many accomplishments this month.  I can't wait to see how much you grow in the next 4 weeks!

  • You are a great sleeper- You started sleeping through the night about 2 weeks ago!  On average, you sleep 6-7 hours the first time we put you down, then usually another 2-3 after a feeding. 
  • You are huge :).  You weight 13 lbs and 3 oz, and are in the the 95 percentile for both height and weight! You sure have come along way since your birth weight of 6 15!
  • You eat almost every 3 hours, and are a great eater (clearly, just look at your weight :) ).  You did start, though, getting fussy at your late night feeding, but Mommy and Daddy figured out you just need to walk around a bit and be calm in a dark room, and then you will eat!
  • You love your toys- especially your play mat and your crib aquarium.  
  • You learned to wake Mommy and Daddy up at night when you were ready to eat by hitting your aquarium with your feet, instead of crying.  It really scared us the first time you did it...we had no idea how you got to the bottom of your crib!
  • Along with the last accomplishment, you have learned to scooch in your crib.  It's so fun to see where you end up when you wake up!
  • You smile all the time!!  It's so fun to play with you and see you react.  Your beautiful smile can melt our heart.  
  • You were baptized on June 19, Daddy's first Father's day.  You looked beautiful in your gown, and Mommy's baptism cross.  
  • You still roll over from tummy to back, and have gotten really close to rolling over from back to tummy
  • You love watching your Daddy.  When he walks around the house, you love to watch him. 
  • You got your first big round of shots.  You did great at the doctors office, but definitely didn't like it when you felt the needles.  Mommy was just upset as you were seeing you in pain :(.
Kate, you are such a beautiful, healthy girl, and we are so excited to watch you continue to grow!

Your joyful 2 month picture!

Monday, July 4, 2011

"All that America is!"

Anyone who knows me knows what a huge history buff I am, and how important I think today is :)  Some of my favorite July 4th memories include watching fireworks form our boat on the lake as a child, hilarious skits at camp including Betsy Ross on the dock, reciting the Gettysburg Address, setting off fireworks for campers, and the year fireworks were banned and we had to have a show only with sparklers in the meadow at The Pines.  We made it work.

This year, we loved our three day weekend celebration.  We watched a great fireworks show about a mile from our house (Frisco Freedom Fest) on Saturday, and had a blast introducing Kate to fireworks.  She didn't really get the concept, but Mommy and Daddy had a lot of fun relaxing and watching the show from the back of our explorer.  On Sunday, we continued an annual tradition since moving to Dallas and went to Kaboom town in Addison with a great group of friends.  Although our going was not a newsworthy event like in years past (see youtube video for proof), we still had a blast.  Jake and I were really worried Kate would get too hot, and although she was only in her diaper by the end of the night, she made it through with flying colors and even slept soundly through the 30 minute show.  I can't wait for future celebrations, when she can really enjoy a fun day with family and friends.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Brahm's Lullaby and our Nighttime routine!

One of the greatest blessings of so many babies in one year for our family (4!!), has been getting advice and watching family members raise babies, and seeing what works for us and our little Kate.  One thing I have really taken from Cassie is to establish a nighttime routine for a refreshing night sleep for both baby and mom and dad.  It's really cool to watch Abby go to bed if you ever get the chance- she needs her "Lovey" (only used to go to sleep), and sometimes her daddy to sing the Aggie war hymn.  In a combination that seems to be as potent as Nitequill and warm milk, the girl is out usually within a few minutes.  And, if she isn't, she plays by herself until she goes to sleep.  Now I'm sure there are a few rough nights, but for the most part, Abby is a wonderful sleeper!  I was telling Cass, though, that I hope she grows out of at least one of her night time routines, or else she will be a college freshman wondering why she always falls asleep when she hears the Fightin' Texas Aggie Band (and Uncle Jake really wouldn't like that)!

I write all this to say that we have worked hard to try to start a similar routine now that Kate is almost 2 months.  Lately, I have been putting her to sleep for her naps drowsy, but still awake to see if she can put herself to sleep.  And, she usually does!  Luckily, we haven't had any meltdowns from her yet, and I know it will be hard when she does cry, but it seems to work for us to let her fall asleep on her own.  The last few nights, we have done the same:  Jake will walk with her for about 5 minutes to get her sleepy (he's really good at the 5 S's), we pray with her, and I make sure to put her aquarium on playing Brahm's before I leave her room.  The last two nights, she has slept for more then 7 hours!

As we listen to the lullaby in our room through the baby monitor, I have started to say a silent prayer that goes along with it.  I know now, everytime I hear the lullaby, I will be brought back to these times: a beautiful era of watching our newborn daughter grow, learn, and be joyful in her own little way.  God has blessed us so much with such and abundant life.

My prayer for Kate to the tune of her favorite lullaby:
So Goodnight, and God Bless
May you sleep with the Angels
So Goodnight, and God Bless
I love you, My dear.

Kate, asleep before we could put her down!

Monday, June 20, 2011

The smell of Chrism....

will always be a reminder of a wonderful day- June 19, 2011:  Kate's baptism and Jake's first father's day!  This morning when Kate woke up to eat, I immediately smelled the sweet and poignant smell again, and it instinctively brought a smile to my face.  I don't even want to bathe her!  I made sure Kate wore her bonnet for awhile so that it would soak up the smell of such a beautiful sacrament. The baptism was so beautiful.  We were blessed to have the same priest that married us, Father David, baptize Kate.  He was great, and gave a wonderful homily about how our faith has been passed down from generations to generations, and is the best thing we can leave our children.

When we asked Father David to baptize Kate, he suggested that we have the ceremony on Father's day.  I'm so glad he did.  Mom hosted an amazing bbq for all the fathers on Saturday, and being the party host that she is, did the same for Kate on Sunday.  We had all kinds of family join us, and were blessed to have a guest all the way from Tennessee- Jamie!  Many thanks to everyone who made the trip to make Kate's baptism special- All three of my grandparents, my uncles and aunts, my cousins, the Congers, Chelsea, Hilary, and Jamie. 

What an a rich faith we have.  God Bless Kathryn Kay!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Jumping on the bandwagon- Our engagement story

I have loved reading the engagement stories of dear friends this past week.  I decided to play follow the leader and share Jake an I's story!

First, a little background info: 
In the summer of 2008, I had graduated and was working at the Pines, and Jake was taking his last few classes at A&M.  We had been dating for almost three years at that point (with one brief hiatus; which if you ask Jake about, he will happily explain to you the "big mistake" I made in dumping him  ;) ).  I knew an engagement was coming, but I didn't know Jake had already asked my dad and was working hard to afford a ring! 
Fast forward to October.  We both had just moved to Dallas.  I was still looking for a job, and Jake was working at Macaroni Grill.  I finally got an interview, and on Wednesday of that week, I was offered a job teaching Social Studies at West Junior High in Richardson.  I thought it was the best day since I graduated...but little did I know, the coming weekend was about to wrap up the best week of my life- now overshadowed by our wedding and honeymoon, and the birth of Kate. 

Now, the actual engagement story taken from my knot page.  Which, by the way, was so fun to go back and visit!  I haven't looked at that for almost 2 years :)  Excuse the third person usage.

Jake and Courtney had planned on joining Courtney's parents to watch the Aggies battle Kansas State on Kyle Field. As the game ended (badly), Jake told Courtney that he would meet her outside the stadium since he "had to go to the bathroom." Though Courtney thought it was slightly ridiculous that he couldn't have done this during the game so they could get home and out of the heat, she reluctantly agreed. When she and her parents were leaving Kyle Field, she saw her Aunt Rita and Uncle Lindy all the way in from San Antonio standing with a rose. They gave the rose to Courtney, along with a card that had instructions on it for Courtney to trust during the next journey, signed by Jake. It led her to another spot on campus where Chelsea, Courtney's twin sister was standing with another rose, and another card. Courtney was led to spots on campus that meant alot to the couple throughout their dating years, where her sister Cassie and some of the couple's closest friends and suprise guests (like Jake's mom all the way form TN!) were waiting with roses and more clues with sweet messages. The trail ended at St. Mary's chapel where Courtney and Jake had spent many hours in prayer. Jake met her outside, led her in the doors, where he asked her to be his wife. She, of course, said yes!
Jake surprised Courtney again by having almost a hundred of her friends and family waiting at her parent's house to congratulate and celebrate with the couple!

What a great day- and what a great decision on my part to say yes to a man who strives to lead me, and now our daughter, closer to Christ everyday.  And, he does a great job of calming down his "fireball" of a wife on a pretty consistent basis.