Wednesday, February 29, 2012

One Month Old!

Somehow our little Graham is already one month old! 
He weighed in at 9 pounds 3 ounces (25-50th percentile), 22 inches (75th percentile), and 15 1/4 in head circumference (90th percentile.)
Graham has proved to be a very sweet baby thus far.  He much prefers to be held and cuddled rather than put down.  He is starting to have more alert periods each day, but is still pretty sleepy anytime we are in the car or on the go.  Overnight he is a champ, often sleeping for four hour stretches.  His gas issues seem to be getting better each day, so hopefully his system is working everything out.  He definitely recognizes Sam, Liv and my voices and turns his head towards them.  His eyes seem to be getting bluer and bluer by the day.  Happy one month of life and happy leap year!

Somebody couldn't resist taking part in the photo shoot....

Monday, February 27, 2012

Nude Newborn

We had some pictures taken of Graham over the weekend by local photographer Julia Franzosa who was looking to update the images on her website.  Here is a link with a preview of the pictures which I think turned out really great!  My nude little man is pretty cute.

(If you have a moment, leave a comment on the photographers blog and if we get enough comments, we will get free prints.  Thanks!)

Prepping for Ballet

I've been thinking about signing up Olivia for ballet classes this spring when she turns two.  I am pretty confident that she will love it considering the fun she had in this beautiful tutu and leotard. I see many dance recitals in our future...

Happy Birthday Dada (Sam)!

Dear Dada--

I know I am less than a month old, but I am pretty wise for a little baby and have already picked up on some important things about life.

First, I am confident you are an amazing dad and I am lucky to have you as my own.  I hear my crazy older sister constantly calling your name and laughing hysterically when you are around.  It seems like you have a good tickle attack that I am sure I will be the recipient of when I get a little bigger.  I've heard some of the songs you make up lyrics to and they are awesome.  Plus I've been catching you whistling the theme song from the Sprout channel, so I can tell you are a kid at heart.

Second, I've noticed that when you are around, everybody is smiling and happy, especially Mom.  She lights up when you get home from work (both because she loves you and probably because she is thrilled to have your extra hands around for bedtime too).  But more than just Mom and Olivia, you seem to bring a lot of joy and laughter to your family and friends.

Finally, I've seen how much you love your family and how hard you work for us and just wanted to make sure you know that we really appreciate it.

So happy 31st birthday to the best dad a new baby could ask for.   Mom, Olivia, Penny and I love you very much and hope this is one of your best years yet (I mean how could it not be now that I am around!!!)

Love Always,

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Super Incredible Big Sister

One of the sweetest gifts we've received was from my friend Rachel who sent personalized books from I See Me.  Not only did Graham get a book all about his name, but Olivia was lucky enough to get a book too.  It's called "The Super Incredible Big Sister Olivia" and it came with this medal.  Liv has been wearing it all around the house and occasionally letting Penny wear it too.  Such a proud big sister!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Three Weeks Old

Despite the baby acne, crusty eyes and bouts of gas, Graham is totally adorable as he turns three weeks old.  He's having longer alert periods each day and continues to be a snuggly little guy who loves being held. He is also back up above his birth weight at 8 lbs 9 oz.

Loving Little Bean

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Deja Vu

On Olivia's 12th day of life, I came down with a nasty case of mastitis.  And just like clockwork, on Graham's 12th day of life the same thing has happened.  Boo.  Luckily it was the weekend and my wonderful husband came to the rescue.  And with a little guy as cute as Graham is, I can suck it up and deal with the mastitis.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Madonna's Newest Fan

Olivia really loved Madonna's Superbowl halftime show.
Tomorrow we will have to spend some time listening and dancing to The Immaculate Collection!


After taking this picture of my little babies....
I immediately had flashbacks of this picture of my sister's oldest two little ones, Ellie and Brendan. 

Saturday, February 4, 2012

4 Day Check-Up

Graham checked out perfectly at his four day old appointment!  
He is back up to 8 pounds 3 ounces from leaving the hospital at 7 pounds 15 ounces.  

22 Months Old!

Turning 22 months old has been quite exciting for Olivia.  She got a new baby brother as a gift!  What a lucky little girl.  Liv has been absolutely great with the newest addition to our family.  (Penny, on the other hand, literally started to hyperventilate when she saw the new baby.)  As a new big sister, Olivia is always checking to see where the "Bay-bee" is and wanting to touch his little fingers, toes and head.  There are lots of snot-filled kisses and hugs too.  Thus far (knock knock), there hasn't been any jealousy or aggression towards Graham.  We are off to a good start.


Friday, February 3, 2012

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Welcome Graham!

Olivia meet Graham, Graham meet Olivia

Graham was prepared to meet his big sister and even came armed with gifts (Olivia the pig stuffed animal, book and lollipops).
Upon arrival, Olivia refused to even make eye contact or acknowledge her new brother.  Instead, we had some Mommy-Livie cuddles.
After many more cuddles and a few tears, we thought maybe Graham would like to watch a show with his sister on the ipad.  Success, or at least baby steps in terms of proximity to the baby.
And then, eye contact!
And our first little sibling snuggles.
Our new family of four!


When we decided on Olivia's name, it was such an easy process and we immediately came to an agreement as soon as we found out she was a girl.  Olivia Maeve, the perfect name for a sweet baby girl.  But technically there was no significance or ties to the name besides the fact that we just liked it.

This time around, the name process was not as simple.  I thought once we found out the gender, we would be able to agree on a the perfect boy name.  Nope.  Instead we each proposed at least 20 different names and we seemed to get further and further apart.  For example, I suggested names like Quinn, Declan, Liam and Henry.  Sam suggested names like Kellan, Grady, Louis and Luke.

But the name that really stuck with me from the beginning was Graham.  When we found out we were having a baby boy, I wanted to find a way to honor my dad or at least in my mind make a connection between the two.  Unfortunately my dad's name is Gerald.  Baby Jerry just didn't have the ring to it I was looking for.  So I decided that maybe a name starting with G would be an option.  Let's just say some of the "G" suggestions we received were a little off the mark (Gisseppe, Gustave, Geraldo). I kept coming back around to the name Graham.  Plus both my dad and Sam's dad have the same middle name, Edward, so it all started to come into place in my mind.

Graham Edward...G.E...Gerald Edward...James Edward.  The same initials as my dad, same middle names to honor both his grandfathers.  Pretty good compromises.  And although we aren't going to be calling him "G.E.," the significance of the initials is close to my heart considering that my dad's pen name was G.E.Murray and that's how he was known in the literary world.  I could only hope that our Graham has as many wonderful qualities that both his grandfathers have.  The gift of writing and love of literature, humor, smarts, etc.

And for our little guy, there is actually a nice link back a few generations to the men in our families.  My grandfather was Gerald Edward Murray Sr (G.E.M), my dad was Gerald Edward Murray Jr (G.E.M), and my cousin is Gregory Edward Murray (G.E.M).  On the Elsener side, Jim's father, fondly known as "Whitey," was George Elmer Elsener (G.E.E) which will be our guy's initials too.  This may all sound a little looney to focus on people's initials, but anybody that knows me knows that I love a monogram so it actually makes sense in my mind.

Now the only glitch was would Sam come around to the name because he was hesitant at first.  I had started to give up and tried to focus on other name options because I didn't want to force any names on him.   Then at Christmas, there was a miracle.  Under our Christmas tree, there appeared an unlabeled wrapped gift of graham crackers.  It appeared that Santa was weighing in on our baby naming debate and was sending a message.

So after months of debate, it was jointly agreed upon...Graham Edward Elsener.  And I think we can agree that it's the perfect name for our sweet little boy.
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