Of Mice and Pen

Aloha! Hope everyone is having a great week so far! Ours has been really busy, pretty stressful, but overall still good. Guess those good weekend vibes have kept going into the week, because I’ve been able to mostly maintain a sense of calmness despite the fact that this week is going by suuuper quickly, and I still have lots to get done. (And in spite of the fact that my car maintenance appointment ended up turning into a $700 brake pad replacement. Wheeeeee…)

It does help that I’ve gotten to spend lots of time with the most adorable people in my life, of course!

 

Tuesday was a crazy busy day — work, personal training, and therapy! — but my parents and my sister-in-law came over for dinner, so I got to cuddle up with baby Marnie which was a very nice way to end the day! She’s getting so big and alert! I mean, “big” being a relative term next to our giant toddler, of course, but it’s still really fun to see her growing up. Especially now that we know firsthand how fun she’s going to become!

I had a work event last night (Wednesday), so I had planned on taking the morning off to take Penny to Cox Farms for a mommy meetup at the Fall Festival, but, alas, she had other plans…

Lol. And since she doesn’t nap when she’s at daycare, I try my best to let her catch up when she’s at home. But I still wanted to take advantage of having her with me for the day, so after she woke up (and after a snack that she shared with Daxter, of course), we packed up and headed out!

Our first stop was to Caboose Commons, the new brewery/coffee house next to Mosaic where my friend works — it’s an awesome spot that I definitely can see myself working from often in the future!

 

They have a super cute little seating lounge with a kid’s rocking chair that Penny was super into. Notice how much happier she is sitting in the chair than sitting in her own mother’s lap. -_-

 

And after our stop there, we headed to our favorite play place, nook! They have an awesome little dress up nook set up now with various costumes, and I had a lot of fun dressing Penny up like a little mouse (and a raccoon, but she didn’t like that costume as much, lol.) She loved the slide this time too, and was going down all by herself (backwards, on her stomach)!

 

Our fun adventures totally wiped her out, too, she was snoring in the car within minutes of me strapping her in to go home. Unfortunately, I have not in any way mastered transferring her from her carseat to her crib without waking her up, so it was a short lived nap… which made me feel justified about her long morning nap, at least.

 

We came home, she played for a bit on her own while I got things ready for the evening, and I got to watch her DESTROY some spaghetti & meatballs before I had to skidaddle off to my event (leaving her daddy with bath duty, gahaha.)

 

Today she’s back at daycare and I’m off to work at my coworker’s big party in DC for most of the day. The sad news is that means I only got about 40 minutes with her in total today, since she’ll have long been in bed by the time I get home late tonight. The good news is, according to my daycare app, she’s actually taking a nap right now! So hopefully she should be in a really good mood for her daddy when he picks her up. And, of course, I feel extremely blessed that the days when I don’t get to see much of Penny are so few and far between.

Anyway, all that being said, it’s time to get cracking with the rest of my to-do list, since I’ll be heading into DC shortly. See you guys on the flipside!

A Great Weekend

Soooooo yeah. Last week was a bit of a bear. We had a crazy, sad, sniffly, sick-tastic week, wherein not only did our poor precious Penny fight off her own dual sicknesses (hand, foot, and mouth disease AND an ear infection), but Sean also caught HFM and I got sick with an undetermined illness of my own (lol cry sob).

Anyway, I am ecstatic to announce that despite last weekend and the first part of the week being sad and sick, we ended up having a really great weekend!

Everyone was feeling so much better by Friday, thank Goodness! We had a playdate with my friend Sami (Penny’s old nanny) and her daughter. We returned home so that Penny could nap, and when she got up I discovered that I CAN FINALLY PUT PENNY’S HAIR INTO A WHALESPOUT AND PIGTAILS!!!!!!

 

They are incredibly thin and tiny and you can barely even see them but they’re totally adorable and I love them. ::star eyes emoji::

So alas, Sean had to work for the first part of Saturday, but Penny and I had plenty to keep us busy! We started out  by heading to the gym for the first time in over a week — yipes. It may not have been my wisest decision to take my first BodyPump class after being sick and sedentary for a week, but I did it! Aaaaaaand I’m ridonkulously sore now but hey, I survived!

 

I’ve been wanting to try BodyPump for a while, since I’ve really been liking lifting weights, and it’s kind of like a cardio weightlifting class? But hot damn, it was hard! Even though you’re lifting relatively light, you’re doing tons of reps and it all moves really quickly. I’m sure it gets easier as you do more classes because you learn what to expect (like with any fitness classes, I’ve found), I just need to make sure I don’t sacrifice proper(ish) form when trying to keep up, because my neck was a little tweaky the next day. I’ll definitely do it again! One of my mama friends belongs to the same gym as me, and does this Saturday morning class a lot, so hopefully having a friend there will help keep me motivated to go, hehe.

Anyway, we had a bit of downtime at home afterwards, then headed to the first birthday for another one of Penny’s little friends, Julianna! It was mermaid themed, and my friend Laura put together a seriously amazing, Pinterest-worthy party. So fun and creative — the clamshell photobooth is something I’m totally filing away for one day when I hopefully get to throw a mermaid-themed party of my own.

 

 

And the partying didn’t end there! That evening we headed to a party with some of Sean’s old college friends. We weren’t sure how long we’d be able to stay what with Penny’s bedtime and all, but she was so chill and happy to play that we ended up staying 2 hours past her bedtime — and she never melted down or anything! She just really didn’t seem tired — she didn’t even fall asleep in the car on the way home until like, 5 minutes before we got back (of course.) And then she slept in until 8:30 Saturday. I mean, miracle kid or what?

 

Finally, we capped off our very nice weekend by heading into DC for brunch Sunday morning. The weather was absolutely gorgeous here yesterday (after literally weeks and weeks of rain) so we also went for a nice walk to enjoy the sunshine. Then finally, our little trio had dinner out at an awesome new Korean BBQ restaurant I’ve been meaning to try for a while! Not a bad weekend at all.

 

In other news, we also had Penny’s 12 month wellness checkup — juuuust a few weeks late, since I didn’t make her appointment in time, lol. Well, actually, I tried to make it like a month before her birthday, but between all the back-to-school physicals and the fact that September is the most popular birth month, a month was not long enough, haha. So, hey, it was more like a 13 month checkup, and since she had been sick, she didn’t even get her shots (she’s going to get them when we go back next week to follow up on her ear infection.)

 

But the good news is that she’s doing great, hitting all her milestones and continuing to dominate the percentile charts! She weighs 22 lbs, 11.3 oz, and is 32 inches tall, which puts her in the 99th percentile for height! (She’s 83rd for weight.) We love our giant girl!

Happy Monday everyone! Here’s hoping we have lots more great weekends like this one on the horizon, because this week is gonna be a doozy. Lots and lots to do, tons of work (including two events), I gotta take my car in to be serviced (something’s wonky with my brake fluid sensor… hopefully… otherwise something’s wrong with my brakes and that would be worse), and I’m trying to start the month off strong fitness wise (I’m doing barre today and have personal training tomorrow.) Plus, therapy tomorrow, two playdates for Penny, and we’re having my parents over for dinner too because, you know, I’m a crazy person. Whew! Better get started!

Poor Penny

Man, I should be buying stock in Lysol after this past weekend. It’s basically plague-central at the Fox house.

Penny caught the dreaded Hand, Foot, & Mouth Disease from daycare (it’s not super serious, but super contagious and super uncomfortable), and when I brought her into the sick clinic at her pediatrician’s office this morning, they not only confirmed that but also informed me that she has an ear infection to boot!

 

As long as she’s got some Motrin in her system, the HFM hasn’t precluded her from eating or drinking yet — something I’m very thankful for, since that’s the real danger of the disease (they can get little sores in their mouth / throat which makes them not want to eat or drink anything, and then they get dehydrated). I picked up some Pedialyte pops just in case though.

And as if it’s not bad enough to have a sad, sick, unable-to-communicate little baby, I, too, have been feeling pretty under the weather. I’ve been feeling pretty rundown since well before Penny’s symptoms showed up though, so hopefully it’s a whole separate thing (I only say hopefully as I hear that HFM is much worse for adults if they catch it.)

I haven’t been sleeping very well, and have woken up with a sore throat for a few days now. Bleh. So this weekend involved a lot of rest and a lot of lounging and a lot of sleeping — for pretty much all of us.

I’m very thankful Sean was willing and able to take on the brunt of Penny-care over the weekend, as I spent most of Saturday in bed.

This week I have far less of that luxury however, as things are speeding up work-wise now that we’re at the end of the month, end of the quarter, and heading into Fall / holiday season. Not that I’m complaining about that last one — the last few months of the year are my FAVORITES! I can’t wait to get to experience all the fall festivals and holidays and whatnot with Penny (especially considering she was just a little lump at this time last year, lol.)

Anyway, think quick-healing and healthy thoughts for Penny as we try to make it through this week, and hopefully I’ll have better news to report next time!

Toddler in the House!

WHY, HELLO THERE!

YOU MAY BE WONDERING WHY I AM SHOUTING AT YOU THROUGH YOUR COMPUTER (OR MOBILE BROWSER).

WELL SOMETHING EXTREMELY AMAZING AND EXCITING AND INCREDIBLE AND AWE-INSPIRING HAPPENED BETWEEN THE LAST TIME I SAW YOU ALL AND NOW, AND I STILL HAVE NOT RECOVERED EMOTIONALLY.

Ugh, Mom, you’re so embarrassing.

Do you find yourself asking, Hmm, Gretchen, what could that thing possibly be? Weeeeeeeell, no big deal or anything, it was just PENNY’S FIRST STEPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Hopefully the video collage thingy I tried to make works, but if not, you can see the proof on my Instagram feed as well, haha. But yes! It’s happened! It’s happening! Gahhhh! I’m not sure if she already qualified after turning one, but there’s definitely no denying that we have a TODDLER in the house now! I’m just a tiny bit excited.

Sean and I have been trying to practice walking with her more, by sitting across from each other and guiding her to each other, and then out of the blue on Monday she just stood up out of Sean’s lap and toddled right on over to me! And I know it wasn’t a fluke because I made her do it like eight more times so that I could capture it on camera, hahahahaha.

Man, it really has been a big week for our little nugget. Two brand new teeth AND her first steps? No wonder nights have been a little on the, er, difficult side lately. She certainly slept like a rock that night though!

And if it weren’t enough for her to take her first steps a zillion times Monday night, I was most definitely not prepared for what happened yesterday when I dropped her off at daycare. She was standing against my legs as I was putting her backpack in the closet, when her daycare teacher came over to greet her. And suddenly, she just lets go of me and waltzes on over to Miss O. like she’s been walking her whole life. Whaaaaat???

 

In other fun developmental news, she also started doing this thing yesterday where she waves SUPER excitedly at herself anytime she sees herself in the mirror. She did it in the morning when I was getting her ready, and at daycare they told me she kept doing it throughout the day there too. Babies are so much fun!

Anywho, all that excitement aside, today’s gonna be a busy one. I’ve got a full slate of calls, a lengthy to-do list, and a work event tonight. Definitely the kind of day that can easily make me feel overwhelmed, so I’m off to the gym with my little toddling bean to work out a little bit of my anxiety. Cross your fingers for me that I’m able to make today productive!

Weekend Update: Birthday Party, OTF, and New Teeth!

Happy Monday, friends!

I hope you all had restful weekends! Well, those of you who were in the path of Hurricane Florence, I can’t imagine you’ve had much rest, and I hope you and your homes are all okay! We thought we were in for a major drenching this weekend, but storm ended up shifting south and it was actually very mild (if humid) up here.

  

On Saturday, Penny and I went to celebrate the first birthday of our little friend Jonathan! I met his mom Anna through the Peanut app (which is basically like Tinder for Moms), and we became fast-friends. I’ve had tons of luck making new friends on both Peanut through local Mom-groups on Facebook — I went in pretty hard trying to meet other mamas with similarly aged babies when I was on maternity leave — and feel super lucky that I now have such a strong little tribe of amazing new moms to celebrate, panic, and generally commiserate with. 🙂

Of course, along with having similarly-aged babies, comes the fact that we’ve pretty much got a first birthday party to attend every Saturday from August through October, gahahaha. Guess this is the new normal I should start getting used to though, huh? I’m sure it’ll only get more crazy once Penny’s in school.

Aside from all the birthday party fun, I also hosted a Fitness event for Yelp this weekend at Orangetheory Fitness. A few of you had recommended I look into OTF when I started working out, and I see why! It was a hard workout for sure, but a lot of fun and there was a lot of camaraderie in the workout. My favorite part was definitely being on the floor doing the weight training, since that’s what I’ve been into at the gym myself, but the parts on the treadmill and rowing machines definitely pushed me way harder in terms of cardio, which is probably something I should be making more of an effort in regularly.

The science-y aspect with the heart rate monitors and everything was very cool to see, also. I actually just upgraded my old Fitbit Flex 2 to a Fitbit Alta HR so that I can have heart rate monitoring too, so that I can not only see if I’m exerting appropriate effort for maximum results, but also so that I can just keep a pulse (pun intended) on my ticker! This is the kind of stuff I so did NOT care about before, when working out and eating clean were both just a means to get smaller, but now that my goal is less superficial (at least, it’s not wholly about lookin’ good anymore, haha) and more, like, to make sure I live long enough to see my grandkids and stuff, heart health suddenly matters a lot more to me! Go figure.

In other news, Penny has officially sprouted both of her top teeth! So that brings our total tooth count up to four! And also explains why the past week has been hell on wheels in terms of sleep disruption, her appetite’s been a little off, she’s been fussy, and, you know, just all that fun stuff that comes with teething.

 

 

We’ve been doing a lot of cuddling (which, okay, I feel bad for her but also she like, never wants to cuddle with me anymore so it’s been kind of amazing?!) and watching The Furchester Hotel on Netflix (Penny’s fave). She’s also been snacking a lot over the past few days (hasn’t been as patient sitting down for her meals), which means the dogs are actually paying attention to her.

And that catches us up on the weekend! I’m headed into the office today, and my poor sleepy, teething baby (who may also be going through a growth spurt and/or maybe is getting sick? lol) slept from 7 to 8 last night (!!) so I woke up before her (for once), and was able to do my hair AND makeup this morning! Like a real human!

I’d also made time this weekend to get an eyebrow wax for the first time in months, so I’m def feeling myself right now, hahahaha. And with that final little burst of vanity, I’ll bid you adieu. ‘Til next time!