Ok.  So maybe a few words… :>)  Cole took his first and honest to goodness steps on Mother’s Day morning in front of Kirk and Mr. Vince.  Of course, I was still snoozing (it was Mother’s Day!), and when we tried to get him to walk again, he would only take one or two steps.  The video was taken either the Wednesday or Thursday after Mother’s Day (I can’t remember).  Currently, he prefers to walk everywhere, but he can’t stand up without pulling on something, so if he loses his balance, he’ll crawl to something to pull up, stand up, and continue on his merry little way!


Milestones Galore, Part Un

October 22, 2009

Fall 2009 0107 month update time!  Also, it’s been awhile since I’ve updated about Zoe, so I thought I would give a little update about her as well (it’ll be in the next post).

The new tricks:

cole in quadrupedGross motor: You may have noticed that in all of the pictures of Cole, he’s either lying down or being held, and for good reason – he does not like sitting one bit.  In fact, to Cole, sitting up is his version of tummy time to most babies.  Because of his love for tummy time,  he has been able to get into all-4’s and rock back and forth since Tuesday (10/20).  He really wants to go places, so I fully expect to see him crawling around before Christmas. 

Fall 2009 013Fine motor:  He will grab at anything within reach these days, and if the item he desires is not within reach, he will attempt to manuever, squirm, wiggle, etc his way so that he can.  (This makes meal-times out a LOT of fun.  Since Cole can’t sit in a restaurant high chair yet, he’s either relegated to stay in the stroller, which he despises, or Kirk or I hold him, which means our food is pushed almost to the center of the table, and we have to contend with a baby that only wants to stand and bounce.) 

Social: Cole is the king of raspberries, and he loves playing  mimic games (you raspberry, and then he’ll raspberry). 

New foods: carrots, apples, prunes, bananas, peas.  The carrots didn’t completely agree with his stomach; we’ll try it again at a later date.  He’s also eating 2 meals of baby food these days.  I expect he’ll be eating 3 meals in the next few weeks with the way he scarfs down the food.

The bad: Cole is still not sleeping through the night.  I recently figured out that I’ve had maybe 6 months of 6 hours or more of un-interrupted sleep out of the past 3 years.  I am definitely over this whole not sleeping thing; however, I don’t think Cole is ready to cry it out.  One – Cole is waking up hungry at least once a night and sometimes more than that, and two – I’m kind of worried that he will wake up Zoe in the middle of night as well as wake up our neighbor.  So, we’ll see, but for now, I continue to sleep deprived.

The Good:  I don’t want to leave you on a bad note.  Cole is your typical little baby, which I’m totally not used to.  I thought Zoe was a typical baby, and she was (just quiet and reserved); Cole, however, laughs good belly laughs, “talks” to his mobile when he wakes up in the morning, constantly wants to stand and bounce, and puts everything in his mouth.  I’m really looking forward to see what Cole’s personality is going to be!

Zoe and the 2’s

June 26, 2009

We are all about the number 2 in our house right now: 2 boys, 2 girls, 2 dogs, and Zoe is now 2-years-old!  It’s hard to believe that 2 years ago, Kirk and I became a family of 3 with the addition of Zoe into our lives.  Since then, life has been one big blur of sleepless nights (in the beginning), lots of giggling and tickling, watching Zoe grow up into an adorable (I know, I’m biased!) 2-year-old toddler, and the addition of our 4th family member, Cole!!

Zoes bday  partyTo celebrate her birthday, we invited a few friends and their families out to dinner at Luisa’s Pizzeria, one of our favorite places to eat.  It was actually the first place that Zoe had true “solid” food in the form of pizza crust!  <Zoe and her friends: Kate, Aston, Mia, and Maisie.  Photo courtesy of Anne.>

Here’s a clip of Zoe blowing out the candles on her birthday cake.  Thanks to all the families that joined us!  We had a blast!

Here are the 2-year milestones:

On the Move: Like most 2-year-olds, Zoe is constantly one the move.  She continues to enjoy running and has become very proficient at jumping (including jumping off of the sofa. well, attempting…).  Her favorite mode of locomotion at the moment is galloping.  Also, she has become a little monkey; climbing up, over, and through anything that looks of interest as well as hanging off anything that looks like it can be hung on (i.e. towel racks). 

IMG_2356  Our little monkey hangs from the “high” bar at gymnastics.

Talk, talk, talk: I really think that’s all she does these days, and not just little one word phrases.  She loves to tell me about everything she hears and sees (she’s a bit of a tattletale on Cole, especially with the spit up).  She’s also beginning to remember which way to go when we get near the house – I hear this little voice from the back seat saying, “This way…” or “That way…” and pointing in the correct direction to get home.  Like some of her other friends, she’s beginning to tell stories as well.  The other night, she saw a picture of an owl in a book, and she promptly began telling me about the big owl that she saw in our dogwood tree in the backyard.  Sooo cool…   

Eating: Finally… the girl is eating protein and the occasional veggie!!!  Hooray!  Zoe LOOOVES hot dogs and is now eating the occasional chicken nugget, fish stick, bologna, and turkey.  She also has discovered corn, black olives, pickles, and spinach (cooked, on pizza).  I am sooo glad her plates are beginning to look a little more balanced…

IMG_2622 Zoe and her corn on the cob.

Smarts: Zoe can now “sing” several songs; her current favorites are: Rock-a-bye Baby (Rock Baby Tree), Jesus Loves Me, and Happy Birthday.  She knows the difference between one and two of something.  She’s beginning to learn about big versus little (big bite versus little bite and big doggie versus little doggie) as well as prepositions (up, down, over, under).  She knows when someone is being silly and will tell you that you’re silly, and she’s beginning to make up little games of silliness, such as taking a little bite of something and saying big bite when she knows it’s a little bite.  Her imagination is really soaring these days as well.  She was given a Kai-lan (cartoon character) doll recently, and she promptly began “talking” to it and then going over to her mini kitchen and cooking up some sort of meal that she gave to the doll.

IMG_2256A “game” that she thought was funny.  Not really sure what it entailed, but it made me laugh.

I Do It: Not only does she say this about just about everything; she really does help out quite a bit.  She loves to scoop the dog food into Ollie’s and Zeke’s bowls at mealtime to the point she has mini tantrum that she doesn’t get to help.  She loves to help put her clothes on, take them off, and put them in the laundry.  And, apparently, she helped put back all of the books on the shelves at the YMCA ChildWatch the other day.  Now, if this helpfullness lasts through her teenage years with more involved chores, it’ll be great!!!

Princess Traits: This category is not meant to be a compliment.  Zoe is beginning to act like all other toddlers – she has recently been heard saying, “Hit mommy, Zeke, Ollie, etc” and then promptly hits the designated target.  She also likes to throw herself backwards and attempt to run when picked up against her will (usually at nap time or bed time).  She’s beginning to become prissy – she doesn’t like sand in her shoes or to walk barefoot on sand, and when she falls she’ll go running to the nearest adult for them to wipe her hands off.  Also, she is now a whining pro.  Luckily, we don’t really get the full tantrum melt-downs where the kid will throw themselves on the floor and kick and hit the floor.  Well, not yet anyways…

So, there you have it.  Our love for Zoe and all things related to the number 2!  Zoe, I really can’t wait to see what you have in store for us this year… Happy 2nd Birthday, big girl!!


Craziness Ensues

April 4, 2009

I was planning on writing a 21-month-old update for Zoe in the middle of March, but as I’m sure most of you know, it didn’t happen because Zoe’s baby brother decided to enter the world seven weeks early.  Before going into Cole’s entrance into the world, here’s a couple of pictures of Zoe that I was going to include in her update post:img_2041


Kirk and Zoe pose before the Alston and Bird, LLP Corporate Cup Run.  Apparently, Zoe felt her tiger should go for the run as well.




img_2040 Zoe hangs out in her ride for the run.

 One of 1st warm Spring days, I filled up the water table outside and Zoe had a blast; the water table now has a beach added from her sand box complete with rocks that she’s found lying around in the yard.  She decided that the hat completed her outfit.img_20481img_2055







Cole’s Entrance into the Big, Wide, World:

  img_2065At around 24 weeks of my pregnancy, I was diagnosed with placenta previa.  Basically, Cole’s placenta attached to the lower part of my uterus instead of the upper part and ended up covering the entrance to the birth canal.  No biggie – I was going to schedule a c-section a few weeks early so there wouldn’t be any complications, and the doctors said to expect spontaneous bleeding as I got closer to my due date.  With every bleed (I had 2 after I was diagnosed.), I called the doctor and then went to the hospital to make sure everything was A-OK.  The 1st one was scary (Kirk and I were in DC at the time), but after 6 hours of IV fluids and strict instructions to stay off my feet, we were allowed back to the hotel.  The 2nd one happened around 3:30am on Mar. 13th.  I called the MD, who then said call for an ambulance, which I did.  After being admitted into the hospital, I was told that I would be staying until at least Mon because the MD wanted to do a couple of steroid injections to help speed up Cole’s development, just in case.  Everything was honky-dory; the MD was allowing me to get up to use the bathroom, and they were getting ready to take me off the monitors and send me to the special maternal care ward when I started bleeding again, but this time, it was coupled with regular uterine contractions.  The nurse gave me terbutyline to help slow the contractions down, but I started bleeding again (it’s now around 12am, Mar 14th.)  The MD said enough is enough and decided to do an emergency c-section.  By the time the nurse called Kirk (he was at home to get some good sleep and to help with Zoe), it took the MD 30 minutes to bring Cole into the world.  Here are some pics of Cole’s first few weeks:

img_2094Cole weighed 3 pounds, 13 ounces at birth.  Because he was 7 weeks early, he had to have some help breathing (contraption around his head) with bubble CPAP for about 48 hours, received his fluids by an IV for about a week, and hung out in an incubator for about a week and a half.

img_21031  Yeah!! No more CPAP.  The white “stickers” are leads for his heart monitor; the “heart sticker” is to  make sure his bed stays warm enough, the tube coming out of his mouth is a feeding tube, and the white wire coming out of his umbilical stump is his IV.


Amy holds Cole for the first time.








img_2125img_2126 Proud parents.  Cole is no longer in the incubator!  He also is taking all of his feedings from a bottle or the breast, and only has his heart rate monitor and pulse oximeter leads.

img_2129Uncle Corey meets Cole for the 1st time.

How the time has flown!!

February 28, 2009

img_1489 Zoe, age 15 months

Holy cow!  The last  “milestone” update I did was back in August!!  It seems like yesterday, but in reality, it’s been 6 months since I really mentioned all the cool things Zoe is doing these days.  Here’s the latest:

Communication:  This is probably the biggest change since August.  Zoe is now saying all sorts of words and phrases(but she usually needs a translator).  Her main words: Daddy, Mommy, Ollie, Zeke, cheese, hot dog (dot dog), strawberries (straw), blueberries, grapes (ape), banana (nana), pizza, chips (4-letter s-word), cheerios (cheer), oatmeal, grits (4-letter s-word), french toast (sah toe), shoes, socks, shirt (used for all clothing), hat (dat), slide, sleep, bear, baby, duck, bye-bye, hi, boo, airplane (sane), ball (dall), truck (specific sound, but I can’t phonetically spell it), fork (4-letter s-word), spoon (poon), plate (bate), bowl, cup (sup), up, down, chair, yellow (ye-yo), blue (bu), green (seen), red, pink (pinx), black (back), purple (puple), pasta (pah),  jump (sump), run (un, un, un), bee, Maisie (ze-ze), Kate (date), Mia, Aston (astah), Grace (bace), Kissha (seshah), bus, Gus (us),  Anna, Jack (shack), please (seese), thank you (dank you), pat, love (uv), more, milk (I think it sounds like nilk), water (wah-wah), juice (uce), outside, ride (ide), color (yeyoe-bu), bird, giraffe (raffe), elmo (ya-ya), big bird, Abbey, fish (shah), train (choo-choo).  Her main phrases: All done shirt, shoes, socks, etc (especially if you’re wearing a hoodie or a coat); get down; bear, baby, (anything that is lying down) sleep; this way (dis way); this car (dis sah); pizza, yeah!; bye-bye (and a person’s name); yellow duck (yeyoe duck); yellow bus (yeyoe bus); one more (un ore with 1 finger held up to her mouth), pooh bear.  Animal sounds: Zoe generally uses the animal sound for the name of the specific animal with the only exceptions being bear and duck.  Dog (Uff-uff); Cat (e-ow); Lion or tiger (she roars); Sheep (baa-baa); mouse (eek-eek); horse, zebra, or seahorse (used to be a good neigh, but has now changed to a high pitched squeal); pig (enh, enh); squirrel (similar to the mouse and pig sound); bird (sweet, sweet); elephant (purse your lips together and blow like you’re going to blow through a trumpet mouthpiece); monkey (similar to squirrel sound); snake (sssss…); bunny (enh, enh while moving her arm up and down in the air); panda bear (sounds like baby).  I think I’m missing some, but I think you get the picture.

Motor skills:  Zoe’s gross motor skills have definitely slowed down.  She continues to perfect her jumping and is able to jump with a 2-footed take off and landing, but it’s inconsistent.  She can step down a 2″  to 4″ step independently but prefers to “slide” down stairs if there is more than one step.  She can step up stairs with one-hand-held, but she prefers to climb up on her hands and feet.   She is able to kick and throw a ball, stand on 1 foot for 1-2 seconds, attempts to catch a ball, and walk on a balance beam with 1-hand-held.  I also think that she is part monkey; the girl can hoist herself up onto just about anything she sets her mind to (a little scary at times — we once found her standing on top of the breakfast table).  As far as fine motor skills go, she loves to color and is now trying to draw circles, but really likes to scribble (mostly horizontal).  She is able to do simple shape puzzles by herself and loves to build towers with various types of blocks (wood, duplo, bristle, etc).

Self-help: Takes off shoes, socks, shirts, hats, and unzippered coats independently.  Can put on hats independently.  Will help to put on shirts, pants, shoes, socks, and coats.  (Zoe loves to put on my shirts that are in the laundry and wear them as dresses.)  Can eat with a spoon pretty proficiently and will eat with a fork (takes a while with the whole stabbing thing), but she prefers to eat with her fingers.  Will drink from an open cup if she’s sitting in her high chair.

Cognitive: Zoe loves to please, and one of her favorite things to do is to help.  She loves to give you the dogs’ bowls when they’re all done eating, close the dishwasher (whether we’re done or not), pull the laundry out of the dryer, and wash her bathtime coloring board.  She’s also beginning to really play pretend: she feeds her baby or bear, puts them to bed (puts a blanket over them with their head sticking out, and then gives them a pat), and probably our favorite: she will woof while crawling on her hands and knees, pretending to be a dog.  She’s also imitating “grown-up” activities: sweeping, wiping the table, mowing the grass, and cooking.  Primarily at meal time, we’re beginning to give her choices (such as oatmeal versus cereal, or water versus milk).  And, she can point to the colors red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, pink, and black; she will verbally tell you the correct color about 75% of the time for yellow, blue, red, green, and pink.  We are beginning to see some signs of some feistiness (it’s about time!) – she continues to hit both Mommy and Daddy (usually when she’s tired), and she’s now pulling on the dogs’ fur – sooo… we are now doing time outs, and unbelievably, they work!!  (Thank you Betsey and Denise for your great ideas!) 

We are still doing the tooth count because, well, she doesn’t have all that many.  You can now clearly see 5 teeth (3 upper and 2 bottom); she now has the upper tooth on the left (between the front tooth and eye tooth) and all four molars (but you can’t really see these because they’re just now poking through her gums).  I think she may be trying to cut a couple of more teeth because she’s really chewing on her fingers, but I can never really tell.  

 All in all, the last 6 months have been an absolute blast.  I can’t wait to see what Zoe has in store for us in the upcoming months!!

Zoe, age 18 months, shows off the “outfit” of the day.img_1809

A Little Bit of Randomness

February 6, 2009

Soooo… since I was so late at putting Christmas stuff on the blog, I’m a tad bit behind.  Here are a few things that have been going on.

Inauguration Day/Snow Day: On Inauguration Day, we woke up to around 2 inches of snow.  (I know for a lot of you that’s just a dusting, but here in the Carolinas, it’s definitely a snow day.)  I had a feeling that it wouldn’t be around by the afternoon, so I bundled Zoe up and let her check out her 1st snow.  Needless to say, she didn’t really enjoy it; first, her mittens are too big so they kept falling off; second, her coat prevented her from moving as easily as she likes, and if you put the 2 together, it meant that whenever she fell, she couldn’t get up, which made her mad.  Oh well, maybe next year will be better.




Tagged — First Born Survey: In the blogging world, you can get “tagged” to complete random questionnaires, surveys, etc. so your friends can learn a little more about you.  Here’s a recent one that I completed.  (Denise — a lot of our answers were identical!!)

3. WHAT WERE YOUR REACTIONS? Thrilled beyond belief. I think I did a little jump for joy.
5. HOW DID YOU FIND OUT YOU WERE PREGNANT? Took a pregnancy test at home while Kirk was out of town.
6. WHO DID YOU TELL FIRST? Technically, the dogs. (see #6) Kirk – I told him I had a surprise for him, but when he got home, I “pretended” that I forgot, let him mow the lawn and take a shower. He asked about the surprise, which was a book for expecting dads.
8.DUE DATE? June 18th
9.DID YOU HAVE MORNING SICKNESS? Not really. I think I can count on one hand the number of times I got sick.
10.WHAT DID YOU CRAVE? Never really craved anything, but I really didn’t want anything that had Asian flavor to it.
11. WHO/WHAT IRRITATED YOU THE MOST? I loved being pregnant and didn’t mind the aches, heartburn, sleepless nights, yucky clothes, etc. But I did not like going to the OB twice a week during my last month of pregnancy for non-stress testing.
13. DID YOU WISH YOU HAD THE OPPOSITE SEX OF WHAT YOU WERE GETTING? It didn’t really matter, but I slightly preferred a girl.
17.DID YOU HAVE ANY COMPLICATIONS DURING YOUR PREGNANCY? At our 20 week ultrasound, Zoe had a choroid plexus cyst still present (normal in development, but is generally gone by the ultrasound — it went away eventually).  Received another ultrasound a month later and found out I had low amniotic fluid levels — had to take it easy, receive a couple more ultrasounds, do non-stress testing, and the OB didn’t want me to go past my due date.
18. WHERE DID YOU GIVE BIRTH? Presbyterian Main, Charlotte, NC
19. HOW MANY HOURS WERE YOU IN LABOR? About 8 1/2 hours. I was induced at 7am Friday morning, and Zoe was born around 3:45pm Friday afternoon
21. WHO WATCHED YOU GIVE BIRTH? Kirk (and the nurses/doc)
23. DID YOU TAKE MEDICINE TO EASE THE PAIN? Except for the pitocin and IV fluids, it was au naturelle.
26. WHAT DID YOU NAME YOUR CHILD? Zoe Scarlett Bradley


Nesting: I’m not sure if my hormones were completely out of whack or what, but I decided around November to try my hand at knitting.  I found that I really enjoy it, and I’m starting to get to where I can make things for Zoe without spending a ton of money.  Here are my first 2 completed projects.

1st haircut

September 17, 2008

Pre-Zoe, I was always of the opinion that you wait to cut a baby’s hair for the 1st time until it was in their eyes and bothering them.  My opinion changed when Zoe’s hair decided to grow into a fabulous mohawk/mullet combo – great haircut from the ’80s, not so great for a little girl.  So, I finally took Zoe to Pigtails and Crew Cuts (https://www.pigtailsandcrewcuts.com) for her 1st haircut.  She did great – just sat there looking around while the stylist did a couple of little snips.  She no longer has the mullet, and the mohawk isn’t as obvious since the front was trimmed just a little as well.

Before – I tried to get a profile shot, but of course, Zoe wouldn’t cooperate.

 Zoe got to drive the yellow taxi while getting her hair cut.

Check it out – no mullet!!