Thursday, December 26, 2013

christmas with minden

Last year Christmas was hard for me. I had to return to work from maternity leave for one day of work before heading home for the holidays. I remember tearing up all day long as people would as me about Minden. With all the added stress of traveling with a baby, and having to drive back on Christmas day to work the next day; I just kept thinking about how nice it will be to wake up in our own house on Christmas morning. 

We always do Christmas Eve with Nate's family. Last year Minden was having a rough evening, and I spent most of my evening in a bedroom with her rocking her and nursing. I kept imagining what fun she would be the next year. 

Unfortunately, teething had other plans for Minden this Christmas Eve. The poor little lady was running a fever all day, and spent all of it either rocking with Nate and I. Three "eye" teeth coming in all at once. We loaded her up and still headed out, but she just wasn't in the mood for present opening. Thankfully her fever broke during the night, and she was in a much better mood Christmas morning. 

Nate and I got to enjoy our first night waking up in our own bed on Christmas in over some ten odd years. It was so nice. Minden woke up around 6:30 am and we headed out as a family to see if Santa came. We took our time enjoy a few new toys around the house, while cinnamon rolls baked in the oven.

Minden still did not have much of an appetite, so after four pieces of her roll went to Cooper we opted for applesauce for her instead. We spent the afternoon with both of our families, and made it home in time for bed.

We thought Minden might be walking by Christmas, but her fever seemed to slow her down a little. She will take about three to four steps before falling down. I have a feeling she will be taking off here soon.

We had a nice little Christmas together, and we hope you all did too!

Thursday, November 28, 2013


(Our attempt at a Thanksgiving day photo.) 

Thank you for new beginnings. For a new job closer to home. For friends and family who encourages us to succeed.

Thank you for a little girl who gives wet kisses. Who wraps her arms around my neck and tries to climb up to the very top of me.Who says "there you go" as she hands over something she knows she shouldn't have. For her smile that melts my heart, and her love that is unconditional. And her contagious giggles at the dinner table.

Thank you for the days that are not always so easy. For reminding me there is always room to grow. For pushing me to better myself.

Thank you for a husband who would do anything for "his girls". Who believes in what he does, and makes it his mission to help those in need. Who can not only cook dinner, but also fold is own laundry. For his kindness, and his ability to make the best banana pancakes.

Thank you for our pup Cooper. For the joy he brings to our lives, and for entrusting us with him. For his kisses, snuggles and constant following us around. He is a wonderful companion.

Thank you for our new home and the memories we are making in it. For a sister who loves my daughter like her own, and helps watch her whenever we need. For our family members who've help us out in times of need. For siblings that make us laugh, and nieces and nephews who fill our hearts with joy.

Thank you for this day and all of the days before. Each day is a blessing.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

minden's first birthday party

Get ready for an overload of pictures. You have been warned (in the voice of Danny DeVito from "The Lorax").

Well over a month and half ago, we celebrated Minden's first year of life with our family and close friends. Since she doesn't offer a lot of insight yet on themes for her party, I decided to go with with a Fall theme. Since she is my little October pumpkin.
Her cake was made locally. The top cupcake was marble as well as the bottom layer. The middle layer was apple flavored. Although my Grandfather thought it was fake, it was still delicious.
I kept it pretty simple with decorations. Pink and pumpkins.I had another hay bail, but my Dad's farm cats decided to make a nest out of it in the garage.
Above the gift table I hung all of her month to month pictures. I am so happy I made a point to take those. It's so fun to look back at them.
On the tables I did mason jars with flowers and pumpkins. You can't really see it, but in the bottom those are little orange acorns. A good friend of mine in Iowa City used those when she threw my baby shower just two weeks before Minden was born.

She was spoiled with so many great gifts. We are still having fun playing with them.
She loves to share her food with us. Below is a series of pictures showing just that.

And one final picture with her God parents.
It was a great night with great people. Minden is so lucky to be surrounded by so much love.

I've said it a million times, but I have no idea where that last year went. I remember the long nights, and inconsolable days too. I remember thinking those tough moments would go on forever. Becoming a mom has stretched me, and made me a better person. It's shown me a love that I never new was possible. She has made me a better person. So here's to another year of love, happiness and growth!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

we're back

Hello there! We have missed you! The truth of it is, life got really busy there for a little while. Minden turned one, Nate opened his own practice and we moved into a new home. We finally got internet last Friday, and I am hoping to get caught up on posts in the near future. In the meantime, know that we are well. Minden is growing like a little weed, and Cooper is back sleeping all day on his favorite sofa like he never left it.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

12 months of minden

It's been one whole year since you entered our lives. It really doesn't seem possible, yet you have changed so much in this first year. It's impossible to imagine my life without you. Your hugs, kisses, babbling, waves and toothy smiles just fill my heart up with joy.

My have you changed since you became mobile. You do fairly well playing on your own in the evenings. I like to sit on floor and snatch up hugs and kisses in between your playing.

You love the stairs. Up, up, up you go. Of course one of us is always really close behind you. You are now pulling yourself up on things, but you are a little hesitant of the coming down part.

Things you love: music, dancing, Cooper, Grandpa's tickles, cheerios, saying "uh oh" and dropping something after and playing with all your toys. Things you do not love: car rides, Cooper kissing your face, peas, socks or shoes, being told no and sleeping through the night. That's right little lady you are still waking up once to twice a night for a stop at the all you can eat milk buffet.

Speaking of breast feeding, I am so so thankful at what a good nurser you have been. That was one of mommy's biggest fears coming home from the hospital. 

What an amazing year it's been with you, Minden. I cannot wait to see what the next year brings.


Thursday, September 12, 2013

11 months of minden

Eleven months and you are on the move! You love to get into everything you shouldn't get into. You follow Cooper around trying to catch his tail. You don't have the speed to get him quite yet, but you give him a run for his money.

We moved home to western Iowa this month, so you have had some adjustments. It took you about a week of going to your new daycare to warm up to it. Your dad had to stay in the Iowa City area an extra month to finish up at his job. We miss him like crazy, but Grandma and Grandpa Berger were amazing and took us in. Even Cooper. Aunt Lisa and Grandma Mary Lou both got to spend time watching you before you started at your new daycare. I think it has made us even closer.

You say "ma-ma" when you are upset, and "ba-by", "me" and "da" when you are jabbering up a storm. When I tell you no you shake your head no furiously. You wave bye-bye and hello in the most adorable way.

You continue to be a great eater, and not such a good sleeper. You are still waking up twice a night to nurse.

I cannot believe you are almost one. You are so much fun. Sweet and shy when you get in groups. Funny and talkative when you are in your comfort zone. You have enough sass to last for days, and when you hug me or cuddle it just melts my heart!

Keep growing little lady. You are my world!


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

10 months of minden


Our little social butterfly; you love to be surrounded by people. When we enter a new social situation you approach it with caution, but after a little time you are gabbing along with the rest of us. You have a voice and you love to use it. I love it when you spout of a stream of noise and then giggle. I’m not sure what you are saying, but I am positive it’s just as funny as you think it is. 

You are a wonderful eater, and you now join us at every meal. We are still only doing whole foods at this point. You have definitely mastered the ways of the pincher-grasp the last few weeks. 

Sleep is still the same. You gained another tooth this month, so we went through another rough patch with sleep. Some nights you will only wake up once and others it’s twice or more. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that a full night of sleep is on the horizon. 

Although you are not crawling, you know how to get around. While sitting you will scoot and turn yourself in circles. While lying, you will push yourself backwards or roll to get where you want to go.  Just recently you managed to get yourself from your tummy to sitting up. 

Currently, your favorite toys include a stuffed bunny Grandma and Grandpa Berger got your for Easter (you love holding it by the ears), blocks, balls (working on that throwing arm) and your jumper. Top of the list, however, is Cooper. You love that little dog. 

We continue to fall more in love with our blond haired, blue eyed baby every day. You are our world. Keep growing little one.


Monday, July 8, 2013

9 months of minden


Nine months old already. Where to begin? You are such a joy to be around. We love the nonstop movement of your hands and feet, as well as that big toothy grin.
Speaking of your grin; four top teeth came in at once this month! You were such a trooper. A little more clingy than usual, but you did great. On the downside, I think the teeth are still affecting your sleep. You have been waking up more often again during the night.
Lately you have been rocking tummy time. You disliked it so much for so long I thought the day would never come when you would play happily on your tummy. You roll around the floor to get where you need to go. You are trying to push yourself up on all fours. It’s usually one or the other, but not both at the same time.

Your favorite foods are sweet potatoes, squash, pears and peaches. I tried to give you strawberries this month and you were less than impressed. We are still working on giving you chewable solids without you gagging. You finally chewed up four small pieces of watermelon a few days ago!
Also, you know your name! You turn to someone when they say your name. You are clapping, and mimicking the sounds I make. There are a lot of ma-ma’s happening in our house these days. The other day you even reached for me while you said it. So I’m going to go ahead and mark that down as your first word.

You are still shy with strangers, but once you warm up you can be quite the little ham. You definitely prefer being held by me. Especially when you are in a bad mood.
Cannot wait to see what the next month holds! Keep growing Little.

Also, a bonus picture. I took this photo of Nate and Minden tonight after her bath. They were slow dancing to country music. The usually do this while I am cooking. I LOVE it. Just melts my heart.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

still here!

We are still here, I promise. It's just that summer is flying right on by! A few quick updates...

We headed home the second weekend of June for a friend's wedding that Nate was in. Minden was cutting four top teeth, and I had a terrible sinus infection but we made the most of it. She was a doll and everyone commented on just how cute she is.

We also celebrated Nate's first father's day.I had the three pictures above framed together for his office, and we got him a fire pit. We enjoyed the fire pit with some s'mores this past weekend.

Minden got to meet her cousin Lauren. They were visiting from Maryland, and we are so happy we got to spend time with her and her momma. It was odd seeing Minden as the older baby for once. Usually she is the youngest. She was stealing Lauren's toys and not being so gentle with her touches.

Last weekend, Minden was invited to her friend's second birthday party. She loved seeing all the other kids run around. I can't believe next summer that will be her!

In in the midst of all of the summer craziness we are enjoying her belly laughs, watching her roll all around the floor, learning that strawberries are not her favorite, taking nightly walks and overall just enjoying our life.

The next few weeks promise to be equally as crazy with a wedding and a trip home, but we wouldn't have it any other way!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

8 months of minden

 Eight months old! Wow, that's hard to believe. You have almost been outside of my belly as long as you were in. Now that you are here time seems to be flying.

We have lots of nicknames for you (none of which are Mindy). Your dad likes to call you sweetheart and pumpkin. I call you: little, M, peanut and princess. Mostly little. A boy from your daycare calls you Minden-moobers, and we really enjoy that one as well.

You have been rolling a lot more from you back to your belly, however sometimes you arm get caught when you try to go back. You are also sitting up so well. You have not really been trying to get up on all fours and crawl yet.

You laugh, giggle, squeal, clap and throw fits. You have quite the little personality. You are easily distracted when I nurse. If you hear Cooper moving around it is pretty much a lost cause. Speaking of Cooper he loves to give you toe kisses, and you love to pull his hair.

You like to knock over the blocks after I build them up. You also enjoy "yelling" at my hairdryer in the mornings. As soon as I turn it off you freeze and look me like "what just happened?".

You are still going to bed around 8 pm and waking up once during the night to nurse. You are still eating twice a day. Usually around 3 tablespoons of food now. If I try to give you anything not pureed you usually gag on it. We will keep trying.

You love our family walks as much as we do. You sit back in your stroller and take it all it.

You are beautiful, smart, funny, shy, social and altogether growing too fast! We love having you in our lives, little. Keep growing.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

memorial weekend

Whew! This past weekend flew by. The fun ones always do. We got to spend the weekend at home with family and friends.

This time we decided to try and leave around Minden's bedtime in hopes that she would sleep for the 3 plus hour drive. And she did! However the ride back involved a few tears and Cooper doing the hokey pokey. Whatever makes the baby happy, right?

We spent Friday night and Saturday morning at Nate's parent's house. We got to see most of his family, but missed a few of his nieces and nephews. Nate had a bachelor party Saturday afternoon/night for a wedding that he is in, so Minden and I headed to my parent's house to spend the night. We worked on cleaning out some of my things packed away in the closet upstairs. Minden was pretty happy with some of the toys we found.

Five trash bags later full of notes from high school, broken childhood toys, teeth (yes, for some reason I kept some of my teeth that were pulled before I got braces (what was I thinking?)) and we had only made a small dent in what needed to be done. My sinus' couldn't handle anymore of the dust, so we had to call it good for this trip.

That evening Grandpa Berger took his girls (Mom, Lisa, me and Minden) out for supper, and when got home Minden enjoyed a bath in the sink.

We spent the rest of the weekend catching up and playing cards with my family. Monday morning we headed to the cemetery to hear my Grandpa Berger's name called, and to see my uncle Gerald march.

Great uncle Michael and Grandpa Berger

Growing up I went to this service every year with my dad., so it was nice to be able to attend again this year with my little family.

We made one more final stop back at Grandma and Grandpa Lueth's house for lunch before we headed out. Nate's grandparents Ray and Alice came up, and it was so good to see them. We do look forward to being closer to our family someday.

We are settling back into our routine at home now. Minden is sleeping much better in her own crib, and Cooper is back backing out the deck door at anyone who dares to pass our home.

Monday, May 20, 2013


Nate had another classes this weekend, so Aunt Lisa came to the rescue! Not only did she keep us company, she also brought a pool for us to try out.

We were so anxious to get in and try it out, but water wasn't quite warm enough. So Lisa and I hauled buckets of warm water out to the pool until it was ready. Minden loved the pool and splashing around. Now she refuses to lay back in her tub. What a big girl!

Our girl's weekend together just flew by. We ate out, had frozen yogurt, went to a neighbors graduation party and played our little hearts out. I am so thankful she made the long drive to spend the weekend with us.

The weekends always seems to go so fast. There is just never enough time. However, one thing I do really look forward too during the week are our nightly family walks.

It's the perfect time to catch up on each other's days, and marvel at the cuteness of our child. Of coarse Cooper goes bananas for walks. So crazy that we have to refer to them as "w's" around here unless you are prepared to actually go for one.

Just a tiny little peak into our weekend and Monday evening.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

it's a beautiful night


Tuesdays are usually reserved for yoga, but with no class tonight Minden and I got to spend some extra time with Nate. So we set up camp outside while he took care of some yard work.

She loves being outside. Those big blue eyes light up with excitement as she watches the world around her. So thank goodness it is finally getting nicer outside.

This last picture of Cooper pretty much sums him up. If there is one thing I have learned, it's that you can buy a dog a house with a yard, build that dog a fence so he can roam freely, but you cannot make him leave the deck to enjoy said yard. Oh Cooper...

Monday, May 13, 2013

m & z

 [ minden + zoey ]

A couple weekends back we had some very special visitors. My best friend, Megan, came to see us along with her husband, Zach, and daughter, Zoey. It is always so great to see them and catch up. No matter how long it has been since we saw each other we can always pick up right where we left off.

Megan and I are two peas in pod. We enjoy all of the same things. In high school we were even involved all of the same activities with only a few small exceptions. She was my partner in crime, and I wouldn't have had it any other way.

Now we both have daughters, and they are only one day shy of two months apart. Naturally they are destined to become best friends. 

They were adorable together. We spent our weekend soaking up just how stinking cute they were. They would squawk back and forth, take turns swatting each other and they even shared their toys very nicely. 

I cannot wait to see this little friendship grow.