a day in the life of an air force family...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

8 months, two teeth, and one Christmas later...

This is our beautiful little girl :)

I can't believe its taken me so long to update, I really thought this was going to be easier to keep up on!! Well let's see, the last update I posted about Ava was in September when she ate her first baby food. So lets re-cap a little.....

In October while it was still nice out, we took Ava for a walk and stopped at one of the playgrounds. This is where she had her first swing ride:

She started to sit up, unsupported:

And of course, her first Halloween (although she wasn't very thrilled with the idea lol):

In November we had our first Thanksgiving as a family. Our friends and neighbors, the Hoar's, are not from Delaware and were unable to go home for Thanksgiving; we invited them to have dinner with us. Whitney and I shared the cooking duties, everything was delicious! Ava even got to eat REAL sweet potatoes lol.

December was a very hectic month for all of us. We have my birthday, Christmas, and our anniversary all within 9 days of each other...plus we were travelling. For Christmas every year we drive to Chris' hometown of Erie and visit all of his family. This year, four days before we were planning to leave, Ava became very sick and was projectile-vomiting everything she ate. Thankfully, the morning we left, she was back to her normal self. She had a little bit of an appetite problem (or lack there of) but in a few days she was eating just fine. This was a particularly special visit: Ava was meeting all (but two) of her relatives from Chris' side of the family. But first, we had my family's Christmas party to go to...all of my aunts absolutely adore Ava and would be more than happy to steal her from us lol.

And here are some pictures from our visit in Erie:

Ava & Chris' dad

Ava & her Great-Grandmother Palmer

The Trimmer's and Palmer's
Four generations of Palmers

Ava & Chris' youngest sister Maryssa
The Martin's and Farbo's

Chris, Ava, & Chris' mom, Lu
Four generations

And when we got home, Chris and I celebrated our 1st wedding anniversary on New Years Eve :) My life has change drastically over the past year: I got married, moved into a beautiful house and made it a home, had the most perfect baby girl anyone could ask for, and have settled into my life of an Air Force wife and stay at home mom. Every morning I thank God for blessing me with an amazing husband who makes this life possible for me.

Oh! And Ava's latest milestone....CRAWLING! Finally!!! I always have problems loading videos here, so it'll be on our YouTube channel, which you can get to from the link on the bottom page. Ava also got her first tooth in December (please excuse the boogies lol):

She is such a special little girl and I am so blessed to have her. She's always happy, smiling and "talking" (by the way, she says "da da" and "na na"). The only time she is fussy is when she's tired, but she always goes right down for her naps. Oh yeah, and she's SUCH a daddy's girl!!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

volunteering and spitting

A few days ago Chris came home with an invite for an OSS Spouses Tower Tour. Spouses of OSS members would meet at the RAPCON, take a tour of the brand new facility and help make care packages for deployed OSS members. (RAPCON stands for Radar APproach CONtrol and OSS stands for Operations Support Squadron.) I decided to volunteer along with my friend and fellow OSS spouse, Whitney. She is married to Josh, who works on the same crew as Chris. They are also work-out buddies *rolls eyes - lol*. Anyway, so last night we went and everyone got a tour of the new facility. The Air Force spent $18.1 million on this new building; the Tower and RAPCON used to be separate but now they are in one building. Dover now has the best Tower/RAPCON facility in the Air Force. The room where Chris works is too dark to take any pictures (they need it to be dark to see the scopes), but I did take some pictures from the Tower...


That is a C-17 taking off, first time I've ever seen one take off! Very cool; they are HUGE and look sooo heavy that you never think they'll actually get off the ground. Then we went out onto the catwalk. There is a little square door in the wall, maybe 3.5 ft x 3.5 ft. And it leads out onto the catwalk which is basically a narrow balcony that goes all the way around the Tower, under the windows. Amazing view!


Also, yesterday I took Ava for a walk around base and stopped at Whitney's house for a visit. Ava was on the floor playing while we sat on the couch and talked. All of a sudden I heard Ava making a noise I've never heard her make before. I look down and she's spitting! Drool all over her face, tongue sticking out, it was so funny! It may not seem like a big deal, but it was to me! I absolutely love it when she learns something new, even if it means I have to wipe her face an extra 100 times a day lol. I took a video today and you can see it on our YouTube channel at the bottom of the page! I also added a link on the right side-bar for the channel :)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

yum yum!

Yesterday we fed Ava baby food for the first time! We gave her apples, and even though it didn't look like she enjoyed the taste, she ate the whole bowl! So we'll give her apples for a few days, then move onto another food when we're sure she isn't allergic :) maybe green beans?? We could have started her at 4 months but she had a little problem with constipation, and I wanted to clear that up before bombarding her little digestive system with anything else. You can see the video at the bottom on our YouTube channel, but here are some pictures of our happy, messy baby :)


Friday, September 17, 2010

let's play a little catch-up...

This blog will be about my little family, I'll update often but here's some history about how we came to be the Palmers :)

Chris and I met in February of 2009 and began dating a short time later. It was definitely what you would call a whirl-wind romance, and I couldn't have been happier. We moved in together and on August 28th, I found out I was pregnant! We had previously discussed getting married, but sped up our engagement and the wedding. During Christmas we drove to Chris' hometown of Erie, Pa, where we found out the baby we were having was a girl. Chris immediately started calling her Ava, and we decided on the family name of Marie as her middle name. After we returned home, we decided to get married on New Years Eve, "New Year, New Life" was our motto :)

We moved into a 4 bedroom house on base, and made a house into a home. We had so much to do, we only had about 4 months until Ava arrived. At 37 weeks my doctor told me that Ava was breech (pointing feet-down instead of head-down). A few days later I checked into the hospital to see if they could manually flip her around, but due to several factors my doctor decided not to try. I was scheduled for a c-section in my 39th week. On April 29th, 2010, our daughter Ava Marie was born!

After three days in the hospital, we went home on my original due date, May 2nd. Unfortunately the next day we had to bring Ava back to the hospital because she had jaundice. She was in the NICU for 5 days.

The contraption between Ava's legs was a make-shift hip brace. Ava was born with hip dysplasia, where the joints of her hips did not form correctly and basically was born with her hips dislocated. The problem seemed to lie in the socket part of the hip. Two weeks after she was born we took her to the amazing children's hospital in our state and she saw the best doctor who specializes in pediatric hip dysplasia. She was put into a more permanent brace...

She had to keep it on for 6 weeks straight, so that meant sponge-baths on the counter lol. We were VERY fortunate that it was spring/summer when she had it on constantly, because we were able to just throw a little sundress on her. As you can see from the picture on the right, pants would just not have worked. So when she was 8 weeks, we were allowed to take it off for one hour  a day, then four hours a day, then finally when she was 10 or 11 weeks we were able to take it off completely, her hips had healed. The brace may have been a pain, but we count our blessings because this condition can end up needing surgery to fix. 

But now Ava is a happy, healthy 4 1/2 month old. The hip dysplasia has not affected her physical development at all, she rolled over from tummy to back the day she turned 3 months. And just a few weeks ago she learned how to roll from her back to her tummy. She has hit all of her milestones; "experts" say that rolling over used to be a 4 month milestone but now has been pushed back to a 5 month milestone because babies are no longer supposed to sleep on their tummies. When I had Ava, the doctors in the hospital said we were not allowed to swaddle her because of her hips (pushing the legs together would cause her hip joints to dislocate). So between no swaddling, and wearing the brace constantly, Ava would never sleep for more than an hour at a time. The only way she would sleep long is if she slept on me or my husband. And thats just not a good-nights sleep for anyone. so finally one night we put her on her stomach to sleep. She slept for 4 hours straight. Hallelujah. So she has had plenty of time to work out her little core muscles.

So now, execpt for a little acid reflux, she is perfectly happy and healthy. I couldn't ask for a better baby; she laughs and smiles all day. I love to watch her look at things and grab them, she's so curious. The first time she actually noticed a toy and reached out to touch it I was so happy! Its so fun watching her learn new things every day.