Introducing Margaret Esme

For a while, I held off on writing a post about Maggie or anything at all for this blog. It’s been hard to find the time. But now Maggie is two months old and I want to share about her.

Also, I didn’t know what to say. Honestly, I felt sort of embarrassed about the circumstances surrounding her birth. She needed to be born early by C-section unexpectedly and I didn’t feel ready.

She was born three weeks early on Friday morning, December 14.

I had a doctor’s appointment that Tuesday and was told that I was showing signs that I could go into labor. However, the baby was breach so unless that changed, I would need a C-section.

You see where this is going? It’s not that simple though. I never went into labor. That’s not why she needed to be born early.

I had been going to the pare-natal center at the hospital because of a condition having to do with my thyroid. The baby’s heart rate went down too low on two different days, the second time being two days after that doctor’s appointment I just mentioned. A quick ultrasound showed the baby was still breach and now the amniotic fluid was too low, much lower than two days before.

After more testing and hospital staff communicating with my doctor, I was admitted for a C-section to be performed by my doctor appointment the next morning.

That wasn’t what I was expecting either. I was lucky enough to get an amazing surgical team. They were friendly and kind. The needle in my back didn’t hurt much. I felt a little out of it when she was born. The surgery was quick but recovery was long. I got good nurses for recovery too though. They helped me walk again. I had Paul’s help when we got home too.

The breastfeeding class I signed up for was the night I was admitted. I was admitted early afternoon and therefore couldn’t go. I hadn’t ordered my breast pump yet either.

I hadn’t decorated the nursery yet. At least we had the changing table/dresser combo and bassinet ready.

We didn’t have the car seat installed either. My husband was planning on doing that in a few days because he had an appointment for a car seat inspection at the hospital. Instead, he got in contact with our local police department and the police chief himself checked to see if Paul installed the seat correctly on the day we went home.

We could have been more prepared. But it’s okay. Our early bird baby girl is happy and well loved. She’s more than we expected in a lot of ways.

Maggie is such a sweetheart. She loves cuddles, looking at faces and listening. At 10 weeks now, she is doing a lot of smiling and making expressive noises. She bats the toys on her activity gym and lately she likes staring at patterns, such as the zig zag pattern on her car seat. She’s playful and curious.

She is named after my aunt who died of breast cancer not long after I found out I was pregnant. She was a great person. Very loving, generous, loyal and independent. Maybe it’s because I try to, but I think I see her in Maggie.

Thank you all for your love and support. We’re grateful to have such a good community of people around us.

Baby shower playlist

Hello Kitty DJ

In about 5 weeks, it’s my baby’s due date. It’s finally the home stretch! I can hardly believe it. Except, I can because pregnancy is long and although I may never feel totally ready for the baby, I’m ready enough.

I still haven’t said anything on here about my baby’s name or sex, but I might as well tell you now. It’s no secret. I was just trying to decide when and how to tell people.

Paul and I found out at the last ultrasound that we’re having a baby girl. We’re naming her Margaret Esme Rosales. Margaret is after my Aunt Peggy (her birth name was Margaret), who died earlier this year. We’re calling her Maggie for short. Esme is a middle name I found after looking through a lot of baby name lists online. It means beloved in French, which makes it perfect.

To celebrate Maggie, my family and Paul’s family threw us a baby shower. My mom, two sisters, his sister, and my mom all did an amazing job. It was so sweet.

The theme was Peter Rabbit. I wanted that theme because I have fond memories of my dad telling me the Peter Rabbit story by heart and when I worked at an early childcare center in the infant room I would read a story board book version to the babies.

For my part, I wanted to make a short playlist for the party. My family parties don’t usually have music. I’m not sure why exactly but that’s just how I grew up. Maybe it helped us talk to each other more than otherwise. I like music for parties though, so I made a baby shower playlist for the quieter parts of the party.

The thing is, I totally forgot to play it! Not until the guests had left did I remember that I forgot about the playlist. I had even just been listening to it and editing it that morning.

This playlist is a mix of songs from my childhood that my dad used to play, songs I listed to as I grew older, and newer family-friendly songs that compliment the rest.

It’s hard for me to pick my favorite songs on the playlist. A few are my favorite songs of all time. Others are songs by my favorite artist, although not my favorite by that artist. The standout songs are Chelsea Morning, At the Zoo, Who’s My Pretty Baby, and Home.

What do you think of this playlist? What are your favorite family and kid-friendly songs?

If I’m being honest, I have played some songs with unfit lyrics for Maggie while she’s been in the womb. She kicks the most while hip hop or rock and roll are playing, particularly Missy Elliott. She also has a favorite song off her dad’s new album that he’s been working on. (You can listen to some of his music here.)

Image via untitledba on Tumblr.

Our wedding look

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I thought I would share a bit more on our wedding vision, vintage romantic, and how it played out in the overall look. I was inspired by a few things from the beginning of the planning process: our cake topper, our wedding rings and my parents’ wedding photos.

We had found our cake topper way before the wedding and before we were close to being engaged. The cake topper couple sort of looks like us. I saw it in an antique shop when Paul and I were wandering around The Orange Circle. I think that was when had been together for a year and a half or so. I don’t remember exactly. I told Paul how much I liked it and he went back to buy it a few days later.

Our wedding rings and my engagement ring were rose gold rings from Andrea Bonelli, a small business that uses recycled metals and ethically mined stones.

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Our wedding day

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It’s been almost a year since I got married and I still haven’t shared details or photos on the blog, so I figure now is as good a time as any. If for no other reason, I thought it would be nice to write a bit about what the day was like so I can look back on it later.

I’m so happy with how the day turned out and glad we got to celebrate our vows with family and friends. Before we got engaged, we had talked about possibly having a courthouse wedding to avoid the planning and expense of something bigger. But I really wanted a wedding with our extended families and friends. I didn’t want to get married without my cousins, aunts, uncles and close friends there. Paul would have been okay with a small courthouse wedding, but in the end he said he was very glad we had everyone celebrate with us.

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What’s new in 2018

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So, I haven’t posted anything in a year and a half. I fell off the grid. But I can never stay away forever. I wish I hadn’t left.

I miss blogging. It gives me a reason to write, take photos, and plan recipes, all things that I’ve loved doing since I was a kid. I want to continue and not let life get in the way.

What have I been up to? Well, I got busy with wedding planning, finishing a family cookbook, the wedding and honeymoon, followed by a new job, and, more recently, moving. I also took two classes at a nearby college during this time, one in person and one online. This past spring, my husband, Mom, and I went to visit relatives in Boise, one of my favorite places to be. That’s what’s been happening with me since I last blogged. I also got pregnant in April. As I write this, I’m about 5 months pregnant.

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Santa Cruz, CA: Travel guide

Ocean view Hi there! I’m so excited to share with you my travel guide to Santa Cruz, California. As you may know, back in November Paul and I went to Santa Cruz on a road trip. We only spent about three days there (two nights), but we got a good feel for the city. This trip will always hold a special place in my heart because it’s when we got engaged.

We had both been to Santa Cruz before but not together. I visited once on a road trip up the coast with my sister Katie and our aunt Grace.

I hope to go back again sometime, so I included a short list of places I want to go next time.

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5 years of dating

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My fiance and I have been together for five years now as of today. We’ve learned some about committing yourself to another person and grown as individuals in the process. We’ve also had a lot of fun.

To commemorate the occasion, I thought I would share five ways I show him I love him:

1. Say I love you.

He knows that I love him, but I still remind him every day by just saying so. There are some days that I forget to say so before he goes to work, so I’ll text him “I love you” instead.

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Wedding food

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I guess I like the idea of options because all my favorite food ideas for the wedding involve the words “bar” or “buffet.” I’d be totally fine if the wedding ended up with just one of these elements. But I thought I would just share some food images that have been inspiring me in the planning process. People say you barely have time to eat on your wedding day and that time flies by. Even so, I think it could be cool to serve our guests some of our favorite foods like dougnuts, tacos, craft beer, and juices.

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Proposal photos

 

I’ve been away from this blog for a little bit and I forgot to announce on here that I’m engaged. Yay! My guy proposed when we went on our road trip up to Capitola and Santa Cruz.

We’re planning on getting married next fall. I’ve started planning already.

If you’re reading this, you’ve probably already heard the news because I blasted it on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter a month ago. I hope you don’t get sick of me talking about wedding stuff. I’ll still post baking, cooking, and the occasional fashion post on Modern Notebook. But I’ll also happily share wedding planning updates too.

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How to pack for a California road trip

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Packing for a road trip in California can be a bit tricky. I suppose that goes for any destination or road trip but I know this to be true from much experience on California road trips. The weather can be quite varied, especially if you’re going from inland to a beach city or the mountains, and so on.

I did so many trips up and down California when I was in my formative years that I’ve lost track of how many exactly.

I remember my middle sister and I going on our trip with or parents to see the Sequoia National Forest when I was a surly pre-teen. I went up to Sacramento twice to visit family around the same time period. My family went on several trips to visit my brother in Washington when I was in junior high and high school. Most were by plane, but I once road-tripped it up with my parents in a car.

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