C's One Month

- Camden can lift his head and swivel it all around.  
- He's learned to focus on things close up without crossing his eyes too much, and he can see things from fairly far away too.  
- He discovered he likes to suck on his fists and anything else that dares get too close to his mouth.  
- Best of all, he's learned to smile in response to his mom and dad's smiles.  Our favorite it his crooked smile with one eye scrunched up.

What he likes:
- He likes to be bounced.  
- He likes to hear his daddy sing silly songs.    
- He likes both of his grandmas because they always know just what to do to calm him or get him to fall asleep.  
- He loves the fan.  Especially when it moves slowly.  He and the fan will have staring contests for ten minutes straight.  
- He likes waking up at 5am for the day.  That's too early for us, but he won't go back to sleep unless we bring him to snuggle in bed with us.
- He likes his carseat and takes his best naps in it.

What he doesn't like:
- Being left alone {or thinking that he's been left alone, anyway}.
- Baths.
- When Mom suddenly sneezes while he is half asleep and nursing.

Funny Things:
- Camden snores occasionally.  
- He has given several people hickies on their arms, hands, and chins.  
- Sometimes he farts so loud he startles himself.  He throws his arms and legs straight out and looks around like, "What was that?!"  
- The force of his own sneezes causes him to smack himself in the face with both hands.  He doesn't seem to mind.
- When he's eating {or even just thinking really extra hard} he puts his pointer finger up against his temple.  This happens seriously almost every time.
- A few weeks after he was born he lost a lot of his hair on the front park of his head, but it's really thick in the back.  Roy is a little self conscious for him. ;-p
- Whenever he is smiling like crazy and a camera emerges, he promptly assumes a grumpy face.
- He does have, however, countless funny expressions.  My favorite is the Zoolander face:

In one month he lost one pound and then gained two.  Every day he seems to be getting bigger!

Gust of Peppermint

2012 made a stealthy exit this year.  Granted, we were a little distracted with a brand new lifestyle, but I felt like the Christmas season really blew past us in a gust of peppermint.

The week before the big day my parents and siblings went on a Caribbean cruise that had been on the calendar for almost a year.  Originally it was supposed to be a "last hurrah" trip for the Colletts--"last hurrah" being defined as a final family vacation before any other members are added to the family by birth or marriage.

Yeah... they got reimbursed for mine and Roy's tickets- ha!

Of course we'd pick Camden over a cruise every time.  Duh, not even a question.  But we would have loved to take him to the Caribbean for his first vacation. ;-)  Luckily he didn't mind settling for his first sleepover at Grammy's house instead.  We stayed to take care of Rambo, the family dog.

While the family was gone we went Christmas tree shopping and set it up, filling the house with the scent of pine and ready for when everyone got home on Christmas eve.

On Christmas eve the family was back, we were all snuggled in our matching Christmas pajamas, and we were putting our new 2012 ornaments on the tree, when I remembered this would be the last year that we would be with my family.  Next year, with a mobile one-year-old, we will be starting our own traditions.  Maybe I'll get us our own matching Christmas pajamas!  It's an exciting prospect, but it also made me feel all mushy and sentimental as we all watched A Christmas Story together.  Love my fam.

Aaand I love my little elf!

We had a big breakfast, emptied our stockings, and exchanged gifts before celebrating Roy's birthday.

Then, as we do every year, we went to Grandma and Grandpa Reay's for some yummy Mexican eating with our cousins/aunts/uncles.  Camden met a lot of new people, and he had more to meet once we got home!

Roy's parents and sisters came to visit!

Having the Buckmasters with us for the week spoiled us like crazy!  At the slightest sign of discomfort Camden had three aunts and a grandma jumping up to soothe him.  I always had someone to hand him off to when I had to get something done.  The baby got to sleep in the arms of someone who loves him at all times.

I was also able to leave the house without Camden for the first time, since we had plenty of people willing to babysit.  We went to Winterhaven to see Christmas lights,

we went on a tour of the copper mine down the street {I missed that last time},

and we even saw a movie.  Camden actually joined us on that one, and he did pretty well.  Les Miserabl├ęs was his very first movie experience.  Even though we were on the second row he slept through almost the whole movie.  It wasn't until the guns started going off that he woke up.  He didn't like the guns much.

We spent one evening at my parents house celebrating Roy's birthday all together.  Mom made him apple cobbler, one of his most favorite desserts.

We spent an afternoon with Jamie's family {Leah's husband} which was really fun.  Plus we had Zac take some Buckmaster family pictures in the desert.

One of my favorite parts of the week was Camden's baby blessing at church.  I've grown up seeing countless babies blessed by their fathers or grandfathers in sacrament meeting.  It was absolutely surreal to see my own baby up there with all the men I love most around him.  It was very special.  And he looked very cute.

Camden already misses his grandparents and crazy aunts.

I hope everyone had a merry Christmas.  What was my favorite gift this year?  Let me tell you...

Late Christmas night Roy and Camden and I were hanging out with Kirsten on her bed.  We were cooing at Camden and being ridiculous {babies bring it out in you} when he suddenly broke out in a huge open-mouthed grin.  It was different from his little gassy smiles.  His eyes were locked on Roy's, he was very aware that his daddy was talking to him.  Just a moment later he locked eyes with me and gave me a giant smile too.  He loves us!!!

Now we know exactly what to do to get that grin: tickle his checks, look in his eyes, and talk to him in an excited, high-pitched voice.  He just loves us loving him, and it's the sweetest feeling ever.

So This is Parenthood

Camden peed on Roy.  Soaked him!  We were bathing him in the kitchen when the stream shot into a perfect arch, made some serious distance, and splattered all over Roy's shirt.  We were so shocked, we didn't do anything but wheel our arms in the air and laugh/scream while Roy just absorbed it all.

A lot of people have asked us how we are adjusting to parenthood.  Let me tell you, it's a major lifestyle change.  Sometimes we feel like we don't know what we're doing.  But honestly, I'm loving it.

Being up at 3 am every morning isn't easy for me.  In fact, Roy has to practically slap me across the face to wake me up when it's time to feed Cam.  Apparently I've become a remarkably heavy sleeper since having a child.  But when I do finally wake up, a thrill goes through me.  A thought of: Oh yeah!  We have a BABY!

Bliss is the best word I can think of to fit the feeling.  It's not that it isn't difficult or that I don't occasionally get spit-up down my back, but all of that is overshadowed by the smell of his hair, his silky soft cheeks, the way he stares at me or responds to the sound of my voice, and knowing how fleeting this time is.  Newborns are only newborns for a breath, and I'm clinging to every moment.

Who knows how long he will snuggle like this.

I think it's been a little harder than Roy expected.  Harder in that he can't get as much done.  Like me, Roy always wants to be holding him and playing with him, but sometimes it's hard to be typing up papers at the same time.

Roy is a great daddy.  He took the opposite roll and became an incredibly light sleeper.  A peep gets him up out of bed and checking on the little guy.  It's not unusual for me to wake up with Camden having joined us in bed.  We actually love having him sleep in bed with us, but we're trying to leave him in the pack n' play now.  It's a challenge for Roy.

It seems like a lot has already changed or progressed since the day we got home from the hospital.  On that day the Tietjens had decorated, welcoming Camden home.  They even left us chocolates and sparkling cider.  Other friends and family brought us flowers, meals, and gifts for Cam.

The best was having Mom there to help out.  Healing from a c-section is serious business, and I don't think I would have healed as quickly without Mom being there and taking the baby for those first few nights.  She's an angel.

Okay and I have to include this cute picture of the grandpa.

After Mom left and Roy was at school and I found myself doing this on my own, there was the pull to feel overwhelmed.  There were times he would cry and I honestly didn't know what was wrong or how to make it better.  You wonder if you're doing this whole parenting thing completely wrong.

But there's not enough time to dwell on those kinds of things!  There's snuggling to be had!

And now that Roy has a little bit more time {although he still has papers to write} we are venturing from our home just a little.  Today we took him on his first walk.

And on Thursday I think I'll take him on a quick trip to Babies R Us.  Woo!  Pack the diaper bag, we're getting wild!

Getting to Know Camden

Babies come pre-programmed with a personality.  Since Roy finished his finals a few days ago, our little family has hunkered down at home and been loving the chance we have to get to know our new addition.

We quickly learned that Camden is muy fuerte.  This kid is hitting the gym when I'm asleep, I swear.  I mean, most people can feel safe turning their backs on their newborn for a moment when he or she is up on a bed or changing table.  Not us!  Camden tries to catapult himself into the air with his crazy flailing legs!  We're constantly keeping a close eye on him.

Mr. Muscles was holding his head up when he was still in the hospital!  While this amazed many-a-nurse, I rationalize that he arrived late.  He was pretty much born a three-week-old.  By now {at truly three weeks} he's mastered holding up that bobble head and swivels it around with ease.

Speaking of swiveling... once when I was burping him after a feeding, he swiveled right around and latched his mouth onto my chin.  He started to suck away like my chin was going to produce something tasty.  Ha!  I thought it was pretty funny so, naturally, I got out my phone and started taking pictures.

It wasn't until that night when I was getting ready for bed that I noticed the purple hickey he'd given me on my chin!  Whaat?!  Now I avoid that suction hose.  He's given himself a few hickeys on his own arms, which makes it look like his parents beat him.  Fabulous.

Camden has many facial expressions that I love.  My favorite is always so fleeting that I haven't caught a good picture of it yet.  As soon as I do I'll be sure to post it, but how about a description to hold you over?  He makes a perfect, tight little "o" with his lips and looks around all wide-eyed.  Ah, melts my heart every time.  That and his smiles.  He happens to think I'm hilarious.

I also think he's hilarious.  We just sit around and make faces at each other.

His most frequent expression is one that Roy calls his "Curmudgeon Face."  And let's be honest, it does make him look like a cranky old man.

He prefers sucking on our fingers to a binky.

Or like The Brain.

The only thing funnier than his facial expressions: his sleeping positions.  His arms either have to be over his head

 or straight up in the air.  Totally normal, right?

Camden has his mom and dad completely wrapped around his little finger.  We think every tiny thing he does is a sign of genius.  Even a burp is enough to merit "ooo"s and "aww"s.  Our iPhone storage is maxed out with video and pictures.

The fact is, no matter what kind of tiny personality is in there, we will love him.  It's a complete unconditional love like I've never felt before.  And it's made me think; it must be how God feels about us, His children.  You know, loves us even without us doing anything to earn it.  Loves us just because we are His.

Being a parent, loving on our little boy, catching a glimpse of God's love for us, is bliss.