I'm not particularly sentimental about Valentine's Day, and because a business trip took me away for the day itself a few years ago, Tyler and I started celebrating on the 13th. We realized it was a great way to celebrate our love without feeling like we were totally buying into the commercialism of the day itself, and it had the added benefit of being the halfway point of our wedding anniversary. Plus restaurants are less busy since most people are planning to go out the next evening.
This year we had planned the 13th to be our first post-Stella date night. One of my colleagues at work had generously offered to watch Stella for us, and we had picked a restaurant we had been meaning to try for quite awhile. Beyond the annual tradition, it also seemed a nice way to also mark the end of my maternity leave, with all three of us home together. Alas, it was not to be. All three of us had been playing tag with some kind of cold, and Friday was my day to be laid low by a general sense of ickiness. Instead, we got some spicy fried chicken, watched a few episodes of Michael Palin's Pole to Pole series, and went to bed early.
We've had a few momentous Valentine's Day moments (two years ago, we left for our RTW trip this day), but this one seems special because it's our first with our newest Valentine Stella. You hear about falling in love with your baby, and it's true. I'll find myself just gazing into her eyes some mornings, just transfixed by her sounds and movements. You know it's love when you adore everything from the smiles and squeals to the frowns and the farts.
One of my new favorite Stella pics, taken by Tim while he was visiting. Also known as the "Stellagator" picture
Sarah and Stella on the bouncy ball--the answer to all the world's (or at least 99% of Stella's) problems.
But this experience with Stella has also shown me new parts of Tyler to love as well. During some of the more difficult early days when I was sometimes exhausted, overwhelmed and emotional, he showed such compassion and patience and love. And he's an amazing dad to Stella. I love watching him singing her new songs, flying her around the room, giving her "baby spa" time or bouncing on the ball even though it hurts his knees..and he hates it. She's a lucky little girl to have him for a dad. And I'm lucky to have him as my husband.
An action shot of my valentines!
Beyond the lovefest, we've had a few other photographed moments in the last few weeks:
Some of Stella's cohorts from our midwifery clinic at our monthly get together to commiserate with each other and see how all the babies and new parents are doing. It's pretty ridiculously cute to watch six babies lined up on a couch.
Hanging out with Uncle Tim and Aunt Jeanne who came to visit from the Bay Area. They were both so great with Stella--I know she missed their attention and games after they left!
Stella actually awake on a walk during Tim and Jeanne's visit--generally she sleeps the whole time.
Baby legs! One of the downsides of being a winter baby is we hardly ever get to actually see Stella's body since she's always bundled up. Here she's wearing some new baby legs (baby leggings)--so cute!
Oh, and remember how I mentioned hearing slurping last time? Tim got this video while we were driving around last weekend:
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