Archive for June, 2012

June 20, 2012

My Sweet Peyton,

How in the world are you turning one already?! It seems like just yesterday they placed you on my chest for the first time. What a special day that was, and our lives have been changed for the better ever since! Here are some of our first pictures taken together, by the fabulous photographer Annie Varland! One of our traditions we’ve started for your birthday is to watch your birth slideshow that Annie made when she photographed your birth. What a blessing it is to have all of these wonderful pictures from your first moments of life! We plan to relive your birthday every year in this way. It makes me tear up every time I watch it!

I have already seen you change SO many lives in one short year! Your daddy, who wasn’t sure what he was going to do with a little girl, has become the perfect “Girl Daddy” (as I knew he would!). You have brought out a side of him that I had never seen before. I think God knew he needed a little girl to melt his heart in a way that only little girls can. He looks at you with such love, and is always excited to see his “little munchkin” when he comes home from work. He gave you every bath until you were about 3 months old, which no one could believe! He laughs when you splash in the water with your arms and legs, and tries really hard to not get water in your face. He is also the professional when it comes to combing your hair. He takes his time, making sure it is perfect. He has been known to stick a bow in your hair that matches your outfit. I don’t know many other Daddies that take such a vested interest in their daughter’s hair, so I think you are one lucky little girl. Your dad ALWAYS wants to see you. When we get to go out on date nights and you stay at Grandma and Grandpa’s, your daddy almost always tries to talk me into going and picking you up afterwards. As much as I want to see you, too, I know you’re already sleeping soundly and I don’t want to wake you. It is so sweet to see how much he loves you and wants to spend time with you – and I’m pretty sure you’ve had him wrapped around your finger since the day you were born! I have overheard him say on more than one occasion, “I fall in love with you more and more every day!” And you know what? That makes me fall in love with HIM more and more every day. We are very lucky to have him in our lives.

Your Grandparents have been changed for the better because of you, too. You are the highlight of family dinners at the Hamberg’s (now we also have Blake to look forward to!). Grandpa Mike and Grandma Colleen love seeing you and watching all of your new tricks. Grandpa Mike always greets you with, “How’s that Peyton?!” and wants to see you do “So Big.”  Grandma Colleen likes to sing you songs that she knows from the preschool where she teaches music. Grandpa “Roo” (since you have two Grandpa Mike’s!) and Grandma Betsy just can’t get enough of you! You get to spend every Friday with Grandma during the school year, and she says it is the highlight of her week. I think she has just as many toys and baby gear items at her house as we do at ours, which cracks me up. When they haven’t seen you in a few days, I can always count on a phone call from the Ruwe’s to get their “Peyton Fix.” You are so lucky to be so loved. I am just thankful that we are able to live close to all of your Grandparents and your Aunt Krissy and Aunt Mandy (who also love you to pieces!). Too bad Uncle Brad lives all the way out in L.A., but someday it will pay off when he can take you to Disney Land! 🙂

And last but not least, you have changed MY life in so many ways! I always knew I wanted to be a mom. I was obsessed with baby dolls from an early age (just like you!), babysat every chance I could get, and loved my students in my 1st grade classes like they were my own. I couldn’t wait until the day that I would become a mom! When that day finally came a year ago, my main goal in life came true and I cried SOOOO many happy tears! (Yes, I know I look all puffy and emotional in your birth pictures, but that is only because I was so over the moon with JOY!) If I had written down my “hopes and dreams” for a future baby, you would have met all the requirements and more! You have been such a sweet and happy baby. Everyone that meets you comments on how good you are, and you have greeted everyone with a big, gummy (now toothy!) grin. You love to talk, and are the only baby I have met that prefers to whisper over talking loudly. Your favorite words or phrases these days are “Yeah!” and “What’s that?” It cracks me up that you point to everything and ask, very inquisitively, “What’s that?” You are so observant and love to take everything in. I am amazed at how we seemed to understand one another even before you could talk or understand what I was saying. Now that you are older, we have such a fun and silly relationship. I know that you understand what I say, and I can’t wait until you start talking more. (Even though Grandma Betsy says that if you’re anything like me when I was little, you’ll never shut up!)  I smile and laugh with you every day. When I look into those baby blue eyes of yours, I feel like I’m peering into your sweet little soul. I know we have a special bond, and I can’t wait for that to develop more as you get older.

There is nothing I look forward to more than having our special time before you go to sleep at night. You are always full of smiles as I change your diaper and put on your PJ’s. We then read a book or two. When you were only a few months old, you would start to suck on your lips and tongue while I read to you. I loved that little slurpy sound you made! Now you prefer to help me read by lifting flaps in flap books and turning the pages for me. You also point to the bookshelf after each book as if to say, “One more!” I am sure you will continue to be a little bookworm when you grow up. When you were a baby, I turned out the lights and rocked you for just a moment, singing you the “Snuggle Bug” song that my mom used to sing to me when I was little. With one last kiss, I laid you in bed and you drifted off to sleep with no complaints. Now that you are older, you don’t want me to rock you before bed anymore. You have turned into such a squirmy wormy, and I miss my little cuddle bug! So our new routine is that you stand in your bed, wide awake, and I stand by the door for a few minutes before I close it for the night. While I’m there, we wave and blow kisses to each other. It cracks me up that you do this every. single. night. It just might be one of the cutest things I have ever seen!

Peyton, you truly are a gift from God. I know someday you’ll figure out that Mommy and Daddy weren’t married when you were born. I am sure that someday you’ll ask me if you were a mistake. I dread that day, because I know that question will break my heart. However, I know what I will say to you. I’ll tell you that I wanted a baby long before I even knew about you. I’ll tell you that God planned you just for us, and He gave you to us at just the perfect time. I’ll tell you that all of our family and friends were so excited to meet you, and that we were lucky that they all got to meet you at our wedding when you were two months old. And finally, I’ll tell you that I could not have planned a more perfect baby at a more perfect time in our lives. We were ready for you, and God knew that.

So on your first birthday, know that you have a family that loves you so very much, and we think the world of you! You are such a sweet and special little girl. We can’t wait to see what each new year of life brings you. We know that in 6 months, you will be getting a new baby brother or sister. We chose to have a new little one because we love YOU so much!!! All I know is…the new baby sure has some BIG shoes to fill! 😉

We love you, Birthday Girl!




I asked Jason to also write a letter to Peyton on her birthday. While he was a little hesitant at first, claiming he “wasn’t good at that stuff,” I am soooo glad he did! I think it is so special that Peyton will have a letter from each of us on her birthday’s. And on a sidenote, can I just say how adorable and sweet my hubby is?! He is without a doubt the best husband and daddy I could have ever asked for. We are truly blessed to have him in our lives, and I can’t wait to see what’s in store for our little family! 🙂



You are turning one tomorrow and I cannot believe it.  Where has this year gone?  I can remember like yesterday when your mom told me we were expecting you.  We were scared, excited, and not knowing what to expect.  Your mom is the one that prepared the most and read books / articles to make sure we would be the best parents we could be.  Mommy made sure she told me about the articles to make sure I was prepared too.  She did a great job, because I actually know what to do now!

As the months went on we watched you get bigger in mommy’s tummy.   I remember mommy would eat Peeps and you would do flips in her tummy.   We would also watch you kick and see your foot through mommy’s skin.  That was crazy cool.  I also couldn’t wait for you to get here and hold you in my arms.

The doctors induced mommy around the original due date that they predicted for you at Christ Hospital.  You were not ready to come meet us yet.  You were going to come out when you were ready.  We spent 3 days in the hospital until the doctors sent us home.  A week later, we were told to come back to Christ Hospital.  They induced mommy again and you were going to meet us.  We were going through labor and mommy did such a good job bringing you into this world.  Luckily for me, the Cincinnati Reds had a double header that day, so it gave me something to watch while I helped mommy through labor.  After game 1, which the Reds lost 4 -2 to the New York Yankees, the doctor came into the room and said, “We will have a baby by the first pitch of the next game!”

I started getting really nervous to meet you.  I had a bunch of butterflies in my tummy waiting to meet you.  I helped Mommy any way I could by rubbing her back, helping her walk around the room, and holding her leg back so she could push.

The doctor was right, just before the start of the Cincinnati Reds game, you arrived!  When I laid my eyes on you my life instantly changed for the better.  I fell so in love with you, I don’t even think I can explain it.  You were so pretty and perfect in every way.  You started crying and all I wanted to do was hold you.  The doctor wrapped you in a blanket and handed you to mommy.  You looked at us and stopped crying and started “coo-ing”.  You got to meet a lot of people when you arrived.  Our hospital room was packed with our families wanting to meet you.  Oh and the Reds beat the New York Yankees 10 – 2 in the second game of their double header.  I told Grandpa Roo, the Reds won for Peyton.

After we brought you home, you got to meet our family (Hogan, Lei Lou, and Sadie.)  You were so good even around the dogs.  Most babies are afraid of dogs and you showed no fear.

I have watched you grow and learn so much over the past year.  I am amazed at all the milestones you have accomplished so far in your life.  I can’t wait to watch you continually grow and be a big part of it.  I love you so much and want to support you any way I can.

I look forward to many, many, many more years and many more memories we will share together.



This is one of my favorite pictures of Peyton and her Daddy, taken when she was only three days old. 🙂

June 18, 2012

I had the privilege of photographing Brittany and Steve’s maternity session a few months ago. Then I got to do their newborn session when Weston was only a few days old! It was so nice to visit with this sweet baby boy, and of course his wonderful parents! He was a good sport while we experimented with all sorts of backdrops and props. We joke that he’ll laugh someday at the things he was in (a bowl, his dad’s police hat, etc.)!

The last few pictures were taken in Weston’s nursery. Can I just say how ADORABLE it is?! I am seriously considering hiring Brittany to design Baby #2’s room, because she has such cute ideas!

Brittany and Steve, thank you so much for letting me spend some time with your family during the precious newborn stage! I can’t wait to take more pictures of this cutie when he is 6 months old! Don’t blink…it will be here before you know it. I learned that lesson all too well with my kiddo! 🙁

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