The Thing with Xavi

From his gender, to me not getting an epidural while giving birth, to having a newborn photoshoot done, to loud whiny cries—everything has been unexpected with this little guy.

We weren’t going to do a newborn photoshoot for Xavi, a lot has been going on and I didn’t even bother doing my research for local photographers just because our schedule (or Marco’s, rather) hasn’t been that flexible and that would definitely be an additional expense so I didn’t dwell on it.

In an unexpected turn of events, we ended up doing one for him and we were blessed enough to work with a very nice local photographer. Amanda Hakes of Betty and Bobby Photography was very professional and she handled Xavi wonderfully, she was very pleasant to work with and was very patient with him. When he wouldn’t cooperate anymore, she waited while I fed him until he was satisfied and there was no pressure in my part at all. Here are some photos of her beautiful work.





 This boy looks like an angel when he’s asleep but he can cry LOUDLY when he’s hungry


She got promoted to BIG SISTER


I already know he’s going to be a Mama’s boy


Of course daddy is the happiest, he has another player on his team


With our little, handsome newborn


I know you’re an Ate now but you will always be mommy’s baby


Our latest family photo— Daddy Marco, Mommy Rhea, Ate/ Manang Cassie and Xavi.


I decided to share these photos today as Xavi turns three weeks. He had his 2-week appointment a few days ago and we were a bit worried that he wouldn’t gain his birth weight back because we had that problem with Cassie. From 7 lbs. and 13 oz Xavi’s weight went down to 6 lbs and 11 oz on his first doctor’s visit and we’re happy to say that he gained his birth weight back and more, he’s currently 8 lbs and 11 oz. My little man feeds a lot, I don’t remember breast feeding Cassie this much but when he asks, mommy gives and believe me he asks a LOT.

Post partum recovery for me is a lot better this time around in both emotional and physical aspect. I’m more mobile and at three weeks I’m doing chores like I didn’t even give birth and I find that pretty amazing considering that I didn’t have an epidural during labor. I’ve lost 20 lbs. since giving birth and I need to lose 15-20 lbs more, so far so good. Cassie has adjusted pretty well with the presence of her little brother, of course she acted up the first few days when we brought him home but recently she’s asked to take part in taking care of him, throwing his dirty diapers and putting lotion on him. Hopefully in the next few weeks, we can fully adjust with the new baby in the house and establish a new norm for our growing family.


The Unconventional Cassie

Like every new mom, I wanted to have a newborn photoshoot for my little one but Marco and I had to compromise because the photography rates here in the US can be ridiculously expensive, a sitting fee of a professional photographer could easily cost $150 and that’s without prints or digital copies of the images. We were so close to taking the photos ourselves and editing it (which was very doable for me) but I was still recovering from the delivery and his family flew in to Houston to see the baby so we didn’t have the time to do that. Well, we did find time after Cassie’s visit to her pediatrician but we didn’t have a photographer so we purchased the JC Penny deal on Groupon on the spot; without any ideas for the photoshoot or props we headed to the closest JC Penny, scheduled an appointment and came back that afternoon.

Now the quality of the photos were nothing like the ones of our wedding but for $30 JC Penny did pretty okay and Cherry of the Sugarland Branch was just amazing. It was feeding time when we went and Cassie was starving so she wasn’t sleeping, she was fussy, we had to take breaks just so I could feed her and to top it all she peed on Cherry, the photographer. I could post beautifully composed photos of my daughter in cute little poses with her floral head dress, wrapped in a rustic swaddle sleeping like an angel but at 8 days old she was already a character and I wanted to share that so here is my little one still a little bit jaundiced from the pregnancy, with her umbilical cord showing and a whole lot of attitude.


I am mommy’s mini-me


Showing of my large foot, one thing I got from daddy


I’m not liking this fully undressed business

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Seriously mom, you put me in a basket with a bunch of apples?

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Mommy: Cassie, stop making the “pogi ako” pose.


Just about to sneeze…Aaaahchooo!



~the new mommy, Rhea