The Baekje Cultural Land and Naesosa Temple

This was actually my favorite structure in the complex (it's not the actual temple. This houses the large drum)

When Stella and I finally got on Korean time, we were ready to take our first trip (albeit small) to some of the neighboring temples.  Our first jaunt was to the Baekje Cultural Land near Buyeo.  A fellow Air Force spouse had mentioned this complex and considering it wasn’t a very long drive (just a little over an hour), we decided to check it out.  Our second trip came the following weekend to Naesosa Temple in the Byeonsanbando National Park, south of base…. [Read More]

Our Korean Adventure Begins!

The Koreans' simulator building

At 10 weeks, Stella finally started feeling better.  We changed her acid reflux medicine to first-omeprazole/Prilosec, which is a bit stronger and ended up working a lot better.  She seemed to finally calm down and I felt good enough about it to make the plunge (i.e. agree to take an infant on a 14 hour plane ride across the Pacific to go see dad).  I heard a lot of “wow, you’re brave” and “that’s crazy” and “that’s a really long flight,” all of which I can understand.  However, as a military family, you have to be willing to do some things that aren’t incredibly easy.  I’m not going to lie….  I gave myself a lot of pep-talks and told myself that if the flight went absolutely terrible, it was only one day of my life.  I was pretty terrified that I was going to be on a flight with a screaming baby for who knows how long and everyone was going to hate me.  However, I put on my big girl pants and I got all my paperwork in order to take the military “rotator” or “Patriot Express” (great name, right?) from Seattle to South Korea…. [Read More]

Stella’s First (mini) Road Trip – Mount Rainier

It was a little windy, so we didn't get a perfect reflection.  Beautiful nonetheless...

Although we live in West Seattle, I would still consider Mount Rainier a road trip when it involves an infant. In the last week of our Seattle stay, before “moving” across the pond to Korea, my mom, dad, Stella and I drove down to Mount Rainier National Park.  We decided to do the scenic loop of the park, entering at the northeast corner on 410, passing by the Reflection Lakes, visiting Paradise (yep, it’s a place!), and exiting at the southwest corner before heading back home.  When it was all said and done, we were gone for 8 hours and drove about 225 miles.  Stella was an absolute trooper and had her first diaper changed in the trunk.  (We have since perfected that technique)…. [Read More]

Maternity Photos

Stella bean

I must admit, when I first started searching for a photographer for maternity photos, I felt a little silly.  Most people get maternity photos with their significant other and since Bobby was (and still is) in South Korea, I was worried I’d look a little silly having them taken by myself.  After thinking about it for a while and even posing the question to the photographer, I realized these were keepsakes I wanted to have for years to come.  What if I forget what I looked like pregnant or what if I never have another child? I also figured it would be pretty cool to show Stella what she looked like in mom’s belly.  So, I got over my insecurities about feeling a little strange, about feeling really swollen and big and decided to do it anyway. And turns out, I’m so glad I did. :)  Thanks again to Meredith Dickens for the photographs. These were taken at 34 weeks and I gave birth to Stella at 38 weeks and 5 days…. [Read More]

Documenting Stella’s Birth

Weighing in at a whopping 6 lbs and 11.2 oz!

When I told the story of Stella’s birth, I believe I mentioned we had professional photos taken along the way.  After doing an internet search and finding out several of my hometown friends recommended her work, I hired Meredith Dickens to document my pregnancy via maternity photos (see next post) and take photos of Stella’s birth and as well as her newborn photos.  After seeing the final product and working with Meredith three different times, I HIGHLY recommend her for anyone seeking truly professional work in the Ashland, KY area.  She spent about two hours on my maternity shoot, came to the hospital at 1am to shoot the birth in action, even returned the next day to capture Stella’s first bath and spent almost 5 hours at my parents’ house taking Stella’s newborn shots.  In hindsight, I was even more thankful for the photo documentation since Bobby missed Stella’s birth.  They are truly keepsakes we will treasure for years to come.  Since I already wrote about the birth, I’ll let the photos speak for themselves:… [Read More]

Stella Wren – The Growing Pains of Being (Almost) 2 Months Old

Someone still thinks she's in utero - 2 weeks old

Everyone says having a baby changes your life and I’m a total believer now.  Stella has been the best thing to ever happen to us, but also the most difficult endeavor we’ve ever taken on. I thought that the actual birth process was hard, but in comparison to the next (now almost) 8 weeks, the birth was a piece of cake…. [Read More]

Stella Wren’s Birth Story

Baby girl finally made it into the world!

Stella Wren Flammia was born on June 22, 2015 at 2:37am.  I can’t believe she is finally here and we are now a family of three.  I think it was difficult for me to imagine what having a baby would be like on a day to day basis and it has certainly been a fun adventure so far trying to figure out a routine, all the baby cues she tries to give us and our strengths and weaknesses as a family…. [Read More]

Getting Ready for Baby – 30 Weeks

"Well Nested" crib bedding

I have reached the 30 week point of my pregnancy (7.5 months for you non-baby speakers out there) and that means I’m officially 3/4 of the way there.  Or, at least theoretically. :)  30 weeks means that I’m now seeing my OB every two weeks, so I’m gearing up to leave Seattle and move back to Kentucky for the remainder of my pregnancy.  30 weeks also means that baby girl is almost 3 whole pounds and the size of a large cabbage.  She is routinely opening and closing her eyes, has distinct sleep and wake cycles and some scientists believe she can even dream at this point.  How awesome is that?  The baby’s lungs and digestive tract are almost completely developed, although her sight is still pretty rudimentary.  I can feel her punching and kicking, flipping and flopping every day, which is an amazing feeling…. [Read More]