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A TOPS baby!

Bridget Louise, at 2 weeks

I do realize that some of you interact with the TOPS blogs and our website because you’re on a journey to a healthier version of yourself — and that is so, so commendable. I don’t want to take away from that! So, here’s your fair warning: Today’s blog entry coming from yours truly? It has NOTHING to do with weight loss, healthy living or wellness.

I’ll be back with my usual mix of “What’s new at TOPS Headquarters” and “How a better diet and/or something fitness related is fitting into my own life these days,” fairly soon! 🙂

For now, I just wanted to pop onto the blog briefly, and tell you, TOPS readers and friends, that my maternity leave has arrived. We now have a TOPS baby on our hands!

My husband and I welcomed our third child, a baby girl, on Nov. 11. We named her Bridget Louise — Bridget, simply because we’ve always liked the name, and Louise is a tribute to my late grandmother. Bridget was born in downtown Milwaukee at 6:02 a.m., after a fast and furious labor! She clocked in at 7 pounds, 12 ounces, and 20 inches long. We are so, so, lucky to have her! Our whole family is over the moon in love with this little girl.

I’ve written a little bit on the blog about my pregnancy in the past — mostly, the gestational diabetes! — so I’m VERY happy the GD is now a thing of the past (although I am going to try to keep up with low carb and low sugar, most days), and I’m glad Bridget was born a reasonable size. They warn you, that sometimes with GD, babies can grow so large that it makes delivery really hard … and obviously, no one wants that. And my older daughter was nearly 9 pounds, so I was hoping we could keep this baby in a better range! That we did. 🙂 Anyway, I tell you all this just because I feel like I opened the pregnancy conversation in the first place. Now, I might as well give you the update: She’s here!

And she’s very happy/healthy/perfect (says her very biased mom).

Bridget will be 3 weeks old as of tomorrow, 12/2, we’re all settling in as a family of five; just getting over some coughs-colds-flus-ear infections-etc., (although baby is healthy so far, knock on wood!).

And I haven’t gone completely MIA from my TOPS responsibilities, either!

I do plan on bringing you occasional blog entries (some I’ve prepared well in advance), our usual email newsletter, Community Corner, and more. I won’t be far from my laptop at any given time!

So as always, email me if you have any questions that I’m equipped to answer — or ask your Field Staff if it’s something better suited for that crowd — and know that I’m always around, within reason, of course. My response times might be delayed, but you can still count on a reply.

And this is just my two cents, but a little space can be a good thing, if you ask me. I’ve already had ample time to take a step back and think critically about work things, and some plans I’d like to implement when I’m fully back and in the office again. All good stuff!

Plus, we have a new hire starting next week. So you might see another name swirling around here, from the Communications Department. You’ll love her; whether it’s a story you might read in the next TOPS News authored by her, or maybe she’ll be making a guest appearance in the membership-wide email newsletter … stay tuned!

As you can see, I’m jumping all over the place, topic-wise, but it’s nothing but positivity over here.

I feel like I’ve gotten to know so many of you in my short stint so far as Communications Director: Field Staff, TOPS members, members of the Board, and more — so if you want to hear a little bit more about baby, here’s the scoop!

Bridget is the sweetest little thing — very calm, relatively easy, and extremely alert. She sleeps a lot, including some good stretches at night, which is great, but my older kids (ages 6 and 4) wish she were awake a little bit more often … but I’ve advised that it’ll all happen in good time. 😉 Ana is like, “When can I show her my room and she’ll actually listen?” lol. Patience, little one!

Analisa, Robby and Bridget

Bridget arrived one day before her due date, she looks exactly like her older sister did at this age, and her favorite thing in the world is napping on my chest. She’s already getting used to having stuffed animals shoved in her face (with love, of course), living in a bit of a loud household, and the only thing she DOESN’T love is diaper changes. Bridget is great at tummy time already, and she makes super cute little baby animal sounds — lots of squeaks and squawks before she goes into a full-blown cry. She didn’t even cry when she was born, by the way, which freaked me out at first, like, “Is she OK?” She sure was! Just a calm, precious little girl.

If there’s anything I love more than writing, getting to meet new people, and my day-to-day work life, it’s my kids. Being a mom is so, so special to me. Even though the early days can be a challenge, not knowing what to expect schedule-wise and running on fumes, I’m just so happy to have Bridget “earthside!”

I hope everyone is doing well in your household!

Expect more blog posts soon (non-baby related), and please forgive my short hiatus.

Isn’t this the cutest? It’s from Board of Directors VP Deanna Bies (made by her daughter!) and the Service Program Administrators. I’ll have to show you guys the beautiful blanket from the Board as well, made by Board Secretary Gina Brueske.
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