July 31, 2013

a day in the life - jess

We had an incredibly lazy day yesterday, unlike the one you get to read about here.  Jess wrote a post not too long ago, but she was up for another so I said why not!  I hope you enjoy a peek at her day.


Thank you Ashley for hosting me today!  Also, thank you for getting me out of my blogging slump :-)  If you head over to my blog Life With Crazycurls, you'll see that it's been a while since my last post.  Why is it that summer has that affect on me?  Probably because our days are filled to the brim like this past Monday:

I hear Tommy crying but it is way too early for both of us.  Turns out he had a poopy diaper (lots of those lately, maybe teething?) so I change him and put him back down. Thankfully he goes back to sleep until 7:45.  He usually doesn't sleep this late so I'm pretty happy.

We go down for breakfast and immediately Molly and Tommy start playing with the doggy jack-in-the-box they just can't get enough of.

I'm tired of worrying that Tommy is accidentally going to delete an app or send an email so I finally set up a passcode on my phone.  But after he tests it out I end up taking it off because I became worried he was going to make an 'emergency call'.

If he's anything like his big sister, soon I'm not going to have any of my electronics!

Swim lessons!  Molly is doing wonderfully, she'll be ready to move up a level next time she takes lessons.  Tommy and I are doing the child/parent class.  He doesn't want anything to do with what we're supposed to be doing and would rather jump from the side and play with the toys.

We're back home and I have to get the chicken started.  Tried this new marinade and turned out really well!

Molly's into drawing out stories lately.  The dry-erase board comes in handy, I'm sure we've saved a couple of trees using this.

After a lunch of noodles I put Tommy down for a nap and have Molly doing some arts and crafts.

Throughout the rest of the afternoon I wash and fold four loads of laundry, call my clinic asking them to re-fax a prescription to the online pharmacy my insurance is making me use, call the local school admin office to schedule a new student appt for Molly before she starts Pre-K in September, sweep and wipe down the floors, unload the dishwasher, etc etc etc.  I also have to make sure I'm not ignoring Molly.  I have to remind myself to stop and make sure she is getting attention too.

Tommy wakes up and I start the potatoes for dinner.  Keith is having friends come over to help him work on the basement so I plan on grilling outside to make sure we stay out of their way. 

Marinated chicken with roasted potatoes.  I forgot the zucchini so I had to grill that after, whoops.  Turned out pretty well, I'm not the grill master in the house so I was a little worried what the results might be!

After dinner we go to the front yard where Molly's friends from down the block are out and about so they play until about 6:45.  Nice to be outside on beautiful sunny day.

Dishes are done so Tommy and I play while Molly plays with Playdoh.

The kids watch a show before bed, Molly chooses Imagination Movers.  LOVE these guys!!!  They have a show on Disney Junior, highly recommend it for your kids.

Molly was upset that I took away her story because she hit Tommy.  She gets a book, story and song on the nights I put her to bed and I know the story is her favorite.  She usually wants me to tell her the story of "Rumpelstiltskin".  I give her extra snuggles and remind her that I still love her even though I had to punish her.

After they are both in bed I am on the couch with a glass of wine watching season 6 of "The Sopranos".

Keith's friends go home and he realizes he needs to get something at the hardware store for tomorrow night.

Keith's in bed and me, the nocturnal one, is up until 11:30.  Someday I'll go to bed after the 10:00 news, but not today.

Ashley's questions:

I was fortunate enough to do a Day In The Life post back in April and while I still like my answers from then, here are some close seconds. 

Q:  What is the most surprising thing to you about being a mom?
A:  How much I enjoy doing for them over doing for me.  When we didn't have kids, I had no problem going out with friends until all hours, having a gym membership that I used twice a month, buying new shoes at the Nine West outlet.  Now?  I'm making sure Tommy has diapers and Molly goes to camps and that we walk to the playground.  Not that I don't need some ME time but I actually find joy in making sure my kids' needs are met before my own.

Q:  What advise would you give to new or soon-to-be mommas?
A:  On the other side of doing for them, you must also continue to be active.  And I don't mean exercising (although that is a great stress reliever).  But I mean, don't let your baby define who you are.  Your baby is a part of you of course, but you still have your own interests and you deserve to have them.  I'm not saying it won't be tough to follow through but at least never give up trying.  I was taking a ballet class last Winter and hope to start up again this Fall.

Q:  What are your top three baby products?
A:  Right now?  For Tommy: Take n' Toss sippy cups, spray-on sunblock, Little Tikes basketball hoop.  For Molly: Dry erase board and markers, Princess dresses, construction paper and crayons.

Ashley, thank you so much for having me again.  I hope to get out of my blogging slump so stop on over to check out what's new!


Thanks for sharing with us Jess!

July 29, 2013

i'm so boring

Blech.  I am so SICK of eggs for breakfast.  I have scrambled eggs nearly every morning for breakfast.  I figure it is the easiest way to get in some protein, and since I only do one egg plus egg whites I can keep the calories low.  But I think I've only got a few more days in me of eggs for breakfast before I lose my mind.  I haven't been doing the best eating clean or whole foods lately, so I figured what the heck, I'd just have peanut butter toast.  Except my body apparently doesn't like bread in the morning anymore.  What gives?  My stomach gets all eeew, gluten on me or something.  So now I'm half heartedly on the search for new easy breakfast options.  I would go the smoothie route, except I think I'd be sad if I didn't get to actually chew my breakfast.  Is that dumb?

Now that I'm thinking about it though, if I could have a smoothie and some bacon for breakfast, I'd be content for a while.  Because bacon.  Yum.

But cooking bacon for one seems like a waste of time/mess/etc...

Can you tell I didn't really have anywhere I wanted to go with this post?  Ha.

Looking back at my goals this week I didn't do too terrible.  I managed four runs totaling 14.65 miles, but other than that I didn't do much.  So I failed at the whole strength workout thing.  One day I did do a total of 100 sit-ups and 40 push-ups, but...  Reading some of the posts that were linked up from last week is making me antsy to up my mileage.  If only got 14 total on my calendar again for this week, but maybe I'll shoot for a touch more.  I think I'd like my base to be 15 miles a week, and just add from there if I am training for something.  Oh, also, I did succeed in losing a pound this week. Two goals out of three isn't terrible (although by school standards I failed, didn't I?  sad.)

Goals for this week:

-lose one pound
-four runs totaling 15+ miles
-one strength workout
-one new breakfast

Has anyone else started training for fall races?  Following a plan in particular?


Link up your health and fitness related posts below!

July 26, 2013

walk like a ninja

Really there are several reasons why I would love to move out of our house, but an incredibly huge reason?  The stupid freaking squeaky floors.  I honestly have no clue how we didn't notice it before we had kids, or if it has really just gotten that much worse since we've owned the house, but the floors are LOUD.  Absurdly loud.

Both of my girls have been light sleepers.  Ryann isn't so much anymore, but as a baby, if you so much as breathed outside her door she woke up.  I'm always amazed at the parents who check on their children after putting them to bed.  Hell no.  There is no way I'm chancing waking them up by opening their door.  That is just night time suicide.  And also the reason why my video monitor is one of my most prized baby gear items. 

Side note:  Raise your hand if your child is a light sleeper, and the slightest noise will rouse them, but a gigantic thunderstorm rolls through shaking the house and they don't even flinch.  Yeah, my hand is up.  WTH?

In regards to the title of the post, now that Elsie is sleeping in her crib and we're going through the whole sleep training process, it is even more terrifying to walk down the hallway to the bathroom or our bedroom.  To keep from waking her, you must be sure to take the quietest path, which means tip toeing and hopping from non squeaky spot to non squeaky spot.  No lie we've considering putting tape X's on the floor or something so there is less of a chance of hitting a loud spot.

We have a laundry chute in the closet that is between the girls bedrooms.  Instead of using hampers we just throw all our dirty clothes in the hallway in front of the closet at the end of the day (classy, I know).  Well the other day when both girls were napping I decided I really wanted to work on the laundry, but I hadn't thrown the clothes down the chute yet.  A predicament for sure.  There was no way I was going to open the door to the closet, because all the stupid doors in our house are loud too, so I debated whether doing laundry was really worth it.  But it needed to be done.  So I ninjaed myself down the hall so I was straddling the loud parts, and did my best to scoop up the clothes.  Then I used all the strength in my left leg to propel myself onto my right (all while holding two days worth of dirty clothes).  After a little spinning balancing act I hopped back into the kitchen to safety.

It is ridiculous the things we have to do to keep the kids asleep.


July 25, 2013

this and that

::  First and foremost... a very VERY large fly has taken up residence in my 'office' (a closet in our family room) right now.  I haven't quite lost my shit yet tonight, but he is about to push me over the edge.

::  I don't think I've mentioned it here yet, but my bestie is pregnant.  I am over the moon for her and so very excited to meet her little one.  Actually right now I'm more excited to plan her a baby shower, I love a good party.  Parties + babies = like the best thing ever, right?  Well this past Friday they had a little gender reveal party.  And I got to be the one who knew the good stuff!  I opened the envelope Friday morning, and was thrilled to discover they were having a boy.  So after a trip to Party City for balloons, I loaded up the box.  Unfortunately only three balloons would fit and still have them pop out, so I suggest if you plan to do something similar, get a very wide box, smaller balloons, or come up with a way for them to pop up better.  Nonetheless, it was still very exciting to watch my friends discover the news...


::  We need some help over here.  Ryann is OBSESSED with picking things.  Such as her lips, her nose, her fingernails, scabs... you name it, she wants to pick at it.  Right now she has approximately eight scabs on her legs from scratching/picking at bug bites.  I'm at a complete loss for what to do.  We've tried telling her they'll get infected.  Threatening to take things away.  Band-aids.  Footed pajamas.  Socks on her hands.  NOTHING is working.  She mostly does it at night, or if she is left alone for too long.  It was annoying and gross when it was just her lips, but these bug bites seriously will get infected if we can't do something about it soon.  Any suggestions?  Anyone know how to make it stop all together? 

love these girls, but ugh, band-aid city

::  My e-mail inbox is out of control with comments that I haven't responded to.  I usually try to keep my inbox under 100 messages (I have some stuff saved in there that I just haven't wanted to delete or sort into other folders).  Right now?  228 messages.  Stupid, just stupid.  I need to just sit down and go through them.  In all honesty I'll probably just delete most of the comment e-mails without a response, unless it was a question.  I apologize, know that I do read every comment and appreciate all the love, support and insight I get from you guys.  I mean that from the bottom of my heart.

::  Chubby little rolls and drool bubbles.  You're welcome.


::  Elsie is asleep and Ryann is in her room for quiet time.  I should workout.  Or do laundry.  Or something productive.  But I just don't want to.  I either want to nap, or eat.  Or shop online.  One of those is probably more beneficial than the others...  Maybe I'll just do some sit-ups and call it good.  Walking around Target counts as light cardio, right?  Right.

July 24, 2013

boo sleep training.

I know I know.  You're probably thinking either A) this girl talks about her kids' sleeping habits too much or B) if you don't like sleep training (in our case, a cry-it-out method) why are you doing it?  Well if Elsie would let me rock her to sleep, in a reasonable amount of time, and actually stay asleep, unswaddled, in her crib, then you better believe I'd be in that glider snuggling my baby.  But it just wasn't the case.  She was still sleeping partially swaddled in the rock 'n play and needed me to rock or nurse her to sleep.  Honestly it still wouldn't have been that bad, but I can't just ditch Ry for 20+ minutes here and there to get Elsie to nap.  And Elsie gets so sad and pathetic when she is tired.

So Sunday we went all Ferber on her adorable, unsuspecting little self.

uh mom?  what the heck is going on here?

Bedtime went pretty much as I suspected.  E cried and cried and CRIED.  It was so sad.  Elsie is a really good baby, she tolerates and puts up with a lot, so we rarely hear a real true cry from her.  My heart was breaking.  I quickly wanted to give up and go get her, but I told myself I was committing to three nights, and if after three nights things didn't look much better than screw it.  We'll figure something else out.  I went in at the appropriate intervals according to Ferber's book to rub her back and try and soothe her a bit, but my presence did nothing for her.  She just continued to scream.  After about 35 minutes she finally calmed to sad, pathetic little sobs, and by the 40 minute mark she was asleep (about 9:15pm).

Elsie continued to be restless for another couple of hours, which was not surprising at all.  I'd be a little out of sorts too, if I went from sleeping all wrapped up in an upright position to completely free on my belly (she immediately rolls to her belly when she is put down).  Thankfully she never truly woke up and required me to come back in there until 3am.

She woke up at 3, and was fussing a bit here and there.  She seemed to be trying to go back to sleep, but couldn't.  And her fussing was starting to escalate.  So I decided to feed her.  She has been waking between 3-5am for a feeding for quite a while, so I assumed she was legitimately hungry.  Plus, I'm not sleeping training in the hopes of her sleeping through the night.  That isn't something I'm concerned with yet.  I just don't need an hour+ circus trying to get her back to sleep.  Anyway, I made certain to not let her fall completely asleep nursing.  When she was done, I rocked her just a little, gave her a kiss, told her I loved her and laid her back in the crib.  I was tense walking back to my room, expecting another 40+ minutes of tears.

But she didn't cry.  Not at all.  There was maybe a peep or two while she tried to figure out how to get comfortable, and it did take her at least 20 minutes to fall asleep.  But she didn't cry!  I was so incredibly thankful for that.  She slept for just over two more hours, and woke up for the day around 6:20.

There were still lots of tears for naps on Monday, but for each one it took her less than 15 minutes to fall asleep.  Unfortunately she only slept for half an hour.  The third nap of the day I decided to give her 10 minutes to see if she could fall back asleep, and she did at the nine minute mark.  It was only additional 40 minutes, but she needed sleep.

Elsie's thoughts on sleep training...

Monday bedtime went very similar to Sunday, lots and lots of tears.  Part of the problem, I think, is she is falling asleep nursing, and then is ultra pissed when I lay her down because I don't wait until she is out cold.  That time it only was 30 minutes of crying before she was down for the night, so an improvement I guess, but she was also more worn out from barely napping all day.  She did wake again around 3am.  I watched her try to go back to sleep for about 15 minutes, but she was starting to get more and more worked up.  I went in to change her diaper and feed her and she had pooped.  I'm sure that is part of the reason she couldn't sleep.  But after she was fed she went to sleep by herself with minimal resistance, and slept until 7:30.

The first two naps on Tuesday were the same as Monday, took about 10 minutes for her to go to sleep, and then she slept for about 35 minutes.  For her third nap she actually slept about 90 minutes without waking up.  I was thrilled!  But bedtime was still awful.  Not quite as bad as the previous two days, but still 25 minutes with a significant amount of tears.  And the middle of the night didn't go quite as well.  She woke up very upset around 11:30pm.  I tried to give her a few to see if she could figure it out on her own, but she just got louder and louder.  I decided to feed her and lay her back down.  She didn't fall back to sleep quite as easily as the other two nights, but she did manage to go back to sleep.  However she woke again at 4:30am.  This time I changed her and fed her, and laid her back down.  Again, more fussing than the previous two nights, but she still went back to sleep without me coming back in the room, and was out until 7:45.

This morning nap didn't go very well at all.  Her cries were much more intense than yesterday during nap time, and it took her a good 20 minutes to fall asleep.  And she was only asleep for maybe, 5-10 minutes.  We had a play date planned, so we left the house.  She fell asleep in the car on the way home and slept for about 20 minutes.  Maybe an hour later she was rubbing her eyes like crazy, so I decided to put her down for another nap.  She cried hard for another 15 minutes before finally giving in to sleep.  She woke up crying 40 minutes later.  It had been three hours since she last ate, so I decided to just get her up and feed her.  She passed back out.  I know I should probably have kept her up, for the sake of her learning to put herself to sleep without sucking, but I felt so bad because she was so tired.  So tired that after about 15 minutes without her squirming at all, I was able to carry her from our family room to her room and lay her down (in the rock 'n play, whoops) without her flinching.

So I'm not really sure where to go from here.  I know we're only on day three, and we have three habits we're trying to break (swaddling, sleeping in the rock 'n play, nursing/sucking/rocking to sleep) so I need to cut us both some slack.  But with Ryann I saw a significant improvement by the third day of the Ferber method.  I'm sure it is harder with Elsie because not only are we changing up the situation entirely, but we don't really have a set schedule.  What we do changes daily.  Nor does she have a consistent wake time.  I wish someone could tell me exactly what to do.  I keep hearing just do what works for your family, but I'm not really sure what works for us, you know?  I hate hearing her cry, it hurts my heart so much, but spending so much time rocking her doesn't work either.  I guess I'll give it a few more days and see where we are at.  If it isn't getting better, well... I don't know.

And because I regularly get asked on instagram, we use this monitor.

July 23, 2013

a day in the life - claire

Apparently it's Tuesday.  I thought it was Wednesday.  You can have this post anyway...

Hello lovelies!  I hope everyone has a wonderful Wednesday Tuesday.  Fingers crossed that Miss Elsie naps more than 30 minutes at a time today.  The good news?  She has slept in her crib two whole nights with out too much trauma.  More on that tomorrow.  Today you get a peek at Claire's day.  Enjoy!


Hello, Domestic Wannabe readers! My name is Claire and I blog over at Chaotically Speaking. I have a three year old daughter named Avery and a four month old son named Patrick. I stay at home and my husband, Bruce, is in law enforcement and is finishing up his last year in the USMC Reserves. I blog mostly about our lives and whatever is on my mind at the time. I hope you enjoy a peak into our day!

2:30 am: Bruce gets home and wakes up the baby while he gets out of his uniform (there is a TON of Velcro on it). I  change and nurse Patrick and he goes back to sleep. I stay up for about half an hour to talk to the husband about our day and hear any crazy stories he has. I'm back asleep by 3.

7:00 am: Patrick is ready to eat again so I nurse him and he ends up drifting back to sleep so I try to rest a bit more. By 7:45, I'm up. I kept thinking about the things I need to get done, so I go ahead and hop in the shower.

8:00 am: I hear Avery get up. I go say good morning and ask her what she wants for breakfast. At this point, the little guy has awoken and is ready for another diaper change. Avery takes herself to the bathroom while I take care of her brother and then waits for me to turn on a movie while I cook. Today, she's watching Sophia the First. Patrick is in his bouncer in the kitchen.

8:30 am: Breakfast time! This morning, we're having tiny pancakes, sausages, and grapes. After breakfast, we head downstairs to the family room so we don't wake Daddy. I try to convince Avery to practice writing. She wants to write E's and O's for a bit then she writes her name asks if she can draw pictures.

11:00 am: Patrick starts to get fussy so I nurse him and get him ready for his morning nap. We're trying to break the swaddle habit and nap times/bedtimes are awful. Avery starts playing with some of her toys and I head up to Patrick's room to put him in his crib. Every time I try to put him down, he wakes up. Eventually, he's in his crib. Five minutes later, he's up again. About half an hour later, he's actually down for the nap.

12:00 pm: It's time to get Bruce up for the day. I decide to take Avery to the pool and let Bruce watch the babe for about 45 minutes.

1:00 pm: Avery and I are back from the pool. She spends some time with her daddy while I fix us all a quick lunch. Today, we're just having some Trader Joe's Tomato and Fire Roasted Red Pepper soup and sandwiches. Avery opts for just soup. Right as I sit down to eat, Patrick is up and demanding some food. After a quick diaper change, he eats and is happy.

2:00 pm: Bruce puts Patrick on his playmat for some tummy time and puts together some Legos with Avery. Meanwhile, I gather up some things he needs for his upcoming military training and throw them in the washer. After that, I tidy up the kitchen and load the dishwasher.

3:00 pm: Bruce has to start getting ready for work. Then my father in law sends me a text asking if he can take us out for ice cream. I check the time and give the ok since the kids and I are heading to Florida in a few days. Patrick is ready for a nap again. I'm hoping he'll pass out and then sleep in the car.

3:30 pm: Father in law pulls in our driveway. The kids and I load up and we head to a yummy frozen custard place. It's hot outside but we sit on benches in the shade and let Avery run around.

3:58 pm: We're home just in time to get Avery ready for dance class. Bruce is in his work vehicle about to start his shift.

4:30 pm: Avery has her last dance class of the summer. Patrick is snoozing in the Moby wrap.

5:15 pm: We're home from dance. I nurse Patrick and decide we are eating leftovers for dinner. We're having vegetarian lasagna.

6:35 pm: Bath time! Avery asks if Patrick can take a bath with her so I put his bathing seat in. Baby boy loves baths and has a big smile on his face.

7:00 pm: Avery is ready to be washed off. Patrick has already been washed and dressed. He's chilling in his bouncy seat but letting me know he's ready for bedtime too.

7:10 pm: Avery is in her pajamas and has brushed her teeth. I get her ice water and her stuffed Nala toy that she sleeps with and we choose a book to read. Patrick is in Avery's bed with us and is getting crankier.

7:30 pm: Avery is tucked in for the night. Patrick is ready to nurse again and go to sleep. I feed him and we do our sleep struggle for another 45 minutes before he is down for the next few hours.

8:20 pm: I move Bruce's clothes to the dryer and start the dishwasher. Then I get out my suitcase and start packing for Florida. Once that's done, I get ready for bed and turn on Netflix. I'm currently watching Desperate Housewives and am almost done with the show. I plan on watching until Patrick wakes up for his last feeding of the day.

10:30 pm: Patrick is ready to eat so I change his diaper and feed him. After that, I'm done for the day and it's lights out.

What is the most surprising thing to you about being a mom?
From a standpoint of going from a mom of one to a mom of two, I would say how much easier it is the second time around. With Avery, I was so scared of doing things wrong, but I wasn't nearly so stressed after having Patrick.

What advice would you give to new or soon-to-be mamas?
Be open to changing the perspective you had before the kiddo(s) came. It's easy to say, "I'll never do such and such with my kid," but with kids, you can't always plan what will work best for them.

What are your top 3 baby products?
1. The Moby wrap. It is a lifesaver with a baby and toddler.

2. The Baby Trend Sit and Stand Double Stroller. Since wearing Patrick all the time is not something that makes my back happy, I needed a double stroller that was lightweight and fit in my small car. This works out perfectly. The frame is a snap and go so it isn't heavy and works with most car seats.

3. Baby Einstein Neptune Ocean Adventure Gym. Patrick adores this thing whether he's on his back or doing some tummy time. There's so much to keep him entertained.


Thank you for sharing your day with us Claire!

July 22, 2013

small steps.

Good morning afternoon, Monday.  I was waiting until this morning to start this post because I wanted to do measurements and such, but Elsie hasn't napped as well as I had hoped so maybe I'll get this published before the end of the day.  We shall see...

Anyway.  I wish I had more progress to share, but there is progress, so that is better than nothing.  Looking at the pictures (here is my first set), I can't really see much of a difference.  Which isn't all that surprising because there isn't a huge difference in the numbers either, BUT I really want to see some progress soon!  I suppose I'd have to really commit to see the results though.  Just do it Ashley, just do it...


As far as numbers go, I'm down 4.2 pounds from where I first started.  Still up about a pound and a half from the lowest I've gotten over the last five weeks, but down from the start, and that is what counts right?  Even if it's two steps forward, one step back, I'm still going forward.  My measurements...

natural waist = 27.75 in (-1.5 inches)
belly button = 32 in (-1.5 inches)
hips = 40.25 in (-.75 inches)
leg = 24.675 in (-.825 inches)
arm = 11 in (no change)

Again, measuring your arm is kind of awkward, and I'm not sure (on any of these) if I'm holding the tape exactly where I did the first time, so they could certainly be off.  But the numbers in general are going in the right direction.  So it is all about committing and doing and not giving up.

Speaking of commitment, I decided to go all in and sign up for a half marathon in October.  The same one I've run twice before.  Because I've done it twice (here and here), I know what to expect.  Granted I won't be pregnant this time, so that will be nice.  But training will still be interesting.  I'm most concerned with getting in my weekday runs.  Right now the training plan (I'm loosely following Higdon's Novice 2 Plan) doesn't call for too high of mileage, but it won't be long before I'll need to be getting in five miles during the week.  I'm hoping this whole sleep training business we started with Elsie last night goes well, and makes my days a little more predictable.  That way I can be more prepared to get my runs in when I need to.

I'm so excited to truly have something to be training for though!  My goals for this week:

four runs
lose one pound
one strength workout

Oh, and another non fitness but sort of fitness related goal, get new shoes.  I've been in my same pair of Brooks since I ran the half in October, and even though I haven't been packing on the miles like I used to, it is about time to get some new sneaks.


Link up your health and fitness related posts below! 

July 18, 2013

a dream come true.

Twenty-four years ago my parents dropped me off at my first dance class.  Throughout elementary school I had a love/hate relationship with it, wanting to quit on a regular basis, and even claiming to be allergic to tights because I hated wearing them so much.  Ha.  But in sixth grade I had to choose between competitive soccer and competitive dance.  For some reason I chose dance, and ever since my passion for the art and sport has grown.  The dance studio became so much more than a place I learned, it was a home, the faculty and my peers a second family.  Dance was very much a huge part of my life.

On Monday I took Ryann to her very first dance class at the same studio.  It was a little surreal driving there, walking her into the studio and getting her all settled in for the camp.  But what surprised me most was how hard I had to try to hold back tears as I stood outside the room, watching her try to follow along, all while giggling.  It seems silly, to get so emotional over a dance class.  However I am holding on to bits and pieces of hope that she will grow to love dance as much as I did.  It truly is so much more than just a dance class.


It was a four day 'creative camp' (we skipped the last day because of gymnastics), with a favorites theme.  The first day was favorite color, the second day animal, and the third day favorite star.  We, uh, didn't plan ahead, which left my mom whipping up a dino shirt Monday night, and us scrambling to put together a ballerina outfit Wednesday morning because we couldn't come up with anything else.  But it doesn't matter.  Ry was stupid cute every day.  Because her pony tail + spandex just equals cute.


Here are a few shots of her doing the little dances she learned.  For the record the lighting was SO weird.  I don't understand why it was constantly changing.  Flashes from other cameras?  Just the lights?  I have no idea.  It was bizarre.

the tongue helps her jump...

And if that wasn't enough cute for you, some videos.  She um, sort of knows whats going on :o).

Baby girl, you can do whatever makes you happy.  But you sure make a cute little dancer :o).


July 17, 2013

a day in the life - kristin

First, I apologize for the lack of Move it Monday this week.  I started writing a post, and then No Nap Nancy decided to stop sleeping, like ever, and my threenager isn't taking naps anymore either, and we've been all over the place busy.  So yeah.  Maybe next week?

For now enjoy a day in the life of Kristin :o).


Hello all! I am Kristin and I blog over at The Lowly Nest. I am a stay-at-home-mom to our 14 month old son, Logan. I like to pretend I am a crunchy hippie, i.e cloth diapering, baby wearing, natural childbirth, extended breastfeeding, and using as many natural products as possible. I even bought a locally made shampoo bar recently! But we still love things like hot dogs, too much candy, and pedicures. My husband, Matt, works in retail management so we have no such thing as a schedule. Some days he is out the door at 7:15, others he isn't home until after 10:30, and he never has the same days off. For now we are bobbing along, going with the flow, but dreaming of a more consistent schedule one day.

Note to self: Take some family pictures without sunglasses on!

This is a typical day for us when Daddy opens the store:

7:15 Matt comes into the bedroom to tell me goodbye and leaves for work. I usually don't even realize he has gotten out of bed, much less gotten dressed. I try to get a few more precious moments of sleep before starting the day.

7:30 ::snooze::

7:35 ::snooze::

7:40 Ok, ok, I'm up! After I turn off my alarm I stay in bed a bit longer to check Instagram and wake up a bit. (I am in love with Instagram! Follow me! kristin _ _ low, no spaces) After catching up on social media I make the bed and start the coffee. Then talk to my sister on the phone for just a few minutes while I straighten up the bathroom.

8:00 Time to wake up the little man. We settle into my big red chair to nurse, cuddle, read books, and be silly. I don't wake Logan up every day, some days he wakes me up and some days we both sleep a little later, especially if Daddy is off or doesn't go into work until the afternoon.

8:25 I head into the kitchen to make breakfast and Logan posts up at the baby gate where he continually says and signs "eat." Just so I won't forget. ;)
We have eggs, sausage, toast, and blueberries this morning. Our usual is eggs, toast, and fruit, but when I talked to my sister earlier she mentioned bacon and reminded me of the maple sausage we had in the fridge! Yum!

9:00 I remember that I had diapers soaking in the washer over night and start the first of the rinse cycles to get all of the suds out, then set Logan free from his high chair. We joke around here about me always forgetting to restart the diaper laundry, as it has to be restarted a few times.

9:35 Logan and I are both dressed now and we take the dog out for a walk. Then come back inside and play a little.

10:00 Logan goes down for his morning nap and I watch a few YouTube videos on my phone, then somehow find myself on Pinterest. Oops!

10:30 After peeling myself away from my phone, I do a little stretching and a few different planks and try to convince myself that that counts as exercise for the day. I spend the rest of nap time cleaning up around the apartment, finishing the diaper laundry (prefolds into the dryer, pockets and covers on the line), and starting more laundry.

11:30 I hear Logan waking up and give him some time. If I rush in at the first sound I hear he tends to be a grumpus.

11:45 Logan sounds happy and wide awake, I rescue him from the crib and get a fresh diaper on his booty.

12:15 Time to eat again! It comes around so often, doesn't it?? We have tuna sandwiches, cheese, strawberry, and banana. Halfway through lunch I remember that I meant to steam some broccoli. Oh well. No veggies this meal. After we eat we play and read books for a while. Logan loves to read and brings me books all day long saying, "read it." I love that we can communicate more now! Whenever I know what he is saying his little face just lights up. Which makes me think that the rest of his babbling means something too. Who knows what all he is telling us! But for the time being, I am thrilled with the 40+ words we can recognize.

1:45 I beat off the afternoon sleepies and we get in the car to go exchange our books at the library. I check out five board books each time. That makes keeping up with them so much easier, and I don't have to try to remember how many I need to find to take back.

2:45 Back home. We drink some water and cool down from our hot outing. (I won't get into it much, but this was the day the air went out in the car! My husband got it fixed the next day. I can't imagine not having air in the car. One trip to and from the library just about did us in!)

After sweating it out in the car I forgot to take any pictures in the library, but I did snap this one after we got home of his red cheeks and sweaty head.
3:10 I put Logan down for his afternoon nap. I had full intentions of starting prepping our supper, but instead I laid across our bed and fell asleep for a while too.

3:43 Matt calls to let me know he is off work and headed to the gym.

4:45 Logan is up and ready to play!

5:15 I finally start working on supper.

5:30  Daddy is home! Logan attacks. :)

6:00 I put supper into the oven. We are having this tonight. It was my first time using this recipe, but my sister made it only a few days before and they loved it. (We did too.) I sit down in the living room with an iced coffee and watch Logan and Daddy play, stuff diapers, and talk to Matt about his day.

6:40 Time to eat! This is a late supper for us, mostly because someone took a nap instead of cooking. However, it was worth the wait and we all loved it.

7:05 Matt gives Logan a bath and I hang around like a little groupie. After bath we get little man into his jammies and all hang out in the living room. He was being so hilarious climbing on a little box and swinging a pool noodle around. Seriously, this little dude makes me laugh all day every day.

8:10 Logan and I rock and nurse in his room. Then I put him in bed and tell him "night-night."

After that Matt and I watch Jaws in our room. Such a random movie choice tonight. We almost never watch the tv in the living room anymore because it is right next to Logan's room and we have to keep it so low we are always missing dialogue. So we usually put on a movie in the bedroom and I will get on my computer or work on a crochet project. Tonight I read Jaws trivia from the IMDB app on my phone as we watch. I am sure Matt appreciated my commentary.

When the movie is over I wash my face, brush my teeth, etc, then go to sleep. After checking Instagram one last time. ;)

What is the most surprising thing about being a mom? I think for me it is how I just fell right into the "mom" role. When I was pregnant I wasn't scared about the labor and delivery part, I was scared about what happened after we got home! Once he was here my "mom" gene kicked in and it just came naturally.

What advice would you give new or soon-to-be mamas? Everyone has a different style. Find yours and go with it, and don't compare yourself or let others compare you. Also, the newborn days kinda suck, but stick it out (and enjoy them), they don't last forever.

What are your top three baby products? I say that if you are breastfeeding, you will always have your boobs, other than that all you really need are blankets, clothes, and diapers. All the other stuff can be awesome, but it is just extra.


Thank you for sharing your day with us Kristin!

July 16, 2013

that's what she said

Ryann:  "Remember when I was in trash bag land and I saw a trash truck that talked?  And he fell over and spinned on his wheels?"
Me:  WTF?

Ryann:  while we are getting in the car to leave "Good morning Lisa!"
Me:  "Who's Lisa?"
Ryann:  "Your car."

Me:  "Ryann, you need to make better choices during gymnastics class.  You need to listen to your teachers and be nice to the other kids.  You need to show me you can make better choices next week or we aren't going to go to gymnastics anymore."
Ryann:  "Maybe you could just stay home next week and I'll go by myself."

Michelle:  "This morning Effy and I went to the z-o-o with some friends."
Ryann:  "You went to the ZOO?!?!?"

after an epic quiet time battle
Ryann:  "Are you happy now?"
Me:  "Sorry honey, I'm still a little grumpy.  The choices you made during quiet time made me sad."
Ryann:  "How about a hug?  Would a hug make you happy?" bats her stupidly adorable little eyes
Me:  "It could help."
Ryann:  "I could juggle!  That might make you happy." with the hugest sweetest grin on her face


July 12, 2013

red, white and blue

Yes, I know, I'm like a week behind.  But I realized I never even blogged about Easter, so I should get my butt in gear and document some of the major holidays.

The girls and I headed to my parents the morning of the third.  We hung out, painted our nails in patriotic colors and decorated the boat.  Chris came over after work, and his mom joined us for dinner and the boat parade.  Really the boat parade is pretty uneventful, but it is a good excuse to cruise around the lake.  Unfortunately Elsie hated the wind (until Chris found a nice wind free sun free corner to tuck her in) and I managed to nearly break my tail bone.  I was sitting on the back of the boat so I could take pictures, leaned forward, and the seat that my feet were resting on slid open (they have storage underneath).  I fell into the storage area, breaking my fall with the back of my right thigh, my lower back and my tail bone.  It hurt.  A LOT.  I was a little worried I wouldn't get to run the next morning, but surprisingly when I woke up I wasn't sore at all.  I just gained some pretty awesome bruises that are still extremely purple.  After the parade Chris and Ryann went and picked up some fireworks, and eventually we convinced her to go to bed.

The morning of the fourth I got up bright and early to do the 'run around the lake', six miles of hills to kick start the day.  When I got home my mom whipped up some red velvet pancakes.  I'd need to taste them side by side with some regulars, because this version honestly didn't taste all that different, but they were still good and festive.  The rest of the day was spent hanging by the pool, eating too much food and enjoying a cocktail here and there.  And blowing through thousands of snap poppers.  We planned on letting Ryann stay up late to go out on the boat and watch fireworks, but when it came time to go she was freaked out by how loud it was outside, so we opted to stay back at the house.  She braved going outside for a little bit to watch all the craziness, and I did a few sparklers.  Not a crazy day, but a good day.


And the instagram version...


And now to go tend to the littles, who really aren't taking 'quiet time' too seriously today.  Help me, I need a drink.  Or five...