February 16, 2016

a wild baby shower

I'm absolutely thrilled that very soon my best friend will be welcoming baby boy number two into her family.  So naturally, my mom and I had to throw a party.  Because I love throwing parties, every baby deserves to be celebrated, and I love my best friend.  So there's that.  I know that in some communities a shower for a second baby is tacky.  But seriously?  Babies are fun and parties are fun so why not?  Celebrate all the babies.

Meaghan and I were discussing her nursery plans via text, and she sent me a link to this elephant print she was thinking of purchasing.  Such a beautiful print in my opinion.  So I decided I was buying it for her and the party theme was born.  More or less.  Really I had no clue what I wanted to do.  Full on safari didn't seem right.  I searched 'adventure' in the baby showers, because two boys seems like an adventure, but that didn't seem right either.  So I just called it 'wild adventure', spray painted some animals, and used the nursery colors.  It works, right?

Bless my sweet mom.  She is a master party food maker, but photography with my Canon isn't really her thing.  I was nursing Thea/trying to get her to fall asleep before the party started so I conned my mom into snapping a few photos.  Most of them were out of focus (LOVE YOU MOM, SERIOUSLY), but you can still get the gist!


For food we had a veggie tray, fruit kebabs, spinach and artichoke bruschetta, Mexican pinwheels and chex mix.  Dessert included cake balls and cookies made by the fabulous Jenny, as well as brownie shooters that my mom whipped up.  To drink we offered water, and a punch that Meaghan's mom made.  I cut the paper for the garlands on my silhouette, and my mom made the table runner out of fabric from Hobby Lobby. 

Games included a couple of animal pregnancy themed games I found on the internet, along with try to come up with as many words out of baby's name as you can.  Definitely my kind of shower games, ones that don't require you to do anything ridiculous! We passed out a candle and a Cold Stone giftcard to the game winners.


Everyone seemed to have a good time and I'm so thankful we could shower Meaghan and Henry with some goodies.  And I have to toss this photo in here too.  Meaghan's little boy Lucas joined us at the tail end of the party.  Isn't he adorable?  Such a stud.  :o)


Meaghan I am so so excited for you.  I can't wait to meet Henry!

February 12, 2016

a day in {my} life

I set out to document a day when my mom was out of town, so I could record a day that I actually had to do everything by myself.  But in a lovely turn of events (lovely for me anyway), my parents ended up coming home early and my mama took care of me like she always does.  My mom is pretty much the best.  I'm beyond spoiled by her.

So this is a look at February 2nd.  Ryann is 5 years 10 months, Elsie is a few days shy of 3, and Thea is six months old.


12:31am.  I wake up to Thea crying.  Ugh.  Anything before 1:30am is generally really hard for me.  I'm grateful that we seem to have put the 5+ wake up nights behind us, but I'd still love to ditch this earlier one.  I go to the nursery to feed her.  I try to scroll instagram to keep myself awake but I almost drop the phone multiple times.  I think I nodded off for a minute or two.  Once she is finished eating I lay her back in the crib.  The clock reads 12:59am when I crawl back in bed.  Thea is rolling around and doesn't seem to be going right back to sleep, but she must not have been too pissy because I passed out pretty fast.

5:03am.  Yesssss.  Thank goodness.  Again I'd like to ditch that first wake up, but being woken up in the 5 o'clock hour doesn't bother me too much.  I know I can just get up for the day once I"m done feeding T, life is just easier that way. I also change her diaper this time.  If I try not to change her until we are officially up for the day her diaper usually leaks.  I briefly scroll instagram while I am feeding her, and then I browse Pinterest to finalize the menu for Elsie's birthday party.

5:32am.  I lay Thea back in her crib, then head to the bathroom to get myself ready to run.  I notice it's raining outside, it is so loud on our skylight.  I hope that it stops by the time we have to go anywhere.  After I'm dressed I check the monitor.  Thea is still rolling around but not crying.  I don't want to wake Christopher, but I do want to get on the treadmill and if I don't wake him a bit he probably won't hear her if she gets super pissed.  I give him two more minutes then let him know I'm heading down to the basement.

5:55am.  I hop on the treadmill for two miles.  I'm currently planning on doing a half April 16th, and I'm roughly following Hal Higdon's Novice 1 plan.  Really I'm trying to make sure I get in 3-4 runs a week, utilizing the distances he has.  I should be doing strength and cross training too, but right now I'm doing good if I manage a 4th run each week.  I watch HGTV while I'm running, there is a show on I haven't seen before (that is hard to find on HGTV, I've watched a lot of it in my life), called Renovate to Rent I think.

It isn't pretty, but it gets the job done!

6:20am.  Done on the treadmill.  I head upstairs for a drink and am surprised to find everyone still sleeping.  Usually Chris and Ryann are moving around by now.  I take advantage of the situation and sneak in a shower.  Chris is up by the time I'm done so I take a quick shower.  Then back downstairs for breakfast.

6:50am.  Ryann makes her way downstairs.  Impressive.  We rarely get past 6:30am without seeing her.  She works on some stuff from school.  I'm sure most people try to get it done the night before, but it just seems to work out better for us to have her do it in the morning when her sisters are still sleeping.  Occasionally she sleeps later and it makes it tough, but later is generally like 7:10am at the latest.  We've almost always got plenty of time in the morning for things.  Christopher works on Ryann's lunch.  Elsie is up by 7am and I make both her and Ryann Vans waffles in the toaster.  Once they are ready we all sit down to eat.  I've got some sweet potato hash topped with leftover carnitas and two fried eggs.  Pretty much my favorite breakfast right now.  Shortly after we start eating Elsie manages to dump a bowl full of beads everywhere.  Sweet.  Chris heads off to work.  The girls start fighting about something stupid while I'm doing the dishes.


7:29am.  Ryann goes to the bathroom and gets dressed.  I turn PJ Masks on for her and Elsie.  I run upstairs to grab clothes for Elsie and get her dressed as well, then I fix their hair.

7:53am.  I manage to sneak in blow drying my hair.  #winning  Then I make sure everything is ready for Ryann for school.  The girls shut the TV off at 8:00am and play until the bus comes.  I watch out the dining room window until I see it round the corner, then yell at Ryann to head outside.  I can't wait until it is nice again and the girls can play outside until the bus comes!


8:22am.  Ryann is off to school.  I have to wake up Thea so I can feed her a bit before we take Elsie to school.  I always debate whether or not I should wake her, or just throw her in the car seat right when we need to leave.  But I'm paranoid she'll be screaming if I put her in the car without feeding her.  She doesn't seem super eager to eat, I keep trying, but she just keeps unlatching and looking around.  Suppose I should have just let her sleep.  While I'm attempting to feed her Elsie runs off to the bathroom.  She does a pretty good job by herself, but I still don't love letting her go alone.  Fingers crossed she doesn't pee on the floor and actually washes her hands.  We all head downstairs to get on shoes and jackets and jump in the car.


8:58am.  We pull out of the driveway.  Their day starts at 9.  But bonus, it takes us 90 seconds to get to school.  Again, I can't WAIT for nice weather so we can walk there!  After Elsie is in her room I see the sign up sheet for conferences.  Man, I didn't realize we needed conferences for MMO (not actual preschool), and I also didn't realize they didn't have class for a week.  Sad freaking story.  I sign up and then Thea and I drive by my mom's house to pick up a package (they are out of town), except it's not there.  It was supposedly delivered the day before and I forgot to go grab it.  Crap.  I really hope it wasn't stolen.  We head back home and play for a little bit, then I decide to try and put on a little bit of make-up and straighten my hair.


9:44am.  Thea gets pissed real fast.  I guess maybe she's hungry?  Or tired?  Or both, or neither.  I really never can read her.  Either way, my getting ready turns into mascara and blush and a few passes with the straightener.  I take her to her room and change her diaper, then nurse her a bit before laying her down for a nap.

10:15am.  Thea is in her crib, and not real pleased about it at all.  I go to my room to edit some photos and hope she falls asleep quickly.

10:26am.  All is quiet in the nursery.  I go to the kitchen to grab the monitor and my water, then back to my room to continue editing.  Naturally I have two photos left that I want to edit when my mouse dies.  Back downstairs to grab a couple batteries, then back upstairs to finish the photos.  Once I'm done I get on my shoes and jacket.

11:20am.  I wake up Thea so we can go pick up Elsie.  Her face is so crusted in boogers.  I'm completely over all of these colds.  Where is spring?  Where is the nice weather?  I need it now!  When we arrive at school I find out they were petting a dog today?  Ugh.  Please don't let this aggravate Elsie's asthma.  I'm pretty sure her forms all say she is allergic to cats and dogs, but whatever.  Hopefully it isn't a big deal.  We head back home to make lunch.  Elsie 'takes care' of Thea while I get it ready.  I check on them at one point and Thea is trying so hard to crawl.  I am just not ready for that kid to be mobile.  Elsie has 'cold ham & cheese' for lunch.  She was obsessed with hot ham and cheese sandwiches for a bit, but now she doesn't have any interest, and prefers cold ham and cheese.  Whatever kiddo.  Elsie sits down to eat and I realize Thea needs a fresh diaper.  Of course while I'm changing her Elsie spills some squeeze pouch on her shirt and it is the end of the world.  After she is cleaned up I sit at the table and nurse Thea while Elsie eats.  I didn't write it down, but based on the pictures I'm pretty sure I stuck Thea in the jumperoo and ate some lunch after she was done nursing.  Leftover pizza spaghetti pie.  Mmmm good.


12:35pm.  We're all done eating so we head up to the playroom for a little bit before quiet time.  You can tell we've been playing at home the last few days, the room is a disaster.  I remember that Thea is another week older, so I need to snap a photo on my phone.  After that it is time to get E ready to be in her room.  She goes to the bathroom, then I read her a couple of books.  Once she is settled I get Thea ready for another nap, change her diaper, nurse her a bit, and lay her in her crib.


1:20pm.  The house is quiet, time to be productive!  First up is dishes.  Then I try to figure out the cat ears I'm going to make for Elsie's birthday party.  But I'm not really sure what I'm doing.  I give up on those and start trying to work on a cake topper.  But I don't really know what I want to do with that either.  I end up just cutting out random crap with my silhouette and making a couple of multi colored yarn poms.  I feel like I am being pretty unsuccessful with everything.  So much for productivity.


2:54pm.  Thea is fussing on the monitor.  That isn't a horrible nap, but it isn't exactly going to make the evening easy.  I start to clean up, then it seems like she has fallen back asleep.  It is after 3:00 and I realize Elsie hasn't come out of her room.  I crack open her door and she is passed the heck out in her bed.  Completely snuggled up and everything.  Well crap.  That should make for a long evening.  We don't really encourage her to nap anymore because she has a hard time going to bed if she does.  Back to crafting random crap.  I get started on a tutu for a stuffed cat.  Yup.  I'm that ridiculous.

3:09pm.  Ok now Thea really is awake.  And majorly pissed.  Yay.  I change her diaper and sit down to feed her.  Not long after that I hear the garage door.  Hooray for Grammy!  They came back from out of town early because my dad wasn't feeling well.  I'm sorry that he didn't feel great, but I can't say that I'm sad my mom is back.  She makes my life so much easier, I'm not sure how I'd survive three kids without her!  I take Thea downstairs to finish nursing her while chatting with my mom.  Just before 4:00 I decide to wake Elsie, and we all hang out until the bus comes.

4:17pm.  Ryann is home from school.  She is in one crazy mood.  Her behavior is driving me batty.  Anymore she is just a nut when she comes home from school.  I don't really know how to deal with it.  Ugh.  I get Ryann and Elsie ready for dance and then get them a snack.

4:39pm.  My mom takes Ryann and Elsie to dance.  She generally takes them, stays until they are done, and then brings them home.  But tonight is parent watch night and I haven't seen Elsie in class yet.  Plus I had promised them that I'd be coming to watch since Grammy was going to be out of town.  So once they are out the door I nurse Thea a little bit more just to make sure she won't be screaming at me, and then we get ready to leave.

5:09pm.  I pull out of the driveway with Thea.  We watch the big girls, walk around the 'mall' a little bit, and watch the end of their classes.  I tried to get Thea to fall asleep in the car seat for a short snooze, but no such luck.


6:10pm.  Back in the car to head home.  Dinnertime!  Except Ryann and Elsie don't feel like eating.  Lame.  Whatever, I feel like eating.  It's leftover paleo stuffed pepper soup for me.  Chris didn't seem overly excited by it, but I really liked it.  Chris gives the big girls a shower, and Thea is getting crabby so I nurse her yet again.  The big girls head back downstairs to watch a little bit of a movie.  In the meantime Thea gets her shower and then I get her ready for bed.  I let her nurse just a bit more until she is pretty much asleep.


7:23pm.  Thea is conked out in her crib.  I work on the dishes (why are there so many dishes in a day??) and do a little picking up on the main floor.  Ryann reads us her accelerated reader book, then it is time for the big girls to go to sleep.  As expected Elsie is rather wound up.  I lay with her for a bit before heading downstairs.  I browse instagram, and then whip up some 'ice cream'.  I'm still currently eating Whole30 compliant foods, so my ice cream is frozen banana and frozen mango whipped up in the food processor.  I top it with unsweetened coconut flakes and cashews and it is pretty damn good.  Though the Ben and Jerrys I saw in the freezer while locating the mango doesn't really sound all that bad either.


9:10pm.  Elsie still isn't asleep.  I can hear her running around in her room.  I start working on Thea's monthly post on my laptop.  Shortly after that Elsie comes down claiming she pooped in her diaper.  I change it, but there is nothing in there.  Chris takes her back upstairs and we hope that she will just fall asleep soon.  I spend a little more time working on Thea's post.

9:42pm.  I'm tired and can't really concentrate, so I give up.  I'm not being productive so I might as well sleep.  I brush my teeth, go to the bathroom, and snuggle under the covers.  Good night!

10:24pm.  Or not.  Thea is awake and crying.  I'm so groggy.  I hate when I'm woken up two hours or less into the night.  It just makes it so hard.  I toy with the idea of just rubbing her back and seeing if she'll fall back asleep, but I don't really feel like listening to her scream.  So I feed her yet again.

10:46pm.  I lay Thea back in her crib.  She is mad, but not full on screaming.  I watch her on the monitor for a few minutes.  She starts to taper off and I can't keep my eyes open any longer.  I assume she fell asleep quickly, I know I did.

February 6, 2016

thea - six months

I blinked and my baby is six months old.  Those middle of the night feedings seem never ending and the exhaustion lasts for days, but all of the sudden you have a six month old and you wonder where the time went.


Thea's six month check up went well.  She weighs 16lbs4oz and is 26.5 inches long.  She dropped to the 52nd and 74th percentiles respectively (after being in the 90th in both at two months).  She has dropped the last few appointments, but at the moment no one is concerned.  She certainly looks like she is eating enough.  Her weight jump was just so large in the first month that I think it is almost impossible to keep up with that.  The doctor did say, that if we try to cut out night feedings it is fine, however I need to make sure she is getting significant feeds during the day so she doesn't drop too much further.  She is mostly in 9 month and 6-12 month clothes, wearing a size three diaper, and who knows what size shoes.  We busted out our favorite Robeez boots that are 6-12 month size, because she manages to kick even moccasins off.


Our biggest feat this past month, was getting Thea out of the rock 'n play and putting herself to sleep.  The subject of sleep got to the point where I thought I was going to completely lose my mind.  She was waking up every 45-90 minutes needing me, only occasionally giving me a stretch of three hours.  She wouldn't stay asleep longer than 30 minutes in the crib.  She was still swaddled, despite being an all star roller.  It was bad.  It didn't help that the girl seems to have been battling a cold since Christmas.  I felt terrible trying to attempt any sleep training, but I could no longer function.  So we bit the bullet and did it.

My word I have never heard Thea scream like that.  The first night I was sure she was never ever going to fall asleep and she was just going to cry for hours.  But it only ended up lasting maybe 30 minutes.  I'm not going to go into a detailed play by play on the sleep training, but slowly but surely she is getting better about going to sleep on her own.  And we are down to only waking twice a night.  I'd prefer once, but going from five times down to two is pretty good.  Not to mention it isn't a two hour ordeal when she is up anymore either.  I nurse her, I put her back in the crib, I go to sleep.  Winning!


Thea is so close to being mobile its scary.  She is very efficient at rolling back to belly, is getting pretty good at rolling belly to back, and seems to be our only child that is figuring out rolling can be a means of transportation.  She'll roll, scoot herself in a circle and roll some more to try and get at what she wants.  And I wouldn't be surprised if she was doing some sort of crawling by the next monthly update.  She can pull her knees all the way underneath her, rocks back and forth, and tries to slide her legs forward before ultimately face planting.  I'm so not ready to have to watch her like a hawk.  She can sit unassisted for very brief periods of time, but she is much too intrigued with trying to grab EVERYTHING to stay upright for too long.


We made an attempt at baby food the last couple of days (so technically after she turned six months, January 31st, but whatever).  Despite the fact that my pediatrician was against it, we skipped rice and oatmeal and started with peas.  Sometimes I'm not sure my new pedi and I have the same views on parenting and raising babies, but for the moment I'm letting it slide.  Anyway, I had let Thea suck on a piece of fruit I was eating a couple times here and there, and she has been much more interested in watching us eat, so we decided to give the baby food a try.  The first spoonful that made contact with her mouth (going in her mouth is questionable, she didn't open very wide and it just kind smeared everywhere) made her face bunch all up.  But she kept going back for more.  She grabs the spoon and pulls it into her mouth and sucks the food off.  Hoping for another good eater like Elsie!  But with less digestive issues...

In other eating news nursing is still going just fine as far as I can tell.  She nurses often, but is pretty efficient and can be done in ten minutes if she needs to be.  She started pinching the back of my arms while she eats, that is oh so much fun.  We still haven't tried to give her a bottle.  Kind of hating myself a bit for that.  It would be nice to be able to leave her for an extended period of time.  But we'll get there.  Eventually.  Maybe.


Thea is without a doubt very much a mama's girl.  She is my velcro baby.  She'll tolerate Christopher or my mom holding her, but she isn't always pleased about it.  And if she is the least bit tired she wants nothing to do with anyone else.  She'll whine and fuss and pout out her lip.  And as soon as I take her back she'll look at the offending party like 'thank God what were you thinking?'.  It's pretty ridiculous.  I'd say she spends 50% or more of her awake time on my hip.  I need to figure out where I stashed my Becco carrier and do a refresher on a hip carry.  Thea still won't tolerate a wrap, but my arms could absolutely use a break! You'd think I'd be ripped the amount that I carry her around.


No definite ma or da sounds yet, but Thea definitely makes an mmmm sound a lot.  Usually when she's pissed.  So maybe she is working on saying mama?  Haha, yeah right.  When she is really tired or mad, but not crying, she'll scrunch her face all up, purse her lips, and blow very aggressive and angry raspberries.  It is hilarious.  And quite messy.  Between boogers and drool she is always a wet gooey mess.  I certainly won't be sad to see that phase pass.  All the drool + her constantly shoving her hands in her mouth makes everyone ask me if she is teething.  I can't see any yet, so I don't have a clue.  I'll hang on to her gummy smile as long as possible, gummy baby smiles are the best!


Her favorite things include chewing her toys to death, slapping me in the face while nursing, showers, trying to pull her sisters' hair, watching her sisters do pretty much anything, being in the jumperoo, and nursing.  But for real, Ryann and Elsie are pretty much the most amazing things in the world to her.  If either of them sit and talk to her or play with her I can generally buy myself another 10 minutes of happiness.


Happy half birthday baby girl.  I love you so much!