Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The One Where I Let My Kid Eat Leaves

Last weekend, Hubs used his man toys to get all the leaves out of our yard.  We only have two trees on our property but they are pretty big and we have a lot of leaves.

I obviously took this as an opportunity for a photo shoot and was no help whatsoever with the actual cleaning up of the leaves.

 Ooo this must be like the other food they have been giving me.

 Uh guys, this s gross.

 Maybe this one tastes better...

 Nope.  Still gross.

This kid cracks me up.  He thought it was pretty fun until Hubs completely surrounded him with the leaves and he could barely see.  That caused a minor meltdown of sorts and Mommy had to rescue him.

Another fall event to cross off the bucket list.

(Sorry-not-sorry there are so many pictures in this post.  I couldn't narrow them down.)

Monday, November 18, 2013

The One with the Fall Cara Box

I participated in another Cara Box exchange.  Things have changed a little bit with the way Cara Box is organized.  The exchanges are now seasonal instead of monthly and we have more time to get to know our partners.  The swap started in September and boxes were mailed out at the end of October.

Cara Box

Cara Box was started by Kaitlyn at Wifessionals in an effort to get to know other bloggers and receive super fun mail!  Each exchange has a theme and you can read more about how Cara Box works here.  This box's theme was all about autumn.  The smells, the sights, the sounds, and everything in between.

I was paired up with Kari at The Pink Cow Mootique and Jessica from Nutshell Farms.  Kari is a teacher and has twin girls who are so adorable.  Jessica is a SAHM who amazed me with all of her awesome homemade food and canning skills.  It was so fun getting to know both ladies and I enjoyed picking out items for Jessica's Cara Box.  Head over to her blog to see what I sent her in the Cara Box.

My box from Kari arrived two weeks ago and I was so excited when it came in the mail.  I love getting mail and this time was no exception!  She is so thoughtful and really sweet.

In the box from Kari there were such great fall themed things.  There was a something for everyone in this box.  She sent me a yummy apple smelling candle, hot chocolate and a chocolate bar (which is surprisingly still in my fridge!), very pretty pink nail polishes, a chevron scarf (which I wore last week and got so many compliments on), an adorable shirt and bib for L, and some treats for Max.  She was so thoughtful when putting my box together.

Thanks so much Kari!

If you aren't already participating in the Cara Box exchange, I definitely recommend signing up in December for the next exchange.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The One with the Move

I mentioned in Liam's six-month update post that we have been working to transition him out of the swaddle.  He did pretty well with one arm out and eventually got used to having both arms out of the swaddle.  The change to no swaddle and just pajamas was no big deal and he has been sleeping like that for a week and a half or so.  Up until Friday night, he was in the Rock n' Play in our room.

That all changed Friday night when my baby made the move to his own room.

::cue Mommy tears and slight anxiety attack::

Having Liam in our room has been awesome.  He's a good sleeper, goes back to sleep pretty easily with a pacifier replacement if it's too early to be awake, and it's been quite convenient to have him right there when he needs something.

I prepared myself for a really tough weekend of sleep for everyone.

On Friday night, what I got was a longer time than usual to fall asleep, a couple of middle of the night pacifier replacements and rocking sessions in the Rock 'n Play, and an earlier than usual wake up on Saturday morning.  On Saturday night, the falling asleep time was only slightly longer than usual; there was only one wake up that needed Mommy; and L slept until his normal time.

As I sit here typing this, I have a baby sleeping in his own room contently after going to sleep with no help from me.  He did wake up crying about an hour ago, but his eyes never opened and it seemed like more of a "bad dream" situation than a true waking up.

May I add that if you are pregnant, get one of these video monitors.  So very worth it.

I haven't slept as well as L has, considering I have been waking up a lot and peeking over at the screen to check on him.  But, this weekend has gone much better than expected.  

I miss having him in our room, but I know he is only across the hallway (and may have gotten up several times the first night to go make sure he was still there, even after seeing him on the monitor).

Hope everyone had a good weekend!

Next up...the crib...

Friday, November 8, 2013

The One with the Six Month Update

I have a six-month old.  I have a six-month old.

I seriously have been repeating this to myself since Tuesday in an effort to make it sink in.  It still hasn't and I cannot believe six months has gone by since this little man entered our world.


Liam Michael you are


What a month we have had!  It has been exciting and filled with so much fun stuff and new developments.

What are your stats and what does the doctor say?
We saw Dr. G today and you are weighing in at 20 pounds, 5 ounces.  That's the 90th percentile for weight big boy!  You are 26 1/2 inches long and your height to weight ratio is right in proportion.  You had to have your head measured 3 times this afternoon because the nurse was sure she was making a mistake.  Your head is 45 1/2 centimeters around and that is off the charts apparently.  Dr. G said it is most likely familial macrocephaly, which basically means big heads run in the family (uh have you seen Daddy's head?!).  However, he wants to rule out any other causes of your big melon (like extra fluid) so we are going for an ultrasound of your head sometime in the next week or so.  Dr. G also told Mommy that bigger heads mean bigger brains and a recent study actually showed kids with bigger heads have slightly higher IQs.  Mommy always knew you were going to be super smart!  You got your 6 month shots and also the flu vaccine.  You're sitting next to me chatting away so I don't think they had any adverse effects.  Dr. G also gave us the go ahead to start solid foods

What are you eating?
You still eat four 8-ounce bottles of Similac Advance formula a day and you still have your 1-ounce bottle before bed every night.  Mommy decided to switch you to the level three nipple last week and it has definitely helped you take your bottles more easily again.  The plan is to start solid foods this weekend or next.  We are planning to follow a modified baby-led weaning (BLW) plan.  All this really means is that Mommy and Daddy are going to offer you real food instead of pureed baby foods.  You will feed yourself most of the time, but we will probably do some spoon feeding of baby cereal and yogurt at some point.  You will probably try sweet potatoes and avocados first.  The point of all this is to be able to feed you what we eat and also to encourage a healthy relationship with food from the beginning.  The philosophy is also that "food is for fun until age 1" because you will still get all your nutrients from formula.   We are looking forward to seeing your face when you try these new things!  Mommy already has the bibs and wipes ready for the mess!

When do you sleep and eat?
We have had some big changes this month and the coming months will hold even more on the sleep front.  You are officially sleeping with both arms out of your swaddle.  We have been transitioning you since shortly after you turned 5 months old.  We started with one arm out and moved to two arms out about 2 weeks ago.  You are still a wiggle worm and are often moving your arms like crazy now that they are free, but you have done a pretty good job putting yourself back to sleep.  The plan is to free you from the swaddle this weekend.  Mommy isn't ready for you to sleep in your crib yet, but that is coming...probably by Thanksgiving. You are still sleeping between 10 and 11 hours a night.  You are awake most mornings between 5:30 and 6:00 with a huge smile on your face.  You have your first bottle with Mommy in your room while you wake up.  Then you go visit with Daddy in bed and he loves the special time you have together in the morning while Mommy gets dressed.  You hang out in your highchair after this and play with your toys while Mommy and Daddy get ready to leave the house.  Your naps are still somewhat unpredictable, but you usually sleep for about 30 minutes sometime between 8:00 and 9:00.  Nana keeps you busy in your exersaucer or on your playmat until your second bottle around 10:00.  You usually take a longer nap sometime between then and your 2:00 bottle, but some days you fight your naps like crazy.  You usually have another short nap before Mommy gets home from work.  Lately, you have needed another short nap around 5:00, especially on the days you don't sleep during the day.  You have your last bottle around 6:00 and we start getting ready for bed by 6:45.  You are usually asleep between 7:00 and 7:30.

BabyLegs leg warmers make excellent arm warmers when transitioning out of the swaddle.

What do your routines look like?
Lots of the same with this, especially at night.  The nap routine is not happening and Mommy isn't sure you will ever find a pattern with that.  At night, you get your bath, massage, swaddle with arms out, small bottle, story, and song.  You get rocked for a few minutes in your room and then it's off to sleep in the Rock 'n Play in Mommy and Daddy's room.  This will change a little soon when you are out of the swaddle and sleeping in the Rock 'n Play in your room before you get moved to your crib.

What size clothes and diapers are you wearing?
You are wearing 6 month clothes, but Mommy is pulling out the 9 month ones this weekend.  As the weather gets cooler, you need some warmer clothes (although you are still always so hot!).  You are wearing size 3 diapers.

What are some things you love?
Your smile is contagious, little guy!  You love to smile and laugh, yell and scream, and talk to everyone.  You are so curious about everything around you and try to grab everything within your reach.  You love bright colors and patterns.  You are enjoying your exersaucer, but don't like to be alone in it when someone is in the other room.  You are pretty happy in your highchair and like to be able to see everything in the kitchen.  Cold teething toys are a favorite of yours and Nana discovered that you enjoy Mommy's rubber spatulas as well.  You still love walks in your stroller and rides in the car.  You love to stand and are always trying to pull yourself up using our hands anytime you are sitting.  You do like spending time in your crib kicking your feet and playing with your toys.  You really love Max and screech every time he walks by you.  If only he would stay still for longer so you could pet him!

What are some things you don't love?
You don't like to be alone for long and even though it's only for a few minutes to make a bottle or take Max out, you get mighty frustrated if there isn't someone to talk to.  Your personality is already quite strong and you show your frustration if things don't happen as quickly as you would like.  Up until about a month ago, you loved being rocked to sleep in someone's arms and slept best like that for your naps.  Without warning, you suddenly let us know that you no longer like that to happen.  If you are overtired or cranky, you get mighty mad if we try to put in your pacifier and rock you.  Often, a push in the stroller will make things better.

What can you do?
Your gross and fine motor skills have really taken off this month!  You are now sitting up with very little support.  You still tumble over to the sides sometimes, but you easily pull yourself back to sitting when you tip forward into the tripod position.  You put everything in your mouth and are doing a great job of grabbing for items you want.  While you aren't anywhere near crawling yet, you are using your knees and feet more when you are on your tummy.  You are such a strong little boy and stand with support.  You still haven't rolled from back to belly yet, but it should be coming soon.  You are pulling yourself to a sitting position from a reclined position.  You do this really funny move where you tighten and straighten your whole body and almost hold your breath whenever you get excited.  You laugh and giggle when we tickle you.  You also blow raspberries all.the.time and get so much drool all over yourself!

What are some firsts from this month?
Shortly before you turned 6-months old, we discovered your first tooth popping through.  Mommy had been feeling around your gums for weeks because you had been drooling like crazy, but nothing seemed to be happening.  Finally, with no warning and no real crankiness of your part, your first tooth appeared one morning.  It is on the left in the middle of your bottom gums.  Less than a week later, your second tooth popped through right next to the first one.  You haven't really complained too much about it and it's so cute to see those little toofers coming in.  You also celebrated your first Halloween.  You were a dinosaur and looked so darn cute in your costume.  Mommy dressed you in a lot of Halloween clothes this month and she doesn't even really like this holiday!  She even put you in a pumpkin!

What was Mommy's Mother of the Year moment this month?
Last week, Mommy had you sitting in your crib playing with your kick and play piano while she put some laundry away.  There was a blanket draped over both sides of the crib in case you tipped over and Mommy was watching you pretty closely.  However, in the split second she turned around, you managed to tumble over and bump your head on the crib.  Luckily, you hit the blanket and didn't seem to be too bothered by it, but Mommy felt pretty bad.

What are some of your nicknames?
Pumpkin, Peanut, Little Man

What are we looking forward to in the next month?
You are going to celebrate your first Thanksgiving this month.  Not a favorite holiday of Mommy's but it gets us one day closer to Christmas!  We will visit with family for Thanksgiving and most likely travel to Connecticut to see Mommy's side of the family.  We are looking forward to starting solid foods soon too.

We got lots of fun pictures this month during your photo shoot.  You are getting pretty wiggly!

We love you so much pumpkin and every day is so much fun!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The One with the Recipe Roundup

**Liam's 6 month post is coming on Friday after we go to visit Dr. G. and get all his stats.**

In the meantime, I thought I would do a post about some of the recipes I have been trying lately.

I pin things all the time on Pinterest and never quite get around to making them.

Since going back to work, I find it's much easier to meal plan on Saturday evenings or Sunday mornings for the whole week.  That way, I know what groceries I need and what we will be having most nights.  It's made things slightly less hectic in our house.

So here's what I've been making lately.  I realized as I went to type this post that I took no pictures of anything I've made, but they more or less came out looking like the pictures from the sites I got them on.

White Chicken Enchiladas from Joyful Momma's Kitchen
This recipe is repinned all the time on Pinterest so I figured I'd give it a shot.  It was super yummy and easy to make.  I used chicken tenderloins instead of the rotisserie chicken and cooked them in a pan with some olive oil, cumin, garlic salt, and paprika.  When they were cooked, I shredded them up and mixed them with the cheese.

Baked Buffalo Chicken Pasta from How Sweet Eats
This recipe had a little more prep work involved, but was definitely worth it.  You have to use freshly shredded cheese (as opposed to the bags of shredded stuff) to really keep the creamy consistency of the sauce.  I didn't use the gorgonzola (eww gross), but I did drizzle some ranch dressing over the top when it came out of the oven.  I also added a little more of the roux (flour and water) to make a thicker sauce.  Hubs was a big fan of this meal.

Marshmallow Resses Brownies from Inside BruCrew Life
These are probably the simplest jazzed up brownie recipe out there.  It was a great way to use up a bunch of my leftover Halloween candy.  These are definitely best eaten cold.

Antipasto Squares from Kevin and Amanda
I haven't actually made these yet, so I can't speak to their yumminess or ease, but they are tonight's dinner so I will keep you posted.  I think they look awesome so hopefully they are.

I have a few other recipes I'll be trying soon and posting about.  I promise to remember to take pictures of them!

And because I can't have a picture-less post...

This kid will be eating Mommy's cooking very soon.

Hope everyone is having a happy hump day!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The One with All the Halloween Outfits

L's first Halloween was a lot of fun for us.  He started the day in an outfit that I received in a Halloween exchange with my some of my forum friends.  It was super cute and got bonus points for having a monster on the bum.

I painted a pumpkin with L's name on it (don't worry, I won't quit my day job( to decorate the house and also as a prop for yet another photo shoot.  This was his second outfit of the day.

The weather here was crappy for Halloween night.  We had plans to take L around the neighborhood to a few houses to show him off in his costume.  We only made it across the street because it started to rain.

Our little man was a dinosaur (or dragon depending on who you ask) and once again, smiled through it all as Mommy played dress up with him.

Crappy picture, but the only decent one we managed to get before L had a meltdown about being in his hot costume!

While I still can't say I love this holiday, it is certainly more fun when you have a kiddo.  We are definitely looking forward to next year when Liam is more aware of what is going on.

Hope everyone had a good weekend!