Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Summer Lovin'... Had Me a Blast

Life is great! I am currently recovering from working three 10-hour days with my little bug. It has been a long week, but it is a blessing I can take her to work with me while Ben's mom traveled to Italy. I have been trying to catch up on blogging since we've had so much fun the past few weeks. We have played outside a lot, running around aimlessly. :)
My sweet helper & me giving LB a bath.  

We spent Father's Day at my parents house with my parents and older brother's family. We attempted to get a new picture of all the grandkids now that LB is here... here is a typical shot - Casino (the white dog) photobombs EVERY picture, LB looks like she's falling out and half the kids aren't looking. Hilarious!
Ava, my oldest niece, LOVES frogs. Here she caught one and was showing me, N thinks its hysterical... he likes frogs as long as someone else is holding them. 

We then went to my grandmother's house last week with my mom, brother, sister-in-law, 2 nieces and nephew. It was a crazy blast. My nieces are 90 mph most of the time and N is usually 20 feet behind trying very hard to keep up. He LOVES them. He thinks they are both named 'Cara' although only one of them really is. He asks about Cara every day and when he sees a little red-headed girl, he says, CARA!!! 
 LB & Great-Grandma Ocean

Fishing off the pier

Even LB is fascinated with Cara.

LB was wonderful at the beach. All 4 of us slept in one room which made me very nervous at first that no one would get any sleep, but everyone did great! N was so worn out every day that he gladly got in bed with his paci and LB has gotten herself into a little routine which I am loving. The sleep training hasn't been 100% since we went on vacation, but the part that we worked on prior to going was her laying in her bed and putting herself to sleep which is going really well! I lay her down after her last feeding and she'll wiggle and talk for a few minutes before her little arms go above her head and out she goes. Presh. She's still waking up once, sometimes twice a night, but nurses quickly and goes back to bed. I really can't complain. 

 LB & Nana

Anyways, the beach was a blast, we stayed up late, rode bicycles, played in the sand, watched for lizards and manatees and really just had a great time together. 
My favorite little hoarder

We have about a month and a half left before school starts back 5 days a week and I am so eager to fill every day until then with fun memories. I am thankful that I have tomorrow off though so I can mentally catch back up. We have our first neighbor play date Friday so I'm excited to get to know some of our new neighbors. Then next week we may head to North Carolina to see Ben's grandparents for a couple of days and introduce LB. Lots of exciting things!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Summer Fun & LB 8 Week Check Up

Rain, rain, go away... 
Daddy wasn't thrilled about this when he walked in, but it WAS washable paint... no harm :)

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time off these past 8 weeks. We've had a lot of fun and I've enjoyed this maternity leave more because I was probably forced to stay awake and pay attention to my almost-2-year-old. :) I have technically started back to work, but since I am a 10-month employee and my principal is awesome, she is allowing me to work whenever I can to get in my 20-days during the summer. This means that I'm working about 2-days a week all summer with 2 weeks that I have the entire week off. Also, I have no childcare for LB while my mother-in-law is in Italy, so LB comes to work with me! It is wonderful!
Look what I can do!
N has cut back to just 3 days a week at school. Last week we went to the McWane Center (a hands-on-museum) with a good friend and her 18-month twins. N is 23 months currently. Then this weekend we had a small-group social at our house with 5 other couples and their children. It was really fun. One of the kids who came told his dad that he had "100-fun!" ha! I'm assuming that is good.

Today we had to go on a road trip to Birmingham for LB's 8 week check-up. (She'll be 8 weeks tomorrow.)
Her stats:
Weight: 75th percentile - 10lbs 9oz (I had just fed her, but still...)
Height: 95th percentile - 24 inches long
Head: 75th percentile - 15 inches
We have a big baby on our hands! She has gained 3 pounds in 5.5 weeks. The doctor was very pleased with her and slightly shocked at how 'tall' she is. They left off her percentile at her 2 weeks appointment, so I asked today and he said she was 'off the charts' at 22 inches. Which makes me think they measured her wrong at birth. They said she was just 19 inches... is it possible to grow 3 inches in 2 weeks and another 2" in just 5? We also never got a picture of her accurate weight, but several pictures of other weights.... which also makes me think we aren't sure what she really weighed... give or take an ounce. It was almost midnight, maybe the nurse was tired.
We started sleep training with LB 3 days ago. She had accomplished step 1 about a week ago which is nursing every 4 hours during the day. Step 2 is eliminating night feedings & Step 3 is sleeping/resting 12 hours. (N has done it since 16 weeks old very happily. He still sleeps 12 hours if we don't have to wake him up for school/work.) So this next step involves laying her down at 7 (my assigned bedtime for her) and letting her cry it out in a sense (she only cries for 2 minutes and then I go back in and hush her and put her paci in - which is really the only problem - I just can't pick her back up unless she's escalating). Last night she cried/yelled about her paci off and on for about 2 hours until it was time to eat again at 11. From 11 she slept until 4am, nursed and back to sleep until 6:30. Well, tonight is already better, we only had to go in there 4 times to put her paci back in and so far she's content. The elimination of night feedings will be my biggest struggle since she is nursing and I can't adjust it by ounces. The book says to slowly lessen the time she nurses by 3 minutes (instead of 3 ounces) every 3 nights. 2nd night feeding first, then 1st, then 3rd if there is one. So the 2-4am feeding is already down to only 9 minutes of nursing by her own will. The 11pm feeding is still a full 20-minutes, no 3rd feeding since 7am is when she should be waking anyway. I hope in 4 weeks we really will have this down.

I am ready for this step to be over already. I know it will work if I will be consistent, but its SO hard to just not go in there and scoop her up and let her sleep on me for an hour or so while I rock her :) (Thankfully the book says after 6 weeks she can be rocked to sleep once or twice a week, just not 2 days in a row, otherwise we'll build bad habits.)
Sweet brother! 
(I don't know how to do with his hair... its SO straight it goes right back like this no matter how hard I try to comb, move, anything.)
And then, he's done! LB almost fell on the floor :(
N's update:
He's HILARIOUS! Today he talked the ENTIRE time from Tuscaloosa to Birmingham and back. I understood most of what he said, but I'm pretty sure 75% of the time he wasn't even really talking to me, but to himself. He'd talk about his daddy and how he has a big truck. He'd say Bye Daddy! about 90 times. He'd sing/mimick the radio, then tell me 'hey mama' randomly. Just so funny. At the doctor, as Dr. A was trying to talk to me about LB, N got really close to him and said, "Hey!... Hey!... Hey!... Hey! Hey!" until Dr. A finally acknowledged him. N then proceeded to get every item out of the diaper bag and tell us whose it was. He came across one of my earrings and looked at it for a long time and then tried to give it to Dr. A. He decided that item was his, lol!

N is just a wonderful, kind-hearted little boy. He does throw the occasional tantrum when he doesn't get his way, but thankfully they don't last too long and don't involve throwing his body down or anything beyond some wailing and lots of tears. He's a wonderful helper. Ben told him to clean his toys up when we went to get him at church nursery yesterday and we then had to wait 10 minutes for N to clean up EVERY toy in the nursery. The worker kept telling him that was good, but N wasn't satisfied.

He talks about the potty a lot during the day and wants to sit on it any time someone else has to potty, but doesn't ever actually do anything. 

He gives lots of hugs and kisses and says 'bless you' & 'thank you' ALLLL the time. He'll say 'Love You' if you remind him too, but I can't wait until he volunteers it himself. :)

This is a very funny age, the things he says crack me up. 

Overall, even though I am tired, could use a pedicure and a nap, I wouldn't trade this time for anything. It is so sweet. I am very thankful LB is a mostly-easy going baby and N has adjusted so well to her being at home. He's bossy, but very sweet.

 Big slide at church fling

 Water-table at museum

 Look closely - we're in a HUGE bubble!!

 Find Nemo kids!

N's a hoarder... he puts EVERYTHING in his trucks, carts, etc.

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