Saturday, April 30, 2016

Leila: 11 months old!

"Our sweet baby is almost one year old!" - Aiden

April 29th, 2016

Diaper size: 4
Clothing size: 12 - 18 months

Some nicknames we have for her are: Leggy and Leily
Heath issues: Big brother Aiden brought home a cold from school :(
Sleep: She continues to be a wonderful sleeper. She still loves her bunny and her unicorn and I love watching her in the monitor playing with them! 
Diet: Still nursing between 3 and 4 times a day. She eats almost everything we eat. She is not picky at all! 
Baby gear love: She loves the Baby Bjorn, hates the Ergo baby carrier. Of course, right?!
Likes: She loves upside down kisses from her brothers, seeing her brothers first thing in the morning, her cousin Harlow, her bunny and unicorn, chewing on the coffee table like a puppy, the list goes on and on, she is just a lover!
Dislikes: Still hates footballs and basketballs, getting new teeth, when daddy yells "Aaaaa yaaaaaa!" and big kisses. 
Milestones: She is balancing a little better and more controlled when she lets go of things. She is also walking with a walker! 

I literally told myself, "I am not ironing the fabric, she just rolls over and messes it up and doesn't even smile...." Today of all days, she took some of the best pictures. Maybe the key is after nap! 

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Is it really the last week of April?

I cannot believe that one year ago I was almost counting down until my sweet baby girl would be coming! Now, I am on the countdown to planning her first birthday party. First birthday's are always a big deal. At least I like to tell myself that - "YOU SURVIVED THE FIRST YEAR!" It is funny how you want all of the milestones to happen so quickly with your first baby, and you can't wait for them to roll over, crawl, walk, talk, etc. Then with each kid, you want time to slow way down, but it ends up going faster each time.

Then I have my oldest baby just about a month away from finishing Kindergarten. I cannot believe how much he has grown in the first year. He is reading books, well - reading everything, has passed all Kindergarten site words and has moved on to spelling words, he can do math faster than I can (I still have mommy brain - don't read too much in to that), and still writes sentences with either no space between words or a giant space between words... can't win them all!

Then there is my sweet, sweet Luke. I have a special soft spot for that kid - and he sure knows it. He has these golden brown eyes with a blue ring around them and I am probably wrapped a little too tightly around his finger. He cries too hard when I leave and tells me "two more minutes" about ten times and then asks for his whole she-bang when I leave which involves kisses, pound-its, high fives, and boops. I cannot believe he will be four this year... "I will miss you mom.." always softly rolling off of his tongue. *Be still my heart*

We went bowling with my family this past weekend after a fun getaway in Blackhawk (our mountain casino town) and I have a small moment where I though to myself, okay, I can let these kids grow up, we can do fun things and I can enjoy seeing the joy on their faces...

Will summer ever come?

Saturday, April 16, 2016

April showers bring... April snow storms?!

Does anyone else ever have those moments in life when you feel weak in your knees and you can feel the tears welling up in your eyes for something that should be so small, something that probably is considered so small by some, but none the less, it breaks your heart in a bittersweet kind of way?

This last year has brought our family, and me more specifically, an enormous amount of change. Last August I started "working" away from the house part time and in January I started working at a treatment facility for substance abuse as the final step to obtain my master's degree. Two weeks ago I had a site visit from my faculty supervisor and when we were walking up to my site supervisors office, she asked me "are things getting easier, are you finding a balance?" I couldn't help but feel the tears start to form in my eye as I answered "I am getting there." The truth is, I am not even close to being there, but after almost nine months, I feel like I should be getting there.

Going from being a stay at home mom to a working mom is a transition that I always knew would come, but after five years I still was not prepared for it. The first few weeks I had meals planned every night of the week, even the nights I would be late, and felt like I needed to do everything in the evening hours in order to maintain some stability for my family - even though I know they are more than capable of finding that stability on their own. After those few weeks, I cried in the shower a lot. There was no way to jump into working, finishing class work, taking care of the house, and cleaning up every the kids every day.

I had a good heart to heart and cry session with my best friend (Hey, Heath!) and she told me I needed to "let it go..." To be honest, being as Type A as I am, that is not easy. I now have dirty floors (dark, dirty floors - do not chose dark wood, ever), laundry in the basket and a husband that does laundry and includes dyed jeans with everyone else clothes so many loads have been ruined (bless his heart), dusty baseboards, un-fluffed pillows, and shit all over my counters. I am trying. A few things I have made sure to stay on top of is washing the sheets once a week and vacuuming upstairs once a week. Everything else is..... there, waiting for me to deal with it.

I also am having teary-eyed thoughts about how heavy Aiden is getting, not "fat" heavy, but the idea that I can barely lift him into the back of the SUV so he doesn't get mud on his pants before school, the idea that Leila is going to turn one soon, the idea that I am in the weaning stages of nursing my last baby, and the idea that this is my last few months of having Luke at home every day. I will be honest, being a mom has made me grouchy more days than I would like to admit, I have a hard time handling the constant fighting, constant crying and whining, constant begging for kids to eat the food I make, and constant stress of am I doing this right? Even as I have extensive education in psychology and human development, I wonder if I am making the right decisions for my kids and if I am treating them in a way that will help them grow into kind, mindful, and empathetic humans. No one tells you how hard these things are. Everyone tells you, sleep when the baby sleeps (yeah right), breastfeeding is better than bottle feeding (not true, Aiden is a genius), don't use bumpers because your child may die, etc. No one tells you how to be flexible when you are getting out of the door, how to understand lies and what the underlying message behind the lying means, how to deal with an overly sensitive child to make sure his needs, physical and emotional, are being met... you know, the hard things in life.

After many week of a self-induced pity party, I decided I do really need to let it go. This week, on Thursday - my only day off, we ventured out to the pool. I left dishes in the sink, sticky syrup on the counters, laundry in the basket all over the floors, and beds unmade. I needed a day to just hang out with my kids and see that sparkle in their eyes.

It was wonderful to hear the words "Mom, watch this!" hundreds of times and to see the boys encourage Leila, a.k.a. Miss Scared-y Cat, to play in the water. After about 2 hours she finally started having fun! 

It is bittersweet to see your children get older. I can start to see how things are going to get easier... how the boys are starting to do things on their own, and Leila will be there soon enough. But it is hard to know the baby days are in the past. I still have not emotionally come to terms to get rid of the baby gear, but my best friend (again, a saint) has told me to hang on to it and I will know when I am ready to get rid of things. Alright, so enough of my existential rambling... I hope everyone has a good weekend, and my fellow friends in Colorado stay warm! 

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Leila: 10 months old!

Every day and month Leila gets closer to one year I get a little more sad that our last baby is growing up! I so vividly remember when Aiden was ten months, I was SO excited for him to turn one, sleep better, and grow up and do more things.... it is funny how things change with each child. Now, I can't seem to slow time down and it is so bittersweet!!

March 29th, 2016

Diaper size: 4
Clothing size: 12 - 18 months

Some nicknames we have for her are: Leggy and Leily
Heath issues: No health issues, thank goodness! 
Sleep: She has been sleeping in longer in the morning (except on trash day because of people who roll their cans down the driveways far too early!) She goes to bed around 6:30 and wakes up between 9:00 and 9:30 and naps for three or so hours during the day!
Diet: Nursing between 3 and 4 times a day. She eats almost everything we eat. She choked on a hot dog piece this month - that was scary. 
Baby gear love: She officially out used her swing, the motor just died and did not swing back and forth anymore. We still keep one in the family room for days I am at work and she takes a bottle.... or in the morning when my wonderful husband lets me sleep in on the weekends!
Likes: She still LOVES her bunny and her unicorn that she sleeps with. She also loves the boys toys and gets so mad when they take them from her! She also loves to chew on lemons and limes...weirdo!
Dislikes: She is too funny, she has gained a fear of any balls...footballs, basketballs, tennis balls - she freaks and climbs up your shoulders and grips so tight! 
Milestones: She now crawls like a regular, robot baby.. I love watching her little arms go up and down and hearing the slap of fat baby hands on the wood floors! 

Happy ten months sweet girl! I am so excited to plan your birthday party! 

Saturday, April 2, 2016

....and the winner is!

Congratulations to our Freshly Picked winner!! 

Thank you to everyone that entered into our Freshly Picked Giveaway! Hopefully we will have the opportunity to do another one in the future!! I look forward to Following all of my new followers and learning a little bit more about your lives and sweet babes!