Wednesday, May 23, 2012

9 Months

My little guy is nine months old (as of Sunday). It's hard to believe that he's just 3 short months away from his first birthday, and already older than the duration of my pregnancy! His personality is so easy going and friendly, that I imagine he won't be in want of friends when he gets older. Seriously, this kid's smile is killer. And his eyebrows? Well they make his face even more expressive, which is just awesome. I love watching his facial expressions and his reactions to different things.

Recently (the last 6 weeks or so) we've had a bit of a REALLY hard time with sleeping with him. Apparently, around 8 or 9 months old, some babies decide that sleep is totally unnecessary. And well Andrew was among them. It really took us by surprise, because he had been a "put down drowsy but awake" kid and he'd just sleep. He boycotted naps and eventually night time sleep as well. It was kind of a gradual thing. He would wake up and I would nurse and boom back to sleep. Until, it wasn't like that. Then he was up every hour like clockwork, nursing for a minute, then came either screaming or wanting to party. It didn't take long for stress levels to shoot through the roof and tempers to get short.

So at his 9 month appointment yesterday, I was convinced that our pediatrician would give us some magic cure that would have everyone back to sleeping an appropriate amount. I was thinking, ear infection or something along those lines. Because how could my sweet, smiley boy have any ulterior motives when waking up. Well, I was wrong. Medically he's perfect so we got the cry it out advice. He's not needing to nurse during the night anymore and is basically just seeing how many times he can get me to cave and get him. (And let me tell you, when your kids share a room, you cave a lot quicker to keep at least one child asleep.)

Tonight was the second night and he was out in less than 15 minutes. Last night was rough, more so on me than him I think. Mostly because I knew if I picked him up he would be my happy guy again. But I held out and he eventually fell asleep. (It took about an hour and a half, but felt much longer!) We had literally tried everything else out there: rocking, walking, singing, co-sleeping, bedsharing, white noise, lullaby music, TV on, lights on, cereal before bed, formula before bed, nightlights, etc. So I was kind of desperate, especially with a 2 year old that has recently discovered a love for waking up before 8:00!

Other than his sleeping, Andrew has really been a great baby! Like I said, his personality is so warm and he makes you want to snuggle him all day. Here's where we're at now:

  • He weighs 20 lbs exactly, only 5 less than big sister (49%) 
  • 18 month clothing
  • 28 inches tall (48%)
  • 19 inch head circumference (off the charts) No medical issue just a family history of big heads
  • Full time crawler now- and boy can he move fast
  • He has a knack for finding minuscule things in the rug and trying to eat them, even if you JUST vacuumed
  • Pulls to standing position in his crib, but only to his knees on other furniture
  • Walks when you hold his hands, he kind of swings his legs in a circle while taking steps, really cute
  • Loves playing peek-a-boo
  • Hates his jumper, mostly because he's realized I use it to contain him
  • Loves textured foods, I'm fairly certain he will be on just table foods soon. Baby food is too thin for him, the boy likes to chew things. (He ate about half a radish tonight, just chomped away at it.)
  • Size 4 diapers
  • Still only the 5 teeth he's had for the last few months, I keep thinking more are coming but they never show.
  • He's starting to figure out what his sippy cup is, but he really just likes to bang it on things.
  • LOVES talking, yelling, screeching, giggling, and laughing. It's even better if Sarah joins him.
Nine Months In

Nine Months Out

Nine Months Ago

Look how far we've come. And there's still so much journey ahead of us! Love you Andrew Ryan!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day

I realize that there are seasons to mothering. Sometimes you feel on top of the world. There are times when I can't imagine doing anything other than rocking a baby to sleep or deciphering toddler speak. Times when I absolutely love being down on the floor with my kiddos and taking in all the wonders of carpet fuzz! I LOVE hearing them laugh and play together and those times make me feel like the best mom in the universe, that I couldn't and shouldn't even think of doing anything more than being there soaking up time with the kids.

Unfortunately I haven't been feeling that a lot lately. I have been experiencing the opposite season. The season of annoyance and exhaustion. Of just not feeling adequate or even needed at all. Mostly I've been pretty self centered, wondering if anyone even appreciated all the self sacrificing I was doing? You know all the cleaning up messes, diaper changes, wiping of snotty noses, fighting sleepy kids at bedtime, the missed showers, etc.  I let the stress of moving and cramped quarters really influence my parenting. I had very little patience, my frustration level was always maxed out, and I was just irritable in general. I know, it sounds petty after seeing it all typed out there, but it's how I was feeling. But today really snapped me out of it. I finally realized that instead of having a justified annoyance about it all, I was just being mean and selfish. Despite all of that, my family came through and celebrated today in style. 

I signed up to be a mom. The good AND the bad. It can't always be puppies and rainbows and I can't get bent out of shape every time we have a tough time or circumstance come up. Reading the cards from my kids and Ryan really made appreciate the blessings that they are. My kids love me, like their eyes light up when I come in the room kind of love. Like they cry when I leave kind of love. My husband loves me and appreciates all I do, which was incredibly evident in his card today. He works hard to make sure I can have this time with our kids, to be an active stay at home mom. One who plays, who strives to say yes more than no, one who cuddles and kisses. He doesn't work all day so I can complain to him about the poopy diapers, the whining, and the bad attitudes from all of us. 

This Mother's Day was just a day of clarity for me. It showed me how blessed I am that I have two little people who call me Mommy and who are clamoring for my attention. And it lit a fire in me to be more intentional with them. 

Happy Mother's Day to all of you mamas out there!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

We're Home ... For Now

So I think it's safe to say that most of our boxes are unpacked. We have pretty much everything we need for us and the kids out in the open where it can be reached, which is a HUGE stress relief for me.

I don't know about anyone else, but living out of boxes is extremely stressful for me. Especially when you combine the boxes, the kids, the not knowing where everything is, two kids, and a limited amount of space. I'm not going to lie, I felt like we had made the wrong choice by moving to my parents' for a while there. Don't get me wrong, I'm grateful for this opportunity. The problem was that I was constantly in defensive mode as a mom. Worried about the kids getting into things they shouldn't, trying to get back to our normal routine, feeling like I wasn't getting enough done,  and the list goes on. I really felt like I was sucking as a mom because every other word out of my mouth was NO!

Now that things are settled, I feel like I have the space and the ability to let the kids be kids again. I don't feel like I'm in a pressure cooker anymore and I physically feel much more calm now that we "our space". My parents' house is pretty awesome in that the basement is pretty much like a two bedroom apartment complete with bathroom and kitchen area. So with most of the unpacking done down here, I feel like we finally have an area that is ours. I feel less like I am "invading" and disrupting the life my family has going on upstairs! And, I don't have to worry about packing/moving for at least 6 more months. Plenty of time to forget the stress of moving with two kids and two dogs right?

And joy of all joys, my computer is hooked back up thanks to Ryan! I can now get back to blogging (venting at times?) on a more regular basis and my phone's battery might actually stay charged!

Tomorrow is Mother's Day and I'm hoping to just enjoy my family and good food! With my main source of stress (boxes) eliminated, it's going to be much easier to relax and reflect on the blessings I have that call me Mommy/Mama. So to all you other mamas out there have a great day!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

8 months

Okay so this is a little over two weeks late, but the important thing is I am getting to it now right? Now that we are pretty much settled, I feel like we can breathe a bit easier and I have time to enjoy being a mom again. I can play with the kids or lie down with them during nap time without feeling like I should be doing something to help us get packed!
Anyway here's what our little man has been up to this month:

  • Wears 12 month clothes in nearly everything but has some 18 month items as well
  • Moved into size 4 diapers because the size 3's were cutting into his hunky thighs
  • He has perfected his wave. It's the most adorable back and forth wave, He does it on cue whenever someone says hi. He should be in parades because of how cute it is.
  • He can officially pull himself up into a siting position.
  • Crawling is here. It's a one armed pull across the floor. We call it the wounded army man crawl, but he isn't rolling to get around anymore.
  • He weighs at least 20 pounds (so says my parents' scale.)
  • We have a talker now. He says "ball", "dada" and something that sounds pretty close to "dog". But I'd say that ball was his first word.
  • He bonked his head pretty good yesterday and know has a giant purple bruise on his forehead
  • He loves food still. Eating solids 2-3 times a day. And he nurses about 5-7 times a day. He has stopped biting for the most part, but if he gets startled he will chomp down.
  • We are on a 3 naps a day schedule. He generally takes 2 long ones and a short evening nap.
  • Andrew now attempts to pull up on anything and everything. Most of the time he only gets to his knees, but there have been a few times where he has gotten a foot underneath him as well.
  • He's also really loud still. Lots of yells, screeches, and squawking.
  • Within the last few days he's learned to click his tongue and loves to do it all the time. He gets really excited when someone does it back to him.
  • Sleep is becoming a struggle, for some reason he decided to stop sleeping through the night but we are working on it.
It's crazy to think of how much he's changed already since birth. This age is my favorite for babies. This is when personalities really blossom and a sense of routine emerges.  Right now I am loving how happy and easy going my little guy is and how he meshes well within our family. It's truly amazing to look at him and see the little gears turning in his head and watching his reactions to the things around him. I'm really attempting to soak it all up this time (not always successfully) because I know how quickly they turn into toddlers this time around!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Happy May Day

We've had a stressful couple of weeks here because of our move. Not only were we packing and cleaning, but we had to decide what to put into storage for the next several months and WHERE it was all going to fit. We finally got it all somewhere and now we're faced with the daunting task of unpacking and sorting things out. 

Our transition here has been going well. Sarah has a big girl bed (twin size) and a whole new room and has done well with both. She loves sleeping in her bed and I love that she doesn't fight sleep as much. Plus it also helps that I think her tiny little body looks really adorable in that big old bed! It's a trundle bed so it's only about 6 inches off the ground to eliminate safety issues with falling. 

Andrew will transition into the crib as soon as we get up the energy to put it back together. After lugging boxes all over town and moving furniture, we just haven't been ready to move ahead with all the organizing and unpacking that needs to be done. Plus once the crib is put together, the kids will share a room which may bring up a whole slew of new issues. 

Anyway we've got a lot going on right but I promise to be back soon with an update on the littles and everything they have been accomplishing lately.