Thursday, March 31, 2011

7 months!!

You are so funny, so cute, and so much fun.  I have enjoyed these last 7 months even though I am completely exhausted.  You are learning new tricks every day.  Your newest trick is getting up on your hands and knees and rocking back and forth... I think crawling is very close!  You have also started making a "piggy face".. you scrunch up your nose and breathe in and out quickly.. it is the cutest thing.  You are enjoying food so much.  I cannot believe how easy it is to feed you solids.  Your favorite is bananas, but you have tried pears, sweet potato, apples, and green beans.  I love making food for you.  You eat solid food about once a day, just to get a taste of it.  You still nurse all the time.  You are a great napper, and I only wish you would sleep as long at night as you do during the day.  We'll get there though.  You love to squeal like a terradactyl and you think it's quite funny.  You hate being restrained... so you're not really enjoying your jumparoo anymore. You love to play on the floor, you scoot and roll yourself where ever you want to go.  You are the sweetest little man, and we love you so very much, the Lord sure blessed us with you, we couldn't have asked for anyone better.  
Love you Hunka Chunka,

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Mother of the year.

Well, I won't be winning the "Mother of the Year" prize anytime soon...

Today, the local baby boutique had a car seat safety inspection and they were giving away a $100 gift card to one of the families who had their seat checked out.  I thought, oh yea, that sounds good!  I should get our's checked out and potentially win a free prize!

While Brayden was taking a nap, Leah and I cleaned out my car.  I let her play around in it while I vacuumed it out.  She was going from front to back, sitting in Brayden's car seat, sitting in her car seat, and just being plain goofy.  I finally got it all clean, and it was time for Leah's nap.  I put her down, and gave the monitor to Cavan (who was working outside)... strapped Brayden in his car seat, and drove to the store.

When we got there, we were greeted by 3 fire fighters.  They asked some questions, cooed at Brayden, and checked the seats.  The fire fighter turned to me and asked how my seat was being restrained.  I explained to him that it's an older car, so we have to use the seat belt to strap it in.  He looked at me, and said, "Umm, Ma'am, your car seat isn't strapped in at all!"  What???  Apparently, I never checked to make sure Leah didn't mess with anything.  But she must have clicked Brayden's seat belt out, and although I clicked him in as I was supposed to.. his seat was not attached to the car.  Oh man.  I don't know if the fire fighters believed me or not, but they did say, "don't worry, we aren't giving out tickets today!"  I felt so embarrassed, ashamed, and wanted to cry.  So, no "Mother of the Year 2011" for me... Maybe next year?

Oh.. he also said, "I could have potentially just saved your son's life!"  Gee, thanks...

This is Brayden sleeping peacefully today in his newly "clicked" in seat... :-)

Goodbye Cheese.

I think I finally found the culprit for Brayden's terrible nursing.  Dairy.  It made me sad at first knowing I wouldn't be able to eat cheese, ice cream, or milk... but yesterday was the first day of the trial, and he's so much better already.  He seems so much more comfortable.  I actually had happy tears last night as I nursed him... he is normally at his worst around bed time and he was so calm and comfortable... it's amazing how simple it was.

He slept pretty well last night compared to the last week.  He went down around 8:45 and slept until 12, I fed him, he went back to sleep until 3, I fed him, he went back to sleep until 4:45... then he decided to stay awake until 6:45, I fed him, and he fell asleep for about an hour while I got Leah up and ready.  So... compared to every 1-2 hours... he did well.  He is in such a wonderful mood this morning.  I just love it!

It is difficult finding non dairy organic meals... but I am working on it.  My weight is lower today than when I graduated high school... and I know not eating dairy isn't going to be nice to my weight.. I am already having trouble keeping it where it is, but at least I'm not having trouble losing it!  It pays off nursing two kids at once!

Enjoy the pictures!

 Leah giving baby Nora her "num nums"
 2 things... Leah is so tiny since she's been potty trained.. we have to roll all her pants!  And.. of course her nursing her baby is so adorable!

 Dancing with baby Nora

 Brayden super happy while eating bananas mixed with Mommy's milk.
 Leah and Grandpa in Daddy's new office... she loved the ladder!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Oh Boy.

Nursing Brayden to sleep tonight, I realized he is no longer my tiny baby.  He used to take up only a small part of my arm, and now... well, now he takes up my entire lap (and then some).  He is getting huge!  I have a feeling he'll be crawling before we know it.  He can get his entire belly off the ground, and he makes it look easy!  I know I say this often, but he is the biggest joy.  Even when he is super crabby (yes, he does get crabby) I can make him smile.

Leah is doing wonderful.  She hasn't had a potty accident in forever, and I don't really have to remind her anymore either.  I feel very confident going to the park or grocery store with her without a mistake.  She is so smart too.  She knows all her colors, shapes (even pentagon!), and letters.  She is getting to know her numbers, and we are spelling a few words too.  If she sees "LEAH" spelled on a piece of paper, she knows will get all excited and say, "Leah!!".  She can (with a tiny bit of help) count to 10 too.  She is so great. I am going to start her in home school preschool this summer.  She loves learning and I cannot wait to watch her grow and learn more.

She has quite the personality as well.  I was nursing Brayden the other day, and she was in her play room.  I thought she was coloring on her paper, but when I went into the room, she had colored on the baby monitor screen.  I asked her what she was doing, and she said... "Ut oh, Mommy... That's nah-ney!"  I just love how she says naughty!  Too funny!

She nurses her baby dolls often, and I really think it's cute.  It's funny (and wonderful) to me that she doesn't know what a bottle is.  She will tell me her baby is hungry and needs her "num nums".  Oh Leah...

Leah and Brayden are really starting to interact together.  Having the two kids so close in age (19 months apart) is starting to pay off.  Leah is young enough to think anything to do with Brayden is great, but old enough to get me a paci or a blanket if I need it.  She loves playing on the floor with him, and he eats up every second of his sister's attention.  She was playing with him tonight on the mat and she was kissing his feet and he was laughing so hard, then she would kiss his face, give him hugs, and roll him over... He though it was great.  We just sat back and watched (and got it on video too).  They are already such great buddies, I can't wait to see their relationship bloom even more.

We met Aubrey and Aunt Cassie at the park this morning.  Leah had a blast playing.  Aubrey loves the swings, but Leah has always been pretty timid about them.  Once Leah saw Aunt Cassie and Aubrey on the swings she wanted to go too.  She realized how much fun the swings can be, and didn't want to get off!  It was great!  She hates leaving the park, and cries almost every time... I think I need to get a better "treat" to give her on the ride home to bribe her back to the car!

All in all... My kids are wonderful.  I love staying at home with them.  I couldn't imagine not seeing them every second of every day.  My house may not always be perfectly organized, but I do my best.  My mother in law comes over every Tuesday and helps with the kids so I can get some things done, and my goodness is that a huge help!  Thank you, thank you, thank you Mom!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Family fun

We had such a great weekend.  Cavan has been working on his shed for the last couple of weeks... that included the weekends.  He decided to take Saturday off this week, and boy were we excited to spend some quality time with Dad.  It has been so nice here lately.  The weather is perfect!  We decided to go to the beach and play in the sand.  It was so much fun.  Leah is really starting to enjoy the ocean.  She had a blast running around, throwing sea shells into the water, and running barefoot in the sand.  It was so relaxing, and had a wonderful time with each other.  

Leah is obsessed with a couple of things... sippy cups, things on her head, and chairs.  There was this adorable little girl that had a pink beach chair.  Leah kept saying, "pink chair" the entire time.  Finally, the mother of the little girl said she could sit in it.  Leah was beaming with excitement.  I think we need to get her a beach chair!

Leah has always been a little timid with other kids.  She very much respects them, but has been, well, quite afraid of them in the past.  Aubrey changed that... Leah was very afraid of Aubrey once she started crawling, pulling her hair, and learning how to share her toys with her was hard too!  Just recently, Leah found out how much fun Aubrey is!  They really didn't interact very much in the past, but this weekend they really enjoyed each other.  They would follow each other, play in the tunnel together, jump on the trampoline together, and they even started hugging each other without us telling them to!  It was so cute, and I am so glad Leah has such a sweet cousin that is only a year younger than her.  Aubrey and Leah are so close in size too!  Leah only out weighs Aubrey by a pound.  They have such a great time together.  Enjoy the pictures of the two adorable girls!

As you can see... we were so excited they were hugging.
The girls jumping while Brayden was playing with his toy.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

First Food!

Brayden will be 7 months old in a couple of weeks, and he seems more eager than Leah ever was about wanting to eat something other than my milk.  Last night, I cut up some organic sweet potatoes and cooked them in my Beaba Baby Cook (love that thing!).  I kept the skin on because the Beaba purees it so fine.  He loved it!  I actually had to go back to the bowl and get more!  I couldn't believe it.  He is getting so big.  He is such a sweet little guy.  Enjoy a few pictures of him eating!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Diaper Laundry.

A new blogger friend (hello, Megan) wrote me and asked about washing diapers.  After I explained, in detail exactly what I do, I got yet another email (hello, Ashley) asking the same thing... so... My wash routine.. with some of the questions Megan and Ashley asked.

-The diaper companies recommend to wash no more than 18-24 diapers together at one time.  This is true with both top loaders and front loaders.  The reason for this isn't just because of how much waste is being tossed around, but also has to do with the elastic in your diapers.  If you let a diaper sit for more than 2-3 days, the ammonia in the diapers starts to eat away at the elastic, and your diapers won't last.  A tip for those with front loaders: Most machines will only use as much water as it "thinks" it needs for that size load.  Get some large bath towels (5-10) and add them in with your wash.. this will give you enough water to thoroughly clean and rinse your diapers.

-Don't ever use more than the recommended detergent.  Some people think because the diapers smell, to use more detergent.  This is not true.  The reason the diaper smells is most likely due to detergent build up.  If you aren't sure if you have detergent build up or not, get your diaper damp (also works on a freshly peed in diaper)... then take a whiff.  Does it stink? (Your diaper shouldn't stink when wet!) Kind of a musky ammonia smell?  Yep!  You have detergent build up.  This is not only caused by too much detergent, but is also caused when the diapers aren't rinsed well enough.  Even if you are rinsing 2-4 times, it may not be enough.  Every person's diaper wash routine is different.

-Use the SUN!  It's crazy how much the sun helps your diapers.  Sorry for all you folks in the north, but we've been having sun for a while now.  Any stains, lingering scents, and dingy diapers become sparkling new in the sun.  Really, try it!

-Only use cloth diaper SAFE detergents!!!  Never use normal clothing detergent, even Dreft is bad for diapers!

-Only use cloth diaper SAFE rash creams!  Many rash ointments are bad bad bad for cloth diapers.

-If your child has a rash with cloth diapers, make sure you are following the steps above... if you have questions, please ask!

Ok... here is my wash routine. (all on the largest and longest cycle possible)

COLD wash with 1 scoop Charlie's Soap
HOT wash with 2 scoops Rockin Green
COLD wash without detergent
Extra COLD rinse without detergent

Many people ask me why I use 2 soaps... honestly, I think it gets my diapers so much cleaner.  I never have stink issues, my kids never have a rash (to be honest, Brayden has never had a rash at all!), and I feel Charlie's Soap gets the stains out a little better than the Rockin Green, but the Rockin Green gets any stink out.

An easy way to find out if you still need to rinse.. when your diapers are agitating, if you see any bubbles.. you need to keep rinsing until you cant see any.

As far as stripping yucky diapers.. I found Funk Rock (from Rockin Green) is great at getting any ammonia smells out of diapers.  I haven't had to use it on any of my diapers, but I did wash a friend's diaper in the Funk Rock, and it smelled new after I was done.

So... I hope this helps, remember to rinse rinse rinse!  Diapers shouldn't smell!!  Please ask any questions you may have!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

I nurse a toddler.

I hear it time and time again... Are you nursing your new little one?  'yes, I am!'  Oh that is wonderful!  How long did you nurse your little girl for?  'She is still nursing!'  Wow, really (pause)... How old is she?  'two.'  Oh, that's (pause) great..!

Ha.. my goodness.  Isn't it funny that America is one of the only places in the world that thinks breastfeeding is weird or gross?  And who in their right mind would nurse a TODDLER???  Not only is it a special bonding time between Leah and I, but she is still getting all the antibodies from my milk.  She enjoys it, I enjoy it, and it benefits us both.

So yes, I nurse a toddler, and I like it.

This is one of my very favorite pictures taken by my husband.. Leah was just shy of 2 years old in this photo.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Oh the Wiggles.

Our fur babies are just that... very furry.  I can't remember a time when we didn't have dog hair everywhere.  They are crazy, obnoxious, and hairy.  I can't imagine our lives without them though.  Leah would be lost without her Delko.  He is 100% Leah's dog.  She can do anything to him.  She rides him like a horse, dresses him up, pokes his eyes, pulls his ears, "counts" his teeth, takes his toys, and hides his treats... and he loves her.  They are two peas in a pod.  As much as it's hilarious to watch... I do feel sorry for him sometimes.. a little.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

BPA Free... is it healthy?

I ran across a few disturbing articles yesterday... here's one of the links -

So... after making sure every plastic sippy cup, spoon, bowl, plate...ect. in my house was BPA free, now we're throwing them all out.  I am sick of trying to do the best thing for my children and come to find out it may be even more harmful than the thing we were avoiding.  I guess, in short, what it is saying is the BPA free plastics still have the same estrogen like chemical found in BPA plastics.  This chemical, with exposure, can cause hormone imbalances and fertility issues.  They are mostly concerned about little girls, but I cannot imagine giving a synthetic estrogen chemical to a boy is ok.

This makes me want everything natural.. toys, plates, cups, clothing... ect.  I am starting with what I believe is the most important... anything we eat/drink with.  We're switching all our sippy cups to glass.. that is the only thing I know is actually safe.  I found great ones from  We actually already have a few of their bottles for ourselves, and they just came out with a sippy cup adapter.  The bottles we have are very durable, so I am not really worried about them breaking... They come in adorable colors too :)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Potty Update...

Leah did wonderful today!  Cavan got up with her this morning and gave her a choice of either a diaper or undies.  She chose undies!  I was a little skeptical but she did wonderful!  I even had to run to the grocery store, the health food store, and the bank!  I brought her little potty with me, but she held it the entire time!  She is such a big girl.  I put a diaper on her for nap time, and sure enough she had a bm in it when she woke up.  It didn't surprise me at all.  She had one mistake this afternoon, but she told me right away.  Other than that.. she did amazing.  I am so proud of her!  It is going to be so nice only washing her diapers from nap and bed... Good girl!

Big boy!!

Brayden is now starting to sit up.  He is doing so well!  I am still in shock my baby boy is old enough to sit by himself.  He has been such a joy.  It's so hard to believe he is 6 months old now.  Even though he is only 6 months old, I cannot imagine my life without him.  I cannot imagine a day without him.  He is amazing.  Leah would be lost without her brother.  She is such an amazing big sister.  I know I have said this before, but I have some pretty amazingly cool kids.  I love them!

I have had a very busy couple of days... from trips to the park, story time, grocery shopping, cleaning, starting the process of potty training, and of course, taking care of my babies... I am exhausted.  It has been fun though all at the same time.

Leah has been doing really well as far as potty training goes.  She is now to the point of telling me she has to go before she has an accident.  She did have an incident today when she really wanted a diaper instead of her "undies".  I let her, as I don't want this to be a negative experience for her since she is so sensitive.  She wore the diaper for about 45 minutes, then told me she needed to go potty.  Although the diaper was wet, she ended up going in her potty.  I am so proud of the progress she is making.  I still wonder what in the world I am going to do when I go out to the park, stores, or anywhere for that matter.  I am one of those Moms... who would take a portable potty chair so their child doesn't have to use the nasty germ infested public toilets. As of right now, I am putting her in a diaper when we leave the house... but I am sure it'll become interesting once she is very consistent.  She still wont go "#2" in the potty... I am not sure what to do to make it "fun or good" to go in the potty... any tips?  Other than that.. she has been having fun showing off her new trick!

In honor of Brayden's 6 month birthday....

Dear Brayden,
6 entire months since you have been born.  You are such an amazing boy.  When I found out I was pregnant with a little boy, I was a little nervous as I didn't know what to expect.  I had my hopes and dreams, but you have far exceeded them.  You are the most amazing boy in my life.  I am so in love with your eyes, your smile, the way you stick your tongue out of your mouth.. just because, the way you flirt with every woman you meet, the way you laugh at the oddest things, how you sound like you're going to throw up when you laugh too hard, your easy going nature, and the way you smile at everyone you meet.   You are so wonderful Brayden.  Mommy loves you more than I can say.