Monday, June 30, 2014

Happenings

Just dropping by my little corner of the internet to say that the Baums are alive and well!  We had a great weekend celebrating my nephew Mason's first birthday.  I did not take a single photo, shame!  

Things are crazy around here as usual and we are going on vacation this week so I'm not sure how much posting I'll be doing, but I hope to be back to our regularly scheduled program (and with another fun giveaway!) next week.

Because they make every post better, I'll leave you with a few recent pics of my babes.


I just want to eat him right up

First piggy tails

"Baby Grace, look at our piggy tails!"




Hope your weekend was great!


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Don't cry over spilled milk.

...said no nursing mother ever.



I am convinced that a man came up with that saying.  That is the only possible explanation for why it exists, because anyone who has ever had anything to do with breast milk would never ever make such a dumb, ignorant, ridiculous statement.

In case you're wondering, I didn't cry...but only barely.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

On Sleeping

One thing's for sure: there hasn't been much of it in the Baum house the last few nights. I swear, just when I think I've got the little stinker figured out he changes things up on me.

Remember how I mentioned that when I went back to work C decided to stop sleeping through the night?  After a little over a month of sleeping through until 6 or 6:30 am, he decided to start waking up at 4 or 4:30. I fed him and put him back down and the whole process took 10 minutes or less, but by that time in the morning my body had gotten enough sleep that I was having trouble getting back to sleep and therefore exhausted. True, waking up once overnight is not bad at all, but C had slept all the way through multiple times before so I knew he could do it!  He was genuinely hungry, though, so I chalked it up to a growth spurt and added a dream feed.  And it worked!  

..for about a week. Then he started breaking out of the miracle blanket. Homeboy LOVES being swaddled.  With Lilly, we loved the Summer Infant Swaddle Me swaddles, but C was too big and strong for those from day one so we switched to the baby straight jacket (also known as the miracle blanket). It has worked wonders except now Craft is getting too long for it, so he kicks his feet out and then somehow manages to get his arms out and wakes up as a result. I tried to outsmart him by putting a sleep sack overtop of the miracle blanket to see if that kept his feet from getting out, and that worked, too...


...for about two days. SIGH. 


Seriously?!  How did he manage not only to get his arms out of the internal swaddle, but then get them out of the correct holes in the sleep sack, too...multiple times?!?!?!  He's so proud of himself, too. 

We also tried the aden + anais swaddle with the snaps and I had high hopes but it was a disaster. 

SO. Now we're back to square one, but something has got to give because the past two nights C has been up hollering at 12, 2, 4, and 6 and I've been so tired the past two days that I could cry. Usually I have just gone in and put his paci in until 6 when I feed him but it's still exhausting!  

I wish they made a bigger miracle blanket, but alas they don't. I don't think Craft is ready to come out of the swaddle just yet, but I also am ready for him to get back to sleeping.  If I train him to sleep without it, I want it to be on a weekend and we won't  be here for the next two so I am desperate here. Does anyone have any ideas to get me through the next two weeks until we can sleep train? I posted in a local mom group and several folks recommended the woombie. I remembered that lucky for me, Jen gave me an old one of hers so we're trying it tonight. 


So far, so good but the night is still young. So, I'm open to suggestions. Help me out, friends!







Thursday, June 19, 2014

Lilly Says

If you follow me on Instagram you've already seen this, but it's too funny not to document on the blog as well.

Two nights ago, I was reading books to  Lilly before bed. When my Aunt Hopey came to visit and help out after Craft was born she brought a Clifford book and Lilly has been obsessed ever since.  She got a book about Clifford's good manners in her Easter basket and she loves it. We got to the part where Clifford goes to visit his sister and he always calls first and the following conversation ensued:

Lilly: Look Mommy, that's Clifford's sister, Beyoncé. 
Me, thinking I'd misunderstood: You're right, Lilly; that's Clifford's sister. What did you say her name was?
Lilly, in a very "duh, mom" tone of voice: Beyoncé, mommy. 
Me: Oh okay.  Who told you that?
Lilly: Daddy. 

And with that exchange, everything became clear.  Dan is a fool, and Lills makes me laugh!



Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Lately

I have been in a little bit of a funk lately when it comes to a lot of things, my little blog included.  Truth is, going back to work has been a huge adjustment.  I hit the ground running from day one, and trying to figure out our "new normal" at home has been a bit of an adjustment for all of us.  And honestly, most days I feel like the "real" work begins at the end of the work day.  

Dan's job has him working crazy hours until our wonderful legislators can agree on a budget and pass it, which means that, for now, I have both kids alone quite a bit.  I need to note that he is very good about coming home to see them between work and client dinners when he can, and when he's home he is beyond helpful.  He came home last night after work and actually cooked dinner even though he had a board meeting and wasn't going to be home to eat it.  t don't know where he finds the energy, I swear, but I know that I am very lucky to have him.  And don't get me wrong, I'm always so excited to see Lills and Craft when I get home from work and I miss the crap out of both of them during the day, but gosh they can be tiring.  

I walk in the door at 5:30, catch up with Carney and Auntie Syd on how the day went for a few minutes, then play with Lills for a short time until it's time to start dinner (normally around 6pm, 6:15 at the latest).  Starting dinner can be a little complicated because Craft is usually tired and needs a little catnap to get him through to bedtime.  Most days I'll get lucky and he'll take a 20-30 minute cat nap in his crib or in the swing, but the days that he doesn't can be tricky (and trying, to say the least).  I typically just make dinner for Lilly because it's easier than cooking a full meal since she won't eat it anyway and it seems like a lot of work for just one person (yours truly).  While Lilly eats, I make Craft's oatmeal and feed him and when he's done eating we sit and talk to Lilly while she finishes up because I'm pretty sure she's the slowest eater on the planet, even slower than her namesake which is a big statement to make.  I don't even bother trying to clean up dinner dishes or the playroom or the living room, bathroom, dining room, or pretty much any other room Hurricane Lilly steps foot in until after both kids are in bed.  

When Lills finishes dinner, it's bath time for both babes.  If Craft took a cat nap and is happy, I'll put his baby tub into the big tub with Lills and let the kids take a bath together.  If he wouldn't cat nap and is crabby, I will give Lilly the fastest bath in history and then let her watch a show while I give him a quick bath in the kitchen sink.  We then go back upstairs and I let Lilly wreak havoc on even more rooms (her room, my room, Craft's room) while I feed Craft, then she'll help me read him books, swaddle him and put him to bed (she loves this part and asks to help every night, which is really rather cute).  Then it's off to L's room for more books, a song, a snuggle and bed.  Lately, Craft has been fighting me a little at bedtime, so sometimes there is a little extra soothing involved to get him down.  More on that later, because I've been meaning to write a "HELP ME!  WHAT DO I DO ABOUT THIS?!" post.

Once both kids are in their beds it's time to clean up all of the messes, wash bottles and pump parts, make more bottles for the next day, get all of my things ready for the next day, maybe eat a bowl of cereal somewhere in there and most importantly drink wine.  Please do not take this post as complain-y - I choose to work and enjoy my job a lot even though it makes life after close-of-business pretty hectic.  I really just intended for this to be more of an explanation post, like, "I'm sure you can see why most nights I would much rather drink wine and watch trashy tv for an hour and then promptly go to bed than blog."  I keep waiting for things to settle down, but it seems like life has other plans.  Slow down, everything.  My babies are getting too big right before my eyes and I feel like I don't even have time to catch my breath and soak it all in.

Know what I do when I need a little pick-me-up from all of the crazy?  I'll tell ya 'cause I like ya: I watch this video that I was lucky enough to capture last week.



I dare you to even pretend that you can watch that without smiling.  You're welcome.

Happy hump day, friends!


Monday, June 16, 2014

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner

Howdy, friends!  Hope everyone had a great weekend.  Just wanted to hop in and announce the winner of the Freshly Picked Moccasins giveaway.

CONGRATS, QUINN!

I'll be in touch via e-mail to get you taken care of.  So fun!

I have another fun giveaway coming at ya towards the end of the week so be sure to stay tuned.  So many fun things to share!


Sunday, June 15, 2014

Happy Father's Day!

Wishing this guy the happiest of days today.


Thank you for our two beautiful babies and for being the absolute best daddy to them. We adore you!


Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Dad Brags

Father's Day is fast approaching, friends, and I can't help but reflect on how lucky I am to have both the best Daddy and the best husband.  Have y'all heard of Man Crates?  It's a pretty cool concept, really - they ship awesome gifts for men in custom wooden crates.  Anyway, my friends over at Man Crates are running a pretty cool #DadBrags campaign, and when they approached me to ask if I wanted to participate, I jumped at the opportunity and thought, what better time than now to introduce you all to my Daddy?!  




Ain't he cute?  He's pretty much the best, and I'm about to enlighten all of you as to why.

My daddy has always looked out for me.  He helped me choose boyfriends by scaring most of them away.  I'll never forget my very first prom, when daddy invited all of his friends over to sit on our front porch in rocking chairs with shot guns propped up against them to spit tobacco at my poor date's feet when he came to pick me up.  In fact, I distinctly remember my date telling me that one of dad's friends whispered to him, "I ain't her daddy.  I don't have to like ya - I'll kill ya."  True story.  Dad also tried really hard to boost my popularity in school by "embarrassing the snot out of me" (as he would say) every chance he got.  Like the time my freshman year in high school when he drove me to school in his huge, loud diesel truck and as I was halfway to the front door of the school rolled the windows down and sang along with the Dixie Chicks at the top of his lungs. I'll never forget how I saw a classmate on the way in who said, "Who is that weirdo?"  I responded that I had no clue, and dad chose that precise moment to start hollering, "Saaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyyrah, I llooovvveee you have a great day!!!!!"  Dad loves that story - he's pretty proud of it.


He has a sweet sense of style, too...
He has taught me lots of important life skills.  Like the one time I got in trouble (I can't even remember now what I did) and his punishment was to make me mow the lawn (five times!!!).  Those of you who know me know how well that went over.  Daddy told me that I should thank him because I could wear my bathing suit on the riding mower and get a tan while I was mowing.  No thanks.  I should state for the record that I did such a terrible job that I didn't have to fulfill that punishment - score one for me.  He also taught us how to pull loose teeth so the tooth fairy would come sooner (with pliers, because his fingers were too big to get a good grip on our little teeth - again: true story).  Most importantly, he taught me how to jump out of a swing.  Which may or may not have resulted in me breaking an arm.  

He has loads of sage advice to share.  Dad has doled out some real gems in the advice department over the years.  When we were younger, if we got hurt, he always offered to chop off whatever body part was ailing us before exclaiming, "It'll feel better when it quits hurting."  Whenever any of us wanted something new or wanted to do something that he was not inclined to get for us/let us do, he would always say, "Want in one hand, sh*t in the other, see which one fills up first."  Oh, and let's not forget how, when I got my first period, I was mortified because my Mom told my Dad.  He walked into the kitchen where I was sitting at the table, patted me on the head like a puppy and said, "You'll be okay, babe."  SLAP.  My sisters and I weren't ever quite sure whether even he knew what he was talking about.  :-)

He was a LOT of fun in college (my college, I mean, although I have no doubt that he was fun when he was in college as well).  Not only did he hand all the frat boys their tails on a platter when it came to drinking games, but he makes a mean beer pong table.  




He was also "beeper's" best customer, because he tipped generously and always treated the entire car to a late-night snack on our way home.  He wasn't so good at boone shots, though.

He is the best "Paw Paw" around.  Lilly, Mason and Craft think that Paw Paw is the greatest, and he teaches them all sorts of neat things like, for example, "pull my finger."  And have I mentioned that Lilly thinks that Cinderella's real name is "Cinderella you smella?"  Try to explain that one to her little girl friends who love princesses.





He is my sisters and my biggest cheerleader.  He's always been so proud of his girls.  He is a master spider killer and an amazing chef when it comes to breakfast or his "beans n' dogs."  He can build or fix anything you could ever possibly dream up.  He's excellent at moving his daughters and seemingly entire houses full of clothes, shoes and accessories in and out of various residencies, multiple times.  He's funny, smart, kind, tough and a big old sap when it comes to his family.  Whatever you do, though, don't ask him to change a diaper - he's avoided that for 30 years.  





I love ya, Daddy!  I only wish I'd had time to go through some of the archives at home prior to writing this post to pull out some better photos to share. :-)

Make sure you hop on over to the Man Crates website and brag on one of the men in your life on their #DadBrags page for a chance to win a Man Crate of your very own for that special daddy or hubby in your life.  I should note that in order to be qualified to be in the running for a free crate, you have to enter through Twitter prior to Father's Day (more info on the #DadBrags page).

We're in the home stretch of the work week!  Don't forget to enter the Freshly Picked Moccasins giveaway if you haven't done so already.


Monday, June 9, 2014

A fun little giveaway...

Y'ALL.  You know the giveaway I've been promising you?  Well, it's finally here and I'm SO EXCITED.  I have been dying to get my hands on this product for about a million years...definitely since before Craft was born.  Want a hint?

via my Instagram a few weeks ago
EEEEEEEEEEEEEEKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK!!!!!!!!!!!!  I'M SO HAPPY ABOUT THIS!  Can you tell?  

I can review our Freshly Picked moccasins in four short words: I. LOVE. these. shoes.  I think that they might be some of the cutest little shoes I ever did see!



I had my heart set on the weathered brown moccs for my little man.


via Freshly Picked
Aren't they darling?  Unfortunately for us, the weathered brown moccs were sold out in C's size, so we went with Walnut but I still love them.


via Freshly Picked
I would be lying to you if I didn't admit that I have almost ordered the Heirloom limited editions for Lilly about six times.  I would also be lying if I didn't admit that I have considered having aforementioned Heirloom limited editions shipped to my office to hide from my husband.  OY.  Hope he's not reading (love you, mean it!).


via Freshly Picked
Freshly Picked has a handy dandy little sizing chart that you can print to measure your little one's feet, easy peasy.  Craft is sporting a size one currently, which are still a little big but seeing as he's not yet mobile I'm okay with it and happy that he'll be able to wear them for a little while.



These shoes are really well made, friends.  The leather is so soft!  The elastic allows for some stretch (which is a good thing because my little man has some chunk on his fat little feet - shocking, I know!), but is snug enough to keep the shoes in place even though they are a little big right this second.



Even though Craft isn't mobile, there are certain occasions where he needs to wear shoes and I love that these are so versatile.



Whether or not this exact pair still fits (doubtful), I'll definitely have to invest in another pair when C starts to stand and walk.  I remember that Lillian only liked soft-soled shoes for the longest time, and I think these will be perfect and feel good on C's chubby little feet.



Also, these moccs are surprisingly easy to put on and take off of little moving feet, which says a lot because Craft likes to curl his little toes whenever I'm putting anything on his feet which makes putting most shoes on him nearly impossible.



I don't think I can rave enough.  LOVE. THESE.  SHOES.  And because I love all of you, my dear readers, I am excited to tell you that in honor of Craft's four-month birthday, he asked his friends over at Freshly Picked if he could share their shoes with one of his baum-squad-blog-reading-friends, and they generously agreed to send one of you lucky ducks a pair of moccs in the size and color of your choosing!



The contest ends on Friday at midnight, so don't wait too long!  Enter using the Rafflecopter below, and I'll announce the winner next week.  Best of luck and Happy Monday!

*Moccasins were provided for review by Freshly Picked, but all opinions expressed are my own.



a Rafflecopter giveaway


Sunday, June 8, 2014

Craft: Four Months Old

Welp, with all of the excitement of going back to work last week I was a slacker on the blog front and didn't get to officially wish sweet Craft a happy 4-month-birthday.



The week was hectic - Dan is in the middle of his busiest few weeks of the year at work while they're trying to pass the budget, plus we had another gala to attend on Thursday evening.  The good news is that no one was seriously injured and I managed to get both children fed and in bed pretty close to "on time" every night so I think we may all be starting to get the hang of things.  Thanks to Auntie Syd for the extra hands - her help has definitely been making our lives much easier!  These update posts are never short, so I'll get right to it.

Weight/Length:  Dan and I had a friendly wager going relating to our big boy's weight, and neither of us won because he ended up weighing less than we thought he did, ha!  Mean mama and Daddy.  Drum roll please…

Height:  25 inches/50th percentile (up from 23.5 inches/50th at his 2-month check-up)
Weight:  18 lbs, 11 oz/97th percentile (up from 16 lbs, 14.5 oz/>97th at 2 months)
Head:  17 inches/75th percentile (up from 16.5 inches/85th at 2 months)


At the doctor for his 4-month check-up!
C was trying to impress everyone with his baby vocabulary.  He was cooing and giggling (loudly) and being a regular little ham while we were waiting to see Dr. G!  
For the record, my guess was 20 lbs and Dan's was 22.  I was surprised to look back at my records and note that Craft isn't actually that much bigger than big sister Lilly was at 4 months old (she was 16 lbs, 3.5 oz and 25 inches long).

Sleep:  We are once again lucky ducks and have another (for the most part) pretty good sleeper…at least until the past week or so, ugh.  Up until this past week, Craft's night sleep was pretty predictable but we seem to have gotten hit by the 4-month sleep regression and I hate it.  If he is being "normal," he goes down between 7:30-8:00 pm and sleeps until sometime around 6:00 am, eats and then goes back to sleep until 8:00 or 8:30am.  For the past week, though, he's decided to get up and eat earlier - most mornings around 4am, but last night he was up at 10p, 2a and 7a.  So weird.  Dr. G said this is totally normal and assured me that I'm not creating bad habits by feeding him when he wakes - in fact she agreed with my opinion that it's a much quicker way to get him to go back to sleep and told me that he'll be out of it soon.  Fingers crossed.

Naps are getting better but still not very predictable.  Again, Dr. G said he probably won't start putting himself into any kind of consistent routine until around 6 months.  Currently, the only thing predictable about Craft's daytime sleep patterns is that he is ready to go to sleep around 2 hours (sometimes less) after he woke up from his last nap.  Additionally, his first nap of the day is typically pretty short - only around 45 minutes or an hour.  Sometimes the rest of his naps for the day are more frequent and only last 45 minutes or an hour, and other days he stretches them out and gives me a couple of 2-hour naps or several 45 minute naps and then one three-hour nap.  The inconsistency makes planning things tricky, but luckily he's still at the age where he'll sleep pretty easily in his car seat or in the baby carrier when we're on the go.

Feeding:  There really isn't a lot of change here from Craft's 3-month update.  He's still eating around every 3-4 hours, usually 4 hours unless it's close to a nap and I force-feed him a little early in hopes for an uninterrupted (and longer) nap.  He is also still spitting up some but again, not nearly as frequently or as much in amount as previously.  

Craft has done really well taking the bottle while I've been at work (hallelujah!), and Syd says he also seems to spit up less on days when he takes bottles, so I'm wondering if I am drowning him when he nurses.  We had a few adjustment days after I went back to work, but hopefully I've figured out the proper amount of pumping because he did better switching back and forth between bottle and b00b as the week progressed.  He currently takes a 5-oz bottle every four-ish hours - sometimes he finishes it, other times he doesn't.

One more exciting thing to note, Craft got the okay from the doctor to start solids!  He got his first taste of oatmeal this week (doctor's recommendation was to skip the rice cereal, I can't remember why but we went with it).  He is pretty good at eating with the spoon but didn't seem too excited with the new tastes, ha!



I can't wait to move on to more fun things in a few weeks (banana, avocado, apple blueberry, etc.).

Firsts This Month:  Oy, lots of these and I'm sure I'll still leave something out.  For one thing, we took Craft to the beach for the first time to visit Grandma Susie and Papa over Memorial Day Weekend.  I unfortunately never got around to blogging those photos, so here are a few of all of the fun we had during the long weekend!


















Craft also went swimming for the first time in our neighborhood pool.




Craft has also been sitting up "by himself" in various contraptions such as the jumperoo, door jumper, bumbo and various other seats.  I think that as of his 3-month post he was sitting in the bumbo some, but he's getting much better at it and has been able to sit in other seats as well for longer and longer periods of time.



Poor guy.  Not only does he have to sit in a purple bumbo but he has to endure big sister/Aunt Syd putting bows in his hair!




Developments:  Craft has really started "talking" this month.  He was making noises previously, but lately it seems like if he's awake, he's talking all the time.  He loves to explore his vocal cords - both the different sounds he can make and the varying volumes  (the loudest sounds he can make are his most favorite!).



C is very purposeful now when he is using his hands.  He still "bats" at his toys but it no longer seems accidental.  He can also pick toys up and hold them, and he's very oral because most things these days go straight to his mouth.  He is drooling a LOT, which could be teething but also is just normal at his age.  He has really good head control and continues to roll over from his back to his tummy (he still hasn't gone the other way, probably because he hates tummy time so he rarely does it but his head isn't flat and clearly he has good control of it so the doctor didn't protest).  Dr. G was particularly impressed with that trick, which he demonstrated while we were visiting her on Friday.  She said it's much harder for babies to roll from back to tummy, especially chunky babies with a lot of weight to get over.  Overachiever, just like his sister!  Also, Craft freely gives smiles and we have witnessed (quite a few of) our first belly laughs.  I tried to get it on camera last week but he has the hiccups so you can't really tell he's laughing, but gosh it is the best sound and SO cute.  It is amazing the silly things we will do over and over again to hear that sweet giggle!  He thinks that Lilly is the funniest.

I wrote in Lilly's four-month update that around this time she started consciously finding her thumb some instead of just chewing on her whole hand, and I speculated as to whether she would be a thumb sucker (yes).  Craft is doing the same, so we'll see what that means.  I have been feeling like he loves the paci more than Lills did at this age, but according to photos that is not the case, so we'll see!

Likes:  Not a ton of changes here: bath. sleeping. eating. bumbo. door jumper. jumper. Lilly. Layla. Daddy. Aunt Syd. Carney. being outside. walks. swinging. being worn. ceiling fans. drooling. putting things in his mouth. his paci. talking/babbling/exploring his vocal cords. belly laughing. kicking his legs. singing. snuggling. more eating.

Notice I left the piano mat off this month - C has decided he hates it.  I think I figured out that the toys hang down too low/close to his face, because if I take the toys off he doesn't mind it as much.

Dislikes:  Again not too many changes.  Craft is truly one of the happiest babies, and is pretty good unless he's hungry, tired, has a poop or is gassy.  He is also getting better with the car seat, thank the Lord!

What I'm Thankful For:  Carney and Aunt Syd!  They take such good care of my babies for me and were so good about texting me and sending me pictures and videos last week.  It makes my days at at work a little easier knowing that everyone is happy (for the most part) at home!  Also my coworkers, family and friends for checking in on me throughout the week.

What I'm Looking Forward To:  We have lots of fun things coming up over the next few weeks: a neighborhood food truck rodeo, birthday parties, LOTS of pool time, Mason's first birthday party, and a trip to the mountains.  Yay!

Next Pediatrician Appointment:  August 6 for his 6-month appointment with Dr. V.

I'm off to finish laundry, bottle and pump part washing, etc. but I shall leave you with some more photos from our little 4-month photo shoot.  











Hope your weekend was great!


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