Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter

We had a great (and exhausting) weekend.  We spent our first night away without Max, and it was fun to some time with my hubby.  We went into the city for a food tour and dinner out with friends, and Max enjoyed the weekend with his Lulu and Pops!  Then, we came home this afternoon to enjoy a yummy Easter dinner made by Lulu.

Heading out on the town in NYC with my hubs

Tomorrow we leave for Florida to spend the week with my BFF Ang, and her sweet little girl Evelyn.  I CANNOT WAIT to wear flipflops and enjoy some sunshine.  I know that Max will love spending time with Evelyn in the pool.  We've been SO busy, and even though I have LOTS of ideas for posts I want to write, it just hasn't been happening.  I'm choosing to live life and enjoy all of these little moments with my family, and I will get around to documenting them at some point.

Here are a few pictures from our Easter photo shoot.  I hope you and your family had a happy Easter!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Six Months Old-March 19, 2013

Six Months Old (1/2 year)
March 19, 2013

Your Monthly Stats

Height:  27 1/4 inches (77%ile)

Weight: 17 pounds, 13 ounces (56%ile)

Head Circumference: 43 cm (39%ile)

Consider this a warning-->PHOTO OVERLOAD.  I could not choose.  These are the MANY faces of Max that we get to see every day.  He has SO much personality--I love it!

Hair: You are such a little blondie!  Lots of thicker hair has come in this month.  It looks so cute when we spike it up after bathtime.  

Eyes: I think it's safe to say that your eyes are going to stay blue.  They look so blue and sparkly in pictures.  

Diaper Size: Still in Size 3's, and you probably will be for a while.

Clothes:  You're wearing 6-9 month clothes (onesies and stretchie pants), 6-12 month big boy pants (jeans and khakis), and 6-12 month sleepers.  Some of the 6 month clothes are getting a little snug, but most of them still fit pretty well.  More than anything, you love to be "in the nude".  Clothes are for the birds.  

Yay---We made it to 6 months with exclusive breastfeeding, and I am SO proud of BOTH of us. This road hasn't always been easy, but I cannot even explain how happy I am that we stuck with it.  You are strong, healthy, and growing perfectly because of it!  This week, we are going to begin giving you solid foods.  I've done a lot of research on the "first foods" to try, and I'll be making all of your baby food myself.  We're going to be starting with organic steel cut oats.  I know that you will LOVE eating food, because you've been trying to grab food off of our plates for a couple of weeks now. Your main source of nutrition will still be breastmilk, and you'll continue to have about 32 ounces a day through nursing.  Our ultimate goal is to make it to one year!  You also started drinking water out of a sippy cup this month.  You make a big mess, and most of the water ends up all over you.  But, you LOVE to drink water out of sippy cups, water bottles, or our grown-up cups.  You have been a BIG drooler this month too--just salivating over the idea of food.  

*Your sound machine-After learning that the Sleep Sheep shuts off after 45 minutes, you began to wake up every 45 minutes.  So, we got you a new sound machine that plays continuously, and it's worked like a charm.  We also got a travel sound machine that attaches to your carseat.  It works wonders when we're on the road.  
*Grabbing EVERYTHING!  This is pretty self explanatory.  You are into everything, and you especially love to grab things that aren't really yours (cell phones, the remote control, etc).  
*Sitting in the highchair:  We tried this out for the first time at Grandma and Bup's house, and you love being up high where you can be a part of the dinner conversation.  We put ours together when we got home from Boston, and LuLu has one at her house too.  Now you'll never feel left out again!
*Being tossed in the air--particularly by Daddy.  You laugh, and laugh, and laugh.  And it makes mommy smile to see you having so much fun with your Daddy.
*Standing outside of Daddy's office door- Notice a theme here?  You have become much more smiley and happy to see Daddy.  He loves looking up from his chair to see you smiling at him.
*Walks in the stroller-You love the fresh air.  I can't wait until the weather gets warmer so that we can do this every day.  Go away snow!
*Playing with your friends at playgroup-It's so cute to see all of you starting to interact more.  You steal each other's toys, smile and laugh, and poke at each other.  

*naps-  You are getting better at this, but we still have some work to do.  Even though you sleep in your crib at night, you still don't like to go in there during the day.  Lately, you've been taking naps in the swing.  I almost packed it up and put it away, thinking that you had outgrown it.  Then I tried it one day, and you quietly sat for 15 minutes just chatting to yourself before you eventually fell asleep.  We've used it for naps for the past few days now, and you seem to wake up much happier.  It's also giving Mommy some time to get other things done!
*being left alone-All of a sudden this month, you decided that you DID NOT want to be left alone.  There were several days when you were VERY upset when I even stood up and took two steps away from you.  I ended up carrying you around ALL DAY LONG.  The past few days have been a little better.  If you're playing in the family room, I continue to talk to you or sing to you as I try to do something in the kitchen.  This has been okay as long as you're happy to be playing with something.  When you are tired, you do not like to be left to play on your own.  
*being overtired-We made the mistake of staying out past your bedtime one night last week.  I knew you were tired and ready for sleep, but we tried to stretch it out.  BIG mistake.  You became overtired and then refused to sleep when we got home.  I tried to get you to fall asleep for 3 1/2 hours, and eventually we just fell asleep together on the guest room bed.  Lesson learned--Don't mess with bedtime.  

Social Skills: 
We have had lots of playdates with your friends, met friends and family out at restaurants, and made a few trips to the mall.  You are a little social butterfly--you get that from Daddy.  

Remember when you used to go to sleep at 8:30 and sleep through the night until 7:00 am??  Yea....I miss that.  Let's start doing that again.  We've had some ups and downs with sleep this month.  For the most part, you're showing sleepy signs and ready for bed around 7:30 each night.  Then you wake up for a feeding sometime in the middle of the night--usually around 3:00.  After that, you're up every two hours to eat.  I'm hoping with the introduction of solid foods, we can stretch this out just a little bit longer. Although I'm sleepy when I first hear you stirring in the crib, I don't mind feeding and snuggling you once I'm up.  It's our special time together.  

You have gotten SO strong this month!  You are sitting up on your own for extended periods of time.  While sitting, you reach for things and are able to pull yourself back up.  You still occasionally topple over, because you've reached too far and can't get yourself upright again.  But, it doesn't seem to bother you when you fall over.  Usually you're laying there smiling, and you think it's funny.  On the exersaucer, you become very frustrated with the "dragonfly" that is a toy on top.  You try with all of your might to pull it off in order to put it in your mouth.  Several times, you've pulled it so hard that you've smacked yourself in the face with it.  You are determined.  When we lay you on your belly, you automatically roll right back over onto your back.  You're still not rolling from back to belly, but I think that may be because you just prefer being on your back where you can see everything.  

Dear Maxwell, 
     You are half of a year old today.  How did that happen?  I was watching videos of you today from when we first brought you home from the hospital.  You were SO teeny-tiny, and we thought you were so fragile.  We were so careful to hold you gently, move slowly when carrying you, and speak softly when around you.  Not only have you grown so much bigger, but your face has changed so much.  Looking back at those videos and pictures, I remember it clearly, but at the same time I don't.  It feels like another lifetime ago.  If anyone had tried to explain to me how much I could love a child, I wouldn't have been able to comprehend it before I met you.  Now I get it.  
     Just as the first five months, this month has been a big month for change and growth.  Today on your 6-month birthday, I feel like you're growing up way too fast  Just in this one day you have:  

1.  Sprouted two little baby chicklet teeth.  You must have been waiting for this special day.  We knew it was coming soon, because you've been clawing at your mouth and drooling through several outfits a day.  Sure enough, when we were at Lulu's this afternoon, I reached my fingers in there and there are two sharp, pointy teeth! 
2.  You just put yourself to sleep in your crib.  Normally, I put you down at night fully asleep.  You don't typically wake up if you're already asleep.  Tonight I put you down and your eyes popped wide open.  You didn't cry at all.  I sat on the stairs watching you on the monitor, and you laid there babbling away to yourself.  You scooted yourself all around the crib, putting your legs up on the rails and banging them.  I've never seen you do that before.  Eventually you found your way back to the middle of the crib, closed your eyes, and fell asleep.  That's where you are resting now.  
3.  You flipped over from your back to your belly twice.  You've only done this once before, but today you did it twice without any effort.  I'm wondering if I'll find you on your belly in your crib in the morning.  
4.  Started to do a little army crawl.  You were playing with Uncle Tim, and he was letting you push off of his hand while you were on your belly.  You kept inching forward trying to get a toy we placed out of your reach.  

I'm not sure I'm ready for all of these changes and growing up in one day!  As sad as it makes me that you're not a little baby anymore, I'm so proud of you for getting so smart and strong.  It's amazing to see every little change in you.  I love your Daddy so much for giving me you and letting me stay home to to see all of these exciting changes.  It is the best gift ever.  I love you buddy.  xoxo

Love, Mommy

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Sunday Social

Sunday Social
Happy Sunday Social and Happy St. Patricks Day! I hope your day was full of luck and sneaky leprechaun fun!  We had a great family day with our little leprechaun.
This is how his legs are ALL of the time when he lays down.  Don't you think his abs would get tired??  He should have abs of steel.  

This Weeks Questions:
1. Favorite thing to do on a rainy day? Stay in my jammies all day, make a big breakfast, drink a hot cup of coffee, have dinner cooking all day long in the dutch oven or the crockpot, and enjoy naps with my two lovebugs.  
2. Favorite thing to do on a Summer weekend?  Spend it at the pool, of course!
3. Favorite Spring accessory?  Sunglasses and light scarves
4. Favorite way to spend a Winter day? Cuddled up on the couch watching movies, wearing fleece socks and sweats, drinking a warm cup of pumpkin spice or gingerbread coffee. 
5. What is your favorite season and why? Fall--Love the colors, the crisp air in the mornings, the crunch of leaves, boots and leggings, my anniversary and Max's birthday.  
6.  Best birthday you ever had?  Probably a tie between my 24th birthday and my 28th birthday.   My 24th was my first birthday spent with JB, and he made it extra special for me.  He planned a big elaborate trip to the Biltmore Estate in the mountains and everything was a surprise.  It was lots of fun.  My 28th birthday, he planned another surprise trip to Nashville, and we spent the whole weekend just listening to live music, day-drinking, and eating yummy southern food.  Good memories!  

Comfy Weekend

Have a fabulous week, friends!

Comfy Weekend

Comfy Weekend

Hunter socks

Activewear pants

Ugg australia
$250 -

$21 -

Thursday, March 14, 2013

GYB LinkUp

Today I did some retail therapy damage, and got some good stuff for the whole family! Here are just a couple things I picked up for myself.  I love Loft, because I can still fit into my pre-pregnancy size there.  Yes--size does matter to me.  ;-)

This picture doesn't do this dress justice.  It's Betty Draper-esque.  :-)

Mint Skinnies....I've had them on my mind for a while, and I love the color!  
And, of course I had to buy my little man a few outfits AND this adorable little fedora hat.  I love it.

Linking up with Julie from This Gal Cooks for the Grow Your Blog link party.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Mommy needs sleep...

I SO want to blog right now, but I am far too exhausted to think---let alone write anything that makes any sense.  Nighttime around these parts has been rough lately with LOTS of wake-ups.  Hoping for a quiet, restful night tonight.  So, I'll leave you with some pictures and hope that maybe tomorrow I can work up the energy to write one of the posts that I've been writing in my head for days now.  Nighty-night!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Today=Mom FAIL

Don't let this sweet face fool you.  This was on Tuesday---before he turned on me!

Today was a true test of my patience.  And I feel like I failed as a mom.  Miserably.  Yesterday, Max started being VERY fussy anytime I put him down.  And today, it was 100X worse.  When I was holding him or sitting with him, he was perfectly smiley and happy.  We would play and laugh together, and he was in a great mood.  If I took even two steps away from him, he started SCREAMING and crying.  It was SO sad.  Usually I can leave him for a few minutes to play on his playmat or in the exersaucer by himself while I throw in a load of laundry or make myself some breakfast.  Today that just wasn't happening.  I couldn't even go to the bathroom by myself.  (No, really.  I laid him on the floor of the bathroom while I peed.)

Since he was inconsolable, I tried getting him to nap in his crib this morning.  This is something he has been refusing to do, and I've been attempting it every day this week without success.  I figured that if he was miserable anyway, I might as well try again today.  He screamed for 20 minutes, and I couldn't take it anymore.  As soon as I picked him up, he fell right asleep in my arms.  I tried to put him back down, and he woke up, eyes wide open--screaming.  That was the end of it.  And then he was overtired, upset, and still hadn't taken a nap.

At one point today, I put him on the floor in the dining room (where he could still clearly see me in the kitchen) so that I could wash a few dishes.  He started crying hysterically.  So, what did I do?  I started doing the same--right there at the kitchen sink.  I had a meltdown right along with him.  And then I sat down with him and we finished our cry together.  And, I think he felt better.  But I did not.

At 5:00, he showed signs that he was tired, and this is typically when he takes his last nap of the day.  So, I brought him upstairs, rocked him, and put him in his crib when he was drowsy.  Eyes shot wide open and he let out a wail like I was torturing him.  At this point, I needed to step away.  I've been alone with him all day, and I just needed a five minute break.  I left him in the crib-screaming.  And I finally took a shower.  A shower I had been trying to take since 7:00 this morning.  I had the monitor in the bathroom so I could keep checking on him, and even the water from the shower couldn't drown out the wailing coming from the nursery.  But, at least my hair is now clean.

When I got out of the shower, I raced down to the kitchen in my towel, grabbed the first bottle of wine I pulled out of the wine fridge, and poured myself a big glass.  Then, I went back upstairs, pulled him out of the crib, calmed him down, and we cuddled together in bed with my glass of wine.  I followed with 2 more glasses.  And a big bowl of ice cream.

Now he is finally asleep for the night (I hope), and I REALLY hope that tomorrow is a better day.

I know that you can't "spoil" a baby.  He is very attached to me (which I am okay with), but I want  him to be a little independent too.  I've tried talking to him as I walk away and continued to talk to him from the next room, coming back to reassure him that I'm still there.....You name it--I've probably tried it.  We have lots of other baby friends his age, and most of them can be left for short periods of time to play on their own.  Their moms are able to clean their houses, make dinner, and do laundry.  I can't get anything done.  

How do I help him learn how to play on his own?  Have your babies shown this "separation anxiety" at this age?  

Ok, I'm off to finish my glass and head to bed.  Sweet dreams!  

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Crossing the Border with Breastmilk

As many of you loyal readers know, I'll be taking my first vacation sans baby with the hubs in the middle of April.  I've mentioned my anxiety over leaving Max for the first time in previous posts, and unfortunately as the time creeps closer, I'm not feeling any less anxious.  BUT, I am starting to get more excited about sun, sand, and cocktails on the beach.

One of the reasons for my anxiety is the whole matter of "feeding".  Max has been exclusively breastfed since he was born.  He does occasionally take a bottle with expressed breastmilk, and he has no problem taking a bottle. (thank goodness!)  So, I have been {FRANTICALLY} pumping milk every morning (usually at 4 am, because that is the only time I have time to do it) in order to have enough for him while we are away.  That's at least 160 ounces in case you were wondering.  (And for all of you BFing moms, you know that 160 ounces requires A LOT of pumping.  I can usually get an average of 4 ounces per pumping session.)  I think that I will be able to have enough milk stored up by the time I leave.  I have nothing against formula, but I really don't want to start giving it to him when he's done SO well with breastmilk (or while I'm away).  My worst fear is that I would come back and he would refuse to breastfeed again.  It would make me so sad.  Luckily, I have a best friend who has an abundant oversupply of breastmilk in her freezer, and she's offered me some as backup.  Is that a best friend, or what??  She is truly THE BEST.  :-)  So, he will be taken care of while we are gone for five days.

While we're in Mexico though, I want to continue to pump at the times when I would normally be feeding him so that I can keep my supply up.  So, here is my question for you.  I have been researching how to bring the milk back on the plane.  Nowadays, bringing liquids on a plane is an ordeal.  But, I am not about to just throw out my hard earned pumped milk!  (Obviously, some of it will have to be dumped if I consume one too many margaritas, but that is a whole different story...)  I've read the TSA procedures, and it appears that it shouldn't be a problem.  BUT I've also read the horror stories that some women have gone through trying to do this.  Help me put my mind at ease.  

Have you been away from your baby and had to pump while you were gone?  How did you bring the milk back??  Did the TSA give you a hard time?    What's the easiest method (cooler bag, ice, etc.)?

And just because I couldn't leave you without a few pictures of this cutie...

Doesn't everyone put their baby in a pot?

Playing the Piano (And no...We don't watch the Steve Harvey show.  It was SNL!)

Monday, March 4, 2013

Dinnertime Conversation

I know that dinnertime at your house sounds like this too, right??  LOVE him, and all of his chatter! He just wants to be a part of the conversation!  Happy Monday!

P.S.  I didn't make him cry at the end of the video.  He loves when I yell back at him.  Haha.