Friday, December 30, 2016

Random Life Update

There is a ton going on lately and I haven't had time to write about it all so I'm going to smash it all into this one post.  If you last to the end then you really deserve a tin of cookies! Or maybe a bottle of wine.


Postpartum is not fun for anyone.  Not only am I dealing with new body issues and clothes not fitting how they used to despite being the same exact weight I was when I last wore them, but now my hormones have gone a bit wonky.  Right around this time with my oldest my hair started to thin.  Well I thought it was bad then and boy was a wrong!  This time it is about twice as bad.  Thankfully, it all came back last time and I hope (and pray) it all comes back this time.  Until then give me all the voluminous hair products!  

"How is breastfeeding/nursing going?" is the most common question I get asked both on here and from those around me.  Two weeks ago I would have to told you it was going very well.  Then my hormones went nuts ( see the bit on my hair ) and my supply tanked almost overnight.  Before EV's doctors appointment I knew there was something up as she was nursing way ore than normal.  Then at her appointment we find out she didn't grow as much as was expected and the doctor suggested we supplement with either pumped milk or formula.  I just started using my freezer supply with the very next feeding.  I let her nurse from both sides and then offered her a bottle.  She drank the whole 4 oz.  Thus I started doing just about every trick I know within reason to get my supply back up.  Just as my supply starts to come back she goes on a nursing strike.  Awesome.  My supply was then all over the place.  One day my boobs think they are feeding the whole town and the next I can barely pump 2 oz from both sides.  I decided that I'm done trying to keep my supply afloat.  That whole process is a lot easier when you aren't pumping much at all.  In fact I am almost all dried up.  *Please do not send me any advice/opinions on whether or not I should have stopped (it will happen) or how I could have kept it going.  I am happy with my decisions regardless of what anyone else thinks.  

Bear is in Speech Therapy now.  He has been going for about month and I am happy to report an explosion in his verbal skills.  He is saying more words, signing more, and even attempting/mimicking words.  The sudden click seemed to happen just as we had him evaluated, so whether the timing just worked out or Speech is actually helping I'm not sure.  He doesn't seem to say much for her, but he says a ton for me.  Regardless, it doesn't hurt to keep him in it as long as the insurance keeps paying for it.

Duke, my pretty boy, seems to be back having seizures again.  I don't know what the triggers are that cause them.  I just know that they thankfully have been pretty mild.  He is getting over them quicker than before since they are small.  However, I am still reluctant to put him on medication.  It would mean a life long thing once he goes on them.  I don't know that a few seizures in a year justify us putting him on medication for life.   Especially when he could never come off them or they would get worse.  I don't like it, but for now we will wait and observe.  If they become more frequent then we will reevaluate.  

We have decided that we are done having kids.  Hubby is even looking into a vasectomy.  Frankly, we have a boy and a girl.  It seems like a logical stopping point all things considered.  It took A LOT to not only get pregnant, but to stay pregnant.  Those last few months of each pregnancy were some of the worst times of my life and I don't want to put myself through that again.  If our family grows anymore it will not be from a child that I birth.

Waiting for a list to decide your fate is not fun.  It's very very stressful in fact.  Hubby is waiting on the Major list to come out. It will decide if he stays in and does a fully 20 years or not.  The plan has always been for him to go until retirement, but that choice is out of our hands.  Both of us are very much torn about what we hope comes of this.  On one hand if he gets out we can settle down and take root.  Maybe buy a home and invest in it.  On the other hand, we can just as easily keep doing what we have been.  It has been working out well for us so far.  I think the hard part or the stressful aspect for me, is the unknown.  Hubby getting out and the transition to civilian life.  While I know we would be just fine, I still worry.  It would mean a huge change and one we can't really plan for until after we know.  Thankfully, we will know soon.

If hubby does end up getting out then one of us needs a job.  Just in case I have updated my resume and filled out a bunch of applications for teaching positions.  Like I said one of us needs a job regardless of who that may be.  I will admit that the idea of getting back into a classroom is both exciting and terrifying.  One I know I can handle, but things have changed quite a bit since I last had a classroom.

That said we are attempting to go through the house and really toss or sell what we don't want or need.  The deeper we get into this the more I feel like we belong on an episode of hoarders.  Not the shows where they have dozens of pets or save garbage.  Just the ones where they have more things then they know what to do with.  Really it has more to do with the lack of proper storage in this house and our parent handing us all our old crap.  Then there is us tossing it into the storage room waiting for magic elves to come sort through it.  They have yet to show up so this half day schedule will be productive I hope.  As a side note... Getting out would me would be able to toss a bunch of stuff.  The boxes for expensive things like TV's that we hold onto for each move or the items that don't work here but might in the next house.  Oh how I am itching to just toss everything!  Yay for decluttering! 

Evie was baptized earlier this month.  We took a trip to Virginia and got it done at the same church, by the same priest that baptized Bear.  I'm hoping to write more about it or at least share some photos.  Until then here is a sneak peek I guess.  

We also took a trip to New York for Faux Christmas.  Again something I hope get around to writing about.  Most of my family made it over to my Dad's house despite the storm.  We had a great time especially sleigh riding with Bear! 

This works for now because the toddler got a little too quite.  

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Christmas Recap

  Lets make this quick since many people have already packed up their Christmas decor already.

Santa arrived at our house and neatly laid out all the gifts under and around the tree.
 I didn't want to wake up to find all the gifts unwrapped and Bear asleep In the middle of the pile.  Hence, the gate outside the door. 

Stockings were also filled then picked up off the floor because 2 of them were too heavy for the hooks. Any ideas on what we can weigh them down with?  The deer work, but they aren't that heavy.


Bear slept in so we got EV up and fed before waking him up at almost 7:30am.  In the mean time, I snapped pics of the pups in front of the tree.

Bear woke up pretty grumpy then got all excited after seeing the tree.  He bee lined to the exersaucer and started playing with it.  I insisted on a photo of the kids.  This is the best we got and I'll take it.  The rest Bear looks disgusted that we had asked such a terrible task be done when presents were waiting to be opened.  

We started with the stockings.  They can be done whenever he wants.  For now it's an easy place to start and keep him occupied while we get our act together in the morning. 

I am apparently a mean parent and make him eat breakfast before opening the gifts under the tree. I doubt he would have cared about them if it weren't for the first gift being a truck.  

Once he realized that they were gifts for him that he liked he was over the moon.  Yet still patient enough for us to help him take some of the gifts out of the packaging.

To help I kept my toolbox set near by along with my knife.  Though I think more companies should use the turn knobs like the ones below!

We didn't forget about the pulse. They each got a  huge dog bone treat that they spent about an hour working on.

Nap time went well with both kids down at the same time. We hung outside and smoked a turkey for dinner while drinking a few beers.

Bear woke up ready to open more gifts and well EV woke up like this....

She cheered up after some snuggles and time in her exersaucer.  This little girl loves to stand!

Bear even helped clean up while EV went down for another nap.

The rest of the day was spent playing, listening to music, and eating delicious food.

Here is a quick photo recap of some of what we got...










Overall a great day!  I look forward to next year when EV can actually participate in opening her gifts and eating the yummy foods! Christmas is done so Cheers to the new year!  

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Dear EV (Dec 2016 - Five Months Old)

Dear EV,

Another month with my sweet baby girl.  Where to start, because it feels like so much has happened.  Let's jump in with how you have grown!  I spent the end of November and early December switching out your wardrobe and getting you used to formula.  I am so very thankful that both tasks seemed relatively easy.  Almost too easy.  All the clothes started out feeling massive on you, especially the 6 mo sleepers.  However, lately they don't feel as huge as before.  I'm not ready to dive into the emotions that come with packing up the clothes you have outgrown just yet.  That said, you have more than just physically grown this month.

You have gotten better at sitting up on your own and really engaging your core muscles to hold you up.  When you get really excited you forget everything altogether and flop to the side or backwards.  The time you spend on your belly has been clearly beneficial as you are pushing up on your elbows and even your hands.  You also attempt to army crawl but aren't very successful.  To get around you roll and turn yourself by kicking.  

OK onto your current stats:

Weight:  14 lbs 4 oz (birth weight: 6 lbs)

Length:   25.25 inches (birth length: 19 in)

Diaper size: I feel like I need to maybe move you up here to a size 2, but you aren't quite there yet.  They are a bit to big and I think I would get lots of leaks.  I have however been using the small cloth diapers with you.  They are a great fit and makes it easy for diapering you.  I still do them part time.  Whenever we are out I put you in disposables.  

Clothing size:  3-6 mo and 6 mo clothing is what you are currently in.  Like I mentioned above 6 mo sleepers seemed massive at first, but not so much lately.  You keep growing and the more clothes I pack away the more I wish you would slow down!

Feedings/eating:  Oh boy a lot has changed in this area.  You are no longer just receiving pumped milk.  Long story short my supply tanked and you went on a nursing strike of sorts.  I pump what I can and you get that first and if you need more than that you get formula.  Thankfully you haven't been too picky when it comes to bottles or even formula for that matter.  You just seem happy to be full.  

Likes:  Much like your brother you seem to like animals.  Most kids do.  You LOVE your fox stroller toy and the smaller ones that rattle.  The new exersaucer seems to be a big hit for you as well as long as we stabilize the bottom so it doesn't wobble around.  I think its just a lot of different movements for you at this age.  

Dislikes:  You have some pretty standard dislikes for your age.  Being put down without anything to keep your attention for a long time.  

Funny/Cute moments:  Finally a month where a stand out moment with you didn't involve poop!  It only took 5 months lol. While at your brothers Speech Therapy appointment you were pretty content in your car seat, but were babbling away.  You were trying to repeat any noise you heard from anyone.  Your brother races out into the waiting room runs over to you and says "you cute" making all the women in the room and you smile.  His teacher tells me that that was the first thing she has heard him say the whole time.  To which you babble away just like you have been.  She bends down and starts talking to you saying she likes your outfit and you puke all over it then giggle.  So no poop but lots and lots of puke.  I swear girl your brother hasn't had this many standout moments involving gross things. 

Doctors Appointments:  No real check up this month for, but the doctor wanted you in for a growth check.  Meaning you get weighed and measured to make sure you stayed on trend with where you were supposed to be.  

Baptism:  This month we had you baptized at the same church, by the same priest as your brother. You were extremely well behaved and even slept the last bit of the service.  After we went back to your grandparents house for brunch and cake.

 Christmas:  This was a low key year.  We stayed at home just the family.  You seemed to enjoy your new toys and watching your brother open and play with his toys.  

Looking Forward:  I am looking forward to the day that I walk into your room and see you standing there holding onto the side with that big grin you always greet me with every morning.  



Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Thanksgiving Egg Rolls

There is always leftover with our thanksgiving Take 2 meal (AKA Christmas Dinner) and I decided to find something else other than the standard turkey tetrazzini or similar dishes.  After a bit of searching I found Thanksgiving Egg rolls and just made it fit for what we had.  The for egg roll wrappers were not easy to find.  It turns out that they were at the commissary and we just didn't know it.  They are super easy and not greasy like you would suspect. 

I placed sweet potato casserole, turkey, green beans, and a bit of stuffing at an angle on the egg roll wrapper.

Wet the sides and roll.

When oil is hot put in egg rolls

Cook until golden brown

Hubby reduced the cranberry sauce to use with these.  It was perfect.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas


During this holiday please remember those who can not be with their loved ones.  
Thank you to those who serve.  Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 23, 2016

Christmas Eve Box 2016

For the past couple of years we have been doing a Christmas Eve box.  There are a few pretty standard things that we put in there every year like new pajamas for the kids and a Christmas movie.  This year we also put in Christmas themed books (repeat they haven't seen/remember), hot chocolate for (almost) everyone, and popcorn seasonings.  A lot of these are repeats or re-buys from previous years.  Since the kids are so little they don't know the difference.  The older they get thought the less I will be able to do this.  I'll keep the Christmas spending down while I still can.  

Once the kids have on their new pajamas, we will enjoy some treats while watching our new Christmas themed movie.  Then once Bear is tucked into bed we will read the "new" books from the box.  It's been a nice treat for Bear and now Eve to enjoy.  After all, Santa is coming. 

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Life lessons in the making...

Lesson Learned: No fast movements near a kitten

Lesson Learned: Hold on!

Lesson Learned: Don't sit on the arm of a couch.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Holiday Menu +

This upcoming weekend is of course Christmas.  We will do snack plate dinner for Christmas Eve and then a turkey with all the fixings on Christmas Day.  We dub it Thanksgiving Take 2.  Aside from the holiday the meals require little effort as I am baking cookies this week for family, neighbors and friends.

Barbie Hair Fixes Part 1

Let's jump right on into it.   Every doll hair fix tutorial I could find started with brushing out the dolls hair.  It may look worse...