Sunday, February 23, 2014

Six Months.

Height & Weight: You weigh 18 pounds and 4 ounces and you're 27 inches long.  Good gracious, where did my tiny baby go??  

Health: You've been in tip top shape except for two short-lived colds.

Sleep:  You have gotten SO much better! I think the turning point was around five months.  You sometimes have trouble going down at night, but we have a routine and it seems to help.  You have bathtime, look in the mirror and have snuggles with daddy, then you eat and snuggle with me.  I usually lay you down awake and you fall asleep, but sometimes you fall asleep nursing.  I feed you again at 10pm before I go to sleep, but you are generally very drowsy. Most nights you sleep until sometime between 3:30-5:30 (You did make it to 6:40am once!) If you wake up before 4am daddy or I give you your paci and you fall back to sleep.  Your naps had gotten better as well.  Some days are better than others.  I lay you onto your tummy, you snuggle up with my scarf and your paci and most of the time fall asleep.  The past week has been awful and we've had lots of power struggles at nap and at bedtime, but I think it had to do with all the milestones you hit this week.  Bedtime has been close to normal the past three nights, but naptimes are still terrible.  I hope soon  you decide again that little naps are good for both of us.

Diet:  Milk is your favorite, but you've tried carrots, apples, sweet potatoes, peaches, pears and oatmeal.  Tomorrow we're going to try peas :) 

Clothes:  You are a chunker.  You can't even fit into anything six month size, haven't fit into them since 5 months.  You are wearing 9mo-12mo.  Pants are just plain  hard because of your fluffy cloth diaper butt.   

Baby Gear Love:  Your jumper is a favorite!  Recently we bought a high chair and you love it! I think it makes you feel like a big boy.  You love frozen teething toys and anything else that can fit in your mouth.  You have started to like toys that make noise and light up.  You spend lots of your time on the floor with mommy and daddy rolling around and playing toys or looking at books. 

Likes:  You still love bath time, singing silly songs with daddy, tasting different foods, looking at colorful books, video-chatting with aunties or Grandma and Grandpa, petting Comet, going for walks with mommy and being naked.

Dislikes:  When you're tired, but won't sleep, naptime, not being able to figure out a new skill. 

Social:  You enjoy other people, but you're starting to voice your opinion about wanting mommy and/or daddy.  You love your grandparents and aunties and uncles.  I love watching you play with your little friends.  The level of interaction is so wonderful.           

Milestones: The last week was incredible!  On Monday you started lifting your body off the ground on your hands and toes (plank) for less than a second.  Apparently you decided to skip your knees all together for right now.  Tuesday you were holding yourself up for seconds at a time.  Wednesday you were getting into your plank and scooting backwards and sitting up for a few seconds or longer when I'd place you in that position.  Thursday and Friday you were a moving machine scooting yourself across the floor.  Saturday you just continued practicing and then today you rolled from one end of the room to the other and when you couldn't roll anymore you started scooting backwards.  I'm sure forward crawling won't be far off.  You are amazing.  

Nicknames:  Daddy's nickname for you is Boomer and Mommy's is Goober, Gooby, Scooby.
We love you so much sweet little Boo Boo Bear! I can't wait to keep watching you grow!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Our Start in Cloth Diapering

Cloth diapering can be for everyone, but it certainly doesn't have to be! I'm in it to save money, to reduce what chemicals come in contact with Kai's skin and because he's just so cute wearing his fluff. We have been cloth diapering for about 4.5 months. We are still not cloth diapering full time and I'm not sure if we ever will. He wears one disposable every night. I've tried cloth at night but he always wakes up soaked and that's no fun for anyone. I've been reading up and I could buy different inserts to try, but I don't really know if I want to invest anymore at this time, especially without the assurance it will work for him. I like this blog post talking about different types of cloth diapering mommas. At first I was definitely The Newbie, but have since graduated to The Minimalist, secretly wishing I could be The Stasher. I did so much research and talked to every friend that cloth diapers, but I still think it's trial and error.  My cousin absolutely LOVES her Fuzzibunz and they worked great for her two boys, but the BumGenius have worked much better for Kai.  I hope I end up cloth diapering all the kids we're blessed with, mostly because I want the money we invested to go as far as possible. I'm just going to give a quick list of what we've used and are currently using because I'll write more detailed posts in the coming weeks.  Details on everything is just too much for one post!

What We Have Used:
Lil' Joeys Rumperoos - We were lucky to borrow these from a friend!  They were the first dipe that fit the little guy. 
Fuzzibunz Small - Kai wore these until about two weeks ago.  They weren't my favorite because if I didn't get to changing him quick enough (or didn't notice) right after he peed or pooped we were in for wet/dirty clothing.
WAHM Infant Pockets and AI2s (found incredibly cheap on Craigslist and they were great!)

What We're Currently Using:
Fuzzibunz Medium
BumGenius 4.0s and Freetimes - Snaps -  LOVE both of these :)
Flip Covers and Stay Dry Inserts - Snaps and Aplix - This is an incredible offer on a limited budget. 

Some Randoms I Don't Regularly Reach For:
Gro-Via Shell - Use with disposible inserts.  I got it on Craigslist. I wish I had one of their inserts, but they're expensive in my book.   
Charlie Banana Shell (Never Used) - Craigslist. I have no idea why this didn't have an insert with it. That's probably part of the reason I never reach for it. 
Kawaii (Never Used) - Got for free from Kelly's Closet.  It's too big for Kai still.

Wet Bags: I love all my wetbags!
Kanga Care (large in Blue, loving their new Charlie print!)
Bumkins (small in Croc)
Charlie Banana (small in Construction)

Bumkins Flannel Wipes
Homemade Wipe Solution

Keep an eye out for the detailed posts coming soon!  Thanks for stopping by!  Feel free to leave a comment about what you love best in your stash or any questions you might have! 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

No-Bake Energy Bites

Yesterday I wanted to make something, anything really.  When I'm in that kind of mood I usually wander over to Pinterest to look what I've pinned to see if anything looks good.  I found two pins, Skinny Monkey Cookies and No-Bake Energy Bites.  I weighed the two, both looked equally tasty, but in the end I realized I didn't have applesauce, plus finding time to bake something with a 5 month old seemed like too much work.  No-Bake Energy Bites is it!  I went off the recipe from Smashed Peas and Carrots, but with my own twist.  I also doubled her recipe because as a nursing momma I eat all the time.  I didn't want to eat them all while making them and hoped for some leftovers.  Thankfully there are some left in the fridge for today's consumption :) 

Here's what I used:

2 Cups Oatmeal
1 Cup Peanut Butter*
2/3 Cup Honey **
1 Cup Flaxseed Meal/Ground Flaxseed
1 Cup Mini Chocolate Chips
2 Cups Crushed Honey Nut Cherrios and Graham Crackers***
2 tsp Vanilla

* I think any nut butter would work, especially if allergies are present.  There are many comments on the post from Smashed Peas and Carrots talking about different choices.  I actually used 1/4 Cup crunchy peanut butter and the rest creamy. That's what what I had on hand and it seemed to work just fine. 
** I used creamed honey from the Farmer's Market and it looked like it had cinnamon in it, but I'm not sure.  I think adding cinnamon and other spices would be great.  
*** I used these because I needed something to replace the coconut in the original recipe.  One I didn't have any coconut and two I don't like coconut.  My huband likes coconut so next time I would possibly split the ingredients in half and add coconut to half for him and maybe dried cranberries or raisins for me.  I would also like to try throwing some chia seeds in.  I love chia seeds :) 

There are so many different combinations that I could try I'm sure I'll be making these in the future!

After putting everything in a bowl I microwaved it for 30-45 seconds, which nicely melted the chocolate chips.  I like the texture better without crunchy chocolate chips.  I mixed it all together and rolled in into balls.  The mixture sat on the table for a little while in the middle so I could tend to Kai, but it didn't seem to matter.  I finished rolling them and put them in the fridge which made them harden.  (The original recipe says to cool and then roll.) They are so darn tasty!  Hopefully they'll last a few more days, but we'll see.  Enjoy!

For a photo check out my Instagram!  My username is emhammar. (My computer wouldn't upload for this post.)

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

This Kid.

Seriously how did I get so lucky?  I can't even begin to put into words the love I have for this little man.  I can't get enough of his rolls, his ticklish toes, his pouty lip when he's sad, his toothless grins (which I don't think will last much longer), his contagious giggles, when he sneaks smiles at his daddy or Comet, his love for bathtime, his snuggles or his love for reading books.  He's my little Goober.  I consider myself so blessed.  I promise to post a six month update around Feb 23!  Stay tuned!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Three Months.

Hey Little Goober,

Happy three months!  You are so amazing.  I can't believe you're mine sometimes.  You're so lucky to be surrounded by so much love from your grandparents and aunties and uncles.  You are so loved.  I can't give you enough kisses or hugs.  You smell so good.  I'm trying to take all of you in because I know how much you've changed in the past three months and I know it is just going to continue.  I love your chubby cheeks and round tummy and bald spot :) Thanks for all your beautiful smiles that I get during the day.  You're perfect.    

Height & Weight:  Two weeks ago you weighed 12 lbs 13 oz, so I'm sure you're above 13 lbs how.  I anticipate you will have doubled your birth weight by four months.  Way to go pal!  I'm not sure how tall you are but I can tell you're growing because your clothes are fitting better, even some getting too small.

Health: You had your first cold, lots of snot and sniffles.  Poor little guy!  You did get to sleep with us in our bed though :)  Thankfully it was short-lived and you were back to normal in no time.

Sleep:  Still nothing consistent.  Last week was awful and you were up again every two hours in the night.  Thankfully that was also only about a week long and it's gotten better this week.  You're naps are still short, but hopefully you get one good one during the day.  We start your bedtime routine sometime between 7-7:30.  We do bath time, pjs, snuggles with daddy and your last meal :)

Diet:  Milk is your favorite.

Clothes:  You are wearing anything between 3mo and 6mo.  I have to keep going through the bigger clothes to make sure we're not missing any that fit.  There was a 6-9mo onesie that you've already grown out of.  I have discovered that baby clothing sizes are a complete joke.  It's annoying, but I just have to make sure I stay on top of it for you.  You grew out of the homemade and newborn cloth diapers! 

Baby Gear Love:  Your gym is still a favorite.  It has toys hanging all over it.  You adore your Oball!  Your daddy and I are planning to get you another one for Christmas so one can go on your gym and one on your carseat.  When we were out running errands this weekend you napped while holding your Oball.  Our cloth diapers are still wonderful.  I've been using cloth wipes too (most of them I made) and the first no waste diaper change and that made me feel fabulous :)  He has started to like his Johnny Jump Up. 

Likes:  Taking Baths while singing songs with daddy, dancing and singing with mommy, putting anything and everything in your mouth and talking.

Dislikes:  When you can't get something close enough to put it in your mouth, when you get overtired, big noises (barking, sneezing)

Social:  You are so smiley and talkative.  We are loving it!  You have had lengthy conversations with your grandmas and grandpas too.  They were so excited about it!         

Milestones:  You are getting so sturdy, holding your head up and using your legs.  I also know now that you really know daddy's voice because when he comes home from work you look around for him.  You are starting to blow spit bubbles. 

Nicknames:  Daddy still calls you Boomer, but I've moved to Goober and every form of the word.  

Friday, October 25, 2013

Kai's Birth Story

I knew going into pregnancy that I'd want to document all of it with photos, blogs, notes, everything I could. I wrote down a lot of details about our pregnancy and I want to be able to tell Kai about his time in his baby palace if he wants to know about it. I kept this blog because I didn't want to forget anything. If we only have two kids (which is our plan currently) then I want to cherish every little thing! Kai is such a miracle and so was his birth.

It was Thursday, August 22, 2013 and I was at work playing with Miss B. It was my last planned day with her so I was really trying to enjoy it. I had some cramping the night before, but hadn't thought much of it because I didn't want to be disappointed again if it wasn't actual labor. At 2:15pm I had my first “contraction”. I would call the “contraction” a cramp, nothing more than menstrual cramps that didn't stop when I changed positions. They lasted a minute on average. For some reason I started keeping track of them but they weren't regular. I ended up having eight in the last two hours I was at work. Lindsay came home and I left, called John on my way home just to let him know what was going on. I didn't want to tell anyone else because I really wasn't sure I was in true labor. I got gas in the CRV on the way home, just in case :) Between the time I left work and the time John got home I only have a few “contractions”, but nothing regular or painful.

When John got home I told him everything that had been happening. We decided to treat the day like any other. I knew I didn't want to be sitting at home wondering if this was actually happening.  I wanted to relax as much as possible and enjoy the evening with John and Comet (possibly our last). We decided to go for a walk at Normandale, our two mile path. It was maybe too much, but my body was used to doing it during pregnancy, so I thought it would be fine. When we got there and I got out of the car I had my first real surge, more than a simple cramp. I leaned on the seat in our car and swayed.  After it was finished I remember just getting going on our walk. John was so calm through the whole process as it happened. We talked while we walked and I had six more contractions before we were done. With each one I leaned over and swayed.  I'm sure John will say this, but I was still not ready to acknowledge that I was in true labor. I remember telling John that it was so neat how my body was working. The “contraction” started, built, lasted for a little while and went away and I felt back to my normal self. It was so awesome to me. God made my body to go through labor. I loved it. On our way home we picked up some supper, I got Chipotle and John got Noodles. I had another one while we were on our way home, but they slowed when we got home and ate.

After we ate they returned very regularly, about every 10 minutes, lasting a minute each. We watched tv for an hour or two and I tried to relax. Around 9:30pm I took a bath and decided to get in bed to try and sleep. My contractions started to come every 6.5 minutes and still were lasting one minute. John called the hospital to say that we would be coming at some point. He also called both of our mommas to let them know what was up. I think John and I both anticipated being at home for a while. I knew that I wanted to labor at home as long as possible. John was so wonderful at this point and after he made his phone calls he packed up the can in preparation. I was snuggled up in my pregnancy pillow and poof my water broke at 10:40pm. I wasn't anticipating it happening at home because my mom's didn't with any of us. I heard a “pop” and it was a huge gush of water.  I won't ever forget it, so weird. Right after my water broke my contractions went from 6.5 minutes apart to averaging 4 minutes apart. Some were even closer and happening back to back. The intensity was crazy! They went from tolerable to incredibly intense.  At this point John took over as I couldn't really focus on anything but what was happening within me. He told me to get ready and get into the car. I got dressed and said goodbye to Comet. I was sad to leave Comet because he looked scared. He didn't know what was going on. Poor little guy!  With that we were on our way to the hospital!

John's driving amazed me at this point. He was so focused on getting us to the hospital. As we were driving he called the hospital to tell them we were coming and they tried to tell us they were on divert and we'd have to go to another hospital. He was very adamant, even a bit aggressive with whoever he was talking to. I was touched by how protective he was of me. He was getting me into Methodist. Turns out they had saved us a spot because we'd called earlier, but we were the last couple to be admitted that night.  We walked in and made our way to the elevator. I had a few contractions on the way which caused me to pause and bend over. We ended up in a crowded elevator which was so uncomfortable. I couldn't wait to get to the 3rd floor. They checked us into a triage room at about 11:45pm. I felt like we waited forever in that room. My contractions were so intense. I believe this was when I started to utilize my voice. I always thought it was a little funny when we made noise during yoga but I was a noisy lady during labor! After Kai was born a visitor told me that laboring women have a “song” they sing and that was exactly how John described it.

In the triage room we first saw a nurse.  She took my vitals and hooked me up to a baby monitor because we intended on having a water birth. They needed a continuous read of the baby for twenty minutes in order for us to deliver in the water. We then saw the midwife. I was excited to see a midwife I'd had for appointments. She checked my progress and boy did that hurt! I was entirely unaware how painful it would be. I remember that I started sobbing at that point. I was already 5cm and 100% effaced. I didn't know whether to feel good about that or scared that it might take me a lot longer to get to 10cm. I certainly didn't feel bad about it because I knew my body was doing something. After that we finally got moved to our room. I had two contractions on the way and I remember not even trying to be quiet in the hallway. Amy (our midwife) did such a great job putting pressure on my low back and hips and John whispered to me to tell me I could do it.

Once we made it to our room I got into the tub. It was too hot and it made me sweat. I couldn't find a way to hold myself in place when I had contractions. I felt like the tub was too big for me. I knew I couldn't utilize the tub, so I got out and moved to the bed. I labored on my side for a lot of this time period because it was easiest for me to relax in that position during breaks. I remember wanting to tell John and the midwife to be quiet because they were making small talk. The nurse continually moved the monitor that was placed on the baby and it was so uncomfortable. I wanted to tell her to quit because she always moved it during my break between contractions, so she was causing more pain than necessary I thought. As my contractions continued to increase in intensity I continued to “sing”. I remember being incredibly loud and John said he'll vouch for that :) There was a turning point that scared me sometime around 3am. (During labor I had no concept of time, but I'm pretty sure this is a close estimate after talking to John) The midwife had checked me a half hour earlier and I was already 9cm dilated. I remember that being encouraging! Not long after that check my “singing” turned into low moaning. The first time it happened I was shocked because my body did it instinctively. I honestly don't recall having any control over my tonal change. After Kai came John said at this point the nurse paged our midwife urgently telling her to come back asap.

Amy came back and checked me again and I was 9.5cm, so she pushed back my cervix so I could start pushing. This was at 3:30am, which I also found out later on. At this point I started to push. They were great about helping me switch positions to push, but moving for me was very difficult. My body was trying to conserve every bit of energy I had and I did my best to rest between contractions. The surges were coming very close together and sometimes they came right after each other. I pushed on my sides, my back, hands and knees and squatting. John said that almost right after I started pushing he could see Kai's head and all his dark hair :) I pushed and pushed and pushed and pushed and pushed. During this time I was completely within myself. I rarely answered anyone's questions and the only word I uttered regularly was, “Water,” so John would give me a drink. I was nauseous a lot of the time and thought I'd throw up, kept tasting my Chipotle (won't eat that next time!). At 6:30am (still pushing) I rolled over and looked out the window and it was light out. I said, “Holy shit, it's light outside!” Everyone laughed.  As I pushed I remember the nurse and Amy continually telling me that I was so close. I don't remember when but there seemed to be events happening that made me feel close, but Kai still didn't come. Amy put her delivery scrubs on, a cart with extra medical supplies was rolled in, a different nurse said she was going to sit at the end of the bed while Amy rushed out for sometime in case the baby came. I remember being so frustrated because I was pushing with all I had and didn't know how much I had left. At 7am the shift change happened and we got two new nurses and a whole load of new energy. They were so energetic and I really feel it was a great change for me! Each nurse took one leg to help me push, while John continued to be a rock for me up by my head telling me it was going to be okay. It only took forty more minutes to push him out after that. I got to pull him up onto my chest. Turns out he was sunny side up, the wrong way, which is why it took me so long to push him out. Poor little man came out with a bit of a conehead and a huge bruise from continually hitting my pelvic bone. John said the first thing I uttered was, “Little peanut, my sweet little man."  

He is my sweet, perfect, handsome, wonderful little man.

Two Months.

Dear Boo Boo Bear,

You are two months old!  Holy buckets!  I can't believe how big you've gotten and how much you've learned.  Keep growing big and strong and learning new things every day!  I love you so much!  I'm challenged by you every day and night, but this is by far the most rewarding experience of my life.  I look forward to many more days smiling and talking to each other, teaching you and snuggling you.  Just so you know I'd be thankful if you slept a little more at night :) 

Height & Weight:  At your 2-month appointment yesterday weighed 11 lbs 1 oz (20th%) and were 22 inches long (11th%).  The doctor said you're doing perfect :)

Health: You are a healthy, growing boy.  At your appointment you had to get two shots and an oral medicine.  It was so hard to see you cry, but you got through it like a champ!

Sleep:  Nothing consistant.  You are still pretty good at sleeping in your crib at night, but you are struggling to sleep there during the day.  Sometimes I let you nap in your swing so you at least sleep.  You've gotten better though, so I'm sure you're moving in the right direction. 

Diet:  You love milk.

Clothes:  You are wearing 0-3 month clothing.  I finally packed away all your newborn clothes.  It was sad to put them away, but you might have a baby brother or baby boy cousin someday, so they'll get more use.  You're 3 month clothing looks like the newborn clothing did on you when you were brand new, super big :)

Baby Gear Love:  You still love your play gym.  Recently you've starting loving being rolled around on mommy's exercise ball, helps you with tummy pains.  We've started using our other cloth diapers and I'm very happy with them.  We have some Fuzzibunz Perfect Size Small, some BumGenius 4.0, some Flip Covers and Inserts and a few from a WAHM.  You love looking at the Sheep Mobile that Grandma Sue made for you while you're hanging out in your crib.  We were able to borrow this swing from friends and Kai loves it!

Likes:  Taking Baths, Tummy Time, Kisses from Comet, Smiling at Mommy and Daddy and using your swing. 

Dislikes:  Napping in your crib and diaper changes at night.

Social:  You are cooing and smiling at us!  You rub your eyes just like your daddy when you're tired.          

Milestones:  Your neck is getting very strong and you can hold your head up for a little while when you're laying on your tummy.

Nicknames: Boomer and Boo Boo Bear have been the favorites recently.