Thursday, March 13, 2014

9 Monther

About Graham at 9 months:

You haven't slept through the night more than maybe two times your whole little life.  We are up one or sometimes two times a night and the only thing that will put you back to sleep is a good old fashioned feeding.  Boobs are magic I guess.  Too bad your dad can't help out here.  I am really starting to crave a full nights sleep.  Really bad.
You get really excited about your sister and brother.  They can always put a smile on your face by jumping up and down or coming and sneaking up on you. 

We are finally getting outside again and you are a good stroller buddy, way better than you were 7 months ago.  You hated that thing. 

Baby food and you sometimes go together...You'd rather eat something substantial and chunky I am finding.  Lasagna, you slay it.

You've just started to army crawl this week.  You usually get pretty mad if you are left trying to crawl for too long.  So I always pick you up and you revert to being happy again.

Being a mom to you has been challenging but so rewarding.  You always do a really good job of making me remember that I am needed for you to get through the days.  If you are happy then I am usually happy.  There will be a day when you don't need me to help you anymore and I hope I can always remember how adored I was in your little eyes.  You are a little sweetheart Grahambo.   




Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Over and Over Again

Call it what you will, a season in life, a lull in action, the winter doldrums, life is seeming very routine these days.  I can pretty much pinpoint to the day what each month brings.  January is funky with sickness, recovering from the holidays and doing sales tax for Owl People, February brings Love On the Run (an event I help with) and getting overhyped by Valentines Day, making kids valentines, Erin and our valentines yadayada, March is deciding on Farmers Market dates, preparing our tax returns, sending Papa some balloons up for a birthday wish, April brings a visit to Kansas City every year to visit family, busting out some inventory for Farmers Market, planning for Henry's end of school party in May.  May is an explosion of things, Farmers Market, end of school party, birthdays, birthdays and birthdays....I could go on about what I can expect in every month until December.  

I guess it is good to have a routine, to have a plan for how your year is going to go but I am none too excited for the months ahead.  It is daunting to think of. At what point in time did these fun things become work?  How do you deviate from making them seem like work to being fun again?  Was that what happened when Graham came along?   Exhaustion from all things?  I can't continue to blame everything on three kids anymore.  I need to stop myself when people ask me how it's going with three kids.  I usually say "don't do it" to the person with two kids or "it's crazy" to those who have three.  I was at a class the other weekend and someone said to me "you have quite a few kids"  I said, "well, when you put it that way it sounds like I have 7 but I really only have three."  I feel like I have 7!

I think sometimes if I am living this life well or just surviving in it?  I am hopeful for the future that things won't seem like such a drain, that my children will stop bickering, that I can hire a babysitter for ALL three kids for one night, that things can get just a little more jazzy around here?  Like a nice vacation, beers in the backyard, KIDS playing OUTSIDE.  Yes, those would all help.   

In sum, I know that I should not be complaining, there are far worse things to throw in this routine of being routine such as sickness, accidents, being broke, losing my hands or something far worse.  I am grateful every day for the health and safety of my family and the blessings that we have been given.   I just maybe need to be doing a better job of acknowledging those blessings more often and appreciate "THE ROUTINE"

And because no post is complete without pictures...

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Problem Child

Disclaimer: Graham, I love you so very much and wouldn't trade you for anything in the world.  You are who you are and I love you for that.

Graham...He's been a cause for worry since exactly last year at this time, it was in womb but still, it was distressing.  We weathered through that and had a very good rest of the pregnancy.  Great birth experience, HEALTHY BABY, and 1 month later Graham started giving us a fit.  Colic, whatever you want to call it, stress, we were stressed.  He got kicked out of one daycare and moved onto what we thought was a much better place for him.  Well, a week ago, he more or less got booted from that daycare!

I feel bad for the little guy.  I have had no other option than to console him constantly.  Colic baby got some serious spoiling and he doesn't want anyone but his mama!  I can't help it to love on him and he loves on me.  We hired him a nanny that started today and guess what, he gave her a fit.  She is coming back and I am grateful for that!  I just think he needs some time to get used to her.  He's had a crappy experience with babysitters and just loves his mama.  Even if I think I just complain about Graham all the time...I really do love him and find joy and excitement in the things he does do good.

He is almost 8 months old for crying out loud!  I don't even feel like I have had a little baby.  I feel like I got swindled out of the cuddly baby and got a crazy screaming hyena sometimes but a very cute one at that.  He has two teeth, working on some more, has the stink face down that Julia used to make, is starting to get on his haunches to crawl pretty soon.  He sort of likes baby food, mommy's milk is the best and gets super excited when you turn his mobile on in his crib.

In our other part of the world...Henry is now a Tiger Cub in Boy Scouts.  Erin got stuck being the den leader, so they head off to meetings once a week or so.  Henry had his derby car race the other weekend and won Best In Show for his car.  I think there were 20 other cars and they picked his as best looking!  Good boy.  His wasn't the fastest but it was fun experiencing Erin and Henry working together and really building something nice and quality.  They took the time and Erin made Henry understand that you have to be patient in your steps of building to get a nice car.  Henry continues to rock it in 1st grade.  He gets really good grades and his teacher always says what a good leader and listener he is. 

Until next post where I swear that I won't complain about Graham.  Poor baby.          

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Resolutions and January

Maybe since it is documented it is easier to hold yourself to it.  Maybe, maybe not.  I have never been one to make resolutions because I feel like if you want to change something or be better at something, just do it already!  No need to wait until a new year to make something happen for yourself.  I feel though that this year is going to be big for us, I feel like the cold air I breathe in outside right now is powering me up for a fresh start. 

Here is what I want to happen this year:

New House:  We are pushing the limits in 5501.  It has been a great house, love it so much still.  So many great memories of bringing babies home, my Dad helping Erin install a window, mom helping me paint, kids playing in the back yard, Erin and I rotating rooms every year just so the kids have the best fit...I still love the layout, the openness and that it fits my style very much.  What I don't love is that we are getting a little too cramped, in the living room, around the kitchen table, just the overall feeling that our walls are on top of us.  I do know that whenever we do get this new house, the kids will still crawl all over me and be on my heels but maybe I won't feel so claustrophobic in a bigger space.  

10 Year: Erin and I will be celebrating our 10th anniversary this October.  We have had a pretty laid back and chilled out marriage.  Which to me is cause for a serious celebration!  Not too many people make it past 10 years and some just bicker non-stop.  So party it is!  I want to whip out that wedding dress, gather our friends and family who like a good polka and beer party and get down with our bad selves!  I already have a hardcore polka band booked, a potentially great location and now I just need the friends and some beer to get on with it in October!  

Owl People:  I don't really post much about Owl People on my blog.  I have tried to keep it as family stuff on here and many probably don't know how much time I put into my little side sewing gig.  I want to really try some different things this year, work on new products and keep fresh all year long. 

Retreat:  I have hosted my little craft retreat, Get The Craft Out for 5 years now.  I feel like I am at a good place with it and have figured out my numbers and what works.  The girls that come all have a really good time.  I would love to grow this to be something more and somehow incorporate other types of businesses/artisans into a larger scale retreat/learning party.  I see so many cool retreats popping up all over the states and I really want to bring it for Lincoln.  Confidence, connections, graciousness are all things that I need to embrace if I want to do it.  Oh, and I probably need to enlist someone to help me do this.  I have learned that I can't do it all by myself, especially if you want to make things great. 

Blogging:  I have been bad since I have joined Instagram.  I blame it all on Instagram.  Instead of documenting by writing, I just have been documenting our lives with pictures and a snippet to describe my photo.  I have considered doing a photo dump a week or at least making it a weekly task to blog.  I don't do this thing much for anyone to read it (sorry) but I do do it for my family and I do it for myself.  Blogging challenges anyone?  I like to write, I like my pictures, I just run stale after a while.  I got this blog overhauled last year with a beauty of a header and layout and I need to make it work.  

Photobooks/Babybooks/Blogbooks-What to do with it all:  I am sure everyone else is victim to loads of photos on their computer with nothing to do with them.  I read somewhere that someone picks the best 100 pictures of the year and loads them into a photobook.  I liked that.  100 is doable.  I only have 7 years worth of 100 pictures to do.  Baby books.  Gosh, I suck.  Poor kids, they all have them.  I am going to be making shit up for Henry's because I can't remember that far back.  Poor kid.  JUST GOTTA DO IT.  Blogbook.  I have tried oh so many times to slurp this thing into blurb to print this blog once and for all.  I hate it, it takes forever, FOREVER.  I am going on 7 years with this thing.  That is a lot of entries.  I need to break it up, utilize my boring ass job and get it done.  I need technology to get a little better in this category.  I feel like Blurb is the best way to do it but it gets so overloaded and takes FOREVER.  Someone surely has to develop something that moves at a faster rate.  

#30bags30days:  I did this last year with the inspiration coming from Becky Novacek.  I think it should be dubbed 30 Places in Your House That Drive You Nuts.  The premise is to make a list of places in your house that are cluttered with stuff, stuff you don't use anymore and gather it to donate, trash, recycle or sell.  Break it down one spot, one day at a time.  I got way more than 30 bags last year and it felt really good to go through the junk drawer, the utensil drawer, the linen closet, THE TOY BOX and so much more.  

Be a better friend:  Jeez, I am thinking that I am getting a little carried away on resolutions here, but this is an important thing.  Do you have those friends that are always really really good at asking about you, how you have been and rattles your kids names off wondering how they are doing and remembering specific things about you that you wonder how in the world they remembered that about you?  Well, I can think of a few.   Those are the people that I want to do a better job investing my time with.  Being more conscience of those who do give more of an effort.  

Okay, jeez, I have to stop.  I could probably go on and on as there is always something that I want to improve on, attain or succeed with.  I am still waiting on my January wall calendar (it should be in the mail) to truly begin my plunge into 2014 and feel like it has begun.  So until then, none of this is going to get done.  Procrastination?  Nawh....

Monday, December 16, 2013

Baby Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit: A Review

If you are a mother to a baby, you will do WHATEVER it takes to get your baby to sleep better.  Whether it be to keep your baby sleeping for a straight hour or through the whole night.  That often involves buying products that you are desperate to help you with it.  With three kids we have tried everything:  Woombies, Swaddleme's, Halo Sleep Sacks, the good ol fashioned baby burrito, and this go round, Baby Merlin's Magic Sleep Suit.  A friend clued me in on this when she said that this is what got her 1.5 month old sleeping through the night. 
Graham has always been a little bit of a challenge with his colic issues and his sleep issues have been about the same.  The first 4 months of his life were spent screaming and when he wasn't screaming he was taking little snoozers for about 45 minutes to an hour max.  He loved the old fashioned swaddle but was starting to grow out of it, getting his hands up to his mouth and waking himself up. 

We got our first Sleepsuit on Ebay and it took Graham about a week of using it and he started to sleep through the night.  Hallelujah!  Well, something happened and the magic wore off or maybe he just missed his mama but he has since started waking once during the night and that is to see me and eat and quickly go back to sleep!  Nonetheless, his naps have been better, and his night sleeping is dramatically better from where we were during colic days. 

Here are the things I love about the Sleepsuit:
1) It provides him really really restful sleep
2) It prohibits him from squirming and making himself mad by eliminating the need to get his hands out of the traditional swaddle
3) It provides security to him
4) I can put him in his crib awake and he goes to sleep without being rocked or nursed to sleep
5) It is so CUTE
6) I can re-sell it at practically the same price at what it cost me.  The re-sale on these are really good.  There is always a mother looking for a product to help her child sleep better.  This is just so unique that anyone will give it a shot!

Here are the things I wish I could improve for the Sleepsuit:
1) A glove option-he still can get his hands to his mouth and we have to put socks over his hands because he would suck on his fingers all night, especially while teething.  Plus his hands get really cold.
2) The product has been designed in America and is designed and owned by a woman in Pennsylvania, who is really nice by the way, BUT...I wish production could be shifted to America instead of made in China.  The quality is really great but I would love to see this made by mothers for mothers in America.  This doesn't affect the product by any means but it would make me smile to see a tag, Made in America.

We are 6 months into Graham's little life and I don't know what I would do without my Sleepsuit.  Heck!  I don't know what we will do when he outgrows it!  So, if you are looking for a sleep miracle or anything that will provide you relief when you are dragging, I would definitely recommend this product! Go!  Buy one here!

*A Sleepsuit was provided to us for this review though none of my review is biased upon the gift.  These are my true thoughts :)* 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Breathing it in.

The days of fall are winding down.  Time outside will be shorter and we will start to hole up doing things inside like playing more games, coloring and trying to get creative while not getting on each other's nerves.  Today we drank in the weather.  Enjoying some creek hopping and leaf crunching.  I love these days with my kids.  

Friday, November 15, 2013

Belly Laugher.