Wednesday, August 28, 2013

11 Months!

Calvin is 11 Months old today!
I'm honestly in disbelief.
He's changed so much this last month, physically and developmentally.
He just cut his 5th tooth on Sunday. I seriously feel like this kid has been constantly teething for the last 5 months and I know we've got another whole year to go (at least)! Blah!
He's standing on his own (sometimes) although he hasn't been quite brave enough to take those first steps yet. I have a feeling he's not even going to walk, he's just going to take off at a full run and then I'm screwed.
I usually make Calvin's food but we just discovered that he LOVES sucking the food out of pouches. So I got some reusable ones to put homemade food in and I'm going to give those a try.

He also absolutely insists on feeding himself and he knows which books he likes and must
turn the pages when we read to him. He dances and sometimes sings along (in baby gibberish) when he likes a song, and he will let you know if he doesn't approve of the music in the car.
And if he's not being too busy (which is rare) he'll even give you kisses if you ask. Which means he'll lean into your face with his mouth wide open. It's pretty slobbery but just so damn cute.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A Day in the Life.

I thought I'd run you guys through what a typical day looks like for us.
Obviously the routine changes on the weekdays I work, but 5 days a week, this is pretty much it.

My alarm goes off but I usually dink around in bed checking facebook and Zulily on my phone while Tristan gets ready for work.
Once I wake up enough I put on my make up and throw my hair up... Usually while still in bed... I am not a morning person.

Tristan takes off for work and I start Calvin's bottle and breakfast and coffee for me.
Kiddo generally wakes up between 7:45 and 8:15.
I get him up, dipe changed and take him back to my room and feed him his 8oz bottle.
I love having a little time to just relax with him and the pup in bed.
He'll play around a little once he's done, we usually sing a couple songs and I give him my bottle of vitamins to use as a maraca.

This morning we're having kiwi, banana and a whole wheat pancake with applesauce smeared on it.
I made them a few days ago, and have just kept them in the fridge.

After he's done with breakfast and I've cleaned him up as best I can. I plop him down in the living room with Sesame Street on and he plays with his toys and Alfie and keeps an eye on the neighborhood for about an hour.
He doesn't pay much attention to the TV until Elmo comes on. Something about that furry red monster that Calvin just loves.
 He plays super well by himself and doesn't really want me to try and entertain him. When I do he just crawls away. I love having an independent kid that isn't hanging off me every second of the day.

Diaper change and put down for his morning nap.

This is when I get ready for the day, make phone calls and do the majority of my chores, laundry, blogging, and prepping lunch for the two of us.

Wake-up and Lunch time!
Today he's having avocado, blueberries and leftover chicken.
My kid is a carnivore thru and thru.
After his finger foods I give him a 6oz bottle.
He must be growing because he's been eating SO much lately.

After lunch we get out of the house.
Either for errands or going to the park or whatever.
I feel like getting out is good for both of us so I try to do it every day.

Nap time
I try to be home from whatever we're doing around 3-3:30 so I can put him down for a good nap. But sometimes he ends up sleeping in the car.
Lately I've been able to take him from sleeping in the car and put him straight in his crib to continue napping. Score!
No more driving around aimlessly or sitting in the parked car just so he'll stay asleep. Can I get an amen!?

Wake up, dipe change and 6oz bottle.
As you can see, he was not a super happy camper when he woke up.

Tristan comes home and plays with the kiddo while I start dinner.

(or whenever dinner's ready)
We all sit down to eat together.
Tonight's dinner is brined and grilled chicken with white bbq sauce, salad and watermelon. Yum!
We eat at the breakfast bar in the kitchen with Calvin in his highchair next to us. The floor under our dining room table is carpeted and for clean up purposes we prefer to keep him on the laminate.

After dinner we play more.

Bath, Brush, Book, Bottle, Bed.
Since Calvin is crawling and feeding himself he gets pretty disgusting so we bathe him every night.
After the bath, we brush his teeth (which he LOVES), and we lotion him up and get him ready for a good night's sleep.
We turn on the sound machine, close the curtains and I read him a book or 2 while Daddy gets his bottle ready. 
Tristan gives him his bottle in the rocking chair and puts him to bed every night.
Usually this is when I shower.

We're done!
Kiddo's asleep and Tristan and I clean up, hang-out and watch some tv until we decide we just can't keep our eyes open any longer.

Then we do it again the next day.
Thrilling isn't it?

Monday, August 12, 2013

Dani and Michael's Wedding!

What a weekend we had!
My step-sister Danielle is officially married.
She made such a beautiful bride and I couldn't be happier for her and her new husband.

Saturday was a beautiful (albeit hot) day.
I apologize for the lack of pictures.
I was not only a bridesmaid, but I did hair, makeup, set-up and wrangled my 10 month old in a tuxedo.
Needless to say, my hands were a bit busy.

The day started at 9am with hair for the bride and 6 bridesmaids.
My friend Becky came and helped get us all prettified.

We all stayed pretty busy but it all came together.

The ceremony started at 5pm and Danielle had both her parents walk her down the aisle which was very special.

As everyone on Instagram already knows, Calvin was the ring-bearer looked very dapper in his tux.

I wish, wish, wish I had gotten a pic of his whole body.
He had little black converse's on!
It was adorable.

For the reception I made him a special onesie.
For those who don't know the story, Calvin help Michael propose to Danielle on Christmas Day by wearing a special onesie. So this just seemed more than appropriate.

Once the love birds are back from their Hawaiian-Honeymoon and the Photographers pics are edited and done I will post more so you can all Ooh and Aww at the beautiful details.

Sunday we were all exhausted!
After sleeping in (Calvin slept until almost 9:00!) we headed downtown for a late breakfast at Madeline's, and a bit of shopping.

I found this Smile graphic one-piece at the Gap and couldn't have snatched it up fast enough!
(Gap is having 35% off your entire online purchase with the code "GAPTODAY" today so go quick and take advantage!)

We headed up to my in-laws for dinner and visiting. I have to hand it to him, my father-in-law grills the best steaks! It was a great way to end the weekend.

We definitely had fun, but I'm glad to get back into our regular routine. :)

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

First Year Favorites - Part 3: The Whole First Year

See Part 1:Newborn and Part 2: The Later Months

These are things that we have heavily relied on since Calvin's birth. Buy them, register for them, get them in your house.
You wont regret it.

Fisher Price Snugabunny Swing:(< free shipping!)
This thing is pure gold. It plugs in so there's no need for batteries (although batteries can be used), the mobile spins, it plays music or white noise and it can face 3 different directions. The bunny was the only color option available when Calvin was born, but they've been so popular Fisher Price has come out with a few different designs to fit your decor/theme.
 Admittedly we had become a little to dependent on this as kiddo had a hard time napping without it for a while.
Be warned, while totally awesome and amazing, this swing is ginormous. We have a small house and I was able to find a good spot for it in the living room, but it takes up a good amount of space.

Kiinde Kozii bottle warmer :
If anyone tells you you don't really need a bottle warmer, tell them they can shut the hell up because they're obviously not really your friend. We LOVE ours. We use it not only for bottles but for his food and frozen milk bags too. This one actually swirls warm water around the bottles so there's no hot spots and it's self contained so you're not wasting water. They're the perfect temperature EVERY time. Plus, it has a super wide opening so you can use it with any bottle or jar. No boiling, no steaming, you just need to put a little more water in it every now and then. I really, really can't recommend this one enough.

Como Tomo Bottles 5oz and 8oz:
Speaking of super wide bottles. When Calvin was born we knew that I was going to have to go back to work first (more on that later) so we also knew this kid HAD to take a bottle. After researching and comparing like a cracked-out mad-woman, I bought these. They are so super close to a natural breast, the wide opening makes them easy to fill and clean and they're made from silicon so they're well insulated and easy to grip and there's no worrying about bpa's. He got his first bottle (out of pure desperation) at 3 weeks old and has been happy with either bottle feeding or nursing ever since. I have 4 of each size and have never needed more.
Boon Lawn Drying Rack: Essential. The cutest drying rack around. When I bought mine I was not aware that there was a difference between the "grass" and the "lawn" models. Do yourself a favor and get the "lawn" as it is bigger.
I hate not bring able to see my baby in the car. Especially when they're brand new and you're so paranoid they're just going to stop breathing at any moment. And with kids having to stay rear-facing until they're practically teenagers it's nice to be able to glace in your rear view mirror and see what they're up to. These mirrors are cheap and you can get them in just about every store with a baby section. Snag one and save yourself some anxiety.

Nose Frida Snotsucker Nasal Aspirator and Filters:
 I got this as a baby shower gift from my cousin "in the know." This is The Best "snot-sucker" out there. You actually suck the boogs out of your kids nose with the power of your lungs. So much better than the stupid bulb syringe that barely works and is a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. The Frida comes apart for cleaning and has disposable filters that keep any germs or mucus from getting to you.
Sounds gross, I know, but parenthood is gross so get used to it.

Graco Sweet Slumber Sound Machine
I think one of the biggest mistakes new parents make is teaching their baby to sleep in complete silence. So they end up tiptoeing around their own home, terrified they're going to wake the baby. And naps and sleep anywhere other than home are impossible.
Think about it. When is anywhere completely silent?
I mentioned this already in Calvin's Room Tour, but we LOVE this thing.
It has 12 different sounds, an MP3 jack, a sleep timer, can run on batteries if needed and has a night light!
Calvin starts yawning as soon as we turn it on.
It really helps drown out all the random background noises that could possibly wake him up at night (ie: neighborhood dogs, cars, random people yelling, etc.). It has come with us on every trip we've taken with him and makes him feel like he's at home.

The Baby Sleep Solution and the Total Baby iPhone App.
Calvin started sleeping through the night at 12 weeks old. I credit these two things with making that happen.
I read 5 different sleep training books and totally felt like Goldilocks. "This one's too strict, this one's too leanient, this one's ridiculous..." etc. Until I found Suzy Giordano's book.
She recommends a gradual process that's more about getting them into a really good eating routine then sleeping naturally comes with it. I know all babies and situations are different but it totally worked for us and Calvin's routine has made our lives so much easier.

The Total Baby app was awesome to use because I could easily track when and what he ate and even which breast I was on and how long he fed. We also kept track of when he slept and for a while when we changed his diaper and what was in them. There's also a place to enter in their growth, Dr's appts., vaccines and milestones. When you're sleep deprived you really can't remember anything, I can't tell you how many times Tristan and I had this conversation:
"When did he last eat/poop/sleep?"
"I dunno, let me check my phone."
Total Sanity Saver!

 Petunia Pickle Bottom Boxy Backpack
OK. This diaper bag is a little frou-frou, however, the number 1 reason I love it so much is the fold out changing pad attached to the front. It is so convenient to just put down the bag, unzip the pad revealing the pockets specifically for diapers, wipes and cream and just plop him on it. It even makes changes on those scary public bathroom changing tables bearable. The pad also is removable for washing.
This bag comes in a bajillion different colors and designs and if you keep your eyes open you can find one for a really good deal. Be sure to register your email address with Every once in a while they have a temporary outlet store where you can pick up some of their discontinued and leftover products for a significant discount.

Medela Pump in Style Breast Pump :
I touched on this in my post about breast feeding here, but I feel it bears repeating. I have been pumping since kiddo was a few days old. As my almost constant companion i highly recommend this pump. Don't scrimp on your pump! You will regret it if you cheap out.

OK. Did I miss anything?

We have a busy weekend ahead of us. Auntie Dani's getting married!
Prepare for a long post about that as well as a ton of pics of Calvin in his tux.
I can't wait!