Friday, April 29, 2011

Worth It

This afternoon on our way to Shane's speech session, I was reflecting on this week. It was a tough one with some tears shed and many hours of sleep lost. Adalyn's sleeping situation continues to be frustrating and stressful. And at times I feel like I am morning our family of three. When there was more freedom to come and go either individually, Shane and I together or as a family. I miss doing things with Shane during the day outside of the house. I miss being able to get errands done during the week, so the weekend could be full of fun and adventures. I miss going out in the evenings by myself to book club, bible study, meeting friends, etc.

As I was deep in thought I hear the loudest laugh come from Adalyn back in her car seat. I look in the rear view mirror to see Shane talking in a funny voice and making his stuffed bunny Hop dance around. In turn making Addie laugh hysterically. Over and over again, Shane would do this and Adalyn would laugh and talk to him. It was the sweetest moment. And just what I needed to adjust my thinking and look forward to the time when all four of us can get out of the house and have fun adventures together.

I know that this phase of babyhood and sleep deprivation won't be forever. But in the depths of  it some times the end of the tunnel seems so far away. Moments like these help to shed light on what can be a dark long journey.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Quickie Card

It's been awhile since I have been able to sit down design and make a card. But Kenny needed thank you cards recently for his birthday, so I had a very good excuse to take a moment and make some cards. And literally that was all the time I had was a moment. In less then 30 minutes (including clean up) I made these 5 cards. They aren't anything over the top and I used the paper's "busyness" to work for me, so that I didn't have to do much designing to the card. I finished it off with a few well placed sparkles (which make everything look better!) and tada 5 thank you cards under 30 minutes that I used my supplies on hand for. I am sure if I went to the store to pick up 5 thank you cards it would have taken me longer then 30 minutes with getting the kids in and out of the car and driving there, etc.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Almost Wordless Wednesday

All four of us went out to dinner for Daddy's birthday a couple weeks ago. It went very smoothly. We just had to quickly squeeze it in between Adalyn's last nap and before her early bedtime.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Rice Cereal

Last week on Addie's 5 month birthday I decided to start her on rice cereal. Back in the day when Shane was a baby the norm was at 6 months to start with solids. Now there seems to be varying thoughts on the solid food start point: 4 months or 6 months. The 4 month group says start early to avoid allergies and the 6 month group says start later to avoid allergies.  Like so many issues with babies there just isn't a straight forward answer. Since Little A is still not even close to sleeping through the night and some say rice cereal helps with sleeping through the night (though others say it doesn't....another clear as mud topic). I decided to split the difference and go with rice cereal at 5 months and stick to only rice cereal the whole month. I won't introduce anything new until after she turns 6 months old. She'll also be on a gluten free diet until at least 18 months as well. Just a little extra precaution I took with Shane. It is so easy to do at their age, I don't see any reason to not just keep it out of  her diet for as long as I can.

Adalyn and her first attempt at rice cereal.

Day 1:
AM feeding -- Little A isn't so in love with the cereal part, but thinks the spoon is awesome to chew on. Man the faces she made!

Day 2:
AM feeding -- Still making the faces and attempting to eat the spoon instead.
PM feeding -- No more faces, not interested in the spoon, now onto the bib. Mmmm....bib appears to taste better then rice cereal. At least she wants that in her mouth.

Day 3
AM feeding -- Some chewing like motions were made, but not sure much if at all was swallowed.
PM feeding -- Loving the bowl now...must try and grab the bowl.

Day 4
AM feeding -- The faces have stopped. But the love with the spoon continues. Still a large lack of interest in the actual rice cereal.
PM feeding -- More fun with the spoon.

Day 5
AM feeding -- Continued lack of interest. I mentioned to Kenny I think we should take a few days off.
PM feeding -- With Mema and Papa as witnesses, she "chewed" and swallowed her first few bites of rice cereal. The texture caught her off guard and made her cough some even, so I know some was going down.

Day 6
AM feeding -- Kenny said she was not interested much again.
PM feeding -- She seemed to not mind it and may have actually swallowed some. Guess we'll keep plowing along. We seem to be making slow progress in the interest area.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Menu Monday

I am not feeling to inspired today to create the menu for this week. Let's see what I can come up with on the fly.

Monday -- leftovers from Easter (Ham, Mashed Potatoes, veggies and rolls)

Tuesday -- we have lots of ham, so I am going to come up with some sort of ham dish to use it up in.

Wednesday -- leftovers

Thursday -- halibut and something on the side

Friday -- My Brother and SIL are going to be in town for dinner. Not sure what I am going to make yet.

Saturday -- leftovers from whatever I make on Friday

Sunday -- Pizza or BBQ depending on the weather

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Sunday

Easter Weekend fun...

Shane's 1st public egg hunt. Where his hand was glued to Kenny's. He found 5 eggs. 
There were too many people for his liking. 
But he was a trooper and stuck with it.
Adalyn out with Mema at the egg hunt enjoying the first sun we've had in a long time!
Addie enjoying her Easter basket.
Lots of Easter basket fun.
Egg dying.
Egg hunting.
A very rare picture of big brother and little sister together.
Shane took a FOUR hour nap today. 
He had just woken up, so I was able to bribe with some fun things in order to get my picture of them together.
Aren't they cute?!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Flashback Friday

Shane at 5 months
Shane at 3 years 10 months
Adalyn at 5 months
This picture makes me laugh!
Adalyn at 5 months in the Bumbo.
I took this picture because this was a little outfit that Kenny put Addie in one morning.
It was a great attempt at matching.
Shane 5 months old in the Bumbo.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Shane Moments

Shane finally got a chance this weekend to try out his bike (we need to get training wheels and get the chain fixed). He did awesome for his first time out.
He was so proud of himself, too.
Yes, his helmet is missing. Daddy didn't get it on his head.
Kenny also had just taught him how to use the breaks, so he kept breaking.
Thanks Lynette for passing the bike down to us!!

Here is a little video of Shane dancing around the kitchen in the best outfit ever.
He was doing this for a good 10 minutes before I started recording him,
which of course, he stopped the moment I did that and wanted to see.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Studio J

Earlier this year Close To My Heart released their new online scrapbooking program called Studio J. The last couple months I have finally had some time to sit down and play with it and at the same time fall in LOVE! The first time I used it I completed 7 two page layouts in one evening. I had to pry myself away from the computer. It felt so good to get those events onto pages. And when I got up the feeling of having no mess to clean up was overwhelming! I couldn't believe literally how beautiful the pages turned out, how "real" the pages looked, how quick it was to do them, that there was no mess, I didn't have to print out pictures, that I could do it on my laptop where ever I wanted to (like in front of the TV while catching up on my Grey's Anatamy), that I instantly had jpegs of my pages, and that the cost was equal or even less then paper scrapbooking.

Trust me, I am NOT giving up paper scrapping by any means. I am just supplementing my scrapbooking life with this. A way to keep me on top of my pictures. A way for me to stay current with my scrapping. And a way for me to catch up on any thing I fall behind on. Adalyn's baby book is going to be all done with Studio J. I already have pages up to month 3 (meaning I am just 1 month behind). Shane's wasn't completed until he was over a 1 year old.

The program is so easy to use. If you have ever used Shutterfly or Snapfish then you can use Studio J. If I have you curious at all, you can check it out for FREE. Make your own layout and see for yourself. You may just become addicted like I am.

Here are some of my layouts I have completed (click to make bigger): 

Here are some layouts that a fellow consultant recently completed. She inspired me to try different elements on my pages.

If you don't want to take my word for it. A friend of mine recently talked about Studio J over on her blog. Check out what she has to say about it.

Stay tuned....I am working on my own special Studio J rewards program.

Double Jogger

Last week we got a double jogging stroller. I am absolutely in LOVE with it. I hadn't ever really thought of getting a double stroller of any sorts because when we go on walks Shane always walks. That way I can get him to burn some energy and let off some steam. But now with some baby fat to lose, icky weather outside that doesn't seem to be letting up, the ablility to now send him out into the backyard by himself to burn energy, and walks with Shane just are not long enough or fast enough to burn any real calories, I decided that a double jogger was needed. I had searched on Craig's List for a couple weeks in an attempt to score one cheap, but with no such luck and I refused to spend $600+ on a new "fancy" big brand name stroller. I did some research and came across a Baby Trend jogger that had a front swivel wheel for me and it could be a fixed wheel for Kenny when he runs. The price was unbeatable, it had all the features of a super fancy expensive stroller and awesome reviews.

We've had a crazy week since we got it, but have taken it out a couple times. I can't wait to start taking it out all the time! I stick the kiddos in it and grab a dog (I haven't tried taking both dogs yet). Shane zones out and has a good rest time in there. Adalyn didn't like the bumps at first, but is already doing a lot better in it. I turn the iPod on and we stroll around the hood rocking out, getting some fresh area and burning those last bothersome baby pounds off!  It will be even better when the sun starts shining on our walks, too.

Monday, April 18, 2011

5 Months Old

My Baby Girl is 5 months old today. She certainly isn't a little bitty baby any more. Little Adalyn is growing up and learning new things left and right. She is super close to rolling over onto her tummy from her back. Lately we've been finding her in her crib on her side kicking the side of her crib railings with her feet. Just on the edge of going all the way over.
She is still the happiest thing in the world. Always ready to give you a big smile. I think she even tries to "kiss" you. Which looks more like she is attempting to eat or suck on your face. Which then leaves you covered in cold, wet slobber. But I'll take one of those "kisses" any day!!

Her cheeks and thigh rolls continue to get bigger and bigger and cuter and cuter. She is out growing her clothes daily. Which isn't so bad if you have a wardrobe like she does.
Addie continues to improve upon her sleeping skills as well. But is easily thrown off with a nap that may be too short or if we spend just a little too much time out and about. On good nights she is up only once to eat and bad nights she is up 3 times. With such an early bedtime of between 5-6pm, she is often up for good come 5-5:30am. On good days we can get her back asleep until 7am. She naps usually 3 times a day, which on average are 45 minutes to 1 hour long. I'll take it compared to where we were just a few short weeks ago with that evil pacifier.

I continue to try and live in the moment with my beautiful little girl. To enjoy the moments that we have with her now as a baby. But it is also so hard to not think ahead and look forward to all the exciting things to come. Like eating solid foods, sitting up, crawling, walking, talking!! Yes, I wish to keep her cute and snugly forever, but I also want to continue to see her grown and become her own sweet little self.

Menu Monday

Back to a normal week where we actually get to use our kitchen.

Monday -- Chicken Noodle Soup Casserole(we never had it a couple weeks ago when it was on the menu)

Tuesday -- leftovers

Wednesday -- Pasta Dogs I made this for Shane one day for lunch and couldn't believe how fun and good it was.

Thursday -- Crock Pot Beef

Friday -- leftovers

Saturday -- Mema and Papa will be in town for Easter. I'm feeling BBQ hamburgers maybe?

Sunday -- Easter Dinner....all I know so far is we'll be having Ham. The rest I haven't quite figured out.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Garage Doors

A couple weeks ago we got new garage doors. I certainly would have never told you how excited I would have been to get these things, but I was and still am. Our old ones were original to the house and had springs that open and closed them. The springs scared me. Every time I was near them I would think what if one of these things broke and hit me or a kiddo?! They were also super loud and located under the kids bedrooms. At night or when someone was napping we couldn't park in the garage.

BEFORE (old garage doors)
This picture was taken last year before we moved into the house.
AFTER (new garage doors)
This picture is a huge reminder of how crappy our weather has been 
so far this year. Everything outside is still soaking wet, mossy and gross. 
We NEED some sunlight around here to start drying things out!!!!

Also on the To Do List: new siding or a paint job. 
I'm dying for a new color on this place.
And a new front door. Which I believe will be happening this summer.

Besides the garage doors looking nicer, being quieter and safer, they also keep the garage insulated so much better. Which in turn keeps the kids rooms so much warmer.

We also used a locally owned company called Better Built Doors. After getting 3 or 4 estimates, they came in with lowest bid and had the best quality of products, too. The owner came out and did the estimate and was very patient with me and all my questions. I even called him the next day with more questions and he was still nice. The guy who came out to install the doors with very friendly and did a great job going over all the cool features of the garage doors (who knew they could be so fancy?).

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Kitchen Remodel Phase III COMPLETED!

This past week we completed phase III of our kitchen remodel, which was new cabinets. We had our existing cabinets refaced and we also had additional custom made cabinets put into the kitchen. They are made of Alder and the color is called Harvest. After all is said and done we will have doubled our cabinet and countertop space.

Everything has been moved back into the cabinets and we have empty shelves! It is super exciting to have all of my huge kitchen items such as my crock pot and Kitchen Aid mixer to all have homes inside of cabinets, instead of scattered around in crazy places since they wouldn't fit in the kitchen before. Phase IV is new countertops. We are in the process of getting estimates and picking a company. The last phase will be new bamboo flooring in the kitchen and dining room. I really, really can't wait to have those two things completed. Then with a new coat of paint we'll have a awesome new kitchen.

BEFORE (existing cabinets)

AFTER (existing cabinets)

BEFORE (this is where the wall between the dining room and kitchen use to be)

AFTER (with new custom made cabinets)
We now have TWO pull out cabinets with trash cans in them!!! 
We have so much more room in the pantry getting rid of the 
recycle, yard waste, garbage and dog food bins, 
all now neatly stored in a beautiful cabinet.

AFTER (looking into the kitchen from the dining room.)
There will be a bar seating area when we get the new countertops in.
 Click here to see pictures from our previous phases and other before pictures.

We used a local family owned company called Heritage Homecraft. They are the only company in our area that uses real wood to reface cabinets (instead of laminate). They did a fantastic job and were super patient with us when on the 2nd day of installation we asked them to move the placement of the new cabinets. Our original plan of having the bar area into the kitchen made no sense after seeing the cabinets in place.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Menu Monday

Our kitchen is in the middle of getting new cabinets. SO....we won't be using the kitchen much, or really at all. Currently the stove is in the living room and the refrigerator is in the dining room.

Monday -- We'll be ordering pizza in.

Tuesday-Friday -- The rest of the week Shane, Adalyn and I will be in Sequim away from all the noise. Kenny will be on his own.

Saturday and Sunday -- We'll have to see how things go when we get back home. This weekend seems forever away at this point!!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Menu Monday

Monday -- Spaghetti Pie

Tuesday -- Leftovers

Wednesday -- Kenny's Birthday Dinner -- He requested something like a steak sandwich or French Dip. I'll be piecing this together using a couple different recipes.

Thursday -- Chicken Noodle Soup Casserole in the crock pot

Friday -- (Kenny's Parents will be in town for the weekend) Baked Potato Bar

Saturday -- We'll be having Kenny's Aunt and Uncle over for dinner. Still working on plans for this...

Sunday -- Waiting and seeing....

Saturday, April 2, 2011


Adalyn has been "developing" her laugh over the past 1.5 months. It first started out where you couldn't quite tell if she was crying or laughing. And she pretty much only laughed on her changing table. Now you can tickle her and get a laugh, but mostly she laughs at crazy sounds and noises you make. (hence, the weird sounds I am making on the video). This was from a couple weeks ago and even since then her laugh has gotten stronger and more laugh like. Making her laugh is the best thing ever!!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Arli and Adalyn

Cousin Arli spent the day with us on Monday. I just loved watching Adalyn and Arli lay next to each other. They were very curious and having fun checking each other out and "playing".

The A-Team (4 months old)