Claire is 4 Months!

Sunday, February 26, 2012
This is a bit late. Ryan's grandpa passed away last week so we have been extremely busy and occupied with many other things. For now though, we'll focus on Claire being 4 months and we'll get into everything else in another post.

She weighed 13 pounds and 5 ounces and was 24.5 inches long at her appointment on the 15th. She was doing everything she needed to be doing and took her shots like a champ (minimal screaming).

She smiles and giggles all the time, sleeps without her swaddle through the night, but has had some trouble as of late being put down for the night. The doctor said it is ok to let her cry it out and to also begin putting her down awake so she learns how to put herself to sleep. It hasn't been successful for naps at all and at this point she still sleeps better in the swing. We weren't able to get Henry napping in the crib for some time yet either.

She has found her hands and loves to stare at them and watch herself move her fingers. She's also reaching for things and has a really good grasp on objects. She's pushed herself up a few times when on her belly, rolled from back to tummy once and had another hour of rolling over from her tummy to her back. She squeals all the time and coos, loves laughing at Henry and makes great eye contact. Toys are becoming more interesting and entertaining for her and she loves her playmat/gym.

The doctor said we could begin solids anytime from 4 months to 6 months and that the two signs that show readiness are supported sitting and showing more interest in real people food. Which, as of the last two weeks, she has been reaching for everything (food, drink and otherwise) in my hands. So, we tried out her first taste of cereal this morning (and by cereal, I mean a couple teaspoons of milk sprinkled with a few cereal flakes. She seemed to like the taste and was reaching for more, but she obviously had some difficulty swallowing it. If this girl is going to love her food, it's going to be a whole new experience for us!

That is all I will report on for now, since we are inching closer to 5 months already and I'll save the rest for that update.

Here are the pictures I took back on the 10th.

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Isn't this lace romper the cutest thing ever!?
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If Children's Place needs some models...

Wednesday, February 8, 2012
You won't be able to stand how cute these are. :) The one in the top left? Seriously, LOL.

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Hat is courtesy of Children's place. It seriously couldn't get any cuter!
And I love how the storyboards turned out. I arrange pictures like this for better blog viewing, but I may just end up printing these off like this! I'd need to make something similar of Claire and they would look great hung up together in the house somewhere.

You would never know the struggle these images were to get, though. On second thought, the word "struggle" is quite possibly a big understatement. We'll just say I gave up after 15 minutes of trying to get ONE good picture and then an hour later somebody decided he really did want to watch Nemo (the promise I made him in exchange for cooperation).

These were all, by the way, taken in our new loft! The whole point of them was primarily to see how the wall photographed and what the light was like in there (and to catch the hat in action, of course). There is one more coat of paint needed downstairs and all the trim work is going up tonight and then it is DONE! After 38 days of a disheveled house, it will all be done tonight! I have been taking progress pictures with my phone and will take some finished ones with the real camera tonight or tomorrow and will have a separate post devoted to all that.

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He laid down by Claire and she reached her hand out to him. He thought she was trying to hold his hand...and look at how happy he is about it. Love capturing moments like this.


And because I love this one (and have two children napping at the same time), you get to see it now. I'll likely include this on the official 4 month ones as well.


Trying out the new floor in the loft.



Friday, February 3, 2012

It's the 500th post! *confetti!*

Hard to believe this blog is over 3 years old. I've averaged 166 posts per year, which comes out to 13 per month. I know I could do better--especially for you daily readers, so I will try to get something up here a little more frequently. But as you will read, time is such a luxury these days and blogging falls towards the bottom of the list...right next to "cleaning the pantry".

Lucky for you, here's a few oldies.

First, Henry at 6 days old.


And, Claire at 4 days old. My goodness they grow fast.


I tried to come up with something super creative for this, but this was the best I could do. It's been a week chock full of too short naps---or in Claire's case, many a day this week, no naps at all. Thus, my list of completed projects for the week include diaper changes and food on the table 3 times a day, with not much time (or hands) for anything else. I've also pretty much been a single parent each night this past month as Ryan finishes up our loft project, so we'll just say this momma is exhausted when 8pm rolls around. I've had more interest in snuggling myself up with a blanket and perusing pinterest on the ipad until my eyes close 5 minutes later than editing, blogging, etc. The loft, by the way, should be completed or nearly completed by the end of the weekend. (at the very least, the walls will be primed, because I'm at a loss for paint colors).

So any way, how about a quick update?

Since the de-swaddling began on Sunday night we have had two nights where she woke up between 9-10, and 3 nights where she slept through the night (one of which I laid her down semi-awake and she fell asleep on her own!). It seems we are on a path of continuing to sleep through the night! As I mentioned above, however, naps are an entirely different story. At least two days this week she slept for no more than 30-45 minutes the entire day. This is for a variety of reasons:

Reason 1: Her morning nap pretty much doesn't happen if I don't take Henry upstairs or downstairs to occupy him for an hour.
Reason 2: As soon as I try to lay her in the swing, she wakes up.
Reason 3: The batteries need to be recharged in the swing, thus when #2 happens, the swing isn't available to put her back to sleep. Note to self? Recharge the flippin' batteries at night. Today, I laid on the ground (where she couldn't see me) and pushed her swing for 10 minutes until she fell asleep.
Reason 4: Mocha braves her bark collar and barks.

I would love to get into a nap routine. Most certainly would love it. Since we are no longer swaddled, I thought it would be a great time to start transitioning her naps to her crib so she can

1. Continue to learn how to put herself to sleep.
2. Hopefully have decent, undisturbed naps.
3. And so Henry doesn't need to be forced to whisper for one hour.
4. And, when the day comes that we no longer need to nap in the swing, it means the swing can be packed up :) It takes up a LOT of room.

It didn't go so well yesterday. In fact, it didn't go at all. I put her down sleeping and she woke up in the process. She actually just laid there and made some noises for about 5-10 minutes before she started to fuss. It was a tired fuss though, so I gave her a bit more time to settle. The fuss turned into an all out cry so I went to calm her down. I went back in two more times total, but she wasn't having it. We were out this morning, so I guess we'll try again tomorrow and see what happens.

I know we didn't transition Henry to napping in his crib for quite some time, but he was taking naps at daycare shortly after starting there around 3-4 months.

In other Claire news, she isn't rolling over at all yet, but enjoys tummy time for great lengths of time, so I'm sure it will come soon. She giggles and laughs all the time, looks for us when we walk away, and is quite smitten with her daddy lately. We brought her high chair up so that she could at least sit up at the table with us and she spends most of dinner staring at Ryan. She's starting to develop her hand/eye coordination as she's able to grasp certain objects you place in front of her (it's so cute to watch her concentrate so hard). Her feedings are consistently 2.5-3 hours apart now, so she usually gets 5-6 a day depending on wake up time. I'll stop there since I should be doing another update on her next week. Her next appointment is on the 15th. So excited to see where she is on the growth charts. 

As for Henry, he is officially 2.5 years old! Crazy that we are on the downward slope to 3! These days his favorite things to do include playing peek-a-boo with Claire to make her giggle, turning his tunnel into a "rocketship", cooking food, and especially "making coffee" on his new kitchen toy (thank you $25.00 Target clearance!), using his tools to help daddy, playing with his basketball hoop and playing with his Leap Frog Junior.

Jake and the Neverland Pirates is likely the current favorite TV show (or, a very, very close 2nd to Mickey). If this keeps up I think a pirate themed 3rd birthday party is in order (thank you, pinterest, for encouraging me to think about party themes 6 months in advance). We also listen to "pirate music" It's actually quite catchy. Check it out here. My personal favorite is number 15: "Talk Like a Pirate".

As I said, it's very catchy, and Ryan and I both have it stuck in our heads often. The other day while we were making dinner Ryan said out loud, "Oh man, I have pirate music stuck in my head". To which Henry replied, "What you say, daddy? What's on your head? Let me see your head!" Pretty sure he was looking for pirate music on top of Ryan's head. Oh, it was too cute.

Eating has been going slightly better some days. We've gotten pretty good with "take x number of bites and then you get a surprise". This strategy absolutely doesn't work on any new foods, but it does usually work to get him to eat more favorite foods after his initial "I'm all done". He also ate raw broccoli again yesterday for the first time since Christmas. He seems to really like it with ranch. His banana bread fell into the ranch yesterday, and he also ate that and exclaimed, "mmm, that's tasty." Really? This kid can stomach ranch on banana bread but won't eat mac and cheese? I guess ranch makes everything better.

If you are a FB friend of mine you saw my status updates about preschool last week. I've signed him up, but won't know if we got into the class until next month some time. My first choice is two mornings a week, and the classroom model is very similar to the model we have at my own school (a certified preschool teacher and ECSE teacher team teach and are in the room full time, every day). I'm so excited for him to go because he really, really needs the social exposure, but I'm sure that first day of drop off will be super difficult (for both him and me). I honestly, wasn't 100% impressed with the open house I went to though. The rooms were set up great, but the personnel could have been a bit better. Admittedly, my expectations are probably way too high. The deposit is refundable, so I'm going to maybe check out 1 or 2 more places coming up.

I think that about does it. I apologize for any typos and run-on sentences. I get so excited that I have 15 minutes all to myself to blog that I just type as fast as I can to get all the content in my head out before Claire wakes up and then I re-read and these super long sentences are all over the place and I'm too lazy to fix them because Claire will surely wake up soon and then the post will never be finished and you won't have anything to read. ;) How many words were in that one? ;)

If I took the time to actually save the post and edit it later, I'd never post it (in fact, I have probably 2-3 posts that I started writing but haven't gotten back to), so a typo and run-on sentence riddled post is what you get.

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