Thursday, June 30, 2011

Baby Led Weaning

My take on baby foods has changed {Shocked?} since having Little Miss. After lots of reading I decided to start solids, at the earliest, when she hit 6 months. She had a bite here and there from about 5 months but we're talking about a total of like five times. When her 6 month birthday hit I tried introducing solids without much enthusiasm on her part. Tried the jarred foods and they were, eh, not a hit. I decided to skip cereals all together so that pretty much left us with following Baby Led Weaning.

It has worked out GREAT for us! She, unfortunately, seems to have inherited my sensitive digestive system and although she showed all the developmental milestone of being "ready", she wasn't. Baby Led Weaning allowed her to decide how much to eat and of what foods offered to her. She really did not start "eating" until just the last week at 8 months old.

*The first year nutrition comes mostly from breastmilk {this is her case} or formula. Solids are a means of learning new tastes and textures in the first year so really no pressure to start exactly at 6 months anyways. Heck, our pediatrician told us if we didn't start until a year it's not that big of a deal since her nutrition is coming from breastmilk.

We have learned though that she still can't tolerate wheat {one of the things I had to eliminate early on in breastfeeding but since about 5 months she was able to tolerate again in breastmilk} so that has been eliminated, again.

It still baffles me to sit down at the table and have a meal with her... Her eating buckwheat pancakes and fruit and me eating a bagel. Crazy!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Old dog??

Hubby and I are dog lovers... Especially our two furbabies, Jack and Jill. Jack is our pound puppy Jack Russell Terrier who we are guessing is about 9-10 years old. Jill is another rescue, Lab/American Bulldog, who is about 6 years old.

Over the years, obviously, they have aged- especially Jack. He's always been antsy when we start pulling out the moving boxes but the last few moves have been really hard on him. We put him on anti-anxiety meds {I know, crazy!} while I was pregnant as he just couldn't handle all the changes of moving boxes out, again, and sensing something big going on. We've tried taking him off several times but he just can't... It sucks.

Although we have yet to start actually packing for the upcoming move, he has peed on the floor a couple of times. Old dog? Getting back at us since 8 months later and the baby still here? Needing dosage increased?

I really HATE taking the dogs to the vet unless absolutely 100% necessary... $40 just for the "office visit", really?! Then they always want to do blood work and check urine and stool... Throw in the meds that are needed.. Add in any possible x-ray or ultrasound and we've gone bankrupt, ON A DOG!

Yet the dog just had his teeth cleaned a couple weeks ago......... That's ALL Charles.

So, any pet owners out there have any thoughts on what's going on with our Jack??? I would wrap a diaper around his butt, err, ya know, but he'd just chew it to shreds and we'd fear intestinal blockage so to the vet we would rush only to walk away with a $350 vet bill and an "all clear" stamp on the paper.

Yeah, we've had our fair share of emergency and regular vet appointments for Jack. Our $20 puppy has cost us thousands over the years! Not including yearly vaccinations... Oh but the stories we have to share because of him! :-)

Friday, June 24, 2011

Baby Signing Time

I have a new addiction! Babysteals.com! Ah! I've scored several fantastic items from them... BabyBanz Hat, BabyLegs, Swaddlebees Econappi, and my new favorite Baby Signing Time!

Long before I got pregnant I was enthralled with sign language. I think it is beautiful and have wanted to learn for some time. When I learned about baby signing I was hooked and this was long before I was pregnant! The idea of communicating with my children before they could speak, amazing!

When babysteals.com had Baby Signing Time as a "steal" I had to buy it! I am so glad I did!!! Little Miss doesn't watch TV and still isn't into the little segments but we love the books and flash cards and CDs! I love the movies since I am a visual learner and the books themselves just are not cutting it... I have learned so many signs from this kid series and try to sign to Little Miss throughout the day. I will most certainly be on the look out for Signing Time and hoping that one day they will create a visual program for adults! :-)

Our favorite signs are "more", "milk", and "all done". In an attempt to teach her "more", I did the signs and she started clapping. I don't know if it was her version of the sign or she was clapping in joy that I knew what she wanted! :-)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

8 months

Today my sweet baby girl is 8 months old... It seems like she was 3 months, I blinked, and she's 8 months now! I sure hope the rest of her childhood doesn't go this fast!!!

She is all over the place! Perfected crawling the proper way last month as well as pulling to stand and cruising around with minimal holding on. It's crazy!

What we crack up the most with though is her personality... we are so going to be in trouble as she seems to be following awfully close to my "monster meghan" days. She has figured out temper tantrums, especially while getting her outfit changed.

You can see the light bulb going off with cause and effect... She hits a toy with another toy and waits for the music to come on. It's great! And figuring out where to place her hands so she can accurately open cabinet doors. :-)

And my favorite these days is what we affectionately refer to as "dog hurdling", the next Olympic sport. She makes a b-line for whichever dog is closer and crawls over them, except she forgets to go all the way over and just lays on top of them. Eventually the dog gets tired of this and {Jack} rolls over and thus she does a somersault while {Jill} just gets up and thus Little Miss goes rolling. Hilarious!

I love watching her learn new things and explore every day! So thankful I can call her my daughter...

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Family Photo

Love Kristine Lynn Photography!!! This is our first family photo that included our fur-babies! Sad that the dogs are cooperating better than the baby and I...

Thursday, June 16, 2011

"Secrets" Shared

Some big things are happening in our household... No, Little Miss is not going to be a big sister {yet}. Big things that I have had on my heart to share- not to have questions asked -but to give glory to God!

A little back story-

When we moved to Missouri in July 2008 we were ecstatic! Getting out of Georgia was a dream come true! We love our family and friends still there and miss everyone dearly yet we felt like getting away we were able to spread our wings and fly! Living in Missouri has been wonderful for our marriage! We have learned some very valuable lessons and know that the priority is our family, the three of us. We have learned that boundaries are a necessity. Living in Missouri gave us forceful boundaries. We needed this to learn. Saying "Yes" to something means saying "No" to something else.

After the first year, we knew we wanted to get closer to family but were dead set against going back to Georgia. We had no hurry but knew it would be an eventual thing. Year two came and we began searching more... South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, and even possibly Florida were our options. And we pursued these options with all clearly being a closed door from God.

And then we had a baby...

We continued to pursue moving closer to Georgia without actually being in Georgia. Charles applied for a position in Jacksonville, FL. When he was offered, and accepted, the position we were so excited! We were going to be 4-5 hours from our family! Close enough for easier visits yet far enough away where it was quality time instead of the number of visits. And yet, all doors were closed. He ended up pulling out from that offer after learning it was a mandatory 6 day work week with 10 hour days, as it had been for the last 3 years and was going to be for the next 3-5 years. He would never get to see Little Miss. He would never have the time to make that short drive to visit our family in Georgia. It just wasn't good timing. Him pulling back from that job was one of the hardest decisions we have made as a family and him in his career. Despite this all, one door continued to have a light shine on it though, Georgia. So many people encouraged Charles to look at Atlanta Tower as a possibility...

We accepted Missouri was going to be our home for the next many years. We purchased a house in December 2010 that we love and threw away all the moving boxes that have faithfully moved us since we sold our house in Georgia and moved to Missouri {4 moves if you're not keeping count}. We were here to stay.

Although we have met some great folks here, nothing beats the thought of raising Little Miss around our family {who the majority} are in Georgia. And in April, on our way home from Nashville, TN on our first family of 3 vacation, we did just that. Considered Atlanta as a possibility. We prayed. We talked. We spent countless hours asking God for direction and clarification. And direction He gave- We both feel very strongly that Georgia will be home again. Not sure when. Not sure how. But we know that is the direction we are being led.

We listed our house for sale on June 7. June 8- we had an offer. Less than 24 hours from listing, we had an offer! A couple days of counter offerings and we had an accepted contract on June 10!

In today's market?! Really!?!? How could that be just a coincidence? Nope. That was God at work.

And it gets even more exciting! The contractor that screwed us over... Yeah. It's been a rough go. Anyways, needless to say God made it all right! We are in absolute awe watching God work in our life!

We are set to close on or before August 12... Where we will go to? Not sure yet. Still waiting for God to reveal that part to us as we have no word yet on a transfer for Charles so we wait oh so patiently as we humanly can trying not to screw up the plan by jumping the gun and trying to take charge ourselves.

I share all this for two reasons- The first to give glory to God! We were obedient and moved when we felt led and God followed through. Secondly, not to have questions asked but to ask for prayer on our behalf. It is one thing to fly by the seat of your pants with just you and your spouse but when you add a child to the mix it gets a lot harder to just trust with blind faith. Pray that we will be open to moving when God says move. That we would have an overwhelming peace about it that would calm all humanly questions that will arise.

We are excited to be on this journey and nervous at the same time! God is working, that we have no doubt about!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

"Strikes for Storks"

I am so super excited to share that Lost Stork Foundation's first annual bowling fundraiser, "Strikes for Storks" is underway!

A bowling fundraiser will be held August 27, 2011 in Newnan, Georgia from 1-4 pm! This is a family event so bring the everyone but the dog!

3 Games! Shoe rental! Choice of hotdog, hamburger, or pizza! Drink!

Enjoy time with family and friends along with participating in a Silent Auction and winning door prizes!

Tickets are $20 for one to three tickets. Four or more tickets are $15 each.

*Must be purchased together to receive the discount. Tickets are non-refundable.

For more information, please e-mail info@loststorkfoundation.org

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Vaccine Posts

I knew when I first tackled this topic that it would be a work in progress no doubt. What I didn't realize is how LONG that work in progress would be! I really feel the pressure as I have put off vaccinations until her first birthday and that's just a short 4.5 months away! Will we start then or postpone another year? I need to complete my research so Charles and I may decide what we feel is best for Little Miss and our family.

So I write to say, please bare with me as this is one heck of a topic to tackle and as I compile more FACTUAL {realize how difficult it is to separate the facts from strong opinions?!} information on each vaccination available.

If you have any resources you wish to share on FACTUAL information, please feel free to e-mail me and I'll look over and possibly incorporate into the different vaccination posts!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Make up 101

I seriously need some tutoring in the make up department! I suck at it. No dodging that.

I received a promotion package from Mary Kay as apart of the BlogHer program and was sent the new Compact Mini, Shy Blush mineral cheek color, and a beautiful brown eyes bundle that included Silky Caramel, Midnight Star, and Sienna.

The colors are all so beautiful! They feel so smooth and natural. The compact mini is so cool! Very handy and something I could totally carry with me in the midst of diapers, wipes, keys, and phone. :-) You know, the priorities.

I'm about to fully admit my complete makeup niaveness here...

I had, really still have, NO CLUE what to do with the brown eyes bundle?! I have blue eyes... Does this make a difference in application? Or does the brown bundle colors draw different focus despite the blue color of my eyes? Playing with makeup is fun, it's when I actually have to wear it out of the house that I have no clue what I'm doing! haha!

So what makeup tips and tricks can you share with me, the self proclaimed makeup novice?! I don't want to spend more than 3 minutes putting together my face, what little I can tolerate anyways, for fear of Little Miss emptying out the bathroom trash can in that time frame or similar "Mischievous Madelyn" act.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Batten Disease Awareness Weekend!

June 3 - 5 is Batten Disease Awareness Weekend

What is Batten Disease? I'd never hear of it until my mom met Kim Fair.

Travis Jack was born beautiful and healthy. Kim & Dean Fair had the perfect family with two adorable, active little boys. When Travis was 3, Kim started noticing that he would occasionally stumble, concerned, they took him to the Doctor. That visit was the first of endless Doctor and Hospital visits. Travis was diagnosed with epilepsy and treated. But when things didn't get better, there were more and more tests. Two years went by before Travis was diagnosed with Late Infantile Batten Disease. For nearly 6 years Kim and Dean watched their precious son's health deteriorate until his life ended prematurely just before his 9th Birthday. He was wheel-chair bound, blind and fed via tube. But....he loved to snuggle and he could light up a room with his smile! No disease is good, but some are more cruel than others. After hearing Travis' story I went on line to read up on the disease I'd never heard of. Batten Disease is very cruel.

When my mom first told me about Kim's son I felt gutwrenching sorrow. I can't even begin to fathom having to watch my child slowly die knowing there wasn't a thing I could do about it. Neither Kim or Dean knew they carried this gene!

I encourage you to go to the website below and read about it yourself, then help others become aware of this horrible disease! Kim never wants another child to suffer like her Travis did and no parent to experience what her and Dean had to. BDSRA not only does research, but has an incredible support system including a medical equipment exchange. Batten is not well known, research needs to be done. I looked at their budget and very little goes to administration!

Again, I encourage you to visit the website www.bdsra.org and maybe even make a donation in memory of Travis Jack Fair.

BDSRA : Neurological Brain Disorder : Batten Disease Support and Research Association
www.bdsra.org

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Photo Re-cap!

I am absolutely still floating around on cloud 9 somewhere... Life as a mommy is so much more than I ever dreamed it would be! This little girl is love in so many different ways! Seeing her smiles, comforting her tears, the giggles and watching her grow every single day just makes my heart burst with joy!

She's cut two teeth now {and as of yesterday seems to be working on another given the low grade temp she's running, again} See them? So cute! She's crawling on all fours but still much prefers army crawling. Well, actually, she prefers standing and walking with help.


My mom and Ray came for my birthday weekend. Love this photo of my mom and Little Miss! I think Madelyn is starting to remember my mom as she is taking less and less time to warm up to her despite being hesitant with everyone else still.


Yep. This is how brave my just barely 7 month old daughter is... She's much more frequently now letting go and standing for short seconds herself! She was holding onto my {still pj wearing} leg and after a few seconds, went back to the comfort of holding onto it. She likes to pull up to standing using any and everything in sight, including the dogs and curtains, and shoe laces! Not kidding. I imagine she'll definitely be walking by her first birthday...


And our attempts at capturing her monthly birthday pictures, 7 months actually, were a chore this time! Darn teeth bring low grade fevers and make her want mama's comfort. Yes, she still wears the teething necklace as we do believe it helps some but certainly does not take away all the teething pain. {To be expected though}


After a falling from co-sleeper incident on my birthday, we have transitioned Little Miss to her crib. Suprisingly, she took to it very well! I was shocked as we had tried several times before and she was clearly not ready. She is now going about 5-6 hours before waking for her first feed and is up 2-3 times to nurse during the night. I do not like that she is now getting up for the day between 5-5:30am though... I really liked the 7-7:30am wakings!

I never knew I would be so sad in her moving to the crib! I miss our snuggles. I miss waking refreshed despite her waking the same amount of times during the night to nurse- in bed she latched to nurse herself with minimal effort/waking on my part thus getting more sleep. Now I am up for 20 min at a time 2-3 times a night to nurse her and then have to settle back down to sleep myself. Not liking this but she seems to sleep better, at least in the beginning, so I'll suffer.