Sunday, April 22, 2012

Fairy Gardens

So, we have been working out in the yard a bunch the past 2 weekends.  We are really focused on getting both the front and the back looking good this year.  Even though we have been in this house 2 full summers.....we haven't done as much as we wanted to.

The first summer, my foot was broke!!!  And last summer, we were busy being pregnant, and having a newborn, so not a lot of yard work was happening.

The back doesn't look that bad, we had that sodded 2 years ago, and it looks decent (at least until we do major changes, like ripping off the deck)......but the front yard is pitiful!  The previous owners liked the bark dust look.....I mean seriously....there is nothing in the front yard, except for some over grown bushes right next to the house....here is a picture from when we first bought it.....the previous owners liked their landscaping "high and tight."

We have let the bushes go....it is like wild kingdom up in this joint!!!  So, we are biting the bullet and getting a landscaping designer to come to our house.  She will measure everything, talk to us about our ideas, and then go and develop a total plan for the whole front of the house.  We will do the work ourselves, but at least we will have a professional tell us what to do....

In the meantime, little Mo, has designed some of her own gardens, for the fairies....we gave her these old tubs....


This is where the fairies live..


This is their river hide-away...


And their playground...

Pretty fancy digs for a bunch of fairies!

The girls....


Who can resist pictures of our cutie-pies......just some random ones taken over the last several weeks.




Sunday, February 26, 2012

Better late.......than never!

I didn't realize how much time had gone by since my last post.....bad mommy! We have been busy. Many, many changes have taken place......in such a good way. But, we are having to adjust a bit. Scout is not working, and is a stay at home mom. It has been wonderful for her to get so much quality time with the Bean. Also, it means that overall we have more time to do stuff as a family. I LOVE IT. We don't spend all our free time taking care of business. Scout has time to take care of most of it during the week. We have been enjoying our family time so much more, so I guess we haven't updated, because we are out enjoying life as much as we can. Plus, Portland is having a super mild winter...which has given us lots of excuses to go to the park, take walks, and do more stuff outside.

We do have lots of photos/news to share.

The Bean is almost 7 months old! Her last doctor's appointment went really well. Since going off the boob, and switching to formula, she has started putting on weight! She was always at the low end of the chart for babies at her age....now she is in the 75%! Just reminds me that making the switch to formula was the right move! She is just under 18 pounds. She is so much more aware, and curious about things around her. She knows her name, and can sit up on her own. She is also rolling....which means baby-proofing needs to happen in the near future!

Isn't she just the cutest! Teething has also started. Nothing too bad, but she is really chewing on everything she can......this is Sophie, her favorite teething toy.

The next couple of pictures are her first time in a swing. Of course, her sissy had to get in on the action.


Mo has gotten so good at riding her bike. She really wants to take it to the skateboard park by our house so she can try the ramps......maybe one day.

So, I have been sewing more....I have started making a bunch of skirts for Mo. Why? For many reasons.....skirts are really the only thing she will wear, plus I can practice a lot of the basic skills that I need to practice....like cutting out fabric (who knew that would be so hard).....here is a skirt I made from one of Scout's old T-shirts...


Mo is not to be outdone.....she also wants to play "fashion." This is a shirt she created with some fabric paint and buttons.


She even makes things for her sister! Matching headbands are all the rage in Paris this season!

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Dairy Queen is Closed!

Today marks the last day I am officially breastfeeding. I actually have been pretending to breastfeed for a while now, but today I realized that the charade is over and that the Bean and I are done.

So the background......breastfeeding Mo wasn't a cakewalk in the beginning, but with the help of a Lactation Consultant, we finally got the hang of it. Mo was a nursing champion. She just took to it, and we could do it anywhere, and in any position. It was easy, and also I knew it was best for her.

I went back to work when she was 6 months old and I wasn't able to pump very much. I also didn't have a frozen milk stash, so she would nurse in the morning and night, and she got formula during the day. I was fine with this arrangement. I felt like formula is fine to give babies, so that wasn't an issue. This worked very well, and eventually one day, we dropped the morning nursing session, and then right after her first birthday, she was the one who just kind of stopped all together. It wasn't a big deal. I was proud that we made it that far.

Just to interject, I am not one of those women who totally enjoyed my breastfeeding experience. I didn't mind it, it was mildly enjoyable for a bit, but overall, I didn't feel any closer to Mo just because I nursed her. In fact, towards the end....I resented the fact that I HAD to breastfeed her, and I was just as ready to stop as she was.

Fast forward 5 years, and the Bean is born......she was a great nurser right away (much better than Mo)...but then, the jaundice happened! Jaundice made her very sleepy, lethargic, and she wouldn't nurse....she just didn't have the energy. So, we started her on a bottle right away. I was pumping, but she drank all of her milk for the first 10 days from a bottle. We tried to nurse, but she wasn't really into it, but we kept at it, and finally, she started taking the breast...yah-success!!! But, she has always preferred the bottle....it is just easier to drink out of.

The other problem.....she also developed a bad latch...so when she would nurse...it wasn't very productive...she would get some milk, but not enough....not enough to keep her healthy and not enough to help me make more milk....the only reason I am still making any milk at all, is that I have never stopped pumping....and pumping isn't nearly as good as nursing....and on top of that....pumping sucks....I hate it! So my supply has just slowly gone down, down, down.....I have been able to build a good freezer stash, but the Bean has gotten more formula than breastmilk for a while now.

So, we have been nursing in the morning and sometimes at night....and I felt like the morning nursing session was our best one. But over the past month, she has been super hungry after our morning nurse, and she ends up eating a full bottle shortly thereafter. That was clue #1 that she wasn't really getting any milk in the morning.

Clue #2....I am still a pumping fool, but my output is going WAY down.....I am getting anywhere from 2-4 ounces per day which is nothing, but felt like I would keep at it, to keep my supply up and to add to the freezer stash...so she would get at least one breastmilk bottle during the day.

The past 2 mornings I haven't been able to nurse her in the morning, so I pumped instead......I got 1 lousy ounce. I had thought that she was getting a whole lot more....like 4-5 ounces during that session. But today when I pumped that little bity ounce.....I realized that she is just using me as a big pacifier, and not really eating anything in the morning. This was clue #3.....and the final one.

All the pumping I am doing is not worth it for the grand total of 4 ounces I am getting per day! I am just giving in....I will still offer her the breast, but more for comfort.....not for nutrition. We will give her what breastmilk we have in the freezer, and the rest...all formula.

I have mixed emotions....on one hand, formula is not bad....it is a fine way to feed your baby....but I do know that breastmilk is better for baby, and I had hoped she would get at least a year (just like her sister) of some breastmilk.....but that is not what is happening, and that will have to be fine.....the important thing is that she is growing and is healthy!

This is one long post.....much more rambling than I thought it was going to be!!!!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

She's Crafty Like That!!!!

So, I try to be organized, I really do, but still there is still an amazing amount of paperwork that we have to keep track of.....and it is not just us. Mo has papers for school, permission slips, book orders, fundraisers, etc.......it is really too much.

We already had a family calendar that we used for meal planning that hung on our back door. Now the back door looks like this!!!!


We each get our own in box to corral the things that we need.



I made them out of clear wall mounted boxes. To make them pretty, I mod podged paper on them. I looked over the internet to makes sure I could do it on the clear plastic...turns out it looks ugly while you are doing it, but it dries just fine. I mounted them to the door using command sticky strips.

I have 2 issues with the final product.....first, they are spaced apart all funky. I didn't take into consideration the lock and door knob.

The other thing I didn't realize until the next day was, I can't open the drawer right next to it....the boxes stick out to far, and the drawer won't open. I have to open the door, then open the drawer. It isn't that big of a deal, since that drawer is hardly ever opened, but still......poor planning on my part!

Other than that, I am pretty happy with how everything turned out.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Portland's Got Talent

Mo has got on this singing kick lately. Since she was born, Scout has made up words to songs to entertain the both of us.....now Mo has taken it to the next level. She sings all the time.....as in, she has created her own little soundtrack to her life......she walks around and sings about what she is doing....."I'm brushing my teeth, yeah, yeah....

These 2 videos may be long, but oh so worth it.......we have been trying to get it on video for a while....here it is in all it's musical glory!!!!

Sometimes, she needs a bit of inspiration.....to get started.

video



For this one, I am secretly taping, the shaking in the middle, is me laughing. I couldn't help it.


video

Monday, January 2, 2012

Christmas, 2011

So, our Christmas was a bit low-key this year. We didn't have any out-of-town visitors, it was just the 4 of us this year. We were able to do some fun stuff, but really we kept it close to home. It was a very nice holiday.

Scout and I didn't do any presents for each other this year. We really couldn't think of anything we wanted. When we look at our 2 beautiful daughters, we know we have everything we could ever want. I think this holiday, we both felt so grateful for the good blessings that have come our way. Giving birth to the Bean this year after such a long time of trying to have a second baby, we know how lucky we are......our little family is complete. And also knowing that she healthy, and happy..........what more could we want?

How cute are these elves?





Every year, we make cookies on Christmas Eve...this year, we made the best ones yet....perfect cookie dough...not too sticky, rolled out easily. The icing was just stiff enough to stay on the cookies....and they tasted REALLY good......Santa really enjoyed them.

On Christmas morning, this is what the girls woke up to...not a bad haul.....


Mo got her Barbie Town House, which she has been asking for and wanting FOREVER.....

She also got a few other goodies, which made her heart sing...the only thing that her Mommies aren't too excited with is the Love's Baby Soft perfume which was in her sticking....we really should think these things out before we get them for her. Mo doesn't understand how much is "enough" when it comes to perfume. She believes "more is better."


Of course, Mo had to show the Bean how Christmas is done......notice the look of concentration of the babies face....she is really learning!



Santa was also good to the baby, she loves this little snail thing with a mirror on it.


All in all, a very nice holiday.