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Wednesday, February 27, 2013


I really have no idea if I even have any readers out there anymore.

Once life got busy for me, and routine-y, and I got a little (I mean a LOT) lazy I kind of just stopped blogging.  But I HAVE continued following everyone's else's blogs.

So here's an update: 

  • Ryan is going on 26 months on Sunday.  He is super smart (knows his colors, has a huge vocabulary, speaks in full sentences, knows lots of shapes, can count into the teens although he gets them mixed up sometimes, starting to sing the alphabet pretty accurately, starting to identify a few letters and numbers, etc) and a super funny/jokester like his daddy...  He's still small for his age at only around 24 pounds and I honestly don't know how many inches at this point.  Just yesterday he had surgery to have his adenoids removed and have tubes put back in his ears, which will hopefully reduce his ear/sinus infections and help him grow better (he's still able to fit most of his size 18 mo. pants!)
  • I went from 171 pounds (at 5'1" - yikes!) size 12 in April 2012 to 135 pounds size 6/8 in September 2012 mostly with the help of Weight Watchers (meetings & online).  I've been able to maintain at rougly between 135 and 138 since then but I feel myself creeping back up.  I am starting to eat better again and I can't wait until the warmer weather to go walking outside like I did last summer.  I'd love to get down to around 125 or fit into a size 4(ish).
  • We bought a HOUSE!  I think this should be higher up on this list but...this isn't necessarily in order of importance (even though Ryan is MOST important so he's right where he should be lol).  In October we closed on our first house and moved out of our apartment at the end of November.  It's so cool to say we're homeowners but the renovations have been expensive!!!!  Starting with a new roof for the house and garage, all new recessed lighting throughout the 1st floor living spaces and the basement, new boiler and new heating elements in the family room, new stove and dishwasher, and then all the "little" stuff like paiting and repaining this and that.  We're in the process of making the basement more of a livable space (painted the exposed ceiling, painted the walls, will soon be staining the concrete floor and putting up sheet rock around the boiler/hot water heater and laundry appliances) and then refinishing the deck and cleaning up the backyard...that should be fun!
  • I just celebrated my 5th anniversary at my job on Monday...yay me!
I think this is it for now.  I'll try to post updated pics soon. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Author recommendation

Maybe this author is already so popular that you know of her and it's just me that was in the dark but I just discovered Diane Chamberlain novels.  I read "Secret Lives" and "The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes".  Both were really well written and had really original story lines.  They did have some similar elements among them but with totally different plots.  I couldnt put them down.

DESCRIPTION: Actress Eden Riley's decision to make a film about her mother plunges her into a shattering confrontation with her own past, irrevocably altering her life and the lives of those she loves. Her mother, Katherine Swift, was a renowned children's author who died when Eden was very young. Now Eden, recovering from a divorce and disillusioned with her glamorous life, returns to the childhood home of the mother she barely knew. She moves in with her uncle, archaeologist Kyle Swift and his wife, Louise.
Eden gets more than she bargained for when Kyle gives her the journal her mother had kept from the age of thirteen until her death. Eden is spellbound by the powerfully written, intimate diary that chronicles a life of hardship, madness and tragedy. But her fascination turns to horror when she discovers the shocking truth about her mother's life.
Eden turns for comfort to Ben Alexander, Kyle's colleague, not knowing that Ben has a secret of his own that could ruin Eden and her career. Now Eden must make a heartbreaking decision as she struggles to lay the ghosts of the past to rest and come to terms with her own future.

DESCRIPTION:  In 1977, pregnant Genevieve Russell disappeared. Twenty years later, her remains are discovered and Timothy Gleason is charged with murder. But there is no sign of the unborn child.
CeeCee Wilkes knows how Genevieve Russell died, because she was there. And she knows what happened to her missing infant, because two decades ago she made the devastating choice to raise the baby as her own. Now Timothy Gleason is facing the death penalty, and she has another choice to make. Tell the truth and destroy her family or let an innocent man die in order to protect a lifetime of lies.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

We're still here :-/

Well....where do I begin?

I can't believe I haven't posted in 6+ months.  I am a terrible blogger, I admit.  I wish I was better at this but I'm just not.  I do, however, often visit and catch up on the blogs I follow. 

Maybe I'll start with some pictures...who doesn't love to see pictures?

 This was taken last weekend.  Ryan loves wearing his sunglasses outside.

 Close up!

 This was actually taken 4 months ago when Ryan started a new class in day care called the Froggy room.  This set up is inside his actual room.  They sleep on cots.

 This was maybe a month ago.  My Sister-in-law was staying in a nearby hotel and we went to crash their pool lol...


 Loving his ice cream...it's just his size!

 Funny face!

 I love his day care.  They have a petting zoo set up in their parking lot every year.  Ryan was so cute...he wanted to pet everything he could see.  Small cows, goats, rabbits, etc.

 Playing in a box at home lol


So here are some quick updates:

Mostly everything is "same ol', same ol'" with me except that I've lost 26 pounds.  I've been on Weight Watchers since mid April.  It's been really great.  I've begun to walk a few miles through my town for exercise and I've been watching what I eat.

Hubby has been "same ol', same ol" except for 2 things: he has lost 45+ pounds and he had knee surgery recently.  He will be back to work in about a week.  He works from home most of the time though which is good.

As for Ryan, of course, so much has changed.  He says over 50 words now and 6 sentences, including "Ohhhhh nnnnnnnooooo!" which is among my favorite.  He's been really low on the weight percentiles (hovering around 3%-5%) but we're not worried.  We were for a little while there because he was actually dropping off her curve but he's stabilizing now and still growing.  He bit 2 kids in day care in the last week which is "not nice!".  They squirt lemon juice into his mouth when he does it so I think he's understanding that it's not a desirable thing to do.  "Not nice" is another sentence he says lol.  No signs of being ready for the potty or a toddler bed which is just fine with us.  He is pretty consistently having ear and sinus infections.  He got ear tubes placed months ago but he's had one ear infection and one sinus infection since then.  He does have enlarged adenoids but he's too young for surgery still.  I think we're going to take him back to the ENT soon.  Maybe get a second opinion about his issues.  i wonder if the adenoids are contributing to his slow weight gain.  He's only 21 pounds at 18 months old and 31" tall but he looks really healthy, happy, and eats pretty well.

As for our family in general, a BIG update is that we are planning on buying a house before the end of the year and then starting to try to conceive baby #2 next summer.  So wish us luck!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Pictures of Ryan on Christmas Morning

To make up for the novel of a post I just published, I thought I'd post pictures of Ryan on Christmas morning. Who doesn't love pictures in posts...of babies?!

Sleep associations and setting routines

I've been reading the Ferber sleep training book for a few weeks now on and off...well, mostly off since I have a TODDLER (yes he walks now!) to chase after and after finally getting settled in bed at night to read, I pass out cold from exhaustion. But so far I've learned the importance and benefit of setting a bedtime routine for Ryan. I already knew that a routine would be ideal but I didn't realize how beneficial it might be for actually getting Ryan to fall asleep and stay asleep the way we wanted him to.

We've helped develop a bad habit over time and now I feel it's time to address it. This has been the routine at my house for a couple of months now:

  • I get home with Ryan around 6:15pm-6:20pm

  • We will then usually give him a snack at the dinner table while we're eating dinner or doing some other chore around the house like running the dishwasher, unpacking his day care bag, hand scrubbing stains out of his clothes, etc.

  • We let him play in the living room for the bulk of the evening, we read books to him, etc all while the TV is on in the background set to the Sprout channel.

  • At some point anywhere between 6pm (when hubbs picks him up early from day care) to past 8pm we will give him a bath. Sometimes my husband will do this in the kitchen sink and sometimes I bathe him in his inflatable tub in the bathroom which allows him to play more and for longer. Hubbs' knees are bad so he has trouble kneeling in the bathroom for bathtime.

  • Ryan will get a bottle usually around 8pm-8:30pm. Sometimes he will fall asleep in our arms while we give him the bottle and then we pop the pacifier in his mouth and carry him off to his crib. Sometimes we give him the bottle so he can drink it on his own in this little baby couch thing that we bought him. If we do that, then he will get back up afterwards and keep playing.

  • Usually around 8-8:30pm we will shut the light off in the living room and leave the TV on Sprout and let Ryan play and watch TV until he gets cranky. Then hubbs will put Ryan on his lap on the couch, pop the paci in and hold him until he falls asleep. Then one of us carries him to his crib.

  • For the past , oh, I'd say...2 months maybe, Ryan will wake up crying in his crib anytime between 1am and 5am. He always ends up standing up facing his door and crying out for "mamamamamamama".

  • One of us will then go get him and bring him into our bed for the rest of the night and he passes right out.
This is bad. Very. It's gotten harder and harder to sleep at night with him in the bed and I am sure his sleep is suffering too.

We (mostly me) are planning on starting sleep training in a couple of weeks after we move to a new apartment (long story). So last night I tried a little pre-sleep training experiment. This is how it went...

  • Got home at the usual time

  • Snacks at the dinner table

  • Play in the living room

  • At 8pm, I gave him a bath

  • Right after his bath (around 8:20pm) I lotioned him up, fresh diaper, and PJs. During the bath I asked hubbs to set a lullaby CD to play in his room.

  • I closed the door to his room and sat on the floor with him to read books. His TV was set on the Sprout channel with the volume turned low so that we could hear the music. I read several books to him since he loves books and some he wanted me to read over and over.

  • Around 8:35-8:40pm, I had hubbs bring in his bottle which I showed to him to see if he'd want it. He took the initiative and drank from him which sitting on the floor on and off. A couple of times I had to remind him of the bottle and he'd drink a little more. During this time he quietly played with his books turning pages and pointing to characters and animals in the book.

  • Then unfortunately, he wanted to open a drawer and dump out all of the contents which I let him do once since it was only sheets and blankets and everything stayed folded as he pulled them out (don't know if that's bad or not).

  • After I put everything back in, I put him in his crib and turned off the light but the TV stayed on very low. He whined immediately and wanted to get out but I stayed close tot he crib and soothed him. Hubbs came in as well to reassure him and he quieted down a bit. I gave him the bottle again and he sat in his crib to drink the rest.

  • I found a lovey that he never ever used or even played with because we had it displayed on his dresser and I gave that to him. He hugged the lovey a few times so I left it in his crib. I also turned on his ceiling projector which plays soft music.

  • After a couple minutes of soothing words and patting/rubbing his back while he sat there and whined a little, I walked out and closed his door.

  • We have a video monitor so I watched him start to cry and stand up, call out to us, etc. He mostly whined and babbled but he did cry a little. I waited for a solid cry which is when I was planning to go in to soothe him but he never really cried for more than 10-15 seconds straight so I didn't go in at all. After about I'd say 10 minutes or so, Ryan was out like a light.

  • I went in and turned the TV off and that was it.


  • At 4am he woke up whining and crying but when I checked the moitor, he wasn't standing up in his crib, which was his norm. He was still lying down. I could tell he didn't have his pacifier in his mouth and I figured it must be tangled in his blanket.

  • I waited a couple of minutes while he cried and then went in to find his pacifer for him and soothe him. As soon as I walked in he stood up so I hugged him while still leaving him in his crib standing and spoke to him softly "Ryan, you're ok baby. You can go back to sleep now. Mommy's here. I love you.", Etc. I rubbed his back a little as he calmed down a bit. I showed him his new lovey and kissed him.

  • I walked out while he was still standing in his crib and he started to whine and cry out again.

  • I checked the monitor as he whined for about a minute more but he had sat and then layed back down so i saw that as a good sign.

  • He did fall back to sleep but woke up to whine and cry out again 2 more times before 5am but not enough for me to go in and soothe him and by 5am he was asleep and didn't wake up again until past 8:30am! I even left him there and told my husband to take him to day care this morning (I usually take him in).

Eventually, I want to get to a place where we won't turn on the TV in his room at night at all and I really hope that we can take his paci away completely very soon. He's really good without it during the day, but at nap time he seems to need it.

This was just a test but I got some sleep last night!! Then hubbs calls me this morning to tell me that Ryan's 2 top teeth have broken through and that must be the reason he slept through the night well because they finally broke through and he must have been more comfy. This can't be the reason!!

Oh well...I think the new routine went really well for it being the first time so I think we will keep it going. Hopefully it will all work out!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Monday, August 15, 2011

Crawling, standing, eating, teething...swinging!

This is a picture of Ryan from last Sunday (the 7th) at our local park...it's his first time on a swing and he really enjoyed himself. Look at that big smile!

In just the past couple of weeks, so much has occured. He's now crawling really well and has added a new skill. He wants to climb on everything and he pulls himself to a standing position. This weekend we went to a BBQ so we put him in the pack n play with a few toys. In no time he was showing off his new skill. He would pull himself up, then sit back down, pull himself up, then back down...over and over.

He also started saying "mamamamamama"...you know I love that!

Since my last post, I have tried to organize the freezer twice and although slightly better, it still really needs an overhaul. I thought I had larger rectangular tupperware but I actually don't. I ended up putting some things in a larger round bowl and then other stuff in smaller square tupperware. It's not perfect but it's better. It doesn't help that hubbs bought a box of 48 popsicles this weekend.

I did also make him some additional foods: pork, beef, turkey, chick peas, lentils, pasta, and brown rice. So far, he's liked them all! I made the meats seperately in a pressure cooker with some unslated beef/veggie/chicken stock that I purchased from the supermarket. I've realized that the turkey doesn't need as much water as the pork and beef during the puree process...turkey ended up a little watery so I added some baby oatmeal to thicken it up. The brown rice was hard to puree at first because I didn't realize how much water is needed for that. It kept having this really sticky quality to it but eventually it all worked out.

My little koala bear is teething in full force now. Poor baby is also congested so that sucks as well. His pain cry is so much different than any other cry it's heartbreaking. Humphrey's pellets have really been helpful but we're also going to try an amber teething necklace. It's supposed to arrive today and I hope it works. I am a little nervous about putting it on him for night time but I will have to see when it comes how it fits him.

Anyone out there try an amber teething necklace? I will give an update after we try it.