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what

March 21, 2014

I loved the “what” post that Caitlin did a few weeks ago so I thought I would do it too.

What I’m Wearing:

I feel like I am one of those people who either looks put together or looks like a complete slob. Picture below (obviously the one on the left was taken pre-hair cut a couple of weeks ago) I am in my work clothes (jean dress from Old Navy and boots from Nordstom) and then on the right is me at home completely not matching in my boxers and beloved red sweater that my husband hates with a passion. Clearly I need to find some middle ground. Ha!

wearing

What I’m Loving:

Face Time! Like I’ve told you guys, I leave for work before Trey wakes up so Keith Face Times every morning usually around 7:45 after our morning announcements. The kids love it! When the phone rings they all start whispering, “Baby Trey is calling!” It’s cute and I always let the kids say hi. The whole call lasts maybe 5 minutes but it is the best thing getting to see my little man in the morning even if it is over a screen.

facetime

What I’m Eating:

This was a random day of eats one day earlier this week. Obviously not in order either. Heh, I was too lazy to fix the picture.  Salad beast for lunch with chicken and olive oil and red wine vinegar for my dressing, breakfast was 2 eggs over easy on top of toast with strawberry jelly and coffee, snack was a flaxseed paleo muffin (I posted the recipe on Instagram) and an almond butter pack (am I the only one who just squeezes those into my mouth?? So good!) And Dinner…well no dinner picture happened. I blame it on the fact that usually dinner is made and eaten with one hand while I hold Trey. Hence no hands for a picture.

food

What I’m Needing:

A vacation. Preferably one that includes a bathing suit and a beach. We are taking Trey to the beach for the first time this summer and I can not wait! We are beach people in my house. Always have been. I love to be at the beach. I love the sound of the waves and their repetitive roll, I love the sound of the seagulls overhead, I love the smell of the salty damp air, and I love the feeling of the sand in my toes. I’m ready!

Me and Keith in Hawaii on our baby moon when I was 20 weeks pregnant. So I guess technically Trey has already been to the beach! 🙂

Hawaii

What I’m Going to Miss:

These snuggly moments where Trey falls asleep (milk drunk) in my arms. Time goes so fast (he will be 5 months next week!) and I know before I know it these moments will be gone. It already makes me sad. 😦

milkdrunk

What I’m Reading:

book

One and Only by Lauren Sandler. I just ordered this. Here’s the synopsis I pulled off Amazon:

“A humorous, tough-minded, and honest case for being and having an only child . Journalist Lauren Sandler is an only child and the mother of one. After investigating what only children are really like and whether stopping at one child is an answer to reconciling motherhood and modernity, she learned a lot about herself—and a lot about our culture’s assumptions. She brings a passion and a laser-sharp intelligence to the subject that cuts through the anxiety, doubt, misinformation, and judgment about what it means to be an only child and what it means to have one. In this heartfelt work, Sandler legitimizes a conversation about the larger societal costs of having more than one. If parents no longer felt they had to have second children to keep from royally screwing up their first, would the majority of them still do it? And if the literature tells us that a child isn’t better off with a sibling than without one, and it’s not something parents truly want for themselves, then whom is this choice serving? One and Only examines these questions, exploring what the rise of the single-child family means for our economies, our environment, and our freedom. Through this journey, Sandler has quite possibly cracked the code of happiness, demonstrating that having just one may be the way to resolve our countless struggles with adulthood in the modern age.”

Here’s the thing: If Keith and I are going to have more children then we basically need to start trying again pretty soon. Keith is turning 44 this month and I’m turning 33 in April. I don’t feel my clock ticking but he feels like his is. He wants us to conceive before he turns 45. So that would mean sometime in this next year I need to get pregnant. That’s a big pill for me to swallow right now and after all the trouble we had conceiving with Trey (um..it took 3 years!) who knows if that is even possible. Ideally I’d like another child and we’ve decided to not start trying until October when Trey is 1. But you never know…so I’m reading this book. 🙂

What I’m Grateful For:

Them: Keith, Trey and Bella peeking in the background. 🙂

Thefamily

What I’m Moving: 

I did this workout the other morning. It was quick and effective. Give it a go.

workout

 

Your turn! Any “whats” you’d like to share?

Happy (almost) Weekend!

spring breaking

March 18, 2014

Like I mentioned yesterday in my cry it out post, I was on Spring Break last week! It was glorious. The weather was nice, I got some things scratched off my to-do list, I got some great quality Trey/Mommy time, and we also conquered some major parenting milestones. All in all it was the perfect week. 🙂

First up, I got my hair cut! I have been in a cutting mode lately. Since Trey was born I have cut 9 inches off! I got 5 inches cut off the day I went into labor (good timing!) and then I cut another 4 inches last week. I like my hair long but it is just too hot in the Texas summer for long hair AND Trey is quite the hair puller. I also got it colored. I finally caved. Standing in front of the mirror each night plucking out my gray hairs with eyebrow tweezers was just getting old. Ha! When did I get old enough to have gray hair?! 😦 But I asked my hair lady to match my color the best she could because I am a low maintenance hair girl and the idea of a major upkeep job was just not for me.

HairCut

Another awesome big Trey moment is he is really starting to like both his carseat and stroller. What?! I was convinced my kid was never going to like either but this past week we turned a corner and he actually seemed to like both! Fingers crossed! I was so confident in his newfound carseat skills that I actually took him grocery shopping! For those of you who know me in real life you know this a huge deal for me. I am ALWAYS so scared of being that mom who has a screaming child in public (I know I need to get over that and I’m trying) but Trey did great! I stuck him in the basket still strapped in the car seat and he was in awe. Just looking around and taking it all in. This made for a happy mama! We celebrated that night by taking an evening stroller ride in which he seemed to also enjoy!

TreyStoller

A very special moment for my family over Spring Break was taking Trey to meet our fertility specialist, Dr. Silverberg. (For those of you in the Austin area he is affiliated with Texas Fertility Center and he is amazing! He is the kindest doctor with an incredible bedside manner). Without the help of Dr. Silverberg Trey wouldn’t be here with us. I was so happy we got a chance to go back and visit. It was very emotional for me and I still can’t look at the picture below without tearing up a little. For those interested in our pregnancy journey you can read it here. 

Trey also went on his first play date to meet new friend Isaac! I didn’t snap any pictures (dang it) but it was fun. Isaac is about 6 weeks younger than Trey and I hope they have many more play dates in their future. Of course it didn’t hurt that mommy got to see her friend Sarah! 🙂 I think at this stage connecting with other new moms that have children around the same age as Trey is huge! It makes you feel not so crazy when you realize other people know exactly what you are experiencing/feeling.

Keith and I were feeling so good about Trey’s good public behavior that we decided on Saturday to take him out to eat. GAH!! I was nervous but excited. The freedom to know that I could take Trey to the grocery store and out to eat was almost too good to be true. I was game to try. Plus I know that the only way that Trey and I are going to be comfortable in public is by going out into the world more. And with summer coming up, I plan to do just that! So we loaded up and out to eat we went for lunch on Saturday afternoon. Trey was SUPER! He stayed in his car seat through the meal and then I pulled him into my lap towards the end while Keith finished his food.

outtoeat

I totally have something stuck on my teeth. Ha! Figures! 🙂 

The rest of the week was spent just hanging out and playing. I made a bunch of Pinterest recipes I pinned and just relaxed with my little man. I took lots of pictures and as evidenced by Trey’s face below he was probably like enough of the camera mom! What can I say I’m a little in love with my guy. I have taken 813 pictures of him (according to my iPhone) since he was born.

treyface

We also spent a lot of time outside. Trey is an outside boy and that’s fine with mommy and daddy. We love being outside so it’s good to know our child follows suit. 🙂 Such a big boy!

outside

And that was Spring Break. Fun, fun and more fun! A taste of summer…although I wish the weather would stay the same. I am so not looking forward to the 100+ degree heat we will have for months on end. Ugh. Just thinking about it makes me cringe.

Do you still get a Spring Break?

If you are a parent, how do you handle the public screaming fits? (I know they are bound to happen so I am trying to be prepared!) 

cry it out

March 17, 2014

Happy Monday! I am back to work today after a glorious week off for Spring Break. It was heaven. I loved loved loved spending time with my little man and was a little teary eyed driving to work this morning. I got a taste of what summer will be like and I can not wait! 🙂 I will do a post on my Spring Breaking happenings later this week but I wanted to first update you on our experience with Cry It Out (CIO, Ferber Method).

When Trey was born he had such bad day/night reversal that we were desperate to do anything that would set his circadian rhythm and buy us some sleep. I had read time and time again that you can not form lasting habits in the first 3 months of life and to do whatever we needed to do to get some rest. We found that cure in the bouncer. Trey began sleeping in his bouncer swaddled in the Miracle Blanket swaddle. (Best swaddle ever in my opinion!) It worked for us. Trey started sleeping through the night at around 9 weeks of age and although he was not a good napper as long as I was getting uninterrupted sleep at night it didn’t matter to me. Pick your battles, right? The only problem was we were rocking him to sleep each night in the bouncer and he definitely associated his bouncer with sleep. Since Trey was 4 months (and 1 week) when Spring Break started we decided this was the perfect time to transition him into the crib. That way if he didn’t transition well and woke up a bunch at night I was at least on a break from work.

To say we were nervous about the transition is an understatement. As I am sure any parent will tell you, once your child starts sleeping through the night the biggest fear is that they will suddenly stop. And I learned that a sleep deprived Kelly is one bitchy Kelly. Let me tell you. Ha! But we knew that we needed to make the transition because I for one did not want to be that mom whose child still had sleep crutches at the age of two. And our night time routine was just taking too long. Each night we’d bathe him, feed him, swaddle him and spend 30 minutes rocking him to sleep. The whole thing was taking us an hour and half each night. I also had a lot of anxiety about him sleeping in the bouncer. I was always nervous he was going to get himself turned in it so he couldn’t breathe. So it was time.

Cry It Out was the method we chose simply because we wanted Trey to realize that he could put himself to sleep. He could self soothe and do it all on his own. Also everyone said it was a 3-10 day transition. I understand that not everyone feels that way. But here was the plan we devised. (And believe me you need to have a plan in place before starting!!)

CIO in a nutshell: follow your normal nighttime routine, put them into the crib awake, walk out of the room, if they start crying follow the steps below. When in the room, do not pick them up, soothe them for a minute or two (at most), leave the room while they are still awake. Repeat until the child falls asleep.

Our plan:

  • Night 1: Leave for 3 minutes the first time,  5 minutes the second time, and then 10 minutes for the third and all subsequent times.
  • Night 2: leave for 5 minutes, then 10 minutes, then 12 minutes
  • Night 3 (and from there on out): Leave for 6 minutes, then 12 minutes, then 15 minutes

We also decided to keep Trey swaddled because we knew he associated the swaddle with sleep and thought it would help the transition.

Night 1:

We did our normal night time routine, put Trey in the crib and left the room at around 7:30. From 7:30-9:00 he played in his crib; looked around his new place, busted out of his swaddle, didn’t cry at all. At 9:00 he decided he had enough and was ready for bed AKA his bouncer. He started crying. We waited the 3 minutes, went in, reswaddled him and walked out, repeated steps above for Night 1. It took until 11:45 for him to fall asleep. It was a rough night. But once he was asleep he was asleep for good and he slept until about 7:00 the next morning and when he woke up I found him like this:

TreyCIO

Night 2:

We decided to go ahead and transition him into a sleep sack as well. I was worried that with him busting out of the swaddle (see picture above) that he’d get it wrapped around his neck. Because he’s a mover…very rarely did he wake up in any position remotely like how we put him down. So night two he went into the sleep sack and he fell asleep after the second round of crying. He slept through the night. However, we didn’t know if CIO was working or if he was just so worn out from the night before that he went right down.

Night 3:

He went down before the first round timer went off. He slept through the night. 🙂 We were pumped! I had assumed he needed the swaddle to sleep, both as a comfort and as something he associated with sleep. But I was wrong. He was definitely ready for the sleep sack.

Now: he is great! He usually falls asleep sometime within the first 6 minutes with minimal fussing and he sleeps through the night in his sleep sack! (We use the Halo ones…size small right now) I am so thankful the transition seems to be over for him!! Also our bedtime routine is much shorter now! Nap time is a little more difficult since he isn’t a great napper and never has been. It is hit or miss if we have to go in after 6 minutes but we typically don’t have to go in there twice. Although, Trey’s naps are only about 30-45 minutes in length (three times a day). But the same is true as before, I’d rather have a child who sleeps through the night and isn’t a good napper versus having a good napper and child who wakes up in the middle of the night.

We did have one night where he woke up at 2:30a.m. (this was later in the week though) and we did CIO in the middle of the night because we were not going to teach him that we would pick him up if he cried (at any time). We had to do CIO from 2:30 until 4:20. It was AGONY and we almost caved in. But we made it and the next night he was back to sleeping all the way through again. I firmly believe that children need to learn that they can calm themselves when nothing is wrong. (If they are sick, teething or going through a growth spurt,etc I think that’s different) Now I won’t say that this week was easy and there were lots of text messages to Allena (my baby mentor…ha!) and my mom but we made it. And I can say that we (Keith, myself and Trey) are much happier for it.

Cry It Out success!!

TreyCIO2

If you are a mom, did you use the Cry It Out method? How did it work for you? 

Or did you use something else with success? 

update: bella edition

March 5, 2014

Before I had Trey people would tell me all the time that Bella was going to take a back seat in my life once he was born. That used to make me so mad! I wrote this post saying how it was not going to happen. 

A quick recap for those of you who don’t know but Bella was a rescue dog. The second time I was pregnant Keith and I had gone in for our 10 week appointment and there was no heartbeat. I couldn’t believe this was happening to me again. I was literally at the lowest of lows in my life. The next day I looked at Keith and told him I needed a dog. I needed something to mother. So the day before my D&C we went to the animal shelter and picked Bella. She was perfect. 

She saved me. She gave me new hope and meaning. I mothered her. I loved her. She became my little savior. I know I would have eventually been okay but she helped me to heal. Helped me to grieve and helped me to see that life, although sometimes unfair, was still beautiful. 

So when I got pregnant the third time and we made it past the first trimester everyone started commenting on how Bella was going to be second in my life. I could not fathom it. So here’s my update on life with Trey and Bella. 

First, it makes my heart sing that Bella is going to be Trey’s first best friend. I can’t wait for them to start playing with each other. Right now they are both still very curious. Bella is more interested in any leftover formula Trey has on his body so she can lick it up and Trey just lets her. Neither is scared of the other and I’m so glad that Trey will grow up around dogs. And a big dog at that! (Bella is 80 pound of love!) 

bellandtrey2

Before Trey, Bella would sleep in our bed every night, get a least 2 walks a day (one for over an hour each night), go to daycare 3-4 days a week while we were at work, and go to the dog park every weekend! She had a sweet life! Now, her life has definitely changed. She doesn’t sleep in our bed anymore (but that’s because she would rather sleep in Trey’s room…my heart explodes just typing that sentence), she only goes to day care 1-2 days a week, and her evening walk has shortened from an hour to more like 30 minutes. She still goes to the dog park on the weekends although we don’t stay for hours like we did before. In short she’s not our only child anymore. ha! 

The adjustment has been hard on her. Those first few months she was definitely depressed. I also was so focused on Trey and being a new mommy that she got very little attention from me. It was obviously unintentional but it happened nonetheless. Now I try very hard to still make her feel special. I try to love on her as often as I can. I try to let her know that there is room in my heart for her and Trey both. But it’s been an adjustment for us all. She definitely is not the only one in our lives anymore. 

I don’t think all those people were right per say. I don’t think Bella is less important to me now. I think my friend, Belle, hit the nail on the head when she told me that the love I feel for Bella and Trey would be different. She was right. They both have very special yet very different places in my heart. They mean different things to me. Obviously Trey is my child and Bella is my pet…so things did change. Bella is not my number one focus anymore. But I don’t love her any less. I am not any less grateful for the role she plays in my life. She’s my Bella and I will always love her to pieces. And I squeal just thinking about her and Trey being BFF’s. 

BellaandTrey1

 

fitting it all in

March 3, 2014

Being a new mom changes your routine. Being a working mom changes your routine. I frequently ask myself how did I think I was so busy before? Now that Trey is 4 months old I can say that Keith and I have fallen into a fairly predictable routine. I thought I would give you guys a peek into my life as a working mom and how I manage to fit it all in.

Monday through Friday my schedule pretty much looks like this every day:

  • 4:20: Wake Up
  • 4:30-5:15: Work Out (here is where having a home gym is a LIFE SAVER!)
  • 5:15-6:10: Get ready for work and eat breakfast (take care of Bella: take her out, feed her, etc.)
  • 6:15: Leave for work
  • 6:30-3:30: Working (Our nanny comes at 8:15 each morning)
  • 3:45 – 6:15: Mama and Trey time!!
  • 6:15: Keith gets home from work, we eat dinner and Keith plays with Trey
  • 7:00: Trey’s bedtime routine starts (let him play naked on his changing pad for about 15 minutes, he gets a bath and then he eats his nighttime bottle before going to bed between 7:45-8:00)
  • 8:00-9:30: Hang with Keith, take a shower, get my lunch ready for the next day. I’m usually asleep by 9:30.

A few things to point out. First, I am incredibly lucky that we have a home gym. I am one of those people that isn’t going to work out at night so I have to do it in the morning. If I had to actually drive to a gym I don’t think I would so this is ideal for me. Second, I am also incredibly lucky that Keith doesn’t have to go to work until 9:00a.m so he does Trey duty every morning. Plus we have a nanny that comes to our house so we don’t have to worry about adding in a “getting ready for daycare routine” in there. Third, I am incredibly lucky that Trey sleeps through the night. He typically doesn’t wake up until 6:30/7:00 in the morning. But on the mornings when he does wake up while I am still home Keith takes care of it. In case you haven’t gotten it I feel incredibly lucky. 🙂 I definitely could not fit everything in without Keith. He is like the daddy/husband of the year! 🙂 I will say the hardest part is not seeing Trey before I go to work since he is typically still asleep but Keith Face Times me and that helps a ton.

I know I start my days SUPER early but I am a morning person. Always have been. In fact before Trey was born I used to work out at 4:30 before work too. So this is my normal. I get that most people think I am insane but I function really well in the morning. I am not a night owl. If I am ever up past 9:30 (even on the weekends) you should probably assume hell froze over. Ha! I am not a night person and really never have been. Ask my college roommates and they will tell you I was always the first one to call it a night.

On the weekends it’s different. Saturday mornings I go to the gym for Body Pump class at 9:00 and on Sundays I don’t workout at all so I typically sleep until Trey wakes up and I do the morning feedings on Saturday and Sunday and let Keith sleep in. It’s what works for us. And until Trey switches things up on us (which is bound to happen although I am DREADING it) this is how we will roll. 🙂

MommyandTrey

And just because I think this picture is awesome: Keith was working on our taxes this weekend and Trey was “helping”…ha! I wanted to say, “trust me buddy, my eyes get that big when working on taxes too.” 🙂

TreyandDaddy

So there you have it…my working mom schedule. If you are a mom (SAHM or Working) what’s your schedule? I love knowing how others fit it all in too!

4 months looks good on you

February 28, 2014

Well look who turned 4 months on February 27th?

4months

Life could not be any sweeter! We love you Baby Trey!

the enigma that is school lunch

February 26, 2014

For those of you who don’t know (hi new readers!!!) I’m an elementary school teacher. 2nd grade. I feel that I’m lucky because I can honestly say that I am one of those people who goes to work everyday and really enjoys her job. Some days more than others (ha) but as a whole I truly love what I do.

But.

Let me tell you for one stinkin minute what drives me crazy about my job. SCHOOL LUNCHES! For real, if you saw what comes out of the cafeteria and is passed off as a healthy balanced meal you would die. Or at least be very appalled. Here is what is listed on our school menu (written just as it is given to parents):

  • Chicken Fried Steak w/ Roll (WG)
  • Cheese Quesadilla (V)
  • Southwest Chicken Salad w/Crackers
  • Mashed Potatoes w/ Country Gravy
  • Mixed Peas & Carrots
  • Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Bar

Any guesses on what WG stands for? Um…it says the roll is Whole Grain and that V? Vegetarian. Let’s just say that if Trey is a vegetarian I sure hope he eats something better than a tortilla with a microwaved kraft cheese slice stuck between it.

Also, gone are the days where a cafeteria lady hands you a tray. No, now it’s about allowing the child to choose. Need I remind anyone that these children are 7. SEVEN!!!! They don’t need to be making those choices. Because let’s be real…what 7 year old chooses to put the peas and carrots on their plate. The “rule” is that the child can’t leave the lunch line without a main entree, a fruit, and vegetable on their plate. But they have a fruit and vegetable bar to choose from. So I’ve seen children  walk out of line with a piece of chicken fried steak with gravy, a roll, 2 cucumber slices and an apple juice.  The apple juice counts as the fruit and those 2 cucumber slices count as the vegetable.

Wait, Wait it gets even better!

We also now have something called snack privileges. Which means if your parents give you extra money in your lunch account you can buy snacks with your lunch. These include: full size ice cream treats (bomb pops, ice cream sandwiches, drumsticks, etc.), bags of chips, cookies, cinnamon rolls, fig newtons, etc. There is also no limit to how many snacks you can buy as long as you have the necessary funds.

So remember that lunch above? Now add a bag of Cheetos and an ice cream sandwich to it.

Disgusted yet? You should be.

It is awful what the kids eat for lunch every day. It makes me so angry. I feel like we have a responsibility to teach children good eating habits at a young age. Look at our society?! Does anyone really think the obesity crisis in this country is getting any better? We should be starting at the youngest of ages. Teaching it from the ground up when habits aren’t yet set in stone and hard to break. We aren’t doing these kids any favors by allowing them to choose their own nutritional needs at the age of 7. They aren’t mature enough to do that. We need to do it FOR them and that’s okay. These kids aren’t going to be scarred because they didn’t get to choose their own lunch in elementary school.

I know Michelle Obama has put a lot of effort into her Let’s Move Campaign and attacking childhood obesity has been a huge priority for her. But until we get the ridiculousness of school lunches under control and people really start taking the obesity crisis seriously in this country nothing is going to change.