Saturday, September 29, 2012

Katie Chores

I think Katie is old enough for some chores. She just started deciding she needed to make her bed (yes, on her own) over the last week. She also helps load the washer and dryer, starts the dishwasher, feeds Sadie, puts her dirty clothes in the hamper, puts her dirty dishes in the sink, and will clean the table and sweep the floor. My mom has been saying that I should do a star chart with her each week...I had one when I was little and did very well with it. Since Katie acts just like I did as a wee one, I think my mom may be onto something. If you have a 3 or 4 year old, what are some chores they so around the house? I'm thinking the ones I listed above are a good starting point but am interested to hear some more ideas!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Changing Too Fast

Look at that cutie pie!  This little guy is so close to rolling over!  On his back, he gets over to his side, and when he's on his belly, he pushes that leg up!  Once he gets his whole body coordinated, he will be over (and scared)!  And he has found his toes - he LOVES to play with his feet!  Today, he had one hand on his foot and the other hand in his mouth just making some of the sweetest, happiest noises!  And I have been putting him in the Bumbo a little more frequently - I think he enjoys sitting up and having toys in front of him!  He loved playing with Sophie the Giraffe!  He really needs to slow it down with this whole growing and changing stuff!


Thursday, September 27, 2012

Feeding the Ducks

A couple of weeks ago, I found some bread that was pretty stale, so I decided a trip to feed the ducks was in order!  There is a park that is a pretty well-known attraction in Nashville that has a lake with ducks.  I used to go there when I was little to feed the ducks, so it is pretty neat to take Katie there now.  I think the ducks there have it made - they weren't even interested in the bread Katie was throwing out for them!  They must have had full bellies.  But Katie had fun - and she kept saying, "Here Ducky, Ducky, Ducky!!!"

Here she is tearing bread and throwing it into the pond.
 She also liked looking at the flowers and yelling at squirrels - it was hilarious!
 And a pretty picture of The Parthenon.
Going there kind of makes me want to let our bread go bad so I can take Katie back :)


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Jack's Dedication

On September 16, we had Jack dedicated at church.  It was a great service (there were probably about 14-15 babies dedicated) and had a very personal touch.  When Katie was dedicated, all the families stood at the front.  Now, they have each family with the baby go stand up at the front while a pre-prepared paragraph is read and then a "life verse" is read by someone the family chooses.  And then there was a small reception for everybody afterwards.  It was so nice!  And after all that, we went to Chuy's for dinner - I hadn't been in a while and it was pretty tasty!

Here is my and my little man before the service - he was so happy! Thankfully he stayed that way the whole time :)
 And here is Brad with Jack.
 And we got a family shot at the front before the service started.
 A happy baby boy!
 Papa with dad read the life verse we selected during the service.  We thought it would be neat for his grandfather to read it :)
And this is the verse that he is definitely one of my favorites.
 Jack with Nanny and Papa...Katie wouldn't cooperate for a picture :)  She was in a funky mood that afternoon.
 Cee Cee with Jack!  I think this is a sweet picture!
And we got one with Cee Cee's eyes open! There is a specific setting on my camera that we have to use to catch her smiling and with her eyes open! :)
 We were the first ones to go to the front!  Here we are as the paragraph I put together was being read.  A woman from the children's ministry was praying over and for Jack.  After that, my dad read the verse. 
 And here is Jack with Tanja! He had fallen asleep, so he is kind of out of it in some of these pictures :)
 And Cat with Jack!  I love that some of our friends came!
 And here is Jack with Meme!
 And here he is with Ruth and Owen!
 And Jack with Uncle Will (and me, obviously)!
 Jack with the two grandmothers.  I took like 10 pictures and I think this was the best I could get between Jack crying and the two of them blinking or not smiling! ha!
 And Jack with Paulette and Darrell (Brad's aunt and uncle)!  They recently moved back from Texas - so glad!  My uncle on my mom's side and then an aunt and uncle on my dad's side were also there but I didn't get pictures with them in it!
 And Grandma with Jack - cute picture!
 Katie sort of cooperated for a picture by herself...I think she may have been overwhelmed with all of our family and friends together in one place - she is used to visiting with one or two or three at a time!  Plus it was during the afternoon when she usually has quiet time :)
 And one more family picture - love it!
 And last but not least, this sweet baby boy.  We borrowed the sweet outfit from some friends...I love it!
Such a special day!  And Jack got some sweet, thoughtful gifts to celebrate - a silver frame with his full name engraved, a pewter cup with a cross on it, a Bible with his name on it, an outfit, a toy, and lots and lots of love!

And I am super impressed if you are still with my on this post - sorry for the picture overload!  I am trying to play catch up :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

This Morning's View

I have been doing a pretty good job with exercising lately...I hope the trend will continue. This morning, after taking Katie to school, I went to a local park and walked on a path there. It was so peaceful and beautiful. The leaves are just beginning to change colors - I love this time of year!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Stranger Danger

As I mentioned not too long ago, I recently watching the Dateline special "My Child Would Never: Stranger Danger".  Wow.  What an eye opener.  It made me really wonder what Katie would do.  It also made me very aware of the fact that we need to start having these conversations, like, now.  That way it can start sinking in.  

On Today's Mom, there is an article related to that special I watched that also gives a few pointers.  That article can be found {here}.  I especially like the idea of having a "safe word" that only "safe people" know (close friends, family, etc), as well as having a "code" that a child texts or says when he or she is in danger. On the show, one of the people suggested teaching your child to look at people's eyes when talking to them. To tell them they need to be able to see what color people's eyes are when talking to them - that way they come across as confident, which can scare predators away.

I found another article that makes suggestions on ways to talk about this issue based on the age of your child.    This is what it says for preschool age children:
Preschool children normally have no fear, they are willing to say hello or talk to almost any adult they see. Although you don’t want to scare your younger children with the truth of abductions, you do want them to know how important it is that they stay safe. Start with a simple explanation, “there are really bad people who want to hurt children, therefore it’s very, very important that you never…”
  • Talk to strangers
  • Open the door when someone is knocking or ringing the bell
  • Leave mom’s side at the store or when we are somewhere outdoors.
  • Go outside without me or a trusted adult.
  • Go with a stranger who can’t find his dog, wants to give you candy, wants to show you something, wants to give you money, etc.
  • Approach a strange car, even if they know mom’s name or your name.
Keep the information simple, yet straightforward. If your children ask you questions be honest, of course age appropriate honesty. Go over simple tactics with your child should they be approached or feel unsafe in a certain situation, such as screaming or trying to get away from a stranger or other types of danger.
Main points to address:
  • Keep it simple, but straightforward.
  • Go over the main points (as emphasized above.)
  • Be honest with your children if they ask you questions.
  • Go over screaming and tactics to fight and get away from a stranger.

Another way I find it easy to start a conversation with Katie is to read a book and talk about what is going on in the story.  Here are a couple books I found on Amazon (and yes, I plan to purchase them - I will do a post once we receive them and I am able to sit down and read them with Katie).  On a sidenote, when I found these books, books on the topic of body parts being your own and that type of thing came up.  Whew - that is a whole other topic, but it is definitely important!!
Another article that some friends suggested I read gave this topic a different spin.  Is it more about "tricky people" instead of "strangers"?  That is a very true point made in this blog post.  This article quotes a child safety educator as saying, "Stop telling your kids not to talk to strangers. They might need to talk to a stranger one day. Instead, teach them which sorts of strangers are safe. You know who’s safe? A mom with kids. Period. Your kid gets separated from you at the mall? Tell her to flag down the first mom with kids she sees."  Interesting way of thinking about it, huh!  Here are a few additional points made in the article:
  • It is unlikely your kid is going to be abused by a weirdo at the park (huge sigh of relief).
  • That said, if there is a weirdo at the park, he’s not going to fit the “stranger” model — so stop teaching your kid about strangers! He’s going to come up to your kid and introduce himself. Voila! He ain’t a stranger anymore.
  • Teach your kids about TRICKY PEOPLE, instead. TRICKY PEOPLE are grown-ups who ASK KIDS FOR HELP (no adult needs to ask a kid for help) or TELLS KIDS TO KEEP A SECRET FROM THEIR PARENTS (including, IT’S OKAY TO COME OVER HERE BEHIND THIS TREE WITHOUT ASKING MOM FIRST. Not asking Mom is tantamount to KEEPING A SECRET.)
  • Teach your kids not to DO ANYTHING, or GO ANYWHERE, with ANY ADULTS AT ALL, unless they can ask for your permission first.
A couple more articles written on this topic can be found here and here.  Gosh - this parenting thing is hard.  There are so many topics that you want to make sure your kids have the best advice about.  Obviously trusting your gut instinct can take you very far.  But I want to do any and everything to make sure these two of mine stay safe and healthy.  And this is just a drop in the bucket (internet safety, bullying, body boundaries, sex, etc).  Please let me know if you have any other ideas!


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Whew!  I almost didn't get a chance to get this blog post done - but I made it :) I am going to do better and try to get back on the blogging bandwagon.  I have to admit that it has been nice taking a little bloggy break, but I do miss it.  Here's what I'm loving today!
 I'm LOVING this sweet guy and the fact that today is his birthday!! We had fun celebrating with family tonight - that cake is a really good reason to have a birthday.  YUM!
 I'm LOVING this fallish weather!  It is getting down in the 40s tonight - hooray!!  I love seeing this temperature in my car during the day!
 I'm LOVING this idea of a craft to do with kiddos!  This particular version is to create the candy corn color scheme, but I'd say any kind of buttons glued onto a pumpkin would be cute!  I know Katie would love to do this!
 I'm LOVING this creation.  Pure genius, I tell you!  I saw this at Target the other day and bought one (and ate it that afternoon).  It is amazing.  And made me want to eat a whole container of just Nutella.  Yum for sure.
 I'm LOVING Katie's All About Me poster I did for school this year.  I think it turned out pretty cute!  I had lots more pictures (including grandparents, etc), but it just wouldn't fit on the half poster size!  Love it though!
 I'm LOVING the new look.  Haircut + highlights + new glasses = fun!  I will do a before/after pic on my hair.  I  loved it long but man was it unhealthy!  It feels so much better now - and is nicely layered for when my hair starts thinning (thanks to post-Jack hormones)!
What are you loving today?  Link up {here}!


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Jack: Three Months

Thank goodness we have a good sleeper on our hands!  He is going 9-10 hours at night...yesterday I had to wake him up at 8:45 to feed him (I know...never wake a sleeping baby.  But I was fairly certain my boobs were going to explode)!  We really aren't on a good routine during the daytime.  He eats, plays, and snoozes a while until it is time to eat again.  He doesn't have a good, long nap (at least not on a regular basis).  He likes to nap on my chest or in the swing.  At night, I usually feed him the last time around 10 pm and he eats at around 7:30 or 8.  I'll take it for sure.  I'm scared to really mess with anything during the day because I am loving his night time schedule.  Ultimately, I know he will take a good morning and afternoon nap and then get in bed sometime between 8 and 9 pm.  I also want him to be flexible because big sis has to be picked up from school and all that jazz.  So we will see how the next month goes as far as establishing a more regular daytime routine.
Jack is eating 6 times a day and usually goes about three hours between each feeding (during the day).  When he eats, it is about 4 ounces at each feeding (at least when he takes a bottle).
No official weight, but I know he has gained since last month.  My guess is maybe about 13 pounds! 
No official update here - but he is definitely growing!  Can't wait to see how much he has grown at his next appointment!
Size Clothes
He is wearing 6 month sleepers and 3 month outfits (though I think we are needing to phase in the 6 month outfits) - he is so long!
Size Diapers
I'd say we are officially size 2!  Mainly because I didn't want to buy any more size 1's! :)
Hair color
I think his hair has grown some - and it appears to still be brown!
Eye color
Still blue...and they are lightening up for sure.  As of now, it looks like he'll keep those pretty blues!
Looking Like
Definitely like Brad!  Apparently when he is angry, he resembles Brad's dad's expressions.
Little Buddy - that is what Katie calls him!
Favorite toy
He loves his playmat - especially since he is active enough to bat at and play with the toys.  He still enjoys the swing - especially napping in it.  And he has a little crocheted lion with a squeaker in it that he LOVES.  We keep it in his carseat and Katie likes to squeak it - and Jack's face just has the biggest smile!
I can't think of any big firsts.  He did sit in the Bumbo for the first time and enjoyed playing with a toy.  He definitely cannot sit up properly right now, but it is just a matter of time!  And he is experiencing his first football season!
Smiling like a champ - at everything!  Laughing. Enjoying tummy time even more.  Grasping.
Anything else?
He is so close to rolling over - both ways! When he is on his back, he rolls to his side and is pulling so hard to roll all the way.  And when he's on his tummy, he holds his head up to look around and then put it down and pushes up with a leg ... once he coordinates all of that, we will have a roller!  He has found his fingers...he always has his hands in his mouth!  And he is starting to find his feet.  Yesterday he had a good hold of his foot and was playing.  He loves to play dance.  And he loves it when we hold him up and he stands up!  He was dedicated at church this past weekend - another post to come on that fun day!  And he isn't fussy hardly at all - sometimes at night he will get so overly tired that he just can't go to sleep.  Those are the only times he will take a pacifier.  And Katie loves her little brother.  She gets close to him and talks to him and he just lights up and smiles SO big.  I just love watching them interact with eachother.

Here he is playing in the Bumbo for the first time!  I think he enjoyed being in the upright position - definitely a new perspective on things!
Our cute, happy boy.  He just makes all these happy noises and smiles...precious!
I am mixed - sometimes it feels like he was just born yesterday, and other times it definitely feels like it has been 3 months.  All I know is he is SUCH a sweet boy - and I cannot wait to see how he grows and learns and to watch him with his big sister!


Sunday, September 16, 2012

SUYL: Fave Beauty Products

I decided to link up with the recent Show Us Your Life over at Kelly's Korner - it is all about your favorite beauty products!  I can't wait to see what other people like (especially the products for fine lines/wrinkles)!  Here are some of my favorites...
Tea Tree face care products from The Body Shop
This has done a great job fighting my oily skin - and I like that it is natural ingredients!  I use the face wash, toner, daytime lotion, and nighttime lotion (depending on which is needed).
 Clinique makeup
I have Clinique powder, eyeshadow, and lipgloss right now.  My blush is Bobbi Brown, my mascara is Tarte, my eyeliner is Cover Girl, and my bronzer is Nars.
 Medicated Chapstick
Love this.
 Pond's cleansing towelettes
I love being able to use these to take makeup off.  Or if I don't have makeup on and feel grimy, these are great for that too!
 Kate Spade Twirl perfume
I love that the bottle has dots :) And the fragrance is really light but smells great!
 Aveda Shampure
It leaves my hair feeling light and clean and great!  I like that there aren't chemicals that weigh your hair down in this product.
 Essie nail products
I especially like this Demure Vixen color for the fall!