Wednesday, April 30, 2014

7 Happy Things: Jumping In Puddles

We've had a lot of pretty awesome things going on this week with our birthdays, house progress and such.  I usually write posts about 5 happy things but tonight I've got 7!

1) This sandbox was the best $30 we have ever spent!
Keeps little man busy for long periods of time.

2) The wind chimes David got me for my birthday.
They sound so beautiful and peaceful.

3) Watching Ayden put his floor puzzles together.
He puts it together in chunks then needs help putting those together.
4) We had a rabbit nibbling in our yard today and have a pair of cardinals who've made a nest right next to our front door.  There are 3 or 4 eggs. Can't wait to watch the babies grow!
5) Watching Ayden play in the puddles after the rain we've been having.
Pure. Joy.

6) House progress: The basement posts are in place and the beam pieces have been cut and set in place!

7) We are going to the zoo with our play group friends tomorrow! I have been looking forward to this so much!

There you have it, 7 things that are adding happiness to my life at the moment!  What are your 7 happy things?

~Sarah

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "First Hive Check"
And two years ago today: "Return of the Hourly Night Grunts"


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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

15 Birthdays

David and I started dating on March 18th when I was 15 and he was 17.  This year marked 15 birthdays that I have celebrated with my love.


My man loves him some apple pie so the day started with his favorite apple pie pancakes.


After Ayden's vaccine appointment this morning, we picked up some Indian food and took it to David on his lunch break.  He always loves a mid-day visit from his favorite people.


Ayden fell asleep for an early nap on the way there so we had the rest of the afternoon together.  We spent a lot of it making David's favorite, dutch apple pie, from scratch for tonight's dessert:


{recipe}

I had his gifts wrapped and stacked up with his pie in front waiting for him on the kitchen island when he came in from work.  Ayden and I yelled, "Happy Birthday!" when he walked in the door which brought a huge smile to his face.  I forgot to take the before picture but here is the after...


Ayden got him 2 new pairs of work khakis and I got him a fun man tool.

A nail gun for framing the house!
 We ended the evening with dinner out with his parents along with some delicious apple pie. It's not always fun as an adult when your birthday falls on a weekday but we tried to make it as special as we could for him. I can't believe we have watched each other grow and develop into the people we are today over these past 15 birthdays.  We are just as much a part of each other as we are ourselves. Time has gone by so quickly and before we know it we will have celebrated 15 more together.  I could not think of a better partner or friend that I could spend my adventure of a life with.  I love him so much and am one lucky gal.

~Sarah

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "Breakfast For Dinner"
And two years ago today: "Happy Birthday To Daddy"


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Monday, April 28, 2014

2 Days Toward Weaning

It has been two full days since Ayden has nursed. I established a "nurse only in the morning when you wake up" rule a while ago.  On week days he still requests to nurse right when he wakes up but we are getting to a point now where by the time we get up, use the bathroom, get me water, and are ready to get situated in the glider he has moved on and forgotten about it.  I don't remind him since I stopped offering to him a long time ago and we just go with the flow.  He's skipped days here and there over the passed couple of months but this is the first time that he has gone two full days in a row without nursing.  Both days he did request later in the day but I just gently remind him that he can only nurse in the mornings and he accepts that reply and moves on.  I have a lot of feelings and emotions about all of this weaning business:

The positives:
1) Hooray for making it passed two years! My original goal was 1 year so I can live with 2 and 3+ months.
2) Though I have had to play a bigger role than I ever wanted, it has been a gentle process which was top priority for me.  His lack of resistance reassures me that he is ready enough.
3) I have been able to see it coming so each and every time he nurses these days, I realize it may be the last time. I always take a moment to savor the sweetness. 
4) I have heard that in a lot of cases, toddlers who are close to weaning find a whole new obsession with nursing once the milk for a new baby comes in.  Weaning Ayden now(ish) will allow enough time to pass so that it will be easier for him to see Logan nursing without wanting to himself (I think??).  I am also hoping this will prevent possible jealousy due to how often Logan will need to be nursing...
5) He is finding other ways to connect with me physically.  He plays with my hair, snuggles into my lap, lays his head on my shoulder more often, gives me more hugs and kisses, pulls me close, asks me to "hold him tight," etc. and these connections are just as sweet and meaningful for me.

The negatives:
1) I feel a small amount of guilt because I wanted him to wean completely on his own when he was ready.  I feel like this pregnancy and my lack of desire to tandem nurse has rushed him a bit.  Luckily he is taking it well because this would be much worse on me emotionally if he wasn't.  
2) I still enjoy nursing Ayden very much so I often wonder if tandem nursing would be such a bad thing and wonder if weaning him is the right thing to do at all.  Then I think about the demands of a newborn and how confusing it might be for Ayden; him having to have limitations while I feed Logan 'round the clock on demand. 
3) Contrary to popular belief, older children do still benefit from breast milk that is filled with nutrients and antibodies.  I'm not sure how much he is even able to extract these days but even if it is a tiny amount, I liked the idea of him still having access to the goodness.
4) Though I know in my mind that being his mother alone makes me stand apart from anyone else, breastfeeding him is the one thing that I can offer him that no one else can.  Once he is weaned that is gone.  This is the tiny selfish reason of mine for wanting to continue nursing. I know this one is a little silly because as his mother I will always be able to offer a presence that no one else can match but I'm keeping it real here and it's an honest feeling that I am having about it all...

All in all, we have had an amazing breastfeeding relationship that I will always cherish.  The positives definitely outweigh the negatives here and I am so happy to have been able to experience it together.  I realize that soon enough I will be starting from the beginning on a new breastfeeding journey with a new sweet baby boy.  This does not make the fact that Ayden's journey is coming to a close any easier but I am looking forward to experiencing it all again. I hope that I am able to give Logan as much as I have been able to give to Ayden.  Breastfeeding gets easier but it is never completely easy.  It takes sacrifice, dedication and determination. One thing that parenting Ayden has taught me is to go with the flow.  My breastfeeding journey with Logan is sure to have its differences from Ayden's but it will be his and that alone will make it just as special.

What feelings and emotions did you experience when your first born weaned?  

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "Sarah's Feel Better 'Tea'"
And two years ago today: "Party Time"

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Sunday, April 27, 2014

Steady Progress

David and his dad worked on the house all day today!  My mom was having some visitors this afternoon so I went to her house to help her wash her hair and put on some clean clothes.  She is getting better every day but she is still very weak so we are all helping her as much as we can.  While I was there my dad took the opportunity to go into town for some groceries and a couple of prescriptions.  He also ended up running an errand for David.  My original plan was to help her get ready for her visitors then to go home for Ayden's nap but since my dad needed me to stay with her I was just going to put him down for a late nap when he got back.  There was no need for that though.  When he got sleepy around 1:30 he climbed into my lap and after a few minutes he fell right to sleep.  Of course I enjoyed every moment!


By the end of the day David and his dad finished the sill plates got a bunch of concrete bolts installed, got the brackets for the basements posts in place and the posts themselves measured and cut.


Steady progress for sure!  It is supposed to rain tomorrow so we'll have David home with us all evening.  As always, Mother Nature is in charge of how much work can get done and when.  We are eager to get as much done as quickly as possible on the house but we are definitely looking at rainy days as a good way to get in some quality family time during all of the craziness.  

I am hosting play group in the morning and need to get Maverick to the vet for his vaccines and a checkup.  Those are the only big things on our agenda for tomorrow.  I hope everyone has a happy Monday!

~Sarah

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "A New Direction"
And two years ago today: "Busy Busy Friday"


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Saturday, April 26, 2014

Well Hello, 30.

Today was perfect from start to finish. 

Starting with the french toast that David made for me
(out of our favorite delicious cashew bread)

And ending with a surprise birthday party!!

There was also a lot of goodness in the middle too!  I really enjoyed volunteering at the library this morning. It felt good to spend a couple of hours back in my old element and I made a couple of great contacts.  Afterward, we met up with some of our favorite friends at a park then walked to lunch.  David and I watched a movie during Ayden's nap and even dozed off for a bit.  It was a beautiful day full of all things enjoyable.  The only thing that could have made it better would have been for my mom to be well enough for my parents to come to my party.  We did stop to see them on our way there, though, and they called and sang happy birthday to me this morning.  My mom has always said that our birthdays are days for us and her.  I never really knew what she meant by that until I had Ayden.  Now I understand completely. My 20's were great; filled with college, marriage, becoming a teacher, becoming a mother, and so much more.  I'm not sad to leave them behind, though because I have a feeling that my 30's are going to treat me well.  And as they say, 30 is the new 20...

~Sarah

Flashback! Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "Hap-"bee" Birthday To Me!"
And two years ago today: "Happy Birthday To Mommy"

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Friday, April 25, 2014

Me?

Ayden has started this new thing where when we ask him a question he'll point to himself, raise his eye brows and say, "Me?"  I have to say, it's pretty adorable.

Today was just what the doctor ordered.  It was raining this morning so I flipped flopped our plans for the day.  We stayed in our PJs longer than usual, played upstairs in Ayden's playroom for a while and, in general, weren't in a hurry all day long.

I rotated out the toys on his toy shelves (he has 9 downstairs and 9 upstairs at any given time) and the books in his downstairs book basket.

I always forget how life changing a new rotation of toys is!

Ayden did this all by himself!
I think his new love for Toy Story helped him get it right.
Well mostly right... notice his left ear is actually a tongue, haha. 
After Ayden woke up from another stellar nap (I suppose he has officially transitioned to 1.5 hour naps!) we ran our errands.



There was pretty bad traffic on the way home so we took the scenic route.


David was already out at the building site when we were on our way home so we stopped there to say hi and came home for dinner.  Rotisserie chicken, BBQ sauce, green beans and pomegranate were on the menu tonight and Ayden had thirds. 


I got him to bed at his normal time tonight and now I get to enjoy 2+ hours (well, it should be two but lets be real... it'll probably be three) before I go to bed myself. I always feel bad putting Ayden to bed when it is still sunny and beautiful outside but I know he needs the rest since he still wakes up around the same time every morning.  I am lucky that Ayden is such a good boy but even good kids take a lot of energy from you during the day.  Putting him to bed on time means that David and I get some time to relax together before we go to bed.  Now it's time for me to recharge for tomorrow (my birthday!!).

I'm spending a couple of hours volunteering at our local library in the morning. They are having a preschool screening day and when the librarians learned about my background in Early Childhood Ed they recruited me.  I have heard about folks who volunteer, do random acts of kindness or pay something forward on their birthdays and I think this is the perfect year to start doing that myself.  No one says you have to wait until your birthday but for someone who gets caught up in life, it's nice to have a set time of year to remind you about reaching out to others.

As far as the rest of the day goes, we are meeting friends at a park near the library after I'm done, we'll come home for lunch and nap and then I'm not sure what David has in store for the rest of the day.  All I know is that his parents are keeping Ayden.

Do you ever do for others on your birthday?  Have you ever done random acts of kindness or payed something forward? Share your stories and ideas in the comments below!

~Sarah

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "Little Man"
And two years ago today: "Field Trip"



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Thursday, April 24, 2014

Late Long Nap

We all slept much better last night so we were up for our usual Thursday story time this morning.  We also attended my great uncle's funeral at 1:00.  Everyone who usually watches Ayden for us was also attending so we had no choice but to bring him along.  David took him outside during most of the service but Ayden did pretty well considering it was during his usual nap time.  

Ayden didn't end up going down for his nap until 4:00 and slept until 6:00 (usually he only naps for one hour around 1:00 or so...). While he napped I got dinner ready and took it over for a picnic at the building site.  



My mother-in-law, Ayden and I watered our new fruit trees while David and his dad continued to work on the house. We spent the rest of the evening playing and exploring. I am feeling SO much better today and I think a good night's sleep was key after the week and weekend I had last week!  I do plan to get out and about tomorrow for a couple of errands but we should be home by lunch time so I'll have the whole afternoon to relax and play with my boy.

~Sarah

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "How To: Paint A Happy Little Bee Hive"
And two years ago today: "No Coincidence

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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Craziness Continues

Ayden had a rough night last night. Every now and then he will have a night where he'll keep standing up and asking to be covered back up... even though he was covered until he stood up. He'll lay there just long enough for us to drift back to sleep and then he'll stand up and do it again.  He did this for about an hour and I think that is what made us so tired.  It's nights like those that make me wonder if he'd do better in his own room without us right there to talk to.  On the other hand, it makes me wonder how many times I'd be getting out of bed to tend to him on those nights if he wasn't right next to our bed.  The good thing is that these nights are few and far between and the majority of the time he sleeps just fine with our current arrangement.  

After a rough night, I was tired and grumpy this morning.  It took me a while to get out of the funk but once I did I enjoyed the day.  Ayden and I ran a couple of errands and then I spent a couple of hours cleaning for my mom's homecoming while my dad played with Ayden.  Then we came home for lunch and Ayden's nap (during which I put dinner in the crock pot and had some downtime and painted my nails.  In hind sight I should have napped too).  I woke him from his nap, put him in the car and went to the studio to teach my Wednesday dance classes.  From there we went straight to a visitation for my great uncle.  While I was there my dad got my mom home safe and sound. I left the funeral home and went straight to their house to sit with my mom while my dad went and got her prescriptions filled and picked up some pudding, popsicles and such.  We stayed there until almost 9:00 and left right when my dad got back. We were both TIRED.

While Ayden and I were with my mom, David and his dad were at the building site doing this:

A layer of foam sill sealer, a layer of copper termite shield and another layer of the foam.

The next step will be for them to install the sill plates.  

Now that my mom is home I am realizing how taxing the daily drives to the hospital were.  Now she is just a hop skip and a jump away and it is such a relief.  I know she will be more comfortable and all of us will be too.  Having Ayden in that tiny hospital room with all of those tempting buttons was hard work for sure...  He called the nurse's station a good 8 times over the course of my mom's stay.  He's lucky he's so darn cute, they all loved him and never cared a bit.

I haven't even wrapped my head around tomorrow yet.  We usually go to story time so we'll probably make it there but after that who knows.  I'll just have to see how tonight goes and how I feel tomorrow.  It may end up being a stay home day.  All I know is that it is time for me to be able to take it easy if I need to for a couple of days...

~Sarah

Flashback! Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "Bee Count Down"
And two years ago today: "Another Piece To the Puzzle"


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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

What Is Normal Anyway?

Despite a visit to the hospital to see my mom and putting in an hour of office work at the dance studio, we managed to have some much needed normalcy today.

Water play with Easter ducks.

22 weeks tomorrow!

Taking care of the girls.

Grilling out for dinner.
Baby Logan has really been a movin' and a shakin' these days.  Yesterday and today I have felt some significant jabs and am LOVING it!  Feeling the baby move is by far my favorite part of pregnancy.  Every little wiggle brings a smile to my face.

We got news that my mom will be coming home tomorrow!!  I will be so glad to have her so much closer... Ayden and I are going over to their house in the morning to clean a bit so she can some home to a nice, clean house.  She did that for us while we were in the hospital when Ayden was born and it felt really good to come home to.  The fact that she did it for us (and the fact that she is my mother and I know her well) tells me that it is something she would appreciate too.  My dad has been up at the hospital with her all day everyday, and isn't really much of a cleaner himself, so I'm sure the place could use a little sprucing up.  Hooray for things getting a little closer to "normal" even though I'm sure with everything we have going on we probably won't really have a new normal until well after Logan's arrival.

How do you manage to put some normal in your days when you've got a bunch of crazy in your life? I find that as long as I clean the kitchen morning and night, do one load of laundry (wash, dry AND put away) and get Ayden home for his nap so I can have that time to accomplish a few things I can keep the crazy at bay.

~Sarah

Flashback! Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "Screams In the Night"
And two years ago today: "A Better Day"


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Monday, April 21, 2014

It Has Begun

We are to the point where we start building!


The basement has been poured and confirmation measurements taken. Plans are made and wood has been delivered. We are really doing this!  What an amazing adventure we are having. 

Kids can't bounce off the walls if there are none...
Ayden had a day with cousins today and he had a blast. My mom may come home from the hospital later this week. She is doing better but it is slow progress. I am tired. I am hoping to carve out some time this week for this preggo mama to get more rest!

~Sarah

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "Homemade Natural Cough Syrup"
And two years ago today: "3 Months Old"

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Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter 2014

Happy Easter!  We had a great day full of family, food and Easter fun!


Hope your day was great too!!

~Sarah

Easter 2013
Easter 2012

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "King Of the Dance Floor"
And two years ago today: "What Did I Do Differently"


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Saturday, April 19, 2014

2 Year Old's Easter Basket

Happy Easter Eve!

"I got some dandelions for you, Mommy!"

We went to the aquarium today and Ayden LOVED it!


He was so excited and enthusiastic about every single room that we entered.  Maybe we'll have a marine biologist on our hands someday!


He got to touch a starfish (he wasn't a fan of how that felt!) and a turtle!  He tried to touch the sharks in the touch tank above but they were too deep for his little arms to reach.  It was another long but fun day!

The Easter Bunny has already stopped by our house and I thought I'd give a sneak peak into Ayden's basket.


At our house there is a little less focus on candy and more focus on outdoor fun!


- frog sun hat
-2 Easter books
- sports and sea life stickers
- bubbles 
- sunglasses
- 3 eggs (one with a dark chocolate square, one with some pennies for his piggy bank and one with a couple of Annie's gummy bunnies)

The eggs for his egg hunt are filled with the same things as the eggs in his basket.  I think he is going to LOVE it!  Can't wait to see his face in the morning.

What is in your toddler's Easter basket this year?

~Sarah

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "Toad Encounter"
And two years ago today: "Never Too Young"

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Friday, April 18, 2014

Not So Free Day

Not much to report today.  It was warm and cloudy but still beautiful.


I spent the morning catching up on housework, taking Maverick and Ayden on a walk to see the teaser pony at a nearby horse farm and getting ready for the day.  Then we grabbed some lunch and had a visit with my mom.  Ayden took his nap on the way home so I went over to tend to my bees while he finished snoozing in the car.

Now I get to leave them alone for a whole 3 weeks!

Here's the latest house progress:

Basement floor poured and saw cut.
Lumber delivered for the deck
(aka the basement ceiling/main level floor)

My oldest sister and her boys arrived today as well as David's brother and his family.  His brother's visit has been planned for a while, and my sister's was last minute and mostly for my mom, so we spent the evening with David's family as originally planned.

On a walk!
Ayden has ALL of his cousins in KY right now.
Sooo that was my "free calendar, no agenda" day... I'm not sure that I actually accomplished that. We have a super jam packed weekend ahead.  I just keep telling myself that I can catch up on rest next week. I just need to make it until then!

~Sarah

Flashback!  Here's what we were up to one year ago today: "8 Simple Ways To Go Green"
And two years ago today: "My Sink Is Shining"



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