Saturday, July 28, 2012

Our Sweet Carter Man

Oh, our sweet Carter man.  Right now he is still awake (at 8:18pm).  He refused to nap today, was falling asleep (literally) at dinner tonight, put him down at 7pm and yet...
How is this possible?
Someday we are going to get past this sleep phase and our sweet Carter man will go to sleep at a normal hour and stay in bed without fighting us for two hours almost every single night. 

But seriously...
look at those big blue eyes.  Melt my heart!  Even with our ginormous (yep, I just used that word) issues and battles with getting him to go to sleep, I have more love for this little boy then I ever knew was possible.  He is just amazing.  He is funny and spirited, silly and independent.  I love his personality and just want to kiss those cheeks all day long.  And his eye lashes...
It is seriously not fair that he was blessed with eye lashes an inch long and our precious Mady girl has nothing.  It seems to always work out the way. 

I wanted to write about Carter because since he turned two I stopped doing monthly posts.  Our little boy is growing into a kid right before our eyes.  He is all boy!  He loves fish, trucks, tractors, backhoes, dump trucks, garbage trucks, flat bed trailers, golf carts, combines, his blankie, milk, drinking out of my cups, macaroni and cheese, fruit snacks, his baby (Madelynn), running around the house naked, playing outside, digging in the dirt (or as he calls it "weeding"  like mama), mowing the lawn while daddy mows with the real mower, walking up and down hills, his Sunday School teachers Mrs. James and teacher Nora, his grandparents, playing in the van, not taking a nap, getting out of bed, stuffed animals, bath time, and playing in the water in the kitchen sink.  I am sure there are so many more things he loves but I always forget things when I actually sit down to write them down. 

He talks like crazy!  He is up to saying sentences with 7 to 10 words.  I really liked the one he said on our way home from church as we passed a semi truck.  "Carter see big truck at church hauling flat bed trailer."  He really focuses on each word he says.  He isn't a fast talker but he talks ALL THE TIME.  He loves saying "watch mama" all day long.  He even watches me while he is trying to show me something just to make sure that I am really watching.  If I glance away he will start over after saying or often yelling "watch mama."  He says words all the time that we didn't even know he knew.  We love it!  This is such a fun age.  I can just see his little brain working all the time and taking everything in.  

He is VERY MUCH 2.  My boy is a typical two year old.  He is sassy, independent, stubborn, and silly.  One second he will do the shy act and the next second he is showing off and being silly.  When he wants something and doesn't get it...oh boy.  When we make him come inside after playing outside or basically doing anything outside...oh boy.  When we tell him it's time to go to bed...oh boy.  Many things make him upset but it usually has to do with him not getting his way.  I just keep telling myself to be patient and consistent.  We will work through this phase and I just know we will come out on the other side and smile when we think about his two year old phase.  I have had a lot of people tell me that three is worse than two.  Thanks a lot people!  That is not what I wanted to hear. 

Even through his typical two year old stuff, he is fun and sweet!  I love the way he talks and wish I could record everything he says so that I will never forget his sweet little voice and the cute way he says things.  We have been working on recording some of our favorite things so that we can always hear him talk.  He counts to ten perfectly and then says 14, eleventeen.  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, eleventeen.  Priceless, and I never correct him.  I know I should soon but I just love it to much. 

He thinks the world of his grandparents.  There must be something about the words "grandpa" and "grandpa."  He loves all of them (and he has a lot).  He got to see Jay's dad and stepmom this week.  He hasn't seen them in over a year so he was way too little to really remember them.  I think he was in love in five minutes.  He was shy for a couple minutes and then grandma and grandpa's best friend.  It was so sweet.  I am so thankful for the day we got to spend in Seattle with them this week (and Jay's sister Nicole who Carter also fell in love with).  I will post pictures of that trip soon.  I am beyond thankful for the people in our lives who love our kids so much.  What a sweet, sweet blessing for our kids to have so many grandparents who love them so much. 

Bedtime is AWFUL!  I would say it has been about seven months like this.  He was amazing at going to bed until we moved him into his big boy bed.  If I would have known then that it would take this long to get him into a good routine at bedtime, he would still be in his crib and Madelynn might be sleeping in the pack n play.  Have I said it is AWFUL?  I didn't know a two year old could be so stubborn.  We have tried everything.  We have spanked, bribed, super nanny approach, and everything in between.  A typical night takes around an hour and a half to get him to fall asleep.  And many nights are even longer than that.  He gets out of bed constantly no matter what we do.  So at Madelynn's four month check up, we asked Dr. Wilson if he had any tips for us.  He told us to do a gate on the door.  Seriously?  I thought we had tried everything but we had never tried or even thought of doing a gate.  So for the last week we have been doing that and it is really helping.  It isn't perfect because he just gets up and plays in his room but we have decided to just ignore him and he has always eventually climbs back into bed and goes to sleep.  And our evenings are so much more peaceful.  He is great while he is in there but just plays.  So after the gate worked a little better we decided to take all of his toys out of his room to try and help him take naps during the day.  With the toys in there he just can't stop playing long enough to sleep.  So all of his toys are in my dining room right now.  Not my preference but just not sure where else to put them for a little while.  Today he wandered around his room for 20-30 minutes, climbed in bed and fell asleep.  Praise Jesus!  That is progress and I am sticking with it for a while.  I pray it will continue and that eventually we can put his toys back in there.  This has been a very challenging phase of motherhood for me.  I have cried over bedtime more than I have ever cried over anything in my entire life.  But we will continue helping him learn to obey and I know we will come out on the other end alive and even more in love with our boy.   

Although he has his disobedient moments he also impresses me so much with how well he does obey so much of the time.  When we give him choices, he is usually really good at picking one and then doing it.  He doesn't always want to hold our hand in parking lots but if we just say that he either has to hold our hand or we have to carry him, he always reaches for our hand.  I just smile when I tell him to do something or that I am going to take something away from him for a while and he says "o tay mama."  He really is a good boy and I am so proud of him!   

Oh there are so many more things I could say about this little boy but I think I will stop there.
We love you Carter man! You are my favorite little boy in the world!

Friday, July 20, 2012

She's 4 Months!

Oh my sweet girl...
That smile gets me every time.  She is just so sweet.  We are just madly in love with this little lady.  She is four months old today and I can't quite believe it.  She is really not a newborn anymore but I feel like it hasn't been long enough to be out of that stage yet.  Didn't I just have her?

She has big blue eyes just like her brother.  She watches everything going on around her and loves looking at mommy and daddy.  She just watches us and stares at us directly in the eyes.  She loves to smile at everyone but every once in a while she will break out in a very sad pouty lip face when someone new is talking to her.  I always feel bad for the person when it happens but she is just so stinking cute when she does it.  Her pouty face is pretty fabulous.  

She loves to wiggle and squirm.  I can't ever just leave her propped up on the couch because she wiggles so much that she ends up all squished in a cushion and gets very upset.  Even to get these pictures in the rocking chair proved to be challenging because she kept straightening her body and would end up flat on her back.  

She LOVES her big brother!  If he is around her she is watching everything he is doing and throws out little smiles every once in a while.  I just see adoration in her eyes.  

She loves holding her hands together and really loves sucking on her hands and her dresses.  Every time she has a dress on it is always super wet because she pulls it up to her mouth and goes to town on it.  

She is a screecher!  She yells and screeches all the time.  It usually starts out happy for quite a while and then gets louder and wilder as she begins to get cranky.  It then eventually turns into a full on cry. When she yells, Carter will say "baby says AHHHGGG."  He is so funny.  He is always telling us what others say and do and it always starts with "Carter says" or "baby says." 

At her four month appointment (today) she weighed 12 pounds 10.5 ounces which put her in the 30th percentile.  She was 23 3/4 inches long which also put her in the 30th percentile.  Her head was also in the 30th percentile.  She's consistent.  I still don't have a single pair of shoes that fit her.  She is four months old and every single "newborn" shoes are still too big.  I am holding out hope that someday she will fit into a pair of shoes. 

She got close to rolling over today from her back to her belly but she just couldn't get over her arm.  She hasn't rolled from her belly to her back yet either. 

She is NOT a great sleeper.  Most nights she is still waking up every 3 to 4 hours and sometimes she doesn't even go 2 hours.  I know she is too old to still be eating so much in the night but I am just not ready to be up for an hour trying to get her back to sleep.  The last four nights have been awful!  My little lady just doesn't want to sleep in her crib and we have even resorted to putting her in the swing.  She LOVES sleeping in her swing!  I don't want to start that habit for night time but we have been so desperate the last few nights.  We talked to Dr. Wilson about it today which I was expecting to hear everything I am doing wrong, like feeding her at all in the night.  He said because the curve on her weight went down just slightly that he isn't pushing me to stop feeding her in the night just yet.  So she gets one more month with a couple feedings in the night (if she needs it) and then we will do one more weight check.  If that shows that she is gaining and the curve is good (on his little computer chart thing) then it is down to business on weaning her from her night time feedings.  This mama needs a full nights sleep.  I haven't had one in probably almost six months (since at the end of my pregnancy my arms were falling asleep so bad that I couldn't sleep.)

She loves playing with her feet and sucking on her hands.  Her hands are always in her mouth and she sucks on them very loudly. 

We tried rice cereal for the first time tonight and she hated it and spit it all out every single time.  So we are going to give it another couple of weeks before we try again.  Carter loved it the first time we gave it to him which was also right at four months.  Silly me assumed she would be the same way.  It's so funny how I always expect my kids to be the same and they love proving me wrong.  They are keeping me on my toes and I love it. 

She has lots of fun in her bouncy seat but doesn't like being in there for too long.  She's kind of a 10 to 15 minutes jump a roo girl and then she's done.

She usually eats around 6am and then sleeps until 8 or 8:30.  After she gets up in the morning she eats and plays for about an hour.  Then she goes down for her morning nap which is usually at least two hours.  Often she sleeps until Carter's nap which is a bummer.  I love it when they both sleep at the same time but it doesn't happen all that often.  Then she usually goes back down for an afternoon nap around 2ish and sleeps another couple hours, sometimes even 3 or 4 hours.  So I usually have them both sleeping for about an hour to an hour and a half.  Then she is up for an hour and a half and then takes a 30-45 minute evening nap.  She is pretty predictable when it comes to naps and I kind of like that.  I will be honest and admit that she still naps in her swing.  She is just so great at sleeping in there that I haven't tried switching her to her crib yet for naps.  As soon as I am done with my summer term of classes (which end in 3 weeks) then I will transition her to her crib for naps.

She wears size one diapers and 0-3 month and 3-6 month clothes, depending on the brand. 

She loves being in her daddy's arms and I often wonder if she will be a daddy's girl.  I think I would be okay with that ;)

To our sweet Mady girl...
You have added so much love and joy to our family.  Your smile lights up a room.  I wasn't sure if God would bless me with a girl and often wondered if I would be a mom of boys.  I am so thankful He gave me you.  There is nothing better than being a mommy to my sweet Carter man and my sweet Mady girl.  I don't know why I always call Carter "Carter man" but I have since he was really little.  And lately I have started calling you "Mady girl."  I call you Madelynn more than Mady but when I do call you Mady it is often Mady girl.  I love that you look so much like your brother and yet you also look so much like me as a baby.  I love it when you are crying and as soon as I pick you up you are peaceful.  You make me feel like one special lady.  There is just something precious about you!  We love you baby girl!  Happy four month birthday. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

4th of July

Our 4th of July was pretty laid back.  Jay worked till 3 and the kids and I stayed home for the day.  Then we rushed off to the Stayton parade which Carter loved.  On our way home from the parade we stopped and spent just a few dollars on fireworks and then ate dinner at Five Guys.  We all love Five Guys :)  Everytime we drive by Five Guys, Carter says "eat Five Guys burgers and fries."  So cute. 

After dinner we just spent some time at home.  I cleaned a bit and Jay and Carter went to the store.  They came home with a fun surprise for me.  Jay bought a patio swing so once they got home we all hung out in the front yard while Jay put together the swing.  He found it really on sale at Fred Meyer.  It was a fun surprise.  Now we just need to get out backyard presentable so that we will actually want to hang out back there.  We actually had some friends over for dinner the other night and set it up at the top of the driveway because we are too embarressed to be in our backyard. 

After the swing was built and we spent some time swinging as a family we put Madelynn to bed and did a few little fireworks on our street.  Carter really enjoyed it.  He was actually a little nervous and snuggled in my lap, which I LOVED!  

Next year we will go see some big fireworks but I just wasn't up to it this year with two little kids.  

Honestly some of my favorite days are the days we are just home as a family.  I love my family and feel very blessed!

The picture below was so funny.  He was sitting on the curb just waiting so patiently for the fireworks.  As soon as I lifted up the camera he turned all the way around so that I couldn't take his picture.  

It was a great day celebrating the 4th.