Monday, July 21, 2014

s-i-x m-o-n-t-h-s

The fact that my bouncing baby boy is halfway to a year old is blowing my mind right now.

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{Not the best pictures the last couple of months, it gets infinitely harder when they won't stop moving!}

STATS

17 pounds, 13 ounces - 50th percentile
26.18 inches long - 50th percentile

Some recent milestones:

June 24th - Rolled over back to front AND had oatmeal cereal for the first time!
June 25th - Had a little bit of mushed up avocado
June 27th - Rolled over the second I put him in bed
July 2nd - Started rolling over much easier and more deliberately
July 11th - Started saying 'ba-ba'
July 16th - A TOOTH! His bottom left. Wah. *I'll try and get a picture soon!

One night last week, he actually slept for 11 hours, which was amazing. More often than not, he sleeps 8-10 hours for the first stretch of sleep, and now he's going down for bed about 8 PM. It actually takes A LOT to keep any kind of scheduled bedtime for him. With everything going on - family being in town, etc, it is a chore!!! But I know that he thrives on it, so I just need to keep it in mind. His naps are kinda all over the place, but I'm trying to just roll with it as much as I can. Some days that works better than others. 

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He continues to do better in the car. If he gets fussy enough, it just means he's tired and he'll usually crash. If not, he's wiiiide awake and just hanging out.

His obsession with his hands keeps on keeping on. Now he's gotten more interested in his feet as well. He's SO self-centered! ;) He also likes to chew on his thumb.

Maddy & Hudson are a wonder to him, he loves them so much. He especially loves to grab their hair and scream. :) He's also discovered Buck and it's so funny when he sees him, he gets a funny look on his face.

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The night I gave him oatmeal, I was just kinda fed up with feeding him, he was just being so fussy about it, so I was like, FINE. He took right to it and hasn't looked back. So far he's only had oatmeal and avocado, I really need to get to the store and get some more veggies. I figure I'll make as much as I can, like I did with Hudson, since that really worked out well. So far he doesn't really seem to love the taste of oatmeal, but he eats it. This week we started doing two meals / day so now it really begins. (Goodbye, little baby diapers!) I know the point of all this is to kinda make them more independent, but the fact that now we're on the other side of breastfeeding - now we're leading up to tapering off - it really kinda breaks my heart. I've enjoyed it so much (except for the week he was so dang fussy about it!) and it's hard to imagine this being the last time I do it.

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He really is kind of a serious little guy. At home, he's a lot more relaxed it seems. When we're out and about, he just kind of gives everyone the stare-down. It's pretty intense. ;) One thing I will say about my sweetheart - even if it jinxes everything - he's never really had a fussy time of day. I wonder if it's because I've just been putting him in his bed when he's tired, I'm not sure. But evenings are really okay, at least for now. :) I know, as with everything else BABY, things change as soon as you get a routine down. But I'm super thankful for it, he's given me enough to worry about!

When his tooth came in, we didn't have the sleepless night like I'd imagined. Just a few fussy days (more like a week total) the couple weeks leading up to it. It'd been a big bump for about a week so I knew it was coming. But he'd fuss before eating and after - even my niece commented on it when she was here! - and it got realllllly tiring. Poor buddy. 

Brandt LOVES to jump. In my lap, in the various jumpers we have... He just smiles and smiles and bounces everywhere.

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I love my sweet baby so much! The smiles he has when he wakes up just make me SWOON. He's the best.

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Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The 4th came early!

For the last several years, we've gone out to breakfast with some friends on the 4th of July. This year, Mike's brother will be in town, and my good friend Tracy will be out of town visiting family. MAJOR BUMMER. Until we thought "Uh, why don't we just do it another time?" Duh.

We dressed up in our Most Patriotic Attire and went to Cracker Barrel for some of their delicious offerings. I cannot believe the amount of chairs we need now - we started out with such a small number! Breakfast was loud but good, and I'm so grateful for these girls! They're so much fun and I love hanging out with them.

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I couldn't get enough of this little gal, Miss Brooke. Hard to believe that a year ago, she was a newborn!!
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Thursday, June 26, 2014

"You take care of them, they'll take care of you."

I'm now quoting West Wing on my blog; I think the obsession is at an all-time high.

Thanks to my girl, Sarah, the kids have an amazing new dentist. There wasn't really anything wrong with the other place, but this place is closer and reaaaaaaaaally incredible.

On Monday I took the kids in for a check-up. I thought Hud had a cavity (his second), and I was right. I hate being right sometimes. Maddy was all good though she does need to do better at her brushing, which I also already knew.

Both kids did amazing and I was so impressed with their patience and willingness to listen to the hygienist / dentist. {Why can't they listen to me that way?}

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Because Hud had a cavity, we went back this morning and got it taken care of. It was just a small one, so no big deal, but I'm really glad we got it taken care of. The dentist kept asking if his mouth felt weird, and Hud kept shaking his head no. Everyone there was so charmed by him, and because he was so brave and so compliant, they let him choose FOUR prizes. Of course he used up one of them on a prize for Maddy, which is the sweetest.

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He was so sweet after his appointment, he asked me to carry him and then fell asleep in the car.

Five months!

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An update on Brandt:

- Towards the end of May, he started shrieking & screaming for talking. So funny and adorable. I just can't get enough of it.
- He still rolls over from front to back, but not a lot. I think he's pretty entertained where he is and usually has no desire to move.
- Still loves bath time! He's trying to roll over while in the bath, which isn't the best though.
- He continues to love to have his diaper changed. Get those pants off that kid and he smiles and kicks his legs. It's super sweet.
- He's waking up usually once / night and recently started going to bed pretty late, between 9-10 PM. I don't know what happened? It's kinda annoying though.

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Snoozing in my bed in the early morning... I just love snuggling with him!!

- His napping continues to be all over the map. He doesn't go down for a long morning nap like Hudson did. No matter what time he wakes up or how long I wait to put him down, it's 45 minutes, tops. He wakes up happy, so it's really okay, but HE'S NOT DOING WHAT I WANT. So I find that annoying at times.
- He usually takes a long nap in the afternoon, anywhere from 2.5-3.5 hours.
- Since I've basically let him get himself to sleep for the last few months, he does go to sleep on his own. But here's the thing: it's ONLY on his terms and when HE wants to. And he moves like crazy in his crib, all over the place. I think he's just having a big old party in there, little nut! He really won't sleep in the car unless he's suuuuper tired. But he's crying less and less in there, so that is awesome!
- He has his hands in his mouth ALL. THE. TIME. He's kinda started chomping pretty hard on them too.
- He's getting very good at grabbing something and putting it in his mouth. :)
- He tried the Johnny Jump up for the first time and did really well! He just kinda stared and looked confused at first but then kinda got into it.

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- I assume some kind of tooth is on the way - Hudson was about 5.5 months when his poked through, Maddy was right at 6 months. I'm not eager for a tooth to come in, but I'm kinda tired of anticipating it. :)

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All dressed up for church in pants that are too small. HA!

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This little Brandster boy is so much fun! He always has a smile for his mama and when he wakes up and I get him out of his crib, he FREAKS OUT with his smiles and kicks. It makes me so happy!

Monday, June 23, 2014

In summeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeer! (said like Olaf)

So far this summer has been pretty mild and I haven't minded that One. Single. Bit.

Don't get me wrong, I'm still a sweaty mess, but we haven't even hit 100* yet. The humidity is pretty horrid, but I continue to live here and actually bought a house, so that's my own fault.

We've been to the splash pad a couple of times so far. Even though it's a bit of a drive, it's worth it.

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(Didn't take too many pictures that time, obviously.)

Last week we met up with a couple of classmates of Maddy's. Micah's mom was the room mom last year and worked her butt off! It also just so happens that she's very nice, so she brought Micah and her son to hang out. Lance, as previously mentioned, is Maddy's not-so-secret crush, and his babysitter stopped by with him and his sister, and two other kids she watches. The kids ran around like I've never seen and had so much fun.

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Brandt stayed home with my mom the second time, which was a win-win. 

Saturday, May 31, 2014

ACA End-of-year Picnic

To say the last year flew by is a complete understatement. It ended perfectly, at the park, on a hot day, with all of Maddy's friends, and her favorite person, Mrs. Buckmaster. The played a few games, blew bubbles, played with sidewalk chalk, had a picnic, and played on the playground. They also signed each others shirts and made promises to see each other over the summer. Well, that last part was me to some of the other moms. :)

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Some of Maddy's besties. We're going to miss them!

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Maddy & Lance. No joke, they were always together! Just two little buddies, hanging out, having a blast. Love them.

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Brandt hung out with this sweet woman (Lance's mom), Jamie! She held him almost the entire time and was SUCH a blessing to me! He seriously loved her - took a few naps on her and snuggled for hours.

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Can't wait to show this picture at Maddy & Lance's wedding. (Kidding! Maybe.)




Thursday, May 29, 2014

Awards ceremony - Kindergarten-style!

My little sweetheart cleaned up at her awards ceremony.

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Her awards include:

- Outstanding Achievement in Art
- Young Masters Outstanding Art Award
- Magnificent Mathematician (for her love of numbers and her ability to use them so well)
- Awesome Author (for her amazing way with words and ability to write a great story)
- Ravenous Reader (for her appetite for books and her love of reading)
- Language Arts (for doing a fabulous job in Language Arts this school year)
- Heart of Gold (for considering the needs of others through her kind and thoughtful deeds)
- Happy Helper (for her willingness to volunteer and help around the class)
- Exemplary Honor Roll (a yearly average of 90 or above in all subjects)
- American Citizenship Award (all "E"s in conduct in all classes)

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Maddy with the 'Helper Principal' - Mrs. Fambrough

Although I don't need a sheet of paper to tell me these things, I won't pretend it isn't validating as a parent to have someone else recognize it.

(Because anything wonderful she does, she obviously gets from Mike and me. Anything horrible? Nah, that's all her.)

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ACA also uses the red/yellow/green disciplinary system. If they act up, they have to take their clip and put it on yellow. If they continue, they move it to red. Maddy never once had to move her clip. She was also Star Student EIGHT TIMES. (Star Student isn't something that is given out every day, or even every other day. Totally at the discretion of the teacher.) I'm not sure, but I'm betting that's a record.

We are beyond proud of this little girl! She has come such a long way and I know her time at ACA and Mrs Buckmaster only brought out the very best in her.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Four months

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Well my darling baby is finally out of his fourth trimester. I can't say I'm really sad about it. I guess it's a little bittersweet but definitely heavy on the sweet. This baby has finally made me realize, that once and for all, I just am not a baby person. I adore all the little things he does, but the fighting naps and crying a lot - I'M SORRY. I just don't love it. It makes me crazy that he's so unpredictable and I can't control him. I always knew I was a control freak, but I've taken it to a new level. Blah.

The good news is Brandt goes to sleep on his own. I would be happy to rock him to sleep, but that never really worked for him, so I had to really struggle through the 'laying him down awake.' It sucked. And it still sucks sometimes, but for him, it's the way we had to go. We definitely feel like he's teething. Chomping super hard on his hands, and then crying out, and drooling a ton. Hud had his first tooth at 5 months, so it's not out of the realm of possibility. Boo.

This last month, Brandt has started doing all the adorable things that make it so fun.

April 15th - Started napping in his room, in his crib! *sniff*
April 21st - The last time he slept in his bouncer in his room. When he woke up in the middle of the night, his lower half of his body was hanging almost all the way off. Oops. :) I know, I could / should have strapped him in, but what's the fun in that?
April 25th - He was on his belly and rolled to his left three times in a row, then rolled to his right.
April 26th - I laid him down with his head towards the door (in his crib) and when I checked on him 20 minutes later, he was laying in the opposite direction.
May 13th - Laughed for the first (and only) time! It was the most amazing thing. I don't even know if the other kids laughed, and this just made me want to start crying! I was so happy. I haven't been able to get him to do it again. It's like he almost gets there, and then realizes it, and stops. Punk.

At his doctor appointment on the 19th, he weighed in at 15 lbs, 3 oz (almost 50%ile) and 24.75 inches (almost 50%ile). Everything looked good, the doctor was impressed with his sleeping and eating and how gorgeous he was. :) I love our pediatrician so much! She's the best. She always makes me feel like I'm doing a great job. He got his shots (same ones as his 2 month check up) and MAN ALIVE. What a mess. This kid is sooooooo affected by them! I feel so bad! I actually went in there planning to ask to space them out a little bit but totally forgot. I won't forget next time, this was crazy! He slept a lot, which was good, but when he was awake, he just wasn't himself. 101+ fever for four days, sad and grouchy. Don't get me wrong, I loved the sleeping part. LOVED. But really, I couldn't enjoy it too much since I knew he wasn't feeling like himself.

And I'll just go ahead and include some stuff that happened this last week too...

We moved him to size 2 diapers on May 18th. This one actually made me a little sad. And all last week, he slept all the way through the night. From between 8/9-5/6. Mike was working out of town and this was THE BIGGEST BLESSING ever. I didn't sleep through the night, I keep waking up after 4 hours wondering what was happening, but still! So awesome! He did that Monday - Friday last week. And then last night... well, that's another story. But I'm just happy he got the sleep he needed. And I won't lie, it gives me hope for the future. 5-6 hours / night is good, but 8-9 is even better.

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We love our Brandster boy! Or as Maddy calls him, Poopster boy! We love his smile, his little dimple, his fatty fat legs, and how he snuggles.