Wednesday, April 27, 2011

a good afternoon...

... that's what is a-happenin' around here at the moment.  Daddy is home for the afternoon because some bad storms last night took out the power of most of our city.  We have power here at the house, however, so said Daddy is watching cartoons with the big girl while the two littles nap.  Ethan's running a fever, probably because we have Ella Margaret's baptism scheduled for this Sunday.  Most of the family is expected and my children like to get sick right before we have guests just to make things interesting.  Will we are will we not have to cancel our plans and tell everyone to sty home?  This is why I don't watch Lifetime; I've got enough drama in my own little corner here.

The upside to the fever is that he's responding very well to a Tylenol/Motrin cocktail (totally used to mock moms who did that!) and he's taking a super-long nap.  SCORE!  And so is the baby, who we've discovered sleeps soooo much better sans paci.  The only sad part to that is she has to cry a bit before drifting off to sleepy town, but she stays asleep longer and has seemed generally better rested, so it's worth it.  I have never really gotten used to hearing my babies cry, and I let EM cry even less than I did the other two probably because I feel so sorry for the chaos her life will be given her birth order.  She gets held so much more just to keep her happy.  I'm such a sucker.  Actually, I prefer to think of it as learning as I go and knowing she won't be a baby like this for long at all.  Too soon she'll be as big as Ethan  and screaming at me, "I do it!"  when I try to open her yogurt for her, or she'll be another Emory and begging me relentlessly for worksheets to practice writing her letters.

For now, I've got a super cool big kid to go cuddle with, two sleeping babies, a cup of "Energy" green tea, and my house is the perfect temperature.  This can only be achieved in the warmer months with the aid of a fan.  And, it only lasts from early afternoon until dusk.  I'm off to enjoy it while I can!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

And the Starbuck's goes to....

.... all 3 contestants!  I totally goofed up the directions and finally figured out why I wan't getting the responses I had expected.  More details to follow, but for now I gotta run.  Ethan is dumping out the contents of a brand new box of Cheeze-It's....

Send me your addresses to, gals!

Monday, April 18, 2011

to dream feed or not to dream feed?

That has been a point of a little concern around here.  Dream feeding is that last feed before Mama gets into bed for the night.  You get the baby out of the crib while he/she is still sleeping, attempt to feed them without waking them up, and then lay them right back down for the night.  Basically, a feeding without an awake time, just for those of you who may not know.  I've personally opted not to dream feed with the first two kids, but we considered it with baby number 3.  I was always afraid that the baby would wake up too much and then I'd be stuck with a wide-awake kid right when I was ready to turn in for the night. 

I've been a little more intentional with Ella Margaret about getting her on a schedule as soon as I could, mostly for my own sanity.  I've always been fairly routine oriented (sleep, eat, play) but now I find myself wanting to be able to plan the time we are eating, playing, and sleeping.  Some people become more lax about a schedule as they have more children, I become more needy for a schedule, I guess.  So, for the first time, I was willing to try a dream feed.  I start her day at 7am, waking her if I have to, since she is on a 3 hour schedule.  This means our day looks like this:

7am - awake and eat then "play"
8:15am - sleep
10am - awake and eat then "play"

11:15am - sleep
1pm - awake and eat then "play"

2:15pm - sleep
4pm - awake and eat then "play"

5:30pm - sleep
6:30 - awake and fussy time
7pm - eat
7:30 - down for the night

Now, if I give her a dream feed at 10pm, she sleeps until 4:30am.  This is a good long stretch of sleep for an almost 6 week old, for sure!  She's a real trooper about her night time sleep.  Her big sister was too.  But, it takes about 30 minutes to feed her.  This means, I am getting back into bed at 5am, and the big kids are up at 6:15am.  Not to mention the fact that I've had enough sleep to now be really awake.  It just wasn't working for me.  So, we pulled the dream feed.

Now, Ella Margaret's last bottle is at 7pm (sometimes 7:30 depending on how the day is going) and she gets up anywhere from 1:30am to 2:30am to eat.  She passes right back out after eating, and so do I.  I think I am  barely back in the bed before I am asleep again.  I have a friend who is a big believer in the dream feed, but it just doesn't work for me.  Go figure.  It's all about what factors work together to help Mama keep her sanity!  But this also might be why the earliest any of mine have slept consistently through the night without waking to eat was 6 months. 

Do you dream feed?

Friday, April 15, 2011

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Works for me Wednesday...

.... Ok, so this is a day late.  But remember, I live in the land of newborn right now, so the fact that I've had a shower and have not cried today is a huge feat.  But, I just remember something I did before Ella Margaret arrived, in preparation for my stay in the land of newborn.  Are you ready?  It's pure genius, I tell you.

Around here, I often misjudge how "into" a certain fruit my kids are.  I will buy strawberries and they will eat them as though they are the secret of the universe elixir.  So, I will buy them for a second week in a row and my children will snub them as though strawberries are for, you know, common folk.  Not royalty, like my children.  So, here I'll have a plethora of strawberries because, of course, I bought them at Sam's. 

This was causing my frugal husband to develop a rather vicious eye twitch, so I needed a plan.  That's when I happened upon an idea that was really my daughter's in a round-about way.  If my children are snubbing the current week's produce selection, I just freeze it and use it later for smoothies.  I slice it before hand.  I have done strawberries, peaches, blueberries, and bananas this way.  Just remember to slice it first.  Otherwise, it will reek havoc on your blender.  When I slice the fruit, I place it on top of wax paper on a cookie sheet so it doesn't all stick together in one big lump.  Then, after it is frozen, I transfer it to a tupperware container.  It's just a preference, I don't do plastic baggies very often, but I'm sure it would work.

Our favorite smoothie is a half cup each of two different fruits and a cup of any kind of fruit juice that you prefer.  Since the fruit is frozen there is no need to use ice to make it slushy.  Sometimes I cut the juice down to a half cup and add in a half cup of yogurt.  This makes enough for 2 kiddo size smoothies and a small smoothie for the mama too.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Starbucks Give-away!

Correctly guess what 3 of the following 5 phrases of Ethanese translate into English and I'll send you a $10 Starbucks giftcard.  Happy guessing!

1.) bast opp
2.) it yowt
3.) dit dowt
4.) dod
5.) bee bo

Monday, April 11, 2011

just to keep me in the will...

... I'm going to use a rare spare moment to post some pictures of the kids instead of folding laundry, vacuuming, or cleaning the bathroom like I  should be doing.  Enjoy!