Threenage Chronicles: going to school

Our threenager went off to preschool this week…

[The] backstory

After what can only be described as an emotional rollercoaster of a summer with this little one I discussed with my husband putting her in school on a part-time basis. Citing that in order for her to be safe and me to stay from behind bars, it would be for the best. Naturally with these things you are to first unlock your phone, open the app that is most frequented[banking app], login and yup you guessed it check the numbers. After careful consideration (none at all) I started my search for part-time preschool programs in our immediate area. I narrowed it down to 4 and after calling then narrowed it down to 2. We went to take a tour of both, spoke with admin, reached out to our village[grandparents] and decided on a nearby academy within the week. I know what you are thinking sheesh she’s decisive (picture behind the scenes me giving a bag lady on the corner $20 and saying just take her and teach her ABCs) I kid…there is no bag lady in the area that I know of. [What my mouth says] I figured it was time for her to branch out and go into a structured environment to work on the things I don’t have the patience to teach as well as socialize and see what’s behind the four walls she lives in. [My inner voice] most importantly GIVE ME A DAMN BREAK!

{The}Day

Hubs decided to go into work late and that just made my whole morning because that meant I could get straight to work, enjoy not having to scramble around, wake a baby and get out the door– beautiful. Our threenager was up and ready. I took the obligatory first day of school picture and video and just like that she was off to school with her daddy.

No tears, no fight, she was ready!!

Too many times I’ve seen and heard horror stories of parents having to take their kids to daycare/preschool and it being horrible separating usually tears, kicking and screaming from either the parent or the child, but not here, nope. So as Crush said “you never really know, but when they know, you know” and I must say it made for a great, effortless, transition from a child who for over 3 years has never been out of my care to being a part-time Pre-K student out of the house 8 hours a week. One can only hope the whole year will go as smoothly but with these threenage tot we just never know.

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Homemade baby food 

Little guy started solid food this week!! (We are excited and ready) *Let me take a moment to say this every parent works on their own timeline and does what they feel is best for their children.* With our other two I started solids around 4 months, our oldest just because he just loved to eat he was downing 5-6oz bottles of breastmilk at a time and was very interested in other people’s food. Our daughter, was opposite she was and still is a tiny one and the pediatrician urged us to start solids, we did. But I will say I have friends thay have waited till their babe was 3mos, 9mos or 1 year old so there is a wide range. Our little guy is a week shy of 6 months and we decided to go for it. 

Started with homemade oatmeal (a first for us) I usually just buy Gerber oatmeal or rice cereal but this go around I said, nope!(just [organic] oats, put in blender/bullet and pulse till powder) 

Today, dusted off the trusty Baby Bullet. Had a fresh avocado– which I like to start with because it’s a good fat, so I like to think not only is it good for babe but also helps move things along in the digestive system — which we found out with our daughter the introduction of solids can confuse the system and give the bowels a bit of trouble. 

Just halved the avocado saving the other half for the following day 

Avocado pictured was in the fridge for a day and a half.

 –ha, you just thought to yourself those avocados turn brown as soon as you cut them–true, so what I do is take some oil [I use olive oil] drizzle it on the avocado and spread it thinly across the exposed avocado inners and it keeps from browning so quickly. 

Once halved I scoop out the goodness and put in the blender, add in 2.5 oz. of fresh pumped breastmilk and blend til smooth….Voila! 

Baby approved, made by mommy so I know what’s in it and how fresh the ingredients are! 

3rd trimester and bumpin’

the beginning of my pregnancy moved in slow motion and now it seems to be on auto pilot for a bullet train. I need more time! This past Sunday, I hit 34 weeks (assuming baby stays til due date that is 6 weeks away (YIKES!)) way different tune from my first two with them I couldn’t wait, I wanted them out but this sour patch kid, I’m just like HOLD’ON! Mommy needs more time to handle some things, fix up some stuff in our new old house but I know for a fact, life never goes as I plan. Sooooo thought I would drop in with a little bump update.

How Are You Feeling? (The question most ask and I wonder do they really care…well)

I have my good days, when I’m moving and grooving able to work from my desk without needing constant breaks, without swelling up like the state puff man and babe not hanging out on my lungs. Other days I feel like I’ve been hit by a Mack truck, stuff hurts in my under region that I can’t even explain how or what it feels like.  My tiny frame can only hold so much weight so as baby gets heavier my hips kill and I can barely walk.  I’ve been blessed this pregnancy with terrible sciatic nerve pain (oh my goodness) oh and magically for the past 2 and a half weeks I’ve had a friend come out from the dark region… a painful experience so after this unfriendly visit it’s slowly returning to the depths in which it came out of (finally I can sit comfortably-somewhat). But my plan is to stay hydrated, focus on the positive and do my best to make it through the tough days knowing there are many more to come–with I’m sure some unpleasant bodily changing surprises. But hey I actually look fantastic–weight is all belly and thighs woot woot!

How’s SPK (sour patch kid) aka Baby Ricketts?

funny you should ask…I would say doing well and thriving in utero– a nice healthy heartbeat, plenty of movement, twisting and turning. Which brings me to the next update as of right now baby R is breech.  Not to worry our midwife has sent me home with yoga positions I can do to hopefully encourage this little one to roll and stay in the right position. They have also suggested acupuncture, acupressure and chiro and if all else fails we have an appointment in 2 weeks to meet to discuss external turning (but we will cross that bridge if/when we get there). I will post an update after our 36 week appointment.

What I Love to Eat?

this kid and momma really love meat <beef> to be exact. Burgers, steak (cooked medium), tacos and ribs. mMMmmm. But also I can’t start the day without 2 fried eggs usually on a slice of buttered toast with spinach, tomato and a slice of cheese… delish! Once I eat it baby seems to be happy and settles down. When I eat anything else cereal with milk, waffles or oatmeal my belly is full but SPK seems disinterested and I get this weird feeling that doesn’t seem to be corrected till I chug water and make fried eggs (strange I know- hence the reason we call this kid SPK).  Our other fave is Friendly’s Reese’s Pieces ice cream sundaes – though hubs brought me home strawberry cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory and I was in heaven!

What is my main focus?

well my main focus is keeping up with my prenatal yoga at least once a week at Art & Soul Yoga, I truly attribute it to me feeling delicious and also it helps prepare me with moves and positions for a healthy productive natural labor. Another focus is maintaining a healthy sex life with my husband I’m definitely not the pregnant woman with a low sex drive or that’s repulsed by her husband{nope} gimme,gimme! Lol but serious the best advice that we both smiled at was midwives saying the more sexually active you are during your pregnancy the easier labor will be — now I don’t know if it’s true but why not do our part if it could possibly make this natural birthing experience easier?! And lastly my main focus is to really embrace and do my best to enjoy this pregnancy…this is the last (knock on wood, carry a lucky rabbits foot, pray hubs gets a vasectomy and the God understands that I’m tapping out).

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30 weeks & Road Tripping

Currently traveling 401 miles in the car for approximately 7 hours and crossing through 6 states to spend a week of relaxation with family. Screenshot_2016-08-22-15-03-33How do you stay comfortable? How do you figure out your ETA when you have to make frequent stops? There should’ve a pregnancy setting on the Waze or Google maps app

have to keep my water intake up and with a growing baby thumping on the bladder and road bumps it’s recipe for accidents -and I don’t mean motor vehicle- {I kid, well kinda} so have to stop and make frequent bathroom visits

I have to tell ya we carry our 2 yr old’s portable potty and I seriously considered using it during the ride so we didn’t have to stop again and again. The only reason I seriously reconsidered was the fact that it’s super tiny and way low to the ground it would be a mission fail with some disgusted road trip mates wondering why the eff didn’t I just ask them to pull over. And I imagined that even though in the van with my brothers and their girlfriends and my parents there is nothing grand about having to have them help lift my pregnant booty off a tiny seat on the floor of a rental van-while I wince in pain because my sciatica is too much-all the while knocking over a tiny tot pot full of pee {No Thanks I’ll pass and keep my dignity}and yup  all of that flashed before my eyes.

since getting pregnant this go around, I haven’t taken a trip longer than an hour so I’m unsure if I swell but occasionally I’ve been flexing and pointing my feet and making circles s well as raising my arms above my head and making wrist circles starting in one direction and then changing directions. Figured it be best to keep the circulation going and keep my mind on that instead of the car full talking about Pokemon GO and Poke stops [insert eye roll]

So for me, keeping my legs elevated, shoes kicked off, snacks on deck is how I stay comfortable; And with my parents driving gives me a chance to check emails, pay bills, return texts and work on my blog, of course!

Happy World Breastfeeding Week ( . ) ( . ) !

Whether you are a soon-to-be mommy considering breastfeeding, a new mommy trying to get the hang of it, a mom with previous children that didn’t nurse/couldnt nurse due to complications, a veteran nursing mommy or a mom who has nursed and your babes are older and miss that bond… this post is for you!

Our oldest (son) will be 10 soon and youngest (daughter)  is 2, both nursed for 1 year (daughter was a little longer via once a night feedings). Both of them the mantra ” breast is best” echoed in my head and also I told myself it won’t last long. * I did supplement occasionally * hehe see how I snuck that in? But no seriously, I was not a fan of pumping so if the kids had to stay overnight or for my son I was public nursing shy { young! first child! and I required a nursing shield – it was tough fumbling with that, nursing cover and trying to get him to latch}

…so I would keep formula in the diaper bag. But I whole heartedly knew/know breast is the best for my children and I’m thankful that formula is available if needed but being able to hold my nuggets to breast and they can get all they need is empowering. Not to mention with our breast we know what they are getting with formula made in a factory we have no ideas what contaminants are in close proximity or hazards that can end up in our baby’s food – I cringe when I see recalls on baby items.

My nursing moms, past and present, don’t you love the smell of your baby? the way their tiny lips root for your nipple? the way they gaze into your eyes? the way their tiny hand grasps your finger? Or how you feel? ❤ so at peace taking in the moment, proud because this is what breasts were made for and you are nourishing your baby.                                                                                    image          or (for me it was all about us time – my husband could do bath time, diaper changing, playing during tummy time, take naps…but only I could nurse – our special bonding time)

I didn’t want this post to only be me gushing about breastfeeding (which I could go on and on- I’ll spare you all of that unless you ask nicely) I reached out to my friend Vicky, who is a Lactation Consultant, asking for a little advice and here is what she had to say:

“As a lactation consultant I am often asked if I could give ONE bit of advice to a new mom what would it be ? Well here it is ! Watch your baby, not your clock, watch or APP! Please, put your phone down and watch your baby! Before crying for food a baby usually grows squirmy, roots for breast, smacks lips or even makes sucking motions. These are all early indications that she’d like to be fed. Once she starts crying she’s almost certainly is hungry, though of course if you offer her the breast and she’s not interested, it could be that something else is bothering her.
If she cries, don’t look at the clock to try to gauge whether she “should” be hungry. If she is, then it’s fine to feed her. Babies don’t eat out of boredom or habit; they eat when they need to.
To many, the idea of having to feed your baby every hour and a half can seem crazy! You may have to educate them about the fact that breast milk is digested quickly and some babies need to drink often, especially newborns with their tiny stomachs. You might say something like, “She needs to eat often now, but it won’t be like this forever,” or “The doctor suggests I feed her whenever she’s hungry” . Also think of how many times you eat & drink in a day ! It may be a big meal or just a snack, a sip of water or a piece of gum; We are always putting something in our mouths so why do we expect our baby to be different?! She may be hungry for dinner or just a little bit thirsty ,which leads me to my favorite motto ” When in doubt , whip it out “😍”

There are a host of resources available from La Leche League to social media groups, local support groups, lactation consultants just a click away and even friends and family who are all about breast being best.

While many find nursing {pump life} challenging because many say they feel like a cow nursing on demand or like they are a slave to the pump around the clock 😧 it is truly rewarding, I’m not making that up.  But I will say what is one of the most important things is having an encouraging support system — it’s even more difficulty if everyone is pushing formula or telling you to give it up. So stay positive and be proud of your decision to nurse your baby and let the liquid gold flow!

Is Santa Real?🎅🏽

Our boy is growing up…

last night after he pulled a loose tooth from his mouth and gleefully said “I’m going to put this under my pillow for the tooth fairy.” I thought to myself hmm I wonder how much longer he will believe in the tooth fairy { but come’on it’s easy to believe in something that gives money…such as the magic of Power Ball}

Well as I’m strolling down the hall a voice calls my name and the dreaded question, the one we have avoided or danced around for a couple years is asked ” hey mom, is Santa real?” 😳

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Photo from dreamtimes.com

For years when the question comes up I get a knot in my stomach, is this the year I will have to come clean and reveal all the magic? For years, I’ve said well what do you think? He usually responds saying well the kid in class said he’s not but I think he’s real — I breathe a sigh of relief as the magic lives on. * Because I have to admit I love the magic myself: tip toeing, elf on a shelf, Christmas stories and traditions and seeing their faces light up when they awake to presents that weren’t there before they went to bed *  Well guys, last night went differently I was cornered and as I tried to ask my usual question to move on from the topic ” well what do you think?” His response caught me off guard…he said NO our 9 year old a month and 9 days shy of his 10th birthday says “no, I don’t believe Santa is real” 😱 Oh the horror…I want to go back to when he was 5 and had breakfast with Santa, the jolly large man with blush covered “rosy”cheeks and the rented suit that smelled of mothballs, and said to me ” mommy I want everyday to be Christmas so I can see Santa!” *sobbing* Bring that kid back! image

I typed this little letter tell me what you think…

Dear Bman,
We knew the day would come when you would ask “is Santa real?” And this is the year that you found the answer within yourself, so your dad and I decided this is the right time to tell you. The answer is No, Santa, the man in the North Pole who rides in a sleigh with flying reindeer delivering packages all over the world is not real, but the magic of Santa is! You see Santa’s magic is to brighten the lives of children and bring the joy of the holiday season. Santa’s magic teaches us to believe in what we can’t see or touch and develops your imagination. Through your life your will need this understanding, the belief in something or someone such as yourself, family, friends and most importantly God.

Your dad and I have read your list, shopped for and wrapped your gifts and placed them under the tree. It has brought us great joy to watch your imagination grow and share in the spirit of magic. We did this the same as our parents (Papa T, MyDy, and MomMom) did for us and you will most likely do for your children.

Now, you have been entrusted with the magic and secret of please help us keep the magic of Santa alive. Hold tight to this so that other children especially your siblings can enjoy it the same way you have. I hope you never forget the love, joy and excitement you felt and that you will help pass that along to others. This is a great magic and you will soon see with your younger siblings watching them believe.

We hope that you have enjoyed Christmas and we look forward to you helping us continue the Christmas tradition and sharing the secret of the season!
Love,
Mom & Dad

How did you handle your child no longer believing in Santa–or the other magical beings? If your child still believes, how do you think you will handle this conversation?

Guess what day it is?!

National Bump Day on a hump day!!imagehere is my bump

27 weeks along with our 3rd baby…oh I’ll cover all the questions asked daily {Yes I feel okay, pregnant but okay. No, we don’t know the sex we want to find out when baby arrives. Hubs is hoping for a boy so I back him up. Oh, doc and midwife say I’m measuring right on track so I wouldn’t say I’m tiny maybe just compact. Due date is October 30th haha yeah maybe a Halloween baby that would be fun! }

ROCK OUT WITH YOUR BUMP OUT

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