Being a young mom means we met a little early, but I get to love them longer.

Here are some links to helpful posts I have done in the past :)

Learn about car seat safety HERE!

Need breastfeeding advice? Click HERE for lots of helpful tips!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Grace's party is coming together!

My dad got us the building that his church owns for the location, and they are going to let us use it for free!!

I ordered the shirt she is going to wear, and I cannot wait to see how it turns out! I also bought some pink boots for her to wear with it. Her 2nd birthday outfit is now complete :)

I think I have figured out what cake to get her..
I wasn't able to find a cake with an ice cream theme, so I'm just going with something like this except hers is going to have chocolate icing and the swirls are going to be pink and white instead of blue and light blue. That way the cake will at least match the colors of her party. Then I'm going to have "Happy 2nd birthday Grace" written in the center.

These are the invites she is going to have..
But of course it will have her picture and party information.

So pretty much all I have left to do is order the invites and cake, buy the rest of the decorations (about $30 of stuff left), and buy her last present (the cleaning set).

Speaking of presents..
Chris bought her present for her from him today..

Grace loves baby dolls, and she loves pretending to be a doctor, so I think it's perfect for her! I'm kind of jealous that I didn't find it myself lol.
And I came across an Elmo that blows kisses the other day. I thought she would love it, so I got it for her to give to her on her birthday.
And speaking of Elmo.. I am going to attempt to make her an Elmo cake to give to her on her actual birthday. Notice the word ATTEMPT.. it's probably going to look more like a big red blob lol. But we'll see. I've been researching how to do it, and I think I can. I would like to do something special like that for her on her birthday.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

No more babies for us..

I had my post-partum check-up today, and I had Paragard (an IUD) put in. It's hormone free, and lasts for up to ten years. I love that it is hormone free because my body did not react well to hormonal birth control. Plus, I don't have to worry about passing any of those artificial hormones to Brentley through my breastmilk. I also love that I don't have to do anything.. I was not so great at remembering to actually take the pill.
So far I really like it. I've been cramping a little, but supposedly that's normal, and should only last for a couple of days. As far as the IUD itself, I can't feel it at all, so I'm happy with that.

Also, I've lost 30 lbs since I had Brentley!!! And Brentley turned one month old on Monday. I am going to do a post about that, but I am waiting for his doctor's appointment. There was a mix up with his insurance, so we have to wait until we get that straightened out.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Last couple of days were filled with fun :)

It started Saturday. We all went to eat with my dad.. normally Grace is a nightmare at restaurants. She tries to get out of her high chair, and throws a fit when we won't let her. Because of this, we had not gone out to eat at all since Brentley was born. Well, finally my dad convinced us, and it went great! Brentley slept the entire time we were there, and Grace did wonderful! She started trying to get out a couple of times, but we just told her no, and she sat back down. It was so nice to be able to enjoy a meal without having to fight with the babies.
Then, that night, Chris went to the movies with his cousin. She is one of my best friends, but I obviously can't go to the movies right now, so he went with her. While they were gone, Grace and I did some halloween crafts while Brentley was sleeping. We did ghost footprints, and I drew a pumpkin and let her paint it orange. She LOVES to paint!

The next day we went to Sami's birthday party. It was at a park, and Grace had a blast! I figured she would be trying to run off to play while Sami was opening presents and eating cake, but she waited patiently, and she was soooo excited when she finally got to go play.



She had so much fun :) Thank you for inviting us Brittany :)

Then today we took the babies to the Tennessee Aquarium with my mom, sister, and my sister's dad, plus my mom's friend, and her three kids. I think Grace was still a bit too young. When we were about half way through she got really tired and cranky. And also, right around that same time, Brentley woke up, so I had to carry him and feed him. I am now the master at walking and feeding, but let me tell you, even with everything completely covered, you would think I had seven heads or something. People were staring at me like I was a walking freak show. Oh well. I wasn't showing anything, and I am not going to starve my baby to please other people.
Anyway, at the end, Grace fell asleep on Chris. We all went to eat at TGI Fridays afterwards. Grace woke up just before we got there.. again, I was terrified that she was going to be a terror at the restaurant, but she amazed me yet again! Maybe she has finally outgrowing her restaurant antics!! She stayed in her high chair, and when the food came, she ate all of it! She has never done that before. She usually eats a couple of bites, and then starts throwing a fit to get up. I'm really hoping she keeps this up. We have been trying to get to this point for a long time, and I think she is finally old enough to understand us. I praised her for doing so well.
Picture time..

Brentley was asleep in the stroller at first, but he woke up, so I put him in the carrier, and he fell back to sleep.

Gracy and daddy in the center of the pirahna tank. (Yes, she is wearing the same shirt as the day before. I promise I washed it first. I just like it on her so much that I let her wear it again.)

Checking out the fish.

Checking out the otters.

Touching the snake.. no it's not real.

Touching the giant turtle shell.

In the center of the crab tank.

Brentley sleeping in the carrier.

He slept like this for two hours. He loves to be worn, and thank goodness because it would have killed my back if I would have had to carrying him that long.


Also, while I was searching for halloween crafts, I stumbled upon some other great craft ideas. We are on a tight budget this year for Christmas, so I decided to do homemade gifts for the extended family. I already made a pillow for my sister. Now I have decided that we are going to do dough ornaments and pipe cleaner/bead ornaments that Grace is going to help me make for the grandparents, and I am going to make marble magnets for the grandparents and my sister and brother.
The magnets are going to say "Grandpa" for my dad, "Grammy" for my mom, "Grandma" for Chris' mom, and of course "Cody" and "Cheyenne" for my brother and sister. Then for dough ornaments.. I am going to get Grace to help me cut them out with cookie cutters and have her paint them. For the pipe cleaner/bead ornaments I am going to do candy canes and possibly snowflakes if I have time.

***Editted to add: I just decided that I am doing gift baskets for the grandparents. Each grandparent will get a gift basket with a framed family Christmas picture of us, a dough ornament, a bead ornament, the marble magnets, and a hot chocolate mix cone (another neat idea I found). As I complete the crafts I will try to post directions and outcomes. And once I get the gift baskets together I will do a post about those as well. I know that this stuff may sound pricey, but it's really not. Especially compared to what we spent on each grandparent last year.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Does this end soon?

Grace is apparently getting her two year molars.. She is constantly chewing on her fingers, and she has started drooling :( She doesn't really act like it hurts, and doesn't seem anymore fussy than usual, but it must be hurting her some or she wouldn't be chewing on her fingers.. I guess I need to invest in some more teething tablets..


My life is also about to get a bit more complicated.. Breastfeeding Brentley is going really well, and I don't want to have to give that up when I go back to school, so I am going to have to pump some. I talked to come of my cafemom buddies who have experience with this, and from what I can gather, I need to start pumping now. At least once a day and storing it (if frozen it stays good for six months). Then when he is about five weeks old I have to introduce the bottle. Apparently if I wait any longer than that he will probably not take well to the bottle because he will be so used to me. I will hopefully only have class two days a week when I start back, so he won't need that many bottles a week, but he's still going to need them. So from now on I am going to start pumping one time a day. Hopefully this will all work out because I really don't want to supplement formula if I don't have to. I want to breastfeed him as long as possible. I'm not sure if I will keep doing it after he turns one though.. Luckily he will be turning one right around the time I have to start taking six classes at a time (ahhhhh!) for the education program, so if I feel I can't keep it up after that, he will at least have been breastfed for a year. And I will have the whole summer right before he turns one to exculsively breastfeed him. Anyway.. wish me luck that this pumping thing works out!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Brentley awake and alert.

He's 3 weeks and two days old now. No one warned me that time flies even faster with your second baby. Just a week from tomorrow he will be 1 month old already :( He already has his own little personal traits.. like he likes to put his arm over his face when he's falling asleep, he likes to hold my hair, and he smiles when he passes gas lol.

He is now awake and alert more, and holds his head up really well. Just wanted to share this video with everyone :)

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Back to work.

So, yesterday was my first day back at work. I work at a speedway one day a week (Friday) selling tickets. All I do the whole time is sit, take people's money, and hand them tickets. The lady I work with said I could bring Brentley with me (she is the manager's step-daughter). I was a little apprehensive to bring him, but it was either bring him or not go because I haven't started pumping any. He feeds exculsively from me. And I really need the money to get everything together for Grace's party. So, I went and I took Brentley with me. It actually went very well. He woke up when we got there, so I fed him. I was covered, so most people didn't even know what I was doing. I even had one man ask if he could see him, and I was like, "Well, he's eating." With the look on that man's face you would have thought I punched him in the face or something lol.
He fell asleep after he ate and slept for about 3 hours, which was right through the busiest part of the night. He woke up again, so I fed him, and he fell back to sleep until we left. It could not have went better. The good thing is that it is only open until the end of Oct. so he will still be little (and mostly sleeping) when it closes and I can keep taking him all the way until we close. Then when it opens in March I will be able to leave him with Chris.

Most of our customers come every week, so most of them know me, and were excited to see the baby, but the weird thing was, I had five different people tell me they didn't even know I was pregnant??? Seriously? I was HUGE! Lol. I just cannot figure out how they missed that. Maybe they just thought I was fat, but even I know I looked pregnant. Maybe they are just really not observant or something lol.

Anyway.. so today I went to Dollar Tree and got plates, cups, table clothes, spoons, and napkins for Grace's party. I am aso fixing to order her balloon and Brentley's costume off of amazon. Unfortunately, Dollar Tree didn't have brown decorations and didn't have plastic bowls. I'm going to have to go to Party City to get brown plates, cups, bowls, latex balloons, and table cloths, plus pink and white bowls and latex balloons. Plus I need the stuff for goody bags. I'm going to do bubbles, stickers, gummies, crackers, and possibly more. Not sure yet.
I'm also going to have a custom shirt made for her. It's going to have a big 2 in the center and above that it will say "Grace is" so all together it will say "Grace is 2." This shirt is going to be pink and the 2 is going to have colors to match the theme (pink, brown, and white). I can't wait to get this!
My dad is looking into getting us the building that his church owns to use for her party. If he does it will be free, so that is always good :) I'm still a long way off from being done, but at least I have officially gotten started because it's just a month and 12 days until her party!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

First bath :)

Brentley's cord fell off a couple of days ago, and today he got his first bath :)

But oh the joys of a baby at bath time.. Chris was holding him so I could take his diaper off. I opened his diaper and wait for a few seconds to make sure he didn't pee. He didn't so I took the diaper off, and as soon as I did he started peeing, and then... pooping! It took me like 5 minutes to get the bathroom cleaned up. Then we finally managed to get him in the tub lol.

He was not happy at all lol.


Grace was helping me. (I promise she does not have a rat tail.. it is just the way her hair looks in this pic.)

He was much happier here.



And I think this picture is cute, so I had to add it..


Grace thought it would be fun to decorate her brother lol. And he is the one holding his head up. He's getting really good at it!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Halloween, Grace's birthday, and Christmas.

So this is my favorite time of the year! First we have Sami's party (I need to know what sort of stuff she wants for a present), then Halloween is just a little over a month away, then Grace's birthday, then Cayle's birthday (need some ideas for presents for him too), then Thanksgiving, then Christmas!!

Halloween:
I just need shoes for Grace's costume. I don't have a pic, but I have the tutu, leotard, and tights :)
Then this is the costume we are going to get for Brentley..

Grace's birthday:
I got her a Barney CD. Unfortunately she's now all about Elmo, but I think she will still like the CD (hopefully). I was going to do an Elmo themed party, but I may just do an ice cream theme. My mom did an ice cream bar for my sister's birthday, and I loved the idea. She had all sorts of toppings to pick from, and some cute decorations on the ice cream table that she said I could use. I'm thinking of going with neopolitan colors.. pink, white, and brown. I also found some adorable invites with an ice cream design. And then I found these adorable balloons on amazon..

What do you guys think??

And then for her other big present we are going to get her this..

She loves to help me clean (especially sweep), but she practically takes down the house with a full size broom. You have to duck and cover when she is "sweeping" lol. I'm think a child sized broom would be great for her! Plus she'll like the other stuff too. I think the pretend swiffer is adorable lol.
Now I just have to find the money for it all... Plus her birthday/their halloween pictures..

Christmas:
We have money saved up for their Christmas stuff, so I'm not really sweating it money wise.

--Grace:
We are going to get her this for sure..

And a helmet to go with it.

We also want to get her a small basketball hoop to hang on her wall (she loves them because she loves balls), and a pretty bow with her initial on it for sure. We would like to get her a portable DVD player if we can afford it.

--Brentley:
We want to get him something like this for sure..

We also want to get him a children's Bible, a monogrammed blanket, and some personalized cups like Grace has for sure.

We also have to get Brentley a stocking, family Christmas pictures, a personalized family ornament, a first Christmas ornament for Brentley, and Grace's yearly ornament to follow our tradition.

I know I plan everything wayyyy too far in advance, but I kind of have to when we are on a tight budget. Plus I get excited when this time of year comes around! Lol.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Aiming to get healthy..

As I said before I am already below what I was before I got pregnant. I can wear my pants that I haven't been able to wear since before I had Grace. That is a major accomplishment for me, but I still want to lose more. I need to lose 17 lbs for me to be in a healthy weight range, so I made it my goal to lose 20 lbs. This seems impossible to me because I haven't been that weight since I was a sophomore in high school (4 years ago), but I'm going to work at it. Chris wants to lose weight as well. He says he wants to lose 50 lbs. I really don't think he needs to lose that much, but whatever makes him happy. According to the BMI index he needs to lose about 35lbs to be in the healthy weight range, but I know that BMI does not take into account muscle, and he has quite a bit of muscle in his arms and legs. I think he would be fine if he lost about 30lbs. I have no problem with him the way he is now, but I do want him to be happy with himself.

Anyway.. my first step to getting healthier is to replace all unhealthy snacks with healthy snacks. This will benefit our whole family.. even Brentley because he gets whatever I eat. Only problem is, Chris and Grace are picky :( I have been trying out different healthier snacks on Grace and I have discovered that she likes grapes, apples, pretzels, ranch Wheat Thins, strawberry granola bars, bagels, fat free yogurt, peanut butter, low fat cheese sticks, plain Cheerios, and chocolate covered raisins (okay those aren't really healthy, but we get the dark chocolate kind, and I figure it's better than a candy bar). The next thing I want to try is some sort of unsalted nut (I hate nuts, but it's worth a shot).

Is there anything else you guys can think of that would be a healthy snack to try?? Grace will not eat any fruits besides apples and purple grapes and occasionally strawberries, and she will not eat any vegetables.

For Chris and me, we have decided we are no longer going to have coke/pepsi products in our house.. from now on it's milk, water, juice, or flavored water (since Chris doesn't like regular water). I also know that making more meals from scratch will be much healthier.. I just have to get used to doing that with the new baby. I'm trying to get him on a schedule where he sleeps around dinner time, but I still think he has a radar for me wanting to cook lol. One good thing is we don't have the money to eat out a lot, so we don't have to worry about eating too much fast food or anything.
Any other tips would be greatly appreciated :)


Also, side notes:
*Brentley is two weeks old today!
*I got all of Grace's halloween costume except the shoes - good thing! Grace can officially reach and unlock our dead bolt - bad thing! Time to baby proof the door!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Life..

I figured that the transition from one child to two children would be extremely hard. I had every worst case senario in my head.. Grace was going to hate me, start acting terrible, try to hurt the baby, etc. etc. Chris wasn't going to help anymore than he did before. I wasn't going to be able to keep the house clean. Never going to be able to leave the house.. Everything was just going to be horrible in my head, but amazingly it's not!!

Chris has been amazing. He gets up with Grace at night, helps me clean (not a lot, but more than he did before, so I'll take it lol), changes Grace's diapers, and pretty much gets whatever she needs like drinks or food, he doesn't stay on his game all day and will actually ask me before he gets on it, sometimes cooks dinner, and the best thing is that he has been so sweet. He usually has a short temper. He has it under control, but I figured adding another baby to the mix might bring out the bad in him again, but it hasn't. He has really grown up since Grace was a newborn :)

And with Grace, she really is doing great! She loves her little brother and it is just precious! She can't say brother or Brentley yet, but she calls him "baby" lol. She would never say baby before I had him, but now she says it :) She loves to give him hugs and kisses, pat him, tickle him, cover him up, try to feed him her food and drinks (lol), and even hold him. I helped her hold him the other day, and ever since then she will come up to me, hold out her hands opening and closing them, and then pat her chest. It is so cute!! I try not to let her hold him too much though because she doesn't really understand how to be gentle yet. She tries to squeeze him. The only thing she is not good at is being quiet. If I get him to lay down on his own she usually wakes him up being loud, but I can live with that.

And Brentley is a really good baby. He only cries if he's hungry or when he's getting his diaper changed. This kid HATES having his diaper changed! He screams bloody murder the whole time. It's not a big deal though because he stops crying as soon as I pick him up. He's a champ at eating, however he does prefer my left breast to my right breast so it takes him twice as long to eat on the right because he fights it. And one good thing is he actually likes to be covered while eating, so feeding him in public is a breeze. He's a good sleeper too. If Grace doesn't wake him up I can get him to sleep on his boppy for about 2 hours, which gives me time to pick up the house and spend time with Grace. And at night he usually sleeps at least 4 hours at a time. Last night he slept for 7 hours straight!! It was so nice to get that much sleep! On bad thing is that if he's awake he has to be in my arms.. he'll let Chris hold him for maybe 15 minutes, and you can forget about me putting him in his bouncer/swing. He'll sit there for about a minute and then start crying lol. At least I can get him to sleep in his boppy or I'd never get anything done. (And yes, I know it says not to let them sleep in it, but he only does it during the day where I can watch him).

The only thing that is not going so great is cooking. It's like Brentley has a radar for it. Anytime I even think about cooking he wakes up. Hopefully that will get easier as time goes on.

All in all I feel like my life is perfect. I never realized how amazing it would feel to have my family complete. I am so glad I got pregnant with Brentley when I did. I always wanted my kids about two years apart, but we were going to wait until I got out of college. God had different plans for us though, and he is never wrong. He knew what my heart truly desired.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Ugg I hate this place!!

I cannot wait until our lease is up because we will be moving! We are renting, and in that agreement they are supposed to fix any problems. Not to long after we moved in we realized that both the front and back doors would leak whenever it rained hard. Water would come in and run everywhere if we didn't stop it. They insisted on just replacing the weather stripping over and over for months, which NEVER fixed it. We had to have a spot in the floor by our front door replaced because it was sinking in due to water damage (and it took them 2 months to do that). Then our wall, yes wall, in our bedroom started leaking!! After about a month they finally replaced the siding for that, and our room stopped getting flooded. Then just before Brentley was born they FINALLY came and replaced both of our doors, but left the trim off one door, and the wall paper got ripped because of it. It looks awful. They finally put the trim back on, but the wall paper is still ripped.

Now taking a step back.. a few months ago lightning struck our place and blew Chris' xbox. We assumed it was just a fluke of nature, saved up money for a new one. Then when the guy was replacing the doors we noticed something.. he had plugged his power saw into one of our outlets.. everytime he would run it our lights would get dim. Okay that's weird, but we didn't even connect it. Then just the other day we had a neighbor over. Our TV was on, but we weren't watching anything. It was just a blank screen. Well the screen flickered, and then the TV was just dead. We couldn't even get power to the TV. We took it to a repair shop to find out what is wrong, and he said a surge completely fried the motherboard??? What the heck?? Basically our 42" flat screen is just a giant piece of junk now! We knew then that something is wrong with the electrical stuff in our place. Then today our other 22" flat screen was acting weird. The screen would randomely go black, then come back on. We didn't know what to do. Then Chris was cooking dinner.. we had the TV, living room light, kitchen lighten, and kitchen fan on. When Chris turned the kitchen fan off it made the TV go black??? He did it again, and it did the same thing. I am terrified that our place is going to catch on fire because of all of this crazy crap!! We called, but since it's labor day they aren't open :(

Then to top it all off, get this! We thought the door problem was over, but no! It's been raining all day here, and water has been, once again, pouring under the back door. At least it's not coming under the front door, but it gets better! Apparently our "new" doors are NOT weatherproof! You can see water stains on the INSIDE of the door now, AND the doors are now swelling! You can barely open and close the front door now!

And yet it gets even better! I walked into Brentleys room to change him and saw something wet. I was about to murder the cat because I thought he had peed in the floor, but then I flipped the light on. There was water covering Brentley's floor!! Chris started looking for the camera to take pictures before we cleaned it up. By the time he found the camera the water was completely across Brentley's room and a foot out into the hallway!!! Omg, I am furious!!!

It wouldn't be a big deal if I could trust them to fix it quick, but I can't! I have no idea when they will come to fix any of it. Our place is either going to burn down or float away before they get their crap together, and we just have to keep giving them our money every month :( It's really getting ridiculous!
Sorry guys, I just needed to vent.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Already??

There is no way Brentley is going to be one week old tomorrow?? I swear I just gave birth an hour ago lol.
He had his one week check up today (no idea why they sceduled it a day early, but no big deal). He already weighs 10lbs 6ozs and is 22 inches long! What can I say, the boy loves to eat! Lol. He is slightly jaundiced, but the doctor said it's not serious enough to get him a light. We just have to keep him near an open window during the day to get him some sun light. I also noticed that he has a red ring around his left eyeball. The doctor said that it's a busted blood vessel (probably from going through the birthing process), and that it will heal itself up. So all in all he is a healthy little man :)

Oh and let me tell you what the little guy did to me today.. I'm filling out the papers for him at the doctor and he is sleeping in his car seat. He started making the horrid newborn poop noises, but I wasn't too worried because with him it usually sounds worse than it is.. well, not this time! He had a poo-explosion! It was all over him, all over the support in his car seat, and even soaked through to the car seat itself! It literally took me 10 minutes just to get him cleaned up. The outfit he was wearing had to be pulled over his head, so it got everywhere :( Then I am just about to put his diaper on, and he starts peeing! Lol. So then I had to clean him up again. Then I had to clean up his car seat. We were literally in the bathroom for 25 minutes LOL. I think his outfit *might* be salvagable. I washed it out with Dawn and then let it soak, so we'll see lol.

And last thing.. I am going to admit how much I weigh here..
So when I got pregnant I was 165 lbs.. In my first trimester I dropped down to 153 lbs. Just before Brentley was born I was up to 178 lbs (yikes!). I figured I would be bigger than I ever was before after he was born. But obviously I lost 10 lbs right off the bat because of my little chunker lol, so I finally got up the courage to weigh myself today think I'd probably be around 165 again.. Well guess what, I'm at 156 lbs!! Already lower than what I was when I got pregnant, and only 3 lbs away from lowest weight in my pregnancy and it's only been 6 days!! I'm very happy about that! I'd still like to lose more though.. I want to be back where I was before I had Grace (about 145 lbs). We'll see though. I'm really going to work at it this time.

***I just wanted to say, I know it seems like I am online a lot, but I promise I am not neglecting my babies. When I'm breastfeeding I can't really do much else, but sit and wait for him to finish, so I play on the computer to keep myself entertained lol.***