Sunday, January 25, 2015

Man Cub: 6 months

Baby Chimwemwe,

The joy and love you instill in your family is breath-taking.  You adore people and making them smile and laugh.  You are coming into your own so much right now, and it is thrilling to watch.  We are finally, finally out of the shadows of your weight issues and feel like we can sigh a big breath and trust the Lord to keep you exactly where you are supposed to be. I made a goal for you on January 1st that you were to hit 12 pounds and not fall backward, and you have blown that goal out of the water.  Woohoo! You have learned so much this month!  We love you, precious boy, more than you can begin to fathom!

Your sleep all over the place this month.  You still fell asleep easily, but you decided you needed a meal in the middle of the night this month.  I know you needed the calories, and I'm sure that's a huge reason your weight has managed to creep up finally, so I haven't minded (too much) to catch some extra cuddles and nurse you that extra time.  You still go to bed between 7:00-7:30 each night, and you sleep til 6:45 or so each morning.  On weekends, you will normally sleep til about 7 or 7:30.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!  You're more or less at one morning nap of about 1.5 hours, and an afternoon nap of 2 hours.

Eating has been so fun this month! About 2 weeks ago, we started giving you organic, gluten free oatmeal 2 times a day, sometimes in a bottle, and sometimes on a spoon.  A week ago, we added avocado to nursing to get some more healthy fats in you.  You adore them!!!  You are also pretty good about taking the spoon from us and putting it in your mouth correctly.  Awesome!  Tonight you had your first sweet potato, and that was a hit too! You nurse around 7:00 am, 4:30 pm, and 6:45 pm during school days.  Then you'll have an 8oz pumped bottle around 10:00 am and 1:30 pm.  If it's not a school day, you nurse at those times. When you saw the GI this week, she said to keep on doing what we're doing, and add in black beans if we want.  I think we'll also look into baby yogurt and bananas in the next few weeks too.

The day after you turned 5 months, you started sitting up unassisted.  You can't quite go from lying to sitting yet, but you are almost there.  About a week later, you started army crawling.  You get up on your hands and knees frequently, and can crawl that way backward, but you still think you are faster going forward when you army crawl.  If you see a dog, a dog toy, or one of your family members, you will just take off to get to it/us! 

Baths, puppy kisses and cuddles, being outside, music, being sung to, the excer-saucer, time on your playmat, when your grandparents and great-grandparents sing and talk to you, laughing, cooing, squealing, being flown around like Super Man, being tossed in the air, the Pognae, eating, sleeping, sitting in your high chair when we are eating and eating with us, rings and other chew-on toys, your  cuddle toys, and grabbing anything you can reach.  You have a new found affection for Chikondi, your 4.5 foot tall stuffed giraffe.  You squeal and reach for her before bed and first thing in the morning. We'll hold you on her back, and you grab her head and ears and just hold on in the tightest hug! It's precious!

Dirty diapers, being too sleepy or hungry, when you get stuck under the end table chasing your toys, if your oatmeal isn't practically scalding hot

Six Month Stats:
Weight: 13 pounds, 3 ounces (yep, you gained a pound and 1/4 this month.  Go, baby, go!)
Length:  25 1/2 inches
Eating: nursing/breast milk bottles 7:00 am, 10:00 am, 1:30 pm, 4:30 pm, 6:45 pm; eating avocado or sweet potato around 5:30 while Mommy and Daddy eat dinner, and oatmeal 2 times, usually once midday and once right before bed
Bedtime: between 7:00 and 7:30
Awake: sometime between 6:45-7:00
Naps: usually 9:30, and 2:00.  Sometimes more...just depends on how hard you've been playing.  :)
Diapers: Size 1 
Clothes: 3-6 months and 6 months onesies; size 3-6 months and 6 months pants and rompers because you're so long

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Happy Birthday, Isaac!

As of today, Isaac and I are back to being just one year apart.  For two weeks of the year, he's two years younger than me.  That weirds me out, but I love him anyway!  :)  My fabulous hubby turned 29, and just didn't know how to ring in the last year of his 20s.

Man Cub and I woke up and made a big breakfast for Isaac.  Then the little guy let Daddy have 2 quiet hours to himself while I went to a babyshower.

After that, it was time to make a decision.  Isaac finally said he wanted to go to Pine Gully Park.  Works for me!  It's right on Galveston Bay, just past the mouth of the Houston Ship Channel.  We were able to watch several huge cargo and tanker ships come in and out, and watch the Norwegian Cruise ship leave town.  This park also has lots of hiking paths that connect several local parks.  We ended up hiking for nearly an hour and a half.  It a gorgeous day.  The sun was warm, but the breeze was cool.  The ducks, egrets, and herons were showing off, along with a few pelicans.  It's been so cold lately (for here anyway), so it was such a treat to have a day to be out without coats.  The pups were in heaven, and Man Cub took a few cat naps in between singing songs to us, one of his new favorite activities. 

On the way home, we picked up Italian from an amazing little local restaurant.  Man Cub ate his nightly avocado (he eats between 3/4 and a whole one each night now!!), and then I surprised Isaac with a cookie cake from The Great American Cookie Company-the only place that makes them right in our books.  Despite how talented Isaac is when it comes to decorating cakes, we're not the biggest cake fans.  

Isaac, we love you more than you know!  You keep us going and love us well.  Live up 29, and may God use this year to bring you ever closer to Him!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Emissary by Thomas Locke

Until Harry Potter came along, I just couldn't stand fantasy or sci-fi books.  They didn't interest me, and I never was able to force myself to get through them.  What I learned from good 'ol Harry is that well written characters who make me care about them can draw me into a fantasy story in no time flat.

Thomas Locke is a pen name for Davis Bunn, one of my favorite fiction authors.  Thomas wrote the first book in the Legends of the Realm series, Emissary, late last year, and I was lucky enough to get to review it.  Knowing Thomas' writing style, I had a feeling that the characters would be relate-able and enjoyable from page 1, and I was not disappointed.

Hyam grows up in a small village, thinking he knows who he is and what his purpose in life is meant to be.  After an odd encounter in his garden, all that he knows as truth is shattered.  In his search for answers to his past and what his purpose for the future is to be, he meets Joelle, a girl on a mission to understand herself as well.  As they are thrown together, they must also save their realm from dark forces.  With the help of long forgotten heroes, their adventure is just beginning.

Revell is giving away copies of Emissary here on Wednesday 1/21 beginning at 8 am EST.  Don't miss out!!

When I saw that book 2 won't be released until a year from now, my heart sank.  I'm ready to dig in now!

My review from Amazon can be read here.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Man Cub Meets Avocado

Our tiny Man Cub has been interested in spoons for probably two months.  We started giving him his own spoon about 6 weeks ago.  While we eat, he would gnaw on both ends of his spoon and also do a pretty impressive job mimicking putting it in his mouth the appropriate way.  A week ago, Man Cub began having oatmeal in bottles.  Tonight, we decided to bust out the avocado.  Isaac pureed that bad boy, and the fun commenced!

I put a little on his spoon, and Man Cub took the spoon and basically fed himself.  I managed to get a few bites in there myself, but he has no problem letting us know that he can do it himself.  Of course he decided he needed two spoons to eat double the avocado!  Sweet boy! He impressively kept most of it in his mouth instead of on his face-nice one! We'll let him enjoy avocados for a week or so and then add in something else. With his legitimate weight issues, we do need to add the most bang for our buck calorie and fat wise.  I have a feeling he's going to be eating food at most meals with us now.  We can't keep food away from him.  Man Cub reaches and lunges for anything he sees going in our mouths.  Smart kid!

**The jury is still out about whether he's going to be left handed, but I won't complain one bit if he takes after Mommy!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Five on Friday!


I turn 30 tomorrow.  How did that happen?!? I'm a bit excited and a bit sad that my 20s were over.  I conquered endometriosis, got Bailey, started teaching, got married, went to Zambia twice, got Aggie Belle, and had a baby in my 20s.  They were good years to me.  I know my 30s will be too!  For my birthday, all I want is 30 people to make a donation to ACE to help support the families we work with in Zambia.  Check them out, and help me celebrate!  Even $5 makes a difference and shows a lot of love!  Then, let me know if you joined the party so I can thank you and know when I reach my goal.


My parents are taking the whole fam to College Station for my birthday to see the Aggies play get clobbered by the Kentucky Wildcats.  We're from Kentucky, so it's always crazy when our teams play each other.  At least we're happy no matter the score.  :)


This boy rocked his upper GI yesterday.  He was so good!  I really think the test will come back normal as seeing the peds chiropractor has reversed his reflux and allowed him to gain half  a pound in a week.  Not sure yet if there might still be some other issues going on, but at least we're on the right track finally.  This boy hit 12 pounds over the weekend and has finally not looked backward!!!


This game. Gah!  Trivia Crack is so addicting.  My brother got Isaac and me hooked over Christmas.  I stink on the entertainment questions because I just don't spend my time on movies/tv, but the other categories keep us highly entertained. 


Man Cub's jumper is good for hours of entertainment!  My brother and sis-in-law gave this to him for Christmas, and it's the Best. Gift. Ever.  We put it in the kitchen when we're in there and in our bathroom when we're getting ready in the mornings.  He squeals and jumps and bounces and claps and just thinks he's awesome sauce in this thing.  I think my mom needs to get one for her house!

Linking up with these lovelies:

The Diary of a Real Housewife

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Holiday Catch Up

The day we got our for Christmas break, I developed a case of hives that mostly affected my eyes.  It grew worse and worse to the point of this last week hardly being able to open my eyes in the mornings and scratching my face raw in my sleep.  Oops.  Doc still doesn't really seem to know what's caused it.  Nothing oily or non-oily was working, so I caved and started a steroid yesterday.  I'm already seeing so much improvement, so hopefully it won't come back.  Between that and Man Cub's boycott on sleep for the last week and a half, blogging has been the furthest thing from actually happening.  I've spent all afternoon typing up posts and publishing them where they belong chronologically so my memories will be where I want them in years to come.  If you'd like to catch up on our festivities, here ya go!

Advent Devotions from Once Upon a Time, Part 2

Christmas Decor

Man Cub's Christmas Outfits

Christmas Celebrations Recap

Houston Christmas Lights

Welcome, 2015!

Double Birthdays

I hope your new year has began with great joy!

Double Birthday

Today is exactly a week from my Nanny's bday and a week until my bday, so we celebrated together at La Madeleine for lunch.  It was so yummy and a nice chance to have the family together one last time before work resumes.  Nanny, we love you, and we're so glad we get to celebrate with you all the time!!!  Here's to many, many more birthdays together!!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Welcome, 2015!

2014 was a fabulous year: Man Cub joined us!  Because of that, it was a bit hard to send it off, but we did it with a bang!

God's been talking to me a lot about being more intentional with hospitality.  He's given us a home that's well layed out for having others over for short or long visits, and its high time to make more use of that, without worrying about perfection.  That's the hard part for Isaac.  Honestly, so often when I invite friends over, no one shows up.  I don't think it's personal-honest, even though sometimes that still hurts!  We just have busy friends.  In light of that, I hesitated to invite too many people.  That was foolish.  We ended up with 8 adults and 6 kids and had a blast, so much so that it's been determined to become an annual tradition with an open invitation!

We decided to have a soup pot luck with kid friendly games, a photo booth, poppers, and sparklers thanks to friends who wanted to go hunt some down.  Next year we'll have some fountains and even more sparklers!

The night had no real agenda other than to eat, play, and enjoy fellowship.  It was perfect!  The kids loved playing dressing up way more than having their pictures taken.  They even marched around upstairs in an impromptu parade in their 'costumes' tooting their party horns.  It was loud, chaotic, and I loved it!  The kids did play a Disney game called Pictopia and a round of Minion Operation.  I'm sure the game playing part will get more exciting as the kids get older. 


Oh, and the best part?  We rang in the new year at 7:30, and everyone was home by 9.  I saw pics the next day of my brother's super awesome, very fancy NYE party that he and awesome sister-in-law hosted and was jealous...for about a hot second.  Those are days that I enjoyed and loved...the fancy and the late and the adult only time.  But now, well, this is what I want now.  Loud, chaotic, fun, crazy laughter with lots of kids and there parents.  2014 ushered that in for us, and I'm grateful.  We'll do fancy again someday, but for now, this:

Happy New Year, everyone!  May God dwell richly in your hearts in 2015!
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