Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Lincoln James: 11 Months

it is completely unfathomable to me that in 1 very short month, my little baby boy will be turning one! ONE! this year has been without a doubt the most difficult in my entire life, for many reasons, but it has also been the best, most rewarding year yet. and because we’re approaching the one year mark, i’m feeling all the feels, and thinking a lot about this past year and how it’s been one giant roller coaster ride.

being a parent is serious stuff. doing this whole mom-thing, alone a lot, has left me, exhausted, broken down, shedding all of the tears (even when i was sure i didn’t have a single one left), and feeling time and time again like i have nothing left to give, but somehow i keep giving. and then the weirdest thing happened the other day. after one of my “i’m a shitty mom moments,” i thought to myself, you know what. i’m not a “shitty mom.” i have bad (“shitty mom”) moments. but, who doesn’t? (and if you don’t, we can’t be friends…thats way too much pressure ya’ll). and sometimes they seem to outweigh the good ones, but my little man is happy healthy, growing, fed three fairly square meals a day and two decently healthy snacks. has bottles on time (for the most part), takes two decent naps a day (what’s decent ?!?!), gets to go the park on almost a daily basis, has a bath every night along with an evening family stroll, and is put to bed, bathed, fed, and fairly happy every single night. and i’m not trying to toot my own horn here, there are so many single moms and dads out there as well as parenting duos doing so much more than me. and i’ve only had to do it for a short year. soon husband will be home, and we’ll be parenting together, and that day cannot come soon enough. both little man and i miss him terribly. 

all of that being said, little man does officially turn 11 months old today. he is weighing in at 21.6 lbs and is one happy, healthy and increasingly entertaining little boy. i think i’m loving this most recent stage the most. he interacts so much now and it is so fun! he can play games (we play ball - passing it back and forth, he knows how to play peek-a-boo! (he’ll hide from me now too!), waves “hello” and “bye-bye," is “walking” with the help of a walker and is crawling all over the place like a maniac! 

he understands little words like “no” and phrases “where’d you go!” and thinks it’s hysterical to crawl into a “no-go” zone and make me go “liiiinccooooln” and then he responds by popping his head out and giggling because he totally knows he’s not supposed to do what he’s trying to get away with and so it’s turned into this type of game we play. another “no-go” zone game we play is when he sneaks away into the guest room to go splash in the dog’s water bowl, but now he waits for me to “catch” him and pick him up and tickle him and “throw” him on the bed. (side note: how much trouble am I in that he’s already trying to push limits at 11 months…dear god help me when he’s a teenager). 

he continues to be a little houdini/dare devil and try and climb on and out of everything. the other day, i went to answer my phone and he had managed to crawl out of his high chair and was standing on the tray - cue: heart attack. (and again…dear god, help me when he’s a teenager).  these days i tend to give myself high faves and pats on the back just for keeping the kid alive. i’m honestly shocked he hasn’t broken his neck yet! 

he is eating pretty much every thing we eat and has been for a while. I mean i keep the chocolate and ice cream for myself but you know, i’m selfish ;0p we also got the official “a-ok” to start dairy, and that transition has gone really well. we’re working on our sippy cup usage, because those skills need some work. (he takes one or two sips and then decides it’s a toy and dumps it on the floor so he can splash in it!) 

and finally, he’s sleeping through the night again!!!!!!!! i almost don’t want to type those words and jinx myself, but the past two weeks he has gone down between 8-8:30 and sleeps fairly consistently till about 5:30 am! we’ve had one or two 4:30 wake up calls (not fun!) but we even had a 6:30 one! that day was GLORIOUS to say the least. he does still have to be rocked to sleep…the whole sleep training thing went out the door when we were in New York and we’ve never been able to get it back. I gave up on trying when he started screaming for over an hour on an almost nightly basis. the fact that he’s sleeping through the night is win enough for me, and we can cross that “put yourself to bed” bridge later on (aka when husband’s home to help ;0p). rocking him to sleep only takes about 15 minutes and i’ll take 15 minutes of peaceful falling asleep over hours of screaming any night! 

other highlights this month include his first real haircut!!!! first time in a kiddie pool and getting to taste a popsicle! i'm also pretty sure he's going to start walking any day. finally we're out at hat island trying to beat the 100 plus degree heat, mother nature has decided to grace spokane with. little man we'll be spending his first 4th of July out on the island and gets to enjoy fireworks, a parade and all sorts of festive goodies! 

so there it is, 11 months in a nutshell. they say to savor each moment because it all goes by so fast, and no truer words have ever been spoken. next month lincoln turns one and will make the move into toddlerhood, and while i can’t wait to see what the next month will bring, i’m hoping that time slows down a little bit so my baby will stay a baby just a few moments longer. 

Monday, June 22, 2015

Little Man's Favorite "Green" Smoothie

hello! hello! today, i'm sharing little man's favorite green smoothie. i mean, really it's my favorite green smoothie, but ever since he's been big enough, this kid can't get enough of mommy's breakfast smoothie.

for those of you with little one's, this smoothie has both peanut butter and almond milk in it, so i'd wait to try it out till your little one is pretty much eating anything and everything (this was around 8-9 months for us). however, for those of you with younger ones, you can always use coconut milk instead of almond milk and omit the peanut butter altogether. And on a side note, here's an interesting article about feeding legumes (aka peanut butter) to babies before one and it helping to avoid allergies! 

but back to the smoothie....i make this a couple of times a week and every time i do, little man bounces up and down with excitement. it makes the perfect amount for me (about 12 ounces) with a little left over for lincoln (about 4 oz) and often serves as his midmorning snack since i tend to eat breakfast a little later than he does.

and now, i'll stop yacking and give you guys the recipe!

Little Man's Favorite "Green" Smoothie
Serves 1 (and a half)

1 cup frozen mixed berries
1 banana
1 handful leafy greens (i use a mix of spinach, kale and chard)
1 tbsp ground flax seeds
1 tbsp peanut butter
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (plus a little more if you need it to get the smoothie going)

Optional ad-ins
-switch out the peanut butter for almond butter
-1/4 cup oats (for a little extra staying power)
-replace almond milk with coconut milk for those with nut allergies (or the really young ones)
-1 tbsp chia seeds (you may need more liquid as the chia seeds tend to soak up the liquid)

Blend well and serve immediately!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Happy Father's Day!!

happy father's day! i hope each and every one of you get to spend today with your dad, father of your own kiddos or future father ;0) lots of dads get a bad rap for not working as hard as moms out there, but in my own personal case, i have a pretty great dad and an awesome husband/little man's papa.

so on this special day, i want to first say happy father's day to my husband. we've had a pretty tough first year as first time parents with kevin having to work in new york, but even thousands of miles away, he is still the best papa to our little man. whether it's face timing on a regular basis, calls, texts and exchanging photos or making the most of the short time he gets to spend at home each month, kevin has shown over and over again how devoted of a dad he is and once again, how great of a husband he is. lincoln and i are so lucky to have you and we love you very very much!

i can't believe how tiny he was!!

and of course, a very happy father's day to my own dad! he's a pretty awesome dad and all around good guy (when he's not pontificating of course ;0p) and is the best pop pop to little man lincoln. he is so patient when he watches the little guy (especially as he screams his head off), makes one mean roast chicken, and has always been a great sounding board for all of us. he is level-headed and can help you think your way through any problem, even when we're convinced it's the end of the world.

so, without further ado, happy happy father's day! love you both!!

Friday, June 5, 2015

Lantern Fest

hello! hello! and tgif!

last weekend, my girlfriend, morgan and her little one zeke as well as little man and myself headed out to lantern fest. it was the second year they held it here in spokane and it was pretty freaking amazing if i do say so myself.

according to the lantern fest site, lanterns were historically released to symbolize good fortune, request favorable weather or celebrate a loved one, along with a bunch of other reasons. and in 2015, lantern fest is all about the above or "just getting a really cool instagram photo" ;0p

the festival itself was set up near state line and when you walked through the gates you were handed a  box with supplies to make three s'mores as well as a lantern to decorate. all around the grounds were fire pits where people were camped out, roasting marshmallows, decorating their lanterns and listening to music.

as the sun went down and it got dark, we all prepared to light our lanterns and release them. it was such a cool event and an amazing site to see. after all the lanterns had floated into the sky, we were surprised by a fireworks show to end the night! i definitely plan on attending next year!

here are some photos from our evening!