Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Blizzards for Monsoons

In good Army fashion, just as we settled into the we'll be here another year mindset at Fort Drum, we get orders to PCS!  (For those non-military PCS means Permanent Change of Station or basically a move.)  For us?  We will be on our way back to the other border and by the 4th of July we'll be in Fort Huachuca, Arizona!  While this may seem quite fast, I must say...this is the most notice we've ever been given for a PCS.

So I'm getting out of the blizzards in Northern New York and headed towards the dry desert heat of Southern Arizona.  Poor me, right?  I know, I know.  I'm actually quite excited to kiss my snow gear goodbye, but I'm not looking forward to monsoon season in Arizona!  We managed to escape it last time as we left Arizona in early July for NNY.

                    I might actually dislike rain more than snow.

I guess I will report my official opinion on that topic in a few months.

In the mean time there is lots to do.  The last time we moved we didn't have any kids.  This time we have a two year old, six month old, and the gazillion things that come along with them.  There's a house to sell in New York, a search for housing in Arizona, lots of cancellations to make and paperwork to gather.  Lots of see ya later's (never goodbye) to say and quite a road trip to plan.  Yes, yes, we are going to attempt a road trip from the East Coast to Arizona with our two little munchkins, and don't forget the Great Dane!  The last time we did this road trip we drove as far as we could manage in a day and found a hotel randomly to stay for the night.  Something tells me this trip will be very different. :)  So stay tuned, as always, there is a great little adventure ahead of us.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Baby Led Weaning

When I was approaching my due date with Landon, a friend in the office who had her baby a few months before brought up introducing solids and a method called Baby Led Weaning.  I knew that I wanted to make my own baby food instead of buying jarred baby food, but I was curious about this "new" method so she filled me in.  The idea behind Baby Led Weaning is that 1.) you don't introduce solids until around 6 months of age IF your baby is ready and 2.) your baby feeds his/her self.  If you have interest you can read more about it in this blog.  I love this resource because the Momma documented week by week with her daughter and I found it to be SOO useful.

Confession:  When Landon turned 6 months I tried it for a few weeks and then got scared of potential choking (one of my biggest fears anyways) and with Chris deployed at the time, I just didn't feel comfortable on my own.  A few weeks later our lives were turned upside down when Chris was brought home on emergency leave and we just did solids the old fashioned way for a bit.  I was browsing through my blog trying to remember when exactly we started back up with Baby Led again but Landon was 10 months old and he was already pretty much eating what we eat. 

As Emmilyn approached 6 months, I knew that I wanted to do blw (baby led weaning) with her from the start.  The second time around I feel much more comfortable with the gagging (yes, there is gagging involved) and realize it makes so much more sense for her to eat what we eat because that's what I expect in the years to come anyways.  So of the first foods we tried are banana, sweet potato, red potato, and avocado. These lend themselves as easiest to hold, and easily mushable.  Emmi was definitely ready as she reaches for what I put on her tray immediately and takes it straight to her mouth.  I remember Landon playing with food a bit more but Emmi means business!  Here are some snaps from our first couple weeks.


We started with banana and since theycan be slippery I leave the peel on the bottom so E had a handle to grip.
 


Next was sweet potato.
 

 
 

I fixed steak fry red potatoes with dinner so I decided to give E one.  She loved it!
 

 
Landon felt left out of the picture taking tonight.
 
 
Tonight I gave E a slice of avocado. 
She always grabs food off of the tray the second I lay it down.
 
 
 
I think the avocado felt good on her bottom teeth coming in.


 
 
 As with the introduction of any solids, we introduce one food a few times before introducing another.  I also don't sweat it if I don't give Emmi food one day because, as the jingle goes....

 
'Food before one is just for fun!'







Friday, April 19, 2013

Where's Landon

With all of the negative and sad news this week (don't worry, I'm glued to the TV too) I wanted to post something light and maybe a little funny.

So....                                                             Where's Landon?
 
 
 
On the couch

 
On a basket

 
In a bookshelf
 
In a box
 
On the potty?
 
On a shelf
 
In a cabinet
 
On the door
 
In his bed?
 
On Emmi's crib
 
On the dog crate
 
In the hanger
 
In the basket
 
IN the crib
 
On a ladder
 
On monkey bars
 
On the dining table
 
On a side table
 
Just on the go
 
On the floor
 
On the sink

 
Stuck in a stool

 
At Target
 
Behind the towel
 
On the TV

 
aaaaaannnnd upside down!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Sunshine, a bike, and chocolate cake

This past weekend was rather uneventful with a few errands run and lots of school work to be tackled.  We mostly hung around the house.  Emmilyn is sitting up on her own now and I caught Landon playing in the sunlight with his car.


 
This kid certainly doesn't take sunlight for granted.  He pointed it out again this morning.  'SUN!'
 
We started Baby Led Weaning with Emmi over the weekend.  Here she is exploring a slice of sweet potato.
 
 
It was warm enough to get outside and Landon ride his bike he got for Christmas.  I use the term warm loosely because after this picture was taken we had to go in for another layer and gloves. 
 

Landon is riding a balance bike, which I was introduced to by a friend.  There are no petals and there are no training wheels.  Here is another view.

 
Landon sits on the seat and pushes himself along, getting faster everyday.  The idea is that he learns to balance from the beginning and will have no problem transitioning to a regular bike in a few years.
 
I pushed Emmi in the stroller and we enjoyed the cold, fresh air, and most importantly...sunshine!
 
 
 We stopped to look at the water.
 

 
On the side of the road you can see all of the salt residue leftover from snow season.  A side effect of the roads being so well cleared all Winter.
 
I cooked this yummy (skinny) recipe for dinner. Skinny chicken and broccoli alfredo except I served it with couscous, not pasta.  It was delish!
 
After dinner I told Chris I was in the mood for chocolate cake.  He said that sounded good (side note - I am the one who likes sweets and chocolate so I almost fell in the floor when he said this!)  Soo...I googled, picked the first recipe that sounded good and used ingredients I had on hand.  This is the one I chose.  I was babywearing while baking so that Chris could focus on schoolwork since Emmi is teething and a bit whiny.  I gave Landon a spoon and 2 containers out of the recycle and he pretended to cook right along with me.
 

Of course we had to lick the spoon before we baked the cake.  I caught this picture of Landon's anticipation.  I remember that feeling, do you?

 
Here is the after.
 
 
 
Now it's Monday and back to the grind.  I went to a yoga class but was pulled out halfway through for an inconsolable baby.  Le sigh...Happy Monday everyone!
 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Get Fit - Good News/Bad News

  • The bad news:

Since my last check-in I...

  -Worked out for a week then...
  -Had 2 kids with a stomach bug then...
  -I got said stomach bug then...
  -I got better for a few days just to...
  -Get stomach bug again and here we are on Day 4 feeling a little bit better.

  • The good news:

I'm still losing weight (yay stomach bug?)

  • The bad news:
I'm failing miserably at the "running" and "strength" part of my Get Fit plan.
 
 
  • The good news:


I'm making an appointment with a primary care doctor for the first time in nearly three years to get a physical.  Given the amount of sickness I've had over the past six months perhaps a physical will be worth the while. (Thanks for the advice Dad.)

Friendship and Engagement


I consider myself very lucky to say I have two best friends that I have known for over twenty-seven years.  We grew up on the same street and had a blissful childhood of outdoor play, neighborhood truck rides, watching 'Hey Dude', and putting on dance shows for our parents (we even tried to charge admission!)  With three very different personalities we don't always agree and sometimes give each other funny looks but we ALWAYS have a good time and I know these two girls will always be there for me.

In just over a month one of our little trio is getting married!  We celebrated in Charleston a couple of months ago and Easter weekend Em and I co-hosted an engagement party for the Bride and Groom!  I haven't been involved in planning a get-together like this in quite a while and I must say I enjoyed it!  Big shout out to Em's parents for opening their house (and amazing food!) for the party and my parents for helping me get things done (and getting the wine that was SO good!)

Here are a few pictures I took before guest arrived:

The graphic used for the invitation came from Fox Grove Designs and she did a wonderful job creating our custom invitation.
 
We went for a Virginia theme - Dogwood, Cardinal love birds (did you know the male Cardinal is in fact not red?), Virginia wine...you get the idea.
 


 
 
A good time was had by all and we ended the night with the three of us and our families laughing and talking about memories from 20-25 years ago.  Wow, are we really getting that old? 
 
 
Cheers to you, Bride and Groom, and I can't wait to celebrate the two of you very soon!