Thursday, March 21, 2013

"New Baby" Updates

I know that I announced that I was pregnant a few months ago but I don't think I have given any updates since then.  I have been for my doctor's appointments once a month and everything has checked out fine.  I was lucky enough to not have had any trouble with my blood pressure, glucose, swelling, or much discomfort during my pregnancy with Kellan and so far this pregnancy is going just as well.

We did have one scare at the end of November and it was already an emotional day all around.  One of my really good friends was a few weeks pregnant (about a month behind me) when her doctor could not find the baby's heartbeat. She went back for another check up and they still could not find the heartbeat and scheduled a D and C.  Her procedure was on the same morning as my 12 week doctor's appointment and she was on my mind all day.  I had to sit on the toilet seat so many times to try to get myself together and stop crying so that I could put my make up on.  I finally was able to get ready and Michael came home to pick up me and Kellan.

At the doctor everything checked out normal until he couldn't find OUR baby's heartbeat.  He assured us that everything was probably fine and as early in the pregnancy as we were, finding the heartbeat could be tricky.  As soon as he left the room, Michael immediately starts telling me that its going to be O.K. and that we don't know that anything is wrong.  I immediately fell apart and reached for Kellan to hold him.  The five minutes it took to walk down to the ultrasound room were the longest and scariest five minutes I've ever spent in my life.  Thankfully everything in the ultrasound checked out fine, there was a strong heartbeat and the baby was just swimming away in there.  Our doctor reassured us that at 12 weeks the baby is so tiny, finding the heartbeat can be like looking for a needle in a haystack.

Every mother and pregnant woman knows that there is no greater sound in the world than a baby's heartbeat.  It is what I look forward to hearing every month when I go for my appointment.  One thing I have learned from friends', family members', and my own pregnancies is not to take a healthy baby for granted.  Why people that don't want their babies and don't take care of them, are seemingly able to have them so easily, is a question pondered by many.  Especially when there are so many couples that want a baby so badly and are unable to have one.  My friend I mentioned before is lucky enough to have 2 healthy children but there are so many that try and try and aren't able to have a baby at all.  It is a difficult concept to accept.  Anyway, I got side tracked but I did want to share our little scare just because its comforting to know what other women have been through.  

We had another ultrasound on January 3rd, 2013 and we found out that we are having another little boy!  I didn't even have to have the ultrasound to know.  As soon as I woke up that morning I just knew it was a boy.  Up until then I had gone back and forth between boy and girl but that morning, I can't explain it, I just knew.  Michael is beyond excited to have TWO boys and for Kellan to have a future little brother.  I was just thankful to hear that heartbeat again and see that everything checked out well.  We had a scare at our 18 week ultrasound with Kellan that I need to blog about one day.  Luckily this time there were no red flags.

Hands raised up over his head :)
Footprint :)
Ever since we found out that it was another boy I have been on a mission to decide on a name.  With Kellan, we honestly were not sure what his name was going to be until I was in labor and Michael had to fill out the cord blood banking paperwork.

I hadn't really been actively searching but names were always on my mind.  When you're pregnant you get so many emails from,,,, (I breastfed for a year...why I get emails from them I do not know), could go on and on.  An email somewhere along the way sent me a list of baby names that were variations of the top 10 names from 2012.  It has been no secret that I have loved the name Aiden for years but I refused to use it because it has been the #1 name for several years now.  I really liked this list because it gave you names that were similar to the popular names.

There were 2 names that were variations of Aiden that I immediately liked.  One was Adden and the other was Alden.  I liked Adden but I think people will mispronounce it Aiden just because of its popularity and there are so many different spellings of it now.  I also thought it was a little TOO close to Aiden.  So I asked Michael what he thought about Alden and prepared to be shot down (that's what always happens when one of us likes a name, the other hates it).  Surprisingly he liked it too and we tried it out for a few months to be sure.  I've been sure for a while now and have been calling the baby Alden in my head.  Its so much nicer to have a name to call him instead of "the new baby."  We already knew that his middle name was going to be Lee since that is Michael's, his dad's, and his grandfather's middle name.  

So officially, the "new baby's" name is Alden Lee Grizzard.  And its pronounced All-den.  Whew!  I bet no one expected us to have a name picked out so early.

My new diaper bag from the Whimzy Tree.  You can find her page on Facebook and Etsy.
It has Kellan's name embroidered on one side...
And baby Alden's name on the other.
The last few months I have been on full out baby planning mode and Kellan's nursery is half torn apart in preparation for making it Alden's nursery.  Some of Kellan's stuff is still up and some has been moved to his new room.  Meanwhile Kellan's new big boy room is half done and is currently the very messy and unorganized playroom until we officially move his crib in there next month.  I don't want to hang any pictures until all of the furniture is in there and I am sure of where I want everything.  I am having a very hard time moving him to the other side of the house but want him (and me) to be adjusted to his new room before baby Alden is here.  Right now we have two rooms in limbo but I know everything will fall into place in the next couple of months.

Kellan hanging out on baby Alden's new crib bedding made by my awesomely talented friend Evelyn.  She made Kellan's bedding too and it still makes his room my favorite one in the house.  I didn't think it was possible but I love this bedding even more.  The gray chevron is the outside of the crib bumper, the yellow pattern is the inside bumper and the turquoise ties and border is the same color as the crib skirt.  I will put up more pictures once the nursery is done.
Right now I am 29 weeks along with 11 weeks to go.  At my last appointment our doctor is planning another c-section for either May 24th or May 30th.  I'm hoping to hold out for the 30th because that is only 4 days before my due date.  That's really all of the updates that I have for now.  We're just counting down the days until baby Alden is here and they are going by quickly!!

Kellan is 17 Months Old!

Kellan turned 17 months on Wednesday, March 20.  He will have a well baby doctor's visit next month so there is not one this time.  These are his measurements from his 15 month doctor visit except his weight.  I put him on our scale here and it shows 29 pounds.

Height: 33 1/4 inches
Weight: 29 pounds
Head Circumference: 19 1/4 inches

A few more statistics for this month:

Sleeping: Kellan's bed time has inched more towards 9:30 pm. A lot of nights it can be even later than that.  Most mornings he wakes up between 8-8:30.  If he wakes up while Michael is getting ready for work, we put him in our bed with me and he will sleep for another hour or more. 

Morning naps change day by day.  Some mornings Kellan needs a nap around 11:00 am (usually for about an hour) and other mornings he just doesn't.  I don't push it because he takes an afternoon nap every day.  His afternoon naps are around 1:00 if there hasn't been a morning nap and around 3:00 if he did take one.  I still mainly just watch his behavior and he lets me know he's sleepy by going in search of his paci and blankie and carrying them around the house.

Eating: Kellan remains to be a good eater but his preferences continue to change each day.  Most meals he will eat anything that we give him and if not, I can usually find something that he wants.  There was another week this month where he did not eat very much of anything and was extremely picky.  He was doing a lot of drooling and putting his fingers in his mouth so I believe we are working on some more teeth.  He also threw his butter beans which were his favorite last month.

He has 3 meals a day with breakfast being between 8:30-9 am. He usually eats half of an avocado (that I feed to him) and we have now moved up to a whole banana that he holds and bites.  If I make myself scrambled eggs or grits sometimes he may have a bite of that too.  He particularly loves bites of mommy's strawberry jelly toast.

Around 12:00-12:30 he has any combination of 3 items for lunch.  Most of the time he has cut up fruit, pieces of cheese/cup of yogurt, and some kind of vegetable or maybe even left over meat from our dinner the night before.  

Around 5:30-6:00 he has his "first course" of dinner which is usually something that he can feed himself while I am cooking our dinner:  cheese, cut up fruit, veggies, raisins, hard boiled egg, cut up leftover meat, etc.  Then when we sit down to eat dinner, he goes back in his high chair and eats whatever he might like that we are having.

Kellan continues to try new foods and still loves biscuits and crackers.  We limit his bread intake as much as we can and he mostly only gets it at restaurants.  If there is a cracker or biscuit anywhere nearby he will find it and demand to eat one.

We still avoid all processed/boxed foods and always try to make the healthiest choices for him.  I still keep eggs, cheese, blueberries, oranges, strawberries, grapes, bananas, baked sweet potatoes, baked butternut squash, etc...always on hand in our kitchen so that he has plenty of healthy options for mealtimes.  

On a Chick-Fil-A lunch date with mommy.  I love their kids meals!  Grilled chicken, a fruit cup, and whole milk.  Then of course he did eat a bite or two of mommy's sandwich and fries :)
Drinking: Kellan always drinks either whole milk or water.  He loves to drink water out of our glasses and he is going through a stage now where he does not want his own cup, he wants to drink out of ours, even if we all have the same thing.

Clothes: Kellan is wearing all 24 months.  24 months fit him perfectly although we do sometimes have to cuff the bottoms of his jeans so that he doesn't trip.  He is moving up to size 5 diapers as soon as we use up the last of the 4's.  We still haven't gotten his feet measured but hopefully we will soon before we buy him some new shoes for warmer weather.  Right now his size 7 Nike's fit perfectly.  

This is what a too little 18 month pj set looks tight pants and belly poking out the bottom of the shirt :)

1. I continue to be amazed everyday at the words that Kellan hears, repeats, and then uses correctly later.  Lately he has been saying phrases with two or three words.  Here are some new words and phrases 
that he can say and USE:  soup, shower, "see you," raisins, phone, TV (TB), work, shake, "the end" (dee in), ready, "I get it,"  "I dropped it," "that's funny," marching, Kellan, "bye! see you!," blankie, bed, Gigi, grandma, "in it" (when he wants to get in his high chair), "up here," miss, egg, avocado ('cado), potato (tae-toe), train, Calliou, Mickey, mouse, fork, coming, naked, "Oh no!," Wow, song, "stop it," dunk, jump, taggie, phone, bathroom, coming...I know I'm not remembering them all.  At least once a day I look at him and think "Where did he learn that?!"

Words that he has been using in previous months:  nana (banana), night-night, cheese, shoes, socks, duck, yes, no, mommy, daddy, thanks, you, car, truck, tractor, doggy, ball, paci, Briggs, papa, Elmo, spoon, milk, tootie (cookie), chicken, bath, shoot, this, hat, more, uh-oh, book, hammer, hot, cold, light, button, mess, dirty, read, fish, fire, poot, bed, yucky, bread, Mimi, apple, water, egg, berries, cootie (cookie), go, remote, house, cow, funny, up, movie, burp, moose, avocado, blocks, bless you, miss, clock, nose, eyes, brush, phone, hey, bye, horse, train, lotion, read...and the list continues to grow.  

2. We are still holding at (at least) 10 teeth. He has 4 on the bottom and 4 on the top and two molars that we know about.  The way he has been drooling tells me that there may be more but he won't let me get a good look.

3. Kellan loves to watch people on TV sing and he twirls, sways and tries to hum along when he hears music.

4.  Kellan continues to love looking at books on his own and having us read to him.  He has started to want us to read the same book over and over.  His current favorites are "Machines at Work," "Where's Spot?," and "Brown, Bear, Brown Bear."  Now when we get to the end of a book (or when he's decided its time to stop) he will loudly say "Dee In!!" (the end) and close the book.

5.  He loves to point out objects that he recognizes.  He has to point out every one's eyes and nose and thoroughly enjoys letting us know when he sees an animal that he knows by yelling out its name.  He gets so excited when he knows the word for something that he sees.  On our walks around the neighborhood he points out every car, dog, truck, house, etc.  We have many conversations daily about socks and shoes.  He points to himself if you ask him "Where is Kellan?"  And he can say his name now...he says it sometimes when he's looking in a mirror.

6.  He has officially learned "mommy."  Before everything used to be "daddy."  Now Kellan is usually found wherever mommy is and says her name about fifty million times a day. I can't go far before he is following close behind.  He also has started saying "mommy daddy" for no apparent reason when we are both at home. :)

7.  Kellan is watching everything.  Whatever we do he is right in the middle of it.  If mommy is on the computer, he needs to tap on the buttons too.  If mommy is cooking, he needs to "see."  If mommy is loading the dishwasher, Kellan is climbing into the dishwasher.  If mommy is taking clothes out of the dryer, Kellan is throwing his toys INTO the dryer.  He gets very mad when he tries to open a drawer or cabinet that has been child proofed.  He wants everything that he can't have and touches everything that he shouldn't.

8.  I am still letting Kellan practice feeding himself with a toddler fork and spoon but now I keep 2 towels underneath his chair.  He makes such a mess and throws his food or spits it out when he's done or doesn't want it.  Even when I'm feeding him, he wants me to scoop it, hand him the spoon, and he will feed himself.  When he can't get pieces of food on his fork, he will yell "HELP!"  This lets me know that he wants me to stab it for him and then he will feed it to himself.

9.  Kellan still has an affectionate side and loves to hug at random times.  Several times a day he will plop himself in my lap just to hang out.  He loves to sit beside us on the sofa.

This picture didn't capture it very well but he was hugging and kissing Elmo's eyes this morning.
Hugging Briggs :)

More hugs...
10.  We are still working on the hitting...especially the hitting of other people.  Everyone tells me that its just his age and the fact that he is a boy.  He loves to hit things all over the house with his plastic golf clubs and wooden hammer.  

11.  He still loves to play "shoot shoot" (basketball) with his indoor basketball goal.  His new favorite basketball word is "dunk" and he still loves to tell you when you've "missed."

12.  Kellan still loves Elmo and gets so excited when he comes on Sesame Street.  We don't have to play the videos on our phones quite as often because he loves playing so many other apps.  I do have to hide the iPad from him sometimes because if he sees it he has to have it and he doesn't want to do anything else.  His favorite app right now is PBS Kids where he can pull up videos from Sid the Science Kid, Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood, Calliou, The Cat and the Hat, and Curious George.  These are also his favorite TV shows at the moment.

Rubbing his fingers impatiently waiting on something to download. 
Watching "Sid the Science Kid"
21.  One thing is definitely for sure.  Kellan's hearing works.  He notices every time a train comes by, a dog barks, or a song comes on TV.   He stops what he's doing, points his finger in the air and says "train!" or "doggy!"  In the mornings if he hears the cabinets open or water running, he sits straight up and says "Daddy!"

22.  Kellan's new way of saying bye is to wave and say "Bye!  See you!"...although its usually after we have already gone.  When we were on a walk this week he told every car that passed "Bye!  See you!"

23.  Kellan is constantly looking and asking for "Papa"...a lot of time he just asks for him out of the blue (we're not sure which one, that's what he calls both of our dads and Michael's grandpa).  He has also started saying "grandma."  I think this is coming from one morning when he stayed with his Great-Grandma Grizzard while I went to the doctor.

His artwork with Great-Grandma and Aunt Tina :)
24.  He sometimes calls his daddy "Michael" when he's not around.  Where does that come from?!

25.  Kellan still has to have a blankie and rubbing the tag between his fingers in order to fall asleep.  He always has a paci too but I'm not sure if that's a necessity...I'm just not brave enough to take it away to find out yet.

26.  It is still a struggle to change his diaper or put his clothes on.  He loves to run around the house with no clothes on saying "naked! naked!" and wanting me to chase him.  He wiggles and bucks and kicks his legs.  He absolutely HATES to have Desitin put on him during diaper changes.  He screams like its burning.  

27.  Another of Kellan's new frequently used words is "coming."  We always have told him that Elmo was coming when he is waiting on a video to download.  Somehow that has translated to everything.  When he is waiting on his breakfast in the morning he chants "nana coming?" " 'cado coming?"  Everyone or something is always "coming."

Here are a few more pictures from this month:

Kellan loves bath time and bath toys.  He especially loves the Penguin from my Aunt Tracie.  It sings to him and the baby penguins dive into the water :)
He loves to pull everything off of mommy's nightstand...everyday.
He was not happy with mommy at the doctor's office when he had to get his flu shot.
He hates shots so much (and mommy does too) so I took him to Panera to get a cookie afterwards.

Kellan loves to brush his own teeth (he does not care for us to help).  I am constantly having to take away our toothpaste because he sucks on the open end.  We had to baby proof the bathroom drawer to keep him from getting it.  One day when I was brushing my teeth this is what I found.  I guess he figured shampoo is just as good as toothpaste :/  So I pulled him out of the wet shower and went back to brushing my teeth.
Then I heard the bathtub water turn he is wetting his toothbrush...

And then brushing...*sigh* never a dull moment with this one in the house.
Eating a cup of strawberry ice cream at Baskin Robbins BEFORE dinner.  This won't happen again for a looooong time.  He acted crazy for the rest of the night.
One of Kellan's new words is "march."  This is him marching in the backyard one afternoon.
We have had a few really nice weather days so Kellan and I tried to take advantage of them.  Here he is loving his swing.  I couldn't capture all of the shrieks and giggles in a picture :)  He loves to be outside and asks to go " 'side" even when its dark out.
Appropriately golfing OUTSIDE instead of his usual inside.
And mommy pulling him in his wagon.
It is so hard to believe that in one more month my little buddy will be one and a half!  I love this little guy so much and I treasure every minute I get to spend with him :)

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

We celebrated St. Patrick's Day a day early at an oyster roast.  There are not many foods that I love more than a good oyster.  I love them raw the best but I can't have them while I'm pregnant so I settled for the steamed.  Michael and I both ate waaaaay too many and Kellan even had one or two.  He was more into the fried fish, cornbread, and hush puppies though.  Kellan had an awesome time throwing sticks into the woods with another little boy that he met named Benjamin.  

Less talking daddy...just point me to the food...

He hadn't found any food yet but he did find his Great Papa :)

Don't even THINK about taking my fish or cornbread

This was our fourth or fifth pile...I lost count somewhere during the eating...

This little boy LOVES to be outside and he had such a good time running around and exploring...thank goodness Gigi and Carol were there to chase him so that Michael and I could spend more time eating :)

Playing with Benjamin in the leaves...he loves finding older kids to play with and he is not shy at all.  If he spots another child, he just walks right over and joins in whatever they are doing.  I even saw him take a few swipes at poor Benjamin with a stick!  Where does he get this behavior from???!!
Of course I have to have a little St. Patrick's decor around the house!  Its not much but its the little things that make me happy :)

My Skittles rainbow creation...thank you Pinterest :)

What holiday is complete without seasonal dish towels?

And to finish up this post here is my little leprechaun from last St. Patrick's Day.  It breaks my heart to see how much he has grown up in just one short year :(

I hope everyone has a great St. Patrick's Day and at the very least I hope you wear a little green!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Happiness Project

I finished reading a book called The Happiness Project about a month ago.  It was recommended by a blogger that I follow and her post made me interested in checking it out.  While we were in Oregon at Powell's Books I went in search of it and luckily they had a copy.  Actually it probably wasn't lucky.  This was the same bookstore that takes up an entire city block...I'm willing to bet if you can think of a title they have a copy in there somewhere.

Anyway, I started reading it recently and after finishing I highly recommend it.  The author, Gretchen Rubin, clearly states that this book is not meant to help someone who is depressed or even genuinely UNhappy.  She wrote this book mainly to tell about her "Happiness Project" over the course of a year.  At the very beginning of the book she says that she wasn't unhappy with her life.  She loved her job, had a great marriage, and two wonderful, healthy daughters.  Her main concern was that even though she had these amazing blessings she found herself being too negative, complaining too much, and letting lots of little, nagging problems take away from her happiness.  She wasn't as happy as she SHOULD be or COULD be.

She focused on one "resolution" per month and by the end of the year she had twelve resolutions put in motion.  At the end of the year she began to wonder why she had started the project in the first place.  Her husband's thought was one that I can totally relate to in my own life.  He said, " I think this happiness project is all about you trying to get more control over your life."  That one statement resonated with me more than anything else that she said in the entire book.  Feeling like you do not have control over your own life is a sure fire way to lose happiness.  After reading each month of her experiences I found more resolutions than not that I could see trying out in my own life.

She started her project in January and I started a much "looser" version of my own project in March.  Each of her months had one main resolution with several goals to help her keep it.  For example, her January resolution was "Boost Energy" and her goals were:  Go to sleep earlier, Exercise better, Toss, restore, organize, Tackle a nagging task, and Act more energetic.

This was a fabulous chapter and through the majority of it I found myself thinking "Oh my gosh, I so need to do all of this!!!" and "Yes!  That takes away from my happiness too!"  When I thought about it I realized that there are so many tiny, little, nagging things in your day to day life that zap tiny little bits of your energy but over time really wear on you.  The main overall goal of Mrs. Rubin's project was to figure out what those little, nagging happiness suckers are, change them, fix them, or replace them with things that GIVE happiness.

These were her resolutions for the year:

January- Boost Energy (Vitality)
February-Remember Love (Marriage)
March-Aim Higher (Work)
April-Lighten Up (Parenthood)
May-Be Serious About Play (Leisure)
June-Make Time for Friends (Friendship)
July-Buy Some Happiness (Money)
August-Contemplate the Heavens (Eternity)
September-Pursue a Passion (Books)
October-Pay Attention (Mindfulness)
November-Keep a Contented Heart (Attitude)
December-Boot Camp Perfect (Happiness)

All of her resolutions did not apply to my life and sometimes even if I could relate to the resolution, I would set different goals to go about accomplishing it.  She did tons of reading and research during each month and even made herself Resolutions Charts to assess her progress each day.  I haven't gone all out to use the charts and I definitely don't have the time to do lots of reading and research.  For me, I'm not all that interested in the research and studies.  For the most part I KNOW what is zapping my energy and happiness on a daily basis...its just a matter of taking the time to do something about them.  I do see the value of setting a resolution and goals per month and finding some way to document it so that you actually stick to it.  My version of this is going to be blogging about it at the end of the month.  I don't have all of my resolutions formally mapped out for each month but I have a general idea of the big goals that I know I want to work on.  I'm being a little lenient with myself because not only am I 7 months pregnant but I'm also chasing a toddler.  My main goal for myself is to be aware of "happiness zappers" and do a little bit each day to fix them.  If I can accomplish that I will feel successful.

I highly, highly recommend this book if you can relate to anything that I've described.  I'll be posting about my first "resolution" and what I learned during March in a couple of weeks!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Weekend at Mimi and Papa's House

Kellan and I spent the weekend with my parents a couple of weeks ago.  My sister and brother-in-law had gone on a cruise so my nephew and niece were staying at Mimi and Papa's house.  We hadn't seen anyone from my family since Christmas so we decided to go visit while Owen and Eden were there too.  The cousins had so much fun but my mom and I were worn out.  Owen is 3, Kellan is 16 months, and Eden is 14 months.  Those three together means someone always needs to be changed, pulled out of the toilet, fed, entertained, read to, put down for a nap, bathed, or just snuggled.  They definitely kept us busy even though we just hung around the house.  Getting those three packed up and loaded into the car seemed more trouble than it was worth so we just let them play and watch movies.  Here are a few pictures from our weekend.

The iPad and the iPhone were very popular this weekend.  Kellan loves to watch Elmo videos and click from app to app.  It is amazing to me what he already knows how to do...he's an expert "swiper" already.

Watching the Cars "moodie" with Owen.  Kellan was fighting a nap but he refused to give up.

Snuggling with Scout didn't even make him give in to sleep.  Yes he is wearing Santa pj's in March.  If it fits, we wear it...just not in public :)

I was giving Kellan a bath and Eden was all but jumping in with her clothes on.  I'm not kidding, this girl was hanging over the side.  She played in the back while I gave Kellan a bath and then Mimi took over.

"Excuse me.  He's splashing me."

"Oh hey long have you been back there?"

Playing "Go Fish!" with Mimi.  Eden was good at catching fish...

Kellan insisted on "fishing" his way.

"You guys are making this way too hard.  Just pick them up with your hands!"

Eden sneaking a hug sitting in Papa's old rocking chair.

Kellan rocking and watching T.V.

Eden started off being completely willing to share her she is handing Kellan a fish.

Until someone got a little greedy...

and just started to help himself.  Poor Eden.  Look at that face.  "Can't someone stop this kid.  He's eating all of my fish!"

Mimi gave Kellan a bath the next night and he got the full salon treatment.  He got all lotioned up and his hair dried and styled.  He's thoroughly enjoying himself :)

And one picture with Papa before bedtime.  I wish I had time to use my camera to get a better picture but with these three you just have to grab whatever is available.  No one stays in one place long so I just used my phone while the opportunity was there.
We had so much fun and can't wait to see everybody Easter weekend in Charleston, SC...and especially Aunt Jessie and Uncle Shannon since we missed them this time!