Friday, March 23, 2012

Writing and babies

I'M behind in posting again. I know, I know. ITS been a busy week. 
DID YOU KNOW Anika turned ONE this past week? SHE DID! I will post more about that later.
BUT for now, Andrew got her this little cheap toy...my mom said it was too old for her....




And, NO- NOT my Baby. My parents gave Anika an American Girl Bitty Baby...it was a big hit.  She LOVES her baby. She puts it in the baby swing and then puts a blanket on it and says Nigh nigh.  I wonder where she learned to be so maternal! NOT from me! lol.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

WINNER and stuff, like a Birthday!


That was my attempt to get Anika to Pick a winner. ha.
Anyway, I picked the one she dropped closest to me, and the name is...
DANIELLE!   Danielle, email me :) you win the Amazon gift card my friend.
(I just watched this video and she looks like a complete brat, but she isnt...well, actually she has kind of turned into one lately...) We need to start cracking down since she is almost ONE!!

Last week was my Birthday.  The day started out when I went in Anika's room, I found a card on her changing table. 

It was from Anika.  It said that my birthday was awesome like the same day I had her.
Then, I went downstairs and there was a card from Andrew on the kitchen counter. It was also telling me how awesome I am :)

These next photos are out of order from my birthday, but worth mentioning,..you know, since I loaded the photos from my camera card and I need something to do with them! lol.  I cant put them on FB.

I ruined our dining room table...with my cleaner and I scrubbed too hard with the brush.  Luckily this table was a hand me down, or I would have been A LOT MORE upset.

So, it used to look like above...
We made a quick fix by taking out a leaf or 2 and put a table cloth from our wedding on it. ...
I hate when Andrew leaves his jacket on the chair, by the way.

It works for now...One day we will get a whole new set...ONE day.
This was from a girls brunch a few weeks ago....Just thought I would post my outfit. ha

Piri likes to smell me.


This was a dress I got at TJ max for $15 and wanted to wear in our family photos....So I had Andrew take a pic to see how I looked in it.

Or this one...(I was going with blue)

 We had our family photo shoot this past weekend, and I wore the first option.  I brought jeans and a top as well, but never changed into them.

Ok, back to my Birthday...

I left work a little early and came home to hang with Anika.
Andrew brought me home some flowers....And he brought a little bouquet home for Anika.  HE said he waned to be the first to buy her flowers.  SWEET. She grabbed a daisy, pulled it off the stem, and tried to eat it.


Andrew's other gift to me is to pay for the rest of the photos.
Then, my mom took Anika for the night and Andrew and I went to meet a couple friends for dinner at a place that does a special Wine Down Wednesday...all bottles of wine are half off.  When we walked in, there were MORE friends than I expected.... a bit of a surprise!  I guess my friend Anna had tried planning the surprise, but then I kept inviting people anyway :) Some had told me they couldn't come, but they were there. I got some awesome presents too.  It was a good time and since Anika was at my moms for the night...I had a lot of wine :)   It was VERY hard getting up the next day. This was the 3rd night Anika has stayed at my mom's house.




My man.  This guy has been awesome.  Just wanted to say that!
This is way out of order, but its from LAST weekend when we were skiing. Anika likes to get in people's ski bags and pull hats out. She is obsessed with the word hat and hats. Our friend put her in the ski bag. ha.
--
Other updates...
Lets see.  Free range/grass fed meat is getting expensive! I cant get away from spending any less than $200 a week on groceries.  I am trying to cut down our meat and fish consumption and make more vegetarian dishes.  I'M cool with that, but Andrew likes more substance. He is not a fan of lentils and beans.  My friend Lauren gave me some recipes and the veggie burger recipe is a hit. It took me a LONG time to get through it (A lot of steps and a lot of time) but they were GOOD!  She had given me a couple she made to sample first ;) This past week, my bill was way down! I also stopped buying a few other things.
It is also really hard to avoid dairy....for Andrew and I...so we haven't been! lol.  I just try not to overdo it. 
Anika is enjoying coconut milk yogurt... A LOT.  I bought every last one on my grocer's shelf! They stopped selling it,  so I bought the rest and have frozen some.

Anika had a week of separation anxiety. Cried every day when I left her at the sitter. IT seemed to be getting better by the end of last week, so lets hope it does!!

Andrew has been doing really well. I got an email from an old blog friend last week! She has IC and I even COMMENTED on one of her posts a couple years ago when she wrote about it! I never put it together.  She wrote me a really sweet email and I shared it with Andrew. Again, the blogging community is just amazing.  Andrew has cut out a lot of foods and he has been drinking a lot more water. He still goes to a lot of doctors, but he is between "flares" right now.  It sounds like people with IC can go years between flares, so lets just hope that it is a VERY long time! 

I leave you with this video...totally not safe, but I thought it was funny.  We don't really put Anika in font of the tv often, but I have tried to get her to watch baby signing time a few times....we watch it with her and do the signs too.  She usually loses interest though.  Well, Andrew gave her this old infant seat to sit in to watch....I walked away and she was sitting in it watching (Which shocked me). I came back from the kitchen and she was CLIMBING!  She just wont sit....HAS to be moving. lol.

I said excuse you, because she farted.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

THIS story is AMAZING. AN Ode to my Imaginary Friends!!

Wait until you see where this story goes!  It truly is special.  I’m sorry it will take a lot of writing to get to the end, but DON’T skip ahead!  THIS IS FOR YOU Imaginary Friends, THIS IS FOR YOU! (For new people, Andrew calls my internet friends Imaginary)

My freshmen year of college (At a Big University in Boston) I was randomly assigned to my roommate. Her name was Erin.   We were roomies for years. Then we didn’t live together for a couple. (Our programs were 5 years, all year round though, so not a typical 4 year experience).  Then after college, we lived together again with 2 other girls.  Erin had studied abroad in Italy. I had studied abroad in New Zealand during college.  I met Andrew in NZ.  Erin met lots of people, but one became our roommate, Anne and we found another girl on CL named Sam so we could live in this HUGE awesome 4 bedroom place. (Anne and Sam dont really play a role in this story but they are both awesome). Erin also met Another girl in Italy, Ally, but I didnt meet her until much later.  I got engaged to Andrew in May, 2006 when he was visiting me from NZ for 3 months. He had to go back to NZ and I had just graduated college and accepted a job offer in the city.  I moved in with the girls in September, 2006.  Andrew was in NZ and I was in Boston- we were long distance for 9 months.  I went over to visit him once in those 9 months for 2 weeks.  Here in the States, I was working and planning our wedding (with LOTS of help from my mom). I lived in Boston, but the wedding would take place in NH where my parents live. 
  Andrew came back over to the US for good on a fiancĂ© visa in March, 2007. We got married in May, 2007.  Erin was a bridesmaid.  Shortly after we got married, I left Boston and came to NH to live with Andrew. He did not like the city.  He loved where I grew up. I DID NOT WANT To come back, as you all know.
  
Erin, Anne and Sam replaced me with a new girl.  I still went down and visited them all the time.  We used to have some kick ass parties!

In September, 2008 Erin had a going away party.  Andrew and I went down of course.  She was moving to Austin. Her boyfriend of many years had already moved there for a job.  AT the going away party, one of her friends from Italy,
Ally, drove up from Princeton for the party.  Ally was a very energetic and out going person.  My first impression- she was smart and preppy!  She was Also very bubbly. She started to tell us about a blog she started! I had not even really heard of blogs!  I was intrigued.
After that party, I started reading
Ally’s blog.  This was back in fall of 2008 remember.
Actually, she had a different blog back then.  Through
Ally’s blog I found one called 3 Peanuts.  I read her ENTIRE blog  in 2 nights!  I stayed up reading.  I LOVED IT. Then through her I found more, and through a comment on Ally’s blog I found MCW .   Through MCW, I found DSS  and Dee . I was in NYC for a bachelorette party in December, 2009 and actually MET up with MCW!  And Summer  . (I was drunk though).  

I Decided to start my OWN blog in May, 2009 when we were about to rescue our first dog (Piri) and BUY our first house together! (I cant remember if I found MCW before or right after I started my own blog, but I know I was ONE of her first readers, after Ally).  I blogged over on my first blog until a little bit after I had Anika.  Ive explained why I had to move sites.

Before I go further I do want to mention another blogger, Ashley
 
http://livingandlovinginthemidwest.blogspot.com/
 I don’t know where she fits in and how we “Met” but she is SUPER kick ass because she made Anika THESE !! JUST Because. As A GIFT! The poor girl wanted to make them while I was pregant, but we didnt have a name until After Anika was born!
ANd, just so you can see how AWESOME the detail really is...THEY MATCH ANIKA's BEDDING AND DECAL!!

(we never did use those pretty bumpers)

COOL, huh??  THEN, Ashley and Jamie  both emailed me last week when they saw MODG (I wont link her because I think everyone already reads her anyway) posted something about a pill that people take for IC!  (The disease Andrew has).  They immediately thought of me and let me know!  I mean, come on people- HOW awesome is that? There are so many other AMAZING blogging friends too…but I cant link everyone.   Just know, I love you all.

This is funny-MCW is one of my favorite blog buds.  The other day I asked her a question about monograms and responded to her  “Thanks Prep” and she responded “You’re welcome Hippie”  HAHA.   All my long time readers KNOW I did not start out this way! 
Are you still following?? Because this GETS better! The connections I have made. Someone the other day said "A friend was once a stranger"  Um, Yes!
 So, I don’t know who found who but
Jenny and I found each other through MCW. Jenny and I bonded because we both rescued dogs. She has  2 now though.   MCW and Jenny were my closest blog buds for a long time.  Jenny DB sent Anika some darling leg warmers as a gift when I was pregnant.    When I planning my natural birth and talking about breast feeding class, etc.  on the blog (My old blog)  JENNY DB  emailed me and told me to check out THIS BLOG. Owned by Brittany Ann.  Brittany Ann was also pregnant and talked about natural birth, cloth diapers and such. 

Jenny had watched her mom have her brother at home so she was cool with all this crazy natural shit. Brittany Ann was due with a girl a couple months behind me. SHE Also seemed to exercise through her pregnancy which is something I did too. If you all remember I was on my spin bike up until 42 weeks….ew, remember that picture I posted and my ass hid the seat? 

 Anyway, I got a comment on my blog one day from ANOTHER Brittany.  http://lessonsinlifeandlight.wordpress.com/
  She saw one of my comments on Brittany Ann’s blog. 
Brittany H WAS also pregnant with a baby girl due around the same time as the other Brittany! She was also doing hypnobirthing like me (actually, she did hypnobabies Which is like hynpnobirthing. They teach Hypnobirthing in New England because the founder is from New Hampshire).    It was kind of weird “meeting” these girls through blogging because I had no idea there was such a huge group of bloggers into all the same stuff I was!  Both girls definitely put a LOT more out there on their blogs for their readers and used lots of fancy terms I had no idea existed!  They were both VERY passionate!  Brittany H had a ton of links on her blog full of resources.  She wanted to teach others and I thought that was great.  
Fast forward....and We all had our baby girls. 

In November, 2011, Brittany H asked me and the other Brittany if we wanted to be part of an on line Mom Group where the moms were into natural parenting. Ive touched on that group here before. (Hippie moms).   I want to add here, I have never been a part of ANY other mom group. I have my "Blog friends" and twitter, but no on line mom groups until HM.
After being in the group for a while, one girl pulled on my heart strings.   I told you how I  had an idea to raise money for one member of the group because she wanted an Ergo carrier and had been to hell and back with her breast feeding struggles.   Well, with Natalie's help,  we raised  so much money in the first hour,  that we were able to KEEP giving to MORE moms!  There have been a ton of other gifts given. We call it the Hippie Fairy fund because the recipients are always surprised with their gifts. 

I have been helping SURPRISE other moms with one of the members, Natalie (mentioned before and above).   Natalie lives in CA and we have become close as well.  It started with texting but we even talk on the phone too.  When I heard her voice for the first time, It was exactly what I expected.  It is such a familiar voice as well, which is weird, huh?  Anyway…I AM GETTING TO THE EXCITING PART!!

THIS WEEK though, GUESS WHO WAS SURPRISED?
YES. ME!!  The Hippie Moms wanted to do something for MY FAMILY since we have been dealing with Andrew’s sickness.  I guess they have been thinking and thinking of what to do.   They even contacted my MOM through Facebook to ask what we may want or need.   (The moms in the group are all over the country). My mom knows about the group because I talk about it a lot.   My mom of course kept what she knew a secret from me. She had been asking me what I wanted for my birthday OVER and over, which I thought was weird. 
There is one thing I have been wanting to do.  GET Professional Photographs taken of Anika and us as a family!   LIKE- REAL professional photos!  There is one lady I have had my eye on for a while. ..since I was pregnant. I saw a segment on the NH Chronicle with her photographing babies and kids. I had stalked her website  a lot, but I assumed she was expensive.   We had ANika’s newborn photos taken by  someone recommended to me that was VERY cheap.   I won’t go into that more because I think you all remember what happened when I talked about that on my old blog (IF you are new here and want to know, please comment or email and I will email you what happened, but I don’t want it on here). 

Anyway, I told Andrew right after the newborn photos that I wanted to do REAL professional  photos for Anika’s 1st Birthday gift.   (And, I turn 29 in March too so it could be my gift too). I warned him it would be costly.  Well,  a few weeks ago I started contact with the photographer I wanted.   We made a few tentative appointments.  Then I got  some of her pricing and Andrew kind of freaked. I TOTALLY understood why with him being sick and out of work and all, but I was upset. REally upset.

LONG story short (Because this is getting way longer than I intended) THIS WEEK, I got an email with the subject line “The Hippie Fairies Love you” I started to shake a bit…my heart rate was going up…OMG!  I opened up the email (it was through paypal) and…$200.00 was put into my paypal account. The message said “We have been trying to figure out what to do for you and your family for some time, & we even contacted your mom for help and suggestions! She is wonderful and was so excited to be our co-conspirator. It's not a lot, but we wanted to give you this money toward your family photo shoot. We Love You!”I mean- I have tingles again just thinking about it! Can you friggen believe it!!??   A lot of gifts go to families  that are in a lot more need than we are, so at first I felt guilty and bad that I got this gift to go towards such a luxury.  But, even my mom (Who thought the photographer was WAYY too excessive when I first told her about wanting to use her)  told me with everything I had going on with Andrew and taking care of it all, I deserved it!  And,  Brittany H who I mentioned above- she is a professional photographer and her site is here. http://brittanyhobbsphotography.com/ She told me that the prices were reasonable and explained why REAL artists charge that much. She even helped me look at a few others in my area,  but said to go with the one I've had my eye on. She said her work is good. 
Andrew has agreed to pay the rest as our birthday gifts!
SO…OUR big shoot is NEXT Saturday, the 17th! I CANT WAIT.  
I'M getting teary now.   Can you BELIEVE that ONE BLOG (Ally) lead to ALL OF THIS?? 
  Or, to get technical- A RANDOM roommate my college assigned to me,  that became one of my BEST FRIENDS started all of this. That roommate taught me A LOT about myself and about life in general. Before this blog world existed, I already KNEW she was put into my life for a reason! A BIG reason.

Sometimes I just want to pinch myself.  My mom even told Natalie that she is so proud that I have always had such great friends around me (She meant real life friends) but this is no different.  I might not KNOW most of you in real life, but WOW- the friendships are REAL!   As you know, Andrew calls you Imaginary Friends…always has. There is NO denying that THIS feeling and THESE gifts are NOT imaginary!  And, its not just the material gifts. It’s the SUPPORT  you guys have given me. Through the BIRTH OF MY DAUGHTER!  I mean, come on- MCW and My other real life Bestie, Carolyn, were the only friends who knew I was in labor for a LONG time. MCW announced it on here for me! You guys have been here Through Andrew’s sickness…The support is  amazing. I feel SO truly blessed.  And, I know some of my real life friends read, And I LOVE YOU too, but you already know that !!
AND, THANK YOU HIPPIE MOM FAIRIES FOR THIS GIFT!!!
You know what else is awesome. The same girl I wanted to help with the ergo, she started the idea of wanting to help me when Andrew was sick! Um, HOW COOL!? FULL CIRCLE!

And,  I want to give back. 
I am giving away a $20.00 Amazon Gift Card. I love amazon because you can buy BOOKS (Anika loves books), you can buy baby stuff, fun stuff, vitamins, etc. You can buy anything there.
SO,  ANY of my OLD readers, NEW readers, Hippie Mom Friends, REAL life friends- ANY OF YOU. And, if you are a blog friend and I didn’t link you up, its not because I don’t love you! I was just telling a story. Lol.   YOU CAN all Enter. Just leave a comment (if you cant figure out how to leave a comment, then just email me kiwisandcocktails AT gmail.com)
 

Friday, March 9, 2012

WHOOPS

MY Last Post got all tangled up when it got published.
paragraphs out of order..sentences in the wrong place.

I think its fixed, so SORRY if you read it in reader when it was all yucky.
IF you dont know what IM talking about.
GO HERE for A story I love.
http://tripleaandp.blogspot.com/2012/03/this-story-is-amazing-ode-to-my.html

Monday, March 5, 2012

Being a Mom. My way.

I had my championship race for one league this past weekend. I actually MISSED a gate and had to hike up to make it...and SOMEHOW because the course was THAT bad, I STILL got first! haha.  A guy on my team i usually beat, beat me by 3 seconds though! ugh.  I ended up in 1st for females,  so I guess thats all that matters.


I think this post is going to cover a lot. I have a lot going through my head…from my aww of the type of dad Andrew is, to the shitty things I have done. My own guilt, but also why I think being a mom is easier on me…and the type of parent I am…or think I am. And why getting alone time contributes to that...and its a GOOD thing. I have FOUND the balance I want.

Speaking of guilt though. Ani got her finger caught in the door the other day. The side the hinge is on. Daddy shut the door to feed Piri and her finger was in there!! I guess she screamed for an hour and lost some skin but has been fine ever since. (I wasnt there).  She is one tough little girl. I remember shutting my finger in a door and I cried all day and night!  If she claps her hands and hits the boo boo, she will cry...poor baby.  Daddy felt really bad. THe next day, I saw skin in the door. I took a photo, but I wont show it here. 
Poor thing. So, here is Anika's FIRST band.aid. (above)

Just thought I would update on something first. The whole EC thing… You know giving Anika the opportunity to go on the little potty whenever I go potty at home. Or, if she is acting like she has to poop, we put her on the potty (it started as a way to save ourselves from washing poopy diapers). Well, after I wrote about that on her 11 month post, she stopped doing it. She won’t sit on her potty. She just gets up and walks away….or runs away. This morning she stood up right after we both sat down and ran into her room naked. I finished up my business and followed her in. She looked at me, smiled and lifted her leg to pee on the rug. So, obviously she had to go! We were never “Training” her so, I just let it go. She has always liked sitting on her potty, but I guess not now. I just thought I would put that update on here. NO potty on the potty for Anika right now.
I think its more about giving her the opportunity to not sit in soiled diapers…but at the same time, Anika has NEVER minded a dirty diaper. When she was a newborn I always forgot to change them because I assumed she would get fussy when she needed a change, but she never did! Lol. I'm not proud of that, by the way. She doesn’t usually poop at night, but the other night I went in her room at midnight when I went to bed, just to check on her and I smelled poop bad. I assumed it was a dirty one in the pail that I didn’t rinse well. Nope, the next morning she had a big poopy diaper she was in all night. Whoops.
-
The other night we were skyping with Andrew’s dad. We were talking about something…and then Andrew said “Dad, can you believe her (Talking about me). When I first started dating her she was a Republican wearing a suit and now look at her- she is a hippie” HA. I think it’s pretty safe to say, I have definitely tried a LOT of new things since becoming a parent. I mean, the breast feeding and cloth diapering were ALWAYS things I knew I would do. That’s how my mama did it, so I just assumed that was how I would. BUT, I never knew I would breast feed for this long…until a couple months into it. I mean, I didn’t even know a baby required formula or bm for the first year of life until I was pregnant! I just didn’t know many of these things because I didn’t need to. My friend always talked about her friend who breast fed her kids until 2 years old and I used to think “GROSS” or I thought hippies were all dirty, hairy people!
I STILL wear my expensive make-up (I don’t buy as much myself anymore, but ask for it for xmas!) and I still get my hair dyed. I still like wine and vodka, but don’t get to drink it as often. I still love to watch garbage tv like all the Real Housewives (minus Atlanta- that one annoys me).
I still love to Go OUT! I Think this might make me different from others. I know it’s hard for a lot of breast feeding moms, but since ANika has gone to a sitter since she was 10 weeks old, she takes a bottle. I am able to pump.
I haven’t hid the fact, that becoming a mom hasn’t been a big challenge to me. I think there are a lot of things that contribute to this.
1. I thought a baby was going to be so insanely hard. In my head, I made it out to be a lot worse than it is. I told Andrew for years I wasn’t ready. It looked like a lot of hard work. I said I was too selfish.
Granted, I might just have an easy baby. And with that being said, maybe God knows what I can handle and what I can’t. We also waited a bit and got on our feet. We were married 4 years before Anika was born. We both had steady jobs,we had savings,  and we owned a house first.
2. I have a very supportive husband. It is no secret that he is the better parent between the two of us. He would NEVER play on his computer or cell phone while watching Anika. Or watch TV for that matter. Unless she was napping. He PLAYS with her and reads to her and takes her on walks!! It’s amazing how many things she has learned being home with him. She knows if she brings a book to Dada, he will stop what he is doing and read it to her. He can get her to eat or try anything. My mom always told me to find a guy to marry that loved children, and boy oh boy, This guy doesn’t just LOVE his kid, he shows it! She always comes first-  no tv, no phone, no facebook- ITS ALL about her. When he has her, he doesn’t let a messy house distract him like I do. I always see something that needs to be cleaned or laundry that needs to be put away. He lets that stuff wait until she is in bed. I need to be more like that. Last night I took her up to get ready for bed. When she walked in her room, she started playing with something. Once she started playing, I sat in the rocker and started checking my phone! A good 5 minutes went by and I didn’t say a word to her…she just played while I was on the phone. Andrew even yelled up “IS she sleeping? Feeding? Why so quiet?” Ya, I put my phone down and realized what an asshole I was being. I mean, sure independent play is great and she does it so well, but I WAS at work all day. I only get a little time with her at night- why was I not DOWN on the floor engaging with her? Gosh, I felt bad. I am not always that bad, but I have been a little lately and I feel bad.
3. That brings me to the next. IM at work all day, so that leaves little time for her to drive me crazy. There is no time for it. On weekends, I go do the grocer y shopping. I could leave her with Andrew, but I choose not to. Sometimes we all go but most of the times just the two of us. We go to the farmers market too. This past weekend we went to Lowes and I let her walk the whole time in the store. The stuff on low shelves there are big so she cant just take everything off like in the craft store. She LOVED the light and ceiling fan displays. She looked at those for a long time. Doing errands is so much more exciting than sitting at our boring house reading the same book over and over hahaha. Well, it is more exciting for me, and she seems to agree. I love to bring her with me. I love to interact with her out and about. She loves to “Talk” to others. WE also bring her to my races or wherever we go. I go stir crazy if I am home all day and night, so I always find little adventures to bring Anika on.
4. I have VERy supportive parents only a half hour away. And, I mean, my mom will do anything. I was able to ski race on 2 leagues this winter with the help of Andrew (and when he was working or sick) my mom would drive over and watch her at the ski areas while I raced. My mom thinks it’s good for me to race, so she makes it happen.
5. When Andrew is home and not sick, I will go out with my girls. The past two Thursday nights I have gone out for dinner and drinks after my ski races. Yup. I don’t even have to ask…Andrew knows I have friends, he knows I am social, and he would rather stay home anyway. Also, I’ve gone to a couple girls only brunches in the past few months. Andrew actually WOULD like to go to brunch, so we might go as a family soon. Sure, I miss my baby, but getting time to ME is good for all of us. It’s good for me, it’s good for Andrew, and it’s good for Anika. Andrew will even meet me with Anika so I can nurse her before heading out for the night (on race nights)! Yes, we make it work and its awesome.
Usually Andrew and I bring ANka out with us, BUT if we wanted a night alone without Anika, we could get one easily…and we know that option is always there. I think that helps too.

I know a lot of moms feel guilty leaving their babies to get alone time. I don’t. Anika is one well adjusted little girl. She loves her friends, she loves her sitter, she loves her Nona and Grampa…and she loves her parents. She has not had any sort of separation anxiety from us (yet). IF she screamed and missed me, it would be a different story.
Going to work or having alone time is something I have never felt guilty about. There are A LOT of things that would have been easier if I DIDN’T work. Like, breast feeding would have been easier (Pumping can cause supply issues) , doing EC would have been easier if I didn’t work. Feeding Anika the way I wanted to would have been easier, so I guess working is the CAUSE of things that have caused guilt.
I am guilty that I supplemented with formula for a while (When I was at work) even though I probably didn’t really have to. She didn’t really NEED more like I thought, and I could have done more to get my pumping production up. I feel guilty that she had rice cereal so early. I feel guilty that we introduced solids so early…Those things probably wouldn’t have happened if I was a SAHM.
I am guilty that I let Anika cry (not fuss, but CRY) in her crib for 20 minutes when she was only 7 weeks old because someone told me to. Not only did it feel incredibly unnatural, but then I read how damaging CIO can be. I should have trusted my instincts, I really should have. I am guilty that she fell down the basement stairs on MY watch….that I didn’t watch her better. I have guilt over a few other things I fed her that I wish I didn’t. The old saying goes “Know Better. DO Better” and I have and I will in the future.

I dont have a lot of guilt for working because I want Anika to experience things. Without 2 incomes, we wouldn't be able to get ahead. I want her to have a college account so she doesnt have a ton of student debt.   We wouldn't be able to contribute so much to her savings account if we didn't both work.  I want to have money for her to ski or to dance, or soccer or whatever sport she wants to do.
 I don’t have guilt over: taking time for myself. I go to the gym most mornings before work and that makes me a happier, fitter mom. I have not been sick all winter and I KNOW exercise contributes to that. The healthier I am, the better I can take care of Anika. Also, I want her to KNOW that exercise is important, and I think we set a good example of that in our family. I pick and choose what I do for social gatherings. I get invited out a lot and I do turn many things down…so I don’t just go to everything and out every night of the week, obviously. Balance. I find the balance. Andrew is on the mend right now…actually he is doing really well and Thank you guys for the prayers. I really think they helped, I really do. Let’s continue to pray that he doesn’t have any flare ups for a LONG LONG time.

I guess what I want to say here, is that I think ALL moms- SAHM or Working moms NEED time to themselves. And, being at work is NOT the time I’m talking about. I have heard A LOT lately in my mom group about moms not getting time to themselves…or maybe they don’t want to take it because they will miss the baby. Trust me, until I did it, I thought I would miss Anika too much as well. And, yes, sometimes I am out and I do miss her, but I KNOW it’s good for us all. Just a couple hours out always makes me feel so good. Sure, I end up talking about Anika a lot, but we also talk about other stuff. RIGHT NOW in life, I FEEL Balanced. Balanced with work, mothering, wife’ing, exercising, socializing, housekeeping, etc. I feel good. Well, I don’t feel good about putting 3 pounds back on!! Eeks. I wanted to be to goal by Anika’s birthday and That is NOT going to happen. I need to get back on track.  But, other than that- life is good again.  Even though I have the things I have guilt over, overall, IM confident in the way I mother. I am confident in the person I am right now.  I am confident in my roles. 

This was over the weekend. Anika rode from the car to the ski lodge in style :)  Everyone was waving. Usually I wear her, but Daddy would rather pull her around in the snow. Even Andrew got on the slopes on Sunday!! It was a great family day. My parents and niece went up too. (The Mt. is 2 hours away from where we live and we had to leave SUPER early in the morning).

After my race, we stopped at a store with a big talking Moose. 

Thursday, March 1, 2012

My 11 Month old. Whoa. And what I put BM WHERE!?


Oh, Little Miss Anika.  11 Months old.  Where did the time go? No. Seriously. How did this happen?
You still like to shop with mommy. Most of the time. You do like to get down and run around stores, but I think mommy has learned her lesson about that. Better for you to be in the cart or for me to wear you in the ergo.  At first it was fun, but you like to take things off shelves and such.   Or at BJ's (Like  a costco) I was checking out and you ran to the other side of the big conveyer belt and some guy went over to you (I could see you) and told me you were trying to turn the machine off. Um, I doubt it, but I guess the guy was concerned. You are wearing LOTS of mommy's old clothes.  The purple overalls in the picture above were mine when I was a baby.

We still love Baby Led Weaning. Well, I guess at this point, all babies probably feed themselves?  I have no idea, to be honest.   You eat dinner with us most nights. Lately, you might not eat food that is on your tray,  BUT if daddy puts it on HIS plate then hands it to you...then you will eat it. THE EXACT Same food!!  You just think what we have is better, even though its the same thing! ha. You don't do that all the time but sometimes you do.  I had given up the other night and said "well, I guess you are not hungry" and then daddy showed me his little trick and voila, you ate it when it came from his plate or mine!  One food you wont turn down: chicken. You LOVE chicken. Seriously, devour it.
You are still breast fed. You still love to nurse. I still pump at work 3 times a day and you get breast milk at the sitters, or with Nona, or with Daddy. You do go on bottle strikes though sometimes and you dont want anything to do with a sippy cup and we have tried 10 kinds. You will drink out of a regular cup, but that makes a huge mess.   We have Mostly NIGHT weaned!!  I do not feed you during the night before 4 or 5 AM.  You nurse before bed time which is between 7 and 8 PM.  YOu sometimes wake up in the night, but we go peak in your door. If you are standing up in your crib, we pick you up and give you a cuddle. WE do a little cuddle for not even a minute, then place you back in the crib and you go right back to sleep.  If you were grabbing at my shirt or breasts, I would probably feed you, but you don't.  When you wake up around 5, I bring you back to bed and you nurse while I sleep.  Sometimes you fall back to sleep in my bed, but usually you don't. You usually just keep moving, so I bring you back to your crib to sleep until around 6:30 when we get up for the day. When we get up at 6:30 you and I both use the potty. I sit on the big one while you sit on the little one next to me. Then we both brush our teeth.  I would like to say we are doing elimination communication all the time, but that is not possible since I work.  I do EC at home, but its not full time. Daddy does it sometimes with you, but I think he often forgets.

This past month all the kids at Miss B's were sick with colds. You held strong for a while but then you got it.  You didn't ACT sick. You just had a runny nose and phlegm in your throat.  I ended up bringing you to the doctors because 2 of the other kids at daycare ended up with ear infections. AND, someone told me strep was going around. MY MOMMY gut told me you just had a cold and would get over it soon.  You were sleeping pretty good as well, so I didn't think you were in pain. I have never had strep or an ear infection so I guess I Just assumed you wouldn't either ;) haha. 
The dr. said you did just have a cold and a VERY minor ear infection. He said he would write a script for an antibiotic.  I asked if that was really necessary and he said not yet..and to take the script and wait a few days because it was so minor. 
I have read A LOT about treating things with breast milk. I have even used BM on your eye when it was gunky before.  I have also used it on my own zits and your scrapes and cuts.  I ended up putting drops of BM in your ear!! As well as a few drops of silver sol (A natural antibiotic) a couple times a day.  AND...in a few days, you were ALL Better.    I KINDA  told the Dr. I was going to use BM to cure you, but I think he thought just by the usual way- orally :)    I know you are almost 1, but we will NOT be weaning anytime soon.  I will probably cut down to only pumping once  a day and eventually not at all during the days, but you will be nursed morning and nights for a lot longer.  I think Mommy's Magic milk has kept you a very healthy girl. Even when you do get little colds, you are over them so quickly and you don't even act phased by them.  AND, you know what is really amazing??   Some of the immune factors in BM have been shown to increase in concentration as a baby gets older and nurses less, so older babies still receive lots of immune factors.  AND, GET THIS- The concentration of the immunologic components are HIGHER around 16-24 months of age, than at a year old!   I just want you to be as healthy as your Mom ! :)  Also, ITS JUST SO EASY!!  I love how convenient it is. And, you love it and its the only time you will cuddle with me. You are NOT a cuddler.

Hmm what else for food. Oh yes, I did give you yogurt from the farmer's market twice. Your diapers were explosions on those days.  You didn't act like it bothered you though.  After much research, daddy and I have decided that you will not eat commercial dairy. I mean, sure- IM sure you will get some at times because butter and other dairy is in a LOT of things and hard to avoid ALL the time, but we will try very hard not to include it in your diet. You will continue to get raw goats milk at times, but that is probably it for dairy.  You will also get coconut milk and almond milk during the days if you want it.  Again, we wont go crazy over it, but it is something we will try our best to avoid.

You somehow fell in the dog water bowl! haha. You were crying because I was looking all over for my phone to take a picture before I helped you out.  See that little thing in your hand? That is your little baby from your Maori doll...you didn't even let your baby go when you were stuck! how cute. haha Although you also put your baby's head in your mouth sometimes...so not sure how maternal you really are.
Speaking of baby- the little baby came in the Maori doll that your nana and poppa gave you from NZ. (Maoris are the native NZ people)

You always take the little doll out of the backpack on the bigger doll.


And sometimes daddy will "hide" it in this Melissa and Doug hammer toy in one of the holes where the peg is supposed to go and your reaction is always so funny!  YOu look at it with a face of disgust and PROMPTLY take your baby out of the hole!  You know it doesn't belong there. lol.  I'm glad you don't try to hammer it. YOu do try to hammer people's knees with the wooden hammer though... eeks. And, you have hit yourself with it before on accident.




"GIVE ME!"

Itsy bitsy spider....You love that song!


What? I cant touch the outlets?

Best Friends!

You have been getting more baths lately. Well, maybe once a week. You do enjoy baths for about 5-10 minutes,  but then you get bored, stand up at the edge, put your arms up and say "UT"  You still do showers with me most of the time.
 When I feed you on the couch, we try to keep Piri off the couch. When I say "Off Piri" you will say a word that sounds like off. 
RUN!


The shirt you have on above was also my shirt as a baby :)



This is a little set of drawers in my bedroom. It used to be in my walk in closet...but that is now your bedroom :)  This set of drawers holds make-up on the top (not the every day stuff) and jewelery on the bottom half. The Very bottom drawer is full of labeled boxes containing jewelry. You LOVE to open the drawers and then take out bangles and leave them everywhere. OR You like to shake all the boxes...which makes me cringe because I'm sure you are getting all my stuff tangled and mangled.  I didn't want to move this or tape it shut...so for 2 weeks, every time you went to it, I grabbed you and brought you to YOUR toys.  After a week, you would look at me AS YOU were opening it and i would give you a look.  You would sometimes smile and open it anyway.  I just had to stick to my guns. NOW- you don't even go over to it or touch it.  I am now working on the same thing with my night stand. I just don't want you in my night stand.  I don't care if you want to pull all the books off your book shelves, clothes out of YOUR dresser, etc. But stay away from mine! ha
We still follow the guidelines for positive discipline and I really like how its working so far. 

YOU LOVE to be read to now. You have your favorite books. At our house you always bring Growl!  Goes the Bear to us.
Nona told me you liked Brown Bear, Brown Bear at her house the other day.  That same night you went to your shelf at home and pulled Brown Bear, Brown Bear off your shelf! I didn't even know we had that book! 
At home, you bring your favorite book (Growl Goes The Bear) over to Piri and flip the pages like you are reading to her! Its hilarious.
 When you bring it to someone to read, you make a growl sound. The book has an owl and lion too and your daddy makes the best sounds.

You climb up the stairs all on your own very well, but Daddy is working on showing you how to come down safely.  You still love to pull all the spices out of the spice drawer and we find them all over.  I have tried Reading the Lorax to you to prepare for your birthday party,  but it is just too long to hold your interest.

The words you say:
Mama (It was mum mum but seems to be mama now), Dada, Nona (my mom), dog, doll, hat, bye, hi, more (Sounds more like mo) and you say "UT" as UP. And off, but it sounds more like awww. I dont know why you say UP with a T, but its so pronounced.  In the mornings lately you haven't cried but I wake up to "Mama. UT. Mama, UT. Ut. Ut" and I go in there and you are trying to climb out of your crib. You also just started saying banana. Daddy taught you that.  You try to mimic a lot of what daddy says, but not what mama says.  ( I Just read this part again- The words she does say are not all CLEAR! We know what she is saying because we just know her, but they are not all very clear and some words are not all the time) Like hat- sometimes she will say it and sometimes she wont.

Nona took you skiing. She took a video and I cant for her to get me a copy.


Your cousin R went skiing for the first time on the same day. Your cousin K is already a pro.

And that my little girl should give you a good idea of where you are at. IM sure there are so many things I am missing.  You make your daddy and I laugh every single day.  Every little inch of you is loved so much, and I KNOW you know that.  You have not experienced any separation anxiety or stranger danger, and I'M keeping my fingers crossed that we just skip that stage :)  wishful thinking? 
You have 8 teeth and you have been an incredible teether. I do give credit to your amber teething necklace. You have worn it every day since you were 3 months old.
My guess is that you weight 19 pounds. You wear 9-12 month clothes right now.  You are still wearing hand me downs and clothes that were gifts. I have only bought you a few leggings here and there and a dress or 2 that I couldn't resist. We are SOO lucky with clothes and shoes. 
Oh, and naps. Still doing 2 naps a day. All together they are about 3.5  hours added up.  The morning one is USUALLY longer.