Friday, November 29, 2013

TGIF! 5 Things.

We haven't really celebrated Thanksgiving yet.  Yesterday we went to my father-in-law's but we never really feast there.  Today will be the first real celebration at my mom's house!  So excited!  Check out this Thanksgiving throwback.  I love that little turkey!

I think we have finally chosen a name for Baby2.  I feel like our list was always either a mile long or non-existent.  And of course there were VERY few names we could completely agree upon.  I'm not quite ready to announce but hopefully soon!  I'll give you a clue, it's not Hashtag.  ;)

When I get back from vacation I want to bake, bake, bake!  I have a few recipes that I always save for December and I can't wait to make them!  Buckeyes and Peanut Butter Blossoms, anyone?!  :)

I tried so hard to convince Nick to put up our tree before we left for Florida but he's a stubborn guy.  I hope he knows it's going up the second we come home.  Nothing can cure the winter blues (especially after leaving sunny Florida) better than a glowing Christmas tree!

I feel like I have so much that I want to do in December I may need to make a December bucket list!  Visit Santa, go to the zoo lights, decorate for Christmas, bake a million cookies, listen to Christmas music, watch a holiday movie or much fun!   How cute is this bucket list I found online?!


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Bumpdate: 18 Weeks

18 Weeks!
Baby is currently the size of a SWEET POTATO!
Next Appointment: My next appointment is the week of Christmas!  December 23rd. 

Gender: We confirmed it at our anatomy scan on 11/25, we're adding more BLUE to our family!  Check out our reveal photo.  

Total Weight Gain: I'm +7 as of 18w4d.  My guess was +5 so I was pretty close.  I know 7lbs isn't a ton but it feels like a lot!  Let's just remember I was wearing a sweater and heavy boots!  ;)

Maternity Clothes: Last week I mentioned how my jeans were getting tight but this week they felt fine!  Maybe last week I was wearing too many "fresh from the dryer" jeans.  :)  I am very tempted to get out some of my maternity tops just because they're so long and comfy.  We'll see how long I last...

Sleep: Still so sleepy!  I wish I could nap every day!

Movement: I think I'm pretty confident in saying we now have regular movement with Baby2!  I feel him moving around throughout the day and I love it!  No super strong movements yet, but there's no questioning it anymore.  

Food Cravings/Aversions: Toast with strawberry jam.  I had this for lunch twice and dinner once!  The only aversion is meat.  It's not horrible because I can cook it now, but whenever I make a meal with meat, I end up picking around it and leaving it on the plate.  It drives Nick absolutely insane!

Best Moment This Week: I always talk with Carson about his brother so he's familiar with where his brother is right now.  At some point this week I said "Carson, where's your brother?!"  He looked at my stomach (I was wearing a zip-up) and said "all gone!".  Then he came over, lifted up my shirt, and gave my belly a big hug and kiss.  Melt my heart why don't you!?  <3

What I Miss: Nothing huge this week...maybe just warm weather even though that has nothing to do with pregnancy!

What I'm Looking Forward ToI can't wait to finalize a name!  Even though we had our early gender scan at 14w, I felt like I had to wait until my anatomy scan to get some reassurance.  Now that we know 150% it is definitely a BOY, we can hopefully decide on a name for him!

Extra Notes From the Week: We had our anatomy scan and Baby2 looks PERFECT!  The ultrasound tech was named Emily so of course she was super sweet.  :)  She checked him over very thoroughly and everything seems to be right on track.  He is measuring in at a whopping and adorable 9 ounces!  His heart was beating at 150bpm.  My blood pressure was okay for my appointment so my doctor agreed that I won't have to get on any medication at this time (yay)!  I need to monitor it at home still though.  She also showed me some PT exercises I can do to help with the lower back pain I've been experiencing.  

My bump is finally here!  At least, it was after I ate lunch this day, haha!


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Hand Print Turkey (a new variation!)

Last November I made a hand print turkey with Carson.  I loved the way it turned out but I knew it was going to be VERY hard to accomplish this year with an 18 month old toddler!  Anytime I paint his hands for a craft, he immediately makes a fist so he can squish the paint and feel the textures in his hand.  

Such a tiny little hand print! <3
This is the alternative hand print turkey we did this year.  I think it's just as cute and Carson had a lot of fun making it with me.  It was also a great opportunity to practice his colors!

What You Need:
Washable paint (I used 5 colors)
Paintbrush or foam brush
White paper for base (I used cardstock)
Colored paper (brown, orange, red)
Googly eyes (or a black marker)

How to Make:

  1. I sketched a turkey body on my brown cardstock and cut it out first.  I lightly traced this body onto my white cardstock so I would know where to put Carson's hand prints.
  2. Using one color at a time (obviously!) paint your child's hand and create a print.  I went left to right with the prints because I wasn't sure if I would need 5 or 6.  
  3. In between hand prints, thoroughly wipe your child's hand and clean your paint brush.  You can see where my colors got a bit mixed but I'm okay with that.
  4. Once your hand prints are done, let the paper dry.
  5. Finally, glue on your embellishments!  I glued my turkey body on first and then I added legs, beak, gobbler (is that what that flappy red thing is called?!), and eyes.  

Note: If you're interested in trying the hand print turkey I did with Carson last year, find the complete instructions here!

I'm linking up with Kristin today:


Friday, November 22, 2013

Happy Friday!

I can't believe it's almost December and the only Christmas gifts I've purchased are all for Carson!  I have soooo many more people to buy for and I feel so behind!

In  9 days we will be leaving to visit warm and sunny FLORIDA!  We're going on a friend-cation and I can't wait for Carson to have a week-long play date with his friend, Hallie!  Here's a picture of our last Florida trip together (April 2013): 

Thanksgiving is next week and I still don't know what I'm making!  Luckily (sadly) we aren't hosting this year so I'm only making a few dishes but I need to plan it out!  I'm thinking broccoli rice casserole (Nick's grandmother's recipe) and some sort of delicious dessert...or two! 

Today is officially our last day in contract with our current realtor.  I'm very VERY excited to move on to someone who is a little more invested in getting this house sold!  I hate not knowing where we'll be for Christmas!
*Not our house!* {via}

Last year at about this time (late November) we had our family photos taken.  I cannot believe it's already been a year!  Take a look at chunky little 6 month old Carson!  :)


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Carson Anthony: 18 Months

Carson is 18 months...officially a year and a half!  I think I'm going to be one of those moms who uses months instead of years for way too long.  Oh hi, this is my son, he's 48 months!  Haha!

Carson had his 18 month well visit on 11/20 and he weighed in at 26lbs (53rd percentile) and was 32.5" tall (42nd percentile)!  His Daddy even surprised us by meeting us at the doctor.  I'm so glad because Carson is a handful once we get back to the room and have to wait for the doctor!  There is so much to get into and so much to climb on!

What Carson Loves Right Now
-Carson loves books!  He's always loved books but within the past month it's one of the most popular "activities" in his playroom.  He loves to bring me a book and sit on my lap while I read it to him.  He does a great job of pointing things out and turning the pages for me.  His current favorite book is one of the books we read before bed each night, Say Goodnight.  It's a very short and simple book but he LOVES it!  We usually read it at least 5 times in a joke!
-Carson loves his shape sorters.  He has two different shape sorters and they've really helped him to learn his shapes!  He loves his elephant shape sorter and his animal park shape sorter {clickable links!}, both made by Infantino.
-Carson STILL loves balls.  I don't think this love will ever fade.  :)  It's hard to find a place in my life that hasn't been overtaken with balls.  I think we have 4-5 in my car right now and he always leaves them in multiple rooms of the house!  He has been practicing playing catch with his Daddy with a soft football and he's getting really good!  He also loves kicking balls around and playing "soccer".
-Carson loves playing peek-a-boo!  If I cover my face with my hands he will cover his face and say "gone"!  He also loves hiding behind the curtains and popping out.
-Carson also loves his LeapFrog Letter Factory Phonics {clickable link}.  I originally ordered this when I saw a great price and wanted to save it for Christmas but my husband INSISTED we give it to him early.  Ok, you don't have to twist my arm!  Carson is obsessed.  The songs are pretty repetitive but he loves it and he also loves just playing with the letter tiles.  I still wish they made the fridge phonics though.  :(

Carson LOVES reading.  He gets pretty into his books and this is one of his favorites:

-Carson's favorite foods haven't changed a ton.  He still loves peanut butter sandwiches (I think he could live on those), bananas (plus most other fruit), and applesauce!  He also loves pancakes and waffles for breakfast.  He loves pretty much any kind of snack - nutrigrain bars, graham crackers, puffs, goldfish crackers, etc.  He's a snacker!

What I Love Right NowI'm loving that Carson can play independently but also loves for Mommy and Daddy to be close by.  He loves bringing toys over to play with me and like I mentioned above, he loves reading books while sitting in my lap.  He loves to hold our hands and walk with us which melts my heart EVERY time!  I'm loving that he waves to absolutely everyone (even when they are totally turned the opposite way).  He loves making people laugh and smile and his smile is contagious!  I'm loving that he's getting into that random toddler stage where he gets attached to strange items.  Lately he loves getting into our pantry and getting out a particular box of fruit snacks.  He'll carry it around the house forever and take the snack pouches out of the box and put them back in.  Sometimes he'll hand the pouches out to whoever is at our house and then come back around and collect them!  

Here's a short video of Carson practicing some of his shapes:

Some of our Biggest Struggles: For a while, Carson was throwing little "tantrums" when he couldn't figure something out.  I think his lack of speech can be frustrating for both of us!  If he was trying to do something and couldn't do it on his own, he would start screeching...loudly!  We decided to ignore this behavior and when the screeching subsided we would gently ask if he needed help.  Now he has learned to sign (and make a noise) for help and it's so much better!  I also struggle with Carson's picky appetite.  There are some foods that he LOVES but it's so hard to get him to eat vegetables!  Luckily he'll still eat the pouches and veggie burgers.  I've tried to get him to eat what we're eating but usually he doesn't seem to care for much of it.

Exciting Milestones & Physical Changes: Carson has added some more words this month including "yea" (quite often with a head nod) and "mm-mm-bah" which is how he says 'apple'.  It took me a while to figure out he was saying apple but I'm sure now that it's definitely his way of saying the word!  Our pediatrician cracked up when we told her and had him say it!

Carson also added another tooth this month - a lower lateral incisor!  Now he finally has more than 2 teeth on the bottom front!

18 Month Word List:
  • "all gone"/"gone" (always with upturned hands and a shrug)
  • "done" He hasn't been using this word anymore, he usually just says "gone"
  • "up" (sometimes sounds like "uhhhh")
  • "Mama" He has said this in the past, but it's not consistent enough to make the list!
  • "Dada"
  • "daw" (dog)
  • "bird"
  • "book"
  • "ball"
  • "vroom vroom"
  • "duck"
  • "wawa" (water)
  • "shoooos" (shoes)
  • "puh" (pillow)
  • "tuh" (truck)
  • "trsssh" (trash)
  • "mm-bah" (apple)  Not sure where he got that pronunciation!
  • "yea"
  • "boo!" (are you surprised he learned this around Halloween?!)
  • "whoa!"
**The last 4 words on our list are new this month! 

Animal Sounds (7): Cow, Elephant, Pig, Fish, Duck (although it doesn't sound like a quack...more like "duck! duck! duck!"), Sheep, and Chicken (which really sounds like he's clearing his throat for some odd reason!)
*We've been practicing tiger, but he doesn't quite have it yet!

Body Parts He Can Identify (16): Head, Hair, Ears, Eyes, Nose, Cheeks, Mouth, Tongue, Hands, Fingers, Feet, Toes, Tummy, Belly Button, Knees, Shoulders.  

Signs Carson Uses: eat, more, milk, all gone, help
*We haven't been teaching new signs since he's starting to verbalize more!

Things We're Looking Forward To: I'm excited to take another special vacation with Carson and his friend Hallie!  We went to Florida with Hallie and her family back in April and this time we're headed back to Florida to visit Fort Lauderdale!  I feel very fortunate that we're able to take nice trips and make memories together.  I can't wait to see what the kids think!  Here is a pic from last April when they were about 11 months:


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Edible Homemade Pumpkin Playdough

Who here is making something pumpkin flavored for Thanksgiving?!  I know I have a recipe in mind, but it doesn't use the entire can.  This playdough recipe is great for using that leftover canned pumpkin!

What You Need:
Canned Pumpkin
Pumpkin Pie Spice (optional)

How to Make It:
  1. Mix your canned pumpkin in a bowl until you have a smooth consistency.  I used about a half can.  
  2. If desired, add some sprinkles of pumpkin spice so that your mixture starts to smell delicious and fall-like.
  3. Slowly add in your cornstarch and stir.  The dough will start trying out and you can switch to kneading.  The dough should be dry enough to roll into a ball, but not so dry that it is crumbling.  You also don't want the dough to stick to your hands.   
    • If the dough is sticking to your hands --> add more cornstarch!  
    • If the dough is crumbling --> add a small amount of water!

This pumpkin playdough will keep in an airtight container for about 2-3 days in the refrigerator.  When you get it out of the fridge, you will probably need to knead it again and add a bit of water to soften the mixture.

{Original Source}

Here are some pics of Carson enjoying his playdough....
It really is edible!  Not tasty, but totally safe!

Testing the bouncing capabilities :)

He was throwing it around and threw it right off the tray!

Dixie was curious :)



Monday, November 18, 2013

Bumpdate: 17 Weeks

17 Weeks!
Baby is currently the size of an ONION!

Next Appointment: Our anatomy scan is next Monday 11/25!!

Gender: We're adding more BLUE to our family!  Check out our reveal photo.

Total Weight Gain: I'll get the official # next week.  I'm going to guess +5 but I have no idea.

Maternity Clothes: My jeans are starting to get a bit snug.  It's weird, though.  They aren't too tight....they just don't fit right anymore.  I might need to look through my closet for a bigger size or bite the bullet and try on some of my maternity jeans!

Sleep: Still feeling extra tired.  Isn't the second trimester supposedly the one where you're full of energy?!  :)

Movement: I've felt more movement this week!  Not a ton, but definite movement again and I'm loving it.  I'm crossing my fingers that I'll be able to see and feel Baby2 move during our ultrasound next week!

Food Cravings/Aversions: My craving of the week was definitely fruit.  I wanted to eat fruit and anything fruity flavored.  I've always loved the fruit leathers from Target and this week I probably could have gone through an entire box if I didn't have will power.

Best Moment This WeekFeeling that movement again!  Carson has also been giving lots of hugs and kisses to his baby brother and it melts my heart!

What I MissMy husband kindly bought a 12 pack of hard cider and it made me a tiny bit jealous.  I bought apple cider to make up for it and it was really good!

What I'm Looking Forward ToOur anatomy scan next week!  I can't wait to check on Baby2 and see him again!  I'm also looking forward to choosing a name!

Extra Notes From the Week: We've been working hard on THE discussion.  You know, the name discussion.  It's seriously so hard!  Whenever I think of an amazing name, Nick thinks I'm crazy.  Whenever he finds a name he loves, I feel so "meh" about it.  We have a few on our list that we have agreed on but we're still looking too.  It's so hard to pick a name that goes with our last name AND that sounds good with Carson.  


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Home. {a tour}

Days after moving in back in 2005!  
Our house is on the market.  Listed officially.  For sale!  Our home.  Our first home together.  We've been here for 8.5 years and we BUILT this home together.  Literally!  Ok, not literally, a construction crew built it, but we chose everything!  I love our home and we've made it our own.  I'm obsessed with my paint colors and I know every square inch of this house.  This is where we brought our puppies home.  This is where I brought my first baby home!  This is the home we lived in when we got engaged and when we got married!  Are you sensing a trend?  I'm a little sad to leave.

Moving is so bittersweet!  I'm sad to leave our first home.  SO sad.  We're moving to be closer to my husband's work which makes me happy for him.  It also makes me happy about the opportunity of him coming home for lunch and possibly him coming home earlier in the evenings!  Even though I'm sad about leaving our first home, I'm excited for new beginnings.  I'm excited create a space for our family of 4 (+2 adorable furballs)!  I'm so excited to make another house our home!

Reminisce with me for a are some [MLS] pictures of our first home.  I will miss it so much!

Formal Dining/Living Room



Great Room

Great Room again...I love our fireplace!
Powder Room

Guest Bathroom


Guest Bedroom

Master Bedroom

Master Bathroom

Loft (Playroom/Office)

As much as I love this home, there are many things I would love to change....
-I would love to have white woodwork.
-I would love to have upgraded countertops.
-I would love to have hardwood floor (or even laminate!)
-I would love to have a finished basement for the kids.
-I would love to have a flat backyard with space for boys to be boys.
-I would love to have wonderful neighbors that can turn into wonderful friends.

I'm hoping our next home will be just as wonderful as our first, even better!  When I get sad, I just try to think of a line from one of my favorite songs.  [I may or may not be listening to the song on repeat while writing this post.]  You make your house your home and I'm excited to create a new home with my growing family!