Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Rainy Weekend

It rained all.weekend.long here, but we still had a blast! Friday was the only nice day, and we took our friends to the state park about half an hour away. We didn't have to pay since it was after hours, and we enjoyed our picnic dinner and playing on the beach. Carter wasn't too sure about the sand at first, but by the time we left she was a fan.

Saturday was really rainy and just miserable outside, so our little family went with my friend and her daughter to Wegmans for lunch. They had a guy doing balloon animals there, and we got the coolest dog! These were not your standard balloon animals. We then went to the Explore and More Museum. We have free passes at the library, so it was an inexpensive trip and it was the neatest place! Even though Carter is still really little she had a great time. I see us going there a lot more in the future. I'm not sure who enjoyed it more, Carter or my husband!

Sunday we laid low and got caught up on things around the house, including making our menu for this week!

Monday: Leftover meatball casserole
Tuesday: Spaghetti
Wednesday: hot dog fundraiser at the library
Thursday: Beef burritos
Friday: Grilled cheese and apples
Saturday: Mini Mushroom and Swiss Quinoa Cups

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Carter is 10 Months!

Even though I don't usually dedicate a post to every monthly birthday Carter has, I thought a survey would be a fun way to catch up on the last month or so. She's getting so big and learning new things every day, sometimes its hard to keep up!

Height: 27.5in (26th percentile)

Weight: 17.9lbs (37th percentile)

Clothing size: 6-9 months or 9 months

Milestones: crawling like a speed demon, gives toys when asked, putting blocks in the right shaped holes, jabbering up a strom

Special Outings: 

Her buddy Jackson's first birthday party

Uncle Danny and Aunt Amy's wedding weekend (just noticed she had on the same outfit- hilarious)

Alicia's bridal shower

Her Routine: 
6:30-7am: Wake up, nurse. Play until
8:30am: Breakfast! Usually self fed finger foods. More playing. Some days she goes to daycare at 9am
10-11:30am: nap. this is highly varied though: daycare days she usually naps later because of all the FUN
11:30am: 6oz bottle. followed by more playing
1pm: lunch. If its not a daycare day but I work, she goes to my moms just before lunch. Lunch is sometimes finger foods, sometimes purees, sometimes a mix.
3-4:15pm: nap. Again varied, sometimes a little later on daycare days or longer if she took a shorter nap earlier
4:15pm: 6oz bottle
6pm: dinner. Almost always finger foods, sometimes parts of our dinner sometimes something seperate
7:30: diaper change and pjs, every other night she gets a bath also
8pm: nurse and to bed for the evening

We've gotten more flexible with her schedule the past month or two now that she only naps 2x. The naps vary so we roll with the punches :)

Favorites: Watermelon, plums, dog food (seriously. we're up to 4x now) her mama, rubber bath animals, Aden and Anais muslin blankets, keys, swings.

Carter is a great baby and I love being her mama. On to the next month of fun!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Positive and Negative Knitting

Between a lot of time in the car and sacrificing some sleep, I had managed to do a good bit of knitting. I really want to make something for Carter for her first birthday, and I already had the yarn for a Bloom top, so I thought it would be perfect. Until mommy brain intervened and I knit the whole ribbed portion on the wrong size needle.

It was a sad moment when I realized all that knitting time was wasted. I feel like its so precious these days- it's hard to allow myself to just relax and knit. It feels indulgent and selfish, even though I know its healthy to have some "me" time. Anyway, all this to say, normally I'm always in favor of ripping something out and reknitting if its not quite right, but it was especially painful Saturday to rip out all that work.

I have started over (on the right size needles. I checked. Twice) and the plus side is, I already know what to do. Other than the occasional check to make sure I'm on the right track it seems to be going quicker. At least that's what I'm telling myself. Here's my progress now:

I'm also still working on the vivid blanket squares, though now it's going to be a Christmas present rather than a wedding gift. But that's ok, that gives me time to make it bigger than I'd originally planned and perfect!

As far as reading, the only things I've been reading lately are books for my library's Battle of the Books competition. As the coach I try to read all the books before, if not along with, the kids, and I'm on the last one. I'm looking forward to some reading material not geared toward middle school aged kids, not that there's anything wrong with that!

I'm linking up with Ginny's Yarn Along today.

Monday, June 22, 2015

One Month Later...

I didn't intend to be away a month when I announced we were moving, but between trying to get settled and attending my brother's wedding that both my husband and I stood up in, it's been a busy few weeks! I'm hoping to post again with some sort of regularity and hopefully include some regular weekly posts!

We've been busy the past few weeks...

Carter turned 9 months old!

One of the things we lost in the move was her 9 month iron on (I put it in a "safe" place!) so I had to get a little creative.

We had a girls day out with our best buds!
We went to a new mexican restaurant and Carter was very well behaved! Considering it was 3 adults and 2 kiddos we managed to actually enjoy most of our meal. Win!

We went to a local festival and Carter got to pet some animals (though she had more fun trying to climb the cages...)

Carter and Elliot (the cat) have become fast friends now that she is very mobile. He is so tolerant!

Wedding weekend! I have SO many photos, so I'll just share some of my favorites:

The day after the wedding the families got together for a little barbecue before we drove the 5 hours home. Carter made a new friend in Callie, my sister in laws dog!

Now that the weather is a bit nicer bedtime has been a bit flexible- this night she was CRAZY hyper so I let her stay up an extra 15 minutes to tire herself out.

There have also been plenty of walks and park playing!

And most recently, we celebrated Father's Day with our favorite guys!
My dad, the hubs and Carter, and my father in law. Carter really was happy to be with them, I promise!

And now onto our menu for the week! We've started planning out lunches AND dinners to try and avoid the 10pm scramble to find something for lunch..

Monday: Leftover sub for Zach, veggies and hard boiled egg for me, leftover crockpot BBQ chicken for dinner
Tuesday: Chicken salad wrap for lunches, YOYO for dinner (you're on your own)
Wednesday: leftover BBQ chicken for lunches, breakfast food for dinner
Thursday: Soup for Zach, TBD for me (my day off) and some sort of casserole for dinner
Friday: salads for lunches, fish and veggies for dinner

I'm hoping to do some baking too, but I have to finish off the cherry blueberry pie bars I made for Father's Day first ;)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

We're moving!

My little family is moving! It is very sudden, but we are excited, because this means one more step closer to our dream home. We own a duplex and until now have lived in half, but we are going to be renting out both sides of the duplex. Which means we needed somewhere to live! Fortunately we are going to be renting a house right next door to my parents. Its a fairly convenient location for our jobs as well as babysitting (my mom and daycare both!) so we are happy with this arrangement for now. I might be a bit scarce for the next week or two as we get settled, but I'm hoping to be back more often when things are all moved.

Also, a small favor. I entered Carter in a contest to win a photography session! Normally this isn't something I would do, but with her first birthday coming up faster than I'd like, I thought how perfect it would be if we won! So, if you are so inclined, you can vote for her here (Facebook link).

Also, Carter is starting to crawl and move around a lot more!

She's so goofy ;) See you soon!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Blanket Changes

I've been knitting away this week, and made a change on the Vivid blanket. After talking it over with my brother, I've decided to make the blanket bigger even though it means it wont be done for the wedding. He was totally fine with this, and I was too because ultimately I want it to be something they get a lot of use out of. If that means it takes a few more months, so be it! That said, here's my progress:

I have 18 squares done, and the ball on top is the next and last color. I laid out the squares over the weekend so I know what colors need more squares, so now to keep knitting! I really do love this pattern, and I can almost knit it entirely from memory. 

I also put a few rows on Carter's bloom. This is a hard color to photograph- it keeps getting washed out. You can also really see the crack on my lens (that I really need to go get fixed!) because I was trying to get it in the sun as much as possible.

No problems with this so far, just ribbing and increases!

This crazy girl is babbling all the time now, and is this close to crawling. I'm not sure I'm ready for that!

Linking up with Ginny's Yarn Along.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

What Carter Eats 2

It's been a few weeks so I thought I would do another post about what Carter is eating!

We introduced a few new purees, and more recently have been doing a lot more finger foods. Yesterday and today we have been starting with finger/table foods, and then following with purees if she hasn't eaten enough.

This was about a month ago, in the middle of April. She had avocado and sweet potato, and clearly she enjoyed it! She doesn't usually get this messy, but the hubs was letting her feed herself pretty much entirely.

The next day we were at the park, so she had a pouch of baby food. I don't remember what kind though. I love the pouches for travel!

Saturday the 18th was one of the first nice days we had, so we all had breakfast on the porch. Baby had oatmeal and fruit :)

For the next few weeks she ate a lot of the same 10 fruits and veggies, plus oatmeal, puffs, and toast pieces. By the end of April we had her eating 3 meals a day, and starting to vary her foods a bit more. I realized we'd been in a bit of a rut!

We did cottage cheese on April 30th, and she liked it, but didn't love it. I think the texture threw her off a bit. 

I was away the first weekend of May, so we didn't introduce anything new. On May 5th we did yogurt again. We tried yogurt when she was 7.5 months and I think she just wasn't ready for it. It made for an AWFUL diaper. She loves it now though! I feed her plain greek yogurt. Here she's eating it mixed with butternut squash.

And here she is a few mornings later eating it with banana chunks for breakfast (please excuse her goopy eye. Her tear duct still isn't working quite right :/)

This week we are doing a lot more finger foods because Carter seems to be getting bored of the purees. So far she has done carrots (still not a big fan) peaches (loves them!) avocado (likes it) black beans (so so) and mozzarella cheese (likes it). I've started keeping better track of exactly what she eats for solid meals so watch for a post about our transition to finger foods!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Travel Knitting

I don't get as much time to knit this days, with an almost mobile 8 month old, work, cooking, cleaning, dog, cat, and husband. But I usually try to sneak in a few minutes every day, during nap times, at night before bed, or in the case of last weekend, while in the car! I went to my to-be-sister-in-law's bachelorette party and shower this weekend, and since my parents were going too I rode with them. Not only did this save me gas money (always nice) but it also meant I got to knit while I rode! I got more knitting done over 2 days that I have in weeks.

Above you can see the new project I started. Given how little time I have to knit these days, I started thinking ahead to projects I want to finish this year. I knew that I wanted to give Carter a hand knit gift for her first birthday, and that was prioritized over everything but the blanket. So I brought the yarn along (lovingly wound by my husband!) and cast on a Bloom by Georgie Hallam. I only got a few rows in, but it was so nice working with Sunshine Yarns again :)

I devoted most of my time to the squares for the wedding blanket though, and I'm making good progress! Here's my stack:

Here are 16 of the 17 squares I have finished. I originally was only going to make 25, and do a gradient from the middle out where half the colors would go from light to dark (the middle) and back out to light with the other half of the colors on the other side. But I really love how all the colors look together, and even though I would be almost double the amount of squares I'm considering doing it as a full gradient from light to dark and back to light again (does that make any sense?)

I think it would be a more usable size, and I really want them to LOVE this blanket. I think I have enough yarn, so I might start to try to really crank out squares and see how many I can get done.

Linking up with Ginny's Yarn Along today!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

What Carter Eats

I've been thinking about writing this post for a while, and finally got around to doing it! I know I always appreciate seeing what other parents are feeding their babies, especially since I make all Carter's food. Sometimes I feel like we get in a rut with the same few foods, so adding to our repertoire is always good.

This will be a pretty long post, as I figured I would cover all the solids Carter has eaten up until this point, and then do periodic updates.

So we started Carter on solids at 5 months. She was more than ready, as she had been sitting (supported) for a little while and had started reaching for our food and pretending to chew while we ate. We started with runny rice cereal, and she gobbled it down.

We started feeding it to her once a day around lunchtime for a few days, but then we ran into a problem with constipation. We always made the cereal very runny, and gave her a few sips of water with it, but her tummy and the rice cereal did not get along. She also got a cold right around this time, and we didn't worry about solids while she was sick, so it was a week or two before we started again.

The next couple things we gave Carter were sweet potato, squash, apple, and banana. For the sweet potato and squash I roasted them and scooped out the insides to puree in our food processor. The apples I steamed in my steamer basket on the stove and pureed them. The bananas I just pureed. We keep Carter's food frozen, so I would put the purees in a ziploc bag (for easier dispensing) and pipe them into freezer trays. After a few hours they would be frozen and I would put them in a freezer bag labeled with the food and the date. Easy peasy!

We rotated with these four foods for a while, as they were easy for her to eat and digest and I had made a fair amount of them. We have also worked with Carter to put the spoon in her own mouth, so pretty much from the get go we have put the food on the spoon and she has put it in her mouth. It was initially a bit messier, but now she is a pro!

When Carter 6.5 months or so we gave peas a try. This was the first food that she didn't really like. She would eat it, but would make a face and wouldn't eat it nearly as fast. We also started giving her a few puffs before or after her lunch so she would work on her hand-eye coordination and pincer grip.

We also introduced pears around this time and she loved them. A few times I would mix pear or apple in with the peas to make them more appealing to her. 

Also around this time we also tried plain greek yogurt. She loved it, but it resulted in some pretty explosive diapers, so we decided to table it and come back to it.

Around 7 months we started giving her chunks of foods to feed herself. We started with avocado, which previously I had mixed into a few of her purees if I happened to be eating one that day. She was a fan of the avocado but it was pretty slippery for her to hold onto. I tried crushing up some puffs and rolling it in that, which helped some, but she preferred to eat it from her mesh feeder. I also have given her a few slivers of my toast, which she loved to slobber on until it got soft. Then she gummed it and swallowed. 

A few weeks ago I made waffles with greek yogurt and was reheating them during the week for breakfasts. Just to see how she did, I gave Carter one of my toasted waffle quarters. She loved it! Similar to the toast, she would gnaw on it until it became slobbery and them gum it. She only ate about a third of the quarter, but loved every bite she got!

Since she was doing so well with the puffs, toast, and waffle, I wanted to see if she would feed herself really soft cooked veggies and fruits. We gave steamed carrots a try, but they were a no go.

This was the first time Carter flat out refused food.

We also tried scrambled egg yolk around this time. She liked it ok, but it was hard for her to eat. I think we need to find a different way for her to eat it.

At Easter dinner Carter got to have some squash, applesauce, and (plain) mashed potatoes. She was in heaven!

Next we tried spinach, I know some people don't do spinach because of the nitrates, but our doctor said it was fine in small doses. I just make sure to space it out :) Surprisingly she liked it!

I mentioned earlier that we sometimes use a mesh feeder. Occasionally, depending on what Carter is eating that day or if I need to eat at the same time, we use a mesh feeder and Carter feeds herself. She really likes being independent! When she was teething we would put a piece of frozen banana in there. Here she had avocado, sweet potato, and banana.

She clearly was enjoying it!

In the last week or so we have also tried carrots (in puree this time but still not a fan) and mango (which she likes). No photos of these though!

I think that's about all I can think of. I'm planning to make up some green beans as soon as I can get my hands on some fresh ones, and I think we'll be trying yogurt again sometime soon. Any other suggestions?

Monday, April 20, 2015

Sun Shiny Weekend and a Menu

It was a beautiful weekend and we had a lot of time outside to enjoy it! Friday we took Carter to the park and met up with our friends Sara and Madison. Carter hadn't been to the park before, and we discovered she could care less about slides, but loved the swing!

Best buds!

Isn't that a great photo? My friend Sara took it and I just love it :)

Saturday we all enjoyed breakfast on the porch. 

We cleaned the house, ran a few errands, and worked outside while it was still light out.

We also went on a walk!

The sunglasses lasted all of 15 seconds, but they were cute :)

Here's our week's eats:
Monday: Hot dogs and salads
Wednesday: Lefovers
Friday: Leftovers/eat out
Saturday: Homemade pizza and tater tots

Baking: I'll definitely be baking apple pie bars for my (almost) sister-in-laws bridal shower this weekend. I'm not sure if I'll make anything else. Last week I made flourless peanut butter brownies and they were to die for!

This week I'm linking up with Motivation Monday and

Monday, April 13, 2015

Spring Weather and Our Menu

This weekend was the first peek of spring weather, and it was so nice! Today is even more beautiful, and it kills me that I have to work all day :)

Carter thoroughly enjoyed her lunch on Saturday, which was avocado, sweet potato, and banana. She also had some baby puffs, as you can see ;)

After that meal her pjs were trashed, so we played in a blanket for a while before getting dressed for the day :)

We also went for a family walk and enjoyed subs and wings from the pizzeria for dinner (the adults, not Carter!)

Sunday was the usual busyness of church, work, and small group. Only 1 more Sunday and then I wont work on weekends for the summer. I don't mind working Sundays, but once the weather gets nice its always hard to go into work for a few hours!

Here's what our menu looks like this week:

Monday: hot dogs on the grill and corn
Tuesday: hotdogs and green beans
Wednesday: Roast Beef dipped Sandwiches and salads
Thursday: Leftovers (repurpose the beef?)
Friday: Tacos
Saturday: Quesadillas

This week I'm baking Flourless Fudgy Peanut Butter Bars. They look yummy!

Linking up with Motivation Monday and