Friday, August 31, 2012

You Scream, I Scream, We All Scream For...


Molly had her first taste of ice cream a couple weeks ago. She loved it. Nothing better than an ice cream series on the last day of August.




Happy Labor Day Weekend!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Back Home & MonkeyMat Giveaway Winners

We are back home from our vacation. Well sort-of, we are at my parents to pick up Molly. It was so great to see her smiling face this morning, we missed her SO much. But we had a lot of fun. A couple recap posts about our trip to come.

In the meantime I wanted to congratulate Amy and Lauren on being selected as the winners of the MonkeyMat giveaway! Congrats ladies...I will contact you to arrange getting you your mats!

Now its back the grind...but a little something to hold on to that vacation feeling.


winners were selected by using a random number generator at MonkeyMat donated the mats to be given away to readers of

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

T-Minus 20 Hours

It's almost time. We will be jetting off to Chicago sans baby (you can read all about my emotional breakdown here) to enjoy some time together and hang out with good friends and family.

Our flight takes off tomorrow morning at 5:30am and I am excited to get out of town, get out of the heat and spend some quality time with my husband in my favorite city.

We will be doing really fun things like concerts in the park, Chicago Cubs game, architectural boat tour, beach time and much more. Oh and the food, don't get me started.

Say a little prayer that we can survive 5 long days without our little girl and have fun. 

See you guys next week!

Don't forget to enter the MonkeyMat giveaway -- 2 lucky readers will win the awesome mat. Deadline to enter is this Friday at 12am CST.

Monday, August 20, 2012

MonkeyMat Review and Giveaway!

As a Mom I am always eager to find new products that are catered exactly to my Mom needs. There are certain scenarios and problems that us Moms face that need special attention. When I came across the MonkeyMat via Twitter I was intrigued though I will admit a little skeptical. What did this mat do that any other blanket that I already had couldn't? So when the awesome people at MonkeyMat gave me the chance to review their product I was pumped. I was ready to try it out and put it to the test.

1. A lightweight Travel Mat | lightweight Exercise Mat | lightweight Yoga Mat | lightweight Picnic Mat | lightweight Outdoor Concert Mat | lightweight Baby Mat | lightweight Outdoor Ground Mat | lightweight Baby Changing Pad | lightweight Play Mat | lightweight Beach Mat | lighweight Camping Mat 2. The perfect baby shower gift

As you can see the mat's uses are endless. The mat is large, water repellent, has loops for toys and packs up easily into a small storage pouch.

The first thing I noticed was the small compact size. My diaper bag is already overflowing but this little bag I could easily find room for (and I was able to take out the small blanket I had in there already). So far so good.


The first time we used the MonkeyMat we spread it out in the front yard for some outdoor playtime. I immediately liked how easy it was to lay out because of the weighted corners. But once we put our crawling, exploring 9 month old down it began to bunch up. Luckily the genius Mom behind this product had already thought of this. The mat has little loops so you can stake it down. Once we did that it was snugly in place and Molly could crawl all over the place.


We have continued to use the MonkeyMat for park trips, baby pool time in the front yard, a trip to the Dallas Arboretum -- all the usual suspects. But we have discovered maybe the best us of all, a mat underneath her high chair! We just got new carpet in our dining room and when we have family meals her high chair is at the dining room table. With the amount of food flinging and cup flailing that goes on we needed a solution to avoid staining our new carpet. MonkeyMat to the rescue!


It worked perfectly. It caught all of her "droppings" and after dinner we let the dog have at it and then we rinsed it off. Easy. It will definitely be our go-to for dinners in the dining room.

I definitely recommend this product. Its so versatile and I also LOVE that is a local product from right here in Texas. Plus, it was made by a Mom so she knows what mommas need.

For a couple lucky readers -- you will get to experience this great product as well. The lovely team at MonkeyMat sent me two mats to give away to my readers!

Giveaway Details:

To win, simply comment on my post (be sure to include your email) with the words "MonkeyMat Me" and tell us what creative way you could see yourself using the MonkeyMat.

Giveaway closes Friday August 24th at 12pm CST.

Good luck!

To learn more about the product you can visit the website and follow them on Twitter @MonkeyMatMama

Friday, August 17, 2012

Daddy Daughter Friday: Playing (& a guest post)



Playing piano in Toys R Us. Molly really enjoyed it. So cute.


I also have a guest post today over at Run Pretty about my lack of motivation to get back into shape and train for an upcoming 10k! Go check it out and give me some tips!

Happy Friday ya'll!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Leaving Baby Behind

In 6 days we will be leaving our baby behind to take a vacation just the two of us. When I planned this trip a couple months ago I was SO excited. The thought of sleeping in, going out at night, taking naps, general spontaneity was so thrilling. I couldn't wait. And here we are, 6 days out and I am sick just thinking about it.


I have this knot in my stomach that makes me nauseous when I start to think about leaving Molly. I am getting tears welling up in my eyes as I write this post. Thinking about walking out the door next Wed and not seeing her until the following Monday is heart breaking. How do people do this the first time?

I have been going over and over in my head the things I could say to the airline to get a refund on our non-refundable tickets. I have been trying to figure out how to maybe take a day or two off the length of our trip. I have been planning super exciting and fun things to do on our vacation to try and block out the idea of leaving her. Nothing is working. I am terrified.


I know that we need this. We need to get away for a few days and have some real alone time. Between my husbands school, my work and taking care of Molly we don't get much uninterrupted time and I know it will be nice. (except I might be bawling my eyes out the entire time) We need a little piece of our old life back, if only just for a few days. We need a little independence and adventure to hold us over for another 9 months until we can get away again.

But geez, I do not want to go.

6 days, six short days to get over it and prepare for a good time. I can do this.


Moms out there, any tips on getting over the separation and allowing yourself to have a good time?

Monday, August 13, 2012

Molly: 9 Months

These monthly posts are really flying by! I remember those first couple months they seemed so far a part but these days they are happening before we know it!

We have hit 9 Months! Nine months in and now Nine months out. Unreal. This week is 39 weeks and I had her at 39 weeks and 3 days. It still feels like yesterday.

I guess time flies when you are having fun. And we are having some serious fun around here.

We had a few big firsts this month. She is now giving full on kisses. They are the best thing ever. We say "kisses!" and she leans in and gives little open mouth slobbery kisses...sometimes she sneaks in the tongue as well. I love them. She is also waving and she has started clapping on occasion. So cute.

She went swimming in a big pool for the first time this month. I was a little worried because she doesn't love her baby pool but she had a blast. She instantly loved it. She splashes and plays. Its a lot of fun.

The girl knows what she wants and has developed quite the little whine when she isn't getting it. We aren't sure exactly how to curb that at this point since she doesn't understand No so we just try to redirect her to something different. It works 70% of the time.

Her sleep is going really well, she finally started sleeping through the night. We are thoroughly enjoying that. Its nice to get a full night of uninterrupted sleep.

Eating continues to go great, she hasn't found a food she doesn't like and blueberries are her favorite thing in the world!

Being her parents is such a blast and we are soaking up these latest months. Watching our lil baby turn into a "big" girl is a trip. I wish sometimes it would slow down but the ride we are on is pretty fantastic.

Happy 9 Months baby girl. We love you so much.


Stats: {official}
Weight- 16lbs 8oz {10%}

Height- 27 1/2" {50%}
Head- 16 1/2" {5%}

Wearing almost all 6-9mo and some 6-12mo(Baby Gap). She moved up to size 3 diapers.

Pulling things out of her box
Unloading the dog toys
Bouncing up and down
Trying to stand up on her own (w/out pulling up on something)

Riding in the car (this one went away and now its back)
Being removed from a situation
Not getting her way (not a good sign for the teenage years)
Not being able to reach something






Friday, August 10, 2012

TGIF & 9 Months

Today Molly is 9 Months old. 9 months in -- 9 months out (it doesn't really add up that way but it sounds cool).

I took some fun shots of her this morning to capture the true 9 Months moment.






Gosh, she is cute. And we love her like woah!

Happy Friday and have an amazing weekend everyone.

p.s. She is rocking the OU onesie. BOOMER SOONER!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Munchkin Meals: Lately

Excited to be back to share our recent exploration with food on this week's Munchkin Meals linkup courtesy of Brittany @ A Healthy Slice of Life

Molly's discovery of new foods continues and she is such a great little eater. She hasn't turned away from anything we have given her and loves when mealtime comes around.

Breakfast is still not terribly exciting. Most days its some YoBaby yogurt, organic mini waffles and a few pieces of banana. Occasionally we do eggs with a little bit of cheese. She loves it all!


A lot of times when lunch rolls around we are out running errands so we will stop into a restaurant and have a lunch date or go meet her Dad for lunch. What is SO nice about Molly eating table food is that we can easily feed her from a restaurant menu and often times she can share with me. Last week we stopped off at Chipotle and shared a burrito bowl with chicken, black beans, tomatoes, cheese, cilantro rice and pico. Yum!


When dinner rolls around we usually lean on our leftovers from the night before to be Molly's dinner. She still eats earlier than we do so this works out really well. On this evening she had rotisserie chicken, green beans, diced up cherry tomatoes and peaches.


For snacks we have been eating a lot of blueberries. Girl LOVES her blueberries!

She almost always finishes the amount we put out for her and sometimes we even have to give her a little more. Its so fun to watch her eat and find new foods she really likes!

Sometimes she even helps me fix her food (I wish).


I hope her love for food and not being picky continues for a long time to come.

Happy Eating.

New Mom Resources: Books

As a first time Mom I had the overwhelming feeling from the first time I looked at the + sign on the pregnancy test that I had no idea what I was doing. We weren't exactly "trying" to have a baby so there had been little to zero research done on having a baby and being a Mom.

As soon as the dust settled from the OH MY GOSH WE ARE HAVING A BABY! I began to do the research necessary to feel good about growing a human and being responsible for raising a human being. I found lots of great resources along the way so I thought I would share them, hopefully they will help calm some other HOLY CRAP! WHAT AM I DOING? new Mom.


Instead of writing a big huge post I am doing to divy it up into several posts. The first one is dedicated to the books I used during pregnancy and after having Molly.

1. Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Baby - this is a great book. We chose to skip the ever popular What to Expect When You're Expecting and go with this more medically minded option. We read it every day during pregnancy and it also has things for baby after birth.

2. The Happiest Baby on the Block - We bought this when I was pregnant after a Mom at BuyBuy baby said it was a must for survival. We tried several of these methods with Molly, most didn't work. But its a great book and I think the information would be helpful to most.

3. the eco-nomical baby guide - great book if you are trying to spend less and create less waste etc. It goes into detail on what you really need vs. not and talks a lot of green products, cloth diapering etc. It even gives budget breakdowns based on things you need for baby.

4. Belly Laughs:The Naked Truth about Pregnancy and Childbirth - Hilarious read. Something lighthearted and fun to enjoy reading while you are pregnant. Lots of funny and very real stories to prepare you for whats coming.

5. Operating Instructions:A Journal of My Son's First Year - Great book about a raising a child alone on a super tight budget. It will really prepare you for the emotional journey and challenges that come with a baby. And her little boy has colic.

6. From Conception to Birth: The Drama of Life's Beginnings (circa 1971) - My mom used this book when she was pregnant with me as her resource to her pregnancy. It was so fun to read through all of the old (and sometimes out dated) information. Some really spectacular pictures as well.

7. baby facts: The Truth about Your Child's Health from Newborn through Preschool - Written by a pediatrician it addresses common questions in the form of myths vs facts. It has some good information but it very medically minded and often discounts a more naturopathic approach, something we don't always agree with.

8. The Fussy Baby Book- This was recommended to me by Jen and is a wonderful book for parents who have a more "high needs" baby. It helped us realize that there isn't anything "wrong" with Molly, her personality is just different and special in its own way.

9. How to Teach Your Baby to Sleep Through the Night - Another book my mom used with my brother and I. Teaches a modified CIO method. We ended up using this book to sleep train Molly and it worked really well. I think there is an updated version.

All of these books I would recommend and each helped in their own way. At some point my Mom instincts took over but I leaned on the information I read in these books to get there.

I hope one of these can help you and if you have any questions about a book or its information please leave a comment or you can email me at

Friday, August 3, 2012

Daddy Daughter Friday: Double Feature

This Friday I wanted to feature not only our human daughter but also our first born daughter, our dog Paisley. It was Paisley's 5th Birthday on July 17th and we celebrated with her, like we do every year, with a cheeseburger bday cake.

Paisley is a very special part of our family and we love her so much! I can't wait to watch Molly and her grow up to be best friends.


And some good ol' fashion Daddy Daughter -- music edition. A prodigy in the making?


Happy Friday!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Sleep Situation: Take Two

Our sleep situation (which I documented here) has been quite a journey. We started off awesome (a newborn sleeping through the night!), hit some rough patches that we worked through then BAM! 4 month sleep regression hit and boy did it screw things up.

Since that 4 month regression we have been working and working and working to get our full night of sleep back. And, with the risk of the blog jinx, our baby girl is now sleeping through the night!


We have hit over a week of going to bed at 8ish and not waking up until 8:30 or later the next day. I am here to tell you, its as wonderful as they say it is. I love me some sleep and having a full night back has been amazing. Let me tell you how we got here...

When she started waking up at 2/3am around 4 Months we decided it was a growth spurt and she needed the extra feeding. She wasn't up for long, just enough time to drink her bottle and go back to bed. In total I was up for about 30 minutes. Not bad. So we continued on.

At 5 months she started waking up twice. Once at 2/3am and again at 6am. Not cool. So we fed her twice. Same story, awake just long enough to eat.

Then she dropped the 2/3am and started just waking up at 5:30/6am. She would eat and then go back to sleep til around 8:30 or 9. I could live with this. I was up for 30 minutes and then I could go back to bed for a bit and have time to get up and get ready before she woke up for the day. She continued on this way for about a month.


After a month of a solid schedule, out of nowhere, she started waking up at random times. Sometimes it was midnight (wha? -- had never been that early before), sometimes it was 4am and sometimes it was 2am AND 5am. What in the H?! Something had to change.

Our doctor told us that she was waking up multiple times now because WE had trained her to need a bottle to go back to sleep. Thus every time she woke she couldn't soothe herself back to a slumber. So it was our fault. Great. A plan was set forth.

The Plan:
1. Start by weaning the amount in each bottle (we were giving her 5oz)
2. Be quick! No talking. Feed and back to bed.
3. Quit rocking her to sleep at her bedtime.
4. Let her cry it out the second time she wakes after weaning for a week and each time she wakes after reducing the bottle amount to 2oz

So we set the plan in motion. And we had setbacks and excuses and we got the bottle down to 2oz and then didn't take the next step>>no more bottle. We were afraid and tired. We knew if we gave her the 2oz she would go back to sleep.

I had noticed something though. After the 2oz she wasn't falling asleep in my arms anymore. And she didn't seem all that interested in the bottle. She was down to only one wake again and I knew it was time. So one night, we cried it out. All of us, together (because I was in tears too, and Im sure the dog was crying on the inside from being annoyed). It took 30 minutes. Then the next morning she woke up and just moaned and mumbled to herself for 15 minutes, we didn't even go in. She went on with the moaning/mumbling for a few days and then nothing. Silence. Not a peep! I was worried something had happened to her. But no...our baby had slept through the night! We put a sticker on her memory calendar (this is a big deal folks!).

So here we are. Almost 9 months old and a solid week into sleeping through the night. She goes to bed with no fuss. Goes down at nap time without problems. It only took 9 long months to get here. But oh so worth the reward.


Goodnight sweetheart.