A Third Chair at the Table

At four months babies can start eating solid food.  In preparation for Stretchy eating, we bought her a seat for the table.  We might have gone the actual high-chair route, but we really don't have the space.  This travel baby chair is pretty awesome and it takes up less space than a normal chair at the table.  AND it looks really comfy.  I wonder if they make them in grown-up sizes?
At first she seemed a little confused...

But then decided she liked it.

Metzker liked it too.

I guess the typical first foods are vegetable purees and cereals.  We're thinking about Baby Led Weaning, where the baby starts eating real food when they're interested instead of being spoon fed.  Stretchy isn't quite ready for this yet, but since she's sitting at the dinner table now, I figured we'd see how she liked real food.

Food 1:  Squash.
Stretchy's Reaction:  Seemed to like it.
Amount eaten:  Sucked off some juice.


Stretchy's First Swim!

Let me start by saying that babies in bathing suits on beach chairs are absolutely the cutest thing in the entire world.  I must also credit the humidity in the pool area for making what would have been an awesome photo even awesomer- I mean, I don't know how to make my camera do that on my own.  So thanks humidity!

This weekend has been a weekend full of visitors.  Bob's brother visited and my aunt came to town.  Might have something to do with school vacation starting Monday... 

While the guys were off doing "boy things," my aunt, my mom (who never passes up and excuse to come visit her granddaughter), Stretchy and I went swimming in the hotel pool where my mom and aunt were staying.  

She's a natural fish.  She LOVED it.  Even the getting dunked underwater part (what? you're not supposed to do that to babies?)

Cutest thing ever.  That's all I have to say.  Here's a video to prove it.


My Personal Trainer

A mom's body just isn't the same after having a baby.  Period.  If yours is, congratulations, I hate you, and stop reading this now.

There are an insane number of workout videos, books, CDs, you name it- all with the promise to help shed the baby weight.  I suppose when you consider that 80% of women have had a child (roughly? the number was 82% in 2008, its probably a lucrative business.  

I was naive enough to think that I would have time to work out and bought a book and a video.  I have done the video exactly 0 times.  I read the book and did a couple exercises... um... twice?  I suppose if, unlike me, you have a baby that naps for more than 30 minutes at a time or more than 3 times a day, you are lucky, I hate you, and again, stop reading.  If I actually tried to do a workout video, I'm pretty sure this is what would happen:

Rock baby to sleep.  Put baby down.  Baby fusses.  Pick baby up.  Rock some more.  Put baby down.  tiptoe upstairs so baby doesn't wake up.  Change into workout clothes.  Find DVD.  Turn it on, with very low volume.  Start workout.  Stretch.  Do something that involves a jumping movement.  Startle baby.  Freeze.  Stare at baby to make sure she goes back to sleep.  Wait a couple minutes to make sure she really is asleep.  Resume workout.  Complete 2 exercises.  Baby wakes up.  And its a wrap... I'm pretty sure those two exercises aren't going to do anything for me.

So I've wasted a few bucks on some workouts that I probably won't ever do again...

Good news is, I've found a solution.  A personal trainer.  Usually personal trainers are expensive- $50 a session.  I've found one for free.  The exercises she's taught me are great- body weight exercises with high reps.  She's available at all hours of the day and is teaching me that you can squeeze in a workout just about anywhere any time.

Because I'm a nice person, I'm going to share her exercise that guarantees a six pack in under 4 months.  She started out with a pot belly and I can definitely see her results!

Anytime you are lying down, preoccupy yourself with something fun and reverse crunch away:


Happy Valentine's Day

To start this post, I've never really been a fan.

BUT, I have to admit, I am kind of a sucker for cute Valentine's art projects and cookies.

I had big plans: cute window hangings, handprint Valentines, cute heart-shaped cookies...

And yet, here it is, Valentine's Day, and my windows are bare, no one is receiving Valentines and while I would love a sugar cookie, there are none to be found.

We got sick :(

Being sick is no fun.  Being sick with a baby is no fun-er.  And being sick with a sick baby is just about the worst thing ever.  Not only do you not want to play, but baby doesn't want to play either.  Baby wants to cry.  You are tired and don't know how to make baby stop crying, and that, in turn, makes you want to cry.  It's been a long couple days.

Fortunately, we were both feeling well enough to at least do something a little Valentine-y...

Here are some pictures of a baby in a tutu.  What could possibly be cuter than that??


Project Closet: Complete

As you may know, I am addicted to Pinterest.  Since joining, I've realized that Stretchy's room needed a little bit more.  The paint on the walls is perfect- just how I pictured it.  The animal mural makes me smile every time I see it.  BUT, as we accumulate baby things I've realized that her room needs storage.  With a couch, a bathroom door and two closets, there wasn't any wall space for shelves that she'll be able to access for toys and books.

Intro: Project Closet.

I've pinned many a kid's closet to my Pinterest boards and finally used that inspiration to create a closet perfect for my soon-to-be-toddler's jungle bedroom.

Here is a picture of one of the closets (this one we actually use to store all our junk):

Nothing fancy.  Picture one closet rod, two upper shelves.  Same thing in the closet on the right (of course, not pictured...)

Now, here is a picture of the new and improved closet.  Might I add that I thought this would be an easy project to do a little bit at a time while Stretchy napped during the day.  Turns out, it was an entire two day project.  BUT, well worth it!
I used ClosetMaid organizers, added fun colored luan, a few built in shelves, and stacked closet rods.
In a year or so, all toys, books, games, play clothes and shoes will be easily accessible to a crawling (and walking?) toddler!


My Baby is All Grown Up

As any nursing mom can tell you, feeding a baby makes you SO THIRSTY.  All. the. time.  More often than not I'm balancing a baby on one arm while waiting impatiently at the fridge for the water dispenser to fill my giant plastic cup.  I must also either dance, sway or bounce during this time or said baby gets even more impatient than thirsty mom.

Lately, as I've been drinking water during all our play-time activities, Stretchy has become very interested in what's going on in that cup.  She stares, oogles, talks to and reaches for it almost every time I pick it up to take a sip.

A couple days ago, on my way to the fridge, with just a drop left, she grabbed the cup with both hands and brought it to her mouth.  Does she do this with all her toys?  Yes.  Is a cup a pretty rattling toy?  No.  So I thought, "Hey, maybe she's really thirsty too."

I was right on:

Pretty soon she'll be sitting at the table with a full set of silverware...


Super Bowl Snacks and Baby-Love

1. I have a hangover.  Not a drinking hangover (though after Stretchy went to bed, I did have a beer or two), but a food hangover.  We didn't go out to a Superbowl party or have people over or anything.  It was just me and Bob and a whole bunch of terrible for you, fried, frozen appetizers.  SO YUMMY.  Food-love.  However, this morning I feel like a piece of ****.  Fun.

2.  Baby-Love.  Last night was not a good sleeping night.  Stretchy was up 3 times instead of her usual one or two.  I was tired (and beginning my food hangover).  This morning at 6am I did not want to wake up.  BUT, Stretchy was SO CUTE this morning, that she totally made up for it.  I got a gillion smiles and even a bunch of giggles.  And now she is napping.  Happy Mom (if only I wasn't food-hungover, it would be a fantastic start to a day).


My Baby, The Genius

Just saying, Stretchy is awesome and can totally read books now :)


Time. I've Lost Mine, Can I Borrow Some of Yours?

Let's start by saying that before I had a babbling, rolling, giggling, smiling, energetic baby on my hands I actually wondered in those last months of pregnancy, what I was going to do with myself during the day once she arrived.  SERIOUSLY??

Let me continue by saying that the few posts I've managed to write in the past few days have occurred for the following reasons.  1. My parents were here and successfully managed to entertain the baby for a while.  2. I have decided that despite my New Year's resolution to be more organized, which resulted in a cleaning schedule, that cleaning is not the best use of my time. 3. Stretchy is taking a nap.

Since she was born, I have gone from having all the time in the world.  Time which I used to fill with mindless activities like browsing the internet, playing mindless solitaire games on the computer, drawing random doodles, trying new recipes, shopping at stores by walking down every single aisle, and even, on occasion, napping.

For some reason, now that I have zero time, I continually think of things that I never did WHEN I HAD TIME, but that seem imperative now that I don't.  Like making a home organization binder, redoing my teaching portfolio, making a book of our photos from our year in Dresden, sleeping...

In fact, now it seems that I have actually managed to have negative time.  Negative time occurs when you not only have zero time to get anything done, but when it seems that the time you might have to get things done is so minimal that it doesn't exist.  It causes all "things that need to get done" to pile up so that you become so overwhelmed that even when you have time, you cannot utilize it because you are so befuddled by those "things" that you don't know where to start and are fairly certain that even if you did start, you wouldn't be able to finish and would probably just add to the list rather than be able to cross things off.

Stretchy naps about 3 times a day.  Awesome?  Sure, it would be.  If she ever slept for more than 20 minutes.  20 minutes allows for the completion of the following household tasks:  emptying 1/2 the dishwasher, washing 6.8 dishes, putting in 1.2 loads of laundry, folding 20 items, putting away a laundry basket full of items, except those 4 things, making a bed, taking a shower and getting dressed, writing 4/5 of a blog post, or most often, checking e-mail (resulting in the use of the remaining 19.5 minutes mindlessly surfing the internet).

So, how about it.  I've lost all my time.  Can I borrow some?