weight & height: 20.4 pounds and 27.5 inches long. Since we didn't have an appointment this month those are just good guesses, but the one thing we are certain about is that I'm growing fast! eating & sleeping: I really love baby food and have enjoyed every single one that mommy has given to me! I also tried a teething wafer this month as my first real "solid" food and wasn't too crazy about the texture; I made a face every time I tried to take a bite of it so that Mom & Dad would know exactly how I felt about it. Sleeping is going well; I'm officially moved into my flat bed and I love that it gives me more room to stretch out. Sometimes I'll wake up because teething is rough business, but as soon as I get my pacifier I go right back to sleep! I also started going to bed a little bit earlier this month, which Mommy & Daddy seem to like because it means that they get a little more free time and can get to bed a little earlier too! exciting firsts/milestones: This past month all of that teething pain finally paid off and my bottom two teeth finally popped through! I'm still getting used to having them in my mouth and have become quite the drool bug from trying to chew on everything I can get my hands on, and I'm constantly giving a crooked little smile to try to show them off. things I love: There are very few things that don't make this list right now, but if I had to narrow it down to a favorite five, I'd say that my most favorite things would include reading books (especially before bedtime), playing pat-a-cake with mommy, growling, playing outside, and my #1 favorite thing continues to be playing, talking, and laughing with my friends. Since I'm extremely sociable, I tend to make friends pretty much wherever I go! 😉 things I don't enjoy so much: Right now my least favorite thing is getting things taken away from me while I'm playing with them, especially people's cell phones. I've gotten quite good at throwing what Mommy calls a "big girl tantrum" whenever it happens, and Mommy & Daddy are continuing to try and figure out a way to make electronics less enticing (with so far no success). I've also become really empathetic of my friend's sad emotions, so if I happen to see H or another baby start to cry, then there's a pretty good chance that I'll start crying too. mom & dad's biggest parenting lesson so far: This past month Mommy had a lot of big plans to do lots of fun things and then takes lots of pretty pictures of all the fun things and then write about all of them on her blog. We had lots of fun adventures and did all of the fun things, and time and time again Mommy found herself in a situation where she got so caught up in having fun that she either forgot to take pictures completely, or maybe got a couple with the cell phone but none with her big camera. She found though that as nice as it is to have nice pictures of adventures, that the adventures themselves are the most important part, and that as long as everyone is having fun, it will always be ok to be more present than perfect or pretty. ❤️
Thank you so much for reading our little monthly update on Emery! We're at the tail end of these now, and it's a bittersweet feeling knowing that I'm already thinking about her first birthday party and realizing that I'm very soon going to have a very mobile baby/toddler!
As always, so much love to you all!
So, my No Spend New Year is coming to a close, and even though for the most part it's been a lot of fun, it hasn't been without it's temptations and challenges. One of said challenges has been Target's Dollar Spot, and this month it was especially hard to avoid because they had all of their Valentines decor up and it was seriously giving me a case of the love bug! I knew that I'd be so mad at myself if I broke my New Year's resolution on a $3 Valentine's decoration, so instead I set to work to create a fun little Valentine's craft/activity that I could do with H & Emery! I already had all of the supplies needed at home so it was completely free to do, and it makes for a fun little way to save my kid's artwork (or for H's mom to save his since she'll be getting his card soon 😉 ) . For me the biggest challenge was getting the right shaped heart cut out of the paper and free handing the "LOVE" on the front, so to make it easier for anyone reading that wanted to do this with your kids, I've also included a FREE card template that you can print at the bottom of the tutorial so that the hardest part is already completed for you!
skill level: easy | Total Time: 1 hour | Total Cost: FREE
And.... that's it! I know that it's not the most ingenious craft ever blogged about or created, but hopefully at the very least it'll provide a fun afternoon with the kiddos when it's too cold to go outside, or maybe even a cute, handcrafted Valentine to give to grandparents or moms/dads!
Hope you all enjoy! Thanks for reading & happy crafting!
weight & height: 19.8(ish) pounds and 26.75 inches long. We didn't have any doctor's appointments this month so these are just close guesses! eating & sleeping: Along with rice cereal, I've now officially moved into the realm of baby food, and so far I love it! I've only tried sweet potatoes so far but think they're delicious, and ever since learning how to eat from a spoon solid foods have been going well! Sleeping is still going pretty well; I'll still go for about an 11-12 hour stretch at night, and mommy & daddy are currently working to transition me into my flat bed from my rock n' play. exciting firsts/milestones: This last month I had a really exciting first with my first word which was MAMA!!!! Mommy was SO excited to hear that I'd made that my first word of choice, and even though Daddy is excited about it too, he's been consistently trying to get me to say "dada" ever since. 😉 things I love: Right now I love pretty much everything, but a few things that make the top of my list are talking to anyone who will listen, playing with toys, reading books with Mommy & Daddy, and chewing on anything that I can fit into my mouth. I've also gotten quite good at throwing things while sitting in my high chair, and if given toys to hold will throw them off almost immediately. things I don't enjoy so much: The thing that I enjoy the least right now is having to wait longer than a couple of minutes for anything that I'm wanting. Whether it's food, a nap, or just some attention, I've learned how to make quite the scene when I feel like I've been waiting long enough for something. mom & dad's biggest parenting lesson so far: Since I got all better from my cold in December and croup in the New Year, Mommy has noticed that she is feeling like she's finally getting a better routine down that allows her to spend lots of fun time with me, but also allows for her to do things for herself sometimes like reading a book before bed, exercising, or washing her hair & shaving her legs in the same shower. 😉 As hard as it can be for her (and a lot of moms from what I hear) to admit, sometimes taking a little bit of "me time" is exactly what is needed so that a mommy can have the energy needed to do everything she needs to for her kids.
I can't even believe while writing this that our little girl is already more than halfway through her first year of life. I've been flipping through her newborn pictures lately and wondering how on earth our baby has grown up so quickly! As always, thanks so much to everyone for reading and following along on her little journey, your love and support mean the world to us!
Since getting married 3 1/2 years ago (and especially since having a baby), I've really come to appreciate what were once extremely undervalued date nights. After a long week of work/school there's nothing more exciting than knowing that I'll get to spend some quality planned out time with my favorite person doing something that we both enjoy. The funny thing about date nights though is that the older Kyle & I become, the harder time we have actually making date nights happen. We still spend plenty of time together, but especially since Emery has joined our crew we spend much less time together that could be considered an actual "date night", nor do we have tons of extra cash laying around for us to spend on traditional date night activities. Back when we were newlyweds we had a bit more time to each other but still no cash because we were trying to save up for dental school, so we had to get kind of creative when it came to figuring out fun date nights. I decided to resurrect that fun/frugal mindset for our no-spend new year, and set to work to tweak 10 of your "traditional" date night ideas into dates that are slightly less traditional, but still just as fun! An added bonus is that the majority of them are also baby friendly, so if anyone out there is like us where your baby joins you on the majority of your dates, you can know that there's still some fun options out there for you too. 😉
That sums up our date night alternatives! Are there any favorites that you and your significant other have that aren't on my list? If so drop them in a comment below or share your free date nights on Instagram with #nospendnewyear so that we can all share in your fun ideas! I hope that everyone is having a great start to the year! I'd be lying if I said this no spend new year hasn't had a few temptations/challenges that I've had to turn away from, but it feels great to be able to save for a rainy day and still have fun in the process! Here's to the rest of January!
Dear Sweet Mama,
I'm writing to you today to share a short story in hopes that maybe you can relate; so that if you ever find yourself in a similar state of mind or situation, you can find peace in knowing that you're not alone and that you're doing a good job. I heard a statistic that stated that as a parent, one is able to feel higher emotional highs and lower lows than ever felt before having children. Since having Emery I've been blessed with experiences to feel those highest highs, but this last week has shown me what some of those darkest, lowest lows feel like, thus the point in my writing this story....
You see, this last week my sweet baby girl got sick with croup. Although I now know that croup is actually very common in young babies and toddlers, I didn't fully understand it at first, and in my mind my daughter had caught an illness equivalent to polio. The doctor in the emergency room made it sound like Emery's cough was no big deal (which was frustrating because the only reason that we went to the ER in the first place was because a doctor on the phone had told us to go in just in case she had croup) and I felt completely helpless because everything that the doctors were telling me to do to help the cough I already was doing with no success. All I knew for certain was that Emery had an awful cough, that it was the worst at night, and that somehow it had to be my fault that she was sick.
There were so many times in the middle of the night that Emery would wake up coughing and crying, and after calming her down and getting her back to sleep I would lie awake in bed unable to relax because I knew that another coughing attack was only a short 30 minutes to an hour away. It was during those dark hours in the night that I experienced some of those low points mentioned above, and the heavy sense of guilt and self-doubt was almost unbearable. I spent my nights blaming myself for taking Emery out in public too much, letting too many people hold her at the family Christmas parties, and wondering if she would have even gotten sick had she still been on breastmilk as opposed to formula. No matter the scenario I was always in the wrong, and the negativity combined with the lack of sleep wore on me phyisically, mentally, and emotionally.
Now that Emery is finally on the mend and I've had a chance to reflect on the situation with a more clear mind (and after several gentle reminders from my forever patient husband) I've come to learn an extrememly valuable lesson. Occassionaly as a parent, bad and/or scary experiences are going to happen with my children. I'm absolutely positive that there will be more colds, scraped knees, and possibly even another trip to the ER in my child's future and that is OK. It is not my fault, everything will turn out well in the end, and ultimately as long as I'm doing my part to love and take care of my child as much as I can and in the best way that I know how, then I am doing a good job as a mother, and guess what mama, SO ARE YOU. In fact, I bet that you're even doing a better job than you think. Society puts so much pressure on us as women and mothers to be "perfect", and even with how heavy that societal pressure is, I still feel like in many cases it's nowhere near as bad as the pressure that we put on ourselves.
So relax a little bit, go hug your babies tight, and know that you are an amazing woman and mother. If you feel like it, once you've been able to convince yourself of that insanely important truth, go tell another mama you know that they're doing an amazing job too. Despite how much happiness it brings, momming is definitely not the easiest job in the world, and I deeply believe that it's made a little bit easier with support from loved ones and friends. Thank you for letting me share my story with you, and know that I very much consider you a wonderful friend. ♥︎
I'm Chelsea. I'm a wife, mommy, photographer, and lover of life's little adventures. Join me here to celebrate the beautiful things in people and life.