Friday, March 15, 2013

Gimme a Break

Do we get out often?  No.  But we do get out!

I will say that without very time generous friends and family, we actually would not get out, but they feel bad for us.

Just to prove it, over the past month we've had several outings.  One for Dave's 30th birthday!!  Just went out to dinner, but that's all he wanted to do anyway.  For Valentine's Day it was a trip to Trader Joe's and The Chocolate Bar (my picks- I like food).  Then there were 2 weekends in a row I was a super nice wife and stayed home while Dave had some guy time with his friends.  Don't worry, there will be payback time!

Speaking of, I cashed in one girls night for a Bachelor finale viewing party!!  Many of my friends and I love to watch The Bachelor and gossip/make fun of it.  So, we decided to watch the finale together complete with bachelor style dining (paper plates, solo cups, pizza, wings, chips, etc.), a champagne toast to the happy engaged couple, and a dump cake to honor the poor girl ditched at the end.  A little Bachelor Bingo and prediction game were thrown in for fun too.  Overall, it was a blast!  Can't wait to have another one whenever the next season rolls around.

A little bubbly anyone?

Chit chatting

My lovely friends- check out our bling and roses!

One of our babysitters- they wore him out

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Lots of Changes

"Lots of changes, Old Max, lots of changes."  Just a little quote from one of my favorite movies of all time- Dirty Dancing.  And it happens to be quite applicable to our family the past few weeks.  The lots of changes part, not dirty dancing.

Andrew hit a skill explosion a couple of weekends ago.  Between Friday and Sunday the kid started crawling, pulling to a stand, using consonant sounds, controlling the walker extremely well, and switching between crawling and sitting positions with ease.  He's the only crawler at this point so he's rather enjoying terrorizing the others.  By terrorizing I mean stealing toys, crawling over them, and trying to pull up on them or me or any other random object that may or may not be good to pull up on.  He doesn't seem to mind toppling over though.  If the fridge or pantry is open he makes a beeline for them.  He is quite intrigued by the dog bowls and the dish towels hanging on the oven.  This has led to the beginnings of disciplining Andrew.  So far my firm "No Andrew!" (and I do mean firm- I've made kids cry with my "No!") gets a slight pause and a belly laugh.  Could he be my troublemaker?  Wondering how we're going to handle all of them moving about at the same time?  Me too.

How we found Andrew after his morning nap- so proud of himself!
Obviously Andrew's changes has led to other changes- major childproofing!  After plugging all the outlets and moving things off shelves, etc.  we decided it'd be easier just to block off major problem areas.  This was the initial solution...

This worked for a week or so.  Then we decided to take it up a notch and just make a big baby corral so we'd have a safe place for all of them to play together with their toys.  This is in addition to our old dining room, which is now blocked off as a play area.

The new living room arrangement
Moving on...

Ben has finally decided to roll!!  Well, maybe just from his tummy to his back, but that's a start.  Since he loves being on his back and hates being on his tummy, I'm not sure if he'll ever be motivated to go from his back to his tummy.  Here's how Benny Boo feels about his new skill:

Remember Allison?  The difficult one to feed?  Who we papoosed and spent hours trying to make her take a bottle?  Well, now she's one of the easiest to deal with!  She is the best with finger foods- pincer grasp and all.  A few weeks ago she figured out how to hold her own bottle and sippy cup and that's all it took.  Hand it to her and she does the rest.  However, when she's done, she's done.  Little Miss Independent.  I predict a lot of "Mommy I do it" out of her.

Yes I am saving that blueberry for later.
Levi's helmet is really working!!  The doc said his head's about 50% corrected in just 5 weeks.  Unfortunately, Levi had a rash on his back which got to his head and went out of control in the nice warm, moist helmet environment.  It's being treated and MUCH better now, but it got him a few days of helmet freedom.  Here was Levi's reaction to the whole ordeal:

Leah has also made many changes in the last month.  The girl went from gaining 3-4 oz/month to 14oz in one month!  Hoping to keep this trend going.  Although she still spits up a lot, it's much improved and she's slowly improving on the solids as well.  She is also smiling intentionally now.  She especially loves when we sing to her.  Her favorite song (as well as her siblings') is "Itsy Bitsy Spider".  Seeing her sweet smile just makes my heart happy.  She has also started spending time in "the office" (exersaucer) and balancing herself in a sitting position.  
First day in the office

Listening to her favorite songs
Leading the teeth count is Miss Caroline with 4 (2 top, 2 bottom).  Allison has 2 bottom and Andrew has 2 bottom.  That's all we have so far.  All the boys are babbling using consonant sounds constantly and Caroline just started as well.  Levi is rocking on his hands and knees, so we suspect he'll be the next crawler.  Caroline has no interest in crawling, but can sure walk if you hold her hands for balance.  

Caroline laughing
The last big change of late is the addition of the morning snack and sippy cup.  They are now getting 3 spoon feedings (breakfast, lunch, dinner), 2 snacks (morning and afternoon), bottles after breakfast and dinner, and sippy cups during the day.  Still quite a bit of work needed on self feeding, but we'll get there.  I am beginning to see the faint glow at the end of the tunnel where there are no bottles and babies can feed themselves.

Enjoying an afternoon in the backyard
Did I mention they'll be 1 next month?