Friday, March 20, 2015

5 on Friday

Hello and happy Friday! Here is my 5 on Friday list, although I don't have photos for all of them so some of it is just my thoughts.

1. That face. I LOVE wearing Jensen in my Moby wrap. It is so sweet to feel him up against me and to look down and see those chubby cheeks. I wore Eva in the wrap some but will probably use it even more for Jensen since he is the second child. It helps me be hands free so I can play with Eva and at the same time feel like I am holding him. The best tip I read for the Moby is to put it on at home before you go somewhere if you are planning to wear your baby, that way you aren't struggling with the million yards of fabric dragging along a dirty floor. This tip has been super helpful for me.

2. I mentioned in her 3 1/2 year post that Eva has become quite the little artist. She loves to paint, draw, write with pens - you name it. This is great and it really does calm her down. The only thing is that we are left with tons of paper all over the place. I would use a notebook but with paint that doesn't work. And she doesn't always want to use dry erase type materials. I get it. It is way more fun to make individual drawings. So usually I just let everything sit out for a day, move it to a pile in case she wants to look at it again, and then discreetly recycle papers throughout the week.
3. I got a new {used} minivan! I am waaaayyyy too excited about this. Last week we sold Ryan's truck, he took over my Camry, and I got a Toyota Sienna. In all seriousness, this was my dream car. When Ryan and I were thinking through car options after selling his truck I told him that my dream would be to purchase a used, dependable minivan. A minivan may not be the coolest car ever, but for a mom with multiple kids it is so spacious and convenient. I love that I can open the doors and trunk with a button. Eva can climb in, push the button to shut her door, and buckle herself in her car seat all by herself now. This is huge! I really like the fold down seats in the back so that when we stock up at Costco I can fit all those rolls of toilet paper inside. No more squishing and hoping everything will fit in the car. When we took Eva on her first ride in the van she climbed in and said, "This is so cool! This van is amazing!" Out of the  mouths of babes....

4. On Wednesday we finally headed outdoors to do some yard work. All that melted snow has made for some lovely over grown weeds now. Let me tell you, yard work may not be my favorite thing to do, but it is much better when it is 60 degrees outside and you are not pregnant than when it is 100 degrees in August and you are pregnant.

5. And finally I will end with one of my new resolutions: put down my iPhone. I could defend myself and say that I am "not as bad" as some people about having my phone out, but this is something I feel is really important. Yes, I like my phone and it is super convenient. Yes, there are some apps that make life easier and social media is fun {hello, I write a blog and I love to post photos of my family and look at other people's photos - obviously I'm not anti technology or anti social media}. I just want to be very intentional about when I get my phone out. When I'm at home taking care of the kids and playing with them, or hanging out with friends, or even just watching TV with the husband, I am really going to try to just set my phone aside. Not never, ever use it, just use it way less. I have noticed a huge change in Eva when her screen time in limited compared to when we let her use our phones or iPad more. I'm pretty convinced that being on devices like these actually change your brain and your tendency to respond positively towards others. This is in no way a knock against fellow iPhone users, it is merely my personal feeling. I want to focus more on being truly connected with the wonderful people in my life that I am with in the moment. All that other stuff can wait.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

St. Patrick's Day with the O'Bradleys

Yesterday was St. Patrick's day, and for the first time in a while our family enjoyed a wee bit of celebration.  I could care less about most grown up versions of celebrating this holiday. I don't like beer or big crowds....I do like having fun with my children. We started the day with dressing up our little leprechaun in a crazy green wig. You're welcome, Jensen! That's what happens when your daddy does Young Life.
We made sure to take a family photo of all of us dressed in our best green apparel...turns out that we don't own very much green. 
Then we had a fun play date with my friend Ashley and her little girl, Ruby. I know some moms throw amazing green and rainbow themed play dates but ours was more tame. Ashley was nice enough to bring me a chicken pot pie (for dinner) and some chocolate muffins, I offered her a glass of our finest water. Eva got out her new bubble gun and things got silly. It was Jensen's first time to meet his little buddy and you can tell he was super excited. Haha, I'm sure their friendship will grow in time....also he had just woken up and was hungry. Eva on the other hand adored Ruby and did such a great job being gentle with her.
After our friends left we went out to play in the front yard. Eva played with her rice sensory tub for a bit. Before you think I'm some super creative mom for making her a sensory tub, let me share a secret. I made this box of rice plus random things last year for her for Valentines day. I had every kind of Pinterest intention to change it up for each holiday but I never have. She doesn't care. We get it out on pretty days and she is happy playing.
She also rode her tricycle and scooter around. I love the rain boots + dress + Dora helmet look she had going on. 
When Ryan got home from work we took the kids to the BNHS baseball game. Jensen's first sporting event :) I am completely germaphobic for my still very newborn baby, but it was such a beautiful day and I am so ready to not be in the house all day. I packed plenty of antibacterial wipes and was definitely a crazy mom keeping all hands and objects clean.

After dinner we came home, took showers and baths, and I was in my pajamas watching Dora with Eva by 6:45 PM. It was lovely and quite and peaceful. I enjoyed a post dinner snack of Lucky Charms and called it a night.

Monday, March 16, 2015

3 1/2 years

Hello, my sweet Eva! Last week your officially became "three and a half." Our world has been a whirlwind of learning to accommodate you AND your new baby brother so this post will be a bit short, and a tad late.

You are the best big sister that Jensen could ask for. You greet him with a great big "Good morning, buddy!" every single day, cover him in kisses, help with diaper changes, and love to sit on the ground and play with him. You are dying to pick him up, but for now you are able to hold him carefully in your lap. I can't wait to see you and Jensen grow as siblings and play together in the years to come. The other day you hugged him, looked at me with a huge grin and said, "We are best friends. We love each other so much." My heart melted.
Look at that smile! One of my favorite things about you at this age is when you are doing things that you know will make us laugh. Whether it is one of your funny sayings {"Woah, woah, woah. What are you talking about?} or your dance moves {Back it up sister, back it up!} you can make us giggle so much. You also have inherited your daddy's taste for pop music. I'm not the biggest fan of some of the crazy songs y'all dance to, but I love that is is a special bond for the two of you to share.

The other day I was bent over helping you put your shoes on and you asked, "Mama, why do you have white parts in your hair?" I looked up at said, "It's not white. It's gray. It just happens to people when they get older." {and have crazy children...}You responded very sadly and said, "But I don't want you to be so old." Haha, ouch. I think I have a few good years left in me. But seriously, I need to start a book of all your funny sayings. 
A few months ago you started gymnastics and you love it. You spend 50% of each day doing flips, hand stands, and cartwheels all over the house.

In the past few weeks I feel like your ability to do "pretend play" has really started to develop. Your imagination has grown! You recently switched from "nap time" to "rest time" where we let you play quietly in your room and I think having that hour on your own to play has helped you be more creative with your toys. You also love all Disney movies and really love all the Golden books that go along with them. When we are driving in the car you will often come up with random questions about the movies or books and spend the whole drive asking me all about it. I love that you are always thinking, although sometimes I might be okay with a moment or two of quiet :) You are very chatty these days!
Look at those long legs! Lately you just look so tall. I notice it and our friends comment on it a lot lately. You are 37" tall and 28 lbs now, so you have grown a bit over the past 6 months.

You are also so smart! You know all of your capital letters and lots of the lower case letters too. You can count reliably up to about 15, and then stumble your way up to 20. When you have a good "rest time" you can earn a little fuzzy pom pom to put in a jar for a prize later on. The other day you said, "I have 5 right now. If I earn one more today, then I will only have three left. Then the next day I could only have two left. Then one left. Then my prize!" I couldn't believe you figured that out all in your head!
Eva Kate, I love you tons. The other day you told me, "Mama, I love you so much AND a little bit." Yes, we have some hard days. Being three and a half brings out some strong emotions in you, and there are days when it can be frustrating. But you are my absolute favorite little girl in the whole world and I am always thankful to be your mama.

You have started telling me that you are growing up. Oh, sweet girl, I don't need that reminder. I see it every day. You have told me very clearly that you have to grow big enough to go to kindergarten one day. At least I still have a few years before that will be all too quickly.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

One Month Old

Jensen at ONE MONTH
Weight: 20.5 inches (29th percentile)
Height: 9 lbs, 5 oz (40th percentile)

Clothing: Still in newborn but we will probably be moving into your 3 month clothes in a week or so.
Diaper: Moved up to a size 1

Likes: drinking milk, being swaddled, snuggling, lying on your play mat, looking at lights, being swaddled

Dislikes: having your diaper changed, taking a bath, getting dressed

Nicknames: buddy, little guy

Sleep Schedule: Most of the day, you are a great sleeper! Your favorite place to sleep is in your swing but you do well in your crib, too. We have a cute cradle in our bedroom but your are too loud to share our room at night. Your "night time" is from 11 PM - 9 AM.

Feeding Schedule: You eat every 2-3 hours. At night I feed you one last time before I go to bed, Daddy feeds you a bottle around 1 AM, I feed you around 4-5 AM, and then you eat right when you "wake up" for the day.

Jensen, you are the most relaxed baby. The few times we have taken you somewhere people always comment on how calm you are. You spend your days mostly eating and sleeping. The past few days you have started being awake for longer period of time (like an hour or so) which is fun because we actually get to play with you more.

One month has gone by fast but it also seems like you have worked your way perfectly into our family. I can't imagine being a family without you in our lives now! We are all so in love with your little, chubby self.

It's also possible that nobody loves you more than your big sister. Eva is always wanting to hold you, help with your bottle, pick out your diaper, show you her toys, get you a binkie or burp clothe or help rock your swing. She kisses and hugs you all day long. That girl is your biggest fan. You are so patient and really let her love on you as long as she is gentle.

Happy One Month, Jensen!

Monday, March 2, 2015

To the father of my children

Okay, so I know Valentines is way past (Hello, March!) and that some people will think this post is too mushy, but I just had to write out a big THANK YOU to my wonderful husband. This man has been so wonderful and helpful lately that he deserves some extra praise. He was always great when it was just me, him, and Eva, but now with the addition of Jensen he has really gone above and beyond.  
Confession: sometimes when he walks in the door it can be easy for me to come across as too easily irritated with him, when the reality is that I'm just tired and maybe a little stressed from taking care of two very dependent little people all day. The truth is that Ryan is an amazing husband and daddy. The other night I was thinking about when we were in the hospital and I would be up pumping milk every few hours all night long. Most of the time Ryan would make the long walk down to where Jensen was just to hand off the little bottle of fresh milk. He didn't have to do this. The nurses station was right outside of my room and they told us we could hand it over to them to take, especially in the middle of the night. But most times Ryan took it. I didn't realize until this past week why he did that - he wanted to see Jensen :) He wanted to just peek in and check on him. He wanted to pray over him. He made that extra effort to love on Jensen even though he couldn't even hold him or feed him yet.

Now that we are adjusting to our routine at home, Ryan gets up to do Jensen's first "middle of the night" feeding around 1 AM almost every night. When it was just Eva, I rarely ever asked Ryan to give her a bottle at I could probably count on one hand the times and it was usually only when I was sick. It wasn't that Ryan didn't offer, I just figured it was easier. Eva never really took to a bottle and since it was only her I could sleep during the day while he had to work. Two  kids is a whole different game! I am lucky to get to rest for a short time during Eva's rest (if that actually happens) and I am way more exhausted. Then the other day it hit me that Ryan actually likes to help feed Jensen at night. Since he is at work during the day and helping with Eva a lot in the afternoon, giving Jensen at late night bottle is a special time for them. How sweet is that?

And let me give this wonderful husband some props for helping with Eva. We love Eva. That girl has some major energy. When I am exhausted and at my breaking point Ryan tries his best to keep her entertained and cared for. Thank goodness there are two of us, because our sweet girl definitely needs to attention and energy of two parents. I know there must be days where he works long hours at work and then comes home to pour more energy into having a dance party with Eva, and I really appreciate it. 
There are moments when we might feel like two trains passing in the night, as we shuffle back and forth between feeding the baby and tucking in the three year old (again...) after she had a scary dream. There are moments when we get to steal a few laughs sitting at the table late at night, sneaking brownies after the children are finally asleep. There are sleepy moments when we feel so tired that we aren't sure how to make it off the couch after a good marathon of Parenthood. And through all of these moments, I love him so very much. Thank you, Ryan, for all that you do.