Saturday, March 26, 2011

8 Months

Holt is 8 months! And this going to sound crazy but I'm already thinking about planning his First Birthday Party! This is nuts. This has been my first month home with him everyday and the transition is easier than I thought. The days just fly by and I love having the freedom to do whatever we choose. So far I do not miss getting up at 5am and fighting an hour long commute to sit at a desk for 8 hours. It's been such fun to see him learning new things and taking in his surroundings. He finds one sound he wants to make and he makes it all day long. The next day you ask him to make the same sound and he's on to something else already. One day he says dadadadadadadada all day. The next it's just hours of raspberries. The next, his tarzan yell as I like to call it. He beats on his chest and says "ohhhhh ohhhhh ahhhhhhh ahhhhhhhhhhhh" He can do this forever. He's quite the little character. I predict a very strong personality for him. He has no problems letting you no when he is not happy or he is frustrated. Holt can be very laid back and chill, but the second he wants to move on, you better let him. My mom calls him "Hyper Diaper" because he is always moving! When he's eating he's kicking his foot or grabbing your face. He's never just STILL. I'm shocked he isn't crawling yet because he is so ready to be on the move. I'm not complaining that he isn't crawling either. I'm savoring what is most likely my last month to say that. As much as he appears to want to crawl, he just can't figure out how to get his legs under him and make that happen. When I put his legs under him, he just falls on his side and rolls. He's an expert roller. He does have very strong legs and likes to stand. When I go to sit him down, he puts his legs out in protest because he wants to stand. I think he might just up and walk one day instead of crawl, we'll see. Here are some of his 8 month likes and dislikes:

-Pulling your hair, and he's great at finding the most tender part of your head and pulling that hair
-Giving kisses, mostly to Mommy
-All things paper. He has 3 toys on his shopping cart cover to play with, but prefers the shopping list
-Phones and remote controls
-Bath time! He can finally sit and play in the tub.
-Sucking on his washcloth
-Hearing himself make any noise. He's so so loud.
-Head butts my shoulder or his mattress when he's sleepy
-Smacking his lips
-More and more obsessed with Bentley every month
-Walks in the stroller

-When you take something away from him. He has tantrums. I'm scared of age 2.
-Trying to crawl. He gets very frustrated now. He knows he needs to do something, just can't figure out what.
-His car seat for long periods
-Waiting for his food in the high chair

-9 month clothes
-Size 3 diapers
-About 18lbs or so, maybe more
-Babbles, a lot
-Working on waving
-Mimics, not immediately, he thinks about it for awhile
-Can go from sitting to laying without hurting himself in the process
-Holds himself standing, momentarily

Monday, March 14, 2011

Change in Diet

As those of you with kids know, being a Mom changes your way of thinking about everything. When I'm feeding Holt his solids, I realize how pure he is. He has not ingested anything processed or artificial. (With maybe the exception of his organic rice cereal and oatmeal). I planned to make his own baby food, not only for the savings, but for the nutritional value. This didn't happen, yet. Once I saw the only ingredients in the baby food was in fact the vegetable mixed with water, I realized it was okay. As I raise my son, I realize how much processed food is around us. It is advertised everywhere. Grocery stores are larger than they used to be to house this type of food. What did our mom's give us as snacks when we grew up? What did their moms give them as snacks when they grew up? I guarantee you it didn't come packaged.

Holt is so empty and pure of these unpronounceable additives, that I question how long I can keep it that way. I'm not a proponent of organic or gluten free or anything extreme like that, but I do think you can simplify the food you put into your body. Once you add something back into their diet they aren't used to, like gluten, that has got to take a toll on their digestive system. I don't want to create a monster by keeping him from certain natural ingredients, I am just saying, I want to change my ways so I can be a good example for him. Kyle asked me what I ate yesterday and how much of it was processed. Unfortunately, everything I consumed yesterday had been processed. Right down to the dinner from a box we had. If you think about that, it is truly just wrong you can consume something from a box.

Kyle and I watched Dateline last week and they talked about The Caveman Diet. A diet that consisted of meat, fish, whole grains, and fresh fruits and vegetables. He really wants to try and adopt some of this into our lives. I must say, I agree. I heard a dietitian say once, if you can unwrap it, don't eat it. I wish we lived closer to a Whole Food or Central Market so I could get more fresh ingredients. The produce at the stores around me is terrible. I don't think we can cut everything processed from our diets, but it is motivating for me to try and think outside the box. Literally. I'm not a fan of fish, but I can certainly keep trying different ones until I like it.

Shame on me if I turn to yogurt in a tube and sugary snacks wrapped in packaging to keep him fulfilled. Our moms didn't do it for us, so just because it is convenient these days, doesn't mean we should cave in to the marketing ploys. Don't get me wrong, there will be days as he grows where he will enjoy some of these types of snacks and foods, I just don't want it to be a staple. He will enjoy fruit snacks, granola bars, cookies, ice cream, etc. and I will continue to enjoy them as well. I am just going to make a more conscious effort to eat less processed foods, and more whole foods for the overall health of my family.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Couple Retreat

I say couple, because it was singular, as in just me and my hubby! Kyle travels a lot with his job and this past week he had a conference in Jacksonville, FL at Ponte Vedra Inn and Club. A couple months back his colleague suggested that he bring me along because it was a beautiful location and there would be some down time. How nice of him to offer. So when Kyle first mentioned this, my first thought was, how long will I be leaving Holt? Second thought, how much breastmilk is that going to be? (112 ounces to be exact) Needless to say I managed to get through both. My mom was gracious enough to come and watch Holt for the week. I think they both enjoyed themselves very much. Although on Friday afternoon she said, "I'm glad you are home." And went to take a nap.

We left on Tuesday afternoon and flew home Friday morning. It was just the right amount of time. Kyle must have asked me every week leading up to this trip, "Are you sure you want to go? Are you sure you can leave Holt?" Of course I wanted to go and yes I was sad about leaving Holt for that long. My mom encouraged me not to worry and go, and relax. Ahhh, relax, what did that word even mean? I had forgotten since July 20, 2010 when this little bundle of joy blessed my life. Did I cry, you betcha. I held it together all the way to the airport but actually getting out of the car and kissing him goodbye was gut wrenching. He was so happy and making all his cute little sounds. Once I got inside the airport, I was fine the rest of the trip.

So the real point of this blog is to emphasize how important I think it is that Kyle and I get away together every 2-3 months. To go back to just being a couple, husband and wife, was great. Don't get me wrong, we both love being parents to our crazy little boy. It's more about how quickly you can forget how to just be a couple once this little person comes into your life. We weren't stressed, I didn't have anything to stress about, he didn't have to hear me was bliss. Our biggest decision all week was, "margarita or pina colada?" as we sat by the pool on Wednesday. And the only day we sat by the pool because we were burnt to a crisp. This bod hasn't seen the sun in about 2 years. It was refreshing to take on just one role for a few days and that was the role of WIFE. Although he had meetings to attend and we went to networking functions at night, just to be away in a new setting was such a breath of fresh air. We still enjoyed breakfast and dinner together though. By Thursday night we were ready to come home and see Holt again. We both missed him terribly! I hope I can tag along for more trips in the future. It is just so important that you feel that connection to your significant other all the time, and if you have children, you know how easy it is to lose that connection. After almost a week together, the most time we have spent alone since our Honeymoon, I will miss Kyle when he goes back to the office tomorrow. It was a much needed break for me and I'm sure refreshing for him to have me all to himself for a few days.

View from our porch

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Traumatic Walk

I must blog about this traumatic walk I decided to take with Bentley and Holt last week. It was traumatic for all 3 of us. Part of my job description according to my husband is to take Bentley on more walks, a chore that he has neglected since Holt was born. No problem, Holt and I are happy to get out and get some fresh air. Now I noticed how windy it was before leaving the house, but it was the perfect temperature outside so I didn't give it much thought. How could I have forgotten how much the wind terrifies my son!?! We start out great, Bentley is cooperating, Holt is enjoying sitting up in his big boy stroller, and I am getting some exercise. (My second round that day might I add, I had a morning treadmill session as well)

We get to the lake in our neighborhood. This will be fun. I can point out the ducks to Holt, Bentley can do his business on public grounds and not in someone's yard...awesome. Problem number one...the sun is beaming in our faces the direction we need to turn. Problem number two...Holt is holding his breath, shaking his hands and legs violently as the wind beats him in the face. This is not just a breeze, this is full out, lose your balance wind. I immediately turn the stroller around so he can breathe and get down to his level so I can calm him down and wipe away his tears. I feel horrible. So I go the other direction away from the sun and the wind, no problem, we'll just go the long way. I continue to take turns that will lead us away from the sun and the wind. Oh my gosh, where am I? I'm at least a half a mile from home at this point. Bentley has run out of waste to excrete, I'm realizing that no matter what I will have to face the wind and the sun to get back home, but luckily Holt is happy. So I reach the end of the street where I have to make this turn. I stand there making Holt laugh so I can distract him from the trauma he is about to endure. I bring the umbrella part of his stroller down all the way in front of him, solves the sun problem. Bentley looks at me with his tongue hanging out so far it's about to touch the concrete. He's used to 5 minute long walks and even those haven't happened in about 6 months. I start jogging, Bentley is dragging, Holt looks at me like I'm the worst mother in the world as he starts to hold his breath and cry. Bentley takes the lead in front of me as I jog next to the stroller, against the wind, guiding it with one hand as I sing, make faces, and tell Holt how much fun we're having. He's laughing, thank goodness. Ok he's not laughing anymore, now he's terrified. We...are...almost...there.

What was probably 30 seconds, felt like 3 hours. I'm winded, Bentley is about to take a nap in the next yard he comes across, and Holt is reassuring me that this is the worst idea I have ever had. We make it to the next street where we can turn, no sun and no wind. Everyone is happy. Except me, I now realize there will be one more straightaway that we cannot avoid to get home. We make the turn. Again the wind begins slapping us all in the face. No matter how many times I tell Holt, "You're fine! You're ok!" He's not buying it. This street is pretty straight, so I decide I can walk it backwards pulling the stroller instead of pushing it. That is hard to do with Bentley in my other hand. So I keep the stroller pointing the other directions and pull it with my right hand as I continue to hold Bentley's leash in my left hand. Awesome, here comes a man walking his dog. Luckily Bentley is way too tired to pay attention to the other dog and he keeps on walking. I wish I could have seen how ridiculous I looked walking down the street pulling my stroller and walking a dog. We finally made it home, and we are all traumatized. What just happened? That was the worst 20 minutes EVER. Bentley collapsed on the floor, Holt was so happy to be inside with his toys and me holding him, and I was ready for some wine. I haven't been brave enough to venture out with the stroller again. Whew.