Thursday, March 28, 2013

our life lately. through iPhotos!

yikes, it's been two weeks!!  and my last post wasn't the most happiest bright shiny thing to have left up here for all that time.  ah well, life is busy ya know?  and busy we've been.

we spent one of the last two weeks roadtripping down to utah to see my fam & sam's family all in the same vacay.  it was a blast.  i honestly wasn't looking forward to this trip as much as i usually do... it's about 14 hours each way & with a toddler & a 7 month old, i didn't know what to expect.  they were rockstars.  we did almost all the driving on the way down at night while they slept & then drove home straight through a day and still they slept.  my kids are awesome.

so there was lots of shopping, food, friends & family.  sam went to two rounds of the ncaa tournament & i spent loads of time with my sisters, nieces & nephews & in-laws.

now that we've been home almost a week i'm starting to feel allllmost caught up.  my life has been revolving around my running training plan {running a 10k in a month & a half}, my business {per the usual} & my training to be a Stroller Strides instructor!  i took my test last night & passed & dudes, i'm official.  i'm a certified stroller strides instructor... boom.  oh yeah & my kids.  but what else is new.

parker & elliot are so freaking fun right now.  they are a handful but i am just loving this stage we're in... for the most part.  ha!  parker wants to do nothing more than wrestle elliot 24/7 & elliot is getting SO close to crawling & being more independent.  he l-o-v-e-s LOVES his big brother & is moderately obsessed with him.  i am already so proud of my boys' relationship & how much parker loves his little brother back.  i hope it never changes {except for the part where parker constantly takes away whatever toy elliot has in his hands because suddenly it is extremely vital to parker's survival.  that can change.}

anywho, here is what some of our life has looked like lately through iPhotos.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

how two has been different than one.

can i be honest right now?  two kids are harder than one.  i know, shocking right?  i swear my kids tag team who is gonna wake up around six & who gets to sleep in past eight.  never fails... you'd think by chance they would maybe both sleep in past eight, but no.  there's always one up bright & early.  my attention is always divided throughout the day & sometimes i have to weigh which crying child needs me worse at that exact moment.  when i'm playing with elliot i'm sure to include parker & if i don't?  he's hanging off my back or off somewhere else, feeling left out.  if i'm playing one on one with parker then i feel bad for not engaging elliot.  two kids equals twice the "mom guilt" too.

i feel like at six-ish months with parker i had it all together.  i feel like i knew who he was & we had established our roles as baby & mom.  his personality was defined & we were checking milestones off left & right.

with elliot it's been different.  the weirdest part for me has been getting to know his own little individual personality.  he is a different baby than parker was & i feel like getting to know him has taken me longer this time around.  with parker it was all me & him, all the time.  elliot has had to go with the flow from day one, spending much of his time on my hip as we chase around parker or run our daily errands.  i feel like at almost seven months, i don't know him like i knew parker at that age.

now don't get me wrong, i have most certainly "bonded" with my baby.  this isn't a post about stress, post-partum depression or anxiety.  it's just that it has recently hit me that raising baby number two is "different" & i'm trying to put my finger on it.  and i think a big part of it is just that this time around i'm sharing my baby with another baby, rather than getting him all to myself.

there are definitely moments where i do "see" elliot for who he is.  and more often than not they are moments while nursing or getting him dressed or playing with him alone while parker naps or is off somewhere with sam.  they are the times where i get to just sit with him, uninterrupted & love on him with my whole self.  they are the times where he looks up at me like i am everything to him & he coos & smiles & giggles & makes my heart absolutely melt.  i am so grateful for those moments.

now that he is getting older & is sitting up & interacting much more, i am seeing him & parker's relationship grow like crazy.  parker will most likely be his biggest source of interaction & entertainment rather than me whereas with parker, again, it was all me & him, all the time.  i love watching my boys play together.  i love watching them become friends {actually, the other day out of nowhere parker exclaimed "elliot & i are best friends!" yeah... heart melting material} and i hope to create an environment in my home where both boys feel equally loved & included & grow up knowing there is a place for both of them in my heart.

something that i think will help this is sam & i have vowed to have regular one on one date nights with our boys.  i have absolutely noticed how much parker perks up & gets so SO excited when he gets to go out somewhere with mom or dad by himself.  he talks about a million more words a minute than normal {which is a LOT} and is absolutely the sweetest, happiest little boy in the whole world.  he thinks he is king of the world when he is out on a mommy or daddy date night.

and these nights already mean a lot to elliot too because it is the only time he gets to be the one & only. and i never want him to feel like he's living under parker's shadow.

my hat definitely goes off to moms of more than two kids.  i really, really don't know how you do it.  it obviously works somehow though, just like two is becoming our new normal.  before elliot i just couldn't imagine loving another little boy the way i did parker & it has most definitely happened.  your heart finds a way & before you know it you can't even remember what your life was like with just one.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

last few weeks in iPhotos

yikes! it's been awhile since i've done an iphoto dump... how does this sneak up on me so quickly?

per the uge, the last few weeks have been pretty busy & awesome around here. lots of playtime with our homies, hanging out around the house in jammies, lots of stroller strides & two days of stroller strides instructor training!

i'm so excited to have gone through the instructor training & i can't wait to start teaching!  if you've followed my blog for much time you have to have seen what a big part of our lives stroller strides is & how much i love it.  it's an amazing workout, a chance for me to see my friends 3-4x a week & a playdate for my kiddos.  i can't say it enough... every mom should do stroller strides.

the bad part about my two day training?  mr. stubborn elliot who refused to take a bottle while i was gone!  my amazing sister in law jodi (seriously, i can't thank you enough jodi!) came up both days to watch the boys while i was in seattle for 10+ hours each day.  elliot's not much for baby food yet, he doesn't like a sippy cup & apparently a bottle is out of the question.  so instead?  he starved himself for 15 hours the first day & 19 hours the second!  crazy monster.  needless to say, we survived.  and as proven by some of these chunky baby pictures, he doesn't look like he suffered much.  but we won't be doing that again any time soon.

anywho, here's what all that stuff looked like in iPhotos.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

swingin' & picture takin'

every now & then i talk about my photography biz.  it all started with my passion to take pictures of everything in my life.  when i got good at that, it became about taking pictures for other people.  when that got busy, the pictures of my own life started to slide.  and now?  i miss that.  i miss the pictures of my everyday life & taking my camera outside my home & capturing what we do.

so today i put an end to it!  it was a gorgeous day, we took the boys out & i brought along the ol' camera.  after some errands we wound up at a park where elliot got to experience a swingset for the first time & some of my favorite pictures ever came as a result {well, they might be on the same level as this one... parker's first time on a swing.  i love my boys}.

oh this makes me so happy.  happy pictures make me so happy!  my camera will be taking many many more trips with us out as a family in the near future.  i need the practice with my camera, i need the artistic outlet & i need more pictures like these of my growing babies.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

elliot - six months!

it's time to start staring one year straight in the face because we have now watched the six month mark come & go.  this is a big one folks.  we've made it through the first half of our year together & the milestones just start whizzing past now... i love it!  i'm not crying any tears over this hump, i love what comes with six months & what continues to come as each month goes by... more & more personality & independence.  it's so fun!

here's my littlest man all growed up to six months.
{compare previous p-ray & elliot pics here}.

with each day that goes by, it almost never fails that either sam or i will comment on how much personality has started to emerge from this little guy.  he shrieks out just to hear his own little voice & his face lights up with the biggest smile when a familiar face walks into the room.  he is obsessed with parker & giggles when he sees him.  parker loves him too, they wrestle to no end & elliot can take it.  although i swear if i had a penny for every time i had to say, "parker... be soft.  soft, parker.  parker, SOFT!"  i guess this is what comes with the two-boy territory. 

elliot cut his first two teeth in the last month & looks so cute with them just pokin up out of his bottom gums.  he teethed like a champ & we didn't even know they were coming until they were staring us back in the face.  that's the best kind of teething!  he still just wants to be held all. the. time. but i'm focusing on giving him more floor-play so he can fine tune those motor skills.  he rolls from back to belly like a champ but hasn't really mastered belly to back.  he does the baby-push up and holds his head way up in the air but isn't quite determined yet to go anywhere.

he goes to bed around 7:30 most nights, eats once or twice & then wakes up around 7:30 or 8.  we're getting pretty good sleep around here.  we put him down on his back but he rolls straight to his tummy & sleeps the whole night on the belly.  he starts the night off in his crib in parker's room & they do an awesome job falling asleep from awake in the same room.  we can often hear them giggling as they fall asleep & the other night i tried putting elliot down before parker was ready & he cried & cried until parker came in to go to bed.  then he was fine.  coincidence?  brotherly love?  i prefer to think the latter.  when he wakes up in the middle of the night he gets moved to a bassinet in our office so that the boys sleep in longer in the morning.  when he stops waking up at night is when we'll stop moving him i guess.

he is still exclusively breast fed & we've tried feeding him solids a couple times but he's just not interested... it just dribbles back out of his mouth. he refuses a bottle and even went 10 hours without eating during the day when i was at a workshop an hour away.  he just likes his food straight from the source, i guess!

we had his six month check up today {couple weeks late} and he weighs 20 pounds 9 ounces (90th %-tile) and is 28 inches long (85th %-tile)... he's our big boy!  he's sitting up like a champ & of all his baby-things prefers the walker where he can hop around & glide through the house.  he naps twice a day on a good day & is still working on self-soothing... aka: hates being put down alone.  what can i say?  he's a people person.

he gets so frustrated when he doesn't get what he wants or if he drops a toy he was playing with his little shrieks are super dramatic.  his little head of hair absolutely melts me & i could squeeze those baby rolls all day long.  i'm obsessed.  what is better than a squishy baby i ask you??  nothing, that's what.

and?  he is so dang cute.

love this boy.
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