Showing posts from January, 2016

A New Year A New Routine

A few weeks ago, I wrote out this new schedule.  It takes into account the morning nap put back into Ella's day. I shifted some things around, but the items throughout the day are basically the same. The morning nap has helped some, but I've been having to play around with her afternoon nap. Today, I'm trying 2pm instead of 2:30, and I'll take it from there. This new routine gives us lots to do, but it's the perfect amount of "things" for these little people.  It also allows me moments throughout the day to get chores done (kitchen cleaned up while Jack has his 20-30 minutes of TV time and Ella naps, laundry started and switched over while they both nap in the afternoon, lunch started while Ella naps and Jack has learning time, etc.)   I have lots of one on one time with each of them, too, which is a bonus. Even if you're not hope every day with your kiddo, I highly recommend a routine on your off days. It has been such a blessing to let our routine work…

Thankful Thursday 1/28

Today, I'm thankful that even in the midst of trials, there are so many reminders of God's goodness if only I'm willing to look around me. 
I've been blinded lately, and I have really just sort of taken a step back from my faith.  *Hope has definitely, and unfortunately, been on the back burner.*  It's amazing how fatigue and disappointment are such a feeding ground for the enemies of God. I have felt spiritually attacked the last month, and instead of clinging to God, I turned away and replaced faith with fear and His assurances with my anger. I placed blame instead of seeking help and direction.  But, just like a wayward child finding her way back to her home, I found my way back to Him.  Grace.  So thankful for that word and all it means. 
I'm also thankful for these two cuties who like each other (and books) a whole lot. 

A Little Bit of Success

I'm still working on getting Ella used to sitting on the potty each morning. She's doing well at sitting patiently and "trying."  
Day 4 Day 5 During breakfast this morning, she made her "concentrating face." As I rushed her to the toilet, I told her that she needed to have her bowel movement in the potty. She said, "yeah." I put her on and a few minutes later I heard her tee-tee. We all clapped for her, and she got excited and clapped for herself. I went to lift her off and realized she had done something else, too! It was just a little bit, but we cheered her on. I showed her what she had done and told her she did well. She was happy, but she was even happier to get back to her breakfast :)

Potty Training - Round 2

So I started introducing the concept of sitting on the potty to Ella three days ago. Each morning after breakfast, I place her on the potty and explain what needs to happen. I read "potty" books to her while she sits. She has not accomplished anything on there other than sitting patiently without needing to hold onto me, which in itself is great.  Day 2 Day 3 This afternoon after lunch, I had her sit on it again for quite a while. Jack needed to go, so he did his business on the little potty we have for emergencies. I applauded him in front of her for telling me he needed to go and for doing it in the potty. She clapped for him.  I gave up and took her off. She walked to the living room and promptly peed all over the rug and the lower level of the coffee table before I could get in there with a diaper. I don't know how she managed to pee on the coffee table.

Two Naps A Day Keeps The Rocking Away

I hate to even type this up because of the likely jinxing it will bring, but since reinstitutiing the morning nap three days ago, Ella's nights have been so much better. The last two nights I haven't heard her once. Which means, I, too, have gotten two full nights of rest. Hallelujah! I'm like a new woman. It's been so nice to be this happy and far less irritable. 
That's pretty much it. A 45-minute nap in the mornings combined with a good 1 1/2 to 2-hour nap in the afternoons seems to have helped her nights improve drastically. We're still dealing with a little bit of rocking before she falls asleep, but we're staying on top of it. We remind her throughout the day that beds are for resting and not for rocking, and right before we put her in bed, we remind her again. We've also been snuggling with her more throughout the day, and I dance and sway with her often. She's been so very sweet (and far more obedient and helpful and loving) these last few da…

An Update on The Rocker

I got several helpful comments on yesterday's post, both on here and on the phone. I appreciate the feedback! I wanted to share with you some things we've tried today, most of which are based on the 18-month sleep regression article I read at 3:30 this morning.
1. I added back in the morning nap.  It took her half and hour to settle, but once she did, she slept for 45 minutes and woke happy and stayed that way the rest of the morning. 
2. We were consistent. Each time we heard her sit up and start to rock, we went in and told her to lie back down and that it was time to rest. Her daddy swatted her leg the third time (she had on thick pajamas, and she didn't cry, but it was a physical reminder to her that she was not being obedient), and we didn't hear from her again. 
3. I followed the same routine for her afternoon nap, and I had to tell her three times to lie down.  She woke an hour and a half in when police cars, a fire truck, and am ambulance pulled up lights blazing …

A Taboo Subject?

This girl rocks. 
Figuratively, of course, because she's pretty wonderful, and we love her lots.  But, most certainly literally.  You see, starting around her first birthday, she started rocking in her bed during naps and before bedtime.  She didn't do it a whole lot, but it was enough that we noticed it, as her rocking would get so rough (the sides of those things are springy!) that she'd practically bounce off the wall if the playpen was too close. She doesn't suck her thumb or take a pacifier, so this, for some reason, became her soothing mechanism of choice. 
When we moved her to a crib, the rocking became even more persistent. And far noisier.  I started to find her crib halfway across the room most mornings. I began putting grippy strips under the legs of the bed and little bumper pads on the backs of the side rails that touched the wall. None of that would have been an issue, except she's keeping Jack (and me) awake, which is not great. 
The grippy things only la…

An Interview with The Boy - 2 1/2

I've seen lots of posts on Pinterest with questions people (probably mostly moms) ask their kiddos each year.  I would have started when Jack turned two, but since he wasn't terribly verbal, I just would have ended up with a lot of nods and hand gestures and sign language. He's very smart, and he understands so much, but he's still not as verbal as most children his age. That being said, I still wanted to attempt this because it's such a great idea and such a wonderful way of keeping track of "the little things."  I looked through and jotted down questions from many, many sources on Pinterest, and I decided that these 15 would do. I set up my phone to record his responses, and I had him sit at the table with me to conduct our interview. This was super unsuccessful because playing with his Backyardigan friends and beans was wayyyyy too much fun and far too distracting (and messy) to answer any of my silly questions.  So, I waited until right before his nap …

All the Single Ladies (and Men)

I've been reading Kelly's blog for a really long time now, and I thought I would share her latest post. I think it's amazing that so many couples have found each other through a blog! If you're a single gal or guy and are interested in trying something new, click on over and see what she has planned in few weeks. It couldn't hurt! If you know anyone who might be interested, encourage them to check it out! Especially those great single guys!! ;)
Here's the link. And if you do decide to join in, let me know! I'd be so happy to share what you write and/or pray for good things to come, OR if you feel weird talking yourself up, I would be thrilled to write about you and post it on her page!

The Remains of a Tree

A few weeks ago we had a very large (and very expensive--ugh!) tree taken down. It was close to power lines, and the top didn't look healthy, so we decided it needed to go. Here's Jack watching them take it down while sitting with our sweet neighbor :) Anywho, now we have massive tree pieces/logs/whateveryoucallthem lying in our front yard. We tried to sell them to people who would chop them up for fire wood to try to recoup some of that money, but there are no takers other than the ones who want it all for free.  So. 
While staring out my window, I started to dream up ideas for what we could do with them in our own backyard. I clicked on over to Pinterest and found some cute ways to use them in the backyard. I typed in "large tree stump logs yard" in the search field if you want to check out the TONS of creative things people have done. 
I really liked these.  And these.  Even this one for the leftover stump in the front yard.  Now, all I have to do is convince The Husband…

Keeping Busy(er)

So, it's been two full days now since I stepped away from and shut down my Facebook page. What I quickly realized was that I tried to compensate by reading articles online, mostly celebrity news. Nothing of interest and certainly nothing of value, so I'm going to have to quit that, as well. To help myself, I bought a book while doing a little window shopping at Target. 

I NEVER buy books for myself (A--because we don't have the space on our tiny bookshelf and B--because it seems absurd to spend $20 on a book I could check out at the library.), but I made an exception. It looked and sounded so interesting, and I justified the expense because it's Sunday and our library wasn't open. So. 

I'm about 50 pages in so far, and it's pretty good. I'm looking forward to reading it while I have down time (but not at night before bed because I will finish it WAY too quickly, and I need this baby to last!)
While looking around in the book section (my favorite part of th…


It's the first day of the new year, and while I normally don't make resolutions (because like the other 99.9% of the resolution-makers out there, I don't follow through), I'm making an exception this year.

My resolution this year is this:   *I am going to give up social media for at least six months.*
I've done it before, so I know it's not an impossible task. I also know how it changes things for the better, at least for me. I can see the negative impact it has in my life, and I'm ready for a change. 
I read this article, and I realize that, given the outlet (a listening ear or reading eyes, as it were), I can be a really negative person, and I can honestly say, I didn't used to be. And I miss that gal. 
Unfortunately, for me, social media (Facebook) is a huge outlet for negativity. I read other people's grumbles and complaints, I view article after article listing the wrong things in this world, and my head and heart start to justify my grumblings. The…