Monday, August 29, 2011

On Beyond Thursday

We were truly blessed with some fun family activities this weekend.  I love being able to take the time to spend with hubby and the kids, and I am so thankful to God for the amazing family he has blessed me with.  This is just going to be your typical Weekend Adventure post (sorry if you are not interested) :).

Thursday morning story time at the library started back up.  I can not tell you how much we love this class. The teacher is so much fun, and Caleb and his little friends just have the best time.  He gets so excited walking into the library and always runs in saying "pres!!!" (for Presley).  Sweet James always joins us as well, and the kids just have so much fun.



Friday the kids and I chilled at home during the day. We did a lot of playing outside, and cleaning inside, and anticipated our fun filled night. That night we joined my mom group and their families at a local park for a free outdoor movie. They were showing Toy Story 3, and we brought blankets, snacks, and all sat and enjoyed the show. The kids had so much fun playing before, and they all did really well watching the movie. 

Our neighbors little girl shared her bike and helmet with Caleb.  I assure you we did not buy him a pink bike and Barbie helmet.





Saturday was a chill morning at home, and then that night we went to Nick's sisters soccer game. She stayed with us this weekend, and we had fun going to watch her play. Caleb had fun playing on the sidelines with his soccer ball, and showing everyone his boo boo that he got when he fell chasing his ball. You have to love the 2 year old boo boo stage (much better than the mine stage). After we arrived home we gave the kids their bath, and then watched in anticipation as this little girl showed off her almost crawling skills. She is still not there just yet. but she is oh so close.





Sunday we played hooky from church (the kids are still having a hard time with the nursery and sitting through the sermon).  We planned to go to a water park, but it was a little to chilly so we chose to go to a park instead. We had a picnic, let Caleb play, and then  us girls took a quick trip to Ikea for some frames. After Ikea, the babies and I went to watch Nick's indoor soccer game. Caleb was able to play with James while there as well. 

It was a great weekend! This is a little video of my cute little "me". I could just eat him up.

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Friday, August 26, 2011

The Battle of the Non-Bulge

I have to admit that while I was pregnant with Mckinlee I prayed for many many things about our life to come. I prayed for a baby who would sleep, that Caleb would transition easily, that the baby would be easy going, and that I would learn to manage 2 under 2.  I also prayed that Mckinlee would be a petite baby.  That may seem weird, but I am a tiny person with a big boy of a toddler.  My boy has always been big, and he used to break my back when he was an infant. I knew that if I had a large baby girl plus a toddler we would have issues. I mean there are times when they both need to be held at the exact same moment, and this mama is not a strong one.  So, I prayed for a petite little girl....my prayers were answered..maybe to much

Last week I took both kids to their well baby visits. Caleb was 27 lbs and 35 1/2 inches and was growing perfect on the charts.  Mckinlee who has always been tiny was 12 lbs 3 ounces and 25 1/2 inches.  That may not seem like a big deal, but she only gained 4 ounces in a month and a half.  She dropped from the 10% percentile in weight to the 5% percentile, and the doctor voiced concern for the first time.  He thinks that due to her being so mobile she is burning off all the calories from my milk very quickly. He said I may just not make fatty milk.  I was heartbroken to hear this, and I feared that I would have to stop nursing her. However, he put us on a "build the bulge" diet, and asked us to come in a month for weight check. 

Our diet consists of 1/2 fruit 1/2 veggie mixed with cereal and breast milk 4 times a day, and 2 ounces of pediasure every day or every other day. I also nurse her every 3 hours.  Hopefully this will help little miss pack on a few pounds. If not we will discuss "fatty formulas".  I am open to any option that will keep her healthy, but I love the free aspect of breastfeeding, and the bond that we share. I do not think I am ready to give that up yet.  So, my prayers have changed from asking for a petite baby to asking for a little bit larger baby. 

Just to take in how different my children were as babies I will leave you with some pictures of Caleb and Mckinlee at 6 months.  Caleb was just a "little" larger. 







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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Planking....

It is official.  My little bundle girl is growing up, and she is learning to spread her wings and fly (sappy I know).  This little girl has been amazing me lately with how much she is changing, and I feel as though she has not really gotten the blog time that she needs.  I often feel as though I am slacking on recording Mckinlee's milestones on here in comparison to Caleb's.  However, I am taking the time today to write all about miss sweet pea and her "mobile" adventures. Let's just say she is on the "plank" of crawling.



Mckinlee has always been more mobile than Caleb ever was at this age. In fact when she was in the womb she was ALL OVER THE PLACE. I used to always joke that "we would have our hands full with this one".  Since birth Mckinlee has been a mover, a talker, and has been very opinionated and picky. She likes what she wants when she wants it, and if you do not give it to her she will give you an ear full.  (She is not a woman is she :)).  Any who, I have always found it funny to compare her and Caleb.
Caleb:
did not coo until 3 months
did not roll over both ways until 6 months
did not crawl until 10 months
He was perfectly content sitting and playing with one toy independently for hours. 
He would let anyone and everyone hold him.
Very large

Mckinlee:
talking from the womb I swear
started rolling both ways around 3 1/2-4 months
already army crawling
will only sit and play with toys for a minute and you have to play with her.
She is very picky about who holds her
Very tiny

Anyways, they are so different, but I love that! I love not knowing what to expect. Unlike her big bro she is all about moving around. She loves to roll roll roll all across the room, under tables, under couches etc. She has been doing this with the greatest of ease for what feels like forever.  As of a few weeks ago she started getting up on all fours and rocking, and I knew that the days of her becoming mobile were just around the corner.  Well, today she started army crawling, and rocking/falling on her head to move around.  The days of crawling are seriously very close now.  I do not think I am ready for this, and I may break down and cry at the thought of it.  I am not ready for my little bitty baby (who is still the size of a 1 month old) to start crawling around. I am also not ready for the havoc that 2 mobile children will produce.  Oh geez Mckinlee lets just slow down a bit. 

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

All Good Plans....Day 2

Well, here we are two days into my "teach my child" project, and well.....it was already a little bit of a slack off day.  We did not have "morning circle time"...instead we both thought it would be more fun to build and play in a fort..."a BLUE fort" may I add. 

Though we did take a few minutes to talk about the color blue while playing peek a boo, get Caleb's leg, and where is mommy, we mostly just enjoyed each others company. My little man giggled at my silliness and my heart stopped from all of his cuteness. I swear I could eat that little stinker with a spoon. 

After the fort I built what I like to all a "push lace"...creative right? Caleb had some fun pushing the blue objects back and forth, and to my happy heart he kept saying "buuu" as he did so. 

We then bowled with a blue ball.  Caleb does not quite understand that he needs to roll the ball just yet. He thinks that kicking it and throwing it is much more effective. To his credit he does knock down all the pins by doing so.

We drew a few A's for "art".  It was not really what I had in mind, but it worked. 

We have not even though out about learning our square shape yet..at least the week is still young.

I did attempt to have his blanket play activity set up for when Mckinlee woke up from her nap. I gave him a blue container of blue bears and a blue container of blue blocks. I thought he would take the time to pour, count, line up etc. However, he decided he wanted to get the green container out, cheers with the containers, pretend to drink and then throw the bears across the room....yea...needless to say Mickey Mouse made an appearance while I nursed.

After that fail we had some outdoor play time which was great until he got a small splinter, and then he and Mckinlee both started screaming.  As predicted...they always scream while I am fixing lunch. We doctored Caleb's foot, washed hands, and I prepared lunch with a baby on my hip. I fed both of them, nursed Mckinlee, allowed Caleb to walk Bella on a leash (instant toddler entertainment), and then they were down for naps. 


So....he may not have learned a whole lot today, but my heart sure did melt watching him run around and be his crazy, fun, 2 year old self.  I am so thankful for my little babies and for the chance to "try" to teach them about the wonders of this world. 





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Monday, August 22, 2011

Learning Schedule/Morning 1

I am attempting to stick to a "learning schedule" with Caleb.  Some days when we have outings times will change, but for the normal stay at home days this is what I am going to stick with...maybe....we will see.  (Life is unpredictable with 2 young babies)

Our Daily Possible Schedule
6:30-Nurse Mckinlee and cuddle with Caleb in bed
7- Come into living room feed breakfast/watch a cartoon
7:30- I eat breakfast
8-9- Hang out with daddy before he leaves for work
9- quick nurse for Mckinlee
9:15- Mckinlee down for nap
9:15- Morning Circle Time with Caleb. 
  • Sing a song with a dance
  • Read a story (preferably referring to the weeks theme)
  • Practice recognizing his name written on a flash card.
9:40- Morning Art
10- Blanket Activity
  • Bring out one new activity. Demonstrate how to do it, and allow Caleb free play to manipulate it any way he chooses.
10:30- Mckinlee wakes. Give Caleb one other blanket activity while I nurse her.  (Sometimes Mickey Mouse becomes the activity during this time).  You do what you have to do when you have a baby on your boob and a toddler screaming in your ear.  Mickey Mouse has magical powers. 

11- Outdoor play
  • Outdoor chalk
  • Slides
  • Ball in the yard
  • Water table
  • Pool
  • Bikes
12- Inside/wash hands/prepare lunch

12:30- serve lunch to 2 now screaming children

1- nurse Mckinlee and put her down for nap

1:30 put Caleb down for nap

MAMA FREE TIME
3:30/4- Kids awake. Nurse Mckinlee. Caleb watches a show while waking up

4-5- Outside Play

5-6- Cook Dinner

6:30- Eat Dinner

7:30- Baths

8-Nurse Mckinlee and put her down for bed

9-Caleb Bed

(Add in a few 100 diaper changes and you have a typical day in our family).

Today's Learning so far

Morning Art:
Today I drew a large bubble A on a piece of paper. I then gave Caleb leftover stickers from his party, and showed him how to place them on the A.  He had so much fun and really worked those fine motor skills. He needed help getting the stickers started, but he did the rest. (Note: My child is in a "I'm to cool to wear clothes while at home" stage...I pick my battles"). 


Blanket Play:
  • Placing pegs in tiny holes
  • Stringing Blue beads
  • Building a Blue tower

 Mckinlee likes learning about the color blue as well.


Outdoor Play:
  • Drawing A's and squares with chalk
  • Sliding down the Blue slide
I am attempting.  We may not have the perfect "playroom", or the perfect learning materials, but I am trying. 

Stay tuned for more about our week of learning...kind of like a day in the life post education style :). 
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My Go At "Teaching"

As I have stated before on this blog I have a background in Early Childhood Education.  I studied it in college, and have worked as a preschool teacher in the past.  I have always had big dreams of "teaching" my own children one day. I used to always sit in class, doodling my future children's names, and daydreaming about their awesome future "school like playroom".  I used to think that I would have an art section, dramatic play, blocks, library etc, and that each week would be filled with a new theme sure to help my child grow up to be a genius.  Yea....daydreams.

The reality is that I do not have a house large enough yet to set up my dream playroom/classroom, my mornings do not begin with circle time complete with a song, movement and story, and some days Mickey Mouse is a constant babysitter. You know that is the reality of having two young children. The truth is you do what you can to survive. However, I have been really convicted about the fact that Caleb is already 2 and that it is high time he starts learning new things, and I being his mother am the one who needs to teach him.  I mean after all he is well within the birth-3 age gap where they learn so much vital information, and even though he amazes me each day with the new things he learns, I am wanting to teach him more.

I am a firm believer in learning through free play and exploration.  Children should be allowed to manipulate, and explore activities in any way they choose. However, I also believe that they are little sponges who want to learn more, want to know proper ways to perform activities, and who love to learn new things.  So, all this to say...I am attempting my "day dream", and I am teaching weekly themes/concepts.

This week we are not really doing a theme but we are focusing on...
The Letter A
The Color Blue
The Square Shape

Caleb loves letters, and for the most part he knows the letters A, and O.  However, I really want to know that he knows the letter A by the end of the week. 
Colors....we work on all the time. Sometimes he gets lucky and points to the color blue if you ask...but he is not so great with them all the time. He can sort colors correctly, but as far as knowing them...not so much. 
Shapes: The only shape we know so far is a circle...in which my child refers to as an O.  Hey I give him the benefit of the doubt..I mean how can it be an O and a Circle. That is enough to blow a 2 year olds mind. 

I think this week I will post about our activities, and our progress in learning our 3 concepts. 

I am going to break activities down into a few different posts, so I hope you enjoy my attempt at "teaching" my child the Early Childhood Education Day Dreamer kind of way. 
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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Caleb Day Part 2

I am a little behind in blogging.  This week has been a whirlwind with breaking the binky, and I have not had much time to sit and type up a post. I did want to back track a little and do a couple posts on our celebrations for Caleb's actual birthday.

Caleb's birthday fell on a Thursday this year.  We went to lunch with dada, grandpa and Tony, and then that night we went to Nick's parents for a birthday grill out and cake.  Caleb loves going over there because he is obsessed in riding around in the golf cart. He could spend hours with someone driving him in it.  Anyway, he loved blowing out his candles that night, and once again made us sing to him 2 times.


Friday Nick took off work and we took Caleb and Mckinlee to the Children's Museum. We had not been since Caleb was 17 months, and he loved it so much more this time around. He was all over the place, and he loved everything about it.  We lucked out as well because it was "free Friday". After 4 pm we could enter all parts of the Museum for free. Nick and I were able to enjoy all the museum had to offer after the kiddos fell asleep, and it was such a great day.









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