Friday Five

1. Jimmie sat on his own for the first time yesterday; it was pretty exciting. He didn’t do it for too long, but I definitely consider it the first day he sat on his own; it’s going on his baby calendar! He probably won’t be doing much sitting today because he is getting his four month shots. He did so well last time, so I am a lot less nervous this time (I will still probably cry.)

2. I just realized yesterday that fall OFFICIALLY begins on Monday. What? I know I have been talking about it, but I didn’t actually think it was going to happen. Lucky us, (not so lucky) we are going to have a little Indian summer this weekend.

3. I have a confession. I am obsessed with baby socks (okay, and adult socks too.) I found these (on sale!) at Old Navy and had to buy them for Little Jimmie. He needed new socks (and he obviously needed Halloween socks) because along with the rest of this boy, his feet keep growing. Plus, his socks seem to go missing more than any of our socks. I also bought this Halloween onsie. I held back and didn’t buy this one, but I am still thinking about it!

4. We rented a house for our Arizona trip in November. I figured, if this is going to be a vacation, I really don’t want to stare at Little Jimmie in a hotel room while he sleeps and have to tiptoe around ( I DO love looking at him while he sleeps, but that is not the point…) Our house has three bedrooms and is in the mountains. I may actually be able to relax while we are there. (After we fly with an almost 6 month old…)

5. Another new obsession of mine is going to consignment sales for baby clothes. Last weekend, we went to one and bought a ton of stuff for $5o. Our haul included: two winter coats, a Halloween PJ outfit, a few sweaters, some pants, random onsies/shirts, a Christmas fleece winter one piece, an Oshkosh one piece, snow hats/mittens, a Skip Hop toy, and a Nike track suit. I am pretty much going to go to every consignment sale I can from here on out, they’re so worth it!

jimmie pillow 2

sitting
He is obviously thrilled with himself

Enjoy your last weekend of summer! (I can’t believe Jimmie’s first summer is coming to an end…)

We watch the season pull up its own stakes
And catch the last weekend of the last week
Before the gold and the glimmer have been replaced,
Another sun soaked season fades away – Dashboard Confessional “Stolen”

Fourth Month Baby Must-haves

I love seeing what Jimmie enjoys playing with and what we find handy for him, month by month. Here is what we loved last month.

4 month

1. Skip Hop Treetop Friends Owl Activity Toy - I love everything Skip Hop. I am slowly collecting all of the engaging toys they make. (Have you seen these? They’re new and I need them ALL!) Jimmie loves this hide and seek owl. He gives him hugs, looks in the mirror on one of the wings, and chews on the two teethers. It really is a fun toy and even makes noises like a rattle!

2. Summer Infant 3-Stage Superseat - We don’t have a Bumbo, but we do have this awesome sit and play seat. I have been trying to stick Jimmie in this thing since he was 2 months old, and he would look miserable. Right before Jimmie turned four months, I stuck him back in and he finally enjoyed it! He loves to sit there and whack all of the toys; I even put a few more on the tray for him to play with.

3. Rhino Toys Oball Rattle – This is such a great toy because Jimmie can stick his little fingers in the ball holes. He likes bringing it up to his mouth and shaking it.

4. Breathable Mesh Crib Liner – I was 100% against getting a crib bumper because of the risks of suffocation; they are also illegal in Maryland. But when Jimmie went into the crib, after already sleeping through the majority of the night, he started to wake himself up again. The reason being, his legs kept getting stuck in the crib. I decided that the safest way to prevent this from happening was to get a mesh (breathable) crib liner. It actually works great and I was only worried for the first few days. His little legs do not get stuck anymore and he can sleep peacefully through the night.

5. Skip Hop Bento Diaper Tote Bag, Olive – I kind of hated this bag when I first got it. It was too big and it was a pain to lug around. I realized I didn’t like it as much because when I first had Jimmie, we were going out for short periods of time, therefore we didn’t need a ton of stuff. Now, when we go out for more than a few hours, this diaper bag comes in handy. I love the insulated side pockets for bottles and all of the pockets inside for other items. I use the bottom pocket for a changing pad, diapers, and wipes, but eventually it’ll be used for baby food; the bag comes with baby food containers for this pocket. There are even a few pockets for my stuff, cause who really carries a diaper bag and a purse?

6. Bright Starts Rattle & Shaker Barbell - This rattle makes Jimmie giggle. He loves to grab it and shake it. It’s easy for him to reach for when he is on his tummy and then pull it back so that he can try to stick it in his mouth. I personally love the colors!

Recipes: Fake it and Make it Starbucks Pumpkin Bread

Since the weather is cooling down, it’s time to jump headfirst into pumpkin-everything season.  The other day I decided to make some pumpkin bread, it happens to be one of my favorite treats to eat this time of year. After searching through many recipes, I found a copycat Starbucks pumpkin bread recipe. Did you really think I’d make any other kind of pumpkin bread?

I doubled the original recipe and tweaked it a bit. With all of my substitutions and added ingredients, I ended up with: a loaf of pumpkin bread (in a bread pan), 24 mini pumpkin muffins, and 12 large muffins. You may make more or less depending on the sizes of your pans.

P.S The taste is AMAZING and the breads are so moist that they melt in your mouth!

Starbucks Copycat Pumpkin Bread

Makes: 1 pumpkin loaf, 24 mini muffins, 12 large muffins (depending on pan size, outcomes may vary)

pumpkin bread

Ingredients:

3 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger

1 teaspoon allspice

1 teaspoon salt

8 eggs

2 cups sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 30 oz can pumpkin puree

3/4 cup vegetable oil

3/4 cup coconut oil (melted)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Spray all pans with cooking spray.

3. Mix flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and salt in a bowl.

4. In a separate bowl, mix eggs, brown sugar, white sugar, and vanilla. Blend with a mixer for 1 minute on medium speed.

4. Add pumpkin, vegetable oil, and coconut oil to the eggs mixture, blend well with mixer.

5. Add the dry ingredients from the other bowl to the wet mixture and mix until everything in blended together.

6. Bake loaf for 60 minutes, mini muffins for 12-15 minutes, and large muffins for 22-25 minutes (or until toothpicks come out clean.)

Original recipe from Like Mother Like Daughters

Friday Five

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1. We had a special appointment for Jimmie’s flat head on Tuesday, in Baltimore, and the doctor said that he is fine and doesn’t need a helmet, thank goodness. He said it is a little flat, but it should fix itself. We didn’t even have to schedule a follow up.

2. Two vacations were decided on this week. Jimmie and I will be visiting Jim in Arizona, with his parents, in November. Jim and I also booked a Disney vacation for March; I really can’t resist the Military discount Disney offers. Jimmie is staying with my parents, shh don’t tell him where we’re going.

3. I cannot believe it has been 13 years since our lives, and our country, changed forever. I remember sitting in Algebra II, during my sophomore year of high school, with my friend who was an exchange student from Armenia. I remember saying to her, “What is the World Trade Center?” and she said, “I don’t know, I’m from Armenia!” I  also remember one of our history teachers running through the school telling all the teachers to turn on their TVs. We will never forget.

4. The fall is unofficially, officially, here; it is CHILLY this morning. I had my first hot Pumpkin Spice Latte, yesterday, and I also bought some pumpkin bread. Bring on pumpkin EVERYTHING. Last year we were in Korea for all of the Pumpkin awesomeness. I foresee gaining some weight back that I just lost.

5. Speaking of weight loss, I’m finally back under 130. (Only 1.6 pounds to go!) I was in total shock when I stepped on the scale yesterday. I then celebrated with three chocolate chip cookies. Yay me!

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Happy Four Months, Jimmie!

bathtimeWhere did my newborn go? Where did summer go? Jimmie is turning into to quite the little man. He is such a flirt and loves to smile and act bashful, especially when he is looking in the mirror. He hasn’t rolled yet, but he has figured out how to turn himself completely around in the crib, which we find hilarious.

Favorites: Blowing raspberries, sitting with assistance, and babbling/cooing

Weight: 16.5 pounds and 24.5 inches. Big boy! He even fits into some 6 month clothes!

Firsts this month: Laughed, blew raspberries, sat in his highchair, grabbing toys and holding them for long periods of time.

Nightly sleep schedule: Jimmie’s sleeps through the night on most nights from about 8:30 PM-7:30 AM. Sometimes he will still wake up around 5:30 or 6 to snack on about 4 oz and then go back to sleep until 8:30-9.

Favorite toy: Sassy My First rattles (his are red/black/white), Skip Hop Owl Activity Toy, Disney Baby Goofy Rattle/ Toy (from Disney World)

Hardest moment of the month: Dealing with Jimmie not wanting to eat as much and trying to figure out why (still working on this one). Teething! (No teeth yet, though.)

Best moment of the month: Hearing Jimmie laugh for the first time.

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Favorite Children’s Books 0-4 Months

Since I love to read, there were no question in my mind that I wouldn’t love reading to Jimmie. I started reading to him almost immediately after we brought him home from the hospital, and to be honest I think that’s why he makes so many different sounds already. Here are our favorite books so far!

books 0-4Baby Einstein Touch and Feel Baby Animals: This is our nap time book. I read that not only do babies like bedtime routines, but they also like nap time routines. We read this book before every nap and Jimmie usually smiles when I touch his hand to the touch and feel sections.

Wherever You Go My Love Will Find You by Nancy Tillman: I started reading this book to Jimmie before he was even born; the first time I read it I cried like a baby. This is one of the sweetest Children’s books I have ever read; the artwork is beautiful and so are the words.

Look Look by Peter Linenthal: As I mentioned before, Jimmie is obsessed with this book; he will stare at it for a long time while he is on his belly. The black and white pictures are perfect for babies since they cannot see in color until around four months.

Fuzzy Bee and Friends by Roger Priddy: Jimmie really enjoys grabbing this soft book. Sometimes I’ll read him the story and other times I will just put it down for him to play with while he is on his tummy. I really think he will start to love the bug book even more when he gets a little older and can hold on to items longer.

ABC An Amazing Alphabet Book by Dr. Seuss: Since Jimmie’s nursery is a Dr. Seuss theme, we read Dr. Seuss a lot. The ABC book is probably my favorite. It’s never too soon to start learning the alphabet; I even sing the alphabet song to him while I’m changing his diaper.

Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell: This book is too cute. I love little flap books and I can’t wait for Jimmie to be able to lift the flaps himself. We are big on zoos in our family, therefore Jimmie will be visiting the zoo a ton when he gets a little older.

Sophie la girafe: Colors:  I love all of the Sophie la girafe books (our French Giraffe friend) but this one is one of my favorites because it is about colors. This book is also a flap book, just like Dear Zoo.

What are your favorite Children’s books?

Friday Five

1. I cannot believe it is September. Where did the summer go? Even though summer is “over”  I still can’t start wearing my new fall clothes (or dressing Jimmie in his stellar new wardrobe). For some reason, mother nature decided to send us our first (and hopefully last) heat wave, this week. Hello 90 degree weather! Jimmie and I have been camping out inside, working on rolling (which has to happen ANY day now!)

2. I am so excited for Fall TV shows to return! I am most excited for Scandal, Grey’s Anatomy, Modern Family, and Nashville. And of course, my favorite morning show, Rachael Ray, returns September 15. Anything new I should check out?

3. Pumpkin Spice Latte is officially available at Starbucks. I have already had my specialty: Iced Coffee with one pump of pumpkin and light soy. YUM! Can’t wait to have a hot PSL when it gets cooler!

4. For some reason, my stats on my blog have been SUPER high this past week, as in I used to get 100-200 hits a day, and I started getting over 1,000 a day. If you’re a new reader, say hello and tell me how the heck you found my blog! Welcome!

5. Jimmie is acting crazy this week: falling asleep on his bottles and not eating as much as he usually does. I blame it ALL on teething. I hope his first one pops through soon, it looks like it could come in any day now. But really, I’m clueless in the teething department.

playing
Jimmie used to look miserable when I stuck him in here. Now he plays!
goofy
Jimmie is so in love with Goofy. He munches on his nose!

Have a fantastic weekend!

Rosie’s Favorite Quotes: Looking For Alaska

quotes

lookingPeople, I thought, wanted security. They couldn’t bear the idea of death being a big black nothing, couldn’t bear the thought of their loved ones not existing, and couldn’t imagine themselves not existing. I finally decided that people believed in an afterlife because they couldn’t bear not to. Pg. 100

That is the fear: I have lost something and cannot find it, and I need it. It is fear like if someone lost his glasses and went to the glasses store and they told him that the world had run out of glasses and he would jut have to do without. Pg. 144

He was shaken by the overwhelming revelation that the headlong race between his misfortunes and his dreams was at that moment reaching the finish line. The rest was darkness. “Damn it,” he sighed. “How will I ever get out of this labyrinth!” Pg. 155

“Because everybody who has ever lost their way in this life has felt the nagging insistence of that question. At some point we all look up and realize we are lost in a maze…” Pg.159

“‘Everything that comes together falls apart,'” the old man said. “Everything. The chair I’m sitting on. It was built, and so it will fall apart. I’m gonna fall apart, probably before this chair. And you’re gonna fall apart. The cells and organs and systems that make you you – they came together, grew together, and so must fall apart. The Buddha knew one thing science didn’t prove for millennia after his death. Entropy increases. Things fall apart.” Pg.196

Because memories fall apart, too. And then you’re left with nothing, left not even with a ghost but with its shadow. Pg. 196

“…I’d like to say one thing, Islam, Christianity, and Buddhism each have founder figures- Muhammad, Jesus, and Buddha, respectively. And in thinking about these founder figures, I believe we must finally conclude that each brought a message of radical hope. To seventh-century Arabia, Muhammad brought the promise that one could find fulfillment and everlasting life through allegiance to the one true God. The Buddha held out hope that suffering could be transcended. Jesus brought the message that the last shall be first, that even the tax collectors and lepers – the outcasts- had cause or hope. And so that is the question I leave you with in this final: What is your cause for hope?” Pg. 215-216

When adults say, ‘Teenagers think they are invincible’ with that sly, stupid smile on their faces, they don’t know how right they are. We need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We think we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die. Like all energy, we can only change shapes and sizes and manifestations. They forget that when they get old. They get scared of losing and failing. But that part of us greater than the sum of our parts cannot begin and cannot end, and so it cannot fail. Pg. 220-221

Breastfeeding Must-Haves

breastfeeding essential

Even though my breastfeeding relationship only lasted a month, read my story here, I don’t think I could have made it through it without these products:

Motherlove Nipple Cream: This stuff is great: It’s made from natural ingredients and smells delicious. I started using it in the hospital on my nipples and never really got any terrible sores from feeding Jimmie, granted I was using a shield, but it did make my sore nipples feel much better.

Lansinoh TheraPearl 3-in-1 Breast Therapy – These hot/cold packs fit perfectly in your bra. I used them as cold packs for my engorged boobs. They were a huge help when I decided to stop breastfeeding; I pretty much wore them non-stop until my milk went away. The hot/cold packs come with pouches so they are not too hot or cold against your skin. (The covers are washable!)

Lansinoh Disposable Nursing Pads – When I decided to breastfeed, I knew I would need pads for leakage. I was going to by reusable ones, eventually, but soon realized that for as long as I was leaking, I would use these; washing milk-soaked breast pads really wasn’t on top of my daily to-do list. I love these because you can stick them to the inside of your bra so that they don’t move around. (I sometimes needed to change mine two-three times a day.)

Medula Contact Nipple Shield - I needed this, at all times, to nurse Jimmie. I read reviews for other brands, but this one was rated the best, and it worked well for us. I would wet it before it put it on so that it would stick and stay on better. (Store yours in a Skip Hop pacifier pocket, I was constantly losing mine, and panicking!)

Women’s Nursing Comfort Sleep Bra (from Target)- This was my favorite nursing bra. I bought a few different kinds (okay a ton) and I found myself wearing (and washing) these the most. They come in all different colors and are really comfortable during the day and while sleeping. FYI: Do not buy nursing bras with under wire, they can cause infection! (Wish I knew this before I bought bras!)

Camelbak Water Bottle – I was drinking water non-stop before, during, and after breastfeeding. I love this water bottle because you don’t have to tip it over to drink from it. Sometimes if I was drinking from a cup, I would pour water all over myself; I’m not too great at multitasking.