Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Quiet on the home front

If there's such a thing as ying & yang (or ebb and flow, if you will), then it seems like this summer is having its perfect share of it.  In June I couldn't stop talking -- blogging was all my rage.  But in July, even with the busyness of the first half of the month, I haven't had quite as much to say, and I also feel like I have little to show for it.
My camera lens is acting funky (perhaps because Mia was playing with a bit too much) and so there are no new pictures to upload unless you take what's on my iPhone.

Right before our trip to Captiva, I mentioned I was experiencing stomachaches on a daily basis.  Since we've returned from the trip, those have unfortunately been a mainstay. :-\  It has been quite troubling for me to figure out the culprit, especially when I'm not in a mood to limit many of my cravings (baby needs food too)!  Over the last couple of days, I find the less I think about it, the better off I am, and so my stomachaches have decreased in intensity and frequency, thank goodness.  To the best of my knowledge, I've been avoiding gluten as well and that seems to help.  It's been hard to avoid dairy, but I've decreased my total intake of it for the time being.  I will be trying some peppermint oil to see if it will help with my nausea and abdominal pains, and I'll be bringing it up with my "health team" over the next few days as well.

Speaking of "health team," I start the first of my regular "growth scan" ultrasounds this afternoon.  The plan is to have an ultrasound once a month now for the remainder of this pregnancy.  When they told me of this plan at my 8 week appointment, the starting point of 24 weeks sounded like a long ways away, but tomorrow I'll technically be 24 weeks and here I am today anticipating my first "growth scan."  It's always fun to see the little guy and I know he's moving as he's been quite active in the womb, sometimes jumping up and down, or pushing me in funny places that aren't as comfortable, but it's generally a reassurance that all's well.

As far as the other little one goes (yes, I mean Mia), I have to confess I've done a horrible job of keeping up with her baby book. I was quite good at it for the first year, but I don't know if I've taken it out since last fall to update it.  For shame!  It's a good thing we do have this blog, otherwise I might not recall with perfect detail when various things took place.
Anyway, she is a mighty force.  She often has loads to say and it's amazing how much her comprehension and ability to communicate with us has grown over the last few months.  Talking with her about things and seeing the understanding take place has really helped us explain things and deal with issues of discipline or correction.

Peter Rabbit Organic Fruit Pouches, from Amazon.com
She might also be going through a growth spurt.  That, or her decreased interest in coconut milk means she's trying to make up for calories.  She wants to eat all the time.  "Snaaaaack, mommy, snack!"  She loves these kinds of snacks:
and is quite a happy camper if she can have one.  There are varieties with vegetables mixed in, so I like having the option of giving her both when I can.
She requests turkey at the oddest of times, but hey, at least it's a straight up decent protein, so I don't mind at all.  And she's also learning the value of eating "one more bite" so that she can get whatever it is she really wants (cookie, peez??).
She's even taken an interest in cheese and it seems she might be growing out of her so-called dairy intolerance that she struggled with as an infant.  If so, that is a blessing and a relief.  Ice cream is just too stinkin' delicious to avoid all the time, although much can be said of what can be done with the right can of coconut milk!

And while drafting this post I decided I'd upload a few pictures anyway.  So sit back you all and enjoy!
Walking to the park - a workout for the both of us!

Playing with Peyton & Lily

...and they all look like they could be related (two of them are!)

relaxing with daddy

under a "beat-da" (blanket)

helping Mommy shop at Old Navy

Learning electric guitar at a young age

Hands-down Mia's favorite part of Busch Gardens

"Come, Mommy, come!"

Playing with another little kid, Miss Lydia looks on
Monkey see, Monkey do

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

We Made It. And No One Was Hurt.

Away we went and it was awesome. Refreshing.  Sunny.  And I totally want to do this again.

I was seriously super stressed before our trip.  I had so much on my mind, I got stomachaches for 3 days straight.  And even coming back home gave me a stomachache  (should've stayed in Captiva, methinks).  Good stress is still stress.  

However, my parents got into town Wednesday, we left Thursday and Mia said goodbye to us and hardly looked back.  She took a 3 hour nap Friday, played hard and partied hard with Mommo & Papa Jack, Uncle Luke & Aunt Allison, and was happy to see us when we returned.  
Mia having a coffee date with Papa Jack
scarfing down Coldstone after a busy, fun day

At the park with Papa Jack
(Obviously my mom was the one taking these pictures otherwise there might be one of her with Mia too.)

For the first time in a long time, Greg & I got to stay out as late as we wanted, eat when we wanted, and hang out at the beach/pool as long as we wanted.  It was really nice to disconnect!  I'm thinking we should make this a regular habit :P

We hardly took any pictures while we were away, but here's the little I did take:

Driving over the bridge to Sanibel & Captiva Islands

Oceanside: View from our room

The night of our anniversary, hanging out by the ocean
Right before we left; the tint of the picture matches the heat index that day, i.e., HAWT
The resort was beautiful, the island was beautiful and we had a great time detaching from the Real World for a few days.  So much so that I've almost had a hard time reintegrating myself even though we were only gone 2 days.

Now that our trip is over, our anniversary has passed, and both sides of the family have visited for the summer, I am a bit hesitant to move on to the next items on our list (e.g., potty-training? if we have the nerve; upgrading to a big girl bed; switching around the rooms, etc.)  They require just as much mental focus as they do physical energy.  They will be big accomplishments once done but there's a part of me not excitedly looking forward to these next steps.  However, whenever the waves of inspiration hit me (the right bedroom design; furniture arrives; or Mia actually tinkles on the potty), perhaps the nesting instinct will hit and we'll all hit the ground running.  One can hope.  
I'm almost 23 weeks along and aside from the recent stomachaches (a new homeopathy post will be coming up regarding that!), I am feeling pretty well.  They don't lie when they say being pregnant increases your chances of sunburn (even with sunscreen), but I'm not peeling too bad yet from our trip, and it feels good to have a "healthy glow" right now.  A little Vitamin D for me and the lil' guy.  

Until next time, find some shade and read a good book.  Might I suggest The Help?  Scarfed that one down in just a few days and boy do a feel southern.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Take me away...!

Tomorrow Greg & I are doing something we've never done before together.
Awkward... what could this be??

No, not fishing.  

No, not taking a Chinese class.

No, not learning how to ballroom dance.

We are taking an overnight trip withOUT our little one!

And this is probably how she feels about it ...

How could we do this?!?

Well, here's how.  It will be our 4 year anniversary.  We took a quick trip before Mia was born to one of the many neat places in FL and we are doing the same sort of thing before this baby arrives this fall.  
And oh yeah, my parents will be watching her.  I sort of forgot to mention that is a crucial element.
She keeps asking if Jackson is coming too, so if this whole thing is a bust, I will promptly be blaming it on my younger brother! ;)

We'll only be gone a couple of days but we are really looking forward to it.  Granted, we are a bit nervous just as to how she'll do, but she'll be in quite capable hands.  

We'll see you when we get back!

Have you ever left your little ones and gone away for a quick vacay?  How did it go?  Any tips?  What NOT to do?

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Our little family

As alluded to a few posts back, L. Hine took our picture towards the end of June and sent us a little sampling the other day.  We've been enthralled with the pictures ever since we laid eyes on them and thought you might want to see them too...

You can see more pictures at Laura's post over here.

Friday, July 8, 2011

5 items I would have in my medicine cabinet

At baby showers, it is not uncommon for the expectant mom or set of parents to receive a goody basket full of baby ibuprofen or tylenol, diaper rash cream, gas drops or nursing cream.  In fact, I received all of these things and have at one point or another tried all of them, and was happy to not have to run out to the drugstore to grab them on a rainy night.

There are times though when the conventional treatments don't *work* or fix the problem like I would've liked, and thanks to a few friends, I have learned some different ways to treat certain ailments that may afflict your little one or other family members!

If I were to make my own all-natural/homeopathic goody bag for an expectant parent, here is what I would include, and why:

Aconite Flower, c/o Wikipedia

  • Aconitum Napellus, aka "Aconite," is a homeopathic treatment that I buy in the little blue Boiron tubes at my local healthfood store and always try to keep it in stock because according to B.B.H., it's the best thing to give at the onset of any illness.  Cold, fever, sore throat, vomiting, etc., if given within the first 12 hours it can really lessen or reduce the impact of the symptoms.  
  • Hepar Sulphuris Calcareum.  This is a great homeopathic treatment for the croup cough that is common in children under 5.  Aside from using hepar sulph, we'll use a humidifier in the room, and try to get as much rest as possible.  Using tea tree oil, lavender and the other essential oils on the hands or feet can help with croup, but try not to use both treatments at the same time.  Oils are powerful and can sometimes overpower the homeopathic treatment.  
  • Chamomilla tablets are great for a teething baby; it's essentially the same herb in teething tablets you can buy at any drugstore or Target.  Sometimes we give Mia chamomilla when she's freaking out for no apparent reason; it's great for reducing agitation and fear in an unsettled child.  When a child is older, you could also try real chamomile tea.  
  • Coldcalm can be used for cold and flu and similar to Zicam, is best when taken immediately and with greater frequency at the onset.  It is analogous to a conventional cold medication you'd buy at your pharmacy, treating a whole host of symptoms with various homeopathic ingredients. 
  • Black Elderberry Syrup (technically I would keep this in my refrigerator upon opening) is wonderful for that persistent cough or reducing the duration of the flu.  One day when Mia was hacking in church services, a family friend came up and just said, "Black Elderberry Syrup, that's what you need for Mia."  We quickly picked some up on our way home and Mia's cough was gone within days.  Some studies have even shown that it can reduce your flu by 4 days!  It was also shown to be 99% effective against the Avian Bird Flu.  
    Black Elderberry, c/o Gaia Herbs

    What I love about these remedies is that they are proven over time and have a greater track record than many of your typical over the counter remedies.  They have lasted over the years and stood the test of time, which gives me great comfort as a young mother treating a young child wondering, "Is this safe? Will this work? Am I hurting my child?"  

    Whenever we travel away from home for days at a a time, I will often pack Aconite and Hepar Sulph in my bag, because it seems Mia always comes down with something when we're away from home (stress, fatigue, less rest usually accompany our travels!).  It's nice to know we have a quick way to treat the symptoms before they blow up into something worse.  

    So the next time you're thinking about natural remedies for common ailments in your family, know that you can rely on many of the herbs and plants God has provided us on this earth!  

    Happy homeopathy!

    Disclaimer: Of course, I am not a medical doctor or a doctor of natural medicine, so if you have any concerns about you or your child's physical health before taking these remedies, please consult with a DOM, DNM or someone experienced in homeopathy.  There can be contraindications with herbs as well, i.e., if you are on prescription medication, nursing or pregnant.  /Concluding the "don't sue me" spiel.  

    This post was also shared at Nourishing Newbie.

    Wednesday, July 6, 2011

    A week in the life of Mia: late June/early July

    What can I say? After a near-record setting of 12 blog posts in June, I guess I just had to take it easy for a few days at the beginning of July.  We've been enjoyably distracted from the online world and I find it's good to detach every now and then.

    Here's what's been happening the last week and a half!

    Braden & Mia go to VBS

    VBS Day 2


    Final day of VBS: Abby makes an appearance,
    and we find 3 carseats can fit in our middle row!

    20 weeks, ready for yoga

    20 weeks outtake

    frozen custard with Nana

    + Amanda & Braden;
    Mia is slightly obsessed with Abby

    Breakfast at First Watch

    Watching our neighbor's fireworks on July 4

    Blurry family picture;
    matching stripey shirts not required

    looks like a riot!
    I'm actually 21 weeks today and feeling pretty good overall! I have a yoga pass that's about to expire so I've been using that as much as is possible, seeing my chiropractor about every month, and going to my regular OB appointments.  The little guy is getting more and more active; Greg actually felt him for the first time last night and he was bouncing around.  I pretend that he's doing handstands; I like to think he's getting ready for CrossFit (maybe someday in his future if Aunt Al has anything to do with it)!  I joked that Mia did the yoga poses with me while she was in utero (and she still likes to do downward dog to this day), and I like to think this dude is getting his pull-ups, handstands, kips and burpees in. Not that I know what half of those mean, but my CrossFittin' friends & fam sure do.  ;)  That one's for you guys, AW, LW, EG, NS, LA, MA!

    As Murray on Sesame Street says, "PEACE!"