Monday, 31 October 2011

The fun that is Costco.

I know Matt and I arent the only ones who do this... go on Costco dates.

We LOVE Costco. So much so that when we are bored, we go there for fun. Now this is a very dangerous activity to do for fun. You go in planning on picking up one or two things and end up coming out $300 poorer. Matt also enjoys the food from the restaurant. Hot dog and pop for $1.50? Yes please!

The worst (or should I say BEST) time is around Christmas. Usually around August they start bringing in all of their decorations, chocolates, wrapping and toys for the holidays. I love to go and just walk up and down the aisles looking at things. In the past two years we have bought our Christmas tree there, wrapping paper, bows, tags, candles, wreath, garland and a few other decorations. Honestly, I dont know why we shop anywhere else.

Picture from a Christmas at the old place... Most of the decor is bought at Costco.
 This year we have discovered that they also have fantastic stuff for kids. Adorable sleepers, clothes, toys and books. We picked up a 'Baby Einstein' excersaucer for Noah the other day. It was literally half the price of the same one at Babies R Us. We also got him a Christmas book, and it was hard to limit it to just one as there were tons of great ones.

This is the excersaucer we picked up for Noah. Still a little big for it!
 When our membership to Costco expired a few months back, we actually considered not renewing it. Then we realized that would be crazy. We buy everything there! Our meat, shampoo/conditioner, soap, razors, diapers, ect. all comes from Costco. If it wasnt for Costco we would be paying twice as much for alot of things.

Were now thinking of upping our membership. I guess were pretty much addicted.

Monday, 24 October 2011


      I get really into holidays. Family traditions are really important to me and I look forward to these events months in advance. Thanksgiving and Christmas are actually my two favorites. At Thanksgiving we always do turkey and all the trimmings. The house has to be decorated with fall leaves, pumpkins, cute scarecrows and orange/red candles. Oh and the two turkey decorations on the table is a must. Hard to explain what those are... so Ill just let your mind wander...

I have tons to be thankful for. This year specifically I am thankful for the wonderful blessing that is my son. I am thankful that we were able to buy our first house. And I am thankful that my husband has a great job so that I can take my full maternity leave and not have to worry. I am also thankful for my wonderful family, friends, church and a Savior who loves me.

We were blessed to have two Thanksgiving this year. Because my family was away during the real thing, our wonderful friends invited us to join them for their Thanksgiving in the park! They really made us feel like family and it was a beautiful afternoon.


Chowing down

Beautiful fall day to be outside

      We celebrated Thanksgiving this past Friday with my family. We had to do it two weeks later due to my family being busy basking in the Hawaiian sun during the real thing. However, we couldnt pass up an opportunity for a turkey dinner, so we just delayed it a little. And it was so worth the wait!

My smiley man

Time with Uncle Mike

Momma busy in the kitchen

Thursday, 20 October 2011

The Pumpkin Patch

We took Noah to the pumpking patch last weekend. Thankfully the rain held off and we were given a beautiful day at the farm. Sadly, he slept through alot of it. But what do you expect from a 2 month old?

Here are some highlights.

Sleep schedule - update!

It's been about a week since we put Noah on a sleep schedule. Every night (if were home) we give him a bath at around 7pm, followed by interactive playtime, then he eats, has story time, then bed at 930. It has been working great! The last 4 days he has slept between 10-12 hours a night. He gets up twice to feed; usually around 2am and then 530am. I don't mind a bit because he eats silently then goes straight back to sleep. He now goes to bed before I do and gets up after me! Amazing! Matt and I are so much better rested. We will definitely be doing this with all our kids. We have also been swaddling him at night which is helping alot. Noah tends to rub his face In his sleep and he always wakes himself up. By swaddling his arms in, he can't do this and therefore sleeps longer!

He does still have periods through out the day where he cries for half an hour or so - but after doing some reading I found out that a baby crying for 1 hour a day at 2 months is actually on the low end. The average at this age is 3 hours a day! So I try to remind myself that while I pace the floor with him screaming. I'm also getting better at dealing with the crying because I now realize that sometimes, babies just cry and there isn't anything you can do about it but try to comfort them. It still makes me sad when he's sad, but I they to stay calm and laugh about it when possible.

Now we just need to fall into a schedule for daily naps. I'm trying to follow the EASY schedule. Sleep, eat, activity, your time (my time) every 1.5-2 hours. We'll see how it works out.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Sleep schedule

We have decided to try and get Noah on a sleep schedule. I know he is very young and that it may take months before he's sleeping how we'd like him to. But it's worth a try right? Come on, were first time parents here, cut us some slack.

Last night as always, Noah began to get cranky around 630pm. The plan was to let him sleep for half an hour or so and then give him a bath. We knew this would be a battle, but after the sleepless nights we'd been having we were willing to try it. Matt offered to do it which I thought was very brave of him. So I sat downstairs with my grandma while my baby screamed murder upstairs for 15 minutes. It was heartbreaking! I felt a little like I was abandoning my child, which I knew was ridicules considering Matt was right there with him. I kept telling myself over and over, "He's fine. He's safe. This isn't going to hurt him." Matt brought him back down and handed him to me and I could see the little tears on his cheeks. So sad! He began to calm down right away and stopped crying, but his little chest was still heaving and it was hard to watch. I put him on his playmat and helped him shake some of the little toys dangling in front of his face. The he smiled. All was well in the world again!

I knew he was exhausted but he managed to stay awake and happy until 930pm. Three hours later then he usually went to sleep! Matt suggested we try putting him in his bassinet awake and see if he'd go to sleep by himself. Usually we have to rock him to sleep first, but its become a bad habit that he wont go down on his own. However, he fell asleep all by himself (other then holding onto Matts finger - so cute!) He woke up for two feedings in the night, but both times went right back to sleep on his own. Guess exhaustion will do that to you!

We plan to keep up with this. Short nap if needed, followed by bath, playtime, then story time. We want him to be able to anticipate what's coming so he understands that it's time to settle down for the Night. Hopefully it becomes routine sooner then later for him.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

"just a phase"

If there is one thing I've learned as a mom it's this; babies are unpredictable! Just when you think you've got them figured out they throw another curve ball at you.

For Noahs first 7 weeks of life he was a dream baby. Seriously, he was so good! He rarely cried. Probably total amount a day was like 15 minutes. He was a pretty good sleep too and had begun to sleep 6 hours, eat, then sleep another 4 hours. He smiled all the time and loved to coo all day long.

Then came week 7 and it was like another baby replaced mine. He was not the same kid anymore! He began to fuss every time he was put down, needed Matt or I constantly in view if he was awake and stopped sleeping well. He also wanted to eat every 2.5 hours. Not fun.

We had a couple of scares where he seemed to be choking and we almost took him to the emergency department. Turns out he has a touch of infant reflux and occasionally brings the milk back up into his throat and aspirates it a bit causing him to splutter, cough and takes big breathes in. Terrifying as it was for mum and dad, we have been reassured that he WILL clear it and he will also grow out of it within a month or two. In the meantime I now have to feed him sitting upright and burp him through out the feeding instead of just at the end. These things seem to have helped a lot.

After severel nights of pretty much no sleep I had to call in back up yesterday. I was so exhausted and frustrated with my grumpy child I sent a text to a friend who came over to help out for the day. Just having someone else around to hold him was a huge relief to me. She also went to the doctor with me for Noahs 2 month shots. I was having a horrible time with the thought of him being in pain, so she kindly stepped up and held him while he got the three needle pokes. Not gonna lie, I totally cried when he cried.

Today he seems to be back to his old self again. He is super happy, smiley and chatty. The only real side affect from his shots seems to be that his legs are a bit sore. No fever, no added grumpiness. Now if only we could fix this annoying sleeping situation of being awake from midnight onward! He sleeps really good from 7pm til 12am, but then will wakeup every hour or two for the rest of the night. Not cool! I'm going to try and keep him awake longer at night if possible. It'll probably mean an unhappy baby for a while but we have got to correct his schedule! Matt and I are beyond exhausted.

I'm just glad that my happy baby is back! It makes the no sleep thing alot more tolerable!

Thursday, 6 October 2011

We are a travelling family... on a budget.

If  you were to ask anyone from my family what one of our favorite things to do is, we would probably reply with one word. Travel! My happiest memories are of our trips to various places. Its the only time when we are all together for several days without the distractions of work, school or other stresses. My family is very close and we do spend alot of time together on a weekly basis, but its different on vacation. Everyone is just so much more relaxed and happy. It has become a very important time to us.

You are probably thinking, "Well sure if you are loaded." Let me be clear here... we definitely arent loaded. But we do make family trips a priority. Everyone spends money on different things; clothes, housewares, eating out, the latest electronics. We channel it in another direction. There are also ways to majorly cut costs when it comes to travel.

First of all, forget staying in a hotel! Crazy expensive and you really dont get much for your money. We choose to stay in condos or suites with full kitchens. Not only are they cheaper, but we are then able to cook most of our meals (another cost saving idea)  and fit more people in our room to help split costs.They are way roomier and usually come with shared ameneties such as pools, hottubs, bbqs and a concierge.

Travel off season. Unless you find a screamin deal, travelling when others arent will save you alot of money. Avoid Christmas, July/August and spring break. Airlines, accomodations and car rentals go way up at these times of year. If you are keen to travel during these times, book far in advance. See two paragraphs down.

Book online. Check out expedia or travelocity for flights, VRBO for accomodations and priceline for car deals. Usually you can save money by also booking your activities online, such as amusment park passes or day tours. Sometimes if you buy passes to things in advance you will even save yourself time by getting to jump the line.

Book early! Alot of people think by waiting to the last minute you get the best deals. Its true, you can get some very good deals if you are willing to wait until the week or two before you want to go. However, this will limit your options and there is a reason there is availibilty. If you have a specific idea of a place you want to go, usually booking 6 months in advance will score you a better price.

So there you have it. Carolyns travel tips. Hope they are helpful :)

Monday, 3 October 2011

Paranoid mother

"Matt! Is he breathing? Did he puke?" Any odd noises from Noah cause me to shoot up out of bed to check on him and make sure he's okay.

I had a feeling I would be a paranoid mommy. I've always been a worrier, so I figured that that worry would only increase once I was responsible for my own child. It definitely did! I have a paranoia of SIDS. I try not to think about it, but whenever Noah has weird breathing patterns (which is normal for an infant) I cannot sleep. I know the odds are low but it's still scary.

Right now I am worried that Noah has a bug of some kind. He's not sleeping as usual, wants to eat smaller more frequent meals, is clingy and is fussier then normal. He doesn't have fever or a runny nose so he's probably okay. But I cant help worrying. Normally a sick child is not a big deal, but I was told a sick infant under 3 months old is a big deal. I called the doctor this morning since I had to make an appointment for Noahs shots anyways and they wantme to bring him in tomorrow of things don't change in the next 24 hours. If anything that'll give me some peace of mind.

I know worry accomplishes nothing and that God is in control of all. But it's still not easy for me to just put these thoughts out of my mind. I honestly try really hard too, but it just keeps creeping back in. Being a mommy is hard on the brain!