Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A Little Help for a "Friend"..

I have become oh.so.attached to Megan over at "In this Wonderful Life" over the past 2 years. If I tell you the truth, I don't even know how I found her, but my life is so much better because I did. No, we don't know each other. No, we've never met. But, my friends & I talk about her like we do. "Have you seen Prego Mego's post this week?" "Did you hear about the twin's hearts?! THEY'RE PERFECT!" Yes...some might think it's strange that I've become attached to women I will likely never see in person, but I feel like we all share bonds that makes reading their daily lives worthwhile. Anyway, she is pregnant with twins (boy & girl...Knox & Sloane) & is wondering what her readers' favorite things are. I know I've done several "Must Have Monday" posts, but in one big recap, here are my "must have baby products" in no particular order.

{1} So, I know that I had blogged about Tommee Tippee bottles previously. But, I now stand by Dr. Brown's. I am not putting down Tommee Tippee bottles by any means, but when Kinsley Anne went to the occupational therapist for feeding troubles, they recommended the switch. The OT said that most babies do very well with Dr. Brown's. The trouble that Kinsley Anne was having with TT's was that she was pushing the nipple between her tongue & the roof of her mouth and not sucking the nipple like she should have been. It was creating a lot of hard work for her, she was tiring, and vomiting as a result. Her feeding time went from 40+ minutes down to 11 minutes or less for a full bottle by just switching bottles. We have always used level 2 nipples since we switched. They also make "Y" cut nipples if you need to put rice cereal in the bottle for thickening purposes.
{2} Diaper Genie. I blogged about this here. We have 2, one upstairs, one down. They hold a ridiculous number of diapers & REALLY cut the odor. The only downside is that you have to buy the diaper genie refills.

{3} Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Sunscreen. It comes in a normal sunscreen or a stick. We use the normal stuff for her body & scalp. We use the stick for her face to prevent it running down her face. It's pricey, but this is what the pediatrician recommended, so we're sticking to it!
{4} Bright Starts Ingenuity Automatic Bouncer - Bella Vista. This was found at Target. I blogged about it here. Many nights when Kinsley Anne was just a teensy newborn, she wouldn't sleep in anything but this. It saved my sanity...at least partially, anyway. :)
{5} Bumbo. Also, blogged about this one here. This really helped develop her neck & head control. She started out slumping to the side but quickly got good at this. We now use this frequently in the bathtub since I'm paranoid that she'll fall over and drown. Yes, I know...highly unlikely considering I barely take my hands off of her in the tub, but still....
{6} Bright Starts - Doodle Bug Around We Go. This was Kinsley Anne's Easter present this year. We bought it at Sam's. She LOVES this thing. It has 3 sound settings that change when you flip the pages on a "book" in front of the keyboard. It also has lots of other sensory toys & she doesn't get bored very easily while playing in it. We let her play outside in it when we're playing in the yard, inside when we just want our arms free, etc. She likes that she can "walk around." It was really reasonably priced, but if you're not a member at Sam's, I'm sure other places have similar variations.
{7} Chicco Liteway. This thing is amazing. It's small, lightweight, easy to work. I take walks with Kinsley Anne in this thing & she loves sitting up in it like a big girl. It turns on a dime. If you're looking for a relatively inexpensive singleton lightweight stroller, I highly recommend this. Maybe they have a double version?
{8} Chicco Cortina Travel System Stroller - Discovery. These things are bulky, but SO necessary. I can't tell you how many times I was thankful to have a travel system when Kinsley Anne had fallen asleep in the car & we had to run in and out of a store for an errand. Or when you have to go into the doctor's office with her diaper bag, etc & I could click her in, throw the bag underneath, and scoot on our way. I honestly don't use the stroller too much anymore because we have the lightweight one, but I definitely got my money's worth!
{9} The First Years BPA Free Gumdrop Newborn Pacifiers. We first used the circular pacifiers that they use in the hospital, but then I found these. They are the exact same nipple, but the shape lets their nose stay free. Kinsley Anne LOVES her gumdrops & the occupational therapist said that these are what they recommend to parents.
{10} Summer Infant Complete Coverage Video Monitoring System. This was one of the most expensive items that we registered for, but it has saved us a lot of sleeplessness & overall, we're very impressed by it. Kinsley Anne's nursery is upstairs, our bedroom is downstairs. We set up the video camera on a little shelf over her crib, the big screen is down in our bedroom, and the handheld goes wherever we need it to. The quality is really fantastic. Occasionally, we're annoyed by the static, but it really is a great system. Babies make lots of "normal noises." And, it's hard to tell by an audio-only monitor what is just noise & what means "I need you." So, this has helped us to sort that out from bed rather than having to go check on her everytime we hear something.
{11} Summer SwaddleMe. These things are AMAZING. Kinsley Anne wouldn't sleep well unless we used it. I am a nurse & was formally taught how to swaddle with a receiving blanket, but when you have a baby who should be nicknamed Houdini, no amount of swaddling expertise will keep your child wrapped tight. This thing works & is well worth the money.

If I think of other must haves, I'll be sure to add another post. I hope this helps, Megan (& other expectant moms!)

Until Next Time..
Love, Jen

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday

I am going to try something new this week....
Jamie @ This Kind of Love hosts "What I'm Loving Wednesday" each week. It seems like a fun blog hop that I have seen on lots of other people's blogs. So, why not, right? Without further ado...here's what I'm loving this week!

I'm loving.....

this sweet girl, as always

and her daddy, of course!

the following MudPie outfits for Kinsley on 4th of July...which do you love more?
Mud Pie Crab Tunic and Legging Set - Size 12-18 months

this necklace. Fab'rik, where this necklace is from, just opened up locally...so exciting!

This black & white dress from the Biggest Loser finale last night. How flattering is this?! If anyone knows where it's from, let me know!

The Final Three applaud Olivia's husband Ben for his weight loss

The Real Housewives of New Jersey. I admit, the current drama is a little (or a lot) much, but I am still addicted. It's like a bad wreck, you just can't help but look.

Now, what are you loving this week?
Hop over to Jamie's blog & let us know!

Until Next Time..
Love, Jen

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Kinsley Anne @ 7 months!

All day today, I have been amazed that I have a SEVEN month old daughter. Where did those 7 months go?! I am loving being mommy & our routine has finally fallen into place. I am not a huge routine or schedule person (as all of you who know me are aware), but Kinsley Anne has put herself on one that we're all liking. So..without further ado, here is what you are doing at 7 months, miss K..

  • Wearing size 2 diapers.
  • Wearing 6 & 9 month clothing. You are a long baby, so many of your 6 month pants look like capris or high waters.. The majority of the 9 month clothes are too big on you though, skinny minnie.
  • At your 6 month well visit, you were 14lb 4oz (24th percentile) & 26in long (48th percentile).
  • Sitting very well
  • Love, love, loving the bathtub. You like to sit and splash & grab at your water buddy toys. We fill them with water & squirt them at you and you make the funniest face when the water hits your belly. You also don't mind as much anymore when we lay you down in the water. You kind of squint & make a face at first, but then relax and kick your legs like crazy. You don't mind at all when we wash your hair, even if we were to pour a full bucket of water over your head. You just blink your eyes & let it wash over your face. ha
  • Trying so very hard to crawl. Your arms are so strong so you will push so hard that you move backwards. You haven't figured out the forward scoot or crawl but you get your legs up under you and try. You just haven't figured out the right motion yet. I have a feeling that the day of crawling will soon be upon us.
  • Still making the funniest faces. Please don't hate me forever for posting this picture, but this one, we call your "grandpa forgot his dentures" face:
    Sleeping very well! Once we got your ear infection situation under control last month, you started sleeping through the night again & haven't looked back.
  • Going to bed at 8pm each night like clockwork & sleeping through the night

  • Your typical school day goes something like this:
6:45am - wake up, get dressed, take Advair & Prevacid
7:00am - eat bottle
7:30am - arrive at Daycare & playtime begins!
~9am - sometimes take a cat nap
10am - eat veggie & bottle
play, play, play, & take a nap
12:30pm - take Zantac
1:00pm - eat bottle
play, play, play & take a nap
4pm - eat fruit &bottle
play, play, play, occasionally take a cat nap & mom picks me up from daycare ~5pm
~6-6:30pm - eat some type of mixed baby food & little bottle
play, play, play, laugh at the puppies, smile & play with daddy, love on mommy
~8pm - sit in the glider with mom, eat nighttime bottle with rice cereal in it, read "Guess How Much I Love You" & start to fall asleep.
~815pm - mom lays you down in your crib, Daddy tells me goodnight

  • Loving your baby food, except for peas! yuck, I don't blame you :)
  • Being nosy. Tonight, we went out to eat & you were craning your neck so badly to see the people talking behind you. All while eating some supper. You are one talented little girl. ha!

  • Loving your puppies. When they come in the house, you can't take your eyes off of them. Your daddy got the funniest video of you last night. I was holding you on my hip & whenever the dogs would walk up to us, you just absolutely lost it laughing. If the dogs jumped up to put their paws up on me, you thought that that was even funnier. You had your daddy & I laughing hysterically for about 20 minutes. We went to bed very happy parents.
  • Being such a sweet girl. Your personality is shining through & you are a very energetic & unfocused little girl, but when it's quiet time, you are one heck of a good cuddler.
Kinsley Anne,
Seven months. One part of me wonders how it has only been 7 months since we have met you because it seems like we've known you for our whole lives. But part of me cringes at the thought of 7 months already having gone past because it seems like just the blink of an eye. I wish so badly that there was a way to push "pause" on nights like last night when the 3 of us (plus our 2 puppies) were having such a good time together. It's nights like last night that I just know we have lots of fun & warm memories in our future. I cherish each evening when I get to rock with you & read you "Guess How Much I Love You." I quickly memorized this book & sometimes recite it without even opening the pages since you don't pay the book any attention while you lay in my arms eating. I love that the end of the book tells you that I love you right up to the moon...and back. It couldn't be more true. I add every.single.night that I will love you "always, always, always and forever" and end it with giving you a kiss. I hope that you will remember that sweet girl. Your mommy and daddy will stand behind you in all that you do in life & we couldn't be more proud to say that you are our daughter.

We love you and always will,

Love, mama & daddy

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

First Mother's Day

Ok, Ok. I've been pestered enough. I'm back. haha. Not that I was every really gone but nonetheless I have got to start posting more regularly again. Let me start with a weekend recap.

So, Friday I had moved my patients up to be seen from 8-10am rather than the typical 10-12. That was so that I could boogie out of the office as soon as I was done, pick up Kinsley, and we (including Kyle) could head to Charleston. We did just that & were on the road by 11 with our destination being The Citadel. Friday was the final parade of the spring semester...the graduation parade...aka The Long Grey Line Parade. During this parade, the juniors who will be company commanders, batallion commanders, etc "take over" that rank from the graduating seniors. Those juniors then get to lead their respective companies out of the parade. The graduating seniors also all line up in their most formal uniform all across the parade deck & march across the field in one long line. It's pretty darn cool to watch. Anyway, the special reason we wanted to go was to watch Kyle's youngest brother take over as his company commander. Delta company is now under his reign...look out Delta! :) We are proud of him. I have pictures but haven't uploaded them. I'll do a picture post soon...promise.

Friday night, we ate supper with Clay & took him back to the barracks to finish (or start) cleaning up for the end of the semester. Then, we went off to meet up with friends. We stayed in their gorgeous home that night. Kinsley did great, by the way, with this being out of her ordinary routine. She slept in the pack n play the same as she would have her crib...it was great. I think we even gave our friends "the fever" since Kinsley was so well behaved. Once we got up and moving Saturday morning, Kyle & I went downtown to shop/browse. We somehow ended up just browsing & not buying. This never happens in Charleston. So, we met Clay for lunch when he was released from school & we shopped some at the outlets. Then, we went home. Saturday night, there was a "spring fling" downtown. It was an interesting event for people watching. The outfits people wear...ohhhh man. It's amazing how much skin people feel is appropriate to show off. Kinsley sat in her stroller with eyes.wide.open. She was amazed as much as I was...but for different reasons. We stopped on the way home for Krispy Kreme donuts. yum.yum.yum.

Sunday morning, I woke up to the most precious babygirl's smile. It was the very best mother's day gift that I could ask for. I climbed back into bed with her & ate an Oreo Krispy Kreme donut. Bed + Kinsley Anne + Kyle + donut = best combination ever! Kyle had bought me some new Loft clothes that he knew I wanted & I wore one of my new dresses to church. We went out to eat at the golf course afterwards & then spent most of the day outside. We went around to go see Kyle's grandmothers & great aunt. We brought them all big vases of flowers to help brighten their day. Then, we ate supper and relaxed at home together. Last year, I was a mom-to-be and was wished a Happy Mother's Day by many. But this year? It was unexplainable to move into the ranks of the many moms in the world. An honor. I looked at Kinsley Anne about 230967 times in awe. We helped make her. God gave her to us. He made me a mom. She makes me a mom everyday. I can't wait to hear her call me mama. I.love.her.

So, my weekend was fabulous. Busy, but wonderful. I wish I could have seen my mom, grandmom, and nanny, but I spoke to each of them & I tried to make sure that they knew just how much I love them.

I hope that each and every one of you enjoyed your weekend & had a great mother's day.

Until Next Time..
Love, Jen

Monday, May 2, 2011


Wow. I have been MIA.

Life has just been hectic. This past weekend was so nice. Perfectly refreshing. Just what I needed! Wednesday, my parents flew in. My mom was on spring break so they decided to come spend some time with us! Thursday, my sister drove up to join us.

Friday, Kinsley Anne had her 6 month checkup. She was:

15lbs, 4oz (~25th percentile)
26in long (48th percentile)

She's a petite little thing but the doctor gave her a fabulous report & we have the go ahead to really start increasing her baby food intake. She is going to love it, I'm sure! The pediatrician also felt that she was going to be up and moving soon. She says that the "little ones" seem to crawl, stand, and walk sooner than the bigger babies because they have less weight to carry around. Look out world, here she comes!

Saturday morning, bright & early, we walked. I will do a full post on this to come soon. We walked with the March of Dimes & we really enjoyed ourselves. We are so thankful for Kinsley Anne. Despite her prematurity & "birth defect," she is just perfect to us. She has overcome a lot & we will continue to support her to do the best she can!

Saturday afternoon, we lounged, my mom and I made a little Target trip, and then we ate dinner at the golf course. Sitting outside in the sunshine with my family...ahh, sweet relaxation. Then, we had to say our goodbyes which gets harder & harder with time. I despise "goodbye" anyway, but now with Kinsley Anne, I wish they could be here to enjoy every her like I do. But, ultimately, that's life. At least they plan to move down here when she's up, running around, and making her memories. My sister stayed with us until Sunday, so at least I didn't have to say bye to everyone.

Sunday, we went to church, came home & ate lunch, and did some more lounging. Kyle washed cars & I tried to keep Kinsley Anne happy. She has a little white spot on her lower gum & she is shoving everything in her mouth. Starting Sunday night, she has slept horribly. She can't stay asleep for more than an hour. We have tried Tylenol, Motrin, Baby Orajel, cold teething rings, etc. WHAT IS AN EXHAUSTED MAMA TO DO?? I just want her to feel better. There is no way she can be her happy self when she is not sleeping worth a darn. Last night, she straddled my waist, put her arms around me like she was hugging me, laid her head on my chest, and we rocked and rocked and rocked. We both fell asleep like this in the rocker/glider in her room. Kyle woke me up and she stayed asleep in her crib until ~2am and then the nightmare started again. OTHER MAMAS, I NEED YOUR HELP! What did you do to help your tiny tot make it through teething with sleep?

Anyway, pictures from the weekend will be up soon. I will try to be better about posting regularly again.....if I can keep my eyes open long enough.

Until Next Time..
Love, Jen