Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Summer To Do List!

Most people (I assume) have a bucket list- a list of things they want to do before they die. I don't really have mine written down, but there are quite a few things I have in mind that I'd love to do before I croak. In fact, my husband and I plan to do a lot of traveling once our kids are older and out of the house. Well, my friend over at TheMamaBomb did a kind of spin off of a bucket list. She's been doing a summer bucket list. I thought this was such a wonderful idea. There are so many fun things to do during the summertime, so having a list of things to get done leave us with a lot of fun summer activities to do. It's also quite hard to get out a lot during the winter time and it's not an idea I even entertain half of the time. Just thinking about getting out on snowy roads with two kids sounds like an awful idea. Which is why I will be looking for a lot of indoor activities once the winter rolls around. Anyway! I loved her idea so I made a list of things I would like to do during the summer while we have a lot of time and the weather is nice. Of course there are many days where it's just so dang humid, we don't even want to bother getting out. I mean, even if we went to an indoor activity, having to walk out into the humid air is awful enough to keep me home.

We have kind of a short list as my husband is currently taking classes towards his degree and we have one (manual) car that I can't drive. (Maybe that should go on my list- learn to drive a manual car!) However, once we complete our short list, I will find more things to add. I'm always finding new things to do through some local moms. We have this nice little group formed (thanks to one lovely lady who put the group together) and there are always tons of new ideas of things to do floating around in the group. (I actually put "host a play date" on my list so I can get to know more of these women.) We're also pretty frugal in our home, so when we can avoid spending money, we do. So I always try to add things that will be either free, or extremely inexpensive, but fun! So far we've done quite a few fun things.

Go to the Wonderlab- This was something I had been looking into for a really long time. I wanted to wait until I felt my little guy was old enough to enjoy it and get something out of it. We finally took him this summer and he had such a blast! We'll definitely be taking him back quite a few more times before the summer is over. He especially loved the little "bubble room" they had there. The kid is seriously obsessed with bubbles.

Go bowling- This is one of those things that was a hit or miss. Thanks (again) to my friend over at TheMamaBomb for posting about Kids Bowl Free, we were able to sign C up to bowl free all summer long. This included 2 free games every single day until the end of summer. It did not however, include shoe rental. Now we could have signed up for the family pass, which would have given us a pass for 4 adults to bowl under the same "rules" as the Kids Bowl Free, but we didn't think we'd go enough. It's a good thing we didn't, because we only went bowling once so far. For our 2.5 year old, one game at a time was enough. He was cranky half of the time and happy the other half. 
We didn't think he really enjoyed it, so we figured we wouldn't go back again. However, the next day all he wanted to do was go bowling. He even remembered that I had a green ball and his dad used an orange ball. So when he got up he got into his toys and gave me the green one and said "Mommy's turn" and would cheer for me when I "did it". I'm not even sure what kind of bowling we were doing, but he was having a blast. So I think we'll go back a couple more times.

Jumpin' Joeys- This is my little dudes favorite place! (Well one of them.) He just loves going to the bouncy house and bouncing around. The arcade is pretty freakin' cool for him as well. It can be hard to get him to leave once we're there. For just one child, this is pretty inexpensive and he can bounce around for as long as he'd like. This is great when we need to wear him out so he'll take a nap. 

Splash Pad- Oh my goodness! This is another one of our absolute favorite outdoor activities. We've gone quite a few times actually. He will run around like a crazy person playing in the water. He just loves water. Bath time is probably his favorite, so it makes sense that he would love the splash pad. We attempted to go to our pool at our apartment complex, but he's just too young and a little bit too crazy to take advantage of the pool. (I have a huge water fear, so it really stresses me out having him around the water.) So the splash pad is the perfect medium.

Parks- This kind of seems like a weird one to put on the list because it's the park. However, sometimes we can get so comfortable doing the same boring things, we forget to take advantage of some of our great parks we have around here. So far this summer we have been to at least 4 different parks in our area. He loves running around with other kids and always has a blast at the park, so I love taking him to different parks to play. Of course we have our favorite which we frequently visit, but going to different parks here and there can also be fun.
Library- So this is another strange one to have on the list, but like I said, sometimes we forget to take advantage of the simple, yet fun things we have to do around here. We've been to the library several times this summer. It's the perfect hangout when it's too hot to be outside and when C is getting to restless being stuck inside. We can check out new movies or books and let him play with other kids for however long he wants and he loves being there. 

Famers' Market- You would not believe the number of times I've planned to get to our local Farmers' Market only to have something come up. We finally did make it last Saturday and got an amazing haul of stuff. I actually plan to write a separate post dedicated to this, but it was a great time! We had fun walking around and C got some honey stick and blueberries that he really enjoyed eating. It was also nice being able to support out local farmers! (Shop local when you can!

I have several other things I have on my list that I'm determined to get done before the end of summer. Although, we're probably putting the zoo off for a cooler month. Not that it's been ridiculously hot this summer, we've actually had some amazing days, but we're also super busy with getting ready to move and my husband's finals coming up. So it's just more convenient to wait to go to the zoo. That's probably the one thing I'm looking forward to most though! Of course there are things we've done that I haven't put on my list as well. Sometimes we just like to do things spontaneously because sometimes, it's just more fun not to plan everything out. 

So tell me, do you have a list of things you want to get done during the summer? What about a bucket list? Tell me, what is something you've always wanted to do, but haven't yet? You should absolutely set a date and do whatever it is you want to do!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

A Busy Life With Two Boys!

It's been two long months since I've last written a blog post. I even have a draft saved that I was working on the day before I went into labor and gave birth to our second son. Yep, we had another boy. We actually knew before giving birth we were having another boy, we just decided to tell very few people. Hopefully soon I can sit down and write his (and my oldest son's) birth story out, but for now, I just want to write about life with two boys. Our second son was born May 8th at 8:14 pm. We named him Casper Oliver! I think it has a good ring with Chester Arthur.
 I was seriously only in (active) labor for roughly 2 hours and only pushed a few times and he was out! 

Things have been crazy since he was born, but I wouldn't trade it for anything. The one night we stayed at the hospital, our oldest son got a pretty bad cut on his forehead from jumping around on the bed so he had to get glue on it. He now has a scar on the right side of his forehead that will make for an interesting story when he's a bit older. I've already had people asking if we're stopping with the two or if we're going to have more kids. I think this is the craziest question yet. Our second is only two months old and the adjustment from one to two kids hasn't been the easiest on anyone. I see some families going from one to two kids with ease, but for us, it just wasn't that simple. It was really hard on Chester.

 At first he pretended his brother didn't exist and refused to nurse with him especially if his foot happened to touch him. This was one of the hardest things. It took him forever to nurse for the first time after his brother was born and it broke my heart. I wasn't really ready for him to wean. Thinking back to that moment, I feel silly because he's nursing more and more now. It doesn't seem like there's an end coming to his nursing. Maybe when he goes to college or on his wedding day? Who knows. I will say that I don't need your comments about weaning him. It's not your problem. It's really not a problem at all.

I decided to hold off on potty training my toddler until after the baby was born because having so many changes happening around our home, I didn't think it was in his best interest to add something else on top of it. That changed yesterday when I took his diaper off to change him and he refused to have another put on. So I pulled his frog potty out of the bathroom, stuck it in the bedroom (where we were hanging out while baby C slept) and let him play video games while sitting on the potty. He had a couple small accidents on the floor, but has gone at least 3 times in the potty. I'm pretty excited and totally proud of him! So last night when I tried putting his pajama shirt on him and he requested his "creeper" (Minecraft) shirt, I figured, why the heck not. So we picked him up some "big boy" underwear. We let him pick it out and he picked Spider-Man, because Spider-Man is awesome! He had an accident in them and was so upset he started crying. I think I'm most worried about nighttime potty training since he's nursing a bunch at night still. Oh and we attempted the cloth trainers, but they're too much like a diaper for him that he just doesn't mind if he pees in them. So I'm sticking with naked time and "big boy" underwear.

I want to say that cloth diapering and babywearing a newborn are a little more difficult than I thought it was going to be. I'll be honest, I wasn't as thrilled about it as I thought I'd be and that makes me a little sad. I also kind of feel guilty. I have a beautiful stash of newborn diapers, but was just so annoyed a lot of the time with them. I guess it was because I forgot how often a newborn needs changed. I feel like the reason I wanted so many AIO newborn diapers was because they were so cute and covers and prefolds were so boring. The AIOs really didn't fit as long as I had hoped since baby C grew quickly! At 2 months he's already 16 pounds.

However I did like the snap down rise for the umbilical cord. That was pretty convenient. As for babywearing, I had 2 options. I have a ringsling and I have a Boba that has an infant carry you can do. I've never been a fan of wraps, so I didn't have one. (Although, now I'm wishing I had one for those beginning days.) I really just don't like my Boba so I didn't even attempt it. I managed to get the ringsling working for us up until he was heavy enough to put in the Ergo or the Tula. I'll be honest, while he was fresh out of the oven, I just carried him around everywhere instead of wearing him. I feel much more comfortable now that he's able to ride in the Ergo and Tula without  issues.

So what have these two months been like for us? Crazy! But I wouldn't trade it for anything. I love my boys and they bring me so much happiness. I look forward to blogging about our journey with these crazy kids and all the fun adventures we're going to have.
As most of you are probably very aware, World Breastfeeding Month is coming up in August. There are fun events (The Big Latch On) (or for us in Indiana we have Latch On Indiana) and of course I will be doing my breastfeeding series. It'll be fun talking writing about tandem nursing and the fact that I have now been nursing just about 3 years. Holy cow!
For now how about I just leave you with a few adorable pictures of the boys? Because everyone loves baby pictures!