Aug 24

The Big Week Ahead

Posted by Lori | Posted in back to school, big kid, daycare, kindergarten, life, milestone | Posted on 24-08-2014

It is Sunday evening. Both kids are bathed and in bed. Here I sit, anxious and nervous.

We have a big week ahead of us.

Here is what is on our agenda for tomorrow:

Quinn’s first day at her new daycare. Porter goes to the sitter for the day. Aaron’s first day back to work since being at home with the children all summer. First day of the semester, which not only means our work place will be bustling with returning and new students, but I will attend my first Accounting 101 course after work. Full 9-5 work day followed by 3.25 hours of Accounting class. Man, I hope I make it through the semester!

Tuesday:

Day 2 for Quinn at her new daycare. Porter’s first day of Kindergarten! My baby is going to school all day and then to his new babysitter’s house until we can pick him up. (Much to our dismay, we could not find a suitable childcare facility in our area that would take Quinn and pick up Porter after school. They two near us that we could afford were not places we felt comfortable leaving our kids.)  He spent all last week with his new sitter (so Aaron could get some class prep time in) and he loves it there and he will be with some other kindergarteners. This will be the first day that we have to do two different drop-offs and two different pick-ups while dealing with back-to-school college traffic.

Wednesday:

Day 3 of new daycare for Quinn. Porter goes back to the sitter. Yes, Porter’s schedule is staggered the first week to give the teachers more time to assess the kindergarteners and to get the children slowly acclimated to their new routine while in smaller groups. Great for the kids, but hard for the daycare situation.

Thursday:

Day 4 of new daycare for Quinn. Porter goes back to school–this time with his whole class, not just a third of it. This is the first day his entire class will meet each other. There is a Parent tour of the kindergarten at 2:30pm that neither Aaron nor I can make due to work (I have a show going into technical rehearsal and Aaron is teaching class. Ugh.)

Friday:

Day 5 of Quinn at new daycare. Porter goes to school. Friends come in from out of town to stay with us for the weekend (yay!) and I turn 36.

Then after all of that upheaval we all have Labor Day off! And we start with the crazy all over again on September 2!

So please, send good vibes my way this week. Lots of scheduling craziness, new routines, and stupid traffic to deal with. I’m already looking forward to next weekend!

Aug 13

Quinn at 14 months

Posted by Lori | Posted in baby, milestone, toddler | Posted on 13-08-2014

photo 2

It has been ages since I have written a proper update on the stats of our little Quinn, so this is long overdue. Q turned 14 months just last Saturday–yes, time is flying!

 

What Quinn is Wearing:

  • Sizes 18 months and 2T clothing. Little Miss is over 25lbs but taller than Porter was at this point.
  • Size 3 diapers.
  • Size 4 shoes.

What Quinn is Eating:

  • There isn’t too much Quinn doesn’t like–though we did find out this week she doesn’t like banana bread. She is a good eater and only occasionally refuses food if she doesn’t like the texture (even if she ate it the day before) or if you try to feed her with a utensil (girlfriend is an independent woman who insists on feeding herself, thankyouverymuch.)
  • Are you eating? Then she wants whatever you are having.
  • LOVES: grapes, peaches, strawberries, watermelon
  • Successfully using a sippy cup and drinking out of straws.

What Quinn is Saying:

  • Daddy (Da-ee) –first word
  • “Hi!” She says it to everyone and everything.
  • “Hey!” Or sometimes a very sassy “HEEEY!”
  • Once or twice I have heard a “yeah” from her.
  • She says “Ma” but not consistently enough to make me believe she is referring to me.
  • She will shake her head for “no” and nod for “yes” and she will answer appropriately when you ask her things. And if she really, really wants something, she’ll go over to it and nod “yes” with all her might while blinking her eyes extra hard for emphasis!

What Quinn Likes These Days:

  • Being up on the couch.
  • Playing under blankets. She laughs so hard–especially if you are under there with her.
  • Stacking rings.
  • Her toy musical instruments.
  • Books.
  • Playing with the curtains as the breeze blows through the open window making them billow!

What Quinn Doesn’t Like These Days:

  • Having her hair rinsed in the bath.
  • Having her teeth brushed.
  • When she doesn’t get what she wants.

What Quinn is Doing:

  • Working on walking. She can take about 10-15 steps on her own and is now walking from couch to coffee table, from coffee table to chair, etc.
  • Communicating without words.
  • Playing with her brother.
  • Mimicking Mommy or Daddy cleaning and cooking. She likes to pretend to “mix” stuff with a spoon and bowl.
  • Trying to climb up the stairs when you aren’t looking.

Quinn starts at a brand new daycare in a week and a half. I’m happy for her to have a place to hang out with other babies her age since she has spent most of the summer in the company of her dad and older brother. She had her first haircut last week (just the bangs so they aren’t in her eyes!) I love watching her grow and yet I sort of want her to stay little. Excuse me while I go cry about this…

Aug 11

New To School and Back To School

Posted by Lori | Posted in AWESOME, back to school, big kid, crazy stories, life, milestone, school | Posted on 11-08-2014

In just two short weeks, our Porter will be starting a whole new adventure: he will be starting Kindergarten.

In just two short weeks, I will be starting a whole new adventure: I will be going back to school.

As Porter gets to know his new classmates, his new school and his teacher, I will be taking Accounting 101 quite likely with college freshmen half my age.

I am excited and terrified for both of us.

As we were picking out crayons, glue sticks and a lunch box for Porter, I had to pick up a notebook, folder and new pens for myself. You see, by next summer, I hope to be starting a MBA program with a focus in Arts and Entertainment Management. However, before I make the big leap from BFA to MBA, I am taking a basic accounting course to sort of get my feet wet. This was suggested to me by a former colleague and I thought it was a good idea since my freshman year of college was spent taking courses like Color Theory and 2D Design–a very far cry from accounting. Like, REALLLLLY far. Very, very far far. Soooooo far.

Porter will be attending school just down the street. I will be taking class at the same university where I am a staff member–and last year at this time I was preparing to teach a freshmen course so this is quite a switch!

I’m excited that Porter will meet new kids and make new friends. I hope he likes school as much as I did.

I’m excited I am taking a small step toward something completely new. I’m excited to have a plan and a goal.

I can’t wait to exchange “first day of school” stories with my son and to help him with his homework as I do mine. I like that we are on this journey together.

Jul 28

The Speed of Life

Posted by Lori | Posted in AWESOME, big kid, life, milestone, twitter | Posted on 28-07-2014

Hey Friends!

Spring has turned into summer, summer has already turned into Back To School sales, and I have continued on my path of being a total slacker of a blogger. Wondering what has been going on with me and the family? Here is the short version:

- Porter turned 5 and had a Lego themed birthday party.

- We bought our dream house and moved in May. We love love LOVE it here! I will be removing wallpaper for the rest of my days, but man, we truly found our home!

- Miss Quinn turned 1 in June! We had a small party for her during which she discovered the wonders of cupcakes. She is 13 months now, has 12 teeth and has been cruising for two months. She is just now trying to stand unassisted. She says: Hi! and Hey! and Daddy!

- Aaron took the kids to Florida to spend time with his family while I headed to Connecticut to spend time with my brother and to attend a wedding. I have never spent that much time away from the kids before and it was both difficult and freeing. I did get to see lots of old friends that I haven’t seen since leaving CT so that was really great. Aaron got to spend time with both his sisters together (first time since ’07) and the kids got to meet some relatives they have never met! Aaron leveled up on the Parenting front, taking both kids on a plane by himself (Quinn’s first time.) It went well…except for Quinn puking all over Aaron on the flight home.

- Speaking of my better half, he has been home with the kids full-time this summer while I have been working. Seriously, he is earning all the Parenthood achievement badges this summer.

- This July we watched a fabulous July 4th parade, went to an amusement/water park, ran through the sprinkler, ate popsicles on the front porch swing, took walks through the neighborhood, and just enjoying being with each other.

- I’ve been working on making over Porter’s room. Theme? SPACE! If I get my act together, I may do a whole post about that here on the blog. Would that be something you would want to read about?

New things on our horizon?

- Porter starts Kindergarten at the end of August! Remember back in the day when this blog was about me being pregnant with him?! Yeah, me too. I can’t believe school days are already here for him.

- New things are in the works for me too, but I don’t want to say too much until details are solidified and all systems are GO. I’m excited about it, but I don’t want to get ahead of myself, so I will wait to tell you anything more.  No, I am not pregnant!

- Thinking about setting up a blog Twitter account again. What do you think — yea or nay?

Until next time, I leave you with Quinn’s 13 month photo:

13 months

 

Apr 22

Hey, remember that blog I use to write…

Posted by Lori | Posted in AWESOME, baby, big kid, kindergarten, life | Posted on 22-04-2014

Well hello there! Long time, no blog, huh? Yeah, my last post was January 4, 2014 so it has been a while. What have I been doing since then? Working full-time, taking care of the kids and just keeping the household plugging along. As I am sure you are aware, the winter was a long one. A stomach flu ripped through our home in February. Aaron left for two conferences in March leaving me solo parenting for nearly two weeks.

On the bright side, my wonderful, smart, hard-working husband was awarded tenure by the university. This means that Pittsburgh will now be our HOME. For so long, Aaron and I have moved from place to place for work (both together and during the years before we became a couple.) Now after nearly four years here, we can really put down some roots. We are buying a home and moving in mid-May. It really is our dream house and we are very excited to spend the rest of our years there. Porter is still wrapping his head around this moving business and just refers to the new house as “that house that I love.”

Speaking of Porter, would you believe he turned FIVE YEARS OLD last week?! And today I started filling out his Kindergarten registration paperwork! THIS IS CRAZINESS!

Miss Quinn just started crawling two weeks ago and her seventh tooth broke through today. She is 10.5 months now and loves to wave. She says “hi!” and waves at everyone and everything. She is all about table food and feeding herself. Her first table food was bacon (thanks, Aaron) and has pretty much wanted nothing to do with pureed food ever since. I should do a proper update on her. Will I? I don’t know.

photo 4

photo 5

So a lot of great stuff is happening over here and I have put blogging on the back burner so I can enjoy my kids and time with my husband. Maybe I will be better at this over the summer!

Jan 04

A New Year

Posted by Lori | Posted in family, life | Posted on 04-01-2014

Happy 2014!

I hope you and yours had a lovely holiday. As you well know, I didn’t post much in the later half of 2013–which a new baby and new jobs, I just didn’t have the energy for it. Quite frankly, I don’t know if I will have the energy for it in 2014 either. I’ve enjoyed writing this blog so much, but to be honest, there is really only so much one can say in five and a half years time. If I don’t feel like writing, I don’t. That’s the beauty of just blogging for a hobby and not for profit. I blog when I wanna.

Do you make New Year Resolutions? I usually do. I like the idea of a fresh start so I try to make the most of it. Last year, since I had a baby on the way and wanted to avoid PPD again at all costs, I kept my resolution as low-key as possible…so I didn’t make one. I just hoped to keep on keepin’ on. I just wanted to survive the year with my sanity and family in tact. I didn’t want to put too much pressure on myself. To my utter amazement, a lot of great things came my way and I decided to greet every opportunity with open arms. That meant that I did do a little “fake it ’til you make it” but in the end, I didn’t really have to fake anything. I just had to be confident in myself and my abilities. 2013 taught me not to worry about anything that wasn’t right in front of me. And even if it was right in front of me, I just had to calmly see it through. I think I did ok.

Somehow–even with all of our life changes, 2013 somehow felt simpler. I want to keep that going in 2014. I want to unclutter and simplify my life. With that in mind, I have brought an end to the blog Pinterest page and I will soon be deactivating the blog Twitter account. Both things I didn’t use much and didn’t get a whole lot from (having 100, 000+ Twitter followers does not mean 100, 000+  blog readers.) I am keeping the blog Facebook page though. I enjoy the interaction on that page very much. I seriously thought about pulling the plug on the blog, but I just can’t bring myself to do it quite yet. I do like writing here, even if I write as often as I use to. I have the driving urge to streamline and with the prospect of buying a house this spring/summer, I can’t wait to start purging, organizing and eventually nesting. I just want less extraneous stuff around me, know what I mean?

2014 will be another big year for us: Porter will turn 5 (!!!) and Quinn will turn 1. Aaron is up for tenure and if that goes well we will buy a house, which means another move for us. A move across town will be so much easier than a move from FL to PA!

What does 2014 hold for you? Do you make resolutions?

Nov 25

Long time, no see…

Posted by Lori | Posted in baby, big brother, family, infant, life, Me, milestone, post-pregnancy, post-pregnancy, Postpartum Depression, preschooler, siblings, sleep, work | Posted on 25-11-2013

Hi guys!

Sorry that is has been so long since I have posted. It has been a busy two months: adjusting to working full-time with two kids, husband turning in all of his stuff for tenure, lots of laundry. I have been focusing on family and work and that is pretty much it. It has been difficult to muster up the energy to blog since whenever I get a spare moment in the evening I choose to hang out with Aaron or sleep.

I know that I am two months behind on Quinn’s monthly updates, so here is a short overview:

Five Months

Five Months

  • Quinn’s first two teeth came in simultaneously just after she turned five months old. Her brother got his first tooth at 4.5 months, but that was only one tooth. Girlfriend is efficient and busted out two at once!
  • She is in size 9 month clothes and is growing fast.
  • She is in size 3 diapers and is about 18 lbs.
  • Quinn continues to be fascinated with her brother Porter. He loves to make her laugh and she thinks he is the funniest person in the world.
  • She is getting really good at grabbing things. And then throwing things. She also grabs my hair and tries to eat it.
  • Since she can roll around now, she prefers to sleep on her tummy.
  • She has had both rice cereal and oatmeal but isn’t really crazy about either of them. I still haven’t gotten her to eat more than a few bites. The teachers at daycare have better luck with that. But Porter wasn’t into baby food until six months so I am not really worried. She definitely is a good eater otherwise.
  • Little lady still does not consistently sleep through the night. On a related note: I’m tired.

The little man of the house…

Minding my P and Q

Minding my P and Q

  • Porter loves all things about the solar system. It is all he talks about right now.
  • He is slowly trying and liking new foods. Thank goodness!
  • He loves doting on his sister.
  • He understands that we will probably move next year in the late spring/early summer and has plenty of opinions on what our new house needs.
  • We still have issues with Porter not listening (happening at school too.) This started shortly after Quinn was born and about the time a lot of his friends at preschool left/changed schools. Don’t know if there is some sort of attention deficit issue or if this is just typical four year old boy behavior.
  • He loves maps and puzzles. He has a puzzle of the United States and knows in which states his relatives live.
  • Talking. About the solar system. So much talking.
  • He likes to sing along with songs on the radio and has strong opinions about what songs he likes or doesn’t like (totally gets that from me.)
  • Still working on his eye sight issues. He now has to wear his patch four hours a day (up from two.) Doctor says he isn’t making progress as quickly as he did in those first two months with the patch. The “lazy” eye also drifts now–a side effect of the patching. In a few months we will find out if he needs eye therapy.

And as for me, I’m really good. Postpartum depression is nowhere to be seen. I get about 6-7 hours of sleep a night. I still have about 10 lbs of baby weight to lose and I am guessing I am not going to really try to lose it during the holidays. I am liking my new job quite a bit and I love the class I am teaching. My life is very full and I am very happy! Is my house a mess? Sure. But my family is well-loved and well-fed and I am really enjoying each day I have with them. I feel very lucky for all that I have: a great husband, a full-time job doing something I love, two adorable kids. Yeah, more sleep would be nice, but I’m dealing without it!

Hope to go not so long between posts, but no guarantees! Thanks for reading!

Sep 10

Big Brother

Posted by Lori | Posted in amblyopia, baby, big brother, family, infant, preschooler, siblings | Posted on 10-09-2013

I realize that a Porter update is way, WAY overdue! Here is Big Brother himself holding Quinn when she was around 6 weeks old. He is beaming!

Porter’s life went through a lot of changes around the time Quinn was born. He started back in daycare full-time in mid-May, partially to give me a break when I was SO pregnant and partially to give him a solid routine and his own special place he can go to be with his friends. A place that is totally NOT about a new baby. On the day that I went into labor, Porter got fitted for his new glasses and got them just a week or so after Quinn was born. About a month after that, Porter started wearing an eye patch a few hours a day to help with his amblyopia. Dealing with a new kid in the house as well as new glasses and an eye patch is a lot for a four year old to handle, but for the most part he has been doing really well.

The first weekend home with both kids was probably the toughest for me and for Porter. Aaron had to go back to work less than a week after Quinn was born and so I spent the Saturday after she was born with both kids. Porter was a real handful that day. Lots of whining and uncooperativeness. I was tired and recovering and handling a newborn, so it was hard.

There have been some changes in Porter and I can’t tell if they are related to Quinn’s arrival or if they are happening just because he is a four year old and these are just some sort of phases he is going through. He has gotten more defiant and straight up ignores us when we tell him to do something. It is so bad sometimes that I wonder if this is some sort of attention deficit issue or possibly a hearing issue. His teachers tell us there has been instances of him not listening to them at school as well. I’m really hoping he will just grow out of this.

 Another thing we are dealing with is trying to get Porter to play quietly. Yes, this is a very tall order for a very vocal and imaginative four year old boy. It seems that Porter chooses to play loudly right at the bottom of the stairs right as Quinn is going down for a nap. This wouldn’t be a problem if Quinn’s room had a door…and a full fourth wall, but it doesn’t. Her room is open to the stairway, so any noise that Porter makes (and he makes lots of the noise) wakes her up. And we would put her in our bedroom, but our bedroom has a bi-fold door–those slatted doors that are usually found on closets–that is pretty terrible for noise reduction. Often times we tell Porter to go play in his room if he wants to be loud. Sometimes he is ok with this, but other times he gets mad at us. I feel bad about this because I feel like I tell him to go to his room to play a lot, but Quinn also needs to sleep so it is a tough battle. Hopefully we will be able to buy a house next year where every bedroom will have proper walls and a door and this won’t be a problem!

Beyond a shadow of a doubt, Porter loves his sister. He loves showing her off to everyone at preschool. “This is my sister baby Quinn!” he tells everyone. Its adorable. And he loves baby talk to her and she loves to watch every move he makes. To Quinn, Porter is always the most fascinating thing in the room!

Seeing them admire each other fills my heart with so many emotions that I can’t possibly describe them properly. I tear up just thinking about it. I know it won’t always be like this, so I am trying to enjoy every moment of their sweet sibling discoveries.

Sep 09

Quinn’s 3 month update!

Posted by Lori | Posted in baby, baby stuff, daycare, family, infant, milestone, siblings, work | Posted on 09-09-2013

Yes, I have not posted since last month’s update–but we are in a stage of transition here. I start a brand-new full-time job next week, I’m teaching a college course and Aaron is hard at work getting items ready to present for tenure this semester. We are busy! But I did want to carve out some time to make a 3 month update for you so you can see how Quinn is growing.

3 months

3 months

What Quinn is Wearing:

  • Size 2 diapers
  • A few 3-6 month sized things still fit, but she is gradually moving on to size 6 months–she is growing so fast!
  • Still shoeless. I can’t even keep socks on her. She is always kicking them off!

What Quinn is Eating:

  • Still formula. Four to five ounces per feeding.

What Quinn is Saying:

  • Girlfriend likes to talk a lot! She is always babbling, especially after diaper changes.
  • Sometimes she tries to talk to me while she is eating, bottle still in her mouth. The formula runs all down her chin but she doesn’t care–she has important information to share!

What Quinn Likes These Days:

  • Still likes having her hair combed and brushed.
  • Loves her playmat.
  • Likes trying eat or chew everything. Teething probably isn’t too far off.
  • She actually smiles when I put her in the carseat now!
  • Quinn really likes watching her big brother. She finds him fascinating!
  • She seems to be growing fonder of the pacifier.

What Quinn Doesn’t Like These Days:

  • Still doesn’t like baths. At all.
  • If she is in the car or in the cart at the store, she definitely does not like stopping. This makes shopping a bit challenging!
  • She no longer likes being swaddled. She likes having her arms free so she can suck on her hands.
  • She still doesn’t like tummy time, but she is getting better at it even though she doesn’t like it.
  • She really doesn’t like the sun in her eyes (but who does?)

What Quinn is Doing:

  • Quinn is going to daycare one day a week and will start full-time next week. It is going well and I didn’t even cry when we dropped her off the first day! I may cry when she starts going every weekday, though…
  • Quinn can grab and swat at toys so she really likes playing in her bouncer and on her playmat.
  • Quinn likes to kick too so I make sure there at hanging toys on her playmat that jingle. She likes to kick this one particular jingly owl quite a bit!
  • As of today, Quinn can sit in a Bumbo seat for a few minutes at a time.
  • She is tolerating the Moby wrap. I got her in it and settled for all of five minutes–which is much better than our previously tries during the last few months!
  • Quinn occasionally sleeps through the night. Maybe one or two times a week.
  • Quinn had her first cold and got over it rather quickly. She was only stuffy for a day or two.
  • Smiling. Quinn is a happy baby! So different from just a month or two ago when all she did was furrow her brow at us.

What We Are Working On:

  • Eating, sleeping, growing.
  • Sleeping through the night every night–not just once or twice a week. Honestly, we aren’t “working” on this–I am just hoping this happens soon!
  • Preparing her (more like “preparing me”) for daycare five days a week.
  • Tummy time.

I can’t believe how fast the first three months flew by. I got very emotional today thinking about how fast she is growing up, knowing that she is our last baby. I wish I could remember these days forever!

Aug 13

Quinn’s 2 month update!

Posted by Lori | Posted in baby, baby stuff, family, infant, milestone, siblings | Posted on 13-08-2013

2 months

2 months

Yes, our little lady is all ready two months old! And yes, I still haven’t completed her birth story or told you how Porter is adjusting, but I will get to it…sooner or later.  More like later…

At her two month well checkup on Friday, we learned that Quinn is 13lbs 10oz, 23.75 inches long. She is over the 90 percentile for everything across the board. So different from her brother who has always been in the average range growth-wise.

What Quinn is Wearing:

  • Still in size 1 diapers but that won’t last long.
  • She is wearing size 3-6 month clothes. Straight size 3 months won’t do–she is just growing so fast!
  • Feet are still too small for shoes.

What Quinn is Eating:

  • Formula and delicious gas drops.

What Quinn is Saying:

  • WE ALL HEARD QUINN LAUGH FOR THE FIRST TIME TODAY!
  • She isn’t talking, of course, but Quinn is very vocal–lots of cooing, grunts, squeaks.

What Quinn Likes These Days:

  • She likes her hair brushed and her head rubbed.
  • She likes being gently bounced on your knee.
  • She likes sitting in the bouncer with us at dinner.
  • She likes just hanging out with me on my lap, face to face.
  • She likes observing her brother. She finds him incredibly fascinating.
  • She likes sucking on our shirts if we are holding her close. She also sucks on her fist quite a bit. Can’t seem to figure out the thumb sucking thing quite yet.

What Quinn Doesn’t Like These Days:

  • The volunteer fire department call siren. It sounds like an air-raid horn. Quinn HATES it.
  • Quinn doesn’t like when the car stops moving. Or slows down.
  • Same as above but substitute shopping cart for car.
  • Baths. She HATES baths.
  • Tummy time.
  • Gas.

What is Quinn Doing:

  • Growing. A LOT.
  • She has more head/neck control now.
  • She has started sleeping through the night! Twice this week. Hoping this become the norm!
  • She hates Tummy Time so much that she pushes herself over, from tummy to back! She doesn’t do it every time, but she has done it quite a bit. We told the doctor about it and our doctor tested our theory–and Quinn flipped onto her back right there on the examining table.
  • She is smiling at us. I love it when we go to pick her up from her crib in the morning or after a nap and she smiles up at us!
  • She looks at us very closely, studying our faces and expressions.
  • Quinn makes a lot of facial expressions (definitely gets that from me.)

What We Are Working On:

  • The usual baby stuff: eating, sleeping, dirtying diapers.
  • Tummy time.
  • Getting use to baths.

Want to see how Month 2 compares to Month 1? Click HERE.