Kennedy | 5 Months

5 months old? How did this happen? How did we make it to this point? There have so many times that I thought we’d never survive the early newborn days and yet it seems unbelievable that it’s already been 5 months since our little princess joined our family.

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It’s funny to me how different Kennedy is from her brother. I know they are 2 different people, but they really couldn’t be more opposite. When Maverick was little, he was easy-going. He would sleep anywhere, loved to eat & was just so happy. Kennedy on the other hand is a little more particular.

When she’s tired, she’s screaming, but she can’t sleep just anywhere. She needs to be in her room, with her white noise machine & preferably held with a pacifier or nursing. When it comes time to eat, she can’t have any distractions– no TV, no brother running around & definitely no talking. Sometimes she even gets really picky and likes to have her feet positioned just so on top of my arm. I wish I was kidding, but I’m not. Girl just knows what she likes and really, I can’t blame her.

Overall she is a happy baby. She wakes up smiling in the morning and as long as she isn’t overly tired or hungry, she’s happy to play. If she had her pick though, she’d prefer to be held and walked around so she can take in the world around her.

This month Kennedy has really started teething though. It’s obvious she is cutting her 2 bottom teeth, as they are just below the gums, but haven’t broken through yet. Poor girl has all the classic teething symptoms too–constant drool, diarrhea, fussiness & chewing on everything. I have given her Tylenol a couple of times, but it hasn’t seemed to help much. Her favorite forms of relief are her pacifier and sucking on receiving blankets.

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Weight: 13 lbs. 7 oz.

Height: Unknown

Currently Wearing: 3-6 months clothes–if the outfit has feet, like her pajamas it has to be 6 months, otherwise they are too short. I think she might be taller than her brother!

Hair Color: Dark brown & getting thicker

Eye Color: Dark brown and eyelashes for days

Likes: Chewing on her hands, her Daddy (he is her favorite!), sucking on receiving blankets, playing in her Exersaucer, playing with Daddy & brother & being walked around so she can see the world

Dislikes: Naps, being left alone, tummy time, getting dressed & teething

Milestones: Kennedy can roll from her belly to back, with a little bit of help, but she hasn’t mastered back to belly yet–probably because she HATES being her on belly. She will put weight on her feet if you stand her up & she is reaching and grabbing for anything in sight. We have started to implement the “Baby Radius” at the dinner table because she isn’t afraid to grab food or utensils right off the plate. She has also started to grab at Maverick’s ears if he is close enough and it’s creating quite an issue because he wants to do it back to her. She loves to coo and is trying hard to sit up. If you lay her down & she doesn’t want to be laid down she will lift her head & legs up, making a little V and try to get up herself.

Favorite Food(s): Mommy’s milk still

Sleeping: I don’t think I’ve ever been so exhausted in my whole life. Kennedy is the worst sleeper…EVER! We’ve done every sleep training, self-soothing, comforting technique we can find. We’ve rocked, walked, bounced, swung & drove her. She’s been swaddled, partially swaddled and not swaddled. We’ve purchased blackout curtains & white noise machines. You name it, we’ve tried it. She goes to bed every night at 7 PM, only to wake up again within a couple of hours and from there she’s up every hour to two hours until her day starts at 7 AM. Naps–if we can even get her down for one–are considered a success if she sleeps for an hour. I’m praying this gets better soon. It has to, right? Because Kennedy, momma is so very tired.

Favorite Mommy Moment: When she wakes up in the morning, she plays in her crib until I come in to get her. As soon as Kennedy sees me, she flaps her arms really big and has the best smile & when I pick her up, she reaches out & grabs my face like she’s trying to give me a hug. She usually ends up pulling my hair, but it’s still the best moment of my day. It’s as if she is saying, “Good morning Mommy” and I love it! She’s so happy when she wakes up.

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Happy 5 Months, Miss Kennedy Joy! We love you xoxo

xoxo

Kennedy | 4 Months

One of these days I will get Kennedy’s monthly update posted on time, but not this time. I’m so sorry baby girl! Mommy loves you, but goodness, you and your brother are keeping me busy.

Anyways, on May 28, Miss Kennedy turned 4 months old!

 

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As you probably know, the last 3 months have been rough. The first 2 months of Kennedy’s life were nothing short of a nightmare with the constant screaming and month 3, she spent recovering from her lip & tongue revisions. But thankfully, all of that is behind us now, and we are finally getting to see what a happy little girl our Kennedy is!

She hardly cries (which is a drastic change from screaming 20 hours a day), unless she is hungry, tired or feeling left out. Girl has a serious case of FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). She is so curious and always wants to be in the middle of the action. When we are out somewhere, she needs to be held so she can see what is happening and she is constantly looking everywhere to take in all the sights & sounds. People always comment on how alert she is and it’s simply because she has to know what is happening. I can’t blame her, because I’m the same way. Shawn would say we are nosy, but really we are just curious creatures.

Kennedy is also starting to recognize familiar faces. She knows my mom and has become really comfortable with her. She also ADORES Maverick. It doesn’t matter what she is doing, if Maverick walks in the room or even makes the tiniest of sounds, Kennedy is observing his every move. It’s so cute, but also creating quite a problem when it comes to nursing her because of how easily distracted she is. Plus, Maverick isn’t quiet (ever), but he is slowly learning that when Sissy is eating we need to not be running around the house with the corn-popper.

Overall though, Maverick is doing an exceptional job being a big brother. If she’s upset, he will put her pacifier in for her. He isn’t the best at sharing toys and she is NOT allowed to touch his blanket at all, but he is always more than willing to cover her in slobbery kisses and full body hugs. Recently he has started to try and share his snacks with her, which is kind of scary because of the whole choking hazard thing, but we are working on it.

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Weight: 13 lbs. 5 oz.

Height: 24 and 1/2 inches long

Currently Wearing: Still in 3 months clothes, but they are getting really tight & her sleepers are too short. It’s definitely time to do some 6-month clothes shopping!

Hair Color: Dark brown & getting darker like Mommy’s

Eye Color: Dark brown like Mommy’s

Likes: Chewing on her hands, her pacifier, Maverick, Grammi, being apart of the action, playing outside & her play mat

Dislikes: Her carseat, hair bows, getting dressed, feeling left out & tummy time

Milestones: She is officially smiling at all times and she is SO close to rolling over. She can get on her side, but then just stops. It’s going to happen soon though! Kennedy is also starting to cut some teeth. She is constantly chewing on her hands and drooling. She’s holding her head up without any support now and is reaching & grabbing for items. She can take her pacifier out and almost put it back in her mouth (but usually ends up hitting herself in the nose). She’s also cooing & babbling all the time, but she’s only laughed for her Daddy, which I don’t blame her. He is pretty silly.

Favorite Food(s): Mommy’s milk–although she will make chewing motions with her mouth when she sees someone else eating so we are getting closer to trying some baby food soon!

Sleeping: Worst. Sleeper. Ever. We are definitely in the trenches of the 4-month sleep regression. She’s up every 1-2 hours at night and really only naps during the day if in the car or being held. Mommy & Daddy are so very tired.

Favorite Mommy Moment: Can I be completely honest here? I feel like this is the first month that I’m actually getting to bond with my daughter. The first 3 months were so hard and now that she is feeling better & truly acting herself, we are finally getting to build a relationship. I absolutely love that when she wakes up in the morning, she’s full of smiles. She’s a sweetheart and a definite Momma’s girl. I’m just really loving this month (even with the no sleep part) because I’m finally getting to enjoy my daughter.

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Happy 4 months baby girl. We love you so much!

xoxo

 

Day Out With Thomas 2017

Maverick is obsessed with all things that have wheels–cars, trucks, motorcycles, bikes & especially trains. So when I found out that the Midway Railway was hosting a Day Out With Thomas, I knew it was a family outing we had to do.

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From our house, the Midway Railway is about an hour away. We figured we could leave first thing in the morning, ride Thomas the Train, do ALL the activities and be back on the road by nap time. In theory, it was a really great plan.

We hadn’t told Maverick that we were going (mainly because I didn’t want to listen to him asking 800 times an hour all day, every day leading up to it), so when we woke him up that morning, we just told him that we had a special day planned. Lucky for us, he’s still at the age where he doesn’t question where we are going when we get in the car. Plus, he was totally content with an hour long drive, thanks to some QT donuts!

Baldwin City was a great host to Day Out With Thomas. They have clearly been doing this awhile because as soon as you pulled into town, there were signs everywhere directing you to the free parking lots. I had read online that shuttle buses ran every 10 minutes to take to you the railway. Now, I’m one of those people who don’t like to feel rushed. It makes me anxious and as luck would have it, the second we parked, the bus pulled up to take us to the railway. Since we hadn’t even gotten out of the car yet, Shawn & I were scrambling to get everything & everyone together and we were hot messes. I still don’t know why we didn’t just tell the bus to go ahead & wait for the next one, but we didn’t & in the mad dash, we left behind necessities–snacks, water cups, Maverick’s hat, sunscreen–but we made it on the bus.

Maverick still had NO idea what was happening, but he was so excited to be riding a school bus. I mean, really, we could of just skipped the whole Thomas part & rode the bus all day and he would have been just fine.

Anyways, we pulled up to the railway and after unloading, we told Maverick that we were going to go ride Thomas the Train. Shawn was recording Mav’s reaction on his phone in hopes of having the next viral video and of course, Maverick responded with, “Okay.” Kids, I swear.

Rushing to get on the bus, threw us off and when we entered the railway, the announcer was calling to “board Thomas” so of course, we ran to get in line. We were hoping to get one of the open cars, but they were full so we settled for a closed car. We boarded our train car & the whole thing was decked out in Thomas the Train decorations–complete with the Thomas soundtrack playing. At this point, Maverick’s excitement kicked in and thank God, because it was 100 million degrees inside that old train car & I was going to be really pissed if he wasn’t LOVING every minute.

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As we were waiting for the “All Aboard,” Percy passed us on the railroad.

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Maverick loved waving to Percy & the passengers on the train. We didn’t get tickets to ride Percy too, but I think in the future, we definitely will.

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While we sat there & I collected my nerves, Shawn looked at me and goes, “What time is our ticket for again?” I said, “11, why?” When we purchased our tickets, you have to select a train departure time. Shawn looked at me and said, “It’s only 10. We are on the wrong train!”

At this point, I couldn’t help but laugh. Our perfectly planned morning had been nothing short of a disaster & we hadn’t even left the train station yet! We had been running around, forgetting things, hustling the children about & we were a whole hour early! I was just praying that nobody would notice because over my dead body was I going to drag my train-loving 2-year-old off that train without it leaving. Can you imagine the meltdown?! Thankfully, nobody noticed (or cared).

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The train ride was 30 minutes long & on the way back, we had to help Thomas get back to the station by yelling “Pull Thomas Pull.” All the children were rewarded a Junior Conductor Certificate for helping and clearly Maverick was VERY pleased with himself.

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He’s excited, I promise.

After we got off the train (and saw everyone lining up for the 11:00 train…oops!), we got to enjoy all of the activities. They had train tables for kids to play with, a petting zoo, train cars to play on & a movie area to watch Thomas the Train. Maverick was most interested in playing at the train tables & watching the movie. Shawn did take him to meet Sir Topham Hatt though.

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I snapped this picture seconds before Maverick realized who was next to them and started screaming. He was terrified of Sir Topham Hatt. Poor guy!

We ended the day in the gift shop tent, because of course, we had to buy another train while we were there. While I walked around with Kennedy, Shawn patiently waited with Maverick while he examined EVERY train they sold before settling on Connor–who he calls Thomas.

The bus took us back to our car and our already cluster of a day ended with me nearly breaking my ankle by taking the short cut to the car through the uneven grassy terrain. I was fine, but it was really the icing on the cake. Now I can laugh about the whole day & really the main thing is that Maverick had no idea that most everything went wrong & Shawn and I are MUCH better prepared for next year.

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Kennedy | 3 Months

It’s been a week and half since Kennedy turned 3 months old and every day I’m continually amazed at how much she is growing and changing.

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It is obvious she is feeling 100 times better since having her lip & tongue ties released and her little personality is finally starting to show through. As much as it pains me to admit it, Kennedy is my mini-me. She is feisty, loud & she knows exactly what she wants, when she wants it and how she wants it. She’s particular in how she gets put to sleep, how she nurses & how she’s held.

Kennedy is also starting to coo and smile, although she’s yet to smile for the camera. She’s most likely to flash her toothless grin when she’s being talked to and when she is nursing. It’s my absolute favorite when she unlatches in the middle of a feeding simply to coo and smile at me before re-latching. It melts my heart every single time.

She also adores her brother. She watches Maverick all the time and if he isn’t in the room, she’s scanning the area for his voice. Maverick has been so sweet to her. He brings her toys, blankets & is always wanting to give her hugs & kisses. She’s trying so hard to roll over and reach for toys and I think it’s because she’s itching to be able to play with him.

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Weight: 12 lbs. 12 oz.

Height: Unknown

Currently Wearing: 3 month clothes

Hair Color: Dark brown

Eye Color: Light brown 

Likes: Sitting up, naps on Momma, being carried in her Tula, watching Maverick play, nursing & baths

Dislikes: The carseat, being left alone, naps in her crib, wet diapers & being too cold or too hot

Milestones: Bringing her hands to her mouth, cooing, smiling, trying to roll over, kicking her feet & tracking objects and/or people with her eyes

Favorite food(s): Momma’s milk

Sleeping: Inconsistently naps throughout the day if in the car or being held, goes to bed between 8-8:30 PM and wakes up at 1 AM, 4 AM, 5 AM and finally at 7 AM. In other words, not the best sleeper.

Favorite Mommy Moment: While nursing, she unlatches to coo and smile at me. Sometimes she will hold a 5-minute long “conversation” with me before re-latching to finish eating. It’s the best thing in the whole world.

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Happy 3 months, Kennedy! Momma loves you xoxo

Trusting My Gut

So remember when I said that Kennedy has been nothing short of a nightmare? We tried the acid reflux medicine and it did help…until it didn’t anymore. The last couple of weeks Kennedy has reverted back to being an absolute disaster and I am seriously at my wit’s end.

I can handle a crying baby. I get that babies cry. This isn’t my first rodeo here. But what she does is so much more than just crying. It’s an ear-piercing scream. She screams so hard and so loud that she literally turns red. Her whole body tenses up and her little fists are clenched so tight her knuckles turn white. She’s impossible to calm down and when she does stop screaming, it’s usually because she has screamed herself to sleep. After an hour, she’s up again, screaming.

It’s painful to listen to, it’s painful to watch and it’s draining me of what little sanity I have left. Not to mention, breastfeeding has become a battle all its own. I breastfed Maverick for a year, no problems, and felt confident I knew how to do it with Kennedy too. But every single feeding, I have to fight her to eat. She’ll latch on, but within minutes of starting to nurse, she unlatches, arches away from me and starts to scream. This goes on throughout the entire feeding and it’s exhausting.

I’ve been debating whether or not I should just give up and wean her, but my intuition has been yelling at me that something bigger is going on here. So yesterday after some soul-searching (i.e, having a complete breakdown and a good cry), I listened to my gut and called a pediatric chiropractor. I don’t know why, considering I have never been to a chiropractor myself, but something told me this is what needed to happen and luckily, I had a referral from fellow blogger friend.

The chiropractor got me in for a same day appointment (thank you Jesus!) and within minutes of talking to her and describing what was happening, she asked if she could watch Kennedy nurse. I whipped my boob out without hesitation, desperate for someone else–especially another nursing mom–to witness this nightmare. And without fail, Kennedy latched, suckled, unlatched and the screaming battle began.

The chiropractor recommended a pediatric dentist to access Kennedy for a lip & tongue tie. I left her office feeling very unsure of the whole thing, so I called my Lactation Consultant. Now, why I didn’t call them before all of this is besides me. Let’s chalk it up to exhaustion, okay? Anyways, I had to leave a message, but by the time I got home my gut was once again yelling to just call the dentist.

So I did and guess what? They suddenly had an opening for today, so I took it, and within minutes of getting off the phone with them, my Lactation Consultant called me back and confirmed that yes, it sounds like we are dealing with a lip & tongue tie.

But my intuition wasn’t done yelling at me yet. I wasn’t comfortable with the idea of clipping the tie, but I had this nagging feeling that I needed to ask fellow moms and what better way to do that than Facebook? So I posted a status and guess what, moms that I know had AMAZING things to say about the same dentist I was referred to and the procedure in general.

In less than 24 hours, I had seen a pediatric chiropractor, spoke with Lactation, made a next-day appointment with one of the most respected pediatric dentists in the Kansas City area and got confirmation from fellow mothers that this is the right move. And you know what, my intuition that had been screaming at me all day suddenly quieted.

I’ve been a wreck for the last 2 months. I am beyond exhausted. I am cried out. I have spent endless days trying every trick in the book to calm my daughter. I am literally at my wit’s end with nothing left to give, yet today I feel more at peace than I have since we welcomed Kennedy into this world and I truly believe it’s because I trusted my gut.

We’ll see what happens today at the dentist, but if I listen to my intuition, I think this is it. I think this is the answer to my prayers. Wish us luck!

 

Life as a Stay-At-Home Mom

It’s been a month since I walked away from my well-paying & comfortable corporate job to stay home and raise my toddler.

The past 31 days have not only been some of the best days I’ve had in a long time, but they have also been some of my most challenging & exhausting days. I thought running a week-long national meeting for 200+ employees in Las Vegas was tough, but it doesn’t hold a candle to having a 1-year-old test your willpower 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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Favorite perk of my new job? Afternoon couch snuggles.

Fortunately, Mav and I have settled into a little bit of a routine. He’s accepted that I am actually the boss & I’ve come to terms with the fact that I am no June Clever. We are both meeting new friends, discovering some favorite hangouts and definitely enjoying our time together–that is when he isn’t in timeout & I’m not praying for a drink.

As the days go by, I continue to feel blessed that I get this opportunity to live out a dream Shawn & I have had since we found out we were going to be parents. At that time, the idea of staying home was far-fetched to say the least, but we made a checklist and over the course of nearly 2 years, we were able to make our dream a reality for our family. Sometimes “blessed” just seems inadequate.

And while it’s not always rainbows & kittens in my new line of work, I’ve certainly learned a lot in the last month:

  1. Waking up an hour before my son gets up really does make a difference in my day. Let’s just say time to enjoy HOT coffee–alone.
  2. Timeout works wonders.
  3. Those persistent headaches I battled for months on end weren’t pregnancy hormones, they were stress-related. Remove the stress (i.e., working mom with traveling husband stress) and the headaches have completely disappeared.
  4. Save the good snacks for when the kiddo is sleeping so you don’t have to share.
  5. Stay-at-home moms before Pinterest had it really rough.
  6. Teaching your child to help around the house is important, but know that emptying the dryer will now take approximately 4 hours longer than it should.
  7. My Tuesday is no different than my Saturday now. A weekend–what’s that?
  8. Leaving the house every day, even if just for a Sonic run, is necessary for our sanity.
  9. Budgeting is my new favorite hobby. Give me all the spreadsheets!!
  10. Don’t take your toddler to the library–more to come on that. Stay tuned!