Wednesday, July 31, 2013

More Water for Our Baby

This evening I took Carter to the splash pad at the park Ty and I run from.  While Ty ran, we played in the water.  I had never actually gone down into the playground area and didn't realize how many different places there were to play in the water.  The first area we went to had stair steps for the water to fall down.  Carter kicked his legs and splashed in the water with his hands.  He even smiled and giggled a little bit.
He's staring at the water spraying out.
His favorite area had holes water would spray out of randomly.  He loved it and would stare at the spurts of water.  We were sitting right by one of the holes water came out of.  He put his feet over the hole and would kick them around as water came out.  It must have felt good when it sprayed on his feet. 

There were lots of other kids there running around and playing in the water.  Carter loved watching them.  It was so much fun to see the joy in their smiles and to hear it in their laughs.  I was loving every moment, watching Carter play in the water and watch everything going on around him.  Ty finished running and came over.  He looked at the other kids and mentioned how much fun we would have at the splash pad next year.  I was enjoying the moment so much that the thought hadn't even crossed my mind, but it was so true.  It will be so much fun to watch Carter at the splash pad next year, walking around and splashing in the water!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Big 2-7

Yesterday I officially turned 27 years old.  Even though in my mind I turned 27 when Ty did otherwise I can't keep track of my age.  In my mom's mind I turn a year old in January when my older brother had his birthday.  Then it's easy to remember our ages because there are 2 years in between both my brothers and myself.  When I first moved to my new school a co-worker asked me how old I was.  I told her 25 and then later realized I was actually 24, oops!

Last year my birthday was absolutely amazing.  The day before was our gender reveal party and we found out we were having Carter, not Emma.  We had lots of family in town from the party and we all went to IHop for breakfast together.  That was all topped off by an evening swimming in a friend's pool and then feeling Carter kick for the first time on the way home.  It was a magical feeling.  So really how could this year top that?

I'll tell you how.  I got to spend the entire day with that sweet face!  The day started at 6:30 am, a bit earlier than I'd like, but when you wake up to Carter's face it's hard to complain.  I took Carter back to bed with me where we played and snuggled until he drifted off to sleep and I followed suit.  When we woke up from our nap we went out for a run. 

We got home, read some books, played for a while, Carter took a short nap while I showered and ate, and then we went up to school to work for a bit.  I had tutoring that evening so Ty came home straight from work.  He got Carter ready for bed and started the grill.  When I got home I was greeted by Carter laying on the floor straining for a sparkly gift bag.  The first thing I noticed when I looked at the bag was that instead of tissue paper Ty had used a burp cloth.  We had a delicious dinner and enjoyed a relaxing evening.

Since we didn't have time to go to dinner after tutoring due to Carter's bedtime, we went out to dinner tonight.  Ever since I've lived here Ty has taken me to my favorite sushi restaurant for my birthday.  Last year I didn't get to go due to the bebe, so it was nice to start the tradition up again.  Carter went with us and was very well behaved.
Every year we've taken a picture with the elephant statue in front of the restaurant.
Funny birthday related story for you.  On Saturday Ty got the mail and as he came in told me slightly dejected that all of the mail was for me (I had gotten quite a few birthday cards).  As he flipped through he said, oh wait I got something, quite excitedly.  He was then confused why my grandparents had sent him a birthday card.  He flipped back over to the envelope and realized he hadn't noticed the "s" in Mrs.!
The envelope that got Ty all excited.

My birthday wish this year?  For Baby #2 to be as sweet and perfect as our little man!

Monday, July 29, 2013

I Love My Bob!

One of our big decisions when we were registering was which stroller we wanted.  I planned to run with the stroller, so we knew we needed a good one.  We ended up picking the Bob Stroller Strides Fitness Stroller.  My amazing parents bought it for us, half for my birthday and half for Ty's birthday.  Every day I run with it I love it even more.   That's saying a lot because of the 391 miles I've run since Carter was born I've run all but 87 of them with the stroller, so I've logged roughly 300 miles with that bad boy!  I actually sat down and added it up today out of curiosity.

It has definitely proven how awesome it is over and over again.  The swivel wheel makes it easy to navigate, even for an upper body weakling like myself.  The all-terrain tires have gotten us through grass, over rocks, on gravel, no problem!  Last week was an especially trying week for the stroller.  We had a big storm Tuesday night which left limbs and parts of trees all over the trail we run on.  The stroller bounced over them with no problem.  Occasionally a stick would fly up and jam the front wheel, but all it did was slow me down for a moment.
Carter checking out the over-sized sun shade.

Friday was the real test.  There was a chance of rain all day long and I was hoping to get a 12 mile long run in.  I waited until later in the day because there was only a 30% chance of rain.  I took an umbrella and a bunjee cord to rig up to the stroller just in case it started raining.  We took off running with no rain so I figured I'd just stop to attach the umbrella if it started.

Then about 2 miles in it started to lightly drizzle off and on.  We got to the turn around and it started to rain a little bit harder.  By 7 miles it was full on raining.  I kept looking down at Carter and he didn't appear to be wet except for a few droplets on his feet and lower legs.  We went under a bridge and I stopped to check, sure enough his body was dry.  I dried off his feet and legs and we continued on.  Of course, I still worried about him getting wet and cold, but he was fine.
My dry baby fell asleep at 11.5 miles.  Really, all that time and you fall asleep half a mile from the finish!

It stopped raining 10 miles in and was done for the night, go figure.  When we finished I pulled Carter out half expecting his onesie to be soaked and I just couldn't see it, but nope he was totally dry!  I couldn't believe just the sun shade on the stroller had kept him dry.  When I pulled a completely dry Carter out of the stroller I fell a little bit more in love with it.  Man, I love my Bob!

I had a couple of hiccups last week which kept my weekly mileage from hitting 30.  One day I cut my run short to get home so I could transfer Carter's baby food to a friend's freezer since we lost power, more here.  Another day my run was cut short because we ran into a lost dog with a collar and rabies tag.  I was about a mile out from my car, so I caught the dog and walked it back to take it to the vet so they could find her owners.  That being said I was still pretty close.
Sweet dog we helped get home.  Notice Carter in the rearview mirror!

Last Week's Stats
Weekly Mileage: 29 miles
Long Run: 12 miles (at 9:05 pace with the stroller, my last mile was 8:28!!!)
Tempo Run: 3 miles at 7:55 pace

Linking up with Ashley for Move it Monday!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

What It's All About

All day I was kicking around the idea of taking Carter and Harper on a walk.  I went up to school to work while Carter took his afternoon nap and Ty poured concrete in our bathroom.  When I returned we played for a while and Carter started acting tired again so I decided to wait until he took a short nap to go on our walk, but little man never took a nap.  Finally a little before 6:00 I decided to go.  I had originally planned to take Carter in the stroller, but it was only 85 degrees and I wanted to snuggle my sweetie pie so I ended up wearing him.  We started off walking in the direction I normally run if I run from our house.  There are no sidewalks, minimal shade, and lots of loose dogs.  We ended up turning around when I saw some loose dogs ahead and went back home.

As we neared our house I remembered the sidewalk that was just poured which Carter and I use when we walk to the library.  We headed that way.  The temperature was perfect, the sun wasn't beating down, and there was a lovely breeze.  I was so happy and content.  Harper was loving it, running around in the grass, sniffing around.  Carter was watching Harper, cooing, and rubbing my back with his precious, little hand.
Ready to head out on a walk, Harper was too excited to look toward the camera.

I couldn't help but think, moments like this are what it's all about.  They remind me of what a wonderful life I have.  I have a husband who will go grocery shopping so I can take my dog and baby on a walk.  I have a dog who is moderately well-behaved and loves our baby dearly.  I have a baby who is generally happy and easy going.  Not to mention he only wakes once at night!  I can almost taste sleeping through the night.  I know it's on our horizon!

The entire time we walked I kept looking down at the most beautiful face I've ever seen in my life.  Memorizing his cheeks, his lips, all his baby features that will be gone before we know it.  Harper jerked on the leash as I was looking down at Carter.  With my heart full and everything seeming so simple, I pictured it.  Holding Carter's hand as he walks along beside me and another baby snuggled up to my body in the baby carrier.  Life seems so complete now.  Would it be more complete then?  Would it be even more complete with three?  Only time will tell.  For now Carter is everything I've ever dreamed of.  The soft cheeks pressed against mine.  The tiny hands wrapped around my hands.  Giggles filling the otherwise quiet home.  The smile that spreads across his face when I enter the room.  The greatest gift life has to offer.  I love my little man so much and can't believe how big he is getting!  
He looks so big all stretched out!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Carter Loves Books

When we moved Carter's furniture back into his room after the carpet was installed, I put all of his soft books on the bottom shelf.  I thought sometime soon he may get them off the shelf to play with them.  I had no idea how soon though!  Today he rolled over to the bookshelf and pulled a book down to play with.  Then he pulled 2 more books off.  I wish I had thought to take a video of him pulling them off, but I did get some good pictures!
Grabbing another book.

Last night he reached for a book that was on the floor which made me think it would be cute if he crawled toward a book when he first starts crawling.  After watching him roll all the way over to the book shelf to pull books off, I realize that's a real possibility.  Now when he starts asking me to read him books, that will be even more exciting!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Our Power Outage

Yesterday was a crazy day.  It all started around 1:30 am when Ty's phone made a hideously loud and scary noise.  When Ty gets woken up he cannot function and is disoriented and confused.  When I wake up I can function and usually can make sense of things within a few minutes.  That may come from previous experiences with Ty waking me up and asking me questions while he was sleep walking and now waking up multiple times a night to take care of Carter.
Getting woken up in the middle of the night isn't too bad when you walk in to this.
So Ty reached for his phone slapping around and acting like a crazy person.  His reaction scared me because I was convinced he must be fighting off an intruder with sweet ninja moves, but then I realized he was attempting to reach his phone to turn off the alarm.  While he did all that I laid there wondering why his phone made that weird noise and came to the conclusion that it must be his tornado alert he set up on his phone after we both slept through some serious weather that resulted in tornado sirens going off in a town about 10 miles from us.

When Ty was finished ninja chopping his phone I asked him if that was his tornado alert.  He groggily replied with, "There's a tornado?" which for some reason frustrated me so I told him, "I don't know, check."  We searched online and found a report of tornadic activity southeast of us.  Around that time I noticed it was really hot in the bedroom and Ty looked up and saw the ceiling fan wasn't moving.  We had lost power.

There was nothing we could do about it so we went back to sleep.  Carter woke up at 2:30 and I checked for power, it was still out.  At 4:00 Carter woke up again.  When I got up it seemed to be cooler than it had been so I checked again and the power was still out.  At this point I was getting really worried.  The week before I had just made a month's worth of baby food for Carter which was in the freezer.  I had also been pumping once a day to build up a stock pile before I go back to work.  I just couldn't deal with losing all of that!  6:30 came around and we still had no power.  I realized I needed to find a freezer for Carter's precious food.  I texted my co-teacher to see if she had power.  I didn't get a response.  Carter woke up around 8:00, I fed him, and we headed out for a run.

As we were taking off on our run I got a response from my co-teacher.  She had power and said I could put Carter's food in her freezer.  I cut my run short which was probably a good thing as there were branches and even a couple trees down across the trail.  Small branches would fly up in the front wheel and cause it to lock up.  I headed straight for Quiktrip to pick up ice.  The ice freezer was decimated, but I was able to get 2 bags.  I got home around 10:30 and was ecstatic because the food was still frozen.  I checked the thermometer in the freezer which was at 32 degrees so I decided to trash the milk.

Ty's work didn't have power either so they sent him home at noon.  He went for a run and got home around 2:00.  Finally around 2:30 in the afternoon our power came back on.  Luckily the high yesterday was 91 degrees instead of the 100 degrees it had been.

Now for the exciting news.  Carter slept through the night last night, 8pm-7am, all the way through!!!  I woke up at 7:00 and had to lay and think about it for a while.  Even when I realized he'd slept through the night, I still didn't quite believe it.  My random thought:
How cute would it be if Carter first crawled toward a book?!!?

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

We Have Teeth!

I've been thinking Carter was going to have his first teeth pop through for months now.  He's been slobbery and chewing on everything for at least 2 months.  Lately Sophie has been his favorite toy and he has been gnawing on her legs like crazy!  I check his gums every couple days to see if we've had any new developments.  The last few times I swore I could see white in the middle of his bottom gum, but I'd thought I'd seen it before, so I figured it was again a false alarm.
Going to town on his teething ring.
Yesterday I pulled his lip down and instantly let out a high pitched squeal which caused Carter to jump and give me an unappreciative look.  After months of checking and wondering, they had appeared.  Two ragged little bumps of teeth were just barely sticking up from his poor red gums.  I praised him multiple times for being such a big boy and having teeth.  He enjoyed the sweet words immensely, but I'm sure was confused about what he had done this time.

I was determined to get a picture of his teeth buds to send to Ty and Carter's grandparents.  I pulled his lip down with one hand and held my phone up with the other.  He would swat at and slap my phone.  When I finally did get a picture, his teeth were covered by his tongue which he was sticking out to attack my fingers in an attempt to release his lip.  I never got a good picture with my phone, but it wasn't due to lack of trying.  I did get a decent one with my camera though.

Monday both of his naps were a battle.  He was exhausted, but laid and screamed unless I patted his bottom and rubbed his back the entire time.  It took nearly 2 hours for him to fall asleep for his first nap.  Now I wonder if his poor little gums were hurting and that's why he struggled to sleep.  Poor little man didn't get any relief.  He sure did want his momma too, he wanted to be held all day.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Baby Sign Language

I'd been meaning to start using sign language with Carter and I kept forgetting to look up a chart showing the signs.  This weekend Ty's aunt and uncle came over to visit while his parents were here and his aunt asked if we'd been using sign language with Carter.  I was so glad she asked because it reminded me to look up some information!

I found a free printable chart here and an awesome website here where you click on the word and an animated baby shows you the sign.  Of course I also read articles and found research about baby sign language.  The reason why I want to do sign language is to allow Carter to communicate before he can actually say the words in order to minimize him feeling frustrated.  Most articles I read sited that very reason for using baby sign language.  Some even claimed sign language helps babies with language development.
Sweet boy, attentive, and ready to learn!

Yesterday I started using signs with Carter.  Were are going to keep it simple.  According to the articles I read, most babies won't sign back until around 8 months.  So I'm figuring a month or two of modeling the signs and helping him make them with his hands and he may begin using them.

When he woke up from a nap and first saw me I signed and said mom to him.  Anytime I was out of his view and he looked over and saw me, I signed and said mom.  He thought it was hilarious and would laugh every time I signed it.  As I was feeding him, each time I gave him a bite I signed and said food to him.  He watched me with interest, but was still all business when it came to eating!  When Ty got home I signed and said dad to Carter.  I explained to Ty how to do it and he enjoyed signing dad over and over to Carter.  He said he needed to catch up with how many times Carter had seen mom throughout the day.

The only other signs I plan to expose him to for now are more, drink, dog, all done, and bed.  The thought of Carter communicating with me in a way other than crying or reaching gets me so excited!  When I imagine him signing his first word, I get to dreaming about him talking.  That gets me daydreaming of him riding in his stroller talking to me while I run.  I look forward to those days, but for now I'm loving every aspect of who Carter is and wouldn't have life any other way.
Carter's favorite mode of communication right now is this strange screech/squealing.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Fall Half-Marathon, Here I Come!

Happy Monday, almost Tuesday!

I posted my running progress from 6 months postpartum here.  During my 6th month I set some goals for the upcoming month.  I hoped to get my weekly mileage up to 30 miles a week, my long run up to 12 miles, and to run a weekly tempo run at 8:00 minute/mile pace. 

I was able to meet all of those goals last week.  I logged 30 miles throughout the week, bumped my long run up to 12 miles, and ran a tempo run at just over 8 minute pace.  Granted, I'm starting out short and my tempo run was just 3 miles.  I plan to add a mile to my tempo run every other week or so and hopefully get up to an 8 mile tempo run.

With the encouragement of a blog friend I transitioned Carter straight into the stroller for runs rather than in his car seat.  I did all my runs last week with him sitting in the stroller.  I really missed getting to watch him the entire time, but he did really well.  The only disadvantage other than not being able to watch Carter is that he doesn't nap during runs anymore.
My new view while running.

I ran my 12 mile long run on Friday morning.  I have to admit I felt pretty B.A. that I was able to run 12 miles while pushing Carter in the stroller.  During our trip to St. Louis I went a week without running with Carter because someone was always around to watch him while I ran.  When we got back I was struggling to push the stroller.  I figured it would just take me a while to get back into the swing of things and get used to the stroller again.

Sunscreened up and ready for our long run.
Two weeks later I was still having a difficult time running with the stroller.  I finally realized the tires were low and needed to be aired up.  Ty took the stroller to the gas station, filled the tires up for me, and voila, I wasn't struggling anymore.  The opposite actually.  I would turn the corner with the usual amount of force and the next thing I knew the stroller would be off the path in the grass, whoops! 

I'm pumped to be where I am with my running.  I'm on track to run a decent half-marathon in the fall.  I'm glad to be where I am this early on too because finding the time to run is going to be difficult pretty soon.  School will start in just under a month and I know it will be difficult to keep my mileage up for the first few weeks and possibly even month.  I'm definitely not looking forward to a 5:30 am alarm every morning!  I'm getting excited to run a half-marathon and Ty's started his training as well.

Linking up with Ashley for Move it Monday!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Our Weekend with Grandma and Grandpa

Ty's parents always like to help us with home projects when they come to visit and we did a lot of that with the carpet demolition.  Moving all the furniture out, ripping up carpet, painting trim, and then moving all of the furniture back.  We also made sure Carter had plenty of cuddle and play time with his grandparents.
Hanging out with grandpa.
While the installers worked on our new carpet, Leina and I took Carter to the aquarium.  Leina sat in the back of the car to play with Carter.  As we were leaving the house I made sure she had her seatbelt on before I started driving.  I didn't check when we left the aquarium and a few blocks later she realized she had forgotten to put it on.  She said she was too busy holding Carter's hand!
At the aquarium with grandma.  Carter wore his crab onesie especially for the aquarium.
It amazes me how Carter interacts differently at the aquarium each time we go.  He enjoyed it even more yesterday than he has before.  When he saw an animal he was really interested in he would reach out and touch the glass by the fish.  He even tried to talk to the fish with his high-pitched screeching voice.
Good thing there was glass between Carter and the Green Moray!

Talking to a school of fish.
This morning Carter was sitting on my lap and we were getting ready to read a book when his grandma came in and laid down on the floor by us.  He looked up, saw her, lunged off my lap and rolled toward her on the floor.  I swear if she had been a little farther back he would have army crawled to her.  He sure wanted his grandma.  It was very sweet to see!  We look forward to our next visit with his grandparents!
Grandma and Carter wore matching shirts to Ty's alma mater.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Today Was the Day!

We got our new carpet installed.  Last night Ty's parents came to visit and helped us move furniture, rip out our existing carpet, and paint all of our trim.  It was a late night, but we got it all done.  This morning the installers came and made short work of it.
Leina scraping up glue while Rocky and Ty worked on the floor.
Poor Carter struggled last night due to sleeping in his Pack n Play.  He's now over the weight limit for the insert which turns it into a bassinet and he doesn't sleep very well all the way down in there.  Add in the noise of the shop vac going and it took over an hour for him to fall asleep.  Thankfully once he was asleep he was out!  We were up until 1am running the shop vac and he didn't wake up until 2am for his nighttime feeding.  Which is down to just one feeding per night right now, I hope it stays that way!
Our hallway stripped and ready for new carpet last night.
The installers arrived around 9:30am and quickly got to work.  Leina and I headed to the aquarium shortly after, returning around noon in time for Carter's afternoon nap, and they were almost finished.  They were gone by 1pm and I couldn't wait to kick off my flip flops and run my feet along our beautiful new carpet!  It felt just as amazing as I had expected and spent the rest of the night barefoot.  I'm even typing this post while sitting on the floor.
Harper modeling on our new carpet in the hallway, what a cute Vanna!
The most amazing thing about our carpet is being able to lay Carter on the floor to play.  Our old carpet was so disgusting and poorly installed, I never put Carter on the floor unless he was on a blanket and then worried he would roll off it.  Tonight I laid him right onto the carpet as we moved furniture back to where it belonged.  He loved the freedom to roll and scoot around on the floor and made his way from one side of his room to the other.  It was precious to see him reach down and run his fingers through the carpet.  I could tell he loved the way it felt on his hands.  Now I'm excited at the prospect of him crawling rather than worrying about him getting poked on an exposed tack strip or crawling through stains.
Carter enjoying his new found freedom to roam the floor!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

What I Love About 7 Months

Normally at bedtime I lay Carter down and he stays down.  If he cries we rub his back or pat his bottom, but avoid getting him back up at all costs.  Tonight he wasn't having any of it and screamed through the bottom pats and back rubs so I relented and got him up. 

As we were rocking he kept sliding down along my body until he was positioned perfectly so I could feel his heart beating on my stomach.  Of course feeling Carter through my stomach got me all sappy and thinking back to when he lived in my tummy and how much he has grown since then.  Slowly but surely my little man is growing up.

Seven months doesn't seem like a long time, but it definitely is when it accounts for the first months of life.  My precious boy has changed so much and is showing off his personality with a hint of attitude thrown in for good measure.  My mind drifted as we rocked and his eyes opened and closed slower and slower until they eventually remained closed and he drifted off to sleep.  As I sat staring down at my sleeping baby I couldn't help but think of all the reasons I love this age more than the last.
He's looking so big!  Notice Sophie wearing her seat belt.  :o)

Here are the top 10 reasons I love 7 months:

1. The laughing, oh man the laughing!  His first baby giggles have turned into real belly laughs.  Sometimes he laughs so hard he has to stop to catch his breath.

2. The diapers.  When I think back to his newborn days I remember all the clothing changes that resulted from him peeing out the side, top, through his diapers.  All the times I ended up with pee on my clothes, my skin, Carter's face, the wall, the rocking chair, everywhere.  Our boy had range!  Now it's very rare for Carter to potty during a diaper change and most of his clothing changes are due to spilled food or drool.

3. How alert he is.  I love watching him push up on his arms and swivel his head to look around.  He's always taking things in.  On our runs he stares at the sky and watches everything around him.  When we take Harper with us, he watches her and laughs.

4. His grip.  I remember when he first started holding onto things, I was so excited.  Now he sees something he wants and reaches for and grabs it.  Sometimes it's a toy, other times it's my nose or hair, Harper's tail, his own toes, or a paper that fell on the floor.

5. The fuzz that covers his head.  That's right, fuzz.  He doesn't quite have hair yet.  It reminds me of the fuzz that covers a baby elephant when they are young.  The best part is that it has a mind of it's own and doesn't lay down like it's supposed to, it sticks up in random places.  The brush has nothing on his fuzzy hair strands.

6. Bathtime.  Every month he loves the water even more.  He's not interested in any of his bath toys yet, but LOVES to splash.  He doesn't just splash with his legs, he also splashes with his arms.  Sitting next to the tub I end up with water droplets covering my clothes.

7. Cuddles.  I am one happy momma that Carter is still a snuggler.  He was a snuggler at birth and hasn't let up since.  Some days he gets fussy because, gosh darn it, he just wants to be held.  Having his body resting on mine with my lips resting on top of his head kissing him over and over and smelling his sweet baby smell, now that's divine.

8. The babbling.  Carter has definitely found his voice and uses it.  He loves the sound of his voice screeching.  Now if I do it back to him, his mouth instantly turns to a frown and wobbles while tears slowly build in his eyes until I speak sweetly to him.  Momma's got it, the screeching is only a good sound when it's his voice.

9. Baby food.  I love making it.  I love feeding him.  I love watching his mouth open wide when the spoon comes into view.  I love discovering his taste buds and figuring out what his favorite and not so favorite foods are.

10. The curiosity.  Anything new he has to have it to touch and to put in his mouth.  When he's sitting up if I set something beside him he reaches for it and sometimes topples over in his haste to check out this new thing he sees.

These are some of the many reasons why this month is the best one we've had with Carter.  I'm sure next month there will be a whole new list as he grows and changes even more. 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Random Picture Wednesday

Playing with his pinwheel outside before it got too hot.
Last night Carter slept all the way until 5 am!!!!  I woke up earlier than I have been lately and I felt so much more awake all day.  It's amazing what a difference it makes to sleep for more than 3 hours at a time!  I'd love for nights like last night to be the norm.  Tonight he only ate 3 ounces of food at dinner, so we'll see how he sleeps.
Carter and I picked out a special book for Ty to read in honor of Carter's great grandpa.
On Saturday we are getting new carpet installed.  I'm so excited!  We wanted to get new carpet before Carter starts really crawling around.  Our current carpet wasn't installed correctly and there are tack strips exposed in many places which means our poor little guy would be getting poked.  Plus the carpet is really cheap, stains easily, and is very thin.  In preparation Ty has been working to finish up the bathroom so he won't get dust all over our new carpet and I've started painting the trim on our doorways.
I love the view of his fat roll on the back of his leg.
I can't get enough pictures of Carter and Harper together.  I swear I take multiple every single day!  They are so cute together and Carter is obsessed with Harper.  She gets more used to him every single day and just lays there as he pulls her fur and kicks her in the side.  It makes me love her even more!  Everywhere we go, she follows and lays as close to Carter as she can get.
Harper shaking with Carter.
I'm still trying to get a video of Carter babbling "dada" for Ty.  He's not very consistent with doing it, but I have gotten some videos of him babbling.  I'm sure it's not too exciting for most people, but I giggle every time I hear him talk.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

How Much Can One Boy Eat?

I've never fed a baby before so I'm not really sure how much food Carter should be eating.  We've always just given him food as long as he seemed hungry up until we felt he'd had enough.  When he first started with solids he would eat less than an ounce.  Then he moved up to the whole 2 ounce container.  After a while he still seemed hungry after eating 2 ounces so we started feeding him 4 ounces.  Then we went up to 6 ounces, but he was still seeming hungry and still woke up twice at night to eat, oy vey!
More food!!!
Tonight I decided to keep feeding him as long as he opened his mouth for more food.  He ate 7.5 ounces and when we started on the next container, he spit the spoonful back out.  I'm interested to see how he sleeps tonight.  It would be nice to get back down to only one feeding at night before I go back to work. 

With the 100+ degree heat we will most likely have for the beginning of the school year, I won't be taking Carter on my runs after school.  Instead, I will have to get up at 5:30 am to get my run in before work.  Only one nighttime feeding would make that wake up time so much easier!  Obviously I'd love to sleep through the night, but I'm not going to get my hopes up.
It takes a lot of food to sustain thighs like these!

Anyone have comparisons on how much your baby ate/eats?  I don't want to overfeed Carter, but figure if he keeps eating he must be hungry...  According to my parents, I was quite the eater as a baby!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Running 6 Months Postpartum

I've been running with Carter for a long time!  Nine months in utero and now 6 months in the running stroller.  It's been a challenge at times and slow going at others, but it has been worth every moment!  I'm a bit late getting this posted since Carter's 7 month birthday was yesterday, but everything here reflects the first 6 months of running postpartum.

Before one of Carter's last races as a fetus, The Mustache Dash, at 30 weeks gestation.
Where I'm at 6 months postpartum:
  • Running 4-5 days a week, most weeks 5 days
  • Long run built up to 8 miles
  • Weekly mileage ranges from 10-15 miles (usually it's around 12)
  • Pushing the stroller plus Carter's 17.5 pounds and the 18 pounds of the car seat
  • Longest run with the stroller: 8 miles
  • Pace is still 9:00-9:30 per mile, but is faster without the stroller (8:30-9:00 sans stroller)
I'm still using the car seat adapter and leaving Carter in his car seat for runs.  Partly because I'm worried he'll bobble around too much just strapped into the stroller and partly because I love him facing me so I can watch him as we run.  I'm holding off until he can sit up on his own to strap him directly into the stroller.  That way I'll know he can support himself when we encounter bumpy terrain.  I strap him directly into the stroller when we walk, but he goes in the car seat when we run.
Such a sweet, little running buddy!
Goals for this month:
  • Build my mileage up to 30 miles per week (this past week I hit 25, so that shouldn't be too much of a stretch).
  • Get my long run up to 12 miles (I ran 10 miles without the stroller this past weekend and that got me even more excited for a fall half-marathon).
  • Start running weekly tempo runs at 8:00 pace, my goal half-marathon pace (We'll see how far I can run at that pace, I may need to adjust that goal)
The most important part of my plan is to get up to 12 miles by August so I can spend August-November maintaining my long run distance and then start working on my speed. 

Sunday, July 14, 2013

A Letter to Carter at 7 Months

You wouldn't keep your hands off the chalkboard, hence the messy letters!  Oops, I just noticed I wrote 18 inches instead of 28 inches!

Really, has it been 7 months?!  It’s hard to believe we’re another month closer to your first birthday.  I’ve gotten to spend the entire month at home with you and it has been amazing.  You have such a sweet disposition and I just can’t get over what a good baby you are.  I keep joking with your daddy that if we got paid a dollar each time someone told us what a good baby you are, we could buy a new car!

I have finally stopped worrying that you will stop breathing.  I no longer check on you constantly in your sleep.  I don’t freak out while you are on your activity gym, if I leave the room for 2 seconds, when I turn my back, while I go to the bathroom.  I now have faith that you are healthy and strong enough to sustain yourself without my constant watch.  You still love to sleep on your stomach and I’ve stopped going in and rolling you onto your back once you’ve fallen asleep.  I will admit I still go into your room to watch for the fall of your chest as you breathe and sometimes put my finger down by your nose to check for air if I can’t see that, but you know that probably will never end…

Last month you had become really vocal and I was really excited, but you are even more so now.  You love to hear your own voice and especially love to screech.  Every once in a while you will babble “dadadadadadadada” but for some reason only do it for me, so your daddy hasn’t gotten to hear it yet.  I’ve tried to record you doing it to send to him, but then you switch over to a different sound.

I thought by now you’d have a tooth, but we are still waiting on the first one to pop through.  You’ve been drooling and slobbery for months along with chewing on everything in sight, but no pearly whites to show for it.  I keep thinking any day now, but who really knows!  

You are getting even better at sitting up and can sit up for longer periods of time.  You still eventually topple over, especially if you see something interesting you want to reach for.  You even army crawled a short distance this month.  Go figure, you were going after your buddy, Harper.

Smiling at Harper
Speaking of Harper, you love her dearly!  She never fails to get a belly laugh out of you.  It’s so cute because she will bring you one of her toys and drop it for you to play with.  I watch closely to make sure it doesn’t end up in your mouth, ick!  Just today you would grab an arm of her frog toy and she would get another leg and play tug of war really gently with you.  You laughed the whole time.  It sure was precious!  I know you are only going to love her more as you get older!

Playing tug of war with Harper.
You are still waking up twice at night.  Once around midnight-1am and another time between 3-5am.  Usually the second time is 3:30 or so.  I keep reading I should let you cry one of those times because you should be able to sleep longer than that, but you eat quite a bit both times you wake up.  Plus I can’t sleep when you’re awake anyway, so I might as well go in to help you out.  Hopefully soon you’ll start only getting up once and then eventually sleep through the night, but I don’t mind right now, especially since I don’t have to get up super early for work!  

It’s been so nice being home with you because your naps are back on schedule.  You don’t sleep as well at daycare so when you go you don’t nap as well.  You are back to waking up around 7am, being awake for an hour and then taking an hour nap.  When you wake up you are usually awake for 2 hours and then take a 2 hour nap.  Your next awake time is 2-3 hours and then you take a shorter nap 30-45 minutes and are awake until we start your bedtime routine at 7pm.  You are asleep by 8-8:15 most nights, but occasionally don’t fall asleep until 9pm (that normally means you are overtired, either we started your bedtime routine too late or you skipped your last nap).     
You love your blocks!
Eating is still one of your favorite things!  You are even more interested in daddy and my food.  You try to reach for our plates and will grab food off them if they are too close.  We’ve still been doing rice cereal, fruit, or veggie for lunch and a fruit or vegetable for dinner.  The only new foods you’ve tried this month are prunes and zucchini.  So you’ve had sweet potatoes, squash, carrots, peas, green beans, apples, bananas, avocados, rice cereal, pears, peaches, prunes, and zucchini.  We still haven’t found anything you don’t like.  

You keep getting smarter and smarter!  You have figured out you can hook toys with your feet and lift your legs to bring your toy up to your hands.  You also reach for toys and knock them around to pull them toward you.  You like to scoot yourself around by pushing your feet against the ground and will roll around the floor to get to things.  Sometimes I worry you won’t crawl because you’ve found so many creative ways to get what you want without moving too much.

The ball your great grandma and grandpa got you is one of your favorite toys.  You love to reach for it, get your fingers in the holes, and swing it around.  It is one thing you will work pretty hard to get to.  Sophie is another favorite and you love all of your stuffed animals.  You also love reading and you grab onto the pages and turn them for me when we read.  When we are finished with a book you like to grab it and feel the cover.

Finally you have a decent amount of hair!  Some of it is darker brown and some of it is so blonde it looks white.  We joke that you have Uncle Paul hair because it is more like fuzz than hair and sticks straight up especially if it hasn’t been brushed.  There’s a picture of your Uncle Paul right after a bath where his hair is sticking straight up from his head and looks just like yours!

We went on our longest car ride this month to visit family in St. Louis.  You met lots of family members and they were all very impressed with you.  We also went to the zoo which was quite a bit of fun.  We were so busy!

We are transitioning away from using your car seat adapter with the stroller.  When we go on walks I put you straight into the stroller.  When we are running I worry you will bobble around too much, so I put you in your car seat.  I also love to watch you and it’s much harder to do when you are in the stroller.  I have to lift a flap to look at you, but then the sun shines down on your poor little head!  I’m going to miss you facing me on all my runs.  I love watching you as we go!

No doctor’s appointment this month so your daddy and I measured and weighed you.  You are up to 18 pounds, 8 ounces, whoa!  You are now 28 inches long.  I’m not sure how accurate those measurements are because that would mean you have gained a pound and three ounces and have only grown 3/10 of an inch.  Maybe you have just been chunking out this month!

You are now wearing size 3 diapers.  You are wearing 6 month and 9 month along with 6-9 month clothes.  Our favorite outfit this month was your striped romper.  The shorts of the romper are long enough to actually look like shorts and it just fits so well.  I love how collars look on you!  

Now you are reaching for things and people you want.  There were a few times when someone else was holding you and you reached for me.  You have also reached for daddy and for grammy.  You are constantly reaching for Harper.  You always want her!  It is such a great feeling when you want me and reach for me.  I look forward to you asking for me and giving me kisses.

Every month I think about how much more fun you are than the last month.  I get sad thinking of you getting older and changing, but then we reach the next milestone and I realize how much fun it is.  I don’t miss you being a baby at all because I love how you are now.  All laughing and smiling and reaching for your mommy!  I love you to the moon and back my chubby thighed snuggle bug!

Now on to daddy:

Sooooooo close to moving my little man! Right now you need some serious motivation (Harper) to move a few inches but you have done it! You are dominating your jumparoo every chance you get and loving it. You now spin around to play with the different toys. It’s great that it spins 360 degrees for that!

This month you have started reaching for people. Once while I was holding you, your mom walked by and you reached for her. The time you did it to me, I was changing you on the kitchen table (dumb, I know, we made a huge nasty mess) and you reached up and grabbed my collar bones. I leaned in a little farther and sure enough you put my hands around my neck! I loved that so much!! And then you kicked your diaper over smearing poo on your Grammy’s table cloth and while I was battling you for that diaper, you rolled over and peed on the table cloth! Good thing you and I are in good standing with her, she wasn’t mad at all!

I also want to mention how great you are in new surroundings, always so calm and easy going. Makes going places just you and I a lot easier! You are always so entertained with whatever you can get your hands on, always studying it. Makes me think you are going to be a tinker when you grow up, always working taking something apart and putting together!