Fun before the 4th

We had a fun morning at our city’s fun before the 4th parade! (Although, with the many obstacles this morning – potty, sunscreen, being a toddler, etc – it wasn’t looking like we were going to make it.)

But, thankfully, we beat the odds! And, Turns out, henry is a big fan of parades. He cheered, hollered, clapped and danced all morning. C got a hot dog and candy… obvious win! 

All in all, a great time!


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Father’s Day Weekend

We had a great Father’s Day weekend. On Friday, I had a post-birthday birthday celebration with my girlfriends, which was just lovely. Delicious food, wine & company. No complaints from this girl.

On Saturday, my bro was in town, so we all met for brunch (which took a RIDICULOUS amount of time). Since it was late once finished, we decided to put the kids down for their naps at my parents house and my bro, his gf, Mark and I went to the pool. HELLO, ADULT TIME! It was grand. The weather chose that one hour and a half to get all dark and moody, but whatever.

After pool time, we picked up the kiddos and brought them home, where we met my amazing MIL, who had volunteered to babysit the kids. MORE ADULT TIME. Marky and I went for some pretty amazing Nepalese food. It was so much fun. Then, we went to see Wonder Woman. I literally ate my popcorn and then passed out until the final 10 minutes. BUT, most importantly, the man of the hour enjoyed it.

On Sunday, after Mark slept in for the second day of the weekend, we went to the Lakefront Festival of the Arts with Mark’s dad and Step Mom. It was such a blast!

Unfortunately, hubby’s special weekend ended with a long night of working, but all in all, it was a great celebration of my amazing guy.

As for gifts, check out this awesome video we made for Mark! It’s an interview with the kiddos about their superhero, Dad (or “Dat” as Charlie says):​

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Sibling Chats

<Overheard this morning from the driver’s seat>

Henry: Blah blah blah blah blah blah

Charlie: One more time, Hemy. I no unnerstand you.

Hemy: blah blah.

Charlie: I just can’t talk to you right now. I goin’ to my new school to work out. But don’t worry a’cuz ‘grooooowwwwnnuups come back’ <sung to the tune of the Daniel Tiger song’>

<End Scene>

1 Whole Year

Here we go! The big 1 year old Hemy update. And, remember that last post? When I was getting all emotional on my buddy’s first day? Well, the day ended with only one tearful meltdown. It’s just crazy… life with my babies and wonderful husband is so great, but simultaneously so hard. It’s impossible to stay totally positive and on top of things and plain old grateful and not get bogged down by the chaos and shuffling and momming. Then, all of a sudden, you blink and your baby is 1 year old. <Cue tears>

Honestly, this past year has been wonderful and I’m so grateful to have a lifetime to continue getting to know my babies. Henry is just such a little dumpling. He’s wonderful and sweet and squishy and silly and just lovely.

Weight: Henry is a whopping 23 lbs, 6 oz… which I’m pretty sure is just about what he weighed at 10 months. He’s dropped to the 50th percentile for weight.

Height: Hem Hem is a tall little man, measuring in at 2′ 7.5″… aka 31.5″ – that’s 90th percentile, people. Dude be big.

Health Updates: Little man has been pretty darn healthy this year. He recently had a little cold, which was sad… but nothing too crazy. Last week, he seemed to be going through a mental leap. How do I know?

Boy was CRAZY. He legitimately spent a whole day trying to headbutt me and scratch my eyes out. Shit was crazy. He was just fussy and clingy, but simultaneously trying to knock me unconscious. Those were amazing mom days.

But, we came out on top and his leap is very apparent. Since his 3-4 day psycho spree, he’s returned to his normal overly loving, jolly little self AND has a handful of new tricks! I am also still standing, so a win all around.

Sleep: Hem Hem’s sleep has been pretty great; although, the past week or so, the boy has been FIGHTING his second nap. In fact, he’s currently fighting it. He’s sleeping from about 6:30p-6:30a, and napping about 3 hours in the am. Our schedule was crazy this past weekend, but typically he sleeps about an hour or two in the afternoons. And actually, his am nap went from 2-3 hours at the same time he started boycotting nap #2.

He’s quiet for the moment, so we’ll see what happens.

Clothes/Diapers (Sizes): Henry still wears 12m and 18m clothing and size FIVE diapers. As for shoes, boy has big old club feet. They don’t appreciate the stifling nature of shoes.

Diet: Little man continues to love eating. At 11 months, we introduced him to cow’s milk… once. Then again at around 11.5 months (and also almond milk). Now, we alternate between the two (and breastmilk). He loves them all, although I can’t tell if his tummy is going to love cow’s milk.

As for food, the kid can eat. His favorite foods are:

  • Panera chicken noodle soup
  • Eggs
  • Cheese
  • FRUIT (strawberries are probably #1)
  • Meat… such a protein lover.
  • Beans

As for dessert, let’s just say that both of his smash cakes were consumed by his sister.

Teeth: Henry has 8 teeth (4 on top, 4 on bottom). There’s a chance he has molars, but he’s so darn secretive. He won’t show me. If he doesn’t have them, he’s most definitely working on them. Kid is very drooly and constantly shoving things in his mouth.

Baby Gear Love: We found Henry’s Comotomo Teether so all is right with the world. His other favorites: his new TRACTOR (also a fave of C’s), his dump truck, his HAMMER! OMG, the kid loves his hammer. The hammer came with a toy that looks just like this.

Milestones/Firsts: Henry is just such a big boy. He says mama, dada, mo mo mo (MORE!!)…. that might be it. He signs more, waves hi/bye, and as of a couple days ago, claps like a little cutie pie.

As of TODAY, Henry stands up in his crib and as of maybe a week or two, stands up on just about everything else. It’s crazy… since his week of headbutting, his repertoire has expanded exponentially. He’s pulling himself up on everything, clapping, putting his ball into the hole of the truck as it’s supposed to be used, and so on. He’s just such a big boy.

He also does itsy bitsy spider… which is ADORABLE.

And plays with his pup pup.

Likes: Henry LOVES swimming and water in general. He’s a little fish. He also LOVES music. This morning he went from the ukulele to the piano and back 10 times. And he actually strums the guitar… as for the piano, he just bashes the shit out of the keys.

Henry LOVES his doggy. He literally feeds him every time he eats. He’ll give Toby the food right from his own mouth.

Henry is still very partial to mommy, but obviously love loves his dadadadada.

He’s also a big fan of his grandparents!

Hem Hem loves to be scared and tossed around. And he LOVES to rip out floor vents and bash them all over the place. Also enjoyable… throwing miscellaneous items down exposed floor vents.

Henry is a big fan of balls and bubbles.

I’m sure I’m missing a million things… hmmm… he loves cords and danger, per usual. OH! We got him a ball pit tunnel, which he LOVES.

Dislikes: Hem does not enjoy being put in bed when he doesn’t want to sleep (hence him currently crying). He does not like being passed to someone else from momma’s arms or seeing momma when he has decided he must be attached to the momma. He does not enjoy his sister hugging him SO tight around the neck and don’t even think about taking his toys from him.

He also LOATHES diaper changes.

Things I Don’t Want to Forget: I don’t want to forget any of it! He’s just such a little munch with such a funny little demeanor. He loves to laugh and play. He’s SO curious and inquisitive. He’s so sweet and gives the best hugs and snuggles.

I love his babble and oy. His clap. Something about seeing those two chubby paws slapping together like a seal… I just love it. And he’s so proud. It’s perfection.

The Fam Heads to NY

Photos from our first family trip to New York to visit Mark’s sister. SUCH a great trip! We went to the beach, we had a birthday to celebrate Henry and Audrey’s birthdays, we played, C had her first mani/pedi… fun was had by all!

 

 

The Birthday Party!

 

 

The Beach Day

 

Charlotte’s First Mani/Pedi

Mark & I even got to head to the city where we ran into TOM HANKS!! See how well I played it cool? Then, we saw Waitress, starring Sara Bareilles and ran into Cynthia Nixon!

Saying Our Goodbyes

Miscellaneous Pics from the Trip

 

 

 

Mornings

Mark’s company recently moved downtown, transforming his commute from 5 minutes to up to 50. That, in combo with how busy things have been, has made my life resemble single mother life a bit more (although still so far from it… single momma’s, I salute you! You are superheroes!).

Needless to say, the new status has influenced my mornings (and evenings) to look something like this…


Caption: wtf, baby??

The toddler can smell stress and has catnip-like reactions to anger. It’s just awesome.

BUT, I swear, this is a happy post.

On days like today (when I get over 6 hours of sleep – hello, world!!), our mornings leave me in a sea of glowy rainbows and unicorns.

Both kids were perfect. They listened, they laughed, they helped, they loved on their momma. It was splendid.

Charlie was playing on her bike while I strapped henry in the car seat. “Okay, Charlie… time for you to get in the car.” And now wait for it… she says, “okay mommy. I just put my bike away over here” and she parked her bike back where it belongs and walked over to get into the car.

After I dragged my chin off the floor, I hummed happily all the way to drop c off at school.

Amazing.

Magical.

The toddler gods were definitely smiling down on me this morning.

So today, instead of feeling like I want to crawl under my desk and hide, I’m happy and smiling and feeling grand.

My Hemy Boy is 1

Why does today feel like such an emotional roller coaster for me? I don’t remember being so emotionally distraught when Charlie turned 1, but for whatever reason, as happy as I am to celebrate my boy and his beautiful, beautiful life, today feels hard. F*** those momma hormones.

How has an entire year flown by? How is my baby not a baby anymore? Seriously, when did that happen? Excuse me while I curl up in a corner…

Anyway, I have so many updates. My guy is such a little man. I will do the more formal update – I swear I will – but for today, just random thoughts.

My Henry Morris is just the sweetest, most lovable, soft, porcelain, angelic, destructive, curious, rambunctious, snuggly, loving little man. To say that I feel lucky to know him and have him in my world sounds almost silly. Being that little guy’s momma is unworldly. To be the momma of he and Charlie is just the greatest honor.

Oy. I’m not emotional at all, huh? But seriously, Henry is amazing and I’m lucky. The End!

In terms of Henry… he LOVES to smash. He’s just SUCH a boy. He lifts up the floor vents (I didn’t even know that was possible) and smashes them on the ground, tries to shove them down the vent and throws miscellaneous items down there. He takes any and every opportunity to mess with the dog’s food and water bowl or the dog himself. He loves balls (ba ba ba) and trucks. And, most of all, he LOVES WATER. This boy is a fish. Actually, he’s like a little Moana… but instead of longing for the ocean, he’ll settle for a bath, pool or the dog’s water bowl. Splashing is his jam. He’ll dunk his face in and kick for days.

Henry is a total hugger. He loves his mommy.

Ugh, okay! That’s the end for now… gotta go make my little boo a special dinner!

Disney World!

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Remember MONTHS AGO when I built up so much hype about our trip to Disney and then literally NEVER POSTED A SINGLE WORD ABOUT IT? Oy. Okay, well, I’m going to post some words about a day that was glorious and wonderful and fun.

To begin, we’ll just say that I did my due diligence in terms of researching, planning, scheduling, etc. With only one day in Mickey’s presence, I wanted to make sure Charlotte and Henry (but mostly C, because H didn’t really notice) got the most out of the experience. SO, all of my research concluded with this carefully thought out schedule…

Disney Itinerary R

To access the full doc:  Disney Itinerary R

Now, some might say that I over-planned or that they’d worry such a rigid plan would feel stressful, but let me just say, we ALL enjoyed my psychotic planning. We were able to see everything we wanted to see – parades, rides, meet and greets, etc – in such a strategic way that it felt like a natural transition into the next ride or activity. I had booked all of our fast passes ahead of time (maybe 2 months out?) and our dinner reservation a month out. It was AHHHMAZING.

A few pretty important items that we packed: double stroller, neck fans!!! (it was SO damn hot and these were so crucial. They were cheap and effective), snacks (pouches, etc), sunscreen for us and the kids, hats for the kids.

Also, matching shirts…

So now, the photos and fun details…

We missed the park opening… because let’s be honest… we are ALWAYS. LATE. When we first got in, we started waiting on line to see Minnie and Goofy, but ended up leaving to start the rides because it was taking way too long. In hind sight, I do wish we would have seen Minnie. C still talks about how she wasn’t able to give Minnie a hug and a kiss. A month or two ago, she came up with the idea that we should bring her Minnie stuffed animal back to Florida to give to Minnie as a gift. So sweet.

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Our first ride was Dumbo. Being that it was C’s first ride, I wanted to pick something that was in the open so she could see exactly what was going to happen. It was a great first ride. When it was over, she instantly said that she wanted to stay on. And thankfully, the magic of Disney had rubbed off on her, because despite her wants, there were no meltdowns… the whole day… with either child.

After Dumbo, we walked to the next ride over… the barnstormer. It was a mini roller coaster that seemed fast, but not so fast. I let C watch it and asked if she’d like to ride. YES!

Let’s just say that there was NOT a lot of breathing for either of us on that ride. It was FAST! I’ll post the video, but afterward as we were getting off, C said excitedly, “That ride was SOOOOO FASSSTTTT!!! I no like to go so fast!” It’s funny because when we put her to bed that night, she told us that her favorite part of the day was going “SO FAST!!”

After the barnstormer, we went to the Winnie the Pooh area and waited in line to meet the characters. Our next fast pass was for the Winnie the Pooh ride, so we waited to see the characters and then immediately went on the ride. It was pretty silly meeting them. Charlotte was so excited, but ultimately, very timid with the characters.

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In contrast, Henry LOVED them. He was petting them, high fiving, laughing and loving every minute. It was pretty darn silly.

The Winnie the Pooh ride itself is a little scary and just intense. There’s constantly so many sounds going at one time, moving from one scene to the next quite quickly. And, of course, it seems like there’s an excessive amount of time in the “Heffalumps and Weasels” rain storm nightmare. PASS!! I could have done without that one. And C seemed like she wasn’t a fan either. I feel like I remember her saying she didn’t like it, but then maybe asking to do it again later.

Somehow, by the time we finished the Winnie the Pooh ride, it was time for lunch. We went to the Pinocchio’s Village Haus for a ridiculously priced kids meal. BUT, the positive is that we were able to find a seat easily.

Clearly the only logical follow up to lunch is the teacups. SO, we tested our luck and took C on the teacups. Simultaneously, Henry began his only nap of the day… which lasted maybe 30-45 minutes.

After the teacups, we went to the Little Mermaid – Ariel’s Grotto ride. This was the only ride we waited in line for, and probably only waited about 20-25 minutes. All along the way, there were cute little things to look at. It was an easy wait and nicely shaded, which was great. Because, did I mention that it was 97 DEGREES THAT DAY!?!?! Hot.

The Little Mermaid ride was one of C’s favorites! She seriously just LOVED it! It’s a cute little story type ride where you get to hear tons of songs and see all the characters. Thumbs up to that one.

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After little mermaid, we decided to take one more ride on Dumbo before catching the train to Main Street. I nursed Henry while we took our flight – nursing bucket list?! Of course, C loved Dumbo once again. It’s seriously just a great one. Especially on a hot day.

The train was pretty awesome, too… EXCEPT, we had to fold up our double stroller to ride, which meant making everything nice and tidy again… which was far from where we were at. We had things stashed in every cup holder and pocket. Thrown in the under storage, etc. We were littering our items through the entire line. But, no worries. The train ride was great, gave us an opportunity to sit and reapply sunscreen.

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When we got to Main Street, it was time to grab ice cream (and a GIANT starbucks coffee for me) and watch the Festival of Fantasy parade. In true form, we were cutting it close, but ended up getting a great spot and really loving the parade. I think it’s the parades and shows that really make Disney unique from other Amusement Parks. Getting to see your favorite characters, seeing the spectacle… it’s just fantastic. And seeing it through the eyes of a 2/3 year old is just magic. Charlotte believed everything she saw. Whether it made sense or not, she totally believed it. She experienced true magic throughout the day. No questions asked, totally naive, untainted trust in the Disney magic. It was just pure and awesome.

When the parade was over, we went over to use our next fast pass for the Buzz Lightyear ride, which is just so much fun. Maybe less fun for C than some other rides, but the adults enjoyed it!

Then, we headed back towards Main Street where C and Mark watched the Friendship Faire (hello, more Frozen characters and songs) and my parents, Henry and I waited for our dinner reservations at the Crystal Palace. I also had to nurse little Henry while we waited.

Dinner at the Crystal Palace was fun! I hadn’t realized that it was only Winnie the Pooh characters there, so it was a bit of a bummer that the kids wouldn’t get to meet any other characters, but seriously so much fun. I just love the character meals. By that time, C was pretty hot and exhausted and didn’t really want to interact with the characters; although, she enjoyed watching Henry play with them.

The food itself was pretty decent! I mean, let’s just be real… it’s not about the food. And when is a buffet really THAT good? But it did the trick and was super fun (and air conditioned!).

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After our 4:45pm dinner, we took a slow walk back to the car. The kids were beat, my parents were beat and we were ready to get the kids in bed so that Mark and I could go back for fireworks, parades and a couple faster rides.

Mark and I got back at firework time. We got greedy and weasled our way to the front, which turned out not to be the best spot. In hind sight, we should have stayed back towards the front of the park where we walked in.

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Anyway, afterwards, we went to find a drink. We quickly discovered that there are NONE TO BE FOUND unless you have reservations at a sit-down restaurant. Dang. I settled for a Diet Coke and then we watched the “Once Upon a Time” show, which is a projection on the castle with music. This was my favorite show of the day. It’s just fantastic.

Next, we got a FREE cream cheese stuffed hot pretzel (they were about to close), which was phenomenal, and went on the Buzz Lightyear ride and Space Mountain. Space Mountain is just so fun. I still just really love that ride.

With our adrenaline pumping, we decided we had to go ride Big Thunder Mountain. SO, we literally ran/hop/skipped our way across the park (in the heat) to haul ass to Big Thunder Mountain before the park closed. We made it and rode one more ride before calling it quits on our big Disney day.

We slowly walked back to the Ferry with tons of people hauling exhausted kids, pushing sleeping kiddos in strollers and just dragging themselves. Disney is hard work.

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All in all, we had such a great and fun-filled day!

Here are some other photos from our trip to Florida – including our hike to Coco Beach…