Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas 2012

Christmas 2012 was spent in Lexington with my family.  We trade off each year between mine and Nick's family.  The kids and I headed to Lexington on Saturday this year, and Nick came up on Christmas Eve.  This gave us some extra time with CiCi and JRS.  Tillman and CiCi made cookies, we went to service at St Peter's (my home church that I miss dearly), and Caroline got to be loved on by CiCi and JRS.  
Mom makes cookies and sandwiches each year for Christmas day.  Tillman helped with the sprinkles for the sugar cookies and dipped the snicker doodles in the cinnamon and sugar.  Caroline sat on the counter in the Bumbo and watched them as they worked.  She was still dressed in her Sunday Best since we had just got back from church.  Caroline is funny with long sleeves.  She was chewing on her sleeves, getting her hand caught in them as well.  By the time she was changed, he bib was soaked and so was her dress from all that chewing!
No Christmas weekend would be complete without seeing Santa.  This was both, Tillman and Caroline's first time to see Santa.  Tillman knows who the big joy guy is, but wasn't too sure of him when we were in line waiting for the photo.  Caroline was unphased by him.  She did, however, had to be untangled from his beard after the photo.  She had a fist full of beard and about yanked Santa's beard off...
We saw Santa at the James Island County Park lights the night before heading to Columbia.  We went with my brother's family.  We drove around and saw the light and roasted marshmallows   It was pretty cold that night, so it certainly felt like Christmas outside!

On Christmas day, we woke up and opened all of the gifts from MiMi and PaPaw & Suzanne.  Tillman was into unwrapping gifts this year. He really enjoyed ripping open the packages.  He opened pretty much all the gifts for all four of us this year.  This was a big change from last year.  Caroline did rip a few packages, but she was more interested in the paper for eating rather than the gifts!  Everything she has in her hands at this stage goes straight to the mouth!
Caroline and Tillman had their Christmas PJs!  They stayed in them the whole day.
Around noon my immediate family and my mom's side of the family came for more Christmas festivities.  We opened gift, ate lunch and got the house prepared for my dad's side of the family to come over-40 people.  Tillman opened his big Santa gift...a bike!  He is already starting to ride it around the house.  I think it will take a little bit to get the hang of it, but soon enough, he'll have it down!  
Sweet Caroline slept through the entire gift exchange in CiCi's arms.  If she can sleep through that she could likely sleep through a tornado!
When we ate after the gift exchange, Logan, one of their cousins sat down by Caroline, then Tillman sat down, and by the end of it, all the grandchildren were on the floor.  We thought it would be a great time to get a photo, but we couldn't get everyone to look and smile at the same time.  Here's the cousin Christmas photo of 2012.

4 Months 12.20.12

Our sweet little girl turned 4 months on Thursday.  She is known best these days for her chattering, curly hair, and blue eyes! She continues to sleep well.  We're even getting braver and braver to put her down earlier and earlier each night.  She sleep until 4AM on the dot!  So far, we've been putting her down as early as 8PM.  The schedule thing is tough, but we can't complain; she is a wonderful sleeper.  At daycare, she has gotten into a routine.  Now that she has great head control, she is starting to love the Bumbo seat, Jumperoo and a few other toys.  She was queen on the swing last month, but she is branching out!

Smiling at Daddy
Caroline is also rolling over from her tummy to her back.  When she makes the roll, it scares her, so it often ends up with mommy cheering and Caroline crying.  Soon enough, she'll learn that is how she is going to get to places.  Miss Pearl (teacher) says when she is put down for a nap, she rolls all around in the crib which keeps her up.  They have to pat her on the back and get her cozy before she'll settle in for a nap!

Bath time (after a blow out!)
When Caroline isn't napping, she is talking!  She is quite the chatter box.  She loves to squeal  blow bubbles, and is becoming a social butterfly!  Sometimes she gets to squealing so loud, it can hurt your ears-not good for a headache (Nick's ears can't take it at times, so he has to leave the room), but she is just so cute and serious doing it, you just can't help but smile!  If we only knew what she was thinking/saying??    

Talking away
She also is starting to reach for items.  She plays with her car seat toys and was after a Poinsettia plant over Christmas.  Every time she got near the plant, she was leaning, grabbing, and about to launch herself out of the Bumbo to get a piece of it!  My mom was worried sick that she was going to get it in her mouth! Although we have to watch for things she is reaching for, it is a great sign that she is right on track with what 4-month-olds should be doing!

Jumparoo-ed herself to sleep
Health-wise, Miss Caroline is doing well.  She does has a snotty nose always.  Poor thing can't feed sometimes because she is so stopped up.  We got one of the "snot suckers," so my hope is that will be a good tool to use instead of the bulb syringe, which doesn't work at all for her! The doctor said her ears looked great, so she just has a cold and is likely catching one cold after the next.  She also has the pink eye this month.  It was going around the room at the daycare, so it was just a matter of time until she got it.  Luckily we had the eye meds at home, so no need for a doctor trip!  I also asked question at the doctor about anything from sleep schedule to herbs to poop!  I hope they get those strange questions from every parent, or they may just think I am crazy!
Jumperoo Gal
Caroline is doing well with drinking mommy milk (not much formula these day...mommy and Caroline are in sync...finally!).  There is new research that states as long as a child is doing well then they should continue on drink mommy milk exclusively.  We'll look at adding rice cereal to her diet if she requires more milk than I produce or if she stops sleeping through the night.
Won't really take a pacy,
but loves those hands!

At the doctor, she received 4 vaccines-1 oral for rotavirus and the others by shot.  She did very well with the shots, and only cried for a second.  She didn't enjoy the oral one, and I'm pretty sure she only swallowed 1/4 of it.  Sure hope it still works because the rotavirus is horrible 

Caroline's 4 Month Stats:
Weight 13.12 lbs (40th percentile)
Height 24.25 inches (40th percentile)
Head Circumference 16.25 inches (70th percentile)
BMI 16.4
Diapers-Size 1
Clothing-3-6 months
Mommy Milk-4oz every 3 hours during the day
Night Night-8:15PM-4AM (sometime 5AM) in the Moses Basket

Thursday, December 13, 2012

27 months 12.12.12

Wagon is now referred to as a trailer...
that sounds so much cooler...right?
12.12.12 was a rather normal day for us.  I understand is one of the most popular wedding days, since it is the last time we will see a synchronized date in this century. Tillman turned 27 months on Wednesday.  I must say he is in the thick of the terrible two's phase.  He is either on the verge of tears or a tantrum these days.  Time out is a well know place.  It's funny because he understands why he goes to time out, but it doesn't stop the behavior.  Sometimes if we ask him to do something and he doesn't want to do it, he request to go to time out.  When he did that the first time, I was totally caught off guard.  I was thinking "That little stinker. He know exactly what he is doing is wrong, and doesn't care."
Little Sis and Big Bro
If I could explain to him that life at two is really easy, although it seems like the end of the world when you don't get to eat cookies and cracker for dinner, when you have to ride in the car seat  or when you have to pee pee on the potty!  Life does seem to get more complex the older we get. Soon enough life will be more than going to daycare and playing all day, saying "yes ma'ma," "please" and "thank you" keep you out of trouble...mostly, and learning that everything indeed isn't "yellow." (bummer...right?)
Loves to play with mommy's phone...
always requesting the camera
Tillman is learning to work us too...testing our limits.  We've had to become more stern as parents.  The mornings and nights are particularly challenging since he is just waking up or tired/ready for bed.  Food selection often ends in a tantrum, Tillman going hungry, or a parent pulling their hair out.  Tillman will request an apple, and then he says "I don't want it," and then request a sandwich, which he says he doesn't want after it is made.  We try to stick to our guns with going with the first item he chose.  Doesn't always bode well for our household.  For example, this morning Tillman wanted an apple, and then a sandwich. Both items were refused after given to him.  He threw the sandwich on the floor (in between this he went to time out).  He ended up leaving the house with nothing to eat and had a tantrum getting in the car seat   The whole way to school he pouted and in a primped face and pouty voice he says "my sandwich" the whole way to school.  When we get out of the car at school, more tantrum, once in the classroom, a COMPLETELY new kid...hence he is playing us, parents, like a fiddle and knows the teachers do not play!
Captain of the boat at the Children's Museum 
In other news, Tillman's language continue to improve.  He is starting to talk on the phone!  He request to call MiMi and CiCi/JRS.  He knows how to carry a basic conversation. We use the time in the car on the way home from school to call people and chat.  He knows/can verbalize basic information-mom and dad's real names, his age, and his name.  I'm trying to teach him his address and a few other key pieces of information for safety.
Playing outside on a Sunny Sunday
If Tillman is playing by himself, and you eavesdrop you can hear him counting.  "1, 2, 6, 9, 10."  He loves to say "9,10."  He also loves to independently play.  The past few weekends it has been super nice outside, and he can play outside doing absolutely nothing all day!  He even eats outside.  One Saturday he came in only to take a nap.  He plunders around the yard, plays with toys, and explores.  It is cute to watch him out the window.  He has found some of the most random items in our yard as well.  I even caught him dumping a plant out of a bucket, so he could wear the bucket as a hat!
Playing in the exam room at the After Hour Care
This active two year old hasn't let a serious rash he's had this month get him down, as you probably gathered.  He had to go to the After Hours Care twice and was referred to a dermatologist.  We aren't rash free yet, but it looks a ton better and isn't contagious! At the doctor he weight 27lbs with all of his clothes on; he's been holding steady at the mid-20's in weight for a while.  We have gone to the doctor so much that he ask when we are getting in the car if we are going to the doctor.  Funny what he remembers!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Truck YEAH!

Tillman loves a truck (daddy's truck, semi's, trucks with doesn't matter), and recently he has been getting into music too.  He likes to watch CMT, and likes the song, Truck yeah's, video....He knows the chorus "Truck yeah!"  He loves the video with all the trucks in it too.  I think he may like that video as much as cartoons!

Tillman has a "truck" of his own he is learning to drive.  I must say, he does listen at directions when he is TRYING to operate it, but he doesn't have his license just yet. Let's see....he knows how to push the gas!  However, he doesn't know how to steer.  That is a problem that almost caused him to flip his "truck" and caused him to run into a lot of things (including almost hitting mommy's car!).

Tillman's Power Wheel Jeep is his truck!  He even knows how to lift the hood and connect the battery, so I learned yesterday after he was pitching a fit to ride it.  As soon as we pulled into the garage, Tillman was whimpering saying "Truck Truck."  "Mommy, Truck Truck!"  He was told that he couldn't ride it, as it was getting dark and we had to walk Graham...boy, did he get ramped up!  Needless to say the neighbors could hear him screaming, and I'm really surprised the police didn't show up because he was screaming bloody murder!  Boys and their trucks....Truck Yeah!!!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012

Afternoon stroll around the house
We had Thanksgiving at our house this year.  We've hosted it for the past 4 years.  Nick commented this weekend that a lot has changed since the first time we hosted it-going from no kids to two kids would be the biggest change!  We had 21 people this year for the Thanksgiving feast.  Although we have told folks to not bring anything big, we still manage to have tons of leftovers...even wine and beer (what a sin!).
Uncle Ricky said the Blessing (gah gah to Tillman), JRS did a fried turkey, CiCi cooked bread, dressing, and sweet potato souffle, Mrs Mazy did her famous mac n' cheese, Aunt Julie did her famous corn bread casserole, Aunt Sylvia did her famous potato salad, and Nick did the deserts and baked a turkey. Many other items were brought as well.

Baking at the house started at 5AM!  Nick went to the grocery store the night before Thanksgiving   The smallest turkey was a 14 pounder!  We will be eating turkey for a while.  He had the over going into overdrive with baking 2 pumpkin pies, an apple pie, the turkey, and a cranberry upside down cake!  The pumpkin pies cause a bit of a mishap that filled the kitchen with smoke and made a very filthy oven!  The pumpkin pies ran over while rising.  We had to open all the windows, turn on the fans, and take the batteries out of the smoke detectors.  Caroline slept through it all, Tillman thought it was funny, and Graham wouldn't come back in the house for an hour after the smoke cleared (smart dog).

Tillman laughing at all the commotion 
While Nick was cooking, Tillman gave Graham a bath for the first time!  Tillman is starting to be able to tell his story of how things happened.  He reported to his daddy that Graham "shook" and "was all wet!"  Tillman and I also vacuumed the house before the guest arrived.
The Cook!
Tillman got a front row seat for the feast!  He sat right by the mac n' cheese and ate out of the container. We had to teach him some table manners.  He also made a complete mess, and stained the bar stool seat! He still needs to be in a high chair...for sure.  After cooking and dinner, the boys enjoyed passing the ball outside and sweet Caroline was held by all and napped the remainder of the afternoon.  I guess that turkey made her sleepy!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

3 months 11.20.12

Strolling in Waterfront Park
Month 3 comes with lots of transition- mommy went back to work after 12 weeks and Caroline's in daycare.  We did have a busy month while I was still at home. Caroline took her first road trip and hotel stay to Greenville to watch Nick ride in his first bike race. By Caroline being a baby, we got front row parking (being and having a baby has its advantages!). We also got to introduce Caroline to her maternal extended family, and she also got to meet Nick's sister's family too!  She attended her first wedding-Papaw got married on Seabrook Island on Nov 3rd. Caroline also "got to vote" for the first time.  Oh, and Nick wouldn't want me to forget that she attended her first PURDUE event this month too!

Waiting in the two hour line to VOTE
For us, as parents, I think a second child has taught us we just have to go and do...we have to try at least.  Caroline has been an "on the go baby."  We used to avoid going place, out to eat, etc. because we had a child that might cry or act out.  The more we go and do, we've found that we can manage them pretty well, we have to take one out or just leave!
She love to "hang" in the car seat
Caroline likes to be on the go.  It seems when we are out, the more she tends to sleep.  She enjoys stroller rides and is getting used to the car more and enjoying it too.  She is a very content child, as the daycare says she only cries if she is wet, hungry or tired.  Now, I know I get fussy over a lot more than that, so Caroline sure is content. She shows her happiness through smiling, cooing (I think she will be a chatter box), and little giggles.
Laughing, Smiling, Giggling...
One thing I really enjoy about Caroline is that she likes to cuddle! She would rather be held than put down any day.  She is pretty spoiled because if she is put down and you walk away, she know and will let you know she doesn't approve.  She loves for someone to be in her face entertaining her at all times.   Caroline will watch you do a task, but you better be moving a lot and not stay in one place or she gets a little fussy.  She must think if I'm standing in one place for a long time, then I should be holding her!
Daddy and Caroline with their
 "I voted" stickers
We have been working on establishing a routine.  For the most part, we have one.  She wakes in the 5 or 6 o'clock hour.  She breastfeeds and goes back to sleep.  This is when the whole house gets ready.  Often I change her and feed her, and then slip her into the carseat, so she is ready to go when we leave the house around 7. Her daycare routine isn't established, but she cat naps throughout the day and generally eats every four hours.  I generally pick both kiddos up around 5.  She is generally content until 6, and then she is fed.  She naps in the 7 o'clock hour.  8-9:30 or 10, she is feeding until she falls asleep.  I've found if she goes to bed before 9:30, she wake up early.  With going back to work, I'm all about keeping her asleep until the alarm goes off at 5AM in our house!
She is receiving formula, since she is such a hungry girl and mommy just can't keep up. I'm sad a little bit that I'm not making enough mommy milk, but we are hanging in there. I'm glad that she is still getting mommy milk as much as possible. Bottle-feeding has caused her to drink a lot more, but on the weekends we don't have to supplement.
I'm not ready to go to sleep look
Caroline is wearing 0-3 month clothes and even some 3-6 month clothing.  She is 13lbs!  Her hair is growing like crazy and is CURLY!  I just love her curls.  When we wash it, it has the tight curls all over her head.  Tillman loves to point to Caroline and say "pur-dy" (pretty!).  Caroline is also sporting big girl hair bows!
I have just LOVED having a little girl.  I catch myself just staring at her.  She has been a true blessing to our family.  I'm unsure if she will be our last kiddo, but I'm treating it as if she is!

Friday, November 16, 2012

26 months 11.12.12

Tillman watching Mickey!
The whole family went to Disney on Ice this past Sunday!  This was the first time we had ventured out to a show with Tillman (or Caroline). When the show started, Tillman didn't know what to think.  He didn't budge for the first 10 minutes of the show trying to figure out what he was watching.
T loving Cotton Candy!
Once the show was in full-swing he started to enjoy himself, sing along, and dance!  He also had his first taste of cotton candy!  He didn't know what to think of the texture at first, but once he got a taste of it, he was HOOKED!
Clapping along with the show
Tillman this month has really improved in his sentences.  Yesterday in the car we were on the phone with my mom, and she asked Tillman how he was doing and he said "I'm good!"  I had never heard him say that before!  He also says "I want ___.", "I did it.", I put it up." and "I love you!" He is starting to really listen to what he hears us say, and is starting to use them as his own words.  I know that is where he got "I'm good" from since he hears us talk on the phone all the time!
Tillman the chatter box is wonderful with sentences and objects (lawnmower went from "mow mow" to "mow mer"); however, his whole world is still YELLOW! We can't get him to learn his colors.  Sometimes I feel like he knows the color, but he is just saying yellow. Other times, I really think he might be color blind...don't laugh, I've Googled the signs!
Another area of improvement with Tillman over the last month is his appetite.  He is starting to eat more meat and is starting to clean his plate more.  We used to have a small section of food he would eat, but he will now eat what we have.  Last night he ate a ton of broccoli off Nick's plate after finishing his dinner.
Tillman is also requesting on occasion to go to the potty and is requesting to wear a "poo up" (Pull Up).  He will start to take his pants down.  We really try to make it a huge deal when he goes at home.  He does really well at school-going 3 times a day.
Tillman sharing with Caroline
Tillman is also enjoying being a big brother. He knows to be gentle with Caroline and really enjoys helping her.  He acknowledges her every move and sound-sneezes (wants to get a tissue for her), crying (he shhh's her), knows when he hears that her diaper needs to be changed, and runs to say "hi" ("Hey Caro yine") to hear when we are picking him up from daycare. He is genuinely excited to see her.
Big brother helping/playing Caroline
While Tillman is being wonderful and gentle with baby Caroline, he has had an incident at school.  Tillman bit a child in his class on Monday. The teacher assured me that it was normal and he had never done it before. She said it came out of nowhere when he was fighting over a toy with the child.  He went to time out.  I asked him about it and he admitted that he had bit. Nick talked to him and I did.  He still tells us when we ask him how his day was at school each day, " no!"  I think he got the message that there will be no biting.  He normally throws a fit when he goes to time out, but they took him to a strange room for time out, and he didn't say a word.  We think it made a huge impression on him, so the message seems received.
Tillman wanting his picture taken
While Tillman is growing up in a lot of ways, he still loves to be carried.  He was so independent before Caroline was born, but now with her being held all the time, he wants to be held.  I've had to grow some mussels because I carry him on one hip and the baby carries with the other arm.  He is really testing my strength.  We are trying to teach him about being a "big boy," but when he wants to be carried or has in his mind what he wants, there is no changing it!
I also find that he is starting to become more attached to items-particularly his blanket and moose that he sleeps with.  He is requesting all of these items before going to bed and likes to take them downstairs with him each morning.  Between all of these items and the sleep sac, it is a big production to go to bed.  Yes, we thought the sleep sac was going to see an exit, but that was a brief moment.  He still very much loves them!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Halloween 2012

Halloween was celebrated several times and places this year.  We stayed in Lexington after Caroline's Sip n' See go to St Peter's Harvest Fest and Truck or Treat.  We had a wonderful time.  We drove back to Charleston late on that Sunday.  We thought that Tillman would go right to sleep since 7 is his bed time, but we were mistaken.  He didn't fall asleep until Orangeburg on I-26. I think he was on a sugar high.

Tillman and Lance as little monkeys

Little Caroline slept through the Harvest fest after a busy day getting to meet all the Lexington family and friends.  CiCi made her a pumpkin costume that she sported to all her Halloween events.  Tillman was a monkey this year, and he loved the tail and even made monkey sounds!

Daycare also had Halloween events.  Tillman got to wear his costume to school.  They had a dance party-Tillman was a wild man dancing we hear.  See the pics from his teacher.  After daycare, the teachers hosted a Truck or Treat.  Tillman didn't get the whole "trick or treat;" he would just say "treat!"  Pretty smart guy if you ask me!
Tillman's class all dressed up

Tillman break-dancing

After daycare festivities, we headed to Summertrees (our old neighborhood) and did the official trick or treating.  Tillman and daddy went from house to house, while Caroline and I stay at the Jackson's house handing out candy!

Sweet Caroline in her Pumpkin shirt!