Thursday, December 30, 2010

Evie update

OK I have been slacking updating on her accomplishments!

So a few days ago, lets say Tuesday December 28. Evie was responding to her name! I would call it and she would whip her head around and look at me. Then I would say other things. Her head would start staring at something else. Then said her name again! And eye contact! Such a Big Girl!

Since Christmas Evie has not been sleeping well. It has SUCKED. Up every 1-3 hours. Closer to the 1-2 hour range. Restless sleeping. Always making noise. Ugh.

Called the pediatrician. She has some dry spots on her head and her back. They think she isn't sleeping well because she is dry and itchy. I have been moisturizing and putting baby oil on. But not enough. So they recommend Aquaphor (I actually picked some up the night before because my aunt recommended it). They also suggested a little bit of liquid benedryl (1/4 of a tsp, so about 1 mL).

She was lathered in aquaphor (head and back). Gave her some benedryl. She did not like the taste of that. Her face was hilarious! Well I don't blame her, cherry flavored medicine is DISCUSTING! Really should have gotten it on video. Someone on one of the boards I am on recommended using a sleep sack and zipping her arms in instead of putting them in the arm holes. Nick installed her black out shade.

And she slept so much better last night! WooHoo! Tonight trying no benedryl, I don't like medicating my baby. I think she is also having a wakeful period.

She did put one arm out the sleep sack arm hole. But she left her head be. She did wake up twice to eat. I think because she is so tired when she gets home she doesn't want to eat. But she loves waking up early. I really needed to sleep in. She would have loved to get up at 5:30 but no. Pacifier and Seahorse worked. We did get up at 6:30. Not bad.

I think I need to get a kid/baby dvd to put on while I am getting ready. I hate her watching TV, but to get ready for work, take care of animals, get pump and such together. I need her entertained. Any recommendations?

Also, my mom did get us an AWESOME christmas present for Evie! A doorway jumper. We have it set up in the area between the dining room and kitchen. Evie loves it. And it gives me somewhere to put her where she is entertained, watches me and the dogs while I do things in the kitchen! Love that thing! Thank You Mom!

What a wonderful Christmas

Ok its been a bit since I posted.

We had a wonderful wonderful Christmas! Evie got some great things! We just enjoyed being home with Evie. Loved Christmas morning. We let it drag out and would not change that for anything! Woke up with Evie. Made muffins. She took her morning nap while I picked up. Nick got up. Made mimosas. Opened stockings. Opened presents. Had a leisurly time sitting in front of the tree playing with Evie. Had a yummy breakfast.

Was perfect! I would say the best Christmas we have ever had.

Christmas Tree with Presents. Santa didn't wrap Evie's things. Wanted to make it easy for her to enjoy them!

Santa filled everyone's stockings! I hope to learn how to knit and make a stocking like mine and Evie's for Nick. And one for the animals similar. And yes my stocking is full. Just it is a huge stocking.

Mom...I think I have too many toys piled up here!

And Evie's big toy from Santa!

Christmas Morning breakfast. She wanted a muffin!

I have more pictures, just havn't uploaded them yet.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Inside Out Pumpkin Muffins

These are my favorite muffins to make! So yummy.

Evie and I made them Christmas morning. Easy and yum!

They are from King Arthur Flour. Copy and pasted below, with some notes added (italic).

1 cup (8 ounces) puréed pumpkin (about half of a 15-ounce can)
2 large eggs
1/2 cup (3 3/4 ounces) brown sugar
3 tablespoons (1 1/4 ounces) vegetable oil
1/4 cup (3 ounces) boiled cider* (for best flavor), or dark corn syrup (I used maple syrup, or made my own apple cider simple syrup)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (or 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves, 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, and 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup (2 5/8 ounces) milk
1 1/2 cups (6 3/4 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose or King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour, preferably organic

1 8-ounce package cream cheese or Neufchâtel cheese
1/4 cup (1 3/4 ounces) granulated sugar
a few drops Fiori di Sicilia flavor, optional (I just bought this and yes it makes it better. But you can use vanilla extract, or a combo of vanilla and orange, or vanilla with orange zest)

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with muffin papers, and grease the papers. Or lightly grease a maple leaf pan.

To make the batter: Whisk together the pumpkin, eggs, brown sugar, oil, boiled cider or corn syrup, salt, spices, baking powder, baking soda, and milk. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the flour and mix until well combined.

To make the filling: Place the cream cheese in a microwave-safe bowl, and heat on low power for 40 seconds. Stir in the sugar and flavor.

Drop about 2 tablespoons of the batter (a tablespoon cookie scoop works well here) into each muffin cup, spreading it to cover the bottom. Dollop on a heaping tablespoon of filling, then cover with another 2 tablespoons of batter. If you’re using maple leaf molds, drop about 1 1/2 tablespoons of batter into each of the 6 molds. Add a scant tablespoon of filling, and spread about 1 1/2 tablespoons batter on top. The recipe will make 16 maple leaves, so you’ll need to bake in batches.

Bake the standard muffins for 18 to 20 minutes, until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out crumb-free. Bake the leaf muffins for 16 to 18 minutes, testing them the same way. Remove from the oven. After 5 minutes, gently loosen the edges of the leaf muffins, and turn the pan over onto a cooling rack; the muffins should drop out. For regular muffins, simply transfer them to a rack to cool.
Yield: 12 regular muffins, or 16 leaf muffins.

To make apple cider simple syrup: equal parts apple cider with sugar. Boil down until a syrup forms. Let cool. Similar to regular simple syrup but using apple cider. Easy. And good to use in mixed drinks!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Card Decorations

I saw this a few years on Martha Stewart and had a crafty evening and did this. I use it every year and love it!

What it is. A decorative rope (could use ribbon) tied to the railings of our stairs (you could put above or on a fireplace mantle, along wall, whatever). Then take close pins. With a glue stick, glue on pieces of old wrapping paper to the front. Simple. And easy to do with a glass of wine while watching christmas movies!

Then as you get christmas cards, attach them to the rope/ribbon and you are good! Simple and a great decoration!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Craft - Evie Snowman Ornament

I wanted to share a Christmas craft Evie and I did. I google searched a few months ago about Christmas crafts that a baby can do. Then I found someone on a board I am on who did this last year with her nephew. So I had to do it!

It was hard with little baby hands. But we did this right after a nap and right after she ate. So she was an awake, full, and non cranky baby. We had her in her bumbo (on the large counter top). Nick was holding her to make sure she didn't move or fall or anything. He held her arm so it wouldn't touch anything. I quickly painted her hand and put it on the ornaments. Then put the ornament gently in an egg carton to dry and grabbed the next one.

I wish I used shatterproof ornaments but I could not find them. I will try to find for next year.

We made many of them. 2 for us (one as a backup/storage). 1 for my parents. 1 for Nick's parents. 1 for Katie (Evie's grandmother). 1 for Andy (Evie's grandfather...who if you are reading this which I doubt you do, please disregard this). We have a few extra that I am figuring out who to give to.

Some the thumb didn't' turn out so it is a 4 snowman ornament (seen below).

I added some silver snowflakes to it and added her name, age, and year to the back.

And the finished project, hanging on the tree. Absolutely love it. It is by far my favorite on the tree!

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Merry Christmas All!

I really hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas!

Tomorrow, Christmas Eve, we are driving down to visit my aunt/uncle/cousins! My grandmother and grandfather (Mormor and Smurf) are visiting them! So excited that Evie gets to meet her great grandparents! We are going down early to spend as long as possible with them. So stay tuned for pictures!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

step back in de swaddling

Putting Evie to bed these past 2 nights have been torture. She gets so tired, since she is awake more at day care. She is all of a sudden so much more active. So that means she is almost out at 6 to 6:30. I like her to go to bed at 7 so we get some play time in with her.

But the past few nights she is EXHAUSTED. I nurse her around 6 to 6:30. She may fall asleep in my arms. When we move her to bed, she is screaming! Her "I'm soooooooooooooo tired" scream. To help her settle down, swaddling was the only thing that worked. And since I wanted to make sure she slept, it was a full swaddle, all the way up.

I think tonight we will try to get her ready at 6:30 and not put it off with her downstairs with us. Makes me sad not being able to spend time with her, but she needs it.

She hasn't been napping much at day care. But this could be normal for her age. I don't know. But she has 2 naps. One almost an hour (usually 45 min) and one that is an hour to an hour and a half. She could be like her mommy who doesn't nap well.

But these past 2 nights sleeping swaddled. She sleeps Well! I feed her around 10pm and she is down for the night!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Breastfeeding in Church

This weekend I took Evie to church by my self. Nick was busy helping his dad install our new dishwasher! Anyways, she got hungry. I have before gone into the entry way so we don't disturb anyone. But this time I didn't. I put on my nursing cover and fed her during the homily. Worked wonders!

Haha! I have nursed in church! For some reason, there is a little accomplishment there. I don't know why. And no one cared, or at least didn't say anything to me.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

No Arm Swaddling!

Last night, I did it! I swaddled her with her swaddle blanket and left her arms out!


Well to clarify, I swaddled her loosely with arms in, and she did pull them out about an hour in. She went down at 6:30. Woke up a little before 10 hungry. She was exhausted so didn't eat much when I got her home. Realized that I completely forgot to put her night time diaper on (bad mommy), so put it on. Decided to be daring and swaddled her with arms out!


That is right, 8.5 hours. With her arms out! And the odd thing, she didn't move around as much as she does completely swaddled. Hmm..... But she did move in the opposite direction - up her crib, not down like normal.

But it was a great night!

Friday, December 17, 2010


OK I know the second I write this I am going to regret it and Evie will torture me.

But the past few nights I have been getting awesome sleep!

Put Evie to bed at 7:00 - 7:30. She sleeps till 10 or 11 and wants to eat a little more. Fine I am usually still awake or 1/2 asleep.

AND SHE SLEEPS TILL 7AM! I may have to go in when I am first getting up to put her pacifier in her mouth to buy me the needed 30 minutes to get everything together and take care of the animals.

but whoa! Awesome!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Starting to break the Swaddle

It is time to stop swaddling Evie. She is 4 months old. Loves to move around. Starting to roll and move onto her side. And she breaks out easily if it is not tight enough.

To gradually do this, we are swaddling her lower and lower. Right now about 1/2 of her arms are de swaddled. This means that she does break out of it, at least one arm.

Last night she did break out of it, but instead of re swaddling her, I decided to see where this goes. She did fine! WooHoo! I think she slept for 3-4 hours with one arm un swaddled!!!!

Depending on how adventurous I am feeling, I may swaddle with arms out on Friday night.

I would really like for her to sleep in a sleep sack. We learn so much in our sleep, that I want her to be able to move and her muscles practice and learn. And I want her to be able to sleep how she wants to sleep. If she is like her mommy, she will want to sleep on her side or stomach. If she wants to she can. I feel fine about it. She holds her head up well. Turns it well. So if she finds her way to her stomach while sleeping, she can do it! (Just means I have to change how I stuff her night time diapers)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Evie's new thing!

Every diaper change, Evie loves to grab her feet. This started about 2 days ago. Each time, her feet get closer and closer to her head / mouth. Makes cleaning up the diaper easy. Makes putting on the new diaper a challenge since she wants to keep them as close to her mouth as possible.

Soon, and I think within a week, they will find their way into her mouth!

Cannot believe how quickly she is learning things now! Really. Every day she develops more and more.

I need to take a picture of her playing with her feet!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Happy 4 months Evelyn!

You are four months old already. Sorry this is a few days late. You were sick on your four month birthday. Then Mommy and Daddy got sick on Sunday night. But we are all doing much better!

I cannot believe how fast the past four months have gone by. It really is surprising!

You really are growing and learning every single day! You are grasping and actually playing with toys. Everything goes into your mouth! You are learning how to roll, both ways! Your coordination is coming along so well. You love all your different toys. Your favorite is a pink butterfly I hand on your play mat. The wings crinkle when you grab onto it, and they go into your mouth. You also love your winkle, so many fun things to play with!

I just cannot believe how much you have grown in the past month. You were barely interested in toys last month. Now you are holding onto them. You hug them if I am holding it in front of you.

You have discovered your voice and love to shriek and talk. And do a fake cry just to get attention. Your morning conversations are the best!

You are such a happy baby! Mommy and Daddy love you soooo very much!

Yesterday was your 4 month well baby check up. You are doing great! Did not like the shots one bit though. They made you much more fussy than the 2 month shots.

You are now:
25.25 in long (80%ile)
13lb 1oz (50%ile)
39.5 cm head circumference (20%ile)

Mommy tried to get pictures of you on your 4 month birthday, but you were sick. So I got some on Sunday and you wern't very smily, and after going through the same thing, I understand. But I did get some good ones!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Baby Puke

Yesterday, 12-11-10. Evie's 4 month birthday.

We were out at babies r us at 5ish. Getting something for christmas. And. we were looking at what we wanted to get her, and she started projectile puking in her car seat. The pathetic burp cloth did nothing. It just kept going and going. Some even came out of her nose. Poor Girl

But she didn't seem to mind. I fed her before we left, so it had been at most 30 minutes. We went into the mother's room and completely stripped her. It was all over her bundle me. All over the car seat straps. Some got on the stroller.

Thank god for my wet bag. I was able to clean out the car seat with a lot of wipes. And I had an extra blanket. But yeah.

Called up the pediatrician. He suggested I feed her a little bit every 15 minutes. She kept it all down. I snuggled with her for a while. Eventually put her in her crib. She slept well. And she is fine this morning.

But wow that was a great puke! Thinking about it more, she did throw up some earlier that day, around 3 or 4, but we just thought it was a big spit up.

But yeah she is fine.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Dentist Appointment Update

This morning I had my 6 month dental cleaning and check up.

Proud to say that I don't have to go back till my next 6 month cleaning! WooHoo! My gums do bleed, but they said that hormones left over from pregnancy stick around and can still cause it. And nursing causes it. Lovely.

But I am doing good. Have one area they are watching (they have been watching it for a year now, so I hope nothing is going on).

I hate being poked and prodded in my mouth. And it is all sore now. Boo. But it is for the good.

I really need to start flossing more. Lately I am a 2-3 time a week flosser. Not horrible but not good. But flossing is a pain in the bum. Completely awkward. But healthy for my mouth so I need to do it more often.

I did ask and Evie needs to go to the dentist at 1 year. So call in 6ish months and make an appointment. WooHoo. The first appointment is mostly teaching the parents what to do. Real check ups start around 2 years. Need to take care of Evie's (non existing) teeth. I don't want to pay for braces! I am hoping she takes after me in that territory, I never had braces. I hope she takes after Nick who doesn't have many teeth problems.

Don't you love the feel of your teeth after a cleaning? The polish makes them so smooth.

Monday, December 6, 2010

post partum hair loss

I have hair piles everywhere. It sucks. Piles by the couch as I hand brush my hair after a day of work. Piles in the morning when I brush my hair. Piles in the shower as I wash.

It is gross. There is hair everywhere. I have long hair, and do like it (especially Nick). This makes this postpartum hair loss even more dramatic on the floor. The piles of a few strands of hair looks like so much more. It is funny, there are dog hair piles and Morrigan hair piles. Both gross. I brush my hand through my hair and usually come out with one strand of hair. Ick. The white tiled bathroom floor, is never clean anymore. And I am afraid to vacuum before sweeping because I don't want to clog the vacuum with my hair!

I know I have more months of this. I hate having to make sure that I didn't leave a hair on Evie, between her and her diaper, under her clothing, intertwined between her fingers (which happens easily know since she loves to grab my hair).

I can see how many moms get a 'mom' cut. I can't do it. But there are times where I contemplate it. I just got a cut (need to post pictures) and love it. I am now sporting a long side bang. I styled it last night and this am and it did turn out good!

4 month wakefull

yep we are in it.

This is a lovely period, from what I have read, where babies are more aware of their surroundings. They wake up at night, many times.

Nick has said that when he goes in there, she is making noise and crying, the second he opens the door, she smiles at him and stops. So happy. He does this a few times before he comes to bed at night (around midnight - 1 am). I go in and feed her around 1:30 to 2 now (used to be later) and she does eat. Then around 4:30 she wakes again, happy as can be when I open the door (lights are always off during the middle of the night). Give her back her pacifier. Put the seahorse back on. Go back to bed. Then awake again at 5:30, and she nurses again. And does eat.

They say this happens, especially to nursing babies, because they are so distracted while nursing that they don't eat as much during the day and make up for it at night. Totally the case here. And it happens because around 4 months they are more aware of the world around them and just like to know what is going on.

From reading here this is a good milestone. What a wonderful milestone *eyeroll*. it means that Evie is bonding with us and is having a good time with us during the day.

Wonder how long this will be.

Trip to Visit Santa

Being this is Evie's first Christmas, she HAD to visit Santa. What little girl doesn't want to visit Santa?

He was at the local animal rescue league. And she wanted to go with her doggy sisters, because they wanted to ask Santa for christmas presents too.

Evie asked for: milk, clean diapers (well she is a baby and those are the most wonderful things in the world to her), a jumperoo, and more toys
Penny asked for: a steak, some more toys, and a bully stick
Luna asked for: hugs and cuddles, toys, and some yummy treats

I think Santa can accomplish those requests! Lilly wasn't able to come (he is not a very social bunny) but he asked for some yogurt drops and some bunny toys, especially the twiggy ball one.

And Evie was not afraid of Santa at all! She is a social butterfly. She loves people holding her, no matter who it is. She was smiling and cooing.

My girls and Santa

I cannot believe everyone is looking at the camera! What is the chance of that happening!

Thursday, December 2, 2010


My mom got this recipe from someone she works with. It is sooo yummy and makes excellent leftovers! I made it on Sunday. We had it for dinner Monday night, had it for lunch on Tuesday, had it for dinner again on Wednesday. So good. And was sad when we finished it.

This has a nice kick to it, not too spicy. For us though, that may mean it is spicy for others. We love our heat!

Forgive the pictures...

Chili on top of corn bread

Topped with Cheddar Cheese and Avocado

Chipotle Chili

2 Tbsp red chili powder
1 tsp chipotle chili powder
1 Tbsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground oregano
1 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp ground coriander seeds (I didn't have any)
3-4 Tbsp water

4 strips of bacon, cut up
2 1/2 (or more) chuck roast cut into 1/2 inch cubes (we used something different that was on sale but I don't remember)
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic minced
2 jalapeno peppers, minced (remove seeds for less heat)

1 14oz can tomatoes (I used green chili diced tomatoes)
1 1/2 cup water
1 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice (about 1/2 lime)
1 tsp sugar

1 14oz can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 tsp cornstarch dissolved in a little water to prevent clumping

In a small bowl mix the chili powder, chipotle powder, cumin, oregano, thyme, corriander. Add water until it becomes a light paste.

Cook the bacon in a large skillet until crisp. Remove from pan and set aside on paper towel. (You could cook the bacon in strips and crumble, but I find it easier to slice the bacon before cooking it)

Increase heat to medium high. Add 1 Tbsp of bacon fat (YUM!). Working in batches so the meat isn't crowded and is steamed, brown the meat on all sides, lightly salting as it cooks. Remove from pan and set aside.

Add 1 Tbsp of bacon fat to the pan. Add the chopped onino and saute until soft, about 5 minutes. Ad the garlic and jalapeno. Cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the chili paste and cook for 2-3 more minutes.

Into a 6 quart thick bottomed dutch oven, put onion chili mixture, beef, bacon, tomatoes, water, lime juice and sugar. Heat the chili on medium heat until it comes to a simmer. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 1 1/2 hours. Then cover and cook for another half hour, keeping the temperature at a place where you can maintain a simmer.

Mix the cornstarch into a little water to dissolve. Add it to the chili to thicken. Gently mix in the kidney beans. Add salt to taste. Adjust seasonings as needed.

We like to serve on top of crumbled cornbread and top with avocado. Cheese is yummy but not needed with this yummy chili!


Angel Biscuits

This recipe is from my Mom. I don't remember where she got it. But this is my FAVORITE biscuit recipe. Make it the night before. The longer the dough is in the fridge the better they get. I love to make it on Sunday morning and enjoy them all week. I turn the oven on and throw one in when I get up. Take it out of the oven when done. Put some jam on it and wrap it in foil and bring it into work. Such a yummy easy homemade breakfast! Actually I just finished one with apricot jam!

These pictures don't do it justice - my yeast is starting to die so they didn't puff up as much, and I didn't leave them in the fridge long enough since I was hungry on Sunday morning!

Biscuits Fresh out of the oven!

Angel Biscuits
2 1/4 tsp yeast (I believe this is a package of yeast, I like to keep a jar of yeast in my fridge)
1/2 cup warm water (105F - 115F)
5 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup margarine or butter (very cold/frozen)
2 cups buttermilk

Dissolve yeast in water for 5 minutes (I have found using a chopstick to stir helps it dissolve faster)

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Cut in butter with a pastry blender/cutter until it resembles a coarse meal. This step is important. The small bits of butter make it flaky and oh so good.

Add yeast mixture and buttermilk. Stir just until moist.

Cover and Chill at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 450F. Turn dough out (as much as you wish to use) onto a heavily floured surface and kneed lightly about 5 times.

Roll or pat dough to 1/2" thick and cut with a biscuit cutter. Place on parchment paper. If I am making this in the morning just for myself I just grab a blob of dough out of the container in the fridge, shape in hands and place on parchment paper.

Brush with melted butter (salted I find is yummier, and sometimes just put a small piece of cold butter on top).

Bake for about 13 minutes