Cooper at 6 Months Old

I know everyone says this and it’s so cliché but man I can’t believe how fast these past 6 months have gone. It’s so amazing how I couldn’t imagine adding another child to our lives and now I can’t even remember what life was like without him! The first 3 (heck, maybe even 4) months were hard. Cooper has not been an easy baby by any means of the word but he is so joyful and brings so much love and happiness to our family. The love I have for him is indescribable.

Likes:

  • My “Cooper/Charlotte” necklace I received as a gift from my mom. He is constantly pulling on it and playing with it.
  • To scream! Dude has a voice and likes to use it.
  • He loves cheese.
  • Nursing.
  • Being outside, particularly going for walks.
  • Reading books.
  • His jumper, he goes crazy in that thing!
  • Charlotte is his serious BFF, they are adorable together.
  • Having his face washed, seriously! What kid likes this?! Mine does.

Dislikes:

  • Being in the car too long.
  • Doing one thing for too long, he likes variety in his day.
  • Going to sleep.

Sleep:

Well this is a touchy subject, haha! We’ve gone through so many things with Coopers sleep but we are finally at a place where we have somewhat of a schedule down that works. Cooper gets ready for bed starting at 6pm, I feed him and he is in his crib and asleep by 6:45/7. I dream-feed him at 9 or 9:30 before I go to bed, then he’s usually up between 1-2am to eat again and then wakes up between 5-6am for the day. However, I do not go and get him out of crib until 6am. *Update-Just got back from his 6 month dr’s appointment and got the approval to wean him from his middle of the night feeding. Halleluiah!!*

He takes his first nap of the day at 7:30am and that one ranges between 45 minutes to an hour and a half. His second nap of the day is usually 9:30/10, third nap is around 1pm and he usually needs a “rescue” nap at around 3 or 3:30 to make it to bedtime.

Charlotte was a great sleeper from about 2 months on (consistent long naps and sleeping through the night) so mama is TIRED right now. I haven’t sleep for more than 5 hours at a time in 6 months, phew! But somehow I’m functioning still!

Stats:

Height: 28 1/6″ (98th percentile)

Weight: 16lbs 3.5oz (30th percentile)

Dude is long and lean like his daddy!

Cooper is a giggle box! He laughs SO much more than Charlotte ever did and I love it. I know this sounds silly but I prayed for a baby that would belly laugh and I’m so thankful I got one! There is nothing more sweet or more contagious than a baby laugh.

Cooper has his two bottom teeth and I’m pretty sure he’s working on more, though I’m not sure which ones yet.

Eating:

Breastfeeding is still going really well. I am SO thankful I made it to my original goal of 6 months exclusively breastfed. I did not breastfeed Charlotte (not by choice) and I was determined to make it work this time. I fought through latch issues, thrush, having to exclusively pump for 2 months, and somehow we made it through! I pray that we can continue breastfeeding to a year. I plan on doing a whole different breastfeeding post later (men you might want to skip that one!).

We introduced solids to Cooper at around 4 1/2 months (organic oatmeal) and have since added in many fruits and veggies. He loves shredded cheese, baked potatoes, and has a good appetite. Doesn’t care for apple for some reason (?)

Wearing:

He is wearing size 3 diapers! He is in mostly 9 month clothes but we can still squeeze a few 6 month items on him.

Cooper prefers me, pretty much all of the time. He loves his sister and daddy but will only be content with them for a little while. He would snuggle and be held by me all day everyday if he could.

Cooper Mac, you are so very loved. I am thankful every second of every day for your life and what you’ve added to our family. Thank you for being you and for choosing me to be your mama.

Pregnancy #2, Weeks 15-24

Well, and just like that it’s been a month since I’ve blogged?! Holy moly guys! Life can get cray. I’m not sure how some of you blog DAILY! Anyway, here’s how the pregnancy has been going….

How far along are you? I’ll be 24 weeks this week, don’t know how that’s possible but it’s true!

My only recent bump picture

My only recent bump picture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s what the baby has been up to according to The Bump:

  • He is the size of a cantaloupe (feels about right).
  • He responds to my voice and touch (favorite part of being pregnant).

Total weight gain/loss: It’s weird to think that I’m 24 weeks and have only gained 5 pounds, although, I’m SO not going to complain about that!!!

Sleep: Sleep hasn’t been too bad, it’s as good as pregnancy sleep can be I guess. I have crazy dreams, have to pee a ton, and my hips hurt but it’s all for a good reason 🙂

Best moment lately: Our 20 week ultrasound was the best day ever! We had my mom and Brent’s mom in the room with us and it was a really special time. Finding out this little nugget is a boy just like I’ve felt from the beginning was such an amazing experience. I’m so excited for this little man!

Miss Anything: Honestly, I miss intense workouts, not getting winded walking up stairs, and my wine!

Maternity Clothes: Oh yeah! I truly have a love for maternity pants, they make me happy.

Movement: He is a WILD man! I’m a little freaked out to think about how intense his movements will be get the further along I get, but man do I love feeling him move. He already has awake times that I can predict which is really cool.

Food Cravings: I wouldn’t say that I have any cravings really, although I could always go for sushi or Chipotle!

Anything making you sick: I’ve had a cold or two and when I’m not feeling well with the cold my morning sickness comes back, it’s lovely. But thank you Jesus I’m not sick everyday anymore.

Gender: BOY! So happy! Baby brother is going to be the perfect addition to our family.

Symptoms: Really just feeling bigger and get a little more tired than usual.

Looking forward to: I’m looking forward to the Holiday’s! We have family coming to town for Thanksgiving and this time of year is in general my favorite. Getting to share Thanksgiving and Christmas with Charlotte is so fun and thinking of getting to do this with brother too makes me giddy. Oh, and my glucose test, ha! JUST KIDDING!

How is big sister: Charlotte is already such a wonderful big sister, she prays for baby brother, and asks/talks about him often. We are getting ready to upgrade Charlotte’s bedroom furniture. She’s going to get a true big girl bedroom set so we can convert Charlotte’s bed back into a crib and move her dresser into brothers room.

This pregnancy is such a joy to me and our family. Brent and I are so excited to add a boy to our family dynamic, although, we are kinda nervous too! I realized that I don’t really know how to be a boy mom! Everything will be so different than it was with Charlotte which is cool but also a little scary. Thanks for reading this update! I’ll probably post one or two more before this little boy gets here!!

Love to you all!

 

 

 

Pregnancy #2 Weeks 1-15

I’m planning on sharing some details about this pregnancy as the weeks go on but I’ll probably break it up into a few week chunk at a time. I’ve always loved reading pregnancy updates so I hope you guys will enjoy this too!

How far along are you? 15 weeks! Into my second trimester already! Please excuse the no makeup, full of sunscreen, about to go to the pool picture below.

IMG_4723Here’s what baby is up to according to The Bump:

  • Baby is the size of a navel orange!
  • Baby has fingerprints
  • Baby is already forming vocal cords and teeth!

Total weight gain/loss: I’m down 2 pounds still, I’ve been super sick this time around.

Sleep: Sleep has not been my friend. Between extreme hip pain and having to go to the bathroom I don’t sleep well. But my amazing husband bought me a Snoogle and it’s life changing.

Best moment this week: Feeling the baby move! He/She is on the left side of my belly and I feel the movements in the mornings and nights (probably the only two times I can sit and really pay attention to the tiny movements).

Miss anything? This may sound shallow but alcohol. With the pumpkin beers starting to hit the shelves, I’ve been missing being able to indulge in a drink of two here and there.

Maternity clothes? Yep….pretty much since week 6. The bump is large and in charge and maternity clothing is so comfortable!

Movement? Yes and it’s wonderful

Food cravings: Food and I do not get along at the moment. Nothing ever sounds good, going to the grocery store is my worst enemy. Food just overall makes me sick, so I wouldn’t say I have any cravings right now, just things I can tolerate. Although I did get a random craving for Pasta Roni (gross) which I haven’t had since college, because it’s not even real food haha!

Anything making you queasy or sick? Um….everything?! But really…..

Gender: If I was to guess I would say boy, just based on how I’m feeling. This pregnancy has been completely different from my pregnancy with Charlotte. Plus one morning I woke up calling the baby the boy name we have picked out. Charlotte has said it’s a baby brother since day 1, we will find out soon!

Symptoms: Fatigue, this may sound weird but I normally hate to nap, I think it’s a waste of time. However, lately when Charlotte lays down for nap I’m down for the count. I nap probably 5 of the 7 days a week because I truly cannot not nap. My hip pain at night is really bad and since I’m in my second trimester I can no longer sleep on my back. I have to get up at night and walk around to relieve the pain in my hips. I also have been super sick. I never experienced morning sickness with Charlotte so this is a whole new experience for me. However, it’s all day everyday sickness for me….yuck. But to be honest, I’m just really focusing on being thankful that I am able to carry another beautiful baby in my body, and if that means being sick for awhile than I’ll endure it 🙂

Happy or moody most of the time: I would say happy! I haven’t cried that often (except at a chick flick the other night, haha!)

Looking forward to: Finding out the gender of this sweet baby

Fitness update: Because I’ve been so sick I haven’t done much working out. Last week was when I started adding fitness back into my routine. I’ve been doing a prenatal workout each morning and it’s been great.  Just trying to stay healthy and active for this little munchkin!

How is this pregnancy different than with Charlotte: With Charlotte I had extreme fatigue, like falling asleep on the couch at 6:30pm fatigue. I haven’t had that type of fatigue this pregnancy, which I’m okay with since I have a toddler to chase around! With Charlotte I didn’t experience morning sickness or food aversions but  this time I’ve been so sick, and it hasn’t been enjoyable. I’m truly sick all day everyday and struggle to find any type of food that sounds good to me. I’m trying to make sure I’m still eating balanced and healthy for this baby but some days it’s hard to not just eat toast for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner.

 

Thanks for reading about how our little peanut is doing! Hope you’re having a great week!!

A BIG Announcement!!!

So lately I’ve been having a challenge finding the time to blog, and for a very good reason. I’ve been really sick, tired, and…….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GROWING A BABY!

That’s right folks Charlotte is going to be a big sister and we are beyond stoked.

Big Sister!

Big Sister!

IMG_4464

Funny story….

After we found out we were expecting a baby we told Charlotte she was going to have a baby brother or sister, not really thinking she would understand or even remember. I took Charlotte to summer camp and when I went to pick her up the teacher pulled me aside. She excitedly said “Oh! Charlotte told us all about her baby brother and that you are going to name him Jesus!” Where does she get that haha??!

She has been extremely excited and sweet, she touches and kisses my belly all the time and asks when the baby is coming out, ha! Not for a LONG time, sister!

Amazing detail at only 7 weeks!

Amazing detail at only 7 weeks!

Baby Erickson is due March 3rd and we cannot wait to love on this new addition to our already amazing family. We feel so extremely blessed for the opportunity to have another child.

More details tomorrow……

God is so good!

My Favorite Natural Baby and Natural Cleaning Products

 

My Favorite Natural Baby and Natural Cleaning Products

 

Unfortunately, there is a high number of toxins found in many baby, beauty and cleaning products. I have been on a journey for the past six years or so to reduce the number of toxins coming into my home and our bodies. My passion for this grew once we had our daughter Charlotte, I want to protect her from any harmful chemicals that could be lurking in common baby and household products. I have composed a list of my favorite “natural” items that I use on a daily basis and thought I would share with my lovely readers just in time for spring cleaning 🙂

  • Baby Products

This bubble bath is the best I’ve found and I’ve tried many. I love the calming lavender scent, how well the bubbles hold up throughout bath and how long this bottle lasts! I use either one or two capfuls depending on how quickly we need to get Charlotte to bed!

bubble bath

 

My all time favorite baby shampoo/body wash is this. The smell is intoxicating and the ingredient list is something I like. We have used this product since Charlotte was born. I’ve tried samples of others and always come back to this one, we also use the same lotion that comes in this collection.

shampoo and body wash

 

Once Charlotte’s hair started to get long we needed to add conditioner into her bathing routine. This honest company conditioner is my favorite so far and really gets the tangles out of her hair.

I made most of Charlotte’s baby food from scratch, however, in a crunch I really like Earth’s Best baby foods

The wipes I found to be the most cost effective and equally natural are Pampers Sensitive Wipes

wipes

 

Once Charlotte turned one she started drinking whole milk, and Horizon’s Organic Whole Milk +DHA Omega3 is what we started giving her.

milk

Once she started drinking Whole milk I also started adding probiotics to her milk. I firmly believe in the health benefits of probiotics. RAW Probiotics for kids is what we use.

RAW Probiotics

When Charlotte is stuffy from a cold or feeling a little under the weather we like to use some coconut oil mixed with Breathe DoTerra essential oil and it really helps clear up her congestion to help her sleep at night. I rub it on her chest and back and some on the bottom of her feet.

In this house we are a huge fan of Zarbee’s Natural’s products, Charlotte loves her vitamins and asks for them each morning. When I feel as though she has been exposed to a sickness or that her immune system is down this added immune support is what we use. If she does end up getting sick (which obviously happens) we use this cough medicine and it works wonders! There is also a night time version that has some melatonin added which we love as well.

ChildCoughSyrup_Marquee_2732x1725 ChildElderberryGummy_Marquee_2732x1725 Toddler_HoneyMultivitamin

 

If she ends up getting something that is a little worse than just a cough we start using Hyland’s products, we use this for overall cold symptoms and it seems to work very well. They also has a night time version that has helped Charlotte get rest even when she has a bad cold.

4kids-cc-night 4kids-cold-n-mucus

 

I also really enjoy using natural cleaning products throughout our house, we switched over about six years ago and I haven’t looked back. I’ve tried a lot of natural cleaning products and below is a list of my favorite’s…

  • Cleaning Products

I truly love Method cleaning products and use them for most everything in my house. When we built our house we purchased a stainless steel fridge and I knew going into it that fingerprints would be an issue. I love this cleaner for many reasons, the smell (yum!), how well it works, and how long the tiny bottle has lasted us so far. For a general all purpose cleaner I use this, we use the lavender scent though they have many different options and all of them smell luscious. My favorite floor cleaner, seriously. I’m so glad I found this product, it’s ridiculously easy to use (you literally squirt and mop) and the almond smell is my favorite scent in this line. This cleaner also comes in a smaller spray version for cleaning wood tables, blinds, anything wood in your home. If you were to ask my daughter, this soap is her favorite! Anything that foams is awesome in her book and mine too. It might just be a mind thing but I feel like the foam does a better job covering her whole hand (since she insists on doing everything herself these days) and that makes me reassured her hands are really getting clean. Last but certainly not least we use this laundry detergent and once again I love the scent, how long it lasts and how easy it is to use. So all that to say, use Method products and you won’t be sorry!

4x-laundry-ginger-mango 10oz_HW_Foaming_HibiscusFlower 12oz_specialtyspray_steelforreal 25oz_squirtmop_wood_for_good APC_Lavender

 

For things that need a really good scrub (toilets, showers, bathtubs, etc) I love Mrs. Meyers surface scrub. I grew up in a home that used Comet and I was determined to find a natural version of this type of cleaner.

lavender-surface-scrub

For our dish washing needs we really like this automatic dish gel and this rinse aid. The combination of these two makes for some really clean dishes!

automatic dish detergent rinse aid

 

Well I think it’s safe to say that I covered most every baby/toddler and cleaning product that we use in our home. I hope this list will be helpful to you in your journey towards using natural products in your home.

Please tell me some of your favorite natural products…

 

 

Gifts For New Parents They Don’t Know They Need

Est. 1989Becoming a parent is a monumental event in one’s life that deserves proper preparation. I remember when I was pregnant with Charlotte I was so overwhelmed by the many different types of bottles, diapers, toys, cribs, it was so hard to make a decision on what would be best for our daughter. So if you have a friend who is expecting a baby sometime soon I have some suggestions for gifts that they may not even know they will need/want. I am by no means an expert but these are things that would have been helpful after having our daughter.

 

  1. A white noise machine-I preferred using a three-in-one white noise, humidifier, and night light. We still to this day use this every single night. There is a button to have a backlight which we use has Charlotte’s night light. We also have the white noise running during nap and at night on a low setting. Babies are used to noise in the womb, most parents want to make an environment that’s quiet believing that will create a better sleep environment. The opposite is true, babies like some noise and white noise is the perfect option for the new baby. white noise
  2. A nipple shield-Sorry if this is TMI but it’s so important to mention. If the mother plans on breastfeeding this is a big learning journey she is embarking on. I wish I had known about nipple shields and their benefits after I had Charlotte. We had trouble latching in the hospital and I only learned about the nipple shield days later with a lactation consultant. nipple shield
  3. Gift cards to the parents favorite coffee shops and restaurant (preferably take-out). The lack of sleep isn’t anything anyone can ever prepare for, it’s tough. Coffee always helps, really. Family and friends will (hopefully) give the new parents freezer meals for the first week or so for them to survive off of, but that week will come and go. Gift cards for the restaurants give the parents a little more of a grace period before they need to start cooking meals for their growing family.

    The magically drink that gives parents super powers ;)

    The magical drink that gives parents everywhere super powers 😉

  4. A free house cleaning! It’s a tough transition for a family to make whether it’s their first or fifth child and housework gets put on the back burner. Scheduling a cleaning service to help the new parents out is incredibly helpful. Having a fresh clean house can help relieve some of the new parent pressures and challenges.
  5. A really good swaddle blanket-Swaddling Charlotte correctly and consistently was a life saver for my husband and I. I really recommend one that has a zipper or Velcro (keeps those ninja babies from escaping!). Babies are used to be in a tight space and don’t usually love having “free” limbs while trying to sleep. Babies also have something called the startle reflex which makes babies jump and their limbs go flying which wakes them up. Swaddling helps keep the limbs from flying and is more likely to help keep them asleep during and after the reflex. swaddle
  6. Clothing that is anything but newborn or 0-3 month sizes. Some babies are born so big that they truly don’t even fit in newborn clothing and then they grow so quickly that they are soon in bigger clothes and you have none. Everyone thinks it’s so fun and cute to gift the teeney tiny clothes (they are super cute) but it’s really unpractical. The new parents will greatly appreciate having clothing for when their child gets bigger because it can get expensive clothing a growing baby.

    Little girls love clothes!

    Little girls love clothes!

  7. Diapers-I was truly amazed at the amount of diapers a tiny human could actually go through in a day. Help the new parents out by padding their diaper stock, if you are unsure what brand they like-ask! *Wipes are also super helpful, Charlotte is 2 1/2 and we still use wipes for things daily*
  8. Bibs and burp cloths-You truly cannot have enough of either, this will save the new parents from having to do laundry every day! They will thank you later…
  9. Extra set of sheets-Refer to #8, the less laundry needing to be done the better. It’s never fun to not have a backup sheet for the bed when it gets soiled at 1am.
  10. Last but not least offer to babysit so the new parents can have a date night!! A husband and wife switch to being parents in an instant and it can sometimes be a tough transition. Offer to let the parents go get a cup of coffee together or a meal, it can be an hour or three-whatever the parents are comfortable with. In my experience the new parents aren’t gone too long the first time away from the baby but having someone they trust to leave the baby with is so valuable.