Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Mikey likes it!

Yes, I just dated myself with that title.  If you don't know who Mikey is, he was a character on a tv commercial in the 1980's when I was little.  He was supposedly a picky eater who, of couse, ended up liking the cereal in the ad.  Now on to the real post.

Nola has eaten all of the following things:  apples, prunes, butternut squash, zucchini, yukon potatoes, sweet potatoes, mango, apricots, brown rice, bananas, carrots, green beans, peas, broccoli, quinoa, celery, and onions.  Oh, and oatmeal and rice cereal.  She's also had all of these spices/enhancements: cinnamon, thyme, cilantro, nutmeg, sage, ginger, lemon zest, organic vegetable broth, olive oil and garlic powder. So far, she loves absolutely everything.  I enjoy making the food too.

Last night, she had broccoli puree, which I believe I had added lemon zest too, with quinoa pilaf, which contained onions, celery, thyme, olive oil, and vegetable broth.  I actually made one batch for us and one for her.  I cut the vegetable broth in hers and did not add salt.  That child loved it! 

I am so proud of her.  She loves everything.  She hasn't snubbed anything.  After the next few days of broccoli, I have a beet and navy bean puree and spinach with green peas.  We'll see how those go.  I haven't introduced meat yet.  I know I need too, but I'd almost rather not.  I know she does need protein though. I haven't done my research yet, but I will soon.  I found a delicious recipe from Tyler Florence's book, Fresh Start, with turkey breast, cranberries, brown rice and sweet potatoes.  I will probably try that soon. 

Maybe it's a fluke and she would have eaten anything anyway, since both Aaron and I have always been good eaters, according to both our parents.  Either way, I'm glad she's tried so many things when she's only been eating solid food for about 2 months and I've been doing 3-4 days between new things.  I know, she'll go through a picky toddler stage and I'll be prepared for that, but you better believe it won't be McDonald's chicken nuggets and fries. Unless, someone sneaks that to her, she probably won't have any taste of that, hopefully until she's 18 and making her own decisions.   Even then, I hope she snubs her nose at it. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

Another year gone by

It's funny how you wake up on New Year's Day and it really does feel like a fresh start (or is that just me).  I feel revived and happy.   Bring on the new year, please.  I am ready for it.  2012 has a lot to live up to with all the blessings that 2011 bestowed on me.  You know me, I'm always trying to put positive energy out and it seems to work in my favor.  For that reason, I have no doubt that this year will exceed my expectations.

To be honest, I don't really remember last year's goals.  First time parenting really throws you for a loop, doesn't it?  I had no idea that my world would be flipped upside down.  Ah, sweet naivety.  Usually I will repost last year's goals and go over how I accomplished the goals or how I fell short with a reason to back it up, but I don't want to do that this year.  Last year was the year of Nola.  That's all that matters. 

This year's goals all came to me without any effort of thinking about them and pondering what I should for the year.  They are things that I want to work on or do regardless of whether it's January or the beginning of the new year.  So without further ado, here is what I hope the year has in store for me.

  1. Bring healthy back.  This means lose the pesky 3 or 4 pounds that I have left from having Nola, exercise more, and return to eating better.  During my pregnancy, I may have only gained 26 pounds, but I was not eating so well towards the end.  You guys, remember my reeses peanut butter cup and Dr. Pepper love.  Well, I'm still drinking Dr. Pepper, where as, before I rarely drank them.  In 2009, I vowed to cut out sodas from my diet and I went 6 months without drinking a single one.  I haven't been eating well lately either, I feel bloated and just ugh.  The good thing about living a pretty healthy lifestyle is when you lose your way your body doesn't like it one bit.  It helps to keep you more accountable.  Also, I want to start exercising again.  I was walking and jogging before I got pregnant and have only gone a handful of times since having Nola.  I'm contemplating doing a 21 day cleanse, but not being able to have caffeine scares me a little.  Plus, I had to give it up for 9 months, I finally get to enjoy my coffee again.  Granted, it is only 21 days.  Anyways, I'm not going to deprive myself, so if I want the dang cheeseburger and fries, I'll eat it, but I am going back to my old ways of eating better and getting the ol' muscles working again.  For the record, I'm drinking a Dr. Pepper as I type this.  Baby steps, people, baby steps.
  2. Make or buy all my gifts for throughout the year early.  This is still fresh on my mind because Christmas had me running around days before trying to finish up my shopping.  That is so how I don't usually do things. I usually pick things up throughout the year when they are on sale and am finished shopping early.  I usually keep a running tab of who's birthday is next, so that I can buy the gifts a month or two ahead.  I already have a good start.  We started a tradition this year of the three of us getting pajamas to open on Christmas Eve.  I've already bought all three of our pajamas for next year.  They were all on clearance too!  It stresses me out to not be prepared for things, which brings me to my next goal.
  3. Get organized again.  I don't know how I'm going to do this or don't really have a plan, but I need to do something.  After panic attacks started rearing their little dirty little heads again, I vowed I had to do something.  Things have gotten better.  I still can't get a handle on all the errands and housework.  How do you other moms do it?  It has gotten better now that Nola doesn't want me to hold her 24/7, but I still need to get an even better grip on things.  I still do my meal plans, which are helpful, but I guess I need a schedule or to start doing my daily lists again to stay on top of things.  
  4. Back to the budget.  You all know I'm thrifty, but I think I'm going back to budgeting more.  Meaning, checking sales papers and going to the store with the cheapest prices.  Making sure I have my coupons handy, even when it comes to going out to dinner.  Basing my meal plan on what meats and things are on sale.  I want to put more in savings and save towards doing some sprucing up to the house.  I've already started this one too.  I've picked up quit a few things for Miss Nola for next year.  Let's hope she stays on track as far as clothing fitting her based on her age.  Plus, I'm trying to meal plan based on what I already have at home.  My pantry is too full.  No, I'm not bragging on that one!  
  5. Spruce up this house.  Well, since I'll be budgeting and saving, it's definitely the year to to do this!  We have too many half finished projects.  It's so annoying to me.  I want to try to focus on one room and then finish it and then move on.  This seems oddly familiar.  Was it on last year's list?  I'm too lazy right now to look.  We are FINALLY almost finished with Nola's room.  It has turned out remarkably just like I wanted it.  As soon as things are finished up, I'll post some pictures.  She is finally sleeping in there!  I must say, as much as I didn't want to move her up, it has really been the best thing.  She sleeps better, wakes up happier, and we can walk around our room and talk (amongst other things) in bed without worrying that we're going to wake up the baby that is snoozing right next to our bed.  On the list for this year is also replacing the carpets/flooring.  It is so time.  It's going to hit us in the financial area, but will be so worth it.  Now to try to talk Mr. O into hardwood on the first floor.  Bringing up the house, if I were moving right now, check out these two houses, mls 1301520 and 1328184 .  There are plenty of things I would change, like pastel walls, but they have pretty good bones to work with.  I especially like the first one.  I am definitely not a new construction kind of girl.
  6. Another O baby.  Yes, really.  Would I like to have more time in between them?  Yes, of course. The age of my eggs are hurrying things up a bit.  Yes, I know plenty of people of people older than me have perfectly healthy kids, but I can also plead the case for all the people my age or younger that have Down Syndrome babies or other birth defects.  Plus, do I really want to be like 50 when my child is in elementary school?  Hells to the no.  Some people may be fine with that and to each his or her own, but for me, time is of the essence.  We'll be trying later this year.  I haven't decided if I'll blog about the attempts or our treatments if we have to go that route again, which I'm hoping we won't have too and my body will get it together.  Maybe I will or maybe I won't, but there is another O baby on the horizon.  Seriously, have you seen my child?  How could we not have another?  Just so you know, I haven't been on birth control, since having Nola, but given the fact, that I was off of it for years and years and nothing happened, I'd rather take my changes than prohibit something that may be difficult to achieve.  You feel me?
All in all, not a bad list.  Short and simple and all necessary.  I have a good feeling about 2012.  Bring it on.

    Thursday, January 12, 2012

    Get your shopping on

    Just in case you or your family need some clothes, go to Old Navy. You can take an additional 30% off clearance prices. I scored 7 or 8 shirts and a jacket for Nola for next fall/winter, 2 shirts for my nephew Hayden, 2 pair of pajamas for Aaron, and a hoodie cardigan and shirt for me all for $80. Word!

    You can pretty much find a steal anywhere now on winter clothing. I bought Nola a red wool peacoat at Target for $8.08 for next year. They already have bathing suits out. Ugh. I don't even want to think about that yet.

    Oh yeah, if you have any littles at home, then stop in at Babies R Us. They don't have the best clothing selection, but for an additional 40% off their clearance prices, it's worth a look! I scored 5 or 6 shirts for Nola and a Carter's outfit. The shirts were $2-3 a piece and the outfit was $9. Can't bet that, especially with the incredibly growing girl.

    And no, I was not paid to write this post. I wish I was because I'd go back for more. Um, who am I kidding, I will be going back for more!

    The best nightlight

    Would it be wrong to leave the Christmas lights along our stairs' banister all year long? I'm going to miss the soft glow on my way to bed at night and their warm welcome when I get home from work. And yes, my Christmas decorations are still up. I'll be taking them down on Friday. Saddest day of the year.

    Monday, January 9, 2012

    Baby words

    Well, there has been lots of baby babble over in the O home.  For months and months, this child will carry on a conversation with you for ten minutes straight.  Granted, you have no idea what she's saying, but it so dang adorable. 

    Now, real words have happened.  She looked right at me and called me, "Momma," while we were in Gatlinburg in November.  That really was her first word.  Since then, I've only gotten her to say it a couple of times.  She's said, "Dada," but not really to Aaron.  The funny thing is over the last few days we think she's calling him Aaron.  It sounds just like it.  I don't call him Aaron usually, so I'm assuming, if it's really what she's saying, it must be from his parents and family being over during the holidays.  She looked right at him yesterday when he walked into the bonus room and said, "Aaron," all excited.  I'm working on getting her to say daddy or dada because Aaron really doesn't like her calling him by his name. 

    The best words came on Christmas Eve.  My mom and her evil  boyfriend were leaving our house.  My mom was waving and saying, "bye, bye," to Nola.  Nola raised her hand, which we've been working on waving, waved and said, "bye, bye."  At first, we all didn't think she really said it, then she waved and said it again.  It was amazing.  I'm telling you there is no better feeling than seeing your child learn something new.  Also that day, when handing her a doll, she said, "baby."  Plain as day.  She's said both since then, more so than momma or dada or Aaron.  Leave it to our child to be different and say other things besides our names.

    While writing this post, it made me think of one of my most vivid memories when my sister was little.  I'm pretty sure it was on Christmas Eve.  We lived in a little trailer and I was probably 4 or 4 1/2 years old and my sister was probably 1 or 1 1/2 years old.  We were sitting at the little kitchen table and in the midst of looking for Ruldolph's nose and lights that were moving in the sky (duh! Santa's sleigh), I remember pointing to things trying to get her to say them.  Most of them, she would say.  It was so exciting when she repeated, "Tree, bush, star, etc."

    It's funny because I have lots of memories from that time in my life.  I don't know why some ages stick out more in your mind than others.  I hope when I look back on this time I remember how exciting Nola's first words were.  I hope I remember that tiny hand going in the air and waving backwards, while saying, "bye, bye," and that it happened during the most magical time of the year.