Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Cooper: 11 Months



He is turning into such a little boy! 
I keep waiting for the month where he won't lay on the blanket for pictures but he might be the most cooperative guy ever! Noah was always too busy to be bothered with a picture (hence most of my pictures of Noah are of him on the move). 
Height & Weight - 22+ lbs. No length measurement until the big 1 year check up next month.
Hi! I get this smile every time I peek around the stroller and say hi to him! 
Eating - Not a whole lot of progress here (although tonight he ate about 3 teeny tiny bites of hot dog and we pretty much hit the roof with excitement). He still has his funny food aversions and prefers the standard rotation of all things crunchy with a little yogurt, squeezies & formula thrown in. 
He tried some Fro Yo. He was pretty unimpressed. That said, it was Blueberry Tart (Noah's choice) so I can't really blame him. We'll try some Birthday Cake flavor next time, buddy! 
One fairly hilarious part of his pickiness is just how picky he is. We finally got him to eat Macaroni & Cheese. Turns out, he will eat Annie's Rotini & White Cheddar Cheese Sauce...only. Any other way, shape, or form of pasta need not apply. A shell? Forget it! Funny, yet frustrating all at the same time. 
Nana scored this meal. Wrong pasta choice. 
I mentioned formula. He takes 6-8oz. before each nap/bedtime and usually a 4oz. sometime between 3am and 6:30am depending on the night. He is going to miss his beloved formula when the regular milk moves in next month (we, however, will not miss paying for it)!
Mmmmmm, the approved spiral pasta. (Please note those teeth for a note a little later).
Sleeping (naps) - Rock.star. We actually have to wake him half the time because he would sleep 3 hour stretches if we let him. He takes a great morning nap daily at 8:30 or 9am (1.5-2 hours) and again in the afternoon around 2 or 2:30. We wake him by 4pm each day and try to make 3 hours his maximum daily total or we risk a 5am wake up the next day. 
Not really much guessing when it comes to knowing when he is tired. Paci, bear, snuggle. 
A fairly hilarious reality around here...every time we walk Noah falls asleep and Coop just babbles along the whole way! 
Same deal, different day! 
Sleeping (night) - Pretty good. We still haven't buckled down and gotten rid of night feedings. Honestly, they are so quick it almost doesn't seem worth it. It is never more than one 4oz. bottle and sometimes it isn't until 5 or 6 in the morning. It may be the kiss of death but I am kind of in a "wait and see" mood with this to see what happens when we switch him off formula. 


Precious baby. 


Paci. Bear. Snuggle! Haha! 
Clothing - 12-18 months! Even a size 2 here and there (admittedly, the ones that run a little small). He is quite the big guy which is so fun and different from big brother! 
Yep, your heart just exploded too.
New This Month - Standing without holding on. I swear he could walk if he would just take that first step but he has zero interest. If you try to make him stand when he doesn't want to, he turns his body into an L and refuses to do anything but sit. 
A little bit of a creeper smile but he is a standing machine. 
Teeth. He has cut some major chompers with a couple more on the way! 
Teeth picture above. Pretty sure those eyes will get him a Lady or two ;-). 


First Easter this month. He was pretty unimpressed by the whole thing and wanted everything in Noah's basket anyway! 
Coop also finally starting babbling his consonant sounds and even says "car" from time to time. It was like one day he could just say "ba ba ba, ma ma ma, ga ga ga, da da da, ya ya ya, ca ca ca"! He can also flip his tongue over which is fairly funny to watch a baby do. Neither Scott nor I can do it!! 
Not the tongue flip, but funny nonetheless. He also loves climbing up in Noah's anywhere chair. 
Cooper Likes - Baths. Music Class. People (kids especially). Snuggling (oh, the snuggles, he is sooooooo snuggly). Being chased (his favorite game is crawl as fast as possible towards Nana's water bowl!). Books. Everything. He is just the happiest guy ever and we are so lucky to have a baby with such an amazing disposition who just wants a leg to pull up and stand by! 
Gah! He just makes me so happy! 
One thing that I have to note is that coming home to Cooper might be the best thing ever. He is better than a puppy! It doesn't matter if you leave for 2 minutes or 2 hours, the reception when you walk in the door is seriously pure thrill to see you again. 
Snuggles with Brother. 
Cooper Dislikes - Having his nose/face/hands wiped. He seems you coming and flails/wiggles/fights with every ounce of his little body. It is quite dramatic. 
Apparently sand isn't a favorite either! 
 Nor the bunny!
We also almost made it an entire month without croup but it snuck up on us Friday night. #5 for anyone keeping count. I have given up hoping that a runny nose won't eventually be croup. C'est la vie! 
Croup can't keep this smile away! 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Cooper: 10 Months



Height & Weight - 
Still about the same as last month. 20-21 lbs.  
Love this little face. 


Eating - We are still dealing with some texture and food aversions here but have made a little bit of progress. The number one success is that he likes granola bars! It is so great to watch him actually get some quality calories in him. The main challenge here is finding bars without honey though. Slim pickins! I will say I am worried slightly less about it as each day it seems he is willing to try something new so we are hopefully making some slow & steady progress. 

Yep, this is our world. For the record, there was chicken nugget, macaroni, and vegetables on this tray! 

He takes his bottles like a champ. On average 4, 6oz. bottles daily. I have to imagine when we drop the formula he will pick up a bit on the solid food eating, too! 

Quesadilla was approved at the airport on the trip home! WOO HOO! 

Sleeping (naps) - Business as usual here although we need to start limiting naps to 3 hours total daily. Coop started waking between 5 & 6am for the day which means he was getting a little too much daytime sleep! 

Not the preferred napping method but I'll take anything on the airplane! 

Sleeping (night) - We made some great progress here (which was all demolished by traveling and sickness)! I talked with our pediatrician and decided that instead of crying it out, we were going to wean him off his nighttime bottle so he wasn't freaking out about not getting the calories. We were down to 2oz. of formula! One more week and we probably would have been finished. BUT, we went to St. Louis for a wonderful getaway, he got sick, add the time change, and we had some seriously awful nights. There were a couple of 2 hour stretches of him just being awake at night :-(. So, we will begin the process again and this time I KNOW it will stick since we have zero travel coming up. 

The zoo was not impressive ;-).

Clothing - 12-18 months. 12 months is even a bit snug! He can still fit into some 6-12 month pants but for the most part he is truly almost a 1 year old! 

We finally put some shoes on him. They lasted about 15 seconds! 

New this month - Pulls up like CRAZY and can get himself back down (hallelujah!!). He still is very hesitant to take any steps even when we hold his hands but he has gotten pretty adept at getting whatever he needs/wants! 

This was the scene before he figured out how to get back down.  He would stand up, get stuck, and scream until someone rescued him. Amazing at 3am. 
We also got our first taste of stranger anxiety. He was a little wary of new people in St. Louis and much preferred Mom, Dad, Grandma, and Papa. 
Granola bar! We apparently get really excited and document every new food he will eat!
We also popped a front tooth. It isn't visible from afar yet but it finally broke through! Three more are right on its heels. 


Cooper Likes - Everything! Well, except most foods! He is really the happiest guy around. He loves people, Noah still being his favorite, music (he dances the minute it comes on), snuggling, the carousel, baths, and a million other things. It is pretty hard to disrupt this little guys mood. 

There was music playing too so it was double the fun! 
He really enjoys splashing as much as possible in an attempt to both eat the water and flood the kitchen! 
I can't get enough of this picture! 

Cooper Dislikes - I sound like a broken record. Croup & another ear infection greeted us in St. Louis. I blame big brother as he ended up on antibiotics two days before we left. I guess this is what to expect with a second baby when big brother brings home zillions of germs from all his activities. 

This was visit #2. It isn't a trip to St. Louis without spending some quality time at Urgent Care. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Cooper: 9 Months

Still the happiest guy around!
Height & Weight
Height - 29.5" (75th percentile)
Weight - 20lbs. 11oz. (between 50 & 75th percentile)
Head -  48cm (off the charts! love his cute little giant noggin!)

This is a face we see a lot right now. I think it has something to do with his top teeth coming in!
Eating -Pickiest.eater.ever. He has some crazy tactile responses to food. If I had to leave instructions for someone else to feed him it would sound absolutely crazy. "Baby food first, then he will refuse to eat any more but still scream at you, give him something crunchy (apparently he plans to live on crackers, but not Cheerios because, whoa, they are apparently poison), when he starts yelling at you again, try more baby food, no?, ok, drink of water, yes?, ok, more crunchy...". You see where I am going with this. And heaven forbid you give him avocado, banana, macaroni, etc. He can eat Goldfish like they are nothing but the aforementioned list makes him gag...that is if you can even get him to open his mouth for it. Sigh...
Deciding whether bagel is even remotely an option (verdict...no way).
He takes his bottles like a champ. On average 4, 6oz. bottles daily. But, when he's done, he's done. Such a stinker!
The boy does love his pizza crusts!
Sleeping (naps) - Business as usual here. Rocking two solid naps. One between 8:30 & 9:30am (lasts about 2 hours) and one in the afternoon sometime between 1 & 2 (another 2 hours).
Oh, hey there!
Sleeping (night) - No real change here either. Coop goes down for the night at 7 and wakes sometime around 4am for a 6oz. bottle and then back to sleep until 7am. He has surprised us by sleeping through the night twice this month. All the more reason to just drop that bottle...need to muster up some strength to let my happy boy cry a bit :-(.
I rarely actually get to see him asleep since he refuses to be rocked to sleep. Such a sweet little guy!
Clothing - Definitely out of 6 month clothes and pushing the limits on 6-9 month clothes. He is officially wearing clothes Noah wore at 1+. One thing we have a little trouble with is his giant noggin. Shirts that go over his head are a bit tough to get on/off! 
Coopie on the left, Noah on the right (Noah was only 7 months old so not an exact age comparison).
New this month - Nothing super remarkable but he does crawl super fast now, can pull up if he is super motivated, and loves to stand and play!
Here I come!!!
Look at me!
Cooper Likes - Mom. He has turned into such a Mama's boy. He gives the most amazing little snuggles and the moment I sit down on the floor he crawls into my lap and burrows his head in my stomach. When he is tired, he lays his head on my shoulder and it is absolutely heart melting. 
He really liked Disney on Ice!
Cooper Dislikes - When can Cooper start taking Greens?! Poor kid got croup, AGAIN!!!! He woke up from an afternoon nap with stridor so I high tailed it to the Urgent Care. Steroids + breathing treatment and a quick run by the ER (unnecessary trip in the end as by the time we got out of the waiting room the Dr discharged us)and he was on the mend. The breathing treatment was his first and hopefully his last. I don't think it did anything remarkable that the steroids don't do so I think I will pass next time if possible. He HATES to have his face touched so holding a mask on him for 10 minutes was agonizing for all of us. Fortunately we are all happy and healthy again!
over.it. Me, too, little buddy!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Adventures

Hi! Just thought a cute baby might be a good intro!
I thought it might be worthwhile to do a little (ha, if you know me you know that "little" and my blog post lengths are not synonymous) post about my new adventure I have taken on and how/why I reached the decision to join ItWorks. 
Check. Check. and there will be a GIANT check on the last one!
Let's go back to about this time last year...I started seeing posts pop up in my newsfeed of people's mid sections and a ton of before & after photos. These posts were coming from old high school friends I had lost touch with for the most part (with the exception of social media) and I just scrolled on by. But, the posts kept coming, they kept telling the world about different products, and the money they were starting to make. 
Many posts like these!
I'll be honest. There were plenty of not-so-nice sentences to come out of my mouth:

"These posts are so annoying!!" (it took me .1 seconds to scroll past...not really such an inconvenience)

"Oh, wow, diamond, ruby, emerald, seriously?!"(is it so different than assistant, manager, VP? why did I let this bother me?!)

"They know this is water weight, right?" (wrong. it isn't. you are encouraged to drink extra water while wrapping.)

"How tacky to talk about money online?" (maybe it is, but it sure is motivating. it made me want to join in!)

We swear by our greens at our house!
"These people are clearly tied up in a pyramid scheme" (I should have googled what a pyramid scheme actually is. This is a multi level marketing company that allows you to make money through a very legitimate and smart business model)

BUT, I was buying the product! I was actually using and loving the products they were selling but still being catty about it. Maybe it was because I wanted to join in but was too nervous? I don't know, but I kept watching. I watched as my acquaintances took this business by storm. I felt envious of their bonuses! I thought about taking the leap and joining in, but then I chickened out. I had a million excuses:

"I am not a sales person" (I did PR and advertising for 7 years. I also simply talk to people in my day to day life! No need to be a sales person, just a need to believe in the products and be willing to tell others.)

"My circle of friends is so spread out, I won't be successful" (Even better! New markets are amazing. And I have friends who are very influential in their circles. I wasn't looking at the bigger picture.)

"No one will want to do this with me" (Why not, do people not like money?!) 

"I don't want to annoy people" (Again, they can scroll on by...but guess what, they are watching, just like I was for a YEAR!!!)

"I am trying to spend less time on social media, not more" (I really don't spend any more time than before. I do it when my kids are napping or asleep. It is my schedule!)

"I don't need the money" (See below. But, really?!?!?!)

Some of the above are comical! Who doesn't "need" money? I mean, really, extra money isn't something anyone ever declines, right?! But, I added that to my list and kept watching.

And watching...
Yep, these numbers are legit!
And watching...

Finally, Scott gave me the push I needed. He made the statement, "what do we have to lose?". And he was right. I could keep piling up the excuses, but why not just try? If it didn't work out, we quit. No big deal. Except, it could be a really big deal if we succeed. 

So, we made the call to Lauren. I expressed a lot of my concerns that I listed above. And she helped me feel so much more at ease. She reminded me that people post stuff on Facebook all the time that I don't care about (i.e.-What Saved by the Bell character would you be?!). She educated me on the products, payment structure, company history, and opportunity at hand. By the end of that call I was excited. Nervous, but excited. So we dove in. 
This was a pretty good motivator to join! And you can get in on this action too!
And that brings us to now. I am still navigating how I want to run my business. Because, at the end of the day, that is what I have learned. This is my business. I have a wonderful support team and so many wonderful tools at my disposal to make this successful, but I get to choose how I want to run it. I don't have to post anything on social media if I don't want. So I am making my own goals, rules, and game plan. A few things on my list:

Double my investment this year. This should be something I can do in my sleep. But, it is a goal nonetheless. There is so much opportunity and I intend to seize it! And let's be honest, I hope this is a goal I am laughing at in a year! 

No posts on Instagram. As I said, I get to run this my way. I like sharing pictures of my family and links to my blog on Facebook. And I also think it is a fantastic tool for building my business. BUT, Instagram is a very personal thing to me. I post a lot more pictures of my family, keep my account private, and feel very protective over it. Everyone I am friends with on Instagram, I am friends with on Facebook, or wouldn't mind sending a quick email to about ItWorks! So I have decided that my Instagram feed will remain my "personal" space...separate from my business. This is my personal choice...many of my team members utilize Instagram for their business and I know they see success there...but, again, we get to make our own rules!

Educate. This is what I failed to do for myself and something I want to offer to my friends and family. I want them to understand this business. Know that we use, love and believe in the products. Know that they could be successful in this too! I want to be transparent about what I'm doing and how it works. The company wants me to do this, too. So I am trying to take my message away from just status updates and make sure that I am reaching out to people to help them understand the life changer this can be from a health and financial standpoint. 

I know, it sounds like I have been "drinking the kool-aid". But, as soon as I dove in, I got what all the "hoo-rah" was about. There is a lot to be excited about here. I didn't think I would like having a "job" again. But, I actually feel empowered. It is nice to feel like I am contributing to the family. It will be amazing when we hop on a plane for a family vacation we weren't expecting to take because of something I did...on my own time, with my own schedule, in my own home, on my terms. I haven't had to sacrifice time with my kids, and in fact, I have found myself more on top of everything on my to-do list since joining the company. I feel motivated to sit down and tackle my personal list and my business. 

Ok, this is not short...it never is with me. I have a lot to say about this company and I haven't even really started in on the products. But, I'll save that for another time. Rest assured, this space will first and foremost remain a place for me to chronicle my kids and family life. It won't turn into my personal business page. But, this is a part of our life now so it will be shared as well! 
I mean, sign me up! Our Hair, Skin, & Nails arrives this week and I can't wait to get started growing my hair back out!

If you want to learn more, feel free to email me or check out my page www.stephrwraps.com!