Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wordless Wednesday ~ Ty's First Girlfriend

Ahhhh...young love! :)

Rave: NMNB Podcasts

You may have noticed a new link on my blog titled "New Moms New Babies".  Here's the back story on that.  When I was pregnant, both times that is, I was OBSESSED with the podcasts from the Pregtastic Ladies.  You can download their podcasts for free on ITunes, or listen to them right on your computer.  I used ITunes, then uploaded them onto my blackberry and used them when I was on the treadmill or doing my walks (here's my post about these awesome podcasts back when I was pg).  Now that I'm a mommy of two kids preschool age and under, I have a new obsession, the "New Moms New Babies" series of podcasts started by some pregtastic alums a while back.  These podcasts talk about topics for new moms, moms of multiples, moms of 2+, diapering, breastfeeding, behavioral issues, you name it.  They have a panel of moms on the podcasts each week, and often bring in an "expert" or two on the topic they are discussing.  You can download the podcasts on ITunes, or subscribe and automatically download them.  You can also listen to them on your computer.  I've been listening to their 'casts during my lunch at work while I'm attached to my pump.  I highly recommend getting on board!  Here's their website!  Now go enjoy both awesome podcasts!  :)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I'm Surviving...& Some Random Working Mommy Tips

Here's some advice for those mommies that plan to go back to work after having your baby...or maybe you're already a working mom.  Follow along with TAT and get some more great mommy advice!

I'm now officially a WORKING MOM of 2 kids and....I'm EXHAUSTED!  I've survived my first full week back, but just barely.  I'm deep into week 2, and starting to get things figured out.  So in honor of my new "status" as a full-time teacher, mom and wife...I've come up with my Working Mom's Bible: Rules to Make Life Easier.  I figure I'll add to it as I go, as I am not even close to a vet after a week.  Here goes:

1.  Streamline your routine.  Do as many things the night before as you possibly can.  I am an organization whore, so this is right up my alley.  The night before I do all of the following: wash pump parts and set up for morning pump session, lay out all new pump accessories needed for work, make sure coffee is ready in coffeemaker (just press "on" ready), lay out clothes for myself and T, pack B's bag and put in hub's car, make my lunch, pack gym bag (if needed) and put in my car, set up makeup on counter, have "reminder" list of things to not forget taped on garage door or bathroom mirror.
2.  Think one step ahead at all times.  I'm always multi-tasking when I get home.  If I go upstairs to change, I take all the dirty clothes from myself, B & T from the day and throw in the hamper and lay out the clothes for the next day, pjs/bath stuff for that night & makeup while I'm up there.  If I'm making dinner, I make my lunch at the same time, so as to condense the mess and time away from my kids.  If I go out for the mail, I take B's bag out to the car.  Always one step ahead.
3. Do as much mealprep beforehand as possible.  I like crockpot recipes, defrost meat ahead of time, prep extra chicken or rice on Monday for Wednesday's meal, plan leftovers for lunch, and always grocery shop on the weekend.  I also plan meals for the week, so I'm not scratching my head wondering what to make when I'm dead tired.
4. Workout, do chores or clean BEFORE you sit down on your couch.  You'll never get back up.  Nuf said.
5.  Let a few things go.  I just can't find time to clean during the week.  It's just not possible.  So I try not to let the nasty toilet that both boys use bother me so much (okay, it bothers me...but I'm not a superwoman...I just can't justify cleaning the toilets when I could be cuddling with my babies). 
6.  Keep your house as clean and organized as you can, but clean it up on Sunday night and try to maintain little things all week, don't do a big clean during the week.  I'm much happier when I come home after work and don't have a nightmare to walk into.  It's a routine of mine and hubs to pick up before we go to bed.  It keeps me sane.  My main part of my house is definitely picked up before bed.  My bedroom....well...that's another story ::blushes:: 
7.  Leave work, at work!  This is a hard one for me, especially as a teacher with lots of grading, but I have brought home work so many times and I just can't justify sitting down to grade when I could be playing with the kids or resting to recharge and be "on" for the kids the next day.  I am very efficient during my prep and before/after school, so I can leave that grading there (most of the time!) :)
8.  Encourage your childcare provider to send you updates/texts/pictures on days you can't be with your LO.  This helps me get through the day, especially when leaving a small baby.  My daycare also has cameras so I can check on T, if I feel the need.  It really brightens my day to get that picture text from my MIL and see B is happy and being loved!

Check back with the fam for more tips...
And if you feel like this...

you're not alone!  Hang in there!

Monday, August 29, 2011

What a Difference a Year Makes

A year ago this past weekend was the most amazing, yet most nerve-wracking few days of my life.  Read HERE for more specifics.  I THOUGHT I was pg...after all the below tests ::blushes::... 
but it was my first betas that finally confirmed it!  I was pregnant!!!  Now a year later, I have a 4.5 month old beautiful little girl.  I can't believe how much a year has brought to our family, and how I can't even imagine a time without her!

Here's B her first week home with us! 
After going through my SIF journey, read HERE for that short review, I am truly blessed for a year that has brought me all I ever dreamed of for so long! 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Semi-Wordless Wednesday ~ Nuk Saves the Day!

After trying countless new and "hip" binkies, to no avail, I stumbled upon a free classic NUK that I got in the mail when DS was a baby.  I thought, heck, I'll try anything to stop the shrieking!  And what do you know...
Five minutes later, she was fast asleep.  I'm not getting too excited just yet, but I'm sending the NUK to her Mimi's house, hoping it will work miracles for her as well, then I'll be running out to Target to get a few more!  Fingers crossed!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Milestone Monday

T started his new daycare this week, or "school" as we like to call it.  He will start his part-time preschool program at the beginning of September.  I'm happy to report, he seems very happy at his new school!
 B went to her first bday party...and even donned the party hat!  Happy 1st Birthday Liliana! 
 And another first, I'm now a WORKING MOM of TWO!  ::snif, tear:: I'm back at work after 4.5 months home with my babies.  I'm heartbroken, but I keep reminding myself I'm blessed to be able to be home with my kids during the summer, yet still bring home a paycheck so we can give them everything they'll ever want.  Oh how I miss these cute faces!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Milestone Monday

Besides our trip down to Myrtle, and quite an eventful trip on her first airplane, B had a big week!  We moved her to her crib and into her own room, just shy of 4 months.  Given this is probably our last baby, I cried like one!  The cradle is still set up by my bed.  I'm just not ready to accept it completely just yet :(  B, however, is doing great.  When I went in to wake her the first morning, she had her feet propped up and her hands behind her head, clearly doing just fine. 
 We have watched her fascination with her feet for a couple weeks now.  This week, B finally got those cute toes into her mouth. 
T also had a big week on vacation.  He is becoming such a big boy so fast!  Our little man conquered the boogie board, and was an ace in the ocean!  He also was an incredible swimmer this week, flipping both forwards and backwards in the water and diving down in the five feet to retrieve objects.  Quite the fish!   

Sunday, August 14, 2011

A Fast Four Months with B

Age: 4 months, and work is just around the corner!  I can't believe this time has come :(

Stats: 12lbs 2.5oz (20th percentile), 25" (80th percentile)...and three vaccines:(

Size (diapers, onesies, etc.): We just switched to size 2 diapers this past week, although if we find a random size 1 here and there, we still use it.  She is barely fitting in her 3 month clothes right now, but we've switched to a bunch of her 3-6 months already.

Sleeping: B is going to sleep earlier and earlier.  We used to have to wait until 11pm or after to put her down for any chance she would STTN.  This past week, she couldn't make it past 9:30pm, and she normally sleeps until about 6am.  We had a few rough nights this week, but I attribute that to the dreaded 4 month wake period.  We still are completely unsuccessful getting her to take naps in the PnP or crib/cradle, though.  She only naps in motion, or being held. 

Eating: Still EBF, and FOD (fed on demand), primarily.  Sometimes she goes 3-4 hours, other times, she wants to eat after 2.  I just do it when I feel like she needs to eat.  B is much different than T, in that way.  She also isn't fond of the bottle still.  Hopefully, Mimi can get her used to it.  Since I go back to work in 5 days (gulp) she will be forced to take BM through the bottle. 

Milestones: This month she mastered grabbing her feet, sucking her feet, and she laughed a true belly laugh for the first time.  We are also doing great sitting up in the bebepod.  She's super close to rolling over back to front.  I am starting baby signing with her this month, and will start cereal/oatmeal as well.

Memorable outings: B had her first plane rides this past week, when we took a trip to Myrtle Beach, SC.  She also went to the beach & ocean for the first time.  It was a big week. 

Favorite toys/activities: rings (I remember T loving these...such a simple toy), playmat, bebepod, and her feet.

Funny moments: I will elaborate these more in a post to come about traveling with baby, but I had to run (not jog) with B in the ergo to catch my connection (and it wasn't a pretty sight).  B also had an explosive poop while we were descending into Chicago on the way home, and as it seeped out her onsie, I had to make a decision.  I changed her right on my lap, as we landed.  It was quite a skill.  Thanks to my poor Dad for holding all the poopy remnants!  He gets props for that move!  I also had to eat a sub over B's head as she slept in the Ergo at the airport on a delay. 

Looking forward to:  Since I know work is inevitable, I am looking forward to "ripping off the band aid" and getting in a routine of being a working mommy of 2.  I know that sounds odd, as my heart is truly breaking thinking of having to leave her after being attached to her for 4 months, but I just need to get over the pain and emotional upheaval, and figure out how to deal. 

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Mommy Muscle Tip #2

Last week I started a new series about getting fit and healthy as a busy mommy.  As a working mommy of two, and a career runner, I think I've figured out a way to be successful.  How am I an "expert"?  I'm not!  But, check out my first "Mommy Muscle" post:  Tip #1:  Make Workout Time a Priority in Your Life, to hear my back-story. 

Tip #2 came from my experiences at the beach on our vacation this week.  I have to admit, I was dreading having to traipse around in my suit all week long in front of strangers.  I knew I wasn't back to my "original" self, and some of my mommy bits are still jiggling away.  After stretching my skin two times now, my skin hasn't exactly snapped back into place like it did after just T, my belly button is a funky shape, and don't get me started on my hips and saddle-bags.  Now I have to make myself clear here, because I am very blessed with good genes.  I am naturally a tall, thin person, and I'm blessed I have snapped back as well as I have thus far.  I also work very hard to stay fit, before, during and after my pregnancies.  I am a workout-aholic.  But...I enjoy it!  (I know, it's a illness)  However, I have started comparing myself to my former self.  This is a big no-no on the post baby body front.  I know this, but I have still fallen into the trap yet again.  So, from these unhealthy thoughts came...
Tip #2:  Don't You Dare Compare

As cheesy as it is, your body has just done an amazing and beautiful thing.  You have made life!  You have also put your body through a traumatic event.  Pregnancy and childbirth are HARD on your body!  It may not take 9 months to get it back, or it may take more, but looking like your pre-pregnancy self IS POSSIBLE!  However, you can't compare yourself to YOURSELF, or others. 

For you mommies of one, things will snap back faster.  For us mommies of 2+, we tend to compare ourselves to you.  It is a different experience recovering from the subsequent pregnancies. 

Unfortunately, some things might not return to "normal".  This is just a fact.  Your boobs after nursing will become deflated balloons, your hips might be more "womanly", your hair might fall out, residual skin blemishes (read stretchmarks, veins, ingrown hairs, etc) might not disappear. 

Here's the good news, you WILL feel like yourself again!  Once you get your body back completely, take ownership of it back 100% (after nursing is over and the baby becomes more independent), things will get better.  You may have to accept a new "normal", but it will be okay.

Just take my advice...DON'T YOU DARE COMPARE yourself to your former self (at least not yet) or to others. You will drive yourself crazy!!   

Here's me being bold...

Post T (he was 6 weeks old here)

  When T was 9 months old (remember it's after pregnancy #1 and clearly still nursing...hence the "girls")

22 months PP - finally myself (post nursing!)

Almost 3 years PP (and post training for a half-ironman & marathon)

Now (almost 4 months PP #2)...definitely still nursing (see those "girls" again) and my fab birthing hips and new more "womanly" shape. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wordless Wednesday ~ Fun with Sand

**Note** The Scherman Family Four are on vacay down south.  I'll update about our travels, etc...soon. 

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Sweetest Sound!

Yesterday, August 4th, B laughed for the first time!  It was the sweetest sound in the world, besides that of my son's belly laugh (which is equally tear-inducing).  I can't even take credit for getting her to laugh, that honor goes to T!  He was helping my hubby bathe her last night, and getting a kick out of it himself.  When he laughed, there it was...a little chuckle from our little peanut!  What an amazing moment watching my two little darlings interact!  Priceless!

A look back at the happy big brother on the day his little sis was born!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Nap Strike

Today B was on a nap strike.  That's right folks!  It was almost 4pm and my little angel had been awake since 8:45am!  That's 7 hours without a nap!  Pretty impressive for a 3.5 month old!  So desperate times call for desperate measures, or ipad apps at least (lol!).  I downloaded an app called "baby sleeping wonders" that allows you to choose between the vacuum, hair dryer, running water, a motor & waves, then select a timer that can go as long as you want (even up to 24 hours) the sound to play.  I picked 2 hours (wishful thinking!). 
I put her in her vibrating chair, set the ipad (a'la hair dryer sound) next to her, and...

VOILA!!!  Technology saves the day!  So, for the next two hours, I'll be "drying my hair". :)

Wordless Wednesday ~ Just a Regular Day

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

One Year Ago...

One year ago, I was going through HELL!  I was in the care of an RE, we were using injectables and I was going to the doctor for monitoring or bloodwork appointments regularly.  I was even blessed enough to see B when she was only one of my eggs they were monitoring.  It was a very difficult time.  But as I look back, I can't help but smile.  It was all completely worth it.  One year ago we were getting ready to stimulate ovulation via ovidrel.  I was fixated on the injection that my hubs was going to have to give me in the stomach that night.  Sometime 24-36 hours after the injection, our love created Brynleigh bug!  The above graphic is my actual chart from the cycle we were FINALLY blessed to conceive our little girl.  It wasn't until Saturday, August 21st that we finally found out we were pregnant, because the injectables I was on created false-positive tests.  It was the longest 19 days of my life!  It's hard enough to wait 9 DPO to test, but when you have to wait 15-20, torture!  It was  a difficult road, but we were successful, and for that I am so incredibly thankful.  We have come so far since last year at this time.  We were so low, so sad, so disappointed and so stressed all the time.  Now, we just enjoy being together and watching our kids grow and learn.  ::sigh::

Monday, August 1, 2011

Milestone Monday

Happy Monday Blog Readers!  It's time for another "Milestone Monday".  Our blondies are doing lots of new and exciting things as of late, so it's hard to pick just one.  Here's my pick for this week, and some runner-ups. 

On a completely unrelated note, I only have 3 more Mondays left with the kids before I head back to work.  So depressing!  You SAHM are soooo blessed!  I guess I'm lucky I get to be a PT SAHM...but I wish I could be there for them all the time.  ::sigh::

B is finally interested in toys.  Here she is on her playmat. 

Our honorable mentions are her new cute chunky baby thighs (which makes me happy since she was such a bony peanut for so long!), she's almost grown out of her 3 month outfits, we are in the process of moving her to her crib (if mommy can finally let go...) & tummy time is more successful these days.
This weekend T went off the diving board all by himself AND swam to the side of the 12 foot deep diving well without Daddy in the water with him.  All the lifeguards kept asking his age. I guess it's not "normal" for a 4 year old to be able to do this (we had no idea).  We also noticed lots of strangers pointing and watching him.  We have just always had a daredevil on our hands, so we always push him to try new things.  Plus, he swims constantly, and sometimes in a choppy lake, so that helps his skills.  We were very proud.  Hubs did have to "lie" a bit when the guards asked if he passed his deep water test, ummmmmmm.... Oh well.

T's honorable mentions include taking the lock off his door, locking himself in his carseat (he's been doing this successfully all summer) and being able to turn the tv on/off using the remote.