Saturday, August 29, 2009

Back to Work

I haven't yet said much about being back at work these last two, almost three weeks... it's been a difficult adjustment to make. I am missing the kids while at work and (I think) they are missing me as well! I am working full-time, but part of my position this year is supervising half of the week. I am now the only SLP at one elementary plus a small christian school and then supervising at another elementary, a catholic school, and a children's home. We are rushing to start therapy much earlier this year due to a new service delivery model. I feel like there is just paperwork upon paperwork upon paperwork to be completing at all times. The beginning of the school year is always busy with hearing screenings, students transferring in and out, new students to screen- evaluate- and enroll, etc. and it all comes with gobs of paperwork! We are also learning to bill Medicaid this year so that adds (you guessed it!) MORE PAPERWORK! It's just been crazy and lots of new things to learn and keep track of. Once I had kids I learned to make LISTS... now I have to write everything down at each school so that I don't forget something important. I blame it on the "mommy brain" because I used to be able to remember everything so well! As soon as school started, we all got sore throats/runny noses so that didn't help adjusting to the work routine either. Basically, I am just exhausted by the time the kids go to sleep and feel like time is just flying past me. I am sure I will get into a routine and it will feel better but for right now its still feels like we are adjusting. I am still nursing Charlotte and hope to continue for as long as possible. I am finding it hard to find the time to be able to pump at work and keep up a supply for at home. One day this week I opened the freezer and only a few bags of milk were left... she drank like 4 or 5 bottles whereas I only brought 2 bags home that day! I'm not sure how people keep up their supply while at work but it may be that I just don't have enough time or maybe my pump is not the best. With Luke I nursed until about 9 months of age. I was hoping to go longer with Charlotte but I am starting to worry that is not going to happen as easily as I had previously thought. Another peril of being a working mom I guess.

JW was supposed to start back at work this coming Monday, however was told he is laid off for at least another two weeks. He is really bummed about that. He is sick of being at home all day and would like to be working. Hopefully business will pick up soon and he will be back to work! It's too bad the roles are not reversed with him having the more stable job and me being able to stay home. But it is what it is and we are that at least one of us is working and can make ends meet.

The best part of my day is when I walk through the front door and my little Lukie smiles at me and says, "Mommy's home!" and comes running to give me a BIG hug.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

One Cool Dude & Lil' Lady Lottie

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Rainbow Connection

This has been a week of rainbows! I can't remember the last time I have seen a rainbow, but this week I have seen 3 big, gorgeous ones! This rainbow appeared out over the lake this week after it POURED ALL DAY... seriously I was thinking we were going to have to start building an arc. I think our town got 8 inches in a day! We have had several other rainy days this week and I loved seeing the rainbows out after the sun appeared. For some reason they instantly make me feel hopeful...

Friday, August 14, 2009

Charlotte at 5 months!

I can't believe Charlotte is already 5 months! She is definately getting bigger every day. Right now, she is fitting in 9 month size clothes! The biggest event this week for her has been the attempt at starting some rice cereal. She is always grabbing at our food, drinks, and utensils so I thought she wanted to try some REAL food (well if you call that stuff real haha). I haven't felt terribly successful in our 3 attempts at the rice cereal. More seems to end up on her face, her clothes, and spit back in my face! She loves doing raspberries now with her tongue and so she gets a bite and then blows it back out! It didn't seem to me like she swallowed much, but she has been having more tummy trouble so maybe she got more than I thought. As you can see we made quite a mess!

Charlotte is constantly chewing on anything she can get her hands on. She also likes to grab at anything within reach- including Luke's hair or clothes which he does NOT appreciate! She gets up on her hands and knees and does a few rocking movements. She loves to be carried. She loves it when you pretend to sneeze or do peek-a-boo. She loves getting a bath Most of all she loves watching her big brother Luke. Her eyes are on him all the time! He got some good giggles out of her the other day when zoobering her belly.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Don't Tell Me Summer is Over

I can't believe summer vacation is ending this week (well at least for me!). Work starts again on Wednesday, but I will be meeting with other SLPs on Tuesday to go over some things so REALLY my last day is tomorrow. :( I've packed in a hair appointment and hoping to get the oil changed on my car as last minute t0-do's. Time this summer has flown by! I am not sure if it is because of JW's knee injury, adding a new baby, or just time going by faster as I get older. I feel like there were so many projects I wanted to get done but procrastinated on. I still have between 10-15 lbs to lose before I feel better about myself and can fit in my Fall pants for work. Didn't exercise enough, didn't get my pictures in albums, didn't go on any vacations, didn't get my clothes sorted and organized... lots of didn'ts.

BUT we did have 5 months at home as a family. We did spend countless time swinging, playing soccer, and fishing with Luke. We did spend hours and hours (more like days!) holding Charlotte and cuddling her. We did eat wayyyy too many bowls of ice cream. We did get to catch up with some great friends. We did share fun cookouts and zoo trips with family & friends.

JW will be staying at home with the kids for now while he is laid off. Please pray for him... haha... no seriously... we may need to start praying now! ;) He doesn't think he is cut out for the stay-at-home-dad thing but he has gotten a lot of good practice this summer! I start to feel choked up and get teary eyed when I think about being gone every day for hours and hours... but I know it will be okay. I will adjust to the new routine and schedule and so will the kids. I'm going to try to have fun and enjoy these next few days and not get too stressed about going back to work!

Oh, did I mention we bought a pool at Aldi's for $24.99?? It cost our guests more than that to feed their family of 5 at Subway before heading to our house. It definately lived up to the money spent today! We had 2 adults and 4 children in it at the same time, playing and having a blast. It was so humid and hot today, it was a lifesaver!

Friday, August 7, 2009

ERGObaby Carrier Review!!!!

I am soooo excited to have the opportunity to review an ERGObaby Carrier on my blog! The very nice people at Ergobaby sent me their "HandsFree System" which includes the ERGObaby Carrier, Front Pouch, and Backpack. This carrier was invented by a Mom who wanted to keep her baby close, but also wanted to be comfortable! I have been dying to try this carrier since I have been learning more about babywearing and hearing about different products through other moms on Twitter. I heard ONLY the best about the Ergobaby and at first wondered why it was so great! Initially, I thought it looked similar to a Snugli or Bjorn style carrier with snaps and buckles...and FYI those kill your shoulders and back! However, I learned that the design of the ERGObaby allows your baby's weight to be distributed between your hips and shoulders. It also allows for a natural, more ergonomic seating position for the baby and helps prevent compression of their spine. Here is what you need to know about the ERGObaby carrier:
*Can be used for newborn up to 40 pounds. For newborn to about 4 months you would also need to purchase the "newborn insert" which is a special pad to cradle the baby in the carrier.
*Can be worn 3 ways: front (facing parent), back, or hip carry.
*The shoulder and waist straps are padded thick to be extra comfy.
*VERY easy and quick to put on.
*Folds up fairly small for easy portability
*Has attached hood to provide sun shade, privacy while nursing, and/or to support head of child if sleeping.
*Also comes in Organic fabrics
*Chosen as 1 of the 20 best products in the last 20 years by Parenting magazine

I've mainly been testing out the ERGObaby Carrier around the house, playing in the yard, at the park, grocery shopping, and the ultimate test- a zoo trip! It has been very comfortable and I love how the majority of the weight is hanging from my hips instead of my shoulders. It's really neat how Charlotte is in a seated position- almost as if being held. If she is tired, she falls asleep very quickly in the front carry position. I love that her little arms go around my waist and we are very close together.
At the zoo, I was able to take Charlotte in the ERGObaby carrier and then just take a single stroller (instead of the giant double!) for Luke. I like to have options as far as where to put the kids if they get fussy. Charlotte was happy being worn, but Luke was acting "scared" of the animals! I think he was putting on an act for us, but anyways...I suggested he ride in the ERGObaby so he could get a good view of the animals and be safe and secure with Mommy. He liked that idea so I popped Charlotte out and put her in the stroller. I turned the carrier into the back position and had Luke climb on and away we went! So easy!

Things I LOVE about the ERGObaby Carrier:
*I love that Charlotte is held belly to belly with me in the front position (No fabric from the carrier in between)
*I love how fast and easy it is to put on and get her inside. Definately user-friendly.
*Fabric seems strong and durable. Buckles are heavy-duty and there is reinforced stitching at the seams.
*No complicated tying involved.
*It is even comfortable with Luke carried and he is over 31 pounds.
*Hands are FREE to tend to Luke, do housework (I know you're thinking that never happens!), push shopping carts, make dinner... whatever you need to get done!
*Handy zippered pouch in front that is big enough to hold my wallet and cellphone. I used the detachable Front Pouch to carry my camara at the zoo. The Backpack can be worn seperately or attached when child is in back carry position- this would be awesome for hiking!
*It's machine washable!
*Numerous benefits to babywearing.

If you know me in real life and want to test out the ERGObaby carrier just let me know and you can borrow it for a little while! For more information visit:

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