Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Today is Not Sunday

We're back from San Diego and relaxing on the couch after our first non-stressful return from one of Terry's road trips. Terry got off early, so we barely hit any traffic, and we were home in time for a homemade dinner of waffles and sweet potatoes (eh, you do what you gotta do). 

In San Diego, we enjoyed some nice weather after Monday's rain. Marshall explored our hotel room thoroughly.

We also went to Target, and he took his job of looking around very seriously.

Then he was exhausted, so he napped for over two hours.
His sweatshirt says, "Made of Awesome." Fact.

Also, shout out to Norstrom. I know they're famous for their good customer service, but I still love the reminder. I needed to replenish my makeup supply, but they were out of my color. So the Clinique lady gave me a free sample to take home, plus a sample of toner (what the heck is that?), and they're shipping the makeup I needed to my house for free. Amazing.

Today I was in charge of lunch (I brought takeout to Terry at work), but Terry helped because he found this salad/wrap place and I just picked it up. It was SO GOOD. I had a California Turkey wrap (lettuce, tomato, avocado, turkey, cheese, onion in a whole wheat wrap), and Terry had a Buffalo Chicken wrap (chicken, carrots, celery, lettuce, onion). The wraps were huge, but I housed the whole thing in about eight minutes while Marshall napped in the backseat. I'm sad they don't have a Greenspot in LA, but I'll definitely go there again next SD trip.

Random but exciting: Feeding Babies Foods with Peanuts Appears to Prevent Allergies. You just know I'm going to start Marshall on peanut butter this week!

Since we were out of town for two days, I feel like tonight is Sunday, but it's already Tuesday and that means my parents will be here tomorrow! It's going to be a quick trip again, so we're focusing on lots of grandparent time for Marshall. 

My goals for the year and for February aren't going great. I've been feeling less than stellar for most of the month, if I think about it, so I don't feel too terrible, but I really think I could get back on track with stretching 15 minutes a day and doing yoga. Today I didn't do yoga, but I did take Marshall for a walk and even jogged up a big hill. Better than nothing!

Okay, early bed again for us. Every few nights I have a terrible night of sleep for no reason, so I'm making an effort to go to bed earlier to make up for it. 

How are your New Year's resolutions going? Do you ever switch mid-year? 

Monday, February 23, 2015

It's 3:53 am on Monday Morning

...and I'm wide awake. Terry and I went to bed around 10 pm, but I have only slept about an hour, tossing and turning all night. Finally, I just gave up and got out of bed, hoping it would make me more tired so I can nap on our way down to San Diego this morning. So now I come to you with random, sleep-deprived, likely incoherent facts to start this week.

Last night our little family attended the world's greatest Oscar party (yes, even better than the ones the celebrities attend). Our friends hosted a baked potato bar (brilliant idea, by the way), plus a potluck, and everyone chatted and made our guesses for the evening. Then the real fun began. Our host handed out packets of envelopes to everyone.

Each packet contained about ten envelopes, and each envelope was assigned an Oscar category, such as Best Actor. When that category came up, if we had an envelope with the appropriate category, we opened our envelopes, and if our paper had the winner, we got money! (Everyone bought in with $10 per person.) You also could win money if you guessed the winners correctly, but the random envelope game made it fun for everyone, especially since most of us hadn't seen any of the movies. I definitely recommend it for your next Oscar party!

Another huge highlight of the weekend was visiting our friends and meeting Katie and Corey's brand new baby, Tessa. She is tiny and so sweet and perfect! The happy family now has two beautiful daughters, and I've never seen them look so happy. Congratulations to two of my favorite people!

Yesterday morning, before heading up to visit the new arrival, I decided I needed a little strength training in my life. I set a timer for 20 minutes and did either push ups (between 5-10) or tricep dips (15) every minute on the minute. I'm definitely feeling it this morning already!

Another workout this weekend was a fun hike as a family of three. We received a hand-me-down backpack thing for Marshall from Terry's coworker, and Marshall seemed to love it! Honestly, it looked a little uncomfortable for him, but he was happy as a clam, so I guess he's fine in there. I think he liked being up a little higher than the Ergo allows, and he seemed happy to see in front of him (rather than just to the side).

Beautiful sunset from Friday night:

As I mentioned, we're heading out this morning for a quick trip to San Diego. Terry will be working, so Marshall and I decided to join him for a mini-getaway. Then later this week my parents will be coming down for a super fast trip. I hope all the travel and visitors will make for a fun week! Let's also hope it means I'll find a way to get some sleep, huh?

That's it for now. I hope you're having a wonderful start to your week!

What do you do when you can't sleep? I usually watch TV, but sometimes that keeps me up even later, so I try little tricks to settle my mind and help me doze off. Last night was just one of those nights where even if I managed to fall asleep, a dream or some crazy wind/rain woke me up.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Baby Meals: Breakfast

And in tonight's episode of Weird Stuff My Kid Did Today:

Hung out on the ottoman, teething away.

Sat in the cart at Trader Joe's like he owned the damn place. Or, like my brother said, "Like a boss."

Sat in a box. (To be fair, we put him in the box, but it was still weird.)

I'm liking having the glider in the nursery now. I sat comfortably for about twenty minutes while Marshall played on his own. 

Anyway, it's been over two months now since we started Marshall on solid foods, so I thought I would share some of what he's been eating, how we prepare it, and how Marshall eats it. Today I'll just share some breakfasts.

Note: Terry and I have no known food allergies in our families, so we feel very comfortable introducing Marshall to a wide variety of foods. We don't follow the "add a new food every three days to check for allergic reactions" rule, but I definitely suggest following your doctor's recommendations as far as introducing your baby to new foods.

(I swear in this photo he's just upset about the fact that he has to wait for his food.)

Yogurt - we use full fat plain Greek yogurt. Babies need a lot of healthy fats, so yogurt is great. I spoon-feed him yogurt.

  • Yogurt mixed with a tiny bit of 100% pure maple syrup (he definitely finds the yogurt super tart, so we had to sweeten it a little!)
  • Yogurt mixed with frozen blueberries (we buy the "Wild Blueberries" from Trader Joe's--they're perfectly tiny for tiny mouths). The berries thaw within a few minutes and sweeten the yogurt. A dash of cinnamon would work well, too.
  • Yogurt mixed with applesauce and cinnamon.
Oatmeal - I use oats from the bulk bins at Whole Foods. Terry and I cook our own oatmeal as usual (2 parts water + 1 part oats), and then we just scoop out a little for Marshall at the end before we add any of our normal toppings 
  • Oatmeal with frozen blueberries (see above--they thaw perfectly within a minute or two) or mashed banana (I drop small amounts of oatmeal on his tray and he goes for it with his hands). 
  • Oatmeal blended with fruit (pears, apples, or bananas), thanks to Gina's baby food recipe
Cinnamon Raisin toast - really tiny bites on his tray (note: I make this loaf with maple syrup instead of honey because infants shouldn't eat honey)

Scrambled eggs - prepared with a little splash of milk and sometimes a little cheese, plus a little pepper. I put small pieces on his tray and let him pick them up.

Pancakes - Again, I make these with maple syrup instead of honey. We put small bites on his tray.

Fruit - For almost all breakfasts, we try to give him some fruit. He's had raspberries (whole), banana (I tried giving it to him in the peel with a little banana exposed, but he just licks the peel, so I cut it up for him), kiwi, pear (skin peeled off, small bites), blackberries (cut small enough to avoid choking), apple (peeled and cut in half so he basically just sucks/gnaws on it), canned pumpkin (mixed with banana), applesauce, and probably more but you get the idea. Soft fruit that he can chew on his own without choking!

Stuff We Want to Try: French toast, cottage cheese, different types of breads, crepes, smoothies (we tried once but I think he got brain freeze!), various types of eggs (fried, poached, hard-boiled).

Anything else you would recommend for an infant for breakfasts? 

Sunday, February 15, 2015


We've been a little under the weather over here, but I wanted to pop in to share some fun scenes from lately.

Despite feeling sick (coughing, runny nose, congestion), Marshall has still found himself crawling all over the house and finding new ways to enjoy all his toys.

But I won't lie: Sometimes this whole sick thing makes him more cuddly, and I love cuddling with this guy! (Normally I can't get him to cuddle for more than three seconds.)

For some quiet time, Terry tried to read with Marshall. It was a miserable time for everyone.

Today we decided to move the glider into the nursery to see if we like it better in there. Marshall got a kick out of playing with the ottoman.

So did Scout.

Workouts lately have been pretty inconsistent, but I've really focused on getting 10,000 steps per day. Finally, on Friday, when I was feeling better (short-lived), Terry and I did a lower body workout. We have been hobbling around ever since.

24 minutes, no equipment necessary (I used weights for some exercises but they weren't needed), done and done.

We ran a few errands today, including a stop at PetSmart. Marshall found the birds and fish fascinating, and I realized we can skip paying for zoos and aquariums and just go to pet stores for the same experience...at least for a few years.

At some point last week we grilled up a bunch of vegetables and ate them with goat cheese, hummus, and pita. One of our favorite ways to eat our veggies.

Marshall liked them, but he's had some rough times lately.

But some fun times, too! We checked out a new park, and it is GORGEOUS. We kept calling it Eagleton (Parks and Rec fans, you know what I mean).

 It was huge and well maintained and truly beautiful. The bathrooms were, by far, the best public bathrooms I've ever seen, fully stocked and everything. I told Terry I was surprised they didn't have a bathroom attendant in there.

Valentine's Day was delightfully low-key. Breakfast: scrambled eggs, pancakes, and raspberries (Marshall got to eat all three! I just swapped out the honey for maple syrup in the pancake recipe).

And lunch: spinach salad with sliced almonds, goat cheese, dried cranberries, and a balsamic vinegar, plus roasted sweet potatoes.

We took a looooong walk in the morning near the cliffs by the ocean and saw tons of sea lions. Then we spent most of the day at home, and Terry and I enjoyed our traditional fondue dinner with champagne and caramel brownies. For the brownies, I used Deb's (Smitten Kitchen) caramel recipe (so easy!) combined with a modified version of Lisa's (100 Days of Real Food) brownie recipe.

The boys gave me flowers, too! Terry said Marshall chose "mums for his mum."

More cuddling with our little guy.

Plus, a fun Valentine's Day photo shoot with our bonus Valentine.

This week is a little up in the air right now. I'm still not feeling great, and Marshall is recovering but not 100%. We're focusing on lots of sleep and keeping/getting everyone healthy. But we also might have a little trip to SD for work for Terry, and in between all that we still have our usual classes as long as the little guy feels well enough. Here's hoping.

Hope you had a wonderful Valentine's Day and a great weekend! Enjoy your week!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Lessons from My Mom

Today is my mom's birthday! She's celebrating in Hawaii, but I thought I would celebrate from afar with some of the lessons she has taught me over the last (almost) thirty years.

On being her kids' biggest fan.
She has always been my biggest supporter and has always believed in me more than I have. When I tried out for the dance team in college, she flew down to be with me for the audition, and then when the results were delayed, she delayed her flight home to stay with me. My mom also reads my blog every day and makes me feel like someone would really miss it if I didn't write.

On always being a mom first. 
When I gave birth to Marshall, I remember very vividly the moment when I had arrived into the recovery room and all the new grandparents were heading in to see Marshall. My mom made it first (no doubt in my mind that she ran from the waiting room when they gave her permission to visit), and she would have been totally justified in rushing to see her grandson. Instead, though, she came to me. Even as a new mom, I needed my mom at that moment. She comforted me after that long labor and C-section, and it really made a tremendous difference that she gave me a hug before meeting Marshall.

On drama.
My mom told me long ago that girls are mean. Not all of them, and not all the time, but plenty, and often. But my mom has always been an incredible example of rising above drama. (That's not to say she doesn't love a good gossip magazine, of course. :-) I think my mom has thick skin and generally focuses on the positive in other people. Growing up I never heard her speaking negatively about other women, and she also never seemed bothered by what other people thought of her. I am certainly not perfect about ignoring negativity and rising above others' opinions, but I do think my mom sets a great example that I can strive to achieve.

On thoughtfulness.
My mom always looks for a reason to celebrate. Just today I remembered a few different times when my mom has sent along a little care package for my birthday or for Valentine's Day. She is so thoughtful about remembering to give a little gift for a housewarming or noticing that one thing someone doesn't have and getting it for them.

On recipes.
In short, she doesn't use them. If you ever ask her for her amazing short ribs recipe or her delicious chili verde secret, she will say, "I don't know, I do something different every time. I just add a little of this, a little of that." And of course it always tastes better when she makes it, even if I do manage to get a recipe out of her.

On Google. 
Starting in college, my mom shifted her advice-giving techniques. Now, if I ask her how to clean something or about a certain cooking method, she'll almost invariably say, "I don't know, just look it up online." I've started Googling more and more in an effort to save time.

On loving those I love. 
My mom is allergic to cats and never really liked them, but she has loved Scout since the day she met him. Now they cuddle every time she's in town, and I have to wait until she's gone before Scout will curl up on my lap again.

Happy birthday to my workout and shopping buddy! Love you, Mom!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Scenes from San Diego

We continued our little San Diego getaway last night with a sushi dinner and a quiet night back at the hotel, where Marshall fell asleep rather quickly. I, on the other hand, slept terribly, for no particular reason, and I'm hoping tonight will be much better.

This morning we slept in a little and headed to Cafe 21 for breakfast. It was our second visit there, and we've been thoroughly impressed both times. I ordered the pumpkin-feta-spinach omelet, and Terry went with the short rib omelet. Yeah, that's a thing, and it was awesome. Actually both were incredible. Marshall got to taste a little of everything, made a huge mess and a lot of noise, and likely drew a sigh of relief from the staff when we left without destroying the restaurant. He's not bad at all in restaurants, but after about thirty minutes he gets fidgety and makes his frustration known to all who will listen.

Here's the one photo I took of downtown, as we walked back to our hotel to check out.

After check out, we drove up to Balboa Park to hang out, walk around, and check out the sights.

We didn't realize how huge the park is! And the buildings are gorgeous. We didn't go into any of the museums or anything, but they had a ton of exhibits and interesting cultural centers.

I loved the botanical center.

By the end of our visit, Marshall was pretty tuckered out and ready for a nap, but he held out until we got to the car, mostly because Daddy gave him a ride across the bridge!

The little guy slept the whole way home (and only took one nap today...), and we spent the afternoon cleaning the house and playing. The floors are all clean now, and we have a meal plan, so I'm calling today a success.

Also, Marshall and Scout have reunited, so that's a success, too.
(It looks like he's standing, but he's on his knees. Thank goodness.)

It was a great weekend, and I'm so thankful Terry was able to step away from work for some quality time with us. We have a busy week ahead, too: My Gym classes, a swim lesson, a walk with a friend, and some tasty meals.