Photos from the weekend
On Sunday I spent way too much time crafting invitations for my sister’s bridal shower. I sent them off…. with the WRONG MONTH on the date.
On Monday I finished up my 2013 financial statements at work. These things are important - they go to banks and hospitals and such. Then I got them back - because I messed up STEP ONE, and thus messed up all of the other steps. Seriously Julia? Get it together. I’ve been doing these for FOUR YEARS. This is not new.
On Tuesday I put a roast in the crock pot before work… and came home to an uncooked roast in a not-turned-on crock pot. Awesome.
On Wednesday I forgot my breast pump and had to turn around and go back home for it. When I got to work I realize that I also forgot my phone and never put any mascara on. At 10pm I discovered that I never took my breast milk out of my bag after work. For those of you who don’t know, you CAN cry over spilt milk when that milk is precious breast milk.
My mind… where is it? Somebody help me. Or just lock me up in the loony bin before I
BEFORE I WHAT?
I just read back over this and realized that when i posted it last night I just stopped writing in the middle of that last sentence. I really AM losing it!
The girls are both sick right now - Jo is teething and has a cold, and Beatrice has croup.
Luckily they’re both in good spirits and have spent the evening playing together. I don’t know who is more excited. Jovia is psyched that Beatrice is paying attention to her, and Beatrice is loving that she has a playmate.
My daughters are growing into such lovely girls. They are sweet and well-behaved, and I am so proud of them - especially when we take them out in public. Beatrice is two and a half and Jovia just turned 9 months old, so you would think that they’d be a handful, but they’re SO good. They will sit through an hour of church or spend an entire morning shopping, with no problems at all. We can take them to other people’s homes, without worrying that they will break something (or even create a mess for that matter). Even when Beatrice doesn’t want to leave the playground, she still listens to me and keeps her tantrums at bay.
This weekend just the four of us went out to eat for the first time in FOREVER. Both girls sat in their seats, and were amazing during the entire meal. Beatrice colored and munched on apple slices, while Jovia inhaled her baby food and grinned at the people around us. We were able to eat our food at a normal pace, and John and I even talked to one another instead of focusing all of our energy on our kids! It was such a pleasant evening and made me excited for all of the things we can do with the girls this summer.
We really lucked out with these girls. Beatrice is mature and careful. I don’t have to worry about her running away from me in a parking lot or throwing a fit because she wants something at a store. I can talk to her like an adult, and in turn, she acts much older than she is. Jovia is happy and easy-going. Even when an outing cuts into her naptime, she remains chipper.
We have fights at home (mostly revolving around Beatrice’s bird-like eating habits), but each day gets easier. I’ve learned to pick my battles – food matters, pajamas don’t. I’ve learned to give Beatrice choices (but only choices that I know the answer to). I’ve learned that just a little bit of baby-proofing goes a long way for everyone’s sanity. But overall, I have no idea what I’m doing as a parent, so I take no credit in my girls’ good behavior. They are just great kids, and I am lucky to have them.
Jovia has taken to finger foods like a bee to honey. It has made meal times a lot easier, now that she’s preoccupied with feeding herself and not screaming at me when I’m slow between bites of purees. She’s very animated when she eats, and gets especially excited when she successfully drinks from her cup.
After she eats she has food everywhere - in her hair, nose, ears… you name it. Nightly baths are now a necessity.
Beatrice needed help finding Blue Sally and Lightning McQueen and was not impressed that I was photographing Jo instead of helping her. This is her “what’s wrong with you mom” face.
Her first experience with real finger food. She loved it, as was expected… and desperately needed a bath when it was all over.
- Get comfortable, you’re going to be here awhile. Recommendations: Drag the rug or couch cushions to the starting line. Prepare snacks/drinks. Distract the baby with a mountain of toys.
- Take turns picking cars from the box. Announce the name of each car that is picked. Line them up in neat rows. This portion of the game will take nearly as long as the actual race.
- Each person selects one car to race. Announce the name of the car.
- Race time. Don’t try to cut corners by hiding two cars under your hand – this is unacceptable. Say “Ready, Set, Go”, and send the cars down the hallway. Comment on impressive acts including, but not limited to, spins, crashes, distance, getting stuck under the basement door.
- Repeat until all cars have been raced.
- Pick up the cars and put them back into the box. All adults must be involved in this step. Toddler participation is optional. Babies may use this time to attempt to put their hands on unwatched cars.
- Repeat until bedtime.
At 8 months old, Jovia’s favorite things are:
- Crawling – She’s everywhere. She’s putting everything in her mouth. Having two truly mobile kids is a whole new ballgame.
- Whatever Beatrice is playing with – This is really hard on our neat little Beatrice. She lines her cars up in a perfect row, Jovia destroys the row. I feel kind of bad for Beatrice. She’s doing surprisingly well, but you can just tell that it crushes her when Jovia messes up her stuff.
- Her Walker – she buzzes all over the house in her walker and loves every minute of it.
- Food – Jovia is obsessed with eating and screams between bites if I’m a little slow with the spoon.
- Containers filled with stuff – fill a box, bowl, whatever, with objects and she’ll be captivated for a good 10 minutes (which is long enough to contemplate making a proper dinner, and then throw a frozen pizza in the oven). She takes each piece out, one by one, examines it, tastes it, and then moves on to the next one. I usually use one of those shape sorter toys and just put a bunch of her small toys in it, but in a pinch a mixing bowl filled with measuring cups and wooden spoons will do just fine.
I secretly hate this stage of eating. Jovia can’t feed herself yet and I feel like I always have to be so prepared when we’re out and about, you know? Beatrice can eat whatever, and a younger baby can be breastfed anywhere, but this in-between stage is just a bit more involved. I’ve been making large batches of purees twice a week, which I don’t really have time for, but baby food is .50-.72 cents PER JAR and she can easily eat 6 jars a day. She’s still breastfed, and will drink around 20 ounces a day. I’m amazed at how much this kid eats. I’m starting to introduce more table food to her, in an effort to reduce the time I spend cooking for this family, and she LOVES it. Last night she had yellow rice for the first time and was downright angry when dinner was over.
If you make your own purees I HIGHLY recommend a Magic Bullet. I use that thing every single day of my life, and it purees much better than any of the appliances I’ve used that were specifically designed for pureeing baby food. I also really like my manual food mill when I’m making a single serving of baby food (and it makes the PERFECT guacamole).
Even though Jovia eats constantly and I feel like she looks huge, when we’re around other kids her age I’m amazed at how much smaller she is than them. She’s mostly wearing 6 month clothes, but she can still fit into her 3 month stuff too.
Jovia tries to mimic sounds and has her bababa’s and dadada’s down. I think she’ll talk earlier than Beatrice did, although that’s not saying much considering everyone talks before Beatrice did.
She still sleeps well. She takes 2 naps each day, totaling 4-5 hours combined. She’s sleeping from 7pm to 8am at night, although she wants to go to bed by 6:30pm. I get home from work at 4 and John doesn’t arrive until 6ish on non-soccer days (and 9:00 on soccer days), and I haven’t figured out how to have dinner on the table fast enough for Jo to get that 6:30 bedtime she wants. And baths! When are baths supposed to happen?! Chaos, I tell you. She’s such a happy girl that it isn’t a huge deal to hold her off until 7pm, but you can tell that she’s really tired.
Jo is crawling up a storm and getting into everything. She loves exploring and tasting everything she finds. Beatrice never put anything in her mouth, so this is a whole new ballgame for me. I have to watch Joves like a hawk. Our house needs to be baby-proofed immediately. Having two mobile kids is CRAZY. Why didn’t you all warn me? I feel frazzled from trying to keep everyone alive. Mothers of twins, hats off to you. I don’t know how you do it at this stage.
Jovia also likes standing. I have to put her in a standing position – she can’t pull herself up yet – but then she’s pretty good at standing while holding onto something. She especially loves standing her her crib while Beatrice jumps up and down beside her (thus making her bounce too), and standing on the couch where she can look out the window.
Personality-wise, Joves continues to be happy and sweet. When she’s excited, she waves her hands and huffs and puffs, unable to contain herself. She smiles ALL of the time, and I die from sweetness when she buries her head in my neck. She really is the most pleasant baby you’ve ever seen.
Eight months is a really sweet age in general. It’s fun to see all of the new things they do, and their personalities really blossom. When you have two kids close together though, the eight month point is pretty crazy. Meals are ridiculous as I’m trying to feed Jo at the fast speed she desires, coax Beatrice through each and every bite, and shovel some food into my own mouth as well. Cooking/cleaning/etc is hard because I can’t take my eyes off of Jo for a minute because she puts everything in her mouth. Plus, I’m constantly playing referee to Beatrice and Jovia, since Jo wants to play with whatever Beatrice is playing, and Beatrice doesn’t exactly like Jo’s methods of play. I just need to figure out my rhythm and everything will be fine. Hopefully this happens soon, because soccer season is right around the corner!
When I was probably 8 years old or so, my class made holders for our valentines out of paper plates like this:
We decorated them, and obviously I spent more time on mine than anyone else because I was a serious kid and really cared about things like this. I was SO proud of my valentine holder and really excited about all of my pretty valentines. When it was time to go home I didn’t put my valentine holder in my backpack like my classmates, because I felt like it would get smashed and that would just be horrible.
That entire bus ride (an hour long since we lived a million miles away from school), I stared at my valentine holder and looked through my valentines.
When I got home I ran off the bus SO excited to show my mom and siblings my valentines, and a big gust of wind came and blew all of my valentines out of my valentine holder and across the field.
You know those moments when the world stands still? This was one of them. I can still picture all of those valentines flying away. I wanted to chase after them but they were going in all different directions and I think I just felt overwhelmed. My mom said she stood at the window and cried when she watched this happen.
It’s one of the most vivid memories I have.
I’m not sure why I felt the need to write that here, but I think about it every Valentines day.
I strive to appear laid-back and free-spirited, but in truth, I’m still that neurotic girl who won’t stick her valentines in her backpack because they’ll get bent.
And we wonder why Beatrice is the way she is.
Anyway, I had good intentions for this valentines day, but work is overwhelming right now and the today snuck up on me so we’re spending the evening at home with a crock pot meal, no heart shaped sprinkles in sight. Next year I’m going to do better. My mom used to do things like make heart shaped pizzas and throw little valentine parties, and I want to do those things for the girls but… next year.
I DID put Beatrice to work making valentines for her aunts, uncles and grandparents a few weeks ago, and they are the best ever:
She’s been periodically bringing me a tiny pair of nail scissors and her Cars coloring book and telling me to “cut that”. So we now have little cutouts of the cars characters she’s colored all over the house. It was her idea to glue these to the cards, which I thought was hilarious. They are mixed media masterpieces - cars cutouts, stickers, markers, crayons, paint, and of course GLITTER. She spent a lot of time on these cards, and thought long and hard about which card went to what person (the one pictured above is for her ol’ dad).
Happy Valentine’s day everyone! And keep those valentines safe in your backpack kids!
Jovia - 8.5 months old
She’s been army crawling for awhile, but just got the hang of really crawling this weeknd. She loves it. Beatrice is horrified.