Henry: Eight Months Old

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Would you look at that (^) face!? Hard to believe he is already 8 months old and sweet as ever. Here’s a recap on our Henry from this past month:

EATING

Henry Owen is still the big eater of the family! This baby can down some food. Even when I think I’ve made too much for him, he surprises me by wanting even more. He continues to have oatmeal mixed with applesauce each morning for breakfast, but then he eats whatever we eat for lunch and dinner. He still loves beans and chicken, and tried strawberries, cantaloupe, deli turkey, and PB&J this month. The PB&J was a HUGE hit (are we surprised?).

He still nurses 4 times daily as well, but has become much more distracted recently. If Levi is awake, I usually have to nurse him on my bed. Not a big deal though!

SLEEP

Naps are about the same! Typically two 2-hour naps each day. He has been cutting his morning nap a bit short some days though, which is pretty normal I think. He is doing MUCH better with the long wake time between waking from his afternoon nap and bedtime. If we go out during that time, sometimes he’ll take a 10-15 minute catnap in the car, but generally he can handle the 4 hour stretch now.

Nighttime is going….better? Pretty much the same as last month I guess. As long as he goes to bed on time, it’s a pretty sure thing that he’ll sleep a solid 10 hours (so usually until 5 AM). Every once in a while he’ll extend to 6 AM. But usually, if I just give him a half-feed and put him right back in his crib, he’ll sleep until 7 AM. So I really think the waking is just a habit (and it’s getting annoying), but I really don’t want to deal with CIO at that time of the morning–it’s just miserable for everyone. Praying he begins extending to his DWT soon!

The boys are still in separate rooms as well.

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

  • We are officially back in a Wonder Week (leap 6). It doesn’t seem to be as bad as the previous two were.
  • His first tooth has emerged all the way and I’m fairly certain he has another one coming! So much drooling and chewing on anything in sight.
  • Henry is now unsafe on the couch or beds…if he is on his belly, he will scoot backwards right on off. I know from experience. Still not a ton of floor scooting though!
  • He LOVES his daddy. Brian and Henry have really bonded this past month. They even went on their first “boys outing” (including Levi) to Bass Pro. Big milestone!
  • Henry is doing much better at mealtime. He is still pretty demanding, but no longer shrieks–instead he just hits the table when he wants more. I can live with that. He has also gotten MUCH better at self-feeding real food this month, so as long as I keep him stocked up on goodies, he is content to sit in his chair and keep on eating.

SCHEDULE

Same as last month!

7:00 AM             Nurse

7:45 or 8 AM     Breakfast with Levi

9:00 AM            Nap

11:00 AM           Nurse

12:00 PM           Lunch with Levi

1:00 PM             Nap

3:00 PM            Nurse

4:00 PM           Something to keep him preoccupied and happy!

5:30/6:00 PM    Dinner with family

6:30 PM            Nurse

6:45/7:00 PM    Bed

 

Henry: Seven Months Old

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Here’s my little SEVEN month old! We’re over halfway to his first birthday now–the time is just flying by with this little chunk-o-love. Even though he is the most demanding little thing (more on that later), he just melts us. Life with him is getting more and more fun by the day! Here’s a recap on his 6th month of life:

EATING

I mentioned last month how his growth curve was on the decline for his weight (14 lb 11 oz at his 5 month appointment). Well…he certainly made up for that once he started solids last month. At his 6 month appointment on 1/13, he weighed 16 lb 5 oz–over a pound and a half gained in one month! So, he’s still small for his age (18th %, although he really doesn’t look or feel it to us), but definitely getting back on track with his curve. He was also 27″ long, which is the 50th %.

It is amazing how much this baby eats! There is hardly anything he doesn’t like. His favorites right now are black bean puree, grilled chicken bites, and applesauce (of course!). We joke (but really, we’re not joking) that he is always the last one at the table! It takes SO much food to fill him up. We traveled to Pensacola this past month, where he ate the last of his baby food purees–I bought a ton of pouches for that trip–and I was determined when we got back to not buy any more baby food. That junk is expensive. Well, Henry has managed JUST fine! He is now eating literally everything that we eat. Depending on what it is, I may mush it up a little for him, but he devours it regardless. The last week of his 6th month he had spaghetti (cut up the size of rice), chicken and bean soup, chicken pot pie, deli ham, and scrambled eggs. It’s amazing how well he can chew, even with no teeth!

He is still nursing 4 times per day before every meal and still loves that too! I’ve even started introducing dairy back into my diet and from what we can tell, he is no longer affected by it. PTL!

SLEEP

Naps are great and the same–two 2-hour naps each day. Every once in a while he is dying for a catnap in the early evening, but I’m really trying to push him to bedtime without it. He does excellent transitioning during his naps (around the 45 min or 1 hr 15 min marks) as well.

Nighttime sleep has finally started to get consistent again! Our trip to Pensacola was a nightmare–I got hardly any sleep. He was up every 2-3 hours and inconsolable. I ended up just bringing him into bed with me–which still meant little sleep for us both, but more than if I left him in the PnP. The first night we were back from that trip, he slept from 8-6ish. Reinserted paci at 6 and he was back out until 7:30. So I’m not sure if it was the different surroundings or what, but I sure am glad to be home. He has slept 10-12 hours every night since then!

The boys are still in separate rooms. I’m dreading the switch with Henry’s occasional 6 AM “I-need-my-paci” wakings :-/

WAKE TIME

Henry is now easily able to make it to the 2 hour mark for all wake times! After his second nap, his last wake time is from 3ish to 7ish, which is a really big stretch for him. I’ve been putting him down to bed around 6:30 on nights when he is clearly ready for it.

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

  • Last week, I discovered he has a tooth that’s about the break through! It’s the bottom middle left one. I noticed he had been chewing on his blanket a lot and drooling again suddenly…and sure enough, I saw a little white cap about to emerge! I’m so sad to lose that sweet gummy smile!
  • He is doing awesome at sitting up! He is much more stable now and has even been sitting on the floor of his room to play with Levi during the day. I love it.
  • We’ve gotten some really good belly laughs out of him recently! He had chuckled previously, but never a good laugh. (I think my babies are late to laugh! Levi was like this too.) The one who makes him laugh the most: Levi.
  • Henry can scoot across the floor on his belly, but still showing no interest in getting on all fours to crawl.
  • He is SO demanding at meal time! If I’m not moving quick enough or if I take his plate away to go fill it up with more food, he SHRIEKS!! I told Brian the other day that sometimes I feel like a chicken with my head cut off at mealtimes because I can’t keep up with how much he is eating.

SCHEDULE

7:00 AM             Nurse

7:45 or 8 AM     Breakfast with Levi

9:00 AM            Nap

11:00 AM           Nurse

12:00 PM           Lunch with Levi

1:00 PM             Nap

3:00 PM            Nurse

4:00 PM           Something to keep him preoccupied and happy!

5:30/6:00 PM    Dinner with family

6:30 PM            Nurse

6:45/7:00 PM    Bed

Henry: Six Months Old

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Half a year has gone by since we welcomed the sweetest little Henry baby into our family! I almost cannot believe it. Where have the months gone?! I really, really love this age. It’s the “not mobile, but starting to entertain himself” age. Plus, he’s laughing and all the fun things. A little more about Henry below:

EATING

At his last appointment on 12/09 (5.5 months old), Henry weighed 14 lb 11 oz–only a 3 ounce increase in one month and dropping him down to the 9th % for weight. His doctor was a bit concerned, since his growth curve was on the decline, so she suggested we start solids. I talked to her about baby led weaning (BLW) and she was on board with that, but she also wanted me to offer him purees as well to get his weight back on track. He was showing all signs of readiness for solids, so I knew we needed to just go for it! And goodness–this babe couldn’t get enough! You would think we starve him by how excited he is for his food and how much he eats!

Things he has eaten so far: oatmeal, apples, prunes, pears, carrots, butternut squash (all pureed), along with “real” chicken, bell peppers, CFA french fries, Christmas ham, steak and asparagus. Over the past two weeks, he has greatly improved with holding strips of food and bringing them to his mouth! His current favorite is bell peppers–I think because they feel cool on his gums.

Since starting solids, we are on a 4 hour schedule and Henry is still nursing before he eats his solid meals. 4-hour schedule is the bomb diggity! I can also now eat *some* dairy without affecting him and I wonder if that has to do with other types of food being in his belly. I still can’t overdo it, but I’m enjoying having a little more freedom in that area.

SLEEP

Ugh, sleep this month has been rough again. Not quite sure what it is! Naps are okay for the most part, but nighttime sleep has been ALL over the place. I’m not sure if it’s teeth or separation anxiety or his paci addiction, but he’s been waking anywhere from 1-3 times per night. Usually, just re-inserting his paci does the trick, but I’m SO sick of the unpredictability. What happened to my babe who slept at least a solid 10 hours every single night?! Just trying to remind myself that this will only last so long. Extreme nighttime anti-paci CIO may be in our near future though.

We did try room-sharing one time a week or two ago! Both boys went down so peacefully together at 7 PM. Brian and I were both kind of amazed. But come 10 PM, Henry woke with a shrill cry and it FREAKED Levi out. They could not recuperate (so much crying), so we split them up. We’ll try again when Henry gets back on track.

WAKE TIME

Henry’s first wake time is usually around 1.5 hours and all wake times thereafter are about 1.75-2 hours. He is usually still very cranky by the last 15 minutes or so!

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

We are just about through Wonder Week #5 (praise Jesus!). It was another month-long one, but we are starting to see the benefits of it. Henry will now:

  • Sit unassisted. He’s still a tad wobbly, but his stability is improving by the day!
  • Have more and more separation anxiety from mama. I don’t remember it being this bad with Levi. He’ll scream and scream if he sees me across the room and I don’t come pick him up/take him from whoever is holding him. It’s sweet, but really hard on me.
  • Blow raspberries! He loves to mimic us with this.
  • Slap his arms down when he is excited or mad.

SCHEDULE

7:00 AM     Nurse

7:45 or 8 AM     Breakfast with Levi

8:30 AM      Nap

11:00 AM     Nurse

12:45 PM      Nap

3:00 PM     Nurse

5:00 PM     Catnap

5:30 PM     Up from nap

6:00 PM     Dinner with family

7:00 PM     Nurse

7:30 PM     Bed

 

Levi: 3 Years Old!

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Would you look at this handsome baby?! Although, he’s not quite a baby anymore! This past week, we celebrated Levi Hudson’s 3rd birthday. I still can’t believe it when I say, “our three year old.” It is amazing how much he has grown and matured over this last year–even over these past few months. He is truly a little boy now, and that makes me a little sad, but a lot excited for what lies ahead! How do I even begin to cover these past 6 months with Levi (since my last update)? I’ll try:

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EATING 

Levi is still an incredible eater! He is willing to try just about everything and typically likes most things. He eats quite a lot for how skinny he is! His favorite foods are: mac & cheese, chicken nuggets, rice & beans, frozen peas (yes, he LOVES them frozen!), and yogurt. Oh, and donuts, because duh.

Update: at his 3 year well check on 12/09, Levi weighed in at 30 lbs even and 3′ 3″ tall!

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SLEEP

Over the past 6 months, Levi did start needing a later nap time. Now, instead of going down at 12:30 PM, his nap starts at 1. We had a few weeks of him really fighting nap time, where he would stay awake and talk for 2 hours straight. I knew he was not yet ready for NO nap, since he could barely make it to 5 PM without melting into a puddle on the floor. So I decided to keep him up 30 minutes longer and see what would happen…and that did the trick! He now sleeps from 1-2:30/3 PM, depending on the day, and this mama is very happy with that! He also still goes to bed anywhere from 7-7:30 PM and sleeps 12 hours.

MOTOR SKILLS

Since my last update, Levi has started climbing up small ladders on the playground. This is something that kids his age should already be doing for a while now, but we all know Levi does things in his own time when it comes to gross motor skills 😉 Once he gained the confidence and tried it the first time, he’s been up ladders ever since! His fine motor skills haven’t changed much over the past few months. He is still very particular and conscientious about coloring, sticker placement, etc. He actually has been doing a great job about coloring inside the lines lately!

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COMMUNICATION

This continues to be one of Levi’s strong suits! He is a fantastic communicator–very clear and articulate. Over the past 6 months, there is now no limit to his sentence length. He can literally now carry on a full conversation, which blows my mind! He is using 4 syllable words regularly, never missing an opportunity to say, “Oh, that’s interesting!” He picks up on the funniest expressions, of course when we don’t think he’s even listening. Scary!

DISCIPLINE

Dare I say, these last few months haven’t been the toughest we’ve experienced, as far as disciplining Levi. Yes, he is still a 2/3 year old and yes, he has had some really bad days, but overall he has greatly improved with learning how to control his temper. Occasionally, he will act out and hit something when things don’t go his way, but no more full-blown temper tantrums. I think it has helped him immensely to learn how to say what he needs/wants/etc.

We are still working on his friendliness (or non-friendliness) towards those he doesn’t know. Often, if a kid gets in his space on the playground or if he feels anxious when meeting someone new, he will feel the need to “defend his territory” and will spit on them. We do not tolerate that at all! I’ve learned that a little pop on his cheek usually brings him back into check. It’s been difficult to help him work through these situations–usually I try to prepare him as much as possible (ie. “there will be other kids who want to slide too,” “we’re going to meet these new friends today”).

POTTY TRAINING

When we first moved to Miami (more about that later), Levi regressed just a little in his potty training. It was only a few days and only a few accidents, luckily, but I was really worried about the transition! Whenever he would get in trouble for having an accident, he would say, “I don’t want to potty training!” I think he heard his new pediatrician and I talking about his experience with it and decided to be a bit defiant. But thankfully it was short-lived!

INDEPENDENT PLAY

Levi is doing really well with this recently! I started implementing a set IP time from 8:30-9:30 AM, after he eats breakfast and I clean up the kitchen. The key was to play some music on the iPad in his room–I think this helped to make it not feel like a punishment! So now, I put on some Disney music and he does pretty well with playing for the full hour. Usually, before it starts, I head into his room with him and point out some options of things for him to play with. This seems to help to give him some direction.

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CHORES

Still no set “chores,” but we’ve been having Levi clear his dish after each meal, throw things in the trash can, put his cup in the fridge, and clean his room. He also still LOVES to mow the yard with Brian! I tried helping him learn to dress himself, but he was getting really frustrated with this, so I figured we’ll give it a few more months. The next chore I would like for him to learn is how to make his bed!

WHAT HE’S INTO

Levi has recently grown to love anything and everything superheroes! Our neighbor friend’s kiddos have Avengers action figures, which Levi adores. So much so, that is what Brian and I got him for his birthday this year! As far as shows and movies, he enjoyed Super Why!, Justin Time, and Sid The Science Kid, as well as Rio, Toy Story, and Cars during this time period. Other gifts for his birthday included shoes from Grammy and Papi, a Spiderman action figure from Uncle Scott, a tee-ball set from GG and Pepa and Batman Lego Duplos from his Grandma and Grandpa.

BIG CHANGES

Lastly, two of the most noteworthy things that happened to Levi during these last few months were becoming a big brother and moving to Miami! Levi has amazed us with his transition to the big brother role. We thought we were in for it, but he has taken so well to Henry and is truly crazy about him! It has been so fun to watch their relationship grow, just over these past 5 months, as Henry is learning to interact with Levi more. I think things may get a little challenging once Henry is on the move (a.k.a. into all of Levi’s things), but hopefully it won’t be too much of an adjustment on the big bro. Levi loves to talk to Henry and is truly such a helper with him–getting him his paci, blankie, rocking him in his car seat, etc. We are so blessed that it went as smoothly as it did!

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Also during this time, Levi became an official Miamian! The first few weeks in FL were rough on us all, as we were living in weird places and then getting unpacked, but Levi really took everything in stride and did his best. He handled the transition so well, considering everything he knew was changing! Now, he loves Miami! He loves living a few doors down from Jeremiah and Lauren and it goes without saying that he LOVES the beach. He would live there. We were so proud of our big boy!

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Whew! That was a lot this time around! Lots of big changes for our Hudsey over the last few months. Happy 3rd birthday, our sweet boy! We love you with all of our hearts and can’t wait to celebrate many more years with you.

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Henry: Five Months Old

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Our baby is now five months old! We spent his five month “birthday” at his Grammy and Papi’s celebrating Thanksgiving. Here’s what Henry has been up to this past month:

EATING

At his last appointment (his 4 month well check, but technically he was 4.5 months old), Henry weighed 14 lbs 8 oz (20th%) and measured 25.75 inches long (60th%). His doctor was a bit concerned about his weight, since it has leveled out on his growth chart instead of continuing at a steady incline. She said that if he hasn’t shown steady growth at his 5 month well check (5.5 months old), that she wants us to consider starting solids at that time. This had me a bit worried, until I look at Levi’s measurements at the same age–14 lbs even and 25.75 inches long. Henry is literally only a half pound heavier! And we thought all along he has been so much bigger than Levi was! I think both of our boys are just long and lean, so I’m no longer nervous about his weight being in the lower percentiles. For the most part, unless his doctor is extremely alarmed at his 5 month well check, I plan to start baby led weaning with Henry around 6 months, when he shows signs of being ready.

We are officially on a 3/3.5 combo schedule! I’ll post that below. Henry has been doing awesome with extending most feeding cycles throughout the day. I’d love to push him to a full 3.5 or 4 hour schedule by next month (it just works so much nicer with solids), but we’ll see what he thinks of that.

He is an even faster nurser this month–like 8 minutes, tops–which is so nice! And he is also still very sensitive to dairy. Every once in a while, I can get away with a tiny amount of milk or butter baked into something, but I usually always have to give him gripe water the next day.

SLEEP 

Henry struggled with the 4-month sleep regression and 4th wonder week during the beginning half of this month! It really threw off his naps most of all. While it was really frustrating, I tried not to create any bad habits and would keep going in to reinsert his paci as needed. He would almost always fall back to sleep, and if he didn’t he would at least stay in his play pen for the remainder of his nap time. At 5 months, he is now back to sleeping pretty solidly for naps. Every once in a while, he’ll need his paci during a sleep transition.

Nighttime sleep is going well! It’s been about 1.5 months since he has needed a feeding between 7 PM and 7 AM, but he does wake for his paci close to 5 AM every morning. Some nights he has been extending that to about 5:30 or 6 AM, so I’m hoping (*praying*) that just continuing to give him his paci (instead of feeding) will help him just continue to extend his sleep to 7 AM. He is still in his play pen off of our bedroom, since I’m nervous about his early morning wakings disturbing Levi. Lord knows I don’t need both of them up at 5 AM!

WAKE TIME

During leap #4, Henry’s wake time was as little as an hour. He was super cranky and clingy and just seemed to need that extra sleep. After the wonder week was over, he can definitely handle more. Mornings are still about 1 hour, but for all other wake times he can handle about 1.5 hours or more.

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

  • He rolls all over the floor to get his toys.
  • He can sit unassisted for about 1 minute at a time.
  • He has learned to jump in his Jumperoo.
  • All of the sudden, he is smitten with his daddy. He literally just gazes at Brian!
  • Henry is starting to “play” and interact more with Levi.
  • He is growing more and more interested in real food!
  • He has full arm control now, and can grab objects quickly and bring them to his mouth.
  • Henry has much more separation anxiety when he is away from mommy now.

I just knew his skills would explode after that wonder week!

SCHEDULE

7:00 AM     Nurse

8:15 AM      Nap

10:30 AM     Nurse

11:45 AM      Nap

2:00 PM     Nurse

3:30 PM     Nap

5:00 PM     Nurse

7:00 PM     Nurse, right to bed

 

 

Henry: Four Months Old

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Happy 4 months of life to our sweet baby son! Here’s an update on this last month for Henry Owen:

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Our big guy weighed in at 13 lb 13 oz at his “3 month appointment” on 10/07. (Obviously, we’re a few weeks off on his doctor’s visits.) Not much is new in this area. Sometimes he’ll extend to 3.5-4 hours between feedings, but he can’t stay awake long enough to actually start shifting his schedule in that direction just yet. I can’t wait for a 4 hour schedule–it will line up so much nicer with Levi’s schedule–but I don’t want to push it. Hopefully within the next month!

I’m still doing the no dairy thing and it helps him immeasurably. I’ve recently stopped giving his “nightly dose” of gripe water at bedtime, and he has done really well without out! I’m glad too, because that stuff isn’t cheap!

SLEEP

Dare I say, naps are going really smoothly right now! Just two days ago, I decided to stop swaddling him cold turkey. He is rolling both ways now and for a few days had figured out a way to get one arm out of his peanut swaddle, so I decided it was time. He has actually done really well with this! His naps haven’t been as solid the last two days, but as long as I go in, reposition his blankie by his face and give his paci again, he is usually right back to sleep for the duration of the nap. It’s not at the 45 minute mark either, so I’m wondering if he is just not sleeping as deeply right now without the swaddle. Overall, he’s still taking 1.5-2 hour naps. We’ll see how/if he is affected by the 4 month sleep regression…

Little guy really caught on to nighttime sleep within the last 2 weeks! The night that he turned 16 weeks old, I decided we were going to try CIO when he inevitably woke in the night. I just wanted to see how it would go and see if he was ready to go those 12 hours without a feeding (he had previously been sleeping from 7 PM-about 5 AM with no dreamfeed). He had started not wanting to eat at his 7 AM feeding (because he had eaten previously at 5 AM), so this was a good indication to me that he was ready for CIO. The first night, he cried for 40 minutes, with me going in to reinsert his paci every 15 minutes. The second night, he cried for 20, with no paci reinsertion. And the third night, he slept from 7-7! Since that night, he has slept 12 hours, with an occasional waking every couple of nights for his paci, but no feeding! Now to try to get him un-hooked from this paci. I’m so so proud of him!

Also, I no longer offer him a bottle at bedtime–I just nurse him like normal. He started waking up even sooner on nights that I gave him a bottle (I got a little inconsistent with it) and I think it’s because he was having tummy troubles from being overfull. After nursing, he would sometimes drink another 5 ounces from a bottle (probably just because it was there), and I think that messed his stomach up. Who knows! But either way, no more bottle at bedtime.

WAKE TIME

He might have regressed in this area a bit this month? Towards the end of the month, he really could not handle more than 1 hour of wake time. He was entering wonder week #4 (a.k.a. wonder “month”) at this time, so I think that had something to do with it. We’ll see what he can handle once this month is over!

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

Henry’s babbling and cooing have only increased this past month! One really fun thing has been to have him with us at the dinner table (he is usually waking up from his catnap as we are sitting down to eat). Most of the time (he does have his cranky days, though), he LOVES to sit with us and play with his toys and be talked to. I can’t believe in a few short months he’ll be eating with us too!

He has grown to like tummy time a bit more this month. I think it’s because he can roll back and forth now, giving him some more freedom. I usually set some toys in front of him and it keeps him occupied for 10 minutes or so. He has also figured out his Jumperoo a little more as well–so he’ll at least stand in that now unassisted (no jumping just yet).

SCHEDULE

7:00 AM     Nurse

8:00 AM     Nap

10:00 AM     Nurse

11:00 AM     Nap

1:00 PM     Nurse

2:00 PM     Nap

4:00 PM     Nurse

5:15 PM     Catnap

6:00 PM     Up from nap

6:45 PM     Nurse

7:00 PM     Bedtime

We love you Henry Bear!

An Etsy Giveaway!

Happy Monday! It’s a warm sunny day here in Miami–perfect for a little GIVEAWAY from my Etsy shop!

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As many of you know, I opened this shop to help us raise some financial support as we made our move to Little Haiti, Miami to help plant Redemption Church Miami. It really did help us with some of those unexpected expenses that come with moving! Thank you for your business! Now, we hope to begin raising more monthly support to allow Brian to transition from full-time work to full-time ministry over the next year. What has been a tiny creative outlet for me, could become a nice contributor to that financial support we are praying for! So…A GIVEAWAY!

Help to spread the word about the Fill Us Up & Send Us Out shop and enter to win a FREE 8×10 CUSTOM digital print (or any existing print, if you’d prefer that). The custom print can be any bible verse or quote in any color scheme of your choice! Hang it in your home, give it as a gift–lots of possibilities. We’ll work together to make it exactly as you want!

Enter by doing any or all of the following (1 entry per task):
1. Visit my shop and leave a comment on this blog post with your favorite print and either where you would display it in your home or who you would give it to.

2. “Favorite” the Fill Us Up & Send Us Out shop on Etsy!

3. “Like” the Fill Us Up & Send Us Out page on Facebook.

4. SHARE this post on Facebook.

The more tasks you complete, the more chances to win! The giveaway will end at 5 PM on Thursday and the winner will be selected at random and notified on Friday. Happy raffling!

Miami Yourami.

Hi! We’re still here! I haven’t updated in a while about our life in Miami. Actually, my last post about Miami was about how Brian found us a house back in May. So A LOT has happened since then. I do hope to write more consistently now about life in Little Haiti (you know, instead of just writing about my kids) since we’re finally somewhat settled.

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July and August and even September were just about the craziest months I’ve ever lived. I would not advise moving to another state (especially with no secure place to live) 6 weeks after having a second baby. Looneytown. We’re so so thankful for the devoted friends who helped us pack up our belongings week after week before we finally left Louisville on August 12th. Honestly, we were so sad to leave, knowing we were leaving behind some of our greatest friends.

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We arrived in Miami on August 13th, still unsure of where we would be living! Of course we were hoping that we would have closed on our house by that point, but our closing was delayed once again. Were we surprised? Nope. Literally, when we were within hours of Miami, we found out that there was a mission house available for us to stay in–one that is booked nearly a year in advance. Talk about God’s provision! We were disappointed that we had to move our things into storage (instead of into our own home) but so thankful that our family had a place to stay until August 31st if need be.

What we thought would just be a few days in the mission house did turn into weeks when our bank continued to delay the closing on our house. Brian began managing at his new store and the boys and I settled back into a new normal at “home.” Looking back, we needed this time of simplicity and rest to recover from the previous chaotic month. We spent many days at the beach, watching movies, and enjoying some quality time together and in the Word.

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Each week, we were being told the same thing about our house: “we’ll be closing in a few days.” And each week those “few days” would pass. We were finally told our official closing date would be August 31st–our last day in the mission house and the day a tropical storm was projected to hit Miami. So, we would be closing barring any weather that caused the bank to close for the day. Of course! Anyone else see a reoccurring theme here?

We woke on the morning of August 31st to perfectly clear skies! The tropical storm had dissipated and the bank would be open! Praise Jesus. We found out the closing was scheduled for 4 PM, but as 3 PM rolled around, our attorney was still waiting on some last minute documents from the bank to finalize. Our attorney’s office (where the closing would take place) was in Fort Lauderdale, about 45 minutes from the mission house, so we literally had to leave at 3:15 not knowing if we would actually be closing that day or not. We never imagined God would be testing our faith down to the last minutes of this home-buying process, but for sure He was! We found out around 3:40 on our way to Fort Lauderdale that we would be closing at 4. Insane.

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Since that time, we’ve done a little bit of travelling (up north to Orlando) and a whole lot of unpacking. Our house is SO good. I mean, it’s a humble little place–pretty much the opposite of fancy–but it works for us. We can easily grow into it and we have lots of dreams for what it can become one day with some TLC! Lots of TLC.

Our neighborhood is hard. That’s nothing we weren’t expecting, but it’s much more intense than the inner-city neighborhood where we came from (Shelby Park, Louisville). Just the sheer size of it is daunting: 3.5 square miles. 3.5 square miles of families living in poverty, with addiction, and in the face of violence. Just in the past month we have heard of 3 shootings, leaving two high school boys and one man dead. (Cover your ears, mom.) We keep getting the question, “Are you scared to live there?” and our answer is honestly no. But it’s definitely not comfortable. And that’s okay. The people of Little Haiti need the light of Jesus among such darkness. WE need Jesus among such darkness.

Levi and Henry are thriving! We’re finally settling back into our normal routine, while also figuring out our new normal in this new city. The beach has been a place of retreat for us–to get away from the hustle and bustle and just rest. Levi thinks it’s amazing. He also thinks Target is even cooler now that we have to park in a parking garage (I find it more depressing since we need to pay $2 to park in that parking garage). Oh, the little things in life! Levi has shown so much interest in learning Spanish–we love it! He knows several words in Spanish now and asks us for more translations every day. We do the best we can.

Please pray for us and Redemption Church Miami! Pray that we would be bold and that the people of Little Haiti and Miami would visit and be blessed. Pray for our pastor and friend, Jeremiah Taylor, and his wife Lauren, as they press on in leading the church. And pray that we would have many opportunities to meet and build relationships with our neighbors in the coming weeks! We’re so thankful for those of you who are supporting us financially and prayerfully in this season. We’ll be sure to keep you updated!

Henry: Three Months Old

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Today Henry Owen is three months old! He is just the sweetest little thing–we can’t get enough. A lot has changed this month with our little guy. Here’s a recap:

EATING

Henry is still a fast little eater and weighed in at 12 lb 1 oz at his 2-month appointment on 9/3. He has recently started extending some of his cycles to 3.5 hours–usually for one or two cycles of the day. His pediatrician did diagnose him with silent reflux–basically where he’ll try to spit up but then swallow it back down, causing lots of excess acid in his belly. She recommended I try refraining from dairy to see if that might help him. After 3-4 days, he was like a whole new baby! It was amazing! Considerably less crying when going down for naps or bedtime (laying down would wreak havoc on his belly), no more reflux, and he was just much more pleasant to be around. While no dairy is SO hard, I’ve found it is worth it to keep him feeling well!

On that note, this month I’ve found gripe water to be a lifesaver for this boy! After cutting out dairy, he only needs it right at bedtime for the most part. But occasionally he will need a dose during the day as well, to settle down for a nap.

SLEEP

Little guy really caught on to naps this month! I’m still swaddling him, which he seems to like, and have found that he does really well with a light A+A blanket near his face. We turn on the sound machine, sing a short song, and I’ll lay him down with his blanket and paci. He will usually fuss/cry for a couple of minutes (usually once the paci falls out), but for the most part he will go right to sleep as soon as I go in and re-insert his paci. He’ll just nuzzle his face in his blankie–so sweet! For the most part, he’ll sleep 1.5-2 hours without issue.

Nighttime sleep is going really well too. We are still no longer doing the dreamfeed and we are still doing a bottle at bedtime! I hate to pump at 7 PM and then again at 10 PM (I still pump the dreamfeed), so I usually have him nurse at bedtime and then supplement it with whatever he’ll take from the bottle. Most of the time, he’ll at least drink 3 more ounces from the bottle! He had been sleeping 7 PM-3 AM pretty consistently for most of the month, but just last week started extending that. He’ll now sleep from 7 PM to 4 or 5 AM! So we’re getting there! This happened right after wonder week #3, so I’m pretty sure it was all related. It kind of stinks that we’re still waking once in the middle of the night at this point (whereas if he did well with the DF, he’d probably sleep through til 7 AM), but I am really proud of him for sleeping 9-10 hours consistently! And we won’t have to drop the dreamfeed later on, so that’s a nice perk!

WAKETIME

Henry’s able to stay awake for right at 1 hour per cycle now! Sometimes I feel like he could do 1 hr and 15 minutes, but usually his naps are thrown off if I stretch him to that at this point. His first waketime of the day is still a bit of a mystery to me though. That is really his happiest time of day, so his sleep cues are hard to read. From what I can tell, he is still doing better with around 50 minutes of awake time for this first cycle.

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

Our big boy is babbling a whole lot these days! It’s so fun to hear him talking to himself across the room while I’m doing something else. Henry has also learned the art of blowing spit bubbles and drooling this month! Levi never drooled much, so this is new to me. He also discovered his hands and LOVES to intertwine his fingers or pull on his shirts. By the end of the day, his onesies are so stretched out and falling off his shoulders because he pulls at them so much. It’s kind of hilarious!

As I mentioned earlier, he has grown to love his blankies. He loves them nestled right up against his face, while he holds onto them. This is so similar to Levi at the same age! Looks like we might have another blankie baby on our hands!

We took a few trips this month–one to Orlando/my parents house and another quick trip to Deerfield Beach. Henry really did wonderfully on both of them! He napped pretty well considering the new environments and stayed consistent in his nighttime sleep. Couldn’t ask for much more than that!

SCHEDULE

Here’s a rough schedule of what our days look like right now:

7:00 AM     Nurse

7:45 AM     Nap

10:00 AM    Nurse

11:00 AM    Nap

1:00 PM    Nurse

2:00 PM    Nap

4:00 PM    Nurse

5:15 PM    Catnap

6:00 PM    Up from catnap and I try to hold off on feeding him

6:30 PM    Nurse, then bottle

7:00 PM    Bedtime

4 or 5 AM   MOTN feeding

We love our Henry baby so much! He has been such a light in our lives during what has been a pretty chaotic month.

Henry: Two Months Old

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Our sweet Henry boy is two months old today! And we continue to grow more in love with him with each week that passes. Here’s an update on his second month of life:

EATING

Hard to believe, but Henry is now an even faster nurser than last month! Most of the time, he is done within 15 minutes, which is incredible to me. He seems super satisfied when finished and will make it 3 hours until his next feeding, so I know that’s all he needs. Whenever I pump, I’m able to get 4-5 ounces, so I imagine he is getting that much at each feeding as well. We are still doing gas drops with each feeding and that seems to help him considerably. He rarely spits up, but I’ve noticed sometimes he has “wet burps” where he swallows back down what would have been spit up. He is also usually very gassy and uncomfortable in the evening (around 7-8 PM), despite having been burped well all day long, so I’m wondering if he may have some slight silent reflux. I plan to ask his doctor about this at his 2 month check up next week!

SLEEP

Henry is doing fairly well for naps. He still protests for 5-15 minutes before each nap–and I’ve found that going in to reinsert his paci usually amps him up even more–but once he is asleep, he’ll take solid 2 hour naps. I am still swaddling him since he still has a good little startle reflex.

Nighttime has gotten better! I decided to drop the dreamfeed altogether. It just seemed to disrupt his sleep more than helping. I was kind of bummed to do that, because I was hoping his longest stretch of sleep would be when I was sleeping, but he’ll get there. Now, he is in bed around 7 PM each night and on a good night, he’ll wake once between 1:30-3:30. After that feeding, he will usually sleep until 7 AM. I would say this is happening around 70% of the time right now. I have also started to pump what would be the dreamfeed and give that milk to him the following day in a bottle at bedtime. That ensures he gets a good, full feed in him to try to sleep as far into the night as possible.

WAKETIME

We are starting to figure these out a bit more. His first wake time of the day is close to 45 minutes and all other thereafter are about an hour. He has become much more alert this month, so he definitely needs that extra wake time to explore and watch his surroundings. If we are heading somewhere after a feeding, we have to make sure to get in the car right around his wake time (and not after), or else Henry will scream the entire trip. He is very sensitive to being overstimulated at this point!

NEW DEVELOPMENTS

Henry now smiles and coos! It’s so wonderful and adorable. Any time he sees Levi, he just lights up and gives him a big smile. They are sweet brothers! He has also started to track things and will follow us with his eyes around the room.

We moved to Miami this month and we were amazed with how well Henry took the drive down! He was exactly 7 weeks old when we arrived and he barely cried the entire 18 hour drive. The few days we were traveling, we had him in bed with us at night because it was easier than setting the play pen up and trying to get him to sleep in an odd place (did I mention how exhausted I was?!), so it did take several days to get him back on track once we arrived. He was used to all the snuggles at that point!

SCHEDULE

7:00 AM     Nurse

7:45 AM     Nap

10:00 AM     Nurse

11:00 AM     Nap

1:00 PM     Nurse

2:00 PM     Nap

4:00 PM     Nurse

5:00 PM     Nap

6:15 PM     He is usually up from his nap at this point and I try to hold him off to feed

6:30-7:00 PM     Bottle feed and right down to bed

1:30-3:30 AM     MOTN feed somewhere in this span