Monday, 30 January 2017

Parker at 2 years


Parker wasn't super cooperative for his 2 year pictures.  You would think we would be past the uncooperative stage, but apparently not.  

I kind of went over most of the things about Parker in his birthday post, but thought I would add a few extra details.

We went to the pediatrician and the doctor last week.  The pediatrician weighed him at 19lbs 10oz and 30.5 inches tall, but with all of his clothes on.  The doctor weighed him at 18lbs 4oz with less clothes on, which means he actually lost weight when he had that flu.  

Sleep: Parker goes to bed around 8:30 usually, but since I'm at home we are a bit more flexible.  He will wake up anywhere between 7-9.  You never quite know what you are going to get...

He often wakes up at least once in the night and wants milk.  We have been giving him water instead and that seems to do the trick.  

Feeding:  He can eat tons when he wants to.  Then he will go 3 days without eating hardly anything and I don't know how he does it.   He usually really likes pasta, lately seems to do ok with peanut butter sandwiches.  He mostly wants to eat cookies and veggie sticks.  And he loves the baby food packets and wants to eat them all the time, so I have been buying a lot of them lately because I just want him to eat.

I'm trying not to give into making him different food though.  It's hard because we need him to eat, but I don't want to get into the habit of giving in when he just doesn't want to eat what we are having.

He sits at a booster at the table now instead of in his high chair because he seemed to eat better when he was at the table with us.

He's still so small for his age, but when you look back at the size of him a year ago, he has really grown!  I just pulled out the sweater he's wearing in his one year picture for Cooper to wear now.  What a difference!



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Sunday, 29 January 2017

Parker's Birthday

It's about time I actually posted some pictures from all of Parker's birthday celebrations.  The boy was spoiled, like normal.  He had a birthday dinner with Ryan's family, one with my family and then on his actual birthday he got to go to McDonald's.  Lucky duck.
He got a Little People camper from Aunt Amy and Uncle Jamie and absolutely loves it!  It opens up and sings songs to him or he can close it and push it around.  It was definitely a hit.

Grandma got him some coveralls so that he can work outside with Daddy!


Grams and Bapa got him farm plates and swimming lessons.  We start swimming lessons next week, and from the way he's been practicing his floats and bubbles in the tub, I think he's going to love it!
Auntie Tal and Uncle B-Rad got him Hunter boots.  Or got every child that will ever be in our family Hunter boots.  You would think this wouldn't be exciting for a kid, but Parker loves boots because he can put them on himself.

Fine China for us, a Cow Cow plate for Parker.  Not that it mattered.  He wanted nothing to do with his supper.




 He got ice cream cake because he typically likes ice cream more than real cake.  Maybe not the best idea since he'd had the flu that week....I will spare you the details, but an hour later it was pretty disgusting.
 On his actual birthday we went to McDonald's for supper where Parker had fries and chicken nuggets.  


 
And last but not least, Ryan and I got Parker a tricycle for his birthday.  He really liked it even though he can't quite reach the pedals and doesn't know how to use it.  But we are hoping that this summer he can kind of figure it out and bike around the campgrounds with us!

 So that's the birthday that never ended for our sweet two year old!  


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Thursday, 26 January 2017

A Cloth Diapering Update - 2 in Cloth


I have had a request for a post on cloth diapering.  I was actually planning on doing one about how I'm now cloth diapering 2 kiddos at once, so I will just make this more thorough and give all of the details!

I have been cloth diapering Parker since he was just wee.  I've never exclusively cloth diapered and always have some disposables on hand.  I have never cloth diapered at night as I never wanted to deal with figuring out what worked for this, and to me it's not a big deal to throw on a disposable at night.  I also tend to use disposables if we are on extended holidays because washing is an issue, if Parker has a diaper rash that won't go away (he's my sensitive kid and often has rashes, Cooper hasn't had a rash yet), or sometimes if I'm just not feeling the cloth.

Type of Diapers

I have probably over 30 diapers for the two kids plus about 12 cheapies that I really hate because they leak, but will use sometimes around the house if I'm not worried about leaks and having to change Cooper.  I just recently bought about 10 more diapers to help since I have both kids in cloth, so I probably had around 20 before.

I would recommend about 24 diapers to start if you are cloth diapering a young child as babies pee and poop a lot.  You have to change them about every 2 hours.

The diapers I now have are:
-Bumgenius
-Kawaii
-Kawaii bamboo
-Fuzzibunz

I only use pocket diapers.

Bumgenius are the most expensive.  They look nice and are fairly trim.  I find that the elastics don't hold up great though.  You can replace them yourself but they are a bit of work.  

Kawaii are cheap.  They are a bit bulkier but they work really well for the price.  I like that the material is more fleecy because when you get to the point of having to spray poop off it seems to come off a lot easier.  I bought some Bamboo Kawaii as well.  They are more absorbent but take a lot longer to dry because of that, so you wouldn't want all bamboo or else you would be waiting days for them to dry properly.

I just bought the Fuzzibunz used and really like them.  They are my trimmest diapers because they adjust by elastics rather than snaps.  It's not as easy to do, but they do fit nice and it's nice to have a less bulky option.

I highly recommend buying used diapers because you can get some great deals on them.  The more diapers you have the less they are used and the longer they last of course.  You can also go longer without washing.

Other items you need for cloth diapering:
-Diaper bag or pail - I have the Ubbi Pail - It's expensive but I love it
-Pail liners x2 - one will be in the wash and one in the pail
-Small wet bags - at least 2 of these - these are for when you are out and need somewhere to put dirty diapers
-Larger wet bag - for travelling or daycare when you need to fit a whole day or weekends worth of diapers in a bag
-Diaper sprayer - This could be optional but it's really not...you are going to want one of these - I have the Bumkins one and bought it from Babyrama online

My Routine

  • I wash diapers every other or every 3rd day
  • When I take the diaper off Parker I dump whatever poop I can into the toilet and then put the diaper into the pail with the rest of the poop on it.  I used to spray it off right away but a wet diaper sitting for 3 days can be hard on the elastic, plus it's easier to just have to spray diapers all at once when I go to do the wash, and sometimes the poop comes off easier if you wait a bit
  • On wash day I go through the diapers and throw them in the wash, pulling the inserts out as I go.  Coopers exclusively breastfed poop goes straight into the wash.  This is actually ok, I didn't believe it at first!  Any of Parker's poopy diapers I set aside and then take them to spray down
  • Spray the poop off Parker's diapers
  • Update: The wash routine that I used to have was what I basically had researched when I started.  Now when I look, everything that I thought I knew was wrong.  Obviously what I was doing worked to a certain degree, but I have had leaking issues.  I will show my old routine and new routine.
  • Old routine: Regardless of number of diapers, do a large load.  Cold rinse, hot wash with small amount of Nature Clean detergent, Warm cycle
  • New Routine:
    • Short hot wash with small amount of detergent (Tide Original or Tide Free & Clear)
    • Hot wash with about level 4 of detergent
    • Water level based on size of load because you want the diapers to agitate
    • I have slightly hard water so I don't want to do a lot of extra rinses without detergent because that's just adding minerals to my diapers, which I think was causing the leaks.  Apparently you can use detergents with scent now, you just don't want anything with fabric softener.  However, these diapers are going to spend a lot of time on your baby's bottom so having scent free detergent probably isn't a bad thing
  • Hang diapers to dry - inserts can be put in the dryer if needed but shells can't - if possible hang outside, I find they dry nicer, quicker and are nice and white when they are done!
  • Stuff diapers, or if you are like me, wait until you need one and stuff it because you have two kids and don't have time to sit around stuffing diapers
Other things to mention
  • You can't use regular bum cream with cloth diapers so I either use disposables or make sure I'm using a cream that won't hurt my diapers
  • Once in awhile if you have leak or stink build up you may have to strip your diapers - I have only done this once but RLR works amazing.  If you are in my area, Remedy RX in Fergus sells it as well as many other cloth diapering accessories!
  • You can buy used diapers off Kijiji or there are cloth diaper Facebook groups as well where people often sell off some of their used diapers
Cloth diapering seems like a big expense when you are starting out but buying boxes of diapers adds up really quickly!  The extra laundry isn't a huge deal.  I find it a bit worse now with two because I just have so much laundry as it is with both of the boys clothes, but when it was just one and I was on maternity leave it was easy!

The Fluff Love website is a great resource.  It breaks down different detergent options and has instructions on how to strip diapers and has any other information you might need.

It takes a fair bit of research, and this is just what works for me.  So you really have to look at all of the information and see what works best for you and your family!  Good luck!


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Tuesday, 24 January 2017

The Terrific Twos

It's unbelievable how quickly two years goes by.  It's so cliche to say that, but it's true.  I feel like Parker was born yesterday.  And not only is he 2, but he is a big brother!

2 years ago I was in shock when I went into labour.  I didn't know what to expect with a 5 week early baby.  Those first few days and weeks were hard.  And there have been many difficult days since then, but it's the most rewarding thing I've ever done.  

He's growing into a real person before our very eyes and it's crazy to see what a difference a year makes, or even a few months.  At 18 months, he was hardly talking.  He was saying the odd word that we could understand and a lot of words that we couldn't and basically spoke what we called "freaky deaky Parker".  There is a still a bit of Freaky Deaky Parker, but a lot more of what he says is understandable.  He understands most of what we tell him to do.  Whether he listens or not is a different story.


He can recognize all of his family members in pictures, his favourite person is still Bapa and he knows if his truck drives by.  
He still doesn't like to eat a lot of the time, but will catch me by surprise and eat tons all of a sudden.  
He likes to have his stuffed animals lined up on his bed when he goes to bed, but he can't actually sleep with them, so then he throws them all away.
He wants cookies and cheese all the time, but once we give it to him he rarely eats it.
He still loves his mo mo (milk)
He gives Cooper lots of hugs and kisses, covers him with blankets and turns on his vibrating chair for him.  If Cooper isn't in the vibrating chair, then Parker gets in it and turns it on for himself.
He loves trucks, cow cows and doggies.
He needs about 15 minutes of snuggles when he wakes up from his nap.
He likes to play the piano about as much as he likes playing with any of his toys.
He wears 12-18 month clothes and the pants still sometimes fall off if he's not wearing a cloth diaper.  He loves to put his boots on by himself.
He likes to sit on the potty but has no idea what to do with it.
Bath time is his favourite time and he likes to "scrub scrub scrub"
He sings Old McDonald by saying "EI EI EI" and his own songs and he's a dancing machine.
He thinks that if he keeps saying "pease" he will get what he wants.  And if he gives you a kiss he says thank you. So polite.

Favourite things to say:
Please
Thank you
Where'd it go (usually while hiding something behind his back - sometimes just his hands)
That's Daddy's (about something he's been told not to touch - it's always Daddy's)
Don't Touch (about something that he's probably touching)
Cow cow
Baby
Baby sad 

He weights 19lbs 10 oz and is 30.5 inches tall.  Although 19lbs is very small for a two year old, we went to the pediatrician and he actually is still following his curve.  He's just a teeny guy.

I'm pretty sure he hit the terrible two's early because the last few months have been challenging, and maybe it's the Cooper adjustment more than the age, and yet I love this stage that we are in.  He's learning and growing and testing his limits.  But he's so adorable at the same time.  I can't wait to see where the next year brings us!



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Monday, 9 January 2017

Brothers

I put the boys in matching cloth diapers and I couldn't resist the urge to take pictures.







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Sunday, 8 January 2017

Playing Fun

There is a new play centre in town.  I went the other day with a friend and her little boy to give the boys some play time.  


Since school was still out it was crazy busy.  But Parker still had a blast.  At first he was really unsure because there were so many kids there.  But with a bit of help he started climbing the structure and would go down the slide with someone.

By the end he was climbing on his own and with a bit of coaxing would go down the slide by himself.  It was amazing to see his confidence build in the couple of hours that we were there.  Then he would go off and play on his own without worrying where I was.


We will definitely be going back and I hope to make it a weekly thing to give Parker something fun to do besides watching me nurse Cooper at home...



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Saturday, 7 January 2017

Cooper at 2 Months Old

Cooper is already 2 months! How did that happen? He's a pretty easy going baby and I think we are pretty lucky that he's ours!

Weight: 11lbs 12 oz

Height: 22.5 inches

Feeding: He will eat anywhere from anywhere 2-4 hours. Lately he has really spread them out. He can do a 5 hour stretch at night, which makes mama happy.

Sleep: During the day he sleeps like a champ. The night has been a bit more of a struggle. For awhile it was really hard to get him down at night. He would cluster feed until after midnight. Every time he fell asleep and I put him down he would wake up. Currently he is going down okay and the past couple nights actually fell asleep on his own in his crib.  But then he often is awake for a long stretch in the night. He typically wakes up around 3am but I have had nights where he has been awake until 5:30. Luckily Ryan has been off so I have been able to sleep in.
He really wanted to sit up on his own

We moved him to his crib at 8 weeks and he's doing well there.  I think that helps with him falling asleep on his own because I don't jump every time he makes a peep.

Last night he actually slept through the night!  He was in our bed, so it's only half a win...but still, it's a step in the right direction.

Milestones: 
He is smiling but is stingy with them. I want more smiles!
Sleeping a longer stretch at night.
A little bit of cooing. 

Likes: 
The bath now that I'm putting him right in the water instead of on the sling.
Boobs - the kid loves to eat


Dislikes:
Not being fed
Bed time
That's about it, he only fusses if he's hungry and is fussy at night when I want him to go to bed.

His big brother loves him. We hear "baby sad" all the time, which doesn't mean the baby is sad necessarily as Cooper can be sleeping when he says it. He likes to show him off to people and give him kisses and hugs. He tries to help bath him, put lotion or his boots on.  It's really sweet. Luckily, Cooper is tough because Parker can be a bit rough with him if we aren't careful.

I know it only gets better from here and the next couple of months will be fun as Cooper starts interacting more. I can't wait until he can interact with Parker and I'm sure they will be best buds!
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Sunday, 1 January 2017

Our Christmas

Get ready for picture overload.  I started typing out a blog post about our Christmas, but it was getting long and out of hand.  So I will try to keep this short and sweet with a million pictures.  

Christmas is my favourite time of year!  This year our Christmas started on December 23, as it always does with the Christmas eve church service.  Parker enjoyed it and tried to sing during performances, dance on his chair and kept telling me to shhhh.  Then Ryan took him out to run the halls as an hour long church service is too long for a 2 year old.

Christmas eve we spent with Ryan's family.  No pictures unfortunately because someone (me) forgot to put the memory card in the camera.  Parker was spoiled by Grandma and Aunt Amy and we ate a delicious meal prepared by Ryan's mom.


 I asked Parker to hold Cooper for the Christmas tree picture.  Parker loves holding Cooper.  Cooper doesn't enjoy it quite as much.  

Opening his new training pants - I'm more excited for them than he was.

Parker got a new Cow Cow backpack.
Parker and Cooper got a new kitchen to play with.  It amazes me how at this age he is already totally into playing pretend. 
Cooper just sat in his chair.
Trying to get a family picture.  Parker grabbed my hair, which is pretty normal.  
Parker's new sneaks.
At the Cottage on boxing day - it's a Parker in a box.
He waited very patiently for his gifts.
My grandma holding Cooper on Christmas day.
My family - I love these boys!

On Christmas day Parker got bundled up and went for a snowmobile ride with Bapa.

A new Cow Cow!
December 27 we went to my grandma's.  This is the kids table!  I thought Parker wouldn't be able to handle it, but he actually sat there and ate some of his meal.  He was following his big cousin's lead!  But seriously, he did everything that Trace did.  If Trace scratched his head, Parker scratched his head.  It was pretty cute.

It was a fantastic Christmas.  I know that every Christmas from here on will just get better and better because the kids will have more fun every year.  

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