Monday, November 28, 2011

6 months!

Dear little T,

You are so sweet and already half a year old. Wow.

army crawling
You have had two big things happen in the last month. Your first tooth came, the bottom left one. Sharp as ever. And boy do you bite like crazy now. Everything and anything. And now it hurts when you bite our fingers!! But when you pull me in to bite my head you have a funny grin on your face which is a good thing because it hurts so bad lol.

biting grandpa's cards

You also have learned to crawl! You do the army crawl now and you try so hard. It seems to really strain you but you haven't figured out the regular easier way.

Now since you can crawl, all the sudden your brothers toys are with in reach. He's gonna have to get used to that.

You've tried some foods on propose and on accident. Egg yolks, chicken liver, banana and chicken broth on purpose. Yams, squash, kale on accident. Yams gave you a diaper rash though so we'll wait a while before doing it again. And I let you suck on a piece of apple when I make dinner.

trying egg yolks

You seem to enjoy all the foods. Or at least experimenting. You will actually cry when we don't give you food that you want. Luke never did that so we think you are really eager to try new things.

hand in the broth

I can tell you are sleeping less now. But still wanting to sneak in naps when Luke is having a down time so you won't miss anything. And it seems like your teeth are bothering you at night some nights. Your 6 month check up is Friday. We'll see how big you are then.

Pickle is something else to you. When you catch a glimpse of him your expression says 'I can't believe my eyes'. And, of course, you love Misu.

brother and sister
You are just so sweet, we can't believe it's been 6 months. What blessed last 6 months it's been. We love you sweet Taryn.

Mama and Daddy

Monday, November 21, 2011

2 and a half

My dear sweet Luke,

You are something else, something special. We love you just so much more everyday.

You are growing like crazy. And really growing out of your clothes!! We had to say goodbye to all your 2t clothes and welcome in 3t.

You say so much more now. Sometimes I don't even know where you come up with things. Like...

Luke: I want the dryer
Ben: you wanna look at the dryer?
Luke: no I want to get in the dryer

You still have cute things you say like you say your name is 'nuke' even though each day the n is sounding more and more like L. And when you give our dog, Misu, a treat you say 'good Grill, Misu, good grill'. You don't have to ever get those right though because it's just so cute.

You also are quite assertive. I say I'll get it and you say 'No! Let me get it'. Or I say 'oh look it's a dump trunk' you say 'No! That's a dump truck!' You remind me a lot of myself, sometimes I wonder if that's good or not ;)

You like playing with trains, your guitar, cars and all my stuff in the kitchen. 

You watch Kipper, Wonder Pets, Rugats, Wheels on the Bus, Clifford and random Youtube videos of Sesame Street or Trains.  Everything else is 'too scary'.

You love to sing.  You have memorized a lot of songs, all of the ones we sing at Mass... Gloria, Holy Holy, Alleluia, and Lamb of God and you walk around singing those.  You also know most kids songs, Wheels on the bus, twinkle twinkle little star, ba ba black sheep, where is thumbkin, etc.

You LOVE to read. And I am surprised by your interest in longer books now. You love to read all different books from the library, your kids bible your god parents bought you, and almost any book laying around. There's a couple books you like so much you've memorized- Thomas and the school trip, Stuck in the mud, Terrific Trains- and you read them to me.

reading with Daddy

We think you're pretty sharp too. You can count to 20. You learned the ABCs from this song that we listened to about a year ago. You recognize the symbol of pi, thanks to Daddy. And your memory is astounding. How do you remember so much from so long ago?

You are potty graduated. You basically 'trained' yourself. But we've always been ECing so it came pretty natural.

Your favorite foods are eggs, bacon, sausage, bananas, apples, pears, nuts, cheese, and chocolate just to name a few. You like most veggies. And you even sneak tastes of raw eggs and ground beef. You eat pretty well but Mamas milk is still #1. When you were sick recently I asked you 'can you take this medicine before you nurse' You said 'no no no the milk is good.'  I am so very thankful you are still nursing, you have only gotten sick once in the last year and it wasn't so bad.

Cooking is also something that you have always and still enjoy doing. Recently you learned how to make Mama coffee by yourself. And cracking eggs is your new thing. You are very involved in the kitchen and I love that.

You are the big brother around here and you are such a great one too. When Taryn cries you say 'she needs her Mama' or 'she needs to nurse'. You are always concerned when she's not around and with Daddy. You always say Where's Taryn?

And even though you both are my babies, you'll always be our first born. You are the one that made us parents.  You'll always have a special place in our hearts. We love you more than you know.


Mama  and Daddy

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Sick and Today

We have been sick. We all caught a cold. Taryn seeming to get it first. She got a lot of snot and a cough. Then we all got it, not thinking it was too bad. Boy was that a mistake. My husband came down with walking pneumonia after a couple of little sleep days and lots of stress with work. He was really sick for a couple of days. He actually went into the ER in the middle of the night because he couldn't breathe because he felt so sick. They gave him and inhaler and antibiotics that helped immediately. I slept terrible that night which probably added to my sickness and about a week later I suffered from a sinus infection. Thankfully my husband was about recovered. Luke was sick too with that nasty two year old snot and cough. Both kids had it very minor, thank you breastmilk!!
I still have sinus congestion. I actually got pretty bad and ended up on antibiotics too which I am terrified of. I know they disrupted my gut a little and that's a shame. Lots of probiotics for me and bone broth.
Today my husband is healthy back at work, my kids are healthy and I am almost better just still have a little congestion. We went to the library this morning for story time and to return some overdue stuff. I forgot how hard it is to get two kids out of the house. My house is currently a disaster again. I probably should do something to help the stress level when I wanna go somewhere. Hopefully it gets easier when they get older.
Taryn is really trying to crawl, see her at the library....

Monday, November 14, 2011


This is for Let's Take the Metro's challenge for posting 100 things I'm thankful for on Thanksgiving.

These are not necessarily in order. :)

1. God, my creator

2. Jesus, my savior

3. The Holy Spirit, my companion

4. My spiritual mother, Mary.

5. My husband. I would be nothing with out him. He is the best thing that's ever happened to me.

6. Luke, my sweet first born

7. Taryn my little love

8. My Dad. He raised me and I am forever thankful.

9. My step mom Lisa. My dad couldn't have married a better person.

10. My grandparents, my Catholic role models.

11. My grandma. She is awesome because she does things the old fashioned way so I've learned so much from her.

12. My inlaws. They are the best. So great, I think of them as my actual parents too.

13. My brother in law and

14. sister in law and

15. my niece Kenzie

16. and nephew Kruz

17. Usa. My best friend.

18. Lisa my best mommy friend and my all day texting partner.

19. Friends

My cousins
20. Jill & Bryan

21. Erin

22. Laurel

23. Bradley

24. Amy

25. Elisa

26. Holly

27. Heather

28. And all their kids

29. My Uncle Chris

30. Aunt Debbie

31. Cousin Frankie

32. Cousin Carley

33. Aunt Kathy

34. Aunt Janese

35. Uncle Ted

36. Grandpa Raymond

37. Being Catholic.

38. My cat Pickle

39. My doggy Misu.

40. Having a house.

41. My husband has a job.

42. I get to stay at home with my kids.

43. Coffee

44. That we have savings.

45. Our local library. The story time is awesome.

46. Water. We had our water shut off last week because we forgot to pay te bill lol. Anyway I felt grateful that it was so easy to call and pay. Some people cant pay and just have to have it shut off :(

47. My car.

48. The bible.

49. The daily reflections website I read every day.

50. The Internet.

51. One of my really awesome Mama friends Holly, her daughter Aiden and her husband Josh. They are. Such an awesome Jesus loving family.

52. The house I grew up in.

53. The time I got to spend with my mom before she died.

54. Coming from a small town.

55. My basketball career. More like I'm thankful basketball was my life growing up.

56. Love.

57. For God letting me know that my husband was the one the first time we hung out.

58. Natural Family Planning. Such a gift to my marriage.

59. Thankful for the awesome farm we live close to that provides is with high quality meat. Grass fed beef, pastured pork and chicken and eggs!

60. That we got a once a month gig at the farm. We get paid in meat and eggs.

61. That we live close to a raw milk provider for my husband. He loves the milk.

62. Thankful we live close to a farm that does a year round CSA.

63. Finding out about living Primal.

64. Facebook. Yeah I know, pretty lame, but I can get updates about family really fast.

65. That we have heating.

66. That we have power.

67. That my dad was a math teacher

68. And my basketball coach

69. A family photo session

70. The Solemnity of Christ the King

71. My friend Usa is spending the holiday with us and my family.

72. Our neighbors. They make us feel safe here.

73. Hot showers

74. That we can afford food especially for our kids.

75. That I got to grow up with just my dad. Im not glad my mom died but I'm lucky to have had such a special childhood with my Dad.

76. That I know how to cook

77. My friend Jocelyn and her family

78. That God is ever so forgiving.

79. Parenting blogs I read

80. Paleo blogs I read

81. That I always have something to talk about with my husband.

82. Summer

83. That it rains most of the time instead of snows where I live.

84. Flowers

85. My summer garden

86. The Sun

87. The moon. My son loves the moon.

88. The Saints that show us how to live.

89. The Rosary

90. The Divine Mercy Chaplet

91. The people who have fought for our country.

92. Bacon.

93. Friends.

94. Sunday dinners at my grandmas as a kid.

95. my birth mom for choosing life

96. Father Theo

97. Family Time

98. That Luke can say four prayers perfectly. Hail Mary, Our Father, Grace and Bless himself.

98. Sunday's

99. Beautiful falling leaves

100. The Church liturgical seasons

There are so many things I'm thankful for and so many more things I've probably forgot.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Growing Up in the Kitchen

Welcome to the November Carnival of Natural Parenting: Kids in the Kitchen
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants have shared how kids get involved in cooking and feeding. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

My daughter watching me cook!
I love to cook and try new things in the kitchen.  I always have.  When I was a kid, I used to watch some cooking show on TV that always led to me asking to make dinner that night.  It was just me and my dad when I was growing up.  My dad was all for my experimentations because he didn't like to cook.

I worried that once I had kids it would mean less time in the kitchen.  In fact, people even told me that they don't have time to cook anymore, that life with kids was too busy for home cooked meals.

But I figured out how to do it.  You let your kids help!

One of my son's first times stirring
Ever since Luke was a baby, he's been in the kitchen with me.  Even as far back as I can remember I used to hold him while I made coffee, explaining everything as I was doing it.  Then when he got a little older he sat in the  Bumbo holding (and chewing) on a spatula watching what I did.  Then he got a little older where he could stand and almost walk, he played with stuff in the sink.  

Concentrating on cracking eggs
The next stage was the hardest for me.  He was able to walk and stand sturdy on a chair.  He wanted to help me stir in the hot pan.  I let him, even though I worried a little about him burning himself.  But I figured once he did it, he'd learn exactly what he needed to.  Don't touch hot pans!  He did it once in the early cooking days, and he rarely ever burns himself now, probably about as often as I do now.

Now he's always in the kitchen helping me by using knives to cut, stirring, and his latest obsession- cracking eggs.  He also likes to just play around, he likes to get into my spice cupboard and taste spices.  He wastes things sometimes, too, but it's worth it to me to let him experiment.

Even though he's only almost 2 1/2, I know he has an appreciation for food and what it takes to make a meal.  I want him to grow up with the knowledge of how to cook and have the tools to nourish himself. 

Sometimes things go slower or get way more messy than if it were just me but what a beautiful thing to see a child learning to create in the kitchen!

How do your kids help you?

Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:
(This list will be live and updated by afternoon November 8 with all the carnival links.)
  • Baking & letting go — Cooking with kids can be a mess. Nadia at Red White & GREEN Mom is learning to relax, be patient, and have fun with the process.
  • Family feeding in Child of Mine — Lauren at Hobo Mama reviews Ellyn Satter's suggestions for appropriate feeding and points out where her family has problems following through.
  • Children with Knives! (And other Kitchen Tools) — Jennifer at True Confessions of a Real Mommy teaches her children how to safely use knives.
  • "Mommy, Can I Help?" — Kat at Loving {Almost} Every Moment writes about how she lets her kiddos help out with cooking, despite her {sometimes} lack of patience!
  • Solids the Second Time Around — Sheryl at Little Snowflakes recounts her experiences introducing solids to her second child.
  • The Adventure of Toddler TastebudsThe Accidental Natural Mama shares a few things that helped her daughter develop an adventurous palate.
  • A Tradition of Love — Kelly at Becoming Crunchy looks forward to sharing the kitchen traditions passed on from her mom and has already found several ways to involve baby in the kitchen.
  • The Very Best Classroom — Alicia C. at McCrenshaw's Newest Thoughts reveals how her kitchen is more than a place to make food - it's a classroom!
  • Raising Little Chefs — Chef Mike guest posts on Natural Parents Network about how he went from a guy who couldn't cook to a chef who wanted to teach his boys to know how the food we love is made.
  • In the Kitchen with my kids — Isil at Smiling like Sunshine shares a delicious soup recipe that her kids love.
  • Papa, the Pancake Artist — Papa's making an incredible breakfast over at Our Mindful Life.
  • Kids won't eat salad? Try this one! — Tat at Mum in Search is sharing her children's favourite salad recipe.
  • Recipe For a Great Relationship — Cooking with kids is about feeding hearts as well as bellies, writes Hannah at Wild Parenting.
  • The Ritual of Mealtimes — Syenna at Gently Parenting Twins writes about the significance of mealtimes in her family’s daily rhythm.
  • Kid, Meet Food. Food, Kid. — Alburnet at What's Next? panicks about passing on her food "issues" to her offspring.
  • Growing Up in the Kitchen — Cassie at There's a Pickle in My Life shares how her son is growing up in the kitchen.
  • Harvesting Corn and History — From Kenna at School Garden Year: The kids in the school garden harvest their corn and learn how much history grows in their food.
  • My Guiding Principles for Teaching my Child about Food — Tree at Mom Grooves uses these guiding principles to give her daughter a love of good food and an understanding of nutrition as well as to empower her to make the best choices for her body.
  • Kitchen Control — Amanda at Let's Take the Metro writes about her struggles to relinquish control in the kitchen to her children.
  • Food — Emma at Your Fonder Heart lets her seven month old teach her how to feed a baby.
  • Kitchen Fun? — Adrienne at Mommying My Way questions how much fun she can have in a non-functional kitchen, while trying to remain positive about the blessings of cooking for her family.
  • Kitchen Adventures — Erica at ChildOrganics shares fun ways to connect with your kids in the kitchen.
  • Kids in the Kitchen: Finding the Right Tools — Melissa at Vibrant Wanderings shares some of her favorite child-sized kitchen gadgets and where to find them.
  • The Kitchen Classroom — Laura at Authentic Parenting knows that everything your kids want to learn is at the end of the ladle.
  • Kids in the Kitchen — Luschka from Diary of a First Child talks about the role of the kitchen in family communication and shares fun kitchen activities for the under two.
  • Our Kitchen is an Unschooling Classroom. — Terri at Child of the Nature Isle explores the many ways her kitchen has become a rich environment for learning.
  • Montessori-Inspired Food Preparation for Preschoolers — Deb Chitwood at Living Montessori Now shares lots of resources for using Montessori food preparation activities for young children in the kitchen.
  • My Little Healthy Eater — Christine at African Babies Don't Cry shares her research on what is the best first food for babies, and includes a healthy and yummy breakfast recipe.
  • Two Boys and Papa in the Kitchen: Recipe for Disaster?MudpieMama shares all about her fears, joys and discoveries when the boys and handsome hubby took over the kitchen.
  • Food choices, Food treats — Henrietta at Angel Wings and Herb Tea shares her family's relationship with food.
  • learning to eat — Catherine at learner mummy reflects on little M's first adventures with food.
  • The Night My 7-Year-Old Made Dinner — Melodie at Breastfeeding Moms Unite! shares how her 7-year-old daughter surprised everyone by turning what started as an idea to play restaurant into pulling off making supper for her family.
  • Cooking With a High-Needs Toddler — Sylvia at MaMammalia describes how Montessori-inspired activities and a bit of acceptance have helped her overcome hurdles in cooking while caring for a "high-needs" child.
  • Kids in the Kitchen – teaching healthy food choices — Brenna at Almost All The Truth shares her belief in the importance of getting kids into the kitchen using her favorite cookbook for kids to develop healthy food choices now and hopefully into the future.
  • Make Milk, Not War — Tamara at Tea for Three remembers the daily food fights as she struggled to feed a picky eater.
  • teaching baby birds about good food. — Sarah at Small Bird on Fire writes about the ways in which her family chooses to gently teach their son how to make wise food decisions.
  • 5 Ways to Enhance Your Baby or Young Toddler's Relationship with Food — Charise at I Thought I Knew Mama shares simple ways to give your child a healthy beginning to her lifelong relationship with food.
  • Toddler at the Table: 10 Creative Solutions — Moorea at Mamalady shares tips for preventing meal-time power struggles.
  • How My Child Takes Responsibility During His Mealtime... — Jenny @ I'm a full-time mummy shares how she teaches and encourages her 32 months old son on adopting good manners and responsibilities during his mealtimes...
  • megan — Kristin at Intrepid Murmurings shares six tips for overcoming some of the the difficulties of cooking with multiple young sous chefs, and a recipe they all can agree on!
  • How BLW has made me a better parent — Zoe at Mummykins shares how baby-led weaning has changed her approach to parenting.
  • My Budding Chef — Jenny at Chronicles of a Nursing Mom is no cook but is happy that her daughter has shown an inclination and manages to whip up yummy goodies for their family.
  • Kids in the Kitchen: An Activity for Every Age — Gaby from Tmuffin describes how she keeps her kids busy in the kitchen, whether they are one week old or two years old.
  • The Phantastically Mutlipurposed Phyllo — Ana at Pandamoly shares how Phyllo is used to create enticing dishes at home! Anything can be made into a Struedel!
  • Kitchen Kids — Laura from A Pug in the Kitchen shares her children's most favorite recipe to make, experience and eat.
  • Independence vs. Connection in the Kitchen: won't you please get yourself your own snack already? — Lisa at Organic Baby Atlanta wishes her daughter would just go make a mess in the kitchen. But her daughter only wants to do it together.
  • Grandma Rose's Kitchen — Abbie at Farmer's Daughter reminisces about her childhood and dreams of filling her kitchen with people, love, noise, and messes.
  • Healthy Food Choices for Kids — Jorje offers one way to encourage children to make their own healthy food choices at
  • Cooking food to thrive rather than survive — Phoebe at Little Tinker Tales is trying to foster a lifetime of good food habits by teaching her children about the importance of avoiding junk, cooking healthy meals, and learning about the whole food process.
  • Evolution of a self-led eater — Sheila at A Gift Universe shares the story of how her son grew from nursing around the clock to eating everything in sight, without her having to push.
  • 10 Ways Tiny Helps In The Kitchen — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama explores the ways in which her toddler actively participates in kitchen-related activities.
  • The Complexity of Feeding a Child — Feeding children a healthy diet is no straight-forward task, but Lisa at My World Edenwild shares some general guidelines to help your child thrive.
  • Lactation CookiesThat Mama Gretchen shares a fun recipe that will benefit both mamas and babies!
  • The Best Books and Websites to Inspire Kids in the Kitchen — Need inspiration to get your kids in the kitchen? Dionna at Code Name: Mama rounds up some of the best books and websites that can serve as a source for ideas, recipes, and cooking with littles fun.
  • A 4-year-old's smoothie recipe — Jen at Grow With Graces and her son set out to make a smoothie without the usual ingredients. She let him improvise. See how it turned out.
  • Independent Food Preparation (My Toddler Can Do That?) — Megan at Montessori Moments shares simple ways for children to prepare their own healthy snacks.
  • Follow Your Gut — Amy at Anktangle shares her philosophy about intuitive eating, and how she's trying to foster her son's trust in his own inner wisdom when he feels hungry.
  • A TODDLER-STYLE LUNCH + RECIPEManic Mrs. Stone photographs how to have messy fun during lunchtime with a helpful toddler.