Friday, May 31, 2013

NICU Tips Part Two

Round 2 of tips from a mama of a NICU Grad:)
  • If you are buying clothes for a NICU baby stay away zippers. Snaps are the best way to go. With snaps all the leads/tubes can be easily threaded through. We even started to work around the tubes and put onsies and cute outfits on him too! Socks and hats are a fun way to add a family touch to him when you are not there
  • A blanket makes the baby feel at home. Gat was not able to spend the first 6 months of his life at home. So I was worried he would not know what home felt like. To help him we would make sure he always had a blanket washed from home. To this day he sleeps best with those blankets we rotated through. We had 4 blankets we rotated through. 2 of those were ones that covered his isolate when he couldn't use blankets. It is nice to always have one there while you wash the others. Plus we had a lot of receiving blankets we rotated through too. The heavier blankets were always under him and the receiving blankets on him.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

May Love List

Things Mal loved this past month

  1. Being outside has been great, this day the girls were playing hockey. They had to wear their bike helmets because I wouldn't let them wear Jesse's.
  2. We have been visiting Boulder Ridge Animal Park weekly and we finally took Jess with us. He loved the birds, you can see by his face. I made fun a little bit and told him I would take him there if he was ever feeling down. Seriously though, he was smiling and laughing the whole time. No this does not make me want a bird.
  3. Jo has been playing t-ball. She was excited about playing. . . now she wants to be done. I just told her that the game that was cancelled got rescheduled, she replied with "WHHHYYYY???!". I told her she had to finish this season but she doesn't have to play next year. She told me she just wants to play softball.
  4. We went and watched the airplanes one day and Poppy Ladean (FIL) came bearing snacks on his lunch break.
  5. We got a new bunny! His name is Meiko and is the perfect little bunny.
  6. Last but not least, RAE TURNED THREE! I can hardly believe it has been three years. 

What Jamie loved about the month of May
  1. Dressing Stella and Ellie up in the little Amish dresses that Ellie's Grandma bought them
  2. Visiting Boulder Ridge Animal Park with the Schrocks
  3. My new sandels
  4. Lunch and Gatsby with the hubs, our first date since January!
  5. Spending the day at the pond with the whole family
  6. Spending the day at Hooterville with Tim's family

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

A Day in the Life of Jamie

I wake up in the morning feeling like P Diddy...just kidding I feel nothing like him.

5:45 AM: I wake up to Tim's alarm going off. Neither of us gets out of bed.
6:00 AM: Tim's second alarm goes off and he gets up.
6:30 AM: Tim comes back up stairs to get dressed and to wake me up
6:40 AM: We're both downstairs, I pack his lunch and we chat a little bit while he finishes getting ready
6:50 AM: He's out the door and headed into work. I pour myself a cup of coffee and if I'm lucky I have about a half hour to an hour to myself. I enjoy the silence, read my Bible and spend some time in prayer
7:30 AM: Stella is usually awake by now. She's an early riser, but likes to just chill in the morning. I usually put in a movie or turn on cartoons. She's content watching TV and check Facebook, Twitter, and my email
8:00 AM: Ellie arrives. Her and Stella both head straight for the table to eat breakfast. I empty the dishwasher while they eat
8:30 AM: Breakfast is over and the girls race off to the living room to play while I clean up.
9:00 AM: If it's warm and sunny, we sometimes get around and go to the park to play all morning. Otherwise we read lots of books, they play or watch Mickey Mouse
10:00 AM: It's time for their morning snack, just something small, otherwise neither of them will eat a very good lunch. And then lots more playing, reading and making messes. Thankfully they play well together, so while they play I usually do some laundry, and catch up on blogging and freelance stuff.
11:30 AM: I start preparing lunch. When it's ready I call them to the table, and I clean up while they eat
12:00 PM: Lunch is usually done and cleaned up. We all three clean up the morning toy mess. And then it's nap time for the girls.
12:15 PM – 2:15 PM: While they nap I typically shower and get dressed (yes I have been in my PJ's up to this point), eat my lunch, watch the latest episodes of my favorite TV shows, work on blog and freelance stuff, or I nap too
2:15 PM: Ellie wakes up from her nap, and she chills on the couch content watching cartoons or playing by herself until Stella gets up. I keep working on the computer, unless she wants to read.
3:15 PM: Stella is usually up by now. I bring her downstairs, Ellie is always super excited that's Stella is finally up. It's afternoon snack time, so the girls climb up to the table while I get their snacks ready.
3:30 PM – 5:15 PM: Snack time is over. If it's nice we usually get head outside to play. Once in awhile we'll sit and color or paint, but most of the time they just play on their own or we read books....we read a lot of books. I usually give them another snack in this time frame too. Otherwise it's way too long before they eat dinner
5:15 PM: The three of us clean up the mess from the afternoon
6:00 PM: Ellie leaves for the day and I start dinner. Sometimes I'll start it before she leaves if it's something that will take awhile, or if I'm really hungry and don't want to wait for Tim to get home
7:00 PM: Tim gets home from work and we eat dinner. After dinner Tim and Stella play while I clean up and load the dishwasher and start it.
8:00 PM: We're all on the couch watching TV, Tim plays games on his phone
8:30 PM: One of us takes Stella up to bed, usually Tim.
10:00 PM: If we haven't already fallen asleep on the couch, Tim and I head up to bed

This is my usual Monday/Tuesday/Friday, because I babysit those days. As you can tell, my day is a lot less hectic and not as entertaining as Mallorie's. I like to stick to a routine on the days I'm home. I get more accomplished and I find my house stays cleaner, which I like.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

A Day in the Life of Mallorie

It's Wednesday and Mallorie wakes up to the alarm going off around 6:30am. She looks at it, then the clock and calculates the latest possible time she can get out of bed. No later than 7:15. Resets her alarm and she falls right back to sleep no problems at all with that. She wakes up to the "Ukulele"  ringtone she has set for Jesse. Because she has to play a mind game with herself to get out of bed and make herself think Jesse is actually calling her. It takes all the energy she has to get out and into the shower.

In the shower she thinks about what her day will be like. Where she has to be and when she has to be there. While conditioning her hair she hears a sweet, "Good morning mama". Mallorie thinks, aww good she is in a good mood and replies, "Good morning Rae.". But, Mal also knows that the morning is starting and it is about to get crazy for a bit. Who is she kidding their life is always pretty crazy, sometimes a little self induced.

She hurries and gets herself around. Scrambles to get Rae dressed and wake Jo up. For once she was prepared and had outfits picked out ready for their early morning. She gets the diaper bag around for feeding therapy and they have 10 minutes now to get out of the house. Bottle, formula, bib, diapers, and wipes are all put in the bag. Jo and Rae are begging for breakfast but, Mallorie tells them get your shoes on and we will get donuts on the way, as she is running up the stair to get Gatlyn. Going through the routine of getting him out of bed and dressed she yells at the girls to get ready. She rushes downstairs and is still yelling at the girls to put their shoes on as she runs to put Gat in the car. The girls make their way out and they get buckled in. Of course she forgot the pump upstairs and has to run back upstairs and grab all of that supplies and everything else she forgot. Finally she is in the car and they are 2 blocks away from the house when she realizes she forgot something. So of course she goes back and get it. Mallorie gets back in the car and looks at the clock, wow she is actually on time. But shoot, she forgot makeup, "oh well not the first or last time that will happen" she thinks.

Next stop Heidi's Farmstand to get some donuts. Then they are on their way to Grand Rapids for feeding therapy. Everyone was great during therapy and now they have their next appointment in a hour. So they kill sometime in the food court at Starbucks and the girls play in the windows saying hi to people. Mallorie takes a call from her big sister where they talk and laugh for a little bit, until Mal decides she should finish that cheesecake brownie. They wait until somewhere opens Mal can get a pop and then head to the Helmet appointment. They make there way up to the office and have perfect timing with barely a wait. She loves when she times things that well. The appointment takes some time and the girls are getting a little restless so they play I spy and read books to kill time. After finding out Gat's head once again has no change they head out.

Off to home they go :) The rest of the afternoon consist of naps for Gat and trying to catch up on everything around the house. The girls spend the day watching movies because the weather is just yucky! Mallorie starts dinner for everyone and Jess gets home. They eat randomly because Jo is supposed to have a tball game. Although she is not really looking forward to sitting in the rain, she is secretly hoping it's cancelled. A few minutes later game is cancelled, she then makes the appropriate texts to tell everyone who was coming.

The rest of the night is spent doing laundry and laying around. Bedtime starts around 7:30 and tonight Mal is ready for it! The girls are getting more wild than usual. Nights like these the silence after they are finally in bed is heavenly. Gat is in bed by 8 and the house is silent. Ahhh, Jess and Mal can sit and relax. One on the iPad the other on the computer though. She listens to Jess talk about his day and what went on at work. But mostly they are quiet, the quiet is what each of them crave by the end of the night.

All in all it was a great day for the Schrock's. Mallorie is a little more tired this particular night because of the running around. Getting 3 kids in and out of the car is pretty tiring in itself. At the end of the day though she knows she is so lucky to have great kids. And tonight she feels confident her and Jess are doing something right.

Around 9:30 they head up to bed and it might just be early enough to. . . well you can make up the ending from there;)

Thursday, May 23, 2013

34 Weeks and Counting

May 21st marked 34 weeks. Less than 6 to go!

Another bathroom selfie for ya :)
I'm starting to feel really pregnant. Which is weird for me, because with Stella I never really felt that big or was ever uncomfortable. (I know you can all hate me for saying that). But this time around, I'm always being kicked in the ribs, and I feel like this baby is going to punch it's way out me.

A couple weeks ago, I mentioned I was having second ultrasound. I had to have it because my placenta was lying too close to my cervix. Thankfully, my placenta has moved up, although not as far up as my doctor had hoped it would. However, she feels totally comfortable letting me go into labor. If it hadn't moved up enough I would have to have a planned c-section. A c-section is something I really, really, don't want to have. I know they're super routine now days, but they make me nervous, and from what I hear the recovery sucks. There is still a chance that I may end up having one if I start bleeding while in labor, which would be scary, but my doctor doesn't think that will happen. I have yet another ultrasound scheduled at 36 weeks, so that they can keep on eye on things.


A short Love Bean update for ya...she had a well child check up today. At 20 months she weighs 22.6 lbs, and is 32 1/2 inches long. She's a petite little thing. She loves to read, climb and to jump off of things. I'm actually impressed with her landings most of the time, she lands with both feet planted and bends her knees. She's quite the dare-devil. Maybe we really do have a future gymnast on our hands?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Kids Talk...Sometimes too much

Setup: I surprised the girls and got them breadsticks while we were having a girls night.

Jo: "Everytime you buy breadsticks I get full but I can't stop eating them. Next time you guys can buy your box and then just order me a little package of breadsticks. I like them a lot but my belly hurts."


We were playing Monopoly (Disney addition because for some reason it was that or Electronic-and i hate the electronic) with Jamie, Tim, baby bro, Jess. Jesse was Peter Pan. Owen accidentally moved Jesse's piece (Peter). Jess found it necessary to say, "Keep your hands off my Peter."

I look at Jess with "the eyes" and say, "Jesse Dean that was inappropriate."

A week later the girls and I were watching Return to the Neverland (2nd Peter Pan movie) and Jo comes up to me. She said, "Mom, um you told my dad it was inappropriate to say Peter."

I responded with, "Umm, yah. Let's watch the movie." Then proceeded to call Jamie in the kitchen. . . it was so funny!


Back story: Jesse's parents maintain their church's cemetery.

The kids were playing house while I was doing dishes. I heard Jo on the "phone" saying, "Hi Dad, yah, ok, I will meet you at the cemetery in  a little bit."

Normal? Probably not, but, that is exactly why I love her. You never know what she is going to say. Love It!


Me, "Raelin Deann take care of your plate right now. This the last time I'm telling you."
Rae, "I'm the witch call me witch."
Me, "Ok witch take care of your plate."
Rae, "okay"


Andi, "Haha, you're funny."
Me, "You are funny."
Andi, "Uh, no I'm not. . . well. . .maybe just a little bit."


Rae, "UGGHH, Shtelly whipped my boot."
Me, "Stella ripped your boot?"
Rae, "Yah. When she waz at my housse in my woom she whipped my boot. I yelled at her and said, 'Go in timeout Shtelly.'"
Me, "Rae you can't yell at other kids and put them in time out. You're not their mom honey."
Rae, " Yes I am the mom."
Me, "No you're not Rae. Auntie J is her mom."
Rae, "Ok. You be the mom and I be the mom. How do you like that good idea?!"
Me, "Uhh, probably not."

Monday, May 20, 2013

Would You (or Do You) Spy on Your Kids?

Growing up we had a lot of freedom as kids and teens. Our parents were pretty laid back and we didn't have a ton of rules. Thinking about it, I can only recall two. No talking on the phone after 9pm, and we had curfews. Actually, I had an early curfew (my parents weren't the biggest fan on my boyfriend), Mal had a later curfew than me, Alexis had a later curfew than her, and well Owen didn't have one.

However, we didn't have Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and cell phones. We had email and MSN and AOL chat. Our mom knew our password, but didn't use them and never demanded to see what were up to.

I used to think that I would check my kids' Facebook and keep close tabs on their online lives. I thought by cyber stalking my own kids, I would somehow be able to make sure they aren't sexting, getting cyber-bullied, or accessing websites that they shouldn't. But, I already find my views on this evolving and Love Bean is far from the age where this even becomes a reality for us. What made me change my opinion? Here a few things, in no particular order.
  1. I realized it's kind of naive: Kids often know the technology better than their parents. It's so easy for kids to create fake accounts, change usernames and passwords, or hide things from their parents online. 
  2. The relationship I want to have with my kids: My parents and I had would have a completely different relationship had they demanded to read my chats, emails and listen in on my phone calls. There would have been no trust, and I would have held a lot of resentment towards them. I appreciated the trust, openess and the willingness to let me make my own mistakes too much to not give my kids the same.
  3. I read this article: It underscored just how creepy and over protective all that snooping is. 
  4. Disappointment is worse than punishment: At least for me, the idea of disappointing my parents was far worse than any punishment they could have given me if I had been caught doing something bad online. That was enough to keep me from doing it. Crossing my fingers my kids have the same respect for me :)
Part of growing up and learning how to be a successful adult is making mistakes when you're a kid. Yeah, it's super stressful for parents, but isn't there a lot about being a parent that's stressful? I'm not saying that if one of the Beans abused the trust and respect we give them, that they wouldn't be disciplined, because they would be. I'm just saying, they'll get the chance to mess up before they're put on virtual lockdown.

We'd love to hear what your approach is...

Friday, May 17, 2013

$50 Groceries

It works best for my schedule to go grocery shopping on Wednesday or Thursday. So a week refers to Wednesday to Wednesday or Thursday to Thursday. Meal ideas use a combo of the week's groceries and ingredients I already have on hand.

This week I had a quiet a few "must have" items, and I didn't really take the time to plan what else I was going to pick up. On top of that Stella had her first major public temper tantrum. I think if you compare the picture below to past weeks, you'll notice a big difference. I mean 5 different snacky items and no fresh fruit? That's not like me. I do have a pint of strawberries, a half of a watermelon left from last week. That makes up for it a little bit, right?

Quick Facts:  
  • Total Spent: $48.62 ($1.38 under budget)
  • Total Savings: $13.44
  • Savings Break Down:  $4.00 from Mperks, $9.44 from shopping the sale ad
My Must Haves: 
  • Toilet Paper
  • Frosted Mini Wheats (a special request from Tim)
  • Vegetable Oil 
  • Toothpaste
  • Toothbrushes
  • Popcorn Oil (another request from Tim)
  • Napkins
Meal Ideas for This Week:

In the comments of my last This Week for $50 post, someone asked about what Tim takes in his lunch, and what Stella and I eat for breakfast and lunch. I tried (as best as I could) to keep track of our meals that week. But it's not the best example because we had a lot of extra stuff going on that week. I went grocery shopping that week on Thursday. I tracked out meals Friday–Tuesday.

  • Breakfast: Tim just drinks coffee, Stella had yogurt and toast, I ate an English Muffin with butter
  • Lunch: Tim took leftover pizza from our dinner out the night before, Stella ate a PB&J, half of a pear, and we split a small bag of Doritos, I ate the Doritos, and salad with leftover steak cut up on it
  • Dinner: Stella and I went to a Premier Jewelry Party so we ate there, Tim made mac and cheese for himself and ate some chips
  • Breakfast: We all had pancakes made from scratch
  • Lunch: We attended the March For Babies walk in Caledonia and they provided lunch
  • Dinner: We all ate homemade burgers and fries
  • Breakfast: Tim and I had English Muffins, and Stella had leftover pancakes
  • Lunch: Stella and I had mac and cheese and some fruit, Tim just ate popcorn
  • Dinner: We had pizza with my family to celebrate Alexis' graduation
  • Breakfast: Tim drank his coffee, I had a banana, Stella ate pancakes
  • Lunch: We all ate leftover pizza that my mom had sent home with us
  • Dinner: Beef enchiladas and pineapple for all of us
  • Breakfast: Tim drank his coffee, Stella and I had ham and cheese omelets
  • Lunch: Tim took the leftover enchiladas, Stella are some pineapple, pear and smoked sausage, I ate a ham sandwich with chips and pickles
  • Dinner: Roasted chicken thighs with garlic parmesan pasta

Thursday, May 16, 2013


G baby is getting so big. He amazes me everyday. Every time I get frustrated or feel like he is at a plateau, he does something new.

We are currently working on Gat to pivot around on his tummy without rolling over. Along with that we are have started to work on standing more. For standing and sitting on his own he has to wear his new ankle supports (sorry for no picture but they are so cute!). He most will not crawl for awhile so instead of holding him back we are going to start working on standing and walking more (we being his therapist and Jess and myself). His physical therapist is bringing a walker for him to try out at home. Obviously he won't be walking right away.

The pictures are of him in his stander. It has wheels on it and he really enjoyed being wheeled around on the sidewalk the other day. It takes a lot of work for him to stand up in it and every minute he is in there, it makes me so proud:) His legs/hips are just not strong enough or flexible enough to do it on his own.

He is starting to say a lot of different things and trying to imitate what we are saying more. His favorite is UH OH. It is so cute and he knows that people smile/laugh when he says, he eats that right up. Just in the last couple days he has been "spitting" with his tongue. He thinks that is great. Jess and I took Gat with us tonight and he was trying to bob his head like me and was smiling away. It was so cute and first like that make me smile the most. I love seeing him interact with us more. It is like, WHEW he does know what is going on.

On the medical side of things Gat is doing fairly well. He is not gaining much weight and we have increased his calorie intake by 15%. Still haven't see major weight gains, but at least it is not a loss! In February and March he had lost 2 pounds. Weight loss is no good folks! But, he is getting way taller, which is exciting. I am pretty sure the only thing not growing is his head and feet.

The last helmet check up we went to his head had not grown at all. Which is kind of annoying because we are putting this helmet on him to shape new growth. With no growth equals no change in shape. Oh well, he is still cuter than cute. Wait until you see pics of the hair underneath it all;)

His feet are still a size 2/3, they have not grown at all since his birthday.

I hope you are all doing well and if you are curious about anything feel free to ask!

Monday, May 13, 2013

One Thing

Before we had kids there were things we said we would never do or say once we were moms. But of course, we were naive. Please tell us we're not alone here?!

Jamie: The one thing I never thought I would do as a mom, but do ALL OF THE TIME, is let Love Bean run around with a dirty face. I would see kids with food, or dried snot on their noses and think. "really, how hard is it to just quickly wipe that up?" But, you know what, sometimes food on the face is the least of your worries. Especially when your kid is as messy of an eater as Love Bean. By the time I'm done cleaning up the mess on the table and floor, she's long gone, playing with her babies. Fortunately, for the most part, I manage to keep it clean while we're in public. But if you showed up at my house unannounced at 3pm, chances are her lunch is still all over her face.

Mallorie: I always said I would never say, "Because I am the MOM!". But folks, I do it. Almost daily. Sometimes the questions get a little daunting during the day. Plus I do not like when my five year old says why can you do that but I can't. Well, simple answer I am the mom and when you are older you can do that. Sometimes I dumb it down even more and just say "Because!". I know I cannot be alone in this!

Friday, May 10, 2013

It's not that I don't like you....

Okay don't be mad its not that I don't like you or think none of you are highly creative but..... I didn't listen to any of ya"ll. I did the opposite of why all of you suggested for the frame and chose the Instagram collage. Il let you all off the hook for not suggesting it due to the crappy picture I provided... Because I'd have to say it turned out so good!!! I chose this for a number of logical reasons

1. It was the cheapest of the 4
2. I had the pictures I was doing nothing with
3. I thought it would highlight the frame more.

I am so happy with how it turned out! Ill admit though a combo of my being lazy and being horrible at math, I just took the frame up to heirlooms gallery in Lake O and had them do it for a small fee of 25 dollars :) let me know what ya think!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Thoughts About Pregnancy #2

It's been a few weeks since my last Angry Bean update. I have a lot of random thoughts to share, please forgive the lack of flow this post is going to have. I haven't gotten any better at selfies, this one I took with my laptop, so it's a little better. I guess I could have Tim take the pics, but I just don't really like taking belly pics. It's awkward.

32 weeks - only 8 weeks to go!
I've heard a common fear when you have your second child is—you won't love them as much as you love your first—I'm not worried about that. I have no doubt that I will love Angry Bean, as much as I love Love Bean. Even if their nicknames make the opposite sound true ;)

My biggest fear, is that I won't be able to give them both enough attention. Especially since I'm planning on breast feeding again, and would like to do so for at least 6 months. Nursing Love Bean seemed to take up so much of my day, and you can't really do anything else while nursing, so it makes me a little nervous. Tips please?!

I think my body is already preparing me for sleep deprived nights. I've been waking up a lot of nights around 2:30am and am wide awake. Love Bean was such a good sleeper. I'm crossing my fingers that Angry Bean will be too, but I won't be let down if (s)he isn't, because I know that's not typical. Did you know that 70% of babies don't sleep through the night (6 to 8 hours) until 9 months?

I'm not nearly as worried about having things ready as I was with Love Bean. My mindset lately has been—Eh...I have my boobs, that's all the baby will really need for the first few months. I should probably wash some receiving blankets and onesies though.

I can feel Angry Bean move way more than I ever felt Love Bean. My doctor said this could be for one or two reasons. 1.) I know what it feels like, so I started to notice it sooner. 2.) This time my placenta is at the back of my uterus, which typically makes movement more noticeable. It could have been in the front last time around, adding a little extra padding, and making movements less noticeable.

We have pretty much settled on either Hank or Edison for a boy. Tim is still leaning towards Hank, but I think he's coming around to Edison. And Rosalie is set in stone for a girl. If you ask Stella, she wants a baby Eddie.

The infant carseat we have is mostly black, but it does have dark purple piping, and some tan butterflies on it. Is it bad that I plan on using it even if we have a boy? Maybe I'll try dying it all black or buy a cover for it.

The other day, my sisters forced me to list things I needed to get before Angry Bean's arrival. It was more than I thought, maybe I should get on it.

I feel like I'm the same size as I was the day I delivered Love Bean, so I'm a little nervous to see how much I balloon over the next 8 weeks.

When Love Bean was born, I designed birth announcements but I never sent them out. This time around I want to actually get some in the mail.

I have a second ultrasound tomorrow. My first one showed I had low lying placenta, which I guess is pretty common in early pregnancy. This ultrasound is just to make sure that's it moved up to where it's suppose to be. If it hasn't, you'll surely hear more about it because it will change my entire birth plan. My current birth plan? Not having a plan...

I've started getting heart burn when I lay down at night. I had the same thing while pregnant with Love Bean. And just like they say, she was born with lots of hair, so maybe Angry Bean will be too.

Love Bean is a spitting image of her daddy. It'll be fun to see if Angry Bean has the same features, or if (s)he will look more like me.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Restaurants and Kids

Jess and I want our kids to behave in public. I want them to sit in a restaurant and have it not be stressful at all (well as much as that can happen with 3 kids). Not too much to ask am I right?

Here is what I am doing to make that happen. For the most part it works but I have for sure had sometimes where I was like, BAD IDEA.

I take our kids out to eat at quick restaurants. Not fancy places at all just casual dining type places. Sometimes it is just to McDonalds (which i dislike more than you know) and other weeks it is to our favorite, Noodles & Company.

I am careful about what time of the day we go and also am very cautious of nap schedules too. I do not like to go at "rush hour" and sit down and eat. I take them by myself because I am a little more laid back when it comes to being in public with the kids. It is probably because I do it way more. I haul them wherever unless it is going to be a complete drag for them or not let me be successful with what I need to do. (some doctor appointments are better without extras). So when it comes to sitting down at Noodles & Co I can generally keep my temper and show patience, I mean I want to eat too!

Bathroom before you even sit down. On average we get up and go the bathroom about 2 times when we go. And sometimes it is because Rae sees someone she just keeps wanting to walk by and stare at. (yes it was 2 teenage boys she was crushin' on) So, drop your coats and go the bathroom before you order. I make all kids go and try, I usually change Gat too. It's happened a couple times where I didn't make Jo go and 5 minutes after we get our food she has gotta go. Or I didn't change Gat and he starts fussing mid meal.

Somedays are kids are GREAT and others it is more trying. Right now our biggest struggle is Gat. He HATES sitting in those high chairs, he is so uncomfortable. Once I went out to lunch with a couple of friends and one of them, Lindz, brought her bumbo for her little girl. I am thinking maybe that would help if I did that for Gat. Although, places that don't have booths that would be trickier. (I probably would get a lot looks if I just plopped him in the bumbo on a chair.

What do you do to make an outing successful? Any tips for me!?

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Do You Fight in Front of Your Kids?

Jess and I don't have a lot of screaming matches. But we definitely bicker a lot. We tend to do it in front of the kids. I don't let things go without talking them out, for the most part. I remember my parents fights, which consisted of mom ignoring dad. I want to show the kids how to work through things or out problems instead of ignoring the problem all together. (I am not sure how it was behind the scenes or anything but that is how I remember it.) But, we never saw how they resolved the problem. I want to show the kids that you can argue with someone and work through it then be cordial and the whole house does not have to be on edge for rest of the day.

I think if it is an issue of parenting then we tend to keep it away from the kids. I will bite my tongue until we are in a different room from them. I believe in keeping a united front for the kids. A lot of these  are more conversations than fighting. If Jess and I fight it is more me just upset about something little, that I have pushed aside. Which I personally have been trying to be better about. Honestly though, a lot of the bigger arguments aren't even about him. It is a lot about things happening around us.


Like Mal and Jesse, Tim and I and don't really get into a lot of screaming matches. Generally, we are the same page about important life changing decisions. That's not saying there haven't ever been any in the 8 years we've been together. I remember getting into one of those fights when Stella was a newborn. We didn't let her being there hold us back, after all she was a baby she wouldn't remember it anyway. But it did effect her that night. She got really upset, even after I had stopped crying, I had trouble getting her to calm down and go to sleep. Since then, if we need to hash something out that has the potential to get heated, we do it after she's gone to bed.

However we do bicker/get into little arguments quite a bit. I have no concerns about our kids seeing us bicker or argue. I think it's good for them to see that mom and dad don't always agree on things, but they still love each other. I also feel like Tim and I have a pretty healthy way of arguing. We don't be little each other, we listen to what each other has to say, and we generally verbally state our agreement/or agreement to disagree at the end of the conversation. I think these are all things that are important for our kids to see, so that they will learn there are respectful ways for people to argue.

Seems Mallorie and I handle fighting in front of our kids in much the same way. What are your thoughts on the subject?

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

April Love List

Here's a few things we loved about April.

Alexis:Potty training success for Roo, purchase and redo to come of that rad chair (grad gift!), nice weather to play outside, graduation of course!

Jamie: Love Bean's new floppy hat, the wedding of one of my oldest friends, family fun day at Tangle Town and the March for Babies walk

Mallorie: The girls got to wear their new Easter outfits, nice long walks outside, date night was a wedding, and the March for Babies walk:)

May Printable

CLICK HERE to download this month's free printable.

Our other printables: