Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Going to School...

At the bus stop

Carter sees the bus coming

Getting on the bus

Carter's First Day of School

All week we've been gearing up for this morning, Carter's first day of kindergarten. I had a parents' meeting on Monday night, then Carter got to meet his teacher and see his room yesterday afternoon. He seemed apprehensive, but he's more like that when I'm around. His teacher, Mrs. Lund, completely understood -- one of her daughters is the same way! We took his supplies in as well, and he picked a desk.

I had been debating whether to take him the first day or put him on the bus. After getting advice from a friend and former K/1st grade teacher, I decided to have him ride the bus. Carter is, after all, a very routine-oriented kid and I do think that starting him off this way will be the best for him and his teacher. He'll ride the bus home this afternoon too. I talked with him about bus safety, made him learn his bus number, and told him to be sure to get off the bus at his stop (which is down the road a bit, at a cross-street). He was actually the only one there this morning, but I suspect there will be more kids next week, if not tomorrow.

So now it's the big day... I set my alarm last night (no, I'm not a morning person!). I actually got to sleep after 2am so I was not looking forward to waking up earlier. And no, 7:30am is not early to most people, but it is to me! I had Carter's clothes pulled out and in the living room so we wouldn't disturb Lauren. Carter actually got up around 7:40 on his own, which I was thankful for. Sometimes he's a grump if you have to wake him up! I got him breakfast and went over his class schedule for the day, and also told him about raising his hand and making sure he asks to go to the bathroom. He seemed more excited today and fine about riding the bus.

We did have a few setbacks... The button on his shorts was hanging on by a thread and I couldn't find my needle. So I had to get him another pair to wear. No biggie. Then both Lauren and Hayden were awake, so I had to get them ready to walk down to the bus stop, which just took more time. We ended up rushing out the door to get down there to wait for the bus. I only got a few pictures, but will take some more when he gets off the bus this afternoon.

I hope he has a great first day of school. I have to admit that I was a little teary-eyed after he got on the bus. It just hit me yesterday that he's actually going to be gone at school all day! I think he'll do great and have a fun year of kindergarten. :)

Friday, August 7, 2009


I went to Target tonight to pick up a few things we needed (and a few we didn't!). One of these things happened to be cat litter. After the cashier swiped it across the scanner and handed it to me, she said, "Must be cat litter day." I asked her if a lot of people were buying it, and she told me about a couple that bought six cartons of it. Want to know why? They have 82 cats. Seriously? Who has 82 cats?!?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Big Boy!

I went to get Hayden up from his nap and found him SITTING in his crib! He's been sitting on his own for a couple months, but this is the first time he sat himself up!

Then he even tried to pull himself up. Look at his feet under him! How exciting!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Life Changes

I completed my first run in over a year tonight. It was just over a mile (1.06, to be exact), and it wasn't the fastest run. Or even close to my fastest mile. But it was still a mile run, with very little walking (just up one big hill). My legs felt super heavy and I really had to work on my breathing, but it has to get easier from here. The hardest part is getting back out there!

This is all a part of changes I want to make in my life. Having two kids 17.5 months apart was not easy on my body (or nice to it!). I've actually been either pregnant or nursing for almost three years!! Now I need to do something about it. I started doing my power core yoga a couple weeks ago and just need to make it a regular thing. Add in the running, eating healthier, and cutting back on pop and I'll have a good thing going. I need help... and motivation... and encouragement. I can do this!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

The End of a Beginning

Yesterday was Carter's last day of preschool. Most parents get a little teary-eyed when it comes to sending their kids to school, but I think the last day was harder than the first day! Carter was so excited to go to school, and it was such a great experience. I'll admit that it was a little different at first, since I wasn't used to him being out of the house much without me. It was SO quiet too, since Hayden wasn't born until a few months in! Anyway... to me, the last day of preschool marked the end of a beginning. It made me realize that Carter is getting older -- he just finished preschool! He's already looking forward to starting kindergarten in August, and I'm excited to spend more time with him this summer. I know he'll miss school, his teacher, and his friends, and it will take us both a little time to stop that routine. Wow... Am I really the mom of an almost kindergartner?

Friday, May 8, 2009

Today's the Day...

Today is a day always filled with mixed emotions. Three years ago today, I went to the doctor for my first (10-wk) prenatal appointment only to find out that the baby's heartbeat never started (died at 7 gestational weeks, my body had no clue). Two years ago today I went for a weekly checkup (38-wks), and was told they were going to induce my labor in two days. (They originally thought Lauren only had two vessels instead of the normal three in her umbilical cord, and there is no reason to go past 38.5 weeks. Turns out, she did have the three vessels.) Two days later, and no need to induce, Lauren was born! Sometimes good things happen to lessen the pain of the bad ones. I thank God for those good things!

Busy, Busy, Busy!

Wow, it's been a long time since I've posted! There has been A LOT going on, which is mostly the reason for no posts. ;) I've had some ramblings going through my mind, just not the time to sit down and type them out! I promise an update soon, probably multiple updates!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Miss Emmy Lou

Today would have been her 9th birthday. Oh, we miss you, Emmy!!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Snow!!

You know we've gotten a lot of snow when IU cancels classes. That's right... the university cancelled classes through noon today! I had to reschedule Hayden's dr appt this morning, as the dr's office only kept one of their locations opened in town. Since it was across town instead of five minutes away, I figured I'd be safer (esp after three nurses called three different times since 7:30am) just to reschedule for next Tues. Maybe we'll just go play in the snow... Lauren already had fun yesterday afternoon!

(**An edit from earlier... IU is now closed ALL DAY!!!)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Hayden and Mommy

Wow, so hard to believe that Hayden is almost 2 months old already! It's a little late, but he had a great 2-week checkup (on 12/8). He was 21 5/8" long (75%) and 9 lbs 8 oz (75%) -- only two ounces shy of birth weight! The doctor was very pleased and didn't need to do the jaundice check.

Hayden adjusted quite well to life outside the womb. He was immediately sleeping 4-5 hour stretches at night and has been breastfeeding wonderfully (although he recently started what I call "fussy nursing", so let's hope we can get that figured out soon). He has now started sleeping anywhere from 5-7.5 hours at night, then waking to eat and sleeping for another 2-3 hours. Just this week I've noticed more of a pattern, with him sleeping a large chunk of the morning and then again late afternoon. Let's hope it continues! He's also started having more breaks in between his nursing. He used to nurse every 30-45 minutes after taking a long nap -- and would nurse a good 4-6 times before sleeping again. Let me tell you... that was not easy on me! I still nurse him on demand, but am going to start getting him on a schedule very soon (and he seems to be helping me!). I'm also working on getting him to go to sleep a little sooner at night (it's currently around 12:30am), and going to sleep on his own more. He has done it a few times, I just want to make it that way permanently!

Hayden has been such a blessing and wonderful addition to our family. He is such a happy little guy, and is already talking, cooing, laughing, and grinning like crazy! The adjustment to three kids hasn't been as tough as I imagined, but that's not to say it isn't hard. Just getting out the door -- or rather getting READY to leave the house -- is the hardest thing. Now that Hayden isn't so newborn, it is easier for me to get things done. One of the toughest things for me is not having everything picked up or having to put things off for a bit. But, I'll take spending time with my new little guy. :)

As for me, I had my six-week postpartum check two weeks ago. Everything is back to normal and I was cleared by the doctor for all activity. He told me I had this having-baby-thing down! :) Now I just need to start back into my yoga and running. I also need to start better watching what I eat. With nursing I get SOOO hungry that it's hard to eat great every single time. We do eat mostly at home (I'm starting to stock up on freezer meals and am meal-planning better) and the kids and I try to snack healthy most the time. But it's tough when 2-3 hours after eating dinner I'm ready for another whole meal! I only gained 25 pounds this pregnancy, and have another 8 to lose for pre-prego weight. Of course, I was in the process of losing weight when I got pregnant, so there's really much more to go! At least I'm wearing a smaller size jeans now than I was last year! Great motivation to keep losing. :)

Hopefully I can keep updating about Hayden. It's not often I get to sit, think, and write! :)

Sunday, January 4, 2009

8 (Un)Healthy Foods

Because my mom is a dietitian and I generally like to eat healthy, I take an interest in learning about food. I recently read this article and wanted to post it. One of my pet peeves when it comes to eating is dieting. I don't believe in diets -- I believe in eating healthy and everything in moderation. A main element of diets is limiting, and if you cut out or limit something you're bound to fail. I especially dislike when everything is fat free or low fat -- you do need fat in your diet, and there's healthy ways to do it. Another thing is diet soda... Just read the article, which was written by a registered dietitian.

Think these 8 foods are healthy? Wrong!

Even if you haven't bought full-fat mayo or sugary soda since blue eye shadow was in style (the first time), you may be getting duped into less-than-stellar food choices at the supermarket. The culprit? The "health halo." "From a distance, some foods seem like healthful choices because of the way they're packaged or labeled," says Janel Ovrut, MS, RD, a Boston-based dietitian. "But just because a product's marketing gives it an aura of health doesn't necessarily mean it's good for you." Here, eight notorious health food impostors, plus smarter swaps that up the nutritional ante and still give you the flavor you crave.

Baked potato chips
Yes, they're lower in fat. But they're still high in calories and low in nutrients, with little fiber to fill you up.

Smarter sub: Popcorn. You'll get the salt and crunch of chips plus fiber, and around 65 percent fewer calories per cup. Look for oil-free microwave popcorn or brands that are air-popped or popped in healthful oils such as olive or canola.

Health bonus: Heart-healthy whole grains. Adults who eat popcorn take in as much as 2 1/2 times more whole grains than people who do not, according to a recent study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

Try: Good Health HalfNaked pre-popped popcorn, made with olive oil. One serving (4 cups) has 120 calories, 0 g sat fat, 4 g fiber.

Gummy fruit snacks
Although these products may contain some juice, they're usually nothing more than candy infused with vitamins. They also contain high fructose corn syrup, which is linked with obesity, and heart-unhealthy partially hydrogenated oils.

Smarter sub: Fresh or dried fruit. Both are packed with filling fiber, which you'll miss if you opt for gummy snacks.

Health bonus: Cancer-fighting antioxidants. Real fruit is loaded with immune-boosting nutrients that fruit-flavored snacks could never mimic. A recent Greek study found that women who ate the most fruits and veggies were the least likely to develop any type of cancer.

Try: Peeled Snacks Fruit Picks dried fruit ( One serving (one bag) of Go-Mango-Man-Go has 120 calories, 0 g sat fat, 2 g fiber.

Light ice cream
Light ice cream can have fewer calories than regular, but there's no guarantee. Take Häagen-Dazs Dulce de Leche light ice cream: With 220 calories per 1/2 cup serving, it's still higher in calories than the average full-fat ice cream, which has around 140 calories per serving. What's more, some light ice creams can lack the rich taste you crave, so you're less satisfied and may be inclined to eat more than one serving.

Smarter sub: Dairy-free ice cream. Soy and coconut milk ice creams may save you a few calories, and they have a creamy, satisfying texture.

Health bonus: Digestion-friendly fiber. Some dairy-free ice creams are made with chicory root, a natural source of inulin, a prebiotic fiber that can increase healthy bacteria in the gut and help the body absorb calcium and iron.

Try: Turtle Mountain Purely Decadent, made with coconut milk. One serving (1/2 cup) of vanilla has 150 calories, 7 g sat fat, and 6 g fiber. (Studies show that the saturated fat in coconut may not raise cholesterol like the saturated fat in butter and meat.)

Diet soda
In a 2008 study, researchers linked drinking just one diet soda a day with metabolic syndrome — the collection of symptoms including belly fat that puts you at high risk of heart disease. Researchers aren't sure if it's an ingredient in diet soda or the drinkers' eating habits that caused the association.

Smarter sub: Flavored seltzer water. It has zero calories and is free of artificial sweeteners but provides fizz and flavor. Beware of clear sparkling beverages that look like seltzer yet contain artificial sweeteners — they're no better than diet soda. Or try a sparkling juice; we recommend watering it down with seltzer to stretch your calories even further.

Health bonus: Hydration (without chemicals). Water is essential for nearly every body process.

Try: Your supermarket's low-cost seltzer brand. The taste is the same as the bigger name brands.

'Calorie-free' spray margarine
Even though some spray margarines claim to be "calorie-free," labeling laws allow products with fewer than 5 calories per serving to claim to have zero calories. So, while one spritz may be inconsequential, the whole bottle could have as much as 900 calories.

Smarter sub: Spray-it-yourself olive oil. In this case, a bit of real fat is more healthful and flavorful — and within a reasonable calorie range if you watch your portions. Investing in an olive oil mister ensures you don't put on too much.

Health bonus: Decreased inflammation throughout the body, which helps your heart and lowers cancer risk, thanks to monounsaturated fatty acids.

Try: Misto olive oil sprayer. Find one at any kitchen store for around $10.

Nonfat salad dressing
Fat-free salad dressings are often packed with sugar — so your dressing may be loaded with calories. Ironically, a salad without fat is not living up to its potential. "You need a little fat to absorb vitamins A, D, E, and K and other nutrients," says Katherine Tallmadge, RD, spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.

Smarter sub: Oil-based salad dressings. You'll get good-for-you fats instead of the saturated fat found in some creamy dressings. Look for ingredients like olive oil, vinegar, and herbs.

Health bonus: Vision protection. As many as five times more carotenoids — antioxidants that are essential for eye-sight — are absorbed when salads are consumed with fat rather than with no fat.

Try: Newman's Own Olive Oil & Vinegar Dressing. Two tablespoons have 150 calories, 2.5 g sat fat, 0 g fiber.

Low-fat cookies
Do you remember the SnackWell's craze? Low-fat cookies are still popular, and many dieters think they can indulge guilt free. The problem is that most of these snacks are made with extra sugar, which means they often have just as many calories as the full-fat version, if not more.

Smarter sub: Oatmeal cookies. These are a great way to indulge a cookie craving while also getting whole grains. Not all are created equal, though: Skip those made with high fructose corn syrup, white flour, and butter in favor of varieties made with honey or cane juice, whole wheat flour, and oil.

Health bonus: Lower cholesterol. The fiber found in oatmeal keeps your body from absorbing bad cholesterol.

Try: Kashi TLC Cookies. One cookie has 130 calories, 1.5 g sat fat, 4 g fiber.

100-calorie snack packs
You might want to skip these if you're trying to lose weight. A recent study showed that people may eat more food and calories if the portions are presented in small sizes and packages. With smaller serving sizes, study participants didn't feel the need to regulate their intake, so they ate more than one portion before feeling satisfied.

Smarter sub: A small serving of almonds. Their healthy monounsaturated fat, fiber, and protein will tide you over until your next meal.

Health bonus: Stronger bones. Almonds are an excellent source of bone-building magnesium, as well as the immune-boosting antioxidant vitamin E.

Try: Blue Diamond Natural Oven Roasted Almonds. A 1 oz serving has 160 calories, 1 g sat fat, 3 g fiber.

By Nicole Ferring, MS, RD for Prevention; found at

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