Monday, December 31, 2012

Planks, Puke and Paint

We visited my sister and her family over the weekend. For the most part it was a great trip! First the good: planks! Lucas held captive his audience of cousins by showing off his new skills of sitting up, semi-crawling, and planking! He gets up on his hands and feet and stretches out his body like he's going to propel himself forward. He face-plants most of the time, but looks so cute doing it!

Now for the not so good: During our car ride up there Ryan said he had an "owie" and started whimpering a little bit. Call it Mommy intuition or something else, but I immediately knew he was going to throw up. I asked him if his tummy hurt and then he answered my question by throwing up. Uggg. I was afraid he had caught the stomach flu that is going around, but after cleaning  him off and giving him crackers, we determined he was just carsick. Any tips for helping carsick kids? This happened a couple months ago and I really don't want it to become a regular occurrence.

But Ryan wasn't done making messes. The next day, about an hour before we were going to leave my sister's house to come home, Ryan got into a can of dark green paint and dumped it on my sister's nice light carpeting. I had been out to lunch with my sister and we had left the men in charge of the 7 kids. We arrived home to find a naked Ryan crying in the shower and Adam and my nephew Josh frantically cleaning the carpet.  Thankfully they got most of the stain out and it's funny to think about now, but I felt so bad for my sister and her new house!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas Catchup

Christmas 2012 was really wonderful here at the Nullmeyer household. We were truly blessed with quality time with family, generous gifts, and sweet memories. Ryan was really excited this year to open presents from Santa (a new word he started saying this week!). He was so excited that he couldn't help himself from ripping open a few of our presents as well.
 Lucas preferred to chew on his wrapped presents.

 We spent a lazy day at home with Adam's Mom that included stockings, breakfast........
 and putting together a new tool bench in our underwear.
Later in the day we went to my parents' house and enjoyed a prime rib dinner with them. Adam is on vacation until the new year, so we are enjoying lots of time with Daddy. Today we took down our (dead) Christmas tree and BBQ'd dinner on Adam's brand new BBQ. (That I helped him build !)
I am so excited to be blogging on my brand new laptop. It is amazing to have a computer that actually works! Unfortunately, my camera stopped working on Christmas morning. So although I can blog and upload pictures now, I can't actually take pictures with my camera! One of these days technology will be my friend.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Giving Thanks During The Never Ending Virus

We've all been sick since last week and it feels like we're never going to get better! This virus is very slow moving and it's taking a lot longer to bounce back than usual. It started with Ryan and then spread to the rest of us.

Ryan is almost symptom-free at this point, with the exception of some congestion and a cough. But oh boy, is he cranky! I can tell he's still not feeling well because he wants me to hold him a lot during the day and he has a major meltdown over every little small thing. Oh wait, is that just what 2.5 year olds do?

Lucas is living up to the nickname Daddy gave him when he was born.....Pukus Mucus Lucas. Poor guy, that's such a terrible nickname! But unfortunately it's true....he has had major mucus spilling out of him since last Friday, and he has coughed/gagged so hard that he's thrown up.

I thought I had the easiest version of the cold until a few days ago. I got the sore throat, congestion and pinkeye, but then started feeling even worse a few days ago. I am now on inhalers for my cough, and Robitussin taken at night is thankfully helping a little bit. But now my glands are so swollen I can barely swallow food.

Adam had all the same symptoms as me, except for the pinkeye. But guess what happened in the middle of last night for him? Green eye discharge! Seriously, it feels like the virus that just keeps giving

As difficult as it is to be sick while taking care of sick kids, I do know how blessed I am. I read recently that the feeling of joy begins with the act of thanksgiving, no matter the circumstances. There are so many things to give thanks to God for. No ER trip for this sickness, the help of my Mom who got sick herself from being around us, Adam is off from work for the next 10 days, generally healthy kids, and the fact that we should be better by Christmas! We have so much to be thankful for.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Weighty Wednesday: Cold Loss

I feel like I should start this post by saying that I'm eating a mug of ice cream as I type. Bryer's Vanilla with some maple syrup drizzled on top. Yum.

But you know what? I deserve it. We've had a week of sickness around here, so my food intake hasn't been quite as high as usual. I guess that's why I lost a little over a pound this week. Nothing like a good cold to help lose weight.

Week 25
Lbs Lost So Far: 22
Lbs Left to Lose: 3 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Moving Along

My computer no longer allows me to view or upload photos, so you'll just have to squint really hard and imagine a cute picture right about here. It's one of Lucas, sitting up all by himself. Do you have the image in your head? Ok, keep reading.

When Lucas turned 6 months old, he was rolling over really well but that was about it in terms of gross motor skills. But then all of a sudden, in the span of one week, Lucas has started doing the following:

~Scooting (backwards and forwards)
~Getting up on hands and knees and rocking back and forth
~Sitting up for longer periods of time by himself
~Once pulled himself up into a standing position from sitting on a chair

Whoa whoa whoa! Slow down there little guy.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Sleep Training

I never knew you had to teach a baby how to sleep. I suppose there are some babies out there who just instinctually know how to fall asleep and stay asleep for a decent amount of time. My babies do not fall into that category.

So when I began to notice that Lucas was developing the same habits as Ryan did at this age (wouldn't fall asleep unless nursed/rocked/bounced for hours on end and then would immediately wake up if moved, oh and barely napped during the day.....and used me as a human pacifier off and on all night) I know I needed to do some sleep training. In preparation I read "The Baby Whisperer Solves All Your Sleep Problems" and "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child".

I decided to use the Cry It Out method with Lucas. I considered doing the more gentle method of going in to soothe after 1 minute, then after being away 2 minutes, then 3, etc. But I had tried this once and it only seemed to make things worse.

So last week I went full speed ahead with Cry It Out, starting with his morning nap around 9am. To be honest, I expected it to go horribly. Lucas cried for 56 minutes. Another 4 minutes and I probably would have gone into his room. He then napped for 30 minutes. That afternoon I put him down and he cried for 14 minutes, followed by a 30 minute nap. This gave me hope!  The following night I tried it for bedtime. I nursed Lucas in the rocking chair and then put him down, walked away, and shut the door. He cried for 59 minutes. It was so hard to listen to! But I was shocked that he actually fell asleep, since that never really happened for Ryan. I expected the crying to last at least two hours. After crying for the 59 minutes, Lucas slept for 6 hours in his crib. I was absolutely in shock. The longest he has slept consecutively since birth was about 4 or 5 hours in bed with me. Could this really work?

On night number 2 Lucas cried for 40 minutes. When he woke up only 45 minutes later I anxiously watched him on the monitor to see what would happened. He fussed around for a minute and then fell back to sleep. I'm pretty sure I could hear angels rejoicing with me at this point. A child of mine was capable of putting himself to sleep? Lucas woke up a few more times that evening but slept in his crib for 6 hours before I went in and got him.

Sunday night was the best so far. 5 minutes of crying followed by a 7 hour stretch of sleep. Talk about huge improvement over such a short period of time!

And last night, when Ryan was up puking and I really really needed Lucas to stay in his crib, guess what he did for the first time? Spent the entire night in his crib! He slept from 8pm until 3am. I went in and nursed him and put him back in his crib. He then slept until 7:30am! Praise God.

I know there will be setbacks, but I am hopeful that Lucas is learning good sleep habits now and will be a better sleeper than his brother.

***This blog post was made possible by Lucas' 1 hour and 45 minute morning nap in his crib. Can I get an Amen?***

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Weighty Wednesday: Over It

I am so tired of this whole weight loss thing. To be honest, I haven't been putting much effort into eating healthier. I've been eating dessert every day because, well....yummy food is everywhere this time of year! I guess it doesn't help that I like to bake homemade treats and then consume them. (Homemade peppermint bark, anyone?)

Week 24
Lbs Lost So Far: 21
Lbs Left to Lose: 4

Goals: I lost one pound over the past two weeks, which means only two pounds lost this past month. My goal is to lose 1 pound per week for the next month until I reach my goal.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Swing Twins

Same outfit and everything! Can you tell who is who?

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Cutie Shoes

Ryan got his first pair of rain boots last week and he is officially obsessed with them.

He wakes up and asks me where his new shoes are.

"New shoes Mommy?", asked with a tilt of his head.

He stomps in puddles with them. He kicks his feet back and forth in them underneath the table while eating lunch. He wears them to the park. But then grudgingly lets me swap them for his regular shoes when he realizes he can't run and climb too well in his boots.

It's incredibly cute.

Speaking of shoes, Ryan said something funny the other day. We were at the grocery store. Ryan had kicked off his shoes, as he always does when at the store. Only this time I failed to notice. Partway through the store an employee came up to me holding Ryan's shoes. It seems a certain little toddler had left his shoes in the produce department. I thanked the man and told Ryan to stop kicking off his shoes.

He looked at me with his serious little face and said "People take my shoes".

Man I love that kid.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Lucas: 6 Months

Dear Lucas, you are half a year old!
This past month for you was all about grabbing at things and putting them in your mouth. You want to touch and taste everything single thing. Probably because you got your first tooth this month! One of your bottom front teeth sprouted through, and the one next to it will likely cut through soon.
And speaking of teeth, I've finally figured out why your tongue is constantly hanging out of your mouth. It's because you're feeling your new tooth! Seriously, your tongue is never inside your mouth.
You cried a lot less this month. As long as you are well-rested and being held a lot by Mommy, you are a very happy little boy. You willingly smile at anyone and love when we play games with you like peek-a-boo, tickling, and making funny faces in the mirror. But if you're tired? Oh man, you sure can cry.
I'm trying something new this week in order to teach you some good sleeping habits. I will blog about it in a separate post. Prior to this week you were still sleeping in bed with me for most of the night, waking up every couple hours to nurse. But I am hopeful this will soon change!
You continued to try new foods this month, including pears, squash, sweet potatoes, oatmeal, peaches and beef. You enjoy eating solid foods, although you aren't a huge fan of sitting in the high chair yet. You do love eating bananas inside of a mesh feeder. It's messy but really fun for you! I still nurse you around 5 times per day and I really cherish these times with you because I know you will soon be a big boy eating meals at the table with your brother.
You are growing up so fast. I know it sounds cliche, but the time really is flying by with you. It seems like you were just born, but now here you are, rolling all over the place, weighing over 16 and a half pounds, and laughing at your big brother's antics. It seems like any day now you will stand up and take off running after Ryan.
 Slow down sweet baby Lucas!

Love, Mommy

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

6-Month Dr. Visit

Lucas turned 6 months yesterday. I haven't posted my usual update about him because I can't upload pictures to my "safe-mode" computer. I bet you can all guess what I'd like for Christmas! I also haven't been able to post because, well, things are a little nuts around here in the evenings and I no longer have a spare minute to myself. That will hopefully change soon. More on that later.

So Lucas had his check-up yesterday and all was well with him. He was all smiles for the doctor and nurses. Here are his 6-month growth stats:

Weight: 16 lbs, 11 oz (35%)
Height: 26.5 inches (45%)
Head: 17.25 inches (63%)

Ryan's growth stats at 6 months of age were exactly the same, with the exception of his weight being 1 oz less. Isn't that crazy how similar they are? Lucas' growth has definitely slowed down a bit, even though he's eating solid foods now. I've been giving him solids once or twice a day, but now that he's 6 months old I'm going to increase it to about 3 times per day, with the addition of meats and combined foods. This morning he had peach rice pudding for breakfast!

Lucas got 3 vaccinations as well as a flu shot yesterday. He cried briefly and then seemed fine all day (except for the fact that he only napped 20 minutes yesterday!). But then last night he was fussy and really warm. Poor little baby, I hate those shots!

I talked to the Dr. in length about Lucas' poor sleeping habits and how they are alarmingly similar to Ryan's at this age. We're going to start letting him cry himself to sleep later this week. I am both excited about it and dreading it at the same time. I will update on our progress next week.