Kate and Colleen have begun the struggle of sharing toys…oh, what fun. ūüôā The other day, Kate was saying (yelling?) to Colleen: ‚ÄúYou can‚Äôt play with this! It‚Äôs mine!‚ÄĚ I looked at Kate and gave her the look, and she repeated the same phrase in the same tone. I looked at her sternly and said, ‚ÄúKate! You CANNOT speak to your sister that way. Be NICE.‚ÄĚ She promptly looked at me, smiled, tilted her head, and said to Colleen in a ‚Äúsouthern nice‚ÄĚ voice, ‚ÄúYou can‚Äôt play with this. It‚Äôs mine.‚ÄĚ


Our friend, Steve, has been staying with us for a bit as he completes his cross country road trip (so jealous!). Kate‚Äôs formed quite an attachment to him, and he‚Äôs been so good to do puzzles, color, and play with her.¬† The other night we were leaving our house to head to my parents‚Äô house, and Kate asked, ‚ÄúWhere are Steve and Dacks?‚ÄĚ I told her they were staying at our house but coming to Grandma and Grandpa‚Äôs soon.¬† She immediately frowned, looked out the window, and said, ‚ÄúOh. I love them.‚ÄĚ


Kate finally has gotten the hang of Facetiming, thankfully. Well, for the most part. ūüėČ She loves to Facetime with Grammy, Gramps, and Aunt Katie. The other day she was Facetiming with Grammy and proceeded to put the phone on a little box lid (facing up). She then had a crazy Dance Party with Grammy, randomly popping her head back over by the phone. It was the funniest thing!


Yesterday we headed to the Doctor for Colleen’s 1 year checkup, and I had been telling Kate the past few days that we need to give extra love to Colleen when she gets her shots. When I laid Colleen down on the table to hold her arms down, Kate immediately scrambled and pulled up the stepping stool. She climbed up and grabbed her sister’s hand, then nuzzled her face down by Colleen’s. It was one of the sweetest moments as a parent, to see her truly comfort her sister.


Lately Kate has just been so sweet. At times so very ornery, but then she’ll turn around and say the sweetest thing to make up for it. I’m easily reminded why I love this age (even with its trials and tribulations) in these moments. She’ll randomly say to me, “You’re my friend, mommy.” It makes me want to cry!

Oh, how I love this little girl.




Colleen Erin: One Year!

As clich√© as it sounds, I really cannot believe Colleen is already 1! ¬†It goes by SO much faster the second time around…it’s unbelievable.

Weight & Height: Colleen weighs 19 lbs. 3 oz. (41%) and is 29″ in tall (43% – same as her sister at this age!). Her head measures 46 cm (79%).

Eating: ¬†This girl LOVES to eat! ¬†She also loves cow’s milk which we started introducing just before her birthday. ¬†I’ve only found a few foods she doesn’t like – bacon being one of them. ¬†(Neither of our kids like bacon….whatttt?!) ¬†In fact, she isn’t a huge meat eater at all, but she’ll usually eat chicken, ham, and turkey. ¬†She also isn’t super keen about foods with a lot of spices, which is hard because…that’s mostly what we eat. ūüôā ¬†She’s drinking about 16¬†oz. of milk each day, as well.

Sleeping (naps):  Two naps a day, each anywhere from 1-2 hours long.

Sleeping (at night): ¬†She was going to bed between 7:30 and 8 p.m., but here in the last month or so it’s moved up to 7:15/7:30 p.m. ¬†After a few attempts at sleep training and some regressions with teething, she FINALLY started sleeping through the night around 10 months! ¬†Praise the LORD. ¬†She’ll usually wake on her own between 6 and 6:30 a.m., but occasionally I have to wake her up in the mornings at 6:30 or so.

Clothing:  Mostly 12 month size, Size 3 diapers.

New this month: ¬†Saying “mama”…a lot! ¬†And I’m loving it. ¬†She started saying it maybe around 10 months old or so. ¬†She’ll also say “ba” and “da”. ¬†She was waving a month or two ago, but now you have to work for it. ūüėČ ¬†Still crawling (LIGHTENING fast!) and most recently has stood up on her own without holding onto anything. ¬†I’m so surprised we don’t have a walker yet, but it’s also…kind of nice. ¬†We’ll need to get her over to the convertible car seat soon (which means…buying her big sister the next one!), because her little feet are almost dangling over the edges.

Nicknames:  Co-lene, Coco

Colleen likes:

-Her blankie…just like her sister! ¬†They sleep with them the same way–with their faces nuzzled right into them. ¬†So sweet.

-Music–she LOVES to dance, and even if you sing a measure or two, she’ll likely start bouncing along right away. ¬†It’s just the cutest thing!

-Food/bottles.  All the time, any time!

-Mommy. ¬†I’m not gonna lie…I love when I pick her up at Michelle’s and she speed crawls over to me!

-But no one can compete with her favorite person in the world–KATE. ¬†She just giggles and laughs and adores her big sister.

Colleen dislikes:  

-Sitting in her high chair too long…which is often difficult to avoid, because it’ll often take her 30-45 minutes to finish a meal! ¬†She’ll let you know when she’s done, that’s for sure.

-Her teeth have been bothering her, but she’s usually good to go after some ibuprofen/tylenol.

-Getting into her car seat. ¬†THANKFULLY she’s usually okay once we get going, but we definitely have the back arch going on while trying to get her in.


Oh, Colleen….you have brought such immense joy to all of us. ¬†It’s truly hard to imagine our lives without you! ¬†You are such a curious, busy, easygoing, happy, FUN little girl. ¬†I cannot wait to see what the next year brings! ¬†We love you more than you’ll ever know.

Things I’ve Learned as a Mom

With some new friends and family members (!) in my life having babies, it’s really gotten me to think about the things I wish I would have known going into parenthood.

  1. Don’t compare your child to someone else’s. ¬†This is probably one of the hardest things about parenthood for me, and something I’m continually having to work on. ¬†I have a friend whose daughter is Kate’s age, and I remember comparing every.single.developmental milestone as they hit. ¬†Kate isn’t talking yet…what is wrong? ¬†Kate doesn’t know her numbers….holy shit, she’s never going to graduate high school! ¬†Seriously…it’s ridiculous. ¬†Kate was a late talker, and now she’s talking up a storm. ¬†It took her a full month to really walk full-time after her first steps, and soon after she was running (away-ha). ¬†Every child develops at a different pace, and if you compare them to everyone else….well, you will go crazy! ¬†So just don’t do it.
  2. Find a group of mom friends-ones with babies about the same age, if possible. ¬†Three of my girlfriends had their first babies within a year of me, and I can’t tell you how helpful it was to text and meet and “bounce” things off of them. ¬†Any mom friends are going to be incredibly important, but I found it so helpful to have all of our babies around the same stages. ¬†Everything that we’re going through is fresh in our minds, and we share big tips or ideas or frustrations all around! ¬†Also…play dates!
  3. If you delivery vaginally, prepare to not feel “normal”…for awhile. Especially if you have big babies. Or babies with big heads.¬†(Or both). ¬†I knew it would take awhile to recover after delivery, of course, but I wasn’t quite prepared to be 6¬†weeks out after delivering Kate and still uncomfortable. ¬†It wouldn’t say I was still in pain at that point, but at my 6 week check up, I was incredibly uncomfortable being examined. ¬†Thankfully, over the next few weeks, I started to feel more like myself again. ¬†And with Colleen, I felt completely normal after only 2 or 3 weeks!
  4. Get out of the house. ¬†Often!¬† And not just to Target. ¬†I think this was the hardest part for me during my maternity leave. ¬†With Kate, it was a. during the summer, and b. I “only” had one child-so it was 100 times easier to get out of the door. ¬†With Colleen, it was still cold and rainy that first month…and man alive. It’s obviously MUCH¬†harder to get a toddler and a newborn out the door. ¬†But for me, this was crucial and had a HUGE impact on my mood. ¬†I know some people are content at being in their homes for days, and that is completely okay–but my mood is drastically improved with a little fresh air. ¬†Plus, kids LOVE to be outside. ¬†And it’s good for them! (Also, nothing against Target–sometimes, that’s your only option! ¬†But seek out parks, go for walks, go visit a friend, even just go for a drive).
  5. ¬†You must rely on your partner–and do NOT be afraid to ask for help. ¬†I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I don’t know WHAT I would do without Brian. ¬†Now that I’m “older”, I’ve seen far too many of my friends assume traditional stereotypes in their marriages after kids come along. ¬†You know, the wife does most (if not all) of the cooking, cleaning, and child-rearing. ¬†The husband is only “on call” for those desperate moments when she is going to lose her shit. ¬†I’m sorry, but it’s 2017. ¬†This should NOT be okay, in my opinion. Yes, I understand it’s hard for some moms (including myself…) to “let go” of some of those tasks. ¬†But honestly, it is much better for your marriage in the long run to be a PARTNERSHIP. ¬†When you’re out to eat with a fussy baby, take turns with who walks around with him/her. ¬†Take turns with diaper changes while at home, bath time, bed time, clean up after meals, the list goes on and on. ¬†This is something I’m VERY passionate about, and I often have a hard time keeping my mouth shut when I see friends close to me slowly losing their minds because their partner won’t pitch in to help. ¬†Trust me…it won’t do you (or your marriage) any favors by trying to do it all on your own.
  6. Breastfeeding is HARD. This is something I’d heard but didn’t realize just how difficult until I was in the thick of it. It goes beyond cracked, bleeding nipples–at least there is a fix for that. ¬†It’s painful, it’s different for every person AND every baby, and don’t even get me started on how hard it is to work and breastfeed/pump. ¬†That being said, I am SO thankful I was able to do it for as long as I did with both girls. ¬†Knocking on wood, but neither girl has ever been on an antibiotic in their lives…and I know the benefits of breast milk have had a lot to do with that. ¬†On the flip side, I’ve had friends who’ve been unable to breastfeed after trying, and of COURSE you have to do what is best for YOU and the baby. ¬†It’s not worth weeks of tears and beating yourself up emotionally. ¬†“Fed is BEST” – no matter how you do it.
  7. You will be doing a shit ton of laundry. (<– see what I did there?) ¬†I’m very particular about the girls’ clothes and work hard on alllll of the stains that we come across. ¬†First you have blow outs, then baby food, then table food, then mud/dirt/the marker they someone found hidden in the junk drawer….you get it. ¬†I’ve learned it’s important to work on stains QUICKLY and never, ever, ever put clothes in the dryer unless you’re able to completely wash the stain¬†out–the dryer “sets” the stain, and then it becomes almost impossible to get out.
  8. People will always suggest your baby is teething, tired, hungry, etc. whenever he/she is crying. ¬†Sometimes, they are just fussy! ¬†And fussy is okay and completely normal. ¬†Both our girls experienced “the witching hours” for a few weeks: ¬†between the hours of 4-7, they were more likely to be fussy. ¬†We knew this and were just prepared to walk around with them during those times. ¬†Yes, crying does often indicate one of the above issues, but NOT always.
  9. ¬†There’s no “perfect formula“. ¬†If there was….wouldn’t we all be not need to read lists like this? ūüėČ ¬†But really. ¬†What works for one parent may or may not work for YOU. ¬†Take advice, talk to others…but know that YOU have to make the decision for your child in the end. ¬†It’s scary to someone like me who struggles with even choosing what to wear each day, but it does get easier.
  10. If you aren’t friends with a doctor or nurse….become friends with one. NOW.¬†I cannot tell you how many times I have texted my cousin (a school nurse who¬†previously worked at Riley) and friend (an excellent ER nurse whose dad is a doctor/mom is a nurse). Of course I always called our own doctor with the big concerns/questions, but you’ll have approximately 1,000,008 questions/things that come up where you’ll need advice. ¬†I still continue to bounce things off of these 2, and thankfully they are ever so happy to help!