May 31, 2009

Take me out to the ballgame...

The Harris family attended not 1, but 4 baseball games in Clemson this weekend for the NCAA regionals.  We had great seats in the shade for the day games and some up close seats for the evening ones.  Austin did fabulous and had a great time flirting with all the people around us and watching the action.  He even got in all his feedings and naps both days even though we weren't at home for most of the time!  Ryan and I realized how much we miss Clemson after spending much of our weekend there and man has the town changed since we were there for school!!  We hope to make many more day trips to our favorite college town this summer and you'll see us there most every weekend come football season!  Austin is going to have no choice but to be a Clemson fan, he's already attended a football game as well as several basketball and now baseball games.  Good thing he looks super cute in his orange and purple!


Austin and daddy walking into the game, Austin with the tickets in hand and ready to watch some baseball!

Napping in mommy's arms, worn out from all the excitement.  (My arms were also worn out after holding my little 22 lb. nugget for 45 minutes!!)

Austin loves daddy's baseball caps, and doesn't he look just too cute!

Paying close attention to the game and enjoying the nice shade.  It got up to 91 degrees!! 

Yes, we did it on purpose.  Austin and mommy wearing our matching Clemson t-shirts!

May 29, 2009

Baby fever!


Now that Austin is approaching the 1 year old mark, I can't help but look back at those videos and pictures of him when he was a newborn and feel a little sad inside.  Unlike a lot of people, I really enjoyed the newborn stage.  I loved holding him all the time without him wiggling to get away, carrying him around the house without my arms getting so tired, having him fall asleep on me and in turn, falling asleep with him snuggled in my arms.  Those moments seem to be the ones I remember most and I really miss them sometimes.  Actually, sometimes I miss them so much that I think about having another one, and then I realize I've come down with baby fever!

I have only contracted baby fever just recently and it has a lot to do with the fact that Austin is growing up so fast and becoming so independent and it also has to do with the fact that so many people around me seem to be having babies or getting pregnant.  Now let me just state that under no circumstances will we attempt to cure my baby fever anytime soon, but I just wanted to bring up the fact that it is indeed present.  After all, when Austin was born we agreed not to try for another one until #1, he was at least a year old, and #2, I was back down to my pre-pregnancy weight (and I have a feeling #1 will happen sooner than #2).

Anyway, when the baby fever is hitting hard there has always been one thing I can do to help it "break" and I just wanted to share that with the rest of you out there with this same problem.  Ryan and I have discussed that we only want to have 2 children, 3 at the most, but most likely only 2.  If we have another baby now, not only will it be completely different than the first time around considering we will have a 1+ year old in the house as well, but it might possibly be the last time I ever get to be pregnant and have a baby...which means the last time I'll ever get to go through the newborn stage!  Thinking about that seems to cure me every time and in some cases makes me want to wait even longer than originally planned.  

All that being said, Austin is my #1 baby right now and honestly, if I could, I'd rather just rewind to the day he was born and live it all over again to cure the baby fever rather than have another one.  It's hard to imagine loving another child as much as I love him, although I know it is possible.  

Well, as I expected, my baby fever just broke and now I'm off to go give my little man tons of hugs and kisses and enjoy every moment of it, even if he is trying to wiggle away the whole time!

May 28, 2009

Random nutrition ranting

Lately I have been obsessing over the nutrition that my little man is getting.  I know that for the time being, his formula provides most of the nutrition he needs, but there are still things like iron and protein that I know he needs and constantly worry he's not getting enough of.  And on top of that, now I've got to worry about DHA, BPA and a bunch of other 3 letter acronyms that I don't totally understand.  I've gotten guidance from a feeding chart the pediatrician gave me and I've compared it with countless other similar guides to make sure I have all the knowledge, but I am still totally confused!!

Austin isn't really picky, he loves all fruits so far, but only eats three veggies and will only take cereal when it's mixed with something else.  Now I don't blame him there, that cereal reminds me of paper mache and even Ryan (who will eat ANYTHING) isn't a fan, but the guides say he NEEDS it and lots of it!  I just can't figure out how to balance everything into 3 feedings a day where he gets all the proper nutrition and isn't spitting out or puking up everything I have to shove in his mouth!

Oh, and don't get me started on what in the world I'm going to do after he quits formula!  I mean, I seriously get by on a pack of crackers for lunch and a sandwich for dinner sometimes and then suddenly I've got to worry about preparing 3 nutritionally balanced meals a day!  I guess I've got proof that one can live off of bologna, cheese slices and chicken fingers alone, after all, I watched my little sister do it.  To this day, however, she is about one of the pickiest eaters I know and my dear husband has NO patience for picky eaters!!  (Sorry to pick on you Catherine, I know you're trying hard and doing much better now!)

So, there you go, just another one of those random things I worry about on a daily basis, something I never imagined worrying about when thinking about raising a kid, but now terrifies me almost every day!  It's a constant worry being totally in charge of what goes inside the body of a child.  And here I thought it was hard keeping track of the things I should and shouldn't eat while I was pregnant!!

May 27, 2009

Semi-Wordless Wednesday

I just had to precede this post by saying that Austin likes to spend the greater part of his mornings chasing after our animals.  Today I simply followed him, following them, with camera in tow.





May 26, 2009

Back to the crawling...

I can't tell you how excited we were this weekend to see our little man start crawling so well....and now that it's been a few days, were completely over it. Ok, no, not really, it's a great accomplishment and Austin has proven time and time again that he is a quick learner and pretty advanced for his age which we are quite proud of, but boy was life easier when he stayed where you put him!! :) I sure love to see that little baby behind wiggling away from me as he crawls across the floor...but it's only a matter of seconds before I'm up and pointing him in a different direction so he can't get into trouble!



His new favorite activities are crawling under his Exersaucer, crawling over to the bookcase and pulling out all the books, crawling into the kitchen and trying to get a hold of Lucy's food and water bowls, pulling up on the treadmill and trying to climb on it, crawling under the coffee table, mounting the box of baby wipes and trying to push it around the floor, pulling out all the diapers from their cubby and making his way under the end table and getting out all the magazines. He loves to crawl and will hardly stay in one place anymore. I can't take my eyes off of him when he's down on the floor because he always spots the one thing he shouldn't be playing with and makes a b-line towards it! The dog toys, shoes and animals seem to be his favorite targets so far.



Along with his new skill have come a handful of minor injuries as well. His poor little knees are so red and swollen from all his moving around and even though he doesn't seem to mind, I worry about it. His BabyLegs have helped with the carpet burn and he stays in his cute little leg warmers all day now to try and keep those knees from getting too sore. He has also had a few bumps on the head from crawling into things and from trying to crawl under things. He loves to try and go underneath the coffee table but he can't quite clear it on his hands and knees without ducking his head a little. He got his worst boo-boo today when he crawled right into the side of the wall and we had to treat his goose egg with great grandma Elsie's boo-boo bunny. He didn't exactly like the feeling of the ice on his head, but the little bunny was fun to play with!


One advantage to his crawling (besides the obvious mobility and learning aspects) is that he seems to use up so much energy now trying to get around that he has been taking some really great naps! He's been going down for his morning nap at 9am and sleeping for 2 hours and he's back down at 2 pm for another hour and a half. Around 6pm he takes a little power nap for about 30 minutes and then we eat, take a bath, get ready for bed and lights out by 8:30pm. He seems to be getting about 14 hours of sleep everyday now which is right on par with what he needs. He was only getting about 12.5 hours a day before the crawling.


So now that I've gotten a little taste of life with a crawler, I'm not quite as anxious to see him take his first steps. Oh the day he does will be awesome and so memorable....but I'm ok with it if it takes him until about 14-15 months. Of course his daddy was walking by 10 months so I've got a feeling it's going to happen sooner than later! After all, he's done everything else early!

Weekend Wrap-up!


It's officially Tuesday which means our fabulous long weekend has finally come to an end.  As busy as we've been, I can't believe I'm actually still awake, but I wanted to get this post out tonight in case I don't have time to tomorrow.  I know the grandparents anxiously check the blog every morning looking for a new post so I want to make sure they've got one!!

As you have probably seen, I posted a couple videos of Austin crawling, a skill which he officially mastered this weekend along with saying da-da and ba-ba for the first time!!  It's been such a fun and crazy weekend and I feel like we've taken another giant leap into the world of parenting.  More on that later however....right now I just want to update on our weekend adventures and share a few great pictures.



On Saturday we traveled to Anderson to visit with friends Aaron and Jeff for a Memorial Day cookout.  We were hoping to do a little swimming too, but the weather didn't quite cooperate and the pool was far too cold!  We did have some great food, drinks and fun with our good friends who are celebrating their 1 year wedding anniversary this coming week!  As you can see here, I was 19 weeks pregnant with baby Austin when they were married!



Sunday was another fun day as we ventured out to Freedom Weekend Aloft in Simpsonville to try and catch a glimpse of the hot air balloons taking flight and to see Sister Hazel/Gavin DeGraw in concert at the outdoor pavilion.  Unfortunately the weather wasn't cooperating for take-off and with rain in the forecast, the balloons were all packed up.  This is the second year in a row we've gone with hopes of seeing the balloons but have been disappointed due to weather conditions...maybe next year it'll work out!  Anyway, we still had fun people watching (and boy were there some sights!) and we enjoyed listening to Sister Hazel but had to get home and get our little nugget in bed before Gavin took the stage.



Today (although technically yesterday now...) we enjoyed a nice lunch at Mimi's (yum!) and then headed out to the pool for the afternoon.  The rain really cooled off the big pool so we played in the kiddie pool the whole time and let Austin float around in his car floaty.  The afternoon turned out to be pretty nice and we were thankful to finally see some sunshine!  Too bad it had to be on the last day of our nice long weekend.  

And speaking of long weekends....we sure are going to miss daddy when he goes back to work tomorrow.  Three whole days at home and we were all spoiled!  

May 25, 2009

More crawling...even better!

Look how far he's come in only 2 days!! He's speedy on the carpet now and getting pretty good with the hardwoods.

May 22, 2009

Into EVERYTHING!

So it would seem that Austin got the memo that he is 7 months old now and it's time to get up and get moving!  In only a week he has begun to crawl much better, making 5-6 moves before he sprawls out or sits up and then he's back at it again.  He has already made it to the hallway and kitchen where there are wooden floors.  He's not quite sure about the feel of the wood as opposed to the cushy carpet in the living room but he seems to be adjusting.  And speaking of carpet, I now have to vacuum at least every day because he seems to notice every speck of dirt or debris that has been tracked in and of course it goes directly into his mouth.  It would be a little easier if we didn't have a very bad doggy who likes to go and get garbage and shred it on the floor!  I turned my back for less than 30 seconds to get the phone and when I came back he had an empty toilet paper roll that Lucy had dragged in.  I think they're in cahoots!



So remember when I said in my 7 month post that he wasn't really into pulling up?  Well in the little bit of time that has passed he has decided he wants to try and pull up on anything and everything!  It's making me increasingly nervous and now I sit here and scan the house many times a day just picturing the disasters that could possibly occur.  For the most part it looks pretty safe, but you never know!  I just heard about a little boy who was killed because he pulled a dresser over on top of him so I'm extremely paranoid now. 

But paranoias aside, I am excited that Austin is able to move around and better explore his environment.  He is learning so fast and it makes me a proud mama to see him accomplish these tasks so quickly and easily.  I love to just sit back and watch him go, and that's what I have to do a lot of the time because all I seem to be good for now is someone to feed him, someone for him to pull up on, someone to un-stick him from akward positions he gets into, and someone to comfort him when he knocks himself in the head with a toy!  Oh he still loves his mama, but his new found talents comsume a lot of his time and attention now.  At this rate, he'll be driving before I know it!!


May 19, 2009

Mr. Independent


I have finally given in and let him do it himself. It's kinda cute watching him hold his bottle all by himself, but it's just another sign that he's growing up WAY too fast!

May 18, 2009

New life!

I had noticed for a few days that everytime I passed this tree in our front yard a mama bird would fly out of it. When we came back from our walk this weekend, I asked Ryan to look for the nest and try and see if there were any eggs in it. He not only saw a couple eggs, but a few newly hatched little birdies chirping away! The nest was low so he was able to get a video of the little birdies in their nest to show me. I just thought it was so awesome and had to post it. I've never seen little birds this young and I can't really tell which end is which, but how sweet is it that a new little birdie family just hatched right outside our door! :)

Worn out!


This morning after a little breakfast and play time, I put Austin in his Jumperoo to bounce out some of that energy while I had breakfast of my own and tidied up the kitchen. Things started to get a little quiet and when I peeked into the living room I saw that by sweet little guy had fallen asleep in his jumper! It was about the cutest, yet most pitiful thing I have ever seen so I couldn't resist snapping a few pictures before I took my sleepyheaded boy in my arms and laid him down in his soft crib for a nap. Poor thing must have been exhausted because he was napping away at 8:30am...about an hour and a half before his usual nap time.

May 16, 2009

Water baby!








Yesterday evening we decided to take Austin to the pool for the first time. We got him all dressed in swim diaper and trunks (so cute!) and headed down the street to our neighborhood pool. We were in luck when we walked in and saw no one was there so I hiked up my pants and we waded around the 1 ft. kiddie pool. Austin wasn't sure what to think of it at first and had this look of terror on his face as we dipped him into that chilly wet stuff, but soon enough he was grinning and splashing and having so much fun that daddy decided to get in and join him!

The water was cool at first but you got used to it quickly and it certainly wasn't too cold for the little guy once he got over the initial shock. We all had fun in the kiddie pool and then daddy decided to take Austin into the big pool for a little more fun. They had a great time and I only wish I had worn my suit so I could have gotten in too! Hopefully, if the weather will cooperate, we will head back out there this weekend for some family pool time and bring Austin's new car floaty!!

May 15, 2009

7 months old!

I feel like just yesterday I was writing a post about Austin being 6 months old so it's hard to believe it has been an entire month since then. I told Austin this morning when he woke up that he needed to slow down a little bit because mommy thinks he's growing up way too fast! I mean, I sat down at Ryan's softball game last night with his buddy who has a 2 month old little girl and I seriously couldn't remember Austin being that small...EVER! Those newborn memories are starting to fade and everything is changing so quickly. I love to watch him grow up and learn new things, but I'm just so scared that by the time he's a year old, I won't be able to remember what all we went through to get there. I guess that is just another good reason to keep up the blog, so I can always look back! Just maybe this month will go by a little more slowly because 8 months old just sounds way too old for my little guy, it's 2/3 of a year!

Anyway, I feel like I say this every month, but boy what a busy month this has been! Austin has learned so many new things and made so many big changes that I can hardly believe it. Here's a list of his most recent accomplishments:

-He is sleeping 10-12 hours a night in his own room which is working out fabulously and he takes 2 (sometimes 3) good naps a day.

-He is eating 3 square meals everyday and is finally loving baby food. He can't get enough of his mashed bananas, but still won't eat those darn peas.

-Austin can drink from a sippy cup and enjoys drinking his water with a hint of white grape or pear juice. He can also hold and feed himself his bottle, but I still like to help, I don't want him to become Mr. Independent just yet!

-Just recently he has learned to push himself from his tummy into a sitting position and loves to sit up in his crib after a nap and turn on his Rainforest soother. (I laugh every time I hear those rainforest sounds coming over the monitor)

-Austin is slowly getting the hang of crawling but finds it much easier to just roll or army crawl his way around. He really enjoys exploring all the new places in the living room and especially loves to try and get my shoes.

-He has the ability to pull up on things but doesn't try to do it much. He's still too busy exploring his new found mobility on the floor to worry about what's in a chair or on top of the coffee table. He loves to stand in my lap, however, it's just the right height for him to get a fistful of my hair or the sunglasses on top of my head.

-He also has the ability to stand on his own for a few seconds as long as we place him just right. He likes to stand on his tippy toes a lot which makes it hard for him to balance sometimes. I did this as a child too, I wonder if it's hereditary?

-Austin can be very talkative when the mood strikes him and likes to say ma-ma, ah-gee, and to blow raspberries.

-Austin is 21 lbs. and 28.5 inches long (roughly 1/2 my size!)- both of which are in the 75th-95th percentiles for his age ( I will get exact numbers when he goes back to the doctor in July). He is wearing size 12 months or 12-18 months clothing and a size 3 diaper.


-Finally, as you can see, Austin LOVES Lucy (and she doesn't mind him too much). He smiles everytime he sees her and tries to pet her whenever she's close enough for him to get his hands on. He finds the kitties somewhat interesting but Lucy is his favorite by far. I wouldn't be surprised if the two of them became best buds before too long!

May 13, 2009

Oh my, how I LOVE this little guy!




And Austin just loves being outside (and mommy and daddy too of course)! The past couple days have been fabulous for hanging out in the back yard in the cool green grass and swinging in the new swing. Our next adventure might have to be making our way to the neighborhood pool for a little afternoon dip. I can't wait to get him in his swim trunks for the first time!!

And there he goes...

I knew it was coming soon, but I didn't expect it this early! Austin has learned to crawl/scoot/lunge and with this new found ability has been making his way all over the living room and discovering all that previously un-explored territory. As I might have expected, his first mission was to make his way to the stack of DVD's under the TV stand and once he was bored with that he made his way to his Exersaucer and proceeded to try and crawl underneath it. He ended up getting stuck and so I had to intervene, but I swear he got that way on his own, no help from me at all!

In other news, I went to get him up from his morning nap just a few minutes ago and entered his room to find him sitting up in the middle of his crib playing with his blankie! Until now I had to place him in the sitting position but now he is going from tummy to back to sitting all on his own! He had been doing this tripod thing for a day or two now and I knew it was only a matter of time before he learned to bend his knees and pull his legs around, but I never expected to find that he had done it for the first time today and while in his crib! I guess we need to lower the mattress now since I know he is able to pull himself up on the railing if he wants to.

I just can't believe that in one day all these things have just clicked and he's already seemed to master skills that he's only been attempting for a short time. Since his nap he has pushed into a sitting position at least 4-5 more times and then continues to go back to his tummy and scoot all around! He has already made his way back to the DVDs but I did a quick babyproofing while he was napping so when he got over there and saw there was nothing to try and get, he just rolled to his back and began chewing on his toes. :)

Yay Austin! I'm so proud of my little guy for accomplishing such big tasks but I'm also a little terrified as I look through my house and see all the things he can get into now!!

May 12, 2009

Green Pricklies

The other day I was trying to get a good shot of Austin in front of our pretty flowers to go in my new Mother's Day frame. I sat him down in front of the flowers directly on the ground and he immediately gave me a look of absolute disgust. He seemed to be fascinated, confused and totally annoyed by those little green prickly things underneath and all around him. I did everything I knew how to do to try and make him smile but he just wasn't having it. If anyone would have seen the crazy moves and sounds I was making to try and get just the tiniest grin they surely would have called a local institution! After awhile, Austin's disgust turned into curiosity and he began digging for handfuls of the dirt and grass. After a quick examination of this strange new stuff, those tiny dirt filled hands went straight for his mouth and the photoshoot was done! I managed to get a couple of cute shots and everytime I look at them I just can't help myself but to laugh at his little expressions!

May 11, 2009

Simultaneous tortures!


So after several days of an extremely fussy, clingy, and overall unhappy little man along with a clean bill of health from our precautionary doctor's visit, I have finally deduced that Austin is simultaneously teething, going through a growth spurt and just getting frustrated in general with the fact that he's trying so hard to crawl with no such luck. Poor little guy!

My happy-go-lucky baby boy has made his appearances few and far between these past few days and it's just killing me not knowing what to do or what exactly is wrong. We visited the doctor last week to make sure we weren't dealing with an ear infection and left with a clean bill of health. It's just so hard when your little one can't tell you what's going on in their tiny bodies and I end up feeling like Dr. House trying desperately to figure out a medical mystery!

I guess all I can do for now is just give him lots of extra love and hugs and kisses until he's back to feeling like himself again!

May 10, 2009

Horray for Mommy's Day!

Today was my first official Mother's Day as a mommy and experiencing this day as a mom makes you truly understand what an important day it really is. I remember as a kid I always wondered why there was no "Kid's Day" and my mom would say "...because every day is kid's day!" It may have taken me 27 years, but I finally understand what she meant, for mommies celebrate their children every day! However, I think that sometimes moms aren't celebrated enough for the work that they do.

Being a Mom is a full-time job, and for those working moms out there, like my own, it's a second full-time job! A mommy's job is a 24/7, down and dirty, up all night, constantly worrying, never ending, always cleaning, rarely restful, money spending, and attention giving kind of job.... BUT, you never forget all the effortless smiling, laughter and giggles, hugs and kisses, happy tears, sad goodbyes, special moments, important milestones, and the pure love and joy a child can bring to your life. Mommies have the hardest jobs in the world, not because of dirty diapers and 3 am feedings or even because of all that dreaded school age drama...but because they work so hard and spend so much time trying to raise the best child they possibly can and then they have to let them go and set them loose into the world and just pray that they did everything they could.

Like my mama always said...motherhood is the hardest, yet most rewarding job you can EVER have. As I see Austin's life unfolding before my eyes, I know it's going to get harder (and if he's anything like his daddy when he was a kid, I REALLY ain't seen nothin' yet!) but I didn't become a mother because I thought it would be easy....I am a mother because I have seen the special bond that a mother and child can have, the unwaivering love and the happiness that children can bring to a family. But first and foremost, I am a mother because God blessed me and gave me the sweetest and most amazing gift He could possibly give. Everyday I thank Him for bringing Austin into this world, and more importantly, I thank Him for making me his mother!

Happy Mother's Day to all you amazing, hard-working, and loving moms out there. And a special thank you to my own mama, for without her love, support and guidance, I wouldn't be the fabulous mother I am today!!

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