July 30, 2010

WashPOD Winner!

I know I'm posting a little later than I had intended, but the video I had to upload took forever to...well...upload, and it took me awhile to make as well.

I had Austin help me out which was a bit tougher than I thought it would be, but we managed to pick a winner nonetheless!

To make it fair, I tore up 35 pieces of paper and wrote down numbers on each which corresponded to the position in which each person commented.  Number 1 was the first person to comment, number 2 was the second person to comment, and so on and so on.  The people who commented twice were still only counted once.

Watch the video below to find out if you're the winner!



And for those of you who don't watch the video, congratulations to lucky #4, Brooke from The Bridges!!  Send me your mailing address girl and your washPOD will be on its way!

July 29, 2010

Double H-O-T

Not only is the heat index in the 100's here in the upstate of SC, but as it turns out, our AC units just aren't big enough or powerful enough to keep our house below 80.  We spent $400 to have someone come and tell us that.  Gosh, don't you just love throwing away $400?!  That would have gotten me that double stroller I've been wanting AND an entire new wardrobe at Kohl's with my 30% off coupon.  Putting it that way kind of makes me want to cry...

Anyway, you just don't know how miserable it is to run around after kids, take showers, get ready, do laundry, cook and clean with a constant flow of sweat dripping off your forehead.  It wouldn't be that bad if I could just sit back in shorts and a tank top all day, but I've got two little portable heaters (aka Austin & Owen) hanging out on me at all times in addition to running around taking care of the household chores.

I had been complaining about the heat for weeks, but my dear husband just didn't seem to understand.....until he woke up from a Sunday afternoon nap completely drenched.  Funny how it takes a man to experience something for himself before he will believe that his wife hasn't just been nagging and complaining for fun.

So, I was on the phone when Ryan got up from his nap in the sauna better known as our bedroom, and the next thing I know, I'm watching as he's running around getting himself and Austin dressed to go to Costco and try and find a solution to our AC woes.  I looked up from my phone call to say goodbye to my boys and this is what I saw:


Not only are they wearing matching novelty shirts, but Austin's shirt is about 2 sizes too small and it's paired with his nice Vive La Fete seersucker shorts that he wore to church that morning.  The whole ensemble is topped off with Austin's bright orange Crocs, because apparently Crocs go with everything...  

I let the outfit slide since I wasn't accompanying them on this trip and wouldn't have to endure the odd looks.  Not to mention, it wasn't even close to topping this unforgettable fashion faux pas:



It all worked out pretty good though, because an hour later they brought home this little goodie:


Hey, were not above having a portable AC unit on the floor of our bedroom!  Especially if it means for a sweat-free night's sleep!

July 27, 2010

The (Not)Eating Cycle

Eating...not eating...eating...not eating...

Austin is constantly rotating through this cycle and it's beyond frustrating.  Once I think he's finally in a good place for a few days, trying new things, eating things I know he likes, acting interested in food...he reverts back to the not eating part of the cycle and I just don't understand it and I get scared he's not getting the proper nutrition an active, growing toddler needs!!

When he was in one of his good eating spells a few weeks ago I went to the grocery store and bought stuff to make a bunch of yummy and healthy new meals.  I was so excited to let him try pita pizzas, corn on the cob, veggie burgers, hummus...and then, snap, he decided it was going to be nothing but PB&J, oatmeal, applesauce and yogurt.  I don't think he touched a vegetable for weeks!

A month ago he couldn't get enough of peas and corn and now he won't even put them in his mouth.  He used to love a grilled cheese and this week he won't take a single bite.  Pasta was his new favorite meal and now he just wants to stab it with his fork and put it in my mouth.  Chicken nuggets were always a winner and now he feeds them to the dog.

The past few weeks have been especially difficult because that dreaded teething started up again.  There seemed to be more food on my floor at any given time than in his belly. Austin was in so much pain that he would just randomly start crying in the middle of playing and couldn't even nap for long without waking in a puddle of tears and drool.  Those molars were a doozie!

Today he ate 2 chicken nuggets at lunch and a piece of zucchini at dinner.  I have high hopes that we're getting back into the "eating" part of the cycle, for at least a little while.  In the meantime, however, in dealing with his nutrition, Austin still loves his milk, gummy vitamins and will eat a cup of this at least twice a day:


Oh, how I love you, Yo Baby.
You sneaky little devils, you!

July 26, 2010

H-O-T!

What do you do when the temperature outside reads this?


You pack up the kids and the wagon...



...and head to the pool, which feels more like bath water right now...


...which is just another reason these guys like it so much!



July 23, 2010

WashPOD Review & GIVEAWAY!


I've posted several pictures of Owen in the WashPOD recently and many people have commented, e-mailed and asked me questions about it.  Since there seemed to be so much interest, I contacted the company who sells them, Prince Lionheart, and asked if they would be willing to help me host a giveaway so that one of you could win WashPOD of your own.  They quickly responded and happily agreed to provide a free WashPOD to one of my lucky readers!!

For those of you not familiar with this product, here is the manufacturer's description:

Introducing the ultimate warm and secure space for bathtime. The WashPOD provides a better way to bathe your little one in an environment that emulates that of a mother's womb. The baby in the WashPOD will naturally convert into the fetal position. Because this is such a familiar feeling it will quickly soothe, calm, and relax the baby and allow them to bathe without feeling out of their element. Recommended by physicians and midwives as one of the best ways to bathe your newborn baby. Age: 0-6 months.


My Review:
I personally decided to purchase the WashPOD shortly after Austin was born.  He was born in the winter and while he always enjoyed his baths, I felt the constant need to cover him with warm washcloths or pour water over him to keep him warm since the sling in his baby tub kept him in a lying down position, causing the front of his body to be mostly out of the water.  As a new mother I was always so concerned about my baby's temperature and whether or not he was comfortable since he couldn't exactly say, "Mom, I'm cold, get me outta here!"  I just knew there had to be a better way.

I came across the WashPOD after it was recommended by a friend and we were big fans right from the beginning!  It not only kept him much warmer since his most of his body was in the water now, but it also let him bathe in a sitting position which he seemed to enjoy a lot more.  I really enjoyed bathing Austin in the WashPOD and was sad when he grew out of it around 6 months.  I was excited to bring the WashPOD back out once Owen was born and was thrilled when he seemed to enjoy it just as much as his big brother had!

The WashPOD is probably best used once your baby has pretty good head control but they don't need to be able to sit up on their own.  You just fill the pod up with a couple inches of warm water and sit baby down in it on the cushy white foam piece.  They naturally sit up on their own in a comfortable fetal-like position and you're free to wash away all while staring into your sweet baby's happy little face!

Ok...on to the GIVEAWAY...

The people at Prince Lionheart only asked that I give my readers the following single guideline when entering to win the free WashPOD:


-Reader must sign-up for monthly newsletter by completing form here: https://app.e2ma.net/app/view:Join/signupId:71950/acctId:18589
We do not spam, nor disclose any information to other businesses. We also conform to a 1 email per month rule so as not to inundate our consumers. On certain occasions, though rare, we may send out 2 emails per month if there is a baby model search, or huge event for example.

So, once you sign up for the newsletter, just come back here and leave a comment letting me know that you did and you will be entered to win!!

The giveaway will end next Friday at noon and I'll announce the winner by that afternoon.  I'm thinking of a really fun way to announce the winner as well which will probably involve Austin and the video camera.  We'll see...

Good luck to everyone!!  I know you'll enjoy the WashPOD just as much as I have!

July 22, 2010

Double Baby Bath Time

Last night was one of those rare nights when neither kid was on their regular schedule and Ryan wouldn't be home until late.  So, it was just me, a wild and wide awake toddler and his sleepy (and getting cranky) little brother.

I decided to give Owen a bath to settle him down, but when that bath water started running, so did Austin, straight for the tub!  I couldn't keep that bath lovin' baby away so I just decided to give it a shot and have our first double baby bath time.

Little did I know both boys would enjoy bathing together so much and it would turn out to be the highlight of my day as well!  Also, who knew the ice cream container from the Greenville Drive games would make such a fun and interesting bath toy!

I dare you not to smile while looking at the following pictures.  :)

"Mommy, what is he doing in my bath?"
"This hat is a little too small for me..."
"...but, just maybe..."
"I think it fits!"
"One little adjustment..."
"There!  Perfect!"
"Ok, my turn!"

Baby Blair Continued...

I'm so excited about little Miss Blair that I just had to post again!  I talked to Keri this afternoon and things are going well and big sister Kylie is just loving her baby sister!  I also finally got the stats on the sweet little munchkin and wanted to post them.

Blair Kinsley McIlravy
7/21/10  9:28 am
7 lbs.  19.5 inches




July 21, 2010

Baby Blair is Here!

My best friend, Keri, gave birth to her beautiful baby girl today!

I spoke to Keri shortly after Blair made her entrance and mom and baby are both doing fantastic!  In all the excitement of the new arrival, however, I forgot to get the usual "baby stats," but I did get an adorable picture of the newest McIlravy.


 Just look at that head full of hair!!!

A big, big congrats to Keri, Shawn & big sister Kylie on their sweet little miracle!

Baby Blue Eyes


I just can't get enough of those baby blues!

July 20, 2010

Toys 4 a 1 Year Old


A mommy friend of mine recently wrote to me and asked that I suggest some toys for the upcoming 1st birthday of her twins.  I thought it would be a great opportunity to not only put together a great list of some of Austin's favorite things, but to blog the list and share it with anyone else who might also like some suggestions!

Here is a list of toys that seemed to entertain for months and totally get their moneys worth in my opinion.  If anyone else has any suggestions, feel free to add on!

1.  Leap Frog Ride-On Train (or any ride on toy for that matter) -He got that one for Christmas and has seriously played with it every single day since then.  At first he just liked to play with the knobs and buttons and have it make sounds, but now he does that and rides it all over the house on a daily basis!



2.  Nesting Blocks - At first we would build the towers and he loved to knock them down but now he is able to build on his own....and still loves to knock them down.



3.  Sing Along Stage - This has been a favorite from the beginning and we still put it on rotation and it still gets played with constantly!  Even Austin's little friends who would come over would love this thing.  The songs are really cute and catchy and the mirror is always and big hit!



4.  Sensory Balls - He became obsessed with these balls after playing with them at Bouncing Babies and they pretty much started his love affair with all things round.



5.  Cookie Shape Sorter - Austin had this since he was 6 months but didn't really learn how to use it until he was about 1.  At first he just liked to put the shapes in the top and dump them out and make the jar make sounds and light up.  Now that he knows his shapes, numbers and colors he likes to tell me what color and number is on each cookie and make it fit in the appropriate place.


6.  Laugh & Learn Home - Every child I've ever met has loved this thing!  Austin got kind of bored of it after a few months and it took up a lot of space in our living room so we moved it upstairs to the other play area, but now he plays with it every time he goes up there!  It has so many fun things to do and cute music and sounds.



7.  Leap Frog Music Table - This is another favorite that has been around since Austin was just sitting up (and standing as you can see).  He loved to push and pull all the buttons and turn the page in the middle.  He liked to pull up on it before he started walking and would dance along with the music.  This one is upstairs now too, but now that he's older he gets the learning aspect of it and likes to sing along with the abc song, say the colors of the piano keys, push the shapes and he still dances to the music!



8.  Busy Poppin' Pals - Austin was obsessed with this thing for months!!  It took him awhile to learn how to make each one pop up but he loved to try and could do all 5 by around 15 months.  It's a little too easy for him now, but we'll bring it out every month or so and he'll still mess with it for awhile.

9.  Fisher Price Superstar Stacker-  There's a good chance you already have one of these, but Austin played with this for a long time as well.  It's a little too young for him now as well, but he'll still put it together to watch it light up.



10.  Radio Flyer Pathfinder Wagon- Hands down the best gift Austin got for his 1st birthday!!  He quit enjoying riding around in his stroller so we tried him in the wagon and he still loves it!!  This wagon also has 2 seats, straps and cup holders.  We take him on rides through the neighborhood and to the zoo and park in it.  He gets the enjoyment of riding without being so constricted and he can see out in all directions.



11.  Board Books- Austin has always loved to read but would really sit and listen and become engaged in a book after he turned 1.  He's always liked touch and feel books or books that make you do certain activities like lift a flap etc.



12.  Learn & Sing Teddy - He actually wasn't that into this at first but really started to like it in the past several months.  It's really cute and educational.



13.  Busy Ball Popper- This is just a really neat toy that's fun to watch and to play with.  It only lasts for a few minutes at a time in our house though because the balls pop everywhere and eventually roll under the furniture not to be seen again for a few days.  Austin has enjoyed this one for many, many months though.


July 18, 2010

Picture Parade

I don't really have anything to actually blog about right now but I feel like I should since its been a few days.  Besides our weekly trip to Barnes & Noble and a few quick shopping trips, we basically just hung out around the house and did a lot of nothing!  So, since I have nothing to really say right now, enjoy the parade of pictures from our rather uneventful week!

This was the best shot I could get of both boys in their matching shirts!


"Mom, I think it's about time for supper!"


"Mmmm, blueberries!"


"Guuullp!"


Owen loves to sit up and look around!


You're never too big for the bébéPOD!



Look who found his thumb!


Austin helped me bake (I mean taste) again!


"I just need one more ball!"


Impromptu photo shoot.  Look at that sweet baby face!


Vrooooom!


Austin saying hi to everyone at Whole Foods.


Owen is not so sure about his big brother driving him through the grocery store!
By the way, who knew two small children could take up an entire shopping cart?!
I had to carry a separate basket for the actual groceries!  :-)

July 16, 2010

Wash Pod Comparison

Austin at 3 months 1 week

Owen at 2 months 2 weeks

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