My baby girl is growing up!

We had a fabulous weekend together. Saturday we spent the day in our "new" pop up cleaning and learning how things are put together. Lea loved crawling around on the beds. I think she'll really enjoy camping! We're excited to go out one weekend after we get back from vacation.

Lea's really been practicing waving. If you say "Hello" or "Bye Bye" while waving to her, she'll eventually start to flap her arm. It's so cute! The other "trick" she's learning is giving kisses. Just say, "Can I have a kiss?" and pucker up... she'll open her mouth, lean in towards your face (while also slightly sticking out her tongue) and give you a nice, wet kiss. I love it!!! Finally, she's really getting into 'cruising' around on the furniture. She can pull to standing on anything, including my legs, the coffee table, the dishwasher door, kitchen chairs, her high chair, the back door... you name it and she can pull up on it. Here's a pic of Lea and Bailey waiting by the back door for Daddy to come home.

 Now that Lea is a pro at crawling (and fast!) she races over to the door when I (or Daddy) get home from work. It's such a fabulous thing to come home to!

Sunday we spent the day at the Museum of Life + Science. We had a blast checking out the farm animals, the butterfly house, he dinosaur walk and there was even a small area indoors where babys and toddlers could crawl around and play. Once Lea gets older, we'll be going there more often for sure.

Now we're getting ready for our vacation. It's a little overwhelming packing for a baby. I know there are many things that we can (and will) buy once we're there... diapers, wipes, baby food, Cheerios, etc. But, I'm more concerned about what to pack in our carry on to keep Lea happy during the flights! Sippy cup, snacks, blankie, pacifier, a book?, toys?, teether?... If you have any must-have suggestions, please let me know. :)


8 months old!

Lea is 8 months old today and she crawls like a pro. Not only that, but she is so close to actually walking! She pulls herself up on anything (including mommy's leg) with ease and she's already trying to 'cruise' on the furniture.

Here's a video from this afternoon of her perfected crawling skills...

We're having a busy, busy week at our house as we get ready for our first family vacation with Lea. She'll have her first plane ride soon! I'm a little nervous but mostly anxious. I think it's really going to be a lot of fun. We'll just have to make ourselves go with the flow and stay relaxed. Kevin and I are such planners but I think we can do this. So far we haven't made any plans... other than talking about spending a day walking around Santa Fe, visiting the Albuquerque Zoo, going on a few day hikes, etc. It's really going to be great seeing Lea's Uncle Dave & Aunt Sarah and I can't wait for them to see Lea!


Mom n Me Monday

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We had a fun weekend... car auctions, Relay for Life, pop up campers and teething biscuits. It all started Friday evening. We went to a local Relay for Life event with our new Micralite Superlite stroller.  After walking for about 45 minutes we enjoyed roasted corn-on-the-cob and hot dogs. Lea and I headed home for the night but Kevin stayed until about one in the morning. Saturday morning we all slept in until 9am... even Lea! It was fabulous because she hasn't been sleeping well at all for the past several weeks. I'm talking screaming and crying for a couple hours every night at bed time. I think we're getting into separation anxiety because if you stand by the crib, without touching her or even saying anything, she's fine. But as soon as you are out of site, she looses it! Anyhow, I digress... back to our fun weekend. Saturday we all slept in then we met Grandma  Grandpap at a local car auction. That was pretty cool. Lots of 50's and 60's cars but my favorites are always the Corvettes. I'll take any year, however the 70's Stingray is my favorite. I will have a Corvette one day. Saturday afternoon we did a little grocery shopping. Lea really enjoys riding in the shopping cart. She's also getting to the point where she's reaching out and grabbing anything within her reach as we roll by. I got her some organic whole wheat teething biscuits to try and couldn't wait until we got home. So, I gave her one to chew on as we walked around the store... remember, I'm a first time mom. Needless to say, I had no clue how messy that would be! She had sticky, mushy teething biscuit all over herself and everything she touched. When we got out to the car, I stripped her down to her diaper before putting her in the car seat. So if you see one of those forwarded emails with pictures of crazy people that you see at Wal-Mart... we very well may be one of them! I'm just sayin', don't judge a book by it's cover. :)

Onto Sunday... we decided to check out a couple pop up campers for sale. We've been talking about getting one for at least a year. It's finally the season when people are selling campers so there have been a lot on-line. We found two that were in our price range and looked worthy of a visit, so off we went. By Sunday night, we were proud owners of a 1995 Viking Pop Up Camper! I'm so excited to get started cleaning it and packing it up for our first trip. I want Lea to have fun memories of camping as a little girl just as I do. Sitting in lawn chairs by a camp fire, splashing around in the lake, the smell of bug repellent and the taste of yummy s'mores. What more could you want on a beautiful summer weekend!? (Did I mention that our 'new' camper has a/c!?)

Here's a few pictures from our fun weekend... including Lea and myself for this Mommy n Me Monday. :)


Ella's Kitchen Review

Lea is well on her way into eating finger foods. Peas, carrots, banana, Cheerios, watermelon. This weekend we're going to try pasta and maybe even chicken. She still likes some things pureed, though. Sweet potatos with cinnamon, green beans with mint, prunes, applesauce. I have been making all of her food (with our Babycook) since she started eating solids. I enjoy making her food. I feel like it's something small and easy that I can do to help her grow into a healthy person. That being said, there are times when I either a) run out of frozen portions, b) don't have time to make something, c) are eating out/traveling or d) all of the above. That's where Ella's Kitchen steps in. Ella's Kitchen makes pureed organic fruits and vegetables in handy pouches for baby. We were sent some samples to try out.
  • Strawberries and Apples
  • Apples and Bananas
  • Broccoli, Peas and Pears
  • Carrots, Apples and Parsnips
  • Sweet Potato, Pumpkin, Apples and Bluberries
  • The Yellow One
  • The Red One

Paul Lindley, Ella's dad, started Ella's Kitchen because he believed that food should be healty and fun for children. There is absolutley nothing artificial in these baby foods. No preservatives, either. They use organic lemon juice instead. How cool is that? On their web site, they state, "We've found a really safe and effective way to lock in all freshness of the fruit and vegetables, without compromising the goodness. Our pureed fruits and vegetables are blended together then gently and quickly pasteurized (like milk) at 200ºF for just 10 seconds, then popped into individual pouches while still hot and held at 185ºF for another 2 and a half minutes - so that the fruits stay safe and tasty in a natural way without the use of artificial preservatives."

I bet you're wondering if it's any good, right? First, let me tell you that I try everything before I feed it to my daughter. I just don't like the idea of giving her something that I haven't or wouldn't try myself. So, of course I tried these, too. Three words: yum, Yum, YUM! The Strawberries and Apples is amazing. Can they make larger pouches so I can take it to work as an afternoon snack?! Lea loved it, too. Her favorites were the Carrot blend and the Sweet Potato blend. She just kept wanting more and more. They are pureed into such a silky smooth consistency. It's almost like a soupy smoothie.

I am going to be getting more of these to have on hand for those times when I don't have any homemade food but also for our upcoming trip out of state. These will be perfect to travel with.

Here's a video of Lea enjoying one of her favorites, Sweet Potato, Pumpkin, Apples and Bluberries, at Grandma's house. Notice how she grabs for more!

Visit the Ella's Kitchen web site for more information and to find a retailer. You can also follow them on twitter.


Mom n Me Monday

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Happy Mommy Monday!  We had a fabulous weekend.  But first, I must share that on Thursday I was surprised at the office with a gorgeous bouqet of red tulips from my daughter (and husband).  What a way to start my Mother's Day weekend!  Friday we went out to eat at our favorite seafood place, Skippers.  Lea and I had to take advantage of this photo op...

We went to our friend, Keat's 2nd birthday party on Saturday.  Lea had a blast playing and watching the older kids run around.  She also had her second taste of watermelon... and Keat must have thought it looked delicious as he took the opportunity to sneak in a little kiss...

Sunday we had fun at cousin Ross' 7th birthday party.  Lea really likes playing with her cousins, Ross, Kristin and Lilly.  It's so nice to have family close by.

As far as being a mommy goes, I always knew I wanted to be a mother but there was one point in my life when I wasn't sure if I ever would.  Thankfully, my prayers were answered and we have the most perfect daughter in the world. I am honestly blessed and couldn't be any happier!  For Mom n Me Monday, here's a picture of sleepy Lea as I took her up to bed Sunday night on my first Mother's Day.

Cuddles from Lea are hard to come by these days as she is always on the move.  She wants to stand and walk so bad.  Crawling just doesn't cut it for her. I want to throw in one more pic of Lea and I playing in the car over the weekend.  I just love the carefree, happy vibe it gives...

I would say my first mother's day was a success! :)


BooginHead Splat Mat Review

Mompreneur, Sari Crevin, started BooginHead LLC and launched their flagship product, the SippiGrip, in September 2007.  The SippiGrip saves sippy cups, toys, etc. from yucky, dirty floors and helps to keep items within your little ones reach.  In 2008 the PaciGrip was created.  Same concept as the SippiGrip but on a smaller scale to work universally with pacifiers.  Lea has a PaciGrip and let me tell ya, we do not leave the house without it!  It's the only pacifier leash we've used that actually stay attached to whatever we clip it onto. 

The newest addition to the BooginHead product line is the SplatMat.  We were thrilled to receive one to try out as Lea is really getting into solids these days and is only getting messier and messier.  This 48 inch round mat covers a very large space.  At first, I thought it was way too big (remember, I'm a first time mom) but once we put it under Lea's high chair, we realized it's a perfect size to catch everything that gets tossed, spills or falls onto the floor.  Pthalate and BPA free, the SplatMat is super easy to wipe clean.  I love the designs, too... this is the only splat mat I found that's not an obnoxious kid print.  We got the Brown Flourish pattern and it looks fabulous in our dining room. 
It also comes in an adorable Blue Trucks pattern and a pretty Pink Lace pattern.  At only $14.99, anyone can afford this super cool splat mat!

For more information and a list of retailers, visit BooginHead's web site: http://www.booginhead.com/.  You can also  find them on Facebook.


And she's off!

Just one week ago, little Lea was only rocking on her hands and knees. Now look at her go!

Mom n Me Monday

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Another week has come and gone.  My little Lea is growing and changing every single second.  She has almost perfected her crawl and has certainly perfected her 'pincer grasp'... getting a single Cheerio into her mouth on her own.

We had another busy weekend, one where we say we won't do anything and then end up busier then ever!  Lea and I spent the day Friday shopping with her Grandma Debra.  Saturday was a day for festivals.  We went to a pottery festival and a street festival.  It was a lot of fun... live music (which Lea loves), yummy food, arts & crafts and tons of people watching.  Finally. Sunday morning was spent at the farmers market getting fresh, local vegetables to make for Lea.  Then, we went to cousin Kristin's piano recital and finally to Grandma Sue & Grandpa Gene's for dinner.  Lea has such a good time with her cousins.  She loves to watch them run around and play.  It will be any day now that Lea is running around with them.  Thinking of her running around is exciting but it also breaks my heart.  Little Lea is growing up WAY too fast!

Every night we go through the same routine to get Lea ready for bed.  After her bath, which she LOVES, she gets a little massage with lotion and then has some time to crawl around a play before getting her jammies on.  After a few minutes of playing, we usually read a book while laying on the floor.  Well, last night we got home pretty late so we skipped her bath and play time.  After I got Lea's jammies on her,  I stepped out of the room for a second.  When I returned, Lea had crawled over to her books and was holding Goodnight Moon as if to say, "Don't forget my bedtime story mommy!"  It was adorable. :)

I actually don't have a new picture of Lea and myself for Mom n Me Monday... I know!  It's terrible!  I promise I will have one (several, actually) by next Monday, though.  Until then, here's a picture of Lea with two of her cousins...

And here's Lea chillin' in her new shades at the pottery festival.

And, since I just realized that she's not smiling in either of those pictures, here's a picture of her beautiful smile (showing off her new crawling skills!).