Friday, September 30, 2016

Goodbye September

I cannot believe this is the last day of September!! Where is the time going y'all? October is one of my favorite months and I think we're going to kick off the first day by visiting a pumpkin patch tomorrow! I'm looking forward to it!
We had a fun day today. We met up with some friends at a park in Bentonville. I've actually never been to it before and apparently I was missing out because I saw SO many people there that I knew. We got there around 11:30 and didn't leave until 2:00. It was a lot of fun and we were all worn out by the time we got home.
After naps it was time for dinner so we grabbed a quick bite to eat at Chuy's then had a Friday night milkshake after! The boys are in bed so Scott and I are about to binge on The Americans. My idea of a fun Friday night!!
I'll leave you with this. The happiest little squirt in the whole world! Oh how I love this precious boy. He couldn't get any sweeter!!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, September 27, 2016


The other night the kids were in bed and Scott and I were in our designated spots on our sofas. I was on my phone typing away and Scott looked at me and said "you sleep training babies over there?" Haha! It really tickled me because yes, the answer was yes. I like helping Mommas and giving them advice on how to get their babies on a schedule and sleeping good at night!
Let's talk swaddling!!

"Swaddling a baby under three months of age is like a miracle sleep trick but they will only respond to it if it is done exactly correctly and is tight in the right will make the difference between 2-3 hours of sleep in a row and 6-10 hours of sleep in a row." --Moms On Call

I learned a lot about swaddling with Bennett. I swaddled Campbell but I also didn't have any sort of routine or schedule with him until he was 10 weeks old so those first few weeks were just a little different with Campbell. The swaddle played a bigger part in our lives this time around since I started Babywise right away.
At first Bennett did not like to be swaddled. He grunted and fought it and those noises kept me up so I thought "alright fine we just won't do the swaddle and that will be nice because we won't ever have to mess with the pain of transitioning out of the swaddle." But he wasn't sleeping long stretches like I knew he was capable of doing so I reached out to a sleep consultant that I know and she instructed me to swaddle him back up! So I did. And the first night I got him swaddled correctly he slept all night for the very first time.
I realized I wasn't getting Bennett swaddled tight enough (even though I thought I was because it seemed tight) so he was able to grunt and work his way out. The trick was making sure his hands were relaxed and down by his side before wrapping him up. I used the Aden + Anais Easy Swaddle and/or the Halo Swaddle. I took my time with it (because this was the difference in good sleep and not good sleep) and made sure to get that first flap tucked over and under that left arm as tight as I could. I finished wrapping my little burrito up then I zipped the woombi swaddle over him to make sure he couldn't move those arms. You can laugh (because we certainly did) but it worked! Bennett LOVED it and slept so soundly from that point forward. It's crazy how something as easy as getting your baby swaddled correctly can make that much of a difference but it can.

When it came to dropping the swaddle I just did it cold turkey. I figured it was easier to do it all at once vs. having him get used to a bunch of new transitions every few days or weeks. A lot of people try dropping it for naps first but it's definitely easier to drop it at night first. They get in a much deeper sleep at night and it's easier for them to find their comfy spot. The first night for us was not good. The second night Bennett slept perfectly! I very slowly transitioned Campbell out of his swaddle and I much prefer just dropping it cold turkey. It took just one night with Bennett and we were done with it vs months of trying to drop it with Campbell.

So there's my swaddling tips! Most of it I just learned from reading Mom's On Call so if you want to learn more I suggest reading that book. Like I've said before, it has a lot of really great helpful information.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Campbell | 2.5

Campbell is 2.5 years old today! I wanted to post a little update on him for my records :)

Weight: 28 pounds.

Sleep: Campbell's day starts at 7:00 AM and ends at 8:00 PM. He takes one nap a day around 1:30-2:00 and sleeps for about 2 hours. Campbell sleeps in his big boy bed and sleeps perfectly in it!

Eat: Ugh Campbell is the worst eater ever. Occasionally he'll shock us by eating really great but that's rare. His typical menu consists of: fruit loops, applesauce, yogurt, PB&J, pasta (seasoned with olive oil and butter only), peas, sweet potato fries, tomatoes, orange juice, quiche, carrots, hashbrown casserole, granola bars, cheese (but only if it's shredded), cheese quesadilla, corn dogs and any and all fruit. He would prefer to just eat the trail mix I make him (goldfish, fruit loops, craisins, and yogurt melts) for every meal. That's his favorite.

Clothes: Campbell wears size 12-18 month shorts and pants, size 18-24 month and/or 2T tops, and size 2T Kickee Pants pajamas. He wears size 6 or 7 shoes.

Favorite Toys: Campbell still loves stacking. Any kind of stacking toy is his go-to but his favorite thing to stack is his blocks. He has really gotten into puzzles lately. Campbell loves lego duplos, trains, and tools. He also enjoys lining his toys up in a long straight line.
Favorite Books: Love Monster, The Three Little Pigs, and Little Blue Truck Saves The Day.

Favorite TV Shows: Sheriff Callie, Mickey Mouse, PJ Masks, Goldie and Bear, and Little Einsteins.

Big Brother Role: I tell Campbell all the time that he is the best and sweetest big brother! He is so good to Bennett. The first thing he does every morning is walk up to Bennett and give him a big kiss on his head. He likes to take baths with Bennett and whenever Bennett is laying on the floor Campbell lays right down beside him. He doesn't mind at all that Bennett has taken some of the attention away from him because Campbell adores Bennett and is so glad to have him be a part of our family now! Campbell calls Bennett "Boo." We have no idea where that came from but we love it so we call Bennett "Boo" now too!
All About Campbell: Campbell is still such a sweet little boy. He goes to Mothers Day Out twice a week and he absolutely loves it. They are his favorite days for sure. He really loves to read books especially before bedtime. It's always "one more book?!" and I almost always can't resist. Campbell is a cuddler and when we're sitting on the couch or lounging in bed he'll look at you and say "snuggle?" Campbell is in the stage of testing boundaries and it can be frustrating but we also know it's just him learning right from wrong. Because of this, he probably says "I sorry Ma!" about 182 times a day. He is slowly becoming less baby and so much more of a big boy now. I sometimes watch in amazement at how much he's grown up just in these last few months. Everything about him is so different. I love the little boy he's growing up to be and I hope he is always this sweet and kind. Campbell makes me so proud in so many ways and being his Mommy is the best thing in the world.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Bennett's Newborn Photos

I'm about 4 months behind on posting these but better late than never! Here are a few of Bennett's newborn photos taken by the ever so talented Bobbie Yocum of Bobbie Yocum Photography. I'm so in love with how these turned out. I cried when I saw them for the first time. My hope was to get just one really good family photo but my expectations were low because I know firsthand how hard it is to photograph a toddler. It was a little crazy but Bobbie just kept snapping and low and behold we got some great family shots! I knew the ones of Bennett would be beautiful. I love the colors and outfits she chose for him to wear. I couldn't be more pleased! It was hard to narrow down (if you count 17 photos as narrowing down!!) my favorites because I loved them all so much but here they are. 

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Blossom and Grow

I feel like I'm playing catch up on sharing some photos on here but I absolutely couldn't leave this one out since it is definitely in the top 5 of my all time favorite photos of Campbell. He was doing his daily stacking one morning and I grabbed the camera real fast and snapped just this one pic and fell in love. I love the lighting, the vibrance and that I was able to capture my little guy doing what he loves most.
Campbell will officially be 2.5 next week and a part of me just can't believe it. He's at such a fun age right now and I catch myself just starring in awe of his cuteness. He's changed so much just in the last few weeks and is seeming so much more boy and so much less baby. I was looking at his feet just yesterday and said to him "when did you get man feet?" Ahh! A part of me wants to curl up and cry that he's growing up on me. However, watching him (and his brother!) blossom and grow is my favorite thing ever.
I am snuggling and cuddling with this sweet peanut a whole extra lot today. Scott and I got word early this morning that a friend of ours lost their little boy tragically last night. He was born just a few weeks after Campbell and I have been sick to my stomach all day long. I absolutely cannot imagine, nor do I want to, the pain they are in right now. All I know to do is pray for them. Squeeze your babies tight mommas.

Monday, September 19, 2016

The Second Time Around

I officially have an obsession with wearing my baby. I've always loved it but each time I wear Bennett I love it more and more. I wish I had done this with Campbell because it sure does make things easier sometimes. It makes me wonder if he would have been less fussy too. I think the trick is finding what type of baby wearing gear you like and for me, I love Solly Baby. They released their new fall line last week and I ordered a couple more wraps. They came in the mail today and I'm obsessed with the colors and can't wait to break them in!!
I shared this photo on my Instagram (@kara2lou) a few weeks ago but I wanted to put it on here as well since this little space is like my diary....that I let everyone read ha! I just absolutely love this photo that Scott captured of us one afternoon. My tiny little nugget all snuggled into me just melts my heart. I hope that one day Bennett loves this photo as much as I do. I'm sure he'll find it so hard to believe that he was ever so small that I could wear him around like this!!
I'm sure I'll find it hard to believe one day as well. But let's not think about that. Because this stage of life I'm in right now is the best. Life is crazy and most nights I don't get to crawl in bed until after 11:00 because it's basically impossible to do anything during the day but keep my eyes on my kiddos. That's okay though. Sleep is less important than it used to be and I'm learning to just not worry about all of the stuff on my to-do list. Life moves slow and the day to day is a little ordinary at times but it's exactly how I want it to be right now. Something about being a second time mom has changed me. Everyone told me that it's so much better the second time around (unless you have a fussy baby I guess!!) and I totally get it. You feel so confident in everything you do and it's not such a huge life adjustment like it was the first time. You just add another little person into your family and you get to enjoy their precious baby-ness while you also get to enjoy your funny toddler who makes you laugh and smile daily. It's just the best. Everyone tells me it just keeps getting better and I can see that. But I sure do love this stage and I'm soaking it up as much as I can.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Rolling Over

I feel like everyone is ready for fall and I'm still holding onto summer. I don't want it to end!!! I love fall but summer is my jam. It has been super rainy here in NWA today which has made it a little cooler than usual and it has given me a little bit of fall fever. I still want a few more weeks of summer though.
Bennett learned how to roll over this week! He did it on September 14 which just so happens to be the one year anniversary of the day I found out I was pregnant with him! I thought it was pretty sweet and special that he saved one of the bigger milestones for that particular day. I was kind of surprised that he rolled over to be honest considering how tiny he is. Bennett is an entire pound smaller than Campbell was at his age! I didn't think it could get much smaller than baby Campbell. While I was in Little Rock last weekend my mom pulled out my baby book and I was almost the same weight as Bennett at my 4 month appointment which I thought was interesting. Our boys definitely got my genes in the weight department and not Scotts. Scott was a chunk and had rolls for days!!! I wish my boys could pick up at least one of those rolls. Campbell still has the smallest waist. His shorts are all size 12-18 months and he's just a few days shy of being 2.5!!
Once Scott and I put the boys to bed we're going to binge on The Americans (our new show--so good y'all) and make 'slutty cheesecake bars.' We saw the recipe on one of those Facebook videos and drooled while we watched so tonight we're baking! It should be a fun and highly caloric evening. I'm super looking forward to it.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

How I Schedule My Babies

Okay so let's talk sleep! I've already shared why I like having my babies on a schedule so today I'll share how I do it.
I chose to use the Babywise schedule for a number of reasons but mostly because their schedule and method allows for so much flexibility. After using it with both of my boys, I've learned the Babywise schedule follows their own particular sleep needs and patterns the most naturally. If you're wanting to implement Babywise you definitely need to read the book to understand how it works but I'll give you the cliffs notes version.
The absolute most important thing to know about Babywise is that their first and last feedings of the day have to be at the exact same time. There should be zero flexibility here. This is THE key to Babywise working. The rest of the day they eat every 2.5-3 hours and as they get older they can go a little longer between feedings. Your routine goes eat, wake, sleep. When Bennett wakes up I feed him before I do anything else. Once he's done eating I change his diaper, we have awake time, and when he starts giving me his sleepy cues I lay him down for his nap (sleepy but awake--no rocking). We repeat this all day. Over time they will begin to naturally stretch their sleep out all night long if you do eat, wake, sleep every 2.5-3 hours and make sure the first and last feedings of the day are consistently at the exact same time every single day. I cannot repeat that last part enough.
Another tool I use is the Moms On Call book. I don't follow their schedule but I do follow all of their basic sleeping principles. They have a lot of helpful tips and things you need to do in order to create the perfect sleeping environment for your baby whereas Babywise can be a little vague in that area. A lot of it is common sense (swaddle, loud white noise, blackout curtains, etc) but some of it is very helpful information that I never would have thought of and a lot of times they'll give you the science behind why you should do it. I really love the Moms On Call book because they provide a lot of helpful insight.
Whatever method you choose to do, the one thing you MUST do is be consistent. If you aren't consistent it won't work. Also, don't get discouraged. If you're doing everything your supposed to do and your baby starts sleeping better for a week then suddenly regresses, don't give up! This is totally normal. When Bennett was 6 weeks old I got SO frustrated because he went from waking once a night back to waking up twice. It will make you want to throw your hands up and say "this isn't working!!!" but don't. Just stay consistent with everything you're doing and before you know it your baby will start sleeping all night and you'll start to feel like a human again instead of a zombie!!

Next week I'll talk about swaddles. Campbell was a little easier with the swaddle but Bennett needed it and I learned this time around how important the right swaddle is. The first night I got Bennett swaddled correctly was the first night he slept all night long. Stay tuned for that next week!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

(Semi) Wordless Wednesday

I have so many photos on my phone that I've been wanting to share on here so I thought a semi Wordless Wednesday would be the best way to do it!!
 Campbell still LOVES stacking. This has been going on for close to 1.5 years now. This might be my favorite thing Campbell does. I love, love watching him stack. I never want him to grow tired of it.
 My cutie on the cutest play mat ever made.
 Can't go to bed without picking out a "few" lovies first.
 My boys after church one Sunday.
 Wherever they are, Ivy is never too far away.
 Tell me this big smile didn't put a smile on your face.
 Trying on some of our new fall clothes! Boden is turning out some seriously cute duds this fall. And on a side note, I had to call their customer service about a check out problem I was having and I got to speak to a lady with a British accent which totally made my day.
 Campbell found a new and very comfy way to ride in the stroller after hanging out at the pool one day!!
 This little stinker is getting too wiggly for his swing. I looked over one day to see him basically hanging out of the thing!!
I walked in my dining room last week, saw this, and gasped! Madison has never done this before and I don't know what made her think she could get on top of our dining room table to get her daily morning tan but I reminded her that it was only to be done on the rug. But not before I took a picture of course!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Back Where I Come From

Hey all! I was a little under the weather yesterday and pretty much laid in bed all day. I had a plugged duct that was in the beginning stages of mastitis and it. was. awful. I woke up feeling horrible and at one point while I was trying to work it out, I fainted!! It was so painful that it literally made me pass out. The last thing I remember was feeling light headed so I started reaching to turn my pump off and the next thing I knew I woke up folded over on the floor with my head ringing. I'm not kidding when I say that my first hazy thought was "did my milk spill everywhere?" because #liquidgold
I called Scott to tell him what happened and he told me later that I sounded completely out of it but thankfully he got home quickly and I was able to just rest the remainder of the day. My doctor prescribed me some medicine and I woke up this morning feeling SO much better. Umm...I hope I never experience that again. I never had anything like that happen with Campbell so I was honestly kind of surprised that it happened to me. I don't know why. I guess I just figured maybe I wasn't prone to stuff like that. Now I'm worried it will happen again which terrifies me because yikes it's extremely painful. Obviously. I passed out.
Before my dramatic Monday took place, I spent the previous few days at my parents house in Little Rock. This was my Sunday morning view and I soaked it up. It was so pretty and peaceful and the weather was absolutely perfect. Scott put the icing on the cake by going to Krispy Kreme and getting some donuts because I mentioned that I was craving one (or two).
The reason we went south was for a family reunion in my hometown. I haven't been back to my hometown in over 5 years and I didn't really even actually go into the town. My family lives right on the outskirts so we popped in and popped out. I was hoping to have time to drive around since it's been so long but with the two boys and their naps/sleeping we just didn't have time.
The rest of our weekend was spent at my parents house swimming! Bennett just hung out in his chair and watched. Cutie. It was a quick weekend and so much of our time was spent on the road. We had talked about taking a last minute trip to Destin and leaving to go this Saturday. But after that drive, I changed my mind. The boys did great but ugh. I just don't like being in a car for that long!! Time to come up with family vacation plan B.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Bennett | 4 Months Old

Weight: Bennett had his 4 month appointment yesterday and he weighed 11 pounds, 9 ounces which puts him in the 1st percentile!

Height: 24.61 inches, 26%!
Sleep: Bennett sleeps hard for 12 straight hours every night! 7:00 PM-7:00 AM. He takes three naps a day.

Eat: I'm still exclusively breastfeeding and Bennett eats 5 times a day. He's getting faster and faster at eating. We're down to 5-6 minutes max!!

Clothes: All 0-3 month clothes. Kickee Pants are 0-3 months although we're probably ready to go to the next size. Size newborn Freshly Picked Moccs! A few newborn outfits still fit.
Diapers: Size 2 Pampers Swaddlers and Size 3 Pampers Baby Dry Overnight Diapers.

Likes: Smiling, baths, being outside, cuddling, watching big brother play.

Dislikes: Clothes going over his head. When he suddenly realizes he's super tired and ready for his nap.
Milestones: Bennett can bear weight on his legs now. He brings his hands together and it's sooo cute! Bennett coo's when you talk to him and reaches for his monkeys dangling over his bouncy chair. He stretched his sleep out to 12 straight hours and also dropped his swaddle. He likes to sleep on his side now that he's not swaddled.

Month Four: Bennett experienced his first sickness this month. My poor little guy got diagnosed with croup a few weeks ago. It was so sad but he handled it like a champ. He was a little fussy at times (which is SO unlike him) but he slept great all night. Thankfully it wasn't a very bad case and he recovered pretty quickly thanks to Vicks, the humidifier, and lots of Momma cuddles.
All About Bennett: Bennett is still just as sweet as ever! He's the smiliest baby and continues to be just as easy as can be.....and we're still just amazed by it! My little squirt makes me so happy thanks to his precious demeanor and I love for him to sit in my lap and cuddle any chance I get. I cannot believe Bennett has been with us for four months now. It has truly just flown by. I love my little angel and I feel like whenever I look back on this time, I'll always remember it as Bennett sitting in my lap while we watch Campbell play. It doesn't seem like much but it sure does make me happy!