Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Keegan at 10 months


Last week you turned 10 months old. Wow! I cannot believe how fast you are growing up. I realize that our job as parents is to guide you along the way as much as we can in order to prepare you for becoming you own person, but I just wish it would slow down a bit. Didn't you come with a pause button?

You are so physically active. I remember you being very much so in my belly, but I think it is amusing to see that translate to out here in the open as well. You are always moving, exploring, and getting into everything. You love to crawl around, but it almost seems like you are not satisfied with crawling and wish you could walk. I promise that it will be soon. You like to pull up on furniture and reach for as much as you can. You also love to bounce to music while pulled up and will really groove! Your body is always wiggling and moving around, I hope you stay active your whole life!

You are an amazing eater and will eat almost anything we put in front of you. You have not been a huge fan of bananas or olives, but other than those two things, you eat whatever we eat just in smaller form. You would think you wouldn't be a huge fan of chewing things with just two little teeth, but you manage to chew an awful lot...or you will just stuff it all into your mouth and hope it isn't too much for you to manage! You really like pasta, bread, green beans, and fruit. But I don't know that anything is your favorite yet. You certainly enjoyed all of the Christmas food we had and I think you have been eating as much if not more than your sister.

You have really started looking at and enjoying books recently. You will babble when you see a book you like or shriek with happiness if you like the picture. You love the touch and feel books, especially the pages with animals. You also enjoy stuffed animals, dolls, and any toy that makes noise. Yesterday you chased the big red ball around the house a bit. You love messing with anything MacKenzie is playing with and will lurch for any electronics that are around.

You are a sleepy baby! If we let you, you will sleep from 8:30 to 8:30 and will take two solid 2-3 hour naps. Many days you don't get quite that much. You are so easy to put to sleep too, you will fuss for about 20 seconds then lay on your tummy, suck on your fingers, and pass out. Sometimes you wake up for a bit and fuss, but we know unless you are getting really upset to just let you sleep some more. You seem to be enjoying sharing a room with your sister and she loves to throw books and stuffed animals in your crib when you two are awake in the morning. I am glad you find delight in that.

You are laughing, squealing, and babbling more each day. It seems like you are starting to wave bye bye and you understand the signs for milk and more. Sometimes you do the sign for milk, but we aren't as consistent as we should be. You definitely say Mama and Dada and it seems at the end of our prayers (at meals and bed time) that you will say "Ay-ay", but we aren't sure if it is a definite word or not. You also seem to be getting the hang of putting your hands above your head for "Yay!". You love bath time with sissy and Daddy and you love to be tickled and snuggled. You are also getting in the habit of playing with and chasing MacKenzie so it will be nice to see how you two get along in years to come.

We love you Keegan Joy. You are an amazing and unique little girl who brings much happiness to our lives.
Mommy and Daddy

Chocolate Cake Taste Test

This taste test had been a brainchild of mine for some time. It sounded like a really good idea at first...but we were way wrong about it being a good idea...it was a very painful and overwhelming idea! I will explain how later.

Matt and his sister LOVE chocolate cake. When she was in Texas this past October around her birthday, we invited her down to celebrate by having a taste test of some of our favorite Chocolate cakes. Additionally we had wanted to try one of the chocolate cakes in town that we hadn't before and figured this might be a good time to do so. We chose three fancy places and one normal place that we knew had good chocolate cake as a "control". We had fancy score sheets and I made sure they didn't know where each slice was from so we could control as many variables as possible.

I will start with the worst...and boy was it bad.

We had heard amazing things about The Chocolate Bar here in Houston. They had been written up in several magazines for having wonderful chocolate desserts. Matt went down and asked for a slice for the most popular chocolate cake they had.

The scores for this ranged from 19 to 12 on a 30 point range. The icing was flat, the taste was "eh", and I wrote that "it left me wanting more from the cake, not more bites of cake". This was a really dry piece of cake too and we definitely expected more from a $11 piece of cake.

The next best (and nowhere near as bad as the previous) was the cake from Cheddar's. This was our control cake and we knew it would be good.

This cake exactly served it's purpose. It is a decent cake and one that you could see your mom or grandma serving to you. It is spongy, the icing and cake complement each other, and as Matt said it is "good, but not exceptional". It certainly knocked the socks of the previous cake with scores ranging from 18 to 26 and was nicely priced at around $6. It also gets brownie points (which is odd because it is chocolate cake) for being accessible in many places and for being served with ice cream.

The next two were a bit of a toss up. One we all decided was better as Chocolate CAKE, the other was better as a Chocolate DESSERT.

For the better cake we chose Taste of Texas.

This cake is amazing...as you can see in the picture there are Chocolate Straws that are usually acting as "flying buttresses" to hold the cake up on the plate. It tastes like cake, it is soft and moist, it has quality chocolate in that there are hints of fruity flavors, it has a good icing to cake ratio and the icing is good in and of itself. There was depth of flavor in the cake and you felt satisfied in looking for a good chocolate cake. The scores for this one were 28, 28, and 29. This cake puts you back almost $13.

The better of the desserts though was The Palm.

It is almost difficult to describe the cake from The Palm. The cake is so soft and the layers between cake and icing so thin that it really melds together. This is definitely a dark chocolate flavor so if you are not a dark chocolate fan, beware. A good amount of icing is concentrated on top which made it loose points with Matt and his sister because they like a lot of icing and they want it distributed through the cake. I am not as big of a fan of icing so it got extra points for this with me. This cake is so rich, so soft, and so intense that it almost hurts. Beware if you are prone to migraines triggered by chocolate...just smelling this cake could throw you overboard. McKay killed this one's ratings by giving it a 21 and Matt and I gave it a 26 and a 29 respectively. This one does cost you are pretty penny at $17.

All in all, if you had to ask us which one was best we would have to clarify what you are looking for...a crazy intense chocolate dessert points to The Palm. A really good piece of chocolate cake would mean a trip to Taste Of Texas. Either way...stay far, far away from The Chocolate Bar.

Why was this a bad idea you ask...this was way too much chocolate cake even for the three of us and we barely made a dent in it. All three of us felt very off the next day from trying bite after bite of our favorites. We needed at least three more people tasting with us and a little more self control. I am sure there are more good cakes to taste in Houston though, so I will keep you posted if we try again!

Friday, December 23, 2011

The Real Santa

Matt and I have been discussing a lot about the "Santa issue" in our house. We see many sides with whether to introduce him to the kids or not...we still have another year to finalize our stance because as far as MacKenzie is concerned, he is just a nice man (or woman) who gives her candy canes.

This post is not about us fleshing out our Christmas traditions so much as it is, for us, who Santa really should be in our lives...

Today my beloved Nana was doing some last minute shopping at her favorite store Palais Royal (she loves Hallmark too, maybe more so). She wanted to get some little gifts for the caretakers at her assisted living and extra items for her loved ones that she always spoils and dotes on throughout the year. As she was puttering around the store she came across a very nice sweater and one that she very much would have liked for herself. She saw no indication that it was included in any of the store sales so she added it to her items telling herself that she would only purchase it depending on how much her total was for the gifts for the other people in her life. When she was ready to checkout she told her checker that she wanted to see her grand total before she included the sweater in her purchases. A woman that was checking out next to her, but was almost done commented that she wanted to check the price of the sweater as well. My Nana obliged and carefully watched her total. As her transaction was complete, she didn't notice the sweater anywhere, but her checker handed her two bags. The items she had purchased was in one...and the sweater...purchased by the other woman for my grandmother was in the other! The checker next to her said the woman purchased it for my grandmother as part of her total so my grandmother could have something for herself too. Of course my grandmother burst into tears, the checker burst into tears, several other customers in line got weepy, and my uncle who had come into get my grandmother was moved by the generosity and compassion exhibited.

This is the Santa that we want to instill in our daughters hearts. We needed a bit of a reminder of it ourselves. Thank you to whoever that woman at the Palais Royal on Kingwood Drive is. Thank you for showing a bit of love to my Nana who deserves every bit of it.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Christmas Pictures

We took some pictures of the girls over the Thanksgiving break for our Christmas cards, we got better pictures of the girls separately than we did together, but wanted the together pictures for the cards. So you guys get to enjoy the individual pictures as a "preview".

Such a serious little Santa!

MacKenzie loves her reindeer

What a good little present...

...that sits under the tree!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Many Thanks

Our family has so much to be thankful for...our jobs, our home, an abundance of food, clothing, and entertainment. We have good family and good friends that we can rely on to meet our needs. We have the ability to lead and serve others. We have been blessed with good health. We live in a great country that allows us so many freedoms- freedom to work towards our goals and to achieve them, freedom to pursue happiness, freedom to live our lives in the way that we find pleasing, freedom to worship as we wish, openly and with others.

We have our wonderful family...

Our MacKenzie Grace who is so amazingly brilliant that it astounds me to think about how smart she is and what I can teach her and learn with her next...

Our Keegan Joy who is so amazingly passionate and has such feeling with the capabilities to express those feelings already...

That they have each other as sisters and will be able to always grow up with the closest of friends in each other and they can take comfort in their complementary natures...

Our Dada and my Mattie who takes care of us in the best ways he knows how and works hard everyday to achieve greatness...

We are so thankful, grateful, and humbled by what has been brought into our lives.

Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Keegan at 8 and 9 months


I feel terrible that I never got around to writing your 8 month post. While I have neglected your individual posts, I have not been neglecting you in the least and that is what is important right? I love you so much and cannot believe how quickly you are growing. It seems like you are growing up even faster than MacKenzie. I am not sure if you are trying to catch up to her or if that is just you and your personality (or maybe both), but either way I sure do wish life had a pause button!

You are eating like a champ, taking two full meals a day and sometimes a little snack too. You are eating table food most meals and if you eat something "baby-ish" it is us feeding you applesauce. You love to feed yourself and grab handfuls of raisins, cheerios, green beans, peas, corn, rice or anything else we put in front of you. This past weekend we gave you some of your sister's favorite food- Mac and Cheese! I think you love it even more than she does, which Mommy is very thankful because Mac and Cheese, sausage, and canned veggies are one of her stand by meals. You will nurse or take a bottle of pumped milk 4 to 5 times a day. Mommy is making plenty of milk for you along with a bit for the freezer and some for the milk bank. She is trying to finish up pumping for her last batch to send off in the next week or so. Thank you for all your help with that and for being so willing to share!

Your sleeping is long and consistent. Crystal loves watching you on her days because you sleep most of the time because we have to wake you up so early. You are barely dropping your evening nap and will still lay down for 20 minutes or so some evenings. This is on top of a 1-2 hour morning and 2-3 hour afternoon nap. You sleep soundly, on your tummy with your middle and ring finger in your mouth or close to your face. You like to be covered up, but have no preference for blankie or stuffed animal (which Mommy likes and will try to keep it that way). You have been sharing a room with your big sister for quite some time at night and that is going really well. You were a bit fussy the other night and we heard MacKenzie say over the monitor "No, no Nee-nan, Sleeeeep". There are many times that she will read to you or interact with you in the morning before we get you out of bed. I love that you two can happily share a room right now. Of course we let you nap separately because you are not in sync that way yet.

You are so active and so advanced physically. You had been wiggling yourself around the room quite well and were getting up on hands and knees and rocking for weeks. Finally, about three weeks ago, you got up and started really moving with a purpose. Now you are definitely crawling and moving around and being very independent. You will often lurch away from us so you can go explore your surroundings. You have also (this weekend at exactly 9 months) began officially pulling up on things. You had been trying very hard and would make your body into a bridge before, but now you will pull up on your crib or on the couch. I am sure you will be cruising very soon and may even be getting close to steps. You are starting to take interest in books, love to laugh and giggle when tickled or when we make funny faces, and love to bob to music.

You had a doctor visit on Friday and she said everything looked great. You weighed 19 pounds 4 ounces and were 28 inches long. That is in the mid 60 percentile for both. So taller and bigger than most your age, but not too tall or big. It has been fun picking out clothes for you that we think "look" like you. Our girlie clothing collection is growing! You officially said "Mama" this week. You were in despair that I walked away from you and let out a cry and a sad and pathetic "mama" as I walked away. You will still babble "Dadadadada", but we haven't decided if that "counts" or not. You are also consistently making the sign for "Milk" and will get excited if you are hungry and I make the sign for milk.

Thank you for not one, but the past two months. I appreciate you for who you are and how you fit into our family. I love everything about you and hope you feel it every day!


Halloween 2011

This Halloween year went much like last years (except with double the children). We went to our church fall festival to play and hang out with friends for a few years. I love that they work hard to have an area with games and bounce houses for smaller children like MacKenzie (and next year Keegan too). MacKenzie loved trying to throw beanbags into various areas to win candy ("tan-dy") and once she had gotten two or three pieces she was more than happy to stop. She bounced like a wild animal in the bounce house, so much so that her unbuckled overalls fell to the ground so she took them all the way off and bounced with shirt and diaper only!

We also joined the Faulkners and some of our other friends for Halloween at their house. We all brought food to go along with Chili and enjoyed passing out candy to neighborhood children. Da-da got there a bit late so we were unable to trick or treat with MacKenzie's friends, but we figured this wouldn't be a problem. We made our way to the first house and she did fine saying thank you. At the next house all heck broke loose. There was nothing scary about the house and they were sitting by the sidewalk so she did not have to walk far so we are still unable to figure out why the massive meltdown. I like to say that she got one piece of candy for both hands and felt that was sufficient. The girls both dressed up as ballerinas because we had the outfits on hand.

We were also able to head over to the pumpkin patch this year near our house for a few pumpkin pictures. Keegan did great, MacKenzie was distracted. You may recognize the dresses from their wedding dresses!

Wedding Weekend!

A few weekends ago we went to College Station to celebrate the wedding of Matt's brother Martin to our new sister-in-law/sister-in-law/sister-out-law Erin. I love the chance to be a part of a wedding and it was nice to be involved in a wedding that did not involve me serving and picking up dishes (although I appreciate the extra money when I work the events for my mom). We have enjoyed watching Martin change over the past few years and especially since he has met Erin and we enjoy Erin for who she is (and how much she loves and dotes on our girls). It was a joyous occasion and it was nice to be with family for a long weekend.

Matt was honored to stand with Martin as one of his groomsmen and we loved MacKenzie's debut as a flower girl. While she did not throw any petals, she walked down the aisle just as she was supposed to and then sat with Mommy for the duration of the ceremony. While MacKenzie was too tired and hungry to be willing to take extra pictures from the photographer, I am hoping that some were gotten during the actual ceremony. Keegan slept through the ceremony and was able to enjoy the reception after.

I loved Erin's attention to fall details and thought the outside setting was simply beautiful. The ceremony itself had several touching parts, especially in the vows, but maybe that is just the old softy in me :) Regardless, welcome to the family Erin. Best Wishes and Congratulations to you both!

Matt's School

Matt has long since wanted to earn his MBA. He feels that it is as necessary now for success and advancement in the work place as an undergraduate degree was 20 years ago. With more and more people entering the working field with undergrads and internships (which he was unable to do because of consistently working as a manager 30-40 hours a week...which isn't taken into consideration by many companies because it is fast food and for some reason does not count...but I digress) then he wanted something to give him an edge.

He mulled over which programs for months. With me going back to work, he kicked his mulling into high gear and made a very complete and thorough (how repetitive and redundant was that) spreadsheet comparing the programs in this area. Among considerations was reputability, price, class flexibility, and location. We even put the u.t. program here in Houston on the list (but ultimately had to veto for the same reason we vetoed A & M and Tulane...price). He narrowed the list down to his top three choices- University of St. Thomas, HBU, and University of Houston. Matt studied hard for his GMAT and was accepted and offered at least financial aid at all three schools. After more mulling he decided on...

HBU! He is all registered for the spring and will take 9 hours this spring and hopefully another 3 during the May mini-mester. The nights that he is gone for school will be a little lonely and sometimes stressful, but it makes me happy and proud to see how hard he is working for both himself and for our family. He is also excited to have an excuse to stretch his brain a little rather than continue to answer the mundane questions that I am sure he gets a thousand times or more at work.

Go Huskies!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

So behind

I am so far behind on the blogging world. I am sure anyone who stumbles upon reading this that actually knows me would understand why. I am one of the busiest people I know and friends frequently comment that I am the busiest person they know too! I love to be busy, I love to go and do, and interact, and serve, and be accomplishing things. That being said, I don't neccessarily feel like I bit off more than I can chew, I just think that I got a bite with a little bit of extra grissel in it so I am trying to chew it slowly so I don't spit it into my napkin!

Teaching has changed so much just in the year that I was away from it. I was recently asked if teaching is a hard job. My response was no, the teaching itself was not hard for me. The things that take place between 7:25 and 2:30 are challenging, but completely rewarding and worth it (most of the time). What makes teaching hard is all of the other stuff. Expect a very long post that addresses this later.

The girls are still amazing and doing such a great job in other's care. I am so proud of the little girls they are both becoming and treasure every minute that I get to have with them. I am very much looking forward to Thanksgiving break in a week and Christmas break shortly after that.

Matt has been very busy. He passed his GMAT with flying colors, was accepted to several MBA programs around Houston, and will be selecting one this week. I will wait until he makes the final decision to post about which one and if anyone is in need of a spreadsheet that covers all of the MBA options then let us know, his work was extremely thorough. If he maintains that diligence throughout his program then he should be on a very clear path for success!

I will hopefully find time to post a bit more in the coming two weeks. I have much to post about and the cutest pictures of the girls too.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

MacKenzie is 2!!!


At this point two years ago we were just winding down our evening saying goodbye to Auntie Crystal and Uncle Darren and trying to relax. You decided to tell us you were on your way in just a few short minutes from this moment! How funny that we are now winding down our evening from a party to celebrate your second year of life and to look forward to your third year (and we even said goodbye to Auntie Crystal again). Tomorrow you were born two years ago. You went from this teeny helpless little child who had no way of telling me exactly what she wanted to being this tall and amazingly capable young girl who is articulate, kind, and so smart! Two years ago the center of my world changed and I hope you know I completely revolve my life around you.

This past year has been amazing and I can only hope that you have another amazing year ahead of you. I hope all the wonderful things that happened to you and our family are multiplied by a million. I hope all of the new abilities you have and all of your wonderful skills that you have learned are gained another tenfold (or more). It has been so much fun to see who you have become and who you might be. I want to let you know that I believe that you can do anything and be anything that you want to be and I hope I remember to give you that freedom for you to grow.

In the past month you have started to pick up on things much quicker and can learn easily. You repeat many things that we say (which means we have to watch what we say more often) and will ask even more questions about the world around you. It is difficult to keep track of all the progress you have made in the last month, but I assure you that you astound us on a very frequent basis (multiple times a day). Auntie Crystal is so good about sharing so many of the funny things you do (playing with her cats and dog, fashioning your own sling to wear a stuffed animal in, feeding the ducks and walking all the way around the pond). Mommy's heart aches to spend all of this time with you again, but I am relishing the times we have together after my work and know we will be spending that time together again soon.

Some of the new skills you have developed or improved on is eating with your silverware (you insist on having silverware and will frequently manually put the food on the silverware and then put it in your mouth), your dancing has become even more elaborate (lots of hand waving and bouncing/rocking), swinging on a regular swing and sliding on your playset, wanting to walk in all of the stores we go to, you are working on dressing and undressing yourself, and you are getting better at remembering things we have done or are looking forward to doing.

Mommy had been preparing you for a dentist appointment yesterday. We practiced opening our mouth and saying Ahhhh and we talked about going to the dentist and how he would look at your teeth. We ended up having to cancel, but you woke up on Saturday asking about the dentist and you were upset when I had to tell you we weren't going. It was very new to me that you could remember something like that and knew that it should be on the correct day.

You also got your very first haircut (a barely trim) this past week. You did so well as you sat and watched your Elmo and got a little bit off the ends. It still all falls into your face, but it is a definite improvement in the back. Also, you were in your very first wedding. Your Uncle Marty got married to Erin and we are so excited for them. I will post more about your wedding duties, but I loved seeing you act so grownup at the wedding.

I know there are a million things I should be thinking about writing, but I cannot tell you enough how much I love you, how much I am proud of you, and how much you make my heart sing for the things you do and the person you are. I love you and I love the direction you are headed, I hope that you continue to be blessed as we are certainly blessed to have you in our lives.

I love you and Happy BIrthday!
Mommy and Daddy

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Milk Banking

Several people have wondered my process when collecting milk for the milk bank...so here it goes.

When I first started pumping with MacKenzie it had a purpose that had nothing to do with donating my milk. I had to provide milk for her when I was at work. Therefore, four weeks into her life I began pumping to build up milk and to make sure my body had the hang of things before it was needed. My body most definitely knew what to do and I soon had not enough milk, not some for extra, not a surplus, but an excess of milk. When all was said and done in June (and I stopped working) we had half of a large deep freeze full of milk. So I called the Mother's Milk Bank in Austin (somewhat at the prompting of my sister and some because I realized what a blessing it was and felt it should be passed along) to see what I could do to provide this milk to someone else.

The screening process was fairly simple, but detailed. They first screen you over the phone to make sure that there are no huge red flags that would immediately disqualify you from donating. At this point they tell you to continue pumping as any previous milk can still be donated and your first donation has to be 150 ounces for testing. The questions have a lot to do with any diseases that might pass through the milk and where you may have lived over the past couple of years. After you are pre qualified they send you a packet where you confirm most of the same questions and fill in your doctor and your child's doctor's information so they can confirm that you are of good health and that your child is gaining weight. You also have to get a blood draw which they pay for.

During this time you continue to pump (they need a lot of milk for those little babies). Once you are qualified you drop it off at your nearest drop off site and they send it to Austin to process it and distribute it as they see fit.

So as far as my actual pumping process goes...

Obviously when working I pump when I can to get as much milk for MacKenzie or Keegan and have a bit extra for banking. When I wasn't working this past spring however, this was my thinking...

As soon as she dropped her 7 or 8 a.m. feeding I continue to get up and pump the side she would have fed on. This would usually yield 8-12 ounces which is a lot of milk! When I get up to pump I make sure to have water because I am very thirsty and I make sure I am relatively comfortable because it can take anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes. I am also usually on my phone to some degree trolling around on the Internet.

After I pump I put the milk into labelled bags or the nifty little plastic containers from the milk bank. I usually put 5 to 6 ounces in the bags or 4 ounces in the containers. This spring I donated most milk and would just bank some for Keegan from time to time.

After this I place the milk into the regular freezer and wait for my stockpile to build. I also make note of what containers I put in the freezer for the milk bank so that I can give an approximate number of ounces because they need that...

Once the milk is in the freezer I hand wash my parts and I am done. From time to time I will boil them to make sure they are extra clean and to get rid of the film that gets on them...

The hardest part of the process is driving out to The Woodlands to lug all the milk and usually both kids into the hospital to drop off the milk. But it is so worth it! As of right now I have donated over 600 ounces from Keegan and I donated 450 ounces with MacKenzie. I am hoping to donate another 200 or so ounces, but I have to make sure my chubby monkey gets her milk too.

Please let me know if anyone out there wants more information on how to donate milk or who to contact for more information. I believe the Mother's Milk Bank in Austin is a wonderful organization and I am so happy to be apart of their great work!


MacKenzie at 23 months


I cannot believe you are already 23 months! I cannot even tell people your month age anymore, I have to say you are almost 2 and in just a month it will be that you are 2! I cannot even describe how quickly the past two years have gone by. Last year at this time I was placed on bed rest and we were anticipating your arrival each and every day!

You are absolutely brilliant and there is no other way to describe it. You know all of your uppercase letters (with mistakes allowed from time to time of course), you are learning your lowercase letters, you can count with assistance to 20, know most of your basic colors, know all of your basic shapes, and are learning more and more each day. You have begun to name friends by their names and will recognize more people that you are frequently around. We can teach you something and in a matter of minutes you will have picked it up. I find it incredible how quickly your mind works. We are working on your independence by giving you a choice or two of outfits, activities, and snacks or some meals in order to see more about what you like and how you think. We are also starting you on basic chores from time to time and you love to be so helpful with those.

You love to play blocks (especially with Daddy) and really enjoy being outside on the swing or slides now that we have cooler weather. One of your favorite things to play is with the money your great grandpa gave you. You like to dump it out, sort it, stack it up, identify every thing that it is in there. You also of course still love to read and some of your favorite books are Go, Dog Go (you will say some of the words if we stop at certain points in the book), Barnyard Dance, Click, Clack, Moo and anything to do with animals or Elmo. Elmo is definitely one of your favorite things, but you really like all of the Sesame Street characters. You love to go play with friends and are starting to actually interact with the other kids instead of playing near them. I think it is cute to watch what you enjoy doing and what you focus your attention on.

Your naps are sporadic and you will sometimes play quietly in your room for hours on end without taking a nap (but without asking to get out of your room either). I think you just need the wind down time regardless. You still love to sleep with your blankets, but I love to get you up and see you surrounded by books that you have been reading to yourself during nap or in the morning. Sometimes you talk or sing to yourself in your sleep and you hardly ever wake up mid night. In the morning Mommy will ask you what you dream about and you must think I am asking about what you drink because you say "Juice", "Milk", "Bubbles", and "water". Daddy is convinced you were actually dreaming about puppies the other day because you woke up talking about them. Daddy also said that he went to get you up one morning and Keegan was crying so you pulled your rocking chair in front of her crib and you were reading a book to her- so sweet. A not so sweet, but funny habit you have begun is climbing on top of your changing table and pulling out all of the wipes from the container and "trying" to change your diaper. I think you are just pretending, but you love to be up there.

Your favorite meals are breakfast and snack! You love eggs, pancakes, or oatmeal for breakfast and have acquired a deep fondness for peanut butter sandwiches. Sometimes I will ask you want to eat and you say "buht-er...bread" and I know what that means! You love to snack on multigrain cheerios and popcorn the most, but will eat most of anything in snack form. Your favorite veggie is broccoli, you love all fruit and unsweetened applesauce and you are slowly enjoying more foods. I think it is funny that you do not care for it as much the next day. I don't know why... You still drink a lot of milk and watered down juice to stay hydrated. You will eat a bit of sweets, but you love cookies and suckers the most.

We love you MacKenzie. Not a day goes by that Mommy and Daddy aren't amazed and overwhelmed by how much you touch our lives. I sincerely enjoy being with you and love all that you show me. Hope you have a great month ahead of you!

Mommy and Daddy

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Keegan's (late) 7 months!


What an amazing 7 (and a half) months it has been. You have grown up so much in the last month that I hardly know where to start. I guess I should start by apologizing for being so tardy with this post. I promise that I do not love you any less.

We will start with eating and sleeping habits. You are still sleeping great from 8:30 until 8:30 if we let you although some mornings you have to get up early to go to child care. I am so glad that we went ahead and put both you and your sister in the same room and hope you enjoy it while you are still young. There have been no issues and we just make sure that your naps are separate since they aren't at the same time or for the same length of time. You will usually take two bottles from your different sitters and then mommy will nurse you for 5-6 mini feeding sessions after she gets you after work. I suppose that is a bit of reverse cycling occurring, but Mommy makes less food in the afternoon anyways. You are also eating solids (pureed baby food) twice a day and will munch on some baby puffs or fruit in the mesh feeder if you need a little snack. You really liked the mixed roasted veggies Mommy made for you and I think you prefer food with a bit of texture in it. You have started to grab for the spoon or cups to try and take care of that yourself, but aren't quite coordinated enough. During meals if you aren't dozing we will put you in the high chair where you will try to feed yourself puffs or thawed frozen peas.

You are sitting up a lot on your own and have started reaching out for more things then putting yourself back into an upright sitting position. You love to look around and observe everything that is going on. You are also really starting to move around a lot and trying to wiggle yourself into where you want to go. After you get tired of wiggling too much though you will lay on your tummy and wave your arms and legs around like a beached whale "crying" until someone rescues you. You are such a mover though! You love to bounce and will jump up and down in an exersaucer or other jumper for babies. Daddy always talks about how "expressive" your feet are and it's true...they are always wiggling around and it seems to go with your move. It is hard for us to realize how tall you are because your legs are always bent or are in a mid kicking position.

You have your first tooth and the second wasn't far behind! You cut the bottom right (your right) tooth just before your "birthday" with minimal pain, but with a lot of sleeping. It is so cute to see that shiny white tooth poking through your big gummy smile. Hopefully that tooth will cause you to say some new sounds because if Mommy isn't careful your babble of "dadadadadadadadada" is going to turn into a legitimate "Da-Da" soon. You love to shriek and squeal as loud as you can and will laugh at almost anything. You love to catch MacKenzie's attention and to laugh at things she does, but will also laugh if anyone touches around your neck or blows raspberries into your sides. You also like to be startled by Mommy and will reward her with big smiles when playing "Peek-a-boo". You have been very clingy lately, but only as long as someone is around...it doesn't matter who, it just needs to be someone! You are also sharing a big girl bath with Sissy so it has been fun for Dada to have more interaction time with you there.

We are so happy and thankful for the last month Keegan. We love watching you grow and seeing what you will do next. We are completely devoted to you and hope you realize how much you are loved.

Mommy and Daddy

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


I'm still here. We are all still alive. Hopefully things will get leveled out so that I can write real updates soon. I hope all is well with everyone out there, I know you miss all my witty and insightful writing!

I have so many student stories to tell that I might have to add more teacher writing days!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011