August 26, 2010

Mario Brothers, Bottles, and Blog Friends

So am I the last person in the world to find out that you can download old Nintendo games on the Wii?
We had dinner with some friends the other night and this came up somehow. I seriously wanted to run home right then to see if it was really possible. So of course, it was the first order of business when we got home. And for only 5 bucks, I am now taking a stroll down memory lane getting entirely too excited playing Super Mario Brothers 3! I was actually a little sad to leave for LA because I'm stuck on level 4. Some of the old tricks are coming back to me, and I feel so triumphant every time I remember where to find a free man or coin heaven! Which makes me think...how did we know all of that stuff back then? It wasn't like we could look up secrets on the internet...so how did some kid discover how to warp worlds, and then how did the word spread? Kind of funny when I think back on it.  Good times. :)

So bottle feeding. Yeah, we still haven't had any luck. This is where we're at on that: Patrick is the one to try to feed him most of the time. I've tried too but he's definitely not having it from me. I've heard the 2nd feeding of the day is best, so we tried that but it doesn't seem to make much difference. So far we've used Medela, Avent, Playtex, and Breastform bottles with no luck. I just bought some Soothie ones hoping they might work since he likes that kind of pacifier. I feel like we basically waited too long to introduce the bottle, and that's why we're having difficulties. Anyone else have any luck introducing a bottle, especially this late in the game?

And finally, I love meeting up with other bloggers. A few weeks ago when I was in Dallas I was able to meet up with Ashley from SheShe Made, and her adorable daughter Ava. We forgot to take a picture but it was so much fun, and Ava was so funny! She is such a sweetie and called Manny Elmo or E-mo....love it! Ashley, I can't wait to do it again - hopefully soon - and we'll definitely get a picture next time! :)

And just a few days ago I got to meet up with Sarah from Adventures in Ava-land again. I'd met Sarah once before, but this was the first time I got to meet her sweet Ava....what a fun little girl!
We had a great time hanging out and talking, and Ava did a good job of keeping us entertained. It was so fun Sarah and I look forward to doing it again!

August 25, 2010

Wordless Wednesday


August 24, 2010

{Month 3} Must-Haves

I'm back with all of our favorite things for the month! In case you missed months 1 & 2, you can check them out here. We're still enjoying many of the same things, and have some important additions to the list.
I mistakenly left this off the earlier months, but I just wanted to mention how much I love our Diaper Champ! It keeps the stinky smell in great, and I love that we can use the same trash bags in it that we use in our kitchen trash can. It's also very simple to change out bags - another plus.
We are on the go a lot, so we go through these pretty quickly. They are great because they really do keep the smell in, so I don't feel guilty throwing a diaper in someone else's trash. They also have come in handy when he poops on an outfit when we're out & about. I just put the outfit in one of these bags until we get home, and that way my diaper bag doesn't get dirty or stinky.
This is another product we've used and loved for awhile. This stuff will clear up any problems really quickly.
Manny absolutely loves his Bumbo! He really enjoys being eye level with us and sitting up. I think it's great practice for his neck control too. :)
Praise Baby is a lifesaver! Manny loves to watch it and I usually turn it on while I'm getting ready in the morning. The added bonus is that it's actually a good soundtrack with good praise & worship songs, so I enjoy listening to it too. :)
  • Books
Manny likes to read books, for a short period of time anyway. These are a few of his current favorites simply because they are really short. Plus I enjoy reading them. :)
We have tons of burp cloths, but these are some of my favorite. They are super soft and absorbent, and since Manny is constantly drooling these days, it's always nice to have one nearby when he doesn't have a bib on. 
This is something else we've used the previous months that I forgot to mention. Picky Sticky's are little stickers that you put on plain onesies to take your baby's monthly pictures. You get the pack for around $15 shipped, so I think it's a pretty good deal and a fun way to chronicle your baby's growth.

I think that's it for this month...I'll be back before you know it with month 4!

August 23, 2010

3 months

Dear Emanuel, you are 3 months old! I'm a little late posting about your third month, but we've been busy! So what's new with you?
  • You weigh 13 pounds, 7 ounces - just about a pound more than last month. I didn't measure you, but you sure seem to be getting longer! Your little legs are the cutest thing ever.
  • You have officially graduated to a size 2 diaper. 
  • You are very serious a lot of the time, and your trademark scowl is one of your favorite expressions.

  • You absolutely LOVE to watch TV! You would definitely be a couch potato if we let you. You just kind of zone out anytime you see the magic box. :) Praise Baby is your favorite!
  • You have learned how to spin yourself in a circle, like a little clock dial or something. You are especially good at doing so when you're mad. I should've known with me as your momma you'd be a good little breakdancer!
  • You absolutely love to stand up. You get bored pretty easily and start voicing your opinion until we stand you up...then you just give us that goofy little grin like you're a hot shot. I love it!
  • You're still racking up the nicknames, with the latest being Stinkers and Stinky Pinky. Bubba Bear seems to be sticking the most though...thanks to your Aunt Rach for naming you that one!

  • You are a total chatterbox! I just wish I knew what you were talking about, but your sweet little voice is the cutest noise ever. I love when you wake up in the morning and I hear you just talking away. I'm glad you feel like you can tell me anything!
  • You are still wearing your 0-3 month clothes for the most part. Some of it is too short already, but the 3 - 6 month stuff is usually too big. 

  • You are one ticklish little guy, especially around your neck! Your daddy loves to make you giggle and squirm. I think you might've gotten that from me as I'm quite ticklish myself. :)
  • You are still nursing about every 2-3 hours during the day. We've had a few good weeks of sleeping through the night this month, but the last few weeks have not been so great. I'm thinking it's because you're a growing boy! We tried to introduce you to the bottle this month, but that was a meeting you wanted no part of. We have tried 4 different kinds of bottles and you don't seem the least bit interested in a single one. Daddy tries to give it to you for about 30 minutes to an hour, and then I usually give in and nurse you. We haven't given up on this yet, but I definitely think we waited too long to make this introduction. Live and learn! :) 
  • You love to sit in your Bumbo! I think you feel like a big shot when you do because you just look around like, "Yeah, what's up?" Anything to be eye level with mommy & daddy and you're a happy camper!
  • You are a total drool  monster!! You are always blowing spit bubbles and making a mess.
  • You have learned to arch your back, and I'm convinced you're going to pop up in a back bend one of these days. You do this a lot when you're mad or uncomfortable, like oh, maybe when you're tired of having your picture taken so you stop posing (ahem). It's crazy to see you starting to become mobile in small ways.

We didn't get a picture of you with your 3 month birthday gift from my friends in Waco because we didn't take pictures that day since you were sick, and you couldn't wait to open it. But we loved the cute tummy time mat they gave you and we will definitely put it to good use!

This month has held so many fun things. Your little personality is starting to shine through, and your daddy thinks you're a lot like me - what a compliment! Right? At least that's what daddy says. But I think he has to say that. :) You bring so much joy to our home, Emanuel...I don't know what daddy and I did before we had you to entertain us! I love you baby boy. XOXO

Love,
Mommy 

August 21, 2010

Video {Giggles & Bottles}

So my family has gotten on to me for not posting more videos, so here's a Manny-fix for you!

He has become quite ticklish, and was giggling like crazy...until I got out the video camera, of course. Still so cute though!





Here are a few of him hanging out on his playmat. Please excuse my sing-along. Yikes.



And finally, we tried to give him a bottle, but it wasn't much of a success. We'll try again tomorrow. :)



August 20, 2010

3 month pictures by Jessica Meinardus & Thanks!

As I mentioned yesterday, we had Manny's 3 month pictures taken as part of our Baby's First Year package with Jessica Meinardus. I'll be honest; I was dreading them. As y'all know, Manny has not been in the best of moods so I figured it'd be disastrous trying to have his pictures made. And yes, he was in a bad mood and wouldn't show us his little smile for anything, but she still did an amazing job! As I mentioned before, she is so laid-back and it helped me not stress out, which would've been easy to do given how tired I was. (as evidenced in the picture below!) I love the pictures, and it just makes me realize how much he's grown when comparing them to the newborn photos she took of him.
I'm so glad we went with this package with her...not only is she so talented, but her pricing is great! I definitely recommend checking her out if you're in the greater Fort Smith area. You can find her website here or her Facebook fan page here.

On another note, thanks for all of the advice and encouragement on yesterday's post. Last night was SO much better...only up once, then slept until 7:15. I agree with many of you in that it might be a growth spurt, so I'm making sure to keep him well-fed. :) I also am convinced he has started teething...he drools ALL THE TIME and so much that it ruins his outfit if I don't keep a bib(s) on him. He also has the runny nose, bad diapers, etc...so maybe that's part of it as well. Anyway, I just wanted to thank you guys for helping me out. It amazes me that people I don't even know in real life not only read my blog, but are sweet enough to encourage me & help me get this whole mommy thing down too. :) Y'all are the best...have a great weekend! :)

August 19, 2010

Classroom Resources {Part 2}


Here are a few more items I used in my classroom. I think this post will include everything that people have emailed me about. If I've missed anything, please let me know and I'll get it to you!
  • Homeworkopoly
Homeworkopoly was a favorite with the kiddos. If they brought their homework back every day, on Friday they got to roll and move their piece around the game board. I got this idea from the TeachNet website. You can go here to download the game board and playing cards. I made my own playing pieces and laminated them. Click here to download the playing pieces.
  • Money Song
This is a fun little song that I saw somewhere on the internet, and I just put it on a poster to hang by our math meeting board. It really helped the kids and they loved to sing it!
  • Color Signs
I had folders & baskets that were labeled as follows: Marvelous Monday, Terrific Tuesday, Wonderful Wednesday, Tremendous Thursday, and Fabulous Friday.  When preparing for the week, I put all the necessary lessons and materials for each day in the basket. A little time spent at the end of the week doing this allowed for a much smoother week the following week!  Click here to download the color signs. The color system also assisted in another classroom management piece. I used it to divide the kids into teams, and since my Monday sign was red, Team Red would be my special team that day, get to do everything first, etc. Since Tuesday's sign was orange, Team Orange would be my Tuesday team. Does that make sense? I could always glance a the baskets for the day of the week and whatever color the sign was would quickly remind me what the team color for the day was.
  •  Contraction Surgery
I don't have any files for this, but it's super simple. You just need a glue stick, scissors, band-aids (cut in half), and surgery masks are fun if you can get them! Just ask your local hospital to donate them. So basically you just type up the words you are working on and cut them out. (Example: "do" on one piece, "not" on another piece.) Tell the kids you are going to perform surgery, and to cut out the part we don't need anymore, then stitch the word back up where you took the letters out with a band-aid. They love it! :)

Hope these are useful to some of you! Let me know if I missed anything. :)

Advice?

I. Am. Exhausted. Manny has been having a really hard time this week. At first I thought it was because he wasn't feeling well, but he seems mostly better now and we're still having a rough time. Particularly at night. This week he has been waking up screaming between 2 and 2:30. Night before last I did a Dream Feed at 1 am (yes, I was up way too late - have so much to do though!) and he still woke up at 2:15. So last night I skipped the dream feed and he still woke up at 2:00. If I were to nurse him I know he'd go right back to sleep but he is too old to be eating that often, so we've just been trying to rock him back to sleep. He'll fall asleep in our arms, but as soon as we put him down he starts crying again. We repeated this cycle a few times, and finally decided to let him cry it out. Is he too young for this? He whimpered for awhile but eventually went to sleep. He never seemed to sleep soundly though and stirred a lot. When he started crying again at 4:30, I went ahead and fed him and he slept until about 5:45. This is just so not like him. I feel frustrated because he is typically so predictable, but I just can't figure out why he's not sleeping as well and I hate not being able to make him happy. If there is truly something I could be doing to fix this, I want to do it. But I know it's possible it's a phase and we just have to ride it out. This is the most he's ever been up at night so I just feel clueless on how to handle it...especially since we're supposed to be getting closer to sleeping through the night, not further from it. :) Any thoughts or pearls of wisdom to share?

On a completely unrelated note, has anyone ever checked a car seat while flying? If so, did you just cover it up with a trash bag or is there a better way to do it?

We are headed to his 3 month pictures and I have a hunch it might be a little challenging to get him to cooperate. :) Wish us luck!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

August 17, 2010

Classroom Resources {Part 1}

Sorry I'm so late getting this post up...we've had a busy day. Manny has been kind of sick and just fussy in general, so I haven't had the chance to get on the computer. He is 3 months old today...wow!! Since he was sick I didn't get to take his pictures, but hopefully he'll feel better tomorrow and we'll take them then. In the meantime, check out this precious picture I took on Friday!

On to the teaching stuff. Here are a few things that I think might be useful to others.
  • "We have gone to..." signs
To help others be able to easily find where our class was, I displayed this sign outside the door. I designed & laminated them (I got the pictures from the Microsoft Office site and just added text), and put Velcro strips on the back so they could easily be switched out (job for Student of the Week). The main piece says "We have gone to" and the bottom part is interchangeable. I don't have all of these in one document - don't ask me why I did it that way :) - but I don't have time to combine them right now, so it's multiple downloads...sorry! Here they are:
Download Door Signs 1
Download Door Signs 2
Download Door Signs 3
Download Door Signs 4
Download Door Signs 5
Download Door Signs 6
  • ABC's of 2nd Grade Brochure
This original template comes from another teacher, and unfortunately it's been so many years since I downloaded it I have no idea who to give credit to. I changed it up to meet my classroom needs & style. This was a great tool at Parent Orientation as it gave me talking points of things I wanted to cover with parents.  I'm sharing it as a Word document so you can edit it, but you might need to play with the layout & fonts a little unless you have the same fonts that I used on your computer. 
Download ABC's Brochure Inside
Download ABC's Brochure Outside
  • Back to School Scavenger Hunt
This was given to me by my sister Jenny, and I think it's an excellent idea! It's a scavenger hunt for students to complete on Meet the Teacher night. This gives them something to do and also familiarizes them with the room so they feel more comfortable on the first day of school. I'm sharing it as a Word document also so you can change the items to fit your classroom. Again, you might have to adjust the layout/fonts.
Download Back to School Scavenger Hunt

I have a few more things to post, so check back tomorrow or Wednesday - I'll add them as soon as I get the time. Hope you enjoy these items! Let me know if you have any questions. :)

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