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July 2013

Little Boy in the Hood

Owen in hoodie 2

Wearing his first tiny hoodie, Little Bear was all snug on a recent trip to the supermarket ... we had a rare chilly day here (in the midst of a super hot summer) so this soft jersey jacket was just the thing.


And LB had his 2-month checkup today and I'm happy to report he is up another pound and an inch! He fussed during the weigh in, but flirted up a storm with the pediatrician - I was a bit jealous, I'll admit! (He was giving her *my* smiles, lol!)

Then he had his "ouchies" - 3 shots and an oral vaccine - and he was NOT a happy camper during that ... until he got back in his mama's arms ... then all was right once again.


Hope your week's going well so far ... Thank you again for all the comments, advice, good wishes and prayers ... I appreciate every bit of encouragement and support!

☀ Little Bear is 2 Months Old!

Owen 2 months 2

Two months old and such a joy!

Our Little Bear is growing so fast - cooing (his catchphrase: agoo) and smiling (real smiles!), reaching for things (including his toes!) and working on that head and neck control like nobody's business!


LB will be baptised next weekend at our parish church, with my dear cousin Kate as godmother, and our own beloved Bookworm as godfather ... what a special day that will be ... we can hardly wait!

Blessings on your day, my friends!


An Update and Many Thanks!

First off, I want to thank you all for your wonderful advice and kind prayers!

I knew all I had to do was ask, and I would receive many thoughtful responses regarding my current illness. I appreciate the time and energy you all spent advising me on the mastitis ... so much excellent information in this comment thread!! In fact, I'm printing it all out to keep for future reference. And since I certainly don't want to go through this again, I will definitely keep in mind all your great tips on how to prevent masitis in the first place.

In the meantime, I am feeling much better - I think I was fortunate to nip this infection right in the bud because by the second morning the redness and fever were gone, and by the third day the achiness had subsided dramatically. 

Plus, the very good news is I have not reacted to the antibiotic! Which is a miracle, truly, because THERE HAS NOT BEEN ONE antibiotic I could take successfully in years. So I now have a medicine I can add to the "ok" column on my medical chart. :)

Also, I am nursing and resting as much as possible and thanks to my mum who has been here every day that has been very possible. She's been here helping with the kids, the baby, the dishes, the laundry, the unpacking (which we are STILL working through) and the meals. I don't know how I'd be getting through this without her ...

(We're also getting ready for a big celebration here in a couple of weeks - a double party in honor of Little Bear's Baptism and Bookworm's Graduation. I'm all about the list-making right now ... )

 Now, just to add insult to injury (or perhaps it's the other way around!) yesterday I had a little stumble (not while holding the baby thank goodness!) and stubbed my toe fiercely on of all things, Bill's cordless drill. So now I can add "broken toe" to this crazy week.


It's not so bad I can't walk, just all bruised and ugly looking. I can walk if I am careful not to put pressure on it and thankfully, you really don't have much call for moving the third toe to the right of the big one. ;)


I have a little one waking in the crib next to me and so my time here is up. I wanted to be sure you all knew how grateful I am for your support, that I am on the mend, and that I will be back here again just as soon as I can ...


Nursing Mother Advice?

(Note: This post will certainly be "TMI" for many folks so please feel free to skip it!)

So, I've been nursing for eight weeks and over the past couple of days I noticed some symptoms that made me think I might be coming down with mastitis. I've never had it before, but I've read about it and heard about it from others. Well, last night things really kicked in - I developed a high fever, chills, body aches, and those telltale "red streaks" - so this morning I placed a call with my midwife's office to see what they thought ... and now I've been put on an antibiotic.

So I'm wondering if any of my readers have any mastitis advice for me - how you recovered from it and prevented it from happening again. I'm especially interested in home/natural remedies ... not that an antibiotic is not warranted, but I have a really tough time with antibiotics. In fact, I'm allergic to most of them, so I'm hoping (praying!) I will not react to this cephalexin. 

Other than the medicine, I have warm compresses going, and we're doing very frequent nursings ... I'm also taking motrin as needed. Any other tips?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts!

☀ Baby Boy in Blue

Owen in living room swing 4

Owen in living room 6

Owen in living room swing 5

I sure am glad you all are enjoying my Little Bear updates, because I can't seem to help posting them!


These particular pictures were taken very early this morning as LB enjoyed his infant swing for a bit. (He's napping there now as I type ...) The pictures were taken in our new living room and as you can see, it's a soft blue and white room. The lovey drapes were left for us by the previous owners ...

Owen in living room swing 1

This is the room where my desk was moved ... I'll do a post on my "new corner office" sometime soon. :)


Enjoy your Tuesday, my friends!

☀ Good Morning, Little Bear!

Owen's 1st crib morning

Little Bear had his first night in the "big boy" crib ~ and he did very well! LB loved his bassinet, but outgrew it pretty quickly - it became a real issue this past week after I noticed his little knees were bent as he slept!

(Did I mention he's in the 95th percentile for length?)


I was quite nervous he wouldn't "take" to the crib and sleep poorly, but he thankfully slept well - from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. and then again until 5. Not too shabby!

The picture above is taken of his first waking moments ... and here he is a bit later after being nursed and changed and placed back in his crib to "hang out".

Owen's 1st crib morning 3

The crib is in our bedroom for now ... when he gets a little older it will be moved into the nursery.


How and where do your babies sleep? And how do you cope with not getting much sleep yourself?

Happy Monday, my friends!

Little Bear & the Jungle Gym

Owen under gym

Yesterday, Bookworm and Crackerjack accompanied me (and Little Bear) to the baby "superstore" so I could purchase a crib mattress. (Yes, LB has now outgrown his bassinet!) While I browsed, they had fun picking out a few "toys" for their baby brother: a crib mobile, a floor mirror and this very bright and busy jungle gym play-mat ... 

Little Bear wasn't quite sure what to make of it!


I hope you're all having a nice weekend ... thanks so much for stopping by and for all your lovely comments. I will see you all again very soon!


Little Bear Rolled Over!

This is one determined little Little Bear!

He'd been working on this for a few days - we'd have him on his back playing and "chatting" as he likes to do, and he'd start swinging his little legs over to one side ... I said to Bill, "I think he's trying to roll over!"

Next thing we knew he was over on his belly, but he had that left arm pinned underneath ...

But yesterday he got that arm out!

Owen rolling over 4

Owen rolling over 3

Owen rolling over 2

Way to go, Little Bear!

Now, he hasn't rolled the opposite way yet - belly to back - but I'd guess it's just a matter of time. ;-)

Dear Mamas, at what age did your babies roll over? I seem to recall my older boys doing this later than six weeks - maybe at 3-4 months or so? Not that it matters of course, all my children developed at different speeds ... but I'm wondering if this little one is gearing up to be quite the active fellow!


Have yourselves a great Monday!

☀ Little Bear's First Mass

Owen's 1st mass

Little Bear - who is 6 weeks old today! - went to his very first Mass this morning. He slept in my arms till the end (at which point he woke and "socialized" a little with the folks who sit near us) and received a blessing from Father Michael, our new pastor.

There's something very sweet about holding a new baby in church ...

as a mother comforts her child,
so will I comfort you ...

(from today's first reading)

Enjoy your Sunday, my friends! It's another scorcher here in New England!

☀ Welcome to My New Kitchen!

Now, I must preface this post with a disclaimer that the kitchen (the whole house, in fact) is still in quite a desperate state of disorder. Things are not yet organized or set up as we'd like, but I thought I'd show you "what's what" so far in the kitchen ...

After all, I spend a whole lot of time in - and blogging about - my kitchen!

(Note: Some of these photos were taken on a very dark and stormy afternoon - but the windows face southward so the room gets really nice light throughout the day.)

New kitchen 1

The kitchen is situated at the back of the house, and at first glance you can see it is painted and much lighter than my old cherry kitchen! But I really love the soft gray-green shade of the cabinetry, and I like the overall layout and size. The window over the sink looks out at the patio and backyard ...

At one end of the room there is a large picture window and space for a table and chairs.

New kitchen 2

New kitchen 3

This is a "new" table and chairs set that my mother-in-law found for us:

New kitchen 9

(And by "new" I mean, "new for us," and by "found" I mean, "salvaged from her local transfer station"! Isn't it nice?)

And oh, I absolutely love this window! That tree in the background - seen in the far right windowpane - is where we plan to post all (or most of) our birdfeeders.

New kitchen 7

The floor-to-ceiling cabinets along this wall form a wonderful pantry ...

New kitchen 4

(I'll do a whole pantry post once I've got it all organized.)

New kitchen 5

(Do not let the number of pots on the cooktop fool you - they are just waiting to be put away. I have yet to do any significant cooking in this kitchen as of yet.)

New kitchen 6

And in this alcove there will be ...

New kitchen 8

Well, we're not sure yet!

A cabinet or hutch of some kind ... perhaps for homeschool supplies or table linens/candles/decorations or maybe this will be home to our new nature corner ... we'll just have to see.

(The room just beyond the kitchen - where Bookworm is sitting - is the family room.)


So there's my new kitchen in a nutshell! I will post more photos later once I get things set up as I'd like ... it's quite a mess right now ... but I can hardly wait to get baking in here!


(And for my homekeeping friends ~ well, you can just bet I'm re-tooling my "weekly housekeeping routine" and a post on that will be forthcoming as well.

Happy Friday, my friends ~ have yourselves a great weekend!


Happy Independence Day!

Stars and stripes

You're a grand old flag,
You're a high flying flag
And forever in peace may you wave.
You're the emblem of
The land I love.
The home of the free and the brave.
Ev'ry heart beats true
'neath the Red, White and Blue,
Where there's never a boast or brag.
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
Keep your eye on the grand old flag!


Enjoy your Thursday, my friends!

Lovely Little Hummingbird ...

Hummingbird at new house 1

Hummingbird at new house 2

Having our lunch at the kitchen table and watching the lovely hummingbirds fly back and forth to the feeder. Some of you may remember how fond we were of the hummingbirds at our old house - one female in particular whom we named "Harriet".

What shall we name our new pair of hummers , I wonder? (The female is pictured above, but there is a male too - he of the "ruby colored throat" - but he's a bit more camera-shy.)

Well, it was with very heavy hearts that we took down our birdfeeders this spring knowing we'd be moving and not wanting the birds to be so dependent on our feeding. I can't tell you how it saddened me to see the little red squirrel sitting on the branches outside the learning room, chewing a spruce cone because all the feeders were empty - and the hummingbird hovering outside our kitchen window most certainly wondering where the nectar she liked so much went ... :(

So I hope the next owners of our old house will feed the birds (I asked the realtor to put in a little plug for birdfeeding, lol - stressing how much we enjoyed a wide variety of birds through the years). But I can't dwell on that ... here at our new place I am over the moon to "discover" so many types of birds and critters in the short time we've been here ...

And flora, too ... very early this morning - before the heat got to be too much - Earlybird, Little Bear, Crackerjack and I walked around the property and started noticing all the different trees, plants and wildflowers (and weeds!) growing all over the place. For science this coming school year we will be studying Botany and we'll be starting our "research" right here in our very own 2-acre yard! That should be all kinds of fun ...

Spruce cones 1

Ok, I know I promised a "new kitchen" post and that will come very soon, but most likely after tomorrow's holiday. (Is it really the 4th of July already??)

Hope you're all having a good week ... see you here again very soon!


Settling In ~ Pictures & Notes

Good Tuesday Evening, everyone!

Well, my laptop broke last week so I've not been online very much ... but happily, the Apple Store worked its magic and I'm back in action. :) Just thought I'd post some pictures and notes from our second week settling into the new house.

First of all, Archie is doing so much better - he's back to his usual self, just a bit "holier" than he was before. (Lol, that was Bill's joke.) Seriously, though, he was so very lucky - the hole in his stomach was such a deep puncture wound, the vet said it stopped just outside the abdominal wall. We still have no idea how it happened ... we're just very glad he's ok.

Here he is "recouping" in his new favorite spot, on one of the kitchen chairs.

Settling in 8

And here he is with his brother. Remember all those window pics of these cats at the old house?

Settling in 2

I have a feeling we'll have lots of new window pics to share here ...

Like this one ...

Settling in 9

Just one day after hanging our hummingbird feeder we had ourselves a hummer!

She had been visiting these spiky flowers that are growing in a flower bed just off the back patio ...

Settling in 11

These flowers are also growing there ... might they be coneflowers?

Settling in 10

And I'm not sure what these cheerful flowers are growing out front ...

Settling in 5

Also seen out front ...

Settling in 1

A teeny tiny baby rabbit ...

(I think he lives under the ferns which I have forbid Bill from clearing.)

And a small "herd" of deer (a third deer is just off to the left) ...

Settling in 4

This is our front yard ... very woodsy as you can see!

Now how about the "wildlife" inside?

Settling in 6

Our older boys enjoying a hot dog supper in the breakfast nook ...

And introducing ...

Owen's 1st tornado warning 1

Settling in 7

"Little Bear"

... as Owen will now be known here at the blog.


(We chose "LB" because ... he makes the cutest little grunty sounds - particularly when nursing - and he sounds just like a little growly bear cub!)

These pictures were taken yesterday when our community was under a tornado warning! We actually had to go down to the basement for a while! The weather's been so crazy lately ...

Ok, so that's all for now, but in my next post I will give you all a peek at my new kitchen!

Hope your week's going well ... thanks so much for stopping by!


p.s. I realize my blog sidebars are WAY out of date - I will be working on those just as soon as I can. :)