10/09/2017

Jack’s Two Year Update

Well friends, we’ve made it to the two year mark: The official end of the baby years as we are now fully immersed into toddler territory. This is most likely the last update I do for Jack to document his growth here on the blog. I’ve been sharing his changes since month one, and it’s hard to believe that two years has already come and gone.

Jack's Two Year Updates

One Month Update - Baby Jack

Read more of Jack’s Updates here:

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – Jack is one incredibly active kid. I know a lot of people say their toddler is busy, but seriously, Jack is busy. He would play non-stop if he had the option and loves to be on the go at all times. I try to keep him moving as much as I can, and get him outside whenever possible. Since I’m still recovering from my c-section, it’s been hard the past few weeks to keep him occupied. He’s used to really long walks and going to the park and local playgrounds during the day, and I’m just not yet able to be active like I need to be for him. Thankfully I’ve had a lot of help and I’ve relied on others to get him outside and running around these past few weeks.

Playing

Jack's Two Year Updates

Jack’s favorite activities include being outside. He loves to go to the park and throw his baseball and kick his soccer ball. He is also getting really into playgrounds as he continues to grow, goes ga-ga over splash pads, and loves all things water and sand. He likes to explore, pick up leaves, run the bases at a local baseball field, push his own stroller, and ‘help’ walk Tebow. He also loves to swing and you can bet that anytime he sees a baby swing he’ll be reaching for your hand and taking you to that swing. There is also a local park that has an amazing sand box filled with water features and big play trucks. He loves to visit and I let him play until his heart’s content. After that we go on a mommy and Jack date to Chick-fil-A afterwards!

As far as indoor activities goes, Jack loves cars and trucks. My dad has collectible race cars that he has purchased over the years and has been giving them to Jack to play with. They are a little pricey for a two year old to play with, but my dad always encourages him to enjoy them and we all try to teach him to play gently, and respect his cars by taking care of them. It’s always a work in progress! He loves any and all vehicles – he calls them ‘vroom vrooms’ – and likes to point out everything from tractors to dump trucks.

Watching

Jack's Two Year Updates

He loves watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Mickey and the Roadster Racers when he – or mommy and daddy – needs breaks. Any parent who doesn’t utilize a show or two when their child needs to settle down or you need to make dinner or get ready for the day is far better than me. 😉 Jack doesn’t watch much and really doesn’t like many shows, but these two Mickey series are his favorites. I have to admit too that Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is amazing for learning! I swear that Jack has picked up on so many letters, numbers, colors and shapes from watching the show. He amazes me with what he knows everyday and he is quick to tell everyone now that he is two!

Reading

Jack's Two Year Updates

He also absolutely loves books and we like to read before his nap and bedtime every day. Sometimes we read one or two books, and sometimes ten before bed. I always just play it by ear depending on how sleepy he is, and how distracted he becomes during the story. Some of his current favorite books right now is On the Night You Were Born, Chicka Chicka Boom BoomGuess How Much I Love You, and his newest favorite Alfie and Bet’s ABC’s, which I got for him as a birthday gift.

Eating

Jack's Two Year UpdatesJack is still a big eater who loves a variety of foods. I’ve noticed in the past few months he has become a little pickier but I always try to direct him back to eating whole and real foods. I think now that he is older I’ve become a little more lax in him eating treats, but the moment he starts to refuse his green beans or carrots the treats are limited and we get back into the swing of our regular eating. Typically his meals will look something like this:

Breakfast: Oatmeal with Butter or Peanut Butter, Eggs with Cheese, Whole Wheat French Toast, all served with Fruit

Snack: Cottage Cheese or Yogurt, half a Clif Z-Bar, Applesauce

Lunch: Macaroni and Cheese with Peas, Sliced Turkey and Cheese, Chicken, Fruit, Whole Wheat Tortilla with Cheese, English Muffin with Marinara and Cheese (Obviously anything with cheese – his favorite!)

Snack: Green Smoothie made with Almond Milk, Frozen Banana, Peanut Butter, plain Greek Yogurt, Frozen Blueberries, and two huge handfuls of Spinach

Dinner: Whatever we are eating!

Dessert: Annie’s Bunny Grahams

Sleeping

Jack sleeps really well at night, but I would say once or twice a week he wakes up crying. We set up his toddler bed about a month ago since he is able to climb out of his crib, but so far he hasn’t been interested. He sleeps in his pack-and-play right now for his own safety, but we are hoping he will want to move soon. We know it would be a lot more comfortable for him! He usually goes down for bed about 8pm and then wakes up around 7am. He is a really great napper during the early afternoon, which is so nice! I hope it continues for awhile as it allows me to get a lot of work done during that time. He usually goes down around 1pm and sleeps until 3 or 3:30. Eventually too I would like to get both kids on the same napping schedule, but that will take a little extra time – and trial and error!

Likes

  • Morning Milk and Cereal Cuddles with Mommy
  • Playing Ball – Kicking and Throwing
  • Playing with his Cars and Trucks – Watching all the ‘vroom-vrooms’ from the front window
  • Watching the lawn mower man cut the grass – and all things tractors and machines
  • Mickey Mouse – Clubhouse and Roadster Racers
  • Playing with Daddy
  • Singing Songs
  • Being Outside

Dislikes

  • Going to bed when he wants to keep playing!
  • Needing to go inside before he’s ready
  • Not getting his food fast enough
  • Getting overly tired

Jack’s Two Year Must Haves

Jack's 2 Year Update

Alfie & Bet’s ABC

Fisher-Price Disney Mickey and the Roadster Racers Cars

Gap Print Crew Pullover

Cartoon R/C Race Car Radio Control Toy for Toddlers

Stride Rite Garrett Bootie

Guess How Much I Love You Board Book

Annie’s Homegrown 7.5 oz. Whole Wheat Bunnies Baked Snack CrackersGap Camo Pull-On Pants

Night Night Baby Sleepers In Pure Organic Cotton in Navy/White

10/05/2017

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Last Saturday was a quintessential fall day. It was absolutely gorgeous out – sunny and warm, yet a touch of coolness in the air and wind. We just couldn’t stay home or inside, so we loaded up the crew and headed to a local apple orchard.

Apple Picking at the OrchardApple Picking at the Orchard

Apple Picking at the Orchard

I brought with me my Solly Baby wrap to carry Savannah, and we let Jack have free reign to the orchard. We went to a local place called Peifer Orchards. I am actually hesitant to share this hidden gem, because it was that good! It wasn’t too crowded in the least, and the trees were filled with beautifully red, crisp apples.

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Apple Picking at the Orchard

We have actually been to orchards in the past with literally no apples on the trees, so finding this place was apple Heaven. The little barn store was filled with everything fall you would want – pumpkins, gourds, hay bales, and fall baked goods like apple pie, and apple butters and jams.

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Apple Picking at the Orchard

There was also a pick-your-own pumpkin patch that we passed on our way to the orchard. We are planning on going pumpkin picking later in October, but this would be a great location for doing so as well.

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Jack was immediately drawn to the large orange pumpkins, and really wanted to pull this wagon filled with pumpkins! Anyone else’s toddler obsessed with all things wagons, cars, and vehicles? Jack calls everything with a tire a ‘vroom vroom’!

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Once we made it through the gravel trail leading toward the apples, Jack had a blast picking – and eating – the apples.

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Usually I am a stickler for staying clean, (I’m still learning how to be a boy mom!), but I decided to be ‘cool’ and let Jack eat his own apple while the juice ran down his chin and onto his clean shirt. I figured that it couldn’t hurt to let my two year old be two and explore and have new experiences. One day I would look back and regret not letting him get messy, not watching my toddler eat an apple in a beautiful orchard on a gorgeous fall day. Such a beautiful memory that I’ll never forget! It is hard to watch my son get older, but it is also fun to watch his eyes light up with new experiences, and how he can make something as simple as apple picking feel like a new adventure.

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Apple Picking at the Orchard

For $20 you can pick as many apples as you like, as long as they fit in your bag. We filled our bag to the top, and this week we have had them as a snack, with peanut butter, baked an apple crisp, and chopped them up and added to a salad with good cheddar, walnuts, cranberries and mixed greens.

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Apple Picking at the Orchard

Apple picking is fun, but apple picking with your child is just the best. Fall is my favorite season and I am so glad to be having a nice postpartum recovery this time around, and can’t wait to enjoy even more outings and fun in October.

Apple Picking at the Orchard

10/03/2017

Jack’s Roadster Racers Second Birthday Party

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

With Jack’s birthday falling just a couple weeks after Savannah’s birth, we went back-and-forth on whether or not to have a party this year. I knew with becoming a big brother that I wanted to do a little something special and just for Jack, so I pushed his party back another week and swore I would keep it small and simple. I truly wanted the party to be all about him, so I went with a theme that I knew he would love.

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

This past Saturday we celebrated Jack’s second birthday with a Mickey and the Roadster Racers themed party. I had envisioned a casual outdoor bbq in late September, and what we got was a day that felt more like the middle of summer with temperatures in the 90’s. We decided to keep the party inside in the air conditioning instead, and I think everyone was much happier for it.

Jack's Roadster Racers PartyJack's Roadster Racers Party

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

I kept the menu simple with grilled chicken, hot dogs (If you have ever seen Mickey Mouse Clubhouse or Roadster Racers then you get why!) and smoked sausage and brats, along with macaroni and cheese, and a fall harvest salad complete with shaved brussels sprouts, dried cranberries, diced apples, toasted pecans, and Boursin cheese. <– It was so, so good! We also set out a big sweet and salty snack tray as I was inspired from this post.

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

Jack's Roadster Racers Party


Jack's Roadster Racers Party

For dessert we ordered the birthday cake from my favorite bakery, Ele Cake Co. I wasn’t a fan of the design they offered for a Roadster’s cake, so I designed one of my own instead! Originally I wanted the design of Jack’s shirt drawn on the top of the cake, but I was told it was a copyright infringement and they couldn’t do it. So I asked for a race check pattern, but that could only be done with fondant and cost a pretty penny. I finally approved of the race track design and I think it turned out adorable. Jack was obsessed and while we were singing happy birthday, he reached down and plucked the Mickey car right off the top of the cake. It was hilarious!

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

I ordered Jack’s custom shirt and shorts from Etsy late August. The shirt was a little pricey, but the quality was amazing (ordered from this shop) and I had the shorts made to match (from this shop). The shorts were a little big, but very reasonably priced, and went with both the theme and shirt so well. The whole outfit turned out adorable!

Jack received some great gifts including a Thomas the Train track set, Mickey and the Roadster’s cars and track, and a tricycle. My two year old partied hard – and shed a few tears here or there along the way – yet thoroughly enjoyed his day and party! I feel as if I blinked and the last two years disappeared. I’ve been told a lot lately how blessed I am for my family and I couldn’t agree more.

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

Never in my wildest dreams did I think my love could expand so much and so quickly, but my two babies truly stole my heart and forever changed my perspective on myself and my life. These are the best days of my life so far and I’m so looking forward to all the years and memories to come!

Jack's Roadster Racers Party

Click here to read all about Jack’s Labrador Themed First Birthday Party.