Friday, April 17, 2015

Oh Hey, Friday Favorites!

Happy Friday!!!
I'm not going to lie.  I'm REALLY glad this week is over.  In addition to the regular busyness of our week, we had one kid in the ER with a nasty cut that needed stitched up and a sprained knee,  then Liam got explosive diarrhea followed by a high fever (hello, 6 outfit changes and 20 diaper changes in ONE day), then Lily started coughing out of the blue and had diarrhea.  My kids rarely get sick, but of course, the two youngest had to choose this week to do it. Thankfully, it was just a 12 hour virus for both kids! 

Add in TWO trips to Dylan and Lexie's school today, followed by a 45 minute wait in a tiny room with 4 kids for Dylan's wound recheck appointment, and it turned out to be quite a week. 

I am really hoping for an uneventful weekend!!!

Onto my favorites...


This sweater from Target.  I bought in on my birthday, and fell in love with it when I put it on.  Every time I wear it, I get tons of compliments and questions about where I got it. It's definitely my new favorite shirt!




My favorite good news this week was finding out that Liam was chosen as a brand enthusiast for Littlest Warrior!  We adore their shirts, so I'm super excited about this opportunity!  I love spreading Liam's joy!



My favorite 10 year old!  He was so brave after he fell 6-8 feet out of a tree. After the initial freakout process, he calmed down and held it together during wound cleaning, x-rays, and stitches. He dealt with it like a champ. He is so much braver than I am!



Easter Clearance.  I got so much stuff at Target for less than $15 total.  One of the three wreaths I bought was $15 on its own before it was marked down.  SCORE! Target is my favorite! (And dangerous.  SO dangerous.)

Target Easter clearance sucked me in. 6 baskets, 3 wreaths, a onesie, a straw cup, candy, lip balm, and basket tags for less than $15!  I don't feel guilty at all!


Two of my favorite super cheap products that work really well: Suave Dry Shampoo and e.l.f. waterproof eyeliner pen!

The Suave Dry Shampoo works wonders on my hair! On the days I don't wash my hair, or if I don't have time to shower after a workout, I spray it on my roots, rub it in, and it looks clean and full of body.  I tried more expensive versions and this under $3 dry shampoo works just as well!

The e.l.f. waterproof eyeliner pen is my absolute favorite out of every eyeliner I tried.  Even that $23 eyeliner that was highly recommended. It seriously works better than that one. It stays put for the entire day and doesn't run. The best part?  It's only $2!!! I was very doubtful when I read a beauty review about it and heard a few other people mention it, but I figured it was worth a shot.  Oh, it was!  I highly recommend it!


Finally, here are my favorite everyday moments this week according to my cell phone and Instagram:

My babies hanging out at Papa and Nina's house...


Dylan had so much fun at the Comic Convention in Pittsburgh with his dad and friends.  He got to meet one of his favorite wrestlers, Rob Van Dam, so it was one of his favorite days ever!


We spent so much time outdoors on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. We cleaned up the yard and outdoor toys, grilled out, and even emptied our sunporch so we can redo it.  The kids loved eating at the new table on the porch and playing with the school bus toy they haven't played with in years! Next up?  Paint and outdoor carpeting!

Spring is finally here!!! The yard still looks brown and muddy, but it's warm, the grass is getting greener, and flowers are coming up! It will be in full bloom in no time!


The first half of the week was amazing, then it all went downhill after I took these pictures!  Here's to a much better week to come!!!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!  

I'm linking up with Andrea, Narci, and Erika for Friday Favorites!


I'm also linking up with September Farm and The Farmer's Wife for Oh Hey, Friday!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Liam at 19 Months


Liam Dayne
19 months
18 1/2 lbs
29 inches


Milestones:  Standing unassisted for longer periods of time, taking 1-2 unassisted steps between furniture (when he wants to of course), crawling up steps, and crawling down from furniture.  The urge to climb onto the couch is there, and he picks up his leg to do it, but he's still too short!


Tooth Count: No change since last month!  He still has 7 teeth, but it looks like 3 more are on the way!


Eating: 3 meals a day plus 2 snacks.  He self feeds every meal, and is beginning to learn how to use a spoon and fork properly.  He uses a straw cup for his milk, and he briefly nurses when he wakes up, and briefly nurses before bed.  He is gradually weaning from breastfeeding.


Favorite Foods:  Bananas, Cereal Bars, Yogurt, Yogurt Melts, French Toast (plain), Macaroni and Cheese, Pasta with sauce, Carrots, Peas, Cheese, Peaches, and Pineapple.


Sleeping:  Liam sleeps 12-14 hours a night, takes one long afternoon nap, and often falls asleep in the car. I have no complaints in the sleep department!


Words/Signs:  Mama, Dada, Papa, Dyl (Dylan), Up, Down, Hi, ByeBye, Baby, Pop, All Done, and Bubbles. A lot of his words are repeated when we say them, so his Speech Therapist and I are working on getting him to incorporate them more into everyday speech. He regularly signs eat and more. He LOVES to sing!


Likes:  Snuggling, giving hugs and kisses, smiling at everyone, making messes, eating, playing at the library, crawling through the grass, cruising through the house, eating paper products, speech therapy sessions, and taking baths.


Dislikes:  Having his face wiped, having a dirty diaper, being cold, being forced to do something he doesn't want to do, and swinging in outdoor swings (which used to be a favorite last year).


Favorite Toys and Games: {links provided on most}   Leapfrog Cook and Play Potsy, Play Kitchen and accessories, Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Puppy's Activity Home, books, Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages Crawl Around Car, bristle blocks, vtech sit-to-stand learning walker, and his foam letter playmat.  He loves playing with Lily's mini baby dolls that are in a mini bunkbed, and loves to play peek-a-boo!


Favorite Gear: {links provided on most}  Ergo baby carrier, Halo SleepSack, Ikea Bibs, Munchkin Click Lock Weighted Flexi-Straw Cup, and Nuby No-Spill Easy Grip Cup with Super Straw.


Nicknames: Miam, SuperLiam, Little Dude, and Buddy.


Health:  He doesn't have any health issues, which we are SO thankful for!  He only got sick once over the winter, which is great for a child who has Down Syndrome. Unfortunately, he has a high fever and diarrhea right now.  I'm praying it passes quickly!


Early Intervention: He receives Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, and Speech Therapy in our home. Each type of therapy is once a week for one hour.  Keeping my house company-ready twice a week can be tedious, but I know Early Intervention benefits him so much!  I think we maintain a good balance between therapy and letting him be a kid!


Wearing:  Mostly 6-9 month clothing, size 2 shoes, and size 3 diapers. Some 0-3 month onesies still fit, and some 3-6 month clothing items still fit.  He's growing, but at a very slow rate right now!


Personality:  He's the sweetest, snuggliest, happiest, most charming little boy! We adore him!


Wednesday, April 15, 2015

PSA: Don't Climb Trees

As a mom, nothing fills your heart with dread like the sounds of panicked screams coming from your child.

Thankfully, I only had to experience that a few times in the past, but I can now add another notch on my kid-in-the-ER belt.

It was a typical, completely crazy Tuesday.  Tuesdays are always overbooked for me.  I put the kids on the bus, completely cleaned my house, had Liam's Physical Therapy session in my home, gulped down a quick breakfast, and had Liam's Speech Therapy Session and 6 month Early Intervention Review.  As soon as Liam's ST left, we got in the car and rushed to the library for Lily's Storytime Session.  I made it home just in time to remember I needed to file our local taxes (I always forget these ones!), and by the time I finished, it was time for Dylan and Lexie to return home.

We rushed through homework and dinner, then Grant's friend and his son, and Grant's brother and his family came over to watch the baseball game. All the kids ran outside to play. I put on my pjs and I was so relieved that I was finally able to sit down and relax for the first time all day.  It wasn't long before I heard that panicked scream. "MOOOOOMMMMMM!!!!!!!!!!!" 

My heart dropped, and I knew going to the ER was in our immediate future. I could just tell by the tone of their voices. I took off running, and met Dylan as he stumbled into the house.  He just kept screaming my name.  I could see blood running down his shin.

I can't quite remember the next few seconds, but one of the boys or Lexie said they were climbing trees, and Dylan fell out of the tree. One of them said his leg was really, really bad.  I only caught a glimpse as he moved his hand, but it did look bad. There was basically a hole in his leg. Grant came racing into the room, took one look at it and said we had to go now.

As I quickly changed into clothes and grabbed my purse, Grant mentioned that he thought he could see bone.  We left Lexie, Lily, and Liam behind, and Grant carried Dylan to the SUV. After a ridiculous wrestling match with a car seat in our driveway,  which included Grant and I frantically yelling at each other (I'm sure it was quite a scene for our neighbors and people at the stop sign who didn't realize what was happening), we headed to the closest hospital, which, thankfully, is only 10 minutes away.

Up until that point, Dylan was screaming bloody murder, which is not like him at all.  He's tough, and he hides his pain.  I finally calmed him down by asking him tons of questions about his day.  Thinking about it and explaining things to me kept him from hyperventilating.  Once we reached the ER, he was completely calm. 

We waited for about 10 minutes, and as soon as the nurse saw his leg, she said he would need stitches.  The doctor came in, and did a thorough exam since he fell quite a distance.  The nurse cleaned his leg, then Dylan had some X-Rays done.


While we waited for the results, another nurse brought in a big, remote control car for Dylan to take home.  He was so excited, and it took his mind off the upcoming stitches!

Dylan got staples in his head when he was a toddler, and got stitches in his forehead when he was 5, so he was a pro!  The worst part was the numbing process.  He was in so much pain, and it hurt me knowing that I couldn't take his pain away.  He didn't cry, but he gripped Grant's hand, and his face was frozen in a silent scream.  I swear, I held my breath until I saw his face relax.

Once his leg was numb, the doctor got to work.  Dylan was back to his normal, chatty self, and had a great time talking to the doctor.  Blood makes me light-headed, so I kept my face turned the entire time.  I saw his leg for a brief second while the doctor was cleaning the wound, and that was enough.  Think melon baller to the leg with lots of fatty tissue hanging out.  Absolutely disgusting, and it hurt just looking at it!

Dylan was amazing during the entire stitching process, and the doctor even thanked him repeatedly for making his job so easy.  He was the same way when he was 5.  That kid amazes me with his bravery!


Thankfully, his leg wasn't broken or fractured!  Dylan was still in a lot of pain, and having trouble walking, so the doctor suspected he sprained his knee when he landed. After fitting him with a knee immobilizer, and crutches, we were finally able to leave!


After three very long and worrisome hours in the ER, we arrived home.  Dylan has to see his pediatrician in 1-2 days, see an orthopedic specialist in 3-5 days, and have his stitches removed in 10 days.  No gym is allowed for 2+ weeks, and he can't go to school tomorrow.  He is in the middle of taking PSSA's, but doctor's orders!

Dylan is still in a lot of pain, but he's hiding it well. I'm praying he heals very quickly!

The doctor in the ER told him he's lucky he got away with only these injuries, and he's right. It could have been so much worse.  He fell at least 6-8 feet. We're so thankful he's okay!

Moral of the story?  No more climbing trees!!!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Motherhood in March

Once upon a time, I used to be able to document my everyday.

Those days are long gone.  I may no longer be able to keep up with my 365 project, but I still pull out my camera most days.  I love being able to document my days with my family.  I love sharing the joy, the frustration, the laughs, the tears, and the craziness.

One day, in the not so distant future, I will look back on these moments, and I will be filled with pride.  I won't remember the tears, the stress, the messes, or the frustration.  All I will see is their happiness and the incredible love they have for one another! I'm certain that on that day in the future, I will be wishing it all back. Every single moment.


I want to remember... Dylan and Lexie race up the steps after school to see their baby brother. enthusiastic Liam gets about spaghetti night. innocent they all look as they sleep.
...Lily's newest obsession with making a funny face during pictures and how she shouts out "FUNNY FACE" then poses. Liam rests one cheek on his shoulder and grins up at me.
...Liam's very rare crying fits and how he puts just as much passion into his crying as he does with his smiles.
...Liam's toothy grin and those little "shark teeth" on the bottom. Lexie cuddles up to her American Girl doll, her blankie, and her BunBun every single night.
...Lily's obsession with wearing swimsuits around the house and how she requests Elsa or Frozen clothing all the time!
...Liam's tiny "starfish" hands. Dylan used to twirl my hair when he was a baby,  how he recently had to get a haircut because he started twirling his own hair, and how, every so often, he reaches up and twirls my hair for just a few seconds. It's the only bit of little kid left inside him. Lexie insists on teaching Lily every single day after school. She better become a teacher when she grows up! Liam's face lights up when he sees Dylan, Lexie, and Lily.
...Lily's epic black eye. Liam loves to put on hats, and even tries to wear toy pots and pans as hats! Dylan tries to mimic his dad in every way, and how he takes an interest in Grant's favorite things. tiny Liam looks in our arms. much Lexie loves her hamster, Coco, and how much I love the optical illusion picture of the hamster blending in with the dog on Lexie's pajamas.  It totally looks like a strange hamster bear creature. motherly Lexie is with Liam. Liam looked in Dylan's hand-me-downs from 10 years ago! I kept some of my favorite outfits of Dylan's and I love putting them on Liam.  Same goes for Lily wearing Lexie's hand-me-downs!
...the incredible bond my each of my kids have with one another.  I love watching it grow right before my eyes. Liam cages himself in with Dylan's wrestling arena. Liam's favorite spot is under the kitchen table.
...all the snuggling sessions, laughter, and love.
...those four incredible smiles that keep me going, even when times are tough. 

March was more than just St. Patrick's Day, World Down Syndrome Day, and birthday parties. The "everyday" moments were every bit as special as the exciting moments!

Motherhood is an incredible journey, and I'm so thankful I was chosen to be Dylan, Lexie, Lily, and Liam's mom.