Two years ago I became a mama...your mama. Two whole years we've been blessed with you, Kai. You have truly amazed us in so many ways but one thing I always come back to is how sweet and loving you are. Your hugs, kisses, and I love you's melt my heart. You are definitely a rough and tough little boy a lot of the time and are a big bundle of energy but at the end of the day, you always ask me for a kiss and a hug before you lay down for bed. I softly close your door with tears in my eyes every night...tears of joy...because you are my son.
This was a BIG year for you! We started it off by taking you to Disney World for the first time! You met Mickey and it was one of the most magical memories I've ever had. You had so much fun going on the rides and you loved eating all the yummy snacks...churros, Mickey pretzels, and Dole Whips were you're favorites...the classics! Your favorite ride this time around was Frozen Ever After at Epcot, which is very fitting because Frozen aka Elsa as you call it, is one of your favorite movies.
Speaking of movies...your all time favorite movie is Cars. We watch it almost every day. You not only love Disney's Cars but ALL cars. They are your favorite toy. You have an awesome Hot Wheels collection and are slowly getting a good collection of large Tonka trucks. Cars is probably your favorite word, too. You yell "CARS!" at any opportunity that you can and it never fails to make me smile. Ironically enough, our song "Find Everything" by Brad Paisley is from the movie Cars. We picked this as our song back when you were only 1 month old. You know this song by heart now, too. Every time it comes on you come over to me and grab my hand so we can dance to "our song."
You started walking at 15 months and said your first real words at 18 months. You love to talk and by now are saying some full sentences. One of my favorites is "I want to watch Star Wars!" You say "I love you" all the time, too, and it fills my heart right up.
We had a blast this past summer. You took swimming lessons where both me and your dad got to swim with you once a week. You had so much fun playing in the water that we even got you a little kiddie pool to play in out in our backyard. We probably played in it almost every day of the summer. We went to some carnivals over the summer and you discovered your love of funnel cake and ice cream, too!
Fall is your favorite season though. You LOVE pumpkins (orange is your favorite color, by the way), and you kept calling them balls all fall long. You eat pumpkin right out of the can and pumpkin pancakes are probably your favorite food...aside from blueberries. Blueberries are definitely your favorite food. You also loved going apple picking this year and picked the cutest little apples off the trees at Apple Holler. You were Boo from Monsters Inc for Halloween and we went trick or treating for the first time this year! Your favorite candy is Reese...a boy after my own heart!
We took you to your first movie this year, too, which was Toy Story 4! You were so captivated by it that we took you a few more times after that to see some Disney classics like Peter Pan and The Little Mermaid. The most exciting movie we've seen with you so far though is Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. The joy your dad felt being able to see this movie with you in theaters was incredible. As soon as the movie started you were so excited and he read the rolling credits to you just like he always dreamed of doing with his son one day. You made that dream come true for him and it was so magical. You love Star Wars so much now and ask to watch it all the time. Any time we're watching it, you hum the opening song and it's the cutest thing ever. Your favorite characters are BB-8, R2D2, and Chewbacca...or Chew Chew as you like to call him.
Honestly though, my favorite moments with you are just the day to day ones. Every day after you wake up from your nap, we have a snack together. This past fall we started having apple cider together and now that it's winter we've started having hot chocolate together. I call them our hot chocolate parties. It is my favorite time of the day. Just spending quality time with you while we sip our hot coco and you play with all your toys in your room.
The biggest thing of this past year though is you became a big brother. You have taken on your role as Finn's big brother like a champ. Even before he was born you were so loving to him. You always gave my belly raspberries and would talk about "baby" all the time. You were so excited to meet him when he was first born and always asked to hold him. You went through a short period of jealousy, which is only natural, but you hardly feel that way anymore. You love Finn so much now, I can just tell. Every morning we both go in to his room and wake him up for the day. You always wait for me to pick him up so you can give him a hug and kiss before you run off to play. You bring him cars to share and always ask him to play with you. I didn't think it was possible to love you more, but seeing you as a big brother makes me love you a billion times more. You truly are the sweetest little boy in the whole wide world.
Thank you for making me a mama two years ago, Kai. Being your mama is the biggest honor of my life. I love you my sweet little boy, I love you with all my heart.
Happy February everyone! We had such a fun weekend this past weekend thanks to getting lucky with some decent weather! Who would have thought we would have had 50 degree weather + sunshine in early February!? Well thanks to the wonderful sunshine, we had a little family day on Saturday. We did a bunch of random things like go to Ikea, ABT, and Trader Joe's. Caleb and I just took turns randomly picking places we wanted/needed to go, which was so fun. On Sunday, we went to the Chicago Botanic Garden and took some photos of Kai for his 2nd birthday. I can't wait to load them on to my computer, edit them, and share them with all of you on here!
However, today is all about our little Finn Bug! He is already 2 months old! I can't believe how quickly this newborn phase is going with Finn. He is such a wonderful little baby, and we are so in love with him. Here's our monthly recap on all things Finn...
Weight: 12.5 lbs
Height: 23 in
You are growing so fast, little man! You gained another 2 lbs in the last month! You're a champion eater and love Mama's milk. You mostly nurse but take a bottle from Dad at night before bed and for your dream feed. You've started sleeping through the night from 11:30pm till 7am! You made this transition all on your own at 5 weeks. You nap so well, too, and it makes you such a happy baby.
You LOVE your big brother and he loves you, too! Kai will always come in to your room with me to wake you up in the morning and from your afternoon nap. We both rub your belly and say hi and after I pick you up, Kai gives you a hug, a kiss, and tells you he loves you before running off to play. You smile at him all the time and always seem to calm down whenever he comes around. He always tells you "don't cry" and you're really good at listening to him ;). You're also still Wrigley's favorite right now and he's always there to protect you. He lays next to your crib and loves to cuddle with us when I'm nursing you.
We finally found "our song." We were having tummy time and listening to our fun little playlist on Spotify. The song “You’ll be in My Heart” came on and it always reminds me of your grandpa and Papa. I always get a little sad when I listen to it. You kept smiling at me while I sang it to you and I told you this can’t be our song because it makes me too sad…it’s saved for someone else in my heart, I’m sorry. It got me thinking though that I really wish I could figure out what our song was going to be. I didn't want to rush it, of course, but it had been on my mind lately to really pay attention to some songs and see how they resonated with us. For some reason, I started thinking of the song “I See the Light” from Tangled and longed for it to come on. I had this feeling it could be a great song for us but I wasn’t completely sure. Magically, it came on next…I couldn’t believe it. I sang the whole song to you and you smiled bigger than you ever had before…it’s almost like you wanted to laugh. I heard myself sing the words, “and now the fog has lifted” and it was so true. The horrible fog I was walking around in after losing your grandpa had lifted when you were born. You’ve brought me back in to the light and realizing that, that became our song…and it is so perfect.
We baby wear in a sling or in a wrap every single day. We snuggle up during your morning nap after breakfast and I read to you and your brother. Having you close enough to kiss is the most wonderful feeling and you love it, too. You mold in to me so perfectly and I am truly cherishing these days with you. I also really love having tummy time with you! For the most part, you love it and have so much fun. You're already holding your head up by yourself with lots of control. You like to look around and when you see me, you give me the biggest smile. You also really love looking at photographs, specifically the ones we have on the wall behind our couch of Mama and Dad's wedding.
You are the sunshine and refreshing thing I needed in my life, Finn. I love you so, my tiny one, I love you so very much and these last two months have been the best yet.
Let's talk baby schedules today! We are of course doing Babywise with Finn since it worked so well for us with Kai. However, it's obviously not as simple this time around because we have to consider Kai's daily schedule on top of Finn's. Blending the boys' daily schedules has been like a fun little puzzle for me though and it's not as hard as you might think it would be. So I'm going to share our daily schedule with you today! Kai will be 2 years old at the end of this week and Finn is 8 weeks old. I am currently on maternity leave, too.
Kai + Finn's Daily Schedule
7:00am - Kai: Wake up, drink milk, play
7:05am - Finn: Wake up, diaper change
7:10am - Finn: Nurse
7:45am - Mama: Pump; Finn: Wake time (bassinet hangs)
8:00am - Kai: Diaper change/Breakfast
8:30am - Kai: Play; Finn: Sling nap
9:30am - Kai: Quiet time; Finn: Nurse
10:00am - Kai: TV time/play; Finn: Diaper change/get ready for the day
10:15am - Finn: Wake time (rocker)
10:30am - Kai: Get ready for the day
10:45am - Finn: Crib nap
11:00am - Kai: Outside time
11:30am - Kai: Lunch
12:00pm - Kai: Play
12:30pm - Kai: Clean + cozy time (clean up, diaper change, read a book)
12:45pm - Kai: Nap; Finn: Nurse
1:15pm - Finn: Diaper change/Wake time (outside time, tummy time, read a book)
2:00pm - Finn: Crib nap
3:30pm - Kai: Le goûter (snack)/play; Finn: Nurse
4:00pm - Finn: Diaper change/Wake time (play mat time)
4:45pm - Finn: Crib nap
5:00pm - Kai: Diaper change/play
6:00pm - Kai: Dinner; Finn: Nurse
6:30pm - Finn: Diaper change/Wake time (swing)
7:00pm - Kai: Dessert
7:15pm - Kai: Clean up; Finn: Crib nap
7:20pm - Kai: Bath (every other night)
7:30pm - Kai: Get ready for bed (vitamins, brush teeth, PJs)
7:45pm - Kai: Read, prayers
8:00pm - Kai: Bedtime
8:30pm - Finn: Bottle; Mama: Pump
8:50pm - Finn: Bath (every 3 days)
9:00pm - Finn: Get ready for bed (vitamins, moisturize, PJs)
9:05pm - Finn: Read, prayers
9:15pm - Finn: Bedtime
11:00pm - Finn: Bottle; Mama: Pump
So as you can see, it's a lot. I constantly feel like I'm doing something for a little person but it works. Kai finds so much comfort in sticking to a schedule so we try our hardest to follow this daily routine for him every day. There's always some variation and the timing is never perfect throughout the day, but it's pretty close. The key factors for Kai are his daily wake time at 7am, quiet time at 9:30am, a little bit of outside time before lunch, and a solid nap between 12:30 and 1pm. I've also been very diligent about having Kai clean up all his toys whenever we are done playing in a certain area. I feel like this is teaching him good habits and it also helps me to keep big messes under control all day long. So by the end of the day, the house is pretty tidy and it makes the nightly clean up that Caleb and I do much quicker.
For Finn, I try to stick to these feeding times and nap times as best as possible. If he wakes up early from a nap and it's within 15 minutes of a feeding time I will feed him early because I know he is waking up from hunger. However, if it's before that, which is honestly rare, he usually just needs his pacifier or to get a burp out. Finn has been a very good sleeper so far. He didn't need any help with dropping the middle of the night feedings and was able to merge the 2 middle of the night feedings (1am + 4am) to just 1 middle of the night feeding at 3 weeks. He then dropped the 1 middle of the night feed (3am) at 5 weeks all on his own. He was over 10 lbs at his 1 month mark, so we felt it was safe for him to sleep longer stretches from this point forward. He would barely wake up at 3am and it was really hard to get him to eat at that time. So one night I decided to experiment and see how long he could go. He made it all the way till 7am within 3 days of trying and I never looked back. I'm glad I allowed him to merge early as now we didn't create a habit of him wanting to eat in the middle of night. He clearly doesn't need it and has done a great job at rearranging his ounces throughout the day to ensure he is getting enough milk all day. We bottle feed him before bed and for his dream feed because he was a very sleepy baby early on and would fall asleep at the breast a lot. We found that bottle feeding him for these feeds worked best for ensuring he was getting enough to eat in order to sleep well at night. This definitely helped him find his days vs nights. Plus, we need him to be able to take a bottle for when I go back to work, so we like to offer it to him every day so he doesn't reject it when my maternity leave is over.
Both boys are very familiar with our daily routine now and can tell what's coming next. They both have great days if we stick to the schedule and it also provides Caleb and I a sense of comfort. We know what to do with each of them and when and we also get a nice little window during afternoon nap time to have some time to ourselves. I'm able to get some things done around the house and take a short nap if I need one, too. We get all of our cleaning done after the boys go to bed and this is when Caleb will go to the gym or we'll spend some quality time together. Having the schedule also helps us with when we need to run errands or if we want to go out and do something fun as a family. We know when the boys need to eat and when they need to sleep, so it makes planning things so much easier.
Hopefully this helps anyone that needs help managing two different schedules or if you're about to add a second little bundle of joy to your family, too! Make sure you like the Tiny Dapper Fox Facebook page so you never miss a post!
For me personally, a new year always motivates me to organize and refresh our house. Out with the old and in with the new, right? I like to go room by room and purge everything we don't need, spot clean hard to get to areas that don't get as much attention during our normal week to week cleaning, and then re-organize everything based on our current needs. Having a baby and a toddler though makes it difficult to just hit it hard for a few days though and have it all done, so I've decided to give myself a week per room for the next 14 weeks and I want to invite you all to join me! Here is the breakdown I will be following for the next few months. I already started with week 1 last week but I believe this is good to start any time of the year, so instead of listing dates I'm only going to list week numbers.
The routine I have for organizing these rooms is a modified Konmari method. If you're unfamiliar with the Konmari method, you can check out Marie Kondo's book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. I modify the method though by taking everything out in sections versus everything in the entire room. If I took everything out in a room, I just wouldn't have time to go through it all and organize it before Kai could get to all of it. So for instance, in the photo you see above, I took out all the dishes from this section of cabinets and went through every item and separated them in to 3 different piles; keep, trash, donate. I set aside everything I'm going to keep, throw away anything that is broken or unworthy of giving a new home, and set aside items that I plan to bring to Goodwill. After everything is out of the cabinet, I wipe out the cabinet and clean any really dirty spots. Then I organize all the items I'm keeping in to smaller piles to help me figure out a good placement in the cabinet. This is especially helpful for drawers, like a junk drawer or large utensils drawer. At the end, I put everything back and move on to the next section until I run out of time that day. I finished our kitchen last week and it has motivated me so much to keep it cleaner and organized. I moved some things around, too, because over time, life changes and you may need items in a different section of the kitchen now compared to last year. For example, I moved all our baby bottles and food jars to the cabinet with all our kids plates, bowls, and cups. We had the bottles and jars in a different cabinet since we weren't using them last year, but now that Finn is here, we obviously use the bottles frequently and will be using the jars again before we know it. It's nice to have it all in one place and it looks so organized all together.
The whole process is so satisfying and I'm looking forward to doing the rest of the house! Next up for us is the pantry + fridge! I'll be doing periodic check-ins on here and showing plenty of progress on my Instagram account, so make sure you're following along there, too. I hope you all have a great rest of the week and happy 2020!
Happy Monday and happy first full week of 2020! We had a fun weekend with our little fam and celebrated Caleb's 30th birthday this past weekend! He turned 30 on Saturday and he chose taking the boys to see the new Star Wars movie as what he wanted to do to celebrate. It was such a special day and activity for him to experience with the boys. He's loved Star Wars his whole life, so for him to be able to take his boys to see one of the movies in theaters...let alone the last one of the saga, was truly a dream come true for him. I definitely teared up at the beginning watching him snuggle with Kai and read the opening scroll to him. ALSO, the movie was fantastic...people are crazy for not liking it! We ended the day with vanilla cupcakes w/ caramel buttercream frosting that Kai and I made and they were so delicious! I'll definitely be sharing the recipe on here soon.
Today I wanted to share with you all about Wrigley's "new" dog food that he's been eating. A while back, I had done a post on the food that Wrigley use to eat and ended up taking it down and putting a note up in a different post about how we were no longer feeding Wrigley that food due to the company dealing with lawsuits regarding their food. I'm not entirely sure what came of the lawsuits and if what consumers were suing them for was even true, but we didn't want to chance it regardless of the outcome. I'm happy to report that we've found Wrigley an incredible all natural dog food that he has been thriving on for the last year! We've been feeding him Redford Naturals Lamb & Potato and not only do we believe this is a healthy option for him but we can literally see it. He has more energy and just seems all around happier. We noticed a difference in him after just a few days of eating this food!
All the ingredients that is listed in this dog food is real. If you look at the list yourself, you'll be able to tell what each thing is, which I absolutely love. I want to know the things that Wrigley is consuming every day. This particular recipe that we feed Wrigley has lamb as the main ingredient followed by turkey meal, dried potatoes, brown rice, oatmeal, and dried peas. I personally love that this recipe has peas in it because peas are actually one of the best foods you can feed your dog! I found this out thanks to Kai dropping peas all over the floor and ensuring it was safe for Wrigley to eat them. Wrigley has never been a big fan of chicken so we sought out a blend that didn't have chicken in it and landed on the lamb. They have plenty of other options though including a chicken option and a salmon option.
GRAIN FREE vs REGULAR RECIPE
There's been a whole debate on whether or not we should be giving our dogs grain free dog food and I'm here to tell you that we should all be steering clear of grain free food for our pups. The only reason to give our dogs grain free dog food is if they have an allergy to grain. This advice is coming straight from multiple vets, including Wrigley's vet. Feeding our dogs grain free dog food can actually increase their risk for heart disease. Redford Naturals offers plenty of both types, grain free and regular, which is another reason I really like this brand. It caters to both groups and makes it easy for us to know that Wrigley is getting all the nutrients he really needs to live a long and healthy life.
WRIGLEY'S MEAL SCHEDULE
Wrigley gets 3 scoops of Redford Natural lamb food every day totaling 1 Cup of food per day. He gets a scoop for breakfast, lunch, and dinner but he tends to be a grazer. He goes back and forth all day long to grab some here and there, so we make it a point to always have some food in his dog bowl. We've taught Kai not to mess with it but on the occasion he does love to feed Wrigley, which is the cutest thing. Wrigley does get a decent amount of table food these days thanks to Kai's messiness but for the most part, this dog food is his main source of food during the day! He hasn't gained any weight since being on this food and has remained very healthy since switching over. Wrigley just turned 8 back in November.
I hope all of this was helpful for all you dog moms and dads! Just remember, if you plan on switching your dog's food, slowly wean them off their old food and on to their new food. If you can't do this for any reason, you can do a hard stop and offer pumpkin to help clear and reset their digestive system and then offer them the new food. If you’re interested in trying out Redford Naturals for your pup, you can purchase it at Pet Supplies Plus. It comes in a 4 lbs bag and a 28 lbs bag.
Be sure to follow me on Instagram for lots of cute pup photos!
I’m Diana; curator & author of Tiny Dapper Fox. Here you’ll find posts on motherhood, home life, travel, & fashion/beauty as well as City Guides for places all around the world. Make yourself cozy and let’s be friends!
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