July 28, 2011

No Paternity Test Needed

July 26, 2011

Lakes, Doctors and Inventions, oh my!

It has been a busy and eventful three days in the Evans household!


Friday night Chris and I left for Pickwick Lake for the weekend, while Bug stayed behind with her Grammie and Grampie. I had a little bit of anxiety over leaving her. It certainly was not the first time she has spent the night her grandparents, but it was the farthest I had ever been away from her in a year.

Despite some battery troubles, we had a great day out on the lake! We spent most of our time swimming around our favorite cove and came back to the cabin happily exhausted and quite sunburned!

See the rainbow in the upper right corner?

The next morning after breakfast at Cafe St. Claire with my parents we went to a store next to the Pickwick Supermarket called "Spoiled Rotten". Evie got an adorable lobster pinafore for this summer and a sweet little lady bug pinafore for next summer! Then we headed down to a little chotszky shop, where Chris found a pink onesie that says Lake Baby on it, so of course we had to get it for her and order one for next year!

After we got back home, we both took super quick showers and went to meet Chris' parents for sushi and supper at Osaka! We were both so excited to see Evie! I was so happy I didn't even mind when she chewed on my shirt and completely drenched the sleeve and neck in drool! After supper, Chris' mom showed us all the clothes she got Evie on her recent trip to Toronto! She got her a ton of JoeFresh onesie pajamas! I found out about this brand when I received a set of the onesie PJ's from a friend during my KK's baby shower. Evie has since outgrown those onesies even though they are 3-6 months. She came back with enough PJ's to outfit Evie until she is 2 years old! I am so excited because these are my favorite PJ's for Evie they are so soft and just the right weight of material. I LOVE them!

When we got back from dinner we found a HUGE box sitting outside our door. I knew it had to be a baby gift since I had not ordered anything recently. We saw on the return address label that it was from Chris' Aunt Sue and Uncle Addison. I knew right away that it would be something sweet and adorable, something we had not registered for, something a little fancy and something very special for Evie to treasure always (that is just how Aunt Sue and Uncle Addison roll). I was right. Inside the box was a beautiful, tiny china tea set for Evie. It is absolutely precious! It made my inner girly girl sigh. I am already dreaming of the tiny cookies I'll make for playing Tea Party.

Monday we had the pleasure of taking Evie to get her 4 month old shots. She was actually really good. She is 16lbs and 6 ounces, and 25 inches long. That puts her in the 90th percentile for weight and the 75th for height. She perfectly demonstrated her new found ability to roll over, and grinned at Dr. Fes when he said she was a good sleeper. Evie even smiled at the nurse just before she gave her the shots. She cried for a little bit, but not long. She mostly slept the rest of the day. I gave her some Tylenol so she didn't run fever, and other than that she was just her perfect smiley self. After we got home I downloaded Babywise II to my kindle and started reading it. It's really for ages 5-15 months but I'd like to have a firm grasp on the content before she reaches that point (I plan on doing a whole post on babywise at some point in the future, but in case you are wondering, chris and I LOVE this parenting approach.). During her 4 o clock feeding she just didn't seem really interested in eating so I decided to try some rice cereal again. Lo and behold, it worked. Well, it kinda worked. There were no tears, no grimaces and no screams. I am not sure how much she actually swallowed BUT she seemed to enjoy it a little more and actually opened her mouth for the spoon a few times. So, progress. I'm not trying to rush her or anything so I am just gonna try it a few times a week until she gets the hang of it and not stress about it. I am also looking into the concept of Baby Led Weaning but that might not be the ticket for us.

Now. About this invention. You heard me mention that Evie rolled over for Dr. Fesmire. Over the weekend (go figure that I am gone) she just figured out rolling over from her back to tummy.

Yay! Except she has not mastered tummy to back yet. Being my child, of course she learns opposite. So in the night, she will flip from back to tummy. Not a big deal, except she hates to be on her tummy. So since she can't get back over, she cries and wakes Mommy & Daddy up to come flip her back over. Well, this is not going to work. She's not hungry, she doesn't want social visits in the middle of the night and quite frankly we have enjoyed the last 6 weeks of sleeping 11 hours straight. And we aren't talking about just up once, this is about three times So Chris Googled and came up with this:

This is a towel that is duct taped to her mattress pad. We put the sheet back over it and laid her in the snuggly little center. She slept like a baby (haha) and so did we. I actually called the pediatrician today to make sure this was ok and was laughingly told it was fine. The nurse said it was better than letting her create the same bad sleep habits that we worked so hard to get rid of.

We really had a wonderful weekend, and even though she had to get shots, we enjoyed the extra time with our little sweetness!

I hope everyone else out there had a fabulous weekend as well!

July 22, 2011

4 Months!

My darling Evie Bug, you are four months old today! I say that with a little tinge of sadness. How quickly you are growing up! You want to put everything (except rice cereal) in your mouth. You love to chew on your baby spoons! Your favorite toy right now is a little bear lovie from your Auntie Leslie. We had it on a shelf for awhile and I noticed you staring at it every morning so last Saturday I took it down and handed it to you. You said a happy "oooh" "aaah" and promptly began eating his nose! I'm going to be washing it a lot because you love to drool all over it. Last night after we rocked and snuggled for a long time, I looked through my pictures on my iPhone, starting with the most recent and moving backward to the oldest. It was like watching your life in reverse! You are so big and so smart already, and I can't tell you how proud your Momma and Daddy are to be your parents!

Evelyn Grace: A Four Month Retrospective

July 20, 2011

Rice Cereal is Evie's Nemesis

Lately, we speak two words in hushed panicked tones, hoping that our little angel doesn't over hear us and somehow with her four month old reasoning skills deduce our evil plot:  RICE. CEREAL. Evie hates hates hates this stuff. Every time she sees the spoon coming towards her mouth that bottom lip pokes out and starts to quiver (I mean, could she be any more like her momma?). Should you find the courage to continue and bring the spoon to her mouth a look of total disgust will cross her face, attempt to put the spoon in her mouth and her faces squinches up and turns red. If you dare press on further and actually put some cereal in her mouth, you will soon hear the telltale eh, eh, ehs that preceed a major fit. Should you choose to continue down this dangerous path, you will be rewarded with a face full of rice cereal, big fat crocodile tears, a tomato faced baby and a hissy fit that includes, screaming, wailing, an accusing look in her eyes and arching her back in an attempt to get away from the terrible gruel that her mean momma is forcing upon her. I must confess I am weak. After trying about four times and getting the same response, I have given up. I HATE for her to get that upset. Sigh.

Anyone out there have a baby who hated rice cereal? I've been told in no uncertain terms by her pediatrician that rice cereal is strictly forbidden in the bottle. I can't tell if she doesn't like this in comparison to her bottle or if she hates the taste. I mean I know the rice cereal tastes gross, but formula isn't coconut cream pie flavored either (Yes, I have tasted both. What? I am an adventurous eater.). I got some green apple and banana flavored rice cereal at Kroger the other day so I guess we will try that. I can only hope she will like it better.

If you have any helpful tips please leave them here for me. I beg of you. I'm at my wits end...

July 18, 2011

Coming Home

One of the hardest adjustments I had to make as a new mom was to the whole not cooking and baking thing. What? I don't have time to cook anymore?

I was very used to making dinner for Chris and I almost every night (although I will admit there at the end we ate quite a bit of Abbay's Chicken Fried Steak because it was the only thing that I wanted!) and I baked most of our bread; oftentimes it would take us almost three weeks to go through one loaf of store bought bread. It was like total shock for me to not be able to cook and bake. In the past 17 weeks I have used store bought pizza crust 3 times AND a jar of store bought pizza sauce AND bought a thing of frozen Texas toast. That's not to say that using store bought is bad, I just prefer to make my own! Lately, I've been getting the itch to once again create food from scratch.

Anyway, yesterday I made bread again for the first time since Evie was born! This is our favorite bread recipe -- it makes a spectacular sandwich (a big one, the slices are thick so you need plenty of fillings to stand up to the bread), fantastic toast, even better French toast, makes one heck of a grilled cheese and is great as a stand alone snack. Mmmm. I'm getting hungry just thinking about it! Anyway, here is my mom's recipe for Cool Rise Bread -- oh and the best thing is that it makes two loaves so there is always one to give away! And I ADORE giving away my baked goods!

Cool Rise Bread

5-6 Cups of all purpose or bread flour
2 packets of yeast (not rapid rise) OR 4 1/2 tsp of yeast (if you have a jar like me)
1/2 cup of granulated sugar
1/2 tsp of salt
1 stick of butter softened
2 eggs at room temperature
1 1/2 cups VERY hot tap water
Oil (vegetable or canola -- not olive)

1) In a large mixing bowl combine 2 cups of flour, yeast, sugar and salt. Whisk together.

2) All at once, add butter, eggs and hot water. Using an electric mixer, beat on medium speed for about two minutes.

3) Using a wooden spoon to stir, add enough flour into the batter so that it forms a dough that just leaves the side of bowl.

4) Dump dough onto a well floured surface. Continue to knead in as much of the remaing flour until the dough is soft and smooth and no longer sticks to your hands. This should take at least 5 minutes and no longer than 10. I usually reach this stage at about 7-8 minutes of kneading.

5) Divide dough into two balls, and coat with the oil (don't be stingy with the oil!) Put the oil covered dough into two bowls, cover with saran wrap, and then cover with a hot damp towel. Allow to rise for 20 minutes.

6) After 20 minutes punch dough down and shape into loaves (I do this by making each dough ball into a roughly rectangular shape then fold the two long ends in to the middle and repeat with the short ends) place into well oiled bread pans.

7) Re-cover loaves with saran wrap and a warm damp towel. Place in refrigerator and allow to rise for at least 2 and no longer than 24 hours.

8) Remove and let stand at room temperature for about 20 minutes. Preheat your oven to 350F. Bake loaves for 45-55 minutes. Once tops are golden brown they are done.

9) Remove and while still warm brush tops with melted butter OR save the time and just rub them all over with a stick of butter!

IF you can stand the anticipation -- wait for bread to cool, then slice and enjoy, however, I can never wait and I must eat a slice of this bread warm from the oven slathered with real butter! mmmm! Good!

Making this bread is a little bit like coming home for me. I learned from my momma how to make it, and she makes it each Christmas and Thanksgiving. It even smells and tastes like home. I am looking forward to the day I get to teach Evie how to bake bread. I'm sure we will emerge from the kitchen covered from head to toe in flour and she will get to experience the joy of watching simple ingredients turn into mmmm's and ahhh's as eyes roll heavenward in appreciation of something she made -- and one day she will make bread all on her own and it'll be like coming home.

July 14, 2011

Oh my heart...

This is a picture of Evie and me, when she was only one month old. Three months later she is different in a myriad of bittersweet ways I never could have imagined. She is interactive, smiley and very talkative. She no longer snuggles up to me this way; her main goal is to see the world around her. This single moment captured reminds me why, when I follow the other rules so precisely, I rock my girl to sleep at night. In those quiet moments at dusk I rest my chin on her head, breathe in the sweet scent of her just washed baby hair and pull her as close to me as I can, wishing just for a second I could take her back inside my body and once again be all that she needs. Each night in her twilit room Mommy rocks her to sleep, Daddy wraps his arms around his girls and we both murmur to Evie how much we love her. This sleepy quiet time before bed and morning smiles are the times I look forward to each day. My favorite moments with Evie. I treasure and enjoy them now because each marks the beginning or end of another day and a step closer to when she won't need or want Mommy to rock her to sleep at night. I love you beyond words or measure my little baby bug, my heart is simply full from you.

July 13, 2011

My Favorite Things

Lately I've been really happy. I've been really really happy. Being so happy has made me reflect on all the little things in my life that I love! I thought I would share some of them with you. Some are parenting related some are not...

1. My most very favorite people, Chris and Evie. My two favorite faces in the whole world. Lately, I've found myself rushing in the mornings to get ready so I can wake Evie up. I can't wait to see her smile.

2. My furbabies! Oh they are such trouble! 4 dogs and 2 cats!

This is a super old picture. You can tell because I haven't had these floors since late January 2010.

3. My LASH FUSION mascara! I looooove this mascara! I won't leave the house without about five coats of it on! Well, I do leave the house without it sometimes, but not usually! 

4. Baby Einstein's Take Along Tunes. This is the best thing ever! My friend Brooke got it for my baby shower and promised it would be a life saver. She was right! Evie loves it, and I think it might be baby crack. It is guaranteed to silence the wailing at just about any moment... just don't stop pressing the button! If you are expecting or expecting to expect any time soon, register for one of these or buy one.

5. GAP super skinny jeans. I am not super skinny but I love these jeans! I do have to roll the cuff at the bottom due to my lacking in height but I don't care!

6. These bottle labels! They are the best! I have the pink ones and ordered the blue ones for my friend Libba's sweet baby boy Leo! I am excited for some of our other good friends to have their babies so I can get more!

7. Chlorox GreenWorks Dishwashing Liquid. Ok weird I know. But this stuff is like 97% natural, it smells so good, does a great job on grease AND I feel comfortable washing Evie's bottles with it! Mmm! Love it!

8. America's Got Talent! Chris and I got hooked on this show last Summer when I was 1st trimester pregnant, sick as a dog and felt like too much crap to really do anything other lay around and watch TV. We are enjoying it this year, but it really represents our "mommy & daddy only" time at the end of the day. Evie goes to bed around 8:30 and we get two wonderful hours all to ourselves to hang out with each other, talk about our day and just enjoy each other's company. Lately we have been watching AGT during this time.

9) The side braid. Praise the Lord for a hair trend that works with my crazy curly thick long hair! I actually watched a tutorial on how to do this and I have gotten pretty good at it! It's also great timing since Evie has recently learned how to grab things and occasionally it is my hair. I'm not chopping off my locks anytime soon so this is perfect for keeping everything out of baby's reach! Plus it looks nice with my hair pulled back and up, left long and curly (which I can now do thanks to Angel and her magic Keratin) or in a loose curly pony tail.

10) Evie's Fisher Price Rain Forest Jumperoo. She's been bouncing since she was about 2.5 months old and she always wants to stand up and be held and bouncing. This thing gives me at least thirty minutes of "hands-free-get-stuff-done" time. Evie just THINKS we got it for her...