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  • Archive for November, 2014

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    Chris and I have always wanted to harvest our own Christmas tree but since we don’t live in northern climes with fir trees and acres of our own forested woodland we made do with going to Spring Creek Growers for our first Christmas tree in this house. I haven’t decorated for Christmas in over five years, mostly because I’m too lazy to get the decorations out and then put them back up again a month later. Since we now have a little one in the house we figured it would be good to enjoy the holiday season a little bit more and opted to get our decorations out and get a Christmas tree for the year.

    We had driven by Spring Creek Growers multiple times and have always said that it would be cool to get a tree from there and I reminded Chris today that we needed to go there for our first tree. I wasn’t expecting it to get as busy as the place was, but there were quite a few people out cutting down their own trees. The two main trees grown on the property are Leyland cypress and Virginia pine. There were Fraser firs from North Carolina in a tent out front for those wanting the more traditional tree. We opted for the Virginia pine and picked one out in the field. Next year I think we’ll have to indulge in the hay ride since Forest will be older and might enjoy the ride. As you see above there were a few farm animals and also sprinkled about the property were antique farm equipment such as corn huskers. It was definitely a kid friendly atmosphere!

    It’ll be a fun tradition to continue on throughout the years!

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    New winter hat means winter exploring in the garden!

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    Digging through my Florida photos from last March still. This post had been sitting in my drafts folder for months and months. I was able to steal a few moments while Forest was sleeping to process the photos and get this up to share. This lovely little orchid was very accessible and growing by the side of the road. Sometimes you don’t have to dig too far in Fakahatchee Strand to come up with something so lovely.

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    I meant to get this out earlier this week, but here we are, days later. Oh well.

    Week 10 started off well, things were progressing in the sleep department. We were working our way up from 5-6 hours a night in the first stretch to a wonderful 7 hour stretch and then *bam* serious regression. In the last two weeks it has been consistently 2-3 hour stretches with one eye crunching 1.5 hour awakening just after being put down for the night. Last Thursday I got 4.5 hours before he woke up but that has been the longest stretch in the last two weeks. I did some reading online and had known about the 4 month sleep ‘regression’ (not really regression as babies are really progessing in other manners, ie: growing and developing) but I wondered if it had come early at 2 months for me. I’d also heard about a book called Wonder Weeks at the the breastfeeding group at the hospital but never checked it out. Once I looked online at it I realized that Forest just might be in a phase and going through some new growth developments. That and it got cold recently so I thought maybe he wasn’t sleeping because of the cold. Who knows? I didn’t end up getting the book but Chris recently got his first smart phone (the first for both of us—I refuse to get one, still) and had him download the Wonder Weeks app.

    The sleep regression did coincide with several developmental milestones with Forest. The week my mom spent with Forest he began babbling and talking back a lot more and doing a lot more playing. Then he started really going to town chowing on his hands when he could get them in his mouth and also experimenting with the gag reflex by sticking his fingers in further than he should! Then one day when Chris’ brother and sister-in-law were in for a visit we noticed Forest focusing on the mobile that hangs over the MamaRoo. Previous to this he hadn’t focused so heavily on anything all that much, though we’d noticed he’d focus on a photo or picture and could see longer distances. But this was an out and out “Wow, look at that! I wonder if I can get it?” kind of focusing. See video below! To coincide with that Chris’ mom noticed last week that Forest was holding his hand in front of his face and focusing in on it, too. And with all of that he did his first laugh! We were giving him a bath and Chris began splashing water on him and out they came, two in a row. Of course that didn’t get repeated when we dug out the camera and it hasn’t really happened since. He still gives little cooing smiles but not the hearty laugh of that one evening.

    As far as the sleeping goes, I’m hoping it returns to longer sleeps soon. I started sleeping with him on the couch after his first wakeup or two because it was just easier to hold him and nurse him when he woke. He’s always had two hour wakeups after his first initial long sleep at night, so it hasn’t been worth it necessarily to get him back in the cradle without stirring and me back in bed only to wake up again a short while later. I’m hoping this week to start transitioning back to his cradle more often and hopefully he’ll end up sleeping longer stretches soon. I don’t know…I don’t get it! We were so close to sleeping nearly through the night and I can do a 4 hour stretch of sleep with two hour stretches after much better than every 1.5-2 hours…those take a toll on me! I dream of that 7 hour stretch again. For the cold nights we bought a fleece Halo sleepsack which I think has helped, but I wonder if the corner where the cradle is might be too drafty. The lack of sleep finally wore on me last week and I opted to stay at work during lunch instead of coming home to see Forest who was being watched by Chris’ mom. I ate my lunch and then laid out in the floor of my office and took a 30 minute nap. I should have skipped eating and slept the entire hour. I know some of you are probably wondering why Chris doesn’t just get up, but I decided weeks ago it wasn’t worth making him get up when he turns all the lights on to change a diaper (I just turn on a night lamp that illuminates under our dressers) and Forest really just needs me to feed, though half the time these days he’s not necessarily eating every time he wakes up or if he does it’s short and he’s back asleep. In all, right now it doesn’t make sense for Chris to make a racket getting up when I can quietly move around with the baby and get things done as smoothly as possible. When Forest is a little bigger and isn’t necessarily nursing at night, that’s when I’ll be calling on Chris to alternate those wakeups where Forest needs soothing back to sleep.

    I guess those were the big things for 10 and 11 weeks! Now I just need to work on his tummy time more so I can get that elusive rollover completed. It’s been close a few times but we haven’t practiced enough for it to happen yet. Oh, one other big thing was boxing up his 0-3 month clothes and moving on to 3-6 month clothes! So sad to know that period of time is gone!

    Here’s some photos from the 10 and 11 week period:

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    +Patrice and Justin are hiking the Te Araroa trail in New Zealand…follow them!
    +You Know You’re A Hiker When…
    +The Girl Who Goes Alone
    +What Going For A Personal Record Can Teach You
    +Raw Chocolate Pie
    +Panic At The Drive-Thru—I had a similar experience in the Chick-Fil-A drive thru a few weeks ago. My word of advice, don’t take a sleeping baby thru a drive thru at lunch time where you’ll be jammed in by other cars. Just don’t.
    +I painted a single leaf
    +Cow Buck
    +Food For the PCT
    +Northeastern Sierra – Finding Fall
    +Fun, Fearless, Female, and … Feckless?: Cosmopolitan.com and #Casey Nocket
    +The Serial Podcast…excellent podcast brought to you by those who put on This American Life. It’s a weekly serial podcast with a reporter researching the true story of a murder back in the late 90s in Maryland.
    +Atomic Moms Podcast—because I’ve turned into the person who listen to mom podcasts and reads (some) mom blogs.

    Anything good around the web you want to share?

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    The overgrown and weedy section near the bees.

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    When I stole 10 minutes the other day to wander around the yard I also tinkered in the garden for a few minutes. My time spent enjoying the garden is practically non-existent now that the weather has turned cooler, the daylight is short, and I have returned to work. Weekends are spent trying to catch up on chores in the house and keeping the baby fed, changed, and happy. Gardening? What is that? Despite being a little sad that winter is coming, I’m glad at the same time—I can just abandon the garden and not worry about it until spring. I can’t even think about it right now….except I’m running into the typical issue many Creatives have, which is that I want to Do All The Things—which means I want to do all of my creative endeavors at the same time. But, that’s a post for another day…’cause Momma ain’t got time for Doing All The Things.

    So, the garden…it is quite lovely in its mid-autumn downward spiral and it seems winter is approaching earlier than usual with some temperatures hitting the freezing mark already. The grey days are already here. This is good and bad…will probably be more bad for me this year since I won’t be outside enjoying the grey days and instead will probably stew inside far too often on the grey days. I’m not a stew indoors in the winter type of person—yes I enjoy my cozy and cuddly days and weekends but they need to be interspersed with trips outside to get keep my mind from going insane.

    At least, though, we’re not in the northern climes where snow has already reached—that would just be too much!

    (Ok, almost silent…the cooler weather has allowed me to get closer to the hive these days without risking getting stung, which in turn means more bee photos!)

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    I spend most of my commute to and from work oogling at the colors on the trees. There are a couple of sassafrass trees near the office that are a glorious apple red tempting me to soak in them, if one could soak in trees. Peak fall color is here now and quickly passing. I don’t get to wander around my yard much these days but I stole 10 minutes the other day and wandered around to see what I was missing. With what seems to be an early freeze this year (first one last night—but not a killing freeze at least) winter may be rolling in sooner than I wanted…not that I’ve been able to savor it as much this year.

    Alas, the color is pretty spectacular even if it is on the subtle side.

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    Just a new weekly meme. Something for me to share a Forest photo and to write a little something here.

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