Thursday, April 30, 2015

Colette: 9 Months

 {9 Months}
9 Months
-Eating everything in sight.
-Always on the move, and pulling herself up.
-A few seconds of standing (without holding on).
-No longer crying when strangers look at her. 
-Climbing stairs...awesome. 
-Plays independently. Love that. 
-Wants to do anything Amelia is doing.

I should do a nice long post since Coco is 9 months old. However, I'm crabby and have a migraine so I'm not interested in staring at the computer screen. I will save a nice fluffy Coco is fantastic post for another day. Here are her monthly pajama pictures. 

I put this picture up so you can see how red her hair is in the sunlight. I love it. 
Always standing and always smiling. 

Friday, April 17, 2015

Colette: 37 Weeks

 37 Weeks
-Learned how to clap.
-Mimics everything. Especially when I shake my head.
-Still does kissy face for the camera. 
-Pulling herself up to standing.
-Sleeps 13 hours at night. Horrible napper.
-Survived our week with Brian out of town.
-Loves the bath.
-Loves loves being outside. Spring!!!

We have survived a week on our own. Brian travelled to Montreal this week for work and I held down the fort at home. Since I am a stay at home mom it wasn't too crazy. I was a bit bored at night and was in need of some adult conversation for sure.

I have to keep this post short though because I have a naked potty training toddler, an infant that wont nap, and a blasted headache from a cold. If Brian doesn't get home soon I will no longer be able to call this a successful week. 

Here's a kissy face picture for the road. 

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Potty Training & Spring Fun

Well I have found my Mt. Everest. My parenting Everest. Potty training is the WORST. I had no idea. Okay, I didn't think it was going to be fun but it is way worse than I thought. I don't want to scare anyone though because it is probably my personality combined with Amelia's that has made it so hard.

I was not ready to train Amelia before Colette was born. Looking back I absolutely should have but I did not feel ready. Right after Colette was born Amelia showed a lot of interest in the potty. Basically she was telling me she was ready and I was overwhelmed and didn't do anything about it. Another mistake. The New Year started approaching and I was finally feeling ready. Well...I missed my window. Now Amelia was over it and wanted nothing to do with it. Awesome.

Once January came I decided to casually start potty training. Amelia has been so easy with everything I really thought she would just pick it up. I kept her in a diaper and would ask her all the time about going potty and try and get her to sit. She wasn't interested. I made sticker charts with rewards, didn't work. I made a goal that when I bought the last pack of diapers that would be it. She needed to be trained by the end of the box. Well my casual approach was not working. The end of the box was nearing and I was getting frustrated. So about a month ago I decided to jump all the way in. We were basically stuck in the house because of snow anyway so I had no more excuses. I put trash bags and sheets on the couches and I put on some princess undies and hoped for the best. The best is not what I got. After 3 accidents, sitting on the toilet a lot, and many tantrums I almost threw in the towel. Then at the end of the day I was cooking dinner and I asked Amelia to sit on her potty. After 25 minutes, she went! We celebrated and she got a present. So much fun! Maybe it would work...

Day 2 started off REALLY bad. My happy girl had become possessed by something evil. She woke up grouchy, arguing, and throwing crazy tantrums. People kept telling me it's the terrible twos but I am pretty sure she had lost her mind. I decided to stick with it and put on her princess undies. After a morning accident and refusing to sit on the potty I put a pull up on and we headed to the library. We tried to go at the library but that was not happening. After 2 hours of playing with friends my happy girl was back. After a long nap she woke up and was excited to wear her underwear and try again! Yay! I downloaded a potty timer on my phone and it alerts me every 45 minutes. Every time the timer goes off we try. We did this the rest of the night and had 2! successful potty trips. It went like this day after day after day. Accidents and minimal success. Everyday. 

Fast forward to about a week ago. She was kind of trained. She stopped peeing during nap time. She was even using public toilets. However, she would never tell me when it was time to go. I had to ask her and force her to go. I still have to remind constantly. After a few very successful days in a row we had a monumentally bad day last Saturday. It was like she forgot everything. SHE PEED ON THE COUCH! I lost my mind. I called Brian (who was surfing) and said, "You need to come home and save her". I yelled at her. I took her bear away. I was really really mean. And then I cried and cried and cried. You guys, it was awful. Brian came home, calmed everyone down, spoke to Amelia like a rational loving parent,  and made Amelia stay naked for two days. What do you know, she has not had an accident since. All week when we are home, she is naked. She hasn't had one accident all week. It was like she needed to get one last accident day out of her system (she peed on her giraffe twice) and then she was done. She even tells me when she has to go. Naked works people. For those suffering with some potty training woes, if you haven't tried naked, do it! I don't want to call her potty trained yet, but we are so close. I can see the summit!

So on that happy note, spring has finally sprung! I even saw a flower in the backyard today! We have been outside all day everyday. We have been taking daily walks, playing at the beach, and a lot of yard time. We have to take advantage while its warm enough and before the bugs come. Its a short window so I am wasting no time indoors. Today I decided to do a little spring photo sesh with the girls. My mom sent Coco a cute denim flower dress for Easter and funny enough I had just bought the same one for Amelia. As cheesy as it is I LOVE matching outfits. We grabbed some chalk, bubbles, and my camera and played outside for a couple of hours. We had to stop when Coco kept choking on all the grass she was eating. She is crazy.

The pictures turned out more funny than cute. One of these days I will actually get a professional to take their pictures. 
 She makes this face all the time. Girl has her duck face down.
 Partners in crime since day 1. 
 Best I could get of the two of them. 
 Grass eater. 
I had to include this one because....Goose. 

Happy Spring!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Colette: 36 Weeks & Easter Dresses

 I couldn't get a clear picture this week because she wouldn't stop moving. 

36 Weeks
-Easter & Greek Easter!
-Pulling herself up on everything.
-Falls asleep every time she is in the stroller.
-Unswaddled and loving it. 
-Can get herself into the sitting position.
-Makes duck face. All. The. Time.
-Sleeping 12 hours at night.
-First taste of sugar (courtesy of Amelia).
-Plays independently. 
-First time in the hiking backpack.
-Our 7 year anniversary!

For Easter my mom sent the girls new dresses. We haven't been to church in two weeks and don't have many occasions for fancy dresses, so they haven't worn them yet. The dresses are so cute I wanted to make sure I got their pictures in them even if it was just around the house. I asked Amelia if she wanted to put on pretty dresses and take pictures. She said, "My Elsa dress? It's so beautiful". She even let me put a headband on. I jumped on it because that NEVER happens. So here they are:
 That dang photobombing Beary. Drives me crazy.
 I am in love with the above picture. They are both so sweet. 
The picture on the left is what happened when I took Beary away. The picture on the right is me telling her that she couldn't have Beary back until she smiled. Meanwhile Coco is so thrilled to be sitting next to Amelia that she couldn't stop smiling. 

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, April 13, 2015

Greek Easter

Christos Anesti! I threw my very first Greek Easter dinner yesterday. Not only have I never cooked Greek food for anyone else, I've never really cooked much of it in general. I'm more of an eater really. I gave it a shot this year and I am willing to call it a success. I think it's mostly because I invited people over that have never celebrated Greek Easter so they have nothing to compare it to. 

Turns out cooking for Greek Easter is quite the labor of love. To prep I pretty much was doing something everyday last week. After a big shopping trip with both girls in tow I started with a crowd favorite, tiropetes. My family has always used the recipe from the Eva Zane cook book. In my opinion, it's the best. Like I said, I'm an eater so you should take my word for it. 
I have made tiropetes a few times before so I was confident that these would be good. It is such a long process but well worth it. If it wasn't for that pesky bechamel sauce. I can never seem to get it thick enough and Brian always has to come in and take over. Every time. Apparently I have no patience. 
 It took us two hours of rolling. Luckily we had the Sons of Anarchy to keep up company. 
Since I did the tiropetes a few days early I put them in the freezer and you can pop them in the oven straight from the freezer. 

The next thing on my list was dessert. Now in my mind I felt like a Greek dessert was too labor intensive (and I am a terrible baker) so I thought I would do something easier. I decided I would decorate sugar cookies. Well it turns out those take FOREVER. Make the dough, roll the dough, cut the cookies, bake the cookies, make the icing, decorate. This was a mess and took forever but....they turned out really cute. I'm happy I did it. Maybe next year I will just make baklava. 

 To top it off they actually tasted really good. I tried a new recipe: 

Cream together: 1 C sugar, 2 sticks softened butter
Add: 2 Eggs, 4 Tblsp Cream and a little vanilla
Then add: 3 C flour, 2 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp baking soda
Mix well
Refigerate: 2 hours (at least)
Roll, cut, & bake at 350 for 6-7 minutes

Icing: I actually just made this up as I went. I wanted icing that would harden so I could stack the cookies. I used a couple tablespoons melted butter, a couple tablespoons whole milk, light Karo syrup, vanilla, and powdered sugar. I put probably a cup of powdered sugar. I just mixed until I got the desired taste and consistency. 
The day before I did most of my cooking and prep. I made pastitsio (barefoot contessa recipe), cut & marinated the chicken, peeled and cut potatoes, made tsatziki,  and cooked & dyed the eggs.
About a half and hour before everyone came over I started to put things in the oven. I didn't take a lot of pictures of the food or our activities because I was either eating or watching Amelia out the window. We lucked out with perfect weather. Next year if we have good weather again I would love to make it a big back yard party. We do live in Maine though so we'll see. 

Here are a couple of pictures I did get:
Excuse the blurry picture. 
We played the red egg game before dinner. The kids loved it. Amelia was terrified and after her egg was smashed she continued to crumple it up in her fingers. 

We had a great time celebrating our heritage and I look forward to improving my Greek cooking every year. Kalo Pascha!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Happy Easter

I love this time of year. The weather is warmer, we get to celebrate two Easters, and candy. Mostly candy. The girls are still young so we can still be pretty mellow with the Easter morning festivities. Last night I put out their baskets. Well, I put out Amelia's basket and Coco's gifts. I am too cheap to buy a full priced basket so I am waiting until after Easter to get the girls matching baskets for next year. 
Amelia's basket had a couple of Easter books, Mickey stickers, a dinosaur, some gummy candy, a tiara, and a wind up bunny. She also got a really cute Easter box from my mom and I threw in some peeps for a surprise. 
Colette's "basket" had a couple of books, a bib, and some lamb slippers (thanks Aunt Katie!). Late last night I realized Amelia had a basket tag and Colette didn't so I attempted to make one for Coco as well. 
The girls were up early and Amelia was very excited when I told her the Easter Bunny came. She tore through her basket and panicked when we showed her the wind up toy. 
Coco is easy to please. 
It took me approximately 400 tries to get a decent picture. 

After we opened the gifts Amelia had a little egg hunt. We hid a dozen(ish) eggs in the living room with one jelly bean in each. When she discovered that there was candy in them it was much more important for her to find the eggs. After our egg hunt we spent the morning with some friends for a big Easter breakfast and an even bigger egg hunt. The food was fantastic! I am not much of a cook but our friends make killer food. Especially the pastries. Really really good. 

The rest of the day has been low key. We did take a 4 mile walk to the beach on account of all the food, but it has been relaxing. Easter and general conference on the same day is my kind of Sunday. 

Our next Easter celebration will be less about the candy and presents and more about the food. Hopefully I can do my ancestors proud and deliver some decent Greek food. 

Happy Easter from our family to yours!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Operation Fitness: Goal Digging

I am now a month into my journey and I wanted to check in on my original goals

My goals are:
-400 Miles in 6 months
-Kick my caffeine habit
-Lose weight
-A gallon of water a day
-No fast food/candy/sweets
-Regular posts about my fitness
-Sign up for birthday half marathon

So where am I on my goals?? Let start with goal one. This goal has been my main focus. If I am going to get 400 miles in 6 months that is roughly 65-70 miles a month and a little over 2 miles a day. I am right on target with this goal. I did 68 miles in the month of March and I am feeling really good. I can't wait to take the running/walking/hiking to outside. My addition for this goal going into April would be to do less walking and more intervals. 

Kicking my caffeine habit...I am not doing so well. In fact, I am doing terrible. I went the first two weeks and didn't even crave it. I was so excited. Then I hit my "free" day. I thought to myself, what's the harm. Well here I am back to at least one caffeine drink a day. Nothing to add to this goal since it is so challenging on its own. I am just going to take this one day at a time. Really I just need more sleep and more willpower. 

Lose weight. Like I said before, this is secondary. If I accomplish all my other goals this will happen. I need to lose weight so if I make the changes I will. I am trying not to focus on the number but more non scale victories. That being said, I have lost 6 lbs in the first month. I hope to keep up a 3-4lb weight loss every month until Sept and then maintain that weight. 

Drinking a gallon of water a day. I am proud to say that this is going great. Out of the month of March I have probably missed 5 days total. On those 5 days I drank at least a half gallon. I have been able to maintain this because of my new system. Every night I fill up my gallon jug and put it in the fridge. I wake up in the morning and fill up my contigo bottle with ice and drink away. I just have to finish that one gallon in the day. No more guess work. Also my water bottle keeps the water ice cold all day (I need it really cold). The gallon and bottle come everywhere with me. 

I have been doing well with no sweets and fast food. I have had french fries once, taco bell once, and one unfortunate peep and cadbury egg situation. Other than a couple free day freebies I would say that this goal is going well. Going forward I am going to continue what I am doing with this. I would love to cut sweets out entirely but its not realistic and if I don't occasionally indulge I may fail even more. 

I have been trying to post regularly about how I am doing. I keep in touch with my work out buddy daily via text. Since I don't have time to blog everyday I have been keeping a private fitness instagram (@yoast_fitness) so I can post daily. I do this so I keep myself accountable. If I stop posting there is probably a reason so I am doing my best to track my meals, workouts, and changes. So far I have felt like this is really helping me. I follow a lot of fitness instagram accounts on there and they offer motivation as well. If you want to follow along just look it up and I will add you, I just didn't want to post sports bra pictures on my regular account. Here are a couple of my daily postings that are on that account.  

Last goal is to sign up for a birthday half. I still plan on signing up for a half but I have signed up for a 5K in September with friends. I am looking to do the half in Bar Harbor mid Sept. but I am not fully committed. Nervous I guess. 

Lastly I wanted to show another progress picture. The difference in the pictures is actually only 2.5 weeks but it's the best I have from the beginning of Operation Fitness. The weight difference in the pictures is around 4 lbs but I think I am losing more inches than lbs. This is another example of why weight doesn't matter as much as the other stuff. 

Warning: sports bra selfie 

Sorry about the dirty mirror...and Minnie Mouse potty in the background. 

Happy Thursday!