Thursday, July 21, 2011

Fourth of July

Fourth of July has always been a big holiday in my family. My grandma's birthday is the 4th and for as long as I can remember, the entire family got together for the weekend. Typically we would gather at my grandparents' lake house for a weekend of food (oh the food), water, giant slip 'n slides, boating, family, fireworks and fun. My grandpa usually planned the whole weekend from the deep fried junk food lunch to the AMAZING fireworks show he put on every year. I don't even know the last time I've been to a fireworks show other than my grandpa's.

As you can imagine, this year was going to be rough come July 4. Not only is my grandpa not here to lead this family in our traditions but it was the double whammy for my grandpa in that it was her first birthday without him. Sucks. We asked her what she wanted to do and she said to avoid the lake scene altogether. We decided to spend Fourth of July in the woods instead.

I think it was a great idea and we all had a great time even though I think everyone had their moments in which they reflected on Grandpa not being there. The hardest part for me was my brother lighting off fireworks at night. I think we were all kind of pretending it wasn't really Fourth of July but you can't deny what the fireworks mean.

On the actual 4th, my grandma wanted to visit my grandpa's hunting spots on the property and spread ashes. It was the perfect day to do it and a great way to keep my grandpa "part of the action" that weekend. My dad even created little memorials at each of the locations so you can give him a wave when you drive by on the four wheelers.

Going to spread ashes

At one of the hunting spots

Grandma and her brother (Uncle Dick)

Drinking a beer with a baby on my back. I'm klassy like that.

Madelyn and her Grandma

Bar 10
All in all, it was great to spend that time together as a family and we all realized we will get through this together!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Madelyn's Eighth Month

Let me just say, I have myself a fiery little 8 month old.  This girl has taken to grunting and growling when she isn't getting what she wants.  I've got it on video as proof when she gets older and doesn't believe me.  I know I talk about how opinionated she is every month but I'm not kidding.  We now have full blown "conversations" that go something along the lines of:
Madelyn - ah ba ba ba
Mom - ba ba?
Madelyn - ba da da ba
Mom - really! da da? how about ma ma?
Madelyn - da da
Mom - thanks for the love kiddo
Madelyn - ba

We took our first vacation this month and went up north for Fourth of July. Family tradition and my grandma's birthday dictate that we spend that time with my family. Fourth of July has always been my grandpa's holiday. He organized it, prepped for it, executed it. Since this was going to be the first year he wasn't here we decided to hit up Bar 10 instead of the lake. It was a blast! Madelyn went on her first four wheeler ride and LOVED it! She also loved going on the Ranger and would squeal while she jumped up on down on my lap.

Just a hillbilly baby and her dog

She spent a lot of time in the Ergo while we were up north and she really seems to like it. She can be a part of the action without anyone touching her. She also naps really well in it and I've been able to get over an hour nap out of her whereas in her crib I am lucky if I get 20 minutes. We've used it a lot of shopping as well.

We went swimming while we were up there and she spent some time in her baby pool.  Miss. Madelyn loves the water! I'm really glad and hope that by starting her early we will avoid any fears of water in the coming years!

We had so much fun Fourth of July that we followed it up with a second weekend up north.  This time the Barish family joined us!

Crawling - we're still working on that one. She is getting really frusterated and it is starting to affect her sleep so I hope she figures it out soon. She has started waking up in the middle of the night and will be on all fours rocking and crying at the same time. She has also started separation anxiety and gets really upset whenever she's left alone in a room. I think once she masters crawling and can "find you" she will calm down. At least that's what I keep telling myself. In the meantime, she is an expert at "the worm" and it seems to be working for now.

Everything is still going well on the food front.  No allergies to speak of and she seems to like everything.  Her favorites right now are zucchini and peaches. She still isn't a fan of bananas. We also tried eggs for the first time this month and she thought that was super! Her poops have also officially changed and really freaked out about her diapers staining. I have some disposable liners that I inherited somewhere along the way and we've been using those for the time being. I also bought some unbleached muslin that my mom is going to use to make reusable liners. Hopefully it does the trick.

Speaking of diapers, we've officially completed our diaper stash for the rest of her diaper days (hopefully). I decided to go with the Fuzzibunz One Size instead of mediums and I was able to find some awesome deals. The one size should get us the rest of the way so now any diaper purchases will just be because I can't stand the cuteness, not because she needs them.

We also had another giant playdate this month. We went to the Detroit Zoo. Madelyn was more interested in playing with her toys than the animals but I think Ben had a pretty good time!

Overall, it was a pretty decent month but I will say, I am fearing month 9. The last week or so has had some pretty nasty sleep challenges, including one night that made me feel like we were back in the newborn stage. If we don't get this under control soon, I just might lose my mind!
Flipping me the bird after a bedtime battle - told you she was fiesty!