Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Favorite Baby Items

I have been asked by a couple of different people recently for suggestions on baby registries so I decided I would share some of my favorite products for those who are expecting and might want to know.

Ultimate Crib Sheet - A friend suggested this to me when I was pregnant otherwise I never would have tried one and boy am I glad I did.  Having this has made changing Jackson's bed so much easier than having to remove the crib sheet and the mattress pad if we have an accident.

Sleep Sacks - I know most babies like to be swaddled at the early stage but mine did not.  Almost as soon as we came home from the hospital, he wanted his arms free and, luckily, he would sleep that way.  The sleep sacks have been a lifesaver for us when a blanket just wouldn't work anymore since Jackson moved around to much.  I have bought most of the ones we have from Zulily when they have offered them at a discount rate.  The shipping takes forever but the price is usually pretty good.

Space Saver High Chair - I love our space saver high chair. Our house is small which means our dining area is small.  We didn't have a lot of room for a big, bulky high chair.  This chair fits into our normal dining chair so it doesn't take up much extra space and can be used as a booster once Jackson is to that point.  Plus it is less than half what you'd pay for a normal high chair and will last me longer.

Baby Palmolive - This dish soap is formulated specifically for baby bottles, sippy cups, and baby toys.  I believe it came out on the market around the time Jackson was born and it is all we have used to clean his stuff.    I have been having a hard time finding it in stores but you can order it online which we did just this last week since we ran out.

Method Baby Wash - I made the statement recently that I didn't have a favorite baby wash.  That I had just used different things because it was what I had.  I lied.  I have tried Johnson and Johnson's and Aveeno and this is definitely my favorite.  I love the Rice and Mallow scent and I love that the cap can be used to rinse the baby.  We have actually been using the Method baby detergent and dyer sheets and I love those products as well.

Robeez - I love these shoes and ones in similar styles.  They are so easy to get on and off but they stay on J's feet so well.  They are also great for a baby that is learning to walk since they are designed to be close to bare feet.

Of course, I believe we all have our own preferences on baby products based on our individual preferences and the baby's preferences.  We have been lucky that Jackson was an easy baby from the get go. We haven't run into issues with allergies that have prevented us from being able to use whatever we wanted for him.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

9 Months

Jackson turned 9 months old on Friday.  We also had his 9 month checkup that afternoon.  I now understand why everyone kept commenting on how big he was while we were in Alabama.  Little stinker weighed in at 21 lbs 5 oz (78 percentile) and 28 3/4 inches tall (68 percentile).  I guess he is on the big side although he doesn't seem that way to me since I have seen the natural progression of his growth.  I was pretty shocked at how many people said something about him being "a big boy." Someone actually said they thought he was at least a year old.
The last month has brought about a lot of change around our house.  Jackson has mastered both the belly on the floor and belly off the floor crawling.  He prefers belly on the floor because he can move faster and this is his method of traveling when he is trying to run away from us.  The living room has turned into a sort of baby playpen. We block off the hall way with one of the dog gates and use the ottoman to prevent exit into the foyer.  This only works if the chair is pushed against the couch so he can't crawl between and through the end table into the dining room which also gives him access to the kitchen.  I spend a lot of time wrangling the baby.
He also has started pulling up on the furniture and anything else that's available to him.  Just the other day he took a couple of steps while holding on to his walker and let go of the couch for a second to stand on his own before falling to the floor.  I won't be surprised if he is walking in the next month.
Probably my favorite and least favorite change all at the same time is that little man is much more vocal.  I love hearing "Mama" when I walk through the door from work each day and he added "Da" while we were in Alabama.  Taking him away from Chris for a week really did make him miss his daddy and he has been very clingy to him since we got back.  (Yes, he said mama first and he does know who he's referring to although he isn't always consistent with it.) However, he has started screeching.  I can't stand it.  When he doesn't get his way, he just screams and I am trying to figure out a way to break him of this.
I really am loving this age.  I have said that I have loved every stage so far and, while that is true, I think I am having the most fun right now.  He is just so entertaining and I can really see his personality coming out.  Jackson is going to be a trouble maker.  He is so curious and it's fun to watch him explore the world around him.                            

Jackson Does J-Day

I mentioned in an early post that I was going home to attend J-Day at my college since I was being installed as Treasurer of our Alumni Association.  I guess a little background might be helpful here.  My college was a Southern Baptist women's college.  Since we don't have a sports team to have a homecoming for, we have J-Day which is our reunion weekend.  It's a lot of fun to see ladies from the various years gather together to celebrate their school.  Needless to say, Jackson was a hit over the weekend with everyone thinking my sweet boy was the most adorable thing ever.

Jackson sitting on the seal in Jewett Hall.
 
More than once I had to tell Jackson, "Let's not eat the antiques."
All dressed up at the Golden Club Banquet wearing his "My Mama is a Judson Girl" bib. 
 We had to sneak out of the banquet since someone got a little fussy.
 
Mom and Jackson during the Business Meeting. He was so good until he started growling during the installation of officers.
The new JCAA Board Officers for 2012-2014
Someone's patience was about done at this point and we still had another banquet to sit through.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Easter

My trip to Alabama kept me from being able to post an update for Jackson's first Easter.  We managed to cram a ton of stuff into the weekend included 2 Easter egg hunts, a birthday party, and a stop by trade days in downtown Round Rock.  Here are a few pictures from the weekend.
Meeting the Easter Bunny for the first time. I don't think he knew what to think. 
"Hunting" for eggs at the baby friendly Easter egg hunt at Baby Earth. 
Plastic eggs are tasty! 
Checking out his Easter basket. 
All dressed up for church. 

Friday, April 13, 2012

Quick Notes on the Trip So Far

• Jackson was an angel on the flights. He slept through most of each flight and only fussed a little bit right before landing in Mobile.

• It's a good thing he was an angel on the planes because he was the devil yesterday. I have never seen my child so cranky. I can't help but blame the 3 teeth that are trying to cut right now.

• He screamed the entire 30 minute drive from my parents' house to see my dad at work. He never does that and is normally great in the car. Only to turn into my sweet baby the second we got out of the car.

• My mother apparently thinks I have forgotten how to drive around my hometown since she proceeded to give me directions to the high school I attended for 4 years and the hospital my dad has worked at since I was 9 months old.

• I have not forgotten. I just don't take the routes she would therefore they must be wrong. Six years away does not erase 28 of living in the same town.

• Rice cereal is magic. Call me a bad parent if you must but Jackson sleeps better with a little cereal in his bedtime bottle. Proven by the fact he his still asleep 11 hours later versus only sleeping 8 hours without it.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Bluebonnets

I feel like a lot of my posts have been pretty down recently so I thought I would post something more cheerful. One of the things I love the most about living in Texas is bluebonnets in the spring.  There is nothing like the first spotting of bluebonnets each year to put a smile on my face.  
So of course we had to find an opportunity to take some pictures for Jackson's first spring. 
Jackson really didn't seem to enjoy having his picture taken but I think we got some good shots of him.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Solo Flight

Way back during the summer shortly after I had Jackson I received a phone call from my mom one night telling me that I had been nominated to be Treasurer of my college's Alumni Board for the next 2 years.  The conversation went something like this:

Mom: "You are going to get a call from Carol May asking if you want to be treasurer of the Alumni Board. Tell her you'll do it."
Me: "OK"

Basically, I am fortunate enough to be friends with the current president of our board (I've known her most of my life) and she nominated me for the position despite the fact I live 3 states away from the school.  And since my mother will look for any excuse she can find to get Jackson me home, this was perfect for her because I would have to make at least 2 trips home a year for the next 2 years.  Over time I started to get more and more excited about the idea. My school is getting ready to celebrate it's 175th anniversary and I will be on the board for that event. Once the official nominations came out in October, I couldn't wait for April to get here so I could make the trip.

Then Mom was diagnosed with lymphoma and everything changed. I debating turning down the office. I questioned whether or not it would be a good idea to make the trip. I don't even know if my mom will be able to go with me. And now I'm just scared. Scared of how she is going to be and how I am going to react when I see her.  Rather than be excited about this trip, I am dreading it. Not only will I be taking Jackson on his first plane ride alone at 8 months old, I will possibly be driving another 3 hours away from my hometown to the college where I might spend the entire weekend solo parenting my son.  This wouldn't be so bad at my house but, away from everything familiar to him, I fear it will be a nightmare.  I can definitely tell the stress of the situation is getting to me. My shoulders and neck are in knots and my anxiety is through the roof right now.

So please send any and all good thoughts my way next week as I head to Alabama on Wednesday.  I pray that Mom is feeling up to the trip to Marion because I really want her to be there with me and I know I will be disappointed if she doesn't get to go. And pray that Jackson is calm on the flights so that I can keep what little sanity I still have intact over the weekend.