Monthly Archives: January 2012

Practice makes perfect


So yesterday Sparrow figured out how to make a “bbbbwah” sound and he’s been very proud of himself over this fact.

It was kind of a dramatic night around here. In the span of an hour Sprout went from a bit congested to listless, throwing up and then Stephen rushed him off to Urgent Care. In that same time period, my refrigerator door stopped shutting completely and Bean started coughing a lot too and she had some stomach problems of her own, but not as severe. Sparrow became irritated because he wanted to be held so he could show off his “bwah” right in my face.

Stephen got back from Urgent Care and Sprout just has a bad virus that just needs to be waited out. He temporarily fixed the fridge, but I need to call a repair man today. Sprout and Bean coughed all night long.

And then Mr. Bwah decides 4:30am is a good time to start practicing his “bwah” sound again. By 5:30am he is pretty angry about the fact that he does not have an audience for this wondrous new trick of his. I walk down the hall pick him up expecting that he’s hungry and, no, he is not interested in that. He just wants to say “bwah… bwah… bwah” right next to my face.

Being a parent is hard. I miss my sleep. And I would like a quarantine bubble from this germ factory I am in.

But being a parent teaches me a lot about who I am. How selfish I am and my (in)capacity to love. How I need to grow. Become more humble. More of a servant. Care for others. Stop thinking about myself and putting myself first all the time.


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Sparrow month 6

Sparrow is at my most favorite age right now. I love six to eight month olds. They are the best. Smiley, curious, still pretty good nappers, giggly, easily entertained, chatty, those kicky happy feet, when they discover their hands or feet and can’t stop looking at them for a couple days, solid food and less nursing, still a little snuggly, etc.

Sparrow loves his siblings and watching them do things. His favorite is when they bring one of their toys or toy sets and start playing right in front of where he is. He loves toys with rings that he can grab onto.

He has four teeth. Vampire fangs on top and two in the middle on the bottom. His top middles are close to coming in. Everything is in his mouth all the time.

Sprout is really warming up to his baby brother. He even has this special high pitched squeaky voice that he reserves just for talking to Sparrow. It’s pretty funny. Bean is still very much in love with babies and “her” little baby Sparrow.

I busted out the sailor outfit this month. I couldn’t find the hat though.

And here are all my guys…

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Instagram Digest 1/14-1/23/12

We love the zoo.

Quesadilla burrito

January Photo A Day Challenge: What I’m reading

January Photo A Day Challenge: Morning

Dance party in the living room with The Beatles and American Girl dolls.

Birthday celebration continues! Sprout’s Fire Chief costume arrived today.


This sort of thing never happened with my $30 American Eagle jeans. Just because it costs more, doesn’t mean it’s better.

Yes, I let my kids have chocolate cake for breakfast. It’s birthday party week!

Kind of a nightmare, a huge container of snaps came crashing down when I was trying to get something out of my closet. Snaps were in all of our shoes, down my shirt, under guitars, and they flew out of the closet and under furniture.

January Photo A Day Challenge: Some things I bought

Toddler lunch

January Photo A Day Challenge: Sweet

January Photo A Day Challenge: Water

Sparrow having a bottle of warm water to aid digestion, this bottle has had a few prior owners.

Snuggles on the couch with my girl. I wasn’t feeling well.

January Photo A Day Challenge: Someone you love

I love this ticklish little baby boy!

Sleepy Mickey

Sometime during the night, Sprout crawled into Bean’s bed and she snuggled right up to him.

In honor of the rain, Bean is reenacting the flood story with her LittlePeople. All of them.

January Photo A Day Challenge: Something old

Teacup from Stephen’s great grandma

January Photo A Day Challenge: Reflection

January Photo A Day Challenge: Your shoes

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Sparrow, my little foodie baby

The longer I parent, I find myself adapting and reworking various parenting practices depending on the situation or kid and what it/they requires.

When I was pregnant with Bean, I was so dogmatic about attachment parenting and co-sleeping. I thought every practice was the holy grail of right parenting. And then several things did not work for our family at all.

And then Sprout came along and I found a whole different kid requiring a whole different way of parenting in some ways.

So slowly over the last 3 1/2 years the dogma has been chipped away at.

Bean is a very sensitive kid in many ways. On everything from her food allergies early on to disciplining her (with her, a certain tone or pitch can put her in tears) to having everything just right to certain textures of foods and spices.

Sprout is very independent and physical and mischievous. Disciplining him requires physical intervention. We have to go to him, make him stop, put him in time out, etc. and a simple “no” or “stop” never seems to have much of an effect.

Their differences also have come out in their eating. Bean has always been very picky and particular about her food. We did the traditional method of baby feeding with her. Around five months when she started watching our every bite at meal times and reaching for our food, I started her on rice cereal and went on to the various puréed foods, then puffs and yogurt melts, etc. Then there was a month where the only food I could get her to eat were yogurt melts, puffs, freeze dried fruit and the chicken and star pasta toddler soup from Earth’s Best. And she’s been just as picky ever since. Getting her to eat and try new foods is still almost always a challenge.

With Sprout I had read a little about baby led weaning where you just feed the baby what you are having once they show an interest in your food without puréed foods or rice cereal. It seemed like the best fit for Mr. Independent. Even though he had teeth, he had a very strong gag reflex and, I now believe, some pretty serious reflux problems. I even tried puréed foods a few times and he would have trouble with those. So it was probably not until around about 10 months old that he actually started eating solid foods.

And Sparrow is just as different from his siblings. Physically, he doesn’t seem as coordinated as I remember his siblings being at this age, especially compared to Sprout. He doesn’t quite sit up very well, he still has very jerky, flailing arm movements like a newborn, he just barely started rolling over, etc. He has started to seem more observant and interested in us and what is going on around him the last few weeks. I honestly didn’t really think he was at all interested in food and wouldn’t be for quite awhile based on these observations, and then he chomped down on one of my sweet potato fries and started sucking food off my fingers.


So with Sparrow I’m doing a bit of traditional meets baby led weaning. He clearly wants and likes our food, but his lack of coordination is not conducive to just throwing chunks of avocado or banana on a tray and letting him pick them up to gnaw on. I mash a lot of soft stuff like that with my fingers and he will grab my hand, open his mouth and put it in.


I am also doing some puréed foods. But not really in the traditional way of just one food at a time or rice cereal. He eats pretty much the same stuff as what we are eating. Of all our kids, Sparrow certainly seems to be the most enthusiastic about food and eating. He gets so excited and giggling during meals sometimes.

One morning we had oatmeal and smoothies. So for Sparrow I took a little cooked oats, raisins and pears and blended that with a little spinach to hide some greens in easily. He loved it.

I made lentil soup the other night with root vegetables and grilled sausage. So I just took a portion out for Sparrow and blended it up in the VitaMix. Another win for our little foodie.

This weekend we went down to Disneyland again. So since I knew I would not have my blender or be able to transport my perishable baby food delicacies, we wound up picking up a few jars at the Whole Foods in Tustin. What other baby gets this excited and happy to eat mashed peas?

His attitude is so great. It makes me look forward to feeding him. Trying new things and eating is so fun for him!

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He’s two!


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Instagram Digest 1/7-1/13/12

Eating is so tiring.

January Photo A Day Challenge: Your sky

Baked rigatoni with squash, caramelized onions, bacon, Parmesan and Fontina.

Bean’s recital costume and supplies to make a mini version for her doll. I hope I can do it!

Kaleidoscopes are fun!

January Photo A Day Challenge: Daily routine

The compromise solution to Sprout coming in our room all night long. Lightening McQueen sleeping bag on an exercise pad at the foot of our bed.

January Photo A Day Challenge: Childhood

Love my little bookworm.

Snuggles on the floor.


January Photo A Day Challenge: Where You Sleep

Butternut squash faces.

Another coffee maker bites the dust.

Sometimes the Santa Ana winds make it impossible to enjoy a picnic at the park and the indoor living room picnic is born.

January Photo A Day Challenge: Close-up

I told the kids they could put whatever they wanted in my foil lid. “No meat, no thank you Mama.”

Pretty little speckled egg.

This better be worth it.

Bean is kind of getting freaked out by all the pins I am putting in her doll to make this costume.

January Photo A Day Challenge: Inside your bag

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We went to the zoo and Bean took some pictures

Wednesday after ballet, I decided to drive the kids up to the zoo and make use of our year long membership we bought on Bean’s birthday. I told the kids ahead of time we would do this and Bean insisted on bringing her little wooden camera.

Me: You don’t need to bring your camera, I will let you take some pictures with my phone if you want.
Bean: No, I want to bring my very own camera to take pictures of all the animals.

She looked like the ultimate little tourist. It was so adorable!














I did let her take some photos with my phone and she actually did a pretty good job!

In one case she took a better photo than me, in part because her stature creates a different perspective.

Here is my duck picture:

Here is Bean’s:

Here are some of the other photos she took:




Baby flamingo

Eager otters


Filed under Family, Photography